Monday, December 23, 2013

Peace and Joy

Whether you are home or away, near or far, in a crowd or alone, may the peace and joy of Christmas be with you as you look for the little miracles in your lives. I am most grateful for all of you and wish for you the blessings of this grace-filled season. 

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

It's not about the Money

As I am sure I have mentioned before, I am a member of "The Mending Club",started by Sandy, and made up of many of us who met through The Pink Cupboard, Sandy's beautiful shop of vintage and carefully selected new goodies, which used to be housed in The Prairie Street Brewery. Many of us have been together since then and a few of us have opened shops. The Mending Club exists to mend hearts, and lives, and friendships.

Last night was our annual one dollar, yes, that is $1.00 gift exchange and dinner party, this time at the beautiful log home of Terri, one of our most recent members.


I have to share the dollar gifts, purchased or created by our little group.  Among them are decor items like this stuffed felt snowman hanger and the glittered, stuffed embellished mitten, or the beautiful fresh greens and touch of glitz arrangement in a lovely detailed vase, plus mini silvery acorns used to surround the bleached, sparkly bottle brush tree with painstakingly, carefully created mini banner Christmas greeting. 

There are also the antique and collectible items such as this old tin film canister containing an actual film strip. Notice the label on the tin, Christmas Joys. How appropriate and special is that!

Then there are the kitchen items, from recipes, to cookie cutters and cookie mix to the mini cheese grater, to a pot and pan scraper (apparently necessary with said recipe) some with beautiful cards, or hand made tags, or creative packaging, all for $1.00, not including valuable time, of course.


Finally, there are the personal goodies from hand made pins, to everyday but essential emory boards (decorated of course), to a detailed felt mini-shoulder bag. Are you amazed? I always am. Let's hear it for the Mending Club and the joyful and creative spirit it embodies!

In conclusion, I wish a Merry Christmas to all, with a reminder to count the many blessings in our lives, one of the most important of which, is friendship.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Just Barely Making Do

We have always cut down a tree, but this year, it is out of the question because of John's recent open heart surgery. So I broke down and popped into the Salvation Army after our monthly "class of '62" breakfast, and there, hiding behind some stuff, was this poor little tree, not pre-lit but strung with lights. 

One string had a bulb missing.  I didn't have much hope that the lights would work.
I put the tree in the back of the van.  It is only 3-4 ft tall, but it was pretty heavy.
When I dragged it through the back door, I wasn't expecting a very warm reception, because John had not wanted a table top tree.  His feelings were better no tree than having no real tree, and certainly not a table top tree. Good thing for him, he did add that he was sure I could make it beautiful.

Lo and behold, the lights did work and I didn't have to add lights to our mini tree.  I replaced random white bulbs with color ones since John has to have some color. I describe it as colored jewels among diamonds. 
simple round ornament with band

I really didn't want to go up to the attic in this cold and bring down the ornament boxes when I needed so few ornaments. I did have a few vintage ornaments I had picked up at an estate sale, so decided to use just those. 
A really worn glass bell

glass grape cluster

Santa in fiber oval with flower and large tear drop

And, then I wrapped the stand in a bit of a skirt with a bell on it, to which I added another old bell and a small train engine.  Does it suggest The Polar Express to you?  It does to me.

Vintage tin Ohio Art tea cup
tree on top of tea table

The tree itself is sitting on the grandchildrens' little tea table, so I thought it only appropriate that there be some Ohio Art tin tea cups hanging on the tree. 

We did top it with our traditional cross.

But, all in all, there are not many more of our own traditions on this tree. However, for this year, it is our tree, and it does warm up a little corner of our living room. (John says it looks nice - for a nursing home)