Monday, December 20, 2010

Cookie Day

Cookie baking day was this past Saturday at my house.  I bought the kids their aprons each year they started baking cookies, so Mikey got his this year (he'll grow into it!)  That's Briana, 12, AJ, 6, Will, 3, Mom, Mikey, 6 months,  and Grandma.
Mikey just woke up from a nap and is cuddling with big sister.

And Mikey with his apron :-)!

And today I attended a cookie exchange at a friend's house -- it was wonderful visiting with everyone, drinking coffee, eating cookies - just a really nice, relaxing morning.  Thanks, Ginny!

Blessings:  Grandchildren and great friends to help us through these tough holidays.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Catching up

Here it is December and I've been among the missing since the end of October.  Time to catch up on the happenings here.

On All Saints Sunday (the first Sunday of November), our church has a ceremony to recognize all those we've lost in the past year.  All the kids came down and we filled the front pew.  Stephanie lit a candle while I put this white rose on the altar.  I provided a picture of Bill and it was projected on a screen at the front of the church.  It's a very nice ceremony -- but very difficult for all of us.  I was given the rose to take home after church and it stayed this beautiful for more than a week!

We spent all of November driving back and forth to Madison again.  Steve's cancer came back in October and the treatment this time was radiation -- not just a simple zap, but an elongated zap that took 35 minutes.  He endured this five days a week for 5-1/2 weeks.  I drove two days a week, Kim drove one day a week and two of his friends filled in the other days.  It was exhausting for everyone, but especially for Steve.  He is home now waiting for the swelling in his brain to go down.  All the gains he made last year after his stroke have been erased.  The radiation really beat him up this time and he will have to start all over getting his left side to cooperate.  He is walking with a footed cane right now.  He will probably be getting some home health aides to stay with him during the day while Kim works, but this week I stayed a couple of days with him.  They have 3 dogs to take care of, and we just want to make sure he doesn't fall.  It tires me out because they live 50 minutes away from me, but I've also enjoyed spending the day with him. We don't know what happens next -- he'll meet with the doctor in Madison in a few weeks, but he won't have an MRI until January, so we won't even know if the radiation worked til then.  He and Kim will be going on vacation with three other couples next week -- a trip they've planned for a year and I hope they will be able to relax and enjoy themselves.

Now that the Christmas season is upon us, I've had to shift gears and take care of business.  I've managed to finish the Christmas card list.  I'm sending only to those that didn't know that Bill died (he used to write notes to many people every year in the cards).  I've cut the list by at least half and next year I plan to send only a few to the people that I actually know that live out of town.  I find that sending Christmas cards is not an enjoyable activity, so by paring it down, I can write to the few that I like to keep in touch with and make it more meaningful.
These are going in the mail tomorrow!

I have hired a cleaning lady!  The goal is to have her do my weekly cleaning and I can spend my time cleaning out!  I haven't had time to do much of anything lately -- and I haven't even sewn in months.  She cleaned for the first time this week and oh my how heavenly it was to come home to a clean house.  Today was the first day I've had to do anything around the house, so I took advantage of it -- I emptied two Rubbermaid containers of fabric.  Kris keeps her fabric collection in Rubbermaid containers and it works for her; so I tried it, but it does not work for me.  I find that if I can't see my fabric, I don't know what I have.  So, I put the fabric back into my big cabinet and my side cabinets of the Hoosier in the kitchen and put the quilts that I had in the big cabinet into the Rubbermaid containers instead.  I can store the small quilts in them and keep them in the basement and out of the way.  I have a few more containers to switch yet, but made pretty good progress today.  I also pressed a pile of fabric that had been washed, but not put away.  Feels like progress!
So, to celebrate, I actually did some sewing today:
Kris has decided we're going to do Bonnie Hunter's latest mystery.  I haven't been too enthusiastic because I have so many unfinished projects and no time to sew, but not only did she insist I play, she cut the strips for part 1 from her own stash -- all I had to do was sew them together and cut them into parts!  Can't beat that.  Not only that, but I cut some light squares today to add to some dark squares to make 4 patches as a leader/ender project while I work on the mystery. And, I fired up the ole Bernina which hasn't been used in ages (I've been piecing with the Brother for the past year or two!)

Quilt friends - specifically Kris!
My health -- there's a lot of stomach flu and strep throat going around my family and friends lately and so far I've managed to avoid it -- and hopefully so has Steve. 
Get well wishes to Deb and to Steph -- enough is enough!