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Sunday, December 29, 2013

So Much Going On This Christmas Time ..

Hello my dear friends,

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas this year ~ mine was for sure very busy and a little crazy too.

With so much going on in our house and garden (I will tell you more about it at a later date) just before Christmas, I had very little time to be creative to the point of not being able to have a proper creative thought develop really. I did have chores that needed doing around the house though so that is what I worked on. I decided to stain my new dining room furniture just a few days before Christmas and take the old stuff away, not even knowing if my new table would be ready to use ... silly thing to do but I was lucky ... everything dried in time.

Unfortunately my younger daughter Caylagh was sick with the flu almost the entire week before Christmas and of course I picked up a little dose of it too and was unwell for two days but the bad one was when my older daughter Ashleigh had food poisoning from a beverage she had bought on the morning of Christmas Eve. I was so glad she was staying with us because the poor thing was so sick and I spent Christmas Eve running around the house between taking care of her, wrapping the last presents and cooking Christmas dinner but luckily she recovered somewhat for Christmas Day which was quiet and very nice and now she is well again.

I don't know if I have ever told you about our Christmas tradition that we have.
We actually have our big Christmas dinner on Christmas Eve ~ we started this over 13 years ago whilst still being in the army because it worked the best for us this way and it meant that Christmas Day is free for opening presents and fun. Every Christmas Day the girls open all their presents in the morning but one ~ that is their treasure hunt gift. Every Christmas Day after in the evening when everything is quiet and calm we have a treasure hunt which is where the girls are given the first clue and then they have to solve clues to find the next one and so on until the find their final gift. It is so much fun to them and for us to watch and believe it or not but my girls are 13 and 23 and they still love it!
We were also very lucky this year to have a white Christmas with soft fluffy flakes gently falling from the sky on both Christmas Eve and Day. Many other families in Ontario unfortunately weren't so lucky. A large ice storm hit Ontario just before Christmas Eve which just passed us by and over one hundred thousand people spent their Christmas in the dark and without heat. It had started in our town too and at 6 am everything was covered in a thick layer of ice but then it got slightly warmer outside when the sun rose so it didn't last very long.

Everything looked so enchanting covered with ice but ...

... shortly later the ice melted into drops of water that ...

... were clinging onto everything ...

... it could and again looking so beautiful!

We also had a new visitor to our backyard which I only noticed because of our cat Iris making such a racket and cackling like mad and looking out of our dining room window. At first I didn't see what all the fuss was about but when I looked up ...

... I saw, what I think is a Kestrel, resting in our neighbours tree ...
such an amazing sight!

The next day the snow came back and gave every thing a fresh dusting just in time for Christmas.

And of course I could not share this post without a new picture of one of the little furry critters that visit us every day now.

As of lately we have about 6 squirrels in our tree all at once waiting for me to feed them.
Now that things have calmed down again I have started to work on a new nest design. Will it turn out or not? ... I will have to wait and see until I am done with it.
I think I told you about my two music boxes that I made before Christmas but didn't get
 a chance to share them with you yet. I finally managed to take some good photos and next week I will be sharing both of them with all you lovely bloggers here on Todolwen. I am also thinking of another few more new creations and I am hopping to be able to make them soon so do keep stopping by from time to time and see what I have been up too.
It is always so nice when you visit me here at Todolwen ... thank you for doing so every time because without you my blog wouldn't be and I am hoping many more of my old followers will find me soon again.
I hope you are well and life is treating you kind my dear friends.
Have a peaceful and creative day,
Karen  B.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

And To All Of You ..

Hello my dear friends,

today I would love to wish all of you from the bottom of my heart ...

... a very Merry Christmas.
May you have a wonderful time with friends and family.
Many hugs,
Karen B.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Oh The Weather Outside Is Frightful ..

Hello my dear friends,

just over three weeks ago my daughters and I wanted to head out for a day and visit IKEA which was about 1.5 hours away from where we live. The weather network warned us about snow squalls all day but we decided to still go and see how far we would get. We actually got all the way down there and back without to much hassle do to the snow except for two detours we had to take because of the 401 highway being closed in parts. So things were good until we were on our way home about 50 km's outside our town when the snow really hit. It was about 5.30 and dark already and it took us almost an hour to do the last stretch and it was scary I can tell you for sure. We arrived at home safe and sound and happy about it too.

This is what it looked like outside our house at about midnight ~ it's so light outside!
(Unfortunately my camera doesn't take too good pictures in the dark.)
The next morning we woke up to almost 50 cm's of snow in places or even more and the view from my dinning room window ...

... looked like this! Beautiful!

A thick blanket of snow had been placed on top every thing over night.


My roses now hiding away under the blanket of snow.

This little feathered friend sat in our flame bush looking to find berries that were just as colorful as he was.

And later the next day, as the snow slowly melted in places ...

... a little furry critter came to feed on pumpkin seeds that we had kept from Halloween.

I just love the little critters that visit us and I get so much joy out of looking at our backyard when the first snow has fallen ~ it is so magical and I wish you all a little magic in your life.
It was so nice of you to stop by and visit me again here at Todolwen and please do come back soon again.
I hope you are well and life is treating you kind.
Have a peaceful and creative day,
Karen B.  

Friday, December 13, 2013

A Christmas Miracle ..

Hello my dear friends,

today I would like to share something with you that touched my so much when I watched it.
It is a short video that was shared for the time on YouTube 4 days ago and already has had over 19.000.000 views.
It is about kindness, caring, giving for the sake of making someone happy, going the extra mile and making people once again believe in the magic of Christmas.

I am not going to tell you anymore but let you watch the video now of ...
... the 'WestJet Christmas Miracle'!
(I have no rights over this video but just want to share it with the world.)
I think it is so wonderful what WestJet have done and I would like to thank everybody at WestJet that took part in making Christmas magic happen and wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
And I would like to wish all of you out there in blogland a little miracle and Christmas magic this Christmas.
Many hugs,
Karen B.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

For The Love Of Poinsettias ..

Hello my dear friends,

I am trying to work on a few new Christmas ideas and creations these days ~ one of them being my felted wool blanket poinsettia, which I hate to say is still not completed because some things just take longer until they are perfectly right.

I love Poinsettias so very much and they are such beautiful flowers but since we have cats at home and poinsettias are very dangerous for them, I can't have the 'real thing' in our house anymore and that's a little sad but that's the way it is.

I was a little tiered a few days ago just sitting at my dining table and looking at the glum and gray wet weather outside when I thought that I should create my own Christmas flowers.
 How? .. I wasn't really sure at first but after thinking for a little while it came to me. At the beginning, as almost always, there were a few little hurdles that I had to overcome whilst working on the idea but in the end again everything came together!
My studio had everything that I needed, so I had no need to buy anything ... vintage music sheets, wire, antique mercury glass beads and a dash of glitter amongst the other bits and pieces you need when crafting.

It took me a day or so ~ because of the time to dry the glue ~ but then my first one was done and it looked so beautiful!
And here is ...
...my Christmas poinsettia.



Can you tell that I really like the way this creation turned out ... I took so many photos I just couldn't decide which one's to post ... so I used all!

My poinsettia turned out larger than I thought it would at first ~ it is actually slightly larger than dinner plate size!

An here some interesting things something I read about the poinsettia and Christmas ...
 The plant's association with Christmas began in 16th century Mexico, where legend tells of a young girl who was too poor to provide a gift for the celebration of Jesus's birthday. The tale goes that the child was inspired by an angel to gather weeds from the roadside and place them in front of the church altar. Crimson "blossoms" sprouted from the weeds and became beautiful poinsettias.

 The poinsettia derives its common English name from Joel Roberts Poinsett the first United States Minister to Mexico who introduced the plant into the United States in 1825 and in Germany the poinsettia is called 'Weihnachtsstern' which means Christmas star ~ isn't that lovely?!

You can read more about the poinsettia on Wikipedia if you like to know more about it.

I know that this isn't my one and only Christmas star I am going to make ... I am already thinking of how I could give it different looks but that will be for a future post.

Thank you for stopping by and visiting me here at Todolwen ~ it is always so nice when you do.

I hope you are well and life is treating you kind.

Have a peaceful and creative day,

Karen B.


Tuesday, December 10, 2013

And Finally ... The Wedding Video

Hello my dear friends,

a few days ago my daughter received her wedding video ... finally!
When I watched it for the first time ... just like on the actual day, tissues were needed to catch my tears again seeing my baby walking down the isle with her Dad.
My feeling of being proud of who she has become and my love for her are so intense.
I can't imagine how I am going to feel when our younger daughter will fly the nest one day.
But here is the composition of the day ... many hours put into 4 minutes but I promise you, you will not miss a thing all the laughter, tears and happiness.
Please, watch and enjoy the most wonderful day of September 23rd 2013 with me now ...  

... I needed tissues ~ you might too.

(Unfortunately I could not attach the Youtube video here but if you click on the title it will take you there.)

 I would like to say a huge 'Thank you' to  Andrew Ahmed for capturing this special memory for all of us. He created this video and is a very good friend of my daughter and son-in-law. He is the same amazing photographer and film maker that created their engagement video.

Andrew's talent is amazing and  he never ceases to surprise me with his work. I have included a link to his website and to his Facebook page so you can see more of what he does.

You can find him here ...

... or here ... 
If you have a few moments it is so worth visiting his websites ... you won't be disappointed! One of my favourite pieces of this work apart from what he has done for my daughter and son-in-law is a short film about a baby turtle he named Stanley. Seriously ... just go and watch it ... beyond beautiful!
And this is for you Andrew ...
I think I have said this to you once before but I would like to say it again. You have a god given talent and you should be proud of what you do because you bring smiles to peoples faces and tears of joy to their eyes with your magic.
Thank you for visiting me here at Todolwen again ... I so love it when you do!
I hope you are well my dear friends and life is treating you kind.
Have a peaceful and creative day,
Karen B.