Wednesday, March 03, 2021

March Comes Marching In

The month has Marched in with sunshine and wind.  I am happy March is here because that means the end of winter is in sight.  It is the first Wednesday of March and that means Wednesday Hodgepodge.

 From this Side of the Pond

1. Is March coming in like a lion where you live? Aslan, Simba, Elsa, The Cowardly Lion...your favorite 'famous' lion? 

            So far, March has come in hopping around like a bunny on weed.  Cold, cold nights and sunny days.  At least there hasn’t been snow.

            Without a doubt, Aslan is my lion of choice!  There is so much symbolism in CS Lewis’s depiction of Aslan.


2. In what way do you 'march to the beat of your own drum'? 

            Most people live in their homes and communities all their lives.  From childhood, I have been an adventurer.


3. What item that you don't have already, would you most like to own? Any chance of that happening soon? 

            I have everything I need and most everything I want.  We have been looking for furniture for our family room.  In the near future, we will be purchasing chairs and a sofa.


4. March is National Flour Month...are you a baker? Cookies-cakes-or pies...your favorite sweet treat to bake? What's the last non-sweet thing you made that called for flour?

            I enjoy baking pies and cookies.  Cakes, not at all.

            It has been so long since I baked a sweet treat, I honestly am not sure.  Maybe the Christmas cookies I baked in December?  As for a non-sweet flour food, I guess it was the dinner rolls I baked for Thanksgiving.


5. There are 31 days in the month of March...where were you and what were you doing when you were 31? If you haven't hit that milestone yet, then tell us where you were and what you were doing 31 months ago? (if math is not your thing, that would be August 3, 2018)

            When I turned 31 in March of that year, I was living in the jungles of Papua, Indonesia, which is the western half of the island of New Guinea (which is directly north of Australia, for those who don’t know South East Asian geography).  In March, we were living in mission housing away from our home because I had just given birth to my third child, a son, and was waiting for him to be old enough to receive a whooping cough vaccination since there was a breakout of that disease in the village where we lived.

Yes, he was adorable!

6.  Insert your own random thought here. 

        March means SPRING!

Friday, February 26, 2021

Bye, February!

 Hello!  It's FRIDAY!  TGIF, right?  And TGIFFF!  Thank God It's Friday Fave Fives!  It was a quiet week, but that doesn't mean there aren't things to make me thankful.  Here is Willow's Week.

1.  Everyone around here is talking about 'warm weather'.  And it has been sunny most of the days this week, so we have been out for walks.  Yay!

2.  Sunny days often mean nights where the moon is shining.  I love those clear evenings and am thankful it is nearing full moon, too.

3.  Cold weather has reminded me how much I appreciate and am thankful for a warm, heated home.

4.  Second haircut since moving.  I love my new stylist.  The Professor and New Boy got haircuts this week, too.  I am so thankful that salons are open here.

5.  I don't believe in chance meetings.  I think this was supposed to happen.  On Saturday, we were in a locally owned coffee shop where they roast their own beans.  While we were waiting for our coffee, we were talking to the owner who was in the process of roasting a batch of coffee beans in the shop.  Long story short, when the owner asked where we had moved from and we replied, another couple who was waiting for their coffee, too, piped up and said, "Really?  We recent moved here too and are from the town next to yours!"  We discovered so much in common that we met this week for morning coffee to get better acquainted.  We know we've found new friends!  That just doesn't happen by chance when the towns are 2,400 miles away.

Bonus:  I am really loving that book I am reading during Lent.  A Shepherd Looks at Psalm 23 by Philip Keller.  I highly recommend it!

Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Cleaning up February

        Good morning!  It's Wednesday.  The sun is out!  I'm feeling cheery!  Here is Wednesday Hodgepodge with Joyce's questions for this week.  Click the cute picture to add your own answers in a post.

                                                From this Side of the Pond

1. Your favorite cleaning product? Do you clean your own house or hire out? Most disliked household chore? What one chore do you not mind so much? 
            Windex is a miracle product for getting grandchildren's finger (and nose) prints off windows.  My own citrus scented vinegar spray is a close second for favorite cleaning product. 
            I have always cleaned my own house (except when I lived in the jungle and had house help).  I figure all the moving and activity will help keep me active.  However, I do not like cleaning the shower.  That's mostly because of the horrible odors of most cleaning products.  I don't mind dusting.

 2. It's Canned Food you use a lot of canned goods? What are the three canned items you purchase most often? Last thing you made using a canned ingredient? 
                We use canned sauces like salsa, spaghetti sauce, alfredo sauce.  Usually, I keep some canned beans available although I prefer to cook my own in large batches and freeze them in smaller amounts.  That way I can better control the amount of salt in the beans.
            Last week, I made nachos topped with refried beans--the beans were canned.

 3. Can of worms, anything can happen, can you imagine?, as best I can, kick the can down the road, more than one can take, no can do, not if I can help it...choose an idiom and tell us how you currently relate.
                CAN YOU IMAGINE?  My daughter and I love England and have traveled there twice together (and each at least twice with others).  Last week, we sat down to scroll through my photos of our 2019 trip and we both said,  "Can you imagine living there?"  "There" was numerous places in Southwest England.

Yeah, I could go on and on with pictures!

4.The last Tuesday in February is National Spa Day. Are you someone who enjoys a day at the spa? Last time you visited a spa? Do you have a favorite spa? Are salons open for business in your area? Have you made changes to your hair and nail routine since Corona hit? In what way? 
                I have been to only one spa and only two or three times to that one.  Skamania Lodge in Southwest Washington.  Located overlooking the Columbia River, it has hiking trails, hotel accommodations and restaurants as well as the spa, hot tub, and swimming pools.  When we visit my brother and sister-in-law in Oregon, we drive up there for dinner and a couple of times we have treated ourselves to a spa visit.
                As for salons in my area, yes, they're open.  I have scheduled a haircut for this week.  This is only the second cut I have had since lockdowns began almost a year ago.

 5. Believe it or not this is the last Hodgepodge of the month. In one sentence sum up your February. 
                Snow, rain, sleet, ice
                did not make February nice.

 6. Insert your own random thought here.
                The sun is out, the snow is melting, and the temperatures are rising.  I am thankful.

Friday, February 19, 2021

Another Week of Winter

Hello!  It's Friday! Susanne hosts Friday Fave Fives and I love joining.  It makes me always be more thoughtful through the days, watching for those thankful moments.  Here is Willow's Week on a snowy day.   

1.  Our microwave died (nope, that's not the fave).  As soon as our older daughter heard about our household disaster, she said, "No problem!  I have one in the garage that came from my rental house."  So... thanks to her, we have had a working microwave while we look for a replacement for ours.

2.  On Sunday, we took a drive in the county south of us.  The roads were clear and it was wonderful to see a new area.  I wrote a blog post with several photos if you want to see more snow covered barns and old houses.

3.  After our drive, we met the family for a winter hike at the arboretum. There, too, the paved trails and roads were clear.  It was great to get out and have a walk.

4.  The weather outside is frightful!  Snow!  I am thankful that we have a warm house and warm clothes.  And even occasional sunshine!

5.  Another blanket story.   Little Warrior (our younger grandson) loves his 'meema blanket'.  Evidently a doggie (who no longer lives in the house) loved it, too, and chewed holes in it.  Meema to the rescue.  Honestly, sometimes I wondered if the worst of the damage could be repaired.  But I persisted.  The blanket is back home on LW's bed.

Wednesday, February 17, 2021

A Penny for My Thoughts

Wednesday Hodgepodge.  (If you click on the drawing below, the link will take you to Joyce's blog)

From this Side of the Pond

1. This week's Hodgepodge lands on Ash Wednesday which signals the beginning of Lent. Do you mark this season in some way? If so tell us more. Did you grow up 'celebrating' Lent? Is attending church part of your weekly routine? Are churches open for in-person worship where you live? 
        Although I did not grow up in a tradition that observes Lent, I have become more involved in the past decade or two.  My art group buddies always do a Lent Bible study (and an Advent one, too).  This year we are reading Phillip Keller's book A Shepherd Looks at Psalm 23.  We meet via Zoom every Friday morning anyway (they all live in CA and I am the one who moved to OH) so we just move our focus to our current study book.
        Our church here has services on Saturday night and Sunday morning.  Usually, we attend the Saturday service with our daughter and grandson.  The church is open for in person services with distancing protocols in place.

2. When is the last time you sat beside a 'real' fire? Do you have a fireplace in your home? Wood or gas logs? Favorite thing cooked over a fire?
        I love fires!  We now have an outdoor fireplace which we used the last time in early November.

        Our new home has a gas fireplace which can be redone into a wood burning fireplace.  This we plan to do and use an insert to help heat this area of the house. 

3. Something that's currently got you fired up? 
        What has me fired up?  People's lack of preparation for emergencies.  Nuf said.

4. February also happens to be National Cabbage Day. Who knew? Do you like cabbage? Is cabbage on your menu Wednesday? Of the following cabbage dishes which is your favorite-coleslaw (mayo or vinegar?), sauerkraut, cabbage rolls, cabbage soup, kielbasa and cabbage, grilled cabbage, bubble and squeak, kimchi, or haluski? 
        Not a cabbage fan.  I will eat coleslaw if it is made with a vegan mayo.  Many years ago, our friends gave us some kimchi which they had made.  I liked it.

5. Do you hang on to pennies? What do you do with them? Last thing you purchased for $1.00? Last thing you purchased for $5.00? 
        I collect pennies (and nickels and dimes).   My uncle got me started in coin collecting when I was about six years old.  I still find coins fascinating.

6. Insert your own random thought here. 
        It is vewy vewy cold here.  I woke up this morning to my phone showing me that it was 1F.  Now it is a balmy 21F.  Snow and ice everywhere.  And more snow and ice expected.  BUT!  I have heat!  And I am so very thankful for that.

Tuesday, February 16, 2021

A Winter Drive

 We decided to venture out on a Sunday afternoon drive and explore the area south of our town.  The roads were clear, but the fields were snow covered.

I love the old farmhouses, churches, schools, and barns!
I would love to know the stories behind these buildings.

And now, we are snowbound for the next few days.
I'm glad we were able to get in a scenic drive between storms.

Friday, February 12, 2021

More Winter Faves

Happy New Year (if you are in China)!  Happy Friday!  Here is a list of my Five Fave things for which I am thankful this week.  It doesn't include the obvious things like a warm house, hot coffee, cozy jackets, boots and gloves.  I am thankful for those things, too.  Always.  Here is a link to Friday Fave Fives if you want to join us.

1.  Well, there is still a pile of snow on the ground and more expected.  This is winter.  Did you know that there are only thirty-six days until spring?  And today is Chinese New Year.  It's the year of the OX.  What part of this is a fave?  The thirty-six days until spring.  But who's counting?

2.  But since it is still winter, what can I appreciate about it?  Icicles are pretty.  When they're finished with being an outdoor decoration, they just melt away.

3.  We were able to order some window coverings for our house this week.  It will take some time to have them delivered and installed, but at least now we have one more home upgrade almost off our to do list.

4.  Our new library is amazing!  Evidently, we have passed the time frame when a limited number of books can be checked out.  Now our accepted number of books is ninety-nine!  Yes, 99.  [I wonder if I can actually reach that number of books to check out and read all at once.]

5.  And at the library, we have been able to check out the British series Lewis.  We've watched all the Endeavor and Morse series, and now Lewis is carrying on the story of murder mysteries in Oxford.  I'm glad we can get them locally.

BONUS:  I finally finished this cozy (and gigantic) blanket for The New Boy.  He wanted it BIG.  He chose the colors and yarn.  He's taller than I am now, so you can imagine how big this thing is.

A New Year. A New Blanket.

Have a warm safe weekend!

Friday, February 05, 2021

Hello, February

In the bleak midwinter...

1.  Here we are in cold, cold midwinter.  As I write this, it is snowing.  The temperature is a balmy 31F.  But in the night, it will be half of that.  This is the time I look for things to warm me, my feet, my tummy, my spirit.  Friday Fave Fives is an encouraging way to cheer us all up.

2.  The grandkids had a snow day (actually, more than one; and today is another).  Younger Daughter was working from home and took a long lunch so she could take her two sledding.  We joined them.  Yes, we sledded.

Younger Daughter's Bernese Mountain dog was in doggie heaven.

3.  After sledding, The Professor treated us to hot chocolate!  Yum!  Making memories!

4.  I made another pair of socks!  Nothing cheers like warm feet covered in handknit socks.

5.  I am a total garden geek.  This winter I have been growing ginger indoors.  I had no idea if the ginger I had bought at the grocery store and accidently let sprout would grow.  But I tried.  And guess what!  All four rhizomes I planted in pots are sprouting and growing.  Squeee!

That tiny green sprout will turn in to a tall tall plant.
Yes, that is what a ginger plant looks like.

These are five things that have warmed my heart (and feet) this week.  I am thankful, even in the bleak midwinter.

Friday, January 29, 2021

Friday Fave Fives in the Middle of Winter

Hello!  It's Friday (night) and I am finally slowing down enough to finish thinking through and writing down my Friday Fave Fives.   I do love this exercise in thankfulness.  (follow THIS LINK and you will learn to love it, too.  There is so much encouragement in reading how other people see the blessings in their lives popping up.)

 1. and 2.  We scored a beautiful Amish made table!  It is living in our kitchen eating area.  There is a wonderful story that comes with it.  I happened to notice a lovely table and four chairs set on the local selling wall.  As I scrolled past, I realized it was being offered by someone we know.  I texted. She answered.  We bought it.  What I love most is (well, two things) that The New Boy remembers sitting at this table celebrating his seventh birthday!  AND when we went to pick it up, the owners said they are happiest that their table is going to a home where they know it will be used to celebrate more birthdays and family dinners for people who are their friends.

And Bananagrams has already been played on the table.

3.  I haven't been posting anything about my knitting lately.   But knitting is happening.  Mostly socks.  I love hand knit socks.  They are perfect foot wear for cold days.

4.  Planning my garden.  Since this year I am dealing with frost dates, I created a planting planning sheet for what I want to put in the garden.  You might notice through the weeks that I really enjoy my garden and am thankful that I have an area now that is large enough to actually grow a garden.

5.   I just have to mention the homeschooling again.  We are seeing how happy New Boy is.  For example, he read a book this week which he really enjoyed.  Would he have ever willingly picked up A Murder For Her Majesty and read it if it hadn't been part of his assignments?  Probably not.  But he liked it so much that he was sad when he was read that last page and closed the cover.  That's what I love about homeschooling.  I am so thankful to be able to have this experience with him.  (Which book will he love next?)

Bonus:  Did you notice that I didn't even mention how cold it is here?  Every time I leave home and then return, I think how thankful I am that I have a warm home and a furnace that keeps pumping out heat.

Wednesday, January 27, 2021

Wednesday Hodgepodge

                                               From this Side of the Pond

A Wednesday Welcome to you!  Here at Willow's Cottage, it is very very chilly.  But inside our cottage, there is heat and light.  Wednesday Hodgepodge is always fun, no matter the weather.  If you wish to participate, click on the picture above, and the link will take you to our host Joyce's blog.

1. Have you done more binge watching this past year than in 'normal' years? Any plans to break that habit in 2021? Tell us one or two shows you binged last year that you really liked. 
    I haven't really watched any more TV or movies in 2020.  Usually, we will watch some kind of show or movie after Jeopardy on evenings we are at home.  We did watch all the Endeavor and Inspector Morse episodes, and now we have begun watching Inspector Lewis.  (Do you see a trend here?  We love British murder mystery shows.  Have you seen Foyle's War?)

2. January 26th is Australia Day. Have you ever visited or lived in Australia? Have you ever tasted Vegemite, and if so what did you think?  Is a trip down under on your bucket list? We answered a question about travel three months ago (the October 21st Hodgepodge), but let's revisit now...where are you when it comes to planning or even imagining travel this year? 

    I have not yet visited Australia (although The Professor and Dr. Mike have).  We lived on the island just north of Australia (New Guinea), but never flew in and out of there via Australia.  Yes, I've eaten Vegemite--I'm not a big fan as it tastes bitter to me.  Nutella is better.

    A trip in the future?  Hopefully, we will get to visit Alaska as it is the only US state we have not visited.  Also, a trip back to California and Oregon to visit friends and family is high on my list.  And I can't forget Tennessee where two couples who are close friends are now living.  AND...Florida, to visit my cousin.

3. Something that zaps your energy? Something that energizes you? 

    What zaps my energy?  Not getting enough sleep.   What energizes me?  I love my daily walks (which I haven't been able to take for the past four days due to rain, snow and ice).  

4. On a scale of 1-10 what are your eating habits like these days? (1=all junk food all the time and 10= juicing every green thing in the frig) Healthiest meal you've eaten in the last week or so? 

    In general, my eating habits are 8-9.  I eat an almost completely whole food, plant based diet.  Lately, I've enjoyed a bit more chocolate since it was Christmas and then post-Christmas chocolate candy sale time.

5. What's your most often 'Back in my day....' thing to say? 

    Probably, I bring up memories from our years living in Papua, Indonesia.

6. Insert your own random thought here. 

    Our grandson The New Boy (seventh grade now!) has started homeschooling.  The Professor and I are teaching him.  As I type this, he is sprawled on the floor reading a fiction book set in York during the reign of Elizabeth I. What a great way to learn!

Friday, January 22, 2021

Quietly Blessed

It has been a mostly quiet week here at Willow's Cottage.  Not boring; just quiet.  I like weeks like this.  Here are some FRIDAY FAVE FIVES from Willow's Week.  Follow that link to read and share with others.

1.  Now I can explain the hint I mentioned in last week's Friday Fave Fives about getting information from some new friends.  This is what has excited us.  The New Boy (who is no longer new at all) asked his mother if he could switch to homeschool this semester.  The result is that The Professor and I are back in the teaching positions.  We homeschooled our own children, and it feels good and normal to be teaching our grandson.

2.  We've had some sunny. albeit cold, days, so you all know what that means.  Yes!  Walks!  Outside activities like walking and hiking are PE, right?  So our walks along the river are logged as PE time.

3.  I am thankful for quiet evenings, too.  We have just finished watching all the Inspector Morris episodes.  I appreciate being able to sit and knit and watch a captivating movie or show from the comfort of my own home.

4.  Sunday evening we had the opportunity to help prepare and serve meals at the local Salvation Army.  Older Daughter and New Boy were there helping, too.  I love that serving others is a gift that is being passed on through our generations.

5.  Dr. Mike, our younger son, had a birthday this week.  Although we can't celebrate with him in person, we called and talked to him and wished him a happy day.

Not every week is exciting.  But every week has blessings to discover!

Wednesday, January 20, 2021

It's a Good Wednesday Hodgepodge Morning

                                             From this Side of the Pond

Hodgepodge Wednesday is here!
Here are my answers to Joyce's questions.
You can join in by clicking on this LINK.

1. What's something we'd find you doing most afternoons? 

    Most afternoons right now, I am reading.  But once warmer weather arrives, I will be out in my garden or walking local trails.

2. Who do you take after? In what way(s)? 

    In coloring, I take after my very pale English/Irish ancestry father.  But I look like my mother even though she had black hair and olive complexion.  My love and talent for piano and voice came from my mother.  Love of gardening skipped my mom, but hit me hard, as both my grandmothers were gardeners.

3. 'After every storm comes a rainbow' or 'the calm before the storm'...which phrase do you relate to more right now? Tell us why? 

    This is a hard one for me because I relate to both.  There is the rainbow of our helping to school our grandson.  But then I think, "Hmmm, there will be smooth sailing for awhile, but when will the storm come?"  Actually, I don't think there will ever be much of a storm with him.  He seems very happy about the idea of learning with his Bapa.   

    Then there is the literal interpretation...we had snow storms last weekend.  Now it is clear and cold.  Is this respite from snow simply the calm before the next storm?  Since this is our first winter in this climate, it's all a learning experience.

4.What are your plans for the day after tomorrow? 

    Friday.  I will be spending most of the day with my grandson helping with his homeschooling.

5. Complete this sentence-"After all is said and done_____________________."

    God wins.

6. Insert your own random thought here. 

    I love sunny days for walking along the river.

Saturday, January 16, 2021

Five of the Best From This Week

 I'm a day late and probably more than a dollar short because I spent yesterday driving my Younger Daughter to a doctor appointment and to work and then returned later to pick her back up again  (fun times just chatting in the car).  But I have been thinking all week of my blessings and want to share them with you.  Here is Willow's Week in Friday Fave Fives.  (You know to follow the link to get to Susanne's blog.)

1.  When we drove in our driveway one evening, we noticed a box at our front porch.  We got mail!  The best kind of mail.  Older Son Chaplain Dan shipped us a box of his homemade limpa!  It's a traditional Swedish Christmas bread, and he has continued to keep up the tradition of making it.  Did I already say YUM?

2.  I am thankful for a warm home.  Just stepping into the garage to put recycle in the bin makes me feel frozen.  When I step back into the house, it's WARM.

3.  On Wednesday evening, we visited the home of new friends.  Older Daughter arranged for a meeting (more on that another day) to gather information we all needed.  We had a WONDERFUL WELCOME from this family and chatted for almost two hours, were served yummy chocolate cookies baked by their teenaged daughter, had a quick night time tour of their garden, and gained much info we needed.  The Professor was already acquainted with the husband, and that was an added benefit.  (And n,o we were not disobeying any health dept rules.  Yes, it is ok to visit people as long as we are observing social distancing.)

4.  Every day, I have been reading and collecting information on how to garden in my new climate.  I'm having fun and thankful for all the books and articles that are available for learning.  I am putting it all in a binder I have titled 

5.  I am thankful we had some sunny days this week.  That means we were able to walk the bike/hike path south of our daughter's home.  It also means beautiful sunsets.  

I have to admit that weather here is bi-polar.  Sunny one minute, stormy five minutes later.  

Even so, I love watching the weather.  It's all part of God's wonderful creation!

Wednesday, January 13, 2021

Wednesday Hodgepodge

                                    From this Side of the Pond

It's Wednesday Hodgepodge time.  Click on the picture and it will take you to Joyce's blog where you can team up with other people who are writing about this or you can just hop on and read what they have to say (after you read my post, of course).

1. When were you last a guest at an event or in someone's home? Tell us about it. Do you enjoy having guests in your own home? 
        The last time I was a guest at an event or in someone's home (not counting my family) was last summer when my friend hosted the women from our church small group for a luncheon in her avocado orchard.  It was also partly a good bye party for me.  Oh!  I just remembered another one!  In August, a few days before we moved away, everyone in our small group was invited to a front yard going away party for The Professor and me.  We sort of shared dinner and just laughed and chatted like we always do.
2. What has you 'tied up in knots' currently or recently? Are you any good at tying actual knots? 
        We are painting our daughter's downstairs bedrooms.  Why would that tie me up in knots?  I want to finish each room all in one day, but I have to be patient until the first coat of paint dries before we can start the second coat.
        I am much better at UNtying knots than tying them.  People know that if their yarn gets in a tangle, they can just hand it to me and I will untangle it for them.  Evidently, untangling yarn is one of my super strengths.

3. What's something you've been wanting to do and have decided 2021 will be the year you 'take the plunge'? 
        I am planting a GARDEN!  Vegetable, herbs, berry bushes and probably a couple of fruit trees!  I've been wanting a big yummy garden for years and our property in Southern California was just too small.  In fact, I have begun assembling a binder titled "My Ohio Garden".

4. Something in your home that's old? Something new? Something borrowed? Something blue? 
        Old?  My grandmother's cedar chest.
        New?  The whole house is new to me.
        Borrowed?  Do library books count?
        Blue?  The new cushions for the IKEA chair and ottoman our daughter passed on to us.  Other than that, well, there's a lot of blue in my house because I love blue.  For example, these vases and candleholders.

5. Share a favorite quote, a verse of scripture, and/or a bit of wisdom for couples getting married in this challenging and seemingly unpredictable season we're currently/still experiencing.
        Whenever people ask me one question about marriage, I always answer, "Make sure you laugh every day."

6. Insert your own random thought here. 
        Becoming Minimalist posted this on social media this morning.  Quote by Paige Kellerman.

   Not everyone realizes this,
but if you clean the pile of receipts out of a purse
and stack them together...

it makes a teeny tiny book
 about why you're broke.

Wise words.

Friday, January 08, 2021

Cold January Fave Fives

 Good morning!  Is it cold at your house?  It sure is here at Willow's cottage.  They say that cold hands mean a warm heart.  So I must have a very warm heart today.  And, truly, there is so much to be thankful for.  This is why I focus daily and weekly on my blessings and why I join FRIDAY FAVE FIVES every Friday.

1.  Blue sky!  It has been overcast and cloudy for a long week.  Today, it may be cold and windy, but it's SUNNY, and there is BLUE SKY!

2.  HAPPINESS showed up in my mailbox this week.  This was the sticker on the back of the package.

3.  It was Little Warrior's birthday last week.  He chose (as usual) to have an outing to the US Air Force Museum.   It is a true blessing to be able to celebrate with him this year! 

And ice cream cake!

4.  Older Daughter loves the Air Force Museum, too.  She gets to visit one of 'her' missiles. (Yes, she is a rocket scientist!)  I'm thankful for how much she loves her job.

5.  Friday mornings are special for me.  I get to zoom with my four art buddies.  Yes, they all live in my old home town, but we do zoom meetings for two reasons--we can stay isolated and safe from covid, and we can meet early in the morning in our jammies.  Oh and the third reason--I can join in from thousands of miles away.

What have been some blessings in your life this week?

Wednesday, January 06, 2021

Happy Hodgepodge

Good Wednesday morning!
Here we are just finishing the first week of January 2021.
Nothing new, huh?
Here is my Wednesday Hodgepodge.
Click the picture below to find more people.

1. What advice would you give yourself as we begin this new year? 

 Just last night, I read these words in my Bible from Job 28:28“The fear of the Lord—that is wisdom, and to shun evil is understanding.”   My first thought was, YES!  That is my verse for 2021.

2. If you could throw a themed party for yourself what would the theme be? 

I certainly liked Joyce's idea of a British tea (in England!).  I'm thinking that I will plan a lovely tea this spring, invite my two girls and grandkids, and serve it in our back garden.

3. Tell us where you were and something about what life was like when you were 20- 21.

At that age, I was in college in Southern California.  Reading and reading and writing papers.  I was also singing-- college trio, college choir, college small ensemble.  Always singing with my two best singing buddies (our trio).

4. What's on the menu at your house this week? 

Leftovers planned overs and more leftovers planned overs.

5. What should you do more of this year? Less of? 

There will be more and more gardening this year.  I have a 'blank space' in my new home to create a garden and I'm excited about that.  We also hope to be able to travel to new places.  

Less of?  Hopefully, less junk food.  I don't eat much of it but I've gotten a bit lax about my food choices.

6. Insert your own random thought here. 

I keep a yearly list of the books I have read.  I also keep a list of the knitting projects I have finished.  Does anyone else do this or something similar?

Friday, January 01, 2021

New Year's Faves 2021

 Welcome, 2021!

It's New Year's Day, and the first Friday Fave Five of 2021.  Christmas is over.  Stockings and presents were opened.

And now begins a new year.  There's not much different here at Willow's Cottage.  More snow and ice.  But that's OK.  We have a warm, dry house and we are very thankful for that!

Here are my Friday Fave Fives to share.

1.  Family dinners.  Since moving near my girls, we've starting this tradition of having a family dinner one night a week.  Some nights, we cook, but usually, it's just leftovers.  Less work for everyone.  I think these times with my girls will always be faves I am thankful for.

2.  New Year's Eve dinner with family.  OK, we are not partiers. We had dinner and finished watching White Christmas.  But before we turned on the DVD,  we toasted the New Year in with sparkling cider at SEVEN PM.  Why seven?

3.  Did you stay up to watch the ball drop?  We didn't want to stay up until midnight, so we found a you tube live video of Big Ben in London and watched Londoners celebrate the New Year.  Midnight in London is seven pm here.  That was good enough for us.

4.  In December, I posted #photoadaydecember on Facebook.  Mostly, I found older photos from my files that fit each day's idea.  Imagine my surprise that the picture for MATCHING has already gained almost 120 likes and loves.  This photo of The Professor and me, wearing our matching flannel shirts.

5.  A week isn't complete unless we've been out walking and hiking.  Family (and grand-dogs) have joined us on several outings.  Older Daughter has always been one for wandering.  And if there's a downed tree trunk anywhere near, she'll be climbing it!  You can take the girl out of the jungle, but you can't take the jungle out of the girl.


And she is training her son and nephew well!

 I am thankful for these times to make memories.