Christmas Home Tour 2015

Well, Merry Christmas to you my dear Sugar Pie! I’m so happy you stopped by for a little Christmas cheer! I hope that you feel encouraged and uplifted in your visit with me!  This is such busy time of year and we need time to stop and smell the Christmas tree!  As you read this post and take a peek at how I “decked the halls” of my home may you feel refreshed as we reflect on the reason for the season together. So go grab a hot cup of something yummy girlfriend, kick off your shoes and get comfy-cozy for this arm-chair tour of Sugar Pie Farmhouse.

As I was decorating my home for Christmas I kept thinking of the words Merry & Bright and Comfort & Joy. Those were the exact sentiments I wanted to fill my home with so my family and friends would feel the love behind the all of the lights, sparkles, and whimsey.

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I love decorating with red and white for Christmas. Red has been my favorite color ever since I was a little girl. I think it stems back to when my Italian Grandpa would always have a roll of Cherry-red Lifesaver candies in his pocket and he would graciously and generously share them with my cousins and I. A sweet memory for sure! And for the color white…well, it’s just so fresh and clean and makes the perfect backdrop for whatever I’m decorating with. In fact if I could put up white-washed shiplap on all the walls of my home (like the Fixer Upper Show) that would be so fun! I can dream can’t I?  Instead I try to add as much white, here and there, as I can. The snow-blanket is made from cotton quilt batting. So cheap too! I just cut it to the length of my mantle and added a curvy edge on one side. Easy Peasy! You can’t see in this photo but I painted glue to the snow-drips and sprinkled on clear glitter so it would glisten and sparkle a little.

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If you’ve seen my other Christmas home tours you may recognize my cute little red farm trucks. They just make me happy…especially with a wee little Christmas tree in the back!

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“Heap on more wood! The wind is chill; But let it whistle as it will,

We’ll keep our Christmas merry still.”

~ Sir Walter Scott


DSC09144Another little red truck.

This one was well loved by some sweet little child in years past.

My cow is from Michaels Craft Store. Moo-ry Christmas! :D

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 I love decorating with well loved, back-in-the-day kitchen goodies…vintage cookbooks, tin measuring cups, flour sifter from the 1950’s, and old fashioned egg beater and white enamel pans. If only they could talk, right? How awesome would that be?! I can only imagine the yummy pies, biscuits, cookies and cakes that were made by the sweet apron-wearin’ mamas who owned them before me. They make my kitchen feel cozy! And they inspire me to do a little baking myself!

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“There’s no place like home.” ~Dorothy

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This is a batch of My Aunt Gen’s Italian Date-Nut Bars that I make every Christmas! I was asked by Melissa K. Norris, from the Return to Simple Blog to share this very old family recipe on her Homemade Christmas Series (which is free!) . Melissa and I met on Instagram and Periscope. I’ve listened to her Podcast (which is my favorite) for over a year now and was thrilled and honored to connect  with her.

 I shared on her Homemade Christmas post about my memories of growing up in a big Italian family. Back in the day on Christmas Eve my family and I, along with my Grandma and Grandpa, Aunts, Uncles, and cousins, would all gather at either my Aunt Lucy & Uncle Joe’s home or my mom and dad’s. The faces I loved gleamed around the long lace-covered table, as we enjoyed homemade Spaghetti and Meatballs…or “meat-a-balls” like my Sicilian Grandma and Grandpa would say! There would be lots of loud conversation and laughter which would probably seem like happy chaos if someone were to peek into the window!

After tummies were filled, us kids ran off into another room to play “Button, Button, Who’s Got the Button”, while my mom, my aunts and Grandma would tie their aprons on to clear the table, wash the dishes and turn the electric Coffee Percolator on. Once the kitchen was tidy and the coffee was fresh and hot, a huge tray of Italian cookies was carried to the table. Biscotti, Gemelli, Anisette, Pizzelles, Nut Meringues, just to name a few of the variety these delicious, Southern Italy confections.

As soon as my cousins and I realized the cookies had been set out we rushed to the table to grab a handful. I would search through the mountain of sweet treats to find my favorite…Aunt Gen’s Italian Date~Nut Bars. Sweet, moist and chewy. One bite and I was in Christmas heaven!

If you would like to have this recipe head on over to Melissa’s free Homemade Christmas Series CLICK HERE! Visit Melissa’s blog HERE to learn how she grows her own food, preserves it and lives a self-sufficient pioneering life on her homestead! She’s just adorable! You will love her as I do! Melissa also has a podcast that I absolutely love! It’s called Pioneering Today: Inspiring Your Faith and Pioneer Roots, you can listen, CLICK HERE. She is coming out with a brand new book soon titled A Made From Scratch Life: Simple Ways to Create a Natural Home. I’ve already pre-ordered mine! You can get it HERE! (affiliate)

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“O let there be joy

In the old home tonight,

A tree in the window

 with soft candle light!”

~Rosaline Guingrich

 

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Here’s a super simple centerpiece: using a large white platter, fill with evergreens, then layer on Christmas ornaments! I topped mine with this station wagon with a tree on top that I got from Michaels. The jars are filled with salt and glitter to look like sparkling snow. Then I just placed a votive candle inside.

“And let there be music

Some glad smiles and mirth

For those who still gather

Around the old hearth.

O let there be garlands

And firelight’s glow

The warmth of affection

When bitter winds blow.”

~Rosaline Guingrich

 

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The message on my chalkboard reveals my heart as a homemaker.  Comfort & Joy! That is what I want my family to feel and all who enter my home. Cozy, homey, thankful and loving. That is what I strive for when I’m cleaning, cooking and decorating. To make my loved ones feel loved and cared for physically and emotionally. As the the title of Bob Goff’s awesome book states, LOVE DOES. (affiliate) Love is in the DOING.

It’s more than just making our homes pretty. It’s creating an atmosphere that is an emotionally safe place. Peaceful, joyful, forgiving, thoughtful.  Basically, it’s living the Golden Rule: “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” Matthew 7:12

It’s a scary world out there, let’s do what we can to make our home sweet, safe, clean, cozy, comfy & joyful so our family will feel blessed and loved.

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I bundled up Ol Bessie in my buffalo plaid scarf and added a jingle bell to make her even more jolly! That cute Heifer…she’s my favorite. :D

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I snatched my extra large Ball Jars from my pantry, tied my  RED and WHITE BAKERS TWINE around the rim and placed a battery operated candle inside. I love the way this candle flickers and the true color of the “flame”! They look so real! It has a remote control so I don’t have to climb up and down to turn them on or off. You can find these candles HERE. And the remote, sold separately HERE. (affiliates)

“I wish we could put up some of the Christmas spirit in jars

and open a jar of it every month.”

~ Harlan Miller

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Someone said “The kitchen is the heart of the home”…I agree! Especially at Christmastime! It’s the place where all the warm aromas of vanilla, cinnamon, ginger, apple pie, spicy clove and orange pomanders, sugar cookies and supper cookin’ swirl throughout the house making each heart swoon and eyes sparkle. It smells like love. The kitchen seems to be the happiest and brightest room in the house.

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Decorating our home for Christmas can be elaborate with lots of sparkles and bows or as simple as a bouquet of candy canes blooming from grandma’s old mixing bowl. Simple and sweet.  My trick for getting my candy canes to stand up tall is to put them in a jelly jar first, then put the jar in the bowl. How easy is that!! The little wreath is hung on the back wall with these temporary Clear Command Hooks.

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I wish you a Merry Sugar Pie Christmas!

DSC09051This Jolly snowman is the official door greeter…He’s been busy putting up Pom Pom garland…hee hee! His hat and rosy cheeks are the cutest! I got him at Target, and the white tree is from Walmart. I made my snowballs a few years ago. You just take styrofoam balls, paint glue on them and roll in glitter. That’s it!

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Sing a song of snowflakes flying in the air,

sing a song of sleighbells tinkling everywhere

Earth in dazzling white, sparkling in the light.

~Louise Liddell

DSC09162DSC09092DSC09085Well loved and well worn vintage toys from yesteryear make my heart happy!

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‘I bring you the most joyful news ever announced,

and it is for everyone!

The Savior – yes the Messiah,

the Lord  has been born tonight in Bethlehem!’    

Luke 2:10 -11 TLB

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 The starry heavens sparkled brightly

as God sent us the greatest Christmas gift ever!

“Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and shall bear a Son,

and they shall call His name Immanuel,”

which translated means,

“God with us.” Matthew 1:23

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“A little child…a shining star…a stable rude…the door ajar.

Yet in that place, so crude, forlorn,

The hope of all the world was born.”

~Author Unknown

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“The Light that shines from the humble manger

is strong enough to lighten our way to the end of our days.”

~ Vita-Rays

“Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!”  2 Corinthians 9:15

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Well darlin’, lastly I’d like to leave you with this thought…

the best thing to decorate your home with is love!

With love as your centerpiece, your home will sparkle with joy!

Thank you sweetie so much for stopping by!

I loved sharing my heart for the home with you!

I so appreciate your comments,

they are the fuel that keeps me going!!

So, pretty please with a cherry on top, do say howdy!

And let me know where you call home,

it’s always fun for me to see which town, state or country you live in.

If you are reading this in your email and you want to comment,

please come over to this blog-post and do so or I won’t see it!

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GOD BLESS YOUR DARLIN’ HEART!

I WISH YOU A  VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS!

I love you more than you know!

Aunt Ruthie

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