About Blog Title...

As a child, it was one of my greatest delights to visit my grandparents in the spring when the whip-poor-wills began to call. Grandma and Grandpa lived in a remote valley of the Ozark Mountains where there were trees a plenty, and, seemingly, a whip-poor-will, or two, in each one.
My grandmother insisted that a whip-poor-will's call was not "whip-poor-will," but instead, "chip-butter-white-oak." I would listen really hard trying to hear it exactly as she said it was, but all I could hear was "whip-poor-will, whip-poor-will,..." But, I never let on to her.
I remember my grandpa watching and listening, with an amused look on his face, to one of these listening sessions. Shortly after that he began to call me, just for fun, "Chip Butter." It is a name I am proud to wear for I still love to hear that long, lonesome call on a warm summer's eve. And, sometimes, when I listen really, really hard, it seems I can hear quite clearly, "chip-butter-white-oak, chip-butter-white-oak..."

Thursday, January 9, 2014

The New Year...

The New Year is, quite frankly, behaving rather badly weather wise, dishing out huge helpings of cold winds and ice. Today marks the fourth day of this brand new year that I have not walked over the big hill behind our house, to the pond, and beyond...not that I didn't want to.  There were two days I was stopped by the fierce cold winds that came howling down from the Arctic Tundra.  And, yesterday and today there was, and still is,  ice covering the ground making each step a treacherous one.  Not even with my trusty Yaktrax Walkers over the soles of my boots, would I risk the climb up the hill and along the pond bank.  I did, however, ride along in the tractor with the Bossman to feed the cattle.  We stopped by the pond long enough to scare away the Great Blue Heron, once again without a chance to get the picture I have been seeking.   The pond was frozen over and the ice was actually quite thick, something that hasn't happened here in a number of years...really looked like a large ice skating rink.  The boat was frozen in place, and was going nowhere, for sure.

There seemed to be an abundance of wildlife, besides the Great Blue Heron, out today in search of something to eat, no doubt.  The bald eagles were clearly watching, from their icy perches, every move down below, and the poor ducks were just hanging out waiting for the ice to melt on the pond.

Inside, it has been hard for me to stay away from the warm fire that continuously burns in the wood heater.  My feet are always toasty warm in my favorite wool socks.  The big bad flu bug that has caught so many, passed me by because of the socks, I think.  My doctor's advice (that's me) for staying healthy consists of  (1)keeping my feet warm, (2) drinking lots of water, (3) getting plenty of outdoor exercise, (5) eating an apple a day, and (6) avoiding stress.  I am not sure I always do a good job on the last one.

Sitting by the fire has given me opportunity to rewrite most of the notes that I had jotted down this past year...things I want to remember about this and that.  My journals are just simple little notebooks, but I did fancy them up a bit with a cloth label on the front cover.  Making books with gorgeous cloth covers seems to be a popular thing these days...maybe I will look more into that before the year is ended.

After a little rest through the holidays and beyond,  I am now working on a new doll.  I have redesigned the pattern again, this time sewing in a flat seat in hopes the doll will sit nicely.  I have shredded some old cloth to use as stuffing to give it more heft, and hopefully also help in the way it sits. 


  1. Too risky out today for this old woman! Poor cattle!
    Love your journal books. I've wanted to make a quilted fabric cover for my Bible.
    Looking forward to another of your beautiful dolls!

  2. Not sure which post to comment on. All are just so beautiful, as always.You live in such a beautiful wilderness, Mary. I can see how you feel the need to walk in it each day. Thank you so much for sharing it with us. Hope you are taking the time to work on more of your fabulously original dolls, keep warm dear friend...

  3. So different to here, we are expecting 43 degrees C next week it will be hot, hot and just hope no one starts a fire.I cant get photos onto my blog at the moment, hope it is fixed soon.We had a lovely walk this morning on the cliffs over the sea, for the first time in ages I forgot my camera. Look forward to seeing your new doll, they look amazing.

  4. I always love looking at the place you live. I did feel sorry for the cows though. You can make a lot of plans sitting by the fire, for your new doll and all the things you want to do this year. Your advise is good, doctor Mary.

  5. What a beautiful pair of eagles, I wonder if the have a nest nearby? I too have a special place in front of the wood stove. We certainly have been getting a big dose of winter this year. Looking forward to seeing your next dolly!

  6. I love the pictures of the birds. When you said the ducks were hanging out waiting for the ice to thaw, I didn't realize you meant they were hanging out on the ice!

  7. Love your journals and through my years thought of doing this and never did
    Just bits and pieces and page after page - here and there :)
    I envy your wood heater and mine is remember well.
    I keep my hot water bottle at the end of my bed at night, drink lots of water and stress I am still trying to conquer...