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Saturday, December 31, 2011

It has all been said








What is left is to say Thank You


An oversized Thank You






A Thank You as big as this Jeroboam bottle of Champagne.





You have brought the world to me.






For that and so much more, I thank you from the bottom of my heart.




I'm putting on my party dress and we will bring in the New Year with friends and share that giant bottle of champagne.

Happy New Year my dear Blogging Friends.

I will drink a toast to you and wish you the best of what this great world of ours has to offer. 


Gina





Wednesday, December 28, 2011

I bet you thought I was a Spring Chicken






Not so!

We are celebrating our 48th Wedding Anniversary today.


Gene and Gina





Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Tiles don't have to be square



Tiles don't have to be rectangular






Tiles can be long and skinny as in these hand painted Border Tiles.





In my kitchen they're all mixed up.






Each Tile is hand painted and no two are alike.





I've painted them a light creamy yellow.





Even corner tiles get special attention.



What have you been doing in these in-between holidays days?


Gina






Sunday, December 25, 2011

Warmest Greetings to you on this Christmas Morning






I'm grateful for your friendship, your visits and your comments.






It makes me happy to have so many wonderful friends from near and from the far corners of the world.

Merry Christmas and Warmest Wishes to each and everyone of you.


Gina



Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas to You and Yours





I love pink Poinsettias.
They must be pink, not red, not white, nor any other color. 





When I was a very young woman I worked in an office with a lot of other young women.

To this office an elegant lady came.  She wore designer suits and she wore an enormous solitaire diamond ring.

I will always remember what she told us.

"I wish that all of you could have such a diamond."





This 64 carat Citrine was set into gold by Norman Berndt, a well known Jeweler.
It used to be a ring.  I thought that it was too large. so I had it made into a pendant.



I wish for you all manner of wealth, but most of all I wish you health and happiness.

May all your wishes come true.

Merry Christmas my dear Blogging Friends.

Gina



 

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Toile de Jouy paper ribbon



Print it yourself, it's easy.



Why not wrap your presents with inexpensive brown paper and decorate with 6 inch wide Toile de jouy Paper Ribbons.
Paper Ribbons you have painted yourself.




Print General Purpose Masking Paper, 180 feet for under $2, with rubber stamps.
(I used rubber stamps from "Rubber Stampede")





 As pretty as any 18th c. French Toile de jouy Fabric.



Happy wrapping and happy gifting
my dear Blogging Friends.

Gina





Sunday, December 18, 2011

Merry Cristmas Tree



Every year, just before Christmas, we plan a picnic with our Friends, Christine and Steven, and cut our Christmas Trees.





From the quiet forest near our house.





Not until we placed our tree in its usual spot did we notice the many missing  branches.



Not even my largest ornaments will cover the holes.




I'm actually happy that the best trees are still in my mountains.

Only next year we'll pick our tree AFTER the Salty Dogs.


Merry Christmas my dear Blogging Friends.

Gina

P. S. By the way, Christine and Steven have a perfectly beautiful Christmas Tree.





Saturday, December 17, 2011

Too much is not enough Part II


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 once owned.

The shoes are long gone but the Motto has stuck.

Happy Christmas decorating my dear Blogging Friends

Gina





Friday, December 16, 2011

The Christmas Gift


What would he like for Christmas?
Repost from Christmas 2010



He might like a Pocket Watch.







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






It is replete with golden chain, watch fob and 2 keys.
Most watches are spring driven.  This watch is chain driven.









A key winds the pocket watch.
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 very 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, hereinafter 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 his office for a very long time.  Were we going to be wealthy?


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 (under $1,000) English Pounds at auction and hope this has been of assistance."



                       Have a great weekend my dear Blogging Friends.

Gina







Monday, December 12, 2011

Instant Gratification






Or Almost




Paperwhites for Christmas.






In the Spring I plant Sunflower seeds and watch them grow.






 In Winter I plant Paperwhites and watch them grow.





And Grow.





And grow some more.





I can bring in Nasturtiums from my little Greenhouse.





And my Orchids are throwing new Spikes.





Winter is not so bad after all in Utah.

Don't worry, don't fret, it'll all get done.

Have a great week my dear Blogging Friends.

Gina







Sunday, December 11, 2011

Last minute Christmas Presents




Share a small and elegant piece of history
available in my Etsy shop.



A very special Christmas gift,
A lace handkerchief in excellent vintage condition.





It comes with its own little cotton gift bag.



Delivered to you before Christmas.






They're all different, all ten of them.




 Lace Handkerchiefs available in my Etsy Shop.


Gina




Wednesday, December 7, 2011

When you see an orange that looks like this...







You know that I am baking my Mother's decadent Christmas butter cookies.






That's the easy part.  Hiding them from myself is the difficult part.






Same recipe (follows), only stack 2 cookies together.





Fill center of cookies with home made preserves, then bake.


 

Recipe
Cream together 1 cup unsalted butter
and 2/3 cup sugar
Beat in 1 egg,
1tsp vanilla, pinch of salt,
1 Tb orange rind,
1 Tb fresh lemon juice
Add 2 and 1/2 cups of sifted flour
Mix until well blended
spoon onto cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees for 10 to 12 minutes or until lightly browned
OR
Cool (not chill) dough for 1 hour
Cut out 2 cookie shapes, same size, cut center hole into one cookie
stack and fill with preserves
Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until barely colored at 350 degrees.
Makes about 2 dozen cookies.

Happy baking, my dear Blogging Friends.

Gina


 
 

Monday, December 5, 2011

Pomanders and much more...



Pomanders are pretty and  fill the home with fragrances of Christmas.






Pierce oranges with knitting needles first, then insert cloves.  Makes for quick and easy work.





Look what pretty dried roses. They will keep you happy all winter long.





 Roses are the easiest flowers to dry.  To ensure that they keep their vibrant colors place roses in a little water (only the stems not the rose heads) the night before.  The next day is when they go into a container. Slowly pour sand over the flowers until they are fully covered.  Place in dry and warm place for a week.  Pour sand off slowly. 





Our friends Christine and Steven drying Hollyhocks for the first time using sand from the Home Improvement store.  It is less expensive than the white silica type and actually gives better results. 




Can you tell which Hollyhocks have been dried?  It's those in the top left corner. Make sure that the sand is also dry or flowers will turn brown.





Dried Hollyhocks look fragile, they are actually quite sturdy.  You can glue them into Christmas wreaths.  But remember that they must be kept inside.




Pansies dry quickly and easily in sand.  However, these pansies, along with all the other little flowers, have been pressed in old books.  No need for a fancy flower press.





Think of all the special Christmas decorations you can make yourself. 






For a little extra inspiration you might want to order (Amazon) this very special book by Barbara Milo Ohrbach entitled "The Scented Room".  It contains easy-to-follow instructions.  Ms. Ohrbach has written several other fine books but this one remains my favorite.






You will find easy instructions and recipes for Floral Water, Wet and Dry Potpourri, Lavender Bottles, Scented Pillows, Pomanders, Wreaths and much more.  My personal favorites are the sachets made from antique floral ribbons. 

Happy creating, my dear Blogging Friends

Gina