Thursday, December 28, 2006

A few of my favorite things

Checking in between holidays here is a task. But it's one that's allowed me time to comtemplate what a beautiful Christmas we had. In anticipation of a post Christmas post I thought of all the gifts I both gave and received that I wanted to share with you. It felt insufficient somehow, though, to let that speak for what it was like here. I couldn't sum up the beauty of our time together with photos of things. Of course, also it's really impossible to photograph the feelings or thoughts I had throughout these past several days. Visuals win. But. It only scrapes the surface of our fun.

So if I had to choose some favorites that I was personally spoiled with it's the items above. Someone knows me well. Also my mom treated me to being an absolute brat by splurging on this. I don't even know what I'm gonna bake first, I just wanna stare at it against my turquoise kitchen wall for awhile. She also got Juliana her very first, very own sewing machine, and I topped the gift with a pile of fanciful fabrics.

Some of the funnier moments definitely were in our family conquering of the gingerbread house. We were too late in getting to Costco in time to get the kit at the advice of both my neighbor and Heather. They were gone when we got there. Somehow we decided we could build a Rice Krispie house. It started out great, I even bricked and mortered a gorgeous chimney out of twizzler bits. The kids made a darling sidewalk lined with lollipop street lamps. We decided we should let it harden more before we put on the roof. We came back to find it bending all wurvy-curvy. We laughed and cried and we ate lots of Rice Krispies for many days.

Not one to be defeated, Juliana found a homemade recipe for real gingerbread and dug in. Boy, that was a two day process. We even had a plastic army guy battle in the snow(flour). We ended up with family self-portrait cookies, and a big gorgeous house constructed with homemade Royal icing that dried hard as a rock! And I completely forgot to take a picture before the kid wrecking ball hit it. mmmm. Stale and sweet, and they didn't seem to mind a bit.

We made a game room for the kids in an unused room off the garage, I'll share a look at that soon. Keeping it a secret has been quite an adventure. But suffice it to say, Nicolas, who has the habit of being hard to please, informed me that we "don't ever have to buy him another present ever again". It was a good one, I guess.

I have really resisted walking into the studio at all this week. I've had a nice break and a chance at some of those bigger picture thoughts with my work. I can't see through the fog of everyday tasks sometimes, and lose sight of what I'm trying to accomplish. What got me inspired to come in here today was needing to get up these framed drawings from my first college drawing class. That put me back together again after settling into a homebody the past week. I've got a lot to look forward to in 2007. This little homage to things past on my studio wall is helping me look forward.

So just a few more days to enjoy the extra glow of sparkle and cheer in our house before we box it up. Then we'll be back to our everyday energy of busy-ness here. We'll be fortified though with some extra sugar, extra giggles, extra cuddles and of course some new toys and amusements here and there.

Enjoy the last bit of this year. And a very Happy New Year to you, thanks for giving me such a welcome and friendly place to share. You are all so cool!

xoxo, Anna Maria


  1. Anonymous5:22 PM

    ok Anna Maria! Not fair you got the gorgeous floral sweater from Anthropologie that I just spied!!! Lucky Lady! Aren't we all very well loved and spoiled! Gorgeous photos once again! Happy New Year!

  2. Anonymous9:06 PM

    Hi there, Have just come accross your blog and have spent WAY too long browsing. I love it all and it looks like you had a fabulous Christmas. I think I will be spending a bit more time here =)

  3. Lovely post Anna Maria! Happy Holidays!

  4. Anonymous4:05 AM

    Love the photos as always. You have such a beautiful house and what lovely gifts to put in it. If your Mum fancies adopting another child then just let me know!! I look forward to seeing your lovely baking. Happy New Year!!

  5. Anonymous7:09 AM

    Truly delightful gifts you received Anna! Love them ~ the yummiest colors too! How fun is this... more pictures of your incredible home! Yea for us!
    Loved seeing them and reading about your special Christmas!

  6. Anonymous8:07 AM

    Oooh, all kinds of goodies! New sewing machines, stand mixers, what fun! Of course, it's not about the things, and it sounds like you all had a great holiday!

    P.S. I just got a big pile of Bohemian fabric in the mail. Yippee! It's so pretty that I don't know what to do with it!

  7. What I'd like to know is did you take photos of the self portrait cookies before they got eaten? Self portraits have been our thing for the past couple years. We drew them one year and this year was photos. I love the idea of cookies, I'll be saving it for next year. It sounds like you had a lovely time. It is hard to express the moments, isn't it?

  8. I'm glad the images won! Such beautiful colors! Lovely, lovely! Looking forward to the new year!

  9. Anonymous3:34 PM

    Oh, that mango mixer is the best --and it is going to look awesome in your gorgeous kitchen! Sounds like you had a wonderful Christmas with your family!

  10. Love the drawings over the bed, the pillows on the bed....and that beeyoutiful pink living room. Your blog is wonderful.

  11. Anna Maria,

    I am finding your site such an inspiration. The fact that you have 5 children just like me and still are able to do so much, is really encouraging. Unfortunately I live in a country the possiblities for marketing arts and crafts are far from what you have in yours. BTW, I just took time to read your interview on Another Girl at PLay and I would really love to "see" your studio one day when you have time to show us some pictures of it (unless you have done so and I missed it). God bless!

    Natalija from Serbia

  12. Anonymous2:25 PM

    It sounds like you have had a wonderful week - yay! Your house is so beautiful, by the way. The many colors that you've chosen for the walls make me green with envy. :0) I can't wait to see the playroom!

    Happy New Year!

  13. I LOVE your kitchen, I am a new reader of the Anna Maria blog and now giggle to myself when I see your stuff out and about while I'm shopping.
    Thank you for inspiring the crafty in all of us and sharing your sense of color and style. I have been pushed to create because of reading your posts. So thank you!

  14. Thank you very very much ..

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