Finally Friday

I am so blessed. Dan and I have been married for twenty-one years. Prior to that, I was divorced for sixteen years. My ex husband had a huge family, since he was the middle of seven children. We actually babysat some of the older nieces and nephews in our early dating and marriage. Some were in high school when we divorced.

Some of the nieces send us Christmas cards. I feel so lucky to receive this mail from them! I can hardly believe their children are so grown and handsome, and the girls themselves are women of strength and spirit. I thank God for those continued relationships even after all these years. Christmas bears gifts of the type you least expect. And those are the best surprises!

Today was another day working on the quilting project I’m finishing for a friend. The deadline is whenever it’s finished, and that will be before January 1, 2020, so I’m not concerned about anything. It’s good not to be stressed during this busy week.

I’m hoping all of you stay well during the next week, too. I hear the flu is at high in Nebraska, based on the number of prescriptions for flu filled at Walgreens. Isn’t it interesting how data is collected sometimes? I wonder how their figures are broken out by age and sex? Have these people had flu shots?? I hope they all recover with no further complications. Flu can be such a wretched disease. The Babe and I are no longer in the “under 65” age category, so we are in more danger of being very ill. Yes, give us the big flu shot, and the jumbo shingles shot, too. Anything else you have for people of a certain age? Sign us up.

Yes, the time is getting shorter before Christmas. I only have two gifts to wrap, for Gavin, and I hope we have enough wrapping left to do those two gifts. I do wish we had more to wrap, it wasn’t a bad task overall. It used to take me a couple of nights (very late at night) to wrap gifts when the kids were still at home.

If you are driving to where you will be celebrating Christmas, please be careful. In the Omaha, Nebraska area alone, there have been several fatal accidents. Many were folks not wearing seat belts, some were speeding and using alcohol, some were due to weather. Please be careful as you travel, we want you back home safe and sound.

Once again, thank you so much for reading today. I appreciate it from the bottom of my heart. And I’ll see you back here tomorrow. One day closer! Have a good evening.

Winsome Wednesday

Tonight was a regular food night at our VFW, Post 2503. We sit with a table of friends every week of the year. It is fun every week, just commenting on various topics with people you see every week.

It struck me as almost sad that next week we won’t be here with our friends, and it will be January 8, 2020 until we are all together again. In the past couple of years, we have lost so many of our people in the past couple of years, it makes me really consider how fragile life is. From one week to the next, you just never know. From a shipmate to my uncle and his brother on the USS ESSEX in the Korean War to a man who was a cousin to someone I went to school with all my life, to the kindest gentleman I ever met who was the representative for Poppies for the Post. Another man was so generous with his stash of things from Harbor Freight, he was always sharing tape measures, flashlights, scissors, and other things he collected. They all have gone on to their eternal rewards. We miss them and remember them with love. I hope we don’t lose too many more too soon. It’s tough enough with these wonderful folks being gone, but to lose more of them would be difficult.

The tree in the Canteen at VFW Post 2503.

Whatever is ahead of any of us in the next year or even two weeks, we will go through it together. Friends we haven’t even met yet will help us make it through difficulties in our futures. God has put people in our paths for us to partner with through difficulties that we cannot even imagine. We are all here to help each other in any way we can.

This approaching Christmas, let’s be mindful of our neighbors and friends, let’s check in with each other just to be sure all is ok.

Keeping our neighbors and friends close to us is a great way to know our neighbors and that all is well in our surrounding areas. We are better for caring about others. Our lives are richer for caring for others.

Thank you for reading today. I’ll be here tomorrow, and hope you are, too.

Thinking Thursday

Today was a weird day. The Babe (bless his heart) took the dogs to the lower level all day while I cleaned carpets. As I’ve said before, with a puppy in the house, they needed cleaning. I wanted to do them before I put up our new Christmas tree, so today was the day. It took several hours. I’m always amazed at what gets picked up, as well as what is picked up with the vacuum. Good thing we have those helpers in this modern world.

One thing I discovered today is all the magazines on my side table in the living room. Yes, I still subscribed to magazines until recently. I have two piles of magazines for quilting, sewing, coutour sewing, and others from Omaha Magazine, and Smithsonian Magazine. Quite a few were free subscriptions, and I’m a sucker for printed matter, especially that I can learn from. Does anyone else subscribe to magazines anymore? I do.

As most of them were for hobbies, there comes a time when you realize you probably will never, ever have enough time to make even half of those quilts you affixed a Post It note to. And don’t get me started about the outfits I once sewed with great success. I did love creating clothing throughout my life. I sewed my clothes, my kids’ clothes, and many, many beautiful bridesmaids dresses. And dressed two beautiful brides. I loved every minute of it.

I tried picking up where I left off with clothing construction a few years ago. And wow! It really was different! The patterns were way different the way they explained how to do things. Some were better, some were way worse, some made no sense at all. Sizing?? Well, the patterns for a younger, fitter me were quite different than the ones for retired, post-menopausal and breast cancer me. And fitting?? I used to be 5’9″ tall, much smaller in the waist, almost no bustline, and a bit hippy. I’m now 5’5″ tall, have nearly no waist, quite a bustline, and still hippy. Twenty five years ago, I could always just lengthen the torso, adjust the waistline, lengthen sleeves, crotch depth, and presto, change-o! There was a perfectly fitting garment. I’ve made a couple of tops in the past three years, nothing too great.

I do need to make the decision about to sew or not to sew. I have a lot of great fabric purchased for a lot of great clothes, along with a lot of great fabric for some really nice quilts, so next year will be the year of truth. I will either go back to creating clothing or I will not. If I do not, I will find a local school who is participating in the complete education of kids which will include domestic arts, sewing, or whatever you want to call it. It is a wonderfully creative art. You will not be outfitted like anyone else. That is what I loved about it. I just need to find out how to fit my later in life body. Quite a challenge.

It’s a funny thing about me. I see clothing on tv or in print, and I wonder how they made it. I see an outfit on a rack, and I have to touch the fabric and see what kind of body it has. I have to look at the seams and the lining and see how it was made. I wonder if that looks or sounds strange?? It’s just a huge part of me. And no matter how long you wait, certain things always come back in style. The “modern” sleep sacks for babies?? I made many of them in 1971 when I was expecting my first baby. I finally gave them to Goodwill a couple of years ago. They were still in great shape, clean, unstained. I tried to give them to homes for unwed mothers, but they only accepted new things. That made me sad. I hope someone got them that enjoyed them.

Whether or not I continue sewing clothing, I will for sure keep quilting. Even if I make a quilt from a pattern and use the same color ways as the pattern, it’s still my own creation. It’s amazing how I can see the progression in my skills in quilting over the past fifteen years. I know fifteen years from now, I will be able to see the improvement in my writing, too.

All of these hobbies I have are creative and they all take practice. All of them. I enjoy it all a lot. If only there were more hours in a day!

Tomorrow is definitely decorate the tree day. It will be fun. I hope you all have a good evening. Thank you for reading today, and I hope to see you again tomorrow.