Monthly Archives: November 2011

Deck the Halls



Deck the halls with boughs of holly,

Fa la la, la la la, la la la.

Tis the season to be jolly,

Fa la la, la la la, la la la.

Don we now our gay apparel,

Fa la la, la la la, la la la.

Troll the ancient Yule tide carol,

Fa la la la la, la la la la.

See the blazing Yule before us,

Fa la la la la, la la la la.

Strike the harp and join the chorus.

Fa la la la la, la la la la.

Follow me in merry measure,

Fa la la la la, la la la la.

While I tell of Yule tide treasure,

Fa la la la la, la la la la.

Fast away the old year passes,

Fa la la la la, la la la la.

Hail the new, ye lads and lasses,

Fa la la la la, la la la la.

Sing we joyous, all together,
Fa la la la la, la la la la.
Heedless of the wind and weather,
Fa la la la la, la la la la.

Although I have the fabric, I haven’t had the drapery hung because my house is new and we needed so much to be done outside to get our farm up and running.  I still wanted to decorate for Christmas and decided to just use the old.  Now I can’t seem to get “Deck the Halls” out of my head, fa la la.  I seem to have been decking the halls.   Let me know what you think.  Hopefully, you will get some great ideas  for your home.

Fa La La La La…

Fa La La La La …

Deck the halls with boughs of holly…


Frosty Is A Very Busy Guy…with a corn cob pipe and a button nose and……


Frosty The Snowman

Frosty the snowman was a jolly happy soul,
With a corncob pipe and a button nose
And two eyes made out of coal.
Frosty the snowman is a fairy tale, they say,
He was made of snow but the children
Know how he came to life one day.
There must have been some magic in that
Old silk hat they found.
For when they placed it on his head
He began to dance around.
O, Frosty the snowman
Was alive as he could be,
And the children say he could laugh
And play just the same as you and me.
Thumpetty thump thump,
Thumpety thump thump,
Look at Frosty go.
Thumpetty thump thump,
Thumpety thump thump,
Over the hills of snow.

Just look what Frosty did!

Frosty The Snowman

He had help!

Happy and Jolly, Frosty's Helpers

This guy helped, too!

This is Corn Cob, Frosty's Other Helper

I can’t get that song out of my head.  Over and Over….Frosty the snowman was a jolly happy soul, with a corn cob pipe and a button nose and two eyes made out of coal.  Frosty the snowman………………..Now you’re doing it.  Frosty the snowman……..

The Sweetest Gift


Catie Marie is the proper name of my only girl who follows me everywhere I go.   She also answers to many names that suit her multiple personalities.  Being Chinese, she is sometimes called Kim Soo because she can’t seem to understand English when she is chasing a squirrel or goes out into the pasture to find things that she is allergic to that make her swell up and turn bright red.  Miss Minerva is her haughty personality name when she demands and gets what she wants when she wants it.  She also goes by the Irish pronoun Herself shortened to Hers.   When she was a baby,  my youngest son was asked about her and he steadfastly replied, “Hers have legs but they haven’t come out yet.”  This was because she was so furry and little that she couldn’t gain traction on the tile floor and it appeared that her legs weren’t big enough in the back to carry her.

Oh So Nonchalant!

There are other names we have given her like “Edna” who is the grouchy old lady side of her, but I won’t go into that now because she is grinning at me and I love her so.

Sweet Girl!

A sweet gift, yes, but not the sweetest gift.  You see she was brought to me by my sister one day.  My sister,  who gets me to do things outside of my comfort zone,  knew that a puppy was just what our family needed.   I had hinted about it but just wouldn’t take the leap because when I do something it’s not with half a heart.   It’s full on commitment or nothing.  A sister knows these things, especially an older sister.  She stopped on the side of the road and bought a dirty little Shih Tzu out of a playpen and brought her to me.  My husband took one look and turned white in the face as he was imagining chewed leather sofas, stained carpets and scratched doors.  This didn’t deter a sister.  She promptly handed the puppy to me, turned around and got in the car and lamented, “I don’t want to get attached.  She is all yours.”  Our little puppy, who is an old girl now, chews only on her toys but never destroys them.  Heck, they all have names that she goes and gets them by.  The one above is her favorite and is called “Rocky the Raccoon”of which she will not go to bed without.  She stands at the door to have her paws wiped; comes to the tub to have her face wiped; politely touches you to let you know it’s time to potty; and, is affectionately referred to as “Baby Girl” by my husband.   Only a sister could have known this and carried it out to our greatest joy and that is why I call my sister “The Sweetest Gift”.  She just knows.

Cloths Of Heaven


He Wished for the Cloths of Heaven

“Had I the heavens’ embroidered cloths,
Enwrought with golden and silver light,
The blue and the dim and the dark cloths
Of night and light and the half-light,
I would spread the cloths under your feet:
But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
I have spread my dreams under your feet,
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams…” William Butler Yeats


Thanksgiving and Praise


Enter into His gates with thanksgiving, and into His courts with praise, be thankful to Him, and bless His name.  For the Lord is good; His mercy is everlasting, and His truth endures to all generations.  Psalm 109:4-5

I am thankful for the next generation.  My sons are a lot older now,  but I still treasure their childhood endeavors to celebrate Thanksgiving.  We bring these out every year to their dismay.   God is so good!

Bless the Lord, O my soul; and all that is within me, bless His holy name!  Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits:  Who forgives all your iniquities, Who heals all your diseases, Who redeems your life from destruction, Who crowns you with loving kindness and tender mercies, Who satisfies your mouth with good things, so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.  Psalm 103:1-5

Brett's Pumpkin and Story of Pumpkin the Skate Boarder

Bradley’s Thanksgiving Banner

Broccoli Rice Casserole


Broccoli Rice Casserole


2      Cups Uncooked Rice

2      Medium White Onions

1/2  Stick Butter

2       Packages Frozen Broccoli Florets

1/2   Package of Velveeta Cheese (16 ounces)

2       Cups Milk

2        Cans Cream of Chicken or Mushroom Soup


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Prepare rice as usual.  While rice is cooking, saute onions in butter.  Spray large casserole dish with cooking spray.  Place cooked rice and onions in dish and add frozen broccoli.  Stir lightly.  In a separate bowl mix cheese, milk and soup.  Add to rice mixture and stir to blend well.   Bake for one hour at 350 degrees.  This is a double recipe and can be halved.

(Nat Notes:  To prepare rice: spray pan so rice won’t stick.  Add two cups rice and four cups water with a sprinkle of olive oil.  Stir.  Bring to a boil. Stir.  Place lid on pan and turn stove to low.  Cook for fifteen minutes.  Do not lift the lid during cook time.  For the casserole:  use frozen broccoli florets.  They are more tender than with pieces and do not fall apart like fresh broccoli does.)

Rice, Onion and Broccoli with Cheese, Milk and Soup Mixture to Stir In

Natalie Notes or Nat Notes, Countdown to Thanksgiving II


There has to be a little commentary here before the recipes coming up on the next posts because when I am cooking I think of my niece and what she would be doing if she were cooking the recipe herself.    To that end, I would like to include helpful hints and details about the recipe and call them Natalie’s Notes or Nat Notes for short.  I am always thrilled when she asks for a recipe and I try to give her as much detail that I can possibly muster.

When I was a young bride I would call my mother and say, “how do you make gravy?’.   “Well, you just take a little flour and a little grease in a pan then add milk,” she would reply.   Well, that is correct, more or less, minus a few minor but important details.  I am certain that is how my grandmother taught my mother.  We all learned by trial and error in the good ole days.  Now, I always try to respond with something like:  get a skillet, preferably cast iron, put about two tablespoons of oil;  get it hot but not smoking; add four tablespoons of flour; stir immediately nd until a light brown.  Add water, stand back because the steam will hurt.  Then, add your salt and pepper.  Make sure your bring it to a bubble or boil before you turn to low.  It should be thick.  If not,  you can add small amounts of water.  I prefer brown gravy with water or use milk for white gravy.   Without all of those details, I think you should know that my first gravy, served to my new husband, could be sliced like pie.  We didn’t have internet back then so back I went to my mother who just laughed and laughed before she relinquished the details.

Nat Notes:

1.      Tomorrow is the big day.

2.      If you froze anything to be heated tomorrow, take it out and place in the refrigerator.  If you forget, take it out tonight and leave on the counter covered.

3.      The turkey must be soft to the touch in the package.  If not, take it out of the refrigerator to thaw all day and overnight.  I will be taking mine out late tonight to thaw overnight.  Look at the weight and determine the amount of time you need for cooking and carving in order to place hot turkey on the table.

4.       Have your cornbread already made, sitting out and covered.   The history of dressing is the good use of stale bread.  If your cornbread is too fresh you will have mushy dressing.

5.        Set your table tonight.  It takes the stress out.

6.        Designate a dessert table or area and have it  already set up with plates, forks and napkins.  If serving coffee, get that ready with cups in the same area.

7.       If you think you will run late on getting the meal on the table and don’t have an appetizer prepared put the relish plates out.  Do the relish plates tonight, cover and place in the refrigerator.

8.        Someone is always going to complain.  Ignore this person.  If you can’t seem to ignore him or her, rebuke them in your mind (only in your mind)  by saying to yourself, “I rebuke you in the name of Jesus” or “Get behind me satan” works really well.

9.         I am sure everything will be beautiful and delicious!

Pictured below is our very humble Thanksgiving table.  This year it is just our immediate family of four.  For some reason, I sat a table for six and I am thinking it was too difficult to go scale down from sixteen or twenty.  Perhaps, God has something else in mind for tomorrow.  All are welcome!

Blessed be the Lord Who daily loadeth us with benefits. Psalm 68:19