Come right on in girls… and make yourself ‘t home!
Check out the new digs, my sweeties, and feel free to look in every nook and corner. The kids have spiffed up their rooms and I’ve pulled some old treasures out of the attic that I’d forgotten I even had. And seriously, take a look at those new kitchen cupboards!
Sooooo….. what d’ya think?? Pretty snazzy, huh?
I must say I’m rather fancying myself as the hostess with the most-est this morning. Yes, I’m rather reminding myself of a Grace Livingston Hill heroine, and we all know there is no hostess, no homemaker who can compare to the heroine of a GLH novel. Oh yeah.
Case in point: the lovely Daryl and her dear Mother from The Substitute Guest which just so happens to be my personal fave GLH novel.
“As the morning went on the kitchen began to take on the air of being ready to feed a hungry army. Crisp brown loaves of bread were cooling across their iron pans, pies in a fragrant row stood on a broad shelf by the window, and the turkey full to bursting, was just getting its waistcoat buttoned across its breast.
“The hardest things are done now,” said Daryl, as she measured out the sugar for the cranberries.
“Yes,” said her mother with satisfaction. “I’m glad I made the fruit cake several weeks ago. It’s always nice to use between times during the holidays. I think we have plenty so that the work can be kept at a minimum while our guests are here. And the lunch is all ready as soon as our men get home.” She looked complacently toward the kettle of old-fashioned bean soup on the back of the range, getting itself cooked without fuss or trouble to anybody. “The soup with bread and butter and applesauce and coffee will be all we’ll need. And for dinner tonight there will be the scalloped oysters. I can whip those together while you are talking with the guests and pop them in the oven with the potatoes to bake. We want everything to move along as if there were no such thing as work to be done, don’t we?”
“Oh Mother! You’re simply great!” said Daryl, casting a loving look at her. “It’s such fun to be having a real house party. And it’s going to be so much nicer than any of the city house parties because we have your cooking and a real home!”
Now in case you don’t have your own copy of the book handy, let me spell this all out for ya… the two gals prepared a hearty farm breakfast for their menfolk, cleaned up after same, then made “packets of sandwiches” for the guys to take on their way. They then proceeded to fry up doughnuts, made bread, both pumpkin and mince pies, bean soup, polished all the family silver, and prepped all of the holiday table linens. They made stuffing from homemade bread and butter from their own cow fer cryin’ out loud. Then they stuffed the turkey …all in the space of a couple of hours. And with sufficient leisure for Daryl to “drop into the living room for a minute to ripple out some notes on the piano, or trill a bit of a song.”
Thank goodness Mother made the fruit cakes ahead of time,
that’s all I have to say.
Anyhoo, because the best parties always have gifts, and because I couldn’t help noticing that Daryl and Mother’s party was conspicuously lacking in gifts, and because I secretly long to outdo them in the hostess dept, but mostly because you girls are the best-est, most darling-est readers a little old blogger could ever hope for…
seriously, Gretchen couldn’t get over how sweet and chatty you all are.
Anyhoo, because of all that, I have a little gift for you, or at least for one of you. I’ll be sending out my very own cherished copy of “The Substitute Guest” (complete with penciled margin notes by Joanna Smith, this copy’s original owner.) And to help with your very own holiday “house party” I’m tucking in these vintage Christmas table linens: a luncheon set of tablecloth and matching napkins. Just cuz I love ya. Mhhmm.
And won’t you leave me with a little gift before you click on outta here? I’d so love to hear your family’s favorite holiday tradition, or your oddest tradition, or maybe even a tradition that you wish your family had… so yeah. Tell me all about it! In the comments. And on Wednesday morning, I’ll use random number generator to determine which one of you lovelies to bustle this package of vintage goodies off to.
May the sweetest gal win.
Note: this give away is now closed… but feel free to share your family’s holiday tradition. We can never have too many of those!