Sunday, December 11, 2016

Faux tree and a recipe...

Have I mentioned how our cats dictate how we live our life here in our Humble Bungalow? They do.
How they are mischievous and how every year they climb our live Christmas tree and break our vintage baubles? They do.

We have resorted to closing the doors and keeping them out of the living room unless we are there ourselves to shoo them away but I have decided that this is far too stressful...
and so
we have purchased a faux tree to keep the peace and serenity
that we far prefer to savour.

Looks ok
 it has no fresh fir scent...
no needles to vacuum up...
and the cats...


they are not at ALL interested in it
So I can say for now, 
we can relax...


There are so many things to do during this festive season.

Being Entertained
Dressing up
Christmas events
Writing Letters
Sending Cards

If we opt out of some of these it is not the end of the world.
I like to pace myself and really enjoy the seasonal festivities.

We would be amiss if we did not acknowledge and 
recognize  the people who help and work for and with us over the past year.

MR. HB's  firm hosted a party...
I wore a simple black dress
mesh tights
Chelsea boots
 accessorized with a diamond necklace, studs and my diamond heart bracelet.

Festive ties are a favourite of MR. HB.
He is not a fan of the tacky Christmas Sweaters.
He wore the tie on the left...with a grey shirt and black dress pants.
Very smart indeed.

Here is my diamond heart bracelet.
I am collecting diamond hearts to create a modern day "family heirloom" to pass onto one of my grandchildren. 
We have three little ones so far and so I am planning ahead.
I want to leave them with something to remember me by...
besides my cookies, story reading and home cooked meals.

Blurry image but you get the sparkly idea...

Ojibwa duck decoys, a dome with an allium inside and some copper lights...

Chester says hello from under the tree...

I bought a big bag of tomatoes from the market on sale today.
Incredibly cheap and so fresh!
So I pulled out my Soup Sisters Cook book and looked up the Heirloom tomato soup recipe...

Roast halved tomatoes sprinkled with garlic cloves, diced onions and olive oil
400 degrees for 45 minutes.

Pop into a pot and use the immersion blender to mix it into a pulp.
Add oregano, basil leaves, salt, pepper to taste.
Then add 2 cups of veggie stock and simmer for 30 minutes.

Ladle into a bowl and enjoy!

Its been a busy weekend...
I have been up late two nights in a row.

Feeling a bit like I could benefit from an early night.

Will try and catch a few extra ZZZZ'S
Hope your weekend was fun.

~ Be Well and Be Kind ~


  1. An enjoyable festive post, full of Christmas cheer. Your diamond heart bracelet is unique, and very pretty, and those seasonal ties look very smart. What a stylish pair you must have been at the party.

    1. We were two of the elders at the soiree...dressed accordingly but nevertheless
      the young ones were much livelier!!

  2. I like the festive ties! I have a pair of pants with embroidered wreaths that I can't help but love. I don't love fake trees either but sometimes they are necessary.

    1. How positively festive!!
      Those pants should make an appearance on your blog!

  3. My husband said this might be a tomato soup even he would like. ~Mary

  4. Christmas can be a very busy time. Personally, I enjoy dressing up and visiting with friends.
    One of my favourite things is the Christmas Cantata at church. I have spent the last few days with my daughter who is recovering from surgery. She lives alone in a small apartment and I had fun helping her as she can not lift, bend or stretch. My husband really does not enjoy socializing so we keep low key. Next week, we are off to Puerto Vallarta for a sun break which will be welcome at this time. Your faux fir will look lovely and if you put some
    boughs about (out of cat reach) perhaps you will get the scent. My daughter can eat soup soon so I will try the recipe. It looks delicious and easy.

    1. Your daughter is so fortunate that you are there to give her a hand...when I had surgery years ago I had to take 6 weeks off work and we hired someone to do the vacuuming and housework...I was not even allowed to drive for a month!
      It can feel like forever when recuperating from a major surgery...
      I hope she is doing are a good Mother Madame!

  5. We had to resort to a "faux" Christmas tree with our first cat about 20 years ago. It's just easier than finding ornaments on the floor! I do have a pine scented spray called Christmas Tree that I occasionally spritz about the tree, but it's not quite the same! Wishing you a very Merry Christmas!

    1. The faux tree is working! The cats do not even give it a second look!
      Good idea about the spray...A fir scented candle might be next!

  6. That soup looks absolutely wonderful! Perfect for this snowy weather.

    Honey Bee

  7. wow Leslie looks beautiful. I too have a great fake tree...we Love it..the rituals around fresh trees were losing their fun and becomeing a burden for my hubby. This tree is now 3 years old and Beautiful easy and artful. I think that if you have to touch a "fake" tree or flower to test it's reality then it is a modern botanical art the famous glass flowers at Harvard....the observation and duplication is an art regardless of the medium ..fabric, glass, plastic, wood, paper.

    1. The trees end up being shredded after the holidays and so I suppose it is ok to just pop this back in the box for years to come....a friend of ours once purchased an orchid and thought it was real...until we all touched it!
      Have you seen the glass art installations and works of Dale Chihuly?

  8. Your recipe looks delicious!! I think this will be our last year with a real tree. We have no kitties but the needles and waste are beginning to disturb me. Have a great day!!

    1. They are messy and I would happily have one if it were not for the cats antics...

  9. I've looked at lots of amazing faux trees. For now, I have a Fraser Fir live tree. Sounds like you are enjoying all the holiday festivities. Love your heart diamond jewelry. Very pretty and lovely to pass it on to your grandchildren. Your soup sounds delicious. Nothing better than home made soup on chilly Winter days.

    1. I have really never looked at faux trees before in the shops...silly me I thought we would find one for about $100...when I saw a tall one at $1200 I nearly fell over!
      Ours was much less...I must have been living under a rock!

  10. Just lovely - handsome Chester, gorgeous bracelet and another recipe that I'll have to wait for our winter next year to try! We've stopped using real trees for many, many years now for a number of reasons with the main one being that we've run out of room in our present garden to plant them (or the Australian natives closely resembling firs) in after Christmas. In the last few years, I've been using eucalyptus branches that we've collected from our garden, placing them in large glass or pottery vases and covering them with colourful baubles. We still have bits of bark falling off that we need to clear up constantly, but the colours of the branches are spectacular in themselves and the dry leaves still hold a fair bit of oil that perfumes the house for quite a while. I don't like cutting down living trees just to throw them away. Just my view :)

    1. Love your idea of using branches...we have Christmas tree farms here where trees are specifically grown for the Christmas season. Often people buy live trees in a pot and plant them later in the garden.= or save them for next year. I don't like waste either.

  11. Your tree looks like it has lights only on it - looks lovely.

    1. Yes unfortunately, just lights as the baubles are broken by the kitties...

  12. I love soup these chilly days. This looks like a yummy recipe. Your home is looking delightfully festive! Enjoy the preparations.

    1. Thank you is soup season and a hot bowl of soup for lunch is all I need on a cold day. This one is WW friendly too!

  13. Oh, I know what you mean about cats and the live trees! One year when ours were young, one of them actually pulled the tree over! I have no way of shutting it off. I think he was after one of the decorations. We haven't had any incidents that exciting since. lol That soup recipe sounds yummy. I am planning on making some soups over the next couple weeks.

    1. Our previous cats did that too! They also shredded my imported Scottish lace curtains...we were not amused but what could we do after the damage was done?

  14. CHESTER is a GORGEOUS ONE!I like your FAUX TREE.................beautiful bracelet.......beautiful idea!

    1. The bracelet needs more charms and I need to find another heirloom project....I have 3 grandchildren and only 1 gift to pass on...ideas?

  15. I think your faux tree looks lovely. Yes I know it's not the same as a real one but needs must sometimes.