Saturday, December 31, 2011

2011 In Review

2008 in in regular type, 2009 in BOLD,  2010 thoughts are in Red and 2011 thoughts are in blue.

The children are all employed, and reasonably healthy. Trica our oldest daughter still struggles with Pancreatitis. Ditto..Trica is still struggling..she might just be a tad more cranky too. She has pancreatitis from a Gall Bladder surgery years ago. Trica is on a temporary medical leave from her job as an RN.  She had a very scary episode in October which we now believe was a direct result of a prescribed medication that was taken off of the market in November.   She still struggles with Pancreatitis. Everyone still has jobs, Trica is enrolled at UND and in three years she will be a Nurse Practitioner.  She still struggles with Pancreatitis.

We still struggle with Doctors and Far Guys Trigeminal Neuralgia. We are comfortable with Dr. P. he seems adequate. There are no miracle cures..Trigeminal Neuralgia is a rare disorder that you must just learn to live with...easy for me to say..Far Guy is the one with continual pain. Dr P. is still taking good care of Far Guy…nothing is new with TN, it is still one of the most painful disorders known to mankind. Dr. P is still taking good care of Far great discoveries are forthcoming to fight this rare disorder.

No new Grand-babies..No divorces..a few deaths (two cousins and a very dear friend) This year five friends died.. Rhonda, Jim, Sam, Charles and Pat. Two family members, my Uncle Delbert, and my cousins fiancĂ©e. No Grandbabies ( I think the baby years are over).  Deaths we had a few..My Aunt Marie and Far Guys Aunt Esther.  No new grandbabies and no divorces. Deaths we had a few.. Aunt Violet, friends Ardith and Elsie both from Indiana and friend Tammy succumbed to breast cancer. 

No new pets, and no pet deaths. In 2009 Madison got a new kitten that she named Ziggy. Trica found a new home for her Pomeranian Daphne or "Daffy". Daffy now gets to be the Queen of her castle and no longer has to tremble in fear and hide under the couch to escape her terrorist companion Dakota who had a stroke a number of years ago and has an ongoing thyroid problem and is just not right in the head. I miss Daffy..she loved me. When they all lived with us..she was my constant companion. Paige got a kitty that she named Skittles and Savannah got a  pitch black kitty that she named Luna.  Andy went out and got himself a Sheltie puppy who is named Little Elvis. No new pets and no pet deaths.

Biggest Adjustment..Far Guy's Trigeminal Neuralgia and how it affects our day to day life. Ditto..we must always be flexible.... it just may not be a good day, or a good week. Ditto. Ditto.

Biggest Change..Closing the Greenhouse business, a very wise decision. I miss it, but I am getting over it. Well I am way over this one..this years biggest eating..more exercise. Biggest change this year..being able to see without glasses after my cataract surgery. Biggest change this year was leaving Far Guy and Chance on their own while I went to work at the Museum…they can survive without me!  

Biggest Frustration.. Doctors that don't know their butt from a hole in the ground, and the phone ringing. Ditto.. and gaining weight because I quit a nasty habit..that I enjoyed..but now my metabolism is all out of whack.  For now and since July I have been an ex-smoker.  It ain't has been one of the hardest things I have ever done in my entire life.  I have however curbed the desire to lick every ash tray I see..and those smokers outside freezing their skinny butts off..I envy them..perhaps I will get over that with time..old habits die hard..I began to smoke as a teenager..that was well over forty years ago.  My daughter said "Mom we would rather have you alive and healthy looking and a little fat, than dead and skinny." The phone ringing still irritates me..and now that Far Guy has a cell phone sometimes they both ring at the same time. We are still non smokers..fatter ones.. Ditto..Still non smokers..still fat too.

Happiest Moment..a very nostalgic Ferris Wheel Ride last August with Far Guy. Playing a little "kissy face" stopped at the top! I had to think on this for quite some time.. I had many happiest moments this year and if I had to pin it down to just one moment it would be watching Chance and Far Guy on the lake shore of Lake Superior..watching Chance run between us. The happiest moment this year: When our oldest daughter Trica woke up after being unconscious for more than 24 hours..and she knew who we were. The happiest moment this year was finding out that Far Guy made the Emergency Life Flight to Fargo alive and that he had no Heart blockages..he had treatable pericarditis.

It was another year of ups and downs.  We are getting older..we are thankful for healthy grandchildren and the companionship of a great dog!

Our “No Snow “ spell ended yesterday with three inches of snow.  We are expecting some freezing rain today and then more snow and then it is supposed to get windy. Winter must be here.

Chance Dec 30 2011

If you go out tonight..stay safe and use a designated will have a happier New Year that way!  Us old folks are just staying home:)

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Friday, December 30, 2011

Last of the Red Hot Shoppers

I was so not ready to run out on Monday morning to shop.  I waited till Wednesday..then I hit Menards.

You see Menards had a 50 % off sale.  I knew I might be able to find what I was seeking there.

My list: Shiny Brites, a tree skirt, gift tags and wrapping paper.  The wrapping paper was a bust..I could have purchased Green Hornet or Transformer wrapping paper..there was not a plain piece of paper or one with whimsical little Angels or Birds left to be found.

My perfect Christmas wrapping paper exists only in my mind.  It has a white snow bank filled  background.  Cherub like children are decorating rows of trees with little birds and strings of cranberries and popcorn whilst forest creatures like deer and foxes and bunny rabbits look on. It has all colors on the paper so what ever color bow I grab works perfectly.

I got everything else on my list.

Shopping list

I really needed a tree skirt for the tall tree upstairs..I have a little tree skirt that barely goes around the tree that I purchased at a rummage sale for a quarter..this new one will be perfect.

The Shiny Brites are retro ones by Christopher Radco.  I now have two boxes of them.   Last year I missed the half price sale at Menards.  Two years ago I bought a full price..I couldn’t restrain myself.

Retro Shiny Brites and papers

This year the retro ornaments are nestled inside these Shiny Brite tissue how cool is that? about 50 years these will be collectable too.

Retro Shiny Brites

Next we hit the Antique Mall..a quick trip around looking for Vintage Shiny Brites..only one was found for $3.50..I passed.   John smiled as I walked up to his booth..he said “here look at these while I run home I have been saving some old photos for you.” I think John had a belated Merry Christmas..he now knows exactly what kind of old photos I will buy.  He had saved a whole bunch of old black and white photo Christmas cards…perfect.

Yesterday I was in another antique shop..a new gal was working.. I asked her if she had any old photos..she replied “ Someone must collect we don’t have any.” The shop owner came out and said “Hi ..we have no old have bought them all!” I did find four old photos there..sometimes  shop keepers have no idea what they have in their shops:) 

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Thursday, December 29, 2011

Four Years

One day back in 2007 I woke up and said..gosh I think I will write a blog.  Perhaps I will voice some of my opinions and tell some stories about how things used to be when I was a little girl.  Perhaps “The Five” will find it interesting and amusing someday to learn something about their Grandmother…then again maybe never know.

I had been reading Buffalo Gal’s Blog for a couple of years..she was and is awesome with all of her stories!   She and I became fast friends.  I value her opinion and her friendship.

Today is post number 1,468.  I have not missed many days in four years. Daughter Jen guest blogged one time when I was hospitalized with pneumonia.  Chance guest blogs from time to time so I do get a break.

One thing I worry about is repeating myself..have I shown an old photo before on Wistful Wednesday?  If I repeat myself I hope my readers will just go with the flow, and chalk it up to getting older.  I thought about compiling an index..I decided it would be too much work.

Last summer when I was working at the museum I began to write in my mind and then spit them out into the computer late at night.  It seems to have worked.  I have discovered my best writing time is when the house is quiet and the phone is not ringing.  Blogging is a hobby.. a fun hobby.  Most of my blogs are written the night before and published in the early morning.

I also write Forgotten Old Photos.  A blog where old photos found in antique shops are sometimes reunited with family.  That blog brings me great personal satisfaction.  I also get to feed the old photo collection monster that dwells inside me.

Blogging would be a perfect job!  This winter I am being paid to continue writing the Hubbard County Historical Museums blog.

My personal photo blog Far Side of Fifty Photos began to suffer last was hard to keep is still one of my passions..and Chance is sometimes a willing subject!

How long will I be blogging for..I have no idea..I take it all one day at a time. God willing and the crick don’t rise I will be back tomorrow.

I have “met” some marvelous bloggers over the past four years. Some I have actually met in real life..some are neighbors!  I thank each and every one of my readers, especially those who leave comments!

Now for a pretty picture. I once had a blogging friend who said “No post is complete without a pretty picture.”  Heaven has been her home for two years now.  Yes, even in the blogging world there is death and feelings of great loss when we lose one of our own.  I cannot explain just is.

Lupine and bokeh

Lupines in the wild gardens..with Veronica ‘Blue Bouquet’ providing the bokeh:)

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Wistful Wednesday: Christmas 1959

This is a Christmas photo that my Mom took in 1959.

Christmas Connie and Carey 1959

We are on the front porch of the farm house..I am not sure why the tree was out there all covered in tinsel and all. Perhaps this was the winter that some construction was going on inside the house and the tree was better off in the porch.  In early 1960  we got an indoor bathroom and a real tub. That would have been a good enough Christmas present!   No more cold freeze your butt off outhouse seat. No more sharing of the bath water in a galvanized wash tub.

I guess I must have gotten a life size doll so I could practice being a good babysitter or something.  I have no recollection of playing with that doll very had eyes that closed when you laid it down. 

That is my baby brother Carey in the photo..with one of those snazzy shirts that my Mom used to sew for him.  I think that one was flannel and it had horses on it..gosh I loved horses..he didn’t care very much for them..yet he got the horse curtains and the horse shirts..and look at that.. he didn’t even tuck in his shirt or pose for the camera:)

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Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Gifts for Teens and Tweens

I do not begin to understand all the IPod..Xbox..DS3D..Justin Bieber world that surrounds “The Five.”

Shopping for appropriate Christmas Gifts was a challenge. I am out of “the loop.”

Some packages were wrapped in Justin Bieber paper..with admonishments to unwrap carefully.  There was Justin Bieber Perfume ( yuk), blankets, posters and t shirts.  I hope someone responsible is taking care of the JB Fortune.  I don’t see the attraction..even after watching the movie..then again I have never swooned or screamed after any singer in my lifetime.  I did feel a bit like screaming one time at one of The Unbelievable Uglies dances back in 1968 but only because one of Far Guys former girlfriends was there.

I was totally in the dark about the one piece animal cap/scarf/mittens that the girls absolutely loved. 

Paige and her Husky Scarf

Miss Paige’s was supposed to be a Husky.

Maddies showing the mittens

Maddie’s  was supposed to be a wolf.   I really couldn’t tell much difference..the wolf may have been a little darker than the Husky.


This was a gift that I won in a giveaway just before Christmas.  It was a perfect gift for Maddie..and she loved it!   Thanks to Susan at City Gal Moves To Oz Land and to Michelle at Rockin Heart Jewelry. Maddie loves all things horses or hockey.

Maddie and her wolf scarf and mittens

Maddie is our UND Fighting Sioux gal..she got a jacket, t-shirt, pants and a necklace.  She is not as wild and crazy about JB as her sisters. ( Perhaps someday she will be on the Women’s Hockey Team.)

Now a compound bow..that is a wonderful Christmas gift!  One that needed no explanation..I knew what it was and how it is used.

Noah and His Compound Bow

Noah  was very excited…he will need some place to practice.  I think I will shop for a bow..I have always wanted one..we can put a practice shooting lane someplace here in the woods.  It will be a good activity  to share with both of the boys.  Of course the girls could give it a try too:)

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Monday, December 26, 2011

December 26, 2011

The day after..and I am tired.

Christmas Eve after church we sat napped through the Justin Bieber movie Never say Never..whilst the girls swooned and sang along with all the songs.

The boys and their parents spent most of Christmas Eve Day up North with Andy’s parents.  They arrived late at night and they sacked out in the Living Room.

It was all a success..we ate and we did dishes..we ate again.

Here are the five on Christmas Morning. These kids must all be growing..they can pack away the food!


I had just told them “If you kids don’t smile..we are never going to open any packages.”

Girls Dancing

The girls danced. They all played with their new toys. Cameras and IPods and Nintendo DS3’s and a compound bow.

Laughter and giggling commenced for most of the day..we played Pass The Pig..a simple game like dice except you use pigs.

My Mom and Dad ventured out and had dinner with us..and Mom made it down and up the stairs safely.

Sometime during the day..I was at my computer..Adam came by and said “Grandma could I please use your computer?”   I said “Of Course.”  He said “Oh yeah Merry Christmas Grandma.” I used to think he might be a UPS delivery guy when he grew up because he liked to push the truck (cart) around in the I  am not so sure..he sure knows how to schmooze his Grandma:)Adam Merry Christmas

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas!

connie blog headers-p0037

Away in a Manger

Away in a manger,
No crib for His bed
The little Lord Jesus
Lay down His sweet head

The stars in the sky
Looked down where He lay
The little Lord Jesus
Asleep on the hay

The cattle are lowing
The poor Baby wakes
But little Lord Jesus
No crying He makes

I love Thee, Lord Jesus
Look down from the sky
And stay by my side,
'Til morning is nigh.

Be near me, Lord Jesus,
I ask Thee to stay
Close by me forever
And love me I pray

Bless all the dear children
In Thy tender care
And take us to heaven
To live with Thee there


Author Unknown

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas Eve!

The stockings are hung by the fireplace, the house has been decorated and every last ornament has found a place on a tree. The house has been cleaned and almost all dusted. No one should be able to write “Dust me” on anything.


My oldest ornament ..a pink and blue fish that used to be part of a twelve piece set that was usually given to Newlyweds..each ornament had a special meaning.  The fish  symbolized Christ’s Blessings.  If I keep looking someday I may find a whole box of these ornaments at a shop or at a sale.

Upstairs at Christmas

The packages are wrapped and piled upstairs.  Yesterday one of my old timers moments caused me to search high and low for a gift that I bought last summer.  Now I remember why I don’t shop ahead of time.  I cannot remember where I put the gifts.  After searching every inch of the house for THREE HOURS looking in every drawer and cabinet at least twice..mumbling to really need to put clean out drawers on the “to do” list… I found it.   It was a miracle. I was ready to write a note that said “When I find your gift I will bring it over.”  I can just hear a certain someone laughing about that.

The Pumpkin Bread was baked and loaves were delivered.  A new recipe was tried for Flat bread.  I conquered it!! ( Thank goodness for cousins that can bake and share their recipes!!  Thanks Geraldine! )   The Beans were Baked..and frozen.. also another recipe from Geraldine!  The kitchen smells wonderful as I write this..Far Guy made his Caramel wouldn’t be Christmas morning without them.

Today I will make Flat Bread again..Cornbread Muffins and an Italian Sausage Cheesy Dip and an Apple Crisp. 

I have a few recipes for the grand girls to try..we are having snack food on Christmas Eve after Church..Crescent rolls, some with little sausages and some with pepperoni and mozzarella cheese sticks…with some marvelous dip.. oh and Herring.. a Christmas Eve staple at our house.

We got a little snow..about an inch..just enough to make it look a little like Christmas.

Merry Christmas Eve everyone!  :)

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Friday, December 23, 2011

The Shiny Brite Ladies

The Shiny Brite tree is all decorated. I lost count..I will estimate that there are about 300 Shiny Brites.

This year Lillian joins Jo, Rae and Grace.  They are all Shiny Brite ladies whose ornaments adorn my big  tree upstairs.

old ornaments on the tall tree (2)

The purple ones belonged to neighbor lady Grandma Grace and then she sold them at a garage sale.   Lucky for me..they are the ornaments that began the Shiny Brite Addiction a long time ago.

Ornament from Rae Number one (2)

This is one of the indents that Rae at The Old Weather Vane gifted to me several years ago.

Ornaments from Jo (2)

Jo who lives just down the road from me..gave me these last year.

This year my best friend Susan was clearing out some of her Mothers belongings..Lillian liked Shiny Brites too and after her death Susan gave me a box.

Box of Shiny Brites from Susan and Lillian

This is the first year they have been on my tree.

Shiny Brites from Susan

So these are for you Lillian.  When I look at them I will remember your smile and your laugh..they are a perfect addition to my tree.

Shiny Brite tree and Chance 2011

I think it looks just wonderful!   All the Shiny Brites that I have been collecting over the past 25 years finally have a proper home:)

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Thursday, December 22, 2011

Chance: A Shiny Brite Secret and a Sty

Hey!  It’s me..the blogging Border Collie.


I have been just miserable..I have a sore eye.  Someone thinks I may have whopped myself in the eye running through the brush after a squirrel.   I was blinking my eye as fast as I was all yucky too..and I was squinting.  Far Side found some old doggie ophthalmic ointment from the last time I scratched my cornea.  She said “Chance you are a repeat offender.”

Tuesday morning I went to the Vet..I know the routine.  They always want to know how much I weigh so I just walk to the scale and hop on and sit down..  Hmmm..  62 pounds.  Then they want me on the table..Okay I can cooperate.. I put my front feet on the exam table..Far Guy decided to help hoist me up.  They put gunk in my eye..I look to the left and then to the right.  Far Side is behind the Doc..looking..she can’t see a scratch or anything..finally they decide I have a sty which looks like a tiny little pimple on my lower eyelid.   My eyes.. both of them..  got all rinsed felt yucky ..but I sat like a good boy.  The Vet gave me a treat..I refused way was I taking that treat after an eye wash.

We got a new tube of ointment and my eye is much better..I get a treat every time they put the ointment in my eye. I will be good as new in a couple of days.

I went to see Far Side’s Mom yesterday..she is back at home and recovering nicely from her bad fall.  She has a new ramp at her house and a walker and a wheelchair.  I am not a bit afraid of any of those things because when I was a pup I went to the Nursing Home to visit just about every day.

Now you wanna see the Shiny Brite Secret? 

Shiny Brites are the Christmas ornaments that Far Side collects.  They are on the huge tree upstairs.  I watched  supervised the are you ready for the secret??

Chance and the Shiny Brite Secret

There are no lights on that tree only Shiny Brites picking up what light they can.  Far Side thinks it is quite magical..she is easily impressed:)

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Wistful Wednesday: Christmas 1955

This photo was amongst the photos that Cousin Bonnie gave to Far Guy.  I have seen it before.

All of these sister in laws are gone..  Cancer..Alzheimer's..and old age claimed them all. 

Evelyn Esther Jean and Beryl 1955 Christmas

Married to brothers..together for Christmas at the farm.

Far Guys Mom Evelyn is on the left, it would have been her 97th birthday yesterday.  In this photo she was 41 and the oldest. She wasn’t a very social person, everything was prim and proper..nothing was ever done on the spur of the moment.

Auntie Esther is next, she died last December.  She always called Far Guy and I “you kids.”  She was spontaneous..and during the summer at the lake she would almost always be found in her swimsuit.  She enjoyed the outdoors and embraced every activity from hunting to snowmobiling to fishing and of course golfing.

Jean..I won’t call her Aunt Jean..she was divorced from her husband a few years after this photo was taken. Far Guy said she was beautiful and had a mind of her own.  I never met her, she died of cancer.

Aunt Beryl, I have known her ever since I can remember. She had an infectious laugh.  My Mother was one of her best friends. I remember when her new house was built and the white crushed velvet furniture appeared in her living room..I wondered if anyone ever dared to sit on it…us kids always went to the basement!   She had Alzheimer's a number of years..she was gone..but her body wasn’t done living yet..Alzheimer's is a terrible affliction. 

I wonder sometimes how these women all got along.  I am certain there were some under currents..perhaps even some teeth gnashing.  They must have all gotten along for the sake of their husbands. I think it would have been interesting to have been a mouse in the corner sometimes:)

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Tuesday, December 20, 2011

42 Years

“It's so great to find that one special person you want to annoy for the rest of your life.”

Gene and Coonie 1969

Ah young love sometimes works out to be old comfortable love.

Communication is the cornerstone of a good relationship.  Despite my husbands uncanny ability to know my many moods..he cannot read my mind. He is not Superman. We are much better communicators than we were 42 years ago.  I try to use words like I instead of You.. “I feel tired.” versus “You should know I feel tired.” “ I am confused.. what can I help you do?” versus “You obviously are trying to do something that just won’t work.”

Old love and communication: The kind where you can finish each others sentences, the kind where you know when the other is thinking the exact same thing you catch each others eye and smile..and later you compare notes and laugh.  The kind where just holding hands is an expression of support encouragement and undying love. The kind that asks “What is on your agenda today and how can I help you?”

Annoyances: Oh there are many.. Today I will share a few things that irritate I see it:

When I chew bubble gum and blow bubbles and pop them…although really good bubble gum is hard to find nowadays.

When I chew gum noisily with my mouth open..the snapping of gum nearly drives him nuts.

He hates my sleepwalking and talking and screaming. I cannot blame him..I don’t like it much either.

He dislikes sand on the floor..occasionally I will come in the house and grab something without taking off my shoes. For shame..for shame.

He  gets grumpy when I shave my legs in the tub and forget to rinse it out.

It annoys him if I am right and he is wrong..sometimes the discussion can go on for days.

Sometimes I have time management problems..He likes to be on time..AIS ( That is A** in Seat) times are discussed and agreed upon, so no one is waiting..although sometimes I get to the car before he does..just to make a point..and then I announce the time especially if he is a minute or two late..yup it is all about communication.

So yes..we like to annoy each other sometimes:) 

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Monday, December 19, 2011

Where is the snow?

It is unusual for our area of Minnesota to have a brown Christmas.  We got a bit of snow the other day..and then it was warm yesterday ( almost 40 degrees F) and much of the snow melted.  We seem to be in a dry weather pattern..or maybe global warming has finally come to Minnesota. Chance December 18 2011

Last year at this time we had seven inches of snow on the do I know this?? ..because of the old snow stick photos.  Oh well in one snowy day we can be all caught up with last year.


Chance and I played ball and horsed around with the camera before it got dark at 4:30PM.  Two more days and we will start to gain a minute a day…whoopee! 


I have quite a collection of flags and this is the Christmas goose flag that took up residence outside the front door. He looks like a grumpy old goose..perhaps that big cheerful bow is choking him:)

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Sunday, December 18, 2011

Santa Lives In Oregon

“The joy of brightening other lives, bearing each others' burdens, easing other's loads and supplanting empty hearts and lives with generous gifts becomes for us the magic of Christmas.”

I knew the gifts were coming, my baby brother told me that they would be arriving sometime before Christmas or shortly thereafter.

When he was visiting here last week, he saw a need.  As soon as he got back home he put in the order.

The packages were delivered yesterday by Fed Ex..Chance got a treat.

I called my baby brother and asked him when he wanted them delivered.  He said “Anytime you have time to set them up.”

Far Guy and I took off for the Nursing Home so that the ladies would be able to play with their new gifts right after supper.

Santa came early to Mom and Aunt Lila

He sent beautiful new HP laptops to Mom and to Aunt Lila.

Some happy gals

Aunt Lila is sharp as a tack, she has rheumatoid arthritis.  She is a computer whiz..the wireless mouse worked perfectly for her when placed on a phone book in her lap.  One of her favorite games is we loaded that software on both computers.  They were busy playing Bookworm and Solitaire and smiling. 

No one at the Nursing Home knew what the wireless security key they cannot get on the Internet yet..maybe tomorrow.

So just in case you were wondering..Santa lives in Oregon and my brother knows him personally:)

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Saturday, December 17, 2011

December 17, 2011

It is slow going, but the gifts that have been purchased have been wrapped.  We are still waiting for two more deliveries. 

I am working on the Shiny Brite Tree is a good thing we are not expecting overnight company.

The beds are full of ornaments and ornament boxes.


The old loveseat is full of ornaments.


I am not sure why I have been keeping this old loveseat..we had a couch that matched..but Chance wore that one out.  Small grandchildren used to be able to sleep on they are all too tall to sleep on it comfortably. It is too good to throw out.


The tree coffin is empty. It is awaiting empty boxes and containers.

I have marked all the boxes and plastic containers with post it notes so I know what goes where when I pack them all back up again in about ten days.


The top of the tree gets decorated first then I take it off the stand and hold it and Far Guy puts the rest of the tree together and we both hoist it worked last year..I think Far Guy stood on a chair.  See that boom is loaded with Bee Gees and Beach Boys and Rock n Roll Oldies..great tree trimmin’ music:)

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Friday, December 16, 2011

From My Desk

This is the view from my desk at home.  I have been seeing a lot of the Christmas tree lately. The woodcarving/laptop table has been moved to make room for the Christmas tree.

The Tree December 14

Far Guy was not feeling up to writing the Christmas letter..he is obviously not feeling up to par when he has lost his sense of humor.  The medication he takes for the pericarditis has his stomach in an uproar…but his hips don’t hurt…which he thinks is a wonderful side effect.  He can run faster.

I wrote the Christmas Letter..if you read my blog..then you have some idea what I said in the letter.  It is boring old news with a Merry Christmas attached. However many of the people we send Christmas Letters to do not have computers so they will think the letter is a big deal.  Anyways it went through re writes..and spell check..I wrote a few personal notes..not as many as I usually do..then it was stuffed into envelopes and was mailed today.  After purchasing 120 stamps..I may rethink Christmas Letters and or Cards next year. ( Do I say that every year?)

Far Guy had to totally redo the Christmas mailing labels. His old address list  did not convert to a readable program on his new computer.  It needed some updates anyway…several people have died, some have moved and a few were married. We worked on that list together.

I made a couple of “special” Christmas cards for Far Guy to mail to his train friends.  I mailed off some more packages of ornaments.

I am running the first drafts of some fund raising letters for the Historical Museum.  I call them “ding” letters…they cannot be long and boring..they cannot be sappy and sweet..they should be just sad enough for you to write a check but not so sad that you will have to stop and sob uncontrollably. I am writing to several different organizations and will have Jen ( the English professor) proof them for me before I bring them to the Board for final approval.   Final approval happens the first week in January.  I hate doing things at the last minute…except always happens at the last minute around here. 

I have almost finalized the Christmas Eve and Christmas Day Menus..I still need a couple of recipes..Geraldine’s Flatbread, Jens Cornbread and the Homemade Mac and Cheese that Adam likes.   Andy’s Smoked Ribs, Geraldine’s Baked Beans and our frozen corn off the cob will round out the Christmas Day menu. Oh and Pumpkin Bread..the grand's  favorite.

Tomorrow I am running away from my desk..and running upstairs to wrap packages and possibly getting the Shiny Brite Tree up God willing and the crick don’t rise:)

Mom is able to get out of her wheelchair by herself and walk a few steps with the walker.  She can dress herself including her socks and she is almost ready to go home..perhaps the first part of next week.  Her pain is less and she can sleep three hours at a time.

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Thursday, December 15, 2011

Ornaments from Years Past

We began making ornaments for family members back in 1990.  Our first ornament was a small wooden Loon. In 1991 I painted a Santa or a Mrs. Claus or an elf, in 1992 they were pairs of wooden mittens.  Some day I should photograph these old ornaments on one of our daughters trees..the first three years I did not keep one for us.

Here are the rest of the ornaments through the years. Note there is no ornament for 1998.  It was a lousy seashell that year..our shell is still out in my garage in a box full of seashells.  I heard they were a tad smelly even though we soaked them in bleach..and the sand was an added bonus! I was not going to do ornaments that year because we were in Florida for the winter..and at the last minute I caved.

Christmas ornaments One

1993 a wooden toy soldier.

1994 a shot gun shell santa.

1995 a big red sleigh bell.

1996 a wooden birdhouse.

1997 a wood turned snowman.

1999 clothespin angels.

2000 santa face on a bent spoon.

2001 a black walnut tree with buttons.

2002 a black walnut gingerbread boy with buttons.

Christmas Ornaments two

2003 a decoupage photo..everyone was different.

2004 a wooden  flag.

2005 a little light bulb santa.

2006 a hand carved candy cane.

2007 a beaded angel.

2008 a snowflake design burned into a piece of basswood.

2009 a loon wood burned and painted.

2010 a cottonwood bark hand carved church.

2011 a basswood spool with a hand carved santa face.

It has been an adventure.  The idea behind this little gift is so that when someone gets married and leaves home..they will have a box of their very own ornaments to take along for their own tree. I make them for our brothers, sisters, nieces, nephews, great nieces, great nephews and friends…and a few special dogs and some cats too.

Now for the Spool Santa give away.  Big drumroll. The winners are..

Drawing Winners 2011

Blog reader Phyllis is the winner locally..I know where she works and I will drop off the ornament there!  Changes in the Wind  please contact me with your snail mail address.  Congratulations to the winners..I wish I would have had time to carve more:)

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