Friday, December 7, 2018

“A little child…a shining star…a stable rude…the door ajar.
Yet in that place, so crude, forlorn,
The hope of all the world was born.”
~Author Unknown

I found this on a blog I just found (it is 6/8/18 today) -

I'm posting it ahead because I know I'll never find it, let alone remember it in December!

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Old goats, slow goats.

For the first time in a long time, my goats escaped.  My son received a phone call from the neighbor last Saturday morning to let him know that Leslie and Cinderella were on the loose.  He wasn't at home so he called me.  I was on my way home from town but unlike years past, I wasn't in a frenzy to get home and catch them. Because honestly, those goats are old just like I am. They are no more interested in going any farther to get something to eat than I am interested in traveling very far for food.  So I took my time and when I got home, I stood out back and sure enough, the goats were close to the fence nibbling on the neighbor's rose of Sharon bush.  All it took was for me to jiggle an empty bucket and the girls came trotting up the hill and back into the pasture without a problem. Also unlike years ago, they didn't run right back to where they escaped so I had plenty of time to gather the tools I needed and leisurely fixed the fence.

Saturday, September 15, 2018

It's been a long time.

 Doesn't this picture on the right look like a painting? It is photo I took on my camera - this is a footbridge in a little park in Spartensburg. Mom and I walked on it after our dinner that night.  Below is one of the Halloween wallhangings I made recently.

Now that I've made up my mind to enjoy my empty nest, I'm getting a lot of things done.  I am making one of the bedrooms in the house into a sewing room.  I refused to move my sewing machine into it until the room is cleaned and painted.  Hopefully my cleaning frenzy will keep going until I get the rest of the house done.  I'm just so easily distracted when I try to clean that I never really get anything done.  I've started setting a time for 15 minutes and working in the room for 15 minutes each night.  That seems to work for me - so I'm very happy about that.

But distractions are what I need right now. I'm so bone-tired of all the hate - mostly politic-based. I'm tired of one side generalizing the other. I'm tired of it all - I can only hope that everyone comes out and votes. We need change, we need someone we can look up to as our president. I realize that no president is going to perfect for all people but hopefully we can do a little better for the next 4 years. 

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Mrs. Bobbin

Mrs. Bobbin, who now holds the office of HouseCat
And when I'm so fed up with the horrible things humans do to one another, I remember that there are sweet little kittens. Next presidential election, Mrs. Bobbin gets my vote.

Thursday, April 5, 2018

A torrid love affair

 I've written about the ducks quite a bit. It's a little like Peyton Place around here I think. A couple of months ago, the male duck was killed by a car so Daisy duck has been moping around, harrassing the chickens, bullying the cats, and quacking for dog food whenever she feels like it.  Usually when I'm in the middle of doing something.

About the same time the male duck was killed, a Muscovy duck from next door decided to hang out in my chicken house.  I guess he figured that if all the neighbor's chickens were being treated well here, he might as well move in too.  This duck just hangs out in the bottom of the chicken house - eating the feed, muddying the water, and just looking around. 

I noticed Daisy duck starting to waddle around the chicken coop when the duck was there - I'll call him RedEye (he has a red patch around both eyes). At first Daisy would just sit and quack within sight of RedEye and over the course of a week or two, has started to get closer and closer. And then, *gasp*, they spent the night together last night. 

Does this mean ducklings in the future? I really hope not. I can't adopt any more animals although I would it is more like they've adopted me. 

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Lost things

I heard at church of the passing of an old friend of mine.  I was shocked and ashamed. Shocked because I never thought of this person as old and ashamed because over the years, I've done absolutely nothing to remain in touch.  Lives get busy, we have places to go, things to do, and I ignored a friendship that meant so much to me at one time. I will try not to make this same mistake again.

Another friend - actually someone I never met but through her writing yet feel as if I've known her forever is no longer writing. For years I've subscribed to Yankee Magazine. I'm not exactly sure why I've always loved this magazine but I just do. I can remember that it was always kept in the bathroom at my grandparents and reading it gave me a few minutes away from my brothers when I was very young and visiting my grandma and grandpa.  I can remember that the Yankee Magazine from that time was Reader's Digest sized. It had pages of advertisements for unique gifts from New England - everything from gardening equipment that you couldn't find anywhere else to pendents in the shape of a Maine lobster. But also like Reader's Digest, the size and format of the magazine has changed and is no longer pocket-sized but large, like other magazines.  It still does advertise those quaint little New England trinkets though.

For a few years, I didn't renew my Yankee subscription. I didn't have time to read them and I didn't have the money. I still don't have the money to spend but I missed the magazine - especially Mary's Farm - and was willing to give up a few coffees a month to subscribe.  I received my first magazine and noticed that the Edie Clark article this month was titled Leaving Mary's Farm. Awwwww. Edie apparently has had multiple strokes and will no longer be able to write. It's odd because I haven't read her for a while but now, I can't finish the article about the end of her career and the sale of her farm because, hmmmmm, I guess because I don't want to face another loss. 

If someone tells you that something horrible has happened, the words disappear. The feelings remain but the words are gone.  If someone writes that something horrible has happened, the words stick around and rereading them makes my heart over and over again.  But words can also soothe and I think that's why many people seek solace in poetry.  There's just something about the tweaking of words in such a way that one's life view is so affected. 

I've always felt rather sad that I don't have many friends. I think the reason for that is I'm a listener and not a talker. I am so much more comfortable listening or reading another person's words than I am contributing to a conversation. 

Sunday, January 7, 2018

It's going to be a great week!

My week is off to a good start - 2 loaves of bread just came out of the oven, I have a hot cup of tea, my pups are curled up next to me.........and students have returned! I will actually have students to talk with! Granted, most of the conversations will be about which courses are open, which courses should be taken, but still, students have been gone since mid-December.  I know a lot of people enjoy the quiet time when school is not in session but not me.  One day of quiet is about all I can stand! So I am overjoyed.

It has been pretty cold the past few days which is fine with me.  Tomorrow is supposed to be a bit warmer and by Friday, near 50.  It is going to be a good week - I just know it!

Saturday, January 6, 2018


Frozen is how I wish my emotions could be described.  Unfortunately, they are not.  Before I had kids, I detested those people who allowed their children to define them.  Well here I am.  After 4 weeks of having my youngest son and my middle daughter here, I am alone once again. I've had 4 weeks of having someone to talk to, having someone to eat with, having someone to just sit with.......and I am feeling damn lonely right now. I'll get over it. Probably by tomorrow I'll be used to the quiet again. And as the dogs are all barking their fool heads off over nothing, I use the word 'quiet' loosely. 

I really hate the feeling of saying goodbye. Before you feel too sorry for me, I could see 1 of my kids within about 20 minutes, 2 of them within an hour.  But my house, except for the dogs, is so quiet.  I've read about how time flies by so quickly and it is true.  It really does feel like yesterday when all 5 of my babies were just, well, babies.  When I was their whole world, when they needed me.  And now I'm what? A safe haven? Someone to hug them? Someone to ask them if they would check the wood stove?

The truth is, my kids - even those who are still in school - are perfectly able to take care of themselves. They are perfectly capable of reaching out to me - or not - for help, for a shoulder to cry on, or just to talk.  This is how it is supposed be. This is right. But holy crap! I miss them.

So what do I do? I cuddle my puppies, I get fat by baking and baking and baking, I take solace in the fact that I can still provide some guidance to students at work, and I take advantage of any opportunity to interact with other young adults who are away from their families and may be also feeling the same type of homesickness that I feel.

I became one of those women who allowed her children to define herself. And I am so proud of that.

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

It's Cookie Day!

It is my cookie day for the Virtual Cookie Exchange!

When Carol (Just Let Me Quiltmentioned she was going to do the Virtual Cookie Exchange again this year, I knew right off what cookie recipe I was going to share.  I’ve made these cinnamon crescents for probably close to 30 years. They are excellent coffee- or tea-dunking cookies. They take a little bit more time to make but trust me, they are worth it!

There really isn’t a story behind these cookies nor is there any great history or ancestral tie to the recipe – it was just a recipe I found, tried, and kept. I can remember getting the recipe from Yankee Magazine back when it was a smaller, Readers Digest-sized magazine. I always loved Yankee Magazine – I can remember that my grandparents always had it. I supposed because my uncle lived in Massachusetts.  There has always been something kind of mystical about New England for me. I really enjoyed reading the stories, the recipes, the ‘house for sale’ section, but mostly, I love reading the little advertisements.  There were (is) a plethora of jewelry, pottery, and New England-y things to purchase and I just loved dreaming about how cool it would be to visit Maine. Something I’ve had the fortune of doing several times since then.

Anyway – that’s what brought me to finding this recipe in the Yankee Magazine.  This may be my most favorite cookie. It is sweet without being too sweet and just a subtle taste of cinnamon.  I hope you love this cookie as much as I do.

Cinnamon Crescents

1 pkg dry yeast
1/4 cup warm water
3 cups      flour
2 1/2 Tbsp sugar
1 cup butter melted
2 eggs lightly beaten

filling: 1/2 cup white sugar, 1 Tbsp cinnamon, ground nuts - I use about 1/4 cup of finely chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350
I used a pastry guide instead of a pie pan

  1. In a large bowl, sprinkle yeast on the warm water and stir just to dissolve;
  2. Add flour, sugar, and the slightly cooled melted butter, and stir;
  3. Add eggs and stir until well-blended;
  4. Cover bowl tightly and refrigerate for at least 3 hours - I refrigerate mine overnight; but can be kept refrigerated for up to 3 days;
  5. Divide pastry into 6 or 8 parts
  6. Sprinkle some filling (not the nuts) into a pie pan;
  7. Roll out one part of the pastry and press into the pie pan. It should pressed out to cover the entire bottom of the pie pan.  You can also use a pastry cloth and roll the dough into a circle.
  8. Sprinkle with filling and nuts;
  9. Cut down into wedges and roll crescent style;
  10. Let rest for about 15 minutes; and then bake on an ungreased cookie sheet for 12 - 13 minutes.
I hope you enjoy these cookies and the recipes from all the other bloggers.

If you need some new baking ideas, visit these blogs:
December 5 

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Winter then fall

Anyone who knows me knows that I love fall.  I love the colors of autumn, I love the cooler temperatures - fall is perfect for me as it is for a lot of people.  Yesterday we had snow. Not much snow  - just enough that you could see it falling.  This isn't early for snow - I remember several years ago, I think it was 2010 or 11, that on October 12th, we had enough snow that it covered the ground.  But yesterday the air smelled like snow - that styrofoamy scent that reminds me of the little church my uncle would put in the front yard of his funeral home/house every Christmas, but also of snow in general.  Yesterday was clearly winter.  This morning was chilly and I had to let the car warm up a bit before my daughter and I set off for campus.  But it was sunny and happy outside!  By late afternoon, it was warm enough that I unzipped my mid-weight coat.

So today was a special treat - I'm just simple like that.  I am choosing to be happy in hopes that it rubs off on someone else.  Maybe it will have a snowball effect - kind of like that old shampoo commercial - I'm nice to someone, and they are nice to someone and so on and so on and so on.  Maybe if we all did that, if we all looked beyond ourselves, maybe we could have an impact on this crazy old world because nothing else seems to be working.

Decide to have a happy day and share it with someone else.

Monday, October 23, 2017

Monday morning

Mondays have a bad reputation and to be honest when there is a chill in the air, I find it hard to crawl out from under the covers to start the day.  But I don't mind Mondays - in fact, I kind of like them. I'm not the most disciplined person in the world and having to get up and go somewhere works for me. I think if today was forecast to be rainy and cool, I would be a little less enthused to get up and at 'em. 

But it is 6 am, I've been up for an hour and a half, the chicken is waiting to be let out of her coop, the cats are waiting for 2nd breakfast, the goats are waiting for something - I don't know what - and the ducks are waiting for their morning snack of dog food.

It is going to be a beautiful, happy day!

“A little child…a shining star…a stable rude…the door ajar. Yet in that place, so crude, forlorn, The hope of all the world was born.” ...