To me, a good friend is one who lifts you up, inspires you, makes you laugh, makes you think, is kind and supportive, asks, listens, shares, embraces life and sees the beauty and joy in the smallest things.
Yesterday I spent the better part of the day with two dear friends, Jennie and Sylvia, and it was one of those sparkling days where everything is lovely, delicious and aesthetically beautiful. You know those times when the teensiest of details make the day shine?
We shared tea and coffee and festive treats (speculaas, chocolate gingerbread, pfeffernuse and my mother's Christmas cake) and lots of giggles and oohs and ahhs, opening gifts and perusing Christmas decorations, sharing traditions and memories and hilarious stories.
Both intensely talented seamstresses and crafters and bakers, I was spoiled with my beautiful gifts and home-baked treats from Sylvia, not to mention yet another dozen home-grown eggs from Jennie's chickens.
Below, you will see Jennie in her Little Tiendra dress, cooing over Sylvia's amazing baked goodies--traditional speculaas cookies and fruit mince pies that make your eyes roll in your head with bliss.
It was also fun to unearth treasures--above you'll see the cookie moulds I picked up in Brugge in January. I caught Jennie mentally stuffing them into her handbag.
After tea, we headed off to the Bredbo Christmas Barn. Yes, I was a Bredbo Barn virgin and yes, I uttered those immortal words 'Oh My God' as I entered those doors.
I must admit, I had been a little skeptical about The Barn--imagining great swathes of countrified, daggy, dated paraphernalia--and yes, there was lots of that there! but there was also an impressive array of simply stunning wares, including this candy-themed section--a Willy Wonka of delight.
The pine cones and feather wreaths, the mercury glass and silver, the beglittered hot pink poinsettia stems, gold-dipped peacocks and glass balloons had me in a merry spin, as did the Nordic blue-and-white, blonde wood villages and anything in the shape of a deer.
But of course it was the Christmas-themed children's books that sucked me in, and I left with four of them (there were dozens but I already have them all!), along with a clutch of silver decadence, including curling silvery feathers and silver-dipped pine cones--so weighty in the hand and simply stunning.
When I got home, I also had a chance to coo over my beautiful gifts from Sylvia ...
And these gorgeous earrings from Jennie, along with a universe of spinning honeycomb orbs. Oh, she knows my obsessions!
And here is the feathered wreath that had me, quite literally, weak at the knees when knee-deep in Christmas glitz. Amazing how the most humble of items can shine, even in a forest of glitter.
Every year, my kids gift each other an ornament on Christmas Eve, and this year it's another two in the Aussie animal brush collection that's beyond kitsch and straight to the heart. Here are the two latest acquisitions (above) with a vial of mega large glitter. I'm planning to add this to the snow globes I'm making--pics of those soon.
Have you bought any new ornaments this season?