Sunday, December 31, 2023

New Year's Eve.....

 The garden angel awaits my bringing her inside. She is sheltered under a roof but I am sure is cold.  We have a small amount of snow scatter in places. 

I shared a train yesterday so today I will share my train rack. I have old trains that I am able to display but they are not in good working order. My brother and I received the bottom train from Santa back in 1954.  It was in a box wrapped in brown paper with the not to Dwight and Larry from Santa.  It was the only way that my parents could figure out as to how to give it to both of us at one time. The train above is one of my dad's trains.

The bottom train in this photo is the first train that I received from Santa.  It is a light metal one and had a key the I had to use to wind it up and make it run. The engine is in really bad shape. That would have been in 1953 when I got it. I have seen that train in antiques shops for sale for a lot of money.  The top train was gifted to my late father.  He received two of them from my brother when he was in his 60s.  He really never played with them but his grandsons did.  When I closed down the parent's house I rescued it from a mess of boxed toys. The train's size are really too small to enjoy to make work easily. 

I am having some woodpeckers showing up at the soot.  Unfortunately the screen wire blocks the view and the camera's focus.  The male downy likes to pick through the soot for seeds. 

It is the last day of 2023. Our country needs to turn things around soon. I hope that in 2024 that I can say it was a good year.  Thanks for stopping by today.

Saturday, December 30, 2023

The Village News.....

 The newest addition to my wife's village. It is a general store with many things going on outside. At night the lights can be turned on with flashing lights and  music can be played. 

The train had to be moved to make way for the new addition.  It is an old fashion locomotive. with many riders catching a ride.

The coal car has two workers riding along. In this photo I see a santa in the back of the locomotive. A bear is runing the train.

The flat car is decorated with a tree and two other bears. A squirrel on a stump sits at the front. 

With older trains there were always a need for a caboose. This Noel caboose doesn't have any riders on it on the outside. 

The villagers have to go by horse drawn buggies. The buggie has to stay away from central town to not hit any of the citizens.  

We are above freezing today. It still feels cold but no snow is in sight.  Thanks for stopping by today.

Friday, December 29, 2023

Fading Season.....






As the season fades, I am still not ready to take it down. I know that we pace ourselves and we will not be in a hurry.  The first tree that went up, teddy bear tree, will be the first to come down.  Our mail is screwed up and we are still getting cards that were sent back on the 21st. I sent out two late Christmas cards yesterday as I was struggling to find addresses. 

We were just above freezing all day.  It is cold with a slight wind. We are promised sunshine tomorrow. That will be good as I seem to be bogging down with the winter that has just started.  Thanks for stopping by today.

Thursday, December 28, 2023

Thursday's Things.....

 This is a tree ornament as an example of a design era of the sixties. The wood pieces are minimal and symbolic but not very good at representing the manger scene. It is an ornament that just stays in the box year after year as a piece of history


In contrast to the above ornament is this one with precious moments influence in design. The child shepherd holds lamb like it is a stuffed ornament. It is a gentle ornament.

My sister-in-law would buy me these fun ones. The Italian snowmand holds a basket of bread loaves. He even has an Italian mustache. Sadly we lost Linda this past year but I will always smile and think of her with this piece. 

My agapanthus took a hit with one of our freezes. I had put it outside while we had company staying in the downstairs area.  It looks like some of it is starting to grow again.  It is a bulb/root-like plant and maybe it won't be harmed at all. 


I bought different kind of birdseed today.  The last bag had too many  sunflowers seeds in it and I needed more millet seed.  I will mix the two bags together as I put out seed.  Our new neighbors to the south who were from Colorado have put out bird feeders.  I have been the only one here for eight years that fed the birds and now I have company.  I saw a cardinal the other day in the tree and it needs to come back and eat these seeds all over the deck. 

Thanks for stopping by today.

Wednesday, December 27, 2023

Snoopy Plus.....

 Sometimes one needs to just remember the things from the past that make you smile. My Snoopy figurine was gifted to me from my wife. She knows that I cling to the cartoon series characters.  I had a shirt with all the friends on it, all in a row.  I would wear it to teach school because I was an art teacher.  I wanted to promote creativity as much as I could. 

I have been gifted with different things as they are a fun thing to pick up for the aging fan. I have had this for a few years. 

I bought this one for myself just in the past two years. It was sitting on a shelf at Hobby Lobby and I didn't bother to look at the price. The red on this mug is so amazing.

Wrapping paper has Snoopy carrying his lights out to decorate his doghouse. On the shows you can hear him preparing Christmas dinner inside.

Charlie Brown is so concerned about the commercialization of Christmas and he is upset that his own dog puts up lights. This too is wrapping paper illustrations.

My oldest son is hooked on the theme too as he displays his Charlie Brown tree every year in his house. He bought it a few years ago.  He listens to all of the music from the Charlie Brown shows.

Brown's neighbor friends all dance because it is Christmas time. Pig Pen plays his bass fiddle as everyone dances. 

Woodstock is Snoopy's close friend as they go through the year. The saddest cartoon that was created was when Charles Schulz passed. It was a cartoon showing Schutz in a back view walking into heaven and Snoopy was with him. Snoopy had his suitcase in hand.  After his passing the family company revived though and all does live on today in the funnies world.  

Thanks for stopping by today.

Tuesday, December 26, 2023

Tuesday...feels like Monday.

 Bear soldiers guard the neighbor's yard with great color and lights. I assume the lights will stay on until after New Year's Day.

Our temps have dropped outside and we had a light snow. The tropicals are enjoying their heated water inside. I have three tanks of fish all enjoying the feeding times and sleeping at night with warm water. 

We got enough snow to wet the pavement but nothing stayed on the ground. Our rain was good but we only got .80 of an inch. We  couldn't get even above an inch. 

Our wreath from our family in Maine has star fish as part of its decoration. We talked to our son yesterday and we talked about the things going on in Maine. The tourist town of Bar Harbor has shut down for the season and his traffic is easier. He drives to work though the area every morning.  Our gifts for the dogs were a hit and the cat toys ended up being for the dogs too. All our gifts got there early enough this year and that was a good thing. They haven't had a moose running through their yard this year. 

The day after Christmas is such a dull day as we are doing less today. I had to go get an almost too late prescription today and the grocery store was vacant.  I still needed to pick up three things as of grocery item in spite of all the food we had leftover from our Christmas dinner for two.  We don't have to cook for a couple days and that is a good thing.  

Thanks for stopping by today.

Monday, December 25, 2023

Bethlehem Carvings...

 The pieces are from Bethlehem carved from olive tree wood. We were able to visit that shop in 2019.

Sunday, December 24, 2023

Christmas Eve.....

 We were at a Christmas Eve service today. We hadn't been to one since covid season.  Our rain is welcomed and snow will come later in the week. Our figurine bought at a lesser kind of store and yet I see it is being used as a background for a national religious organization. We like to buy sculptrues even though they are mass produced.  We wrap it up very carefully to keep it safe during the off season. All our Christmas obligations are done now and we are resting. It has been a good day. 

Thanks for stopping by today.

Saturday, December 23, 2023

Sat. Stuff....


 Our grand kids were here over Thanksgiving and made up some ginger bread house kits.  The one boy wanted to try eating the hard, cardboard-like pieces after they were done. 

I doubt that they ever have eaten real gingerbread cookies.  We bought three today at the grocery store and have boxed them up ready to send them out for them to eat. They smell good like the gingerbread cake that my mom use to make.  As a kid a great aunt would offer me her molasses cookies and they were hard as rocks.  My mom's gingerbread was always served with a brown sugar sauce. 

I was out this morning buying one last gift for my wife.  Of course these ornaments were marked down a large discount and I brought them home for our tree.  I like the traditional shappe and the hand painted decorations.  If they aren't hand painted, I would like to see the machinery that could put that design on it. 

We received a last minute gift at the door this afternoon.  I also got another Christmas card from a brother that I had already sent to a few days ago.  I am wrapping some of my presents today. I will be ready for Christmas.  I made another trip to the grocery store and that was a real challenge with everyone panic buying.  I have a med that should be ready today and if not I will have to go get it tomorrow.  The pharmacy is just a mile away so its not a big deal and maybe there will be one more item that I need to get for Christmas dinner.  We are warmed up again today and we got just a slight amount of rain.  Maybe the next two days we can get some measurable rain.  It is not said we are sixteen inches behind in moisture.  

Thanks for stopping by today.

Friday, December 22, 2023

Friday's Finds......


A new ornament that is not a real owl. It is a fun kind of dedoration with the stripes on the feathers giving it an appearance of a snow owl. 



The lights of the tree give off a warm glow under the tree. No specific object is a center of interest but the compositition is all of parts of the whole.

The days before Christmas are becoming less quickly. We are not having company for the holiday. It makes it easier for us to be spontaneous and find easy ways to enjoy our holiday.  We will eat out more and watch more movies.  All our packages are sent and have arrived and we have gifts that have already arrived in the mail.  We won't have snow but we are hoping for a lot of rain. 

Thanks for stopping by today.

Thursday, December 21, 2023

Some Things to Share....

 Ceramic birdhouses of the past. Created in the classroom as examples to encourage students to build creative items. They weather well outside but I will eventually bring them in to the basement stoarge area. 

The poinsettia gets to travel to the sunroom in the daytime and inside at night.  I usually buy them later in the season and yet the grocery store doesn't have such perfect growing conditions or such great care.

It is said that rain will be better than two feet of snow. We are now in our third year of being in severe drought.  Today's kids probably wouldn't like the snow as much as we did when we were kids.  They do slide down hills on golf courses but there aren't any places safe in out area. Our street would be wonderful though but they would have to close off the streets to hundred of houses. 

I bought lots of stuff while in the pet store today but I didn't buy wild bird seed.  I had walked to the opposite end of a mall area while my wife was shopping and I decided I wasn't going to walk two blocks with a large bag of seed over my shoulder. I can drive my car tomorrow when I am out buying one last Christmas gift for my wife.  I received a card from my cousin today, who never sends me a card, so I will send another one out tomorrow.  I thought I was done doing cards.  I have lost people, they have passed, and my list has decreased.  Some of them may be  not gone but they are so old that they aren't sending cards.  I can research on the net for some of them but will do that after Christmas. 

We are off for Pizza Ranch tonight. We go very early to beat the crowd and yet it still is eating out in chaos. The size of the crowd grows while we are eating.  It is fun but I would not like to do it regularly. Thanks for checking in today.

Wednesday, December 20, 2023

Middle of the Week.....

 This was a very pleasant surprise to see him at the feeder. I have suet out but he was working on the sunflower seeds.

The red bellied woodpecker doesn't have red on its belly. The shine or hint of red is on its chest feathers. 

I have been crossing things off my list today. I had confusion going on with the doctor's office and my medication.  Finally talked to the right heart nurse and things were corrected with the right mg in a med. It took a click of a key on the computer to make it happen. Clerical errors that make ones life difficult.  I worked on Christmas cards this morning while waiting for a call back from the nurse and I paid a couple of bills. I threw away a multi-cd player today that had actually stopped working last year at this time.  I tried to play it a couple of days ago and then remembered that a cd was jammed in it and the player just stopped working. I had to tear it apart to pull out a valued cd.  It was old and it made a loud sound as I dropped it into the garbage bin. It feels good to get junk out of the house. 

We are sunny today but it still isn't that warm. We are getting the promise of rain on Christmas and we are all happy for that.  It might even be measurable and it won't  be snow. 

Thanks for checking in today.

Tuesday, December 19, 2023

Tuesday's Leftovers....



 My left over tree that is in the spare bedroom's window.  I light it so it looks shows up at night from the street.  Nothing fancey and I had to sit it up on a tall stool to get it up to window height. 

 A very old set of lights that we bought in Kansas City at the Hallmark store.  They are plain but still have a subtle beauty. 


I was too busy today to take new photos so I dug through the pile to find things that I have never shared. We finished wrapping and boxing up our Christmas presents for the Illinois family of five. It was a major project both of buying them yesterday and shipping them out today.  They will get their presents in two days. 

We had a mild warm up today and yet it is still cold. We are inside for the rest of the day and will have pizza for supper. I am certain we will do another Christmas video. We have two of them down and I think at least five to go. Tomorrow will be a new day with cards to be sent and maybe some shopping for my wife for Christmas too. Thanks for stopping by today.