Friday, January 23, 2015


After finally getting my holiday decorations safely stored in the Christmas closet, I decided to reward myself for the effort I'd expended. One of my favorite things to do is browse thrift shops and though I truly needed nothing, I spent time yesterday wandering the many aisles of the Antique Mall close to me and then took a walk through the thrift shop across the road from the Mall. I hadn't thought to take along my phone or watch so I wasn't paying attention to the time. I was probably there for a few hours and I must have walked miles! No doubt, I needed the exercise, but every aisle held all sorts of treasures - most of which stayed at the shop. The ones I couldn't resist came home with me.  Recently I'd begun to let go of things I wasn't using, so by bringing my small treasures home, I wasn't actually adding to a stockpile. As I will tell my spouse, I was being rather selective in my choices. Much of what I found will be used as display pieces for my next home show. (That's as good an excuse as any, right?) From time to time I remind my spouse of how lucky he is that I'm so very "low maintenance". I can honestly say I'm happier with a few well-chosen treasures from the thrift store or antique mall, than I would be with expensive things from an upscale department store. I love the items I found yesterday and will soon be busy finding just the right spots for them here in my "shop". You can view the photo of my stash on the sidebar to the right. Don't you love that little red chair? I think I have the perfect handmade doll for it, or maybe I'll make another doll. Hmmm, more projects.     

Wednesday, January 21, 2015


Today I finally finished putting away ALL the Christmas and holiday decorations. Yes, I procrastinated. I admit it. I've been having some relaxing days since Christmas and haven't yet gotten back into routines. I might explain that my routines, as such, haven't actually been the same since my spouse retired. I will just say it's been a huge adjustment for us both and we've not completely settled into this new way of life. Anyway, we left trees up and lights glowing long after Christmas because we were enjoying them, but all good things must eventually come to an end, so we began to "undecorate" and tuck everything into our little Christmas closet. It's filled to the brim again, but everything is tidy and all boxes are labeled.

Why did it take me so long to get everything sorted and put back into storage? I had so much more to do this year than in previous years. I had handcrafted items and lots of garlands and small trees displayed here in my front room, which doubled as my "shop" during home shows. All of that had to be packed away, along with table coverings and collections of vintage toys and bears which graced the area beneath my primitive tree. For the last two weeks I've been dealing with a small amount each day but I finally realized I needed to spend more time packing up my items if I was ever going to see the end of the task. Yesterday and today were the appointed days and I worked at it until it was done. Whew! It surely is more fun to pull things out and display them, than it is to put them back into storage.

So . . . what's next? I had a fleeting thought of hosting a home show before Valentine's Day so I could make lots of primitive hearts to sell. When I checked the calendar to see how much time I'd have before an early February show, I decided to aim for the Spring and Easter season instead. I'll have to overlook Valentine's Day this year.  I'm trying to find incentive to sew again. Rummaging through patterns and decorating magazines is helping in that endeavor. A call this morning from the local veterinarian's office jarred me into reality and I now have dozens of catnip toys in the works. The vet knows I have rescued cats and she consented to selling my handmade cat toys in her clinic, to help with the costs of spaying, neutering, and vaccinating the cats.  The clinic is completely out of catnip toys! So there's some incentive to get me started.  After I finish the cat toy order, I'll decide which Spring and Easter items I'll make and how to display them.

Maybe my routines will take care of themselves.  

Tuesday, January 6, 2015


Where to begin? How did I let Christmas and New Year's Day slip past me? I suppose it was because I hosted three separate family Christmas gatherings and was allowing myself some down-time afterward. Time goes by so quickly for me these days that I've barely finished one week's tasks before another week is upon me. I could scarcely believe the date of my last post - December 14, 2014. I was so sure I'd posted on or around Christmas Day. As I recall though, our internet connection was lost for a few days around that time. I'll just say I hope all of you had a very Merry Christmas. We're still enjoying our decorations and outdoor lights. We'd decided to take them down on Jan. 6th but it's turned very cold and is now snowing, so we may leave them up for awhile yet. That would suit me fine. I love Christmas lights and decorations and am always sad when it's time to store them away for another year.  

The New Year brought a new interest for my spouse and me. I purchased a set of Downton Abbey DVDs and gave them to Spouse for Christmas. We're now hooked on that series, though I admit to not having understood all the hoopla about it during the last couple of years.  Now I do understand and can't wait until chores and dinner are done in the evening so we can settle into a night of viewing. That, and putting together puzzles seem to be our new pastimes. Spouse stokes the fire and turns down the lights, then we grab our warm coverlets and stay cozy as we watch the shows. I can't think of a better way to spend a winter evening.

I don't make New Year's resolutions anymore - haven't for some time. My personal feeling is that doing so sets us up for failure, then we feel guilty. Life hands us more than enough guilt and feelings of self-doubt, so no more resolutions for me, but rather a striving to do better each day, and a resolve to take one day at a time. We have a "clean slate" so let's take this opportunity to start new projects, let go of the past, and move forward. I wish all of you a New Year filled with joy, peace, and cozy winter evenings.     

Sunday, December 14, 2014


This time every year I start feeling the pressure of getting everything done on time. It's very much like preparing a big meal for a family gathering. Everything needs to be coordinated so each aspect of the meal can be presented at the right time and temperature.

I still have a little bit of decorating to finish, though my Christmas trees are up and (mostly) decorated. I decided to forego putting up my whole collection of lighted ceramic houses. I'm planning to choose 3 or 4 that hold special meanings, then let the rest go. It won't be easy but I truly need to purge my decorations and keep only the things I love and use.

Perhaps I need to take some lessons from my daughter. She has downsized her decorating a bit this year by choosing a smaller tree - one that is pre-lit. Daughter has worked in retail for large departments stores and loved helping with the displays of seasonal decorations. She learned how to wrap strands of lights around each individual branch on a tree, and did that for her own Christmas trees for many years. She decided to not take the time to do that this year. It generally takes two days to complete the lights, and her tree always looks gorgeous, but she says she could be doing other things in those two days. She has three ceramic lighted houses displayed on a side table, a few yummy smelling holiday candles, and her pretty RED pre-lit tree. Though I love all things vintage and like having "stuff" around me at holiday time, I do love the simplicity of my daughter's décor. 

This year, I put my tall primitive tree in my gathering room, which doubles as my "shop" when I host home shows. I held back some of my own handmade ornaments from the home shows and decorated the prim tree with those. I also put old toys under and around the tree and I'm having fun playing with the displays. My red tabletop vintage tree is in my dining room with red and white potholder dresses and old play utensils displayed on it.  I took the primitive brown tree from the gathering room and set it in the guest room. My "shop" remains set up for Christmas and I can't wait for my nieces and nephews to come and see all the old toys and decorations. I'm planning to hide little treats around the tree so they can find them and be surprised.
One of my favorite treasures this year is a Little Chef toy stove very much like the one I had as a child. I felt very lucky to find it at a vintage/antique shop. It's under my tree along with Raggedy Ann and Andy, and a sock monkey I made for my mother for her Christmas birthday some years ago. Next to the tree, my old childhood panda bear sits in a vintage suitcase along with handmade wool bears, an old book (The Three Christmas Eves), a few small patchwork stars and a larger star made from a time-worn quilt. All in all, I like how things have turned out, though I had no real plan.
If I can complete gift wrapping this weekend and put the final touches on decorating, I'll be ready to plan the Christmas Day meal and bake some of my favorite Christmas cookies. I'll post some recipes soon.
I added a few photos to the sidebar . . .       

Thursday, December 4, 2014


It just occurred to me it's been exactly one week since Thanksgiving. Why do the days and weeks leading up to the winter holidays seem to pass so quickly? I wish these very feelings of anticipation and intention could last for about six weeks. Would I be ready for Christmas then? I doubt it. I've been so wrapped up in home show preparations that I've scarcely begun making lists for Christmas. Every year I express a desire to simplify decorations and spending, yet those things seem to spiral out of control. I have so many decorations I love that I can't bear to leave them packed away when they could be adorning my Christmas trees or fireplace mantle. Shopping for family gifts is enjoyable to me and though I do search for great sales, I often find a few extra things I think someone will enjoy, so my "budget", such that it is, goes out the window.  

My cats received early Christmas gifts again this year. They're not as grand as last year's cat trees, but they're being enjoyed just as much. About two weeks ago, I stopped at a festive store called "The Christmas Tree Shop". Among all the lights and ornaments, I found some cat gifts. I bought my furry ones a bunch of new scratching toys and three square boxes in which they can hide and play. Actually, the canvas boxes were for storing office supplies and such, but they looked like the perfect play areas for my cats. I think I'll go back and purchase a few more tomorrow. Right now, the cats have to stand in line to play with them. I should have thought of that. I've yet to take photos of them playing in their boxes, because when I go out to the cat rooms, I keep forgetting my camera. I do have some recent cat pictures though, and will post them on my sidebar. I don't know when BlogSpot is going to fix whatever is wrong with its photo posting option. I've contacted the administrators numerous times and have yet to receive one reply. Perhaps I need to be grateful the sidebar posting option is still available.

I'm off to browse through some cookie recipes and make a list of gift ideas for family members. Time is marching onward.

Thursday, November 27, 2014


"Christmas in the Country" home show went very well. Not only was it fun, but I reconnected with some friends I hadn't seen for years. The show was profitable as well, but profit is never my main goal. Seeing old friends and receiving positive comments about the handmade items I offered, was worth more than any sales I made, though sales were very nice, to be sure. I'm already starting to think about hosting a Spring show. I've been sorting some supplies and fabrics and realize I have lots of bunny patterns I've never used. I plan to start my Spring sewing in January. 

Can you believe we've arrived at the end of November? Today is Thanksgiving and my spouse and I have been invited to our daughter's house for dinner. Then on Friday, extended family will be coming here for dinner, .so I don't really get out of cooking, it's just postponed for a day. I can't believe I'm not stressing over getting everything done. I'll cook the turkey and dressing, and fix a layered salad, while relatives fill in with vegetable dishes and desserts. It should be a nice day for visiting with family. 

I intended to leave all my pumpkins, gourds, and straw bales displayed on my front porch through Thanksgiving, but the freezing temperatures ruined them last week. My spouse took the pumpkins and gourds to the far corner of our property and deposited them. If things work out as they have the past two years, we'll have "volunteers" come next Fall. Most of this year's gourds and a few small pumpkins came from that little corner and it was fun searching for them. After the end of this week, we move on to Christmas. It's about this time of the year I begin to ponder all the things my family and I have experienced - some good things and some not so good - and I give thanks for my spouse, my family, my home, and my country. None is perfect, but all are loved and appreciated. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving and remember to count your blessings.       

Thursday, November 20, 2014


One would think it was December here in southern Ohio. We have about five inches of snow on the ground, but I'm not complaining. I know many states have much more than that. I love the snow, love to look at it and feel it crunch under my feet, but it's a little bit early for this much of it. That's all.

Well, the weeks have sped past me and this Saturday is my CHRISTMAS IN THE COUNTRY home show. I'm almost ready, though I admit to missing my self-imposed deadline of having all items completed by Wednesday - which was yesterday. As so often happens, there were many interruptions to my crafting routines and once I'd been in pause mode, it was hard to get started again. Still, my displays are ready and I've made Blonde Brownies, Rocky Road Fudge, White Chocolate Pecan Fudge, and Peanut Butter Fudge - and some dog treats, which are baking as I type - for the bake sale area of my show. I have a few kinds of cookies on my list yet to make and I need to add some finishing touches on wool cats I've sewn. Anything else will have to wait for another show. I'm done, well, nearly done. I do still have clean-up to do and that's the only part I dislike about sewing and baking. I make such a mess! If only there was a cleaning fairy. Tomorrow will be my cleaning day and Saturday I'll host the show here at Liberty Homestead - 8593 Hemple Rd. - Germantown, Ohio 45327. The hours are from 10am to 5pm for any of you in my little neck of the woods. 

I'll post a few more photos on my sideline. I think I'm pretty much finished tweaking the displays. I'm just being picky now when I move things around, but my goal is to present and eye-pleasing assortment of handmade goods for sale. I guess I'll find out on Saturday if I succeeded. Have a good weekend everyone, and please wish me luck!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014


As usual, I'm wondering where my time has gone.  It's already been three weeks since my fall show. During the week I was waiting for people to come and browse, I took time off from my sewing, and that was a mistake, but I didn't want fabric and supplies all over the place if I had company. You see, I'm a very messy crafter. I can't keep my areas neat and tidy and still be creative. I feel the need to strew jars of old buttons and rusty bells, fabric, patterns, scissors, needles, and thread wherever I land for the evening.  I generally cut out patterns and sew items during the day so I can stuff them and add finishing touches and do the hand sewing while I relax and watch a little TV with my spouse at night. At any rate, this week finds me playing "catch up" and I've been burning the midnight oil. It's a good thing I'm such a night owl!  

In reality, I probably already have enough to sell at my Christmas show, but one never knows. There are still some things on my list that I've not had time to make, so I'm striving to get those items done before next Wednesday which is my self-imposed time limit for making items to sell.  That means I have exactly one week to finish the projects I've either started or simply dreamt of making. If I continue to be as productive as I've been the last few days, I'll do just fine. I just finished 6 large ginger men and 6 snowmen last night. My ultimate goal is to enjoy sewing and not feel pressured or stressed by it. That being said, I need to get busy here. I think I'll make some primitive stockings tonight. I have my pattern out and a stack of fabric ready to go.

I posted a few new photos on the sidebar. This is what I have done so far, along with a smaller area for Thanksgiving pumpkins, which you've already seen. Keep in mind I arrange and re-arrange the room every time I add some items. I have no doubt it will all be ready by November 22nd.    

Saturday, November 1, 2014


As Winnie the Pooh would say, it's a blustery day today. There's a chill in the air and the wind is trying to blow away anything that isn't tied down. The sun has yet to appear and the sky is gray and not at all friendly-looking. Gee, I was just getting used to Fall weather, though last week we had a couple days where the temperatures reached the low 80's. That's not Fall, that's summer. Fall has always been my  favorite time of the year, but to my dismay, it also seems to be the shortest season. 

Today I'd planned to visit a small craft cabin not far from here but I've decided to postpone that excursion and stay home and tucked inside - except for trips to the barn to tend cats.  I'll also keep working on projects for my "Christmas in the Country" Home Show.  I'm a bit behind my self-imposed schedule and have been dreading to pull out Christmas trees and lighted garlands. All of those things are wedged into my quaint little Christmas closet and though I tried to make sure I could get to everything I might need if the occasion arose, I didn't do a good job of that, so I'll need to pull most everything out in order to access the items I want. That wasn't good planning on my part, but when the Christmas decorations were put away last January,  I wasn't sure I'd be hosting any home shows this year.

This is the earliest I've ever decorated for Christmas, but I won't be putting up trees in the rest of the house, just here, in my gathering room, which doubles as my computer/office when I'm not hosting shows.  For the Harvest Gathering, I had my spouse hide the computer and printer under this desk. I covered the desk with a pretty Fall tablecloth and displayed baked goods on it.  No one was the wiser. I'm learning when hosting a home show, I need to work around the furniture I have and use it to my advantage. I don't have any place to store it, so it becomes part of my set-up.

Today would be a good day to tackle the job of unloading the Christmas closet and deciding which trees I want to use. I'll probably find some table coverings and other things which might also be used for display. I'm having a difficult time, though, budgeting the hours in my days.  I really WANT to sew, but I NEED to get this room decorated and show-ready. I truly NEED to do some laundry and housework, but I WANT to play at decorating and sewing. Though I brought in plastic totes that had been stored in the barn since we moved here, I've yet to organize the fabric and craft supplies I found inside them, so that's another thing I need to do.  I guess all I can realistically do, is work at each thing a little at a time, and keep at it until all is accomplished. That is my cue to get busy and stop procrastinating. I'll post some photos as I go along. There are three whole weeks until the next home show, and if I my use time wisely, that should be enough.

As always, of late, I'll post photos on the sidebar. The most recent ones will be at the top. I'll be happy when the administrators fix the glitch that prevents me from posting photos here. Thanks for your patience.   

Sunday, October 26, 2014


Well, I've managed to fritter away a whole week since my home show. Honestly, I sometimes don't know how time gets away from me. This week I'd planned to put up Christmas trees and start decorating here my gathering room in preparation for the November show.  I hesitated to do that because I thought more people were coming to shop this week. They hadn't exactly promised to come, but seemed very interested and asked if they might bring some friends along. I wanted things to look as nice as they had last Saturday, so I didn't take anything down. I waited all week, but no one came. When will I ever learn to do what is right for me and not worry so much about what others might think or do? I didn't sew a single thing this week because I didn't want to get all my fabrics and notions out and make a big mess if I had someone coming to the house. I know I should go ahead and do whatever I want or need to do, but it's often easier said than done.  

The week wasn't completely a lost cause though. I did catch up on loads and loads of laundry and I browsed many of my crafting idea books and patterns. In fact, they're still stacked on my coffee table in the family room. I've made lists of things I hope to accomplish before the next home show and I already have some projects ready, except for the pricing. My daughter has again volunteered to make treats for a baked goods table and I have fliers printed and ready to be delivered in a couple weeks.  I guess that's a good start. I'm just not as far along as I'd hoped to be at this point. 

I have a lot of work ahead of me in the next few weeks so I best be getting to it. The upstairs sewing room needs to be straightened before I make an even bigger mess, and I need to take inventory of fabric and supplies before I jump in and begin again. Ok, deep breathe here . . . I vow to work on that room tomorrow, take inventory, and complete at least 5 things. I'm actually anxious to get some holiday items sewn and I'll post some photos as I get things done. Wish me luck!

(Apparently, I still cannot upload photos to the text of this blog post so I'll add something to the sidebar.)

Thursday, October 23, 2014


The Harvest Gathering Home Show is now history and I'm calling it moderately successful. We didn't have crowds, but we did have a rather steady stream of one, two, or three people at time until about 4pm. I was amazed that everybody who came purchased something. I was happy with the number who attended, and with sales, though selling wasn't my primary reason for hosting the show. My reasons were: to rekindle my passion for sewing and creating, and to prove to myself that I could host a small home show and live to tell about it. I feel as if I succeeded on both counts.

Some who attended asked if I was planning to "keep this up", meaning to have Fall items displayed for awhile. Affirmative. Others wanted to know if I was going to host a Christmas show - why, yes I am! Some even asked if they could come back and bring friends to see what was available. 

As far as what sold......all sizes of fabric pumpkins went well, patchwork pillows sold, but not the Americana ones I thought would go first. I guess it wasn't the season for them, but I thought some people might decorate with a red, white, and blue theme, as I do in my sunroom. Oh well. Catnip toys sold, along with large and small wool cats, and I sold all my vintage kitchen utensils. The baked goods were a hit, and I appreciated my daughter and granddaughter taking time to bake everything. I had only a few bake goods left, but many Fall handcrafted items remain here in my gathering room.

I thought I'd be starting to put up Christmas decorations this week, but I'm waiting to see if the people who asked to return, will do that. I have some Christmas ornaments finished and am working on fabric gingerbread men right now. The list of things I want to sew is growing, but I probably won't be able to finish everything by the next show, which is November 22, from 10am to 5pm. That's ok though. It's always better to have more to do than hours in the day will allow. That makes life interesting.

New photos are posted on the sidebar. For whatever reason, I still cannot upload photos to the text of the post. The new photos are under, "Harvest Gathering Home Show Day". Thanks for viewing!     

Thursday, October 16, 2014


Wednesday was my self-imposed deadline to have all my items finished, priced, and displayed for Saturday's Home Show. I made it! Of course, there are always a few things on my "to-do" list that aren't going to get done, but over all, I feel good about what I was able to accomplish in a few weeks' time. Had I not hesitated for so long, I might have been able to make more items, but it was rather nice the other night to hear my spouse say, "Gee! You have a LOT of stuff to sell!", and yes, that was the goal - but it was good to have him recognize that I truly had been working hard at getting things done. My last items were catnip toys, which I package 3 to a bag. My goal was to make 20 sets of 3. I actually made 60 toys today and packaged them this evening, just before the stroke of midnight. How's that for working right up to the last minute? I could continue to sew for the next two days if I chose to, but at some point, I really need to clean up my messes and straighten the house. Having supplies strewn about drives me a little bit crazy. I've kept up with dishes, laundry, and cat care, but oh my, how the dust bunnies have multiplied! 

Two nights ago, I spent a lot of time rearranging here in my gathering room. I re-did some lighting and moved a few things around since I thought I had too many items just piled into baskets. I think I like how it looks now. I keep telling myself if sales are low, I'll have lots of things to use for my own Fall decorating, and that's not a bad thing. I'm being cautiously optimistic about what might happen on Saturday. Whatever comes, I've had a great time putting this together and re-visiting my sewing. I'll post the most recent photos on my sidebar. I'm still unable to upload photos to add to the text of my post.

Thank you to those of you who've posted kind comments. I'm glad to be back to blogging and I appreciate that you've not forgotten about me.

Friday, October 10, 2014


It's getting closer to the date of my Harvest Gathering Home Show and I suppose I should be feeling nervous, but I'm just excited. I'm still making things daily and enjoying it so much.  I guess the timing was finally right for getting back into sewing and crafting. I don't actually know what I was waiting for  - except that maybe I wanted the stars and moon to align themselves and offer me a "sign", but of course, that didn't happen. One day, after much angst and conversation with a trusted friend, I finally made up my mind to stop hesitating and fence-sitting, and just try to DO a home show.  I realize there might not be many people show up for my show, but one never knows for sure.  I live in the country and I didn't put an ad in the local paper. I did, however, print fliers and post cards and add messages and photos on the timelines of a number of shops in my area. Today I'm hand-delivering some fliers to those shops and putting up posters in the stores I frequent. We'll see how that goes. I just about have my gathering room set up the way I want it and yesterday, my daughter affirmed her plans for baking some wonderful Fall treats to sell at the show. However it turns out, I'm going to continue to have fun with it. I'm posting some new photos on the side bar here since for whatever reason, I am still unable to post them in the text.   

Tuesday, October 7, 2014


It's been so long between posts that I hardly know where to begin. I can scarcely believe it's been nearly a year and a half since my mother passed. I've been keeping busy though, nurturing cats, working on home projects, and sewing. Yes, I'm finally sewing again. It used to be one of my passions but it fell by the wayside when I stopped participating in art and craft shows. For a few years, I only opened my sewing machine for a bit of mending, but I decided it was time to change that.
My spouse retired recently and it's been a huge adjustment for both of us. I'm not used to having him here all the time and he's not used to being home during the day. We're learning to work around each other but I find it difficult to go about the daily chores with someone here. Why is that? I've talked to other women who feel the same way. Spouse will help with a few things if I ask, but in general, he has retired and I haven't. Many of you know how that goes. Anyway, after moping around here for the last year and a half, I realized my life was lacking direction. I had the wild idea to take the plunge and host a Harvest Gathering Home Craft Show this Fall. It can't be too difficult, right? I have a lot of experience with craft shows and I still have all my tables and display pieces, plus a few more I recently added, so setting up is the easy part.

I hesitated for the longest time, then took a deep breath and chose a date for my gathering - October 18th. I made some lists of what I wanted to make, took inventory of the fabric and supplies I had on hand, AND . . . I've been making country pumpkins, patchwork fall wreaths, wool cats, bowl fillers, and other things I hope to sell. At my daughter's urging, and with her and my spouse's support, I am transforming my former "parlor" into a temporary shop where I can display and sell my handmade items. Of course, I don't know if this will fly, but I'm not getting any younger and I will never know if I don't try. My attitude is this . . . if it doesn't go well, at least I will have tried. If it's even a small success, I will be thrilled and ready to host a Christmas show!

Here are a few things I've finished and how they are arranged so far. I keep moving things around as I complete my items and hope to have the room totally filed and ready by the middle of next week. That will leave a few extra days for cleaning up my crafting messes and making a final check on everything.  I have a list of things yet to make but if I don't get them done, I'll work on them for the next time. This will be a small show, and I have no idea how many might attend.
I've composed and printed posters and fliers to distribute to local shops and my daughter has volunteered to bake some fall goodies to sell.  Here's what I printed on the fliers:

Harvest Gathering Home Show
At Liberty Homestead
October 18, 10am to 5pm
8593 Hemple Rd.
Germantown, Ohio 45327

There will be handmade fabric pumpkins, wool cats, fall wreaths, bowl fillers, vintage accessories, crocheted rugs, catnip toys, homemade dog treats, and a Baked Goods corner with Fall goodies to take home and enjoy.

(Then I listed my phone number in case someone had questions.) 

So . . . I'm embarking on a new adventure - or am I actually re-visiting an old one? Either way, I'm happier and more content when I'm making craft messes and creating something. I'll let you know how it goes!

P.S. It seems there are still BlogSpot issues when it comes to posting photos. That's part of the reason I wasn't posting anything at all. I could not get my photos to upload so I could post them and there are new cat photos to share! I had recently been assured the issues had been addressed. The posting process stalls every time I make an attempt so I'll just try posting them on my sideline. Ah, that still works. 

Sunday, February 9, 2014


February is here already. The days and weeks since Christmas have gone by quickly and we're nearly ready to celebrate Valentine's Day. I'm SO behind the times. It seems as if I just put away Christmas decorations!
Recently, my sisters and I were able to sell our mom's house and now we're on the last leg of the journey to let go of our childhood home. We're in the process of removing the last of her possessions from it. We've made progress but still have a lot to do. It's difficult to coordinate our schedules so the three of us can be at the house together. We absolutely have to get this done, no more procrastinating. We need closure, though I'm sure on our very last day in the house, we'll be walking down memory lane.
Looking after our  mom was one long journey from dementia and strokes, to Alzheimer's, with many hospital and rehab stops along the way. We can't say for certain when it all began. In retrospect, we realize the signs were there many years ago, but we didn't recognize them at such. The sad fact was, our mother hadn't been our "Mom" for a long time but we attributed her memory loss to aging. Don't we all forget things now and then? The signs were not just memory loss, but the inability to balance her checkbook, use her VCR or CD player, and even to use the phone. Her usual organization of bills and bank statements became a mess of constantly shuffled papers and she lost track of which medications she'd taken and when she'd taken them. I'm sure my sisters lost count of the times they rushed over to her house because they couldn't reach her, only to find she simply hadn't replaced the phone securely on the receiver.
A few years ago, Mom was (thankfully) forced to give up driving, which upset her immensely, but her safety and the safety of others were at stake. She asked my sister to sell her car, but when it was sold, Mom had a meltdown and accused us of selling it without her knowledge. That was just the tip of the iceberg. There was so much frustration and emotional pain during the last two decades - for Mom and for us - that we're truly ready to have all of this behind us so we can move on with our lives. Mom certainly didn't ask for Alzheimer's, nor did we, but it's what we were given and I hope our mother would approve of how we've dealt with everything.

After this final step, I intend to get back to sewing projects, blogging, and spending more time with my cats. I've missed all of those things but at times, I had no incentive to do any of them. When I think back to all the things my family and I have dealt with these past three years, it's mind-boggling. I realize other families sometimes deal with worse things, but for us, all of this took place in such a short span of time and dealing with them took all our time and energy - Glenn's mom's illnesses, surgeries, and passing, the move here, the selling of Glenn's and my former home (and bidding a last farewell to my backyard cabin), Glenn's Dad's illnesses, surgeries, and passing, the selling of Glenn's family home, Mom's strokes, hospitalizations, entries into rehab,  moving her from her home of 60 years to a senior facility  close to me, her many health complications, her last terrible fall, and subsequent passing - all of these things added up to one giant roller coaster ride. So now we're at the end of that ride. The roller coaster is slowing and on February 28th, the closing date on Mom's house, it will come to a stop. The journey has been bittersweet. We haven't actually had time to be sad or melancholy about letting go of the family homes since there was so much paper work and many things to do in order to get them ready for sale. Right now, it seems more of a relief to have them sold, than something about which to be sad. In some ways, that's sad in itself. 
P.S. As of last night, we appear to have a problem. As luck would have it, we seem to have reached an impasse with the prospective buyers of Mom's house. My sister and I think we are being more than fair, very generous in fact, but the buyers want more and more from us. I think we're going to stand firm and if that means the deal falls through, we'll try again. This is very frustrating. We only recently learned that our realtor is also representing the buyers. Isn't that conflict of interest? He's going on vacation tomorrow and won't return until a few days before the closing. What timing. 

Wednesday, December 25, 2013


I  hope all of you found some joy on this Christmas Day. Glenn and I spent a very nice day with our daughter and her family. Once home, we started a fire in the Buck stove, warmed some leftovers for supper, and with only the tree lights and mantel lights burning, watched Polar Express, my most favorite Christmas movie. The ambiance was wonderful. Tonight is surely better than last night. It was not the Christmas Eve I'd planned, but I'll save that story for another time.
We connected with some friends and family this evening via emails, phone calls, and texts. Don't we just love technology? Without it we wouldn't be able to converse with those who are separated from us by distance. It's a quiet evening and we're winding down from all the preparations, decorations, and expectations of this season. I hope all of you are finding peace, joy, and comfort tonight. I wish you a very Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 24, 2013


Time seems to slip away from me these days. Here it is Christmas Eve "already" and though I'm not feeling particularly rushed at the moment, I'd like this day to last for about a week so I could savor the feelings, the nostalgia, and the joy of this season.
Decorating my home for Christmas took much longer than I'd anticipated and I don't think the enthusiasm was there as it should have been, but I'm fine with what I was able to accomplish. As I uncovered each box of Christmas treasures I'd collected or made through the years, the joy and enthusiasm came back to me. At times I think I have WAY too many decorations, but I do love this season and enjoy making my home look and feel cozy and inviting - at least that's my intention. In any case, decorating and arranging Christmas treasures was how I chose to have fun.
Yesterday my grandkids came over for a cookie-baking session and game night. What joy they add to my life! Grandson is 19 and attends Ohio State University and Granddaughter is 14 (going on 30) and has blossomed into quite a young lady. I'm so glad they still want to visit and bake cookies with Nana. I so wish I'd had the opportunity to do that with one of my grandmothers. Both of them were older when I was born and they didn't interact much with my siblings or me. It was a different time then. My grandkids don't know what it's like to not have grandparents who love to do things with them. I can't change my childhood, but I can surely continue to make memories with my grandkids. I hope they'll keep those memories in their hearts and pass them down to their grandkids one day.

Happy cookie-baking and gift-wrapping! Savor this day.