Monday, December 16, 2013

With a little time on my hands . . .

We didn't realize how much time our puppy takes until this morning when she was not at home.

Lulu spent all day at the vet and with no interruptions I was able to water the garden, do 3 loads of laundry, vacuum the entire house and completely scour the kitchen from top to bottom - all by 11:00.

With all the work done early, I set out to create our "Christmas" table for the day.

I was disappointed when H & M contacted me to say that the Christmas tablecloth I had ordered was sold out so I decided to make my own tablecloth from a drop cloth.

BUT, after spending a full day pulling threads to create the fringe and then 2 more days to tie the fringe, I was not going to create something only to be used at Christmas.

 I brought down red plates from the top of the cupboard and asked myself why I had hidden them away.

I bought the square and the round sets over the course of a year at many TJ Maxx stores throughout southern California until I had full place settings.

Mondays are always soup and/or salad so I went with the large square plates to hold the salad

and the round bowls for soup - as much as I love the square bowls, they aren't great for soup.

A Christmas table is easy for me with my primary color palette - there are always red napkins on hand.

A sprig of greenery from the garden tied with ribbon breaks up the predominance of red on the table.

I love the alphabet and buy letter sets on sale whenever I see them - I didn't have two S's for Christmas so I went with J O Y.

The bowl (an after Christmas purchase many years ago) is a favorite because it brings in a little yellow.

Red wine glasses and red candles finish off the table.

From any direction, the dining room looks festive with its Christmas trimmings.

But, the Advent Calendar on the mantel is looking less festive as treats are removed daily.

I worked too hard on the calendar to just put the pieces away so I am attaching them to a little basket guarded by my vintage Santa Claus.

Christmas is coming fast and I am almost ready.

How about you?

. . . . . . . . .

All Things Heart and Home - Twirl & Take a Bow!

Stone Gable - The Scoop

Mod Vintage Life - Mod Mix Monday

Cozy Little House - Tweak It Tuesday

The Dedicated House - Make It Pretty Monday

Dwellings - Amaze Me Monday

Kathe With an E - You're Gonna Love It

Coastal Charm - Christmas Home Tour Party


  1. i love the greenery .. adds such a pop of color. at 1st i thought it was rosemary ... but then went back & took another look. ( :

  2. Love your festive table setting, and soup and salad sound perfect!!
    Mary Alice

  3. I love your Christmas decor! The red plates and bowls are fabulously festive. Joy is one of my favourite words so I use it often. I'm not ready for Christmas at all, but it always sneaks up on me so this year is no different. lol. Love this time of year... even though it's freezing cold here and we have way too much snow.

  4. I love the tablecloth you made! I also love the red dishes. So pretty!!!

  5. I finally found you! Love your table and love your home but really love your "can do" attitude ("can't find a problem...I'll just make my own!"). I'll enjoy following your blog!
    Happy Holidays!
    Cheryl from 22applegatelane

  6. Hope Miss Lulu is ok.
    I am coveting the yellow bowl in the center of your table.
    Everything looks fresh and inviting.
    Linda C in Seattle

  7. Such a cheery Christmas table! And oh, how I love your chairs in their bright colors! It is as happy as a brand new box of Crayolas!

  8. What a sweet vintage Santa! You're having lots of fun being at home this Christmas! I love seeing all of your pretty decor! Sweet hugs!

  9. Looks great. I bought a santa like that from a vintage store. I don't think it's old, I can't decide, but it was $5.'s cute. Love how you did the advent calendar. So cute. Happy Holidays.

  10. Fabulous decorating - as always! Love those dishes!!!!!!!!!!!!

  11. I love the beautiful things you find at tj maxx and your determination to find all of the coordinating pieces! I dislike when I order something only to find out it is sold out ~ bummer about your tablecloth! This month, I bought a few goodies that were spendy enough that I needed to be able to use it year round so I totally understand that you would want to create something that you can always use. This was another very cute table setting!

  12. Very pretty, very festive and very YOU! I'm loving it all, especially the vintage Santa and basket!


  13. Carol, Surprise, I love, love, love your table cloth and the yellow bowl in the center. The table setting is so pretty... as always you bring color into our lives... thank you, Cathy

  14. looks lovely together. The red dishes are fantastic

  15. I always look forward to seeing your posts in my email. Your photography is stunning, and your home is so cheerful, especially now that you're all decked out for Christmas. That picture of your puppy is GREAT!

  16. Carol, I love the red dishes and they look so pretty on the table. That picture of Lulu is so cute. She's alright isn't she? you sure got a lot of work done. I like the drop cloth table cloth, you really did a terrific job on it. You can use that all year long.
    Wishing you, Steve and KC a wonderful Merry Christmas. And of course Lulu too.

  17. Your house looks so bright and cheery. I love the quality of your photos. Beautiful job!!!

  18. I love seeing your holiday tablescapes - so festive and inviting!

  19. A lovely little bit of holiday serendipity - I clicked on your post, with it's song title in the header collage just as Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas came on the player.
    Your table is very pretty - I am such a lover of the primary colour scheme. It looks like you are all ready!

  20. YOU are so, so good.

    First of all, Lulu is hilarious. Look at that face? Hmmmm.....she has her OWN Christmas decorating plans!

    Secondly, that you scoured the floor and kitchen AND then proceeded to make the fringe on the tablecloth and to get everything set to look as such, is a miracle that I could only hope I could ever achieve in my housekeeping!

    I just bet your teaching days and classroom were organized to the "TEE" Carol! Your holiday cottage is perfect, and you have worked so hard to get just the right feel. MUCH LOVE! Anita

  21. Your table looks terrific, I bet fringing that drop cloth too forever. I always loving seeing your homes decor, and it is just perfect for Christmas.

  22. Your table looks so festive and pretty! I LOVE those red dishes! And Lulu looks adorable :)

  23. Well you certainly have a nice decorating touch. Love those red dishes. They make the table look so pretty. Glad you came by for a visit. Hope you'll come again real soon. Merry Christmas to you and your family! May you be blessed!

  24. I love it! Your colors are always fabulous and I love how you use your letter collections ~ your table is delicious looking even before you add the food! Merry Christmas!

  25. Beautiful pictures!! I love them!


  26. You did it again...another beautiful and festive table setting. Soup sounds so good on these cold nights, I need to make a batch just as soon as Christmas is over. I think I'm just about ready, but have to finish some cleaning and gift wrapping.

  27. I think you lucked out with the drop cloth tablecloth, endless possibilities! Love the red dishes and the yellow bowl, the letters. Glad you're still hanging on to the Advent pieces in the bowl.

    Hugs ~ Mary

  28. This is such a pretty table and a great one for everyday holiday! Love that you are making your own tablecloth! I am still loving your Advent banner and yes, keep them out they are too cute to put away yet!

  29. Love your noel in the header. This is such a nice table setting --there is maybe too much to comment on. I also like your package wrapping previous post. Each gift is it's own work of art. You are really enjoying these days!

  30. Wow, that was a lot of work fringing your tablecloth,
    but it does look great.
    Your tablescape is so cheerful and bright. But I don't
    think one can ever go wrong with Red!

  31. So pretty , you have such a great eye for detail.
    Sarah x

  32. Carol,

    It's definitely bonus time for me at this time of year on your blog! I am so spoiled by all the red, in check and solids and candles and...! Yay! It is amazing what one can achieve when they are not interrupted (or distracted by blogs like yours)! I love when my house has just been cleaned!


  33. I LOVE that puppy face! And your tablecloth and table settings are gorgeous! And YES, I am jealous of your 72 degree weather as I watch the snow swirling outside! I will live vicariously through your blog this winter :)

    Donna @ An Enchanted (Snowy!) Cottage

  34. Not ready at all, for the same reason you are: vet trips! I hope Lulu wasn't sick.

  35. It is sure looking like Christmas at your house, Carol. I LOVE the pup's face and that bowl is GORGEOUS! I just love the cut out holly leaves on it. I can only wish for that beautiful weather you have there- xo Diana

  36. I hope you puppy is OK. I like the look of your Christmas table and the rest of you home.

  37. Get better, Sweet Lulu! Such a pretty table...

  38. Lulu is adorable! I hope Lulu is feeling better.
    Your tablescape is so pretty. I love the red dishes. I love how you made the tablecloth.

  39. Carol,
    By the time I get to my email and can make a comment on your blog, everyone has already said what I wanted to say. Oh well, here goes. I love Lulu, what a sweet dog. I love all your colors and the "to-die-for art on your walls. I love the colored utensils and all the letters of the alphabet--yes!! You always make me say, "yes" when you come with something on the spur of the moment, like your table cloth. I just love your blog. Thank you. Have a blessed Christmas and a prosperous, blessed new year.

  40. Very pretty and festive table, Carol! I love those dishes. I am always afraid to start a collection from TJ Maxx or Home Goods, because I fear they will stop carrying them before I get what I need. It looks like you got a wonderful selection of both the round and square plates.

  41. Your dining room is so sweet I love the red dinnerware, and the tablecloth you made.

  42. I like the drop cloth tablecloth you made too. I just gush over red dishes and yours are divine with those little green sprigs added. Like Cinnamon above,,,I just love the yellow bowl and red and yellow together drive me to heaven. I am not almost ready yet, but did some shopping again today and am getting there. Oh, and I sometimes come to a screeching halt when I see a square plate.

  43. I'm nearly ready, but it's now the 23rd so I haven't got much time left. Your table looks so pretty and I've done the same with a little bit of greenery and a ribbon !

  44. I love those red place settings. I'm trying to convince my husband we need some I found at Pier !. We'll see if I succeed. LOL
    I like that little yellow bowl too with the greenery.