Best Dog Ever

Beloved. The Weekly Photo Challenge.

Murphy.  The Airedale Terrier. A member of the family. Missed by all. RIP.

 

The grandchildren have grown up significantly since these photos were taken in June 2012.

 

Murphy the Airedale Terrier Tenth Birthday Blog

 

Murphy the Airedale – A Family’s Best FriendRest in Peace beloved Murphy

Photos Showing Growth

GROWTH– the Weekly Photo Challenge

And the grandchildren have grown even more since these photos were taken.

Except maybe Jack holding his Christmas present from his Grandma Marlene.  She takes the year of photos and creates a hardcover book for each grandchild. She makes one for the family, too, which is really nice to have the hard copies instead of a picture on a computer or phone.  A good way to document growth from year to year.

 

 

The Sock Monkey Book

Some of you’ve seen the little sock monkey I keep on my camera lens. He stretches around the cylinder, a gutted Beanie Baby. I’ve got a sweet spot for them.

Eleven years ago I made this Sock Monkey Book for granddaughter Anna(14 now). I found it on a shelf while re-shelving some children’s books at Mark and Erika’s. Finding some books to pass on to the younger grandchildren. Not sure if these blank Little Golden Books are still available but it was fun to make.

I’ve sewn a lot of sock monkeys over the years. This book tells the story of transforming a pair of Rockford Socks into a lovable toy.

The finished sock monkey joins the other toys.

Chex Mix Making

A few alterations to the original recipe but Wednesday night Laura guided Charlie and Maura in the holiday tradition of making Chex Mix. One site says “it’s been a party staple for 50 years”. I can tell you the original recipe was not on the boxes we had this year. Boo.

Baked at 250 F for an hour stirring every 15 minutes. What could be bad about it with all that melted butter and savory salt? Hmmmm

After the Mix making the two cousins played in Charlie’s new train tent. Crawling between the red and blue and back again. Then the added collapsible tunnel component.

A fun night.

Charlie said ” I love this game”

Finding What’s Good About Returning Home After the Holiday

My house is quiet this morning and it’s zero degrees with a windchill of plenty below.

I got back to Pittsburgh yesterday evening. I miss them all now, having spent two weeks with my families in Ohio.

This morning in my kitchen I see my 33 year old self looking at me making toast and wonder where the time flew – I took a cake decorating class in Germany with my friend J when Laura was small.

There’s the reliable top of the line toaster from my dear friend V.

Best 50th birthday present, still working wonderfully fifteen years later.

There’s the new ceramic pour over I received from James and Laura this Christmas. The family photo mug Marlene created for me last Christmas waiting for hot coffee to drip in it. The new spices and tiny lidded butter dish from J in Florida. Oh and the new spices on the rack from her,too. There are Christmas cards to read, bills to pay, Laundry, ordinary life stuff.

At my daughter’s home it’s “pour over” and mugs of places traveled. Every morning my DIL would make a fresh carafe of coffee. Both types delicious. How lovely it is to have someone serve you coffee. I made a pot in their fancy machine but I know they like it a certain way.

Five grandchildren in two homes guarantee fun, laughter and lots of activity. I like playing. Here at home, I’m thinking about finishing knitting projects, checking out a book at the library, hoping the pipes don’t freeze, going to a doctor’s appointment, meeting friends for lunch next week and continuing my efforts to reduce the accumulations in the house with multiple thrift shop trips with donations. I found I had difficulty doing this ongoing task so hired an expert to assist me, spur me on. Need to clear out my third floor.

It’s good to be home in my kitchen.

I’ll catch up on the blog and reply to comments, think about what’s next.

Schedule a battery replacement for my iPhone, (link to a Washington Post Article Below Run Don’t Walk To Replace Iphone Battery for $29). I won’t be running to the nearby Apple store as there is no availability support said to try tomorrow to schedule.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-switch/wp/2018/01/04/run-dont-walk-to-replace-your-iphone-battery-for-29/

Games Families Play

Do you have boxes of board games in your home? Or have electronics taken precedent?

This week I’m visiting family in Ohio and we’ve been playing board games. Some take hours and hours. The card games aren’t included in this picture but UNO is the most popular around here. Maura and I’ve played a few rounds. I heard the four grandkids were playing Life before Christmas.

Does anyone in your household seek world domination- or scarf up real estate, utilities and railroads, add houses and hotels?

On my mother’s side my Uncle John was very good at chess and my Uncle Robert was good at backgammon and Royalty. Both of their families are good game players. I think my family missed that game playing gene although we had Flinch. I looked up the vintage card game Flinch and it’s pricey on eBay.

Different ages prefer certain games and there are a few games I find difficult to stick with and finish to the win. If I were photographing games at my house you’d see Scrabble and Jenga, Boggle, Pictionary, Mille Bornes and Monopoly.

Good sportsmanship and learning to lose gracefully is an ongoing effort.

Following the rules, taking turns, paying attention are essential ingredients.

The new Risk has been trending at Mark and Erika’s house this week. I’ve been watching Ticket to Ride tutorials on YouTube to teach the grandchildren how to play.

At Laura and James’ house the selection is colorful and fun. Charlie is 2 1/2 so it’s Hi Ho Cherrio! Or these two games photographed by Laura today. The Sneaky Snacky Squirrel GameCharlie and the squirrel grab acorns. Goodnight Moon Counting Game

Airedales Amplify Festiveness

Exuberant, energetic and humorous.

The dogs, that is! They were even excited there was a layer of snow outside.

How did we get their attention toward the lens for this photo?

My son put two dog treats on top of my head!

It worked.

Crazy fun.

Henry on the left Josie on the right

you can see them eyeing those treats on my head. The kids thought it was pretty funny, too

(And not to forget the grandkids Jack Anna Maura and Michael). A merry Christmas Eve.

A new favorite for the end of 2017

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/2017-favorites/

He Didn’t Eat a Single Candy While Decorating

Guess they didn’t look like food to him? When he placed a gummi pineapple shape on the gingerbread house he said “I put on the vegetable.”

Laura whipped up some royal icing and put this kit together. Charlie (almost 2 1/2) helped.

Last night I helped Maura put together a gingerbread Starbucks Cafe. It collapsed and then we fortified it and propped it with glassware and coffee mugs. The second load of frosting worked like glue. Unfortunately, I didn’t photograph it.

Over the years, my friend Joanne has baked and decorated elaborate gingerbread houses from scratch. I baked a Church one year (1987) with melted lifesavers for stained glass windows and never again. I used to watch eager third graders make little graham cracker houses on empty milk cartons at school. Helped fish out milk cartons and rinse them, drain on a rack.

Little gingerbread houses appeal to me but I need to practice. Charlie loved the result!

HIDDEN

WordPress has  taken a week off from the Weekly Photo Challenge but fellow blogger Cee Neuner has created a Just A Fun Challenge- Hidden

check out her cats, hiding on   Cee’s Blogpost IMG_3033

if you’ve been following me since June 2010 you’ve seen my grandkids hiding under the Japanese Maple in their front yard.