Dec 21, 2009

Holiday cheer and a Sparkling New Year...

Warm Holiday wishes to you and yours.
I am going to step away from blogging for the holidays.
I have presents to finish, candies to make, cleaning to do...
I need to be present in all the simple loveliness that surrounds my family in these festive times.
Blessings to you all.
I'll see you sometime before or after the new year begins!

In your home, peace.
In your heart, peace.
On earth, peace.

Dec 20, 2009

Gratitude Mondays...

What I am loving right now.....

~Christmas Trees at Night....

~Ornaments with History....

~Winter Ballets...  more on that soon...

I love that we heard a heart beat!
I love that I am 12 weeks, with 28ish weeks to go!
I love that we now have our first yard decoration, and it was a gift!
I love that Matt braved the ladder to put christmas lights up on our house 3 and a half times!
I love peanut brittle and christmas cookies!
I love that all my wrapping is done!
I love christmas cards!
I love walking out into our backyard to get a salad together!
I love that at the end of the day, no matter the day...

There is peace. 
Here's to wishing all of us a week of holiday cheer, and peace!

Dec 17, 2009

The Winter Solstice

In my family we will spend today making bird feeders from pine cones, peanut butter, and seeds.
This Sunday we will celebrate the Solstice by visiting wild lands, and leave our gift.

Blessings on your Winter Solstice.
The first day of winter.
The return of light.

Dec 16, 2009

Holiday baking season, Season after season...

Its our time of year for baking loads and loads of cookies, brittle, toffees, and cakes.  A delicious time of year.  A tricky time of year, if your goal is to Not gain elevendy billion pounds this pregnancy...  A time of year for more tradition.  I love watching my babies cook with their grandmothers.  I am so grateful that we have these wonderful women to share in my children's lives.  I wish I could have taken more pictures.









Here's to all of us enjoying the sweet flavors of this precious season, and taking the time to savor the memories that they create!

Dec 15, 2009

Its all in the journey..

This years trip to get a christmas tree with filled with the unexpected.  An unexpected bout of gastroenteritis in our family kept us closer to home.  Unexpectedly we had the opportunity to visit a different local family owned nursery than our usual farm.
I wasn't sure what we'd find at Whitfill Nursery...
I sure didn't expect to love it!

I was so happily and unexpectedly surprised to find free roaming ducks...

Chickens, chicks, kittens (with collars), even puppies on leashes.

Old rusty barrels of fire, and a good 'ol John Deer!

 Finding a place close to home (10 minutes), with candy canes, and cocoa, with the comforts of a farm, that is local, and family run... 
Its like finding the a great rock, or seashell.
The feeling of unearthing a treasure.
Possibly the begging of a new tradition..
That's the kind of special that I look for during the holidays.
We'll be back to this place, maybe for a fruit tree, and hopefully for next years christmas tree.
Even with all my planning, I know you never really know what to expect.
Its not the destination, it the whole experience.
Life is all about the journey.

Dec 14, 2009

Welcome to the world!

Just after 7 am eastern you were born!
my little sister's fourth baby
a day past 'due dates'
a two hour labor
a water birth
a screamer
a sleeper
a nurser
 8lbs 1oz

I am looking forward to hearing your name!

and I can't wait to meet you!!!

Dec 13, 2009

Gratitude Mondays....

What I am grateful for right now....

~11 weeks, and 29ish to go...  (now the size of a fig!)

~I might have the gifts out in the mail on time!  Maybe.  I hope so.  Here is a hint....
If you know what this is, or at least what step of the process of what it could be... Don't tell!

~We have a christmas tree.... it may be the largest we've ever gotten...

~Matt got our lights back on our house!  Cyrus can be a horse for hours at a time (20 minutes feels like hours)  and Ava's tender heart takes my breath away.  I am so grateful for them.

Dec 10, 2009

A little more holiday cheer....

Ya know those moments around the holidays when you mentally go through your holiday crafting to do list, then you mentally tally they amount of days until the packages must be in the mail, then you realize that even though you have scaled way back on "hand made christmas" your days to projects ratio seems impossible?  Then you start looking at your list and thinking things like... "my sisters' husbands don't really care if they get anything from me, I can scratch them off..."   or  "those first ones I made as a trial run aren't really that ugly.  I bet the younger boys might even like those color combinations..."   Don't you just love those holiday moments?  I know I am not the only one out there that goes through this.  Every year.  No matter how prepared I am.  Like a crazy laboratory mouse repeatedly shocking my nose year after year.   For the sake of keeping myself off the computer at this late hour and back to creating gifts like an assembly line worker...  Here is more of my holiday home!  Enjoy!

My table top faux tree.  I use it to pacify myself while I wait until I can put up a huge fresh tree.  My goal is to have it soo full of vintage ornaments that you can't tell that it only cost $9 eight years ago! 

The place that we like to get our tree has the trimmings laying round.  I think they are so pretty. 

This is just a little candle holder that I find ridiculously cute.  That's all. 

One of the many carousals that my daughter has in her growing collection 

One of a set of two candle holders.  They, like a large percent of my christmas collection belonged to my mother.  The trees remind me of home, in Washington. 

Some see a tree ornament, I see an opportunity to group more santas! 

Seriously hands down one of my favorite santas.  Made by an artist in Temecula, CA that I found in a little shop there.  Man oh man I love this strange little santa head... 

A craft that Ava and I worked on a few years ago.  The blue glitter glue was rancid.  That is a smell you just can not forget.

Back to the grind...

Have a great weekend every one!  Hopefully by Monday I will be mostly done.....  partly?
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Dec 9, 2009

Santa Santa Santa....

I love Santas.  Unusual Santas are my favorites.   As I have had one of those "oh so tired, oh so long, pregnant, don't want to think" kind of days lets take a look at a few of my Santas. Shall we get started?

These two boys are brothers.  I have had them for about 16ish years.  They have the perfect mix of creepy and classic.  Love them.  (if you look carefully in the blurry background you can see my messy living room on decorating day...)

He reminds me of a Nordic fisherman...

This boy is so bright I think he's a Seattle or San Fransisco kind of Santa...

This guy reminds me of middle American craft shows.  Never been to one, but thats what I think of...

This guy is just large and simple....

 This is one of my few fabric Santas.  I bought him when I worked my first job.  He has a face in there, but I like him much more when you can't see it....

This boy is small but charming...

This guy is old school, but faux old.  Maybe 10 years.  He does have moving parts, so he's top on my list...

This is my newest addition.  I think he would be happiest hiding in a plant.  Maybe next year.  I am not 100% sure of his personal history.  He was passed to me through several hands...

Thanks for taking a look at my silly Santa collection with me today!  I have a few more stashed here and there around my house, but these are the ones I already had photos of.  (read: very little work involved with making this post)  I am hoping my collection will continue to slowly grow.  I have my eye out for vintage, quirky and handmade.

 Have a fantastic Thursday everyone! 

Dec 8, 2009

Rainy Day

We had a lovely rainy day here in the valley of the sun this week.  We headed outside to enjoy the cool winter showers, cats and all...


We enjoyed the light rain with dancing, digging, raining, and pouncing....   Later this night the light showers turned to gales...  Blowing over trees, knocking out the power, and tearing our christmas lights off our house... Also giving Matt and I some nice impromptu quiet time to talk surrounded in candle light.  Gotta love a winters storm.

Here's to all of us finding a cozy way to weather the storms!

A Trip to Santa

My brief disclaimer...
My children have gone to visit Santa every year.  This is not a choice I have made lightly.  I struggle with two inner arguments over the virtues of propagating the idea of Santa.  To save you from the many details of my years long inner debate, I will just get to my end decision.  Santa is part of the culture.  I create an environment in our home where fantasy is not only allowed, rather we seek it out, explore and appreciate it.   There is magic in youth.  I never stress any myths of Santa, I simply follow their lead.  My house is already covered in Santa this time of year, as I have a slight obsession with unusual Santas,  And lastly (for the sake of time)  I don't want to be 'Miracle on 34th Street Mom'.

Now that we've got that out of the way... I wanted the trip itself to be special.  For some families a trip to the mall is steeped in tradition, and that is lovely.  I personally loath malls, all malls.   Luckily I found a solution last year, one that I am so so so happy with.  The Rosson House.  A local Victorian Era museum that offers Cookies and Cocoa with Santa.  A few hours outside with rose gardens, train rides, cocoa, cookie decorating, ornament making, and of course Santa!


~Making Wrapping paper....

~a discussion with the Big Guy himself...

~decorating cookies...

~train rides...

~making push pin tin ornaments, and did I mention the ice cream?...



~rose gardens...

We had a beautiful time.  It was just what my little family needed after a long week of stresses, and worries.  Ice cream, train rides, cocoa, cookies, and a visit with a mythical figure all in a beautiful setting.  What more could I ask for?  I can tell you that Ava asked for a 'big bike' (check. One big girl bike coming up), and Cyrus asked for 'big ones'.  (umm.  Its the same thing he was thankful for this year.  I guess we are going with a fire truck...?) 

A special addition to this years holidays... Ava's dress was passed on by my mother who wore it when she was 6, in 1958.  I Love it!!!

(Oh, and they also have an antique store, and a table with estate sale finds that honestly, for me, makes the trip worth it even if they didn't have all the other good stuff)  shhhhhh!

About Me

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East Bay, California, United States
I am a thirty something mother of three. Hoping to raise my little ones to love the the slower things in life.