Thank You Friends

Honestly, I have met the nicest people through blogging.

Originally I thought this would just entail checking out everybody's neat decorating. That's not what it has turned out to be though.

You have shown me about a million crafts that I admire but will never do. :) (So not crafty!)

You've shared awesome recipes which I do try pretty often.

You've given me fantastic ideas about saving money while taking care of my family.

You make me remember how important it is to be kind to others and smile!

You've shown me amazing goodies from Thrift stores.

You've given me advice on life...and decorating.

The point is that I'm really grateful for my blogging buddies. Each blog uniquely represents the person who puts his or her heart and soul into it. I appreciate that.

Now because I have been negligent I need to share these meme's that I have received lately.

Debra at Glory Feathers and LeAnn at Simply Dandy cottage tagged me awhile back to share seven or eight things about myself. Here goes:

1. I'm a control freak. Yes, it's a burden.

2. I drink WAY too much coffee. Come by that honestly because everyone in my family does.

3. I love to laugh! I embarass my kids at the movies laughing out loud.

4. I've had my BFF Rochelle since 5th grade.

5. I'm 45. Lord, how did that happen?

6. I clean all the time but I'm not germ phobic.

7. Totally not athletic but love to walk with my friend Carolyn.

8. Say I too much!!!

Can I Make a Confession?

Yes, I need to confess.

I love Christmas.

I always have and always will.

Often times though, when it reaches this point in the season the urge for some normal starts to over take me. Does this happen to you?

The thought of a new year with new opportunities overwhelms me. I love the chance to think of things new. New decorating, new goals, new chance to break bad habits, new chance to be better to the people I love, the list goes on and on.

I do realize that any of these things can happen any day but a NEW YEAR makes it so much better. Do you start to feel this way?

I guess it comes back to remembering to take it one day at a time, enjoy the present, and count my blessings.

Christmas Magic

Christmas waves a magic wand over this world, and behold, everything is softer and more beautiful. ~Norman Vincent Peale

Never worry about the size of your Christmas tree. In the eyes of children, they are all 30 feet tall. ~Larry Wilde, The Merry Book of Christmas

He who has not Christmas in his heart will never find it under a tree. ~Roy L. Smith

May Peace be your gift at Christmas and your blessing all year through! ~Author Unknown

Let's Go for a Drive

One of our family traditions has always been to load up and drive around town. Go with us!!
Have you seen the moon the last few nights? Wow!!

Each year the family at this house wraps all the trees. It's beautiful!

Can you tell there are probably millions of lights at this house? There were also lots and lots of cars driving by. The lights went on and off like they were synchronized with music.

This is a shopping center near us. It's always gorgeous. Workmen start wrapping trees at the end of October.

Must have some reindeer and a sleigh.

Hi Frosty!!

Happy Birthday Jesus!

Back home again!! Let's go have some hot chocolate. :)

A Sweet Santa Story

I can't take any credit for came to me in an e-mail and I loved it.


I remember my first Christmas adventure with Grandma. I was just a kid. I remember tearing across town on my bike to visit her. On the way, my big sister dropped the bomb: "There is no Santa Claus," she jeered. "Even dummies know that!"

My Grandma was not the gushy kind, never had been. I fled to her that day because I knew she would be straight with me. I knew Grandma always told the truth, and I knew that the truth always went down a whole lot easier when swallowed with one of her "world-famous" cinnamon buns. I knew they were world-famous, because Grandma said so. It had to be true.

Grandma was home, and the buns were still warm. Between bites, I told her everything. She was ready for me. "No Santa Claus?" she snorted .... "Ridiculous! Don't believe it! That rumor has been going around for years, and it makes me mad, plain mad!! Now, put on your coat, and let's go."

"Go? Go where, Grandma?" I asked. I hadn't even finished my second world-famous cinnamon bun.

"Where" turned out to be Kerby's General Store, the one store in town that had a little bit of just about everything. As we walked through its doors, Grandma handed me ten dollars. That was a bundle in those days. "Take this money," she said, "and buy something for someone who needs it. I'll wait for you in the car." Then she turned and walked out of Kerby's.

I was only eight years old. I'd often gone shopping with my mother, but never had I shopped for anything all by myself. The store seemed big and crowded, full of people scrambling to finish their Christmas shopping. For a few moments I just stood there, confused, clutching that ten-dollar bill, wondering what to buy, and who on earth to buy it for. I thought of everybody I knew: my family, my friends, my neighbors, the kids at school, the people who went to my church.

I was just about thought out, when I suddenly thought of Bobby Decker. He was a kid with bad breath and messy hair, and he sat right behind me in Mrs. Pollock's grade-two class. Bobby Decker didn't have a coat. I knew that because he never went out to recess during the winter. His mother always wrote a note telling the teacher that he had a cough, but all we kids knew that Bobby Decker didn't have a cough; he didn't have a good coat. I fingered the ten-dollar bill with growing excitement. I would buy Bobby Decker a coat! I settled on a red corduroy one that had a hood to it. It looked real warm, and he would like that.

"Is this a Christmas present for someone?" the lady behind the counter asked kindly, as I laid my ten dollars down."Yes, ma'am," I replied shyly. "It's for Bobby."

The nice lady smiled at me, as I told her about how Bobby really needed a good winter coat. I didn't get any change, but she put the coat in a bag, smiled again, and wished me a Merry Christmas.

That evening, Grandma helped me wrap the coat (a little tag fell out of the coat, and Grandma tucked it in her Bible) in Christmas paper and ribbons and wrote, "To Bobby, From Santa Claus" on it. Grandma said that Santa always insisted on secrecy. Then she drove me over to Bobby Decker's house, explaining as we went that I was now and forever officially, one of Santa's helpers.

Grandma parked down the street from Bobby's house, and she and I crept noiselessly and hid in the bushes by his front walk. Then Grandma gave me a nudge. "All right, Santa Claus," she whispered, "get going." I took a deep breath, dashed for his front door, threw the present down on his step, pounded his door and flew back to the safety of the bushes and Grandma.

Together we waited breathlessly in the darkness for the front door to open. Finally it did, and there stood Bobby.

Fifty years haven't dimmed the thrill of those moments spent shivering, beside my Grandma, in Bobby Decker's bushes. That night, I realized that those awful rumors about Santa Claus were just what Grandma said they were: ridiculous. Santa was alive and well, and we were on his team. I still have the Bible, with the coat tag tucked inside: $19.95.

May you always have LOVE to share, HEALTH to spare and FRIENDS that care...And may you always believe in the magic of Santa Claus!

Love Hate Relationship with Jeans

EDITED AT 4PM: Hi girls!! You all have had plenty to say about jeans. I went to Kohl's today and bought some Levis. Why have I missed them all along? Thanks for your help.

I love blue jeans. I hate blue jeans. You understand, right? The right jeans with a sweater or cute top is a dream come true.

I just read an article at Simple Mom about the items all gals should have in their wardrobe. Of course, jeans are important. But lets talk about it...

There are straight leg jeans (my favorite). There are boot cut jeans which look great with heels but I don't wear heels. There are jeans that look like slacks (I want some).

From my perspective there are jeans for people with NO BOHINEY. There are lots of jeans with legs that come up to my chest.

I don't get it!! I'm pretty average, aren't you? I'm a pear shape.

I have a bohiney and a waist that do not match up. Get the picture? If it fits me in the bohiney, then someone else could climb in through the waist. Everyone has their issue. I went to the mall last week and tried on 9 pairs of jeans. I bought none!!

Anyone else have a big bohiney and little waist? What jeans do you like?

Holiday Garland Show and Tell

You know the Nester...she loves to organize us. Today she has grouped us to show off garlands around the house. Truth be told, I did this quickly so I could join in. I would still like to tweak it some with ornaments.

Can you see wires? It doesn't have to be perfect to be beautiful.

I think red and green apples are beautiful.

Found these striped candles back in the summer. I knew they would be perfect at some point.

Thank you all for coming by today. I enjoy your visits. By the way, I didn't get pictures when I was at my mom's house. She has been in the hospital..she's on the mend now. Didn't want to traumatize her with my camera.

Home Sweet Home

Today has been a glorious day! It's freezing outside and a little ice is coming down. We are staying warm in the house. I'm always so glad to come home.

As promised I want to share some pictures with you. This is my dad's house in Lockhart, TX. This American Four Square house was built in 1910. When he purchased it four years ago he was told that it was a Sears Roebuck house. However, he does not believe that is true because he's never found any of the markings that are usually present in a Sears house. Sorry I forgot to take pictures of the outside.

First let show you some of the house that HAS NOT been refurbished so you can get the scope of this project.

This is the first room you see when you walk in. The previous owner painted red, put fabric on the ceiling, tiles on the ceiling, you name it!! It's in terrible shape. EVERYTHING has to be rebuilt including the windows. It's a gypsy camp of stuff that he doesn't have a place for.

Fireplace mantel in the front room which has not been refinished. It will be beautiful when he's through with it. He thinks it's mahogany.

This is part of the back porch that he uses to do laundry. It will soon be a real laundry room. I think. Believe me, you really can't get the whole picture here. There are holes in the floor and the walls.

Part of a staircase. The whole center of the house is two staircases and hallways. You really can't tell in the picture how yucky this is!! Only a person with real vision would take on this job.

Now let's move on to parts of the house that have been refurbished.

Pretty different, huh? This is the master bedroom. Can you see how each room passes into the other?

This is the piano room which is right across from the ugly red room. I didn't get good pics but this room has two sets of sliding doors that are about 10 feet tall. There are also one of three fireplaces in here.

The floors throughout the house are original and have been refinished.

A little peek at the bathroom. Yes it's a beautiful tub. No there isn't a shower. Kind of has a Pottery Barn look doesn't it?

This is a look at the dining room. The wallpaper is creamy yellow with birds and vines. It's gorgeous!

Kitchen cabinets. Some are open and some are glass fronts.

Old O'Keefe and Merrit range. Dad's pride and joy in the kitchen.

Dad's Christmas cactus in full bloom.

This is my Dad!!

Leaving on a Jet Plane

Flying south today to visit my family. Hope to have some good pics to show you. Have I ever told you that my dad is refurbishing a house that is 100 years old? My mom built the cutest little house out in the country that has porches all the way around. I'm warming up my camera!!

I Have Been Spoiled!

I have officially been spoiled by Cindy of Phat Acre Farm blog. We were swap partners in A Very Vintage Christmas Swap hosted by Foxgloves, Fabric & Folly.
This box of treasures actually arrived at my house last week. I didn't let myself open it until I knew she had received hers also.

The box was chock full of goodies that anyone would absolutely adore. Candles, candy, napkins, an adorable kitchen towel, handmade soap, cookie sprinkles...well you can see!!

That little chinese food shaped box is full of ribbons and tags that are to die for!

Thank you Cindy for your sweet generosity. Merry Christmas to you!!

A Great Song for You

Have you heard the group Straight No Chaser? I guess they went to college together and performed as an acapella group. Now they have a CD out. It's amazing.

Click on the arrow to see you tube video. Happy Wednesday!!

Welcome to Tablescape Tuesday

Good Morning Friends.

This is my very first time to participate in Tablescape Tuesday. Our hostess is Susan at Between Naps on the Porch

Let me just say that for the past couple of months I wake up on Tuesday morning, grab my coffee, and run for the computer. You girls just amaze me with your attention to details that would never cross my mind. So I'm giving it a try.

First let me ask, "Would you like a cup of coffee? I usually have Diet Coke too but somebody scarfed it down."

The table is set for six. I called and invited college son and his roommates home for dead week supper. Of course, there is no commitment. They may come and they may not.

I purchased these plates at Target years ago when we were having a party. The back says Sakura Magic of Santa. The dinner plates are white with the ring of trees around the outside. The salad plates have various Santas on them. It's always a fun thing for me to switch out my every day dishes to these the day after Thanksgiving.

This platter stays in the middle of the table all the time. I just switched out the plate that is on the plate stand. It's easy to scoop the platter out of the way if needed.

Now last but not least is my cat Fluffy having a little treat. Brenda, I know I shouldn't..I can't help it!!

Everyone have a wonderful day and I will be around to visit you.

Yes I'm Eating Too Much

So this is how the conversation went as we were snuggling in bed last night:

Stacey said, "I just don't feel good. I think I have eaten too much."

Paul said in his sweetest we've been married almost 21 years voice, "Well you eat like a farm hand. Pumpkin pie, pecan pie, sweet potato pie, and that cinnamon thing Cindy made."

Don't you just love it when someone is keeping track of your intake?!!!

Speaking of the cinnamon thing, my friend Cindy made a cheesecake that was to die for. I will try to get that today.

Now it's 8:05 am and I already need a's so pathetic.