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A Merry Christmas Tour – part 1

Merry Christmas dear friends!  I hope you are enjoying this holiday season to its fullest.  Like many of you, I absolutely LOVE Christmas, even if it does make my brain race with to-do list items from the moment my feet hit the floor in the morning to the moment my head hits the pillow late at night.

And if you are like me, you tell yourself, “Next year, I am starting early (or doing less) so that there is some downtime in this crazy busy time of year.” Right?

We were in Vermont last week staying in our favorite inn in Stowe. In each room there was a single vase with a small evergreen branch.  That was all the Christmas decorating. Period.  Nothing more. I loved it…the beautiful simplicity of it.  And I remarked to my husband, “That’s how I am going to decorate next year.”  He shook his head, looked at me like I had lost my mind and said, “Sure you are.

It would be very hard to restrain myself to just that.

You know as well as my husband does that I kind of…um… go overboard during the Christmas season…just a little bit. 🙂 But I can’t help myself!  This house just seems to be made for Christmas.  All the cozy wood…the shiny brass…all the red. During December those of us that adore red find a way to put red ribbon on everything that doesn’t move! (Even the light fixtures. 🙂 )

And if there is space for a tree in a room, well you know I am going to find a way to put one there.  I started out with an artificial one in the master bedroom, but it just didn’t look right to me.  So I un-decorated it, moved it upstairs to my husband’s office, and bought a freshly cut live one to put in the bedroom…and then decorated it with red ribbon and bows. 🙂

And it’s not just the inside of this house that calls out for Christmas. We have pine and cedar trees all through the woods and 8 gigantic hollies in our yard that are covered with red berries, (and a bunch of other holly varieties too) so how can I possibly resist using all that fresh greenery in our Christmas decorating??

And when I go shopping, there are sooooo many beautiful holiday items in the stores. There doesn’t seem to be much red at other times of the year, but good grief you can find it in December!

My mother’s biggest shopping weakness is dishes, but pillows seem to be mine. I found that new lumbar one with the embroidered holly leaves and pinecones at TJMaxx.  It had red patches that said Fa La La La La on it, but I snipped them off to simplify the design. (I thought the bed already had enough red on it. 🙂 )

With the shorter days, candles seem to make the rooms around here more cozy and add to the festive feel. 🙂

I tried out a little red rug in the bedroom just to see how a striped rug might look in there.  I am thinking of buying a large one possibly in a black stripe soon. What do you think?  Too much?

Here is the space again without it so you can compare.

Each year, I usually begin my Christmas decorating in the master bedroom, and that is where I started this year.  When it was finished it was time to move on to…

the master bathroom with its red paneled antique cupboard.

And I just had to put some greenery on the cabinet by the bathtub.

in yet another red pot of course!

When the bathroom was finished, I moved on to the hall (that was at the top of the post.)  After that it was on to the other bedrooms, and that is what will be in the next post for you to see.  Gabbie and I will be waiting right here to see you then. 🙂 (This photo makes her look huge! She is heavy, but not that heavy.)

Until next time…

You might enjoy these posts:

Robyn - December 23, 2017 - 11:18 am

Your home is gorgeous and especially so at Christmas! I like you LOVE red and I use a lot at Christmas!!! I love the simple touches of fresh greenery and red ribbon!!!

At Rivercrest Cottage - December 22, 2017 - 10:50 am

Kelly, I love how you go overboard for Christmas! Come on, just a branch for decor? You’re kidding right? My how your little dog has grown. Just posted about two abused and rescued chihuahuas my daughter is fostering during the holidays.After little kids, dogs are next in line for Christmas love. Looking forward to the rest of your Christmas decorating.

Peggy Z - December 21, 2017 - 11:56 pm

It is always such a pleasure to open my email and find a post from you. Your house at Christmas always inspires me. And I say yes to the black striped rug. I love your trees. My four year old grandson helped decorate the tree in the living room and the tree is a little bottom heavy. I love to sit and look at it in the evening. Not changing a thing. Wishing you and yours the magic of a Merry Christmas!

Linda Ishmael - December 21, 2017 - 8:24 pm

Love the lumbar pillow!!! I’m going to check out TJMaxx and see if I get lucky and find one!! Merry Christmas!!!

Anita - December 21, 2017 - 7:37 pm

I so love your posts! I was so excited to see you had posted a Christmas Tour Part 1, that just means I have more to look forward to. 🙂 Gabby is growing up and she’s a beautiful fur baby!

Merry Christmas to you and your family.

GramiePamie - December 21, 2017 - 4:52 pm

This was – and is ALWAYS – a treat! Your red ribbons are perfection. And your bedroom is perfection with no rug. IMHO

Kristy - December 21, 2017 - 4:46 pm

Your post was a lovely surprise! No to the red striped rug. I’m not a red person, — I like blues and purples, and now more greens in my holiday décor. I’m leaning toward the greens, but seems to be harder to find. I’ve been ready to cut some fresh spruce from our tree to fill a large vase….still waiting on my DH to do so. Pillows are fantastic additions – (I have to restrain myself from buying dishes/glassware in re-sale & antique shops).Your home is beautifully decorated as always. Can’t wait to see your porch, it’s always my favorite.

Mindy - December 21, 2017 - 1:44 pm

Beautiful & inspiring but please skip the rug:)

Donnamae - December 21, 2017 - 12:22 pm

I absolutely agree…your home is perfectly suited to Christmas decorating…it all looks so festive! I think it’s the paned windows, along with the pine trim, and the wainscoting. My decorations are more muted this year…which suits my 70’s home better. But, I always get lots of ideas from you…so keep it up! 😉

Gina - December 21, 2017 - 10:51 am

Beautiful and festive as always! I’m right there with you “overdoing”it and thinking of ways to plan better, start earlier or simplify. 😀 I have made a lot of changes through the years though. I love all your fresh greenery. How fortunate to have your own supply!! I tend to “overdo” baking and candy making. I definitely have cut back this year!! 😉 It’s a woman thing. 😀

Kaye Ann - December 21, 2017 - 9:48 am

Your decorating always inspires me….. even the evergreen in a vase… I like that.

Merry Christmas my friend!

Cindy - December 21, 2017 - 9:32 am

Merry Christmas, Kelly:
Your home is very welcoming at any time of the year. I love all the Christmas touches; its perfection. I noticed your basket of Christmas books; for over 25 years, I buy a Christmas book, for our home, and now for grand nieces/nephews.
I enjoyed your VT pictures; we are fortunate to live where we have all four seasons and am very happy that we are getting snow tomorrow and Christmas.
Looking forward to part two!

Karen B. - December 21, 2017 - 9:26 am


You always do the best decking of the halls! The red touches are wonderful and festive. I don’t really see you as a minimalist-Christmas-decor kind of person. 🙂

Merry Christmas to you and yours! Enjoy the season.

Stephanie - December 21, 2017 - 8:10 am

Beautifully decorated. Gabbie is all grownup looking now. She is one gorgeous girl.Merry Christmas to All!!🎄🎄🎄
From Tennessee

DiAnne - December 21, 2017 - 6:54 am

Your house was made for Christmas! I love the Christmas tree in the bedroom, the cupboard in the bathroom, and red ribbons everywhere. Ii also like the idea of a single evergreen in a vase . I will have to back to your Stow pictures and see that because I missed it. Sometimes less is more and I have some apts where a single vase with a sprig might just do the trick. I don’t know about the striped rug in there. I think the room is just great without it. Just my opinion though.
Merry Christmas!

Tricia - December 21, 2017 - 3:21 am

Merry Christmas, Kelly! Your home is definatly made for this holiday. Fresh greenery is one of my favourite touches and a real tree is a must in our house.

Looking forward to part 2. Thank you!

Dee - December 21, 2017 - 1:18 am

I was so excited when I opened up my email tonight. What a great Christmas present to hear from you. I love what you’ve done this year for Christmas. I also love the color red and use it every chance I get. I started out to decorate very simply this year but ended with double or maybe triple the decorations I planned on using. Christmas sure has a way of making a person happy. Thank you for sharing. We all have missed you. I am really looking forward to your next post.

Ruth - December 21, 2017 - 1:10 am

Such a wonderful Christmas surprise to find this delightful, cheering holiday tour among my emails! Everything looks so inviting and festive. Thanks for sharing your enthusiasm, inspirations, and fabulous style! What a treat!

Susie - December 20, 2017 - 11:55 pm

Very excited to see your post today. I appreciate your style and talents. Thank you for the glimpse of your Christmas,

Linda Rossi - December 20, 2017 - 11:39 pm

This post was like getting a surprise Christmas present! Your home is so warm and inviting it makes me happy to visit. I love your seasonal and holiday decor and can’t wait for Part II. Thanks so much for sharing. This was such a treat!!

Judy - December 20, 2017 - 11:31 pm

Great to see your lovely home decked out in its Christmas finery. I love this time of the year. I think my house looks its best with the green and red additions. My table is set with my mom’s Apple pattern which lends itself to all those holiday colors. Lanterns with candles, vases filled with red and green, wreaths on the doors and widows- it’s all so lovely. Your vacation in Vermont makes me think …
I’m going to put a red vase with some cedar greenery in my guest room. It will be perfect , thanks for the idea.
Merry Christmas and happy holidays to you and your lovely family. Wishing you good health and great adventures in the new year! 🌲

Pinky - December 20, 2017 - 11:29 pm

Everything looks BEAUTIFUL! I sure envy you being able to just go outside for your fresh greens! Merry Christmas!

Lori Lucas - December 20, 2017 - 11:18 pm

I’m a huge red lover too. —-And everything else about your home too!

Cindy - December 20, 2017 - 10:52 pm

Absolutely DARLING !!!!!!! No to the striped rug ! Too much ! The room looks PERFECT ! Great Job !

Marianne in Mo. - December 20, 2017 - 10:33 pm

So good to have you back! I enjoyed your instagram feed from Stowe! I love all the efforts you put in to decorating for the holidays, but agree – your home is perfect for Christmas! Love the pillow you found too, and I like it the way it is – don’t need those letters. Good idea to take them off. Can’t wait to see what Gabbie has for us in part 2!

julia walker - December 20, 2017 - 10:31 pm

Merry Christmas Kelly! I needed your blog tonight because I haven’t been inspired to decorate. THANK YOU! I love the real tree in your bedroom with the red ribbons. Beautiful!!! And I envy your trip to Vermont. Did you watch “The Sound of Music” Sunday night? Take care. Love, Julia

Terry Cross - December 20, 2017 - 10:19 pm

Your house is beautiful and feels like the perfect Christmasy place to come home too! I’m inspired to add some greenery to my bathroom, it had thus far escaped lol!
Love your sweet Lab, she is gorgeous!

Katrina - December 20, 2017 - 9:42 pm

Oh goodness … so so pretty and yes I feel just like you …. I LOVE Christmas but it sure keeps my brain racing too! I have this cute little Christmas notepad that each night I write a daily to do list for the next day on!
You house looks lovely and I adore your real tree in your bedroom! All your fresh greenery looks great. I seem to always be trying to find fresh magnolia each Christmas. On Monday I was on the way to my granddaughter’s school for the class cookie decorating party and scored big time! I spied a huge pile of fresh magnolia branches waiting on the curb to be picked up by the city. I quick texted my husband who took his truck and gathered it all for me.
I really like your red rug but I think I like your room better without it.
As always you are my favorite blogger! Can’t wait for Part 2!
Merry Christmas Kelly!

Sandy - December 20, 2017 - 9:04 pm

I always love your home at Christmas. There is nothing like fresh greenery too. The holly bushes are a plus for sure this time of year. I have banned myself from buying anymore dishes, but I am on a pillow kick lately. Unfortunately, I discovered an online blog several years ago and she has a shop where she does a seasonal set. Not good, I tell you. I need to show some restraint. AS for the rug, I think I like it better without.
Beautiful as always, Kelly.

Roxanne - December 20, 2017 - 8:50 pm

I love all the red! I collect Santas, so my house is overflowing with red too…can’t have too much! Everything looks so festive and just perfect in your home. Every year I think I won’t go overboard, but once I start opening the storage boxes full of my treasures (and the memories that come with them), I can’t stop myself. On the striped rug….it may compete with the buffalo check curtains, too many big geometrics in close proximity. The pop of color is great there though.

Barbara - December 20, 2017 - 8:27 pm

I always look forward to your Christmas posts and this one didn’t disappoint. As always, thank you for all of the love and effort you put into your blog. I know it’s hard work but it is deeply appreciated. Merry Christmas and every good wish to you and family for the coming year.

Donna - December 20, 2017 - 8:25 pm

I was so happy to see your beautiful home in today’s post . Everything looks so merry and bright ! Even Gabbie was treated to a red bow ! Wishing you and your family a magical Christmas !

Leslie Anne Tarabella - December 20, 2017 - 8:20 pm

Oh, that Gabbie! All grown up and beautiful. I’m with your mom on dishes, but I’ve always been a fan of the way you store all of your fabulous pillows and other linens. That makes it so much easier to find things (I would think)! Merry Christmas to you and all those you love.

Llisaisa - December 20, 2017 - 8:18 pm

Your home looks beautiful & so inviting. I certainly believe more is more when it comes to Christmas decorations. It takes me a full week to get everything done but it’s definitely worth it!
Like you I’ll think next year I’m scaling back but when I see all my treasures waiting to be displayed I just can’t resist. It’s the most wonderful time of the year.
I love your real tree in the bedroom. I imagine the fragrance is divine!
Not sure about that red & white rug. Maybe black & white after Christmas. But everything is lovely.
May you & your family have a blessed Christmas.

Marlene - December 20, 2017 - 8:14 pm

Kelly, I have red throughout my house also. I never tire of it…even in my bedroom. I just so enjoy seeing all your touches that makes it so special. Wishing you a very Merry Christmas. Look forward to part two.

martha - December 20, 2017 - 8:12 pm

I had just thought about you this morning and how much I missed your blog, especially at Christmas. I love red as much as you do and there can never be enough. I’m with Jan about the single evergreen spray….it sounds lovely, but I need more. Thanks for sharing and I look forward to the next post.

Calypso in the Country - December 20, 2017 - 8:11 pm

I always look forward to seeing your home decorated for Christmas! You’re right, your house is made for Christmas with all the red and cozy touches. I do like the idea of the single evergreen in a vase..but I probably couldn’t restrain myself either! Great to hear you were in Stowe last weekend… We were close by in Killington last weekend! Nothing like Vermont this time of year! Thanks for the tour and Merry Christmas to you!

Dawn - December 20, 2017 - 8:10 pm


It is always such a pleasure to see your home decorated for Christmas and I couldn’t agree more that you have the perfect home for it! I love the big red ribbon woven around your book basket. Gabby steals the show though. Thanks for sharing. Take care.


Design Chic - December 20, 2017 - 8:01 pm

I’m always excited when I get your email in December, knowing that your home will be a feast for my eyes. This year is no exception- it looks amazing! I love all of the red bows, trees and garland. Like your husband, I can’t imagine a vase with a single evergreen branch – no, you’re right, your house is made for Christmas! Wishing you and your family a wonderful Christmas!

jae - December 20, 2017 - 8:00 pm

Beautiful! Im thinking the single evergreen spray in a vase would be a good winter look, but Christmas? Never! Like you, I need red, red, red or it just doesnt look like Christmas. Hope yours is merry!

A Little Thanksgiving Tour – Part 2

Happy Thanksgiving, and welcome back for part 2 of our little tour! I’m guessing you are in the middle of your to-do list for Thursday’s big dinner, so thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to stop in for a visit here today. 🙂

As we prep all the food and get things ready for this meal, I can’t help but think of the countless Thanksgiving dinners I’ve enjoyed in the past. Growing up, our family never traveled “over the river and through the woods” to any relative’s home for the holiday. It was always Thanksgiving with just my parents and my siblings at our home.

My brother and sister and I would wake early to the smell of a turkey roasting in the oven.  (Heaven only knows what time my mother got started in the kitchen on that day!)  We would watch the Thanksgiving Day parades on television, and then my father would take us children outside to rake leaves in the yard. I am guessing part of the thinking behind this was to keep us out of our mother’s way in the kitchen. Smart man.

Our home sat in the first row of a large pecan orchard, so there were a lot of leaves to get up.  We would all rake them into large piles, and then we’d rake those piles onto big white bed sheets (yes really!)

Once the sheet had a pile my father deemed substantial enough, one of us would grip one end of the sheet with my father grasping the other, and we’d haul them to dump into the flower beds for mulch.

I’m sure along the way there were episodes of “jump in the leaf pile” with one of our beagles much like the scene from A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving.

We’d take a break at lunch to go inside for the big meal my mother had single-handedly prepared.  We’d sit in the formal dining room with the olive green carpet.  My father would say grace, thanking God for our many blessings, and then we’d eat with the real silver, dining off green flowery bordered Noritake china, the Princeton pattern if  I remember correctly.

There was always turkey and dressing, ambrosia, deviled eggs, that wiggly jellied cranberry sauce, (that kept its perfect shape as it slid out of its can) a green bean casserole with the crunchy onion topping, celery sticks stuffed with pimento cheese, (my favorite!)  and a sweet potato casserole with that toasted marshmallow topping that we all fought over. For dessert, we would have pecan pie with shelled pecans from our orchard, made from the recipe on the back of the Karo syrup bottle.

There were probably other dishes as well, but they don’t stand out in my memory like these do.  I’m always amazed to think that my mom was able to serve all of those dishes out of her one little oven.  Just think how many of those things had to be baked!

And then after stuffing ourselves silly it was time for….watching football on tv? Nope.  Back to raking of course!  It was the Thanksgiving tradition! (I’m sure that’s what the Pilgrims and Native Americans did when they finished their feast, right? 🙂 )

And this tradition has continued for many many years. Even through college, when I would come home from good ol’ GSC (now GSU) for the holiday break, we would eat the traditional turkey and dressing meal and rake the yard on Thanksgiving Day.

Then I married, and I attended my first Thanksgiving with my husband’s family…quite a different affair.  His family has a BIG reunion with scads of aunts, uncles, and assorted cousins enjoying their meal….60+ people (rather overwhelming for a young bride!)

But good grief at the food!  It has always been “organized potluck” with specific dishes requested each year…my mother-in-law’s turkey and dressing, Janna’s sweet potato souffle, Lee’s green bean and corn casserole, an aunt’s ambrosia, and many many many more!  I always bring my raspberry ribbon salad (recipe here.)  (And we all playfully fight over the corner piece of Wanda’s caramel cake. 🙂 )

And in addition to all these family gatherings, I remember 30 years of school Thanksgiving dinners.

Each year on the Thursday before the Thanksgiving break, all the schools in the county have a “holiday meal.” (That’s what it’s called on the menu.)  In the elementary schools this was always a big deal.

Yards and yards of bulletin board paper would be rolled out to cover the tables.  In the art classes, centerpieces would be created from construction paper, perhaps toilet paper rolls, and even the proverbial pine cone.

The lower grades would create Native American head dresses and vests or Pilgrim caps and collars.  (It’s amazing what you can do with construction paper, scissors, and glue!)

And everyone would design paper placemats to use at their spot so that they didn’t get anything on the paper “tablecloths.”  This was a big deal because not only would other classes sit where you sat as the lunch rotation went through the cafeteria, but PARENTS were invited to this meal as well…and you sure didn’t want to leave a mess where a parent might possibly sit!

Some schools turned off the lights and lit candles for this meal. Heaven help us if the fire marshall ever showed up! We would have had a major “paper overuse” violation with an open flame on top of that!   But it would have been worth the write up.  When the excited children, all dressed in their paper costumes, came through that lunchroom door and saw all the decorations, their eyes would widen in awe.  They would point at the tables and just take it all in. It was a big deal. 🙂

And of course the wonderful lunch ladies prepared turkey and dressing (the recipe of which my mother-in-law still uses today!) On top of that delicious dressing would be a tiny white paper cup holding a spoonful of cranberry sauce, most of which none of the students would touch.  But there would always be one or two children in each class who would ask the kids around them, “Are you going to eat your cranberry sauce?” And before you know it, they would have 7 or 8 of those cups of it in their possession!

Years ago, those “holiday meals” included a scoop of sweet potato casserole with that yummy marshmallow topping, but I think that has been abandoned through the years with school lunchrooms having to be more mindful of nutrition. Some years there would be ambrosia made with oranges, coconut, and maraschino cherries, and other years would have an apple and raisin salad.  There would be those big amazing yeast rolls and a square of cake – maybe spice, maybe vanilla with a coconut frosting, or perhaps vanilla with a chocolate frosting.

Many of the children would have parents come and dine with them.  I would always sit with the ones that had no guests so that they would have “somebody.” And year after year, there would always be a child who would quietly ask me if they could wrap up their serving of cake to take home to a grandparent because “they would love it.” So we would carefully wrap it in a paper napkin, put it in a ziplock bag when we got back to the classroom, and they would take it home in their bookbag at the end of the day (along with an extra piece or two I retrieved from the sweet lunch ladies.)

Soooo many Thanksgivings to remember…and so much to be thankful for…family, friends, good health, a safe place to call home.  Our law school son will travel with friends to Montreal, and our Seattle son will be celebrating a Friendsgiving with his 4 new housemates and a group of friends.  I am sad our boys won’t be here this year, but I am thankful they each have friends with which to celebrate.

We’ll be splitting the day between families and having one meal here. I set up both the porch and dining room for you to see.  I would like to dine on the porch (just look at that view!) but I think it will be too cool, and we’ll have to eat in the dining room.  We won’t be raking leaves at my parents’ home because I have “mowed” their leaves, and the yard is clean!

Now I’m off to finish my to-do list.  There is a raspberry ribbon salad to make and bunches of turnips to wash and oranges to peel (all while listening to Christmas music. 🙂 )  Enjoy your day tomorrow!  Whether you are having a Thanksgiving meal with a small group, a big family reunion, or joining in a Friendsgiving someplace, I hope you have a very blessed day…remembering all that you are thankful for.  I count you as one of my blessings!

Until next time…
(when there will be Christmas decorations!)


You might enjoy these posts:

Rosemary - December 4, 2017 - 2:56 am

Hi Kelly, sorry I’m a little late commenting. Such a beautifully written post. Thanks for sharing all your Thanksgiving memories …I can picture them so clearly.
Safe travels on your journey to Vermont. Have fun and take care.

Becky in 'Bama - November 30, 2017 - 4:40 pm

Catching up with your posts: made me a little teary to read your school lunch remembrances. We did our family meal on Thanksgiving Eve – so on the actual day – was just me and the hubs. I didn’t rake but used the blower to pile up some leaves, and then put up my Christmas tree – quite a chore since it’s all of 3 feet tall. LOL We did enjoy some tasty leftovers and a couple of naps – so I was thankful for that day for sure. It’s just my immediate family now – all the parents and grandparents, etc.. – are gone. So we are a smaller group but still enthusiastic for the food. Can’t wait to see your Christmas Decor.

Kristy - November 27, 2017 - 1:15 pm

I hope you had a lovely Thanksgiving, Kelly. Thank you for your lovely posts. We were traveling the weekend prior & I had lots of catch-up to do upon arrival home. I am so glad to see someone else prepares a turnips dish for their Thanksgiving meal. Your posts are always inspiring.

Galen - November 27, 2017 - 8:28 am

So sweet of you to share your precious memories – as warm and inviting as your home.

kathy - November 26, 2017 - 8:44 pm

I LOVED this post! It made me miss school for a skinny second. LOL! Do you have the “lunch ladies dressing” recipe? Every year I try to duplicate it. This year was the closest but I still don’t have it down. (I knew you would be the kind of teacher who would sit with the children without parents at the Thanksgiving school lunch.) I love hearing traditions like yours of raking leaves and pecan pie. I remember Thanksgivings with my grandparents and lots of cousins. One uncle always scared me into thinking if they didn’t shoot a turkey that morning we wouldn’t have Thanksgiving dinner. I still try to include foods my grandmother made…the lime salad that only I eat and my nephew says “doesn’t look like a salad to me”. My grandmother made the prettiest cakes right out of Good Housekeeping. The Christmas Parade in High Point was on Thanksgiving Day and it seemed like the coldest day of the year watching and waiting for Santa. In high school I was a majorette and absolutely FROZE in that skimpy uniform marching in the parade. I am thankful for warm Thanksgivings now. Your blog inspires me more than any other. I bought red plates to put under my turkey plates and have switched over to a Christmas salad plate now. I can’t wait for more blog posts!!!

Lynn A. - November 26, 2017 - 2:24 pm

Love, love, love pimento cheese stuffed celery sticks. Didn’t know anyone else liked it as much. 🙂 - November 26, 2017 - 1:21 pm

Hi Kelly: I love your decor, but also enjoyed so much hearing about your Thanksgiving memories! I can really relate to your memories of those elementary “holiday meals.” It makes me happy to see a post from you!

Lanita Anderson - November 25, 2017 - 3:46 pm

I loved seeing your Thanksgiving decorations and tablescapes….so pretty and creative!! Hope you and your family enjoyed a wonderful Thanksgiving together! Can’t wait to see your Christmas decor…

Gina - November 25, 2017 - 3:18 pm

Aww, I loved reading your Thanksgiving memories. I could just imagine those children in the lunchroom asking for the cranberry sauce. 😀 Love your beautiful view from your porch!!I’m kinda jealous. I have a mountain behind mine. :O

Maria - November 25, 2017 - 7:20 am

Your raspberry ribbon salad sounds just like my mother’s side dish only her’s is made with lemon and lime jello and has walnuts instead of pecans, with a few mandarin oranges thrown in too. Unfortunately, we never found a good name for this dish and have always just referred to it as “the Mold” as in Jello made in a mold. So its a hard sell for the younger generation🤗I think i have to change it now to Lemony Ribbon Salad and I’ll pick up a few customers. Thx for the lovely post and Happy Holidays.🎄🦃

Deb - November 25, 2017 - 6:49 am

Thank you so much for sharing your sweet memories. Especially your school memories, I just retired this year and miss the students with their pilgrim and Indian attire! Happy Thanksgiving

Anita - November 24, 2017 - 9:29 pm

This post brings so many memories to mind. What fun we had with all the costumes and food. I love reading your posts; you have such a gift with words. Hope your Thanksgiving was wonderful and I’m looking forward to your Christmas decorations.

Donnie - November 24, 2017 - 6:06 pm

Always a pleasure. Hope your Thanksgiving was wonderful. Blessings to you and your family.

Susie - November 24, 2017 - 8:52 am

Wonderful setting and wonderful story to accompany this grateful holiday- thank you Kelly,

Vicki - November 23, 2017 - 10:33 pm

I tried to teach a grandchild that very song this morning. She has an hour drive to my house and very rural countryside. So it was ” Over the river and through the woods…” Lol. You have been a blessing in my life. Thank you!

Marianne in Mo. - November 23, 2017 - 9:33 am

First – Happy Thanksgiving!
Now, my comments.
I was so entranced with your words, I read them first, then went back to look at your as always,awesomely decorated home! Many of your comments hit home with me; the kids not being with you, the first Thanksgiving with the in laws family, the childhood family, and most of all the school lunch. Growing up, I always enjoyed that special lunch, because it made me feel especially loved, and a part of the whole, more than any other day of school. I was a “free lunch” kid, and often felt sensitive about that fact. I felt judged, even if no one said a word. I knew, and that was just another way I felt different. But that special lunch day, I didn’t feel different, because we were all having the same meal, and were all, somehow, a big family.
Thank you for stopping to share these memories with us. And now…I must go and get that dinner in the oven!

Joyce - November 22, 2017 - 9:59 pm

Hi Kelly, Once again you made my day! Your memories are so much like mine. We must have been raised by the same parents!…..Today I turned 77yr and I can remember grade school like it was yesterday……I have pics of my paper pilgrim costume…..can’t get to it right now as we are in the process of moving to our new property… to be built this next Spring…..your house is such a nice inspiration too! I too am so Thankful to God for His many blessings down through the years!
Thank you for your post!

julia walker - November 22, 2017 - 9:48 pm

I’m thankful for you Kelly~blessings, Julia

Judy - November 22, 2017 - 7:26 pm

Thanks for a lovely trip down memory lane for me. As my siblings and I got older, my family stayed home for Thanksgiving. Mom would get up at an ungodly hour to put the bird in the oven. As we helped with the prep, we were always watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. We especially loved the performance by the Rockettes. To this day, my daughter calls from her home in NY to remind me in Florida to turn on the TV to watch the festivities. This year, she has a new young daughter who will be watching the parade with her tomorrow. It will make me feel good just to think about this holiday tradition being passed on to a new generation. May you and your family have a safe and happy Thanksgiving day. We all have so much for which we are thankful this year.

Donna,ae - November 22, 2017 - 7:13 pm

I was just reminiscing with my cousin today about Holidays past that we used to celebrate together. Your table looks lovely. Happy Thanksgiving…let the feasting begin! 😉

Cynthia Hamsley - November 22, 2017 - 6:55 pm

Kelly, I enjoyed hearing about all of your Thanksgiving memories. We all have so much to be thankful for. I am thankful for your precious blog. Thank you for sharing your gifts of decorating with all of us. You are so talented. God’s blessings to your families during Thanksgiving. So blessed to have you as a friend.

At Rivercrest Cottage - November 22, 2017 - 6:16 pm

What a sweet story about your cafeteria when you were teaching. I cannot imagine how hard it is to see some sadness among the festivities, but I’m glad you were there for them. Our school cafeteria in the mid-50’s to 60’s had a wonderful woman in charge called Mrs. Beasley. I remember very little about my teachers, but can picture Mrs. Beasley’s face oh so many years later! Thanks for reminding me of these sweet memories.

Ren - November 22, 2017 - 4:19 pm

This is such a heart warming post. It brought back memories of Thanksgivings past for me. At my parents home, the ladies cleaned up everything after the feast while the men watched football. And I remember what an exciting time the Thanksgiving Feast at school was. Thank you for taking the time to share this post with your readers on this very busy day. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Sandy - November 22, 2017 - 4:05 pm

Oh, you brought back my memories of the first grade Thanksgiving lunches we held for sixteen years. Students dressed as Pilgrims and Indians thanks to our art teacher. After thirty-two years hosting Thanksgiving dinners at our home, I told my daughter it’s her turn. Therefore, we have dinner reservations at 1:30 for her family, her in-laws, and us. Small steps, ha, ha.
Wishing you and yours a blessed Thanksgiving. Eager to read and see your house decked out for Christmas. So happy you are finding some time to post your blog. Really missed you.

Debbie - Mountain Mama - November 22, 2017 - 3:03 pm

What a lovely post, Kelly, it’s so nice to get this background into your life! My parents are from Ireland so Thanksgiving was not as big of a deal to us growing up, not until my sister took over the holiday once she got married. Christmas is a bigger holiday in Ireland, so that was always quite the celebration and I have wonderful memories of Christmas as a child! Have a very happy Thanksgiving….and I’m so glad you no longer have to rake those leaves!! 🙂

Carola Crisp - November 22, 2017 - 2:21 pm

I loved reading your memories…thanks for sharing.
Your home is so serene and lovely, too.
Happiest of Thanksgiving to You and Yours!

Kathy - November 22, 2017 - 1:04 pm

Such a beautiful post. We all have so much to be grateful for. Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family.

Carol Ann - November 22, 2017 - 12:37 pm

In addition to your many other talents…. you are an excellent writer. Love reading about your Thanksgivings. I can relate to so many of your traditions. Happy Thanksgiving and as always…thankful for you too. 🍂🏈🦃

Design Chic - November 22, 2017 - 12:36 pm

So fun remembering Thanksgivings through the years and like yours, ours have changed over time, but always a special time with family and friends. Wishing you and your beautiful family a wonderful holiday!

Marlene - November 22, 2017 - 12:25 pm

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving. So love hearing about your Thanksgiving memories. So similar to mine. I always wondered how my Grandmother could do it all in her kitchen. Everything was so delicious! I can smell it now. Blessing to you and your family.

Terri - November 22, 2017 - 12:22 pm

I so enjoyed reading this post …. brings back so many wonderful memories of much the same as you….. ( Except for the leaves … lolol) … My daughter is a school teacher and so I still get to enjoy some of those wonderful Holiday dinners and decorating with her and the grands at their school !!! Happy Thanksgiving

Karen W. - November 22, 2017 - 12:21 pm

Kelly, I cried sweet tears of remembrance as I read your post. As a retired teacher, I pictured many years of Thanksgiving lunches lovingly prepared by school lunch ladies. Recent lunches with grandchildren are added to my memories. Their lunch ladies still use some of the old recipes! Large family dinners have been replaced with just our small gathering with our two daughters and their families, but we still carry on traditions of cookie turkeys with candy corn tail feathers, pine cone turkey placecards, and dishes prepared from family recipes. Thank you so much for sharing this post with us. I am always so pleased to see one of your posts in my inbox. Happy Thanksgiving!

Barbara (WA) - November 22, 2017 - 12:19 pm

Such wonderful stories shared, Kelly, thank you! Happy Thanksgiving!

Pippa - November 22, 2017 - 12:05 pm

It is so wonderful to see you posting your holiday splendor and think everything you do is so special and done with such love! When counting blessings, you are right in there on my list – the joy and happiness you’ve shared over the years has been a great inspiration to me and we love your thoughtful design sense!

Know this is off topic, but hope you were able to read the new Mitford book – “To Be Where You Are”. LOVED it to the nth degree and of course, there were a few puddles of tears as Jan captured the life and times of this special place. Really felt like it was set up to continue the story further which thrilled me to the nth degree. I reread the entire series again and reveled in the simple joys that it shares. Gratitude always rings true in Mitford. And having two little children being such a part of the story was pure delight! Oh, the joy of it all!!!

And much gratitude is felt for you and yours – thank you again for all you share and inspire! Hugs from the Rockies, Pippa

Dawn - November 22, 2017 - 12:02 pm


Thanks for sharing! I count you as a blessing as well! Happy Thanksgiving!


Anne from Atlanta - November 22, 2017 - 11:59 am

Wow! We had to rake leaves, too, on Thanksgiving. I thought we were the only ones. We ate in the middle of the day so we got to start after Thanksgiving dinner so that we could watch the Parade in the morning. Thanks for sharing your memories. Love your beautiful home all dressed up for the holiday.

Sandy - November 22, 2017 - 11:43 am

I loved reading your memories. Very similar to mine, even the school memories..just not the raking of the leaves. I visited your neck of the woods this past August. I picked up our newest Springer Spaniel from Lanewood Kennels. The area was so pretty with all the pecan trees. I really want to come back one day and go to downtown Perry. I lived in Columbus twice in my life, but never made it to central Georgia. It is so pretty and your view from the porch is lovely.
Have a great Thanksgiving.

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