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Sunday, March 29, 2015

Wonderful Weekend

Goodness!  We've had a wonderful weekend.  I'm sorry if this post is a little long.  We stayed at the lake Friday night and on Saturday morning after our facetime with Miss Piper and her Mommy, we went into the town of Deer Park and had breakfast at a tiny, little small town diner.  8-10 miss-matched tables and chairs and tacky decor but the best breakfast I've had in a long time  For $5.99 I had 2 slices of bacon, eggs, hashbrowns and sour dough toast.  Yum!

Then we went to an antique/thrift store just down the street that we had never been to.  Oh, the treasures I found.  A little angel. A pile of books about pioneer families and a few other odds and ends.  All for well under $10.00.  The books alone were worth at least $50-70 so I feel I did very well.

Dennis looks cold in this picture but I'm not sure why.  It was warm but very very windy.  There were only two other couples in the park so it was very quiet.  We came home in the late afternoon and then went back out after church today for several hours to scrub the awning and do some clean up outside since the wind had died down.  I'm planning to go back out tomorrow morning with Chloe and I'll spend the night since Dennis has a meeting fairly late into the evening.  My first night of the season alone in the trailer.
Pretty.  The view from our back window.
Sunset on Friday.  I never tire of this view from the window.
The flowers are starting to bloom.
I  got a new piece of furniture yesterday.  I have been watching Craigslist, antique and thrift stores for several years trying to find an old "Kitchen Queen" as Teresa tells me that they're called for the amount I was able to pay.  I was dog-sitting for a neighbor last week and going in and out of the house through the garage with her door opener.  In the middle of the garage sat this cabinet all wrapped in clear plastic.  Well, well, well.  I thought about it and then decided I didn't have a thing to lose by asking my neighbor about it.  So I asked her if it was wrapped to go to one of their kids, or to sell or go into storage?  She told me she wanted to sell it...guess who's house it went too?  Hubby drove down the street and we loaded it into his truck.  It fits perfectly in this corner doesn't it?  Yippee!!!  I got to spend last evening playing with it.  :-)

At some point the drawer pulls and two of the cabinet handles were replaced with ugly chrome handles so I want to try to find something closer to the original handles and hinges that you see.
Teresa has one that looks almost exactly like it, only hers is walnut that belonged to her grandparents.  This one was painted at some time during the past approximately 100 years.  I love, love, love it!  The metal counter top pulls out to almost twice the width that you see.  Here it's pushed into it's smallest position.

I've put a few things in and on it already.
Look at this metal top.  I love imagining how many loaves of bread and pies were made on this top.  It is well worn and well loved.
This picture shows the flour sifter.  The flour bin is in the cabinet above it.
I've chosen to keep my most used cookbooks in this spot.  You can tell the sifter was used a lot as it's worn clear through the metal screen.
In the top I have some of my glassware and mason jar glasses.  I'll be adding more as I go through other cabinets.  Do you see my recipe box?  Harvest gold from high school in the 1970's.  Ha!
A few treasures.  My new angel that I found Saturday.  She was only 40 cents!  Two blue birds from Michaels I found this afternoon.  99 cents each!  
This cookbook is tucked in the corner.  I bought it while we were on vacation on the Oregon coast a few years ago.  I think I found it in Tillamook.  It has recipes from a family that lives in Oregon.  I think the cookstove on the cover is fantastic don't you?
The top drawer has three dividers. Perfect for my cloth napkins. The ones one the right I made in 1979 and they still look new.  We used them all of the time.  The other drawers are currently empty but probably not for long.
And now a few of my "makes" since I posted last.  A square heart doily.  It's about 8 inches square and not blocked yet.  Sorry for the shadows.  I took the picture at 9:00 at night.
Two more baby hats and a burial bunting.  Since I took this picture I've finished another pink bunting and a blue one.  I have several more to make this week.
Poor little Piper has a terrible cold.  When we talk to her she tells us that she's sick.  It's progressed from the nasty runny nose to a cough.  Poor baby.

And now I'm off to bed so I can get up early and go back to the lake.  It's supposed to be sunny and in the 60's tomorow.  I plan to take a few long walks and also sit and knit or crochet and look at the lake.

I hope you all have a lovely week.  It's Holy Week and I hope each of you take a moment to remember the true reason for the Easter season.  Christ came to earth, died and rose again, to give us all the opportunity to live with him in eternity forever.  Hallelujah!

Blessings,
Betsy

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Baking Day

As Happy Thursday morning everyone!  I've had a busy morning in the kitchen.  I baked banana bread with those black banana's you saw on the kitchen island in my last post.  
While the bread was in the oven I mixed up these cinnamon rolls.  The name of them is "One Hour Cinnamon Rolls" and they truly only took an hour!  They are super easy and really good.  That's a 12 x 16 inch pan so you can tell they're big.  :-)
I had one for breakfast with a glass of cold milk just a few minutes ago.  Yum!!  You use yeast and buttermilk in these with cream cheese frosting.  I don't usually have much luck with yeast rising for me, but these are perfection.  I'm so happy I've finally found a good recipe as I really like cinnamon rolls.  I'll write the recipe at the end of this post in case you would llike to try them.
This afternoon the oven will be turned back on so I can make a big pan of lasagna.  We'll have it for dinner and then I'll freeze several meals of it for Dennis while I'm gone cruising.  I'll use a mix of sausage and hamburger in the lasagna.  Mandy made it like this when we visited them and it was yummy.
As promised the last of my Easter decorations.  A branch I cut off our pear tree last spring with little eggs I got on clearance at Michaels a few years ago.  I think I paid 50 cents for them.  Good deal.
Some eggs I knitted a couple of years ago.
I received these ceramic eggs from my "secret sister" at church over 30 years ago.  Originally there were five eggs, but two have been dropped by little hands over the years.  My favorite is the pink one with the cross on it so I'm glad it's still intact.
A "birds eye" view of my birds and eggs on the coffee table.
For those of you who asked or are interested, these are the immunity supplements Dennis and I have been taking.  So far, so good.  I guess the only way we'll know if they really work or not is if we get sick!  They are cheapest on Amazon, but I have also bought them at vitamin and natural food stores.
And now, here's the recipe for the cinnamon rolls.

One Hour Cinnamon Rolls (Makes 12 rolls)

Ingredients:
1 cup wam water
3/4 cup room temperature buttermilk
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup melted butter 
3 TB regular yeast
1/2 TB salt
2 eggs
5-6 cups flour  ( I used five cups exactly.  However I'm over 2000 ft. above sea level, so sometimes          baking directions are a bit different here.)

Filling:
3 TB. melted butter
2/3 cup brown sugar
2/3 cup sugar
3 TB cinnamon

Frosting:
1/4 cup softened butter
3 cups powdered sugar
4 oz. softened cream cheese
1 tsp. vanilla
enough milk to make the frosting spreading consistency 

Instructions:

1. In a bowl mix together water, buttermilk, sugar, melted butter and yeast. Allow to sit for 15 minutes.

2. Add in salt, eggs and flour. Mix for 10 minutes and allow to sit for 10 minutes.

3. Pepaire your filling by mixing together melted butter, brown sugar, sugar and cinnamon.  Set aside. 

4. On a floured suface, roll dough into a 12 x16 inch square.

5. Spread the filling over the top and roll up.  Cut into 12 large rolls.

6. Place the rolls on a cookie sheet covered with a silpat or parchment paper.

7. Bake at 375 for 15-20 minutes.

8. While baking, mix together the frosting ingredients. Spread on warm rolls and serve.

[Recipe at Lil' Luna at http:lilluna.com/one-hour-cinnamon-rolls/]

I hope you try these and let me know how you like them.  Have a wonderful afternoon.

"Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere; I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of God than dwell in thet tents of the wicked." Psalm 84:10

Blessings,
Betsy

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Happy Thoughts on a Tuesday

Hello my friends.  It was a rainy Monday and a rainy Tuesday morning, but as I write this the sun is shining.  It is supposed to rain a bit more and it's snowing in the mountains east of us, but it is a good day!  We need the rain desperately so you'll hear no complaints from me.

I finished the baby blanket but I'm not sure where it will go.  I have lots of places to choose from and I just wish I could knit and crochet a lot faster to help with all of the needs that are out there.
One baby hat done and another almost finished.  It's a new pattern that I'm trying out.  What do you think?  It's super simple and doesn't take any counting once you cast on.
My log cabin blanket has grown just a little bit.  I had to go to Paradise Fibers and get a longer cable to go on my interchangeable needles.  This is a 60 inch cable on size 8 Hiya Hiya interchangeable tips.  I also bought some cable connectors so I can make the cable even longer when I need too.  I'm enjoying knitting this blanket even though it will take a long, long time to finish.
A  closer look at the cable and tip.  The cable is very flexible which I like a lot.
My Easter decorations are out.  See the almost black bananas in the bowl on the right?  I'm going to make banana bread tomorrow.  I also have a little Easter tree and a wreath that I'll try to remember to show you later.
A closer look at the flowers I crocheted last year for the spring/summer garland.
We went out to the lake and opened the camper last weekend.  Hurray!  We plan to spend the night there on Friday.  Another yippee!  On the way home we stopped at Clayton Burger, a burger shack in a tiny town about 3 miles from the lake.  Each season the owner changes the decorations.  I can't imagine where she stores them all.  Take a look at just SOME of the Easter decorations she has out right now.
Love the wreaths.
Lots of bunnies.
Flowers everywhere too.
I always enjoy going in and seeing the new things that are there.  Rememember, she has this much stuff and more for every holiday and season.  Amazing.

I also found a recipe yesterday for one hour cinnamon rolls.  From scratch with yeast and everything!  I'm planning to make them on Thursday for Bible study.  We'll see if they turn out.  I'll let you know and post the recipe if they do.  I can't imagine fresh, homemade cinnamon rolls in one hour.

There is SO much "crud" going around out there right now.  Everyone in Dennis' office seems to have it and lots of people at church too.  Nita has forbade me from getting sick before the cruise.  Dennis and I have both been popping immunity supplements like crazy trying to keep well.  It seems like once you get this stuff it never goes away.

And now it's time to make dinner.  Homemade macaroni and cheese with ham is on the menu tonight.  Doesn't that sound yummy on a chilly day?

Have a lovely, lovely day my friends.  I am so grateful for each one of you.

"But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anythig back.  Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because He is kind to the ungrateful and the wicked.  Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful." Luke 6:35-36

Blessings,
Betsy

Friday, March 20, 2015

A little of this. A little of that.

Hello my friends and happy Friday!

I just got an order from Amazon yesterday and this was in it.  I'm looking forward to trying one or more of these doilies.  Aren't they beautiful?
The front cover:
The back cover:
I've been working on this crocheted blanket since Monday, but honestly, I haven't had hardly any crochet or knitting time all week.  This is the result of about 5 hours work.  Almost done.  It's just a simple sc, hdc, dc stitch I made up a few years ago for a class I taught in beginning crochet.
This one is FUN!!!  Very, very time consuming, but fun.  This I started over a week ago and is probably 20-25 hours of knitting.  It's called the log cabin blanket and you just make it the size you want and then stop.  It's all garter, (knit) stitch and almost brainless knitting.  When you have 9 garter ridges of a color, you cast off all but one stitch on the needles and then pick up a stitch in each ridge on the next side.  You continue in this way, going round and round and round until you want to stop.  It's a great way to use up all of my small balls of yarn from old projects.
Here is the non-slip sole for Mandy's slippers that I also received in my Amazon order.  It comes in an 18x26 piece of cloth that you cut to fit and then sew on.  The slippers are in a box that just arrived at Mandy's a few minutes ago.  She's waiting until Piper wakes up and then they'll face time with me so I can watch her open it.  Inside are a bunch of summer clothes that I bought for her a couple of days ago.  Our local thrift store had an amazing sale and I got tons of shirts, shorts, skorts and dresses for her for only about 25.00 and they are all in very nice condition.
Also inside is Timothy of Thomas the Train fame.  See little Timothy?  Piper loves trains and Thomas and his friends in particular.  I found Timothy and popped him in the box for her.  She knows he's on his way to her house, I sent her this picture just before I went to the post office.  She'll be excited when she opens the box and I can't wait to see her face.
Mandy sent this picture the other day when they were walking by the bay.  Piper had her stuffed kitty in the stroller.  The kitty was a birthday gift from Larry and Nita.  Kitty is covered by a little rainbow blanket that I made for her dolls.  It's basically the center part of the rainblow blankets that I make for babies.  Isn't she cute?
I'm almost embarrassed to tell you all that I have yet ANOTHER trip planned in April.  I have always wanted to take a cruise, but it's not something that Dennis really wants to do.  You all know that Nita is the cruise queen!  We usually keep Sophie for her and Larry while they cruise, which was twice this winter in November and January.  She cruises on Princess lines exclusively and is an Elite member which means she gets a lot of perks when she travels.  Almost 30 cruises in the last 7 years!  

So, with the 50th anniversary of Princess the prices are really cheap this year and I'm going to the Western Carribean with Nita April 11-19.  I'm getting very excited and if I really, really like it, Dennis says maybe we can take an Alaskan cruise someday.  That's where I REALLY want to go.  But most likely, this will be the one and only cruise I ever take, so I really want to enjoy every minute of it.

By the time we get back from the cruise it will be lake time!  Yippee! 

I have mailed Grammy Braxton's blog gift but I haven't heard from Sam I Am.  Sam if you're reading this, you are one of the winners!  Could you please send me an email with your name and address?  I'll get your gift out right away.

Thank you all for reading.  I am SO grateful for each and every one of you.

"Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord."  Psalm 27:14

Blessings,
Betsy


Wednesday, March 18, 2015

And The Winners Are!!!

We have two lovely winners from the drawing to celebrate 100 followers of this blog.  Thank you to all who left such nice comments.   This is what each of the winners will recieve.

A spring journal to keep track of your crafty projects, prayers, thoughts...whatever you would like to use it for.  A  packet of colorful tissues so you're not caught without a kleenex when you need one. :-) And a washcloth and bookmark made by yours truly.  

I hope you ladies both like your gifts and that you all will keep reading.  I am so blessed to have each of you as part of my life.
And without further ado....the winners are:

Grammy Braxton 

     and

Sam I Am

Would you ladies both email me your full names and addresses to queenbetsy2@gmail.com?

Thank you again to all of you for reading, commenting and caring about me.

"Being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus,"  Phillipians 1:6

Blessings,

Betsy

Friday, March 13, 2015

Home Again!

I finally made it home late Monday afternoon and have been busy grocery shopping, cleaning and meeting with friends.  Not much time for the computer, although I have tried to read your blogs and comment.  I hope I've caught up with all of you now.  One exciting thing I noticed while at Mandy's was that I've reached 100 followers!  How exciting.  Read on my friends, and there will be an announcement.  Very mysterious aren't I?

So, just before I left home I finished this baby set in light blue.
When I got home I finished the socks for this set in pink and white.  I know they'll be going off to a charity or local hospital, I just haven't decided where.  Taci, how are you doing with your hats for Brazil?  Do you need these?
I had these blankets done up to the squares in the corners before I left home.  So I've made 72 of these little square since Monday night.  Then I joined them together and crocheted two rounds around each blanket.  Those little squares.  Goodness.  It takes forever to make 72 of them. Join them together and sew in all of the ends.  When I know the gender of the baby to recieve each blanket, I'll do a final row in a corresponding color.  I always like to have these on hand for baby gifts and as most of you know from reading this blog, I've made literally hundreds of these blankets over the years.  The look really wrinkled, but once they're finished I'll wash and dry them and they'll look wrinkle free.
Besides Mandy's slippers and Pipers two pair of socks, I made these 11 dishcloths out of Hobby Lobby's "I Love This Cotton" yarn while I was gone.  Dishcloths and socks make great airplane knitting because they don't take up much space or arm movement.
I've ordered gripper soles from Amazon for Mandy's slippers and then I'll mail them back to her.  It's supposed to arrive sometime at the end of next week.

One of the last pictures I took of my princess before I left for home.  Isn't she a doll?  She fed me a green M&M on facetime this morning.  Green is her favorite M&M so I am very priviledged that she would share with me.  Gosh I miss her hugs and kisses.
Mandy texted me this picture last night.  She and Piper only had to get a few items at the grocery store so she let Piper push the little cart around the store for the first time.  She said she did very well and stayed right with Mandy and didn't run into anyone.  How cute is this?  She's growing up way too fast for Grandma.
I had lunch today with my best friend Jenny.  We ate at Panda Express which we both enjoy.  As we ordered, we both chose the same items.  Isn't that funny?  It was really good and we had a nice chat before she had to get back to work.

It's feeling much like spring today.  68 degees!  So nice and I'm enjoying it after the cold the past few weeks.  It is supposed to rain all weekend and I really hope it does.  Everything is so dry and our snowpack is non-existent.

And now, to celebrate all of you lovely followers.  All you have to do is leave a comment and I will draw two names and each will recieve a gift from me.  I can't wait to hear from you all.  I will draw the names and announce the winners on Wednesday March 18.  I am so grateful to each and everyone of you for taking the time to read my little blog.  I have made some wonderful friends through this and I so appreciate each one of you.

I hope you are all having a wonderful week and enjoy the weekend to come.

"I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits, and in His word I put my hope.  Psalm 130:5

Amen and Amen.

Blessings my friends,

Betsy

Monday, March 9, 2015

Scenes from Washington DC

Today I'm on my way home from our Nation's capital.  I just finished a 6 hour flight and I'm sitting at Seatac airport in Seattle, WA waiting for my flight to Spokane.  We flew directly over Spokane on our way here.  I could see my neighborhood!  Could I have a parachute please?  Nope.  It will be an additional 5 hours after passing over my home before I land in Spokane.  I'm tired.  And I have a headache.  But, I digress.  Here are a few pictures I took while at Mandy's. We didn't get out much because of the weather but we did go a couple of places.

This is the frozen Cheapeake Bay from the kitchen of Brad and Mandy's friends home.  The squares are the screen in the window. No way was I going outside. It was COLD.  All of the land where you see the sun setting belongs to the Smithsonian Institute and will never be built on.
This is the view from their loft.  Can you imagine seeing this every night when the sun sets?  Gorgeous.
The next few photos are of the National Basilica to Mary in Washington DC.  That's not the exact name.  The brochure is in my suitcase somewhere in this airport and I can't remember the exact wording. I have never seen anything like this outside of Europe. It competes with St. Paul's in London and Notre Dame in Paris in my eyes.  I didn't know we had such an ornate church in the U.S.  With my Iphone photos I can only give you a small taste of the beauty.
Intricate mosaic domes in the roof.
The main cathedral.  There was a smaller one in the basement with the crypt.
There were at least 12-15 smaller chapels off of the main hall.
More mosaic domes.
Amazingly beautiful workmanship.
A drive by photo. :-). No place to park and too cold to walk anywhere.
We ate at a restaurant right by this riverboat on a section of the Potomac River that wasn't frozen.
Look!  A street named after me AND the state where I live.  It's all about me you know!  Ha!  I loved all of the row houses around town.  Some were gorgeous and well taken care of and some were horribly decrepit.  We got lost in a not so good part of town one day, but I wasn't about to be seen taking pictures there.  Scary.
Slipper socks I made for Mandy on Friday and Saturday.  See my boo-boo in the sole of the slipper on the right?  No matter.  I brought them home with me and I'm going to cover that boo-boo up with a nonskid sole and mail them back to her.  No use ripping it out when it's covered up, right?
It warmed up A LOT yesterday.  We were able to take a walk and let Piper play outside for awhile.  Most of the snow melted in the past two days.
Piper took this selfie of us last night.  I miss her so much already.
And now I need to find a restroom before I board my last flight home.  Spokane or bust!

"The thief comes only to kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full."  John 10:10

Blessings,
Betsy