Thursday, December 29, 2011

It's {Still} Christmastime At Our House

It seems to me that there are two main views about the week between Christmas and the New Year.  One that moves to take the tree down, put the presents away and get back to normal life on December 26, and the other that continues with the Christmas celebrations.  We are proud members of the second group here!  (Not that I have anything against the first group; to each their own!)

With our immediate family currently residing in four different states, we rarely spend the actual holiday under one roof, but do manage to gather during the week after the holiday.  With the mister confined to the house, we are hosting this year. We have a houseful of family, and it's so very fun and festive!

I've learned recently that in some other countries the day after Christmas is also considered a holiday.  I love that; I wish we did it here in the states!  Luckily, the company that the mister works for shuts down this week every year, so it is our annual built in vacation. 

Once it quiets down around here I will be working on my resolutions for the new year, as well as implementing some plans and changes I've been working on for a while now.  Exciting stuff!  But I am in no real hurry; the time will pass all to quickly.

How do you spend the time between Christmas and New Year's?  I would love to hear!

xoxo, Anita

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Santa Is Coming...

And I hope that he brings you every little thing that you wish for!


It's my favorite time in television right now; 24 hours of 'A Christmas Story' has just started on TBS!  I own the DVD, but there is something about being able to go from room to room and watch it continuously that adds to my general Christmas Eve/Christmas Day joy.

What is making you happy right now?  I would love to hear!

xoxo, Anita

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

My Very Favorite {Vintage} Christmas Decoration

Or, an entire post dedicated to a tray!

This plastic tray depicts the Twelve Days Of Christmas, and was made in 1954, as stamped on the back.

I'm not even sure how this particular item came into my possession!  I came across it going through boxes in my basement a few years ago, and fell in love with the cute kitsch-ness of it.

 Every once in a while when I am visiting with a friend or family member, they will hand me a box of "a few things I thought you would like".  (My passion for all things 'old' is no secret among those who know me!)  But I do wish I knew who saw this special item and thought of me, because I would love to tell them how well they nailed it. 

I display this treasure during the holiday season in my dining room; it's walls are almost the same shade of pink used in the tray!

Here are close ups of the twelve days ~

I hope that you are enjoying your Christmas week, dear friends!  It is going by far to fast for me; I still have much to do!  But as one of my favorite blogger friends said in her post today, let's all be sure to remember the reason for the season.  I am happy to say that the meaning of Christmas is the focus of the holiday celebrating here in our home.  The mister and I don't exchange gifts, and we've cut back quite a bit on the dramatic over-consumption that we have participated in during holidays past.  Santa gifts for the little ones are never overlooked, but otherwise we prefer to focus our time and energies on good food, good drink and good times with family and friends.  And this year, watching Bob recover daily from his dual surgeries and take his first crutch assisted steps, both legs the same length for the first time in twelve years, is the best gift either of us could have ever imagined.

xoxo, Anita

Sunday, December 18, 2011

It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas!

Now that things are settling in to a new normal around here, I feel ready to get into the Christmas spirit.  Just in time too, since {eeek!!} ~ it's only a week away!

Let's start with a few festive vintage images, shall we?

shiny paper and bows!

don't forget the mistletoe! xo

~gloves to keep and to give~

Say it with {festive!} flowers.

I have a busy week planned, filled with caring for my mister and decking the halls.  There is a tree to trim, flowers to be bought, gifts to be wrapped and friends to entertain.  I plan to do some cooking and some baking and some photograph taking.  And since I clearly love me some Dr. Seuss, the Grinch will be watched! 

I plan to share some of the best parts here with you.  What are your plans for Christmas week?  I would love to hear!

xoxo, Anita

Friday, December 16, 2011

Footprints and a Healing Garden

During our stay in the hospital for the misters surgery, we were fortunate to be visited by several wonderful friends.  One of them brought the beautiful poem 'Footprints In The Sand' engraved on marble.

It has always been a favorite of mine, and now hangs in our bedroom.  Behind it in this photograph is a rooftop garden that the hospital built for moments of quiet reflection for patients and visitors.  I had hoped to get some time to go out and photograph it, but in the end took photos through the window.  It seemed that we were always waiting for someone to come in the room with an important bit of information or healing goodness, so much so that I barely made it downstairs to get something to eat most days!

I like that the window reflects back an image of the photographer (me!) taking the photo.  It adds a bit of visual interest, I think.

I hope that there is beauty outside your windows today, dear friends!  Have a wonderful Friday.  It's crazy to me that next Friday will be Christmas Eve Eve!  Is it just me, or do you feel it also?  I would love to hear!

xoxo, Anita

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

One week and one day later...

I've found my way back to blog land!  Heartfelt thanks for all of your kind comments, thoughts, prayers and well wishes about the mister's surgery.  They worked; it went great!  The hardware removal went so smoothly that they were able to put in the new hip and finish in under four hours. 

Then the fun really began!  The standard three day hospital stay (medical care dictated by a corporation rather than a physician will always amaze me) turned into four because the patient needed a transfusion on the second day post op.  And what a difference that made! A few physical therapy sessions to learn how to walk with the aid of a walker, navigate steps and get into and out of a car, and we headed for home.

And that's when the fun really, really began.  I thought that I knew how challenging this part would be, but four days in, I can honestly say that I didn't have a clue!  I am beyond grateful for the friends who have visited at the hospital and helped at home; they've been lifesavers.

Thankfully, every day just gets better and better.  During the times of frustration and pain I remind the mister that this is the worst it is going to be; it only gets better from here.  I have applied this thought process to my life at other low periods, and it always helps!

And on a different note, did you notice my new profile picture?  It was drawn by the oh-so-talented Moorea Seal.  I love it so much!  {Having your picture drawn is better than air brushing. :-)} 

I hope that you are having just the most wonderful of days!  Remember to savor the great ones; they are truly a gift.



Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Nurses, Circa 1918


Today, my mister, the love of my life, is in the hospital for surgery to remove the existing hardware in his hip, and if all goes well, to have his new hip put in.  I want to thank everyone who has sent well wishes and/or included us in their prayers.  I am beyond grateful to be part of such an amazing community of bloggers and friends.

And aren't those nurses (above) stunning in their uniforms?  The mister is receiving amazing care where he is, despite the fact that the care givers are not quite as beautifully attired!

Have a wonderful day, wherever you are spending it!  I'll be spending some of my waiting room time reading the blog posts that I haven't been able to keep up with over the last few days.  I'll see you there!

xoxo, Anita

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Inspiration Is All Around Us

One of the things that I love about living near our nations capital is the opportunity it provides to learn more about our history in a larger than life way that can't help but inspire. 

The newest addition  to the national mall, the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial, is an amazing site to behold!

While doing some reading about  MLK and the great work that he dedicated his life to, I came across the following quote; one that spoke to me in a profound way.

AGAPE means nothing sentimental or basically affectionate; it means understanding, redeeming good will for all men, an overflowing love which seeks nothing in return.  It is the love of God working in the lives of men.  When we love on the agape level we love men not because we like them, not because their attitudes and ways appeal to us, but because God loves them.  Here we rise to the position of loving the person who does the evil deed while hating the deed he does.

It reminds me of something that my mother taught me as a child; a lesson she repeated whenever appropriate: "I may not agree with what you do, but I will defend to the death your right to do it".

This way of thinking presents a real challenge sometimes; it is often the easier path to write off the person who does not share our value system.  But what a loss that would be! 

Today, I am embracing the reminder to love ALL of my friends and family, even the ones {especially the ones} that I don't always agree with.  Hard work perhaps, even messy, but oh so worth it!

xoxo, Anita