Saturday, January 27, 2007

Sheep Saturday

Since Leigh ( was nice enough to link to my blog when talking about her beautiful Rare Breeds Sweater that she is knitting, I thought maybe I'd better have some sheep on here in case anyone popped in over the next day or so. As you might have read in the header, my blog was started almost a year ago to keep my friends and family updated after I received a diagnosis of uterine cancer. After my surgery was over & I was proclaimed "fit" or, anyhow, cancer free, many people asked me if I was going to keep up my blog, as they enjoyed seeing pictures of our farm & critters, and much to my surprise, they also were enjoying my writing. Never one to disappoint an audience (remember, I performed - sang & played my 12 string guitar for 21 years in the "old days" and RARELY missed a Sunday night). So I took the torch and ran with it - telling you stories about our church and family , our critters, my cooking, as well as sharing pictures of our beautiful yard that my DH works so hard to keep up with. The amazing thing is, this is my 98th post - only 2 more and I'll be at #100 - maybe that's when I'll reply to Leigh's wierd meme - (I've been working on it, I really have -
It's just hard to come up with six wierd things about myself LOL!!)

So, back to business - Sheep Saturday -

Remember Gwendolyn?

She came to live with us the first weekend in July - John has been hoping that she would stay spotted, but it looks like she's turning white. Boy is that going to be a cool lamb fleece though? I'm going to have to make sure I stay home the day we shear this year, so I can keep track of it. Her wool is long and crimpy. (here's the blog entry from her first day here:

The girls are milling around in the barn, waiting for us to finish clipping off the tip of Gwen's horn - it's just turning in too tight to her head, but we'll just keep the end clipped and it should be okay.

That's Pearl on the left - she is such a sweetie - John calls her Minnie (ie, Minnie Pearl - get it? Ok, you need to watch some old Grand Ole' Opry shows - she was the greatest!) We are worried that when Pearl is sheared there will be nothing left - she is very petite - Next to her is Anna D -

probably one of John's all time favorite sheep - she has an udder problem, so sadly, he will not be able to breed her again.
I don't know, Pearl's fleece is going to really be nice too - Maybe I'll get to keep both of them?

This is Regina - she is the daughter of Primolana Hanre and Mistic Knoll Rob. She had twin ram lambs last year - maybe this year she'll have girls (hope, hope, hope). Her wool is so long, you can hardly see her legs!

And last, but not least in the ewe department is Susie - She is Anna D's sister, but a year younger. They are all kind of skittish around me, because if I'm in the barn, it generally means worming or something icky like that. But I'm going to "sheep-sit" when John goes to Boise next month for the UU district annual meeting, so they's get used to me again. (especially if there are cookies in my pockets...)

And finally what's not to love here - no it's not some rare "siamese sheep" joined at the horns, it's just the boys having a little discussion on who gets the good bye snuggles from me in the morning.

Well, I'm off the watch "Law & Order, Criminal Intent" - I was really wanting to watch "Crossing Jordan" tonight, but I forgot - and if I had remembered, you wouldn't have gotten to see our flock. Later...

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Snack spreads for church

As newsletter editor for our church, I set up pairs of families/members to do the coffee hour every Sunday and our little church has the best snacks coming or going - (I think secretly we try to out-do each other) We were partnered with Keith & Theresa this past weekend. I had been wanting to try some cream cheese spreads, so she said she would bring the bagles & fruit. Here is what I came up with (they all have a base of light cream cheese) :

Brown Sugar, cinnamon, raisin w/toasted almonds

It was goon on the bagels - it would have been really good on some cinnamon bagel chips.

This one is Orange-cranberry with toasted Pecans - that's a glob of orange marmelade - it was supposed to be in the center.

This is "Seafood Caesar" spread - made with Surimi, celery, green onions, and caesar salad dressing. It was good on the bagels but REALLY good on the Triscuits that Theresa brought. I've been eating the leftovers on Ritz Vegi flavored crackers. Yum.

This one was the best - Tuscan Spread - it had Garlic, Black Olives, artichoke hearts, green onions and sun dried tomatoes. Let me tell you - I'll be keeping this recipe to make again. REALLY good on the Triscuits - I put the last of the leftovers with a little bit of pasta for dinner tonight. It was better on the Triscuits...
So, with mini-bagels, Triscuits, cut up bananas, apples & oranges, we ate like kings, but then we generally do.

Monday, January 22, 2007

A good way to start the week...

I belong to an email list called the Good Clean Funny List (can be found on the web at: )

Sometimes they are silly, sometimes they are really funny, sometimes they are too close to home. they are always "clean".

Here's today's funny (it falls in the "too close to home" department) :

Three older ladies were discussing the travails of getting
older. One said, "Sometimes I catch myself with a jar of
mayonnaise in my hand in front of the refrigerator and can't
remember whether I need to put it away or start making a

The second lady chimed in, "Yes, sometimes I find myself on
the landing of the stairs and can't remember whether I was
on my way up or on my way down."

The third one responded, "Well, I'm glad I don't have that
problem; knock on wood," as she rapped her knuckles on the
table. Then she told them, "That must be the door; I'll get

Ha, ha, ha! Have a good day!

Saturday, January 20, 2007

In Memory -


We would like to offer our condolences to our friends Robin & Del whose friend Scuffie Ann traveled over the Rainbow Bridge this week. We hope the happy memories of their days together help to ease the pain of her loss.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Wishful Thinking.........

This is Maui, from Oct. 04 - - just wishful thinking.....

Everything was very green & vibrant - and HOT

Did I mention it was HOT - it was so hot that even the locals were complaining! There was no A/C in our condo because it was supposed to be cooled by the trade winds.

The trade winds had stopped. We went to the Maui Ocean Center Aquarium - it was cool there. It was also air conditioned!

So this is just a little break for those of us who have been freezing our toes off this winter to remind us that when it's 95 degrees with no tradewinds -

that somewhere , there are misguided daffodils wishing it was warmer too.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Snow, snow, go AWAY!!!

Come again, some other day, and NO, I don't mean tomorrow -

What do you mean it's going to snow again tomorrow?!

Stop! Stop!

I can't take it any more!

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Not again?

This look familiar? Mother Nature has taken her opportunity to dump on us again - OK, so once a winter, I can take, but enough is enough. The dufus brothers took the opportunity to play a little kick ball with their water bucket, so this afternoon, they were out munching on snow. Actually, the girls had water and they were out munching on snow too - must feel like eating a snow cone, don't you think...

The roads have been pretty scarey - but I made it to work every day - here's our driveway after a lot of shoveling on the part of my DH - It's pretty much a straight shot now that the county has been through a couple of times -

Yesterday John took me in, with my 8 dozen cookies in hand - they disappeared in no time at all - To celebrate my birthday my friend & co-worker Tamara took me to lunch at our favorite Chinese buffet - and John came and picked me up at the end of the work day & we went to the Black Angus for dinner and then off to get groceries for the next week. All in all, it was an OK birthday!

When I got home from work on Wednesday, John said "We got a package from Skittles!" What could it be - we couldn't imagine - Our friends Kathy & Ralph from Sheep Thrills Farm sent us a this cute little ceramic ewe - I have decided to name her Penelope - & she wants to know what all this cold white stuff is? She looks like she'd like to go back to Arizona - but from what I hear, it's not much better down there Penelope - welcome to Marietta Shetlands!

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

When it's your birthday, You bring the snacks...

We have 40 people at work, which makes for a lot of birthdays (40 of them, to be exact). Sometime before I started, (13 years ago - when we only had 16 employees) they decided, that it was getting to be too much work for the offfice gal to go get treats when someone had a birthday, so they set it up that if it's your birthday, & you want snacks to celebrate, you need to bring them. So, with Friday being my 55th birthday (!) I set about making some cookies. I decided to make Farmgirl's Decidedly Different Chocolate Chip cookies.

They are supposed to have raisins in them, and of course, I forgot to get them at the store last week, so they just had chocolate chips, and I didn't have any nutmeg, so I used extra cinnamon, and I used regular butter, so I only used 1/2 teaspoon of salt - they were just right - & instead of using a 1/4 cup scoop, I used my small scoop (and only baked them for 12 minutes) because I wanted 4 dozen cookies to take in - and if I hadn't eaten so much of the dough (well, it was good!) - I would have probably had almost 5 dozen cookies, but then, who's counting?
Which gives me an opportunity to show you one of my favorite baking pans - my Pampered Chef Bar Pan - well loved and I haven't burned a cookie in the past 6 years!

Tomorrow night I'll make The World's Best Chocolate Chip Cookies - a variation of Killer Chocolate Chip cookes from an old Diane Mott Davidson mystery novel ( ) - They have dried tart cherries, a little oatmeal and toasted almonds, and are supposed to have two kinds of chocolate chips, but it is very snowy & slick out and John will probably take me to work tomorrow, so they will only have good old Nestles choco chips. They truly are the best chocolate chip cookies that I've ever eaten.
Oh, and congratulations to Susan at Farmgirl Fare ( ) She won the Best Food Blog, Rural award from Well - (you can read all about it on her site - someday maybe I'll figure out how to do it so I don't have to put the URL on here)
It's late, & I'm off to watch Medium - hope it's not a rerun.

Monday, January 08, 2007

Caps to the Capitol

My crocheting skills are pretty rudimentary - I can crochet a baby blanket - my favorite pattern is called "Alternating Puff" - two SC, then 3 DC in one SC, etc, etc. It makes a very cool pattern - especially in a variegated baby yarn - (I always use a yarn that can be thrown in the washer & dryer - I figure that new moms don't have time to screw around with fancy care for baby blankets)

The blanket I just finished was actually started for a little girl who is in kindergarten now - so, I'm not a very fast crocheter either...

But something recently caught my attention. In mid December, My friend Nancy, who has a yarn shop in Bellingham called NW Handspun Yarns ( ) emailed an "Action Kit" from Save the Children & Warm Up America Foundation called "Caps to the Capital" - Actually that's the link for the Save the Children Foundation web site page about this project. Quoting from their web site: "After Save the Children's State of the World's Mothers 2006 report highlighted simple, low-cost practices that could save newborn lives, like warming their heads with a knit or crochet cap, Save the Children received numerous calls and e-mails from Americans around the country wanting to organize their friends and family to knit and crochet caps for newborns in developing countries."

This blossomed into a project that culminated on Jan. 2, 2007, with over 50,000 caps being made in all 50 states and donated to this wonderful cause. Called "Caps to the Capitol" - the Save the Children Foundation was going to present the caps with messages to GW to show that Americans want to do more to save the lives of newborn children all around the world. Here is a link to their video - it was very cool to watch and realize that my three caps were part of this big project

The Action Packet had directions for caps - knitted & crocheted - I figured, OK, I can try that -(they requested that you use the patterns that they provided, because they were smaller and designed to fit the heads of babies born in developing countries - many are born premature and have very tiny heads) So, I made the first one, had to take out part of it, because I didn't read the directions right and left out "rows 9 - 13".... Oops - well if at first you don't succeed... anyhow, I think they look like little Easter eggs, don't you . . . As you can see, I ended up making three of them and got them to Nancy's shop the day before she was going to send them in. She had 137 caps just from here in Whatcom County - I wish I'd had my camera, she had them strung on a line in her store windows - they looked very festive! Many Thanks & Kudos to Nancy for spearheading this local effort!

I figure they will do this again, so I'm working on some more caps - next time I'll be ready, and next time, I'll make sure I let you know sooner, so you can knit or crochet a cap of your own to help save a child's life.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Christmas - Belated

This was "off year" for the "T" family Christmas - everyone went to the "in-laws" (or in our case, just stayed home and had a brief moment of relaxation) - so we always try to get together someplace, either the week before or the week after the big date. This year we opted for the week after - in conjunction with my oldest sister's 45th wedding anniversary - and got together at their home in Mossyrock. It was fun for all (except my sister, who had way too many holiday parties this year) - all three of my nephews were there & their families - in order of age - Chris, Jen & Parker, with his mom (my sister)

That's Jake smooching the family dog - his girls are going to be basketball stars, I think - they are getting so tall! His wife is a "Jen" too!

And these two handsome guys are Ben and Dante' - Ben is going to school at Central - He'd like to be a teacher - watching him with the kids this past weekend, I think he'd be a good one.
Here they are with Ben's mom & dad - the white lady in the bunch, that's my other older sister.

This is my "baby" sister Nance - (that's Aunt Nance to you, Parker). Even though we talk every week, we don't get to see each other very often. Nance is a "shopper extraordinare" - she's one of those people who start shopping for Christmas in January, for pete's sake! (it's worth it tho - she gives great presents!!)

Last, but not least, me and DH/the shepherd - an "only" who gracefully (mostly) puts up with my family 2 or three times a year - and who is mystified by the fact that I have to talk to my sisters at least two or three times in the week before I 'm going to see them - (we have to plan, you know!) We had a blissfully uneventful trip down & back (it's about 200 miles or so one way) - although, he asked me how I knew that, seein' as how I slept most of the way...ha, ha, ha

All in all, it was a GRRREATTT! weekend.

See, we promised we'd be nice to the farm sitter - we didn't butt at him even once!