On This Date: in 1967 and 1969

This morning thinking about the cold (the forecast here is a high of 1 and low of -10 today and colder yet tomorrow), the end of the year, and the beginning of the new year led me to go look at my parents' old calendars again. I posted about them before here. I was wondering what they were up to on December 30th.

In 1967 the 30th was also on a Saturday.
And, it was cold.  So states my Dad, "Cold." He notes it was -15 degrees.

He went bowling as was their recreation on Saturdays (and Thursdays?) for many years. I'm not sure if in 1967 my Mom was bowling on Saturdays yet.  I would have only been 3 and was the youngest of 6. 

The car froze and had to be pulled home.  I'd love more details here.  Who pulled it home?  And he would have obviously had to walk to get a ride from someone.  No cell phones.....

1969 was even colder and a terribly sad occurrence is noted.

-16 degrees 

Dad notes that 3 kids froze south of Coleridge.  Mom adds "to death".  
I can imagine her worry about us kids.

I tried doing a newspaper archive search to find out more about that, but didn't get very far.

Stay safe if you are out in the cold.


I hope God sends so many beautiful blessings to all of you in 2018!!

Happy New Year!!!

A Scrappy Advent Calendar

 Well here is the opened and counted down Advent Calendar I posted about here. I took pictures of it before I sent it off.

 It has all been opened and taking up it's residence in my friend's home. ♥

It is a complete hodgepodge.  And I love it that way. :)

"Hodgepodge" is a great word, isn't it?

I made all the tags by collaging bits on book pages, then I decided to back them in vintage music pages.  I used hymnal pages and words along with vintage wall paper. 

I used a tag punch to create the tags from the larger collaged pieces.  Then I added the buttons and words.

So each envelope (that you can see in this post) held a tag and a "dangle".  I wasn't sure what else to call them as they aren't quite ornaments.  They are though, indeed, dangles.

There is a little of everything included in the dangles.  Vintage belt buckles, rhinestone pins, buttons, new beads, silk sari ribbon, crocheted bits, ball chain, vintage jewelry pieces, a soldered necklace pendant, and on.....

With all the little bits and what-not that I have, I could make a lot of Advent Calendars!

I hope this inspires you to make one for yourself or a friend! 

Merry Christmas!!

Well, the day has passed, but the season is upon us and we can celebrate until Epiphany!  I think the days after Christmas are the best days.  There is a relaxing and letting go of all the "things to think about" and you can spend time in the stable by the manger.  Every year I strive to grow in my understanding of this mystery. (Inch by inch we grow!) He was born as he was, into poverty and humble surroundings, so that we can find Him in our own poverty and places where we lack. So my striving then turns more to just being.  Being who I am and acknowledging all those places where there is still darkness and his light needs to shine. Revealing those places to him is your gift to him.

Maybe your advent was too full of worldly things to really prepare for his coming, but it's not too late.  You can still stop and look around your own heart and see where that little sweet baby is nudging and shining new light.  

Isn't that just so very beautiful?  

We took our family picture back in October for our Christmas card. Yesterday, I was out with my husband gathering firewood and walked in the same place as this picture was taken.  So funny to think of how it changes so dramatically. Yesterday is was only 6 degrees here!!  We'd talked about getting wood ready when our fall days were in the 60s, but apparently there wasn't enough sport in that for us!  Plus I gave my husband a chain saw sharpener for Christmas so sharpening the saw became a Christmas Day project. 

This is a favorite "outtake" from our picture taking session!

Peace to you all!


I am avoiding more work that needs to be done here so thought I'd edit a few pictures from our son's college graduation this past Saturday.  What a great day and event to celebrate!

There he is on the big screen as we were too far away to actually see him on stage, but for a dot.  I have to admit I took a few pictures of other bearded graduates before he got up there!  All of us were having trouble identifying him.  "There he is!" One of us would say and I'd click a picture.  "No, that's not him!"  And again...and again....until "THAT'S HIM!!" (All unknown bearded graduates have been deleted from my computer, ha!!)

The whole ceremony was so nice.  The Star Spangled Banner was sung beautifully and the Chancellor asked everyone to stand and remove their hats and there wasn't a peep from the crowd until she was done singing.  Then after the diplomas were handed out he asked different groups to stand.  What graduates were from Nebraska?  What graduates were from other states in the USA?  What graduates were from other countries?  (LOTS!)  What graduates were first generation college graduates?

The beauty of the freedom we have here to get a good education (or to not go to college if that's your choice) was evident this day. I have to say, that as big of a proponent of education that I am, I am just as big of a proponent for those choosing to not go to college.  That choice needs to be respected. A person's value does not come from their degree.

 That freedom filled me with gratitude! And you knew the whole stadium was filled with it too.

UNL stadium in the background.

A graduate and his five sisters. ♥

Three down, three to go!
(I had no idea I would be so emotional, but I was.)

We stopped at a favorite Pub of Will's for a celebratory drink and ended up staying there to eat.  We had the place almost to ourselves.

I still have a can of Guinness in the cupboard from before Jim died.  A favorite of his.  (Now of Will's too.)

Irish food!  Lots of potato dishes on the menu and so good.

Such a fun and cozy place to hang out for awhile!

Of course now the job hunt is on in the mechanical engineering field, but in the mean time he will be perfecting his pretzel making and bread baking skills and we will be his test tasters. :) 

Now, back to Christmas preparations.

An Advent Calendar Preview

A long time ago my sister in law emailed me a picture of an advent calendar hanging from a branch. I saved the image (I'm sorry I don't know who was the source) and finally this year I was able to make one of my own!

For now though, you just get a preview as this was all mailed off to a friend and I don't want to reveal more than she has already seen. :) 

I found these thin, tall envelopes at Hobby Lobby and thought they were pretty perfect. They open at the top, not the side. Sewing my own envelopes would have been more perfect, but that time thing you know....

The branch is actually a bunch of bittersweet vines that all grew together and when I went out to find a good branch for my project, I realized how wonderful the vines would be instead. 

The red "ribbons" are actually fabric scraps from a rag ball intended for use in a rag rug from the 1930s or 40s.  I bought a big box of authentic rag balls years and years ago at an auction.  I pull of little bits from them here and there.  The red ball is almost gone now because it's such a great shade of red.

This is definitely a scrappy kind of project (the content of the envelopes) so those scrappy ties are just right.

Some day I may make one for myself to keep, but then there wouldn't be a surprise in opening up the envelopes would there? Unless I made it in August or so because I'd forget what I had in there in 3-4 months easily!  Any of you have that problem?  Good grief I'm forgetful.

I hope your advent is starting off full of peace. 

Time to Perform!

Today, our senior daughter will be performing in the One Act district competition.  They have a large cast and crew and have a great performance of The Audition!

Our daughter plays the old, tired, hard-working mother who doesn't care about her daughter's role in an upcoming play.  She's actually pretty scary!

I played old women in high school productions too, hmmm...

These two are so proud of their big sister!

A Sweet Little One Year Old

Our youngest granddaughter turned one at the beginning of November!

I thought I'd share a few of her "one year old" photos I took of her. (There were a lot more pictures!)

She moves and she moves quickly so it was a challenge to get her smiling at the camera.  One year olds are busy, busy, busy!

She is so sweet.

And she has lots of teeth already. :)

If you'd like to reminisce with me, here are a few pictures from last year and Bridget's one year old pictures (our second granddaughter)  I don't think I ever posted our oldest granddaughter's one year pictures here on my blog.  

Walking is just around the corner for her!

~happy monday~

Saturday Digest

It's been a long time since I've done a digest post.  It's time. :)

►I took this photo at my brother and sister in law's place in August.  They have some chickens, goats, a few pigs, a horse and a few calves.  The girls always love to see their menagerie.  These Guernsey calves are so photogenic!

►STICKS, folks, sticks. Here and so cool!  You may remember how much I enjoy sticks from this post.  It wasn't until half way through the video that I realized the artist had a band saw there cutting the sticks to the size he wanted.  Vision is what he had.  But maybe more importantly, he had the confidence to see it through.

►This year-long embroidery project is inspiring.  If you scroll all the way down through the pictures she posted you get a wonderful visual representation of the encouraging phrase "just start".

I've mentioned Ann Wood here before but seriously, her email in my in box is a bright spot of inspiration.

►I just ordered Randy's Christmas gift to me.  ;)  After I placed the order, I found myself just smiling and so happy.  I told the girls, "He'll enjoy giving this to me so much!"  They sort of laughed. 

Scene and Story: A Bare Light Bulb

Scene and Story crept up on me.  Better late....!

Earlier in October we were given the chance to visit my husband's old high school through his sister in law who works at the school.  It was so much fun to see where he went to school!  Only a few rooms of the school are in use now.  Most of the rooms are either used for storage of physical things or for holding memories. 

This closet really caught my attention.  Not updated at all as some of the other rooms had been.  A bare light bulb lighting the narrow space.   

It's always interesting to me, what gets left behind.  Pretty sure none of this will be used in the current active classrooms.

"What now?" hangs in the air.  Much like the bare bulb.

I'm linking up with Scene and Story here.

Photoshop Exploration

I just finished (until I decide to go tweak something) editing some photos for a friend and my daughter's senior pictures.  I have a couple more photo projects waiting, but I needed to just explore photoshop for fun for a bit.

So I present to you my daughter, Bonnie, in three of Pantone's popular colors for Fall 2017!  Autumn Maple, Navy Peony, and Tawny Port.

I've been wanting to learn how to do this for some time, so thank you to Benny Qibal and this youtube tutorial!

I love the effect of simple solid color blocking!  It's because of the new lighting I have that I posted about here, that I could make this effect work well.  I have so much to learn, but the learning process is wonderful.

~have a great Monday~

Autumn Drieds

My obsession with dried flowers, pressed flowers, and seed pods continues.  I hope it's contagious and you are enjoying them too!

I pressed these a couple of years ago, maybe just last summer.  I think they are from a flowing succulent I had in the tank garden.  This fall, as I started to use my pressed flowers, I thought these would really look nice framed.  

I had the frame already that I picked up at Target because it just seemed "so right" for something.  So this is that something!  I used navy mat board for the backing and it was very easy to put it together.  Not so easy to photograph!  Glass reflects, and it reflects everything.  Sometimes you can use that to your advantage, but mostly, it's just tricky.

Recently I picked up this old frame at Cottonwood Antiques in Columbus.  I almost talked myself out of it because I have other old frames....  This one had a parrot needlepoint in it that didn't really fit.  And it needed laundering.  So now, it's clean, but I'm not sure what I'll do with it. (And, it's kind of wonky looking.)  The frame had another calling. 

I painted some burlap fabric with navy craft paint and then glued on some seed pods.  I love this so much! I believe it will stay up year round until I do something else with the frame because as you can guess, this won't store well!  They are secure, but they won't take anything being stacked on them.  But, that's fine.  Isn't that part of the beauty of these seed pods?  You can toss them.  There will be more.

On this board: Wild Cucumber Vine, Asiatic Iris, Blackberry Lily, Love in the Mist, Fennel, Sunflower, a skeleton from a Tomatilla, Hyacinth Bean Vine, Button Weed, and one I can't remember.

• You can see more decorating with seed pods and drieds here.
• I needlefelted some of the acorns in the top picture and I bought some from Lisa here.
• You can read more about the little paper house here.
 • The crocheted stones were a gift from a friend. ♥


Playing in the Ditch

I've posted milkweed pictures before and I will most certainly post them again.  They are magical and beautiful.

We had a little bit of time on Sunday to stop and play a bit in a ditch on a dirt road.  I had tried on Saturday, but was pulled right down into the ditch when I pulled over on to the deceptively somewhat dry looking road side.  I was able to drive out with our four wheel drive engaged, but very slowly and very carefully.

Thinking another day was needed for things to dry, I waited for Sunday to try again.

Ditches, creeks, and milkweeds.  ♥

(But we were careful for mud, itch weed, and thistles.  Exploring doesn't come without risks, ha!)

These girls are always ready to play and explore. And, thankfully, so is my husband.

Now I have a couple more bags of fluffy seeds and pods.  I don't really do too much with them, except put them in a jar to enjoy. (And plant them!) I used one pod once to needle felt a baby Jesus in.  My own milkweeds that I had in my tank garden got all dark and almost oily and I had to pull them.  They apparently prefer growing in the wild!

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