Just locked the front door, literally and metaphorically, on the 2010 Christmas season and I must share with you what an amazing season it has been. I speak not of the cash register but of the meaningful moments and significant personal stories shared with me because of this store. Many have brought joyful tears to my eyes, like opening the door the night of my Christmas Gathering and seeing SO many people waiting to come in...an astounding moment for me and one I will not forget.
But there have been so many more that are, well, just humbling. A couple of weeks ago a young woman came in the front door and headed straight to me at the counter. She asked if I was the owner and I said yes. She said "I just want to tell you something...". She proceeded to tell me that a few nights before she brought her boyfriend home from the hospital after his latest chemo treatment. They were stopped at the traffic light out front. Understandably, this year has been especially difficult for this young man and she said he has not had anything positive to say for quite a while. She told me while they sat at the light he turned his head and saw the wintry windows of the store full of the lit-up snow covered trees and he said "Wow, that's really pretty." She just wanted me to know...and she turned and walked out. I stood there with tears streaming down my face and I said a prayer for that man. A man I have never met and will never forget. All of us have something to give, no matter how big or small and sometimes you never know when you're giving to someone who really needs it. Makes me think we should all wake up asking ourselves, what can I do for someone else today?
That is just one of a plethora of personal moments shared with me recently. And yes, while it's important that the cash register hums so I can keep the doors open...moments like these are the true reason and my motivation for creating urban farmhouse 5 years ago. All of you make these moments possible. Thank you.
Wishing you and yours the very best Christmas.
~~Gifts of time and love are surely the basic ingredients of a truly merry Christmas. ~Peg Bracken
Love this little lady! I picked her up down out the Olde Shoe Factory where I always be sure to visit Polly's booth As I was checking out I spied this rusty vintage aqua truck. I knew it would be lovely hauling around vintage ornaments and what fun to add a little Christmas time whimsy to a centerpiece! Bottle brush trees would be adorable as well. Hope you're having a wonderful Wednesday!
If you haven't heard of this yet make sure you visit soon! A collection of online boutiques all in one place, including urban farmhouse! We're also the featured business this week...check it out here You'll find loads of one of a kind items and unique finds that just cannot be found in the big box stores. Shopping here also helps out independent business owners! Enjoy!
This is one of those recipes that is so easy and good you wonder why you only make it during the holidays. My Grandma made these for years and the whole family is pretty addicted to them. Each pecan is like a crispy burst of pecan pie in your mouth! Ingredients 1 egg white 1 t. water 4 c. pecan halves 1/2 c. white sugar 1/2 t. salt 1/2 t. ground cinnamon Preheat oven to 250 degrees and generously spray a baking sheet with Pam. For easier clean up line the pan with foil first, then spray. In a large mixing bowl mix egg white and water. Beat the egg white and water until foamy but not stiff, not going for meringue here, just a nice airy glaze. Gently toss the pecans in the egg white foam. Mix the dry ingredients in a separate bowl. If you're feeling adventurous add some cayenne or crushed rosemary. Toss the pecans with the dry ingredients until all are evenly coated. Spread the pecans in a single layer on the baking sheet. Bake for one hour, stirring occasionally so that all sides of the pecans get their crispy goodness going on. Allow to cool, stirring while cooling keeps them from sticking to the pan too. Here they are...ready to eat! They make a beautiful Christmas gift packaged in cellophane bags and tied with ribbon or sealed with monogrammed stickers (so the recipient know who's kitchen they came from!). Enjoy!
No, just frosting the cupboard... I have these wonderful paper mache drippy icicles at the store and everyone is always asking me what to do with it and how to hang it. There are a few pieces hung in a cupboard at the shop but I thought I would do some at home on my beloved green cupboard in my dining room. I LOVE the way it turned out! I plan on keeping this up well past Christmas too. The icicles are generously frosted with mica flakes that sparkle and glisten beautifully. I attached my pieces with spots of hot glue on the back. Now this is not something I would recommend to everyone unless you have a chippy, peely piece like mine. After the winter season when I remove them I am sure some paint will come with the glue but that will only add more farmhouse charm to this old girl. If hot glue is not an option you can use velcro dots or 3M products. I also think you could use poster board fashioned into an 'L' bracket of sorts. Glue the snowy piece onto the poster board, to the bottom of the L if you will...then lay the large part of the L on your cupboard shelf. You would then need to anchor it with a heavy dish or prop. I always fill the shelves with some of my vintage bulb collections. Last year I was inspired by Kevin Reiner's use of pink in his 2008 Country Living piece and my dining room was dripping with delicious Christmas candy pink from chandelier to table to cupboard. This year I decided pink would not be allowed as she stole the stage last year. I let the cupboard choose what "dress" she wanted to put on for the party this year. While her main color is a sea foam green she has many layers. Gray, teal and cream all can be seen peeking out here and there so it was decided: silver, faded blues & greens, tarnished glitter and "dirty" ironstone. The petite ironstone teacup in the middle and on the right are sweet treasures I picked up from Linda Marcov at the 2009 Country Living Fair in Columbus, Ohio, the other from Lisa Marton of urban farmhouse. Each is holding a vintage feather tree glass ball.
I wish you all could stop by for a cup of steaming Christmas Coffee!! Not a creature is stirring except my carved wooden mouse.
While my fearless turkey frying husband braved the elements I ran up to my shop and grabbed a few things to set our table before our guests arrived. I have a collection of vintage pink glassware given to me by my mom that I have always wanted to pair with some brown transfer ware, which I happened to have at the shop. I have been secretly hoping it would not sell before Thanksgiving so that I would have the pleasure of setting my table with it. I separated each dinner and dessert plates with one of my own ruffled salad plates. Each place setting is then topped with a pink Fostoria Jamestown sherbet. For a quick centerpiece I placed a trio of pitch pots on a bed of fall wheats and grasses. I wanted to have some mini white pumpkins spilling out then sprinkle it with cranberries but I forgot the pumpkins, oh well, have to enjoy the turkey without them, twist my arm. See that cute little turkey in a vintage ironstone dish? He's made out of butter! I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving! On to Black Friday and the weekend (I am a retailer after all :-), our hours this weekend are:
Friday 8am to 5pm Saturday 10am to 5pm Sunday Noon to 4pm
To warm you up while you shop "the farmhouse" we'll be serving up steaming cups of Danish Christmas Coffee!!
Enjoy the day for all that it means to you. Whether it is laden with tradition, family, friends, a huge meal, take out food, parades, football or movies, whatever you choose, let your heart be filled with gratitude. My heart is overflowing with gratitude for all of you. Wishing you a wonderful Thanksgiving, today and all days.
"Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it." Arthur Ward
Why reserve makeovers for people and houses? How about for Christmas ornaments too? I purchased these very plain tree ornaments last year with plans of dressing these girls up. Finally, (12 months later) I did a few. I first asked my urban farmhouse Facebook friends for suggestions. Lots of great ideas were shared! Thanks everyone! I would really like to try a suggestion of putting monograms on them. If I can figure out how to stitch that on I am going to do it. I picture them looking like they were made out of European monogrammed linen bed sheets.I have a tote box full of these balls so I better get busy. Here is the before: With hot glue gun in hand and working with just what I had on hand (no runs for supplies as I was working the shop). I came up with these cuties. SOOOOOO much better! Any other ideas out there? Leave your ideas in the comment sections. What else can we do with these?
Check out a few of our favorites! For the chef (or a family member addicted to the Food Network, fresh from a California farm, bay laurel leaf wreaths. How about arriving with this turkey plate piled high with iced cut out sugar cookies of turkeys? Ole Tom would approve! Or a jar of imported French chestnut jam...over warm brie...to die for! These felted wool wine bags are a much more stylish option than that brown paper bag. Come on, get some style on that bottle! How about an unusual vintage butter server with wonderful lion head legs. Love it! A gleaming set of vintage wine glasses, perfect for the vintage table setting. So fun! A vintage bar keep's tray! Beautiful in groups of three,Aspen Bay's renowned pinecone candles are scented heavily with spa quality fragrances. If you can't stay to wash the dishes maybe they won't call you quite so many colorful names if you show up with a bottle of Holiday Greenery dish soap.