Monday, October 30, 2017

Mosaic Monday

Doesn't it  make your knees hurt to see her sit like that??

After I had almost recovered from our England trip, I spent a week with our daughter's family. It was so fun to be with them. My daughter had a room all ready for me - closet space, a drawer in the bathroom all to myself, and nice touches like plenty of Dove chocolates on hand. Who can resist that?

On the left side of the photo above, you can see our three year old granddaughter who will totally ace the pre-kindergarden screening when that time rolls around. She's still at the 'deftly cutting paper into tiny pieces' stage. We're hoping she eventually moves into the 'picking up after myself' stage. We're not holding out a lot of hope for that to happen any time soon.

On the right is her older brother who was teaching me a 'new' way to play Quick Cups. My job was to snap the ones in front of me, like you do with caroms, in order to knock down the ones on his side. When I reminded him that that wasn't exactly how the game is played, he reminded me ever so patiently that, 'This is a tutorial, Grandma.' :-)

It was a complete delight to spend time with them, and I read through all the Disney princess books multiple times, along with Jack and the Beanstalk and even William Steig's 'Solomon The Rusty Nail.' I was thrilled that Lucy loved that story, contrary to some of the reviewers who wrote that it would terrify little children. Really? Does anyone remember Grimm's Fairy Tales that I grew up with??  Solomon is NOT scary, and it's a really clever and fun story (like most of the William Steig books.) 

Well, well, well. I just looked up Solomon the Rusty Nail on Amazon and you can only get it on Kindle these days, unless you want to spend $50 to get a paperback copy! Good grief! His stories are so worth reading, especially the following:

Solomon The Rusty Nail
Doctor DeSoto
Brave Irene
Tifky Doofky
Farmer Palmer's Wagon Ride
Sylvester and the Magic Pebble

The collage above is of scenes around our home this past week or two. I wish you could zoom in on the photo on the lower left. Tommy is totally chilling on that comfy chair!  And in the lower right, the two kitties, Tommy & Smokey (of Instagram #tommyandsmokey fame) were watching the snow (yes, SNOW!) last Friday. They were mesmerized. I was depressed. But at least it didn't stick around long.

However, on Saturday, we went to Rochester to visit a friend in the hospital there and the Rochester area still had a thick dusting of snow. Ack! Winter is coming way too early.

Blockley in the Cotswolds

More Blockley in future posts



Check out my natural, handcrafted vegan soap!

Buy any 5 or more, Get 1 FREE 

'Christmas Morning'
Natural Vegan Soap
No harsh chemicals
No animal products
Only natural colorants
Kind to even sensitive skin
Luxurious lather
Gorgeous fragrance 

Each soap bar is appx. 4.5-5 oz.
Labeled with ingredient list
Enclosed in a clear cello bag with gold seal

...and LOTS more! Check out all my handcrafted soaps at

and at

Our ETSY Shop

Linked to Mosaic Monday

Join me on Instagram: @cranberrymorning


Sunday, October 29, 2017

Sing to the LORD

'Sing to the LORD a new song,
his praise from the end of the earth!

Let the sea roar and all that fills it,
the coastlands and their inhabitants.
Let the desert and its towns lift up their voice,
the villages that Kedar inhabits;
let the inhabitants of Sela sing for joy,
let them shout from the tops of the mountains.'
Isaiah 42:10-11 

Definitions for Kedar and Sela can be found at's topical Bible. 

Have a blessed Lord's Day! 


Comments are closed today.
Photo from Quire, Christ Church Cathedral, Oxford, UK - October 2017

Friday, October 27, 2017

Little Venice - Anglophile Friday

A month ago today we left for 12 days in England. My brother and his wife, from Denver, met us in Iceland (flight layover) and we flew together from there to Heathrow. You'll be hearing probably more than you want to know about this trip, but I have to do something with the 1500 photos I took, so be forewarned.

On Saturday, September 30, we took the Tube to Warwick Avenue and walked a couple blocks past very expensive housing, across a little bridge to the Grand Union Canal. I've always dreamed of a vacation on a narrowboat, but seeing that area full of those charming, colorful boats was the next best thing. And walking along the canal was a delight.

Actors Timothy West and his wife Prunella Scales have spent vacations on the canals for years, beginning when their sons were young. Prunella Scales, I think, is best known for Upstairs Downstairs, I stand corrected. As Mike and Sal both commented (below), Prunella Scales 'achieved her greatest success on TV as the nosy, shrewish wife "Sybil Fawlty" on the classic John Cleese comedy Fawlty Towers,' (IMDB) and Timothy West is in a different role every time I turn around, it seems. One of my favorites was an Inspector Campion mystery, 'Police at the Funeral.' After the next series of photos, there's a clip of their 'Great Canal Journeys' from YouTube. They made an entire series, one of those things worth watching.

I wonder if there are any homeschoolers among the boaters.
Wouldn't that be fun!

There's that little bridge I mentioned.

It could be a regular traffic jam at times, couldn't it!

And yes, there are an estimated 15,000 people who LIVE on their narrowboats year 'round.
For some interesting information on narrowboat life, here's a fun website:

I think that gorgeous shrub is 'hardy fuchsia'
Definitely not hardy to the NW Wisconsin climate.

I have no idea what this variegated shrub is. The leaves are leathery like holly, but not pointy, and the berries are so pretty.

And I just remembered a book that I put on my Wish List probably six months ago, 'Maidens' Trip: A Wartime Adventure on the Grand Union Canal. (And I (I mean 'we') just happen to have an Amazon credit. Yea!!)

From Amazon:

"In 1943 Emma Smith joined the Grand Union Canal Carrying Company under their wartime scheme of employing women to replace the boaters. She set out with two friends on a big adventure: three eighteen-year-olds, freed from a middle-class background, precipitated into the boating fraternity. They learn how to handle a pair of seventy-two foot-long canal boats, how to carry a cargo of steel north from London to Birmingham and coal from Coventry; how to splice ropes, bail out bilge water, keep the engine ticking over and steer through tunnels. They live off kedgeree and fried bread and jam, adopt a kitten, lose their bicycles, laugh and quarrel and get progressively dirtier and tougher as the weeks go by. Maidens' Trip is a classic memoir of the growth to maturity of three young women in the exceptional circumstances of Britain at war."

Let me know when you've moored your narrowboat on the Grand Union Canal and I'll come visit. :-)


Check out my natural, handcrafted vegan soap!
Buy any 5 or more, Get 1 FREE

Christmas Forest
Balsam & Siberian Fir
Natural, Handcrafted Vegan Soap

...and more! Check out all my handcrafted soaps at

and at

Our ETSY Shop

Join me on Instagram: @cranberrymorning


Friday, October 13, 2017

Anglophile Friday - Fascinating London Walks

London is a great place for walking. I don't know how many miles we put on, but we walked a lot, and I even burned off a piece of cheesecake from Borough Market.

On Sunday afternoon, while my brother and his wife went to the British Museum, Mr. C. and I wandered the streets SSW of St. Paul's Cathedral. What interesting places we found!

Coincidentally, some of the same places were on our ghost walk the following Saturday night.

I love all the wonderful architectural detail!

St. Andrews isn't new, the King's Wardrobe isn't new, Communion isn't new, so it must be that communion at 12:30 on Thursdays is new.


"King’s wardrobe established by medieval king Edward III – kept ceremonial robes of state, on view just as crown jewels are today.

"The Wardrobe, originally housed within the Tower of London was where (as the name might suggest) King's (sic) kept their clothes, and also armour and treasure. It was moved in 1311 by Edward II to Lombard Street, then later to the site where the group are standing, by Edward III. It's currently a quiet little space populated by a few trees, offices, a hotel and enclosed largely by 18th century houses. 

"In 1604 Shakespeare received 4 ½ yards of scarlet cloth from the Wardrobe enabling him to attend state entry into London of James I. 

"If you have ever read any of Samuel Pepys' diary, the name might sound familiar, as 'The Wardrobe' was the generic name given to the surrounding area and one he mentioned quite frequently. Pepys was a visitor to the Wardrobe on several occasions as he was required to dress the part for attending Court. He must have been one of the last people to visit before the Wardrobe was destroyed by the Great Fire.
"Christopher Wren did have grand plans for the rebuilding of London, much like what had happened in Paris, but his plans were ignored. Much of then known London was rebuilt without any alteration to the original street plan. Houses, this time, were made of brick rather than timber.

"The wardrobe, however, was not rebuilt. In 1709 the office of the Wardrobe was abolished and the garden of the great house was converted into this courtyard.

The Shard, defiantly piercing through the ancient and beautiful. 
Don't ask me why.

The walk was much longer than the portion I'm showing you now, so I guess this is to be continued...

And eventually, I'll get around to starting at the beginning!


Check out my natural, handcrafted vegan soap!

As Always, Buy any 5 or more, Get 1 FREE

Cranberry Tea
Natural Vegan Soap

...and more! Check out all my handcrafted soaps at

and at

Our ETSY Shop

Join me on Instagram: @cranberrymorning


Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Hodgepodging Up North and in Canterbury

Canterbury Cathedral

Join Joyce and the Gang

  She writes the questions;
we write the answers.
Plug them into your own blog post
and join in!

1. On a scale of 1-10 how would you rate your sense of direction? 1=can't find my way out of a paper bag and 10=if I've been somewhere once I can find it blindfolded ten years later.

I'd say it's a 10 or close to it. I have a pretty good sense of direction, although I can't promise about the blindfold. :-)  The last time I used a map that I can hold in my hand was today. And yesterday. And the day before that. Not only were we traveling and needed to look at the map, but I tend to look at maps a lot anyway. I need to know where I am and where I'm going - on a daily basis. And even when I don't need to know, I'm curious to know where things are in relation to other things.

When was the last time you looked at/used a map you could hold in your hand? (phones don't count!) 
back east, down south, out west, up north

Choose one of these directional expressions and tell us why you chose it.

Back east. I chose it because here in Wisconsin, we don't call it 'back east,' but 'out east.'  Maybe if I were from the East, I'd call it 'back east.' But I've lived 'up north' almost all of my life.

 Canterbury Cathedral

2. Did you do more talking or listening yesterday? Is that typical? Describe your yesterday in one word.

Sometimes I do neither. It's pretty quiet here. My day yesterday in a word: JETLAG.

3. Time, money, water-power-resources, opportunity...which one on the list are you most guilty of wasting? What might you do to change that?

Maybe I'm most guilty of wasting time. I'll try to keep this answer short.

 Canterbury West Gate

4. Did  your family take regular vacations when you were a kid? Tell us something you remember about a family roadtrip from your own childhood.

We didn't take regular vacations. We were farmers. Dairy farmers risk a lot by going on vacation. They don't know if anyone can actually be trusted to care for the cows properly so they don't come back from vacation to a sick herd. But I do remember a road trip with  my grandparents and parents - to Florida. I've told of this before. I must have been about 10 years old and it was when I learned what 'obnoxious' meant. My grandma used it a lot to describe me and my newly acquired skill of chewing/snapping my bubble gum.

Canterbury Cathedral gate

5. If you could grow anything you wanted, what would you grow? Why?

I would grow patience, kindness, and compassion. They don't come naturally to me. I could use them. The world could use them. And I pray about it every. single. day.

 Private prayer alcoves, Canterbury Cathedral 

6. Insert your own random thought here.

I foolishly thought I could beat jetlag by staying awake 23 hours from the time we left London until we were home again in Wisconsin. And by going to bed at 9:30 PM Monday instead of when I felt desperately tired at 6 PM. I kept busy washing/drying/folding clothes, cleaning the kitchen, taking care of the cats, etc. and finally went to bed at 9:30, but awakened with a fierce caffeine deprivation headache at 2 AM. I was an hour late in getting my morning coffee - on London time.

 Henry IV and his wife Joan of Navarre
The only king buried in Canterbury Cathedral (d.1413)
(played by Jeremy Irons in 'The Hollow Crown')



At my Etsy Shop, use Code: OCTOBER2017
to get 20% off your purchase of $35 or more.

Christmas Soaps Are Ready

Check out my natural, handcrafted vegan soap!
Buy any 5 or more, Get 1 FREE

Woodland Flowers
Natural Vegan Soap

...and more! Check out all my handcrafted soaps at

and at

Our ETSY Shop

Join me on Instagram: @cranberrymorning


The first photo of Canterbury Cathedral in this post is from 2015, because this is what the main entrance of the cathedral looks like right now:

Canterbury Cathedral 
an ongoing restoration project

 It is so good to be home with the sweet kitties again.
It looks like they might have decided that the box just isn't big enough for the two of them. I have a soft blanket on the floor next to the box. They take turns lying in the box.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Dover Castle and Homemade SoapnSuch SALE

Hello, everyone! I'm finally back in blogland, albeit with a bit of jetlag. We had a wonderful 12 days in England, and for those of you who follow @cranberrymorning on Instagram, you're probably sick of photos, so I'll just post a few now and then. As much as I love England, it's always nice to come home to wide, straight roads, sunshine - along with cold temps and wind :-(  and to be awakened by the kittens fighting over my feet. 

The photos in this post are of Dover Castle and harbor, on the southeast coast of England. I've always wanted to see it, and I was not disappointed. I thought it was even more interesting and impressive than the Tower of London. In the photo below you can actually see the coast of France as you look across the breakwaters and the harbor. 

It was a beautiful, sunny day, and although there were the inevitable showers on our vacation, there were also large patches of sunshine. One just has to be prepared for every eventuality. A packable down jacket under a raincoat served me well. As soon as it got too warm, I could stuff the lightweight packable down into my day bag.

Dover Castle Keep

These last two photos are of earthworks around the castle, and on one side are very steep. I was surprised and delighted to see sheep zigzagging their way up the chalky embankment. It's a clever way to keep the grass trimmed.

I think these are Herdwick. Beatrix Potter bred Herdwick sheep
on her farm in the Lake District.


20% off your purchase of $35 or more


at my Etsy shop
Must Use Coupon Code 'OCTOBER2017'

or at my website, 
(I will refund via PayPal)
No Coupon Code Necessary at my website

And as always, Buy 5 or More, Get Another Free

All Christmas Soaps are now in my shops.

Due to family business, my shops will be closed from 
October 17-October 29
and reopened on October 30.

Peppermint Tea
All Natural Vegan Soap
With Peppermint From My Garden

...and more! Check out all my handcrafted soaps at
and at
Our ETSY Shop

Join me on Instagram @cranberrymorning



Related Posts with Thumbnails