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Category Archives: Holiday

Rug Foliage

What Better way to get your home ready for fall than with a cozy and luxurious rug?  Here are some of our fall favorites, that will also work all year round. Choose from brilliant, highly pigmented hues, to rich, calming neutrals.

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Thanksgiving Ready-Tables, Chairs and Accents for your Holiday Hosting

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Who doesn’t love Thanksgiving? Family, friends, food and football. Thanksgiving is a time to relax, and appreciate the blessings in our lives, forgetting the stress of the daily grind. If you are hosting Thanksgiving dinner in your home however, this day of peace and gratitude can become very stressful! The last thing you want to worry about amidst the chaos of kitchen timers and relatives is table space. Every guest needs a seat, and each dish needs a place at the table to be displayed. Luckily, at Mohr & McPherson we are running out of space for all of our tables. Here are some of our favorite dining tables, coffee tables, buffets, centerpieces, and extra accents to help you entertain the people you are so grateful to have.

 

Dining Tables

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Industrial reclaimed wood dining table with cast iron base. This table top will add texture and color to your dinner conversation. There is something about eating at a rustic table that  enhances the appetite.

Style Idea:

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Add this matching Industrial reclaimed wood bench with cast iron to your Table for a perfect fit

 

 

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Acacia dining table with cast iron base and built in seating that swings in and out.This style seats eight, ask about availability of four-seater.
This table is ingeniously convenient. Not only do you not have to provide chairs, the seats fold back in! Now you have extra space around the table for standing and talking with guests before and after dinner, perhaps for a dessert buffet.

 

 

 

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Crank Table-Round iron dining table with industrial crank mechanism. Height adjusts from 28″ to 40″ high. 39.5″ diameter.
Evelyn Dining Table-Mango wood with splayed legs in Natural finish. 48w 48d 30h.

These round tables are great for a smaller party in a tight space. Sleek and sophisticated, nice and easy.

 

Style Idea:

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Painted iron six candle stand. Add this to any table as a centerpiece, or a side table for some detail and mood lighting.

 

Chairs

 

 

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From Top Left:

Classic style dining chair, iron with blue painted finish
Alberta Wishbone Chairs. Classic Mid Century Modern with Alberta Fabric.
Beautiful wooden dining chair. Also great in a room setting.
Iron & leather dining chair with arms.

 

Sideboards

 

 

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Easton 2 section, 6 drawer buffet with an open hutch, multi colored mango wood drawers. Hutch is 12 deep and secured to buffet.This is a beautiful statement piece, which also serves as practical. Great for storing anything you may need to grab or stash somewhere quickly, as well as displaying photos, candles, ceramics, books, or anything you want to show off to your guests.

 

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Parker buffet with three drawers, two doors and bottom shelf. Brass ball handles. Mango wood, honey finish. AL:so available in a natural finish. Classic, simple and neutral, this buffet is great for storage, or a record player, while also supplying extra surface space for whatever you need to display.

39116__95208.1407924459.1280.1280Narrow mango wood console table with tapered legs, Natural finish.

 

 Extras

 

 

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From Top Left:

Iron rack with wood handle, holds ten wine bottles!
Square tray, made from steel with nickel plating.
Shesham coffee table with bright blue painted finish.
Painted iron coat rack with flourishes.

Songkran: Family, Renewal and Water Fights for the Thai New Year

tumblr_n3zfa0nWpP1sxb3k2o1_1280-2Sawadee Pee Mai! – That’s Thai for Happy New Year! In Thailand, the beginning of the New Year is celebrated in April, the hottest month of the year. The New Years celebration is called “Songkran festival”. The word Songkran means “to pass” or “to move into”. It is derived from the Sanskrit language and in the context of Thai New Year it refers to the passing and moving of the sun, moon, and other planets. The celebration typically lasts for three days, and consists most famously of people partying in the streets and throwing water at each other. Sounds like fun! This year, Songkran was celebrated From April 13 through 15.

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Renewal

The festival taking place in the spring is significant as it represents the renewal of the earth after winter, as well as the beginning of the new year. To go along with this theme, people in Thailand clean their homes from top to bottom for the beginning of Sonkran.

Water

Water is representative of cleansing and purifying the self for the new year. Water is the trademark of the Sonkran celebrations, as it is known as “The Water Festival”. Basically, people walk around with water guns and buckets of water, splashing and soaking everyone around.

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While the water symbolizes a cleansing & rejuvenation for the new year, it is certainly nice to cool off! 

Buddha

Buddhists visit temples and water is poured onto images and statues of Buddha, and over the hands of monks to show respect.

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Family and Community 

Many Thai people travel to spend time with family during Songkran. The festivities of Songkran bring together all the different members of the family and society, and unite their relationships with each other, as well as with nature.

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 Even the Elephants get in on the fun!  

Events and Traditions

The first day of the festival is called “Songkran Day”. All over the country there are parades and processions featuring images of Buddha. The water throwing also begins on this day.

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 The Songkran Queen

The second day of Songkran is called “Wan Nao”. This is the celebration of the old Thai New Years Eve. It takes place on the day when the sun travels between Pisces and Aires. Many Buddhists go to their homes this day to build Sand Chedis, which is a sand castle that looks like a Buddhist Temple.

The third day of Songkran is New Years Day. Offerings are left at temples this day, amongst other festivities.

Visiting

Many tourists plan their trips to Thailand around Songkran, as visitors are welcome to join in the festivities. In fact, if you are walking around during this time, it will be difficult to avoid getting soaked.

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In some cities, this centuries-old tradition includes a good smearing on passersby of colored talc as a symbol of good luck.

Chinese New Year: Evolution of The Spring Festival and Ancient Traditions

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If you celebrate New Years Eve marked by the calendar used in America, you are probably just now getting back into your regular routine of eating, sleeping and exercise, or perhaps you have just begun a new routine. If you live in China or are Chinese American, you are just getting ready to throw routine away for the duration of the two week celebration for Chinese New Year.

The Chinese calendar is dependent on the lunar calendar. The darkest day of the month is always the first day of the month. New Years festivities also usually begin on the first day of the month, and last until the brightest day, which is the 15th, or the day of the full moon. Chinese New Year is also called The Spring Festival, and is symbolic of the ending of Winter. It is traditional to clean your house and get a haircut before Chinese New Year, so that bad Chi form the previous year does not follow you into the New Year.


Legend
“In ancient times, Buddha asked all the animals to meet him on Chinese New Year. Twelve came, and Buddha named a year after each one. He announced that the people born in each animal’s year would have some of that animal’s personality.” 2014 is the year of the horse.

Fireworks
In Chinese culture, it is believed that fire can ward against bad luck. Because of this, many New Years traditions involve the color red, which is symbolic of fire. People wear red and decorate by writing poems on red paper. Children are given red envelopes containing “lucky money”. There are large firework displays. These symbolize fire, as well as an ancient custom of lighting Bamboo stalks so that the flames would scare away evil spirits.

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Family Feast

One of the strongest aspects of the Chinese New Year celebrations is spending time with family. Similar to many holidays around the world, families reunite and gather in each other’s homes to eat, drink and be merry. In America, the Family aspect of this tradition evolved, and became whole neighborhoods celebrating together. This is because when the Chinese originally immigrated to America, many people came alone, or without their families. These people turned to their neighbors for a sense of community and formed neighborhood associations to keep traditions alive. In modern day America many Chinese neighborhood associations host New Year festivities.

Most families cook more than enough food for their family parties on the eve of the New Year. The left over food symbolizes the hope for abundance and wealth in the year to come. Another common tradition is Chinese Nian Gao, which is a special cake. After dinner is over, people gather and wait for the New Year, and usually do not sleep that night.

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new-year-food

Lanterns and Dragons
On the fifteenth night of the lunar month, which is the brightest night and the close of the New Year celebration, The Chinese have a lantern festival. Lanterns are hung in temples and people carry them to a nighttime parade. The lanterns are often exquisitely decorated, painted with scenes from histories, legends, zodiac signs, animals and birds. A well-known part of the lantern parade is the dragon dance. Silk paper and bamboo are used to make a dragon, often one hundred feet long. The dragon is held up over the arms and heads of young men who dance as they move the dragon through the parade.

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Culture
It is common for people in China to take weeks off from work to prepare for and celebrate the New Year. However the New Years celebrations are shortened in America, and the dragon dance always takes place on a weekend, regardless of the moon. Many Chinese American communities also incorporate elements of typical American culture parades such as Marching bands and floats.

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In Boston

This year, The Chinese New Year Parade will take place on Sunday, Feburary 9, 2014. It will start at 10am  and end at 5pm. The parade takes place on Chinatown Main Street. Here are some other celebrations taking place in the city throughtought the Chinese New Year.

FREE Admission to the Museum of Fine Arts
Feb 8-465 Huntington – special events including a Lion dance, martial arts, Korean bowling and guided tours of the Asian Galleries.

Boston Children’s Museum
February 9 from 11am to 4pm – $14 – cultural and performances celebrating the New Year.

Chinese New Year in Harvard Square
February 23 from 1-3pm. Starts in Winthrop Park with a lion dance followed by the dance,firecrackers, hanging red lantersn and parade through Harvard Square.

Warm, Plush & Unique Gifts for the Holiday Season!

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The weather outside is… actually not that bad. But if I know New England, it’s due to get frightful any minute now. Snuggle up this Holiday season with the fluffiest pillows, coziest scarves, and an array of ornate hand woven blankets, Indian fabrics, Indian Poufs, and assorted pillows!

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Hand Embroidered Wool Scarf/Shawl
India, $68
#40140

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Kantha Stitched Scarf, Kimono Fabric Edge
$65
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Kantha Stitched Blanket
India, 60 x 86, $125
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Embroidered Indian Poufs
$136

#NC39496

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Cotton Pillow with Design
18 inches, Thailand, $65
#40690

Blue Pillow with Feather Insert
18 by 18, $195
#41110

Assorted Pillow, Yellow Flowers
22 by 22, $225
#41071

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Silk Cushions
$19

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Giving Thanks in Thailand: The Festival of Lanterns

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While Americans are braving grocery stores for last-minute thanksgiving items, fighting legendary traffic, and snoozing through football games after turkey bliss, different traditions will be practiced on the other side of the world. From November 24th until November 28, the people of Thailand will celebrate the Loi Krathong festival. The largest celebration is in the Thai city of Chiang Mai. Activities include the procession of hanging lanterns, fireworks display, Miss Noppamas beauty contest, light and sound presentations, arts and culture performances and the Krathong desire contest. It’s kind of a big deal.

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Loi Krathing has been celebrated for centuries in Thailand, always between the middle of the eleventh lunar month and the middle of the twelfth lunar month (November). When the full moon shines on the rivers, everything is able to be seen more clearly. The celebration was once called Chong Pa Rieng, which means “floating lantern of royal ceremony.” It was a Brahman festival to worship the Gods. However, when the Thai people converted to Buddhism, they kept this ceremony because of its cultural heritage and altered it to worship the footprint of the Buddha on Nammathanati river beach in India.

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“Loi” in English means “floating”, while “Krathong” translates to “decoration”. The tradition of floating Krathongs along the river specifically was started by Nag Noppamas, who was the favorite concubine of the Sukhothai king. She made large, lotus shaped Krathongs, and the king floated them along the river. He made it law from that point on, that the kings of Siam were to keep this tradition to worship the footprint of the Buddha on Nammathanati River.

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Traditionally, the Krathong are made from the trunk of a banana tree, or a spider lily plant. Today it is more common for Krathongs to be made of bread or styrofoam. Styrofoam is often banned because it is not biodegradable and cannot be eaten by fish. The floats are decorated with banana leaves folded in elaborate shapes, incense sticks and candles. On the night of the full moon, Thai people launch their Krathongs on a river, canal or pond and make a wish.

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There is also a Lanna (Northern Thai) festival known as Yi Peng. In this celebration, sky lanterns (Khom Loi) are launched into the air. They look like large groups of Jellyfish. These lanterns are usually made from rice paper or other thin fabric, which a candle is attached to. The lantern will float into the air because of the hot air trapped inside the lantern when the candle is lit. The Lanna people will also decorate their homes, gardens and temples with “Khom Fai” which are paper lanterns that do not float. These lanterns are very detailed in shape. There are also lanterns that hang from sticks and are carried around. These are called “Khom Thue”.

Yi Peng was traditionally celebrated on a full moon of the 2nd month of the Lanna calendar, but is now celebrated during Loi Krathong, as a part of the large festival in Chiang Mai. Chiang Mai is the ancient capital of the former Lanna Kingdom. The result of both holidays being celebrated at the same time is an awesome display of candles, lights, lanterns and decorations filling the waters and the skies.

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One Loi Krathing festival website provides this list of reasons for celebrating:

  1. To ask for forgiveness Pra Mae Khongkha because we use and drink water. Moreover, we often throw rubbishes and excrete wasted things in the water.
  2. To worship the footprint of the Buddha on Nammathanati River beach in India.
  3. To fly away misfortune and bad things like floating sin- Bhrama ceremony.
  4. To pay respect to Uppakhud whom mostly northern villagers show their gratitude. According to legend, he was a monk who was supernatural to kill Mara.

According to Wikipedia, the official reasons for Thanksgiving are as follows:

It has been an annual tradition since 1863, when, during the Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed a national day of “Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens”. This was after the day had already been an American tradition since the first pilgrims feasted with over 90 Native Americas, to give thanks for their health, safety, and good fortune.

While the specific traditions of Thanksgiving and Loi Krathong/ Yi Peng contrast greatly, the main ideas are complimentary. This last week of November, the people of both America and Thailand will be paying respect to the gift of life, and asking for seconds.