100 Day Project 2021

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Mansion Elegance

Christmas decorations can be simple like those in my last post or they can be glitzy and glamorous. From the moment you walk up to the front door of the Arkansas Governor's Mansion, sparkling beauty greets you everywhere.

The formal living room feels cozy with pretty stockings hanging from the fireplace mantle. I love the colors that are used to decorated the mansion. They're chosen to blend well with existing drapes and furniture.

The formal dining room fireplace is draped with a gorgeous garland that sparkles in the light of crystal candelabras and chandeliers.

We are very blessed in Arkansas to have a Governor and First Lady that know the real meaning of Christmas. I wish I had counted how many nativity sets were among the decorations ranging in size from tiny to one set with figures about four feet tall. There is also a life size nativity on the front lawn.

Not all the decorations are elegant, the glass atrium is a wonderland for children. I saw of a lot of happy smiles from the little ones as they watched trains travel around two separate villages. One of the trains was modern and one was vintage.

In addition to the trains, the decorations in the atrium were colorful and whimsical.

If you look up high on the second floor balcony you can catch a glimpse of Santa and one of his reindeer.


And, if you head to the grand hall you might just run into the real Santa! I assured him I'd been pretty good this year!


If you'd like to see more of the
Mansion's Christmas open house,
there's a nice video here.

Wishing you a Merry Christmas from Arkansas!

Monday, December 11, 2017

Pioneer Christmas

As I sit in my warm, snug home gazing at my Christmas tree with over a thousand multi-colored lights and ornaments galore, I'm wishing. Wishing that Christmas could be a simpler time. A time where Christmas really meant something. When Christmas meant the celebration of the birth of Christ. Don't get me wrong. Santa is loved at my house, always has been. I'm talking about the hustle, the over spending, the craziness of a commercialized Christmas.

I was reminded of a simpler Christmas recently when I attended a Christmas celebration at an 1880's pioneer village. I thought back to when Christmas meant a fresh cut tree, ornaments made from paper, and strung popcorn for garland.

I was reminded of when gifts were made and given from the heart; maybe a whistle or toy animal carved by father or maybe it was a handmade muslin doll or knitted mittens from mother. A time when a simple apple or orange was a rare treat.

I was reminded when decorations were simple.

I was reminded when love was the center of the home and love was the center of Christmas. 

Do I want long for those days of yesteryear? Absolutely not! I do admire the courage of those pioneers who struggled to make a home in a new land far from friends and family. I'm not sure I would have been able to do that. No, I don't long to return to those days. You see, I enjoy my modern comforts. What I do long for is a simple, quiet Christmas. That's my goal this year and so far it's working. I'm enjoying this season. I've also enjoy sampling Christmas treats. At the village we had sugar cookies and apple cider. They were delicious!

I had to laugh when I uploaded my pictures of these wonderful volunteers who dressed in period costumes and played the roll of pioneers. Check out the pocket of the man in the center. Could that be a red cell phone peeking out? Can't get away from modernism, can we? 

How is your Christmas season? I hope it is one of quietness, peace, and celebration of the birth of Christ.

Sunday, December 3, 2017

Scene & Story - November 2017

Recently I attended a photo slideshow presented by Tim Ernst, an Arkansas nature photographer. For about twenty minutes you relax, listen to soothing music, and soak in the beauty of nature. The photographs were from his current photo book, Arkansas Beauty. Not only does he take amazing photographs, but after the presentation he has some great stories to tell about his adventures in the woods of Arkansas. Something he said this year stuck with me. He told us that if we don't get out there with our cameras, we're not going to take great pictures. So many of his photos were a result of being in the right place at the right time and then taking his time composing the shot. His words encouraged me to get out more at different times of the day. One morning I chose to go outside to watch the sunrise. It was worth the effort! The sun illuminating the clouds was breathtaking. It made me realize once again that even though I've lived here for over forty years, there are still new and beautiful things to see. I just need to get out there.

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If you would like to see a little bit of Arkansas Beauty,  just click right here.

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I'm linking with Scene & Story hosted
by Sarah and Lee.