Thursday, December 22, 2011

Of Clocks, Cookies, Cats and Cardamom

Baby, it's cold outside!  I returned a short while ago from my exercise walk, and now the fog is rolling back in and the temp is at freezing.  Brrr.  It must be winter.

We've been busy here, as usual, at the Reeder homestead.  For example, Tom has been building a clock.
 My mother had a tall case clock that we didn't move to her assisted living apartment.  It wasn't running at the time, and no one else wanted it, so we brought it home.  Tom loves old clocks.  We had a clock maker look at it and he determined that the works would have to be replaced and the total cost of new parts and labor would be $950.  We knew we would like to get it fixed some day, but put it off for now, what with other expenses taking priority.

But in the last two weeks checks have started arriving from Mom's estate.  Tom had checked into ordering the parts himself and saving the labor costs, so I told him to go ahead.  It would be my Christmas present.

The parts arrived early this week.
 Tom carefully read all of the instructions, and followed them step by step.
 He has it put together and running, and now is in the process of regulating it.  It has a lovely soft chime and looks great in it's new home in the living room.
 Meanwhile Corey is here from Colorado for Christmas and more job interviews and he requested we do our traditional cookie baking.      Yesterday afternoon the crew arrived to cut out and decorate ginger bread and sugar cookies.  Jill brought along a crock pot full of beef stew for our dinner.
Everyone gets into the act.

The cookies are well decorated. :-)

Our newly adopted cat Jozy has been keeping life interesting too.  While she comes and goes outside through her cat door, she is mostly an indoor cat at this time, still getting used to her new home. But she is being taunted by the neighbor.
The yowling and spitting and tail thumping on either side of the glass create quite a racket.  Here at the window, and at the patio door too, they go at each other, whacking the glass with claws bared.  

Today I decided to interfere with a pitcher of cold water.  The intruder got a bit wet on the first hit, and now at least runs away when it sees me coming.  Actual conflict may be inevitable, but for now I don't want either cat ripped up in what might be quite a fight. Of course Jozy can go outside and have it out is she wants, but so far she's just acting tough behind protective glass.

Christmas isn't far away now, and preparations are moving right along.  Tom and I got all of the gift wrapping done early in the week, and now the wrapping station is ready for the kids to use.  Jill spent several hours this morning behind closed doors.  Corey wrapped last night. Jake will be last minute Christmas Eve.

Today I baked cardamom bread.
The Swedish cardamom wreath will be frosted and decorated for Christmas morning breakfast.  The rolls will go into the freezer to await another occasion.  The house smells wonderful!


  1. Your Christmas happenings sound like Christmas out of a story book.

    We should have known Tom had talents we hadn't discovered, clockmaking. It is indeed a beautiful clock.

  2. Those cookies look good. Wish I could get the energy to bake cookies. We bought the butter and vanilla extract, but can't seem to get out of our slump. Christmas blues...

  3. that's my kitty! When she lived with me there were two cats she was particularly bellicose towards: "Boo" was a bushy black cat sho used to live next door and like to hang out on my porch before Jozy moved in, Boo moved 2 doors down but still like my -- I should say Jozy's porch. In the north half of the duplex lived another tuxedo cat, and the door he would come in and out of was actually near my bedroom window, and Jozy would peer out behind the vertical blinds to make sure he wasn't lurking out there.

    The first few months were pretty stressful, I'd had her all of a month before she got a nasty wound on her hip that required some attention, a couple months later she got a wound to the base of her ear that wasn't that bad and didn't require a vet visit. After those first few months disagreements were usually handled with actual physical sparring, but there was often plenty of posturing and "rapid cat door ingress and egress operations"

  4. What a beautiful clock. I think it's beautiful and a wonderful thing to do. And those cookies and the bread look fantastic... I can't actually smell them but I think I can. :-)

  5. Looks as though you and your family have been very busy!! Bravo for fixing the clock. I enjoyed your pictures of decorating cookies. I had the pleeasure while visiting some friends with lots of kids, and we had a blast. Hope you have a very joyous holiday! ~karen

  6. What a wonderful project! It is a beautiful clock and how nice that Tom could fix it himself...a labor of love indeed. The cookies look sooo yummy as well as the rolls..I am looking forward to Mark's family's Christmas morning as there are always big, yummy cinnamon rolls...have a Merry Christmas!

  7. I love how serious the grandkids looks as they decorate
    no wonder it all comes out so beautifully

    I love the windows in your living room!!
    they're a beautiful size and shape
    the clock is wonderful

    Merry Christmas to you and all your family

  8. That is an amazing looking clock! We have a school house clock that hasn't worked in 30 years. However, it's on the wall as a decoration. It used to be owned by Art's dad. I could have used Tom as a neighbor to help us.


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