Tag Archives: Pinterest

Here We Come a’Pinteresting!

We all have our treasured Christmas traditions. In my world, many of those traditions have changed and are still changing. Fast.

For instance, our family used to gather right after Thanksgiving, cram ourselves into a couple vehicles, & head for the mountains. With boots crunching the hard packed snow, we spent chilly hours choosing the perfect tree for each household, roping them to the tops of the SUVs. Then, with our breaths icy puffs, we waited while my mom poured steaming hot chocolate from an oversized thermos, passing us each a mug to warm our hands & our tummies.

Christmas Trees to Cut

Back home at the folk’s, Mother warmed up a big pot of Beef Burger Soup, which we downed with grilled cheese sandwiches. A nice change from the turkey overload. Then, time for the tree trimming to begin. With carols on the stereo, we helped the folks start their decorating. Stringing lights & hanging our favorite family ornaments, we made very merry. Then, one by one, departed home to dress up our own trees.

Christmas Ornaments

Eventually, the tree-cutting custom became too much for my aging parents. A store-bought, fake tree did the honors for the next seasons. A tradition lost. And missed. Ah…nostalgia knocks.

Fast-forward a number of years. Our parents passed away & we feel their absence. Yet, we still keep Christmas – just much differently now. My daughter is married with a family of her own. It’s delicious to have little ones excited about decorating the tree. Or maybe more accurately, “…excited about pulling ornaments off the tree.”

Gift cards for iTunes, Blue Ray DVDs, & the latest technological gadgets have replaced the shirt & tie as popular presents. It really is a new day.

There have been changes for me, too. Five years back, I finally dumped my dial-up for wireless. Got an iPhone. (About time I joined the twenty-first century.) Then decided to decorate my Pinterest page for the holidays. It took valuable time away from the vacuuming, true, but I managed to find a Christmasy cover for each of my Pinterest boards. It was such fun – almost as if I was stringing sparkly lights on the tree.

Too much? Probably. Overkill is my middle name. (Shh. Don’t tell anyone!) Take a look at my Pinterest Site at: http://pinterest.com/cathyelliott10/ to judge for yourself. While you’re there, check out my “Christmas Crafts” & “Christmas Quilts” boards. Also, “Christmas Decor” & “Christmas Recipes.” They are filled with great ideas for making your holiday even more festive!

I think I like Pinterest a bit more than I should. And I love Christmas! Combining the two is a given. Maybe I’ve just started a new tradition.




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Writer In (What?) Residence

While searching out historic writer homes to satisfy my Pinterest addiction, I noticed some houses had a name. They did not need to be an estate, nor in England or France. Many were in America.

We’re used to fictive estate names, right? They conjure up powerful images: Tara, the Georgian plantation in Gone With the Wind, Mr. Darcy’s Pemberley in Pride and Prejudice, the shadow-filled Manderley of Rebecca, or the more recent Downton Abbey featured in the popular PBS mini-series.

Melville's Arrowhead

Herman Melville’s Home – Arrowhead

Still, I was surprised to learn that Herman Melville’s home in Pittsfield, Massachusetts, where he created Moby Dick, was called Arrowhead. His sweeping view of grasses rippling in the breeze gave him a sense of the sea’s swells. In the distance, Melville pondered a scarred, massive mountain – Mt. Greylock – the archetype of the great, white whale. A house like that surely deserves a name of its own, even if it’s just a farmhouse. With the curious name of Arrowhead.

The Evergreens

The Evergreens

What about Emily Dickinson’s Amherst home – The Evergreens? Is there a name (or house) more charming? Or Beatrix Potter’s Hill Top – which looks out grandly from its hilltop perch onto the tangled gardens below? Charles Dickens’ Gad’s Hill House or Agatha Christie’s stunning Greenway?


Agatha Christie’s Home – Greenway

I looked to my own community where no private abode appears to have a name. My modest ranch-style residence, while cute & cozy, is no Ponderosa. Or South Fork. There is no hill-top situation or Doric-columned façade. We are talking humble house here. Yet, as an author, my inner-Agatha longed to give my little dwelling a name, too. But what?

Obviously, some have considered the grounds for a clue. Though with my notion of lawn care, beige is the new green. Short grass on life-support is my goal. A goal I have met. So probably not The Evergreens II.

The Ever-beige? Nevergreens? Greenless?

I know! Little House on the Prairie. Uh, no. Fitting, but not very original.

I do have some amazing roses that survive in spite of little attention. Let’s see…Gnarly Rose Ranch?

This isn’t as easy as I thought. Maybe I better go water the lawn so I have more options.

The House With No Name

The House With No Name

For more about Writer’s Historic Houses, visit: Writer’s Houses: Where Stories Live


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