Archive for the ‘Family & Friends’ Category

www.anniesgoathill.com spotlightMost of us, with the exception of my friends (whom I sort of envy right now) that reside on the bottom side of our globe, are into winter – dark and cold days. As I was scrolling through blogs, photos of animals, the promotion of small businesses and farms, and posters of positive thoughts, I thought about all of the brightness that those people brought to me and came up with the idea of an Annie’s Goat Hill spotlight. Why not bring good news into the world during this, seemingly, long season? We can all use a Spotlight of Warmth, it spreads.

So, beginning today, if you would like to share, or link to, one of your photos, blog posts, an article about your small business, most anything of taste relating to natural, farm, small business, encouragement and faith, and handmade personal care products on this blog – I encourage you to contact me (anniesgoathill@gmail.com) with your submissions and ideas.

I have some folks in mind already, which leads me to remind those of you that are small business owners and authors to always provide contact information.


Share, Encourage, and Grow

Read Full Post »

I have this little garden spot that I love. 

Each spring I plant easy flowers in the spot.  I use some of the plants, such as the Calendula, in infusions for salves and other products. 

I plant herbs further down the small garden, and tomatoes.

Today I stood in the rain to take this photo.


I am so grateful for the rain.  We needed it.

As the thunderstorm and rain moved through, and as I saw the growing world replenished with the much-needed outburst, I thought about how blessed I am by my friends, family and customers.  You replenish my soul! You (and the good Lord above) replenish me on a daily basis.

May you have life-sustaining water, and a lot of it!  There is no match to true happiness and satisfaction.

Have a beautiful day!

Read Full Post »

Have you ever wondered why a death seems to bring the worst out in a family?

I have, and I am.

This is what I have witnessed the past few days as each of my husband’s siblings were briefly called to be told about their mother’s death:

  • Sibling 1 tells lies about sibling 2 (twisting  a conversation way beyond sensibility)
  • Sibling 3 whines and says he has no time or money
  • Sibling 4 changes the subject and discusses a family incident that never happened
  • Sibling 5 …

I’ll stop there.


I have no answers.   And I really want to stay out of the thick of it all.  I have no intentions of hurting feelings.  I love to see families that are close, with unbreakable bonds, but they are often not the norm.  Mine isn’t, his isn’t.  We do our best.

Prayer has been my steadfast. I choose to stand beside my husband.  If you ask me what his best quality is, I will tell you without hesitation, “Honesty.” We agreed a long time ago to be open and tell it like it is, or to be silent when needed.  There are no motives except to live life peacefully.  Honesty and integrity is the best policy.  Life has enough challenges without creating more of your own.

Sometimes when people are under stress it is best to take the quiet path.  In my case, it involves a lot of overlooking and stamina.

I am not proud.  I simply have a lot in my life that needs my energy.

This will also pass.

I would love to hear your thoughts.  Why do you think families turn against each other at the worst of times? Perhaps they do not know how to deal with each other to begin with, especially when faced with something so monumental?

Have a beautiful weekend!

Read Full Post »

The local postal carriers are used to picking up many packages from my home, but seldom do they deliver one to me.

Yesterday, as my husband retrieved the mail from the box, I saw a familiar package.  My first thought was, “Why was it returned? Did I not calculate the postage correctly?”

The package had not been returned at all.  In fact, it was addressed to me, from a wonderful customer.

Susanne B., a thoughtful warm person from South Carolina, surprised me with these beautiful hand-made gifts.  And I cherish them!

I actually had been wanting to try some hand crocheted or knitted wash (or dish) clothes.  Now I have 6 beautiful ones.  They are soft, delicate, yet sturdy.  And the neck scarf is gorgeous! Susanne stitched a “Hand-made by Susanne” tag inside the scarf.  Absolutely fantastic!

I cannot thank you enough, Susanne. 

I couldn’t wait to make an announcement of the surprise package here!

Read Full Post »

As a small business owner I find great joy in the various daily contacts that I make.

Many years ago I thought networking meant selling.  It does not mean that at all! To network, you are communicating via a common thread.

The stone wall no longer holds anyone in.  Networking can come from a blog post or comment, a tweet on Twitter, a post on Facebook, an email, or an actual conversation with a business owner, a banker, or it can be as simple as conversing with a person while standing in line at the post-office. 

Owning an internet-based company in the country could be lonely.  But it is not.  I so much appreciate the contact.  The contacts come with an added benefit, learning.  Listen to your friends, your casual contacts, your customers.  Really listen.  We live in a fascinating world, a world full of brand-new knowledge, just waiting to be gained.

Who would ever think work could be so enjoyable?

My hope for everyone: work towards doing something you enjoy, and enjoy working it once you get there!

Read Full Post »


I hope you had a great Christmas!

We had a very relaxing Christmas day! I think I gained a few pounds.  Well, I know I gained a few pounds.  Friends and family indulged us with candy, cookies, not to mention the pie that I already had prepared.  Dinner was a pan of lasagna that held its own for 3 days!

Christmas was a windy, wet and cold day.  It was good to be inside.  It was wonderfully quiet.  At the same time I missed my family (my son’s families, my grand-children, my deceased parents, and especially my sister and nieces).

Spike, our boxer, ended up off his kibble.  His toe swelled up.  He chewed his toenail off last night, yes, down to skin level.  Today he went to the vet.  He had not been weighed in many years.  I guessed him at 90 pounds.  He looked thin this morning, dehydrated, even his collar was hanging loose.  They sure drop weight quickly.  He weighed in at 89.8 pounds! Besides that astonishment (size-wise), the doctor put him on a pain med and antibiotics, and gave us well-wishes as we went out the door.  Perhaps now I can sleep a bit better.  How and why do we allow ourselves to love our animals as much as we do? It scares me, it truly does.

I had to replace my CPU, translating to no new camera.  I did a back up as my old machine slowed down.  It sounded like a barber’s electric razor.  As I sat at my desk Christmas Eve morning I was almost startled out of my seat by the racket of the dying machine.  The new CPU is working and the files are slowly being restored.  Life is good.

I would love to hear some of your Christmas stories and adventures!

And, I hope sunshine returned to you as well! It is a beautiful day after Christmas here!

God bless.

Read Full Post »

I wish you a Merry Christmas!

As you celebrate Christ’s birth, may your Christmas be filled with love, peace, all that you wish it to be!

P.S. I also believe in Santa.  Note to Santa, I need a new camera! I promise to not drop the new one (twice).

Read Full Post »

Are you ready for Christmas?

Usually I do not know how to answer that question because I do not do a lot of decorating at Christmas, and gift buying is limited to a few special little ones.

This year I am ready.  I went pink. 

No, I didn’t put up a pink Christmas tree.  The photo did remind me, however, of how I do my shopping.  For the grand daughters, and regardless of what I set out to purchase, I end up with bags full of pink fluffy things.  You know, the comfy girly items from slippers to nightgowns, to soft fluffy pink blankets to snuggle under. 

Today I will be putting up our tree.  Guess what? It isn’t pink.  It is a large ceramic tree, hand-painted, with beautiful boxers doing all sorts antics on and around the tree, along with garlands made from dog bones and other treats.  After my first boxer got busy with the Christmas tree about 7 years ago, and I still have the ornaments (many broken), I opted to go with a permanent tree that wasn’t in harm’s way. 

I may just bring out my Christmas village as well.  My favorite pieces are the church and stable. 

My husband has a head cold, and I am down in my back.  Funny how when I walk I feel as if my legs are going in one direction, my waist and back in another.  But, sales and soap making are right on target.  My in-store sale ends tomorrow, and the last day for priority shipping (to deliver by Christmas Day) is 12/21/09.  So…I am winding down in that respect.  I am blessed, absolutely blessed.  Very happy.  After Monday…I am going to recuperate at the desk, making business plans for 2010!

And…of course, I am going to enjoy my Christmas, with those that I love, and with the true meaning of CHRIST-mas close to my heart!

Have a wonderful day!

Read Full Post »

My Laughing Buddies...Nieces...During A Pouting Moment

I have a rather warped sense of humor.  When something tickles my funny bone there is no stopping my laughter.

Some of my best Thanksgiving memories are those spent at my father’s house, with my sister and nieces in attendance.

My father didn’t like the giggling…honestly, he was a grouch.  He actually was proud of being grouchy, which was funny on certain days.  I respected my father, but I had a good time with my family despite his grumpiness.

After a long day of visiting and shopping on Black Friday, my niece and I got the hysterics when we retrieved the leftover gravy from my father’s refrigerator.  It definitely had the appeal of brown gelatin.  I looked at her, she was watching me, and the laughter began.  Silly for hours.  Thanksgiving always brings up the discussion of the Jello gravy.

One Thanksgiving at my father’s house included Samson, a male boxer that had just entered our lives.  I believe he was 9 weeks old.  He snorted, played with every toy he could find, he had a grand time.  My sister said, “Mary, I think that dog needs some sinus medicine!” All of us were getting used to the boxer puppy.  Ahhh…boxer love began.  And he was part of the family too.

I’ll never forget the day when my husband, the silly nut, patted the wrong person on the tail end.  I have NO idea how he managed it.  But he got my step-mother instead of myself.  She was thrilled.  I was in hysterics.  She used to flirt with him something terrible, ha! I rather enjoyed seeing her delight, and snickered at my nutty man!

My family is now spread pretty far apart, we are in three states.

This holiday we are having dinner with our best friends.  And yes, we all have a sense of humor.  The stories I could tell…but they fall under the category “you would have had to been there.”

I am thankful for my fond memories, and I am sure there will be many more.  Laughter and love, nothing better in life.  I hope the same for you.

Blessings to you all!

Read Full Post »

Misc 001

I am having a busy Saturday in the office as well as in the shop.  But what I have not failed to notice is the beautiful color!

Have you caught yourself this season, even on the darkest of days, stepping out the door, sensing that something was different? I admit…one day I was deep in thought, walking down the front walk, and suddenly sensed fire.  It was the large autumn adorned tree that hovers over the slope above the pond.  Extremely bright colors.  No fire.  A gentle reminder perhaps to remain appreciative of the change in season? I thought so.

I am not fond of autumn because of what follows, winter.  What I do love are the cool temperatures, the color, and I dearly love to see the harvest going on around us.  The grain trucks have been rolling up and down the road.  I can hear the grain elevators and dryers running through the night.  Such a blessing…a reminder, life is very good.  A bounty of blessings!

Speaking of blessings…in a short 1/2 hour I am shutting down the office.  This is a weekend for peace, relaxation, and re-connection with friends.  I hope you can do the same.


“Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns.”  – George Eliot

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »