December 31, 2009, Blog entry
I have been missing in action for a spell. Had to open up Santa’s workshop, card making shop, and bakery. All are closed now and maybe I will have some time to do things on the computer again.
Never again do I want to even contemplate the number 8. Seems nearly everything I had to do ended up in making 8 of the critters, which I found boring after the first two. My daughter bought material for me to make her grandmother, my mom, some new placemats and napkins. I got the fabric and made them reversible. Made 8 of those and they were in solid colors. Then, the napkins were in a print to match each side and made 8 of them for each side. Still time left so I made 8 coasters that had an absorbent material inside each one. That was two sets of 8. On Christmas Eve I made myself go back to the machine and with the material that was left over, I made two hot pads for the table, one to match each napkin and coaster.
Another bright idea I had was to make the great-granddaughter a fleece blanket out of LSU material and a hat to match. Looked like an easy thing to make, but I had to cut out two of them, cut 7” from each corner, and then cut into the material every inch up 7”. The pattern said it was a “no sew” thing, but I believe it would have been easier to just sew around the thing. Once all of these “fingers” were cut, I had to take matching pieces from each of the two sides and tie them in a knot. Boring!!! I pulled a cap pattern off the net that was adorable and made the hat. Well, when it was finished, it would only have fit a tennis ball or maybe even a golf ball. Back to the city for more fleece and this time I just cut what I imagined was a hat that would fit her head. I sewed a deep cuff to they could pull it down over her ears in the cold weather. I won’t be guilty of another “no sew” anything.
I always give a check to the kids, my parents, and the grandchildren so they can either get what they want or put my money with some other they may get to purchase something they wanted and didn’t get. Instead of that impersonal check, I decided to make scrapbook paper covered cardboard wallets. I cut a notch in each side, folded the bills, and tied them into the center of the wallet. I used Velcro to secure the part that folds over onto the top and then put a sparkly sticker on the front. I had to make 11 of those. Everyone seemed to like them although the Velcro did tear loose from the paper since I didn’t tell them to carefully open the wallets. For the two younger grands I made money trees. I accordion folded 80 one dollar bills and stuck them into a Styrofoam cone with florist’s pins and stuck a glittered pick in the top. It looked so sparse that I started to go to the bank and get more money, but then I would have had to increase everyone’s money so it would come out fair. I told Bill that I couldn’t cut the top out of the cone because it would look stupid. He suggested cutting some of the bottom of the cone. Duh!!! Why didn’t I think of that? They ended up being way too cute. I bought some picks with red glittered berries and silk leaves on them and tore them all apart and stuck each berry all around the tree. Their mother said, “Oh, you can’t take the money out of the tree. We need to save them to put out as decorations next year.” Again, Bill suggested she give them what money was on the tree and that way she can keep them and they will still get their money.
Another 8 that I made, and won’t do ever again, is take a Mason jar and make it into a button jar/mending kit for each family. I found little mending kits with threads, needles, tiny scissors, a few buttons and thimble at the dollar store and put that inside each jar. Then I had to cut some large circles out of fabric and some smaller ones. Hand gathering material takes way too long, but there wasn’t any other way I could think to do that. Each jar lid had to be stuffed with fiberfill and sewn tightly to the lid. Next, I used fabric glue and attached fabric to cardboard circles, then stuck those to the round, puffy, pincushion top. They turned out very cute, but 8 were just a bit too many to make. Oh, I stuck pins in the top of the pincushion as well.
For Zoey I wanted these little bell bracelets children in Thailand wear on their ankles and you can find them when they walk out of a room, when they are toddling. The best price I could find on the net was $45 and shipping and I just wouldn’t pay that. I decided I could make her some out of jingle bells and cording. Easy to do, but then to make them adjustable I needed to tie square knots. I have tied probably 5 million of them in my lifetime back when macramé was the thing. I had a hard time doing it. I could sit on the back porch and visualize how to do it and then come inside and would mess up. I made three of them and if her mom likes them, then I have the stuff to make her some more colors of them. She has taken 11 steps alone now and it won’t be long before she will be everywhere and I am sure into everything.
Next, I thought it would be nice to make candy and cookies to share with the neighbors. It started out with me deciding to make my son some white chocolate covered pretzels, which is something he loves. From there I went to fudge, Martha Washington’s, cow patties, a carrot cake, and White Christmas meringues. No, I didn’t make just one batch of each. I made two of each. I have shared with the neighbors and took a lot to my parents, but there is still some left and for some reason or other, when I walk past the table, this magnetic force makes my hand shoot into a container and come out with chocolate calories. I ran out of time and energy before I made the cookies I wanted, but had I made them first, nothing else would have gotten made. I will make my Cosi Ducci cookies when all of this other stuff is gone.
We opened gifts with my daughter’s family on Christmas Eve this year since all of us went on Christmas down to Alexandria to my parent’s home for Christmas day. My dad is almost 90 and mama is 84 and who knows how many more Christmases we will have with them. Two of my brothers with their children and grandchildren were there, one brother dropped in later after spending Christmas with his wife’s people, a SIL’s mother was there, my daughter and her husband, my parents, and Bill and I. It was a very enjoyable day, but I was happy to get home to my quiet house.
On Monday we drove to Conway, Arkansas, to have Christmas with my son and his family. His oldest son and his wife stopped by early on Christmas Eve to exchange gifts as he was called back to work. We had a really nice time with our son’s family and of course enjoyed the grandchildren, who we don’t get to see regularly now that they have moved. Instead of going on the 6 lane through Little Rock, we took a longer scenic route through the mountains which added probably a bit over an hour to the trip, but I would have had a panic or anxiety attack had I had to drive on that crazy freeway. Nice sunny trip up there, but misted on us on the way home. Just thankful it was pouring down rain.
Our friends we usually spend New Year’s Eve have gone to Mississippi to see grandchildren, Melyssa is tied up tonight, and our other friends have gone to the casino for the night. Guess we will ring in the New Year just us two.
I am sure health wise this next year will be better for me as unless it is an emergency, I won’t have to have any surgeries. My doctor wants to do my shoulders, but I told him after this last knee surgery with the infection afterwards, wild horses couldn’t drag me into a hospital unless it was life or death. No way. Nada. No!!!
They say what you are doing on New Year’s Eve you will be doing all year long. Well, I just sat here and paid all of my bills that have come in and I hope the new year brings something a bit more interesting than that. J Wishing all of you the best in 2010. Please pray for those in need, who are ill, and for our soldiers who are keeping this country free.
Happy New Year, 2010!!!!