Sunday, November 15, 2009

Quilting Bee #31

This lovely quilt is by Tonya

Good morning all!! As you can see I have decorated for the holidays! Whoo hoo!! I thought some festive food would be fun. Although what we all consider holiday food is different! So I will offer up one of our family favorites to kick off the season. We have delicious home baked know the yeasty delicious kind. Can ya smell them just out of the oven? Several types of cheese to put upon the rolls and fresh squeezed orange juice. I also have fresh fruit, melon, apple, pears, bananas. Deliciousness!! Kona coffee of course and teas...oh and several juices..right out of the juicer!! You choose. Delicious yogurt and granola for topping!! I have racked a festive quilt today! Please pull up a chair and join me!! Thank you for coming again today!! I love it when you visit!

I was thinking about the holidays and expectations this week. I feel Christmasy sooner than normal this year. At the beginning of the season - Fall..we had several very deep frosts. Sadly it killed all of the leaves just as they were beginning to turn. They fell off..mostly green. The oaks hung in there and gave us a bit of color..but seriously..we had no Fall at all this year. Kinda went from September to November! It depressed me, it really did. I adore the fall..I look forward to it..expect it to be glorious! This year..not glorious..just sad really. So after I got over heart started craving Christmas!! Hitting Target this weekend didn't help. Christmas everywhere..whoo hoo!

But here is the thing..this is about the time the expectations start..those hopes and wishes for the season. Whether it is for some wonderful gift or to feel that joy you did as a child. Often, come the end of December we are sad and depressed,as our expectations have not been met. We have been let down by someone or just never caught the joy of the season. Some years it's just hard to get into the spirit. Sometimes life happens instead and we just want to skip the whole thing!

I have a hard time with the gift receiving thing..I love, love, love to get just the very perfect gift..I listen all year to what folks love and keep it in my head. I love to give fun, thought filled gifts. Gifts of thought. Yeah I am one of those people. I love gift giving. I think this is why when someone gives me a gift of little thought..I get hurt. Honestly I would rather not get something than to receive a gift of no thought. You know the kind I mean..that OMG stop at the drug store on the way over kind of gift. That said....I am also aware that I am overly sensitive about this subject..expectations about gifts.

But there was more to this than just people forgetting me at important times or giving me something of little expectations were based on what I saw society doing. Sometimes that is a catch 22. We are overwhelmed by information these days..what everyone else is doing for the holidays, birthdays, vacations..etc. etc. We often base how our marriage is doing by what others say.."What do you mean your not having sex 8 times a week and twice on Sunday..there must be something wrong with your marriage." No not so much...we spend alot of time looking outside of ourselves for reassurance that our lives are "normal".

You all know how I feel about normal. Here it comes, ya ready....normal isn't always what you are looking for in life!! Sometimes uncommon is wonderful, strange is fun, quirky can crack you up. Sometimes when you box yourself into expectations of what will happen in a marriage, friendship or well..Christmas..what you miss is that chance to experience the new and different. If you are stuck in the holiday rut and are not experiencing the joy of the season..step outside of the box. Step away from your traditions and make some new ones..or just add something new this year. Something fun, crazy, silly..wonderfully not normal!!

So this post is a reminder to myself to breathe new life into the holidays..let go of expectations and find new wonderful things that give me joy every day this holiday season. My motto this and different is good. So maybe if you struggle with this might try some "not normal" things for the season. Just a thought...give it a try and see what joy you find!! I will be stepping aside and letting my husband Fly in the kitchen. He loves to make I am buying up all of the ingredients to his delights. Now if I could just get him to clean up afterwards..giggle!! We shall see if I can stay out of the kitchen as he Lets Fly with the flour and powdered sugar..whoo hoo!! I think I will sit in the living room with hot cocoa alone, as the kids will be helping Jim..and watch the first Harry Potter!! Whoo hoo. May your holidays be filled with wonder and joy and lots of blissful not normal. Please share with us today something you do during the holidays that brings you joy! Or maybe something you would like to try this year.

Ok I would like a nice hot roll, some mild cheddar and a glass of that wonderful fresh squeezed orange juice..yummmm. Can I get something for you? Thank you for being here bless me with your presence. Namaste, Sarah


Dede said...

Normal is so boring. I enjoy making gifts for the holidays. Most years I make candy and breads. About the middle of November the requests start rolling in for their "favorite" gift. LOL This year Brenda has helped me out with some of her wonderful handmade slippers.


Gail H. Ragsdale said...

I love fall and winter! I've had a horrid 5 months. Wish you you closer so we could talk.

In light and love~

Debra She Who Seeks said...

Love the Xmas blog makeover! I know what you mean about gifts of little thought. I used to view them almost as an insult. But then I realized that those kinds of gifts come from shallow people. You can't give a gift of depth and meaning if that's not what's inside you!

Bonnie, Original Art Studio said...

Sarah - What a beautiful Christmas makeover! I love coming here on Monday mornings. A second cup of coffee would be great!

Snap said...

Magnificent post! Loved every word. Mr. Dragon is threatening to make cookies this year and I'm going to let him. Love the new redecorating!

Sonia ;) said...

This past year has been rough for many...I am not expecting anything...As of lately normal and not normal has kicked my tush...Like Gail I wish we were all have some tea and chat...

xoxoxoxoxoxxoxo love ya quacker

magikalseasons said...

Wonderful post as always. I'm thinking a wonderful gift would be all your quilting bees made into a book.:) This year I will have house guests. They will be with us for a month. I'm not sure what to expect and I will make the best of it. I will learn to make my mother-in-laws famous greek bread. I will tape her making it because she doesn't measure anything. This year we are all getting ice skates. I can't wait to fall on my butt! Love the holiday blog makeover too! xoxo Becca

Wild Roaming One (WRO) said...

I love your new blog's so very seasonal and warm looking!

I find I have different feeling around this time of's already a struggle for us financially, and like you, I enjoy the it's hard to see the perfect gift and not be able to get it. On the other hand, I get caught up in the magic of Light that settles over so many of us...and I enjoy taking my wee daughter to the seasonal events around town, the decorated department store windows and filling her heart with the magic of the season too.

Oh, and lest I forget about all the social's my favorite part! Thank you for the delectable munchies Sarah...


Suzie said...

Sarah, you gave me the laugh that I needed this morning, and the first excited spark in thinking "holidays!". Thank you!!

Just another perspective on gifts. I used to feel just as you do, that something should come from the heart. Those are the gifts that I always give, and consequently shop all year long, picking up, or making those special items that I literally quiver with anticipation when the recipient is opening them. Fortunately, I've never fallen short of giving them what they love, or else they are good actors. I would be more upset if someone didn't like what they received from me, than the other way around.

But in thinking about it,(with age comes little bits of wisdom) that it putting a lot of pressure on them to reciprocate in kind. I know this sounds immodest, but we are all of different minds, which is normally delightful, but not everyone can think creatively. Their gift may be mainstream, store bought, seemingly at the last minute, but unless we are truly inside their heads and hearts, how are we to know that their gift wasn't as heart felt as our well thought out ones are. That may be the best that they can conjure up, and are giving it their all.

My darling Hubs is one of those people. I went through a lot of holidays of stifling an ache, so as to not hurt his feelings. I knew that the gift itself, no matter how unromantic, didn't relfect how he felt about me. He just can't express it in that way, and I was the one making myself miserable over unrealistic expectations. Having him in my life is my greatest gift!

And yes! Society, and especially the media puts so much pressure on people to come through for the holidays, we all begin to feel like failures. It is time to step back, and truly think about how precious just being together and sharing the events of the season is to us.

Sarah, when you get a chance, bop on over to my blog. .you are mentioned once again, and ALWAYS in a good way! lol

Many Hugs!

Suzie said...

Sarah,I apologize for misunderstanding part of what you are saying.(chocolate cookie dough high will do that to you!) Yes, I can sadly relate to forgotten milestones too. Birthdays especially, and yes, it does hurt, even if you try to make light of it. Maybe if we all band together, to fill in the gaps, it won't hurt so much. I've found that dear friends can help heal what blood relatives can tear apart.

If you can't find the book, let me know. I'd be happy to share!

More hugs! (one can never have too many!)

Brenda LaBell said...

Sarah, what a beautiful sentiment. I have always loved to give and receive handmade gifts. Although I would really love a new vacuum cleaner this year, lol. See what happens after you've been married 28 years. I would have had a cow if my husband bought me something for the house during our first 15 years of marriage, hahahahaha. My grandkids (4 & 5) always give me the best gifts something they colored, my annual handmade ornaments and a big hug and kiss from each, now that's Christmas Spirit, love it!!


Kat_RN said...

The Holiday decorations look great. Mine are not out of the "attic" yet, but soon.

Joanna Jenkins said...

First, I'm just catching up after being away for too long--

Maple Hill #1 is FANTASTIC! Really, beautiful. And your new blog design for the holidays is perfect!

As for holiday expectations-- I hear you. Been there, done that and got the thoughtless gift way too many times. I'm going to hold on to your suggestion for this year and "let it all go".

For the holidays I always buy Godson a special Christmas decoration for the tree and include a date on it. This year will be #13. I hope b the time he is grown and has his own home he'll have enough to decorate a small tree of his own.

And I bake, and bake and bake for the holidays! It's relaxing for me and I like bringing a homemade gift to friends and parties.

Happy holidays Sarah!

cinner said...

Everytime I visit there is always so much new to see. I love that your in the christmas spirit. I try to put alot of thought into my gifts...I am having a little trouble this year as it will be the first Christmas without my Dad, so yes I will start some new traditions. Happy holidays to you and your family...and yes if they would only clean the kitchen. lol.

Sheila said...

Pur-TEE, pur-tee, Sarah. Can't bring myself to overlook MY fave holiday of the year to start getting Christmas-y this soon. But the day after Thanksgiving I'll unpack the nativity and then it's on a roll from there.

I think some just don't trust themselves to be on target with gifting and are afraid to take the risk. I used to know someone who gave EVERYONE they knew the very same 'token' so no one could possibly be offended. Kind of commonly done I think.

Oh...'Twould be SOOOOOO delightful if we all could in fact and in person sit down together for Quilting Bee. Reading your description of the refreshments makes my mouth water. And of course, go for more coffee.

Renee said...

Sarah wonderful you.

You are a gift to all of us who love you all year long.


Anonymous said...

I don't believe there is such a thing as normal and it fits me fine! :)

Alicia @ boylerpf said...

This one hit close to home, dear Sarah. With all the information overload, both the DH & I have felt that Christmas is not what it used to be...there is just sooo much of everything! We always do handmade gifts as they are special to us and hope that the person that receives them feels they are special too. Alas, it is the mass marketing that drives us just kills the spirit and joy. I love your idea of not being the norm...which we never have been but really need to explore more avenues that bring back the joy and spirit.
As your quilting bees...even if I'm a day late!!

Miss jane said...


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