Thursday, December 8, 2016

Christmas Cheer


Hello, sweet friends, I hope you 
are enjoying this festive season! 

I have been very busy adding some 
Christmas Cheer to my little cottage 
in the woods. 

Won't you come inside? 
I've made some gingerbread scones
and hot cocoa and I would 
love for you to join me! 


Let me take your coat ......


I'll hang it here on the village coat-rack 
that my dear Father made me years ago. 

I created the winter weaving when 
we first moved here. 


We are expecting snow and the skies above 
Mt. Rainier foretell the future. 



Come in and warm up before the fire
while I prepare the cocoa.



It's been so cold! Brrrrrrrrr! 


I just took the scones out of the oven
and they are steaming up the cake dome!

They are so good with butter and marmalade :)


You can find the recipe in the current issue 
of 'Tea Time' magazine. 
I love this magazine! It has 
wonderful recipes and tea table settings
 for every occasion. 

I wish my scones looked as pretty - 
mine look like hockey pucks, 
but they are really good! haha! 


I have added some Christmas Cheer to my kitchen 
since the last time you have come to visit! 

My table runner was a vintage find at the  
flea market I attended with my daughter, Jennie
last month. 

I found quite a few treasures there.......


This sugar and creamer set was a gift 
from a loved one years ago. 


The cookie plate is their companion. 


I won this darling little tree last year 
from a dear blogger friend, Celestina. 

She has the blog, Southern DayDreams
where you can find her Etsy shop,
which has the sweetest treasures. I just found some 
darling things for gifts, which I will show 
you after they are gifted! :)

xoxo

You can see that I have brought out my winter plaids
for my sitting area. 


I sewed these last year from a set of king-sized flannel sheets. 

I love how plaid makes everything look so cozy! 


I've gathered a thrift store painting, Hudson blanket
I've had for years, a crocheted throw, and sherpa and suede pillows
 to make a comfortable little spot for lounging. 


The little red lantern was another flea market find
this year. I set it into a fluted tart pan with a sprig of holly.
It's been retro-fitted for a slender candle,
which I have yet to find!


My vintage enamel top farm table doubles as a wrapping center.


The drawer holds tape, scissors and tags. 



The 'Christmas Memories' photo album 
was a gift from my sweet Sis. 


Sweet memories inside......

My dear Mother holding my sister, Kim, 
me and my Grandmother, Edith. 
I was 3 years old. 

My Grandmother was already a widow by
then. My Grandfather, Albert, died when 
I was a baby.
Together they raised 8 children
through the great depression and WWII. 


My 'dog' calendar and some hand-stitched cocktail
napkins I found at the flea market. 
You can see an American Eskimo dog on
the bottom left :) 


Yes, Kai, that would be you! 


Whitey Bear could care less......
He's in dream land, a beam of sunlight
warming him up from the sky-light. 


My 'Kitchen Queen' Hoosier cabinet 
gets a bright update for the season, too. 


The little houses are vintage candles :)
I just found the Scotty dog. 
The Christmas card was sent from 
a friend a few years ago.
I save all my cards :)
They are a rare gift these days! 


My spice rack gets a festive update, too. 
I just found the sweet green apron. 
I love holiday aprons!


All ready for some holiday baking. 
The Jelly jars hold cookie sprinkles
and candies. 



My collection of vintage enamelware, spice tins
and potholders make my stove a happy place 
this time of year! 


Vintage tins in the appropriate colors make wonderful
holders for winter greens. 


I've been busy crocheting some sweet 
dish-cloths and scrubbies, too.


You can find the pattern books
at www.marymaxim.com.

The pattern booklet for these are Here.

The dishcloth is made with Sugar 'n Cream cotton
and the scrubby is made with Mary Maxim Scrub It yarn. 


 A pretty transfer-ware plate.
I wish I had a whole set of these!

The truck ornament represents wonderful family memories. 


We had a family truck just like it - a 1984 Ford Ranger, 
nick-named, 'The Greenie'. 

Here you can see Ramblin' Man taking a break from 
mowing, leaning against her in front of the holly tree
about 17 years ago. 

Our two beloved dogs back then,
 Little Bear and Twiggy, keep him company. 

All four of my children learned to drive in The Greenie, 
and this little truck was their 'first car'. It became quite a legend 
around our small town :) My children were very close
in age, so they learned to drive, one right after the other,
and The Greenie was a fixture at our local high school
for years, shuttling teenagers on many an adventure. 


When the kids moved on to more reliable vehicles
after getting their own jobs, and eventually left for college,
The Greenie retired with Ramblin' Man and I. 

Our very last ride in her was to get our 
Christmas tree one year. By then, it was too 
risky to shut off the ignition, as she was prone 
to stalling and reluctant to re-start, so we left her running
as we picked out our tree at the local boy-scout stand. 

When we went to load the tree in the back, 
she was surrounded in a cloud of steam,
as her radiator was giving out. 

We were only 2 miles from home, so 
we set off, rolling down our country road
enveloped in steam and laughing all the way home
at our neighbor's startled expressions as we passed by. 

There was so much steam that Ramblin' Man and I had to 
hang our heads out the windows to see where we were going. 

That was the last trip for our trusty old Greenie,
but fond memories remain :) 


Thank you for visiting, dear friends! 
I hope you have some fond Christmas memories, too! 

xoxo

I am sorry that I have not been keeping up on visiting 
you, my dears! My computer went down and has been upgraded 
by my 'computer genius' son :) Now it is running 
fine once more and I can stop in to visit you again. 

xoxo 

Sending hugs and Christmas blessings. 
xoxo

Karen

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Ah! December.......


Hello, my friends, can you believe it is already December? 

I am always amazed at how quickly a year can go by! 

It seems like yesterday that I was sharing the beautiful 
blossoms of spring, and now here we are, 
counting the final days of 2016.

Come along with me and we will look for some
winter beauty with five lovely quotes
for the season.


Although some may say December is bleak, 
I find that these shortened days 
have their own fragile beauty. 


As long as I've lived here (35 years), I can
honestly say that no two moments are the same
when watching nature here in the foothills
near Mt. Rainier.


The most fleeting of moments can reveal some
amazing surprises.


Nature is an ever evolving force and there is no 
better proof than when watching weather over 
a mountain range. 

It is only in winter that the snow covered trees
turn this lovely shade of pink as the sun goes down
on the horizon. 

Here you can see the highest point of the tree line
on the flanks of Mt. Rainier. 


It's a fairy-land forest! 
Although......I would not want to be there
when the sun goes down! 

xoxo

"Melancholy were the sounds on a winter's night."

- Virginia Woolf - 
Jacob's Room


The patterns of bare branches etched across a gray sky
have their own ethereal beauty.

xoxo

" The lost leaves measure our years;
they are gone as the days are gone."

- Richard Jefferies -
The Life of the Fields (1908)


And when you take a closer look at their feet,
you might find the most delicate of sylvan glades.


Perhaps if you are quick enough,
you might see a gnome or two :)


While lesser trees retreat into dormancy,
in winter our beautiful evergreens
steal the show.

There is no other music quite like
the wind playing the boughs of
a venerable fir when all the forest is
in wintry silence.


The fissures and cracks of a mighty fir's trunk
demand reverence.

xoxo

"Spring passes and one remembers one's innocence.
Summer passes and one remembers one's exuberance.
Autumn passes and one remembers one's reverence.
Winter passes and one remembers one's perseverance."

- Yoko Ono -



Without the ruffles and frills of leaves
to distract us, we notice the lesser forms
of moss, lichen and ferns.


xoxo

"What good is the warmth of summer,
without the cold of winter to give it sweetness."

- John Steinbeck -
Travels with Charley



Even in winter we are never alone
in the forest.

Here a Northern Flicker peers from the branches
of a nearly naked Big Leaf Maple.



The neighbor's well-dressed horse browses
on Salal as we return from our walk
in the forest.


Kai waits for Whitey Bear and I, with
the impatience of youth.

The two of us are slowing down a bit
as we head into our own winter years.

Just a bit.......



Holly and Ivy have their own gentle grace in winter.

Who needs flowers when you have such beauty?


Although, Sedum begs to differ.......



There are jewels in winter, too.

Here, the flying jewels of our Anna's Hummingbirds
lift the spirits on a dreary day.



Berries are winter's jewels, more beautiful
than pearls.

Who can deny the richness of Barberry and Winter Berry
on a cold, rainy day?


Gatherings from winter strolls
grace my vintage hand-turned wooden bowl.


I found this bowl on one of my many
antiquing excursions with my Dear Mother.

I still remember the day and the shop
and the fun we used to have.

My Mother had the rare gift of being able
to laugh at herself. Her nickname was
'Muddle Fuddle' and we had many a
laugh over the silly things she would do.

Like the time we went to the mall
at Christmas-time and forgot
where we parked and even what
door we came in!

After flagging down a security guard
in a golf cart to take us around,
(apparently a common
occurrence this time of year)
I looked over at my Mother and
noticed her coat was put on inside out
in her haste.

We laughed and laughed all the way home
thinking of what that poor security guard
must have thought of us.

I miss those wonderful days
and my bowl brings back sweet memories.


Sprinkled with a bit of balsam essential oil,
my gatherings makes a lovely woodland potpourri that
can be added to with each outing.


The days are short this time of year....
Time for tea!

Thank you for coming along, Dear Friends!
I hope you, too, find some winter beauty
wherever you are!

xoxo

"Surely everyone is aware of the divine pleasures which
attend a wintry fireside; candles at four o'clock, warm
hearthrugs, tea, a fair tea-maker, shutters closed,
curtains flowing in ample draperies to the floor,
whilst the wind and rain are raging audibly without."

- Thomas de Quincey -

xoxo

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Five On Friday

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