A Bear for Courtney

What do you do when you have a 9-year old visiting for a few days and a tropical storm whirling outside your window?  Make a bear, of course.

I already made bears for both of her sisters and one for the smallest grandchild, Piper. I never made one for Riley, Courtney or Justin because I figured they were too cool for a homemade stuffed animal.  Courtney and Justin both already have quite the collection of “Build a Bears” which are much more sophisticated than my bears made out of scraps.  But Courtney has been bugging me to make her a bear for months so I finally gave in.  After going through my leftover fabric, she decided that she wanted to pick out her own material so off to Jo-Ann’s we went before the big storm hit.

Courtney wanted a monogram on one of the soles so no one else could claim her bear.(With the fun colors she picked out, I seriously doubt that would be an issue.)  I hadn’t used the monogram feature on the sewing machine before but after a little practice Courtney was pleased.

I used a Simplicity Pattern that I’ve had for years.

Courtney told me exactly what colors she wanted for each bear part.

Courtney was thrilled with her new bear and immediately got on the iPad to skype the rest of the family.  Now her little sisters want new bears, too. (not happening)

While the bears do make rides to the kids’ house, they live in Perfect.  (Except for Piper’s bear since she lives in North Dakota.)

So here are the sister bears.  They might be joined by a few brother bears the next time it rains for five or six days in a row.



T.S. Debby

It’s Thursday already.  Almost one solid week of Tropical Storm Debby.  But it’s over.  Yippee–we didn’t even lose power while she sat out in the Gulf causing mischief and mayhem.  Debby did eventually shut Old Homosassa down when both the Homosassa River and Mason Creek went over their banks and flooded streets and houses.

Most of the rain and wind came on Sunday. On Monday the tide started rising.  Tuesday morning we rode our bikes to check out Old Homosassa.

The street was closed to the county boat ramp and MacRae’s for obvious reasons.


This is “The Freezer”, one of our local bars.

We drove our truck into Homosassa Springs to get provisions (beer and wine).  While we were never told to evacuate, the county did close the streets that night.

“Downtown” Old Homosassa


I think this rooster came from Crystal River, it’s extreme size and color can be attributed to the Nuclear Power Plant.  And then it swam here with the high tide. Scary.  Almost as scary as zombies or a clown possee.


This is the intersection at Hancock Road and Mason Creek Rd.  With a canal from Mason Creek on one side of the intersection and the canal from the Homosassa River on the other, the water was a few feet deep.
Our neighborhood signs are swamped.


The boat was high and dry.
The garden shed barely escaped being flooded.
The view from the “sun” room.

A few of our neighbor’s were AWOL so we watched their houses while the tide crept up.  Couldn’t do anything about it–but we did watch.

Steve and Kathy’s backyard. Ray’s floating dock looks like it is sitting in the middle of a lake.
Paul and Sue’s place was surrounded by high water from the canal and all the rain.

We were still getting a little rain on Tuesday evening but it was pleasant enough to sit in our screened room.  We have an eastern view so have lovely sunrises.  But some evenings we get a reflection of the sunset–it only lasts a few moments.  We call it “The Glowing”.  This evening it was particularly beautiful due to the gray skies and high water.

Wednesday morning we had a little more rain and then lots of sun for the rest of the day.  Terry, Maggie and I rode our bikes down to MacRae’s to check things out.  A reporter from Bay News 9 was doing his report in the middle of the flooded parking lot.  Weather guys need to stand in water.  Glad it wasn’t Jim Cantore!

The Shed may not be open for a few days.
Motel looks empty, too.


The boat ramp.
The other side of the river.

It’s over.  We did see the American Red Cross Disaster Relief truck, a few electric and cable trucks, and a “restoration” expert so some were not as fortunate as us.  We still need to clean up the flood and wind debris from the yard and do some pressure washing, but we know that it could have been so much worse.

Adventures in the Kitchen with Michelle

Michelle has a quick yummy snack for you!

It’s hot…real hot. I’m done with yard work and want to put my feet up, but need a little something. I get tired of fro-yo and fruit smoothies. There’s no chocolate in those!! I stumbled on a cheap diet friendly snack. Take a box of Chocolate Graham Crackers, and a tub of Cool Whip Lite (not that fat-free stuff, yuck) Thaw the whip in the fridge and break the crackers into squares. Spread on some topping and make a sandwich! Freeze on cookie sheets and then stack in a zip-top bag stashed in the freezer. Cheap and easy. Perfect lo-cal snackin’s when the Chocolate Monster in your head just won’t shut up! Go make some. Then grab your favorite book, and put those feet up.