Thursday, November 28, 2013

Memories of my Childhood

I woke up thinking of Thanksgivings and holidays past.  I'm thankful for memories from my childhood.  It was a good one.

Every holiday was spent back home in West Virginia at my Granny and Grandpa's.  We usually arrived very late in the night or early in the morning as you would see it.  Mom would have us change into our jammies sometime during the drive.  Back then there were no seatbelts in cars so the three of us would snuggle up together on the back seat.

It was a long drive which took about ten hours.  There were no super highways.  It was just rural winding roads.  My sister and brother always got car sick.  Dad always had the radio on.  He and mom would sing if there was a channel playing music.  That was a treat because during the spring and summer trips it was always tuned to a baseball channel.  AM radio had a lot of static and you missed a lot of what the announcer was saying.

I remember turning off Route 20 and starting up the road which would take us back to Granny's house.  The name of the road has changed from time to time but has always been referred to as River Ridge.  In reading land patents from the 1700-1800s it was called the River's Ridge because that part of the mountain overlooked the river.  Now there is so much tree growth you can't see the river below.

We'd pass Carlean Keaton's house and make the first turn.  From there it was about an eighth of a mile before we got to the kiss your arse turn.  Mom always started crying when we got there.  Thank God daddy drove at night so we kids couldn't see the turn or how far it was down over the side of the road!  This was rural living at it's best.  There were no guard rails to keep you from going over.  So we made it past the turn and kept going to the next turn.  In my mind I can see each and every one.  There were large potholes in the road.  No gravel to fill them in either.  Dad did the best he could to miss the holes.  It was five miles from the main road back to the house.

When we finally arrived at Granny and Grandpa's someone would come out to carry us into the house.  We'd be put to bed underneath a pile of quilts hand made by Granny or passed down from another family member.  I'd lay awake listening to the voices in the front room trying to make out the words they were saying.  Eventually falling asleep in absolute peace that was our childhood.

We'd wake up to mommy calling us to wake up and coming to get us out of the big bed.  She'd take us outside to the outhouse so we could go potty.  If we had to potty in the middle of the night we would use a chamber pot which would be dumped out in the morning.  Nighttime was the coldest for an outhouse run!

Breakfast was set out on a long farm table.  There were two chairs.  One at each end, for Granny and Grandpa.  Everyone else sat on the benches.  Biscuits and gravy, eggs and bacon, ham and beans plus cornbread.  If you didn't find something you liked to eat at that table you went hungry.  There was two kinds of milk; sweet milk for us kids and buttermilk for everyone else.  Mom and dad loved cornbread stuffed into their buttermilk.  Everything at the table except for the coffee was grown, harvested and prepared by the family.

After breakfast Grandpa would get out his can of Prince Albert tobacco and roll a cigarette.  I remember watching him roll the paper just so, then sprinkle out tobacco onto the paper, roll it up after licking the edges of the paper and pinch the ends.  It smelled so good.

{Time for a break to the story.  Hubs came in to say Elsa's pups have been born.  I missed it all and there's seven of them!!}



Saturday, November 23, 2013

Planning for Christmas

Anyone who knows me knows that I absolutely hate having to shop at the mall especially around holidays.  Panic sets in as soon as I get inside.  Most of the time I shop online.  Today I shopped for the granddaughters.  I scored an extra 15% discount and earned 6% by using the Ebates link to the store's website.  Hubs asked how much I spent and I told him I saved almost $300.  He said that doesn't tell me what you spent.  No, it didn't.  haha

Last year I made gifts.  Specifically, socks.  They took a lot of time to knit.  I'm still looking for a knitting pattern for a cowl / shawl / shoulder wrap.  I'd like one for myself.  I found one that I absolutely loved.  It was perfect only the designer wasn't keen on sharing the design.  Understood.  Will continue searching.  Dagnabit.

Hubs and his two brothers went pheasant hunting this morning.  The dogs did their jobs and worked well together.  The hunters brought home birds.  It was a good morning.

We have a field trial at the beagle club tomorrow morning.  I bought ten frozen turkeys on Friday to pass out to the owners whose dogs place at the trial.  We're supposed to get snow overnight.  NO!  I know this is winter but I hate snow.  I hate cold weather.  I don't know how we're supposed to find rabbits for the dogs to track.  They'll be hunkered down.

We almost have everything ready for Elsa to whelp her pups.  We put up insulating board in the whelping room.  Yesterday, I scrubbed the walls and door with a little soap and bleach and a whole lot of elbow grease.  The floors get scrubbed down daily.  Now to clean up the heat lamp and tray to put inside the whelping box after the pups are born.  This system has worked well for us.  When pups are cold they will move to the tray and when too warm will move off.  The radiant floor system is already turned on and the room is warm.  I'm just hoping she doesn't whelp Thanksgiving day.  I was planning to cook for me and Phil.  I know R&J will be at her mom's.  I invited J in case he won't be eating dinner with the girls.  The last couple of years we've had dinner at Bob Evans.  It was nice but kind of sad at the same time that we weren't together with family for the day.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Christmas is Coming

I'm sitting in the lounge at dance school waiting on my granddaughter.

 The teacher has Oh Holy Night playing.  The girls are dancing to it.  It's one of my favorite songs.  I'm having a hard time not singing along!


New Kennel Website

We received feedback today that our old website for our kennel was difficult to navigate.  I agreed.  I'd been unhappy with the Lycos - Tripod website for a long, long time.  I decided to take the initiative to create a new website.  I'm debuting it here:  https://sites.google.com/site/riverridgegsp

Let me know what you think.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Knitting

I need a new knitting project.  I have lots of yarn in all colors and thicknesses from lace weight to bulky.  I just need something to DO with it.  I've looked at all sorts of knitting patterns and can't decide on anything.  Bummer because I really need a project to work on.  Something to take with me while I'm waiting during dance class.  Suggestions would be appreciated!