Sunday, February 22, 2015

I'm Back Again

Hello Everyone!

     I am back after a rather long period of time, and I can't really tell you why!  I guess I just needed a break, and to be honest, the holidays were not that great for me this year.  Oh, I sent out gifts for the grandkids and family back East, but i didn't do much more.  I don't know why,  I just couldn't get into it this year, and that is VERY unusual for me.  I didn't knit or crochet much, either, which is again unusual.  But I have gotten back to that somewhat.

     Right now, the oranges on our trees are plenty, so I have to make orange juice and get it into the freezer.  I add grapefruit juice to it also,  as I have lots of those, also.

Also, making an apple pie (I have a craving),  and chicken noodle soup!  What can I say, I was in the mood for cooking.   It is  a mood for me that I am in a lot.  Cooking mood.  And I like it.  I'm basically a homebody.  Anyway, it'll be good to get a stock of orange juice built up, too.  If I can get enough, it'll last a few months.   And it is so nice to have our own juice from our own oranges.  What a difference in taste!  

Also made, around Valentine's  Day,  old fashioned Golumbkies.  Or stuffed cabbage,  as it is better known.  

And some cupcakes, too!  The guys loved them.  Of course, so did I.  

So that's what I have been up to.  How 'bout you??  

See you ..........Later, but not so much later, tho!   XXOO. JO

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Sunday Again

Hello All!

Wouldn't you think that, as I am retired, a Sunday wouldn't be much different than any other day of the week.  But it is, for me.  Maybe because I have made it that way, in the Fall anyway.   For one thing,  football is back, and Sundays are for football.  We  rarely go anywhere on a Sunday in the Fall.  Because, besides football, I do a lot of cooking on Sundays, I like to curl up and crochet, and we like to eat whatever it is I may have cooked.

Soooo,  I get up in the morning, make a nice pot of tea,  fix one of my favorite breakfasts, and curl up on my little red love seat.  And so, my Sunday starts.   Hubby sleeps late, so I spend the morning cooking, or relaxing, or crocheting while watching NFL Countdown on ESPN.   I enjoy learning about the players and plays of football.  I' m no expert, tho.  Don't want to be.  I just want to enjoy it.

So, what shall I cook today?  We have some leftovers to finish up.  You know how that is.  I made potato and leek soup a few days ago, and then spaghetti, so we must eat that up.  But I think I will make some chocolate chip cookies, and apple turnovers.  So just desserts today, I guess.  Hubby is craving his goodies.  He loves goodies.

Started a new cowl for granddaughter E., and STILL haven't finished the purple afghan for granddaughter A.   I think some of you can relate to that.  And, I have noticed a few other projects I still haven't finished. I need to get going.  Just haven't had the ambition to get things finished.  But I am inspired by other bloggers who go thru the same thing,  but eventually get things done. 

Finally, I must show you my kitties.  They are getting so big!  
They are sooooooo cute and I have had so much fun with them.  They are a blessing!!!   Bo has found a new place to relax and sleep.

He is one big kitty!  And they have such different personalities that makes for unending enjoyment.  Love them.  

Lastly, I am missing New England, and spend a bit of time wishing I was there to drive thru the Berkshires, or Vermont, and see the colors, which are pretty much finished by now, but nonetheless, my memories of Fall in New England are never far from my mind.  
So beautiful.  Words cannot describe.  

Well, see you another time, which will be .......... Later................JO

Wednesday, November 12, 2014


Hello All!

I can't sleep tonite, and I am lying here with so much going thru my head.  I don't know what it is, but Autumn always makes me melancholy, remembering faces, moments, Autumn colors in Vermont, old ways, country roads, etc.  I made applesauce tonite, and it reminded me of when my Mom did the same, and when I made it with my children.   With Thanksgiving coming upon us, I am remembering Thanksgivings with my brothers and sisters and parents in the big old house in Massachusetts.

We were ten children, Mom & Dad, and sometimes my Grandmother, or an Aunt and her son.  I don't remember times when all ten of us children were there at the same time.  My memory starts more when the older boys were in the Air Force and away most of the time, and most of the younger ones at home.  I don't know how my Mother did it all, taking care of so many, cooking and doing laundry for so many.   But she did, and she did it with love for us children, especially.

It was a very large house, with many bedrooms, a large kitchen and living room, a fireplace, and two large porches, which my Father added long after we bought the house.  I loved the kitchen most of all.  Dad had made a table out of a door, as we needed something very large to accommodate everyone at meals.   And I remember everyone at that table, especially at holidays, with the boys teasing one another, and we girls helping Mom put the food out.  I remember especially the pies!  Mom made so many pies!  And all kinds.  Apple, of course, several, pumpkin, mince meat, apricot, berry,  and of course, they didn't last long.  Dad loved pie, as did all of us.  I learned to make pies from my Mom, of course, but could never seem to duplicate hers.  I think it was the love she put in.

I remember summers there.  The huge garden Dad and the boys made.  The tomatoes, cukes, radishes, corn, green beans, peas, and everything else you can think of.  We all had to work in the

garden, but oh, the wonderful tastes that came out of it.   Corn, for this family, was several dozen at
one time.  And you had to eat it fast, if you wanted to have more than one.  I could never keep up with the boys.  Corn has never tasted the same as in those days, with salt and pepper, and butter dripping off.   Later, a bunch of us would pile in the old station wagon,  (the kind with the wood on the sides), and we would go to get ice cream.  I didn't like ice cream all that much, so I would want a hot dog!  My favorite!  We didn't have bikes, but we could walk anywhere in the country, so we would go to the pond, or into the woods, or sit on the log that Dad felled across the brook.  Or just play on the lawn, under the big oak trees.   And then, after a long Winter, in the Spring, we would make maple syrup right out in the back yard, over a big fire, from the maple trees we had.

So many memories.   They are wonderful to think about.  But it is 3:00 a.m., and I should get some sleep.   The memories have given me contentment, so I should be able to nod off soon.

See you..........Later........ JO

Afterthought:  Finally fell asleep around four a.m., and arose at ten-thirty, and am sitting reading an old Gladys Taber favorite, (Stillmeadow Seasons), and found this sentence.

"How many journeys the mind makes -- and how wonderful that it may do so!"     Gladys Taber

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Beef Stew

Hello All!

And welcome to all of my followers out there.  It is so nice to see all of your blogs, and happenings too!  You are so creative and fun, and lovely.  I am so glad I found this blogging world, because I get to see so much that I would otherwise not have access to.  Others' crocheting, cooking, decorating and nature!  I love all the photos of nature that I see from different parts of the country and of the world!

As I may have intimated in previous posts, I am a caregiver for my husband, and so I don't get out very far from home, or where I would see more of nature.  No garden, as I just don't have the time or patience for it anymore, but I miss it terribly.  It was such a wonderful way to rid myself of stress, and to get so much satisfaction from.  Now, I must content myself with an occasional ride out into the country, and using crochet and blogging as my outlets.   Once in awhile I talk hubby into a long ride for the day, and I enjoy it to the hilt!!

Anyway, I spend a lot of my time cooking, as I still can enjoy that, and I get so many ideas from blogs, and Pinterest.   Yesterday, I used a recipe from The Pioneer Woman blog.  Beef stew.  I haven't made stew in a long time.  My Mom used to make stew a lot when I was a child, as I was one of ten, and stew went a long ways to feed that bunch!  But she didn't use much for herbs and spices, so I like to try new recipes.  This one was a keeper.   We had my brother over to watch the football game, and he loved the stew.   And the homemade biscuits, also from Ree's site.  You can find her recipes on her Pinterest board, too.  

Check out my Pinterest boards, if you like,  as I think I have some interesting things there.  But very homey, as that is Me!   I like the home crafts of cooking, homemaking, and making things yourself.  I am an old-fashioned girl, I guess.   So here is my beef stew.
You would think that at 70 years young, I would have perfected my recipes, but no, I haven't.  I am always finding new ways to do things.  Aren't we all?  That is the way of things.  That is progress.  That is how we grow.  I love it.  I love the old ways, but I like add new ways to the old ways, if that makes sense!  

In other news, my grandson has a new job, which I pray will lead him to find new things, too!  Good luck, my sweet.  

I am already thinking out and planning Thanksgiving, my favorite holiday of the year, which we will, as usual, host.  

So, I am busy as I can be and I will talk to you all...............Later........JO

Thursday, October 9, 2014


I was reminiscing this morning.  Even tho it rained overnight, it warmed up and the sun came out during the day.  And my love of Fall carries through anyway.  The air is really changing, as are the temperatures, and it was bringing fond memories of our life in Vermont

Vermont is a special place to live.  Most of it is pure country;  farms, land, barns, pies, trees, cows, horses,  and GREEN!  It is The Green Mountain State, after all.  I am an old fashioned girl, and I love the old fashioned things.  We went to Pond Parties, where everyone would come , sit around the pond, with a huge bonfire going, someone strumming a guitar, with many different kinds of food, and people.  It was such fun, but of course, we were much younger then.  I was under forty when we lived  there.  What would it be like to be forty again.  There was so much I could do that I cannot do now.   I had so much more energy.  I used to bring in wood for the wood stove, milk a cow, make butter, and buttermilk, clean out stalls in the barn, shovel snow, run errands, etc., etc.  like most of you younger bloggers do now.  I read your blogs and I am amazed at how much you do.  Teaching crafts, homeschooling,  and all the usual household chores, plus, plus, plus.  I wish I had some of that energy back, but at the same time I am proud of what I do get done for my age, (70),  and still find time to do things for myself.  I am a caregiver for my husband, and because he is disabled all of the household chores are mine to take care of.  My grandson does help when he can (he vacuumed the house, and mopped the bare floors today),  but I get very tired.

Getting back to life in Vermont.  The nearest town for major shopping, drs., dentists, etc., was about 22 miles away, and I loved that ride every time I took it.  My mother-in-law lived with us, and she usually went to town with me, and we would take in lunch, or a coffee and pie somewhere, and do our shopping etc., then  head back home.   She always saw something new on the ride, that she would point out to me.  We saw the ski mountains, the farms, country stores, ponds, and  the people.  Sometimes, we would stop and say hello to a neighbor, or the school bus driver, or a farmer.  It was a
wonderful life.  We didn't even mind the snow.  We had two dogs, and I would take them up into the woods for walks while the kids were in school.   My husband worked as a tool designer for a
company on the border of Canada, and when he got home, he was right outside chopping wood, or working in the barn until dinner was ready.  We weren't full fledged farmers, but we did what we could, and enjoyed it.

And Fall in Vermont was the BEST SEASON!   We would go every weekend for a picnic on the side of the road somewhere, or just for a ride to see the colors, or to visit with neighbors.   It was our favorite time of the year.  Wood smoke, changing colors,  wild animals, such as deer, fox, coy dogs, (half dog, half coyote).   I miss those days, but I am so grateful that I had them.  It was the kind of life   we wanted to live, and we were so fortunate and blessed to be able to do it for six years.

Now I enjoy Fall here in Arizona, which is very different, but nonetheless the best season of all.

Enjoy your Fall as much as you can, whether you are here in Arizona, or in the Northeast, where snow will come before you know it,  or wherever you are.  

Thanks for visiting, and I will talk to you........Later........JO

Monday, October 6, 2014

What Is It??!

Hello all!

Is it something in the air?  The weather is changing, and so the air is changing, and I respond to it!  I don't know what it is, but the air smells so fresh and feels so cool, (mornings and evenings),  but there  must be something else.   When Fall arrives, I want to get up earlier, to enjoy the cool air, and sit out on my patio, read or crochet, listen to music, etc.  but it is like there is something subliminal in the air, urging me on, putting ideas into my head.  I can't seem to fit enough into the day.  No other season does that to me, not even Spring.  I love Fall even more here in Arizona, because we are coming off a long, hot summer, and the change is so welcome!!

So can you tell I LOVE LOVE LOVE Fall???!   Yesterday was Sunday, so there were corn cakes for breakfast,  oatmeal raisin cookies for hubby, football all day, and at night, crocheting, and meatloaf, mashed potatoes, applesauce, and collard greens for supper.   Gooooood day!
I am making a couple of  pumpkin garlands for gifts for my daughter and daughter in law, from a pattern on Pinterest, from  I love this pattern.  And I need to make one for myself, too, as I gave away all the ones I made last year.  
And Bo is enjoying my yarn projects, too!  He and Johnny have grown so much, and have found new spots to relax, sleep, and watch out the window.  They are such a joy!  

Now, I need to talk my hubby into going for another long drive up North to see how much color there is.    Maybe I can take a few photos so I can savor the scenes I see.   Wish me luck.  


Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Is Fall On The Way??

Hello All!

Yes, Fall must be on the way, as I notice I want to cook more, clean more, and definitely want to start crocheting more.  I don't do as much of any of those in the summer months, cause it is is just too darn hot!    But yes, this morning I decided to make a berry pie, spaghetti and meatballs, and strawberry banana muffins.   The muffins just came out of the oven, mmmmmmm!, and the pie just went in.  Now I am pooped for awhile (I don't have a lot of stamina anymore), so I will write a little blog.

Anyway, I will also have some iced tea and a muffin in a few minutes.   In the meantime, I will look up some more recipes, do some wash, and start putting together my grandaughter's afghan, finally!   I am not even sure I have enough squares for it yet, so I will lay it out, and see where I am at, since I haven't touched it in months.

So, a very exciting thing happened to me on my visit to Massachusetts in August to see my daughter. It was my birthday in August, while I was there, and she had planned a surprise birthday party for me!  Now, you may not believe it, but I don't remember ever having a birthday party in my life, so this was a very big thing to me!  And I was surprised!!  I don't know how she got it done, but she did.  She had a lot of help from many of my friends, and family.  It was a lovely Sunday afternoon, and I thought we were just going for a cookout at a very good friend's home.  I know it was one of the best days of my life, as I love getting together with people, and I have so little time when I am there.  You know how it is, you want to see everyone, but there just isn't enough time.  But on this day, so many people that I love were there.  About 30, I guess.  Here are a couple of photos.


 beautiful daughter.


 best friends. 

Little sister



 beautiful cake.  
Oh, what a day!  My 70th birthday, celebrated well!  It was a day I will remember fondly, forever.  

was fun, telling
all about my special day.  But back to today.   These are the strawberry banana muffins I made this morning.   And here is my recipe.  Simple.  

you can read that, as I am too lazy to write it out.  Thanks for understanding.  xxoo

 I used two ripe bananas, small, this morning, as that is what I had.  I just added a little more cream, and bis quick.  But I have made them many times, and they are soft, and delicious.  Actually, also, I added about a half teaspoon strawberry preserves right onto the top, and then baked.  Made it all the more better!!!  

And here is a look at my kitties today.  They are getting big, especially Bo, the black one.  I don't what it is, but he has grown twice as fast as Johnny.  I enjoy them so much, even tho they are mischievous sometimes.  
Well, I had better get back to work, as I still have a few things to do before I have to start my spaghetti and meatballs.  
See you ............  Later...........JO