Thank you so much for your encouragement and kind comments on last month’s post when I wondered if I should continue my end-of-month wrap-ups. I enjoy doing them, and I am happy to hear you enjoy reading them.
February was a nice mixture of quietness and busyness. We always enjoy Valentine’s Day around here. It has become a tradition to make what we call Meat Hearts for that day’s dinner: Li’l Cheddar Meat Loaves (minus the mustard and with much less sugar) made in heart shapes rather than ovals. And I also make heart-shaped cupcakes from a gluten-free mix. We’ve always made the day about the whole family. Then we enjoyed celebrating my daughter-in-law’s birthday with dinner and cake here one night and then an outing to the Downton Abbey Exhibit at the Biltmore estate last Saturday. Fun!
The weather has been up and down as well: some bitterly cold days, some warmer than usual, many in the 40s. Even though this has not been a severe winter, I’m read for it to be over. Spring is coming!
I know my grandson’s funny observations are the favorite part of these posts for some of you. But I don’t have anything new this month besides what I already mentioned at the Biltmore visit. I did want to share this funny-to-me picture, though. There’s been much talk of going camping in the spring. So when we watched Timothy a couple of weeks ago during his parents’ date, he wanted to go “pretend camping” with Granddad while I made dinner. They put drinks in a cooler, turned off the living room lights, turned on lanterns, made a pretend fire, had Alexa play forest noises first, then a babbling brook. I mentioned earlier that Timothy was impressed when Granddad got out his real camping pans to cook their toy fish. Timothy had rediscovered a little tent stuffed in a closet that he had played in a lot when he was two or three. He got that out and set it up. He was too big to fit, of course, but otherwise he seemed pretty cozy.
With Valentine’s Day this month, I spent much of one week in the craft room. I let the Cricut do a lot of the heavy lifting this time for the main images.
This was my husband, Jim’s:
The Cricut even did the writing and the drawing for the lace. I would’ve used more masculine colors, but I was afraid the writing wouldn’t show up on maroon or red cardstock. The background is scrapbooking paper.
This is Jeremy’s:
This is Jason’s:
I had seen a similar idea on Pinterest and used the Cricut for the musical note. I rummaged through my heart shapes, hoping I had one already the right size, and I was delighted to find this puffy one.
This is Mittu’s, who likes purple:
This is my grandson, Timothy’s:
And this was for Mittu’s birthday, as she loves tea:
While riding my exercise bike, I finished the Amazon prime series called Home Fires, about the British Women’s Institute during WWII. It ended up being a little soap-operaish, which I didn’t care for. There were a few incidents of people sleeping with people they weren’t supposed to, but nothing explicit was shown. Other than that, it was a good series. I was surprised it ended with a cliffhanger without being renewed. It’s based on a book called Jambusters, which I have not read but which I understand is more like a documentary.
I just started a series called Dickensian. It has Dickens characters all living in the same town and interacting. Marley is still alive and working with Scrooge. Miss Havisham (Great Expectations) has not yet been jilted but has suffered an estrangement from her brother over their father’s will. Fagin and Bill Sikes lurk in the shadows. Little Nell lies sick in The Old Curiosity Shop. Inspector Bucket (Bleak House) investigates a murder. It’s intriguing, though dark: I haven’t seen any of Dickens’ humor yet. (Update: Unfortunately, some nudity was displayed in episode three. I didn’t think to check on that kind of thing because this is Dickens, after all. Argh! So I stopped watching and can’t recommend this after all.)
We haven’t watched any movies together as a family yet, but I want to see It’s a Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood. I will probably have to keep a supply of tissues nearby. Mr. Rogers was about the only TV show we let our kids watch for a long time.
This month I finished (titles link to my reviews):
- Off the Clock: Feel Less Busy While Getting More Done by Laura Vanderkam
- Good Tidings of Great Joy: A Collection of Christmas Sermons by Charles Spurgeon
- Hard Times by Charles Dickens (audiobook)
- The Words Between Us by Erin Bartels
- Old Town in the Green Groves by Cynthia Rylant, about the “lost years” of the Little House books.
I’m currently reading:
- The Last Castle: The Epic Story of Love, Loss, and American Royalty in the Nation’s Largest Home by Denise Kiernan about the Biltmore House.
- Be Reverent (Ezekiel): Bowing Before Our Awesome God by Warren Wiersbe
- Doctor Thorne by Anthony Trollope (audiobook)
- The Mother-Daughter Book Club by Heather Vogel Frederick
- The Women of Easter: Encounter the Savior with Mary of Bethany, Mary of Nazareth, and Mary Magdalene by Liz Curtis Higgs
You may have noticed a different url than usual. I just transitioned from the free version of WordPress to the paid, which comes with a free domain name. Unfortunately, just my first and last name plus .com was already taken by a realtor in Charleston. I’ve been thinking about taking this step for some time, both to increase storage space and to get rid of ads. When I couldn’t upload pictures earlier this week because I didn’t have any storage left, I figured it was time. Thankfully links under the old domain name still seem to work.
I’ve thought, off and on, ever since starting this blog of changing the name. Since “Stray Thoughts” isn’t in the domain name, I could easily change it. That’s the only name I could think of when I first started the blog. I keep think I should come up with something more creative. But after 13+ years, maybe it’s better to leave it the same.
- Wanting My Own Way. Still a struggle, even though I know better.
- When I Fall, I Shall Rise.
- Working Toward Harmonious Relationships.
- When Not to Be Minimalist.
I’ve gotten several good session in with my work-in-progress. I’m about ready to tackle my hardest chapter—hard because I have a lot of information to try to cover in as concise and interesting a way as possible. I’d appreciate your prayers.
And that about wraps up February here. How was yours?