Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Bittersweet Present - Coffee with Al

December 30th Tuesday - Snow flurries - Cold

The picture above shows a table runner that my older daughter, Susie made me for Christmas.  It by its self is special, but the story behind it makes it very special.

When my husband died Susie asked me if she could have all of his shirts that were cotton, so she, Krista and I went through all of Al's shirts and sorted them out for her.  Al loved to shop and he liked bright colors and stylish clothing; therefore, he had a lot of shirts and a variety of colors.  Susie took them home in a large garbage bag and put them in her attic.  I do think she used a couple of them to make Krista a quilt when she had cancer, but other than that they had remained in the attic.

Imagine my surprise when I opened my Christmas present and saw a fabric label that read "Coffee with Al".  That is what she named my table runner. What a flow of memories that came back to me as I stared at the runner.  It was perfect timing for some reason this Christmas season had been very difficult this year and the runner and quilt were very comforting.  I placed the quilt on a chair in the kitchen.
Isn't it pretty?
She does beautiful work.  I will post some of her other work later in the week.  This is a very appropriate place for the "shirts" to hang, as Al always sat in a chair in the kitchen when I came home from work and chatted with me about our day while I finished up dinner.  Those were special times.

Monday, December 29, 2014

Christmas Gifts

December 29th - Monday - Cloudy 30 degrees

Christmas is over and I have our tree down and the inside decorations back into the closet for another year.  I still have all of the outside decorations up yet and will keep them up until after the New Year.  I am always anxious to get my house settled back into a routine after the holidays and this year I was especially anxious.  I have always wanted a Kitchen Aid mixer, but didn't want to spend the money on one.  After my two shoulder surgeries, I have not been able to stir dough and Lou has very graciously accomplished that chore for me; however, he purchased this little gal for me for Christmas and let me tell you, she can stir up anything that I want to stir and can do with out any fuss or mess and that counts for a lot for me.  I made a pecan pie pretty quick with her help.
Pecan pie before it went into the oven.
My next project is going to be homemade bread and cinnamon rolls.  This may not be good for our
waist lines, but thankfully Maci needs to be walked frequently!!

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Meet Maci

December 21st - Sunday 28 degrees

This is our new addition is our family.  We picked up our new rescue Yorkie yesterday from her foster family in Frederick, Maryland.  What a delight she is,  God's timing was perfect once again, it was exactly 15 years to the day that I signed the papers for my last Yorkie, Estee.  This little gal, was a puppy mill rescue from the State of Ohio and she will be a challenge to train, but Lou and I are up to the challenge and will enjoy every minute of it.  Love, patience and persistence can go a long ways in training a dog and we are willing to do that.  Her foster family have done so much for her in the few short months that they had her.  They deserve so much credit and I hope to stay in contact with Cindy.  I don't know that I could do what she did and then give her away.

She was a delight t o ride home.  We stopped at Brion and Janet's home on the way home, to give all of us a rest and Maci was able to walk around in their spacious yard and she made her self at home in their beautiful home and then she slept the rest of the three hour trip home.  We stopped in Williamsport for gas and she got out and went potty and back in her bed on my lap and back to sleep.
Her b ed at home in the living room
She was very content to rest in her b ed while we watched a movie on television, then we had to have a run outside before going to bed in a different bed in the bedroom last night, she slept well last night until about 7:30 this morning and then outside.  I was concerned about leaving her while we went to church, so finally decided to put her in the guest bathroom with her bed and a pee pad, she was fine, so accidents when we got back.

We have yet to hear her bark.  I had her outside when my brother put his cows out this morning and she stopped dead in her tracks, but she didn't bark, she just watched them.  The turkeys were all out this afternoon and she once again, watched them and didn't bark then either.  She is a very calm dog and so easy to groom and dress.  Am so looking forward to many years of loving her.
She likes Mike Hucklebee, so she and Lou will get along!!

Friday, December 12, 2014

Winter Has Arrived in Northern Pennsylvania

December 12th  - Friday 27 degrees

We thought we had escaped the storm that was forecasted for our area; however, we woke up to eight inches of white fluffy snow yesterday morning.  My boots aren't that tall, so Lou shoveled me a little path as he went to the garage to get the snow blower out.  He did the driveway with the blower and I did the decks, sidewalks and the areas that he couldn't reach with the blower.  I really enjoy the snow and this is the first year in two years that I have been able to shovel the light snow, I had to come in twice to get warm and this year I used toe warmers on the feet and that worked pretty good.

Lou was supposed to meet his hunting buddies at 8:00 to go deer hunting, but we didn't get finished until 10:30, and by the time he got there they were gone and he couldn't find them, so he ended up shoveling his driveway at the homestead, as the man that usually plows it never showed up and he knew that Preston would be coming late Thursday night to stay the rest of the week to hunt, so he was really pooped last night.

I spent the afternoon at Krista house making Christmas cookies with she and Michelle.  It was a really nice afternoon, time to chat with everyone and catch up on their lives in their new house.

This gives you an idea of what Krista's kitchen is like.
Krista had her cookies all stirred up and refrigerated when I got there, so it made it a quick process.  Actually she did most of the work, Michelle made the frosting and she and frosted the ones that needed to be done.
This is a picture of their house.
I took this picture a couple days after they moved in,  There is a creek way behind the house, and a beautiful view from the lovely back deck, a potting shed on the left side of the house.  It is a darling home and they feel so very fortunate to be there.  Moving was very stressful for all and one that no one wants to repeat soon.  Where do you get all of "stuff" from??

I am in the process of adopting a Yorkie and it just can't happen quick enough.  I am so anxious, but it is a long process.  I am going through a Pennsylvania organization and they have been very nice to work with and very thorough which speaks volumes for the Yorkies and that is what one would wish.  I didn't think I wanted to go through potty training again, although Estee was very easy and I think when you use a crate and are at home with your pet it is much easier.

I have my Christmas decorations all up inside and out, although I didn't put a lot outside.  I was delighted with the table runner that Susie made me for my birthday last year.  I don't know how she picked colors for Christmas and made sure that they would match my dinnerware so well, she did a perfect job.
Isn't it pretty?
I have to post a picture of the visitors we have every afternoon, I think it is amazing.  They come right up to the barn, but now that we have the snow, I don't know what they will do.  I can go outside and they stay right there.   They were there even during turkey season, and I didn't have the heart to shoot, I just think they are beautiful.

I took this through the window the first time I saw them.

Saturday, November 15, 2014


November 15th - Saturday - Sunny - Cold

Lou and I have the opportunity of visiting used car sales lot in Jersey Shore and when I walked in the door this is what I saw.

Memories flowed back so quickly of this car.  This is exactly the car that I drove back and forth to MSU to college in 1960 and what a joy she was to drive.  I was fortunate, she was provided to me by my parents.  Daddy paid for the gasoline, I worked part-time, making the huge amount of $32.00 per week, $10.00 went into my savings, $10.00 to my parents, $2.00 to church offering, and $10.00 to me.  Not bad was it?  What would the kids today think of that?

My parents raised broiler chickens and purchased this car and paid cash for it.  They were so proud of their purchase.  We all worked hard raising chickens along with our dairy cows; however, I wouldn't trade growing up on a working farm for anything.  It was a great like.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Another Project Completed

November 14th - Friday - Snow Flurries and much colder - 19 degrees this am

This is a Butler's Table that my late husband built years ago, and just prior to his death, he fell into it and broke one of the boards.  Lou found it in our barn and looked at it and thought he could fix it.  A friend of his had made a special brace to fix picture frames with and he thought that would work on the top of this table.  Lou brought the table to the house and we cleaned it up and he used a special wood glue on it, used the brace on it and indeed it did work.
Notice the homemade brace that can be adjusted.

I am so pleased to have the table back in our living room and in use again.  I was going to paint it black to match the rest of the tables; however, Lou felt it was better to leave it as Al had made it, so it stayed the same.

Another project that we have been trying to get accomplished since we got back from Florida has been accomplished thanks to grandson, Travis.  He and Noell came over on Tuesday and took care of the problem with the skirting.  He did a great job, reinforced it with plywood that he brought with him, it looks so good.  We are so thankful to him.  I just regret that I didn't even get a picture of them working on it!!  Can you believe that.  I so enjoyed having them here and we walked around the property so they could see what Lou has done as they haven't been here in some time.  Lou was at the homestead winterizing three lawn tractors for the season, which is another job completed.  Travis is going to help Lou jack up our Tack Room and secure it next year.  That building means so much to me, as my father purchased it from a neighbor 70 years ago and he helped Al and I drag it down here 24 years ago and it has housed many kinds of animals and been used for many things, I just have to preserve it.  Krista and Steve put a new roof on it six years ago.  Tim removed a huge hive of bees from it one winter.  It has a lot of history...

We had trick and treaters but I can only show pictures of Matthew, as Shawn and Maegan won't allow pictures of their girls on line.
Frosted was a popular theme this year, Krista made Matthew's costume, as did Maegan make the girls and they were cute and well done also.  Never met a little girl that didn't enjoy being a princess.

We had the pleasure of keeping Matthew one day and he enjoyed playing with toys that all of the kids have enjoyed.  
Matthew and "Bill Dings"
He was able to put a bunch of Bill Dings together all by himself.  Those were mine when I was a kid, so those have seen the hands of many kids.  Matthew is going through his dairy challenge and up to sterilized milk and doing well.  We are all so excited about this.

Krista has a move in date of December 1st.  We are all going to spend Thanksgiving Day packing the U-Haul truck.  We are all very excited about this move for their family.  Will be a very busy week for all involved, but worth every minute of it.  God has indeed answered prayers on this.


Thursday, October 30, 2014

Beauty of Fall

October 30th - Thursday - Partly Cloudy - Cooler

Even though it is cooler, I can't help but enjoy the beauty of fall.

I planted this Bittersweet vine the year before my husband died (2006) and it grew well, but never had any berries.  In fact, it really grew more than I wanted it to.  Last year Lou and I decided we would cut it back, because it was getting almost more than we could manage.  We cut it back and Lou built a new support for it to grow on.  I guess this is what it wanted, as this year we noticed it had berries and I have been watching for them to pop and look at how it has "popped".  I am thrilled with the results.  Krista tied it up a little more yesterday, to help protect it a little more during the winter.

Witch Hazel
This is our Witch Hazel tree that I planted the year that Al died and I noticed yesterday that it has blossomed, isn't it pretty?  As the leaves come off the blooms are more noticeable.  I had always seeing these trees in the woods when I would go hiking and when I found it at the nursery, I thought this would be interesting to have at home.
Blue Bird.
Look what stopped in to visit yesterday.  I think it is interesting that they always stop on their way south, as if to say "we are leaving now, but will be back in the spring".

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Sluice Pipe Project Completed!!

October 29th - Wednesday - Cloudy and Cooler

Yesterday one of Lou's dreams came to a conclusion.  He has wanted to have a pipe around our property to carry excess water away in the spring or any time we have an abundance of rain.  He started digging the ditch several weeks ago and found that he sorta enjoyed digging it.  I tried to get him to rent a small back hoe to do it, but said he enjoyed doing it.  It is bottom land and very few rocks.  Al had put a metal sluice pipe across so we could drive across the area and at one time Krista had dug a ditch, but it has filled up with dirt from next door.

Preston drove up from Tyrone yesterday and helped his dad finish the job and he was able to stay until about 4:00, then Krista helped Lou connect the last piece of pipe and we secured wire across the last  piece to keep any foreign objects from plugging the pipe and Lou dug a collection basin  and put as much of the sod back in place as he could before he quit at 6:00 pm.  He was pretty pleased with the finished project.
This gives you an idea of how long of a ditch  they dug.

This is where they make a curve 

They made sure they kept it at a grade to keep it flowing

"It's level Grandpa".

Connecting the last piece.
While the men were working of the pipe, Krista cut off all of the Autumn Joy, and kept me supplied with what I needed to work on the roof.  I cleaned the gutters, fixed a spot that was leaking in the gutter and repaired a shingle, trimmed branches from two trees and took care of a couple places that were leaking on our roof over the deck.
Trimming branches.
 Krista and I  were busy working all day long, putting the exterior water to bed for the winter, putting plastic over the barn windows, bringing the snow blower up for winter and washing windows and Matthew was with us most of the day. He loved to be with his Grandpa, but he was afraid to walk down the bank by himself, so either Krista or I would walk down with him and hold his hand.  Finally on our last trip he did it on his own and was he ever proud of himself.  We have really enjoyed this fall.  He has been so easy to keep content, just give him his bucket of toys, a dirt pile and he is happy!!!

Doesn't he look proud?
Lou also finished his project on the bank, has his stone wall finished and has his grass seed planted, just waiting for rain.  Certainly is going to make it much easier to cut the grass.
People that knew what it looked like before can really appreciate the difference.

Yesterday we broke an all time high it was 79 degrees, and today it is 53 degrees, and I am going to get back to my fall house cleaning.  I have certainly enjoyed being outside and will take advantage of the good days when I can.

I am still looking for someone to help Lou with the Work  Shop, as we want to jack it up and probably put some new support under it and someone to repair the skirting on our home.  We call people and get promises without results or they don't even return our phone calls.  I understand other home owners have the same problems.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Hair Wreath

October 19th - Sunday

While at the Glenn Curtiss Museum I took a picture of this wreath.  It is made from human hair that was collected by one individual.  It is then woven into this beautiful wreath.

I can remember when I was a child, my Grandma Gerow would brush my long dark brown hair then clean out the brush and roll the hair around her finger and put it in a special dish on her dresser and she would do the same for herself.  She did not make a wreath, she made jewelry.  I remember a pin that she often wore.  Now I wonder what ever happened to it.

I bet these dishes bring back memories to some of you also.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Preparations for Winter

October 18th - Cloudy and Cool

We have returned home from our trip to the Wine Country.  We certainly enjoyed our time spent touring the area.  I had not mentioned that we also spent time at Sampson Naval/Air Force Base.  There is now a Museum there where there once was a "brig".  I know very little about the Navy, so found the museum very interesting.
The entrance to the Museum

I found this picture interesting, as when Al and I visited Sarasota, FL the last time, there was a huge statue of this scene.

When Lou and I came back on Friday night after having dinner with Ande and Dennis and their granddaughter Jaimie we found the campground had filled up completely.  The pumpkin man was next to us.  The majority of the people were square dancers and they were there for a weekend of square dancing.  We went up to watch them dance; however, they were having a meeting and we had to check out by 1:00, so didn't get to see them.  We did see several couples that we knew.  We would have stayed a little longer, but we had told Brion and Janet we would be home for the weekend, as Spencer and Meredith were coming up.

We had breakfast with them on Monday morning as they were heading back to Virginia.  Lou and I had not met Meredith before and enjoyed getting a little acquainted with her.

We spent the early part of the week getting the RV cleaned up and winterized and back into the barn, thankfully we had good weather to accomplish that project.  Lou went back to working on his bank project and building the stone wall.
Lou working on the flower bed.
Lou has worked on this bank off and on for the five years that he has lived here and now has the idea of making a stone wall and adding dirt to it from a ditch that he is going to dig that will house a sluice pipe.  Then we can plant more wild flowers in the spring.  Many years ago this was a dump and Al and I have picked junk out of here and hauled it away for years, we cut down trees  the year before Al died, I have picked rock, Susie came over and helped me pick rock, Estee and I dug up weeds, it has been a constant  project, and you can see it shows progress.  Lou has mowed a lot of it and what he doesn't mow, I have a couple of guys that use their weed eaters on it.

The next project is putting in the sluice pipe that Lou has at his house.  We have to wait for Brion to bring it over on the trailer, then we can start on it, hoping to get rid of the flooding we have every time we have lots of rain.  My brother thinks Lou likes to dig ditches!!

While Lou was doing this, I cleaned out the spouting on the garage and when I did that I noted some shingles on the coal shed had come off, so I got Krista to nail new ones on for me.  I can not hammer due to my shoulder, so she took care of that job for me.  I made a new roof for a bird house and painted it and got it back up.  Seems good to get some little jobs done.  Krista also helped us get our treadmill set up in the garage and I am really enjoying using that each day.  I thought I would be sore, but am in better shape than I thought.
New shingles in place

Susie had her surgery on Monday and got the final biopsy back late yesterday and it was cancer free, praise God.  She is pretty miserable pain wise, but coping by doing some of her knitting, but certainly she is not used to having to stay at home.

Yesterday, I did three pressure cookers of beets, so that takes care of the rest of the things in our garden, and now we can get it rototilled  and it will be ready in the spring.  Hopefully, it will do better next year.

Next week will be busy, we have appointments at the Bath VA and in Carlisle, but doesn't sound like weather that we could work outside.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Seneca Lake - Watkins Glen, NY

October 9th  - Sunny 60 degrees

After a breakfast of scrambled eggs and sausage we left for the Seneca Lake Winery Tour.  Our first stop was at Finger Lakes Distilling.   Lou and I had read about them about a year ago and had planned on visiting them and our visit was most rewarding.  We had hoped to be able to take in a tour; however, they only do them by appointment and only on Saturdays, so we will have to wait until a later time.  The cost of the tour is $18.00 per person and it usually lasts for 1 ½ hours.

It was a perfect morning for sight seeing, as the fall foliage was beautiful, it was a bit windy and the water was a bit choppy.  We went on up the trail and stopped at a farm market and picked up some winter squash and some fresh cheese and ended up at Wagner’s Winery at lunch time.  We ate at Genny Lee CafĂ©.  Lou and I both ordered French Onion Soup and split a wonderful steak burger.  Our view of Seneca Lake was very picturesque and enjoyable as we ate our delicious lunch.

After our lunch we went into the tasting room, which now includes wine and beer.  We were able to do some Christmas shopping which always pleases us when we can share our travels with friends and family.

We continued to drive the rest of the length of Seneca Lake and then down the other side, then we drove past Waneta Lake and Lamoka Lake.  The sunshine and the fall foliage were just beautiful on the country roads that we traveled.  We arrived back home about 5:00 pm.  Thankfully, I had prepared our dinner this morning, so I just popped it in the oven and in an hour we sat down to a new recipe of Italian Style Chicken and Peppers, tossed salad, garlic bread and some of our new wine.

Tomorrow morning Lou has an appointment with the audiologist at 8:00 am, so we will be off early.

Glenn H. Curtiss Museum - Hammondsport, NY

October 8th - Wednesday - Partly Cloudy, Windy, fall day in New York State.

We arrived at our campsite at Camp Bell in Campbell, NY on Tuesday afternoon and got set up and enjoyed a leisure dinner of escalloped potatoes and pork chops, some of Krista’s homemade apple sauce and fresh green beans.  I had baked some pumpkins bars and brought them along for dessert and they tasted good with some fresh coffee.  With the site that we were assigned we were able to get our dish television to work, and Lou was delighted and right at home.  We were able to get in a nice walk while our dinner baked in the oven.

It was a beautiful evening, it reached 72 degrees and a beautiful sunset that we could view from our window.  It rained during the night and when we awoke in the morning, the sun was out and we had a quick breakfast of Canadian Bacon and eggs and we were off to the Curtiss Museum.  What a delight that was, we spent almost five hours in there.

I have been readying books about early women in aviation and they had a section on that depicting the pioneers in that situation.  Mr. Curtiss was instrumental in the invention of the motorcycle and I was amazed to see an Indian Cycle 1911.

We saw a motor cycle with a side car that Mr. Curtis made for his wife, the car that she sat in was a wicker seat.  Mr. Curtis set a record for the “Fastest Man in the World” in 1907 at 136.36 MPH on his motor cycle.

It showed the Curtis Model June Bug that was build in 1908, many people learned to fly using this model.  He received the first pilot’s license ever issued.  Number 1 in 1911.

As we made our way through the museum, there was a display that was dedicated to World War I and World Was II, as many engines that were used were made in plants from Hammondsport, NY.  He made Seaplanes that were made for the Navy.  We found an interesting fact, that he made the first travel trailer, I think that was in 1919.

He lived 52 years and was credited with over 500 inventions during his lifetime.

Lou got to go back into the Restoration Shop and talk to Norm and they found they knew several people and had worked on one of the engines that was in the museum.

Throughout the museum, there was a display from the Corning Embroidery Guild of their handiwork and it was amazing and I had to take time to look at their work

Also on display were hand made doll houses and I am afraid that pictures can not do them justice.  We certainly enjoyed viewing them.

After leaving the museum, we drove into Hammondsport and ate lunch at Luna Mezza.  Lou and I ordered Seaford Bisque and a Reuben Sandwich and we each had coffee.  It was the best coffee that we have had in months.  In fact, our lunch was marvelous, the restaurant was clean and nicely decorated with lovely dining music.  Dave Fice is the manager.  Certainly a stop  worth making.  Our soup was full of tasty seafood and served piping hot.  We split our sandwich and our waitress graciously brought us an additional plate without having to ask for it.

After lunch we drove to Bully Hill Winery, it was getting late when we arrived and it was made very apparent by the staff that we didn’t have much time to taste and select our wine for purchase; however, we did make a purchase and left before they ushered us out.
This is the first travel trailer

It was interesting, as we were going up the step to the tasting room, I met a gal on the steps and she said, “don’t I know you?” I smiled at her and she then continued, she did know me from the office and we chatted for a bit and caught up on five years quickly before we parted.  Retirement is nice, but I do miss my patients!!

The View from Bully Hill was wonderful

It was a nice day and we certainly enjoyed our day at Keuka Lake.