Monday Morning Potpourri

I have lots to talk about this morning – this will be one of my Potpourri Posts.

Do you see that stainless steel trash can next to the stove? We love this trashcan and paid a hefty amount for it several years ago. The lid is air tight and all you have to do to open it is lightly touch a piece of plastic at the front of the can. It’s made by OXO. We’ve had a few problems with the lid over the years. Most of it is solid stainless steel, but the edges are made of some sort of plastic. Over time, we’ve found the plastic sometimes splits, throwing off the functionality of the lid.

Each time this happened, I had visions of having to spend a lot of money for a new trash can. I wrote to OXO telling them of the problem and asked if we could just get a lid replacement, which we would be happy to pay for, hoping we could do that rather than replace the whole can. And each time, OXO has graciously FedExed a new lid to us. Three times. For free.

You read that right. For free. This company has the best customer service I have ever encountered and I wanted you to know about it. They make all sorts of things, including utensils and items for the kitchen. They are simply fantastic. So, a big hurrah for OXO!! And no, I’m not being paid for this. I just want to share some stellar customer service with you in an age where it can be sadly lacking.

Last night, we watched The Best of the Andy Williams Christmas Show on PBS.

I miss him.

I’ve always been a fan of his beautiful voice. And all those Henry Mancini songs sung by Andy Williams; Moon River, Charade, The Days of Wine and Roses, were a part of my youth and are even now on my playlist. I love them. But the Christmas specials – they were something I looked forward to every year. The extended Williams family looked so happy, so together, so free from care. Of course, as an adult, I know that it was staged for television – but I wanted to be a part of that happy glow, singing carols around a piano with everyone taking part, no Christmas day arguments, no hurt feelings. Just happy.

Watching these specials took me back in time once more. Don and I were both smiling, remembering a seemingly gentler time. Thank you, Andy Williams. It doesn’t seem possible that you are not here with us this Christmas.

If you’ve read this blog for a while, you know I have a rule about Christmas decorating. No decorations until the second week of December. This snow globe is the only thing on display here at the moment and that’s only because I never took it off display. I realize that this is a personal choice. Many of you have already started decorating. But for me, if I have decorations on display from the moment Thanksgiving ends until after the first of the year, the holiday loses its magic. I get used to seeing everything and I don’t really ‘see’ it anymore, if you know what I mean.

I see all sorts of holiday decorating linkups happening in blogland. But I almost never take part, because it would involve moving my decorating up on the calendar and I’m just not going to do that. It’s December 3rd and for me that’s too early. But I sure love seeing what everyone else is doing and I’m enjoying all the beauty around blogland. Note: Since Don is leaving in mid-December to work in California, I may move it up a few days. But only a few.

When do you decorate?

And finally:

A new scarf in the shop. I listed another one over the weekend and it sold before I could show it to you. Here are the Obsession Scarves currently available:

On the left, the Obsession Scarf in Claret. This is a rich burgundy color and it’s in silk and bamboo. Soft and silky.

Center, Obsession Scarf in Rainforest. Beautiful colors in wool and acrylic. Very soft.

Right, Obsession Scarf in Tutti Frutti. Wool and acrylic. Very soft.

There are also shawls (beautifully woven by my sister, Meredith) in the shop. And Meredith has crocheted some wonderful Granny Chic scarves which I love, love, love. Stop by for a visit.

Happy Monday.

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  1. says

    Ah, Christmas decorating! I start the weekend immediately following Thanksgiving. To me the season just flies by fo FAST, I want to appreciate the tinsel and lights for as Iong as I can get away with it! It lifts my spirit!… Love the scarves you made! Beautiful colors!.. And as for what I watched on t.v. last night?.. I ended up watching some VERY cheesy Christmas romance, and would have MUCH rather watched Andy’s Christmas special. I’ll have to check and see if they’ll be playing it again… Have a great week!

  2. Kris says

    Good morning Claudia. I am here doing some catch up. I have been terribly busy these past few days and weeks, and have missed a lot of what is going on in blogland. I had a pajama day yesterday too!!!
    I have a Featherweight and adore it. You will love yours too. They are beautiful machines, and wonderful workhorses.
    XO Kris

  3. Maria S. says

    Thank you for the OXO recommendation. I recently purchased a kitchen mandoline of theirs and love it. Knowing that they have great customer service is icing on the cake!

  4. says

    I use to only put up my Christmas decorations on Dec 10th or so. Now I start right away because A) it takes me longer B) I do like to join in the parties on blogland and C) often I’m gone for parts of Dec so when I come home the decorations always seem new!!! Crazy I know! I too miss Andy Williams so much! I always wanted to be his wife! LOL….. Enjoy your day dear friend. Hugs, Linda

  5. says

    I have a few OXO kitchen tools but have never had a problem with them. Glad to know they have such excellent customer service. I hear you on the Christmas decorating. Seems a lot of people start decorating earlier every year. One of my pet peeves is seeing Christmas decorations before Thanksgiving! I always felt like holidays should be celebrated one at a time – in order! I’m one of those who then takes my decorations down a day or two after Christmas. I declare, “OK, that’s it, Christmas is over!” 😉

  6. says

    We used to start the day after Thanksgiving, but now I insist that we wait until Advent starts (which was yesterday). So far, the tree is up — no decorations — and that’s it. Hope just to do a little bit at a time this year instead of one stressful day.

  7. Donnamae says

    Potpourri posts…gotta love ’em! OXO makes great kitchen tools…didn’t know about the great customer service though. Yes, Andy Williams will be missed, I grew up with his variety shows! I do start my Christmas decorating on Black Friday…but oh so slowly. I really drag it out. Little bit here, little bit there…just might be finished in a week! 😉

  8. says

    I am so with you on the decorating schedule! When I was a child, it went up one week before and was taken down one week after! I like it, but I don’t care to look at it (and dust it) for months on end! I have bent my two week rule the last few years to the nagging of a child, and with a child we now have more decorations too. Will this madness never end? Ha, ha… I’m glad to find one blogger who still sees the magic of a short-run Xmas!

  9. says

    My dad had a rule that the Christmas tree couldn’t go up until Christmas Eve – he was raised believing that Santa brought the tree. I put mine up around the first of December because I love (read: need) the lights. I’m thinking of leaving my mantel lights up through January. The lighting of the tree is for sure a personal decision, but if we were all the same we’d be boring. I love the old Christmas movies too, It’s a Wonderful Life and White Christmas being my two faves. Hugs ~ Mary

  10. says

    I’m with you on waiting until closer to Christmas to decorate. Partly because I am lazy :) Partly because I don’t need as much decor. And partly because I feel that the whole season has been over done and commercialized to the point that I just say “Enough” and keep it very simple at our house. I’m glad I’m not the only one who waits.

  11. says

    Claudia – It’s so nice to hear someone brag about a company’s customer service rather than gripe about it. Those kind of companies are few and far between. I have some of their products and have always been pleased with them.

    The Andy Williams and Henry Mancini duo is one that will never be replaced. The first year John and I were married, he got us really good seats to go see them together in concert. It was definitely one of the best concerts I’ve ever been to. To sit and listen to Mancini play that piano and then to hear Andy sing was just magic.

    Look at my new McCoy pieces on my post today and Bella’s message.


  12. says

    I remember the Andy Williams Christmas specials as a little girl…my parents adored him. He had such a gentle voice. He is missed.

    We have always started Christmas decorating in mid December as we get a live tree. Nothing worse than needles falling everywhere by Christmas day! I think I would get a little bored with the decorations if I had them up sooner…my home is so small and I have so much. So, I just burn a lot of evergreen scented candles. listen to carols and do a little shopping. That keeps me in the spirit!

    Have a great day, Claudia!


  13. LuvWheaties says

    I also do not decorate for Christmas until the second week of December, and I take everything down the day after Christmas. I absolutely LOVE the tree and decorations when they are up, but by December 26, I want my house back. And I am also a big Andy Williams fan. I have great memories of watching the Osmond Brothers debut on his show!

  14. Patti says

    I know what you mean about the decorating too early. If Thanksgving is later in the month then I might decorate the following week….but it was early this year and it is only Dec 3 but I did put most of my stuff up only because it takes so much work and I wanted to bring a little cheer into our home. I will miss Andy Williams too and consider it a great loss to not have him in this world, but we do have his music. I wish I had seen that show on PBS!! I do remember all of his Christmas specials and Bing Crosby’s. Much simpler times…don’t you think? Speaking of Andy, I found this app for my IPhone that lets me take most of the music on my itunes and take snippets of them and make a ring tone. I love that when my phone rings it is Andy singing “The Most Wonderful Time of the Year”. On the Oxo subject, good service should be shouted from the rooftops! ~Hugs, Patti

  15. says

    Pretty scarves, Claudia. Well, as far as decorating goes, I put the tree up this weekend. I like to take my time and enjoy the process. A little each day or it’s too stressful-I miss the simpler times.

  16. says

    Hello dear Claudia,

    And happy Monday to you too. The scarves are beyond lovely. I adore the colors and the patterns.

    FYI, I don’t like to decorate until about the 9th or 10th. I used to teach a huge Christmas class every year, which meant I had to decorate early and heavily. It wore out my senses. The mantel will be the first thing to be adorned. Lots of greenery and a line of my German sheep.

    I DO love the little lights. I guess I’d keep them up all year if it weren’t tacky.

    Love to you,


  17. Annette Tracy says

    Usually my tree goes up around the 2nd wk of December or so, I don’t feel the need to rush into it as my house is small too. I do leave the tree up til New Year’s though. And I usually leave snowmen up thru January!

  18. says

    I start decorating the day after Thanksgiving. I spend way too much time on it to just have it up a few days – so the earlier the better for me. Also I have had a Christmas themed brunch on the second Saturday of December for nineteen years. That is my big motivation for getting all the decorating done. I am glad mine is finished. I have already done one post to my blog of Christmas things.

  19. says

    I have to tell you, I just love your kitchen and that Snow Globe? I wouldn’t put it away either.. Does it have water in it? It’s beautiful.. As for decorating, none for me this year. My husband just has his spine completely reconstructed up at Duke University Hospital in NC a week ago and all our decorations and tree are in the shed and I can’t get to them. Even if I could they would be too heavy for me to carry in so I may just buy a small table top tree for this year..
    Robyn :)

  20. says

    Claudia- I love your little bit of Christmas. As a child we always went out and cut a tree on Dec. 12th, my birthday. My mother never decorated anything until then and I always kind of felt that I missed part of Christmas. My Aunts all had their stuff up and things under the tree right after the first of December. That is when I usually decorate…right after the first. This year I did the outside earlier because we had warm weather-a precious commodity this time of year in WI. By the time Christmas is over I am ready to “clean up” for the first. Blessings to y ou-Will Don be home in time for Christmas? xo Diana

  21. says

    I like potpourri posts – my life is just one huge potpourri.. :-) I admire your decorating stance.. but I start decorating the day after Thanksgiving as it takes me almost 2 weeks to do it all… a bit at a time. I’m not a barn-burner.. I do some things and rest.. do some more and rest.. haha. NOW.. since our kitchen fire.. we have housecleaners and painters in here and everything is covered with plastic and I’m having a hard time with that. ::deep breath:::

    ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

  22. Janie F. says

    Loved today’s post Claudia. I love hearing about favorite memories of Christmas past and I too loved watching the Andy Williams Christmas shows. I decorate the day after Thanksgiving just because I work at home and it cheers me up to have our colorful decorations around. My sisters laugh because I decorate our laundry room but it’s just off the kitchen and very
    visible so I say why not. I try to add one new decoration each year and a new Christmas book for my collection. No matter how stretched our finances are just being able to see our tree lit each night makes the season special for us. The scarves are just beautiful!

  23. says


    Thank you so much for letting us know about the trash can! I always love to hear about companies with great customer service! And I love the scarf! So pretty!


  24. says

    I love Andy Williams too. It is nice to talk to someone who knows who he is!! I get a bit sad every time his songs come on. I missed the show on PBS :( I do love all those specials that came on every year. I like your snow globe! Enjoy your decorating! I wish I could wait longer, but this year was hard I haven’t been able to full blown decorate for years so I too excited to wait!
    Hugs, Lisa

  25. Nola says

    I love the few small kitchen gadgets I have that are by OXO. They are worth any extra they may cost because the are always good quality. It’s. Ice to know their customer service is high quality, too. I hate trash cans, they are a nasty, evil necessity; I want a self cleaning one!

  26. says

    I adore what few OXO utensils I have. Admittedly some are just too large for my small hand to grip, but they are the best quality. I miss Andy, too, and watched a bit of the special the other night. His is one of my favorite Christmas cassettes I play around the house each year. I tend to hold off decorating until mid-December, only because I always have a real tree and I like to have it up until Twelfth Night (Jan. 6) so I can observe the 12 days of Christmas. (And by then a real tree would be a real fire hazard if I bought one too early!) I might place one or two things around now and then… the basket that holds cards is already out because I’ve already started to receive some; and my Tasha Tudor Advent Calendar came out on Dec. 1st so I could start opening windows and enjoying all the images inside. Wishing you a lovely season as you ready your cozy home for Christmas together, whenever that might be.

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