Thursday, September 29, 2011

My First Time Tea Party

This week has been a busy and long one.

I attended a Tea . This was a new experience for me. A wonderful time was had by all. It was in honor of the 25th  Anniversary of a Mural the Senior Center had done on the wall doors between the cafeteria and the gym.

Each table was done by someone different. I had been asked if I would do one. It was fun but ended up at the last minute changing what I planned on doing as I could not find a fresh centerpiece anyplace in with blues, pinks and whites. So my table went fall rather and rather simple instead of lacy and fancy.

They served several kinds of tea, small muffins of all sorts fresh fruit with a fruit topping. and scones. Scones were something that I am sorry to say I had never had. I rather liked them too.  I guess as the old saying goes "you are never to old to learn".

This is a picture of one of the tables done by one of the Volunteers.  They are drivers for the Meals on Wheels program and just great people. It is taken in front of the  Mural or at last a section of it.

I thought I would share a few of the decorated tables. 

I loved the combination she used in table coverings. It was simple but elegant I thought.

One of the fall ones. I loved the idea and it was so simple. A beautifully fall wrapped box with miniature pumpkins and gourds,  with fall berries and fall leaves scattered around and an ivy bowl filled with candy corn and flowers.

I thought this was very nice and I liked that there were two teapots to the table being it was an  eight foot table. Blue and fall seemed to be the colors for the day.

Loved the country look of this table. Beautiful quilted placemats and the tall bee-hive teapot were just so cute. The sugar and creamer were a bee. Very cute I thought . And  of course there just had to be a bear or two tucked in there.

The fall theme was used here on this eight foot table. I loved the colors.

This is the table I did. simple flower arrangement sitting on scattered leaves and leaves scattered on the table.Not as fancy as I had started out to do just  could not find everything I wanted to do. But I was happy with it.

I loved these cups and saucers. They had matching sugar, creamer, teapot, and bowl for your used teabags.

This was simple but very pretty. Notice the tiny teapot setting in front of the arrangement. There were 4 tiny ones around it along with little milk glass bunnies.

.I thought this was very well done. Fall but I loved the layered look of the different table coverings. I thought the pens with the flower on top just sort of added a special touch to the table also.

This is a picture taken during the time we were setting the tea up. It shows a bit more of the mural we were honoring. My sister-in_law is  right in the middle of the picture with the gray sweater jacket as I had invited her to come with me.

I  will in another post share a bit about how the mural came about, and a bit of history of my town. I sure learned a lot more than I had ever heard. Even my sister-in-law learned things she did not know and she was born and raised here.

I hope that everyone is having a wonderful week, enjoying all the fall weather and colors. They are certainly changing fast.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Fall is in the Air

The leaves are changing and the nights are cool. I am loving having the windows open during the day and letting the fresh breezes  flow through the house. Not much longer and it will be way to cool to air the house for any length of time.

The dogs are enjoying the cooler weather. They love going out and laying on the deck for hours. Of course they love watching all the birds, barking to scare them away . It is if they are saying go away this is my yard.

The summer birds are almost all gone. I still have a couple later leaving hummingbirds coming to the feeders, but if they stay on schedule they will be leaving by this week end. Even the robbins in the yard are few and far between. The blue jays are now coming to the house waiting for the winter feeders to go up.  I have already started stocking up on birdseed, suet cakes, and ears of dried corn for my winter friends.

I have finally got some fall decorating done and  now just need to drag up Halloween things to add to them. I thought today I would share some of my fall decorations with you.

My fall table  decorations. Loved the place mats and sunflowers are such a fun fall decoration. They had matching rugs so  I got two  rugs to use on the floor in front of my stove and  kitchen sink.

Fall flowers in teapot sitting on end table. I love being able to pull out all the doilies my grandmother made and using each fall. Grandma has been gone 51 years and they seem to be close to her again when I use each of them.

My fall tree is hanging above my fireplace. Just orange and white light with fall flowers, pumpkins and scarecrows. I will add Halloween ornaments for October. Halloween will also take over the mantle of the fireplace.

 I love my pumpkin scarecrow.  The wooden pumpkin is one of several I made some time ago. I did enough for all the tables at our Senior Center. They were a hit. So much that over the course of a few days some were smuggled out in someones purse.

Closer up of the tree showing the flowers , pumpkins and one of the scarecrows. 

I have a few more but will add my Halloween items before showing what I have done. 

Enjoy the fall. Remember that the cold, ice  and snow is not far behind  the beauty of this Season

Then we can enjoy the beauty of the winter, 
Until then. 

Happy Fall Y'all

Thursday, September 22, 2011

A Walk to End Alzheimer's

This past week end I did a " Walk to End Alzheimer's. This is the first time I have ever participated in anything like this. I donate to many good charity's but just have never tried doing  any thing such as a race or walk. I have bad knees, back, and also  asthma, and  some days just know it would be impossible to walk far. Our son-in-law had signed up to walk with our local Senior Center team. I figured if he can do this after a massive heart attack in  early June and 4 heart surgeries since that I could do it. It was a two  mile walk  or a short walk of 1/4 mile. We did the short one and both felt so good we started off on the 2 mile walk. My dear hubby decided and told me  after we got there he was going to also walk with us. I had thought he was going to take us and go shopping and then come back to get us. What a nice surprise when he said he wanted to walk with us.

It was a beautiful fall day. Leaves just starting to change and the park they were in was beautiful. Funny I have lived in this area for 33 years and had heard this park mentioned several times but had never been there. I decided this was a place I would loved spending more time at.  The program to start the event was nice. One of the Seniors gave a talk on " Living with Alzheimer's" He and his wife have been married 62 years and he has been caring for her throughout her illness. I do not know how he ever did the talk he did.  There was not a dry eye in the crowd. He had to stop a few times himself to gain his composure. To hear some of the things he has and is still going through tore at my heart strings. I have known he and his wife for about 7 years now and they are two of the most caring and loving people I have ever had the privilege to know.

Seeing how Alzheimer's affects not only the person with it but the family and friends of the person really makes a person thankful for good health. As Bob said, Alzheimer's does not effect just the elderly but can effect the young, middle age, man or woman. It takes over your life. He stressed how important these three words are. " I Love You"  and he said make sure you make plenty of memories as some day memories will be all you have.

I thought I would share some of the pictures I took  while walking " Walk to End Alzheimer's"...

These are many of our Seniors from the Senior Center Walk Team. This was during the opening program.

                           Part of the crowd milling around before opening ceremony.

                         My son-in-law Frank and Hubby George.

                       Waiting at bridge to start the walk

First group to cross the bridge. We each had flowers to toss in the water in memory of those who have lost their fight to Alzheimer's.

                    A few of the flowers tossed over to the water.

      Crossing over one of the bridges. Beautiful area of the walk. Just  so peaceful.

We took our time as you can tell. We were in no hurry at all. And we did not even bring up the end. There were several behind us  enjoying the beauty of the park.

This was the first walk for our area and they are planning on making it an annual event. I was surprised at the end of the walk I felt better than I had in weeks. I must have needed the beauty and quietness of nature to revitalize me. And that night I slept better than I have in weeks.

I dedicate this "Walk to End Alzheimer's" and this  post in the memory of my Aunt Margaret who lost her battle with Alzheimer's last April. She will be forever loved and missed.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Crafting with Seniors

What a fun day Monday.We did a "Craft with Karan Day" at the Senior Center. We had 11 ladies that had signed up and can you believe we had 21 ladies show up. And we only had 15 grapevine wreaths so it was a quick trip to Hobby Lobby for more wreaths. We bought them out of the size we planned on using and had to go up to a larger one for some of the ladies. While on that HL trip we had another couple ladies come in to see if they could do a wreath. We decided we were going to have to limit the class and make sure they sign up in advanve so there are enough supplies bought.

Each lady did their own thing so each wreath had a totally different look to it.  Many of the ladies have never done  crafts and say they are not crafty at all but by gosh I can see they would make great crafters. Just got to convince them and give them some confidence.

                                                  Here are a few pictures I took to share.
The oldest of the ladies in early 80's that came to do a wreath. Her eyes were not too good and she was pretty shaky so she did let another help her. She would place things where she wanted them and we did the gluing etc. 

                                                           This is her finished wreath.

       This is  one of the ladies that says she had never done crafts. I thought her wreath turned out well.

This is another saying she is not crafty. I did suggest that she shorten her scarecrow so it did not stand so high.

                                                  I thought Patty did a great job on hers.

                                       These are several of the ladies showing off what they did.

What a fun day we had and I think they did a wonderful job . Each one did their own thing and I think that each one did well. Many live in Senior High Rise Apartments and will be proud to hang their wreaths on the door to their apartments.

Next month many have already signed up for our craft day. We are doing Halloween centerpieces for their tables. A nd one of the ladies has suggested we get together an extra day and do table decorations for the holidays for the Senior Center  tables. I think it is a great idea. Now to just find a time we can all do it.

                                                I hope you are all having a great week.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

May God Bless America

Let Us Remember.

"Two Thousand One, Nine Eleven"
Two thousand one, nine eleven
Four thousand-plus enter heaven.
A bearded man with stovepipe hat
Steps forward saying, "Let's sit and chat."
They settle down in seats of clouds
And a man named Martin shouts out proud,
"I have a dream!" And once he did,
The Newcomers said, "Your dream still lives."
Groups of soldiers in blue and gray
Others in khaki, and green then say
"We're from Bull Run, Yorktown, the Maine."
And the Newcomers said, "You died not in vain."
From a man on sticks one could hear
"The only thing we have to fear--"
And a Newcomer said, "We know the rest,
Trust us, sir, we've passed that test."
"Courage doesn't hide in caves
You can't bury freedom in a grave."
The Newcomers had heard this voice before
A Yankee twang from Hyannis shore.
A silence fell within the midst
And somehow a Newcomer knew that this
Meant time had come for her to say
What was in the hearts of the four thousand that day.
"Back on Earth, we wrote reports,
Watched our children play in sports
Worked our gardens, sang our songs,
Went to church, walked along.
We smiled and laughed, knew love and hate,
But unlike you, we were not great."
The tall man in the stovepipe hat
Stood and said, "Don't talk like that.
Look at your country, look and see--
You died for freedom, just like me."
Then before them appeared a scene
Of rubbled streets and twisted beams
Death, destruction, smoke, and dust
And people working because they must.
Hauling ash, lifting stones,
Knee-deep in hell, but not alone.
"Black man, White man, Brown man, Yellow man,
Side by side helping their fellow man!"
So said Martin, as he watched the scene.
Then: "Even from nightmares, can be born a dream."
And down below three firemen raised
The colors high in the ashen haze.
The soldiers above had seen it before--
On Iwo Jima in '44.
The man on sticks studied everything closely
Then shared his perceptions on what he saw mostly
"I see pain, I see tears,
I see sorrow--but I don't see fear.
"You left behind husbands and wives
Daughters and sons, and so many lives 
are suffering now because of this wrong.
But look very closely: You're not really gone.
All of those people, even those who've never met you
All of their lives, they'll never forget you
Don't you see what has happened?
Don't you see what you've done?
You've brought them together, together as one."
With that the man in the stovepipe hat said,
"Take my hand," and from there he led
Four thousand Newcomers on into heaven
On this day, two thousand one, nine eleven.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

A Long and Busy Month

Boy  it is nice to have the month of August over with. We have kept so busy tearing apart, painting, staining things, and adding new flooring to the kitchen. All this while George worked 5 days a week.  I thought you might like a tour of the new look.

We had years ago enlarged the kitchen and added several new cabinets to one wall in the kitchen.At the time we put down just some cheap tiles on the floor not knowing what we really wanted to do for flooring. We figured a few years down the line we could put in  a good last floor. Well that was about 8 years ago and I had been living for the last couple years with peeling, cracking tiles that just would not clean good any more.

This is what we started with

 We looked and looked for what we would like and could never agree as to what we wanted. What George wanted I did not want and what I wanted he did not want. While shopping one day at Menards we noticed they had a flooring sale which was pretty good. We found some swift lock type of ceramic tile looking flooring we both loved. Well guess what. They did not have enough for our kitchen and it was a discontinued item. Would you not know it when we find some we both agree on there is not enough and no way of getting more. So we left empty handed as far as having flooring. A few days later we decided to head back up there and we were determined to come to an agreement and come home with something for that horrible floor. Well after looking and looking we had narrowed the flooring down to two different looks. One a hardwood bamboo and one a swift lock that was almost a granite type look which I really liked. George thought it looked to dark though. So we decided on hard wood bamboo.

Getting it started was a job. When our home was build in the 60's nothing seemed to be squared. Once the first few pieces  were in it got a lot easier.  George got 1/4 of it done and came out and said. I am thinking of maybe moving the pantry cabinet over where the refrigerator is and the refrigerator where the that cabinet it what do you think? By then I am thinking oh no what else will he decide to do.
  My light switch is hidden behind the refrigerator with it this way.  And the dog dishes  have always been next to the refrigerator. Switching will open up the light switch was his excuse for doing this. So I agreed to moving the two around. Now I just need to get him to switch the door  of the refrigerator to open the other way. But I have to say stove, sink and refrigerator are now in the triangle they should be in to be efficient.

Well the floor is done and I am loving it. Sure made a big difference . We bought new cushions for the chairs and last week I asked my dad if I could have a few of moms linen table clothes being they no longer had an oblong table. I came home with three nice ones that I can use with nice place mats.

Here is the final look.

This is looking from the living room into the kitchen..

This is looking towards my computer and sewing room. 

This shows some of the teapot collect. Top cabinets here are the original ones in the kitchen which were a very dark brown, almost a black. I stripped, sanded and refinished them several years ago. Bottom cabinets are all new.

This shows my sink and the new window along with a lot more teapots in my collection.

The small space between the pantry cabinet and regular cabinet will have shelves added to make it look finished. I will have enough room there to add a few small teapots from my collection. Hanging next to the pantry cabinet is a picture I was given back years and years ago by a dear friend whom I took painting lessons from. . 

Today is a rainy dreary day so I have been baking. It seems great to be able to have it cool enough to turn on the oven. Oh how I miss baking in the summer. Even with air conditioning I just refuse to turn on the oven.

I am looking so forward to fall this year. I have been getting my fall decorations around and even talked George into a pretty new tablecloth, fall place mats, and new rugs for the fall months when we were shopping this past week end. Will get it all up and share my decorations  later with you. 

Now on to the next project . We have torn off the deck and will be rebuilding It is years old and even with treated wood we had some buckling of the wood and it was just not as sturdy as we would like.This is what it now looks like out my back door. 

 Also we are going to paint the guest bedroom. It is a green paneling and  a dark green at that. I am so ready for something different in there. And we will replace the carpet after painting. We are trading our king sized bed from there with our daughter for her queen size. Will be great having a bit more room in there. 

I have slowly been doing my fall cleaning. We had to have everything away by 3 feet from all the windows for them to install the new ones so I went into cleaning mode while doing it. Figured no time better than now. 

Well off to do some cookies. Got letter from  our grandson who is in the Marines. He said that if I could bake either 80 or 160 cookies that would be awesome. He wants for the whole platoon. Can hardly wait till Christmas to send baked goods and homemade candies to him. 

I hope everyone has a great week.