Monday, December 31, 2007

Seattle's Space Needle

Here's a link to the Space Needle in Seattle.  They'll be shooting New Year's fireworks off it at 12 midnight Pacific Standard Time.  I'm not sure what you'll see with the cam but you might see some of the magnificent show they put on.   This cam is actually mounted on the Needle and you can look around in all directions. Right at this moment, of course, it's only 1pm and sunny here in western Washington.  But for those of you on the east coast who are night owls or early could check it out at the appropriate time.  And for those across the pond, if you check it out on Tuesday before 7or may see part of the show.

Something to Think About

I got this statement as part of an email from my friend Lynnette.  It really hit home with me, as far as past relationships are concerned.  I know many out there in J-Land are struggling in relationship issues. We need to remember to take care of ourselves in the new year.... So let me just take a moment to share this thought with you;


Monday Morning Question

monday morning question from Krissy;


I thought about asking a profound question, like what your New Year's resolutions were going to be, then decided to settle on something much lighter.  Here goes: 

Why does Princess Leia, of Star Wars, have cinnamon buns on the sides of her head?

I'm not going to spoil it by giving you my answer, b/c I want to see what you have to say.  I'll take some of your answers and post them in my next entry or the one after that!

I want to hear what you have to say. 

Why does Princess Leia have cinnamon buns on the sides of her head?

My answer: Princess Leis has those twisted cinnamon buns on the side of her head because that's where Luke Skywalker kept the keys to his space ship.  It took two keys to run the thing and he put one in each side of her head. 

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Happy New Year

I just want to take this opportunity to wish you all a very Happy New Year!

**For those of you who have been ill this past year~I wish you good health

**For those of you who have been in chaos~I wish you peace

**For those of you without a job~I wish you employment

**For those of you who have lost loved ones or friends this past year~I wish you comfort

**For those of you searching for new beginnings~I wish you success

**For those of you who have been lost this past year~I wish you to be found

May 2008 be the best year ever~not only a new year, but a clean slate on which to chart your path.   Blessings........Linda



Alaskan Clydesdale

Only in Alaska ....... This guy raised an abandoned moose calf with his horses, and believe it or not, he has trained it for lumber removal and other hauling tasks.

 Given the 2,000 pounds of robust muscle, and the splayed, grippe hooves, he claims it is the best work animal he has.  

He says the secret to keeping the moose around is a sweet salt lick, although during the rut he disappears for a couple of weeks, but always comes home.... impressive!                        



Friday, December 28, 2007

Tragedy on Christmas Eve

It took place in Carnation, Washington, 20 miles east of Seattle.  A sleepy little rural's all so horrible...4 adults and 2 little children killed at grandpa and grandma's house on Christmas Eve by a 29 year old daughter of the older couple and her boyfriend.  They've been arrested and have confessed to these heinous crimes. 

On going coverage can be found at ;

I can just imagine...the warm house, the food prepared,  all the gifts under the Christmas tree, the excitment of those two little ones...and then these two monsters walk in and later...6 lives have been snuffed out.

The crime was not discovered until Wednesday morning, when the mother, Judith Anderson, failed to show up for her shift at the local Post Office.  A co-worker went looking for her.

What makes people so evil ?  How could this 29 year old woman, be a part of killing her parents and her brother, his wife and their precious little children? 


Thursday, December 27, 2007

Better Late Than Never

I was going to post this on Christmas Eve but forgot to do it before I went to my brother's place.  As I was running down thru my "Favorites" this evening I came across it. Enjoy...

Bad Day at the Office

I got this yesterday from one of the PBX operators at the hospital I retired from.  I wish I would have seen this video 6 years ago, I would known better how to handle situations at that last job I had. Ohh, to be able to go back in time.  LOL !!

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Food, gifts, kids, snow & a leaf blower

They say the second or third time is a charm.  I did a complete entry early today and lost it all. I was so upset I did laundry and then went shopping.  This time I’m writing it in WORD and then will copy & paste it into my journal.



Well, Christmas is over for another year.  I think I had the most wonderful holiday season ever…or least for a long time.


Monday afternoon Bob & I went to my brother & sister in law’s house for dinner & gifts.  All three of my beautiful nieces were there, with their families, except for the youngest who is still single.  She’s the one that flew in from Denver on Saturday.  She’s there going to graduate school, getting her Master’s Degree.  We had a great time around the dinner table (9 adults and 4 little ones). And the food was delicious…  After dinner the little ones opened their gifts, one at a time with lots of oohing & ahhing.  Each adult had brought a $10 gift good for a male or female.  We drew numbers, picked agift or stole someone else’s gift.  When it was time for me to pick…the only gift left was one I’d brought (a beautiful calendar from Alaska) so I had to steal this great set of scissors from my niece Janna.  She was so disappointed & when she opened the calendar she said, “oh well I needed a calendar too.”   I really didn’t really need the scissors, so when  Janna wasn’t looking, I gave them to my sister in law and told her to go put them under Janna’s pillow.  Bob got a set of 3 stick up touch lights and he gave me one of those so, I didn’t come away empty handed.  LOL


Tuesday morning, my son Jim came over for mom’s special breakfast meal and gift exchanging.   His friend Carrie was going to join us but she ended up staying with her mom on Christmas Eve, so I sent her gifts with Jim as they were meeting up later Tuesday afternoon. 


Around 12:30pm, after Jim left…Bob and I took off for Enumclaw (about a 45 minute drive) in a heavy snowstorm.   It was sticking to the ground but fortunately not to the road.  I must say it was very beautiful as we made our way to the home of Bob’s youngest daughter,  June, and her family.   Within an hour after we arrived there were a total of 16 adults, 2 pre-teens, little Lance and two 6 month old little girls.   June’s in laws are from South Carolina, so the menu was slightly different than what we here in the Pacific Northwest are used to.  There was the traditional turkey and spiral ham, stuffing, cranberries, 10 pounds of mashed potatoes, corn, and then the black eyed peas, sweet potato casserole and two gravies (one for the mashed potatoes and one for the stuffing.)  For dessert we chose between pumpkin, pecan & apple pie….homemade cookies, homemade almond roca, Russell Stover chocolates and a big box of chocolate covered cherries.


Bob’s oldest grand daughter, Heather, had to be back in Orting at work at 5:30pm so about 4:20pm we started passing out presents.  I gave all 5 of his older grand children (including the two in Pasadena, CA) photo albums and he gave the three here in this area, Old Navy gift cards.  We never found a newborn Cabbage Patch doll for little Marin, but we did get her a little soft doll that’s even machine washable.  Maybe she’ll get the Cabbage Patch for her first birthday in June.  Bob got Lance a remote controlled truck and some sort of a Planet Earth figurine.  I found a cute kid’s dinnerware set for him and of course a few Matchbox Cars.


When we finally left there and headed back to my place we were very tired, it had been a long day.   But it had been a wonderful day….our third Christmas celebration in four days.


I must have been a good girl this last year because I got some very nice gifts.  Bob’s daughters are all very good to me…Hope down in Pasadena sent me the first season DVD set of “The Office.”  Paula & her family gave me a very cool black and white matted print of the first Narrows Bridge (aka Gallopin Gertie~it was only in place from July until November of 1940 before it collapsed),   June and her family gave me a DVD set of the first season of “Happy Day’s and from his oldest daughter Cheryl we both got a gift card for the Olive Garden.  


Speaking of gift cards; I made out well~one from Regal Cinema’s, Target, Applebees, Starbucks, Half Price Books and 3 from Trader Joes.   WOW !!  But, my most unusual & probably the best gift was from Bob.  My neighbor, Mr Newton, that moved to Missouri used to take care of all the leaves that blew into my yard and carport with his leaf blower…well the leaf blower moved to Missouri too.  Bob found a lightweight electric one for me.  I was so thrilled.  I have one of those 100 foot long orange power cords so shouldn’t have a problem keeping the leaves cleaned up.  Gee, I wonder if I can use it for dusting here in the house, too?


This afternoon, I went out and stocked up on some Christmas gift bags…Target has some beautiful ones…all 50% off.   I did grab up two boxes of Christmas cards too, I have enough on hand for about 10 years, but these were so pretty I couldn’t resist.   I also bought Debbie Macomber’s newest paperback released today, “The Manning Sisters.”  It’s too is available at Target and no doubt Wal Mart.


After all that rich food….I’ve made a big pot of vegetable soup this afternoon.  I just had two bowls of it and it tasted very good. 


I’m way behind on reading journals and hope to get to each of you soon….until next time, Linda

Monday, December 24, 2007

Still Need Something For Christmas Morning Breakfast?

I call this Ruthie's Egg Dish because I got it from my friend Ruth who lives in Hoodsport, WA.  I've eaten it many mornings at their house.

Ruthies Egg Dish

10 beaten eggs (beat with electric mixer), 1 pound grated Jack cheese, 4 teaspoons baking powder, 2 tablespoons flour, dash of salt and pepper, 1 small can of mild diced chilies~drained. Mix all ingredients well.

Melt butter to coat 9 inch by 11 inch pan. Pour mixed mixture into buttered pan and bake at 400 degrees for 10-15 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. 

This is great with salsa and/or sour cream over the top after it's dished up.


Merry Christmas from Washington state


“She brought forth he firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.     And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.  And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them and the glory of the Lord shone round about them and they were sore afraid.  And the angel said unto them, Fear not, for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.  For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.  And this shall be a sign unto you,  Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manager.  And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace, good will toward men.”  Luke 2: 7-14


May the peace and love of that night, so long ago,  bless you this holiday season…….Linda

Sunday, December 23, 2007

The True Meaning of the Season

I was so moved by Kathy's recent entry on giving.   Please pop over and read her journal entry of December 21st.  WARNING:  Grab a tissue first....

Thank you Kathy for sharing this moving entry.

All Over For Another Year...

Well the family Christmas dinner is over for another year.  There were 10 adults, 1 teenager and two of my little great nieces.  My daughter and her family all have the icky flu so none of them were able to come.  My oldest niece had to work and her husband took their two kids and spent the afternoon at his folks house and my youngest niece was in route from Denver to Seattle-Tacoma airport while we were eating so she wasn't there either.  I think everyone had a good time and they was no excuse if they left hungry.  The menu included;

Ultimate party meatballs, pasta salad, cranberry molded salad, escalloped potatoes, escalloped asparagus, french sliced green beans, baked salmon, lemon bundt cake, apple pie and berry pie.   Bob has several 4-5 pound salmon in his freezer, so I cooked one...I think about 5 pounds and everyone that wanted a taste of some.  It was all gone at the end of the meal.

It's a big job to load everything up and haul it up to the clubhouse, trying desperately not to forget anything.  I use throw away plates, but I take my own silverware, serving pieces, pans, serving dishes, etc. And I do a lot of the cooking up there, as the clubhouse has a full kitchen.  And I wash everything up there, so when I get back home, all I have to do is put it away.   But...there is no way I could have that many people in my home.  And I love to cook for a crowd ......the more the merrier I say.  

This afternoon I'm going with Bob to get gifts for his to youngest grand-angels.  He's already purchased Old Navy gift cards for the teenagers.  But we get to go to the toy department for Lance, who is 3-1/2 years old and little Marin Rose who is 6 months.  He's agreed to buy her a newborn Cabbage Patch I get to look at them again.  LOL

It's pouring rain and about 40 degrees here this morning.  I've been reading the stories about the horrible weather in the mid-west and on the east coast.  They are really getting hit hard.  Yesterday, it rained also but when I got the car loaded and got to the clubhouse it had stopped and it had stopped when we loaded the car to come back to my house.  I was thankful for that.

 I'm hoping to go to a little church up the street at 5pm today.  They are having a Christmas Eve-Eve service.  

Have a wonderful Sunday and if you haven't started your Christmas shopping yet...there's not much time left.

Until next time.....Linda

Friday, December 21, 2007

One Family Christmas Dinner Item Done !

As I've said before, Saturday is the day I'm cooking Christmas dinner for my family.  This morning I made one of the's called Lemonade Cake and I made it in my new Martha Stewart bundt pan.  It is so pretty !   The recipe came from author Debbie Macomber's Cedar Cove series....made by one of her characters Maryellen Bowman.  Debbie gave each of us a whole collection of great recipes that appear in her books when I went to the Gig Harbor Border's book signing back in October or November. 

It smells heavenly in the house~ very lemon-like.

Here's the recipe if you want to try it.  It's very easy.

Lemonade Cake

1 box lemon cake mix, 1 small box lemon instant pudding mix, 1/4 cup lemon juice.

Preheat oven to 350*.  Prepare cake mix according to package directions.  Add lemon instant pudding mix, beating for 2 minutes.  Add lemon juice & beat for 1 more minute.  Pour batter into well greased bundt pan.  Bake according to cake mix package directions.  Cool for 15 minutes and the turn out onto cake plate. 

Glaze: 1 cup powdered sugar, 1/2 cup milk, 1 tablespoon lemon juice.  Pour over warm cake.  

NOTE:  I found that this was quite a bit and only put about 1/2 of the glaze on the cake.

So now that I've shared the recipe...if you make it, please tell me how you liked   Deal!       Linda 

Thursday, December 20, 2007

It's Hard To Believe.....

.....that Friday is the official first day of winter.  Today has been beautiful here in my little corner of our big world. The sun has been shining all day, which is surprising because it absolutely poured rain all of yesterday and all night.

I worked outside for a little over an hour this afternoon.  An edict has come from the park manager's office that we are to have nothing stored on our carports but our official trash cans and of course our cars. So I was out there cleaning up a little bit.  I don't know what I'm going to do with my wood supply.  I like it out there because it's under cover and dry...wet wood does not burn very well.  I think I may move my park bench off the porch and into the storage shed for the winter and put the wood up there.  But then, I suppose they'll be after me for having wood stored on my porch.  I don't know what to do. 

Little Peyton's grandma stopped by this afternoon and reports that Peyton is doing fine at home. She's up to 4 pounds 11 ounces now so continues to gain weight. She now weighs more than my Gabi.

Well, not much longer now until my family Christmas dinner.  It's this coming Saturday.  Friday, I'm going to be busy because several of the things I'm making have to be made "the night before."   Which reminds me...I could boil the eggs today for the escalloped asparagus dish...that would be one less thing to do Friday.  I wish someone out there would make a plate of deviled eggs for me.  I love them and hate to make them.

Thanks to Sugar for my beautiful Washington state graphic.  I love it.  I'm right there, a little to the left, of the left top of the "W." Right there where Puget Sound winds it way down into the state from the Pacific Ocean.

Tonight is the last night of "The Clash of The Choirs." I'm anxious to see which choir wins.  And I think popcorn is in order tonight while I watch the conclusion of this great 4 day program.

Until next time......Linda

How Deep ?

Two rednecks are out hunting, and as they are walking along they come upon a huge hole in the ground.

 They approach it and are amazed by the size of it.
The first hunter says, "Wow, that's some hole, I can't even see the bottom.

 I wonder how deep it is?"
The second hunter says, "I don't know, let's throw something down there and listen and see how long it takes to hit bottom."
The first hunter says, "There's this old transmission over here, give me a hand and we'll throw it in and see".
So they pick it up and carry it over, and count one, and two and three, and throw it in the hole.
They are standing there listening and looking over the edge when they hear a rustling in the brush behind them.

 As they turn around they see a goat come crashing through the brush, run up to the hole, and jump in headfirst.
While they are standing there looking at each other, looking in the hole, and trying to figure out what that was all about, an old farmer walks up.
"Say there,” says the farmer.

 "You fellers didn't happen to see my goat around here anywhere, did you?"
The first hunter says, "Funny you should ask, but we were just standing here a minute a go and a goat came running out of the bushes and jumped headfirst into this hole here!"
And the old farmer said, "Why that's impossible …
I had him chained to a transmission! "

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

European Christmas Card~a great web site

(thanks to my friend Jan for sending this to me)

A European Christmas Card! Click on the link below...then click on choose a destination and click on a country. Be sure your sound is turned up.....

Night Before Christmas~Aviation Version

NOTE: I got this in email form from a friend;  

'Twas the night before Christmas, and out on the ramp,
 Not an airplane was stirring, not even a Champ.
 The aircraft were fastened to tie downs with care,
 In hopes that come morning, they all would be there.
The fuel trucks were nestled, all snug in their spots,
 With gusts from two-forty at 39 knots.
 I slumped at the fuel desk, now finally caught up,
 And settled down comfortably, resting my butt.
 When the radio lit up with noise and with chatter,
 I turned up the scanner to see what was the matter.
 A voice clearly heard over static and snow,
Called for clearance to land at the airport below.
 He barked his transmission so lively and quick,
 I'd have sworn that the call sign he used was "St. Nick";
 I ran to the panel to turn up the lights,
 The better to welcome this magical flight.
 He called his position, no room for denial,
 "St. Nicholas One, turnin' left onto final."
 And what to my wondering eyes should appear,
 But a Rutan-built sleigh, with eight Rotax Reindeer!
 With vectors to final, down the glideslope he came,
 As he passed all fixes, he called them by name:
 "Now Ringo! Now Tolga! Now Trini and Bacun!
 On Comet! On Cupid!" What pills was he takin'?
 While controllers were sittin', and scratchin' their head,
 They phoned to my office, and I heard it with dread,
 The message they left was both urgent and dour:
 "When Santa pulls in, have him please call the tower."
 He landed like silk, with the sled runners sparking,
 Then I heard "Left at Charlie," and "Taxi to parking."
 He slowed to a taxi, turned off of three-oh
 And stopped on the ramp with a "Ho, ho-ho- ho..."
 He stepped out of the sleigh, but before he could talk,
 I ran out to meet him with my best set of chocks.
 His red helmet and goggles were covered with frost
 And his beard was all blackened from Reindeer exhaust.
 His breath smelled like peppermint, gone slightly stale,
 And he puffed on a pipe, but he didn't inhale.
 His cheeks were all rosy and jiggled like jelly,
 His boots were as black as a crop duster’s belly.
 He was chubby and plump, in his suit of bright red,
 And he asked me to "fill it, with hundred low- lead."
 He came dashing in from the snow-covered pump,
 I knew he was anxious for drainin' the sump.
 I spoke not a word, but went straight to my work,
 And I filled up the sleigh, but I spilled like a jerk.
 He came out of the restroom, and sighed in relief,
Then he picked up a phone for a Flight Service brief.
 And I thought as he silently scribed in his log,
 These reindeer could land in an eighth-mile fog.
 He completed his pre-flight, from the front to the rear,
 Then he put on his headset, and I heard him yell, "Clear!"
 And laying a finger on his push-to-talk,
 He called up the tower for clearance and squawk.
 "Take taxiway Charlie, the southbound direction,
 Turn right three-two-zero at pilot's discretion."
 He sped down the runway, the best of the best,
 "Your traffic's a Grumman, inbound from the west."
 Then I heard him proclaim, as he climbed through the night,
 "Merry Christmas to all! I have traffic in sight."

Tuesday, December 18, 2007


Your Monday Photo Shoot: What's On Your Porch?  from John

This week, the Photo Shoot is going outdoors -- but not too far:

Your Monday Photo Shoot: Show us something of interest on your porch. If you don't have a porch, you can substitute front steps, back steps and patios. If you've none of those things, then just find something out the window. If you don't have a window, move.

I've already posted these pictures in a previous entry but I'm posting them again in compliance with John's Monday Photo Shoot entry ;

It Is Summer Yet?

Just got this weather warning from KOMO TV in Seattle.  Again I live in Pierce Country, so thankfully we're just getting a "wind advisory."

Severe Weather Bulletin
Your MyKOMO4Cast has this important weather alert from the KOMO 4 Weather Center. Weather alerts are issued by county and may not impact your exact location. Go to your KOMO 4Cast page and click the "Severe Weather" icon to see details of this alert.
02:57 PM PST Tue-Dec-18
The Weather Service has issued a WIND ADVISORY
Washington counties
Clallam, Grays Harbor, Island, Jefferson, King, Kitsap, Lewis, Mason, Pierce, San Juan, Skagit, Snohomish, Thurston, Whatcom
These bulletins are currently in effect for your area:
Washington counties
Grays Harbor
San Juan
Grays Harbor County includes the area along the Washington coast.  So no doubt, those poor people will be without power again, having trees falling down across houses and roadways & subject to damage by high water coming over the breakwater.

Couldn't Resist This One !

Thanks to a old grade school & high school friend for this one. He and his wife are off to a large city near where they live, for his 5th Chemo treatment this week.....and he took the time to pass on a few Maxine cartoons.  Bless his heart.

Snow in the Mountains

It's snowing in the mountains here in Washington.  Check out the following web cams for a look at the beautiful white stuff. 

Snoqualmie Pass;

Stevens Pass;

No snow here at Vantage, WA.  This bridge crosses the Columbia River;

Blewett Pass;

There are several mountain passes closed until next May because of heavy snow conditions.  The ones I've listed here are the main passes from the west side of Washington to the east, not only eastern Washington but to Idaho and beyond.

Here at sea level (actually my house sits at about 200 feet above sea level) it pouring. 

I was going to go grocery shopping today but woke up about 3 am, not feeling all that good and I really did n't go back into a sound sleep after that. So I'm sort of draging around the house.  I think I'll stay home and start some baking.  Hopefully, I'll sleep better tonight and be up and ready to "hit it" in the morning.

Last night I watched the first of four episodes of "Clash of the Choirs."  I thought it was excellent and am looking forward to the next three nights of this new show.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Visit With Santa

I wanted to share some pictures as we get closer to Christmas. First is a picture of me, visiting Santa.  Obviously at an age where I wasn't terrified.  I imagine I was about 4 (turning 5 right after the New Year).  I do remember (as I'm sure most people my age remember) the huge Santa production in the department stores back in the 1950's.  There was one store in town that even had a small train that took kids for a ride below the elevated platform where Santa sat.  And there were people dressed up like elves who took us up to Santa's knee. (Just like in the movie "A Christmas Story")************************************************

Sunday, December 16, 2007

How About A Snow Day?

Check this site, and create your own snowflake;


Need a Snow Day?

Some Holiday Spirit Inside & Out

In my entry yesterday, I posted a photo of the Christmas cards that have come in....taped on the inside of my front door, surrounding a red berry wreath.  I had a couple emails asking why no wreath outside...well there is one.  So today I've posted some more pictures.  The wreath on the outside of my front door, then on my precious old rusty milk can with a bright red holiday bow, my old watering can with silk poinsettias, my "Think Snow" holiday sign (you can tell I'm not worried about going to work this winter on snowy mornings) and finally a shot of my "always decorated" 4 foot Christmas tree.  "Always decorated" means just what it says...I leave it decorated and when the holidays are over, I unplug the lights, wrap plastic around it and put it out in my storage shed until next year. If you ever need a decorated Christmas tree in the middle of July....I'm the person to call.

Earlier today, Bob and I went down Interstate 5 about 20 miles to Lacey.  We had a "buy one, get one free" coupon for a Mexican restaurant down there.  There food was fabulous by the way and I brought one enchilada, some beans and a little rice home for lunch tomorrow.  

 After we left there we drove over to the new Cabela's Store that recently opened. Oh my gosh...I've never seen anything like it.   185,000 square feet of retail area, a restaurant that serves among other things wild game (bison burgers were today's special~sorry Lisa), animal displays, huge aquariums, a laser light shooting could stay in there all day.  I was bummed that did not have my camera, the animal displays were beautiful .  I'm hoping that maybe after the holidays we can take another drive down there during the week when there's not so many people in the store.  It was packed today. 

All the presents are wrapped so I took the gift wrap out to the storage shed for another year. I'm glad to get it out of here and be able to get some of the clutter cleared out of the living room.  Now I have to make out a grocery list for next Saturday's family meal and maybe do some baking.   Oh and I have to put together a basket for my brother & sister in law.  We have been doing that the last few years rather than giving each other regular wrapped gifts.  It's nice because in a basket, you get a little bit of this & that.  I'll put some cookies and cranberry bread in their's along with some things I picked up on my travels this last year.

I hope everyone had a great weekend....and I know you've gotten all your shopping done, everything is wrapped and under the tree or in the mail, your cards are written & mailed and this next week you can kick back and relax......until next time;   Linda

Saturday, December 15, 2007

I love them !

More cards came in today.  It's so fun to go to the mailbox and find something that's not a bill, another application for a credit card or other junk mail.   I even got one today from my dear male cousin who lives across the pond in Maidenhead, Berkshire.  He went there with the U.S. Air Force in the 1960's, got married, had kids and I thought when his wife passed away, he'd come home but he didn't. He's found a new love over there and I guess England has captured him.  But I miss him.  We're just  6 weeks apart in age and were close as kids.

I took a cue from Robin and taped my cards up on the inside of my front door.  I have a red berry wreath hanging on the inside and they look very pretty taped all around it.  Do you see yours?

I broke down and wrapped Bob's gift's today, if he's a bad boy between now & the 25th...they can always be unwrapped and put on eBay.  LOL

I need two more gift bags for his two little grand angels, so I think I'll stop at the Dollar Store Sunday afternoon and see what I can find.  Then I'll be all done. Done for another year !

Now I need to get started on some baking.   My family Christmas dinner is a week from today...the menu is planned and I have some of the stuff already but not all of it, so need to do some grocery shopping during this next week.

Marie, I wish you were here to cook it for would be so much could even bring Todd, too....

I was just on the Journal Chat for awhile but Guido & the rest of them decided they should go to bed since it was after midnight for them.    I hope everyone is having a wonderful weekend....and getting those last minute details cleared up, it's not much longer now.   

Until next time........Linda

Bogus AOL Email~BEWARE !!

It seems everyone in the world is getting this bogus AOL email.  It's not from AOL and whatever you do, DO NOT supply them with the information they are asking for.  Here in the U.S. those emails should be forwarded to;

I actually keep that email address in my Adress Book under; AOL, fraud emails.  

The email I got this morning reads;

Dear Valued Member,

We were unable to process your most recent payment. Please verify that your billing information is correct to avoid interruption of your Aol Services.

To ensure that your account is not interrupted, please update your billing information by clicking here:

If your information on file is not updated within 48 hours, we will temporarily suspend your Aol account.

Thank you,

Michael Baldger
AOL Billing Center

The subject line reads; AOL® Member ( Your Account Suspension Notice )

Our friends across the pond have been getting the same one. So the scammers are after everyone, this holiday season.

Be careful, the bad guys are out to get us.......they will have coal in their stockings again this year.      

Friday, December 14, 2007

Carolling Thru Journal Land

Let me start off by saying that I love Christmas music.  The old Christmas carols are my favorite.  I have more Christmas CD's than any other kind of music. And in grade school & high school I was fortunate to be part of the choir and I also sang in the church choir for many years, so I know lots of them.  I've been known to play Christmas music in my car all year long, even during the hottest months of summer.  Probably the oldest Christmas music that I love is Handel's "Messiah."  That one goes way back !  But in the late 1990's a new song came on the scene.  Written by Mark Lowry, who is a Christian comedian and part of the Bill and Gloria Gaither group.  This song will stir your heart and soul.  I hope it becomes one of your favorites like it has mine.  This is Mark Lowry singing the song he wrote the words to;  


Here's the lyrics to this powerful song;

Mary, did you know
That your baby boy will one day walk on water?
Mary did you know
That your baby boy will save our sons and daughters?
Did you know
That your baby boy has come to make you new?
This child that you've delivered
Will soon deliver you

Mary, did you know
That your baby boy will give sight to a blind man?
Mary did you know
That your baby boy will calm a storm with his hand?
Did you know
That your baby boy has walked where angels trod?
And when you kiss your little baby
You've kissed the face of God

Mary, did you know?
The blind will see
The deaf will hear
And the dead will live again
The lame will leap
The dumb will speak
The praises of the Lamb

Mary, did you know
That your baby boy is Lord of all creation?
Did you know
That your baby boy will one day rule the nations?
Did you know
That your baby boy is heaven's perfect Lamb?
This sleeping childyou're holding
Is the great "I Am" ?


Thursday, December 13, 2007

It Wasn't that Bad!

They must have some new numbing stuff out because after 4 shots of Novocain (or whatever it is now) the bottom right side of my mouth got really numb but by the time the dentist was done removing the old crown, filling the little cavity, preparing the site for the temporary crown & placing the temporary face was no longer numb!  I was amazed.  But tonight it feels like someone punched me in the jaw.  I go back on the 27th for the permanent crown.

So after the dentist, I went to the Post Office and only had to wait in line about 10 minutes (will wonders never cease?).  I mailed a package and got some miscellaneous stamps. Last week I was going thru a drawer in my desk and found 45 stamps that were worth either 33 or 32 cents.  Since our First Class postage is now 41 cents,  I had to get odds and ends of stamps to make up the difference.

I got a call from little Peyton's grandma just before I left for the dentist.  Peyton is up to 4 pounds and 7 ounces and it looks like she gets to come home Saturday.  Her mommy is going to check into the hospital Friday and "room-in" with Peyton over night, so the nurses can go over all the things she needs to know once Peyton gets home.  This is good news for the whole family. Peyton's mom has already had to go back to work but they are giving her next week off to try and get in a routine with the baby at home.  After that it's back to work.  My friend Judy (grandma) will be baby sitting her on Mondays & Tuesdays and her auntie on her daddy's side of the family will be watching her Wednesday, Thursday & Friday.  It's sad that these young mom's have to work and take these little ones out in the cold each morning.  Wouldn't it be nice if she could just stay home and enjoy her baby for at least a year?  Some countries give a year's paid maternity leave...that's the way it should be here too.

Until next time....Linda  


Back to the dentist ~$350

When they told me that I had a teeny tiny cavity under a 20 year old crown, I scheduled the appointment for January, because when it comes to that kind of stuff....I'm the great procrastinator.  Well, Monday I got a call from the receptionist and she told me if I wait until January my out of pocket portion will be $50 more because of the deductible for the new year.  RATS !!!!!!

So today at 2pm I'll be in the chair, the bottom right side of my mouth all numb (drool), while he removes the older than dirt crown, fixes the little cavity and places a temporary crown in the spot. 

Then on December 27th it's back to the office, to have the temporary removed & the new crown put into place. 

Meanwhile, the out of pocket cost to me is $350 for this visit.  My dental insurance will pay the remainder.   My dentist and his staff are top notch, and even though I don't want to go there today, I'm glad they called me and told me I'd be saving some money by getting it done this year.  

I know I have some old fillings that need to be replaced before my dental insurance ends in August, and there's going to be a $50 deductible next year....but at least this procedure will be easier on me, financially.

The worst part for me is the takes literally hours for it to wear off.  My only antidote is a beverage with caffeine to speed up the process of it getting out of my system (aka Dr. Pepper with a straw so it won't dribble down my numb chin).

This morning I've vacuumed, mopped the floors of both bathrooms and cleaned the kitchen tile floor with the special cleaner they provided me.  I put the "Christmas card assembling" card table away.....have one package left to take to the Post Office.  So I'm closer to being done.  I just have Bob's gift's to wrap but I'll be saving those until just before the big day, to see how he behaves this next week and a half. 

Happy Thursday.....I'm off to fix a big lunch because I'll still be numb when it's time for dinner.     Linda

Get out your tissues~this one will get you !

Thanks to a former co-worker for sending me this (in September 1960 I was working at the phone company making 90 cents an hour,so I can't imagine what it was like for this dear lady);

In September 1960, I woke up one morning with six hungry babies and just 75 cents in my pocket.

Their father was gone.

The boys ranged from three months to seven years; their sister was two.

Their Dad had never been much more than a presence they feared.

Whenever they heard his tires crunch on the gravel driveway they would scramble to hide under their beds. He did manage to leave $15 a week to buy groceries.

Now that he had decided to leave, there would be no more beatings, but no food either.

If there was a welfare system in effect in southern Indiana at that time, I certainly knew nothing about it.

I scrubbed the kids until they looked brand new and then put on my best homemade dress, loaded them into the rusty old 51 Chevy and drove off to find a job.

The seven of us went to every factory, store
and restaurant in our small town.

No luck.

The kids stayed crammed into the car and tried to be quiet while I tried to convince whoever would listen that I was willing to learn or do anything. I had to have a job.

Still no luck . The last place we went to, just a few miles out of town, was an old Root Beer Barrel drive-in that had been converted to a truck stop.

It was called the Big Wheel.

An old lady named Granny owned the place and she peeked out of the window from time to time at all those kids.

She needed someone on the graveyard shift, 11 at night until seven in the morning.

She paid 65 cents an hour, and I could start that night.

I raced home and called the teenager down the street that baby-sat for people.

I bargained with her to come and sleep on my sofa for a dollar a night.

She could arrive with her pajamas on and the kids would already be asleep.

This seemed like a good arrangement to her, so we made a deal.

That night when the little ones and I knelt to
say our prayers, we all thanked God for finding Mommy a job. And so I started at the BigWheel.
When I got home in the mornings I woke the baby-sitter up and sent her home with one dollar of my tip money-- fully half of what I averaged every night.

As the weeks went by, heating bills added a strain to my meager wage.

The tires on the old Chevy had the consistency of penny balloons and began to leak. I had to fill them with air on the way to work and again every morning before I could go home.

One bleak fall morning, I dragged myself to the car to go home and found four tires in the back seat. New tires!

There was no note, no nothing, just those beaut iful brand new tires.

Had angels taken up residence in Indiana ? I wondered.

I made a deal with the local service station.

In exchange for his mounting the new tires, I would clean up his office.

I remember it took me a lot longer to scrub his floor than it did for
him to do the tires.

I was now working six nights instead of five and it still wasn't enough.

Christmas was coming and I knew there would be no money for toys for the kids.

I found a can of red paint and started repairing and painting some old toys. Then I hid them in the basement so there would be something for Santa to deliver on Christmas morning.

Clothes were a worry too. I was sewing patches on top of patches on the boys pants and soon they would be too far gone to repai r.

On Christmas Eve the usual customers were drinking coffee in the Big Wheel. There were the truckers, Les, Frank, and Jim, and a state trooper named Joe.

A few musicians were hanging around after a gig at the Legion and were dropping nickels inthe pinball machine.

The regulars all just sat around and talked through the wee hours of the morning and then left to get home before the sun came up.

When it was time for me to go home at seven o'clock on Christmas morning, to my amazement, my old battered Chevy was filled full to the top with boxes of all shapes and sizes.

I quickly opened the driver's side door, crawled inside and kneeled in the front facing the back seat.

Reaching back, I pulled off the lid of the top box.

Inside was whole case of little blue jeans, sizes 2-10!

I looked inside another box: It was full of shirts to go with the jeans.

Then I peeked inside some of the other boxes. There was candy and nuts and bananas and bags of groceries. There was an enormous ham for baking, and cannedvegetables and potatoes.
There was pudding and Jell-O and cookies, pie filling and flour. There was a whole bag of laundry supplies and cleaning items.

And there were five toy trucks and one beautiful little doll.

As I drove back through empty streets as the sun slowly rose on the most amazing Christmas Day of my life, I was sobbing with gratitude.

And I will never forget the joy on the faces of my little ones that precious morning.

Yes, there were angels in Indiana that long-ago December. And they all hung out at the Big Wheel truck stop

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Leave it to our neighbors to the north

With the American dollar and the Canadian dollar pretty much the same now, our Canadian neighbors are coming over the boarder in droves to shop.  Everything is much cheaper for them here than it is in Canada.  Even cars & trucks, new & used.  Well, anyway the malls up in northern Washington state are reporting that their trash cans are full and overflowing with old worn out Canadian shopper's clothes and shoes. 

Yup, they wear their oldest outfits over and then purchase new stuff and wear it home.  Some have been seen wearing several layers of brand new clothes back across the border.   It seems it has something to do with Customs fees on the newly purchased items in shopping bags.   But, if they're wearing it, I guess they figure it's no longer new.  Hmmmm !

Christmas Favorites

 Welcome to the Christmas edition of getting to know your friends. Okay.............Here’s what you're supposed to do, and try not to be a SCROOGE!!!   Just copy this into your journal and leave the link in my "Comments" section so I can see your answers.   Linda

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? Both

2. Real tree or Artificial?   Artificial, left decorated all year, put away in my storage shed, wrapped in plastic, ready to bring in the house and plug in each year.

3. When do you put up the tree? right after Thanksgiving

4. When do you take the tree down?  Not until after my birthday.
5. Do you like eggnog?  the "light" eggnog diluted with 1% milk or a little in cocoa is ok.
7. Do you have a nativity scene?   Yes, several of them

8. Hardest person to buy for?  my grandson

9. Easiest to buy for?  my grand daughter and little great nephew & nieces

10 Mail or email Christmas cards?   Mail & email

11. Worst Christmas gift you ever received?  Can think of none

12. Favorite Christmas Movie?  Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer (did you know that Bumbles bounce?)

13. When do you start shopping for Christmas?   January, for the following Christmas
14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present?  It's called "re-gifting" & is perfectly acceptable so yes.  Just remember to put a note on it, indicating who you got it from, so you don't give it back to that person.

15. Favorite things to eat at Christmas?   I love it all
16. Clear lights or colored on the tree?  colored on my tree & clear on the outside of the house
17. Favorite Christmas song?  "Mary Did You Know?"

18. Travel at Christmas or stay home?  if I travel, it's just here locally

19. Can you name all of Santa's reindeers?   Yes

20. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning?  usually Christmas morning but that changes too, depending on the circumstances

21. Most annoying thing about this time of year?  Nothing...because I stay away from the Mall

22. Favorite ornament theme or color?  a good old fashioned looking Christmas tree

 23. Favorite for Christmas dinner?   Turkey~but this year I'm doing something different

24. What do you want for Christmas this year?   Hopefully my daughter & family will be able to join us this year. 

25. Who is most likely to respond to this? I hope everyone who reads my journal will participate in their own journal & then leave a link in my "comments" section so I can see your answers.

26. Who is least likely to respond to this?   Whoever doesn't read this journal