Tablescapes, Home Decor, Thrifting, Cooking

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Dishes are always ready




As in most years Christmas will not be in our home this year and therefore I don’t have an actual tablescape to share today.  It is our tradition to have Christmas Eve in my mother’s home.  This is a tradition our daughters always remember and my mother even at 84 has requested we keep this tradition as long as she is able to host.  She is still going strong!

Today I will join in with Susan at Between Naps on the Porch to show my dishes I have displayed on my “Butler’s Pantry” counter.  All fall I have shared pictures of my brown transferware  ~~~  well SURPRISE!!  I have it in red too!  This pattern is called Vista by Johnson Brothers.




Surely sometime during the holidays people will be over for cookies or desserts or a casual meal.  I love my dishes too much to tuck them in a cupboard.


The sparkle of the silver pitcher and tray just feel so festive.



Crystal silverware holders have been in my hutch for years.  They are a great tool for keeping things tidy at a serving area.




These dishes were added to my collection this year.  They are also by Johnson Brothers.  I found four dinner plates and four salad plates at TJMaxx.  Wish I could find more but I do love mixing them with my Vista plates.



This little lighted ceramic Christmas tree has been part of our decor for years.  My mother gave it to us and now my girls have all said they would love to have one.  Someone from the Veteran’s Home painted these to sell.  I’m keeping my eye out for more to pick up for my girls.



Oh Thursday ***   the week before Christmas Eve Day.  I’m excited to see what you are sharing on your tables today!  More shopping to do today~~~

                  Enjoy this day God has given us!


Tuesday, December 15, 2009

A December to Remember

This has been a non traditional December for me but one I won’t soon forget. 


Two trips this month were carefully planned out and thoroughly enjoyed.  The first one I told you about earlier was a much anticipated trip to Asheville, N.C. with my daughter Angie.  We met up with some very nice people I have known for years through a message board.  We enjoyed a wonderful dinner on the grounds of The Biltmore and then toured the enormous and breathtaking home by candle light.




Unfortunately they don’t allow indoor photography, but let me just say if you ever have the chance to go  ~~ DO IT!  I’ve been before during springtime (beautiful), and it was extra special with all the lighted trees, candles and decorated mantles in December.  Oh my!



We came home through Chicago visiting another daughter Emily.  The morning we were leaving to come home we woke up to this:




We arrived back home just in time as we had a big snow storm the next day measuring a good 10” plus some impressive drifts! 


This was results of the mall parking lot being cleared off:




Four days later Mr. Brown Socks and I flew back to Chicago for his birthday.  With our middle daughter and her boyfriend we had a nice dinner in a quaint little neighborhood and then raced off to see Jersey Boys!


What a performance!!  Go see this too if you can!  The talent was more than impressive!!


So now I’m catching up trying to do a little decorating and finishing up shopping.


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I have decided I may not do Christmas cards this year and I’m okay with that.  I took advantage of some opportunities and made some memories with my sweet family and good friends.  Besides the most important event, the birth of Jesus, isn’t that what the holidays should be about?


Oh yes, it will be a December to remember….<sigh>


Thursday, December 10, 2009

And so we asked him…”what’s on your Christmas list?”

For those of you who read my blog you may have noticed that I refer to my darling husband as Mr. Brown Socks.  Until now I have never offered an explanation.


With Christmas just weeks away his title source comes to mind again. 


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A few years back many family members asked DH what was on his Christmas list.




Although he is very intelligent and has a variety of things that interest him he is indeed a very simple man.  He honestly would be content living on the land with a wood stove and his dog by his side.

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  BUT, if he wants to keep a wife, he must have a warm house too!  (oh, and maybe a few decorations!)  This one particular year every time someone asked him what he wanted for Christmas time and time again he would say “brown socks!”  Wanting little, he is indeed a hard man to buy for. 


Finally I had a thought.  I secretly told every family member to buy him a pair of brown socks to wrap for under the tree.  We open gifts one at a time, so each time around he would open up another pair of brown socks!  After about the fourth pair, he had a huge grin on his face as he was catching on that he was getting his wish!  Santa even put multiple packs of brown socks in his stocking!  He ended up with seventeen pairs of brown socks.  I think that was four years ago and he is still wearing some of them.  He hasn’t asked for socks since!  LOL!



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He did get some other gifts just so you know!



Mr Brown Socks


Oh, by the way Mr. Brown Socks,

Happy Birthday Honey!!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Christmas under Glass

Today I’m joining Marty at A Stroll Thru Life as she is having a Cloche Party!  Each time she sponsors this I tell myself I will participate the next time. 


I’ve had this house looking cloche for several years. Inside I make a little winter scenery with the store, a Santa, a miniature tree, this old pocket watch ornament and of course some snow.  On the out side I hung  red beaded tassel and the little rhinestone sign that says, “Believe”.

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I don’t feel like the pictures do it justice, but it is quite charming.  :)

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Next I pulled these pictures from my Christmas 2008 files.  We were visiting Emily’s condo in Chicago last December and I helped her decorate for a dinner party she was hosting.   As you can see she has lots of cloche’s in all different shapes and sizes.


They started off looking like this and then we got serious!

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The tall, slender cloche is sporting pretty red baubles of some sort.  The feather is a little ornament with a little glitz that is hard to see.  The little cloche next to it holds some old, old ornaments an elderly Russian lady gave to her.  They were special to Emily but she wasn’t sure what to do with them.  We loved them under glass!

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We were quite pleased with her mantle after we spent some time playing with all her pretties!

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Be sure to join Marty and the other participants with this fun party!  Thanks Marty!!

Well, I’m now back from my Biltmore trip and I see I did something wrong!  :(  My post that was to publish did not go.  I will add it very late.  Sorry Marty….

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Going on a Girls’ Trip

I know, I know ~~~  I should stay at home and decorate my house like all of you are doing.  Instead I have an opportunity to travel with my oldest daughter, Angie.  She is the mother of three little, precious boys, also known as my darling grandchildren and she is my travel companion for a much deserved getaway for her!




We are traveling to Asheville, North Carolina to The Biltmore house, America’s Largest Home. 


Not only are we going to visit this gorgeous, unbelievable house (my second visit, Angie’s first) we are also going to take a Candlelight Tour all decked out for Christmas.  I can hardly wait!




To make it even more fun, we are meeting up with some friends I met several years ago through Southern Living.  I have met all but one before and you couldn’t ask to spend time with nicer people.  :)


Biltmore at night



Just because it’s on the way, we will spend a day in Chicago, with daughter number two, Emily.  She lives there and we plan to shop with her since she has the day off.



So keep on decorating while I’m gone.  I’ll be anxious to see your homes when I return.  Just realize I may be a little delayed with my home decor for Christmas, but maybe I’ll check some names off my gift list while doing a little shopping!!


I do plan to join in with Marty at “A Stroll Thru Life” and her cloche party, so check back here on Friday.


Tootles for now!


Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Last Hurrah for Fall

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All along I have been thinking Mr. Brown Socks and I would be hosting Thanksgiving in our home as we normally do.  Lo and behold my sister in law offered to have it!  It didn’t take me long to say “why yes we’ll come.  Thank you very much!”

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On the heels of my silk Christmas show it is a treat to not have to cook for so many this year.  I might actually get a little Christmas decorating done this weekend too.

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Since I don’t have to set a Thanksgiving table this year, I hope you don’t mind if I share my table from last year when I was just a young blogger.  Oh, you may be surprised to learn that I do have other dishes besides my brown transferware!  They have really gotten good use this fall. :)


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Thank you so much Susan for encouraging us to set pretty tables and to offer such a fun way for us to share our dishes and accessories.  Between Naps on the Porch is SUCH an inspiration.  It is one of the things I am very thankful for on this Thanksgiving Eve.



Wishing all my blogging buddies the best Thanksgiving ever.  I hope you have much to be thankful for just as I do.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Welcome to my Christmas Show

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Come on in!  It’s warm and festive inside.  I hope you don’t mind placing these booties over your shoes.  This little favor you do for me keeps my husband happy.  :)  I’ve provided a little bench for you to sit on.

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Little Magnolia is my official greeter.  She slept through pretty much the whole show by the way.  She found a chair or pillow to perch on.  Everyone was amazed that she slept through so much commotion.  I told them she was “faux” like the plants! ;)

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~~There are lots of goodies for you to nibble on while you make your decisions ~~~

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The next part of my post is where I join in with Susan at Between Naps on the Porch.  I am playing along with Met Monday to show you some before and after shots of containers I painted.


Met Monday

This lantern is one I found at my local suppliers.  It was sort of a galvanized metal that had no “umpf” to it at all.  But!  I had a vision!

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I used Oil Rubbed Bronze paint by Krylon to turn this lantern into something that looks like it came from Pottery Barn.  Kammy at Little House in the Country turned my attention to this fabulous paint.  I am going through it like crazy!  It’s a great tool to change something blah into a work of beauty!!

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I’m not sure if this transformation is as clear, but this piece looked rather dated until the magic of krylon paint.

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It gave the metal a much richer look.

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This one was pure shiny white….

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Here’s a dated looking gold urn.  Really it wasn’t too bad, BUT

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Isn’t it gorgeous now???

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Lastly we have a VEDY, VEDY shiny jingle bells tray  ~~~~~

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that turned into a Winter Wonderland!   I also spritzed it with some textured snow paint to give it more depth.  As cute as it is, this piece did not sell.

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I still have this one too.  My mind keeps saying ~~~ Try opening an Etsy Shop!




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Join Susan for great makeovers and some really good ideas!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

So who wants a preview of the Christmas Show?


Some of you asked to see what I’m working on for my show, so here are a few pictures.


Talk about going green….it looks like I’m doing just that! 

Silk Thumb Christmas 001 Here’s something for the non traditionalist.



And a close up…                                                                 I do love this vibrant green for Christmas.  It’s such a rich look and also goes so prettily (yes, prettily!) with red as you will see on down this post.

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Here’s a sconce that would work well for the winter months after the Christmas decorations have all come down.  This would be great on a red wall or front door.  Yum!

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I won’t disappoint the traditionalist because I am one myself.  See how pretty the red and bright green work together?  There is some brown in this too.

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Another closeup

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Any poinsettia lovers?  I really would like to know if you like poinsettias!

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That’s it for a little preview.  Everything will look nicer once it’s set up for the show.  The set up process begins tomorrow.  I’m having to use every minute.  This really does take lots of time to turn my home into a store for three days!  Luckily my friend Susan always likes to come help!


I’ll be back with more pictures next time.  Do come again, won’t you? 


Tis Almost the Season!