Monday, January 30, 2012

Recovery and Recreation

As most of you already know, I miscarried a week and a half ago. I have been recovering, and thankfully, work has been slow, so Dale has been home. He is back to work today, so I am flying solo today, and getting back into the groove of things.

While I have been recovering, the camera has caught several fun moments.

Isaac has been going through a Dr. Suess phase, where that is all he wants read. Esther has been his favorite reader. So, she has become quite adept at "Marvin K. Mooney, will you Please Go Now?", "Green Eggs And Ham", "The Foot Book", and "Ten Apples Up on Top". Isaac also loves "Fox in Sox" but for some reason Esther still has trouble with that one! When Benjamin was little he liked much of the same reading, and at one point I had "Fox and Sox" memorized. That was a long time ago, and I don't remember much of it now.

Isaac has found a new hiding place. The hamper really is never empty!

After a few days of bed rest I was able to get up and do some sewing. I finally finished Benjamin's bathrobe. He is happy to have it, and only found one pin I accidentally left behind.

At some point Esther wanted to make a cake and frost it. Well, the girl has frosting issues, I'm sorry to say. It ended up kind of runny, so she named the cake "Splatter Cake". I think the reason is obvious enough.

Jerusha had her 7th birthday, and though I was more of a participant than coordinator, it was still special for her. The kids pitched in and decorated, and made cupcakes, as the birthday girl wanted to do "decorate your own" cupcakes. Thankfully, her gifts were already purchased ahead of time, and I wrapped them in quick order.

She LOVES Fancy Nancy, so most of what she received was of that brand.

A Fancy Nancy Book and doggie from Grandma...

A Fancy Nancy Dress I found on Ebay....

Also, I got her a party shawl for her Fancy Nancy Doll, also found on eBay, but forgot to take a pic. Oops!

Needless to say, her birthday was a hit!

I've also been working on a little sweater for Jerusha. It occurred to me that I've never knitted anything for her, and I found a pattern that looked doable, and decided to just knit it up for her. I let her pick out her own yarn, presenting her with choices of the correct weight yarn. Big mistake. I knew she was going to pick a pink, but I didn't think she would pick the most blinding, bright, mind bending pink she could find. I tried to steer her to something a little more subtle, but she wasn't going for it. I ended up with Caron Simply Soft in "Watermelon". Watermelon? Ha! I've never seen any watermelons this color. If you are on Ravelry, the project is titled "Sunglasses Required". The pics really do not do the color justice. Hard to believe, but trust me, it really is brighter in person.

I've frogged out the Kindle Cozy. I just wasn't happy with the feel of the yarn. I am making progress on Josiah's socks, though. I just turned the heel and am starting the gusset. Jerusha's sweater has been getting the bulk of my attention as it is very easy knitting so far. Plus, Josiah already has a couple of hand knitted items from Mama, and Jerusha has nothing. I guess it is guilt knitting, but still very enjoyable.

My quilting passion has flared up, as I know from experience it is good therapy. :) I have a baby quilt ready to be quilted, started last fall for a friend who is expecting in March. I also continued working on a quilt for Caleb, as his previous one is almost loved literally to death! I am doing a disappearing nine patch design, eclectic, not organized at all.

I've also joined a free Block of the Month, taught by Amy Gibson on I am encouraging Esther to work through the course with me as it will teach many quilting techniques. A good refresher for me, and a good teaching tool for her. I've printed up the materials list, though we are doing a scrappy version of the sampler quilt. January and February instructions are up, printable directions, and video tutorials, which I find very helpful. I will post pics of the blocks as we get them done. :)

That is about it for now! Hope you all have a wonderful day.


Monday, January 16, 2012

Of Baking, Crafting, and Homemaking

It is another day of winter here! We hit at least -7 degrees overnight, and by 8 a.m., we were up to a whopping 0 degrees. By lunch we hit 30, which felt like a heat wave.

There really isn't anything remarkable going on here. This morning we spent some time catching up on some cleaning that never got done over the weekend. We also have been prepping for quarterly reports which means making sure scores are recorded in every one's weekly logs, and the logs filled out, put in chronological order, and given to me for my records. This week I will go through all the second quarter logs and do up the grades. Hopefully, this will be much easier than the first quarter. That was a miserable experience, to be sure!

Even though our life is pretty tame and routine, that doesn't mean I can't find points of interest and enjoyment during the day. For example, when Isaac first wakes up he is very snuggly. I love that first 20 minutes or so when he just wants to snuggle up in my lap with his juice, and wake up gradually, gently. This morning he seemed to require more time than usual. Maybe it was because he was up earlier than his regular time. Or maybe because it was a tad cooler in the house than normal. Whatever the cause, we had a nice, long, snuggle session. When he wanted "down" I let him. He got involved playing so I went into my room to make the bed and start folding laundry.

When I make the bed I throw our pillows on a chair in the corner of the room. Isaac wandered in during this process, and promptly made himself comfortable while I worked.

Cold days I am reminded how thankful I am for the wood stove, our main source of heat. The kids grumbled at one point or another while we were stacking last year, but I told them to just think about those frigid days when all we want to do is cozy up by the wood stove. How thankful we will be to have it all stacked! We stack as much as we can in our little basement, then stack the rest outside, and cover it with a couple of tarps.

Esther, my chief baker, has been experimenting with some new recipes. She got this book from her grandparents for Christmas:

She took the paper cover off the book because it was driving her crazy with it falling off, ripping, and whatnot. Over the weekend she made Pumpkin Whoopie Pies, using the recipe in the book. She did a really good job!

I'm still not much into sewing again, yet. I do however, have a goal to finish Benjamin's bathrobe this week. I managed to get quite a bit done on Friday, as I was feeling pretty well, and found if I chewed minty gum, I could put up with the sewing longer. Go figure! Don't you love the first trimester? Anyway, I'm hoping to get his bathrobe done so I can focus on some quilting. That will be my reward until I need to get started on the Spring/Summer sewing, which I won't force myself to tackle just yet.

I'm still gradually working on my Kindle Cover. I'm about 35% done with it. The seed stitching is so tedious!

I got a good start on Josiah's first sock. I am finding that knitting with #1 needles takes a little while!

I got a little work done on my Bella Blouse yesterday after my fingers started cramping up from using the tiny needles and thin yarn. I enjoy working with fingering weight yarn, however, and was soon back at it.

On Saturday I was browsing some patterns from KnitPicks, and Jerusha saw a cute little sweater she liked. I haven't really made anything for her yet, and the pattern looked easy enough, so I told her I would get it, and she could pick out the yarn. Well, the yarn she picked out is called "Watermelon". It might better be called "Blinded By Pink". I'm going to need sunglasses to work on her sweater, I think. All are being shipped, so in the meantime I'll keep plugging away at Josiah's socks and my Kindle Cozy.

Take time today to appreciate 3 ordinary things in your life. Right now, I'm appreciating the gorgeous winter sunlight coming in my living room window. :)

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Baby It's Cold Outside!

Winter weather... Finally!

We have 3 to 4 inches of snow, that is sticking, and staying around. Last night it got down well under zero. This is our front door, from the INSIDE of our little entryway before entering the house. I took this shortly after noon. Yes, that is a layer of ice.

I like to "air" our room for a few minutes everyday in the winter. Get some nice fresh air, albeit cold, in and the old air out. I don't leave the window open for more than 15 minutes on days like today, but I couldn't even open it because the condensation froze over night, and the window is stuck for now.

The sun was out first thing this morning and the snow looked like sparkling crystal. Walking over to church, I was very satisfied with the "crunch" snow makes when the temperatures hit frigid levels. True, the temperature had risen to a balmy 18 degrees by then, and I walked with just a light sweater and felt fine. However, I'll not complain about this weather. Ever. This New England bred gal loves it. I have been waiting for this type of weather for a long time, and I intend to enjoy it!

Have a blessed day!

Friday, January 13, 2012


We finally have a REAL snowfall! Measurable, and white, and needing shovelling. It's about time, after all, it is mid-January!

I have been working on a cover for my Kindle Fire. I am knitting it in seed stitch, which is proving to be tedious, but I understand that the seed stitching will make the cover denser than a regular stockinette stitch, so I can put up with it.

And, I'm not sure I like the feel of the yarn. It isn't as soft and luscious as I was imagining, and feels a little coarse. I don't think it will damage the Kindle, nor do I think the Kindle has an opinion on the softness of the yarn, so I will press on with the project. I do like the colorway, I have to say!

I also have started a pair of socks for Josiah, which are just plain stockinette stitch, so when I tire of the seed stitch, I can still put my hands to work on something productive. I've also started a shawl in fingering weight yarn, which I'm realizing is going to take a bit to finish. Ha! All three projects are in fingering weight yarn, a.k.a., sock yarn. I love working with it!

Yesterday afternoon I had my first prenatal check up, which went fine. We tried to hear the heart beat, but at just 10 weeks, I knew it was too early, but hey, you never know unless you try! My next appointment is in four weeks, so I'll definitely be able to hear it then.

Have a wonderful day!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Elizabeth's Fingerless Gloves

Another item off my knitting list! Josiah and Jerusha both now want a pair, but I told them they are going to have to wait a bit. I need a break from the fingerless gloves sweat shop.

Meanwhile, in a fit of severe attention span deficit, I got ready to start not one, but THREE different knitting projects.

One is a pair of socks for Josiah. Now I didn't actually cast on for that, but will be at some point today, most likely. I got out the pattern and needles, and had him pick out the sock yarn from my stash, and got it all together. I will be doing a simple cuff-down sock, all in stockinette stitch. The yarn he picked is self-striping, so there is no need for any type of fancy stitching in it. Besides, it is for a young BOY. I'm sure he doesn't want anything fancy or frilly. ;)

I did cast on for a cowl for Elizabeth. I am guessing there is plenty of yarn leftover from the fingerless gloves so I found a simple lace patterned cowl on Ravelry and printed it up. My goal is to do one for each of the twins with the leftover yarn.

I have to say that I am impressed with the Caron Simply Soft yarn. It has a beautiful sheen, and it is very soft and luxurious feeling. And it isn't priced to where you have to mortgage your first born. I would definitely use it again!

The other project nipping away at my already short attention span, is a Kindle cozy. It is another pattern I found for free on Ravelry. I casted on, did a couple rows, then realized just from that little bit it was going to be way too big. Like, several inches! I frogged it out, and started over. Now I should have counted the stitches against my Kindle before I frogged out, but with typical first trimester Brainlessness, I didn't, and shrugged it off thinking I could just eyeball it.

Ummm... not so much. I casted on again, with about 15 less stitches. Got a few rows in, and looked at it critically. Oh, did I mention I had put the Kindle away too? For some reason I didn't think far enough ahead to keep the Kindle out. (You ever get the feeling this is going to be a long and distracted pregnancy?). I got up from my comfy position and retrieved the Kindle.

Too big. Again. But not as bad.

This time I counted and know what the magic number is. (Now if I can just remember what that number was. Did I write it down? Ha! Obviously I have overconfidence in my ability to remember ANYTHING these days!). However, by then Dale was ready for bed and I set it aside for today. It will be pretty good mindless knitting while doing school, as most of it is in seed stitch. That does get tiring after a bit, and the lace pattern will be tiring after a bit, which is why I have Josiah's socks ready to go. Simple knitting, that makes me feel like I'm making progress!

Have a great day everyone!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Pumpkin Oatmeal Cookies

This recipe was brought to my attention by my friend Amy, from The View From Hidden Valley. She posted it on Facebook, and Esther, my resident baker, baked them yesterday afternoon.

They are GONE. Just like that.

They were delicious (I managed to score a small one before they completely disappeared) and moist and soft and fragrant.

You can find the recipe at The page even has printing options.

No excuses! These are easy to make, delicious cookies that NEED to be made and tested in your family.

(Oh, I substituted raisins for the dried cranberries, and it was still delish.)

(Benjamin swiping the last cookie. )

Monday, January 9, 2012

Fingerless Gloves for Esther!

You may have noticed a lot of knitting going on here lately. The simple reason is that I can knit simple stuff right now, and it helps take my mind off the "greenness" I am feeling. I've never been able to do much crafting while feeling like this, but this is the first pregnancy where I have been knitting confidently.

I promised the girls some fingerless gloves, and the pattern I am using is so easy I could do it in my sleep, so now was the time to get them done. I finished up Esther's yesterday afternoon, and casted on for Elizabeth's.

Esther is very pleased with her mitts, and Elizabeth has been standing over me asking every three and a half seconds if hers are done yet.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

HUGE Blessed Designs Pattern Sale

From what I can understand, Blessed Designs is going all digital, and are trying to clear out their paper patterns. They are currently $2.oo EACH as opposed to $11.99. The patterns are very much like the Elizabeth Lee designs, from what I can tell, though I have never used them personally.

Here is the link for Blessed Designs.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Fancy Nancy Tea Party Time!

Jerusha has been patiently waiting for a time when we could do a tea party, Fancy Nancy style of course. I was given an invitation, but had to respectfully decline due to being "green", but I did get some pictures.

The rules were, you HAD to dress up some. You could bring a guest, but they had to dress up too. Um, in this case, "guest" meant a stuffed animal or doll. The girls spent much time dressing up their Yoshi stuffed animals. Jerusha had her Fancy Nancy doll all decked out. What struck me as funny, with all the glitter and glam on the girls and their "guests", Caleb, the only boy to accept the invitation (due to the promised snacks I suspect) threw on a button down shirt, hat, and put a hooded sweatshirt on his guest. That was good enough for him.

Jerusha and Elizabeth... all decked out!

Elizabeth's guest, Yoshi:

Esther's outfit:

Esther's guest, Yoshi:

Caleb and his guest:

For refreshments were cheese and crackers, apples topped with raisins, chocolate cookie bits, and milk. It was too warm for tea. In January. In the north east. Go figure.

They had a little contest to see who could win certain categories of "Fancy-Nancy-i-ness". The results were:

1.Best out fit: The winner of this was Caleb.

2.Best stuffed animal: Jerusha Fancy Nancy Doll... of course!

3.Most funny person: Esther

4.Who acted most like Fancy Nancy: Jerusha (Esther told me Caleb was definitely NOT in the running for this category as he let out a very UN-Fancy Nancy-like belch in the middle of the festivities. He was promptly corrected by all the girls by them yelling at him "That is NOT a polite thing to do!") Esther did say that they were very glad Caleb was there anyway, and that he was a lot of fun.

5.Who was the "star" of the party: Elizabeth.

I think they had a very enjoyable time at the tea party!

Friday, January 6, 2012

Free Ebook

Here is a cute little freebie!

"101 Activities You Can Do with Your Preschool Child" is free for a limited time! An easy download, lots of ideas. Let's face it. No matter how many toddlers you have had, you can always use a refresher course, if nothing else to get you (Um, that would be "me" LOL ) out of a rut.

Get your freebie HERE.

Time to Make the Waffles

A few days ago we received a package in the mail from one of Dale's older brothers. It was a Christmas gift for the family. We tore open the package to find a waffle griddle! Oh joy! I've always wanted to do homemade waffles (store bought ones are SO spendy!) but never bought the griddle, and justified it by saying it would take too long to do waffles for everyone, etc.

Well, once I saw what it was I forgot about the time factor, and figured on a lazy Saturday morning, it would be perfect!

Esther had other ideas. My littler baker immediately started begging to make waffles for breakfast, lunch, supper, snack, whenever I would allow it. I told her she could make them this morning, but that she had to be up early enough so that we could still go about our usual Friday schedule.

True to her word, she was up with Dale, made him the first waffles, and then made them to order as the rest of us staggered our way out to the kitchen.

(Note: Esther was so excited about making waffles she forgot her hat! LOL)

Here is the breakfast that was hot on the table when I got out of the shower this morning:

Esther promised she would make a thank you note using her new calligraphy skills to send today.

Today is a pretty easy day of school for us, and I'm going to try and work up enough gumption to work on Benjamin's bathrobe. Jerusha's birthday is coming up and I need to figure out what to get/make for her. She just got a Fancy Nancy 18 inch doll and I checked out doll clothes. WOW! They are SPENDY! Some of them cost more than the clothes I buy for the family! So, I'm trolling Ebay and whatnot for patterns, but wondering if I will have patience to make those teeny tine garments. Ugh. I have a friend who got some doll clothes for her granddaughter last spring from a private seller around here. I think I will call her and find out if she still has the lady's number. She makes doll clothes for fun and then just sells them wicked cheap. I mean cheap... like a 1$ a garment. And they have all the trim, and accessories, etc. That is probably more my speed. LOL

I'm getting the itch to quilt again, but I promised Benjamin that bathrobe. That project has been sitting on my "to do" pile way too long!

Off for another cuppa and see how the residual waffle making is going. Surely we must be about out of batter by now!

Have a wonderful day!

Esther's 3 Hour Hat

I promise this is the last "hat" for a while! Esther was very excited to receive her hat, and wore it all day (yes, inside) and slept with it, I think.

I've started on the girls' fingerless gloves. I've had to adapt the pattern as the yarn I am using is only 4 ply worsted instead 8 or 10. Also, Esther has especially long, thin hands. I'm almost halfway done with the first glove. I'm hoping to finish hers up by the end of this weekend and get started on Elizabeth's.

I've picked out a quick and easy cowl pattern as it is evident I'm going to have lots of yarn left over from the girls' fingerless gloves. I'm just a little worried about the weight of the yarn and the pattern, but I can always "adjust" that too by adding more repeats of the stitch pattern. Or I can just scratch the cowl project and do scarves, but the girls have wanted me to make them cowls since they saw me working on my mother's. It won't be the same pattern, but it should still fulfill their cowl cravings.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Water Wonders Free E-book

Here is a treasure for sure! The Homeschool Freebie of the Day had this freebie yesterday, still available today! Here is an excerpt from the description:

"Today we have this vintage “nature lessons” book for young students, with delightful chapters all about the wonders and mysteries of dew, frost, ice, snow and rain. This book is very well-written, with a gentle, “Charlotte Mason” style tone, and filled with dozens of close-up photographs by none other than the “Snowflake Man” himself, Wilson Bentley"

You can get this book here. Scroll down to the January 4th giveaway.

My son Caleb is starting it today. I was looking for something "Science" for him and this fit the bill perfectly. We'll be doing it Charlotte Mason style with reading and written and oral narration to me or Daddy.

I think I can modify this for Jerusha as well, and have her learn about the many varied and wonderful properties of water.


Elizabeth's 3 Hour Hat

I still don't know how long the "3 Hour Hat" is taking me. I should just try one evening to spend three hours knitting and see how far I get on one of these hats.

At any rate, Elizabeth's is done, and I'm a few inches into Esther's. After Esther's hats are done I'm making a Kindle cozy for me, and fingerless mitts for the girls. After that? We'll see. My "want to do" list is too long and I need to prioritize.

It has been COLD here, which doesn't really bother me. :P It has warmed up to 20 this morning, but it is gray, and we are getting some snow flurries, but nothing really severe.

We are back to our school routines. We had a successful start up yesterday and everyone pretty much slipped back into the regular schedule without any problems.

I am continuing to upgrade my new binder. So far so good! I'm feeling pretty good so far today, so I am hoping to catch up on a few odds and ends around here as well as getting more work done on my binder.

Have a great day everyone!

Monday, January 2, 2012

3 Hour Hat for Josiah

I finished up Josiah's hat yesterday. It was in my knitting bag for our vacation. You know, the project I dragged out to Massachusetts and back, and only working about 3 or 4 rounds on the thing. I'm not sure I did it in 3 hours, as the pattern says, but it was a fast and easy knit.

Also in my spare time yesterday (don't you just love Sundays?) I wound the yarn for Elizabeth's hat, and got started on it. I have a friend coming over for coffee this morning so I'll work on that while we chat.

We are slowly getting back into routine here, even though we are still on break from school. Dale went back to work this morning, and I'm trying to get the usual Monday routines done which means menu planning for the week, and grocery list making.

Have a wonderful day everyone!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy New Year!

Here we are, at the beginning of a new year. Seriously, remember when the year 2012 sounded so futuristic and mysterious? Remember Epcot Center in Florida predicting we'd have flying cars? Remember when the 80's were "like, totally awesome" and now the music we listened to as teenagers is considered the "Oldies but Goodies"? The year 2012 back then seemed so far away, and I remember thinking I would be OLD by the time this year rolled around.

There has been very little activity on my blog lately, and now that the holidays are drawing to a close, I'm hoping the schedule will slow down to it's usual rate of craziness.

What happened over the last couple months was a build up of projects that had to be done first, right away, top priority.

November was NaNo month, and my time was spent writing. There was a little time spent on knitting, as I had a list to get through before Christmas, which I can now share, since all gifts have been received and no one will be unduly surprised ahead of time.

I made Benjamin a cabled hat, and a neck warmer. Thankfully, those were done before NaNoWriMo hit, and were safely tucked away for Christmas. He assured me that he was smiling under it all.

Then I made my stepmother a pair of socks for her birthday. Her birthday is a few days before Christmas, but I was trying to get them done for Thanksgiving, because she and my Dad were originally planning on being here then, but that ended up not working out, so I could relax a bit, even though they WOULD have been done in time.

BTW... my stepmother reported back to me that she LOVES the socks, and they fit perfectly. So glad to have made those for her!

My panic project this year ended up being a pair of dress socks for Dale, made by moi. It was a simple enough pattern, and I made them two at a time, but that was the project that I had to scramble on. I think this was because I had to do it on the sly, and it took much longer than I anticipated.

Also in the works, was a birthday gift for my mom. She had mentioned several months ago to me in passing that she would like a cowl, big enough to flip over her head while shovelling, but not too heavy. Then she turned to me and said, "But don't bother making me one."

Yeah, right.

So, I made her this little number called the Lowell Cowl. Very easy! I used two strands of lace weight yarn. I found out that winding shanks of lace weight yarn takes F O R E V E R. It took me about 6 hours, all said and done, to get the four shanks of yarn winded by hand. I need to get one of those little gadgets KnitPicks sells. I didn't do it all in one sitting, but when we were watching a movie or during school. Anyway, the lace weight yarn isn't too heavy, and the cowl is big enough she can wear it plain, pull it up over her head, or double it around her neck. Whatever she feels like.

I think I have enough of the yarn left over to make a second one. Pity, eh?

We travelled out to Mass. on the 26th, to visit my mother and grandmother. We had a very busy week eating and visiting. :P My mom and my birthdays are on the same day, and we went to the Cheesecake Factory in Framingham for lunch. Great idea on the food, BAD idea on the day.

To the say the Mall was busy, would be like saying the sun is a little warm on its surface. It was ridiculous! We had to park across the street. I don't mind the walking, but the restaurant was totally packed. We might have just bought some cheesecake and left except we were meeting a friend of my mother's from work. She had retired this past fall, and my mom was itching to see her. I had heard quite a lot about her, and sure enough, hit it off with Colleen immediately. After waiting over half an hour for our table, we had lunch, and it was so good! And no, we didn't eat cheesecake for lunch. Colleen and my mom got salmon and steamed spinach. I got the blue cheese bacon cheeseburger. And fried onion rings. Healthy, eh? I could only eat half the burger and brought the other half home for later. We had cheesecake for dessert, though, as is our birthday tradition. I had pumpkin pecan cheesecake. It was heavenly. Again, I knew I couldn't finish it all, so I had the waiter cut it in half, and pack it up for taking home. I think he was getting very tired of all my "cut it in half and pack up" for taking home, but never said anything. All in all it was an excellent lunch, good service, worth the wait for sure.

Now, the funny thing is that we had made plans to meet up with my uncle and his family for Chinese food that nigh. Talk about a day of eating! I think I gained about 10 lbs. back in one day. I've decided vacations are lethal to my healthy eating. Well, I already knew that. But all that eating on Thursday certainly sealed the notion in my brain.

After eating, we all went back to my mom and grandmother's house to chat for a while. The cousins were downstairs having a blast, and Isaac stayed upstairs with us grownups and played nicely with Legos and charmed my aunt and uncle. My aunt had found some interesting books for the kids to share, and got some high quality type chocolates for Dale and I. Oh, good, more calories. What's a body to do? Isn't chocolate a vegetable anyway?

This book was a hit, along with a Ripley's Believe it or Not book.

It caught my grandmother's attention, and she took a good long look at it, which concerned me regarding gifts for the kids for next year.

Dale surprised me with a Kindle Fire for my present this year! I have a couple of books downloaded, and am learning my way around using it. It is a handy device, for sure!

It's funny how there is never enough time to do all the nothing you want. I brought enough yarn to do three "3 hour hats" while gone, a couple of books, and you know what? I think I read about 10 pages and knitting about 3 rounds, all together during the week. We were busy going to Barnes and Noble, and eating, and chatting, and the days went by all too quickly. The weather was such that my mom and I went for walks together, which was nice as it gave us some private talk time without all the gremlins around.

We start school later this week. I need a few days to get the decorations down, all presents put away, organize the second semester schedule, etc. I'm also finally updating my Home Management Binder. It has been needing a makeover for a couple of years. I printed up some of the pages I will need before vacation, so all I have to do now is start putting them in the binder, and getting the old stuff out. I am redoing my address book too, and that will take a bit of rewriting and whatnot. So, we are still on "vacation" for a few more days, but it is a working vacation for me.

I hope you all had a wonderful holiday, and the that the Lord blesses each and every one of you greatly in the coming year.