Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas...

Quote for the day:
Christmas gift suggestions:
To your enemy, forgiveness.
To an opponent, tolerance.
To a friend, your heart.
To a customer, service.
To all, charity.
To every child, a good example.
To yourself, respect.
~Oren Arnold
It's Christmas Eve...
Today I went grocery shopping for the first time in about 3 weeks!  Between starting back to work after my back injury, taking the trip to Ohio, and then coming home and getting very ill with "the Illness", we were basically out of food in this house!  So today's trip was REALLY necessary...especially since I had to get something to make for Christmas dinner tomorrow for Andy & me.  

We had batted around a couple options regarding Christmas dinner, including 1)  going out to eat;  or 2)  not doing "anything" for Christmas dinner.  After thinking about it, I decided that not having family here this year was no different than in the beginning of our relationship when it was just Andy & me....B.C.  (Before Children!)

Christmas was going to be what I did or did not choose to make of it this year.  

I chose to make a conscious decision to make a semblance of a Christmas dinner...albeit on a smaller scale.  So I went grocery shopping today for Christmas dinner items and for gifts for the neighbors (whew...that was calling it close!).  I even got the ingredients to make a "special" Sunday breakfast for the day after Christmas...MONKEY BREAD!  :)

This evening we decided to go out for a nice steak dinner...really the first "meat" that either of us has eaten for the last couple weeks because of "the I llness" in the house!  LOL

After dinner wecame home and watched some TV, and now I'm relaxing with this...
...the traditional "Christmas Margarita".
What you say?  Margaritas aren't a Christmas tradition????????  WELL...I think they should be!  LOL  The tradition needs to start somewhere...and I'm willing to give of myself sacrificially to help it get started right here...right now!  What do you say, People?  Stand up and be counted!!!  :)

My friend and co-worker, Pat, and I exchange Christmas presents and I just HAD to show you what she got me this year!  

Are those not the CUTEST socks!?!?!?!  Love them!  :)

Andy & I came to a mutual decision about 10 years ago...we don't exchange gifts at Christmas between the two of us.  Basically, we are at the point in our lives that if we want something, and can afford it...we go out and get it.  That leaves very little to be "gifted".  So instead of struggling through "having" to find a gift for each other...we just don't exchange gifts.  We do give gifts to the kids, the grandkids, Andy's mother, and the neighbors (usually a box of candy).  

Since the kids and grandkids cannot make it home this year for Christmas, we don't have any gift exchanging to do tomorrow.  We didn't even put up our tree....all that made it up was a wreath on the front door.  We have a pre-lit tree and we were thinking about putting it up...until "the Illness" happened.  Basically, being too sick to pick your body up out of bed for 2 weeks will put a damper on many, many plans!  :(

So tomorrow I will make us a nice ham dinner complete with Coke Salad (a family tradition dating back to the late 1960's...I could give you the recipe, but then I'd have to kill you) and a homemade banana cream pieI know...banana cream pie is not traditional, like pumpkin or pecan pie...but neither are margaritas on Christmas Eve!  hahaha  

MERRY CHRISTMAS to each and every one of you!  


Thursday, December 23, 2010

Change is Inevitable...

Quote for the day:
 Never lose sight of the fact that the most important yardstick of your success will be how you treat other people - your family, friends, and coworkers, and even strangers you meet along the way.
~Barbara Bush

Today...two days before Christmas...we bid a fond adieu to a nurse at work.  

She has sold her house (finally...after 1.5 years on the market) and is moving back to Cleveland, OH, where she moved from 13 years ago.  We are all very happy for her, but sad to see her leave.  

Sue...or "Shoe" we began to call her many years ago...was "one of a kind".  You just never knew what she was going to do or say next.  And she kept us in "stitches" with most of it.  LOL  

Though she worked at the hospital for about a year longer than myself, we both started in the Recovery Room within a few weeks of each other.  That means I've worked with her for the last 12 years...the entire length of my nursing career in West Virginia thus far.   She's a very knowledgeable nurse and had a knack for diffusing difficult situations.

Since today was her last day, we held a party for her at work.  Many of us that were off of work today showed up to say good-bye and wish her well on this next part of her life-journey.  She  wondered why people kept showing up at the hospital on their day off until she realized we were there to give her a party!

There was the cake and gifts..

There were the friends and co-workers...

 There were tears and laughter...sometimes at the same time!  :)

 And there was even some "boogying" going down to music from an iPhone!   

We are all very happy for Sue that she gets to be by her family and grandson.  But, will be missed by your co-workers!  Blessings and Merry Christmas to you and your family!  :)


Friday, December 17, 2010

Friday Update...

Quote for the day:
Sickness comes on horseback but departs on foot.  
~Dutch Proverb, sometimes attributed to William C. Hazlitt

Not only did I bring back from our trip some wonderful memories...I also brought back some illness...

My little grand-nephew had the flu while we were there visiting and unfortunately, we were not able to contain it.  

Tuesday morning I woke up with the flu and by Tuesday evening it had turned into strep throat and an ear infection.  I went to the doctor on Wednesday morning and was started on antibiotics and steriods.  I am feeling a little better, though not as much as I would have hoped, by this time.

Regardless, the show must go on and I will be returning to work this afternoon.  Wish me luck...


Monday, December 13, 2010


Quote for the day:
"Some family trees bear an enormous crop of nuts."
~Author Unknown 

We had the pleasure of visiting with relatives this past weekend.  :) 
My brother's family live in Ohio, about 6 hours away from us, so we drove there for a visit this past weekend.   His daughter that lives in Uruguay was also there visiting for the Christmas holidays, along with her husband and 2 children.  And upon hearing we were coming, my sister, her daughter, granddaughter and grandson also made the trip up from Indianapolis, IN.  
It was a houseful and a whole lot of craziness and laughs!  We had a great time and didn't want to leave, but a winter storm was predicted and we felt we needed to high-tail it out of there before we ended up getting snowed in...although my dear sister-in-law said we could stay until the freezer ran out of food!  LOL   I think she meant it, too!  :)
The quilt in this post was made for my niece Rebekah and her husband Gabriel, the couple that live in Uruguay, so I took this opportunity to gift it to them.  They were VERY surprised and I think they loved it!  :)

Look at the way Gabriel is "fondling" the quilt in the second picture!  He was so excited to receive this quilt that when he read the quilt label and found BOTH their names on it, he pointed it out that he got to use it, too...not just Rebekah!  LOL  They both are so sweet and it was a pleasure to make it for them!  :)

Here I am with Rebekah (in the middle) and my niece, Susana (on the left) holding the quilt for picture taking...

 The rest of the pictures are just miscellaneous pictures that were taken during the visit...
              My brother, Jack and one of his grandsons, Zacharias...                                                          

His wife, Celeste, and me

My sister, Sharon, and her granddaughter, Monica

                                          Celeste and Rebekah...mother and daughter...

                             Andy stretching himself trying to reach up to Gabriel's height!!!  LOL

                                             My niece, Leah (Jack & Celeste's daughter)

Gabriel & Andy in a hot game of chess!!!  LOL  Note the concentration going on!!!  

Rebekah & Susana...cousins!!

I realized that I don't have a picture of Jack's daughter, Sarah.  She was there some of the time, but had to go to work on Saturday, which is when most of the pictures were taken.  

We had a fun time!  Too bad we couldn't have stayed longer...but you know the saying..."House guests and fish both start to stink after 3 days!"  LOL  

Thanks for stopping by my blog!  Hope you enjoyed the pictures of my crazy family!  :) 


Thursday, December 9, 2010

Just a Horrible, Horrible, No-Good Day...

Quote for the day:
In my friend, I find a second self.  
~Isabel Norton
Today a very good friend and co-worker of mine became very ill and I have spent the day crying and praying for her ...and feeling very helpless to do anything to help her or her husband and family.

Susan is a friend that I consider a "sista"...we have so much in common.  :)   She was taken to the hospital today and I'm going to go see her tomorrow and take her these...

She will be in an ICU where patients can't have real flowers, so I got a bouquet of silk flowers put into this cup for her.  This cup has "Susan" written all over it...well, not literally!  It actually says "The best things in life are God, friends, and a hot cup of coffee."   She loves coffee and coffee cups and classy "country" things.  Even the "colors" are her!

The cup was acquired in one of the boxlots we bought at the same auction where we got the Pfaltzgraff stoneware.  I don't even remember what was in the box that we wanted, but there always miscellaneous "stuff" thrown into boxes and then the boxes are sold at rock bottom prices to get rid of them.  This cup reminds me of something that would be sold at a specialty coffee shop or gift shop.  It's in excellent condition but I just couldn't figure out what to do with it so I had Andy take it out to the "yard sale" box.  However, since it is cold out and he didn't want to take it all the way to the garage, he put it down in the basement on a shelf.  

Lucky for me!  :)   Because almost from the time I heard that my friend had been taken to the emergency room and then life-flighted to the university hospital, I knew I wanted to do something  to cheer her up.  

I took the cup to a local florist and asked if she could put a "bright cheery holiday" bouquet of silk flowers in it for me.  I returned to the shop a half hour later after doing some errands and she had this arrangement waiting for me!  It's BEAUTIFUL!

And when the holidays are over, Susan can take the flowers out and use the cup and be reminded of how much she is loved!  :)  I hope she enjoys it!  :) 

I'm taking it to her tomorrow.  We are headed out of town for the weekend to visit with my brother and his family and we will stop by the hospital to see my dear friend on our way out of West Virginia.

I continue to pray for Susan, her husband and her daughter.  They are going through a very trying time right now with this illness and it will take every ounce of strength and endurance they have to see this thing through to the other side.  Susan is strong and will be encircled by a lot of loving friends who will help her.  I know she's gonna be okay...  


Sunday, December 5, 2010

Christmas Came a Little Early at Our House...

Quote for the day:
Nothing's as mean as giving a little child something useful for Christmas.  
~Kin Hubbard

I, on the other hand...LOVE a useful gift!  Especially when it is something that I've wanted for a while now!

For several months I've been waiting for Black Friday so I could get a really good price on a GPS and an MP3 player.  I've also been thinking it's time to replace my digital camera because it has "issues"...namely it eats through batteries like they are candy, and all the pictures come out REALLY dark and so EVERY picture has to be edited.  

I ended up not going out on Black Friday because my darling daughter said she'd get the GPS for us and my beautiful daughter-in-law said that they would get me MP3 player...and the camera was not a "necessity" since I already have I didn't go out and get anything on Black Friday.

Erin ordered our Christmas gifts online and had them sent here and they arrived the beginning of this past week.  I asked if she wanted us to wait till Christmas to open them and she said "no"...instead, yesterday (Saturday) we got on webcam with her and Dale and opened the gifts they was giving us then.  
One gift I knew of...the GPS...the second gift...I didn't know what it was...but it was A NEW DIGITAL CAMERA!!    YAY!

So last night after opening the presents, I started playing with the camera.  Instead of having an instruction booklet with it you have to read it online.  It has a "share" feature where you can upload pictures directly to social networks and certain photo sites.  I'm still trying to get that feature figured out.   That would be handy for adding pictures to Facebook!  :)  If I ever get it figured out...

I have the GPS opened, but my brain was too overloaded with technical information last night that I didn't have the brain power left to give that instruction booklet a go, yet.  LOL

We are taking a trip this weekend and can't wait to use the GPS then!  That means that I'll have to read the book and get it set up by then!  Can't wait to hear what voices they have available!   I have a funny story about a friend's GPS voice that I'll have to tell you sometime...but it has to be told in would lose it's humor if I tried to put it in writing.  

So...I've been working on machine quilting the "bug jar" quilt:

I have to work on it in "sessions" with lots of breaks.  Machine quilting is WORK!  You are fighting with the quilt the entire time to get it through that little space between the needle and the sewing machine.  And the quilt weighs a TON!   So I do it in "sessions" so I don't too frustrated with it.  However, just about the time I'm getting into my groove with the machine quilting...nice smooth stitches, nice straight lines, nice rounded curves,'s time to take a break and rest my back and arms.  

I also have my whole-cloth quilt in my hand quilting frame that I'm working on, too.  

After the quilt is finished and washed, the blue lines will wash out and all you will see is the stitching.  As you can see in the last picture, I thought the printed lines were too far apart (2") so I went and added additional lines between them so the lines are only 1" apart!  It will now take me TWICE as long to do it!  LOL

It's snowing here and it is NASTY outside!  :(  Hopefully, it will stop...eventually...sometime...before March.   

While I was outside taking this picture a deer ran across our neighbor's yard, across the street and across the neighbor's yard that lives across the street from us.  (That's a lot of use of the word "across"...but I can't figure out how else to say it!  LOL)

I have an Ebay auction of Pfaltzgraff ending tonight.  So far there are no bids, but with any luck it'll get a bid at the last minute.   

I have gotten rid of most of the Pfaltzgraff pieces that I didn't want and have been using the baking dishes that I saved for myself from the boxlot that I bought.  These dishes clean up so easily!  And they look so pretty!  They are really fun to use because they can make even MY food look good!  LOL  Even Andy has used them in his cooking!  

All pictures are compliments of our new camera!  :)  Love it!  

Thanks for stopping by!  Please leave a comment to let me know you were here and let me know what you have "released into the wild" recently!