Wednesday, December 17, 2014

A Bit of Christmas Magic ~ Catching the Daydream

A recurrent theme of TravelnWrite this past year has been chasing the daydream. Our daydream, to be more specific, ‘that stone house on a hill’ in Greece. 

DSCF0252Much like youth chasing butterflies, we came close, so very close, but it got away just like the illusive butterfly.

Ahh. . .but never under-estimate the seasonal mysteries of Christmas Magic.

Were I writing that famous Christmas column, it would read:  ‘Yes, Virginia. . .it is Christmas and we’ve finally caught the daydream.’

Our Christmas will be spent in ‘our stone house on the hill’ in Greece’s Peloponnese. Something that even as recently as Thanksgiving, we’d have probably never believed possible. But here we are in the house that caught our eye last spring; the one that got away from us last summer.

Details fell into place rather rapidly in the last few weeks.  A deal was reached. Airline tickets purchased to avoid the Christmas sky-high prices and we headed back to Greece last week.

Home for the Holidays

The entryway from the home's parking area
I didn’t show you many photos of ‘the house’ because after the deal fell through, we didn’t feel it proper to be showing someone else’s home.  Now that it is ours, come take the first of many tours I plan to take you on and let me tell you the plans we have for this place; where we plan to spend a few months each spring and autumn:

PicMonkey Collage
The view from 'the stone house on the hill'
We had a number of criteria, first and foremost was view. That we have! The home looks out over The Mani and the Messinian Gulf. Olive groves stretch out before us, with Mediterranean Cypress, and small stone villages giving the feel of Tuscany (without Tuscan prices!).

DSCF0955Speaking of olives, we have our own grove of 17 trees that cascade down the hillside on three terraces.  We’ve been studying up on olive pruning and harvest. (Move over Frances Mayes, we may be producing oil one day ourselves!).

But what won my heart was the lemon tree next to a small patio –’ the wine patio’ it is now called – at the side of the house; a part of a large garden area that cascades down the hillside.

The home’s previous owners took good care of it – they’ve owned it since it was built eight years ago – it was their retirement daydream.
As with all homes, though, new owners have a plan for making it their own and improving it  – we certainly do with this place.  We packed garden gloves, work tee-shirts and blue jeans on this trip and are putting them to use during the short time we have here this winter.

The garden needs some TLC
There’s painting, pruning and planting to be done.
Colors speak to the soul - we want this place to shout!

Out with the old and in with some new.

Temptations at a furniture store
It will take awhile, but I hope you’ll come on long on our journey in this new adventure.  It may lead to a new blog, or our efforts may be recorded every so often on these pages.  For now – it is time to do a little Christmas decorating. . . 

Christmas – in terms of celebration – in Greece comes in second to Easter.  So my next post will take you on a tour of Christmas shopping and decorating ~ we do hope your holidays are going well and that you are sprinkled with a bit of Christmas magic as well!

If I am able to find internet I’ll be linking up with my usual blogosphere buddies this week. Visit them for some amazing travels and decorating ideas:

Travel Photo Thursday – Budget Traveler’s Sandbox  
Travel Inspiration – Reflections En Route  
Mosaic Monday – Lavender Cottage Gardening


  1. I wish that you could have heard my squeal of happiness in reading this! Especially as I had missed your last post so I had no idea! Oh, I am so thrilled for you both. It really was meant to be...let the adventure begin!!!

    1. Limited internet here has made for limited responses. Thanks so much for the comment, sorry I am so slow in responding to it. Happy New Year, Heather!

  2. What a blessing, and what a lovely property! I can't wait to see more! Enjoy!

    1. Thanks for the visit Beth - look forward to taking you on a 'tour' soon!

  3. So nice when your dreams come true. Look forward to seeing more of this exquisite new home as you decorate for the holidays.

    1. Thanks Gaelyn, it will be a work in progress for many years but a fun project at that!

  4. This is absolutely awesome and HUGE congrats to you both, Jackie!! I have definitely been studying the pictures with enjoyment and wondering how amazing that would be to have a dream like that come true. Santa did you two right this year! Soooo very happy for you, my friends :)

    1. I just shared this with a girlfriend at work who absolutely loved it as well, Jackie. But, she called me saying, "I want to see pictures of the outside of the house!" :-)

  5. CONGRATULATIONS! Finally, that dream has materialised. You must be walking on clouds! I know the feeling!!! Good luck and may you have only happy moments in your new home!

  6. Just perfect! What a great property! Congrats dear Jackie and Joel! Welcome in Greece, in beautiful Peloponnesus and divine Mani! Wish you spend your happiest holidays in the house on the hill!
    Best wishes

  7. So very happy for both of you!! You held the dream as reality even in the face of disappointment and it has manifested as a "Dream come true." Enjoy it to the fullest!!
    Don Mackay

  8. Congratulations to you both Jackie. How exciting that your dream has come true....a perfect Xmas present! I can't wait to see how daily life unfolds.

  9. Fantastic news!! Well done both of you and we both hope you get the pleasure you deserve after the earlier disappointment. Yammas! B & V

  10. Ohh...Congratulations!!! I'm so happy for you and Joel.. What a sweet Christmas blessing for both of you. Just goes to show, if you plant the seed you will eventually catch the dream. Your stone home and its surrounding are so beautiful. I look forward to see the magic you will put in it. Congratulations again and Merry Christmas.

  11. Wow, how incredibly exciting and inspiring!!!

  12. YAY!!!!

    It's beautiful, inside and out! I've got pretty dramatic views, myself, here in Zeus' birthplace, but I have to say, yours are awesome! My heart skipped many beats when I first heard your fantastic news, Jackie, and after these beautiful photos, it's again calm and peaceful, as I picture you and Joel enjoying the comfort and joy of your early Christmas present!

    Happy Holidays, my friend!


  13. Yippee!! Congrats to you and Joel on your new home ownership overseas.


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