Saturday, December 31, 2011

Top Posts and Pins of 2011

When I started this blog my intent was sort of a journal or diary per se.
I never dreamt that anyone would have been interested in my Apple Blossom Dreams.

So for the last post of 2011 I would like to give a GREAT BIG shout-out to all of you who followed, viewed and read about my projects, ramblings and dreams.
Your interest has truly brought me joy and friendship.

As a little celebration of 2011, I thought it might be fun to post my top posts and pins of 2011, as you all were the ones that made them so...

Top Five Posts:






And the top five pinned on Pinterest:

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Thank you all so much,
I am humbled and my heart is warmed!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

G'ma Spicy

I am Grandma Spicy
and not because of my spice organizing skills,
although I would like to share those skills with you,
here today, if you would be so kind as to placate me. :-)

The skills of the spice organizer:


A trip to IKEA for these.
(Have I ever mentioned that I LOVE IKEA???)
Then some pourin', a sortin' and label magic makin'...
then this:

But I was not so keen on the Mrs. Dash messing up the container alikeness mojo,
so then came this:

and Mrs. Dash (salt-free) was moved to cabinet #2 with nothing other than...salt:

The real story behind the G'ma Spicy nickname

Although it may have a little bit of a risqué tone to it,  it really isn't so. How did I come to be "G'ma Spicy", you may wonder? Well, it's a pretty short story. You see, we were playing "Apples to Apples" with a few members of the familia. It was my turn to be "the judge" and the adjective card I received to play was "Spicy" and I was to choose which of the following was the best fit with this card:
     1) Incense
     2) Darth Vader
     3) Denzel Washington
Well, naturally my selection was "Denzel Washington" (so spicy!) with a close second as "Darth Vader" (pretty spicy and I'm thinking of him in his earlier days...more specifically his Anakin days, not the heavy breathing later days.) To my surprise and dismay the holder of the "Incense" card was not happy about my choice, at all. She was certain she was playing the spiciest of all cards and this became the topic of many future fun-filled gifts/conversations/arguments which, incidently, were never settled and eventually dubbed me: G'ma Spicy.

Proud Spicy G'ma of 5 beautiful Spicy G'chillin's...
and one on the way.

Have a Spicy Day!
(Oh and BTW, I still LOVE the Spice Girls.)

Monday, December 26, 2011

"Fit" Daisy Blanket Ta Da!

It's nothing short of a miracle!!!
A little bit of springtime in the dead of winter. :-)

The ETA for this afghan was 2012 - and here it is delivered 5 days early!
On time and under budget (perhaps, I should go back to working in construction finance ;-) )

Really, it's only under budget because I used Red Heart yarn which I love due to its price point and it's early due to the fact that it's smaller than originally planned. (I could not face weaving in any more ends, but someday, once the pain of the ends is but a distant memory, I may attempt a matching pillow. The remaining yarn awaits the return to insanity in the stash bin.)

Pattern is the "Daisy Square" from this post at My Rose Valley.  
And the edge is one row of single crochet and one row of picot.

It will stay inside for the Winter:

But, may go outside in the Spring since it was made to match
 the front porch "rug" and daisy topiary:
I blogged about this afghan so many times
here, here, here...
I wonder if anyone is as happy as I am that it's finally over.
(At least until the possibility of a matching pillow comes to fruition.)

It also matches the cushion from this post and this post and as below:
Here it is with it's little friend, the rocking chair cushion.
Now, it's time to go back to work, at my place of employment, after five days of pure bliss.
Sure wish I could putter around the house for a living.

Happy Boxing Day with this box shaped afghan pattern. :-)

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Advent Calender Day 25

December 25th...
Merry Christmas Everyone!!!

The following gifts led up to the most fantastic Christmas gift I had ever received!
And the following is what they led up to:

I have always wanted a flagpole; they are all over Norway and many is the USA, as well. I thought if I could fly both flags it would represent so many of my thoughts and feelings. I was hoping this would be our first purchase once we paid off our mortgage and were 100% debt free in May of 2012. It would symbolize freedom; the freedom and opportunities that come from living in the USA and the countless opportunities that have been presented to us as Americans. One such opportunity is the opportunity to pay off our debts. We are so very fortunate and so very grateful to be able to do so for so many reasons, with a special "shout out" to our employers amongst so many other folks that love us and support our crazy ideas. 

To my surprise the NVO granted me the flag wish several months early.
Thank you, NVO, I love you!!!



What a wonderful month it has been and here's a recap of the 25 day activity advent:
1) Putting together a Snoopy puzzle.
2) Bookstore outing and watching "Charlie Brown Christmas".
3) Gun mug with visit to coffee and chocolate shop.
4) Mistletoe and peppermint hot chocolate sipping.
5) Watching "White Christmas" while scratching the NVO's back.
6) *Wrapping paper stars
7) The $1 challenge.
8)  *New Mexico "Luminorio" making
9) and 10) Dress up and take a waltz dance lesson.
11) Vegan Gingerbread Cookies and more puzzle time.
12) *Making paper snowflakes and watching "A Very Muppet Christmas".
13) Kissing under the mistletoe headband.
14) Roasting marshmallows inside the house to make S'mores.
15) Planning our Annual Valentine's Day ice fishing trip.
16) Snacking on mint chocolates and postponing snowshoeing to Christmas Eve to a time we could travel to snowier location.
17) Enjoying the "3D Atlas of the Tri-Canyons" and postponing snowshoeing to Christmas Eve to a snowier location.
18) Drinking Glogg and nibbling Christmas cookies while watching "A Christmas Story".
19) Created "Vision Boards" while watching an episode of"It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia" that refers to "Vision Boards".
20) Made cranberry and popcorn garland.
21) Played cards with the snowman deck.
22) Built a living room fort and decorated it with paper chains and all the "*" from above.
23) Worked out together at the gym, then had a burger and beer to celebrate the exercise
24) A reading of "'Twas the Night Before Christmas" translated into Norwegian with postponed snowshoeing from 16) and 17).
25) Flagpole with flags. :-)


Saturday, December 24, 2011

Advent Calendar Day 24

December 24th...

For today's advent celebration the NVO translated
"'Twas the Night Before Christmas" into Norwegian and read it to me.
It made me cry, it was so sweet!

We also rounded up some of the family and made up for
the advent days we missed snowshoeing:
I believe we have started a new Christmas Eve tradition.

Happy Christmas Eve!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Advent Calender Day 23

December 23rd...
Lille Julaften in Norsk

We celebrated this 23rd day of the advent at the....

We both had the day off work so this was a treat to be able to workout during the day
 when we pretty much had the place to ourselves.
People were definitely out and about, just not at the gym.
This is the NVO; he is a muscle man,
but you can't really detect that in this photo, but trust me. :-)

 Can you believe the amazing view from the eliptical machine?
But, it is cold out there and warm in the gym and even warmer at the...
Cotton Bottom
So we celebrated working out at the gym with a burger and beer at our favorite local joint. ;-)

Hope you are all enjoying the excitement in the air!!!