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Sunday, December 2, 2012

And Now--Christmas

Can you believe it? I have a Christmas tree. It is small. It stands four feet tall from table to top. It has fourteen ornaments on it including the golden bird at the top. I made some bows from hand dyed wired ribbons to give it some depth. They look really nice in there. There are no lights nor any garland. Rather simple. . I like looking at it. I don't know if anyone else will see it.

 It is a young tree that comes from Noel Tree Farm in Litchfield New Hampshire. So it is freshly cut and requires to have the water level checked every day. Most trees out there have been cut sometimes two months ago and have no shelf life really. I went with my sister Linda and my mother to get our trees. I saw Linda's yesterday and it is big and beautiful. She has Christmas everywhere in her house. I don't mind. My life is a lot simpler than hers.

Right now I am spending my time working on Linda's Christmas scrubs and the ornaments I am designing for this year. So there is little time for making things Christmassy for the house. Next year. And then I have this very special box I am working out to send out as soon as possible in hopes of repairing a very damaged friendship. So little time and so much to do. How I love this time of year.

The New Home

I could not even take pictures in the end of the former apartment. It ended up being such a nightmare that even thinking of it was painful to the point that I ended up seeking energy work from an old friend Robin. Robin and I did not part on good terms when I left for Oregon, but we ended up repairing it quite quickly and life became quite gentle as a result. One revelation after another.

My sisters Linda and Suzanne took action and found this incredible apartment through an old friend of the family in the house right next door to where we all grew up on Brown Avenue. The McDonald's house. When I go out into the yard to my car I can see on the hill the roof the the cabana my father built which held the lawnmower and various "stuff" that I know not what it was. Looking out this door, there is the pond where I learned to swim in summers and skate in winters. There are the woods which occupied so much of our time until we grew old enough to no longer run the forest. My father taught me how to build camp fires there. How to carve out pieces of white birch bark to make cups for drinking stream water. I had a love of birds and used to collect their feathers and even bird wings. I know....

So many memories.  So here I am. My neighborhood. With the greatest landlords on the universe.

This is the entrance into the kitchen. Sliding glass doors from which i can see the pond. Pine Island pond. To the right is another house which I believe used to be the Blaisedell's house. On the other side of that house is a brook over which the pond empties. The brook feeds into a river and I am sad to say that I do not know the name of that river. So constantly, you can hear the sound of the waterfall. Very steady, very peaceful. I just love it. There is the Manchester Airport on the other side of the pond but I rarely hear planes. I think they come in from a different direction because it is a busy airport. A lot of houses that made up this neighborhood have been torn down to widen the street when they built the airport. So there is a lot of traffic but I don't have a problem getting in and out of the driveway. 

People ask if the traffic bothers me. It could if I let it. But I don't. This little apartment itself is very peaceful and I am so grateful for it that nothing bothers me. I am just happy to be here.

 Views of the kitchen.

 Lots of counter space and you can begin to see how many cupboards there are.


 On top of the cupboards and over the kitchen window there is shelving for me to put prize pottery.

The few teapots that I saved. Every evening I choose one to make my tea. A ceremony I was not able to have on Laval Street.

There are two steps going down from the kitchen to the rest of the apartment. Then a tiny wide hallway leading to the living room. These are some of the baskets I saved from storage. I could not keep them all as there just isn't enough room here. That's OK. I made a commitment to at least save all the Bolga Bags. A fiber artist never has enough Bolga Bags, Some things just cannot be given up.

The living room is the smallest room. Suzanne gave me a small sofa which fits in perfectly here. In front of it is my antique Chinese leather chest. To keep my living room organized I keep all my paper work, pens, bills, writing things, everything that normally would be hanging around my computer and sofa. The room is too small to have clutter. So this chest is perfect to contain all this and keep the room looking smug. In the far left corner is a table which holds plants. Not much sun comes in the few windows in this home. I have to find the right plants for this lighting.

The is the opposite wall where there is the unit that holds the television as well as a chair and a knitting basket. Always a knitting basket somewhere.

This is the hallway leading down to the sewing room and the bedroom Originally it was two bedrooms but as any seamstress will attest, the master bedroom will always end up being the sewing room 

This  tiny room is my bedroom. It also holds the twelve bins in which are packed all of the kimonos. I never show it to anyone. I just sleep there.

Here begins the views of the sewing room. It does not look big, but my cutting table is huge. The lighting is poor so I have lamps everywhere.

The sewing table in front of the window. It holds only two of my four sewing machines.

The floor is slanted and the ironing board would fall over if it were not for the props I have for the outer legs to stand on. It is temporary until I can think of something more permanent. 

I have the space to put up lots of shelving.

At one end of the room there are three sliding doors behind which is a full closet and storage. Lots of storage in this house.

More shelving.

A view of the room from that long closet. There is another window there.

We had Thanksgiving on Saturday as Linda worked the holiday. I had everyone over to my house. It was wonderful. I cooked the turkey. I made a huge restaurant tray of stuffing which I designed myself. I just had the lst of it while writing this. I don't know why we don't cook stuffing all year round. It is so delicious. Everything was very traditional. Mashed potatoes which I whipped up in the Kitchen Aid. Sweet potatoes cooked with buttered brown sugar and oranges. Jellied cranberry sauce. I did cook brussel sprouts with salt pork and shallots. As traditional as everyone wanted dinner to be, that dish was quite loved.  Linda brought butternut squash which we all love.

I made these rolls. A dough had to rise for 24 hours. Then it had to be cut into 60 balls and placed into 20 muffin cups and baked with a lot of butter. They were delicious but, eight people can only eat so many rolls. to there were plenty for others to bring home. I rarely eat bread so I didn't keep any for myself.

Around the table was Melanie, my niece with her son Hyrum and her friend Paul, Linda, my baby sister, Suzanne, my second sister and her husband John who had the most beautiful men's shirt I have ever seen, my mother and then myself.

Once everyone was seated and the food was laid out, I didn't do any fretting.  I planned dinner for three and we were sitting and plating at ten past three. It all went so smoothly. It was wonderful. 

Linda brought a chocolate cream pie. Melanie brought a pumpkin pie (for some reason that picture did not come through) and I made this triple chocolate bundt cake.I was amazed at hoe many of us had a piece of each. I can't remember what I had. I think I had the pumpkin.

A view to the pond from the closed in porch. It is peaceful back  there. I often find myself taking a few moments to contemplate the circle. How fortunate I am for having the family who has given me so much. Not only the family here, but the family in Oregon. My sister Denise.....