Our view

Our view

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

It's New Years Eve!

Happy New Year's Eve!  This is the last day of 2014 and I cannot believe how fast it flew by.  We started 2014 with friends and a limo and it continued to get better and better.  We traveled several thousand miles, we saw family and friends, some we haven't seen in years, we became grandparents which is the greatest thing in the world and we have settled down for a while on a farm in Tennessee.
My goal for 2014 was to enjoy family and friends more, spend less money and get healthier and I did all three!  I don't know my goals for 2015 but I will before Jan. 1st is over.  2014 thanks for being a good year; I an looking forward to 2015!

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

We Are Back At The Farm

We had an uneventful trip home which is the perfect way to get home.  We left Sanford at 7:00 AM and arrived in Parrottsville at 5:00 PM. The jeep travels really well.  It is comfortable and has plenty of room for Shadow too.  We averaged about 28 miles to the gallon and with gas prices as low as they are right now we even saved some money on this trip. As we traveled through Jacksonville I took a couple of pictures and a couple more pictures of other areas too.  Jacksonville does have a nice skyline on the river and I wish now that I would have taken more pictures of it.  Another picture is of a bridge in Georgia that runs between Jeckyl Island and St. Simons Island.  It seemed to have taken 7 years to complete.  It was a cloudy drive starting from just south of St. Augustine and lasted until we were just south of Ashville.  The sun only lasted a few minutes before the rain started again.  The clouds were really low over the mountains in North Carolina but it made for a pretty view.  When we arrived home Lisa had made us dinner, her famous meatloaf, and we had a nice evening with George and Lisa talking about our "adventures" in Florida.
Just before we left for Florida our Marriage License came in the mail so tomorrow we are going back to the DMV and try once more to get my Tennessee driver's license.  Wish me luck and that three times a charm with the paperwork.  We had a great time in Florida but it is nice to be back home at the farm!

Monday, December 29, 2014

It's A Travel Day!

Today we head back north to Tennessee.  We have enjoyed our stay in Florida both in Sanford and Orange Park.  We enjoyed our family Christmas with Mom C, Jim & Veronica and Carrie & Daniel.  It was fun being all together and just relaxing and talking.  We had a great time seeing all of our friends in Orange Park and spending more time with Carrie & Daniel.  It was especially nice to attend my church and get a warm welcome by all.  It has been a wonderful week but like all good things must come to an  end it is time for this to end also.  Thank you Jim & Veronica for your hospitality.  You are both very gracious hosts and we enjoyed being together again.  Thank you Carrie & Daniel for speding time together and getting us a great rate on the hotel room.  A big thank you goes to all of our friends that we spent time with , it was so fun!  Tim and I still has Christmas to do at home so check back and see what we get.    Tennessee, here we come!

Sunday, December 28, 2014

We Had A Great Day!

Our day started early with a 6:00 AM visit to Toys 'R' Us to see some of my TRU buddies.  The store looked good and entering it at that hour reminded me of working there again but I don't.  I was warmly greeted by several of my friends I use to work with.  We got all caught up with eachother then Frances and I visited for quite a while longer.  We had lunch with Carrie at the hotel, she was working, and so we just got McDonalds.  The McDonalds near the hotel was awful.  All in all it took me 45 minutes to order and get our food.  I normally do not get too mad at waiting but when I see people who ordered behind get there food and I am watching my food just sit there I finally had enough.  I went to the manager with my complaint.  He finished my order and I was on my way.  Thank goodness we still had people to visit which made the lunch situation disappear.  We went to our old neighborhood and visited some of our neighbors.  We also saw our old house which is up for sale again! We had dinner at Texas Roadhouse with our good friends Bob and Robin, their daughter Cheryl and her fiancé Evan and Carrie and Daniel.  We had a great time together and it was so fun to be together again.  After dinner we headed back over to Toys 'R' Us to visit some more of my TRU buddies then back to the hotel.  We had a great day in Orange Park and it was good to see so many friends again.  Today we are headed south to Sanford for our last night in Florida before we head up north to go home!  Thanks to all we visited with; it was fun!
Today is also a special day as it is my sister Pam's Birthday!  Happy Birthday Pam! I love ya!

Saturday, December 27, 2014

We're Back, Orange Park!

We drove up from Sanford to Orange Park for a couple days to visit Carrie & Daniel and several friends.  Last night we had dinner at Debbie and Bill Fears' house and we had such a great time! Their  daughters, Jessica & Alissa were there too and it was great to be together again.  We even sat around their fire pit and roasted homemade Marshmellows that Jessica made.  It was a great evening with great friends, good food and fun being together.  Thanks Debbie and Bill!

Friday, December 26, 2014

Another Great Christmas

We had a wonderful Christmas especially since we were able to celebrate it with Mom C, Jim & Veronica and Carrie & Daniel.  Jim is a great cook and has made three great meals for us.  We have enjoyed our time together and wish it could be longer but we are grateful for the time we have been together.  Thank you Mom C, Jim & Veronica and Carrie & Daniel for a wonderful Christmas.
Today, Tim and I are headed up to Orange Park to visit family and friends. We are so fortunate to have a wonderful family and great friends, we love you all? Check  back and see what we do next!

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Merry Christmas!

I wish you all a very Merry Christmas!  May your day be Merry and bright!  May it be festive and fun!  I hope Santa is good to everyone,  I will share my Christmas fun in tomorrow's blog but for today I will keep it short and simple, Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

It's Christmas Eve

Happy Christmas Eve, Merry Christmas Eve, it's Christmas Eve?  I am not sure how to say it so I will sum it up by saying Merry Christmas; it is almost here!  We made it to Sanford.  Now it was great driving in our new car which rides great, gets good gas mileage and was very comfortable.  However, I have to add one thing, people are idiots!  Tim is an excellent driver and if I did not know this before yesterday, which I did, I would of learned how good he is.  The conditions were now exactly wonderful for driving; wet, rainy and fog.  We, fortunately, missed getting into two accidents all because people are idiots!  We were in South Carolina and this guy in a red car was merging in from the entrance ramp.  We were already in the left lane and, we thought, clear of the merge but this jerk wasn't happy to be behind the driver in front of him while merging and decided to come into our lane.  Tim had to go drive off the road in order not to be hit.  Once the guy realized what he had done  he sped off like a bat out of hell.  Good riddance!  The next incident happened just south of Jacksonville with another merging lane except this time everything came to a sudden halt.  The car in front of us did go off the road just to make sure he did not get hit which aided us in giving us a place to go to avoid getting hit.  We are thankful nothing happened but making our hearts skip a beat or two.  
We were warmly welcomed by Tim's brother Jim and Tim's Mom.  Jim fixed us an excellent dinner, huge steaks, and we had a great evening talking and getting all caught up with everyone.  Veronica, Jim's wife- my sister in law, came home from work around 9:30.  Veronica is a TSA supervisor at Orlando's airport.  We talked late into the evening.  Carrie and Daniel will be joining us later on today.  We will be celebrating Christmas on Christmas Eve so that Carrie and Daniel can be with Daniel's family on Christmas and Jim and Veronica can spend it with Veronica's family Christmas morning.  It is nice to be together on Christmas, afterall, it has only been 25 years since we last celebrated together.  Yes, it will be a Merry Christmas Eve!  Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

It's A Travel Day!

Today we head south to Florida.  We are spending Christmas in Sanford, FL at Tim's brother's house, Jim and Veronica.  It has been over 25 years since we have had Christmas with Jim and Veronica and Mom C,she flew into Florida today.  Carrie and Daniel will be joining us also. I am looking forward to spending Christmas with everyone.
To get there we will be traveling over 600 miles but we will be driving our new car so we probably won't mind the long drive.  We have heard that gas is under $2 a gallon in South Carolina and Georgia so we will find out and happily fill up!
Yesterday we spent the day getting ready to leave.  Tim worked around the RV and I finished up with all the gifts I made for Christmas.   George and Lisa just got back, last night, from having their Christmas with their kids and family in Jacksonville, FL. So it is our turn to go.  We will also be spending a couple days, after Christmas, in Jacksonville.  Florida, here we come!

Monday, December 22, 2014

Paper Is Amazing!

I spent most of my day creating Christmas presents and most of the gifts I was making was made from paper.  It is amazing what you can do with paper and although I won't be able to show you what I made, some of you will be receiving what I made. After  Christmas I will post the items with instructions. Until then, I can only tease you with the pictures I will post.
So I have to ask for prayers, first for my mom who is back in the hospital with yet another infection.  She is doing well. Now the second request for prayer is for my daughter Jenny who lost her wedding rings while shopping yesterday..  It was a dumb accident but please pray that the person who found the rings will turn them in.
Only a couple more days to Christmas and just today for us.  We leave for Florida Tuesday morning to spend Christmas with Carrie, Mom C and Jim & Veronica.  It has been several years since we have celebrated Christmas together so it should be a lot of fun, Tis the Season!

Sunday, December 21, 2014

FaceTime Is Great!

I have to say that FaceTime is great!  It is one of the best things to use to help cheer someone up, watch your grandchild say her first actual word and keep in touch with friends and loved ones.  Skype is also great that way.  Why am I telling you something you already know?  Because yesterday I used it to my advantage! I was talking to my mom while my sister was visiting her.  During the conversation my mom kept saying I wish I could see you to me.  So, I asked my mom to hand the phone to Pam and when she got on I said let's FaceTime.  We ended our conversation and the next thing my mom saw when Pam handed her the phone was me!  My mom was so surprised and happy.  We FaceTimed for quite a while.  I was able to let her see all my Christmas decorations especially the ones she had given me over the years.  It was a great way to spend some time with my mom and Pam especially since I could not just walk into her hospital room.  
Later on, my daughter Jenny FaceTimed me and I got to see my little Rory.  Jenny and Nate have a daily vlog on YouTube, That One Couple, and through their daily vlog I get to see Rory daily.  The point I am trying to get to is Rory is so use to the camera that she recognizes the phone as one and what makes it so special for me is when we FaceTime and I say hello to my sweet Rory she instantly smiles.  Now I know that it is a reaction to the camera but as a Grandma her response, to me, is "Hello Grandma, I love you!"  I also got to hear Rory say "Da Da" yesterday.  With FaceTime we will be able to watch Rory open her Christmas presents and eventhough we won't be together we will be!  Like I said in the beginning, FaceTime is great!

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Meeting More Neighbors

We spent most of the morning talking with the neighbors; at least the ones who live off of Quail Way. There are now four homes on Quail Way. Remember that Quail Way is a long road and because we are so spread out we don't see much of eachother. We pass Linda and Rick's driveway everytime we come and go yet we have never seen them. We have met their dog Rusty that comes over and plays with Shadow. In fact Rusty, who wonders all over Quail Way got Shadow in trouble. Up until Rusty came along Shadow was good about never leaving the farm property. However once Rusty came along and showed Shadow that there was so much more of Quail Way Shadow took off a few times and even found the ponds that are off of Quail Way. So, for now, Shadow is on his lead learning "his" territory again. Anyway, Linda was calling for Rusty and drove up to the farm. We introduced ourselves then spent the next hour talking. After Linda left Tim ran to the store and our other neighbor, Cheryl, came by with a package that was dropped off for us. She and I got to talking and spent another hour chatting away. We shared some recipes, I showed her some of the decorations I made and all sorts of other things. It was a nice way to get to know the neighbors better and I think once the holidays are over we will have them all over for a BBQ or a street party since we all live off of Quail Way!

Friday, December 19, 2014

Last Post Office Run

I sent off my last Christmas package yesterday and the really nice thing about living in a small town is that there was no line at our small post office. I don't think I have ever not had to stand in line at the post office this time of year. It took about 5 minutes to walk into the post office, pay for the package and walk out. All I can say is Wow! After the post office and the dump, in that order, Tim and I headed to Newport to return something at Lowes, do a little shopping and have lunch out. We went to Ruby Tuesday and we got there just before the lunch rush hit. I love the coupons that Ruby Tuesday sends me through email; I used my $5.00 salad bar one yesterday. When we got back home I spent the rest of the day in the Crafty Cottage working on some more Christmas presents. I also made a really great pork loin in the crock pot for dinner that I will share the recipe on a later post. It was good and there is a lot left over so we can have another pork loin roast, pulled pork, pork tacos, etc. I know one thing I will not do with the meat is make Pork Soup; that was a big mistake. We have not had any sun for the last 3-4 day so hopefully we will see some soon. Check back tomorrow and see if the sun showed up.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

A TV Antenna Or A Ray Gun?

We have a new TV antenna for the Crafty Cottage and George and Lisa's house.  Tim put it up two days ago and he has been tweaking it the last couple of days.  He is working very hard at getting the most channels we can.  We are located between two major cities so if we point the antenna one way we get the Tri-Cities Broadcast area and if we point it another way we get Knoxville broadcasting area.  The problem is one way or the other we still miss out on getting a couple of channels.  For instance, if we point the antenna one way we get most of the channels except NBC and if we go the other way we miss several other channels.  He is going to work with it again tomorrow to see if a clear day or cloudy day makes a difference.  I did take a picture of Tim and the antenna or is it a ray gun?

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

A Frustrating Day

Our day started early because we were getting our Tennessee Driver's License and we were not sure how busy the DMV would be.  Unlike other's States DMV Tennessee only gives appointments for people needing to take a driving test.  The closest DMV was in Morristown (about 40 minutes away) so we got their just after opening time and there were only 6 people ahead of us.  The line went quickly but as were we in line we checked out all the paperwork we needed and realized I did not have our marriage license so I had to wait for Tim to finish getting his license.  We then drove back home, got the license then went back to the DMV.  Everything was going great until the final window when my copy of our marriage license, the only one we have ever had and used, was declined because it did not have a stamp on it.  So, after trying so hard to get my license it was a fail!  Since we were in Morristown and it was lunchtime we decided to have lunch out and went to Longhorn Steakhouse.  When we got home I looked up what I had to do to get a "real" copy of our Marriage Certificate and it will take up to a month to get the copy. Until then I will remain a Florida resident and Tim is a Tennessee resident.  I don't seem to have good luck at the DMV and yesterday was no exception.  Hopefully, when the copy of our marriage license arrives, I will be able to get my Tennessee Driver's  License, some day!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

A Glitter Filled Day

A couple of years ago I learned how to make glitter ornaments using clear glass ornaments, glitter and floor wax.  I had purchased several different glass ornaments over the past few years but never really knew what I wanted to do with them.  On Pinterest I saw these glitter ornaments and I wanted to do them.  I did and I made so many that several family and friends received them.  Now it is a few years later and at first when I started to make them again I thought, yeah, they are okay then after my third one I was really beginning to enjoy it.  14 ornaments later I actually started to run out of glitter.  So, those of you that I will see for or around Christmas will be receiving one; surprise!  The picture I will post only represents the first couple I made.  The rest will be a surprise!  Now, about the fun of cleaning up glitter?  There is no fun because it does not Totally go away.  So for the next few days I will encounter some glitter somewhere in the Crafty Cottage, at least it goes with the season!

Monday, December 15, 2014

Christmas Shopping Part 3 - The End?

Yesterday started very early as Tim and George got up really early to go and sell some items at the Jonesboro Flea Market in Jonesboro, TN.  When George inquired about the flas market he was told to get there early because most of the visitors to the flea market come early.  So they headed to the flea market around 5:00 am to set up and be ready for the crowds.  Well, they ended up being one of three vendors there to sell until later when other vendors arrived.  They were set up and ready to go at 8:00 am when the gates opened up but instead of a huge crowd they ended up fighting the cold weather and tried to stay warm.  Lisa and I joined them later and I guess you could say that was the beginning of my Christmas shopping Part 3.  I did not buy anything at the flea market except for a big cup of hot chocolate which tasted great especially since it was so cold out; a warm 38 degrees.  We all left the flea market around noon happy but cold.  We were happy because George and Tim had sold all the stuff they brought so we had lunch then Lisa and I headed up to Johnson City to do some shopping and Tim and George headed home to warm up.  I think I have completed my Christmas shopping and now all I have to do is wrap and distribute all the gifts.  I still have more gifts to make but at least I am done shopping in the stores?!?  Lisa made a great sausage meatball chili for dinner and she invited Tim and I over so we all enjoyed it at their house with a bottle of wine from the local winery we visited the other day.  It was another good day at and around  the farm.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

A Crafty Saturday

It was a day of crafting yesterday and Lisa and I made quite a few Christmas presents and decorations.  We spent the morning in the RV working on some things, I can't share because some of you may receive the gifts we made.  Then after lunch we spent the rest of the day in the Crafty Cottage creating all sorts of gifts.  There is still a couple more projects to go but we did manage to get quite a few projects completed.  I think the glitter project was the most successful because glitter was flying all over the place.  So it was a good day and on my walk up to the RV I got to see another beautiful sunset.  It was a good day!

Saturday, December 13, 2014

The Goodwater Vineyard

Lisa and I visited the Goodwater Winery yesterday.  We have passed the sign for vineyard several times but never stopped so yesterday we had some free time and so we stopped by.  It is a small family run winery that has been in business for 10 years but they have just opened their tasting room. It is small but very unique.  The tasting does cost $4 but you get to keep your wine glass so we did it.  They are currently making 5 wines using only the grapes they have grown in their vineyard.  We tasted all five wines and for one of the wines we went out to the room where they make the wine to get a taste. The wine came right out the vat it was being made in. We liked the sweet wines the best, I always have, so we each purchased a few bottles of wine; some as gifts and some for us.  I know we will be visiting Goodwater Winery again but next time we will have Tim and George join us.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Visitors At The Farm

Larry and Linda Vanderwilt came to visit yesterday at the farm.  The Vanderwilts are friends of ours that have visited before.  We have known eachother for years and when we get together we always have a good time.  Yesterday was another fun day.  After touring everything new at the farm (they were here in Sept. and saw what we had done so far) and they did see some changes.  The Crafty Cottage is done, our shed is done and George and Lisa's house is done enough to live in.  Linda and I went and "played" in the Crafty Cottage.  Linda had a couple of rubber stamps that she had received and wanted to make some cards with them so we worked on a card, which turned out really well for her first one, and then we gathered some supplies so she could create some more at home.  After making cards we headed up to the RV where we were joined by Tim and Larry and later George and Lisa.  I had fixed some snacks and after enjoying them Linda spent the next hour trying to help me crochet.  If you followed my Travels With Ruth blog you know it was not the first time I tried to crochet.  Well, as good as Linda was learning how to make cards I was the opposite in crocheting. I get the concept I just cannot get the technique down but Linda left me with yarn and a booklet and some more understanding that I am going to try it again.  I am hoping when the Vanderwilts return at the end of January I will have at least mastered the first and second row.  Thanks Linda for your patience with me while crocheting.  I can do it!  I have another snack recipe to share but that will be in another post. Thank you Larry and Linda for coming for a visit.  We all enjoyed spending time with you.  Come back any time!

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Christmas Shopping - Round Two, The Marathon!

Lisa and I decided to do some serious shopping and headed west to Knoxville!  Why Knoxville?  It has all the stores and one special one in particular; Publix.  Publix is a grocery store in Florida and there is now one in Knoxville.  What I like best about Publix is their Deli Sub Sandwiches and their Sweet Tea.  So after our first couple of stops we headed to the University of Tennessee campus where the Publix was located.  The sub tasted great and we also picked up a couple of items from the store too.  We then began our marathon session of Christmas shopping hitting several stores and successfully getting presents along the way.  We shopped all day and well into the night.  It was a 12 hour session and I know I did manage to  check some gifts of my list and I think Lisa did too!  It was a good day, spending it with a good friend and getting some shopping done; thanks Lisa!  On our drive home last night we stopped to get a fast food dinner and came upon an incredible Christmas light show but we were tired from shopping and we still had an hour's drive to go so we looked at the lights from the road.  On our drive home we both were surprised how easy it was to shop.  All the stores that we visited were not very busy, a plus for us, and when I was chatting with some of the cashiers they all did agree that it had been a quiet day considering it is only two weeks until Christmas.  Maybe Gray Thursday (Thanksgiving) and Black Friday along with Cyber Monday did allow people to complete their shopping.  As for me, I still enjoy shopping like I did yesterday!

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Cold Day Means Craft Day!

On a cold and rainy day where is the best way to spend it?  Either in the warm RV watching TV or in the warm and cozy Crafty Cottage working on Christmas presents; Tim and I did both.  It was such a lazy day and after working on various projects at the farm Tim took a day off and just stayed inside and relaxed.  Something he has not done for quite a while.  As for me, I was at the Crafty Cottage playing and creating.  I can't show you everything I did because some are gifts but I will post some of the things I did.  Lisa and I did run out to the post office and counrty store but most of the day we stayed at the farm and out of the weather.  It was a cold day and the temperature was just at the point where it was not cold enough to snow but not warm enough for rain.  What did we have? Sleet!  At times it came down pretty heavy too which made it the perfect day to stay inside.  Even Shadow had an inside day!  It's nice to be able to have days like these and I know there will be more of them to come; after all Winter hasn't even come yet!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

A New Favorite!

I had said I was going to be trying some new recipes and I think I have found the one that I will be using for special occasions and gift giving.  For years I use to make homemade Chex Mix and over the years I have given out quite a bit as presents but not this year.  I have a new "treat" that I will be using as gifts.  What is it?  Homemade Peanut Clusters!  I found a recipe on Pinterest using the slow cooker to make peanut clusters.  I am usually the one that does not venture out and do anything that contains melting chocolate only because I have had too many experiences where I have burned the chocolate.  Well since I have found this recipe I am all about melting chocolate!  Using the slow cooker, three ingredients and about two hours from start to finish I have now made the best peanut clusters I have ever had! I will be giving these as gifts this year but as a gift to you I will also share the recipe.  So here it is:

Slow Cooker Peanut Clusters
1 (20oz) package of vanilla almond bark
1 (12oz) package of semi sweet chocolate chips
1 (16oz) jar of dry roasted peanuts
1. Place the almond bark and chocolate chips in the slow cooker
2. Cover and cook on high for 1 hour
3. Stir until blended ( it will look like nothing has melted until you start stirring)
4. Add peanuts and stir
5. Drop tablespoonfuls onto wax paper
6. Let is stand until set
7. Once set store in an air tight container or zip lock bag.

So easy and sooooooo good,enjoy!

Monday, December 8, 2014

Another Day To Celebrate

Tim took me out yesterday and bought me some new hiking boots.  Around here I will be needing them to walk through the snow or keep my footing on the hills when climbing up or down when it is slick out.  I have only slipped once and that was in the snow.  After shopping for the boots he took me to lunch at Ruby Tuesday where I was able to use my coupon for a free Birthday burger.  The burger was good and cooked just the way I like it.  We spent most of the afternoon setting up my TV and DVD player in the Crafty Cottage.  We were also going to move my CD player down but it needs an amplifier to power it up so that will go back into the RV.  All we need now is a good antenna (one is ordered) and I will be all set in the Crafty Cottage.  We ended our evening at George and Lisa's house for dessert.  Thanks Tim for a nice day!

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Christmas Shopping - Round One!

It was a cold and rainy day yesterday so what better thing to do but to make chili and go Christmas shopping. There was a Christmas Village Craft show going on in Morristown so Lisa and I drove up to Morristown, visited the Home Depot to return some items (it is the only Home Depot in the area) and then headed over to the Christmas Village. This was a smaller craft show than most of the Fall Festivals that we attended this Fall but we still managed to find a few things for some peole on our Christmas lists. One of the reasons I like going to Morristown is that there is a Hobby Lobby there. So, after we left Christmas Village we went to the Mall and had lunch at El Toro, which was very good, and then headed to Hobby Lobby. I had forgotten that this is the first week end after the Thanksgiving holiday so everyone was out Christmas shopping. The Mall was crowded but Hobby Lobby was packed. We got one of the last shopping carts then we almost had to fight to get through every aisle. Lisa has this beautiful box that she purchased at the Fall Festival in Cosby and it has fall decorations in it. So now it was time to change the decorations to Christmas. We looked through all of the greenery and Christmas picks, pointsettas, garland, etc and Lisa picked out some pretty colorful items that is going to really make a very nice display. I will take pictures when it is completed. We also bought some supplies needed to make several Christmas presents and decorations. After we left Hobby Lobby we headed over to the Dollar Tree for some stocking stuffers. We wanted to get back to Parrottsville by 3:00 to watch the Parrottsville Christmas Parade but with the rain we decided not to attend. Instead, we watched the SEC Championship game: Alabama vs Missouri; Missouri lost. The chili tasted good but I think that the weather outside, still cold and rainy, and watching football made it taste even better. So Round One of Christmas shopping is complete with Round Two beginning it a couple of days. 'Tis the Season!

Saturday, December 6, 2014


Thank you for all the Birthday wishes, calls, cards and presents!  I appreciated them all so much and it made my day.  I am truly blessed with the family and friends that I have.  Lisa and I started the day with a stop at the local doughnut shop in Newport then ran some errands after that.  We stopped by a Redbox where I got a free Birthday movie and then headed back to the farm for a quiet afternoon.  George and Tim were busy running more lines for the electricity so that hopefully by Monday the main line will be activated to the farm.  My present from Tim was a TV for the Crafty Cottage and yesterday he also put up an antenna to get the local channels.  Thank you Tim.  We went to dinner in Greeneville last night and tried a new restaurant for us.  It was called FATZ and is similar to a Texas Roadhouse or a Logan's Steakhouse.  They are known for their World Famous Calabash Chicken so I had to give it a try.  It was good!  Everyone enjoyed their meals so we now have another place to go for lunch or dinner.  After dinner Lisa had made a Birthday cake for me so we ended the night with a delicious piece of cake, thanks Lisa!  So it was a wonderful Birthday and once again thank you for making it so special!

Friday, December 5, 2014

It's Double Fives For Me Today!

Yup, I am 55 today.  I have no idea what today brings but I am sure it will be a good one as it is my first one at the farm.  Birthdays, in my family,  have always been special and when I was growing up and mostly through my adult years this has stayed true.  So, check back tomorrow and find out what happens.
Yesterday was a quiet day but still a productive day.  I made a new crock pot meal which sounded great and it tasted fine but it looked terrible.  I made scallop potatoes with ham and I followed the recipe exactly but the picture on the recipe did not match the looks of my dinner.  So, the next time I make it I will tweak the recipe and if it turns out better I will then share the recipe.  I did wrap presents yesterday and started my Christmas cards too. Lisa and I bought some cute decorations for our mail boxes so we put them up yesterday.  Check out the picture I posted.  Last night I did have something I have never had before, Grape pie.  Our neighbors, harvested the grapes that George grew at the farm and made several grape pies.  She brought one to George and Lisa and last night we had it after dinner. It was interesting!  The first few bites reminded me of blueberry pie but then the tartness set in.  We were warned the pie would be tart and it was but we all managed to get past the tartness and enjoyed the pie.  The neat thing is that the grapes were from the farm.  Next year maybe Lisa and I will try making jam from the grapes!  We will all just have to wait and see!

Thursday, December 4, 2014

The Electrical Passed

Congratulations George and all your hard work you did in getting the electricity up to code at the farm.  You and BJ worked hard to get everything perfect and we all appreciate it.  For the county we live in the Electricity codes are tough and it took a while to get everything to meet the codes.  With this complete George and Lisa's house is a step closer to truly being finished. Now that the electricity is approved the electric company can come out and finish with the power poles and we all will have our own meters and electric bills.  With the good comes the bad, haha!
While George and BJ dealt with the inspector yesterday Tim, Lisa and I went to town to grocery shop.  With the exception of last week, buying just the things I needed to make Thanksgiving dinner, I have not done a big shop since the beginning of October.  So my list was long but I am trying out some new recipes and I will share them with you when I do. There are two recipes I am excited to try, the first one is chocolate peanut clusters made in the crock pot and the second is a chicken cordon blue casserole.  Both sound yummy!  Check back and see!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

A Quick Trip To Asheville, NC

So I got a Birthday present early, my Birthday is Friday, but we had to drive to Asheville to pick it up.  We took advantage of Cyber Monday and got a new TV for our bedroom.  The TV that is in our bedroom now will move down to my Crafty Cottage.  We still have to get the TV bracket to hang the TV in the craftroom, along with an antenna, but after we have those Tim will mount the TV.  Now I may never leave my Crafty Cottage.  The drive took about and hour and a half but it is an easy drive and driving through the mountains was nice.  We did some Christmas shopping after picking up the TV and I also went into Joann's to get some items for some gifts I want to make.  We had a nice day and it was fun to get a Birthday gift early!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

A Day Of Christmas Decorating

I spent all day decorating the RV for Christmas.  Christmas is my favorite holiday again.  I say again because while I was working at Toys R Us I got so I hated Christmas but since I have been retired I have grown to love Christmas again.  I have had our decorations in storage for a few years so when I was unpacking our decorations  it took a little longer because everything had a memory that I thought about each time I took something out of the boxes.  Decorating the tree took some time for two reasons, 1) the memories and 2) making space for all the new ornaments we have received the past couple of years.  The trees are full and look pretty good.  I am almost done I just have to finish the dining table.  I have posted some pictures of my progress.  Check back for more later on!

Monday, December 1, 2014

A Crafty Sunday

I have enjoyed the last three days working away in the Crafty Cottage.  I started my first Christmas decoration project for this year.  I had to make a mock up one first to see if I liked it and since I did I decided to make seven more. I was working on Christmas faces banner. There was a lot of pieces to this project but it turned out great, in my opinion.  A couple of years I made some Halloween faces banners and this year my daughter Jenny asked me to make a Christmas one so I did.  It was the first Christmas decoration I put up this year.  I have plans for more projects but today I am going to concentrate on getting my Christmas trees up and decorated along with the rest of our Christmas decorations.  I will post pictures of my progress.  Happy Monday to you all.

Sunday, November 30, 2014

A Second Thanksgiving

Tim and I were fortunate to have a second Thanksgiving. George and Lisa's kids came up to visit the farm for the week end.  Since they could not make it on Thanksgiving Day Lisa decided to cook Thanksgiving dinner for them.  We were included for dinner. Lisa cooked all day long and she did a fabulous job. Dinner was delicious.  Thank you Lisa!  Lisa made the dinner in her brand new kitchen in her brand new house.  We enjoyed a huge Thanksgiving dinner in the new house, the first meal in the new house, and with George and Lisa and their kids Travis and Kaitlyn.  It was good to be able to see and chat with them.  Lisa did request some of my pumpkin pie so I made two more pies for our second Thanksgiving.  Thank you George and Lisa for including us at your Thanksgiving dinner.  We are truly blessed to have you as friends and we are so fortunate to be living at the farm!

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Black Friday

So, how did you spend your Black Friday? I spent mine in my Crafty Cottage working on Christmas items. It was great! I was able to get a lot done and it felt good to just spend the day crafting. Tim was helping George finish up with a few things in George and Lisa's new house and last night they spent their first night in the house. Their house turned out great and it is really beautiful inside especially with all the natural elements they used. There are still a few more things to get done and when it is complete, and with their permission, I will post some pictures of the new Francisco home. George and Lisa's kids are coming for the week end so it will be a nice family week end and another Thanksgiving dinner! Have a good Saturday!

Friday, November 28, 2014

Pumpkin Pie

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving.  Ours was quiet but nice.  We were fortunate to celebrate it with George and Lisa and shared a great dinner if I do say so myself.  Our turkey was a little small, I thought I had picked up a turkey breast, we prefer white meat over dark meat, but in the turkey breast section at Walmart someone had placed a small turkey in with the breasts.  Well Loomis Luck struck again and I picked up the small turkey instead of all the turkey breasts I was looking at.  Oh well, it was still good we just don't have any left over turkey.  At least I have the carcass to make turkey soup.  I made my traditional Thanksgiving dinner with Turkey, dressing, mashed potatoes, gravy, green bean casserole, green beans, honey glazed carrots and rolls.  For dessert, my homemade pumpkin pies.  Pumpkin pies is my one signature dish that no matter where we have Thanksgiving I am requested to make the pumpkin pies.  The recipe I use I got from my boss of 30 years ago.  Jim said he had a great and easy recipe that he rarely shared but he did with me.  I am grateful to Jim every time I make pumpkin pies. For years, when my girls were growing up, after we had our tradional cinnamon rolls for breakfast we would then make the pumpkin pies before putting the turkey in the oven.  All while watching another tradition, the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.  Carrie and Jenny did not like pumpkin pie when there were growing up but they did like helping  make the pies.  This year I was on my own making them but even so it brings back all the memories of years past.  Tim loves pumpkin pie, it is one of his favorites, so the pies I made yesterday will not go to waste.  Thank you George and Lisa for joining us for Thanksgiving dinner.  Tim and I are truly blessed to have you as friends.  We are also blessed with a wonderful family, our girls Carrie and Jenny and our beautiful Rory, and all our great friends.  We were blessed to have traveled for these past few years but are even more blessed now to be living here at the farm.  Thanksgiving is a day to be thankful and we are!

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving, may you all have a good one.  We are very blessed this year with Rory, our granddaughter and that we have a place to stay on when we are not traveling, thanks to George and Lisa. We have so many things to be thankful for so on this day I hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving.  Enjoy your famliy and friends, good food and a day to reflect on how blessed you are and I will be doing the same!  Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Creating Paths

Tim and George spent some time creating new paths from the RV to the new house.  We now have a path/driveway from our storage shed down to the main path at the farm.  A few loads of gravel were brought in to create our new path and George and Lisa's new driveway.  George used his new Big toy, the front loader aka bulldozer to me, and Tim used George's Steiner tractor.  Together they have created walkways/driveways so that we are able to stay on the paths/driveway where it will be easier to walk and drive and maybe stay out of the mud.  This will be great after rain or snow as it is pretty tough to deal with the mud/clay when the ground is wet.  In some cases it gets so mucky you could lose a shoe in the stuff.  Our path/driveway will be nice for me once the golf cart is working so at night I can use that to get to and from the RV and Crafty Cottage and not walk around in the dark and believe me,  it is dark!
Today we will be busy getting the house ready so George and Lisa can move into this week end.  The house is looking really good and with each passing day more is getting finished up and ready to be lived in.  Lisa and I will be busy cleaning up all the construction dust and getting the bedroom and bathroom ready to paint.  George and Tim have errands to run and then more work getting the house ready. By Friday,  George and Lisa expect to move in!  This is so exciting and we are so happy for them.  Their  home is beautiful inside and out!
Thanksgiving is tomorrow and we are lucky to be able to have two Thanksgivings this year.  I am cooking our traditional dinner on Thanksgiving and Lisa will be cooking her traditional Thanksgiving dinner on Sunday while their kids are visiting.  We have a lot to be thankful for!

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Wow, There Was A Lot Going On At The Farm

So while I was gone for almost three weeks from the farm a lot happened in my absence.  George got a new toy, a bulldozer.  George and Lisa's house is really coming along and they may be moving into it by Thanksgiving.  The tile is all done in the bathroom, the appliances came and are all installed and ready for use.  The stone work around the fireplace was completed today and the ceilings in the bedroom/bathroom area will be completed tomorrow.  There is still more to do but a big chunk has been completed.  Our shed is completely done.  It is insulated with the washer and dryer all hooked up and are working great.  Tim worked hard on the shed; thanks Tim! He also got the farm truck working so we are ready to tackle any job that comes along.  I did peek into my crafty cottage but I did not do anything in there.  I have tons of dead ladybugs in the cottage that I have to get cleaned up.  So, what's next?  Cooking Thanksgiving dinner, working on the golf cart, decorating for Christmas and Christmas Shopping.  So, it will be busy and that is okay!

Monday, November 24, 2014

I Am Back Home In Tennessee

I spent most of yesterday flying home to Tennessee.  I left Carlsbad around 8:30 am Pacific time and got home 12:30 am Eastern time.  Long day of flying but the flights were good and even the three hour layover in Minneapolis was not bad.  Yes, I flew from San Diego to Minneapolis to Knoxville to get home.  I think I flew over the Grand Canyon on the way to Minneapolis but since I was over the wing it was hard to tell.  I will post a picture and you can tell me what you think.  Tim was there at the airport where he picked me up in our brand new car and let me just say it is nice.  I want to take this opportunity to thank Pam and Brian for all they did.  They treated me to a wonderful three week vacation in California where I got to spend a lot of time with them, my mom, brother  and sister in law.  I also got to see and spend time with so many of my California friends.  To top that off Pam got great seats for "Wicked".  THANK YOU SO MUCH Pam and Brian!  I had a great time.
Today I have lots to do beside unpacking I have to go grocery shopping, check out all the things that happened on the farm since I left, clean up the RV and check out my Crafty Cottage and storage shed.  Check back tomorrow to see all I discovered.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

We Saw Wicked!

Pam and I went to see the Musical "Wicked".  We both have seen it before but it was in town while I was in San Diego so Pam got great tickets, 12th row center.  It was amazing and once again I was so totally wowed.  The actresses who played Glinda and Alphaba were fantastic and the rest of the cast was too.  Kim Zimmer, formally of Guilding Light and Tim Kazinski from Sat. night Live played Madame and the Wizard.  It was a fantastic show!  After the show we went to dinner at Buca de Beppo as a farewell dinner with Pam and Brian and the Humberstones.  It was a nice way to spend my last evening in California.  Thank you All!
I fly home today back to Knoxville then drive to Parrottsville.  I can't believe how fast these past three weeks went and I sure had a great time.  It was good to spend time with my sister Pam and Brian.  I got to see a lot of my mom, my brother Craig and Karyn and all my California friends.  Thanks to all for making my time here fun and thank you Pam and Brian for everything!

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Girls Night Out With My Cali BFFs

Last night was so much fun!  I have several wonderful friends here in California that I have known now for several years and every time I come to visit we get together and just have a great time.  We have been calling eachother BFFs for a long time and I know some of you may think that is a little juvenile but it describes us perfectly.  I am very honored to have these ladies as my friends.  Last night Evie hosted our get together at her house and it was fun to be together again with Evie, Kendra, Gail, Susan and Pam.  There was good food, drink and lots of talking.  We also decided to work on a craft; we made candy cane wreaths.  I had made one for Pam's SAS last week end and since they all liked them we decided to make some together.  It was candy cane mayhem!  Kendra had purchase several boxes of candy canes and so we heated up the glue guns and got started.  It was interesting that a bunch of candy canes could have such a different outcome with each wreath.  Some wreaths turned out perfectly and some had to be manipulated due to the candy cane's shape.  You would be surprised how one candy cane being just a slightly different size, we are talking millimeters, could throw off the entire wreath. It made each wreath unique in it's own way but all were beautiful.  Now what also makes our get togethers even more fun is the array of food being served and the highlight for me was the lumpia, yummy!  Our choice of drink last night was A & W Rootbeer, do we know how to party or what?  So thank you Pam, Evie, Kendra, Gail and Susan for our evening of fun!  You are all so wonderful!  My California BFFs are the best!

Friday, November 21, 2014

Making A Bow Maker

I spent part of yesterday making bow makers.  What is a bow maker?  It is a tool used to make different size bows using ribbon..  I use this tool all the time to make bows for my cards or paper crafts.  The bow maker is a very simple tool but is very helpful especially if you are like me and cannot make a decent bow (tying a ribbon bow).  My sister had this tool for years and I saw hers and decided to go home and make my own.  For a couple of dollars I did.  Over the week end some of the ladies at the SAS wanted to know how we made so many bows for the projects.  My sister showed them the bow maker and how easy it was to use.  Then she said I knew how to make them.  A bunch of ladies wanted them so that is why I spent some time yesterday making bow makers.  I have posted some pictures of the process.
After I was done with the bow makers my sister and I went to the Carter's outlet.   I have had  terrible results finding Rory's Christmas pajamas until yesterday at Carters.  I found Rory's pajamas added a couple of things and now she will have her Christmas Eve package to open up.
Last night Pam and I went to dinner with our friend Lorraine.  We went to Miguel's, a Mexican restaurant and decided to take advantage of Happy Hour and just ordered a bunch of appetizers for dinner.  We had beef flauntas, pollo asada nachos, Miguel's chicken wings, pollo asada quesadillas and a fish taco (for Pam).  It was all good but took forever for service.  The chips and salsa came right away and the waiter did come for our drink order but then disappeared and we waited over 20 minutes for our drinks and to order food.  Another staff member came and asked how everything was and found out we were still waiting to order and get our drinks.  She took our food order and 5 minutes later our drinks showed up.  Our apps finally came and we enjoyed the evening with friends making good conversation and enjoying our food and drinks.  Thanks Pam and Lorraine for a great night out!  Today will be a busy day so check back tomorrow and see why!

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Doctor, No Doctor

I got up to my mom's home around 8:00 am to take her to a couple of Dr appointments.  It was just suppose to be that easy.  9:00 was the first and 11:00 was the second.  I got to the first appointment and could not find the Dr's office and when I called the number to find out where it was located I was informed there was not a Dr by that name in that office.  Confused I called my brother who then verified that it was the correct address but also no Dr.  45 minutes later we still had no idea where to go and to my knowlegde still don't.  The second appointment was also cancelled because when my brother called to confirm he was told the Dr had a call so there would be no appointments.  When I told my mom she was so happy as she does not enjoy going to the Doctor.  So, with that said we decided to have a fun day together and headed to the Mall near by.  Just a note, it seems that I do not have the best of luck taking my mom's to appointments as this was not the first time appointments did not work out for us.  Anyway, we went to the mall and had a good time looking through stores, checking out the Christmas decorations and having a great lunch and ice cream sundae at Farrell's Ice Cream Parlor.  My mom finally ate well and was so full that she said she did not want ice cream but when the sundae I ordered for the two of us came she managed to eat most of it.  My Mom loves ice cream!  So what turned out to be a day my mom was not planning on enjoying turned into a day that she had a very good time.  I left my mom exhausted but in a good way.  It was fun shopping with my mom; something we use to do a lot when I was growing up.  Thanks Mom for a fun day!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Oh Baby, It's Cold Outside

I heard from Tim and he said it is cold outside and after checking the weather it is.  17 degrees right now in Parrottsville.  Now I am still in San Diego with a low of 51 which does not sound cold for the rest of the country but it is for Southern California. Carrie called me last night and said Jacksonville is in the 30's which is cold for Florida and I won't even bring up the temperatures in Chicago.  All I have to say is Brrr it IS cold outside. I have to say I am glad I am missing the real cold weather right now in the rest of the country but do also realize that I only have a few more days to enjoy the Southern California weather.  Today is an early day for me as I have to take my mom to a couple of Dr Appointments with her first at 9:00 am.  Being that I am in San Diego and she is in Laguna I have a bit of a drive to get up to her so I can get her to her appointments.  After her second one we will go and have some fun if she is feeling up to it.
Meanwhile, besides the cold weather, Tim has been busy at the farm working on an old Ford truck.  He has discovered that a truck is needed on the farm and George has an old Ford he bought last year but needed some work on it to get it going. So Tim got it running again and yesterday, using George's new toy,  put a heavy duty bed on the truck.  Now they have an operational truck that will allow them to do some of the things like fill a couple of 100 Pound propane tanks that will be used for heating and more.  George's new toy is a bulldozer that allows him to do even more things on the farm too!  All these changes in my absence; I will post pictures of both.  Stay warm if you are in the cold!

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Some More Successes

Tim has been busy at the farm apnd has completed hooking up the Washer and Dryer.  He did the first wash in the washer and everything worked great.  Lisa then did her laundry too!  With this, it means no more laundromat in Parrottsville,  which as nice as it was, but the only thing I will miss is doing a few loads of laundry in an hour.  Thank you Tim for working so hard to get our "laundry room" completed!
Another Huge success is that my brother in law, Brian, was able to pull everything off my hard drive from my laptop that quit on me.  Tim took the hard drive out of my laptop and I brought it with me when I came to California.  Brian was not only able to get everything off of my hard drive but then he converted my drive into an external hard drive that now gives me a huge drive to store everything and back up anything and everything that I may put on my new laptop when I get it.  Thank you Brian for retrieving my data from my old drive and giving me more storage space.  Now all Tim and I have to do is find the right laptop for me in our price range!

Monday, November 17, 2014

A Day With Mom At Home

My Mom is home and feeling so much better.  She has been in the hospital for the last month getting over a terrible kidney infection.  The Urologist said it was the worse abscess on a kidney he had ever seen.  The infection is gone and she is really feeling well.  She is weak from not moving around while in the hospital.  She will begin physical therapy today  and they will work on making her stronger.  She still has several DR appointments but at least she is back in her own place.  My sister and I took her shopping and out to lunch yesterday and I think we wore her out because when we got back to her place she was ready to sit in her recliner and relax.  It sure is good to have her home and looking like her old self again.  Way to go Mom!

Sunday, November 16, 2014

The SAS Was A Success And More Good News Too!

Pam's Holiday SAS was a success and I think everyone who attended had a good time.  The cards were well liked and the Doorprizes were a hit.  There were some extra Doorprizes that were won and the ladies all seemed to like those too!  I even gave my first Christmas present to a friend and received one too!  Thanks Pat, you are way too kind.  I saw a lot of friends and made some new ones too!  Of course all of the ladies were very sweet asking about my little Rory and even wanted to see some of Rory's pictures which allowed me to be a bragging Grandma; it was fun!
I want to congratulate Pam, she did a great job and I am so proud of her.  Her SAS's are very successful and she deserves all the praises I can share about her.  Way to go Pam!!!  After the SAS we got everything cleaned up in about an hour thanks to Carrie and Peyton helping us get it all done and now it looks like Pam never even hosted such a big event. We all went to Islands for dinner, they have great burgers, where we relaxed and enjoyed good food and friends.
We had even more good news yesterday, my Mom was sent home.  Her kidney infection is gone and she was released from the skilled nursing facility yesterday.  Pam and I are going to go spend the day with her at her home today.  I know my mom is happy to be finally out of both hospitals and I am sure she slept well back in her own bed.  My mom still has several more Doctor Appointments because of her kidney infection but at least for now she is home!

Saturday, November 15, 2014

SAS Day One Is A Success

Day one of my sister Pam's SAS is complete and a success!  She had two sessions yesterday and both were very successful.  There were 23 stampers yesterday and there will be about the same today.  There is only one session today but with the amount of people attending it will be a busy day.  I get to play instructor today with one of the cards.  There are a lot of steps to one of the cards  so I will be at that table to make sure everyone knows how to do the cards.  I made and will be making my Chicken Tortilla soup for lunch.   It was a success yesterday and I hope it will be today.  I have posted pictures of yesterday's event so check back tomorrow for an update and pictures of today's event.

Friday, November 14, 2014

SAS Prep Day

My sister Pam and I spent yesterday doing all the prep work for her SAS.  Her Holiday SAS (Stamp N Stack) is her largest event and today we have two groups coming at different times.  Usually she only has one on Friday and one on Saturday but for her holiday one she hosts a third session too.  So I  have been busy helping Pam get ready.  Today I am in charge of the food for the event.  For the past holiday events I have made chili but this time I am making my Chicken Tortilla Soup.  Let's hope the ladies like it!  I have also created some fun Doorprizes and decorations for the event.  One new decoration is a wreath made from candy canes.  I saw it on Pinterest and have wanted to try making it.  It turned out great.  Check back tomorrow and see how Day 1 went for Pam's Holiday SAS!

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Just Another Day Hanging With Mom

I spent yesterday with my mom at her skilled nursing facility.  She is getting better with each passing day and we are hoping she will be able to go home soon.  Thank you to all for your get well wishes and prayers.  Please keep them coming. On my drive home I noticed from San Clemente to Oceanside the view of the Pacific Ocean was really beautiful.  It was really blue yesterday so when I got to the vista lookout area I stopped for a quick view.  It really was a beautiful view.  It was a good day with my mom and I we enjoyed talking about past Thanksgivings and recipes.  I have been trying to get my mom to remember her stuffing recipe so I can make it for Thanksgiving but she just can't remember.  I will keep trying.  The next couple of days will be busy for Pam and I because this Friday and Saturday is Pam's Holiday SAS.  She has over 60 participants so it will be houseful.  We are almost ready.  Check back for the progress and outcome.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

The November Project

The November Project Part One is now the November Project.  Tim has been working very hard since I have been gone getting the washer, dryer and freezer all hooked up with electricity, water and gas.  He also installed a hot water heater for the washing machine.  Everything had to be run into the shed to make the washer, dryer and freezer work.  He is now working on insulating the inside of the shed.  Yesterday he sent me some pictures of what he has already finished.  The shed is looking really good and Tim is doing a great job.  Thank you Tim!
November was suppose to have two projects in it.  Originally Tim was also going to work on getting the golf cart going along with the shed but the cart has been postponed until December.  So the inside of the shed is the November project exclusively.  Since we have moved to the farm we have been pretty busy working on some big projects.  The September project was the Crafty Cottage.  That was a huge project that started with a shell of a building and when it was complete it became a fully functional craftroom/guesthouse.  I was going to put guest room but guesthouse sounds so much better.  The October project was the storage shed,  we built and then filled it which allowed us to move all of our items from a storage unit in Jacksonville, FL to the farm.  The October project started with a kit and we built a 10ft by 14ft storage shed.  Now Tim is finishing up on the insulating of the shed.  We do have several more projects Planned but they can wait for the new year.  All of these projects are stepping  stones for creating our home on the farm.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Veterans Day

Today I am thankful for all the veterans that served this great country so we could continue to live free and safe.  I have several veterans in my life starting with my husband Tim who has served in the Navy for 20 years.  Thank you Tim for your service. Thank you to my son in law, Nathan, for currently serving in the Air Force.  Thank you to my family that has served: Edward Winship, Jim Chafe, Jim Bell, and Daniel Gibbons.  Thank you to all of my friends who are serving or had served our country!  Last but not least, Thank you to all who have served or are serving now.  We are blessed because of your service.  So today, thank a veteran, they put there lives at stack for this country and for us.  There are several restaurants and stores offering free food or a percentage off of merchandise for veterans today and I think that is wonderful.  Thank you veterans and Happy Veterans Day to all.

Monday, November 10, 2014

It All Started With A Fortune Cookie Fortune

I had posted in yesterday's post that I went to PF Changs for dinner on a "Girls Night Out".  When the fortune cookies came I opened my fortune.  Now usually my fortunes mean nothing but the one I got Saturday said "something new on four wheels will be in your future".  I jokingly sent it to Tim because we have been discussing about getting a 4 wheel drive vehicle now that we live in Tennessee.
I guess Tim took that as a sign, along with several TV commercials because  yesterday  I got a big surprise when Tim called me while driving our new car.  By the way, it is legal to talk on your cell phone while driving in Tennessee.
Tim and I are now the proud owners of a Jeep Compass.  It has Four wheel drive which was a necessity and will now make it easier for us to get around on the mountain roads and in the winter. Tim sent me several pictures of our new car that I will post.  Now I can feel more comfortable driving the roads on my own and, since I have not driven in snow for over 20 years, I will feel a lot more comfortable driving in snow.  So, the next time you read a fortune from your fortune cookie don't take it too lightly; it could come true!

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Capistrano Beach And PF Changs

We, my sister and I, spent the day at Capistrano Beach, CA at the Capisrano Beach Care Center where my mom is now.  It looks like my mom will only be there for the week end.  My mom needs more care than this skilled nursing home can handle so we are hoping she will be moved to a Kindred Care Hospital.  Kindred care is a long term hospital that has more staff and doctors needed for patients like my mom.  My mom was in great spirits and we were able to get her up and even had her walking around a bit.  So Monday we are hoping she will move on to kindred care.
On our way back to Pam's house we hit traffic on Interstate I-5.  Yes, traffic in Southern California!  So, we got off I-5 at the Camp Pendleton exit and drove the rest of the way down South Pacific highway.  It was a beautiful day and so the drive was a very pretty one.
Last night we had a "Girl's Night Out" and had dinner with two of our friends Carrie and Lorraine.  We had a great time at dinner getting all caught up with eachother and enjoying some really good food.  It was a long day but a nice day  spending it with my mom, sister and friends!

Saturday, November 8, 2014

A Doorprize Day

While my sister was at work I spent the day in her craftroom working on Doorprizes for her upcoming SAS event next week end.  Not only does she serve food but everyone attending will receive a Doorprize.  Her Holiday SAS is a great deal: the participants will make 10 Christmas Cards and   a make and take, have lunch and dessert, win a Doorprize  and a chance to win extra prizes.  Not bad for $30 and a day of fun if you are a stamper.  This year there will be over 60 participants during this two day event.  It will be two long days for Pam as she will also be teaching some new techniques at the SAS and , as always, featuring new products from Stampin Up.  Pam does such a great job hosting her SAS's and I am so proud of her.  I feel very fortunate to be here and help her.  I help with the prep work and during the event and I am also the cook.  Pam does so much for me that I am always willing to help her however I can.
Today we will both be spending the day with our mom.  Mom is feeling so much better and although she still has a way to go before she is well she is getting better day by day.  My mom was just moved to a skilled nursing facility so we will be checking out her new place today. Tonight we have dinner with friends, a girl's night out, so we have a long day ahead of us.  Happy Saturday!

Friday, November 7, 2014

The Shed Toys Are Almost Ready!

Okay by toys I mean the Washer and dryer!  But not having my own washer and dryer for the past few years it is almost like a toy right now.  I know, give it a month and the "shed toys" will become just another task.  For now, it is exciting.  Since I have be gone from the farm There has been a lot of activities going on.  Tim has been working hard in the shed adding all of the items needed to get the washer and dryer going including installing a hot water heater.  He sent me a couple of pictures of his work.  Thanks Tim, it is looking great!  While Tim has been busy working in the shed George and Lisa's house has also had some major activities going on.  They have started getting all the different contractors out to measure, order and install all the tile, wall rock and gas lines for their house.  The goal, to be in the house by Thanksgiving.  I think it is a reachable goal and I am anxious to see all the changes when I get back.
Yesterday I spent the day with my mom.  I have not said much about what is going on with my mom but she has been fighting a kidney infection and has been in the hospital for a few weeks now.  After spending the day with her at the hospital she has been transferred to a skilled nursing home for rehab!  Hopefully she will get better soon so she can go home.  She is ready to go home!  Please say a little pray for my mom!  Thank you Craig and Pam for all you have done for Mom during this time.  I know how tough it is as I have experienced all it takes to do so too.  Love you Mom!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Jet Lag Is A Bummer

I never thought jet lag effected me before but it sure did yesterday.  I did sleep well so I should not have been tired but I just could not get going yesterday morning.  I was working on some projects for my sister and I felt like all the energy was sucked out of me.  After lunch I felt more energized and then after dinner, all of a sudden I woke up.  I was able to finish up a project for  Pam.  Now she can relax a little.
Today I am going to drive up to Mission Viejo, CA to visit my mom who is still in the hospital. She knows I am coming but then she may have forgotten so it could turn into a surprise. I guess I will find out a little later.  It has been a little over three months since I have seen my mom so I am looking forward to seeing and spending time with my mom.  Check back and see how it went!

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Hello San Diego!

I am in San Diego!  I had an early morning start yesterday, I was up at 4:00 am to get ready and leave for the airport by 5:30.  We had to drive to Knoxville to catch my first flight to Atlanta.  The Knoxville airport is small but nice and very friendly,  even the TSAs were friendly and helpful.  I was lucky enough to get precheck for security which makes it so much easier to go through security.  My flight took off on time but with it being a 30 minute flight we got into Atlanta 30 minutes early.  The flight was short but beautiful.  We flew over the Smokey Mountains and it was quite a view.  What a difference airports make, Knoxville was quiet and relaxed and Atlanta was busy and hectic.  I had a couple of hours to kill in Atlanta so I had some breakfast and charged my iPad and iPhone before boarding the flight to San Diego.  The San Diego flight was packed.  I flew Delta this time and at least they do serve beverages twice and you get peanuts, pretzels or a cookie.   Flying West I did seem some cool things but being over the wing made it hard to see and a challenge to photograph but I got a couple of pics. It was cool to see Balboa park from the air when we were landing in San Diego. My sister was there waiting for me at the airport, it is so good to be with my sister and brother in law and they have both been great hosts making me feel right at home. Thanks Pam and Brian.  I will be here for a couple of weeks so check back and see what I do!

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

I Am Ready

I am packed and ready to go!  I fly to San Diego, CA today to spend the next couple of weeks with my sister and brother in law, Pam and Brian.  They are very gracious hosts and I always have a great time when I am with them.  I will also get to spend time with my Mom and my brother and sister in law, Craig and Karyn.  This is an early Birthday present for me and I am looking forward to it.  My sister and I are very close and we always have a great time together.  I am also going to help her with her Holiday SAS which is her biggest event of the year.
I left yesterday's post with a question on whether I would go with a smaller suitcase or check a bag.  Well, I am going with a smaller suitcase which means I am limited with clothing, a HUGE move for me.  What is even more of a surprise is I was packed before dinner last night.  Even my back pack is ready to go.  So, we are heading out to drive to Knoxville to catch my flight.
Tim is staying home with Shadow and will be working on two major projects, 1) running the water, electrical and gas lines for the washer, dryer and freezer And getting them all hooked up and ready for use and 2) working on the golf cart so we will be able to use it.  So he will be busy.  I will be blogging on his projects while I am in California just to make sure that I stay up to date on just another day at the farm.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Another Day Of Organizing

Tim and I spent most of the day unpacking and organizing more of our "stuff" that was in storage. I worked in the RV finding places for our pictures, books and photo albums and Tim worked on getting the storage shed and RV basement more organized. After lunch I moved down to the Crafty Cottage to get things organized. I had a few more crates to go thorugh from the "stuff" that was in storage. I then began to work on some more items for my sister's SAS. I leave tomorrow for California to visit my sister and brother in law, Pam and Brian, my mom and my brother and sister in law, Craig and Karyn. Of course I will also be able to see several of the friends I have met during my previous visits to California. Pam is flying me in as my Birthday present, early, and so I can help her with her Holiday SAS, which is her biggest event of the year for her. This year, I got to design some of the cards that will be made and I usually do the cooking for the event. Of course while I am also there, I will be spending a lot of time with my Mom, who has been in the hospital for the past couple of weeks with kidney problems and an infection. We are hoping she will be released soon as she is getting better and stronger with each passing day. So today I will be getting packed and I am trying something new with my suitcase. I am an over packer and I always pack too much, so on this trip I am going to try and use a small suitcase so I will not have to check my bag. This is a big move for me and I am not sure whether I can do it. The reason I am able to do this is that my sister has all of the toiletries and I did leave some clothes at her house. So, wish me luck with the packing and check back tomorrow to see if I was able to do it or if I changed my mind and will check a bag!

Sunday, November 2, 2014

It Snowed!

Yesterday, Nov. 1st, we woke up to snow. The first snow fall of the season and an early snow fall at that. The mountains around this area usually don't get snow until December. The higher peaks, espcially the ones in Smokey Mountains National Park got up to 14 inches of snow. Interstate I-40 was even shut down for a while due to the amount of snow that fell. It was beautiful to wake up to and eventhough it was cold I really did not mind it because it was beautiful. Shadow had a lot of fun running around in the snow. Shadow has been in snow before but never when it was actually snowing and he was so cute jumping up trying to catch snowflakes. I posted a video on Facebook. After spending about an hour admiring the snow and eventually getting cold enough we went in and had a nice breakfast. Greeneville was having a Holiday Bazaar so we all loaded into the car, after breakfast, and while Lisa and I were at the Bazaar Tim and George ran to Lowes and Staples. Th Holiday Bazaar was great, I even got some more Christmas presents. There were a lot of great booths and I also picked up some ideas that I will be working on for Christmas gifts. The snow is gone now but the cold is still here. It is a cool 30 degrees with a high of 47 today. I am hoping the sun comes out sometime today. On our way back from Greeeneville we cross over the Nolichucky River and it is one of the prettiest views for an overpass. Yesterday we stopped and took pictures, something I have wanted to do for a while, and they turned out pretty good. So, we have now experienced our first snow fall at the farm just a little earlier than expected. I will post some snow and river pictures. Happy Sunday!

Saturday, November 1, 2014

The Storage Shed Is A Little Fuller

We unloaded the truck and we put everything in the storage shed and we were really glad to see it did not even come close to filling up the storage shed.  After putting everything in the shed we then went to Newport to pick up George and Lisa's new Freezer and had lunch at Ruby Tuesday's; I love their salad bar.  When we got back I got to work and unpacked all of our good dishes and stemware that has been in storage for four years.  I washed everything them put it all away in one of the cabinets in the RV.  I still have all the pictures and photo albums to unpack but I have plenty of room for those too.  It will be good to have all our things reachable again.  Now I can start using my dishes for special occasions.
After getting the dishes put away, we moved all of my craft boxes down to the Crafty Cottage to be put away today or tomorrow.  I have a lot more to go through and organize. Some of my craft supplies are for Christmas gifts I am planning make and I will have to make a spot to put them in temporarily. It was a productive day and it feels good to have all of our "stuff" again.
We woke up to snow this morning.  It is still dark outside so pictures will be posted tomorrow.  I know the snow won't last long but it is pretty to see it.  The Smokey Mountains were predicted to get 8 - 12 inches so the mountains we look at should be snow capped.  Check back for the snow pictures. Happy Saturday!

Friday, October 31, 2014

Happy Halloween

Happy Halloween!  I hope you have a fun and safe one.  I carved my pumpkin, first one done without my kids, and I have my pumpkin seeds drying.  The seeds are the reason I carve a pumpkin.  I have always loved pumpkin seeds and this is the first time in the last four years that I have had any, Yum!  After a busy day yesterday I finally got the time to get to the pumpkin.  I bought the pumpkin from Carver's last week end.  I did not make any fancy face or pumpkin carving.  Just a plain and simple face that I have been doing for years. After the pumpkin was done I placed a candle inside the pumpkin and burned it which made it festive in here. I know we will not have any trick or treaters but we will manage to have some Halloween fun here on the farm!  Happy Halloween!

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Home In Tennessee

We are back home in Tennessee and the good news is that we had an uneventful trip.  We did get everything loaded, from our storage unit, into the truck and we were on the road by 10:30.  We would of left earlier but we had to wait for the storage office to open up so we could cancel our unit.  Tim decided not to place a tarp over our things and luckily we did not need to because we were rain free.  Our trip home was a little longer only because we kept the speed down because of the load we had.  I will include a picture of the truck.  We only stopped twice on the way back; a gas/lunch break and a rest stop.  We pulled into our driveway at 7:00pm where we were welcomed by Shadow!  Lisa and George had dinner waiting too, it is nice to be home.  Thank you Lisa  and George for taking care of Shadow while we were gone.  It made the trip so much easier and we really do appreciate it!
The highlight of our trip was the fall colors in North Carolina.  It was beautiful and it has been over 20 years since I have seen colors like that in person, Wow! I tried to get pictures but the camera did not do the view justice.
Today we get to unpack the truck and put everything away either in the RV, the storage shed or the Crafty Cottage.  Woo Hoo, we will have some fun today!  I am anxiously awaiting to see all my dishes, pictures and photo albums that have been stored these last 4 years.  Hopefully I will put them away and not create a mess because I was too busy looking at everything.  Check back tomorrow to see what survived and what we may need to dispose of!  Also, the view here is getting colorful and hopefully I will get some nice pictures to share with you!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

A Productive Day In Jax

We started our day with breakfast at the hotel then headed out to pick up Carrie.  We then went to NAS Jacksonville to get our new IDs.  It turned out Tim did not have to get a new one just me.  When we pulled into the parking lot the lot was almost full. We did not have an appointment so we thought that it was going to take awhile.  So we signed in and as we entered the waiting room we were pleasantly surprised to see it was relatively empty, yay!  I waited about 5 minutes, my name was called and 10 minutes later we were done and I walked out with my new ID.  Wow and thanks NAS Jax IDs I thought 4 years ago was fast but this time it was too!  So, with the IDs done we headed up to our storage locker.  Do we know how to have a good time in Jax or what?
We have not been to the storage locker since last March and we knew it was full. We expected to be there all day so we got started pulling everything out to go through it one more time before packing it up and taking it to Tennessee.  As Tim pulled out the boxes and crates Carrie and I went through them and organizing them by keep, sell (Carrie will take care of that) and trash. We did eliminate a few things but took all the clothes and several stamps to Carrie's house to go through.  We were done by Noon which surprised us. We loaded up the truck with the sell and trash items and locked up the storage unit one last time.
We headed back to Middleburg, where things have changed greatly since we lived here, had lunch at Chick Fil-A then headed to Carrie's house.  I am proud to say that after going through the clothing and stamps that I am leaving 90% of it with Carrie.  For me to give up a stamp is a miracle.  We spent a nice day with Carrie eventhough we were working.  As we were going through things lots of memories and stories were shared.
We met Daniel after work and headed to La Nopalera for the best Mexican food ever!  La Nop is one of our favorite places to eat when we are home.  We thought the food at Loco fresh Mex in Gatlinburg was equal to La Nop but after having La Nop just a few days later we were wrong.  La Nop is still the best!  We did run into some friends at La Nop including the person who hired me at Toys R Us when we moved to Jacksonville 24 years ago.
I was hoping to get a chance to visit more friends but this was a short visit and we will catch them when I return in December.  Thanks Carrie for hanging out with us.  We sure did enjoy our time together even if we did not do much.  So it is time to say "so long" to the Jacksonville area.  We will we loading up our truck this morning and head back up to Tennessee.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Hello Jacksonville

We have returned to where we started our last journey, Jacksonville, FL.  We left Jacksonville last March to begin our Grandparents 2 Be journey and now we have returned to our home town where we have lived and raised our kids for over 20 years.  On our drive to Jacksonville we had some beautiful views.  Going through the mountains of North Carolina the changing of the leaves is absolutely gorgeous.  I tried to take pictures but the pictures did not show how beautiful the mountains were covered in oranges, yellows and red hues.  As we traveled south the warmer the weather got and when we got to Jacksonville it was 88 degrees.  It is suppose to be that warm while we are here.  We are staying at Fairfield Inn and Suites where Carrie got us a nice room at a family discount.  We spent the rest of the day with Carrie and Daniel then had dinner with friends.
Today we have to go to NAS Jacksonville to renew our Military IDs then head up to our storage unit to clean out what we do not want to take up to Tennessee.  We are hoping to see more friends later on today.  It is good to be back home and to be with Carrie and Daniel again! Hello Jacksonville!

Monday, October 27, 2014

A Few Surprises!

In yesterday's blog I had posted that I came home to a big surprise so before I tell you what the surprise is let me tell you that the October Project is complete.  Our storage shed is built and it turned out great.  Tim and George put it in place on Saturday so when I got home from the festivals the shed was in place and it looks great. As I was about to go inside the shed I saw my surprises.  Tim had gone out and purchased a new washer, dryer and freezer.  Tim and George went shopping at Lowes where they came across a great deal on close out items.  With new models were coming in so the old ones had to go and so for the price of what the washer would have been at full retail we were able to get the washer, dryer and freezer.  Thanks Tim, I was not expecting any of these for a while.
The shed was a big project for Tim and I and it took both of us to put it together.  The roof was tough and it took a lot longer than we thought but we got it done in the two days we had planned for it.  The shed looks great and it is big.  We built a 10ft x 14ft barn roof shed that will give us plenty of space for the washer, dryer, freezer, storage and more.
So, with shed complete we are headed down to the Jacksonville area to clear out our storage unit and bring it back to the farm.  We have used this storage unit since we sold our home over four years ago so it will be nice to have our things with us and not have to pay the monthly fee.  While we are in the Jacksonville area we will be with Carrie and hopefully see some friends too.  So with the shed complete and the surprised announced all I can say is "here we come Jacksonville".

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Two More Fall Festivals!

Lisa and I went to two fall festivals yesterday.  We first drove to Del Rio, TN to go to Del Rio Days.  It was the 29th Annual Del Rio Days and also Cocke county's last fall fest for 2014.  Del Rio Days was held at the Jones Nature Center and featured live music, country crafts, food, fun and contests.  We did not spend too much time at Del Rio Days because we had seen most of the booths from the three other fall festivals we attended the last three weeks.  It was a good one we just got there early, there were no crowds yet, so we were able to see everything quicker.
After we left Del Rio Days we headed to Morristown, TN to attend Mountain Makins Festival.  It is the 39th annual fall festival in Morristown and was held at the Rose Center, an 1892 school that is now Morristown's cultural arts center and historical museum.  Mountain Makins is a week end for life festival celebrating the traditions of Appalachia through music, dance, fine arts, crafts, storytelling, demonstrations, children activities, food and more.  It was well attended and we payed an entrance fee to get in.  The demonstrations were interesting, the crafts were incredible and we got some Christmas shopping done!  Our neighbor, Cheryl, had a booth and does some incredible wood working. I bought a piece for someone for Christmas.  Hmm, I wonder who?
We had a great day and then Lisa and I came home, grabbed our laundry and headed to the launder mat  in Parrottsville.  We had put off the laundry long enough.  I know, what a way to end a fun filled day!  I did come home to a really nice surprise but you will have to wait and check back tomorrow to see what it was.  Thanks Lisa for a nice day together and thanks Tim and George for my surprise!

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Gatlinburg, Tennessee

We took a short road trip yesterday to Gatlinburg, TN. It was Tim's Birthday so instead of working at the farm we all took the day off and headed to Gatlinburg. George and Lisa joined the Birthday boy and I for the day. They had been to Gatlinburg several times. This was the second time I have been to Gatlinburg (TLC Tour) but this was Tim's first time. Lisa and I wanted to go to Gatlinburg to visit the Craftman"s Fall Festival going on at Gatlinburg's Convention Center. It was full of artisans and their beautiful work. We did some shopping but I cannot show you what we got because most of the items are Christmas presents. We did get a couple of really cute decorations for our mail boxes but you will just have to wait and see them when it is time to put them up. Lisa bought Thanksgiving and Christmas so your wait won't be too long to see one of them. After we left the Convention Center we walked around Gatlinburg; it is definately a tourist destination and there is a lot of things to do. We were on a mission, to find a place to eat. Since it was Tim's Birthday he chose to eat at Loco Burro Fresh Mex Cantina. We wanted to sit out on the patio or roof top but it was too long of a wait so we ate at one of the high tops instead. The restaurant was cutely decorated and the chips and salsa were good. We ordered some queso dip and that was really good. The food was good but the service was a little slow and we were in there during a quiet time. After lunch we walked around Gatlinburg and did some shopping. Gatlinburg is a mountain resort city in Sevier County, TN. It's nickname is "Gateway to the Smokey Mountains" because it borders the Great Smokey Mountains National Park. Gatlinburg is surrounded by high mountain ridges; Le Conte and Sugarland Mountains to the south, Cove Mountain to the west, Big Ridge to the northeast and Grapeyard Ridge to the east. U.S. Route 441 is the major road running through town and was once the route the Cherokee and early settlers would follow from North Carolina to Tennessee. Gatlinburg was first settled by William Ogle in early 1801 but when he returned home to South Carolina to bring his family back he died of malaria in 1803. His wife and grown children, along with her brother, came to settle in the area in 1806. Some of their ancestors still live in the area today. Gatlinburg was named for Radford Gatlin in 1856 when he established a post office in his general store. Most of the residents hated Gatlin but the name of the town was never changed. Today Gatlinburg is a popular tourist destination and yesterday was no exception. It was busy but that did not stop us from having a good time there. There is still a lot of Gatlinburg we have not seen yet so we will be returning soon; especially during the Christmas season. The town gets decorated with lights and they are everywhere! Tim had a great birthday and I am glad we did something special for him. Today Lisa and I are going to visit our fourth and fifth fall festival. For the past three week ends we have gone to a fall fest but this week end there are two. Depending on how good they are we will either see one today and one tomorrow or both today. Check back and see which way we went!

Friday, October 24, 2014

Happy Birthday Tim!!!

Today is Tim's Birthday and so I want to take this day to honor him. Tim and I have been together for over 32 years (we have been married 31 years) and he is the best husband, father, grandfather and friend. We have two beautiful daughters and one gorgeous granddaughter. We have shared so much together over the years and we still enjoy being together. Tim has a huge heart and will do almost anything to make sure his family is taken care of. He is also a good friend and if you are one of his friends you know what I mean. We have shared so many different journeys in our life together from the several different duty stations during Tim's military career to our current travels these past four years across this great country we live in. Now we are enjoying our current journey of living in eastern Tennessee and lving a rural life. We appreciate George and Lisa for giving us the opportunity to do so and these past couple of months Tim has been working so hard at making things as nice as it can be. I have my beautiful Crafty Cottage due to Tim and shortly (tomorrow) we will finish our storage shed. Thank you Tim for everything you do for me, our family and friends. I love you and wish you a very Happy Birthday! Today we are headed to Gatlinburg for a fun day in honor of Tim's Birthday. Tim has never been to Gatlinburg and there is a Craftman's show going on in Gatlinburg so we are going to go and enjoy today and celebrate Tim's Bithday! Happy Birthday Tim!!!

Thursday, October 23, 2014

The Storage Shed is Halfway Done

Tim did all of the pre work for the shed prior to us putting the walls up yesterday day. The instructions said once you get to the wall stage start early and plan on not stopping until the walls are up and support beams are in. The instructions were correct! Tim and I started at 9:00 am yesterday morning and by 6:00 pm we were done. Thank you George and Lisa for helping us out in the morning with the shed. Had they not have given us a hand Tim and I would of been out there for a couple more hours. We started with the four corners then the support bars for the sides then moved to putting up the walls. Around lunch time the power drill ran out of juice so we stopped and plugged it in to get a charge while we had lunch. After lunch, Tim and I worked the rest of the afternoon. The drill did not get fully charged so we had to do a lot of the afternoon work the old fashioned style - manually with a screwdriver. We finally got to a point where we could quit for the day and the storage shed is looking pretty good. Today we start the roof, which might be a little tricky, so we will see how that goes. Once again, once we start we cannot stop until the whole roof is completed. With the storage shed looking like it will be done today we are planning on traveling to Jacksonville on Monday to clear out our storage locker. Yay, I will have all of our things with us in one place! That hasn't happen since we sold our house in 2010! While we are in Jacksonville we will also have to get new military ID cards (mine is expiring soon and Tim's needs to be updated)and see our family and friends. We will only be there for a couple of days and while we are there Lisa and George have offered to take care of Shadow for us so he won't be making the trip with us. I hope we can get everything from the storage unit into the truck. If not I will have to make some decisions of what to get rid of. Time will tell! Check back tomorrow for progress on the storage shed and have a great day!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

We Have A Fireplace!

We went to Lowes and Walmart and found a wood burning stove/fireplace heater.  It is the perfect size for the RV and it makes the RV feel homier.  We had looked at something similar at Home Depot a few weeks ago but it was 85 degrees outside and it wasn't inviting enough to think about.  Now that it is beginning to get cooler (high 50's low 60's during the day and high 40's at night) we decided it might be time to get a little more serious.  Lowes did not have anything we were looking for but when we got to Walmart they had a huge selections of room heaters.  We were looking at towers, small heaters, etc but thought the "wood" burning stove would add a warm and cozy touch to the RV and it did.  I will post a couple of pictures of it.  So, while I am writing this blog I am sitting in front of the "fire", nice and warm, listening to a pack of coyotes howling.  We have heard them more and more lately.  We have seen a lot of deer and wild turkeys and have heard coyotes and owls.  Sometimes I can hear a cow making a screaming sound like it is getting killed or raped.  When this happens it is usually late at night or really early in the morning and can sometimes freak me out.  I guess it is just part of rural life!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

The Progress Continues

The October project - the building of our storage shed, continues. Tim has made some great progress and thank you George for helping Tim. The base and floor for the shed is complete. Tim spent the last couple of days building and insulating the floor and last night, fighting the dark, he completed attaching the metal floor frame to the floor base. The next step is to start assembling the rest of the shed. I will definately be involved with this because there is no way Tim can do it by himself. Lisa and George have offered to help which will be great because this next phase will be kind of like a barn raising. Tim said the instructions suggested that this next step should be started first thing as it will take all day to complete. So, will we have a barn raising today? It is a possibility. So far, Tim has done a great job on the shed; thanks Tim, it looks great! I have been busy finishing up some cards for my sister Pam's SAS. I finihed up the last of the cards yesterday. Have I mentioned how much I love my Crafty Cottage? The last couple of days my creativity has been flowing since I began working in my cottage. So, with that task complete I am ready to help Tim with whatever he needs me to do with the shed. Check back as see the progress!

Monday, October 20, 2014

The October Project Has Begun!

Our October project is building our Storage Shed. So far Tim has done all of the work on it with George helping him at times. Tim first had to dig out some of the hill so that the shed would fit in the area that it is going to be located. The shed will be used for storage but will also house our washer and dryer and freezer. So it will be right next to the RV. Tim did all the digging by hand using a pick axe and a shovel. Now that the space has been made he has started to put the floor frame together and then he decided to build a sub floor to give the shed more support and to provide a strong base for the appliances that wil be in the shed. We chose to build a metal storage shed due to cost and the space we could have in the shed. Yesterday Tim and George got the base floor built and seeing the floor makes it real as to how big the shed will be. I could put my Crafty Cottage inside the storage shed. We chose a barn roof for headroom and looks. Tim also read that we can buy an "attic kit" for the shed so we will be ordering that so we will have even more storage space. This week will be devoted to building the rest of the shed. The goal is to finish it up by the week end so we can go down to Jacksonville to clean out our storage unit down there next week. While in the Jacksonville area we also look forward to visiting family and friends. Check back for the progress of the October Project - the storage shed!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

On Cosby Festival

We went to the 18th Annual On Cosby Festival in Cosby, TN. It is the best fall festival that we have been to so far this year. It had lots of craft vendors, food vendors and live entertainment during the entire day. It is a three day fall festival located on Cosby Creek (On Cosby). It was set up in it's Visitor's Center and the area around it. There was plenty of parking with extra events going on during the festival. On Friday it was kids day with lots of rides and kid events going on. Saturday, the day we attended, there was a Car Show and a Beauty Pagent going on. Today, Sunday, there is a "Moonshine Run" and a Dog Show. The Car Show had some really nice cars in it and we had a great time looking at all the crafters booths. I did some more Christmas shopping and picked up some baked goods too. Lisa and George even found their dining room table and chairs there. The furniture crafter had some beautiful furniture and they had the perfect size dining table for Lisa and George's new house. It was a beautiful day, cool but sunny and I have to say that there are a lot of friendly people here in Tennessee. I really enjoyed seeing so many different crafts and I enjoyed chating with the artisians. We had a great time at On Cosby!

Saturday, October 18, 2014

The Crafty Cottage is Offically Open!

I moved all of my stamping and craft supplies into the Crafty Cottage. It took all day but it is done and now I can work and not worry about the RV getting messy. For four years, every time I stamped or crafted the RV would be a cluttered mess because of all the items that had to come out of the cabinets to craft with. Now I have my own craftroom again and I will be able to have everything available. I was able to use George and Lisa's Gator to move everything down to the cottage so that helped a lot; Thanks George and Lisa! It took me about 10 loads but it is all moved and the 12 cabinets that occuppied my stamping and craft items in the RV are now open. We now have lots of storage in the RV for things that are in our storage unit in Jacksonville that we will move up here once the storage shed is built. In the RV I still have four cabinets that have books and electronics in them and one craft cabinet that I am going to keep all of my cross stitch stuff in mostly because I work on that in the RV at night anyway. As I moved items I also tried to organize them. I know in the next couple of weeks I will be reorganizing things but that will be a never ending battle as I contiune to work on things. I know I do have more stuff in the storage unit in Jacksonville that will be brought into the cottage so I will be moving some things around for those but as for now, I am moved in and ready to get busy on making some cards and paper crafts! Today we are headed to "On Cosby" a Fall Festival in Cosby, TN. It is suppose to be one of the best ones in the area and the weather is suppose to be nice, cool but nice. We may even go to a pumpkin patch too! Check back and see what we did!