Friday, January 24, 2014

It's My Blog's Third Anniversary!

 Today's my blog's anniversary, my mother's birthday,
and my Etsy shop's  second  anniversary too! 
I am so blessed, with all these wonderful things  in my life,
and I'm  looking forward to another  fantastic year, and blogging about it.
 My blog is fun for me. I love sharing pictures of the beautiful things I see, and talking about my life as a grandmother and  I enjoy showing vintage and antique pieces that I use in my home, or sell in my shop.

  I am  so blessed to still have my mother, and so pleased that she's in fairly good health, and that we can share our faith and our lives. We share many interests, such as crafts,cooking, enjoying tea, and most importantly our big,beautiful family. She has many children and grandchildren, who I, of course, love very much too!
Happy Birthday Mother!

I have a very large family. Here are many of us, at a summer '13  birthday bash.

 So, at this special time of year, as I put away Christmas stuff for me and all my clients, during this long cold winter, the in-between time after the holidays, while we await Easter, the spring and garden activities, I'm slowed down, stuck inside more.  So I can be  focused on those that are the most dear to me.   I'm feeling a little sentimental, not really wanting Christmas to be over, but moving ahead to the next celebrations of life.  A new year promises much excitement and joy, with my ever growing family and business!

  No time for SAD, which is very real and I don't mean to make light of it, because I see it in others and it is seriously debilitating.   I really consciously fight any slight feelings of depression, by getting lots of exercise, laughing and playing, and keeping very active.  I concentrate on positive affirmations, reach out to others, help friends, read good books and pray.  We all have to stick together.  Life is sometimes really tough!  The news is discouraging, businesses are suffering, and the weather has been extremely cold and dangerous. I've made it a point to look in on my older neighbors, and every couple of days, do little gestures, like taking fresh fruits and homemade treats. People need each other, and little things means a lot.  The older I get the more I realize that.

  I've been busy with little Thomas almost every day.  He is so active, and learning so much each day. Our biggest accomplishment recently is getting completely  potty-trained.  I am so lucky to be his Granny-Nanny,  it is the most rewarding job I could ever have!  

 At 3 1/2, he is really charming now, and has quite  lengthy conversations
 with the  lovely waitresses at our favorite neighborhood restaurant,  Larry's II.
The staff is super friendly and attentive, makes families feel  really welcome.   

Demolished that strawberry pancake!

Back at home, Tommy wants to help when I cook. Here we are making
Italian Roasted Chicken Breasts
                   First I cut the breasts into smaller pieces, and arrange in large baking dish.
                   We just pour any Italian Salad Dressing over the chicken.
                    Marinate for a couple hours,
                    then bake at 350* for about 1 hour, turning occasionally. 
 Easy and tasty! 

 I let him squeeze the dressing, and sprinkle seasoning.
 He really likes to help,  tries hard and feels proud to help.
I cooked a huge package to use for dinner tonight and it will make a couple other meals too.
We like it for slicing on salads to pack in their lunches,  and then I'll make another chicken dish in  the next couple days.
Julie and Andy work long days and like coming home to  home-cooked dinners, I'm sure.

 Finally,  he is old enough to understand when I want him to be still for a picture!

  He  just loves the outdoors, and lucky for  us!---  There is a playground right across the street,
and playmates down the street near the cul-de-sac.  Better get outside while it's nice, because we're having lots of lousy weather lately! Lots of snow coming again this week.

    "Forget Batman:  When I really thought 
about what I wanted to be when I grew up,
 I wanted to be my dad."  ----Paul Asay
              author of   God On the Streets Of Gotham,
                              What the Big Screen Batman Can Teach Us About God And Ourselves

So cute, climbs up onto the new bar stools,to be just like his dad, who's doing work on his lap-top.

 One Father is worth more than a thousand schoolmasters.
                                                                   -George Herbert

Tommy just adores his daddy, and I encourage this attachment, because I feel it's so important that fathers be involved in every aspect of their young children's lives.  So I always make a big fuss when my son -in-law comes in  after work.  "Daddy's home!"we shout, and Tommy reaches up and Andy grins. Melts my heart.  Then he sits as close to his daddy as he can.  They are best buddies.  Daddy usually tucks him in at night. 

The righteous who walks in his integrity- 
                                                   blessed are his children after him.                                               -                                                     --Proverbs 20:7

  Another important job grandmas have is supporting and encouraging the parents of her grandchildren. Just being there to reinforce the family family's ideals and rules, and ease the burden when Mom and Dad need a little help or a break makes a big difference.  I like to think that I  help make things run smoother at their house.   Now I'm helping the little family prepare for baby sister's arrival in the spring. It is most important to listen to the expectant parents concerns and reassure them.

  I loved shopping with my daughter for some new maternity clothes and sweet little baby girl outfits.

Cupcake clothes
 Tommy  knows he's getting a little sister and he calls her "Cupcake"

More Cupcake clothes
 How to be a useful Grandma......
  • Learn to be there for them, and when to let them be alone,
  • Listen, and reflect their thoughts, 
  •  give advice only when asked,
  •  do little things they don't have time to do, but need done.
  •  and always remember that they are the bosses of their home and family,
 and you will always be welcome, greatly appreciated and a highly respected grandma!
 Happy Grandparenting!

Love, Linda