Monday, December 31, 2007

December Retrospective

December Retrospective, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

365 - Good-bye 2007 and Project 365

Monday, December 31, 2007 11:55 p.m.

We'll take a cup of kindness dear . . .

Auld Lang Syne - a poem by Robert Burns

The poem Auld Land Syne by Robert Burns has been immortalised by the tradition of singing the lyrics to
Auld Lang Syne at Christmas and New Year parties. Auld Lang Syne is also sung on Burns Night, 25th January to celebrate the life and works of Robert Burns. This musical version of Auld Lang Syne usually consists of the first verse and the chorus. Auld Lang Syne was written in 1788 and the words 'Auld Lang Syne' literally translates from old Scottish dialect meaning 'Old Long Ago' and is about love and friendship in times past. The words in the poem Auld Lang Syne referring to 'We'll take a Cup of Kindness yet' relate to a drink shared by men and women to symbolise friendship. Happy New Year!!!

Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And never brought to mind?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And auld lang syne?

For auld lang syne, my dear,
For auld lang syne,
We'll tak a cup o' kindness yet,
For auld lang syne.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

364 - Sleet

364 - Sleet, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

363 - Anne of Green Gables

363 - Anne of Green Gables, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Mary Beth called me at 5:30 p.m. to tell me that she had an extra ticket to the sold out performance of Anne of Green Gables at 7:30. I jumped at the opportunity. This high school senior NAILED her. It was a pleasure to watch from beginning to end.

Friday, December 28, 2007

362 - Late Lucia LOL!

362 - Late Lucia LOL!, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

Santa Lucia Day is December 13, but we didn't get around to it this year until AFTER Christmas!

Santa Lucia is known in Sweden as the "Queen of Light." She was born in Syracus, Sicily in the third century A.D. of noble Greek parentage. She wanted to give her dowry to the poor, but the man to whom she was betrothed was furious! He brought it to the authorities, and she was martyred on December 13, 304. She is called the "Queen of Light" because she was willing to give up her life to honor Christ.

On this day, the eldest daughter (or mother) in the family protrays Lucia. Dressed in white and wearing a crown of lighted candles symbolic of her name she awakens the family with a tray of freshly baked Lucia buns and hot coffee, tea, or hot chocolate.

Since I am Swedish (50%), it is a way to honor my heritage and pass on this lovely tradition to my children even when it is a little late. :)

361 - Grandma's 1930 Woodcut

361 - Grandma's 1930 Woodcut, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

My grandmother taught art at Beverly Hills and L.A. High from about 1920 - 1960. This was one of her homemade woodcut Christmas cards. Charles was her only child and my dad.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

360 - The Light Still Shines

360 - The Light Still Shines, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

I have been on the couch since 7:30 a.m. The Advent Candles have burned as I have read my Bible, journaled, listened to Mannheim Steamroller, and gotten myself organized for the future. It is almost 3 p.m. now, and there are only two candles left burning. What a lovely and relaxing day.

359 - White Christmas!

359 - White Christmas, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

We were surprised to see little snowflakes mixed with rain on our way to Newberg this morning. We thought, "It won't stick." Well, it didn't stick on the Willamette Valley floor, but it did at Grandmother's house since it is about 200 feet above sea level! Perched on the side of her hill we overlooked her front acre of evergreens as we ate our Christmas lunch. It continued to fall throughout the meal! After lunch, George and Paul went outside and built a snow man! It was magical since we had not even dreamed of having a White Christmas! We haven't had snow at Christmas for about fifteen years. This picture of the little evergreen tree was my favorite shot of all and taken by my guest photog, George. :)

358 - The Simplicity of the Stable

Monday, December 24, 2007

Before I turned out the living room lights I looked at Mary and Joseph who had just made it to the stable and are awaiting the coming of the Christ like the rest of us.

Today was a day of beauty for me from beginning to end: sleeping in and going to Group Power weight lifting with my favorite instructor, Angie, seeing the gloomy clouds disappear through the cathedral windows in the new exercise room and blue sky emerge, deciding to run outside in the sunshine (after so many days of solid rain) instead of inside on the treadmill, spying a beautiful brook that had emerged through a forest of trees and bright green grass, running through some old running trails near my old house, basking in the sun as I listened to Michael W. Smith's Christmas album on my iPod and worshiping the God who made us all, coming home to a wonderful family, gathering around the advent wreath and singing, and, finally, relaxing with them as we watched movies and ate pizza.

It was a peaceful and wonderful Christmas Eve.

Muppet Christmas Carol on Christmas Eve

Muppet Christmas Carol, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

We watched The Muppet Christmas Carol and It's a Wonderful Life this Christmas Eve as we ate "red and green" pizza (Meditteranean Chicken with sundried tomatoes and spinach) and lime sherbet punch out of our fancy glass punch bowl. We usually go to a Christmas Eve service and have a family over for dinner, but nobody could come, and the kids really wanted to stay home after two nights of being out with friends. I loved the relaxed evening immensely.

It was lovely. I just love The Christmas Carol by Dickens, and I really think that the Muppet Christmas Carol gets it RIGHT in terms of having lines directly out of the book. It was such a pleasure to watch with the ones I love.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

357 - The Wise Men's Candle

357 - The Wise Men's Candle, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

We light this candle on the fourth Sunday in Advent to remind us of God's gift of His Son Jesus. In giving us His Son He gave us Himself. In our house, it is purple to remind us of the wise men who came and brought gifts to the baby Jesus.

356 - Cowden Cul de Sac Christmas Caroling

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Remember the 4th of July Party Hostess with the Mostest, Lisa? Well, she and her lovely family also host a Christmas Caroling Party every year. (except they were in Australia last Christmas and DIDN'T fly home to host the party. Imagine that?).

What a blessed time!

355 - Couples Christmas Dinner

Couples Christmas Dinner, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

Friday, December 21, 2007

The festive weekend began with a couples dinner at our house with dear friends. We dropped our kids off at Doug and Lisa's to hang out with their kids, and D & L and Pete and Sharon came here for a quiet candlelight dinner. We had a lovely time.

My only regret is that the picture of Doug and Lisa was too blurry in the low light and didn't make the photo mosaic!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

354 - Christmas Self-Portrait

354 - Christmas Self-Portrait, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

I realized that I hadn't done a self-portrait in a very long time. So, this may be the last one for 365!

Merry Christmas!!!!!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

353 - Wrapping it Up

353 - Wrapping it Up, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

I picked up dear husband at 11:00 a.m., and we finished up our gift (and grocery) shopping by 1:00 p.m. So, this picture is literally the "wrap up" of this year's gifts! CLOSURE!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

352 - Swedish Spritz Perfection

352 - Swedish Spritz, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

My mom used to make Spritz cookies for us every Christmas as her mom did before her. We carry on that tradition only GEORGE is the one who usually makes them. He presented them to me on this lovely Christmas plate so I had to take a picture because it looked so pretty!

Last year, catastrophe rocked the "W" household when our Pampered Chef Cookie Press ring BROKE in the middle of the process! This year was saved without having to purchase a whole new press thanks to my friend and Pampered Chef consultant, Dorothy. She was able to replace the ring for only $3! Really, don't mess around with those laborious metal cookie presses. Buy the Pampered Chef one if you want flawless and easy Spritz cookies everytime.

The Circle of Life

Spritz, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

The tradition continues throughout the generations. He got them so RED this year. Usually, they come out pink.

Monday, December 17, 2007

351 - Linn-Benton Food Share

351 - Linn-Benton Food Share, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

Today, we volunteered with others in the community (including four other homeschool families) at the Linn-Benton Food Share. We prepared 9,000 mailers for mailing and had a great time in the process. We met a new family who wants to start an English country dance club (think Jane Austen flicks)!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

350 - The Shepherds' Candle

350 - The Shepherds' Candle, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

The third Sunday in Advent is the Shepherds' candle. It is also known as the joy candle so we sang "Joy to the World" by candlelight tonight.

349 - Backyard Buck

349 - Backyard Buck, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

We were all excited to spy this four point buck in our backyard today. According to you Easterners, it is considered an eight point buck!

We just finished the seventh season of Monarch of the Glen, and this guy reminded me of "Big Eric"!

348 - Gingerbread House Day

348 - Gingerbread House Day, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Our yearly tradition, and Paul enjoys it the most of any of us. We did it with the Kinkades today.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

347 - 4-H Woodworking Class

347 - 4-H Woodworking Class, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

My boys went to 4-H today with their dad who is my guest photographer because I stayed at home and vegged on the couch today. They are making tool boxes.

The Woodworking Class

The Woodworking Class, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

John, the instructor, is on the right. He is a WONDERFUL man who is an elder at our church. He is a good teacher and so gentle with the kids. George has loved assisting him in class.

346 - Mt. Shasta from the Air

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

I know it is a fuzzy shot through an airplane window, but we went by Mt. Shasta on the east side this time as compared to the west side two weeks ago from I-5. Here is the other shot of Mt. Shasta: SHASTA

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

345 - In Memoriam

345 - In Memoriam, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

We commemorated my mom's life with a memorial service. It was simply beautiful in every way from beginning to end. Good-bye dear Mom and thank you.

344 - Wouldn't You Like to Ride . . .

Monday, December 10, 2007

In my beautiful balloon?

We looked out the French doors of our villa this morning to see this balloon floating by. It was so close, we could hear the flame.

343 - A Place of Refuge

343 - A Place of Refuge, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

We made our way down to Southern California today for my mom's memorial service. We decided that we needed a place of refuge apart from family members to have privacy and rest and relaxation while we mourn. We are staying at the South Coast Winery Resort and Spa. ( We have a beautiful villa with a HUGE bathroom overlooking the vineyard. It is lovely (and for a discount price!).

Saturday, December 8, 2007

342 - From Dear Husband

342 - From Dear Husband, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

Yesterday, when I was making arrangements for the memorial service, my dh walked in the door with these sunny flowers, and it cheered me up in my grief. Yellow flowers are my favorite!

Friday, December 7, 2007

341 - Heavenly Home

341 - Mom's in Heaven, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.
My mom moved to her heavenly home at 2 a.m. This sight just gave me peace this morning.

340 - St. Nicholas Day Tradition

340 - St. Nicholas Day, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

We have been celebrating St. Nicholas Day with the "I" family for the past six years. What a joy to have such a fun tradition with such a great family!

St. Nicholas Day Sunset

St. Nicholas Day Sunset, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

I was looking at the beginnings of this as my hands and arms were covered in flour while making the St. Nicholas Day cookies. I did catch it when I drove away and had to stop and take a picture!

339 - Christmas Teapot

339 - Christmas Teapot, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

One of my favorite things about this season is having tea from my Christmas teapot!

338 - Light in my Day

338 - Light in my Day, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

After two days of pouring rain, light poured into my house.

337 - Boys in the Bulb

337 - Boys in the Bulb, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

Monday, December 3, 2007

336 - Prophets Candle

336 - Prophets Candle, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

In this first Sunday of Advent, we light the prophets candle who told of the coming of the Christ.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

335 - Finding the Perfect Tree

This is our ninth year going to Donavan's Tree Farm to get a Christmas Tree. We settled on a six foot Douglas Fir.

November Retrospective

November Retrospective, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

It was a bittersweet month for me.

334 - Do You?

334 - Do You?, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

Friday, November 30, 2007

I do! This was on Isaac's T-Shirt tonight at Boys' Group.

333 - A Slice of Happiness

333 - Happy at Home, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.
Thursday, November 29, 2007
Last night, I came in jumping up and down and kissing the ground and my precious men (over and over and over again) saying, "I'm happy, happy, happy to be home!" (This helped because our house was FREEZING after not being heated for 12 days!)

This morning, the sun came shining through the window during my quiet time on the couch. I know it sounds so silly, but God always has a way of confirming things with me by having sun shine through windows. George noticed the dance of light on my hair and called it my "slice of happiness." I see it as God's confirmation that George (My Mr. Knightly) was right in having me come home even though my mom is not gone. I needed the rest, and God's light made that abundantly clear this morning.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

332 - Mount Shasta from I-5

332 - Mount Shasta from I-5, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

George thought this one told a story. I wish I could say I purposely got the Interstate 5 sign in the picture, but it just happened to fly by while I was snapping!

Northern California is spectacularly beautiful, and Mount Shasta was particularly breathtaking this morning!

BTW, I am home! My mother is still alive but has stabilized for the time being. It was time for me to be at home with my family for a while before I go back in the near future for her homegoing. I know I made the best decision for my family and for my own mental health.

331 - Happy Travelers

331 - Happy Travelers, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

My kids are the consummate travelers. We have taken the 1,000 mile trip to Southern California and back so many times, and they always make the best of being stuck in a car for 16 1/2 hours. I am so thankful for them.

330 - Sterling

330 - Sterling, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

Monday, November 26, 2007

This building was my "home away from home" for much of November. So, I had to take a picture of it for my final day here. It is a very nice retirement community with a senior residence, assisted-living facility and Alzheimer's unit. My mom is in assisted-living on the second floor.

329 - High Def Heaven

329 - High Def Heaven, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

My brother was SO excited about getting this High Def Flat Screen 50 inch T.V. screen that I told him that I would make it my picture of the day.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

328 - Lunch with Mom

328 - Lunch with Mom, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Applesauce, yogurt, soup and cranberry juice have been my mom's meal plan since I came on October 31.

Friday, November 23, 2007

327 - Morning Paper

327 - Morning Paper, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

We took a walk and saw this guy sitting outside the Starbuck's reading his morning paper. :)

Thursday, November 22, 2007

326 - Happy Thanksgiving!

325 - Happy Thanksgiving!, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

From one of my mom's many visitors. Hope everyone has a great day!

325 - Triathlon Man

325 - Triathlon Man, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

My brother went and took a swim in an OUTDOOR pool in November and learned that it wasn't heated. :) He just bought a new bike and is training for a triathlon.

324 - Praying at the Window

324 - Praying at the Window, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

This guy is at my mom's screen door almost every day.

323 - Good-Bye Old Friend

323 - Good-Bye Old Friend, originally uploaded by carolfoasia.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Liz came to visit my mom today. She talked of fishing and boating and water-skiing and all the fun times they had together. Liz is 86 years old and still driving, leading Bible study, and feeding the homeless in Oceanside. She is the only one of my parents' old friends left of the group of friends who moved to Fallbrook after their retirement from Rockwell International in the late 70's. It was a sweet time that concluded in a heart-warming prayer for my mom's elevation to her heavenly home.

One of my favorite things about my growing up years were my parents' great friends! Thanks Liz.