Monday, December 17, 2012

Well here we are…

Just a week away from Christmas – I don’t know where the time has gone. As many of you feel the same way I’m sure….seems we were just getting out our Fall things and then WALLA…Christmas.
If only it would snow it might have a more festive feeling – although I’m not sure snow would do it as like everyone in the country my mood is not a happy one.  The Conn. tragedy has left a mark on many or possibly all of us I’m sure…when children are involved it is such a different feeling and matter all together – they’re all tragic but this was horrific.  As with all of you I’m sending out prayers to the families and the community.

Things have been going quite smoothly around here lately and I’m not sure why – possibly because I gave up trying to fit EVERYTHING’s not going to make one bit of difference if ‘this or that’ doesn’t get done…who’s going to know…and I’m better off for it.
Tonight we are going to Emily’s band concert and tomorrow night is Joe’s concert.
Wednesday is shopping day in Janesville and Saturday night friends are coming over and we’re going out for our yearly Christmas dinner.  I was going to make the dinner but AGAIN…I said…WHY…let’s just go out like we always do with them and it will be less stress.  Good thinking huh???   Am I getting wiser or what????

We visited Darren and MaryAnn this morning because I missed the little munchkins and I wanted to give MaryAnn the Penny Rug I made for her along with some candy/cookies we made.
I included a cute little plate with a hand drawn Santa scene on it and the words ‘Cookies For Santa’ and added 3 of my Wool Cookies.

 Snowman and trees mat 1

Snowman and trees mat
Miranda is going through the ‘scared’ stage when she sees people…took quite a bit before we could get her to hold still long enough to get a half way decent picture.

Daddy and Miranda
Miranda and Darren

Aidan didn’t want to get out of his Santa jammies…nor leave his Wii game he was playing

Us and babies

Our daughter in-law Jamie chose one of my Trees For Sale Penny Rugs – she gets hers tonight.  And Heather chose a Flag hanging for hers – which I still have to make.
Trees Runner

This past week Doug and I had a day of baking and candy making.
Although one didn’t turn out – we wanted to make soft creamy caramels but the one’s we made were like rocks…looked nice, tasted great but you wouldn’t have teeth left if you ate them.  We tossed the whole batch away.  May try a different recipe later this week.
caramels 1 

 finished caramels

finished caramels 1

Then it was on to Butter Toffee – oh my goodness this is awesome stuff.  Next time though I will put it in a larger pan and use milk chocolate instead of dark chocolate (although dark is my favorite).  Once it cools you break it into pieces.
Toffee Candy

Toffee finished

And last we made Pecan Balls.  A must have each Christmas.  Fudge will be this week…if I make it too soon it gets eaten too quickly (by me….)
Pecan Cookies

Pecan Cookies in tin

I am so in awe at the wonderful people in this world…I know this past week we have heard so much bad but today I received a surprise letter/card in the mail from someone I do not know.  This is because of the wonderful world of blogs.
Over the past 4 years since I’ve had my blog I am amazed at the people who make contact and share – why can’t the whole world be this nice…we all seem to have common ground and are drawn by these common threads.  Love of each other, our homes, our families and just loving life.
I did not know Kathy existed as she does not comment.  She wrote (yes, WROTE, NOT TYPED) 4 pages to let me know who she was and to get a better feel of who she was.  She sent photos of her home as well, I feel I know her now. Thank you Kathy for your sweet kind words and for letting me get a glimpse of your life too.  I hope now you will start commenting – I’d so love to hear from you.
So you see…there are wonderful people in our world and they outnumber all the bad by far.

And speaking of wonderful friends…here’s a couple we met just once for a weekend 3 years ago.
Ben and Linda Tittles live in Florida and we met them through a couple other friends whom we met for the Simple Goods show.  From then on Ben and Linda have been such wonderful close friends…they send cards, e-mail greetings, updates on them/their family and send the most awesome thoughtful gifts.  Linda seems to know just what to give.  Last year it was a gorgeous Mercury ornament…pewter candlesticks, pewter goblets and now this year an BEAUTIFUL ‘HANDCRAFTED’ MERCURY BOWL and 3 adorable ornaments.
I do not know what we did to deserve the wonderful friendship from them but we love you Ben and Linda. THANK YOU.
Mercury bowl 2

Mercury bowl

Last week while looking through A PRIMITIVE PLACE MAGAZINE I came across a home who had a wonderful hooked rug on her bedroom wall – I NEEDED IT!  I asked a couple rug hooking gals on the blogs if they knew and one of them did.  Cathy from Orange Sink knew just the pattern designer and led me to her.
I ordered it on Friday and today it arrived…is it awesome or what???  Now I will have something to work on after my surgery while I recuperate.

It came from WOOLEN MEMORIES – she has so many wonderful patterns and her prices are very reasonable.
Sheep rug pattern bag

Sheep rug pattern 
Here’s the one I saw…and I’m hoping to use the same color pallet.
I have some wonderful Ivory wool left from my last sheep rug that will look just great…nice and fluff.
hooked rug on wall

hooked rug on wall closeup

Oh my…more old vintage and mercury ornaments…seems I didn’t find all they had last time I was at the Garden shop.  They had several trees with old ornaments on them and I went in again on Saturday and yeahhhh – more ornaments.

New ornaments 2

THEN….as I was checking the cupboards in the basement I found a bag with more ornaments in them…I had purchased them back in September at an antique shop and put them away and forgot about them….so 6 more went on the tree.
I am now very happy with all the ones I’ve found this year.

New ornaments 1 

Last minute touches….I didn’t like the tree in the bathroom so I added some snowmen heads and a couple of banners.Full bathroom

Bathroom tree 1


Looking out into the screen room from the family room
Looking out

Garland fireplace

Den into family room…see why I love sitting on the loveseat to stitch…I can see into the family room and not feel out of the loop.
den family room full view

Den full view

lamp base

Have a wonderful rest of your week and weekend…I’ll be visiting you soon.



  1. Hi Karen,

    What a lovely long post - now I feel as if I know you so much better. Love all your ornies and the tree in the bathroom looks super now.
    hugs, Kaye

  2. Hello Karen, yes, much heartbreak.......thoughts and prayers to all the families in Newtown........yum yum, so much goodies you made, love your cozy home, wonderful decorating, sweet Grandki.........Blessings Francine.

  3. Hello dear,
    I always love reading you post..such a sweet post .
    I love Everything from my heart ..yummy candy and lovely ornies..sweet ...cute babies..I love them so much.
    Love for you sweet friend x

  4. I always enjoy your posts and this one is no exception ~great memories w/the wee ones, love your new wooly pattern, and all the lovely Christmas decor in your beautiful home.

    Hugs and Merry Christmas!

  5. Wonderful newsy post! I have felt so sad since Friday and wanting to stay at home. Your great pics are warm and cozy. A great place to call home.
    Happy Holidays!

  6. Hi Karen, I love your new timely! I used to has been a long time.

    I did not know you decided to go ahead and have the surgery. Everything will be okay and for the best. I will continue to have you in my prayers.

    The beautiful gifts for your daughter -in-laws are superb! What a wonderful MIL you are. I try to do things for my SIL and my DIL,,,,they appreciate it very much.

    Have a blessed rest of the week, my friend,

  7. Oh, this was such a lovely post! I felt like I was hanging out with you! I love the pecan balls!!!! Mmmmmmm. And your home looks so inviting and beautiful! Thank you for taking the time to share!

    Blessings and hugs, friend!

  8. Karen, Do I ever love both of your penny rugs, beautiful as always!
    Enjoy the pictures of your adorable grandchildren.
    Does your candy look yummy!
    So nice of Kathy to send you a letter.
    Love all the pictures of your lovely home and Christmas decor. Wishing you a Merry Christmas! hugs, Lecia

  9. Hi Karen...I've been away from blogging for a while but just popped in to see what my blogging friends are up to! You home and family look so warm and wonderful! And the cookies and candy! YUM!
    Have a happy Holiday!

  10. Hi Karen,
    Enjoyed reading all the goings on with you and yours...loved the pics. Your penny mats are so the sled with the little trees!
    I'm so happy to hear you are enjoying some easy going days...we all need more of them.
    Take good care,

  11. WOW! You have been busy.
    Wee ones are adorable and your goodies.....YUMMO!
    Enjoyed reading.
    Merry Christmas.

  12. Your home looks so beautiful ~ and you are so deserving of your Christmas surprises!!! Merry Christmas to you!!

  13. I love your rugs. Miranda is getting so big. Her daddy looks like his Mama. Aiden is my kind of kid, pj's all They are so cute, Sorry about the caramels, were they Nancy's recipe? Hers never get hard. I bet you and Doug had fun doing all that. I made cookies today and fudge Saturday.How sweet a reader wrote you such a nice note.

  14. Your home, my friend, is a positively and delightfully magical place!! There are few places I could say I would "swap" homes over....but yours is on that short list. Gorgeous - and all the holiday dressings just add to the wonderful magic. Baking? Shopping??? Arghhh...I have a LONG week ahead of me.....Plus throw in a climb up Mt. Laundry, cleaning, and moving my mom into an assisted living facility and I, for one, will be glad when this year is over. (I think....) :o??? Love your pennies - especially the second one with the trees. I'm too old to be your daughter-in-law (drat the bad luck) 'bout an honorary sister or something??? You give the bestest gifts!!! Smiles & Hugs ~ Robin

  15. I always love your updates! Love your pictures, and like you, I am praying for the tragedy! So sad.

  16. Karen, this is a delightful post. Miranda & Aidan are adorable. All of the candies look yummy. I love the penny rugs and your new hooked rug - I'm sure it will be beautiful. Wow, more mercury ornaments - you can never have too many. Love seeing more pictures of your beautiful home.

  17. Karen,
    These are the times we need to hug thos little ones even more! sigh... Haven't emailed you back, things been crazy, ed is on the mend and yikes Christmas next week, I haven't even started backing yet... your toffee looks oh so yummy as does everything else! sending you many hugs this christmas season! OLM

  18. Hello Karen: More sadness for our country and it seems even worse with children involved. I wish the families strength at this sorrowful time.
    Love your delightful post; you are the best and great pictures. I wish I could post so many pictures like you do but blogger doesn't take too kindly to that. Good to visit you again!

  19. Karen, what a nice visit with you! I so love your penny rugs, so talented! The hanging you are going to hook is going to be beautiful also.
    Thanks for sharing everything, it was such a nice visit.
    Be blessed,

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  21. Karen LOVED reading your post this morning and will finish it tonight when I get home.

  22. Karen,
    Loved seeing all the pics. I hope your sons are both doing well. Love your wool pieces. Your home is lovely. How fun you found more old ornaments to use. That rug will be a fun one to hook. I have one with bunnies on it from her I need to get hooked. Probably will be my next one to do. We are remembering those families that have suffered so greatly. Our hearts and prayers are with them each one. Lori

  23. Karen ~~
    Loved reading your post.
    Beautiful Photos, Beautiful Words.
    Just what I needed Today.
    I'm so Grateful that when times
    are hard, lonely, or sad, I know I can connect with my Blogger Friends and find Comfort, Inspriation, and a Warm Hug.
    Blessings & Hugs ~ Connie xox

  24. wow, what a busy week......your home looks so pretty and the candy and cookies....well I would pack a few pounds on that! I am about done over here, just last minute food things and a few items to wrap....Merry Christmas to you and your family.

  25. Hello Karen! What a wonderful post!
    I so enjoy reading your Blog and seeing all your Beautiful pictures!
    Love all your displays! Those Grand Children of yours are so adorable and getting so Big! I Love your new Pattern. Can't wait to see it all finished! Take Care!
    Merry Christmas to You and Your Family!

  26. More beautiful ornaments!!! You have the best luck finding them. The bathroom tree is stunning. It's so sparkly. Ok, now I KNOW I may be pushing my luck here but I'll ask anyway....if you have the time....could we also get the butter toffee and creamy caramels recipes too?? (Don't hate me for asking) :)
    Happy baking!

  27. karen...that rug is going to be fun to do....i too am so sadden over the families in is just awful and christmas seems not the same to me ever since friday happened....prayers are being sent...i love your cozy and warmfelt home...there is a lot of love there...i feel it everytime i visit your blog...thanks for sharing...and just in case i don't make it back before christmas...have yourself a very merry christmas...

  28. Hi Karen

    I loved your post and all the pictures! I agree, I lost some of my Christmas mojo too this week. Connecticut, but also a family tragedy in the news over here. All involving children.


  29. Hi is so good to hear that things have been running smoothly & you are felling pretty good these days! it does help to stop and say I need to scale back and make my life easier so I can enjoy it..sounds like you to have found pleasure in a simple change!
    the house looks beautiful full of Christmas sprit!Hope you get some snow...we did..
    Its so cool when you make friends that seem to just fall into your life and stay..
    I have some old mercury ornaments but I don't have the big tree anymore and the kitty's would just yank them off my little one so they are packed away! Loved seeing all yours tho it brought back some nice memories of my trees covered with them!

    Have a wonderful Christmas filled with lots of love and warm fuzzy memories!


  30. Yes, I ushered at church tonight and our pastor mentioned the shootings; just doesn't seem right to celebrate the joy of Christmas and not acknowledge that many are suffering. I usually make pecan balls too. My mom made those every year. Love, love, love the old ornaments. They have such a sweet patina. Have a wonderful weekend. ~Roberta

  31. Hi Karen---I love your Snowman penny mat, it's so colorful and cute! I like the tree for sale one too. Your candy and pecan balls look wonderful! I love your vintage and mercury ornaments, I had my moms but when we had our fire years ago, I lost them.
    I hear you on trying to fit everything in or do everything you did in previous years.
    Have a Merry Christmas!


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