Decorating the Tree – that was the plan

So I figured I’d get a load of laundry going, do a little cleaning, and start decorating the Christmas tree.  Standing downstairs in the laundry room I looked down and figured, eh these pants should go in…and the sweatshirt too.  Just as I got the washer going, Lola went nuts barking, jumping and clawing at the front door.

Oh-oh…somebody rang the doorbell.  And I don’t have any pants on.  No shirt either. No way to get upstairs without going through the foyer and since the front door has side lights, there’s no way to go upstairs to get any clothes.  The only dry fabric available to me was a small hand towel.  So no problem, a little chilly but I’ll wait them out.  Except Lola’s still going nuts and instead of the doorbell, whoever has decided that with all the barking I might not have heard the doorbell so they decided to knock on the door.  Seriously, if I don’t come for the doorbell do you think I’ll come for the knocking?  And don’t you see what’s happening to my door and windows?

In the lull between barks I can hear a little tap-tap-tap on the side window and someone saying “aw…look a puppy…too cute”.  No it is not a puppy, it is not cute and if you don’t go away soon, I really am going to open that door naked AND let Lola out.  How fast can you run?  So please, feel free to stop by but do call first – I’d appreciate it.

The excitement of visitors over and myself dressed I finally got on with decorating the tree.  First decoration every year is usually this one.  Hey, you bring a tree into the house and things happen (better than what Lola did the first year):

xmass tree09 016

I love my tree decorations because so many have been gifts or collected while traveling.  I also have a hobby of making eggshell ornaments that started with a gift to Niki for her first Christmas from my sister in law:

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Once I took a look at that I decided “I can do that!”.  And started collecting eggshells whenever I baked by cutting an oval out of the front of the egg with teeny embroidery scissors.  We did spit lots of eggshells out because I always missed a few little bits.  After cleaning them out, I coat the shell with Mod Podge, then paint, then use layers of shellac – and I always put them at least 3′ up since the Berner tail takes out everything on the lower branches every year.  These I also fasten very carefully since everything on the tree is a cat toy.

So, at the request of my blogger friend at A Detailed House (please, you have to stop by her site because she is the most talented and creative person I’ve run across) these are some of the ornaments that I’ve created over the years. Niki used to skate competitively and one of my first was this of her on ice:

Copy of eggs inventory 002

A little gift for the teacher:

eggs inventory 014And lots of just fun things using minatures, my favorite being tiny seashells (yes, that’s Chatham beach sand) that I find at the beach.

eggs inventory 019So those are just some of the ornaments but what would a tree be without the angel on top?

lola3 007Okay, so Lola wasn’t very happy playing an angel for long:

lola3 008

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39 thoughts on “Decorating the Tree – that was the plan

  1. So you left out the part about you almost naked when you were telling me about the “strangers: at the door. I love your ornaments and appreciate all the hard work you put into them. Beautiful!

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    • Oh I had my clothes on for those ladies. This was a few days after & at first I thought it was UPS or FedEx and they wanted me to sign for something so it was a real dilemma. Then when I heard the little voice I thought it was kids from the neighborhood but they all know Lola by name so it wouldn’t have been anyone on our street. I was going to call you to find out who was going around & figured maybe kids selling something for school.

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  2. Your eggshell ornaments are incredible! What a great idea. We are sticking to handmade felt balls as ornaments since that is about all the craftiness I have in me right now with three little ones. Hope we get around to
    more creative endeavors in future!

    Love your writing, btw! Very humorous. Funny youention checking out A Detailed House – I actually found out about you through a comment you made on her blog 😉

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    • Why thank you so much – I truly appreciate your compliments. With a Bernese Mountain dog & a feisty cat my ornaments are at risk but that’s why the bottom half of the tree has the unbreakables. You’d be surprised at how sturdy the eggs can be after a few coats of shellac though.
      I love A Detailed House & it’s funny how I’m led to other blogs based on comments people make on blogs I follow. Now I’ll enjoy reading yours. Thank you for stopping by, pleased to meet you.

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  3. How you had me laughing with this post. I can so relate to not being dressed properly and having a glass door. You just have to hope that who ever is at your door gives up and leaves…at least you have a dog to let them know they are unwanted. Love your ornaments…you are so talented.

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    • After that little incident I started thinking about how I wish we’d put a back stairway in when we built. I can tell you Karen, it was getting chilly & if you could see what that door looks like on the insides….
      Thank you, I love making the ornaments, sewing & all kinds of arts & crafts projects. I do lose track of time which probably explains all the smoke alarms going off in this house.

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  4. First, how funny getting trapped naked!! Second, I LOVE the ornaments!!!!!! I knew I would, but this exceeded what I had envisioned in my mind!!! I’m afraid it’s going to be egg dishes for my family morning, noon and night – haha!! I can’t imagine how many of these shells I’ll ruin before I’m even started! Third, you are WAY too kind to me!!!! I only wish I had your talent and wit!! Oh, I almost forgot….Lola looks adorable!!

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    • It was getting chilly in that laundry room! Thank you for the compliment on the ornaments & I can so see you doing them & taking them to the next level. Oh you’ll break plenty of eggs – but hey, only eggshells right? The heartbreak is when you break one after going through all the painting & glazing but some tips:
      Don’t even try to cut the perfect oval when you get the egg out. Just a rough oval so you can get a couple fingers in there. When you cut (can’t stress the tiny scissors that have little, thin blades w/sharp point) the egg inside keeps the shell sturdy. Once the egg comes out, just clean inside & let it dry. DON’t try finessing your cut until after you’ve Mod Podged it otherwise it’s just too brittle. The Mod Podge gives the shell some flexibility, almost rubbery feel. After the Mod Podge, I let it dry on this little stick w/a piece of foam on the end & stick that in a styrofoam 1/2 ball. Put the top hole in before any shellac. And eggs are very good food for your family! Do some baking too, that usually calls for a lot of eggs.
      I am very sincere about how much I love looking at your site – you always inspire & motivate me. Plus it’s great to show to my husband & say “see, love how beautiful her house is & she’s got 48 dogs! Yeah, Lola can look cute – an angel? She’s got a little more work to earn her wings.

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    • Glad you enjoyed & I truly had to debate whether or not to tell that latest tale but I figured maybe I should forewarn unexpected visitors. You could either get a large barking dog or me naked – both can be horrifying experiences.

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  5. Isn’t that the way it always happens? I know if I’m expecting a package, it will not arrive until I step into the shower. Guaranteed.
    Your eggshell ornaments are quite pretty. I’d never be able to make one and am in awe of you and your sister for doing so. And love the video of Lola Guard Dog and photos of Lola Angel. She’s such a complex pooch. 🙂

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    • That’s exactly the case – if not at the door, then it’s something like waiting all day for that important phone call & being soaped up in the shower when the phone rings.
      Thank you for the very nice compliment – I really enjoy my sewing & crafts which is something I never had a chance to explore while working full time.
      Perfect way to “explain” Lola – complex. When my friend Harry first saw her as a pup he said “oh-oh, something in her eyes – you’re going to have you hands full”. He was right. She may have a big voice, but she’s a sweet as can be…just has no idea of her size.

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  6. Bongo nominated you for my Share it Sunday guest blog. You wont have to do anything just let me know it is OK. The post they nominated was this one but I won’t be able to put the video on.
    If you want to select another post no worries. ! am at http://mollythewally.blogspot.co.uk/. Scroll down to Sunday to see or they are in my archive too. Have a terrific Tuesday and just post me a comment on my blog and I’ll do the rest.
    Best wishes Molly

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      • No problem, I call her Lols & lots of other things myself!
        I love my arts, crafts & sewing – things I really never got a chance to do while working full time. When my daughter started figure skating I made all of her dresses & really loved doing the crystal & beadwork on the competition dreses. Do you know how many crystals you can get on a mere 1 yard of fabric? I do wear clothes almost all of the time, including crafting – hey I sometimes work w/a hot glue gun! And the clothes went in the washer because I’d been playing w/paint.
        Take care of that cold – you on solids yet?

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      • I’ve been eating a lot of soup…made a big batch of it on Sunday, and it is sustaining me this week. Leave on Thursday to go see The Family, so have to be better prior to boarding another airplane….it’s amazing how working gets in the way of our “fun”, en?

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      • Oh no…an airplane if you’re congested is about the worst thing in the world! Is that where you picked this up in the first place? Keep on with the soups & Dr. Diane says plenty of rest. Work…grrrr, don’t they know we’ve got other things to do?

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      • I would love to have just one Super Power – it would be to see germs coming at me in slow-mo, so that I could run in the opposite direction. Then, I’d know who infected me and weeks later go back to cough on them….or I would want to be Bewitched, and twitch my nose to get all of my house cleaning done…

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  7. I just loved that! I too have stripped down by my basement washing machine…streaking through the hallway to get upstairs before anybody has seen me!
    And btw, I adore Bernese Mountain dogs!

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    • Ah, see I’m not the only one trying to save a trip up & down stairs – thank you!
      Some people like (or tolerate) Berners from afar but there aren’t too many people that Lola doesn’t win over. Lola’s my 3rd Berner & certainly the most challenging.

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  8. Muliti-tasking always gets us moms in trouble… Now this would have never happened to my husband as my goodness to do 2 things at once, like laundry and putting a tree would be unheard of… LOL We have a peep hole. I love that little peep hole, as it lets me choose if I want to open the door or not. Beautiful ornaments and so unique. I am sure your tree is just stunning. Is it a real one? As it looks like it in your picture and I love the smell of pine. It brings on the holiday spirit.

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    • Ah, peep holes are better & you can even peep naked! Funny story about the tree – yes, it’s a real fresh cut tree & we do that every year. Now last year I realized (duh)… every time we bring a real tree in the house, my eyes puff up & I start wheezing. I had allergy testing done years ago & I’m allergic to a zillion tree pollens but for some reason I never figured out that just because I bring a tree inside the house that I would suddenly not have that allergy. My husband & daughter are so anti fake tree that I just suck it up but at some point I think we’re going to have to go w/a tree in a box. Maybe I can get a pine scented candle to keep everyone happy.

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  9. Hi Lola and your Mom,

    I found you from Molly the Wally’s blog, I loved reading this post over there, really made us chuckle!! Sounds like our house! 🙂

    Hope you’re having a fun day and it’s great to meet you 🙂

    Your pal Snoopy 🙂

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    • Hey Snoopy,
      Glad you stopped by & we’re thrilled that Molly the Wally featured our crazy house. A fun day? What’s a day for if not to have fun! This morning starting with that Moe cat teasing which resulted in the “running of the beds” & there may have been a big Berner butt on someone’s butt which resulted in a little morning grumpiness on “someone’s” part…but the cat started it you know.

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    • Why thank you very much & thank you for stopping by. I’m enjoying Molly’s blog very much. So far almost all of the decorations have stayed on the tree – but the lower branches have all the unbreakables since one swoosh of a Berner tail can take all of them off easily.

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  10. Hope all is well. I posted your comments on my blog from last Sunday. Would you be so kind as to pop over and leave me your nomination for next Sunday as soon as you can, Have a terrific Tuesday.
    Best wishes Molly

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    • Thank you, thank you & thank you very much. Lola tries very hard to be angelic but sometimes That Cat gets her in trouble. I really enjoy making the eggshell ornaments & my family is very forgiving of picking little pieces out of what I bake.
      I like your rule of thumb. I figure unless someone’s delivering a package I’m usually not thrilled with whoever’s on the other side of that door. I really love the guy who just happened to be in the neighborhood & noticed that I had carpenter ants but he happened to have a truck in the neighborhood that just happened to have some leftover spray – if I would just give him some money, they’d swing by later that afternoon…sure ya will.
      I hope you enjoy your Christmas & if you happen to have any leftover creations I can send you my address.

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  11. We had a dog like that – he would put up with all sorts of shennanigans because he knew at the the end of the day he’d probably get some food out of it – the look of exasparation on his face reminds me of our old golden retriever..

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  12. My last Bernese Mountain dog used to get freaked out by camera flashes (and just about everything) so I decided to go with rewards every time I took a picture. It worked, maybe a little too well because I can’t take the camera out without Lola trying to get in the picture. If you look at the hips, you can see how much this dog loves treats.
    The one that always surprised me though was our old cat. My daughter & her friend used to dress him in doll dresses & bonnets then stuff him in a baby carriage or handbag. Kids can get away with doing all kinds of things to pets but you’re right, usually the picture shows a very mortified animal.

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