Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Homemaking Notebook

Remember I mentioned I was making a home-making notebook? Well, I made it back in November and thought I would use it for a bit before I did a post on it. I read about these on and used many of her print outs and suggestions. If you like what you see with mine, surely go check out that web-site. She has many suggestions and pictures, free print-outs, etc. to get you started.
This is the cover of my notebook. I used a regular 3-ring binder with a plastic insert on the cover so I could slide a piece of pretty scrapbook paper with a printout glued to the front. I thought it was kind of cute.
Now let's take a peek inside...

I put my most used subjects first as I refer to them several times a day. My first one is Menus and Shopping Lists. I used scrapbook paper with a pretty picture glued and inserted into a plastic 3-ring page protector for the first page. To get some pretty pictures to use, I went to and clicked on images. Then I put in victorian pictures, or victorian cleaning... you get the idea.

Here is a print out from for menus. This keeps me well organized and I know what I'm having for meals and snacks at a glance. It's also a great way to make out my shopping list, which is in here, too.

Here we have Accounts. That pic shows an uptight Victorian woman tallying up her spending. Goodness, I hope I don't look like that! That pic always makes me smile... I use this subject nearly every day.

Here I keep track of all spending. Not bill paying, as I have another system for that, (I can post about that, too, if anyone's interested) but about everyday spending. Gas, groceries, coffee stops, you know, the day-to-day nickle and dime spending that you don't even think about. Trust me, once you keep a tab of every penny that goes out, it gives you a whole new perspective on where your money goes. This a THE BEST tool you can use to get started on living more frugally. My goal is to have our home paid off in the next several years. We built a beautiful home ten years ago and when the taxes skyrocketed in that town, we decided to move to a more tax-friendly (just over the border), and keep track of our spending so that we could, in the forseeable future, be compelely debt-free. Hence, the frugality and tally-watching.
I did have some other pictures to show, but they came out quite blurry and not worth showing. But I think you get the idea. Below is a list of my subjects. Think of some of your own areas and insert those.
I have:
Menus and Shopping Lists
Everyday Recipes - which houses bread, yogurt, stuff that I make over and over again
Daily Schedule/To-Do
House Cleaning & Home-made Cleaning Recipes - this section also includes a seasonal cleaning checklist
Current Crafts - came in very handy over the Christmas gift-making
Booklists - for both me and my children. Books I/we want to read, crossed-off when accomplished, and books I want to buy or borrow from the library
Pantry-Freezer Stockpile Inventory
Phone Book - Our personal white and yellow pages
Gardening - My gardening plans and useful articles from the web
Price List - helps me keep track of food prices and where to buy them cheapest
Also lets me know if I'm really getting a buy or not
Prayer List - don't want to forget anyone! Great to keep track of Bible reading, too.
Calendar - will put this into use once the calendar I'm using is finished in August. This will save me some money as the one I use now is truly beautiful, but I need to cut back where I can, and this is one place I can.
Chore Charts - This way I KNOW who's responsible for what zone! No pulling the rug over my eyes, anymore!
Holiday Planner - Wonderful tool to keep track of birthday's and if I send a card or make/buy a gift, it's all in here to help me plan.
Frugality - any tips I don't know of or can/want to try I put in here.
Natural Health - Again, any helpful information I can use, I put in here... like putting Vicks or garlic on the bottom of feet to help stop coughing. I didn't know that, but I do now and when someone is sick, I know I have the info in here.
My notebook is still in the tweaking stage, but I like it a lot and use it daily. It takes a few hours to put it together, but I have found it to be well worth the time.
Over the next few days, I will post some projects I hope to accomplish in 2009. Many are household cleaning projects and of course, craft stuff, too.

Just had to include this beautiful flower that came into bloom the other day. My dad always buys me something special before Christmas. It may be a poinsettia plant, a fiber-optic Christmas tree or, like this year, a bulb that blooms right around Christmas. Since I took this pic, it now has three blooms. Just beautiful. My dad and I have a special bond, and this little treat each year lets me know I'm still his little girl...

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Silent Night, Holy Night

Silent Night, Holy Night
All is calm, All is bright
Round yon Virgin Mother and Child
Holy Infant so tender and mild
Sleep in heavenly peace
Sleep in heavenly peace

Silent night, Holy night,
Shepherds quake at the sight
Glories stream from heaven afar
Heavenly hosts sing Alleluia!
Christ, the Saviour is born
Christ, the Saviour is born

Silent night, holy night
Son of God, love's pure light
Radiant beams from Thy holy face
With the dawn of redeeming grace
Jesus, Lord, at Thy birth
Jesus, Lord, at Thy birth

Merry Christmas, My Blogging Buddies...
May you and your family know and embrace the true meaning of Christmas!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Not Quite As Far As I'd Like...

to be, but hey, I gave it my best shot. One of Kaleigh's Christmas gifts is almost done, but not quite. It's a hat and mitten set and I still have one more mitten on the needle. She's a bit older than the other three girls so I know she'll understand. But I'm gonna finish it, I promise! The yarn is so soft and pretty; a tweed by Valley Yarns called Williamstown. It's a WEBS yarn. Since I live only about 45 minutes from the store (lucky me!) I'm quite partial to their Valley Yarns, as they're named after many surrounding towns! The hat is knit from a free pattern I got on the net called Women's Lace Edged Hat. If you google it in, you'll find the pattern. I can assure you the picture doesn't do the hat justice. It works up adorable!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Hot Cross Buns!

It's nearly Christmas and it's time to deliver a few little gifts to my neighbors. I did the cookie swap last week, remember? I thought I would make up some of those cookies and some of the ones me and Kaleigh made and give those. Afterall, that's what I've done for years. But this year I didn't make as many as usual so here I am, giftless. So what did I do? I made up two Christmas candies, a fudge and White Chocolate Peppermint Bark and gave that to one neighbor and some of my husband's co-workers. But I didn't have enough for two other neighbors. So this morning I made a dozen Hot Cross Buns. Oh, I can't tell you how delicious they taste, and my kitchen smells like a bakery! I made a couple little changes as I don't use an automatic bread machine, so I switched up the order a bit, and instead of raisins, I added the Christmas candied fruit. YUM! Here's where I found the recipe: Just put in Hot Cross Buns! They are submitted by: LITSTER5
Give them a go... you'll be really pleased.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Wintertime Fun!

Our first REAL snowstorm is hitting pretty good with a foot of snow predicted. The kiddoes are all excited and they fired up the 'ol snowmobile for some wintertime fun!

I know you can't see her too good, but Kierra is nestled in front of Casey going for a ride. Weeeeeeeee!!!
If you click on the picture, you'll see a mass of blonde hair and a blob of hot pink. Yea... that's Kierra.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Caressa's Hat & Mittens

Just finished this one at the dentist's office. Do you think Caressa will like it?

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

A Busy Sunday

Some days are busier than others, and this past Sunday was one of those days. Our meat chickens were ready to be slaughtered so my husband spent the day up to his elbows in chicken guts... literally. You probably can't see it too good, but on the left side of my clothesline is a chicken dangling upside down. He was pretty cold when he finally came in. While he was busy doing that, me and the girls were busy doing this...

baking Christmas cookies!

So far we've made: Snowflakes, gingerbread girls, thumbprints, white chocolate frosted Italian cookies, and peppermint fudge (the horrible fuzzy pic) that is really yummy.

We'll make a few more kinds of cookies and candy over the next few days. As if my kitchen wasn't messy enough, we also had to make...

this pretty birthday cake for my hubbie. It was a white cake with a lemon filling and very light white, coconut frosting. It tasted really good. In between the baking, I had to do a quick clean-up as we had a little family party for him in the evening. We were all pretty tired at the end of the day.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Feast of the Immaculate Conception

The Feast of the Immaculate Conception is a holy day that Catholics celebrate on December 8. It is the day of the conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary without original sin. She was instead filled with divine grace.
We began our day this morning with celebrating the Mass. When we came home, I looked at a plant that my husband brought in just before the first frost and noticed a beautiful flower that came into bloom today!
Ave, Maria!

Wee Wonderful Kitties, Bags & More

Little kitties I made for my little girlies using the Wee Wonderful Pattern, Kitty, Bunny and Bear. These were really fun to make and I could see I could get carried away in doing the whole matching thing...

Three bags to carry the little guys around in. What I didn't take a pic of was three blankets I made for girls to wrap the kitties in when they're asleep...

And three matching dresses...

that are reversible, too!
Time to go wrap these giftees up!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Mens Fingerless Mitts

I've been away from the computer for the past few days as I had a mishap... I was rotary-cutting some material the other day and got over zealous and ran over my left index finger. Major OUCH! I can't believe how much I NEED that finger! I mean, I know I need it, but wow, I REALLY need it! So, I've taken a few days off and nursed my finger and today it's feeling pretty good. At least I can type and bend it without excruciating pain and more bleeding.
I finished these fingerless mitts for my husband's birthday which is the 13th. I've tried really, really hard this year to stay in my budget for Christams and two birthdays and by golly, I'm doing it. Lots of work for me, but I love to hand make things, so it's O.K. I'm hoping that the mitts and special dinner of lobster (yuck for me, but he likes it) steak, and corn-on-the-cob, and home-made cake will be a nice gift for him. I'm thinking the mitts will be good for driving, yes?
I used the free pattern from here: I used a worsted weight yarn in Navy by Cascade Yarns. If I have time and my finger cooperates, I hope to make another pair for my dad's birthday on the 21st.
I have several other gifts to post in the next few days, so check back!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

A Sleepy Trio & Hat & Mitten Set

Is this a tired bunch or what? Big Brother, Corey, and two of his favorite little sisters, Kierra and Caressa, sneaking in some cuddle time.

A hat and mitten set all set for wrapping for Cassidy. I used the same basic pattern as the previous hat but without the ear flaps and ties. The blue, textured yarn is a beautiful hand-dyed, handspun creation gifted to me from my friend in CA. The mitten pattern is the same as the mittens I made for Kierra. I'm making good progress at Christmas gifts but have several more to go...

Thursday, November 27, 2008

What I'm Thankful For...

My hubbie and kiddoes! Hope you all had a nice Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Bumble Bee Bagz Shop Open!

My blogging buddie, Christina, has just opened her new shop of beautiful hand-made bags. She had a give-away recently and guess who WON! That's right, yours truly! The hardest part was to decide which bag with matching wallet and key fob I wanted. Decisions, decisions. Hop on over and take a peek at her creativeness! Click my side bar at Bumble Bee Bagz, grab a cup of coffee/tea and enjoy her new shop!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

A New Coat for Caressa

I thought a new coat for Caressa was in order so my last trip to Joann's my arms were cuddling some nice soft fleece and flannel. Seeing that the coat only uses two pieces I thought it would be a piece of cake. Well, it was fairly easy, but a bit confusing with the turning and layout. But it's O.K., as the jacket looks real cute on her and it came out really good. I still have to sew the bunny buttons on tonight as I watch Mrs. Minniver! The pattern can be bought at It's called the Wonder Jacket.

And the model herself. She said, "Mommy did you make me a jacket because you love me?" I said, "Yup, but if I didn't know how to sew you'd just have to be happy with all the kisses instead". Then I got rewarded with lots of giggles.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Gifts, Soap Recipe & Meter Reading Results!

Gee, here in the photo, the hat looks kind of weird, but in person it doesn't, honest! The blue triangle you see is one of the ear flaps. It has one on the other side, too, just can't see it. You probably already knew that though :)
I've been busy knitting and making Christmas gifts for awhile now. Above is a hat and mittens I made for Kierra. I got her a light blue jacket this year for Christmas, too, and I thought this would look cute with it. The pattern for the hat is Morning Glories by Woodsmoke Woolworks. I changed it up just a bit as when I started it there were too many color carry-overs for me. The yarn kept tangling and it got me irritated (which is NOT a good thing!) so I undid it and did only two colors for the patchwork. I'm happy with the way it came out and plan on making two more hats using the same basic pattern but switching it up a bit. The flowers on it are just adorable!
The mittens are from a free pattern I got on-line. You can find them here: A very basic, easy mitten pattern and they came out nice, too.

I made each of my nephews, 26 and 21 a set of three washcloths and home-made soap.
I made two different kinds: lavendar and rose. I used crushed lavendar from my friend's garden, and crushed roses from my garden. I also used essential oils to scent them. They are wonderful. I used Lionbrand Organic Cotton for the washcloths and they are unbelievably soft. I think they'll like them.

We have been using the same soap recipe now for hmmm... about 10 years. Wow, where does time go? Anyway, you can make it with or without molds. I just bought these molds but for the past ten years have been using a wooden box my hubby made and then I usually just cut the bars.

Soap Recipe - Two Pound Batch
9.6 oz. coconut oil
9.6 oz. olive oil (or vegetable oil)
15.2 oz. palm oil (or Crisco)
12.8 oz. water
4.8 oz. red devil lye (this is only pure lye)
Optional: 3 oz. of butter (shea, mango, cocoa)
2 oz. of grain such as blenderized oatmeal or 1 oz. clay)
2 - 3 oz. of fragrance or essential oil
Mix oils (not essential oil) into a pan (stainless steel to be used for soap only) and heat slowly 'til just melted. Remove from heat. Put water in a glass Mason jar and add lye to the jar. DO IN THIS ORDER! MUST BE DONE OUTSIDE IN A WELL-VENTED AREA! Mix with a metal or stainless steel spoon. It will heat up on its own. Wait until it cools until it reaches 110 degrees (about a half hour). At this point the oil should be about the same temperature. Use a hand-held stick mixer and blend the lye solution into the oils and keep mixing. Once it starts to gel up a bit, then add in your essential oils. Mixture should be thickend up and pour into mold and leave for three days. Then remove from molds and let dry out. Cut if necessary. Let soap dry for about three weeks.
Lye is very hard to get now. You can purchase it on-line from Bramble Berry, but be forewarned.. you pay twice the amount for shipping as for the product!

Meter Reading Results
Well, this was interesting (and still is) as I plan on continueing this little adventure for a while. We spend about $5.00, more or less, a day on electricity. I'm trying to lower that. We did lower it a bit yesterday as I walked around half the day turning off lights. I also unplugged a few things, like the iron, treadmill and sewing machine. I only use those items once a day, so I guess it won't kill me to plug and unplug them. I'm also hanging my laundry down the cellar instead of outside as the weather is just too cold for the laundry to dry out there. I still don't mind, though, as I find that hanging laundry is very relaxing to me. It kind of reminds me of when I was little... my mom always hung out her laundry (and still does) and I used to hand her the clothes. When I got older I would hang and take down the clothes too, as even then, I enjoyed the task. So, I'll keep trying to find ways to cut my electric bill. If you have any suggestions, please leave them in the comments section as I will give nearly anything a try at least once!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Read the Meter

Rhonda, over at Down---to---Earth blog (see sidebar) has a challenge going to lower our usage and utility costs. I've decided to join her in an effort to lower our electricity usage and costs. If you pay for water, then you can do that, too. We have a well, so we won't be doing that portion. Anyway... we've read the meter for three mornings in a row and average about 40kwh, which comes to about $4.90/day. Now we are going to try to conserve. (Hear that, kiddoes, CONSERVE! which means to TURN OFF THE LIGHTS and SHUT DOWN THE COMPUTERS!) For some reason, my kiddoes, and yes, all of them, seem to know how to turn on the lights, but by golly, no one knows how to turn them off! And computers, YIKES! we've got four going all day and night. Three of us shut ours down before bed, but Kyle... leaves his on all the time even when he's gone for his 12 hour shifts! Anyway, we're going to conserve over here at Berkshire Cottage. I'll keep you posted as to how it goes. If you decide to join in, visit Rhonda's wonderful blog and leave her a comment. She'll be happy you joined!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

He Always Did Like Things That Fly in the Sky...

and he still does. A pic of my son, Kyle, doing some clinical time on Life Star. He's on the roof of Yale New Haven Hospital after a patient transport.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

A Day at the Park & a Bunting, Too!

Lots of play going on here today. First the park, then the sewing machine!

Ta-Daaaa... it's finished. A cute-as-can-be bunting for my friend's soon-to-be-born grandson. Ultrasounds are great for craftiness, aren't they? Can you guess what team his mom and dad are fans of?

Kierra was doing some climbing before she knew I had a camera in my hand!

Caressa having some slide-time fun!

Cassidy and Kaleigh on the see-saw. What happened to the real see-saws where half the fun was jumping off so your partner hit the pavement REALLY hard? Remember how funny that was, as long as you weren't the one hitting the pavement?


O.K., sometimes I like to play at the park, too! Just need to remember to watch my head in those tight spots, ya know?

Monday, November 10, 2008

Convertible Mittens

You can't see it too closely but this is a shot of the front and back of the mitten. If you click the pic to enlarge, then maybe you can see the ribbing on the right one (underside) and how the other mitten (top)is like a regular mitten.

Convertible Mittens... have you ever seen these? They're quite ingenious. At least I thought so until I showed them to my hubby and he said, "oh, yea, hunting gloves". Huh? Hmm... just coincidence. Then as I was showing them to my mom, my dad peered over and said, "oh, those are like hunting gloves". So, I guess they're like hunting gloves. O.K., maybe in design, but these are much cuter. And softer.
I made these for a Christmas gift out of Three Irish Girls hand-painted yarn. Everyone raved about this yarn and I got in on a co-op buy for it. It took several months to get it but, yup, it's worth the wait and the $$$. Very nice yarn! The pattern I got free from the net at The real name is called Women's Open Palm Mittens. Wonderful pattern, very well written and easy to understand. And the price... free... can't beat that!

Friday, November 7, 2008

I'm Still Here...Kinda

Caressa found great joy in running in circles, laughing all the while...

I'm still here, although haven't posted lately. I've been busy with the kiddoes schoolwork, house projects, an organization routine and Christmas gifts. I am making some headway, although a lot still needs to get done. Just the dialy day-to-day work is at times, overwhelming.
At any rate, we've had a rainy, balmy week and the kids are still recuperating from their cold virus. It's been a long three weeks! It literally went through the house, except for me, Gary and Kyle.
As you can see, the littlies are tired of being stuck inside and have decided to rake up some wet leaves. I hope some sunshine comes our way soon. I need a day of sunshine, myself!
I have a crockpot full of baked beans that I started last night. Oh, they are goood! I'll make some fresh bread this afternoon and yogurt, too. It seems I'm running low on the necessities.
I've been working on a Household Binder that should help with my home running just a bit more smoothly. I'll share that project with you very soon... maybe tomorrow.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Easy Fleece Blankets

Count 'em; five blankets! One afternoon I was beginning to panic as I have a list of Christmas gifts I want to make and time is slipping by too quickly. I looked at the pile of fleece sitting in the corner of my room and thought I'd better get going. So I did one of the pink blankets myself, then Kaleigh asked if I wanted some help. Are you kidding? Of course I wanted help~! We finished the second pink blanket just before it was time to get supper going. After we finished dinner and clean-up we headed back to my room. No time for a walk that evening. We did the next three blankets in between a consultation, picking up Casey from work, and baths for the littlies. We finished about 10:30, but hey, they're done and ready to be wrapped. I did a few of those blankets two years ago and the receivers really liked them as they're soft and warm. So between the ones I did then and the ones this year, all my kiddoes will have their own 'blankee' to cuddle with while reading a good book or watching a good movie.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Amidst Snowflakes and Sunshine

The first snow fell today, admist sunshine, clouds and more snow. The day couldn't be more bewildering. It's chilly, yet not so cold that I need the fire burning. The kiddoes and I did some schoolwork, then settled in for a lunch of crackers and peanutbutter, chocolate dipped pretzels, and cinnamon toast. The best part of our lunch, besides the company I was keeping, was home-made hot chocolate topped with fresh whipped cream. We gathered around the coffee table in the living room with a tea-pot filled with the warm chocolate. To enjoy my children like this is truly a gift... They bring joy to me always. As the enjoyment of summer is behind us, and the anticipation fall brings of the beginning of another school year wears on, this little glimpse of winter days looks just right to me: warm, cozy, and filled with the smiling faces of my beautiful children. C'mon in winter...I'm ready!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Kitchen Talk

I wanted to try to freeze pumpkins this year as I've never done it before and have heard how yummy they are. Last week I found pumpkins at a local farm and bought 13 at .75 cents each. Seemed like a good deal. So the other night I employed my husband (read heavily coaxed) to help me do the pumpkins. All truth be told, I had a consultion and left my hubby high and dry for a little over an hour and he got stuck with the brunt of the work. Well, here's what "we" did:
washed and dried the pumpkins. You can see that in the photo.
Cut pumpkins in half and scooped out the center yucky stuff (saved the seeds).
Cut the pumpkins in large pieces.
Cooked the pumpkins on the stove in a veggie basket for about 25 minutes. Here's where it took a looooong time. We had to do it over and over again. Really, a pressure cooker would have been much faster and we will do it that way next year. I hate to say, "I told ya so", but I did tell the 'boss' and he didn't listen! So it was a long night...
Next, we put them in the mixer and gave it a few whirls and packed the finished pumpkin into quart jars. I didn't even take a photo as it was nearly midnight and my hubby already put them in the freezer. At this point, I was VERY hesitant to ask him to bring them back for a pic. No... that wouldn't have been a good idea...

Here's a pic of a few of my favorite kitchen helpers: my mixer, grain mill, and yogurt maker. The two latter are pretty new but I've used them both quite a bit. I love being able to grind my own fresh flour, and I really like the yogurt maker. The yogurt is delicious and so much cheaper. It will pay for itself very soon.
Can you see the pretty Singer sewing machine table? I bought that at a tag sale a few weeks ago and it houses these things perfectly and it looks pretty, too. The tatted cloth underneath was worked by my grandma, whom I miss very much; but she's still with me everyday as I look and admire her handiwork scattered around my home.

Here is an old juice maker that my parents used when I was a kid. I don't know why they didn't want it anymore, but I was happy to take it. I've been making cordial out of it lately and we all have been enjoying it very much. I got the recipe from the Down to Earth blogspot (see side-bar) but I think it's O.K. if I share it here.
You take fresh lemons or limes, wash and cut in half. (I use 5, 6, 7, whatever is on the 'rack of shame'. (I'll explain that in a minute) Juice. On stovetop, make a syrup of one part water and one part sugar. I did 2 cups water and 2 cups sugar. Add the sugar at boiling and stir to dissolve. Remove from heat. Add in juice. I put my cordial in a mason canning jar. When ready to use, use 1/4 cordial to 4 parts water and pour over ice. This is just delicious! And frugal!
The rack of shame is what my kids have nick-named the produce rack in the back of the produce department. You know, where the 'old' stuff is... the reduced produce. That's where I buy apples for pies, bananas for the freezer for smoothies, and the lemons and limes. Now the 'shelf of shame' is where I sometimes buy donuts or rolls or other goodies that I normally wouldn't buy. That's located at the end of one of the aisles in the store on a shelf with reduced bakery items; hence the name 'shelf of shame'. We all laugh about it, but I'm having the last laugh, as now that my 16 year old son, Casey, is working part time at Stop & Shop, he sometimes visits the 'shelf' to buy himself and his sisters treats on pay day!

Here is the finished products of the yogurt (half gone) and the cordial.

Just had to share our afternoon picnic with you. The weather is just delightful with a brilliant blue sky, sunshine and crisp temperatures, but nice and warm in the sun. We set out a blanket and enjoyed hot tea, crackers and cheese for lunch. Ahhh... savoring the last bit of nice weather before winter sets in!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

A Few Christmas Gifts Done

I get so stressed thinking about how much I'd like to make for Christmas gifts. I really would love to do so much more than time allows, but of course, you can only do what you can. This year, a few special people on my gift-giving list will receive one of these totes. Each have a linen bottom and cotton top. I used high-quality material and the finished product shows that. The pattern is from Simple Sewing by Lotta Jansdotter. I really love that book. The directions are clear and simple and whatever I've made from the book comes out just beautifully. You may remember from a previous post I already made one of these for my friend's birthday and it has been shipped to CA. Her birthday is on the 27th and I asked her not to open the package until then. I sure hope the receivers of these totes like them and use them.

This one is a gift but...

not this one. I originally bought this 1/2 yd cut from Australia and it was supposed to be a small wall quilt. Instead I decided to make myself a tote instead. That little spot on there is just water from the iron. That should dry up by the time I'm done with this post. Yup, I'm gonna keep this one. But the next one is....

going to go to a new home.
On to more Christmas gift-making!