Welcome friends...thanks for coming by. We're seeking beauty in all of creation... in our faith and our families; our art and our music; our crafts and kitchens, and even in our own backyard. We'll share a poem or a recipe, a picture or a memory; maybe a dream of how we wish our life could be. And though we acknowledge that the world can be harsh, we're keeping it pleasant in our little corner; endeavoring to keep the words from the Book of all Books: ...Whatsoever things are lovely; think on these things.

I so enjoy hearing from you...so leave me a comment; it'll make my day!

Photo: Bee and thistle: Taken high in the Cascade Mountains where there is a bee buzzing on every thistle. by Debora Rorvig

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

What to Keep and What to Eliminate at Christmas

I've been a little preoccupied these days. Hubby bought me a shiny new toy for my birthday...a SLR camera...a big girl toy! So I've been pouring over manuals and websites and tutorials, learning all about shutter speeds and aperatures and such. Boy, it's a lot to learn, but it will be so much fun! Remember those beautiful wreathes that Starbucks had a couple of years ago...the ones with the balls that look like yarn on them? One of my sons worked for them back then, and when he heard me raving about how beautiful the wreathes were, one magically appeared on my porch! The photo above is a close up of that wreath. Love that wreath!

I haven't even really decorated for Christmas...just a few favorite things in the family room; the place where we spend most of our time. As you can see, it's pretty casual. I don't think I'll ever be a fancy girl. Things always turn out this way for me...homey.

A few winters ago we spent a few days after Christmas at Harrison Hot Springs in British Columbia. We love it there...that's where we spent our honeymoon eons ago. Well, not too far from Harrison is a little town called Harrison Mills. It's situated on the river. It's not really a town. More like a whistle-stop. One of the residents there has a quaint little Christmas shop in a cabin next to her home. That's where this little snowman came from. He reminds me of so many happy times spent at Harrison.

I was messing with lighting on this photo. Don't you love those newfangled battery operated candles? I can now 'burn' candles all over the house without having to breathe in the smoke, which my nosey finds irritating.
This is a closeup of a Christmas pillow that my mom made. She passed away a few years ago, so you can just imagine what this pillow means to me. For the first 12 years of her life, back in the early 1900's Mom was raised on a farm back in Michigan. She used to tell me stories of skating on ponds, skiing on home-made skis made from barrel staves, and riding to school in the winter on the neighbors horse-drawn sleigh. I imagine that she dreamed of those childhood days as she stitched this scene.

Yep, it's fake. I love real poinsettias, but our new puppy dog might decide to munch on a leaf. And that would not make for a Merry Christmas! This year the flowers will be fake and the tree will sit atop the fireplace, 'cause we love our puppy more than our traditions. ( Hmmm, guess I'd better be a little pickier about my subjects with this new camera...just look at that thread on the flower petal. You can see that I'm a rank amateur!)

Oh well, it's all a learning process, isn't it?

On a personal note, I'm really forcing myself to scale back this year.  We're doing some traveling over the holidays, so the grandkids are likely to find checks in their stockings. I'm considering not sending out Christmas cards, and I probably won't make the usual iced sugar cookies. I'm not channelling Ebenezer Scrooge, but this year, I want to get out of the house and see people. Go to concerts. Look at lights. I'm attempting to see what Christmas would be like without all of the self-imposed obligations. Of course we'll keep the most important traditions...but honestly, how many things do you at Christmas that have become burdens? I'm not asking hypothetically, I'd really like to know...are there things you plan to eliminate from the holidays this year? Things you started to do years ago, but maybe are no longer important to you or your family?


jojo said...

going to simplify the holidays this year. It's just how my life is evolving right now...less, less, less and simple, natural and organic. I gave the kids all their ornaments from years gone by and just put a few decorations around the house. If they weren't coming over for Eve I don't think I would even bother with the tree. I want to go back to simplier times and remember the reason I celebrate Christmas.

farmlady said...

Less is better when it comes to the Holidays. I use to decorate every nook and cranny. I use to bake for weeks before.
Now, I have one small tree and a few favorite decorations. I make two or three favorite cookies and don't go shopping for gifts until I actually have something in mind.(This avoids impulse buying.)
I play old Christmas songs while I write to friends. I only send Christmas card to folks that I really care about and they have short notes in them. The days of sending 50 cards to everyone we know are over. I also refused to send a "form" letter to anyone.
Every Christmas I reexamine my reason for celebrating this holiday, when I have so many doubts about it's origin. I keep trying to understand why I can't let go of this special, wonderous feeling I get each year. God must be trying to tell me something and I try to listen.
That's all... just listen. Don't let the other things get in the way.

ellen b. said...

Love the pillow your mom made...what a treasure. I'm having a scaled down Christmas this year. I'm still waiting to see what will get done once I'm back from North Carolina. I like your goals this year, to see lights, people and going to concerts! Yippee for your new camera!

Anya said...

Thank you very much for reading my blog and dropping a note. I also find your blog interesting and I will read as much as I can whenever I have some free time.


Linda O'Connell said...

Deobora, you bring to mind all of the rushing about and overdoing it at this time of year. It would be nice to scale back and relax. i think I will forego the cards...but not the cookie baking.

allisamazing said...

Your throw and pillow are beautiful and your little snowman is so cute. I have become your newest follower. Thanks for sharing your pictures :)


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