Wednesday, December 31, 2008

As The Old Year Ends

May you be blessed with gifts of 

- gratitude for all that Heavenly Father provides

- health , strong in body and in mind

- peace that brings calm to your soul

- joy to fill your heart

- laughter that will brighten days and relationships

- friends and their support and encouragement 

- adventures to new places and new situations

- compassion for others

- ability and strength to act on your convictions

- family and the love they bring

Happy 2009!!!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Ten on Tuesday at Christmas Gathering #3

Here is my wordless entry for today.  

I hope the pictures gave you a glimpse into our day together.  It was wonderful!!

I do need to get photos from the other cameras that were around - Naomi and Jerry are absent on mine.  I think I was so engrossed in the moments that the camera took second place.  

Monday, December 29, 2008

Simple Daybook #22

For Today . . . December 29, 2008 - The last entry of the year!

Outside My Window . . . a snowy winter's day - temperature of -10 degrees Celsius and no sunshine

I am thinking . . . that Christmas was a wonderful celebration, even if we felt swamped yesterday

I am thankful that . . . all of our kids came home for Christmas and we had a whole day together to enjoy each other.

From the kitchen  . . .  scrambled eggs with veggies and lots of leftovers

I am wearing . . . jeans, a snowman sweatshirt, striped blue socks and slippers

I am reading . . . the last chapter of Three Cups of Tea

I am hoping . . . that Melinda is feeling much better tomorrow.  She battled the flu overnight and has to fly home to New York City at 8 in the morning.  She looked at rescheduling but there are no flights available until Jan. 6.

I am hearing . . . the 11 o'clock news on TV - it's taken a long time to do this entry today, what with internet outages!

I am creating . . . the last pages in my December Daily album - I have lots of catching up to do!

Around the house . . . a big mess!!  Gifts to put away, toys to get back in the toybox and some laundry to do.

One of my favourite things . . . . watching everyone open their Christmas stockings!

A few plans for the rest of the week. . .   taking Mel to the airport, creating, afternoon naps and game nights with some friends.

Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you - Mel and Tyler opening their stockings.  Can you see her baby bump?!

Pop over to The Simple Woman and join in on the fun!

Friday, December 26, 2008

Christmas Gathering #2

Our beautiful niece, Jill, was born on Christmas Day 23 years ago so yesterday we celebrated with her.  Ever since she was born, the 25th of December has been her birthday party day!  We had a Greek meal of chicken or shrimp souvlaki in pita shells and a variety of salads.  Dessert /  birthday cake was my sister's famous fruit pizza.  

And then we helped her finish the gingerbread cookie puzzle she'd started the night before,

opened presents, 

had snacks,

and finished the day with a long game of "Possum-opoly" - a version of Monopoly based on the Red Green Show.  There was lots of wheeling, dealing, auctioning and haggling before Tyler won!  Bob says there was also some cheating - and the girls did some napping before the marathon was over!!

We are so blessed to have these wonderful shared times with our family.  
Happy Birthday, Jill - we love you!!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas!!

"The people walking in darkness have seen a great light ; 
on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned." 
Isaiah 9: 2

And so He comes!  He comes to a crowded world, a world with no room for Him, a world with political problems and persecuted people, a world filled with busy-ness.  And they have no idea that out in the back, in a barn with animals, with no audience and no support, the Son of God has come.  He has come with the Father's planning and foresight to be all that we cannot be - perfect and sinless.  And He has come ready to take all our burdens and sins and wipe them out so that we may live and live abundantly. 

Will we have Him in our hearts and in our lives? 
Will  we go and find Him?
Will we walk with Him and listen to Him?

 What joy is ours with His promise!!  
What joy is ours this night of nights!!
What joy is ours forever!!

May your Christmas be joyful and filled with His love!

After candlelight service tonight, we snuggle down in front of the fire, with candles burning around the house, to a power outage in the whole area.    The fire burns brightly and we are warm.  Hopefully repairmen can have the problem fixed before it gets too cold and the water freezes!

Melinda and Tyler arrived yesterday around suppertime with Heather and Jonathan, after nabbing two of the last 4 seats on a plane, after being delayed for 2 hours, after missing their connecting flight from Calgary to Edmonton.    Thank you for rescuing them, J!!
We had supper together and then Tyler proceeded to get sick with the stomach flu.  He had a long night but seems to be on the mend now.  And today we saw a tiny live picture of our newest grandchild - just a tiny smidge weighing 12 ozs. but with a heart beating strong and fast, bones developing and a perfect tiny nose!   What a lovely Christmas present - thanks M & T for including us!!)

Monday, December 22, 2008

And the Sad News Is - -

that Mel and Tyler's flight from La Guardia in New York City was cancelled at the very last minute tonight!  They had checked the luggage, cleared security and were waiting at the boarding gate when an announcement was made that the flight wasn't going.  They quickly got in line at the Air Canada desk and took the option of leaving early tomorrow morning and flying to Calgary.  Most of the weather problems at Canadian airports are in the east so avoiding Toronto is a good idea.  

Please pray that these plans develop successfully - we really want to be together for Christmas!

Simple Daybook #21

For Today - December 22, 2008

Outside my window . . .  it's a winter wonderland with about a foot of snow and freezing cold temperatures of - 22 degrees Celsius.  It's been overcast and kind of a grey day. 

I am thinking . . . about how many things I want to do this week and the creative projects that will have to go on hold until next year.  I think I better start them in January!

I am thankful that . . . we have a snug, warm house with a lovely fireplace.

From the kitchen . . . Japanese Chicken Wings, Honey Wheat Buns and a Spice Pudding Cake

I am wearing . . . black yoga pants, pink golf shirt and rose colored fleece jacket plus thick grey socks and slippers

I am reading . . . lovely Christmas letters sent from our friends and the January issue of Creating Keepsakes

I am hoping . . . that Melinda and Tyler get away from La Guardia airport in New York City on time, connect safely through Toronto and arrive in Edmonton just after 1:00 a.m. - and that Naomi and Jerry's day has gone smoothly.

I am hearing . . . Rita MacNeil's Late December album

I am creating . . . a paper project with an heirloom twist to give as a gift

Around the house . . . the tree is up but there are no gifts under it yet - the living room needs vacuuming first.

One of my favourite things . . . sitting on the chesterfield late at night, with all the lights turned off and only the Christmas tree shining brightly.

A few plans for the rest of the week . . . well, since you asked!!  Mel and Tyler come tonight, guests for tea tomorrow morning, Heather and Jonathan with Helayna and Silas come tomorrow afternoon,  Na and Jerry with Meadow and Bob's parents for supper, appointment in Wetaskiwin on Wednesday, candlelight Christmas Eve service, dinner at my sister's on Christmas Day and our whole family home to celebrate on Saturday.  Good, good times ahead!!

Here is a picture thought I am sharing  . . . .

a friend at school made this for me a few years ago and I love hanging and displaying it every year.  

Be sure to visit Peggy at The Simple Woman to find more interesting daybooks. 

Sunday, December 21, 2008


Today is the fourth Sunday in Advent and our waiting is nearly over!!  

These banners were hung, one each Sunday, in our narthex at church.  They were created by women of our congregation and are beautiful pieces of fiber art.   Today during the morning service, the children of our congregation presented their program " Who is the Christmas Star".  They portrayed different characters of the Christmas story and the season, each trying to be the most important thing but in the end, Jesus is the star of Christmas - and our lives.  It was an awesome message from the sweetest messengers.  

And this prayer comes from our Advent Reflections book by On Eagle's Wings, an ecumenical Christian ministry serving remote and isolated areas of northern Canada.  It was written by Rev. Steve Meysing.

"Dear Jesus,
So many people want to rule over my heart and attention this month.  
But it is you that I long for as my Lord, my guide, my boss.
When I realize I am not in control, hold me close.
Use my comings and goings this month for your plans and purposes.
Help me see you at work and ever among us.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Christmas Gathering #1

Despite freezing temperatures and poor roads, Bob's family gathered to celebrate Christmas today.   For the first time we met at a local camp instead of a home since there are 45 of us now.  It's always nice to all be together and share time and laughter.  

We ate some favourite family food, like perogies and cabbage rolls - 

chatted with those we don't see often - 

visited with the whole family -

enjoyed this little one, her big brother and little sister -

played some games - 

and did a whole lot of cuddling in front of the fire with the camp cat, especially Chloe!  

Not everyone was able to come today so hopefully we can have some sort of summer gathering and then all the cousins and their families can get together.  

Friday, December 19, 2008

Top Ten at Christmas

One of the things we love to do at Christmas time - or any time we get together - is to play games with family and friends.  There are some pretty fierce competitors in our family now and every game session is intense, especially with Tyler and Jerry trying ( and often succeeding) at beating Bob!!  Here are 10 of our game favourites in random order:

1.  Jack Attack - also known as Sequence

2.  Mexican Train Dominoes

3.  Chinese Crib

4.  Spoons or Donkey

5.  Dutch Blitz

6.  Buzzword

7.  Scattergories

8.  Marbles - which we learned from Jonathan - his family plays this game for keeps - no mercy shown!

9.  Bid Whist - my Dad's favourite

10.  Uno - which Bob's mom taught to our kids and woud play with them by the hour when they were little

Some of these might even be under the tree for some people this year!!!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Top Ten at Christmas

Today, after a half day of subbing in social studies 10 and 30, I'm in the kitchen doing a little baking.  So here is my list of favourite cookies.  I likely won't get all of them baked this year but hopefully I might get to taste the others somewhere else (hint, hint to my Mom!).  In no particular order:

1.  Whipped Shortbread

2.  Peanut Blossoms

3.  Gingersnaps

4.  Fudge Cups

5.  Peppermint Cookies (Pioneer Woman has a good recipe for these)

6.  Oatmeal Raisin (Bob's favourite)

7.  Almond Raspberry Stars

8.  Snowball Cherry Cookies

9.  Fruit Drops

10.  Cranberry Nut Swirls

I wish you could all drop by for tea or eggnog and cookies!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Ten on Tuesday

For today's Tuesday column, I thought I'd share 10 fun online sites where I found some great Christmas gift ideas.  I know it's too late to shop most of these places now but you can check them out and maybe have them on tap for another time.  

1.  The first shopping I planned was for my favourite charity, Compassion International.  You can sponsor a child, give a one time gift, donate to the Global Food fund or help in a whole bunch of different ways.  

2.  If you are a scrapbooker - or know one :)) - and are thinking of hybrid or digital designing (which I love but have no clue about!), Designer Digitals has the oh, so creative Ali Edwards on their team and she has some amazing templates and word art over there.  There are a ton of other creative people with great products too!

3.  Stubby Pencil Studios have kid and earth  friendly art supplies.  I know some little ones who would love these things.  

4.  You can find beautiful fabric, patterns and tons of ideas at Sew, Mama, Sew.

5.  There are lots of jewellery designers selling wonderful little pieces through their Etsy shops.  Check Heather Ann Designs for cool beaded pieces. 

6.  For the outdoor enthusiast, Mountain Equipment Coop is a dream site!

7.  Anything for your home can be found at Home Outfitters.  Love this chocolate jug! 

8.  Books to get?  Go straight to Chapters and receive sweet free shipping if your order is over a set amount (which is never hard to achieve!).

 9.   Maybe you have a mom-to-be on your list - check Motherhood for some great ideas for her.

10.  Baby Gap has everything you could want for kids - like this dress coat -

or a onesie that would be great on any little boy -

or cute dresses for the little girls in your life!

Sorry I couldn't give you more images - Blogger is having issues!

I hope your shopping is nearly completed and that you've enjoyed planning and purchasing for those you love.  Have fun wrapping and cherish the joy when they open their packages.  I'm off to wrap some things so I hopefully won't be up until 3 a.m. one night!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Simple Daybook #20

For today . . . .  December 15, 2008

Outside my window . . . it's a mighty cold and snowy December day!  The temperature is -20, after being below 25 for most of the day and there's a breeze blowing which makes the windchill dangerously cold.

I am thinking. . . that I have lots of things to do this week - and now I have 4 days of subbing too!  But it will all get done and I'm going to savour each day.

I am thankful that . . . God answered our prayers again this week in an wonderful and real way.  He is so good and I am just amazed when I see what happens when we ask Him for help.  

From the kitchen . . . Polynesian Broccoli Stirfry with rice and hopefully some cookies yet tonight!

I am wearing . . . brown cords, a beige tshirt, burnt orange sweater, and slippers

I am reading . . . Country Woman, Chatelaine and Canadian Living magazines - looking for ideas for Christmas menus

I am hoping . . . to finish Christmas shopping tomorrow night!  And then get some wrapping done real soon.

I am hearing . . .   Christmas carols from We Are The Reason by Psalm 150 Music

I am creating . . . some pages in my December Daily album

Around the house . . . cards to write out, presents to wrap, projects to finish, baking to do, meal prep to get ahead of - it's going to be busy!

One of my favourite things . . . finding a new hairdresser who understands me and my hair!!

A few plans for the rest of the week . . . 3 more days of subbing, some shopping, baking, Bob's family gather on Saturday  and getting ready for guests on the weekend

Here is a picture thought I am sharing . . . 

our favourite Nativity set on the fireplace mantle.  

There are lots of interesting posts to read on the Simple Woman Daybook site.  

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Top Ten at Christmas

I think I'll do some listing this week to share a sample of favourite things that I love about this time of  year.   One thing that really makes this season special is the music so today I give you some songs that we enjoy listening to.  I think you can find all of them on YouTube.  And we don't have our tree up yet so instead I offer some fantastic trees that you might want to consider for your own home :))
1.  Amy Grant - "Gabriel's Oboe"

2.  Josh Groban - "Thankful"

3.  Celine Dion - "The Magic of Christmas Day"

4.  Diana Krall - "Count Your Blessings Instead of Sheep"

top of a turquoise tree, decorated with peacock feathers

5.  JoDee Messina - "A Joyful Noise"

6.  Reba MacNeil - "Late December"

Photo - "Baby's First Tree" in pinks and blues

7.  Psalm 150 Music - "Child of Peace"

8.  Barenaked Ladies - "Do They Know It's Christmas"

9.  Andrea Bocelli and Celine Dion - "The Prayer'

10.  Charlotte Church - "Panis Angelicus"

I've left the traditional carols for another day.

Pictures shared from Remodeling My Space.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Cold, Cold, Cold

Oh, the weather outside is frightful tonight!  -35 degrees Celsius with a windchill making it about 10 degrees colder.  I got a haircut today (I think I found a new hairdresser that's going to be great!) and then did some shopping in the city.  It was chilly running in and out and the warm stores seemed so welcoming!!  

The wish list is dwindling although I think I need to go once more to wrap it up.  I found some great 50% off deals already and the only place there was a line-up was at The Children's Place.  It was about 15 - 20 people long so I exited.  Even at Costco, where the parking lot was jam packed, there weren't any lineups.  Mind you, it's the first time I've seen all the tills open too. 

So now I need to get serious about wrapping things :))  which will be a great job while I'm inside, keeping warm and stoking the fireplace!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Poem of the Day

"Morning Surprise" 
by Garnett Ann Schultz

I found the world this morning
Neath a blanket pure and white:
The snow so soft and gentle
Had fallen through the night.
No footprints marred its loveliness
No earthly thing was there;
And only wintertime supreme
Had made the whole world fair.

I found the trees this morning,
Each one dressed in splendor true
With every branch all covered
By the nighttime snow so new.
How lovely was the hilltop
In the early morning dawn,
Just before the world awakened
As the nighttime fast was gone.

I found the world this morning
And I thought it quite a thrill
As the precious little snowflakes
Brought a charm to yonder hill.
It was pleasant at the dawning,
And my heart was filled with charms
When I found the world this morning
Snug and safe in Winter's arms.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Random-ness and Tags

A long time ago, Jill and Melinda both tagged me in the "Random Things" meme.  I've left it on the back burner for long enough!  In no particular order are some things I think you might not know about me :))

1.  I wish I had learned to play guitar and to swim.  I think both of these are life skills but it just never worked for me to do them as a child.  I know that my lack of skills has made me encourage my own children especially in taking swimming lessons.  

2.  I am quite particular about how things are put in the dishwasher and in the cupboards.  Every cup has it's spot and even the cutlery is sorted into sections in the basket before I turn it on to wash.  Once they are clean, the cupboards are arranged by color or size.  My girls will confirm this and it's strange, I know!

3.  Contrary to popular belief for most people, milk is the best thing for me to drink when I'm feeling nauseous.  

4.  My Bachelor of Education degree is in secondary education with a major in home economics and a minor in social studies - which would not explain why the majority of my teaching was in grade 3!

5.  I am a night owl.  It's nothing for me to start scrapbooking or baking cookies at 10 o'clock at night.  On the other hand, I'd rather stay in bed and read in the morning, which happens only rarely in real life.

6.  As babies all 4 of our children began sleeping through the night right around their first month birthday.  I have no idea what I did or didn't do to promote that habit but it was marvelous.  I don't think I really appreciated how amazing that was until our grandchildren arrived and they didn't do it!

So there you have it - everything you didn't know about me!

If you are reading this and you'd like to join in, please accept this invitation!  

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Ten on Tuesday

1.  It's only been snowing for a few days but it seems way longer than that already!  It definitely looks like Christmas now.

2.  Putting glitter on things is so much fun and gives a totally fancy look in just a few seconds!  The grade 3 class I was subbing in today did an art project with a paper plate and the last step was putting glitter on the outside rim.  They looked so pretty so quickly.

3.  Some nights are just total phone nights!  I had 3 long conversations with 3 different people tonight.  Good visiting time though.

4.  I got a yummy box of books from Chapters at the post office today.  Good stuff - I think the recipients are going to enjoy them.

5.  Two more outdoor scenes for you - 

I love how the inside image of the 'O' is shining on the house in a large form.

This one belongs to our good friends, D & D - it's so bright and natural looking.

6.  What's your favourite Christmas cookie or treat?  I'm curious!

7.  Meadow was dancing around the house yesterday, clapping her hands, and chanting "I so excited!  I so excited!"  Little ones are such a joy and if it's possible, even more so at Christmas time!

8.  I'm collecting some recipe ideas for our Christmas entertaining.  How do Watermelon & Prawn skewers, Carmellized Onion Pizza and Sliced Pears with Orange Chocolate Dip sound?   Mel has been forwarding some good ideas too :))

9.  Is there anything more beautiful than a  brightly burning fireplace flanked by poinsettias, a sparkling Christmas tree and glowing candles?  That's my vision of our living room - now to execute it!

10.  If you are looking for some decorating inspiration, go and visit:

Mary at the Little Red House - how clever are these decorations?!!  Love them!!

The gang over at Amongst The Oaks hosted a cocktail party - it looks so yummy and the decorating is beautiful.

Tam at The Gypsy's Corner has the most beautiful dining table set up.  Love her china!!

I hope you are staying warm in your little corner of the world.!!

Monday, December 08, 2008

Simple Woman #19

For Today . . . December 8, 2008

Outside my window . . . it's snowing - great big fat flakes - and lots more is predicted for overnight but then tomorrow afternoon it will turn to freezing rain as a warm front moves through!

I am thinking . . . that it's only 2 weeks until Melinda and Tyler come home!! I have many things to do before then!!

I am thankful that . . . God hears my prayers and provides healing where it is needed

From the kitchen . . . ham and mushroom pizza, a batch of cranberry almond granola, more poppycock and a pot of sunshine lemon rooiboos tea

I am wearing . . . black warmup pants, a pumpkin turtleneck sweater, a brown/black vest and slippers (seems to be my Monday uniform!)

I am reading . . . Lulu in Marrakech by Diane Johnson

I am hoping . . . to finish another cute sewing project tonight and move on to the next thing on my long list

I am hearing . . . logs crackling in the fireplace and the kettle boiling

I am creating . . . many top secret Christmas gifts!

Around the house . . . I put the creche up on the fireplace yesterday and have more Christmas decorations to unpack

One of my favourite things . . . is getting Christmas letters, cards and pictures in the mail - we've gotten 3 so far and 2 had lovely pictures of young families (thanks, J & M and B & C)

A few plans for the rest of the week . . . presents to wrap, shopping to finish, Christmas pictures to pick up at Costco, women's program at our church, 2 days of substitute teaching, Christmas in the barn celebration at our neighbor's and snow to shovel!

Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you . . . .

an ornament that Heather made for our tree.
I was going to show you our creche but Bob has absconded to Airdrie with both of the camera cords, I think!

There are more daybook entries to read over at The Simple Woman. Enjoy!
And I apologize that the Simple Woman logo is missing - Blogger will not pick it up tonight - urghhhhh!

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Advent 2

Today is the second Sunday in Advent and our pastor explained that the second candle in the wreath is for the Angels, who brought the good news to the world.  He  preached about persistence and perseverance because the world isn't always ready to hear the Christmas message.  One of his illustrations was a story about a man who wanted Christmas stamps for some cards and it took many tries, with stamps of winter, hockey, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and snow before he was able to find Mary and Baby Jesus on a stamp.  It really made me think about the symbols of Christmas that fill the world and our home.  I've been thinking too about Pastor Scott's statement that we still have time to clean out the corners of our lives before Christmas.  Our focus for December is so meaningful and very peaceful this year.  Thank you, Lord Jesus, for being at the center of our lives and drawing us close to you as we prepare for your coming again.

I found this beautiful picture of a wreath taken  by veralebail at family .  
It was taken in a flowershop in Vienna, behind St. Stephen's Cathedral.   I think her family travelled there for Christmas in 2005 and she has a gorgeous set of pictures posted.  This would be another beautiful place to visit again someday, especially at Christmas time!!

May your week be peaceful and filled with His light!

Saturday, December 06, 2008

We went to the funeral of our neighbor this afternoon, despite the slush and rain.  The church looked so festive with a huge hanging Advent wreath, a Creche, purple and gold banners and beautiful stained glass windows.  And the minister reminded us that despite our thoughts about a funeral and our grief at this loss, going home to our Heavenly Father is indeed a festive occasion.  For it is at the foot of the cross that we celebrate our Saviour and the eternal life He gained for us.    It somehow seemed appropriate that we should be reminded of life, living each day and treasuring those we love during these days of light, excitement and wonderment.    Definitely not how we thought we'd be spending a day in Advent but a reminder of  the reality of our lives and that everything happens according to God's plan.  

Friday, December 05, 2008

The Nativity Story

Tonight we watched this movie

in front of the fireplace.

And it was a great movie to see!  It totally calls you back to the reality of Mary and Joseph, their obedience to God's calling and the amazing gift that came to us with Jesus' birth.  I think watching this is going to become a Christmas tradition.  

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Something Seasonal

Spotted while I was out and about tonight.  We've gotten a bit of snow this week so it's looking a lot more like winter now.  And the temperature was cold overnight and during the day but it's warming up again.  Watch for rain tomorrow, the weatherman says !!!!!!

Wednesday, December 03, 2008


It was my day to be with Meadow while her mommy got some sleep after working all night and we had a marvelous time.

We were reading books on the bed and all of a sudden she was doing these perfect sommersaults!  Of course I missed the best ones but you can get an idea of it here.  

She was so busy playing today!  The easel required some power tools and resting on her arm.  It totally reminded me of how her Grampa does stuff!  It's just incredible to see how she copies  actions and is so aware of the world around her.  

I am so, so blessed to see her often and spend full days watching her grow and learn.  

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Ten (+1) on Tuesday

1.  Today is World Aids Day - There is so much suffering, misunderstanding and work to be done to help those who suffer.   Compassion International offers hope and is working for those with AIDS.  

2.  Snow is falling, lightly and softly covering the ground in tiny fluffy flakes today.  

3.  I watched The Amazing Race - Moscow on Sunday night and it was so interesting.  The mother - son combo was leading until he counted wrong and lost nearly an hour.  And then - he left the bag with their money and passports in a taxi and lost everything!  It was so real - one of those great big fears that every traveller has on every trip, I think!  I've always been interested in Russia and now I really want to visit.    No surprise about that, is there?!!  Show me a new place and I'll have good reasons why we should go there!!  The metro looked a bit frightening though.  Might have to take Tyler and Melinda so they could help figure it out!  

4.  Abbie at All In His Design shared this video in November and it struck me today as something to really consider during this season of giving.  How can I help so many?  I can help one girl in one place at a time .

5.  There's a lovely chicken roasting in the oven and it will soon be joined by potatoes and carrots - comfort food for a wintery day.

6.  Only 19 days until the shortest day of the year!!  And then the days start getting longer again - hurray!  I can hardly wait!

7.  I have 2 pages done in my Ali Edwards' inspired December Daily album and I am so happy to be doing this.  If you are feeling stressed and overwhelmed about the Christmas season, I suggest you try this little project.  It will help you to focus on each day and the enjoyment to be found along the way.

8.  I finished one sewing project last night and I'm on another one today.  I wish I could show it to you but it's a gift so I have to keep it top secret for now :))  I really am enjoying sewing again!!  And there are so many inspiring sewers out there  - if you are looking for inspiration, try: 

Pink Chalk Studio - definitely liked her little booth at a recent craft fair
HappyThings - where Amy has some cool bags - some would be great to use instead of wrapping paper
TheMerryChurchMouse - a beautiful quilt is her latest creation

9.  My goal for each day from now until Christmas (actually until Mel and Tyler come home on the 23rd)  is to do one 'kitchen/food/decorating' related thing and one 'sewing/scrapbooking/wrapping'  related thing each day.  I wonder how long that will last?!!

10.  I love looking through old pictures!  Today's particular batch was just from last summer so technically they aren't that old but they are from the past.  And I did a lot of smiling as I remembered our shared adventures - we have so many wonderful memories that we've made with family and friends.  I highly recommend going back into your albums or envelopes or stacks on a regular basis and enjoying those moments that you've captured.    

10 + 1.  I tried to give my blog a bit more festive look - what do you think?  Thanks to Kelsey for baking those cookies so that I could have such a great looking banner :))  And there are still a few things that I need to figure out to get it all perfect - bear with me, please!

Monday, December 01, 2008

Simple Daybook #18

For Today . . . December 1, 2008

Outside my window . . . after a sunny morning, the wind is blowing colder air into our area along with a forecast of flurries and lower temperatures for the rest of the week - I guess winter is coming after all

I am thinking . . . how pleasant it is to have a day at home to cook, bake and sew

I am thankful for . . . phone calls and emails from our children - I am so blessed to hear from them regularly and be updated on their lives

From the kitchen . . . a productive afternoon resulted in Creamy Lentil Soup and Blomidon Inn Brown Bread (thanks, Mel) for supper, Texas-Style Skillet for later in the week, and Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies and Poppycock tucked away for the weekend

I am wearing . . . black jeans, yellow polo shirt, winter sweatshirt and slippers - had to add an extra layer this week :))

I am reading . . . The Power of Simple Prayer by Joyce Meyers

I am hoping . . . that the gifts I ordered online this weekend will come quickly - can't wait to see them :))

I am hearing  . . . Amy Grant singing "A Christmas to Remember"

I am creating . . . a December Daily album, inspired by Ali Edwards

Around the house . . . Advent wreath on the table, Christmas quilt hanging in the living room, some cookie tins waiting to be filled and the last lonely pumpkin waiting for attention

One of my favourite things . . . fresh bread with butter melting on it!

A few plans for the rest of the week . . . bake gingersnap and shortbread cookies,  playdate with Meadow, a day of subbing for my friend, and lots of sewing

Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you . . . .

Now that December is officially here, I decided the last of the pumpkins better disappear!  I got 10 cups of cooked pumpkin - equal to 5 cans @ $1.99 = $10.00 saved - gotta love that!

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