#header-inner img {margin: 0 auto 0 300px;}

Saturday, December 31, 2016

Word of the year

It is that time again. The last day of a year. One more year has passed away. Time to reflect on what that year has been and look forward to a new fresh year beginning.

This year has brought newness to me. I began a dream of mine to take art classes and have felt very fulfilled by doing so. Art has always made me happy and applying myself each week to learning something new has been a joy for me.

This year also has had its struggles as my husband copes with the limitations of COPD. A once strong man has had to limit his activities which has been difficult. And added to that is the loss of vision in his eye caused by a stroke in the eye.

We have been blessed with a loving family which provides support for us when needed. I am so thankful that my family is there for us. As we age we appreciate it even more.

So my word for the year 2017 is hygge. I first heard the word when visiting Denmark with my best friend who was Danish. As you can see there are many definitions since there is no equivalent word in English. I want this feeling for me and my family in 2017. And I want all my husband's family to come together in love.





Wednesday, December 28, 2016


Hi friends, Just taking a little blogging break before the new year. Be back in 2017.

Friday, December 23, 2016

Merry Christmas 2016

xmas santa

Wherever you find yourself on Christmas morning may the happiness of the season fill you with love.

Wednesday, December 21, 2016


ducks on the pond

This video from a few years ago shows the ducks on the Willow Dale Cemetery pond. Each summer many children and adults come out to the pond to feed the ducks and sit on the benches provided. The ducks have a lovely life and all is well. That is until winter arrives. Then there are less people coming except for those brave souls who still go out to feed the ducks who lack running water and food. Last winter was exceptionally cold and the pond froze and even trapped a duck in the ice. The duck population dwindled down to just one lone duck left. In the summer many ducks were brought to the pond and there were near thirty at one time. Now once again winter has come. Generous people buy corn and food and daily go there to feed them. But they need running water to survive and it becomes a problem. Our local paper printed an article and someone from the community stepped up to take the ducks in for the winter. But he needs support from the people of our town to buy food. We are seeking solutions to the problem now. 



The art studio is complete.

IMG_3993The bins are temporarily labeled. I will do them on the computer later.
Now I have a place for my art books.




Now I will make time for art.

Just so you will know for sure that I am far from perfect here is a picture of the living room while I was organizing.


Tuesday, December 20, 2016

My art studio

  I spent some of my time today organizing my art studio. Maybe if I call it that it will inspire me to really be an artist. That is a label that I’ve never associated with myself. To me being an artist means that you seriously make art, exhibit it, and sell it. That’s legit. That’s confidence. I am but an amateur. I dabble.

   Art has always been in my life. It was my favorite subject in school and a few times I was singled out for my artistry. But nothing big. I took private art lessons while I was in high school and learned to use a variety of media. I decided to go to college to be an art teacher. I started my first semester and then a head on collision caused by a fast driver left all my family in the hospital and changed the direction of my life. I stayed home to take care of my family. When I went back to college I changed majors and became an elementary teacher. I still loved art and minored in it taking all the art courses I could and loving them. I felt that I did have talent and my professors agreed.

  But as things do life happened..marriage, children, and I put “artist” on the back burner. I still did crafts and used my creativity in teaching but didn’t draw, paint, or pursue artistry. I gathered art materials and occasionally took to paper and made something. Usually because I was so out of practice I wasn’t satisfied with the results which made me discouraged. I decided I wasn’t a real artist.


And so it went until last year when I decided to take art lessons each week. I have loved having a specific time to sit down and my teacher is very encouraging. I have produced some things I am very proud of.





Now having an “art studio” with all my materials gathered in one place gives me an actual place to sit down and create. I hope to schedule time twice a week to just sit there and make art.

I know it doesn't look like much now


Usually it hits in January. After the Christmas season and I get all the decorations put away and my house back in order I always get the urge to organize. It may be the cold weather that keeps me inside and the desperation to find something to do that makes me want to get into closets and drawers. There is a sense of satisfaction getting things in order. This year that feeling came early in my art studio/extra bedroom. It's a very small room with a twin bed and trundle bed under that I can pull out when I get company. The only other thing in the room is a bird's eye maple dresser inherited from Don's mother. When I'm not using it for guests...which is ninety nine percent of the time...I put a drafting table in there and use it as my art studio.

But I needed a space for all my art materials there. I have been storing them in the basement which really doesn't work for me. My solution was to think vertically. Yesterday Don put up some deep shelves all along the wall. He also pulled out nails and filled in the holes. Next he will touch up the paint. Now I intend to find fabric storage boxes and organize and label all my supplies to have on hand. If you live in a good shopping area that would be no problem for you. But I don't and the chances of finding ten or more boxes all the same is very slim. I might find two or three but our stores just don't carry that many items all at once. So I will be on the lookout. I look forward to having this space to call my own


Sunday, December 18, 2016

Are you in the Christmas spirit?

It's getting close...only one more week. Do you remember when you were young and you thought that Christmas would never come? You were so excited all December and thrilled with all the holiday activities. And on that morning you were filled with such joy.

As you get older you still hold on to that joy but it seems more subdued. It's a contentment and a feeling of happiness that all is right with the world.


Saturday, December 17, 2016

Blame it all on my roots


Now you know the above picture isn’t my style. I go for color every time. And vignettes on every space. But there is something about the clean green and white palate that draws me in every time.
VIBEKE DESIGN: "Smertelig"...dekorering:

I’m not sure what it is. Maybe it is hidden in my deep Scandinavian roots on my father’s side. My maiden name Garthwaite comes from waite…a piece of land and it belongs to Garth.
Christmas. carol's idea; take EMC's picutre and bowl and re create.....christmas or spring or really any season:

This style seems so peaceful to me. So serene. And a little Frenchy too.
Deur 2:
I could never live in this world but it is fun to visit.

Thursday, December 15, 2016


   It’s not yet January but I am beginning to think of my word of the year for 2017.

Forget New Year’s Resolutions. Scrap that long list of goals you won’t remember three weeks from now anyway!

Choose just one word.

One word you can focus on every day, all year long… One word that sums up who you want to be or how you want to live.

It will take intentionality and commitment, but if you let it, your one word will shape not only your year, but also you. It will become the compass that directs your decisions and guides your steps.

Discover the big impact one word can make.Image result for choosing your word of the year




Image result for choosing your word of the year

Image result for choosing your word of the year

Here are my past words:


2011-ecalirassez (French for lighten up or simplify)






This year I am contemplating these words:

create, artist, hygge, contentment, relax, discover, finish


Are you choosing a word of the year?

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

A little shopping

Today I finally felt like a little Christmas shopping so I went to Olean to see what I could find. I think I'm just about finished now and just have some packages to mail out. We will be staying home this year for Christmas for the first time in quite a few years.



Tuesday, December 13, 2016

A little girl's life


Sara ..bottom row,,,green hat...riding a float for the .girl Scouts.

I never had a little girl. With two sons my life was filled with fishing, hunting, taking apart cars, motorcycles and all sorts of manly activities. I had no one interested in makeup, tea parties or crafts. I enjoyed my boys but they never wanted to go shopping with me. Then I had three grandsons and finally got my little girl. And what a girly girl she is. She loves cling and all of the girly things. When I visit I'm hardly through the door when she says to me...lets play makeup. When I visit we play dolls and have so much fun. And I love being there. But I am not involved in their lives besides the four or five times a year that I see them. And I am missing out. This weekend Sara and Sean rode in floats at the town Christmas parade for scouts. They are in karate and dance and have sleepovers and birthday parties. When I tell my daughter in law she encourages me to move down there. And it is tempting. But this is my life here and I can't imagine leaving my house at this time. So for now I live for the Facebook pictures and FaceTime.


Monday, December 12, 2016

Favorite movie

I know you have a favorite Christmas movie. One that just warms your heart every time you watch it. And you make sure that you don't miss it each year. At our house Don always enjoys It's a wonderful Life.




I love White Christmas although they don't seem to play that anymore. But my very favorite is Love Actually. It has a great ensemble cast with many British stars and a great plot which comes together in a surprising way at the end. Here's a little summary.

Nine intertwined stories examine the complexities of the one emotion that connects us all: love. Among the characters explored are David (Hugh Grant), the handsome newly elected British prime minister who falls for a young junior staffer (Martine McCutcheon), Sarah (Laura Linney), a graphic designer whose devotion to her mentally ill brother complicates her love life, and Harry (Alan Rickman), a married man tempted by his attractive new secretary.

I also love The Holiday where a California girl exchanges houses with an English girl.

What is your favorite movie?


Christmas Home tour 2016

Welcome friends and happy holidays to you all. It’s Christmas time once again and here is a little tour of the sunroom. As you know I love to decorate (or as my son puts it…”if there is a surface you will put a decoration on it”). And I most enjoy the holidays.


As you look into the sunroom you will see that a lot is the same as last year. The new black and white buffalo checked curtains are new for the the winter and I put on the Pier One French chair covers.
IMG_2388The table is set for company with the beautiful plates that I purchased at Wegman’s last year. It is surprising the beautiful tableware that you ca find there. The silver bowl is new this year from Home Goods.
IMG_2390As a centerpiece I used once more the long wooden trough this time filled with pine cones, berries, moss and flowers. In the center is a lantern I purchased from Hobby Lobby.
IMG_2389The little black and white treat plates were a gift from my sister Diane.

IMG_2398Once again this year I decided to use lichen laced branches above the table. On it are hung pine cones, snowflakes and acorns.
IMG_2399The mercury glass candle holders light up with timers and were a gift from Linda.

Friday, December 09, 2016

Yes, we got snow.


It began snowing around 2:30 on Thursday night and didn’t stop until late Friday afternoon. It piled up deep and when I went out to coffee the road in front of my house was barely plowed. On the expressway driving was hazardous but when you know how to drive in these conditions and drive slowly there isn’t a problem. I watched all Friday as the snow kept coming. it is so beautiful.
IMG_2377I didn’t measure it but you can see from the snow on the birdfeeder and the fence tops that it is deep. We were plowed out early Friday morning and will be needing it again on Saturday. But we don’t plan to leave the house all weekend so that’s ok with me. My cold and cough is still hanging on and I’m tired of watching tv, reading, being on the computer and looking at magazines. I hope next week I have a chance to get outside and do some more Christmas shopping.




I woke this morning to my first snow of the season. It did snow while I was away for Thanksgiving but this is the first time for me.

There is something special about seeing the ground all covered in white hiding the dull brown.

And I had to include this cartoon. Happy snow day everyone.