Monday, December 23, 2013

NO SMARTPHONE HERE........AND A MERRY CHRISTMAS TO EVERYONE......................


Oh my......remember these.....yes.....the WALL PHONE......How things have changed.



Have a wonderful holiday dear readers.....and looking forward to connecting in the coming year and meeting even more wonderful bloggers.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

I'VE DECIDED TO NAME MY CHRISTMAS TREE THIS YEAR.........

meet Monique
see her jaunty "little hat with the feather"

Well....the tree is finally up and lit.  Usually we have the tree up right after Thanksgiving, but this year we wanted a MUCH SMALLER tree so we had to find one.  We visited our usual spots and could not fine a "small" one to save our soul...so we went online.  
Found this little gem at Treetopia.  


She was so inexpensive....(OOPS what is that 2 doing in my pic)  LOL.  Easy to put together and only five feet tall.  Our old trees weighed a ton and we had such a time just getting them up and standing.


We have tons of decorations....everything from birds to balls that look like glowing moons.


And...I love it so when tree is just dripping with ornaments...don't you?


Have some Santa's and some angels....a little bit of everything that that has blessed our trees over the years.


In fact....the truth is.....we actually love a smaller tree.  So much more manageable at our age.....our new motto....LESS IS MORE......in life and in stuff.

Have a wonderful Christmas week dear friends.

Jo

Thursday, December 19, 2013

AN UNCONVENTIONAL CHRISTMAS SPRAY.....................................


Anyone who know me realizes that I use unusual things in my decorating and design.  I went to my local Trader Joe's
yesterday and was looking at the wonderful pine boughs that were shaped into Christmas sprays.  They were really inexpensive and I almost brought one home...but I resisted.

So this morning when I woke up I decided to make my own from whatever was growing and blooming in my garden at the moment.


We don't really have any pine trees when I live...but I do have lots and lots of lavender and rosemary growing in my yard and gardens.  
Went out and cut a bunch and tied it together with some very old Christmas pinecones I had on hand.  Put a pretty bow on the thing and attached it to my garden gate.  

Today the wind is blowing here in AZ so you really cannot get the full effect of all the "sparkle" but it is sort of sparkly.  (O:   The aroma is really heavenly as you open and close the gate and I read somewhere that you should have lavender growing by your garden gate just "for luck".  I like that idea.

Hope you enjoy my "little spray" of joy and also enjoy this AZ sunshine that I am sending you through my "virtual" photo.

Blessings dear friends.

Jo

Saturday, December 14, 2013

SEEING THE SACRED IN THE ORDINARY.....................



Each of us has our own way to seeing things.  How can one see the "sacred" in something without venturing into the "sweet sentimentality" that comes along with memories.

Some see miracles while others see something that is ordinary.
Some see beauty while others just see more work to be done.  Many see compassion while others see meddling. 
The list could go on forever.

This business of the Holidays, the shopping, the stress, the running here and there often means we have little time for sincere reflection of our lives.

This holiday I'm challenging myself to see more of the sacred in everyday.  This view is not necessarily strictly from a Christian perspective but from a perspective that engages one's soul.  
I'm going to really put some thought to the things I put around my home that reflect my sense of the Holiday season.


This Christmas glass is part of a set that has been in my home for over forty years.


I only have 7 of the 8 remaining....but this year they will hold flowers instead of drinks.  

No big Christmas dinner served here this holiday...but each time I view these glasses I will remember all the holidays past and all the people who have lovingly held these glasses in their hands.  Taking it a step further....I can envision all the workers over forty years ago  slowly crafting these glasses and putting the simple decoration on each one..with their own anticipation of the holiday season.  

Taking the time to really put some soul into your Holiday is really the important thing.....don't you think?

xo

Jo


  



Sunday, December 8, 2013

THIS BLOG IS BACK IN BUSINESS...............................................

I have been gone for almost a month.  Needed a well deserved break to deal with some health issues.  

But now....I'm back to blogging and looking forward to connecting with all of you again.

Just want to share with you something I have been working on.  


I am a firm believer in having elements of a "spiritual" nature in my home.  It really does not matter what religious significance it imparts....although I do have my own set of beliefs.

This holiday season I have embarked on  a project of making my own personal statement with these little pieces.  

Each one is made with things that have meaning to me...and things I have picked up during my life's travels.


This little altar piece is made of a Mexican Milagro heart, the top of an old snuff can found in Wyoming, part of a pair of earrings and a Grecian coin that has an OWL in the center.  The coin was gifted to me over 20 years ago by a wonderful woman on a trip to  Greece.  She wanted to let me know how much she valued my visiting with her so she made sure I left with a little gift.

The Milagro is topped with an old rusty bottle cap I found in South Dakota while walking my beautiful dog....Skyler.  Each time I look at this piece I have made I will be reminded of all the places I have been and the lovely people I have met.

As I get older I do spend more time thinking of the significance of all the people and places I have been fortunate enough to encounter.  

This holiday season is a good time for all of us to think on the spiritual side of our lives and if you are able.....make a little visual something that is special to you as a constant reminder.

As you know.....I ALWAYS prefer something homemade to something store  bought......

Have missed all of you and hope each one of you has a wonderful coming week.

xo

Jo

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

HOME FROM AMSTERDAM......................................




Arrived home at 9:00 p.m. last night.....and went right to sleep...


Just a little post today with a little trivia...
There are over 800,000 people living in the city of Amsterdam with 1.5 million bikes.  Everywhere you turn...bikes, bikes and more bikes.


I believe they are some of the healthiest people on the planet.  Sometimes I wish we in America would follow suit and rid ourselves of these gas guzzling cars and jump on our bikes!

Have a beautiful day....will post again as soon as I am recovered from my travels.

much love,

Jo







Sunday, October 13, 2013

LEAVING ON A JET PLANE..................................

Just a quick little note before we leave this Thursday.  It is a 20 hour or so traveling adventure to Budapest....of course, I have come down with a cold.
Drinking lots of tea, orange juice and chicken soup to try and get this thing out of my system before we take off this Thursday.

Leaving you with this beautiful seasonal bouquet.


Please change the water while I'm gone.
O O
>
\~~~/

Hugs,

Jo



Thursday, October 3, 2013

TODAY IS MY BIRTHDAY......I'M GOING TO HAVE A WONDERFUL BIRTHDAY MONTH!!!


I turn 67 today.....and actually I feel better as the years accumulate.  Since I've gotten older I actually have decided that I will celebrate each day during the month of October...just being grateful for being healthy and alive.  


I hope each one of you who follow this little blog of mine celebrate each day along with me....

Here are some of the things I have planned for my birthday month:

1.  Listing our current home the end of the first week in November.  We are pretty excited to be moving into a little smaller spot as it means less work and maintenance.  We just want to be able to live more and work less.  Although we still have not found our new spot.....we know it is out there.  

2.  Taking a 15 day cruise on the Rhine from Amsterdam to Budapest.  We will visit 5 countries along the way.  One of the stops will be in the place I was born....Nuremberg, Germany.  My  family  left Germany right after the war...when I was quite young.  Memories are almost non existent for me during that period of my childhood..but I am excited to see this city.

3.  Begin hiking with our neighbors across the street.  We have a new hiking area opening out where we live....flat, not at all rocky or hilly....a perfect spot for Brad and I to begin.


4.  Have dinners and lunch with friends while we are here.....before we leave.

We will be gone from October 17th till November 4th.  We are traveling with some friends from Idaho so it should be a great trip.  Won't be posting for a while as we are busy here getting ready...but hopefully will be able to share lots of my exciting adventure when we return.

Once again, a big thanks to all of you who stop by to see me when you can.  I feel so fortunate to have found friends through blogging, and it is so very enjoyable to see what is happening in everyone's  world.

hugs from me to you,

Jo


Tuesday, September 24, 2013

LIVING A BEAUTIFUL LIFE.............................




Do you know anyone who is absolutely UNABLE TO LIVE A BEAUTIFUL LIFE?  Unfortunately, I do.


It is one of the saddest things I have ever seen.  I have often wondered why some people are able to see beauty everywhere and make something out of nothing and others can't see past the end of their nose.  This certainly is not a criticism it is just an observation.


I don't think it is matter of your childhood environment or a case of having money or not.  I know plenty of people who had less than stellar childhoods and  who barely have two pennies to rub together and they still THRIVE on beauty.  


I know I had a extremely difficult childhood and I was never TAUGHT to make MY LIFE BEAUTIFUL.  Somehow along the way I picked it up...and I have lived in some pretty dismal places during my lifetime.  Yet...I have always made them beautiful in their own way with whatever I had on hand.


Using something in a new way to spruce up my little spot.


Look at your environment......what does it say about you.

Is it clean.
Is it organized.
Do you only keep things of beauty or things that have a purpose?
Do you like hanging out a home?
Do you play music?
Do you light an electric candle or a real one if you can?


Do you have something living in your home...it can be plant or animal..it doesn't matter which..just as long as it needs to be cared for.


"Have nothing in your home that you do not believe to be beautiful or useful."


I believe you home reflects how you feel about yourself.  If you have self love....your home will show it.  If not...your home will show that as well.


Let your home give you a hug each time you walk in the door.  Today I'm sharing a few pictures of special things I have around my home...most of them are not expensive..but just things I love and I find inspirational.  


Let's each of us shout from the rooftops how very special our homes are to us.


I think our home will repay us in kind.
Don't you?

xo

Jo 


ON WISDOM............................................

"THE ART OF WISDOM IS KNOWING WHEN TO SPEAK YOUR MIND....AND WHEN TO MIND YOUR SPEECH." Don't know where I found t...