Thursday, December 12, 2013

Kitchen Island Centerpiece

 It's been a Christmas shopping kind of day.  Weather was cold but sunny, so it wasn't too bad.  We have lots to do with the countdown getting serious.  We have a daughter and a son with a birthday on the 17th, (3 years apart, yeah that) and a grandson with a birthday on Christmas Eve, so there is Christmas shopping AND birthday shopping going on.   Gifts to be shipped.  Why am I down to the wire every year?  Oh, because it's me and that's what I do.  Some things never change.

Today, I thought I would share the decorations on the kitchen island and the top of the cabinets at the end of the kitchen.  I have these large mercury glass ornaments that I used to hang from the vaulted ceiling in our other house.  We don't have a vaulted ceiling here, but I love, love, love these big ornaments and knew I wanted to use them somewhere - somewhere where little hands wouldn't think they were balls to play with.  There is a large rusty pedestal bowl that I have had for years and I decided to put that in the center of the island and fill it with some of the ornaments.  Silly me.  It's not the little ones that turned out to the the issue.  They can't reach them.  It was the 10 year old.

We have ceramic tile floors in the kitchen and dining area and anything glass is a gonner if it's dropped.  Instantly.  Last week I broke a vintage milk glass dish that was given to me 40 years ago by a sweet neighbor.  It had Christmas cookies on it and she told me to keep the dish which had been hers for years.  The next day, Dan dropped a vintage mixing bowl that had been my mother's.  Gone.  Bye bye. Sadness.  I know it's just stuff, but they were memories.

Here is how the island looks.

It's really, really pretty.  I used the big bowl and put some of my free Christmas greens in it, then filled it with the mercury glass balls.  The base of the bowl is surrounded by large acrylic ornaments just in case little hands should get one.  They won't break on the floor.  There are mercury glass candle holders holding the taper candles and tall glass candle holders and red votives holding lots of tea lights.  It's beautiful when they are all lit at night.

Back to the 10 year old.  Saturday, we were expecting freezing rain in the evening, so all the local family came over for lunch.  I was busy getting everything ready, turned around and the 10 year old was lifting the large gold mercury glass ornament out of the bowl.  HOLY COW!  Grandma almost fainted.  This is when you have to stay calm.  Hopefully.  I quickly sidled up to H and said, ummm, please don't pick that up.  It's glass.  If you drop it, it will shatter.

I know it's bright and shiny and looked like it would be lots of fun to toss in the air.  Bless his heart.  He looked at me with complete innocence and said, oh, I thought it was plastic.  Disaster averted (this time).  I rearranged the bowl and hopefully, everything will stay where it is.  Whew.  Five grandsons can be a challenge.  The New York grandson isn't here, otherwise it would be 6 under 10.  They are 10, 7, 6, 3 & 3/4, 3 & 1/2, and 2 & 3/4.  They are busy little fellas let me tell you.  They keep Grandma and Pawpaw hopping, but they are so much fun to have around.  We had a great time at lunch.
I know the temptation is great, but Grandma will prevail.   (Most of the time)

The cabinets at the end of the kitchen hold the other large, red, mercury ball.  I put it in an old wooden box that my daughter gave me years ago.  I filled it with greenery, laid the ornament in the box and tied some ribbon on the hanger.
Oh, it's so pretty.  The red and gold ornaments are 10" in diameter.  They are not little.  That would be a lot of glass on the floor don't you know!

Doesn't it look gorgeous?  I keep little lights on top of the cabinets all the time to brighten up the area.  They make the ornament glow.

Next to the big rooster are three old Ball jars that I filled with rock salt and some old bottle brush trees.  Two of the jars were gifts from our youngest son.  He knows how much I like them.  The lights shining  through the jars are so festive.  Looks like down home Christmas doesn't it?

Simple arrangements can be very effective, easy to make,  and so beautiful.  I am a floral designer by training, but I like the natural look more than a formal arrangement most of the time.

Use what you have and look at it with new eyes.  Simple greens, some ornaments, and pine cones can be beautiful.  Think of new and different ways to combine and use the decorations you have without spending extra money.  It's challenging, but lots of fun to come up with new looks.

This arrangement makes me smile every time I look at it.  The bowl had been in the attic.  It was a natural to use for this centerpiece.  It took about 5 minutes to put it together.  Then, I just wove a little burlap ribbon across the table runner that I purchased last year and added all the candles and ornaments.  Easy peasy.

Hope this inspires you to try something new and different.  You will be amazed at the way something this simple can change a room.  Start looking around!  Make some changes.  Go!

Everyday Donna

Things to Remember:

Deck the Halls with boughs of holly, fa la la la la, la la la la.
 Tis the season to be jolly, fa la la la la, la la la la.