Friday, January 30, 2015


I hate a purse.  I dislike even more having to carry one.
  I'm sure any psychologist would tell you that I can blame that one on my grandmother.  She loved her purse (she called it her 'pocketbook') -- she kept her secrets and her whole life in her 'pocketbook'.  And, under no uncertain terms, she said that no one was to go near it or touch it.  If there had been a fire or a tornado (she lived in SE Kansas), her first priority would have been to grab that purse, I'm sure!
 Later on, she was one of those little old ladies in the nursing home that had to carry her purse EVERYWHERE.

I'm beyond where I need to carry an extra diaper, Cheerios, a pacifier, Legos, etc. in my purse; so something small will work. 
 This ugly thing has carried all of my stuff for a lot of years -- it is just a little bigger than a passport, and worked great traveling all over Europe a couple of times plus in my daily local travels.
But now---- a larger smart phone has entered my life.  It fits (barely) in my pocket, but it sure isn't comfortable.  So, I decided that because of the decaying condition and the ugliness of the old purse, and the need to carry the phone somewhere outside my pocket; I would shop for a new cross-body purse.  I have spent the last three months looking -- I don't want a fashion statement; I want function in black leather at the perfect size and preferably under $100. So far, no luck.

In the interim until I find the PERFECT purse, I have decided to make one to test out just what I need for size and function.   As usual, I have more time than money; so my goal is to keep the project cheap.
For fabric, I'm using a 100% wool gray skirt from the thrift store that I'm deconstructing and felting in hot water and a hot dryer.  And, then maybe for just a little hidden fashion statement, I'm lining it with some red plaid.  In a day or two, I should have it finished and will post on how this experiment turns out.

There have been some good posts on purses recently -- check out this one on Margo's Junkin Journal.  She covers a lot of thoughts I have about the use of a purse.

Do you have purse issues, or am I the only one ruined by a grandmother's purse attachment?????

Thursday, January 22, 2015


There was no school here on Martin Luther King day, so Wyatt came over to spend the day with his Papa Bob.  They went over to the church parking lot to try to get the bottle-rocket car they had built to travel for more than 10 feet by using vinegar and baking soda as fuel.  But, alas, no success again!  However, an engineer and an inquisitive kid are not deterred -- they are out in the garage again dreaming up something else.

My assignment ----- lunch!  Since Wyatt is growing outrageously fast and is always hungry, I try to fix something half-way healthy and filling when he is here.  On this day it is Baked Chimichangas.  I don't remember where I got the recipe originally, but it has been a family favorite for years.
Brown one pound of hamburger, drain and add:
2 tablespoons of salsa (homemade or purchased)
Salt and pepper to taste.
Cook and stir; then spoon some of the mixture on center of each flour tortilla.  Add grated cheese.
 Fold edge closest to you over filling; fold both sides toward center; roll tortilla.  Arrange on cookie sheet, seam side down.  Melt 1/4 cup butter and brush each tortilla with butter.
Wyatt came in to help with what he calls "Butter Painting".
 Bake at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes until hot, lightly browned, and slightly crisp.
Serve with more grated cheese, salsa, sour cream, lettuce, tomatoes, avocado, and black olives.

I may be fooling myself, but these have to be healthier than deep-fried chimichangas -- I do know it is easier and less mess to bake them.

I'm joining the following:
The Dedicated House for Anything Blue Friday
Nancherrow for Fridays Unfolded
Pieced Pastimes for Saturday Sparks
Smiling Sally for Blue Monday
Confessions of a Plate Addict for The Scoop Tuesday
Green Willow Pond for What We Accomplished Wednesday
Have a Daily Cup for Share Your Cup Thursday

Thursday, January 15, 2015


A post of randomness --
Image from Royal Gorge Bridge and Park Facebook page
The weather geniuses on local TV and on my smart phone tell me that we will have dry, sunshiny, and balmy (in the 60s) weather for the next six days.  We have had a rather long snap of cold, icy, snowy weather; so sunshine will be appreciated.  I'm encouraged that winter will return next week, however.  Guess I better take this opportunity to take my heavy coat to the cleaners!

Bob reminds me that it is two months until he and Wyatt plant the peas in the garden on St. Pat's Day.  That's a good thing as I only have about one cup of peas from last year's garden left in my freezer.  I'm saving those for the perfect chicken and biscuit casserole on a future, snowy evening.

After dropping my coat off at the cleaners today, I have the fun of picking up my favorite granddaughter, Caitlin, at the high school.  I love it when she needs a ride, and thinks of me.  As a busy senior, it is hard to fit in school work, a boyfriend, etc., etc., etc., and Grammy-time!  We still manage, however ---- and there is nothing better than to encapsulate a talkative teenager in a car, go to Sonic for something to drink, and get caught up on the news!
I'm going to miss her next year so much!!!!

You would think that after all of the Christmas goodies, I would be tired of sweets.  But, oh no, I think I'll make Turtle Cookie Bars this afternoon.  
Turtle Cookie Bars
I spied the recipe on The Shabby Creek Cottage blog, and now I can't stop thinking about them.

What's another calorie (or two---) when the sun is shining?

I'm joining the following:
The Charm of Home for Home Sweet Home Friday
French Country Cottage for Feathered Nest Friday
Smiling Sally for Blue Monday
My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia for Inspire Me Monday
A Stroll Thru Life for Inspire Me Tuesday
Our Home Away From Home for Tuesdays At Our Home
Ivy and Elephants for What's It Wednesday
Imparting Grace for Grace at Home Thursday
Have a Daily Cup for Share Your Cup Thursday

Tuesday, January 6, 2015


One of my goals in 2015 is to organize the 100-plus years of family pictures.  This seems to be my goal every year.  The problem is I get side-tracked, and never seem to accomplish completely the task.  I love finding the tie that binds our generations together, and get so involved that nothing gets really organized!  Here's an example of how my brain is all over the place when I am trying to organize those photos:

My great-grandparents loved to go camping in the mountains every chance they had.  
 I suppose camping in those days was not much different from living at home -- no indoor plumbing and cooking on a wood stove.  However, it was much cooler in the summer mountains than on the hot, arid Colorado plains.

My mother was raised by these grandparents, so she was well acquainted with camping.  She never complained about anything; but I don't think she was as enthused about it as my dad.  He was raised in a family of sheep and cattle ranchers, so he knew about camping-out as a part of rigorous labor.  But, he also enjoyed going camping as a social activity and showing off to friends and their families his considerable culinary skills on an open fire.
Fancy duds for social camping in the 1940s.  My mother on the left in both pictures; my dad on the right in first picture.
I reluctantly was taken along on these social excursions to the mountains.  On one particular trip, I must have been a really obnoxious 11-year-old complaining about the lack of comfort and facilities.  After a couple days of my complaining, Mother packed me up into the car and drove into Leadville, Colorado.  She secured me a room at the venerable Vendome Hotel; generously tipped the desk clerk; arranged for room service; gave me a sack of coins to play the pinball machine in the lobby; LEFT ME; and she went back to the camp site for the remaining two days.  I had a wonderful time alone and remember every detail of that corner room on the second floor.  Today she probably would be arrested for abandonment; but she taught me a very important survival skill ---- a nice hotel trumps a dirty camp site any day!!

  In 1967, Bob and I were planning a road trip to Saskatchewan, Canada.  He wanted to camp out in Prince Albert National Park.  I thought, "OK, I'm a married adult, I can compromise, I can do this."  Being the smart man that he is -- before we left home, he outfitted the back end of our Chevy Suburban with a mattress.  Since I was in the first trimester of a pregnancy, all I wanted to do was sleep anyway!  
Don't we look like we're having fun?  I hope I didn't complain too much, but that is the only time he has suggested we go camping out in the wild in the 56 years of our marriage.

BUT, we sure have stayed at a bunch of nice hotels over the years.  Have you ever stayed at the Broadmoor Hotel in Colorado Springs or the Brown Palace Hotel in Denver?  Now, that's my idea of mountain camping!

I'm joining the following:
Coastal Charm for Show and Share Tuesday
Kathe With An E for You're Gonna Love It Tuesday
A Southern Daydreamer for Outdoor Wednesday
Have a Daily Cup for Share Your Cup Thursday
Be Different Act Normal for Show and Tell Saturdays

Friday, January 2, 2015



Years ago, we stopped buying each other gifts on special occasions.  We find more joy in buying together something special.  Our birthdays are in November and December, so in some years we splurge on a three-in-one gift.

This year we bought a new/old hand-knotted wool rug.
This year I suppose it was more of a present for me than Bob, as I have had my eye on it in a local antique store forever!    
We've lived with it for almost two months now, and are thrilled with the way it brightens up our living room.  The colors are luscious!

I'm joining the following:
Pieced Pastimes for Saturday Sparks
Be Different Act Normal for Show and Tell Saturdays
Smiling Sally for Blue Monday
Between Naps on the Porch for Metamorphosis Monday
Coastal Charm for Tuesday Show and Share
A Stroll Thru Life for Inspire Me Tuesday
Ivy and Elephants for What's It Wednesday
Have a Daily Cup for Share Your Cup Thursday
The Charm of Home for Home Sweet Home Friday