Saturday, December 31, 2005

Perfect Companion, Coco

Our perfect companions never have fewer than four feet.

~ Anonymous ~

Countenance, Excellent as Cedars

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. . .his countenance is as Lebanon, excellent as the cedars.

Song of Songs 5:15

Prickly Pears

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Pick prickly pears with leather gloves on your hands. Take off spines. Rinse the fruit and place in kettle, adding enough water to cover. Boil until quite tender, squeeze through jelly bag or jelly press. To every 2 1/2 cups of juice add 1 (1 3/4 oz.) package powdered pectin and boil for a couple minutes. Then add 3 tablespoons lemon juice and 3 1/2 cups sugar. Stir often and boil hard for 5 minutes. Pour in jelly glass and seal with paraffin.

Linens and Lace

The days of yesteryear. A wardrobe was a valuable commodity for any woman. Each piece was held in high regard and was carefully stitched by hand or treadle machine. Quality workmanship was essential, as there were not discount stores to buy a quick replacement if stitching wore out. Each outfit was carefully planned and accessorized. And extras were the exception, not the rule. The result, some very well dressed women! The stories of Laura Ingalls Wilder and the emphasis given to sewing her wedding trousseau has always held much fascination for me!

Tea Rooms and Daisys

Tea rooms come in all shapes and sizes! I wonder, would this one fits the criteria established for a proper 'afternoon tea'? Watch out for stray cowboys!

Friday, December 30, 2005

Winter Tea with Auntie

Auntie and I have started a special tradition. Whenever I visit her in her home, we have an afternoon of 'tea' together. We are both passionate about 'afternoon tea', but with perspectives that differ somewhat. That doesn't matter, though, as both methods of 'tea' are memory makers. My interest in 'afternoon tea' focuses on the ettiquette and service of tea in the Americanized Victorian style. Three tiered trays containing sandwices, scones, and sweets; a pot of tea; and toppings of clotted cream, lemon curd, and jams. Auntie's teas are a result of the thirty years she lived in Europe and the many trips she took to England each summer. She creates an afternoon tea that is a lovely 'high tea'. Salads, a relish tray, cheesy scones, and boiled eggs create the main course of aunt's teas. She adds clotted cream, jams, apple butter, applesauce, tea breads, cookies, cream and sugar, and a pot of hot, English tea. Her favorite china, Beatrix Potter style, always graces the tabletop. And the best part of all --- hours of intimate conversation and catching up that occurs when we have the opportunity to visit every year or two. Thank you, Aunt, for a lovely afternoon tea! I enjoyed our afternoon tea together in the December sunshine on your front porch!

High Tea Table

Auntie's homemade goodies and hospitality create a 'high tea' that fills the tummy with refreshment and the heart with warm fuzzies!

Compote and Cream

Sparkling crystal and china add a festive feeling to a front porch tea.

Teapot in Sunshine

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The little brown teapot glistens in the winter sunshine!

Beatrix Potter's Charm

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The Royal Doulton China is painted with charming scenes by Beatrix Potter. Peter Rabbit will always be a favorite!

Scones and Tea

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Scones and salads with a hot pot of tea start the afternoon interlude.

Christmas Tea in the Sunshine

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Basking in the southwest sunshine on a December afternoon! It's tea time!!!!

Thursday, December 29, 2005

City Park 'n' Hitchin' Post

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Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, tht you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

Romans 15:13

Christmas Swag on Main

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I will dwell in them and walk among them, I will be their God, and they shall be My people.

2 Cor 6:16

Black Coffee

Good communication is as stimulating as black coffee, and just as hard to sleep after.

~ Anne Morrow Lindbergh ~

A good friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive,and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born.

~ Anais Nin ~ Posted by Picasa

An Eye in Common with Our Own

It is hard to believe that anything is worthwhile, unless there is some eye in common with our own, some brief word uttered now and then to imply that what is infinitely precious to us is precious alike to another mind.

~ George Eliot ~Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Ghost Town Wreath

A lonely ghost town with scarcly a human in view, but a cheerful Christmas wreath finds time to grace a porch post with good tidings.

Table Through Chairs

A Christmas table from a child's point of view.

Days Gone By

Our hearts grow tender with childhood memories and love of kindred, and we are better throughout the year for having, in spirit, become a child again at Christmas-time.

~Laura Ingalls Wilder ~

Christmas at Faraway Ranch

Biscuits and braided bread on holiday table.

Quilted Star of Christmas

I have always thought of Christmas time as a good time; a kind, forgiving, charitable, pleasant time; the only time of, in the long calendar of the year, when men and women seem by one consent to open their shut-up hearts freely.

-Charles Dickens

Welcome Lights

A circle. . .a place for family to share and create memories. . .in readiness.

And the Clock Strikes --- CHRISTMAS!

Christmas-that magic blanket that wraps itself about us, that something so intangible that it is like a fragrance. It may weave a spell of nostalgia. Christmas may be a day of feasting, or of prayer, but always it will be a day of remembrance– a day in which we think of everything we have ever loved.

~Augusta E. Rundel~

Nativity in Wood

Spinning characters from nativity scene. . .

A German Christmas

Porcelain Nativity

Aunt has this porcelain nativity displayed on a beautiful carved desk.

Nativity of Isreal

This beautiful nativity is handcrafted from special woods and was purchased by Aunt on one of her trips to Isreal.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Grandmother's Christmas Birthday

We enjoyed celebrating Grandma's 102 birthday with her this year. Aunt prepared a lovely, farm-style dinner. Table decor featured red apples and hunter green. Both went well with the beautiful Christmas decorations in her home. Great-uncle was able to attend (he's young at 90, compared to his older sister-in-law!). It was so special to be able to spend time with Grandma and the extended family.

Merry Christmas

A desert Christmas, this beautiful red ribbon adds a beautiful doorside greeting at Stovepipe Wells.