Penny the Traveling Clothespin Doll shares her adventures at home and abroad.
Oregon pinetree farm
Getting ready for a new travels
Learning to make India chapata
 
 

Penny has a cousin that has been living in Mongolia. She wanted to send her own Merry Christmas to you readers. Here she poses with a hand-carved Mongolian nativity scene. She is making friends with the camels.

Camels are native here in Mongolia; they are used for transportation and for milking. In this land the animals have owners but are allowed to run loose and feed themselves in the wild.

The herdsman live in little round houses called “gers”. The fences are used to keep animals away from the houses.

Mongolia is a land between Russia and China. Far in the north, the summers are short and snow can often be seen out on the mountains.

Come visit and take a turn at riding a camel for yourself!

Christmas is not celebrated here as in Christian countries.

Maybe you’d like to see a close up of that nativity scene at my friend’s house. It is beautifully made.

Mary and Joseph in the background and the baby Jesus in the manger.

We three Mongolian kings…bearing gifts.

I see a restless camel itching to go out exploring!

Our little gal also enjoyed checking out the gingerbread house competition for Christmas. Here is a scene with gers and animals and the mountains in the background. So detailed and clever!

Next, a tall skinny house dusted with snow.

And last of all, a little log cabin, complete with interior furnishings.

Before we say goodbye, you are welcome to sample some “aaruul” or dried yogurt that they make here in Mongolia.

Thanks for visiting!! Merry Christmas!!

Happy New Year!! from Mongolia.

“шинэ жилийн баярын мэнд хүргы”

Merry Christmas from Penny and Friends!!

Penny recently went to visit her friend Cathy, and had such a lovely time making new friends and enjoying an old fashioned Christmas home. Come along and share the fun!

Ho, Ho, Ho!! Come on in, many joyful surprises await you here!

Penny is sitting above the door to invite you in. What a cute homemade garland this is with red beads and green fabric ties.

First, come to the stable, where the shepherds and wise men have traveled to see that the wonderful news is true, a Savior is born!!

“God must have said, ‘I know what I’ll do, I’ll send my love right down there where they are. And I’ll send it as a tiny baby so they’ll have to touch it and they’ll have to hold it close.’ “

– Gloria Gaither

Jesus, You are the reason for this season of festive joy.

We come to celebrate your birthday!

On the mantel, Penny wanders among the lights, pine cones and greenery exploring on the back of a friendly stuffed reindeer steed.

The Christmas tree is a splendid display of beauty!

This is Felicity, the darling folk art angel holding the star at the top of the tree. How do you do, dear? What a lovely view!

Nestled among the other ornaments Penny feels right at home. Here she meets jolly little snowmen and a Christmas cat! Why, that must be Stitch’s favorite ornament! Let’s go meet Stitch, the kitty…

Here, kitty, kitty!

Hello Stitch, what a warm and cozy pal you make, with your little “stitched” half mustache, and your long soft fur.

How about a frosty sleigh ride together with you, Mr. Snowman? Wheee!

Now we’ll rest a bit on this old fashioned trunk and decide where to go visit next. Do I see someone cat napping on the couch back there?

I love the old Santas and lots of little Christmas trees.

Red berries and mittens are joyful additions,

And a sparkly lamp shines with cheer!

Another pretty old lantern sits in this corner on a square basket box where hangs a single white snowflake.

Penny found another little Christmas tree, perfect for sitting under as she chats with a few more snowmen buddies. I like this one beside her with the sleepy eyes.

She can’t resist the invitation to come sit by these two snowmen’s campfire while they entertain her with jolly tales.

Come to the kitchen now, Penny! There are lots of special things in here!

These rows and rows of cookies smell, oh, so delicious!

See the shadow of the window snowflake on the cupboard’s side? So pretty.

More Christmas friends spread cheer in their bright corner over here.

Even the shaggy dark fellow under the hat can’t resist all those snowman smiles that surround him.

Penny oversees the operation of more cookies underway.

I’ll volunteer to be a taste tester!!

Yes, you may, as long as you come join the sink crew and take a turn washing some dishes!!

Its evening now, and the Santa moon is out.

Penny is resting and gazing at all the labors below she was happy to be a part of.

What’s that old English Carol? “On a cold winter’s night that was so deep..”

The First Noel, the Angels did say,
Was to certain poor shepherds in fields as they lay,
In fields where they lay keeping their sheep,
On a cold winter’s night that was so deep.
Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel,
Born is the King of Israel!

They looked up and saw a star,
Shining in the East beyond them far,
And to the earth it gave great light,
And so it continued both day and night.

And by the light of that same star 
Three Wise Men came from country far; 
To seek for a king was their intent, 
And to follow the star wherever it went.

This star drew nigh to the northwest, 
O’er Bethlehem it took its rest; 
And there it did both stop and stay, 
Right over the place where Jesus lay.

Then entered in those Wise Men three, 
Full reverently upon the knee, 
And offered there, in his presence, 
Their gold and myrrh and frankincense.

Then let us all with one accord,
Sing praises to our heavenly Lord,
That hath made heaven and earth of naught,
And with His blood mankind hath bought.

Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel,
Born is the King of Israel!

1833 Old English Christmas Carol – Author Unknown

Merry Christmas, friends, near and far, thank you for coming along. May God bless your home with His grace and peace this Christmas.

*******

Hello Friends,

I’ve been missing here for a bit, but we are back! It is the beautiful autumn season here in Western New York, and I have some pictures to share.

Last week my parents made a visit to the splendor of Letchworth State Park and captured some glimpses of its colorful display.

Won’t you come along and see the falls with us?

We will head down this road to see what awaits….

These historic stone walls add such a loveliness to the view. Here is a grand old oak tree that has lived here for ages, overlooking these hillsides blanketed with color. I wonder what stories he could tell? Long ago this area belonged to the Seneca Indians. This park has a fascinating tribute to Mary Jemison who was captured by the Senecas when she was 12, and she chose to stay and adopt the Indian way of life, marry an Indian husband and raise her children here. This was her view back then.

This is often referred to as the “Grand Canyon of the East” with the Genesee River flowing down the 17 miles of its length.

Come this way and we will see the Middle Falls, one of three major waterfalls nearby.

Here at the Middle Falls is a lovely picnic spot and close to the edge is where the water flows over. See below, there on your left is the cliff drop.

The water drops over 100 feet from here into the gorge below.

This Middle Falls is the widest of the falls, at nearly 300 feet wide.

This shot gives you a view of the picnic area we were just looking at. Zoom in on this next picture and you will see my dad still sitting there on his bench. 🙂

Notice the misty air that keeps these stones damp by the falls.

After soaking in the beauty here, let us hike up and see the Upper Falls.

Spanning the Upper Falls is a newly built arched trestle bridge. It replaces the previous bridges for the trains to cross over. This bridge is a total length of 963 feet across, and rests 235 feet above the River.

Let’s take a closer look.

These Upper Falls are so beautiful, its hard to guess that the drop here is only 70 feet.

These stone steps lead higher to the top of the Falls.

And here is where the water goes over. This Falls has such an interesting “S” shape, where you can see the top and the front of the falling water all at the same time.

And now for a close up view of the Trestle Bridge itself. And lest you think that is not very big, look close to see the “tiny” rail along the top.

As a farewell to the Letchworth Falls, here is one of the lovely little side falls, one among many that line this huge gorge.

“Someday when I grow up, I want to be a mighty waterfall too!!” says he.

Maybe this one is Penny’s favorite.

Here at home, Penny has a few autumn pictures of her own to share with you. The yellow leaves of our locust tree add a bit of bright beauty to this pile of dried leaves in our yard.

We have been busy with harvesting grapes and apples, raspberries and potatoes here on our farm.

Below she is riding the breezes in the branches of the tulip poplar tree, clinging to the seed pods left by the summer “tulip” blossoms. It was a windy day, I’m gad this shot is in clear focus. The cold winds are coming! Farewell to the glorious sunny autumn days, we have enjoyed you immensely!

On a rainy day, the dogs enjoyed a hike to the back fields. Just look at those happy smiles.

Ooo, running water to splash in! We love mud!!

Back indoors, we welcome this damp, chilly season with a steaming cup of hot tea. Here Penny is stirring sweet and creamy chocolate peppermint tea, yum, yum! Always surrounded by apples in this season. I love it!

Autumn days are celebrated with this autumn rag quilt I made years ago, so soft and warm, and my brand new pumpkin socks.

The cover photo of this post is of Penny on a big white pumpkin that I grew in our vegetable garden. Isn’t it beautiful?

Autumn is a season of abundance and gratitude. As Thanksgiving is just around the corner, lets get our “thanks – givers” warmed up. This is a great time to start a gratitude list, and keep adding snippets of things in your life that make it beautiful, and speak of God’s love to you in a thousand little ways.

Happy Easter, friends! Penny and I have been enjoying the New York spring coming on and doing a little happy crafting by making some quick newspaper daffodils for decorating with this Easter.

I found this video on YouTube, Easy Newspaper Flowers DIY .
We decided to try it out by making some bright yellow newspaper daffodils. Time to get out the paints and brushes, Penny!

We painted several yellow three petaled flower sets in various shades of yellow and orange. I cut them out, then layered four of these papers with a small circle in front for the center trumpet. A button in the center is held with a small wire folded back to poke through the layers holding them all together. The instructor said to crumple the paper roughly in your fist, then spread them out, and fluff out the layers. Hey, that doesn’t look too bad! What a fun project.

I recently colored this page with colored pencils to celebrate an Easter style bouquet. This is from one of my favorite adult coloring books , Its Simply Tuesday, by Emily P. Freeman. Several friends and I color a page weekly then send each other photos of our work. It has been a fun way to share some coloring time together, even from a distance.

The facing page has a quote from Scripture.

Thinking of the wonder of Easter, and how God so loved the world that He sent His Son – John 1:14 fits so well: “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.”

Then I added Psalm 8:4 “What is man that You are mindful of him, and the son of man that You visited him?” What a wonder. He came among us. His death, and the glory of His resurrection. Death could not hold Him down. And that same resurrection power is available for all who love and trust Him. Romans 8:11. Who can fathom it?

This week, I decided to experiment and make the traditional Easter Hot Cross Buns for my first time. These soft rolls have dried fruit and spices inside, with a frosting cross on top. These were a fun treat for our family. Its a keeper! I’ll be making them again in the future.

I’ll leave you with a little sunshine, some forsythia blossoms from out by the barn that I cut early and brought inside to brighten our table.

May you have the joy inside you of new life.

A gift from the Giver of Life this spring.

Scandanavian Tour
V
iolet visits Holland

You are invited to come along as we explore the beautiful, historic land of canals, wooden shoes, and windmills with Violet as our tour guide. Here she is, smiling in anticipation of visiting what she calls storybook land. Ready to go?

This past summer, Violet had the grand opportunity to travel through the Scandanavian countries and see fascinating historic places in this picturesque storybook land, hosted by her friend, Sue. She toured through five countries and saw a wide variety of sights. In this post, I’ll focus on Holland, and share the others with you soon.

Here she is reading up ahead of time on all that she will see and do. Hello Amsterdam!

Amsterdam is the capital city of Holland. It is a marshy, low land, below sea level and full of canals. Many buildings are built on stilts to hold them high and dry. So don’t be surprised when you see the buildings leaning a bit. Here is a pretty little sidewalk shop.

I found this map of Amsterdam showing how it is made up of many canals. I read that it has 165 canals that cover 60 miles of waterways! I wonder, are the canals named, liked streets?

Violet visited a park that was pretty and green. In one area a road goes over the park on a bridge, and Penny met this fun lad underneath, helping to hold up the road. Now she’s helping too.

Hey, come along and hop in, we are going to cruise on a canal!

Oh, the beauty of the water, the trees, and the historic buildings. How lovely!

Bicycles are a popular way of transportation here. They are found everywhere, even at the bottom of the canals. Whoops!

Sunshine and pretty boats and bridges.

In the picture above, I enjoy seeing all the colors and artistic shapes of the tall buildings. Also, I think that the red houseboat on the right looks really homey with its awning shade and pink flower pots. I found a video online that invites you to tour a houseboat on display, and thought I would share it here. How fascinating to see the possiblities of a floating house.

Holland is also famous for its traditional wooden shoes, or klompen.
“Wooden shoe wearers claim the shoes are warm in winter, cool in summer and provide support for good posture. The wood also absorbs perspiration so that the foot can breathe.” Here is an interesting page I found on Why walk on wooden shoes?

This clogs and cheese shop has a man making wooden shoes right here. How fascinating to watch! What an art!

The Zaanse Schans is a historic windmill park with many great old wooden windmils that were collected and brought here to preserve them. Several are still operating to grind spices, press oil, and saw wood.

These are the end of Violet’s pictures, but I’d like to add a little extra here.

When I think of Holland, I think of Corrie ten Boom. I have often read her book, The Hiding Place, that tells of her family’s watch shop in Haarlam and the work they did to protect and hide Jews during World War II. The price they paid was high, they endured arrest and cruel prison camps; but Corrie lived on to witness to the fact that God’s love is deeper than the world’s deepest darkness.

Below is the ten Boom house in Haarlam, just west of Amsterdam. They affectionately called it the Beje. A nickname short of the road’s real name, Barteljorisstraat.

The Beje

Barteljorisstraat 19
2011 RA Haarlem, Holland

When looking online for information about the ten Booms, I found this interesting blog post that tells an overview of their story and gives a tour of their home. The Corrie ten Boom house by Kevin & Amanda.

I was fascinated to find that their home itself has been preserved as a museum in tribute to the ten Boom family and at this site you can get lots more detail and even take a virtual tour.

One more quote from this humble, playful and loving woman.