Monday, December 31, 2012

So Christmastime was great...

...I loved it, and I am sad that it is over, and I am trying not to think about how far away it is again.

From the Honcoop Family Party on the 23rd, to our own RanHonFam celebration on the 24th, dinner at Lonnie & Debbie's on Christmas Eve, to a quiet Christmas Day with Christmas movies and a turkey dinner, to the finale at the Likkel Family Party on the 26th, it was all good. Very good...

 
Dillon got a new microphone! Jess seems excited...

 
Tiffany does not want to be interviewed...imagine that!
Why does Dillon always want to interview someone?
 
Caitlin received sibling ridicule for having the largest boxes, so she did penance by doing clean up.
Also please note my left foot in the bottom left corner of the picture...
Yes, I WAS THERE.
 Better blow that one up for the photo album...
Jess, as usual, got a stack of books for Christmas...It always looks like he leaves the party with a pile of homework. Thankfully, that's not how he sees it...
Daisie got a new bed with a bolster and she loves it. So nice to have something on which to lay your head when you are reclining...What a life!
Olive gave Dillon a present by letting him catch her, and hold on to her...a rarity as usually she just barks in his face. She was full of good will...
Olive also got a new cushy pad for her crate, but was much more interested in shredding the wrapping paper as soon as it hit the floor...So helpful, that one.
And please note here, Randy's foot is in the upper center of this shot, proof also the HE WAS THERE!
 
Actually, we do have proof that we were all together...
And that was the best part of our celebration...
Everyone gathering together.
 
I can't help feeling rich -- and I'm not talking about the presents. We are blessed to be busy with many family gatherings, and to leave each one full of good memories of our time together.
 
Can't wait for next year!
 
 
 
 

Friday, December 14, 2012

Christmas Crafting Fun...


I had a delightful day of crafting this week. The Farmer was out of town again, so there were no constraints on my time as far as cooking goes…I could make a mess and leave it until the project was finished.

This always inspires me…

And I was coming off a conversation with my friend, Joan, in which she related the advice of a decorating guru who said you could decorate your house for Christmas in one hour. Be ready for company that night…

We laughed heartily…

I think it takes me one hour just to move the folding chairs, the vacuum, the other seasonal knick-knacks, and the candle collection just to GET to the Christmas decorations.

However, one point that he made stuck with me. His theory was that you focus on the high points: your entry, your mantel, and your staircase, if you have one. Apparently, these ‘cry out’ to be decorated.

And that would mean that my staircase was crying a lot – because it was conspicuously undecorated. For years, I had wrassled a lighted garland, all 30 feet of it, into place on the banister, occasionally changing out the ribbons that tied it in place. But last year, I gave up on it, and freed myself from the wrassling, and the hassling, and hoping it would all stay lighted.

A naked staircase…not good. It was starting to get to me.

Fortunately, I had a brainwave about how I could combine a large spool of red pom-pom fringe (a Goodwill treasure -- $4!) and a 30 foot long roll of burlap – which I had almost returned because I didn’t know what to do with something so long… $4 from Michaels.

It was a lot of pinning…

And a long line of stitching….


But it was simple and fun, and I think it turned out pretty well.
 

No more crying from the staircase!
 

There was much more day left, so I cut and sewed a Christmas pennant banner. These are so easy and so festive.
 
 
 

I even made a mini to hang over my retro carolers.
 

It was the kind of day I dream of having during the Christmas Season…Christmas music, crafting, cheery results. It will go down in my memory as a special day… Too many years, it never happens. In fact, my last memory of such a day, dates back to when I was sewing a wool cape and satin party dress for Caitlin’s American Girl doll. Oh, what fun!

Hope you’re enjoying some fun that thrills your heart too. Christmas anticipation…just the best!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Jingle Bell Running...

Caitlin, Emily, Carol

Once again, Caitlin, with her Dickson Medical Clinic family, ran the Jingle Bell Run in Bellingham. It’s become a Christmastime tradition that I think I would miss if she decided not to run…

…But not enough to run it myself. Thankfully there is a walking option available.

Anyway, we picked up Olive so that she could join in on the fun. She was so excited and relieved to see Girl!
"Girl! Girl! I haven't seed you for ONE hour, Ithoughtyouweregoneforever!"

And the Jingle Bell Run is virtually a Dog Parade anyway…So many happy dogs, big and small, walking along…
 

And a couple of mini horses…

I’ve never seen suspenders used this way…
 

There was even a goat, but I missed getting a picture of that…And I missed getting a picture of the DMC trio running at the start. I was told they are somewhere in this…
 

They all finished well – and got interviewed about their trend-setting costumes.
 
Girl does make a pretty cute Leg Lamp! 

And then it was off to the Hilltop Restaurant, and a scrumptious late breakfast…No wonder I love this Christmas Tradition! First, a cold morning (with no rain this year!!!) outside cradling a cup of hot coffee, and festivity all around; then more deliciousness with a hot breakfast.

And I don’t have to wear a costume!

Later that afternoon, we headed to Stoney Ridge to get our tree. Jess came along for the event…He hasn’t been along for a few years now.

Of course, we headed over to the stands of cut trees – which did not have very many leaning on them anymore. I said to The Farmer, “Hmmm…We may have to go out and cut one. There aren’t many left.” He replied, “What do you mean? What is wrong with this one?” and grasped its top and pulled it from the stand. Jess helped him turn it to look for a shy side, and there wasn’t much of one…I said, “You’re right…This one looks good to me!”

Within 3 minutes of arriving at Stoney Ridge, we were in line to get the tree shaken…And Jess said: “I came along for this?!”

That’s how empty-nesters roll, kid.

Of course, then we had to go see Moses, the camel, and visit with multiple people, so we still didn’t get home for a long and cheerful hour.

Finally on Sunday, we put it up and decorated it…And Caitlin gave me a wonderful Christmas gift.  She put the lights on it for me!! I didn’t even ask her to do it…I received the gift with joyful gratitude – and mother-guilt…allowing my kid to do something I hate to do…Oh my! It’s hard to be a recipient after all those years of mothering.

But I’ll work on it…’Cause I think I’m gonna like it.

Here’s the tree in all its eclectic themed glory. I’ve seen many prettier, but that doesn’t keep me from enjoying my own random collection of ornaments, old-fashioned multi-color lights, and the wonderful scent of fir. I know that cut trees are costly – but I figure that you can’t get any other flower arrangement so large and so pretty for $50 bucks, not to mention it lasts a month…

Excuse me while I go sit in a chair and gaze upon it…

 

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Olive turned 2...


Olive turned 2 on the 2nd of December – her golden birthday already. Sweet! We kept her celebration simple, so don’t feel badly that you didn’t get invited to the party…Only Daisie and The Boss and I did…

And it was short – very short…but we did have cake!
 

Olive was thrilled with her 2 bite cupcake, and it barely lasted that long.
 

Daisie got a 2 bite cupcake too, but when she snarfed it up, all the frosting ended up on the roof of her mouth. She was pushing and pulling her tongue over it trying to clear it out. I’m sure it felt like a mouthful of peanut butter does. While she was working at it, cake crumbs were cascading from her mouth onto the floor. Well, ALMOST onto the floor. Olive positioned herself under Daisie’s open mouth and cleaned up the crumbs that were falling like snowflakes from it.

Those dogs know how to have fun.

Olive also got a present from us, carefully selected to allow for optimum life span, and I am happy to report that though buzzy bee no longer has wings or a rear end, he is still mainly intact and ready for fun.  Ten days is pretty good for any toy that Olive gets!
 

We’re also very happy that in her second year, Olive has lost her taste for furniture, and is much more predictable in her frenetic activities…Still frenetic, crazy and unceasingly playful, but less destructive, and more obedient. You can see it pains her greatly to be obedient, especially when it requires holding still – but she WILL do it! A year ago, we didn’t know if that was possible.
 

In fact, we have hope that sometime in this decade, she might even sit on our laps for a while…instead of jumping up to press a toy on our face when we have finished playing, and she has not.
Seriously, she is much loved by all of us -- and so far, the love has outweighed how much she annoys us. She is a great little buddy for Caitlin, and a fair match for fighting with The Boss. She knows that she is one of us, an integral part of the family...

Oh, Olive – what would we do without you?

Daisie – don’t answer that…

Monday, December 3, 2012

Some days our walk takes longer...

...because Daisie feels she has a job to do. She caught a mole once --yes, just once --  and now feels a compelling responsibility to rid the farm of them. She is very earnest in her efforts...

It takes great concentration...and stealth...
 
 
{and then, right in the middle of the operation, the amateur videographer turns off the video...argh!}
 
Back to our special presentation....
 
And that's how it usually goes, but Daisie never gives up...Oh the elusive mole, vermin!
 
Speaking of walking, I got me some gaiters at Costco, and they have made my morning walks SO much more pleasant!
 
Now I can wear my short boots and keep my pant legs dry and my feet happy. My tall boots make blisters when I walk...hate that! The short boots are comfy, except that my pant legs drag in the wet grass, and I can't hose off the boots without drenching my legs. These are a great solution! Tough nylon, adjustable, strap to keep them under my boot and only 17 bucks!!
 
The only downside? I no longer have a legitimate excuse to skip a walk...
 
Oh well, there are too many moles left to hunt anyway!

 

About Me

Needing an outlet for various thoughts rattling in my head, I've created two blogs -- One about my real life (leslieisverbose.blogspot.com) and one where I can vent. (leslievents.blogspot.com)