Sunday, February 24, 2013

Winter's Still Here

Hi everyone!  What's the weather like where you are tonight?  Thursday nights and Fridays seem to be our days for getting wintry weather this year.  Right on schedule, we got sleet and freezing rain Thursday night and into Friday morning.  It was cold and dreary, so my husband decided to brighten things up a bit.

This was the first fire we've had in our fireplace this winter, and it was so cheerful and cozy.  We all enjoyed it.  :-D

I'm already looking towards spring, but I really try not to rush the seasons.  Life goes by much too fast these days without me wishing the time away.  So we're trying to make the best of the cold, gray days whenever we can.  Friday night we had a pot of homemade chili, a skillet of homemade cornbread, and a fire in the fireplace.

Speaking of the fireplace, I thought I would show you our "winter" mantel.  You've seen our fall fireplace...

 and our Christmas fireplace.

Now I realize this is not, as they say in the fashion world, "What the well-dressed fireplace is wearing this season."  :)  You only have to look in the magazines and the most popular blogs to see what I mean.  But, when you have a fireplace from the seventies, you have to work with it as best you can.  If we end up staying in this house, I would love to replace this mantel with a nicer one, and have the fireplace framed out in some decorative stained molding.  That would add such a classic look, but we'll have to see what the future holds.

In the meantime, this is what will stay on the mantel until spring...

I love pottery, and I think it is always a classic.  The nutcrackers are my touch of whimsy.  Yes, I do like nutcrackers in the winter; I think they look cheerful on the mantel.  These are not the same fellows I have on the mantel at Christmas; these come out after the Christmas nutcrackers are put away.

I especially wanted you to see this fellow, since I've been writing about feeding our backyard birds.  Isn't he cute?!  I just love his array of colorful bird houses.  :)

This is our German wine maker.  His leather apron reads "Im Wein liegt die Wahrheit," or "In wine lies the truth."  :)  Both of these nutcrackers were Christmas gifts from my mother-in-law.

I've always used pottery in our home because we have a community of potters here in North Carolina in the town of Seagrove, which is only about an hour's drive from where we live.  I've been visiting there off and on during the twenty-five years of our marriage.  This tankard came from Westmoore Pottery in Seagrove.  I love to go in this shop; it's like stepping into a historic building in colonial America or old Europe.



These are pictures of Westmoore Pottery that I found on their website.  You can read more about them Here.  They specialize in historic style pottery and glazes, and have even provided pottery pieces for historically-based movies.

Salt-glazed pottery pieces are my very favorites.

This mug is made by Rowe Pottery in Wisconsin.  The pattern is called "Provincial."  They sell these at my favorite local gift shop, and I've been admiring them for years. I finally bought two pieces with some of my Christmas money.

  This piece is the Provincial porringer.

...A cowbell from the German shop in Epcot Center at Disneyworld.  I thought it would look cheerful hanging on our fireplace.  My in-laws traveled to Austria many years ago, and they said that in the countryside, you could hear the sound of those pretty cowbells floating across the fields.  One of my great travel wishes is to visit the alpine country in Switzerland or Austria.

Two watercolors by local artists hang next to the fireplace.

...along with some candles and a snuffer.

The print above the mantel is a scene of Old Salem, North Carolina, which I've written about several times.

A wood fire is cozy and warm, and I love the cheerful popping and crackling sound the flames make.  The big drawback is that they're messy.  I always hate cleaning the fireplace in the spring because it takes forever to get it really clean.  The glass doors have to be cleaned at least twice inside and out in order to get all the haze from the smoke cleaned away.

Do you have a fireplace in your home?  Is yours a wood-burning or a gas fireplace?

Thank you for your visit today!  I'm joining:
The Tablescaper for Seasonal Sundays
Between Naps on the Porch for Metamorphosis Monday
A Stroll Thru Life for Table Top Tuesday



  1. Hi Denise. Your fireplace looks so inviting. I'm with you about the crackling of the fire. We have a gas stove (fireplace)in our sitting room and in our bedroom. I miss the sounds but, yes, they are alot cleaner. Love your pottery. I have quite a few pieces of Wisconsin pottery that I have collected over the years. All by mail order though, so have never seen such a cute shop as you have near you..Happy Weekend..Judy

  2. That fire looks so warm and inviting, Denise. Snuggled up on the couch having some chili, mmmmmmm. The pottery store looks like a beatiful place, would love to look around there some time. xo

  3. Nothing cozier than a roaring fire and I love your brick fireplace! I also love the fun, happy colors in your nutcrackers-enjoy:@)

  4. I love your warm, cozy fireplace, Denise! When we lived in Ohio, we put in put in two wood burning stoves. In Michigan, we put in a wood burning stove, too. However, here in Texas, we have a gas burning stove. Your pottery is so pretty and I would love to visit the shop. I love your nutcrackers, too!! Thanks for showing us around your lovely home.

  5. Can I come sit by your fire? Your fireplace looks so cozy as does your winter mantel. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Your fireplace is like mine and I wonder if we live in similar houses, maybe even the same builder here in NC? You never know. We did make some changes to it last year, inspired by bloggers' advice! Really. It certainly has been deary weather here. I have some similar pottery but from Williamsburg.

  7. Love your fire you have going! I so miss our real FP we had in our last home. We have wood burning here, but gas logs, and to tell you the truth, we never use!! And I hate them - really hate the gas logs. Lovely things on your mantel. It's always nice to change things up!
    I hope you'll drop by to see My Daughter's Master Bath Redo - #83 at Met Monday.


  8. What a lovely warm welcome to your blog Denise! I feel warmer already.
    Great mantles too. We used to have an open fire but moved to gas when it eventually arrived in our village. I doubt if it's been burned more than 50 hours in total over the last 17 years (other than when it's serviced each year) as the heating is enough to keep warm by. We have discussed having a log-burner though as I really miss how cosy it used to be.
    Have a great week - stay warm and well!
    Rose H

  9. Hi the fireplace with al of those wonderful collectibles...I have collected Rowe Pottery for quite some time...I did not know they were still producing pottery...I have really gain a fondness for NC pottery and Seagrove is such a great place to see the wonderful pottery of NC artisans...We have 2 gas fireplaces...but truthfully, I wish I had a combo wood/gas be able to choose the convenience of gas or the lovely smell and sounds of the wood burning...

  10. Your fire is cozy and cheerful and your supper sounds perfect for a cold and icy night. Would love to have a hot piece of cornbread! I like you love a fire but understand and feel the same way you do that it is messy and takes work.

    I love your winter mantel. Your nutcracker collection is impressive. They really have personality. I am afraid my mantel stays the same all year except at Christmas. I should try to turn over a new leaf.

    Your pottery pieces make a special statement and that you bought several pieces recently with your Christmas money tells me you really enjoy them. The workmanship and talent is so evident. Great that you have such good pottery shops nearby.
    Collecting pottery could get expensive! I always enjoy your posts and learn something from each post.

    It is supposed to stop raining by tomorrow. YEAH!!!!!! We are water logged and NEED some sunlight for our HEALTH!

  11. No better way to do it either unless he makes the coffee and the muffins!

  12. I DO have a fireplace, and we don't use it as intended often enough. Honestly, we don't usually have much for cold weather. This year has been an exception, but we've been to tuckered out to enjoy a fire. We just hit the hay.

    I love your mantel, no matter what the supposed best dressed mantels are wearing this season. (You make me laugh!) In fact, you make me want to go in the living room and play with my mantel now.

  13. I love how you savor each season - too many people don't appreciate the coziness of winter! Your home looks warm and lovely, and I think your fur baby is adorable! Hope you can stop by the enchanted oven to say hi.

  14. Must be because it's cold that I just want to curl up next to the fireplace. Love the mantel vignette too. Thanks tons for joining TTT. Hugs, Marty

  15. I just love Seagrove. I went a few years back in search of DirtWorks Pottery. i bought my first piece from them at the Southern Christmas Show. My dad, my papaw and my niece went with me and we had a great time. And then this past Christmas I bought 2 more pottery mugs from them at the Christmas Show. They match and one is small. Just perfect for Tristan to have hot chocolate. I'd love to visit again and check out Westmoore Pottery. It looks like a neat place.

  16. Love your fireplace. I don't have one and I really wish I did. I did however purchase a electric/heater fireplace that I put into my little den and I love to be snuggled with a throw, with the fireplace on and watching TV. However it really doesn't get below 45 here in So CA., just chilly at night.
    Love all you nutcrackers they look great.
    I'm a new follower and have enjoyed your blog.

  17. Hi Denise...popping over from 21 Rosemary Lane to check out your new looks wonderful!!! So happy the tutorial was of some help to you. I had to chuckle because we too have a 1970's house and fireplace so I feel your pain with rgard to the mantel. Our original mantel was nothing more than a thin piece of board. I wanted something more substantial so just this week my hubby is finishing up our new mantel and surround for the fireplace. Will be revealing it by the week's end.
    Have a great day and enjoy your beautiful fireplace!
    XO Barbara

  18. Such a cozy photo! We have been lucky that the weekends tend to be a bit better than the weekdays - but we had snow flurries all last weekend. Missing our American football to go with our fires though :) Hope you are staying warm :)

  19. I love the photos:))What's the weather? Well, I am in the Czech Republic, it snowed at the weekend, but it seems not to be good weather now. It rained too and the temperature is getting higher, so I am afraid that the snow will be gone soon ://

  20. Beautiful photos, your mantel look perfect. You are right about not rushing the seasons. I do find myself wishing Spring would come quickly. Guess I am really not a winter person. We are one degree above freezing so we are getting some rain now on top of the snow. Think I'll just stay in. Also loved the pic of your fire, I certainly wouldn't mind sitting in front of it for a while. Take care.

  21. Hi I just found you lovely Blog, the fire looks nice and warm. It's in the 30C at the moment.

  22. Your home looks perfectly cozy for winter.

    Wonderful to have you at Seasonal Sundays.

    - The Tablescaper

  23. Hi Denise, I know I already commented on this post, but I was just visiting Barbara at 21 Rosemary Lane and I noticed that you left a comment about following her instructions for making a new header at PicMonkey. It looks very good BTW. I followed them too and I got all the way to adding them onto my blog and then it all fell apart. She said that if I added a gadget under my old blog header I could just flip them and then delete the old one. I tried that but it just puts the new one AND the old one on at the same time. Do you have to delete the old one before you can put the new one in it's place? It's been driving me crazy..Thanks in advance..Happy Wednesday..Judy



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