Tuesday, November 29, 2016


Hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving 
with your families and friends 
gathered round. 

 Our's was fantastic.
  An excellent meal 
eaten in the glow of a beautiful sunset, 
in the company of loving family, 
counting our past blessings 
and all the 
blessings to come...

...and while
 we were enjoying our time together,
 Jake was strolling the streets of 
Spain and Italy, 
making memories 
that he will be
 blessed with 

I am certainly enjoying 
all the preparations for Christmas 
that are abundant in blog land now. 

 As excited as I am, 
I can't seem to get much of 
my own up and doing. 
 I start with the main tree 
and that sets the tone
 for what is 
to come.

Last year (above) 
we got rid of our big faux tree
 and put up a fresh one.

 We have decided 
that is the way we wanted to go
 in the future, 
but the trouble with that idea is 
we don't have the luxury
 of having the tree
 close at hand 
to be able to put it up when we want to.

  I normally like to start 
the day after Thanksgiving 
but this year
 we have had days that were 
so wet and nasty 
that we didn't want to get caught 
in the down pour.

I have a theme in mind 
so decided to jump ahead 
and carry that through to
 the parlor mantle.

Since I want to use fresh greens, 
I picked from some bushes 
in the garden 
until we get the tree.

They looked pretty at first 
and the ones in water, 
in the red Dollar Tree vases, 
look pretty still, 
but they don't hold up well
 out of water.

 But, still 
I have managed to set the picture
 of what I want
 the final outcome 
to be.


The sitting room, 
as opposed to the parlor, 
is telling me
 what the theme should be.

 It definitely says 
it wants to be 
a more casual 
woodland setting...

...I think the plaid ribbon on the wreath 
dictated this particular way to go.

  I wanted a tree 
in this room also 
but the floor space is limited 
so I took the top of a 
smaller faux tree we had 
and put it in an old stoneware crock
 and placed it on the oak end table.

  Because of the earthy feeling
 I was getting from the room,
 I thought the cotton stems
 might be a good addition 
and then some yarn pom poms
 for a touch of color
 instead of 
bright and shiny ornaments...

...it's funny 
how ideas just 
seem to evolve.


I have to tell you
 about these pillows I got on Amazon. 
 I found them quite by accident 
and the prices were so good 
that I had to give them a try. 
 I figured I didn't have 
much to lose...

...they didn't look too bad
 when they first arrived,
 at least not something
 that an iron couldn't cure.

 They took awhile to get here 
and I still am waiting for two more.

 They say they are 16" square
 but they are bigger 
one way than the other
 so a 16" pillow form doesn't fit.
  The openings are zippered 
but not very large 
so it was almost impossible 
to get the form in.
  I ended up stuffing them 
with loose filler. 
 I had the idea of adding the pom poms
 all the way round 
but the letters are so close to the seam 
that they would be covered up
 on the sides,
 so just did the four corners.

I might yet add 
some to the other one
 after I stuff it a little fuller. 
 What I thought looked like a green tree
 is actually dark blue, 
although it looks black in the photo, 
but it does go with
 the colors in the room.
 The others that I haven't received yet
 look black with white writing,
 but that remains to be seen.

 The Captain thinks 
the pom poms are ridiculous 
but it looked too plain for me.

 No matter how you might feel 
about their looks, 
you can't dispute their price:

Blue Tree: $1.81 
 Merry Christmas: $ .91.

 The two yet to come
 are $2 and $3.

 How do you like me now?


 was a beautiful day and,
 tomorrow will be the same
 so we can go look 
for our tree.

We are still working 
on our current project 
and I'm counting on a Christmas reveal 
and I promise 
it will still be Christmas,
 even if it is
 in July...

 more Cottage Christmas next time 
and don't forget
 the new season of 
Fixer Upper
 starts tonight!


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Tuesday, November 22, 2016


we give thanks for the
Food we've been given

 we give thanks for the
Houses we live in

 we give thanks for the
Sun shining above, but

 we give thanks for the
we love."

Author Unknown

While you gather 
with the ones you love, 
have a 
wonderful Thanksgiving.


Tuesday, November 15, 2016


This year
 is just flying by.

 In a few days
 it will be Thanksgiving 
and then, shortly,

We will be spending 
Thanksgiving in Santa Cruz
 with Tami and Tim.

 Jake will be in Spain
 and Tami has just started a new job. 
 She has volunteered 
for many years 
at the animal shelter 
and they finally
 have hired her full time. 
 She has been waiting 
for this chance for a long time 
and is over the moon but,
 as a newbie, 
she will have to work on 
Thanksgiving Day and 
the day after...

...since we celebrated 
our family Thanksgiving early,
 before Jacenda left for Spain,
 we are doing something different
 this year. 

 The four of us
 are having dinner at 
The Crow's Nest,
 a great restaurant situated at 
the Santa Cruz Yacht Harbor. 
 It will be nice and relaxing
 with none of the fuss 
that goes along with 
preparing a big meal.  
we will go back to the kid's house 
where Tim has made a
 surprise dessert.

Even though we won't be home, 
I still have like to decorate.

 The Captain made a riser 
for the dining room table
 out of an old fence board 
and the Harvest Family 
stands there 
among the fruits (and vegetables) 
of their labor...

...the Captain and I 
eat our dinners 
in their company 
each evening.

I picked the last of
 the hydrangeas 
and added them to a straw wreath form 
where I hope 
they will dry nicely 
while the teddy bears
 are enjoying a picnic 
in the tiny pumpkin patch 


Thank you all
 for the nice birthday wishes 
and I wanted to share with you 
my gifts.

 Although I picked
 them out myself,
 it still is a thrill for me
 when the Captain puts me in front
 of the doors to Home Goods 
and bids me to 
go forth
 and conquer!

A pretty Christmas pillow.
  Love the shade of red 
and what resembles a pattern of 
snow flakes...

...cute plates 
for dessert or
 a Christmas salad...

...a sweet little cake stand 
just the right size for

...and a vintage tin Santa 
with pink cheeks and 
a cheery smile.

Found this 
pretty harvest garland 
at Michael's 
for half price...

...and a grape ivy plant, 
picked up at an antique shop, 
along with one other gift 
that I will surprise you with 
at another time.

Hope you have a wonderful week.


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