Wednesday, December 30, 2009

What a year AND a winner

I don't know about you but I am happy to see the arrival of 2010.

2009 was a very interesting year for us.
If someone would have told me that my youngest son would be in the hospital for more than half of the year
my oldest son would join the Army, be learning Indonesian
his entire family would be living in Monterey, WHEW
I would not have believed it.
O.K, I might have believed the hospital part.

Truth is stranger than fiction.
One thing I can say is, we have all
come through much stronger spiritually.
For that I am thankful.

2010 already promises to be a year of change and excitement.
I can't wait.

O.k. enough rambling.

This post brings me to the last giveaway from The French Elements
for 2009.
Whoo hoo!

This is what #91 (the Winner was chosen by grandchildren generator),
will receive.

This elegant (I think) white on cream embroidered pillow.
I love this damask flower.

The winner will also receive this Anti-Fatigue Gel Mask
by Chanel.
This is one of my favorite things.

So, #91 (aka Stephanie) come on down girl.
Your gifts will go out ASAP.

I really want to thank everyone that has followed my blog.
You are more appreciated than you know!

Now a shameless plug-hehe.
I have been busy adding items to my little shop.
I am an animal freak and have had so much fun making these pillows.

You already know how I feel about LOVE.
Second chances are amazing.

Since this is my last post of 2009,
I thought I would end with a fantastic youtube video.
Many years ago, we had the opportunity to go to Euro Disney.
The kids were in heaven.

While the name has changed, the magical feeling is still there.

Enjoy the show.

I pray that each of you has a spectacular New Year and may
God Bless us all.

Big hugs,


Sunday, December 27, 2009

Fa la la fabulous.....

A few days before Christmas, hubby and I stopped in
old town Glendale for lunch.
My son lives close by so I spend quite a bit of time in the area.

I have to tell you that I must wander around with blinders on because
I never went into The Cottage Garden.
Well, we went in and I was in Heaven.
This shop is absolutely amazing.

Next year, you will probably see a picture looking something
like this in a magazine.
Well, not really like this. They have REAL photographers but you get the idea.

The Cottage Garden and The Cottage Garden 2,
will be featured in Sunset (one of my fav's).

This is Carol, the owner of both stores.
We started to chat about blogs.
Carol has a lovely blog you have to visit.

I asked if I could take some pictures and the following is just a sample of what I saw....

The picture below is of The Cottage Garden 2 which has clothing,
and all sorts of FABULOUS things.

Front porch.

I love what Carol did with this market cart.
I didn't get any pictures inside of The Cottage Garden2
because the memory card was full.

Now, I have a very good excuse to go back-hehe.

I am keeping my eyes wide open. If I have missed a treasure
trove like this, what else have I missed?

Note to self: pay attention and stay in the moment.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

The reason for the season

I'm wishing that each of you has a Blessed Christmas.
Take time to remember the reason for the season.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

A big Thank you for your support

I love my little prints.
A while ago, I did a post on prints that I have collected over
the years.

These came from France and they make me smile every time I see them.
Of course, they are all Santa and Eiffel Tower related.

Too cute for words.

Hubby is still under the weather.
Better but not 100%.
Thank you for your well wishes, I think they helped.

This photo was taken a few weeks ago at Hub's work
Christmas party.
What a couple-hehe.

I (WE)
want to thank everyone that has
purchased from The French Elements this past year.
The French Elements has evolved and I have too.
Thank you for embracing the change with me.
From the bottom of my heart, I thank you for choosing
TFE when there are so many choices out there.

The orders have shipped (last day USPS is Dec 20th).
1 to go.
Locals, you can still send an email and your goodies will
go right out via Barb's sled-hehe.

You know we support JDRF.
JDRF thanks you and we do too.
Every little bit helps. JDRF has been an important part
of our lives for years and I love
to give back to them.

I also want to thank my dear one. He has been
a boulder for me.
If I felt discouraged, he would pull me up by
my bootstraps.
He is a wonderful shipper and a schlepper extraordinaire.
Give him a list and he is off and running.
So, big thanks to you my love.

Now, that things have quieted down, I hope to be able to visit
all those blogs I have been missing.

Don't forget (I haven't), the December drawing for Friends
of The French Elements will be here soon.
Not quite sure when but before the end of December.

Happy Saturday!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Cough, Sniff, and a Christmas market in France

In the 6 years that hubby and I have been married,
he has only been sick twice. Lucky duck!

A couple of years ago, we were in Nice for Carnivale
and hubby got sick.
This had ugly all over it.
We were in Nice, it was Carnivale, and he was sicker than a dog.

We went to the local Pharmacy and hubby stayed outside
(he didn't want to get anyone sick).
I went in and tried to imitate his cough, etc.
The pharmacist had him come in and cough.

He smiled, and we left with a big bag full of medicine.
The next day, he was so much better that we went to the pharmacy
to thank the Pharmacist.

I was calling it the French miracle.
I've never seen anyone recover so quickly.

Right now, we could use that Pharmacist as hubby is not well at all.
I told him, I would be happy to fly over
and pick up a few things for him.

Of course, that is not happening so...
here we are.

While I take care of hubby, I thought you might enjoy
this video of a Christmas market in France.

I still think that maybe I should make a quick trip over
just to pick up a few things for him.

Enjoy the video.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Happy Chanukah and a special shout out

Happy Chanukah

to everyone celebrating this festival of light.

A very special shout out to the Lazarus family.
Each of you has a part of my heart.

big hugs,

P.S. The damage to the house is fixable.
Hopefully it can be done before the next storm swings through.
Thank you for your well wishes.

I hope to be back visiting blogs soon.
Right now I am knee deep in orders (yay).

Thursday, December 10, 2009

It huffed and puffed

and blew the neighbor's tree down on our house.

The 2 Christmas market posts were set to run via blogger options.
Don't you love that feature? I do.
While those were up, this is what was up on our roof.
I prefer Santa.

That storm that now has pretty much run havoc on the rest of the country,
hit us on Monday evening.
It rained on and off all day but the real storm hit that night.
It was a time of prayer, I can tell ya.
This is what we saw in our yard on Tuesday morning.

Big ouch!

Many people are still without power.
I am so thankful we are O.k.
Years ago, a microburst came through during the monsoon
and my house was the lucky recipient of major damage.
It took months for all the work to be completed.

I guess we could decorate the tree for Pierre.

We are waiting for removal.
The insurance company said to leave it alone and that is what we are doing.
Tommy is a little confused though.

I pray that everyone across the country has come through with no
major problems.
We are praying for you.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

On my short list...

I Love Christmas markets.

The crowds, the joy, the food.

I thought I would bring a German Christmas market to you.


Saturday, December 5, 2009

A big thank you to Sea Witch

I love to give but I also love to win (we all do)!
I won a lovely giveaway from Dari.
If you haven't visited her blog, I have to tell you that it is a must.

She is a military mom and right now is in Italy visiting her son,
DIL, and 3 precious grandchildren.
Her latest grandchildren are twins.
Double the blessings.
Jeff and Dorothy have talked about having another child in the future.
Maybe this grandma will be blessed with twins......

O.k, back to my win.
Love the packaging and beautiful card.

What is in this silver paper?

A fantastic necklace that Dari made.
The sand and sea glass was gathered from Elbow Cay by Dari.
She put it in this little glass bottle.
The necklace is created from natural hemp and decorated with
bottle glass beads.
I am loving it.

Legend says that if you collect sand from a favorite beach you will return again.
Well, I've never been to Abaco in the Bahamas but perhaps
through Dari's necklace that wish will come true.
Thank you so much my friend.

I have a little Pierre update.
The last week or so, he was MIA.
Yesterday, he returned with a friend.

Love is in the air.

Have a wonderful weekend filled with love.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Finding my Ho Ho Ho

To be honest with you, we weren't sure if the Christmas tree was even
going up this year.
November left like a lion (wrong month for that).
A dear friend lost her husband and my son
had a few ER episodes.
I just wasn't feeling the HO HO HO.

When hubby brought in the boxes packed with ornaments,
it was like visiting with old friends.
I feel that way every year but had forgotten how wonderful
that feeling really is.
I needed that.

I have never been a theme gal when it comes to the tree.
So many of my favorites were made by the boys over the years.
Many of the other ornaments were picked up on trips or
gifts from friends.
I love all of them.

I thought you might like to see a few of my favorite things.

The heart above was made by Jeff when he was 4.
The little carved bird was a gift from my dad.
A customer made it for him.

This once fit Jeff. Hard to believe he had feet this small.
Oh, I do sound like a mom now.....

Nothing better than a paper gingerbread man with glitter.
Another Jeff project.

The ornament above was made by my youngest son (JW).
That picture captures his spirit better than any I've seen.
This one makes me smile and smile and smile.

JW loved his glitter too.
And I love his paper gingerbread man.

Isn't this little framed photo precious (sounding like mom again).
JW at 3. Hard to believe he will be 27 next month.

Looking at this post, I guess I am a theme gal after all.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Counting them....

On this Thanksgiving eve, I am counting my blessings.
I have so much to be thankful for
that includes each of you.

When I started blogging, I had no idea that so many of you
would become friends.
While we have never met, you are all in my heart.

You have enriched my life and brought much joy and for that I am thankful.

Enjoy your time spent with friends and family.
Happy Thanksgiving and remember to count your blessings.


Monday, November 23, 2009

The November winner from The French Elements giveaway

I can't believe that Thanksgiving is in a few days.
I know you all can relate to this.
The year has just flown by.

I thought I would do The French Elements November giveaway
a little bit early as this is such a busy time.

My son thought the number 53 sounded lucky to him.
So Leigh from Tales from Bloggeritaville is the winner.

The giveaway for November includes a flour sack towel
with a forest green tree embroidered on it.

The embroidered pillow says JOY.
Leigh, I hope you enjoy these goodies.

December is right around the corner so there is always
another chance to win.

Big hugs to everyone,

Friday, November 20, 2009

Have a dream filled weekend

May your weekend be filled

with beautiful dreams.

Big hugs,


Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Thank you Miss Maggie

I received these wonderful awards from the very
generous Maggie at Normandy Life.
Thank you so much.
Both are really appreciated.

If you haven't visited Maggie, you are in for a treat.
She has a beyond French blog which I know you will love.
She has a generous spirit too.
She and her hubby live in a 16thc/18c Presbytere
that they have totally renovated.
It is amazing and can I just say I would like to move in with them!

I get to share with you 7 things you might not know about me.

  • I can eat like a football player and not gain weight
  • I always sing in the car
  • My favorite show is TOP GEAR and I am not a car girl
  • I sing to Tommy (the dog) and he sings back
  • I am very good at keeping secrets that friends/family share
  • I am an animal freak
  • I was a hippie in my younger days
I am supposed to pass this onto 7 other bloggers but the hippie in me has taken over.
I pass these awards to each and every lovely person
that comes upon this post.
Please accept these from my heart.

Viva la hippie!
Just a little older now.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

In a place far way

Many years ago, (1971) I had the opportunity to
be an exchange student in the Netherlands.

The family I lived with had a family member that was part of the Dutch
resistance during the war.
He shared remarkable stories of hardship, bravery beyond belief,
and what it was like when the Americans arrived.
They felt it was very important for me to see where
many of those brave men were buried.
It was a very moving experience.

My father was a veteran of WW2.
He didn't really talk about his experiences.
I think they must have been too painful.
I know the sacrifices that generation made changed the world as we see it.

And now, I have my own soldier son.
I am so grateful for the sacrifices that these young men and women
are making on our behalf.
If I were younger, I don't know if I could step up to the plate the way they have.
I am so proud of our military.
While I adore all things French, I am very proud to be an
American and an Army mom.

God Bless our military

Thursday, November 5, 2009

We know it is Fall when Pierre arrives

Let me introduce you to Pierre.
Of course he has a French name.

We moved into our home in July of 2005.
A week after moving in, my dad became very ill and passed away.
A very sad time.

My dad's birthday is in September. A few days after his birthday, Pierre showed up.
I was standing outside and he flew right up on the fence.
I gave him some nibbles (sorry Tommy), he ate them and then flew away.

But, he kept coming back.
He doesn't like bird seed, he prefers other goodies.
Every Fall, he shows up.

I will be in the kitchen or living room and there he is, staring in the window at me.
He visits throughout the day during the fall and winter.

When the serious heat arrives, he leaves.
This bird is a lot smarter than we are-hehe.
I like to think he flies to northern AZ for the summer.

I look forward to his visits. May four years become five.

Have a fantastic weekend.
I know part of mine will be spent visiting Pierre.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

I know it is over but.....

I have some pictures of the ladies from Halloween to share with you.

Hailey is on the left (Juliette)
Annika is in the middle (fairy)
Jayde is a vampire.

Their new neighbor and friend on base, did the hair and makeup.
Cash was left as is-hehe.

Boy, do I miss them!

Monday, November 2, 2009

A whole lot of Frenchness going on

I spend quite a bit of time sitting in waiting rooms with my son.
I'm not complaining, just stating the facts.

Recently, I was sitting there and picked up this magazine.
I was hungry and the burger on the cover had my name all over it.

When I started looking through it, I was shocked to find that one of the best new valley restaurants was in my neighborhood and it is FRENCH.
Seriously- WE COULD WALK to it.

When I told Hubby, he was just as excited as I was.
We put a visit on our "short list".
We had lunch (both of us had the Cabernet Burger that was featured on the cover)
and it was a fantastic experience.
Kiersten and Snir Mor are the chefs/owners.
They actually met in Paris at Culinary school.
So romantic.
They created a little bit of France right in our neighborhood.
YAY, double yay!
I could make this a daily walk.

When we were leaving, hubby asked Snir "why here"?
Well, it turns out that they have a little one and the grandparents live close by.
Viva la grandparents.
I am so glad they all left France-our gain.

Above, are two books I picked up recently.
I adore Mireille Guiliano and have her other books (French Women Don't get Fat- see, I really must be French-hehe and French Women for all Seasons).

While I haven't started reading it yet, I know I will love it.
I'll let you know.

Any book about Coco Chanel has to be a winner.
The Gospel According To Coco Chanel- Life Lessons From The World's
Most Elegant Woman by Karen Karbo and illustrated by Chesley McLaren,
looks tres chic.
Can't wait to start reading.

I have been adding many French, Dutch, Italian, inspired items to The French Elements.
I can't believe that Christmas is next month. Yikes!

Last but certainly not least

is this sweet award that came from Marie.
She is one talented lady and has a beautiful blog.
If you haven't visited her, you really need to.
Thank you my friend.

I am passing this along to everyone that visits my blog.
It doesn't matter whether you leave a comment or not.
You are all the icing on my cake.
You know I love my icing.

Happy Monday.

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