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Fluttery Orange Parrot Tulips For The Win

The entry hall could not have been happier. The first of the season orange parrot tulips just shouting at me from the buckets at the Alm Hill Gardens stall at the Market last Saturday morning. Pick me, pick me! But, of course, they knew I would. Happy Flower Friday all. Hope your weekend is grand.



 

 

Honoring The Meal

Setting the table and taking time to savor the meal, honors the ritual. If even take-out is on the menu–in this case it was pizza being delivered. The white tulips a gift from John at WK in honor of my mom, which was so kind, they became the start of the theme. A vintage Wedgwood vessel would hold them setting the creamy white tone for the rest of the table. Votive candles were lit and we were off and running.



 

 

Ted’s Tip No. 184

Vintage platters are a swell thing to collect. Utilitarian as all get out, they can be used in a host of ways. They stack neatly as not to take up lots of room, plus they are pleasing to the eye.



 

 

Blooming Hyacinth Bulbs

Flower Friday brings us a forced hyacinth bulb that sent us off with a flourish the other day from Hawthorne as we headed to Seattle. Access to flowers in the country is not the easiest, so I get creative as all get out at the grocery store. At this stage in the game, I really relish the challenge of keeping the house in blooms while we are there. Flowers are like food to me. They feed my soul, being constant inspiration while bringing tons of joy. I was over the moon when I spotted these clear bulb vases already filled with a bulb. To me seeing the roots can be equally beautiful to the blooms. So in this case, the clear container could not have been more perfect. First we had them on the dining table, then I dotted the blooms around the house. Bits of the Spring ahead on those chilly, chilly Hudson Valley days. Have a lovely January weekend everyone!



 

 

Floating Candles

Funny how you forget about things and then they pop back into your thought process after many years. Such is the case with floating candles. Ages ago we used to float candles in our bathtub when we had a party to add a bit of fun glow in the bathroom. Fast forward to now. The guest bathroom at Hawthorne was in need of a little sparkle when we hosted gatherings, so floating candles came to the rescue. They let off the prettiest light floating about the water. Just an unexpected little visual treat for visitors.



 

 

Paperwhites, Hyacinth Bulbs, Hydrangea and Carnations

Flower Friday is our flower laden supper table last night. We made our way back to Hawthorne and are determined to find joy in all the little things. While still in a haze, you all know how happy it makes me to set a fun table. While thoughts and stories about my mom are ever present, we are determined to savor the last of our Twelve Days of Christmas celebrations. So the house was filled with the scent of garlic and saffron last night. Geranium leaf placemats from the shop have been a fun addition. Then it was about layering all sorts of grocery store flower finds along with pots of paperwhites caretaker Bill picked up for us before we arrived on Christmas Day. The blooms starting to open, releasing their heavenly scent. Then lighting some taper candles and the table was set.



 

 

Carnation Love

Flower Friday brings us a big bundled bunch of gloriously green carnations. We did a big grocery shop yesterday and there they were in all their ruffly glory at the Price Chopper in Chatham. So good I just could not pass them up. I have mentioned before finding flowers in the country can be a challenge, so grocery flower departments often come to the rescue. Options can be slim, but I always look for one type of bloom that looks healthy and pick out a profusion of them. Have a lovely last week-end of the year everyone!



 

 

A Boxing Day Table For 14

Our new tradition of flying to Hawthorne on Christmas Day also includes hosting a Boxing Day supper the next day. This year it was a family affair with folks coming from Montclair, Albany and Troy. Simple potted paperwhites would be the centerpiece of the table. When we bought the metal topped dining table when we first got the house, we actually bought 2. The legs fold so we keep the spare in the basement. It is quite nifty because it saddles up ever so nicely as a pair, giving us lots of extra seating to accommodate more guests. We used 2 fern laden matching tablecloths so the tables became a cohesive whole. Then it was a smattering of glassybaby vessels along with the pair of jaunty green Dunes & Duchess candelabras and we were off and running. Citrus with thyme salmon, cauliflower and broccoli purée, along with Parmesan smashed Yukon gold potatoes was the meal. Tons of chatting, lots of laughs, deep discussions and a good deal of wine. A pretty swell evening to kick-off our stay.



 

 

A Hudson Valley Arrival

We traveled through Christmas Day, arriving to Hawthorne a bit after 8 last night. The temperature dropping as we meandered North up to Columbia County, hitting 32 as we drove up the long driveway. Caretaker Bill had once again beautifully prepared the house for us, getting the perfect tree and having it lit so we could see it the moment we drove in. Then our Twelve Days of Christmas began! We are hosting a Boxing Day supper for family today, a new tradition. So it is up and at em’ early getting things ready. Then tons of R&R is on the menu for this stay. The retail marathon a big success (huge THANKS to all who shopped WK this season) but each passing year my 55 year old body takes a tad longer to re-coup. I hope your Holidays have been and continue to be divine and all you wished they would be.

From the Hawthorne Valley, sending much love, Ted2+Bailey



 

 

Ted’s Tip No. 181

The zen of wrapping. During these days of gift giving, find calm and satisfaction while wrapping up the presents you are giving. Think of the work that went into finding the gift, think of the happiness the recipient will feel when opening it. Find joy out of the process of choosing the paper and ribbon.