Thursday, November 29, 2012

Tree Cats

About an hour after we got the tree up, Dooku found the tree skirt.  He spends most of his time under the tree now.  In fact, it's rare to see him out and about unless it's near his meal time.  Ack, cats!  But how can you not love that sweet face?!

Last year Dooku climbed the tree.  We were very perturbed by this, as you can imagine.  We're two very OCD people!  I haven't - yet - seen any evidence of him doing that this year.  We made an effort to put cheep, ball ornaments in the center of the tree.  Hopefully, when looking up it, he saw a less attractive route to climb.

As we leave for the cruises tonight, I can only hope and pray Dooku stays under the tree, not IN it!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

December Daily

I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving!!  I was out of town, hence my lack of an appropriately themed post.  Our holiday was wonderful, though, spent with family, some of whom I rarely see.  It's a marvelous treat that Thanksgiving with them has become a tradition, otherwise we'd lose touch!

Now we're on to Christmas!  I've decided to do something I've only read about since now: December Daily.  It's a mini journal cataloguing the 25 days of ChristmasHere's a good post about what this journal can be.  For more pictures, just google (or Pinterest) December Daily.  

In anticipation of wanting to do this for the first time, I ordered a kit from October Afternoon - a company I'm liking more and more for my scrapbooking needs.   Yes, this may have been complete madness on my part....  When will I actually have time to put this together?  We're going on a - no, two! - cruises next week.  8 of my 25 days will be spent doing anything but Christmas-y things!  

But I've decided to make my December Daily mini journal work the way I need it to.  Most of our 25 days will begin after we return from the cruises.  They will go to New Year's, through which we're in Tennessee with Mr. Higgins' family.  (Yes, I'm so OCD that I've counted out my 25 days.)

I love, LOVE, the OA kit.  I can't wait to get started.  Er.....whenever that happens!  I made crafty progress, though, over the weekend: I finished our Christmas cards.  I made thirty and will send out only five store-bought cards.  Success!  I'll post a pic once they're mailed!


Wednesday, November 21, 2012

The Tiger's Wife

I picked up The Tiger's Wife, by Tea Obreht, recently.  It had graced my bookshelf for several months and I finally had time to read it.  Wow.  Wow, is all I can say.  This is literature.  Modern literature with magnificent storytelling.  Here's the review I posted on Goodreads:

It's rare to come across a book like this, especially one that has become so popular. But it's popular for one simple reason - it's storytelling at its most magnificent.

From the description, little about the story interested me - a young doctor is trying to unravel the mystery of her grandfather's death. But what Obreht accomplishes is a timeless tale that left me wanting more and more. She tells the stories the young doctor heard from her grandfather - the "deathless man", the Tiger's Wife, tales from the war.... Weaved together with the experiences of the young doctor, herself surviving a war, Obreht keeps the reader constantly intrigued.

This is a classic. 

If you don't have this book, buy it.  I'm sure you will love it as much as I did. 

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Book Signing

Have you run across the blog Young House LoveI hadn't until last week.  

I was scheduled to hang out with my best friend and her adorable youngster on Saturday.  However, my friend texted to say that she had double-booked herself; she really wanted to go to a book signing for these people who write a blog - and now a book.  She gave me their website and I looked around.  

Young House Love is about a couple, the Petersiks, who, now on their second home, like fixing up their house.  They have tons of DIY projects and decorating ideas.  It's fun to see what they come up with!  

On Saturday, we waited in line for three hours.  My friend got her book signed and the Petersiks were very nice and personable.  Now I'm debating buying the book.  I didn't want to pay an extra $10 to buy it on Saturday (it's cheaper on Amazon).  

I highly recommend their blog if you're looking for ideas on freshening up your home!

Friday, November 16, 2012

Christmas Card Production

I'm actually ahead of the game this year, as far as Christmas cards are concerned.  I have to be, since we'll be on cruises the first week of December.  I want to have all my Christmas cards made by the time we leave so that I can mail them when we get back.  Having designed the card last weekend, I now need to go into mass production mode!

Of course, I can't show you the card yet (not until the recipients start getting them in the mail!), but my inspiration came from Mish Mash.  She's my go-to gal for card and Project Life inspiration.  I absolutely adore her style!  Of course, I don't have nearly enough patience - or time - to do as much as she does, but I love seeing what she comes up with!  

Speaking of Project Life, I'm so excited I was able to keep up with it throughout the year.  It really is a wonderful way to preserve memories and memorabilia.  I'm already looking forward to ordering a new binder and kit for next year.  

So many little time! 

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Nutella Biscuits

I've become slightly addicted to looking at cooking/baking blogs.  There are so many out there that offer so many scrumptious recipes!!  I usually pin my favorites and move on.

However, every now and then I come across a recipe I have to try ASAP.  This is what happened when I saw two peas & their pod's Nutella Biscuits. 

Even though Nutella has been sold in the U.S. for quite some time, I first fell in love with it in Europe.  They serve it with crepes and like jelly at continental breakfasts.  Oh, boy, was it good!  So what could be better than Nutella biscuits?!  

On Saturday, there I went, whipping up the biscuits.  When it came time to  "swirl" the Nutella into the dough with a knife....  Well, that didn't go so well.  I ended up with bit globs of Nutella in the biscuits.  They tasted fine but there's a reason there is not a picture on here.  The biscuits were not at all photogenic.  But they were quite tasty!

As with every other holiday season, there's so much I want to bake and not nearly enough time in which to accomplish it all!  I lose a week in December because Mr. Higgins just had to do a cruise before a certain ship is retired in the spring.  I'm willing to make this sacrifice for him but my baking timetable is severely affected.  Ha!

Let the holiday baking begin!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Christmas Tree Crafts!

Whenever my mother-in-law is in town (she was last week), she always inspires me to do more crafts.  Unfortunately, I usually don't have time to get them done....but it's so much fun seeing her enthusiasm.  She finds the coolest things on the internet to do!

Remember my fall yarn wreath?  Here's another craft along that similar vein....  (Go here to see the blogger's post about it.)

I really want to make some of these beauties!  Of course, I bought yarn last year for a Christmas yarn wreath and guess how far along I got with that?  Nowhere. 

My mother-in-law has also made some of these paper Christmas trees...

I'd also like to make some of these! (Go here for a tutorial.)  In short, there are too many cute crafty things out there and not nearly enough time.  Until retirement.  Sigh!

In the meantime, I'll enjoy my mother-in-law's craftiness from afar!

Friday, November 2, 2012

Cat's Creations

My in-laws are in town this week and we're having a lot of fun eating too much and hanging out (while not at work).  My mother-in-law got ultra-crafty during my wedding preparation and she makes beautiful things!  

She heard of a store about an hour away from us, in Mineral Wells, Texas: a scrapbook store.  She had never seen a physical scrapbook store and was eager to go.  I took the day off yesterday and we headed west.  Oh, boy. 

I hadn't been to a scrapbook store since my years in Michigan.  Cat's Creations blew those stores out of the water.  This store is fantastic!  They had more than I ever imagined!  They have things organized by theme and then brand and line.  It was overwhelming!  I mainly bought paper for Christmas cards but they had cat paper, island paper (St. Thomas paper, Hawaii paper, Jamaica paper), Colorado paper, and all the accessories to go with them.  They had stuff I'd only ever seen online!

I spent way too much money.  The lady who helped us was super nice, which made me happy to support the local store.  She said they've been open for eight years!  How have I not heard of them!  I'm already excited about the possibility of heading out that way again!  If you're ever in the neighborhood, head to Cat's Creations.