A Christmas Visit with Judith and Botanic Bleu

For over ten years now, Judith Stringham, who writes the blog Botanic Bleu, has hosted a Christmas sales event at her home…

Upon arriving to her home about an hour away from where we live, Judith has a couple of teuteurs set up with lights and signs. This year with the COVID virus floating around, she has signs reminding everyone to wear a mask and also that this sale is not open to the public. Visitors had to sign up for the time they wanted and then confirm that you would be coming. Love her family’s acreage!

Totally love how Judith laid sprays of greenery around the base of each teuteur then placed green Arc de Bois (Horse Apple) seed pods like holly and its leaves! Btw, those “apples” are HEAVY and I can attest that they weigh about 2-5 lbs., EACH. Several people at the campground we lived at last had their windshields broken on their cars plus their RV’s dented. Happily, you can buy just “male” Arc de Bois trees; they are the ones in the springtime which lose their “ball blossoms.” Look for those in your garden center ~ awesome shade trees!
A quick look at the front of the Stringham’s home. Her sweet kitty is just in front of the garage door on the right.

Judith, her husband and sister have built all of the pathways surrounding their home and garden over the past 20+ years. The garden shed you will see was originally just a wooden structure but evolved to become a permanent solid rock beautiful building…

Isn’t this just the cutest??! Her home is part of my inspiration in my own garden, especially the pathways. On this day early in December, Judith’s sister was staying and was helping planting out in the upper garden. Let’s go check out inside!

I really wanted the large reindeer but just couldn’t afford it… Of course, I want everything inside! 😉

The sun was peeping in and out this day so I am sorry if some of these photos are a little dark. My appointment time was in the afternoon as I was working when the sign up time opened, so there aren’t nearly as many goodies as there were still available, as can be seen at last year’s event.

One of Judith’s big sellers are her boxwood wreaths and this year she has heart-shaped wreaths as well as her signature round ones. I bought one of her small wreath last year and it is still nice and green and dried perfectly. This year I brought home little “Noel” laser-cut signs to use in my Christmas decorating and to give as gifts:

from this year’s Advent week #3 post

I also remembered that Judith found these wonderful white-handled silverware sets and since I love all white place settings, this was my big splurge this year. Mr. Ethereal and I don’t buy each other Christmas gifts anymore so we usually just say, “Go get what you want and enjoy from me!” This is his gift to me this year. 🙂

They are stainless steel and can go into the dishwasher but I will probably wash them by hand just to keep them nice. I like the ceramic Shabby Chic look of the handles…

As I am writing this post, I just noticed the cute bee skeps… I’ll have to look for those next year… I did buy a White Christmas potholder to go with the kitchen towel I found last year. I also bought a softly scented candle which came in its own pretty box; it can just be seen up on the second upper shelf to the far right.

Last year I found a couple of sweet Belsnickel Santas and Judith had a few this year available. My “pile” of goodies is right there on the bureau: the potholder, a Christmas soap, a Noel sign to hang and the little Noels, plus a large heart (reminds me of those French cemetery hearts I would see in some blogs and in former Romantic Homes magazine editor, Fifi O’Neill‘s books ~ never could find any! ~ this is a good substitute).

I loved this birdcage, too, but unlimited space and funds… Maybe next year! Hubby wants us to clear stuff out, which I agree needs to be done.

Okay, enough about what I found and loved! Isn’t this such an adorable garden shed? She has another studio towards the rear of this potting shed (you can find it in this second linked post from last year… It has three sets of French doors and chandeliers…). The studio is larger and it is where she stores many things and also where she creates her treasures.

Judith had a post earlier this fall about making new shelves inside this smaller potting shed and I believe this is one of them (upper right with fleur de lis hangers). Love how she decorates!…

If you don’t already subscribe to Botanic Bleu you should check out Judith’s blog. She is a retired teacher and administrator now saleswoman and design influencer. You’ll enjoy her beautiful home and blog posts!

Her acreage reminds me of my last family home before I was married in the town of Shingle Springs, in the Northern California foothills. Part of the Gold Country area around Highway 49, and appropriately named for the gold miners who really mapped out California from 1849 onward, Judith’s two acres with its tall oaks really remind me of my old home…

A visual treat taking the eye “beyond”…

Even piles of downed tree trunks just look “right” in this setting… I miss being surrounded by trees but that’s also why we purchased our current home. I need tall trees; they are comforting.

Funny, this post isn’t going where I thought it would?… Does this happen to you when you write?? Now you know why I have the “pen pal” part in my bio! I write generally what I think. ;)’

I am going to try and build some French Teuteurs this next year and found a pattern on another blogger’s site. I forgot to ask Judith if she built hers or purchased them. They are quite expensive to buy so I am pretty sure Judith and her husband built theirs.

Don’t you just love her French garden?!! She has been to France a number of times and has such style…

Up on the deck


A real French park bench… Ahhhhh….

I hope you’ve enjoyed this look at Judith’s beautiful home and her potting shed and annual shop! If you are ever in the North Texas area, Judith has her shop open the first week in December and shares more about it on her blog and on her Facebook web page. Do come and visit!!!

Christmas hugs,



Share Your Style #286

Happy Wednesday, everyone! Welcome to this week’s Share Your Style #286! 

This link party is for home decor, DIY, crafts, recipes and the like, but you are more than welcome to share any of your family-friendly posts with us all. Please feel free to share this post too and join my small but loyal band of friends. I appreciate you!
 As always, I am glad that you are here… 💜

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is barb-square-headshot-copy.jpg

I am Barbara Chapman and I’d love it if you’d follow me here on my blog!

My sites:  French Ethereal  Instagram  Facebook  Pinterest  YouTube

This week we are jumping right in with last-minute craft ideas from this past week’s highlights! We have fashion and tablescape ideas and a recipe or two, also. Love this time of year which brings out so many of your fun ideas!!! Hope you find lots of inspiration for buttoning up your Christmas and Hanukkah shopping…

Here’s what I shared this past week at French Ethereal…

No description available.
Liz at Howling Liz created this adorable Mathilda Reindeer in this short and sweet post.
Inge and Elsa of ElsaRBlog are back from Holland with this quick and easy post to make these fanned Christmas Trees!!! Really cute and oh so easy!
Tiffany of Tee Diddly Dee brings us this perfect DIY Santa’s Mailbox just in time with Christmas just over a week away! This cute letter box could easily become a Hanukkah or Kwanzaa post box, too. Tee also had another fun post, this DIY Gumball Snow Globe, which I know you will love!
paisley skirt styled 5 different ways
Shelbee from Shelbee on the Edge shows us One Thrifted Skirt Styled Five Different Ways ~ Perfect from fall all the way through winter!
Sherry at My Journey Back shares her grandson and family in this lovely post about family ~ Crazy Blessed Days. Perfect for this time of year when family is everything…
Christmas-Inspired-Bedroom-Ideas-The-Crowned-Goat-1-1 Christmas Bedroom Inspiration Christmas Holidays
CoCo over at The Crowned Goat brings us her lovely bedroom all decked out for Santa in this festive post ~ Christmas Bedroom Inspiration. Love it!!!
Pear Frangipane Tart - Tarte a la Frangipane aux Poires / www.delightfulrepast.com
Jean at A Delightful Repast shares this recipe for Pear Fragipane Tarte. Delicious!!!
Cindy of Cindy’s Online Recipe Box brings out the best in this yummy holiday recipe ~ Bûche de Noel.
Debbee of Debbee’s Buzz shares her Woodland Tablescape in this holiday-filled post. Love love love this reindeer!!!
A christmas mantel 4
MaryJo from Master”Pieces” of My Life shared her beautiful mantel in this winter wonderland of a post ~ A Christmas Mantel. Lovely…
Debra from Common Ground is back with A Christmas Mix on the Front Porch. Love the buffalo plaid and JOY pillows!!!
Amy of A Day of Small Things shares this fun post (Can you find the elf?!) ~ Christmas Cozy in the Kitchen.

A big Thank You to everyone who linked up this past week. A special thank you to y’all for always promoting Share Your Style on your blog and on your social media channels! I do see it when I stop by and I appreciate the love. 💜

If you have been featured here at Share Your Style… Here is a button to copy to your site and to share.

If you’d like to follow my Share Your Style board on Pinterest I’d appreciate it, thank you! I do post all of the featured posts from each week’s SYS there.

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter

Happy Christmas Time,



A Recycle/Upcycle Snowman Tutorial

A year or so ago I made a few French Snowmen out of recycled bits and laces and I thought I’d share some tips so you can make some of your own! This is a fun project to make with your kids as the hot glue can easily be replaced with glue dots for safety…

How to Make Little Snowmen out of Recycled Bottles

Supplies you’ll need:

recycled bottles (like aspirin, vitamin and other bottles from around your home)

styrofoam balls in various sizes

chalk paint and paint brushes

black permanent marker to create a face, or use paint(s)


fabric and lace scraps for scarves and aprons

glue gun and glue


gravel from your driveway (for weight inside these light bottles!)


Begin by painting your bottles with white chalk paint or leave as they are. I painted right over the product labels since they are often hard to get off even with soaking in soapy water. Apply several coats of paint to cover. Add a few small rocks or gravel inside your bottles for weight and stuff in cotton balls if so desired to keep the gravel from rattling around.

Next, glue on a styrofoam ball to fit the bottle opening. Glue on the original bottle cap to create a “Snow Man” hat or an oak tree acorn cap to create a “Snow Boy.” For a “Snow Woman” or “Snow Girl,” create cute scarves and/or aprons out of bits of lace and fabric scraps.

This little snowman still needs a couple more coats of paint… Oooops! Turned out I grabbed the gesso instead! No wonder it took 5 coats of “paint” to cover. 😉

This is where you can get really creative! I am lucky that we live where there are a type of oak trees with these super large acorns. They have the best acorn caps!! These caps are the inspiration for how I began making these Snow people.

Turns out this species of white oak is rather rare and is a native of Mexico and Central America, called Quercus insignis. The acorns themselves can be up to 4″ in circumference! The acorn cap I used on this “Snow Boy” below is rather small compared to some of the other caps.

Here are the Snow People I made a couple of years ago in this post: A Christmas Craft ~ Snow People from Recycled Bottles. Back then I painted each styrofoam head but this time I didn’t bother, simplifying the process. Also, I just used a Sharpie marker to make this year’s Snowmen faces instead of painting them on, but either way is very fun to do!

He’s a rough and tumble boy with dirt and dust in his clothes. Just being a kid!

I’ll be making more soon but this little guy went off as a gift for a friend who was holding an open house sale at her home about an hour away. I’ll share more of that trip soon… 🙂

That’s it for me this time, friends!

I hope you have enjoyed this fun Snowman Tutorial.

Happy Snow Day,



Share Your Style #283

Happy Wednesday, y’all! Welcome to this week’s Share Your Style #283! 

This link party is for home decor, DIY, crafts, recipes and the like, but you are more than welcome to share any of your family-friendly posts with us all. Please feel free to share this post too and join my small but loyal band of friends. I appreciate you!
 As always, I am glad that you are here… 💜

I am Barbara Chapman and I’d love it if you’d follow me here on my blog!

My sites:  French Ethereal  Instagram  Facebook  Pinterest  YouTube

Here’s what I shared this past week at French Ethereal…

Put together a Fun Christmas Crate in 10 Minutes ~ Should have been part of this month’s Pinterest Challenge but I blew the deadline… Oh, well! 😉

Debra over at Common Ground shared her fall entryway table in this lovely Thanksgiving tableau ~ Transitioning a Fall Entry to Thanksgiving. Lovely!

And because I loved this post from Debra also ~ Using Vintage Frames for a Thanksgiving Mantel. Don’t you just love the layered frame look? Beautiful!!

How-to-Create-a-Holiday-Greenery-Spray-The-Crowned-Goat-1 Creating a Simple Holiday Spray Christmas Holidays

CoCo from The Crowned Goat shared an easy to make holiday spray used here on the door in this post ~ Creating a Simple Holiday Spray. I am all about simple this year!

Tiffany (Tee) of TeeDiddlyDee shares her beautiful fall hutch in this seasonally colored post ~ Fall Vintage Door Hutch. Totally love all the upcycled pieces of wood and turned pieces!!

Cindy from Cloches and Lavender shared this gorgeous wintertime wreath in this DIY post ~ Quick and Easy Winter Wreath. Simply stunning! Love the feathers… <3

A big Thank You to everyone who linked up this past week. A special thank you to y’all for always promoting Share Your Style on your blog and on your social media channels! I do see it when I stop by and I appreciate the love. 💜

If you have been featured here at Share Your Style… Here is a button to copy to your site and to share.

If you’d like to follow my Share Your Style board on Pinterest I’d appreciate it, thank you! I do post all of the featured posts from each week’s SYS there.

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!!!



Share Your Style #280


Happy Share Your Style Wednesday, y’all! Welcome to this week’s Share Your Style #280This link party is for home decor, DIY, crafts, recipes and the like, but you are more than welcome to share your family-friendly posts with us all. Please feel free to share this post too and join my small but loyal band of friends. 

I appreciate you! As always, I am glad that you are here… 💜

I am Barbara Chapman and I’d love it if you’d follow me here on my blog and on any of my other social media sites, too.  Thank you! 💜 Thank you for all your well-wishes, dear friends… I am feeling much better. I finally was able to get into a primary care office yesterday and I began antibiotics today to clear out the rest of the pneumonia. 

I am scheduled to go back to work next Thursday. Discussions have been texting back and forth on really cracking down on our students to wear their masks 100% of the time… Pray, would you?, that I don’t get the virus again and that our school can get through this and get healthy. Thank you! 💜

Here’s what I shared this past week at

French Ethereal…

A Few Fall Pillow Finds ~ My small pillow fettish… 😄 Best part? Most of these are reversible and I love the checks on the backsides for seasonal decorating!!!

And here are this week’s featured posts…

Jeanie from The Marmelade Gypsy shares a lovely post about visiting a sweet farm restaurant ~ An Autumn Celebration Continues. You’ll have to head over and congratulate Jeanie on the reason why!!! Love this post with its maiden statue, another Grinam Niam!

Debra over at Common Ground shares her cupboards in this fun Halloween and Thanksgiving decor post ~ October Whimsy in the Holiday Cupboard. Love all the gorgeous dishware!

Thelma of Thel’s Kitchen shares her recipe for Red Cabbage Slaw and her homegrown cabbages and more in this yummy post!

Simple-Thanksgiving-Tablescape-Ideas-The-Crowned-Goat-6 Simple Thanksgiving Tablescape Ideas Decorating Thanksgiving

CoCo at The Crowned Goat shared a past Thanksgiving table which I love for its simple beauty… And that monster turkey tureen! ~ Simple Thanksgiving Tablescape Ideas.


Debbee of Debbee’s Buzz  shares this wonderful Craft – Thanksgiving Bread Cornucopia and Pumpkin Rolls. Can you believe how beautiful this edible display is?! Wonderful…

Penny of Penny’s Treasures shared this early Christmas post ~ Vintage Sewing Machine Drawer ~ for making a Christmas planner. Love the sweet decoupaged vintage pics!

Honorable Mention

Rachelle of My Hubbard Home shared a yummy recipe for The Very Best Ginger Cookies for Fall Treats. Wish I could share a photo but some new programs won’t let me bring over any photographs. Happy to share the link, though, and these cookies look super delicious!

A big Thank You to everyone who linked up this past week. A special thank you to y’all for always promoting Share Your Style on your blog and on your social media channels! I do see it when I stop by and I appreciate the love. 💜

If you have been featured here at Share Your Style… 
Here is a button to copy to your site and to share.

If you’d like to follow my Share Your Style board on Pinterest I’d appreciate it, thank you! I do post all of the featured posts from each week’s SYS there.

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter

Happy linking!


Ethereal Christmastide…

This Christmas  was a bit of a slow start for me but now that Christmas is over, we have enjoyed the time that the front door has been all decorated, and some Christmas sprinkled all around, it is time to share some of the beauty…

These summertime globe lights just said “snowballs” to me
so they were our outdoor theme this year.

Welcome to  our home! Two Christmas trees graced our home this year and you can see our second tree in this next photograph. If you’d like to read the full Christmas post and check out more of our living room please find the link here.

The first Christmas tree I had fun making is a rendition of a Romantic Christmas Tree I had seen at Penny’s Treasures a few years ago. I remembered that tree the past three years and thought of my own wedding dress, clean and boxed for the past 32 years…

Photo courtesy of Penny’s Treasures.

Isn’t this lovely?!

Of all of the really romantic Christmas ideas I have ever seen and thought this would be a fun post to share with you! Penny created this soft and flowing Christmas tree by layering 10 wedding dresses (none harmed) in delicious layer upon layer ~ an ultimate ethereal Christmas tree in my book!

Last year Penny’s dress was also the inspiration for our Christmas tree in the trailer… I loved all of her tree’s silver, white and pink ornaments!

Christmas in our “Prairie Home” 2017, our fifth-wheel.
An all white Christmas tree says angelic. It says ethereal. It says peace and Christmas to me.

How about for you?

Christmas 2018 ~ a variation on the previous year’s tree.

A gown of lace and peau de soie satin, my wedding peignoir and its lacy dressing gown satin-pinned genteely around the waistline began the transformation… Adding pink crystal beaded flower pins and drapes of wedding section pearls (and a dove for peace) created a happy marriage of  laces and beading. 

Small ornaments were to be added last making this happy Christmas tree look more like the inspiration piece but I never got there… Just too busy with work and not enough time (or light) to photograph. 

Mr. Ethereal help me bring down the wedding dress box on top of a cabinet in our garage a few days before I took these photographs. It was fun draping the dress over the mannequin I bought this summer to create the gold 1920’s Downton Abbey dress.

Since our living room is all Christmas-y, I set it up there first… I added the pretty pink and cream glittery open rose pins to the wedding veil for a topper, then added the gold bow used on last year’s tree. They make a nice addition, don’t you think?

Then this wedding “tree” moved into our bedroom where winter’s afternoon light was truly ethereal…

My take on the inspiration Christmas tree still shows as a wedding dress, but the thought and elements behind the idea are all there in my French Ethereal style! 

Do let me know how you like it, won’t you?

Sharing with
Thursday Favorite Things ~ Follow the Yellow Brick Home
All About Home ~ Common Ground

Happy Holidays!

Merry Christmas!

Welcome to our Christmas home!  Better late than never I often think and this Christmas season’s decorating is no exception as you know I have been busy with work, meetings, deep cleaning and just getting our home ready for the holidays…

An early December mantel which never got to print.

Twas the night before Christmas when all through the house, not a creature was stirring not even a mouse…

With a mix of evening and daytime photos…

And some taken while still cleaning and redecorating…

Much which could have been laid out earlier couldn’t get done as Mr. Ethereal wasn’t home in early December. This is the time of year for EOY inventories at work and I needed his strength to pull down the attic stairs.

And then there was the constant Siren song on weekends calling for leaves and over 1,000,000 acorns to be raked and blow off to pick up from the gutter each week since early November.

But finally mid month Hubby and I scurried about moving boxes down and others up, cleaning here and wiping down there. Chapman Manor was beginning to be whipped into shape!

With help from friend Torrance Baker who came to help decorate our tree and finishing last minute decorating and cleaning just two hours before a Christmas part, for friends met through the International Order of Odd Fellows these past three years, Christmas was finally in place…

Cue the hallelujahs and hurrahs!

The fruits of a clean home, enjoying a bit of Christmas cheer and reveling in the birth of my Lord are happily in mind! New and old Christmas needlepoint pillows were in place and when the party was over, a long winter’s rest is all that is needed…

The stockings were hung by the chimney    with care…

An angelic gift from Connie and Torrance Baker ~ love this new
Lenox crystal angel!!! A lovely addition to our family Christmas tree.

A theme there wasn’t but one quickly emerged ~ “Santas…”

A couple of favorite family photos are arranged here, too! Mr. Yoda as just two weeks with us when this picture was taken one night at a Boy Scout troop meeting.

In hopes that Saint Nicholas soon would be there…

That Chubby Old Elf in many forms made himself known! Here in the built-in bookcase, Santas grace several vintage candy tins along with a new Hobby Lobby Santa found last year. A vintage Santa, created in resin but originally were made by this artist using apple cores, sits on the upper left-hand shelf ready to wrap his wreath around the goose next door… 

Making our way into the dining area more Santas abound! The newest dressed in his silver tinsel coat (found at Judith’s Christmas Event) stands next to one of the oldest of a pair of Santa candles found about 25 years ago.

As I am writing this I found this lovely little print of St. Nicholas and the story behind the real Saint Nicholas, a Greek who was bishop of Myra, Lycia (modern day Turkey). In this blogpost by Nick Rabiipour, I relearned that Saint Nicholas lived during the 4th century and helped many people during his time with the Catholic church. Today he is remembered as the Patron Saint of the poor, and others for his charity. 

As wonderful as St. Nicholas was, he also didn’t want to call attention to his work. Perhaps he didn’t want to because as Christians we are called to give our honor and glory to Christ Jesus…
So from my family to yours, we bid you Welcome and Happy Christmas!

Our porch with its final finished decor…

Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.

Matthew 1:23, King James Bible

Sharing with

Merry Christmas!

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,

Share Your Style #234

Welcome to Share Your Style #234! This link party is for home decor, DIY, crafts, recipes and the like, but you are more than welcome to share your family-friendly posts with us all! As always I am glad that you are here and there are so many great posts to choose from to share with all y’all… 

I’ve also come up with a new holiday banner for the party!! What do you think about it? Leave me a comment and let me know. 
I am Barbara Chapman your host and I’d love it if you’d follow me here on my blog and on any of my other social media sites, too. I appreciate your support! Thank you!

Here’s what I shared this week at

French Ethereal…

A Cozy Hot Chocolate Bar for Christmas ~ A Pinterest Challenge. Stop by to see all the great ideas shared by my friends for this warm winter challenge! Thank you to Cindy of County Road 407 for hosting us all! 

Just one post for me as I took a break to get well and visit with family for Thanksgiving…

Here are this week’s featured posts filled with
tons of holiday spirit…
Penny of Penny’s Treasures shared your bright and sunny laundry room all decorated for Christmas (check out her desk in there, too!). Love love love it!!!

Debra at Common Ground shared her collection of turkeys and platters and a turkey disaster story I know you’ll empathize over. Do check it out! ~ Turkey Talk in the Cupboard.

DIY Thanksgiving Table Family Photo Place Cards

These just crack me up!!! And although I am still sharing some Thanksgiving “leftovers,” there is no reason why this idea couldn’t be adapted to Santa and Mrs. Claus hats for Christmas (or Hanukkah dreidels, etc.). Love this post from Debbee at Debbee’s Buzz ~ DIY Thanksgiving Table Family Photo Place Cards.

It’s all about Porch Decor at Follow the Yellow Brick Home with Amber and this blog hop. Check out Amber’s beautiful 100 year old farmhouse porch and others for wonderful holiday ideas!

Pheasant Merriment Tablescape over at Panopoly with Rita may have been a Thanksgiving post but with so much deep red it easily transitions to Christmas. Beautiful!!!

Santa stop here outdoor Christmas sign

Here’s a fun DIY Craft Santa Stops Here post by Unique Creations by Anita. Easy to follow instructions included.


The perfect side dish for your holiday dinner, this Fresh Cranberry Salad recipe is flavorful and delicious!  Mandarin oranges, fresh cranberries, goat cheese crumbles and pecans make this Cranberry Citrus Salad incredible.

And lastly this cheery Citrus Salad by Erin at Delightful-E-Made will tempt your tastebuds. Yum!!!

Thank you to everyone who linked up this week and a special thank you to everyone who posts about the link party Share Your Style on your blog ~ I do see it when I stop over and I appreciate your support!  Without you, there’d be no party.

If you’ve been featured here at Share Your Style 

Here is a button to share and copy to your site and your featured posts, thank you!

I’d love it if you’d follow my  Share Your Style board

on Pinterest, thank you. 

Many holiday blessings to y’all…
Now let’s party!

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A Cozy Hot Chocolate Bar for Christmas ~ A Pinterest Challenge

Welcome to  our monthly Pinterest Challenge hosted by my friend Cindy of County Road 407.  Every month a group of blogging friends get together to share their interpretations of a decorating photo found on Pinterest.  This month it’s all about creating a wintertime favorite ~ a cozy Hot Chocolate Bar

If you are new to my blog French Ethereal, a hearty welcome to you! For all of my friends and for everyone stopping by from 
Our Southern Home, I am so glad you are here! 

Christy’s cocoa bar was wonderful wasn’t it?! Serious yum! She has the best ideas and the prettiest home (I love her fireplace with its pretty herringbone brick!). I just love her style!!

Well, let’s get this party rolling, shall we??  😉

This month’s Pinterest Challenge comes to us from Jessica Kirkland of Pen + Paper Flowers who has such a pretty website! Here in her hot chocolate bar, Jessica used a nice variety of rustic wooden boxes, a wooden cake stand and an oak round as the base of her display. I love seeing the creamware mugs set inside the vintage crate box!

She also has a nice collection of jars and bottles holding toppings and syrups, Piroulines, candy canes and marshmallows ~ fun toppings to put on your hot chocolate and maybe an ice cream dish or two!

My chocolate bar interpretation

I didn’t really have any cute wooden boxes to use for this hot chocolate bar but I had a new wood round to use as my focal point lift. On and around it I set out:

  • favorite Christmas and wintertime mugs
  • mismatched silver spoons set in a pretty Christmas mug
  • a small stack of vintage plates for little snacks are welcome enough.

To this I added in “The Goodies…”

  • a box of favorite hot chocolate
  • a tin of holiday tea (for non-hot chocolate drinkers)
  • some chocolate mints (wonderful melty goodness when added in to hot chocolate!)
  • candy cane rounds and shepherd’s crooks to crush-up and sprinkle on top
  • whipping cream (not pictured)
  • also fun ~ mini marshmallows (which I totally forgot to put out but have!)

All were set out on the beautiful English barley-twist tea cart I bought while in England and then my brother brought back with his family’s move back to the States for me in 2005.

Easy peasy yummy squeezy!

Creating your own hot chocolate bar isn’t difficult to put together and it doesn’t have to have many components to it, really. 

A close-up of the little Santa Christmas mug…

What will you put on your hot chocolate?

Thanks for stopping by today! I hope you’ve enjoyed my hot chocolate bar interpretation and are inspired to create one of your own for your next holiday event. 

I encourage you to stop by all of this month’s participants, too. If you can’t visit everyone right now, just stop back here to pick up the links and continue your visits.
Next up on this hot chocolately Pinterest Challenge adventure is Paula of Sweet Pea  and I know you’re going to love her hot chocolate station! Check out her Christmas family room, too. A wonderful room filled with happy memories and family pieces!
Thanks again…

Sharing with
Blogging Fifty
Thursday Favorite Things ~ Follow the Yellow Brick Home

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Holiday Season Features at the Hearth and Soul Link Party

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Chocolatey blessings to you,