Thursday, February 26, 2009

trouble with "following"

I am unable to follow any new blogs! Something is up since I had the blog redesigned. I don't have time to fix it, but I will check into it when we get back from up north! Promise! 

14 hours!

My husband and I have to drive north to the city of Napa (not Napa Valley, but close) for a funeral tomorrow. I have 7 hours up and 7 hours back of driving in my cute little red car. I'm taking books!!! And I'll take my camera because I'm trying to bribe my dh to take me through Napa Valley on Saturday before we head home. I'd like to stop by a couple of wonderful wineries we like, to pick up some good stuff. We haven't been up there in 20 years!
Maybe even hit an antique store or two . . .
Everyone have a great weekend!!!


Wednesday, February 25, 2009

The Letter "M"

Connie over at Connie's turning 50 posted a game. I wanted to play so she assigned me a letter. With the letter given to me I must list 10 things I love that begin with that letter.

She gave me the letter "M".

Now I've really been thinking about this. For a few days in fact. There are so many obvious ones - but I really wanted to find things I truly, truly love.

So here goes. My list of "M"s.

1) Marriage

My marriage to Mark! We've been together 28 years and counting, and we've had our ups and downs like everyone else, but I've got to say, I love that Man and look forward to spending the rest of my life with him. I can only pray my children find such companionship and comfort in their own marriages.

2) Motherhood
In both forms.

1) I love my Mom and miss her terribly. I'd give anything, anything at all, everything I have to bring her back.

2) I love my kids passionately. They are the highlight of my life. They make me smile, cry, laugh, worry and just feel proud.

3) Mary - Jesus' Mother in
My "True Identity" Women's Bible

I love this Bible. I love the TNIV version, I love the feature contents of "Ask Me Anything". I love the conversations throughout. It's getting a little worn, but I love that too!

4) Menopause - ummmmmm NOT!!!!!  ;)


If you have learned anything at all about me through this blog, it's that I desire to live in the mountains and experience all four seasons there. I want a meadow for my backyard where my grandchildren (when I have some that is) can roam and explore, and pick me bushels of wildflower bouquets and just be kids.


(last summer on vacation in Colorado. I'm pointing to the clouds overhead - in my GLORY! and then the Heavens opened up!)

There is nothing except snowfall that I enjoy more than a really POWERFUL monsoon/storm. One you can feel and smell. With thunder and lightning and wind and hail. OH! I just love them!
(Again this was on our vacation in Colorado last summer. This was our campsite, and it was one of the most beautiful spots ever! I did not make it back to the coach after snapping this shot before it started just DUMPING!)

6) Money

Sorry. But I had to say it. I don't know anyone who wouldn't want more of it. Me? The more the better, so I can give it away to people and things I believe in. There are so many foundations and institutions out there that I really think benefit all of our lives. And they need money. Money to find the cure for ovarian cancer. Money to find the cure for Altzheimers. Money to build shelters for the homeless. Money to feed them. Money to provide good homes for abandoned animals. Money to help our cousin's wife who was struck by a car and now requires 24 hour care and will never be the same again. Money to teach the Word of God. Money to just help people who have touched my life that could really use just a little boost.

7) Memory Books

Yup, I've got the scrapbook bug. I could work on them for hours and hours. I love the entire process, from selecting the pictures, remembering the memories and putting it to page in an art form that only I can create. I want my grandchildren to say "Gramma, tell me about this one!"
(above are 6 pages from the scrapbook I made for our best friends for Christmas last year. It is all about their Montana Home.) speaking of Montana . . .


Oh my GOLLY it was cold!!! I have so many layers on...

If I can't have Colorado, then it must be Montana. I have truly fallen in love with this state. My husband and I have the very good fortune of our very close friends Mike and Jeanne owning a second home there on about 1000 acres, and we can go up any time we want. The door is always open, whether they are there or not. And trust me, we do! It is such a beautiful, beautiful place! (And it SNOWS there too!!!!!! hehehe). This is her and I recently - LOOK! It's snowing. And yes, she carts that big old purse everywhere!

9) Myself

This was hard to write down, but I've learned over the past few years that it is important. I am a good person, a good wife and a good Mom. I am a good friend! I'm a terrific Auntie! And someday, I'll be the BEST Gramma!

This picture represents my wonderful life. I mean, what a campspot we have in our coach! Got my glass of wine, got my two favorite pups, my darling husband is taking the shot, and it's a beautiful day at the beach! God is good!

Which brings me to No. 10. our Motorhome, a fine Merlot and a smooth Meritage!!! Gotta go RVing and drink a good wine!!!

So that is my TEN M's!  (well 11 if you count the wine!)

This was a wonderful thing to do. It is a wonderful way to truly count your Blessings.

Anyone who wants to play - just comment and I'll assign you a letter!

Thanks for visiting! Everyone have a great day! Hugs. Karen

Monday, February 23, 2009


One of the blogs I love to visit is Manuella over at The Pleasures of Homemaking. And this morning - she was INSPIRING to me!

I have an Inspiration Board. I love it. I have notes that my Mom wrote me pinned up on it, along with her watch, special brooches, special notes from my niece and good friends. Little hearts with my husband's and kid's names on them. Special fabrics and ribbons . . .  just the normal stuff to get the juices flowing.

But I didn't have a "vision" board. I have pictures of things, lists of things I'd like to accomplish stuck away in a drawer or in a journal. After reading Manuella's post this morning, I decided now was as good of a time as any for this to be my next project. So I made one! Out of materials I had on hand. No purchases necessary. I knew it didn't need to be really thick and strong as I will probably only put pictures and article clippings on it. Now I know I probably didn't do it the right way - but really fast, this is what I did.

Took just an average piece of foam board. I stocked up on these when they went on sale 5 for $5 at Michael's. Good thing!

Added some batting. Just stapled it on.

Hmmmmm ... now for some fabric - scrounging through one of the fabric drawers I find...

the perfect piece left over from the table skirts!

Staple it on, folding the corners. I knew my board was 20" x 30" so figuring out where to place the ribbon was easy. 

Added some pretty rhinestone buttons for some bling and . . .

VOILA! My new vision board.

Ok, now . .. vision . . . hmmm ... need some some vision here . . . so head over to my trusty Cricut machine.
If you've never seen one of these babies, it's a doozy. Picked out my font . . .

picked out my paper and cut it to size . . .

loaded it in the machine . . .

look at that blade cut. It's just so easy! 
(thank you Honey for giving me this for Christmas! I love it!)

Peel off the letters . . .
Ok, pick out a piece of background paper to mount it on  . . . 

VOILA! One of my favorite words. "Believe"  

Here we go! All done. 

Thank you Manuella for reminding me of the importance of being an optimist - of being positive, not negative - of seeing the glass 1/2 full, not 1/2 empty - of living the life Christ gave us and making it a wonderful journey filled with Him, and wonderful people we love and experiences we will remember always. And thanking Him each and every day for just one more day. 

Have a good day everyone! Now I really need to get to the market!

Hugs! Karen

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Let's Be Friends Award

I had an e-mail the other morning from Catherine at Catherine de the Cups. She told to me to peek at her new post and see what was waiting for me. And much to my surprise, this is what was there.

How very fun! Thank you so much Catherine! I never dreamed I would be developing friendships when I finally decided to take the plunge into blogging. I just had hoped to be a little inspirational to someone else, as so many others have been for me.


These blogs are exceedingly charming. These kind bloggers aim to find and be friends. They are not interested in self-aggrandizement. Our hope is that when the ribbons of these prizes are cut, even more friendships are propagated. Please give more attention to these writers. Deliver this award to eight bloggers who must choose eight more and include this cleverly-written text into the body of their award."
This was easy. I am going to award this to the people who have become my first "friends".  Thank you so much for all of your inspiration and time spent toward making each day a little more special; full of prayers and scripture, wishes and dreams, values and opinions, pictures and thoughts, love and friendship. Thank you to each one of you.

Catherine - Catherine de the Cups -it goes without saying that this must to go back to you with love from me.
Connie - Connie's turning 50 - Who introduced me to the wonderfully fun world of blogging. We go back so many years, and I just love you, you know that.
Christine - Wash, Fold, Put Away, Repeat - I feel in so many ways we are kindred spirits. I love your recipes and photos, memories and inspiration. I love reading your comments and look forward to visiting with you every day.
April - Delta Kids -  You are so funny and I so look forward to following you each  and every day! Although we are in different "times" in our lives, I can so relate to you. Thank you!
Shanda - Front Porces, Sweet Tea and Old Aprons - I just love your blog! You make me laugh and give me inspiration! I can't wait to see what is next!
Cynthia - Applestone Cottage - You always have such words of wisdom and encouragement and I just love hearing from you. I really, really enjoy your blog. You are a big source of inspiration for me.
Shelley - Building a Log Cabin - I just love following you as you experience something I hope to also experience one day. I love your pictures, your fun attitude, your pj's and your energy. Thank you!  
Dawnie - Dawnies Life If By The Sea - You always have wonderfully kind, thoughtful and happy comments for me! I feel like I could ring the doorbell and the door would open wide and you'd say "Karen! Come on in and let's have a cup of coffee and tell me about your day . . ."

Thank you ladies. I'm honored to call each one of you my "friend".

So grab this award, post it to your blog and PAY IT FORWARD to eight more deserving bloggers! 

Hugs. Karen

Saturday, February 21, 2009

He's baaaaaaaack

Hi Mom! I'm home!

We knew he would be - just weren't exactly sure when. This is our son Justin. He's 20. He was living with 3 roommates in a house, but has decided to move home to Mom and Dad's CLEAN house with a well stocked fridge, and dinner every night! He can save some money and get a lot more studying done. 

This was taken last year at our older son's college graduation.

So - welcome home Justin! I am thrilled you are back, as long as you do your own laundry and NO PARTIES!!!!  ;) Love you Honey!

anyone else have a iMac?

I have been given a friendship award from Catherine de the Cups, and am unable to copy it over. Does anyone have a Mac and can tell me how to do this? I love my computer; this is the first bump in the road I've encountered with it (well except for the fact that Cutest Blog on the Block doesn't offer anything compatible with a Mac.) 
Tell me what I'm doing wrong! I think it's something simple. . . I am soooooo not a computer person, that's why I love the Mac. It's sooooo user-friendly.
Help! Thanks!

Friday, February 20, 2009

Signs of Spring!

One of the blogs I love to visit is Cynthia's Cottage Design (check it out if you aren't already aware of her gorgeous blog). And today her post reminded me of the some of the good things about living in Southern California. Now mind you, yesterday I was dreaming of snow, much to the dismay of Cynthia from Applestone Cottage (check her out too! What a Sweetheart!). She woke up to snow which is something I would LOVE to do. 

Well, as I was wandering around the backyard this morning waiting for my two little ones to hurry up and get their business done, I noticed . . . ready? BUDS! So I thought I would share some of my "buds in the backyard" with those of you who won't get to see these for a little while yet. And once again I will l remark to you - TRADE YA!!! ;) 

Enjoy some of the simpler little things in life we need to take the time to appreciate.

My pot of daisies and mullions bells on the patio.

The Mullions Bells are just the most happy tiny flowers! 

And daisies make me SMILE!

But Hydrangeas! Now they are my favorite. I will remember to take pictures later in Spring, when these bushes absolutely go bananas!!!! They are just stunning. I have 7 bushes total and they do me proud! See the buds?

And my Plum Tree. I have three of these gorgeous trees and they smell like Heaven when they are covered in blooms. My camera did not want to focus on the blooms! But they are there, the two pink ones in the center!

Even the Sweet Pea bush (which unfortunately doesn't have a scent - can you imagine?) is flowering. This will be absolutely covered with blooms later on. It is a gorgeous bush, but unfortunately the bumble bees love them too. I've counted as many as 14 bumble bees at once around one bush. (yes, I really could count them. They land and stay for a while!)  I have 2, one on either end of the patio. 
Well I hope you enjoyed my meanderings this morning! HAGD! Karen

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Teacups & such

I've been thinking. What do I have that I love, that some of you might enjoy seeing? What can I share?

My teacups!!

My maternal grandmother started all of us granddaughters (there were 8 of us) on collections - I think as soon as we could walk. And every Christmas we'd get $2 and a teacup and saucer. And they went straight into our Hope Chests! I love them. I inherited a few more when she died. I inherited a few more when my Mom died. And I've purchased a few more that I fell in love with over the years.

So - I thought I'd share a few. While they are all my favorites - these are probably my most favorites. So far. . . (he he he)

The bottom just says "Royal Albert - Bone China - England" with the picture of a crown

Now this one says "Royal Grafton - Bone China - made in England" with a crown

I love this one! I bought it, don't remember where. It says "Duchess - Fine Bone China - England" with the picture of a crown

And my favorite teapot! And it just says "Windsor - made in England"

I have no clue what any of that means. I do remember Grandma telling me to only buy China that is made in England. I was too young or dumb to ask her why?

Anyway - my friend Joy and I went antiquing last Monday - and look what I found! (sorry, I was so excited when I got it home that I just took it out of the bag, set it on the table and took the picture.)

Now I know why I jumped straight into love of this set . . . 

I already had this one!

Same design, different inscription on the bottom. And look at the differences in the cup and saucers!

Don't know what's up with that, but I love them both! And I really really love the teapot!

So I'm going to Google it all tomorrow when I'm not so tired, and if I learn anything, I'll share what I find out with you. I think it's about time I understand all of this. Course if anyone knows some of the answers - jump right in and tell me! 

That's it for today. But something kind of unexpected happened last weekend that I keep meaning to tell you about, but ... I'll save it for tomorrow.

Thanks for visiting. Tell me what you think about a few of my teacups! I love hearing from all of you! Karen

Tuesday, February 17, 2009


Golly I have no time for this this morning, I'm going to be late for work, but just had to respond. This just sounds too fun.

Christine from Wash, Fold, Put away, Repeat "tagged" me because I spent my morning reading her 7 POSTS!  A "bag tag".  (I don't know how to post a link, and don't have time to learn right now, sorry Christine!!!) But let her know you did it too, in addition to me!

Here are the rules for the tag

1. Post a picture of whatever bag you are carrying as of late. No, you cannot go up to your closet and pull out that cute little purse you used back before you had kids. I want to know what you carried today or the last time you left the house. No cheating!

2. How much it costs =).  And this is not to judge. It is for entertainment purposes only. So, spill it. And, if there is a story to go along with how you obtained it, I'd love to hear it.

3. Tag some friends. And link back to this post so people know what the heck you're showing everyone your bag. 
OK ladies, show your stuff! And be HONEST!!!

Here's mine. 

And I'm kind of embarrassed (notice I didn't say mortified, just kind of) at how messy it was inside, but oh well! That's just the way it is!

It is a Cettu.  (pronounced sit-too)

I bought it at a friend of mine's Boutique in downtown Glendora. 
I had no intention of buying a purse when I walked in, I was looking for a birthday present. But it just kind of slammed me! It was perfect for me. 
I honestly can't remember how much it cost, I think it was about $240 (YIKES!) Like I said I had no intention, but I am soooooo picky when it comes to purses. And this one was exactly what I like.

the side, with the little pockets on both sides perfect for my cell phone.

The back zipper compartment, perfect for my keys. They are out of the way because with my car having keyless ignition, I never need my keys anymore. It is perfect.

My only 2 complaints would be the lining is made from something like flannel and it is kind of clingy.  And it can become quite HEAVY. But that just makes me clean it out more often. Change weighs quite a bit when you just keep throwing it in.

But it is the perfect size, I love the length of the straps, and it's different and cute and I have unexpectedly gotten just a ton of compliments on it. I really don't even notice other people's purses. I guess that's why this tag seemed so fun to me! 

TADA! Thanks Christine!!!

Now - TAG - you're it! If you read this - join the fun!