Winter Sunrise

I’m not what would be described as a “morning person”.  No.  I like lazy mornings where I can putter, read in bed for a while, and lounge a bit before I have to get moving.  Needless to say, I don’t catch a lot of sunrises —I’m usually in bed, asleep.

I’ve been trying to be a little better about not hitting the snooze button on my alarm clock 3 times each morning lately.  And in doing so, I’ve made a discovery.  I’m finding something that I enjoy about the shorter winter days: the sunrise comes a bit later. Because the sun doesn’t come out until 7:15-7:30 AM, I’m now actually awake to take in the beauty of a blazingly colorful morning winter sunrise.  The past few days have been really beautiful – purples, melons, blues, peaches, and pinks painting the sky.  This morning I actually thought to grab my camera.

View from our back door this morning.

Waking up and taking in displays like this with a hot mug of coffee in my hand is making winter mornings a special treat.

Winter sunrise over neighboring home seen from our back door.

My pictures a poor substitute for how spectacular the sunrises have been — simply glorious!


Garden in Winter

River Birch Tree's bark

Against the white of the snow and in the absence of leaves and flowers, other features come to the forefront in the garden.  Enjoyed the sunshine and taking in some of the details today— like the fragile texture of the bark on the river birch, and the twisting, coiling shapes of the Harry Lauder Walking Stick’s branches.

The Seussian shapes of the Walking Stick's branches are best enjoyed once it has dropped its leaves.

Smiley Bowl — with Feet!

Today is cold and snowy —the perfect day for something tasty and warm from a bowl!   Oatmeal, soup, or stew —what wouldn’t be a little more enjoyable when eaten from such a charming bowl?  A dear friend gave us a set of 4 of these footed smiling wonders when we got married.  They make me smile every time I use them.

Quick Jaunt: Asheville, North Carolina

My husband and I were lucky enough to have a few days off right after New Year’s Eve, and some lovely friends of our living in Asheville invited us for a visit.  Keeping the old maxim about fish and house guests both smelling after 3 days in mind, we kept our trip brief but oh, how lovely it was!  We ate delicious food at charming places, puttered around downtown Asheville, played Scrabble, took a hike on a clear, crisp day –all while laughing until it hurt.  It was wonderful.  Thank you  so much for your hospitality, Brian and Nora!

Ice formations along the Laurel River Trail

Fishing hole scouting/daydreaming along Laurel River


New Year, New Calendar

I love picking out a new calendar every year.  And although I admire the classic design-y-ness of something like the Stendig calendar

I can’t get past enjoying ones with a monthly image.  Picking a calendar is like making a wish for what the year might hold:  will it be beautiful gardens, cutesy artsy block prints, museums of the world?  Or maybe a monthly picture that makes you giggle or that charms you so that every month is a gift?  So many choices!  What I’m saying is that I enjoy calendar picking time, the browsing and dreaming.

This year’s choice totally makes me smile.  You know those animatronic fortune-teller machines?   The ones where you put in a quarter, it sort of talks and wiggles at you, and then it spits out a card with a fortune printed on it?  This year’s calendar features those fortune tellers — a different one every month.  January features “Old Salty”, the fortune-telling seafarer.

Isn’t that fun?  The best part is at the bottom of the calendar:

Just ask your question (or think it in your head, in my case), push one of the buttons, and it talks, telling your fortune!  Okay, granted, most of the fortunes it’s given me so far have been deliberately vague and slightly sarcastic (“I need to commune with a higher star power, get back to me later”) but that makes it even better in my book.  It’s now adorning the china hutch in the kitchen.

The Zhivago Coat: a Proud Moment in Thrifting

My apologies for the terrible quality of these photos, but hopefully you get the idea.  I found this coat about 13 or 14 years ago while thrifting, and I can still remember what a thrill that was!  This is a fun 70’s knockoff of the iconic Yves Saint Laurent Russian Collection from 1976, and I love it.  It is feminine, warm, hooded, and embroidered —-it ticks a lot of boxes for me.

Sketch from the YSL Russian Collection 1976


At the time, it cost a whole $15 and I  almost passed it up because it was a bit pricey for a thrift find.  But I just loved it and wanted it even though it was expensive.  Then, horrors!  The card machine was down and only cash was accepted.  I only had a $10 bill on me.  Luckily the friend I was thrifting with kindly spotted me a fiver so I could get this coat.  So glad they did, because I still really love this coat and count finding it as one of my proudest moments in thrifting.  I always feel just a tiny bit like Lara from Doctor Zhivago when I wear it. 🙂


Ice Palace from the movie "Doctor Zhivago"