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Wednesday, December 30, 2009


Happy New Year to you! May your year be blessed with……

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good friends…

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a puppy..
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a lovely home…
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and all the blessings you can hold. Happy New year , dear friends.


Tuesday, December 29, 2009


This year has had its ups and downs as all years do. We hit a patch of bad health for both myself and my husband. We got a Jack russell puppy who gave our life some excitement. We vacationed with family and enjoyed the company of friends. Here are some tablescapes that I put on the blog this year. I hope you enjoy seeing them.

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Monday, December 28, 2009

The snow has arrived once again

Overnight the temperature dropped and snow began again. By morning it was about three inches deep and the plow was pushing the snow from the road in front of my house. It has been snowing lightly all day long but I have been safe, warm, and cozy in my house. It has been “catch up” day with laundry and completing the wrapping of presents for my son and his family who will be arriving New year’s eve. Sadie was cold and wore her new sweater that Uncle Ryan bought her for Christmas.
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The candles were lit for Christmas day and we enjoyed a tasty grilled steak dinner. Our dessert was our traditional Baked Alaska.
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Sunday, December 27, 2009


It’s almost 2010..do you have your New Year’s Resolutions ready? Well, neither do I. I think I’ve had the same resolutions each January 1st for about 40 years…lose weight. This year it will be the same one. As I come out of this Christmas sugar coma I realize that things have got to change. I think the word “resolve” should fit me better this year. I resolve that I will eat healthy foods with the goal of having more energy and body fitness and forget about being thin.
  I saw another resolution on a blog…laugh out loud…everyday. What a great resolution. We all need more happiness in our lives no matter how well things are going.
   So get your resolutions written down, your goals made, and get at it girl. Here are a few tips.
  • Be realistic
    The surest way to fall short of your goal is to make your goal unattainable. For instance, resolving to never eat your favorite food again because it bothers your IBD could be a bad choice. Strive for a goal that is attainable, such as avoiding it more often than you do now.
  • Plan ahead
    Don't make your resolution on New Year's Eve. If you wait until the last minute, it will be based on your mindset that particular day. Instead, it should be planned well before December 31 arrives.
  • Outline your plan
    Decide how you will deal with the temptation to skip that exercise class or have one more cigarette. This could include calling on a friend for help, practicing positive thinking and self-talk, or reminding yourself how your bad habit affects your IBD.
  • Make a "pro" and "con" list
    It may help to see a list of items on paper to keep your motivation strong. Develop this list over time, and ask others to contribute to it. Keep your list with you and refer to it when you need help keeping your resolve.
  • Talk about it
    Don't keep your resolution a secret. Tell friends and family members who will be there to support your resolve to change yourself for the better or improve your health. The best case scenario is to find yourself a buddy who shares your New Year's resolution and motivate each other.
  • Reward yourself
    This doesn't mean that you can eat an entire box of chocolates if your resolution is to diet. Instead, celebrate your success by treating yourself to something that you enjoy that does not contradict your resolution. If you've been sticking to your promise to eat better, for example, perhaps your reward could be going to a movie with a friend.
  • Track your progress
    Keep track of each small success you make toward reaching your larger goal. Short-term goals are easier to keep, and small accomplishments will help keep you motivated. Instead of focusing on losing 30 pounds, say, focus on losing that first 5. Keeping a food diary or a symptom journal may help you stay on track.
  • Don't beat yourself up
    Obsessing over the occasional slip won't help you achieve your goal. Do the best you can each day, and take each day one at a time.
  • Stick to it
    Experts say it takes about 21 days for a new activity, such as exercising, to become a habit, and 6 months for it to become part of your personality. Your new healthful habits will become second-nature in no time.
  • Keep trying
    If your resolution has totally run out of steam by mid-February, don't despair. Start over again! There's no reason you can't make a "New Year's resolution" any time of year.
  • Tuesday, December 22, 2009

    Christmas Luncheon with the Girls

    What a lovely time we had today when the coffee girls came to lunch. My friends, Joan, Lynda, Jeannette and Lisa were here to help me celebrate this Christmas season. We began with drinks (sparkling apple/pear or apple/pomegranate juice) in the living room. Soon we moved into the sunroom for our first course which was Hyde Park Salad, a wedge of lettuce, blue cheese dressing, blue cheese crumbles, bacon crumbles, and candied walnuts.  The main course was Sausage Wellington and broccoli with toasted pine nuts. For desert I made peppermint ice cream snowballs covered with hot fudge sauce and peppermint bark. It was fun sharing time with these girls at my house. I gave them a little gift of Tuscan Spiced Salt that I had made for them.
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    Monday, December 21, 2009

    I have an elf at my house!

    My husband could have worked for Santa in his workshop. All day today he has been as busy as an elf with projects. First he completed cleaning the hot tub room. It’s all ready for company this christmas. Then I bought a kitchen island that came in a ton of pieces. I must say it had the most complete directions with every part labeled that I have ever seen but even then it took him about two hours to get it all together.
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    Now he is mounting his new flat screen on the wall. Santa needs to be very good to him this year.

    Sunday, December 20, 2009


    There have been years when I made cookies for weeks leading up to Christmas…that wouldn’t be this year. I found that I always had so many cookies left over that I was begging people to either eat them or take them home. Everyone was stuffed with Christmas treats and didn’t want any more either. One July I came across eight or nine assorted dozen stuffed in the back of the freezer in the garage. So this year I am keeping my baking to a minimum. I made some date swirls, Russian tea cakes, peanut butter kisses, pineapple timmies, and some fudge. I will fill in with cookies from the bakery. quote

    Thursday, December 17, 2009

    What a busy day!

    Penn State weather says 25 of the next 35 days will have below normal temperatures. There will be an easterly storm track through January 19.    Just a little weather report, in case you wondered. We have a dusting of snow (the grass is still peeking through) outside and very cold temperatures. 
        You’ve heard the song “I’m making a list, checking it twice” ?  Well that was me today. I was determined to get things done today. I had cards to finish and presents to wrap and get mailed out . Yesterday I avoided the tasks by cleaning out my linen closet and two drawers in the kitchen. (I don’t know where that bug to get organized came from). But today I just had to get things done. I made a list on the board in the kitchen and set about to finish my jobs. 
       I also decided to rearrange the computer room and get it organized today.
      Then after I went to the hospital for my mammogram, bone density and swine flu shot, I stopped my the post office and mailed out the presents to Ryan and the cards.
        I’ve got even more to do..but tomorrow is another day.006

    Wednesday, December 16, 2009

    cold, snowy day

    All day it has been windy and blowing snow around. The icicle lights along the front of the house are swaying in the wind and a fresh snowfall covers the courtyard. This morning after coffee I headed to our local Walmart with my list. Since the store’s big remodel the aisles are larger as advertised but I’m finding less merchandise than they used to carry and higher prices. Things that once were easy to locate and were expected to be there no longer are on the shelves or else one brand besides their own great Value brand which has taken over. I heard from two different people today that they were in Walmart and it was extremely empty. That is very unusual for this time of year and in general since it is our main store in town for everything. Maybe this “new” Walmart is no longer meeting the needs of our community.
           At noon our Red Hat group, the Kinzua Kuties, went to the Option House for our Christmas party. We had a nice lunch…chicken salad croissant, and tossed salad and exchanged gifts.option house
    This is the entrance to the newly remodeled Option House which is elegant. We ate upstairs in the Peacock Parlours.

    Tuesday, December 15, 2009


    Last weekend was the fifth time that I have traveled to my sister Linda’s home in Fredericksburg, Virginia for the Candlelight Tour of Homes. This year the tour consisted of 6 homes and a tour of Kenmore, a plantation that is in the process of restoration.
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    It is nice that only natural decorations are used in the homes we toured. Various florist decorate the homes inside and out. Pictures were not allowed on the inside but here are some from the outside.
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    At each home there was a person outside to describe the architecture of the house and tell a little of it’s history. These homes were built in the 1800’s and some had remodeled kitchens and additions in the back.
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    Kenmore plantation was very impressive and the plaster work is the best surviving example of its kind in the Uniter States.
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    The Confederate Soldiers were camped out on the large grassy area on Washington Street. They practiced marching and stayed there for the weekend.
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    We went to downtown Fredericksburg to see our favorite window in a kitchen/gift store. This year the mice were decorating for Christmas in a model of the storefront inside the window. The John Travolta imitator doing the disco routine is under the display in the mouse bar.
    There was a lot of shopping involved and when we went to a furniture store I couldn’t resist the console table that I had been searching for. I had it put in the back of the van (love that van!) and had no trouble bringing it home with me.
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