The View From my Window

January 8, 2019 —

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It’s that time of day when the sun lights up the hills across the way. In the summertime the fields just below those hills utterly glow golden with color when the sun sets. Just gorgeous… a fitting end to another good day.

I worked on the train quilt border today, putting Prairie Points together. The last quilt sold very quickly and I had some Prairie Points left over so finished sewing the remaining pieces into one very long chain. I’ll trim up the panel and add a border of black to frame it and then apply the Prairie Points.

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This is the chain of Prairie Points ready to be attached to the panel’s edges.

Tomorrow morning will be busy as I join other volunteers to take down the Christmas decorations at the Tehachapi Depot Railroad Museum and store them away until November. I doubt I’ll get much sewing done. I have two books due back at the library tomorrow. I’ve already renewed them once, but find it hard to get through them. They’re both on caregiving for dementia patients. My daughter-in-law’s mother has Alzheimer’s and sadly, it’s progressing incredibly fast. So tragic–I graduated from high school with JM–just a twist of fate that our kids met and fell in love.

Progress is being seen on the new Super WalMart. And, once again we’re being told that a new shopping center has been approved for the corner of southwest corner of Red Apple and Tucker Rd./202. It’s called Red Apple Pavilion and the anchor stores will be a Panda Express and Carl’s Jr. restaurants. There will be 9 smaller pads for shops. This is in addition to the pads that are set for the area adjacent to the Super Walmart. This  is a good thing for the community, providing more jobs and more revenue.

Not much more to report, so will close this with blessings to all. Be safe, be happy, and please remember to tell those you love that you love them. I’ve been logging our train traffic fairly consistently so will add a couple of pages for the friends who like to see this information.

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“Stackers” is a nickname for the containers that sit in what’s called well cars. They have shallow bases that the containers are locked into. You’ll see these containers stacked unbelievably high on freighters that cross the oceans on a regular basis. When the well cars are empty, they’re hauled back to the starting point in one long train, and it’s called a “Bare table” because the cars are, well, “Bare”.

Trailers are semi-truck trailers that are tied down to a flat car. A nickname for this type of car is “TOFC” or Trailer On Flat Car.

I wasn’t up when the first two trains came through the valley. Robert gave me the road names and the direction they were moving and that’s all. Better than nothing, and there are several other people who log trains like we do, so we are assured to have full capture of all the necessary information.

 

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The View From My Window

January 6, 2019 — The cloud cover is hiding the tops of the mountains across the way, but I feel sure there’s snow on the peaks as it rained last night. Cold and a bit dreary out this morning, but it IS winter, so this is expected. The rainfall has been slow and gentle, which is good because of the burned areas in the county.

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I’ve been sewing Colostomy covers for the past couple of days. A friend came to me a while back with a request to sew a cover for them. A pattern was downloaded from the Internet and away I went, sewing. I was amazed at the price being charged for these very simple items.  Thus evolved the idea of making covers for people who can’t afford to purchase them elsewhere. I made up some business cards and sample covers for the friend’s doctor. The doctor can show the patient the covers and give them my card. The patient can then contact me directly and we can customize a cover for them. Just another way of giving back for all that I receive.

Beyond that sewing project, I finished a blouse for my younger sister and have a quilt set up to put together for the Tehachapi Depot Railroad Museum’s gift shop (http://www.tehachapidepot.com).

Not much else to report so will close with blessings to all. Be safe, be happy and remember to tell those you love that you love them.

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December 25, 2018

This photo was taken a number of years ago, but we put it up again this year. The card is one I created with marbles and rubber stamp ink refills. A really fun technique that creates a unique greeting card background.

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I worked a bit on my sister’s blouse and have it sewn together except for the front facing, collar and hemming. I’m waiting on the button snaps that will go down the front of the blouse. I sure hope it fits her and she likes the color.

I have my next quilt pattern picked out and can’t wait to begin working on it. But I want to finish my sister’s blouse first.

We’ve had gentle rain all day today, with lots of fog and low-level clouds. It’s stopped for now, but is very cold this evening.

A thoroughly enjoyable day was had by all today. Heard from the younger son and the older son dropped in to spend a bit of time working on his trailer.

Time to go be with my hubby … we enjoy sitting together in the evening to either watch t.v. or read. We are blessed. May you and your loved ones be blessed this Christmas. Remember those who have lost loved ones and are spending their first Christmas without them. It’s a painful time for many. Be safe if you’re out traveling on the roads…

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Wednesday, December 19, 2018

I was up late again last night, finishing the binding on my first quilt for the Sacramento Mercy Hospital. It will go in the mail today. I’m very pleased with it and glad I decided to do a bit more quilting before adding the binding. It has a good feel to it and the colors are just perfect. I was going to use a solid black binding and changed my mind to a black with white polka dot fabric. It really sets everything off, especially since the backing is the opposite color scheme, white with black polka dots.

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It’s a simple Nine-Patch pattern, but works really well when the center square remains the same color. I really love red, black and white. No matter what pattern you use with these three colors, the quilt is always strikingly beautiful.

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I have a long list of things yet to do today so will close with blessings to all. Be safe, be happy, and please remember to tell those you love that you love them.

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Sunday, December 16, 2018

Postage is unbelievably high these days, and it really hits home at Christmas when you think of sending a card to everyone you know. At $.50 per card, it gets very pricey, very quickly. I’ve received several Christmas letters in lieu of an actual card, and have even received e-mail greetings. Meanwhile, I’m still folding tiles of paper and making medallions for this year’s Christmas card. This is one of the medallions, mounted on a card base that was left over from a years-ago Christmas. I don’t even know what year, but it kind of works, so I’m using it.

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The bake sale at the Depot is done for this year. Whew! We did very good this year. In fact, on the first Saturday this year we made more money than all three of last year’s Saturday’s combined. There are still a few goodies left for people to purchase–no one is manning the table, it’s strictly by the honor system, but that’s o.k. People have been very generous this year.

Santa was late both yesterday and the Saturday before, so we’ve decided we need to change the starting time to a half hour later for next year. We’re hoping that’ll enable him to be on time.

The line of people waiting for Santa got very long, and the kids were getting restless, so at one point, I decided I would pass out cookies to the kids in line, just to keep them happy until Santa arrived. It worked like a charm… I think it impressed the parents that we would do something like that.

The Saturday before, we had a very tiny baby in line — she was VERY unhappy for most of the wait. I thought perhaps a bit of sugar might quell her crying so I went up to the mother and asked her if she would like to give her baby a bit of candy cane. The mother brightened up and quickly agreed. I went to the front of the line, got a candy cane and headed back to the mother and still-crying baby. I happened to be wearing my Christmas light necklace and when the baby saw the lights flickering, she immediately stopped crying. By the time the mother got the wrapper off the candy, I had the necklace off and was showing it to the baby. All crying stopped … nice! About two minutes later, Santa arrived and the show was on.

People commented as they left, saying they had a really enjoyable time and appreciated all the work that went into making such a wonderful event for the public. I thanked them and said we would see them again next Christmas. Many of them said, “We’ll be here!” I was tired at the end of the day, but very satisfied at having such a successful event.

Be safe, be happy, and please remember to tell those you love that you love them.

 

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Wednesday, December 5, 2018

The highs and lows of life keep my mind moving through memories of the past. My friend Mage posts photos of all sorts of antique Christmas balls jumbled in a box. It reminds me of Christmas trees that we had when I was a child. I have one memory of a Christmas tree at my paternal grandparent’s home. It had paper cones of popcorn hung on the tree and lights that clipped to the branches. My grandmother also had a spice gumdrop tree that we kids dearly loved, but we knew to not touch it without asking first. Whenever I see those clear plastic gumdrop trees in catalogs I am tempted to buy one, just to bring that same memory to my grandchildren.

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The low comes when I think of the latest loss of a friend who passed away three days ago. She and her husband were our neighbors at our winter place in Arizona. She had COPD and had been in declining health for some time. I will miss her; she was a wonderful person and I feel blessed to have known her for the short time I did.

Speaking of Arizona, we’ve taken our winter home off the market and will continue to rent it out during the winter season. We may go over in April of next year, after our renters leave, and spend a few weeks, just to get away. We shall see…

Be safe, be grateful, and be sure to tell those you love that you love them. There will come a time for each of us to say goodbye to our loved ones and friends. Don’t let an opportunity pass you by to let others know you care.

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Tuesday, December 4, 2018

This is the Christmas tree we used at our Arizona home. Our place is small and we really didn’t have room for anything much bigger than this. Now that I look at it, I wonder where it is as we’ve removed all of our personal effects from the place. Hmmmm…

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Notwithstanding that I’m seeing Christmas all over the place outside my front door, and I’ve worked a Christmas bake sale this past weekend (both Saturday and Sunday), I’m finding it difficult to get into the mood for Christmas. We have family coming up to visit at the end of the month so I do need to get on the stick and get shopping. Last year I wimped out and gave money. I don’t think the kids minded at all, but it sure made me feel bad. The grandkids are of the age where they are asking for big buck items and we don’t have a big buck budget. I’ll have to call the parents and quiz them about what to get the kids (besides something green with a president’s face on it).

I debated these past couple of weeks about signing up for dental insurance. I have a permanent bridge that I think needs to be replaced, and some oral surgery that is needed. Best to just bite the bullet and get the insurance–not that I didn’t want the coverage, but by getting the coverage I had to commit to getting myself into the dentist’s chair and accepting the pain that’s to come. :/ And I think of the money I tossed down the drain when I had root canals done on the teeth under that bridge. Never did feel right and it’s now sensitive to sweet things, which shouldn’t be happening if they did the job right back then. <sigh> So, I went to my e-mail trash folder tonight and pulled out the message about signing up for dental insurance. We have great vision insurance so why no go for the gold (no pun intended) and get the teeth covered as well.

We do have Christmas lights up — I did the back of the house and Robert did the front. I also put lights on the trellis that’s atop my front planter box. I used two strings of C7 lights and only one string is lit. The neighbor came over and diagnosed a blown fuse and said he’d come over and troubleshoot them tomorrow afternoon. I told him I felt sure I had fuses around here somewhere. He’s going to fix my lights! Love having neighbors like that!

I’ve been cutting tea bag folding tiles for our Christmas cards and I keep thinking I have some really great train photos that I can put on a flash drive, take into Walgreen’s and get cards made up with our signatures on them… easy-peasy. My hands won’t be hurting and it can’t cost that much for professionally printed cards. A cop-out for sure, but truly an attractive idea.

May you be blessed, be safe, and be at peace. Be sure to tell those you love that you love them, and be kind to others. This is a stressful time of year and many people are moving through the holiday for the first time without their loved ones. That has to be hard…

 

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