I have been tagged by Eleanor of Thatchwick Cottage to show you five favorite things. You know, at first it sounded like an easy post to write, then again I am so easily led down Memory Lane that it was quite the challenge to keep my focus. First of all, I have so many favorites that it was hard to choose, and then the memories associated with each favorite led to many cups of tea and joyful reflection.
This beautiful stained glass piece was designed by my sister, Susan. I love it and it has stood the test of moving country four times. Susan is more than my sister, she is my friend and encourager. She is an amazing artist, painter, knitter, fiber artist, felter and artisan. She even had her own tea business where she make her own Angel Tea. Susan has most recently been creating new knitted designs which she calls Fiona Couture.
This lap quilt and matching pillow made by my sister Lynne lives on my favorite wing chair. Lynne is amazing at creating beautiful quilts, pillows, embroidery, and rugs. She is also a wonderful baker and has her own bakery called Bee Happy Bake Shoppe. Lynne is my sister and my good friend. That tin, next to my tea cup was filled to the brim at Christmas with Lynne's amazing brownies. The last pillow that she created for me was wrapped in a cake box...she wraps terrific too!
My friend Judy sent me this wonderful purse vase for a gift a few years ago. I love to fill this lovely vase with flowers. It is one of my cherished vases given to me by my cherished friend. She is always introducing me to wonderful things. Besides designing jewelry, she knits, crochets and makes wonderful purses too.
This teapot was given to me as a going away gift from my lovely friend Elizabeth Wu in Hong Kong. A dear friend who introduced me to so many wonderful things there. This is my favorite teapot not only because of the design but because I remember Elizabeth every time I see it. The double spouts are created for tea on one side and hot water on the other side to refresh your cup of tea. I have used it as a subject in many of my paintings.
On our first Christmas in Hong Kong my mom and I were so homesick it was painful. I remember food shopping in a store called Park n' Shop, and crying as they piped in the song "I'll Be Home For Christmas." My mom is a great support and in search of some western gifts, she found something special from a store called Seibu. She gave me this incredible Christmas chess set. To my amazement, I recently learned that this chess set has been retired and is a collector's item. The designer, Vaillancourt Studios just happens to have her studio in the same town where we board my daughter's horse.
I guess what was telling for me about this exercise, is that it isn't the actual item that makes it my favorite, but the people and places behind each treasure. That perhaps is the joy of collecting, because I love to collect memories. I find it no surprise that Eleanor tagged me. You see, Eleanor is from South Africa and has the most glorious home there, she reminds me of a lovely dream I once had...
A dream to have had a special life filled with adventure like the words in Isak Dinesen's memoir about her years in Africa reflect, "I had a farm in Africa, at the foot of the Ngong Hills." from Out of Africa.
Getting lost in the memories associated with some of my favorite things, made me realize that dream I had, has already come true. Each special treasure in my home reflects the many people and places that have touched my heart along life's wonderful journey. As this exercise gave me the opportunity to look around at my favorite things, I was reminded of how God has blessed my life with love and adventure.
Now, I have the fun of tagging these five people:
Susan of One Knit One Purl
Lynn from Life at Cedar Hill (Vintage Nest)
Tara of Days Missed on a Hammock
Kathy of Kathy's Cottage
Rhondi of Rose Colored Glasses
The song for this post is These Are a Few of My Favorite Things.