Paws || Walk On – 12.14 – 12.27

Every now and then when I’m walking dogs, I will just stop, ask them to sit for about 30 seconds and then I will say “walk on”. That is there cue to start walking again. I do this for a couple of reasons: 1. They’re super focused when they’re on the walk and I like to know I can get their attention any time I need it. 2. It’s good to continue to incorporate training into their daily routines. Just as we need to continue to refine our skills, so must dogs.

This always reminds me how important it is for me to pause and reflect on the past week and then think about the next one as I “walk on”.

Paws | Week of 12.14-12.20

• had a wonderful get together with some long time friends.  Shared some yummy appetizers and Christmas gifts.
• called my Grandpa in England.
• finished The God Ask: A Fresh, Biblical Approach to Personal Support Raising with Mike.  We’re spending the next couple of weeks working on the details of everything we read.
01a466b11351d5ed1c31cad4738c2c91a09d4dc0a0• walked the dogs everyday.  I love the decorations that my neighbors put on their trees.
• watched Fred Clause, It’s a Wonderful Life, A Christmas Story, The Polar Express, Babette’s Feast, The Santa Clause, A Christmas Carol, Santa Paws, Santa Paws 2, The 12 Dogs of Christmas.
filled the Advent Calendar for my dogs.  And the promptly removed the treats because Mindy wouldn’t let anyone get near it.  It created great stress in our house.  We discovered that Mindy’s super power is “Protector of all Food”.  Oh well at least I tried.
• finished my Christmas shopping.
• had friends over for Christmas lunch and gifts.  So much fun.
01c56e696d5fce48f55ac78339a5d81aea11a577c5• planted an amaryllis.
• finished a knitted hat for a Christmas gift.
enjoying our Christmas decorations.
• finished Christmas cards.
• worked on a knitting project.  Details to come later.
• picked up reserved books from the library.  I’m ready for book #2.


Walk On | Week of 12.21-12.27

• call my Grandpa in England.
• make more dog beds and collars to sell on Etsy.
December-Photo-A-Day-2014-The-Idea-Room• taking part in a December Photo-a-day challenge.  Still catching up.
• make birthday cards for December/January birthdays.
101907 023• celebrate Ellie’s 9th birthday.
• prep January Card Series || Cards for 2015.
• send out Christmas cards.
• continue watching Christmas movies.
• spend Christmas eve with Mike’s family.
• go to Christmas eve service at our church.
• teach a friend’s daughter how to sew with her brand new sewing machine.
• go to the movies on Christmas day with Mike.  It’s just the two of us and we want to see The Hobbit and The Imitation Game.

My favorite quote from the week:  “If you want to be happy, set a goal that commands your thoughts, liberates your energy, and inspires your hopes.”  Andrew Carnegie.

Have a wonderful week,
Grace

 

 

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I’m really enjoying the Christmas decorations as well and I’m sorry my “Protector of all Food” super power has caused problems.

Posted in Accountability, Books, Cards, Christmas, Christmas movies, Decorating, Dogs, Gardening, Goals, Homemade, Knitting, Movies, Paper Crafting, Quest46, sewing, TV & Movies, Yarn | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Saturday Snippets | December 20, 2014

Welcome to Saturday Snippets.  This is where I share links and odd bits of info from the past week.

1. I think my favorite is the bulldog with the flask.

2.  This article convicted me.

3.  My 2014 word was ‘Complete’.  And I’m already thinking about my word for 2015.  I even signed up for Ali Edwards’ ‘One Little Word‘ class, thanks to my brother.  I’ve taken her One Little Word class a couple of times and it’s always excellent.  Only $26 until December 31.

Skew SocksRed Forest Superwash Yarn4.  I’m going to be making these Skew Socks (Quest46: #36) using this yarn from AndreSueKnits.  It’s the Red Forest colorway and it’s the yummiest yarn I’ve seen in a long time.

5.  “Each morning, we get a brief window of time during which we’re most mentally capable of getting stuff done. And yet most of us waste that time.”    I’m going to give this a try, but I’m not sure how the dogs are going to feel about me tapping into their walk time.  I’ll let you know how it goes.

Well that’s all the snippets I have for today.  Have a wonderful Saturday,

Grace

 

 

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I think you your word for 2015 should be walk.

Posted in Accountability, Christmas, Dogs, Education, Goals, Homemade, Knitting, Paper Crafting, Quest46, Saturday Snippets, Scrapbooking, Thankfulness, Tutorial, Yarn | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

The Christmas decorating is done.

I finally finished decorating for Christmas.  Here are some snapshots of our merriment.

01ab55fbe03de42cdeb6b42876ecbbdc73f727ceaeOur Christmas decorating centers around our wall tree.  It’s made of seven branches that I found in our backyard, painted white and cut in decreasing lengths.  Each branch rests on nails Mike attached to the wall.  I start by wrapping the branches with lights and tinsel (sparkly yarn).  I then start hanging most of our ornaments.  I had a few extra this year with with 30 Days of Christmas Ornaments blog series, but that’s okay because I have three extra trees that need decorating.  I hang the ornaments with fishing line because it’s invisible and strong.  After Christmas, I’ll keep the tree up, but start adding birds (Quest46 #33).

 

018339ab5530710ea1bd6bd2e6dfac06026a65c68eNext we have our fireplace that features the ‘dog’ 012f11964a6a8cfd8984bc947925041eca22535421Christmas tree.  This is a 3′ lighted tree with only ‘dog related’ ornaments.  Here’s a close up.  Over the years I received lots of doggy ornaments, but was able to add a few more this year.  I had planned to make the base into a dog house, but time got away from me so I’m saving that idea for next year.

Then we have the fireplace mantel.  This is where I put my Precious Moments Nativity.  My mom bought this for me the first year we were married.  The angel holding the ‘Jesus’ banner was added a few years later.

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And now comes the Santa Collection.  I’ve been collecting these guys (and a Mrs. Claus) for 26 years.  I wrote a post about my ten favorite a couple of years ago.  Each tree on this display also has some Santa ornaments and others that I couldn’t fit on the wall tree.

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Here are some close ups.

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And finally, our entry.

0155b78c0ad397dbb3b1106b060f12b5991788df8eI hope you are having a festive Christmas season and enjoying this time with family and friends.

Grace

 

 

 

 

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I’m really enjoying Christmas.  Although I did happen to ruin mom’s Dog Advent Calendar idea.  She had to take all the biscuits out of the buckets because she didn’t realize my super power is ‘Protector of all Food.’  Apparently it wasn’t cool to park myself next to the Advent Calendar and growl at the other dogs as they walked by.  Hhmmm…

Posted in Christmas, Decorating, Dogs, Goals | Tagged , , , | 8 Comments

The Art of Giving and Receiving Gifts {Part 2}

My Santa Collection lovingly given to me by different people over the years.

Part of my Santa Collection lovingly given to me by different people over the years.

Yesterday I talked about giving gifts.  Today I want to switch over to the receiving of gifts.

I can think of several people in my life who I would describe as “really good receiver’s of gifts”.  They’re always appreciative, express their thanks with enthusiasm and make the giver feel really good.  And they’re completely genuine.  I’m sure there’s been a time in your life where you received a gift that really didn’t meet your expectations.  I think this happens to kids a lot, but I know it can happen to adults.  It’s in those times when it’s important to think more about the feelings of the person who gave you the gift rather than the gift itself.  I have friends who have made it a point to teach their kids how to receive gifts properly.  You wouldn’t think that would be something that needs to be taught, but it does.

As a kid, I was expected to send thank you notes to everyone I received gifts from.  And those thank you notes were to be written and mailed before I was allowed to use the gifts.  Being appreciative of other people’s kindness was a quality my mom wanted to instill in us early on.  And it worked.  We were taught thankfulness, but the bigger lesson was seeing the gift from the giver’s point of view.

There’s an art to the receiving of gifts.  To be done well, it requires a big heart and being appreciative, not only for the gift, but for the giver.  Sometimes it demands graciousness and it’s always best expressed through an attitude of love.  In this area as well, I haven’t always been the best artist.  (There’s a particular incident when I was 12 that I’m ashamed of to this day).  In fact, just talking with Mike about this topic has brought up several memories for him as well.  Even today, 34 years later, there are episodes in our lives than make us wince.

As an adult, I haven’t always been good about sending out thank you notes and as I’ve pondered this topic for the past few days, I’m making a decision from now on to send out thank you notes for gifts or kindnesses I receive.

What’s been your experience with giving/receiving gifts?

Grace

 

 

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This is how we receive gifts.  We don’t have to send out thank you notes, but mom always makes us sit.

 

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The Art of Giving and Receiving Gifts {Part 1}

Gift-2I’ve been thinking a lot about gifts lately.  Mostly because it’s Christmas and I’m buying/making gifts, but also because I made one of my Quest46 goals all about gift giving.  #11 is “Send two ‘thinking of you gifts’ every month.”  It’s been so much fun thinking about different people and how I can surprise them.

I know you’ve all experienced watching a loved one open a gift from you and seeing the expression on their face that says, “It’s exactly what I wanted.  How did you know?” Giving meaningful gifts is probably one of the best feelings in the world.  Along with the gift, the person receives the amazing feeling that they were genuinely thought of by another person.

As an example, this past weekend I spent an afternoon with a group of long time friends.  While munching on yummy appetizers and catching up on life, we also exchanged Christmas gifts.  Without exception each gift was perfectly suited to each person and there was as much joy in the giving as there was in the receiving.  There was an attentiveness to the uniqueness of each person that made the time we spent amazing.

320_birthday_Wallpapers_eight_gift_boxesAs I’ve been thinking through this idea of gift giving, I’ve decided there’s an art to the giving of gifts.  To be done well, it requires time and attentiveness.  Sometimes it demands sacrifice and it’s always best expressed through an attitude of love.  I must admit that I LOVE giving gifts, but I haven’t always been the best artist.  I want to be better at this – at noticing and genuinely caring for the loved ones in my life.

Tomorrow, I’m talking about how to best receive gifts especially when a gift doesn’t measure up to our expectations.  Stay tuned….

Grace

 

 

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Can I just say that I LOVE that you LOVE to give gifts – especially tasty treat type gifts?

 

Posted in Accountability, Christmas, Goals, Quest46, Thankfulness | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

Paws || Walk On – 12.7 – 12.20

Every now and then when I’m walking dogs, I will just stop, ask them to sit for about 30 seconds and then I will say “walk on”. That is there cue to start walking again. I do this for a couple of reasons: 1. They’re super focused when they’re on the walk and I like to know I can get their attention any time I need it. 2. It’s good to continue to incorporate training into their daily routines. Just as we need to continue to refine our skills, so must dogs.

This always reminds me how important it is for me to pause and reflect on the past week and then think about the next one as I “walk on”.

Paws | Week of 12.7-12.13

• joined a group at church to sing Christmas carols at two nursing homes.  So much fun!
• called my Grandpa in England.
• continued to read The God Ask: A Fresh, Biblical Approach to Personal Support Raising with Mike.  Even though this book is really for Mike and his work, I’m already thinking about ways I can help with this.  I’m really excited for him.
• watched Miracle on 34th Street, Heidi, Frosty the Snowman, Elf, I Remember Mama
made an Advent Calendar for my dogs.
• went to Mike’s work Christmas party.  Such a wonderful time and really good food.
• coffee and knitting with friends.  An excellent combination.  Worked on some kitchen scrubby sponges.
01169de4072528fedbb79938e9a4fd9a68fb5b060a• walked the dogs everyday except Thursday when it rained buckets.  Here’s a beautiful rose that was in bloom.
• had an early morning (7am!) dentist appointment to fix a filling.
• finished decorating for Christmas!  Blog post to follow.
• almost finished Christmas cards.
• cooked my first turkey (with tons of help from my mom).
• worked on a knitting project.  Details to come later.
• finished the dog’s Christmas tree.
• almost finished with all my Christmas shopping.  Two presents to go!
• lovely Christmas get-together with my side of the family.


Walk On | Week of 12.14-12.20

• get together with some long time friends for Christmas festivities.
• call my Grandpa in England.
• make more dog beds and collars to sell on Etsy.
December-Photo-A-Day-2014-The-Idea-Room• taking part in a December Photo-a-day challenge.  A lot behind, but will catch up.
• make birthday cards for December birthdays.
• prep January Card Series || Cards for 2015.
• send out Christmas cards.
• continue watching Christmas movies.
• finish Christmas shopping.

My favorite quote from the week:  “Set a goal so big that you can’t achieve it until you grow into the person who can.”  Unknown.

Have a wonderful week,
Grace

 

 

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We’re really excited that you know how to cook turkey now.

Posted in Accountability, Books, Cards, Christmas, Christmas movies, Crochet, Decorating, Dogs, Education, Goals, Homemade, Knitting, Meal planning, Movies, Paper Crafting, Quest46, TV & Movies | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Saturday Snippets | December 13, 2014

Welcome to Saturday Snippets.  This is where I share links and odd bits of info from the past week.

1. If you needed some reading material over the holidays, the New York Times released their list of ‘100 Notable Books of 2014′ divided by fiction, poetry and nonfiction.

2.  Ever wanted to know how to turn a carrot into a clarinet?  Well today’s you’re lucky day.

3.  All my real estate friends – you might want to consider this…

 

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4.  I’m thinking this would be a really cool project to make.

 

 

 

 

 

stack-of-papers5. Loved this blog post about organizing papers.  I  had an ‘aha’ moment.

 

 

 

 

Well that’s all the snippets I have for today.  Have a wonderful Saturday,

Grace

 

 

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I think you should use me as your subject for the #4 snippet.  You could use 9 different pictures of me showing my extensive range of emotion.  It’ll be awesome!

Posted in Books, Cleaning, DeCluttering, Dogs, Education, Goals, Homemade, Organization, Paper Crafting, Saturday Snippets, Tutorial | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment