Monday Gatherings

The first two weeks of this month I had to cancel my "Monday gathering of the lil artists'.
John and I said 'good bye' to three special friends. We mourned with their families and friends and remembered the goodness of each.
We were able to reconnect with old friends and relatives and enjoyed hosting many of them in our home.
Last week the kids had a holiday from school so were able to come from 10 am-2 pm. We usually meet right after school until dinner time.

The kids are so comfortable in our home and we love that. It is so nice to have young voices and
interesting topics of discussion. Yes Bethany Sarah Brianna and Ryan it takes us back to when you were running around and bringing all your friends home. It was a special time in our lives.
The girls are here making their own lunch......it always takes more than two to do any job.
The girls decided on grilled cheese sandwhiches and the boys in the background opted for peanut butter and jelly! They all have to learn to cook and prepare lunches when we have them here.
Some never get the opportunity at home.

We spent the day making special treats for ourselves! Jody is 'cooking' her vanilla lip balm mixture. We poured them into tiny mini plastic eggs and they were perfect sizes.

We also made bath salts. It was an easy...albeit.......messy project but very satisfying when all was said and done.

The girls mixed their own colors with food coloring and their own scents with essential oils.

Interesting colors galore!!
We have such a wonderful time together. Some of the girls come and visit me during the week and some sunday afternoons several come and help me set up the dining room for that the next day. They all participate in clean up!! They rotate bringing snacks.
Recipes for your own gifts!!
1 tablespoon petroleum jelly
1 tablespoon aloe vera gel
1 1/2 tsp coconut oil
1/2 tsp vanilla ( or you may use 1 drop essential oil of your choice)
Heat ingredients together.. mix well and pour into small containers with lids.. let set completely before putting lids on.
it mixes very readily and takes about two minutes is all. you have to mix it and pour quickly and remix with each pour or the vanilla separates out.
the girls all used up their lip balm by this week!!!
2 cups epsom salts
1 cup sea salt (fine or coarse -your preference)
1 tsp glycerin
1-2 drops of essential oil.. or more to your liking
1-2 drops of food coloring.. or more if you like brighter colors
pour all ingredients into bowl and mix loosely pour onto lined cookies sheets or something with sides. Mix all ingredients by hand until very well blended.. spread out as thinly as possible and let dry.....it takes several hours......in high humidity may take up to six hours to completely dry.
pour into jars or plastic containers with lids. These make nice gifts. Food coloring.. no matter how dark.. will lightly tint the bath water... but will not stain the tub or THE SKIN.


One World One Heart GiveAway was started by the amazing Linda "oceandreamer" Swifka of whimsical bohemian. IT IS A WORLDWIDE GIVEAWAY!
The premise is to have a chance to meet artists and visit blogs from all over the world and have a change to win a gift or two along the way.
There are currently well over 500 participating artists. Just click on the link at the right to go to the official site. There you will find the directions for joining and the list of all the participants.

My giveaway includes:

1). Two drawings for a handmade journal by me.
The front and back covers are edged in ribbon and/or lace. The front cover is collaged with a mixture of random 'doodads' and 'whatevers'.
A multitude of colored ribbons flow from the spine. The ends are embellished with doodads.

The pages are made with a mixture of water colored papers and other textured papers
with random ribbon embellishments.

2). Two names will also be drawn to receive a small box of vintage chenille garlands in green and red. I scored these at a small community wide garage sale for pennies!!
Don't forget to include a way for me to track back to your blog or to get a hold of you in case you are a winner.
The worldwide drawings will be held on FEB 12th!!


WELCOME 2009!!!

Dear Friends and Family
I have been missing in action for several months now and have missed you all. I want to send warm wishes for the NEW YEAR and the best ever!

The last few months have seen us travelling to be with family and enjoying ourselves to the max.
Our children and grandchildren mean everything to us.
We are so thankful we can spend this quality time together.

Here I am celebrating another birthday with three of our grand daughters; lauryn, sydne and Nai'a and her mommy Lehua. ----Tovi and Nakiah mommy and daddy we miss you and love you so much!!

John and I taking a moment..............I hate my picture being taken but promised John to put more of ME out there.

Myself with daughter Bethany, lauryn in the corner, and sydne. Their gift to me for my bd was a ticket to the Nutcracker!! It was a beautiful production. It was just that more enjoyable with the two of YOU. Thank You for such a special birthday. We hope to make it an annual event with more granddaughters joining us every year.

When we arrived at Ryan and Lehua's home they asked if we saw Nai'a's snowman out front.
"Oh no we didn't. How could we miss that?"
Mr snowman is about three inches tall and the most adorable little snow man! His raisin eyes are so sweet.

Here's Nai'a with her little guy. She had to carry it everywhere when she was outdoors. The guys took her sledding and he came along only to meet his demise along the way.
This is our newest granddaughter and the biggest event of 2008! Rylee Joy was born in November to Bethany and Bryce. She is so precious. What a great family.

Here she is with her big sisters sydne elise and lauryn elliott!

We spent time playing and baking and just being together. We missed our family in New York and all decided that will be the last time we spend the holidays without all of us being together.
I hope all of you have wonderful memories that you will be able to share in the future and that the New Year finds you all well.