Saturday, December 21, 2019


We have many angel figures that decorate our home at Christmas.  They come in all shapes and sizes.  I have a small collection that were given to me by my dear sister that has gone on to be a real angel herself.  

Every year she would gift one to me.  They really mean the world to me to bring them out of the cabinet and place them in the window.  The sun shining on them is quite lovely as they cast a beautiful glow.

My younger sister gifted me this sweet angel that lights up the dining mirror during Christmas.  The two white angels are gifts from my parents.

My parents gave me and my sisters this candle holder.  There were three of us girls and my Daddy always called us his three little angels. 


Angels, from the realms of glory, 
Wing your flight o'er all the earth; 
Ye who sang creation's story,  
Now proclaim Messiah's birth:

Come and worship, come and worship
Worship Christ, the newborn King.

Merry Christmas to you and your families.  God bless you, my friends. 

Sunday, December 15, 2019

Jane Austen's Birthday

In honor of Jane Austen's birthday on December 16th I'd like to repost an article I wrote after we visited her last home in Chawton, England.  This was on our very first trip to England in 2015 and forever made my heart want to return to that green and pleasant land.

 Today is the last day of our wonderful adventure in the beautiful English countryside.  We have had a wonderful visit to England!  It has been nearly perfect for us.  We have seen and done more than one could imagine.  Today there is enough time to see Jane Austen's home in Chawton before we get back on the Queen Mary 2 in Southampton this afternoon.  Come along with us as we visit the last home of Jane Austen in the village of Chawton.

Jane Austen lived in this house with her mother, and sister Cassandra, from 1809 until 1817.  Jane revised her manuscript for Sense and SensibilityPride and Prejudice and Northanger Abbey and wrote Mansfield Park and Emma and Persuasion while living in this home.

After buying our tickets we are directed to the back of the house to see the Bakehouse.


We then watched a short movie about the life of Jane Austen and then went around the side to see the kitchen.  Here are our clothes to put on while we work in the kitchen.

After working in the kitchen we need to go outside and see some of the garden before we enter the home.  It's a sunny warm day to enjoy walking around the lovely gardens that surround the home.

I'm looking forward to seeing the home of such an accomplished writer.  Of course, she received much more acclaim after her death, as is the case of so many writers.

"There is nothing like staying at home for real comfort." Jane Austen

 I love this chaise lounge in the drawing room of the home!  The wallpaper throughout the home is Laura Ashley.  It's not original to Jane Austen's time.  Here is a framed piece of some of the original wallpaper.

Also in the front parlor is a piano.  Jane entertained her family by playing pianoforte and reading to them.  Jane continued to take piano lessons well into her twenties which speaks to her love of music.  She often rose early to practice.  Like the characters she wrote about, Jane was an accomplished pianst.

In the parlor we see Jane's desk (table) she used to write her novels!  It's so small!!  I can't begin to imagine using this to write on!

“It isn't what we say or think that defines us, but what we do.”
 Jane Austen, Sense and Sensibility

Going upstairs we see the bedroom of Jane and her sister Cassandra.  The two sisters were very close.  Cassandra must have been devastated when Jane passed away at the age of forty one.

Cassandra's Sampler

Wash basin and chamber pot that is housed in closet 

Laura Ashley Wallpaper

In the Admiral's bedroom there is a red and white quilt top on the bed.  Jane's brothers were in the Royal Navy.  Francis Austen became Admiral of the Fleet and was knighted by King William IV.

This amazing quilt was stitched by Jane, Cassandra and her mother.  Although the quilt is really a coverlet as it only has a top and bottom.  The pieces were made from material of their nieces cotton clothing.  The Caen lace shawl belonged to their niece, Fanny Knight.

The coverlet is behind glass and is no longer on Jane's bed.  If you are a quilter you will really appreciate the border and its intricacies!  They are so tiny!

Here are a couple pieces of Jane's jewelry that are displayed in cases.

The bracelet is so delicate and lovely.  It was passed down through the family.

Jane received the topaz cross from her brother Charles in 1801.  Jane was inspired to write about it in Mansfield Park as the amber cross Fanny Price receives from her brother.

Jane Austen's health became so bad that she had to seek medical care in Winchester.  It is believed she suffered with Addison's disease.  Sadly she passed away soon thereafter.  She was buried in Winchester Cathedral.  There is a copy of the inscription that is at Winchester.

There is also a plaque at Westminster Abbey in memory of Jane in Poets Corner.

JANE AUSTEN 1775 1817

She was the daughter of a country clergyman, George Austen, and his wife Cassandra (Leigh) and was born at the rectory at Steventon in Hampshire on 16 December 1775. In her books she portrayed the society and manners of the life to which she belonged: Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice, Mansfield Park, Emma, Northanger Abbey and Persuasion. The family later moved to Bath and after her father's death she lived in the village of Chawton. Although she had several suitors Jane never married. She died in Winchester on 18 July 1817.

As we are leaving Jane's home we see this charming cottage next door!

Cassandra's Cup Tearoom and Bistro is across the street from Jane's home.  I wish we could go for a cup of tea, but we have a ship we need to board!

Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Christmas is Coming

Christmas is a mere two weeks away and we've been busy decorating.  I know you have as well as I've seen on your lovely blog posts.  This year we have had a few roadblocks along the way.  As we are getting older we have considered paring down on some of the decorating, but I've resisted this notion so Grayden and I have persevered through problem issues with our so called Christmas pre-lit tree.  

We worked for three days trying to resolve these issues and then decided we needed to either buy a new tree or buy new lights.  We opted for a strand of new lights for the top.  

Our birds flew in to take their place on the small little tree in the living room.

I made this little ceramic tree in 1979.  It now has helped us celebrate Christmas in our home for 40 years.  Do you remember these trees?


We've had this Nativity set for many years now and have placed it on the mantle to remind us of the reason Christmas is coming. 

For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The Mighty God, The Everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.   Isaiah 9:6