Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!

Alicia made this little nativity set out of Sculpey Polymer Clay for me. Her father helped her bake it one day while I was out. Isn't it adorable? I love it! Click on photo to see more detail! Merry Christmas to all of you!

Sunday, December 20, 2009


Thought you might like to see some ornaments we made at the Sparkle Festival in Corning, NY. Unfortunately, we did not go this year. These ornaments are from past Christmas seasons. Audra made the ornament above with a little help from some glass blowers in 2006.
That same year, Alicia made the snowman.
Allen made the Christmas tree.
The girls and I went again in 2008. We noticed that no one was making any ornaments having to do with the real meaning of Christmas. So Audra made an angel.
Alicia made the three wisemen...
and I made the manger scene. If you haven't gone to the Sparkle Festival at Corning Glassworks, I highly recommend that you go. It's too late this year...but next year, check it out! These ornaments will always be special to us.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Birthday Lunch

On Wednesday it was my birthday. I never got a chance to do anything special at all, but today my husband took the day off from work. We went out to do a little shopping this morning and then went out for lunch at the Rheinblick. Here is a picture of my mulled Christmas wine called Glüwein and Jamie's beer (Paulaner). For lunch I had Hackfleischsosse and Jamie had the Schweinebrat Brötchen. It was all absolutely delicious! Oh...I almost forgot, for dessert I had the Bienestitch (bee sting cake). Jamie had an Apfelstrudel (apple strudel).

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Crazy Days!

I just checked the thermometer and it's 4° outside right now!
It has been crazy here with barely time to catch a breath. I don't like that. I prefer a little down time...but it's not happening. Yesterday started out with going to my Bible study, then a quick trip to our insurance office, then home to work on a "secret project" (can't write it here in case one of my kids reads it), then to the DMV office, home with more "secret project" working, quick hiding of evidence before a school bus came, running off to a swim meet, home at 7 PM to cook a quick meal, and shortly thereafter to bed. Today I took kids to school, went to my job cleaning a house, ran few errands, stopped at the library, home for a quick shower, and was cooking dinner when my husband called to tell me the high school swim coach had called him and Allen was ill. They were actually calling an ambulance just in case. I totally freaked out! Jamie went up to the school and called to say Allen was okay and coming home. Apparently he had not had enough to eat. His blood sugar level was way low and they were giving him juices and stuff to get him going. He came home just as I was running out the door to Alicia's orchestra concert. Jamie stayed home with Allen to make sure he as okay.
Now I'm home...and planning on making Allen a BIG lunch to take to school tomorrow. I wish I had pictures of the concert...but I am still working with a camera that has a broken flash.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Enjoying the Season!

It is Christmas season and I'm getting more excited about it. I'm getting a little shopping done. Just a bit at a time and it is starting to look like I am going to accomplish it after all. I took Alicia out shopping and then, a few days later, I took Audra. It was nice to spend a little time with each of my girls individually. Tonight Allen had 5 of his friends over to play board games. So...we had 6 boys ages 14 & 15 in the house. We went through quite a bit of food this evening. I really enjoyed having them over. They are a nice group of kids. I think they all had fun. I wanted to take pictures so I could put it on my blog...but somehow I got the feeling that that would just be a really uncool thing to do, so I refrained. Alicia stayed over night at a friend's house. Jamie, Audra and I stayed in the family room and watched a movie (The Polar Express) while the boys monopolized the living room with Apples to Apples and The Settlers of Catan.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Our Town is White!

Windy and bitter cold lately.I took these pics on the way home from dropping off Alicia at school this morning. The white stuff arrived yesterday and today...and a little bit on Wednesday too.
Too early to these pedestrians probably are either on their way to work, or to the bank.
A street in my neighborhood.
Finally, my humble abode where a hot cup of coffee and my slippers await.

Sunday, December 06, 2009

Not going to get away with it....

I thought I'd cheat and use a picture from last year, but I realize I'm not going to get away with it because there is white stuff in it. We have not had any snow other than a dusting so far this year. Other than the white stuff...the town's pavilion is decorated like this again. And other than no white stuff, it is beginning to look a lot like Christmas. My own home is decorated as much as it is going to be this year and I have a little shopping done, but not much. I went out and about on Friday...but I was not feeling well, so I cut it short. I have a terrible cold. Audra was home with the flu for almost the entire week. This fall has been a terrible trial of illnesses so far.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Thank you, Lord.

Another Thanksgiving has come and gone. I am grateful for such a wonderful family. We all missed Dad this year...but we know he is in a better place now. The food as usual, was delicious...and I ate too much.
After gorging on turkey, dressing, yams, corn casserole...etc., we hung out. The teens and young people played a game. The traditional jigsaw puzzle was worked on. It was good just to be together.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Is it Thanksgiving yet?

Like this picture? Allen took it this summer. Thought I'd use it...because I like pictures on my posts and I have nothing in my pics that have anything to do with today's entry.

It was a beautiful day...and I did not go out and enjoy it. I cleaned a dentist office and then did some errands on the way home. I needed to buy carrots for the turkey soup I'm making with the leftovers from the turkey I roasted on Friday. Am I confused about the date? No...I realize that Thursday is Thanksgiving and that I will be eating turkey. I will be going to Martha's house. There will be many people there and I will not get any leftovers. Almost everything will be eaten up on Thursday and whatever is left...Martha will get. That is only fair since she roasted and hosted. I like leftover I took it upon myself to roast a turkey of my own on Friday. I did not wait until next week to do it...because Jamie is going to France.
(Again...nothing to do with today's post. A picture of us on Mount Cardigan in New Hampshire)
So I made soup, mopped my kitchen floor, dozed off while reading, watched Arthur with my daughter, ran to the store to buy bread since I was too lazy to bake my own...and I am now sitting and waiting for my son and hubby to come home so we can eat! The smell is driving me crazy because I am hungry!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Just another Saturday

More chronicling of my exciting life.
It's just another Saturday in our amazing household. Audra practiced tickling the ivories. They giggled quite nicely.
Allen went to swim practice at the high school and then came home and proceeded to make plans with friends. I was a very mean mother and made him do some homework before he took off.
Alicia and I baked peanut butter fingers. Tonight...I will be home alone. Alicia is staying over night at a friend's house. Jamie is working on our car over at Roy's house. Audra went to Abby's. Allen is hanging with Sam and Jacob. Maybe Sherman and I will take in a movie, what else?

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Obstacles and Bends in the Road of Life

I am really anxious now to get back to my grad work. I'm almost done...only two more courses and then my school internship. As many of you readers know (all 2 of you), I had to stop my studies because of my father's illness. None of us expected him to go so fast. I spent the day with Mom. I really miss Dad. I had a dream about him last night. I don't remember any of the details of my dream, just that he was in it. At Mom's, I just had to check to see if his coat was still hanging on the hook in the laundry room. It was. Along with his hat and sweater vest. Somehow that makes me feel good. I like seeing them there.

I just hope there are no more unexpected bends in the road for a while. There is good news! I can do my secondary level practicum with the same librarian that I was originally going to do it with. I wasn't sure if I could because she talked about retiring some day on her blog and that worried me a little.
Even though I am anxious about getting back to my studies, I am also strangely nervous about it.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

On to the next thing

We had a rough week, but God is good. Allen came down with the flu on Sunday morning, which explained why he was feeling so rotten at his cross country sectionals last Saturday. He missed most of school this week. I was able to communicate with his teachers and get some school work so he didn't fall terribly far behind. The varsity swim team season also started. I sent emails to the coach explaining Allen's situation so that the coach knew Allen was still interested. The coach also said that he would help Allen get into swimming slowly since he was recovering from illness. On Friday he went back to school and went to swim practice.
On Saturday there was a team building exercise with 6 different minivans full of teenage boys driving around town on a scavenger hunt. Jamie was one of the volunteer drivers. The game culminated at a team member's house in town with an obstacle course in the back yard.
I think the boys all had fun and it was a good way to kick off the season. Family members of the team were able to join in with the sharing of a meal.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Sectionals for X-Country

I know this picture is pretty lousy...but it's what I have! Today was a gorgeous day! Warm, sunny...a good day for a race. It was Sectionals for the X Country Teams in the area. Allen did not run his best. He got a bad cramp in the middle of the race. Right behind him is Dominik from Arcadia. Dominik is the son of a close childhood friend of I was pleased to see him in the same photo. In the end, Dominik came in ahead of Allen...but I think it was only because of the cramp. Next year, Dominik! Next year!And here is a little team building exercise after the racing was done!

Wednesday, November 04, 2009


I'm finally getting around to telling you that the swine flu has come to our house. The school called me on Friday to come and get Alicia because she had a fever of 100.5. That evening the coughing started.
All in all, she had a fairly mild case of it. Between doses of acetaminophen, she happily read or played with her dolls. By yesterday she was bored and I went to the school to get some work for her. Today I "home schooled" her. She is itching to get back to school. She no longer has a fever....but the cough is lingering. I talked to the school nurse today and she agreed that as long as Alicia has not had a fever for a few days she can come back to school in spite of the cough. No one else has caught it besides her. At this point, I think the rest of us will be spared.
These pictures were taken by Allen at the NY State Fair last summer.

Monday, November 02, 2009

My Runner

Get Ready! Get set!
Go! And they're off!
I have not been very good about blogging lately. Sorry. I've been a bit distracted by everything in my life for the past year. School. The death of my father. I'm going to get back on track hopefully. I'll start with a very belated post about my son on our high school's Cross Country team. He had such a great season and it is almost over. Only this week to go. Next week he starts swimming with the varsity swim team.
Go Allen Go!!!!
I have found new inspiration for blogging in my area at Bristolwood. It is a blog that I discovered quite by accident while googling images of the annual Halloween toiletpapering of Cheshire. I sounds strange but check out Gudl's blog too. She's the one that got me started googling for more images! I love all the photos they take of the area we live in. Yeah! More neighbors to get to know!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Favorite Kind of Day

Today is perfect! I am listening to Michael Card on CD, a pot of chicken soup is simmering on the stove...and I am working on some art work! Love it!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Mum Cheer

I am glad there is still beauty in the world. These are mums that Audra, Alicia and I received at Lindsay's bridal shower. She is my nephew Scott's fiance. The bright fall colors bring me cheer on such a cold dreary day. There was snow on the ground here when we woke up. Too early in the season for snow!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Teapot Project

I've been considering taking on a new painting project. Painting on china. I've never tried it before but I've seen it done. I have a very plain white teapot in my cupboard that looks so boring. I just love Blue Delft that is manufactured in Holland. Here is a picture that I borrowed from the internet. Isn't it just gorgeous? I'd love to have a whole collection of it. I've borrowed several such images so that I can get a feel for how to paint blue delft patterns onto my china teapot. I know it will be a far cry from the real stuff...but it could prove to be fun and satisfying in the end. So do you think it can be done?

Saturday, October 10, 2009

My Father-original post 1/16/06

Today is the memorial service for my father. In memory of him, I am reposting a post that I put up on January 16,2006.

This is a picture of my father. I just thought I'd show it to you because it is such a nice picture of him. I'll tell you a bit about him. How about 13 things?
1. He was born in 1932.
2. Is a polio survivor.
3. Can play the guitar and banjo.
4. Is an avid bird watcher.
5. Volunteers in nursing homes.
6. He loves Jesus.
7. Married to Arlene (my mom)
8. He loves reading to his grandchildren.
9. Enjoys studying the word of God.
10. Has 13 grandchildren.
11. Plays the harmonica.
12. He used to be a chicken farmer.
13. He loves me!

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Little Pieces

I went to my parents' house today. I'm not sure if I can ever get used to saying my mother's. I find myself walking around checking to see if the little pieces of my father are still there. His glasses on the dresser. His boots. His wallet...with some cash still in it. His banjos and guitar still hanging on the wall. I found a birthday card laying on the end table in the living room. It was for my mother who's birthday was on August 26...his signature on it with the little xxx's and ooo's he always put on.

Sunday, October 04, 2009

The home hearth

Sketched a little at Mom and Dad's house last Saturday. This is a sketch of the hearth there. The milk can is the can that my parents used for milk when my father worked on a dairy farm. The farmer let them take milk as part of his pay.

Monday, September 28, 2009


I woke up to thick clouds and gray sky. One of those days where you know it is just going to be drizzly rain all day long. Rachel called me and told me that I had better come right away. She said, "It's different today. He's not waking up and his fingers look gray." I left immediately. It's a 45 minute drive from my house to my parent's home. I got to Dad's bedside and held his hand and the tears rolled down my cheeks. I knew he was very close to death. I prayed that the Lord would come and take him. About fifteen minutes after I arrived, he slipped away from us. At that moment, the clouds parted and the sun shone down through the window and onto the bed where he lay. I honestly believe that it was a gift from God for us.
I had stayed over night on Saturday night and spent all day Sunday with him and Mom. Yesterday he seemed so tired. He told me that there was an entire parade of people waiting for him in heaven. He started naming them...but at the same time he was drifting in and out of sleep. I know he is having the most amazing reunion with so many friends and family who have gone before him.
He will be missed so much by us.

Saturday, September 26, 2009


There are just no words to put together about how I feel right now.

Thursday, September 24, 2009


I have not blogged much about my feelings or posted status updates regarding my father. I just don't even know what to say. Yesterday I really lost it. I was at CBS (Community Bible Study)...I really lost it and the women around me were wonderful. I'm just so thankful for my family that God gave me here on earth. I'm talking about my parents and siblings. My husband and children. My nieces and nephews. And I am also thankful for my sisters and brothers in Christ.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

The story of two runners

My husband and son are both runners. Here we have Allen at one of his high school cross country meets. He's doing very well. Today he placed 4th for his team.

Jamie was a competitor this weekend in the Finger Lakes Triathlon. He did great!
I'm very proud of both of them.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Oh but...just look at HER desk!

Every year at the beginning of the school year (and several times during it) I make valiant attempts to become organized. There are just so many papers to deal with. Papers for the school health office, homework policies, Awana, student handbooks, lists of teachers and their contact information, insurance papers, bills, loan papers, receipts, school supply lists, sports schedules, invitational schedules, fund raising papers, lists of important dates to remember, baby shower invitations, letters from religious organizations, volunteer papers, church papers...I can't even list it all.

How can someone who is aspiring to be a librarian be so unorganized? Well...luckily I have gotten a glimpse of a few different librarians' desks that are a complete jumble of papers and books...and these are good librarians too I should add. (I've also seen some spotless desks...but we are not going to mention them) Somehow I find this comforting.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Through the tunnel

Well I just don't know where I'm going anymore. I'm trying to be optimistic, but it is hard. I know there is a light at the end of this tunnel somewhere.

Tomorrow is Community Bible Study...that will help I'm sure.

Today I will go to the library to continue with my "volunteer work." This is rather amusing right now because no one knows I'm volunteering...including those at the library. I knew the children's department was a mess and needed to be straightened and shelf-read desperately. I went there on Friday to volunteer to do it...and no one was in the children's department save for a couple of mothers and little kids looking for picture books. So I just started in with the juvenile fiction books. I mean...who could object to someone straightening and making sure the books are in order? It took me about 2 hours to do a little less than half of the books in that section.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Here we go 'round the mulberry bush

At the Shaker village in Canterbury, NH there was mulberry tree. It was pointed out to us by one of the workers. She encouraged us to pick some and eat them.

I will say that they were absolutely delicious, although a little messy. I had never seen a mulberry tree before and wonder if they don't grow in NY state. I think they definitely should! I would like one in my yard. I ate several of them before moving on to the rest of the museum.

I also wonder why in the nursery rhyme, it is called a mulberry bush. It was definitely a tree.