Sunday, December 21, 2014

Decking the Halls ~ In Greece

Rosemary Clooney was dreaming of a “White Christmas” right after Elvis had predicted a “Blue Christmas” and somewhere between the plastic goods and kitchen accessories, Bing Crosby had swept us off to Hawaii with his rendition of Mele Kalikimaka. The store’s background music had shoppers pumped by the time they reached the enormous Christmas decorations area.

Kambos Town en route to Kalamata
I need not have worried about ‘missing’ Christmas because we are in Greece. The spirit – both Holy and Shopping – is alive and well in this part of the world.

Christmas Bazaar fund-raiser - Stoupa town
The store I described above called, “Jumbo” is in the city of Kalamata, the shopping Mecca of this region. Those of us in the surrounding villages make pilgrimages there sometimes once or twice a week. In this ‘stone house on the hill’ we are about an hour’s drive away.

Our House day three

Our shopping has been focused this week on more practical things: coffee pot, microwave, rugs, furniture, bedding. . .so I am afraid if you were hoping to see this perfectly decorated new holiday home of ours, you are out of luck!  In fact, I am writing this post sitting on a folding chair hunched over a small end table in our nearly empty living room.

We bought the car as part of the house deal

 I must thank all of you who wrote comments or sent emails containing good wishes about our finally catching the daydream, and purchasing the stone house on the hill. They all meant alot to us and I would normally respond to each, but because we are limited to cafe internet time this trip, a bulk thank you will have to do until I get back to Wi-Fi land.

DSCF1228Some of you said you were eagerly awaiting more about Christmas and others wanted more about the house. . .so today you are getting a mish-mash report with a little about both.

We purchased the house ‘furnished’ just because that is the way it was sold. The well-used furniture was not to our taste so in addition to buying furniture, we have been selling furniture this week.The heavy, and far-too-big-for-this-house furniture (see last post) was sold Friday

And for another few days we are ‘camping out’ in our home. The new stuff is scheduled for delivery December 24th! And what a present that will be!  (Our good-sport English friends, Sue and Don, pictured in the photo were our first guests yesterday, proving again that good times can be had in the barest of surroundings.)

DSCF1207 The painters arrive tomorrow to start the process of ‘warming up’ this hospital-white-from-ceiling-to- floor house.  The color chips have been selected and by the time the furniture arrives it should have a warm, colorful setting in which to reside.

For those of you wondering whether we are enjoying this or whether we are having second thoughts, I can assure you we’d have missed one of life’s great experiences had we not thrown caution to the wind and chased the daydream.

Waterfront in Stoupa Town Saturday night
Merry Christmas!


  1. What an adventure! Sending my Warmest Wishes for a Holiday Season that you won't soon forget...

    1. Thanks Heather for your warm holiday wishes - it will certainly be one of the holidays we remember above all others. Xoxo J.

  2. Replies
    1. Hope you had a Merry Christmas Lilli and Happiest of New Years to you as well.

  3. Very exciting and it sounds and looks like you are making some fantastic baby steps, Jackie. Looking forward to pictures of the outside of your beautiful place when you get a chance. Merry Christmas :)

    1. Seems like a combo baby steps and giant leaps Mike. What a whirlwind of activity around this house on the hill. I promise some outside photos will be appearing - I will have 'before' and 'after'!

  4. I'm overjoyed for you!! So inspired by your courage and bravery and good spirits as you settle in. :-)

    1. Oh Krista we've been so busy that we haven't had time to think much about our spirits - it will likely hit us as we are flying back to the Pacific Northwest! Happy New Year to you and Bear!!!

  5. All one needs for good Greek hospitality is love, (and maybe some good meze and wine)! Did your new furniture get delivered? I was surprised to hear that the furniture people were willing to deliver on Christmas Eve! In any event, the house looks warm and inviting, as is!

    Happy New Year in your new stone house on the hill!


    1. Oh Poppy that is so true, isn't it!? We did get the furniture - it was in the house by 1 p.m. on Christmas Eve so while it wasn't the best decorated for Christmas at least we had a table and chairs and newly painted walls!! Happy New Year to you!!!

  6. It may feel a bit chaotic right now, but what an exciting time in your life. I hope you had a good Christmas. The new year should be lots of fun.

  7. What an exciting way to usher in a New Year with a new home and location, congrats and hope you have a fun time furnishing your new space.

  8. Sounds like an incredible adventure. Best wishes for an enjoyable 2015.

  9. How wonderful to experience Christmas in another culture. I've never had that pleasure.

  10. Your stone house on the hill in Greece sounds like it's going to be a dream come true filled with the promise of new friends and adventures. How fun to spend your Christmas there. Wishing you a very Happy 2015!

  11. You are so right. Caution belongs in the wind in certain circumstances. Good on you for recognizing the dream is worth it. There's a book coming, right? "The House on the Hill in Greece" has a nice ring to it. Happy New Year!

  12. Christmas is in the heart and in your new home it looks like you found that out. What a fantastic Christmas gift -- your house!!


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