Saturday, January 31, 2015

simply white

Why do winter and white seem to flow together? It might be the thought of snow 
(only a thought here this winter), or the starkness and sort of "cleanness" of white,
 related to a new year, cleaning out, a fresh start. 
Once Christmas was cleaned off the mantle I hung up a much loved photo 
of my mother's family, and thought "white." Easy to accomplish a white mantle 
with my love/collection of pitchers, especially white ones. My eye is so pleased to
 look upon pretty shapes in all sizes. I actually filled the mantle all the way 
across with a full line-up but it was voted down by the 
Gardener as "w-a-y" too much. I trust his good eye for decor.
 I married a renaissance man.
 Have you heard that expression?

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

making do

One of the biggest things I learned living in Africa was how to "make do."
Yes there are all kinds of "outside the box" ways of doing things.
(I won't share all I could do with the same bucket of water.)
It was actually fun, using my creativity, as well as learning from
my African friends who lived so graciously, and often with so little.

When our toaster oven "bit the dust" last week I wondered if we should replace it. 
Hadn't I toasted with a frying pan before?
 I started researching a new toaster or toaster oven but nothing affordable looked satisfactory.
Since we actually don't make toast that often, would it be worth it?

So the other morning we shared a bagel, perfectly toasted in the frying pan.
I even added just a tad of coconut oil to sweeten the deal make it a smidge healthier.

We concluded that for now we'll "make do" and skip a new appliance, 
simplifying our lives in one small way.

"Life is not always a matter of holding good cards, but sometimes, playing a poor hand well."
Jack London

Sunday, January 25, 2015


It's hard for me to leave soup alone. Today when we came home from church I had no meal planned
so I found a can of corn chowder and started to heat it on the stove. First of all I added
a package of salmon. Then I dug around in the frig to see what else I could find.
And I added: several dollops of sour cream (at the end) and cottage cheese, some grated
cheddar cheese, 1/2 can left over black beans, left-over broccoli chopped, white wine,
and a couple of drops of oil seasoned with basil and another with hot pepper. It was hearty and so,
so good. But the Gardener commented that the one problem with such a
 soup is I never make it quite the same again. That's right, it all depends on the frig.
I'm enjoying the speciality oils from TJ that our kids gave me for Christmas. Mmmm.

Joining with Judith for Monday Mosaics.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

dish deal

So many people mentioned my dishes in my recent afternoon tea post,
I decided to do a "photo shoot" with them.
I don't think I'll ever tire of these dishes. I've probably had them eight years.
 I found them at a discount store so am surprised at the delicate detail in the flowers.
I haven't seen them since so am thrilled at my find. And I have a lot of them.
The set came with small plate/saucer, cup, salad plate, bowl and plate.
I love the way they complement other odd dishes I have--both white, and blue and white.
They keep me smiling!

Sunday, January 18, 2015

winter afternoon tea

 An impromptu gathering of friends for tea (it only took 8 emails) seemed so much nicer at one of our homes than a coffee shop.The grayness of a cold winter day allowed the candles to shine. A wrinkled tablecloth was not so noticeable as we focused on our teacups by candlelight. Individual teapots kept me from popping up to refill a big teapot and we each choose our blend of tea.
We endulged in blueberry muffins and little chocolates, 
while we caught up on our lives since the holidays.
Sweets for the palate and
sweet, nourishing conversation.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

do you make lists?

When the grandees were over one day in December I started a list
of things we might like to do. (Not so) Little One picked up the
white board immediately and added to the list, including a couple of things
that would not be on mine. She then grabbed it up as we went from
one thing to the next, being sure to check off each completed activity. 

Here's the list: read, color, snack, watch TV (not), cook dinner (did not get to that),
eat candy canes (not), puzzles, tea party, listen to music, rings (figure out a game
to play with canning jar rings).

She's about all things school now, but I think her mom is also a list maker.
I got this idea from a friend who arrived at her granddaughter's house 
and was met with a white board list of things her granddaughter 
was hoping to do during Grandma's visit. I loved the idea. 
Bev said her daughter in law is an avid list maker. 
I thought we'd try to take a picture.
Little Brother has a sense of humor!

Sunday, January 11, 2015

faded roses

My thoughts go frequently to my mother these days as this was the time,
two years ago, that she was ill and slowly saying good-bye to us.
I was with her every day.
And when I see faded pink roses I always think of her. 
She loved a delicate shade of pink. These helped us celebrate her 90th birthday. 
I'm so grateful for memories!

Friday, January 09, 2015

A Tale of Two Sweaters

Both sweaters were worn in high school: the red by a father, the pink by a daughter.  The pink was my first knitting experience; we could say the "sweater I learned on" and it was not the best fitting sweater. But I was pleased with my neat stitches, and not one was dropped (lost.) I delighted in wearing my dad's sweater especially on winter youth group retreats. It was perfect for the frigid temperatures as we tobogganed and skated. Then I moved on to other things I guess, and both sweaters went into hiding (i.e. storage). Each year when I brought out winter things and packed up summer clothes I'd get out the sweaters and have a look at them, wondering why I was keeping them. You know the drill. "Maybe a little longer; someone might want them." Especially that amazing 80-year-old red wool turtleneck.

I won't say how many years this little exercise has taken place, but this year I made the "rash" decision to take them off to where someone else might use them. I loaded them in the car and snapped a picture. I tried not to be sentimental about them. Especially the red sweater. I later told my sister what I'd done. "So that's where Dad's sweater went. I used to wear it too, and always wondered where it ended up." An immediate lurch in my stomach.

Had I made a mistake? The bane of a sentimentalist trying to purge. Maybe it never feels 100% right. 

Wednesday, January 07, 2015

little lessons

Cold weather is hitting us hard today. I can tell immediately by my hands what the weather is. Dryness and cracks around my thumbs seem to come instantly. And our southern homes don't seem insulated as well as up the ones up north, so drafts are a plenty and in the evening especially it seems so chilly.

So I've learned a few things over the years that help. First the rubber gloves. I have an aversion to the big yellow ones because if I'm doing dishes and something sharp pricks a hole in one, it's a goner. And then there's the water getting inside a glove--I can't abide that. So I started using medical gloves--much cheaper and tighter and I can reuse them for dishes for quite a long time. I even wear them when I'm cleaning or using my hands with other projects--and don't feel badly tossing them. The snugness even keeps my hands damp, which helps to keep them from drying out.

Then I wear a warm scarf around my neck, especially in the evenings when I'm sitting around. What an amazing difference it makes. Pictured is one of my favorite indoor scarfs--soft and warm and not itchy. :-)

The last little lesson I learned from a blog last year. I use liquid bandaid on cracks on my fingers but they can still be painful. I learned that chapstick applied to the crack will seal it from the air hurting it. Wow, what relief!

Seems that cold weather is hitting us in many areas of the country today. Stay warm!

Sunday, January 04, 2015

pocket pants

Pockets are handy, but especially for little boys, don't you think?
Our second son, at a certain age was adamant that his pants had pockets,
each and every day.
(He also wore a cap, from rising to bedtime.)
When I saw this little Hummel in my sister's china cabinet,
I thought about "pocket pants," as we called them.
There have been times when our grandson has come for the day
and I request that he wear pocket pants.
We never know what little treasure might need to 
be transported home in a pocket.

"… the hope of the future with a frog in his pocket …"
(author unknown)

Thursday, January 01, 2015

not alone

C. S. Lewis wrote, "We read to know we are not alone."
I believe this is true for blogs. As we read we find much in common. 
It brings comfort, doesn't it, to know someone else is experiencing or has experienced
the same as us? When I consider stopping my blog, this thought 
and blog friendships are what keep me going.
I always enjoy sharing ideas and life as we communicate with each other.
Wishing you all many joys in 2015.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...