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Saturday, December 30, 2006

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HAPPY NEW YEAR

To go along with my New Year post below.......



Be good to each other,

PEACE!
Love Jude

Friday, December 29, 2006



To all of you, I hope that 2007 brings you more joys than hurts, and more laughter than tears. May old friendships grow stronger and new friendships be made.

And may this world of ours gain more



Happy New Year everyone!

Love Jude

Tuesday, December 26, 2006




CHRISTMAS AT THE HIPPIE CHICK'S HOUSE

I hope you all had a great Christmas, stayed warm and had fun times. This is a longer post of about a 10 minute read including videos, so sit back with a good cup of coffee (or beverage of choice) and come on over for a Christmas visit to my home, and a Christmas walk around the neighbourhood. It was a nice couple of days and I thoroughly enjoyed the family times.

Christmas Eve: Always a quiet evening spent at home and it's a tradition that sister Pammie makes our favourite soup in the whole wide world........ Borscht!

Cooking in the pot:


Waiting for it to cook, I wandered around the house just enjoying some Christmas music:








Hubby's sister gave us a whole bunch of chocolates, which I put out in my crystal bowl:




Dinner, which we chose to eat in the living room:

I tell you, this is the BEST soup and Pammie makes it soooo good!


After dinner it's tradition that we sit around playing some games and having a drink. I bought a bottle of my favourite wine, and the only one I can still drink as it's lower in alcohol compared to most.

Arbour Mist, it's a white zinfandel called "Exotic Fruits". (I'm not touching that one, Xavier! hee hee)




This time, I won. Eat my dust Good job, Pammie!


And of course, "the girls" were keeping us company all evening. Misty and Lady (Bugs). My little angels!


Look at those faces! What's not to love? Haha Pammie would tell you that they both have me wrapped around their little paws.

And she's right.



But then, what are Aunties for? We're kinda like grandma's.


Christmas Day:



Christmas morning coffee, and opening gifts. That included the doggies, who got treats too.


Through the banister down at the front door landing:



Pretty.....


Sister Pammie made hubby and I calendars and bookmarks from her own photography, and although you can't really see them all that well believe me they turned out absolutely beautiful!




And after a light breakfast, we sauntered outside to walk off the lethargy we were feeling and take the doggies for a stroll around the immediate neighbourhood. The turkey stayed home in the oven cooking where it belonged.

(click to view video)


Signs of melting snow in the front yard:





My tree up there yonder......

Boy those windows are going to need a good outside cleaning come spring!


We enjoyed the sunny, balmy weather and took a few pictures along the way. These are the windrows I was blogging about before that the graders left on the sides of the side streets. (any major routes or bus routes have this hauled away)



With the melting we've had, the snow everywhere has a hardened "sheen" on it that is very pretty.






There were a few winter delights in the neighbourhood to capture on camera:






(click to view video)



Someone down the street used all the snow on their roof to build a snowman up there! Obviously it's too warm for such a creature to last up there in the sun, and its head rolled off at some point. The hat is still on the roof and what looks like the remains of its nose.






And my two personal favourite winter shots of the day:






Now, we're back home.... it was SO nice out that I was reluctant to go inside. But Christmas Dinner needed to be prepared.

(click to view video)


The table is set and it was about this point that my mouth was watering just from the turkey's aroma........ YUM!





The bird is about 2 hours away from being done.




After some more games and visiting, the Christmas dinner is ready to be devoured.




The aftermath. Even the salt & pepper snowman was decapitated for use.




After dinner, more games and jocularity. This time, I got my ass waxed in cribbage. That's me, the red pegs. I got SO skunked! You cheated deserved to win Pammie!




A good time was had by all.





Tomorrow is Boxing Day, and we're off to sister Brenda's for a visit. More family time and some gift exchange. I trust you're all having a restful day after the feasting!

I hope you enjoyed the visit here, I loved having you along. Take good care of each other and until next time.......

PEACE!
Love Jude

Sunday, December 24, 2006

MERRY CHRISTMAS!






To all of you, I wish you a warm and happy holiday season. Wherever you are, whether you are travelling or at home, be safe.



May all your Christmas wishes come true, and the New Year be everything you need it to be.


Thank you for the year round friendships. They are precious to me. Happy Holidays to you all!!

And of course, please take good care of each other.....

Love Jude

Thursday, December 21, 2006

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MISS ME??

Hahaha okay don't answer that!!

Huge sigh of relief, I'm finished all those extra days at work and I can get some much needed rest!

Remember how our city's side streets were so jampacked with loose snow everyone was getting stuck? Well the other day they finally decided to get the streets cleared. However....... after being driven over by traffic for so long, once they get the graders out to plow down to almost the bare pavement, what they're shoving up against the sidewalks is hard, icy and packed down so much it comes off in big chunks that nobody with just shovels can hardly move without getting a heart attack. People manage to clear away small spots to park a car in though. Our neighbours next door hired a bobcat to come do theirs, and put it all up in 2 piles on their lawn. At least now nobody's getting stuck on the street.

Last week:


Now:


Anywhere you see cleared spots against the sidewalks, someone had to do all that clearing. Hard work!!


So......... ready for Christmas yet?? It's only 4 days away, and I have to tell you it snuck right up on me this year for the very first time. Since the end of October it felt like I LIVED at my office, so I had no time or energy to think about Christmas coming. However last week on a day off I got everything done so I'm okay. Now I just have to clean my house as I've been too tired to do much of that for awhile.

On Tuesday night, myself and another girl from work delivered food hampers that our staff donated to, to 2 different families that need them. Both families have lots of kids and just can't afford Christmas dinner and breakfast, so that's what we gave them. I have to tell you it is the most amazing feeling to do this, and to see the looks of wonder and relief on their faces. When one wee little girl wanted to give us a hug, it did me in right there.

But for the grace of God go I....... I could be in their shoes. This puts things into perspective for me.

I took some shots of my Christmas tree in the dark the other night, I love sitting in there with the lights off and just the tree lit up. It actually lights up the room some and it's so pretty.



Usually by this time I've had a few Christmas get-togethers with a few friends, the ones who I exchange gifts with every year. But that hasn't happened yet, so hopefully next week. I hope I never ever have to work that much before Christmas again!

Not much to report, so I'll call this post toast. Once again, I'm linking one of my favourite Christmas tunes here, "Wizards of Winter" by the Trans Siberian Orchestra, enjoy!

Wizards of Winter

If I don't catch you again beforehand, have a great Christmas all, and stay warm and safe! Take good care of each other.......

PEACE!
Love Jude

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

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TOOLS OF THE CHRISTMAS TRADE

I always have my gifts finished and wrapped (or bagged) LONG before now, but with working so many extra days since the end of October, I am so exhausted that I woke up Monday morning with the realization hitting me that Christmas was 2 WEEKS AWAY!!

YIKES!!!!!!!!!!

So today being my first day of 3 off in a row this week (!!!Hallelueha!!!) I am taking the time today to begin making the gifts for the women in my life. And wrapping/bagging them and all the other stuff.

Last night I got out all my goodies to make Bath Salts, and got it all done before bed.

Paraphenalia et al:



Glass jars to hold the scented salts:



So, on to today.......

Firstly, I spent my entire morning and then some in the kitchen making glycerine soaps. I put on my Christmas C.D.'s in the dining room and as I began getting everything ready and melting the glycerine, I looked out the window...... and to put me in an even more Christmassy mood it had just started to snow. It only snowed for about a half hour or less though, as Alberta weather can be fickle and this same picture 30 minutes later would have shown a very sunny, pretty day out there. The birds were out there singing too. Sheesh.




Front view, kinda hard for you to see just how fat those snowflakes really were though...




Now here's all the soap making stuff, or some of it at least. Glycerine, scented oils, soap colorants, soap molds etc.




Okay........ so I'm melting the glycerine in my soap making apparatus on the stove. Two old pieces I picked up, one of my Mom's old pots and a decrepit coffee perk I got for a song at a flea market. This makes up my "double boiler".



Melting glycerine chunks:



Suffice it to say I'm not showing pics of the finished products as there are certain peepses who read this blog and will be recieving some of these gifts. *grin*

Maybe after Christmas I'll post 'em.

ANYHOO...... this is what my tree still looked like this morning.....




And then about 7 hours later. All done!! Gift bagged or wrapped!



And what am I doing tonight? I'm POOPED. So I've got my nightie on and I'm puttin my boots up for the night.


Well........... okay,


I'm puttin' my MOOSES up. Hee hee.





Have a great week all, and please take good care of each other.

PEACE!

Love Jude