cooking, grandchildren, recipe, Uncategorized

ribbit ribbit

In so much as we say we will indulge our grands with anything they want, secretly we have limits.  A pony?  Sure!  New shoes that their parents said are too pricey?  Sure!  Any book they want?  Why, yes indeed!

Sugar, not so much.

Luckily for us, their parents are well-educated and informed.  They know that sugar on little bodies is not a good thing.  Sugar on little people makes parenting so much tougher.

Sugar causes inflammation.  Sugar suppresses the immune system, a weak immune system is trouble.  Sugar generates alertness, making bedtime difficult.  On and on the list goes as to why we should all be serious about leaving out sugar.

My job?  My job as Grandma Daleen is to love them and I show that by listening to them, sewing for them & baking treats and goodies for them.

One trick to being a good grandma is to indulge my little darlings without upsetting the parental apple cart.  We think our grands are being raised extremely well.  So proud of our adult children.  We would like to respect their desire to raise healthy, well-adjusted young people.

However, I still want to bake fun, happy, silly treats for our grands.  I think, just maybe, I figured out a wonderful solution.

I found a new cookie cutter, several actually.  I only bought one to try.  I loved the idea of controlling the ingredients, yet making the impression so deep on the cookie that no frosting is needed.  Thus cutting down on sugar, yet still having a fun treat.

20170322_113751_resizedI searched for a recipe that wouldn’t spread too much. I didn’t want the shape of the 20170322_112953_resizedcookie to get distorted.  I played with the amount of sugar, so I used less.  I must say this recipe turned out perfect, perfect, perfect for these types of cookies.  Oh wait, maybe that is why they are called, “Simply Perfect Chocolate Sugar Cookies”?

https://bakingamoment.com/simply-perfect-chocolate-sugar-cookies/

The flavor is mild.  The dough turned out smooth and held its shape perfect.

20170322_120048-1_resizedThis practice batch of frogs is for Mr. Right’s 80-year-old chess teacher.  Chess teachers love chocolate frogs, right?

PS.  Oh, you KNOW I am going back to buy all the animal cookie shapes!!!!  Grands NEED homemade animal cookies!!!!

Chat soon.

 

 

gifts, grandchildren, haPPY, sewing, sewing for grandchildren, Uncategorized

fairy magic

All grandgirlies turning five years old, NEED a tooth fairy pillow.

I embroidered this sweet pillow with a fairy and she has a bit of sparkle to her magical wings.  I chose happy fabric to sew with and of course added snazzy buttons and ribbons. 20170308_152704-1_resized_1

20170308_152758_resized_1For the picture, I tucked in some money.  However, I am not the tooth fairy, so it only comes with a lucky penny slipped into the pocket. (side note, Papa Bruce “helps” with the magic by collecting dollar coins and sharing.)

Oh, and one other secret bit of magic.  I sent a little, tiny fairy door to the parents (wrapped in brown paper of course).  One night when the girls are 20170307_120616_resizedfast asleep, the parents will hide and “install” the fairy door and dust the step with glitter to be “discovered” at some time or another.

Grands bring out the magic in all of us.

Hope you choose to be the magician in someone’ s life.

crochet, friends, grandchildren, grateful, haPPY, Uncategorized

spirit lifting yarn

20170306_133222-1_resized_1While in line, to buy forgotten yellow yarn for a chicken beak, I spoke to the lady behind me.  (Wow, never thought I would type that sentence.  To be clear, the yarn for a chicken beak, not talking to a lady.)

In her arms, she juggled several rose, pale & hot pink skeins of yarn.  Draped over her arm was the beginning of a pink crocheted afghan.  I asked her what she was making.  She said her Great, Granddaughter wanted a pink, pink, pink blanket. So, how could she say no?

Grinning ear to ear, I told her I had two granddaughters & one grandson.  Then I shyly said, I am learning to crochet.  I asked her how long she has been crocheting and she smiled and said, “forever”.  Next, I asked her, who taught you?  She couldn’t remember, however everyone crocheted around her so it was probably lots of people.

Then she asked me, who taught you?  I said, You Tube.  (I had to explain briefly about the computer site You-Tube and taking lessons.)  She said learning the computer is way harder than learning to crochet.  She says she gets messages from her grandchildren on the computer everyday, so it was worth learning to use the darn thing.  haha

She made me feel like I am tied to a really good group.  People who have grands.  People who make things for others.  People who like to keep learning.  She lifted my spirits & offered encouragement.crochet lesson

My daughter in law, asked me to make a couple of hats for her friends’ preemie babies. Wow!  Pretty nice of her to think I could do that.  Did she forget I am a beginner?  I gotta tell ya, having someone think you are capable is pretty spirit lifting & encouraging. Then when you get to see a picture of the little tiny babies actually WEARING the hats I made……..well, that just elevated my spirits into the stratosphere!

A friend shared a picture of a crocheted apron with several pockets.  He thought of me collecting eggs and learning to crochet.  Simultaneously, the gesture made me giggle & happy.  His thinking was, hey, I bet she would get a kick out of this? egg apron (even though I have only collected one egg in ages and I have no idea if I could even crochet an apron)  I adore that he already thinks I can.  Lifted my spirits & offered a pocket full of encouragement.  (get it?  the pockets on an apron )

Never once did You-Tube mention that if you learn to crochet your spirits will be lifted and you find all kinds of encouragement.

20170220_103259-1_resized_1Yesterday, while opening the mail, out fell a card addressed to me.  yippee!  I carefully opened the envelope and what did I find?  The sweetest, photo card.  I had made a crocheted hat for a darling little girl in Pennsylvania.  (Her parents) She sent me the most adorable thank you card with a picture of her wearing the hat I made!!!  Pretty as a shiny new penny!  Gosh, my spirit soared and well, I am still walking on cloud 9.

Who knew learning to tie some yarn into different patterns of knots would encourage my spirit so much?

I guess the folks at You-Tube knew.

In this together friends,

Chat soon.

book review, grandchildren, haPPY, Uncategorized

happiness is what will save us

20170303_165258_resizedI just finished a wonderful book, “the happiness dare”  by Jennifer Dukes Lee.

Actually, I worked my way through the book with a friend and we compared our answers/had discussions at the end of each chapter.   It’s the kind of book you write in the margins, underline sentences, draw arrows on the side of the page, dog ear the corners, write out your answers………  you work, you learn so much,  you re-read paragraphs to understand every sentence.  My paperback edition is a bit rough-looking after a few weeks of love/use.

I highly recommend this gem of paper and ink.  Jennifer has common sense, a splash of humor and as a follower of Christ, offers up a perspective that is doable, most helpful and at the same time, she somehow makes you feel like she is talking directly to you.

Working your way through this book is both insightful and encouraging.  I think of myself as a person who seeks the happy.  I look for it.  However, oh yeah, as you can tell by my lack of blog posts, I have stumbled lately with finding that sweet spot of happy.

This thing we call life has a way of tossing in some tricky times, situations and events that are not so happy.

page 259….. Jennifer writes…..” Believe me, I know that there are days  when happiness seems like an awful lot of work………….But those are the days when happiness is absolutely worth the work – even if it’s hard.  Because sometimes happiness is what will save us. ”

Did you catch that?  Let me take a moment and stencil that on my wall.  Oh yeah, you KNOW I am going to paint that somewhere in our house.

Happiness is what will save us. 

Currently our Spring weather is more like a lion than a lamb.  We have pouring rain, dark ominous clouds, 40* and a wind that is blowing plastic sacks around the neighborhood.

20170303_165249_resizedI needed to find some spring.  I went to a local nursery and bought some.  When I paid for my purchase, I said to the cashier, thanks for selling spring.  She laughed.

Then I did something that really made me happy.  I bought a door.

A little, tiny, 4 inch fairy door.  I want to welcome sweet, charming, happy fairies into our home.

When the grands come to visit, I want them to stumble upon a little tiny door that is hidden, just enough to feel special.  I want 20170303_202341-1_resizedthem to find a tiny bit of glitter sprinkled on the miniature stone step.  Makes me happy to think about.

Some how day dreaming about what’s behind that fairy door makes me happy.

20170227_143424-1_resized_2Crocheting a new baby owl hat makes me happy.  Sewing an apron for a birthday girl makes me happy.  Hiding a sweet love card in Mr. Right’s suitcase makes me happy. Buying fluffy, white towels makes me happy.

In this together, friends.

What makes you happy lately?

Chat soon.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

art, grandchildren, haPPY, Uncategorized

art is grand

One of the reasons we know our gown kids are great parents?  They let our grands make art.

The parents don’t correct it or change it or suggest how it should look.  fb_img_1482341553586-1

img_6292Our grands are given the supplies and allowed to create whatever their heart desires. fb_img_1482384458993-1

Seeing young artists bloom is one of the best things in life.

Said the smiling, proud Grandparents.

 

fb_img_1482384455086

grace, grandchildren, grateful, gratitude, great marriage, haPPY, happy marriage, healing, husband, Uncategorized

wake up 10

flowering-kale-arrangement

I live in the middle of gratitude, so, each morning, even before my feet touch the ground, I list off 10 things I am mighty grateful for. Some make the list daily, others change on a whim.

 

Boy Howdy,  I feel lucky & bathed in Grace to start fresh, every single day.

 

1.  Mr. Right

2.  four kids

3.  three grands20161023_152356_resized

4.  Sweet Liberty

5.  amazing, healthy, healing body

6.  cushy, lush, wonderful, bed

7.  remembering: ironing leaves between wax paperwax-paper-leaves

8.  fluffy, extra-large, soft socks

9.  morning letter waiting for me from Mr. Right

10.  coffee (duh, being honest)

 

 

 

gift giving, gifts, grace, grandchildren, love, Uncategorized

oh deer, what do I hear

While putting away the Halloween decorations, tossing the carved pumpkins, eating the last of the roasted pumpkin seeds..I heard something.  I think………wait……..yes, I think it was a jingle bell.

Not only does Mrs. Claus have to start early, so does Grandma Daleen.

Last year, we found beautiful (and sturdy) advent calendars for the grands.  I tucked them away for this year.20161102_161101_resized

So we didn’t forget, I wrote on our kitchen calendar, November 1…….

 “send calendars to Z.A.C.”

This year, I stitched each a simple and sweet ornament.  I try to make something that is not breakable.  I want it to be cute and sweet, yet something even the parents would be okay with hanging on their tree.20161102_154558-1_resized

Um, yes, this is what grandmas are supposed to do.  They are suppose to make things for their grands.  Make cookies or an ornaments or a poem or a book or a quilt or a doll blanket or a car mat….whatever you can create… this is what all those years of practice were for.

Grandma’s tell their grands they love them with scratchy knit slippers (with treats tucked inside).  Grandma’s make silly bracelets or super capes.  Nanas and MeeMaws across the land make their super, secret, special cookies and put them in a special tin, just for their grands.  Great Grandma’s make personalized book marks for each little in her life.

You have time.  Get your creative juices flowing.

 I can promise you, no matter what you make, they will feel loved and of value.  Here’s the best part about making something for your grandchildren:  They will LOVE whatever you make.  They don’t criticize or judge.  They don’t point out your mistakes.  They are pure of heart.  Grand children just love that you made something for them. 

Here’s a peek behind the scenes:

I used a free pattern from    http://cutesycrafts.com/2013/12/felt-deer-and-fox-christmas-ornaments.html

Yes, I said free.  Good news, there are oodles of people on the” inter webs” who are sharing recipes and patterns for free!  Out of the goodness of their cotton pickin’ hearts.  Just because they want to share the love.   How’s that for lifting your spirits about mankind??

I used wool felt that I already had in my felt box. 20161102_154625-1_resized

I used thread  that I already had in my thread box.

20161102_154609_resizedI used ribbon that I already had in my ribbon box.

Scissors, needle and a couple pins.

A couple of hours later, TA -DA

Sweet, charming, adorable ornaments.  I stitched all sorts of crazy love and good karma into each.

Chop, Chop!

The time is now.

Please remember to make something with love for the sweet people in your life.

I would love to see and hear about what you are making for your grands or your niece, nephew, neighbor kiddo,  a little person that lives on your street.  You get the idea.

Instead of buying into the commercial notion that you have to purchase something , please take a moment, deep cleansing breath…… you can do this, make something with your very own hands.  I have faith in you.

When they hold and touch the gift you made, they will hold your love in their hands. It’s that simple. Really.  Nothing deep.  Just pure love for your grandchildren.

I look forward to hearing how you packaged cocoa or simple krispee treats.  I would love to hear what book you bought to go along with the glitter book marker you made.

This year, let’s share and lift each other’s spirits.

We all could use a little extra love this season.

In this together,

Chat soon.