Sunday, November 28, 2010

Entry Hall ~ The Woodland Tree

One of the fun things about decorating for Christmas is combining all of your decorations in new ways. Everything you see here I already had but I have never put them together in this way before. Thus I present to you...drum roll!...the Woodland Tree

This picture of Santa is a print from a cover of Coutry Living, they offered them for sale one year and I couldn't pass it up. The framing wasn't cheap but it was worth every penny. He usually goes in my kitchen, but not this year. I kind of figure that Santa and deer go together.....hummmm, I wonder why.

The little birds used to go outside on a tree on the front porch, but this year I decided to bring them in where it was warm and cozy!

I bought these Fritz and Floyd deer at Marshalls several years apart, first the standing deer, then a couple of years later they had the kneeling deer, you can imagine how thrilled I was to complete the pair; I think they are so elegant. I usually put them on the dining room table, but I really like them in this setting.

 The package - well there needs to be a package under every Christmas tree.

Here it is all together, I hope you like it. C'est joli, n'est-ce pas.

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Friday, November 26, 2010

I Did It! ~ A technology Breakthrough

Ever since starting my blog I have wanted to be able to make a header in a collage format, and this month for my Christmas postings I was finally able to accomplish making one that I was satisfied with, up to now they have only been what I would call messy disasters. My Daughter at, made an absolutely beautiful new header using Picnik and in the future, depending on what I want to do, I will definitely be using their program, but I made the header you see here with Picasa; their program allowed me to have a larger center picture and two smaller side pictures. These are both easy to use...especially Picnik...Picasa takes a little more work. You can find the tutorial I used for Picasa at: and the Picnik tutorial at: Now watch out because I just might become a little header obsessed!

A side note - I wanted a wider header and my new width is 1000, but by doing this I messed up some of my older postings and and blogger won't let me edit out of it, I somehow also lost a post, Folded Elegance  I know that for the future I want the wider header so I guess it is the price to pay. C'est la Vie

Friday, November 19, 2010

Let the Fun Begin!

Oh my gosh...this is downright scary! What could possible be in this spooky place? Dare I venture down there to find out...well okay, maybe I will. Call someone to come and get me if I don't come back.

Aha! A treasure trove of decorations and most of them are for Christmas. Now lets see just what do we have here...I guess I will have to haul it all up and see.

Wow this is great and there's even more down there. Let the fun begin!

I am fortunate to have a small basement in my house, very rare in Southern California, and as you see it is not very pretty, but a perfect place to store most of my holiday decorations. Although the boxes are all labeled, in order to get it all better organized I am thinking about getting different colored containers for the different holidays. How, and where, do you store your holiday decorations...any good ideas? Please leave a comment and let us know.

Happy Decorating!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Un Petit Quelque Chose ~ Nasturtiums

This is the time of year in Southern California to plant Nasturtiums, Tropaeolum majus...actually is is a little late but they are very forgiving and I think they will do fine.

I fell under the enchantment of Nasturtiums as a little girl when I was visiting my Grandmother in Olympia, Washington. One morning while sitting on the porch steps, surrounded by what seemed like an ocean of yellow and orange flowers, a little green garter snake crawled under my legs. I was charmed, both by the snake, and the flowers with their vibrant, pretty blooms and peppery scent. It was not until many years later, and after I became interested in gardening, that I discovered that the flowers I remembered so vividly were Nasturtiums.

Nastursiums have now been bred to come in many colors, some even have variegated foliage. My favorites are the pale yellow ones, but this year along with my favorites, I am trying one called Alaska, it has speckled foliage and the flowers are in mixed colors.

Lastly I leave you with this charming image. I have never found a faerie in my garden but you never know... maybe some day I will find one hiding amongst the Nasturtiums...if so I will let you know.

This post has been linked to Out Door Wednesday at: and

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Gobble Gobble ~ Shelf

It all started with this gorgeous wreath, it was on sale at JoAnne's  for 70% off...they considered it a Halloween decoration, to me it shouts, Thanksgiving.

 I already had the pumpkins...

 and the fruit...

and when I was at Marshall's one day this wonderful turkey just flew into my cart looking for a home. Could you have told him no?

So here they are all together in the morning sun in my kitchen window ready to wish you a wonderful Thanksgiving Day.

...Gobble, gobble

I hope you enjoyed this post, if so please leave me a comment.

This post was linked to: , and

Friday, November 12, 2010

Decoupage ~ Door Drama

In the family room (aka, library/media room) that is currently undergoing renovation, I have one of these doors flanking each side of the cabinet that is going to house all of the electronics and the new television. They are nice, old solid wood doors with original glass knobs, but I kept looking at them thinking that this might be the opportunity to do something a little more interesting and I have always loved painted french furniture, so...

...I made this pattern, taped it to the door and and traced around it for the design I wanted. I took off the pattern and painted the inside with a slightly darker tone of paint than the door. When that was dry I outlined the edges with a metallic gold stripe.

I had this fabric left over from the curtains in my front room, it was perfect for what I wanted. I carefully cut... and cut... and cut... until I had enough flowers and details to compose the design you see below.

I applied the fabric to the door with wallpaper paste being very careful to wipe off any excess with a damp towel. Then applied a light coat of glaze.  Voila! I think I like just the other door to go!

What do you this okay?


Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Le Déjeuner ~ Tomato and Goat Cheese Tart

My Sister is here visiting this week and she hasn't seen some of our cousins for a while so I thought I would invite them over for lunch. It was a perfect opportunity to try out this recipe for Tomato and Goat Cheese Tarts from the Barefoot contessa Back to Basics Cookbook. My daughter at:  made them and said they were excellent; because she is such a good cook I always take heed of the recipes she recommends. The tarts were indeed delicious and also meet one of my important criteria for entertaining: they can be prepared and assembled ahead and just popped into the oven before serving. Along with the tarts I served a mixed green salad with toasted walnuts, diced green apples and a walnut oil vinaigrette. And for dessert caramel brownies. I think it was all a success!

Bon Appetite!

You can find this yummy recipe at:

This post was linked to:

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Duel Duty Holiday Cabinet - Thanksgiving

You might remember the duel duty holiday cabinet I did in my kitchen for Halloween. I put it together with the idea that with some minor changes it could be adapted for Thanksgiving. Well, Voila! Here it is...

 I added some additional color with tissue paper in the background; turned the Jack-o-lantern around to make a pumpkin and moved out the black crows...

Then, a decorative plate, wishing you of course, a "Happy Thanksgiving".

And best of all this turkey. He is new this year, I found him at Marshall's for only $6.99. and I think he is adorable - I especially love his dangling feet ~ Too cute.

All so easy and fast; I am rather pleased with myself I must admit. I hope that you like it too.

This post was linked to: , and

Friday, November 5, 2010

Weekword Abundance ~ Sweet Peas

When I think of the word abundance Sweet Peas, Lathyrus odoratus come to mind, for their abundance of fragrance, bloom, visual beauty, and...

... it just so happens that this is the time to plant Sweet Peas in Southern California. Sweet Peas do not like hot weather, so here they are considered a cool season annual. The earlier they are planted the earlier the bloom and it is often said that by planting them now you will have blooms by Christmas. I am not usually so organized and don't get them planted quite this early, but this year the potager is cleaned up, ready for planting...and along with the winter vegetables, this is where my Sweet Peas go!

There are so many seeds to pick from but I chose early blooming, heavily scented, old fashion varieties. I can hardly wait to bring the first bouquet into the house ~ heavenly.

And as long as we are talking about Sweet Peas, some of you might remember this beautiful Sweet Pea pattern by Laura Ashley. I kept all of her catalogues and like with my old copies of Victoria (and the new) I go through them periodically for inspiration. This Climbing Sweet Pea wallpaper was always one of my favorites - so charming. Alas, this pattern is no longer available but the idea could be duplicated using another vertical patterned paper.

So, add a little abundance in your life and when the time is right in your garden...plant some Sweet Peas!

To see the other Weekword posts please go and visit Chris at: this post was also linked to:

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Got Turkey?

center picture: Norman Rockwell, "Bringing in the Turkey"

From my years as a primary teacher I give you the following...enjoy...
                                                                Turkey, Turkey

                                                     Turkey, turkey look at you,
                                                           please be careful what you do.

                                                    Thanksgiving Day is almost here,
                                                          we eat turkey every year.

                                                    So run and hide out in the woods,
                                                           and we'll eat pizza as we should!