Thursday, December 31, 2015

This and that...

After many months of being on the edge of storms and cold weather, winter arrived here Monday night and into Tuesday morning. Judging from the amount of snow I shoveled from the back porch I'd say we got about 8 to 10 inches of the white stuff. Ish. After helping us dig out Colton left to head back to River Falls for work. It was really nice having him home.

For Christmas I received two cast iron skillets from the Hubby. I've never used anything like them before. You have no idea how heavy they are. I swore the big one was 20 pounds so I had Caden weigh it for me. Turned out it was only seven pounds, but damn it is a heavy seven pounds I tell you.

Seasoning them was a stinky affair. I swear that stench is still lingering in the house from when we did it last Sunday. 

I've learned a few things about them already - You can't use plastic spoons or spatulas in them - duh right? but hell who has metal cooking utensils? I didn't, but do now.

I've only used them a few times and I really like they way food cooks in them. Fajitas seem to have a more authentic "mexican" type flavor like you'd get from a restaurant. Grilled cheese sandwiches made with my much longed for Tillamock cheese (that my eldest son got me for Christmas) was absolutely the best grilled cheese I've ever had. 

Cleaning the skillets have been interesting too. How do you not use a shit load of soap to clean something you've cooked in and is dirty? Apparently it can be done with just a stiff brush and hot water, but don't forget to dry that pan well or it could rust. Stay tuned for more adventures in cooking with cast iron.

It's always been our tradition to leave the Christmas tree up until the weekend after New Years. Which in a typical year, when we put it up the weekend of Thanksgiving is about a week too long for me. This year however we put it up late and I ended up taking it down on Tuesday after the cats totally demolished it. Damn cats. They obviously thought the tree was the only play place in the house. Good for ambushing unaware people walking by and scaring the crap out of them to lounging on the branches and falling from their perch and knocking more branches out. sigh. 

I had a unexpected phone call from one of my Uncles the other night. I hadn't talked to him in probably 10 years. He was calling to tell me how much the Christmas card I sent meant to him. How's that for sweet. It really made my day hearing from him and ensures that I will continue sending cards. I had contemplated not doing them this year since I was running so behind in everything. Sure am glad I stuck with it and got them out.

Hope you all have a safe New Years! 
later :)

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Sunday AM coffee and the Christmas review

I hope you all had an enjoyable holiday with friends and family.

 We've had a great holiday weekend.

Christmas eve I was saying good night to Caden and he declares that I haven't read him a Christmas story, which is something I've done on Christmas eve since Colton was a baby. 
Of course all the little kid books have been packed or given away and I didn't have a book handy to read. 
So I winged it. 
My story went something like this:

Twas the night before Christmas and all through the house not a creature was stirring - not even that damn mouse who ate the toilet paper and shit all over in the upstairs bathroom cabinet.
Stockings were hung in our dining room with care.
Two of my children were snug in their beds while the eldest was gallivanting across the state at his girlfriends family celebration. 
I had just settled in for for the night when out on the lawn there arouse such a clatter, I ran to the window and what to my amazement do I see? That rotten Scotch has broken through the fence and he and the other horses are running like fools through the newly fallen snow!
Out the door I fly to round those ponies up, trudging through the snow in just my nightie and slippers. Cussing and groaning as I slipped and slid, for there was ice under that newly fallen snow.
Finally the fence was fixed and the horses securely behind the fence, I limped and trudged back to my bed. Where I warmed my cold feet up on the Hubbys warm ass!
Not too bad, right? lol
The kids got a laugh out of it anyhow.
Colton and the girlfriend made it back at 230a safe and sound.

A few pic from the day:

Found the best shirt for Caden. It says if wrestling were easy they'd call it basketball.
He sure misses basketball and the comrade of hanging out with his buddies. Next year we'll see what happens I guess. I don't think I mentioned it, but he tried out for the school play - Peter Pan and got a part as one of the lost boys. He is really excited about that. They start rehearsals in January sometime. 

Colton, the girlfriend and Dodger.

The Hubby and I showing off our treasures from my folks.
I'll have to take a picture of the stained glass when the light is shining through it, you wont believe how gorgeous it is!

Christmas night we watched old family videos. Seriously I have not laughed and cried so much in a long time! The tape we watched was from 10 years ago. Colton was 13, same age as Caden now so he was three then. Chyann was eight and had recently had an operation on her legs and was in a wheelchair for most of the videos. Crimaney Caden was a wild man! Colton was spouting off the funniest random stuff and Chyann looked like a fragile doll with the sweetest smile even while enduring the worst kind of torture for a kid - broken bones and being trapped in a wheelchair.
It was a wonderful end to the day watching those videos. We've sure got good kids. They are the best of both of us and we couldn't be more proud of them.

The only thing that would have made this holiday better for me, would have been being with my folks. I really missed all parts of our family. Mom and Gerry. Dad and Jeanne. Jeff and his family.  
Hopefully we can work something out for the next holiday season or another time during the year.
You know, like maybe Chyann's graduation!

Another short week for me as we head into the last week of December. 
It's only Sunday and I'm already looking forward to Wednesday at 2p when I'm off again lol

Have a good one!

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Sunday AM coffee

We had several inches of rain earlier in the week, complete with thunder, lightning and a brief power outage. 
Then the next day temps that barely made it to 20*.
A warm up is on the way for this coming week, possibly back up to the 40's if you can imagine that. 
No white Christmas here and that's just fine with me.

Finally made it out shopping this weekend. The crowds and traffic weren't as bad as I expected them to be thankfully. 
Chyann went with me Friday and Caden Saturday.
I enjoyed spending time with them so much. Talking about random stuff and singing along to the radio.
Chyann even bought me lunch and that thrilled the hell out of me!

Her graduation is fast approaching and is a reality people.
Made even more so by purchasing the cap/gown and tassel this week.


Wrapping, baking and doing the Christmas cards await me today.

Got a start on the cards last night, but didn't make it too far. 
I've got this address book that I've had for probably 20 years. It's got Pooh bear on the front.
The kids have all doodled in it - made their mark one might say. There are little notes in it next to their friends name, cute drawings of pickachu and horses, smiley faces and many practice attempts at writing cursive.
Lots of names in my book. 
Sad to see so many who have passed away and folks that we no longer keep in touch with. 
Time moves on and changes happen. Sometime we aren't even aware of it either.

The two big kids are done with their college finals!
Colton feels like he did well on all his finals except maybe one. 
He has had a tough first semester and it's finally over. 
We are sure proud of him taking on all that he has  - school full time and working almost full time hours for the first time. That's a lot for anyone to do.
He will be home on Wednesday evening for five whole days.
It will be wonderful having him home.
That feeling of contentment, having them all under the same roof. 
Knowing they are all safe and sound.

Chyann passed her final with a B and ended her first college tour with an A. 
She will be taking three classes next semester along with her regular high school courses. 

Chyann the cat charmer.
Picture from a few weeks ago.

Work has been busy recently and I'm really looking forward to having four day weekends for the next two weeks.

Have a good one :)

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Sunday AM coffee

I got up too early for a Sunday.
Being roused from sleep by the thumping and scurrying of cats tearing down the hallway is always annoying.
Come to find out though, one of them had caught a mouse and others wanted a piece of it too.
Lots of growling going on.
Least they are earning their keep by making sure those rotten mice have no opportunity to make a home in my house.  

We finally got the artificial tree up on Friday evening - not decorated yet, but it is UP.
Damn cats continue to try climbing it. 
This morning after disposing of the mouse I find that they have somehow removed/dislodged multiple branches from the tree and one of the branches is missing.
No idea where it is and how exactly they managed to drag it off remains a mystery.

It has been an interesting morning to be sure. 
It's raining again.
Might get up to two inches of rain within the next day or so. 
Good thing that's not snow or we'd be buried in it.

The middle school choir put on a wonderful concert at the nursing home on Friday. 

I attempted to upload a video of a song, but apparently it was too big of a file for my computer to load. Seriously what a pain in the ass. I attempt to open the file, it looks like the video will load but nope, the whole computer shuts down.
Restart-a-rama here.

Anyhow yesterday was the first of the seasons wrestling tournaments. 
Somehow I had forgotten how hard and fast my heart thunders when Caden steps out onto that mat to wrestle. 
I know he was nervy and didn't sleep well the night before. Anxious for the first real wrestling of the season I suppose.

This was the first tourney we'd been to outside of Regional's where they actually weighed each kid, inspected their nails and skin before checking them in. They even wrote their weight on their arms, not quite sure what that was about though. Caden weighted in at 87.7 and wrestled at 88. That is 10 pounds he has gained since March.

He almost had this match.
 He was ahead by 4 points when bang it was over and he'd lost by 1 point.
I'm proud of the fact that Caden has such good sportsmanship. Not like some kids you see at these tourneys who cry and holler when they've lost.
In fact between matches he and this boy visited and talked wrestling.
Likely they will wrestle each other again at some point.

A lot of wrestling is state of mind I think.
Playing in your mind what you learned from prior matches and how you'll use that information in the next match. 
Caden was not going to loose again apparently.
He totally dominated this match, winning by pin in the first minute.
Short videos will load :)

My boy is triumphant! 

2nd place on the day!

He says next time he will take 1st and get that big pewter trophy!
There aren't any tourneys close until after the first of the year and then it really heats up.
Can't wait!!


Thursday, December 10, 2015

Thirsty Thursday

13 more shopping days till Christmas.
I'm a little further ahead than I was than the last time we spoke.
Not much, but a little. 
I sure love Amazon prime.
Only problem with online ordering is we actually have deliveries, which means Dodger acts like a big scary dog. Barking like a fool and looking menacing - the drivers all think he wants to eat them. 
Dodge has been spending some quality time with me during the day.
Check out the silhouette of the horse that sits in my window. 

We almost broke records today. 
It was up to 47* at our house before the rain began. 
Rain in December you say? Yep. 
I was talking to a gal at work on a call earlier - she said she hoped it hurried up and got cold so we'd have snow for Christmas. I said are you out of your mind?! No snow is a wonderful thing in my opinion. 

The view from my back porch last night. 

Tomorrow I'm going to see Caden and the 7 & 8 grade choir preform at our local nursing home. I'm really looking forward to it. 
Chyann is a bit cranky about it though. 
See since I work at home "my" vehicle has gotten sucked into the family collective. Which about 99.9999% of the time is not an issue; however on days like tomorrow I need wheels.
 I could use the truck, but it is full of wood that didn't get unloaded this week. The Hubby had an abscessed tooth that took off on him and he ended up having oral surgery on Tuesday so no, he didn't much feel like unloading the truck and I felt more like riding horses than unloading it. 
Chyann had the option of me chauffeuring her to school tomorrow or riding the bus. 
She chose the chauffeuring option, but as she says that's bullcrap.
Well whatever. 
She hasn't had to ride the bus all year so I'd call that pretty damn fortunate. 
Can you believe it's only a smidgen more than a month and she'll be 18?

later folks

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Sunday AM coffee

We've had wonderfully mild weather this weekend. 
It was damn near 50* yesterday. Probably wont get that warm today, but it'll be close. 
The only problem with this warmer weather is the Asian beetles/lady bugs and ticks. They are just not going AWAY! What a pain in the arse I tell you. 

I've made no traction on my Christmas to do list, but there is still time. 
19 days to be exact.
I may do some online stuff this morning while the cinnamon rolls rise. 
I got the kids' wish list this week. It tickled me to see that both the older kids had actual books on them.  

Speaking of books you know I previously worked at our local library. Friday night I attended a retirement/holiday party for my friend Lisa, the library director. 
She has been at the library promoting the love of books and the knowledge they bring, in our community for 15 years. 
We had a great time reminiscing about our past library adventures and even played a few fun games. 

My boy-o was a bit under the weather yesterday. He snuggled on the couch with the kitties and watched movies. Tis the season for germs to be spread. 
Sounds like he'll be attending the first wrestling dual next Saturday so he'd better get to feeling better ASAP!

We gave the ginormous piano we had in the dining room away last week too. 
A friends niece's son is thrilled to have it. 
The dining room looks impossibly huge and light now. 
I need to hang up some pictures, but may wait until after Christmas because I think we'll be doing some kind of kid picture for the Hubby and that will be the walls main focus. 

later :)

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

December already?

Dang November fairly flew by!
I had a grand five day mini-vacation, spending much of my time outside for the first part of it.
No way was I going to fritter away the last of the 50* weather parked in the house if I didn't have to. 
I managed to whack down all the weeds in the cow pen and behind the barn. 
I may start on the front pasture this weekend since the little bit of snow we received on Thanksgiving and yesterday will be melted by then.
I love this mild weather. 

Our Thanksgiving was wonderful!
Colton and his girlfriend ended up coming home since the storm petered out early in the day. It was lovely having him here even for just a short time. 
I already can't wait for him to come home again. 

23 more shopping days till Christmas folks!
Yes, I'm way behind as usual. 
No tree up.
One gift purchased - hey it's a start.
No cards done.
Plans tho, I have tons of plans.
With any luck all my plans will fall into place. 

A few pictures from last week. 

Jennifer and Dozer. 

I'm still having computer issues. 
I think I just need to break down and buy a new one. 
Thing is even though I am on the dang thing every day for work I am not sure what I need/want for my home use. There are a lot of deals out there now so if I'm going to do it I should do it soon.

If you are up for a chuckle you can go HERE and see Caden and the rest of the 7th grade class doing a rap about grammar. 
He is in the last group; shows up at about 5 min 15 seconds.
They will show it at the kids' graduation in 2021. 
We'll be seeing Chyann's grammar flap in May.
Saw Colton's too. It made me cry. 


Have a good one :)