Thursday, February 6, 2014

Too Many Grapes

 -------------

Today I had a discussion with my husband about one of those Facebook posted quiz type of things that involved picking a photo of different doors.  I picked one and quickly looked up my "reading".  I thought, oh okay and went on.  My husband had this sent to him and he picked a door.  He asked me what door I picked and I told him.  His next comment surprised me "boy they really nailed you".  Confused (because I already forgot what my door had to say about me...I usually let these things kind of run off)  he proceeded to tell me what my door said about me. As it turned out he was right.  He goes on that I always have my fingers in something.  Something you want to do.  Doing something that matters. You juggle a full bowl. Wow.

A recent incident, which had nothing to do with the story of the doors, came to mind.  I love grapes and I was getting down to the grapes that are at the bottom of the bag.  I kept grabbing and I kept loosing them.  No matter how hard I tried, I couldn't seem to grab the amount I wanted. I realized it wasn't working. While I was trying to pick up many grapes, my fingers were busy holding what few I had in my hand.  Taking the bag out I opened up my hand and placed each grape, one at a time, into my open cupped hand. 

It really was working too hard.  I was not finding the answer. I was trying to push those grapes into my fisted hand.  If I had relaxed my hand, I would be able to put each grape in my palm; in a planned and deliberate manner.  My life is like this.  Feel free to slap my hand.

Several years ago I decided to start a "bucket list".  Nothing way out there just things like visiting Martha's Vineyard.  Another was going to Bar Harbor Maine.  Being a New Englander it was something every New Englander needs to do.  Another was trying oil painting.  One turned out better than the other.  But, it was planned.

When I start overloading anything it catches up.  I am pretty good about evaluating my time (after years of juggling, I am better) but reining in my desires is another thing.  I desire to have a full bucket of things!  I am not saying that people should not live this way, only you can judge that.  What I am saying is that when you get to a certain age you need to realize you are not a young woman who has unlimited time in front of me.  This is me, you may be perfectly fine and going like a Ever Ready Bunny.  I cannot and in fact I really never could. 

Back to the grapes.  When I lessened my grip I was able to get even more grapes than I wanted! 

Going through life we will have a few grapes that roll off.  Looking at my life I will always have things I want to try to do.  Things I may fail, but I need to remember nothing comes to you without trying.  For those times when I have reached failure (I really have to tell you about my venture into oil painting) I can dust myself off and go on. For me, success was not necessarily, but trying was.

I am a child of God, and I have been led by His leanings.  I have come to the conclusion that I needed to reach out to be the person God wants me to be and the paths He will lead me down.  Some paths will turn out great, some will be learning lessons (like oil paint in my hair) It is when those situations are looked upon as lessons, you can smile.  No failures, just an ambition to try.

So, friends take each idea and dream (grapes) and place them in your open hands (or maybe in one of those buckets) and be deliberate.  What comes out may not be what you planned but is what you need.  

----------------



Wednesday, January 22, 2014


Wednesday January 22, 2014

Here I am!  Although I would do better to say Here am I. 

I have been a terrible web gal and I could go on with a litany of reasons why I have not kept up. But, I feel I am on the rim of something and I am beginning anew!

I have been busy doing all kinds of things which are not really "bucket list" (although I do have one of those) but perhaps more as a "cup full".  Small task at a time, to establish something and follow through to the end.  This from a gal who had her last post a year ago!

This year I think even my doctor decided that I needed some changes.  Hope.  Yup, I have always been a quite positive person but when I got the Fibromyalgia it really took me for a loop.  I am learning to live with it, although I much rather live without it!  

My doctor suggested I see a Health Coach.  Well, it turned to be the best journey for me!  I found some things about myself I had no clue about.  Maybe because sometimes just putting one foot in front of the other has been difficult.  I began to really dig deep and do some changes.  

I had four things to work on for the next four months, or at least begin.

1.  To paint.  I am very artistic and belong to two decorative arts chapters but I have not really painted in two years.  I came to the understanding that it was because it was painful enough before (I could put myself down for two days if I painted all day) I was actually afraid of more pain.  Very unlike me.  I usually say "pain is relative".  But, amazingly, during painting I feel nothing.  I have always prayed before painting and that even stopped.  So, that was my first task.  I made painted ornaments for the church fair.  Yes it hurt like the dickens later, but I did it anyway and THAT is what I need to remember.  And I also found out I was terribly out of practice. LOL

2.  To write.  I have in mind a bible study and I am also working on a work of fiction.  Write in my blog!   You may say too much.  But, I multitask well.  I am often reading 3 books at the same time.  As long as the genre is different I have no problem.

3.   To keep my body as flexible as I can - chair yoga here I come!

4.   Cook creatively and maybe enter a contest or two.  I have won two contest, one from Hannaford Grocery which was for cash and I was able to help stock up my church's pantry.  It was a gift for both of us.

So, as one of my painter friends does...this year I am picking a word to focus on.  I know there will be setbacks and some stalls but HOPE seems well, hopeful.

I hope to be more patient with myself
I hope to touch someone for the better
I hope to be the best wife I can be
I hope and pray that God use me
I hope that all through the pain, I still see wonder and blessing in life.

This was pretty powerful for me.

Every year at Easter I have been known to "die".  To allow myself to experience the rebirth of who God intends me to be.  This year won't be any different.

This has been my journey thus far.

I would love to challenge anyone who is reading this.  To give themselves an accomplishment (with a broad stroke) to achieve.  

Finally, pick a word that has tickled your brain lately.   Who knows, you may actually find a new way to live.

Peace
Ginny

******

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

My How Time Does Fly

Well, finally after having spent two days to figure out what google account I had associated with Renderings I finally am back "in"

It was a reflective Christmas with much time for fun, friends and family.

So many I am speaking with are thinking the same...maybe it's the age, maybe it's the economy, maybe it is a greater awareness.   But, we all agree we have made measures to reduce, reduce, reduce.

Family sharing, making memories and not being so stressed that we forget about the whole reason we have this season has become much bigger a priority.  Maybe that is where need to look at our lives.... in our priorities.

When Chris and I first got married we spent an hour opening gifts to each other.  Horrified that I am now (of course this is over 30 years ago) I can remember being miserable because he could not find this particular necklace I wanted.  It just colored the whole day, night and season.  I look at who I was then and who I am now and wonder "where did she come from?"

I do have to say it was a learning experience though.  I stepped back after Christmas that year and said I was quite the whiny little wife.  I was selfish and how DARE I take that kind of attitude with 1.  A man who does nothing but try to please and 2. Making it about me.

I changed.

Even now I cringe at the old me.  I thank God every day that he has taught me appreciation, being in the moment, acceptance and above all grace.

These days we exchange a few gifts and make our candlelight meal on Christmas Even the "event" at home and the late night service at church our Heavenly dessert. 

It has made life so easy and has taken away the pressures of the "world" and has given me an appreciation of that small babe who gave his all for me.

Oh it has been a journey.  We are finally getting the families more on board.  Making memories is much more fun and appreciated than a token gift.  Getting together for lunch during the year is such a delight without having a "holiday" to solidify it.

So dear ones I ask this January you reflect upon next Christmas season (which starts earlier and earlier) and start taking those baby steps (especially if you have children) to truly make "Jesus the reason for the season". 

For a peace that passes all understanding, you will not regret it.

****
**

Friday, May 27, 2011

Crying over Spilt Milk Cake

In my adventurous nature, I decided to try a new recipe; some thing rather different for me.  I have had the recipe once before, but mine wasn’t quite the same.  The demon was called Tres Leches (Milk Cake) which means three milk cake.

Now there were three different versions on the net.  I tried the one that I thought looked interesting (I can see the horns on that devil now).  It has whole milk, sweetened condensed milk and evaporated milk and not to mention cream.  Now this cake is SUPPOSED to be moist and can I tell you mine was a bit like a brick? Okay give me some mortar and I will build a wall with this thing.  It tasted fine, but dense, more like a 10-"pound" cake.

Not that I didn’t try.  There was a whole can of condensed milk and a small can of evaporated milk that you pour on the cake after it is baked.  I stabbed the cake with gusto and with anticipation. I was loving the custard sort of taste the milk made.

We even waited until the next day to make sure all the ingredients were soaked in well.  I took the cake out and whipped my cream with powdered sugar and frosted.  For a extra nice look I added roasted cinnamon on top.  It looked great.  It tasted okay (I say this in a generous way), but it was not light and fluffy at all.  It was sort of moist and not at all what I was expecting.  So today I poured more milk over the top.  We will see if it taste better.

Fortunately, my husband is a great “experiment eater”.  He liked the cake even if he had to slice it up! What a guy.  I suspect he is waiting until this cake is done so I can do the recipe from the Pioneer Woman website called “knock you naked brownies”.  The brownies sound so great, and dessert like.  But I will absolutely refuse to get naked!  Unless, of course it is 88 degrees again!  Wait maybe it is like knocking your socks off... only more so.... I better think on this.  Maybe hubby and I should do a trial run! LOL  Anyway, he finds redeeming factors in just about anything I cook or bake.  So, even a as dense as a brick, it was pronounced "good".

As it turned out, I picked the first day of higher temps.  We’ve been getting temps in the 60’s (unusual) and suddenly we jumped passed the 70’s right into the 80’s.  It is was 86 and hot hot hot!  Ok, now it was a labor not just of love but of sweat.  Geeze.

So, what do you do when your disappointed in a dessert you spent good money to make and something you were drooling over?

I guess I will try another one of the recipes, one with less than 9-( count ‘em) eggs.  The horrible part of the whole deal was the eggs, they had to be separated.  If you ask my husband I can break a egg yolk just by looking at it.  A master of fried eggs sunny side up, I am not.  But, thankfully they all came out great.  Of course that could be attributed to the fresh eggs from one of my church friends.  Some were a lovely shade of blue.  Made me think....hmmmmmmm why color eggs when you can buy’em that way.  I digress....as usual.

Well, that is all I am  gong to say on the subject of Spilt Milk Cake.  Live and learn I say.  I also live by the mantra “Change is Good” so I am going to try this recipe again, when my cholesterol goes down (only kidding, my cholesterol is great)

Until then, I will  grab a glass of milk and a bunch of Oreo cookies and pat myself on the back for finding a delicious alternative until I brave this recipe again.

**
*

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Death by Chocolate Cookie, or Death by a Chocolate Cookie

Today I started out fine.  I pulled my stick of butter out to make Baker’s Death By Chocolate Cookie that hubby has been drooling for since last week.   This was as I was going through about 10 years worth of recipe clippings to decide as to what to keep and what to throw away.  (If you think I am kidding, I am not)  I am the world’s number One recipe hoarder.  Anything I like or think I might like I rip, tear, beg and pry out of cold dead hands.  It is a really odd hobby.

Anyway, hubby sees this recipe and goes a little nuts.....so I said today I would make the cookies (since yesterday I got chastised pretty good for not having done them) but I found I have every Baker’s chocolate except the one I need.  I am so dern frustrated.

So frustrated I decide to take that room where I still have boxes of those recipes and start cleaning, and cleaning and cleaning.   Ok, he’s gonna take one whiff of the stale doggie air and say where are my cookies!  “But, look honey!  See what I have accomplished today!”

What I have “accomplished” is to wreck not just one room, but two rooms and a hallway!  Cleaning dusting, finding stuff for the church rummage sale and Ebay.  No difference to that nose of his, nooooooooo.  What he will do is pout and mention his lack of chocolate cookies, with nuts of course.

Actually, he is a peach of a guy and doesn’t ask for much, except home made cookies.  He was very spoiled by mom (my Mom in Love!) to have home made treats all the time.  My mom’s idea of dessert was a chocolate pudding mix put into a Keebler graham cracker crust and Cool Whip.  We were not dessert people.  So, when we married and he had these expectations I was a bit surprised.  After all I was of the generation of “I am woman hear me roar”.  When it comes to him I more of a mewer.

At Christmas I will make batches and batches of different cookies for friends and I always freeze some for him.  He eats them through the year.  Sometimes he just gets a yen and then there is the rub.....

So, tomorrow I will go shopping and buy what I need to make cookies.  Today I took out my frustrations, making more of a mess than anything else.  And, if he should ask about those Baker’s One Bowl Death By Chocolate Cookies tonight (and com’on he will) I will tell him to check out my blog..

Meantime for those of you who DO have the ingredients here is the recipe.

BAKER’S ONE BOWL
DEATH BY CHOCOLATE COOKIE

Prep 15 min
Bake 12 min

2 pgs. (16 squares) Baker’s Semi-sweet Baking Chocolate, Divided
1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/4 cup of butter or margarine (I like unsalted)
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 cup flour
1/4 tsp. Baking powder
2 cups chopped nuts (gotta have nuts!)

Heat oven to 350.
Coarsely chop 8 squares (1 package) of the chocolate, set aside.
Microwave remaining 8 squares of chocolate in large microwaveable bowl HIGH for 1-2 minutes.  Stir until chocolate is melted and smooth.  Stir in sugar, butter, eggs and vanilla.  Stir in flour and baking powder.  Stir in reserved chopped chocolate and nuts.  Drop by 1/4 cupfuls (yeah cupfuls) onto ungreased cookie sheet
BAKE 12-13 minutes or until cookies are puffed and feel set to the touch.
Cool on cookie sheet for 1 minutes.  Transfer to wire rack and cool completely.  Makes about 1-1/2 dozen cookies.


And for fabulous other recipes from Baker’s go here http://www.kraftbrands.com/bakerschocolate/home.aspx and you too can drool!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

A Heart Full of Holes

A thought came to me today.... I have not just a Holy heart but a heart full of holes.

We lost our 14 year old dog about a week ago.  It was a sad situation, but in my heart I have known that we always have given our fur babies the best in life.  The best medical care, the bestest love!  But, yet there is a hole in my heart named Cuddles right now.

Life is sort of like this.  We go through, being born with a whole heart full waiting to be filled by the love of a parent, who teaches us to fill our own heart.  Then life begins to take little heart shape pieces out.  For each loss, for each hurt we, in our humanness begin to live with a heart full of pieces that have been removed by sadness, grief, hurt and suffering.  Yet we go on. 

A funny thing about the heart, it hurts, but it goes on.  After a while we learn to live with the holes and sometimes even find things to help heal and fill them.  But, that is not to say that these heart holes still don’t remain.

Yesterday a dear man from our church passed to be with the Lord.  I am sure his family has large gapping holes to deal with.  He was the kind of guy who you could not forget.  His smile was contagious his courage impressive.  But, yesterday his own heart was fully healed and created whole again by the absolute recreation and reconciliation with God.

I do not compare the love of an animal to the love of a human.  I am just stating the human condition as I see it, feel it.

I take comfort in that someday my heart will be made fully whole and lifted into absolute glowing, for an eternity no less.  All those pieces that have been carried to the other side, will be united in me in wholeness and glory.

As we come into Holy week I have a chance to remind myself that, this is but a human vessel, and that it is the love that goes on.  The remembrances I have will hold me until I can once again be united with those whom I have lost, and have taken a part of my heart with them.  Reunited in love and in wholeness because of a sacrifice made over 2000 years ago.

Sometimes it is hard to get your head wrapped around this.  But, there are things, emotions, that cannot be denied and cannot be fully understood and comprehended until the moment of reconciliation.  I am not to really fully understand, only to hold faith that all that I believe is.

My favorite bible verse is Hebrews 11:1  Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

I cannot see my soul, yet I know that it is there.  I cannot see the hurts, yet I know that they are there.  I cannot see Jesus, but I know he is there.

In the journey of life we learn to cope and if we are lucky we find ourselves partnered in faith to sustain us.  It is there, we need only accept it.  Our journey may be long, it may be short.  It may be filled with a heart full of holes, with scars and healing.  The heart can find peace, but it will only find full rest and restitution at the feet of our Holy One.

So is my heart whole?  Yes and no.  No because suffering can leave it’s mark and yes because at the same time it is protected and reassured through my belief that someone holds me in eternity.

I guess I hadn’t started to be so theological in the beginning of this post, but today as I wait on information on services of my dear church friend it came to me ......

*
**

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Noshing on Gum & Wearing Pretty Pink Robes



I sit here still in my bathrobe feeling guilty and lazy.  It was one of those nights and although I got up at 8 I still have not gotten into the day.   I wonder why.  I am noshing on gum, until lunch so I won’t eat the refrigerator clean. 

It’s not that I haven’t been busy.

I turned the kitchen table around, only to realize I liked it the way it was.  I had some quality time with the pets, always a good thing right?  Well, I am convincing myself that they love their “mummy” in a flowing pink bathrobe that makes me feel like someone out of a Harry Potter film.

I’ve let the dogs in and out three times already.  The sun is out, and they know it.  It is a dirty little secret that even when it is only 50 degrees in the sun, they feel constricted by the house too.  My only regret is the in/out of it all.  I stare out before I open the door because it would be a horror if the neighbors caught me in my jammies and big pink bathrobe.

One dog pounces out to take on the world, the other in a daze of confusion stands and wonders where the heck she was going.  She is our dear one with “doggy Alzheimer's”.  She often will go in a room and stand, as if to say, why am in here?  Or will circle around the large coffee table, not being able to go backwards or turn around and insist you move anything in her path so she may continue on her routine and journey.  Or the fact that she get's herself into these situations she is not sure of.  LIke the time we opened the dog gate, where she was standing on the end with the hinge.  She could not figure how to get out of the corner when the gate was opened and just looked helpless as to say “why am I in this prison?”

I don’t do this often (spend the morning with my jammies), well at least not often enough that I don’t feel guilty about being in a big pink flying robe.  The idea I might eat lunch this way gives me the heebee geebees.  What person eat’s lunch in their big pink robe? 

I can remember years ago (yea I am that old) that my mom always wore “house dresses”.  Another word for casual, I don't care who sees me but this is acceptable behavior.   Basically they were dresses that were usually made of cotton, often with short sleeves and buttons down the front.  Although, in the summer the sleeveless ones were acceptable too.  Now, she would go from her jammies right into this dress and wear it for days!  She was of a generation that didn’t waste anything.  Time, clothes or soap.  Not that she wasn’t clean, she was, but it was not unusual for her to wear only two dresses a week.  So, what is the dif?

The difference is no one wears house dresses any more.  Ah, it was like rolling out of bed, literally.  Take your dress into the bathroom with you and viola! You are ready to face the day! 

Sweats are always a great alternative.  Yea I could get a pair of sweats on, but then I would have to change before this evening because hubby and I are going out...people see me in sweats???  I don’t mean the cute ones, no the fleece warm as I can get ones.  The ones with paint stains on them.....

The gum noshing is going good.  It makes me realize I am getting a bit board.  “does your chewing gum loose it’s flavor on the bedpost overnight?  If your mother says don’t chew it....” Awe, gee, that is going to be in my head all day.

A quick sniff to the pink sleeve... yea it doesn’t smell yet.  Robes actually fight not to be washed, did you know that?  Yeah, they fly all over to avoid the brutal and harshness of the washing machine.  But, it got a good washing just last week, even with the terrible fight to get it all in the washer with the towels. Robes and towels, they actually hate each other.  At least that is what I tell myself to avoid washing the “big pink thing” all too often.

Well, I guess it is time to shower and wake up.  Put the body and mind in gear.  I will let go of my robe with a flare before then, hang it on the knob in the bathroom for this evening and wonder what would I ever do without it.  Now where can I spit out this gum???
*
**
*

Monday, March 7, 2011

Easter, a Season of Surprises

Every year I look at the time of Lent as a time of renewal, reflection and renewal.  Easter for me is just not candy eggs and little girls in pretty frocks and women in flowered hats.

I have been brought up to believe in the wonder of Christmas, but as an adult I realized the power of Easter, when we are ALL born again.

It is easy to find yourself engulfed in the power of Christmas.  It is a season of hope, faith, peace.  It was through this birth that we Christians have become a “people”.  All is calm, all is bright.  But, it is during those tender times I remember the phrase about Mary, Jesus’ mother.  “she took all these things unto her heart and pondered them”.  Did she know of Calvary?  Did she know that she would loose her son, in order to gain a Son?

Every Christmas I shed a tear...... I cry sometimes because I realize I am the last of my immediate family.  I cry sometimes because I feel like an orphan.  But, I always cry because I know the fate of this little boy, all for the sake of me.

Easter is not one day, it is a season.  Lent.  Have we wrapped our heads around this?  In my younger years I practiced the discipline of denial.  Oh, how I held off on sweets until Easter and then gobbled up every one of those chocolate eggs!  Now, as a person of mature faith I find that Easter is a perfect season to give, to change, to pray what direction God wants my resources to go?  Can I not bring some sunshine?  A phone call, a card a kind word or two.  Make a donation to something or someone.  Invite someone to lunch?  This, for me, is sharing God. 

How do you explain the God who loves me like no other?

The only human thought I can connect Calvary with is one of a parent and child.  Would you not give all you have to save your child?  Would you not demonstrate your love in appreciation?

Surprise yourself this Season of Lent.  Take quiet time and reflect.  I mean really reflect.  Take the fullness of the season and pray for God to reveal how he wants you “walk the walk”.  During this time of self reflection, touch another with the power of the Holy Spirit that walks within you.

I lead a lot of Bible study classes and one of my favorite questions “are you a Christmas person?”  I am not speaking of the obvious, but hinting toward the spiritual.  Even more so, I ask of myself “am I an Easter Person?”  How do you thank someone for a sacrifice such as this?  You can’t.  What you can is do things in the spirit of love, faith, and peace.

All I ask is that you look into your heart and remember that Easter begins with Lent.  A season to cry, change and yes celebrate!
How can you share this?  Anyway you can.  Big or small.  Taking small steps of kindness to others, while wondering where God is going to lead you.

On Easter day I stand in the pew and during the fist chorus of “Christ the Lord Has Risen Today” I use to cry because of the harshness of mankind actually killed the Son.  Now I cry in thankfulness.  I will be with Christ in eternity.  God’s gift to man, that we should love for an eternity and be loved.

My, my what a surprise.  How can you not feel blessed?

Thursday, March 3, 2011

What is it with Women and Their Purses?

What is it with Women and Their Purses?

Can anyone tell me?  I use to be quite the hound when it came to shopping for purses.  I was always looking for the one which spoke to me.... here pick me....I can hold your sunglasses in a very special place..... your phone will never get lost in me..... come to me.......


It was 4 purses a year before I started spending some good money at LL Bean for purses and some trendy purses (with pockets for everything) called Baggallini’s  Yes, they are wonderful for traveling, strap them over the shoulder and you are stylin' girl!!!  If you are on the lookout for them try AAA. Of all places, they have a small selection of them and they are reduced in price for about 20% less.  

I picked out a wild lime green Baggallini for my last cruise, which my hubby claimed to be as bright as a neon light in the dark.  My next one was a larger one in a dusty blue, much more to his liking (like I really cared....when he starts carrying one he can have a say! LOL)  I did get him back recently by buying a new wallet...in neon green although a friend calls it "frog" green.  It is very easy to spot in the bottom of my purses!



I pretty much was settled into my LL Bean kidney shape, good for the back, lacking any great colors and costing way too much.  But, still not being a slave to fashion (just purses) I was in the mood to brighten my day!  Then I figure, take a ride to "see what's out there".


Not one to turn away a bargain I spotted a leather $40 purse at Kohls.  I had some discount tickets and that puppy ended up costing me a grand total of $7 when I was done.  It is neutral and will take me into the spring and again in the fall.  Okay, I have never been a clothes trend setter but I am a purse snob.  I am willing to pay $70 for quality, but $7 for a leather purse... that sucker was calling my name from the front doors...... come.....come....come......I'm yours....


Hubby was surprised (pleasantly he didn't moan because I was "buying" something I really didn't need) but wait....who uses a black purse when they are just aching for spring??  Tell me???  I am so ready for spring.  The past winter here in New England has been sloppy, cold and long!  I needed a little something to infuse HOPE!  Yes, those crocuses will come up by May (that is an exaggeration) and I will see grass again someday.  Like a good husband, he caved.  "It's rather nice" was my approval and a virtual pat on the back for a job well done in being so shopping savvy.


So my big old backpack is upstairs for next year.  It holds the world, just not my heart...at least for the moment.


Yes, shopping for purses can be a defining moment.  Are you making a statement?  Going for function over style, or does style trump everything?  Is it a large purse (very popular now) or something big enough only for a cell phone and loose change?


Ah the dynamics of women and purses, pocketbooks, wallets...  Who knew there was a science for each and every one of us.  Function?  Maybe that is important during the day, but give me a shimmery me happy purse for the evenings out.


To each their own, and I own plenty.

*
**
*

Monday, February 28, 2011

Photos of the Fur-Kids




This is my little man Woody.  Woody with the "old lady" Cuddles and then Woody being a camera hog as we try to get a photo of the cat Amanda (the child I never had! LOL).  Then there is Treeny, another story in itself!