In my blog I plan to chat about nature, crafts, baking, gardening, beekeeping, family, and whatever else seems appropriate at the time. Sit back, relax, and enjoy!

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Christmas Day

On Christmas morning my Shug and I slept in.  I love having the tree by our bed. We shared a simple gift exchange with each other, I made breakfast and we relaxed awhile before getting ready for the day.
I did have a batch of "No Bake" cookies to whip up.  I always make them on Christmas Eve and Easter and I didn't have time to make them on Christmas Eve.  My Brother-in-law asked where they were!  So I made them for Christmas Day.  We packed up the car, and

after visiting with My Shug's Mother, who is in an assisted living facility, we gathered at my Sister and Brother-in-Laws house, where they have a real fireplace, and not just one on a computer!
I think my Sister-in-law, Lorri, wins the prize for the most creative looking food item!
Have you ever noticed people always tend to gather in the kitchen?
My Sister got our childhood stockings from Mom and filled them and put them by our place settings at the table.  Sweet.
 After we ate dinner it was time to open presents.  The three girls have always sat in the same spot on the floor in front of the tree.  While we were waiting for everyone to assemble, I gave them a "house" gift from me.  Inside the bag were a few kitchen items like hot pads and spatulas and a couple of baking mixes that I know they like.
 But the best part was I had a 55 year old cookbook copied for them.  It was a cookbook that The Lullaby Club from Logansport, Ind put together in 1959.  Our Mom, two of our Aunts, and several friends were members of this club.  Their recipes are in the book.  Mom has used this cookbook for years.  It's so worn out that she no longer has the cover, and the pages are in a baggie! I had to put it in order before taking it to get copies made.
Our family draws names in October to see who we are buying for at Christmas time.  I drew Mom and My Shug drew Andrew, our nephew.  We have a $50 limit.  We started this several years ago, and I love it.  It has made Christmas so much LESS stressful on shopping and the budget.  One gift we got Andrew was a tatoo sleeve!  (I made him the hat, at his request)
He is cracking up laughing because he was going to play a trick on Mom.  He knew she would hate it.  He said, "hey Grammaw, you want to see what Michelle got me for Christmas?"  She was sitting across the room and at first she said she did not want to even see it. 
But he got up and showed her the sleeve and she realized it was just that, a sleeve.

He, of course, does have a tat that he had to show her.  He's an artsy kind of guy.
Now it was family picture time.
Mom is thinking, why can't this family just take a "normal" family picture.  Well, we tried that in October...which I haven't had a chance to post....but these are just so much more fun!
Dad, stop trying to hide your face!
JEESH!  Andrew was trying to take this with a phone.

A camera with a timer....Better....
Not bad!
We had to take several pictures with everyone's camera and phone...and finally!
WE DID IT....sort of.....a few weren't smiling...but it's the best we can do!
I love that Ralphie is in the picture too!

Cindy Bee

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Christmas Eve

Hi everyone!  I hope you all had a very Merry Christmas and you are now taking a few moments to enjoy the after Christmas, before New Years, downtime.  I know, right!  WHAT down time?  I have been on the go since Christmas Eve (or before) but it's all been fun.

Since I haven't been online since Christmas Eve, I'll start with it. 
I cleaned our room and had it ready for Christmas Eve game night.  This is where we live.  Bed at one end, kitchen at the other, and recliners/tv in the middle.  I know I've shown you before, but I like to show it off when it's all cleaned up and ready for company!
 Here is a picture of my counter space on Christmas Eve.  It's how I cope having people in the one room that we live in to play games!
 I was actually very prepared this year for Christmas Eve.  I had a nice crackling fire in the computer!
Lots of sweet treats!  I made a couple of Mexican dishes this year for Christmas Eve.  Vickie  made her tortilla chip dip, which is always a hit.  Mom made delicious Mexican wedding cakes.  And Theresa brought over jalapeno poppers.  No reason we went with this food theme except that we were tired of all of the traditional food.  Thanksgiving came late this year and with Christmas only three weeks later, it seems like we just finished the thanksgiving leftovers when Christmas arrived!
You know Vickie surprised me with an Advent Calendar this year.  Here is a picture of it again for those that missed it.  The shoe rack is under the panel she made out of material.  I would lift the panel to take out a gift. 
My last gift was in a shoe box.  I opened it and it was "A Lonely Goatherd" puppet.  And when you move it's lips it sings, "High on a hill was a lonely goatherd, layee odl layee odl lay hee hoo!"  I think it sings the entire song! In the gift was also the Sound of Music CD.  FUN!  I L.O.V.E. the Sound of Music.  I wanted to grow up, get married, live in the country, have a dozen children, and make their clothes out of curtains!!!!
 Vickie also got my sister and me, our day after Thanksgiving shopping trip globage!  We didn't think they had them this year.  Apparently, they had them, but didn't advertise that they had them.  Here's what I think...the new tradition is for Vickie to get our globages for us.

We all fit cozily around the table and had dinner.
My Sister had a jalapeno popper and WOW!  They were hot.  She she grabbed the closest cup, which was a little red shot cup and a pitcher of water!!!!
After dinner, and before games, we celebrated my niece's 12th birthday.  Funny how things turn into tradition. The game night on Christmas Eve was something our parents started when all three of us (my Sister, My Brother, and I)  were single and living on our own.  (24 years ago) We kept Christmas Eve game night going and it became tradition.  My brother doesn't come because his family lives too far away to come on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.  When my niece was three or four, and was over for game night, it was also her birthday so we celebrated.  The year she was four she was wanting some footy pjs.  After a huge search, we found some, which she told us was the best day of her life? ( because we found footy pjs)  So now, she celebrates her birthday at our house in footy pj's! 
I think next year we ALL need to wear footy pjs!
Because we have so many Christmas goodies, her Mom usually brings a cupcake for her.  She opened her gifts, then the competition began!
First game, BINGO.  I bought a cheap $5.00 bingo game at Five Below and it was really quite funny trying to get the little balls out of the cage.
Mom took over being caller and really didn't do much better!
I have little gifts for winners.  Some are "zonks" and some are nice.  This year I got mostly practical gifts with some goodwill goodies.  And a few of the bags have lottery tickets in them.
We had too many girls this year so Vickie opted to be on the man team.  They won every game. Bleh on them!
This game required the teams to put their dominant hand behind their back, fold the box, and wrap it.  You worked as a team and could only use one hand.  Sloppy, but wrapped.
This game had a snowman in the middle of the paper,
with it's parts numbered.  Each team took turns rolling the dice.  You had to get numbers two, three, and four first, because the head and bodies were two, three, and four and you had to have the body before you started putting on parts.  Get it?  We could not get a two for anything.  Finally when we did, we rocked...but not fast enough.  Bleh on the men!
Then we played Win, Lose or Draw.

I'm going to try to let you guess some of these!  Answers below.  1)


And this was Robert.  He kept starting to draw something then he'd erase it and say noooo.  And he did that repeatedly for the entire 60 seconds!  We were cracking up laughing.

After this we played a dice game called Left, Right, Center.  I won twice!!!!  YAY me!  We had an enjoyable evening. After everyone left I cleaned up most of the mess, and relaxed. 
I have a December tradition.  When I put up the tree, I read "goody-goody" Christmas stories.  It's something I've done for several years and I love these stories.  I got a late start this year, so I'm going to continue my Christmas story reading into January.
 OK GO!  Can you guess the have 60 seconds for each drawing.  They are songs or movies.

Cindy Bee

1) The Grinch that Stole Christmas
2) Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree
3) Jingle Bell Rock (LOL! I know! The big round thing is a rock)
4) Feliz Navidad
5) Santa Baby
6) It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas