Friday, December 31, 2010

My Word for 2011

Believe is my word for 2011.
Believe is a word that has tickled in the back of my mind
for several years.
It may be a difficult word, but I am ready for the challenge.
Focusing on a word I find that beside seeing the positive side,
I also see the negative side.
I feel up to the challenge for 2011.
My journal is ready.
To start the year out there will be a new
Monday series called, Spirit Whispers.
This series has also been percolating since I started to blog
and 2011 will be the year to listen and pay attention to what I Believe.

I do BELIEVE in magic, as shown in the picture.
I hope you will join me on the journey,
pull up a chair or a blanket, have a cup of tea, and share along with me.

Have you chosen a word for 2011?

Monday, December 27, 2010

JOY for 2010

Each year when a word chooses me I think this word will be easy to pay attention to.
Each year I am surprised by what I learn or struggle through.
I thought JOY would be super easy, but I was wrong.
As you can see in my collage, there is plenty of JOY in my life.
When I started to pay attention to JOY I started
noticing times when I didn't feel so Joyful.
Times of sorrow, sadness, and yep even some depression.
Sometimes it was difficult to rise above it and feel the JOY.
Sometimes others reminded me of my word, JOY, and
I would find superficial ways of creating the JOY.
Sometimes it was turning up the music loud and feeling it in my soul.
There were times when I needed to take an hour out of my day to walk through a garden.
But always that word would sing in my soul and I would remember.
I think JOY is a part of me and will creep into my words here from time to time;
but then that is a part of what Delights my Heart.

I hope you have found JOY this year and that
maybe the word you chose for 2010 has taught you some valuable lessons.

Do you have a new word for 2011?
I do have one, which I will tell you on Friday.
I will be away Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday
still finding the JOY in my days.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas

Celebrate Christmas with the Christ Child.
Blessings and Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Christmas Lily

Last week, as a gift to myself, I bought one branch of white lilies. 
There were seven buds on the one branch.
What a treat of both beauty and fragrance to celebrate
the season watching each bud open.
The JOY I have received from this one branch has been delightful.
It often is the small things that bring us so much pleasure.
What small things are you noticing this season that are bringing you JOY?

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Here We Come a-Caroling

I hadn't been caroling in many years.
I also hadn't waded through the crowds at Portland's Peacock Lane.
But last weekend I did both.
What fun it was!
The houses in the two blocks were decorated beautifully.

Even the horse drawn wagon was fun to see traveling along the street.
And there in front of the house in very big letters stood my word for the year.
The lights how they twinkled.
It definitely puts you in the spirit of the season.
Merry Christmas to All and to All a Good-night!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Tea Time in my Office

My office needed a tree to celebrate.
Well you know I am working on tea things in there.
It inspires me to tea.
So off to the kitchen for a cup of my favorite.
Then I sit here with my cup and share with you.
Friends are a Joy.
She remembered I loved this little cup and sent it to me.
Oh thank you for remembering me.
A tea house resides here too.
All lite up and waiting for you to come and have a cup of tea with me.
Another friend's sweet remembrance gifted me with this lovely little teapot.
Aren't friends the very best, so thoughtful to remember.
Christmas is a special time for sharing a cup of tea, but
especially for sharing friendship.
Thanks to each of you that leave comments here,
I feel like each one of you is a friend.
Have a wonderful Christmas, dear friends!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Through the Window


There is a house I daily pass
With finger marks on the window glass.

(Shadows of moments happily whiled
Away in the sun by a little child.)

The wide beveled panes next door to it are
Curtained and free of blemish, or scar.

If choice were given to any, who
Would waver a moment between the two?

For as fast as it's smudged, a mother then
May clean a glass til it shines again.

But none may burnish to brighter glints
Panes never soiled by small hand prints.

by Ethel Romig Fuller, Kitchen Sonnets

Photo ~ My Christmas tree through the window.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Angels Surround Us

Yesterday I had been "requested" to come to the court house for jury duty.
Sitting there quietly all morning waiting to be called I started thinking about the angels
around us.  At lunch time we were dismissed as most of the trials were settled out of court.
Rarely do I get downtown; so I decided to finish up a bit of Christmas shopping
and enjoy the hustle, bustle of city life.
As I walked along the side walk and saw people in need,
I was reminded of the angels around us.
Nearby a man handed a woman a card with a blessing on it and
with a request for help.  The woman didn't have much, but gave what she had in her pocket.
It reminded me of those that help others all year long in soup kitchens, or donating
to special causes, or praying, or just sitting with someone that needs a hand held.
There are angels all around us.
Take time to notice and send them a note of thanks, plus
find your opportunities to be angels to those you are around.

And because I usually write about tea on Fridays,
maybe someone just needs a listening ear and a cup of tea
to warm their soul.  

Take time to notice what you notice and be present.

PS: The quilt in the previous post is a very old
family quilt, which I am enjoying above my fireplace for the holiday season.  It is too fragile to use, but just to be enjoyed.

Thursday, December 16, 2010


The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there.
Have you ever seen a plain brown St. Nicholas?
He is an antique and was used to mold paper St. Nicholas's.
Is this St. Nicholas?
Is this my new favorite toy?
Will he leave me something under the tree?
Do I find my own ornaments hanging from the lower branches?
What fun this Christmas season is.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Take a Peek

Welcome, come inside.

Take a peek in the dollhouse.
When Tasha Tudor had young children she created an intricate dollhouse.
The dollhouse I have is not as detailed, but I put it out for the tea to represent what Tasha Tudor once did.
We had Strawberry Shortcake dolls living here, where Tasha had dolls she made
to represent the mid 1800's.  Her dolls had quite a story, the couple that resided there
had a wedding that was included in an old Time Magazine issue.  There was intrigue,
where the wife later lived in the attic and the husband found another woman to live in the house.

This dollhouse was designed by myself and made by my husband for our daughter when she was 3 years old.
It was so much fun to bring it out again and decorate it for Christmas.
So enjoy the peek and dream of living in a miniature house for the holidays.
I will join you for a cup of tea in the kitchen.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Take JOY, a Tasha Tudor Old Fashioned Christmas Tea

The annual event has come once again.
Lily's Holiday Tea
Each year I choose a different theme.
This year it was Take JOY, a Tasha Tudor Old Fashioned Christmas Tea.
Lily and her family started coming for tea when Lily was 4 years old
and now she is as tall as I am and 13 years old.

The menu:

Pumpkin Moonshine Soup
Stuffed Eggs
Tasha's Garden Sandwich
ChickaHominy Sandwich
Hot Cheese Rounds
Goat Cheese Tarts
Tea:  Tasha Tudor Welsh Tea
Scones with jam and cream
Gingerbread Doves and Corgi Dogs too
English Toffee Bars
Mincemeat Cookie Tarts
Dundee Cake
Tea:  Oolong tea

I reproduced the best I could a table setting from one of Tasha's books and had doves hanging above the table.
The dollhouse, which I will show another day, was decorated and ready for the celebration.
Several of the recipes came from the Tasha Tudor cookbook.
There were stories of Tasha to share and her special Welsh Tea
to drink.  There were new guests to celebrate, as Lily's grandmother had recently gotten married and her aunt brought along her partner.  Ten in all sat around the table celebrating
the holiday's together as a family.
It was a day of Delight!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Light Shine

Fill our lamps regularly
Let our lights shine!

 View for inspiration:
(as seen on Cheryl Richardson's weekly newsletter)

Friday, December 10, 2010

Chai Treat

 A special "me" treat is a cup of chai.
When I am out and about, I love stopping at the local coffee shop for chai.
Isn't this a beautiful cup of chai?
There are getting to be many companies out there selling there brand of chai.
The first one I discovered was Oregon Chai, made here in Oregon.
The owner was inspired to start the company after traveling to India
and having tea in little throw away ceramic cups on the street.
Dragonfly Chai is one I like because there is a sweet version
and a spicy version.   Love the spicy recipe.
Now I am finding shops that make there own,
that was the case here at a coffee shop called Mix Sweet Shop in Ashland, Oregon.
Do you drink chai?  Have you found a mix that is your favorite?
Right now at Starbucks you can ask for caramel flavoring be added to the chai, now that feels very festive.
I am on a path of discovery, looking for the best cup to savor.
Do tell, what is your favorite?

Thursday, December 9, 2010


And singing JOY to the World
A Merry Christmas to one and all!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Christmas at Monticello

Don't those pink lanterns just want to make you dance and celebrate?
On a recent visit to our local Monticello Antique Mall they were celebrating the season in style.
Pink, white, and creams were the color of their season.
So fresh and just plain gorgeous.
Isn't it fun to see a different perspectives on decorating when you travel through the malls?
I love it, it just makes my heart do a happy dance.
What is making your heart do a happy dance during this festive time?

Tip:  I have heard that those little bottle brush trees you find at craft stores in green can be bleached and sprinkled with sparkly stuff to look like the trees in the top middle picture.  I am going to try it as soon as I can get to the craft store.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Christmas Cards

Do you send Christmas cards?
Do you ever make them?
My friends have come to expect homemade cards.
Being a person that loves to recycle and find new uses for items,
the past two years I have recycled the cards sent to me from the year before.
Crazy, maybe?
Last year I made bookmarks and resent them back to the same person that sent it to me the year before,
Well this year, every time I enjoyed a cup of chai at the local coffee shop I saved the
sleeve they put around the cup and made my cards from them.
Inside it says: May you be wrapped in the warmth of the holiday season.
The heart came from the card they sent me last year.
Oh the giggles and chuckles I had making them.
You are welcome to copy the idea, but fair warning - your friends might think you have totally lost it.
The sentiments are passed on to each of you:
May you be wrapped in the warmth of the holiday season.

Monday, December 6, 2010

It's Beginning to look like Christmas

The past weekend was full of holiday JOY.
This week I do believe I will share some of that JOY.
It is indeed beginning to look like Christmas everywhere I go.
Saturday we traveled to the country for hot chocolate and donuts.
There were families and children of all shapes and sizes.
Isn't that what the holidays is all about, children?
Maybe throw in a few donkeys, a horse or two, and a few
Christmas trees and what you have is just delightful.
Are you getting out, enjoying the season, maybe playing too?

Friday, December 3, 2010

Teacup Collecting?

I will tell you, "No, I don't collect teacups".
I only have this one Christmas teacup.
It is so fun to bring it out for the holidays.
I do believe it is beginning to look like Christmas.
But for sure I don't collect teacups or teapots.
Do you?
This is my kitchen cupboard.

Thursday, December 2, 2010


Oh the colors of Christmas are here.
Someone is dreaming of all those dangling things.
Colors so pretty and bright.
They sing in the lights.
How I wish I could play.
It's so exciting around here.
We are decorating, preparing for a great event.
Come and play with me.
Let's celebrate and dance for JOY.
Dream dreams that dance in the night.
Sing songs and laugh.
Celebrate with a warm cup of tea
Wrap in a quilt
Sit by the fire

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Can you smell them?

Searching for the perfect tree.
Is this the one?

Can you smell them?
The fragrance is divine.
The country side looks ready.
The ground is so soft.
It is like walking on a pine scented sponge in the forest.
Mushrooms were everywhere growing.
The sky looked like it would erupt, but
it waited for us to find the perfect tree.
Yes, the tree was found, cut, then loaded into the car.
How lovely are the trees this time of year.
More lovely is the search and the walk in the country.
Do you find a live tree for your celebrating?
The live one sits in the living room,
but two imitations also adorn the house.
Oh how I love these gorgeous trees.
They delight me!