Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy New Year!!!

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas, and I wish you everything good in the new year. We'll be back after the celebrations.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Merry Christmas!

Hello all Gramm and Crackers fans! Merry Christmas to you all! I know it's been a long time since I wrote to you, and I really have missed you. Life sometimes gets in the way of the things we want to do, though, and we have to take care of other things first. Hopefully, starting in the new year, I will be able to concentrate and get back to the things I love. I want to wish you all all the blessings you deserve, now and in the year to come. Make the effort to spend more time with the people you love and the friends you care about. Eat dessert first, because you never know when this will be your last meal. Never let your loved ones go away from you without telling them you love them. I always tell mine to drive carefully, too, no matter if they are new or seasoned drivers. It's a habit I picked up from my mother, who was a great lady and a great influence in my life. I miss her every day.
It's a little blurry. My camera was having issues. That's our beautiful
tree in the background, and Crackers is holding her very own tree!
Keep the spirit of Christmas is your hearts and life will be a better place. Crackers wishes you all the best for the new year, too. We WILL be back. Things ARE looking up. And we DO love all of you. Have the best Christmas ever!

Friday, November 23, 2012

Pumpkin Pies!

I'm really sorry for my absence these last weeks. Having a few health problems. I have to take pain medication regularly, which I hate!!!!, and I spend a lot of time on a heating pad.But enough of that. Let me tell you about Monday and Tuesday of this week. I spent from 8:30 am to 2:00 pm on Monday and 8:30 am to 5:00 pm on Tuesday making pumpkin pies from scratch! There was a group of 6 of us that learned to take the whole squash and bake and peel it and make it into pies! We made 80 pies! 40 of them went to the Men's Gospel Mission in Medford, 20 went to a home here in Gold Hill, and the others were split between the 6 of us and the custodians who cleaned up after us. (Just minor stuff like mopping and taking out the trash. We did all the major stuff. I didn't want you to think we didn't clean up after ourselves!) A few went to some other people, too. I got three pies out of it, one of which we gave to Hally's Girl Scout leader. We had a photographer and feature writer from the Mail Tribune, which is the paper here in Jackson County, and they did a very nice article on us. Here is a link to the article in the Mail Tribune, and here are some photos I took.

This is Gene, with his reciprocating saw.
Those blue hubbard squash are HARD!!

All cut up. seeds scraped out and washed. This is
only about half of the squash we cooked.

Coming out of the oven.

Cooked squash waiting to have the tender meat scraped out.

On the second day, we fixed Quiche Lorraine for lunch!


These are the two additional pies I baked for our
Thanksgiving dinner....blackberry and apple.

Well, that's it for now. I'll be back next week to show you a cute project. Enjoy you holiday weekend. Love to all,

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Hallowe'en is near!

Well, Halloween is almost here! Two more days. My grandkids are so excited! Hally has decided to be a pirate, but I still don't know about Cameron. We are probably going to Rogue River, where there is a free Halloween Carnival and trick-or-treating through the downtown shopping area. Then there is free hot dogs and chili! So it sounds like a pretty good place to go.

My daughter, Amanda, made the cutest Halloween blocks. She saw them on Pinterest and decided to make her own. We looked at the originals and got measurments, then she had the wood cut and went to town. Of course, hers are not exactly like the ones on Pinterest, but they are better, because SHE made them.

Aren't they cute?

Then, her oldest buy just turned 8 and got to start Cub Scouts. He was very excited to go, but a little shy, so his momma went with him to his first meeting. And if mom goes, then little brother has to go, too! Well, it just so happened that they were making Halloween blocks, too, and she had enough for both boys to make a set. You talk about two excited little boys! They were so proud when they brought them home and mom took pictures to send to me!

The top set is Cyric's and the bottom set is Rafferty's, who had just a little help from mom. I think they did a great job! It's a really cute idea....Just 2x4's and some paint, with googly eyes and crepe paper for the mummy.

These are the two proud boys. They'd just had their hair cut when these pictures were taken. 

That's it for today! I am wishing all of you a Happy Hallowe'en and here's hoping you get lots of loot and have lots of fun! Love to all,

Monday, October 22, 2012

I'm back....again!

Okay....this time I really am back! Wow, what a few months we've had! First the surgeries this summer, then a looooong trip in September to spend time with my hubby's mother, who is not well at all. Then, when we got home, it was time again for doctors' appointments, and then my husband had a mini-stroke, or TIA, so now more doctors. Then I found out that I have diabetes. I've been borderline for about 25 years, but I finally crossed over the border. So a big lifestyle change is coming up. I have an appointment with my doctor on the 30th to discuss what those changes will be and how we will handle all this. That's not all, but it's enough! But I am back and I will stay back.

To start anew, I am posting some pictures of the September trip. Crackers went with us, and since it was the longest trip she had ever been on, she had to ride on the dash all the way there!

We headed due south into California to end up at my sister-in-law's home in Menifee, in southern California. We stayed two weeks with them, making daily trips to visit Thelma, my husbands mother.

My husband, Chuck with his mother,
Thelma, and Crackers, too.

This is my great-niece, Taylor, in front of her
classroom at school. With Crackers, of course!

We went from southern California east to Southern Nevada to visit our youngest daughter and two grandsons, along with two other grandsons who live with their dad, my husband's brother and family, and my brother-in-law, whose wife was in California with her mom.

Our daughter's apartment was bat-attacked!
Rafferty and Cyric in front of their school.
Isaac in his classroom. He is the son of my oldest daughter, Deseret.
Our youngest daughter, Amanda, with
 her dad and her best friend, our "other" daughter, Shelley.

Shelley's kids Shaylee, Brighton and Wesley. They
call us gramma and grampa, and we love it!

Crackers with Aunt Lois, one of my sister-in-laws.
 Her husband, Calvin, is my husband's brother.

Crackers with Uncle Jim, a brother-in-law.
His wife, Debbie, was in California with her mom.

Deseret's oldest son, Hal.

We stayed there a few days, went to soccer games and a barbecue and then went north to Elko, Nevada, where we have our two oldest children and their families.

Crackers with Cody and Jason,
my oldest son Dale's stepsons.

Hannah and Crackers at Hannah's soccer game.
She is Deseret's oldest daughter.
Hannah had a sleepover after the soccer game.
This is our youngest grandson, SJ. He's really a pistol!
Madison and Kacey, the daughters of
Deseret's boyfriend, Dustin.
After a few days there, another soccer game and the start of the balloon festival...........

....we finally headed home. We arrived tired and very happy to be home. We did have a good time, but it was good to be home and be able to sleep in our own bed!

Just one more picture I have to show you. It's sooooooo me!!!

So that's the trip in a nutshell! A lot has happened since then, but that's another story. I hope you all had good summers and are enjoying the fall.  Love to all.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Yardstick Frame

I'm back! I have had surgery on both hands this summer and now it's all done! I will be getting the stitches out of my left hand in a week and then I just have to build my strength back up in them. But I'm just glad it's over!

I hope all of you have been enjoying your summer. There were so many things I wanted to do on this blog this summer, but not being able to use my hands was a definite drawback. It will still be a little slow until the hands are fully healed, but at least I can type now. And take pictures. And do easy projects if I'm careful.

So the first one is a yardstick frame. It's simple and easy and you can make them for gifts or for yourselves. Start with two yardsticks. I was making mine for a 5x7" photo, so I cut my yardstick in these lengths: 4 pieces 8" long and 4 pieces 6" long.

I got my yardsticks at Lowe's and they were wider than the ones I use for measuring, that I've had for years, so you have to go by the width of your yardsticks to get the right measurements. Say you are framing a 5x7" photo. You subtract 1/2" of each measurement, giving you 41/2" and 6 1/2". Then add the width of the yardstick and cut your pieces that long. You will need 4 pieces of each measurement.

Now you will need a square, which is a tool for making sure your corners are square. You can use a protractor if you have one, or you can use an uncut piece of paper or cardstock, which should be perfectly square. Lay down your first long piece along one edge of the paper and then lay a short one along an adjacent side. Make sure they are perfectly aligned and square, then lay another long piece and short piece. Notice they make a pattern when laid right. 

Now you are ready to place the next layer. I will use the above picture as a reference. The piece at the bottom of the frame goes all the way to the corner of the square, while the piece on the left does not. It butts up next to the first piece. In your second layer, the piece on the left will go all the way down to the corner and the piece on the bottom will butt up to it.

This makes your frame strong, by overlapping all the joints on the two layers. Glue them together carefully, making sure they stay squared up. I put wax paper under them to keep any stray glue off the table. Use Elmer's Glue or wood glue, but DO NOT use school glue or hot glue. They won't hold!(This is the voice of experience talking.)

Lay a big heavy book on it to hold it in place until it dries. After the frame is glued and dried overnight, cut a piece of mat board or poster board to the back. Glue only three sides so you have a space to slide your picture into the frame.

I drilled a hole in each upper corner and tied on some jute to hang it, and added a jute bow and some buttons for decoration.

It still doesn't feel finished, but I'll leave it alone for now. When I come back to it, maybe I'll change some things. I do that sometimes. Walk away and let it rest, and then when I see it again, I know just what it needs.

Well, that's it for today. I don't know when I'll post again. I'm not keeping a schedule right now, but it will be soon. When school starts again, I'll get back to a schedule. For now, hold your head up high and don't be afraid to try new things. You can always re-do them if you need to. Love to all,

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Photo bookmarks

We made bookmarks yesterday. I saw these cute photo bookmarks all over the Internet and decided to try them with the kids. We took several photos before we got one that looked right, so I'll tell you the secret: give them a water bottle to hold and make them put their hands way down to the bottom so the bottom of the bottle doesn't show (the top will be cut off) and then make them stretch on their tippie-toes really far. If they make a face or lose their balance, that's even better! You'll see what I mean in these photos.


Hally actually has one foot in off the floor as she starts to fall over, which makes it really look like she's hanging in mid-air, while Cameron has his tongue sticking out, which makes him seem to be hanging on for dear life! And none of that was planned. I just happened to capture it in the photos.

Print out you photos. I chose a 5x7 size, but you can choose your own. Then cut the kids out. Don't leave any of the background when you cut, because that will ruin the illusion. Glue them onto cardstock and cut them out again. I left an edge of cardstock around mine so there would be a little of the bright color showing on the front. And I just used a glue stick, because the next step takes care of keeping it in place. Cover the bookmark, front and back, with clear contact paper, and cut out again, leaving a little edge of contact around the edge to keep the bookmark sealed. Punch a hole at the top of the hands and put a tassel or piece of ribbon through it, and !Voila! When you put the bookmark in a book, they look like they are hanging from the ribbon or tassel. The kids love theirs, and I bet yours will, too.

Aren't those cute? I think they would make cute little somethings to send to all the grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, etc. You could make Valentine's out of them, too. Teacher gifts, etc. etc. etc. Have fun with it. We will probably make a bunch more, using different pictures. If you make some, send me a picture and I will post it here on the blog.

Just one last thing. Crackers had to get in on the fun, too!

You can see how I made it look like the rope is around her foot. Now go take some pictures and have some fun. Crackers and I will be waiting for some photos! Love to all,