Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Happy New Year! One last one for 2013.....

I know I am cutting it close, just under the wire. I was going to do this earlier today and then go out this evening and enjoy sometime with our running group, but fate stepped in and decided I should come down with the stomach flu. Well so much for best laid plans.............so after stuffing myself with turkey soup and crackers I am feeling somewhat better.......hopefully:)

The last few weeks of the year have been hectic as it is for most. I wasn't totally into the Christmas spirit with not having all our children around. We did have our daughter Kait home and talked to Jane up north, we skyped our son from afar......and that had to be the worst, knowing what kind of Christmas he was experiencing for the first time in his life......but it is what it is, but not what every other parent, wife, husband, brother, sister, was experiencing who have military family. It will be a wonderful world if and when we can ever live without war and live in peace. I wonder if WestJet and Santa could fill that wish! So onward we go into 2014 with hopes and dreams for a better future for one and all......

So this morning before the plaque took hold of me, I had a mission to complete.......I had a vision.................BM 2108-40 Stardust.......yes painting a new color in our living room. It was a big commitment......but like they say "it's only paint".
I did remember to do the before photos, and really there was nothing wrong with natural linen, and pashmina, but a tad boring.......and nothing seemed to "pop" on the walls.
Steve enjoying the heat.....

Sorry but I can only do neutral for just sooo long......


The hubs left for work at 7, and the games began.............paint brushes, drop cloth, trays, "tape", ladders and away we go>>>>>>>>oh and a gallon of BM Aura Eggshell. I really should work for Benjamin Moore........oh ya right "I do!" What a great paint! It really is true, and I am a hard customer to please! But it is true what they say. I really can't say anything bad about the paint. I am not a professional painter so I do not know all the tricks of the trade but I have opened a few lids in my day. There are certain techniques that work better with Aura but being the non-conformist that I am, I painted like I always do and "wha-la" success!

I think for this long plain wall I am going to get some
floating shelves in black, and then a place to put those
chatkas, and knickknacks, and then I am going to
paint a picture for the wall.
Betcha didn't know I was a artist as well!
Front Entry table
Well, that's it for 2013 my friends,  I wish you all a goodnight, well wishes for the coming year, may you have much happiness in your lives, know the meaning of love, and find comfort in the everyday simple things.........be well, be happy, be content.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Hmmm.....not much for superstition

Friday the 13th,  well I never think much about it being an unlucky day, because everyday above ground is a good day!

Well last weekend was spent in Sacramento. Soooo much fun! Seeing all my old running friends was the highlite of the weekend. Amazing good friends, and good times! Now if you know anything about runners you will know that we aren't huge partiers.......because there is always a run on the horizon. A good time was had by all, and the company was fantastic!

The running was fabulous, the weather....... not so much!!!!! People what do you think when you think California? I think decent temperatures and palm trees. Okay lets talk wet, cold, snow, and  okay blue skies and sun.......but -10C and -15C??????? What were they thinking! The cold front that travelled down from Canada definitely made its mark on California.......But being good northern stock we were good with it and I came prepared with a down jacket, and winter running gear. So that part was A-Okay!

A few PR's happened also this weekend, that's runner lingo for Personal Record.....congrats to those girls.

Annie and Joanne, great finishes!

Of course a trip to the States wouldn't be complete without a little shopping and of course, I made sure there was a DSW before I left. So I introduced my GF's to the experience, and all but a few were drawn in "hook, line and sinker"! Glad I could accommodate my shoe loving divas!

New shoes for the season!

So now that I am back home the rush was one to get the house decorated for Christmas. I did a few things before I left but it was seriously lacking my usual fanfare. Having a small house has certainly put a crimper on my decorating frenzy! I still have three trees but in comparison to previous years they all together are the size of one of my big trees......oh well such is life.

Skinny dining room tree

Christmas Party tonight, beautiful red draped dress from Ralph Lauren, gold shoes, yup and thanks to the Fast Metabolism Diet we are all good to go!

Busy week coming up but I will return sooner than later, hopefully! Ciao my friends and enjoy your weekend!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Far from the perfect Housewife!

A good friend of mine sent me an article today she thought I would like and she was so right and knows me so well. Its something I've done for many years and think unless something drastic happens I will continue to do so....so please read my version of my daily routine..........

For the past 28 years, I've been rising before dawn, typically around 6am. My alarm is set for this time—which is at least an hour or two before I need to be awake to ensure a productive day for myself, and also before I'm really ready to be awake—to allow me time to pack a lunch for my husband, Glenn.
To me, this has always seemed like a routine part of my day. It’s something I just do. But over the years, I’ve come to realize that this is not a common practice in today’s busy world, and I’ve also learned that people respond to the idea in some very passionate ways. Even our own daughters can't believe it.

I am consistently asked “Why?” by nearly everyone I meet who learns about my devotion to feeding the man I married 28 years ago. I’ve received looks of concern, eye rolls, tongue clucks, and outright sneers when I discuss my mornings of darkness, staggering down the hallway  to a cold  kitchen to begin the process of making a somewhat healthy breakfast and lunch.
I’ve been asked, “Well, if he can’t do it himself, why not just do it at night so you don’t have to get up?”
I’ve been told, “I would never do that for anyone.”
And finally, the most unsettling question of all has been, “What does he do for you in return?”

In response to all the inquiries and quizzical head tilts, I’ve had to do my own bit of soul searching to come up with the real answers, for myself more than for anyone else.

No, I’m not subservient. Far from it he would say. He would do it himself or buy lunch if I suddenly refused to crawl out of bed with him in the morning. No, I’m not trying to mimic some long-forgotten image of the perfect housewife.  Although I am darn close!

So what is it? Why do I feel it’s so important to rise with Glenn, prepare healthy, sustaining meals for him while he’s at work, and send him off on a positive note each day?
The answers are, it turns out, rather simple. Beyond a driving desire to ensure he's fueled by fresh produce,  fresh breads, fruits and vegetables,  and homemade salads and meals, I have found my reasons for this piece of my daily routine are really quite selfish.
First, I love being the wife who does this kind of thing. It makes me feel proud to know that he’s bragging about me to his work buddies (who are eating out every day), and I know that he’s thinking of me when he opens that lunch box to see what I’ve prepared.  I know there are some days he might shake his head.
Second, I reap the benefits of the extra hour or two I have after he’s left for work and before the rest of my day begins. The house is quiet and I make use of this time to catch up on reading, to exercise, to knit or crochet, to make plans, or to write. It’s become my favorite part of the day, because it's all about whatever I want to do.
Finally (and this is by far not the least of the reasons), I continue to rise before the sun with my hard-working man so that I can see him and offer some loving care before either of us begins our day. The few moments we spend in early morning watching the news, set the tone for everything that will transpire throughout the next 24 hours.

The feeling of connectedness and well-being that occurs in our early morning embraces carries into the evening when he returns and we have dinner together, gone are the days of running our kids to a variety of events,  and tending to their daily needs. It's a ritual that is ours alone, and that nourishes both of us in very important, fundamental ways.
In a world where everyone is so busy, so distracted, and so focused on where they're headed next and what they're getting out of everything that they do, a few moments in the early morning quiet can go a long way. Mundane rituals such as packing a lunch that doesn’t really need to be packed can help create a habit of taking a breath, looking at what (or who) is in front of you, and being grateful. The satisfaction of doing something for someone else, something that you pour your heart into, is great. Both parties thrive on that type of love.

My challenge to you now is to create your own ritual. Show someone how much you love them and see how it changes your life.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

BaBy GiRl RaG qUiLt

I haven't used my sewing machine in a very long time, so when I decided to make this rag quilt for baby Sophie, I had to read the manual once again........I know blond! Then if the darn thing wouldn't stitch the way tension!! Grrrr!!!!! I don't do well with frustration, I expect things to just work. So finally after a little toll and trouble, I managed to control my urge of throwing the darn thing in the garbage and started sewing......only to have to rip out a whole row of squares........don't worry no lives were lost........
70 backing squares, 2 short......grrr!
Guess I couldn't count.....no worries
there was still a meter left at the store!

72+ squares of batting

Thanks to my quilting guru,
there is a pattern :)
Kathy took it home for me
and made a label,
what a nice touch. Thanks GF!

After three hours of NCIS, NCIS LA,
Person of Interest,
 clipping was done and into the
washing machine, the dryer and voila!
A beauty of a rag quilt!

Double trouble Minion hats for my
GF Pam's little grandsons!
Now I am just finishing up a bear hat for a little girl........I bought the pattern from Etsy, but it needed adapting because it wasn't nearly the size I thought it should be, but then I don't crochet like the average crocheter.....why I don't know, but it never seems to be the size of the pattern, either I am too tight or too lose.....but whatever it all works out in the end.

Back at the running again, I had an awesome run on Wednesday which in the beginning I was pretty sure I was going to die, since the previous day I had the "mother" of all migraines and was feeling a tad under the weather, but I REALLY, REALLY wanted to run......and as it turned out, we were out for an hour and a half and it was fantastic. So much fun! I think I really like trail running! I was in a whole new area, so that made it even better.

Well, I guess its that time to bid you adieu......have a great weekend, and if you have a chance to go to a Remembrance Day Ceremony please keep our troops in your prayers and they all return home safely. Good Night!

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Happy Halloween!

Here it is yet again.... the end of a month that has whizzed by faster than I care to think ABOUT. Is it our age that makes time fly, or is it our busy lives, that one day turns into the next? I don't know, but it is disturbing at times. On the plus side, only a few more months till our son is home! YEA! And that, I am very thankful for. Without the aid of modern technology, I am sure this past 5 months would have been unbearable not hearing from him or knowing that he is healthy and somewhat safe, if that is even conceivable with where he is at......but it is, what it is......Be safe my son........

Happy Halloween to all of you Halloween lovers! Me not so much......seriously it's not even about cute and funny anymore, so therefore I dislike it even more than ever.....so don't mind me. But I do love pumpkins, so October and Thanksgiving are what I love about this time of year.

I have been incredibly busy these past few weeks. With working all last week, time was very limited for crafting or running. I only managed to get one run in last week, but I've been making up for it this week and I do believe I am back on track. The race weight is just about on target, thank you Haylie Pomroy, The Fast Metabolism Diet, couldn't have done it without you! The best diet ever, which I can't really say it is much of a diet, other than they tell you what you can and can't eat and duh! it is not rocket science but the chemistry of it all.

I did get the baby blankie finished and I LOVE it! It is so darn beautiful!

It is the perfect size for the cradle that I have, so into the hope chest it goes.

I have bought many fat quarters of baby flannel in pinks, yellows, greens, to start a rag quilt for Sophie. My goal is to get them cut into squares today between, my reflexology appointment and whatever gets thrown my way. I want to get it done this week to get it in the mail next week.......mmmmmm.... I wonder if I can take my sewing machine to work? Probably not going to happen, its been a tad busy these days, time to paint indoors people!

The latest batch of soap is a keeper and quite lovely. We were a little worried about the colors but really.....they are quite pretty and smell divine!

My inside joke was to send a batch of this to our hockey team (because they stink)since its their colors, but Torts is doing an amazing job of keeping these guys on a winning edge......oops ....I hope I haven't jinxed them! Keep up the great work Kes! He's one of my favourites!

Then there is this yummy looking grapefruit combination.....

And then there is the Sweet Orange............

Now I need to get started on a few hats for my GF Pam and her little grandsons.......never heard of these guys but apparently they are all the rage. Who knew!

You have to admit they are pretty darn funny, and I can sure see Lane and Kelson in these!

Well I have twisted your ear enough for one day. Hope your day is a fun one and you can do something that you truly love and enjoy! My foot reflexology is my indulgence....OMG! best thing ever! Gotta run! Be safe and take care!


Monday, October 21, 2013

Back again....

Sorry to be away for so long but I get in a forward motion and forget to come back to present day! I have been very busy, but then when aren't we when we are creating! Not to mention I am back running and trying to get in three or four days a week which is a challenge. The days aren't long enough and with not many street lights, it makes for rather dark and dangerous. So I would rather do classes of weights or what have you. Our mornings are REALLY foggy this past week, you can't see across the water most days.... but sometimes the afternoons are quite lovely but then I am usually at work so there is no running.......any who~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Apparently, as the Hubs pointed out in my last post I mentioned a "new baby" in our family, well it is in my family but my cousins new granddaughter and since we are like sisters. she's in my family just not ONE of OUR children's child. Sorry for the faux pas Lee! Any baby is fine with me. I don't care who it belongs too. I like to take ownership! And what better reason to make something, so I am.

This is the pattern I am making with the Bernat Softee Chunky yarn........this is not Sophie, the little girl I am referring too, is three weeks on Friday. But I'm starting to think that I might keep this one in my hope chest............for my own future little noodle, :*)

I had a bit of a challenge figuring out the pattern as it didn't make a lot of sense, but after a few times of starting over it is very simple, so I can mindlessly pick it up and start. But I think it is going to use more yarn than the store had in stock so unless I can get more this weekend at Michael's, I will have to edge it in a coordinating color, but it will look very pretty with a scalloped edge.

Now with winter approaching, the seas are starting to get a little rougher so the driftwood has been arriving on the beaches and I have a few ideas I would like to try, and I have a friend who would like a driftwood sailboat....... and these would look great on a scarf, vest, hat........

Driftwood Buttons

Fairy Doors, I have many ideas for making these!

Hanging Driftwood Sconce

How easy these lights would be to make. They would look great hanging around a deck for the evenings.

Driftwood Sunburst
With all the left over bits I have....... I know I can pull this one off. Well time to move on to my next project. Lunch!
 Have a wonderful day!

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Oops I did it again!

Well I have committed to another race....not a big one as far as distance, but a race none the less. The greatest distance is getting to where it starts!

Yup you got it! California here we come! My running friends from PG decided to do this marathon in honor of a near and dear friend who passed away this past year while running a race himself in Australia. So his wife got the idea wouldn't it be nice to go to the first ever marathon he ran, which was the CIM, well then a bunch of others got on board and now there are a dozen of us going. So thankfully there is a relay and that's what I will be doing, because there is no way I could run farther than 10 km at this point.

I'm going to run today hopefully for an hour and a half and yes there will be walking involved in order to go that far in this town, there are too many hills not too, because I cannot for the "love of God" run uphill for any length of time. Mostly because I am still struggling to get my aerobic level back up after being off all summer.

I'm really excited about going to Sacramento and seeing all my running buddies. I haven't been to a race with them for two years since we all went to the Okanagan Marathon and that weekend was life changing, my first half and the weekend we took the plunge and the Hubs applied and got a new job 500 miles away. So let's get started with the training. Time for toast and peanut butter, then back home to tidy up and start a new crochet project.......... there's a new baby in the family! Have a wonderful day and see you soon!

Saturday, October 5, 2013

On lighter side..............

Let's talk dessert! Who doesn't like dessert? Okay I have to admit, I am guilty of hardly EVER making anything in that department.......my kids and the hubs never requested dessert so it wasn't something I ever got into, but I do love making desserts and it loves me too, too much! So I refrain but I know lots that do and I am even willing to give this one a try because it is my favourite part of Fall. You got it! Pumpkin something!

This recipe is from the blog "I should be mopping the floor", Pumpkin Dump Cake. I changed it up a bit just so that its a little more heart healthy and it really doesn't need to be too sweet and buttery. Isn't that nice of me to think of your heart? Your welcome!


  • 1 {15 oz.} can pumpkin
  • 1 {10 oz.} can of evaporated milk
  • 1/2 cup white sugar 
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 teaspoons of pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 box of yellow cake mix
  • 1/2 cup of butter, cut into pats
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans

I always start out by breaking up my eggs and their yolks before mixing anything else in.

After your eggs are sufficiently mixed, add your pumpkin, milk, sugar and pumpkin pie spice to this.

Mix well with a whisk to make sure everything is incorporated.
Pour this mixture into a greased or sprayed 9x13 pan.

Now, dump your cake mix on top {hence the name...a lot of dumping going on}.
Spread it out to cover all of the pumpkin mixture.

Sprinkle your walnuts or pecans on top.

Dot the entire thing with butter.

Pop into a pre-heated 350-degree oven and bake for 50 minutes.

OM Gosh now serve with vanilla ice cream! And enjoy!

A week from Monday is our Thanksgiving in Canada so some of the kids and partners are coming home for the weekend and we are having our first family dinner at my mom's new house! Should be lots of fun! Its time I got out the Fall d├ęcor and put up a few pumpkins and gourds. Time to get crafty! Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

The Value of Friendship

I recently had a visit from a couple of friends whom I've known for years and it always amazes me the value of true friends. The hubs and I had the pleasure of an afternoon coffee with a friend from our old home town, Sharon and her sisters, Pat, Carol, Diane, and their mom Irene. What a great visit we had! Sharon and I lived close and often spent time together doing crafts in our weekly "Stitch and *itch Evenings" with a few of our other close friends. It was like time had stood still, a true friend is that person when time and distance do not matter.

The Heart Of Friendship

© Sandra L. Pierce
The bond of friendship is everlasting
True friends never say good-bye
There is pure truth between us
That will never die
The miles between will be rough
So carry the memories with you
Because the power of friendship
Will always carry you through
Remember, never forget
To follow what's in your heart
Because true friends
Will never be apart
We will soon see each other again
Our Lord will keep us strong till then
My heart holds you deep as friend
Praying that the Lord brings you home again
The Lord will comfort my heart
Washing away the ache with the tears that I cry
So I will say see you soon
And never good-bye

Then no sooner had Sharon and her family had left I went to pick up a dear friend from the ferry for a few days of girl time. Julie and I have been friends for 14-15 years, our boys played sports together and were partners in crime. I think if she hadn't help me with my son at times, I could have been in trouble. She has three sons!
So we spent a few days hanging out and I refreshed her memory on how to crochet. She's a smart cookie to catch on so quick. It's really hard to teach someone how to crochet because I'm a doer and I had to let her do it herself and not just take over! lol! It's always bitter sweet to say good-bye to a friend, but that's when you realize, it's not "Good-bye" but "See you soon!"
Sharing good times with good friends is the greatest joy. This is the stuff that makes life worthwhile. Whether sharing a meal together or a good conversation, there is nothing more fulfilling then spending time with friends. We must be thankful for the friendships that come our way for not all are blessed with the skills to form deep relationships. Those of us that do have friends must never take for granted the gift bestowed upon us.
So that has been my week, I am truly blessed to have so many good, good friends in my life. Time and distance just don't exist with true friends. So to all my dear friends, near and far, even if we do not speak for days, or months, just know that I value our time we had and your friendship is near and dear to my life.
Have a great week! Take time for yourself and reflect on the good things in your daily lives.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Happy Pumpkin Season!

The first day of Fall and I am seeking recipes for pumpkin to start some serious baking tomorrow. I am super stoked to make some Pumpkin Gingerbread Biscotti! Nothing better on a Fall morning than coffee and biscotti so here it is.....YUM!

And just to be super nice, I found the recipe so you too can make some too.

Pumpkin Gingerbread Biscotti
Yield: 10-12 pieces
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 1/4 cups flour
  • 4 ounces real white chocolate, chopped, or white candy melts
  • 3 tablespoons chopped walnuts
  1. Preheat the oven to 350.
  2. Whisk together the egg, sugar and baking powder on medium-high speed until the mixture falls in ribbons when you life out the whisk. Next, add in the pumpkin puree, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves, salt and vanilla and whisk.
  3. Carefully fold in the flour.
  4. Shape the dough into a flat log about 3″ wide by 8″ long.
  5. Bake the flat log for 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Remove from the oven and lower the temperature to 300 degrees.
  6. Let the dough cool down for 15 minutes before cutting into 1/2 inch slices. Put the slices on the baking sheet and bake for another 30 minutes, turning them over half way through.
  7. Let cool completely.
  8. Melt the white chocolate and dip half of the biscotti into it. Sprinkle the walnuts on top. Lay them on wax paper until the white chocolate hardens and then serve.
My friend Julie is coming for a visit and crocheting lesson, so I think these will be a "good thing" for us to nibble on while we're crocheting.
I love the Fall so I'm looking forward to dressing for the cooler weather and the russet oranges and browns.......

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Last few shots of The City by the Bay...

The old lighthouse is still standing on Alcatraz but its getting pretty worn out. Along with the rest of the buildings. It's a shame it couldn't be restored but it would cost way too much money.  I am sure even with all the tourist money, it's not even close to the repairs. I imagine one day it will just be a massive ruin until a developer comes along and builds an island condo complex on the Rock.

A few of the ruined buildings look like sets out of an old movie......and I guess they are!
We didn't go through the doors of Saks, as I didn't win the lottery before we left.
We did frequent here though............

A little easier on the wallet, Nordstroms, another lottery store.....and as hard as I tried to find earrings down there, and a new purse, where do I find them? That's right.....right here at home......go figure!

The biggest damage had to be at DSW, and there's no hard feelings about that.

Well back to work tomorrow, its been a normal week other than the non-stop house cleaning! Excuse me but where did my maid disappear too? The rains will be starting this weekend, and who knows when they will quit, apparently there is a storm brewing off the coast. Time to get out the yarn! I did a couple of runs this week. The second one was a wee bit of a bummer, as my legs were sore, but I am better now. Doing my other classes also this week, so should start seeing some signs of fitness returning.

The biggest change of all this week is....................

that's right, we have curls and an inch cut off. I don't think my son will mind, it only needed to be tidied up. He's doing fine, if not a tad bored but I like bored.....So now that we are well into September its about time I got out some Fall decor, seems like I just packed it all away! You know me and pumpkins so I'm getting together a few of my favourite pumpkin recipes......I'll share them with you soon. But for now I have my pumpkin patch shoes to carry me into Fall.

Totally cute and comfy too!

Well time to shut it down for the night. Peace to all, have a good week!

Sunday, September 15, 2013

San Francisco was a blast!

Back from the Bay City, beautiful weather the whole time, lots of sites but not as many as we had hoped. It's very time consuming trying to see a whole city. Having a car might have made things more accessible but then parking is a major problem. Oh well the girls and I had fun. We shopped, oh did we shop! DSW has to be the best place on earth for shoes! Yup, 10 pairs between the three of us........not too shabby. We took cable cars, trolley cars, buses and cable trains. I think that's what they were called. A crazed taxi driver, who made us feel truly welcome to the streets of San Francisco. OMGoodness! What a ride from downtown that was! Hilarious! Really funny guy!

We did a Hop on Hop off bus tour and managed to stretch it over two days. Made the round trip the first day and hopped off the second day and shopped around Haight Ashbury. Although I was quite young in 1967, I do remember the "Summer of Love", the hippies, the sit-ins, the psychedelic pictures, tie-dyed clothes, the flowers in the hair. The drugs they could have done without, many were ruined mentally and the effects were passed along to their children, but that's another day......We made it to see the Painted Ladies and I have to say I was a little disappointed. I really thought they would look spectacular. There were far prettier houses but I guess its more the fact they survived the earthquake and the fire.

I really thought they would have been painted
brighter colors but they are pastel colors.....oh well
there went that vision......

The sites of San Francisco are amazing, and I guess the sunny skies made it even more beautiful. I'm very glad I went with the girls and maybe we can do it again sometime.

Street Singer,
 who sang very much like Neil Diamond

The drivers were nice enough to take our pictures on
 the back of the trolley car,
such great guys, really made the ride fun!
Down at Pier 39
the infamous prison


The girls at Union Square, coordinating

Old School House on the island

Well I think that's enough for now...... In total I took over 200 photos, with three cameras, crazy but fun. I love taking pics of old buildings and the curves and angles....they are probably boring for some but they look so different when you're up close and personal.

By the time we were flying home we were some tired, my feet were sore, so it took a few days but I did my first run today, since breaking my foot and it felt really good! Yea! Thank goodness. It could take a while to get back up to speed but it felt so good to get back out there. I will have to gage myself and take it slow for the first week. So here's hoping! I'll be back soon with a few more of my favourite photos! Have a good night! Ciao!