the view from my kitchen window

Monday, January 30, 2012


My hubby has brought me many single roses over the years since we started courting and on our last anniversary on December 28, 2011, which was our 43rd,  he brought me another one.  Red.  Stunning. Gorgeous.
It was not fully opened and he put it in a bud vase on the counter by my laptop on December 27th.  Over the course of a few days it gradually opened up more and more displaying its glorious beauty.  You can see pictures of it then in a post further down titled "Anniversary Rose".
It's rare that the roses I've been given don't bend their head over and become "sad" looking, sometimes before they fully open.  This one didn't do that.  It stood there, tall, straight, and proud, just growing more and more beautiful each day.  I watched it every day as I could see it just above the screen on my laptop and I observed the process.
Then I noticed it starting to turn a deeper shade of red and in a slow, graceful process it kept turning color and the petals gradually drying until it was a deep, rich, burgundy red.  Still fully open and still tall, straight and proud.  I was just amazed at the transformation and decided to preserve it with spray finish and sealer and it now graces the decor of my bathroom.
This process has reminded me of the "graceful aging" of our marriage and how it has grown richer, deeper  . . . and tall, straight and proud.  We are still in love and we are still best friends!  God brought us together, gave us guidance over the years through the struggles, gave us two gorgeous children and has blessed us immensely with the "beauty of graceful aging".

Sunday, January 29, 2012

The story . . . according to BRAMBLE

Boy! It had been a rough day and I was feeling like I'd been pulled through a knothole backwards!!  But, even in my morphine induced stupor I recognized my mom's voice, hallelujah!  (My mom is CJ . .the barefoot farmgirl from southwest Colorado).  Whoa!  Slow down!  Just put one foot in front of the other . . . I'm so glad to see you mom!  Why are there two of you?  I only remember one.  Whew!! Home??  I'm going home??  Oh my goodness, home!!

My mom and I just love each other so much!!!

Home. Dad. Cat. Comfort. Security. Thank you Lord!   I was home and after a while the haze started to lift and I could actually see that I had only one mom . . the ONE I knew and loved!  I could walk straight and make my tail wag and I'm glad I'm home!  A little snack and a lot of love and the cozy warmth of home!

Jeremy comes to visit on Sunday, here we are having a conversation and I'm getting some lovin' from him!

Now, three days later I'm doing really good!  My mom puts an old sock over the dressing on my leg so that I can go outside for "business trips",  to walk about a bit, feel the breeze (brrrr!), feel the sunshine and sniff!  Boy, do I love sniffing things!!   I can do everything that I was doing EXCEPT go on my long power walks with my mom!  Man, oh man!  She has to leave me behind and I just hate it!  She told me she misses me sooooooo much, but when I'm healed up better I can go again.   I know what she's doing when she sneaks her sunglasses into her pocket and sneaks her walking shoes and jacket outside to put them on.  I KNOW!!!   I have to stay in the house and watch . . . wait . . . whimper . . . worry and do all of that all over again and again until she comes back.  Well, good grief, she's gone on 4-5 miles walks . . . that's a lot of watching, waiting, whimpering and worrying!!!  When she comes home I'm sooooooooo excited to see her, so relieved she's back and I let her know.  We have the best "love on each other" fest!  Then I have to keep an eye on her, so I watch her every move, follow her around the house, get worried if she heads for the door . . . mercy me!   Mom!!!!!

I have one of mom's old socks on my right front leg to protect my bandage and leg

And, then there's the medicine!  Well, I'm being a good girl and I take it.  Mom is pretty good at hiding it in food in such a manner that I don't have to actually taste it . . bleah!  I know I have to take it so I heal up good and can get back to my normal life.    Saturday morning I got to go to town with mom in the car . . that was easy.  I love looking out the window and then snoozing in the sun in the backseat while she's in the store.  But I got a special treat when she went through the drive-in window at the Silver Bean Coffee stop  . . . they give me doggie treats!  Wowie!  Zowie!   Yup . . I got one!

I'm doing good!!   Thank you, Lord!

Anyway, I'm doing good!  Have to take extra care and "lay low" until I see Amanda (my lady vet friend) on February 7th.  Then I get to say "HI" to all the girls there . .  (YIPPIE!!! I love the girls there!) and get the stitches out and this bandage off . . . ahhhh!  That will be SOOOOOO nice!!!

THANK YOU to all of you, my friends . . and my mom's . . for praying for me, for caring for me . . and my mom!   You are all so appreciated and so special!  I wish I could meet all of you and smile for you and wag my tail!  I'm very friendly, loveable and awfully cute!   And I like people, especially nice ones!!!  THANK YOU!!!   My mom says to tell you that too!!!!  We sure love you!!!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

A "Gumball" of BUTTONS!!

My goodness, I just have so much fun with buttons!   I have a collection that would make any button lover jealous, but I use them on my aprons and other sewing projects.  I use them to embellish my papercraft products which include journals, cards, tags and ATCs.  Some of the fancier ones or special ones from family collections, or even antique buttons I am pretty selfish with and keep around so that I can admire them.
I decided to put some of my colored buttons (only a small portion of my collection) in this "gumball" so that they could be enjoyed by more folks.  The "gumball" is another one of my projects and have made many of them for candy dishes, or whatever anyone wanted to put in them.  I've sold them, gifted them and have a couple I made for myself, this red one being one of those.  More fun for the love of buttons!!!!

Friday, January 27, 2012

You Light Up My Life

I'm always looking for creative projects that strike my fancy, aren't impossible or expensive to do and suit my style.   I'm putting together gear and accessories for "Glamping" . . . glamor/girl camping with my daughter and we'll be doing it in a tent and an EZ-Up canopy.  I've collected all kinds of linens, including lady curtains, sheets, doilies, tablecloths . . . much of it vintage.  Also a collection of throw rugs to throw down to make it even more comfy.

A single shade on a wineglass with a tealight is another fun thing. NOTE: the entire circle bottom of the cup will need to be cut out or the tealight won't stay lit and the cup bottom will melt.  The LED tealights could be used instead.

And, thought this project would be a fun, creative addition to our "glamp-site" (depending on it having electrical service).  So, I made this garland with a 20-light strand of  mini-lights, plastic solo cups, fabric and Mod Podge.    A very fun project and now I'm thinking about making one that is just a variety of polka dot prints and one that is just Western prints.

Light!  What a positive influence in my life!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Thank you Lord!!

Well, she made it through surgery with flying colors and is now home and we start the recovery process.   This photo taken not long after we got her back home and she's still under the influence of morphine. 
We sure missed her today!  It was just "not right" with her gone all day and our cat, Skye, was really out of sync as well, knowing "her dog" was missing.
She is doing good!  She will be fine!  I'm thankful for the Lord taking care of her . . . as I knew He would!!! 

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

"Certified Farmgirl" . . . awwwww!!

I add this picture of sweet Bramble in her brand new "Certified Farmgirl" bandana.   She really is a certified farmgirl too . . she takes care of our Longhorn cows, our llama, our cat, my hubby . . and me!!!  What a girl!!!!
She has surgery tomorrow . . . praying God's Hand on you my sweet friend!!!!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

BRAMBLE . . my sweet friend!

This is Bramble, my 8-year old female Australian Cattle dog.  She is my best pal, partner on my power walks, a sweet, affectionate friend.  She is fun, friendly and has been the best dog.  This week she has to have a tumorous growth removed from the back of her front right leg.  Her vet indicates there are no "scary cells" in the needle biopsy that was done, but the final determination of what this tumor is is yet to be determined by histology testing.  She is a precious pal . . . I'm praying for the surgery to go smooth, the tumor to be benign, for her recovery to be swift and without problems.  We still have lots of "playing" to do and power walks to take.  Her surgery is scheduled for Thursday, January 26, 2012.

Monday, January 16, 2012


We had some snow before Christmas, but it had melted off and the mud dried up by then and our Christmas was "brown".  We have had lovely, clear, sunny . . and dry . . . weather since then until early this morning.   Yesterday I did some laundry and hung it outside to dry.  We have an 8 foot "game" fence that runs across in front of house between the lawn and the fruit orchard and that fence makes an excellent clothesline.  The last load of the day included my handmade crocheted slippers which weren't dry when I brought in the rest of the laundry so I left them hanging there. I woke early to get ready for work, saw the snow coming down  . . . and this is what my slippers looked like.
No, they aren't going to keep my toes warm like this but we are so grateful for the Lord's provision of the snow . . . so very much needed!  The slippers will dry . .. eventually!

Three pair of crocheted slippers and one pair of socks! Cloudy and snowing!

Friday, January 13, 2012

"Mr. Teddy" and I are going GLAMPING!!

     What is "glamping" you ask?  Well  it is "girl" camping, it is "glamour" camping . . it is a combination of both.  Many glamping friends that I know have "glampers" which are typically camper trailers that they have made into their own little havens of camping  paradise.  They have been refurbished, restored, revamped and redecorated.  I don't have the privilege of owning my own "glamper" . . . yet.  But I know I can do it with a tent and a canopy.   So I've been collecting all sorts of lovelies for making our tent and canopy into a glamourous girl hangout!   The only "guy" who has been invited is "Mr. Teddy" and that's because he has been so faithful and diligent in keep watching over me.  He is an antique bear I rescued from the "Bargain Basement" section of an antique mall and he was so grateful to come live at my house.  He sits in my bedroom and keeps an eye on things.  So, he and my faithful doggie friend, Bramble, and I are meeting my daughter . . . who is my traveling companion, partner in crime and best friend . . . in March near her home in Phoenix, Arizona for some tent-glamping time!!!   Gonna pack these suitcases with my stuff, load up my car and head that way. 
     I'm SOOOOOO thankful for my daughter and the relationship we have and I'm looking forward to this time with her!!! 

Monday, January 9, 2012


Bill and I were both sophomores at Arizona Bible College in Phoenix, Arizona.  I had transferred there that year from another college, so it was new to me.  Our first date was to the Arizona State Fair in the Fall of 1967.  Neither of us had a car and we started going on our dates on Bill's roommate's Honda 90 motorbike.  So, we buzzed around on that . . I came back to the dorm with windblown beehive hair . . you have to remember that highly teased and sprayed hair was the "thing" in those days.  Bill also let me wear his uncle's Army jacket, so you can imagine the sight I was.  

By Christmas we knew we loved each other and wanted to get married.  We went shopping for an engagement ring and submitted our request to announce our engagement to the administration of the college.  Yes, it was required and they had to know our parents had been informed and were in consent. We were both still under the age of 21.   We officially announced our engagement at the college Sweetheart Banquet in February 1968. 

We were married on December 28, 1968 in my home church, First Baptist Church in Cortez, Colorado.  We had to drive through an absolute blizzard from Phoenix to my home here in southwest Colorado and, what was normally an 8 hour drive took 14 hours!  All of my siblings, their spouses and children were present, as were Bill's family members from Arizona.  My oldest sister made my dress and the dresses for my bridesmaid.  I wore white velvet trimmed with rabbit's fur, they wore hunter green velveteen.  Flowers were red roses, white mums and baby's breath.  We had a very short honeymoon in Flagstaff and were back to school and jobs soon thereafter.

Our daughter, Robin, was born in October 1971 and our son, Jeremy was born in December 1973, both in Phoenix, Arizona.  We lived there until the spring of 1974, moved to Tucson (where Bill's parents lived) until the summer of 1976 and then moved back to Colorado where we have lived since.

Like any marriage we've had our struggles, difficulties and hard times, but we made a commitment and, because we believe our marriage was ordained by God, we worked to let Him be in control. So, here we are, starting on our 44th year together . . . we love each other in a way we didn't know could or would be.  We've learned a tremendous amount about each other which includes that we are individuals who contribute to the marriage relationship.  Most importantly, God is the center of our lives and our marriage . . . and we know how to let go of stuff that doesn't matter and laugh a lot!
Thank you, Lord, for Bill and for our children . . and for giving us this marriage!

 Bill bought me a single red ros which, on 01/09/12, is still standing tall, elegant and beautiful
This was one of the most fragrant roses I've ever been given.  Can you smell it?

Thank you, Bill, for this gorgeous rose!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Birthdays, Anniversaries, and other Celebrations

December is a very busy month for this family with all kinds of celebrations.  While my parents, Gaylord and Evelyn Gardner, are now in heaven I still remember their anniversary which is December 7th. They were married in 1933 in Belen, New Mexico, my dad would have just turned 20 and my mom still 19.

December 12th is our son, Jeremy's, birthday and this year he turned 38.  He was born a bit before his estimated due date but that had nothing to do with him being born with Down Syndrome.  He has been a true gift to this family!!!

December 17th is my birthday and since it was on a Saturday this year and I had opportunity to do so, I just took myself and my little canine friend, Bramble, and went putzing and poking around.  Stopped in my favorite shops, had lunch at "The Farm Bistro", took a couple walks in the park (weather unseasonably warm). Then picked Bill up and we had a yummy pizza at Dolores River Brewery . . and shared a lovely dessert made by Angie.

December 19th is my in-laws wedding anniversary. My father-in-law, Sam, is in heaven, having gone home in August of 2007.  My mother-in-law, Caroline is living and well in an assisted living home in Tucson, Arizona.  I still think of them and their years together . . . and we miss Sam a lot!

Of course, DECEMBER 25th is Christmas and the reminder of the birth of our LORD and SAVIOR!!! What a birthday to remember and celebrate.!!!!  HALLELUJAH, WHAT A SAVIOR!!

December 28th is our (Bill and me) wedding anniversary.  This year we celebrated 43 years.  Our daughter, Robin was home and I got up and made a yummy, more-elaborate-than-usual breakfast for everyone.  Robin cooked us a yummy and fun "Diner Dinner" that evening.  I'm thankful for Bill!!

December 31st is our daughter and son-in-law's, Robin and Jim, wedding anniversary.  They celebrated 7 years.  Robin was driving back home on the day while Jim was at home in Glendale . . . well, actually he was doing a 20 mile training run for a marathon.  So, I believe it was dinner together after Robin got home and Jim was back too.

So, December is past, 2011 is also past and we start a new month and a new year, 2012.  I know that the Lord has many more opportunities in store for us in this new year!!!!

Jeremy and Robin . . . our beautiful children, who are now adults

Our "Birthday Girls" Birthday Lunch.  Robin (her birthday was October 9th) me, our friend and neighbor, Lynne Beck (her birthday is December 27th) and another farmgirl friend, Sharon Demers (her birthday is also December 17th)  We got together to celebrate on Thursday, December 29th at Fiesta Mexicana in Cortez

Well, ya' gotta be able to goof around once in a while!

Bill and me . . . 43 years married!

And, then we added our doggie friend, Bramble . . . she's such a sweetie

Robin and I are both "alumni" of Montezuma-Cortez High School in Cortez.  We both attended all 4 years there, I graduated in 1966, she graduated in 1990.   We found these t-shirts this past week and decided we needed them.  I then found my "M" letter from when I was in high school.  It's for students in the music program and it has all four bars on it.  It actually survived our fire in 1994 . . . was filthy dirty with soot (carefully cleaned it) and the upper right corner of the "M" shows some evidence of burn.  Robin thinks I need to frame it in a shadow box . . . I probably will.