Saturday, December 19, 2009

White Christmas!

Who ever expected two feet of snow in Virginia? With temperatures in the thirties all week and the twenties at night, this is going to be here for a while. No sign of a snow plow today.

This is the chair on my back deck. This picture was made early in the day and it has snowed many inches since then!

The birds have flocked to the feeder. I threw some seed on top of the snow so more could eat at the same time. With the squirrels napping I was able to put the suet out and the woodpeckers were grateful. Isn't this bird cute all fluffed out?

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Cookie Bags

My daughter asked me to make some gift bags for her cookies to her friends. Of course I said yes. These are 8 1/2 inches wide by 10 inches tall. The plastic bag full of cookies can be slipped inside and the drawstring pulled. It makes a nice presentation.

I am mailing five bags to her!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Special Tree

Isn't this tree fantastic? It is across the street from my house, near the creek. This is a good time of year to look at trees - to see their "bones" so to speak.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

A Relaxing Snowy Day

I did get up and go to work this morning. The rain was changing to snow and by the time I arrived in Orange, everything had turned white and the snow was really coming down. We decided there would not be enough business for me to be needed at Sherri's Shop. After a quick stop at the grocery store where the milk shelves were nearly empty, I headed home. In Virginia we always stock up on bread and milk when it snows even an inch!

At home, hubby, the cats and I settled in for a cozy day. Here is Big Guy doing his share!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Back after a break.

Well, I have taken a little break from blogging. I had not intended to but I had craft projects to finish before I put away the mountain of craft supplies that I had strewn around the house. Then the house had to be cleaned and baking done. It was a wonderful holiday with three of my four children home, one with a wife of one year and one with a girlfriend.

I was saddened to learn that Cliff, the husband of Joanie, (My Blue Mountian Home) passed away.

Does anyone know what happened to Jane of The Thrifty Countryrwoman? Her blog is not online and I miss her.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Fun at Home

This used to be my dining room table and will be again. I have so many projects going all at the same time that the work table in my craft room is full. Besides, it is cold down there, whereas upstairs I can cuddle up to the fire. In my defense, my craft work table is pretty full with a computer, scanner and printer. But I'm certain that I could fill any number of tables!

(My family shouldn't look at these photos! There are secrets here.) I am busy making Christmas presents and having a great time. Hubby agreed to take over the kitchen for a few days - well, actually two - but I'm hoping to stretch that by a few days. I helped him tie on his apron (he can't tie behind his back!) and he took the cookbook I created for the family last Christmas and cooked Porcupine Balls which just happen to be his favorite! Then he whipped up an apple crisp. A very successful supper. And I just kept on sewing!

You can see the makings for several projects on the table - potholders made in the string piecing method, wax for a leaf wreath (directions at Color Outside the Lines), a clay figure in the foreground, and a package of transfer paper.

Here is the close up of the potholders. Two finished and several more to go. I was lucky to have five red fabrics that went so well together. I used this to explain to hubby why I need to have such a large selection of fabric!

Isn't it nice to be surrounded by those you love on a cold November day? Hubby didn't want me to post his picture so filling in for him is "Paws."

You know how people are posting pictures of a cup of tea in a fancy cup with the fire in the background? Here is my version of that. My favorite mug with three yellow kitties like mine. Doesn't the one on the right look like "Big Guy"? See his picture in the right side bar and in the center of the mosaic below. It is the same bewildered look.

Another fun day! I think hubby is making macaroni and cheese tonight. He will need a little advice on that. What are you doing this gray November day?

Monday, November 9, 2009

Mosaic Monday

This is Mosaic Monday sponsored by Little Red House. If you are new to making photo mosaics, click on the photo tutorial button and follow Mary's instructions. I warn you, there is a learning curve. I am not happy with my mosaic and one is not given the opportunity to change the arrangement of the pictures. I did learn that the first picture in the set (on Flickr) will be the center photo.

These are photos I took this fall in Virginia and Connecticut. The cat in the center is "Big Guy" who is lying at my feet as I type.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

PK's Jewelry Giveaway

PK at Room Remix is giving away a $ 75 dollar gift certificate to Stella and Dot. It is gorgeous jewelry and you will find something you love! Just follow the directions to sign up. The contest ends on Sunday. How about this lovely pearl necklace?

Friday, November 6, 2009

Black & White Photo

This is my cat named, "Big Guy." As I left to do errands I glanced back and saw him lying in the leaves. He looked so cute I snapped his picture.

Look at the black and white photos at Maya's blog, Springtree Road.

Fall Leaves Mosaic

Everyone has been posting beautiful mosaics and I have been so envious. Apparently my Photoshop Elements does not have an application for creating these. If I am wrong, and one of you knows how to create a mosaic in Elements, please let me know. After much searching, I found a free program on the internet called "Shape Collage." It was not easy to use and needs more study. If you know of an easy way to do this on a Mac, PLEASE let me know!!

These photos were all taken in my yard and two were actually snapped from my porch!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Lane in the woods

This is the lane that leads to my house. Hard to tell there is a road there, isn't it? This is where I start my walks. Often a group of four deer leap across in front of me. It is a doe and her triplets, two boys and a girl.

Enjoy Outdoor Wednesday at A Southern Daydreamer.
Check out Dipity Road. Her photos are breathtaking!

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween!

Don't be afraid! It is only my cat "Paws" who is actually soft, sweet and orange - not scary at all.

Trick or Treat!

"And ghost stories are the very best stories of all. The tale-teller speaks in a hushed voice that inspires shivers and shakes and half-frightened silences, whilst the conjured spirits lurk, listening, in the dark corners of the room. At last, the fire burns down, the cider is drunk up, and the storyteller and the audience creep off to bed, where they hurriedly say their prayers and pull the covers over their heads very fast, before the fairies or ghosts or trolls can come out of their corners and carry them off. "
From "The Tale of Applebeck Orchard" by Susan Wittig Albert

Doesn't everyone like a ghost story at Halloween, especially when it is told in the dark? There was no chance for the children to be frightened of Halloween Ghosties today because they Trick or Treated in daylight. Fifteen hundred children, plus parents, were expected on Main Street in Orange to fill their goodie bags.

Here are some of the costumed Trick or Treaters.

This pooch was dressed up but wanted to get so close to the camera that his outfit didn't show!

This squirrel needed a little help with "tail management."

And a good time was had by all!

Happy Halloween!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Why did the Box Turtle cross the road?

Every summer B and I stop the car and remove turtles from the road. We save about twelve a year. They move so slowly that many of them get hit. Why can't people be careful and avoid them? Usually I move the turtle off the road in the direction he/she was going. When I approach the turtle he usually pulls his head in and closes up. Not this one! He put on a burst of speed and crossed the road by himself! You can see that he is actually blurred in the picture. I was lucky to have my camera with me.

Actually I think it is a she because of the height of the shell. Boys have a high dome shaped shell.
After she moved into the woods, she closed her shell and dismissed me.

Here is some information from a web site about Box Turtles.

"Box Turtles are some of the longest lived and slowest reproducing species in the world. Although still fairly common over much of their range, their future is uncertain. Box turtles are slow growing, have few young, and have exhibited delayed sexual maturity. These qualities make them particularly susceptible to damage due to human activities.

"Box turtles may also wander out of their isolated habitats into the matrix (the land used by humans), where they are particularly susceptible to accidental death due to humans. Each year countless box turtles are hit by cars or trains when they attempt to cross roads or railroads. Others are accidentally killed by lawn mowers, tractors, and farm equipment.

"Another concern is the capture of box turtles for the pet trade. The impact of taking turtles from the wild can be devastating to local populations. Over the span of their lifetime, female turtles will lay hundreds of eggs, but only 2-3 of these offspring will survive to adulthood. These offspring will eventually replace their elderly parents, allowing the population to remain at a stable size. But, if box turtles are taken from the wild to become pets, or are killed by human activities, they are removed from the overall breeding population, the number of offspring drops, and the overall population declines.

Additionally, box turtles have a homing instinct that causes them to try to return to the place of their birth if they are moved. As a result, when box turtles that have been taken as pets are returned to the wild, they will head straight for their natal grounds. This journey causes the turtles to encounter many dangers, such as roads, predators, and humans. For these reasons, if you are looking for a pet, you should try to find a captive-bred animal or consider a different pet."

If you see a turtle in the road, please help him/her get to the other side. But if it is a huge snapping turtle, "assist" it with a long stick or shovel.