Monday, December 29, 2008

Today is the day.

To those of you who have written to me this morning, thanks for your support. When we close out the year of 2008, we leave behind all that was and we greet the New Year of 2009 with all that could be. I am anxious and happy for all the opportunities that are awaiting this upcoming year. I have always heard that "Life is what you make it". If that is the case I am choosing to live my life joyously! Focusing on those things that are of the real value to me. If life is really what we make, I believe that this can be another incredible year. Let's enjoy the road ahead together, creating a life of joy, prosperity and good health, one day at a time. PS, I painted the above picture.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Listen In!

Well this is exciting for me. I have been invited to be on a radio talk show Monday morning. Mark Marine has invited me to be a guest on his show at 11:00 a.m. MST Monday morning. The program has featured a variety of guests, with Mark being the host. Mark hosts a program about financing, among other things. The radio station is AM630 K-TALK. I am flattered that Mark has invited me to talk about my blog as well as some of my upcoming events and the new E-book I am working on. I hope you will be able to join in on the conversation. I look forward to talking to you live. Leave me a comment and let me know what you think of the program.

Yes, we will be doing a Valentine's Day Party. I will get you the details as soon as I have them ready. Please make sure I have your email address so that I can let you know the dates. If your are interested in participating let me know that also. I can't wait the cupids are in the air and I have a lot of pink and red glitter I can't wait to use.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

It's a magical place!

Click on the photos for a closer view of the fuzzy little ice crystals.

It's almost like a magical place, everything sparkling with tiny little crystals of ice.

Utah is an interesting place for weather, the saying here goes that "if you don't like the weather, wait five minutes". The weather here can change so quickly, we don't really have prolonged rain, snow, sun or wind. Imagine how surprised I was when we headed to town and everything that caught my eye looked like fuzzy crystallized pipe cleaners! I think what I was experiencing was frozen fog. We live by a big lake and it was quite foggy when we turned in the night before. My husband said that we were going to have freezing fog, I thought he was making it up. Many of you may have seen sights like this before, but I have never seen long thread-like crystal of ice, standing at an angle, most likely in the direction of the evening wind. It was beautiful. The sun was peeking from behind the beautiful Wasatch Mountains and the sky was a glorious blue. I cannot tell you how fast the scenery began to change with the rising of the sun. Before we could turn around and go back to the house for my camera, many of the dainty little ice shafts had disappeared in the warmth of the morning sun. Take time to enjoy the little moments in your life as they pass so quickly.

Friday, December 26, 2008

A lotta-to-do about nothing!

"A lotta-to-do about nothing". This is a phrase that my mom used to use often when as teenage girls we would go on and on about a subject. When I sat down tonight to post on my blog and I am looking at all of the clean up around the house and in the trunk of my car. I found myself thinking that this was a "lotta-to-do".
Christmas was so wonderful, my family is fun and supportive and some of the talk was about what mom should do or could do with her blog this coming year. I am so filled up in my heart with how wonderful my new friends that read my blog are. There are a lot of very talented bloggers in the world and I am grateful that many of you have found me.
As I clean up my blog, I am already planning my next event. I know this is a little early, since we have not celebrated New Year's Day, but I am anxious to get going on Valentine's Day. If you have been shopping this last week you are already seeing the Valentine's decorations on the shelves of some of your favorite retailers. I am sure they are wanting to capture as much of your buying power as possible. I am looking for other bloggers or readers who would like to contribute to my next event. We had so much fun doing our Halloween Blog Party, that I want to do a fun event for all of us while we last out the cold winter. I am wanting to share fun ideas for Valentine's Day so put me on your "lotta-to-do" list. Leave me a comment and I will be in touch with you. For now try to hang on to that wonderful spirit you have been enjoying and we will visit soon. Deb

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Saturday, December 20, 2008

It's a busy time!

Well it is really getting busy around my house. We are having a party on Christmas Eve so I will be spending the next few days cleaning, cooking and sewing. I hope I get everything done before Santa gets here. Thank you all so much for your visits. We will be doing another event for Valentine's Day so I will post about that after Christmas. Whatever you do this season, do it safely and remember how the gifts of the heart,that you give to others is what really lasts after the ribbons and torn paper are thrown away. Keep love in the season it spreads throughout the world when you give it to someone. Merry Christmas, Debbie, Courtney and Leanne (the Cottage in the Country team)

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

A Gift From Insightful Nana

I am so blessed to have really creative friends. My dear friend Kathy Griffiths just posted free downloadable Christmas gift tags. Kathy and I worked together, along with a team of very talented artists. The last twenty years have been more fun because of spending my life with such wonderful women. Any way, Kathy has designed some great tags for us to use and she has made them available to those who would like to use them. Visit her blog to download the tags. Thanks Kathy!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Across the miles at Christmas

Though miles between may intervene and keep us far apart, thru all the year, it's somehow clear, we're "right next door" at heart. And time and space cannot erase the thoughts so warm and true that take their way on Christmas Day across the miles to you!
Merry Christmas.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Millions of Tiny Lights

One of the traditions we enjoy here in Utah is visiting the world famous Temple Square at Christmas time. We had a wonderful evening. The weather hadn't really cooled off to much and the music of course was wonderful. One of the favorite spots to visit at Temple Square is the reflective pools. They are so beautiful reflecting the tiny lights and the beautiful sculptures. If you are ever here during the holidays, you want to make sure to visit and take time to listen to the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. The whole experience is memorable and really adds to the spiritual side of season.


Well I didn't get any offers on my fruitcake recipe post...
Melissa from Holiday Queen did send me a note exclaiming her regrets, seems no one at her house likes fruit cake, so she wanted to let me know that she could not help me out with a recipe. So I will move on. I can hardly believe that Christmas is in a few days. I think about it all year and all of the things that I would love to do, to decorate or to celebrate this magical time. We are experiencing cold weather and after dealing with blizzard conditions, that came upon us very quickly last year, I haven't felt overly adventurous. I have been spending a lot of days sewing and many nights making jewelry. Still so much to do. I hope you all enjoying your holidays. I am posting a few of the art pieces that I painted for greeting cards, I hope you will enjoy them. Deb

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Christmas Traditions

Okay for those of you who follow my blog. I am looking for the ultimate fruitcake recipe. I married a fellow several years ago, who thinks fruitcake is something you take out to the field after Christmas to use for target practice to try out your new gun. We do not agree on this particular tradition. My mother always made a moist wonderful fruitcake filled with citrus fruits, raisins and assorted nuts. This year I am giving myself a holiday treat. Homemade fruitcake! So I am open to a good recipe if you have one. I am thinking about all of you. Thank you for stopping by. With the economy being what it is and still unemployed. I am using my skills as a designer to make many of my own gifts this year.I hope you are all enjoying the season, it is a marvelous time of year. Deb

Monday, December 8, 2008

The sights of Christmas

Christmas Decorations

Courtney Crabtree captured some of the ornaments on her sisters tree. Families everywhere are preparing to celebrate the Christmas season with beautiful decorations, wonderful food and delightful music. We are sharing some of family experience with you. Deb

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Which Theme This Year?

As you can probably see from my blog I have a wide range of tastes when it comes to Christmas. I don't have enough time or enough trees to decorate in all of my favorite themes. I am sure I will settle on something soon. I found this fun little grouping of snowmen recently on Ebay. Another inspiration photo. My girls are getting anxious to get the tree trimmed. I hope you are enjoying the spirit of Christmas. Thanks for stopping by. Deb

Christmas Decor Inspiration

I thought I would share with you one of my favorite Christmas images that have inspired me this year. Nicol Sayre has designed products for Midwest of Cannon Falls. Many of her items are available through retailers across the country. I have been a fan of hers for several years. To see more of her holiday line visit her website

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Thanksgiving Remembered

While cleaning through some old boxes that I had stored, I ran across this old die cut. It of course, brought back memories of when we really only decorated with a few chipboard die cuts and maybe a bouquet of fall leaves for Thanksgiving Day. Now I have out all kinds of pumpkins and fragranced candles in assorted glass containers for my decorations. While it looks festive, it does not stir me as emotionally as this picture of pilgrims hunting wild turkeys for dinner. As a society we have moved a long way from the days of either hunting for wild turkey or chasing the turkeys around the farmyard until we caught one that we thought was just right. My mother, grandmother and aunts would spend hours in the kitchen cleaning the turkey and plucking it's feathers. When they were through with all of that then they would make the bread dressing, stuff the turkey, the place it in the oven of the old coal stove and then the rest of the story is about the wonderful smell of herbs roasting with that old turkey. There was a lot of time and effort sacrifices that took place to fix Thanksgiving dinner for all of my relatives. Everything had to be just right from the fresh bread, the steamed pudding, the mincemeat and pumpkin pies. My favorite was my grandmothers homemade egg noodles. I always thought my grandma made her broth for her noodles from chickens but my mother tells me the broth was from duck, however the broth was always so rich and savory, it was always my favorite dish on the table. Every recipe used by those wonderful women were an heirloom. Most passed down for generations. I know every family has their own traditions that are as priceless to them as mine are to me.
All I do now is go to my local grocery store and pick my favorite brand of turkey from big mounds of frozen birds. Life has changed a great deal. There will be some of you who can relate to this post and then there will be those of you who haven't a clue what I am talking about. You are all my friends and I would love to have you all over for Thanksgiving dinner. While that is not possible, of course, please know that I certainly feel a great deal of gratitude for those of you who stop by, read my posts and then leave me comments on what I have written.
I do have lots of guests coming so I need to take a few days to cook and clean before they all arrive. I will take the next few days off. So I will see you all next Friday. Remember to keep an attitude of gratitude and then give thanks for all that you enjoy. Deb

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Fall Decorating at the Home of Lorie Lakey

I have said before that I am lucky to have such creative friends. It is always a pleasure to visit the home of Lorie Lakey, a wonderful friend. She is so gracious to let me take pictures of her lovely home.

Thanksgiving Dinner

Christmas Rush?

Is anyone else besides me feeling the Christmas crunch already. My husband was after me to go shop for Thanksgiving dinner and I have been putting him off because I am busy with Christmas. I am thinking that times move a lot faster now than they did years ago. Halloween merchandise was almost gone in Septemeber and Christmas merchandise is picked over and there have been several Christmas boutiques last weekend. I don't seem to have time for Thanksgiving! I know what you are thinking. Take time to be grateful. I want it all. I want my cake and I want to eat it too. Well I am ready to jump into Christmas decorating right now. I would love your comments on how you balance your holiday seasons.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


Oh my gosh, I am slipping. We celebrated Veteran's Day yesterday. I let my gratitude attitude slip a little. I did not give thanks for the wonderful gift that our veteran's have given me. And to make this story a little worse. I have two wonderful stepson's and a son-in-law who gave service during some of our more recent defense missions to keep out country safe. My son (stepson) Andy is still in the reserve service having served in both the marines and the national guard. Thank you my wonderful sons. Thank you to the veterans who have made so many sacrifices so that I can live a free life in a country that I love. I do not want the sun to go down on this day without giving thanks to my boys. Mom

Remember to be Thankful

Thanks for all the snow!

Attitude of Gratitude

For those of you who have sent me comments about my cold, please know how much I have enjoyed your thoughtful comments. My husband offered to do a blog for me and tell a story on one of our early church leaders who had a cold and was considering a "medicinal" drink for his cold. I declined his offer. Though he is a funny guy and the story is funny, this isn't that kind of blog! So anyway, I am sending you some of the reasons I have been staying under a warm quilt. My cold is about gone, so it is time to move on.
Since the current theme of my blog is GRATITUDE, this is my reason to be grateful. I live in the Rocky Mountains, but we are a desert region. Water is a precious resource to not only the great state of Utah, but the surrounding states and California. We heavily depend on mountain snow pack for our water source. When we have a dry winter, we have to ration water during the summer, but it seems we are being blessed with enough snowfall this year that at least one ski resort opened last weekend. It is their second earliest opening in forty-two years. Something to be grateful for. My daughter, photographer is another wonderful thing to be grateful for. Leave me a comment and let me know if the spirit of gratitude has touched you today. Deb

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Mackenzie-Childs Event

One of the nice things about being a blogger is that I get to share the good news. So much of the media is based on the drama of the day. While I am aware of the things going on around me, I chose to live my life in the spirit of gratitude. There is so much good in the world and there are so many talented heart felt people, this is where I want to put my efforts. I love to share ideas and lift peoples spirits. For many years, I have been an admirer of Mackenzie-Childs in New York, as a decorative painter myself, I would love to be able to attend their event. For those of you who can go, I would love to hear about your experience. Have a great visit. Live Life Joyously. Deb

Mackenzie-Childs Hand Painted Furniture

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Before I transition my blog into Christmas ideas I thought I would like to share some of the fun photos I have found online that make me think of fall and fall decorating. This photo is from Mackenzie-Childs in New York. Very cute. Very fun. Needs the right setting but I love it.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Harvest Time

Thank you to my readers for stopping by. I have spent the last few days with an early winter cold. I feel I am recuperating but it has sure slowed me up. The one benefit I have had is a little time to think and ponder. We have survived the national election, and noq we are united to continue this life journey with new political leadership. I want all of you to know how grateful I am for the opportunities that I enjoy with my freedom of speech.Blogging has given me the opportunity to touch other people lives and to have them touch my life. I say thank you so much and let's celebrate the holiday together. Stay on board and let's share ideas with one another continue to support one another. Would it be to early to say "Happy Holidays" Welcome friends!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Fall Gatherings

When my children were small we would ride up the mountain to look at the fall leaves. The kids were always so excited to get out and run around gathering up an arm full of colorful fall leaves. We would take bouquets to grandma, the elderly lady next door, a big bouquet for their classroom and whatever was leftover we made into a bouquet for the table at our house. It was a fall tradition and time that we spent together as a family. Today my seventeen year old daughter was so excited when she called me and told me she had been out getting fall leaves. When she got home there were no arm loads of colorful leaves, just a computer memory card of all of her hard work gathering leaves. I had to laugh a little, it is a sign of the times. So here tonight I am sharing with you my little daughter's gathering of fall leaves. I hope you will enjoy them as much as I have and you know they will last a lot longer and I can keep the memories and enjoy them any time of the year.

Election Day

The big day is here and now it is our turn. We have the chance to voice our opinion. Voting gives us the opportunity to make our voice heard. May the best candidate win!

Monday, November 3, 2008

I wish that I could find the right words to share my feelings with each of you today. I have posted some vintage postcards that perhaps say some of what I am feeling. Here in the United States of America we have the right to vote for our country's leadership. It is up to each of us to study it out in our minds then choose for ourselves how we want to live. I am asking each of you to have an attitude of gratitude for all of the bounty we each enjoy, also remembering what our forefathers created for us. I am sure that they had us in mind when they set up this government. It is our duty to continue to create a wonderful home for our children and grandchildren. Search your heart for what you think is right and then make your choice.

Sunday, November 2, 2008


What more can I say?

Saturday, November 1, 2008