Thank you for finding That Old House amidst the chaos of the Internet. We are delighted that you are here.

Monday, December 12, 2016

O (Kinda Large) Tannenbaum

If there is one very good reason for owning a long mini-van, it is this:  
You can fold down the seats, and 
slide your fresh Christmas tree right in; 
  no roof-tying insanity.  
Me, wandering through a
tree farm, looking adorable.
Nowadays, we buy a fresh tree from a garden center around the corner from That Old House.  No more venturing into the vast Jersey wilderness to hack down our own specimen, followed by a hair-raising trip home on Route 80, with me convinced we'd cause a multi-car pileup when our tree went flying off the roof.  The year the tree farm guy tied a giant tree on with dental floss was the last straw.  

Our tree, hogtied in the back of the
minivan, Sunday afternoon.
No, now... we don heavy gloves (why is it always so cold on a tree lot?) and hunt the local lot.  Here's this year's victim lucky candidate, fresh out of the van and wrestled into the stand.
Late Sunday afternoon,
blue light time.
Which means ... all of our trees are UP, faux and fresh.  Some are partly finished, others awaiting their balls and bling.  The house is a tip, with still-to-be-deployed decorations and wreaths and garlands and ribbons running amuck, everywhere, but ... there's time.  And as always, what gets done, gets done ... and what doesn't, doesn't.
Fuzzy phone picture, Sunday evening.
Howard decides to do the lights another time.
I would attempt to put the lights on the sunroom tree, but I don't want to get scratched shoving strands of lights into the tree's innards; I hate pain.
Howard is a boy, so he gets to do the hard ouchy stuff.  :-)
Happy Monday morning, Tree!
(The picture is crooked, not the tree.  That's my story.)

My Dad believed that the more painful, scratchy, and fierce a tree's needles, the better it would last for the whole season.
Howard has adopted this belief, and has the scars to prove it.

Today, the tree looks happy, relaxed,
and ready for its bling.  
Last year's sunroom tree.

How do you choose a tree?
Do you cut one down, or find it on a lot?
Or take it out of a box?

Just a dozen days till Christmas Eve!
And remember:
Ho Ho Ho!  -- Cass

Visit The Graphics Fairy for a mind-boggling collection of vintage art.  Thank you, Karen!

Friday, December 9, 2016

Thanksgiving, and the Roses That Won't Die

I am a dunce.
Once again, I forgot to take pictures on Thanksgiving Day.  Why do I do this?

I got one nice picture of a guest, relaxing, 
getting ready for the tanning bed:
"So... what SPF is butter, anyway?"
Remember my annual TBDBT List?  ("To Be Done Before Thanksgiving" List.)  This year, I took little Post-It notes, and stuck the "To Do" items on the freezer door, and when that item was actually "To Done," its note got moved to the refrigerator door, on the right. 
Day before Thanksgiving, with most of
the TBDBT notes on the "Done!" side. 😉

Howard, bless him, got competitive about moving those little bits of paper.  He wanted to move more of them.  
Ssshh... don't tell him I may have Tom Sawyer'd him into whitewashing a fence.

And now it's December.  And it's cold.  And we've already had three light snowfalls.  

I have decided this means an easy winter ahead; we'll get all the snow done with early.  
Don't argue with me.  Believe.

Our Knockout Roses are holding on to the bitter, bitter, bitterly cold end of the season.  
 I took these shots today.  December 9th.

These roses have been iced, snowed, and out in 25-degree weather overnight.  I think we need to start building cars out of whatever these roses are made of.

One of my geraniums was almost as tough.
Just a few days snow.  Still hanging on.
But today, after last night's bitter lows,
it folded its hand.  
I had considered wintering it over in the house, 
or bare root in the cellar.  I'm sorry I didn't.
And now I remember why I took a break from blogging.  It's hard!  I'm out of practice, slow, and dull.  But I will leave you for today, with pictures of our pups, Dylan and Gilda.  He's now 7, and she is 13, and still a flirty redhead.

"What?  What?  Why are you hollering?"
"What do you mean, what did I just eat?"

 And another Thanksgiving picture, of my gluten-free, sugar-free pumpkin cheesecake.  It was delicious, even cracked.
Cracked?  It fit right into the family.

Now I need to go feed the dogs.
I'm being stared at.
Duty calls.  -- Cass

Thursday, November 17, 2016

The Return of the Blogger

Blame it on physics.  
You know ... that inertia thing.  "Objects in motion," etc.
Well, I've been an object NOT in motion ... 
an object at rest, at least when it came to blogging.

And inertia kept me there.  Like a blogging shut-in.  
Hiding, snuggled in amongst the comfy cushions.

Yes, like that.

But then, checking my email this morning, there, right there at the top of my computer monitor, was a little link:  
"That Old House," it read ... and it called my name.
And for the first time since April 2015, 
I decided to answer that siren call.   

Let me just go get some hot coffee.... 
I promise the inertia won't trap me in the kitchen. 

I'm back.  And I'm entering into the spirit of the season.
Thanksgiving Day is one week from today.
One week, people. One week!

So, yes, it is time to reveal the time-honored
To-Be-Done-By-Thanksgiving List.
This year's version of the T.B.D.B.T. List is modest.
No high-flying, high-falutin' goals.
Simple.  After all, 'tis a gift, eh?

Here it is:
1)  Buy food.
2)  Cook same.
3)  Not poison anyone.
4)  Be grateful for all of above.

There ya go.  What's on your TBDBT List this year?
Oops!  I forgot #5... Find Howard's turkey shirt!
It just isn't Thanksgiving without the Cracker Barrel Turkey Shirt.

That's all, Folks.  How are y'all?
I hope you are well, happy, healthy, and being good.
Tomorrow, a furniture dilemma to share.
With me, it's almost always about the furniture.
Or, the china.  Or, the vintage linens.  Or....
All the best ... Cass

Thanks to Karen, The Graphics Fairy, for the vintage images.
Her website is a treasure trove!