Thursday, December 31, 2015

Goodbye 2015

The last day of 2015.  My mother-in-law has gone home.  The tree is put away.  I've mostly cleared the main level of the Christmas decorations. There are still some things on the kitchen table.  I need to put away a pile stuff I left in the basement.  I should get up and take care of these little chores.  I find I can fill my day taking care of little chores.  I'll do some today and the others will be here tomorrow.  Things are slowing down around our home.

The tree first thing in the morning before I un-decorated it. 

We finished our puzzle.  My daughter (Lindsay) is in the middle. 

I haven't decided on any one resolution.  I probably wouldn't keep it long anyway.  For the month of January I'm going to work on a granny square afghan.  I started this for Lindsay a million years ago. The time has come for me to finish it.  The plan for now is to focus on a work in progress each month and hopefully complete it.  That's the best resolution/daily practice for me.  2016 the year of finishing old projects!

Have a Safe and Happy New Year's!!!!!!

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Yarn Along - my first

This is my first attempt to link my blog to Ginny's Yarn Along.  Snowflakes are all I have made in the last few days.  These need to be blocked.  I've been thinking I'll try some with thread instead of the cotton yarn.  I like the chunky look of the cotton.  I'll see how I feel when I sit to stitch.

I started this book in the summer.  It was a book I picked up at our library's huge book sale.  It's ok.  I put it down at the end of summer and read other things.  Now I want to finish it to see how it ends.  I read right before I go to sleep.  Some nights I barely make a page before my eyes close. 

After reading my last post I feel like I should make a few clarifications.  I think I came across as having everything perfect.  What I meant was I've come to terms with the with being a 47 year old woman who has had two children.  My weight and exercise are in a good place.  Could I improve on them, absolutely!  Trust me, no one wants to see me in a bikini!!  I like to walk our dog but could not run a marathon, ever!  Sometimes my small portions of candy are larger than others.  I do NOT live in a minimalistic house.  I have less things than I did two years ago.  I still like to buy things.  Books and magazines are my downfall.  I bought the Star Wars craft book at Barnes and Noble yesterday. Did I need it?? No!  I found it funny and it came home with me.  Will I keep it forever, maybe!

I'm still thinking about a resolution/un-resolution, daily practice.  I think I might try something on a monthly basis.  I still have one more day to decide.

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Resolutions, Un-resolutions, Daily practices, Routines

The beginning of 2016 is quickly approaching.  I've been thinking a lot about what it might bring and what I might like to do differently.  In the past I've had all the typical resolutions, spend less, lose weight, exercise everyday.  Those never lasted past two weeks.  What I've found is I do better with tiny baby steps of dealing with those issues.  The spend less is easier for me now.  I've been trying to eliminate excess clutter from our home.  I look at things very differently.  I ask myself "Do I really want to deal with this in a year?"  I am enjoying less.  As for weight loss, I cut out sodas and I eat smaller portions of candy.  I like sweets.  M&M's are my weakness.  I don't know if I'll ever completely cut them out of my diet.  Exercise hasn't been an issue for two years. We got a dog.  I have never in my life exercised more consistently.  He is a terrier mix and a bundle of energy.  Our daily walks are a must.  The fitbit helps.  I throughly enjoy this gadget.  It is very satisfying to make my 10,000 steps a day.

Bru the silly dog and my walking buddy.  My basket of crafty goodness waiting for me to decide what I shall work on next.

It's crafts and creativity I seem to be focusing my thoughts on for 2016.  I've thought about a daily practice.  I like the idea of having something I do everyday, something crafty.  I make our bed daily and brush my teeth and all that stuff.  Adding something creative daily could be fun.  I do craft.  I crochet, attempt to draw, and sew.  There are days I go without doing anything crafty.  I'm too tired or too busy, at least that's what I tell myself.  Could I do something continuously for any amount of time least of all a whole year?  What would I pick to do?  It does seems daunting, to do something everyday for the whole year.  I have a few more days to mull this over in my mind.

Christmas gifts I received.  I love crafty gifts.

What I use to help keep me organized.  The Charley Harper calendar goes on our fridge.  I adore his art work.  The little black moleskine is a tiny date book I write down appointment and such.  I know I could keep it on my iPhone.  I'm a notebook kind of girl.  The orange notebook is a kind of daily log/craft journal/general thoughts book.

I'll be looking at other blogs to see what resolutions, routines, and daily practices others might try this New Year.  Oh the possibilities!

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Christmas time fun

What a flurry of activities this past week has been.  There was cooking, baking, wrapping, cleaning, and too many dishes that needed to be washed!  We had to make a few trips here and there for last minute items, some gift related, some needed for the kitchen projects.  I got a much needed hair cut and stopped by Hobby Lobby.  It was just to look, I didn't need anything.  We live in the city limits and running out for this or that is a little too easy.

Having yummies to eat makes doing dishes not such a terrible chore.

We started a puzzle.  I love working on a puzzle.  We did a similar one last year.  That one has candy wrappers.  I glued it together and the hope is to use it for art work on the basement walls.  No, it is not hung up yet.  I will probably glue this one together as well.  I may look at Amazon to see if they have any other versions.  I get a touch obsessive at times with things I like.

The puzzle table is a small dinette table.  I set up a T.V. tray to add some extra space.  There are so many pieces that look the same.  The word Hostess appears on almost all of the cake/treat wrappers.

My mother-in-law, Dee - and I.  My arms weren't long enough to get the puzzle in the picture.  I can see how a selfie stick could be useful.

Christmas morning prior to kids coming downstairs.  The kids are thirteen and sixteen.  I guess the years of 6:00am or earlier Christmas morning wake up calls are gone.  It was nice to have the extra snooze time.

The aftermath!

We are having such a nice break.  It feels good to have the family around.  We have good food to eat and fun things to do.  I hope everyone else is have a wonderful holiday season.  I'm off to finish that puzzle.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

The weekend before Christmas

I love this time of year.  The hustle and bustle of getting things ready.   My mother-in-law arrives tonight.  The guest room is ready.  She is a very easy going lady.  Even if the guest room was a total disaster she wouldn't bat an eye at it.  I am so fortunate to have her as my mother-in-law.  If anything I think my Type A tendencies might drive her a touch batty.  She is kind enough not to say a thing to me.

My husband's birthday was Friday.  We ended up celebrating on Saturday.  We went to see the new Star Wars movie.  The new characters were interesting.  The family really enjoyed the movie.  I thought it was entertaining.

We saw Yoda on the way home from the movie.  I thought he was cute.  There's nothing like Santa Yoda to wish you a Merry Christmas.

Today was a whirlwind of activities.  I cleaned up the two small storage closets in the basement, attempted to finish laundry, and picked up my craft room.  My craft room can be a dumping room.  I have to constantly stay on top of that room.  Really, I have to constantly stay on top of every room in the house!  I've wrapped some gifts.  It's not that there are so many.  Rather than do them all at once I wrap a few at a time.   I've started the Christmas dinner grocery list.  I think will make Tuesday morning the big grocery shopping day.  We need to bake our cookies.  There are still many things to do but I don't feel like it's crazy.  The plan for tonight is to relax, crochet a snowflake, and watch "The Librarian."

If I don't fall asleep first :-)

There's nothing like a tidy space to inspire me to craft.

Thursday, December 17, 2015


It feels so great to accomplish a few things. The box of gifts for my family in Arkansa is ready to mail. That is a huge weight lifted from my mind.  My husband and I have been doing some general clean up around the house today.  We put out a nice pile of items for Am Vets to pick up this afternoon. He has been listing items to sell on Craig's List.  It's a constant battle to keep clutter under control.  I hope someone wants to buy some of our things.  I am ready to have them gone.  We've listed a few music instruments.  The kids have played many different ones through the years.  So far the saxophone, guitar, and piano have been the favorites.  They are keepers.  The two small guitars and the violin are hopefully off to other homes.

I'm so happy that box is ready to go to Arkansas.  I had to snap a picture of the kitty girls, Avi and Binxy.  Yes, that is a cat bed on my dining room table.  If it's on the floor the dog chews it.  Our dining room table is used mostly for working puzzles so it doesn't really bother me.

While I've been very productive.  Binxy has been rather destructive.  She's the mostly white cat.

These were in my craft room.  It is a conspiracy to kill the dog.  She brings them down and leaves them for him to chew.  I know she is secretly hoping he will choke.

I'm optimistic I will continue this trend of accomplishment.  I have a list a mile long of things I want/need to do this weekend.  But it's all good and that's a nice list to tackle.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

A little bit of holiday STRESS!

A little bit of holiday STRESS!

I wait till almost the last minute, not the last minute, but oh so close!  I do this to myself.  Instead of the things I should be doing I find a million things to do first.  I make a quick stop at Kohl's.  I work on a crochet gift that will more than likely NOT make the box to my family.  I head off to carpool. I write a blog post.  

This is the mess I left last night to clean up this morning.  Maybe someday I will learn to clean up the night before.

The important task of the day is slowly coming together.  I'm already thinking if I get the box together tonight I can take it to UPS tomorrow.

Because my mind is all over the place today I'll randomly throw in a silly picture of Bru.  I love animal pictures.

In my slight frenzy not to fall too far behind a hot cup of coffee and a sweet treat will help me complete my day.

We won't even think about what's for dinner, Christmas cookies or laundry.

Just a quick not on what I've learned about blogging.  I finally saw the line to make a title.  I now show up with a picture on my blog profile.  I did need some help from my husband with that issue.  I hope to list my Instagram account on the side bar.  Using my camera instead of my phone for pictures is something to tackle after the holidays.  Trying to come up with ways to not start every sentence with "I" is also on the list of things to do.  Having the urge to have the family check my work before it's published is another to do.  I'm so afraid of making a mistake.  Goodness knows that's already a book several volumes long.

Sunday, December 13, 2015

The Weekend

Friday I was able to leave work a little early to meet a friend at a local Arts and Craft show.  We had a lovely time.  I was losing my battle with a four day headache but it was still fun.  My hope was to find a few gifts, as typical, I walked away with a few things for myself.   No larger purchases, I bought a pottery cup egg separator and microwave egg cooker and homemade marshmallows.  The egg cooker works very well.  The separator works ok.  The cup isn't deep enough.  The white part of the egg oozed out onto the counter.  Next time I will put it in a bowl.  We haven't tried the marshmallows.  My daughter and husband were away all weekend at a soccer tournament.

I couldn't resist adding this picture.  Binxy is about to yawn.

She is not amused with me laughing at her.

My son had a basketball game on Saturday.  Basketball is an extremely stressful game for me to watch.  I sit in the bleacher with a strange grimace on my face.  Even when his team is ahead I know at any moment the score can change.  The score did change.  His team lost their first game of the season.  That's sports!

The rest of the weekend was very calm.  I managed to get a few gifts wrapped.  The box to my family in Arkansas must be mailed this week.  The weather was so pleasant.  I sat on the deck and crocheted. This time of year is always so busy.  I enjoyed relaxing and taking advantage of the unseasonably warm weather.

Bru and I making the most of a mild December day.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

I was so proud of myself for being able to create the first post.  Now my mind is already spinning with things I would like to do next.  I want to figure out how to make the pictures appear slightly larger.  I hope to link to Ginny's Yarn Along.  Posting comments on other blogs is a little baffling.  I still show up as a shadow person next to my name.  Too many things!

Ok, so photo is now enlarged!!

We have had our lovely artificial tree for fourteen years.  It cost us about $60 from Michael's when we bought.  In the past it has held many, many ornaments collected over twenty plus years.  This year it's displaying an array of no-break balls and other shiny not my traditional goodies.  I'm not sure why but I didn't feel like doing the traditional.  Maybe it was the lack of enthusiasm for decorating from the teens.  I hate to say, maybe it was the thought of packing it all away once the holiday's were finished.  Anyway, I didn't do it.  This is what we have this year.  I like it.  The teens and Dan seem happy.  The cats and dog have not knocked it down.  This is our tree.  That being said of course I'm already thinking about next year.

No. I'm not going to a tiny tree!!  My thought was to crochet snowflakes to go along with my shiny balls.  I started these on Tuesday.  I don't think I'll have that many to add this year.  The yarn is Love this Cotton from Hobby Lobby and the books is "100 Snowflakes to Crochet."  I have 97 to go!

We'll see how many snowflakes make an appearance next Christmas.


Tuesday, December 8, 2015

I'm trying...

Let me start by saying I am the least technical person I know.  I have a computer, iPad, cell phone, and various other gadgets that need batteries or electricity.  My lack of knowledge in this area might be an issue if it wasn't for the fact I have a very technical husband.  The children are rather helpful with tech support as well.  My habit when something electronic isn't working properly is to exclaim rather loudly "FIX IT!!!"  Dear husband works from home, unfortunately he hears this more times than he cares to admit.  I've also been known to bother him for tech support when he's away on business trips. He's a very understanding man and I am a very lucky woman.  That being said, I'd like to have a tiny bit more understanding of the technology that surrounds me.  I have loved reading blogs for many, many years.  I rarely post comments, afraid of what to say or how to say it.   My hope with this blog is that I can not only show some of my crafts and daily life but I can be a little more tech savvy on my own.  Here's to trying something new and learning!  

Here's to trying something new and learning good things!  Lisa