Saturday, December 31, 2011

Happy New Year



Wishing Everyone a Very Happy and Wonderful New Year.

Happy Stitches and Hugs,
Tam

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Some fun things to show and tell

Who knew an Eddie Bauer shopping bag could provide hours of entertainment!

Somebody has no problem being noisy and watching what the neighbors are up to.

Meanwhile, Chanceman decides it's all to much for him so he's taking a nap and hiding his eyes so no one bugs him.

Butrscotch loves the computer and loves to watch and slap at the mouse pointer on the screen.

Finally we got sunshine, both cats were following the sun around the house laying in the glorious sunshine.
I think we aren't the only ones who need vitamin D

A few new purchases, the saucepan is a Christmas present from CR to me.  Then I had an amazon gift certificate so I got us a 4 slice toaster and a nutmeg grinder to grind fresh nutmeg on our eggnog lattes.

Nutmeg grinder close up - it's so cool!!

I received the ornament I won from Joanna's blog giveaway.  Oh mercy it is simply gorgeous!!
I also received my new coat, scarf and gloves today from Lands End.  The coat is beautiful and oh so warm.  It's been so frosty and cold here lately and in the mornings we seem to have a reoccurring theme of freezing fog.  More of the same through the new year, no white Christmas according to the weather man.

I started getting a cold on Monday and by 3am Wednesday morning I knew I was in trouble, I couldn't lay in bed and breath too.  So I called the doctor and he put me on antibiotics and a prescription cough syrup.  I hate the taste of cough syrup, but I swear the coughing makes a person feel like their ribs are broken.  I think tonight I may be able to sleep in bed and breath so that's a good sign.  Darn asthma, every time I get a cold it goes to my lungs and I'm on drugs to get over it.  Just once I'd like to beat a cold with  over the counter remedies and chicken soup.  Oh well, it could be much worse.

The owners of the tanning salon I work at give all of us whatever tanning lotion we want and a regular lotion of our choice as well for Christmas.  On top of that they also gave me a gift certificate to a new restaurant in town, I thought that was so nice and so generous of them.  I love the restaurant so after the new year CR and I will go out to a nice dinner.  I made them my dark chocolate cake and used my Christmas tree bundt pan then sprinkled it with powdered sugar so it looked like a ring of trees with snow on them.  For the kids I gave them See's Candy pops - they are awesome pops, so I hope they liked them.

I'm all ready for Christmas.  Having some folks over for Brunch Saturday morning and then it's just me and CR in our sweats chillin, watching football (well not me - just CR) and cooking a prime rib for dinner.

Hope the holiday rush hasn't gotten to you.
Happy Stitches and Hugs,
Tam

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Living with Cancer

Emphasis is on the LIVING part.  I've run into many people lately while I've been out and about and all of them have said - "you look so good".  I always thank them for that comment, because I do look good.  I am grateful that I don't look sick and weak.  I work to be and look healthy and strong.  I sleep a lot, which bugs me, but I have given in to the need my body seems to have for rest and that helps a great deal.   I am thriving despite a very invasive cancer.  My Hubby - CR, my family (especially my two Aunties) and my good friends give me strength and constant encouragement.  And lastly my attitude - I won't let this get the better of me, I am a fighter and a survivor and I will do all I can to continue the fight, do what the doctors tell me and stay as healthy as possible.  I think attitude plays a big part in something like this and I choose to be happy and positive.  It could be a whole lot worse.  I am one of the lucky ones I think.  So there it is, my thoughts on living with my cancer.  Just had to put it out there.  For each person its different and an individual thing.  For me, I'm fighting and I think I'm winning.  In January I have my next check up and tumor removal, but for now I'm focused on the season and the love I'm surrounded with.

I hope you're enjoying the holidays as much as I am.
Happy Stitches and big hugs!!
Tam

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Let Me Sew

I'm so excited to show you what I purchased with my Visa Gift Card that I won from Joanna, at The Fifty Factor's giveaway.  Lands End was having a 40% off sale and free shipping so I purchased a new squall parka and a scarf and gloves to go with it and I still have 3 dollars left on my Visa Gift Card.  Exciting, huh.

Lands' End Women's Classic Squall Parka

I ordered it in a beautiful Sapphire Blue and I can't wait for it to arrive.  The scarf and gloves I ordered in a heather grey.

And then another surprise arrived in the mail this week.  My friend Robyn sent me a thank-you gift for having her and her daughter over for brunch.

It's so adorable - it says "Let me Sew", "Let me Sew".  I got the biggest kick out of it and have used it ever since it arrived.

It's a cold and damp day here, grey and a bit foggy in some areas.  I'm just cleaning the bathrooms and kitchen and doing laundry.  Mostly I'm having a relaxing weekend and glad for it.

Happy Stitches and Hugs,
Tam

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

A Butterscotch Video

Hope I can get this loaded.  I took this video of Butterscotch in our 5th Wheel during out trip to the beach for Thanksgiving.  He is so cute and playful.
video
Maddie - taken in the summer on a fishing trip.

Another summer trip/picture, she's just so adorable.

ChanceMan and Butrscotch, chillin together, a little stretch going on.

So cute, they're starting to bond, slow but sure.

ChanceMan - or Belly Boy as I like to call him, he loves a tummy rub.

CR and Maddie - at Thanksgiving time.
Finally downloaded all the pic's off my phone, now to get my camera downloaded.  Until then, enjoy the video.

Happy Stitches and Hugs,
Tam

Monday, December 12, 2011

Imagine my Surprise!!

This morning at 2:30 am I was wide awake with my left wrist just throbbing.  I hope whatever is wrong with it, isn't serious and a cortisone shot will fix it.  Anyhow I got up and checked emails, etc since I couldn't sleep and I got the best surprise - I won Joanna's giveaway on her Blog -  The Fifty Factor .  She had a giveaway that included the most beautiful ornaments and the winner got to choose between silver and gold - I chose Gold and a $50.00 Visa Gift Card.  Wowzer, I don't usually win anything so it was hard not to do the happy dance all over the house and wake the hubs up.  Stop by and give Joanna's blog a read, she is always entertaining and I just love following her!!

I see the doc on Wednesday for the post op on my finger so I'm hopeful that he can give my wrist a quick fix and send me on my way.  In the mean time I'll leave you with some pictures of the adorable Miss Madison, the spoiled pooch!!
I'm a princess and I know it!!

Dad - please make her stop, I don't want to pose for pictures anymore!!

Okay you can take a picture if you can rub my tummy at the same time!!

Hello, my name is Maddie and I'm spoiled and I'm okay with that.
Well that's all my news for now.
Happy Stitches and Hugs,
Tam

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Christmas around our House

Although I didn't put up a tree, I do believe we are quite festive.  I've got my Grandmas beautiful Santa Collection and my collection of Angels and Snowmen.  Enjoy:











Happy Stitches and Hugs,
Tam

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Time is flying by

I can't believe how long it's been since I last posted.  That said I have been so busy I haven't had time to kick back and relax lately.  I still haven't loaded pictures from the trip and I don't know when I'll get to that, but when I do I'm sure I'll share.

In the meantime we arrived home from our trip on Tuesday the 29th of Nov. and unpacked the 5th wheel and that was about it.  Long day of driving.  Then on Wednesday and Thursday I kicked into high gear with cleaning and dusting the house, 10 loads of laundry, a haircut, fixing 26 Christmas cards and some other things that I can't even think of at the moment.  Friday I had surgery to remove those nasty pins out of my fused finger, so that day was a bust as my arm was numb the whole day and so was my brain, haha.  Saturday we were up early for breakfast, then grocery shopping, a side trip to a favorite winery for a great wine sale, then home and time for me to decorate the house for Christmas and bake my Cinnamon Swirl Coffee Cake for her to take home to her wonderful hubby.  I didn't put a tree up however, with a kitten in the house whose going through his WILD phase, I just couldn't bring myself to redo a tree every day, probably twice a day if not more. 

Sunday we were up early again as a very good friend of mine and her daughter were in town and I invited them over for brunch.  I was so excited.  I fixed a mushroom/smoked cheddar frittata, fruit, homemade buttermilk scones and eggnog lattes.  Everyone really enjoyed the brunch and the visit was wonderful.  Sadly I took a pic of the table before and forgot to get pics of myself with my good friend and her lovely daughter.  I'm such a putz at times.


I thought the table looked pretty good for our brunch but a better picture would have been with everyone around it.

Then Monday I worked and ran errands, by the time I got home that was it, I had no more steam left to do anything.  I'm so behind in my emails and blog reading it's just sad.

Tuesday I worked then came home and baked my dark chocolate cake.  Earlier in the day CR put together a yummy lasagna and we had our good friend Ken and his cousin who was in town visiting over for dinner, then cake and port for desert.  It was a yummy dinner and a fun evening and great conversation.


I went to work Wednesday just about to pooped to do much of anything but I managed to do what I always do - there is never a boring minute at a tanning salon, always something needs cleaning, etc.  By the time I got home, that was it, I was done, I was tired, I didn't feel the best and I just sat down for the rest of the day.  Thursday was more of the same.  I don't work on Friday's but I was up early for a fantastic and much needed massage.  Then CR and I met some friends for lunch and unfortunately CR was having a bit of a medical issue so we were home the rest of the day - all is fine, but yesterday wasn't much fun for him.  Today we went to breakfast and grocery shopped and now are home and I plan to sew and enjoy myself a bit.  If something needs cleaning it can wait a day or two as far as I'm concerned.

Here's a picture I took a couple of days ago - ChanceMan and Madison enjoying the Santa quilt I made last year.
Hope you are enjoying this busy season and getting plenty of rest.

Happy Stitches and Big Hugs,
Tam


Wednesday, November 30, 2011

It's good to be home!

It's always so much fun to plan and pack and go, yet I have to say there is no place like home.  Today I must tackle a mountain of laundry and clean house so that I can decorate for Christmas this weekend.  Lots of busy work to do and I can't sleep.  It's just wrong to be wide awake at 3:30am.  I hope you all enjoyed the Thanksgiving holiday.  I have plenty of pictures to share, but still need to upload them to the computer.  It may be a week or so, I have cleaning and decorating to do first.

Happy Stitches and Hugs,
Tam

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving to all my friends in the states and Happy Thursday to my other friends across the oceans!

We are spending our 29th Thanksgiving in Cannon Beach, Oregon and enjoying our time away as always.  We are snug in our 5th wheel with our sweet little dog and 2 cats.  In fact our little kitten Butrscotch traveled really well and it didn't take long for him to adjust to the 5th wheel and make it his home away from home.

The last 48 hours have been rock and roll with extreme winds (gust up to 85mph).  Wednesday morning was the worst of it, howling winds, heavy rains, we lost power, then had a big tree branch hit the roof of our bedroom slide out, our poor animals were really scared and worried to say the least.  With no power, there was no coffee in the morning.  Thankfully our hot water heater is propane powered so we could shower and then head north of us where they did have power and get coffee and a bite to eat.  Part of the highway between here and north of us was extremely flooded so only high profile vehicles were allowed through, luckily our truck is high profiled, the water was almost up to our running board.  We took it slow, can't say that for all the idiots driving through it, but there always has to be someone testing the limits doesn't there.  After getting through all that we had to be careful as our brakes were wet, but all was well and the coffee was better than normal given how long it took to get the coffee!!  The RV park where we stay lost the roof of their building that houses the pool and hot tub - like I said the winds were extreme.  Today is windy, but not like the other day, and it's raining, but more a dribble than an open faucet like the other day. 

On this Thanksgiving I am so grateful for my wonderful husband and our families and friends.  Your prayers have gotten me through a really tough year and I am so grateful to be enjoying another Thanksgiving with decent health and thriving despite cancer.

Happy Holiday and Hugs to you all,
Tam

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Did you remember to "fall back"?


I can't believe the time has come to "fall back" - we didn't set the clocks back an hour till this morning however. CR was watching the Huskies Football game till late and I was to tired to care. I really needed that extra hour, but at 6:30 am I was awake. My back hurts to much to stay in bed once I'm awake, so I got up and checked email, etc. A little quiet time in the morning before everyone else is up isn't all bad.

This past Friday I went to the TRAC Christmas Bazaar with my good friend Mary. It's a huge bazaar of crafters from all over and always has interesting stuff to see and buy. I found this one lady who paints on rocks and does chickens, dogs, cats, etc. Some are big rocks that you'd set on a shelf and some are tiny rocks that she's made into necklaces and magnets, etc. I fell in love with this necklace:


I thought it was so adorable and it's so light weight for a rock. She really can paint and I so admire anyone who can paint as I wasn't given that ability and so wish I had it.  I'd also like to be able to play a musical instrument too. When I was young I played the guitar and wasn't to bad at it, but with arthritis I don't think I could take it up again. I'm in love with the violin, but again doubt that I could play with my hands. So I love to listen to the music and dream. Have you ever listened to Joshua Bell, he's a violinist and oh he makes that instrument sing. He is just simply a master of it and I love his music. I'm also a huge fan of Tony Bennett, even before he became popular with the young crowd and his duets.

I also did some baking this weekend. I get emails from the Splenda Recipe club - just a free email newsletter and they had this delicious sounding Cinnamon Swirl Coffee Cake recipe that I had to try. CR and I both think it's divine. I use the Whey Low sugar substitute rather than Splenda.
You can find the recipe here.  And if you are interested in trying Whey Low sugar substitute, you can find it at most Whole Foods Stores, or here.  I buy the whey low in granulated sugar, brown sugar and powdered sugar and I think it bakes up like a dream.  So if you get a chance, give it a try and let me know what you think of it.

Several months ago, CR fixed my do it all for you dolly Espresso Machine and it worked great for a while, but after 10 years of constant use it finally went to espresso machine heaven and left me broken hearted.  CR loves his lattes and loves his wife's lattes in particular, so guess what we bought each other for Christmas (a bit early) - yep, a new and even more pimped out espresso machine:
And it's a beautiful thing.  Brews a darn good shot of espresso and steams milk perfectly.  I love it!!

Well it's a lazy Sunday morning at our house.  I just made some Cranberry White Choc Scones and the house smells divine.  I got some scone mixes at the bazaar that Mary and I went to.  We'll see how CR likes them.  I usually make scones from scratch, but it's fun to try different things too.

I've been knitting lately, but nothing to show just yet.

Happy Stitches and Hugs,
Tam

Saturday, October 29, 2011

What a week..........

It was quite a week, I am back to work and unfortunately it's the slow season at the tanning salon, so I didn't get to see many people.  Kinda bums me out.  I did convince the owners that they could save a half hours pay and open up at 8:30 rather than 8am - no clients till after 8:30 they might as well save on payroll.  So for the winter I'll work 8:30 to Noon.  Just enough to get me up and out of the house and keep my mind off that growing tumor in my bladder and it's removal in January.  I have done a pretty good job of not thinking about it, but it is ever present in the back of my mind.  My family and friends and blog friends have been such a source of strength and support to me, I don't think I could handle it with out ya'll!! 

I also have been going to Physical Therapy for my lower back issues and I have to say it's really helping with my back and to strengthen my left side a lot.  And I even got a massage this week that was to die for, I've never had hot stones with a massage - oh man I highly recommend it!!  My fused finger appears to have a bacterial infection from one of the metal pins in it, so I'm on antibiotics to keep that cleared up until the finger is fully fused and then they will remove the 2 pins.  I see the doc on Nov 9th and am hopeful they can come out soon after.  And my dog gone bursitis was flaring up in a bad way on my right hip, to the point that I couldn't sleep on it again so I got a cortisone shot yesterday.  OUCH, dog gone they hurt when the area is inflamed and sore as heck, but wowzer does it feel better since that shot!!  Guess you just have to take the good with the bad sometimes.

I haven't done much crafting as I've been busy catching up on everything that I didn't get done while I was in North Carolina.  This weekend I intend to get to my sewing room and start creating something, even if it's just a mess, haha.  Although I haven't been crafting, I have to show you a picture of a pillow my good friend (and hairdresser) Julie made for me.  She is such a talent at embroidery, she'll take an idea and then expound on it and what she comes up with is always just beautiful.  She gave me this gorgeous pillow for my birthday and with green being my favorite color, oy vey I just loved it!!


I like to leave my snowmen out all winter long - in hopes they're the only snow I'll see, although my hopes never come true.  I've also purchased another pillow in different colors from Julie to give to a good friend for Christmas.  She made several to sell at a bazaar she participates in along with a couple of her stitching friends.   And I've asked her to make 2 more for the Aunties, although not for Christmas, I'll take them back with me when I go visit again next fall.  I'm pretty sure they will love them.

Right now I've got some Chocolate Chip Pumpkin bars baking in the oven.  It's a splenda recipe and lord do they smell and look good.  If you'd like the recipe, go here.  I have to say it called for a cup of the tiny chocolate chips - I only used a half cup, I didn't want the chocolate to over power the pumpkin flavor.  I love pumpkin and this time of year it's just comforting to smell and eat.

Well not much more going on here.  It's gotten quite chilly, and yet today is almost like spring, however it's a fluke and tomorrow is supposed to be chilly again.  Guess Fall is solidly here and winter is on the way.

Stay Warm, Happy Stitches and Hugs,
Tam

Monday, October 24, 2011

Butrscotch and ChanceMan

While we all still miss our little Skeezics very much, Butrscotch has certainly worked his way into our hearts and our home.  He's gotten Chanceman off the couch and running around and playing and has really helped him with his grief.  He's been a constant source of entertainment and made us laugh a lot - kittens just do that.  He's put on a pound since we got him and he's really at home and loving his life.  Here are a few pictures of his silliness and him napping with his big brother:






We sure do love out cats and our dog - they bring us so much joy and love!!

Happy Stitches and Hugs,
Tam

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Back Home

I am back from my trip to North Carolina and I just have to say I had a fabulous time.  The Aunties and I visited and had fun just putzing around.  One of the days I was back there we went to a Bark in the Park event for the Animal Lovers Assistance League that my Aunties volunteer for and talk about fun.  It was a warm day but luckily there was a breeze, cuz this west coast girl gets the vapors when it's humid and sticky out.  When I returned home I had a couple days to rest and then it was off to Spokane for my 3 month cancer check and wouldn't you know there was a small tumor in my bladder again.  At least it was only 1 this time.  So my Doc decided we could wait till my next check in January to do surgery and remove it and what is there now will probably have friends (more tumors), so we'll get them all then and talk about the BCG Chemo Treatments so that I don't continue to go into surgery every 3 months.  And then today I turned 51 years young.  Yep and I'm proud of it, I think when you have cancer you embrace all the birthdays you can get and you cherish ever grey hair and wrinkle because the alternative is just not an alternative!!  And now let me share some pictures:

There was a Halloween costume event at Bark in the Park - I thought this little bumble bee was adorable
And a dog dressed like a jockey - he won best costume and you can see why, it was a great idea!
I loved these costumes best - the great dane was the big bad wolf and the beagles were the 3 little pigs.  You could tell the beagles were just humiliated to be dressed up which made it even funnier!!
My Aunt J's Dog - Gretchen:  She loves to get her hiney scratched and rubbed
Aunt J's Dog Shianna - or Shy, true to her name she is shy but oh so sweet
Aunt S's house - off to the left is Aunt J's house
Aunt S's cat Precious, she was as precious as her name implies and so pretty too.
Aunt S's cat Cuddles, she's getting up there in years but oh how she loves breakfast and dinner time.
And this is Boy, he spends time inside and outside.  He has a blue eye and a green eye and is so sweet.





Well it was an awesome visit and it went by far to fast.  That said I have plans to go back next October and we already have plans of some things to do and see.  I really missed my Aunties and it was so good to see them again and spend quality time.  They are as fun and funny as ever.

I hope you all are enjoying the fall weather, or spring for my Aussie friends.  I'm glad that it's cooled off and I am enjoying seeing the colors of the changing leaves.

Hugs and Happy Stitches!!
Tam