A December rose, tea party's with the "Pink Haired Princess", starting the day with orange juice, Can't tell who is the real Santa, A candle in the window to guide loved ones home, All the joy of the season, Hero's finished, and finally...how the nativity sleep's....
No Christmas seems complete without the magic and faith of youth...
Holy Cow!! It's Christmas week, and I am finally, officially, ok, almost, done with gifts and only have a few left to deliver!
Now its time to stop and smell the artificial pine sent and whiff the cookie scented candles.
I had Christmas shopping and making done early a couple of years.
Not right in a row.
It was nice. no having to battle the crowds and the stores, no last minutes things to try to cram in. I had even planned well enough that I didn't even have to go to town for anything other than milk and eggs!
I didn't do that this year.
Instead I had zero ideas for gifts, when all the sudden, inspiration leaped, from the facebook pages of some of my friends and and tutorial blogs then, VIOLA! It was my pre-Christmas miracle!
So with four day's to get into the Holiday Spirit, I'm already starting my plotting and planning for next year's Christmas. In the hope that it will be one of those elusive "Christmas done early" years.
I know! I can put it on my News Year's list for next week!
It snowed last night while we were all asleep. When we woke up it was to a veritable Winter Wonderland...So after the easiest Holiday trip to the post officeI have ever been blessed with, we came home to relive one of the most traditional winter experiences of getting into our snow playing attire... As I was teaching Tiny Dancer how to make 'Snow Angel's' and watched her running around in the knee deep, to her, snow. I got to thinking...
When I was a kid the snow was always knee deep. I thought that the winter's must have been getting milder, when in reality I have just been getting taller. And apparently I'm really slow on realizing that bit of information...I will leave it at that. Back in the day, it seemed like it took forever to get bundled up to go out in the snow. Warm clothes were the starts, then came the snow suits, seems like no matter how old you got you still needed help to get into the things! The lucky older kids got to wear snow pants and their coats. Lucky duck's. Thing is, by the time we were into the suit, had our gloves, hat, scarf and rubber boot's on...we had to go to the bathroom! And yes. We really did look like this...
From google search
It was a grueling task, and this really was how it happened!but it was the price you paid to be able to go out and it was well worth it...even if we did only go out for half an hour and come back in crying because we were cold. It was as big a chore to get out of the stuff as it was into it! First you had to stand and let someone brush you off with the broom, so you wouldn't track all the snow in the house and get everything wet. Then you'd start to peel off at the door, sitting down to take boots off first. Then scoot a ways and take off a layer, scoot a ways and repeat the process until you were down to your clothes. Next came the job of laying your things out to dry. It often looked like the whole house was a carpet of wet and drying clothes. The best part was the warming up...a hot cup of chocolate and a lot of talking and laughing...then we'd beg to go out again. Sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn't...
My favorite red overshoes looked like this...
From google search
I'd tuck my pant legs into the tops of my sock's, then I'd put my shoes on, then the snowsuit and finally the fight was on to get the snow pants over the top of it all...
It was great!!!
From google search
We'd be bundled in so tight that the only part of us that air touched was our faces. Our mom's must have known it was time for us to come in when our cheek's and noses turned a certain shade of red.
Mom's and Dad's were not left out of needing warm and fashionable foot wear to help preserve their shoes, and keep their feet dry...
From google search
From google search
While I really liked my little red rubber boot's...I sure like my Uggs better...
May you stay warm on all your outings and may God bless.
Thanks to google search of 'vintage overshoes' for the last 5 pictures and to youtube for the "I can't put my arm's down" scene from "The Christmas Story".
Our Christmas tree's were always of the tall, skinny, scraggly sort, at least by today's standard's. But to us it was the most beautiful tree in the whole wide world! Daddy would bring it home. Then Grampa would help him build a wooden stand for it, with an anxious audience gathered around. Next it would be placed in front of the living room window, to 'warm up'. Momma would bring a white sheet and we would wrap it all the way around the stand, and wait for an hour or so before we could decorate it... That was sometimes a very long wait, so Mom would have us help make cookies while...Daddy would get down the well worn decoration box from the top of the closet, soon we kids would go through it with excited reverence. You'd think we had never seen the stuff before. Among the treasures were Gramma's old tiny glass ornament's that hung on Daddy's tree when he was a little boy...colored light's and silver tinsel...but my most favorite part was the 'ice cycles'! After Daddy would wrap the light's onto the tree, Mom would drape the tinsel on it how she wanted it, then she would help point out where an ornament needed to go, as the older kid's would decorate the top part of the tree, the little kid's the bottom part with the ornament's... Then she would pull out the long thin boxes that held the tiny little strips, of something that honestly looked like cut tinfoil to me, but a lot softer... Someone would hang it evenly over my left arm so I could drape it over the tree branch with my right hand...It was long, or I was short, because it almost touched the floor on both ends. And we would drape it gently, one strand at a time...That is if we were the kind of kids that hung thing's one at a time from a branch. But we weren't. We were the kind of kid's that would stand back from the tree, take one strand, and huck it at the tree. Not hard. But toss it up in the air, in the general direction of the tree, so it would 'fall like snow', not looking like we had measured how to put it on the tree. There were a lot of strands in those boxes. And I'm the youngest, the one with the least amount of patience...so my arm would get tired sticking up there...and pretty soon I'd be tossing up a couple strands at a time. Not much longer and I would be grabbing a hand full and tossing it a little more directly at the tree. Ok it would be a congealed clump, launched with the velocity of a short missle projectile from my grubby little mitt.
In spit of me the tree always looked pretty darn good, and someone always unclumped the ice cycle wad's that I thought had melted into the right places... At night when it got dark, we would turn off all the lights, turn on the tree light's and sprawl out on the floor, next to, but not directly under the tree, and watch the light's dancing on the ceiling, telling Christmas stories, or how we were going to stay up this year to see Santa... Us three younger kids, would sit on the back of the old horse hair chair, looking out the window's of the front door, to see the aluminum tree with the light that rotated to make the tree change color's, over at the King's house... We like that tree, but we loved ours... May you remember happy Christmas memories, and may God bless!
I am a person who likes candy that is easy, cheap, easy, and good. I got this recipe a long lot of years ago and it surprised me how easy, cheap and wonderful it is...I hope if you try it you will like it too.
Line a large jelly roll pan (10 1/2x15 1/2 inches) that has 1 inch sides, with foil. Turn up the edges of the foil to make a shallow pan. Spray it with Pam. Put a single layer of Saltine Crackers on top of the foil, cutting them to fit.
In a sauce pan; Melt 2 cubes of butter (1 Cup) 1 Cup brown sugar
Bring to a boil and biol for 3 minutes, stirring as needed. Pour over crackers and spread to cover. Bake at 375 degree's for 7 minutes. Remove and sprinkle immediately with milk chocolate chips. 1-12 ounce package chocolate chips. (2 cups). Let stand until they are melty, then spread the chocolate chips into an even layer over the top. Sprinkle with chopped nuts if you want. they cut into squares really well when still warm.
***************************************************** Without nuts With nuts
I hate it when 'the snuffles' come ta our house, its always uninvited. Coughs an colds, with scratchy throats, an yer voice sounds like yer Daddy's, if ya have a voice a-tall! Aches an fever's, an poor noses rubbed raw from way to much a blowin, an chappy lips from breathin though yer mouth! Ugghh!! I hate it when the snuffles come ta our house, its always uninvited.
I'm here ta tell ya, ain't none of that's the worst parts!
The worst parts is, ya can't go out. An ya just know that's when the best times is ta be had out there! While yer a layin at one end a the couch, an yer sister's at the tother, not tryin ta kick each other when Momma ain't even lookin!
Then ya take ta coughin, an yer chest hurt's just ta breath. That's when ya gets the 'treatment', an 'the croup tent', built round ya where ya lay. At first it ain't so bad when ya get slathered with the 'Vick's', yer neck gets rubbed an a warm sock wrapped around then safty pinned inta place. Next is yer back an chest, then ya stick yer flannel to it so's it don't move an wrinkle up. I hate it when the bottoms a yer feet gets slimmed an yer sock's stick like they been pasted on! A chairs brung close, a sheet draped over ever thang. Then Momma brings a hot pad an sets it on that chair. She lugs in a boilin pot o water an sets it there on top. While wipin her hands on her apron she warns ya, real firm like, "Now, don't you touch that! The water's hot enough to scald you good, so don't you touch that pot!" From the depths of her bulgin apron pocket, she produces that tub o 'Vick's', then scoops a couple big ol spoonfull's an drop's it in ta melt. "Now take nice big breath's and it will help clear out your breathing. It will also help to quiet your cough's and help you get some sleep."
Sure enough, a couple good deep breath's have you almost chewin on the smell! Then purty soon, yer head's a lollin back, yer eye's is closed an you can breath. Yer Momma's pretty smart. When ya wake up, ya feel mostly better. The kickin each other starts an the sock around yer neck is itchin an rolled up. "Momma?! We're feelin better can we get up now?" "Not yet." Then she clears away the hospital wing that was created in the living room. "Just take it easy for a while, so you don't irritate your cough's." She brings colorin book's an homework, picture book's an sewing card's...so ya sit there, an ya sit there, then all the sudden, a string a coughs busts out yer mouth. Momma comes ta check ya, an the whole mess starts a fresh! Yep. I hate it when the snuffles come to our house, its always uninvited.
May the snuffles miss ya and the good Lord Bless Ya!
starting with this Nativity I fell in like with...
I don't remember when it was that I gained my appreciation for homemade things. Must have been from the time I was a little one.
Momma made most everything, and what she didn't Daddy and Grampa did. The Aunt's all did the same.
A few store bought things would show up now and then, but it wasn't a regular thing, and it really wasn't the big treat that you might think.
The homemade gift holds a lot more than you at first may see when you look at it.
Sure it's purty, an might be useful, might be decorative, an frilly.
But do you see the time that was put into it? Do you see the laughter and fun that might have gone along with the makin? Do you see the love that's oozing from it?
Do you know how much you were thought about while it was being made?
So here's how a homemade gift goes;
First you think of the person you are going to give 'the gift' to. What it's for. Is it Birthday, Christmas, Thank you...or what-have-you.
Next, is one of the hardest parts; What to make.
Once you have that figured out, the battle is half won.
Then you set to work gathering the things you will need to make it. Thinking of the person's favorite color, how the person might use it, where the person might use it, and for how long...and ton's of other stuff.
Now comes the time part. Some things are made that take a lot of time, some times it's hours, or day's, could be month's...and in some cases year's, to finish. And the beauty of that is the fact that you are thinking of the person all the time you are making it!
Once you get your gift finished, you think of the person while you are wrapping it up, boxing it, putting it in a fancy gift bag and filling the top with three sheet's to much of tissue paper just for good measure...you got it...you are thinking about the person.
Then you give the gift, and hope that all the time and love you focused on the person while making the gift, is somehow able to wrap around the person and that every time they look at it they will think of you, and that you loved them enough to make something for them.
But it goes a little farther than that.
How? You might ask.
Well I'll tell you.
You also spend time thinking about the person who made the pattern that you are using. If it wasn't a pattern that you made. And the time they put into making it so that you could understand the how-to's of it all.
Homemade gifts are a circle of love...
Be it from a garden, a sewing room, a 'shop' in the back. From knitting needles to crochet hook's, or tin and some wood. Might be from leather, or 'something whipped up'. Maybe it's quilted or tied, pom-pomed, stitched, painted, or even starts with a key...With no one in mind more than you!
The story of our Christmas stockings, as I know it...
Most people have Christmas stockings that are red, or green, or red and green. Ours are turquoise, or Peacock blue.
Mom made them a really long time ago.
I asked here once, "Where did you get the idea for the Christmas stockings Mom?"
"From an old 'Woman's Day' or some such magazine, a long time ago. I saw a picture and changed it to be how I wanted them." she said.
"Really? What did you change?"
She thought a second or two then said, "Well the color. I didn't really like red. And the shape of the stocking, and I used Christmas card pictures cut from white felt. Sewed it on and thought, it should look a little bit 'sparkly' some how, so I added sequins and beads."
Every year they hung on the banister, between some big poinsettia spray's she had made, starting at the top and running to the bottom, from oldest to youngest. But Mom and Dad never had one.
Every year we would find an orange in the toe, and peanuts filling the rest.
Then I grew up and was the Mom. Honey didn't really have the same stocking every year, so I thought I could pass on a newish family tradition with them. I talked to one of my Sister's and she gave me a pattern she had used for her husbands stocking...it was a reindeer... I used it on Honey's, I cut and embroidered and sewed on lots of beads and sequins...
I made stockings for all three of our kids, and as they grew and had children, I have made stockings for them...no two are the same and I have gotten a little braver over the years and added tassel's and a braided Camel tail to one, and a yarn main to the last one I did...saving up for the purchase of pinking shears was a must, for the edges.
A rick rack hanger has been added over time.
I still use the same old ratty piece of brown paper bag that I made the pattern from my stocking onto, and keep all the fixin's in a shoe box sized plastic tub, with a few pieces of paper with poorly sketched pictures next to the names of who I have made them for, and have added a few ideas for others.
I love our turquoise Christmas stockings...and I smile every time I see them. I'm glad my Mom changed them to fit her personality, and I'm glad it has been a sort of tradition I can pass on to my family...
As you hang your stockings this year, I hope its with care and memories too.
Christmas just plain doesn't feel like Christmas without Johnny Mathis' singing a tune or more, this one is awesome "Winter Wonderland"
My daughter started liking this one when she was in band in Jr. High school and I think its a keeper. Plus I really like Celtic Women music..."Carol O f The Bell's"
Honey sings this one to me every year and it makes us laugh..."Snowflake"
My all time favorite, hands down, is"Away In A Manger" . I like it any time of year! As kids, my sister and I would sing these songs to each other"Silent Night"It was our Christmas gift to each other all through the month and three times on Christmas Eve...
Happy Holiday's and Merry Christmas, May God Bless!