Saturday, December 19, 2015

Making Christmas in southern Rhode Island

Christmas 2015
Finally getting the candles in the windows for Christmas in Newport,  I found myself opening five tiny doors at once today on the advent calendar; remembering when there was lively discussion every morning here, as to just whose turn it was and there never were enough doors and windows to go around.

The tree is decorated, wearing rubber gloves, mind you, as this very pretty tree cut down last Saturday fresh off Union Street in Portsmouth, was covered in dried, but hardly dead, seven-minute itch. It's really fat and full, you just can't touch it!

We started looking way too late for our first artificial tree and found one at Home Depot that we both liked but it wasn't the right size for our space. So we decided to wait until next year. While the boys at the tree farm were more than accommodating, getting it through the front door and setting up is not something we are likely to repeat next year. After what will be forty-nine years, it's time to settle for Thyme's frasier fir candles and a tree in three parts that goes back in the box in January!

The paper whites are opening up right on time through no real planning, total luck, as it would happen. I purchased the bulbs two weeks before Thanksgiving at the Casino hardware store, planted five in each of two six inch containers, set them on some old white pebbles, covered them with some marbles, and watered just up to the bottom of the bulbs and haven't watered them since. All the while, the roses continue to bloom by the sunroom door as global warming confuses Rhode Island nature.

No amaryllis this year. I dutifully placed them in the downstairs fridge so they could cool for six weeks before I planted them as all the indoor gardening sites suggest. My mistake was zipping the zip lock bag, so they rotted with no air. If I try this again, will use a netted bag similar to the ones used for berries and grapes or simply cut some holes in the plastic.

I dragged out this little grapevine tree covered years ago with various ribbons and my mother's costume jewelry that triggered too many memories to throw away. But from this vantage point, am realizing the star is really too big, oh well, it still says Merry Christmas as you walk in the sunroom door.

All the wrapping is finished and under the forbidden tree. This weekend, we will be filling the larders for our family about to descend for Christmas in Newport from far and near; thank heavens there will be a few more windows and doors left - still to open.

Wishing one and all a wonderful holiday, safe travels, and soft landings.


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