Wednesday, August 24, 2016

He's here!!

We welcomed our newest grandbaby, and our first grand-SON!  The heir to the Harasick throne is here!

Duke Andrew Harasick was born on August 5th (his momma's birthday!) He weighed in at a hefty 8 pounds 2 oz and was 21 inches long.  We are praising the Lord for a sweet, healthy baby boy and healthy mama, too.  Have to say... he looks a LOT like his dada!

We got the alert early that morning that Stephanie's labor had started, and together with our dear friends, the Tubbs family, we kept vigil at the hospital until our newest little family member was born around 6:00 pm at night.   We got to go in and see him around 8:00 pm! 


The waiting room cheering team selfie!


The happy family!


Holding him for the first time!
 (yes...Rich felt it necessary to get a DUKE shirt)


Such a dream that we get to share this grandson with our dear friends Robert and Luci!


Nothing quite like a just born baby face!


The cutest and plumpest little boy!


The three Harasick men


Darsy meets baby Duke!


My kids holding each other's kids!  My heart!
(and don't forget, Emma's having grandbaby #3, a girl,  in December!)


Darsy is SO excited about her new cousin! Yay for Duke!

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Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Just beachy

Well, summer is in full swing here in southern California!
Darsy is so happy to get her fat little toesies in the sand!

Summer for us usually includes:

beach & pool days...and maybe a little tan
lots of summer fruit... can't get enough peaches & nectarines!
picking tomatoes in the garden, making salsa & caprese
having the top off the Jeep and scenic drives
reading books just for fun
eating dinner outside (lots of salads & bbq-ing)

And this summer is SUPER special because we are waiting for someone little to arrive! Hurry, baby boy! (a little more than 3 weeks till the due date!)

And yes, I know Stephanie is possibly the cutest pregnant mama 
like, EVER.
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Monday, June 27, 2016

Grandbaby #3 gender!

I'm going to let my granddaughter Darsy announce the gender of her sibling-to-be coming in December!  Can you guess by all the PINK what it is???


Yep, another sweet girl!!  Hooray!!

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Thursday, May 26, 2016

A Tale of Three Chinas

Almost 20 years ago when my grandmother passed away, I inherited what remained of her china.  It was from the 1940's and mainly included just a few serving pieces.   I was glad to have it not just because it was something I had long admired, but because I really wanted something sentimental to remember grandma by.  I once heard a story that my mom, while pregnant with me, dropped a stack of fine china dishes that she was carrying to the kitchen for my grandma.  So that may explain why only some serving pieces survived!

Since eBay had just become a thing, I searched for more of the china, which I learned from the backside was called Noritake Nanarosa.  I was able to secure a beautiful tea pot and some plates, teacups, and saucers on auction.

Fast forward to just a few years ago when my brother in law, Dave Mickelson, was helping a buddy clear out his mother's garage.  He happened on a box of china, and when he opened it, he immediately thought it was my pattern.  He brought it to me, and while it was made by Noritake, it was not exactly my pattern.  However, it went well enough with my grandma's dishes, so I gratefully added it to my little collection.

Recently, my sister in law Kristen (Dave's wife and Rich's sister) received a box of china as a donation to the company she works with.  Lo and behold -   it looked like my china!  She sent me a photo to ask.  Again, it was not exact, but close.  Since the company had no use for it, she asked if I wanted it.  Um....YES PLEASE!

I was so thrilled to unpack PRISTINE plates of all sizes, two kinds of bowls (including soup bowls I have never owned), a beautiful divided vegetable bowl, tea cups, and saucers.  It made me wonder the story of how this china from so long ago could have been so safely protected all these years.  Regardless of where it's been since the 1940's, I'm happy it's found its "forever home" with some of its sisters :-)

Here are some photos of my updated collection.  
I'm not a keeper or a collector of much, but I truly cherish these dishes!

 A sample tea saucer of all three patterns from Noritake - so close!
Top: newest addition --"Mimi"
Middle: former addition (name unknown)
Bottom: Grandma's china, "Nanarosa"


The new collection:  oval serving platter, gravy boat, incredible divided bowl, dinner plates, soup bowls, sherbet bowls, teacups & saucers, a creamer and a lone sugar lid.


I'm so in love with this divided vegetable bowl!  
Look at that amazing condition - shiny and not a scratch!


The newly arranged collection on one side of my china cabinet.
Though I don't possess complete settings, I now have 30 dinner plates -- let's party!


I had to be strategic about the arrangement so that everything fit.  Sadly, the teacups had to be separated and join the crystal on the other side of the cabinet.
I also have a small collection of Fostoria Chintz (elegant depression glass) from my grandma.

The china on the middle shelf is my wedding china, which we never got any of at the time of our wedding, but that was a surprise 25th anniversary gift from Rich - see this post for the story).

Do you own any heirloom china? 
I hope to not just display this, but use it often.


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Monday, May 23, 2016

Hooray! (warning: grandbaby news/photo overload)

LORD willing, I'll have THREE grandbabies by Christmas!

My daughter Emma just announced that she is expecting grandbaby #3 in mid December (her 2nd)!

And I am also anxiously awaiting the birth of grandbaby #2 in early August (Drew and Stephanie's first -a little boy)!

Babies, babies, babies.... I'll take as many as they wanna give me!

Here's the Steadman's announcement:


Then there were 4. 🎉
With hearts full of joy and gratitude, we are thrilled to announce that baby #2 is on the way!! 😍 I'm due in the middle of December, and we can't imagine a Christmas season more magical than a new baby arriving. Darsy is so excited about being a big sis and we can hardly wait for these two to meet! ☺️


And a few photos of Darsy for good measure (she is now 13 mos).  Her first birthday in her backyard and summer fun at Grammie's  house (her new fave is wearing sunglasses!)







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Monday, April 25, 2016

Mother's Day Soap Sale today!


Did you know Mother's Day is fast approaching 
on Sunday, May 8th? That's less than 2 weeks away! 

At my soap shop, we have lovely sets ready for your gift giving! We are offering a natural cedar wood soap dish PLUS three new soaps made especially for Mother's Day at a special price.  We are also selling the soap dishes separately.  They are gorgeous and handmade by a local artisan especially for us!

Plus.... the rest of the shop is now 20% OFF! 

Quantities are limited!  
The sale starts at 9:00 am PST at

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Monday, March 28, 2016



Good morning friends, I just wanted to alert you that I'm having a soap sale at 9:00 am PST TODAY!  You can take a look at what I'm offering at 
Quantities will be stocked at the sale time!

This is my last BIG sale for awhile, so feel free to STOCK UP!!

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Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Praying for Lexi - please help!


Friends, I am putting out an urgent plea for help.   

Rusty and Summer Page are longtime friends of ours and a precious family in our church.   When Rich and I were first married, we met Rusty as a small boy as we attended Bible Study in his parents' home.   After Rusty and Summer married we continued that relationship. Over the years we have been blessed to have spent some time with them both in our home and theirs and have always been blessed by their sweet family.   Recently as the director for The Master's Kids, our church's mommy-and-me preschool program, I got to have Summer, Lexi and her brother Caleb in the program.  Summer was a patient and loving mama with them, and I have always highly admired their family and approach to parenting.

Yesterday, their 6 year-old foster daughter of over 4 years, Lexi, was abruptly removed from their home because the Pages lost a years-long court battle for the right to adopt her.  The Pages have taken her into their own home, provided her with the only mommy and daddy and siblings she has ever known.  They have provided not only stability and love but have FOUGHT HARD to adopt her.  It is very complicated, but Lexi is 1/64th (1.5%) Choctaw Indian by descent, which gives the Choctaw tribe in Oklahoma the right to dictate where she lives.  They chose to place her with a distant relative of Lexi's birth father (both her birth parents have long given up their rights).  These relatives are not blood related OR even of Indian descent, and she will not be raised in the Indian culture.  This is a terrible abuse of the intent of the Indian Child Welfare Act which eventually culminated in DCFS (Department of Children Family Services) coming to the Page's home yesterday with no designated appointment time.  Within about 10 minutes flat, 3 strangers removed a crying and distressed little child and drove away.  I can't think of anything that I've ever seen personally that has been more devastating than that.  How I wish I hadn't seen it.  It keeps playing over and over in my head.  It was beyond heart wrenching and a very rude reminder of the evil in this world.    

We as a church body, along with members of the community set up a peaceful demonstration at a corner near the Page's Santa Clarita home starting Sunday morning.   Groups gathered with their families to pray and sing hymns, and to stand with and encourage the Pages and one another.  It was a blessed time to bond together and focus on the truths of God that we know - He is sovereign and good no matter what.   He loves Lexi more than we do.  He knows what is best.  His plans won't be thwarted by evil men.  He has promised "in this world we will have trouble" but that He will one day rescue us from it.   Prayers were heartfelt and desperate as we depended on God's grace and mercy to protect Lexi and comfort our breaking hearts.

That said, I want to enlist as much help for the Pages that I can using the platform of my blog.  Please take a moment of your time to sign the petition below and PLEASE SHARE.   The Pages know this is not just about Lexi but the hundreds of children that are victims of this abuse of power.  Please help BRING LEXI HOME.

Here is the petition:

Also, please follow along on these Facebook Page for updates and to see what you can do to help.

This is a most thoughtful and accurate letter written by Matt Hand, Rusty's brother in law:

Thank you!
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Sunday, March 13, 2016

Gender Reveal for grandbaby #2

We got to find out the gender of our next grandbaby in such a fun way!

Drew and Stephanie had found out the gender about a week earlier at their ultrasound, and gathered both sides of the family together at our home to share the BIG announcement.  They got a big black balloon and filled it with the proper gender color confetti.   

First, to keep us in suspense even further, Drew gave a little speech saying how blessed they were to have so many loving family members to care for their new little one.  It was sweet and all... but we just wanted to find out the gender!!  Come on!! Excitement filled the air.


And then Stephanie popped the balloon and out came BLUE!!! 
Yay for little boys!!!  
It will be so fun to have one of each!!

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Monday, February 8, 2016

Handmade Lotion Bars


A friend gave me a lotion bar for Christmas... and I loved it! It looks like a bar of soap (no wonder I like it!) but you rub it on your skin as lotion.  Brilliant!

I decided to try a recipe I found on Pinterest.  These couldn't have been easier! All you do is mix equal parts beeswax, coconut oil, and cocoa or shea butter.  I used cocoa butter because I don't love the smell of raw shea butter.   You just melt everything together on low heat, and pour into the moulds of your choice.  I used these silicon muffin moulds and the bars easily popped right out.  You can also add essential oil if you like.  I added some tangerine and they smell lovely. With such great ingredients, these will surely combat dry winter skin.

What a sweet Valentine's day gift these would be!  

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