Thursday, October 28, 2010

Irish folklore

This is a story I read online, just thought I would share:

Why Carve Pumpkins?

The story of the Jack o'Lantern comes from Irish folklore.
Jack was a crafty farmer who tricked the Devil into climbing a tall tree. When the Devil reached the highest branch, Jack carved a large cross in the trunk, making it impossible for the Devil to climb down. In exchange for help getting out of the tree, the Devil promised never to tempt Jack with evil again. When Jack died, he was turned away from Heaven for his sins and turned away from Hell because of his trickery. Condemned to wander the earth without rest, Jack carved out one of his turnips, took an ember from the devil, and used it for a lantern to light his way. He became known as "Jack of the Lantern."

Monday, October 25, 2010

Dealing with Sorrow

This has helped me in my time of sorrow and hope it can help others.


"You cannot prevent the birds of sorrow from flying over your head,
but you can prevent them from building nests in your hair".
-- Old Chinese Proverb
Your grieving heart...

When your grief is new and raw, and overwhelmingly painful and scary, it is important that you not mess with it.
You may tell yourself: "This is just too much to bear! I can't stand it!"
You must experience the full impact of the loss.
Let it wash over your soul at will.
Follow it, cry when you want, yell at God, scream into your pillow.
Don't suppress new grief, or avoid it, or try to change it.
It's your grief! Claim it.
Experience it.
Surrender to your grief.
Don't let anyone take away your right to it.
Death makes people uncomfortable. They fear it. They understand why you are bereaved, but they have unrealistic expectations as to how you should grieve, and for how long.
They are uncomfortable with your grief and want it to go away as soon as possible. That's why they attempt to comfort you and give you advice and encourage you to "get over it" and "get on with your life" as soon as possible. Their discomfort and awkwardness with your situation can lead to some pretty severe "foot-in-mouth" disease.
They may even make some incredibly stupid and insensitive remarks like:
"Thank God you can have more children" (Like it's a pet turtle that died)
"She would want you to go on" (How do you know?)
"I understand how you feel" (You don't have a clue how I feel)
"God needed another angel" (Not as much as I needed him)

They mean well, but are acting out of fear and showing a profound ignorance of how a healthy grief process works.
Just try to forgive these souls, and spend as little time with them as possible. Instead, surround yourself with true, stalwart friends, who will silently stand witness to your grief, and not attempt to manipulate it.

Dealing with sorrow...

Trust the grief.
You will have your own unique way of expressing and experiencing grief. As long as it is changing, and moving, and "fluid", it is normal grieving.
Grief is not orderly and predictable.
You may reach a period of relative calm, and a break from the tears. "What a relief" you'll think, "Maybe I'm finally reaching the stage of acceptance". And then, WHAMO! Brought to your knees again by intense grief. And you'll wonder if you are making any progress at all. You are.
It really will come to an end. In it's own time. You will come back to life with loving remembrance in your heart, ready to embrace life again.

The grief from the death of someone deeply loved cannot be mastered or conquered.
You can learn to live with your great loss.
And there will be healing and health and yes, even joy again.
But there can never be full "recovery" .
As the years go by, life has a way of dealing it's pain and challenges to everyone. And the longer we live, the greater the chances of being hit by a major grief.
And there is no easy way out or quick cure for it. Such is life.
Experience and express grief fully.
You will figure out how to function again,
How to go to work without breaking down in the middle of the day.
Don't try to repress your grief too soon.
Later it will be more difficult and complicated.

Rest & sleep
Diet & exercise
Cry
Deal with the spiritual crises of bereavement
Treat yourself gently

Finding comfort
Postponing decisions

Experts agree that the single most important factor in healing from a grievous loss is the support of other people. Even if you are a close-mouthed individual during normal times, it is most important that you ventilate your pain and grief with your loved ones.


Surround yourself with loved ones.

People who understand, and can accept you just where you are.

People who will just be there, listening to you express your grief will help.
There will also be times when you just want to be alone,that's okay. Although it is not healthy over the long haul to grieve alone.
Be selfish!
Ask for some help.
Some may want to help, but not know how. Tell them!
Ask them to bring you some dinner, or go to the movies with you or just let you talk and cry, and give you a hug.

Let them take care of you. (Especially if you are normally a strong, self-sufficient person.)

Tender, loving care, both from others, and from yourself.

Talk about your loss, your pain, your memories of your lost one.
Tell your story over and over; this is important.

Don't try to protect your family from your crushing sadness.
Don't try to put up a brave front, pretending that you are alright, when you're NOT.

Helping others helps you. Be honest and let them ventilate, too.
Be careful and sensitive to others in the family, as a death can tear a family apart if it is handled improperly.

Take the time to support others in the family who are grieving too, including the children.

"As great scientists have said and as all children know,
it is above all by the imagination that we achieve perception,
and compassion, and hope."
-- Ursula K. LeGu

Help The Kids Find Their Way

Kids are often the "forgotten mourners" in a household stricken by a tragic death.

Childrens, doesn't matter the age as needs are honestly overlooked in the emotional turmoil.
Many adults think children don't understand death, and therefore aren't affected deeply by it. Helping them to process their own grief in a healthy and successful way.

Grief is a normal and natural reaction to loss.
Grief is not a disease.
It is appropriate for children to be sad and experience pain.
DO NOT tell your child not to feel bad.
DO NOT tell him to stop crying.

Children deserve the same respect and kindness.
As a parent, you love your child, and don't want them to feel bad, this is something you cannot and should not prevent.
It's as important for children to feel the same painful emotions and experience grief in all it's stages, as for an adult.
"Feeling bad" is a normal reaction to a tragic loss, then you can see how it would be better for your child to feel bad (normal) about it.

Don't try to make children feel better by "keeping them busy".
All this will do is postpone or bury griefwork that needs to be done.
Children need very much to feel all the pain and sorrow that a grievous loss merits.
Listen to them.
Let them ventilate and cry all they want and need to.
Encourage a child to express his painful emotions and sadness freely.
Keeping it all inside and unexpressed prevents him from completing his mourning and can create serious emotional problems later in life.
As painful as it may be for you to watch, your child must learn how to cope with loss and tragedy. Don't rob him of this valuable learning experience.

DON'T LET THEM GRIEVE ALONE

Encourage them to tell stories.
Let them contribute ideas for the memorial service, and even take part in the ceremony if possible.
It makes them feel important and useful during this overwhelming time.
Let them see the adults cry and grieve so they will know that it is okay for them, too.
Children are not harmed by seeing their parents or other adults cry and lose a little control, It may upset them initially, but in the long run, it is healthy for them to see their elders react normally in times of grief.
Just reassure them later that no matter how sad you are, you will still love and take care of them.
Sharing your grief with your children can be an opportunity to create a connecting bridge to them.
HONESTY IS THE BEST POLICY
It is important that you answer all of a child's questions about the death honestly. You don't have to provide every detail of what happened.

The grieving process is a very personal and individual thing.
As we have said several times, there is no healthy way to shorten the process; there are no short cuts to the resolution of grief.
You must let it run it's course.
The end of grief does not mean that you forget your beloved, or cease to love them. When you experience a tragic loss, it breaks your heart.
Can you mend your broken heart? Yes.
Does this mean that you are dishonoring your loved one? No.
Will you ever forget them? No.
Will they always have a place in your heart? Yes.


7 Stages of Grief...
1. SHOCK & DENIAL-
2. PAIN & GUILT-
3. ANGER & BARGAINING
4. "DEPRESSION", REFLECTION, LONELINESS-
5. THE UPWARD TURN
6. RECONSTRUCTION & WORKING THROUGH-
7. ACCEPTANCE & HOPE-

You will start to look forward and actually plan things for the future. Eventually, you will be able to think about your lost loved one without pain; sadness, yes, but the wrenching pain will be gone. You will once again anticipate some good times to come, and yes, even find joy again in the experience of living.

It is NOT a time for being strong.... it is a time for patience and surrender.

Brighter days lie ahead. Keep going.

Sunday, October 24, 2010






4-inch lollipop sticks (toothpicks work as well too)

Melon ballerGranny Smith Apples (one apple makes about 8 mini apples)
Kraft caramels
Chopped Nuts,
sprinkles, coconut....
The list could go on, so use anything!Small paper candy cups (miniture cupcake cups)
*First, cut the lollipop sticks in half at an angle (the pointy end will go into the apple pieces easier).
With the melon baller, scoop little balls out of the apple.



Each ball should have a section of apple peel.
Push half of a lollipop stick into the peel of each ball.
Pat the apple pieces dry.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Busy busy busy

So we got started last night with our spooky version of this.
I got some lights (the web lights)on the front side.
Colby got the orange lights hung up on the back side of the house!
Still so much more to finish............
I need more hours in the day!
I got all the items for this.
Michelle picked me up something to make this so much easier!
Really hoping to get be all decorated by this weekend.
Up for 1 week, then it will be time to turn around and take down.
Maybe I can get everyone to hang up the
Xmas lights as we are taking down the Halloween lights?
Probably not!

Will try and get pictures as soon as things are all finished up!



Happy Birthday to my sis today!
And a late birhtday post for my step mom, Karen!

I love you both tons, just so you know!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Thursday, October 14, 2010

This recipe came from http://busyfriendsrecipeswap.blogspot.com/

I made this, this week and it was so good!!


Crock Pot Pizza Casserole

1 lb Ground beef
1.5 jar (14 oz) pizza sauce
1 jar (23 oz) spaghetti sauce
1 pkg (12 oz) noodles {I choose a Penne noodle}
4 oz Cheese, mozzarella
4 oz Cheese, cheddar
1 small can Mushrooms
1 small can sliced olives
1 Onion, diced
1 Green Pepper, diced
1 pkg PepperoniDirections
1. Brown hamburger and onion. Drain grease.
2. Cook Noodles while browning hamburger.
3. Add sauces to meat and onion mixture.
4. In crock pot add mushrooms, olives, and green pepper.
5. Spoon meat mixture into crock pot and mix all together.
6. Put in as much Pepperoni and cheese as you would like.Cook on Low for one hour, I wouldn't cook longer than two hours.

I do have to tell you when I made this, the sauce mixture did not go far - so I increased the amounts on this recipe. It is possible even with the increase it could still be a little dry, just use your best judgment on the sauce.
Additionally, I would imagine you could turn this into a half day crock pot recipe, with the hamburger being cooked in the crock pot. Overall, this was actually pretty yummy and I was sceptical!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Better & Homes Gardens

http://www.bhg.com/holidays/halloween/



Fall Mini Pumpkin Wreath




This fall wreath is such a fun way to use miniature pumpkins to decorate, and using them on a wreath will add a great Halloween touch to your home.
From the magazine, Holiday Celebrations




This is one of the easiest wreath you can make. Let's see how to do it!
Note: If you use fresh mini pumpkins they can begin to decay after a week or two. You might also make this wreath using artificial materials.
The artificial mini-pumpkins we used came with a beaded, sparkle coating on them which is pretty -- but probably not for outdoor display. You'll probably also find plain orange artificial mini-pumpkins or even other colors like white or green -- so it's your choice.



Supplies
Twig wreath form
Mini pumpkins to cover the form
Hot-glue gun
Floral Wire
Black Pipe Cleaner
Black ribbon (grosgrain, satin, or raffia)
Plastic Spiders
Instructions
Start with an 18-inch twig wreath. You'll want to find one that has a fairly flat top section, so there's enough surface for the glue to secure the pumpkins. This size wreath took 13 pumpkins, but when you buy your materials at a craft store, be sure to lay out pumpkins around the wreath to see how many will fit.
Once your arrangement is set, start gluing each pumpkin in place and let it dry. We're gluing ours on so each one touches the next, but at the top we left about a 6-inch space for our bow.
Little plastic spiders are a fun addition as well. Just dot the legs with a bit of hot glue and set down on one of the pumpkins for a spooky Halloween touch.
Finally, you'll need a bow and I've got a great simple technique for that. You'll need to find wired ribbon in a 2 or 3 inch width. The wire helps you arrange the bow and the streamers easily and will help too, if you keep the bow from year to year -- you can just fluff it out as needed.
Lay a 24" strip of ribbon down on the table. Now, take about a 36" piece and leave a 15 inch streamer. Begin to loop the ribbon from side to side, beginning with smaller loops, gradually making the loops wider. End up with another 15 inch streamer. Lay down a black pipe cleaner or a 12" length of floral wire. Now you can pick up the ends of the 24" strip and knot it securely around all of the loops and the wire. There's your bow!
Use the wire to attach the bow to the wreath, or if you wish you can hot glue it onto the front. I know you -- and your guests -- will enjoy seeing this wreath. Happy Halloween!
For the Front Entry: "Beware" Sign



Outfit your front door with a warning to all who enter. Start with a weathered board and sticks. Shape the sticks to form letters that spell "beware." Lay the twigs onto the board and hammer insulated staples (available at home centers) around the twigs to hold them in place. For the hanger, attach a piece of jute to the front of the board with nails.

For the Front Entry: Witches' Brooms
Designate a spot on your front porch as a witches' parking lot. Wrap twigs and grasses around wooden dowels and bind with rope. Hang a sign to warn those who may be tempted to park illegally. Our sign reads "Witch parking only! Violators will be toad!" Type your sign on the computer using fun fonts. Print the sign on iron-on transfer paper and iron it onto a painted artist's canvas.


For the Front Entry: Ghosts & Shadows
Adorn your front stoop with a tangle of lifeless branches and vines hung from porch rafters. Paint gourds white and add ghostly expressions with black paint. Suspend gourds from the rafters so they hang down among the vines. When darkness comes, the apparitions will be illuminated by shifting shadows, a scene guaranteed to frighten and chill.

Spider Party Pinata

Your little ones will go berserk over this bigger-than-life spider pinata!








Paper bowls are hidden in this
spider's paper fur to create a
space for Halloween treats.

What You Need:
Yogurt-size plastic lid
Sharp pencil
Ruler
String
Two 12-oz. or larger sturdy paper bowls
Tracing paper
Scissors
1 sheet of black poster board
Stapler
2 handfuls of wrapped candy or small plastic toys, such as plastic spider rings
Thick white crafts glue
Black crimped, shredded paper
Black crepe paper
Green and black crafting foam scraps, such as Fun Foam, for eyes and mouth

Instructions:


1. Download the free pattern for this project. (Downloading requires Adobe Acrobat software.)


2. Use a pencil to carefully poke two holes an inch apart in the center of the plastic lid. Thread the string end down one hole and back up the other hole. Knot the string end to the length of string just above the lid. Poke another hole in the center of one bowl and pull the other end of the string up through this hole. The lid will sit inside the bottom of the bowl and prevent the string end from coming loose when kids strike the pinata. Set this top half aside while you prepare the spider base.





Step 3.


3. Trace the leg pattern onto tracing paper and cut out. Trace around the pattern on poster board four times; then turn the pattern over and trace it four more times. Cut out the eight legs. Position each grouping of four legs on opposite sides of the second bowl. Staple each leg to the rim.






Step 4.


4. Fill the base bowl with candy and/or toys. Position the top bowl over the base bowl. Glue the rims of the bowls together.



Step 5.

5. Glue the shredded paper over the top and bottom of the spider. Cut 4-inch lengths of black crepe paper and glue them to the two joints on each leg.

6. Cut out eyes and a mouth. Glue them to the top of the spider. Hang the spider at striking height in an open space.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Halloween Ideas

http://www.bhg.com/holidays/halloween/

Here are what I would like to make!




Craft a Simple Candy-Corn
Door Decoration for Halloween



Make this easy Halloween door decoration out of plastic foam and felt (to simulate candy corn), then fill it with dried naturals and artificial crows.


What You Need:
10 x 15-inch piece of 1-inch-thick plastic foam
Serrated knife
Ruler
27 x 27-inch square of batting
Straight pins
Sewing threads to match felt colors
Sewing needle
Crafts felt: 27 x 27-inch square of orange, 7 x 10-inch piece of white, and 5 x 27-inch piece of yellow
Twig (We used Manzanita.)
Black spray paint
Florist's wire
3 small artificial crows
Dried naturals such as stems of millet, grasses, and dried Japanese lanterns
How to Make It:
Place the plastic foam flat on a cutting surface with the 10-inch ends at the top and bottom.
Cut out a triangle shape from the foam, leaving a 1-inch-wide "point" at the bottom. The triangle should measure 10 inches across the top, 1 inch across the bottom, and approximately 16 inches along each side.
Wrap the triangle with batting, neatly pinning it to the back.
Shape and trim away the excess batting until it smoothly fits the back of the triangle. Baste the batting edges together, removing the pins as you sew.
Cover the triangle with orange crafts felt in the same way. Using the 7x10-inch piece of white felt, add a 4-inch-tall band to the bottom of the triangle, wrapping the felt around the bottom edge.
Pin, trim, and sew the band in place. With the 5x27-inch piece of yellow felt, add a 5-inch-tall band to the top. Do not wrap the felt over the top edge.
Pin, trim, and sew the band in place. Spray the twig black; let dry. Secure the twig in the


Mummy Meatloaf









1-1/2 lbs. extra lean ground turkey or beef
1 small white onion, finely chopped
1 egg
1 cup skim milk
1 cup dry breadcrumbs
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/3 cup + 2 Tablespoons ketchup
2 Tablespoons brown sugar
8 ounces pappardelle pasta (or lasagna noodles, cut lengthwise in half with frilly edges removed)
1 3-ounce mozzarella ball, divided
2 pitted black or green olives
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a 9-inch round baking dish (I used a springform pan). Combine the meat, egg, onion, milk, breadcrumbs, salt, and pepper in a large bowl. Empty mixture onto baking dish and shape into a dome.
Mix together ketchup and brown sugar in a small bowl. Spread mixture evenly over meatloaf.
Bake meatloaf for 1 hour. Let meatloaf rest for 20 minutes.
While meatloaf rests, cook and drain pappardelle or lasagna noodles according to package directions.
If using a springform pan, remove outer piece before placing pasta on meatloaf. If using other type of pan, remove meatloaf from pan and transfer to serving plate.
Slice mozzarella ball in half. Layer pasta strands over meatloaf to look like mummy’s wrappings, adding mozzarella circles about halfway throught the process. Cut a small piece off the bottom of each olive and place, flat side down, in the middle of each mozzarella “eye.”
Serve and enjoy!









Yummy Mummy Cupcakes








The only thing you need to take off this dessert to enjoy is the wrapper.
To make them, follow these steps:
Start with frosted store-bought or homemade cupcakes.
Use a pastry bag with basket-weave tip to pipe on white frosting.
Pipe red frosting on for the mummy's eyes.
Make two dots with black frosting to make the pupils.























Monday, October 11, 2010

Halloween 2010


cheese finger food

Mozzarella string cheese
Green bell pepper
Cream cheese
Wearing plastic gloves or sandwich bags over your hands to keep the cheese as smudge-free as possible, use a paring knife (parents only) to cut each string in half and then carve a shallow area for a fingernail just below the rounded end of each half.Mark the joint right below the nail as well as the knuckle joint by carving out tiny horizontal wedges of cheese, as pictured.For the fingernails, slice a green bell pepper into 3/8-inch-wide strips. Set the strips skin side down on your work surface and trim the pulp so that it's about half as thick. Then cut the strips into ragged-topped nail shapes and stick them in place at the ends of the fingers with dabs of cream cheese.




apple bites


Ingredients

Apples

Slivered almonds

Instructions

Just quarter and core an apple, cut a wedge from the skin side of each quarter, then press slivered almonds in place for teeth.Tips:If you're not going to serve them right away, baste the apples with orange juice to keep them from browning.


carrot finger food

vegetable dip
4 long carrots
1 medium carrot
softened cream cheese
sliced-almond
baby carrots
To prepare them, just fill a serving bowl with your favorite vegetable dip. Wash and peel 4 long carrots for fingers and 1 medium carrot for a thumb.With a paring knife (a parent's job), cut a flat, shallow notch in the tip of each carrot. Then use a dab of dip or softened cream cheese to glue a sliced-almond fingernail atop each notch.Stick the fingers in the dip, as shown, and serve with plenty of peeled baby carrots for dipping.
Edible Eyeballs
Carrots Cream cheese
Pitted black olives
Instructions
Simply slice carrots into 1-inch-thick chunks, top each with a blob of cream cheese and one half of a pitted black olive, and serve.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Healing........

My mother in law, Kathy, gave me some writings. I've been reading through them.
I wanted to thank you Kathy, for being so thoughtful, loving and caring.

I love that people care. Care to help others. That they write and share. They help.
Theyare helping me, and my family.

I wanted to share some readings that I are helping me....


Be with the sadness and the pain when it comes, but don't dwell on it.
Accept it, but don't invite it.
Pain is an acceptable guest, but not a welcome long term visitor.


Crying has its own specialness. It is cleansing, a marvelous release.

BE WITH THE PAIN
Don't deny it or cover it or run away from it.
Be with it.
Hurt for awhile.
Although you may find yourself frightened by it,
be with your pain.
Fell it. Lean into it.
You will not find it bottomless.


And to OUR friends and family
this is for you, thank you all for loving us all.

My friends are still there:
neglected
rejected
while I gave all my
precious moments to you.
they're still here!
god bless them.
I want to thank everyone who has and is loving on me and my family. Thank you for talking, and even when you didn't know what to say, you were still there.
Thank you to those who have called, emailed, face booked and letting us know that you were there.
Thank you to those who asked how I was, or how my husband was, and my kids.
To our work friends:
Thank you for being there and taking the time to ask, how we are.
Thank you for keeping my/our spirits up.
Saying a "funny" when you knew I was having a hard day.
Everyday I/we feel loved. We thank you all.
WE KNOW WE ARE TRULY BLESSED.

Addison


We left and went on a little road/AKA much need vacation.
We enjoyed the sandy beaches...................
The weather was nice, too!
We loved talking and sharing about Addison.
And we found 2 sign's called Addison St & Addison Ave.
Ryan found the Ave one as we drove by, I didn't get a picture.
I will post more pictures from were are little road trip took us......................................

Monday, October 4, 2010

"You cannot live a perfect day without doing something for someone who will never be able to repay you." ~John Wooden

I know we will never be able to repay all the people who loved on us... but we will try! My husband reminded me of the movie Pay it Forward. We will pay it forward!

*******************************************

I would like to ask everyone to please pray for my dear friends, they are going to met with a specialist from Florida via internet at EIRMC today about their baby, she is 24 wks along. The baby doesn't have any or to little amniotic fluid.

Amniotic Fluid Abnormalities
In some pregnancies, there may be too little or too much amniotic fluid. Too little fluid is called oligohydramnios and too much is called polyhydramnios. Either condition can cause problems for mother and baby. Even with these conditions, though, most babies are born healthy!