A Thoughtful November

I’ve been in a comtemplative mood this month. I encourage us to carry each others burdens, be mindful of our thankfulness, and shared a few reasons I’m thankful.

Besides those heavy topics, posts ran the gamut from nutcrackers to laundry soap with a brand-new shower thrown in for a little excitement. I am obsessed with the morning skies of winter randomly posting pictures and a collage just for fun. And while my family may be camera shy, my dogs certainly aren’t; they try to weasel their way into all the photos.

So here’s a run down of this month plus a little more for all you wonderful people who stop by and keep me motivated with your kind words.

I picked up six new (to me) nutcrackers in Marching Into the Season. They were from the same collection I purchased three from this summer. I’m amazed at the awesome stuff you can find on local Facebook pages, and with December here, those nutcrackers are guarding the fireplace as I write. Over the weekend, Cost Plus had a set of three 14-inch,traditional nutcrackers on sale for $55. All I can tell you is that I got a screaming deal off the trading post.

Nutcrackers 2

My mom’s 70th birthday would have been this past October 29. She’s been gone for over eight years now. Perhaps that’s why the new grave at the cemetery at the end of October made me so sentimental. In Past the Old Cemetery, I talked about the strange way living down the street from this landmark has made me more compassionate and encouraged me to share in others’ sorrows. I thought a picture of a cemetery would be creepy and it was a cold, foggy day, so I posted my first sunrise picture. Then on Thanksgiving, once the turkey was in the oven, I posted another thoughtful post about being Thankful and another sunrise photo. Perhaps every time I get sentimental, I’ll post a sunrise? This blog is better than therapy. Then, somewhere in the middle when I was talking about this and that, I shared foggy morning photos. If you don’t like what I write, you can always just look at the pretty pictures.

Morning Sky Collage

If you’re not into scenic views, maybe you like shower remodels better. That by far was the most viewed post this month. After the Tile Update, the MR worked hard and delivered a beautiful shower in time for Sweet Miss’ visit home. When your 16-year-old daughter is taking photos of her shower and showing it to her friends, you know That’s Some Shower. This is the MR’s fourth shower remodel and may be the best one yet.

shower 045

I remember in our first house, the MR unhooked the plumbing on our only shower and promptly went to bed for two days with the flu wracked with fever and chills–oh, the good old days. He also soaked our shower head in vinegar overnight to get rid of the hard water build up. It worked like a charm.

It is November, so we didn’t have a lot of gardening going on, but our decorative tree finally started Putting on a Show rather than looking scraggly.

Flowers Up Close

I just hope next summer it will look as good. I did get my soil test results, but let’s save that for another day.

The sink for the powder room finally arrived in one piece–the third times a charm–in Special Delivery. I hung up the prints I’d been embarrassed to see sitting on the floor and replaced them with a sink in the entry. You never know what you’ll find around here.

One of my more random projects this month was my search for bright whites. Yes, I made my own laundry soap. While I haven’t noticed a huge difference, it was super cheap. I was pleasantly surprised when one of my readers wrote that she’s been using Mom’s Super Laundry sauce for years. She encouraged me to add vinegar or hydrogen peroxide to boost the whiteness. Now that Sweet Miss is finished with all her laundry and back at school, I’ll have to give it a try.

My cozy sweater pillow is just one example of how I let something simple spiral out of control in my mind. Just try it. It’s OK if you have to go with plan B; in fact plan B might be even better.

sweater pillow up close

Just because I didn’t have enough yarn to cover the entire pillow didn’t mean I had to leave my cover languishing in a cupboard for months. Fleece was a perfectly good alternative backing. If you don’t knit or crochet, this could be a great way to give life to that old favorite sweater with a hole in the sleeve.

Finally, my Thankfulness Tree was a hit. OK, so maybe I was the most frequent submitter–surprise, surprise–but I twisted a few arms and everybody ended up writing something except for maybe the MR and Papa, but that’s to be expected. I even received cooperation from Baby Girl’s friends and the extras who came home with Sweet Miss for Thanksgiving. When we were packing the Thanksgiving decor and dragging out the Christmas stuff, I packed up all our thankfulness notes from this year and put them in the storage bin. Now, we’ll have reminders of what was special each year–who doesn’t love good cake, supportive parents, laughter, and pseudo families? This is a tradition I’m going to keep. One of the great things about the project was that all I did was add branches to our existing fall tablescape and set out notes and pens. It was so simple and made me smile each time I walked by.

We celebrated Thanksgiving with the four of us Papa Willy and two of Sweet Miss’ friends from school. While it was a much smaller gathering than last year, this year, we dealt with some food allergies. That meant two kinds of rolls, three kinds of stuffing, two kinds of gravy, and two kinds of green bean casserole. Thankfully, it was only one turkey, and the MR carved it to perfection.

The Turkey

Sweet Miss set a beautiful table. When I was pulling out the large cutting board, I came across this box of pilgrim hats the girls made over 10 years ago. It was fun to be able to add them to our little gathering.

Thanksgiving table

Apparently, no one likes pumpkin pie, so we went with gluten-free chocolate cake that was fabulous. No one seems to have missed out.

Our Gathering

Baby Girl was the only one to go Black Friday shopping. She came back with some great deals and a lost phone. I’m not sure she’d still consider the evening a success. We went to a local tree farm and cut down a 10-footer. I told the MR we should have had boys. Sweet Miss’ boyfriend and his buddy cut down the tree lickety-split and even carried it to the car. I didn’t have to hold the tree and get a face full of needles as the MR got it set up. It was nice to have a few extra hands helping. They did end up watching football instead of decorating with my girls, but they’re welcome any time.

After my oldest being gone for two months, it was so nice to have our little family back together again. The next two weeks will zoom past and Christmas will be here before we know it. Speaking of Christmas, decorating calls.

How was your Thanksgiving? Did you enjoy time with friends and family? Is your tree up? 


One thought on “A Thoughtful November

  1. What a beautiful blog both in word and photos. We could all feel the joy you were feeling with your whole family and friends around you. We were with friends at a really nice restaurant in town. We missed having leftovers, but they served huge portions, so did bring some of those home, not the same though.
    We did put the tree up, and all our presents are wrapped and mailed off the last one yesterday. Went to a Christmas party last night, and we are packing as we speak to spent the next 10 days in Vegas while I help a friend with her photography booth at Cowboy Christmas during the National Rodeo Finals. So looking forward to a really fun time. Not sure what Papa will be doing all that time, but he will find something fun to do we both know.

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