Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween & Beggar's Night


Trick or Treat!

It's Beggar's Night!


It's Halloween
by Harry Behn

Tonight is the night
when dead leaves fly
like witches on switches
across the sky.
When elf and sprite flit
through the night on a moony sheen...

It's Halloween!

Tonight is the night
when leaves make a sound
like a gnome in his home under the ground
when spooks and trolls
creep out of their holes,
all mossy and green...
It's Halloween!

Tonight is the night
when pumpkins stare
through sheaves and leaves everywhere
when ghoul and ghost and gobline host
dance round their queen...
It's Halloween!


(I learned the above song/poem in the 3rd grade and have been
 singing it to my extended family every since then!)
Just ask them. They will roll their eyes and nod yes, indeed!

I sing it all year for some bizarre reason I cannot understand,
it just sticks in my head! 

Pumpkin carving by Delaney - age 11 




Many are just DYING to stay here!
(Insert sinister evil laughter here.)

One of my daughters' fav Halloween kid's movies
of all time is called The Worst Witch.

It's an adorable, silly, low-budget, dorky 80s HBO special.

It conjours up the BEST memories for them and me... it's just so bad it's good. much, in fact, that my eldest made herself
and husband cute costumes from it
 a couple years ago and shared it here 
 back when she used to blog.

(She really did a really fabulous job on those costumes.)


There is a part in that movie that has Tim Curry saying 
"Spooky, scary," except Tim Curry says it more as:


We love that and say it anytime we think something is scary,
it's not just reserved for Halloween time around here.

Hope your Halloween is an innocently fun "fright" night!

~~And may our loving God keep you safe!~~

WOW us Wednesday


Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Halloween Candy Party Favors

Last week when we hosted our annual
 I received the sweetest hostess gift
 my daughter made for us.

She brought one for each family.




As always, thanks so much for visiting!

First Day of Snow

Last week I was in shorts, a tee and walking around
 the gardens in my barefeet.

It was mid to high 70s and perfect.

Today, upon my waking,
this is what I found awaiting me outside:

My, how quickly things change sometimes.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Mary's Amazing Tea Luncheon!


Please join me as I share the most delightful and exquisite
 birthday TEA PARTY that my friend Mary D. in Indiana- hosted for me nearly a month ago. Sorry for the delay getting it to you but for Breast Cancer Awareness and Halloween I wanted the timing to be perfect! 

This is an amazing lady who just has the magic touch - her parties are the BEST - just look and see what I mean!

Grab yourself a nice cuppa and relax,
you're gonna want to savor this post!

She went ALL OUT and thought of every single detail!
The autumnesque tablescape, the food, the favors, the company - everything was spot-on perfect!
Just take a look at this amazing tablescape!

Pulled-thread linen tablecloth
Green plaid & paisley cotton placemats
crystal goblets
Leopard print chargers
Various harvest painted ceramic or gold plates
Scalloped wavy glass salad plates
Vintage flatware
Wavy solid white classic cups saucers & 3 tier plates

And the best part is that she truly is the QUEEN of thrifting
and every single item was a treasured find
 at auctions and secondhand stores!
To me she will always be the ORIGINAL Get The Look for Less Gal!
She was soooooooooooo a thrifter
 before it was way cool
 to be a thrifter!

So we started with this fabulous salad
Greens with orange and cashews and bacon and apples
Next came a choice of Tomato Basil or Creamy Squash soup.

And 6 plates of delicious savories to choose from:
Asian Pot Stickers
Florettes with cream cheese & pumpkin butter
Chicken Salad Croissants
English Cucumer Tea Sandwiches
Egg Salad on Rye
Pesto Cheese and Tomato on Ciabatta


I know, I know, we ALL could have stopped there, right?
But wait.....there's more!

There's the SWEETS!
Mary's amazing scones!

And light-as-air pretty Meringes.....


....and the prettiest birthday cake ever.

And a didn't get a good shot of it. Ugh.
But you can tell how pretty it was.

(So much so that she used it as her centerpiece!)

With my favvie fav - Salty Caramel Ice Cream!

What a day - what a luncheon - what an amazing friend!

She could so write a tea party book.
She's that good.

She makes it look effortless - which is the true key to good hostessing!


Thank you Mary D.
 from the bottom of my heart.
 You are the BEST!


After this we all went to the antique mall, then to Pam D's for a girlie girl slumber party! She had room enough for all of us and one of those media basements with the leather theatre seats and we stayed up till 3am watching things like The Sound of Music! The following day she had an entire spread of breakfast breads, fruit, yogurt, coffee, tea, even a whole plate of bacon (private joke)! 

Each bed had the most amazing favors for us - oh thank you so much, Pam!!!

I could kick myself for not getting a single shot of her amazing home and how she fussed over us!

After our hearty breakfast we thrifted till we could shop no more!

Then we had lunch together and then everyone called it a day.


Thank you, Pam D.
from the bottom of my heart.
You are the BEST TOO!

I am so blessed to have spent precious time
 with these wonderful tea "sisters":

Auntie Pam


Sunday, October 28, 2012

My poor sick kitty

Many of you readers may remember my sharing how much I love my rescue kitty Romeo.

I have blogged about him a few times - and invite anyone not familiar with him to go to the subject tab on the right side of my blog and look up Kitty - and get to know this sweet fella.

He really is the sweetest, most gentle and BEST CAT EVER.

Remember how we always lovingly refer to him as "Lumbar Kitty" because his favorite spot to lounge is behind me when I sit at the pc?

He is really fighting something tough and we sure would appreciate if you could send up some good thoughts and prayers for him.

He somehow scratched his eye and it very quickly became infected.
He is on 4 kinds of medicine - 2 antibiotics and 2 kinds of pain reliever.
He has to wear his Cone of Shame (family funny but not so funny now.)
He has to be given doses of artificial tears.
He had to get his eye scraped 2 times, ugh, ouch.

He is now at the vet again (DH took him for another follow up) for the 5th time this week.

They say if it doesn't get better soon he may have to go see a specialist and may actually lose his eye.


Blessing of Animals
by Kevin E. Mackin, O.F.M.

As autumn arrives, people in various places may notice something odd.
A procession of animals, everything from dogs and cats to hamsters and even horses, is led to churches for a special ceremony called the Blessing of Pets. This custom is conducted in remembrance of St. Francis of Assisi’s love for all creatures. feast of Saint Francis Francis, whose feast day is October 4th, loved the larks flying about his hilltop town. He and his early brothers, staying in a small hovel, allowed themselves to be displaced by a donkey. Francis wrote a Canticle of the Creatures, an ode to God’s living things. “All praise to you, Oh Lord, for all these brother and sister creatures.” And there was testimony in the cause for St. Clare of Assisi’s canonization that referred to her little cat! That there are today over 62 million cats in the U.S. attests to the continuing affection we have for our furry, feathered or finned friends. We've even had a cat called Socks in the White House. Other popular presidential pets range from Abraham Lincoln’s Fido to Lyndon Johnson’s beagles, named Him and Her. For single householders, a pet can be a true companion. Many people arrive home from work to find a furry friend overjoyed at their return. Many a senior has a lap filled with a purring fellow creature. The bond between person and pet is like no other relationship, because the communication between fellow creatures is at its most basic. Eye-to-eye, a man and his dog, or a woman and her cat, are two creatures of love. No wonder people enjoy the opportunity to take their animal companions to church for a special blessing. Church is the place where the bond of creation is celebrated. At Franciscan churches, a friar with brown robe and white cord often welcomes each animal with a special prayer. The Blessing of Pets usually goes like this: “Blessed are you, Lord God, maker of all living creatures. You called forth fish in the sea, birds in the air and animals on the land. You inspired St. Francis to call all of them his brothers and sisters. We ask you to bless this pet. By the power of your love, enable it to live according to your plan. May we always praise you for all your beauty in creation. Blessed are you, Lord our God, in all your creatures! Amen.”

Thank you!


Your prayers have REALLY HELPED!  Our kitty Romeo is getting better! He doesn't have to lose his eye but he has lost some sight in it, and it is cloudy - but he IS showing some use of it, though limited - this is REALLT great news. Thank you all so much for your care and prayer!


Michele, her DH and Romeo most especially!  

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Garden Angel in the Leaves

Wordless shadows.
Have a fabulous weekend, everyone!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Last Hurrah for the Garden

Yesterday I wrote about taking tea outdoors
 in the most incredibly perfect weather
 we have seen in a long long time.
I hope you were able to read that post,
 because I was sharing tea with you!
I also shared some mums and such,
 But wait!
 There's MORE!

 Purple Astor


I took pics of the last of the flora
with more than a twinge of sadness
 to know it truly is the last of it until springtime.....

.....such as this surprise rose that bloomed
 with the weird Indian Summer we were having -

One lone pink surprise to find - a Knock-out rose bloom!

 I write now in the past tense because today is grey,
 much colder and is looking like rain!
 I cannot believe 24 hours ago I was barefoot
 and enjoying my tea outdoors!


Not much survived our 3 days of killing frost from 2 weeks ago
but this was under the roof of the Zen Room
and it is still alive showing its pretty pink!

Pink Impatiens

This definately was the year for mums
for me around here!

Just look at these beauties!

Yellow mums - anniversary gift from hubs in September

White mums - birthday gift from my little sister

It was fun replanting and trying to figure out
which colour flowers would look best
 in which kind of container!

Pink mums from daughter's MIL, my friend Patricia

Containers are so nice for mums
because they're (usually) easily moved out of harm's way
when those killing frosts threaten!

And mums are SO hardy and transplantable -
 they make wonderful bushes the following year
 if you have space for them!

They do come back and grow really fast!

Thanks for visiting!

Visit other beautiful flowers below:



Thursday, October 25, 2012

Taking Time for Tea

Oh this is such glorious "Indian Summer" weather-
a perfect 72 degrees with a nice breeze blowing.
So, naturally come tea time I had to
enjoy it outdoors today!

As for my tea break - I kept it simple, as I usually do.

I simply cut up some brownies I had baked earlier,
brewed up a nice pot of loose-leaf Earl Grey
and brought it outdoors, along with a wonderful magazine.



I truly wish you were here sipping with me!
Our little covered patio "Zen Room"
is the perfect place to take tea.
It stays shady most of the day but - you can see the sun starting to come around the house illuminating the west end of the nest.
This happily situated room faces full west,
 and is a wonderful place to watch sunset.
The patio has taken on more of a fall look lately
with it's mums and afghan throw
and bits of pretty Autumn colours in the background.


Just beyond those mums and that tied-back curtain
 is this lovely tree below,
sharing its majestic beauty for us to enjoy.


Life is pretty awesome in moments such as these.


And perfect weather days are a true blessing,
as we  have very few of them here.
Ah, the true bliss of an Indian Summer day!



~~~Emily Dickinson~~~

These are the days when birds come back,
A very few, a bird or two,
To take a backward look.
These are the days when skies put on
The old, old sophistries of June, -
A blue and gold mistake.
Oh, fraud that cannot cheat the bee,
Almost thy plausibility
Induces my belief,
Till ranks of seeds their witness bear,
And softly through the altered air
Hurries a timid leaf!
Oh, sacrament of summer days,
Oh, last communion in the haze,
Permit a child to join,
Thy sacred emblems to partake,
Thy consecrated bread to break,
Taste thine immortal wine!
Also, please join me in prayer for all those affected by
 Hurricane Sandy at this time.



Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Pumpkin Carving Party

Every single year for 16 years I have hosted
 our family's Pumpkin Carving Party.
It's a big 'ole fun tradition to us!
We held it a mite early this year as with our busy schedules
 it is the only time all of us really could get together. 


Spice cake buttercream chesse frosting cupcakes!

With bat sprinkles. Naturally.


Some years we've had more formal
 sit-down meals with all the fixings.
Other years it's been pizza delivery
 or hot dogs/burgers from our grill.
This year was easy - a large take-out bucket of fried chicken, rolls, homemade mashed potatoes, homemade chicken gravy,
green beans & carrots.

Good 'ole country comfort eat'n.

Of course I was so busy I forgot to take a picture
of the feast! (Insert a blog frown here.)
And this year I even went one step easier -
 I (gasp) purchased disposable throw-aways -
 something I seldom do because of the wastefulness ...
 but sometimes TIME means more to me than being green.
 (I hang my head in shame and avoid looking at Evelyn.)
(It sure looked cute and festive once it was all set up!)
There's been years when I didn't do
 the food thing at all-  just appetizers.....
and one year all we served was desserts.
It always just depends on our schedules and times, etc.

(But it sure isn't the food that makes our party, anyway!)

It's the laughter and fun of all being together.
It's the smell of apple cider and Autumn candles burning.

It's the aroma of freshly gutted pumpkins.
It's the bonfires and occassional marshmallow roasting.


It's the crisp night air when we line up our Jack O'Lanterns
 on the back fence for that final group pic of them
before everyone heads home with their amazing new works of art.

It's the memories we make year after year. 



It's going from some-not-even-being born yet, 
to now being 11 of us for this tradition!
Michael - my DH (dear husband)
Michele - (<--me of course)
Evelyn - (our eldest daughter)
Son-in-law Daniel
Katie - (our youngest - moved back from Cali finally

~and my sister and her family~ 
Teresa - (my little sister)
Pat - (her hubs)
Tony - 16
Darien - 13
Delaney - 11
Reagan - 9

------->KITTY'S KOZY KITCHEN<-------

BTW- Michael's Jack O' Lantern is an electrical outlet plug -
because they DO look like faces!

And mine is the rare unhappy face for me - it was supposed to be angry and spooky but it turned out irritated, haha, oops. Perhaps it was Freudian because I forgot to take a pic of the pretty table all laid out for this post. You know how we bloggers can get when we forget!



Also be sure to check out Sandi's
brand new linky party - #1!
Rose Chintz Cottage