.: Hen house complete with the farmers and their flock! :.
We are truly loving every moment of these quiet days after Christmas. I was wishing for a visit from Queen Winter! She certainly did visit and gave us a very snowy Christmas!
Now the landscape around our home is covered in a blanket of fresh white snow and we are enjoying our Christmas tree for just a bit longer, (staying in our slippers and pajamas just a bit longer) and letting the gifts sit happily opened around the tree as we enjoy these peaceful days!
.: Ocean stones rejoin me in a gorgeous new attire! :.
My very thoughtful friend Maribeth sent me these three gorgeous crochet covered stones. These are absolutely one of my favorite gifts!
I had collected stones at the ocean near our home to send to Maribeth for her to use for her craft. She generously offered to craft one for me--and to my surprise she sent not one, but three!
These stones were a few I had collected for her. It was truly meaningful to have them come back to me in this most beautiful way. Each stone was collected in meditation and in turn I know Maribeth very mindfully adorned each stone.
.: The colors and sweetness of these gifts brightens my day when I see them in my kitchen! :.
A few other fun gifts (picked out by me during a visit to an antique shop near my mama's house) given on Christmas day from my mama... embroidered antique pillows, the sweetest little clock I ever did see with a 'Hansel and Gretel' scene, gorgeous antique tablecloths (some crocheted, others embroidered) a sweet little snail planter, and antique kitchen tools that match the colors in my kitchen!
.:Amber is an advocate for animals--I think she would smile knowing my kitten is also enjoying her gift!:.
Amber and I were partners in a seasonal swap. Amber shared with me very thoughtful gifts of handmade herbal-infused soaps and tealights, foraged wild Columbine seeds, handmade toffee, and a vintage glass insulator she so thoughtfully added to my small collection.
The most nurturing gift she sent was a handmade pillow made from thrifted flannel. It is filled with sheep wool from a sheep Amber personally knows. Not only does she know this sheep, she also sheared, washed, and carded its wool to add into this most treasured pillow. Intoxicating scents of Lavender and Balsam also mingle inside this pillow, giving me the most magical sleep! My little kitten is constantly drawn to the beautiful scents!
.: I enjoyed giving gifts that once lived in the forest that I now made into something new! :.
This year I worked with a medium that was new to me. I cut lengths of branches from a recently fallen Birch tree and fashioned them into candleholders to give as gifts to family and friends. One also joined our Christmas table with evergreen branches sitting beautifully underneath! I created a puppet stand out of this fallen Birch tree for my children's puppets as well as many tree blocks and postcard holders that also were given as gifts.
.: Waldorf book of blessings and a crystal tealight holder for my eldest son sits upon our table! :.
My eldest son is enamored with gems and minerals. I thought this gorgeous crystal tealight holder would be a very well received gift!
This year we also started a new tradition that will include the creating of a new book of table blessings each year to be opened before our Christmas Eve dinner. It was inspired by this handmade version I purchased from our local Waldorf school. We began this new tradition this Christmas Eve by allowing my eldest son to open this gift and read a blessing from it aloud before our meal.
.: I am enjoying watching, feeding, and photographing the birds! What a gift to have them visit! :.
Our feeders have been filled a few times already during the snow. We are enjoying watching the bird airport right outside our window! While one bird flies in to the feeder, the others wait patiently on the branch hanging overhead--and then back the first bird flies to let in another to the feeders!
.: 'Baby Zuku' our kitten enjoys some time watching the snowfall and birds outside the window :.
As the snow continues to fall, one of my favororite things to do is to wrap up in handmade quilts and read through our ever-growing stack of winter books!
.: I am quite taken by these little walnut and wool felt strawberries made by my eldest son! :.
While receiving thoughtful handmade gifts is lovely, it is giving that my family enjoys most of all! In the days before Christmas we had been so very busy creating. One of the sweetest gifts my eldest son created for his younger sister was this play set of walnut and wool felt strawberries! They are absolutely precious and have already seen so much play!
.: These creative books are inspiring us on these snowy days! :.
While reading winter books and enjoying the coziness of the accompanying illustrations, we are also enjoying a great big stack of books that nurture our creative spirits and our homelife together. It has been pure joy to pour through these books with my family! There is much inspiration to bring us right through the new year!
.: Be still my heart... My daughter is knitting!!! :.
One of my most cherished moments of Christmas this year was when my daughter received the one gift she wished for this year--her very own wooden knitting needles and rainbow yarn.
She has been finger knitting but this was the first time she had asked for her own wooden needles. I knit her just one row as an example and she said "Ok mama, can I do it now?" and off she went to my amazed yet not surprised eyes! (To the mamas who have knitting little ones you know how full my heart is right now!)
.: My youngest son getting ready to slide down the hill and over a snow jump! :.
My little ones received sleds this Christmas, and so with the newly fallen snow we have been out sledding each day on the little hill behind our home.
.: There he goes down the hill and over the jump flying through the air!! :.
.: Time to go back in to enjoy the coziness of home! :.
And when their little cheeks were rosy like their Waldorf dolls they were ready to come indoors for some hot cocoa and homemade marshmallows. Our fluffy friend also enjoyed the snow for a little bit today while wearing his most gorgeous and full winter coat!
.: We are basking in the glow of these most cozy and relaxing days after Christmas and ever so ready to welcome in the new year with great joy! :.