Friday, January 31, 2014

Nana's Treasures

 Upstairs in the children's play area, I had painted a letter for each grandchild. But they were looking rather worn and with the addition of Elliott, I decided to make something new for the grands.  I saw this cute idea on Pinterest.  I went by Hobby Lobby and picked up the letters, scrap book paper and alphabet stickers. I would estimate that each finished letter costs about six dollars.  Of course most crafters have lots of paper, glue etc so this is really an easy project.  I used modge podge to glue the paper to the wooden letters then Aleene's tacky glue was used to glue the tabs with the child's name on the paper. Did you know Aleene's tacky glue can now be purchased in a pen for fine gluing? I love it! I chose purple scrap book paper for this K because Kendall loves purple!
 Landon is my blue is his favorite color. I also added the year they were born to the letter to make it special.
 Margaret is my pink girl!
 I really liked how Baylor's turned out!  It is hard to find more masculine scrap book paper!!
 And my newest treasure, sweet Elliott.  I got these letters done and hung up on the wall in the play area. It is good to get one project for the new year completed! Now to see if the grands notice their new personalized letters.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Thawing Out

Well it is a very chilly morning here in NoALA(North Alabama). But we are heartened to know the temps should climb to the 40s today and will melt the snow and ice that has plagued much of the deep South.  My son got home yesterday!! He walked part of the way and a good Samaritan took him the rest of the way. I have heard so many stories of people who were out there helping the stranded out water and sandwiches, towing people up hills etc. Apparently the weathermen are saying that this storm changed course and hit so suddenly that the local weathermen could not warn people in time. We have gotten rather lax about listening to the weathermen as so often they call for snow then nothing happens. This was a good wake up call for all of us in the South. Be weather wary!! I think Nancy will make it home from Atlanta today as well. So glad of the protection of my family in this winter storm.

Marvin and I are off to therapy this morning. He is doing well with rehab....walking around the house with a cane instead of a walker. I am beginning to make him do more for himself this week. It is a good way to build strength and confidence in his new knee. Have a blessed day friends...thanks for your prayers!

Wednesday, January 29, 2014


That is what the people of the South are calling this winter storm that landed yesterday. Fortunately here in north Alabama we only got a few flurries. But 90 miles south in Birmingham, four inches of snow and ice shut down the city, stranding many weary citizens. My son, Ben, spent the night at his office. I was glad that he was safe inside and not out on the road. Katy and the children will be happy for him to get home, hopefully this afternoon.  Daughter in law, Nancy, was in Atlanta for business with a co worker and managed to make it to shelter around ten last night.  I am so thankful for all those churches and businesses who offered shelter to those caught in the storm. I know four inches does not sound like a lot of snow to my northern friends but we have virtually NO snow removal here as we seldom need it. The salt trucks did not get out on the roads in time to de ice the roads leading to many accidents. Atlanta was just as bad  and worse because it is a big city and lots of people were caught unawares. Pray that today the sun will melt this mess and allow everyone to be on their way. I read that a baby girl was born on I 285 in Atlanta yesterday as mom could not get to the hospital. Several suggested she be named Peri, short for The Perimeter as 285 is known in Atlanta.  That mom will have quite the story to tell her little one as she grows up!

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

R is for Reading

While staying in with Marvin I have had a chance to read two good books in the last week. The first one was The Girl in the Gatehouse by Julie Klassen. I have enjoyed all of Ms Klassens novels. She is a writer who researches her facts and writes realistically about the time period of the novel. The Girl in the Gatehouse takes place in the early 1800s, the Jane Austen era.  Mariah is a young woman who has been caught in a scandal and is banished from her family to stay in a gate house at her aunt's remote country home. Mariah's childhood governess accompanies her grown up charge as she goes to her exile. While Mariah's father gives her some money to live on, it is not enough so she decides to try her hand at writing. Back in those days, proper young ladies did not "write" and many of the books declared to be written by women were actually written by men.  Mariah's secret life leads to many complications but at the novel ends happily ever after!  I don't know about you but on these cold dreary winter days inside, I need a cheery read!

The other book is The Secret Keeper by Kate Morton, one of my favorite modern authors.  This fourth book does not disappoint!  The book opens with a 13 year old girl hiding away in a tree house when she sees a strange man approach her mother and baby brother. Laurel watches in horror as her mother stabs the man to death with a knife she held in her hand. A knife that was to be used to cut her baby brother's birthday cake. Laurel gives evidence to the police that her mother killed the man in self defence. However deep down, she wonders why the man knew her mother's name and why her mother killed the man.  Years pass, as her mother is dying, Laurel decides to get to the bottom of the mystery that has been at the back of her mind all these years. What follows is a riveting tale of WW2, love, loss and envy. Secrets are revealed and Laurel's mother is able to die in peace. I really had a hard time putting this one down!

I have also read a stinker that I did not finish. Local Souls by Allan Gurganus sounded like it would be a good read. And this is the man who wrote, Oldest Living Confederate Widow Tells All, a book that I enjoyed many years ago. However his new effort was just rather bizarre. After about 70 pages, I decided I could take no more and it will go back to the library unread.

Any suggestions for other good books to read? I am always looking for new titles!

Monday, January 27, 2014


Here is my oldest girlie in her new glasses!! Now both of my grandgirls wear glasses. And they look so cute in them too!! Kendall's class at school  had an eye screening and she brought home a note saying she needed further evaluation. Her step mom, Tara, took her to the optometrist and now she is wearing glasses. Her American Girl Doll, Molly, also wears glasses!!  Kendall has always wanted glasses. I think she thought they were cool.:) I am hoping they do help her to see better and that she will enjoy reading even more.  Of course Nana cannot wait to get a photo of Kendall and Margaret together looking cool in their eyeglasses.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

A Quiet Sunday at Home

I usually do not post on Sundays as we are off to church. But as Marvin recovers from knee surgery we are on a different schedule. No church until he can walk a bit better and with all the flu around, we decided we will avoid crowds as much as possible. We have both had flu shots but apparently that is no guarantee that you will not catch an atypical strain of the flu.  We have had six flu deaths here in Decatur since the first of the year, including several young people.  Just another reminder that we are not invincible.

The recovery is going well. Friday afternoon some of our friends brought us two casseroles. My next door neighbor brought over a peanut butter pie! Then yesterday, Charles and Nancy dropped by with donuts. Today another couple from Sunday School is picking up lunch and coming to eat with us! I may have to go on a strict diet after this month!! Marvin is tolerating the pain and continues to do his exercises every day. We will be heading to therapy tomorrow and hoping for a good report! Have a blessed day friends.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Remember this Face?

If you are a fan of the movie, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, you will know this is sadistic Nurse Ratchet.  Marvin teases me by calling me Nurse Ratchet. I told him that he better hope I am not this evil nurse as I am in charge of his care for the next few weeks.

We saw One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest while we were dating. It was also on the big screen while I was doing my Psychiatric Nurse Clinical and it was a little too close for comfort!! No one can forget the characters in this Oscar winning movie.

We arrived home this afternoon and Marvin is in his recliner with a blankie and the logs on. It feels very cozy. We will be in all weekend, doing our exercises here at home then we go to rehab on Monday afternoon. It will be nice to have some couple time to watch movies, read, chat and take a few drives once Marvin is up to it. Thanks for all the love and concern shown to us here in the Blogworld.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Totally Agree

Like Dorothy and Mary Engelbreit, I agree there is no place like home. After a week in the hospital we look forward to coming home tomorrow afternoon. Then we will start outpatient therapy next week. Marvin's physical therapist is very pleased with his progress so that is a wonderful thing. We have been glad to have all the medical expertise at our fingertips at Decatur General but we will be glad to be home tomorrow evening, sipping hot chocolate and watching Grimm! Thanks for all the prayers and best wishes. We are on the road to recovery!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

I Heart Monograms!!

 Please check out these sweet things made by my fellow blogger, Dixie Delights. She has an Etsy store that now sells these cute notebooks and bag tags! She is one talented lady and a Georgia Tech Grad to boot!! You can find her blog on my side bar and there is a link to her store on her blog.
 I have never seen a monogram I did not like! Maybe I just like seeing my name and initials on all of my belongings. :)  The bag tag is now gracing the Vera Bradley bag I am taking to the hospital each day. I chose this light pink Lily Pulitzer Design but you can find several different styles at Amanda's etsy shop.
I will be using this notebook to keep special sayings, drawings etc. It just makes me happy and inspired when I look at it. I am sure I will be ordering more of these beauties.

Third Day post op and Marvin is doing very well! He was able to get rid of the hospital gown and tubes today so that was progress in itself. We are learning how to get out of the bed and walk. Marvin will still need some help for days to come but I am feeling confident we can make it at home when we are discharged on Friday. Thanks for all your prayers and concern for my sweet husband.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Little Bit

Here is six week old Elliott....he is chubbing up!!
 Grandpa with his Grimm boys, Baylor and Elliott.
Nana and her precious boy. It is so nice to have a baby in the family again.

Marvin update....Today he was up walking and did very well. Tomorrow he will get all his tubes out (ivs and drains) so he will go from IV Morphine to pain meds by mouth. I am praying that all will go well and he will continue to make progress. His therapists remind him that it is a process.

Today has been a sad day as another friend left us for heaven. It was unexpected so it is still hard to believe. Please pray for a family who has lost husband, father and grandfather. We spent many Sundays eating lunch at their home. They were the kind of people who reached out to others and made everyone feel loved and appreciated. Rest in Peace dear friend.

Monday, January 20, 2014

This and That!

 More of my towel purchases....a cotton towel with elephants....Roll Tide!
 Another big cotton towel from The Cottage on Bank Street. It has a recipe for Biscuits and pancakes.
And finally another cotton towel from the Loveless Cafe in Nashville. I love real cotton towels. They dry dishes like nobody's business.

And an update on Marvin. We were up at 4:30 and on our way to the hospital at 5:30.  We settled into our preop room which was toasty warm by the way. It always seems hospital rooms are quite chilly.  We were visited by the anesthesiologist then the physician's assistant and finally our favorite orthopedic doctor, Scott.  Marvin actually worked with Scott at Lockheed years ago when Scott was an engineer. Scott had a dream of going to med school and he made his dream a reality by become an orthopedist.  We felt really comfortable with Scott as our doctor.  Marvin was in surgery at 9:15 and to recovery by 10:30. By noon he was in his room, snoozing away. The first day of surgery they keep you heavily medicated. The second day will be a challenge as he will start rehab. Everyone who has had a knee replacement has encouraged Marvin that the first days are rough but he will be glad that he did it in the not so distant future.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Dishtowels and Bibs

 It seems I have been on a dishtowel buying spree lately. So many of my dishtowels were getting old and grimy. It  was time for some new ones. My friend, Jamie Howard, who owns The Funky Peacock etsy store, made these just for me.  If you cannot see the black one very says Sweet Home on the replica of our state, Alabama. She is so talented. I also needed some new bibs for Nanaland and Jamie made these for me. She made three for me and I gave one to Lanier to take home for her grands.

 This one matches my kitchen! Blue, Black and White.
 You can never have too many bibs. I even make Landon wear one if he is eating something here before heading off to preschool.  Come to think of it, some adults could probably use a bib!
Red is one of my favorite colors and I love this cheery black and red. Red and Black are also the colors for Decatur High School Red Raiders! Please visit Jamie's store on Etsy. She has so many cute things for sale.

We are spending a quiet day at home. Lanier suggested we skip church today with so much flu and sickness around and we took her advice. I want Marvin to be rested up before he has surgery tomorrow as we know that the rehab is very challenging. We are anticipating a visit from our children and the grands this afternoon so we get some loving in before our week at the hospital.  We have to be at DGH at six am tomorrow so it will be a very long day. Thanks for all the prayers and good wishes. My blog time may be limited this week but I will try to check in for updates on Marvin's progress.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Getting Ready

Marvin and I have been getting ready for his new knee. We attended joint camp at Decatur General on Wednesday and it was very helpful. A nurse from the orthopedic floor spoke with us about what to expect post surgery. She emphasized taking your pain meds liberally at the beginning so the pain does not become unmanageable. Poor Marvin has had so much intense knee pain over the last two weeks that he feels surgery could not be any worse. I hope he is right.  A physical therapist spoke at length about physical therapy options and handed out pages of exercises to do pre and post op.  We were delighted to meet up with an old friend at Joint Camp who is having bilateral knee replacements. She told us that she wanted to get it over with and to be able to play with her grandchildren.  I think Joint Camp was good preparation for surgery.  We met several people who will be on the same floor having various joints replaced so we will see some familiar faces while we are there.

Yesterday I went out shopping to get Marvin "hospital clothes". I think we are just about ready for Monday. I have a bag packed with cross stitch and books to take to the hospital so I can have something to do while sitting with my honey.

Prayers for a successful surgery and uneventful recovery will be much appreciated!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Fun with Lanny!

My sis in love, Lanier, was having some painting done at her house and she came to stay with us while the paint fumes died down. We have had so much fun! Monday and Tuesday we just chilled here at home, chatting and watching movies. Wednesday, Marvin and I had joint camp at Decatur General to prepare for his knee replacement on Monday. When that was over, Lanier and I did some shopping down on Bank Street. Lanier has been on the hunt for more small chairs for her grandchildren and we found four at Tammy Eddy antiques. I have three now so I think I have enough for my grands. It is nice when the little ones can sit in their own cozy chairs and have a snack or eat a meal in comfort.  I found some more linen cocktail napkins with G's on them at  for my collection at Tammy's as well as some cotton dish towels at The Cottage.  We stopped in at Memi's where I purchased an anniversary gift for Ben and Katy. They will celebrate five years next week! Last night Lanier treated us to dinner at Mellow Mushroom and we surely did enjoy that fellowship. I am going to be sorry to see her leave today. We needed some fun company before Marvin's surgery. And she and Lee gave us a Panera card to use while Marvin is recuperating so we will be set for some meals.  We hope to go to Memphis to see Lee and Lanier before Marvin has to go back to work. They just did a big kitchen remodel and I cannot wait to see it.

Off to Friend Day lunch at Back Alley Bistro. What would we do without friends and family? I have been greatly blessed by both!!

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

My Little Artist

Here is Kendall with her latest art work. She is ready for Valentine's Day!!

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Sister Schubert Breakfast Casserole

I am not sure where this recipe came from, I found it in an old craft bag in my closet. I am sure I had intentions of making it but misplaced the copy.  I prepared it for our Sunday School Class on Sunday morning and it got good reviews. I usually follow a recipe exactly the first time I make it and then tweak if necessary. However I did change this one a bit and I do not think the taste suffered at all.

Sister Schubert's Breakfast Casserole

1 package of Sister Schubert Sausage rolls
8 large eggs( I used 6)
1 tsp dry mustard
1/2 tsp black pepper
2 Tablespoons Worcestershire Sauce
4 cups half and half ( I used 3)
dash of tobasco sauce
2 cups sharp cheddar cheese

Slice each sausage roll into three pieces and place in casserole dish.( If I make it again, I will probably just cut them in half). Sprinkle with cheese.

In separate bowl, mix eggs, half and half and seasonings.  Pour over rolls and cheese. Cover tightly and refridgerate over night. Bake at 325 for 50 t0 55 minutes until set.  Let stand five minutes before serving.  

This recipe looks very pretty in one of the Skyros casserole dishes that my sister in love, Lanier, gave to me as a hostess gift at Thanksgiving.  Hope you and your family will enjoy it! If you are a southerner you know Sister Schuberts rolls cannot be beat!!

Monday, January 13, 2014

Etsy Find

I do not decorate much for Valentine's Day but when I saw this cute heart on Etsy, I knew it would look great on my front door. I purchased it from Amberlynn's Door Decor shop.  I have my eye on an Easter cross from her shop as well.

Off to have coffee with two of my old Central Weekday School buddies. Hot coffee from Panera will taste good this morning.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Two for One

I love shopping at Publix when they have their buy one get one free products that I actually use! I have found that in January, Publix is a good place to restock the pantry. My own pantry was rather bare after the holidays. Today I was even more excited as I found my favorite Swiss Miss Dark Chocolate Sensation on sale as a bogo.  I also found an interesting new product...Nabisco Premium Saltine crackers can now be found in a round cracker( Like a saltine Ritz). My grands love saltine crackers! And Honey grahams were also bogo! They will be perfect to have with our hot chocolate in the evening.

Now I have a long afternoon stretching before me. I will probably get started on some laundry, work on my cross stitch and do some reading. Tonight Grimm will be on tv at the Grimm house...the perfect Friday evening!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

My Favorite Reads of 2013

I love to read and in 2013 I made a decision to watch less tv and read more. Thanks to my Good Reads account, it is easy to look back over the last year of reading and decide which ten books were my favorites. These are my picks...enjoyed every one of them but I realize all readers have different tastes. My oldest son sticks to non fiction, my daughter and I share a lot of the same interests in novels, younger son loves academic books and all things Tolkien.  My husband was not much of a reader as he reads all day at work but this year he has read a lot of writings by Catholic and Jewish scholars. Leave me a comment telling me of a book you have enjoyed..I am always looking for a new book to read!!

1. In This House of Brede by Rumer Godden.  I loved this book about an older lady who leaves behind the hustle and bustle of office life to become a nun.
2. Swan Place by Augusta Trobaugh   This is my favorite Trobaugh book. If you are looking for a writer who really takes you to the heart of the South, you will enjoy all Ms Trobaugh's books.
3. Dry Grass of August by Anna Jean Mayhew   The first novel by a 70 something year old lady. Another Southern theme that rang true with me.
4.The End of Your Life Book Club by Will Schwalbe. I read several books about end of life this year. This one was a touching story of a mother and son and their love of reading that helped them through some difficult times.
5.Still Alice by Lisa Genova. Ok, my friends MADE me read this book and I am glad I did. It is an honest look at a very sad subject, Alzheimers.  Ms Genova is an excellent writer and I have enjoyed all of her books.
6.The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Deffenbaugh.   The story of a young woman who has been in foster care all of her life and comes to find a love of flowers that will change her life.
7.The 13th Tale by Diane Setterfield  Any book lover will enjoy this tale of a young woman who was raised in a antique book store and her meeting with the mysterious Ms Winter who weaves tales.
8.Major Pettigrew's Last Stand by Helen Simonson  A recent widower who withstands the onslaughts of all the single ladies in his village and falls in love with a very different type of lady.
9.The Little Way of Ruthie Lemming by Rod Dreher Another book about dying but dying with dignity and humor. It also reminds each of us that the little things we do for others make a difference.
10.To The Field of the Stars by Kevin Codd   My favorite book about the Camino de Santiago!

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Krusteaz Does it Again

I love Krusteaz products so when I saw this sourdough bread, I knew I had to try it. With the cold temps here, I made a batch of potato soup yesterday. I thought this would be a great time to try my sourdough bread. It was delicious and very easy to make. I baked mine on my pizza stone and it came out looking very much like the picture on the box. And it tasted good!! Especially with a dab of butter spread on a slice of the bread. I love baking but I have never been able to make yeast breads successfully.  Now I am looking forward to trying more of the artisan breads! If you want to impress dinner guests, this will do it!!

And I am proud to say that the temperatures are climbing today! It is 28 at ten am and should be up in the 40s by this afternoon.  It sure is nice to hear the furnace finally shut off!!  And to think it will be in the 60s by Saturday is just almost unbelievable after this brutal cold. No complaining about it though!!

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Hot Chocolate Weather

Well it seldom gets cold enough in Alabama for me to really enjoy hot chocolate in this stage of my life.  I have to say that my internal heater is helping me to get through this cold spell.:) I had this Swiss Miss Hot Chocolate served to me by friend, Susan, and I am now addicted to it!!  It is so chocolately and if it is too hot, add a splash of half and half!! We all know we need more calories in cold weather. That's my story and I am sticking to it!! If you are looking for some really good hot chocolate, this is it. I purchase mine at Walmart and it is not too expensive but I noted in some customer reviews that other stores have bumped up the price to around six dollars a box!! No matter how good it was, I would not pay that for it!!   Our temps are supposed to be back up in the 50s and 60s by the weekend and I am really looking forward to that. This GRITS(Girls Raised in the South)Girl is ready for warmer weather!!

Monday, January 6, 2014

Young Nurses

The Class of June 1976 at Georgia Baptist Hospital School of Nursing. Thanks to Facebook I was able to get a copy of this picture from friend and former suitemate, Terrie. This picture was taken just before we graduated. We were wearing the uniform of our choice and our nursing caps that we were so proud of!! I am in the third row from the top...second young lady on the left!(click to enlarge) Seeing all these sweet young faces took me back to a happy time when the whole world lay before us. I have been able to stay in contact with my closest friends and facebook has reconnected me to many of my classmates. a I am happy to find out where they are and what they are up to these days.  Hope you enjoyed this blast from the past.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

The Not So Sunny South!

Well we are going to receive some of the coldest air since the early 1990s  on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. Schools are already calling for a late start on all three days so children are not standing out at bus stops in the bitter cold. Hey, I think we should all hibernate for those three days. Our Southern blood is just not up to doing battle with those kinds of temps.  My heart goes out to all my blog friends in the north who are dealing with bitter temps as well as snow.

Today is a nice sunny day with temps in the mid 40s so I am going to run out to do a few errands before we are forced inside!! Marvin and I have been inside all of the Christmas break as his bad knee has been bothering him. We saw our friendly orthopedist, Scott, and he gave him a steroid shot in the knee and scheduled Marvin for a total knee replacement on January 20th. Prayers will be appreciated! Marvin says that the knee replacement could not hurt any more than his knee hurt these last two weeks. I hope( and pray) that he will do great and this will be a life changing event. He injured his knee thirty years ago and had surgery on his ACL so we knew a knee replacement was in the future. Turns out the future is NOW.

I need to cross stitch a birth sampler for Elliott so while I am tending to Marvin I hope to get that completed as well as a few other projects.  Have a blessed Saturday Friends...stay warm!!

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Nothing Like a Dame!

Two of my favorite actresses have finally been made Dames of the British Empire for their contributions to the screen. Angela Lansbury and Penelope Keith were named to receive this honor in the Queen's New Years Honors.

Angela Lansbury, a native of England, started her acting career in the movie, Gaslight. She was just a teenager then and she was nominated for best supporting actress for that role. I love many of her movies but my favorite role for Ms Lansbury is Jessica Fletcher in Murder She Wrote. To this day it is one of my favorite tv programs and I have many of the dvds to prove it. Angela Lansbury is such a gracious lady and deserves this wonderful honor at the age of 88!

Penelope Keith is one of my favorite Britcom actresses. I liked her as Margo Ledbetter in Good Neighbors and I really enjoyed her in To the Manor Born. In both shows, she plays a very bossy lady who knows best for everyone around her! Her crystal clear English accent is a delight and her comical timing is perfection.

Congrats Angela and Penelope!! Thanks for sharing your acting talent with all of us!

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Happy New Year

Happy New Year from me and Mary Engelbreit! 2013 is one for the books now. We had good times and sad times in the last year. January started with me falling and smacking my head...thank goodness there was nothing much in there to be hurt seriously!:) In March we celebrated Baylor's second birthday with all the cousins here for a Nana Camp. Balloons and cupcakes are all you need to make a party. June took us to visit our dear friends in Albuquerque and what sweet memories were made there. August found us saying goodbye to my precious Daddy. As believers we have the sweet promise that the goodbye is only temporary. In September, Marvin and I took our annual anniversary trip to Gulf Shores. It is one of the favorite times of the year for me. We get to rest and just enjoy the sand, the sea and each other. November found us celebrating Thanksgiving with the Grimms....eating, laughing, picture taking and shopping fun on Bank Street.  December was a busy month for us...the birth of Elliott, going to Nashville to see the Rockettes, visiting Kendall and Landon's church to hear them sing in the program, Christmas in Chatworth and then Christmas here at home.

We have a few plans for 2014...a trip to Atlanta in March to see a Broadway show at the Fox, a week at the Beach with our kids and grands in July, Marvin's high school reunion dinner in Savannah and I hope to get tickets to take the Ben Grimm family on the Polar Express at Christmas.

Wishing each and every one of my blog friends a very Happy and Blessed 2014!