Sunday, December 22, 2019

T'was the Weekend Before Christmas.....

It was a wonderful feeling to wake up Saturday morning without one single thing we HAD to do that day! Believe it or not, I still woke up before 8:00! I've been waking early for over a month now!
Since I didn't actually have to get up, I brought my coffee back to bed with me and had my prayer time and caught up in  my Country Diary. Then  I read for awhile - a Belva Plain novel - and then I played my Words With Friends and Scrabble games.  I called Lillian and sent texts to a couple of friends. I also sat propped up on my pillows and spent some time thinking. That's a novel thing to do sometimes. Just sit and think. It was noon when I finally got out of bed - other than the times I went to the kitchen to refill my coffee cup.

Louis Dean spent several hours blowing and mowing leaves while I puttered around the house.
I wrapped what few presents I bought this year. Mostly books for the grands. I organized all the tins of Texas Trash ready for gift giving. And since I woke up early, I took a good long nap.

It was a great day. 
Nothing that we HAD to do so anything we DID do was just because we WANTED to!

This morning we were excited about the Christmas service at Fellowship Church in Grapevine.
We have several compasses and several services.....from Dallas to Fort Worth, Frisco, Florida, Oklahoma, and more.....30 services in all from Saturday the 21st - Tuesday the 24th.

We chose the 11:15 Sunday morning service and we were not only on time but we were EARLY!
It was a great service!

If you arrived early enough, there was hot cocoa and photo op stations.
Louis Dean took our first selfie!
His arms are so much longer than mine!

I soaked pinto beans all day yesterday and cooked them in the crock pot all night, so the only thing I had to do when we got home from church was make a batch of cornbread.

We watched the Cowboy game and they lost.....

It was so nerve wracking I counted cards to ease the tension.
19 packs of Santa cards for our Christmas Eve game of NUTS!
I've collected decks of Santa cards for years and used to play NUTS a lot.
 I can't even remember the last time I played.
But we are playing Christmas Eve!
Every one gets a pack of cards and there will be 18 people here.
Not all will play, though. Louis Dean? Are you kidding?? He's a NO!
The 5 youngest grands will have a game table of their own so that leaves 12!
We will have plenty of cards!!

This evening I went out in the gazebo and used the blower to get all the leaves and pecan shells out.
I just love our gazebo. Louis Dean did a good job restoring it and it is sturdier than ever.

There's even a small Christmas tree!
It is a pre lit one but I added a strand of colored ones just for Louis Dean.

While we have plenty of our own pecans this year, I did buy a bulk bag of mixed nuts to put in the big wooden nut! It holds the nuts and the crackers and pickers.

We looked for new chairs and stuff after Louis Dean finished getting the gazebo back up - but we couldn't find anything we liked. So we pulled our vintage glider from the deck into the gazebo and that works for me. I can prop my legs up and sit back against the cushions.
We did take our two old chairs to the curb last spring so Louis Dean is making do with a big lawn chair that I just threw a red cover over. We will keep looking but for now we making do with what we have....and that's good enough.

A tree skirt is folded and used as a table cloth on a heavy trunk we moved out here to make room for the Christmas tree in the living room.

We even have two Cracker Barrel rockers for guests!

I meant to get the walls back here on the sewing room painted this year and that didn't happen.
I'll do it in the spring but in the meantime - colored lights makes everything look prettier.

I will leave these up all winter just for Louis Dean.

From the outside looking in.....

I love looking in windows.....even my own!

I've been working on the preparations for Christmas Eve.
The menu is a Chili Supper with all the trimmings.  My grocery list is made and I have a to-do list for tomorrow. Chili, cornbread made as muffins, and a Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad, chips and dips, guacamole, Mexican pastries, a candy tray of divinity........
Tonight I made three batches of homemade cornbread mix - just ready to add the liquid ingredients.
I was dragging my feet about serving cornbread because of the crumbs. I live with Louis Dean and he loves cornbread and there is always a crumby trail around him. I thought, "Crumbs x 18???"
That's why I decided to make it as muffins in cupcake papers.
I think it's going to be an easy fun Christmas Eve gathering!

I've been writing this journal entry in front of the fireplace in the den while watching Alaska: The Last Frontier.....season 9 episode 11 to be exact!
It's nice to watch something entertaining that is wholesome and doesn't include blood and gore.....
although there is a bit of that here but it's not the same.

Well, this weekend is over and it was wonderful.
Christmas is just around the corner......


Joy@aVintageGreen said...

A lovely day. Thank you dear Linda for sharing.

BeachGypsy said...

Sounds like a great day! Love the picture of y'all at church...that is a really good picture! Your home looks so bright and've done a great job on it my friend--it surely looks fun and welcoming. Wow, it's Christmas week now....hope your week is starting off great and I'm so glad you've had some relief from the awful knee pain!

Estelle's said...

This was such a sweet post Linda...I love reading about your activities and promises to be a good gathering for Christmas Eve...the gazebo has never looked prettier...cozy and festive..enjoy every minute!

Vee said...

Since you folks enjoy Alaska, do you also enjoy Mountain Men? It’s on the History Channel and there are some episodes on You Tube, I mention it because John would have loved it.

Festivities well underway, there! The gazebo looks nice and cozy.

Merry on! Christmas Eve tomorrow? Can you believe it?!

Stacy said...

I do love seeing your photos of all your decorations...makes be feel so festive. It's all so pretty! And Louis Dean did a great job on your first selfie. I never would have thought that's what it was. Merry Christmas to you and yours!

Changes in the wind said...

Dinner sounds wonderful and I too think the cupcakes are a good idea. So glad you are done with all the work and can just enjoy your day and the festivities.

Deb said...

Good morning! What a lovely weekend. I love all the pictures of your decorations. Have a very Merry Christmas week! Hugs from UT!

Susie said...

Linda, Oh my gosh ..crumbs times 18..has me laughing. I like the idea of the gazebo being an extra room. A fun spot to go to for fresh air. It we didn't live in a wind tunnel , I would certainly have one here. I like the idea of simplicity at meal time too. You are going to have so much fun. Please hug everyone for me. Merry Christmas to all. Blessings, love you, xoxo, Susie

I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

It's so hard to believe tht Christms week is here. We wait and wait and suddenly it's here. So glad you had a quiet weekend to enjoy before the big day gets here. Your gazebo is so pretty and welcoming. A perfect place to sit and enjoy an evening. Making do is something I'm very familiar with and have do that for a long time You are an expert at it.Hope you all have a wonderful Christmas and a blessed New Year too.

Sandra said...

super duper idea for the cornbread crumbs. I like looking in windows too. when we walk big, if the curtains are open I am looking, even driving in the am people leave everything open.. your gazebo is so festive and pretty.. I really like the glider and would like to sit on that with my e-reader. Merry Christmas, enjoy all that wonderful food. I love pintos and cornbread and most of the other things you mentioned.

Arlene @Nanaland said...

Merry Christmas Linda...hope you and Louis Dean have a joyful new year as well. I am taking some time off for Christmas but I will be back on Dec 30th. I want to take time to just savor the season.

Bluebird49 said...

I was watching Alaska, too! I think muffins wil be great and hope it all goes well.. Can’t wait to hear all about it!

photowannabe said...

What a lovely way to spend the day...doing just what you want to do.
I love that.
Your home is so cozy and inviting. 18 people for Christmas are going to have so much fun!
Everyone loves to come to your house..for sure.
The simple meal sounds delicious and good way to solve the crumb problem.
Merry Christmas to you and LD.
I'm getting your wonderful Christmas card out again and putting it on the top of the pile in my basket.
It's a treasured card!

Deanna Rabe - Creekside Cottage Blog said...

Sounds like a great day to me!

The gazebo is perfect! And I love looking in through your windows! So beautiful!

Your first selfie is great!

Your Christmas Eve dinner sounds yummy, and great idea about the cornbread muffins!

Merriest Christmas, Linda!

Cheapchick said...

Merry Christmas Linda - to you, Louis Dean and your family

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

We have chili on the menu and I'm going to make frito chili pie....fritoes, chili with cheese on top! I'm hungry for cornbread now though! heehee! Love seeing your beautiful decorations. You are the queen of Christmas decor! Merry Christmas my friend to you and L.D.!

Laurie said...

I can’t see your photos but I remember the warmth and beauty of your homes, have a wonderful Christmas!

Carol said...

How I long for a quiet day at home with no expectations! I have plenty that I need to do before the holiday and I am already making plans for the after the holiday. Merry Christmas and I hope your Christmas eve is perfect!

Carole said...

Enjoy your Christmas Eve! We are having a quiet night. We'll be hving Christmas lunch at 6pm on your Christmas Eve. Wishing you all glad tidings. Cheers

MimiG said...

Merry Christmas friend! The Blessings of the Season to you and your family.

Aloha Acres said...

Merry Christmas, Sweet Lady. Y'all are stunning in that selfie. Frame that one.
I've had a really rough few months. Will write about it soon. Sorry Ive been MIA again.
Best wishes to you and yours

Rain said...

Linda your gazebo is just beautiful! And I love the Santa decks!!! Merry Christmas friend! :) xxx

Beatrice P. Boyd said...

It is so wonderful to see holiday lights, Linda, and thank you for showing us inside your home. The gazebo does look so nice and comfy and the little tree is a nice addition. Thanks for sharing about your holiday plans. Merry Christmas to you and Louis Dean and your family. I hope you all have fun playing NUTS.

Judy said...

It all sounds like the perfect way to enter the Christmas season. I'm sure you had a wonderful family celebration! Smiling about the cornbread & the trail of crumbs. :) I love looking in windows as well. And our blinds are almost always open! PS Thanks for the lovely Christmas card. I treasure it!