FRIDAY POTPOURRI: NOSTALGIC CHRISTMASES…

Nostalgia is a feeling I have around the holidays, and in this photo (above), I am reminded of family gatherings from the past.

Our annual get-togethers combining family from afar, as well as those who live locally, usually happened at Thanksgiving, and in this one from 2005, we met at a neighboring restaurant, where they always had their tree up in November.

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But before those Christmases, there were some in the home in the foothills.  Below is a shot of my eldest son next to the tree we decorated on our first Christmas there in 1994.

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Fast forward to the last days in the foothills:  our Christmas in 2006, the final one there.

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By the following Christmas, I was settled into my current home in the city, and in the neighboring mall, the grandkids piled into this big sleigh.

 

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Since then, there have been several years in my current home, and with each year, we bring out the same old ornaments…but arranged in different ways.  I am not sure what year this one (below) took place…sometime between 2007 and 2014.  My bad.

 

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Christmas 2014

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Another one from 2014

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Nowadays, I am more minimal in my decor:

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Do your holidays reflect changes in your life?  Do you go big…or do you go minimal?

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THURSDAY POTPOURRI: TELLING STORIES….

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Nostalgia.  You know how FB brings up our photos, showing us what memories we can share?  Well, I seldom feature those suckers again on that site, but this FB header was one I had to copy and stash in one of my folders.

I knew it would come in handy some day. 

The photo on the left was a shot of my guest cottage in the foothills, when my daughter was living there.  She loved decorating it in all the bright colors of the rainbow…which is how it got its name:  Rainbow Cottage.  Her kitchen/living room had gold tones, and her bathroom (below) was bathed in an orange color that completely mimicked the one in our home when she was a baby.  Sense memory?

 

 

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In the photo below, the fading sign that says “Rainbow Cottage” once stood in the lawn between the main house and the guest house in that foothills “dream house.”  Now it huddles in the corner of my small patio with assorted cast-offs, like a piece of a forgotten vignette.

My daughter insisted that the sign not be front and center of the guest cottage while she was living there.  She doesn’t like signs.  Or maybe she just didn’t want to be part of my story.

 

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Yes, my story includes some novels I wrote, and one of them featured an artist living in a friend’s guest house who created the walls of each room in a different color.  The character who owned the main house named it Rainbow Cottage.  Not just because of the colors…but because the artist was named Rainbow. (Miles to Go: by Laurel-Rain Snow).

 

 

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As I write my story today, I jump ahead to the present to feature a growing family of adorable tots who live in North Dakota, creating their own nostalgic moments.  My step-great-grandchildren, Lilly and Bella.  Their older brother Maddix did not participate in this cookie-baking event.  Here they are, beginning the project.

 

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And afterwards….Lilly’s showing us her feelings about what she has obviously just tasted.  Or maybe she is protesting the end of the project.

 

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My current daily life includes a lot of reading, and today’s book is one I just started:  The Twilight Wife, by A. J. Banner.

 

 

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Thirty-four-year-old marine biologist Kyra Winthrop remembers nothing about the diving accident that left her with a complex form of memory loss. With only brief flashes of the last few years of her life, her world has narrowed to a few close friendships on the island where she lives with her devoted husband, Jacob.

But all is not what it seems. Kyra begins to have visions—or are they memories?—of a rocky marriage, broken promises, and cryptic relationships with the island residents, whom she believes to be her friends.

As Kyra races to uncover her past, the truth becomes a terrifying nightmare. A twisty, immersive thriller, The Twilight Wife will keep readers enthralled through the final, shocking twist.

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I am already doubting every character in this story, as flashes of memory become increasingly more frightening.

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Since the weekend, I have been fighting this damn cold…and remembering how I somehow managed to escape the affliction for years.  Yes, years.  Ever since I finally retired and no longer worked closely with kids who were often sick, I have been blessed with wellness.

I knew that blessed state of being would probably come to an end at some point, but I was still shocked by the symptoms…and I was in denial for several days.  LOL.

Now…I think I’m better.  The worst is at night time, and sleeping is fitful.  Nyquil, anyone?

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What nostalgic moments or family stories do you recall?  What are your favorite books today?

This weekend, I am sharing this post on Saturday Snapshots at West Metro Mommy Reads.

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THURSDAY POTPOURRI: OLD PHOTOS & NOSTALGIC MOMENTS

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Earlier today, I was feeling nostalgic, as I sorted through old photos.  Like this one in the mid-eighties.  Remember the landlines we all had back then?  And how young girls “talked” on phones endlessly, instead of texting?  LOL

I saw an old friend today.  I hadn’t seen her in many years, but she lived in a neighboring apartment in the complex where I lived when this photo was taken.

It was my first three-bedroom apartment after my divorce.  I loved having room for everyone…and even two bathrooms.  Things I take for granted now.

We still didn’t have our own washer and dryer, though, and had to spend too much time at coin laundromats.

Then we moved to this place:  a two-story townhouse with a loft and a garage…and a laundry room of my own, inside!  SQUEEE!

Here are all four of my kids in the loft, right after we moved in….this was in 1988.

 

 

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And here’s another view of the loft after a couple of years….I turned it into my bedroom!  Heather is checking it out….

 

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And now, let’s take a look at the 1990s, when I moved into the foothills to an A-framed house with its guesthouse down the slope of the lawn.  And below, here are a couple of friends enjoying the view:  Sage (black) and Sebastian.

 

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Do you find yourself reminiscing over old photos?  What are your favorite moments from the past?  What makes them special?

 

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A Big Leap Back – Rain in 1970!

 

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REVIEW: WISHIN’ & HOPIN’, BY WALLY LAMB

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In a delightful journey to the heart of the iconic 1960s, when innocence and naivete were still possible in young people, we follow the story of ten-year-old Felix Funnicello, a cousin of Annette’s, during one holiday season.

Wishin’ and Hopin’ is narrated by Felix, whose descriptions of the students (and teachers) in the Catholic school in Connecticut that he attends, allowed us to catch a glimpse of what life was like in small town New England in the era before computers, cell phones, and texting. As a result, we can definitely see the charm of the times.

A school play for the holiday season is the primary feature, and the reader has to laugh out loud at some of the amateurish moments, from the play itself—created by one of the students—to the costumes.

In the epilogue, we learn what happened to the teachers and students years afterwards. A story that reminds me of the TV movies made for the season. 3.5 stars.

SATURDAY TIDBITS — A POTPOURRI OF CHILDHOOD MEMORIES — DEC. 22

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Maybe it was finding this image on Pinterest, or perhaps it was just the nostalgia that creeps into my mind during the holiday season.

But this morning a name from the past circled around in my brain and lodged there.  So I had to Google it.

And what do you know?  The childhood magazine that we subscribed to and for which I eagerly waited once a month is not in circulation, but there are copies of those vintage periodicals.

Wee Wisdom.  Does anyone else recall that?  Is there anyone else in the blogosphere as old as I am?  lol

This one is an issue from 1953, from an Etsy shop.

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My favorite parts were the stories.  And the paper dolls.

I’m tempted to send off for it, but one of the things I know for sure (to quote Oprah), is that sometimes when we revisit the past, the reality of it from our present day perspective casts a kind of jaded aura upon it.  Those beautiful moments don’t often live up to our memories, considering how far we’ve come since those days.

So perhaps I’ll just let it lie.  And think about it.  I did bookmark the page, though.  What would you do?

 

SUNDAY POTPOURRI: NOSTALGIA & SUNDAY CHORES — DEC. 16

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Good morning and welcome to another Sunday Potpourri. 

I love Sunday mornings, where I think about the week past, in my Sunday Salon post; and contemplate the day…and the week ahead.

I started off the day with breakfast in bed.  And now I’m in my office watching a VHS tape (yes, the movie is that old!) about love, forbidden romance, and consequences.  An Inconvenient Woman is based on a Dominick Dunne novel, which I also enjoyed.

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Yesterday I indulged in several Woody Allen movies.  Yes, it’s nostalgia time.

I also did a little cleaning, including bagging up the leaves on my patio.  They were much worse than these yesterday.  Literally piles!

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I don’t go out there much during the winter, but I still like to keep ahead of the leaves.  And I love listening to the wind chimes.

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The moon and stars chimes was a gift from an old friend, given when I first visited her lovely home in Northern California a few years ago.

I think of her when I see it…or listen to it.

I almost bought a home up there when selling my foothill house, but my kids threw a fit.  Now I realize that they didn’t want to see their babysitter leave!  lol

I still sometimes wonder what would have happened if I’d moved there.  While I visited, we went to some lovely book signings and visited some quaint shops.

Small town life.  But what a lovely small town in a liberal community.  Sounds like my cup of tea…sigh.

Nostalgia.

What do you enjoy on a Sunday as the holidays approach?

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TUESDAY POTPOURRI: SCANNING MY LIFE — NOV. 13

After last week’s journey toward finding another beaded curtain for my condo, I scanned these images from my old photo albums.

These are Circa 2004, when I was still living in the A-frame cottage shown on the right in the photo above.

Those beaded curtains definitely intrigued the grandchildren.  You can see one of them running through the beads (in the photo second from left).  I think that was the ultimate game for those kids.  The beads were pretty sturdy, as they didn’t break.

Before I moved, I lent them to my daughter for her home farther up in the foothills.  Alas, the beads did break during her time with them.

Which led me on a quest for new ones.

I think these have more of the “sixties” vibe that I was going for…so everything works out.  But I do enjoy perusing the old albums and seeing that home and decor.

You might recognize the little red cupboard, in these old photos; I still have it.

See it in the left corner above.

As much as I enjoyed looking at my previous incarnation with some of these same collections, I like my new space more.

But I do miss the hunter green dining table (you can see the chairs in the top photo); however, I didn’t have room for that table and the Coca Cola one in my new space.  The Coca Cola table won out…and my daughter got the “farm table.”

Do you enjoy looking back at older versions of your home and/or life?  Do you feel nostalgic?