Sunday, November 30, 2008

Christmas Village - pt 2

It wouldn't be a village if there wasn't a store in town. The fence is sturdy and straight, made of rock, and the little girl needs a boost by her mom to be able to see the wonderful things through the window. Too bad the store is closed, so there will be no toys going home with her tonight. A happy lady has a basket full of goodies for her family.

Every town has a house where the super wealthy family lives. Here is the rich lady with her little one bundled up in a carraige, ready for a stroll to town. The shop keeper walks by with her scarf wrapped tight to keep the chilly breezes away.

I think these villages are really fun. It is not over yet! There is more to see....

Friday, November 28, 2008

Christmas village -pt 1

I have to admit, I am one of those people who like to set up the miniature villages at this time of year. I remember going to visit a family who were friends of my parents, and they had a table dedicated to one of the most wonderful Christmas villages I have ever seen. I would stand there and look at it for what seemed to be the entire time we were there. When you are 10 years old, everything at Christmastime is most wonderful, but that really made an impression on my young mind. Over the last several years, I have put together some wonderful scenes of my own.

I can't resist checking out the village stuff in the stores. The prices usually surprised me and I would walk away from it all empty handed. It is hard to start up with just one house, you know what I mean? I also want different village things... not the usual scenery. So, when I found a box of paper houses, I could not resist them. They were made and sold in Canada and I think I found them on eBay. It came on flat sheets and you punch them out of the perforation, fold the pieces into 3D forms, and then fit them all together. Viola - a village house is born! This is what kicked off my miniature Victorian world. Finding the people and accessories was a piece by piece hunt. What fun!

There were six buildings in the box and this is the farm house. Click on the pic for a bigger view. There are deer behind the house, and horses. Simple fences, a boy bringing in the tree, and another bringing in firewood. Kids building a snowman, and you can't see her, but a girl feeding a duck...she is behind the horse and sleigh.

Many more scenes of my village to come......

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy - happy - happy

Thanksgiving everyone!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Proverbs verse for today

I received an e-mail from a man who was a teacher in the Christian high school I went to. It has been alot of years since I heard from him. He mentioned how he has been guest preaching since his last mission trip, and had just received a double Masters Degree from Seminary. He and his beautiful bride will be leaving on a missions trip with Wycliffe Bible Translators in January. It was a blessing to hear from him!

Thus, bringing life to my Proverbs verse for today:
"Like cold water to a thristy soul, so is good news from a far home country." Prov 25:25 - Amplified Version

Monday, November 24, 2008

The shortened days of winter - pt 2

Since the days are getting shorter and there is less light for our senses to take in, we are more prone to feel it's effects emotionally. Some people feel it enough to be diagnosed with "seasonal affective disorder" (S.A.D.) or also known as the winter blues. We wanted to take a bit of an active approach to this phenomenon and decided to make a small investment on our interior lighting. Sounds good...

I know that I had asked you all out there about your thoughts and experiences with the energy saver light bulbs. We did not choose this option! The way we decided to go is with Enhanced Spectrum and Full Spectrum bulbs. This is the bulb of choice when it comes to marine fishtanks and plant-growing lights. Obviously, these bulbs better mimic the range of colors in natural sunlight which makes your brain think that it is light out longer. Still sounds good.....

Nothing out there is going to perfectly replace our closest cosmic star, and there are plenty of marketing geniuses who will attempt to persuade you otherwise. Some products will demand wads of cash for their latest man-made miracle light. I didn't want to fall into that sort of trap. The small investment we spent really wasn't that significant. I saw the light bulbs in Target and decided to give them a try. GE has their "Reveal" bulbs with both enhanced and full spectrum options. I think I had to fork over just under $20 and got a variety of both types. We decided to replace the bulbs that we have on the most and didn't bother with the ones in the bedroom or in the ceiling lights that were only used occasionally. Still sounding good.....

There is a noticeable difference when they light up a room. Gone are the yellowed hues from the 99-cents-for-a-four-pack bulbs. A crisp, clean, bright light shines out from our lamps now. I have to admit that I like them! We will see what we think of them in February and whether or not we are S.A.D.'ed. Sound good?

Friday, November 21, 2008

The shortened days of winter - pt 1

The days are definately getting shorter. The tilt of the earth has almost reached its peak but the ever increasing absensce of light presents its own set of consequences.

Yesterday, I flew home after work in order to finish up the front yard raking job before it got dark and before it starts getting snowy. This always winds up having to be done twice at my house because our annoying catalpa tree looses all it's leaves as soon as the temperature dips below 45 degrees and it's leaves are about a big as dinner plates, so they need to be removed reasonably quickly from my already suffering grass in the front yard. When those humungous leaves get wet, they are like sponges and become super heavy which equivalates to maximum raking un-fun-ness. Have I ever mentioned that I really hate that tree? I think I have, so I won't go on about that.

Anyways, I raked my front yard about a month ago and drug all those leaves on the biggest tarp I own, which is about 10'x15' (we used to cover a pop up camper with it) into the corner of our back yard. I made 5 trips with all the leaves (from just one side of the front yard) and piled them up pretty high. This makes sense since I am contributing to nature by feeding my compost pile (that sounds pretty good, doesn't it?) and providing a shelter for a stray mouse or chipmunk or something like that (so compassionate to wild animal welfare). I would have filled at least 40 leaf bags (I kid you not) if I chose to bag them, and after bagging the first year we lived there, I have vowed to not do that ever again.

The people across the street from me fill about 6 bags and they are happy as clams together raking their leaves up. Making a fun dad-son-daughter event out of it. I, on the other hand, am miserable and blistered and aching from my unforgiving yard, wondering why I decided to not have sons who would eventually take this task over for me. Sparkie is not allowed to be around for this sort of thing, since it would be a Wood-tick-stock event, and he would be the campground and concession stand. It seems like most of the trees growing on my street are on my lot and only one of those trees is a pine tree which presents it's own unique pine-needley mess in the back yard. That is another story in itself.

"Why do you have to do the yard twice?", you ask? Because the tree in the other side of the front yard hung onto it's leaves until about a week ago and, I kid you not, my front yard looked like it had never been raked at all. There were so many leaves on the driveway that you couldn't even see the asphalt. Have you tried to shovel snow that is over a leaf covered driveway? Take my word for it, you don't want to let that happen. And after the leaves were getting mashed into bits from being driven over and parked on so much, I had to face the fact that enough was enough. *Sigh* Back to square one. So out I went with the rake and the gardening gloves and the gigantic tarp to clean it up again.

Although the job was much faster and I didn't get any blisters this time, my mind couldn't help but think about how we never raked when I was growing up and yet our yard always grew just fine. Then I reminisced about how my brother and I used to do chores together and he would manage to have to go to the house to get something and then not show up for an hour and a half while I did all the work by myself. For a minute I remembered I had a leaf blower in the garage, but since I was almost done at that point, I just made my thoughts go elsewhere. I also tried to figure out how I might get my hands on one of those leaf sweeper/catcher contraptions that I could hook up to the back of the lawn mower so I'd have an excuse to ride around on that thing one last time before winter hits. But mostly, I thought about how I was only cleaning up the front yard of my lot and how the back yard was just going to have to fend for itself this year. After all, the days have become too short to do that much raking after a day at work.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Embossing queens

We had our Stampin' Up Christmas card class last night. A nice group of ladies came out in the 25 degree weather and we heated things up with embossing! When I think of a classy looking card, it has raised metallic embossing on it. There isn't anything that screams Christmas better than silver and gold, is there?

The fancy technique we did was cracked glass and you can see my example here
After several layers of embossing, you chill the paper and then bend it to get it to crack, just like a broken mirror. How fun! Controlled disasters for Christmas!!

Monday, November 17, 2008


There is one thing that I have noticed over the years with Sparkie. He is a puppy of routine. Here's what I mean.
- As soon as he is let out of his crate in the morning, it's time to go outside
- Shortly after that, it's time for breakfast
- If the keys are jingling and we are leaving the house and he wasn't invited to go, it's time to go back in his crate
- If he is outside and comes as soon as I call for him, it's time for a treat
- When he arrives at "grandma's house", it's time for her to give him cheese
- As I stand in the kitchen to iron dress clothes, it's time to chew on rawhide
- When a sweater is put on, it's time to go outside or even better, for a car ride
- When people eat, it's time to sit and watch
- When dinner is over, it is time to jump all over the cats and play with toys
- When the tv is shut off for the night, it's time to go outside
- After that, it's time to go back in his crate
- While in the crate, it's time to get a bedtime snack

There are more acts of consistency he has but I can't think of them right now. He is so fun to have around but sometimes I don't want to have to be so consistent. I guess it's a good thing I don't have kids!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Turkey deal

I needed to stop a Hannaford today and saw they have a really good selection of turkeys for $.49 a pound. You are probably thinking, "Are you kidding me?" and to that I have to answer, "No, I never kid about something as good as this."

Every year, since Vince and I have been together, we have Thanksgiving with his parents. My MIL doesn't ask for many visits, but she does ask for this one. So we go there, eat until we are about to drop, and then come home to no leftovers. A house without the lucious aromas of turkey and stuffing, no pumpkin pie to have for breakfast the next morning, not a dripping that can be made into gravy. That is just not Thanksgiving goodness. So, every year on the weekend after Thanksgiving, I do the whole she-bang for the two of us. Needless to say, I really prefer a smaller sized bird and was able to find a 14-pounder today! I picked out my Thanksgiving turkey and paid a whopping $7.19. I still can't believe turkey day is only a week and a half away!

Go to Shop 'N, I mean Hannaford, and get yours before they are gone. The sale price is on until the 27th. Or did you get your bird already?

Friday, November 14, 2008

Too cute

How fun is this thing? I found the pattern for this pumpkin here and just had to try to make one. It was pretty easy. For you knitters, it is a quick project, and it is felted which makes it even more entertaining!
Let me know if you make one!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

November Stampin' Up Class

Hey Creative Ones! Join me on November 18th at 7 p.m. for the Stampin' Up class! We will be making two Christmas cards, swapping cards with each other, learning a new technique, and just having fun with each other. Hope you can make it!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

The mystery of chocolate

I don't know why, but this works. Get out your calculator and try it!

1. First of all, pick the number of times a week that you would like to have chocolate (more than once but less than 10)

2. Multiply this number by 2 (just to be bold)

3. Add 5

4. Multiply it by 50 -- I'll wait while you get the calculator

5. If you have already had your birthday this year add 1758 .....
If you haven't, add 1757.

6. Now subtract the four digit year that you were born.

You should have a three digit number

The first digit of this was your original number (i.e., how many times you want to have chocolate each week).

The next two numbers are YOUR AGE! (Oh YES, it is!!!!!)

THIS IS THE ONLY YEAR (2008) THAT THIS WILL WORK. Now go have some Chocolate!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

It's over

Finally, election day is over. I have been looking forward to this day ever since the media asked Hillary if she was going to run for president...and that was quite a while ago! I've never been a fan of politics or debates. Promises spoken but not made good. Financial maneuvers or corporate agendas. It's just not me.

I wonder how long before the election signs will be removed from the roadsides. How long before people will stop boasting about their man's "victory". How long before the focus of the country will be for the common interests instead of the divided ones.

The reality is, it isn't over. This election result didn't rattle me, as they have done to me in the past. My confidence is not placed in a man who will soon take a position in a governmental office. Instead, I can find peace in the fact that this election didn't rattle God. It is just another step towards His perfect agenda for mankind.

To Him be the glory, yesterday today and forever!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Do you care enough?

Does your right matter?
Making the time to get to your polling place.
Do you care enough to vote today?

Does your voice matter?
The freedom to speak through a ballot cast.
Do you care enough to vote today?

Does your country matter?
Of the people, by the people, for the people.
Do you care enough to vote today?

Does your future matter?
Shaken but more determined than ever.
Do you care enough to vote today?

We all matter.
Our right, our voice, our country, and our future.
Do you care enough? Then vote today.

~P. Baim 11/4/08~

Monday, November 3, 2008

Fun Personality Test

I received this in an e-mail and thought it would be fun to share.

If you are honest with the questions, the answers can be pretty interesting. Write your answers on a piece of paper, and NO cheating!! The answers are at the bottom.

Colors and your Birthday

1. Which is your favorite color out of: red , black , blue , green , or yellow?
2. Your first initial?
3. Which color do you like more, black or white?
4. Name of a person of the same gender as yours.
5. Your favorite number?
6. Do you like Flying or Driving more?
7. Do you like a lake or the ocean more?
8. Write down a wish (a realistic one).

When you're done, check out your answers. (Don't cheat!)


1. If you choose:
Red - You are alert and your life is full of love.
Black - You are conservative and aggressive.
green - Your soul is relaxed and you are laid back.
blue - You are spontaneous and love kisses and affection from the ones you love.
yellow - You are a very happy person and give good advice to those who are down.

2. If your initial is:
A-K You have a lot of love and friendships in your life.
L-R You try to enjoy your life to the maximum & your love life is soon to blossom.
S-Z You like to help others and your future love life looks very good..

3. If you chose:
Black: Your life will take on a different direction, it will seem hard at the time but will be the best thing for you, and you will be glad for the change.
White: You will have a friend who completely confides in you and would do anything for you, but you may not realize it.

4. This person is your best friend.

5. This is how many close friends you have in your lifetime.

6. If you chose:
Flying: You like adventure.
Driving: You are a laid back person.

7. If you chose:
Lake : You are loyal to your friends and your lover and are very reserved.
Ocean: You are spontaneous and like to please people.

8. This wish will come true.