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Friday, November 29, 2013

a Christmas apron and memories

Do you wear an apron?  I do sometimes if I think things might get messy while cooking or baking.
I wear a full bib apron that is a green and yellow plaid.  Utilitarian.

This pretty red and white organza apron was my dear mother's.
I can see her wearing it to serve dinner in the dining room at Christmas.  Maybe she only did it once or twice.  And we rarely ate in the dining room…..it was reserved for special occasions and guests.  Our meals were in our big kitchen at an old farmhouse table with yellow vinyl-upholstered chrome chairs around it.  I vaguely remember that we had black wood kitchen chairs before that.

No, we didn't live in the country.  We lived in an upstairs flat in the city.  The kitchen was large but, having been built in the 1930's, was not very modern.  The sink was a big white 2 basin porcelain one set on a cream shaker style wood cabinet base.  No counter top on either side.   Mum had an old commode dresser on the right and one of those 2 shelved 'modern' white enamel tables on the other side.  To the left of that was our washing machine.  No clothes dryer.  We went out to the back porch window and hung the clothes on the clothes line.

The cabinets were on the adjacent wall.  About 7 feet of counter and cabinets - cream shaker style wood - top and bottom, with black knobs and the drawers in the base had metal cup pulls.  The fridge was to the left of the cupboards.  The stove was natural gas and was opposite the cabinets and next to the kitchen table.  Needless to say it was a bit crowded.  Every inch was used up.

Behind the table, on the wall, was a large chalkboard where we would draw.  Also a large map of either Canada or the world was above that.  We did our lessons and homework, coloured and played games at that kitchen table.  We had no family room and weren't allowed to play in the living room.  We could play in our bedrooms and down in the dark basement 2 flights down, where Mum set up our toys and some furnishings.  We spent many hours down there in the winter months.  The furnace was there too.  

Well, I sure got side tracked didn't I?!  Back to the apron future.

I decided to hang the apron near the little red child's chair that holds the antique crock with a mini tree in it.
Just a little reminder of my mother who loved Christmas and enjoyed decorating for the season, and serving dinner with a pretty apron once in a while.  

It's a beautiful sunny but cold day here (-6C).  I cut some greens today and made a swag for the man door to the garage and one to hang on the mailbox.  The community Christmas tree lighting is tonight at the old school house.  We might go.

The community tree with an almost full moon in 2012.  No snow last year either.

I hope you have a wonderful weekend.



Wednesday, November 27, 2013

a deer herd, the weather, thrifty finds, and family

blurry photo through the window at dawn  

When I woke up and looked out yesterday morning I saw this sight.  There were about 18 - 20 deer on the hill.  And.  It's mating season.  There are 2 bucks up there.  You can see the big one, which is a 6 pointer, to the right of centre at the crest.  The other one has a smaller rack.  There are going to be a lot more deer come next spring I think.  You may recall I mentioned a hunter had been going up there and baiting the deer with apples.  He went up every day in the late afternoon but I don't think he got what he was looking for - the big buck.  The deer have been hiding quite well the past 3 weeks during deer hunting season and now they know it's safe so they've come out.   
{I think they have a secret spot where they hide, don't you?} 

Tuesday cleared off into a beautiful sunny day with no wind and much milder that it has been.  The calm before the storm.   You can see that the pond across the way is frozen.

By late afternoon it was starting to cloud over.  The 'storm' was starting to move in.

This morning we woke up to a bit of snow and freezing rain and fog.  Schools are closed due to the slippery roads.  The salt and sand trucks have made their first rounds of the season.  It's +2C and will go up to +13C (about 58 F) and we're going to get a lot of rain and wind starting this afternoon.  Just a plain nasty November day.  This storm is far reaching into Quebec and southeastern Ontario as well as down into the US and I know some are getting snow and ice as well as rain and wind.  Please be very careful if you have to be out and about.  

I was at the Bibles for Missions thrift store on Monday and found this vintage angel tree topper.  I always have a problem with tree toppers that won't sit on the little stems of green at the top and tilt (like this one is) or fall off.  Do you have that problem?  I have a lovely white snowflake that has white lights but it's too heavy.  Last year the top was bare.  This topper came from Zeller's, a Canadian department store that closed last year.  Target bought out some of the stores in Canada.  The original price sticker is on the box - $1.77.  I paid $2.00 for it.  Sorry about the blurred photo.  It was dusk and my camera is starting to die I think.  It's having a few issues.  :-(

I also found this pretty aqua vintage ornament at the store for $2.
I couldn't pass it up.  

We had a family photo shoot this summer when our daughter and her family were home.  I finally got some of the pictures printed off and framed.  I also had Christmas cards made with one of the photos.  It's the first time I'd done that.  Have you made Christmas cards of family photos before?  

Our beautiful children and grandchildren.
Son-in-law Matthew, daughter Jennifer, Murray, Me, son Mark
Ewan (3) and Eli (almost 16 months now).  Mark has since gotten engaged so we'll have a new addition to our family next August.
Another Jennifer!
Little Eli just started walking Monday evening.  I saw him on Skype yesterday and he is walking like a pro already.  It's like it just clicked in his head that he could do this.  So cute!!

Well that's what's going on here today.  Stay safe in the stormy weather.  We're staying put today.  :)
I would like to wish all my American readers and followers a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday.  I hope the weather doesn't hamper any efforts of family get togethers and that you all are safe.  Enjoy your family and friends and all the good food and good times, and be thankful for your blessings.

Blessings to you!


Monday, November 25, 2013

a wee Christmas tea break

I haven't joined Sandi for "Tea Time Tuesday" in a long while so after baking cookies this morning I thought I'd take a wee Christmas tea break and join the party.

I bought this Lennox Holiday mug at a box store in Bangor when we were there in September.  I've seen them before and always liked them so I bought just one to be my special Christmas mug.
I love the the embossed holly design as well as the green and red of the holly leaves and berries.  

My tea today is Twinings Christmas Tea which is a black tea with cinnamon and cloves.  Perfect for the holidays.

The cookies I made this morning are Soft Molasses Cookies.

Here is the recipe:

1 cup of packed brown sugar
3/4 cup shortening
1/4 cup molasses
1 egg
2 1/4 cups white all purpose flour
2 teaspoons of baking soda
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
1 teaspoon of ginger
1/4 teaspoon of salt
sugar or coloured sprinkles

Cream the sugar, shortening, molasses and egg in a large bowl.
Mix the dry ingredients in a smaller bowl then add to the larger mixture and blend well.
Take a teaspoon size ball of dough and roll it between your palms then lightly flatten it.  
Pour some of the sugar or sugar sprinkles into a shallow bowl or dish and press the ball of dough into it.  Place on a greased cookie sheet or one lined with parchment (which I use).  
Bake at 350 degrees for 8 - 9 minutes.
Yield 4 dozen.

These are really delicious and can be frozen too, so you can save them for Christmas and your guests!!

The plate is Cream Lace by Skye McGhie and it goes quite well with my Lennox mug I think.

I've got all my decorating done and our tree is up and decorated too.  On Sunday afternoon Murray helped me assemble it and put on the lights then I decorated it.  It took four hours to do it!
Here's a sneak peek.  {I'll share more with you soon}

I hope you will join us for Tea Time Tuesday
at Sandi's beautiful blog, Rose Chintz Cottage.

Have a great day!



Saturday, November 23, 2013

first snow

Friday  morning I awoke to this gorgeous sunrise.
When I checked my Facebook I noticed a friend posted her photo of the same sunrise.  I then posted mine and shortly after 3 other friends posted their photos.  It was an interesting perspective to see the different views of this gorgeous sunrise all within several kilometres of each other.

The day was sunny with clouds but the wind finally had ceased after blowing all week long.  I went to town and did a bit of Christmas shopping.  I found a lot of great sales going on as if it was 'Black Friday' or something.  Yes, we have Black Friday here now.  I think it's next Friday though.  The merchants are trying to keep the shoppers on this side of the border.  :)

We went out for supper last night at The Diplomat, a popular Chinese/Canadian restaurant in Fredericton.  It's always busy there and we don't go very often and last night it was so busy.  There wasn't any parking as the hotel next to it had an event going on as well.  Murray had to park on a side street.  We met up with friends and joined them for supper.  I had the No. 1 Chinese combo…. I ate half of it….way too much food.  

A robin visited our yard on Thursday.  Apparently there are many staying around this year as several friends have seen them.

This morning we woke up to our first snowfall.
Always pretty and magical.

It snowed for a couple of hours but melted in the above freezing temperatures.  It'll be all melted later.

This is already melted.  It was pretty while it lasted.

So, since we didn't get the outside Christmas lights up last weekend when it was 10 degrees Celsius we have to do it today….when it's 2 degrees and windy (very windy again!).  

We dug out the Christmas tree and decorations from under the stairs a few minutes ago.  I may tackle that later today.  I'm doing something different this year with burlap garland.  We'll see how that goes.

We also dug out some of the old vintage and antique dishes that I store there.  I think I'm going to sell them.  They are in boxes all the time and I have no place to display them. If I don't sell them I'll donate them to Kings Landing Historical Settlement.  They need to be in a safe place where they might be seen and appreciated.  (I'm not an ebay person as packaging and the cost of mailing is not worth it)  I hate to part with them but someday they will be gotten rid of by our kids.  We just can't keep everything.  What would you do with them?

Well, that's what we're up to today.  

Thanks for visiting and I'd like to welcome my new followers this week.  I appreciate each one of you.  Have a wonderful weekend!



Wednesday, November 20, 2013

candlelight dinner for one

Just because you're alone doesn't mean you can't enjoy your meals by candlelight.

With the days now dark at suppertime I often light candles on our dinner table just to make it cozy.  
My dearest has been away on a business trip this week since Sunday afternoon but that didn't stop me from enjoying a nice dinner with the candles lit.

I had the local evening news program on the TV and my new CL magazine at my side to enjoy.  :)

I cooked some salmon and potatoes and made a nice tossed salad.  The dark green blob is Million Dollar relish.  I don't usually eat that many potatoes at all!  I forgot and cooked too many.  :)
I love salmon and could eat it almost every day of the week.
I had enough left over to make a sandwich for supper tonight.

Do you like salmon or any other kind of fish?
We like haddock fillets too.

Murray arrives home this evening so I have to make an airport run.
He was in Newfoundland and the rain storm we got here on Monday turned into a snow storm that is to hit "the rock" (as Newfoundland is commonly known) this evening and tomorrow.  I'm so glad he got out this afternoon.  
Do you know where Newfoundland is?  No?

Well, it's a good sized island that kind of sits in off the coast of the provinces of Quebec, Nova Scotia (Cape Breton actually) and Prince Edward Island.  The Atlantic Ocean surrounds most of it.

Here is a link to a map of Newfoundland.

Newfoundland also has a large area of land on the mainland called Labrador which is part of the province and you can see it in the maps.  It's actually called Newfoundland and Labrador.  You can see how far it is from where we live in New Brunswick. 

There's a bit of eastern Canadian geography for you. 

Thank you all for your sweet comments on yesterday's Notecard Wednesday post.  I appreciate you all so much.

 I must run and eat my salmon sandwich and then head for the airport.  :)  I hope you have a nice cozy evening.  It's cold out there!



Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Note Card Wednesday

We have rolled around to the middle of the month and the third Wednesday which is the Note Card Wednesday at Vee's.

We choose 4 photos that would make great note cards and post them here.  There is a new rule this month and I think it's a great idea.  Vee would like us to make a 'box cover' photo as well, of the 4 notecards we chose.  Mine will be at the end of the post.

Here are my choices this month.  I love hydrangeas and our 'tree' is pretty huge so I pick them in the fall and dry them.  The basket ones are from the hydrangea tree and the other ones are one from the tree and one from the small Endless Blue shrub we have.

I think these cards will be suitable for many occasions.

I hope you will come over to Vee's and join in on the party.
There are always some really beautiful notecards from other bloggers.  

Have a great day!



Sunday, November 17, 2013

Friday's sunset and Sunday morning fog and reflections

The sunset on Friday afternoon was so pretty with it's soft peach and mauve colours.

To think I was missing all these glorious sunsets all these years before the wall of trees was removed.

Sunday morning.

We were on our way to church a bit later than normal this morning as Murray didn't have to play keyboard and the choir had the morning off.   He was driving and I took this photo through his side window with my iPhone.  That's why you see a reflection on the left side. ;)  The fog cloud was hanging over the Keswick River where it meets with the St. John River.  There was frost on everything before the sun melted it off.  

  The sun was so bright that I couldn't see what I was taking a photo of but I was pleased with the results. I lightened the photo up a bit so you could see more detail but that's it.

Another quick snap a few feet further.  I love the light and soft colours.

Along the St. John River.  I caught the guardrail in this one but didn't want to crop it as I'd lose some of the river.  

It's been sunny and mild and very calm here the past 2 days.

This is such a beautiful drive.  Right now the leaves are gone and we can see more of the river.  I'd love to be able to stop and take pictures in some of these spots but the side of the road is narrow and there are a lot of long grasses and brush in the way.  
I like the colours in this photo though, and the sun shining on the grass and melting frost on it in the foreground. 

Around 4:30, the clouds were rolling in from the west.  

We're in for a wet and windy day tomorrow from the storms that have created all the tornados and terrible damage across the US mid-west.  I hope you, my readers in that area, are safe.  

Have you had some beautiful November skies?

I hope you have a wonderful week ahead.  



Friday, November 15, 2013

the week that was

It's Friday.  That week sure went fast!

We had a long weekend just past with the Remembrance Day holiday on Monday so we were busy.  Saturday we went to town to the market but I didn't buy anything there.  And you saw that we went downtown to the shop Savour Decor in my last post.  By the way, thank you for all your kind comments on my friend Janice's store.  I think she would love it if each one of you would visit her shop.  If you're ever in my town I'll take you there personally.  :)

We stopped by the big box building store with the orange signs and they had all kinds of nice Christmas arrangements made from fresh greens for sale (above photo).   While I didn't have any birch sticks to use for my own arrangements, I did use some maple tree branches that had blown down this fall.  Whatever works.  ;)

I always do my own greenery arrangements with cuttings from our own trees, however, we cut down our huge white pine trees this summer so I have no pine.  I'll have to go to the back roads and find some maybe.  

This is one of my containers.  It has spruce, cedar, sedum blooms, red dogwood sticks and some faux berries from Dollarama.

Container # 2.

On the way to town we saw this unusual sight.

A Mobile Tim Horton's restaurant.
This popular Canadian coffee shop is being renovated so they brought in a portable one.  I've never seen one before.  Cool eh?

Speaking of 'cool'….

My favourite ice cream is in the store now.  Candy Cane with slivers of dark chocolate.  Yum.  I won't be buying any this year, unless I have a really weak moment, due to the possible gall bladder attack I had 2 weeks ago.  I haven't had ice cream for 2 weeks!  I know that doesn't sound so bad but when one has a cone of ice cream every other day…..well…..  Let's just say I quit cold turkey and I don't dare to taste it again!  It's been difficult as it was my comfort food or treat in the afternoon.  It's all good though ~ I've lost 4.5 pounds.  :)


I bought my Paperwhites and Amaryllis bulbs and will plant them today.  They should be blooming around Christmas time.  
Do you buy these bulbs to grow?  They are so fun to watch as they sprout, grow and bloom.

The skies are grey with some blue patches and the temperatures are going to be very mild for us this time of year at around 9 or 10 degrees Celsius.  


Ah, yes, I've been doing a bit of this all week.  Today I'll do more.
But no tree yet.  Although I've seen several up and lit already.
We'll put up our outdoor lights tomorrow as it will be a warm day for the task.

I hope you all have had a great week and I hope you have a really nice weekend.  

Blessings to you,


Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Christmas shopping

Are you ready for some Christmas shopping?

There is a beautiful little shop in downtown Fredericton called 
Savour Decor.  
Owner and personal friend, Janice, chooses beautiful home decor items, giftware and furnishings for her shop that will please everyone.

She has recently brought in some local re-purposed vintage furniture and some gorgeous bevelled glass topped tables with driftwood tree stump bases.

One of the glass topped tables laden with beautiful things for your home.  

A vintage china cabinet with a new paint job.  Isn't it pretty?

Don't you love this old wooden door with coat hooks on it?

I love these birch log tea light holders.

Do you see anything you like yet?
{the photographer is not for sale!}

The wood bench is made locally.  

I bought one of the little sparkly birds on this table, along with a few other items for gifts.

This is Janice. {Summer 2012}

And this is Savour Decor.

Savour Decor is located on Queen St. in downtown Fredericton across the street from City Hall which you can see reflected in the windows.

If you're ever in Fredericton be sure to drop in.  
Tell her Pam sent you.  ;)

Have a beautiful day.



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