Sunday, December 31, 2006

Happy New Year 2007

To my family and friends a most Joyous and Prosperous 2007! GOOOOOOOOOoooooooooooooooooooooooooo Mountineers!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Palm trees and Spanish moss

Fascinating to look at and photograph even after 15 years.
Saw Palmetto or Serenoa Repens - Sassafras Palm has been found growing wild as far north as Virginia, Washington D.C., and New Jersey, and is cold hardy to -10° F.

Saturday, December 30, 2006

so far.........

Met the nicest lady that moved to St. Augustine last year from Long Island, she makes jewelry and was beachcombing for sea glass. She returned to the beach and gave me a petrified sharks tooth.

Prehistoric Sharks – In addition to seashells, shark's teeth are another sought after beach treasure. The teeth are the fossilized remains of sharks, which roamed the oceans 10 to 50 million years ago. The teeth tend to be black or gray because the sediment in which they fossilized determines their color.


Resolutions which ones, what works so much to think about. I am going to keep the Jelly Bean one. I was actually pleased I never broke down and bought any. I even refused to have one at the family Easter dinner. Do admit, as I passed them in the grocery store, I looked longingly! While I was late in the “going to movies”, at least I finally got started. I am adding Breakfast for me before 10am daily! Did you know? ANCIENT NEW YEARSThe celebration of the new year is the oldest of all holidays. It was first observed in ancient Babylon about 4000 years ago. In the years around 2000 BC, the Babylonian New Year began with the first New Moon (actually the first visible crescent) after the Vernal Equinox (first day of spring)… While we tour St. Augustine I will ponder more! Hopefully great PHOTO Ops!

Thursday, December 28, 2006

What’s stirring?

We all know real men eat quiche, wear pink and make ice cream. They even wear funny hats!

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Holy Toledo!

Sometimes things just happen that perk wonderment. Such was the case yesterday as Sweetie was straightening his Den. A mysterious cap was found. After asking our sons we then called The Capitol Couple and asked if this cap belonged to them. The cap has a white egg-shaped oval outlined in navy blue and gold with the wordmark "Mud Hens" in white and navy blue. Centered above the wordmark is a red ribbon with the word "Toledo" on it in white. Centered above the ribbon is a modernized Muddy holding a baseball bat. Ummmmmmmmmmmmmm have The Borrowers returned to our home? Curiosity mounted as we tried to determine how, when, why etc. We found, Actor and famous Toledoian Jamie Farr often wore Mud Hens apparel and spoke their praises on the hit TV show M*A*S*H. The Mud Hens are also mentioned in the children's book Maniac Magee. One of the most famous Mud Hens alumni is Minnesota Twins Hall of Famer Kirby Puckett. The name “Mud Hens” was first used in 1896, after Charles Strobel bought the team. The park where the team played that year was adjacent to marshland that was inhabited by coots, also known as marsh hens or mud hens, from which the team adopted their name. …Is it a sign? If so what of? We need to get more chickens? HA! The mystery goes on and we stand there with arms akimbo and mouth agape and scratching our heads ~~~~~~~~~~Ummmmmmmmmm! Akimbo (uh-KIM-bo) adjective With hands on hips and elbows turned outwards.[Of uncertain origin, probably from Old Norse.]

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Christmas was all about Birds

Now if I had said Christmas was for the Birds, someone would misunderstand. You see, I really wanted Birdhouses, and by golly and gee whiz I have some really lovely ones.
Come Spring they will grace the outer edges of Sarah’s Pond.

Monday, December 25, 2006

Rising to the occasion and beyond

HINT # 20089 Chapter and verse Kitchen 101 NEVER Did I say never... Leave a tray of bread dough to rise overnight... While the turkey is slow baking in the range. Reminded me of a movie that never happened called Tomato that ate Pittsburgh, or The Sandwich That Ate Pittsburgh! Or the song Does your chewing gum lose its flavor On the bedpost overnight… Merry Christmas anyway

Sunday, December 24, 2006

The Day of Christmas Eve

7 a.m. and all is quiet. Falcour lies in wait of his master and slowly re accepts me. The tree is decorated, with the exception of the topper, which will be applied when my Sweetie returns, last minute stuff at the office. The extended family Christmas dinner was last evening. We have done this for the second year and I do believe it works well for us. It seems it is more laid back this way, takes the edge off a tad. All of Christmas Eve day to RELAX… What a concept…HA! About 2 p.m. yesterday in between my preparation of Carrots Lyonnaise [(France) most recipes that have Lyonnaise in the title contain onions.], and the Twice Stuffed Baked Potatoes, I managed to finish one more knitted Project. WHEW! Just in time as it was opened after we had dinner. This year I have knitted our daughters, my sister- in – law, and my two nieces my marriage, STUFF! Well heyya there, I can’t give it all away yet, it is ONLY Christmas Eve Day! So far the reactions have been good. Sure makes me feel especially good when the labors of my project are so well received. Is that not what Christmas is all about? Giving from the heart! Not just getting STUFF with little to no thought about the bigger picture. Ummm, might just be a ME thing. I remember as a little girl making stuff from paper, glue and glitter to add to the festive decoration in my parents home. There was nothing that my parents did not OHHHHHHHHHH and Ahhhhhhhhhhhh over that I made. Pretty neat EY? I think I am going to be so laid back today that everyone will wonder. Heyya the knitting frenzy is almost over, just two more items…well actually three, but mine for me can wait. A movie just might do me good. See ya there! MERRY CHRISTMAS everyone and a Most Happy and Joyous New Year!

Saturday, December 23, 2006

The Magic of Duct Tape!

Holiday Uses for Duct Tape:
~ Red duct tape with white duct tape trim covering a down skijacket makes a cheap Santa outfit.
~ Hang stockings from the chimney with duct tape.
~ Fasten decorative lights to railings of house with duct tape.
~ Thin strips of Duct Tape make great self-adhering tinsel.
~ Cover the fruitcake with duct tape and use as doorstop.
~ Wrap gifts in Duct Tape for the gift that says, "Open me...eventually."
~ Cover live Christmas trees with green duct tape to preventneedles from dropping.
~ Control that hideous holiday weight gain... Duct tape over your mouth.
~ Duct tape over the names in last year's greeting cards and resend them.
~ Silver duct tape turns that old bride's maid dress into shiny holiday formal wear.
~ Duct tape great grandpa upright in his chair.

Friday, December 22, 2006

Our First Christmas Tree!

Memories revisited of many Christmases ago brought forth in an article in The Charleston Gazette. My Sweetie handed me the article and as I sat there reading and chuckling and remembering. I am so blessed I met this man I call my husband, the father of our children and more importantly MY BEST FRIEND! Our little tree was a cut tree we purchased from the parking lot of the local Piggly Wiggly [a grocery chain]. We did not have a big apartment, and we waited too long but there was one tree that needed a good home. We got it in the Apartment and into a tree holder with ease. In fact the tree holders ring was way to larger for the thin sapling. We had to wrap a towel around the base of the tree to the tree could be heal securely in the grip of the tree holder. We had no decorations, but I managed to find a local store that had handmade ones. We still hang many of those decorations even to this day. The decorations were made of straw, very lightweight. I was so pleased with my purchases and rushed home so we could decorate the tree together. We got a few on before it was obvious that the lightweight straw ornament were too heavy for the fragile boughs. I remember having my Sweetie sit there in our basement apartment as I made tiny bows out of the narrowest ribbon [using his two fingers. It seemed we made dozens. I could find at the local fabric shop. Bear and Julep [our Dogs then] were content to sit and watch as Christy [our Cat then] bounded in and out of her pet window. Reflecting back on that moment makes me think! Next year we need to find a tree that needs a good home, just like the one we had on our first Christmas together as man and wife. Merry Christmas My love!

Thursday, December 21, 2006

The longest night~~

Thursday Dec. 21, 2006, marks the solstice—the beginning of winter in the Northern Hemisphere and summer in the Southern Hemisphere. The Winter Solstice, the shortest day, longest night of the year! Winter begins OFFICIALLY! Now commences the long winter evening around the farmer's hearth, when the thoughts of the indwellers travel far abroad, and men are by nature and necessity charitable and liberal to all creatures. Now is the happy resistance to cold, when the farmer reaps his reward, and thinks of his preparedness for winter… Henry David Thoreau, "A Winter Walk,"Excursions, p.134. The Evolution of the Conservation Movement, 1850-1920

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

The Mice were a hit~

I read to a fourth grade class every other week and I usually try to add something of interest that compliments or extends if you will the story in some way. I went to a local store and purchased some artificial flor de la Nochebuenao, the poinsettia. In my bag of goodies I has the Poinsettias along with a wire cutter and my dear best female friend for over thirty years lent me a shawl she had made. The shawl was done on a similar loom as the one that Lucinda and her mother, a fine weaver, worked on. The Story this time was: A Mexican Legend - retold and illustrated by Tomie dePaola. The students loved being able to touch the shawl they oohed and awed over its softness and its warmth. Then came the Mice. It recent years one needs to be constantly careful what foods are taken and or offered in schools. Many have allergies, and the list goes on. I was prepared with individual packets that the teacher and I put one mouse in and I told them they could not eat the mouse at school rather they were to take it home, share it and possible make more. They were content with that. Then as I was feeling so good about sharing not only my time, but also things I made by hand, the class totally surprised me. I was handed a festive bag and was told my students I must open it right now. I love that…that was even better, as it is difficult for me to wait…just ask my family.
And here is a picture of my newest Frog. I told the students that when I returned in January I would bring a picture and would have decided on the PROPER name for the frog. While writing this and taking pictures, it is so obvious. Lucinda, after the girl in the story, Feliz Navidad!

Monday, December 18, 2006

A Mischief of Mice

Chocolate Christmas Mice Cookies
They were too cute to eat; everyone took them home instead to show people. They are easy to make and a great project to do with children. No baking required, just use Hershey's chocolate kisses, double stuffed Oreos, maraschino cherries and chocolate chips to “build” your Christmas mice!
INGREDIENTS: 24 Double Stuffed Oreos 1 C. chocolate chips 2 tsp. shortening 24 maraschino cherries 24 chocolate kisses
PREPARATION: 1. Carefully twist Oreo cookies apart. Set aside the ones with the cream filling on them; save plain halves for another use. 2. In microwave, melt chocolate chips and shortening; stir until smooth. 6. Place in refrigerator until chocolate sets. 7. With green decorative gel, pipe holly leaves on white cream of cookie by the mouse. 8. Pipe holly berries between the leaves with the red gel. 9. Pipe eyes on each chocolate kiss. 10. Store in airtight container at room temperature.
I used Almond Bark instead of the chocolate chips and eliminated the need for shortening.
Maraschino cherries need to have stems and be well drained. You can use a clean eyebrow tweezers or something else to grasp the cherries by the stems to dunk in chocolateHECK no way dipping with fingers allows the necessity to lick fingers then washing hands before more dipping is done!
What to do with the leftover non iced Oreo! My Sweetie totally loves chocolate and as I was doing this project I knew what was happening with the non-iced portions of the Oreo. I also knew there was a double boiler pot with luscious deep dark chocolate in it. As with most projects there are leftovers as was in this case. I took what melted Chocolate was left over and RESTUFFED the remaining Oreos. Tada! I do believe he liked them.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

The Baking has begun

As we near the anticipatory moment of Christmas when many family members gather about smells of certain activities emanate from the heart of the home. Yes the kitchen. Yesterday it began here as I made the first round of Pepperoni Rolls. AH the smells of the baking bread in combination with the meat was wonderful. Our eldest son and talked about the fact that pepperoni rolls are only found, it seemed, in West Virginia. All of this I knew, but it caused to do a little research. This article is about a snack originating in Fairmont, West Virginia. The term "pepperoni roll" is also used in some parts of the U.S. to refer to a stromboli made with pepperoni. This is how I make them; buy frozen bread dough and let it thaw. Buy long sticks of pepperoni and cut it into [our children prefer the slices opposed to the sticks] 3"pieces…then 1/4 them up… wrap the dough around the pepperoni you can add hot pepper cheese or cheddar cheese with the pepperoni. Let rise until double in size...bake until golden brown.These are sold at convenience stores here in West Virginia you can just take them anywhere. THEY ARE WONDERFUL!! Other ways to make these can be found here. I will for sure be baking more to send to the DC crowd. Now to begin making a new cookie THE MICE! More on that later! Ha News and pictures at Eleven...stay tuned!

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Here it is Folks~~

Study and research…. All times Eastern 2006-07 College Football Bowl Schedule BOWL DATE/TIME NETWORK San Diego County Credit Union PoinsettiaNorthern Illinois vs. TCU Dec. 19, 8 p.m.San Diego ESPN2 HD Pioneer PureVision Las VegasBYU vs. Oregon Dec. 21, 8 p.m.Las Vegas ESPN HD R&L Carriers New Orleans BowlRice vs. Troy Dec. 22, 8 p.m.New Orleans ESPN2 HD BowlSouth Florida vs. East Carolina Dec. 23, 1 p.m.Birmingham, Ala. ESPN2 HD New MexicoNew Mexico vs. San Jose State Dec. 23, 4:30 p.m.Albuquerque, N.M. ESPN HD Bell Helicopter Armed ForcesTulsa vs. Utah Dec. 23, 8 p.m.Fort Worth, Texas ESPN HD Sheraton HawaiiHawaii vs. Arizona State Dec. 24, 8 p.m.Honolulu ESPN HD Motor CityMiddle Tennessee vs. Central Michigan Dec. 26, 7:30 p.m.Detroit ESPN HD EmeraldFlorida State vs. UCLA Dec. 27, 8 p.m.San Francisco ESPN HD PetroSun IndependenceOklahoma State vs. Alabama Dec. 28, 4:30 p.m.Shreveport, La. ESPN HD Pacific Life HolidayTexas A&M vs. California Dec. 28, 8 p.m.San Diego ESPN HD Texas Rutgers vs. Kansas State Dec. 28, 8 p.m.Houston NFL Network Gaylord Hotels Music CityClemson vs. Kentucky Dec. 29, 1 p.m.Nashville, Tenn. ESPN HD Brut SunOregon State vs. Missouri Dec. 29, 2 p.m.El Paso, Texas CBS AutoZone Liberty South Carolina vs. Houston Dec. 29, 4:30 p.m.Memphis, Tenn. ESPN HD InsightTexas Tech vs. Minnesota Dec. 29, 7:30 p.m.Tempe, Ariz. NFL Network Champs SportsPurdue vs. Maryland Dec. 29, 8 p.m.Orlando, Fla. ESPN HD Meineke Car CareNavy vs. Boston College Dec. 30, 1 p.m.Charlotte, N.C. ESPN HD AlamoTexas vs. Iowa Dec. 30, 4:30 p.m.San Antonio ESPN HD Chick-fil-AGeorgia vs. Virginia Tech Dec. 30, 8 p.m.Atlanta ESPN HD MPC ComputersMiami vs. Nevada Dec. 31, 7:30 p.m.Boise, Idaho ESPN HD OutbackTennessee vs. Penn State Jan. 1, 11 a.m.Tampa, Fla. ESPN HD AT&T CottonAuburn vs. Nebraska Jan. 1, 11:30 a.m.Dallas FOX Toyota GatorWest Virginia vs. Georgia Tech Jan. 1, 1 p.m.Jacksonville, Fla. CBS Capital OneArkansas vs. Wisconsin Jan. 1, 1 p.m.Orlando, Fla. ABC HD Rose Bowl presented by CitiUSC vs. Michigan Jan. 1, 5 p.m.Pasadena, Calif. ABC HD Tostitos FiestaBoise State vs. Oklahoma Jan. 1, 8 p.m.Glendale, Ariz. FOX FedEx OrangeLouisville vs. Wake Forest Jan. 2, 8 p.m.Miami FOX Allstate SugarNotre Dame vs. LSU Jan. 3, 8 p.m.New Orleans FOX InternationalWestern Michigan vs. Cincinnati Jan. 6, NoonToronto ESPN2 HD GMACOhio vs. Southern Miss Jan. 7, 8 p.m.Mobile, Ala. ESPN HD Tostitos BCS Championship GameFlorida vs. Ohio State Jan. 8, 8 p.m.Glendale, Ariz. FOX

Friday, December 15, 2006


Twizeller passes by
Decay from within

More on Acer

The Maple has been felled

A Sweet Understanding seemed to pass through me as I placed my hand in the heartwood of the Sugar Maple. It is difficult to explain what this tree has meant to us. It was here long before we moved here and saw all of the children grow and enjoyed many a cat and children climbing its limbs. I cannot even express my feelings unless it is to another tree hugger how sad it was to see this tree in its decline. Just as you look at the pictures try to imagine…the once splendid glory that was there, but still a wonderful memory.
Our Friend came down yesterday. I was there for it all. It was a sad passing for this once vital Maple Tree that graced our home since about the early 1920’s Maples generally grow in height from 15 to 100 feet. The Sugar Maple (Acer saccharum) grows to 100 feet in height and has a 300-year life span. Sugar Maple prefers calcium-rich soil in the upland woods of the eastern deciduous forest. It can survive years of suppressed growth in dense shade before reaching the sunlight and tree canopy above. The leaves are 4-6 inches long, opposite and have three to five lobes. In spring, there are inconspicuous light yellow flowers that are pollinated by bees and other insects before the leaves emerge. In fall, the sugar maple turns a stunning orangey red or yellow. This tree was considered sacred to the Iroquois Nation and a gift from the creator. Every year an annual thanksgiving celebration occurred with the rising of the sap, honoring another year’s survival. It is from the rising sap that maple syrup is made.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Lead foot?

ME?????????????????????????????????????????????? How could our sons say that????????????????????????? It is not I it is their father, my Sweetie. I am crushed!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Put the pedal to the metal and im off and never getting lostWhich way will I turn when roads crossPress the petal to the metal little more when it's scaryBut one thing for sure, keep my foot on the floor Toe Tapping and HAPPY FEET? HA HA!

Wednesday, December 13, 2006


(HWYT NUK-uhl) adjective -Anu Garg (garg Characterized by extreme nervousness or fear.[From the appearance of blood-drained fists, clenched tightly aroundsomething, such as a fairground ride, or in my case yet another visit to the Dentist.] I awoke this morning feeling like I had toted that barge, lifted many a bale. For sure neither was the case in fact nor the Jerome Kern song of Ol' Man River. Nonetheless major pain all over my body. It all went back to yesterdays dental visit. While She, my new endodontist, is gentle and good I was deprived of my Nitrous oxide [N2O]. Aka, Laughing Gas, the main use for N2O is usually as a mild sedative and analgesic. It helps to allay anxiety that many patients may have toward dental treatment, and it offers some degree of painkilling ability. Decades ago when my teeth decided to be in need of root canals. More than 95 percent of root canal treatments are successful. However, sometimes a case needs to be redone due to diseased canal offshoots that went unnoticed. WOW I am the lucky one, Yippeee Skippy! Neat pictures here. So I did without the Gas, because she finds the equipment in her way as she does her procedures. After getting the first of four teeth redone I sure understand that. While I woke up with incredible body pain I will attempt to GUT this one out, at least one more time. On her behalf, she said if I felt I really needed it she would supply it. I must say I love my Dentist he is a GAS! While I thought I was over needing gas yesterday was a true indication that I am not.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Environmentally Happy Feet~

The word triumph starts with "try" and ends with...? UMPH! Finally after two weeks trying to see this movie I finally made it. A low-key sunny day that made taking my Sweetie to a Matinee just too perfect. You have to give my Sweetie credit, this was not one of HIS kind of movie, and he suffered quietly and with dignity. It is sort of funny that the last movie we went to together was March of the Penguins. Actually a good companion movie as March did prepare one for many attributes of the Emperor Penguins that other wise one would not have been aware of. All the music in the film was too perfect, from songs made famous by the Beatles, the Beach Boys, Earth, Wind & Fire, Queen, and Stevie Wonder, among others. Goodness we were in our music generation if nothing else. I did latch onto at least one Punny; The scene with the Elephant Seals where Raul says, “I don't think they are penguin eaters, are they?” Ramón: “I believe they are herbivores.” Raul: “Uh?”
Ramón: “You know, kelp suckers!” The penguin society places a high value on conformity. My Sweetie commented as we left the movie,” If they thought Bambi was too violent for kids, this one is darned Scary.” Bottom line I enjoyed seeing it and am anticipating several more movies soon. December 15 Eragon, December 22 We Are Marshall. Then a long wait for "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix," which doesn't reach theatres until summer 2007. I feel sure there will be some good ones to view in the interim. I am not too sure about Charlotte's Web the book was too perfect. Although Night at the Museum looks interesting. I am just derned happy we can continue getting to see Ugly Betty.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Happy Sixth Month Anniversary

Yup, back in the warm months of June as the birds were, the frogs twilled and dancing was happening. A most lovely gathering of wonderful and exciting people gathered to witness the merger of a Capitol Couple. I offer another toast to Ruth and Matt!

Friday, December 08, 2006

Staying the Course

Rodriguez turns down 'Bama, will stay in Morgantown Life is Good

What’s in a number?

That sure depends now does it not? If it were Statistics class that would be something, or if it were this ingenious revelation to be sure! Beauty of Mathematics 1 x 8 + 1 = 9 12 x 8 + 2 = 98 123 x 8 + 3 = 987 1234 x 8 + 4 = 9876 12345 x 8 + 5 = 98765 123456 x 8 + 6 = 987654 1234567 x 8 + 7 = 9876543 12345678 x 8 + 8 = 98765432 123456789 x 8 + 9 = 987654321 1 x 9 + 2 = 11 12 x 9 + 3 = 111 123 x 9 + 4 = 1111 1234 x 9 + 5 = 11111 12345 x 9 + 6 = 111111 123456 x 9 + 7 = 1111111 1234567 x 9 + 8 = 11111111 12345678 x 9 + 9 = 111111111 123456789 x 9 +10= 1111111111 9 x 9 + 7 = 88 98 x 9 + 6 = 888 987 x 9 + 5 = 8888 9876 x 9 + 4 = 88888 98765 x 9 + 3 = 888888 987654 x 9 + 2 = 8888888 9876543 x 9 + 1 = 88888888 98765432 x 9 + 0 = 888888888 Brilliant, isn't it? And finally, take a look at this symmetry: 1 x 1 = 1 11 x 11 = 121 111 x 111 = 12321 1111 x 1111 = 1234321 11111 x 11111 = 123454321 111111 x 111111 = 12345654321 1111111 x 1111111 = 1234567654321 11111111 x 11111111 = 123456787654321 111111111 x 111111111=12345678987654321 But it is none of these! It is about getting up this morning and it was 13 outside, Above Zero. It was about it being 53 degrees inside at 6:20 am. It was about TWENTY-SEVEN trips out side to fix the gas plunger so that the heat MIGHT stay on for longer than a Twenty Minute rotation. Heyya its all the way up to 14 Sun drenched degrees at 11:30a.m. The first Two times in flannel Jammies and heavy bathrobe was ok After that it was 5 layers of sweats wool socks and real shoes. Eleven a.m. and the gas has stayed on for FORTY MINUTES~~~ “Be still my beating heart”. Not exactly the poem 'All One', by Mary Elizabeth Coleridge (1861 - 1907)

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Thoroughfares into the Wood

Turnpikes across the creek~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Thank goodness the gas did not go off this am. It gave me a lovely quiet wake up time as I gazed at the new array of lights I got up yesterday. While temperatures are in the low thirties, the wind is kicking up again. Not the winds we experienced a few days ago thankfully. The tree specialist will be here Saturday. [See Post Which Bowl?] After three head of deer ran past the lit outside trees in the front yard, the dim light becomes true morning I see the traffic pattern build. One by one the pre timed lighting arrangements give way to the day. Tenuously the squirrels are racing through the tops of the trees to gather the last of their winter foods. They are so amazing. My Sweetie prepares for another reading to his Third grade class. The teacher, the sister-in-law of WVU’s Football Team! [Also Third grade teacher of our youngest son] The great Rich Rodriguez. Three straight BIG EAST championships. A Top 5 finish. Three straight New Year’s Day bowl game appearances… We, my Sweetie and I look forward to our new experience with Thoroughfares as we prepare to head to the Toyota Gator Bowl. Jacksonville, Florida January 1, 2007 as West Va. returns to the Gator Bowl to take on Ga.Tech.
Let’s Gooooooooooooooooo Mountaineers!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Baby its Cold Inside

While not quite Bing Crosby singing Baby It’s Cold Outside I knew something was amiss. The temperature in the family room was 66 and dropping, first indication! "The song, originally performed by Betty Garrett and Red Skelton in the film Neptune's Daughter, won the Academy Award for Best Song in 1949... It was my pleasure to get the gas going back into the house. While this is really no big deal, other than the inconvenience of the hurry up and waiting. That is to say once the furnace maintains a certain temperature then I can light the Hot water tanks. All is a staggered operation and frankly is a pain in the Mane. That comment goes back to a children’s book that I read to our kids. I am sure you get the drift. With this in mind the baking will have to wait until mid afternoon, which is fine, what else can I do about that? So the electric works and the dryer is repaired. HA HA! Finish the laundry and get the last of the outside lights up as the temperatures will be in the 50’s today before plummeting again this evening. Ya know maybe by the weekend I will get to see HAPPY FEET. I have attempted to see this movie four times and something always gets in the way. Shucky Darn, as one of the kids coined this phrase many years ago.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

White Carpet

As I tread ever so carefully over the paisley summer carpet it scrunched beneath my feet. The once vibrant colors lightly hidden with lacy, delicate snowflakes seemed offended that I dare trod upon them. The crispness in the air as my breath sends small billowy clouds that surround my face. A skimmer of ice forming on the Koi pond showing intricate designs that might compete with a spider’s web. Christmas is nearing a feeling of serenity envelopes our home as preparations are proceeding. The beginning of another day; more cookies to make, more cleaning inside and out and then more outside decorating. A brief respite the early morning hours afford me. All ready 10 dozen cookies ready for the Cookie Exchange for Guild. Still more to prepare, I am trying a new recipe this year. Chocolate Dipped Lavender Cookies Lavender has many wonderful qualities and tastes great. 1 cup unsalted butter, softened 1 cup sugar 1 egg, beat slightly 1 1/2 cups self-rising flour 1 Tbsp. snipped lavender flowers 8 oz. semisweet chocolate pieces Put parchment paper on a cookie sheet or butter and flour well. Beat butter well with a mixer. Add sugar and beat till combined. Beat in eggs and as much flour as you can get combined with the mixer, then stir in the rest including lavender flowers. Drop by teaspoon onto cookie sheet. Space about 2" apart. Bake at 350 for 15 to 18 minutes. Cool. In a saucepan melt chocolate stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Dip half of each cookie in the chocolate and set aside to cool for about 1 hour. YUM! This is one way this Exchange works. Invite a group of your favorite cookie-loving friends over and ask them each to bring a big batch of cookies (estimate 1 dozen multiplied by the total number of guests), a stack of recipe cards for the cookies they'll bring and containers to take cookies home with them. After a period of chatting and snacking, the cookie exchange can commence with all of the cookies organized buffet-style on a table and with everyone gathered around, merrily swapping cookies into their containers.

Monday, December 04, 2006

Tree death????????????

Our Maple tree is dying. Possibly Girdling Roots. If a tree shows symptoms of poor vigor such as small leaves, death of small limbs, top dieback or leaf scorch, the condition could be due to a girdling root. This problem occurs when a root entwines around another large root or the base of the tree and prevents or hinders water and nutrient movement. Often the girdling root occurs below ground level, indicated by a lack of root flare at the base of the trunk, but can only be confirmed by careful digging around the base of the tree. Norway maple is often affected by girdling roots. It is sad that the tree is apparently in some sort of Dieback. I await the call from the Tree Specialist. To tell the truth I fear the worse. The tree has been here since before 1920. More about that later!

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Which Bowl?

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Cornerback Vaughn Rivers broke up a Mike Teel pass on Rutgers’ two-point conversion attempt in triple overtime to give No. 15 West Virginia a thrilling 41-39 victory over No. 13 Rutgers Saturday night at Milan Puskar Stadium in Morgantown, W.Va. A BCS bowl and puts West Virginia into a position to be invited to either the Gator or Sun Bowls. To Be Decided???? What a Game! Jarrett Brown, Brown passes for 244 yards and ran for 73 to lead West Virginia to a 41-39 triple-overtime win over Rutgers Saturday night in Morgantown. First Bowl Game December 19! Need to get the spreadsheet typed tomorrow! Ok Family and friends get ready you all know the drill!

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Wind and Rain can Dampen the Spirit????????

The last day I allotted myself to finish the outdoor decorating, or so I thought. The winds were gusting to 50 mph or more and the rain came down in buckets as the saying goes. The skies in the early morning proclaimed what was to come. Temperatures have been ranging in the high 6o’s to low 70’s for the past week and a half. The bottom was coming. While getting one decoration completes and another ready to assemble the rains pelted through my sweatshirt forcing me to retreat. While sitting in the Nook I surveyed the trees swaying violently as the rain permeated the once clean windows of my retreat. As quickly as the rains came they relented. I finished sipping my coffee and watched the Twizler nestled at the base on the Pin Oak seeing a ‘fly by’ breakfast. A gust of wind forced the Twiz into an almost spread eagle poses against the base of the tree. The wind was fierce. Once the gust had diminished Twiz moved to the other side of the tree to hide from the wrath of the winds and perchance the opportunity to continue his fast food breakfast. There was to be no finishing the lights as the rain began once again. I take off to seek help in a knitting project and go to the grocery and then to see Happy Feet. Nothing went right. The person I needed help from was not there, and the winds were so intent that the theater has to close due to the electricity going out. So why go to the grocery I asked myself. Home again and George is delighted that he can once again be inside. I am home alone as my Sweetie is at an all day and all night seminars. It is with great happiness that he calls to inform me that all is well. Of course the winds and rains are still going on. I try so hard to stay awake until he returns. I make it until 10pm then off I go to bed. Poor Sweetie gets in at 11:30pm. So today I shall finish the outside light go to the grocery get help on the project, see Happy Feet and come home to someone besides George. WVU plays their last regular season game tonight at 7:45 against Rutgers. Lets hope they win this one! The Weather might be a factor. It’s No. 13 Rutgers (10-1, 5-1 Big East) -- yes, one-time doormat Rutgers -- that can earn its first Bowl Championship Series berth and conference title with a win Saturday at No. 15 West Virginia (9-2, 4-2), a team it's never beaten in Morgantown. Let’s Goooooooooooooo Mountaineers!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

The Geese like the Lights!

The Lights go on~~~

…Four glorious days in which to accomplish the outdoor arrangements of festive lights! Filling the bird feeders before the weather turns nasty and the possibility of going to the movies is an indulgence to look forward to. My sweetie and I figured the last movie we saw was March of the Penguins. WOW what a time lapse there! I took myself to a Matinee yesterday; there are several movies I wish to see. I started with the one that seems the most likely to be gone first. As I sat in the theater of maybe 6 people I was amazed and partly amused. The movie was Borat, I settled into to the drift of the movie and found myself chuckling here and there. At some point I noticed I was the only one laughing. Ummmmmm, I do have an odd sense of humor, perhaps that was why no one else was giggling? Later I surmised, after the movie was a tad past one half over and three of the people in the way back began chuckling, that I had not LOST it. They must have been too shy. Well at least that is my thought. Last week when the kids were in I really wanted to see some flicks with them, but it just did not happen. If I had gone with them I feel sure there would have been more laughter. I am totally sure that when I see Happy Feet there will be much more laughter. Ummmm ~~ another movie for the Birds? Time marches along as it invariable does. The bedrooms are now once again ready for immediate occupancy for the next round of children. The dishwasher is less full less quickly. The dryer is on vacation for another week. George is looking for his people as they gave him dog treats more often. Time to get back to finishing making Holiday gifts as I sit in the Nook and look out into the woods.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Strung Out

It has been so warm here the past few days that not only are some Dandelions blooming but the Tree Frogs are Trilling.
All of this is fact as of 3 p.m. after string some Christmas light out side.
No Sock weather here!
Whooooooooooooooooo Hoooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Meet Doug and Frazier Fir

Above is Frazier ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ This is Doug;

Fuzziness and Frazier

WHAT? At days end the desire to sit in the Nook with my spouse and contemplate the day’s events with a glorious sunset to gaze upon was lovely to say the least. Until it was totally dark! YE GADS there is some sort of SKUM on the window! Dashing quickly for the window cleaner I cleanse the affected area. NOPE, it was fine. Ummmmmm what had happened on this oddly shaped area? Alas I will have to wait until tomorrow to re clean the outside. The kids were going to a movie the rest of the kids came in and out of the kitchen for a low key serve yourself dinner. We had munchies on the table for the game and the possibility of a real sit down dinner was not in the offing. Some of us were still bummed out that West Virginia Mountaineers did not look good nor did they win. That however did not stop us from all going to pick out the PERFECT Christmas tree for this coming Holiday. A Frazier Fir; Dark green needles; 1/2 to 1 inch long; good needle retention; nice scent. Named for a botanist, John Fraser, who explored the southern Appalachians in the late 1700's. And a Douglas fir; Good fragrance; holds blue to dark green, 1 to 1-1/2 inch needles well; needles have a sweet scent when crushed. Named after David Douglas who studied the tree in the 1800's; can live for a thousand years. We have for the last 29 years gotten a rooted tree then planted it on the farm. In all those years we have only lost 2 trees. This year there was a bush that was slowly dying and I wanted it pulled and replaced with a pine. We accomplished that yesterday. Today we shall plant that tree and ready the house for the forthcoming Christmas tree. A
Stabilizes soil.
Emits fresh oxygen.
Protects water supplies.
Creates a scenic green belt.
Provides refuse for wildlife.
Absorbs carbon dioxide and other gases.
Protects soils, which may not support other crops.
Recycled real Christmas trees create mulch
for gardens and landscaping.
For every real Christmas tree harvested,
at least three seedlings are planted in its place.
One acre of trees produces oxygen for 18 people per year.
Real trees recycle back to the earth from where they started.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

And I Quote “~~~~~~~~~~~”

Ah the display the early morning sky again gave was magnificent. The anticipation of temperatures in the 60’s as well as being outside and stringing the light. A brief break at HIGH noon: WVU plays SFU! On another note! Neat book to check out. The Yale Book of Quotations. It's full of wisdom from pundits through the ages. Matt Groening, "Life in Hell"US cartoonist & satirist (1954 -) Love is a snowmobile racing across the tundra and then suddenly it flips over, pinning you underneath. At night, the ice weasels come.

Friday, November 24, 2006

L-Tryptophan and the Turkey

The sun sets on Thanksgiving Day Eve. The gorging begins soon. WVU plays South Florida Noon the 25th at Mountaineer Field. The rankings as of today. Lets Gooooooooooooooooo Mountaineers!

Thursday, November 23, 2006

The Yolk might be on YOU!

It is not Easter; it is the sons seeing who wins the EGG BET. Looser willing to clean the mess up. But first one needs to determine who will be the clean up man. There is only one way to determine this. Rock, Paper, Scissors Out Come one cracked egg SLIGHTLY cracked, minimal mess!

Wednesday, November 22, 2006


The early morning sky was amassed with lights from the heavens. The trees now almost depleted of leaves seemed to assist the suspension of the stars. Random patterns amidst the limbs like a grand avenue of Christmas lights inviting one to gaze. There was further enhancement was provided with Fantasy for the Piano by Frédéric Chopin via NPR. The calm before the home once again will swell with gales of laughter as our offspring assemble to celebrate Thanksgiving. Life just gets better and better.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Giblet, Wattle and other FOWL Stuff

There are a number of explanations for the origin of the name of Thanksgiving's favorite dinner guest. Some believe Christopher Columbus thought that the land he discovered was connected to India, and believed the bird he discovered (the turkey) was a type of peacock. He therefore called it 'tuka,' which is 'peacock' in Tamil, an Indian language. Though the turkey is actually a type of pheasant, one can't blame the explorer for trying. There are more chickens than people in the world. There are two words in the English language that have all five vowels in order: "abstemious" and "facetious."(Yes, admit it, you are going to say... a e i o u) Rubber bands last longer when refrigerated.

Sunday, November 19, 2006


A friend of mine shared this story with me. I am sharing it with you all because it is adorable and it made me smile. “I once raised two white rock chickens, they were pets, would come when I call them and if said "Hazel, want some noodles" she would come running, loved those leftover noodles. I always had a fresh egg that is until one of the hens decided to set on hers. Without a rooster it wouldn't work but my father came to her rescue. He had some baby bantams and gave me a few. I went out after dark, reached under the hen, took out an egg and put in a baby chic. I fooled mama hen. Ummm, I wonder what mama thought when the chicks didn't grow as big as her:)”