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The ordinary arts we practice every day at home are of more importance to the soul than their simplicity might suggest ~ Sir Thomas Moore ~

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Thursday, November 28, 2013

Thankful {things I love} Thursday ...

The magic
of the first snow of the Season ...
my little
frosted  garden ...
and fellow snow lover Archer :-)
enjoying every tiny flake that fell.
Sending Thanksgiving Wishes
to our American friends today

Monday, November 25, 2013

A Vintage Christmas ♥ Comfort & Joy #2 ...

~Message in a Bottle~
It's all about tradition at home during the Holidays.
We are creatures of habit here & take comfort & joy in the special little things that we enjoy just at Christmas time. 

Chocolate Advent calendars are waiting in the pantry for December 1st.
Next to the Advent calendars are containers of mixed fruits and peels and nuts.  It is time to make the Christmas cake & English pud.
Everyone has their own special Christmas baked treat.

Today I'll share another one of our traditions 
 'message in a bottle'.
***
You will need:
Wine bottle - washed and dried well
{save the bottle from a special occasion during the year specifically for this}
Paper of your choice {Christmas wrap, music paper, book pages}
ribbon/twine
nest
bird
tag
When you have a quiet moment to sit and relax after all the festivities, have everyone in your family write a note.
A message of thanks, and gratefulness for the year that is ending, a message of hope and dreams and wishes for the New Year approaching. Something they wish to reflect upon, embrace, pray on.
Roll up the note and place in a decorative piece of paper to keep private.  This is a great way to re-use Christmas wrap, or music paper, book pages from a damaged book etc ...
Roll the two together & tie with a small piece of twine. Add your name to the outside  and place in bottle.
Once everyone has written their notes, you can now seal & decorate your bottle.
I like to place a small decorative nest on top with a sweet tiny bird.
Stamp the year on a tag and attach with ribbon.
Store your Messages in a Bottle with your Christmas decorations.
Next year, when it's time to decorate again,
 enjoy opening and reading your note :}
The rooms were very still
while the pages
were softly turned
and the Winter sunshine
crept in
to touch the bright heads
and serious faces
with a
Christmas greeting
~Louisa May Alcott~

Friday, November 22, 2013

A Vintage Christmas ♥Comfort & Joy {#1} ...

It's that time of year ...
so many ideas floating around in my head... scraps of paper cover my desk with quickly jotted down thoughts & sketches of what I want to create, make & bake :-)
while the weeks in November onward seem to fly by!
A chronic pain flair up & migraine took up most of this week.
I need to remember the importance of PACING.
I started on some felt stuffed foxes {so cute}
and some felt Christmas ornaments to send to friends ...
and of course ~ coffee stained tags to attach to gifts
as well as hang outdoors.
This years tags took on the look of aged leather :-D
To make the tags:
You will need ~ card stock, strong coffee solution, hole punch, stamps & ink, twine.
***
  cut up card stock - 2 1/2 " x 5"
  clip the two top sides 1/2" down
 {you could use a shipping tag as a template if you have one}
using a hole punch, make a hole along the top for attaching twine later
soak tags in a strong coffee solution
{ I roll the paper tags from the bottom up, and gently scrunch them at this point to give them an aged appearance once dried}
Place on parchment lined cookie sheets in a pre-heated oven 200 degrees for 10 minutes.
Using your favourite stamps ~ add Christmas sentiments to your tags.
Attach bakers twine  & tie on to brown paper wrapped packages for a lovely organic, natural look.
As well as parcels, I hang these tags on our mailbox, lanterns, "bird tree" outside, wreaths,
turn them into stocking name tags, Christmas cookie jar labels ... the uses are endless.

Over the next few weeks leading up to Christmas, I'll share some of the things I love to make each year to decorate my home & give as gifts. 
Homemade wrapping ♥ kissing ball♥ candle cases♥ advent♥ picture easels♥ photo frames♥
~xo~
~A Vintage Christmas♥ Comfort & Joy~

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Sunday Serenity...

On our walk today we came across so many nests.
I love to look at them, up close, where you can really appreciate all the fine detail.
It rained a little early in the morning which made the woods smell amazing
under the crunch of the fallen leaves.
Only a few leaves remained on the trees we passed.
Dry and crisp
they were still beautiful ♥
Nests built by the waters edge...
and high up in treetops...
and gorgeous
mossy
fallen tree limbs ...
I came home with pockets filled with nature's gifts that I will use to create Christmas gifts...
heart shaped stones {my grandson started me on this collection ... now I find them on nearly every walk}
birch bark {to wrap around candles}
miniature pine cones {to create Christmas picture frames}
twigs {for picture frames & twig stars}
Walk
as if
you are kissing the Earth
with
your feet
~Thich Nhat Hanh~

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

a wednesday walk ...

Good Morning ♥
Lots of sunshine ... but it is COLD.
Archer & I took a little walk around the yard to see if there was anything left to tidy up.
We will soon start decorating for the Holidays.
I thought the leaves in the frozen bird bath
looked like stained glass ♥
Can you spot the heart shaped leaf?
Once the leaves of the honeysuckle had all blown away, we were able to safely remove the nest the Robins had made.
It now sits on a bench on the front porch.
When cleaning up the garden for Winter
we leave anything that can provide food and/or shelter for the birds.
The berries are a favourite picking spot.
Our old wooden wheelbarrow has had all the Thanksgiving & Halloween decorations removed & is ready to be decorated for Christmas ...
There's
 a crack
in
everything.
That's
how
the light
gets
in.
~Leonard Cohen~
 

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Texture Tuesday ...

~MeSsY Nest~
Texture: Kim Klassen : poetic
***
spotted this messy nest on one of our walks
Far from the city's dust and heat
I get but sounds and odors sweet
Who can wonder I love to stay
Week after week here hidden away
In this sly nook that I love the best
This little brown house
like a ground-birds nest.
~Ella Wheeler Wilcox~
 
the other morning while making tea, I heard that horrible crash against the dining room window...
you know that a poor bird has hit it & go running to make sure it is o.k.
I found this sweet little wren - toppled over, eyes closed, head first on the window ledge.
I kept watch over him and a few minutes later he jumped to his feet - I'm not sure who was more startled, him or me :-)  He stayed on the ledge for about another 5 minutes or so still getting his bearings and then flew away ♥
***
Linking with Texture Tuesday.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Texture Tuesdays ...

~As Spirit Directs~
using
Kim Klassen Texture: Stay
***
Spotted this beautiful branch while walking with Archer.
If he's off-leash, I normally let him lead the way.
Other times,  like in this case, Nature seemed to point the way ♥
All the energy
of the Universe
is mine
to use
as Spirit
directs
~Jonathan Lockwood Huie~
***
Linking with Texture Tuesdays today.

Monday, November 4, 2013

November walk ...

Spotted this sweet black capped chickadee
enjoying sunflower seeds
while walking towards our car ...
we were at the apple orchard after our Sunday hike with Archer ...
 
I see the potential for lots of pumpkin pies :-)
Now that Thanksgiving AND Halloween have passed
I am thinking Christmas ♥
how beautiful is this sunflower head
full of seeds
spotted this nest
of yarn
and graceful beauty