Christmas 2016

Christmas 2016
God Bless Our Troops

Click on the cabin below to see our family website.

Click on the cabin below to see our family website.
We love what we do!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Today would have been my mother's 76th birthday. She was 32 when she died - and it still seems like yesterday. Happy Birthday, Mama!

I made a batch of peppermint soap on Monday so that should be cured by the time of our first Christmas shows in November. I've also been grunging jars and making Harvest Home Candles. I think I need to wick down on the Harvest Home because they are smoking a bit. Guess I'll be keeping those for me. Darn! LOL!

And little Miss Maddie has some new moves!


Word of the day:
Saint Michael, Saint Gabriel, and Saint Raphael, archangels - Feast
Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint John 1:47-51.

Gospel Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward him and said of him, "Here is a true child of Israel. There is no duplicity in him." Nathanael said to him, "How do you know me?" Jesus answered and said to him, "Before Philip called you, I saw you under the fig tree." Nathanael answered him, "Rabbi, you are the Son of God; you are the King of Israel." Jesus answered and said to him, "Do you believe because I told you that I saw you under the fig tree? You will see greater things than this." And he said to him, "Amen, amen, I say to you, you will see the sky opened and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man."

Friday, September 24, 2010 - First Giveaway!

Today we toured the Spangler Candy Company.  It was very encouraging to hear that this company is under expansion in the economy.  They have a very, very low employee turnover rate.  They employ 400 people.  They are the second largest employer in Bryan, Ohio. They did set up a factory in Mexico in order to stay competitive in the world market.  Not one single person from this company lost a job.

Here's a factoid.  The next time you buy a bag of those orange circus peanuts, take a look at the top.  Every 9th peanut has "Spangler" stamped into it.  Also, do you know what flavoring is used in Circus Peanuts?  I think we will make this a giveaway.  I will send a bar of our handmade soap to the first person who can tell me the flavor of the orange Circus Peanuts.  Just post the answer in the comments section of this blog.  No emails - just the comments section.

Word of the day:
Friday of the Twenty-fifth week in Ordinary Time
Today the Church celebrates : Our Lady of Mercy
Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Luke 9:18-22.

Once when Jesus was praying in solitude, and the disciples were with him, he asked them, "Who do the crowds say that I am?" They said in reply, "John the Baptist; others, Elijah; still others, 'One of the ancient prophets has arisen.'" Then he said to them, "But who do you say that I am?" Peter said in reply, "The Messiah of God." He rebuked them and directed them not to tell this to anyone. He said, "The Son of Man must suffer greatly and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed and on the third day be raised."

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Well, here we are in Archbold at Sauder Village. We got on the road about 9:30 this morning. I left after getting the kids on the bus. Clayton pulled a fast one on me and his mommy is not happy. As the bus approached, Clay said he was going to hide behind a nearby tree. When the bus pulled up, he took off running. I must have been quite a sight chasing him around the yard because as the bus pulled away, I heard, "that looked like fun." Sam had seen the whole thing from across the road. I am glad no one had a video camera handy.

We got down here about 11:30 and ate lunch at the Barn.

This is a picture of the inn where we are staying:
After lunch we toured the historic Sauder Village.  We saw so much interesting history. Here the women are filling jars with apple butter.  They don't put spices in their apple butter the way we do, but the operation looked identical.

We visited the church and spent a lot of time talking with the organist. The organ he is playing is a pump organ and if you watch his legs, you can see him pumping the peddles to power the organ.

He played a wonderful arrangement of Amazing Grace and I stupidly deleted the longer video. He offered to give me a copy and while he was upstairs copying it, I snuck in behind the keyboard.

All-in-all, it's been a great day!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Baby shower today. Kelli, Melisa, and I are heading south a ways for a baby shower for a friend. So many people we know are having babies. I wish I had thought to buy a crib sheet from Nicola this weekend. Grrrrrrr. Oh well, when the baby is born I'll have another chance.


Word of the day:
Twenty-fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Today: Cardinal Newman's beatification
Today the Church celebrates : St. Januarius, Bishop and Martyr († 305)
Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Luke 16:1-13.

Then he also said to his disciples, "A rich man had a steward who was reported to him for squandering his property. He summoned him and said, 'What is this I hear about you? Prepare a full account of your stewardship, because you can no longer be my steward.' The steward said to himself, 'What shall I do, now that my master is taking the position of steward away from me? I am not strong enough to dig and I am ashamed to beg. I know what I shall do so that, when I am removed from the stewardship, they may welcome me into their homes.' He called in his master's debtors one by one. To the first he said, 'How much do you owe my master?' He replied, 'One hundred measures of olive oil.' He said to him, 'Here is your promissory note. Sit down and quickly write one for fifty.' Then to another he said, 'And you, how much do you owe?' He replied, 'One hundred kors of wheat.' He said to him, 'Here is your promissory note; write one for eighty.' And the master commended that dishonest steward for acting prudently. "For the children of this world are more prudent in dealing with their own generation than are the children of light. I tell you, make friends for yourselves with dishonest wealth, so that when it fails, you will be welcomed into eternal dwellings. The person who is trustworthy in very small matters is also trustworthy in great ones; and the person who is dishonest in very small matters is also dishonest in great ones. If, therefore, you are not trustworthy with dishonest wealth, who will trust you with true wealth? If you are not trustworthy with what belongs to another, who will give you what is yours? No servant can serve two masters. He will either hate one and love the other, or be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon."

Saturday, September 18, 2010

I have been sadly remiss is updating this blog.  I've updated my other blogs, but this one kind of got thrown by the wayside.  Clayton and Claire started school.  Claire seems to love it.

Clay, depending on who he's talking to, not so much.

There was a bit of a meltdown on Wednesday when Mommy had to leave before Clay's bus came.  Melisa wisely told him the next day that he could have 3 hugs and 3 kisses and then she had to leave for work.  He was like a different boy.   He still doesn't like school (depending on who he's talking to), but he gets on the bus like a big boy.

We are settling into kind of a routine.  We all wait on the porch - which is now decorated with orange lights for Fall - while we wait for Clay's bus.  Sometimes we play "I spy" and sometimes we just talk.  Eventually Grandpa comes out on the porch and we wait for Claire's bus.  On Monday and Tuesday, Madison arrives just after Claire's bus leaves.  I get plenty of Grandkid time in, but still have enough time to do the things I want to do.  Right now, that involves getting ready for our fall craft shows.

I've been grunging jars for our Harvest Home Candles.  I love making these.  I came up with the scent blend myself and it tickles me when other people love it as much as I do.

I have one or two more batches of soap to make and then I need to finalize our inventory.  We are slowly getting orders in, but we are still almost a thousand in the hole going into our first show.  Colleen took some things to work - the ladies where she works love our candles.  I think it's funny because that place sells candles, but they like ours better. I've never seen any of the more primitive scents in any of the stores and it puzzles me, but I ain't complainin'.

Monday, Claire was here.  Claire doesn't have school on Mondays so she and Madison had a little dance party.

Our ad finally came out in Country Sampler Magazine.  It isn't on the newsstands yet.  Can't wait!!  You can see the listing HERE.

Christmas season is officially beginning here at the Sugar Bush.

Last night Nina and Jamie came up.  That's always an occasion for hangin' out and ordering pizza. Sure will be nice when the pizza oven is done and we can make one in that! The guys were in the field, but they joined us later for a game of "Imaginiff."  Fun family time.  Good stuff!

I baked 6 dozen peanut butter/chocolate chip cookies today.  If I'm lucky, they'll last me a week.

I'm going to investigate batch cooking.  Seems silly since there is just the two of us, but actually, it is never just the two of us.  It will be nice to have things made ahead so that I have something if company comes, or if I need to take a dish of something to someone.

Word of the day:
Saturday of the Twenty-fourth week in Ordinary Time
Today the Church celebrates : Saint Thomas of Villanova, Bishop (1488-1555)
Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Luke 8:4-15.

When a large crowd gathered, with people from one town after another journeying to him, he spoke in a parable. A sower went out to sow his seed. And as he sowed, some seed fell on the path and was trampled, and the birds of the sky ate it up. Some seed fell on rocky ground, and when it grew, it withered for lack of moisture. Some seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew with it and choked it. And some seed fell on good soil, and when it grew, it produced fruit a hundredfold." After saying this, he called out, "Whoever has ears to hear ought to hear." Then his disciples asked him what the meaning of this parable might be. He answered, "Knowledge of the mysteries of the kingdom of God has been granted to you; but to the rest, they are made known through parables so that 'they may look but not see, and hear but not understand.' This is the meaning of the parable. The seed is the word of God. Those on the path are the ones who have heard, but the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts that they may not believe and be saved. Those on rocky ground are the ones who, when they hear, receive the word with joy, but they have no root; they believe only for a time and fall away in time of trial. As for the seed that fell among thorns, they are the ones who have heard, but as they go along, they are choked by the anxieties and riches and pleasures of life, and they fail to produce mature fruit. But as for the seed that fell on rich soil, they are the ones who, when they have heard the word, embrace it with a generous and good heart, and bear fruit through perseverance.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

I have no words today.

Word of the day:
Saturday of the Twenty-third week in Ordinary Time
Today the Church celebrates : St. Paphnutius, Bishop (4th century), SS. Protus & Hyacinth, Martyrs († c. 260)
Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Luke 6:43-49.

A good tree does not bear rotten fruit, nor does a rotten tree bear good fruit. For every tree is known by its own fruit. For people do not pick figs from thornbushes, nor do they gather grapes from brambles. A good person out of the store of goodness in his heart produces good, but an evil person out of a store of evil produces evil; for from the fullness of the heart the mouth speaks. Why do you call me, 'Lord, Lord,' but not do what I command? I will show you what someone is like who comes to me, listens to my words, and acts on them. That one is like a person building a house, who dug deeply and laid the foundation on rock; when the flood came, the river burst against that house but could not shake it because it had been well built. But the one who listens and does not act is like a person who built a house on the ground without a foundation. When the river burst against it, it collapsed at once and was completely destroyed."


Friday, September 10, 2010

Well, our neighbors to the south are spreading manure today so everything for miles around stinks. They use rotten yogurt so things are even smellier than they would otherwise be. It wasn't so bad when it was contained to their original mile, but they have bought up all the ground from the east side of their ground to the county line to the north. Basically, where our family, kids, brother-in-law etc. live. Something about it is not quite right, but we really have no choice but to shut our windows and doors, and plug our noses when we drive by.

Today, I had Mass and Melisa wanted to go to Claire's classroom, so Clayton stayed with Aunt Kelli and Uncle Sam. Looks like he and Madison had quite a time. Kelli told them to say "pickles" and this is what she got. LOL!

Yesterday, Clay and I decorated for Fall. We had fun doing it together. Clay has definite ideas about how one should decorate.  I moved some things after he left.  He was here today and put things back. 
After Clay went home, I did some decluttering sessions.  The older I get (and the more I watch Hoarders), the easier it gets to let go of stuff.

Word of the day:
Friday of the Twenty-third week in Ordinary Time
Today the Church celebrates : St. Nicholas of Tolentino († 1310)
Saint Augustine : The splinter and the beam
Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Luke 6:39-42.

And he told them a parable, "Can a blind person guide a blind person? Will not both fall into a pit? No disciple is superior to the teacher; but when fully trained, every disciple will be like his teacher. Why do you notice the splinter in your brother's eye, but do not perceive the wooden beam in your own? How can you say to your brother, 'Brother, let me remove that splinter in your eye,' when you do not even notice the wooden beam in your own eye? You hypocrite! Remove the wooden beam from your eye first; then you will see clearly to remove the splinter in your brother's eye.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Not much getting done today, but that's okay. Plenty of time next week. Claire had fun on her second day of school. I asked her what she does at school. She said she plays and eats. Doesn't sound like the school I went to.
Tonight is cantor practice and it's time to drain the baptismal font for it's Fall cleaning. We drain it in the Fall and before Easter. Now that our new pastor is getting a handle on solving our bat problem, it should stay looking nicer longer.


Word of the day:
The Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary - Feast
Today the Church celebrates : The Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary - Feast
Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Matthew 1:1-16.18-23.

The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham. Abraham became the father of Isaac, Isaac the father of Jacob, Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers. Judah became the father of Perez and Zerah, whose mother was Tamar. Perez became the father of Hezron, Hezron the father of Ram, Ram the father of Amminadab. Amminadab became the father of Nahshon, Nahshon the father of Salmon, Salmon the father of Boaz, whose mother was Rahab. Boaz became the father of Obed, whose mother was Ruth. Obed became the father of Jesse, Jesse the father of David the king. David became the father of Solomon, whose mother had been the wife of Uriah. Solomon became the father of Rehoboam, Rehoboam the father of Abijah, Abijah the father of Asaph. Asaph became the father of Jehoshaphat, Jehoshaphat the father of Joram, Joram the father of Uzziah. Uzziah became the father of Jotham, Jotham the father of Ahaz, Ahaz the father of Hezekiah. Hezekiah became the father of Manasseh, Manasseh the father of Amos, Amos the father of Josiah. Josiah became the father of Jechoniah and his brothers at the time of the Babylonian exile. After the Babylonian exile, Jechoniah became the father of Shealtiel, Shealtiel the father of Zerubbabel, Zerubbabel the father of Abiud. Abiud became the father of Eliakim, Eliakim the father of Azor, Azor the father of Zadok. Zadok became the father of Achim, Achim the father of Eliud, Eliud the father of Eleazar. Eleazar became the father of Matthan, Matthan the father of Jacob, Jacob the father of Joseph, the husband of Mary. Of her was born Jesus who is called the Messiah. Now this is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about. When his mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph, but before they lived together, she was found with child through the holy Spirit. Joseph her husband, since he was a righteous man, yet unwilling to expose her to shame, decided to divorce her quietly. Such was his intention when, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, "Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary your wife into your home. For it is through the holy Spirit that this child has been conceived in her. She will bear a son and you are to name him Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins." All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: Behold, the virgin shall be with child and bear a son, and they shall name him Emmanuel, which means "God is with us."


Tuesday. September 7, 2010

Today was little Clairy-Bear's first day of pre-school. It's so hard to wrap my brain around it.
Seems like just yesterday she looked like this.

Then I blinked my eyes and she looks like this!

 I love the pink cowgirl boots.  They are so . . . Claire.  I called her after she got home from school.  She said she had a great day and made a new friend named Maddie.  They grow up so fast.  We are blessed that they live so close so we don't miss much.  :)

I did some decluttering today.  I wasn't real motivated so I did 15 minutes of cleaning, 15 minutes of watching Hoarders.  I did that sequence for a couple of hours and managed to get the laundry room and kitchen cleaned.  I even cleaned a couple of shelves in the fridge.  (It's kitchen zone this week.)  The more I watch Hoarders, the easier it is to let go of junk

Today was the first day of school for the kids at St. Mary's so I went in to play for Mass.  Then I went to pick up Madison.  As I was getting her out of her carseat, I said "hi!"  She looked at me, smiled, and said "hi"

Even though I savor every moment, time still moves too fast.

Word of the day:
Tuesday of the Twenty-third week in Ordinary Time
Today the Church celebrates : St. Cloud, Priest (522-c.560)
Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Luke 6:12-19.

In those days he departed to the mountain to pray, and he spent the night in prayer to God. When day came, he called his disciples to himself, and from them he chose Twelve, whom he also named apostles: Simon, whom he named Peter, and his brother Andrew, James, John, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas, James the son of Alphaeus, Simon who was called a Zealot, and Judas the son of James, and Judas Iscariot, who became a traitor. And he came down with them and stood on a stretch of level ground. A great crowd of his disciples and a large number of the people from all Judea and Jerusalem and the coastal region of Tyre and Sidon came to hear him and to be healed of their diseases; and even those who were tormented by unclean spirits were cured. Everyone in the crowd sought to touch him because power came forth from him and healed them all.

Monday, September 6, 2010

If feels like Fall. I love Fall. It's time to break out the apple scents and the apple decor. It's time to fill the house with the wonderful smells of baked goods. Did I mention that I love fall???

Today it is raining so Harold and Howard decided it was time to put in the sink down in the dungeon! I am so excited. It's in, but the water is turned off at the moment because they have to replace a leaking pipe. It will be so nice to be able to make my soap down there instead of running up and down the stairs for the lye, the oils, the fragrance, the coloring etc. I can keep all of my equipment in one place. I can't wait!!

Today is laundry day, bill day, quilting day (haven't quilted in a long time).  I want start some mini Fall quilts to take along to our quilting retreat in a few weeks.

I baked a large batch of peanut butter chocolate chip cookies, got a workout in, got the laundry started and now on to the rest of the house so I can spend the evening quilting

Word of the day:
Monday of the Twenty-third week in Ordinary Time
Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Luke 6:6-11.

On another sabbath he went into the synagogue and taught, and there was a man there whose right hand was withered. The scribes and the Pharisees watched him closely to see if he would cure on the sabbath so that they might discover a reason to accuse him. But he realized their intentions and said to the man with the withered hand, "Come up and stand before us." And he rose and stood there. Then Jesus said to them, "I ask you, is it lawful to do good on the sabbath rather than to do evil, to save life rather than to destroy it?" Looking around at them all, he then said to him, "Stretch out your hand." He did so and his hand was restored. But they became enraged and discussed together what they might do to Jesus.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Fall is in the air.  I have been in such a funk this last week.  Not a total funk, just not real tolerant of the heat and humidity.  My workouts have fallen by the wayside.  I need to get back on the stick.  Once the school year starts, I will be able to set up some kind of schedule.

Today felt like fall.  In a week or so the trees will be all different colors.  The guys will start the harvest.  We will start our craft shows, and the whole wonderful path to Christmas begins.  Christmas, for me, starts around October.  I like it that way.  I know people get all bent about commercialism, but I love it.  Just because stuff is out there doesn't mean you have to buy it.  It doesn't hurt to think "Christmas" early.  It's the season of giving.  That's what Christmas is about, isn't it?

Speaking of craft shows, Nina and Jamie came up today and Nina showed us her tutus and hair bands.  We got Madison to pose for us.

Madison stayed here for a while last night.  She and Grandpa had quite a conversation.

I need to get on the stick and start checking our fall primitive inventory.  I think we are pretty well set for CP soap, except for the peppermint.  That soap sweats something fierce in hot humid weather.  Now that it's cooling off, I need to get some made.

After much debate, we are discontinuing our Maple Cream and Maple Walnut fudge.  It never quite sets up completely and it's a total pain to put out to sample.  We are adding Chocolate Walnut.  I have to make a batch of plain chocolate yet and then we will have enough for our first 2 craft shows.  I finally have the whole process down to a science.

Word of the day:
Saturday of the Twenty-second week in Ordinary Time
Today the Church celebrates : St. Rosalia, Virgin († 1160)
Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Luke 6:1-5.

While he was going through a field of grain on a sabbath, his disciples were picking the heads of grain, rubbing them in their hands, and eating them. Some Pharisees said, "Why are you doing what is unlawful on the sabbath?" Jesus said to them in reply, "Have you not read what David did when he and those (who were) with him were hungry? (How) he went into the house of God, took the bread of offering, which only the priests could lawfully eat, ate of it, and shared it with his companions." Then he said to them, "The Son of Man is lord of the sabbath."

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Yesterday I had a visitor to my blog who calls himself the Crap Blog Detective.  Apparently, this guy has so little in his life that he feels the need to go to blogs and insult the bloggers.  I won't post his link here because that's what he wants. It's the only way he can get anyone to read his pretentious drivel.  I did connect with another blogger who had also been visited by this jerk.  So all in all, it was a gain for me.  Let us all bow our heads and say a prayer for the Crap Blogger who is so bereft of human contact that he has to seek it in the form of spreading misery.

I started the fudge this week and so far have the chocolate peanut butter and the plain peanut butter ready to go.  Today I work on chocolate. 

Next week is back to school week.  Claire will be starting pre-school so she won't be here.  I'm kind of sad about that, but her mommy said she can come any afternoon I want.  So, I'm thinking that once the new baby comes, maybe I can have a helper on Tuesday afternoons.

Word of the day:
Thursday of the Twenty-second week in Ordinary Time
Today the Church celebrates : Bl. Ingrid of Sweden († 1282)
Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Luke 5:1-11.

While the crowd was pressing in on Jesus and listening to the word of God, he was standing by the Lake of Gennesaret. He saw two boats there alongside the lake; the fishermen had disembarked and were washing their nets. Getting into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, he asked him to put out a short distance from the shore. Then he sat down and taught the crowds from the boat. After he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, "Put out into deep water and lower your nets for a catch." Simon said in reply, "Master, we have worked hard all night and have caught nothing, but at your command I will lower the nets." When they had done this, they caught a great number of fish and their nets were tearing. They signaled to their partners in the other boat to come to help them. They came and filled both boats so that they were in danger of sinking. When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at the knees of Jesus and said, "Depart from me, Lord, for I am a sinful man." For astonishment at the catch of fish they had made seized him and all those with him, and likewise James and John, the sons of Zebedee, who were partners of Simon. Jesus said to Simon, "Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching men." When they brought their boats to the shore, they left everything and followed him.