Saturday, December 23, 2006
This evening I took this picture of our front door lit with the Christmas lights. We have a little celebrating to do in the days to come! Memories of Christmases past are in my mind, resulting in nostalgic thoughts for the little children I used to have and the family and friends who are no longer with us. Of course what's important are the little children of the present and the future. I can't wait to see Gabriel and Scarlett and watch them open their presents!
My friend Dee's daughter Jasmine was married Thanksgiving weekend; there was a bridal shower a couple of weeks ago. Here is Jasmine opening the T shirt quilt that I made last summer. The T shirts were a wonderful collection of memories for Jasmine, as Dee had saved them from all the years that Jasmine was growing up. I enjoyed making the quilt and then to see her now as a young wife taking it to her first apartment with her husband. Jasmine's husband is in the army, stationed right now in Austin, Texas. She joined him there this
On the crafty side, here is my latest Baby Surprise sweater, headed for a little boy living far away. I love this pattern; I've made several of them now. They take about a week of easy knitting, and are always fun because I love to see how the colors and stripes work out. There's very little finishing because the only sewing is a short seam across the shoulders.
Friday, December 22, 2006
Merry Christmas and blessings for the coming year. We hope this greeting finds you all well. We are doing really great!
On March 4 our older son, Tom, married Kelly in
In April we traveled to
While there, Tony was able to reconnect with high school classmates, and also to see his family. It was a wonderful trip.
Our grandchildren are the joy of our lives. Our older grandchild,
Tony continues to stay busy with hi
Joan continues with English tutoring plus lots of hobbies.
Life is good. We wish you peace and send our love for this holiday season.
Tony and Joan
Tuesday, December 12, 2006
However, I believe I have found just about perfect gifts this year for my two grandchildren, and you can see the pictures here. Gabriel at 2 1/2 loves cars, trucks, tractors, and trains. His favorite movie is "Cars". My gift to him is this Lightning McQueen car which talks and apparently can be programmed to do almost anything. I can't wait to see his face when he opens it.
Scarlett's gift is a "Language Littles" doll named Young-Hee. This doll speaks both English and Korean in a very clear and real voice. The doll already speaks many sentences in both languages and more can be downloaded from the internet. Since Scarlett is learning both languages from her parents, and Young Hee is a lovely soft doll, I think it is the perfect gift for her. Now Scarlett is 19 months old, but when she is five, maybe she will look exactly like this doll.
If only I could come up with perfect gifts for everyone! Really, the only perfect gift would be peace on earth, and this I wish for everyone!
Thursday, December 07, 2006
Please meet the Park twins, Avery and Connor, who live near Atlanta. Kelly has a wonderful friend named Stephanie who was a bridesmaid at Kelly and Tom's wedding last March. At that time Stephanie was pregnant with twins and here they are! I find twins so amazing! I can only imagine the daily care that is involved with parenting two babies at once. I decided to knit matching sweaters for Stephanie's twins, blue (of course!) for Connor and pink for Avery. In today's email I was so pleased to receive these pictures of Stephanie's babies modeling the 5 hour baby sweater.
Saturday, December 02, 2006
2 3/4 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 sticks (1 cup) butter or margarine (I use margarine)
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
Put the butter or margarine in a large microwave bowl, heat for one minute until margarine melts. Add sugar, vanilla, and egg and mix together. Then add the flour, baking soda, and salt. Mix very well. Put in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.
Form into 1 inch balls, press on a greased cookie sheet, and flatten. Add walnut if desired. Bake in a 400 degree oven about 8 or 9 minutes until a little browned on the outside.
These are very nice with a cup of coffee or tea!
Sunday, November 26, 2006
Tony was in charge of preparing the turkey. Cooking is his hobby and his favorite thing is to see people enjoying his cooking. Our menu included turkey, stuffing (2 kinds), gravy and mashed potatoes, broccoli casserole, and several other delicious foods. Dessert was Marta's special apple dessert which we all loved.
The weather this year was amazing. We often
This is my favorite picture of me with Scarlett and Gabriel. I like to get down on the floor and play with them. They are very sweet and loving and it is a privilege to be their grandmother!
Monday, November 20, 2006
James and his family were our neighbors across the street for five years. When they first moved to our street, the twins, Miki and Kazu, were only one year old. Their family returned to Japan two years ago. We have missed them; the children are so beautiful and we could watch them as they were growing up. When they returned to Japan, the children were in first grade and had excellent English. Now they've been gone for two years. Last week James arrived here on a business trip so he came to our house for dinner last night. It was so nice to see him!
I have been enjoying knitting lace recently. Here is my Swallowtail Shawl. The pattern is from Interweave Knits, fall issue. It was challenging to knit and very satisfying. I really have to pay attention to it when knitting (can't really watch TV at the same time!)
Here is a Baby Surprise sweater which I just finished. We will try it on Scarlett to see if it fits. I enjoy working with color and the stripes are fun to make.
Wednesday, November 15, 2006
Speaking of beautiful, how about my lovely daughter-in-law Kelly, also of New York City, or at least nearby in Hoboken, New Jersey? We are so delighted that Kelly is expecting our third grandchild in May. We won't know if the baby is a boy or girl because Kelly and Tom would like a surprise. Here is Kelly at 14 weeks. Tom waited a long time to find the right girl, and Kelly is so right for him!
My last wonderful picture is the latest of Gabriel. He is now two and a half years old and this is his school picture. He is really just as cute as this with a happy smile. Sorry everybody, I'm a really proud grandmother, and I adore my grandchildren!
Monday, November 13, 2006
Thursday, November 09, 2006
Friday, November 03, 2006
Thursday, November 02, 2006
Wednesday, November 01, 2006
Gabriel was trick or treating with his mom at his house, and this morning the pictures arrived, so I include them here. It looks like Coco also got into the spirit of the holiday. Aren't they cute?
Monday, October 30, 2006
Marta has a lovely and charming friend named Michelle. Marta and Michelle used to work in the same company until Michelle’s husband got a new job requiring that they move to another state. Now Michelle is pregnant with her first baby coming soon. When Marta asked me to make a quilt for Michelle’s baby, I wa
Tuesday, October 24, 2006
Yesterday was cold and cloudy with light snow falling much of the day. I was hungry for something sweet and warm, so I got out my cookbooks, looking for something to bake. In 1965 when I was newly married, I bought a copy of the Betty Crocker Cookbook, and have used it regularly ever since. Now the covers are off and the pages are dog eared. I haven’t taken it out for awhile, but last night I found the recipe for a favorite cookie, and here it is:
1 cup margarine
1 ½ cups sugar
2 ¾ cups flour
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon soda
¼ teaspoon salt.
Mix above ingredients together well. Roll into small balls.
Thursday, October 19, 2006
An Autumn Weekend at the Lake
Last weekend we went to Tom and Kelly's lake house near Eldred, New York, in the Pocono Mountains. The weather was cold but sunny and the leaves were in full color.
In the first picture you can see Tom preparing the dock for winter. He had a little surprise when he lifted the boat on the right side of the picture.
Here is an early morning picture I took on the lake side of the house.
Saturday we stopped at a state park which would have been a very busy place during the summer months but now was empty except for us. Here are Tom and Kelly on the beach; Tom had his camera and was getting ready to take pictures.
Sunday we took a drive to the site of the Erie Canal and along the Delaware River; years ago this waterway was central to the logging industry. Trees were cut down and then the logs were transported to the lumber mills downriver by floating along on the water.
Saturday, October 14, 2006
Please meet Chisola Sophie, a very small and new American who is about to take her first airplane flight and move to Japan on Tuesday. Her parents, Ted and Mina, have been my students and friends, and are finished with their working assignment here. We will miss them! It was my great pleasure to meet Chisola. There is nothing better than spending time with a baby. Doesn't she have the most remarkable hair? Isn't she beautiful?
Wednesday, October 04, 2006
Monday, October 02, 2006
Steve, Marta, and
Saturday morning the adult visitors left for a day of shopping; Tony and I enjoyed our time with
perfect; a little rainy and cold; but we bundled up and went to the park. Our purpose was to show
Sunday’s weather was much better with sunshine and warmer temperatures. We enjoyed some shopping together.
Friday, September 22, 2006
Every year I look forward to the first apples of autumn, usually Paula Reds and Macintosh.
Tony loves fresh apple pie, so when the new apples appear in September, I like to make a pie. For my health conscious readers, I apologize, fully knowing that apple pie is an unhealthy food! Nevertheless, it is a treat, and sometimes we need to treat ourselves.
My favorite pie crust recipe came from my friend Sue who is no longer with us and sadly missed in our group of friends. This is a great recipe because it’
Please see in the top picture all the pies I’ve made today.
Here’s the pie crust recipe:
Sue’s Pie Crust
4 cups flour
1 Tbsp. Sugar
2 tsp. Salt
1 ¾ c. vegetable shortening such as Crisco
2 Tbsp. White vinegar
½ cup water
Combine flour, sugar, and salt. Cut in shortening. Combine water, vinegar, and egg. Beat with fork. Pour into flour mixture. (Will be sticky) Cover and chill at least 2 hours. Rolls out easily. Makes two 2 crust pies or 5 single crust pies. Can freeze 2 months or refrigerate 2 weeks. If frozen, thaw in refrigerator 2 hours.
Saturday, September 16, 2006
The T shirt quilt:
Forty two t shirts were used. I cut 11 inch squares from the front of each, then backed them with iron on interfacing in order to give the t shirt material more substance. Since the interfacing comes 22 inches wide, it was easy to decide on using 11 inch squares. I put all the squares down on my clean basement tile, arranging them in an agreeable color combination. Then I sewed them together to make the 6 by 7 square grid. Light blue flannel was used for the backing and bias binding with polyester batting in the center. Quilting was done by machine, mainly stitch in the ditch on the seam lines joining the t shirt squares.
The end result is a soft and comforting quilt filled with memories of Jazmine's activities during her school days.
Also on the t shirt front, I happened upon this video and became obsessed with t shirt folding. I am not a naturally neat and tidy person, but now I can fold my t shirts in a flash and it's actually fun! Try it!
Thursday, September 14, 2006
Last weekend was our annual family get-together. Every September we plan to have all our family, most living in