Friday, January 28, 2011

January Projects

These cold, snowy January days lend themselves to staying indoors and working on projects.

Although. or perhaps because, I started this past week with a visit from the Stomach Bug, I didn't have much energy or oomph to do anything too physical. So, instead I turned my mind to some projects that have been on my mind.
I've started to knit a little again. Here is the beginning of a scarf I'm making for a Pay It Forward I'm doing on Facebook.

Another of my Pay It Forward projects is this little scrapbook I made for a former exchange student from Germany. This is a little memento of our visit together.

I have an artificial evergreen tree that I keep on my porch in the summer. I have it decorated with woodsy things for the summer. For July 4th, I have some patriotic decorations and I have some Halloween decorations. I bring it in the house and add gold balls for Christmas. This year, I have decided to keep it in the dining room 'til spring. I found some fun hearts and traded them for the gold balls.

I'm going to look on the Bronner's Christmas Store website for snowmen for next January. I'm not home for St. Patrick's day, but plan to look for some Easter decorations for April.

I spent a day in my craft room working on cards and scrap booking. Here is a card I finished up and sent to my uncle who gets pretty lonely on these long, snowy winter days since my aunt passed away.

I spent a day in my craft room making some cards. Jim's brother and his wife for their 50th wedding anniversary.

One of my best friends from High School is having a significant birthday in a few days and I made this one for her. I must admit that after I sent this one, I bought one with a less sentimental message.

I also did some cooking yesterday. I planned to share the recipes with you, my friends in Blogland, but I'm running out of time right now. We are on our way to Pennsylvania in a few minutes. We will visit my precious mother in law and celebrate my brother in law's birthday as well as he and his wife's 50th wedding anniversary.

Rushing away, I say....

~Hippo Hugs~

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

I've Been Tagged

My very interesting blogging buddy, Lyn recently tagged me. Like her, I don't love these tags, but also like her, I haven't been tagged in a while, so here goes.

Here is how it goes:

1. Thank the person who tagged you and link to her blog. (Check)

2. Share eight things about yourself (Check)

3. Pay it forward to eight bloggers. (I'm not sure...give me a few minutes on this one.)

4. Contact those bloggers to tell them they have been chosen in this tag. (See 3.)

  1. Although it is hard for me to believe, I will have been retired six years on January 31st. I left my job as Library Director of our local public library just before my 60th birthday. Jim had already been retired from his teaching position for 2-1/2 years, and though I loved my job, I felt it was time to be free to spend time with him. We have really enjoyed our time together this past six years. The other day I remarked to him that every day I'm retired I love it more.
  2. I have a tattoo. It was my plan to get a tattoo on my 6oth birthday, but we were in DisneyWorld and they just don't have tattoo parlors there. My tattoo is a dragonfly on my ankle. Getting a tattoo was my way of thumbing my nose at old age.
  3. This sounds funny, following my tattoo disclosure, but I am an Evangelical Christian. Although I was raised in the church, I didn't really accept salvation through grace until I was 25 years old. The past 40 years, have been the best of my life. I am deeply aware of how I fail to live up to the name Christian, but I am so grateful for God's grace and mercy that keep me going and striving in this life.
  4. If I were to start over in a career I would choose Television Journalism. I think I would make a great anchorwoman or tv interviewer. What a great profession that would be. Can't you just see it now? The NBC Evening News with Anchorwoman, Pam Wolfanger.
  5. Jim and I have a Bucket List. We have accomplished many things on our list already. Some of the remaining things are: riding a zip line, white water rafting, take ballroom dance lessons, travel to Costa Rica, actually travelling to many places too numerous to list. I also want to own a Mini-Cooper and write a book about the town in which I grew up. And that's just a small portion of my list.
  6. At 66, I am the last member of my immediate family. My parents both passed away within a year of each other. My precious brother left this world in 1998 and I miss him every day. My sister died of lung cancer several years ago. It's hard to believe that I am the only one left. I am so wonderfully blessed with an in-law family who love me and treat me like a sister and daughter. When I hear people complain about their in-laws, I always take a minute to thank God for this wonderful family in which he placed me.
  7. I am one of the world's greatest procrastinators. I'd say more about that, but I think I'll wait awhile.
  8. I have a wonderful husband and children. I am so proud of my daughters. They are both bright, outgoing and caring women who make me happy to be their mother. My son-in-law is a joy to me. What a kind and thoughtful man. He kind of reminds me of the girls' father, my precious husband of 42 years.

Okay, if I were going to send this to eight people, they would be:

  • Cheryl, whose blogs always inspire me to write more. I always think how proud her mother must be of her.
  • Fay, whose strong faith encourages me.
  • Dagmar, who is one of the most creative bloggers I've met so far. Her blog is just beautiful.
  • Patti, Oh Patti, you are precious.
  • Tracy, my creative and delightful next door neighbor.
  • Chrissy, who I love like a daughter and always makes me laugh.
  • Midlife Mom, whose faith and joy amaze me.
  • Pam, who I identify with.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

January Musings

We're almost to the middle of January and the clothing experiment goes on. I haven't posted any pictures these past few days as I have mostly been hanging out in my jeans.

We did go to New Jersey this past weekend to celebrate LaVerne and Cathy's first wedding anniversary but somehow my camera never made it out of the suitcase. We had a good time celebrating with LaVerne and Cathy's friends and family. They sure are happy.

They did all the food for the party themselves and I came home with a couple of great recipes. I plan to make Paul's bean dip for the Super Bowl party .....Okay here is my dilemma.....I am really trying to use proper grammar. So....the Super Bowl party we are going incorrect useage. I need to say the Super Bowl party to which we are going. And that sounds stilted, even though it is correct.

Okay, I had no intention of writing about this, but now that I've started my rant, let me continue. I am so bothered by the way people butcher grammar these days. I admit that I may have become a little obsessive, but at the same time people have become really, really lazy.

Some of the problem stems from the lack of teaching. No longer do children learn the parts of speech, diagram sentences, or even drill on spelling words. Whole Language has ruined the English language in my opinion.

I was reading a book by Mary Jane Clark in which I found this line: "What time do you need the papers by?" I screamed and threw the book on the hassock. My brother in law, sister in law and husband just laughed. They really think I'm losing it. But, I ask you, is it too much to expect writers and news reporters to use good grammar? If we can't look up to these people, then who?

Then there is the matter of your and you're. Even ads in the newspapers get that wrong now. Some of my Facebook friends, intelligent, educated people, don't seem to know the difference. It's enough to make me want to unfriend them.

Here and now I admit that I don't always get it right, but I am trying. Maybe I should thank all these people who hack away at the language I love. They really make me think.

Okay, the rant is over. I'm off to clean my upstairs and throw away all those size ten pieces of clothing that I will never wear again. Wonder where the trash can is at?

Put your heart, mind, intellect,
and souleven to your smallest acts.
This is the secret of success.
~Swami Sivananda~
~Hippo Hugs~

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Experiment - Day Two

On day two, I chose to wear my jeans, a snowman turtleneck and my red vest for lunch at the Olive Garden and our usual Tuesday movie.

I need to confess that this morning, I switched my black tee shirt for a second vest. Decided I might be a little chilly with just shirts. Other than that, I plan to stick to the plan.
Still only 12 items.

~Hippo Hugs~

Monday, January 3, 2011

Twelve for Thirty

Maybe it's because of the economy and so many people out of work, maybe it's the poverty and tragedy in Haiti and other parts of the world, maybe it's just my age, but I have been thinking a lot about excess this past year. I look at all we have and all we actually need and I see the chasm.

Jim and I talk a lot about paring down, hoeing out, getting rid of the excess. That is probably because we have emptied out both his parents' and my mother's homes and laughed at all the crazy things they kept. We don't want our daughters to say that about us.

Now, if any of you know me at all, you know that I have a huge weakness for clothes. This dates way back to my high school days and has probably grown with age. I just love clothes. I spend a lot of time thinking about what I'll wear where and how I will accessorize it.

A few months ago, I read an article in a magazine suggesting the experiment of choosing ten items of clothing and wearing just them for a month. I was intrigued by the idea and found myself thinking about it at odd moments of the day. Finally, I decided that I would like to give it a try....after the holidays.

Today is my first day. I have adapted the plan to suit me, just a little. I am doing Twelve for Thirty for the month of January. At this point, I must clarify that I have chosen twelve items of clothing and have not limited my accessories at all. I'm hoping to be so creative with accessorizing that no one will really notice my dearth of outfits.

So, join me, will you and see if the Clothes Horse can actually stick to the experiment?

Here are the twelve items I have chosen: black slacks, grey slacks, denim jeans, one white top with a screen print, one white turtleneck with snowmen, one plain white turtleneck, one black turtleneck, one black long sleeved tee, one long sleeved grey tee, one red vest, one black jacket.

Here I am on day one ready to spend the day with my friend Karen.

I need to add here that I did not count my workout clothes, or my house pants in the mix.

Stay tuned and see if I can actually do this.

Self confidence is the first

requisite to great undertakings.

~Samuel Johnson~

~Hippo Hugs~

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year - 2011

Okay, I have no excuse. I had good intentions to blog again when last I wrote here. I don't know what happened, but I just took a break....a very long one. I have missed all of you and am hoping I can become a good, steady blogger again.

In the meantime, I want to share this with you as you begin a New Year.

I Wish You Enough
Recently I overheard a father and daughter in their last moments together at the airport. They had announced the departure.
Standing near the security gate, they hugged and the father said, "I love you, and I wish you enough."
The daughter replied, "Dad, our life together has been more than enough. Your love is all I ever needed. I wish you enough, too, Dad."
They kissed and the daughter left. The father walked over to the window where I was seated. Standing there I could see he wanted and needed to cry. I tried not to intrude on his privacy, but he welcomed me in by asking, "Did you ever say good-bye to someone knowing it would be forever?"
"Yes, I have, '" I replied. "Forgive me for asking, but why is this a forever good-bye?".
"I am old, and she lives so far away. I have challenges ahead and the reality is..the next trip back will be for my funeral," he said.
"When you were saying good-bye, I heard you say, 'I wish you enough.' May I ask what that means?"
He began to smile. "That's a wish that has been handed down from other generations. My parents used to say it to everyone.." he paused a moment and looked up as if try to remember it in detail, and he smiled even more. "When we said, 'I wish you enough,' we were wanting the other person to have a life filled with just enough good things to sustain them." Then turning toward me, he shared the following as if he were reciting it from memory.
  • I wish you enough sun to keep your attitude bright no matter how gray the day may appear.
  • I wish you enough rain to appreciate the sun even more.
  • I wish you enough happiness to keep your spirit alive and everlasting.
  • I wish you enough pain so that even the smallest of joys in life may appear bigger.
  • I wish you enough gain to satisfy your wanting.
  • I wish you enough loss to appreciate all that you possess.
  • I wish you enough hellos to get you through the final good-bye.
He then began to cry and walked away.

They say it takes a minute to find a special person, an hour to appreciate them, a day to love them; but then an entire life to forget them.

Take time to live.

To all my friends and loved ones, I WISH YOU ENOUGH.