We are just about to wrap up 2013 as the end of December is days away. I have been negligent on blogging, but I have been pretty decent on journaling so I am going through and pulling out some highlights. Enjoy!! Hopefully 2014 will find me blogging more regularly instead of in digest! The funnest thing about this month… SNOW! 😀
Sunday, December 1 –
It’s the 6th night of Hannukah. Hooray! We haven’t really been eating Latkes or anything though. We’ve been busy and cold. Our oil heater came up empty on Thursday and we have been working hard to keep warm all weekend. Jason was home so he toted wood up and kept the fire going and going and going. On Friday I had an idea to hang a blanket on the entry ways into the living room so that we could contain the heat from the fireplace. I didn’t act on my idea though until Saturday in the middle of the day. I came downstairs prepared with long johns, etc. I was still cold though even with the fire going. So after we ate lunch, turkey casserole from Thanksgiving, I went upstairs and collected two blankets. I brought them downstairs and Jason helped me hang them. Soon the effectiveness of my idea was rewarded by the shedding of clothes layers in the now, warm and toasty, living room. Hooray! We stayed snuggie warm here in the living room all day long. Jason was sweet to go out and tend to the animals and we just kept the fire going all day. We have two radiator heaters in the bedrooms and that is how we were able to tolerate the bedrooms. They are quite effective, although Jason says that the cost to run them is higher than he would like. My daughter forgot to turn her heater on and when she got to her room it was still chilly. It warmed up in about 20 minutes. While it warmed she snuggled under her pile of blankets. So Jason worked hard and got the heat a blazin’ in here. Our little thermostat says 85 degrees. I persuaded Jason to open up the blanket cover nearest the basement door so we can cool off some, haha! I am happy to have all this warmth, ahhhh.
On Sunday we had two things planned. From 1-5pm I had to run a booth at The Golden Greek restaurant in Southbridge and also needed to go to a 4H meeting as a guest to see if it is what we wanted to do. The roads were horrendous in the morning and there was a 65-car pile-up in Worcester so Jason was skeptical about going anywhere. When I loaded up the truck to head out at about 11:50 (the Greek Restaurant is only a couple of minutes away) it was simply wet out with no ice really. So I told Jason that if they could, I would like them to go check out the 4H club. So he said, “maybe.” I headed out to the restaurant and set up my booth. I anticipated there being numerous vendors there but in fact there was only myself and this one other lady from a company called “Sadie Green.” They had a bunch of jewelry, scarves and blankets. There was one small table and I needed an outlet to plug in my diffuser so I picked a corner booth. It was the “best” location. I set up my spot and I meant to take a picture of the finished product to share with my fellow Young Living associates, but I totally forgot. I had a few visitors to my booth and I surprised myself when I found I actually had a lot to talk about concerning oils, health and herbs. I did not think I would have enough info, but was happy to hear myself spewing knowledge. I had a few people fill out the Health questionnaire. I left the Greek Restaurant at 4:30. I surprised myself with efficiency as I was able to make only two trips to the truck, loaded up, and went home. I knew I would beat Jason and my daughter home and knew I had 4 stalls to muck out and dinner to get to. What I didn’t know was that the sink was overflowing with dishes too.
When I got home I unloaded the truck, ran upstairs and changed, and then ran downstairs to feed the bellowin’ puppies and ran out to the barn to feed the horses and muck out stalls. In my mind I have them divided into sections. Set “A” and Set “B” Each set is two stalls, one of Justice and one for Sky. Set “A” stalls were in the worst shape. I was hard pressed to get them sufficiently clean. Then I mucked out Set “B” stalls and they were almost pleasant by comparison. The shavings were mostly clean and quite fluffy. In the middle of Set “A” Jason and my daughter showed up. My daughter went to make dinner and after Jason changed he came and helped me in time to start the final stall, Justice’s stall. Justice is a horrible housekeeper. His stalls are always a huge mess, but I was impressed to find that his stall was not at all bad this time. Phew! Jason and I knocked it out together in just a few minutes all the while we discussed the day’s events, mainly the 4H meeting and the Fair.
Friday, December 6 – A Kitty Incident
Just now I had to stop mid-sentence because I heard some banging around on some pipes coming from the basement. I did a quick head count and realized that a certain spotty kitty was missing. I went down to the basement and called for her but it was silent, like deafly silent like someone was holding their breath. Rolf had heard the noise too so he nosily followed me down to the basement to see what was going on. In the past his little hound like properties have proven invaluable for helping to foil the plots of spotty kitties so I took him with me and turned him loose in the area that Namira usually vanishes. The basement ceiling is unfinished and has lots of nooks and crevices that little sleuthy kitties like to hide in. Well Rolf couldn’t pick up a scent or pick up any clues so I called Namira. She continued to hold her breath and lay very still. So I went up to call her girl, Alayna. She really loves Alayna and it is difficult for her to keep her silence for her love of this girl. So Alayna went down and walked stealthily and listened. Namira’s bell hit the vent where she was hiding and revealed her hiding place to her girl. Alayna pulled her off the vent. Bringing her upstairs revealed two things. Rolf was being mean and chasing Namira around and being mean, and the second thing is that Namira had a dooty booty. So Alayna scrubbed her bottom up and took Namira to the top of the stairs and Rolf scampered up with them. When Alayna put Namira on the ground Rolf whacked her on the head. Alayna ran down and rescued poor Namira. Rolf followed and then jumped on the kitty condo and triumphantly “roared” which really sounds like this…. Brrriiioooowww, Briiiiooowwww! It sounds funny and cute, but I’m sure to himself he sounds like a mighty lion roaring. Little stinker! Alayna brought him to me and gave him a wadded paper ball and he began to shred it. I took it away and he has now scampered off again. Oy!
Monday, December 9 –
We woke up to snow this morning. It was a thin layer, the news said an inch but it didn’t look like it. As soon as we got out of bed and moving the sky opened up and it began to pour. It rained buckets in a short period of time. By the time I got dressed and headed out the door to feed the horses the ground was like a big slushy. I slushed my way to the barn in my muck boots. The horses were happy to see me and Justice was smacking his lips in anticipation of eating. This whole… not having food in front of me 24/7 is a difficult thing for him. I went and dropped hay for him and Sky and set about getting their grain together. I gave Natsar his breakfast. He was happy to see me and as usual wanted me to release him from his tie out. I did not at this time because I did not plan to be out long and I didn’t want to have to go and wrangle him back into the barn once I was done. So I soaked the beet pulp for the PM feeding and got the grain together. I hung the buckets on the hooks and patted Natsar on the head and headed promptly back to the house to take the dogs up to the living room and grab my HOT coffee.
Saturday, December 10 – Snowball Fight!! Episode 1 of ??
The unsuspecting victim walked up the path to the house. Tired from chores and stiff from the cold. Her love appeared above on the deck asking if she would like coffee. “Yes,” she replied. Just then a snowball materialized in her loves hand. The victim, carrying a bowl had no hands free and a sudden move to snatch up a wad of snow and quickly form into a spherical object was not an option. She reacted quickly as the spherical projectile sailed quickly through the air and “TINK” she caught the snowball with the bowl she carried and without thought returned it to it’s sender. Her love was not expecting a “Spanish Inquisition!” Haha! Don’t mess with the girl, LOL!
Monday, December 12 –
I am back in the house at 1:09PM. It seems like I have done a LOT of nothing.
I’m trying to stay focused but I feel like I’m a blur, running in 10 different directions. I’m taking a moment to put my thoughts down before I continue on to what I was TRYING to do previously… which is catch up on my blog posts for November and start December. It seems that ever since I read this blog from this lady saying some mean things about people that blog random things (which is what I feel I do) I have lost my gusto in keeping up with my blog posts. I have had to decide to let it go and shrug off her so-called “words of advice.” What does she know anyway? I have a following and I am reaching my targeted audience… people who care about me and my family and who are wanting to know what is going on in our lives up here in New England. My premise is a “displaced Texas girl used to the HOT climate and Southern charm who now finds herself in this strange and not-so-foreign frigid land. She is now finding that this place is quite pleasing and way less “blue” in both political and temperature ways. She is finding that it is a Red state here on ground level with the people. Conservative, grass-root America is alive and well in this part of the NE contrary to what the media would have us all believe.” So, with that inspirational piece I need to get back to what matters AFTER I say the boring stuff I’ve done today! 😉
Boring things I have done today: Woke up and did chores, locked myself out with all my 5 dogs and believe I did not have my phone on me which after throwing sticks at my daughter’s window to wake her up because my plan to let her sleep in was no longer relevant because I was now locked out. I found her stick stash and a lone pine cone and used them to wake her up by tossing them gently but loudly enough for her to hear, against her bedroom windows after banging on all the doors did not work. I was not freezing cause I was quite bundled up but now that I am inside I began my somewhat normal routine. I sat under my laptop on the couch and drank coffee. I started blogging, stopped blogging, started blogging again, surfed Facebook, posted to both of my Facebook pages, answered emails, started blogging again, stopped blogging. I got up and took my Hcg drops then sat back down and picked up on not blogging. I was trying to decide how I should post all the things that happened in November that I had not blogged about. Finally I figured out the best thing… I pulled out and sorted all the pictures I had taken during the month of November in order to remember significant things. Then I rewrote my brainstorm and now had everything in date order. That was helpful. Then I posted a poll on FB, one person answered (thanks Lorraine Kugelman!!) . I asked if people prefer a “Digest blog” or “Individual stories.” Lorraine vote was for stories. I rather agree. So then we broke for lunch, cause blogging is hard work and well, it was time to eat. All this time I have been supervising my daughter and insuring that she is doing her school work and her end of chores. She is. So then we eat, and I post about that on FB because I had decided to follow my Hcg progress on my business page since I had had some people inquire about it and I figured that doing that would help them decide whether or not they want to ultimately try it out for themselves. While we eat I plan my next move which is, take the dogs out to potty and then let the horses have some turn out time in their paddock. All goes as planned. After dog potty time I shoveled the deck and side walk. I’m not very good at snow shoveling yet. Practice makes perfect, right? Of course right. I ran down and got the mail and took the horses out. I closed the barn back up because Jason says when we leave it open it takes the barn a long time to warm back up. I was also surprised yesterday when I went to bring the horses in I saw that their water bucket I had placed in the run in stall to the barn was nearly completely frozen! So that confirmed that I should not leave the barn open as I did yesterday. The horses were confused as to why I shut the barn stall, they like that stall the most, especially Sky. As I left the barn I unhooked Natsar so he could have some “turn-out” time too. Sky was snuffling the snow and pawing at it as I trudged up the stairs heading towards the sunroom which we now pretty much use as a mudroom, to unload all my winter snow gear. I came in and tag-teamed Alayna so she could go do her stall chores as we had agreed. I told her she could take Ronen with her as long as she kept him with her and under control. Natsar doesn’t care for the other dogs to be in “his barn” and takes their presence as an intruding on his turf and lets them know they are unwelcome being so close to his feed bowl, etc. I just now posted this on FB:
“Brrr.. I’m thawing out once again. The horses are enjoying their turn out. Well Sky is, Justice is just eating hay and rolling his eyes at Sky, haha. They are getting their dose of Vitamin D for a few hours. They are quite the fuzzballs!”
Other posts I have posted today:
“Ahhh, I’m not on my A-game this morning. I’m failing at multi-tasking!! Focus Maritza, focus! haha
Digest blog post or individual stories? Which do you prefer? — B/ feeling spacey.”
“Before someone can know, they must be willing to know. One of my prayers always is to have a teachable spirit towards the things of YHVH.”
A friend of mine posted on FB that one of her daughter’s school was closed today because of a shooting threat that occurred. So scary!
Jason took my truck today to Waltham. I guess he figures it is safer on the snow and ice, not sure why, but I’m fine with that. I’d prefer him to be safe naturally. Brrr, I’m cold I sure could go for a nice cup of Hot Chocolate. I might just go with some tea instead though.
Sunday, December 15 – Snow Day!
Last night we went to bed with the excitement in mind that we would wake up to several inches of snow. The final count was unknown but we knew it would be enough to sled! In the morning we woke and looked out the window grinning ear to ear. There was a beautiful blanket of snow. I was very groggy when I woke up so it took me a few minutes to get myself together. Alayna got dressed in her snow gear almost instantaneously and reappeared with a smile. Jason donned his chore clothes as I had mandated that FIRST chores get done and THEN we play. J So off Jason and Alayna went to potty and feed the dogs and feed the horses. Jason returned to the house while Alayna was still addressing the issue of her boots to report to us that although the ground looked beautifully snowy, it was NOT powder. There was an ice crust. After we got snow it began to rain. The rain added an ice layer on top of the powdery snow. The dogs were having a difficult time navigating the crusty layer of ice as they went out to potty. In fact it made them sad. We finished chores and were all bummed because we figured it wasn’t going to be ideal conditions to go sled after all. Not even ideal for a hike around the property like we did last time. So after feeding the dogs we always bring them upstairs, let them get another drink of water and go to the potty one more time, then we bring them inside and we all hang out in the living room to do school or other tasks as needed. So this is what we did. Only, when it got to the point of letting the dogs out, they didn’t want to go. They recalled the difficulty they had walking around on the crusty ice so they all just huddled up to the door and waited for us to let them right back in. I fussed at Jason and asked him, since he was already wearing snow clothes, to go out and encourage the dogs to go with him. Jason took a snow shovel and stomped out through the ice and attempted to make a path. The Aussie Posse galloped out with him but huddled underneath him like little chicks instead of running around and going about their business as they would normally do. The Bulldog tromped through the ice and pottied and then ran back to the deck as fast as he could navigate through the ice (which wasn’t very fast). Chase on the other hand, stood on the deck. Earlier he followed Jason to the barn through the crusty ice and had a very difficult time of it. He wanted nothing to do with trying that again, besides he had already gone potty downstairs. So we brought all the dogs in and settled into our morning routine. Jason said, “well, I am going to go snowblow the driveway.” So after making a pot of coffee, off he went to do this task. None of us had seen the snowblower work yet so we spied out the window to catch a glimpse of how the machine operated. I snapped a couple of pics of Jason snow blowing. The distance the machine threw the snow was impressive. Later Jason said he thought it was cool to blow the snow up into the trees. The snow that blew up there, stuck! When Jason was wrapping up, I went out to take Jason a steaming cup of coffee to warm him up. I decided that I would take a minute and shovel the deck where the dogs come in and out of the house, and the front entry way and side walk. I found Jason on the side of the house and handed him his steamy cup. He was pretty steamy himself. He probably didn’t need the hot cup, but he accepted it anyway. We stood and talked for a minute and I told him I got some pictures of him pushing the snow blower.
|Snow Blower throwing snow!
So after he drank the cup of coffee he headed back down to the vehicles to finish what he was doing. I in-turn went to the sunroom and grabbed a snow shovel. The snow shovel had icicles on the handle. I took pictures of it because it looked cool.
I went and shoveled the snow as I had said. I tidied up the edges as Jason had already started the job, but I went in and perfected the edges so it looked pretty. After I was satisfied and thoroughly steamy myself I turned to the problem of the icy front yard that the dogs did not want to walk on to go potty. So Jason grabbed the shovel and began to clear a “potty area” in the yard for them to go to. My energy was gone since I’m currently on a low calorie diet. Alayna was getting lunch on so we wrapped up and went into the house to have lunch. Well as it turned out, I was the only one who was hungry. Jason and Alayna had eaten breakfast earlier, but I had not. I sat and ate and Jason came and chilled out for a few minutes. While we sat my phone began to ring. It was my neighbor. He was giggling about how us Texans might be fairing in our snow wonderland. We let him know we were doing fine and enjoying it. Hubby took the phone and chatted with him for a few minutes and during the course of the conversation he managed to talk Jason into trying to sled after all. “In fact,” he said, “you can borrow my toboggan.” We had a few sleds we had picked up at our local store. A tandem tube, a regular tube and a snow disc. Our neighbor insured us that his toboggan was the sled of choice, so my husband put his snow clothes back on and walked over to get it. Alayna and I actually did not know that is what he was doing because the conversation was private with the neighbor and when Jason left the house he said he was going to change the oil in the vehicles. A few minutes later, I am sitting on the couch and I see movement out of the corner of my eye. It is Jason climbing the hill that we had cited for sledding and he had a sled in tow! I watched him climb the hill and sled down while I scrambled to get my phone for a picture. I told Alayna and we were both watching him, unbeknownst to him. So I snapped a sequence of pictures of him sledding down the hill the 2nd time. Again, instantaneously Alayna was redressed in snow clothes. Meanwhile I opened the front door and tried to get Jason’s attention. He could see me, but couldn’t hear me. He returned to the house while I now threw my snow clothes on. We put the dogs in the basement so they wouldn’t be chasing and nipping at us while we were sledding and we headed to the “sled hill.” We had an absolute blast sledding on that hill. We popped both of the tubes, and the toboggan was the best pick for the job. The disc did ok, but is a little disheveled after a few slides down the hill. After that fun jaunt in the snow, we headed back to the house and were back to our day. Fun fun!
Tuesday, December 17 –
Getting this “hat thing” down! I’m truly not a hat person and am having a difficult go with these winter hats and my curls. They are just not friends, unless… I incorporate the hats into my hairstyle. So this is my new M.O. 🙂
|Hubbs and daughter at breakfast 🙂
My daughter and hubby are great at hats, but for me, it’s a little work!
|Sunday, December 22 –
So I just got back in from chores to find a tell-tail (misspelled on purpose) trail of random items strewn about the floor starting from the basement and continuing up through the 1st floor of the house. It looks like “someone” just went a little crazy here! Who could have done such a thing? I’ll tell you, it is our “special” kitty, Timmy (now that he is older he has been dubbed “Sir Timothy” because our other kitty is “Sir Rolf” and it just went with the theme).
When he does stuff like this we have to simply chuckle and say “ugh Timmy!!” because he can’t help himself. He is not your typical cat, but he is a lot of fun. We have had to make special adjustments to keep him from destroying the house. At this time he was supposed to have been in the basement with the kitty door locked, but someone made a mistake (wasn’t me, but I won’t point fingers).
He is the miracle kitty that as a tiny kitten was pushed aside by his mother at first. We soon discovered he couldn’t use his back legs because they were paralyzed. We prayed over him and asked Abba to make the determination as to whether he should stay alive or to “go.” He made it! We kept him and he has amazed us. He is like an eternal kitten (a lot bigger now of course, he’s a year old now). Very playful and very mischievous. We wouldn’t have him any other way!
Thankfully the situation was resolved without any major damage… this time.
Wednesday, December 25 – Our Testimony
THIS was the final straw for our family. We went to CHURCH one day. Expecting to see a Christmas play of Joseph and Mary, etc. We are fine with that. Although on the “wrong day” it is a Bible-based story. We were SHOCKED to discover that instead of the traditional Baby Jesus story, they did a whole program on the Christmas tree and how each decoration represented something concerning God and his son. How the green represented eternal life in Jesus and some other GARBAGE like this. My mom (who had insisted we go on this day, I had planned on not going, did not have a tree up in my home but wasn’t completely committed to my new decision of not celebrating Christmas for the warm toasty and what it meant to me reasons). So here we were, my then infant baby, my husband and Mom, sitting it the pews at an SDA church in Shreveport, LA with our jaws ON THE FLOOR at this procession about the Christmas tree. At this point we had done our research and knew what all these things meant. That was IT. I had my fake Douglas Fir Christmas tree in the attic. Later that day, I pulled it down and got RID of it. I was DONE. Never have I looked back. Thankfully my family, including most of my extended family walked away from Christmas too. Like I said, THIS was it, the defining moment, for me.
What did we do instead? Nothing. We just did not do anything at Christmas time from then on out. For 3 years we did nothing, we did not want to “replace” Christmas with anything else as a substitute (ie Hannukah in particular). It was much later when we decided to celebrate Hannukah when we learned more about this Feast. At the time we stopped doing Christmas we were not celebrating any other Biblical Holy Days. We did not know about them at the time. We simply STOPPED doing Christmas. I had already forgoed Easter many years back when we scratched our heads at the lack of connections between Egg laying rabbits and our Savior’s death on the cross for our sins. But that’s another story.
Every time the “season” rolled around we would revisit the reasons we chose to NO LONGER celebrate. Each year we learned more and more, and have deepened our convictions in this arena. I know it is a journey. From the day we learned about the truth behind “Christmas” otherwise truly known as “The Feast of Saturnalia” we camped on the truth for at least 5 years before we made our move to abandon Christmas altogether. What it meant to us did not matter. We began to understand that it was MORE important what it meant to YHVH.
My position is to not slam others for their beliefs. Especially those of us that once participated in these holidays know where others are coming from. My position is to simply inform. I realize that even that may not be taken well and I can’t help that. I have had quite a few unfriends because of my views. It is what it is. I will not stop sharing because I was once in their shoes. Conviction came… eventually. Everyone has to walk out their own testimony.
Coming from a Christian background, we were believers all along. My Mom is a praying person and has always been that way. Aside from ONE picture with Santa when I was like 4 years old I have not been taught to believe that Santa was “coming” or anything. That was a mistake and my Mom always pointed to “Jesus’ birth” at this time of year. The problem was that we were following tradition. Tradition that had been handed down from generation to generation. When our eyes were finally open to have understanding in this area, then we made the CHOICE to change what we were doing.
Thursday, December 26 –
My long awaited for calendar came in yesterday! I thought it might never come, but here it is! I have already hung it on the wall! I love it!!Friday, December 27 – The Passing of Grandmother Davis
We were saddened to receive the news that Jason’s Great Grandmother Davis passed away on Friday. I only had the honor of meeting her one time, she was a spry little lady. We brought her a Strawberry Blizzard by her request. She was thrilled to finally get to meet me, she remembered Jason like she had just seen him yesterday and she was able to meet one of her great granddaughters, our daughter. I’m glad to have gotten to meet her that one time and I’m happy to know that she is now resting in peace. Our deepest sympathies go out to all those effected by her passing.
Sunday, December 29 – Timmy…. again…
This whole week while Jason has been off of work we have been knocking out projects around the house. We have a wee problem in the form of a stripey, fluffy, Tabby cat named Timmy. We have a ton of coat hooks and plenty of room in our basement to treat it like a mudroom, but we let our boy cats run around in the basement which is a good thing because yesterday night they caught a mouse down there, so we like them to have access to the basement as a whole. The main problem is that Timmy is super playful like a baby kitten but he is in a grown cat body, fully equipped with an arsenal of razor sharp shreddy claws and chompy teeth. If we hang our jackets or place any soft shoes with laces in the basement they WILL, not *might* but WILL get shredded! We have come down to the basement to find our jackets strewn about. Timmy is one thing, a Mashuga (a Jewish term for a wild man), but he is another thing… a formidable hunter! As a result of this issue, simply meaning we have to keep the basement “Timmy proof” our common areas of the house are getting cluttered with shoes, hats, jackets, and all the stuff that we “could” keep out of sight in the basement. So I have implemented a new system that should help keep the common areas decluttered in the long run. We have a nice coat closet in the Living Room that I am now trying to keep up with hanging our sweaters, coats, scarves, hats, and storing gloves and boots. Also, we have implemented using the Sun Room as our Mud Room and that helps a great deal too as we can keep our snow boots, and muck boots in there on shoe trays designed specifically for them. The only problem is that these common areas had previous clutter from summer time, so I have taken this time to get to the bottom of the matter (literally) and we pulled everything out and reorganized what “needed” to be in these areas and stored the items that did not need to be there. So we are almost done with this since I took a slight diversion and worked on a “hot spot” in our bedroom and in the place of a pile of boxes I put two new bookshelves and unpacked the contents of most of the boxes and organized them on the shelves. Step-by-step we are getting there. Finding what works, etc. We are now in the process of planning our garden for the Spring. Also, our fencing scheme for the dog areas. Yay! I love seeing my plans come into fruition! If only I can shake these last few pounds… 😉
Well if I don’t get to write again until the new year 2014 then have a safe Gregorian Calendar New Year!