Sunday, November 28, 2010

Friday, November 26, 2010

And That's Why There's A Christmas Day

When I was, oh, about 8 or 9 years old, I started attending church with my new best friend, Lauri. Her mother would haul any or all of us seven kids that wanted to go along with her own four. Well over 40 years later, Lauri is still my bestest friend in the whole-wide world and I love her mom as I loved my own.

I have fond memories about that time in my life, and one of those was a Christmas program I was part of. My Sunday School teacher's name was Edith Darling, and on the printed program we were listed as "Edith and Her Darlings." I have never forgotten the song we performed, even sang it to my girls when they were little.

Each of us was assigned a letter (I was T, Lauri was R) and held it up as we sang our verse:

C is for the Christ Child, born upon this day
H for Herald Angels in the sky
R means Redeemer
I means Israel
S is for the stars that sine so bright
T is for three Wise Men, they who traveled far
M is for the manger where He lay
A's for all He stands for
S means Shepherds came

And that's why there's a Christmas Day

Jim Reeves sings it best.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Turkey and Clover Leaf Rolls

I actually did what I set out to do, get the turkey in the oven so we can get it carved and ready for tomorrow, and make two batches of dough for our traditional clover leaf rolls, go me! Or, I should say, "go us" because my hubby was at my side the entire time! I wish I could have gotten photos, but we were both elbow-deep in dough, so I did the next best thing.

Bagged and in the oven, breast-side down for the juiciest turkey, evah!

There are actually two bowls of dough rising, hubby did one and I did one. I can't wait to taste the first one, fresh out of the oven. The recipe I use is the closest I've found to my dad's, which was filed away in his head, a flavor that brings me close to my father's memory. We'll be making my mom's sweet potatoes, one of the triggers that brings her memory closer to the surface as well.

I use Betty Crocker's recipe for Refrigerator Roll Dough

My dad used to put the entire Thanksgiving meal together for our large family (7 kids w/spouses, kids, and friends), and the first one without him took our entire family pulling together, each making something we learned from him. There will still be a few things missing as we all can't be together, cornbread dressing being at the forefront; the sister who makes it may not be with us much longer.

This will be a time to catch up with those we never seem to see enough of, for farewells and getting to know the newer members of our family (a brand-new nephew!). I'm looking forward to this year's gathering of family and friends, because through sadness and joy, gatherings such as this reminds me how very grateful I am to be blessed with so much love!

Have a meaningful Thanksgiving, everyone!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Stormy Weather

Click on image to enlarge

I came across this poem the other day and it spoke straight to my heart. I snapped this picture from my back door just this morning, and when I uploaded it, I thought the two should meet.

Can't remember where I found this, but I appreciate its message...

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Cookie Exchange

Photos by Dawn Walker

My niece hosted a Christmas cookie exchange last year and has announced she's going to do it again this year! We had a lot of fun putting ours together last year, so I'm looking forward to seeing how we'll top it.

My Peanut Butter Cookies, photo by Dawn

My Wedding Cookies, photo by Dawn 

Both recipes were taken from my tried and true Betty Crocker cookbook, a wedding present of over 30 years ago from my life-long best-friend Lauri. I can't tell you how many recipes from this one book I've used through the years.

My daughter Dawn photographed the cookies and created recipe cards which we shared with the group.

We packaged them up in Christmasy goodie bags and attached award-type ribbons (see first photo) I bought on sale (super cheap) at Michael's.


It was well-worth the extra effort because they were a hit! We enjoyed everyone's cookies just as much (the home-made ones, never occurred to me people would actually use store-bought).

This time my niece and I talked about including cupcakes and things like pumpkin bread. I like that idea because, really, there were tons of cookies and it would have been nice to mix it up a bit with other goodies (not a complaint, just an idea). And with everyone watching their waistlines (me, not so much, but it's coming), maybe we can even find a good Weight Watcher's recipe and provide the points.

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

My Own URL and Some Organization

My daughter Dawn gifted me with my own URL a while back and I never did anything with it. She surprised me the other day by pointing my Tumblr it! Thank you, Dawn, I feel all official now!

While I'm on the subject of my awesome daughters, I want to thank Valerie once again for organizing our DVDs. We pulled the set of drawers and matching cabinet from the living room and moved them into my bedroom because they seemed more at home there along side the eclectic beachy-buttony decor.

We weren't sure what we were going to store our DVDs on, so I was pumped when I came across some bamboo and metal racks at Costco. I bought two of them, assembled them and tried them out for size. Much to my delight I discovered I could actually get four of those suckers to fit on either side of the fireplace! So Valerie and headed over to Costco and bought six more, set them up and while we yacked with my sister Martha, Valerie unpacked the boxes and bins and put everything in place.

This is the shelving before it was discovered
I had it stacked wonky, but you get the idea

The shelves are nothing fancy, but they sure look hecka better than the stacks we had goin' on. We all agree, they open up the living room and actually make it look extra wide. Since the DVDs aren't very pretty to look at, we're hoping to install some type of cover, be it fabric or something along the lines of those drawstring shades made of wood, straw or bamboo. Whatever we decide we're just happy to have finally done something with that wall. Yay, us!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Plenty of Buttons

One of my favorite thrift stores in my neck of the woods is "Class 'N' Trash," usually takes some digging around to find the good stuff. But having made friends with the owners over the years, things are sometimes put aside for moi. (I know, huh?!)

I especially like it when I walk in to find boxes being unpacked, yum. When this empty lamp was pulled out, at first I wasn't interested. But, being the great salesperson the female persuasion half of the business is she told me what a nifty thing it would be if I "filled it with all those buttons you're always buying from me!"

So I did.