Sunday, December 2, 2007

O Christmas Tree, Friends and Village Update

Working very hard at being in the Christmas mood. This morning was "hanging of the greens" at church, but I was ushering so really did not get to see much of what went on, other than the lighting of the tree, wreaths and garland. This this afternoon, on probably the coldest afternoon we have had so far, we went to a Christmas Tree farm about 8-10 miles from our house to pick and cut our tree. I think the temp was around freezing with a 20 mile an hour wind. BRRRR!!! Here is a photo of the tree farm.

The temp being what it was did not take me long to find a tree. Not the best we have ever had. We have been going to this place for several years. Had been reading in the newspaper that 6-7 foot trees were going to be in short supply this year. There had been a couple of years that they lost trees due to disease, drought and hot weather. We could tell they were a little short in that size. Here is a picture of the one that we picked out before the chain saw hit it.

Here the tree is in the corner of our dining room. Waiting for Morris to put the lights on and then I put the ornaments, etc. on it. Over the years I have collected ornaments from various places we have visited. Also, I am a Hallmark ornament collector. I have one small tote full of nothing but Mickey Mouse ornaments. If I wanted to be really ambitious I could make one tree with nothing but Mickey Mouse. I bet I don't even put half of the armaments that I have on the tree. Probably could do several themed trees. They look nice and I would enjoy them, but the problem is all the time it takes to put them up for a couple of weeks and then the time to take them down and box everything up again. I just sometimes rotate the ornaments that I put on the tree.

I have several Christmas cross stitch pieces to get out and we have an icicle and snowflake arrangement that we hang in the front picture window. Will have more pictures when everything gets done.

Yesterday I had the most wonderful day. I spent it with 5 of my long time friends from college in a neighboring city. We have been attempting to have little mini-reunions over the last couple of years. Of those that we have been trying to get together, at least 2 were missing. One met with us last time, and the other has not made it yet, but we expect her to sometime soon. We all lived together in a scholarship house of 64 at Kansas State more years ago than any of us want to admit. Basically, the group us were together from 2 -4 years. One left after 2 years to finish up her nursing degree at another university.

Of the 6 of us, 4 are retired and 2 of them have gone back to work. One does long-term substitute teaching and the other one does contract work for a consulting firm that works for her former employer. One of the other recent retirees is planning to babysit her new grandson and then there is me. You all know what I do-------CROSS STITCH!!!!!!!!! The two that are still working are an elementary school principal and an assistant US Attorney. It was so great to spend time with everyone. We were never at a lose for words.

The reason we picked this date and city was they were having an Old Fashioned Christmas parade where all the entrants had be horses and horse drawn wagons and such. Nothing motorized. It lasted about an hour with 80 entrants. It was lots of fun. I did not get any pictures because it was raining and we found a place to watch the parade from inside. After walking around the downtown area before the parade, we found a little restaurant/coffee shop to stop in. Found a little counter-type area at the front that looked out on the parade route so we just pulled up chairs and our cappuccinos and lattes and watched the parade. That was only the beginning of our restaurant tour. After the parade was over, stopped in a shop that someone needed to pick a Christmas present in and dropped it and our rain gear by the car and went to a small art show in the local arts center. Right across the street from the arts center was a little restaurant with made to order wraps, salads and Philly Sandwiches. So guess where we had lunch. We were waiting on a call from one person. She called as we were starting lunch and she was on her way to meet us. We waited on her, which was not a problem. Gave us more time to visit. Then we talked some more while she ate her lunch when she got there. After about 2 hours for lunch, we moved on to a little ice cream shop that makes their ice cream right there with many, many flavors. Let's see, I think we had Snickers, Kansas Twister, Cappuccino Chip. Those are the ones that I can remember.

Again, we had lots of time to talk. We spent another hour there. One had to go rescue her husband that was watching the new grandson, so we took her to her car. We went into our hostess's home and looked at her pictures of her recent trip to Italy. One other of us had been to some of the same places and her and husband are taking some college students to that same area this spring. Then around 8 we decide we needed to do dinner, so off to an Italian restaurant close by. Time to eat again. We sort of blamed all the eating on to one of the gals because when we lived in the scholarship house she was kitchen manager at least one semester. Don't you like our logic.

Way too soon it was time to say good bye, but with big plans to meet again. Plans were made to meet again in early summer to attend "Symphony in the Flint Hills". It is an event that has been held twice now and sold out where the Kansas City Symphony Orchestra does an open air concert in the wide open spaces of the Kansas Flint Hills. In 2008, it will be in the county where one of the group lives. From what we all have heard it is an event not to be missed. I did look up last night after I got home to see what the date is. It is to be held June 14, 2008, so I will be letting everyone know. I know everyone is looking forward to us getting together again. We had such a great time getting caught up with everyone and say "do you remember this person or when we did this?", which was usually followed with a great deal of laughter. When we lived together we always had a great time and our time together yesterday was no different.

Since I was gone all day yesterday, there has not been a great deal of stitching progress done on any one thing. I have stitched on the Sunflower Seed design model, my Giving Sisters from Notforgotten Farms and I did start Block 3 of Village of Hawk Run Hollow. I tried to wait until Friday night or December 1st, but just could not do that. When I realized I probably would not get much stitching done on the lst because of going to the reunion, I started some on the border on Thursday night. Below is my progress as of an hour or so ago. It is a little difficult to see. I was working all on one side and I also did not press it very good from where I had it rolled on the outside edge when I was working on the other blocks. Not much planned for the coming week. Need to spend time decorating my tree and the rest of the house. There still is Christmas shopping to do. Also, this morning the filling in my tooth that was going to be repaired in a couple of weeks fell out. So will need to call the dentist tomorrow. They may need to work me in sooner. In talking to my niece about our family Christmas, I ended up volunteering to bring noodles and mashed potatoes for our dinner. That means I need to make more noodles. Morris wants me to make sugar cookies for his barber. They are his favorite. Now I have listed several things that I can do this week. Of course, there will always be too much cross stitch that needs to be done. Friday night is one of the few Christmas dinner that we attend. That should be fun.

Oh, and I am still trying to get caught up on the blog reading. I have been averaging almost 25 read per day out of my Google reader and I cannot get caught up. Many of you are getting comments on blogs that are several day old. Hope you don't mind. That does not even include the blogs that I just have bookmarked and are not in my Google Reader. Man you people are busy, busy.

Well, it is off to finish up a couple of things and then off to bed. I try to keep my night owlness under control. Sometimes I think I could stay up most of the night and then sleep during the day, but that does work very well to interact with people that aren't night owls. LOL!!


Dr. Bill ;-) said...

It has been very interesting to have a Google Alert for Blogs on "Kansas Flint Hills!"
Yours came up today!
We have a 22 county Flint Hills Tourism Coalition, Inc. promoting visits to the Kansas Flint Hills – this is the website:
Our web site is to promote the Kansas Flint Hills; and we were so happy to be in the 22 page color photo spread in National Geographic's April Issue on the Kansas Flint Hills, as a distinctive landscape.

We would appreciate a link from your site, to ours, if you are willing to do so. THANKS!
Best wishes!

Bill ;-)

Personal Blog:

Michelle said...

Kathy, I can't wait to see your tree decorated. Mine is done as of yesterday. The flamingo ornament is out of the Just Cross Stitch 10th Anniversary ornament book. I can't remember what year in the regular magazine ornament issue.. maybe 2003 or 2004? Being the self-taught stitcher that I am, I've yet to master the couch stitch. There was supposed to be a wreath around the flamingo's neck, I improvised. Have fun :) Michelle

Kajsa said...

It sounds like you gals had the nicest time!

Your start on Block 3 looks great!

Marie-P said...

Seeing as I do not decorate a tree for my house in CT, I am anxious to get to VT to tackle the task. Look forward to pic of the decorated tree.
You outing with friends was obviously wonderful. It is great that you make the effort to keep in touch.
Oh my, your VoHRH #3 looks good. Do you think we will meet the 1/1/08 deadline????
I literally was up all night (college junk)...slept from Noon-4pm and am on a roll now. :) Such a night owl~~~