The History of the Nutcracker

by Molly Jo Realy @MollyJoRealy

It’s no secret I love nutcrackers. The music. The dolls. The ballet. The magic.

My collection ranges from a Steinbach wine maker nutcracker to a two-foot tall soldier guarding my fireplace to a two-inch tall onlooker at my work desk. With over fifty to date, I’ve yet to meet a nutcracker I haven’t liked. The diversity of their characteristics and embellishments are delightful.

My fascination grew from my love of the ballet. The classical music, the dance, Mikhail Baryshnikov.

Many years ago during one of my stints of unemployment, I happened upon a wonderful collection … read the rest. . .

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Five Things Friday: Favorite Christmas Movies

by Molly Jo Realy @MollyJoRealy

I love this time of year. [I say that a lot, don’t I?] Well, I do. The cool temps, the furry sock, the fur-family snuggling up like socks. It’s just so many kinds of wonderful.

One of the reasons I love it is I don’t get strange looks when someone says, “So, whadya do last night?” and I reply with, “I watched some Christmas program.” Yeah. They tend to frown on that in June through August. [Although they shouldn’t. Just sayin’.]

On average, I watch more Christmas shows than, well, average. Oh! Oh! *waves hand … read the rest. . .

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Inexpensive Holiday Decorating at Bedford Manor

by Molly Jo Realy @MollyJoRealy

Y’all know how I feel about Christmas, right? That glorious holiday spirit. The season of making and baking, crafting and giving. Simply wonderful.

In the past few years, I’ve strayed from decorating every inch of Bedford Manor. I mean, it’s just me and the cats here, and I doubt they care how many stockings are hung unless they’re filled with catnip and toys.

Instead, I set up a few inexpensive decorations the week of Thanksgiving, and let them stay up until after New Year’s. They’re easy, quick, and I don’t feel like I’m drowning in … read the rest. . .

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Recipe: Doo-Dads

by Molly Jo Realy @MollyJoRealy

[Edited from original post, December 11, 2011.]

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas.
And this is what it looks like in my house:

See that salty good mix? This is my version of the original Chex Party Mix. I’ve always known it as “Doo-Dads”. Others call it “Nuts and Bolts.” Still others, just “Snack Mix.”

A little this, a little that. How could y’all not want some Doo-Dads?

You can deck the halls all you want, but in my house it’s not The Season until the Doo-Dads are made.

I pretty much live … read the rest. . .

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Five Things Friday: Reasons to Love October

by Molly Jo Realy @MollyJoRealy

Y’all may have picked up on this month’s theme: Autumn. Go figure. But, for realz. What, I’m gonna blog about the Easter Bunny? Nah. Not for at least six weeks.

As soon as the calendar turns to October, I turn to Fall. Even in the SoCal desert with it’s almost-80-degree temperatures and you-call-that-a-yard?-dirt, there’s something quite lovely about it all. Scarves come out, Pumpkin Spice Lattes are everywhere. It’s as if the Pumpkin Grinch himself dusted everything with pumpkin seed glitter.

I could go on and on, but since this is just a fiveread the rest. . .

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