Friday, December 31, 2010

New Year Greetings

I'm not a huge fan of the New Year holiday. Personally I think the song, Auld Lang Syne is one of the most depressing songs I've ever heard. I'm also not one for resolutions, I've made them in the past and by Jan 31 they're totally forgotten. But if I were so inclined to make any resolutions, I'd strive to be better organized and kinder to others. What if any resolutions are you making?I've been very blessed to have a loving family and true friends in my life. I wish for everyone to have a Blessed New Year.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Christmas Re-cap

This was the best Christmas ever. It was a handmade holiday here and although there were a few unfinished gifts it was a complete success. There were leg warmers....


hats.....and so much more....

There was a letter from Santa inviting the 'kid' to continue her hard work and someday she may be asked to join his Astro Elves at the North Pole. We all know Santa depends on the Astro Elves for his once a year flight...right?? ;)
He knows she is studying astronomy so he gave her a special gift.
There were gifts left from Santa and we send special heartfelt thanks to him for his generosity. We believe in Santa Magic!
It was a special Christmas and I don't want the holidays to end this year. For a little while we could forget the struggles and bask in the warmth of family and the True Meaning of Christmas. Hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas.

Friday, December 24, 2010

One More Sleep....

Like a small child, I'm anxious for tomorrow morning. I refuse to re-visit this past year tonite (or even today with a very sick husband) but will instead focus on the True Meaning for this holiday. We have very few gifts and we're still struggling, however, just like the Whos down in Whoville of Dr. Seuss's classic, How the Grinch Stole Christmas we will enjoy the day with family/friends in spite of it all.
I wish for everyone to have a very Merry Christmas and enjoy the Miracle.
"God Bless Us Everyone"

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Two More Sleeps

Two more sleeps till the Big Day and I'm still elbow deep in cookie dough. This makes two weeks worth of cookie baking. I'm all cookie-ed out. But we have tins and tins of cookies in the pantry. Today was the day for gingersnaps and the good ole standby sugar cookies.The youngest was here to help whip those babies on the cookie sheets.
Several sheets full of yummy goodies.

I am a cookie cutter collector. I have no idea why, I just like to collect cookie cutters (I also use them). Holiday and everyday cutters, doesn't matter I love 'em all. The last ones to jump in the cookie bowl are the teeny tiny cutters. Great for using up that last bit of dough.
We finished with an entire cookie sheet of bite size goodies. Wrapping is finished. Cookies are baked. Breakfast casserole will be done tomorrow. I'm missing something.......oh yeah....the unfinished knitting. Oh well, there's always next year :).

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Three more sleeps....

I haven't left blogland, just been busy. Elbow deep in cookie dough and knee deep in wrapping paper. Still finishing gifts and it appears there are three gifts that will be given on the needles. I hereby state ALL knitted gifts for next year will be finished by Dec 1st 2011. hrmph! (You may want to mark that on your calendar and remind me Dec 2nd 2011 when I'm moaning about unfinished gifts)
A finished hat gifted in the nick of time . This was for our granddaughter and her mom loved it. I also made some really cool crocheted food stuff and completely forgot to take pics.
Nine pans of homemade sweet rolls were also on my agenda. As if I didn't have enough to do.
Some down time was spent watching the daughters play Wii. The youngest is attempting to box.
Our eldest daughter having a grand time laughing at her sister's silly antics.
Time is running out and the big day will be over all too soon. As of this writing, the husband is complaining of a sore throat, chills etc. This blogger is in denial of her own scratchy throat and chills. Say it isn't so.........

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

A Fun Meme

I read this at Chan's Place and enjoyed the meme so much I'm borrowing it.

1. Hot Chocolate or apple cider? Both!
2. Turkey or Ham? Turkey
. Do you get a fake or real-you-cut-it-yourself Christmas tree? Fake. Although I plan to have real next year.
4. Decorations on the outside of your house? Wreath, evergreen under the windows and lights along the roof
5. Snowball fights or sleddin’? Both!!!
6. Do you enjoy going downtown shopping? Not much of a shopper but I remember the fun of shopping downtown when I was a kid.
7. Favorite Christmas song? I have two faves White Christmas and Silent Night
8. How do you feel about Christmas movies?Love 'em especially the classics
9. When is it too early to start listening to Christmas music? Never too early
10. Stockings before or after presents? Before.
11. Go to someone else’s house or they come to you? Go, go, go, and I don’t like it! I love seeing the family but know all too soon we'll be home for the holiday
12. Do you read the Christmas Story? If so when? Christmas Eve before bed
13. What do you do after presents and dinner? Chatter with family
14. What is your favorite holiday smell? Sugar cookies and shortbread
15. Ice skating or walking around the mall? Skating. I’d rather have a beating than go to the mall.
16. Do you open a present or presents on Christmas Eve, or wait until Christmas day? Oh we wait until Santa has delivered the goodies so Christmas day it is
17. Favorite Christmas memory? I have two: One snowy Christmas evening, my dad pulled us on a sled down the middle of the road to my grandparent's farm.
The Christmas (I think I was 7) Santa left my kid size pink kitchen set and a new doll in a cradle
18. Favorite Part about winter? Snow and wearing all my handknits
19. Ever been kissed under mistletoe? mmmm.....can't remember ;)

Sunday, December 05, 2010


There's a willy-nilly kal happenin' on ravelry and there's a sock on my needles. I had every intention on working on them all day today but somehow I was distracted.

I was plugging along and decided to block/steam the box of knitted gifts. Happily steaming away until.....the iron konked. Now mind you, I am in complete denial on anymore hits in this household and that includes another broken appliance. Unplugging and re-plugging, checking the electric outlet, asking the hubby to check the breaker box etc and it refused (yes 'it' refused) to work. Hitting the iron on the ironing board probably did not help but there wasn't any heat or steam so it didn't matter one way or the other and frustration was in control. Keep in mind this little denial game lasted an hour. In the end the iron was still konked.

So the eldest daughter came to the rescue and said I could use her iron. Just as soon as it could be found in her boxes of stuff. For those who don't know, she just moved back home. An hour later and the 'new' iron was up and running. I became bored with that job so I moved onto the next.
Sewing perked my interest and I wanted to sew some pj pants for gifts. All well and good if I had elastic. This meant a trip to the fabric store. An 1 1/2 hour later and I was home with elastic and lost interest in sewing. That will wait until tomorrow...or the next day.....24 hours have passed and this is the progress of the socks that must be finished, wrapped and under the tree by Dec. 24. *sigh*

Then the hubby decided he wanted to make cinnamon hard tack. Sounds great, doesn't it? Except for some unknown reason the husband who can build a house and repair a car cannot function on his own in the kitchen. Which bag of sugar should he use? Do we have food coloring? Which cookbook has the best recipe? Where's the candy thermometer?

We searched for an hour trying to locate the candy thermometer. Correction. We searched for an hour looking for Mr. Gadget's handy dandy fancy schmancy candy thermometer. Needless to say, I've been (falsely) accused of 'hiding' his thermometer. Now just why would I hide a thermometer? I like candy too you know. So a trip to the market was in order (although they don't sell the fancy schmancy one). We now own the el cheapo one as Mr. Gadget calls it.

The day wasn't a complete bust, I do have some lovely cinnamon hardtack to show ;).

p.s. If you happen to see a couple of elves dressed in handknit sweaters please put them under house arrest and contact me immediately. The little rascals have some gifts to finish over here.

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Slowing the Season

This year has been tough in so many ways for this little household. We're taking the tough and turning them into blessings (not an easy task but we're doing our best). Due to unforeseen circumstances (medical saga and it's little games) there will be NO purchased gifts this year therefore changing the holiday dynamics in this house.

So, this year, I'm joining gMarie and others by taking the "Slowing the Season" pledge.

"Please join us in our effort to reduce stress, reduce our carbon footprint, really slow down and enjoy the holiday season this year and in years to come. Exchanging gifts isn’t a big part of holiday preparations. For me and my family, the holidays are not about how much you spend, how much you give or receive, but spending time with loved ones making memories.
In an effort to achieve this goal – I plan to do the following to the best of my ability:

~exchange gifts only with my immediate family
~give handmade gifts with meaning;
~give supplies to make a something that the recipient would enjoy;
~participate in free, local holiday events;
~buy from local artists whenever possible; and
~try to create one new family tradition.

We're just reclaiming the PEACE and JOY of the season.
If you care to join us in slowing the season - feel free to use my badge (or create your own) and add the pledge to your blog. Between now and Christmas share little ways you are reclaiming the Peace and Joy of the Season with you family."

I'm ad-libbing here:
There are a few friends on my gift list.
All of my gifts are handmade).
We have a lot of deep rooted traditions here so I had to give the new tradition a lot of thought. I called mom and we came up with a plan; we're attending Christmas Eve Candlelight Service with my 90 yr old grandmother at her church. Mom and I are taking cookies and tea to her home afterwards so the family can visit. She doesn't know it yet and she will be surprised and delighted.

In spite of the trials and tribulations this past year found necessary to bestow on this house, we are blessed. I wish for everyone to slow down, breathe in the Christmas Air and have a peaceful and blessed holiday.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving

Life has been a roller coaster (and still moving) this year and yet I'm counting my blessings. I have my little family who make me laugh in spite of it all, my very dear friends (and you know who you are) who are there no matter the 'storm damage,' and I have my Faith. We will celebrate this blessed day with my parents, grandmother, a family friend and our beautiful daughters.

I Wish Everyone a Happy Thanksgiving. ENJOY!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Package delivered

Specs picked up Chem-girl at the college. I received a text saying as much at 4 pm. It read something like this, "the package has been picked up and will be delivered at approximately 7:30 pm."
Traffic was heavy leaving the city but they arrived safe and sound at 7:54 pm. Dinner was on the table when they arrived. Crock pot steak and gravy, mashed potatoes, green beans, rolls and a coffee cake for dessert. Home cookin' at it's finest as she said.
She's happy to be home and while Miss Molly doesn't appear to be thrilled, she's actually ecstatic to have her owner home.

The holiday is fast approaching and we will be quite busy in the next few days.
I'm up early to begin the holiday cooking. One of the little things in life that I do enjoy is early morning. Nothing like stepping outside in my pjs on a cold brisk morning to bask in the quiet.

I'm off to bake pumpkin pies and prepare the stuffing for TJ Turkey (he prefers to be 'dressed' you know ;).

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Decorating in Style

Life has been in the way of...well?...Life but we're muddling through in spite of it.
We're hard stock Appalachian folk so what's a gal to do but pull up the boot straps and start over (although me thinks the boots are hip length these days....*sigh*).

During a normal holiday year we decorate after Thanksgiving. We threw that to the wind and started the decorating marathon early. It's a mess but we're beginning to see the light(s). Look closely and you can see a certain cat in the picture. I missed getting the photo of Missy Prissy falling from the box that was teetering....*snicker*. Mr. Bettis didn't miss it though and promptly arrived for damage control and to play a quick game of chase the cat (eyeroll).

Friday, November 19, 2010

...can see clearly now

Red sky in the morning, sailor's warning...and that's been the motto around here on a daily basis.
The sky belies the daily events around here but I must admit I like the picture anyway.

This is a rather small and insignificant mess in the scheme of Life. Miss Aurora occasionally gets into my yarn bags and carries yarn to an undetermined location. Unbeknownst to me this skein hit a load of unwashed laundry and hit the washing machine. It is now clean but totally destroyed and I'm hoping I have enough yarn to finish the project.
Mr. Bettis is off the hook on this one but the destroyed umbrella is another story.

It takes days to put up the Christmas tree. Hubby wanted a live tree but that's not happening this year and I know Chan will have something to say about that ;). Given our luck this year, I'm sure it's a wise thing to skip a live tree.
Miss Phoebe has attitude and she's not the least bit happy to move for the sake of decorating.

The eldest DD had a much needed eye appointment. Apparently when one fails the eye test miserably, glasses are made within an hour -_-.
She can see clearly now and looks so smart ;). The computer and cell phone have her undivided attention now that she can actually see to read.
We're gearing up for the holidays. Not too certain how they're going to fare but not much we can do about it. So here goes.....
When do you decorate?

Sunday, November 07, 2010

There's no place like home...

Busy is an understatement around here right now but time was on our side for some family time this weekend.
First up was the homecoming football game. Always a great time with friends and family. Chem-girl arrived safe and sound from her second home (college) to attend as an alumni.

Our home school won the game and so the festivities began.

Daughter #1 joined in the fun when work allowed. She's the one wrapped in the afghan because good ole mom wouldn't turn up the heat in order to save money ;).

By the way for the knitters out there, the afghan is the Rambling Rows by Cottage Creations. Excellent pattern and a fun knit (warm too). I can't seem to find the link but for the ravelers out there it's an easy find in the pattern section on Ravelry.
Time was found for a good game of Hands and Foot.

There was some girl knitting time and like a bunch of hens, we chattered and laughed while catching up on the family news. Cooking and baking produced chicken casserole, roast dinner, cookies and potato candy. Yum.

Chem-girl is back at school, DD #1 has a busy week and DH begins another week of work. As for me, it's a time to reflect and catch up on the never ending laundry and cleaning around here as well as some busy time with DD #1. We're looking forward to family time at Thanksgiving. Only 2 + more weeks.
I must also find time for gift knitting....or else put an ad in the paper for some knitting elves ;).

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Eye Candy Treats

Halloween came and went and somewhere along the line I missed it. Of course about the only thing we really miss are the kids' treat bags filled with candy so we can get drunk on chocolate :).

I'm late posting this new arrival of eye candy. The wind was blowing hard last week and look what blew into my mailbox, a lovely birthday gift from Jessi. Two skeins of her beautiful dyed yarn and as soon as I decide on a pattern it will be cast on. Also included, a cute set of knitted notions and labels for my handknits. There were two pencils but one is sharpened and already in use.

Forgive the glare, I just couldn't get a decent picture without it.
Also included were these adorable handmade stitch markers. Aren't they cute? I have a standing order if she ever re-opens her shop.
Thank you so much Jessi.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Dream a little dream.....

It's been a roller coaster ride here and I'll spare details to the public.

I've been trying to focus on my passions, knitting and spinning, and while doing so I thought about why I turn to them when I'm stressed. For me, it's the soothing sound of the needles, click, click click. The feel of the soft wool through my fingers. The whirl of the wheel and how amazing it is (even in this day and age) to produce a lovely skein of yarn no matter how imperfect.

In the meantime when life hands me lemons I will turn to dreamsicle ice cream ;).

What do you focus on when stressed? Why?

Thursday, October 21, 2010

He's on the Run

Mr. Bettis has a problem, he sprained his right foot. Don't even ask how 'cos I have no idea.

He has pills that he mistakes for treats (eyeroll here). He's also on bedrest....uh...yeah...try that one. As the saying goes around here, "ain't never gonna happen."

All was fine until the squirrel climbed the tree in the backyard and the neighbor's dog 'jumped bail' (as we call it) and entered Mr. B's domain. Bedrest went out the window and the big oaf was racing and ripping through our yard while I'm yelling like a banshee warrior. I'm sure it's quite entertaining for anyone within earshot. On the other hand, they're probably accustomed to it.
Mr. B will be up to his usual antics in no time flat *sigh*.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Apples to apples

I received a few things on Saturday but the hubby confiscated them until yesterday so I could open them on my birthday.
First up this hilarious card from G. Oh my gosh, I laughed out loud when I pulled the card from the envelope.

Thank you Gaylen for the hearty laugh and birthday wishes :D.

Next up was a thoughtful and delightful gift from Grace. A comical book of knitting that is sure to bring a smile and another good laugh.
And look at the little gnome. I've wanted to knit one of these for awhile but I've never gotten around to getting one finished.
I've dubbed him, Mr. Apple due to his clothing choice and the apples that accompanied him. Thank you Grace. He is perched on the antique cookstove keeping watch.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Let Me Eat Cake

It's my birthday :D.
My eldest daughter gave this gift to me, a trifle dish and the ingredients to make my own birthday dessert.
I've wanted an excuse to make this dessert for a long time so here it is....

Mocha Tiramisu. It's resting in the fridge right now.
Thank you DD, Love ya!

Saturday, October 16, 2010


It's a beautiful fall day today and I had every intention on enjoying it. However Mr. Murphy (as in Murphy's Law) had another idea.

DH threw a load in the washer, left only to return to the clothes soaking wet. What?? So he tried the spin cycle again. Nothing. Next thing I knew there was smoke. "Houston? We have a problem. Shut down."

So here it is, a wet load of laundry and I'm debating on wringing it by hand as my ancestors did or slamming the lid and saying the heck with it all. I'm opting for the LOUD SLAM! hrmph!

Not to say too much here but due to the last 2 yrs of a dying economy the money pig residing at this house starved to death so there's no crystal ball sighting of a new washer. Add in the ongoing medical saga...*sigh* and Life just continues to spiral downward.

A definite bright spot is a 'kid' who remembers my birthday, snags a card from the card drawer before she leaves for college and sends it well in advance of the actual birthday.

The college DD wrote a beautiful message and included a 'coupon' for a homemade meal and handmade ring markers when she gets home. I can't wait :D. Thank you DD, love ya!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Let the Party Begin

My birthday hasn't arrived yet however that hasn't stopped friends and family from sending packages and cards :D. Unlike me who's still playing catch-up with the Post Office.

I'll begin with Chan's package that arrived today. Mr. Bettis was sniffing the box before I had it opened. How did he know there was something for him?

Sure enough there was something, scrumptous cookies just for the gang. They were begging and if I could've juggled the camera and the treats there would've been pics.

I gave them the treats so I could open the rest of the package in peace (just like kids you know). A beautiful...correction...drop-dead gorgeous skein of Creatively Dyed yarn named for my hometown. Red, purple, blue and of course PANK, how perfect is that? This is begging to be cast on and I'm concerned I won't allow it time to ferment with the rest of the stash...LOL

A bag of Lindnor Truffles Halloween treats was included although Mr. Bettis thought they also belonged to him. See his nose? I had a tough time getting him away from the candy so I could take the picture.
Lindnor Truffles are my favorite candy ever!!

About the card; I was on the phone with my mother (a Basset Hound care-taker) and when I opened the card I laughed so hard I was crying.

This is so perfect from Chan, the Knight and the Girls. Thank you so much for the wonderful gifts. Sending pooch hugs and kisses (and my own hugs) to You and the Crew.

More to come tomorrow.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

A Birthday Son

Thirty-seven years ago today, my eldest son was placed into my arms and it was love at first sight. We grew up together through his childhood and somehow we survived the teen years ;).
Football, baseball, swim meets and band occupied our years. The years flew by and now he is a husband and father.
To My Son-You are loved because of the little boy you were, the man you've become and the son you will always be.


My son and his daughter last year

P.S. I know you appreciated my attempt to sing the Happy Birthday song early this morning. Hope it stays with you all day ;).

Monday, October 04, 2010

A dance, a frog and a flamingo

It's been awhile since I posted anything about 'The Kid" so I'll give a little update.

She attended a Garba dance with some of her dorm friends. One of her friends was kind enough to lend her a beautiful traditional dress. The dorm floor was bustling as they got ready for their "prom" as they called it.
She called later to tell us how much she enjoyed the evening event.

Her GPA qualified for her induction into the National Society of Collegiate Scholars so of course we attended the ceremony on Sunday afternoon. It was a short nice ceremony which gave a little more visiting time.
She insisted on a pose with Jim Henson and Kermit on campus after the ceremony. She hasn't been off campus for 4 weeks and it will be another 5 weeks until we can get her home. We took her for a stroll in a local mall and re-stocked her snack supply.

Our conservative thinker in her funky cozy 60's style room. Ya gotta love those flamingo lights....LOL

I do have a few finished knitting projects but they're for another post.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Friends & Fiber

Sipping my coffee anxiously waiting to leave for a fiber festival. Chan will be there and although I've talked to Anita on the phone this will be my first meet-up with her.
I am so excited and can hardly wait.

I'll leave you with a small sample of finished knitting. An Annis from Knitty only in mini form. It only took a day to make this little baby and I love it. There will be more on the needles.

I'm off here now to have some fun and for the rest of my friends who couldn't make it, I'll be thinking of you. Maybe next year?
p.s. Mr. Bettis's attorney is hereby on notice just in case he can't behave. Since you can't be here to meet up with us Jessi, keep an ear out for a frantic BARK! ;)

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Trick or treats

It's a good thing I have friends. I'm a bit of a scatter brain these days and this post has been a long time in coming. Thanks Nic ;).

A while back we entered a contest on Lapdog Creations blog and we WON! Bright Bites dental dog treats were the prize.

Mr. Bettis & Gang were sniffing the box before I even opened it. Notice he's licking his chops and I haven't opened the bags yet. I've never seen the gang so excited over a box.
Bright Bites included a large dog collar (which was put on Mr. B immediately) and a book of 101 dog tricks. I had to laugh because teaching Mr. B tricks is a feat in and of itself but we're going to try. A lovely handwritten note was also enclosed.

Miss Gypsy pretending she's not really interested but she had her snout in there right before I snapped this one.
They LOVED the treats. Thank you Nic and fur-babies and a special thank you to Bright Bites for the fantastic product and extra goodies.
Miss Molly truly loved the treat. She's a bit pouty these days. Her owner is in college and she spends her days with her favorite toy and trying her best to keep Mr. Bettis in line *sigh*. Sometimes it's a lo-o-ong day around here.