Monday, December 31, 2007

Happy New Year

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

A Birthday Wish

Today, December 26, is my birthday!

Every year that I get to celebrate I reflect on the hopes and wishes that I have accomplished: that my wisdom has expanded, my compassion has grown and that my subtle (who are we kidding) likes and dislikes have been tolerated.

Most of all I pray that we as mankind will begin to realize that this fragile earth we inhabit must be cherished. Each and every one of us has to do their part to accomplish just that.

As we wind down this year and roll into 2008 I hope that you will join me to make such a wish come true.

Thursday, December 20, 2007


At this time of year we are often overcome by memories.

Winter holidays as a child were filled with treasured moments. Trees, decorations, toys, food and family gatherings were all part of the enjoyment.

To this day one of my favorite indulgences is watching seasonal movies. There are many to choose from in black and white, animated and old stories made new again.

One in particular sums up all the charms of the holidays. It's a story full of boy meets girl, dancing, singing, girl meets boy, luscious sets and gorgeous costumes. Underneath all its comedy, music and to die for gowns it is the story of people coming together to help a former friend out of a dire situation.

I find myself singing along, tapping my toes and at the end a lump in my throat.

If you guessed the classic 'White Christmas' then it must captivate you as well.

As the movie comes to a close and they're all gathered around that huge decorated tree in their fantastic red velvet outfits and the doors are opened to reveal the snowflakes falling gently outside, for just a moment it takes my breath away.

Merry Christmas Everyone!

And this holiday season brings about a story of another kind. It is based in the olden times but with a deadly twist...Sweeney Todd, starring Donna O's favorite gardener/pool boy Johnny Depp.

Friday, December 14, 2007


I love this time of year. This morning we were treated to 5 inches of new snow. Fluffy, billowing flakes that draped the branches of the balsam fir in a sparkling holiday wardrobe. The mourning doves land upon it sending a gentle cascade of glistening ice crystals to the blanket beneath. The air smells fresh and renewed.

I also enjoy the extra letters and parcels that arrive in the post. Christmas cards from friends and family from near and far. And the parcels; some ordered and others a surprise.

A particular one I was waiting for arrived yesterday. The contents were not unknown, but as I pulled back the tissue that gently cradled it within the protective box I was pleasantly taken aback. The artist had manipulated the crepe paper that framed the lady within to appear like silk ribbon. And the colors; earthy brown and deep dark crimson red. (The shades of a rich chocolate raspberry soufflé.) The angelic lady figure placed so perfectly to accommodate her beautiful wings.

This was the first piece I had been able to purchase from Katie Estvold at Sparrow's Cottage. (Usually everything has been sold before I get to request one.) I have given her a special place to hang from the knob of my petite cabinet where I may indulge in her beauty often.

I'd also like to take a moment and send my wishes of hope to those in the US Midwest that have been effected by that massive ice storm earlier this week. It has left many in the dark and cold. Have faith, those tireless hydro crews are working non-stop.

May you enjoy your weekend as the countdown begins for this is the first day of Christmas. I hope your true love remembers!

Friday, December 7, 2007

Follow Your Heart

Have you ever come to a time in your life where two paths lie before you? The one you have traveled is steadfast, predictable, and comfortable. The other that beckons is new, not yet stable but enticing. You spend days, weeks, maybe months deciding to stay the course or travel on in a new direction, to experience opportunity both challenging and rewarding. You call on all your years of wisdom to decide and finally follow your heart.

I am often asked how I became a vintage textile appraiser. It was an easy decision that came to me one day when I was admiring an antique quilt. Even though it was more than 100 years old its colors were still vibrant. Each little piece represented a scrap saved from a garment that had long out lived its purpose. Upon closer examination I could see and touch the tiny perfect stitches that lovingly passed through the cloth. In one corner a set of initials had been embroidered. And then it happened; I wondered who was this woman from years ago that had placed these tidbits of her life so intricately together to provide warmth and beauty to herself, a friend or her children?

Today I am sharing one of these quilts, which is perfect for this festive season. The pattern name varies from the area in which the quilt maker lived. This one is from Massachusetts in the 1880s and is called 'the Whig Rose'. I fondly refer to it as the 'Nellie Quilt'. (Those of you that have followed my earlier posts are quite familiar with Nellie).

I'd also like to send my best wishes to Carole (Scoundrels And Rogues) who is pulling up stakes, packing her most beloved treasures and following her heart!

Sunday, December 2, 2007

A Little Change of Palette

With the coming of winter and the festive season upon us it is time for a change of palette. My new banner reflects just that.

The little vignette is a display of favorite trinkets. The glittery crown is by the Queen of Crowns, Donna O'Brien. She set her wonderful talent to task and created this custom crown just for me. The M stands for Miss Maddie's of course! It is a symphony of my adored colors; silver and robin's egg blue. Donna will be in Victoria magazine in the New Year.

The darling little silver soldered charms are the amazing work of Cathy Penton from Australia. I have never seen a business card look lovelier! Her work will again be featured in an upcoming issue of Romantic Homes.

All the other goodies are from my personal collections. I must also thank my daughter Jackie who's web design talent has once again been brought to the forefront.

Now I'd like to wish all of my fellow readers and new found friends a joyful -