decorating with dodi

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Thursday, December 31, 2015

The "Extra" Gift

I think I have posted before about using things from my late mother to make holiday gifts to give to the family. It makes it feel as if she is watching over us and is, I think, a lovely way to use her things instead of just putting them in a drawer or closet.

My mom was not the world's best cook...she certainly tried. My brother and I got three meals a day as well as plenty of treats but my mom was a "safe" cook. She used very little spices and pretty much stuck to good old American cuisine. She did have her specialties-her meat loaf was one of my favorites and made with a brown gravy on top instead of ketchup. I also loved her pancakes. She made them from scratch and wanted to be sure they were nutritious-especially if they were to be a dinner food as they so often were. That made them dense and rubbery-just the way I liked them. Imagine my surprise when years later I found out pancakes were meant to be light and fluffy...but that didn't change my mind-I always loved hers best.

What I am getting around to is that there weren't many original recipes of hers to pass on but we did have our favorites and everyone wanted copies. When I set out looking, I realized that I had very few recipes in her handwriting-which is what I think the girls were longing for.

I also had just a few pieces of her silver left from when I was a girl and in the pattern that I remember our table set with every day.

I decided to put the two things together and make the women in our family a recipe card holder that serves double duty as a memento of my mom. I copied some of her favorite recipes and then found enough originals that everyone could have one in her hand. I bent the tines on a salad fork to hold a recipe card. My hope is that this will be a useful gift but also a lovely picture to keep in the kitchen to remind us all that mom is watching over us-always did and always will.

I chose a white washed frame because we all have such different decor in our kitchens but I am not crazy about how bland it came out so I am going to encourage everyone to paint their frames to make it more their own. I hope they get as much joy using it as I did looking back over so many memories when I was making it. Stay tuned.

I also felt bad as I was removing some of the decor in my bedroom to put up Christmas. Since one of the things being put away for a bit was my mom's framed pin, I remembered that I had two of her Christmas pins. It wasn't hard to frame them up and put them into the display. I love that so much of her stuff is now being used instead of just sitting in a box somewhere.

Always more to share, so stay tuned.

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

What Day is it Again???

Wow, what an amazing Christmas, week, MONTH we have had! I am still having trouble believing it is almost over but we have packed it full of so many, many memories!!

When I think back, I have a hard time realizing we have done so much and gone so many places:
     1. Spent almost a week with Kris and the girls in St. Pete doing lots of fun Christmas excursions
     2. Found time to make a Thomas Paine costume
     3. Had the 5 grand daughters here for our traditional Nutcracker weekend
     4. Had the "little" kids here for a number of visits and crafting
     5. Spent a family-filled game day at the Hollands
     6. Went to Christmas eve service with the Hollands
     7. Had everyone here for Christmas day
     8. Overloaded on fun in Savannah to celebrate our 50th anniversary!

I think I have shared most up to Christmas so today's post will cover that.

We went to a beautiful Childrens' Candlelight service on Christmas eve at Jen and Elton's church.

The music at this service was wonderful-especially the kids. Here they are singing and signing.

This one is hard to see, but it is our oldest grandson hanging the baby Jesus ornament on the Jess Tree.

Santa visited everyone in their own homes while Nana and Papa got ready for the fun to begin.

After way too many photos, they begin to go punchy!

The day was all about the smiles and hugs!

After gift opening, we all headed out to break in the go-cart that Santa brought to the Hollands. Nana couldn't let everyone else have all of the fun! I don't really know what comes over me-I drive a car like a grandma but get me on a bumper car or go-cart, and my inner "speed demon" comes out!

Once it got dark, the gang headed out for a light-up snowball fight! Thanks Uncle Todd for the furry, light-up snowballs. The kids had a blast.

Before too late, the "children were nestled all snug in their beds" while visions of Savannah danced in our heads.

More on that adventure in the next post. Stay tuned.

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Let's "Wrap" This Up!

Happy Christmas Eve. So much to still do, so little time. Thought I would do a quick wrap-up before I head back to the other kind of "wrap-up"...don't know how more things keep popping up that need to be wrapped, but, whatever:

I thought I took a picture of all of the lights on the house at night, but if I did, I can't find it, suffice it to say, we're pretty lit up-icicle lights running the whole length of the house, lights on the porch tree and icicle light show across the porch and up the peak. It is pretty but I'm thinking next year we might need to kick it up even more. I am missing the deer and a few other things we used to do...we shall see.

I have things scattered throughout the guest rooms but haven't added the fresh greenery yet...that is on the to-do list for today-as well as many other things, so I best get moving! I hope everyone has a blessed Christmas and the next time you hear from me, I will probably be posting about our 50th anniversary trip to Savannah-stay tuned.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

My Little Angels

 The other day I had two of the little kids here. I knew it might be a long day so I like to have all sorts of things to keep them busy. I happened upon a cute angel ornament and thought it might be fun for them to make.

Presley opted out because she wanted to get the doll houses decorated for Christmas but my little crafting buddy was raring to go.

As soon as I pulled out the printed copy of my "pin", I realized that there was no tutorial to take me to because this was actually an ornament available on Etsy...but, it was made from popsicle sticks so how hard could it be?

Hudson and I set out to make a prototype. Boy was this thing a bear-way more difficult than it looked but we persevered and he actually thought of a few things easier than I would have done them. He loves using my Dremel to drill so I let him go at it. Usually I worry that he might slip and get hurt but this time, he had it all over me and I let him go to town. He drilled holes through the round, wooden balls like a champ while all I succeeded in doing was burning the wood and getting the bit stuck!

We made enough so that he could give one to each family and were pretty proud of ourselves when we realized they didn't look quite right. Oops, we forgot the wings.

A few pieces of cardboard and lots of glitter and we were good to go. I bought some Christmas bags and ribbon and am going to take it along tomorrow when we head over for our baking adventure to let him wrap them up. He is so excited about giving these to everyone.

And then while I was cleaning up, he put his imagination to good use and came up with this all on his own. He is planning it as a gift for someone very special! Stay tuned.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

I Gave Up!

I truly believe that as I get older, there really are less hours in a day!! I just can't seem to ever get everything I want to do done. It used to be if I put it on a list for a certain day, I did not go to bed until everything on the list was done. Those days are gone. Now, I just move it to tomorrow's list, and then tomorrow's  and tomorrow's until there are NO MORE tomorrows left! That is kind of what happened with my plans to add another pallet sign to our collection. I had "pinned" so many Christmas sign ideas. I love making these things. They are fun to do and inexpensive to make...their only drawback is that they do take some time-something that is just not readily available in the month of December!

And so, when my BFF, Pottery Barn, sent me an email with an offer I could not refuse, I fell for it. The one spot that was still bothering me in the dining room was the "pear" picture over the love seat-don't know why but it just didn't seem to fit in. Then, I happened upon the tin star when I was down with Kris and now the sign completes the picture. Funny thing is that everyone who sees it automatically asks if I made it. I feel a little guilty-but, I'll get over it!

I really love this sign. It is painted on a reclaimed piece of wood and is just what was needed to fill this space with something a little more Christmasy!

And while we are in the dining room we might as well look around. I actually try to keep this room a bit less decorated because we use it a lot during the season and it is so much easier to do so without having so much to move.

We are almost finished with this year's tour-and good thing too as the day is almost upon us. Bake to baking cookies but I'll be back. Stay tuned.