Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Happy New Year!


"A happy New Year! Grant that I

May bring no tear to any eye

When this New Year in time shall end

Let it be said I've played the friend,

Have lived and loved and labored here,

And made of it a happy year."

~Edgar Guest

Happy 2011!

♥ Vicki

Friday, December 24, 2010

In a pickle...


Another family holiday tradition that we enjoy...
the pickle gift!

According to one website,
“A very old Christmas Eve tradition in Germany was to hide a pickle {ornament} deep in the branches of the family Christmas Tree. The parents hung the pickle last after all the other ornaments were in place. In the morning they knew the most observant child would receive an extra gift from St. Nicholas. The first adult who finds the pickle traditionally gets good luck for the whole year.”

On Christmas morning, after all {but one} of our presents have been opened, the kids search the tree for the hidden glass pickle ornament. The lucky person that finds it gets to open the very last gift!

Merry Christmas to you and yours!!

♥ Vicki

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Hot Cocoa

Another annual family holiday tradition…
driving around to look at Christmas lights at night!

It started one year after we’d tucked the kids in their beds.
Shortly thereafter, my husband and I prepared hot cocoa {with marshmallows!}
and poured it into disposable lidded cups.
We then got the kids out of bed, bundled them up in blankets or coats {over their pj’s},
and put them in the car with their cups of cocoa.
Of course, the cat – much to her chagrin - had to come, too!
{It should be noted that the cat never enjoyed this particular tradition!}

We still do this as a family today.
It’s such fun oohing and aahing over light displays
while drinking hot cocoa and singing Christmas carols in your jammies!

Here's a cocoa recipe to make for your family or to share with friends:

Hot Cocoa Mix
2 cups nonfat dry milk powder
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa
1/2 cup mini semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup powdered nondairy creamer
1/8 teaspoon salt

Measure ingredients into a mixing bowl and whisk until evenly blended.
Store mix in a tightly covered container. Makes about 4 cups of mix.
Spoon 3-4 heaping tablespoons of cocoa mix into a mug. Add boiling water and stir.

Cheers! 
♥ Vicki

Friday, December 17, 2010

Secret Ingredient


I baked cookies yesterday.
Tollhouse and snickerdoodles ... yummy!

My husband came home from work,
grabbed a couple of freshly-baked snickerdoodles,
and
proceeded to read the day's mail {which included Christmas cards}.

I mentioned that he had glitter on his face.
He held up a snickerdoodle and said,
"Do you put glitter in these?!"

{When I stopped rolling on the floor laughing} I assured him that I don't, typically, use glitter when baking!
The glitter was from my sister's Christmas card!

I hope you laugh out loud today!!  : )
♥ Vicki

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

I feel like a kid...


...in a candy shop during this time of year!
So much *eye candy* to see (decorations, lights, tinsel, and trim) ...
yummy things to buy (gifts and stocking stuffers) ...
and sweet treats to eat (cookies, candies, pies, and holiday meal favorites)!

Isn't it the MOST wonderful time of the year?!


♥ Vicki

Monday, December 13, 2010

I'll have a blue Christmas...


My salt glaze stoneware Santas gather in my living room.



♥ Vicki

Sunday, December 12, 2010

And the winner is...


My elf, Stanley, helped me prepare the giveaway entries.


He stuffed them in my hat...


and drew a winner!


Congratulations, Susan (Clucklebees) !!
Please contact me with your address so that I can send your prize on her merry way!

Thank you - to each and every one of you who entered - for your kind words and comments!
I had a lot of fun with this giveaway ... and I only wish I had several more *Sugared Snowmen* to go around!

Holiday Hugs & Mistletoe Kisses,
Vicki

Saturday, December 11, 2010

The Man of the Hour!


Santa Claus!
The Santa pictured above is one of my favorites...
probably because he holds an antique toy sewing machine.
 

My husband and I have collected Santas for more than 25 years.
Our collection includes different shapes and sizes made from cloth, clay, wood, resin, glass, a Coke bottle...


...and, of course, gourds!
My mom gave me this Santa a long, long time ago.
It is my absolute favorite!!

Do you have a favorite Christmas collection?

♥ Vicki

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Shiny and Brite


I collect vintage glass ornaments.
At Christmastime, I display them on a tree ... tuck them in wooden shoes ... 
arrange them in bowls with dried evergreens ... and hang them from a chandelier.

 

There is something endearing about these colorful and fragile mercury glass globes.
I love the patina ... the signs of wear ... and the history behind them.


They once graced a family's Christmas tree.
Youngsters gazed upon these ornaments with magical fascination.
They were brought out - year after year - and lovingly hung on the tree
... and after the holidays, carefully packed away and stored in the attic.

They witnessed a couple's first Christmas...
new babies...
toddlers who were more fascinated with a box than the gift inside...
children who anticipated Santa's annual visit with excitement...
and family gatherings.
They reflected happiness and smiles ...
joy and laughter ...
and the beauty of the season!


May your days be merry {shiny} and bright!

♥ Vicki

Monday, December 6, 2010

Happy St. Nicholas Day!


I love family traditions!
We celebrate Saint Nicholas Day every year on December 6th.
It’s, in part, an ode to our European ancestry … 
but the fact that one of my kids is named Nicholas really sealed the deal!
On the eve of Saint Nicholas Day, the kids always put their shoes outside their bedroom doors.
(They used their own shoes until Grandma and Grandpa gave us a pair of
wooden shoes that they brought back from a trip to Europe one year.)
In the morning, the kids would wake to find their shoes filled with goodies
including chocolate coins, an orange,
and a box of Pocky (to remind the kids of the years we lived in Japan!).



As you can probably tell, I love to incoporate
vintage wooden shoes in my holiday decorating, too! 

Happy St. Nicholas Day!

Make warm memories!
♥ Vicki




Sunday, December 5, 2010

All Right!


Those of you who've followed my blog for a while might remember
the vintage All Detergent bucket that I found several months ago.
I filled it with geraniums this summer ...
but the real reason I bought it was to incorporate it into my holiday decor.
It's perfect for displaying my laundry room Christmas tree.
Yes, Virginia, I do have a Christmas tree in my laundry room!
I put clear glass ornaments on the tree to resemble soap bubbles!
It makes me smile when I have to do laundry ...
and that's a good thing.

Hope your day is filled with smiles, too!

♥ Vicki

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Winter Giveaway!!

It’s December 1st!
And what better way to kick off the holiday season than by hosting a giveaway?
Enter to win this one-of-a-kind *Sugared Snowman*!
Tucked in a vintage silver cup, she measures almost 5" tall.
I embellished her with a vintage button and antique lace!

To enter:
To be entered in the drawing once, leave a comment on this post.
For an additional entry, become a follower of this blog!
   (Already a follower? Let me know so that I can give you credit.)
And finally, earn 2 extra entries for posting this giveaway on
   your blog or Facebook page along with a link back to this blog!!
 
Last day to enter is December 11th.
I will draw one lucky winner on December 12th!

Good luck and have fun!
♥ Vicki

Happy December!

I got my wish!
Allow me to introduce Stanley.

Actually, Stanley is an old family friend. He arrived today…right on schedule.
I found him – happy as can be – sitting in our Christmas tree when I woke up this morning!
That’s exactly how he has made his grand entrance every December 1st for years and years!
You see … Stanley is our Family Elf.
He is sent by Santa Claus to keep an eye on us during the month of December.
He appears in a different location every day.
He takes meticulous notes and reports back to the Big Guy on Christmas Eve.
My children are grown, but they still have fun hunting for Stanley!
You never know where he will turn up!!
If you haven’t made your bed … you’ll probably find Stanley sitting on your bed post.
He’s been spotted peeking out of baskets … and hanging upside down from light fixtures!
He’s a silly little elf, but I can’t imagine a Christmas without experiencing Stanley’s shenanigans.

Happy December to you and yours!
Make warm memories!!

♥ Vicki