Spring by Kathryn White

Monday, December 20, 2010

Christmas Around the World

Have you ever considered spending Christmas in another part of the world, not because of family there but just for interest and a unique cultural experience? I was discussing this with my friend and colleague at work on Saturday. She is an avid and adventurous traveler who would hop on a plane tomorrow if she could. She would love to experience Christmas in her favourite place, Italy, where she has been several times already, but she would be open to spending it pretty much in any European country. She has spent time near Lajatico, in the region of Tuscany, the birth place of Andrea Bocelli.
I admire her sense of adventure and her wonderful flexibility.
I have learned much from her love of travel and culture.
Our oldest daughter, K who is also very adventurous, is in India so we will be thinking of her and missing her this Christmas Season.
Another couple we know, dear friends
H&M, have been to almost every continent in their travels, and have taken wonderful photos which they faithfully document in a book for each trip. It is always my pleasure to spend time reading the details of their trips, and to live vicariously through each adventure.

On the other hand, there is just no place like home for me...
I have truly become such a homebody and couldn't agree more with these sentiments:

There is nothing like staying at home for real comfort.
~ Jane Austen

One of the beauties of arm chair travels is that we can experience most parts of the world through books, documentaries, movies, music, and even online. It is so fascinating to me in this world of modern technology, that we truly can see the world from the comfort of our own home.
In the blogging world, there are also many people who document life via their blog.
There are well over one million bloggers
out there in cyber world, so if one was curious about how others live, they are just a click away from their discoveries.
I thought I would share a few blogs that have given me inspiration over the course of the year and also during this season as we prepare for Christmas.

Although Delores is from California, she has been in Italy and has some great photos to share as well as design and decorating ideas on her blog:
Vignette Designs

Tina in the Scottish Countryside has a quiet, reflective blog filled with domestic goodness:
The Quiet Home

One of our family's favourite Provinces to visit in Canada was the lovely Prince Edward Island, visiting the places that best describe the settings in the Anne of Green Gables series. I have had the privilege of meeting Kathie and spending time with her in Charlottetown in a small Coffee Shoppe, where we shared our hearts and our time over a coffee.
Her blog has been both inspirational as well as visually beautiful.
You can pay her a visit over at Island Sparrow, where she shares Christmas Traditions in and around her home and beautiful Island.

My 'blogging friend' Nan shares the most beautiful photos of her rural setting in Northern New England, a place that reminds me of a favourite author of mine, Gladys Taber who shares about her life in a seemingly quiet more gentle time.
You can visit Nan's 'bookish' blog, Letters from a Hill Farm, and check out her beautiful study room, which is just so perfect.

If you ever had a desire to travel to New England, here is another blog that is just so festive at the moment:
I heart New England

Melissa's blog shares some wonderful and inspirational decorating ideas. You can visit her here: The Inspired Room

For great recipes, check out Coralie's blog:
Charming Vintage Recipes

And to spend some time in Staffordshire Moorlands, United Kingdom, visit Steph at Curlew Country for her beautiful British countryside

My favourite Swedish artist is Carl Larsson, whose paintings depict charming home life with his family in Sweden.

This reminds me of Mia's blog, a lovely home in Norway, with many domestic scenes including her hens which I just love:)
My hens have been so faithful and as a result, we have enjoyed much baking over this holiday season with just a stroll away...such a blessing:)

Yesterday was a lovely stay-at-home day after a fairly busy past week, so I enjoyed catching up on my reading, making some phone calls, taking a walk with my dear hubby, playing a game as a family and doing some catch-up on blog reading.
There are many more beautiful blogs I could share with you, but I will leave you with this last blog, reading a post in which Brenda at Coffee Tea Books and Me, captured so well the meaning of Christmas for me. I share her sentiments of this season in her Sunday Afternoon Tea post which you can read here
It really spoke to my heart yesterday and was along the same lines as our Sunday morning series at church:
Jesus is the Light of the World
I will be in preparation for the Christmas Season this week, spending time with family and friends but hope to be back on Friday to share more.

The impact of the life of Jesus can be read in this essay entitled:
One Solitary Life, written by Dr James Allan in 1926.

You can also read what Napoleon Bonaparte (1769-1821) emperor of the French, had to say about Jesus here.
Pause playlist to listen to One Solitary Life

(You might remember Johnny Cash singing this as well in his rendition:
Here was a Man)