Thursday, December 27, 2012


The Christmas season is almost over for another year. 
I'm afraid that all of my Christmas decorations and trees are still up, which is unusual for me.  I'm always ready to take them down the day after Christmas, but haven't begun yet.  Hopefully tomorrow I'll begin the chore before they gather any more dust!
Our son is still here visiting, and the grand kids have been in and out; so I'm still in a semi-cooking mode.  I'm anxious to give the kitchen a break - it needs a good scrubbing to dispose of all of the cookie sprinkles and crumbs.
   Our son goes home tomorrow to prepare for another semester of teaching school, but the grand kids will be out of school for another week.  That means a trip to the city for our annual ice skating excursion, plus several more days of in and out of our house to raid the refrigerator and freezer.  That's a good thing as I don't need to eat any more of those cookies!
I do love this time of year when everything slows down for me giving me time to sew, clean, and organize.
Christmas was good; it's all good as I cherish each day that I'm given!

I seem to be blog-brain dead at the moment, so I'm taking the easy way out by reviewing my most viewed posts for 2012.  

#1 -- The acquisition of our industrial cart - a steal at $20.  View the post here.

#2 -- My first experience with making a penny rug, and now I'm hooked on wool applique.  I'm working on a new project, but it's labor intensive; so won't be finished for another month or so.  For the original post, click here.
#3 -- Finishing up a small renewal of our screened-in porch.  Check it out here.
 #4 -- Colorado Farmstyle Christmas - read about it here.
And #5 -- The renovation of this record cabinet - here.
Hopefully, I'll get my blogging mojo back soon, and will have something new for you to view.  

I just realized I need to do something about my Christmas header -- another project for tomorrow.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012


The decorating is done; the shopping is finished and wrapped; and now I'm in cooking mode.  Everything is leading to the reason we celebrate this glorious season - the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ.
I'm going to take some time off from blogging, so I can fully reflect on this GREATEST GIFT OF ALL!  May you all have a joyous Christmas week.

Below are some images from our collection of  antique Christmas postcards.  Hope you enjoy their sentiments and wonderful artwork.

Saturday, December 15, 2012


I debated about posting about our main Christmas tree this year as some of you have already heard its story.  The tree now basically looks the same year after year with just a couple of new ornaments added.  But, after five Christmases of blogging; I decided that the Christmas tree post has become part of the tradition.

This is how the tradition started -- our first tree in our small apartment in 1958.  We were poor newly-wed college students and paid a couple of dollars for the live tree plus we bought one red ball to paint the year on.  Those red puffs were some net I had, and we strung some popcorn as garland.  
This is what the tree has grown into today.
This is our 55th Christmas as a family -- consequently there are now 55 red balls on the tree, each with the year painted on.  Some of the years have run together in our minds, but the years of new babies, new houses, or memorable trips are refreshed memories as we hang the balls on the tree each year. 
It's seems that everything on the tree has a story -- part of the tradition!  This is one of the Barfy twins.  Yes, there are two of these elves -- one for each hand of a sick 2-year-old on a VERY rough airplane ride.  I'll spare you further details; but, the Barfy boys have been frolicking on our Christmas tree for 42 years now.
The popcorn garland has always been the domain of Bob, the kids, and the grand kids.  I'm the seamstress of the family, but I don't sew popcorn!  Some years we save the popcorn from the previous year by storing it in the freezer.  This year was time for all new popcorn.  Even the grand kids are getting too busy, and no one was around to help Bob this year.  He sat for three days stringing popcorn while watching the History channel!!!  
Bless him!!!
There are a lot of Hallmark ornaments on the tree.  Who would have thought when I bought the first of the series on Nostalgic Houses and Shops 28 years ago, that Hallmark would STILL be enticing me to add to the series each year.  So, O.K. Mr. Hall, enough, already -- can we stop the series now, so our complete set of houses and shops will be finished and worth a million dollars?  Then I can stop thinking about (and participating in) the commercialism of Christmas?
There are so many other ornaments with stories on the tree - handmade gifts from talented friends; reminders from trips; and memories from family.  
I must save some of those stories for a Christmas tree post next year.

Are you growing a tree of tradition at your house?

I'm linking to the following:
The Dedicated House for Make It Pretty Monday
Cedar Hill Ranch for Cowgirl Up Tuesday
Savvy Southern Style for Wow Us Wednesdays
Have a Daily Cup for Share Your Cup Thursday
Romantic Home for Show and Tell Friday

Wednesday, December 12, 2012


Like a lot of people, I became interested in vintage Christmas when I inherited ornaments from my parents and grandparents.       Then, I started picking them up at garage sales, etc.  None of them are particularly old or valuable --  the value is in the memories and tradition.
When Christmas comes around, I change out brown transfer ware for some red; and add some of my bottle-brush collection, tree toppers, and ornaments.
I'm partial to the bottle-brush trees that have the little red wooden bases - most of these belonged to my grandmother.

I always look for ornaments with the cardboard hangers, which date them to World War II when metal was scarce.

This tree is decorated with all glass-blown ornaments, some are new that we have purchased when traveling or have been gifts.  But, it also includes some of my parent's Shiny-Brites and some of Bob's family's glass ornaments.
 I'm particularly fond of the yards of tiny glass-beaded roping that was my Mother's.  They are so fragile, I'm surprised they have survived.
Still to come -- our big tree that is full of our family traditions.

 I'm linking to the following:
Have a Daily Cup for Vintage Christmas Decor on 12/13
Thrifty Decor Chick for Christmas Trees
Delightful Order for Delightfully Inspiring Thursday
Common Ground for Vintage Inspiration Friday
Boogie Board Cottage for Masterpiece Monday
Knick of Time for Knick of Time Tuesday
Vintage on a Dime for Welcome Home Wednesday

Saturday, December 8, 2012


I'm finished with the decorating for Christmas.  The trees are up and the pine cones and plaid are in place.

We don't have a fireplace; so, alas, no mantel.  This cupboard that hides away our living room TV is a good substitute.  

  On the sofa table, the dough bowl is filled with pine cones, walnuts, chestnuts, dried pomegranates, and some California acorns.  

In the next post, I'll show you my collections of vintage ornaments, tree toppers, and bottle brush trees -- stay tuned.

I will be linking up to the following blogs.  Please go by to check out all of the inspiration.
The Dedicated House for Make It Pretty Monday
Cozy Little House for Tweak It Tuesday
Fishtail Cottage for Natural Christmas Decor on Tues., 12/11
Vintage on a Dime for Welcome Home Wednesday
Common Ground for Vintage Inspiration Friday
Everyday Home for Better Late Than Never Blog Hop on Wed., 12/12

Wednesday, December 5, 2012


For a lot of years, my friends from our Wednesday A.M. coffee group and I exchanged handmade gifts of our choice at Christmas.   We quit a few years ago as time and space became an issue, but we sure had fun during our heyday years.  I thought I would share a few of the Santas, etc. I have made in years past to give.

'Elf on a Shelf' year!  So much fun collecting and stringing all of those buttons for his arms and legs.
 And, then one year I went crazy making these snowmen with their sweaters made from socks.  I couldn't stop buying cute socks - I think I made about twenty snowmen that year.
 The year of 9/11 - a patriotic Santa was in order with his red, white, and blue patchwork coat and flag.
 Then, there was the year that I thought how hard can 10 Santas in his bag be to make.  Well, that totaled 100 of those little yo-yos that make up his tree, etc.  Oh, my!
 Here is one from the early 1980s - primitive Christmases were all the style.
 My friend, Jan, and I teamed up on this Santa.  She made the heads and bodies; and I did all the clothes.  I don't remember how many of these we made, but it was a bunch.  It seemed like I made hundreds of those mittens with their tiny thumbs.
It sure was fun each year thinking up different projects.  Sometime, I'll share some of the ones I received in the exchange - lots of talent in our group.  

I still try to do some handwork as a tuck-in gift for another friend.  Nothing too fancy this year!  I've been in the wool-applique mode for a couple of months, so I made a couple of wool ornaments.

I'm linking up to the following parties.  Please stop by these blogs for a plethora of inspiration.

Centsational Girl for Christmas Crafts on Thursday, 12/6
Cedar Hill Ranch for Handmade Christmas on Friday, 12/7
The Vintage Farmhouse for Creative Things Thursday
No Minimalist Here for Thursday Open House Party
Have a Daily Cup for Share Your Cup Thursday
The Charm of Home for Home Sweet Home Friday
Funky Junk Interiors for Saturday Nite Special
Cozy Little House for Tweak It Tuesday

Sunday, December 2, 2012


My farm roots kicked in today while decorating our Hoosier cabinet for Christmas -- crocks and stoneware mixing bowls from the farm.

 The three rolling pins in my Grandmother's milk pail belonged to my two grandmothers and a great-aunt.  The rolling pin on the shelf was my mother's.

 The tin spice containers date from the 1930s - 1950s.
 A plaid recipe box and child's school Thermos.

 A Santa in a plaid coat!
Memories from life on the farm.  Well, I didn't actually see a Santa with a plaid coat  -- well, maybe I did -- my Dad had a red and black checked wool jacket.  Who knows?

I'm linking to the following:
Old Time Farmhouse for Farmstyle Christmas Decor, Monday 12/3
Have a Daily Cup for Vintage Christmas Decor, Thursday 12/13
A Stroll Thru Life for Table Top Tuesday
Knick of Time Interiors for Knick of Time Tuesday
Vintage on a Dime for Welcome Home Wednesday
The Vintage Farmhouse for Creative Things Thursday
Common Ground for Vintage Inspiration Friday
The Charm of Home for Home Sweet Home Friday