I love my Vermont Country Store catalog and never more than during the holidays. What I don't love are their prices. My mother had some of those little wax candle figurines. She bought them at the five and dime for – well, a nickel or a dime each. Now that bit of renewed nostalgia would cost me $14.95 for a set of three. I would love to have a bottle brush wreath. Back in the day, you could hang one on your door if you didn't want to go to the expense of some other type of wreath. Now they sell for $30.00. Or how about $20.00 for that paper nativity? It just ain't right.
But I did buy a bottle of window wax which comes with a half dozen stencil designs which were hardly reminiscent of the designs of the '50s. I was delighted last week when I discovered a packet of those old window stencils tucked in with my childhood advent calendars. Yes! My internet research has revealed that these old paper stencils have disappeared – are not available anywhere – but I have a leftover packet with stencils like new, carefully cleaned and stored by my mother. What luck! Now I could put Santa and eight reindeer on my kitchen window. (My packet never had the nativity, though back in the day some folks had that one.)
Now, when I was a little girl, my mother applied the designs to the windows by carefully dabbing the window wax over the stencils with a sponge. She did the work; I was deemed too young to handle a sponge. And guess what! I'm still to young. "Where's your mother when you need her?" I asked. It took me a while to figure out the technique, and when all else failed I read the directions. It's best if the sponge is dry, and do shake the bottle of wax before pouring it onto the plate.
I had a good time working with the stencils while Hallie watched. After all, I'm indulging my memories, not hers, and she was searching the internet for a cheaper bottle brush wreath. In the end, the window decorations were not showy, but I'd had some fun and kept myself out of trouble. KW