Sunday, December 10, 2017

A Few Days of December

      Greetings my friends! I'm popping in to blogland and sharing my fiber optic Christmas tree. When I got home on Friday after dropping off packages at the p.o. I found that Megan had added a few items to the scene. I still had the hood over my head that's attached to my cozy red sweater. It's been chilly once the late afternoon comes round. Freezing the last few nights.  Today was the first time in days that Phil and I have gone on a walk. Warm with sun mid afternoon in spots. Thankful for gloves, hat and cozy coat for walking.
  Phil is getting the big tree from garage tomorrow and set it up in living room. It already has lights on it. He's got a few vacation days from work. I had one last Thursday.  He's had a cold virus for a week and I don't like asking him to even put outdoor net lights on the rhody bush. I'm working on Christmas cards and calendars. Seeking out a few more gifts. Nearly done there.

 Yesterday I was looking for a cookie recipe from 3 of these books. Couldn't find it. Wait...Megan's another one. I'd had that hidden in the pile.  Yep. It was there. The malted milk cookie recipe yields 18 cookies. Mmmmm..... But decided to make a batch and a half of another cookie recipe. Nope..another time.
      My go to recipe of ranger cookies is what I made.  I used triple chocolate chips I'd found at a very low price. Half the batch is for a high school lunch at our church this week. Another portion is in our cookie jar beside dark chocolate star cookies from Trader Joe's. Rest Ziploc bagged and into deep freezer. Hope to make a batch of fudge for Phil's toastmasters meeting this week. They're doing a white elephant gift exchange. Just feel like making it for them. Next week I'll make some for my Christmas work party.
 This evening I went a women's ornament exchange at church. Lots of good food and talking with friends while eating. A nice program of singing songs and a devotional and prayer. I'd gone downstairs to use the restroom before the program started. I heard singing begin before I opened the door. Once I got into the hallway I just stopped and listened 🎶 to the beautiful singing til the song was over! Awesome praises sang at this Christmas/advent time of year. Then we exchanged ornaments that were wrapped beautifully. Passed right.....left.....left...right.....right.....right...when those words were read from story of Jesus's birth. Funny and're too fast. The ornaments get stalled in one area....then we finally keep the right one we are holding! I nearly didn't go but glad I did. The ornament above is the one I brought home. I missed seeing two ladies there this year. Both died in Jan and one just last week. It was good to see the coffee shop at our church full of woman having fun and being an encourager at Christmas time. This room holds classes as well.
     Last but least are caramel MnMs on our kitchen counter. So good and finally had get two bags into this jar that was sitting empty on a shelf. Fill me up, it said to me! I like canning jars especially ones with a design on it. I really don't need any more as I have so many!
     Christmas is two weeks away as of Monday?!?! Really and why did I dawdle this year? I'm not going to stress myself out about it. Thanks much for your kind comments. People leaving no name and/or anonymous won't get posted. Sorry! Follow my blog. I'd love to see where you're living and if you have a blog, I'll even go visit your blog. Also are any of you comment friends intersted in winning a photo 2018 calendar later? Let me know as one will be available late December to win. Have a blessed and safe week and enjoy this Christmas season.
   "Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel, which is translated, 'God with us.' "
 Matthew 1:23

Monday, December 4, 2017

Tis beginning to look

 Like Christmas at work. We got smaller beverage coolers at work since a shuffle of cash wrap happens later this month. Our store is expanding a bit. Exciting and stressful, in some aspects. I'll update you when it happens.
   Today was busy and I'm sit and veg out for awhile after dinner. Crockpot chicken with leftover cranberry sauce from Thanksgiving and finger potatoes Megan made last week for a potluck dinner. So yummy! Chilly day 34 degrees when I got a bit after 8 a.m. 38 degrees at 7 p.m. Can I say bbrrr?!  It's fine as it's warm in here with and sweatshirts.
   I grumbled at myself for goofing off for awhile Sunday afternoon instead of hemming the dining room curtains. I waited til 10. Got one pinned and sewn. Second will be done tonight. Good idea to hold panels together. Are they the same length? No. Panel that I'd hemmed was 1/4 inch longer than pinned one. Sigh. I'm thankful I listened to my gut instinct. Check first or you could be sorry. Tearing out a hem is no fun! I'm thankful I remembered how to load the bobbin on my Bernina machine. It's been awhile. The color of curtains I liked didn't come in the shorter version. I cut off 15 inches. Think maybe I'll use left over fabric to make a bag with fabric lining...a purse? The silver goes well with the walls and my photography. Needed to buy a different rod as well. Good thing Kohls had a good sale. Wal-Mart had too many choices for rods. But I finally picked one.

   Last Friday, Megan and I stopped in at Edward Jones office for a Christmas open house. Lots of goodies. Afterwards we went shopping in Canby then blocks away we waited for Christmas parade and tree lighting to start. All those photos are on my camera. These 📷 are off my phone. I'll share soon. I get behind in my posts. Hard to keep with all that life presents to me. That's why I had to say no to a few things coming up next year at church. Phil and I figured out our schedules for teaching and greeters. I cannot do it all. By the time weekend comes around I get tired from 4 days of work. No choice but to work. Am thankful I can still work.
Christmas season's upon us. I pulled out one of my Christmas mugs for tea at Sunday lunch. Washed it and enjoyed delicious tea my girlfriend brought me back from France. I washed up the other mugs and put away some regular used mugs for now. I've enjoyed the cards we've been getting slowly through the mail. We got 3 today. I need to address ours and write up a letter. Busy, interesting year.
  I best move on to sewing and put laundry away. Never ceases what a day has in store for us to do. Ordinary and then oh goodness. What do you mean that another friend dies of an apparent heart attack? Yes and with no warning Tammie G died Thurs. Unreal and we all try to make sense of it.  We were in homeschool group together. Hard to lose someone so close to the holidays. A memorial service on Sat. Sometimes I just don't want to go.
   God help us in times of need, stress, grief, confusion, brokenness, sickness.......what else can you add to this list? But" His mercies are new every morning. Great is his faithfulness. The Lord is my portion says my soul, therefore I will hope in him........" Lamentations of many scriptures that comes to mind in times like this. I cannot fathom my life without God. He is my only hope! 
     Have a blessed week!

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Landscape: Week 39 Photo Challenge

Summer time in Oregon is fields of wheat, bent grass, rye grass, berries, peaches, apples, pears, etc.  Late summer is harvest time. I've seen bales of hay and rarely get a chance to photograph them. But in August, I was with my friend, Beth. We had gone to check in with our friend, Laura, who was battling a brain tumor that re-appeared! On our way back, we got stopped in traffic outside of Albany. on the interstate. There was a traffic accident so we crept along and stopped, crept a few more feet!  Here was the chance for me to get my camera out and finally photograph two big stacks of hay! Beth was driving, not me!  :-}
We had a good visit together, talking, about what we'd been doing. Beth was flying to France the following weekend so there was talk of places she was planning to visit. Little did we know it was the last time we'd see Laura alive. She died 3 weeks and 3 days later. One year exactly to the day her sister, Karen, died. Of cancer! Interesting, huh? Beth came back the night before Laura's memorial Sept 24. Good thing she didn't have to reschedule her flight itinerary. 
Here we are in May after we went out for lunch, per Laura's request. We'd not gotten together for our February birthdays because I was sick with a virus. Laura, Beth and me (in the middle). So thankful for our friendship over the years!
After we prayed for Laura and said our goodbye's we drove over to our friend's fruit stand. 

Here we are together with Sheri and our items we are purchasing. I have two heads of purple cabbage. They were on sale, buy one get one eclipse special. Purple moon....! Why not! It was coming up the following week! I gave one away to my co-worker as there wasn't a chance we'd eat all that so soon! I never have enough time to get peaches. I did get some suncrest peaches which are some of my favorites.

I like this windmill across the fence from the fruit stand. Can you see the birds? Love going back to our home town to see friends and enjoy the surrounding farm roads and the beauty. I was there for a quick trip in early November. But that's another story!
What has been your favorite photo challenge photo? 

Sunday, November 26, 2017

My Black Friday Events

I'm not a black Friday shopper who goes to stores with deals and crowding people. Instead Megan and I left town late Fri morning.  We went to the Willamette heritage center that features the Thomas Kay woolen mill, which was built in 1896. She wanted to see the featured exhibit about Salem Fire dept...celebration of 160 yrs of service. We went on a guided tour thru the woolen mill first. Just the docent and the two of us. No crowds. I've been there a couple times but never on a complete tour. I learned a few new things about the mill.  It's amazing what the men went through to work on the wool. No OSHA back then. Can you imagine working with acid? No protection for the face and skin. Dye water dumped into the mill race that wound up in the Willamette river eventually? Loud machines that shook the floors. Life was so different then in the late 1800s. 
This mill made blankets and also uniforms for soldiers in WWI and WWII. World competition came into slowing sales here at the mill. More machines, less people in Europe led to closing this mill later on. Daughter and son in law of Thomas Kay started up a mill in Oregon City and Pendelton. The latter one is still in existence. Quite the story. 
The docent turned the lights on so we could see what they look like while working. Not as bright as all the fluorescent tube lighting. There were a lot of windows too.

After a short snack break in another building, we rode the elevator again. Megan unlocked the room where the Salem fire department exhibit was displayed.
November 1935 record book from Salem.

The first fire crew in Salem was in 1857.

Interesting display of photos and uniforms. A leather fire hose. A map of downtown Salem that's so different from now that was in a huge book made in California. Photos of when the capitol bldg caught fire and one fireman was killed in the line of duty when big white bricks fell down upon him. A rescue vehicle had his name on in as a memoriam to this young man who was a college student. I think he went to Willamette University, there in Salem.

A display outside in the hallway before we went into the elevator . Woman's Home 
Companion, March 1943, 25 cents.  My mom would have been 19 years old then. 
It would have been interesting to see the inside of the magazine. Nope, didn't want to break the glass. 

Nice sign outside a yarn store downstairs. I perused the store and found some lovely yarn. None on sale that jumped into my hands. Some I'd like to have. I need to work on my stash first. No sales to me there either!

Before we left home, I sent a hint to my husband from a flyer I had with me. I'd like this for Christmas and it's on sale til Sat. Will see if it shows up underneath the Christmas tree this year. I have heard many good things about this item. My daughter-in-law has one and really likes it. If I do get one, then the other two crock pots will be gone. Only so much room on my shelves. 
I thought about buying it myself but didn't even make it to Fred Meyer as the tour was longer than I thought. So we ate a quick lunch at Subway then went to Trader Joes for groceries and came home. The back roads are a good alternative during this time of year when one gets off close to the mall. These roads are so lovely while winding through the countryside! 

We've walked through many leaves this fall. These were our red carpet on Thanksgiving afternoon, a few blocks away from us. 

And an event that reminds me of this red color is no fire that happened at our house on Friday evening. I was cooking dinner on our gas cook stove. Everything fine. Walked away for about 3 minutes and came back when there was an awful, none gas odor that was horrific! Two of 4 burners were on and noise like a pilot light when you first turn it on was questionable! Burners that were on were not right either!!!! All burners dials were like I'd left them...on correctly!!! No rotten egg smell. Megan called the fire dept once we shut it off and left the house. I'd grabbed my purse but my phone left on the table. Oh well... They tested for gas/carbon monoxide and nothing bad. But head fireman said he smelled something weird when he came in. Gas company was called, arrived, shut off our gas after I did a bit of dishes and Megan took a quick shower. {Why we didn't do it earlier is beyond me. We were tired!} They called to see if someone could come out that night instead a.m. Over an hour later the other gas man came, tested again, both appliances...everything good! So he turned the gas back on!  He said there's many things that happen and best it get checked out. He's got many stories. I was exhausted by the time it was all over. Adrenaline will do that to ya.....long day, good day, thank you God for your protection. Thankful for friendly fire fighters and gas company workers who care and show up to help out! Ya just never know if you don't  stop it before something actually happens. We did get dinner finished after the firemen left. Nothing exploded!!!

This afternoon after church we went down to Salem and ate at Olive Garden. Used one of our gift cards from our anniversary. Oh so good! Phil was kind enough to drive over to Big Lots so I could shop. I got a few items. While walking to the restroom I had to go through the furniture section. Many recliners. I set on a couple. Oh so cozy! Made in America by Simmons. Under $300!!! I talked with one of the furniture men and he gave me colors and size {width} and just may get one later. Both of ours are used and mine is getting less cozy! Will see!

Have a blessed week and thanks for stopping in to read and comment on my blog posts. 

"Enter His gates with thanksgiving; go into His courts with praise. 
Give thanks to Him and praise His name." Psalm 100:4

Sunday, November 19, 2017

City-scape: Week 38 Photo Challenge

Even though city scapes are high up, I figured ground level would work as well. I was downtown Salem on a weekend afternoon. Waited for cars to appear. Even a motorcycle appeared. The brick bldg to the left is Masonic Temple, built in 1912. Terra cotta is used for the exterior decoration of the building. It's known as the Franklin bldg and recently been remodeled. It contains offices and there's a ballroom on the sixth floor. {information from}

The reason I was down in Salem was to hear Jane Kirkpatrick speak about her latest book, "All She Left Behind". She does alot of research and many people help her find material for the historical fiction books she writes. Megan went with me. Here we are with her and my friend Becky, who's one of my customers at the hardware store where I work. She said "we have more in common than our first names!" after we saw each other after the talk!

I purchased both of these books. Top one for my friend Laura. Little did I know I'd be giving it to her family at her memorial service in Sept. She died the following Monday after this event. Bottom book has now already been read by Megan. I'll get to it soon! Both were signed by Jane.  I've met up with Jane over the years and we enjoy our little chats together.

Megan won these items as a door prize. I have the book myself. It's a great book to read. 
Nice bar of soap too!
I liked this sign in the room where the speaking event took place.  

We were in the building next door to the Salem First United Methodist Church. The church was built 1871-1878. An interesting story why this was built. Depression in the nation and other instances created a long build time. The building we were in formerly was the historic Salem Elks lodge. It was purchased by the church in 1992 or 1993. It was renamed MICAH (Methodist Inner-City Activities House). The building features a youth center, UMC archives and an area for informal worship services. That's the part we were in.(Wikipedia info).

We wandered back down the street to our car. I stopped to take a few photos for city scape and this one was one of them. Megan being a pedestrian on her cell phone. On the sidewalk. It didn't make the cut. I had too many choices!

The Grand Theater, also featured in first photo, is part of a complex of historic buildings in downtown Salem. It was originally owned by the I.O.O.F and listed on the national register of historical places. It's listed as the Chemeketa Lodge No. 1, Odd Fellows Building...also known as the I.O.O.F. Temple. Built in 1900 as a lodge hall and opera house. John Philip Sousa performed at the grand opening on Nov. 29, 1900. The theater serves as a film and music venue in this era. (Statistics found on Wikipedia).

Now it's the week of Thanksgiving. Nothing much going on but staying warm and getting things ready for the holidays. I am gonna fire up my printer and get photos printed for calendars. I've gotten behind and it's just annoying to me that I do this to myself. Sometimes I just feel lazy and don't want to do anything. Work. Housework, which sometimes gets way laid. I must get going and keeping up or I'll forever be behind on everything! But I will be joyful anyway! 
 The Lord is my strength and shield!  (Psalm 28:7) 
Rejoice in the Lord always, again I say rejoice! (Philippians 4:4)

Have a great week and enjoy your holiday week here in the USA.....Thanksgiving! No black Friday madness shopping for me. Staying away from the malls! How about you?
God's blessings and hugs!!

Friday, November 17, 2017

Fri-Day and Me

Good morning!  November's chilly and rainy and windy here in our part of Oregon. Three out of four days of work have been busy this week. Megan's on her second day of work at Subway. Aced her food handlers test. Works in the prep area right now. She'll be making sandwiches soon. It's hair cut day for me. My bangs are way too long. I trim them a couple times. Third time I go and get it all trimmed. At least this time I'm not losing lots of 💇 hair . Dry weather and keeping up conditioners helped a lot. Whew...thought I was going bald for awhile earlier this year!
  Today I'm putting out my new kitchen rug I bought the other week. My other one is falling apart.
  Thanksgiving items will be gathered today. Again we got holiday meal coupon from work. It's redeemed at a local grocery store. We enjoy it every year. Take care and God's blessings to one and all!  I'll be back with you soon with more stories and photos!

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Reflection: Week 37 Photo Challenge

 We went to a wedding in August near Wilamina. While waiting for the ceremony to start, I shot a photo of my newly purchased sunglasses with a reflection in them. Goes well with the skirt I wore that day. I was happy to find a pair of  purple sunglasses finally that would look good on me! Trust me, I don't wear it on my knee! {HA!}

 While we were going to our seats, I decided to have a look around the area at the venue. A nice canoe by the river. Yes, the newlyweds had a photo taken in it later. Water level was low as you can tell. It was a hot, dry summer. Opposite of our cold winter.
 Lovely begonias in the shade!
 A restful spot that's so inviting!
 The bride, Quanah, and her dad at the beginning of the ceremony.
 While we were waiting to leave our seats, a grasshopper flew onto Megan's purse!
 Everyone signed their names on the leaves of the trees. I really like this idea. A nice piece to remember their wedding day, hanging on a wall in their home.
 A boutonniere in a shot gun shell casing! 
 I'm eating a cheeseball with crab meat in it. It was so good!
 Lovely hydrangeas!
 Jars with babies' breath in them lined the way to the altar. The chairs were moved for the reception.

 The newlyweds, Quanah and Wesley with the maid of honor, a friend of many years and best man is Wesley's brother. I wasn't able to get all the attendants together but it's ok! 
When I went to the car to grab my jeans, before heading home, I saw the newlywed car being decorated! It wasn't too bad! 

I am trying to stay caught up on my photo challenge. I'm almost a month behind! I hope you are enjoying the challenge photos!

I'm feeling better, my throat is still bothering me but will keep gargling and sleeping well. My throat didn't hurt as much teaching Sunday school today as last week. Sang too loud earlier I'm thinking! I did stay home on Thursday and didn't do very much. Megan did get the job at Subway and she's going to get trained sometime this week. Thanks so much for your comments and prayers. 
I can't believe Thanksgiving is so close.....little over a week away! We're getting together with family on the weekend!
Have a great week!

"Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the 
purpose of the Lord that will be established." 
Proverbs 19:21