Monday, December 31, 2012

HAPPY NEW YEAR!  We just would like to take this opportunity to wish every one a Happy New Year and say Thanks for visiting our farm on our blog.  We appreciate your interest and comments.  Happy 2013!

Oh, and this picture?  I finally found some advice I can follow.  I think I will use this as my New Year's Resolution!  :-)

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Christmas Eve day we treated ourselves with the best, most delicious freshly made cinnamon rolls ever.  The little country store just up the road from us makes these, caramel rolls, breads, cookies and just about everything you can dream up.  They are all so good.  These were still warm when we brought them home.

We were going to eat just one each, then put the rest in the freezer for later.  HA!  After the first bite that idea wasn't going to fly.  We have been eating them every since.  There's only one and a half left.  They are so big, all you can eat is a half at a time.  Cream cheese frosting!  A little butter, warm it up.  Oh my.

We had finger foods and snacks on Christmas Eve instead of making our usual soup dinner.  Then on Christmas Day I did make homemade yellow split pea soup.  This time it was in the crock pot, but not the big one, just the little one I usually use for dip and snacks.  It was the perfect size for just the right amount.  Yummy! 
We had a very blessed Christmas spending time with each other.  Daughter and I played a new computer game that we love.  Lots of laughing and snacks to eat.  We really treated ourselves.  She gave me a new pair of cowboy boots!  How cool is that.  I wore them all day yesterday in town and didn't even know I had them on.  Ahhhhh

We pretty much gave each other things we really love, such as new sweats.  We just about live in sweats around here.  So much work to do both inside and outside, its just the right thing to do.  That way we don't get our 'going to town' clothes all dirty working outside.

Here' a picture of our vicious guard dog Bella.  She has taken to sleeping under the stairs so she can guard her food bowl.  What ever happened to sleeping outside guarding the house?  She sleeps inside at night now, but somehow is able to hear every little sound. 

If ever we had a problem, she certainly would be the first one out the door.  Dexter would be right after her.  Those two would scare the heck out of me.  GRRRRRRR Wuff wuff wuff! 

Friday, December 21, 2012

I just knew I shouldn't have talked about our lack of snow a couple weeks ago.  Yesterday we really had a storm.  I think we must have received about 12-18" of fresh snow.  The storm seemed to be over a fairly small area as friends just south of us didn't receive more than an inch or so.

My sister in Washington was so surprised we got that much, she said they got rain.  You just never know up here.  We are only northeast of her a little bit.

The picture on the right is our front yard swing.  Check out some of the summer pictures on the blog for a comparison.  The left picture on on the bottom is of our driveway with the chicken coop on the other side.

Not only all the snow but we lost power around 1pm yesterday.  That happens frequently around here.  But it usually comes back on in a couple hours.  Yesterday it was nearly 7:30pm before we got it back on.  Because it gets dark so early these days (3:45pm)  we decided to eat early while there was still daylight, so we had salad, crackers and cheese and of course some spice cake and lemon bars from our Bible study the other night.  Not bad.

We just had a feeling things were going to be a little rough so we'd laid a fire ready to be lit as needed.  After our heater and lights went off that was the first thing I did, light the fire.  So glad we have our little wood stove.  It has saved our lives, or our comfort levels, so many times over the years.  We have cooked on it, dried our boots and coats near it, and heated our whole house with it.  So tiny.  And they don't even sell these any more.  What a shame.  Its perfect. 

We've also stored water for times like this.  We have our own well.  That has to have electricity in order to operate the pump.  Lots of water to drink but we don't 'buy' water to flush with.  Summer, we can dip water out of our pool, winter ... well, let's say the ice skating is great.

I was in the middle of baking a pecan pie when the power went out.  Fortunately the only thing I hadn't done was put it in the oven to cook.  So today, that will be my duty to get it done.

If it hadn't been so dark outside with the snow I might have gotten my new book read, my new scarf knit or so many other things I ended up not doing.  Oh well, there's still lots of time.

One last thing I wanted to share with you all.  If you don't watch The Voice on TV you probably haven't seen this yet.  The show wanted to do a tribute to Sandy Hook so decided to do it at the beginning of the show.  It had nothing to do with the show itself, just their way of remembering the victims.    Please watch this.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

 Surprisingly we haven't had much snow yet.  I suppose I will have to eat my words later this month but so far, just a few inches.  The first snow came and went away within just a few days.

The dogs are loving every minute of it.  They run and bark, Dexter is still digging holes ... in fact, daughter and I filled in around five or six large holes just above the driveway near the pool.  Looking out an upstairs window yesterday, he has dug another large one in the same place.

The holes look more like small bomb craters.  What happens to all the dirt?  There's never enough to refill the holes.  So we have to bring some over from the back of the property.   The temps have been in the teens at night (11 deg the other night) so there won't be any digging on my part until it warms up a little.

We are ready for Christmas.  What a relief to have all my boxes mailed to our out-of-state family members.  It always takes an extra week or so for the Hawaii ones.

Having company for dinner Friday night.  I think we will make my daughter's favorite chicken.  Boneless, skinless chicken breasts, about six in a small casserole pan.  Top with slices of swiss cheese, cream of chicken soup mixed with a tiny bit of white wine to thin the soup, sprinkle with bread crumbs and top with melted butter to moisten the bread crumbs.

Then just bake until the chicken is done and the bread crumbs are nice and brown.  It is sooo good.  Can't wait!

Took some pix this morning around 7am.  I like the first one so much, our favorite summer place to sit and read.  But there's no sitting and reading now.  The one on the right is our new garden area with the fencing around and our little blueberry bushes all safe from predators ... read that dogs.  They like digging in the soft dirt, laying on the bushes and plants.  Anything to get my attention.

Better hurry and get your Christmas shopping done.  Only 12 more days to go and today is 12/12/12.  How funny is that!

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Every morning when I get up I have seven little kitties waiting for me.  Cookie Time!  They all sleep in the house and by this time they are ready to go.  Starting on the left:  Reggie, Breeze, Willie, River, Big Mike, Angel and Petey.  They are all rescues from the shelter where Valerie used to volunteer.  Except Breeze, who Valerie rescued about 12 years ago.  (And don't you just love that new panorama feature on your cell phone?)

For the most part they all get along, but the calico River doesn't like anyone except Mike.  Little Petey is our mentally challenged kitty, he doesn't purr and doesn't meow.  But he is loving in other ways.  And as you can see from the picture, doesn't like cookies.  But he is addicted to dry cat food.  Go figure.

Yesterday was a big day for me, I got all my Christmas gifts wrapped and boxed up and took everything to the Post Office for mailing.  I have three sisters and a brother.  Most of them have kids, but we don't do a lot of gifts, just a few.  Plus mom.  I'm just glad what I had is in the mail now.

And now I can concentrate on the important things, like making Christmas cookies.  Love those!

I did finish one of the scarves I was making.  I have given it to a dear friend who helps me so much.  She helped me put this three scarf warp on my loom last year.  She is my weaving mentor.  I wouldn't know what to do without her sometimes.

I still have two scarves just the same on the loom, but now I don't have to worry about getting something done in time for anything.  I don't do very well with deadlines, and prefer to work on my own time.  That way I can take my time and do it leisurely.  And that's what makes it so enjoyable for me.

It started snowing shortly after I got up this morning.  I just went outside and brrrrrrrr!  Thermometer says its 35 out there but its a cold 35.  And still snowing.  We are supposed to be in for about and inch or two by tomorrow.  Our ski slopes have already opened and skiers are having fun. 

Better hurry ... only 18 days left until Christmas!

Monday, December 3, 2012

As Christmas once again approaches, I am reminded over and over the true meaning of Christmas.  I so dislike the phrase "Happy Holidays" that you hear everytime you purchase something at a store, be it gifts or groceries.  I have a bracelet that says "Say Merry Christmas" on it.  The way I look at it is if you don't know the meaning of Christmas, then don't celebrate it as such.  Call it Santa Eve, Santa Day or something else that's just about as secular.  But don't touch my Christ, my Christ-mas.

As far as I'm ranting about my pet peeves, does anyone else get aggravated when you tell someone "thank you" and all you get back is "no problem".   To me that is rude.  Why not just say "You are welcome"?

Enough of my complaining, after all it is Christmas or will be soon enough.  This is a picture of our Bella a couple years ago.  We put out presents for pictures, then everything was put back in our spare bedroom before wandering kitties and dogs found them.  We've had wrapped gifts chewed up, peed on, wrapping torn asunder ... so now we just wrap, admire, smell, feel, shake ... then back in the bedroom.

No chances for any mistakes any more.

So remember, when someone says Happy Holidays, please say back Merry Christmas.  And when someone says Thank You, the right response should be You Are Welcome!

And no, I'm not in a bad mood.  It just looks that way.   So Merry Christmas, and I really mean that.