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The Merry Christmas Post

The Merry Christmas Post

The Merry Christmas PostMerry Christmas to you and yours!

Things are truly crazy around our house lately. We’ve been under the weather with a virus (for what seems like months, but is only a couple weeks) and sticking pretty close to home. I wanted to post a beautiful photo of our lovely tree, all decorated and twinkling, but I’m settling instead for a photo of me wrapped up in an afghan. Yes, that’s how sick we’ve been around here!

I’m writing this a bit in advance because I want to take a mini-vacation; I want to spend time with my family instead of my computer during these few days before and after Christmas. But, I want you, my readers, to know how much I appreciate you!

May God Bless You and Your Family this Christmas,

Karen

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December Memories

December memories

Christmas seems to bring to mind so many memories. This year is no exception as I think about Christmases from the past with my Granny and Papa. It wasn’t often that we saw them in December. Memories of them during the Christmas season are few because we were living in other states and countries for years.

To Grandmother’s House We Go

I do vividly remember one particular Christmas with my Granny — probably because it was the year I was learning to play the bass clarinet. If you’re not familiar with a bass clarinet, let me just say it’s a wind instrument. Looking at it, you wouldn’t think it would be loud. But it is. Especially in small homes filled with people. That year, the band director thought it would be a wonderful idea for us to practice for 21 hours over Christmas break. My horn barely fit in the enormous trunk of my parents’ sea green Pontiac with all the suitcases, but we got it in and made the drive from Denver to Oklahoma.

My Granny and Papa lived on an Oklahoma farm. Which means that while they had chickens and cows, the cows lived in the pasture and the barn was used for hay, not milk cows. The barns were built about the time of the land run. I remember them as old, weathered, and silvery-gray.

December memories

Free Concerts

Granny saw the horn and told me that I could practice in the hay barn. It wasn’t really cold, but the air was nippy enough that a coat and hat were in order. I took the chair, stand and huge instrument case down to the hay barn followed by a couple of faithful farm dogs. I played quite a bit that Christmas trying to finish up the 21 hours of practice required by my Band director.

Family members would drift down from time to time and listen to me play. It was kind of cool to practice in the big hay barn to an audience of one and a couple of the farm dogs. Except the dogs didn’t hang out for long. But it was cool anyway.

December Memories

Do you have any favorite (or funny) December memories? Tell me about them in the comments, and we can reminisce together. And may you have a very Merry Christmas this year!

Karen

P.S. Don’t forget to sign up for the Use Your Stash Challenge!

use-your-stash-challenge-2017

P.P.S. She is also the Granny I crocheted countless nose warmers for when I was a little girl (actually a wad of crochet on two strings), which she put into her china cabinet because they were special to her.

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Vacation time

This time of year I take some vacation time to enjoy my family and spend time not connected to a laptop or a project.  I am pretty close to burn out by this time of year and it helps me to spend time with family. We tend to pull in pretty tight as a family unit this time of year. October and November are increasing in intensity and then add in the Christmas season, it is pretty overwhelming.

Vacation time

I have completed the bi-annual gifts for the dogs. I sewed new dog beds up for them. The one photographed above was created for Sebastian, our son and daughter in law’s dog. He is a little smaller than ours and fits quite nicely in his new bed.  Vacation time

It needs some paint but I liked the fact that it was printed with the bulb brand on the front so I left it.

Vacation time

Our dogs loved the new bed as well. Here they are testing the finished product.

My kitchen has been in a semi-useful state the past couple of days as we were changing out the lighting. The old fluorescent fixtures needed changing out as the ballasts were bad and half of the bulbs bad. Here is a photo in a half done state. Vacation time

Removing the ceiling texture is next on our list. It is looking much brighter and I think the LED lights will save us some money.  I was worried that the construction would put me behind on Christmas cooking and baking but I think it will be ok. I worked on some other things that needed to be done. This Christmas is just family and the kids are here to pitch in and help.

We have been watching The Great British Baking Show and I am inspired to try baking some new things. So, baking is in the plans for today.

There are great sales happening in all shops and I will keep them open but they won’t be shipped until after Christmas from the Etsy shop. Vacation time has come and it is sorely needed. The time to putter in the kitchen, clean and decorate just a bit more is badly needed.

I will be back before the New Year with a round up post and then BOOM 2016 will happen. There are wonderful things in the works for next year and I can’t wait to tell you. There are new projects, new plans for both shops, new designs, tons of bright new yarn already waiting for the crochet hook! I pray that your Christmas is merry and bright! May you have the peace and joy of the season, may you renew old friendships and make new ones!
Talk to you later,

Karen

P.S. If you still need to shop you can find the shops here:

https://www.etsy.com/shop/ChocolateDogStudio

https://www.etsy.com/shop/ChocolatesBabyShop

http://www.amazon.com/handmade/chocolate-dog-studio

 

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The Shop is on Sale!

sale right sizeEverything in the shop is 30% off. I really want to start the year off with a clean slate in the shop! WooHoo! So, my desire to start with a clean slate is your opportunity and when opportunity knocks you really should answer! All this to say…shop to your hearts content!

Everything, absolutely everything in the shop, including aprons, hats, scarves, infinity scarves, blankets, cozies, ornaments, and crystal, is all 30% off! It will never ALL be this low again. I may put bits and pieces of the shop on sale but not ALL of it.

I did some organizing and cleaning yesterday and I will do more today in preparation for the new year. I can’t wait to get started on the Use Your Stash Challenge. It starts pretty soon… so figure out the rules for your challenge. It can be a short and sweet WIPS challenge or a giant 300 items in 300 days Challenge. It can be make 20 items in 50 days or you can simply finish that One thing that is driving you nuts. I am gathering my items together and planning out how it is all going to happen! This is why I am having the huge sale. I do so want to add new things to the shop this Spring! We are not going to start on January 1st. I am giving myself some time off. I have my daughter home from college and I want to enjoy her visit. I have some cleaning to do in the studio. I also need to get youngest  daughter started with her schooling before I jump in with both feet to create anything new. The anticipation is growing and I can hardly wait to get started.

The Use Your Stash challenge is the 12 of January. You can read more about my rules for my Challenge last year here: http://www.chocolatedogstudio.com/2014/01/17/1-thing-for-100-days-challenge/  You can see most of the completed items here: http://www.chocolatedogstudio.com/2014/04/14/100-items-in-100-days/

Thanks,
Karen