Wednesday, December 31, 2008

So much to say!

I'm back! I wasn't actually gone anywhere but just couldn't be here.

It is such a busy, but wonderful, time of year. That was part of the problem. The biggest reason I haven't been around, though, is that we lost our power very briefly early on Sunday morning. Thankfully, it came right back on but a couple hours later we realized that it wasn't full power. We continued to have flickering lights and brown outs until late Tuesday night.

We thought it best to leave the computer turned off.

Clarence and I both went through withdrawals, with tremors and all ;-)

So, to update a bit...We had a beautiful Christmas. Lots of love, family, food, and fun.

Oh, and I must tell you about Julianne's gift to me.

Last year, Clarence's mom had just taught Julianne how to read a crochet pattern and she was working hard at practicing her skills. She made me the small runner shown above to use on top of an old desk that belonged to Clarence's grandparents, which we now have. I was so touched.

This year she decided to try making me a table runner for the island. I'm told she had a plan.

Eight rows a day would get it done by Christmas Eve. Definitely doable, she decided.

Until she cut her thumb and couldn't crochet for a few days.

And then her mean mom grounded her from reading and crocheting until she got her room cleaned. Another day or two lost.

Then she found a mistake several rows after making it and had to tear out and re-do. She had to crochet like a maniac whenever she got a chance to make up for lost time. When we stopped at Walmart a couple weeks ago, Clarence gave her his phone and left her in the car crocheting until she got too cold to continue. She doesn't think she'll do that again. I tend to take too long when I get inside Walmart.

She did end up finishing it on Christmas Eve. I am amazed at her efforts and skill. And perseverance.

Here's a closer shot. This is her first attempt at fillet crochet.

I am a very blessed mama.
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Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas!

The stockings are hung by the TV with care-we have a woodstove, not a fireplace so the TV stand ended up being where the girls put the holders. We're such non-conformists. But wait! Mom gave us one of those fire DVDs. So the TV really is the only fireplace we're ever gonna have in this house. So much for our non-conformity.

For the first time, I wrapped the gifts before Christmas Eve after the girls are in bed. What a relief to have that all done. I can actually go to bed before 1 a.m.

So all that was left to do was wish all my bloggy friends a wonderful Christmas, filled with love and laughter, joy and peace. And figgy pudding if you like it.

May the Christ child fill your hearts and homes with his love and peace as you celebrate his birth.

Monday, December 22, 2008


Mrs. Rabe from Creekside Cottage tagged me for a meme. I've never done one before and I'll apologize in advance for being boring.

Here are the rules:

*Go to the 6th picture folder in your documents.

*Find the 6th picture in your 6th folder.

*Pray that you remember what it is about.

*Blog about it.

*Tag 6 people to do the same.

I think I've already blogged about this box. It is a cheese box that I covered with wallpaper sample pieces to use as a container for a gift. The votive holder next to it is one that Julianne made. They were part of a gift for the girls' former piano teacher, who really likes lighthouses.

I have no idea who to pass this on to, so if you are interested in trying this or drawing a blank on what to post about today, consider yourself tagged!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Surviving the snow storm

I am so thankful Clarence was able to figure out what was wrong with his tractor recently and get it running again.

Although 8-12 inches of snow was predicted for our area, we seem to have ended up on the low end of the prediction. Whew!

Clarence started plowing last night after work. The tractor has lights but, as it grew dark, his tires were starting to spin on the ice that is under the snow. He decided to finish today, when he could put chains on the tires in the daylight.

Julianne was sweet and bundled up to take all these pictures for me. She knows my aversion to snow and cold. Plus, she likes being allowed to use my camera.

Clarence is still plowing now, trying to get the snow pushed as far out of the way as possible. We're supposed to get more tonight. And almost every day next week. The news said that we could have a whole year's worth of snow by Christmas. Be still my heart.
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Friday, December 19, 2008

The Christmas story

You know how you notice an interesting sounding blog in someone's blog list? And you click on it to check it out? Then you see another one that sounds good on their sidebar? So you click again and pretty soon you have no idea what trail you have followed to land where you are-but you've enjoyed the journey, right?

That is how I ended up discovering a new blog this week. Today I went back to this new-to-me blog and the girls and I watched his video telling the Christmas story. I thought I should share it with any of you who haven't had a chance to see it.

Clicking over and watching it will allow you to see his Last Supper lunchbox, too. Who knew such a thing existed?

I guess I don't get out much.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Homeschool homework

We've managed to get behind on our history so are trying to play catch up now. As a result, we just got to Joseph yesterday.

I think it kinda worked out for us, though.

The assignment for "younger" students focused on Joseph's coat of many colors. I thought the girls would like to do the "younger" work, as well as their own. I was right!

The younger set is supposed to make a sugar cookie coat of many colors and decorate it with frosting. How come I don't remember ever getting an assignment that required making cookies when I was in school?

They used toothpicks to decorate their cookies. Hey, I had to challenge them somehow, didn't I?

Of course, there was the rest of the batch to roll out and bake so we now have some Christmas cookies, too. As if we needed more sugar around here this week.

Today we moved on to Hammurabi. No cookies for him. I've decided I like Joseph best of anyone we've studied so far. ;-)
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Friday, December 12, 2008


You Should Have a Pink Christmas Tree

For you, the holidays represent a time of friendship and sharing.

You're happy as long as you're spending time with the people you care about.

You are passionate about the holidays, and that start of the holiday season makes you very excited.

You sometimes go a bit overboard in your celebrations. You just can't help it!

Passionate, easily excited, sweet, giving, love, friendship, sensitive, caring

Your pink tree would look great with: More pink!

You should spend Christmas Eve watching: The Muppet Christmas Carol

What you should bake for Santa: Rice krispie treats with red and green food coloring

I am cracking up over this.

I love pink but never, ever, never would want a pink Christmas tree.

Nor do I want to watch The Muppet Christmas Carol.

And I happen to know that Santa prefers several other types of cookies over rice krispie treats with red #40 so I'd whip up chocolate chip or peanut butter cookies.

Other than that, though, I'm sure it's spot on. ;-)

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

We are Santa's elves

Every year, our co-op group gets together for a Christmas party. We have a tradition of exchanging homemade Christmas ornaments with each other that apply in some way with one of the books we've studied during that year.

Since our co-op friends aren't aware of my blog, I can share this year's ornament with all of you.

The girls started working on them the other night while watching Charlie Brown Christmas. You can see how attentive to detail Allison is when the Peanuts gang is on TV.

We've made these ornaments before, just not for our co-op group. This time, Julianne decided to try small silver beads instead of little pearls on some of them.

Now Julianne is preoccupied with Charlie Brown and his gang. "Sure, Mom, I'll hold up a completed ornament-but I don't have to look your way while I do."

The girls chose these ornaments because this year we read Number the Stars with our group.

It's hard to capture how pretty they really are. The lights on the tree make them sparkle. The bonus is that they are quite simple to make and don't require expensive supplies, so rather than making one ornament per family, the girls want to make an ornament for each child.

Now I can't get that "We are Santa's elves. We are Santa's elves..." song from Rudolph out of my mind.
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Sunday, December 7, 2008

Change of plans

We set off for Greenfield Village Saturday morning, driving both cars as far as town, then planning to leave one there so we could split up and go in different directions when we returned.

It was a great plan. Until I tried to stop for a yellow light and proceeded to keep rolling through the intersection. We were getting a light snowfall and the road was slick. Thankfully, no one else moved and I didn't get hit but it made us reconsider the wisdom of driving almost two hours to Dearborn. It made us think seriously about replacing the tires on the car, too, especially after getting stuck in the driveway the other day.

We ended up going to a Christmas store and taking several shots of the girls there. As we walked from the parking lot to the stores (it's like a little village), I found myself thankful that we didn't go to Greenfield Village after all. It was very cold yesterday!

This is not the winning photo since some people I send cards to read this blog. I want them to be surprised. ;-)

We took our pictures, then headed over to Sam's Club where we got a couple new tires installed while our Christmas cards were being printed. Nice to have both those things off the list.

Now the envelope addressing begins!
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Friday, December 5, 2008

Updates on various things

Wow, I managed to post every day in November, then I took this whole week off. I didn't quite plan it that way but I've felt less than 100% all week and something had to give.

The tractor is running sporadically. Clarence got it going and was able to plow our six-inch snowfall the other day. Now it won't run again. I think he's going to try a new battery next, or something with the alternator, or something well, never mind. I really didn't understand anything after "new battery".

Belle is still on meds since his UTI wasn't cleared up last week. He will have to get re-checked next week and then we'll see if we have to make any further decisions. He continues to spend his days inside with us and his nights in the garage. He got banished to the garage when he started feeling well enough to come up to my bedroom early in the morning and wake me up. It brought back memories of why he started living outside in the first place years ago. I was thinking it was just my pregnancy and not wanting the litter box around. It's all coming back to me now.

I've been doing some sewing when I get a chance. I got some fabric and a .99 pattern for a skirt and jacket on Black Friday. I'm going to try to get a pattern for a shirt to go with it this weekend.

We are planning to go to Greenfield Village tomorrow to attempt to get a picture of the girls for our Christmas cards. I know, I know, it's getting late to get them done but we're gonna try anyhow.

Whew! Lots of rambling, no pictures. Sorry about that-I'll try to use pictures in my next post, which will, hopefully, be sooner than five days from now.