Monday, October 31, 2011

Trick or Treat

Hi everyone, it's me - - - Millie

My Momma dressed me all up today.   Don't I look pretty ??

Hmmm, wait a second - - I remember this orange dress

Gasp . . . . . I only wear it once a year . . .

It's that terrible night when creepy looking people bang on
the door for hours . . . .

Oh no - I'm gonna get a sore throat from all the barking I will have to do.

And even worse than all the banging and barking . . . .

Mommy gives treats away to all the little beggers

Hmmm, she always told me it was impolite to beg . . .

What's up with that, huh ??

Oh, Momma says to say . . .

P.S.  I hope no clowns come to the door or Momma's gonna freak

Sunday, October 30, 2011

An inside kind of day

It is totally the kind of day to stay inside and be comfy and cozy.  What I like to call a "special coffee" day.  Well, mine didn't look as pretty as this one but it sure tasted good.  (Note to self:  Buy more Baileys)

Just what you need when the temperature outside is barely above zero and the rain/snow mix is blowing horizontally at the windows.   Not nice at all.

Millie and I  spent the morning curled up on the sofa in front of the fireplace.  It didn't take long for her to scratch around at her blankets to make a little nest.  She loves to get in the middle of a nest.  What a sookie baby !

This is the kind of day she almost refuses to go outside.  I also finished hooking my little snowman guy and started planning the next little mat.  I definately enjoy doing the smaller projects.

 Supper is in the oven.  I am loving getting the fresh vegetables every week.  This weeks delivery consisted of red skinned potatoes, rutabaga, carrots, beets and parnsips.  I cut them all up in chunks to roast in the oven - glazed with maple syrup.   I can hardly wait until they are ready.

Mine are still in the oven but this is what it is supposed to look like....

With asparagus stuffed chicken breasts.    The smell is driving me crazy.  I'm surprised I'm still hungry because being trapped inside all day has put a dent in the halloween treat supply.   :)

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Small town blessings

There are so many wonderful things about living in a small town.  And my particular small town is pretty special.

As you know, it is not the spot on a map that makes a community - it is the people that make a place special.

This week we had an opportunity to be reminded of the great people who call this place home.  A very special Flash Mob happened the other day. 

Our local elementary school Principal  has been battling cancer for the past year and a half.   He is not only a wonderful educator, adored by children and parents alike, he is a friend of mine.

The schools Physical Education teacher is a cancer survivor and developed this idea.  He has been working with all the kids in the school all year, learning the words to the song "I Believe" and choreographing some dance moves. 

Thursday, the entire school - about 600 students, teachers and parents walked to Mr. Kelly's house and performed a Flash  Mob on his lawn.  He was able to come out on the front porch to watch.  I don't think there was a dry eye from anyone who witnessed this.  Many of the children held signs that said "Believe"  "We love you Mr. Kelly" etc.   There are multiple videos of this posted on facebook.  I cannot watch them without crying.  I am so proud of these people.  

This is just another example of what makes my small town so special.

I did try to post the video from my facebook  page to here but after several failed attempts I gave up.  I wish I could share it with you.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Good Grief !!

I think Courtney said it best in her comment on my last post


Don't bother to click on the link to Julia's new blog just yet

It has vanished . . . . . . . . . . AGAIN

It is starting to feel like a Where's Waldo kind of thing

As soon as I find our where Julia is I'll let you know. 

(This must be driving her crazy)  Heehee 

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Julia's back and starting over

Hi folks.  Julia just emailed me and it looks like her old blog has vanished into the blogisphere but she is not one to be detered.  No way - She has a brand new blog up and running already

Now, Julia has lost all her followers so please go to the new blog  and sign up again so you don't miss anything.

Julia's locked out

Hi everyone,  Just passing on a little information to help a fellow blogger.  I received an email last night from Julia  from the blog  Of Petals and Wool. 

She is locked out of her blogger account and can't access her blog.  Also she is unable to leave any comments on your blogs.  She is working on a solution and hopes to be back up really soon.   I will keep everyone posted.   Julia and I share a lot of common followers so this seemed to be the best way to get the word out.

Good luck Julia,  we can't wait until you are back.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Think Pink

For a minute this morning I thought I needed to get my eyes checked.  I reached into the mailbox to get the morning newspaper and it looked strange. 

As I pulled it out I noticed it was PINK.  Yes, I said pink.  Not the type - the paper.  As I read the front page I learned that it was in honor of October as Breast Cancer Awareness month.

I have to admit, it looked kind of cool.  And it was a good reminder for every woman to get their mammogram.   Coincidentally mine is scheduled for tomorrow.   About 7 years ago a rountine mammogram detected early breast cancer in Mom.  She was lucky.

It's not my favorite thing, but it's not the worst thing either.  I found this on the internet today and figured if you have to get your "girls" squished in a vice - you might as well find something amusing about it

Many women are afraid of their first mammogram, but
there is no need to worry. By taking a few minutes each
day for a week preceding the exam and doing the following
practice exercises, you will be totally prepared for the
test, and best of all, you can do these simple practice
exercises right in your home

Exercise 1:
Open your refrigerator door and insert one breast
between the door and the main box. Have one of your strongest
friends slam the door shut as hard as possible and lean on the
door for good measure. Hold that position for five seconds.
Repeat again in case the first time wasn't effective enough.

Exercise 2:
Visit your garage at 3 AM when the temperature of
the cement floor is just perfect.
Take off all your clothes and lie comfortably on the
floor with one breast wedged under the rear tire of the car.
Ask a friend to slowly back the car up until your breast is
sufficiently flattened and chilled. Turn over and repeat for
the other breast.

Exercise 3:
Invite a stranger into the room. Press the bookends
against one of your breasts. Smash the bookends together as
hard as you can. Set an appointment with the stranger to meet
next year and do it again.
Exercise 4

Don't forget Ladies - Gram your Mammies

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Proud as a peacock

Yep, I'm a little proud of myself tonight.  Since we last talked, I managed to get a lot of little pain-in-the-butt jobs scratched off my list.

I have been without my handyman lately.  Poor guy has had a serious health issue in the past few weeks and it looks like he is officially retired.  The doctor and wife have both laid down the law.  So, now I'm in a bit of a bind. 

There are lots of things I can do but not enough to keep this 100 year old house functioning.   So I supposed I will have to start auditioning new replacements.  Young and buff wouldn't hurt (heehee).  

He and his wife came for a brief visit today and he showed me a few things I needed to do in the basement before the weather turns colder.  This old house has a rock wall foundation and a mud floor basement, so you can imagine how much I LOVE going down there.  (Where the spiders live.....)   But I put on my big girl panties, went down (to where the spiders live), reached my hand in a few cobwebs (ewwww) and drained all the pipes to the outside water sources.  The last cobweb was a big one, so "find new handyman" is moving high up on the list of to-do's.

Then I tackled that pile of wool I was complaining about the other day.  I went to all the various household hiding places and dumped everything on the living room floor and started to sort.  I am too ashamed to show you the photo of the entire floor so this is just about 1/4 of the mess.

The last bag I looked in (of course) was the one I was looking for the other night.  So now that I had found all the wool, I put all the small leftover worms together in one hit 'n miss bag and the other pieces of un-cut wool are together, somewhat color sorted and stowed away in the bedroom. 

No excuses now, so I started to hook again.  Yay, it felt great.  And in only a very short time I managed to get this done

Doesn't he look happy ?  I should have half the background finished later tonight.  I wish I had the committment to hook a large rug, but for now I like doing the little ones.   Who knows, he might be a pillow soon.

As usual, the weekend has flow by much too quickly.   Lets hope the next 5 days fly by so another weekend will be here quickly.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

A gift and a mess

A few weeks ago I won a giveaway from Jacque at The Doodles of my Mind.   If you follow her blog you know that she makes the most beautiful quilts.   And now I have a little quilted piece of my own.

She calls it Sun Kissed and trust me - her work is perfect.  Here is my little sun kissed quilt.

Thank you Jacque.  I love it.   Well that is the gift part of this post.  Now for the mess......

My hooking supplies are a MESS.  Today I got out a piece of  burlap and drew out a little primitive snowman.  I figured I could hook the majority of it from the scrap bag.  I have little bags of wool (cut and un-cut) tucked all over this house.  I wasted so much time looking around for a certain bag with the right colors.    Arrrgh,  I need an extra room in this house.  I got so fed up looking that I gave up. 

But at least the pattern is drawn.  Maybe tomorrow I will have the patience to attempt to organize the wool.    When I win the lottery I will build myself a little studio.  (Yeah, keep dreamin Kim )
But for now it is like a treasure hunt to find stuff. 

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Time to fish or cut bait

I think I am at a crossroads with my rug hooking.  I can't seem to get going again. 

Things got busy and crazy around here and the hooking got pushed to the side for a few weeks.  Then another week passed and now it has been almost a month. 

I promised myself yesterday that I was going to work on the rug last night.   Didn't happen. 

I now am of the opinion that the problem is this particular rug.  It is too large and even when I hooked on it for an hour or so, it still looked like I had done nothing.    So today I debated my options.  For awhile I considered tweeking it to see if I could just finish half but that doesn't seem like it will work.

I still like the idea of the rug, but I just don't want to work on it now.  So I think I will just put it away.  I feel like working on a small something so I can feel like I am accomplishing.  The final result - I'm going to cut bait on this project.

I am willing to bet that in the middle of winter I will want to hook again with all these warm colors.

Today is was pouring rain and very chilly.  I couldn't seem to get warm today.  And poor little Millie actually had to be thrown outside.  She hates to get wet, so as soon as I open the door and it is raining, she tries to run back inside. 

She got soaked.  And then she got crabby.  And then she got spoiled.

Awww, how cute is she ??

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Wednesday Hodgepodge

Today I am participating for the first time in the Wednesday Hodgepodge hosted by Joyce - From This Side of the Pond.   Joyce posts some random questions for us to answer and learn a little more about each other.

1.  How do you typically react in a sudden extreme, pressure-filled crisis ?  Would we want you nearby in an emergency ?

Hmmm, well it depends.  If I am the only one around I can keep calm and take control of the situation, doing what has to be done.  Then I fall apart after it's over. 

2. Caramel apple  -  Caramel sundae  -  Caramel corn  - Caramel macchiato......of the four, which caramel treat would you choose ?

No brainer - Caramel Macchiato.  You all know I have a serious coffee problem.

3.  Is there such a thing as destiny ?

I'm going to say no.  I think there is a series a random events tied to a series of conscious choices.

4.  What's your favorite piece of furniture ?  I'm referring to something currently in your possession as opposed to something on your wish list.

I think that would be my grandmother's vanity.  It is in my bedroom and I sit in front of it every morning.  I think it is a piece of furniture I would take with me no matter where I go in the future.

5.  Wednesday night marks the start of the 2011 Baseball World Series.  Did you know ?  Do you care ? Will you be watching ?  Ever been to a professional baseball game ?  If you are not an American do you find the title "World Series" annoying or amusing ?

This applies to all professional sports -  I am a "Game 7" kind of gal.  That is the only time I will watch - when it comes down to the wire.  I have never been to a pro baseball game but one of the things on my Bucket List is to watch the Yankees play the Red Sox in Boston.

6.  One sound that takes me back to my childhood is _____________

Trains.  We lived (still do) near a set of railway tracks.  When I first moved away from home I couldn't sleep because it was so quiet.

7.  On average, once you've linked your hodgepodge post to mine, how many other participant blogs do you visit ?  Do you ever come back to the Hodgepodge later in the day or even the day after to read posts ?

I do pop back once or twice over the next few days to check things out.  I can't say I visit all the sites but I do try to visit the majority of them.  Isn't that the best part of these linky's - to find new blogs of interest that we might not normally discover.

8. Insert your own random thought here

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Getting reacquainted with my kitchen

I managed to get lots of rest this weekend.  I stayed in bed late both days.  Thank you for all your messages on my last post.  When I get tired I guess I get whiney.   So I took the advice and slowed down.  However, too much of doing nothing kind of gets on my nerves. 

I seemed to be drawn back to the kitchen.  I guess its true that when you are not feeling quite yourself you crave comfort foods. 

It wasn't so much that I was craving certain foods, but I have been so slack with the meals lately.  There has been a lot of toaster waffles and sandwiches lately.

So when I got home Friday night I re-introduced myself to the kitchen appliances.  I think they missed me :)   Friday's supper was stuffed chicken breast, brown rice and sauteed brussel sprouts.  The sprouts are not my favorite veggies but I had them so I cooked them.  I cooked them like Dr. Oz recommended and they kind of carmelized in the pan.  Not bad but normally I prefer them drowned in some kind of sauce.

Yesterday was coconut rice pudding (my favorite), beef and scalloped potatoes.  This morning I opened the freezer and the pie crusts were still in there.  Remember the apple pie that never was??  Those stupid pie crusts were mocking me so I made a quiche. 

I told Mom that I was making quiche for lunch and she curled up her face and announced "NO, I don't like that."   Well, it was already in the oven.  When we sat down to eat I told her it was Breakfast Pie.  She ate it and loved it.  I guess it's all in how you present it.  Lol  I also use this trick with yogurt - I tell her it is melted ice cream and she eats it.   Tricky but effective.  She can't afford to lose anymore weight so sometimes I have to be sneaky.
It was pretty good, if I do say so myself.  I used asparagus, mushroom and bacon with a blend of smokey cheddar and swiss cheese.

For tonight I have a pork tenderloin in the oven.  I feel like I am running out of meal ideas lately.  Does this ever happen to you?  You just get bored with the same old stuff all the time?

I think I need to learn to make more casserole type things.  It is not something we ever had here when I was growing up.  We were a meat and potatoes house.  My grandmother never made casseroles and neither did Mom.   I've been looking up lots of different recipes.  Next weekend might be a casserole weekend.   Any suggestions ?  What is your favorite casserole ? 

Friday, October 14, 2011

Finding my way

It has been a long couple of weeks.  There has been a lot going on in my life lately.

I have been managing to plod along but today I am tired.  I think everything is catching up with me and I am glad it is Friday and I have a couple of days to decompress.

One of the coping skills I developed as I learned to  live with Mom's Alzheimers was to compartmentalize certain problems.  I just couldn't deal with all the different things in the beginning that were coming at me every day.  Sometimes you just have to deal with the task at hand and put the feelings and emotions aside for awhile. 

I would just take certain things and mentally put them in a box.  And that is what I have been doing for a long time.  But lately I have been collecting a lot of those boxes. They are getting a little heavy. So I guess that means I need to deal with some of them, before they deal with me. 

I feel better just admitting that to myself.  It is OK to have these feelings.  It is OK  to take some time for yourself.   It is OK to stop pretending to be the energizer bunny.

Actually, I feel better already.   Have a great rain-free weekend.  I hope to get some more photos of the fall leaves before they all disappear.

Follow Friday

Today I am joining up with Java's Follow Friday linky

Happy Friday

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Good Morning - HA......

Some mornings start better than others.

This morning when the alarm went off, I must have been in a deep sleep and I think I was in the middle of a dream.  I woke up all confused and disoriented.

And to make matters worse I was hearing this terrible noise.  It took me a few seconds to figure it out.  It was a strange screeching noise and it was loud.

It sounded like someone was strangling a cat.

Nope it wasn't getting strangled.  Some darn cat was getting its freak on right out side my bedroom window.   O.M.G.......   Trust me, that is not a sound you want to wake up hearing.   Lol

Then I opened up my contact lense case, dumped it out and refilled it with solution.  Hmmmm, I started to think "this isn't right. . . . . ."  Good grief - I threw out my contacts.   (At this point I should have just gone back to bed).   So I managed to find both lenses but then I had no way to know which one was for which eye.  I did eenie, meenie, minee, mo and just stuck them in my eyes.

They didn't feel just right but I was so thrown off this morning I just assumed my eyes were dry and they would feel better in a few minutes.   I dressed, grabbed a coffee and left for work.  Once I started driving I knew something was wrong - I couldn't see right.  (great to be behind the wheel, right)

I had the lenses in the wrong eyes.  Uuughhh,  I got to work and took them out and switched eyes.  It was like a miracle -  I could see again.  

It was like Monday happened twice this week.  Tomorrow all I can say is TGIF.

(Don't I lead an exciting life ?  Hahahah)

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Random Wednesday

It is one of those days that a single themed coherent post is eluding me.  So you will have to put up with a random offering.

Have you heard about the big international Blackberry glitch??  All over today blackberry addicts were dealing with black screens and service interruptions.  Some of the people at work were actually twitching by the end of the day.

But not me !  For some reason mine is still working fine.  (Yes I just knocked on wood) 

Also my hometown has been over- run this week .............. with HOOKERS.  They are everywhere.  When I drove through downtown I saw several on the sidewalks and the street corners. 

Rug Hookers -  hundreds of them.  This week is the 4th Annual Fibre Arts Festival.  This is one of Deanne's babies.  You can read more about it here on Deanne Fitzpatrick's  blog   I'm looking forward to going to the Fibre Market on Friday, but I am going to put myself on a budget.  I haven't picked up my hook for about 3 weeks.  This might be a record.  I hope that a visit to the Fibre Market will push me forward.

Tonight was the weekly vegetable pick-up.  I wrote about it here.   The vegetables and the selection are amazing.  But I have lost my cooking mojo lately but I need to get my butt back in gear.  I'm kitchen lazy.   I wish I had the kitchen that they had in the Jetson's cartoon.  Remember that??

Wouldn't it be great to be able to just push a button on the wall and within seconds your supper pops out?    I think I would go crazy in those Automats.  That would be fun.

OK, that is enough of my random rambling for now. 

Monday, October 10, 2011

The Switch

This is one of last Fall's photos.  It has nothing to do with this post, but I didn't want to do a pic-less post.

Today was the traditional "switch" day.  It was time to switch out the seasonal clothes.

What a mess for awhile. Mountains of clothes piled up on the floors of all the bedrooms.  The washer and dryer were thumping since early morning.

All the cute shorts and T shirts are history for now and all the cozy, comfy sweaters are back on the shelves.

We kept busy all day and had leftovers to eat so it was nice not to have to cook - just microwave. 

Miss Millie was back to herself this morning, running around and begging for treats.   I think the sneaky culprits have learned their lesson about being too generous under the table.  There were quite a few barks, snorts and growls of protest during supper.  Millie is so funny when she is ticked off.  She is one little ball of attitude.

It's back to work tomorrow.  It is always so hard to get going the morning after a long weekend.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Thankful and Overindulgent

Thanksgiving dinner 2011 is now just a memory.  I had enough food prepared for all of you, but there were only 4 of us.  We ended up with an extra at the table.  One of Mom's friends plans fell through so I picked her up and brought her here.   It's a good thing I cook like my Grandmother
and prepare way more than I need. Lots of leftovers for tomorrow. (So Michelle, you can come over)

I didn't make the pie yet.  Yesterday a friend called after lunch and said she had the coffee pot on and a fresh bottle of Baileys.   So obviously sitting out visiting her on the deck took priority for a few hours. 
And when I got home another friend had dropped off a pumpkin pie and a pan of pumpkin squares with cream cheese icing.  I figured that was enough dessert for now.

That picture is pretty much the scene here.  We are all stuffed to the max.  But poor Millie is worst of all.  It would appear that some people at the table (not me) were sneaking treats under the table.
Miss Millie has been sick twice so far.  All her blankies are in the washer.
Poor little thing is lying here looking all sick and pathetic.  

Aside from that little glitch it was a wonderful thanksgiving.  I have so much to be thankful for - wonderful friends and family here and away.  I am especially thankful for the family members who were with me last week at a difficult time.
We shouldn't need a holiday to remind ourselves to be thankful.
It should be a daily mantra.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Thanksgiving equipment and a flashback

This is Thanksgiving weekend in Canada.  I think it is my favorite holiday.  Completely non commercial - just family, lots of food and beautiful autumn weather.

As the preparations get going for the big feast tomorrow, it's important to check out the necessary equipment.

First - the guest of honor
Next, and almost as important........

And lastly, the Thanksgiving pants........
Stretchy and with a drawstring (in case I over-indulge)

I want to share this Thanksgiving flashback with you.  Today I was thinking about my very first Thanksgiving on my own.  I was in my mid 20's and living and working in P.E.I.    For some reason, which I don't remember, I didn't go home that year and decided to invite some friends over and host the thanksgiving dinner. 

I had never cooked a whole chicken or turkey before but had seen it done.  It didn't look hard.  But when it came time to clean the bird I began to have second thoughts.  "I can't stick my hand up there".   I tried for a second and after gagging and being completely grossed out about touching all that yucky innards, I knew I was in trouble.

Hmmm, what to do, what to do........   Being the incredibly resourceful girl I am, I decided to spread open the legs and fill the cavity with water and then turn it upside down and shake it.  My hope was that all that "stuff" would just fall out.   Now, stop laughing - I really thought that would work!

OK so that didn't work.  I even briefly considered cooking it with the stuff inside but feared it might poison my guests.   Then I had a brilliant idea.  I had baked chocolate chip cookies the day before.  I put some on a plate and knocked on the door of the older couple who lived in the upstairs apartment.  After presenting them with this lovely plate of cookies (AKA a bribe), I embarrassingly asked them if they would clean my turkey.  Yes, it was a little humiliating but they thought it was hysterical.  And they very graciously did the dirty deed.

Oh, but it gets worse.  After the turkey was in the oven I started to get the vegetables ready.  I was attempting to cut this large turnip when the knife slipped.  The next thing I know is my finger is covered in blood - a really gusher.  I got all woozy and my knees got shaky.  I am squeamish with blood, especially my own and this was bad.   I got to the bathroom where I sat on the edge of the toilet, put my head between my knees and hung my hand over the sink under cold running water.  (yes the bathroom was THAT small - I didn't even have to stretch)   I kept thinking I had to get it together quick or my friends would arrive and find me passed out in a red puddle.   

I eventually  got the first aid kit and bandaged it up.  It really should have had some stitches, but the only thing worse than blood is stitches.  In case you are wondering, I didn't serve the turnip.  It looked a bit like a crime scene from CSI.   And of course it was my middle once it was all bandaged up it looked like I was constantly flipping somebody off.  Lol  Nice.....

So that was my very first Thanksgiving dinner.   Luckily, they have gotten better over the years.

Friday, October 7, 2011

More of Fall's Bounty

Here are a few more photos taken earlier this week as I was leaving the Annapolis Valley.  It is such a beautiful area, dotted with scenic farm lands, country markets and lots of memories.  I spent 4 years attending university in this special place.  And I think Fall is the best time of year to appreciate what it has to offer.

And it would be almost criminal to leave the Annapolis Valley without some apples.  I bought a bag of Ginger Golds, Honeycrisp, and of course MacIntosh.   My plan is to make  apple pie this weekend.  My grandmother made the best apple pie in the world.  Really, she did.   The pressure is on to re-create it.  I think it is pretty hard to screw up apple pie.  Well, I hope so anyway. 

This is Thanksgiving weekend in Canada.  Pumpkin and apple pies are tradition.  This year I do not want to eat store bought pies.    Look out - I'm strapping on the apron this weekend!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Some quiet time

It has been more than a week since I had a new post.  I have been blog absent but I hope to catch up with you all over the next few days.

In the middle of last week things went sideways.  I needed to take an unexpected trip, but that's all I am going to say about it.  Monday evening I needed to clear my head.  I left the hotel and found a short nature trail near a farmer's market.  It was just what I needed.