Thursday, February 26, 2015

February Rudolph Day, part 2

Gorgeous ... from the inside of a vintage card.  Looks like a watercolor, doesn't it?
 Just had to report a teensy bit more of Rudy Day activity between yesterday and today ... not much, but a little!

Yesterday I enjoyed a mug of Merry Mint tea and did just a bit of planning for my Christmas in July posts.  I planned posts for four of the days in July ... no writing yet, just planning.  I also did a bit more browsing in my Gooseberry Patch Christmas Book #8.

Today I again listened to my Piano Winterlude CD and had some Candy Cane Lane tea.  I also spent a half hour working on my "Snow Angels" counted cross stitch UFO.

And, for a wonderful surprise, I found in the mail a small parcel from my crafting friend Ann.  It contained a bunch of vintage Christmas cards!  None were duplicates of any that I have.  I will be scanning these fun cards to share them all with you in the coming days.  This surprise was the frosting on the cake for my Rudy Day!


Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Rudolph Day for February, Part 1


From a vintage A&P coffee ad.  Wish I owned these cups!
Rudolph Day is, of course, today -- February 25.  But because Wednesdays are always a busy day for me, I decided to see what I could do yesterday in the way of Rudolph Day celebrating.  Here's some of what I did:

* Enjoyed a mug of Merry Mint tea.
* Listened to a pretty Christmas CD,  Piano Winterlude.
* Spent a half hour working on my "Snow Angels" cross-stitch UFO in a patch of wintry sunshine.
* Gave a small amount of thought to Christmas in July posts for my Christmas kitchen, which I hope to plan, write, and schedule ahead for the month of July.
* Browsed through Gooseberry Patch Christmas book #8 while eating lunch.
* Scanned a Christmas card and posted about it here.
* Cut out and pinned together 2 Christmas mug mats and finished sewing one.

It was still a busy day with a lot of work and responsibilities, but what a happy time I had celebrating Rudy Day a day early!



Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Another mailbox card


Today I am celebrating Rudolph Day (the 25th) a little bit early.  Wednesdays are always busy for me, so I'm not sure how many Christmasy things I can do on the actual day.  Today I was cleaning the glass on my little glass-topped crafting desk, and changing out the cards I display there.  The ones I took down were Christmasy, but the ones I replaced them with were still pretty wintry, since we still have tons of snow, ice, and subzero temps up here.

If you've visited my Christmas kitchen often, you know I am completely fascinated by Christmas cards depicting mailboxes, especially those filled with presents and cards.  So back when I was posting about some of my newer mailbox cards, I noticed this one which I'd displayed beneath the glass on my crafting desk.  At the time, the desk was pretty laden with projects and so I decided I would scan that card later when I changed out the cards.  And here it is!

It's another card with a design by Chuck Sumerlin.  Although it's not as pretty as some of the older ones in my collection, I like the contrast of the black & white scene with the colorful packages.  Hope you've enjoyed seeing it, too!

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

"Country Christmas" ~ a fun Christmas poem


I've been going through a few more of my older December issues of Country Woman.  The poem I'm sharing today is from the November/December 1989 issue and is written by Kathy A. Schaeffer of Sunbury, PA.  It's a lighthearted poem that brings back memories of my childhood Christmases.  Here it is:

Country Christmas

It's Christmas in the country,
The mantel's trimmed with cards;
Friends and neighbors far and near
Stop in with their regards.

A cheery wreath adorns the door,
An angel tops the tree,
And colored lights are strung about,
Twinkling merrily.

Mistletoe hangs from the door,
The children just can't wait;
Time seems to pass so slowly,
They want to celebrate.

Then when at last the day arrives,
There's magic in the air --
It's Christmas in the country,
And what a grand affair!
-- Kathy A. Schaeffer

The descriptions in this bit of verse remind me so much of my childhood Christmases at my grandmother's big white farmhouse.  She had cards taped up around the kitchen, colored electric candles in the windows, and much, much more.  It was a magical place and time to me!

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Happy Valentine's Day to you!


I hope that each of you reading this will have a wonderful Valentine's Day!  May you spend some time reflecting on God's incredible love for you.  I hope that you will have some quality time with those you love, as well.

Today I am just going to share some Valentine-related photos, many of which are older family photos or of Valentine crafts.  Enjoy!

Baby Sam makes Valentine cookies!

Some of the felt Valentine cookies I've made

Handmade by my daughter Joanna many years ago

Little Sarah shows off pressed Valentine cookies!


I bought this and the one below at a consignment shop in Nevada

I display them every February



I made this tag some years ago

The reverse of the tag; I designed it to feature this photo (below) of Joanna and my dad.

Skating on the old mill pond
Mackenzie shows off a heart banner we made in 2013

I made this "love" banner many years ago




Happy Valentine's Day!   Hope it's love-ly!

Thursday, February 05, 2015

A delicious candy recipe!


I like to try out different candy recipes throughout the year so I will be prepared with some ideas when Christmas rolls around.  Very often, the candy recipes work out well for Valentine's Day, too.

This Chunky Peanut Brittle  is a recipe I've been wanting to try for awhile.  The candy really doesn't taste like brittle at all to me, as it isn't hard or crunchy.  It's more like a toffee or Heath bar, just less hard. 

The author of the recipe said other nuts could be substituted for peanuts.  I didn't have peanuts on hand, so I used chopped pecans.  The candy turned out very well in spite of the fact that my candy thermometer is not up to par. I just kept testing it in cold water until it got to what I figured was the hard crack stage, and it worked out fine, but seemed to take a long time.  I probably need to buy a new candy thermometer before next Christmas!

Saturday, January 31, 2015

Some simple after-Christmas crafting


Super simple gift tags
Since Christmas, I've been able to craft a few simple items so thought I would quickly share them.  One of my goals this year is to nurture my creativity, so I'm not losing any time getting started.  I'm trying to do something creative every day, even if it's only cooking or thinking of a creative solution or tactic in homemaking.
For Christmas gifts for my daughters and several friends, I made these fabulous "Best of My Days" cards from Ashley at Under the Sycamore.  I had such fun designing the packaging.  This is one that I made as a New Year gift for a friend. 
Christmas Star dishcloth
Gift tags from 2014's Christmas cards
Winter-themed table topper (more pics on my regular blog)
More of the simple gift tags I made from the metal-rimmed paper tags and small embellishments
These projects are simple, but they have been fun for me and have definitely helped me stay sane during a cold and busy January!