Faith Family Friends

Celebrating the Joy of Living & Home Making ~

Baking, Cooking, Decorating, Tea Time, and taking Inspiration from those I love and the world around me...

A sharing of my heart and my home from a Christian perspective

...with a wee bit of whimsy added.

Monday 20 November 2017

It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year!

You should always be the best decoration in your own house.~ Phoebe Howard 

Hello dear friends and welcome! It is that time of year when we are all thinking about the Holidays. My American friends are celebrating Thanksgiving this week and then they will move right on into the Christmas season. Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

I have done a bit of decorating and I'm anxious to put the tree up. 

Our main tree is going to be upstairs this year in the front window which means we will have to rearrange the furniture. It should look nice from the street.

"It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas..." ~ Meredith Willson, 1951

I know all of you have ornaments that are real treasures because of the memories attached to them. Mine are no different and when I hang each one on the tree I am reminded of that special family member or friend who gifted it to me. 

Some are reminders of a special occasion too which is why I always call my tree my Tree of Memories. 

This was my tree two years ago.

Tea time...

I have a little tea set out today and I'm using my green transferware which I haven't used in a long time. 

These pieces were gifts from my hubby one year.

They are Staffordshire and made in England and I love the colour green! Transferware evokes such old-fashioned charm, don't you think?

A pot of chai tea and a plate of macaroons snuggle up to my pink poinsettia. 

A lovely way to relax and think upon the Christmas season while the music plays softly in the background. 

I have many teacups and saucers and a number of teapots collected over the years. Many of them were gifted to me.

Have you ever really looked at teacups and saucers? There are many similarities among them, yet many differences. Yet...all cups and saucers were designed for a common purpose. Perhaps you have heard and in all probability have even used the phrase, "tea service". You see cups and saucers were created to serve. 
Teacups and friends? The comparison is obvious. We too have many similarities, many differences, many unique characteristics. We are all different, yet all needed. Fortunately, it takes all of us, each with her own gifts and talents, to serve the needs of God's children. 

Next time you pick up a teacup, think of a friend. ~ Linda Gaither

Happiness is the realization
of God in the heart.
Happiness is the result
of praise and thanksgiving,
of faith, of acceptance;
a quiet tranquil realization
of the love of God.~ 
White Eagle from the book "A Book of Joy" by Thomas Kinkade

Thank you, dear ones, for visiting and have a lovely week celebrating with family and friends. God bless you all!

I am joining the following parties this week ~

Tuesday Cuppa Tea
 Friends Sharing Tea
 Share Your Cup Thursday
 Home Sweet Home

Sharing from my heart ~ Sandi

Monday 13 November 2017

Tea With Bambi

Tea is a symbol of friendship and hospitality around the world. - unknown

Hello my lovely friends! The other day we took our car up to Summerside to be serviced and have the winter tires put on. While up there, we paid a visit to a kitchen store I had never been to before but had seen their advertisements on TV. It is actually three stores all joined together; a floral shop, home decor, and kitchen centre. I wish I had my camera with me and alas, I never thought to take pictures with Hubby's phone but what fun! I got this photo off their website and oh my, you should have seen their Christmas trees!! There was one all done in teal and white and it made me swoon!

The store was quite large and all decked out for Christmas. It was that spacious that one didn't have to worry about bumping into things, and they had a sale on which I didn't know about until we got there! Even Hubby enjoyed browsing and he was the only man in there until we were leaving.

I had been looking for a black purse for months and found one there of all places! I am a bit fussy when it comes to purses because I am short in stature with small shoulders so I can't carry a purse that is too big for me. I also have a lot of stuff in my purse so I need several compartments. Are you choosy about your purses?

I always try to get leather because I use a purse for years but this one is made of the same material as a kit bag. It has lots of zippered compartments, a front flap, and a cell phone pocket on the side. It also came with the strap I was looking for and it's just the right size. It's not leather but it was on sale so I was pleased to have found it.

Another thing I had to bring home with me was this darling mother and baby deer/fawn ornament. It is a Ganz ornament, made of resin. 

Whenever I see a fawn I always think of Bambi, and this one was precious. I am tempted to paint spots on the baby's back but I won't.

You have all seen the china deer that my mother gifted me with years ago. This little one I always put on the window sill above the kitchen sink at Christmastime. 

He will be coming out to keep me company in a couple of weeks time.

So, this morning I am enjoying a cup of tea with Bambi and his mom. Would you like to join me?

This beautiful teacup was one of my very first sets. My mother had gifted it to me at my wedding shower. It is Royal Albert and the pattern is called Veronica. It is from the Sheraton series made between 1962 and the 1980s. The cup shape is Montrose and this is one in a series of six. It is one of our favourite colours; robin egg blue or aqua.

A plate of Scotch cookies from the bakery and are they ever good! 

My mother always made Scotch cookies with icing and a cherry on top, for Christmas when I was growing up. And in case a few of you may not know the difference between shortbread and Scotch cookies; the Scottish cookies are firmer and crunchier which I prefer. My hubby dislikes shortbread but he will eat Scotch cookies.

It is just a simple tea today to showcase my new deer ornament. The dried hydrangeas were dropped off to me by a very dear friend.

Somehow, taking tea together encourages an atmosphere of intimacy when you slip off the timepiece of your mind. ~ Gail Greco

The next few weeks are going to be very busy for us all. Shopping, baking, decorating, and sending Christmas cards. Does anyone do that any more? I don't know about you but emails just don't do it for me. I like to receive a pretty card in mail and I enjoy mailing them. However, my Christmas card list is very short compared to twenty years ago and the postage is outrageous, at least here in Canada it is. 

An update on my sweet Auntie P: She isn't making much progress walking so they are waiting for a bed in a nursing home. For me and everyone else, this is very distressing! The fact that she is in New Brunswick and I am here on PEI makes it very difficult. How quickly things have changed in the past year! More than ever I am reminded to make the most of this day because we will never have this day again.

Thank you for visiting today and have a wonderful week. May the Lord be with you and watch over you and your loved ones!

I am joining the following parties as well~

 Tuesday Cuppa Tea
 Friends Sharing Tea
 Share Your Cup Thursday
 Home Sweet Home

Sharing from my heart ~ Sandi

Monday 6 November 2017

When November Comes A-Knocking!

It was November ~ the month of crimson sunsets, parting birds, deep, sad hymns of the sea, passionate wind-songs in the pines. ~ LM Montgomery - Anne of Green Gables

Good morning dear friends! Well, October is gone and a new month is here. When November comes a-knocking it tends to be rather dreary around here until the Christmas lights go up. Almost everyone leaves the decorating until after November 11th in honour of our veterans. After that, the Christmas music will start playing and the lights will be twinkling in every shop window. 

November is the most disagreeable month in the whole year. ~ Louisa May Alcott

I'm sure many folks would agree with that quote because the tree branches are bare, flowers are gone, and there is a sharper nip in the air than the month before. It is no surprise to awaken in the morning and find Jack Frost had paid a visit overnight. It is time to bring out those heavy jackets and coats, hats, scarves, and gloves. Yet today, it is warmer than usual for November. The temp is supposed to get up to a balmy 18 degrees Celsius so I certainly agree with Miss Alcott's quote. It is as though November can't make up its mind this year.

I usually start decorating mid-November and I'm looking forward to replacing the coloured leaves and pumpkins with lights and pretty holiday vignettes. Christmas is my absolute favourite holiday and the decorating always brings to mind wonderful memories of happy times. 

By the middle of the month I hope to have at least one of my fruit cakes made. I always make a dark and a light. At this time of year I always start craving spicy desserts too like the mincemeat tarts which I am serving today with my tea. I just buy my mincemeat in a jar but I try to make my own pastry for the shells because it is so much better. These tarts however are made with frozen pastry shells because I can't use my pastry blender right now. The CTS {carpal tunnel} is causing me quite a bit of grief these days.

When November comes a-knocking, I bring out my Friendly Village china. I'm an old-fashioned gal so these patterns appeal to me in a big way.

 The Covered Bridge

Every piece I have is vintage except for the teapot and milk jug. I love the red buildings set in the stark brown, green and cream background! Like the Johnson Bros. Rose Chintz pattern, I find this Friendly Village just charming. 

So, let's have some tea and tarts, shall we?

The Ice House

This china is so perfect for Autumn and the winter months.

I have four cups and saucers. Two sets which I bought at a shop that was closing so I got them at five dollars each. 

Each piece of Friendly Village depicts a scene from our past; an ice house, a covered bridge, a school house, among other things. A truly old-fashioned pattern which suggests a life of hard work yet such wonderful sentiment.

The School House

It hung on a pail that stood on a stool
By the door of an old-time country school,
And the water it dipped was cool and sweet
Fresh as mountain dew in the schoolroom's heat.
And never was water so good, so cool,
As dipped from the pail of that old-time school,
Along with the schoolhouse of another day,
The common tin dipper has passed away. - Margaret Neel

I am so glad that they have captured these olden day scenes under a glaze to be enjoyed forever.

Tea is quiet and our thirst for tea is never far from our craving for beauty. ~ James Norwood Pratt

Sugar Maples teapot

As I sip my cup of tea I can't help but reflect upon the days of my childhood. With the Christmas season nearing, I tend to become very sentimental. I suppose a lot of us are like that around this time of year.

Many of you have seen the old pancake jug that my Granny used. It was once used by my great-great grandmother so it is well over one hundred years old. To some it may not be very pretty. There is a small chip in the handle and a crack in the body but to me it represents a life of hard work and the love of family. The fact that my beloved Granny used it makes it very precious!

I can still picture my Granny stirring up her pancakes in that jug and pouring the batter into the cast iron frying pan. She made stacks of pancakes and served them with baked beans every Saturday night for my mother, my Auntie P, and the rest of her family. Oftentimes my Granny fed a few boarders and a neighbour or two as well. For years, after Granny went on to her reward, my Auntie P kept the jug on display in her home until she passed it on to me. Today I use it to display my ivy in. Such wonderful memories are attached to that jug!

Memories are timeless treasures of the heart. -unknown

Savouring my hot cup of tea in an old-fashioned teacup and thinking about my childhood fills me with a sense of nostalgia which is hard to put into words. I only know how thankful I am for the blessing of a warm loving home and family, a warm cup of tea, and such lovely memories.

My beloved Auntie P took a very bad fall and has been in the hospital for a week now. I would appreciate your prayers for her.

My middle boy has a birthday tomorrow, on the 7th, so I am thinking about him today. Happy Birthday, Sweetheart! He lives out on the west coast so we won't be able to celebrate together. He is however very close in my heart.

The picture on the left is him giving his speech at his brother's wedding in July and the one on the right is when he was home in August.

I am also very sad to learn of the shooting in a Texas church yesterday. Our world seems to have gone mad and we pray for peace. When I was growing up I never heard of such things taking place, yet today our children and grandchildren hear about these tragedies every other day. Our little ones live in a different world today unfortunately. God bless them and keep them safe!

So today I am thankful for a quiet cup of tea and beautiful memories I keep tucked away and bring out every now. 

So where are your thoughts taking you this morning?

I am joining the following parties as well~

Tuesday Cuppa Tea
 Friends Sharing Tea
 Share Your Cup Thursday
 Home Sweet Home

 Sharing from my heart ~ Sandi