Tuesday, December 27, 2011

~ Christmas Withdrawal ~

I think it is a very good sign that I had such a lovely Christmas ... I forgot to take any pictures of it. I seriously did not take a single picture of Christmas Eve or Christmas Day. But trust me ... some fun and delicious meals were eaten around my table on both of those occasions.

Including one raucous game of Phase 10, once the dishes were cleared. I did not win that game because I got a late start. I'm sticking with that story.

Even though the Christmas Cards also had a late start, I filled my sleigh to the brim with them. I love, love, love Christmas cards. I hope they keep coming this week. I harbor NO ill feelings towards anyone who sends them late. Zip.

One of the most favorite parts of my holiday weekend was the chance to get to know this little guy, who is way too cute for his own good. When he leaves, I will have to wean myself off of his presence. It won't be easy, trust me.

I was also worried about weaning myself off of Christmas music, but yesterday when I turned on the All Christmas Station I was delightfully surprised to see that they were way ahead of me. For all of yesterday they were playing a ratio of one holiday song to two non-holiday. I can't thank them enough. I really needed that extra bit of help.

Good bye to Christmas of 2011. You were absolutely fabulous.

Now ... I'm off to undecorate the tree.


Linking to The Girl Creative
Linking to Coastal Charm
Linking to Tuesday's Treasures

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Wednesday, December 21, 2011

~ All Shapes and Sizes ~

I don't consider myself a big cook and especially not a baker. However ... about 3 years ago I went to a class at church where I learned to make bread in one hour -- start to finish. No fooling. I learned it from these ladies at Pantry Secrets and have made (most) of my own bread ever since then. At that point I also started using some of the wheat I had canned in 1998 (yes, that's true) and got a wheat grinder. I stopped short of wearing Birkenstocks.

I never make the bread using all whole wheat and when I am feeling particularly naughty, I make it just with the white flour. Most of the time there is some odd mathematical equation involved. These loaves were about 1 part wheat to 3 parts white.

I wanted to make cinnamon bread as gifts for friends so I rolled out the dough and brushed it with butter and cinnamon/sugar.

I found that shaping the loaves was a tad harder this way than when it goes straight from Kitchenaid to loaf pan.

They only have to rise less than one half hour. Seriously.

Please try and get over the fact that one of the loaves has shaping ... issues. I too have shaping issues and so I am trying my hardest not to be critical of my mis-shapen loaf.

It still tastes really good ... trust me. And clearly I cannot give away the weird looking one so I guess it will be cinnamon toast for breakfast for me.

I am getting really excited for Christmas.
And you?

Linking to Open House Thursdays
Linking to Feathered Nest Fridays
Linking to Common Ground
Linking to Charm of Home

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Monday, December 19, 2011

~ Seeing Red ~

Although at one time red was a staple in my decorating scheme, it hasn't been for years. And in my new home, there are only touches of red in my studio ... what with all that fabric and all. However, at Christmas red sparkles as it adds a certain colorful detail announcing the season. From berries ...

... to some very special candles that were a Christmas gift my very first, married, Christmas and I cherish them.

Because I have a lot of blue, I love to see it contrast with those touches of red.

I exchanged the brown clock in my family room with this red one from my studio. Is it a clock ... or is it a piece of candy that can tell time? Hard to say.

More berries on a wreath that is hung on a wall, but will soon make it's way to the front door. The live wreath on my front door is now officially deader than a doornail. Shame.

I hung this sparkly ornament on the guestroom door so my grandson feels right at home.

I love the red trim around this pillow. I love that the pillow is blue but still hits you in the heart with that lovely red trim.

Last, but not least, I put a touch of red in the guest bathroom. Every so often I have some fun with my Bernina that embroiders.

I will miss the red when it is gone in a couple of weeks, but I'll squeeze out every ounce of scarlet goodness while I can.

I wish you a pre Christmas week that is full of joy and devoid of stress. That is the plan around here.

Linking to Tuesday's Treasures
Linking to Coastal Charm
Linking to Wow Us Wednesdays

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Friday, December 16, 2011

~ Seasonably Cute ~

Since moving to Orange County, I have been to Disneyland three times: Once in June when it was seasonably warm (in the 80's), once in October when it was unseasonably hot (mid 90's!) and ... yesterday, when we did our level best not to freeze off anything of importance. I have been to the Magic Kingdom ... dozens of times in my life.  I remember very few experiences (prior to this year) where it wasn't just California Perfect.

I was there yesterday with my OC daughter and her two adorable children. While my daughter took the boy (4) on Buzz Lightyear, Nanny decided to give the girl (Miss Sweet Pea, one, pictured here) a personal hat fashion show. This is what resulted ...

We don't care what the temperature is at Disneyland.

It is still always ... always ... The Happiest Place on Earth!

Linking to Charm of the Home

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Monday, December 12, 2011

~ Trees n' Shells ~

I have several small trees scattered around my house. This was one small advantage to moving someplace smaller. My decorations no longer fit in the rooms they used to fit in ... and now I get to enjoy them upstairs too. I love this little white feather tree on my dresser. I'm not gonna lie to you ... it's fake.

To make up for that I have some very real and wonderful pieces of nature on the dresser as well ... to sort of balance out the fake.

When I lived in Arizona, seashells represented vacation time. Now they represent ... home.

Another little tree in my bedroom with a dusting of fake snow. Today is rainy and cold and cozy. I'm thinking that snow seems very real indeed.

This guy in my guest room is actually a companion piece to one of my Santas. I hope they don't mind that I split them up this year.

This tree in the guest bathroom is also offset by a bowl full of shells.

I am loving all the turquoise that seems right at home with my Christmas decorations this year.

Mostly I am loving Christmas this year.

Linking to The Girl Creative
Linking to Coastal Charm
Linking to Holiday Housewalk
Linking to White Wednesday
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