For me, nothing says wintertime coziness like the colors of Scandinavia. It's something I love about visiting my aunt's house. This year, after a cup of tea and some good conversation, I explored a bit with camera in hand, documenting some of the lovely nooks and crannies:
This is one of my favorite spots in the house -- her sideboard, which is always an enchanting menagerie of woodland animals, gnomes, santas, and other bits of whimsy (like teeny pigs):
My all-time favorite Christmas lights:
I was pretty smitten with these felt gnome ornaments when I spotted them at IKEA. Totally something one could make by hand .... ah, maybe when I retire....
Our decorations have not come down yet. The living room feels abandoned -- a neglected tree, the smell of ash in the fireplace, junk mail stacked by the door; a snapshot of what our lives look like when I'm preparing for class each night between dinner and bedtime. It's funny how I will look upon that room and the little things that need to be done with such longing. I'm suddenly drawn to cleaning out the fireplace in the same way I might be to reading a really good book. Thankfully I didn't let procrastination get the better of me this week. The closest thing was a few episodes of Bramwell when I needed help turning my mind off. Cleaning is a reward saved for the weekend. :-)