Thursday, December 31, 2015

The Last of the Christmas Decorations

Gentle friends, this past weekend end we were running around and found ourselves over on Fulton Street and near St Ignatius Church and the Carmelite Convent and thought we'd stop and see what there might be to see.......  I've Posted at length about both of these lovely spaces HERE.......

..... inside the Chapel we were met with a a lovely creche .....
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...the Christmas decorations over at St Ignatius were just lovely....... here are some snaps

....  it looks a bit dark because I turned off the flash to get the really dramatic lighting.....

.... this advent wreath and candles was free floating and suspended from the ceiling...standing there it gave me the jitters just thinking about the ladder you would need to get the wires tied off.....

.....  these trees were just enormous and so effective along with the mounds of poinsettias....

... for the most part they used living and dried  plants and foliage, but the columns were wrapped in silk garland... there must have been just miles of the garland ......

.... near the crossing transept there was a 3/4 sized Nativity, I had to use the flash here so the picture is on the hot side.....It was a really lovely way to close the Christmas weekend.  
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 That about wraps up the week.  We are staying in tonight and have a New Years lunch to attend tomorrow, but other than that I'm headed for a quiet weekend of taking down the Christmas tree.....  Have a safe evening and a wonderful new Year!!!

Take care,
edgar

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

An Exchange and a Little Stitching

Gentle Friends, I took a little break from the computer, it wasn't all my doing as we had super slow intermittent connectivity but I though i would post some stitching.....

I took part in an Exchange over at the HOE and my ornament finally arrived just a couple of days ago.  It has been out and about in the mails for well over a month - it must have been coming via camel, in keeping with the Season.....

... my partner, Karen, stitched for me the cutest snowman, and finished it with some ball fringe...
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....  I've also been ever so slowly stitching away on Santa's Village, and have finally finished up Mrs. Claus' Cookie Shop.  I'm saving the french knots after all the major stitching is finished.  Now the first row is completed it's on to the second row.....
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Hope your Christmas was wonderful, I'll have a Post or two to wrap up the Holidays.....  thanks for stopping by, dos top again!!

Take care,
edgar

Friday, December 25, 2015

A Very Merry Christmas!!!!

Gentle Friends, just a quick note to wish you a very... 

 ...  Merry Christmas and a most prosperous and healthy New Year!!!! 

From all of us......edgar, Rico, Peaches, Smokie, Whaumpa and Lolly

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Working on the Christmas Cake

Gentle Friends.....last night I started the last steps towards "Christmas Cake" for Christmas....  
I got the tin out....


 ...opened up and unwrapped the cake.......

...what I needed to do was get the marzipan layer on the cake a few days before the fondant so that it can "dry" out a bit.  To make the marzipan stick to the cake I needed to brush some apricot jam that had been melted over low heat....  I had about two tablespoons of apricot jam in the fridge....

 ... thank goodness I hadn't counted on what we had, and picked up some more on the way home...  that lid was sure tough to open up....

 ...now, everywhere I read about how to do this cake stated that I needed to strain the jam to get out the bits of apricot - that didn't sit well with me, so I hauled out the immersion blender and smoothed that jam right out....

 ... I had made a double batch of marzipan over the weekend,  I'll never buy it again, so easy and so tasty!!!

.... here's the cake after being prepped with a sticky layer of apricot jam....

... the marzipan was still on the sticky side so I needed to work some more icing sugar into the paste and rolled it out....

 ... and the cake covered with the marzipan, I dusted off the excess sugar and straightened up the top and sides and it now sits on the dining room table "drying."
... I'll make the fondant tomorrow and get the whole cake decorated Christmas eve....
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That's about does it for today sports fans, thanks for stopping by, do stop again!!

Take care,
edgar

Monday, December 21, 2015

.... and a few more decorations.....

Gentle Friends, we hit the road to go shopping Saturday and one of the places we needed to go was over to Japan Town and the large shopping center there.....  here are a few snaps...

... there were lots of simple decorations, but this shop really went all out .....

... all over the two malls there were these decorated tress...and yes it was leaning,
I couldn't find one that wasn't.....

.... here is a close up of the cranes.....

.... and more cranes...  it is a great place to shop and even the parking was easy when we arrived, we we were leaving the parking garage was filled up to capacity.
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That's about it for today sports fans, only a few more sleeps until Christmas, most everything is done, wrapped and sent...

Take care,
edgar

Friday, December 18, 2015

Some Christmas Decorations Downtown

Gentle Friends... I had to do some shopping downtown last night... and I took my camera along....

 ... I usually park in the Mission Street Garage and walk up to Market street.....  
this is Market looking West...

 ... from the 5th Floor Macy's windows looking down  onto Union Square...
sorry about the reflections...

 ... Macy's has a great area every Christmas called Holiday Lane... full of trees, ornaments and Santa...... Here are some of the dozens of trees....



 ....  I like the sparseness of the branches on these ...

 ... this tree was far more turquoise, and pink than the snap makes it out to be.... 
I did not care for it at all!!

 ..... I walked along Geary Street and got this snap from across the street looking up at the tree in Union Square....

 ... the tree in Neiman Marcus.....

 ..... one of the Macy "fancy schmancy" windows....  gearing up for New years Eve I imagine...

 .... a Macy window that is far more my speed...  there are a series of Peanuts windows that also have cute pets from the Humane Society in them,  those windows were far to crowded to get any kind of decent snap, in fact I am surprised how this one turned out so "people free"....

.....  going back to the car I took another shot of Market street and some of the decorations.....
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I was on the early side when I was there since I went from work to downtown, it's about a 5 minute drive....  and the crowds just start to grow later in the evening, and this weekend it will be a total zoo down there... I knew I couldn't deal with any of that.....but it was fun last night and I am basically done with shopping for Christmas!!  WooHoo!!
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There you go sports fans, thanks for stopping by, have a wonderful weekend!!

Take care,
edgar

Thursday, December 17, 2015

A Little Christmas Decorating

Gentle Friends... I am so enjoying Vonna's "25 Days of Christmas" Posts that I am inspired to share a little of the decorating around the old homestead...I also got quite a few comments and emails about the dough bowl of stitched pieces I had out...here's a little more info...in our living room I filled the bowl with some of the wonderful exchange pieces I've received over the years...
I used to decorate a tree with them, but the place I put up the tree now has a fish tank and I've no special place to put it up...

...I really enjoy them and so instead of not having them out and on a tree I just filled the bowl up, every couple of days I'll replace them with others, I've got a couple more boxes of these lovelies so that will be no problem...the Santa Candy box was made by my Granny 50+ years ago, and I remember it being out every year filled with her homemade Christmas candies - like Turtles, Fudge and Chocolate Cherries...now it holds extra ornament hangers...the "Log Cabin" piece is from a quilter in Ocala Florida and it is something I have out every year.

One of the new ornaments this year came from a friend of Rico's....and it is darling....

.... and last but never least my Nativity, also made by my Granny, I'm sure I said it before, it was a Christening present to me from her, so it is also 50+ years old.... I love having it out, not only because of what it represents - the Reason for the Season!! - but the continuity it brings every year, I can remember this being out when I was small in Oxford Mississippi, and then as I grew up it came out of storage every year to grace a tabletop or mantle.... and then when I moved away my Mom waited until I was sort of settled and out of University to pass it on to me, and now I get to have it out every year.....
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There you go sports fans, a little peek at Christmas around my house.  
Thanks for stopping by, do stop again!!

Take care,
edgar

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Oh Tannenbaum

Gentle Friends... the past weekend was a "party heavy" weekend so many places to go and so many people to see...one party we usually get to every year is really over the top... the tree they erect is enormous, and it always has real lit candles, truly phenomenal!!

... this is the tree in the front parlour window over looking Steiner street.  It is amazing what a crowd this will draw during the season - folks out walking, stop and just gaze up from the street.  
This is how it looks with just the regular lights going......

....  here's a shot from the back parlor, you can better see just how big a tree they put up.....

... with the white lights on and lighting the candles....

... the candles all lit and the burned and burned and were going for a good 1/2 hour or more.   Now I've been going to seeing Chris' Christmas parties and seeing hie candlelit trees for the past 20+ years both here and when we were living in Florida and every year when those candles are lit it really knocks me out!!!  It's feels and looks so very old fashioned and totally Christmas.  BTW the candles were ordered from Germany, a country that really knows how to do traditional Christmas!  After the party, walking back to the car we passed this house.....

.... super lights!!
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That does it for today sports fans, thanks for stopping by, do stop again!

Take care,
edgar

Monday, December 14, 2015

A We Have Some Winners

Gentle Friends...I had the "Claw" and a Hound choose the winners...


...and they are, Dede, Barb and Wendy, I've sent emails to the winners for addresses.  
That about wraps up the day sports fan, thanks again for all your kindness and nice words!!!!  
Do stop again!!

Take care,
edgar

Friday, December 11, 2015

"A Christmas Carol" Gift-a-Way

Gentle friends, just a quick reminder of the Gift-a-way I'm having here at the Blacksheep...if you'd like to enter and haven't you can click HERE to go back to the post to leave a comment.  The Hag Claw and Who Hounds will draw the winners over the week end and I'll announce them on Monday's Post.
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I found this great piece of editing on You Tube - it's a compilation of six film versions, 1938, 1951, 1970, 1984, 1992 and 1999... in 4 minutes you can see "A Christmas Carol"...it's pretty fantastic.....

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That wraps up the week sports fans, thanks again for stopping by, and have a super weekend!

Take care,
edgar

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Thrifty Thursday

Gentle Friends, a few fun finds from the weekend.......

 .....  starting from the top, a great old stoneware mixing bowl, a DVD of Rick Steves Christmas Special, a nice little piece of cloisonne, an individual sauce boat in the "Tonquin" pattern, and a super CDV (Carte de Viste) Album.....  I found the album at a Goodwill, and the minute I saw it I knew it was coming home with me.....  even before I found that every page held a super photo, and was identified on the back cover, and on the back of each photo....  there was even a calling card and a Funeral Card stuck inside.....  here are some of the images  form the album.....






....  the Photo's seem to have all been taken around Massachusetts and Connecticut, what a shame that it has left the family, but I am really happy to have guardianship of it for a while.  If anyone knows of these families it would be nice to let them know about these photos of their ancestors.
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That's about it for today sports fans, thanks for stopping by, do stop again!!

Take care,
edgar

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

A Little Christmas Message

Gentle Friends, not much going on around here.....  except some Christmas stuff.... 
 I've not really stitched much in a couple of weeks........ so I'd like to share this....... my disdain for advertising is immense, it drives me crazy quickly.... however this short commercial just tugs at the heart - I think I've watched it about a dozen time and every time it gets me.........  


.....  gotta remember what's important this time of year!!!
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Take care,
edgar

Friday, December 4, 2015

A Couple of Friday Finds

Gentle Friends, with Thanksgiving and all going on and Family in town, all I could remember buying the last couple of weeks were....

....  "The Blue and Gray" is a mini series from the 80's, and the super bras and ebony Victorian crumber was a real find, now, do I need this, can I use this.....  nope and nope.... but isn't it just gorgeous, all hand made and solid as a rock with out any flaw......  how could I pass it up??
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That about wraps up the week sports fans, thanks again for stopping by do stop again.... and ..... have a super weekend!!

Take care,
edgar

Thursday, December 3, 2015

A Little Christmas Gift-a-Way

Gentle Friends....  as you may remember one of my favorite stories is Dickens' "A Christmas Carol" - and this time of year I usually like to have a Drawing and Gift-a-way.....  here's the skinny...

There have been many film adaptations of ACC made over the years... some good , some bad and some just dreadful!!  I thought it would be nice to Gift-a-way two of the best adaptations made... the 1938 version with Reginald Owen playing Scrooge and the 1951 version with 
Alastair Sim as Scrooge....


......  so, if you would like to win a copy of this super film (they are DVD, Region 1) then all you need do is leave a Comment on this post with a way for me to contact you if you win.  Anyone can enter, from any where so long as you can receive Mail.  I'll have the Hag Claw and Who Hounds pick a winner on Saturday the 12th and announce the Winner on Monday 14th......  easy peasy!!
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That about it for today,sports fans -  I'll have a "Friday Finds' post tomorrow..... 
thanks for stopping by do stop again!!

Take care,
edgar

Flashback Friday

Gentle Friends, I've been seeing this piece pop up lately on Social Media and remembered how much I enjoyed stitching it... here's a...