Happy Homemaker Monday

I’m trying something for the first time and joining Sandra at Diary of a Stay at Home Mom for Happy Homemaker Monday.

The weather…..
31 degrees and mostly cloudy and foggy with rain to follow.

Right now I am….

Watching the news while I start this post. The big news that is trending is the shocking win by the Seahawks yesterday in Minnesota. Ouch. And the other worldwide trending news that David Bowie lost his battle to cancer at 69 years old.

Thinking….

About the three birthdays we have this week in our family. Two of the birthdays will be celebrated without us in northeastern Washington state and one will be celebrated on this side of the mountains at this old house on Friday night. Gifts have been sent, cards will be sent and meal will be planned. Birthdays belong to #1 son, #2 son, and # 2 daughter in law.

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Our kids minus our son-in-law Andrew. Katie, Josh our oldest with a birthday this month. Top row is Laura our DIL who is married to Josh. Our son Daniel who celebrates his birthday and our new DIL Jamie who celebrates her birthday this month, too.  Katie and Laura had birthdays in December.

On my reading pile….

The Songs of Jesus by Timothy Keller and A travel Guide on San Francisco for an upcoming business trip that I’m tagging along on. I need to choose a good read for our plane travel and my hotel stay later in the month.

On my TV…..

The shows I’m watching this month are Biggest Loser, Top Chef, Masterchef Junior, Fixer Upper, and Downton Abbey. On Netflix we have been watching a British series based in Scotland called Monarch of the Glen aired in the early 2000’s. Our daughter and son in law have the Netflix account and since they are living with us right now we use it, too. We DVR most shows and watch them earlier in the evening since Dear and I hit the sack real early. I also enjoy watching Barclays Premier League Soccer games early on Saturday mornings.

Favorite blog post last week (mine or other)….

My posts titled Still Praying and Z is for… were my favorites from last week.

Something fun to share….

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This is the Amiable Guinea Pig from my collection of Beatrix Potter figurines that I started acquiring on a trip to England back in 1973. Beatrix Potter is a favorite of mine and her animal characters make me smile so I thought this would be fun to share.

There once was an amiable guinea pig,
He brushed back his hair like a periwig-
He wore a sweet tie,
As blue as the sky-
And his whiskers and buttons were very big.

Blog hopping (newly discovered blog)….

Diary of a Stay at Home Mom is a newly discovered blog. This being the new year and because some of my oldie blogs are biting the dust I need to peruse and make some changes to my blogroll.

On the menu for this week….

Don’t judge but I don’t usually have a daily plan for meals and I’m more of a fly by the seat of my pants cook on most days. I do know that every Tuesday is Tequila Tuesday when Dear and I go to our little Mexican joint for a meal together. Our favorite waitress serves us well.

Generally we have soup on a given night, a good hunk of meat on a given night, and a pasta something dish, a Mexican easy meal, and I’ll throw in some kind of Chicken dish.

Friday this week will be a special meal to celebrate our firstborn son. There will be 6 of us at the table and I’m going with a couple traditional Russian dishes. We will enjoy Lopsha (Russian Noodle Soup) for our starter soup. For the main course I’m making Golubtsi (stuffed cabbage rolls). I’ll throw in something green, too. Chocolate Birthday Cake for dessert.

On my to do list….

I’m a list keeper and I love crossing things off of it.  So far today I was able to cross off brush my teeth, just kidding, but I am amazed that I finally ironed and put the fresh linens on the guest bed. Note to self…never buy bedding again that needs ironing.

In the craft basket….

Not a craft person… I do like to be creative in setting a table so I am gathering things to set the birthday table for Friday night.

Looking forward to this week…

The birthday celebration and hearing that our northeast kids got their gifts in the mail.

Looking around the house….

thinking about getting rid of some of the clutter that has piled up here and there after the holidays.

From the camera….

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This little plaque is a gift from Marg, my friend from Mennonite Girls Can Cook. Translated from German to English it says God Can! It’s a motto we use with each other when things seem hard or impossible.

On my prayer list…..

See my favorite post link for a couple specific things on my prayer list. For each month I like to use a notebook page to list all the birthdays and anniversaries in the month and I’ll say a little prayer for each person or couple that is celebrating in that given month. I have my list of people who still need Jesus. I have my praise column. I have my illness and healing columns and there are enough of those that I have them under headings like Cancer, Leukemia, Heart, Emotional, Mental, Chronic Pain. I also pray for some children of broken homes.  I have a widow and widower list and a single but would like to be married list. I also have a they need a job list. Now I don’t want to give you the impression that I sit in a comfy chair and pray for hours. I don’t. I like to use this page method so I don’t forget and so I have a guide and list to pray through.

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Bible verse, Devotional….

My verse on my Prayer page this month is Psalm 4:1

Answer me when I call, O God of my righteousness!
You have given me relief when I was in distress.
Be gracious to me and hear my prayer!

Thank you Sandra for hosting this weekly meme. I better publish it before Monday is gone. It took me a big longer than I thought to crank this out. With all the talk of homemaking I felt compelled to take a break to iron those blasted linens and it took a very long time. I hope to get around to others who are participating sometime today or tomorrow!

Blessings on your Monday!

Full of Thoughts…

In my college years which happened to be the late 60’s and early 70’s I bought this album to keep me organized in my thoughtfulness. Appropriately the album is called…

P1040773These sweet illustrations called to me back then. Remember Holly Hobbie?

morning trail5Each month has a page with a pocket and each day of the month is in a list form for you to add birthdays, anniversaries and other events.

P1040775I cherish this old album that is worn with age and use.

It’s time for me to go through that drawer in my desk…you know the one, where you throw everything in for future organization. I have wedding invitations and birth announcements and funeral leaflets to put into the appropriate month of the year pocket. These monthly pockets are wonderful now all these years later because so much has happened and I forget more and more about when these events took place. Each month I can flip the page and not only see who’s birthday and anniversary fall in that month but what year the event took place. Everything all in one book.

How do you keep organized when it comes to birthdays and anniversaries?

Lots to be Thankful For…

So many blessings to think about and be thankful for. Today I’m joining Susanne at Living to Tell the Story with Friday’s Fave Five . My Favorites for this week will revolve around Katie’s trip to Southern California. For those of you who don’t visit very often our daughter Katie has been living with us since September while our Son-in-Law, Andrew is serving with the Marine Corp in Afghanistan. She will be with us until his return sometime in the Spring. When we get a more definitive return date she and I will drive their car and some belongings across country from Washington to North Carolina and try to set up some type of living arrangement before his arrival. Now I’m ready with the Five…

1. That Katie could spend some time with my dear old pop while she was in Southern California. The photo above is of the two of them from last year at the senior apartment building where he lives.

Disney winter

2. That Katie was able to spend 2 fun packed days at Disneyland with some of her cousins. The goal was to see Disneyland while it was still all decorated for Christmas. Katie’s cousins have Disney year long passes and Katie was able to get a great 3 day pass for a good military discount.

3. I was talking to my pop this morning and he was telling me that he thanks God every day for his children, his grandchildren and his great grandchildren. It is so pleasing to see how well this group of cousins gets along and how much they love each other. The above photo was taken in Southern California in March of 2013.

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4. From December 3rd thru January 19th we celebrate the birthdays of four of our children. I’m so thankful for each one of them and how unique they are. I’m also very thankful that they love each other and can talk to each other and laugh at each other! Tonight we will be celebrating Josh about 9 days early but he’ll be gone next weekend serving at Junior High Winter camp so like always we go with the flow and celebrate whenever we can.

P1040734This photo is from Laura’s birthday celebration early in December…

Andrew training

5. We are thankful for our son-in-law, Andrew. He is serving all of us in harms way. I like to post this photograph every so often to remind anyone who visits here that many of our young men and women are away from the comforts of home serving our country and to remind us to pray for them that they will return home safe and sound. Semper Fi!

What are you thankful for today?

Remembering…

We are taking time to remember the fallen and to also remember our Veterans and those serving our country right now. This is a photo of Dear’s father who served during WWII. This is Rex and Verna’s wedding photo. Dear’s father passed away in 1985. Dear’s mother passed away in 1997. Verna’s father and brothers served in WWII also.

I’m going to start with today and then backtrack to yesterday to share our weekend events so far. Today after church we had a couple over who have a son serving in Afghanistan right now in the Army. We talked about his service now in Afghanistan and his past service in Iraq.

We had this dish I used to make years ago and was happy to revive. I’ll be posting it on MGCC in the near future.

Our lives with this couple have intersected in different ways over the years. The wife we knew first years ago. Her new husband we just met a few months ago. He and his first wife were our daughter’s camp leaders for a special training of young leaders in the late 90’s. His wife died and over the course of time our friend from years ago ended up marrying this man. Are you tracking here? Anyway it has been nice to catch up with them as a new couple and enjoy talking about the intersection of our lives.

Both of our “boys” have been in Afghanistan and we pray for the safety of the one there now and for our son in laws future deployment.

Too bad I didn’t have an army flag to add to our centerpiece.

On Saturday we got lots done around this old house. We cleared out and organized in our basement which included shredding a lot of old papers we do not need to save anymore. Dear cleaned out and rearranged a few vehicles in his shop and he’s happy with the results so far. We planted 3 large bushes. There were a few neighborhood garage sales going on so we took advantage of the constant traffic by putting out some items we wanted to get rid of with a FREE sign on them. Boy did that stuff disappear fast! We barbecued hamburgers and corn on the cob for a late afternoon meal with Josh and Laura. We also had barbecued beans and watermelon. A nice time of catching up.

The weather on Saturday was nice enough for us to be able to eat outside so this table setting was put on hold for our Sunday company.

I had to share this photo that I blatantly nabbed off my niece from facebook. This is my dad and oldest sister Kathy. They are celebrating their May birthdays today together at a family favorite restaurant in Montebello called Golden Skewers. Yum! My dad’s birthday was the 25th and my sister’s birthday was the 23rd. Wish I could have been there with them but I’m happy to have this photo I could steal to see their celebration! They both look fabulous for their perspective ages! My dad is now officially 90!

What a nice feeling to know we still have one full day left with nothing on the schedule. Wonder what projects we’ll come up with for the observed Memorial Day on Monday the 27th? What have you been up to?

Sunlit Sunday?

The fog has blocked out the sun in our part of the world for several days now so I decided to go to my photos from a year ago to show some sunlit offerings! We have also had a good stretch of days that start in the 20’s and just inch their way up, trying to reach the 40’s.

It’s hard to believe that just a year ago our daughter Katie and I were at a wedding show at the Seattle Center. Her and Andrew’s wedding ceremony was in March of last year. I decided to pick this photo for Sunlit Sunday because she just called yesterday letting us know she will be arriving in Seattle for a month long stay while our son-in-law Andrew has some cold weather training in Northern California. They currently live at Camp Lejeune Marine Base in North Carolina. There is always a bedroom ready for visits from our kids!

To cheer myself up and to remind myself that the sun is shining but I just can’t see it’s glory right now I searched for more January shots of sunshine from last year…

Not real bright but the sun is breaking through. These are floating houses on North Lake Union in Seattle. If you look closely you can see the Space Needle in the background.

A lovely shaft of sunshine lighting up my bouquet of tulips from January of last year, too.

Hope the sun is lighting up your part of the world today!

I’m joining My Little Home and Garden for her Sunlit Sunday Meme.

Yesterday was our firstborn’s birthday so we’ll be enjoying a meal together for him and our dear daughter in love this evening. We love to celebrate our family. Speaking of celebrating, it  looks like my blog will be having a big celebration real soon as my total blog visits are inching to 1,000,000 viewers!! I never imagined when I started blogging in March of 2007 that my blog would be visited by so many. I’m working on a giveaway for this landmark event to be announced this week!

The Five…

Today is Friday and I’m joining Susanne at Living to Tell the Story for her Friday’s Fave Five. It’s good to think back over the past week and see the good things in life that God has blessed you with to enjoy.

1. Vareniki have become traditional for my family to prepare together before Christmas and then to serve on Christmas Eve for dessert. My mom’s version are larger and fancier than these but when I don’t get my mom’s these are the next best thing. I can buy them at a European Deli not too far form my home. They call them perogies but the Russian on the upper left translates to Vareniki with cheese. After they are formed, filled with cheese and sealed they are boiled cooled and frozen. We like to serve them hot out of the oven after they are cooked from their frozen state with butter and 1/2 and 1/2. Then we plop some sour cream on top and cover them with good maple syrup. Delicious! We had these for breakfast last Saturday before we started in on cleaning out the garage loft.

2. When we crave a good meatball sandwich we drive to a pizza joint in Lynnwood. We’ve tried to find a good one closer to us but they always disappoint. These were delicious as usual. I brought half of mine home for another day. All my favorites aren’t about food but it seems the freezing snap we’ve had since last Friday made us seek out some of our favorite comfort foods.

3. Our favorite sons both have birthdays this week. We are so thankful that God blessed us with them. Each one is unique and appreciated!

4. I’m thankful for the local library where I can put books on hold and then check out to enjoy without spending lots of money. The book in the middle is co-authored by our friend Lela Gilbert. Lela has a new book out that I’ve ordered from Amazon called, Saturday People, Sunday People. I’ll share more about it after it arrives. Without Reservations was recommended to me by Susan in Switzerland after she read about our upcoming trip to Milan. The Unofficial Downton Abbey cookbook is just for fun.

5. We are excited about finally sending our chairs out to be reupholstered. They were in sorry shape after 36 years or so of wear and tear. We are looking forward to their new look and feel.

In the meantime the table is very lonely.

Looking forward to coming around and seeing your favorites this week. What’s in store for your weekend? Some of us in the U.S. get a long weekend since Monday is Martin Luther King, Jr. observance. Dear’s company doesn’t give him the day off. We hope to celebrate with Josh and Laura on Sunday if they are well enough. (Lousy illnesses gripping our world!) We also are plowing forward to try to  finish the clean up in the garage. Blessings!!

Encouraging Words…

For Vee’s January Notecard Party I decided to go with a theme and find illustrated verses that I’ve posted in the past.

It’s been a while since I’ve put together photos with verses from the Bible. I hope to do some new ones soon.

Thank you Vee, for hosting this meme!

I’m adding this photo of our 2 sons to say Happy Birthday to them. Today is Dan’s birthday and Saturday is Joshua’s birthday. They are sons that make us proud to be their parents. May God continue to bless their lives on this earth!

Your dad and I love the two of you and we are so grateful for your love and care for each other, too!