Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Sparkle and Shine

There is something I just love about Christmas decorations as I get older,
it is the sparkle and shine.
How it delights my eyes and heart.
Then it is the memories too.
This shiny satin dress at the antique mall brought memories
of playing in my mother's wedding dress.  The fabric was the same.
How it shined.

Just a glimpse of the a silver foil tree
and sparkly Christmas balls brought laughter to my soul.
There is a reverence to the season that is never forgotten,
but the sparkle and shine just dances before me.
And the lights, oh yes the lights sing my song.
It can't get much better than this,
and this!
or even this!!!
Do you love the sparkle and shine of the season?

 All photos taken at Monticello Antique Mall.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

The Russian Tea

Delighted to share this wonderful tea time.
The Heathman Hotel started serving The Russian Tea the day after Thanksgiving.
What a delight to be served by the head chef, Vitaly Paley, just yesterday.
It was the beginning of the holiday season
and a joyful time of sharing tea with my "live-in gardener".
The tea station was nearby and they were serving Smith's Teamaker teas.
In my cup was Georgian Caravan with elderflower jam.
In my "live-in gardeners" cup was Meadow, a blend of
chamomile, hyssop, rooibos, rose petals, and linden flowers.

There were samovar's for heating and serving hot water
and samovar's for decoration.  All just beautiful.
The food was uniquely Russian and several recipes
came from Vitaly Paley's grandmother.
There was Khachapouri (georgian cheese bread with local honey,
Buterbrodi (open faced rye bread with toppings of sausage,
another with smoked salmon, and delicious cheese spread)
Walnut-stuffed eggplant rolls was delicious,
along with traditional blini and mushroom piroshki.

The sweets were Kulaga belorusskaya (fruit gelee), Zapekanka (cheesecake with
apricots and caramel glaze), Tort po kievski (hazelnut meringue with coffee buttercream,
chocolate ganache), Bird's milk cake (shortbread cookie, marshmallow, chocolate glaze),
and Steopka (grandmother's sour cream and walnut cake).
There were too many desserts to eat, a take home box accompanied us home
for a later in the evening treat.  They were so rich I couldn't even eat
all of them in the evening.  Breakfast with my tea was a delicious remembrance.

The Russian Tea was a special way of kicking off the holiday season.
Let the celebrating begin!

Do you have any special tea time's planned for celebrating Christmas?

Monday, November 28, 2016

Notes from the Garden - Silver Maple

 The silver maple provides home for bees, squirrels, birds,
and an occasional raccoon.
 When it rains a root holds water for the birds.
 It shelters us.
And delights us with it's presence.
Young boys dream of climbing this magnificent tree.
It has been hugged and sketched.
Admired by all those that visit the garden.
It's twiggy branches greet us shining above our home
when we return from our travels.
It's character delights our heart.

The arborist says the tree only has about 10 more years left,
after all it is 165 years old.
Sometimes I find my "live-in gardener" praying it will live
and flourish under his care.

We treasure this tree in our garden
and if a tree is loved, this one tree has that love.

Friday, November 25, 2016

Tea Time for the Holidays

The antique mall didn't have much in the way of tea time accoutrements,
but never the less what I did find led my mind to think of teas
I might serve with holiday meals.
Yesterday I made a larger than usual pot of tea just to celebrate the day.
It was served in a golden teapot with Alishan Black tea inside.
Oh it satisfied that need for a good cup of tea quite wonderfully.
Rich with flavor and just the right bit of warmth to my soul.
For my family, when it came time for tea, it was Tulsi,
a herbal infusion from India that they enjoyed.
So I seem to be the only caffeinated one.
but even so we enjoyed the day together.

I hope you had time to sit for awhile with a cup of tea.

What flavor was in your cup?

Thanksgiving is a time for family and for friends,
a Delight to our Hearts.

Have a very special weekend, dear friends! 

Linking to Bernideen at

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Thanksgiving Blessings

In a Woman's Way

Life, dear Lord, makes so many demands
On a woman's heart, of a woman's hands--
I've a house to keep; I have children, a man;
I have to hurry, I have to plan--
Oh, I seldom have time for slipping away
From my duties in some quiet corner to pray,
But like meadow larks that soaring sing,
I must talk to you, Lord, as it were, on the wing.

Do acknowledgments hold less of gratitude
If sent in the midst of preparing food?
Of sweeping a floor; of sewing a button;
Of bathing a baby; ordering mutton?
Are petitions less fervent, if one only asks
As one works, for strength for finishing tasks?
Although I can't kneel, when the bell in the steeple
Is pealing a summons to all devout people,
Please, Lord, remember in her humble way,
 A woman is keeping Thanksgiving today.

~Kitchen Sonnets by Ethel Romig Fuller

Dear Friends,
May your Thanksgiving be blessed!
Each day a day to give with Gratitude and Love!

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Dear Panda, My Love

 Dear Panda, My love,

Recently I was timidly greeted by one of your ancestors.
He was peeking at me behind a glittery picture at the antique mall.
He captured my heart, just as you had so many years ago.
He caused me to remember you, a love of my childhood.
Do you remember?
You were tattered and torn, filthy in fact.
One day as my mother was running the wringer washer
I decided you needed a bath.
You weren't very happy about it
and you became rather soggy.
Then my mom ran you through the wringer.
Oh poor, panda, oh so flat.
You just didn't recover and my mom tossed you in the trash.
I will never forget you, my dear panda, and the tears I shed for you.
How I missed you so.
Then this one tentatively peeked at me and sent me love
and I remembered you.

Did I buy him, you ask?
No, I left him for another child to love.
I did place him just so, for I wanted someone to discover him
and rescue this bear with a big heart.

You will always remain in my heart, dear Panda.

Love, Mar Mar

Did you have a special love when you were a young child?

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Red, Singing to my Heart

There is my Seth sitting in the tree with a pretty red sweater.
He is surrounded by red.
When I arrived at this dress red was dancing in my eyes.
I loved the dress, but alas it wouldn't fit me.
Red is my grandson's favorite color
and it was everywhere.
Do any of you remember coats in this style.
It reminded me of Jackie Kennedy.
A red Santa sitting amongst the glitter.
I couldn't resist taking a picture of this red hat,
but there I am in a red jacket too.

For those that have read my Delights of the Heart for a long time,
you might remember my annual venture to the Monticello Antique Mall
for their holiday show.
The past few years has been a lot of white and glitter,
but when I entered the show this year RED certainly danced before my eyes.
This week I will share a bit of what I saw there.
It always Delights my Heart with JOY
and for a few moments I can escape the maddening world.

Monday, November 21, 2016

Notes from the Garden - Salvia

 Pineapple Sage, a medicinal and wonderful flavor resides in my herb
garden.  This is the first year it has produced gorgeous red flowers.
Black and Blue Salvia, an ornamental which sits just under the
hummingbird feeder.  Oh, the hummingbirds love the combination.
They delight in the flavor.

Same family, different purposes.
I do love salvia and the varieties they produce.
Happy times in the garden.

Friday, November 18, 2016

A Place at the Table

A song which is sung at my church has been singing through me
the past week.
Yes, there is a place at the table for everyone.
It doesn't matter what color, what shape, or
what design you are.
There is a place for you here with me.

Normally I am not political on Delights of the Heart,
but my heart has been broken and not easily repaired.
Read the following words, which I am embracing.

For Everyone Born
A Place at the Table
“A Place at the Table” was evoked by the UN Declaration of Human Rights
and the authors involvement with Amnesty International.
It should be sung at a spirited pace.
For everyone born, a place at the table,
for everyone born, clean water and bread,
a shelter, a space, a safe place for growing,
for everyone born, a star overhead,
and God will delight when we are creators
of justice and joy, compassion and peace:
yes, God will delight when we are creators
of justice, justice and joy!
For woman and man, a place at the table,
revising the roles, deciding the share,
with wisdom and grace, dividing the power,
for woman and man, a system that’s fair,
and God will delight when we are creators
of justice and joy, compassion and peace:
yes, God will delight when we are creators
of justice, justice and joy!
For young and for old, a place at the table,
a voice to be heard, a part in the song,
the hands of a child in hands that are wrinkled,
for young and for old, the right to belong,
and God will delight when we are creators
of justice and joy, compassion and peace:
yes, God will delight when we are creators
of justice, justice and joy!
For just and unjust, a place at the table,
abuser, abused, with need to forgive,
in anger, in hurt, a mindset of mercy,
for just and unjust, a new way to live,
and God will delight when we are creators
of justice and joy, compassion and peace:
yes, God will delight when we are creators
of justice, justice and joy!
For everyone born, a place at the table,
to live without fear, and simply to be,
to work, to speak out, to witness and worship,
for everyone born, the right to be free,
and God will delight when we are creators
of justice and joy, compassion and peace:
yes, God will delight when we are creators
of justice, justice and joy!
Shirley Erena Murray
Words © 1998 Hope Publishing Company

Happy weekend, dear friends!

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Martinmas Lantern Walk

A few days ago my "live-in gardener" and I were invited to
our grandson's pre-school to celebrate Martinmas.
I had never heard of it and was fascinated to learn more.
Below is the description I found online.
It was so special to walk with the children and their families
in the neighborhood where their school is located.
They had special songs to sing along the way,
then after the walk the teacher had a puppet show for them.
They, along with some parents, wore the gnome hats and beards
and carried paper lanterns.
Oh what we learn through our grandchildren.
It was special indeed.

"Martinmas marks the burial of St Martin of Tours (316-397 AD).    St. Martin may be well-known for his compassionate gesture of sharing his cloak with a beggar.  This charitable gesture is at the heart of this festival for many Waldorf schools, who hold coat drives and other charitable drives around this festival.
This festival is the middle point between Michaelmas and Christmas; the light of Martinmas fortifies our souls for the dark winter and prepares us for the birth of Christ.  One symbol of this is working with light from lanterns in the traditional Lantern Walk."  from The Parenting Passageway