Wednesday, December 31, 2008

New Years Eve

I think we'll ring in the new year quietly, probably snoring when the ball drops in Times Square, and that's fine by me. CR started his external radiation this week and I started working in the main office rather than one of the tanning salons this week - so it's been quite the week. I like the new job and I still go to salons to assist or give a lunch break or do a spray tan, so I'm not totally out of the loop. The new job is interesting, it's the tanning distributor side of the house. So I still get to deal with customers, just in a different way. I just have to get used to everything and being in an office again. Sometimes I feel like I've misplaced my brain, so I hope they can put up with that little issue I seem to have the more I age. This after noon the tree and decorations come down and none to soon if you ask me. I would probably take stuff down the day after Christmas if I could, once it's done, it's done, you know. Well happy New Year everyone, I hope it's a good one for us all!!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

2009 Is Right Around the Corner

With New Years just around the corner - what are you doing, I'd love to know. Any resolutions you're considering?? Let me know, I'd love to hear, maybe you'll give me a good idea.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

A Computing Cat......

Chance Man, loves attention, however this attention must come on his terms, and where he chooses. Well when you sit down to update your blog, do email, or surf the net, there he is, doing the Chance Man march, back and forth in front of the screen, shedding hair, purring and much as I do love him, being as annoying as possible. If you ignore him, he will eventually move.To in back of the computer screen to lay on top of the router which is nice and warm, and he loves warm places. I'm sure the router is going to hack up it's own hairball one of these days, but for now, it's still running and he loves to lay on it.I've been meaning to post the table topper I made for Christmas. It's made with a Moda Roman Holiday charm pack and I just love how it turned out.And lastly, deciding that he's not going to get the attention he's demanding and the router not being that comfortable to lay on, Chance Man retreats to the couch and his favorite soft blanket of the moment. Oh so tired from trying to get his mother to pet him non-stop and tell him how handsome he is. Well she'll be on the computer tomorrow, so he'll just rest up for now and try again.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Opening Presents

The only one with a present this year was out little Maddie, I figured she loves to shred paper, so she'd probably open her dolly from Santa, she ended up needing a little help, but all in all she got right to it. CR and I took the year off from presents, except for Madison and our grandson Ben, to focus on his cancer treatment. As of Christmas Eve, things were as they needed to be and his external radiation will begin Monday the 29th. It was the best Christmas present we could receive, it's been a rough few month since the diagnosis and we really feel positive about the New Year and renewed health. For now, here is Maddie opening her present and her new dolly with a great squeaker in it!!
I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas and that the coming year brings you much joy and happiness, good health, love, and prosperity.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Company Christmas Party

Last weekend we had our company Christmas Party. As I've said before I work at a tanning salon. Well the wonderful folks I work for are a company that distributes tanning beds and lotions and do salon set ups, etc. They also have 3 tanning salons too. So here is the owner of our company - Matt. He's opening and laughing at his white elephant gift.
Here is my sweetheart, CR and my good friend and the wonderful lady who manages the 3 salons and works her hiney off - Liz (she is also the lady who made me the adorable DOG scrapbook).
Here is one of Matt and Joyce's sons - Mark, taking a picture of himself, being a total goof, but what a nice guy and he is Liz's sweetheart.
From left to right, here is Joyce, Matt's wife, then Ashley who works in the office, but is leaving us, boohoo and Keytra.
This is Josh, he went off to Washington State Univ. to study Mechanical Engineering this fall, but is back for winter break. We just love this kid and so do all the ladies - he can sell them anything, but lately is losing the top selling spot to Mallory, hmmm, has college made him soft...........
And then there is Mallory, one of the sweetest kids I've ever met and a hard worker too. She currently is beating the socks off of Josh in sales and we love teasing him about it. She is such a beautiful girl inside and out and totally doesn't know she's as beautiful as she is.
And what party would be complete without a wonderful table filled with yummy treats, and this isn't all there was, just all that was out at the moment. Good food, wine, etc and just a really fun time was had by all. Joyce and Matt out did themselves for us and it was one of the best Christmas parties I've ever attended.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

The Christmas Baking is done

Saturday was baking day here. And I got busy. I'd been a lazy girl and putting it off, well I have a party to go to this afternoon and I needed to be done to make 2 trays for gifts, and a 3rd tray for our good friend Ken. So it was now or never and I got busy. We also attended a friends 75th birthday party last night. Wow, if I look as good as Tom when I'm his age, I'm gonna thrilled. It was fun to see a lot of people we haven't seen for a while and to catch up a bit with Tom and his wife Joan. Just as we were leaving for the party the snow started and it snowed through the night. Poor short little Madison, all the paths CR cut in the snow were filled in and she was over belly deep this morning while out to do her business. It's hard being a short little dog in stuff like this. Thankfully she loves the snow and was happy to bound through it. Well as promised a few pictures of my goodies:

Made 2 Pans of Oatmeal Carmelettes
Then some mini cheesecakes - got a new pan to make these in and just had to try it out, wow, they are delicious, although they don't really look so good.
Then I made a huge batch of Buckeyes. You use a tooth pick to dip them into the chocolate, that is part of the "look" for the buckeye - a peanut butter confection, and they are delicious, and CR loves peanut butter, so they are especially for him.
Now as promised, a recipe, for Oatmeal Carmellettes. So easy to make and so delicious to eat:
50 to 55 carmels and 5 tablespoons of cream - put in a bowl that is microwave safe and wait to melt for a bit.
1 cup flour, 1 cup quick oats, 3/4 cups brown sugar, 1 teaspoon baking soda and 3/4 cup melted margarine - mix together, then put about half, maybe a bit more in a 9x13 pan, press it and spread it out to cover the bottom of the pan. Then bake for 10 minutes at 350 degrees.
While the bottom layer is baking, you will want to melt the Carmel's in the microwave, it takes my microwave about 3 minutes and 30 seconds to get every thing good and melted.
When the bottom layer comes out of the oven, you put 1&1/2 cups of chocolate chips on that layer, then pour the melted carmel over that, and then use the rest of the crumb mixture and break it apart and drop it all over the top of the carmel layer.
Now you are ready to bake it for 15 to 20 minutes more.
Cut them small or large, whatever the size, your family and friends will love them and you can take a bow for a job well done!! Enjoy.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

White Christmas

Yep, indications are it's going to get colder than it already is and we are going to get a few more inches of snow. In fact tonight it's going be a balmy -10 with the wind chill factor. At least we know how to navigate in it, those poor folks in Seattle are getting as much if not more and they don't do well driving in this at all. Today is a BUSY Saturday, I'm doing all my baking that I haven't had time to get to (I've been to lazy to do) so I just finished 2 batches of Oatmeal Carmelettes - my go to recipe at this time of year and they never fail to be enjoyed by all. I'm also making buckeyes and some mini cheese cakes to try out my new pan especially for making them. Tomorrow I'll treat you all to pictures and a recipe, but for today, my favorite movie is White Christmas and with the snows coming, well it only seems fitting that Bing entertain us with my favorite Christmas song.

Friday, December 19, 2008

In honor of Madison's love of snow - a little Dean Martin

Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow.....

We've sure gotten a lot of snow - guess we will have a White Christmas this year. Today is cold, 20 degrees, but sunny, so nice to see the sun. This weekend we're in for more snow and cold, so we should add to what we have, oh joy, NOT. There is one fun thing about the snow and that is watching Madison navigate it. We had to dig out paths for her so she could do her business. It's tough being short, funny thing is she loves to play in it, dive into the deep stuff, run with her nose down in the snow and eat snow, so here are a few pictures of the house and the silly puppy in the snow!!
Come on, I want to go over to the deep stuff, it'll be fun really!!!
Wow, did you see that car just spin out, they really need to slow down and learn to play in the snow!!
Yum, this snow is awesome - as long as it's not yellow!!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Baby It's COLD Outside

We were at a dinner party last night, looked out and by golly the weather man got it right, it was freaking snowing. I like snow, it's pretty, but I'm not into driving around with all the other idiots who have 4 wheel drives and think they can still drive 70 on the highway. I have a 4 wheel drive, but I guess I'm just a Grandma driver, cuz spinning out, ending up in a ditch and other assorted "fun" things done on the road do not interest me - getting there in one piece, without bodily harm is my idea of a good time. Oh to be so boring. So it's 18 here, but in the low single digits thanks to the north wind creating a windchill that would make your butt pucker if it weren't frozen. So in order not to freeze anything, I chose to take pictures from inside the house - go ahead, call me a big chicken, at least I'm a warm chicken.
This is the garage - or as I like to call it, CR's Big Dog House. It has a bathroom, a wine fridge, a regular fridge and heat and if he gets into trouble, he goes there, haha. The darn thing is bigger than my house, but that's okay, I don't like to house clean that much, so small is good!!

Looking out at our neighbors house, the one with 12 children who are never watched. Oh I could go on, but I'm sure you get the picture.

Looking out and across the street. Roads are a mess, perhaps tomorrow I should just put on ice skates to get to work, oy vey!!
Yesterday I started my Christmas baking. I made my Grandma's Pumpkin Bread recipe. It's so easy and simple and then I like to add a package of chocolate chips to it. YUM. I made 24 mini-muffins, 6 extra large muffins, 4 mini loaves in decorative ceramic pans for giving as gifts, and 3 large loaves. On top of that, a large pan of chili using my friend Kelly's Chili recipe. Man the house smelled good. I like to make it a day ahead so the flavors have plenty of time to mix with each other and be even more delicious. Well if you'd like a great Pumpkin Bread Recipe, here's mine and trust me - it's wonderful!!
Grandma's Pumpkin Bread
1 cup canola oil
1 large (28 oz or so?) plain old pumpkin
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 cups sugar
5 cups flour
4 teaspoons baking soda
2 cups Walnuts (chopped) - optional
1 - 12 oz package Chocolate Chips - optional
Divide batter into 3 greased and floured (I used pam with flour in it) loaf pans and bake 1 hour or until done at 350 degrees.


Friday, December 12, 2008

What to say today.............

Nothing much to share today - the week's been pretty boring. So now all I want for Christmas is people to read my blog and perhaps make a comment or two. That just sounds sad and pathetic!! Oh well, some days are like that.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Scrap Books

As most of you know I'm an avid quilter. My friend Liz on the other hand is an avid and very talented Scrapbooker. She made this adorable Scrap book for me to put pictures of Maddie in and I just thought it was so cute it had to be shared. As you can see when it's all closed up it spells DOG.

I started with pictures of Maddie when she was 8 weeks old and the top picture is of her the day we brought her home.
A couple more baby pictures and then some older pictures. The large photo is one of the Christmas card pictures I did this year. Most people do Christmas cards with their kids, but since I don't have people kids, I do our cards with our four legged, furry kids - they're much easier to get posed too!!

The last pages are of Maddie at the Ocean. She's 5 months old in these pictures, however she is really almost 6 months old and has a spay appointment on December 19th. After her having parvo and being at the vets for 7 days, just 5 days after we adopted her, I really have trepidations about getting her spayed. She's been through so much, but I know she'll be fine and I don't want my baby having babies!!

So this is my totally cool DOG scrap book, that my totally cool and talented friend Liz did for me. Had to show it off cuz I just think it's the bomb and something we'll treasure.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Cats and Christmas Trees

As a lot of you know, we have 2 cats, ChanceMan who is 4 and Skeezics who is 3 and a perpetual kitten at heart. He's our orange boy with the white tube socks and pretty pink nose and oh, doesn't he look so sweet and charming laying on the bed and just so laid back.

Well then we put the lovely, and fake tree up. For 5 days I had to wait for 13+ pounds of cat to stop trying to climb the tree. Amazingly enough, he didn't bring it down, but boy he bent some of those fake limbs pretty good.
Finally this weekend it appeared safe to decorate. So far, knock on wood, the tree is still standing, with only a couple of balls being knocked off. Now luckily, I found shatterproof balls at Walmart, I bought them up so fast it made my head spin, but I knew it would be necessary if I didn't want cut up feet or Madison, the pup who puts everything in her mouth, eating pieces of glass Christmas balls.

Here are a couple of the Santa's from my Santa collection on top of the dog themed Christmas fabric I found last year and made a quilted table topper out of.Here is the bulk of my Santa collection. This collection is very special to me as it was my Grandma's and she passed it on to me when I started hosting Christmas at my house. She's been gone for far to many Christmases, but putting these out make me feel like she's here in spirit. Below the Santa's is my non-traditional nativity - those are Bear Foot's figurines, yep bears portraying the nativity. No, guess I'm not normal and I'm okay with that.A couple of my Jim Shore Angels. I love his work, especially the angels and I have many. I really enjoy them.
I love this pillow - I think it says it all. Okay so I wasn't a super good girl this year, I wasn't all bad either - I really can explain it all, and I really want it all, or at least a few things....................
Oh the holidays, they're fun, their stressful, they're nuts and we love them for the most part. This weekend I begin baking, yummy pictures to come!!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Pictures from our Trip to Cannon Beach

Cannon Beach Oregon, we've found that some of the best weather at Cannon Beach is around Thanksgiving time. Don't get me wrong, some years we've had so much rain you could care less about the beach, but that's the exception, not the rule. A couple of years ago we got to see actual accumulated snow on the beach - that was a first and odd to say the least. This year was a beautiful year, the weather was mostly wonderful, my new hip allowed me to take long, pain free walks, our little pup thought the ocean and the sand was the best thing she discovered since dog treats, and my husband and I were just able to be there, in spite of his cancer and impending treatment. So here are just a few of the pictures I took, I think they turned out pretty good overall. Enjoy......................

Nothing better than Haystack rock on a beautiful day!!
A gorgeous beach sunset.

Madison sitting on the beach staring at people wondering why all of them aren't coming over to say hello - she loves everybody and they love her, don't they???
So this is called Sand, huh. Can you eat it???????
No Dad, I want to go this way - give me that leash and I'll lead you!!!
It's my leash and I want to do the driving. This was her first time wearing a harness, she wasn't real thrilled with it. That one little ear is always up like that and it's so darn cute - she'll look at you with that ear up and you could swear she's hanging on your every word and totally gets you too.
Tillamook Head Lighthouse, just off of Ecola State Park, but viewed from the Cannon Beach area too. I love this light house, it has quite a history. Currently it's used to store the ashes of people who would like their ashes placed there - there's a name for it, but dog gone if I can think of it at the moment.
Come on Dad - we have a lot of sniffing to do!!
Madison and CR at the beach - Daddy's little girl so to speak!!
This water tastes like crap - where can a girl get a decent drink around here.
I'm cute and I want to go this way!!
Skeezics, Chance Man and Madison - watching Dad prep the 5th wheel for winter and glad to be home - you can only take so much vacation then you need to go home to rest, haha.