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Take a walk in Blue Bell Woods listen to the sounds around you, of bird song and bees. Smell the flowers and the scent of Spring in the air. Every year is a new beginning and every day a blessing

"Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts." (Colossians 3:15a NIV)I would love to hear from you, if you don't have a blog you can still comment, join google it's free. I appreciate hearing from you.

Monday, December 29, 2014

A New Year coming 2015........................

Time marches on, without a calender one day would be much the same as another. We would mark time by the seasons. We are commanded by a calender that January 1st begins a new year. So we sheep like, follow along with that. What does it mean to me?????
Well I actually like to have a clean slate so to speak. I like the idea of starting over. This year, 2014 has not been good financially for us for many reasons. Having a new start makes me pull up my knickers and take a deep breath and be ready to start over. New ideas, new  resolutions. Do I keep them? sometimes.!
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I keep a day planner. I write everything in it. I have already got mine ready, I have all my birthdays and anniversaries, special events etc already in place. I have my passwords, my phone numbers and all that. Also I have my goals for the year. When the year ends I can see what was accomplished and what I want to aim for in the New Year to come. I seldom get to cross off everything but this year I did manage to cross of a couple and one was weight. Still have a long way to go but at least I had a positive loss at the end of the year. So what for this year.?
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Well, I must loose another 10 pounds at least and I am ready to get going. I put back 3 after the holidays and so that makes 13 but that was pretty good actually. I lost 20pounds and put back 3..........a new start now.
We had some great walks and days out this summer with the kids. I want more of that this year. We all enjoyed the exercize and activities.
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I have enjoyed my birds. I want to get some of the pictures printed and framed. I want to redo the theme in my living room without spending a lot of money. I don't have any to begin with and one goal is to pay down debt.
I need to cut back on shopping..........I spend too much. Food being the biggest expense. Now Dan is not living here we can certainly do cheaper meals. He didn't like the same things we do. I love spicy foods so we can do curries and chilli's and so on. I want to use more of my recipes in the tons of books I have. I love recipe books. So my annual resolution of doing one new thing every week is going to be reinstalled.
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I also want to get back into quilting. I have so much fabric I must use some up. I spent most of this year painting. I want to do that too but in order to refurbish the living room I need to sew cushion covers and make some lap quilts. I want brighter and lighter colours than this one I already have.
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I would also like to take some time and go to the Upper Peninsula for a few days with the kids. Take Reina and Tristen. It could be during the week while Gerry is working so he can watch the dogs. Have Laura get some days off work and just go.............I love it up there. Have missed it very much. Maybe go see Danielle for a day and then see how far we can go from there.
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So anyway............as I said, I love that clean slate. A new book to write in. What will this year bring? It will be 4 years in February since we lost Alexandra. It is still dream like to me. I can not wrap my head around it that she is not coming back.
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 Tristen is 5 now and a challenge. I am sure he has ADHD and it is a real challenge for us at the moment. I need to learn more about that and again, this is a new start for everything. So I will take a deep breath and resolve to do better.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Done and Dusted.........

That's it then, over for another year. Christmas that is. It is always a lot of work leading up to the big day. When it's over and everyone is gone home it's sort of a let down in a way. Now what?
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Christmas morning Tristen helped Granddad to distribute the gifts. After that it was rip and shred. Went quite quickly first time around. Jason was with us from Christmas Eve to Boxing Day when he had to get back for his cats. We opened our gifts then. Tristen was quite restrained he had no problem waiting for us to be ready. Coffee comes first even at Christmas. Also it keeps things under control somewhat. He was up at his usual time and was not nagging immediately to open stuff and I am glad of that.
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Gerry and Jason had to help with the putting of things together
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Jason bought Tristen some Lincoln Logs. "Just what I always wanted" says Tristen.
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When the gifts were open Tristen had a short time to play before Laura and Reina arrived. Then we did it all again. They got their gifts and Tristen got a few more. Next to arrive were Gabrielle, Tony and Cooper. They got their gifts and then Tristen and Cooper and Reina played.
We had dinner sooner than expected, around 3pm. We enjoyed that as always. I did a roast turkey, mashed potatoes, roast potatoes, baby carrots, broccoli, brussel sprouts and two dishes of stuffin.......and gravy. My most favourite dinner. I don't usually do a dessert because everyone is stuffed.
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The poodle girls all got a gift bag with chewies and treats and a toy each.
We had champagne with dinner and after that we made some "snowballs" That in case you don't know is egg nog, brandy and 7up. Yummy. Gabrielle enjoyed the Champagne.
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After all was cleared away, the kids all played games.
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I think they enjoyed that. Gabby and Tony spent the night so no problems with driving home. Me, well I just sat and relaxed, it was a busy day.
Robert left to go work on his car and Gerry took Laura and Reina home when they were ready. A good day I think.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Reina's Birthday...........................................

Saturday, today, we celebrated Reina's birthday. It was officially on the 11th but we had to wait until the weekend. My gift was an adventure. Reina likes my adventures. Today's was to Pahl's country store out in Buckley. They have a pumpkin patch in the Fall and we went there one time to a hay ride. Anyway today was a trip into the woods to Santa's house.
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Today was 40 degrees, warm for this time of year and perfect for being outside. It was foggy from the mists coming up from whats left of the snow. We found our way though. We were just in time to catch the next tractor ride. Off to visit Santa.
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We do not encourage our kids to "believe" in Santa. That is not to say we do not indulge in make believe. That is fun and does no harm. We were explaining how the legend of Santa came to be, we told about St Nicholas and that he was such a good man and that  Santa is based on him. Tristen asked if he was still around and I said no he died a long time ago.
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Here are Reina and Tristen waiting to go in and see Santa.
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They did not really get enthused about Santa. Tristen said "you are not Santa, Santas is dead" I had to explain what we had talked about, I think Santa was a little put out haha. Santa said "No I'm not I am right here" Anyway, they were entertained and went on to hot cocoa and marshmallows. They got into that.
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I even enjoyed the marshmallows and I am not keen. It was smokey and smelled lovely.
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We came back to visit the barn where they had small animals to pet. Goats and a pig, a pony and donkey and the roosters. A couple of barn cats were available to be petted.
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They had a nativity in the straw, a nice touch.
The next stop was the craft house and they got to choose one of three things offered. Needless to say they chose to decorate cookies.
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Apparently Tristens tasted pretty good
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After that we went home to have cake and ice cream and for Reina to open her gifts. She was anxious to get back by that time.
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Aunt Laura bought her a new set for her Pet Shop and so Tristen went home with them and they spent the rest of the day playing with that. Maybe they will sleep better tonight, they sure didn't get much sleep last night. Laura had to work so Reina spent the night. She slept in Tristens bed with him. He came in our room at 3am and said he and Reina were hungry..............I looked at the clock with unbelieving eyes. "Geeeeetttttttt baaaaackkkkk to bed" I said as the dogs all protested being awakend. He did, but they were up by 6am. At least we can sleep in tomorrow.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Time for glitter...............

After Thanksgiving Tristen went to his auntie Laura for the weekend. That left us with the whole weekend to redo everything. What I do is to take out all of my ornaments and pack them away. Then I replace with Christmas ornaments. I have collected a lot over the years. I gave away all the really old ones that mean anything to me. I passed them on to Laura.
It takes forever to pack everything away. Then decide what I want where. The last year I didn't want to put up the tree, so we bought a small one. I was able to put that out on the back deck this year.
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The tree is up and decorated. Tristen helped
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We didn't decorate last year because he was into everything. This year he actually did help. He is five now. Its a lot of work to decorate the whole house, I enjoy it but, it gets harder to take the plunge. The next picture is our new entrance.
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I had to move the chair out of the front room with the tree going in there. I have small trees in each room. On the other wall is the desk and coat tree.
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The kitchen has not got a whole lot going but I covered as much as I could with cheer.
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The dining room has a lot more surfaces to decorate and all of them are covered with stuff

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The living room naturally has even more surface to decorate. Since I took all these pictures we found another box of goodies downstairs. So at some point I will do a few updates. Bear with me here, way too many pictures.........

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The front room, where the tree is........
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Those pictures did not come out very well. I will do another post later on some inexpensive decorating ideas. I have done more since I took these. I have to do the front porch and back deck next but its been so cold I didn't get out there yet.
I also have to iron and put back the doilies etc........that might not happen haha.