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Sunday, December 30, 2007

Last Christmas Picture, Promise!

I posted a picture of this quilt awhile back when I was working on it.But here it is all done and in Milisa's hot little hands Christmas Eve. I started this quilt about three and half or four years ago.I knew she liked these colors at that time.But was worried that she might have tired of them by now. She said she liked those colors still and loved the quilt.

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Read Any Good Books Lately?

Anyone reading any good books they can recommend? I love to read,mostly novels not crazy about mushy love stories but but I'll read about anything. I listen to books on tape or CD while I'm sewing but also always have a book next to my rocking chair ( MC Beaton's "Deadly Dance" at the moment ) to read in the evening.

And I'm about to start listening to "Three Cups of TEA". It comes highly recommended by my sis. She says she thinks I'll like it since I used to live in Iran. We'll see.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Friday Flashback

It's the middle of the winter how about a day at the beach.

Here's me with my cousins leaning on my Aunt Belle's convertible at Lake Okoboji in NW Iowa. I'm the older girl in the yellow shorts and red shoes. Check out my cousin Steve in the middle with the shorts and cowboy boots. How cute. My cousin Keith (the only dark haired one )and I were buds.We spend a lot of time playing together. He's now a High School coach in FL.. The blue behind the trees is the lake.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Cute little ones

Cuties- When my niece and nephew filled out the application to adopt a child one of the questions was would you accept twins .They said "sure" not really thinking there was much of a chance of getting two. Guess what ? Two years ago they brought home this adorable pair.Cecilia and Patrick. Are they too cute or what?

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

More Christmas Pictures

Our son Mick ,his wife Kathy(with Jack) and Cheri, Brent's wife (the girls mom).
More to come!

A Holly Jolly Christmas

Some Christmas Eve pictures.Our three and only granddaughters Jena, Cristi, and Milisa their out numbered more than two to one by the boys.
Our son Brent pretending to pout because he wants a cig. His 2007 New Years resolution was to quit smoking this year. Yeah, he waited until the last week of the year.
And last Susie our senior dog Susie none to pleased to be wearing that Santa hat.

Saturday, December 22, 2007


I honestly don't understand a Grinch.. Yes, I know some people that don't have family can feel lonely and others get depressed around Christmas. But to be grouchy and belligerent and spread the gloom makes no sense to me. On a popular forum I visit one Grinch went on two tirades one about her son and DH eating all the cookies she baked and another about a difficult SIL. Now maybe the cookies were suppose to be for the Church social,I don't know. But to berate your child and husband on a public forum I thought she was horrid. I baked snicker doodles yesterday and son and DH put a pretty big dent in them .My reaction"they like my cookies, they really like my cookies" I know,I know some will say I sound like a Pollyanna. Trust me I'm not. But I do try to keep thing in perspective. They didn't burn down the house, wreck the car, or lose the dog,they ate some cookies.
So bake some more. And rent Steven Baldwins movie " Midnight Clear"

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Dec. Birthday People

We have three birthdays this month. DH, granddaughter Cristi and grandson Tyler.

Here are pictures of two. DH won't let me post his picture"too old" LOL

All the Norwegian genes came through to Tyler as you can see. He's 6ft 2in looks like young Viking. He works in construction for his grandfather on his moms side.

Cristi's b-day is Dec.25 thus her name Cristianna Noel (she has a younger sis born on Halloween.What are the odds?). She's is in college studying to be a missionary. Her hair is naturally curly and this is the first time I'd seen her wear it straight like this. I told her she looks like a beautiful Indian princess

Monday, December 17, 2007

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas

We got a ton of snow Sat. I love snow don't know if it's my Norwegian ancestry or what .But I always get excited when be have a big snow. When our children were young I'd always run around waking everyone up to see the first snow of the year. I like to hunker down make soup and hot chocolate and read or watch the movie Dr. Zhivago. DH thinks I'm insane he's a summer soldier. He can work outside in 90 degree weather in long sleeves happy as a clam. Were as I can't take much heat.
The dogs loved the snow too. Well until I put this sweater on Buddy is that a sad little face or what. Here's another one of him pouting under patio chair while Beechy and Jack romp in the snow. Right after taking this picture I gave in took the sweater off and he joined in the fun. The last is a close up of Beechy my shaggy dog a real sweety.Soooo much calmer than those rascal Russells.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Tacoma 1960's

Vicky ask me what the Tacoma Zoo was like in the 1960's. My answer " duh.. I don't remember" But I did find these pictures taken getting ready to go and at the Zoo. , In the first photo sons #2 and #3 at the Zoo, second photo me (big hair thanks to DMIL talking me into a perm ) trying to shoe an uncooperative child with a little help from the cat before we take off, last photo son #1 just before we leave for the Zoo. Don't know why we didn't take more pictures at the Zoo like maybe with the animals. But I'm thinking we had our hands full with wrangling three little boys. Our oldest son loved to bolt when ever he saw an opening . Anyone that's read Stephen Kings "Pet Cemetery "can appreciate that fun game. I used to have nightmares of him running out into traffic. That's probably why he and I are not in the Zoo picture he's bolted and I'm chasing.
But back to not remembering much about the Tacoma Zoo, in my defense we've been in three continents, nine countries and a lot of Zoos. So I started to think, what do I remember about Tacoma? Tacoma was my husbands first Air Force assignment after we were married .We were there five years the longest we ever lived anywhere until we retired. The first house I don't remember the street name it was a cute two bedroom with a very nice living room that had a huge great wood burning fireplace. The problem was the house was not insulated well. I think it had orginally been built for a summer vacation or hunting cabin. We had to sleep in the living room near the fireplace to stay warm. . Before long we moved to a apartment on Pacific Ave. It was very nice and warm but it was second story and we had a growing family. So.... we moved again to a house in Tillicum across the street from a lake. This was my favorite we were just couple blocks from a public beach I could take the kids to.

Just a few of the other things I remember are -Always getting a thrill when I'd see Mt Rainer from my back door(only on a clear day of course :) Kippered Salmon, first time I had it and love it. A short drive to see the Pacific Ocean for the first time. Escalators going up the hill between the streets in down town. Crossing Narrows bridge to have a picnic in a park. The chili dogs had beans in them . And the weather , it rains a lot in Tacoma but when it's nice it's very, very, nice in fact it's perfect. .
It was one of my favorite places we ever lived.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Friday Flashback

Christmas five years ago our cat Peanut was only five months old and as you can see in these photo's he destroyed our Christmas tree. I swear to you this tree was totally decorated.Here he is finishing the job and removing the last couple bulbs. The next thre years I bought real trees thinking they would stand up to him better. After the first year though he seemed mildly interested removing only an occasional decoration. The last picture is Peanut in a shoe box. Someone got a new pair of shoes and the next thing we knew there he was napping in the box. He looked so dorky we had to get a picture.
Last year we went back an artificial tree. The live trees I bought for two years were beautiful Fraziers that hang on to their needles real well I really loved them. But with the last live tree when I dismantled it I found burn marks on the branches and I use the cool lights. Maybe a short in the wiring? I don't know but that was a enough warning for me. Every Christmas we have too many tragic house fires here in the NE for me ignore that warning. Better safe than pretty it's back to the artificial for us.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Some of My Favorite Things

The pine rope, lights and red bows on the picket fence out front is one of my favorite Christmas things. Don't know why it just gives me joy to look at it. And once again my hokey geese They give me joy too. Again don't know why. The little red coat my DDIL bought at a garage sale. I only have one goose dressed up so far I'm trying to decide how to dress the other one I debated between a reindeer or an angel. Any opinions.
Now another question. Our family traditional Christmas Eve dinner is Mexican fare ,taco's, refried beans, etc. OK,OK,OK, I know this is not a common traditional I've never claimed it was. But..... my dear sis (yes you Patty :) makes fun of this and tries to tell me her family tradition of Christmas Eve CHILI is a NATIONAL TRADITION. I beg to differ since she is the only one I know who serves chili on Christmas Eve. So I ask you dear reader do you know anyone that Christmas Eve's tradition is Chili?

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Chritmas Quilts Done!

Happy dance!!!The quilts I've made for Christmas gifts are done,done ,done.Well almost I still have to bind Milisa's but these three are ready to be mailed OK. These are for Lucas and Jordan and my DS and DDIL. The last two weeks I've been slave labor for these quilts working on them night and day. Now I can starting blogging ,baking and decorating. Yea!The last photo is a close up of the raccoon on Story book quilt now he has eyes. I didn't post another picture of the whole Story book quilt because I'm sure everyone is sick and tired of it.

Friday, December 7, 2007

Flash Back Friday- Christmas Past- Christmas Present

Christmas Past-
Photo of my four boys (yes,boys, remember long hair was cool in the 70's)taken Christmas morning 1973. Check out the Brady Bunch garb. And gold carpet.LOL
The little white tree we bought at the base in Spain The Spanish didn't do Christmas trees so it was a mad scramble to get the artificial ones at the BX (base store). Little ones like this were all they had by the time we got there. At least it was better than my neighbors aluminum tree with the rotating colored light. LOL We actually grew fond to the little white tree and kept it for several years ,
Christmas Present-
Lucas 6 and Jordan 17 months our two youngest grandchildren with Santa. As you can see poor little Jordan is not too impressed with the jolly fat man. That Lucas the older boy is getting so handsome. I think he's going to be the next Mario Lopez. Their mom is from Honduras and Lucas has his dad's dark blue eyes and light complexion and his mom's dimples and dark hair .What a cutie.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Package from Holland

I received my bag from Heleen Tue! I just love it. I think it goes quite well with my new winter coat too. She also sent me the cute things from Holland pictured here. As some of you already know I love things dutch so was delighted to receive these. Last spring I decorated my kitchen in blue and white Dutch Delft. I've been collecting dutch patterns ,wooden shoes, windmill, dutch girl carrying water ,etc ,for a wall hanging I plan to make after Christmas. Some of these will be perfect to use in it.
Thanks Heleen.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Thelma Loraine Stevens Myers

DMIL passed away early Wed. She wanted no funeral,no graveside service nothing. She was cremated and her ashes in a container placed in her husbands grave. This is very hard for me being a Catholic and believing we should honor the dead but this is what she wanted.

So I thought I'd write a little something about her on here.

She was born Thelma Loraine Stevens in 1915 in Bysville Ohio. The fourth child of Bertha and Ira Stevens a housewife and coal miner/farmer. When she failed to thrive the Dr.'s decided her mothers milk wasn't good and put her on a bottle. But by that time she was so weak they didn't expect her to live. So they took her down and had a professional photo taken of her with her siblings. Of course she beat the odds and lived 92 more years. I think it was an example of how tough she would show the world she was.

She met and married her first husband George Walter Leimenstoll (Walter) at seventeen.He was ne-er-do-well , playboy from a well to do family from the south. She described him to me as the love of her life and good for nothing but charming women. She told me this was not to diminish the love she felt for her adored second husband the best man she ever knew but simply a different kind of love. What she felt for Walter was the head over heels starry eyed love of a seventeen year old. After two children and ten tremulous years of marriage enduring his drinking, gambling, womanizing he came home one night and ask for a divorce. She said fine.The next day she packed her bags while Walter now sober recanted and begged her to stay. But she refused. She told me she could put up with a lot but she wouldn't stay where she wasn't wanted. With a few belonging in a couple suitcases she took her two children and boarded a train to Ohio. And never looked back. She never received a cent of support from him .

Not one to sit around and feel sorry for herself she immediately applied and got a job at the Goodrich rubber factory in Akron.Where she worked for the next twenty five years. Remember this was the 1940's when single mothers were rare and women's wages sorry. She worked,bought a house and supported her children as good or better that most men at the time. Eight years later in the factory she met a newly divorced man raising two children of his own. Whom I can only describe as the kindest, best man I've ever known. They married,combined their families and built a good life together. Grandpa passed away in 1987. She continued to live on their farm in Eastern Ohio until her death this week..

Rest in peace Grandma you earned it.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Getting There.

The story book quilt I'm making for grandsons Jordan and Lucas is almost done. The quilt and a copy of each of the books will be their Christmas present. Each row represents a children's book Dorothy chose for the Nesting Robin she hosted.

Row#1 The Kissing Hand

#2 Harold and the Purple Crayon

#3 The Giving Tree

#4 Make Way for Ducklings

#5 The Polar Express

If you click on the photo you get a better look. If you look closely you will see a outline of Harold in the upstairs window of the house. I drew it with a fabric marker but I'm afraid it looks more like a monkey than Harold :)

I used two different alphabet fabrics for the borders. I will be using some more of the blue alphabet for the backing too. The top is finished except quilting and the Dragons teeth after a couple unsatisfying attempts with embroidery and rickrack I've decided to do the teeth with purple fabric paint. Which I have yet to purchase.

Tomorrow I plan on starting to machine quilt it (a simple meandering). And hope to be done this weekend. I can see a few mistakes but thankfully Lucas and Jordan are not Quilt snobs :)

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Death and Dying

Sorry for the depressing subject matter today but my 92 year old DMIL is dying of cancer and I thought writing about it might help me deal. The people in my life that have died always went fast, heart attack, stroke,accident,etc. I have never known anyone to die slowly like this. This is so agonizing for the family. She is very bad her extremities are turning purple, she sleeps all the time moaning in her sleep. It upsets me that she's suffering like this even though hospice assures us she's in no pain. We lived in Spain when my mother went through this with my step-father and her sister. I never realized how hard it must have been on her to watch them go like this. And I can't imagine the agony of parents who have children that die like this. I think I would surely break under such grief.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Think Pink!

After raising four boys and having all our bedrooms guy-sie for years. Sports posters, batman sheets, etc. I thought when the youngest moved out I could do the rooms more feminine. Then one son divorced moved back in with grandson and we were back to boy rooms.
So... now that he's remarried and moved out I can do a girly, girly room. Last week my son from KC was visiting and he painted this room for me. As you see VERY pink. The pink checked fabric lobed across the bed I'm going to make a comforter for it. I bought it at the LQS it's 100% cotton but has a sheen to it like polished cotton. And the raggity throw rug is an OLD real Berber rug I bought when we lived in Spain a long time ago. It's just temp until I find a area rug I like.
I know, I know the room is old fashion Colonial/Early American not California chic that's all the rage. But I'm an old fashion girl and this is what I like. Simple and traditional.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Six Sentence Meme

OK, Sophie didn't tag anyone just suggested and I thought it sounded like fun. So here's mine.
Take a book your currently reading and turn to page 161,then read the 6th sentence and share it . Here's mine
"He flipped it open because Tim might be trying to reach him"
Nothing very profound. But hey it's just Dean Koontz novel what do you want LOL

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

The Polar Express.

"The Polar Express" is the fifth book Dorothy picked for the Nesting Robin. Since I was not fond the third book "The Giving Tree" I almost substituted it with "The Little Engine that Could " Glad I didn't since my DDIL has told me The Polar Express is Lucas's favorite movie. Here is what I have for the row. It's suppose to be pages where the train is going through the dark snowy woods with wolves watching. I made one wolf peeking around a tree but it was too dark with the blue back ground and hard to make out. So I'm going to redo it with a white back ground. We have out of town company so don't know when I'll get back to it. Probably Monday.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

How about them Buckeyes!!!

Anyone that lives in Ohio knows that national championships are great and the Rose Bowl is good, but nothing matches the sweet taste of victory over MI. GO BUCKS!

Continuing my quest to have a "Made in China" free Christmas. I decided to make some Pajama pants for the girls in the family. The local quilt shop had some cute bright fabrics on sale. Here's a picture of what what I bought. The smaller pieces will be for trim,pockets and such.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Kay and AJ's new house.

This post is mostly for family and friends that know who I'm talking about .Our #2 son AJ and wife Kay built a new house in Enid this year. They just moved in about six weeks ago.
The first photo is the only one taken after the landscaping was done. For those that know how much the landscaping cost. I assure you there's more than you can see in the picture. Like some good size trees along the drive.
They have three acres of land here.. There is a small area in the back fenced off for the dog and a little privacy when barbecuing, sunbathing and such.
As you can see OK is big sky country,I love it. I love the many big trees we have here in Ohio but I grew up a prarie girl and sometimes miss those wide open spaces and being able to see for miles.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Blue and White

We spent yesterday driving to Eastern Ohio to visit seriously ill DMIL along with our son AJ , his wife Kay, and our youngest son Michael. Kay and AJ drove from Enid OK just for the one day visit and are heading back today. My sweet DDIL brought me these dishes. If you know me very well you know I love blue and white and especially dishes. I took a close up of the cake plate to show the lacy edges.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007


My sis lives in Nebraska and doesn't understand why we rake leaves in the fall. "Daryl has never raked leaves " Well Patty's why. And the lawn service has already been out and picked them up twice. We're not allowed to burn them(not sure why, they do in MI a mile away) Instead they tell us to pile by the street like this . Sometimes these piles get 5 and 6 foot tall. And if your one of the luckey ones the city will come around and pick them up in Nov. Because we live at the VERY edge (next to the last house)of the city our street is usually forgotton. They turn into huge frozen mounds that sit there looking ughly until spring when the city (after many nagging phone calls) comes around and picks them up. Leaving a patch of dead grass next to the street.