by Cindy on December 15, 2011

Thank you for stopping by after extended blog break!  I’m still here.  I was beginning to feel like a lurker – stopping by your blogs when I could but sometimes not leaving comments.  There’s so much going on in my life behind the scenes; something had to take the back burner and I know it was the best decision.  I found it is a relief to actually take a break – something I would not have dared to do in the past.  There’s that expectation to keep the momentum going and keep on blogging.  But as you may know, if I don’t have anything to blog about (or pictures to share more often than not!), then I keep a low profile. 🙂  But I decided not to wait another day to drop in – I’ve missed saying hello to the world, so here I am.    And here’s a bit of what I’ve been up to…

Any excuse to bake!  Nothing like making red and green M&M cookies.

Getting ready for the holidays.  The lights are up.  The tree is up.  There is so much more on our traditional to-do list though – cut-out sugar cookies, painting plaster village pieces, making a fruitcake, visiting the National Christmas Tree….. and don’t forget those cards.  Does anyone else send handwritten greetings anymore?  I like to – but I’m sadly behind schedule.

A highlight this month was our oldest son’s robotics competition –  his team made it to the FLL State Championships in Harrisonburg, VA.   It was so fun to see the many teams and their amazing robotic designs.  It was a weekend of intense competition from presentations and team challenges to matches in speed and skill.

Would it surprise you if I told you that I managed to find a FANTASTIC antique mall in the area??  Of course I did my research and I found that the largest (90,000 sq. foot) antique mall on the East Coast happened to be 25 minutes away!   The Factory Antique Mall is a destination that truly rivals my favorite antiques town in PA.  This mall just kept going, and going, and going…. and it was full of good stuff – not vintage junk, if you know what I mean.   It would be interesting to see how this mall functioned years ago as a coat factory.

I can’t help it.  I’ve always been drawn to vintage pups.  Especially those sweet Scotties.  One of these days I’ll show you one of my Scottie collections!

*sigh*   Two favorites together – an old spool cabinet and a pie safe – with a great paisley pattern.  We’ve been looking at pie safes since the year we were married way back in our days in Monterey.  We frequently recall the one that got away – you know, that piece that you should have bought and years later regret.  There was one we recall vividly (and I even took notes about it back when I actually carried a notebook while antiquing) made of walnut and a charming cut-out in the top drawer, likely made by a mouse.

We were lucky to find some special pieces this time around, our favorite being a beautiful old nativity.  In addition to the holy family,  there are 15 figurines made from chalkware, I believe – including a large camel.  It really was a good fortune to find this set the day it was put out by the vendor.  My husband likes to decorate for the holidays by first putting out our nativity set that he brought back from Israel, and telling the children the story of the birth of Jesus.

And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with fear. And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of a great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.”    ~Luke 2:9-12~


Thanks for stopping by and have a great rest of the week!

– Cindy


















{ 26 comments… read them below or add one }

Mary Harding December 15, 2011 at 5:09 am

Great to catch up with you Cindy. Love all your Holiday activities, the antique mall and the robotics. Your pics of the boys are so sweet. They look like they are having the best time. So great that you can give them the special one on one time and attend all their events. Have a Happy Holiday too.

Stefanie December 15, 2011 at 5:30 am

Cindy, it is so great to here from you. And your pics are gorgeous – as always. You and your son look so cute and happy together!

Barbara Lewis December 15, 2011 at 7:34 am

Cindy, Welcome back! I was going to send you an email today! Your blog post was wonderful!

Kathleen Lange Klik December 15, 2011 at 8:50 am

Welcome back! Sounds like you had wonderful reasons to step away for a bit. Congrats to you son’s team too, that must have been an exciting adventure for them!

LeAnn December 15, 2011 at 8:52 am

Good to hear from you! Your family life certainly keeps you busy and this time of year in particular. It’s lovely to hear about your family holiday traditions, especially the story telling of the birth of Jesus as you set up the nativity set. Happy holidays.

Michelle December 15, 2011 at 9:04 am

Sounds like you’ve had some great reasons to take a break from blogging. Congrats on your son’s accomplishment! You must be so proud. I have to say, I envy you whenever you blog about antiquing. It looks like you have the greatest places to go near you!! Have a very Merry Christmas!

Susan M (quiltingjewel) December 15, 2011 at 9:26 am

Great to see a post from you and all you are doing. Your kids are the cutest. One of my grandson’s has red hair so I am partial to redheads. Love the Antique place – just sent my husband an e-mail that I found a road trip for us after Christmas!! Looks like fun. I couldn’t believe you left those cute Scotties there! Have a Merry Christmas.

Renate December 15, 2011 at 10:22 am

So good to hear from you – and to know everything is well. You are right not to miss out on your family – these days will not return. Would have loved to come antiquing with you… sending hugs and romizous!!!

Erin Prais-Hintz December 15, 2011 at 10:42 am

So nice to see you! I love that picture of you baking. Looks like a magazine shoot! I have not baked one cookie, and have barely put out the tree. I have so much to do! I need a break for sure. Kudos to your son and his talented team. Way to go! And someday it would give me much pleasure to go antiquing with you, someone who knows her stuff and would be a great guide.
Enjoy the day, Miss Cindy! You are looking marvelous!

Sharon Misuraco December 15, 2011 at 11:19 am

You took a well-deserved break, but it’s great to see you again! Your photos always capture that one “Kodak moment” and tell a great story. Thanks for the glimpse into your life, we love it!

diane cook December 15, 2011 at 11:30 am

Yes, I have missed you here, but understand the choices we sometimes must make. I collect nativity scenes too, and love the fact that your husband takes yours out and tells the story of Jesus with your family. That is priceless, and one they will remember the rest of their lives….
And, the robotics competition WOW! brought me back to the days I participated in one competition after another…not as scientific as your eldests’ but intense just the same…in 4-H. My mother was our leader, so I participated in EVERYTHING =)
God bless my friend….glad you’re back =) xo

Kathy December 15, 2011 at 11:48 am

Oh Cindy! I wish I’d known you were in Harrisonburg!!! I only live about 15 minutes from there. I would have loved to meet up with you. Maybe you’ll come back again next year for the Lego League? Celebrating the “good news of great joy” along with you and your family!

Stacie December 15, 2011 at 1:05 pm

I am so, so jealous of that antique mall next to you…would have loved a long linger there! Hubs and I are getting ready to buy a house in the next year, going to try and ‘settle’ down a bit and I am chomping at the bit to go to antique malls and start my old fashioned nest…so glad you popped back online, but completely understand the need for a virtual break. I had one that lasted for about a year on and off…family obligations and immersion into something else is sometimes necessary to gain the energy for a renewed sense of purpose. Lovely to see you again…

Brandi December 15, 2011 at 1:29 pm

Sometimes you just need to step back! And with so much going on offline, it’s totally understandable why you needed a break. Good to see you back blogging!!

shirley moore December 15, 2011 at 1:44 pm

Yeah! Been missing you dear lady! Love the baking pics, and am so jealous of the Lego ones. I know that will sound funny to most people, but I’ve always wanted to have my sons participate in one, but never one around where we have lived. And as hard as it was, I knew I couldn’t take that on as well.
I also collect Nativity scenes, and just found a website that offers a beaded pattern for them! Wishing you the very best of Holiday cheer.

Tracy December 15, 2011 at 2:18 pm

Hi Cindy! Love the baking shot. I have been doing lots of that lately – although I definitely don’t look as good as you do when I bake! : ) That is so great for your son. We have been thinking about a robotics camp for my son this coming summer. Seems like such a great thing to be involved in. Are you going to Intergem tomorrow? I will be there right at the start. I have a big shopping list and silver prices are down! It would be great to see you.


Carolyn Mallin December 15, 2011 at 2:23 pm

I completely understand the need to step back and unplug for a while. I haven’t blogged for a year now. I’ll go back to it sometime I’m sure but I’ve had many other things taking precedence over my virtual world that I felt the need to back off for a bit.
Glad to hear what you’ve been up to. Doing wonderful things with your family is the best. Especially getting ready for Christmas and the traditions that go along with it. Your boys look to be getting so big.
The antique mall that you described sounds great. We have several antique shops here in Shelbyville that my granddaughter and I frequently browse through.
I want to wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas.

Christine Hansen December 15, 2011 at 3:21 pm

Glad to see you back in blog-land Cindy! Congrats to your son and his team for making the state championship – I bet that was a ton of fun for everyone!

Molly Alexander December 15, 2011 at 4:27 pm

It is so good to hear from you Cindy! It sounds like you have been keeping busy, and that your family is benefiting from your blog downtime. Have a wonderful rest of your week, and enjoy a relaxed weekend!

🙂 Molly

Lori Anderson December 15, 2011 at 8:45 pm

I can’t wait to go to that antique mall, and very cute with the mixer!

Sally Anderson December 15, 2011 at 9:24 pm

I’ve missed you but am happy you were doing such cool things. Love the cooking with kids (my girls are doing the same) and the robotics is (are?) really amazing. Best of all — that nativity scene you found. It’s really one of the nicest ones I’ve ever seen. Good score!
Merry Christmas, Cindy. Hope you all have a wonderful time.

Patti Vanderbloemen December 15, 2011 at 11:27 pm

I love to read about all of your family activities…you are such a good mom and I have said this before but I have to say it again….you have the CUTEST kids! Merry Christmas!

Erin December 16, 2011 at 12:25 am

Oh, sweet Cindy! So nice to hear from you. I did miss you, but of course, I completely understand the break. I take them often! LOL! And I don’t believe you’ve lost or missed out on anything by taking one. That first picture of you and your son baking is AMAZING! What a beautiful moment captured! I just love it. That pie safe is a real beauty. Did you buy it? The old nativity set reminds me so much of my grandmothers. I have fond, fond memories of setting it up and playing with it for hours and hours as a child. So nice that she let me play with it!

Alice December 16, 2011 at 11:36 am

I’ve missed reading your lovely, thoughtful posts, so I was glad to see this one pop up on my blog reader.

Thanks for taking us along on all your activities. That antique mall you discovered is amazing! All three of my kids at one time or other were involved in robotics. It was so fun to watch the competitions (and the kids). The photos of your boys are just wonderful.

Here’s wishing you and your family a blessed Christmas.

Cynthia@OrnamentalStyle December 16, 2011 at 12:48 pm

It looks like your time away was well spent. And your kids are so precious!

cat kerr December 16, 2011 at 11:53 pm

Sweet Cindy,I was so happy to see your name on my sidebar and as always you take us on a wonderful journey.I am so thrilled for your son and the Lego league…my son wants to do that but the club here starts in fifth grade and he’s in forth.I love the nativity set you found and more than anything I love that hubby shares the story of Jesus.
I Miss you friend.When you get some time…I know things are crazy..just left you a little message on my blog.Big Hugs,Cat

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