…from the worst cold I have had in years ~THE WEEK BEFORE CHRISTMAS! It started as a dry throat Sunday night and got a little worse each day but even Wednesday I still I thought "’Ok, this cold is peaking and it will be all good from here on out”. In the last 5 years, I have not had a real cold, a bad cough, or the flu. A stuffy nose and a dry throat but never a full blown cold. I attributed that to no longer being around kiddos at work and no kiddos to bring germs home and I have a faithful routine of Vitamins and supplements. So Wednesday my glass was still half full. Then I woke up Thursday and my glass was totally drained. I will spare you the rest of the details and just say I was pretty sick. And frustrated! I had to cancel several appointments that were made months earlier and I couldn’t watch Lili and NONE of my Christmas preparations were getting done. Sure, Mr. Red Door helped me with the little day to day things but it was hard to read about all the baking and preparations YOU all were getting done. Reading blogs was about all I could do when I wasn’t camped out on my daybed.
BUT as is often the case with life, something happens to put things into perspective. Friday morning our bloggy friend Sandy over at For A Love of Prims posted about a tragic fire in her town. Several families lost their homes and everything they owned and/or their livelihood ~ just days before Christmas. Suddenly, not being able to buy just one more present or bake that certain cookie, didn’t seem so important. Reading about how her community was banding together to help these families was just the attitude adjustment I needed. Today she has a post which shows the devastation but also how much has been done in just a few days. It is heartwarming and uplifting!
So no that I have rejoined the human race, like most of the east coast, we are in the middle of a horrible blizzard right and we are stuck in for the day. Mr. Red Door is on vacation this week and as is our tradition and he helps me with the last minute preparations. Sometimes, he even cooks a meal. This morning, he made us scrambled eggs and toast for breakfast. I can’t remember the last time I had that and it hit the spot! And fortunately the presents were already bought and wrapped and so at this point, I can focus my energy on the two feasts I need to prepare ~ a Swedish Buffet on Christmas Eve for Mr. Red Door’s side of the family and two Prime Rib Roasts and all the trimmings on Christmas Day for my side of the family. Mr. Red Door is not used to seeing me sidelined like this and he knew I was worried so he went grocery shopping before the storm started so I could start cooking and baking when I felt up to it. Yesterday afternoon I was itching to start and the first thing I wanted to try was this ~
Cinnamon Toast White Chocolate Pretzels
After hearing my friend Kathy rave about these, I decided this sounded like an easy enough recipe to whip up and I was right! The recipe makes 2 good size cookie sheets of them. I wish I had doubled it because they are addicting (just as Kathy said they would be!!)
For the recipe and instructions, click HERE!
And because he is such a good guy, before he heads outside later to fire up the snow blower, Mr. Red Door is fixing to help me roll out 5 pounds of Swedish meatballs. Because they are so small, that’s a lot of little meatballs!
Tomorrow Mr. Red Door and I will make our annual trip the Gift Chalet for our Swedish Cheeses and Sausages and we’ll also make a stop at Helen’s Bakery for Swedish Christmas bread, the Coffee Cake for Christmas morning and some other traditional goodies. That trip always makes it feel like Christmas to us.
Have you been over to A Primitive Place website recently to see all the wonderful Holiday Home tours?? Well, if you have then you are in good company because Country Sampler also has!!! And they choose 3 of the homes they saw to be featured in their 2010 Christmas issue! Kristine and Sarah worked very hard to put together 6 pages of gorgeous homes all decked out for Christmas!! Like several other homes that have been featured on A Primitive Place in the Member Gallery or as a featured Home of the Month in the past, this time 3 of those homes caught the interest of Country Sampler magazine. The one I can share by name right now is our talented and very sweet blogging friend Kath, over at The Old Weeping Cedar. Esther Schmidt had seen Kath’s home and the other 2 homes on the Holiday Home Tours on APP and since Esther and I still keep in touch and chat, I was able to help her get in contact with Kath and the others. I couldn’t be more thrilled for them!! Kath has blogged about it here. Do hop on over to read about it and while you are there, please wish her a very happy birthday - it’s today!! Happy Birthday Kath! This couldn’t happen to a nicer or more deserving person!
When going through some folders of pictures on my hard drive, I found several of Christmas Decor that I had not put into my album so they never got posted here. I hope you enjoy them.
This Father Christmas figurine was one of my first. I got him at a juried craft show 19 years ago. Naw, my memory is not THAT good ~ I can tell because he is signed and dated! When you first come in Behind My Red Door and start up the stairs, he greets you. I often forget to take his picture because he stands guard on the floor.
Hint hint - This ornament was made by one of those 3 homeowners I mentioned above!
Another hint - This red shelf was purchased at the shop owned by another of those 3 homeowners!
Wow – it seems like just yesterday I was rushing to take fall down and get Christmas up in time for my Gathering! And in just a few days, it will be time to gather up the dried up greens and all my Santa's and reindeer and angels and feather trees and stockings and ornaments and pack them away for another 11 months. I’ll leave a few special snowmen out, and add just a few more, but after months of bittersweet and greens and seasonal accents everywhere, I am looking forward to a cleaner, leaner look! I am at the point in my life when I enjoy my every day decor. I have been collecting those treasures for so many years and refining my look and I enjoy seeing them and appreciating them. I am drawn to them because they evoke the feel of days gone by when possessions were harder to come by and when they were appreciated for what they were. After putting all the extra’s away, I like seeing my treasures in a simpler, less cluttered setting where they stand on their own.
With all the snow on the ground, it is hard for our feathered friends to find food. My friends Linda over at Simply Country Seasons and Robin over at The Robin’s Nest, both had great ideas for feeding them. Stop on over and check them out!!
Yesterday was technically the end of the Gratitude Challenge but I wanted to add this today. As sick as I felt, I am very grateful it was not the H1N1 flu. The Christmas Season is such a special time, full of anticipation and I so enjoy making it special for my family. I am grateful I am recovering in time to do just that. We are so excited to share this Christmas with our extended families ~ from the oldest to the youngest.
To all my friends and peeps and fellow bloggers, stay safe and warm and I’ll be back sometime after Christmas.
Christmas is the gift of Peace.
Christmas is the gift of Hope.
Christmas is the gift of Love.
May Christmas blessings brightly shine
on those you love and you,
And may the special love of Christ
be with you all year through.
Wishing You a Joy-Filled Christmas!
Thank you as always for stopping by and making Behind My Red Door part of your day!
Until next time – hugs, Grammy Linda