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!

Thursday, December 31, 2015

This last day of 2015 I find myself feeling very unsettled.  I am looking forward to the new year, but at the same time I am leaving a ministry that I have had for 38 years.  Others are calling it retirement, but that's not what it is.  I retired last summer.  I stayed on as weekend organist, but now I am leaving a situation where I no longer feel I belong.  There are times I cry, but then I think, "Do I really want to go back there?  Is the pain of staying worse than the pain of leaving?"  Sadly, I have to answer yes.  This is not how I would have liked to leave, but sometimes we just don't get to choose.  I can't believe that God has given me a gift only to leave me no place to use it.  So I am waiting and trusting in God that he has a new and better plan for me.  One where I don't have to leave church thinking, "does what I do make a difference?"  So, I need to get through tomorrow - say goodbye to some people who have loved, supported, and encouraged me, to forgive the ones who made things difficult, to forgive myself for not living up to all that I could be -  and play my last mass at the parish that has been my home most of my adult life.  Then I will move on and try to figure out who I am without the ministry.

It is now evening and as always, doing something creative gets me out of my funk.  I did some work on the snowman quilt aided by Meghan and Maddie who had tons of questions about why I did things the way I do on my quilting machine.  I can't wait until their next break.  By then the room will be more organized and I can have them come down along with Claire and we can do some quilting together.

I have been trying to perfect my foaming liquid soap.  I am still having separation issues so I am going to have to do some experimenting with the emulsifier.  I am getting proficient at doing labels.  We have always made our own - or rather, Anna did.  The company I buy my blanks from offers access to their template service with the purchase of labels.  Makes it quite a bit easier.  

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Happy 6th day of Christmas!  

Since my last post, we were slammed with stocking orders.  This year we sold over 350.  I was more organized this year, but still could do better.  I have my plan in place for next year.   

On Christmas Eve at 1:30 in the morning, we lost power.  
Thank goodness, I made myself get things done the night before.  However, we had to have a plan B for our family gathering on Christmas night.  Melisa offered her house which, handily, is on the next farm over.  We hauled everything over there and had a great time.  We even got our family pic taken.

On Sunday, we celebrated the Twins' baptisms followed by brunch afterward at the Shepherd bar.  It was a great day!

Even though our family celebrates Christmas until January 6, it is back to work here at the Sugar Bush.  Last night I made a batch of soap - my first in well over a month.  It is blueberry and it smells wonderful.  It did not set up quickly so I am making myself wait until tonight to cut it.  We'll see how that works out.

Another love that went by the wayside during "stocking season" was quilting, so yesterday I spent most of the day working on a quilt made out of some fat quarters that I bought from Anna.  As the quilt came together, I decided that it needed a snowman.   I'm not completely happy with the snowman, but, oh well, I like him and this one will be for us.  

My first attempt at quilting this was a disaster so I took it apart and redid the layers with different batting.  I got some of it quilted last night - and I'm afraid I stayed up a bit too late.

Tonight, Claire, Maddie, and Meghan are coming over.  The plan is to go to the service at St. Patrick's if everyone arrives on time.  St. Patrick's was deemed an "occasional church" by the powers that be in Saginaw.  But the good news is that they meet every Wednesday night for a Word and Communion service followed by a potluck.  Even though I spent 38 years at St. Mary, I feel much more at home at this little church.  The sad thing is, there are more people on a Wednesday night at St. Patrick than there are on a Saturday night at St. Mary.  One has to wonder at the "wisdom" coming from Saginaw. 

 I often think it is ironic how much I love country life.  I grew up in the city, but can't imagine living anywhere but here.

Fast forward to now - several hours later.  I caved.  I admit it.  I caved and cut the soap.  I am so bad.  LOL!  I do love how it turned out.