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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, 15 July 2019

Christmas in July

I will honour Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all year. ~ Charles Dickens

Hello my lovely friends! I decided to do one more post before my son comes home for a visit. My grandson is also coming home on the weekend so I'm pretty happy!

It's July and I haven't done a Christmas in July post for a while so I thought now would be a good time. I know many of us like to celebrate this in the middle of summer. Christmas is always such a happy time. Even Hallmark has dedicated the month of July to feature their Christmas movies. 

Do you know where Christmas in July originated? Well, I looked it up and apparently the precise beginnings of the celebration is not very clear. Some say it began in Europe while others claim it started 84 years ago at a summer camp in North Carolina. Still others claim it began at another time and in a different place.

Regardless of when it actually started, oftentimes we here in the northern hemisphere crave the cooler temperatures of wintertime when we are sweating and uncomfortable from the heat and humidity. Well, to be honest, I don't crave the wintertime but it seems many do. 
We are less than six months from Christmas and we miss the holiday spirit and other traditions that the holiday season evokes. That ultimately leads folks to thoughts of the holiday season and Christmas trees, gift giving, and yes, even snow. I like to think that during the holiday season, there is just a little bit more love and caring for others being shed abroad in our hearts, don't you? 


Some of you like to put up a little tree in celebration of this event. I don't have mine up this year because I'm busy preparing for my company. However, my four foot tree trimmed in robin egg blue, pink, and gold would make an excellent tree for this occasion.


This time of year I always think of my father because his birthday was in July and he adored Christmas. He passed his love for Christmas and all its magic on to me.

Celebrate love. It is the breath of your existence and the best of all reasons for living. ~ Author unknown 


My father adored Old Country Roses. It was his favourite china pattern so I am using it today in memory of him.
One year, my sweet hubby gifted me with this vintage OCR teacup on my Daddy's birthday in remembrance of him.


"I believe I could be a model child if I were just invited out to tea every day." ~ Anne Shirley of Anne of Green Gables - LM Montgomery

My family gifted me with the OCR teapot for my birthday a few years ago. These pieces are very special to me in many ways and I know my father would have been delighted that I have them! 



I love how Royal Albert pays such attention to detail like the gold leaf on the handle. 


...and a bouquet of roses on the spout. 

Most of my OCR pieces are gifts from family members. 


Please help yourself to a tea sandwich. There is both egg and chicken salad; my favourites for tea time.


My light fruit cake, mince tarts, and donut holes make up this plate of treats. The fruit cake and donuts were my grandmother's recipes.

One of our Christmas traditions was Daddy and I would make donuts together. I would make up the batter and cut them out and he would slip them carefully into the lard and watch them closely. Some we left plain and some we sugared, while others we covered in cinnamon sugar. After he passed, I continued to make them by myself. Now my hubby helps me because it can be a big job as I still make everything from scratch. They are old-fashioned donuts and you can't buy those in a bakery.

I usually make sticky date pudding twice a year; once at Christmas and once during the summer. So we will have some today.


This rich date pudding is so scrumptious sitting in a warm pool of toffee sauce.

Everyone loves my sugar plum cookies so I always freeze some. I took some out to enjoy with our tea.

Here we have a plate of sugar plums, gingerbread, and pumpkin nut bread.



You know, we are all blessed with special people in our lives and my father was one of those people. He taught me what was important in life and he took me to church every Sunday. It's a pity  he didn't live long enough to see how his grandchildren turned out. He would have been so proud to know that one of his great grandchildren has been named after him.

I wish we could put up some of the Christmas spirit in jars and open a jar of it every month. ~ Harlan Miller

I hope I have inspired you to celebrate a little Christmas in July. It could be as simple as decorating a little tree or hanging a wreath. You might bake a treat you only make at Christmastime. Maybe you could do something nice and unexpected for that little old lady in the nursing home who you know never has visitors. Or surprise someone special with a little something "just because." How about a movie night with a loved one and sip hot chocolate while watching one of Hallmark's lovely Christmas movies? 

I think it's nice to have a break in the summertime when we can remember how beautiful Christmas is! It is not only the happiest time of year but it is also a time when others go out of their way a little more to make someone else feel special. It is showing good will toward men. Would that it could last all year!

Christmas is a time to open our hearts to God and His gifts. Just like the rest of the year. ~ Author unknown

Thank you so much for your visit and I'll see you when I get back in August. Till then, take care and enjoy your summer. Hugs to all.

Sharing from my heart ~ Sandi

16 comments :

  1. What a delightful post honoring your Dad! I love OCR and have a few pieces, too! My husband gifted me with the teapot and creamer and sugar bowl one year for our anniversary. (we were fortunate to have a Royal Doulton outlet near us!)

    I'd love to enjoy afternoon tea with you, and your Anne quote made me smile.

    Enjoy your family, Sandi! See you when you return!

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  2. What a beautiful post! My eyes filled with tears reading about your dad. He sounds like a lovely man. Mine died nine years ago. I miss him everyday.

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  3. Amazing post!I am glad I stopped by!Made my day...Hugs!

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  4. I loved your Christmas in July post, Sandi, and reading if your memories of your beloved dad. He would love knowing how your hubby gifted you that teacup in memory of your dad. I’m sure your dad is smiling from heaven knowing one of his grandsons is named after him.
    I hope you have a joyful week when your son and grandson arrive!! 😘🤗

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  5. Dear Sandi:
    What a fun post as we have been watching a lot of the Christmas in July Hallmark's at night. We are going to have one day this week way up in the 90's so your post is refreshing! I hope you have some lovely family time!

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  6. This post made me smile, Sandy. Love the beautiful OCR! Unfortunately, I don't have the Hallmark channel so I can't enjoy their Christmas in July movies.

    I'm hoping to do a pop-up tea at the office this week...maybe I'll do a "Christmas in July" pop-up tea. Now I gotta look for the seasonal teas in my cupboard.

    Enjoy your family's visit. August will be here before we know it!

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  7. I have been doing some Christmas stitching. I hope to have a lot of new ornaments stitched and finished by December. I love Old Country Roses china...it Is so delicate and refined. Your plate of goodies looks delicious.

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  8. Sandi so happy yo it r son and grandson are coming to visit. Family and taking time to visit is so important.

    Your desserts always sound delicious especially with the warm toffee sauce.

    Cindy

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  9. Thank you for the lovely post and photos and yummy food! I wish we could have met while I was living on the island. We lived there for almost 9 years. I miss it very much and my house! :-) My husband and I left a year ago to move back to the States. We are now in South Carolina (originally from MA). It is very hot here and not my cup of tea, but that's where the LORD put us. And we are close to family again. Your posts are always beautiful! :-) Thanks!

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    1. Thank you, Linda. You know I have always wanted to go to South Carolina. I have learned about it reading the tea shop mysteries because the story takes place in S.C. Maybe someday! As you know it seldom gets too hot here although last summer was an exception. Blessings!

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  10. I never thought of putting a Christmas tree up in July. What a great idea! We have a young friend who is just getting started in the film business. He has made a new film for Christmas and we are seeing a showing of it tomorrow night. So that will be Christmas in July! Such lovely memories of your dad. xo

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  11. Sandi,
    Thanks so much for stopping by!! I love all of your OCR pieces and how precious that most of them were gifts from family making them even more special!! Love your Christmas in July Tree!! It touched my heart how you honored your dad in this post, I understand too how you feel about him not getting to see his grandsons grown. My Dad passed away when my sons were only 3 and 5 years old.... Have a wonderful time off with your family and I look forward to seeing you in August or whenever you are ready to come back to Blogland!!
    Hugs,
    Dev

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  12. Sandi, the tea sandwiches are my favorite part of afternoon tea, and yours look wonderful. I often have egg and/or chicken on the three-tiered stand. How lovely to use your Old Country Roses in memory of your father. I always think of my dear friends who first served me on their OCR decades ago and then gifted me with their set two years ago. I love it that you and your father made doughnuts together, and now your husband helps you make them!

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  13. Oh, Sandi, I so enjoyed your Christmas in July today. Sure enjoyed the tea and all the goodies you served. And it was lovely to hear about those special traditions you and are dad used to do together. Such treasured memories. My mom has the Old Country Roses set and I have always loved it. She gave me several teacups and the teapot recently. She said, I know you are the tea party girl. I treasure them.

    Here's wishing you a beautiful rest of the week...
    Brenda xox

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  14. I never heard of Christmas in July but I love this idea so much!

    My blog

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I am delighted to have you visit me and I read every comment. Please forgive me for not being able to visit you all as there are so many of you lovely bloggy friends now. I will visit as much as possible. I wish you a day filled with JOY!

Also, due to the amount of spam I've been getting, I have had to set Comment Moderation. ~ Sandi