Tuesday, January 29, 2013

~Pieces of the Afternoon~

 Today has been one of those dark-cloudy-rainy-mixed-with-slush-and-wind-days. Damp and yuck to put it mildly.

That being so, I'm loving bright spots of color wherever I can get it!
Enter my wonderful little red-flowered plant for $2.49 from Trader Joe's. 
I have no idea what it's called (other than little red-flowered plant), but it's making me very happy. :)

After a morning of teaching I got the bread-to-be in the bread machine for dinner, took care of some urgent emails/phone calls and picked up a wee bit in the basement. 

Upstairs I found the Youngest settled under the quilt with a good page-turner. Seeing him cozying-in for the afternoon lead me into a little relaxing time for myself:

Some winter puzzling . . . 

and some afternoon tea.

Oh! and a few heart-shaped cookies may have added to the afternoon's enjoyment as well.

I turned on some Frank and while he crooned I enjoyed a good hour of winter leisure.

Earl grey; a bite of cookie; another piece interlocked into the growing mosiac.
Yes . . . it's the simple things. :)

I finally have my own copy of Brambly Hedge's 'Winter Story' by Jill Barklem. One of my all time favorites. I've always had to check it out from the library year after year and it's so nice to just have it around for cozy perusing. Kind of funny that I had the matching teacup before I even owned the book!

It was a pleasant afternoon for sure, but don't think it was all roses.

Real life came back in full swing with a bad cat peeing where he shouldn't, school application messes to fix, a pointless school info. meeting to suck the life from me, and 'mount ironing' beckoning.

All to say, the afternoon playtime was all the more appreciated. :)

I hope everyone is having a lovely Tuesday so far and that bits of afternoon leisure await you as the week plays out.


Saturday, January 26, 2013

~Winter Nesting~

Been having a cleaning, organizing, baking, creating sort of weekend. In other words . . . winter nesting.

And speaking of nesting, isn't my 'happy new year' bird sweet? My wonderful mother gave him to me a couple years ago. He is happy to oversee the comings and goings in the living room. The candle acts as a little fireplace to keep him warm if he gets chilly. ;)


 It's been fun to simplify with white . . .
and at the same time, cozy things up by adding a little 'more'.
As in more comfort- like pillows.

And nothing makes nesting even more pleasurable then the smell of scones baking in the oven. 

Okay, yes- eating them is better then just smelling. ;)

Hoping tomorrow will allow enough time to finish up the undone bits of today . . . a half finished table cloth, an ironing pile that reaches to the sky and a few more tweaks around the house to better snug us in. But I'm leaving all that for right now . . . a night out with a girlfriend is about to begin!

Hoping your weekend is full of cozy bits of home. :)


Monday, January 21, 2013

~Wintry Sunday~

We went out into the frosty cold, wintry world. The four of us.
On a Sunday afternoon.

There was blue sky and thick frost all mingled together.

The Oldest thought licking ice-covered leaves was good entertainment.

 The Youngest just wanted to run free ahead.

And I wanted to capture the wintry world around us all.

And I paid the price with freezing fingers. 

Home again, and how sweet it is after bone-chilling cold! 
Nothing fits the bill for belly warming like hot, homemade bread, salad and . . .

made-from-scratch tomato soup steaming in a bowl; melting down the cheese; melting away the cold.

The evening was right for a treasured family tradition:
Snowflake Making.

The Oldest helps cut the white squares. I create the awards. The funnest part is picking the categories.

We all take part. Scissors snip. Bits of white fall to the floor. As they are unfolded exclamations are made . . . some good, some not so good.

 And then the windows are adorned with white. And every flake is indeed different. 

We pay tribute to our handy work.

And next morning, as the sun streams in . . .

we have unmeltable reminders of our wintry Sunday.


Tuesday, January 15, 2013

~Bits of Winter~

We are in full-blown winter around here . . .

So very cold, but the only snow seems to be coming from my imagination!

Kitties are curled up on quilts for twenty hours a day . . . preferably in my coziest chair.

And in the very few moments they are not about the business of sleeping, they are out to take care of business as quick as a flash and within moments are yowling at the door, "Let me in- it's freezing out here!"

 If they (and us) are extra lucky there is a fire blazing and a vacant rocking chair nearby to lounge in.

 Earlier last week we said good-bye to the remains of Christmas and did our annual tree-burning in the fireplace.

 Topped off with a family game of 'Trouble', it was a fine evening. But how vacant it feels without all the extra trimmings around.

Still, there are bits about to warm the winter days . . .

be it a spot of decorating. . .

or finding inspiration from something unexpected.

There have also been lots of steaming mugs of tea to keep our hands warm.

 I've been especially enjoying my fabulous new bird mug- a birthday present from my mother. Isn't it cute? Just the thing for these chilly days.

Tea and a muffin . . . possibly the very best part of winter.

 And as for the least enjoyable part? Probably this rotten cold I'm fighting. Good thing I have black elderberry extract to add to all that tea. It keeps the worse at bay!

May these January days find you and your household healthy and enjoying all the bits of winter (or summer if applicable!) that come your way.


Thursday, January 10, 2013

~Fuzzy Wuzzy~

And to continue on the 'bear' theme from the last post . . .

I am very pleased to share with you a twenty second peek into the mind of a thirteen year old boy- my thirteen year old boy. Scared?
Don't worry- this clip has been deemed 'appropriate' for all ages. ;) 

This entire blurb was done by hand by my kiddo last night for fun. 
I wanted him to share a bit about himself here- do a mini 'guest post' but he declined. I guess I'm lucky he let me share this on my blog at all! So I'll be a nice mom and not say anything super embarrassing (if I can help it) and maybe he'll share some more someday. . .

But really, I'm pretty amazed at what he can do in a couple hours of  free time. 
He has learned so much from his M.I.A. (Movie Image Arts) class in one semester that it has really blown my mind. He knows how to make and edit videos, add sounds/effects, etc. . . he even knew how to upload this snippet to my blog for me! For someone as un-tech savvy as myself, I'm quite impressed!

I'm very proud to say this is his drawing, his idea and his sense of humor . . . Enjoy!
(I admit he got his sense of humor from me)


Tuesday, January 8, 2013

~Feeling 'Bear-ly' Here~

Some bears hibernate for the winter. 
Other bears are used as fat to line the stomachs of females longing to hibernate for the winter. 
This bear is from the latter group. 
So is this female.


Friday, January 4, 2013

~This Little Light of Mine~

A warm welcome to you and to the brand new year!

The weather here has finally proven it is indeed wintertime. New Year's Eve gave us our first snowfall, though it was only a dusting. Still, what peacefulness and contentment to have spent an unspoiled hour just watching it fall, changing from tiny little spitting flakes to fat and lacy white confetti.

The 'big birthday week' was full but quite nice . . . that week being the 17-25th as we celebrated Husband's birthday (17th), my birthday (21st) and Jesus' birthday. Though, I admit my favorite week of the whole year is the week after Christmas. The boys were off to Nana's and the Husband and I were all alone to sleep long, eat junk, play card games, watch movies, read and talk. I feel so rejuvenated after a week of slovenliness. I admit the 'back at it' has not been the easiest to go back to.

In fact, yesterday I was a bit down and overwhelmed with life-stuff, and I found myself really wanting to buy something. Silly, I know- especially right after being spoiled with birthday presents- but there it is. I think it has to do with nearly a year of no work and our unemployment soon to run out. Something in me just wants to shop and, yes- this is not the best timing. However . . .

I think God gets it (even though I don't) and more than that, He gives me again just what I don't deserve.

I had to take the Youngest to Walmart yesterday so that he could use his Christmas money to purchase CO2 cartridges for the airsoft gun he received as a Christmas gift.
I haven't been in a Walmart for probably 2 1/2 to 3 years. And you know what I found?

One dollar candles . . . that actually SMELL GOOD! And in a cute little jar to boot! I got 'the nod' from God, and bought myself one little treat. :)
But the good stuff really didn't stop there.
Due to depression and stress and all the difficulties in life over the past year, I really haven't been creating like I used to. Or decorating much. Or really CARING about all the things that normally make me, 'me'.
I've been numb.
But yesterday, I sat down with my little candle, peeled off the ugly label it came with, and decided to do what I've always felt is part of what I was made for . . .

 I made something a little more beautiful.

And as I just DID SOMETHING with what I had . . . I ended up feeling like this little candle and I had something in common.

We both have a little light to let shine . . . and a purpose for being lit up in the first place.

I hope this new year, this fresh start, will find all of us lit up with the purpose we were each uniquely created for.