Monday, December 30, 2013

A December Vacation



The smiles on our faces reflect the fun that we had at our annual Gaslight Theater Holiday Show. 

Then it was on to a special weekend in Scottsdale where the first stop was my parents' favorite watering hole.


The evening was spent reminiscing over a beautiful album of photos that Robyn had arranged. We are sure that Mom and Dad were looking down on us fondly. I was definitely in my happy place with everyone gathered together.


My ever present and vibrant Auntie Barb is as kind as she is beautiful!



A beautiful Arizona day found us gathered at Mc Cormick Railroad Park in the heart of Scottsdale celebrating the life of our beloved Mum and sharing her memory.

Her love of the blue skies and sunshine created a perfect blend for the hours spent playing golf.



We enjoyed blue skies too as we shared stories led by Bret who delivered a heart warming remembrance of the love that we received. 




Thank you to our amazing daughters who put their hearts and souls into creating prayers and music. Thank you for the support of all our husbands that accepted this family get-a-way without a fuss!



Get ready to be awed by glass artist Chihuly at the Phoenix Botanical Gardens.  
The spectacular display can be seen through May 18, 2014. 
The Arizona setting sun and cactus garden background is a gorgeous combination.
Add a beautiful SIL and it is magic.




These huge works of art are arranged within the gardens and as the sun goes down they come to life!

Lest these photos fool...the glass is delicate, intricate and yes....sharp!


The mature saguaros in the foreground give you an idea of the size of these sculptures.



All the while our favorite 'littles' were keeping up with us.
Now it is their turn to visit a museum.
We don't see much sea life in these parts so we were all mesmerized by the ocean beauty at the Sea Life Museum.


Our hotel had an amazing life sized gingerbread village. 


We even made one of our own.
NOTE:  This could become a competitive endeavor*!*!*



We are now experts in making wallets a la masking tape.

 Here are the crafty ladies sitting in our boot of course.


I even had a chance to slip away and check out a vintage marketplace that was on my list.


Our vacation was magical and memorable.

We returned home overflowing with a desire to give our hearts during this season. 

We had that opportunity at Saguaro Canyon Church Blue Christmas Service that is held each year on December 21. The service provides hope for those experiencing grief, loss or pain on the longest night of the year. 



Knit with love and intention, these prayer shawls provide a blanket of protection to those in need.


Over four years ago we were introduced to our special Bolivian friend named Ruth. We have traded so many letters with each other. We are amazed by her positive attitude and her love for Jesus. Sharing scripture with her has provided so much to my heart. The pictures that she draws always include a sunshine; this despite the fact that she lives in a rain forest with dirt floors and parents that are often out of work. Someday I hope that we meet one another with the help of Compassion International.


 So friends, I end 2013 with a full heart and more grace than I started the year.
  Thank you to our local Home Depot for the complimentary evergreen sprigs. 
A few cranberries and candles that float keep this spruce moist.




 I heard a rumor today that the Packers are still in the game. Who knew?
May you all have a blessed 2014 full of grace!




Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Tipsy on Tea

Here's hoping that we can make this a new tradition each Christmas.
So the next time you are feeling a little out of sorts follow this recipe:

Grab a hat!


To make it extra special grab your favorite ladies 


and head to the Chantilly Tea Room.


You will feel special from the moment you arrive!



For some extra fun do plan to decorate your hat with fresh greenery 
and add a dash of "Mad Hatter"!


Pass the hat around



fill your tummy with tea and sugar and prepare to be giddy!
 
 
REALLY GIDDY!

 
 With LOVE from all the girls!

Friday, November 29, 2013

Harvest Blessings

As we gather 'round our table today we are grateful for our many blessings.
 
Each year we harness old traditions and embrace new ones. New for this year was our fresh turkey...and I do repeat...fresh!
 
We braved the rainy hills of Southern Arizona to visit Sonoita.


A kind family greeted us.



Unsuspecting turkeys greeted us as well!

 
This is where it gets dicey!


 
Fast forward to what is more familiar with only a few quills left.
 
 
The family at work to provide our provisions.
 
 
Rick makes the final selection from the icy water bath.

 
This was the yummiest bird we have ever cooked!
 
 
Simple blessings.
 
Our youngest blessing in the latest project off the needles.
Peace and joy to you all.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

WELLING WITH GRATITUDE

 
 
Fall has been very busy in our house...it almost looks like we live on a farm but alas we are grateful for the farmers that have grown this crop of beautiful vegetables.
For a mere $ 10 you can get 60 pounds of veggies
 
Have your recipes ready to prepare large volumes! 
Please come Saturday, December 7th at 8:00 AM
Market on the Move.
 
 


It never ceases to amaze me that we get bumper crops of something different from our desert garden every year. This year it is pinecones! We recruited a special buddy to harvest them for us.






How does a little girl get ready for her first tea party. Practice of course.
Stay tuned for the big event!

 
 
Off the needles for a new itty bitty.
 
 
Hello sewing machine!

 
Flower Power!
No idea yet what I will do with these but they make me happy!
 
 
Yes we still attend the occasional political dinner to fundraise for our favorite Arizona Congressmen.
Here we are with David Schwikert (pictured far right)

 
 
Introducing STUDIO 204!
Thanks to the Rattlesnake Espresso Cafe for the gallery space where my husband hangs gorgeous acrylic paintings.
Collection Studio 204 now on display!
 Check it out at 8401 E Broadway
 


Life is a race. Embrace it, pace it, but finish with all your heart!
I thought it was uncanny that my race number was my age...only backwards!