Holidays

Share Your Style #388

Welcome, friends, to this week’s Share Your Style #388!!! Spring is definitely changing for us here in North Texas towards the upcoming heat! This past weekend, late spring storms came in with their humidity plus school is almost out for summer vacation. I am sooo ready!! ๐Ÿ˜‰

We have lots of wonderful features to share with you. And, can you believe that Mother’s Day is this coming weekend?? My mother is no longer here (she passed in December 2004), but my mother-in-law is! We are going to an orchestral concert this evening while this post goes up (actually wrote early!), and to a dance recital tomorrow night. Lots of fun getting to see our middle school students perform!!!

No features from me this week. I just gardened, relaxed and stayed off a hurting foot. I walk and stand on my feet a lot in the library helping students and putting away books that plantar fasciitis is trying to weasel its way in on my right foot. But enough of that!

So, let’s get this party started… ๐Ÿ˜€

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!๐Ÿ’œ 

French Ethereal: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest

***

And here are this week’s featured posts…

First up for our Mother’s Day weekend, Rita from Panoply worked hard in her garden and shares the bounty of a couple of years dedication ~ Mayday! Mayday! Come check out her story about lily of the valley… ๐Ÿ˜‰
Sweet Pea flower arrangements-Pinterest pin with images of a mothers day sweet pea flower arrangement
Wendy over at WM Design House shared her gorgeous post all about sweet peas ~
The Best Quick and Easy Sweet Pea Floral Arrangements ~ just lovely!!!
a table with raspberry cordial lemonade with lemon cake
Lynn from Living Large in a Small House brings us A Recipe for Raspberry Cordial ~ just like what Anne Shirley served to her bestie in Anne of Green Gables… Love it!
an image of a Lemon Meringue pie with cookie crust and a high pile of meringue
Esme from Esme Salon delights the palate with a wonderful recipe ~ Mile High Lemon Meringue ~ YUM!!! My mother used to make lemon meringue pie a couple of times a year. Cut the meringue sugar by 1/3 and you get a tarter pie! Comes out really good. :)’

Thank You so much to everyone who linked up this past week. A special thank you to everyone for always promotingย Share Your Styleย on your blog and on your social media channels! I do see it when I stop by and I appreciate the love.ย ๐Ÿ’œ

If you’d like to follow myย Share Your Style boardย on Pinterest I’d appreciate it,ย thank you!ย I do post all of the featured posts from each week’s SYS there plus usually other photos from those posts to my boards. ๐Ÿ’œย  Thanks so much!!! If you are new to French Ethereal, I hope you will think about subscribing to my blog.

***

Happy Mother’s Day, y’all,

Barb ๐Ÿ™‚

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter
Gardening, Holidays, Home Decor, Pinterest Challenge

Two Spring Chair Ideas to Inspire!

Welcome, dear friends!! This month’s Pinterest Challenge has us creating a fun Easter-time Spring Chair. Yes, a chair ~ totally fun and unexpected! Our host and friend Cindy from County Road 407 has found a really fun idea from Jamie at Anderson + Grant!

Our inspiration ~ what I see

Welcome to everyone coming over from Michelle at Thistle Key Lane for the first time! Isn’t this beautiful antique chair so pretty with this gorgeous woven harvest basket filled with tulips, a sweet rabbit scouting the scene, and a soft white afghan cascading out of the basket and over the chair Lovely!

I loved it so much that I thought It’d be fun to create a couple of spring chair ideas to inspire you in your springtime decorating.

Love Cindy’s springtime Pinterest Challenge graphic!

I shot these photos with my cell phone so they are a bit fuzzy and I apologize for that. Since then, I’ve shot only with my Canon. ๐Ÿ™‚

My first Spring Chair & Basket

I began this sweet vignette with a Longaberger cake-carrying basket set onto a chair I bought from my longtime friend Kathy. I recovered it with fabric from a dress I wore back in the late 1980’s to one of my brother’s weddings. I filled this basket with a small glass cake plate used as a riser for Momma & Baby rabbit.

Nestled in with our rabbits, I’ve scattered some soft green shredded paper used as Easter grass, glossy bright plastic Easter eggs, and a spring bouquet of mums and other flowers my husband just bought me! He’s a keeper… ๐Ÿ™‚

The last thing I added was a lace curtain I hang up in our bedroom every year for summertime. I love its softness plus it added dappled light. Here this curtain adds its softness and texture to the scene!

Now let’s check out our second Spring Chair out in the Garden!

Our garden

Over the past four seasons, I have worked really hard creating small planting beds around one of our backyard oak trees, under the primary bedroom window and out here along the edging of the western and southern fencing.

This spot is against our new garden shed/greenhouse (how I am using it) and faces south.

Let’s check out Chair #2!!

Since my roses aren’t in bloom yet, I brought out some dried roses and set them inside our flower girl’s basket.

This outdoor spring basket vignette has lots of texture

This chair came as a set with a small end table we picked up at last summer’s end-of-summer sales. I call it my Titanic chair…

All of the dried florals add their own special fluffiness and refinement…

The sun was rapidly going down when I came out to film after school last week. It had rained the day before so everything was fresh and clean! And here is our second chair.

One of our cement rabbits came out to play, too. A little nod to Jamie’s sweet cement rabbit! In the background, one of our David Austin climbing roses is being trained upwards on jute twine. Fingers crossed it grows more canes on the other side!

The vintage tablecloth takes the place of the white afghan in the inspiration photograph. Sorry the whites are blown out. I had some trouble getting the light balance correct while photographing.

And those are my two second chairs for today’s challenge. ๐Ÿ™‚ I hope you’ve enjoyed both of these chair stylings! If you like what you see, please consider subscribing to my blog and following French Ethereal on my other platforms. Thank you for stopping by! <3

Up next is Niky from The House on Silverado and her green vintage chair looks absolutely adorable with its floral bouquet and sweet rabbit! Please see below for links to visit everyone on today’s tour.

Happy spring, friends!

Barb ๐Ÿ™‚

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter
crafts, Home Decor, Tablescapes

Share Your Style #381

Welcome everyone to this week’s Share Your Style #381! A little bunny fun to brighten our Easter month as we check out this week’s featured posts… ๐Ÿ˜‰

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!๐Ÿ’œ 

French Ethereal: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest

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

Happy St. Patty’s Day to You! And a little leprechaun story for you. <3

And here are this week’s featured posts…

First up this week we have these super cute carrot pillows as part of Debbie-Dabble Blog’s post ~ Changing Seasons and Crafting. Fun!!!
Colorful Easter Table- Karins Kottage
Karin from Karin’s Cottage brings us this cheery Colorful Easter Vintage Tablescape. Love it!!!
Is Your Home Ready for a Refresh
Katherine from The Dedicated House brings us a little spring updating idea in her post ~ Is Your Home Ready for a Refresh? Review Ideas to Consider. Love this!!!
Homemade Mother's Day Treat Ideas
Claire Justine shared this beautiful tribute for all mothers as we approach the holiday soon ~ Homemade Mother’s Day Treat Ideas. Delicious!!
Penny from Penny’s Treasures shared her sweet entryway all decked out in spring decor ~ Simple Easter Entry & 1st Spring Blooms. Soooo pretty!!! (Love pinks…)
And doing a fun double-header, here is Penny’s massive storage solution for
How I Store My Spring & Easter Decor. I am totally impressed!! Question: How many bunnies do you think she has??? Love ’em all!!! ๐Ÿ˜‰
Spring Porch Tour with Hydrangeas and Spring Containers-The Crowned Goat
CoCo from The Crowned Goat wows with this festive feast of florals in her post ~
Cottage Inspired Spring Porch Tour. Look at those hydrangeas!!!
7 Simple Steps to Invite Spring Inside
Niky from The House on Silverado shared her lovely home in this
Spring Tour 2023: 7 Simple Steps to Invite Spring Inside. Lovely!!
Meagan from Decorative Inspirations shares a how-to in this DIY post ~
New Life to an Antique China Cabinet. Beautiful job!!!

Thank You so much to everyone who linked up this past week. A special thank you to everyone for always promotingย Share Your Styleย on your blog and on your social media channels! I do see it when I stop by and I appreciate the love.ย ๐Ÿ’œ

If you’d like to follow myย Share Your Style boardย on Pinterest I’d appreciate it,ย thank you!ย I do post all of the featured posts from each week’s SYS there plus usually other photos from those posts to my boards. ๐Ÿ’œย  Thanks so much!!! If you are new to French Ethereal, I hope you will think about subscribing to my blog.

Hoppy party, dear friends!

Barb ๐Ÿ™‚

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter
Holidays, Home Decor

A Happy St. Patty’s Day to You!

It’s that favorite day for wee leprechauns across the globe, this day is! And we are dancing a jig here to celebrate the patron saint of Ireland, St. Patrick himself… Let’s have a bit of fun in just a quick post! ๐Ÿ˜‰

According to the History.com, St. Patrick wasn’t Irish but…

{St. Patrick} found his faith while being held as prisoner by a group of Irish raiders.”

He was actually British but during his captivity in Ireland, he dreamed of converting the Irish to Christianity.

Our sweet lads and lassies are certainly happy that St. Patrick was adopted into Irish lore and are happily celebrating the day of his passing. <3

Probably, though, they are just celebrating because this year St. Patrick’s Day falls here on Friday, and it’s quittin’ time!!! Time to head to a pub for some supper and a pint…

Always good when it’s a Friday! ๐Ÿ˜‰

This has been a fun month for me getting to write a few more posts and sharing this tablecloth yet again. I bought it at the Peterborough Antiques Faire back in 2005 while visiting my brother and sister-in-law and family over in England. The boys went to see an airshow and Linnea and I and our girls went antique browsing.

I have long suspected that it is an Irish piece. It has little clovers carefully wrought into its design. One wee clover can be seen just to the left of this little boy’s shoes…

via Illustroon

Here is a cute clipart I found under free stock. A bit of silliness, really… I thought you’d enjoy something lighthearted today.

Being that I am roughly 38% Irish and another 48% Scottish, it’s only natural that we should celebrate a bit on St. Patty’s Day, don’t you think? Actually, it’s only a piece of pumpkin pie with milk as I am having.

Nothing stronger, lol!

And this is my St. Patrick’s Day post! Just a quick little vignette to celebrate the day!

Hope you have a wonderful St. Patrick’s Day and weekend,

Barb ๐Ÿ™‚

Uncategorized

Valentine Beauty in the Hutch

Happy Valentine’s Day, dear friends! Today I thought I’d share our hutch all decorated for the holiday…๐Ÿ’œ

Going for Beauty

Decorating the hutch for Valentine’s Day this year, I looked for things in my stash which felt beautiful and ethereal. This small Japanese screen was something I had bought while in high school (for a dollhouse my father found for me) or it was a gift from my father brought back from one of his military TDY trips to Taiwan when I was a girl. I honestly forget now!

However it came into my stash, it was perfect for pairing with the French sweethearts in this cubby. Adding a handmade Valentine napkin and a vintage Limoges dessert plate finished this little vignette.

I love dollhouses and though I don’t have one right now, it’s fun to decorate small areas as if they are dollhouse rooms. ๐Ÿ™‚

Originally, I had the hutch all decorated with winter plates and vintage Valentine cards, but I cannibalized the Valentines for the Valentine cloche I put together last week. Then, too, I decided to paint the dining room a couple of weeks ago following painting the laundry room.

So this sweet bird pair is my only Valentine in the whole redecorated hutch. I love these love birds in their rosy “birdhouse!!”

For the right side of the hutch’s lower shelf, I placed a 1990’s praying ceramic Cupid, a favorite teacup and saucer, one my size and one for little Cupid. This Villeroy & Boch Botanica coffee pot takes the place of a teapot here.

Teatime anyone?

Down on the buffet, I thought I’d set up a tea tray…

Pulling out one of my grandmother Rosa’s tatted antimacassars from the linen closet brightens the bottom of this tarnished silver tray.

A second smaller silver plate tray works great for raising the teapot.

Several of these antimacassars feature little boys on them and I wonder if Gramma Rosa didn’t think of my father as she created these!

This Royal Doulton chintz teapot, creamer and sugar are favorites of mine and pair well with the Old Country Roses china I have.

And here is the completed hutch! Dried hydrangeas nestle in the upper shelf with two teapots and a floral pitcher holding up a trio of vintage rose-strewn dinner plates. Just a nice soft look for Valentine’s Day…

Here you can see how the dining room walls are coming along. This is the only finished wall, so since the wall adjacent is still taped off, this photo is a little pinched in. ๐Ÿ˜‰

I did ask y’all through my Instagram if I should go with either of two darker colors on the lower part below the chair rail. In the end, after looking through all of my Versailles travel photographs, I decided to just go with my original plan.

That plan was to paint the main wall in Comet Dust and off-the-shelf white. The lower wall naturally looks darker, which is pretty cool. ๐Ÿ™‚

And that’s our Valentine’s hutch!

I think this will be a nice transition into spring and I might add in some greens for March but otherwise it is done for now. ๐Ÿ’œ

If you enjoyed this post, please consider subscribing. Thank you! ๐Ÿ™‚

I hope you have a wonderful, treat-filled Valentine’s week! Enjoy!!!

Happy Valentine’s Day, y’all!

Barb ๐Ÿ’œ

crafts, Holidays, Home Decor

Share Your Style #374

Welcome to this week’s Share Your Style #374, dear friends! As we come to the middle of January, we have lots of great features to share, including some Valentine’s ideas!

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.ย I appreciate you! I appreciate your subscribing, also. As always, I am glad that you are here… ๐Ÿ’œ

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!๐Ÿ’œ 

French Ethereal: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest

It’s always amazing to me how quickly Valentine’s sneaks up on us on what feels like just a few short weeks after Christmas and New Year’s Days. I personally am still putting away Christmas decorations but only because Mr. Ethereal hung a new I-beam style system of 4x4s from over our garage door.

Going up and down from the attic to retrieve boxes was getting to be a chore, and also a little unsafe. Both of us are over 60 years of age and falling out of the attic space is always a real possibility. Critters ate through a few things, too, which ticked my husband off so he brought EVERYTHING down from above to clean, repair, throw away, and to find new homes in the shed, in this new hanging rail system, or to be given away.

So, I am reboxing ALL of our spring, summer, fall and winter decorations into tidy, black and yellow Big Box store boxes. Ugly colors (to me) but they do hang well and are very sturdy. The used boxes will store something new, go to my mother-in-law’s garage to rebox things she wishes to store, or be given away.

But in all of this, I am finding beautiful things to put in our hutch and onto our mantel to share hopefully soon. ๐Ÿ™‚

While doing this, let’s check out our features, shall we?

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

Arctic Blast & Indoor Plant Overwintering, Production & Shed Insulating ~ prepping the garden to survive single digits (our thermometer registered -1 F. as the lowest temperature we had in our backyard). Also, this is a look at my first attempt at seed production. Hope you will take a look!
Sick at Home ~ Turns out I’ve had a third round of Covid, dear friends! I am thankfully feeling better and on an anti-viral, an antibiotic and a steroid. This particular strain of Covid tends towards bronchitis and not pneumonia, which is yucky but better for all. ๐Ÿ™‚

And here are this week’s featured posts…

Our first feature this week is from Debra of Common Ground. She shares winter whites in her post ~ Neutral Winter Dining Room with Paperwhites. Lovely!!!
Debra‘s post ~ Winter Whites Tabletop Vignette ~ is our double header this week.
Pom~Pom and Heart Valentine Garland
Carol from Bluesky at Home brings us this crafty post ~ Make a DIY Pom-Pom & Heart Valentine Garland. Sweet!!!
Linda Kilsdonk from Paperseedlings shares her 1 year self-challenge to paint 365 birds. Come check out the beautiful birds she has drawn and painted! ~ #365birds November 2022.
CoCo from The Crowned Goat shares 52 Weeks to a Simplified & Organized Home Challenge. Good thoughts to get us all going! ๐Ÿ™‚
Penny from Penny’s Treasures brings us her family’s Winter Family Room 2023. Love all of the pink with white!
Red Cashmere Sweater with Printed Skirt
Jennifer from Curated by Jennifer shares her winter fashion post ~
Red Cashmere Sweater with Printed Skirt. Perfect for upcoming
Valentine’s wearing!
big red chicken under the banner of how to take care of chickens
Charlene from The Secret Life of Homesteaders shares good advice on How to Take Care of Chickens. Love this!! I have always wanted to keep chickens, if only I could get Mr. Ethereal to agree. ๐Ÿ™‚
Emily from Hunny I’m Home DIY shares what to do with those waiting-to-be-used jar lids in her post ~ Rustic Farmhouse Mason Jar Lid Wreath. Easy and pretty!

Thank You so much to everyone who linked up this past week. A special thank you to everyone for always promotingย Share Your Styleย on your blog and on your social media channels! I do see it when I stop by and I appreciate the love.ย ๐Ÿ’œ

If you’d like to follow myย Share Your Style boardย on Pinterest I’d appreciate it,ย thank you!ย I do post all of the featured posts from each week’s SYS there plus usually other photos from those posts to my boards. ๐Ÿ’œย  Thanks so much!!! If you are new to French Ethereal, I hope you will think about subscribing to my blog.

Happy Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday week!

Barb ๐Ÿ™‚

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter
Christmas, Holidays, Home Decor, Recipes

Share Your Style #373

Welcome to this week’s Share Your Style #373, dear friends!! Sorry this is going up a day late, but I HAD to get a big project done for our Odd Fellows lodge. It’s mostly done, my writing hand is very tired, but it’s just about ready to turn over (the project, that is). So, let’s hop into our features!!!

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.ย I appreciate you! I appreciate your subscribing, also. As always, I am glad that you are here… ๐Ÿ’œ

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!๐Ÿ’œ 

French Ethereal: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest

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

Sunday Sentiments ~ Our Mary Had a Little Lamb Mantel – and why I chose this title. ๐Ÿ™‚

Have you taken down your Christmas displays yet? I always find it a little sad but it is nice to have a clean slate for doing some winter whites in our living room. I’ll share how it looks now with you soon.

I know many of you are still celebrating the 12 days of Christmas with the Festival of Kings, until January 6th, when traditionally the Wise Men showed up to greet the baby Jesus, so there might be a few Christmas posts featured here again. ๐Ÿ™‚

Let’s dig in!

And here are this week’s featured posts…

First up this week, we have Debra from Common Ground‘s beautiful hutch filled with Christmas pretties ~ Gathered for Christmas in the Holiday Cupboard.
So pretty!!!
Debbie from Debbie-Dabble Blog shares her holiday cupboard and living room in Christmas finery ~ A Thomas Kincade Tree, Village and the China Cupboard in the Den. You might enjoy her Christmas at Nelson Crest post, too!
new-years-eve-tablesetting-ideas
Our third friend, also named Debbee from Debbee’s Buzz, shared a lovely New Year’s Eve Tablesetting Ideas ~ Isn’t this penguin just the cutest?!!
Chili Mac and cheese recipe
We need something to put on all of our dinner tables this winter! Newcomer
Michelle from The Wooden Spoon Effect brings us a yummy recipe called
Simple Chili Mac Recipe. Perfect for our chilly winter weather! Welcome Michelle!! We are glad you are here. <3
penguin craft image collage with the words penguin name craft
Our second newcomer Sam from Simple Everyday Mom shared this really cute idea to make with your kids and grands!!! Welcome to you as well, Sam!!
So happy you found us here at French Ethereal!
New Yearโ€™s Eve In the Smoky Mountains
Vera from Veravise brings us a little New Year’s Eve in the Smoky Mountains ~ great place to visit, if you’ve never been there! This is where I went for my nephew’s wedding a year-and-a-half ago Memorial Day weekend.

And that’s it for this week, friends! A great bunch of holiday and supper recipe ideas, if you haven’t checked out last week’s SYS entries. I love looking back at your ideas and picking something to cook or bake, thank you. <3

Thank You so much to everyone who linked up this past week. A special thank you to everyone for always promotingย Share Your Styleย on your blog and on your social media channels! I do see it when I stop by and I appreciate the love.ย ๐Ÿ’œ

If you’d like to follow myย Share Your Style boardย on Pinterest I’d appreciate it,ย thank you!ย I do post all of the featured posts from each week’s SYS there plus usually other photos from those posts to my boards. ๐Ÿ’œย  Thanks so much!!! If you are new to French Ethereal, I hope you will think about subscribing to my blog.

Happy January, y’all!

Barb ๐Ÿ™‚

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter
Christmas, Holidays, Home Decor

Sunday Sentiments ~ Our Mary Had a Little Lamb Woodland Mantel

Mary had a little lamb, its fleece was white as snow… Just a lovely nursery rhyme… Today I’m sharing our Christmas mantel and the crazy mishmash of putting it together. Definitely a layering! ~ it took several weeks to put together into what it is now.

Of course I know it is after Christmas now, but I thought you’d enjoy seeing our mantel anyway.

Have you ever had the realization that this sweet nursery rhyme, Mary Had a Little Lamb, could be allegorical? It occurred to me here at Christmastime, that this rhyme could be saying much more…

[His] fleece was white as snow. From a Biblical perspective, Jesus was sinless; he was pure as new-fallen snow.


knowing that you were not redeemed with perishable things like silver or gold from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers, but with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ.

Source: https://bible.knowing-jesus.com/topics/Jesus-Christ,-Sinlessness

1 Peter 1:18-19

Everywhere the child went, the lamb was sure to go… Okay, maybe this part, isn’t so allegorical, but… Then again, everywhere we (humanity) go, the Lamb, is sure to follow. Meaning that Jesus follows us, that He is interested in us. He is concerned about our welfare!

There is more to this nursery rhyme and I don’t feel those lines are very allegorical, but for me this first stanza is.

I just thought I’d share that here on our first Sunday in the new year…

And I am sorry I haven’t written more about my faith this past year.

Confession time:

I visited several churches when we first moved to Texas and I was enjoying a church up in Sanger a lot. Living in our Prairie Home, our big RV, I went with several friends to this church on Monday evenings for a community dinner. Then I went to a couple of Sunday services and I was enjoying going.

One Sunday, there was a thing which happened which kinda freaked me out since I was feeling really insecure and vulnerable living in an RV and still feeling very homeless, plus being new to Texas… One of the people who used to live in the RV park shouted out my name before the service began, in the middle of the sanctuary, and I felt all eyes on me. She has little tact, and I hate saying this, but it is true.

It wasn’t good and I was mortified! I never went back because I felt called out.

I don’t know if you are secretly very quiet and private, but I often am. And though I blog, I don’t always share everything, and I think that’s how most bloggers are. Maybe I am wrong on this, do let me know!

More Type B than Type A, really.

Our new nativity found at Hobby Lobby a couple of years ago, before the other crash-landed.

Anyway, all that is to say that I haven’t been too keen on visiting more churches. It’s an excuse, I know.

I visit my old church, Calvary Chapel of Murrieta, from California online, still read Christian literature and donate to charities and read my Bible. I pray all the time for our students and for the safety of our school, our community, our home, my family.

My mother-in-law introduced me to her old church in Sacramento, which also has an on-line presence. Covid was good for getting churches and worksites to get online!

She flew out to California for Christmas and with Southwest Airline’s computer system crash, and her flight back to Texas cancelled… She decided to extend her stay. She needed a good visit home… <3

She didn’t get the extra year to adjust to moving out of her house of 57 years like we did when we lived at Lake Skinner.

Anyway, I just feel hypocritical, so… That’s why I haven’t written many Sunday Sentiments in a long time. Maybe you are experiencing something similar? Let me know. <3

But I plan on writing more of them as part of my New Year’s resolution, as it were. ๐Ÿ™‚


Our old Kirkland nativity (post from which this photograph was pulled) which was unbroken until a year ago. I am going to try to use car bonding to see if I can put back each figure. This very much mirrors what happened to a Nativity figure in Jan Karon’s book, Shepherds Abiding.
This older nativity’s statues were more than 12″.

I love Christmas, and nativities!!!

My mother-in-law loves them, too, and has quite a nativity collection! My own mother had a lovely old wooden creche and nativity she put out each year. One of my brothers has it now, I’m sure.

Sadly, when Mr. Ethereal was putting ours away last year, the 34-year-old box just disintegrated while he was holding it, and the foam inside fell out. The Wise Men and Joseph shattered.

We swept up all of the pieces, even tiny parts, all that we could see, and they were lovingly put into a clean shoebox.

I just haven’t had the heart to sort through the pieces and begin trying to glue them together.

So we needed a new nativity! I found a nice one, a bit smaller, at Hobby Lobby so this is what I featured on our mantel this season. This one is about 3/4 of the size of the old Kirkland one.

Choosing a nativity is such a personal thing, isn’t it?

I saw some really pretty ones at The Christmas Place in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, when my daughter and I were there for my niece’s wedding.

Putting our Woodland Mantel together

So, getting back to how this mantel came together, it really began with the two outlying grapevine trees. I found them on sale at Hobby Lobby in early October when I went in search of a couple of papier mรขchรฉ pumpkins to craft (a project for 2023!).

Hubby brought down a few Christmas boxes for me when I was prepping for November’s Pinterest Challenge putting together the Christmas tree and when I was making the little Salt & Pepper Snowman.

In those few boxes, I found the vintage style Santa tins and I added the Norman Rockwell tin I found around Thanksgiving time at a thrift shop here in Denton. Gini and I were creating gift baskets for the IOOF poker tournament fundraiser and there it was, waiting!

The little fuzzy reindeer I found at JC Penney on Black Friday with Hubby. They were so cute! I had to bring them home. ๐Ÿ˜‰

It really was a mishmash put together over several months and somehow it all works…

Really not a surprise when you think of Whom watches over us… ๐Ÿ™‚

On another note…

Have you seen The Chosen? It is a crowd-funded show about the life of Jesus from the Apostles’ perspective. I really enjoy the series and to me, it’s a really cool show!

It is Biblically based with ideas of what things the characters as real people would have talked about, in addition to portraying real events which happened during the lifetime of Jesus (and beyond, with the apostles) some 2000 years ago.

Much of what is said is straight out of scripture, and the actors who portray Jesus, Mother Mary, and the others, give their best performances. You can really feel God’s presence behind their portrayals!

Plus, I like that the actors are from all faiths and ethnic backgrounds! They make the show and Jesus so much more real.

My mother-in-law introduced us to the series last winter while she was staying with us.

I think you’ll like it! (That’s my plug). ๐Ÿ™‚

New Year 2023

Work for me is going really well. I am enjoying working in a middle school library full time getting to share favorite books with our students, giving advice and counsel as needed. I got approval for a scholarship to teach needlework to students after school; I just need to put together a purchase order for supplies. Our librarian and I are already staying late on every other Tuesday working with these girls and boys. I love seeing how eager they are to learn!

Mr. Ethereal has his own changes with work coming, so that will be a big change for us in this new year. Not my favorite thing, as you probably know… But, Life is always changing so it is nice to find solace here with you.

I appreciate you for this!!! And I thank you for your friendship. <3

Happy New Year, dear friends,

Barb ๐Ÿ™‚

Uncategorized

Share Your Style #372

Welcome to this week’s Share Your Style #372, dear friends! Here we are coming up on New Year’s Eve… Boy, this year has flown by!

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.ย I appreciate you! I appreciate your subscribing, also. As always, I am glad that you are here… ๐Ÿ’œ

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!๐Ÿ’œ 

French Ethereal: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest

I sure have enjoyed visiting with you this year, and now here in my eighth year as a blogger, I think about what changes I should make for the upcoming year.

Do you do that?? I’d like to do more vlogging on my YouTube channel if I could learn how to string videos together and get myself in front of the camera. Talking to a camera doesn’t bother me, it’s all the technical stuff, lol! I used to sing for the kids at church a number of years ago and that got me over the fear of talking into a microphone. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Well, let’s get to our party, shall we?

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

Our Christmas Table, Our Christmas Hutch and a Little Weather ~ I so enjoy having time off to really enjoy decorating for you! We sat down to a nice Christmas Eve dinner with our daughter.

And here are this week’s featured posts…

Chicken Sheet Pan Nachos
We start off this week with something yummy for your New Year’s Eve parties… Estelle from Homemade on a Weeknight shared these wonderful Chicken Sheet Pan Nachos. Yes!!!
3 Tips When Renovating Your Bathroom
Next we have Kathryn over at The Dedicated House sharing Creative Ideas for Bathroom Decor. Perfect for anyone looking to update theirs in 2023!!
Meagan from Decorative Inspirations shares this fun post ~ A Classy New Year’s Eve Table ~ inspiration for all of us who wish to “do it up” but can’t come up with anything fancy! (Me!)
Harking back to Christmas which was only just a few days ago now…
MaryJo from Master”Pieces” of My Life brings us sweet traditions in this post ~
A Christmas Tree Tradition Continues and Why It Is So Important. Love this!!!
Twas-night-before-Christmas-Eve-table-Johnson-Brothers-dinner-plate
Debbee from Debbee’s Buzz is back with a fun post we can store away for next season ~
Twas the Night Before Christmas Eve Table. I love all of Debbee’s table settings and this one is just adorable with the merry placemats!!!

I literally started some bibb lettuce, tomatoes and spinach in the shed/greenhouse today! It’s more of an experiment but the heating mat is underneath my domed seed tray, so… We shall see! I am getting my Monty Don on and hope to have tomatoes going year-round. ;)’

picture of seeds being started in black pods answering the question of when to start seeds
For us gardeners who really go nuts when we can’t play outside (yes, this is me!), newcomer Charlene of The Secret Life of Homesteaders shares this gardening post full of great information for indoor gardening ~ When to Start Seeds. Welcome, Charlene! Glad to have you as part of the French Ethereal community. <3
Arun from Jaipur Gardening brings us beautiful blooms from across the world in this post ~ Mild Winter in December. You’ll definitely want to check out this gorgeous post!
french toast croissant bake
Our second newcomer is Karla from The Happy Mustard Seed and she is sharing this scrumptious recipe for a Croissant French Toast Bake with Blueberries and Strawberries. Perfect for New Year’s morning!!!
30+ US Winter Hiking Ideas
Dave and Jamie from Photojeepers are back with something to help us get back in shape after snacking our way through the holidays ~ Best Winter Hiking in the US by Region. I love it!!! I have been itching to go camping, have you?
floral kimono, teal velvet boots, kimono style, thrifted fashion, Shelbee on the Edge
Shelbee from Shelbee on the Edge has THE CUTEST OUTFIT (and I love the teal boots!!!) in her post ~ It’s the End of the World as We Know It and I Teal Fine (+ Link Party #325). I love Shelbee’s fashion posts as they relate on so many levels!!! If you haven’t stopped by to check out Shelbee’s monthly “fashion follows art” posts, you should. A lot of fun and I always learn something new about an artist, a piece of artwork and about the hosts as well! Enjoy!!!

Thank You so much to everyone who linked up this past week. A special thank you to everyone for always promotingย Share Your Styleย on your blog and on your social media channels! I do see it when I stop by and I appreciate the love.ย ๐Ÿ’œ

If you’d like to follow myย Share Your Style boardย on Pinterest I’d appreciate it,ย thank you!ย I do post all of the featured posts from each week’s SYS there plus usually other photos from those posts to my boards. ๐Ÿ’œย  Thanks so much!!! If you are new to French Ethereal, I hope you will think about subscribing to my blog.

And that’s it for our last SYS of the year, ladies and gents!! I hope that your family is safe, healthy and doing well. We are truly blessed here in our North Texas home and have enjoyed a good year. Many blessings to you, my friends!!!

Happy New Year 2023 to y’all!

Barb ๐Ÿ™‚

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter
Christmas, Holidays, Home Decor, Tablescapes

Our Christmas Table, Our Christmas Hutch, and A Little Weather…*<:)

Merry Christmas, dear friends!!! No Share Your Style this week as I was just too busy prepping for the Arctic freeze on Tuesday and Wednesday, which blew in all over America. I hope you are faring well where you are and keeping warm!

We are enjoying a bit of relaxation with our daughter who drove in from Austin, Texas after work a couple of nights ago. Mr. Ethereal is off this week and next from work, as am I.

Later in this post, I will share our yard and how I used almost every spare brick we have to pin down sheets, blankets and frost blankets from the big box stores to keep our baby garden nice and warm, but…

Right now, I am sharing our table set for Christmas dinner!

What I used:

  • metal serving plates as placemats (link to the post where I painted them)
  • large Wedgwood Sarah’s Garden plates as chargers
  • Royal Doulton’s Old Country roses dinner plates, cup and saucer
  • white handled silverware found at Judith’s Christmas Sale last year
  • Old Country Roses Chintz pattern tea set on a thrifted silver serving tray (EEK!! I think I might croak at the price to replace this teapot! $399.00!!)
  • Christmas tree red checked tablecloth and napkins (found separately) at Home Goods
  • Christmas cactus as our centerpiece
  • Red & white striped fabric ornaments found at Hobby Lobby (much more affordable!)

* none of this is sponsored, but I thought you might like to know where you can shop for these goodies!

This was especially fun to set!

Just like over Thanksgiving, we actually used this tablescape for our Christmas dinner today for lunch.

I cooked Aunt Nellie’s pot roast with added carrots and red potatoes. YUM! ;)’

Aunt Nellie’s Pot Roast

“Use a rump roast or watermelon roast.” Ours was something else but turned out just fine. ๐Ÿ™‚

“Put tenderizer on it, then poke it and rub tenderizer over it.”

I didn’t put on tenderizer (does anyone anymore?? I think it’s a health thing) to this roast (never liked it), but I did poke it all over with the carving set fork and then used an English Rub I picked up in Fort Worth at the Stockyards a couple of years ago. Turned out great with all the herbs and spices!

“Cook in a cast iron skillet, cook dry for 1 hour at 275 deg. F. After an hour, put in water (2 1/2 cups) and turn up the oven to 350 degrees. Cook about 1 1/2 hours more (3 lb. roast).”

I put in about 3 cups of water, or maybe a bit more, and the veggies added their own water so a lot was leftover in the pan to make gravy. ๐Ÿ˜€ When I added the water, that’s when I added the pre-cut potatoes and carrots. They cooked up absolutely perfectly! Soft but not over soft.

“Drippings should be almost dry (normally with 2 1/2 c. water used) and crusted to the pan so that you make the best gravy! Dark, dark brown gravy.”

This is what I wrote down over 30 year ago, literally… Funny to read it that way.

Our daughter has to leave Christmas afternoon to be ready for work on December 26th, so we had our dinner today. I am soooo thankful she was able to drive up!

Great Gramma Gini was gifted tickets by my nephew and sister-in-law to go out to Sacramento, California, to their home for Christmas. She was really happy to go as she misses all of her friends (and family!) there. <3 It would have been fun to sit down with Gramma and Granddaughter together… They keep missing each other!

upper left side of our china hutch

I’m sorry I haven’t posted hardly anything this fall! Part of me just wasn’t feeling like writing, though I have a number of unfinished drafts. It’s tougher with my MIL around all of the time. We were off on our own for 34 years so it has been a big change for me. I am used to seeing family only occasionally and not every weekend. A lot of my free time is taken up there and with work, in general, as you know how it is. We did a number of fundraisers here in the fall, too, with the Odd Fellows (IOOF) and Rebekahs. I cannot tell you just how much having these two weeks off from school means! I can finally rest…

Yoda is struggling to get around, too. He has accidents pretty much everyday, and with his doggie Alzheimers, he gets stuck under everything… I’ve spent many an evening carpet cleaning, and getting him out from behind furniture. He paces and I am constantly picking him up off the tile floor in the kitchen. Rest in the evening is rare until he is taken back to bed in our bedroom.

I tried taking him for a walk about two months ago, as it turned into fall around here in North Texas. He just turned his head and wanted to go back home… Sad for all of us, but he still loves his food and tonight he will have leftover roast mixed in. Usually I put in Little Caesar’s chicken and veggies into his Iams Senior kibble for smaller dogs, but today is feasting day!! Btw, he really enjoyed it!

A new glass Santa found on Black Friday at JC Penney for 1/2 price, I think. Middle right of the hutch.

Here is our china hutch

I know this is a mishmash-kind-of-a-post, but since I’ve hardly shared anything all fall, I wanted to at least share a little of what Christmas I did get put out. I didn’t even get all of the stuff cleared off of it. Real life! ๐Ÿ™‚

There’s a fun picture frame waiting for tiny gold nails to nail the hanger on it, then I can hang it in the hallway. Some jelly jars for Gramma as she would like to make some peach jam next year. A little fallish gnome I found at Winco while grocery shopping one day….

That picture frame I picked up at a store with the kids when they were down last Christmas (our son, DIL and grandson from South Dakota), and we had gone shopping down by the racetrack.

Or maybe it was found at the mall in Garland… It was Garland.

We had taken Milo to see the aquarium there in the morning, then had lunch and shopping at the mall there. We went to a second outdoor mall down towards Fort Worth later in the late afternoon, then had dinner out before driving home.

Was a fun time that week before Christmas 2021!

centerpiece of the hutch ~ the angel door!

Here in the hutch, I really only swapped out the plates from fall for the brown winter Johnson Bros. set. I added in the seaside photograph I picked up in Grenoble, France, at the little thrift shop I found while out looking for antique stores the Saturday morning before my niece’s wedding.

La Vierge ร  l’Enfant avec Catherine et un berger, dite La Vierge au Lapin (detail) ~ Tiziano Vecellio dit Titien (vers 1488/1490 – 1576).

I still need to share that adventure. I need to share more from France, too. On the list! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Meanwhile, out in the garden…

I finally finished planting everything except one small boxwood, so I put it in the shed until it warms up next week. When we knew that the freeze was finally coming in, I spent a good 6 hours on Tuesday raking leaves around all of the tender plants and putting mulch around many of them as I could.

On Wednesday morning, as the cold north winds were swirling in, I was busy tarping plants and putting the leaves back over them as I could. The bricks came in handy to hold things down. ๐Ÿ™‚

Hubby has almost finished putting up the insulation along the roofline inside the shed, so I’ll share that in the next post, how that is looking. Even down to 9 degrees F/-12.77 Celsius, it stayed at 40 degrees with the little floor heater churning away.

All that insulation I put up a year ago, plus the wood panels over top, the shed is staying pretty warm and cozy. The plants inside all look good. I water them about once a week as they dry out quicker with the heater on full time. On nice days, I shut it off and open the door wide to let air and light inside.

One of my squirrel buddies! He likes walnuts and pecans but not those filberts.

Well, that’s about it, friends! I think I’ve caught you up other than saying I am enjoying working in the library at school. I could do this until I retire in a few years. ๐Ÿ™‚

Here’s a little duck from my walk this afternoon… I posted more up in my Stories on Instagram.

Merry Christmas!

Barb ๐Ÿ™‚