Saturday, December 16, 2017

Miscellaneous Musings No. 11 - Holiday Edition

Welcome back to another miscellaneous musings. This one, no. 11, is my 2017 holiday edition. Let's get started with the recent collection of life's little observations. If you're so inclined, you can click here for a listing of my other accounts on the subject of thinking out loud.

Woohoo! This just in.....The South Charleston Antique Mall, South Charleston WV, was voted WV Living Magazine's 2017: Shopping category best antique/vintage store in all of West Virginia! Panoply has been proudly located in the South Charleston Antique Mall at 617 D Street, South Charleston, WV since 2008.  Our location is an easy on/off from I-64 at Exit 56. Come see us on your next trip through West Virginia - it's over 18,000 square feet of vintage and antique goodness!
Our Sam's Club was selling the doormat / rug below as part of their holiday decor (there were several other designs too). The one thing they all had in common? GLITTER! That, my friends, is real glitter on that doormat. You've read my loathing of all things glitter before (if not, you can read here). For the glitter phobe in me, this would be pure torture to see ANYone wipe their feet on this and then walk in ANYWHERE.
Glitter Rug!
The photo below was also posted on my Facebook account in early November, which is part of our getting holiday ready. We rake our leaves into piles along the street curb property, and our city comes along and vacuums them one day a week throughout November, early December. It's a municipal service along our 100 year old, tree-lined city streets. Does your city have this service, I'm curious?
Raking, Vacuuming Leaves
My niece in Texas just thought that was the strangest thing, about as strange as I thought the photo below was when she posted on December 7th in Austin - snow!
Snow in Texas!
Daughter #1 posted this highway sign as she and my son-in-law traveled to FL for Thanksgiving. She knows how I like quirky signs.
Turkeys in TN!
Meanwhile, daughter #2 had me panicking for her sake on the day before Thanksgiving. I thought her fireman/cook/husband assigned her one job - to thaw the turkey - and she screwed it up. Read the text messages from that morning, starting at 6:35 am (her texts are red, mine are blue).
The messaging continued.....
She got me good. 🤣

Getting ready for the holidays means, among other tasks, having my drink fridge at the top of the stairs ready to stockpile extra [cooked] dishes, drinks (besides my daily Diet Coke), and ice for company.
Hallway fridge
Well, we were noticing a screeching sound coming from it in late fall that would repeat every so often - too often. The back side of the fridge is housed in one of the extra closets of the renovated master bath (see below). I took steps to clean all the grills, front and back, thinking the renovation took its toll with dust & dirt clogging it, but that didn't help. We had disconnected the copper tubing that ran water into the icemaker during the reno (which had quit operating long before the reno). I had accidentally flipped the switch to "on" for it to make ice. The screech was the fridge trying to fill the icemaker with water that was disconnected. Turns out, the fridge was basically having dry heaves.
Backside of hallway fridge
Speaking of the bathroom, I am in L💓VE with my radiant heated floor. Whenever my feet are cold, or when I get up in the middle of the night, it's heavenly to walk on. I could sleep there.
Heated floor!
In order to sleep on the floor, though, I have to keep it clean from hair and shedding skin cells, literally daily, by both vacuuming and dry Swiffer dusting it (you can see both the Swiffer stick and the Dirt Devil in the photo of the closet earlier). I practice safe vacuuming though, lol. That Dirt Devil is so loud, I think I've already damaged a few nerve cells in my ears using it, but now I wear my husband's silencers.
Safe vacuuming
Yep, that's me, sportin' my winter tartans. Speaking of which, did you see my tablescape this month? I shared some tartanware I scored on eBay. Below is my holiday edition/addition of tartanware, McTarget clan tartan. I found those in the dollar bins at the front of the store, knowing I can always use another tartan somethin' somethin'.
McTarget clan tartan
The groceries below may or may not be my part of my holiday hoarding stockpile. For your information, I 💖Oreo white fudge cookies like I do Girl Scout thin mints, and can never get enough. They're limited, so I go for broke when I spot them. Notice the fiber therapy and ibuprofen. That'll keep us in good stead for the holidays, too.
Holiday stockpile
When we went to Amish country last month, I picked up some treats there, too. They make the best comfort food, including their breads, fudge, cookies and especially their cinnamon rolls.
Amish Stockpile
The cinnamon rolls are close to what my mother used to make every year for so many holidays, from Easter to Christmas. They were heavy, set up like concrete in your belly, but oh, so good! By her mid-80's, let's just say my mother had lost all filters when she wanted to tell it like it is, whatever the subject. Her cinnamon rolls are affectionately now known as Grandma's F'n Rolls (her words, when she last made them, "Merry Christmas. Here's your f#*!n rolls").

After 10 years since her death, my daughter #1 has been trying to replicate my mother's (her Grandma's) cinnamon roll recipe, aka those F'n Rolls. Last year, she documented the process in 3 separate and very brief (30 sec) instagram videos (no spoken profanity, mostly family-rated, I promise). I saved the videos to share with you, and I hope you'll watch these, in order. My daughter nailed not only the process, but also the recipe, which was the best ever last year. Enjoy!
Day 1 of those F'n Rolls
Day 2 of those F'n Rolls
Toward the end of those F'n Rolls
Speaking of my mother, whatever it is about the holidays, I don't know, but thoughts of her are many. It's been 10 years, as I said, since she passed. The first Saturday of December, we drove into our garage and a cardinal flew into the branches of our maple on the edge of our property. I've written before about this symbolism, here.
Visit from a cardinal
Each year, and on that same evening of the cardinal visit this year, the cemetery where my mom is buried has a candlelight ceremony, wherein each and every grave is lit with a real candle luminary in a paper bag with sand. It's done completely by volunteers and it's breathtaking. This year the moon was in its super moon phase, and it was my first time seeing it live. Below is just a very small portion of the cemetery, with rolling hillsides all aglow.
Annual cemetery candlelighting ceremony
I like to think she sent her signal to 'visit' me, knowing I was going to visit her grave that evening. I choose to believe.

Have yourself a Merry Little Christmas!
Rita C. at Panoply