There's no place like home.

There's no place like home.
Home is where my husband and I reside; wherever that may be.

Monday, December 29, 2014

Hints, tidbits, and a bit of a look inside. 29 December 2014

Outside my window...it is cloudy, drizzly, and nasty.  It is one of those, "I want to be a baby and curl up and sleep" kind of days.  Since that is irresponsible I have opted to clean the house and do three loads of laundry. 

The best gifts given at any time of the year are the thoughtful ones and the unexpected ones. I ordinarily don't designate anything as the best or my favorite since I love all the givers of all gifts and the love that is behind the giving.  But two stand out for me this year.  The roses that my husband brought home for me sing in my heart and make me smile because he rarely buys me gifts.  


The blanket that Kim and Jason holds a special place as well.  Kim and I started out in a rocky place and my heart had trouble opening to her.  Her special motherhood and the openness of the gift of her children to me has been a bond that gets stronger every day.


I am thinking...about the wonder of having a grown child visit for the holidays.  About the special dance that must be choreographed so that a mother can mother and still let her son be a man in his own right.  

I am thankful....for the blessing of sons who love and are patient with their mother.  

I am reading...the last few chapters of St. Faustina's diary so that I can dive into the pile of new reads that were part of my Christmas blessings this year.

Creatively speaking...the workshop will be set up and open for business tomorrow.  My dear brother, Matthew has constructed a website for me and I am gearing up to take more orders and swing into business again.

From the kitchen...there are still plenty of leftovers to nourish us for today and tomorrow so can ease into the whole normal routine thing.



A few plans for the rest of the week....say good bye to Matthew tomorrow before he heads back to NC.  That will be some sadness for me but also a certain contentment knowing that he had a happy Christmas holiday.  He made new friends, had some good times, and is returning rested and refreshed to begin a new year of learning and serving.. 



Monday, December 22, 2014

Hints, tidbits, and a little look inside. 22 December 2014

Outside my window...it is raining, brown and not at all Christmas-y. Inside, however, this house is full of the scents, sounds, and sights of the season.  In answer to the question, "Isn't it a nice break to not have to do all the cooking, baking, and other prep that you always did for Christmas when the kids were home?" My answer is "Never going to happen! No break until they take me out of wherever I am feet first!"


And so the cordial is made, bottled and has been tasted and declared perfect.  To quote Bob Cratchet, "Punch is a Cratchet speciality!"  I have already gifted others with this taste of the season.

Though they haven't burned down as far as in the past we have kept up the Advent tradition. Tomorrow I will replace the colored candles with white, refresh the greens and add a sprig of red or two. I have discovered that the anticipation of the birth of Christ is enhanced when it is coupled with waiting for a grown child to visit.

I am thinking....about all the things the kids and I did together in the past to get ready for the birth of Christ.  Cleaning the house, making gifts for the Giving tree, sorting and donating toys for Share a Caring Christmas, baking cookies, singing songs, and decorating the house.  Evenings spent watching Christmas specials, with candlelight and hot chocolate warm my heart.

I am thankful...for traditions, both old and new that knit together the generations and carry forward reasons for celebration and togetherness.


I am thankful for food that not only nourishes the body but the heart as well.  Across hundreds of miles and many families my father's nut roll recipe is already continuing its job of cementing the generations of Pelicanos near and far together in their bonds.

I am reading...the Diary of Saint Faustina and I am using one of my new bookmarks made for me by Miss Grace Collins.  Why is this thing of such great importance to me?  Each time I open my book I recite prayers to Our Lady of the Seven Sorrows for both myself, Miss Grace, and her family.  It reminds me of the extended family that I enjoy in my Catholic faith.

Creatively speaking...my workshop has literally been packed up and put away for the next few weeks.  Although I have already accepted a few orders they have distant deadlines so I fully intend to spend the time enjoying Matthew's visit and the celebration of the Christmas season.

Spiritually...my heart is ready for the birth of the Christ child and I look forward to the celebration of Christmas.  The glorious music, the solemnity of the mass, and the majesty of the altar and the decorations is the best way that I know to kick off the season.

From the kitchen...I am fully stocked and ready to wow Doug and Matthew with the culinary heart's delight.  Actually I will just cook and let the two of them eat at will.

A few plans for the rest of the week...do what Catholics do best when it comes to throwing their Savior a birthday party...eat, drink and be merry!

Here is a picture thought that I am sharing with you...I came home from mass yesterday to find that my wonderful man had fully decorated the whole house for Christmas. There was soft music playing, the blinds were drawn so we didn't have to see the rain, and I could smell hot coffee in the kitchen just waiting for me.  What a loving man I married.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Hints, tidbits, and a little look inside 8 December 2014

Outside my window...the mourning doves are vying with the jays and cardinals for their daily repast while a stiff breeze tries to blow all of them over the ridge onto the neighbor's lawn.  The weathermen are calling for a cool day here and lots of clouds.  I suppose that is appropriate since it is December.  I don't know whether to be confused or amused. Last week we had days in the 70's with so much sunshine  that the only thing summery that was missing were the leaves.  Today is feels and looks more like a late fall day in Upstate New York with the slight bite of approaching winter in the air.

 I had a message from Adam this morning, did I return his copy of "It's A Wonderful Life."  I am sure I did but I searched high and low and couldn't find it anywhere.  That movie is a special one for me.  At the lowest part of my life my husband paraphrased this quote from the movie to me.  He stopped my self-destruction by his love and devotion and hasn't stopped loving me since.  I am not a big "movie impacting life" fan but I am a sucker for a good quote any day.


Of course there are still days when this guy dominates my psyche, but hey we can't be George Bailey all the time. (actually my husband just about is)

I am thinking...about family far and near and how true the phrase "the more things change the more they stay the same" is.  One of my granddaughter's locked her sister in the dog kennel this weekend.  It wasn't malicious by any means. I am certain there isn't a malicious bone in the child's body. But I sure would have liked to have some insight into the imp that put the thought into her head.  Her father and uncles used to engage in the same kind of deviltry when they were young.  Again, no malice was intended.  They were acting on imagination and the capriciousness of childhood.  My hat is off to the girl's mother though. She has a patience and level of love and tolerance that I wish I had had at that stage of the game.

I am thankful...for the love and devotion of all my kids for each other.  The regard that they exhibit for each other is a balm to the heart of this mother.

I am sure that they love each other at least this much!!!! 

I am reading...not a thing currently. I finished up the book about confession and am taking a hiatus from reading so I can meet some deadlines and wrap up my pending work.

Creatively speaking...Santa's workshop is in full swing now that the commission work is wrapping up.  Today I sew buttons, make buttonholes, and do other bothersome finish work and then it is on to the things that this grandma has to complete for her little chicks.

Spiritually speaking...today is the Feast of the Immaculate Conception.  Nine months from now we will commemorate the birth of the Mother of God.  Today she is conceived in her mother's womb without the stain of original sin in order that she may be untainted and without blemish and worthy to house The Word Made Flesh.

From the kitchen...I think a celebratory meal is in order.  For my husband there will be bacon double cheese burgers with all the trimmings.  For myself there will be a high protein shake with raspberries. and my mother will choose not to enjoy here BLT.


On today's schedule....I will be attending noon mass to celebrate the Feast.  This is me whenever I get to go to a weekday mass.  Hello, Blessed Sacrament, here I am!!!!!

A few plans for the rest of the week...finish wrapping and shipping packages, keep trying to conquer Mount Washmore, finish small jobs and sundries so that I can begin to reduce the pile of UFOs in the garage, and maybe get some cleaning done around here.


Here is a picture thought that I am sharing with you...family, and friends are what it is all about.  I am not just referring to Christmas and I'm not talking about when you get to be together.  I mean life and salvation.  Every day, day to day, day in and day out if you don't have selfless love and devotion to family and friends you cannot show the love and selfless devotion that God has for you to any one else.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Hints, tidbits, and a little look inside. 2 December 2014

Outside my window...the moon is making its plunge back behind the earth to  spend the day and the sun's rays are just beginning to streak the sky with shades of gold and red.  I doubt I shall ever get over the weather around here.  Thursday, Friday, and Saturday we awoke to everything glittering with frost and air that snapped and tingled with the chill of it.  Sunday and yesterday we had temperatures in the 70's.  The light was so bright and clear that it felt as if you could see forever.  
 Sunday I took a long walk and discovered this beauty and hidden place not too far from here.  I have now found my new walking place that is conveniently close by and full of surprises that are just waiting for me to unearth them.
 I am thinking...about changes, conscious changes and changes that come upon you without you really knowing that they have.

I am thankful...for a husband who changes out the alternator in a car without giving it a second thought.  I am thankful for a brother who helps diagnose the pesky problem.

I am still reading...The 7 Secrets of Confession.  This book has been full of moments of revelation, self-reflection, and resolution.

In the creativity department...the work room was quiet over Thanksgiving.  Matthew came to visit and I was loathe to spend time sewing when I could spend time with him in conversation.  Now, though, it is nose to grindstone, back on the treadmill, crack the whip time.  I have a couple of orders to finish and ship today.  Yesterday I picked up two more bag orders and a couple of aprons.  I also have to put the finishing touches on my gift for the giving tree at church.

 Spiritually speaking...I have found a wonderful priest and confessor at a church not too awfully far from here.  He has lined me up with an order of Poor Clare's as well who are giving me much needed spiritual direction.  This path behind the church is the start of the outdoor rosary that I love visiting when I go to see father.  How refreshing that in this area of mega churches and very busy parishes I have finally found one that is a bit like home.

From the kitchen...there will be leftovers on the menu.  Last night I made meatloaf, broccoli, and baked potatoes for supper.  Thankfully there is plenty left so that I don't have to concern myself in the kitchen.  After actually cleaning the house yesterday (yep I really did a good job for a change) and conquering mount washmore (6 loads worth!) I don't feel too guilty about indulging my creativity.

A few plans for the rest of the week...finish and ship all the pending work and slip in some of my own projects along the way.  One week from today is my husband's 62nd birthday.  I am hoping to line up a grandma sitter and take him out on the town to celebrate.  The best day of my life happened nine years before I was even born on the day that God sent this man into the world.

Here is a picture thought that I am sharing with you...
I had camera issues on Thanksgiving day and this is about the only pic that came out.  Matthew and his "twin" cousin Joseph.  What a blessing to have the family that God gifted me with.