Hi there! Thanks so much for popping in today for Sundays With Celia Vol 97. It’s so nice to have you here! This week we experienced our first snowfall of the season, and are expecting another BIG storm over the Thanksgiving holiday. We are going to have a white Thanksgiving! How’s the weather in your neck of the woods?

SUNDAYS WITH CELIA VOL 97 | Snow in Lake Arrowhead |

My Current Home Renovation Project

I’ve been entirely consumed lately with finishing up my current renovation in Big Bear Lake, so I’ve missed a couple of Sundays with you. My clients needed the home finished by Thanksgiving, and thankfully, we are making that happen. I can’t wait to start sharing the complete renovation project with you, as I think it may just be my best ever. Stay tuned! In the meantime here’s a sneak peek at the Mid Century Modern Guest Room. Take a look at what the room looked like when my clients purchased their mountain home. It was being used as a Bunk Room and Game Room, and was decorated for Christmas 365 days a year!

SUNDAYS WITH CELIA VOL 97 | My Big Bear Lake Guest Bedroom Reno | THE BEFORE | #BedroomDesign #MidCenturyModern


SUNDAYS WITH CELIA VOL 97 | My Big Bear Lake Guest Bedroom Reno | THE BEFORE | #BedroomDesign #MidCenturyModern

Here’s what it looks like today. Quite a transformation, wouldn’t you say? My clients like it so much they prefer it over their own Master Suite. I designed, and my talented carpenter made the bed frame and night stands.

SUNDAYS WITH CELIA VOL 97 | My Big Bear Lake Guest Bedroom Reno | #BedroomDesign #MidCenturyModern

Notice the Board & Batten wall. I designed it to frame the bed in lieu of a headboard. I love Board & Batten, as it adds dimension and texture to a wall and is very affordable to do. In fact, we used wood salvaged from a pine floor we took up in the home to make the Battens.

The amazing Mantis Swivel Wall Sconces are from CB2 here and were only $149. I think they look like a million bucks and simply make the room! I got the soft and luxurious No-Iron Supima Solid Duvet Cover & Euro Shams from Lands End here. They are 50% off right now for Black Friday, and start at only $79.94. This home is going to be a vacation rental so the No-Iron feature was a great selling point for us. The cozy, Soft-Touch Throw is from West Elm and is currently on sale for only $29.50. Get yours by clicking here.

SUNDAYS WITH CELIA VOL 97 | My Big Bear Lake Guest Bedroom Reno | #BedroomDesign #MidCenturyModern

Across from the bed we added a 70″ Round Perforated-Patterned Round Jute Rug from H & M Home found here for only $129.00. The Claudia Woven Chair is $349.00 from Urban Outfitters. The sheepskin is from IKEA and the Canvas Pillow Cover was a mere $5.99 from H & M Home.

SUNDAYS WITH CELIA VOL 97 | My Big Bear Lake Guest Bedroom Reno | #BedroomDesign #MidCenturyModern

A Trip To Chicago

The other thing that’s kept me away from my Sundays With Celia post was some travel. I made a trip to Chicago to watch my son be inducted into the Illinois Bar Association. I told you all about that visit in this post, A Winter Walk In Chicago. So, I know it won’t officially be winter until December 21st, but this time of year in Chicago the bitter cold sure feels like winter!

A WINTER WALK IN CHICAGO | Chicago's Famed Magnificent Mile |

Getting Ready For Thanksgiving

I know it’s a very busy time of year for all of us, trying to get ready for Thanksgiving, which is upon us in 4 short days. If you still need some last minute table decor advice have a look at my recent post, An Easy Thanksgiving Tablescape To Impress.


A Well-Red Friendsgiving

I’ve told you about my Well-Red Book Club before. The “Red” is in homage to the copious amounts of “red” wine we manage to consume at Book Club. Anyway, on Friday I hosted, for the 2nd year in a row, a Friendsgiving of my wonderful Book Club girlfriends. Anytime I entertain I like to do as much advance prep as possible, which ultimately allows me to enjoy my party time much more. One thing that might be overlooked when entertaining is to have an inviting front door. It will make the first impression as your guests arrive. So I always try to remember to polish my front door, wipe down the threshold, and sweep the porch.

SUNDAYS WITH CELIA VOL 97 | Friendsgiving | #FrontPorch

At my home my real friends always come to the side door, which opens into my mud room and then goes directly into the kitchen. So that door needs to be presentable as well.

SUNDAYS WITH CELIA VOL 97 | Fall in Lake Arrowhead | #LakeArrowhead #Fall

I decorated the interior of our home with my large collection of DIY Cloth Pumpkins, handmade by me each year. For my tutorial on how you too can make Cloth Pumpkins, click here. I have dozens and dozens of them and display them in different ways each year. You can never have too many!

SUNDAYS WITH CELIA VOL 97 | Handmade Cloth Pumpkins |

My Friendsgiving Tablescape

For this tablescape I used my Galvanized Steel Chargers. I topped them with my white White Porcelain Plates from World Market. I used my Wallace Hotel Flatware because I thought it looked nice with the galvanized chargers. The water & wine glasses look expensive (people think they are Waterford) but they are actually very affordable Godinger Dublin Crystal. Get a set of 12 here for only $54.49. The tablecloth is nothing more than a long piece of 54″ wide, brown ticking fabric. Similar monogrammed linen napkins can be found here. I tucked sprigs of seeded eucalyptus into each napkin for a pop of color.

SUNDAYS WITH CELIA VOL 97 | Friendsgiving Tablescape | #PartyFavor #Thanksgiving #Friendsgiving #Tablescape

For party favors I dried fresh rosemary and placed it in small, wide-mouth Mason Jars, tied them up in jute twine and added a darling little ceramic tag that says, “From My Garden”. The tags are from an Australian company called Paper Boat Press.

SUNDAYS WITH CELIA VOL 97 | Friendsgiving Tablescape | #PartyFavor #Thanksgiving #Friendsgiving #Tablescape

For the centerpiece I placed 3 varieties of fresh eucalyptus down the center of the table. I purchased the greens at my favorite little local shop, Wildflowers at the Lake.

SUNDAYS WITH CELIA VOL 97 | Friendsgiving Tablescape |

On top of the greens I placed a few of my DIY Cloth Pumpkins, these were made from burlap.

SUNDAYS WITH CELIA VOL 97 | Friendsgiving Tablescape |

In homage to the book we read, Traveling With Pomegranates, By Sue Monk-Kidd, I placed fresh pomegranates amongst the greens. I also tucked in a couple of turnips, and some fresh artichokes, carrots and parsnips.

SUNDAYS WITH CELIA VOL 97 | Friendsgiving Tablescape |

Preparing The Buffet

I asked everyone to contribute to the meal by bringing their favorite Thanksgiving Side Dish. I prepared my popular recipe for Super Moist & Delicious Brine-Cured Turkey.


I also prepared the Dressing, Gravy and fresh Cranberry Sauce.

SUNDAYS WITH CELIA VOL 97 | Thanksgiving Buffet |

I was entertaining a dozen guests so plated table service would not be practical. Therefore I opted for a Buffet on my kitchen island. Again, in an effort to save energy on party day I set up the buffet in advance, decorating it with an arrangement of fall greenery.

SUNDAYS WITH CELIA VOL 97 | Friendsgiving Tablescape | Centerpiece of greens | #Thanksgiving #Tablescape

I then placed trivets, serving platters and utensils on the buffet, avoiding a last minute search for these items.

SUNDAYS WITH CELIA VOL 97 | Advance Party Prep |

I also washed fresh kale and herbs that would become the garnish for my turkey, placing them in the fridge until it was time to carve and serve the turkey. Just before my guests sit down I fill water glasses with ice and water. But I also keep carafes of water ready to place on the table so guests may refill their glasses. You can never be too prepared.


The morning of my Friendsgiving I prepared the dressing and gravy. Just before my guests arrived I had them staged in my kitchen ready to warm up. A remote digital thermometer kept me abreast of how the turkey was doing. I had planned for it to reach the ideal 165° 30 minutes before we planned to eat. This would give me time to let the bird rest for 20 minutes after it came out of the oven, and allow time for carving as well. Timing is everything for a successful event.

SUNDAYS WITH CELIA VOL 97 | Advance Party Prep |

Our Friendsgiving was a rousing success, with all of us reminded how lucky we are to have each other. Two of my girlfriends brought me a hostess gift of these special Flavored Spirits from a company call Vom Fass. I had never heard of them but I’m sure paying attention now. Don’t they make a great hostess gift? I can’t wait to try them!

SUNDAYS WITH CELIA VOL 97 | Vom Fass Spirits |

For More Thanksgiving Inspiration See These Posts:

Entertainment on Sunday

This evening PBS is debuting what looks to be another outstanding show called The Chaperone staring one of my favorite actresses, Elizabeth McGovern of Downton Abbey fame. It’s based on a true story that has been adapted by Downton Abbey creator, Julian Fellowes. Before she was the starlet of the 1920s, Louise Brooks (played by Haley Lu Richardson) and her chaperone Norma Carlisle (Downton Abbey’s Elizabeth McGovern) had one unforgettable summer in New York City. Don’t miss the premiere of The Chaperone tonight! I know I’ll be watching. Psst! Want a sneak peek!

I hope you enjoy a lovely Sunday and a wonderful Thanksgiving. In closing I want you to know just how grateful I am to you for following along here. You are what makes this blog possible. HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

So there you have it: SUNDAYS WITH CELIA VOL 97

Thanks so much for dropping in!

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All opinions expressed in this post are my own. Unless otherwise noted, all photos are the original property of Celia Becker @ and may not be reproduced without specific permission. This blog post contains affiliate links. If you click on a link and make a purchase I may receive a small commission at no additional cost to you.  It’s what helps to make this blog possible. Thanks very much for your support.