On The Vintage Trail in Vermont

Every once-in-a-while, my friend Cathrine and I set off on an adventure. We go ‘antiquing’… peppered here and there with coffee stops and fine dining. It’s so much fun!!

New England is teeming with antique shops… ranging from cute little curated vintage stores to barns full of ‘old junk’. We find treasures galore. So many that we are dreaming of opening our own antique store… ha ha… we laugh at the prospect of going shopping in antique shops to stock our own antique shop. But what is one to do with all the treasure one finds?

Our last adventure took us to Vermont on a gorgeously sunny summers day.

I showed restraint and came home with a pair a wonderful baroque candlesticks, adorned with birds and leaves and strawberries. I’ll show you a photo of them when I find the right spot for them in my home. And also the coolest wooden bread bowl (I have a penchant for these!). You can see it in the third photo… it’s the 4th bowl in the stack, with the rounded edges. It’s these rounded edges I love… so unusual in a vintage wooden bread bowl. Catherine filled my car with flowers in vintage cans and our trip home was so wonderfully fragrant.

My only regret is leaving behind the big vintage butterfly print. In fact, I’m saving up my pocket money to go back in August and claim her… she better be there!

Look at all the glorious goodies to be found…

The Vintage Trail :: Vermont The Vintage Trail :: VermontAntique wooden bowls ::The Vintage Trail :: Vermont Antique Prints :: The Vintage Trail :: Vermont Antique Tea Cups :: The Vintage Trail :: Vermont Antique Lace Embroidery :: The Vintage Trail :: Vermont Antique Butterfly Embroidery :: The Vintage Trail :: Vermont Antique Cross Stitch Embroidery :: The Vintage Trail :: VermontThe Vintage Trail :: Vermont The Vintage Trail :: Vermont The Vintage Trail :: Vermont Antique Shop Finds :: The Vintage Trail :: Vermont Antique Garden Accessories Antique Chicken Painting :: The Vintage Trail :: Vermont Antique Linnens :: The Vintage Trail :: Vermont The Vintage Trail :: Vermont Antique Lace :: The Vintage Trail :: Vermont Antique Bone China :: The Vintage Trail :: Vermont Antique Teracotta Flowers :: The Vintage Trail :: Vermont The Vintage Trail :: Vermont The Vintage Trail :: Vermont

I can’t wait for our next outing. Cathrine, lets go soon!

Blessings and magic,

Donni

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Berry Picking :: Summer Fun in New England

Kitty and I had the most magical day picking blueberries together. We picked A LOT! Two buckets full of the sweetest berries ever. And, they were HUGE!

We are loving creating new family traditions as we navigate these New England seasons. This land is bountiful and so full of gifts.

When we asked our friends where we should go berry picking, the overwhelming consensus was Monadnock Berries in the small town of Troy. As soon as we came to the berry farm, at the end of a loooooong and winding country road, we knew exactly why this berry farm was a firm New England favorite. It is BEAUTIFUL there! The old yellow farmhouse loverlooks rolling fields of blueberry bushes and, looming majestically in front, is the magnificent Mount Monadnock.

The berry bushes were laden with fruit and we worked tirelessly, picking delicious berries. We ate some too. We just couldn’t help it! And we joked that they should have weighed us going in and then again coming out!

And we sat for a long time together, gazing out over the breathtaking scenery in the warm, thick air. We agreed that love this place, so much. And we marveled at how the Universe drew us here.

 

Picking Blueberries at Monadnock Berries, New Hampshire 9Picking Blueberries at Monadnock Berries, New Hampshire 7Picking Blueberries at Monadnock Berries, New Hampshire 10Picking Blueberries at Monadnock Berries, New Hampshire 6Picking Blueberries at Monadnock Berries, New Hampshire 3Picking Blueberries at Monadnock Berries, New Hampshire 11Picking Blueberries at Monadnock Berries, New Hampshire Picking Blueberries at Monadnock Berries, New Hampshire 2Picking Blueberries at Monadnock Berries, New Hampshire 8Picking Blueberries at Monadnock Berries, New Hampshire 5 Picking Blueberries at Monadnock Berries, New Hampshire 4Picking Blueberries at Monadnock Berries, New Hampshire 13

 

So, if you want to go berry picking in New England, we suggest Monadnock Berries, near Keene, New Hampshire.

Blessings and magic,

Donni

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An Ode to Summer in New Hampshire

My heart is full to bursting

This land

This beauty that we have chosen

This life that chose us.

 

Blooming, sparkling, lush

Teaming with growth

Wisdom

fertile with freedom.

 

I sink my hands into the loamy soil

Listen to the heavy raindrops

The birds that sing

The air that is thick with possibility.

 

And I thank you, Universe

For bringing us here

To this land of infinite magnificence

And that we trusted.

 

 

Hello my friends. How are you? I know it’s been a long time. I have been busy with the full richness of this new life. It has filled my soul to bursting and I feel so grateful for having landed in the magical land.

We are thriving. Growing in ways we could never have anticipated. All four of us. Together and yet separate. We have each nestled our bare feet into this glorious earth and have sent our roots down into the soil… tentatively at first but now voraciously, with confidence and desire to become part of this glorious place. We have reveled in the wondrous beauty that surrounds us, bathed in early morning birdsong, gasped at lightening that flashes across the magnificent horizon.

Our days, like our hearts, are full. And we are happy.

 

Kitty went away on a 2 week horse camp. 14 Days of horses, non stop. She came home saying that it was the best two weeks of her entire life. I can see it in the sparkle in her eyes and the genuine happiness of her smile. She is now a horsey girl.

Teddy’s favorite summer pastime is swimming at the lake. It’s glorious. I love it too… which is a surprise. Traditionally, I’ve detested swimming, the beach and the sand. Here, at the lake, I love it. The water is warm and clean and feels wonderful on my skin. Who would have known I would turn into a swimmer, a dive-underer?

Moose and Kitty are loving it here too. And we have added four ducks to the mix. There were five at first but the neighbors dog climbed under the fence and killed one before we could save her. That was sad and brutal and made me mad. But the scale was balanced when we saved a baby chipmunk from our other neighbors cat. He stayed with us for two days, recuperating and getting strong enough to rejoin his mom in the forest. He was the sweetest little thing.

We’ve bought a little house that our good man is renovating. He has torn it apart and is now putting it together again. He loves his work. It’s not for us to live in but for us to rent to a lucky family instead. When it’s beautiful again.

As for us, we are still renting this sweet little house in town and searching for our forever farm. It will come when the time is right. Patience, I remind myself, as I impatiently long to settle my heart on land that is our very own.

 

 

Love to you, my friend.

Blessings and magic,

Donni

Snapshots from Winter in New Hampshire

 

I’ve taken some videos from our winter here in New Hampshire and thought you might like to get a glimpse into how magical it’s been for us.

I haven’t really shared video here before and cringe a little at my voice and tone of excitement… I just can’t seem to be calm when the snow is falling… ha ha! The first couple don’t have sound.

The other day, we had gorgeous BIG snowflakes that fell all day long. The kids were super excited to get the ‘snow day’ call from school and spent the day playing and skating in the snow. I’ve spent my time watching it fall. Watching snow fall is my favorite thing to do these days. You’d think it would get old but it hasn’t.

 

 

We started to feel sorry for the birds as the snow covers all the ground and grasses and we were wondering where they get their food from. So, we put out a treat for them… a seed bell and a tray of apple pieces.
Who was first to the feast? You guessed it… Mr Squirrel!
Mr Cat can now be found at the kitchen window, trying to shoo Mr Squirrel away from the bird treats. There is an ongoing dispute between the birds and the squirrel and, now, the cat! Watching the shenanigans at the kitchen window is one of my favorite things to do.

 

 

Snow sometimes swirls around like glitter in the air.

 

 

For all our friends who don’t get snow, I can’t tell you how exciting it is for the kids when they get the early morning call letting them know that school has been cancelled. They whoop and holla and run around the dining room table chanting ‘snow-day, snow-day’!

 

 

Here are my little bird friends, feasting in the snow.

 

 

Yesterday was windy and COLD… but the boys braved the sledding hill again. I sat this one out in the car… but loved it all the same.

 

 

Blessings and magic,

Donni

Winner Announced :: 2016 Fairy Garden Contest!

With all the personal difficulties of the second half of last year, choosing a winner for the 2016 Fairy Garden Contest seemed almost impossible. How could I indulge in wonder when my heart was so heavy with worry and sadness? So, I set it aside for a time when felt I could welcome magic back into my life.

Yay… that time is now!

I’ve chosen a winner.

It was a very difficult task as there were many outstanding gardens. But, in the end, childhood magic won the day and Lea and Ryan’s garden nestled itself deep into my heart.

Isn’t it magical! It has fairies, pebble paths, painted fairy houses, sparkles, moss everywhere, pine cones, pretty flowers, handmade fairy furniture and so many other delightful fairy garden details.

 

Fairy Garde Contest Winner :: 2016 :: www.FairyGardens.com

The winners are sister and brother duo, Lea and Ryan. What a truly magical garden they made. They sent so many beautiful photos of whimsy, creativity and imagination and I’ve featured them all on my Fairy Garden site. Pop on over there to see the garden in full… and to see the amazing prizes Lea and Ryan have won.

I’ll be announcing the other 5 winners over the next few days… so be sure to stay tuned.

Blessings and magic,

Donni

How To Make Immune Boosting Cashmere Heart Hand Warmers

Teddy and his friends play out in the snow for hours each day. When they come inside at last, when the sun is setting and the night is creeping in, they all have rosy cheeks and frozen hands that they need to warm up, pronto.  I have a little trick to help them.

Together, we made sweet heart hand warmers out of an old cashmere sweater that had a little moth damage.

The hearts are filled with wheat berries and essential oil. We pop them in the microwave for a minute or so and they become the perfect little things for warming chilly fingers, fast.

 

How To Make Cashmere Heart Hand Warmers Tutorial : www.theMagicOnions.com

 

These cashmere heart hand warmers are super easy to make and a wonderful Valentine’s craft for you and your little Valentines to enjoy together.

 

Materials Needed to Make a Cashmere Heart Hand Warmer :

– A cashmere sweater, ready for recycling (thrift stores are a good place to find them)

– Wheat berries (from grocery stores, craft stores or pet shops)

– Needle & thread

– Pencil & paper

– Sharp scissors

 

Here’s How To Make Cashmere Heart Hand Warmers :

Tip :: Here is an easy cheat-sheet for you to pin to Pinterest so that you can find this tutorial later when you are looking for it. Trust me… half my time is spent looking for tutorials on Pinterest!

 

How To Make Cashmere Heart Hand Warmers Tutorial : www.theMagicOnions.com

 

First, we felt the cashmere sweater by popping it into the washing machine. Add detergent and wash it on the HOT cycle. The detergent and HOT water will shrink the cashmere, weaving the fibers tightly together and making the cashmere easy to work, sew and craft with and making sure the yarn doesn’t unravel when cut.

After washing it, put the cashmere sweater into the dryer on the HOTTEST setting you have. This hot drying cycle will felt the cashmere fibers even more.

Draw a heart shape on a piece of paper. Draw your heart about 4 inches in diameter… just the right size to warm a little fingers.

Cut out your paper heart with sharp scissors.

Pin the heart onto the recently felted sweater with a needle. Use this paper heart as a stencil to cut a few heart shapes from the wool.

Each hand warmer will need two cashmere heart shapes that you will sew together.

TIP :: If you feel up to the challenge, I will share a shortcut I devised to speed this stage up a little (I had a long list little boys who requested heart hand warmers!). I drew and cut out half a heart from the paper and then folded the cashmere in half too, pinning the heart to the center fold in the cashmere. I cut around the heart on the doubled up felt, leaving the centerfold intact, so that when I un-pinned it and opened it up, I had a beautiful cashmere heart.

 

How To Make Cashmere Heart Hand Warmers Tutorial : www.theMagicOnions.comHow To Make Cashmere Heart Hand Warmers Tutorial : www.theMagicOnions.com How To Make Cashmere Heart Hand Warmers Tutorial : www.theMagicOnions.com

 

Put two cashmere hearts on top of each other. Sew them together around the outside with a simple embroidery stitch, leaving about half an inch open at the base of the heart that we will use to fill with wheat berries. Please don’t get too worked up about the neatness of your sewing… as long as your stitches are even, your edges will look perfect when your heart hand warmers are done.

Tip :: Do not cut the thread short… leave a good amount of thread loose that you can use for closing the heart’s opening later.

 

How To Make Cashmere Heart Hand Warmers Tutorial : www.theMagicOnions.com

 

Slowly and with care, turn the heart inside out by pushing the top of the heart through the un-sewed opening you left for the wheat berries.

Look at your edges now. They are neat and tidy and look like they have been perfectly sewn. Ha! Well done!

Fill the heart with wheat berries.

Tip :: For added yumminess, put a few drops of your favorite essential oil onto the wheat berries before putting them into the hearts. This will ensure that yours will be the best smelling cashmere hand warmer hearts in town! In my home, our oil of the moment is On Guard… a protective blend that is an immune booster and has so far kept me and my little ones flu free this whole winter long. Did you know that I’m a doTerra Wellness Advocate? If you want to chat with me about how oils can help your family, please don’t hesitate to contact me. If you want to simply buy an essential oil (like On Guard) or find out more about why I love doTerra oils, I have a whole PAGE full of oil information.

 

How To Make doTerra Cashmere Heart Hand Warmers Tutorial : www.theMagicOnions.com

 

Stuff your cashmere heart well, using your forefinger to gently push the wheat berries into the heart. The plumper you can get your heart, the better it will look and feel to those cold little hands.

 

How To Make Cashmere Heart Hand Warmers Tutorial : www.theMagicOnions.comHow To Make Cashmere Heart Hand Warmers Tutorial : www.theMagicOnions.com

 

With the cashmere heart stuffed with wheat berries, sew the opening closed using the loose thread you left earlier.

Voila! The best smelling, most immune boosting, cashmere heart hand warmers in the world.

 

How To Make Cashmere Heart Hand Warmers Tutorial : www.theMagicOnions.com

 

Now, when Teddy and the boys come in from playing in the snow, I have these hand warmers warm and ready, waiting for frozen little fingers to warm.

The boys have even taken to warming them up and stuffing them into their pockets to warm their hands on the go.

 

How To Make Cashmere Heart Hand Warmers Tutorial : www.theMagicOnions.com

 

Your little ones will be glad for this fun and loving Valentines Day craft.

Blessings and magic,

Donni

Kitty’s Commision

I promised I’d share Kitty’s finished artwork for my upgraded Fairy Garden site.

It’s delightful… so full of whimsy and magic.

Look at the toadstools and the forget-me-nots, foxgloves and ivy. And the hedgehog, cardinal bluebird and butterflies. And the bee, of course. And the spider…

 

Watercolor Commission by Kitty - www.theMagicOnions.com

 

She’s amazing, my sweet 13! Imagine the beautiful things she’s going to create.

 

Watercolor Commission by Kitty - www.theMagicOnions.comWatercolor Commission by Kitty - www.theMagicOnions.comWatercolor Commission by Kitty - www.theMagicOnions.comWatercolor Commission by Kitty - www.theMagicOnions.comWatercolor Commission by Kitty - www.theMagicOnions.comWatercolor Commission by Kitty - www.theMagicOnions.comWatercolor Commission by Kitty - www.theMagicOnions.com

 

She loved this project and I loved working with her.

She says she’s open for commissions so, if you have any artwork you want done, send me an email.

 

Watercolor Commission by Kitty - www.theMagicOnions.comWatercolor Commission by Kitty - www.theMagicOnions.comWatercolor Commission by Kitty - www.theMagicOnions.com

 

Blessings and magic,

Donni

Whimsy and Spice

We’ve had fun in the snow again this week… starting with a very competitive snowball fight in the forest… boys against parents. It all started when the parents wanted to go for a walk in the forest after the snowfall. Boys weren’t keen for a walk… until a snowball fight was suggested.

I can’t tell you who I think enjoyed the snowball fight the most. The boys had great fun but judging by the way the parents faces shone with joy and exhilaration, it might have been the parents. In fact, a few of my muscles were very stiff and sore the next day, hinting to the fact that I may have become a little overexcited during the game. Leopard crawling through the snow is hard work.

I highly recommend a snowball fight the next time it snows in your neck of the woods.

 

 

I have commissioned Kitty to draw the header for my Fairy Garden site that is getting an upgrade. I love to watch her work. I asked for a whimsical look and, boy, has she outdone herself. I can’t wait to show you the finished art. It’s stunning!

 

 

We started to feel sorry for the birds as the snow covers all the ground and grasses and we were wondering where they get their food from. So, we put out a treat for them… a seed bell and a tray of apple pieces.

Who was first to the feast? You guessed it… Mr Squirrel!

Mr Cat can now be found at the kitchen window, trying to shoo Mr Squirrel away from the bird treats. There is an ongoing dispute between the birds and the squirrel and, now, the cat! Watching the shenanigans at the kitchen window is one of my favorite things to do.

 

 

It rained little balls of ice the other day. Quite the most magical thing! Tiny ice balls falling from the sky and bouncing on the ground. I know it’s called sleet or hail but I the sleet and hail I’ve seen before was bigger balls and fell for just a few seconds… this sleet fell for hours and hours. Afterwards, the snow felt thick and sandy and little droplets were frozen solid on all the trees and branches. It was quite something! They looked like dewdrops but were solid ice to the touch.

 

 

Here are some more photos of the snow I just can’t resist showing you. Snow is the prettiest thing!

 

 

Blessings and magic,

Donni

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The Canvas of Life

There are so many beautiful little things that make life meaningful. It’s the little things, my friends! My wish is that we see them for what they are… the notes in the orchestra, the colors in the masterpiece, the movement in our Riverdance.

I thought this was so beautiful and wanted to make sure you don’t miss it.

 

 

Blessings and magic,

Donni

Waldorf Everyday :: January 22

Come and join our Instagram tribe, Waldorf.Everyday.

It’s a collective window into our Waldorf and simple-living Instagram posts, bringing us all together and giving us a place where we can connect. If you want to be found by other Waldorf.Everyday followers, simply tag your posts with #waldorfeveryday . Each day, I’ll choose a tagged post to feature along with some beautiful words to inspire. If I feature your post,’ll tag you, of course.

Be sure to follow @Waldorf.Everyday on Instagram so that you don’t miss a single beautiful community share.

Here are some recent features :

 

Waldorf Everyday - www.theMagicOnions.com

 

The most beautiful experience we can have is the mysterious. It is the fundamental emotion that stands at the cradle of true art and true science.
Albert Einstein.

Beautiful photo from @jodimockabee

Waldorf Everyday - www.theMagicOnions.com

Raw foods contain the sunlight energies that are stored in their tissues through the process of photosynthesis. Rudolf Steiner

Waldorf Everyday - www.theMagicOnions.com

Just as we do not give full responsibility to children in questions of daily life because their faculty of judgment is not fully developed, so, too, we should not give them full responsibility for their nutrition by granting all of their wishes and cravings. Adults must lay the foundation, with consideration for particular likes and dislikes that a child may have.

Adults have a special responsibility to children in choosing their food and nutrition. A small child can not differentiate between “healthy” or “unhealthy,” “desired” or “less-desired.” Today, learning to eat right is more important than ever before since many products, such as sweets, are produced with children in mind and marketed directed to children in a wide variety of advertisements. WaldorfLibrary.org

Gorgeous gnome lunch photo from @elliotineverland

Waldorf Everyday - www.theMagicOnions.com

Warmth is probably one of the greatest gifts we can give our children. Not only the warmth of our love but also keeping their physical bodies warm. Children are developing their bodies especially during the first 7 years of their lives. An infant and a young child will always feel warm unless they are on the verge of hypothermia because they have an accelerated metabolic rate. If we don’t provide them with the layers of cotton, silk, and wool to insulate their bodies, then they must use some of their potential “growth” energy to heat their bodies. This same energy would be better utilized to further develop their brains, hearts, livers, lungs etc. In addition, being cold decreases immunity. We are all more susceptible to the germs and viruses that are always around us when we are wet and cold. When our body has to expend extra energy to keep warm then less energy is available to “fight” off infections. Susan R. Johnson, MD.

Beautiful photo from @wholefamilyrhythms

Waldorf Everyday - www.theMagicOnions.com

Mamas, we all strive and struggle and want to create conditions for our children to have the very best childhood. I want to remind you today, to remind yourself everyday, they do. They have you. And each day is a new day with something simple to celebrate. It’s already there. Ease up on yourself. (I include myself here) It is not about the decorations or crafts. It is about what lives in your heart.
Take your child in your arms or on your lap, have a good snuggle or rocking time. Just be present. Be there with yourself, and your child. Play a lap game or a finger play. Tell a story from your childhood, something simple that you remember.

This really is the foundation of rhythm. Of being present in the moment. Of simplifying the activities in the day so that we (me included) can just be here in the moment. Lisa Boisvert Mackenzie.

Beautiful photo from @buzaljko

I hope to see you over at @Waldorf.Everyday.

Blessings and magic,

Donni