Tuesday, November 27, 2018


All my dwellers 
had a wonderful Thanksgiving 
and have given me their permission 
to say...

"Hope you all had the same."

The excitement is building around here.

 Even though I am a mess 
with a mixture of fall and Christmas
 decorations strung all over the place.

  I am trying not to complain,
 as I know the Mistress is
 trying hard to make me put
 my best foot forward.

It is always
one step forward and two steps back
 around here every time there is 
a seasonal decor change. 

 I am the oldest
 soul in this family
 so I try to keep the worries down 
to only a few creaks and groans,
 but it is not easy 
when you are 
139 years old.

The Mistress 
has no idea 
how we handled things in the past, 
only that we
 Victorians do Christmas up right! 

 I would so love to tell her 
exactly how it was
 but no one kept any records or pictures,
 that we know of, back then.

  She has read newspaper clippings
 about the people
 surrounded by my walls 
but only a very little 
about me, personally.

 That is why 
this blog she writes 
is so important to her. 
 Now, there will be a record
 of the memories
 that have been made here.

A few pretties 
get unpacked and put in their place of honor,
 only to be removed again
 as shining, dusting and ironing 
need to take place 
before they are 
really presentable.

The Mistress 
just can't seem to keep her head about her 
at this time of year.

 I know she has planned it all out,
 to the last detail,
 since the tree was taken down last year, 
but when it comes time,
 things just don't look like she thought,
 so she is off on another tangent.

  This time of year 
is the worst, however, 
and I think there is 
something about Christmas
 that is more important
 than any other 
decorating holiday...

...I can't fault her for that though, 
as I feel the same way.

 Always one to offer my best side,
 I know I can shine 
at Christmas 
if I'm allowed.

Right now,
 the Mistress is just trying to figure out
 what will go where 
when she finds some treasure 
that has been hidden away
 in the corners of my cupboards 
and when that search is exhausted,
 the 1-2-3-4, 
"Oh, I've lost count of the many boxes
 that come in from storage." 

 I find that I just can't help
 groaning a little 
as I feel like a small child,
 once again, 
being asked to wait for
 Christmas morning.

In order to give my Mistress her due, 
I think we will draw the curtains 
for the coming week
 so that wonderful and glorious things
 can happen here 
and then I can share with you all,
 that you really can teach
 an old dog new tricks
 put lipstick on a piggy.

  After all that,
 I promise,
 I will be ready to shine. 

 See you week after next.

...Respectfully, The Cottage...

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Tuesday, November 20, 2018


Over the river and through the woods
 to Grandmother's (and Grandfather's)
 house we go...

So goes the old holiday song 
and it happens to have 
special meaning for us this year 
because our kids are
 leaving the beach 
and coming to the woods 
for Thanksgiving.

As I have said in the past, 
this doesn't happen very often.

 With their jobs, 
they don't always get the same days off 
so it is hard for them to get away. 
 It is easier for us 
to go to them.
  But, this year,
 it all worked out
 so we can spend time together
 here at the Cottage.

Right up front, 
let me tell you that we are 
not a fancy family.

 We would rather go
 to a casual restaurant 
where we can wear jeans and tennies
 as opposed to a 
fancy, dress-up place. 
 Don't get me wrong,
 we love good food 
but would rather be comfortable 
while eating it.

 My big night out
would consist of
 a trip to Home Goods,
 followed by dinner at In-N-Out Burger,
 in the car, with my dog. 
 That is what makes me happy
 and I don't apologize for it.

I don't go so far as to say 
I love to cook every day
 but if it is a special dinner,
 shared with my family, 
then I really enjoy it.

  I will fix a turkey breast 
and all the good stuff 
that goes with it.

 Nothing fancy, 
just plain old good 
meat and potatoes.

Before the food though,
 my first thought is setting a pretty table.
  Here again, nothing really fancy.

  My "good" china 
is made up of sets picked up at 
flea markets and thrift shops.

 Here I will show you
 three possibilities I might use 
to set a pretty table...
of course, 
there will be flowers,
 candles and fancy glasses 
to complete it all.

This china is my finest. 
 It is Royal Chippendale (England) 
and I bought it 
from an antique shop 
when we first moved
 to the Cottage...

...this set of dishes
 came from a parking lot sale 
a few years back.

  It is Tepco (USA)
 which was made for, and used in,
 around the 40's and 50's. 
I can remember going to places 
where food was served on
 Tepco with a western theme... 

...this setting is bright and cheery. 
 It came from Home Goods
 and that says it all.

Now, after showing all of these,
 because all of the above are
 my "good" dishes, 
I don't put them in the dishwasher. 
 Because we don't have the privilege
 of visiting with the kids all that often,
 I don't want to spend time doing dishes,
 so here is the actual table setting
 I have decided upon. 
 It will mostly consist of
 everyday pieces.

Starting out with gold 
could tell a different story,
 but not this charger. 
 It is plastic and 
came from the dollar store...

...this charger knocks it all up a notch. 
 It is tin 
and I ordered eight of them 
from a catalog years ago.

 I love the lacy edge 
that peeks out from under 
the dinner plate...

These dishes 
were a give-away 
from the grocery store 
that Tami worked at 
about 30 years ago. 
 The rolled edges 
add a little extra 
to the setting...

...these napkins 
are from a large set
 I picked up at a flea market 
once upon a time. 
They top off the settings
 with a black and white checked ribbon
 that ties in with 
the chair back covers 
and the window valance. 
 Further embellishments consist of 
a dried autumn leaf 
and a stem of wheat.

A simple centerpiece
 sits in the middle
 and persimmons add a little color there
 and at each place setting.  
This will be removed 
during dinner
 as the narrow table can't hold it
 and food, as well.

I will fight for 
the candles to remain 
during dinner, however, 
as I am THAT fancy,
 but the rest of the gang
 says they like to see 
what they are eating!

I ordered some blue velvet 
along with some red velvet
 that I don't have yet.  
You will see later 
the plans I have for them.

We wish you all 
a very happy and blessed Thanksgiving
 and hope you enjoy the time spent
 with your families and friends...

...and then
 I will be back with 
the beginning of this year's 
love affair with


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