Monday, December 30, 2013

maine ice storm 2013 followup

well, its been over a week now since the ice storm and the ice is still with us.  today the sun finally came out for more than a few minutes.  the wind kicked up and the ice laden tree branches swaying in the wind sounded like leaves rustling.  some ice was falling, but not much.

the old farmers almanac had predicted a colder and snowier winter for northern new england.  so far, so good.  frigid temps again for the next few days.  this is the 3rd frigid cold snap in the last month.


we had a quick snowstorm drop 6-7 inches of snow last night.  this morning was all pretty and rosey looking



Sunday, December 29, 2013

maine ice storm 2013

 we had a pretty bad ice storm around these parts that started on saturday december 21st and ended late on monday december 23rd.  many people lost their power on saturday, but ours didn't go out until monday morning.  right after i had gotten up, but right before i made my coffee :((
this first pic is how it looked out my back door on saturday morning.
jeff and i spent the weekend just keeping up with stuff and hanging out while the lights blinked occassionally.  sunday the power went off and on a couple of times but not for longer than an hour.  monday morning i got up at 6:30 and turned on the coffee pot, but before my coffee could brew the power went out and we knew that was it.  the ice was getting thicker and thicker.
we had the woodstove going and lots of bottled water and food we didn't have to cook, so we were good.  when darkness started to fall we got out all of our candle lanterns and some flashlights and spent the evening just chilling out--mostly with jeff playing his guitar--and talking--and drinking a little whisky--maple flavored jim beam--yum!!!
when we got up on tuesday morning it was all done and then we had to work to get out of the driveway.  we went to our daughters house--she had power.  one sons home also kept power but the other didn't--his was actually out for 3 days.



we had to cut down a whole bunch of young birches and wild cherries that bent over and blocked the driveway.  a couple of them were touching the phone line, but it held up.  a couple of branches were overhanging the power line, but the power company came and trimmed them back.
the roads were all good down to julies (14 miles of back road) we had to drive around many drooping trees, but none that totally blocked the road. 
funny picture of jeff conquering the elements!
i took my christmas morning food to julies to prepare and we planned on going to the sons house with power on christmas morning.  we also took showers there.  then we stopped at the grocery to stock up on snackies and then to mcd's for our christmas eve dinner.  we were on our own for christmas eve and i don't even know if there was church services.  at that point we were too tired to care much.
when we got back home the sun was shining and the ice was beautiful.  pictures cannot do it justice
the temps were very cold that night--near 0*  i put on my down coat and went outside to look at the stars.  it is very, very dark here anyway because of no street lights and very few houses, but with no lights from any houses at all it was  actually very nice!
we brought in more wood and packed all the dirty dishes into a tote to put in the garage until the power went back on because they were just bugging me sitting there.  got all the candles lit and settled down with our snacks.  around 7 pm the power went on!  i hardly noticed it because everything was turned off so i just heard the soft hum of the fridge going on.  i jumped up and ran around and turned every light on!!!! 
then the power went back off!!!!! 
it came back on for good (so far) about an hour later.
it was kind of a happy/sad kind of feeling though. 
it snowed a few inches on thursday and the snow clung to all the ice and made it look even prettier
it has stayed cold for the most part and we've had very little melting.  this morning the sun was trying to come out and the temps got up to about 33.  some ice was falling, but i think there is still so much ice out there.  tonight its freezing rain again and we are expecting 6-10 inches of snow?  then potentially another coastal storm on thursday into friday. 
and we've only just begun.........
i should mention that there are still some mainers who haven't gotten their power back yet.  a lot of people didn't have power again until saturday--we were very fortunate considering we live in an outlying area that we got our power back so quickly.



Thursday, December 26, 2013

the greatest gift notes part 2

*every little thing will be okay--because God is working good through every little thing

*joys are always on their way to us

*gifts always come out of the unseen & hidden places

*you only begin to change your life when you begin to change the way you see it

*seek out all things unseen

*the message of christmas is that this worlds a mess, and we can never save ourselves from ourselves and we need a messiah

*God is with us, God is for us, God is in us

*we were made to worship---every moment you live, you live bowed to something

*you always go farther when traveling light

*the little & the small is lifted up

*our joy goes beyond the walls of this world

*you will go out in joy, and be led forth in peace

*all worry dethrones God :( 
  for when the king rules, you cease to rule

*you've got to use the life you've been given to give others life

*you have been given gifts in order to be a lifeline to others

*rejoicing in the Lord happens while we still struggle in the now.

*the secret of joy is always a matter of focus

*nothing is impossible with God

*the good things in life are not health, but holiness
  are not riches, but relationship with God
  are not our plans, but His presence

*he withholds no good thing from us because the greatest things aren't ever things

*rest here

*there is only room in us when we are done with us

*you are unconditionally accepted and unbelievably wanted

*he comes for you in the wilderness

*be a dwelling space for God.  mary became a space

*the promises came true in the space of her surrender

*simply become a place for God

*before we are called to give, we are called to receive

*be a space for love to come

*space becomes a sanctuary

*he is with us, he will save us

*at christs birth a battle was waged and won for you
  satan falls like lightening from the sky
  the agonies of redemption

*this is a time of awed silence


*God stays with us

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

the greatest gift notes part 1

i've been working through this book

the greatest gift by ann voskamp

and, as i do with all my bible studies, take notes of things that appeal to me or jump out at me.  here are some of my notes from this book so far:

*the authority of God made all human beings

*God in three persons, uncontainable affection, knelt down and kissed warm life into you with the breath of His love.

*you are made of the dust of this earth,
  and you are made of the happiness of heaven
  and you are flesh, and you are spirit
  and you are two worlds longing for the home of forever and Him

*the answer to deep anxiety is the deep adoration of God

*be honest

*we only find ourselves when we find God

*let God find you

*troubles can make us better or bitter.  they can make us rise or sink


*listen to the carols just a little bit longer

*linger in the quiet

*only when you are overwhelmed with the goodness of God can you overflow with the goodness to others


*laughter is a gift

*we will laugh with relief for all eternity

*all fear is but the notion that Gods love ends.

*it doesn't

*the Lord will provide

*worry is belief gone wrong

*peace is belief that exhales

*hurry empties a soul

*love came down

*you can never be undone

* God is never absent, never impotent, never distant

*all is grace

*love comes surely

* Jews dance when the  ten commandments are read because its a proclaimation of Gods love for us.

* there is a scarlet lifeline of hope

*we are all looking for a lifeline

*risk to live

*rahab, great grandmother of jesus many times removed was a former prostitute & pagan

*God is coming! can you feel it?!

Friday, November 29, 2013

happy thanksgiving

we were all together for thanksgiving.  i did brunch and dinner.  some ate both with us.  it was also my sons 30th birthday so it was a little more special.

this little boy has stolen my heart for good

and this one has too

and this one is working on it


the next one coming up

  little charlie baby in there!

the greatest blessings of my life

days are busy, fitting in time spent with each one. helping them out when and where we can.  jeff and i both work part time so we have the extra time & we have the energy.

i've been doing a lot of sewing/crafting.  right now my project is a baby mobile for charlie--felt hippos--that is julies favorite!

thinking about decorating with my christmas/winter stuff, but it still feels like thanksgiving so i won't rush it. 

goal for this week is to walk six days, eat less carbs--esp. at night! and to finish the mobile.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

i'll rest when i'm dead

still busy!  i guess its the time of year.  working hard to get wood cut for next winter.  button up the property and get things ready for winter.  haven't done the leaves yet.  just bought a leaf blower--gonna give it a try.  blow most of them into the woods and blow some into one big pile to shred for compost.
we've been helping the kids out a bit too.  and i've been sewing, sewing, sewing!  i'm finally at a point in my life where i have the time and the money to do extra projects.  nice!

burp cloths have been a biggie on my list, with all the babies coming along.
i also just finished these crib rail covers for charlie babys crib

i've got lots more things on my sewing list to do.  a couple nursing covers, and curtains for sarahs kitchen. we already bought the fabric and i washed it today.

i've been juicing lately--mostly carrots, kale, & parsley. today i juiced almost a whole bag of ruby red grapefruits.  its a thing of beauty.  the juice gives me so much energy. its alive, unpasteurized juice, not dead grocery store stuff.  you can feel how good it is for you.
gardening is done for the season, although i still have kale i can pick.  today i created my last compost pile.  i layered new scraps, the older pile, shredded leaves, and grass clippings.  this should be ready to use by next may.
i've been spending at least one whole day with grandson joey each week.  he is 27 months and a joy to be around!  he spends the night every monday and on tuesday i hate bringing him home.  he is my first grandchild, and as such holds a special place in my heart.


his favorite thing to play with when he is here is the beans.  i filled a large shallow clear tote with a locking lid with dry beans and he plays with his trucks in it.  he also loves to bury toys and find them and sometimes he puts his feet in and buries them too!  when he gets a bit rambunctious with the beans and more start spilling out, then i put it away.  he is learning to keep the beans in the tote if he wants to keep playing.

i've been trying to keep up with studying my bible. i should do it daily, but for some reason i let it slip.  not a good thing.  i'm in the book of ephesians.  each day i write out at least five verses.  then i summarize it.  then i write 5 praises and 5 prayers in my bible study journal.  so far thats been working well for me.

well, there is another week on the wink!






Monday, November 4, 2013

busy, busy, busy

life has been very busy, but i am trying to keep it diverse so i don't burn out or get bored.  (as if that could happen!)

working on lots of baby projects for julie & bens little charlie who hopefully will arrive by the end of the year.

these are my most recent sewing projects. passy clips and bags to hold the pacifiers and keep them clean.

a repurposing project. this was our coffee table-it had a lid and was basically a big box for storing stuff. we turned it on its side and moved the legs and added a shelf.  cheery paint job and its all set for the playroom.

working on next years woodpile.  its been a struggle this year to find the time to work on it with all the other happenings around here.  we still manage to spend an hour or two a week, and we will see how far we get before the snow comes.

new grandson lukas is doing wonderfully! and everyone else is too.  we've been keeping joe overnight on mondays and we love it and so does he--makes me very happy.

jeff had a bad cold a couple of weeks ago and now i've got it.  i'm trying to keep going but taking it easy at the same time.  drinking tons of water, herbal tea, using apple cider vinegar, honey and cinnamon, juicing, and thinking positive!!!!

more sewing projects this week--teething rail cover & then start a hippo mobile.  it feels good to be completing these creative projects.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

more projects & new grandson!

i finished these: burp cloths, drool bibs -2 kinds
these projects i found instructions & patterns on pinterest.  i don't do tutorials, but there are plenty out there.  the fabrics are greys, blues, greens, flannel on the neckerchiefs and cotton with terry backing on the bibs and burp cloths.  all fabrics from joanns.
these are for baby charlie, he is due jan. 5th

this is lukas benjamin
8lb.7oz. 21 inches
born on saturday

ben, lukas, and grandpa
 had big brother joe at our house for a couple of days and now hes home with mom, dad, and lukas.

Monday, October 14, 2013


the leaves are a little past peak and falling. this great pond mountain in orland maine-just a few miles from my house-one of my favorite views.  i got to go hiking with my client there this week. he loves to take photos

i made this to hang over my grandsons crib.  he is expected to arrive jan 5th, but they tell her he is already a big baby and he may come early.  i told her not to believe them  ;)

i finished this fleece tied blanket for ethan.  the boys each need their own warm blanket for me to keep here

and this one is for joe, i'm going to work on it today
i feel good that i've been able to accomplish these projects in the past week & started to clean up my garden & we also got the garage cleaned up so we can start parking in it again for the winter.
mornings here are cold, but no hard freeze yet.  i don't think we've had but a couple of frosty mornings so far on the wink.  the days have been around 60 degrees for the most part and sunny--no rain for the past week!

Saturday, October 12, 2013

all boys!

we just found out last week that our 5th grandchild will also be a boy!
for anyone thats keeping track, that makes 5 boys
due 10/24
1/5 & 2/22
jeff & sarah haven't disclosed his name
so i knicknamed him "booger"
(heck, i thought it would make them tell me his real name!)
i'll have lots of grandsons to care for me in my old age

Sunday, September 29, 2013

family memories

yesterday was julies baby shower. 26 women and 5 children. in my little house.
but it worked. everyone had a good time
julie was happy.
thats what i was going for

her and ben were blessed with so many wonderful gifts
but more importantly time was spent with family and friends
and i was able to feed all of these people, plus the 8 men when they came back from their hiking--without stressing--i had a good time too!

and i couldn't have done it without my daughter in laws meghan and sarah. i thank them for helping me make the day special for julie

i had a lot of fun planning and crafting for this with pinterest for inspiration

                                                                  bubby & grammy
now we just sit back and wait for the babies to come
meghan is due on oct.24th.  everyone seems to think that baby lukas will come a bit earlier.
family is everything.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

down day

no worries! i'm happy!  this has been my only day in the past week to just stay home and i'm finding it hard to just sit down!!!!

i went on a trip down to mass. to go to IKEA with a friend. we had an awesome time and came back with her entire car filled with my stuff.  she promised next time she would fill it with her stuff too!
this was a long awaited spending spree that jeff agreed i should go on.  i ticked off tons of items from my wish list.  it was all about me (for a change)


i did buy these cute little blue chairs to go with a little white table i got from ikea a few years ago--perfect for the boys

its a warm, muggy day today. probably the last one we will have this season. fall is upon us. its been a pretty wet summer and i haven't ventured up to my chair in the woods. i did today but the mosquitos are still pretty bad. so i came back down to the yard and let the dragonflies protect me from the bugs.  i even had my bug zapper, but there were just too many of them buggers!

 i haven't done my "ings" in a while, so here you go
listening:  leaves rustling, crickets chirping, logging trucks rumbling
eating:  nothing
drinking: water
wearing:  blue sweats, white & blue tee with butterlies & sneaks
feeling:  okay. not too anxious or worried.  restless
weather:  nice early fall day, slight breeze, blue sky, warm and humid
wanting:  to shower, i feel buggy and sweaty from my walk
needing:  to focus more on most important tasks
thinking:  about what to make for dinner, i haven't been shopping too much lately for food
seeing:  the woods beginning to yellow, maples reddening, sheets flapping on the line; pink & red, my home sweet home
enjoying:  being home today

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

what i'm up to


a diaper wreath for the baby shower. i'm also working on a 3 tier diaper cake and little diaper babies to put in a basket.

we chicken sat for the neighbors over the weekend and this is one of the eggs (on the right, the one on the left is a grocery store large egg)


the eggs were really good. i really need to get off my a** and get chickens

i'm going on a shopping trip this weekend down to massachusetts with a friend.  we are going to IKEA!!!!!!! can you tell i'm excited.  its a five hour drive so we are staying overnight. then we will shop our way back home through kittery and portland.  i've not been away from jeff in a really long time so i'm feeling excited and nervous at the same time. but it will be good to get away from things for a bit. 


otherwise all the pregnant ladies are doing great. and something else we've been waiting on for a while finally happened........

jeff turned 55 in august and his UPS pension started!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  first check came this week. we are still so amazed by it.  he worked there for 17 years and now they will pay him for the rest of his life.  its not tons of money by most people standards, but it doubles our income. sigh.......the teamsters union is good for something ;)

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

end of august already?

well i'm not going to lament that summer is over (or almost over) because we still have weeks of summer left.  but the goldenrod is blooming in full force and the crickets are chirping away and the sun is at that slightly tilted angle that makes the light look a little bit lazy.  the garden is winding down, but the cherry tomatoes are finally ripening! do i want to say that the colors in the leaves are already changing?  walking out back and along the driveway the early signs of fall are definitely there.  and the wood splitting is going full swing

grampa giving joey his first lesson in splitting and stacking

we had a new furnace installed this summer and we switched from oil to propane.  its a high efficiency forced hot air unit.  it should cost us way less to run, plus no worries about the oil line freezing up in the winter, or ever having to clean up an oil spill. nice!  so this winter we are hoping to not rely on the wood as much as we have been, but we'll still keep a couple cords ready.  once jeff is done splitting this wood (the trees were cut last fall and have been drying) then we will start cutting trees for next winters wood.  we plan on cutting less and i've got my eye on quite a few that are casting early morning shade on my garden, then we'll go further out back and pick up where we left off last year.

this summer ethan turned one and we had a party at his house.  "batman" was the theme and i went a bit crazy with pinterest projects! but it was fun and i love to create

this summer also saw joey turn two and we also relied heavily on pinterest for decoration and activity ideas for his "art" party.

now i'm throwing myself into planning for my daughter julies baby shower.  i've got all my ideas pinned and i'll be shopping tomorrow for all i need to make the decorations.  i'm trying to keep it simple, that's hard for me, but i've already been accepting offers of help--so thats a great improvement for me!

well, i have today all to myself and i want to make the most of it, but i also want to just "be" and enjoy this summer day.  here in maine summer doesn't end until the snow flies!