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Posts Tagged ‘Christmas’

The time has flown

December flew by for us here in the Loach household. I caught a cold/virus with a cough and sinus problems that took about four weeks to finally clear up. Because of this our early December activities and decorating were either curtailed or simplified.

At the last minute the week Rob got out of school we decided to make a quick trip to Ohio to visit with his mom in the nursing home. We had a couple of good visits while we were there. Our daughter, Megan, and her family from Michigan were able to drive down one evening and visit with Grandma and then we all were able to go out to supper together. Rob's sister Deb and her husband Dan also joined us.

Here is a picture of grandson Drew playing the guitar while the rest of the family sang carols:


On our way home I spotted a sign for a fabric store in Corbin, Kentucky that we had never checked out and Rob agreed to pull off. When we were nearing the shop we spotted a sign for the original Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant and museum. He went down and checked that out while I shopped for a few minutes. We both returned and found it to be a very interesting place to visit. The room where you pick up your food is very modern with the typical menu. The dining room is as it was in the 1940's and they have several display rooms showing what the kitchen and motel rooms were like. Did you know KFC was originally affiliated with a motor court?




We stopped for lunch at The Bush Bean headquarters in Dandridge, Tennessee. We really enjoyed our lunch and did a little shopping in the lovely gift shop. They also have a little museum but we didn't have time to tour it on this trip since we needed to be home in time to pick up our cats from their visit to the "spa" aka, the vet's.

After our travels we came home and had a couple of days to finish preparing for Christmas. Our son Mark and his family joined us for Christmas eve dinner and then the service at our church. This service is always a very special time with Scripture reading, carol singing, and it ends with the singing of the Halleluiah Chorus.

Our daughter Megan and her family arrived around supper time on Christmas Day. We had a pancake supper with them that evening and then later in the week had a more traditional Christmas dinner when the rest of the children and grandchildren could come.

One evening the girls wanted to have an appetizer-type meal. Our son-in-law, Topher's Mom and Dad and Aunt Lonie were here in town that evening so they came too. Topher's dad acted as our photographer and we were able to get an updated picture of the whole clan. It's hard to keep up to date with pictures. ๐Ÿ™‚


Since Our guests went home we have been cleaning, organizing, and putting away the Christmas decorations.

On New Year's Day we went out for brunch at the Hungry Drover and then drove out to see Campbell's Covered Bridge. It was built in the early 1900's but we had never before been to see it. It is a part of the local recreation department facilities and has a nice little picnic area. Do be advised that it has no restroom facilities.

Here is a picture of the breakfast we ate. We have learned we can easily share a Drover omelet.


Here is a picture of the covered bridge:


That catches you up on our recent activities. I do hope to post a few recipes soon. I discovered recently that there are still a few old favorites I have not written about. ๐Ÿ™‚

I hope you and your families all had a blessed Christmas and that 2016 will be a year of contentment and joy.

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A light in the window


For years we have put candles in our windows at Christmas time. For most of those years we used electric candles. We had to attach them to the windows with masking tape to help them stay in place. A couple of years ago we ordered some of these battery operated flickering candles from Lehman's store in Ohio and we have been very pleased with them. The name in their catalog is Cordless Window Candles. They have a little bar that fits into the window and holds the candles in place. They are light activated so they automatically switch themselves on and off. (They also have a manual switch.) Right now they are on sale for a great price so I thought I would mention it in case any of you readers might be interested. You can check out the details here (as long as the link is good). I am not being compensated for this, I just really like this product (and many others that they sell.)

We are keeping busy with family here visiting for a few days. Unfortunately one of our guests developed Influenza type A and had to go to the doctor this morning. Since taking Tamiflu and some other medications she is feeling somewhat better already. I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas.


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How I saved $141.50 with one purchase!


Like many other people we planned to do some Christmas decorating after Thanksgiving. We got out our artificial Christmas tree and attempted to set it up only to discover that the base was cracked and that the screws were stripped. Fortunately we had the original paperwork which came with the tree and Rob emailed the company asking if replacement parts were available. Unfortunately the company quickly wrote back and said that they would have loved to send us a free replacement part but that they were no longer available.

So, I've been looking around for trees at several stores this week. We thought if we were getting a new tree we would try to get a pre-lit tree this time. I found some which I really liked but they were already out of stock. I went to Walmart and saw a tree that I liked but discovered that the display model was the only one left and it cost $149.00. Near the display of trees I saw a stack of replacement tree stands which cost $7.50. I bought the replacement tree stand and we were very thankful to discover that it works with our tree! We're actually thinking of buying a spare to further prolong the life of this tree.


So far while Buddy and Ryan both have been very interested in the Christmas tree it is still standing firm. ๐Ÿ™‚


When I was a teenager we had a cat that actually climbed up our real Christmas tree. Another year we had a tree which had pine cones on it and as the tree warmed up the seeds from the pine cones would "pop" out of the tree and go flying across the room.

Would any of you care to share any Christmas tree stories?


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A Christmas project

We've been keeping busy at our house for the last few days doing ordinary things. The public schools were off for vacation for two days since they hadn't needed snow days this year and I took advantage of my days off to do some shopping and a bit of organizing. I cooked up most of the last of the fall apples stored out in the garage refrigerator and made about ten pints of applesauce for in the freezer. I've also had some ear and eye problems since my trip which have necessitated a few doctor visits.

While I was up in Michigan last month Rob was busy here at home painting Mark's old bedroom. We had picked out the color earlier but he surprised me by painting it while I was gone. He and Mark put up the bunk beds too. Over the weekend we hung the curtains and a little bunting I made for over the window. There are still several other projects we plan for in that room, but little by little they will be accomplished. Our goal is to implement some storage for craft materials, books and toys into the room as well as a place for the littles to sleep when they are here visiting. Here's a picture showing the new wall color and the black-out curtains (for promoting good napping conditions!) and the plaid bunting I made:

Shortly before Christmas I went to a nearby store where I often purchase thread and fabrics. Judy has a beautiful selection of fabrics and also offers some classes and does long-arm quilting. I was intrigued by a Christmas table topper on display. I purchased the pattern and the kit of fabrics to make it and promised myself that I would begin working on it after I finished the quilt for Maddie. The table topper was fun to make and I'm really happy with the way it turned out. I tried to be extremely careful in cutting it out since the yardage was from the kit and I knew it would be very hard to find more of the fabrics if I made a mess of it. They had some samples of the various steps of making the quilt and I took pictures of those to help me remember how to place the fabrics. It's all pieced and basted and just needs a few simple rows of machine stitching through all the layers and it will be ready for the dining room table next Christmas.

Here is the nearly completed table topper:

What kind of projects have you been working on lately?


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Christmas Projects

Rob and I were busy this fall making a few items for Christmas gifts.

I made several people these sets of kitchen towels and dishcloths:

picture of Towel Sets

I also made some Christmas themed insulated mats that can be used under casserole dishes:

picture of Christmas Mats

Rob knitted flower headbands for Nora and Megan:

He also knitted a couple of shawls that are going to be worn in a campus production of Fiddler on the Roof this spring. Here's one of them:

I made a jungle themed quilt for Ryan but unfortunately forgot to take a picture of the finished quilt. Here's a picture of the layout:

I made these little fleece sleep sacks for Ryan and the new baby girl:

I made another one of these wreaths from an old hymnal:

Jan, one of my faithful readers from Iowa sent me this delicious cookie recipe in a lovely Christmas card. I had some of the little Christmas cupcake liners which fit into the mini muffin tins and decided to use them even though I did make them after Christmas. These cookies are quite tasty and would also work for Valentine's Day or for a shower or tea.

Cherry Miniatures

1 3 oz. package cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup margarine or butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla (I used almond extract)
1 1/2 cup flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/3 cup maraschino cherries, drained and chopped
(plus more for decoration)
1/4 cup chopped pecans or walnuts (I used pecans) (almonds might be good too)

Glaze Ingredients:
3/4 cup powdered sugar, sifted
approximately 1 Tbsp. cherry juice

Cream softened cream cheese and butter with sugar until light and fluffy. Blend in eggs and vanilla. Add combined dry ingredients to creamed mixture. Stir in cherries and nuts. Place rounded teaspoons of dough in miniature muffin pans that have been greased or lined with miniature cupcake papers. Bake at 350 degrees for 12-15 mins. or until lightly browned. Remove from pans and allow to cool. Make glaze and spread cupcake tops with it. Decorate with cherries. Makes 3 to 4 dozen.

To make glaze:
Combine sifted powdered sugar with enough of the cherry juice to make a glaze.

Keep this in mind for your next event when you need a pretty, dainty little cookie.


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