Welcome to My Red Cape. Long ago in another time my husband Jack and I lived in a little old red house. It was the stuff of dreams to us for the few years that we were there. I live there still a number of hours every day in imagination, with old dolls and paintings and fabrics and feather trees. I draw inspiration and happiness from the memories of that space in time and share some of it here with friends who remember how to step with Alice through the looking glass and take delight in whimsies and antiquities. ~Edyth O’Neill

Monday, December 29, 2014

More art minded in 2015

I hope to go back to my painting this year.  I am happy at it.  I truly love paint and the application of it.  Even so, it seems such a waste of time as there is no need for more little oil paintings of a mediocre sort.  The world is full of millions of them!  Jack said to think of it like golf, just enjoy the doing of it and strive to get better as you do it, whatever the definition of better may be.   That goes down hard for me as I am a production minded person.    I wrote my brother this and here is his reply:  (My brother is a writer among other talents.)

I agree with Jack. I think our happiest moments are those in which we are lost (or found) in creation. Completely "in the zone" of creating something that didn't exist before. Not every seed will sprout, not every sprout will grow, but in the moments of preparing the soil, planting the seed, and tending the sprout, there is hope and joy. Each plant which survives may then thrive. Not all will be beautiful, not all will be strong, but together they make a more beautiful patch of earth. Likewise with your paintings, among which will be the ones that make you very happy. But you won't know which ones until you pick up the paintbrushes and enter that creative, timeless zone.
Pictures show a gorgeous old house on one of the prettiest farms in our county, where I attended a great party yesterday.  There are many painting possibilities there! 

Here comes 2015, I am a happy person grateful for many blessings.  e

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Pardon me, I had to show a grandchild!

Actually a great grand.   Here is Macy with a pacifier and an I pad.  She is a force of nature!   e

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Christmas parties in my home

A Christmas party is such a natural, because the house is already done up and people are already in a holiday mood. Yesterday's block party went so nicely and people seemed to have a great time. They all just talked and talked and continued to graze off the table so I could tell it was going well. I cleaned up and washed everything and got in bed a little after 7!

Before the party I moved all the antique chairs out and hid them, 5 went in my shower! I opened the sunporch and had extra seating there for 9.

Table almost at the ready, a little more was added.. and the pitcher held punch without bubbly and the bowl with.

Cheryl stayed through the party yesterday and so did one of the couples, to help me with people. We had one on a walker and several with canes.Cheryl is so sweet with Anna her next door neighbor who is in her 90's. Anna has lived in many places, moved here from New York, is originally from somewhere in the Balkans I think. She was dressed so pretty and had her hair done and took on over the antiques. This block is mostly a retirement enclave, but two couples are younger and working still. Martin and Maria are beautiful and so loving. Maria made a great cake for yesterday.  Our newest couple on the block, brought a little wrapped plate of fudge for each one of us!  She teaches and he is writing a book this year. Many of my neighbors volunteer heavily in the community. 
This will be another sweet day.

A post script now added for Sunday's party:
 Same song Second Verse.

 I had 28 people in for Punch and cookies on Sunday afternoon, 2 til 5, which stretched till after 6.   This was for a few friends and family and so enjoyable.  I will hope to do this one again next year and larger.  I put out fresh foods and made new punch and set the sled full of poinsettias by the front door again.   Last night I put away foods, washed the punch bowl and tray and small silver pieces, and made a start at cleaning up all the rest. Today I will put the house back in order a bit and  turn on music and just relax the rest of the way into Christmas.  There is a little Asti Spumonti left and a lot of cookies.  Hope all of you are having a sweet Holiday Season. e

A great granddaughter and a granddaughter

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Friends in for a Christmas gathering

After touring Penny's and Barbara's homes, about a dozen friends made a stop by my house.  Most had far to drive home so it was brief but pleasant.

Steiff Friends

The wire wrapped blue glass bird is the only ornament I added this year.

Republican Bears with their Elephant Friend, supporting the Second Amendment.  The boy doll is a Voit of about 1845, wearing a red wool suit dating to civil war years.

Helen and I played dolls a bit, discussing Tansy/Tabby she made years back, and little Phoebe, a doll of Helen's making which I showed in a recent post. Helen had several outstanding dolls with her, among them a huge Queen Ann  bust.  Some will call this one a Georgian.  She is a rare early doll to see and enjoy. She told me many things as I photographed her on my sun porch. I wish I could hear and understand all of her stories!  This doll has seen history happen!   e

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

My Favorite Antique Christmas Tree Ever!

I have seen a number of lovely trees filled with antique ornaments but none has excited me quite as much as this one! Christmas collector and decorating maven Barbara has done it again.  What a special joy to be invited to see the Christmas decorating in her home this year, a visual treat for friends and family.  There are lovely vignettes in each room, many of them just Christmas touches added to the pieces she uses in that spot all year long.  These in the large light airy kitchen are good examples:
 Barbara's favorite color (and mine!) is blue green to robin's egg blue. Through out her home this color reappears next to its complement yellow.

A collection of treasures from Maine needs only the addition of a few sprigs of greenery to take on the spirit of the season. 

The long dining table that seats a dozen takes on Christmas shine. Other charming arrangements are everywhere in this lovely house.

To gain height in the snowman pyramid, a round tray and a wooden compote were used under the feather tree.

Each small house has one or more tiny china figures attached. These little buildings are so rarely found intact now! Barbara collected them years ago. I am showing just a fraction of them. Friend Judy hooked the Santa pillow.

Here is the tree that won my heart.  As a toy collector the sweet old baby tender is naturally appealing to me, with it's seat for the baby plus four legs with wheels and a charming little wooden horse head.  The surround which holds the child in the tender would never have registered for me as a Christmas tree fence, but Barbara saw this and placed a feather tree in it!.  The old scrap ornaments and weighed candle holders with their red candles finish a gorgeous little tree.

A House ready for the grown children and precious grandchildren who will soon fill it.   e

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