Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year

Happy New Year's Eve! We are such party animals this year that we are staying home. I don't like being out on the road on this night anyway. My dad has always called it "amateur drunk night" and I'm finding that is pretty accurate. I am fixing spaghetti with home-made sauce (thanks to Mom & Pops #2) and we're going to watch videos until it's time to ring in the New Year. Then we'll go to bed! Whoo hoo..... Exciting!

With Mom still in the hospital (they're are new rumors that she may be sprung to come home this weekend), we're just really not in the festive mood these days. We're looking forward to her being home so we can get back into a normal-type groove and get her on the mend.

We have a lot to be thankful in our lives, but we're really hoping and praying that 2010 will be better for all of us. 2009 has been a bit of a stinker with the job losses, moving, and Mom's illness. So here's to a great 2010 for everyone!!!

Please be safe and start the New Year out well!

Blue Moon

Blue Moon, you saw me standing alone,
Without a dream in my heart,
Without a love of my own,
Blue moon, you knew just what I was there for,
You heard me saying a prayer for,
Someone I could care for,

And then there suddenly appeared before me,
Someone my arms could really hold,
I heard you whisper "Darling please adore me,"
And when I looked to the moon it had turned to gold,

Blue moon, now I'm no longer alone,
Without a dream in my heart,
Without a love of my own.

And then there suddenly appeared before me
The only one my arms will ever hold
heard somebody whisper please adore me
And when I looked the Moon had turned to gold

Blue moon
Now I'm no longer alone
Without a dream in my heart
Without a love of my own

Blue moon
Now I'm no longer alone
Without a dream in my heart
Without a love of my own

Blue Moon - Original lyrics by Rodgers and Hart in 1934

For those of you that are newer to our blog, you may not be familiar with Mr. MoonCat's and my affinity for the full moon. We are both very much in awe of the beautiful orb and feel quite a connection to it. These romantic milestones in our life weren't planned by any means, but our first date was the night of a full moon, our first kiss occurred under the next one, and he proposed to me when the moon was full.

So, in keeping with these probably not-so-much "coincidences", we planned our wedding for the night of a full moon. The photo below is "our" full moon.

One of our most special and cherished memories of that night was after everyone left and it was just the two of us (with the frogs, crickets, and other forest nightlife) dancing under this gorgeous full moon in the trees. It was beautiful and it was perfect! (Especially since just about NOTHING went right with the wedding & reception.)

I started reading up on the Blue Moon. There is a lot of mixed information out there about where the name came from. For the most part, it just means that there is a second full moon in a month. It's not really the color blue. In the majority of the years, there are only twelve full moons - one per month. Since our calendar year and the astronomical year don't always mesh, a blue moon can occur once about every 2 1/2 - 3 years. This is because a calendar MONTH is closely matched up to the lunar cycle or how long it takes the moon to go through all of its phases. The calendar YEAR is based on how long it takes the Earth to go around the sun. Since lunar and solar cycles are different, we end up with our beloved Blue Moon!

You can actually see a blue-colored moon at times as well. This occurs when there are certain atmospheric conditions and particles in the air. Some noted times are when we have volcanic eruptions such as Mt. St. Helens or Mt Krakatoa. Huge forest fires such as the Canadian one in the 1950s will also create the illusion that the moon is tinged blue.

So, enjoy this beautiful not-so blue, Blue Moon tonight. You may have to wait another twenty years or so to be able to howl at it on New Year's Eve!

Monday, December 28, 2009

"Tea, Earl Grey, Hot"

Since I'm kicking back right now with a big cup of hot tea in my hand while trying to keep Bugsy from drinking it, I thought I'd mention that I will be doing a review on some teas from Golden Moon Tea next month. I have become quite the tea addict since I found out I can't drink coffee any more. Mom tells me that as a little girl, I drank tea all the time with Gramma and while sitting in her friends' laps. I guess I just got out of the habit until now.

I am so amazed by the humongous variety of teas out there to explore. The list is almost endless. So far, one of my (and Bugsy's) absolute favorites is Earl Grey Tea . I never realized how yummy bergamot smells and tastes.... As Captain Picard always ordered, "Tea, Earl Grey, Hot." (I know, I know, I'm also a closet Trekkie... "Make it so, Number 1!")

While you're waiting to ring in the New Year and for me to get my rear in gear with the details of my taste test, you might like to find out more about the world of tea by "enrolling" in the cool Tea University from Golden Moon Tea. It's not really a school, just a collection of everything you could want to know about teas. I've learned quite a bit such as the proper way to brew your tea and what time of day certain teas are appropriate. Check it out and I'll be back soon with my review.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

A Day of Rest..Finally

Bugsy demonstrates how to relax

I hope all of you had a lovely Christmas. We did, but I'm staying home today. Not getting out of my jammies either. Our last two days seemed to be all about rushing from one place to another.

Even though it was extremely hectic, we ended up having a really good time with family and friends. Dad and I actually had fun doing his last-minute shopping, we were quite speedy and successful! Mr. MoonCat and I were able to visit with our dear family friends and eat way too much good food. Mom was feeling a little better and we had dinner with her in her hospital room. The food was pretty dang good, even her diabetic meal was appealing. She enjoyed unwrapping her presents and is anxious to get home and get sewing as I bought her a new bobbin winder among other things.

After we left Mom, we had to take care of the horses & critters at the ranch. Dad was going to be late so we didn't want him to worry about rushing home. We ended up really rushing ourselves as we had made a date with my best friend & her someday (soon I hope) hubby to see Avatar in 3D. The two of them hadn't seen it yet, but their kids had and of course, loved it. We don't spend near enough time with these two so we jump at the chance when we are all able to be in the same place at once.

I'm really glad I got to see this film at the theater instead of just waiting for the DVD like we do on a fairly regular basis. It is one that is definitely meant to be seen BIG. The 3D version was great also, but to be honest, it hurt my eyes at a couple of points. Usually when everything was going by at full speed. The 3D did really make the spectacular scenery POP. We caught several things that we missed when we saw it the first time. We did get to sit in the middle of the theater even though we got there a bit late. It seems other people were running even more behind than we were.

I'm really happy that our friends saw it with us. We were all yakking about it afterwards and they both got the same messages we did when we first saw it (see my first post HERE ). It was funny that Greg said the very same thing I did about the majority of the people in there would probably miss the points. I've really enjoyed the replies and some of the discussion that this has brought about. The biggest deal is that is a movie very well worth seeing at the theater with the ecological theme being icing on the cake for me.

Now on to New Year's.........................

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Merry Christmas

Nothing really exciting to share today, I just wanted to get in my Christmas tidings to all of my beloved readers before we get swamped tomorrow. I hope you all have lovely memory-making with your families and dear ones. Cherish the time together.

We have a really busy schedule ahead of us as Hubby & I are going to my other Mom & Pop's house (my best friend's parents) for an early Christmas lunch/dinner on Christmas Eve. That is after I meet Dad for breakfast and help him do his shopping. He cracks me up because he always Bah-Humbugs until the night before and then suddenly wants to get gifts. I should be more prepared for his un-Scrooging by now, but oh well... Then on actual Christmas Eve, Dad is going with us to hang out with Mom at the hospital for a bit. She's feeling a bit better, but still can't come home. Please keep her in your prayers. We all appreciate the warm thoughts.

Christmas Day is still up in the air. We're invited with Dad to our friend's house for what will be a fun and yummy dinner. I just don't like the idea of Mom sitting there by herself at the hospital too long on this particular holiday so I may just send Dad and the Hubby and go hang with Mom. We can watch A Christmas Story over and over again. (Love that movie!) Fortunately, the food at the hospital is pretty tasty so we won't be deprived anyway. I will probably have to sneak her one of my cookies in anyway, but we won't mention that to Nursey-poo...

Well, I'd love to leave you with photos of our lovely decorated home, but #1 - it's not really decorated, and #2 - I have no clue where my camera is! I did decorate Mom's hospital room though, so I hope that counts?
Merry Christmas my lovelies and I will be back in a few days, fatter & probably not much wiser!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Avatar - A Movie Review

Mr. MoonCat and I had lunch with Mom at the hospital and just hung out with her for a few hours on Monday. She may be coming home in the next couple of days, but we'll have to wait and see. The doctors are never around when we are, it seems to me..

So after our visit, we decided to go check out the late matinee and see Avatar. We go to the movies quite a bit and we'd been seeing trailers for this flick for months. It definitely had our interest piqued. We are both fans of Science Fiction/Fantasy films and this one received a lot of hype well before it was released. (Since you haven't ever viewed a "movie review" from me, you know I have some strong feelings about it.)

What an awesome movie! It had a great storyline, action, drama, romance, fantabulous graphics, good actors, etc. Brand new film -making technology was created for this film, in fact they delayed making it for several years because the processes and equipment in use couldn't do what creator James Cameron had envisioned for his beautiful new world and exotic creatures.

We hit on many emotions throughout this 3 hour visual treat. I laughed, sniffled, cried, cringed, became angered, sighed, rooted on heroes, booed villains, oohed and ahhed over strange animals (that's a real shocker, huh?) and was thoroughly entertained. I didn't even realize how long the film really was until I turned my cell phone back on when it was over. When the hubby and I talk about a movie we've just seen all the way home (45 min drive), you know we were impressed one way or another.

I'm not going to get into plot here or tell you how the story goes because you can read about that HERE at the official site, or better yet, GO SEE THE MOVIE. I do want to talk about the fact that there is a very strong theme and message. It is not preachy by any means and I'm really sorry to say that way too many people won't get it. You could club them over the head with it and they still wouldn't get it. We did, and I think many of the people in the theater with us felt it too. The place was almost full and they were standing & clapping at the end of the movie. I had to come home and get online right away to read more about it (and of course to find out if there are any sequels in the offing - as in TWO..woo hoo!)

I think it'll be easier to use director/writer James Cameron's words to explain his intent when writing this movie. At a convention earlier this year, he told fans that he wanted to make people think about how they react with their environment and with other people. He wanted to make a point about how humans are trashing this world and possibly condemning ourselves to a very scary future.

"I have an absolute reverence for men who have a sense of duty, courage, but I’m also a child of the ’60s. There’s a part of me who wants to put a daisy in the end of the gun barrel. I believe in peace through superior firepower, but on the other hand I abhor the abuse of power and creeping imperialism disguised as patriotism. Some of these things you can’t raise without being called unpatriotic, but I think it’s very patriotic to question a system that needs to be corralled, or it becomes Rome."
—James Cameron

We are definitely planning on going to see it again, this time in either the IMAX or 3D version that they are also showing it in. I haven't gone twice to see a film at the show since Top Gun came out and the Marine pilot I was dating took me to see it THREE times! (TMI I'm sure, but it does get my point across.) We loved this movie and highly recommend it to everyone.

(And so the FCC doesn't give me any grief, I didn't do this review for ANY kind of compensation. The photos ARE from the 20th Century Fox site. We BOUGHT our own tickets and this review is MY OPINION that I wanted to share with my friends. Thank you very much!)

One World One Heart 2010

I can't believe it's been almost a year! This event is what got my blogging career kick started. I found out about this awesome blogging extravaganza and knew I had to be a part of it. You can read my post about the 2009 event here.

I have made a couple of very dear friends because of 2009's OWOH (One World One Heart). Meeting them through this wonderful blogfest was such a gift. We have stayed in touch all year long and are building our friendships that were started in January. A couple of these fabulous women have been such great inspiration and support to me this year, I couldn't be more thankful for them. I am hoping that at some point I will get to actually meet them in the the real world. That connection is exactly why OWOH came into being. It was created to bring bloggers together who may not have found each other by any other method.

OWOH is the brainchild of Lisa Swifka of A Whimsical Bohemian. She held her first event in 2007 with about 85 or so bloggers participating. By the end of the event in January 2009, 911 bloggers were riding the Gypsy Caravan! It was such a blast going blog-hopping, basically all over the world. Lisa noted that 28 countries were represented in the 2009 event. It is such a treat to "meet" and learn about bloggers from all walks of life with so many diverse opinions, styles, and life stories. Each blog hosts a giveaway and encourages visitors to spend some time nosing around the site and then leave a comment/entry. While the giveaways aren't the purpose behind the event, it is a blast to check out all of the goodies that the generous bloggers give away as a sort of "door prize" just for visiting their blog.

This coming year's (2010) event will start on January 25th and run until February 15th. This gives participants plenty of time to spend many hours visiting fabulous blogs, entering drawings, and meeting lovely new people while at the same time reacquainting themselves with old friends. I can't wait, it'll be so much fun to travel thru blogland again!

The reason that I am posting about this international event so early is that I want to help get the word out there to other bloggers that may not be familiar with OWOH and might be interested in participating. You can click on either of the photos in this post, the button on my sidebar, or just click HERE to get more information. It's very easy to join in on the magic carpet ride and well worth the trip.


On January 25th, be sure to check back here for the giveaway post and get ready for a fantastic journey.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Sunday Selections

“What lies behind us, and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.”

-Ralph Waldo Emerson

Friday, December 18, 2009

Lovely Fabric Scraps

(Photo from the Firefly Skys blog)

I won this lovely bag of scraps on the left during the December Giveaway Day sponsored by Sew Mama Sew . The package arrived today from Firefly Skys. (Sorry about stealing the photo from her blog, but I wanted to post about it while I'm at the hospital with Mom today.)

I am really looking forward to tucking into it and seeing what kind of scrappy goodness I can create with it. Mom has already laid claim to a piece of Moda fabric with frogs on it! When she's feeling up to it, I think we'll have some great projects to share with you. Be sure to go and check out the great tutorials and crafts at Firefly Skys. Thanks for the fun!

Swag Bucks

Search & Win

I'm not usually too fond of trying to get people to sign up for different stuff online so I can get a referral, BUT this is a pretty cool deal. SWAGBUCKS is a search engine that actually pays you for your searches. You can also purchase items that you use on an everyday basis through their online mall and earn even more Swagbucks at the same time. You can get all sorts of great items including gift cards, electronics, and trips. I've already redeemed some of my points and got four giftcards through their program. (Mr. MoonCat is getting some sweet Christmas presents because I spend way too much time doing online searches!)

The best part is that the search results that you receive are from Google and Ask! So you're still getting the same results back as if you'd used either of those search engines, but you're randomly rewarded Swagbucks just for doing your everyday searches. All I did was add their toolbar on the top of my screen and use it instead of the other search boxes. It's a pretty cool system and you don't have to do anything special once you're signed up. You're normal internet usage starts to pay off immediately...

To find out more, click the picture at the top of the post or the widget at the bottom of the page.

(I was not compensated in any manner in return for this blog post. It is strictly my opinion and my choice of a post about a product I use.)

Search & Win

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Mr. Mooncat and Celie

For your viewing pleasure, a Mr. Mooncat story told in photos. (Explanation is at the bottom in case you can't fathom what in the world he's doing....)

I'm sure you're scratching your head & saying "Huh?" about now. Let me give you a breakdown:

Mr. MoonCat installed a doggy/Kitty door to the garage so we could put the litter boxes out there. (We don't use the garage for cars, just mile-high stacks of boxes, laundry, and now litter boxes.) We began having problems with Celie (Princess P) refusing to use the kitty door. She would wait for one of us to open/close the garage door for her or she'd have "accidents" during the night. (She is hubby's completely spoiled rotten little beast.)

Photo 1 was taken must minutes after it was done. Notice Petootnia using it right away, she's our explorer, aka Brave Kitty.

Photo 2 is the hubby showing Porkchop and Hammy the kitty door. Celie is in the garage - on the opposite side of the door.

Photo 3 is Mr. MoonCat "reasoning" with Miss Celie. (Notice Porkchop's rapt attention - on the toy)

Photo 4 is the view from the garage side.

Photo 5 says it all. Celie became extremely bored with the entire episode and went to sleep.

This is my life............................

(Princess P/Celie has conceded. After a few nights spent in the unheated garage, she decided to give in and use the kitty door. What a mean mommy huh?")

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

My Blanny

While unpacking some of the five bajillion (I know, I use that number a lot, but I think it's pretty accurate sometimes...) boxes from our move, I came across a very treasured possession that has been packed away for many years. It is in some serious need of repair.

These are some of the blocks in a baby quilt that my great-grandmother Bessie made for my mom's baby shower for me! So it's almost 45 years old (I'm not quite there yet). This poor thing has been drug through the ringer by me over the years and is in terrible shape. I've hauled it everywhere I've ever lived and I am ashamed that I didn't take care of it as it deserved. My only defense is that:
(1): I am overly fanatical and obsessive about washing my bedding and
(2): I didn't learn to care for fabrics until I had been out on my own for quite a while and it was already pretty trashed.

Anyhow, now that I have finally learned my lesson, I have made it my mission to do something to preserve this heirloom of mine. My great-grandma Bessie was an excellent quilter. These blocks are perfectly pieced and the hand-quilting is amazing. Her stitches are so evenly spaced, it looks like they are machined, but they weren't as she didn't use one. Her color choices were also beautiful. The thing that makes this so amazing is that she was legally blind. Her eyesight was almost non-existent so the love and painstaking care that she must have taken with this quilt is over the top. I can't imagine how many hours she poured into it.

I haven't really decided exactly how I'm going to go about rescuing some of these blocks. I can't decide if I want to take some of the best ones and frame them for the sewing room or if I want to preserve the majority of it as a wall-hanging. Whatever I do, I'd like to make sure that they are protected from abuse like that which I put it through. The material is fairly fragile so it definitely won't be a bed quilt any longer. I'm still quite new to the quilting world so I really don't have any more ideas than that for now.

Do any of you have suggestions on what I should do? I'd appreciate the help.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Green Aussie Sheep

I am horrible at keeping track of things. I won this fabulous prize package destined for my nephew at Halloween and am just now getting the post done about it as I get ready to wrap his gifts. Please forgive me Sally. I was tickled pink to have been drawn for this little board book "Where is the Green Sheep" and coordinating book bag. My nephew and his father are very into sheep and the little dude is learning the love of books. Isn't it darling? Sally generously offered to embroider nephew's name on his bag for me. I think he'll love it for Christmas. Thank you so much Sally!

Since winning, I've also found nephew a little sheep ornament and a piggy bank that I am painting green to match the one in the book. I love finding presents for the loved ones in our lives, especially when I can keep it centered on a theme. Every year I get or make everyone an ornament of some kind that I put their names and the year on.

Be sure to check out Sally's blog, here. Lots of crafty Aussie goodness and a great sense of humor on the side.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Giveaway Day WINNER

And the winner of these two critters is:

True Random Number Generator

Min: 1
Max: 65
Result: 37
Powered by RANDOM.ORG

#37 belongs to Bridgett.

Bridgett said...
I like the ostrich and the squirrel...they make me smile. :)

Congratulations Bridgett. I've sent you an email. Please respond with your address & these little lovelies will be on their way to you!

Thank you to everyone who took the time to come by and check us out. I'm sorry that I didn't get a chance to respond to each and every comment, but I did read and enjoy all of them. I appreciate your feedback and opinions on our cards and photos.

I hope those of you that are new to us will stick around and see what we have coming up in the near future. For the lovely readers who've been with us from the beginning, thanks for your continued support.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Favorite Guest

We've decided to not let our current house guest go home. We are kidnapping her.

We are enjoying the heck out of her visit. She is fun and entertaining. We don't have to cook for her, she eats what we put in front of her happily. She doesn't complain, doesn't care what the house looks like or what time we roll out of bed in the morning. She doesn't pass judgement on anything we say or do and just enjoys being with us. I've decided to keep her, she is the perfect company!

Meet Abby:

Abby (aka Lady of the Abbey) is my sister's newest addition. Sis calls my dogs her "dogphews", but I'm not quite sure how to combine niece and dog.

Miss Abby is visiting her Auntie and Unk while Sis and the family are at Disneyland this week. Mr. MoonCat and I were supposed to go on the trip with them, but with Mom's health so poor (she is back in the hospital again as the fluid has built back up in her lungs very quickly), we couldn't be that far away from her. We insisted Sis continue with the trip as it is #1 nephew's first time with Mickey Mouse. #1 niece hadn't been in 10 years so she was due also. We're very bummed to have missed it, but there will be other chances to go play with them, hopefully soon.

Little pooch felt right at home the first day she arrived. Pretty much took over the house and all of the inhabitants. Unfortunately, Porkchop hates her. His little nose is out of joint because Abby likes to sit on my lap just as much as he does. He can bully the other cats & dogs, but not Abby Sue. It's been a nightly battle to see who gets there first and can claim the space for the evening. So far they're 2-2.

Porkchop hunkering down and vying for position on my lap

So, we're moving. No forwarding address. Sorry Sis, Abby decided to go with us. You can't have her back! (Porkchop is sending you directions now...)

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Dec Giveaway Day - Dec 2, 2009


Giveaway Day is here! SewMamaSew is once again coordinating an international blogging giveaway day. Earlier this year in May, hundreds of bloggers participated in this fabulous event. Readers get a chance to check out great "new to them" blogs and take a chance at winning some fabulous prizes. The bloggers get to have fun hosting a giveaway and are given the chance to be introduced to some new readers/followers.

That's all great, you're saying..So what can I win?? Well dear readers, old and new.. MoonCat Farms will be giving away 2 note cards from our shop - MoonCat Farms Marketplace. The winner will be given the choice of any two cards.

To enter, you just need to go to the shop here and then come back and let us know which two cards you would choose if you're our lucky winner. (You can always change your mind later.)

The contest will be open until midnight PST on December 6th. We will use the Random Generator to choose the lucky winner. Once we post the name, they will have 3 days to contact us with their shipping info or we will draw a new winner. We will ship internationally so all are welcome to enter.

Just be sure that we can contact you either through your blog or by leaving your email address in your contact info (if you leave it in the following format, you'll eliminate the risk of the spambots getting your email address): janedoe (at) yahoo (dot) com

Here's just a few of our recent additions to the shop that you might choose:

Good luck to everyone and thank you so much for coming by to see our little corner of the world. We hope you'll become a regular and keep up with the Meanderings of MoonCat Farms..

Giveaway alert

Starting tomorrow, December 2nd we will be participating in the December Giveaway Day hosted by Sew Mama Sew ... Be sure to come back for more details and enter to win prizes from MoonCat Farms and HUNDREDS of other blogs......