Chocolates, Scotties….and….

Yesterday, I decided that since the sun was shining and my wanderlust was kicking (and kicking HARD!) we should take a trip to the mall to do some returns and perhaps even a little shopping! Mark unhesitatingly agreed so we were off for the afternoon.

Since we were going to be near the family’s favorite Chinese restaurant, I mentioned lunch and everyone gave the thumbs up.  We ordered ahead and picked it up along the way.  I told Mark I needed something to drink with my meal, so we sent Ben into CVS Drugstore to grab me a Pepsi.  As we awaited his return, I told Mark maybe they have some cool Christmas stuff marked down! I am sure I heard him groan as I opened the door and swung my feet on down to the ground!

Okay….so, you can say that I live under a rock. I won’t be the least bit insulted or annoyed as I rarely ever watch television at all. I do listen to the radio, but the Christian station I hear doesn’t have any advertisements at all.  Thus, I live a seemingly un-inundatedbythemedia life!

As I gazed up and down the 75% off Christmas aisle, my eyes lit upon Hershey’s kisses.  My family loves the Peanut Butter Blossom cookies made with kisses on the top, so I decided to pick up a couple of bags that I could freeze to use later.  The only thing is, there were *several* different types of bags of kisses!  I timidly picked up one bag….hmmm…..CHERRY CORDIAL CREMES! Were they kidding? I LOVE cherries! I really can turn down chocolate most any time, but cherries and chocolate? Mmmmmm! That bag was mine! As I perused, there were Candy Cane Kisses (white chocolate with pieces of peppermint candy cane in them) and Mint Truffles, as well as (the healthier) Special Edition Dark Chocolate Kisses, which I declined.


I went to the register with my little bags of sweet treats, along with a box of Reese’s Peanut Butter cups for Michelle. The box was rather large, with a wild green and pinkish print on it. It said on the outside that the box was a recipe card box and contained 24 recipe cards, using hershey’s products along with the big bag of mini Reese’s cups inside.  I also bought another small box of Dove chocolates for a gift.  When the total for all of these goodies was $6.01, I nearly flipped! The Hershey’s Kisses normally sell for 2/$5.00 on special!

I walked to the car, feeling rather smug. I showed Mark the goods with a poker face and he thought I had lost my mind. Then when I told him those Kisses were 75 cents a bag, he told me to run back and grab MORE! Thus, we have several bags of Kisses hidden away!

After the great candy caper, we were off to the mall. Ben had wanted a specific belt, so Mark looked online and found one at the mall. He called ahead to confirm that they actually had them in the store, so Ben and I went into the mall together.  After buying his belt, I wanted to check out Macy’s, as I had bought some really cute and very functional Scottie socks there before Christmas. I figured they would be on sale if they had any left.

As I walked into the misses department, my eyes felt deceived as I ran head on to a rack featuring this:


For some reason unknown to me, manufacturers always produce Scottie sweaters at Christmas, so every year, I wear a new sweater for the big day! This one was marked down 65% and is wool, as opposed to my collection of cotton Scottie sweaters! (all bought after Christmas, and all on sale!)

The photo below shows the detail on the nape of the neck.


Macy’s had no Scottie socks, but the sweater was a good consolation, so I worked my way back to the truck. I had to stop into Sears for Mark, so as I walked past the ladies department, what should jump off the shelves at me? Yes, Scottie pajamas! Okay, I NEED pajamas like I need a hole in the head. But, at 50% off, these flannel jammies looked so warm and cozy. AND, Michelle might like them!  (and, she did, indeed!)


By this time, I was nearly delirious. I belong to Scottie email lists, “boards”, whatever you choose to call them. The women there are constantly telling about the Scottie goodies they score here and there. Well, I never seem able to find anything Scottie very often, so I felt rather pleased!

And, whilst on the subject of great “finds”, I must show the terrific windbreaker I discovered at Sam’s Club the other day…..


YES! Only a couple of weeks ago, I moaned to Mark that I would LOVE to have a jacket with the Sabres’ new colors. They were previously red and black, but I LOVE the dark navy and gold colors they now sport!  I had walked into Sam’s and found a table with a SEA of Canary yellow windbreakers sitting on it.  Now, don’t get me wrong. Canary is a wonderful color IF one looks good in it. But, it makes me appear pale and sickly. Michelle and I dug through the pile and she found this one single BLUE with canary trim windbreaker! It is a men’s large, which is really too big on me, but Mark said it looks fine. So, I wear it!

Wow! I have been finding some cool things!  And, I found something else at home last night to top everything off!

I have a very dear friend down in Pennsylvania who is the “listmom” for one of my Scottie email lists. She had two Scotties….Piper, who was 7, and Max (I think Max is 3) Shortly before Christmas, the breeder (Alix) who sold her Max passed away. Alix was not that old, and it was a real shock to the Scottie world. She originally had a knee surgery, and things went downhill from there.

Well, just 4 days after Christmas, Jan (my friend) lost her little Piper. My heart goes out to Jan, as she was shocked and saddened by Alix’s death. Her little Piper went into renal failure and passed in her sleep. I wanted to send a little something more than just a card. As I was cleaning the bedroom yesterday, I found another one of the crocheted Scottie “pictures” like the ones I made my friend and Murphy’s breeder! I was so happy to find this. I am going to buy a frame it and get it sent off to Jan next week. The strange part is, I have no recollection of making this!

Sometimes we don’t even have to leave the house to find just the right gift!

Ah, the Night Before Christmas!

As I was reading through my favorite blogs today, I especially liked the entry at Ayrshire + Photographs where a lovely photograph highlighted an ornament on the Christmas tree. I got to thinking that yesterday I was looking at our tree and I smiled as I looked at the ornaments as a good many were handmade… me!

Many years, I came across a design or pattern for an ornament and I would go great guns, working to make up enough of the ornaments to fill a Christmas tree! I would work diligently, but by the time Christmas came around, I would give away the bulk of my efforts, realizing many people treasured handmade ornaments. I would think perhaps I would then work through the new year, making more ornaments. However, something else would catch my fancy and I was off and running in new directions!

One year when Mark and I hadn’t been married very long, I decided to make crocheted angels! I think I made about 30 of these angels but only about 8 of them remained here!


The little red heart ornament next to the angel was one Michelle designed and crafted for us several years ago. She had no pattern, but devised this on her own. Rather cute, isn’t it? She probably took her cues from the ornaments below.


My paternal grandparents came to the US in 1907 from the Ukraine. Needless to say, the love of bright color was passed through the genes! I embroidered so many of these ornaments. When I was young, I used to glean sewing pattern books. I loved crafts and sewing! I found these patterns to embroider in a Vogue catalogue in the 1970’s.  I must have made close to 50 of these ornaments.

About 6 or 7 years ago, I joined an ornament swap with several of my soap-making friends from all over the US.  Everyone knew I loved Scotties, so I put my brain into overdrive to create a design that was purely my own. I used cotton linters and a cookie stamp to make my little paper Scotties featured in the center.  I painted the Scottie, colored each little bow about the neck, then sewed two laces around the outside. I then glued a green circle to each back with a red ribbon to hang the ornament.


And, lastly, I crocheted a lot of snowflakes, but found them a bit boring. Since they had a Victorian feel to them, I glued on little gold-colored beads, along with ribbons and ribbon flowers.


We do have several bright red glass balls on the tree as well.  I find something almost “comforting” about hanging my handmade creations on the tree every year.  Perhaps it has to do with the fact that each represents me!

 Of course, there are the hundreds of tiny Scottie ornaments I made from polymer clay and placed on top of small bells. I showed them on this blog before, so I shan’t show them again so as not to bore my dear readers to tears!

And so, to all, a Good Night!

A Rather Industrious Day

This morning when we got up, everything looked as though it had been air-brushed! After rain last night,  we had wet snow this morning.


Mark suggested that we should get the camper parked in its winter parking spot this morning. We drove up to our “local” convenience store (6 miles away) to purchase three bags of rock salt.  The kids and I shoveled off the entire driveway (about 125′) and then we salted. The kids hooked up the camper to the truck and Mark drove on down the driveway. We never had a four-wheel-drive vehicle for the camper before, so it was a totally new experience. The old truck *never* would have been able to tuck the camper away. It would have slid and gone sideways, but Mark was able to park the camper in its spot quite handily. What a relief. The weatherman is warning, as is Weatherbug on my computer,  of a winter weather “watch”. This doesn’t necessarily mean we are going to get socked with more snow…it only means that we “could” get about 6 more inches of snow. We are also being told we may get a “doozy” of a storm come Sunday.

After working out in the cold, Michelle and I came in the house to do some work, while Mark and Ben went out for awhile, shopping.

Michelle helped me finish my project for my friend, Linda. I am happy with the result:


Excuse the reflection of the photograpgher hovering on the right side of the picture!

Yes, that is the same Scottie as the valance I made. I loved the little Scottie, so I made it using a much smaller crochet hook and a finer thread.  I bought the frame last night at TJ Maxx. I looked and looked for a suitable frame and decided that the gold would really set off the black and white. This afternoon, as I was finishing framing it, I smiled from ear to ear when I read a tiny sticker on the back… states that the frame was made NOT in China (seems everything comes from China anymore!) but in Canada! Linda takes pride in Canadian made goods, so I was thrilled!

For your viewing pleasure, as I was going through photos, I came upon these that I thought I would share…..

The first is a tiny Chickadee taking off from the feeder……


and, what looks like a free-falling Goldfinch!


Random Thoughts Before Christmas

This morning when the clock radio came on, it announced that the weather outside was frightful! We are under dueling air masses….one bringing warmer temperatures, and the other full of Arctic air. The net result is snow, sleet, and freezing rain. The terrible combination!

When we went outside, everything was encrusted in a shroud of ice. Even the Scotties, complete with 4-wheel-drive, proceeded with caution.  You can see the icy “finish” on the Dwarf Alberta Spruce out front.


The Scotties love cold and snow.  Angus particularly loves this frosty weather.  When he goes outside, after he is done with matters at hand, he “snakes” his way around the yard. He tilts his head, back and forth, rubbing his beard, then head on the scratchy surface. As he works his way along, he eventually tumbles, rolling about on his back….wiggling around the entire time!

I had mentioned the little dish my friend, Linda, in Canada sent. I was able to photograph it this morning.


I love the face on this little laddie!


And speaking of Scotties….I forgot to mention I had completed the valance I was making for the front windows….


As you can see, the red plaid fabric really sets this piece off! I would love to make some red plaid curtains, but I think Mark would say they are far too “bold”.  I came to an impass on the valance once it was complete, as I didn’t want to sew little rings onto my work to hang the valance. What to do…what to do….


I looked around, trying to find hardware for hanging curtains. I did finally find some rings that had an “alligator clip” affixed to them.  If I cannot find anything I like better, those will probably be my choice for hanging.  I have a beautiful book about filet crochet in which all the photos are taken in Holland. I would love to use some of the pretty clips they used, but as I have dug through the book, it seems there is no mention made as to where they might be purchased.

I am finishing up Linda’s gift, so that project is my priority at the moment. I would also like to make a little something for the breeder from whom I purchased Murphy.  I will have to see how industrious I can be until Christmas! (why is it I always think of a really GREAT gift just before Christmas?)

The New Crochet Project

 Since I have so much time on my hands lately…Actually, since I have been coughing and miserable, I decided to rethink my Scottie crochet.  The other piece that I showed previously will be framed and not used as a curtain. However,  I looked through my patterns and found another “vintage” pattern my Scottie friend, Kim, had sent me. As I looked at the pattern, I thought it would be just perfect to use as a valance.

Yesterday afternoon, I pulled out the crochet hooks and cotton and began my plan!

The pattern I am using is called “Scotties and Sealies”, as in Scotties and Sealyhams. As far as I can remember, Sealyhams have “droopy” ears as opposed to “bat ears” like Scotties, but whatever, I love this pattern. It is pretty easy……


Now, I am trying to figure exactly how I am going to use these.  The curtains we currently have are frumpy and ugly and I am thoroughly tired of them.  It is going to take some time to finish these, so I have plenty of time to plan my strategy!  I am going to repeat this pattern of two pups facing one another, twice, for each of the two front windows.  That should keep me occupied for a while.

Oh, and yes, I could have made any number of other patterns instead of the Scotties, but I really liked this pattern so much and it is the perfect size (length) for a valance.