Traveling by Blog ~ An International Dining Festival

Wie gehts meinen freunden? Just a quick trip today and let’s start this post off with a favorite song: “Make new friends but keep the old, one is silver and the other gold…” 

That Girl Scout song is internationally known and is a perfect opening for today’s trip around the world. Since travel is limited to short trips to gather groceries and a quick walk with the dog,  I thought I’d share some unique blogs with you which perhaps you aren’t familiar with.

Not long ago I updated my profile to read that I often think of blogging like when we all sent letters all the time, like we are pen pals. Inspired by an unused airline ticket just making my fingers itch to go somewhere fun… Let’s go armchair traveling from the comfort of our living rooms, shall we?…


First up is a visit to Mariette who writes from and lives in Alabama. Originally from the Netherlands, she writes about her  and her husband Pieter’s work (and their travels) as  mushroom experts! By far the most unique job I’ve ever encountered, Mariette shares so many wonderful stories, postcards and more from her late husband’s trips around the world as a mushroom grower. ~ The Living Mushroom Cave in Le Puy Notre Dame, Loire, France.

Next on today’s armchair flight around the world, you may know Fabiana of Fabby’s Living from all the times I have shared her lovely table settings. She collects all kinds of tableware (as so many of us do) and has family over quite often for tea or for dinner (when we aren’t in a pandemic situation). 

Here is a recent Quarantine Tea she shared with her husband (extra slices were props for photos only). I picked this post as I love how she describes her family here… You can really feel the love. Fabby lives in Ecuador and would welcome your visit!

Now let’s travel to Michigan to see Jeanie at The Marmelade Gypsy who shares her travels, working in public television during its early days, and the beauty of Michigan from their lake house. In 2018 she travelled with her husband to France and wrote this wonderful post about Paris: Bread & Wine Shopping!

Our last visit today takes us north to Quebec, Canada to the home of Thelma who writes Thel’s Days and Thel’s Kitchen from Thelmaday.blogspot.com. 

Here Thelma shares her quick and easy recipe for Beef Pot Pie – Day 15 of Quarantine. Normally Thelma is busy out and about with family members visiting lighthouses all over Canada and the Quebeçois coastline. Do look for her travel posts when you visit!

I hope you’ve enjoyed this little trip to visit a few of our French Ethereal friends! I’ll be bringing more travel ideas to you as spring rolls on, and also more of our backyard outdoor space, too. 

Guten tag!


A Bleu Christmas…

Hello there! Welcome back for part 2 of my visit to the lovely French country style home and gardens (and THE cutest gardenhouse ~ shown above ~ and she shed!) of my friend
Judith Stringham who writes the blog Botanic Bleu

A couple of days ago I shared Part 1 of my visit with Cindy of County Road 407 and Laura of Decor to Adore to visit another of our friends whom I met that first Christmas here in 2016 ~ Judith Stringham. 

I had never been to Judith’s French Country Christmas Event at her home in Mansfield, Texas before but I knew she held one each December for all of her friends. Judith is a retired teacher and administrator in her local school district, and this holiday sales event brings all of her friends together for a visit and some fun French country shopping!

Me and Cindy outside Judith’s adorable French country blue and limestone brick/stone garden shed transformed into her shop twice a year. Oh! There are those super big pinecones peeking out from behind Cindy on that little garden étagere. 

Judith is all about French country style (my absolute favorite style, as you know!) so I thought I’d share the rest of the fun photographs today that I took last weekend. 

I seriously wanted this urn… And those large round marble cheese platters…
And those glittery Christmas trees…

These pics were taken inside the garden she shed I shared in the last post (Judith’s wintertime photo of her garden from a number of years ago), and since then she and her husband built a gorgeous large greenhouse (of which I have serious greenhouse envy…) which sits just to the left and stepped back from the shed.

I will share that in a moment… 😉

So here we are inside!

Laura is checking out all the wonderful little French christmas and non-Christmas soaps and goodies decorated with foxes, bears and “les lapins.”

A better picture of Laura with Cindy… 🙂

Judith lovingly curated blue and white crockery, blue and white napkins, bespoke linen Christmas tea towels and also ones for everyday use, custom silverware, French country angels, small etchings and prints straight from France for us gardeners and decorators to use in our homes alike. 

Three of Judith’s friends from her former school district were there at the same time as we were and were squabbling (just a bit) over two large Christmas angels. (I think they worked it out!)   *<;)

Large angels were for sale and some furniture pieces(alas, no room!), as well as birdcages, holiday tins, gift bags and greenery and huge pinecones (Laura’s favorites!).

I am sure Judith made this dried boxwood Christmas tree. I bought a small dried
boxwood wreath to hang at home while here (shown above hanging on the mirror).

I found several things to bring back to our French country home and I will share them over the next week or so. One is this little Santa Belsnickel glinting in the sunlight here… And the small boxwood wreath…

Judith cleverly hung her tea towels on this copper railing below this tin garden sink. Her regular curtains hide soil and pottery the rest of the year. The butcher block counters are wonderful and cost effective (we used one $40 piece from Home Depot back in California to make our tv stand/storage unit in our master bedroom) and this gives me wonderful ideas for a future garden shed at our Texas home!

The white painted pieces across the top of the television and underneath it were butcher block pieces we cut to fit and painted. Very solid and sturdy, they make excellent non-warping shelving to hold a lot of weight around the home. Plus butcher block is beautiful in the kitchen! You can see more of our last home in this post here.

I would love to have shown you more but other people were shopping and I didn’t want to intrude. Here is Judith looking lovely in a custom-made scarf she won from another blogger she knows in France who curates and sells boxes to people who are Francophiles…

Seriously, from baskets to metal birdcages of varying shapes, to Santas and more… I could have dropped several hundred dollars without a thought. 

Laura, Cindy and I oggled over these French blue doors Judith made from
four French iron gate closures, decorative buttons, and sheets of thick plywood.

Let’s check out the greenhouse!

 The greenhouse is lovely with its French blue doors leading inside a bright and airy area to store tender plants during Texas’ super cold winters. This winter so far is pretty mild which is wonderful for gardening but not so good for next summer’s crop of nasty  biting no-see-um mites (Texas needs the super cold ~ around 0 degrees Fahrenheit ~ to kill the biting bugs off).

This is the reverse view looking back towards the house from the greenhouse. The interlocking brick pathways had me at hello!

Here is a close up of one of the lovely French doors…

And a couple of peeks inside… Nice thick mats to stand on for foot comfort and wraps for tender plants. Love it!

You know me and chandeliers!!! Here you can just see this beauty peeping out in the sunlight above the back double French doors…

ooh la la!!!

Another lovely view… I hope Judith will share sometime where she found all these French doors. What a lovely place to come and pot plants or to just sit…

A few looks more from the Stringhams’ veranda which wraps around their home looking back towards the garden shed and acreage.

I love this old French garden bench crafted from a gate or iron headboard with its watering can and planted evergreens… 

Etherealness at its finest!

Sharing with
Thursday Favorite Things ~ Follow the Yellow Brick Home
Friday at the Fire Station ~ A Fireman’s Wife

Holiday hugs,

Meet Judith and the Home of Botanic Bleu, Part 1

This past weekend  Judith Stringham who writes the blog Botanic Bleu held her annual French Country Christmas Event (semi-annual sale) inside her lovely garden house next to her home. Friends Laura of Decor to Adore and Cindy of County Road 407 invited me to go with them so off we went! Here is a little photo montage of Judith’s beautiful French country styled home and gardens on the country property she and her husband have here in Texas….

Judith’s French blue garden greenhouse ~ we loved the doors!
How about you? 🙂
Arriving at Judith’s home for the first time, Cindy and I were enchanted with how lovely her home and property are!

Sitting on an acre or more the home reminds me of the last family home I lived in with my parents in Northern California. 

Laura Ingalls Gunn of Decor to Adore and Cindy 
of County Road 407 infront of Judith’s she-shed.
The Stringham home is a beautiful wooden house surrounded by oak and other trees with meandering brick pathways laid by Judith and her husband over the 30+ years they have lived here.

Judith inside her she shed where so many French style treats were for sale.

Judith began writing her aptly named blog Botanic Bleu in 2012.  Her home and garden are showcased beautifully every time she writes, as this Christmas day post shows from December 2012…

Nöel Niege
During this Christmas season though the day was warm and dry.
Le lapin playfully flits around the garden!

Teuteurs Judith planted in the garden bed add structure and support to plants each year. Arc du bois crabapple orbs sit like pale green Christmas ornaments in a French planter. Rosemary bushes line the bed’s curve.
A view of the rear of the Stringham home with its double decker
French doors and palladian window. Isn’t this a glorious day?!

Sunshine beams in east facing windows flooding the living and dining rooms with wonderful light. French blue is Judith’s signature color and it shines here in her lovely home.

Love this pantry!!!

Topiaries bask in the late fall sunshine. Creamware plates, bowls and pottery enhance this metal shelving unit.

This is a short video I took at Judith’s home. 

Coming off the covered deck, Kitty kept us company as we peeked in the open doorway leading into the living and dining rooms. 
Judith has a green thumb and her rooted ivy cuttings show
her gardening capabilities.
Tomorrow I’ll share more as this post has already run long. We will look inside her greenhouse and check out what’s for sale during Judith’s winter event.

Sharing with
Share Your Style ~ French Ethereal
Hearth and Home ~ April J. Harris

Holiday hugs,

Share Your Style #202

Welcome once again to Share Your Style and this week is #202… I am Barb Chapman and welcome to French Ethereal if you are new here! For all of our returning friends, a big welcome to you, too.

This week I am sharing a couple of posts I wrote last fall about creating this antiqued cabinet ~ I have been
way too busy this past week finishing unpacking all our kitchen wares (OMGoodness we have a lot of china!), tidying up the yards and working in the garden, plus finishing getting the trailer cleaned and into storage over the weekend.
It is now ready to sell!

So… Here is the first part of when I refinished my little cabinet with chalk paint and the final reveal.
Enjoy these and hopefully next week I’ll have a new post or two to share.

Now let’s get to this week’s wonderful features!

The facade of the Alwyn Court Apartments, New York, Looking Up at Luxurious Buildings in Manhattan Theboondocksblog.com

My friend Mary of The Boondocks Blog moved from Greece a little over a year ago bringing her children back to New York and she often goes into the city of Manhattan to visit the sites.
And what sights there are ~ just look at the incredible architecture on this building ~ decorated in the French Renaissance style of
Francis I with terracotta ornamentation! Can you imagine the man hours needed to make and then apply all this trim-work???

Like icing on a wedding cake… Pure magic for anyone who loves iconic buildings anywhere but especially in New York State and the impressive trimmings rarely created anymore. You must stop by!

Debra at Common Ground shares a look at her new living room ~ a place to rest and restore each evening after working all day. I love the neutral decor and of course I am a sucker for armoires! Massive storage and style points, always.

Thel of Thel’s Days and Thel’s Kitchen makes the list again this week with delicious currant scones. Yum!!!
Ever wondered what’s the difference between a raisin, a currant and a saltana? Well, of course I had to look it up…

The difference is the type of grape or berry used and size. Currants are made from seedless fruit which when dried end up slightly bitter ~ might be good for us pre- and full-blown diabetics! Raisins are made from a variety of grapes and when dried are very sweet, also larger than currants. Saltanas come from seedless green grapes and have a lovely golden color and are sweet when dried.
Now we know. 

A similar recipe also using currants was linked up by Lois of Walking on Sunshine who shared yummy Hot Cross Buns for Easter.

Bathroom countertops covered with marble contact paper

This isn’t your mother’s contact paper of old… 
Anika of Anika’s DIY Life shares how to use decorative contact paper in your home.  Love this marbled paper used on her children’s bathroom countertop! 
Do stop by and check out her post.

I was just thinking too of going out and picking up a roll to redo Mr. Ethereal’s dresser drawers. He had old brown butcher paper in them currently that has most likely been there since the 1960’s, seriously…

Love this little window styling with it’s napkin swag ~ part of a mini kitchen makeover at Kendra‘s blog, A Proverb 31 Wife!

Lastly, friends Heather and Lisa of Made In A Pinch although now living 2000 miles apart found a way to stay connected by blogging and this feature shares their cute spring post ~

Isn’t this little boy and his pet rabbit
just adorable?

Just a few rules ~ please visit a few folks before you go as we all like new friends and comments for all of our hard work. Thank you! As always, I am excited to see what home decor, cooking, diy craft and garden ideas you bring to Share Your Style each week.

Now let’s see what y’all have!

Time to party!!!

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Share Your Style #199

Welcome to  Week #199 of Share Your Style!
Can you believe we are almost at that 200 mark? We are proud that Share Your Style is still going strong and that you are here to help us celebrate this mini landmark!

Hello, I am Barbara and it’s my turn this week to host the party. Welcome to you all and please feel free to share our party on your social media ~ we appreciate the love!

A few party rules: 

*Please visit a few blogs while you are here and make a new friend or two.

*Feel free to link up to three home decor, DIY, crafts and recipe posts, thanks! Backlinks would be greatly appreciated as we try to grow… 

*And if you would follow your hosts we would appreciate it! Check out our other social media sites, too. Plus keep in mind that Google is eliminating Google+ at the end of March if you follow me there and any of your other friends. Kristin hosts White Arrows Home on WordPress so her’s is safe. 

Featured this week at French Ethereal

 I am sharing a trip to the Laura Ingalls Wilder Museum in Walnut Grove, Minnesota. This was part of our larger visit to see my son and daughter-in-love and their new home in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

We also went to visit an apple picking farm during our trip and snapped some incredible photos in the freshly fallen first snow of the season plus their friendly sweet dogs Bandit and Luna.

This is a quiet blog week for me as I just drove 1330+ miles by myself from Texas to California to meet the movers at our two 10’x25′ storage units. Our household goods have been in storage these past 3 1/2 years and finally everything will be moving into our new Texas home!

I can’t wait to share more of our home with you as we unpack and then begin work on garden design later this spring.

The mishmash in one of our storage units… Lol!

Here’s what Kristin shared this week at
White Arrows Home:

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Book Club, Reading List, Book, Reading

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Kristin has a monthly book club and in this post she shares three good reads!

Now for this week’s features


Up first this week is more from Deb-bee’s Buzz‘ wonderful
Wonderland Tea Party! Table decor and the menu is shared in this whimsical tea party themed post with links to her previous.
Love the fascinators!!!

Put two plastic flower pots together to make an easy patio umbrella table pretty springtime summertime planter.
This adorable DIY Umbrella Table Planter created by Victoria at Dazzle While Frazzled had me at garden-hello!

Easy Strawberry Oatmeal Bars filled with fresh strawberries stacked on parchment paper.

These Easy Strawberry Oatmeal Bars by Erin at Suburban Simplicity look so delicious and the strawberries are sooo good this year! I know you’ll want to bake some of your own.

Looking to add to your reading list this year? These are the must reads for 2019 - what will you read this year?
This adorable DIY Umbrella Table Planter created by Victoria at Dazzle While Frazzled had me at garden-hello!

Easy Strawberry Oatmeal Bars filled with fresh strawberries stacked on parchment paper.

These Easy Strawberry Oatmeal Bars by Erin at Suburban Simplicity look so delicious and the strawberries are sooo good this year! I know you’ll want to bake some of your own.

Jessie Fearon shares some wonderful reads to help us with our
daily lives and make them better. Mr. Ethereal and I have personally been working the Dave Ramsey “live-only -on-cash” plan for over a year now ~ and it works!

Lori at Dining Delight created this fun and festive St. Patrick’s Day tablescape ~ perfect as a last-minute idea to use in our own homes. 

Love all the green!

Inexpensive Box Store Table After Makeover

Our last feature this week is from Marie who writes The Interior Frugalista and shares how to make a Box Store Table Look Expensive.

Please stop by each of our featured artists and let them know how much you like their work!

Let’s party!

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Share Your Style #198

Welcome to week #198 of Share Your Style Link Party! I’m Kristin of White Arrows Home. My cohost Barbara and I are so glad you are joining us and love seeing what you share each week!!

We’d love to have you follow us on our blogs and social media so we can get to know you better.

This week on White Arrows Home

I shared my spring Botanical mantel from last year as I begin thinking about this year. See more through the link below.

This week on White Arrows Home

I shared my spring Botanical mantel from last year as I begin thinking about this year. See more through the link below.

I host a monthly book club on my blog and one of my February picks was Life is Good by Bert and John Jacobs. It was a great read. Read my 12 Takeaways and become a subscriber of White Arrows Home to be entered to win a copy of the book. Follow the link below.

This week on FrenchEthereal

Barbara shares about scheduling movers a look back at her old home and a look ahead in her new home.

This week on FrenchEthereal

Barbara shares about scheduling movers a look back at her old home and a look ahead in her new home.


And now on to my features for this week! Thank you to all who linked up, visited other blogs and left comments. It’s so fun to find inspiration and new blogs to follow each week!

by Follow the Yellow Brick Home

by Let’s Add Sprinkles

by Flour on my Face

by Botanic Bleu

from Simply Designing

Link Up!

Now on to the party!

Inlinkz Link Party

Share Your Style #195

Welcome to the 195th Share Your Style Link Party! We are so excited to have you join us to share, connect and be inspired. I’m excited to be your host this week!

Now on to the party!

I’m lucky to join my fabulous cohosts as we kick off another week. We would love for you to give us a follow so we can get to know you better!


•Barbara: FrenchEthereal / Facebook / Twitter /
Pinterest / Instagram 
 • Meredith: SouthboundFacebook / Twitter / Pinterest / Instagram

 We have just a few simple guidelines: please link up to (3) posts each week which are family friendly and related to interior design and home decor, craft ideas, DIY projects, recipes and the like.

We look forward to seeing what you are sharing this week!

Here are my features from last week:

DIY Faux Concrete Vase Tutorial

Cherished Bliss

Decorative Pens with Polymer Clay

Homemade Cinnamon Rolls

Pinecone Flower Heart

Pillar Box Blue

Thanks so much for stopping by and be sure to visit some others who link up ~ always good to share and congratulate!


Christmas Teas with Friends New and Old

Christmas is  the such a wonderful time of the year truly and I find it such a blessing to be a guest at other friends’ homes! Getting to share the season with friends and family is such a treat and today I wanted to share two special days with you all. 

Two special luncheons where friends gathered to share the Love of the season… Pour yourself a hot cup of tea or another favorite beverage as this will be a bit of a journey; however, I hope you will be truly blessed…

Two luncheons  so different in decor and style of home but very much the same… The first place we are visiting today is my friend and Bible study teacher Peggy Hayes’ home in Denton. 

We held our last study of the year where two special stories about the birth of the Christ Child were shared.

Peggy read to us from the gospel of Luke ch. 2…

The Birth of Jesus

1In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2(This was the first census that took place while a Quirinius was governor of Syria.) 3And everyone went to their own town to register.


There was no room at the inn… 

4So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 6While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.

And an angel appeared…
8And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified.10But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. 12This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”
A few tears ensued and smiles spread all around as we finished out study time and felt His holy presence.

Friends Peggy Luigs (L, Peggy #2), Carrie Ballard (back) and Peggy Hayes
(R, Peggy #1), our hostess.

 Our potluck menu

We moved all our study things off the table and shared our potluck luncheon of homemade chicken tortilla soup made by Peggy #1. A Raspberry Balsamic vinaigrette-topped salad with chopped pecans, mandarin oranges and ruby red Craisins and baby Roma tomatoes. There were tortilla chips for crunching on top of our soup and sides of crackers and cheeses and delicious Kosher bologna.

Now I don’t tend to “shove the Dove” as Pastor Brian used to say not to do at Calvary Chapel of Murrieta some years ago, so only a few times a year will you hear me really pour my heart out for our Creator.
Today is one of those days…

One of the many wonderful crosses in Peggy’s home.
Peggy’s home is filled with red everywhere ~ her favorite color! She also loves quilts and a casual country decor using long-loved and thrifted finds to create her loving home.  She has many beautiful crosses and Nativities, of which I’ve shared a few.

I shared a post last year about the scripture quilts which Peggy makes for friends ~ so inspirational! 

L-R:  New friend Jane, Carrie, Peggy #1, Peggy #2, and another new friend
Nancy, who is a pastor’s wife.

Food for thought

Here’s the gang! This was a wonderful day with good food of both kinds to nourish our holiday season-wearied souls. I for one am really glad that the Christmas Story was read as I needed to hear it again.

I hope you needed it too.

Laura’s super cute ornament display in her kitchen ~ based off the one I’m linking here!
Tea at friend Laura’s home  was the very next day and she invited three friends from her church to come hang with Cindy {who writes the blog County Road 407and myself for the day.

Laura as you know writes the blog Decor to Adore 
and has become a good friend over this past year as has Cindy. We like a lot of the same things just as my friends in California do ~ decorating our homes for each season, thrift shopping and antiques.  And of course a heart for Jesus!

Don’t you just love this pink decorated Christmas tree in it’s little cart??!

Laura’s theme

When Laura was thinking about what colors she wanted to do this year for Christmas her daughter suggested pink {I think it was} so Laura took a look through her Christmas decorations and ornaments to see if there was enough…

Happily there was enough and a pink-and-white decor for the Christmas season enveloped their beautiful home! 

This beautiful china hutch is part of a set of antique oak pieces brought
back from their living in Germany when Mr. Decor was stationed overseas.
Love, love the villages and castles on these vintage china pieces ~ so pretty!
Which goes along with the pinkish-red transferware china Laura collects ~ another similarity we have as I found some Johnson Bros. china a couple of years ago just after we moved here to Texas.

Here is a simple Christmas vignette on this blanket chest in their foyer complete with a sweet German Bavarian-style Advent carousel on top.  Fresh greens from their trees outside complete the decorations and show the Advent piece to its best advantage.

In a hutch in her living room near their Christmas tree sits a display of white ironstone creamware decorated with silvery Christmas balls set on beds of snow. Little cottages and tiny decorated chalets sparkle in the cabinet’s light… 

And more little Christmas houses beckon over on the antique carved server in the dining room.  Soft wisps of angel hair snow cozily wrap snow drifts around the town and church…

And the Gunn’s two weenie doggies came and visited with us, too!  This little guy is now 16 years old and such a lover and so jaunty in his Christmas neckerchief…

I apologize for not getting a good shot of both of them. I did try but you know how it is with kids and dogs and photographs ~ too much excitement to sit still!

A place setting for Jesus

After much visiting and meeting new friends we brought our soup bowls into the kitchen and served up the delicious chicken, spinach and cheese tortellini soup ~ heaven in a bowl!

Love this alcove for the range and all the brick!  The copper pans and sieves
remind me of the copper pans and moulds my mother collected.

Sprinkled with little slivers of parmesan cheese and pine nuts the soup had a nice crunch that satisfied all of our palates.  

I believe this is Johnson Bros. “Friendly Village.”

The Advent wreath

As we began the meal, Laura had us each in turn light a candle as she shared the story of the Advent wreath and what each lit candle means ~ this is a wonderful tradition her family has celebrated for years!

Each part reminds us of the coming of Jesus. The circle of evergreen branches represents “eternity.”
The candle lit in the center represents Christ as the “light of the world.”  The other candles lit in turn beginning on the fourth Sunday before Christmas represent as follows:

1. “Prophecy candle” ~ traditionally a purple candle and the first lit, in remembrance of the prophets but mostly Isaiah as he foretold of the coming birth of Christ.  This candle represents “Hope.”

Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel. (Isaiah 7:14, NIV) 

2. “Bethlehem candle” ~ or the “Love candle,” symbolizing Christ’s “Manger,” and is the second purple candle lit.

“This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” (Luke 2:12, NIV)

3. “Shepherds candle” ~ which represents “Joy” as the shepherds heard the Good News and went in search of this great news.  This is the third candle lit and it is traditionally a pink or rose-colored candle.

And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. (Luke 2:8–11, NIV)

4. “Angels candle” ~ lit on the fourth Sunday of Advent, the Sunday before Christmas, is the third and final purple candle lit.  It represents “Peace.”

My own little scene at home…
The symbolism of the day was not lost on us and more happy tears were shed for a baby born long ago whose sole purpose was to come into this world to save us all from sin and claim us as His own.

Our next course was a lasagna Laura made and served with a light salad which was wonderful! There wasn’t much talking around the table as we were just enjoying the meal and the ambiance.

After visiting for a while longer, we were ready for dessert and I brought in my Victoria Sponge…

This naked cake was what I brought to share and didn’t look this pretty when it first arrived ~ LOL!

A funny story: I made a cake the day before but it completely flopped and didn’t rise.  I tried using Splenda instead of regular granulated white sugar and probably overbeat the mixture, so… Don’t do what I did when you mix your cakes, friends! 😉

These two vanilla sponge cakes came unfrosted from Wal-Mart’s bakery here in Denton, Texas and thankfully theirs were wonderful!  Put together with lemon curd in the middle and a Mock Devonshire Cream frosting topped with berries and sprigs of rosemary, since I didn’t have a sweet pine tree close by.

The Great Cookie Exchange

Laura had set up a fun cookie exchange between all her friends and each of us was gifted with a Dollar store lidded bowl for taking our loot home.  

This is Cindy and she is sooo sweet!

Here is Laura with Gerlie on the left.

Yours truly cutting us all BIG slices of the cake.

Here are Cindy who is my other blogger friend (L) who also lives close by in pink {was definitely the color of the day!} sitting next to Nancy {I think? I am terrible with names and I do apoligize and will correct as I ask forgiveness!}.  She and the other Cindy were running off soon to help feed a group of people their church supports.

And here is gang #2!  
These last photos are courtesy of Laura Ingalls Gunn of Decor to Adore
who lovingly sent the to me.

Two lovely days meeting and sharing a meal in our Savior’s honor with old and new friends.
Much to be thankful for…

Sharing with
French Country Cottage
Sweet Inspiration
Share Your Style

Christmas blessings to you,

Share Your Style #178

Welcome to week #178 of Share Your Style! 

This week, Kim, from Serving Up Southern is your host.

Hey everyone, Kim here! I am so excited about this week’s party.
I’m honored to be co-hosting with these talented bloggers.

An image of the seven co-hosts of the Share Your Style parties.
I’m sure I can speak for all of us when I say we would love for you to follow us on our blogs and social media. It’s a great way to keep up with the latest and get to know us.

Recently over at Serving Up Southern, I shared:

  A mantel decorated with black crows, a human skeleton picture, a spider web with spiders, and pumpkins.

I love that Share Your Style has introduced me to so many new blogs. Several of the blogs that linkup are already some of my favorite haunts, but I’m loving the new (to me) blogs too. Thank you, to those of you who linked to our last party. You gave me so many choices, making it so hard to choose.

Here are a few of my favorites from last week:

Chinoisierie pumpkin sitting on a table
I love how Yvonne from Stone Gable made this Beautiful and Easy Chinoiserie Pumpkin DIY with designer napkins. I happen to already have some designer napkins here at the house. This just makes me want to have a crafting party with my girlfriends so we can make these. You gals know who you are. 😉

Porch decorated in beautiful fall decor.
Kristy over at the Starfish Cottage shows us How To Create A Beautiful Front Porch For Fall. She has put me in the mood to dress up my porch with some classic fall color. I love everything about the way she’s dressed up her porch for the season.

Wooden pallet painted in fall colors propped on porch with pumpkins.
Jennifer over at The Magic Brush shows us An Ombre Painted Pallet Project For Fall. When I saw this I immediately turned to my husband and asked if my pallet collection (collect from building our house) was still out behind the barn. He surely questioned my motives in keeping every single pallet that showed up with building material on them. I assured him that a girl can never have too many pallets. This might be the first pallet project I do from my stash.  🙂

Mantle with bat cutouts displayed in glass cloches.
Jamie over at So Much Better With Age shared this Bat Printable For Halloween (2 Sizes). I love the way she used them to decorate her mantle. Aren’t they the coolest “flying” around in the cloches?
    Living room decorated with fall decor and a vintage basket.  
Karianne at Thistlewood Farms holds us in great anticipation with her Wait Until You See What I Found At A Yard Sale post! I couldn’t wait to see what she had found! And boy-oh-boy did she find some yummy goodness! I love going to yard sales, and vintage markets and finding such treasures. Now go! Go and see what she found!   

Peanut butter pumpkin treats on a baking sheet.
Last, but certainly not least, Tracey over at The Kitchen Is My Playground shares how to make these Easy Peanut Butter Pumpkins. Aren’t they just darling! I think I know several little girls that would just love to help make these treats.

Well y’all, that’s it for this week. As I said, it was so hard to choose. I could have kept going but then this would have been a never-ending post.

Congratulations to our featured bloggers. Please be sure and grab our Share Your Style button and share it on your blog.

A graphic image of the Share Your Style linkup logo.
We would really appreciate it if you would provide a link back to our party from your blog post. 
Please don’t pin from images or thumbnails in this post. Click on the link and pin from the original source. 
Please, no repeats for one year!
Party On!



Dishing about Graphics on Day 2 of FILWTexas

Happy Tuesday to you all!  I know it’s late in the day and I had my Bible study earlier today so I’m just getting this posted, but I wanted to be sure and share more with you from the Fall In Love With Texas blog tour…

Both  the lead photograph and this one were created by my very talented friend and fellow blogger Katie at Let’s Add Sprinkles.  If you’re stopping by from Katie’s blog or from any of the bloggers on the tour, welcome!!!   I’m glad you are here.  Katie has worked hard on this tour and is creating a collage for each day.  Don’t you just love these sweet graphics?

So that got me thinking, if you’ve never created a Pinterest collage on Canva or Pic Collage {like Katie did here}, especially in the beginning they can be a real challenge!  I enjoy making them now and probably should do more as they are real eye-catchers.  I did make this one for a past post on decorating with white:

I love decorating with white and am looking to do more here for the holidays.
This particular post can be found here.
Whichever company you decide to use to format your graphics
they all have pre-formatted templates to help you with your design.
I’m always making Pinterest graphics on Canva.com but there are a wide variety of things which can be made:

*presentation slides
*Instagram posts
*Facebook covers
*email banners

Since we are heading towards the holidays; you might like to make this

How to create your graphic

Take one of your photographs and imported it into your graphic design site, then cropped it large. 

Pick out what type of item you want to create, such as a Pinterest graphic.  

From there play around with highlighting the different template’s words and entering your own.

Then play around with different fonts and colors ~ this is the hard stuff in the beginning but gets really fun as you start creating!

Save your graphic and “publish it.”  You can send your graphic straight to Pinterest, Twitter and other places, or  board you have on just download it to your computer to save and add to an upcoming post.  This is what I tend to do most of the time.  Your program should automatically save any work you create so you can use it again at a later date.

Well that’s basically it for creating a Pinterest graphic!  I haven’t created too many other things yet but I once you start using a graphics program you’ll immediately see its future potential.
Coming tomorrow  I’ll keep this post short and sweet as
I have a much longer post one coming out in the morning… 
It’s Mr. Ethereal’s and my wedding anniversary!

Here are the links for Days 1 and 2 of the tour and each day goes
“live” that morning. 
Stop back by tomorrow to catch the next day’s party-goers and please visit the previous day’s Texas bloggers if you haven’t already. Lots of wonderful fall decor and ideas being shared.

Jusqu’à demain {until tomorrow},