Saturday, December 26, 2009


We knew in our hearts that this young lady
would someday be part of our family.
Now it is official, he has proposed. We are overjoyed.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

the moment in the middle

Hold your breath.
Here it is.
Christmas Eve.
My favorite time of the Christmas Season.
The perfect moment between all the preparations and all of the celebrations.

All is done yet all is yet to come . . .

"It was a moment of perfection he would probably not find again this year, and he sat without moving, almost without breathing. There was the upside of a garden, when one was digging and planting, heaving and hauling, and then the downside, when it was all weeding and grooming and watering and sweating. One had to be fleet to catch the moment in the middle, the mountaintop, when perfection was as brief as the visit of a butterfly to an outstretched palm.

From the book : Out to Cannan
by: Jan Karon

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

buffalo chex mix

A new tradition has been started with the discovery of this recipe . . .

Buffalo Chex Mix Recipe

4 cups Rice Chex® cereal
4 cups Corn Chex® cereal
2 cups Parmesan-flavored tiny fish-shaped crackers
2 cups mini pretzels
1 cup nuts
6 tablespoons butter or margarine
2 tablespoons Chicken Wing Sauce
2 teaspoons seasoned salt 2 teaspoons celery seed

In large microwavable bowl (or brown paper grocery bag cut to fit in microwave), mix cereals, nuts, pretzels and fish crackers; set aside. In small microwavable bowl, microwave butter uncovered on High about 40 seconds or until melted. Stir in seasonings. Pour over cereal mixture; stir (shake) until evenly coated.

Microwave Directions: Microwave uncovered on High 5 to 6 minutes, thoroughly stirring/ shaking every 2 minutes. If using a paper bag, put the cut off top piece under the bag to absorb grease. Spread on newspaper to cool. Store in airtight container.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

from me to you

Monday, December 14, 2009

family scrabble

Saturday, December 12, 2009

miniature tree

What a fun surprise I had on Friday to receive this little tree as a gift. It is from a new teacher in my school that I have worked with the past 10 weeks. She made it herself from pine boughs and mini ornaments. She is lovely young lady and so creative. I LOVE it. Thank you Sarah.

Thursday, December 10, 2009



This is my child with mission in her heart and an amazing depth of spirit. Her mission work has taken her to Taylor University IN, Seattle WA, Vancouver BC, Terrace BC, New York City and now Phnom Penh, Cambodia. I am truly awed by this child. She is everything I strive to be. Ever since she was a little girl she has been the social director of our family and her friends. This remain the same in her adult life. She keeps things organized and makes sure that all her friends are entertained and well cared for. She understands the joy of ordinary moments. She is an amazing, intelligent, thoughtful woman. When she, my first-born, joined our family my life changed forever. Being a mom to her and her brothers has enriched me more than they can ever imagine.
I am so honored to be her mother.
I am so proud to be her mother.
I am so grateful to be her mother.
Now she is out there in the world - I pray for her to have a joyful life. I hope she knows how much she is loved.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

closet move in

I know that January is the traditional month to "get organized" but my retired husband and I spent this Saturday turning an old storeroom into a new closet. This of course is after he has spent many weeks relocating the stored stuff, painting and having carpet installed. And now . . . add clothes!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

hastings hats

Below is a very easy crochet pattern for a simple winter hat. I keep a basket of these handy and am delighted when friends and family take one. They are particularly popular with my children and my nephews.

Hastings Crocheted Hat
4 ply yarn medium weight yarn
as many colors as desired
crochet hook size J or I (for smaller hat)

Center of crown : ch 4 and join into ring with a slip st.
Rnd 1 Ch 1, 6 sc in ring. Slip st to join to 1st sc. (Mark for beg of round.)
Rnd 2 Ch 1, 2 sc (go through the top 2 loops) in each sc around.
Join with slip stitch. (12st)
Rnd 3 Ch 1, (1 sc in next sc, 2 in next) repeat around. Join. (18st)
Rnd 4 Ch 1, (1 sc in next 2 sc, 2 in next) repeat around. Join. (24st)
Rnd 5 Ch 1, (1 sc in next 3 sc, 2 in next) repeat around. Join. (30st)
Rnd 6 Ch 1, (1 sc in next 4 sc, 2 in next) repeat around. Join. (36st)
Rnd 7 Ch 1, (1 sc in next 5 sc, 2 in next) repeat around. Join. (42sts)
Rnd 8 Ch 1, (1 sc in next 6 sc, 2 in next) repeat around. Join. (48sts)
Rnd 9 Ch 1, (1 sc in next 7 sc, 2 in next) repeat around. Join. (54sts)
Rnd 10 Ch 1, (1 sc in next 8 sc, 2 in next) repeat around. Join. (60sts)
Rnd 11 Ch 1, (1 sc in next 9 sc, 2 in next) repeat around. Join. (66sts)

If you don’t yet have 66 stitches, increase evenly spaced around hat until you have 66 stitches

Any time you want to add a new color: Join color new color with a slipstitch at the beginning of any row.

Continue until length of hat from top to rim measures 7 inches (usually about 29-30 rows) or your preference

Finish off (Weave in and tie off all loose ends)

Abbreviations beg = begin(ning) ch = chain rep = repeat(s) rnd(s) = round(s)sc = single crochetst(s) = stitch(es)

Adding a Brim

If you want to a add a Brim (can be worn down or folded up):
Inc Rnd in 28th row (1 sc in each of next 4 sc, 2 sc in next sc) Repeat 10 times - 73 sts. Work even until brim measures your desired width. Fasten off.

Adding Ear Flaps

If you want to add Ear flaps:

Mark center front of hat with a scrap of yarn.
Count 11 stitches from center on left side of hat. With outside of hat facing you attach yarn with a slip stitch to this loop.
Row 1 Ch 1, sc in next 14 stitches. Ch 1, turn
Row 2 Sc in same stitch as ch 1 and in next 14 stitches. Ch 1, turn
Row 3 Skip first stitch, sc in each of next 13 stitches. (this decreases row by 1) Ch 1, turn
Row 4 Skip first stitch, sc in each of next 12 stitches. (this decreases row by 1) Ch 1, turn
Row 5 Skip first stitch, sc in each of next 11 stitches. (this decreases row by 1) Ch 1, turn
Repeat until you have 2 stitches left. Fasten off.

Add ear flap to other side by repeating the above rows on the right side. Make beginning and ending of ear flaps match on each side.

Join yarn to back of hat.
Sc around hat to the tip of the first ear flap.
Chain 36 stitches to make tie. Sc in second chain from hook and sc in each chain until you get back to the ear flap.
Sc in tip of ear flap and continue around until you get to the tip of second ear flap.
Chain 36 stitches to make second tie. Sc in second chain from hook and sc in each chain until you get back to the ear flap.
Continue around hat until the edging meets at the back of the hat. Finish off.
Weave in and tie off all loose ends .

Thursday, November 26, 2009


Thanksgiving is the holiday of peace, the celebration of work and the simple life... a true folk-festival that speaks the poetry of the turn of the seasons, the beauty of seedtime and harvest, the ripe product of the year - and the deep, deep connection of all these things with God. -- Ray Stannard Baker (David Grayson)

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


When I turned 50 my cousin Renee sent me this poem.
Ever since I have shared it with my friends as they turned 50.
Now . . . it is her turn.
Happy Birthday Renee

What then? Shall we sit idly down and say
The night hath come; it is no longer day?
The night hath not yet come; we are not quite
Cut off from labor by the failing light;
Something remains for us to do or dare;
Even the oldest tree some fruit may bear;

But other something, would we but begin;
For age is opportunity no less
Than youth itself, though in another dress,
And as the evening twilight fades away
The sky is filled with stars, invisible by day.

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882) from: Morituii Salutamus

Saturday, October 31, 2009


Now that my children are grown and gone
I have to resort to dressing up my dolls.Here is Alex fitting right in with the Patty Playpals.

Monday, October 12, 2009

comfort of autumn

It is always hard to bid summer farewell. The slower pace, the morning porch sits, the evening sunset watch on the deck, the afternoon float in the pool with a good book, Wine-on-Wednesday gatherings in friend’s yards, fresh tomatoes (the one and only food we grow), taking a day trip on a moment's notice, visits to touch base with the children (Oswego, Towson, Philadelphia, Cambodia?-a bit too far for a visit so phone calls connect us). It was a good run although a bit cooler this year and we are ready for the comfort of autumn’s familiar traditions.
Wouldn’t you just love to sit a bit in this chair, clear you head,
listen to the sounds of nature, and ready yourself for the next season?!

photo from

Saturday, October 3, 2009

glen iris inn

Our daughter and son-in-law recently treated us to an overnight get-away at the Glen Iris Inn in Letchworth State Park. It was a welcome and relaxing fall excursion back to the place where we spent our wedding night thirty years ago. Thank you Amanda and Daniel!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009



Happy birthday to my oldest son, the first to find his way in the grown-up world. He was putting together 100 piece puzzles at the age of 3 so it is no surprise to me that he has become an engineer. His smiles helped me stay afloat and his tears broke my heart. Today he's a quiet, loyal, very sweet, kind of shy adult. He's always thoughtful and polite. He loves music, football, his lifetime friends, camping, and his family. Some girl is going to be so lucky to have him! I just hope she loves football too. I am so proud of the man he has become, but I still miss the everyday joy I felt watching him grow. Now he is out there in the world - I pray for him to have a joyful life. I hope he knows how much he is loved.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009


My retired husband and I just celebrated our 30th anniversary.

. . . overnight get away

. . . great wine

. . . delicious dinner

. . . spectacular view over-looking Keuka Lake

. . . a diamond ring (my first!)

. . . full moon

. . . marveling at how lucky I am to have married this good man

Sunday, August 2, 2009


July 1999

Happy Birthday to my second son, the energetic one and the child that still "checks-in" most often. He has become a thoughtful adult but I do miss the days when he would come downstairs an hour after bedtime for a chat and reassurance. As he returns to graduate school to leave the world of business behind and start a path to environmental sciences, we know he will succeed. He's at that age where I now see a handsome man and not that little boy any more. Makes my heart ache and yet also makes me feel completely happy. He loves life and makes the most of every adventure. Now he is out there in the world - I pray for him to have a joyful life. I hope he knows how much he is loved.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

god bless america

As we gather for one of my favorite holidays, I am awed by our right to "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness." Do we even begin to understand what that really means? With a daughter in South Africa and a son-in-law in Cambodia, Independence Day takes on renewed meaning to me.

On the 50th anniversary of our independence Thomas Jefferson wrote, "Let the annual return of this day forever refresh our recollections of these rights, and an undiminished devotion to them." It was the last letter Jefferson ever wrote. He died 10 days later on July 4, 1826, on the same day within hours of his old friend, fellow Founder, and fellow former President, John Adams of Massachusetts.

As we celebrate with 41 family and friends I quietly thank our founding fathers for their foresight, intelligence, devotion and sacrifice. It was a high price they paid for this amazing country that we live in. God Bless America.

Monday, July 6, 2009

chicken leg

4th of July Oven Fried Chicken
Make ahead so you can enjoy the picnic!
1 beaten egg
3 Tbls milk
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup dry bread crumbs
1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp paprika
2 1/2 lbs meaty chicken pieces
2 Tbls butter melted
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Combine egg and milk in a bowl. Combine Parmesan cheese, bread crumbs, oregano and paprika in a shallow dish Dip chicken pieces into egg mixture; coat with crumb mixture. Arrange chicken in a greased 15x10x1inch baking pan so pieces don't touch. Drizzle with melted butter.
Bake for 45 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink. Do not turn pieces while baking. Serve within 1 hour or cover and chill chicken. If serving later, reheat slightly just before serving.