My Day at the Goodwill Stores

Guess what I did Saturday???  I went to the closest five Goodwill Stores in our area.  Believe it or not, there really are five close by.  Hubby knows where every Goodwill Store in the greater Phoenix area is located – as well as the Springfield, Missouri area and the Los Angeles County area.  He makes a habit of going at least weekly to the ones near wherever we may be.  He is a book collector.  He follows certain authors and tries to collect everything they have written.  We have about 850 hardback books, mostly first editions.   By the way, he also goes to libraries and used book stores. Unfortunately, when he finishes with one author, he finds another.  I don’t have any idea where this might end.  I’ll have to take a picture for another time.

Since we moved to Arizona, we just don’t have the room in the house for his books any longer.  So, we have set up tall book cases all along the garage walls.  Our garage looks like a library.  Right now he is reorganizing.  When we first moved in, they just went up on the shelves willy-nilly – so he has been out in the garage for several days now reassigning their positions and shelves.  It’s a good thing because he needs something to keep him busy.  We have been here almost a year and he’s finally getting to it.

Anyway, to make a short story interminably long – I decided I would go with him just to see what cute little treasures I could find.  I poured and poured through the household goodies and the dishes, wow, what fun it was.  I picked up a few items and I’m so super excited that I just have to show you.

I’m in the middle of preparing a cute little Valentine’s Day dinner table so you will see some of that in the pictures.

First of all, I found a red tablecloth and a white lace table-cloth to go over it.  I paid about $2.50 each and they are in perfect shape!  I think I just might do all my tablecloth shopping at the Goodwill.  Oh, such fun.

I don’t even know what the actual name of these three little glasses are.  They are long-stemmed, but for very tiny drinks of some sort.  I know I’m showing my ignorance here, but I’d love it if someone would tell me the proper names for these.  I just think they are so very cute.  They were 69 cents a piece!!!!!  I couldn’t pass them up.

Look at this beauty.  It was $1.99!  I couldn’t go wrong.

How about this adorable little scoop for 99 cents.

Isn’t it just the cutest little thing?

This was just too cute to pass up for $1.99.  Oh, by the way, you can see my two new tablecloths in this picture.

Here are my two favorite little treasures I found.  So very cute.

Lastly, I got this jar.  I don’t know what for, but I just liked it.  I know I can use it to something.

Can’t wait to go next week with Hubby to see what else I can find.  I think I’ve spoiled it for him.  He really enjoyed going off to the Goodwill without me.  I told him I certainly will not go every time.  I think that satisfied him.

Quilting!

I went to my sewing lesson the other day and had the very best time.  I decided to make a wall hanging and actually quilt it myself.  Now, I have made quilts in the past, but I’ve only sewn the pieces together and had someone else do the quilting.  Let me see if I can find a picture of one of them.

This is my first one, although I didn’t make it wide enough.

Here is a close up. I really like it.

I decided to make my wall hanging with my Christmas fabric because I have so much of it.  I bought it a few years ago, for what I can’t remember.  I  didn’t want to buy more fabric because I have been spending a little too much money lately on fun things.  Anyway, this will be great to try on since I consider it “free” material.

These are going to be the borders.

These are my cute little triangles for the hanging.

I took me forever to cut them because I was so afraid I would mess them up.

Here is my stack.  I have to sew them together into squares.  That’s my homework for this week.

Don’t worry, it will look good when I get it done – At least that’s what I tell myself.

I’ll keep you apprised of my progress.

I have big plans.  I’m hopeful that it turns out nice and I can make wall hangings for all the seasons and holidays.  I have the perfect place in my home to hang them.  I only hope that I get this done before next Christmas.

These are my partners in crime.  Wherever I am, they are.  Here, we are in the office/craft room.  The problem is that Sugar always wants to be under the sewing table.  They are such mama’s girls.

Have a great day!

It’s Only Fair

I’m not one to show partiality, believe me.  So, with that in mind –  Introducing Crizzly!

He will be my fifth great granddog.

Isn’t he adorable?

He is joining the family where adorable little Avicii (next picture) will be his sister.

 and here she is enjoying the rain.

I have a feeling they will get into much mischief together.

Congrats Abby and Ryan on your new addition!

I’m Wondering Why

I do a lot of blog reading.  I enjoy it.  I follow people who are amazing.  Some people are so talented, whether it be through their culinary skills, their decorating skills, craft ideas.  Some are so hard-working I can’t even keep up with them.  Because I am such a dog person I follow blogs about dogs and some written by dogs.  They just make me smile.

Today as I was blog hopping, I happened upon two different blogs in which each young mother lost her very young child to an incurable illness.  As I read each entry, I just cried and cried.  I couldn’t imagine their pain, nor did I really want to.  One thing struck me though – in both instances each mother spoke of feeling so blessed, even in their grief.  They were not bitter nor angry at God, in fact they each felt so grateful that their child was free from pain and sprouting their angel wings.  I saw their strength and it amazed me.  They saw the blessing in these little (too short) lives they had been given.

Then I went to Facebook.

Over and over there was entry after entry indicating how life just sucked!  Yes, really!  This and that happened  – woe is me, my life is awful.  Why me, over and over.  It’s so hard, etc.  I tell you, I was actually sick to my stomach.

So…

I’m wondering why.

Why do some stay positive through the worst that life has to offer and some see only the negative in every situation in their life.

Why?

 Of course there are as many answers as there are people, and I wouldn’t be so bold to answer that for anyone else but myself.  For me it’s a matter of getting out of my own way, recognizing the Christ presence within me and doing my best each day to live life from that point – NO MATTER WHAT SHOWS UP.  Interestingly enough, since I’ve been doing that, what’s been showing up has been pretty darn good.  Coincidence? I think not.

These little girls make me happy every day.

I guess it’s all in how we choose to greet each day.

Home Safe and Almost Sound


Finally home and back to normal – at least what I call normal.

First of all, we had a great time in California visiting family and relatives, notwithstanding the miserable head cold and sinus infection I was battling, and still am a little.  We stayed so busy that I just didn’t find the time to blog and to keep up with all the blogs I follow.  I didn’t know how much I would miss keeping up with my “friends.”

All in all, during our time in California we went to three Christmas parties, a play on New Year’s eve (It’s a Wonderful Life), several dinners out with friends and family, at least three “game” nights, a few lunches, mini trips, oh my I could go on and on but you get the picture.  Even little Sugar and Meeka were kept quite busy while staying with our granddogs, Luke, Goldie and Biscuit affectionately known as “Bizzy” because she is always in to something.  In fact, this will show you what I mean.

Here she is “bizzy” with a green pen. Look at her little paws all green.

Here she is after playing in the backyard.

Anyway, I believe out trip to California was a success.

I was so sick when we got home, it took me days to take down “Christmas” which I didn’t bother to do before we left.  

Enough of that.  Today is a new day and I’m feeling much better.  The new year has begun and as before – I know this year will be even better than the last, which I think might be hard to beat.  I always think that, and then I’m always surprised at how great life is.  I know it’s a matter of my attitude though.  I am in charge of making my life just as great as I want it to be.  

Don’t get me wrong, crappy stuff still happens, I still get in bad moods or angry at Hubby.  I just don’t stay there as long as I used to.  I don’t dwell on the crappy stuff.  At my age, I have certainly learned that it comes and goes and I don’t have any control over that.  What I do have control over is how I react to it or how I handle it.   I also choose to look at life through the eyes of my heart.  It makes for a beautiful world.  I don’t make New Year’s resolutions, but I an always making goals to feel better about myself.  Right now I’m working on accepting others and not judging.  To be honest, I’ve been working on it for awhile.  I thought I had the “non-judgment” thing down pat.  Wrong wrong wrong.  I’ve been judging all of those I see “judging.”  I have found myself getting angry and upset that everyone isn’t as non-judgmental as I am!!!  What a laugh, right?  Who do I think I am???  Talk about getting hit upside the head with a giant board!  Sometimes I crack myself up.  Oh well, it’s the journey, right?

I also have some other things lined up that I’m excited about.  I have another sewing lesson scheduled and I’m going to make a quilted wall hanging.  I’d really like to make one for each season and just use one or the other all year long.  I’m going to try to get better at cake decorating.  I don’t see that happening without going to more classes, but I haven’t set them up yet.  I’m also going to check back with the local elementary school and see if they are still considering me as a volunteer.  I think that would be so much fun.  Most importantly, I’m open to whatever might come my way.  I’m sure there is something I haven’t thought of doing.  Ah, the adventure of it all.  

I think I’ll just quit here and go have some fun catching up on all my blog buddies.  

I hope you all have a very happy, prosperous and blessed New Year. 

California Trip – so far

Safely arrived in California Thursday afternoon.  It has been non-stop ever since.

Thursday evening we went out for dinner with my sister and brother-in-law.  All of us enjoyed a delicious breakfast for dinner.  French toast with lots of peanut butter and syrup.  Yum, the only way to eat it.

On Friday, Hubby and I Christmas shopped, went “up the hill” to Hesperia to see son Darin’s and DIL Shannon’s new house that they had just moved into.  I should have taken pictures.  Lovely big beautiful house.  

We then went to the first of many Christmas parties.  It was an outdoor party with delicious looking food and a live band.  I say delicious “looking” because we were too cold to stay and had to leave before the food was served.  I heard later that the party went on into the wee hours of the morning and a good time was had by all.  Hubby and I were the “oldsters” at the party and just couldn’t handle the cool California night.  

Saturday, a little more shopping and then cooking in preparation for the Christmas party at my niece’s house.  This party was my sister’s family Christmas party.  Even though we are not immediate family, we are always invited.  Fortunately she has a beautiful big house that accommodates this huge family comfortably.  There were about 45 people who makes my sister’s immediate family – children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.  I can’t even begin to describe the food – pot luck – but I’ll try.

Beef enchiladas – macaroni and cheese with lobster – salads of many kinds – fried chicken strips – beans of all kinds – prime rib – potato cheese and ham casserole – manicotti – meatballs – buffalo chicken with cheese – baked potato chunks with blue cheese – apple betty – cake – candy – cookies – I’m sure I’ve forgotten something, but that was the gist of it.  Why oh why didn’t I get a picture of this spread??

The special guests were the three babies that were born during this past year.

Liam

Sophia

Gavin

and yes Santa!!! 

We had the best time playing the gift exchange game where one person opens a gift and the next person can “steal’ it or any other opened gift or take a new one, and so on.  You can only imagine 42 people playing this game, stealing, laughing, etc.  Great fun.

The tree was so festive and beautiful.

Sister and brother-in-law joined their grandchildren and Santa for a beautiful Christmas picture.

Yesterday we took time to organize all the toys that were donated by my son’s Speech and Debate class.  Son Dave is the teacher.  These toys will be distributed to less fortunate children.  What a blessing.  

Look who joined the picture.  That’s my great-grandson, Deegan and of course, my little Meeka had to jump in too.

We ended the evening at daughter Karla’s house.  Son-in-law Carlos BBQ’d –  which is always a treat.  He makes the very best Tri Tip on his BBQ.  I don’t think I’ve ever had any better.  We stayed quite late, just talking and catching up, listening to great music, laughing and just enjoying each other.  Granddaughter Katrina was also there.

That’s about it for the first few days in California.  Lot’s more to come!

Not Quite Wordless Wednesday

FINALLY RAINING IN SUNNY ARIZONA

LOVE WATCHING IT RAIN IN THE POOL

Baking! Great Grandchildren! Fun!

Thursday we are going to southern California to spend Christmas with our family.

Really looking forward to spending time with these little treasures.

 Great grandson, Deegan and great granddaughter, Leila.

Can life get any better than this?

Started baking today, made many many mini pumpkin loaves.

Got loads of them wrapped in foil and in the freezer.

The kitchen just kept getting messier and messier

Of course I need my stool to sit on when I get too exhausted to stand.

 Made dozens and dozens of cookies, chocolate chip, pumpkin spice, peanut butter, and sugar cookies

Oh the kitchen got messier and messier.

Well, everything is packed away.  The kitchen is all put back together.

California here we come!!!!!

Life is Good.

The Girls Christmas Photos

I wanted to take the girls to get their Christmas pictures taken this year, but it’s not going to happen before we leave for the Christmas holidays. So we will have to make due with last year’s photos. They are pretty adorable if I do say so myself.

Sugar and Meeka wish you the very best

of Christmas holidays ever.

 We used this picture of the two of them for our Christmas card.

Sugar Plum born 9-11-01 Age 10

Look at that sweet face!

Meeka born 5-20-03  Age 8

The little imp!

Don’t you think they look so cute in their Christmas collars mama made them?

I’m pretty sure Santa is coming to bring them lots of treats and toys.


Such a Good Napper

Such a good napper my little Meeka is.  

Ah, this feels so good!

What’s that? You want me to wake up?

Oh my gosh, look at the eye she is giving me.

Ah, never mind, I’m going back to sleep.

Yep, little Meeka is my definition of unconditional love.