Friday, December 24, 2010

More Info and Many many thanks

Let nothing disturb you

Let nothing frighten you

All things are passing

God alone does not change

Patience achieves everything

Whoever has God lacks nothing

God alone suffices - St. Teresa
The words above certainly speak to me, and I will be reading them frequently in the months ahead.
I want to thank ALL of you who have sent your love and wishes to me these past few days.  Believe me, I do feel your collective arms around me.  To think that I would receive such support from all across the country would have been inconcievable just a few years ago.  Your friendships mean so much to me now.  The phone never stops ringing, and the house is grand central station.  My kitchen counters are loaded down with food.  My kids are here, and they are taking great care of me.  My mind is so adled, I just tell them to make all the plans, just make sure I'm in the car with them if they go somewhere.  I have bronchitis, so went to the doctor yesterday morning.  The cough syrup makes me very drousy and rummy, so I sleep, which is good.  On the way home from the doc's, I made my son stop at the local furniture store and I bought myself a new glider chair.  I have wanted one forever.  It will be delivered next week.
Now, a few thoughts, I know there are no answers for, I'm just putting them down because writing helps.
Why did he leave me?  Why now?  This man who brightened the days and lives of so many people, but mostly mine.  Was his job here on earth done?  I know he will be an exceptional angel.  He loves doing for others.  I can just suppose God needed him for other work, and knows I am strong enough to carry on here on earth.  I don't feel that strong right now, but I know I am.
That's all.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

My Dear One is Gone

My heart is so heavy with grief today.  Yesterday morning I slept a little late.  We were expecting the Vet at 8a.m. and I jumped up and called to Alan.  No answer.  Went to the bathroom and looked out the window.  The lights were not on in the barn.  I went into the living room and there he was, dead in the recliner, having had a heart attack in the night.  It is such a shock, and I am somewhat numb, but so grateful for my community of friends and loved ones who have embraced me.  I looked outside yesterday and there was a City worker and about a dozen kids cleaning my yard of all the storm waste that has been there for a couple of weeks.  Another friend brought a crockpot of soup, and another vacuumed and washed my kitchen floor.  My nieces brought my son Chad up yesterday, and my son Michael and DIL and SIL arrived today.  So much to do.  I feel like I have lead in my body.  You won't be hearing from me for awhile.  I have so many decisions to make. Thanks to all of you for your wonderful comments and support on Facebook.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Time for a Rest

Phew.  Last day of the Market.  The atmosphere was very similar to that in school on the last day before summer vacation.  When they rang the bell signaling the start, everyone cheered.  Then, at 3 when they rang the bell for the end, it was more cheers, hugs, goodbyes.  What a great year it has been for me.  I have three months to restore my inventory, and back I will go.
Today I had the pleasure of being next to the girls from Hopewell Farms.  They were so much fun!  What a couple of characters.  We had a really good band playing all day, so we did alot of dancing behind our tables.  (I said behind, not on)  The dancing helped us stay warm since we were outside.  I much prefer being outdoors.

Hopewell Farms was offering everything at $1 a pound as customer appreciation day.  Above is $4 worth.

Here are two of our volunteers.  They work so hard.  See the hat on the right?  I simply MUST find a pattern for that.

This girl was visiting from Hong Kong, and had just bought the hat she is wearing.  She thought she needed a picture with me.  She might come out to the farm to visit us tomorrow, but we may have snow by then.  Who knows.

Now, notice the hat I am wearing?

And notice who is wearing it now?  Like I said, they buy them right off my head.

Another one finds her hat.

So, I've been busy dying rovings in my crock pots this week.  I received about 40 pounds two weeks ago, and I can hardly wait to start spinning it.

Here are some of the rovings I dyed after the fiber was washed and carded.

I had dyed this "in the wool", meaning before it was carded, this summer.  I sent all the assorted colors to the processor and this is how it turned out.  Gorgeous!

And here is how it is spinning up.

Tomorrow it is cookie day, baking and shipping.  What a change in direction.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

!~@#%#* Racoons!!!

I'm not very happy with the racoons that live in our old growth fir trees.  This was my sweet little Mrs. Santa holding a garland and smiling out at the world.
Those little stinkers not only tore her hat off, they pulled all the stuffing out of her head!!!  This is worst than the Scarecrow of Oz, whose straw could be replaced when it fell out.  Mrs. Santa's head was ripped apart and her hat torn to shreds.

The Hubster informs me it was more likely the squirrels that did the damage, since the polyester fiberfill makes for cozy nests.
Never a dull moment.  I went to Lynden today to visit my favorite thrift store, and had to take all of the high roads.  The drainage ditches were all overflowing, and most of the houses had waterfront property.  It continues to rain, though the threat of the river flooding seems to have subsided.
It amazes me to see you all on the other side of the country suffering from blizzards and cold.  It was only a few weeks ago we were in the same situation.  I knew we were in for it this winter.

Our Bazaar at the Senior Center was a HUGE success last weekend.  It took me a few days to recover, since I worked all day Friday getting ready for it, then all the work at the event itself.  I also made soup and corn muffins for all of the vendors and volunteers, and they were thrilled with that.  I figured we would all be in a better state of mind if we had some good food to eat instead of lunching on the bake sale goodies.  Ha.

This is Claire.  She is the sweetest woman, and has been a friend for several years.  She is a talented artist and painted a picture for me last year of Eve and Pippi.  Isn't she beautiful?  She always wears a hat, and even has one crocheted out of Walmart bags when they used to be teal green.  In her younger days, she was the fashion artist for the department store adds.  Remember those, when the dresses were sketched instead of photographed?

Well, time to leave for "Kept In Stitches".

Friday, December 10, 2010


Elf, that's me, but I do NOT belch.  I remember my boys tried to teach me how when they were young.  It must be a guy thing, for sure.  Now aren't you glad I shared that with you?

This is what I got for my birthday from my son and DILLY.  They know how much I love to decorate outside, and also thought I could use this at the Market, or for cookies.  It's actually galvanized steel, so it will be very durable.  I can see it with little pots of primroses in the spring, or sedum, or balls of yarn. . . .
I'll be doing up a nice one for the Senior Center's Christmas Bazaar tomorrow.
You may be wondering where I stand with my job there.  Oh, boy, you never know from one day to the next.  I still have my job, and will for another year, I THINK.  We lost our cook yesterday, which means they will be bringing food to me from Bellingham, and I will have to serve it each day.  I've gotten very discouraged a few times and have almost quit, but I want to help that center to grow and be a place where seniors WANT to come.
Tomorrow is the big Christmas Bazaar, and I have cancelled at the Market to be there.  Wednesday we had a power outage due to high winds, so only three of us were there and we decorated the Christmas tree and spruced up the place.  It looks really cute.  I have made a HUGE pot of chili soup for the volunteers at the Bazaar to eat while working.  Lots to do today, so it will be a full day, as well as tomorrow.

Why is it you can't capture the beauty of Christmas lights?  I tried this without a flash, and it is really dull.  This is my hops trellis which we string with lights every year.  It is so beautiful.  It is done with colored lights this year, and then we used the big clear lights to accent. 

Time for body maintenance and organizing.
Later, Baby.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Market Basket

The Market seems to monopolize my time these days.  Only two more Saturdays, then a break until April.  I'm looking forward to my "hiatus" to experiment with some more felting projects and catch up on my dying and spinning.

On Friday, I called the Market manager and asked her if I could be outside.  I feel that if people are cold, they are more inclined to buy something warm, right?  So, I had a beautiful location, with my tent set up right in front of the Pavilion.  Other vendors offered me heaters, or thought I was just plain nuts.  But I did really well, kept warm, and had a terrific time.
It amazes me that there are so many fresh vegetables still available, especially since we have had such cold weather.  In this picture is Hopewell Farms, who are right down the road from me.  Well, actually, just about all of the farmers are "just down the road" from me, in County terms.
That is something that took me awhile to get used to when I moved here.  If you don't live in Bellingham, you are "out in the County".  It's like the hinterlands, or the North Pole to the City Dwellers.
This is Rabbit Fields Farm.  I just love her display and her products, although if she was really Rabbit field, she would have nothing to show at the market!!  It's quite interesting to also note that most of the farmers are women!

This is our manager, Caprice.  I had to go through a strict inspection to be qualified as a farmer here at the market.  They inspected the farm in September, and I demonstrated all that I do with the fiber, and I have "qualified".  It seems everyone is more friendly and accepting of me now.  I know they had doubts that everything I was selling was actually from my alpacas, but I showed them.
Now, last, but certainly not least, since this is the master of the household, Leroy is modeling a cria coat that I had just repaired.  He thinks this is very nice and warm, and didn't want it removed.  Sorry, Leroy, Centennial still needs it.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Our House is just a Little House, but GOD knows where we are

Welcome!  Please come in and join me with a cup of hot chocolate while I show you my Christmas decorations.  We have a very small house, so it will only take a short time, so make yourself comfortable.
Most of our decorations have been purchased at the Annual Fall Craft and Antique show in Lynden, produced by my friends Judy and Trudy.  This wreath was bought about 15 years ago!  I'm amazed it is still in such great shape.

Two ladies, Linda and Sheri, until recently, always had a booth with the most incredible tree ornaments.  They must have sold thousands of little snowmen over the years.  I bought at least one a year from them and miss them at the show.  I guess that makes my ornaments "retired" so very valuable!!

I stitched this little soldier when my first son was just a baby, so that would make it 30 years old.

I could only find Chad's cross stitched mitten ornament this year, but we all have one, stitched by me when my eyes were in better shape.

My husband loved these birds, made by a woman in Eastern Washington who used to come to the Lynden show.

Another "retired" snowman.

And another bird.  We like how they are set on wheat stalks, and it brings back fond memories of our years in Wheat country in Pullman, Wa.

We vacation every year in Sunriver Oregon where we own a timshare condo named "The Pines".  So appropriate, since it is surrounded by pine trees with pine cones all over the ground.  I bring bags of them home with me every year, add some sparkles and ribbon, and enjoy them on the tree.
I love this ornament.  It was given to me for my birthday by a very dear friend.

And then in keeping with the Lithuanian tradition, we always have a pair of mittens in the tree.

You will have noticed in all the pictures, the garlands strung of nuts, berries and cinnamon sticks.  They were the FIRST major Christmas investment DH and I made when we were newlyweds, and I do believe it was a good one, since we celebrated our 38th anniversary this year.  The garlands are made of a resin type material and were originally infused with a spice scent.  We have even used them outdoors, and they are still in excellent condition.

Well, that about covers it.  So, I'll get my cup of chocolate and we can do some serious gossiping.