Friday, December 30, 2011

Hat's Off to the New Year

My sister and  neice and I decided in the early fall that our Christmas gifts to one another had to meet special conditions.  They had to be either handmade or thrifted!  So with that stipulation in mind I made my neice and sister these hats from a pattern that I thrifted for .35 at the Goodwill.
 They were made of black twill and lined in a grey and white paisley fabric.  I added a black and white polka dot ribbon to the outside and on the side there is a small black and while polka dot bow.  They both loved them and called them their "Going to estate sales hats"! 
Silly girl!
My sister was also thrilled with the 1950's house coat that my neice bought her!  It is so pretty!  She is going to feel just like Doris Day wearing that around the house.  This beautiful robe only cost a couple of dollars!
And I got 3 boxes of these beautiful vintage Christmas balls!  I can't wait until next Christmas for them to adorn my tree!
We had so much fun with our vintage and handmade gifts and not only were they great gifts, we didn't have to break the bank buying gifts for each other!  

I wish everyone the Happiest of New Year's!  I pray that 2012 is your best year ever!



Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Christmas Fun!

Good Morning!  It's a blustery day in SW Virginia.  No snow yet!  Drat!  And of course we didn't have a white Christmas, but it was a beautiful sunny day!

My dear husband and son are the two most thoughtful gift givers in the world.  They really think about what I love and this year was no exception! 

All my life I have had an obsession with Teaberry gum!  I would search it out in little stores when I was a kid spending my hard earned allowance on it!  Then it became almost impossible to find.
At my grandparents farm, the teaberry plant grew wild in the hills by the creek and Grandma and I would hike up to her "secret" patch and chew the leaves or she would make tea from them!  I tried several times unsuccessfully to get the plants to grow at my house.

Then when I was a teenager (and a strange teenager who collected antique dishes) I found out that Teaberry gum had it's own Vaseline glass store display!  Unfortunately, it was way out of my price range to  purchase.  Every time I am at a antique store I look for the display dishes and they are always more than I can afford.  So you can imagine my surprise Christmas morning when I unwrapped this:

 You can't tell from my awful photo, but the base of the stand says Teaberry Gum!  Not only did he get the stand but found a small ruler and ledger book with the Teaberry advertising logo on it!  You can not imagine how excited I was!  Then to put the icing on the cake my son gave me this to match:
 A beautiful Vaseline glass cream pitcher!  I can not tell you how pretty this is!  I was so surprised!
So this weekend I am heading out to Cracker Barrel to get me a stash of Teaberry gum to put on my stand! 
I hope everyone had a happy Christmas!  Looking forward to a brand new year with no mistakes in it! Yet!


Friday, December 23, 2011

Away in a Manger....

Do you have a nativity or manger scene?  I love to see all the styles of Nativity scenes that there are available. 

Mine is very unique because it is a hob-cobble of various pieces.  It's also been described as very ugly.  But you know what?  I don't care because every single piece of it is so special to me.

 See.....The Joseph, Mary, Baby Jesus, the chalk angel on the right and the one chalk king belonged to my Grandmother who bought them when she started working at age 16.  That would have been 1928.  It originally of course had two other kings and a sort of cardboard type manger however that fell apart when my parents started using it in the early 1960's.  At some point it looks like someone tried to repaint the holy family and didn't do much a great job!
 My mom added the shiny plastic angels and the shiny plastic wisemen on their camels.  When I was little this set under our aluminum tree and when the light wheel spun it's colors on the wisemen it looked just like they lit up and I would lie under the tree and watch it until sometimes I would fall asleep.  The sheep I won in Bible school when I was little by memorizing verses and the chicken my son added when he was about 3 or 4.
 The colors on the wisemen are starting to wear off now.
The actual stable my husband made for me when we first got married 31 years ago.

Just like me, my Nativity set is imperfect.  It's not beautiful, fancy or costly.  But I wouldn't trade it for a million dollars!  Every year when I set out all the figures I think about how my grandmother and mom would put it out each year and it brings me closer to both of those dear ladies who are celebrating Christmas with Jesus.
Hope everyone has a wonderful Christmas!


Monday, December 19, 2011

How I met the "Real" Santa - My Favorite Christmas Memory

Long ago, back in 1966 my Mom and Dad decided to have a Christmas party on Christmas Eve for our extended family as they had just bought our new house that year and wanted to have everyone over to see it. 
Mom called up the family and said "Come on over Christmas Eve and bring a dish for everyone to share! "
My Great Aunt Clara and Uncle Roy came early to help us clean and get ready for the party.
Around 6:00 everyone started showing up!  What fun to see cousins and Aunts and Uncles that I had not gotten to see very often.  Gifts were layed on the freezer in the basement where the party was being held and coats were put on the beds.  There were kids everywhere and the food was abundant!

Around 8:00 the doorbell rang upstairs and Aunt Clara went up to answer it.  Imagine our delight and surprise when down the stairs she came with Santa Claus!  We were so excited!  All except my 1 year old sister who was terrified and jumped on her spring horse and tried to make a getaway!  (We have that caught on 8mm film, and it is hysterical!).  Anyway, Santa joined in on our fun, had some treats, then passed out the gifts that the kids had brought for each other.  (I got stupid underwear with the days of the week on them from my cousin and I had given him a wonderful fire truck with a siren that worked!). 

Around 9:00 he said he must hurry on because he had so many more houses to visit.  He went out the basement door and walked down the road until we could see him no more.

Soon after all the kids and kin left except Aunt Clara and Uncle Roy who were spending the night.  That next day, Christmas Day, after all the gifts were open and we were eating breakfast Aunt Clara says to my Mom. "That was a great idea getting Santa to come to the party"!  Mom looks at her bewildered and said. "Uh, I didn't get him to come to the party, I thought you did".   Aunt Clara said "Nope, not me".  Dad and Uncle Roy are questioned, they say no, they have no idea, they thought Mom had him come.

Calls are made through the family, who asked Santa to come to the party?  Everyone says they didn't do it!

To this day, no one knows who the Santa was who came to our Christmas party on Christmas Eve!  But I have always believed..... it was the real "Santa"

Hope everyone has a wonderful and stress free Christmas week!


Friday, December 09, 2011

Peanut Butter Blossoms

There are some things that are a MUST for our family at Christmas and one of those things are the making of Peanut Butter Blossoms.  These are hands down, my favorite cookie.  I mean, what's not to like?  There's chocolate and peanut butter! 

Peanut Butter Blossoms

1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup peanut butter
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 cup sugar ( I use colored sugar for Christmas!)
48 Hershey kisses, unwrapped

Preheat oven to 350F.  Combine the 1/2 cup brown sugar, butter and peanut butter in a large bowl.  Beat at medium speed until light and fluffy.  Add egg, vanilla, and salt and continue bating until well mixed.  Add flour and baking soda.  Continue beating until well mixed.

Shape into 1 inch balls (you may have to refrigerate your dough if it's too sticky, usually I don't have to.) and roll balls in colored sugar.  Place on parchment lined cookie sheets about 2 inches apart.  Bake for 8-10 minutes or until lightly golden.  Immedicately place 1 kiss in the center of each cookie, lightly pressing down.  Cool on wire racks.

Grab a glass of milk and eat approximately 10 of these while they are still warm!

Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!



Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Hello my name is Linda and I'm a Christmas decoration addict!

Does anyone know if there is a local chapter of Elves anonymous is SW Virginia??  I need an intervention!

This weekend Yngie and I went out to a local flea market where I had previously sworn I would never go again because of all the crappy, cheap, new junk that every vendor seemed to have.  But as usual I ate my words and went because I was looking for something "Harley" related for my Dad for Christmas. 

After perusing the "Biker" shop and finding absolutely nothing, I decided we could walk around a little.  I heard some Bing Crosby crooning from a downstairs basement shop and decided to follow the music.  Imagine my surprise when I walked upon a whole floor of a mother and son duo selling all vintage items!  No new junk and very reasonable prices as well.   I could have spent a fortune in there, however I don't have a fortune, so this is what I bought.

 Now depending on your taste, these are either "evil" looking pixies (so my son says) or absoultely adorable pixies (so I say)  either way there are making their home in my Christmas Happy Shelves.
How can you not love an elf on a shoe?
 It was so funny that the lady selling these elves insisted that the knee hugger elf HAD to remain in the creamer and wouldn't sell them separately.  However it was only $2.00 for the elf in the creamer so I was okay with that!
A cute little angel candle holder and Mrs Santa
 I think the mouse is from Cinderella but I'm not sure.  The angel is kind of weird.  She has a pipe cleaner body with a nylon bust and a china head.  Odd, but I loved her sweet face.

Chrismas decorations weren't all I bought.  Oh no!  I like to diversify!  I bought a box of paper dolls!

 This doll originally came with a record however it wasn't in the box with her but she has some beautiful clothes!

 These Shirley Temple dolls were in the same box, with her clothes too!
 Also Desi Arnez with some fabulous outfits.
 And this little doll just says Flowergirl and has the sweetest clothes.
And I'm not really sure who the singing cowboys are.  Maybe Gene Aurty?  I know it's not Roy Rogers and maybe they don't have names but I really like their outfits.  I'm thinking of framing these paper dolls and hanging them in my craft room.  Maybe an after Christmas project.
So, now I'm thinking about going back next weekend.  See!!!  I told you I need an intervention!


Friday, December 02, 2011

It's Beginning to look alot like Christmas!

Good Friday Morning!  It is a cold but sunny day here is SW Virginia and it looks like it is going to be a beautiful weekend.  Hopefully I can get outside and finish putting the wreaths of my windows and decking the outside of my abode!

Inside however, I've been digging through bins of Christmas treasures and having a grand old time decorating our home.

I love it when I finally get to put out all those little decorations that I buy at estate sales over the summer!

                         Such sweet little Christmas Angels!
An adorable little Josef elf and an elf on a bell.  Love my elves!
I loved the praying angels the very minute I saw them.  And doesn't that little elf look mischevious?  And I payed .79 for the Frosty Friends Hallmark ornament!  The Annalee lady cost me an entire $1.00!
And last but not least, this plastic Santa rounded out my finds for the summer.  I'm quite proud of the fact that I didn't buy as much stuff this summer as I have in the past.  My Chrismas collection is getting out of hand as you can see!

On the top shelf of my Happy Shelves, is where most of my "Santa's" live.  One of my favorites is the tiny troll Santa in the front that my son bought me for Christmas last year.
I bought this Santa on a tricyle, in it's orignal box a year or so ago.  Don't you just love the bright colors!
And look at this face!  Oh my goodness, I could just kiss those big, ole' plastic cheeks!
This is the only kind of mouse that I want in my house.
Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!