Saturday, December 26, 2009


I underestimated the time needed to be ready for guests. I was vacuuming when the first of them arrived. We had a very festive time of it. The Indian pudding was awful. I'd screwed up the recipe and had too much dark molasses in it so it was goopy instead of cakey and borderline bitter. Yuck. On the other hand we'd all had plenty to eat with the addition of potatoes au gratin from one guest and green bean casserole and sweet potato souffle from another. I imposed on all the guests to admire the wedding pictures and the beautiful pictures of DGSs all framed and ready to hang DD#1 sent. There was a collection of 4 pictures of each young man beautiful photographed by the father of one of them. DD told me he'd taken about 80 informal shots and she picked these out of the many that were good and he had them all framed. It must have cost her a bundle and it was the sole gift from the whole gang. I have to wait three years for the collection of DGS's pictures. This was part of the traditional senior pictures. She's just in the ninth grade. They are all gorgeous kids and I don't know how they came out that way. They are all good kids. The Christmas card from the family has a wonderful picture of the kids and DD taken last August in CA. In case you haven't noticed I miss them sooo much I'm teary as I write.

Christmas in Hawaii. That sounds as good as New Zealand. The church service does, indeed sound interesting.

Sarah, I bought a cheap ($25) workout watch last spring and it gives all kinds of information but the heart rate function which was the only reason I bought it failed after just a couple of weeks. I just wanted to monitor it so I could see improvement over time. With the pre-holiday rush I have hardly done anything for two weeks and walking today was much more challenging than it was a few weeks ago. Shadow and I both need to keep moving or we'll stop altogether.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas afternoon

Oh, good, my present is that I can finally check the WWQP. I wish I could sprout wings and fly to Hawaii then on to NZ for visits. Woke up to wind and later in the day light rain. Very warm though--as in 78 or so.
Right now it's over, debating on a 30 min. drive to beach or not.
The DD and gang in N.D. are snowed in. Their first blizard/one Z or 2? Anyway, they are having fun, opened all the gifts, and a neighbor gave them a sled so they are going up and down the driveway. She will send a pic. of the quilt with her in the pic.
DH gave me a runner's watch which is so complicated that neither of us can figure out the instructions. Lots of chocolate.
Jane-I know what you mean about the cookies. I was eating them as fast as baking them 2 weeks ago, finally said "enough". I too found that the packaged mix was the best receipe for gingerbread cookies. I tried out 2 from scratch, but the judge (DH) said the 3rd was the best.
There are exactly 2 restaurants in this big city open for Christmas dinner. We don't want to drive to Amelia Island for a fancy to-do. Guess we'll go to the neighborhood place.
Had planed to see Sherlock Holmes movie, but it got 1 star out of 5, so I'll wait for the red box or HBO to get it. Maybe another movie after that.
Doris-thanks for the dog video Christmas. Loved it! My girls got a box of Milk Bones.
OK, hope everyone had a blessed day so far.
Sara in Fla.

Mele Kalikimaka

is Hawaiian's way to say Merry Christmas to you.... Yup, we are in Hawaii enjoying temps in the 80s and listning to the waves of the ocean crash again the shore. Feeling a little sorry for all of our friends and family who are in the midwest with ice and snow - including at least 12 inches of snow at our house from last report. We went to a Methodist candle light service in Kono last night. There are three congregations that worship at this open-sided Methodist church: traditional, Korean and Tongan. It was a combined service with scripture and music in each of the languages. What a great experience. Hope you all have a great day. Joleen in Hawaii not MN.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Present

Whew, I just had to get off my poor feet while the cookies cool. I’ve had a very rough week or two due primarily to my complete inability to anticipate things far enough in advance to accomplish that which I want or need to do. The situation is still out of hand. I was so stressed that I woke at 3 AM today (it’s now 3:45 PM as I draft this) worried about the horrendous mess in my living room/kitchen area and couldn’t get back to sleep. I wouldn’t care but I invited other childless orphans in the neighborhood to join me tomorrow afternoon for dinner. One of them is the aged and mentally slipping father of one of the other guests. I got up and transferred a bunch of stuff to the guest room and sewing room and that calmed me down a bit and at 4:30 I managed to get back to sleep until the alarm went off at 7. I don’t normally bake at this time of year as I eat that sugary junk as fast as it comes out of the oven. However, I do want to have a bit of a gift for the guests. I discovered sometime in the past year or so that Betty Crocker ginger bread mix has a cookie recipe on the back that requires only the addition of the naughty melted butter and hot water. The cookies are very tasty. I tested only one and distributed all the rest in small cookie tins for the two couples and the other single (the old gentleman) to present tomorrow.

It’s now a bit past 8 and I’m out of steam so will head to the unmade bed soon. The table is set with the Wall Mark damask table cloth which looks great but for the creases that I didn’t bother to press out when I unpacked it. The cheap 3’ artificial tree is cute and I’ll just move the rest of the stuff out tomorrow and vacuum. I’m fixing Indian pudding in the morning. I haven’t done that in at least 25 years. Look it up in your cook book. It’s always been a favorite with me and I had to resurrect my 50 year old edition of the joy of cooking. Dinner will be a simple affair of pork tenderloin with some olive oil, lemon juice (I learned about the lemon on pork from a work colleague whose immigrant Greek parents had a restaurant among the many Greek restaurants in Tarpon Springs, FL where Greek is the language on the street. Great eating there. I bought a rosemary tree and have managed to kill it in just a week so the roast with have rosemary along with garlic too. I’ll roast some veggies with them and the guests are brining other stuff in the way of veggies. Sounds yummy to me right now.

Anyway, like everyone else, I’ve been too busy making Christmas stockings for the new step grands and other stuff to post.

I took note of the borderline snide remarks by our friends from down under especially the remark about strawberries and cream. As I’ve said before I’ve just got to get down there. I think February might be a good time except strawberry season will be well over by then but we will be sick of winter here and there you will be moving into autumn. Speaking of New Zealand, we haven’t heard anything from Tenneh on the Mt. in a long time. I hope it’s just because they’ve been busy. I hope, too, that her husband’s mobility problems have been resolved. Does anyone know?

As I emerged from the end of my driveway to head to Weight Watchers this morning I noted a package hanging from my mail box so stopped to get it. It was obvious to me that it must be wedding pictures from DD’s wedding in August. Immediately after the meeting was over at 10 I couldn’t contain myself and opened it up and went through the album sitting in the parking lot. It’s a new format for me. It was in the form of a bound book with the pictures printed on heavy paper. I’m afraid my guests will have to endure going through the book making appropriate ohs and ahs.

Welp, as Donnie, also missing in action, would say, I’m heading for bed so I can finish the superficial clean up and get the pudding baked without getting stressed out tomorrow.

Blessings of the season for folks of all religious and other persuasions.


Merry Christmas

It's raining here in central Alabama, as time for dinner approaches. Dad has the hose running to the pool, because the level was low, but no one will be swimming in it until late spring. We have church tonight, including an 'unrehearsed' children's pageant. Heaven only knows what that will involve. We'll end singing 'Silent Night' as we leave by candlelight. Tomorrow, we'll eat lunch at my brother's home, and the family will go its separate ways from there. The other brother, wife, and kids are heading out to SIL's family after lunch. I'll be back here for a few more days, because I don't have to be back at work Monday. I'll travel after rush hour then. DH will probably take the dogs home Saturday.
No quilting going on here, but my nephew asked me to make a Bible cover out of an old flannel shirt, complete with the pocket. I have an idea, and if it turns out OK, I'll let you know.
Merry Christmas and prayers for safe travel and happy memories of this holiday season!
Laura in Alabama

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Christmas Wishes

to all. We are sitting in lovely warm weather eating fresh strawberries and cream, with a nice wine to follow, jealous anyone????? It is supposed to be good weather for the Christmas time. We have a pool for our GK so it will get lot of use. She is 20 months now and we all have put money together to buy her a slide , swing , pool and a climbing frame. This is going beside her sand pit , so she will be busy all summer. Our DD says she is going to have to find some hand work to do outside so she can watch her.I do hope the weather improves in the States, so far it sounds terrible, you all have snow and cold and poor Fran in Aussie is not too far from bad fires . I am going to phone her after I have written this just to see if they are far enough away from the bush fires. Australia is a very dry place and a lot of the trees are Eucalypts and are full of oils . it doesn't take much to set them alight. When we read about the problems around the world we are so pleased we live in NZ, no bush fires, no hurricanes, no snow ( not here anyway)nothing to bite us , as in snakes . No wonder some people say we live in Paradise. Have a happy holiday my friends I will think of you on Christmas Day and say a prayer for those who are sick and wish all a safe and prosperous New Year. Hugs Bee in NZ.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

With best wishes at Christmas time..

Just popping in to wish my cyber friends all the best for the Christmas season.
We will be away for the Christmas week staying with DD#2 and her family in Auckland. We are fortunate to have family to share the day with. We haven't seen them since October so we are "counting the sleeps" now, as the time gets nearer.
Haven't done much about decorating the house this year,as we plan to be away, but I was delighted to find that the wall hanging, started many years ago and finished last month (!) is just the right size to hang over the fire screen !
I hope that those who live in the snow storm areas are safe and well, it looks as if many will have a white Chirstmas..Our weather is still unsettled. It was very hot yesterday but we had a storm today with thunder and lightening and a huge drop in temperatures.. Hopefully it will be more settled later in the week.
Wishing you happy days.