Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year!

May your year be filled with peace, joy and love.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

A Wild Christmas in the Peterson Household

This Christmas season, we are alone in our house with three dogs but no human family.

Since our children couldn’t come down and we couldn’t go up, we will have Christmas with them at another time - hopefully before Valentine’s Day!

Candy and Wayne went to be with our folks this Christmas so we are caring for their two dogs, Ren and Obie.  Ren is an Australian Cattledog cross and Obie (Oberon) is a Papillon.  Ren is a mature, well-trained lady; Obie is a teenager, still learning manners but full of love, none-the-less.
Added to our only child, Peanut, they make quite a grouping.

Last night at present opening, they did very well, except for Obie wanting to eat the discarded wrapping paper.  

This afternoon, the weather outside is frightful.  It’s +9º with a windchill of only -9º.  But because the snow is re-drifting from a different direction than yesterday, Norm is not going out to plow until tomorrow.  So he’s inside, working on spoons and doing some measuring - my Christmas present from him is to have the opening between the living room and studio finally trimmed.  

When the previous owners remodeled, they knocked a hole in the wall, put a frame around it and left it just like that.  No trim, no “prettiness” – just an ugly gaposis between the frame and the wall so that you can see into the original innards of the wall.  Norm has been promising to fix it since we bought the place in 2004, but NOW is the time!  I am so excited about it .... since it’s right when you walk from the kitchen to the living room, it catches your eye and it a blot on the horizon!

I’m baking a Cornish Game Hen for our Christmas dinner and the wild kids are parked all over the house.  Ren is on her bed, Obie is on the recliner and Peanut is in her bed, close to the heater.  It’s really a hot time in the old town tonight!

It’s a beautiful, snowy, quiet Christmas Day - you have a beautiful day!

 Sleepy Ren

 Bone chewing Obie

 Comfort, warmth searching Peanut

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas

Norm and I would like to wish all of our blog friends a very Merry Christmas and a wonderfully happy New Year.

I am not going to post our Christmas letter so if anyone is seriously interested, please email me and I'll send you a PDF copy.

Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Oh, Shucky-Darn!

I was all inspired and all ready to see the eclipse last night.  Did you see it?  This is something pretty exciting!  A full moon on Solstice, PLUS an eclipse.  I’m sure that you have heard of the rarity of this happening.  And *I* was going to be one of those who saw this momentous event!

However, our sweet Minnesota weather canceled that plan!  We had snow ... yes, dear readers, more snow!  I’m not sure how much we got — could have been close to six inches by the time it quit.  But the strong east and south east wind made big drifts, again!  It started snowing about 8:00 am and snowed heavily all day, going down to less heavy by nightfall.  

The skies, though ... cloudy and overcast.  And fog in the air.  We had warm weather (about 25º) all day and into the night which made the fog heavier and the overcast skies more overcast.

I could “see” the moon ... well, at least see the results of a bright full moon.  There were shadows and the snow and the skies were very bright.  But no actual moon to be seen.  Sigh ......

At midnight, I looked again ... still no stars or moon, just the bright sky and bright snow.  At 3:30, I could “see” the eclipse ... well, actually, I could see dark clouds where the moon was supposed to be and the snow and skies were darker ... not totally, there were still light shadows, but no actual moon or “non-moon” to see.  No beautiful red moon like they said we could see.  Sigh ......

Oh, well.  At least I knew it was there and I tried.

The snow was beautiful yesterday, at least for those of us who didn’t have to go out in it or drive in it.  I took a lot of pictures to try to capture the heaviness of the snow and I think this one does it well.

So, on another beautiful day today, I hope you have a beautiful day.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Poor Honeysuckle!

We have an Oriental Honeysuckle that has climbed onto a dead tree and is a delight to the eyes.

Last night the wind whipped it off of the tree and it is now laying on the ground.

Hopefully we can put it back on the "tree" this spring  - maybe we'll have to make a new post for it to climb on!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Window Art

Yes, we DID get that blizzard that they “promised” ... and was it a doozy!

“They” - the weathermen and women - said that it would hit after midnight, but we only had about half an inch of snow and little blowing by six in the morning.  But by eight, it was blowing and snowing and we had no visibility, no internet service (I have satellite), lousy radio and questionable TV (also satellite) receptions.  The only good reception is the weather radio which keeps saying, in it’s computer-generated voice “winds up to sixty miles an hour, snow up to twelve inches, temperature dropping to zero by nightfall, chill factors into the minus thirties.”  Bo-o-o-oring! So I am listening to my MP3 player and have “Huckleberry Finn” ready to listen to when I go back up to the looms.

Norm is outside playing in the snow.  He’s forging out to the barn to make sure everyone has water and feed; he’s broomed snow off satellite dishes and knocked icicles off the roof; he is also going out to his shop to play around with wood, doing something.

I talked to Candy (at least I have phone reception) and Wayne was bundling up to go out to HIS shop to do something important, as well. 

These men cannot, will not, stay inside no matter how bad the weather is; they are too anxious to go out and fight the elements.  Candy and I are content to stay inside and do house-wifely things or crafts.

I have some baked beans to go into the oven.  For the FIRST TIME in my adult life, I have gotten dried beans cooked and SOFT.  I have never be able to get them soft before.  I followed Candy’s directions exactly and it worked (thanks, Candy).  So I have a ham shank cooked and now will put everything together for Auntie Pete’s recipe of baked beans for supper tonight.

Norm has ten spoons done for a neighbor - he ordered them for Christmas presents for his family and friends.  Shawn will collect them next week.

A former employee of the Farm came by yesterday with a quarter of beef - she and her husband raise organic, grass-fed beef, although they grain the beefs at the end to help give a more tender cut.  They were delivering to customers all day yesterday.  The plan HAD been to continue deliveries today but they said they got in contact with today’s customers and managed to fit them in yesterday. 

A few days ago, Norm drove the Farm’s tractor home to do some welding on the snowblower, so it’s all ready to use when the snow stops.  He needs to not only dig us out of the drifts but get over to the Farm and dig THEM out, too. 

Thanks to his ‘new’ Jeep, he will be able to get there easier than last year.  He purchased that from our friend Jody (thanks, Jo-Jo); it had belonged to her mother and we got it in October.

I have most of my weaving gifts done for Christmas.  Just a few more inches on one, then they all go down to the sewing machine for stitching - you need to sew up the ends so they don’t unravel - then washing, hemming, pressing and wrapping.  Whew!  I WILL have them done on time this year!

I love winter storms, if I don’t have to be out in them.  I like to sit nice and warm and watch the snow blow.  I feel sorry for others who have to be out in it, but enjoy the weather, myself. 

I have some pretty window art to show you — the way the snow lays on the windows is one of the prettiest things about the storms.

As soon as I get Internet service, I will post this, but it might be after the storm is over.  But it’s a beautiful day today and I hope you have a beautiful day.

Thursday, December 09, 2010

One of Winter's Best Moments

Winter in Minnesota can get rather dreary with all the cold, the snow, the overcast skies and the "blueness" of your feelings.

But Winter in Minnesota can also give us some wonderful moments.  And when that moment lasts a whole day, it's a true delight to the eyes.

Sunshine!  Sparkly snow!  Frost!  

And we had one of those days just the other day.  I spent most of the morning going from window to window, enjoying the beautiful views.  Admittedly I did not go outside much.  That much frost meant cold, cold, cold, and I'm a wimp when it comes to cold.  I'll stay inside, thank you very much, and enjoy it from a heated environment.

But here are some pictures (and I did go outside to take most of them!) for you to enjoy!





But even though we had this great day, today it is overcast, windy and not even very nice.  There are about twelve Goldfinches hunkering around the feeders, trying to get enough food before something nasty hits.  

It's a beautiful day, nonetheless, especially when I think back two days to the very beautiful frosty day.  You have a beautiful day.

Friday, December 03, 2010

Will we or won't we?

Tomorrow is "Stitches in Time."  Candy and I have been in deep discussions about holding it or not.  We have contacted everyone who are regulars to tell them that we will not.  However, we told some of them to check with us tomorrow to see if we do have it.

The trouble is:  the weather (of course!) .... we have a winter warning and it's expected that we can get up to six inches of snow.  Now, that's not much in the general idea, but that makes our roads pretty difficult to travel and if the snow continues into the morning hours, we don't want anyone (including ourselves) on the road tomorrow.

But it's beautiful right now - and Donna?  It's coming almost sideways!!

The windmill is showing that the wind is coming from the east .. which is not a good sign ... east and south east winds usually mean MORE weather than not!

But the snow is beautiful if you don't have to go out.  Which I, myself, do not, today.  You have a beautiful day!

Monday, November 29, 2010

What a wonderfully full week!

We’ve been busy this past week.

It all started with last Saturday when we went up to the Cities.  We stopped at Jody’s to drop off my rug loom.  I had torn it apart, marking the pieces so that we can put them together again easily, then Norm and I put it in the van.  Jody also got the chair that went with the loom.  Norm and I had discussed this and I found that one stool I had worked better for “Harriet Dare” so the chair (which fit the rug loom better) went as well.

The studio is much more open now, and when I do more organizing, it will be even MORE open.

We then went to Joy’s and spent some time, then the whole family followed us to Old Country Buffet where we met Jill for her birthday dinner and spent over two hours visiting and catching up.  Eric did not join us as he was fighting a cold, so stayed home.

Sunday morning we helped Joy get ready for the in-law Thanksgiving - where twenty-five were expected.  Norm and I headed out to Jill’s to spend the day; I have gotten a new phone with a navigator in it so used that to drive right to Jill’s townhouse without any human directions!  (How neat is that?)

We watched the Viking / Packer game while there - it’s strange to be with Eric and Jill during those games as we are used to Ken’s and Joy’s reactions; they are Vikings fans while J&E are Packer fans.  I sit in the middle - I like both teams and cheer for either team.                        

Our weather was tricky last weekend.  It started freezing rain while we were heading home to Joy’s on Saturday night; the freeze continued during the night (I nearly went head-over-teakettle while taking the dogs out during the night) so we borrowed Ken’s 4x4 Ford Ranger to go to Jill’s.  But it dried off and warmed off for the trip home Sunday evening so there was no worry getting back to Joy’s.

Monday morning was relaxing; the girls did school work and I did some knitting and reading; Norm worked on a spoon he needs to finish; Joy did some house cleaning and computer work.  Joy and Norm went to Papa Murphy’s to collect pizzas, then Joy drove me to the airport to collect sister-in-law Donna for her week here in the “Nort Country” ... she has never been north of Oklahoma.  

Even though Donna and Charles had been married just three months, they had been friends, then a couple for several years.  This was the first Thanksgiving without Charles so she asked to come up here to be taken care of rather than spend time taking care of her children.  She “ran away” for a week.

I had a winter coat for Donna, as her “winter” coat would only work for our spring / fall seasons.  However the weather was very mild on Monday so she didn’t have to wear the heavy one that day. After we picked her up, we drove to Joy’s for a late pizza lunch and then headed home, getting home in time for a late-ish supper, visiting and bed.

Tuesday, Candy came over to see Donna and we made pies!  Donna has a recipe for pie crusts that calls for oil, not lard or crisco or butter.  Also, she brought Oklahoma pecans for the pecan pies.  I have never made one nor have had one for Thanksgiving or Christmas ... so she made two and I will have to make them again, they were such a hit!

Tuesday night I received a text message (I’m getting hooked on texting!) from Joy, saying they were on the way; they arrived about 12:30 that night.  I was so received because the roads were supposed to be nasty the next day!

The plan on Wednesday was that Donna, Candy and I would go wandering around the area to show Donna places.  And also spend some time with Candy at her house.  I debated going over to Candy’s, but it was still dry underfoot when we left - although Ken stood in the window complaining “Where’s the rain?  They SAID it would be here by 9:00!”  At 9:30, while we were on the way to Candy’s, it started (only half an hour late, Ken!) and we had freezing rain on the way over.  By the time we headed home (no wandering today!), the windshield was iced over and Wayne had to scrap it for us.

So instead of wandering, Wednesday was full of getting ready for Thanksgiving, playing cards and visiting and watching the freezing rain fall.  Ashley has been asking me to teach her how to play the harp, so I got my beginning books out, explained how to play and let her go.  It was pleasant to hear harp music while we worked in the house.

Thursday, of course, was the big “T” day.  Candy, Wayne, Cookie and Binni had their turkey at their house while we seven had it here.  Then Candy and gang came over for pie and cards; by late afternoon the frozen roads had cleared enough for safe travel.

Friday, then, was our wandering day.  Donna has loved Laura Ingalls Wilder and the “Little House” books since childhood. We took her to Walnut Grove; the museum was closed, unfortunately, but the store was open.  We wandered through the store - I found a box of “old” (1961 copy write) patterns for many of the crafts we all do and Donna got a fridge magnet.  We then drove past the homestead site (road closed due to weather) and saw the monument that was put up close by.  Then to Westbrook and also to a few lakes in the area so that she could see ice on the lakes.

After dropping Candy off, we came home; everyone started packing as they were heading home that night.  Joy was going to take Donna to the airport on Saturday morning and they wanted to make sure that she got there in time.

Supper that night was leftover turkey and trimmings and pie.  (Oh! Did we have a lot of pies?)  While visiting for the last few hours, Bitty asked Donna what she learned in her educational trip up north.  

Donna learned that: we put fences up to keep snow out (her first and foremost laugh and learning); snow does not always come down from the skies - it sometimes (mostly, here) comes sideways; you plan all events and trips by the weather and listen carefully to what is expected; you wear a hat - she never even HAS a stocking cap!  Also, you dress in layers and LIVE in layers; most of the houses she saw (most of the older ones) are two or three (or four) stories high - there ARE one story houses but they are usually newer ones.  Ice is DANGEROUS to walk and/ or drive on; she knew that, as Oklahoma sometimes has ice, but not for more than a few days - definitely NOT for a week or more.  Let’s see what else?  The entry ways have a million coats!  Actually, we only have four or five coats, each, but when we add everyone else’s coats.  And (as Joy mentioned), when they come down to snowmobile, there are four sets of snowsuits, coats, boots, hats, mittens and scarves.  In Minnesota, as well as most Northern states, you need at least three different coats / jackets.  Fall and Spring lightweight ones, Summer ones and Winter heavy ones.  Also, Donna learned from stories, not from actual experiences, that the snow can go over the snow fences and can become crusty so that you can walk OVER fences if you want.

I think Donna was happy to get back to warm “normal” winters.  We had loaned her a heavy winter jacket, a stocking cap and gloves.  She rode in the car with a blanket on her legs, even though we have good heaters in the cars.  She was comfortable, she said, in the house - we boosted up the heat a bit for her, but we still keep the rooms in the high sixties most of the day.

So, now Donna is home and we are quiet here.  Having seven people in the house might seem crowded but it was not - but it did tend to get noisy sometimes, especially during card games.  Having eleven people for pie and cards just added to the fun.

The weather stayed around the mid thirties, but Donna was shocked one morning to wake up to +2º.  Sunday it was in the low forties but today the temperature has dropped below freezing, the rain has turned to snow.  And, yes, it’s going sideways!  But it’s a beautiful day, none the less.  You have a beautiful day.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Weaving things

I have not posted about the Stitches in Time day that we had a few weekends ago.  It was a fantastic time and we had a lot of people there, for once.  Usually Candy and I are the only ones there with a pop-in from regular, Betty, for an hour in the morning.

Things were different this time.
Candy, Cookie and Betty's mom, Sophie, with Binni behind the computer
First of all, Norm and I went south-west one Sunday to assist a weaver-wanna-be in getting a “new” rug loom set up and to show her a few things that she needed to know to get started.  I invited her - Brenda - to join us at Stitches and she showed up.  I took
“Cherry,” my 15" loom to show her what a loom looks like all warped up and to show her exactly how you weave.

Joy and the girls came down for the weekend, so Joy came with me - it was her first time there; even though we’ve invited her often, she has never been able to come on Stitches weekend before.  

Niece Cookie also joined us and brought daughter Binni.  I had not told Bitty and Bubba about her being there, so when Norm brought the girls (after their late breakfast and chores), there was excitement abounding.  They stayed for a bit, then Norm took all of them home to be able to “hang out” (they are too old to “play,” I am told) and not have to be quiet.

Brenda came and we talked weaving for awhile.  Betty came and brought her mother, who wanted to re-learn how to knit.  Lois came; she is a semi-regular.  She had started a baby dress and had forgotten how to finish it, so Joy promised she would do it for Lois.  Brenda decided that she wanted to learn how to knit - she had a “learn-to-knit” kit.

Lois is working as well - you can see Cherry in the foreground.

Joy and Betty
Table runner and matching placemats 

 Finished table runner
Joy took over the knitting instructions, which was great for both Candy and I.  We can both knit but Joy can not only KNIT, she understands!  Cookie was doing some knitting, too.  She is learning to make socks, toe up, with the magic loop that I have never figured out.  So Candy and Joy took over her instructions.

 Joy teaching Brenda to knit while Lois looks on
Brenda, Lois and Betty
Joy's table cloth - handspun, dyed and knit
Candy helped Betty figure out a pattern on a crochet project she has.  She was given a partially finished doily and the thread for it, so between Joy and Candy, they got her started on that.  Joy not only crochets, as well as knits, she UNDERSTANDS crochet!  (I don’t think Joy is mine ... she must be adopted!)

I sat and wove — and nearly finished the table runner that I needed to get done.  With help from the gals, I decided not only how long to make it but who to give it to.

So now I have 2 projects done and ready for gifting.  And have started dressing “Cherry” for the next project.  I have figured out what I want for “Harriet Dare” but haven’t started yet.

One major project, semi-non weaving was deciding to give my rug loom away.  I have not woven a rug for over a year and decided the space was more important than the loom.  I offered it to Candy but she can’t find space.  I offered it to Joy, but the same ... no space. So Jody decided to take it - it is torn down and sitting in the van waiting to go up to the Cities this weekend.  I am now in the process of rearranging the studio to give me more useable space and more area to actually walk in, not weave around in.

I am also cleaning up other parts of the house, preparing for my sister-in-law, Donna.  She asked if she could come up for Thanksgiving; we are picking her up at the airport on Monday and we will have part of a week to visit.  

When we go up to the Cities, it will be to visit Jody and drop off the loom, stay with Joy and family and also be with Jill for awhile. She and Eric arrived HOME last week and are unpacking in their new place.  Eric plans on going up to his parents’ cabin to go hunting this weekend so we won’t see him this time, but there will be others.  

Joy plans on coming down for Thanksgiving but Jill can’t, as she starts her new job on Monday so can’t get enough time off to travel for a long weekend.  But there is Christmas (and Valentine’s Day and Easter, and my birthday and Norm’s birthday and all other times to visit) now that she is HOME.

It’s a cold, overcast day, but beautiful, none-the-less.  You have a beautiful day and a wonderful weekend.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Happy Birthday, Jill!

Besides Veterans Day, today is also Jill's birthday!  I won't say how old, because most girls are sensitive to their ages until they hit around 62, when they get excited about retiring and getting Social Security.  And then, in their 80s, they get proud of being "so old" and aren't ashamed to admit how old they are!

On this auspicious day,  Jill is traveling with Eric and Remy and heading home.  After too many years away from easy visiting from me, they are moving back to Minnesota and will live in the Cities.

This picture was taken when we were in Australia, where Jill was born.  She is balancing on a see-saw.  Notice the hat ... over there, the sun was so hot that no child was allowed outside in the summer without a hat to protect their heads.  When we first moved there and didn't realize it, I got scolded by total strangers until I got into the habit of putting hats on the girls' heads.

Happy Birthday, baby!  May you continue to balance well in your upcoming years as a wonderful daughter.  We love you!

Veterans Day

On Veterans Day, we honor all who have served for our country.  Beginning with the Revolutionary War (and even before) up to today, there are thousands and thousands who have willingly put their lives on the line to protect the rest of us and to protect our freedoms.

Myself, personally, I have to thank my father (World War II and the Korean War), my brother-in-law, Darrell (Korean War), my brother-in-law, Wayne (Vietnamese War) and my husband (Vietnamese War).

Fortunately, they all finished their service records with good health.  None of them were wounded or killed while serving.

But then there is my brother, Charles.  He was in the Vietnamese War and, unlike the rest of my family, was actually IN Vietnam when he served.  I posted earlier (on his obituary) Charles' service record.  But on this day, I feel it should be mentioned again.

 During his military career Charles was awarded the Soldier's Medal, the Bronze Star, the Air Medal, the Combat Infantryman's Badge, was  twice awarded the Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry with a bronze star, and received the Meritorious Service Medal.

Although Charles returned from Vietnam with no wounds, he suffered the rest of his life from the result of being there.  Mental suffering, as many veterans had, and then physical.  The Army took responsibility for many physical problems that resulted from Agent Orange.  Charles was one who had many of those problems.  He developed diabetes and heart disease from the chemicals. 

In fact, although Charles died many years after his service in that war, I feel that he is truly a victim of the Vietnamese War.  He is a hero who gave his life for his country that he loved so well.

Thank you to all who served; my prayers for those families who suffered losses because of their services.  A special thank you to Charles who willingly and devotedly gave his heart and soul for his county.

God bless America!

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

I have done my duty

Voting day is a fun day for us ... we go have breakfast at the Shady Drive Inn, then go vote.

It's fantastic to walk in and have our township "judge" say - "Hi, Connie ... here's where you sign!"

We had more people at the time than normal ... I was voter number 61!  I did not take a picture but if you can imagine 6 tables about 8 feet in length and a wooden booth.  I had a choice of using the booth or sitting at a table.  There were 1 or 2 people at nearly every table, making their marks on the ballot.  Then I walked to the machine that sucks in your ballot and talked to the gal in charge of the machine while I got my pretty red sticker.

What a difference than most of you have or will experience!  I have been to city voting places and have experienced long lines, bringing out my driver's license to identify myself, standing in long lines to go behind a booth to vote, either by machine or with a pen or pencil.  I will take small town voting any day!

Have YOU voted yet?  ARE you going to vote?  Do your duty to God and Country!

It's a beautiful fall day - you have a beautiful day.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

How low can you go?

This past week we had the lowest barometric pressure on record. The weather changed from pleasant 50s and 60s (and even higher) to a sudden drop with winds and rain and even snow up in the northern areas. We had traces of snow but no “measurable” snow. We ended up with over 2" of rain before the wind hit. High, high winds knocked over trees and electrical poles all over the state, as well.

Norm read that about 31 states had much the same weather as we did, so I might not be telling you much.

I did hear that this low pressure was lower than the one that caused the Edmund Fitzgerald to sink on November 10, 1975 in Lake

Have you heard the song written and sung by Gordon Lightfoot?

We were living in Australia at the time of this tragedy and had not heard of it (we heard very little American news down under). When we came back in 1977, this song was popular and I really enjoyed it but did not realize it wasn’t something that happened in the far past. It wasn’t until 1989 that I found out about when and what happened.

I was working in an office in the Cities where everyone else was a born and bred Minnesotan. On November 10th, the boss walked in and asked “Where were you today?” .. People started telling their stories and I said “WHAT?” (I think that was the beginning of my down-fall at that office - I found another job soon after because of the obvious dis-like of my superior - but that’s another story) So I was told about the Edmund Fitzgerald and realized that it had happened recently enough that it had become a living legend.

Anyway, back to weather, where I started this story - our weather was worse than that famous storm and people were warned to stay off the water! And we had no ships or boats sinking this time!

The weather has switched, again (sigh). It’s now sunny and back up to the upper 50s, whereas the past several days it has struggled to reach 40º. We have sun, again. A nasty wind but not as strong as it has been.

I spent Thursday at a school - they have an arts and crafts day there and have many people come in to teach their skills. There was a clown, a balloon artist, dancers, marital arts people, etc. I taught beginning weaving and the kids really enjoyed themselves. We were able to watch the sun begin to peek out while we wove. I hope I have inspired some little ones to continue with weaving in their futures.

Yesterday I took the wedding present off Harriet Dare and have washed it and am waiting for drying before hemming. I will post pictures when I am finished.

It is a beautiful day today - you have a beautiful day.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Wistful Wednesday

On this blustery Windsday, I thought I'd follow some of the other bloggers and put up a photo from the past.

This was taken when Mom and Dad traveled to Australia to visit us (we lived there for five years).  We met them at the airport at Canberra then traveled back to Tumut, NSW.  Jill isn't visible, but she was THERE and made herself very obvious.  This was before Jill was born.

Today is a very blustery day and we had our first snow, even though there wasn't much except in corners.  It promises to be a nicer weather day tomorrow but it is a beautiful day today, nonetheless.  You have a beautiful day.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Thank you, Mom!

Candy and I went to Mitchell, SD, to meet our mom for a few days of being together for fun and frolic.  It started out that Joy and the girls and I were going to go to Rapid City to spend some time with Mom and Dad but that didn’t work out.  So then I was going to drive there by myself.  

While talking to Mom, we decided to meet half way and have Candy join us.  So Mom paid for the motel and we paid for the meals.  We got the better deal!!

There were plans for all of us to visit several different places.  

Candy wanted to go to Cabela’s for some supplies; she went early the first morning while Mom and I ate breakfast.   

Mom wanted to go to the cheese factory; we called and found out that her desired yellow cheese curds were not available so we went to a specialty shop and we all bought cheese as well as spices and some baking items.

I wanted to go to the doll museum that has been advertized for years.  Every time we passed Mitchell, going to or from Rapid City, I asked Norm to let us stop so that I could see the museum (I collect dolls in a minor way - Norm won’t let me get all the ones I want).  He always had an excuse to not stop.  This spring as we were coming back from Charles’ funeral, I wanted to take the grandgirls there but no one could find the time to allow us to go.  So THIS TIME I WAS GOING TO GO!

However the clouds covered the skies and the gods wept!  When we called to ask for times, no one answered.  We asked a clerk in a store and found that the museum had been closed for a year and a half!!!!

We were going to go swimming - the pool was not warm enough for our cold / old bones, any of us.  We were going to sit in the hot tub - the heater was broken!  We did end up, all three of us (one at a time, of course) soaking in the bathtub with as hot a water as we could stand!
Mom did get something done she wanted to do: one of her good Eastern Star friends lives in the area and she joined us for supper the first night (or is it “dinner”??).  We ended up sitting for over three hours visiting with Chris!

Plus, the fact that we did not do much meant we spent more time just sitting and visiting.  Candy and I had knitting and Mom just talked with empty hands.

It was a great time - better weather than promised - we had temps in the mid seventies every day!  Spending time with Mom was fantastic.

I’d like to say a little bit about Mom.  She has been driving since she was about twenty-five fifteen (sorry, Mom) and she still does a pretty good job.  She is ninety years old and has quite a bit of energy, is very alert and - even though she complains about memory loss - pretty good at that, as well.

It was a beautiful time with two beautiful women; you have a beautiful day!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Thank you, Deanna

In February, I purchased a 24" floor loom from my friend Deanna. I warped up her first project while at Joy’s, with the girls helping me to get it set up. It took me a while to get it done - I didn’t really LIKE the project I was doing, which made me not want to work on it.

But I finally got it done - two towels that I gave a young friend for a wedding present. 


I then started another project for another young friend for her wedding. Sister Candy is right - we need to stock up on our items so that a sudden wedding doesn’t through us into panic modes (at least ME).


Deanna has had this loom for many years. When we lived at Historic Murphy’s Landing, I tested it out, as she offered to sell it to me. I did not have the room or the money at that time.


But I sold a larger loom about a year ago, so had the money and selling the big loom gave me room in the studio.

I have named her “Harriet Dare” ... don’t know where that name came from but it fits her. Old fashioned in a way, modern in others.

Now, I have a little bit to talk about in the case of weaving. My fans who are not weavers might like to avert their eyes at this point. The weavers, this is an idea you might like to use.

I have started using “floating” selvedges a few years ago. These are, if you don’t know, the selvedge edges put through the reed but not through heddles. Hence, “floating” ... you can raise or lower them to catch as needed. Once you get used to them, there’s a great rhythm to it. You lift or lower the selvage as you slide the shuttle through the warp. That way you don’t have to worry about getting the selvedge correct while threading the heddles, which is always been my problem.

A while ago I read that some weavers hang their floating selvedges separately with weights rather than have them rolled onto the back beam with the rest of the warp. I tried this with the towels that I made. I think that’s one of the reasons I didn’t like the towels, as I didn’t like that kind of floating selvedge. I went back to attaching them to the back beam, as normal, for these place mats and I like that much better.

Anyway, back to the basics (non-weavers may look this way again). I have the towels done and given away. The mother of the bride approached me last week and told me that Dawn (the bride) had used the towels as table runners (another way of using them) and told me where they were located in her house. I always love to hear how my gifts are being used.

And if I keep in the rhythm for the weaving amount each day, I will have these next ones done before the next wedding.

However, I will not be able to weave for the next three days as Candy and I are meeting Mom in Mitchell, SD. She wanted me to come out but we decided that we would meet in the middle and have Candy join us. Mitchell is about half-way for each of us, and is a nice “little” town to play around in. I will take pictures of what we do and post that some time next week.

Until then, it’s a beautiful day today - didn’t get down to freezing (just almost) and it will be sunny and warmish today. A brilliant fall day, again. You have a beautiful day.

Monday, October 11, 2010

How many people are IN you?

I have talked about Patience and Harley - very dear friends of ours and thought I would show you some of their characters that we have "met" and loved in the past (and still love).

These are some of the twenty to thirty some characters in their heads -especially Patience.  And to be truthful, Patience and Harley are not their real names - but a lot of people don't know the real ones.  Patience and Harley are the characters that are the most often "out" of their brains.

If you think I am making fun of them, I am.  But I can't make as much fun of them as they do, themselves.  For example, before the Big Island Rendezvous, Patience was looking for Icky Ethel's costume and was in the closet calling "Ethel, where ARE you?"  Harley walked in and said, "Honey, I think you've LOST it!"  Yes, I think she has, if she's talking to one of her personalities as a separate being.

So, without further ado, may I interest you in some pretty snazzy people?

Wild Bill Hickok

Calamity Jane


Harley's Mom, Molly and "Britta Gunderson"

Jennie Sheehan and Colonel Sheehan

Mrs. Sheehan was the wife of a Civil War hero but her grave was unmarked. 
Patience did research and found the grave (next to her husband) and put a marker there.
We had a beautiful ceremony with many friends joining in.

I can NEVER remember who Harley is when in uniform ... sorry, Harley!
He is either a general, colonel, captain, major, sergeant or private; each one is a different personality with a different name.

Icky Ethel

Miss Sarah with Bubba when Bubba was about five

Bubba wanted one of the Hissing Cockroaches that Ethel usually has.  
Miss Sarah, Ethel and many other characters sell them to children, with parental approval.

Under our fly.  She is a licensed cannoneer

I simply can NOT remember who these two are!

"Gay" photographer / marshal
  • PhotobucketMargarita before the fight (she and a friend stage a fight and she gets killed)
These are just a few of their characters .... I am sort-of their unofficial photographer but have not gotten all of the characters that *I* have met on film and have not met nearly half of them, even though I known them for about ten years. 

A brief list of others that they portray - Libby and George Custer (I KNOW I have pictures of them somewhere), a salon gal who is based on history and is Wild Bill's mistress (in Patience's little world).  A woman (name escapes me, wonder why?) who runs an early western "dude" ranch in Montana.  A gambler who plays cards (that's Patience ... he's the side-kick who protects her and her winnings).

I am sorry, kids, if I missed out on the proper names ... if YOU can't keep track of who you are, how do you expect ME to?

I hope the rest of you enjoyed meeting my friends ... wish you could meet them in person.  

OH!  And a rare (RARE indeed) picture of the two of them in "civilian" clothes.


I'm not sure, but I think that this is the second of three (or four?) larger trailers

I've had a beautiful day going down memory lane with my friends - you have a beautiful day.