Monday, December 31, 2007

Saturday, December 29, 2007

CHRISTMAS PRESENTS

MARRIAGE RING
I am not making a big deal out of what I received for Christmas. But, As I did remark: Hb. did great shopping. But, this one is the best present.
When he and I were first married, our rings were made of solid 24 carat hand carved gold rings. Puzzle rings. They were carved, not a wax cast. From a small souk in Lebanon, Beirut. He had been in the Airforce and spent his second year there. He loved Beirut. When it exploded in to war and was literally demolished. Hb. was just devastated. He had planned to go back and show it to me. But that was quite awhile after we had been married. Anyway, when I finally agreed to marry him, he had the rings already. I waited a year, to decide.
I loved those rings. We still have them , but, well we have both gained weight and developed enlarged knuckles. So, had to take them off. They are in a box. I have been without a marriage ring for 15 years. Perhaps I kept hoping I would drop some this stuff I'm hauling around. However, not yet. So, I went without a ring.
I definitely did not want a diamond. I don't care for diamonds. They are too splashy and flashy. So, I only thought about a ring intermittently. It was not even on a wish list.
So, when I unwrapped this pretty little gift Tuesday morning. I was quite surprised. What a really pretty ring it is. The stones are Tanzanite. A very hard to find and unusual stone. They are only found where a meteorite has plowed into the earth.
They are quite small marquise cut stones and they are a sort of pale periwinkle color. Very dainty and feminine. It is nice to have marriage ring again.
Of course my poor chilblain hands do not do it justice. But, I love the ring.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

WHAT WE DID FOR CHRISTMAS

Fairly simple really. Christmas Eve we left around 5:30pm, to drive to a district in town that has a tradition of decorating for Christmas since just after W.W.II . A small fir tree in each front yard lit with multicolored lights. With lights outlining the house. And as many lights, more less that the occupant may want to do.
When I first came here to go to school. The first year my two roommates and I drove around. F. had lived here longer than me. So, she was our guide.
That area was always the nicest at Christmas. But, after 2000. After we had moved. (hated that move.) Different occupants moved in, and just seemed not to be into Christmas.
Only the 'Glen Eyrie' were consistent. And some houses across the street, might try to match. I may have written about this in a blog entry last year.
Anyway it was wonderful to see how much the citizen's there were expressing and sharing their Christmas Holiday celebrations.
We then went to YUM YUM Donuts. Dale got us one raised, glazed donut. and one crusty Apple Fritter. I love apple fritters. But it has been a long time since I had one. because of my stomach situation. However! Wonder of wonders! These were completely fresh. They were crisp, and not soggy. And didn't taste of stale oil. Ooh, lovely. We slowly ate them as we drove home. Just pulling off small bites and slowly savoring them. We hadn't had something from Yum Yum since last year, when we viewed the lights.
After we were home. We just sat in the big room. I can't call it a living room, because that's not where we sit the most. I have our sitting room in what was a front bedroom.
Our bedroom is a room in the back by the patio.
Anyway, we listened to Christmas music and enjoyed the lights on four trees. Hb. just sat. Know what? I sewed for my doll! I was feeling good enough to.
This year I chose to wait until the morning for our presents. I think Hb. may have been disappointed. But, he said he wasn't.
Next morning, I got up right after he did. He gets up early. 9:ish. So I had some coffee and toast and we opened our presents then. Hb. had done some great shopping.
We had a nice little Christmas. Holidays really begin in the heart.
_________________________________
Late in the afternoon. I did have a stomach upset, from the donut and fritter.
Well, the fritter was really tasty anyway.
Then the headache I was expecting finally developed this afternoon. Ugh.
Not to be concerned. The headache arrived too late and didn't spoil my Christmas.

Monday, December 24, 2007

LISTENING

DO YOU HEAR WHAT I HEAR?
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On Christmas eve. what do you hear?
Do you hear silver jingle bells and the
clip-clop, of horses hooves?
Or do you hear Bright brass bells, and reindeer
hooves go click, click up on the roof top?
Perhaps if you listen quietly with your heart,
You will hear the golden song of the angels
announcing Christmas Day.
As the Sun dawns in the East.
All the sounds of Christmas will
resonate all through the happy day.
All of these sounds to Christmas belong,
and are part of the Christmas song.






















































Friday, December 21, 2007

COUNTRY SCHOOL COMMUNITY CHRISTMAS

Here is another story about attending a one room country school. So, this is about what we did to celebrate Christmas there. I really wish I pictures for this story. But, cameras at that time were very simple and only worked, outside in the sunlight.
Everyone anticipated Christmas as soon as school started in the fall. The Annual Christmas Party was the main community event all year, not only for we kids. But, for the grown ups as well. When it was time, someone would go get the school Christmas tree. Sometimes it would come from property of my Dad's. It would have been located and tagged during good weather. Then either my Dad, Mr. L. Or my Uncle Hi would go cut it down and take it to our school, help the boys make a stand for it and set the tree up. The tree was always a fir, 8 maybe 9 Ft. Usually a silvertip. They are the prettiest and have even branch growth. The needles last longer too. Easy to decorate, All of the kids would have been cutting and making yards of paper chains in red and green, some in basic colors. It's neat because the little ones can do that too. We did have some of the lovely glass balls . Made by Shiny Brite. Shiny silvery lead icicles, ( I never ever knew anyone who ate them. Or knew someone who knew someone who had eaten the lead icicles.) Four lengths of silvery tinsel rope and a very nice star for the top. I believe we did on one occasion try to make popcorn and cranberry strings. However they were too tedious and boring. So, we demurred on that embellishment. We would make paper ornaments too, to help fill in between the glass balls. Cutouts or paper folded. Paper snowflakes are quite lovely on a tree. We hadn't electricity. So, no lights. I'm trying remember if My Dad and Hiram L. may have fixed up a battery set one year. Only used on the party night. There were always some balls broken some how. There was a cotton snow skirt to cover the base. We were up in scale from Little House Wilder books. Our families had good incomes. But, it was country. For the school room decorations, we had paper chains, in red, white and green, draped everywhere they could be hung. Cut outs of snow men, Santa Claus, Angels, Stars and a few paper snowflakes, oh, and paper candy canes. After that we would concentrate on the play that we had selected and would perform for the Christmas Program and Party, for all the parents and relatives that would attend our Christmas performance. We always began our rehearsals right after Thankgiving so we would be well practiced in our roles. The play was the main presentation. The Core part of the program. We always did a real play. Not that pseudo pageant other schools did. One's Faith was left private. So, we observed a 'separation of church and state' form.Because of course we still had our real curricula to study. Right now the only plays I am able to recall are: Dicken's Christmas Carol, an abridged version of course. The Bird's Christmas Carol and Mr. Murphy's Sunday Best Trousers. Mr. Murphy was a comedy. The first I think. But, we always chose a play that would be fun. And all of we kids liked doing a play. 'We' were 'actors'.
Besides play, which was the centerpiece of our program, we also included Chridtmas cariling and some recitations. Our party lasted about two or three hours. We began at 8:pm and it went to 10:pm. Or perhaps longer for some.
Because farmers and ranchers had chores to do. My Dad was a Lumberman. So our family didn't have those early hours to contend with. Except when school was on.
First the teacher would announce the program for the evening. There would be a recitation. Then there would be Caroling Time. Between 3 or 4 songs, I think. The entre-act would be held to allow some of the final staging for the play, to be set up.
The desks would all be shoved back against the north wall. The desk chairs lined up for seating. The adults sat in front on the chairs. Guest kids sat in back on the desks.
There were chintz or cretonne curtains on a line in front. About three feet from the front row.


Finally the teacher would call everyone to order. The program would begin. First we sang carols. Everyone liked singing and joined in with we kids as we sang.
Some of our favorites were: Hark, the Harald Angels', Silent Night, Good King Wenceslas, O' Little Town Of Bethlehem, of course: 'Jingle Bells'. A have to have. And several others. Very the likely singing began with -'bells'.
Then the play was presented. You know, it was just a school play, fairly amateur.
But, it was really enjoyed. Our relatives and friends would get into the story we were telling. And we all seem to have a good sense of timing, the reactions all came when they ought. And the laughs, wholehearted. We were just people. But, everyone liked a well told tale. Not one person ever made snide remark. Or talked to us when we were performing. There are professional road troupes out there, that are not so fortunate.
After the play was over, we had our bows to appreciative applause. Then, the stage area cleared. The curtains pulled out of the way. Food to be set up, to give time for who ever was going to be Santa Claus, could slip out and change. The Santa would usually be either: my Dad, My Uncle Hi or Mr. Lorenzen. We kids weren't sure. because several of the men had slipped out on errands. Magic.
The boys were appointed to help Santa pass out the gifts. To the Adults too. They had drawn names. Each child received one present from their family. But the boys had drawn names too, because there were more of them. There were only four girls and we all exchanged presents. Usually books. Because we all liked to read. I always asked my parents for books for my school gift. Also, that way nothing was better than anyone else's. All of the kids, no matter age, received a Christmas Stocking filled with hard Christmas candy , an apple and an orange in the toe. And nuts too. Filberts, pecans, walnuts and Brazil Nuts. Yummy.
After the presents were handed out and opened. The food all have been devoured. Boys, you know. Then the cleanup. Desks put back in their places. The fire in the furnace put out. When things seemed in order. Everyone would go home. A good time had by all.

And we kids had two marvelous weeks off.
*******************************************
The picture on top is the books I received as 'Santa' gifts at the school Christmas. I show eight. Four from my parents. Two are from girls ,I traded gifts with.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

PRESENTS

In my Wishbook post, I realized I wrote in such a way, that it seemed we kids only got one thing for Christmas. Not so. Actually we received two presents from each family member. So, that makes 6 each. There were 'Santa' presents and there were personal presents. But, the 'big' presents came from 'Santa'. The splurge presents were the special ones. Like my dolls and later my dollhouse and Bud's Lionel train set. So we weren't skimped at all.
Really though, it was difficult for our parents to not spoil us. They really had to hold themselves back. Because both of them as far as I know, grew up without Christmas. They only had Christmas together, after they were married and the first child born. Our Mother insisted on it. She wanted Christmas very much.
When I was older and asked Mom and Dad what Christmas was like when they were kids, I was stunned when they told me they hadn't any Christmas. The day was just another day. I eventually learned such a thing was not that unusual. Christmas is a real privilege and a fantastic joy to all who can celebrate it.
This a picture of Marie now. She is wearing a real baby dress. The elastic is gone in the sleeves, and needs replaced.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

MAGICAL WISHBOOK

CHRISTMAS PRESENTS:

Christmas Shopping was easy when my brothers and I still believed in Santa Claus.
Because each year we would receive the Wards and Sears catalogs in the mail. THE WISHBOOK! YES! My older brother always claimed dibbsies first, because he was oldest and firstborn. Are we in Europe? I thought we lived in the USA. To him, same thing, as our forbears came from there. (oh, for pete's sake.) Mom let him have it to keep the peace.
So, Bud would spend the day reading and intense perusing, taking his time. This was a serious decision after all. We could only choose two things for Santa To bring us. Mustn't let Santa think we were greedy or spoiled. I would finally get to look through the book for a short while before bed. But, I would get it for most of the next day. I would spend most of the time dreaming over the dolls. I could only have one. After that it was Mom and Dad's turn.
Bud and I would show Mom and Dad what we would like. But, the choices had to have Mom and Dad's approval. Price and practicality, suitability and play quality. Then they would write the letter, (make out the order) and send it off. Very clever explanation, the letter was sent to Ward's or Sears , they would forward the request to Santa.
Dad would tell the Post Office to hold any packages. To let him know. He would pick them up when we kids wouldn't know.
Somehow Mom and Dad had a way of getting us out the way while Mom wrapped the presents.
We ended up opening our presents on Christmas eve. Because Mom and Dad had been married on that day. Dad always gave Mom an Anniversary gift. Bud and I would get mixed up and start to open ours. They had a time trying to get us to understand. When we were little, we could open one gift. When it was too hard to wait 'til morning. so, Mom and Dad said, oh, to heck with it. And that's how we came to open the presents on Christmas eve.
Bud and I and much later, my kid brother always got at least one of our chosen toys from the Wish Book.
******************************************
This a catalog picture of my Eff and Bee Baby doll, I named Marie. She is twenty inches tall. I still have her. She no longer has that dress. But, she can wear 'newborn' size baby clothes.
I know I said I don't go much for baby dolls. But, Marie has always been very special. She came from a Wards catalog .

Saturday, December 15, 2007

ANNIVERSARY

Today is our anniversary. Can't have imagined. No, don't ask. Since I am ill most of the time. Kind of takes the fun out of it. To add on that. Hb. had to go get a root canal. Isn't that a present!? But, late afternoon, Hb. took me out for a ride to look at Christmas lights and a chocolate coffee from Starbuck's. He mixes it, not one of those silly latte things. Puleeeze. I really would have liked to have gone to Barnes and Noble. However, I quite likely would have contracted something nasty and then have been sick from now , until after New Year's.
Hb. bought us a very nice card. Oh, yeah, back about the late 1980's or early 90's. I had us begin to use only one card. Since I was working odd hours all the time, Hb. was the only one of us who had time to shop. Works out quite well. Besides, a card costs as much as a book. And only has one page of writing. Maybe two. I am not cheap, really. Just practical. Besides, he finds the cards that say the sweetest, nicest things. He brought us our traditional Poinsettia, a pink one. Hooray. There doesn't seem to be the selection of colors there used to be. Last year was red. Varigated poinsettias used to be available. But, I guess they didn't catch on. I loved them. I like unusual plants. In the past, I've sort of grown, or tried to grow several different kinds. Hum. Maybe I ought to talk about that sometime. Next year.
**********************
Here is a fairly good pic of our annual poinsettia. You know what we found out. They are no longer grown to continue. They are considered to be like a cut flower. They are only rooted stems. That's why they don't last much past after Jan. 1st.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

TAGGED-ugh

I've been tagged by endment.
*********************
You know I did a blog last year, objecting to the mis-use of the word: weird. I think I will put it up again. When someone is deemed weird' they become, through no fault of their own, as objects of derision and redicule. To be denigrated and/or bullied. Not nice. Look up the word; weird in the dictionary. You will see what I am talking about.
**********************
1-However, I do have a thing that I feel defines me. I was born at home. Nearly killing my Mother. although, she said I was the easiest of the three.
2-On a hot August night.
3-At 1:AM
4-on a Sunday morning
5-So, I'm a Leo.
6-I don't care for cats.
7-I lived in that same home, Had as my bedroom,
the one I was born in. until I left at age 21.
*******************************
'Nuff said.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

ANGEL-NOEL

I said that I had not made a Christmas doll when I was still making my dolls. There were so many out there at that time, I just felt I didn't need to. I looked at a lot of angels. There were all kinds of all kinds of mediums. To me they were either too much or not enough.
I used to get the catalogs from Franklin Mint. I have serveral of their dolls. They are quite beautiful.
They had a number of angels in their line. I finally decided on NOEL. She has a very real face. With a lovely expression. Very calm and serene. So, I ended up bringing her to my house to live with me. However, she ended up staying in her box for a very long time, before I had time and space to put her out on display. She is so beautiful. Understated, not flashy or exaggerated in her costume. But, still Christmas.
9/11/01 destroyed the collecting field. Which is way too bad. People are being frugal as times changed.

Saturday, December 8, 2007

CHRISTMAS TREES

Here is a picture of our trees again. As usual we have three small ones. They are rather fun. My Hb. got a great shot in front of the window. No reflection. All they have on them are lights. And five angels between them. the two trees on the left have two angels each. The little tree on the right has just one angel. They are made by me. I made them out of various extravagant ribbons. Satins and brocades. They are between 4" to 6" tall. I made and sold most of them at a shop in the 90's. This all I have left. I kept them for myself.
Back to our trees. We decided to go for this size, as we just have the energy to do an 8" footer anymore. And we sold it. I'm selling as many of the ornaments as I can.
These trees are more fairy tale like with just lights too.
There is another tree in the corner by the un-usable fireplace. The room seems cozy though anyway, with just the trees on.
Oh, yes, we leave them out all year. This next year though, they will need to be taken apart and dusted. The tallest tree is about four feet tall.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

ADVENTURES IN COOKING-4 *Fudge*

Holiday Treats- Fudge candy


During the Winter a lot of people like to make their own holiday sweets. My Uncle Hi was one, and Mrs. Schnieder another. We were quite glad about that. Because you see, Candy was not one of the culinary arts my family was able to obtain.
My Uncle made: divinity, fudge, penuche and caramel turtles.
Mrs. S made the greatest penuche. Better than my uncle's. But, uncle's divinity was better. It didn't matter. We gratefully and with much appreciation received their gifts of Holiday treats. Since we knew they wouldn't eat anything made by my Mother. (spiteful. oh, that's another story.) Dad would buy small gift packages of cheese and assorted nuts, maybe hard candies, to give in return. It was a real loss when times changed and they no longer made the candy.
We tried divinity, what we ended up with, was a batch of seven minute frosting. We used it on graham crackers.
As for penuche, don't even go there. The dogs liked it.
Now fudge. Where do I begin?
We had always tried to make our own fudge. And in a way, we did. Make our 'own' fudge. It was like no one else's, ever. No matter what we did, it never came out really the same way twice. It was always an adventure to try fudge. Hah. And a lot of fun too. It was something all of us would paticipate in.
Uncle Hi gave us some advice. I don't why we couldn't make it work. And Mrs.S. also had some suggestions. We even bought a thermometer. Maybe we just were in too much of a hurry.
Mostly, we ended up with sugared fudge. Hard as a rock, we had to chip it out of the pan. What's more, we became so used to having that sort of fudge, when we bought some real fudge, it just didn't seem to taste right. Isn't that one of the funniest thing you have ever heard of?
Absolutely hillarious!! We thought so. Real fudge was much too rich for our palate.
What a hoot.
The reason we used cooking as recreation, we lived in the country and there wasn't any TV. It was brfore Tv. We did have radio though. Sometimes we would make cookies. I will tell that at another time.
Once I left home, I never tried candy again. Besides, I lived in a city, I could find whatever I wanted.
But, homemade candy does taste much different than commercial made. Much better.
Sorry, no picture for this either.

Monday, December 3, 2007

CHRISTMAS DOLL

You know, for some reason, when I was making my big original dolls, I never did get around to making a " Christmas doll". I never thought about this before. That is so strange. I began to think about it. To figure out why. The only thing I can come up with, is that I had collections of: Angels and fairies. I had a beautiful Franklin Mint angel. I also had purchased one of Marie Osmond's dolls. She is a special doll. Serafina Snowflake. A really lovely doll. Haven't found her since we moved here. I thought I had put her in her box. Nope. Guess I will spend this December trying to locate her.
But, then I saw I had Merrie Christmas sitting out, and I said, oh, right, I had made 'a' Christmas doll. Merry is 20" tall. But she is from a commercial pattern, not one of my originals. So, she doesn't quite count. She is a very nice doll. Quite companionable. But here she is, to wish you 'Merry'.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Friday, November 30, 2007

STAR FLOWER JADE PLANT

Just in time for Christmas.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

STAR STUFF AND MOONDUST

I have been watching the Shows on the the PBS, HISTORY CHN. and DSC, about how the universe and planets were formed. Fasinating reasearch. How much we do not know and never will.
My Dad and I were both interested in Astronomy. In summer we would take the telescope and go out in the big open space out from the sawmill sorting chain. Set up the scope and spend time looking at the stars and moon.
The MOON is the child of the Earth, the Earth is a child of the Solar System, which is a child of the Galaxy. And the UNIVERSE is a the Great Child of the GREAT MYSTERY.
We are children of the GREAT MYSTERY too. All a part of everything. Eternal yet, not really unending.
Even the Native peoples have that tradition in their sacred stories . The legend runs all thru the folk and sacred tales all over the world.
We are down here on this world made just for us. We are all children of the Universe. Perhaps our Milky Way Galaxy was created just for us. If so, ? How many more places were created for other beings?
All of the stars and galaxies out there, the new particles they've found. Black holes, empty spaces without stars or matter.
To have to realize that some great future time, all of this will come to a huge change. So, after all, what does all this mean in the end?
All of the other planets out there like us, their arts, music, paintings, sculpture, architecture? Our philosophies and poetry? Literature . Those are children of the Universe too.
What will happen to them? Although, they might be in the eternal memory, so not to be lost.
Oh, by the way, this is not a Christmas story in any way shape or kind. It is about Astronomy and the study of the Universe. In case you were wondering.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

The Second Of My Greatest Gifts.

Since we are coming up on the Gifting Season. I wanted to talk about my next best ever gift. And privelege. This is dedicated to my Mom and Dad.
When I started to blog, at the behest of a friend, Most of the people I came across belonged to a webring that was following the book: The Artist's Way' by Julia Cameron. All about finding and following your bliss in creative writing. What I found interesting, was, that all of the lessons were very like all the studies in the Literature curricula I had in college. Composition, expression and rhetoric. The book was a sort of college course for about $20.00, I found it almost equal to what my Dad paid around $10,000.00 for. Well, when I asked Dad, that's what he told me. It very well could have been more. Tuition fees were less back then. Although that price covered my complete four years. Isn't that something? The fees now are just too ridiculus. How and where are our new leaders going to be coming from. Actually, with the extra majors and minors. I think I was just this side of being a career student. I had put in 6 years.
However, What I want to write about, is what I consider to be the greatest gift I ever received. Outside the gift of LIFE, that is, from my parents.
That is the great privilege of a College Education. Both my parents had wanted that for themselves. But, the whole world fell apart at that time. So, it didn't happen for them. I wanted it too. Because they had shown me how much better life would be. And there were things I wanted to know and things I wanted to do.
My counselor in high school told me I shouldn't even try. It would just be waste if my time and my Dad's money! You great twit sir, (well I didn't really say THAT. I thought it.) And you are supposed to be a friend of my parents! Instead, I replied, "I beg your parden, no sir, I am going to college". You know, I passed all the entrance tests just fine too.
Years later, Mr. Neasham apologized to me. He had became a counselor at the Jr. College I first attended. And he just had to check my records. He was much chagrined to see good my grades were. When he apologized, I just gave him a distainful look. I knew I would make it. I was smarter then anyone up there gave me credit for. I was shy and had a somewhat self esteem thing, Which I overcame. They insisted on comparing me to my older brother. (Not his fault.) That is a story I will tell later. And I inherited my Parents natural hunger and thirst for learning. I also pick up an occaisional bit of wisdom here and there along the way. When I get real lucky. The quest for wisdom is a life time search.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

COUNTRY SKATING

I posted pictures of the city rink in downtown center. I rather wish I could skate there, if only briefly. But, I'd probably fall and break something .
I didn't learn to skate at a rink. I first learned to skate on a pond out in the lava beds in back of my Grandfather's meadow. We would all pile into either the pickup or old jeep. Then It was a rough and bumpy ride down the road, then through the barnyard. Out the cattle lane to the meadow and rattlety, humpetty, across the empty wheatfield to the lava rocks.
One Christmas My older brother and I asked for ice skates for Christmas. Because we had sort figured we might be able to find a pond we could use. We thought maybe the millpond. However, it never really froze over or deep enough. Too much turpentine and such in the water. Dad said we might be able to use a lava rocks pond. We would find a way to get to it. And we did. Some years there was snow on the ice, so my Dad and older brother made a big snow scraper out of wood. We just left it over there all the time. Rather than tote it back and forth.
It was always very cold of course, we tried to dress warm enough. One time I did get frost bitten on my hips, even with wool trousers. and a pair of my Dad's long undies. Just the leggings. I wore woolly under shirts in winter.
I believe I decided not to skate anymore that particular winter. My brother and some of my cousins did though. It's a guy thing.
I was never very good at skating. I seem to have a built in balance problem. I had quite a time trying change feet. The first year, I would glide on my left foot, and push myself with right foot. I just tried to get the feel of the ice and the skates. Other kids just put on their skates and take off. Maybe a fall or two. But otherwise, off they go. They would laugh at me. But I ignored them. They were only my stupid boy cousins anyway. Boys always laugh at girls. I did eventually get so I could change feet and sort of get a hang on the balance thing. No spins or twirls. Just straight skating.
When we went over to skate, Dad would throw on a big old truck tire on the vehicle to take over. When we got to the skate place, The tire would be set fire, and that's what we used for heat and light. The tire lasted about two hours or so. Just as long as we skated. You can't toast over that though. If we did have a sort of skating party with some other kids. Dad would build a small wood fire for us to toast over. We extinguished it as soon as the food was gone.
I am not sure how many years we skated or how often. Perhaps as long as I was in grammar school and when I was in high school. Then perhaps once a week. On weekends or Christmas.
There are pictures of some of those times. I thought I had a couple. But, I don't. I have to ask my oldest nephew to send me our family pics. I keep forgetting to.
So, here is a photo of the lake in fall, before the freeze. Where I'm standing was our skate landing.
The picture is very old and somewhat faded. Just a regular snapshot.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

BLACK FRIDAY

Hah!! First people stuff and gorge themselves with food. Then stay up all night to get a low price on something that is overpriced in the first place. And they stuff the credit cards to the limit. 'But I got it on sale!!' They cry. Yeah, but with the monthly interest, how much has it cost, by time the card is paid up.
I don't do the 'day after madness' anymore. However, every shopping day after Thanksgiving, is madness. Hustle bustle. I hate sales. I can never find anything, or if I do, wrong size, wrong color, why bother. Or, it is all sold out.
And, I always used to really like to go shopping. My Mom and I loved the hunt. To see what wonderful something we might find. With Mom it was mainly clothes. She was a real clothes-horse. I learned style from her.
Elec-tech is not my thing. Dispite this new 'Kindle' thing. I prefer a real book.
I think this was a 'crazy dog barking' post.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

ICE and PALM TREES-1

Here is a night shot. The rink looks like a boat!!!!!!! If you didn't know what you are looking at! The fence is around the rink. Resembles railings on a boat. Very disconcerting. There are christmas lights on all the palm tree trunks. Funkey*
No, I don't skate. Did as a kid and teenager. After that other things came along. Life.

ICE and PALM TREES-2


Daytime shot of outdoor Ice Rink at downtown center. See, we do not have ice or snow here. Except way up on the eastern hills during a very unusual winter. The rink was opened just this weekend past. And will be open until just after New Year's day.

ICE and PALM TREES-3


The ice rink outside in the town center. Aerial view at night.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

OUR DINNER STYLE

I have two stories. So, am not sure which to write about. One is about our thanksgiving. The other is about my Mom and me.
In a previous entry, I wrote about the very rich dinner in a magazine. Well our family special dinners were not like that.
Out, of choice. We began cutting back on fat in our diet in the late 40's and early 50's. When Dad bought the new cookware set; made by the brand new company ' Eckoware. All stainless steel. Very sanitary. Easy to clean and cooked the food properly. I have some of my ware yet.
For Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner, we had, turkey with a sage stuffing. Mashed white potatoes. Boiled chunk sweet potatoes with brown sugar syrup. We didn't care for the marshmallows. Salad. A vegetable, perhaps; carrots or green beans, whatever. And we had gravy. A dinner is not a real dinner without enough gravy. Low fat. Dad made the gravy and sometimes Bachelor bread, it's made in a cast iron skillet Better than biscuits. And cranberry sauce of some kind. Canned, with berries or just the jellied.
Pumpkin pie with real whipped cream.
We had rather simple food, because my Dad didn't care for fancy, rich, fussey food. Salt and pepper were the main seasonings. (We did use mustard and catsup. With other foods. But not with turkey. Ugh.)
I like food that is on the 'le cuisine' side. I used to be adventuous, Now I'm back to simple.

Monday, November 19, 2007

TOO MUCH!!!!!!!!

There is bountiful and then there is plenty. However, there comes a time when: there is; Too Much.
Last Sunday, I wanted to get out of the house, So I had Hb. take me over to our little Library. I was hoping for a new Ouilter's book. But, Not. I did pick out a couple of issues of Ladies Home Journal. The November issue features Paula Deen.
The recipe section presented her Selection for Thanksgiving Dinner. WOW!

Here is the calorie stats: per serving

Cola-Basted Ham--------------------330

Deep-Fried Turkey------------------370

Green Beans with
Red Potatoes------------------------310

Corn Bread Stuffing-----------------675

Sweet Potato Casserole------------905

Stuffed Cranberry Sauce-----------215

Double Chocolate
Gooey Butter Cake ----------------365

Thanksgiving Pumpkin Pie---------590
-----------------------------------------
---------------------------------3,060

That's almost twice the calories for one person for one day!! And they likely eat second helpings.
I would probably only eat very small servings, like; a tablespoon of dressing, a tablespoon of sweet potatoes, A close to regular serving of the greenbeans with potatoes. I do prefer turkey to ham, because it digests better for me. And for dessert a 1/8th piece of -pie. I would only taste a bite of cake from my Hb.'s cake. And one half glass of wine. After that, coffee.
After that we would excuse ourselves and go for a walk around the block, weather permitting.
The point of the dinners is to share food and be together. Not, to stuff oneself stupid. Enjoy, but not to the point of becoming sick.
I do believe that only once have I ever made Thanksgiving dinner. However, that is another story. Have you seen that commercial where the young woman is wrestling with the big turkey? HA, HA, that's me, been there, done that.

Friday, November 16, 2007

NOVEMBER SYMBOLS.

I have been looking for for symbols for November. Something other than: Pilgrims, Mayflower, Indians, pumpkins, corn, oh and turkeys. Is that it? Have I forgotten something from history?
Those seem so trivial for such a Holiday. I can't think of anything original to write about this year. I feel that the story I wrote last November used up all my best material.
One family thing is pretty much like another.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

DECONSTRUCTING

Lately I have been going through a lot of my possessions, trying to decide what to keep a little longer, and what to eliminate now. We have made contact with someone and they are taking them and selling them. I hope. I have no idea how things are going. You know what? I really don't want to. It is hard enough for me already, to know they are being sold lower than they ought. Because of the economy and the buyers lack proper ideas of value.
What is going on, is that I am dismantling a lifetime here. It is rather difficult. I originally was hoping to have some heirs to give it all to. However, they are not really interested, so they do not deserve anything. I am taking pictues to leave behind.
The other thing is, the selling proccess is very slow. So much is involved.
I collected so many different categories. Dolls, horse figurines, Fenton glass, porcelain, Christmas ornaments, Teddy Bears, Soft Rabbits. Books. Etc. I have a lot to plow through. It can be quite painful. This weekend, I finally realized I have gotten overwhelmed. And That's why I can't sew. The other project is too forward in my mind.
I need to go somewhere, just to get away for awhile. If I go to a mall or bookstore, I'd very likely catch something. Then I'd be sick the rest of the winter.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

CANDLE IN THE WINDOW

Always in our hearts and in our minds.

Our heroes in spite of themselves.

The ones who sacrificed to keep

our country Free. The safe haven
and repository of Democracy.
You all have all our unending
gratitude and thanks.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

CINDERELLA=Not that one

12:05AM -- Damn, my coach turned into a pumpkin again. Same story, night after night. Then I have to walk in these stupid glass slippers. They sure pinch. And if I take them off and try to walk barefoot the frigging cobblestones cut my feet. Ouch! Turned my ankle. ( Yes, 2 shoes. After all, in the original, there are two more nights.) But, the Prince is so charming and so handsome. He waltzes like a dream. I can't help but lose track of the time.
It wouldn't be so bad but I have to spend all day tomorrow catching those stupid mice. Well, that isn't half bad, because the little gluttons love cheese. But rounding up those lizards...ugh! (shudder)...slithery things. Why did my godmother have to use lizards for footmen.
Not only that, I have to hurry and get home before my stepsisters and step-mother. Because if they found out where I was tonight. Those witches would storm the house down.
Boy, do I hate those three harpies. One of these days...pow!
There is the house ahead, just a few more steps. Now where's that key? (Unlocks door-it creaks) Oops. I'll have to oil this thing tomorrow. (Enters, sits.) One shoe off. Hmmm, the other (wiggles toes, looks at clock. Jumps up.) Good grief, they'll be home in a minute and I'd better have their tea ready. I'd better have it just so, because they will be real cranky. But here they are. I will get them back, after I marry the Prince, and regain my inheritance they stole from me.

----------------------------------------------------------
Orig. CGZ
Pic. by a stamp

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

FRUITS OF A WOODLAND WALK

My Hb. goes for walks when the weather is good and he feels up to it. I don't walk anymore. Not like I used to be able to. Either my legs hurt, or my back. Or my IBS is being a nuisance. So, this time of year, I ask Hb. to look for tree and bush things. This time he found some fruit on an ornamental Quince. I've always wondered what a real quince looked like. These may not ripen. That is another tree. Last week, he came back with some green berries from the Arbutus unedo, also called: THE STRAWBERRY TREE. They did ripen. I hope I can go and see it when the fruit has ripened. It is a pretty tree.
Up on the left are some little live Oak acorns. The green berries are from the Pittosporeum. I always call them: Dinosaur food. And I really like the cute little Birch cones. I don't know what the little red berries are. They are hard, not soft.
The grounds here have a great variety of trees and plants from around the country and the world, because the man who built it loved nature and wanted the grounds to be a living Arboretum.
Makes it all quite pleasant.

Monday, November 5, 2007

LOVELY LADY APPLES

Time for the little Lady apples. On a cute Christmas tree plate. They are so nice. I can't eat them, but my Hb. can. I only look at them.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

SATURDAY

In November, 1989, a few days before his 57th. birthday, my older brother died from a brain aneurysm. His birthday was Nov., 7. In a way it was a suicide. He and his wife resented and hated me. Because they believed I had betrayed him out of his 'Birthright'. When it comes to money, families became totally insane. Rather than will all to Bud, Dad split what there was, between the three of us. People should grow up, and be more rational. Not less. Now in a way, my younger brother and my three older nephews blame, Priss. The 2nd wife for Bud's death. So, what really happened was that Bud hurt himself, not me.
He just was never able to dominate or get the best of me, and pay me back for being born and 'taking his rightful place'. Total silliness.
I always tried to make friends with him. Never happened. There were bits and pieces over the years. But, I could tell it was ephemeral.

Friday, November 2, 2007

STARDANCER CELESTIAL



When down goes the Sun
and twilight comes,
We watch the stars
appear, one by one.
The Stardancer's dance,
has just begun.
The stars then
seem quite twinkley,
but, 'tis really the dancers
choreography
that we see.
They dance and spin
and twirl all through
the night.
That is why the stars
shine so bright.
Each Dancer has
a separate star.
A myriad corps de ballet
Even more in the Milky Way.
Dancing all the night away,
'til the Earth turns 'round,
here again, comes day.
So, after they had done their best.
Each Stardancer takes their rest.
-------------------------------------
Orig. Poem by CGZ 2007
Orig. Doll by CGZ 1994

Thursday, November 1, 2007

NOVEMBER=UNTH



Another shade of fall. A time full of family dinners which do nothing to keep us thinner. More turkey, sweet potatoes, cranberry sauce, jello salad, pumpkin pie, oh my, My appetite was too big. geez, I feel such a pig.

A family time with all togther. But, all we do is pluck and ruffle, each other's feathers.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

MASQUERADE BALL

This is an actual costume I wore to the one and only Masquerade Ball we ever were able to attend in the city in Nov. 1986. It was a lot of fun.
I designed and made it too. I went as 'The Silver Lady'. The gown is made of a liqiud silver lame' fabric. I wore a pale wig with white and silver flowers in the hair.
All kinds of food, and 4-6 pavillions for dancing to different styles of music.
At midnight fireworks were set off, INSIDE the Civic Center Dome building. It was tall enough for that. Amazing.
It was fun. Then in 1987 October 19, Stock Market Crash happened. Took serveral years to recover from that. Well actually we still are. There have been a LOT of set backs.
There hasn't been Society Masquerade Ball since.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

WHOLE LOT OF SHAKIN' GOIN' ON

No, I am not talking about the song.
At 8:04 PM, We had an earthquake of 5.6. It lasted between 16-20 seconds. And yes, that is a long time. Where we live is just a short space from the epicenter. Our dwelling both bounced and rocked. I was a little scared. Because as it turns out, It is the biggest since the Loma Prieta in October, 17, 1989. That one was a 6.9 to 7.1. And lasted 15 seconds.
This time I was on the computer, my Hb. had gone up to the spa to use the pool and tub. Nothing fell or broke. At least as well as I can tell
It took almost 20 minutes for the TV stations to catch up. So, I was able to get what happened.
Then, people began to email pictures, to show different sorts of damages.
Oh, yeah, a lot people lost their cell phone service for about 15 minutes. Gave them something to consider.It is now 10:25 PM, and there has been 10 of the small after-shocks. This is normal. They will happen for days.
On Wednedsday, there was a 3.9 after shock. Pretty good sized bumper.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

A RACY WEEKEND

No, not that type of racy. There was both Horse racing and NASCAR racing.
This will probably be a snore for you. But, I like it.
The NTRA Breeder's Cup Championship Races were split into two days for the first time in the history. So, it was Friday and Saturday. Three hours Friday and 6 hours Saturday. And it was pouring rain both days. So the track was a quagmire. Most of the horses did a brave job in spite of the conditions. I really only watched about half of each race. serveral of the touted horses did not do well. The big race was the last one on saturdaay. It was a race of favorites. Almost a mutiple match race. The winner was a lovely bronze color 3 yr. old male horse, named 'Curlin'. But, a horse was lost. The pride of the European horses named 'George Washington'. He made a mis-step in the mud and fractured an ankle. No hope, so he was euthanized right there.
I also watched most of the NASCAR races. Busch on Saturday and NEXTEL on Sunday.

Friday, October 26, 2007

October-26-07

Couldn't write today. Because 21 years ago at 1:PM my Father passed away.
That is also why October is a hard month for me.
As May is too. My Mom.
So, Halloween as it is observed today, is a lot of silly nonsense. And I find it disrespectful.
It used to be just a dress-up day. And a social thing. Because it used to be a an end of
Harvest celebration.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

COSTUMES FOR KIDS








How about something like this for your kids?
Kids, nieces, nephews or grandchildren.
What do you think?
Would they instead, say, Hey, that's geeky.
What no 'Scream' costume?
My kid brother had a Davy Crocket outfit.
He wore it until he out grew it.
I think the 'Horror Parade' that used to
come to my door at Halloween, was terrible.
What kind of parent in their right mind
would buy an 'Angel Of Death' for their 5 or 6 year?
That is not cute.
The little 6 or 7 yr. old girl with her Mother and
white toy poodle got the big candy bar one year.
For the cutest and most original costume.
Mom and daughter had on matching dalmation's jammies. They had stenciled spots on the poodle to match. Way, way too cute. No, I didn't take a photo. Which I am sorry for.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

HAVE YOU PICKED YOUR COSTUME YET?

Here are a few suggestions.
Do I have mine? I'm not telling.
That wil be a later entry.


Monday, October 22, 2007

ENTRY ETC.






Daytime, really is not a good time for me to write. Just wanted to let you know I am still here. Fall is not my time either. Not doing much artistically. But, I am sort of letting my book journal go too. I had been doing collages in my book journal, and the book wasn't closing . So, I decided to start using drawings again. Then I discovered the collage work had made me lazy. Drawing takes too long!!!!!!!! Ha,Ha. Isn't that funny? I have brought out some of my McKillip books down from the loft and have been reading them again. They are very moody. And very mysterious. I am not sure this is the type of story I should be reading right now. But the artwork on the covers is wonderful.
Oh, yes, this is another of my computer drawings. They go very quickly and easy too. They add to my laziness.

Friday, October 19, 2007

SHADOW CASTLE
























THE SAGA of lost a book
When I was in 8th. grade. The Bookmobile used to come round periodically. The county seat was two hours south. A good sized town, so there was a great selection of books available. It was great, because I really looked forward to it's arrival. To almost everyone else, there was a loud groan, because all that meant to them, was more homework. And good grief, Shudder, a 'Book Report', 'They had to actually 'READ' the book.
However, some of us were delighted, with the arrival of the bookmobile. Because, since 8th. grade was really a Junior High grade, we only had access to the high school library. And it did not have much of a selection of fiction. Since a high school library is set up for research. But, I did get to read some of the classics in literature.
Even better we were allowed to check out two mobile books maximum, for two weeks.
Two books were ok, that was all I would be able read, help Mom and do my homework.
I very much interested in Folklore, Folk tales, fairy tales and mythology. The bookmobile carried a good selection, when they found out I was interested. That was neat, the librarian and aide asked us as we were checking out. During the whole year I managed to read about 24 to 26 books. Books are to a soul, like water to a thirsty person.
Well, this one time, one of the books I found and checked and out was a quite nice fairy tale story book. by a modern author. I don't remember the other book. It quite likely was a book of myths or such.
The fairy tale was so very original, about fairies, elves, goblins, (which I do not care for. However, they were only in a couple of chapters.) Magic and even a nice dragon.
I had the book two entire weeks and maybe read it three or four times. Trying to remember the tales. The story of the Blue Princess was my favorite story in the book.
I really hated having to return the book that day. And at the time I checked it out, they said I couldn't renew it. So, I reluctantly returned the book. Picked out two new ones. When I was checking those out, I remarked the assistant, that I wish I could have renewed that book. They looked up said, "Yes you can. Who said that you can't. "
I was so dismayed.
So, it was supposed have been put back on the shelf, so they let me go look. No, the book wasn't there. They said they would look, and have it for me next time.
Well, after I had checked out my two books and was on the way out, I saw Loretta Wright with it. She was saying to her friend Janice, "this is a nice thin book, it should be easy for me to read and report on."
Janice replied, 'That's a kids book.'
'I know ', said Loretta.
First my heart sunk, then I got mad. She was so careless. That was all a book meant to her.
I shouldn't be hard her, she died of emphysema and lung cancer in her 50's. And you know what?. She adamantly refused to stop smoking.
Turns out she never returned the story book.
And I, for some strange reason, had completely forgotten to write it into my: 'Books Read' list. I had totally forgotten the complete title and the author. Very odd, because mainly, that doesn't happen to me. All I could remember was that there was the word ' castle In the title. Frustrating .
I looked the rest of my life for that book. When I found book dealers who did searches, I had them look for it. I checked out every library I can across, in any town I happened to be in. I looked in big towns, in small towns. I would about children's books with the word: 'castle' in them. Nothing. The only other book that came up was: The Enchanted Castle' by E. Nesbit. Nope, not.
Well, I had more or less given up. Then whole thing was like an hallucination. from my youth.
In February, 2005- I was doing some browsing in Amazon. Looking up books in different categories. Sometimes successful, sometimes not. It is rather like gambling, you win some, you lose some. I finally got this certain feeling. And I thought, ok, what the heck. Brought up books again, typed in just the word 'castle'. In fiction.
A lot of titles came up. So, I just began to scroll down. Almost all the other books I had seen in the past with 'castle ' in the title. were listed. I kept looking and scrolling. Waiting to see what would happen.
JACKPOT!!! on the fourth page. Holy Houdini!!!!!!! My stars lead me again. I was a little dismayed and surprised, because the "The Shadow Castle" by Marian Crockrell had been republished in 2000. But, YES-YES-YES. But, after all this time. I have yet to figure out the reasoning behind the last 4 year delay. I am positively ecstatic about it. I ordered a copy on the spot right from Amazon. Full price or not, had to have my copy.
The reviews and comments on Amazon about the lovely little set of tales all express the sames feelings "I have . Lovely, lovely. The was a long time for wish to come true.
My wishes only work on things. Not on people.
I know I have written a long story. However, all of it seems important to me.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

FIRST TOUCH OF AUTUMN

It has been raining. But now Autumn begins. It comes later here in this part of the state.The Liqiud Ambers should be next. And then the fruitless cherries. I love the color of the Hawthorns take. I go gather a small basket full, I add a few Birch cones and a berry thing. Just for display.
It is nice.
Autumn is here in full color by December.
I almost forgot. The Marvelous Gingko trees that become shimmering gold. And may have been the Elusive Golden Raintree in the book and movie, 'Raintree County'. Superb story of life, love, and compromise of expectations.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

SOMETIMES-NOTHING

I decided I would go to our little library here and see what sort of sort of books people have been reading. I chose 6 books. And hoped. Unusual for me to pick new mainstream literature.
I am sorry to report, I was not entertained. The two I did like. I realized I had already read. I had just forgotten to list them in my 'Read Book' list. Two of the books were:'wallbangers'. The female kept biting her lip in any and all crisies. Man, that annoys me. I remembered then, that's why I stopped reading those sort of books. Stupid female main characters. I am trying to not buy any more books. Because Amazon is swamped, so some sell for .01 plus media mail. The big main library seldom has something I'm looking for. Even in the non-fiction books. In that previous post 'on- what I am reading', Dawn was ok. The Rosetti Letter was a crash. Guess I will go get out my copy of 'Child Of The Morning', and read it again. Another of my favorite books that I take care to savor is: 'The Forgotten Beasts Of Eld'. Pure Poetry.
I am becoming very opinionated from being by myself so much. That's what happens when one is alone too much. Sometimes, I don't know who I am.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

WEDNESDAY

Hum, seems I have a thing about Wednesday. I mentioned that before. I just haven't felt up to anything for a few days. I'm restless. But, can't go anywhere. Actually, no where to go. I do small things that need to be done. We are going to try to sell our many ' years of collecting' Christmas ornaments. We used to have an 8 ft. tree. I use to spend a week decorating it. We always left it up until Valentine's Day. Then a week taking it down. But, we sold that one years ago. We only use some small trees now. I still have ornaments that were used on our family tree at home.
I have not been out to look, so, am not sure if Christmas stuff is out around here. Halloween is replacing Christmas now anyway. Why are people so enthralled and obsessed with gruesome, gah!!!!! Guess, times changed and I am not amused.
Halloween really was a sort of end of harvest ritual originally. It was demonized by very ignorant people during the dark ages of history.
The weekend, my Hb. found one good nectarine and one good peach. So, he used them to make a small fruit krumble. Tasty. The side affects were not too bad.
Where I live now, there are no children. So, I do rather miss the little trick or treaters. One year, I asked a few of them, what sort thing could they do for their treats. They were totally flummoxed. I asked, " can you sing, say a poem, do a dance??" "Nooo." I told them that, was my trick for them and passed out the candy. I gave everyone of those children, two pieces of candy each. I have oftened wondered what they told their parents about that strange lady, who asked them to sing for the candy.

Friday, October 5, 2007

DANCING TREES

I have been wanting to do a story about these trees. The three on the right in the picture. See, we caught one beginning to bow as she dances. They are a type of pine. Cedar perhaps. I haven't looked them up to identify correctly. But, I have this fantasy about them. To me they greatly resemble ladies in their most elegant finery. And they appear to dance. Especially in the wind. I think they dance, waltz, and twirl around. But, if you look straight at them, they are in position. But, Sometimes, I have the feeling if I look sideways out of the veriest corner of my eye. I can catch them unawares. About a mile away, is a park, that has about a dozen trees who dance there. A fantasy of fairytale trees. Of maybe I have watched too many Disney movies and read too much Fantasy/Scifi.
The cedar trees are the only ones who dance.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

MAGAZINES

Since I can't get out much anymore, my Hb. tries to find something to bring to me. He knows I like to read magazines. So he checks to see what he may find for me. And really, it is not that easy. He picked up a copy of the new Family Circle for me a couple of weeks ago. Well, I used to only buy the Winter Craft issues. They don't have those anymore. Turns out the mag. isn't half bad. Surprised me. I have some free subscriptions to House Beautiful and House and Garden, What a crappy waste of paper those magazines are. I can remember when they actually had something in them that was usable. since they are free, I look through them once and throw them away. Not even worth keeping for collage projects.
Went over to our Library and saw they had Woman's Day. So, I checked out a couple. Bleh! I used to always buy that magazine. I just haven't since the 80's. I was doing dolls and flowers , rather than crafts. WHO OR WHAT KILLED OFF CRAFTS!!??!! And sewing!!!!!!!!!
Whoever did, needs their head reworked. Maybe the same thinking that eliminated music and all the arts from our schools. I am not talking quilts here, I mean making one's clothes occaisionally. Being able to wear something no one else will ever have. Much better than over priced 'Designer Wear'.
Man, I digressed again. Drat.
Anyway Even my doll magazines are hard to find. Subscribe you say?, Well, no matter how good the magazine is. There are always four a year, that are not to my interest.
Oh, yeah, last year or the year before, I had a free subscrition to 'W'.
I hated that magazine. It is 'so' New York. Their editorial content is so surreal, You have no idea what they are selling.
The young people have no idea what they are missing. Crafts are such a great outlet to find one's self. Art creates brain gray matter. Enhances understanding and nurtures curiosity.
I also, used to buy: Victoria, Victorian Home, Romantic Homes. Oh yeah, Traditional Home. But, Martha Stewart ruined that magazine. I like Martha, but, she is not my style.

Monday, October 1, 2007

OCTOBER-1- WITH SUN

Well, this year October starts with a sunny day . Last year, it was cloudy, cold and wet.
I can only wonder what will be put on my plate this year. Life, says Auntie Mame, is a banquet. Well, no, it's more like a potluck buffet. But you can't make the choices. You take what you can get. That is the only choice.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

CUTE CARD

Dollhouse Dreams
I had a story about my childhood dollhouse on one of my other blogs. But, that site developed trouble so I dismantled it. Maybe I ought to post it here on this blog. Maybe I will in a month or so.
Anyway, I had always wanted a terrific dollhouse. A big one with real doll furniture. Not that 1/12th scale stuff. That hasn't any 'Play" value. It is only to look at. I much prefer "Toy" dollhouse furniture. Much more 'Play" value. You know, 'hands on'.
I never did get what I really wanted. More because out here, antique toy furniture is just not that available. I spent years scrounging for it. I have a very nice Solid silver game table I found in Vancouver, Can. Also, a set of four gold-leaf stenciled parlor chairs.
Since I never found the house I wished for, My Hb, and I built a rather nice large six room dollhouse out of extra heavy crating cardboard. Hum. Best save that for another time. I do rather tend to digress.
To try to appease my wish , I collected almost every book on antique dollhouses and furniture. I collected pictures and plans from craft magazines.
This picture of a greeting card with a huge Victorian dollhouse is just one of several in my stack.
Isn't it great. Now, I just enjoy looking at it. And I remember the five dollhouses I did have, but, have sold off now. All I have left, is my original childhood toy house.
What I do regret is that, somehow or other, I never took a photo of the big cardboard Tudor or the five-room hip-roof house. No, I am not teasing myself.
We have been selling off the furniture as best we can. It is very slow. People are buying tech stuff that always breaks. Then they have to buy a new piece. Seems very wasteful to me.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

REMEMBER SEPTEMBER

Try To Remember-

The theme song from 'The Fantastick's' is another of my favorite songs. I really like Ed Ames version. His voice is so beautiful it resonates with me. We saw the play when it was in the city long ago. It is a heart catcher. Jerry Orbach originated the main character, 'El Gallo', on Broadway. I don't know the year. We saw a road troupe.
---------------------------------------------------
Try to remember the kind of September
when life was slow and oh so mellow,
Try to remember the kind of September
when grass was green and grain was yellow.
Try to remember the kind of Septemember;
when you were a tender and callow fellow.
Try to remember and if you remember
then follow,
follow, follow etc.

Look up the song, on the internet. There are two more lovely verses. I am a bit hesitent to to do the entire lyrics. Because of copyrights.

Monday, September 24, 2007

SHOESTRING APPLES

Well, I showed you those lovely pink apples and they had developed an odd after taste. Kind of dry, and bitter. Maybe too much tannin. Well, my Hb. tried saute'ing them in a little corn oil, a touch of balsamic and a little sugar to balence. They came out nicely. We ate them as is. But, over ice cream would be tasty too. Also, this way they would be a very nice side dish with any pork entre. They are 'but deff' a cooking apple.
I'll bet Paula Deen would batter them and deep fry them. Did anyone see the episode where she and her sons, deep fried pieces of double chocolate Bundt cake!! WOW!!!!
Ten pounds just watching that show.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Thursday, September 20, 2007

TODAY

I thought I was not going to be bothered so much by stomache upsets. I lied. Although it could a combination. A week ago Sunday, my best friend called me and I couldn't talk. I was too sick.
And I have been sick all week. The weather cooled off. The weatherman says rain, but have not had any right here. We have also had to use the heater. It is usually October first . It's gonna be a c-o-o-l-d winter. I can tell. We have had a cool summer too.
Then, just as I thought I was ok. It hit again. My friend called-- again. Nope I was too sick. Well, Tuesday, She called, yes, I was ok.
We visited for two hours. It was wonderful. We are both sewing for our little fashion dolls. Her doll is a very special 8" smiling Bru ltd. ed. only available from the UFDC. My doll is a 9 1/2" F.G. fashion is of course, Eithne. I am going to send her some silk. I have lots, and it's hard for her to go out looking too. I'm such a fabriholic, I have stash from the 1970's.
My friend hasn't been able to blog, because her new computer is a lemon and refuses to be anything else.
My friend is the only doll person I have personal, (albeit, by internet), contact with.
But she is what I need.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

WINDS OF TIME



Today used to be my Dad's birthday. I try not to think too much about it.
The song I think of for him is: Oh, my Papa. No we are not Italian. But the song does resonate for me. Because to me, he was so very wonderful. He wished the best for me. And did his best.
He was honest, straightforward and uncomplicated. He was well liked by everyone who knew him or met him. He was a rare man, in as much as he never had any enemies. Ever.
Of course he wasn't perfect. Who is. He was a human being. I loved him as a Father and as a person.
I miss him every day.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY DADDY.
******************************
The fields of 'Always Summer'
where the blue cornflowers
forever grow,
The gentle air wafts the
fragrant daisies
And the scented pinks to and fro.
Everything we ever wanted,
everyone that we have known.
Are waiting there to greet us
now that time has flown.
Yes, in this place of 'always ever'.
In brightness, joy, and grace.
Is where we go, 'at end of day'.
T'is the place we abide
after the turmoil of this side.
Open meadows of grass and flowers,
Through which we dance,
celebrate and play.
Orchards full of trees in
both fruit and flower,
Create a glorious bower,
a setting for loving Greetings
of those we have missed,
They rejoice to see us,
at last in exquisite bliss.
----------------------------------------
For Mom and Dad

Saturday, September 15, 2007

SEWING FOR EITHNE

I seem to be much better lately. My IBS haas backed off. I am not sure if it's gone, or just a once in awhile thing. However, I am having more real time, and am always not quite so tired.
In any rate, I am seeing if I can make a sort if life again. I hope.
I very much want to dress this dear doll. She has a trunk, and I wish to provide some kind of trouseau for her. Right now there are four separate outfits in progress. I am also writing a story to go with her.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

SEPTEMBER-11-2001

My Dad's favorite toy was a "ROLY POLY". The bounce back man. No matter hard you tried to tip it over or knock it down. It always bobbed back upright. Ever optimistic and keeping on. We are a nation of 'such'.
Long may we wave.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

LITTLE ORPHANT DOLLY

I keep telling myself, "C, you do not need anymore dolls!!". My goodness, never thought I would ever reach that point. It is positively stupifing. What a Hoot. Oh, I'm still silly about dolls. I go through eBay everyday. And some other doll sites. Just to look. HAH.
In the past five years, I have purchased a doll a year. That is on top of the dolls my friend made for me and we did a swop thing, sort of.
This is the doll I had come home to me this month. She is 12" tall. A poor soiled little thing. And no, I am not going to wash her. It would ruin her value and provenance. I will just give her a good brushing with a soft brush. I think she originally had a bonnet or hat. Because she hasn't any yarn hair on the back of her head. I am pretty sure she was made from a pattern by Edith Flack Ackley. She quite well made too. The person who made her, was a good sewer and likely liked dolls.
I had only sort of leaned her up on the shelf and we took a pic. She is not drunk. Maybe just tired from her long trip across country. She hasn't a name. So I just call her: the Orphant doll.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

SMOKE AND FIRE

Our state has 6 fires going on. The one about 20 miles south and west of us, the wind is sending the smoke to our valley. We are also getting the smoke drifting from a fire three hours east. It is hard to breathe. And I have a headache because my head feels all muzzy. And I am tired of smelling ashes and smoke. None of them will be contained until sometime next week. Mountainous terrain is making it difficult. I absolutely despise wildfires.
This is my take on what the sky looked like around here. The red thing is the sun.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

WHAT I'M READING

These are three books I'm reading. Well, not at the same time. I have just finished Queen Of The Dawn. It is a story about Egypt during the Hyksos occupation. Dawn is the Princess Nefra, last of her line. But, a rallying point for her people. It's A Haggard book. For a man he is pretty good. I had a hard time tracking down a copy. The libraries do not have it. Took me serveral years.
The next book will be: The Rosetti Letter. Takes place in Venice Now and in the 17th. century. I hope it will have a good story. Sometimes even when I research, the book still turns out to be a flop.
The other book I have previously read, so it will the last.
Oh, yes, I am sewing on some doll outfits for Eithne too. I sew until my carpel tunnel is too much. Then I put on an elastic bandage on my hand and I read for awhile.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

MEMORIES OF SUMMER


GIFT FROM THE SEA

Sun and sand
Sea and sky,
Watch the seabirds
Wheel and fly.
Shells like jewels,
Strewn 'cross the strand.
I pick one up
to hold in my hand.
I can, but wonder,
at it's complex
Simple beauty.
-------------------
Orig. Art=copyright:CGZ 2004
Orig. Poem=copyright:CGZ 2004

Friday, August 31, 2007

USED TO BE*********

My cousin Lloyd emailed this to me today. It is one of those internet dealy-bobby things. But, it is so true. Don't you wish life was still simple? Cell, phones? As much as the over use disgusts me. You can be sure though, that my Mom would have given me one. They are a great security feature for modern times. They do not need to be a source of entertaiment.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Black and White
(Under age 40? You won't understand.)
You could hardly see for all the snow,
Spread the rabbit ears as far as they go.
Pull a chair up to the TV set,
"Good Night, David. Good Night, Chet."
---------------------------------------------------------
My Mom used to cut chicken, chop eggs and spread mayo on the same cutting board with the same knife and no bleach, but we didn't seem to get food poisoning.

My Mom used to defrost hamburger on the counter AND I used to eat it raw sometimes, too. Our school sandwiches were wrapped in wax paper in a brown paper bag, not in icepack coolers, but I can't remember getting e.coli

The term cell phone would have conjured up a phone in a jail cell, and a pager was the school PA system.

We all took gym, not PE.. and risked permanent injury with a pair of high top Ked's (only worn in gym)
instead of having cross-training athletic shoes with air cushion soles and built in light reflectors. I can't recall any injuries but they must have happened because they tell us how much safer we are now.
Flunking gym was not an option... even for stupid kids! I guess PE must be much harder than gym

Speaking of school, we all said prayers and sang the national anthem, and staying in detention after school caught all sorts of negative attention.

We must have had horribly damaged psyches. What an archaic health system we had then. Remember school nurses? Ours wore a hat and everything.

I thought that I was supposed to accomplish something before I was allowed to be proud of myself.

I just can't recall how bored we were without computers, Play Station, Nintendo, X-box or 270 digital TV cable stations.

Oh yeah... and where was the Benadryl and sterilization kit when I got that bee sting? I could have been killed!

We played 'king of the hill' on piles of gravel left on vacant construction sites, and when we got hurt, Mom pulled out the 48-cent bottle of Mercurochrome (kids liked it better because it didn't sting like iodine did) and then we got our butt spanked.

Now it's a trip to the emergency room, followed by a 10-day dose of a $49 bottle of antibiotics, and then Mom calls the attorney to sue the contractor for leaving a horribly vicious pile of gravel where it was such a threat.

We didn't act up at the neighbor's house either because if we did, we got our butt spanked there and then we got butt spanked again when we got home.

I recall Donny Reynolds from next door coming over and doing his tricks on the front stoop, just before he fell off. Little did his Mom know that she could have owned our house. Instead, she picked him up and swatted him for being such a goof. It was a neighborhood run amuck.

To top it off, not a single person I knew had ever been told that they were from a dysfunctional family. How could we possibly have known that?

We needed to get into group therapy and anger management classes? We were obviously so duped by so many societal ills, that we didn't even notice that the entire country wasn't taking Prozac! How did we ever survive?

LOVE TO ALL OF US WHO SHARED THIS ERA, AND TO ALL WHO DIDN'T- SORRY FOR WHAT YOU MISSED. I WOULDN'T TRADE IT FOR ANYTHING

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

AUGUST MOON

So, this month, two for the price of one.
I had already made this piece for
the August Moon theme, then
found out about the Eclipse.
Well, I put up the Eclipse last night,
and will put this one out tonight.
So, look at it this way, you have
a Blue moon, even there really wasn't one.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

ECLIPSE

Just in case those like me, slept
through this historic feature.
I created this impression, ahead of time,
when I saw it on the news.

Monday, August 27, 2007

FANTASY PEGASUS

I just keep finding things from my past that I had completely forgotten. Actually, I thought I may have dumped them long ago. Thank goodness, I hadn't. One item I rediscovered, is my Thesis-workbook from my Creative Stitchery class. That was my favorite class, was thaught by my favorrite instuctor: Anna Ballarian. I found all of my drawings I had made for future projects. Because, for class, I was only able to finish one project. A romantic style wall hanging. I will show it some other time. I'm not sure how I intended to use the Pegasus. Maybe a dresser scarf for my vanity dresser. A pillow, or just a small framed piece. Possibly embroidered on a garment. Definitely, an embroidered piece. I have at least 20 ideas in my workbook. Nice.

Friday, August 24, 2007

TEASET--TEMPEST


In my Blog last year. I wrote about my desire for a tea set. And that I never received one.
Well, I did finally have one. A miniature set, in porcelain with little flowers and gilt trim.
*******************************
The story is: My Dad went into partnership with this guy in Oregon, and Dad was trying to set up a Two X Four Mill up there in a small town called Drain. So, there were a lot of trips back and forth, building the mill. Organizing the running of the business and lining up buyers. All kinds of details.
There was the nicest Toy and Gift shop in a town we passed through. The town was Oakridge. The name of the little shop was; Cooper's Gift and Craft Shop. It was a small store, but carried lines of things I never knew about, or had only seen in magazines at Christmas. To Davey and I, it was kid heaven. After I discovered it. My brother and I always HAD to stop there. During one of stops, the shop had gotten in some exquisite Miniature tea sets. They were simply too precious. The spouts really poured. The Teapot is 1 1/2" tall. You might say they are in 2" to 1ft. scale. And NOW I needed to chose only one. Took me awhile. Finally Mom came in to see what was taking so long.
With her really good taste, helped with my final choice. Which means, I decided on the one she liked best. That is the one in the picture. We both realized, the tea set was Maribelle size (14"). I was absolutely delighted to finally have a tea set. And it was nice to buy it for my doll. The service was made in Japan. Printed in red.
We stopped there many times and Kid bro. and I bought a lot of toys and treasures. We saved up all of our allowance between trips, so we would have money to buy something special. Between us, we had quite a soft toy collection.
I will do a story or two later, on some of the neat things we found there.
--------------------------------------------------------------------
This was the summer after I had graduated from high school and before I went away to continue my education.
But, I played with my dolls and had tea parties with the new tea set anyway. That's what it was for, yes? My cousin Audrey was intrigued by the tiny set. I think she finally was able to talk my aunt and uncle into getting one for her too. Hers was Japanese too, but a different quality. I would have bought one like mine for her. but, Mom and Dad said that would be too expensive a gift. And I didn't have the enough allowance for another one. We had price limits for gifts. Especially between relatives
----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

STARSHINE

Here is one of my Photosuite Art Pieces.
It is from 2005.
I made a few pieces last year, however,
I have not made anything new this year.
I am into other ways of creating.
My paper journal and my first choice-dolls.

Monday, August 20, 2007

SEVENTEEN Magazine


In this week's Newsweek, there was a story about the new Editor of Seventeen magazine. I know she is only one in a long sequence of editors. But, it was interesting and brought up memories. Seventeen has been around since 1946. And in the story says it is a teen magazine that stays true tothe good girls. I very pleased to see that. To set a clean standard for the young girls to follow. Really nice to see that. Well what about it? Seventeen magazine helped me make it through High School. Thanks to the articles on social interaction. How to handle rude, mean and gossipy people. How to develope good manners and deportment. Ladies Home Journal was also a source of social behavior. I had been thinking about the magazine, because I have one copy I kept as a keepsake from my school days. I will end up putting in on eBay next year. But, now it takes me back. No, I was NOT popular in High school. I was too nice. If I found out a nasty trick was going to played. I would squelch it. (refer back to my entry on: Bullies) Gee, the prankters hated that. No, no one tried to prank me. So, I guess there may have been some respect there.
The modern Seventeen magazine is still there for the young ladies. With all the personal beauty advice on hair, makeup, clothes and being attractive. It did talk about that back then too. But, it was how to find your figure, hair color, hair type. How to discover your personal style. Always look your best, feel good about yourself. And how to be yourself and make the most of your life. Be the best person you can be. Make the most of your opportunities, and be nice. Now days, no one has manners. In fact they do not have any idea what that even means. (Whazat?) So, great going Seventeen, still sweet after all these years.
The clothes were always beautiful. I loved pretty clothes. This issuse is a fine example of the era. This is the December Christmas issue. Just full of fashions, Gifts, stories, and great articles.
Keep on trekking SEVENTEEN.