Sunday, November 30, 2008

Those In-Between Days

While most of you spend the days after Thanksgiving recuperating from an overload of turkey-induced tryptophan or napping after getting up in the wee hours of Black Friday morning to go shopping...I'm cooking, cleaning and getting ready for Thanksgiving. When everyone else is gearing down...I'm gearing up! It has been our tradition the last several years to celebrate our Thanksgiving dinner together on the Sunday after Thanksgiving. That way Jodi, Jeremy and the kids can spend the holiday with the York side of the family without any hassles and Jessica can work and give someone else the day off to be with family. Then we can relax and enjoy our day together.
Since I love the colors of fall and the harvest themes of Thanksgiving, I don't like to decorate for Christmas before we have our big dinner on Sunday. But I do make a few concessions to that. I like to put the outside lights up the day after Thanksgiving and put up the big Christmas tree in the basement. The reason for putting that tree up is that after our Thanksgiving dinner, we all decorate ornaments for this year and go down and hang them on the tree.
Jodi and the kids came over on Friday to help with these lighting chores. So one more item that I included this year was a snowman magnet set that I got to put on the refrigerator. The grand kids had a ball putting it up (and taking it down, and putting it up silly, and taking it down and doing it all again...and again.).
But tomorrow morning I need to kick into high gear and decorate the rest of the house. I'm hosting the Batty Babes on Tuesday night and want the house all decked out for Christmas by then. After this week, the rest of the holiday season should be a breeze!

Saturday, November 22, 2008


This is the time of year when it really starts to sink in how blessed we are. It is a time when we also, hopefully, begin to look for ways to help others. This year I encourage you to help your local food as big a way as you can. There is more need this year than there has been in a very long time.

Here are a couple of other really cool ways to help. This first one costs you nothing and helps very much. Can't beat that! If you're easily addicted to computer games (like I am), then click on the picture or go to It's an on-line vocabulary quiz. They give you a word (where do they get some of these???) and 4 definitions to choose from. If you guess it right, 20 grains of rice are donated to the UN World Food Program. If you get it wrong, they give you the right definition and then a few questions later they ask you that one again. So it's, fun, educational, helpful. I love a "win - win - win"...don't you? There is a warning on the website, though. It says, "This game may make you smarter. It may improve your speaking, writing, thinking, grades, job performance...." If you think 20 grains of rice aren't worth the effort, it adds up. I can't seem to quit playing until I win at least 1,000 grains. If you click on the "totals" tab on the top of the game page, they will show you how much rice has been donated since this started in October of 2007. Are you ready for this? So far...51,690,666,050 grains have been donated by the sponsors who show up on the bottom of the game as you play. Go ahead -- have some fun, and be helpful!

Help end world hunger

And here's another cool one. This one isn't free...but it costs so little it's almost like being free. I got this one off of Jodi's web page. If you came across a shoe sale where you could get 2 pairs for $ would be all over it, right? you can! Just click on the picture below. If that doesn't work, go to and help them get 50,000 pairs of shoes in 50 days.

The 50,000 Pairs in 50 Days Challenge
If you know of more fun and easy ways to help in what other people have set up to give aid and comfort to those who really know what "need" means, please let me know. I'm on it and I'd love to pass it along. Thank you for participating!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Fun Fall Weekend #6

For the past 6 years it has been a somewhat new "tradition" to take a weekend in the fall and get away together as a family. We have stayed in state parks and mountain rental cabins. This is the first year we have gone to a place where we've been before. We went to F. D. Roosevelt State Park in Pine Mountain, Georgia. The reason we went back there is because of the things there are to do nearby. When we were there in 2005, we went to the Wild Animal Safari park. Emery was just a baby and Savannah was not quite 3. We all liked the park and knew the kids would really enjoy it at the ages they are now. And they did. Emery, especially, loved feeding the animals from the bus. He didn't mind holding the food in his hand and letting all kinds of yukky tongues lick it from him. We all enjoyed the giraffes putting their heads right into the bus windows to come for the food. Jodi had to finally pull the hood up on Emery's sweatshirt because the giraffes were drooling all over him! Savannah just wanted to watch from a little safer spot inside the bus.

When we were there 3 years ago, we noticed that we missed the opening of the Fantasy of Lights at nearby Callaway Gardens by just a few days. So we went a week or so later this year and included that. It was wonderful. They had just opened a few days before we went and since it's early and we were there on a Monday night, there were no crowds and the weather was cool but not terrible. It put us in the mood for Christmas which is, after all, just around the corner. The next day, on our way home, we went to Callaway one more time and went to the butterfly house.

When we weren't out enjoying these activities, we were at "home" in our 3-bedroom cabin. We built a fire and roasted hot dogs and made s'mores. There was no TV (oh, my!) but luckily Jeremy (who was going into withdrawal) had his projector in the car and when he hooked it up to his laptop was able to show movies on the wall. "The Artist" -- formerly known as "Savannah" -- recorded it all in drawings. If you give her a blank piece of paper and a pen, you have a happy child. And she's very good at remembering and recording what she has seen.

And each year I draw someones name and they win a Christmas quilt. This year's winner was Emery! I posted a picture of this year's quilt on September 21st, when I finished it...but here it is again.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Gotta Get a Gun

Do you know what a "Gund" is? Here's one on the left. They are adorable, cuddly little stuffed animals. "Gund" is the brand name and their marketing slogan is, "Gotta Get a Gund". Cute.

Every once in a while I look at my neighbor across the street and paraphrase that slogan to myself, "Gotta get a gun". Most of those times have to do with his motorcycle. He is a man about our age, not a kid. But his motorcycle has no muffler!!! So many times while we're sitting on the front porch enjoying nature sounds or just mostly peace and quiet, he will decide to get the bike out and go for a "little" ride. And I do mean "little". He'll rev the bike, rev the bike, rev the bike...then go down the road. We can literally hear him when he makes the turn on Salem Road -- a mile away! Then in a couple of minutes, he's back. He'll rev the bike, rev the bike, rev the bike and then put it away. Just making sure it's still loud enough, I guess. This is an almost every day occurrence. Sometimes more than once a day. Sometimes early in the morning. Sometimes in the afternoon, when the grand kids are napping if they happen to be here. As I sit on my front porch, I level my eyes over the top of my book as he goes slowly -- but loudly -- past the house. And I think to myself, "Gotta get a gun".

Don't get me wrong. I'm not a violent person. I've never shot anything in my life (I'm no Sarah Palin, after all)...but there's a first time for everything.

Then earlier this week, as dusk was setting in, Jerry noticed something across the street. "Mike's got his Christmas lights up", he said. It's not even the middle of November yet! What ever happened to Thanksgiving? He gets earlier every year. And he's one of those fellows who will be out there on Christmas morning taking them all down. I don't get it. But it's a pet peeve of mine when people rush the season like this. It not only takes the joy out of it because you're sick of Christmas by the time it gets here, but it also makes me feel pressured -- like I should have my tree up, all my gifts wrapped, and be sitting here sipping egg nog already! Not only all that...but his decorations are UGLY. The bushes in front of his porch are all completely covered in red lights (the big bulbs). It looks like his bushes are bleeding. More like hemorrhaging. All except for the one on the far left. It is covered in blue lights. My thinking is that there are no more red light bulbs to be had in the county.
Yep....Gotta get a gun. Maybe I'll ask Santa.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

New Kid on the Blog

On the right side of my blog page, under the green box, is a white box. In the top of that box are two links to other web sites. The first is McCall's and the second is Sweet Home Quilt Co. If you've clicked on Sweet Home before, it's just said it was a "work in progress"...just like me. Well, I'm here today to say, "Ta Da!!" Click on it now and you can see all kinds of good stuff. Everything from pictures of the sweet house that is Sweet Home and all the wonderful displays inside to a calendar, a newsletter, info on classes and workshops and you can even shop on line for patterns, kits, and fabrics...including all the latest. If you can't find what you need or want, just drop Melisa a line. Now no matter where you are, you can enjoy Sweet Home Quilt Co. as much as we do who live around here. She's also going to be blogging on there. So be sure to check back often. Also check back because it will be evolving. She says it still isn't exactly what she wants it to be, so she'll be tweaking it for while yet. Check it out!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Go Vote

Whatever your political views...get out and vote (if you're not among the many who already have). And I hope you're praying for the voting today and the outcome of this election. This very large mantis on my back door is!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Falling Back

Unless you live in Hawaii or Arizona, you turned your clocks back this weekend. We're saying goodbye to Daylight Savings Time until next spring. Time to hibernate.
Everyone gets all excited about getting an "extra hour" of sleep. Well, if you get up as many times as I do during the night, that sounds great. But yesterday as we were going around the house resetting all the clocks, this occurred to me:
We have 19 clocks to reset. That includes the computer, the coffee maker, my watch, the car and truck, radios, and two TVs as well as actual time pieces...but still. If you figure it takes an average of 3 minutes to reset each clock, that's a total of 57 minutes. That means we actually gained only 3 minutes! Hope you enjoyed your "extra time" and spent it wisely.
Just wondering...why do two people who are both retired need to know what time it is anyway???

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Happy (Belated) Halloween!

Yes, I know it was two days ago. But I was waiting for Jodi to post pictures of the kids in their Halloween costumes. And besides...I've been in pain for two days! (Sic 'em, Dawgs!)

Savannah had seen The Wizard of Oz for the first time last fall and she loved it. So for Christmas, I got her ruby red slippers and a basket with Toto. She's enjoyed playing with them ever since. Then one day a couple of months ago, I saw some blue and white checked material in my sewing closet and I asked her if she wanted to be Dorothy for Halloween. Well, of course she did! Then Jodi found a Dorothy wig on line and she was good to go. Also last year, my mom had gotten Emery some Batman pajamas...complete with a cape. They were too big on him, but this year they worked just fine for a Halloween costume. Again, Jodi just had to find a Batman mask and he was all set.

Since I don't have children to dress up any more (except for making a dress for Savannah), I "dressed up" my living room with a few new pieces this year. I have recently discovered an artist by the name of Bethany Lowe and I like her stuff. I like the old fashioned look of this little Trick or Treat girl...and the gnarly feel of "Mr. Gourdo". One more "treat" I gave myself was a spider web valance for the top of the window along side the fireplace. Jessica looked at it and asked, " Elvira living here now?" (I don't know where she gets that smart mouth of hers...must be from her dad.) But I like it! That way I can leave all the rest of the cobwebs in place and call them decorations, too.

Hope you had fun on your Halloween!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

The Making of a Fan

Except for enjoying the successes of my friend Mellie's son, Sam, as he finishes his high school football career and goes on to benefit from his full scholarship at Mississippi State...I don't care anything in the world about football. In high school all I cared about was going to the game for social reasons -- and the dance afterward. I don't care about college ball, pro ball or any of the bowl games. I don't eat chili, I don't tailgate -- I simply don't get it. And I'm fine with that.

One of the fierce local rivalries around here is between the University of Georgia Bulldogs and the Yellow Jackets of Georgia Tech. Jodi and Jeremy are big UGA fans and they go to home games whenever they can. And when the "Dawgs" are playing an away game, you can bet they're hosting a party or watching the game with friends at someone else's house. Today, for instance. The grand kids are playing in the other room as I write because mom and dad are cheering their hearts out with their friends. I think they are playing Florida today. The "Jackets" are on TV today also, but I couldn't tell you who they are playing. As I said...I just don't care.

But I'm starting to rethink that now. The weather has been great here this week and I've been enjoying sitting on the front porch in the afternoon sun and reading. Yesterday as I was doing that, I was sitting with my legs stretched out on the porch swing. As I gently swayed and read, my feet were crossed at the ankles. Then -- all of a sudden -- as I slowly rolled my feet together, there was this INTENSE PAIN! I had trapped a yellow jacket wasp between my feet and he, in a snit, decided to inject me with copious amounts of his venom! A simple "ouch" on his part would have brought out an instant and heart felt apology on my part. Why did he overreact like that? I put ice on it and took some ibuprofen, but that horrible and excruciating pain lasted for over 15 hours. I couldn't do anything the rest of the day but lay with my foot up and an ice bag in place. I couldn't sleep, because as soon as my foot left the ice, the pain would instantly wake me. Today I refused to give into the pain, so I'm going about my normal routine. But the intense pain has been replaced with a constant sore ache. Jerry's been stung before, and so he's sympathetic. He asked, "Does it feel like a deep puncture wound?" Well, yes, as a matter of fact...that describes it very well.
So from now on when I hear that UGA and Tech are playing against each other, and word on the street has it that the Bulldogs are going to obliterate the Yellow Jackets, I have only one thing to say: "Go, Dawgs! Sic 'em!"