Monday, December 31, 2012

Flowers In The House (Of Mr. Baby) December 2012


What better way to to celebrate a new year than by toasting the one year birthday of Emil?  The excitement started early in the day. We picked up the cake, made a batch of hummus and put together some flowers.  Everybody helped with the prep,but only the Lab was invited to party.

Mr. Baby was camera ready. Which was good, the paparazzi were out in full force.  His grandfather, Op-Hai, was in attendance bearing home-smoked salmon, bottles of champagne and his camera.  The house was also party perfect. The limestone counter was spread with a white  cloth and covered with an assortment of nibbles.(wait for the flowers, they're coming) 


After smothering the Bday boy with kisses we gathered our vases and decked their halls.

A little vase of white and green parrot tulips, silvered fern and brunia decorate the bedroom shelves.
In the living room a depression glass bowl of boxwood and greens,tibet roses, silvered branches, dusty miller and more brunia gild an already glam space.

And on the buffet table a milk glass vase holds a white amaryllis blossom, a parrot tulip and more bits of silver and grey.
There were many guests, a rousing chorus of Happy Birthday and huge slabs of chocolate cake with raspberry filling.
And after the guests were gone leaving behind empty champagne flutes and dirty cake plates,when the dogs were sleeping and the family reveling in the quiet, there was time for a cuddle with his father and a reading (or three) of "That's Not My Puppy".
Happy Birthday Mowgli,
I know you're almost a Mr. T, but you'll always be Mr. Baby to me.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Having A Party (In The House)

Hmmm, just wondering what everyone's plans for New Years are.

Having a party, going to a party, staying home and being cosy?

Unusually enough we are going out to a should be fun with a touch of fancy party.

But we will have a few flowers and maybe a blooming plant or two about the house.

So do you think we can get it together for Flowers In The House? 

This Monday, the 31st.

I have been too crazy these last 2 months to even host but if you have the time and energy I can run the vacuum and put out a plate of cookies, maybe pour a glass of something bubbly.

Calling all corners of the earth to the last FITH of 2012.

You in?

If you have never engaged in this, it's pretty simple.  You take some pictures of  flowers or plants or whathavyou in your house, or garden or front stoop, write a post then high tail it over here. I have a Mr. Linky thingy up.  You link your name and URL and leave a comment.  Then you go and visit others who are hosting and leave them a comment.

It's a fun way to meet new friends and greet old ones.

A nice way to finish up a year that wasn't always kind.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Testing Testing

Hello, hello, Hope you all had happy holidays. I'm back, well rested and writing this on my NEW COMPUTER. 

Many thanks to GG. (That is an understatement if I have written one)

There was nothing I wanted/needed more but never even though of receiving.

Mine was old and battered, well loved to be sure but the number 1 barely functioning and many keys were loose and hanging by a thread no thanks to a big fat furry kitten ass.

We have had a lovely few days, two dinners with Mr. Baby and fam, a drinks party here with neighbors and today we're off to King George, Va to have lunch with a friend in her new house on the water.  Heaven.

I'm not so sure how to edit/post my pictures yet on this new baby, so I think I'll just begin and we'll see what we can see.

Ah, Mr. B. reading to his father.

The Babe, his pup and his damn cheerios.  I'm sure there are still a few around in various cracks and crevices if anyone is feeling peckish.

Hummus from Smitten Kitchen for drinks party.

How did we do? 

I am not used to such a new and slippery keyboard since my old one was covered with bits of food and fur.

I keep losing the post and finding myself on a page with the computer narrating how to use the photo option or another showing me the temperature in Sydney, which by the way appears to be 70 degrees. Nice.
I'm going to quietly sneak away here while everything is in place and the sun shines in Australia.

xo Jane

Monday, December 24, 2012

Breaking News: Code Red And Green

This just in: We are receiving ground breaking information from the North Pole.

It appears that the elves are  refusing or unable to attend Mr. Clause in the wrapping and loading of presents this evening.

A doctor is in attendance and has detected a strong odor of alcohol on their breath.

This ladies and gentleman may be the end of the world as we know it.

We repeat: Christmas may be delayed this year. 

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Rocking Around The Christmas Tree

Ahhhhh, hello again.  At about 5:50pm I snuck over to the computer at work and spent a mad 5 minutes reading your blogs.

I was almost unable to stand up again what with my feet instantaneously swelling up to twice the size of my boots.

But I made it home and am ensconced in front of my own computer and am hoping to finish this post before the Thai food arrives.

Then I am hoping to stay awake long enough to eat said food.  And take a bath.  And get these boots off.

So this is Christmas?

Our tree is up and halfway decorated.  The Tasmanian devils remove anything under 18". Half measures avail us everything.

To avoid breakage (much) there are paper ornaments made by GG, garland crocheted by little ole uncrafty me, postcards, some family ornaments from Germany and Danish stars and origami and lights, lights and more lights.

Of course they unwrap the lights on the lower branches. They also try to unwrap any present that makes its way under the tree.

I call them the little strippers.

We are all drawn to the tree.  We sip tea, read books, watch football and occasionally nap by its flame. 

( Intermission)

I'm back, dinner done, bath taken, dressed in sweats and moccasins. Ahhhhhhh.

The kettle is boiling, the couch is empty, I'm off.

Hope you can all put your feet up and enjoy a quiet moment at home.

xo Jane

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Let There Be Light

Wednesday and Thursday night I took the bus home from work.  Both nights it was well after 5:00PM and darkness had fallen.

It was as if I were in a different town.  The streets were unrecognizable to me.  I was surprised by every stop and every turn on the roads.

But I was equally delighted by all the Christmas lights.  Street after street, house after house, all bedecked for the season.

I understood, as never before, the power of the lights, white or bright, that pierced the darkness and lifted my heart. I should blog about this, I thought.

Then came Friday and the heartbreak in Newtown, Connecticut.

Like all of you I was drowned in grief. And my heart was heavy with sadness. The holiday season seemed almost unnecessary and reasons for gratitude far far away.

Then I remembered my bus rides. Today GG and I decorated the outside of our house.

We wrapped garland with lights and hung it around the door. We covered a tree shaped topiary form with  roping and strung it with more lights.

For the coup de coeur, we covered our table with 150 lights woven in a net and anchored the 'table cloth" with a large terra cotta vase of greenery.

Neighbors stopped by to pet the dog, laugh at the kittens and bask in the light.
If we can bring some joy into the heart of a neighbor walking by or a bus driving down Columbia Pike the electric bill will be worth it.

Comfort and Joy.  Bring it on. 

We need a little Christmas now.

xo Jane

Tuesday, December 11, 2012


Tres exciting to be sunk in a chair, Lab by my side, kittens busy deconstructing the Christmas tree and read your blogs.

Our weekend was fast and furious. The Hai drove down from Connecticut to spend time with us and Mr. Baby.  He's a lean, mean tennis playing machine and as ever he left the men behind in the dust and the women wanting more.

Saturday night was a Holiday party at Cafe Milano in Georgetown.  Food, drink and RayBans for the ladies.

The Plastic Surgery department: they work hard and once a year play even harder.

Sunday we recovered from the unaccustomed glamour by spending the day in pajamas.
The lab spent the day in her bed with a slight fever. I made soup and GG and Lucy put a 1000 points of light on a 5ft tree.

Those Ray Bans have come in handy.

And Gus you ask? He must have partied a little hearty his own self for he was in hiding most of the day.

We've asked Santa for a teeny pair of sunglasses for him too.

Me thinks he's only just begun to party.

xo Jane

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Nada For Navidad

Don't worry. Though I'm rushing about flinging up greens and decorations in the home of others our house remains untouched by any sign of the season. And the cobblers children have no shoes as my mother used to say.

We're basically just lying about with our feet in one anothers face. No tree, no wreath, no nutting.

We have a touch of white here,

And a big burst of white there.

Oh, and a few more stems tucked about.

We hope to do a some hall decking this weekend, but there is a Saturday night party that involves a little fancy dress and some makeup application.  And a Sunday evening concert.

Plus we decided to get (minimally) crafty this year and make a few ornaments that the kittens can't break.

But they can still destroy.

Stay tuned.

Christmas 2012: a process not an event.

Monday, December 3, 2012

A Day In The Life

Good Morning.  The holiday season has come in with a roar not a whimper and I am running, running, running to keep up the pace.

When I come home I find in ilex berries in my shoes, my eyelashes are encrusted with glitter and bits of pine are nestled in my hair.

Eich ein ornament.

I haven't even had time to take a photo for Instagram and they take only.....well you know.

There are many good days. On Thursday we went out on one of my favorite jobs for one of my favorite customers.

 When we arrive, the tree is up, the garland  hung on the v. long staircase, the Christmas music playing and the boxes of ornaments open and waiting on the marble floor in the foyer.

All that's left for us to do is take off our coats and make some magic.

We talk and laugh and pad around offering suggestions to one another. One does the tree, another the staircase and I do the 3 fireplace mantles.

We bring 2 heavily ornamented wreaths for the front doors and 4 evergreen wreaths for the gateposts.

At lunchtime we sit at the table in the freshly decorated kitchen and the housekeeper serves us a delicious lunch.  This year is we ate quiche Lorraine, a green salad, sparkling water, then coffee and cookies. 

Reluctantly we left the table and went back to work.

By 3:00 we had packed up, cleaned up, suited up and were off. Leaving behind civilization and the smell of fraiser fir and reentering the world of ringing phones, piles of orders and the air of hysteria that always hangs in the shop this time of year.

But there was a iced latte waiting so all hope is not lost.

Paradise can be regained.