Monday, December 30, 2013

Christmas Two Thousand and Thirteen



I hope that everyone had a wonderful and joyous holiday! 

Like some of you, we lost power the night before Christmas Eve due to the major ice storm that swept the Northeast and Midwest. The power came back on Christmas night (thanks to the help of crews from other states to help mend fallen power lines) and we rejoiced. 

Here a few scenes from the last week. 


I bought about a dozen battery-operated candles for the house, which I love! Little did I think that they would also come in handy when the power was out. It's great that they can run all night without worry - I am a huge fan of them. I think that we'll continue to leave a few out throughout the year. 

I started my amaryllis and paper white bulbs about a week before Christmas, so we haven't enjoyed their blossoms quite yet. Perhaps they will be here by the New Year. 


A quiet glimpse into the snowy wonder. 


I never tire of the scene just outside that window. 


I snapped this picture on our Christmas Eve. We postponed the holidays for a couple of days when the power was out, because it was just too hard to keep up with simple tasks of keeping everybody warm and fed. So after we regained power, our delayed Christmas Eve felt extremely warm and cozy - for both heart and soul. 

Here is the living room, enjoying the twinkle of the candles (battery operated) and tree lights. 


My dear friend Kate told me about this lovely Swedish chime candle that she'd been enjoying with her sweet twin boys. I ordered one for our family and our little dumplings just love watching the angels spin around and ring the chimes. We lit it every night, and will continue to until the candles have expired. 

Christmas morning. 

And of course, there's the food...There's always the food. So good. 


Using local organic carrots and butternut squash, Mike made an AMAZING soup
AMAZING. We had something similar at one of our favorite local bakeries and our sweet dumplings gobbled it up. 


With a little sprinkle of cinnamon on top, it's especially festive. 


Mike also made some buckwheat pancakes. We have a wheat and egg allergy in our family so we've been exploring new recipes. This recipe requires no added sugar as the pureed dates provide the sweetness. They were fantastic. Locally harvested maple syrup helps make them the perfect breakfast treat. 


There were also sweet potato muffins, which we made for our new neighbors. Mike's last batch (he made four) had a couple of minutes left when the power went out. He also made a special version for us that were wheat and egg free. 

I ended up eating about a half dozen during the power outage. 

HAPPY HOLIDAYS TO YOU ALL! 

xoCatherine 

64 comments :

  1. Merry Christmas! We had many close to us that lost power, but ours only flickered a few times. We were very grateful.

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  2. I was thinking about you and Joan up there in the Northeast with the ice storms...my daughter in Connecticut wasn't affected. Looks like Christmas was a hit! Hopefully all those fireplaces are usable and helped keep you warm. Happy New Year!!! donna :)

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  3. Happy holidays and happy new year !!!!!!

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  4. Merry Christmas! It's so good to see your post and hear that you all are doing well. You have definitely put your lovely touch on your new home. Everything is beautiful and the food looks delish. So glad to hear you have power and could enjoy the holiday. Best wishes for the New Year!

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  5. It probably felt like a Christmas miracle when the power came back on! I'm so glad your warm and cozy now, and that scene outside your window looks like it could be a painting - so lovely!
    I adore your decorations and furnishings, beautiful home!

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  6. Merry Christmas! It's so good to see your post and hear that you all are doing well. You have definitely put your lovely touch on your new home. Everything is beautiful and the food looks delish. So glad you have power and could enjoy the holidays. Best wishes for the New Year! Deni

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  7. I am glad to hear your family got through this cold and challenging time! Thank you...I so enjoyed seeing your photos!

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  8. Oh I remember I have long been wondering: in your "old" kitchen, which is currently providing inspiration to a simple sprucing up in my home, did your open shelves have a ridge in them to set plates in? For standing up?
    Thank you!

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  9. Merry Christmas. Glad all was warm and well... happy for restored power.

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  10. Hi Kathleen, No they did not. I used earthquake putty (I think that's what it's called). It's a bit of play dough like substance that you can roll out into pieces to hold things in place. I used them as a ridge to prop the plates up with. Best, Catherine

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  11. So lovely. I would like a chime candle also! Can you provide link so I can order one. Thanks

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  12. Catherine your 'new' rental home is divine. We too live in the Northeast (just outside NYC in Westchester County) in a similarly old home (1740 saltbox). I love seeing your home photos because it reminds me that we're not the only crazy ones who live (and love) a primitive, rustic surrounding. Do you happen to know the grey trim paint color? London Fog? Somehow Christmas is just that much more magical in an old home. Thanks for sharing.

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  13. I am loving what you have done with your home…so sorry about the storm! I am also a big fan of the candles….perfect when you have young children…yet still add a glow

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  14. Simply beautiful! Thank you for sharing and Happy New Year! Mickey in snowy and cold northwest PA.

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  15. Just finding this. It seems your Christmas was very merry. Kiss the dumplings for me. Happy New Year!

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  16. This is a link to the chime: http://www.amazon.com/Original-Swedish-Angel-Chimes-9011B/dp/B000YP69HO/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1388417966&sr=8-1&keywords=swedish+chime

    And Jaime the color of the trim is unknown - we had to have it matched for touch-ups.

    Best, Catherine

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  17. Your home is charming as usual... Isn't it wonderful how a storm could bring such peace and serenity....The buckwheat pancakes look yummy. Going to try those. Have a great New Year... Blessings!

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  18. ...I just love the simplicity in which you decorate. I don't see pictures cluttering the walls or smalls tucked in every nook and cranny. Love. :o)

    ...I too also love your old rental home. We live in an early log home here in Missouri which we are getting ready to sell soon. There is nothing like the presence of an early home, nothing.

    ...While I was adoring the first photos, my personal fav' was the one you took of Christmas morn'. Priceless!

    ...Hoping your Christmas was merry and wishing you a very Happy New Year!

    ...Peace & blessings. :o)

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  19. What a beautiful Christmas! From afar, the candlelight looks so cozy, but I know you were thrilled to have power restored. I would love to know where you purchased your window candles. Placing ours is a favorite tradition of mine every holiday season, but I have stuck to the electric powered ones because I have yet to find a battery powered version that I like. It looks like yours are battery powered and would love to know if you're happy with them and if so, where you purchased them! Happy New Year!

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  20. Hi Catherine,
    So pretty, I love the light of the faux candle and how the tree lights illuminate the room. so beautiful. I too love the candels and have them everywhere. i don't have to worry about open flame.
    Your home is reflecting your loving family.
    Happy New Year my dear friend.
    xoxo
    Lisa

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  21. Merry Christmas Trina! Your new home looks so cozy and beautiful. And that view...I am so picky when it comes to views, and yours is amazing!!!
    I miss our emails...I will get in touch once I have a little more time.
    xoxoxo Dawn

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  22. I love the containers that are holding the paperwhites. What are they?

    You have fabulous style. I cannot tell you how often I refer back to pictures of the kitchen in your former home for inspiration as we set out on our own kitchen remodel.

    Happy New Year to you and your family.

    Rachel

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  23. Lovely home, loving it. Greetings and Happy new year from Finland!

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  24. What a beautiful way to make lemonade out of lemons, and your home looks glorious in the candlelight. Still loving your sofa and love it even more with the details of a fun Christmas morning surrounding it!! Happy New Year to you all!!

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  25. So sorry you lost power but survived. ;) I wasn't aware you lived in the east. I thought you still lived in the northwest. I must have missed a post or two. :P I should have known by the home you are living in now. ;) Love your simple Christmas! The view of the church out your window is storybook. :)

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  26. I'm so happy to have come across your beautiful blog.

    And look forward to returning.

    Ahhhh, you too... Needing to eat gluten free. A challenge. But quality of life, is so much better, when we know our issues.

    Happy New Year...

    Tessa~
    "Here there be musing" blog

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  27. No photos of your cute husband. :(

    But, everything is SO beautiful. I love the contrast between the pristine living room and the Christmas morning one. Those are both real sides of you, the elegant and the homey. Thank you so much for sharing! Happy New Year!

    Em

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  28. I can just imagine the rejoicing when the power came on! I have a set of battery operated candles that are in lanterns. I think they are wonderful, too. I use them on our front porch in the winter months. I think they look quite natural, and are much safer where I am using them than a real flame. I made a batch of your muffins. They are so good! I actually ate 2 while they were still warm. Thankfully, there are still 10 for my family. Happy New Year to you all!

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  29. I love flame free candles. I have several thru out my house. We have oil lamps for when our power goes out.After living in Alaska where we had power failure all the time. We found they really come in handy.

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  30. Storywood Designs, The window candles came from Michaels. They were 40% off and have worked just fine. You turn the bulb clockwise to turn on and opposite to turn off. Very simple design.
    Best, Catherine

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  31. Love your winter Christmas charm in photos . . . The white steepled church viewed through the trees is so wonderful! Happy New Year Catherine, for each of you . . .

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  32. Happy Holidays and how beautiful everything is !
    Even the pancakes :)
    Wishing you a wonderful New Year !

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  33. gosh i love the spareness of the decor in your place trina. will you keep it like this or do you miss your paintings?

    that soup sounds so good.

    happy new year.
    x

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  34. I think this is my first visit here and I am so glad I stopped by! Everything looks so warm and inviting :) Happy New Year!

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  35. Oh dear Catherine! What a gorgeous pictures! Your home looks fabulous!!
    I wish you and your family a Happy, Healthy and Prosperous New Year!
    xx
    Greet

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  36. Hi Catherine, I love your blog and your beautiful home. Thanks for allowing us to share your holiday.
    Anne

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  37. as always your home looks beautiful. thanks for sharing more photos of the table. it is beautiful. i look so forward to each little peek of your home that you share

    if i may comment in regards to the window candles. early in december i found mine at target, added plus they have a timer setting. just like the timer battery candles. i think i paid $9.99.

    happy new year.

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  38. Dear Janet,
    I am still working on hanging art. The walls are plaster so I have to hem and haw a bit longer than usual.
    xoxoCatherine

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  39. Send Mike to our house. what a great cook!!

    I love your house, and I think your re-up sofa is gorgeous. Happy New Year to you and family.

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  40. I have been a fan of your style for so long and read every post with great anticipation! The simplicity with which you have decorated your home is an inspiration...so peaceful! Thank you for sharing,
    Happy New Year.

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  41. Your home is full of spirit. Beautiful post.

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  42. Thank heavens you ended up with a warm, cozy Christmas in the end...and a lovely one too.
    That view is so pretty!
    Blessings in the New Year to you and your sweet family...
    xoxo J~

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  43. Looks like you had a beautiful and cozy Christmas, Catherine! Glad you liked the sweet potato muffins. :) I'll have to give those pancakes a try myself, as I'm a big fan of buckwheat.

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  44. Happy New Year to you and your family, Catherine! Sounds like you had a wonderful holiday. Thank goodness your power came on!

    I bought a flameless candle today made by Luminara. It has a very realistic looking flame and it's made of real wax. It even has a timer so it will stay on for 5 hours, turn off and then turn back on at the same time the next day. How cool!

    P.S: I scrolled down to leave this comment and there is a very suggestive ad playing for something called League of Angels with a "Play Free!" message. I have no idea what it is, but I wanted to mention it because I don't think it's something you would be happy to have advertised on your site.

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  45. I only want to encourage in my comments but also wanted to mention the ad--it seems pretty out of kilter with your beautiful aesthetic. Very best wishes in the new year! Thanks for the beautiful photos.

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  46. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  47. So sorry about the ad! It is handled by Google and out of my control (I think). I will certainly look into it and hopefully resolve it asap. Thanks for letting me know. Best, Catherine

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  48. What a lovely Christmas. I hope it was very Merry for you and yours. Thank-you for sharing.

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  49. Oh what a sweet memory- we had chime candles in our children's rooms when they were small. I had not thought of those in years :)
    Happy New Year .. besos, C

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  50. Thank you for the earthquake putty idea. How clever.
    Kathleen

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  51. simply.
    elegant.

    thank you for sharing your recipes. we, too, have allergies and my husband adores buckwheat pancakes.

    happy new year, Catherine.

    becky

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  52. Miss seeing pictures of the twins. Enjoy your new home - so your style.

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  53. Happy New Year to you all. Thanks for sharing your Christmas decor, lights and all the trimmings.
    pve

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  54. I love reading your blog. I miss seeing your former house but love to read about your new one as well. Can you tell me where you got your living room rug and is it rough on the feet?

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  55. The seagrass rug came from Pottery Barn several years ago. It's been great. It's not rough on the feet, just not too comfortable to sit on. A rug pad helps a lot. Best, Catherine

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  56. Lovely pictures, Catherine! My mom's family is Swedish, and I grew up with the angel chime every Christmas at my grandparents' farm house. I love it!

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  57. I love looking at the pictures as your house progresses. And, the view from your windows is spectacular! I used to live in the mountains of North Carolina and it truly is a wonderful way of life. Thanks for sharing with everone.

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  58. Thanks so much for sharing these photos; I always love the view from your windows. The carrots were gorgeous!

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  59. Your house looked amazing for the Holidays, makes me miss the season now we are in January! Looking forward to your next updates about the house!

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  60. Beautiful! I love the battery candles too. I use them all winter in my colonial style home as they add so much warmth! Happy 2014!

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  61. Oh, I will have to try that soup! Lovely photos---and there is nothing much as uncomfortable as COLD!!

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  62. Everything looks so lovely! Especially your soup. I just got very hungry...LOL Kit

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  63. Thank you for following me Cathrine,
    I am so glad I came over to visit, I love your style and your bank of windows dressed in moss green shutters charm the rooms design style.

    Looking forward to your new posting, I am going to go back and catch up on what I am missing out on with your grace and beauty.

    Beautiful week ahead of you that inspires.

    Bisous
    Xx

    Doré

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