WHAT A DAY! Happy familys! (Grandma and Grandpa's gang)

Holiday decorations
----------------Matthew opening gift

Wendy and Amber at snack bar

Even Bunny got a new dog toy!

Matthew got a new TV!

Amber wanted a portable DVD Player
-------------------------------Darin got a TV and RC Helicopter

Sarah wanted Cash for a shopping spree!

Amber wanted the rest of her cash for a shopping spree.

Darin's excited opening his envelope.

Me- Looking at my present

My present - a necklace with Darin and Amber engraved on it!
How Beautiful!!!

Barlow's Present- Dog Tag Necklace -with Darin and Amber's picture engraved on it!!

My cousin Steve with Amber and Sarah behind him.

My Aunt Sally and Uncle Ed

Wendy, Mark, and Matthew and Sarah - family portrait

My little white tree.

My hubby- Barlow in Family room

Frank at the Buffet counter

Caroline, Frank, with Darin and Amber- Family portrait
Everyone ate their fill, munched on Pies and cakes, were thrilled with their presents. Wendy got me a beautiful shirt, pants and gloves, as well as a box of candy! We're spoiled that way. I also received a wonderful large picture frame with lots of windows to put our family pictures behind. Darin and Amber went together and bought Grandpa and Grandma a gift certificate for a dinner out at Ponderosa Steak House Resteraunt!
Well on now to the New Year. Hope this new one is just as wonderful or better than 2007!
Hope you enjoyed a little glimpse of our festivities....


I Found one Charnina Recipe! (for those that are searching)


Collect the blood of a freshly killed duck or goose and stir in 1/4 cup 6% vinegar. Seal and refrigerate until ready to use.In pot combine duck or goose wings, neck, rump, heart, and gizzard with 8 cups cold water. Bring to boil, skimming off scum until no more forms, reduce heat and simmer 1 hr. Add several peppercorns, cloves, and allspice grains and 1/2 to 1 bay leaf plus the standard portion of soup greens and simmer another 1-1 1/2 hours or until meat easily comes away from bone.
Dice giblets, remove meat from bones, dice, and return to strained stock. The soup vegetables may be diced and returned to pot or used in another dish according to preference. Add about 2 cups dried fruit: prunes, apples, pears, raisins, and simmer another 15-20 minutes. Fork-blend 2-3 Tablespoons flour with blood & vinegar mixture, add about 1/2 cup stock 1 Tablespoon at a time, stirring constantly, then return to pot. Season with salt, pepper, a pinch or 2 ground juniper berries (optional), sugar, and a bit more vinegar if needed to get a sweet, sour, winey flavor with subtly spicy undertones. Simmer gently several minutes and serve with egg noodles, noodle squares, grated-potato dumplings or cooked, diced potatoes.


It's Beginning to look a Lot Like Christmas!

Well I'm almost done with the Christmas shopping and have most of the food exept the last minute things like pies and breads. The kids are all looking forward to Santa, and our Papa Clause.( Grandpa) With the kids getting bigger, its been hard to pick out things for the kids for Christmas, so we offer either cash, (for a shopping spree) or the equivalent value in a Special wish for a gift. The boys, Darin and Matthew both asked for a flat screen television for their rooms and remote controled mini helicopter. Amber has wished for a portable DVD player, and the rest of her money to go on a spree. Sarah is wanting just the money so she can shop till she drops! Ha ha! At least they all get their wishes.
Our Christmas dinner always consists of our family's favorite, which is my Polish Galumpky ( stuffed cabbage rolls), but we'll also have sliced ham, Italian sausage, and Kielbasa. We also make boiled potatoes, and corn. I'm going to make some home-made cookies, and we'll have pies and cakes. (for Thanksgiving I bought one banana cream pie, and I did'nt even get one piece, so I think two will be the order of the day for this holiday! LOL!)

Looking forward to the great day ahead. Hoping yours will be just as great as ours will be too! What special holiday feasts are you all preparing for the special day? Is there a special item that the family always request from you?


A lot of people have been scanning the site meter of my blog in search of a recipe for Charnina soup. A dish, which is a Polish (i think) dish made from the blood of a duck with sweet plums or raisins in it. I know my Grandma used to make it, but I never got the recipe. (My mouth still waters for her soup with the home made noodles) Has anyone out there got one for me? I dont even know if it's possible to get the blood anymore. Sounds grousom, but it really was great the way my Grandma used to make it.


Tummys are full, all the family had fun, a good day was had by all!

Uncle Ed and Bunny / Grandpa Barlow

Wendy / Caroline

Sarah, Bunny and Matthew/

SARAH AND one Turkey /

Vegie Platter

The Small turkey in the
Popeils cooker- looks great!
Tastes great too!

Big grown up Amber!
Well two turkeys and tons of food later, and a second dinner on Friday nearly knocked off all the great food we had for Thanksgiving! Doesn't everyone look happy and contented? How thankfull I am to have such a happy family with me at the holidays. Hope everyone else has such a great time like we did.


Have a Very Happy THANKSGIVING !

As we sit down to our family dinner we will give thanks for all the wonderful gifts that we have received in this last year, and pray for continued blessings for the upcoming years for all our family and all our friends.



My hubby REALLY loves cookies with his coffee in the morning. He eats a LOT of them. Well, now that he's retired and staying home all day (and bugging me..,) he got the great idea to have me making all his favorite cookies from scratch in my nice new kitchen. Well, thats all well and good, but mixing the batter is tough and the pain it causes in my carpel tunnel wrists is getting to me. Luckily Darin and Amber have been over a few times and helped me mix up a few batches of cookies. So far I have made 3 batches of Oatmeal rasins, 2 batches of Peanute butter, One batch of Sugar roll outs, and One batch of Chocolate chip (doublel recipe) PHEW! The only thing is he dont realize that all those ingrediants cost a pretty penny. I guess he just likes to be spoiled like that. ( and I wonder if its not cheaper to just buy them already made, but he says mine taste better.)

Has anyone else got the mood yet to start baking for the holidays yet?

Well Thanksgiving is soon approaching and I have much more cooking to do this week. We have all the Kids and Grandkids coming to eat at my house as well as my Aunt and Uncle and possibly my Cousin to cook for again this year. I nearly got everything for it, but to get some fresh bread and rolls and a few vegies for the deli tray. Good thing Caroline always comes over the day before and helps peel the potatoes for me, cause they can be REALLY hard on my hands. Even Darin had volunteered to cut up some of the vegies for me, cause he says he likes cooking and preparing stuff like that. THANK GOD for good kids like that. ( both of them)

NA NA NA NA NA!, I have already set up my new balloon decorations up outside for Christmas! Bet I beat ya'all! ( now i hope its an easy winter so I can get them down again when the time comes! Otherwise they might be frozen to the ground till spring)

FINALLY! Got Amber and Darin's School pics too!

Here's Amber's 6th grade photo and Darin's 8th grade pic. It took a while to get to me, (and then I forgot to scan them right away, so Caroline reminded me) They are are certainly getting to be fine young people now. By the way, the shirt Darin is wearing finishes with " I was just thinking real hard" LOL! And Amber just loves Eyore and has lots of shirts with him on them.


The Kids are getting big!

Both Sarah and Matthew got their new school pics and they are great! See how big the little ones are now!

Still waiting for Darin and Amber's pics yet. These are the "little ones" of the family, not so little now... Note Matthew lost at least 50 lbs. during the illness with his tonsils, and still has'nt gained any back. He looks a lot better now.


Good Weekend was had at the Cider Mill!

We went to the cider mill this weekend with our Wendy and her kids, Sarah and Matthew. It was so nice out and even our new puppy, Bunny had a great time throwing stones in the water and posing behind the big billboard. Cider and donuts! YUM!

The Construction is DONE for now..

The Bathroom was the last room to get done, and surprise! The contractor offered real ceramic tile tub surround and floors instead of the plastic surround and floor tile I ordered. They did a great job and Im so glad the work is done! Now we can relax and enjoy! New tub, new toilet and new sink! How lovely!

The whole house got Oak stained woodwork including the bath. We just love it. Oak baseboards throughout! Even Oak Crown moulding around the family room!



The new furnature is here and the Oak stained wainscoating is up in the dining room. Also new blinds on the windows. Any suggestions on the color for the drapes for these windows with all these colors?
(walls are a cantalope color) I haven't found any good ideas yet in my shopping expeditions. I love the dark wood of the table against the oak color floors and wall trim.


In Loving Memory of Shadow

On Thursday, August 30th, 2007 we lost our beloved SHADOW, a 10-1/2 year old black Lab dog that we had since we rescued her from the dog pound 10 years ago. She was only 9 months old then and she was a faithful companion for us, going camping with us and the grandkids, following us ( just like our shadow) every where we went, and she loved to go for car rides. All she asked for was a lOT of loving. She would actually make us put our hands on her head to pet her any time we would sit still. She would nose her way under our arm or hand. I always said we should tie a fake hand on her collar to keep her happy.

Shadow stopped being able to eat about 4 weeks ago, and that was a Thursday. We tried to get her to eat soft food, and even hand fed her some nuggets, but everything she ate she threw up. The following week on Monday, we took her to the vet, and he did blood and x-rays, but could'nt tell me what was wrong other than her blood count was high, indicating an infection. He gave me anti-biotics and told me to call the other doctor that removed some large fatty tumors off of her chest, back in April to see if he could suggest any thing further for her. I tried to call and we kept missing each other for a couple days. When he finally did call back again, I told him that she still could not eat, but was drinking lots of water. He had me take her back in, and he felt a lump deep in her throat but the x-rays did not show for certain what it was. He gave me cans of liquid dog food and some medicine to settle her stomach hoping that she could get some strength from that, and heal whatever it was. Shadow hungrily ate the liquified food and seemed to regain some strength for about a week, but last Wednesday we noticed that her neck looked terribly swollen. She ate her food, and later that night she threw up a foamy thick white substance. The next morning I prepared another batch of liquid food for her and she took one drink and shied away. Then I decided to check her swollen neck. It was hard and painful for her, and she flinched when I pressed on it and started to choke on more of that foamy discharge again. I could tell she was in pain, and she was fighting to regain her breath again. I immediatly called the vets office, but her other doc was not in and they asked if I wanted to wait till Friday to see him. I decided that Shadow didnt have time to wait, and they had me bring her right in. The vet took another x-ray of her throat, and thats when she showed me that Shadow had a big tumor in her esophogus that was nearly choking off her windpipe, and that this was not operable. She said in involved too many major arteries, in her neck, and the only hope is to try to refer her to a cancer doctor to try Chemo, but more than likely that Shadow would die during the night or within 24 hours, because she would suffocate with such a small windpipe to breath through, and that would be a horrible way to die. She suggested that it was the best to put her down. I called my husband and we decided together that was the best to ease her suffering. It was one of the worse things that I have had to do. I kept petting her and telling her that she was a good girl as the nurse gave her some medicine to make her sleepy. They then put her on a cute baby blanket and told me to wait about 15 minutes for her to get sleepy. When the doctor came in, Shadow was laying her head on her paws, but still trying to look around at the people, moving her head right and left to follow us. The vet turned her on her side and Shadow had trouble breathing, and was gurgling as she breathed. The shot took just a minute, and by the time she finished, and put on her thesocope to check her hearbeat, she said, She gone.

Yesterday my Granddaughter, Amber came over with a paper she make for us in memory of Shadow. She recalled all the fun they had with Shadow since she and her brother were little kids, and this Tribute just broke our hearts! It was so beautiful I just have to show you it.....