Welcome to JOYFUL REFLECTIONS. My Header this month shows our pretty Montenegro LILIES blooming on our deck this Summer.

Monday, December 31, 2018

Christmas is Over and the New Year Begins!!!!

Decorations at Antler Hill Village, Biltmore Estate,  Asheville, NC --12/13/18
Happy New Year, my Friends.... Hope all of you have had a wonderful holiday season ---and are anxiously waiting 2019.    For me,  after a year learning to live with A Fib (and the side effects) --I hope that 2019 will be a BETTER year....  It hasn't been easy (as most of you know) for an energetic, busy person like me  having to learn that life can be just as exciting and joyful  even if I have had to slow down considerably!!!!

I have decided to show more pictures from our Christmas Trip to BILTMORE on Dec. 13, 2018.   That was such an amazing evening  ---and definitely a highlight of Christmas for us.   I have two sets to share.  One is from our magical walk around the Antler Village Area,  which is something we have never done during Christmas before...  We both were SO impressed --and since it was a cold evening and since there was still snow on the ground,  that made it even more magical....

The other set features my pictures of  some of the Hearth and Fireplace Decorations in the house... I don't have a mantel now --but I've always loved mantel decorations...  I remember my mother's pretty mantel decorations when I was young.  

Hope you  enjoy one last post from our wonderful Christmas At Biltmore experience...








This entire fireplace is so gorgeous.






Called the Chimney Room at Biltmore;   Isn't it unique???




This was a very interesting mantel,  don't you think?



Walking around the Grounds at the Antler Hill Village was so special!












I think this was my favorite mantel/fireplace display.






Happy New Year!!!



This picture of us was taken on 12/24/18 in our Living Room.   We are here to say to each of you:   HAPPY NEW YEAR.   May 2019 bring you lots of happiness and good health!!!!

Hugs,

Monday, December 24, 2018

MERRY CHRISTMAS 2018 (plus some Family News)

Merry Christmas to all of my Family and Friends... I hope and pray that all of you are having an awesome Christmas,  celebrating the Birth of Jesus Christ,  with those you love.

Today I'll share with you some of the special Christmas Trees we saw while visiting the BILTMORE CHRISTMAS on 12/13/18.  Take a minute from your busy schedule,  grab a cuppa,  sit back and enjoy seeing these beautiful Christmas Trees.
































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This  tree is not at Biltmore... This is the beautiful tree in our home!




Vivian Lee,  Great Granddaughter --age 11 months,  and walking all over the place!
I must share some new family news with you today....  See Lil Miss Grinch???   Don't you just love her shirt?????  ha ha ....  She's a happy little girl because she is going to have a LITTLE SISTER in MAY....   The new baby's name will be Veronica...  Isn't that just awesome?!!!!!!   I'm so excited...

Have a wonderful Christmas, my dear friends,  and thanks for hanging in there with me during this very difficult year healthwise...  Hopefully,  Santa will bring me a new dose of energy!

Hugs,

Monday, December 17, 2018

A Biltmore Christmas 2018

Walking around OUTSIDE in the SNOW --enjoying the HUGE 55 foot Norway Spruce Tree surrounded by smaller trees;  There are usually luminaries all along the big driveway --but they couldn't put them out due to the snow.
Dear Friends,  I hope you are enjoying the Christmas Season so far...  George took me to the BILTMORE HOUSE and GARDENS,  Asheville,  North Carolina,  on 12/13/18 to see "A Biltmore Christmas"...The theme this year is:  "The Art of Christmas"...The first word that comes to mind when talking about that fabulous evening is  "WOW"....

Since we have season's passes to Biltmore,  we try to go there every 3-4 months.  Usually though,  we only visit the GARDENS,  and seldom go into the big house...  This year we have visited the house/mansion twice.  Once was in September --during the Chihuly Exhibit.  AND --the other was now to see all of the Christmas lights and decorations...

I HIGHLY recommend a visit to Biltmore during the Christmas season.  This year we even drove around to the Antler Village and Winery area and enjoyed all of the gorgeous lights there also... As many times as I have been to Biltmore,  I truly think that this latest visit was one of my favorites.  Thanks, George, for taking me there.  Being there truly 'made' Christmas for me this year.

Here are some interesting facts about the Biltmore Christmas for you to think about:
-There are 113 decorated Christmas trees,  with 55 of them inside the house.
-The largest tree inside is a 35'  Fraser Fir (in the Banquet Room).
-There are 45,000 lights inside the house,  and another 135,000 lights around the estate.
-There are 13,000 Ornaments.
-There are 1000 Poinsettias inside the house.
-There is  10,227 feet of Garland.
-There is LIVE music. (We enjoyed hearing a boys' choir sing,  a harpest,  a pianist,  and a guitarist. AWESOME.)
-There are 150 candles  lit inside the house.
-There are 1000 handmade bows.

Biltmore Estate is the largest private home in America.   Total floor space amounts to 4 acres.  That includes 35 bedrooms and 43 bathrooms.

I took 200 pictures that night...  Today I will share just a few of my photos....In future blog posts,  I'll share more pictures of some of the amazing Christmas Trees in the rooms,   the decorated hearths/mantels,  and more from our walk around the Antler Village area...

Hope you enjoy today's pictures ---showing just a tiny piece of what we saw that evening!!!


Inside the Winter Garden where we enjoyed the entertainment;



The HUGE 35 foot Fraser Fir Tree in the Banquet Room;



The other end of the large Banquet Room;



Love this large Cresche --showing the true meaning of Christmas;



There are 65 fireplaces in Biltmore.   This picture was taken in the Tapestry Gallery. People love this room since there are tapestries on all of the walls..



You have to see this huge wreath inside the house in order to realize how very large it is... There are 490 wreaths around the entire estate.



Beautiful decorations in the Library;  The decorations in this room followed a Travel Theme--filled with ships, stars,  and rope knots.



The Grand Staircase is always a highlight ---since,  as you walk up and around--you get different views of the tree below.  This gorgeous tree is decorated with stars  and cherubs.  



Special decorations for children in this room;   I didn't realize when I took this picture that Humpty Dumpty was there!!!!



Many people would miss seeing some of the little extra decorations ---but this one caught my attention.   I love decorating with holly....  Neat!!



Decorations EVERYWHERE --even in the halls;   There were 1000 Poinsettias in the house!!!



Do you like to make Gingerbread Houses???  Here's one for you,  a Biltmore Gingerbread House!!!!  Wow!



This is a picture of the Gatehouse ---as were leaving Biltmore... I was unable to get a picture here when we entered --because of all of the cars in front of us...



I'll close with a picture that the folks at Biltmore took of George and me.

Hope you enjoyed a little from our wonderful Christmas Trip to the Biltmore Estate..  It was an amazing evening!!!   Here is another interesting link about Christmas at Biltmore.  Click HERE.

Hugs,