I Love This Man, originally uploaded by Vera*Smith.
Thanksgiving has come and gone. It was a wonderful day, but didn't last nearly long enough. It never does.

All of my husband's siblings were here with their spouses and my daughter and her crew were here, too. And my mama; my sweet 90 year old mama. I didn't take many photos and since I don't have permission from my in-laws, think it's best not to post the pix of them. But what a joy to have all six of them together in a picture.

Unfortunately Friday and Saturday found me flat on my back. I've never suffered with back problems, but I must have done something wrong because I could barely move.

All day Friday. All day Saturday. I suffered with severe back pain. I felt just find except for my lower back and hips and I was miserable in bed. And I discovered I'm not a very good patient.

But this man. This man took such good care of me; coming and asking from time to time if I needed anything. Rubbing essential oils on my back and making up capsules for me. Preparing the bath for me. He did whatever I wanted or needed. In that regard I am a good patient. I'm not very demanding. I prefer to be left alone. But I REALLY prefer to be pain-free!

Guess what else he did - he even put away all the Thanksgiving decorations, without me asking or hinting for him to do so! Yep - he put them all away in the Rubbermaid totes and put them in the attic. And you must remember, we live in a very old place and the access to the attic is nothing more than drop down stairs on the porch!

And you know what else? He brought down all the Christmas totes! All 10 of them! (I thought there were 14, but he only found 10). He wiped them clean and sorted them by room so they are all ready for me when I'm ready to deal with them. Isn't that pretty wonderful of him?

And the wonderfulness continued. I woke up, once again barely able to move and stayed home from church, spending more time on the couch than in bed and really started feeling much better. I was very glad because I had a Christmas photo shoot scheduled for 2 o'clock and it involved folks who were in town only for the holidays. And what did Mr. Wonderful do? He offered to be my assistant and carry the camera bag, step-stool and props! I didn't even have to ask - he offered to be the pack mule!

All because of him, I was able to keep my obligation and hopefully grandparents will get a wonderful photo of their precious granddaughters!

So, that's what has been going on at the Cozy Little Cabin. I've been an invalid and he is still, after all these years, my hero. My very own Mr. Wonderful




This is a rather disjointed post, but I'm feeling rather disjointed and with good reason!

For starters I decided to rearrange the dining room. Because of all the windows looking out into the trees, I always assumed it would be my favorite room, but it hasn't been. I decided what needed to be done was to move the armoire and chairs. Christy came and helped me and made some very good suggestions; one being that since the armoire wouldn't fit nicely between the windows, to place it at the end of the dining table instead, and move the tall, slim rosewood piece between the windows instead. Voila! That did the trick. I don't have many photos to post - hopefully will take care of that soon! I'm beginning to understand why I'm more and more drawn to very neutral/white rooms. . . just look at the busy-ness of the windows and trees!
But even so - I still very much like the new arrangement

details of hutch moved between windows

So - I spent much of the week rearranging and moving pix, etc. Instead of preparing for Thanksgiving!

AND, get this, hubby brought home 10 GALLONS of pears. Yep - he sure did! So besides rearranging a room, I also made up 15 jars of pear preserves! Instead of preparing for Thanksgiving!

Monday was youngest son's birthday and because of the weather, didn't have internet access in his part of Norway. I think it was the first time I have NOT been able to talk to him on his birthday. The first time in 28 years and I couldn't talk to him. So I was sad. Sad and disorganized with a messy kitchen for much of the week!

And there was a haircut and time spent w/my mom and some volunteer business I had to take care of. And of course I had to mop floors and shampoo carpet! The point being - I haven't done any cooking and no real holiday preparation.

But today id different. I'm cooking: baking cornbread so I can make my 90 year old mom's dressing recipe. Sauteing onions and celery and an apple. Eggs are hard-boiled to stuff them tomorrow. Turkey is thawing. . . hubby is going to deep-fry it tomorrow. Doesn't a fried turkey sound disgusting? Well, it did to me, too, until our oldest son prepared last year's turkey that way. Like he said when we recently skyped - "it's now a tradition" - so we're deep frying! And there's ham. And lots of folks are coming and they're all bringing food with them.

I'm most excited because all of my husband's siblings and their spouses will be here. We're all in our 50s and 60s and it will be good to all be together. So much better than waiting to get together at someone's funeral! AND my daughter and son-in-law will be bringing their 3 foster boys with them. It's always nice to have young people around!

To top it off - the weather is suppose to be sunny and 70 degrees, which is so much better than last year, which started out cold and rainy. In spite of that, it will cool down fast and we're planning to have a campfire and have a wienie roast.

Oh - and hubby came home today with - - - you want to take a guess? More pears! 5 gallons! OK - time to go find a pear cobbler recipe!

May your Thanksgiving Day be blessed . . .



I wrote yesterday about how much I enjoyed having the windows open during the day.

It was a wonderful treat, considering how miserably hot the summer was.

Now, don't get me wrong, I LOVE warm weather and I do NOT, do NOT , do NOT like being cold, but this past summer was just awful with an unbearable combination of record-breaking temps (50+ consecutive days of 100+ temps) combined with a 100 year drought. I don't like it hot and I don't like it cold; I guess you can say I'm sorta' like Goldilocks when it comes to the weather!

Because of the hot and dry summer we've been in a burn ban for many months now and since we live in a rural area we usually do quite a bit of burning. We pay for once a week garbage removal, but branches, shrubs, trees, and leaves (oh - do we have leaves) just get burned. And since we recently took down one fence and moved it near the street, we have more than the usual amount of branches, brush, and "stuff" to burn. I gotta' admit it - the cozy little cabin hasn't been looking too spiffy with brush piles all over the place.

But then yesterday I saw a beautiful sight. No, not the beautiful autumnal trees here in east TX,

See how most of the State is in a burn ban? It is desperate here, folks. But, but, but our little county is NOT in red! The burn ban was lifted yesterday and I did dances and whoops and all kinds of celebrating because I was SO EXCITED! I called our county judge's office to make sure. Yep - the County Commissioners had lifted ban yesterday morning. Oh the rejoicing Peggy (judge's secretary) and I did over the phone!

So you know what we did when my husband came home. . . we burned, baby, burned! The trash barrel got torched. The campfire pit got set ablaze. And more brush was added to it throughout the evening. Of course we had the water hose at the ready - - - and wet down the tree canopy which is most likely pretty darn dry. But we got rid of a sizable amount of brush and I am just so excited! Oh we still have plenty to burn, but it was so nice to be able to make a start!

And guess what? During the night we got the tiniest amount of rain which is supposedly a prelude to a good thunderstorm later on today. Here's hoping and praying the weathermen are right because Thanksgiving just isn't Thanksgiving without a campfire in the evening!

Rejoicing right here in the cozy little cabin in my neck of the woods!



After the dreadfully hot summer we had, which included many, many weeks of 100+ temps, even getting to 114 one day, I'm really enjoying this mild November day. Here it is, the 14th, and the house is opened up because it's going to be close to 80 degrees today.

A breeze is blowing through the windows. And the autumn leaves are fluttering to the ground.

And there's lunch on the stove. . . and I got to sit at the little kitchen table in my little kitchen with my husband.

And enjoy lunch together.

In the midst of preparing a hot lunch, I was rearranging furniture and rooms.

And doing laundry.

And the cat wanted to go out.

And I was overcome with joy at the very thought of how perfect my life is.

Of course it is dotted with sorrows and disappointments, but all in all, I live a blessed life and I started humming "Our House". Do you remember it? Hubby and I sang it to each other when it came out in 1970.

And we're still singing it.

It's even more true today than way back then.

And remember - the song isn't about the house.

It's about the home.



Oh yes, I've been gone for a L O N G time! I'll catch up later, but for now, with the temperatures getting oh-so-chilly, I want to share something with you: a recipe for homemade Cream Of Something Soups. So many casseroles call for a cream soup, which I don't always have on hand. I also don't much care for all the ingredients I can't pronounce and quite frankly, it doesn't really taste all that good to me if I were to eat it all by itself!

So along comes onceamonthmom.com with an easy recipe which calls for ingredients I usually have on hand! And it has an easy to read chart to assist in making dietary changes.

I made the Cream of Mushroom Recipe, using portabello mushrooms; almond milk and Earth Balance instead of dairy; and Frontier Herb's *Beef* broth instead of a meat broth, making it completely vegan. This was without a doubt the very best Mushroom Soup I've ever eaten!

I'm not familiar with copyrights and all that so instead of providing you with the recipe, just hop on over to her website and give it a try. And while there, check out all her other great recipes and tips.

Here it is for the soup recipe: