...family, friends, home and other tidbits of a blessed life

Friday, November 30, 2012

Must be time for an Advent Calendar!

Can you believe that it's almost December? Check your calendars!
I've planned an advent calendar for you.. come by each day through December 25th for a new post showcasing something Christmas!

What is an Advent Calendar? It's a beautiful way to keep track of the days for both children and adults.

Open the door each day for a new surprise

The origin of the Advent Calendar can be traced back to the 19th. Century. The first styles came from the protestant area of Germany. Religious families made a chalk line for every day in December until Christmas Eve.  The first known Advent Calendar which was made by handwork is from the year 1851. Other early styles were the Adventclock or the Adventcandle - a candle for each of the 24 days until Christmas, like today's Advent wreath. In religious families, little pictures were hang up on the wall - one for each day in December. An other tradition was to paint chalk strokes on the door, one per day until Christmas Eve.

  In 1902, a Christian Bookshop in Hamburg published a Christmas Clock which was very similar to that published 1922 by the St. Johannis printing company. (Dominik Wunderlin, lic.phil. Swizzerland). The Austrian (NÖ) Landesmuseum is giving the year 1903 as the year of the first printed Advent Calendar. In 1904 an Advent Calendar was inserted in the newspaper "Neues Tagblatt Stuttgart" as a gift for their readers.

In contrast to the above Esther Gajek says that the first printed specimen was made in 1908 by a Swabian parishioner, Gerhard Lang (born 1881 in Maulbronn, Germany -died in 1974). When he was a child his mother made him an Advent Calendar with 24 "Wibbele" (little candies) which were stuck on cardboard.


 Later Lang was a contributor in the printing office Reichhold & Lang. He produced little colored pictures which could be affixed on cardboard at every day in December.

This was the first printed Advent Calendar, although without windows to open, published in 1908. This Calendar was named "Christmas-Calendar" or "Munich Christmas-Calendar". At the beginning of the 20's, Lang produced the first Advent Calendars with little doors that opened. At this time as well the Sankt Johannis Printing Company started producing religious Advent Calendars, with Bible Verses instead of pictures behind the doors. The Advent Calendar traveled a triumphal way around the globe. But Lang had to close his company in the thirties. Until that time he had produced about 30 different designs.

World War II terminated the success of this German tradition. Cardboard was rationed and it was forbidden to produce calendars with pictures. The first printed calendars after the war were printed by Richard Sellmer in 1946.

 We know that Advent Calendars filled with Chocolate was already available in 1958.  I have an addiction to these lovely things called Advent Calendars. I guess that I've had one since I was a tot has something to do with this addiction. I posted some of our collection HERE .  Enjoy. I hope you will check out the posts from December 1st on.. Thanks for dropping in and I am hoping you are having a wonderful Chris✝mas season!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Children's Christmas Tablescape

Oh Little child so near the tree
The precious view you clearly see 

 Adorned in white, a glistened sight
A chilling warmth, it’s nearly night 

 Excitement grows within each eye
A splendid match, so bright yet shy 

  You make each wish, each secret part
A ray with God, so fills your heart 

Your wants are small, unselfish child
Not to be wrapped, branded or styled 

 A world of hope, filled full of peace
A caring call, let love increase 

 Next year this child so wants to be
Back out to watch, this growing tree 

 What of our wants as time goes by
Will hope and peace and love climb high
©2001Roger J. Robicheau 

 I love setting a magical table for the children. Something for all their senses. 
Just nothing with a flame.
No knives for the little people. 
And no candy before dinner.

Tablecloth - a red and white gingham waffle weave older than dirt.
Green and red napkins - purchased on sale a long time ago
Dinnerware - Golden Rabbit
Flatware - Gorham
Snowman - Tuesday Morning

Thanks for stopping by. I hope you enjoyed your visit and will leave a comment so that I know you were here and I can find your blog! I'm linking up to Cuisine Kathleen's Let's Dish and  Susan's Tablescape Thursday! See you there.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Today, I am thankful for a parade of tables tablescape

Do you start your Thanksgivings day with a parade? Not sure we watch the whole thing, but the Macy's Thanksgivings Day parade is certainly on in our house. So I'd thought I'd share some past tables with you today.  I hope you enjoy the parade route... see you on the other side! The title and date are clickable links!

I totally love the vintage, handmade linen tablecloth. The color on the table comes from the fruit on the pumpkin and the few oak leaves. Rich silver and crystal take this casual table up a notch!

This was our table in 2010. It's full of sentimental pieces. Copper chargers from Bernina and Chicago. Fabric for the tablecloth picked up on my travels, Silver from my grandmother, napkins from my mother.

Thanksgivings 2010
The copper theme is further carried out with the large copper basin used for the centerpiece. Inserting fall leaves makes for a great arrangement filler usually for free.

Pheasant feather placemats over a linen tablecloth give the table a very rustic feel. I had won the placemats from the Twiggery.. Oh gosh they are just fabulous. Simple wooden plates, very simple white salad plates, monogrammed napkins and additional rustic accents make for a polished, casual table.

November 2010
The very vintage centerpiece is a great piece to carry out the theme some more. 

This would be another great Thanksgivings table. Tapestry placemats, gold chargers, white dishes, gold salads, always a classic combination. 

November 2010
The white in the flowers ties the white napkins to the table. 

Thanksgivings 2012
This year, we are dining on a linen tablecloth with Lenox china. So excited, it's new china. A new beginning. 

May the good things of life
be yours in abundance
not only at Thanksgiving
but throughout the coming year

Monday, November 19, 2012

Today, I'm thankful for...

Today, I'm thankful for my friend Diane. We are kind of related, but not really. Her aunt is buried in our family plot. So the relation is all by marriage. But the friendship was immediate. 

We met at bible study. It was an exciting time, as our BSF class opened the first evening women's class in decades in Lubbock. We had spent 18 months, or was it two years?, praying for this to come to fruition. 

It's the first class night of the first class. Diane walks up to me and says, I think we are related. And I say, how so, cause I don't think so. You see, we can account for most relatives in this part of the lower 48. So Diane, who obviously has done her homework, I'm still wondering how... explains it all to me. And I go home and tell my husband who is equally astonished. I love how God puts the right people in our lives to make us complete!

Since then, there has been a kinship and friendship that has blossomed. Hugs Diane, cause I know you don't like them!!! Thanks for the sweet, lovely little candle.

Today, I'm thankful for my new relative Diane...my new friend Diane... and this lovely lemon scented candle. Voluspa.. these are just little jewels!!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Today, I am thankful for...

Ooh boy, I've not been thankful since last Wednesday! Ooops. There was a lot for which to be thankful. My friend Stacey, with whom I had a fabulous lunch and then spent the day on Saturday. We crafted and had a blast.. So totally thankful for Stacey.

And I had my BSF leader's meeting way too early on Friday morning. But so thankful that I am part of the group. So awesome.

And today, well that pile of leaves got even bigger and it was drizzling... and still our son got them off the patio. So thankful these leaves provided shelter from the blistering sun this past summer and so thankful for this young man. You rock Michael!
...counting the days till I can be thankful for leftovers! are you?

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Today, I'm thankful for a thanksgivings tablescape

I've decided how our table will be set for Thanksgivings.. and it's not even the day before!!

Since I dropped off the "Not buying anymore dishes" bandwagon in January, and I reasoned I could use these for Thanksgivings, I challenged myself to try these dishes on. Yes, you read correctly that I fell off the bandwagon (I started Jan 1) around... let's say.... ooh, ouch.. January 14th! 

It was NOT my fault. Really. That email from One Kings Lane just jumped up and down in my inbox and I had to act on it.. fast.. I mean real fast. I never even slowed down until I was at the finish line! The price was so low, it literally took my breath away. Okay, enough excuses....

I used a linen tablecloth and napkins from Williams Sonoma. Brown with a green band. It's great to use chargers on fine linens because it keeps the little messes off the tablecloth! This is one of their jacquards that are made in Russia. Great feel and drape!

I brought in my nut trees. I had seen these years ago at Horchow's for a pricey amount. Especially for nuts. So I went to the grocery store, picked up some nuts and then purchased some styrofoam shapes. It's better to spray paint them with spray paint made for styrofoam.. brown would be my choice. That way you can't see anything behind the nuts if they don't overlap. Use hot glue (not the low temp type) to adhere the nuts.

I really like the addition of the pears and the little vases of wheat. It was too early to go buy some flowers and expect them to last until next week. I'm thinking of some of the little mum buttons and maybe a berry type of something to poke in with the wheat. 

Still loving these Libbey Rock Sharpe glasses. 

I like to keep a towel  or spare napkin with the water pitcher. Easy to catch any drips.

Antiques make a good  accessory for this chore!

The pears are also found in the plates. I think I'll do a sugared fruit centerpiece for Christmas. 
Yes, dear sweet husband, rest assured we can use the same dishes twice!

I love to use the silver pieces I have. Call me silly/stupid/crazy, but I love to polish silver. 
I like to polish a piece or two every Saturday. That way they are never all tarnished at the same time.

Can you believe these pears are fabulous fauxs?

The fauxs look very much like the pears on the plates!

Another treasure, one of those use many ways candlelabras.

I might or might not get the sterling out of the safe. But this set of Old Company Plate is really one of my favorites. 

 And then I remembered that I had purchased these white boo pumpkins specifically for this table. Better late than never, I put them on the dinner plates.

 Notice that there is no salad plate. I tend to do a Buffet for the bigger meals, only because it's easier to have everyone get what they want than to pass a gazillion bowls around the table. How do you serve?

Tablecloth & napkins - Williams Sonoma
Chargers - Tuesday Morning
China - Lenox Holiday Tartan
Water stems - Mikasa Parklane
Wine stems - Libbey Rock Sharpe
Flatware - Old Company Plate
Candlesticks - antiques

Today, I'm thankful for you. For your visits, your comments and your continued support. You make my life a lot brighter each and every day. Your visits make my day. I get most of my visiting done on Saturdays! See you the. Have a very blessed Thanksgivings with you and yours. 



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