Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Winter Arrived Early

What day blustery day today, everything is closed from here in north eastern New Brunswick.

 Everything is closed today & most events have been cancelled. I'm warm & cozy with the firebox burning the logs into bright red coals that are as light as feathers when poked with the fire poker.

On Sunday morning I saw that the water in the bay was as still & calm as glass. I think that's what it called the 'calm before the storm'. And oh so true after hearing the ice pellets, wind, snow, & just on blustery winter day, a week before the season actually begins.

 We still had a bit of snow left after having the temps reach 6C. The calmness was eerie & beautiful.

 The reflection of Bay du Vin Island was tranquil & it looked larger than normal, with the stillness of the water.
                    It was an overcast morning, that would open up to a bright sunny afternoon.

          I never noticed the thin part in the island before. I've never been on the island ... one day.

 With the different heights in the trees & the reflection below, it resembles a mirrored bar graph.

 I used the big lens for a closer look, I need more practice as the camera is heavy & harder to keep steady. Very grey morning with the overcast. Such still water though!

 I never noticed the smelt fishing sheds before, looks like three of them in the near center of the pic.

                                      Bay du Vin Island looks like two islands from this shot!

 Boris enjoyed his run along the bank whilst I did the photos. He's not into the cold windy weather.

Later that day....

I was visiting my friend Ross, he too lives near the water, on Eel River. Look at the afternoon sun & how blue the water was when the sun was on it!

                                             It is a lovely view from his backyard with the river.

I had to go view his 'sleigh in the living, I had to ask him again, "Really a full size sleigh? In the livingroom?!"

                                Yes! A gorgeous, full size antique sleigh in his livingroom!!
      The sun was bright on this vignette of St. Nicholas , love the drum set next to him!

The rich red ruby glass warmed the dining room, the antique shelf was removed from the exterior of an old home. Ross had many antique collections throughout his lovely home. It was a great Sunday afternoon & with the sun shining he went out to finish a outside arrangement.

 How gorgeous is this! Next year I too will do some arrangements similar to this style, so simple yet effective! Height, fill, & wow! Branches, 2 kinds of evergreens, & faux poinsettias - gorgeous!
I'm going to be watching for the after Christmas sales in a few weeks & I'll find my wow decorations!

Boris' Photo Shoot~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 He doesn't mind wearing this collar, he's had it for years & the elastic has let out making it even more comfy for him. The bells jingle very softy so he's not annoyed with them either.

                                 I think he's saying ' Wishing you a Merry Christmas!' lol

 His eyes are scary in this photo. lol
                                                       Boris your a handsome little man!

 Rexton loves to 'perch' on my sewing machine. She's such a Manx, loving the highest point!
Last week she made me shiver, when I was upstairs she was on the mezzanine banister & was looking at he large chandelier in the greatroom. You could just see her calculating how far of a jump it would be over to that area & my panic at the height of her miscalculating & falling!  She is like no cat I have ever owned & she delights me most days & keeps me on my toes the other days! lol

Christmas Rum Balls Mmmmmm

Bill & I were in at the Bulk Barn a few weeks back gathering supplies for the rum balls. The raisins were the main ingredient & needed to soaked in the 5 yr old amber rum, soaked so long that they plumped right up & were then puree into a heavenly smelling mixture.
I've used Namama's recipe & have over the years changed this or that & each batch has been great or maybe it's the rum that's so great! lol
Well this year, the clerk at the Bulk Barn explained how she soaked the cherries in vodka & they were wonderful in her drinks. Then I remembered my S-I-L telling me how so had soaked her cherries in a alcohol before making the run balls. Yes! this year I was going to change those plain cherry filling to alcohol soaked fruit by soaking them in my Absolute vodka in a sealed dish in the freezer, until needed.

 With them in the vodka they did not freeze but were very cold whilst handling them to cut smaller.

 A pie plate full of chocolate sprinkles were a waiting them after the cherry piece was placed inside the raisin/rum mixture. They were rolled until covered.

 Then a cherry piece was placed on top for decoration & to let Bill know that this batch was made with crushed walnuts inside the batter. He has a nut allergy that is hard at this time of the year, nearly everything is laced with a nut of one kind or another,
Just for him, I made a 1/2 batch nut free!

                                        Chocolate & cherry really do go hand in hand! yum

 The wee assembly line that produced about 200 rum balls that will be enjoyed by family & friends this holiday season

 Nine sleeps till Christmas! I can't believe again, it has come so quickly!
I've call the plow guy for our area to plow me out in the morning as I've a hair appointment that I want to keep. This time of the year hairdressers are run off their feet with their customers. A sampling of the rum balls should help a bit. lol
This Saturday Bill will arrive & the kids will come on the Eve before Christmas Eve. I'm so excited to have everyone together for Christmas, the first Christmas of many, in New Brunswick.

The wind has been howling all evening here at the shore & the side door no longer opens because of the snow drift on the porch, right at the screen door's glass front. The snow is very weighted, heavy snow is not the easiest to shovel either & the plow out will make the trip down that long lane easier.
This storm front is to end by tomorrow afternoon & the next front is warmer with rain, heavy heavy snow after that.

Thank you for visiting this blustery day & wherever your viewing this from, stay warm & safe.

This made me smile ~~~  Happiness is not a station you arrive at, but rather a manner of traveling.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Stockings Are Hung!

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas! The snow has brightened up the day & the firebox inside makes one feel cozy.

                      The backyard is our shore side & this is what it looked like after the first snowfall.

You can see how the white snow brightens the dark brown/grey surroundings. The green emerald cedars that were planted this summer add to the festival look this time of year.

The potting shed has a beautiful local made wreath & other than that it  didn't get decorated this year.

Away In The Manger

 I wondered how long it would take before Rexton perched herself up high with the Nativity manger!

                                         She sit high & looks like she's guarding the manger...

                        Then ever now & then looks inside to make sure everything's OK.

She's curious about outside this year & has sneaked outside once on me this week. I could hear her but couldn't find her...until I opened the front door & there she was. I'm hoping she finds it too cold to be outside.  She snuggled up & slept the day away after her adventure beyond the door.

 The Christmas Stocking's were a fun challenge. I followed the Jim Shore pattern from the Fons & Porter quilt magazine... then added my own variations to them.

 There were three different patterns, so I repeated them twice. Each time using different fabrics from the selection of fat 1/4's that I had.

 Then from the yard of fabric, I made the backs. All six fronts and backs, were sandwiched & quilted with a cream & check flannel fabric for the inside of the stocking.
The backing shows better...

 On its own here, I put it here for this photo shot & later I could not find the sixth backing when it was time to be sewn with the front. I looked high & low for this back, I laughed out loud when I finally found it, hanging from the magnet...just were I left it for the picture!  Yes, good memory, just not long! lol

                         I love glitter at Christmas, so each sock has glitter somewhere on it. lol

                       The iron on metallic rickrack was so easy to apply with the hot iron.

Bill's Decorating ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 When Bill was here, one early morning whilst having his very early coffee alone (still on his China jet lag time) he threw my wool & angora hat onto of the steers head, again & again till it landed where it is now! He wanted to place the Santa hat on its head but it's still packed away somewhere.

Funny guy! lol

Another Sewing Session ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 With the fronts & backs sewn on & the binding started in the front, I could add the custom cuffs to each stocking.

 And with the leftover fabric scraps I did the Mini Christmas Mystery with Temecula Quilts. I would make one square for the wee quilt & one square for the tree! It just felt right with the red & white going on. lol These bocks finish at 2 1/2", yes a wee block that hangs beautifully on the tree.

 I also took the time to finish crocheting this clothes pin doll that I started years ago...it was red & white after all! lol

 The tree looks best with the lights on,  I can't wait for the kids to start arriving in a couple of weeks.

 Their stocking are now hung!

 And soon, St. Nicholas will soon be here! lol I love Christmas!!

The great room is now dressed for our first Christmas in New Brunswick! Ho Ho Ho!

With Christmas fast approaching I hope you too have the Christmas spirit. I just love this time of year. Thank you for stopping by for a visit. Next time we'll go into the kitchen to see what's happening there. Right now I've got raisins soaking in 5 year old rum for our Namama's traditional rumballs for gift giving for our family & friends.

A Thought For This Week.

"No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted." Aesop