Sunday, December 30, 2018

Goodbye 2018

I truly feel like I was just welcoming 2018. It has flown at supersonic speed.

I hope to end it tomorrow with a beach walk. Hubby and I made it out today even though it was a dreary day. We set out to go early this morning only to turn around and head back because it started raining pretty hard. We came back and made breakfast at home and then did a little cleaning and organizing. We went back a bit later.

It has been dreary for the last couple of days and I think we have about two more of those days which hasn't been all bad. I am in that clean up and declutter mode. I have had Hubby working on some things and he is obliging because he can't get out to do much else. 😆

I have been stitching in the evenings. I realized I have quite a few large projects in progress and suddenly it was driving me nuts, so I am back in one stitch at a time until I whittle some of those larger WIPs down.

I started the chickadees and pinecone one right around Christmas, but my heart wasn't in at that moment. Two things: I am ready to stitch anything other than Christmas and winter and I realized I wouldn't be able to finish it to display this winter because it is pretty time consuming. I put it aside until the fall. I had a moment where I questioned it yesterday. There was a group of baby chickadees right outside the living room in the oak that the top of the tree is seen from my top deck. They were so cute, but like I said...
I am ready for something else.

I am working on the schoolhouse series. I am doing them on 28 count 2 over 2 and that was on purpose even though the pattern called for 1 over 1. I just simply can't do that little tiny stitching anymore. I don't think I would even enjoy trying, so 2 over 2 it is.

Progress on the first section which will be the largest. The others are more pinkeep sized.

I have been making all my goals and lists and plans for 2019. I always do this in my planner. It is nice to look back at the end of the year and see what you accomplished. 

I stitched and read quite a bit, but I can tell you I did awful on my gym visits starting late summer. I can totally feel it, so I have been detoxing from the holidays for the past few days and have another week to go and hitting the weights and walking again starting tomorrow.
I will start tracking it again in my planner!

My last note for this evening is blogging. I know it will take a hit after this week keeping Tucker. I have been thinking about much of my day and how I am going to rearrange things to accommodate this blessing.

I love to exercise, read my Bible, then read blogs while eating breakfast and all of that is going to have to be done in the evenings now. I will go back to a schedule much like I did when I worked full time. A quick devotional in the morning because I simply must start with a little bit of His Word and then all of those other items I will work into my evening schedule.

That means I will be reading my blogs most likely at night and even posting my own things. I hope to be able to write at least once a week. We will see how it all goes down I guess.

I will leave you with a Tucker picture. He was at my house the other day hence the pink seat that he is sitting in. A friend gave it to me:)

His mommy dressed him so cute.

Gus was saying hello to him. Lemony has been under the weather. She got an ear infection and didn't feel well at all. Then her antibiotics messed her tummy up, but she is on the mend now and I knew she was feeling better because she played with Gus quite a bit today.

Thursday, December 27, 2018

Christmas 2018

Another Christmas has come and gone. I am in clean up mode now. I spent the day yesterday taking down the decorations. I got them down and clean up day is about to go down, so I decided to post before I forget.

Christmas Eve was the usual minus Lindsay, Tyler, and Tucker who visited Tyler's family in Atlanta. His grandparents and aunts and uncles all got to meet Tucker for the first time. I think it was a good idea to wait until this age (10 weeks) to visit. They said he was great and smiled and cooed for all.

Here we had Mom, Jeff's sister and brother-in-law, Paul Allen and Katie for our usual dinner. Since we have always opened presents here on Christmas Eve Paul Allen and Katie opened all of their presents except the ones from Tyler and Lindsay. They weren't sure they would be able to get back over Christmas night.

I think present selections were all good. Both seemed very happy with their loot.

Opening Mom's present...they almost missed the money in the box.

Tyler and Lindsay arrived Christmas Day early evening and we did the same routine all over again. The next night the only thing different about the table was the color of the napkins. Green that time.

Jeff and I both noticed Mom seemed to have the best Christmas she has had in YEARS. Think Tucker might be the reason?

Too many Tucker pictures?

Turns out Paul Allen and Katie did get back over. My heart was happy.

Aunt Donna and Uncle Al came back over for dessert and to see Tucker also.

I got some new cross stitch patterns and floss from Linsay and Tyler, a nifty essential oil bracelet from Paul Allen and Katie, and some new pajamas from Mother. My present from Jeff didn't come in. It is apparently a collectible space thingie. He was downhearted. He wasn't supposed to get anything as we got a new fangled stove/firepit for the Auburn house. I will share it later.

I thoroughly enjoyed my family.

I got a very sweet text from my sister-in-law thanking me for keeping the family traditions alive. Even Kristan, our niece tries to replicate the menu in Houston. They no longer come home for Christmas. Donna and Al do FaceTime and will go out later. I know those days are probably coming for me too. I try to soak up all I can get now.

I am sharing this picture of the Christmas closet. It is now upstairs. I moved it up back before the beginning of hurricane season from the downstairs closet. Funny my thoughts were if we have a hurricane I would be sad if we lost all the ornaments for the tree as most are collected pieces that just tell the story of our family life. I had all my Christmas stuff in a downstairs closet and had thought if we ever had a really big one that water would definitely come in downstairs.

As I put it all away yesterday in the upstairs closet, I couldn't help but think of our neighbors to the east. I am still reeling over that one. It is futile to think you can prepare for that kind of storm. Every home over there has trees all in their homes. No closet up or down is a safe haven for that fury.
A poignant reminder that we can't take it with us. Just enjoy every moment you are given and hold onto memories.

I am in reflection and cleaning mode. I have no idea what January is going to look like on the blog as I will be keeping Tucker.
I will not be going away. I just be even more sporadic. We will see.

I was so sad to see Poofing the Pillows announce she was closing her blog after 10 years. I know they are have an expiration date, but I was still sad. She is going to Facebook only.
My favorite medium is still the blog, so I will just keep on posting. I am sure an ending date will come and I am glad she just didn't disappear.

A few more pictures. My kids were not too dressed up this year for Christmas. One set had been traveling. One set had been out and about at the other parents house in a more active setting. I barely got my usual Christmas picture. Lindsay said I couldn't put it in the frame I usually display. It is perfect to me except for one tiny thing. Katie likes FSU. I guess it could be worse...

Tucker had decided he was hungry, so I was lucky to get one picture.
I even let Jeff take one of me.

and a tired Jeff afterwards.

Oh and the weather was perfect for Christmas too. 
I think it is about to be stormy for the next few days.

Off to clean up,

Thursday, December 20, 2018

Merry Christmas

I am saying Merry Christmas a little early. I am going to take the next few days to unwind and enjoy the family and Christmas.

I managed to get Lemony and Gus both to sit in front of the tree which was no easy feat. Some vanilla wafers were involved.

I have no idea how others get them to pose.

Roses and lemons...I am liking December.

Christmas cactus right in time.

Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

An Auburn Santa Finish

The Auburn Santa is finished. I took a Prairie Schooler "Partridge in a Pear Tree" to make my own version to fit my Alma Mater.

The Auburn Santa version is decked out in our school colors of Burnt Orange and Navy Blue and yes, we always say orange before blue. It is not blue and orange:)

The partridge became an eagle. A golden eagle. The eagle is not our mascot, but our battle cry. There is a whole long story which every Auburn person completely understands. Auburn is also a vet school so they house all types of injured birds. The bird that flies over the stadium has been a golden and a bald at times. We say Waaarrr Eagle when he flies over. Our actual mascot is a tiger...hence the stripes!

The pear tree became a live oak tree which grace Toomer's Corner at the corner of Magnolia and College Streets in downtown Auburn and begins the beautiful entrance to campus.

After an Auburn victory, students go to Toomer's Corner to roll the live oaks.
This is after the national championship in 2010 where more than the corner got rolled. IT looked like snow afterwards.

I remember fondly going there myself as a student to roll it. I actually walked between the trees daily for my years at Auburn to get to school from my apartment.

So that is the story of the orange and blue Santa with an eagle, a tree with toilet paper on it. 

It's great to be an Auburn Tiger,

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

A Random Post

I have so much to blog about which is quite unusual!!! I am popping in today with a whole bunch of random. I probably have a couple more posts in me before Christmas, and then I will stop and just enjoy the family time.

I coaxed my daughter into taking a few pictures of her Christmas decorations. She had one more place decorated, but she didn't send it to me and I didn't push it:) She is busy after all.

The window mirror is from an old house that was on a family property. I took two of them and made mirrors out of them.  The other one is at our Auburn house. She saw this idea on Pinterest last year and made this for her dining area.

Her tree with Tucker's new ornament.

I made the tree skirt for her. You can read about it here.

I had hoped she would have the bookcase behind the couch because it is cute too, but I am not asking for more. 

Onto other things...
I still have roses blooming. I am not complaining at all. They are spindly as I don't fertilize them after the first of September, but they are still offering me some delights.

I brought some inside to enjoy.

December is usually a gloomy month in terms of weather and light. It is often rainy and foggy in the evenings which it has been, but the sun popped out this weekend and I am just loving the sights and sounds on the bayou. The birds are flocking in and making all kinds of racket. My idea of perfection.

It is autumn in northwest Florida.

I am almost finished with my Santa ornament. It is in the making and should be done today to hang on the tree.

I will be back with at least one more post before Christmas.

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Christmas House 2018

I am capturing the home's pictures for 2018.

Each year I feel like I have settled into retirement a bit better and know what I can do and what I can't and what I can tolerate for an entire month.

The foyer table looks no different than last year other than this year I added the bows to the candlesticks. I think I alternate years on that:) Some years it strikes me as busy and other years not so much.

I moved my church pew out of the foyer and it is once again a spacious area with only my Christmas cactus and the table above. I like it, but.... 

do I like where the pew has landed?

I have to live with it a couple  of days. It came just outside the foyer to the other side in the open area. I have moved the desk that has been sitting in the pool table room for 5 years to the Auburn house this past weekend, so I will be able to see it all a bit more clearly and ponder it this week.

Across from the pew sits my favorite little bunny.

In the remaining bit of the foyer is the Auburn tree which had been sitting where the pew is now which may move to where the desk was....

Am I completely confusing you...

It may turn into a game of shuffle board later.

I think the Auburn tree is screaming for me to finish my Santa ornament which I completed tonight and will fully finish tomorrow.

Across from the tree is the one of the other banisters.

And then down from them is the downstairs banister.

The simple girl in me can't take anymore garland than that. I have tried having it over the double doors going into the family room or on the built-ins, but I start going nuts by Christmas. Too much clutter.

The dining room table.

We do eat in here on Christmas so it will get a tablecloth and the fancy dishes.

The bows on the sconces got some pine cones added this year.

Grandmother Palmer's rocking chair.
The buffet always gets the manger scene out before any other decorating is started. I am hoping to get the stable this year.

Oh the corner cabinet in the stairwell got a cross stitched piece.

Moving into the family room, I am in love with my Christmas pillows.

Each end table gets a votive and a little something small.
I love the candles on these dark evenings. The votives will stay out into January.

Yes, those our dog kennels in the background. Both pups have their own space, but covered with a cute linen curtain of course. It is great when guests come say, "Go to your box!" and both are trained to go and sit there and not disturb people who might not be dog people.
Not too many of those come to our house though:)

The bookcases get a few things strewn in, but like I said I can't take too much or I start going crazy.

I have mostly gotten it down to just a few favorites. My mother-in-law gave me the reindeer one Christmas at least 30 years ago. It is a favorite. She had one as well that I passed onto my daughter when we moved in here. I should really do a few pictures of Lindsay's house because she has it so cute. I have given her quite a few things from my stash. I had so many things that had been gifts from kids while teaching but I held onto them. I have showered both my kids with stuff and I am happy to say they are using it. 
It is nice to see it in use and I can remember at their house.

The tin boxes are from probably 1986 from students. Both are just so me. 

The tree in the day with lights.

And without... 
You can see the holes, but I really do love all trees. 

At night, you get two trees in the room with the mirrors reflecting the light. It might be one of my favorite things. I can sit in my stitching chair which is front of the tree and still see the lights.

The sewing room gets its Christmas tree from the 1970s. IT was Mom's.

The guest bathroom is basically the same. I added a crystal bowl of ornaments and some candles on the counter.

The kitchen is the same as last year.

I have stitching on one counter. I use the island for most food prep so it is safe to add the stitching.

A little stroll for posterity's sake. 

My sweet little Tucker today. Lindsay sent me this. Seriously...he is so cute. 
Spoken like a true Grammie.