Thursday, December 31, 2015

Happy New Year!

Wow I can't believe 2015 is over!

I'm here in America but my Mum is in England and every New Year's Eve for a LONG time we ring each other up and see in the New Year together (her time). We listen to Big Ben and Auld Lang Syne. It's a tradition. This time last year I thought it might be our last one. Mum had been diagnosed with Esophagus cancer just after I had visited her in October 2014 and this time last year was in the middle of chemotherapy and radiation treatment. It was a really rough time for her (she was 78 at the time) and not a good time for me being so far away. I am so lucky to have sisters that took care of her and kept me informed (I knew Mum wouldn't want me to worry so maybe wouldn't tell me everything). Luckily she has been clear for a little while now so this holiday season has been special to her.

I am SO lucky to have spent another New Year's Eve with Mum listening to Big Ben. We Skype now so we get to see one another instead of just hearing each other and the telly on the phone.

HAPPY NEW YEAR! Hopefully 2016 will be a good one.

Wednesday, December 30, 2015


It's Wednesday again! Yikes, where did the week go?

I'm joining Julia over at Stamping Ground for another WOYWW.

There isn't a lot on my desk (table) this week. Now that daughter is mostly moved out I am trying to sort through my craft stuff and get it moved up to my 'new' room. I get to pick out a desk (hubby's gift to me). Unfortunately the one I want is not in stock :( I did get other crafty storage to get started on. That's what's on my desk today. Putting together paper organiser and sorting out paper.

Who knew that putting together those organisers could be so difficult?!!! You needed STRENGTH to push those things together.

I have decided that I have a LOT of stuff. It has been stashed all over the place as I did not have my own room. Pulling it out and seeing it all has made me think that I don't need to buy any more crafty stuff for a while!! I have a couple of card making/scrapbooking glue-type things to replace as I used them all at Christmas, but a part from that I am not going to buy anything. I love shopping for crafty supplies - as I'm sure many of you can understand lol - but I am going to set myself a short-term goal NOT to buy anything (except what I've said) for the whole month of January. I can probably go a lot longer (and will) but I like setting short-term goals as they are more manageable to me.

Anybody have any goals they are setting for themselves? I want to participate in a couple of challenges for 2016 but haven't seen many yet.

Well off to go look around. 

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Had a lovely day Christmas Day. Went to MIL. I got lots of goodies for my new craft room and an IOU from hubby for a desk!! 

MIL had her tree up. It was beautiful. A lot of the ornaments are handmade. I couldn't resist taking pictures of them.

She was really busy this year - she made us all blankets, beaded us all Christmas ornaments (backed with a felt pocket so she could put in a money gift) and crocheted us all dish clothes and hand towels. WOW! Made me feel quite inadequate lol. She LOVED the scrapbook I made her. FIL was very pleased with his gift too - while daughter was in Washington she picked him up a statue of The Lone Sailor (he was in the Navy) and while we were there hubby and daughter took a picture with the actual memorial. I enlarged and framed the picture and presented with the statue. He was very touched.

My MIL really appreciate hand made gifts. I am going to have to try to think of something special next year especially since I have the time!

Hope everyone had a good day!

Wednesday, December 23, 2015


Phew - I made it! Better late than never lol. I'm joining Julia over at Stamping Ground for What's on Your Workdesk Wednesday

My 'desk' is a mess but I am FINISHED crafting for now! So happy! I just got finished with a scrapbook for MIL of our trip to Washington DC. I decided last week it would be a good idea to do it lol. Crazy, I know.

I will be clearing up the table so we can use it. Now I have to get started on baking! I am going to spend some time later visiting other pages.

I hope everyone has a Happy Christmas.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

This will be the last big Christmas I do. I have decided. We are thankful to be able to have our kids all spending Christmas Eve and Christmas Day with us but it will probably be the last. They are getting older and beginning to have their own lives and I know that, at some point, I will have to share.

I am still working on a crafty project for Christmas. Aarggg!! Not sure why I thought - a week before Christmas - that putting MIL together a scrapbook of our time in Washington would be a good idea. I suppose I might have been doing better if not for daughter's birthday and graduation.

Gifts are all wrapped now (except the ones arriving tomorrow!) so I will be working on the project all day tomorrow and will hopefully have it done!

It is fun looking through all the pictures again.

Korean Veteran's War Memorial. These stainless steel statues are so very detailed. This is truly a moving piece.

The above two photos are both part of the Vietnam memorial. The first one is The Three Soldiers (or The Three Servicemen) and the second is as labelled. They are both so very detailed - truly amazing up close.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

My 'baby' graduated from University!

My youngest daughter graduated MSU yesterday which also happened to be her 22nd birthday! I am SO very proud of her. I must admit to shedding a little tear. All three of our kids have now graduated university. We are so lucky to have had their 4-year university courses paid for. The costs of their education was massive and there is no way we could have done it without the Kalamazoo Promise.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

We had a really fun trip picking up daughter in Washington. There are so many things to see - know we didn't see everything. I think I'd like to go back for another trip. Hubby said the same thing. I think we'd forgo driving in the city though and use the underground. I have to say that I was a little disappointed in the metro. London's underground is colourful - lots of adverts and light. The Metro was dull and very concrete. They are missing out on a great advertising gig. There was not an advert in sight!

The thing I did like about Washington was that most of the museums and attractions were free! We visited the National Archives and got to see the Declaration of Independence, Bill of Rights etc and the Botanical Gardens. Both were free! Also went to the Lincoln Memorial, Washington Monument, White House, World War II memorial and all were free! We also got to see the Lincoln Theatre where Lincoln was shot. Getting around by Metro was certainly easier than driving.

We were so lucky with the weather. We couldn't have asked for better days. It was fairly warm and the sun was shining brightly. We got to walk around and enjoy things. MIL and FIL came with us. It was a bit of a job for them to get around - which is why we drove some places. Parking was difficult to find especially disabled parking, but there was some (to be fair) but not signposted very well. I preferred going around by underground - which we did when they got tired out and went back to the hotel.

I loved this view of the Washington Monument. We were gifted with a lovely reflection that day too.

This was HUGE! I did not realise it would be so big lol.

The Vietnam Wall memorial was stunning. There are so many many lives lost. It was quite sobering.

I'll share more pictures another day. I am still sorting through them, still digesting...

Wednesday, December 16, 2015


Wow - it's been a while! I missed two weeks. I am finally hooking up with Julia over at Stamping Ground for What's on Your Workdesk Wednesday.

Things have been a little crazy around here. A couple weeks ago we went to Washington D.C to pick up daughter. She has been there for the past three months on an internship. We had a lovely time there. I will share some pics...just not today. We saw The White House complete with Christmas tree and so many other sights. I have to say the most moving thing was the Vietnam War memorial. It is stunning. 

So she's back and she had already found an apartment in Lansing so we've begun to move her stuff up there. We're sorting and moving and back and forth with appointments. It is also her birthday this coming weekend as well as graduation! She will be graduating from University on her birthday - so proud of her.

I did manage to get in some crafting. I confess to taking the pictures yesterday. I was working on a calendar for my Mum - which is now safely in the post. I made cards for her and my sister. I was trying to hurry and get things done and I think I forgot to write in my Mum's card!!! I did let her know though. I've so relieved the calendar is done. I have made one for her for years. It is getting harder and harder now that the kids are getting older and don't want their pics taken as often.

It was truly a mess :( Some news on the desk front - because daughter is moving out I WILL be having my craft room. We have to get all her stuff sorted and out and then I can work on making it my room. So the New Year.

I'm off to look at the other desks. It's finally quiet in the house.