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Friday, December 31, 2010

An Invitation

Come for a visit

Your cottage is ready

We can paint, we can cook, we can bake,
We can go for long walks,
We can drink a glass or two of champagne
You have kept me entertained, 
I have shed a few tears, not many;  You have made me think
And you have made me laugh, you have given me great ideas
And for all those reason, I thank you

Happy New Year, my dear blogging friends

Love, Gina

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

I thought I could do without

The good things in Life

Original Danziger Goldwasser
with 22k gold flakes

A little Goldwasser Liquer goes into my Stollen

And so does Marzipan... added to one side

It is snowing outside

The dough has to rise twice, I can go out and play in the snow

And I can play some more

I wonder what our friends are doing at the "Geyerhof" in Soprabolzano

I baked enough to share with you


Monday, December 27, 2010

So here is what I think

I have seen similar figures in the Cairo Museum in Egypt

Are these figures very old?

Are these figures from the Orient?

Maybe I don't need to know

But now that I have so many blogging friends who are experts in antiques....

Maybe you, my dear friends, have an answer.  I purchased these figures  from an elderly couple who came into a consignment shop in Santa Barbara

Those who have seen these figures admire them but no one knows anything about them.



Sunday, December 26, 2010

The Day after Christmas

Yearning for Peace

Bearing the Olive Branch

Offering the Olive branch with pure thought

The secret is knowledge

Virgil (70-10BC)

High on the stern Aeneas his stand,
And held a branch of olive in his hand,
While thus he spoke: "The Phrygians' arms you see,
Expelled from Troy, provoked in Italy
By Latian foes, with war unjustly made;
At first affianced, and at last betrayed.
This message bear: The Trojans and their chief
Bring holy peace, and beg the King's relief."


Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas

To your family we send our warmest wishes of friendship and love

May the beauty of Christmas fill your heart
today and always

Gene and Gina

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Too much is not enough

That's my Motto and I'm sticking to it

It said so on the inside of a pair of shoes I owned

The shoes are long gone but the Motto has stuck

Merry Christmas


Thursday, December 16, 2010

A Promise is a Promise

This time of year it is a luxury to sit down and paint

There is so much to do

But I promised to deliver this hand painted Ceramic Mural before Christmas

My clients, from Illinois, will be moving into their new home on New Year's Day

The beginning

Ready to be glazed and fired in the kiln to 1800 degrees Fahrenheit

Just in time for Christmas

Merry Christmas


Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Georgianna "simply adored the little rocking horse"

This post is for my lovely friend Georgianna of

who commented on my blog

Georgianna "simply adored this little Rocking Horse"

How I acquired it ?

It came with an extra present

The Gentleman from,  Nuernberg, Germany,  who sold these wonderful and old wax ornaments to me was so happy that they were going to America that he gave me this little vase as a present. 

Those are the memories that make each and every one of our trips so very special

Do you have a favorite Christmas Ornament?

Merry Christmas


The well intentioned Christmas Gift

What would he like for Christmas?
Repost from 2010

He might like a Pocket Watch

A watch like this one; made in 1857 by a George R. Frodsham, Greys In Road, London, England

It is replete with golden chain, watch fob and 2 keys
The watch is chain driven, not spring driven as most watches are

A key winds the pocket watch from the back
And then, one day, the watch stopped working

We took it to the best Jewellers.  None could fix it because it is chain driven.  On our trip to Switzerland the watchmaker said that he would try.  He placed it in his vault and we went off to Egypt.  Upon our return, we picked up our watch.  He was sorry but he couldn't fix it.  Why not take it to England, he suggested.

But wait, a qualified person was found in Boston, USA

Yes, he would try.  After all, he was an Englishman and he was a certified member of the "Jewellers Board of Trade". 

An appraisal of said pocket watch followed by said person, hereafter unnamed.  Appraisal $20,000.00  Cost to repair, $3,500.00.   Return of our watch, NOT REPAIRED $300.00. 

What would you have done?

The person received $3,500.00 from us and we received our gold pocket watch, repaired.

A year later, while on a visit to London, we stopped in at Christie's Auction House, King Street, St. James, London. 

We were ushered into a private office.  An expert in solid gold pocket watches admired our watch.  We then showed him our certified appraisal.  The expert was speechless.  Excused himself to confer with one of his colleagues.  

We were left alone in the office.  Were we going to be wealthy?
Were we going to be arrested?  

The two charming gentlemen were shaking their heads.  Shaking their heads in disbelief at the $3,500.00 repair fee.  Christie's had recently repaired the "Tower of London" clock for 80 pounds,  about $120 US dollars at the time.  

They were incredulous that a reputable Jeweller and one of their own countrymen had taken advantage of us.

Christie's provided us with a Letter stating:  "We refer to our meeting yesterday and now confirm that your watch is a gold hunter lever pocket watch with Liverpool jewelling numbered to movement and case 11927 by George R. Frodsman, Greys In Road, London." 

"We would estimate this watch to fetch 300 to 500 English Pounds in auction and hope this has been of assistance."


Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Old and new friends...my Christmas Tree Ornaments

They all have stories to tell

And I remember them all

They come from many places

But our Christmas Tree comes from the mountains by our house

My sweet friend Helen, gave me many beautiful ornaments

This little fellow is only an inch tall, he is from East Germany, the place where I grew up

A sweet bird, another gift from my dear friend Helen

One of many ornaments from the Nutcracker Ballet series

I love heart ornaments on our tree, any kind of heart

Hand painted on a wintry afternoon

Thin paper glued onto clear glass balls

More paper napkins glued and varnished

A cornucopia, a symbol of abundance

More hearts, more Love

From the Christkindles Markt on a snowy afternoon in  Nuernberg

Merry Christmas my dear blogging Friends


Sunday, December 12, 2010

Of Mice and Men and my Cymbidium Orchids

This time of year my Cymbidium Orchids start blooming ... just when I need them

The first year my orchid had 3 flower spikes

The following year my Cymbidium had 6 spikes

In the summer I park my orchids outside, behind the garage, in partial shade.   I leave them outside until the first light frost in late September/early October.  (A light frost will set flower spikes) 

Last year, just about this time of year, 16 glorious flower spikes appeared all at once

 And this year I have pots of Paperwhites blooming,  MICE ATE THE ROOTS OF MY CYMBIDIUM ORCHIDS