Hello!!! Yes, it’s getting frosty around here, icy mornings, but no snow for us yet! That’s okay, we make our own here on Christmas Island! MUSICA
Making magic with shiny glass things, snowy things, lacy things, and glitter things ~ sparkly star bobeche candles, paper-cut scherenschnitte trees, snowflakes and angel chimes. And my favorite pure white Swedish candles. And Christmas musica!
Before the tree, before anything, my favorite place to decorate is the sideboard in our dining room. This wonderful old thing was in the house when we bought it. I think it’s been here forever . . . too heavy to move!
I tied the snowflakes to the lace on the runner.
And voila, I’m singing Snow, Snow Snow 🎵 with Bing . . . Holiday Inn was on TV and I was in my wee winter wonderland!
More decorating, out with the regular stuff, in with the red!
Little Christmas chocolate bars . . .
And wrapping presents no matter how small!
I don’t have linoleum, I scuff across the wood floor in my lambie slippers waiting for the kettle to boil. It’s almost the same thing.
Yup, time to oil the table again. Here it is, soaking in mineral oil I slathered on with a pastry brush. I kept waiting for Jack to jump up, but somehow he senses the danger! Note the letters J O Y in the window? Note the E? Yup, Joe’s handiwork! He cut it out of cardboard and added it. I love it so much it stays forever.
I’ve been cleaning and organizing . . . it’s about as good as it gets, clean as a whistle ~ only job now is to stand and stare lovingly.
My love in action! Time to get the tree and some roping!
Went to the farmstand down the street called Eden . . . look how cute the wreaths are. Love the one shaped like a tree, especially the base, like a trunk! Cute!
But this is what Joe makes! He finds all the holly and boxwood and pine in our backyard and makes my very favorite wreaths . . . I get to add the birds and pears.
Here’s his little workshop!
Our tree is up and decorated!
We usually have a table where the tree goes, which we love because it means we can eat in front of the fire . . . usually we take it out, but this time we decided to keep it for present wrapping! (And eating in front of the fire!)
XOXAs we put the tree up we traced back all the old ornaments . . . such memories!
This doesn’t go on the tree, it hangs in the “wood room” (handily named because it’s a completely paneled room that my girlfriend Lowely calls “the snug”), it’s Joe’s red-felt stocking, the one his family used for their pets’ Christmas presents, which is why there are many cross-outs . . . I recognize all the names from Joe’s “God Bless Mommy and Daddy . . .” prayer ~ they’re all included on this stocking: “Susie, Nosey, Inky, Puddikins, Sammy, Georgia, and Trisket.” Mas MUSICA?
The ornaments have all the memories attached . . . ornaments that were at Holly Oak too!
And this is our house, way back when . . . It was built in 1849. There was some sort of Victorian tower added on at one time, you can just barely see it there. Rather an interesting mix of architectural styles . . . it’s long gone, and no diary has been found to tell me what they must have been thinking! That doesn’t stop me from imagining. Look there’s our barn too . . . And the people who lived here grouped on the front porch. I’ve always wondered about their Christmases, if they put their tree in the bay window like we do. My studio is in a room off the living room ~ it used to be called the Music Room . . . maybe they put it there. 🎄
This is a souvenir of Christmas 2005 at our house in California . . . I guess we were short on paper because anyone who wanted to say anything, as we were all running in and out, left their message here! Notes are from my brother Chuck and his wife Judy, my niece Heidi, Joe, me, my mom, my sister Shelly, my brother Brad. Not easy to get serendipitous interaction of family members on a piece of paper . . . snatched up and kept forever. We remind me of The Waltons! 💞
Here are the first four of us . . . Me, in the back, my brother Jim on the left, then Stephen, and the baby is Chuck. Who we called “Butterball” … who soon would be trained by moi to answer a knock on the wall by climbing out of his crib and toddling in to sleep with me! Wouldn’t you? Such a doll!
Me, and my four brothers, Jim, Chuck, Brad (looking at camera), Steve, and on the right, my girlfriend (because I needed one and always had one from the beginning of time) Janie Nielson who lived in the house across the street, and who’s mother was a piano teacher and played the Skaters Waltz while Janie and I “skated” across her polished wood floors in our socks.
This is my mom, with her brothers Bob and Dick. Look how my mom holds that doll. She loves it. She was getting ready for US!
Here’s us again, Stephen, Jim, and me (I look like my mom!) . . . And I think that might be my Ginny doll! It’s the day after Christmas and we are decked out in our Christmas finery. Look at Jim’s Bowie knife, and his boots!!! Fancy! My Grandma took me shopping for those red shoes, and afterwards we had a chocolate eclair in a doily-studded bakery with red booths.
See what a Christmas tree can do to you if you are listening?
I like it when it’s not in focus!
My Christmas gift to myself is meditation. I worry that the world is NOT so in love as I’d like it to be. In my meditation, it IS ~ because I “think on these things.” I dream of a better tomorrow and see it happening, all my childhood dreams come true. A little like Teletubby Land. Or like the English Countryside. (Same thing.) The quiet morning when no one is up is my time to count my blessings. Nothing is ever perfect ~ as you know, real life has troubles and worries for all of us, but when I count my blessings, it’s easy to know that many people in this crazy world would be ecstatic to have what we have. And another someone would be thrilled to have what they have. And when you realize this, the only thing you can say is, Thank you. Meditation, walks to the water, my boyfriend for life, Jack, family, friends, luv-lee memories, home, cooking something, books, a hot bubble bath with an ice-cold bottle of water to drink, keeping my diary, watching The Bishop’s Wife, my paint brush, the little things that make a red letter day.
Whatever is true . . .
(I needed to find flannel jammies for my mom WITH pockets and I did and I’m so happy, it had to go into the diary!) On the right is a place card saved from a dinner party we went to the other night. Book of memories.
Whatever is praiseworthy . . .
Whatever is admirable . . .
Whatever is right . . .
Whatever is excellent . . .
Whatever is pure (love) . . . 💞Oh, the power, to make home sweet home just the way you like it. Four walls, with heat! And clean sheets! So lucky.
Tomorrow night my girlfriends are coming over for a Secret Santa party in front of the fire . . . I mixed our names and drew one for each of us . . . we are gifting either something that we own that we’d like to give to our person, OR, we can spend up to $20. 👏
Now, some things to share . . . For our UK Girlfriends, I’ve been informed that there are a few cups left of several designs, including the two above (which we are totally sold out of at the studio) ~ check HERE to see the designs. So sorry, they only ship within the UK. And these will be the last they will be carrying. But here are two bookmarks for all of you ~ you can print them out on heavy paper, laminate them if you like ~ they make cute stocking stuffers! For Prayer for the Little Home, click HERE. For the 2019 Full Moon bookmark (lists all the full moons for 2019), click HERE.from me. 💞🎄 xoxo
And guess what else?
Yes! while I was writing this post, a big package was delivered to my kitchen porch.
The samples are here! Of course I had to stop and take a quick look.
I’m thrilled at the way they turned out. The photos above were taken of my mockups, but the ones below . . .
. . . are the real thing! Look how cute! I’ll never get this posted if I stop and take pictures of all of them right now. But I will, first thing in the morning, and I’ll send them to Kellee and she’ll put everything up for presale tomorrow. The ones that arrived today are just for approval, the real things will arrive at our Studio early January … a January/Valentine surprise!
These two looked so cute together I had to take a picture of them! The ornament is surprisingly lightweight! I’ll put it on our Christmas tree, but in real life it will hang in my kitchen! Or, MAYBE, it should be my Secret Santa Gift!? The little vases you wanted, “Courage” and the others, are just adorable. I’m so excited!
Well, anyway, too much wonderfulness ~ it’s that time of year, and here ⬆️, never forget, the gifts that truly matter . . . time for the little things in life.
This is our lovely view from our dining room windows. The other day, in a major feat of engineering, they closed off our street, brought in a huge crane, and removed the spire and the “bell box” from this lovely old building for repairs. It was a huge operation, we bundled up and ran out there with our cameras . . . I’ll show you next time. We’re going to miss the bell that rings on Sundays, but when they put it back, probably in a year, it’s going to be even better and start playing the hymns and the songs, like Que Sera Sera, that it used to play.
Wishing you the most peaceful of holidays! Happy Christmas dear Girlfriends, Merry Hanukkah, Feliz Navidad, Cheery Boxing Day, Joyeux Noël, Jolly Winter Solstice, Festive Kwanzaa, and Vrolijk Kerstfeest. And More! Big world out there! Blessings to you and yours from us and ours!