Sunday, December 29, 2013

Looking Back at 2013

2013 was a good year!

Family population explosion- Five new babies
Son's college graduation
 Creative pursuits
Fun adventures
Connections with friends, old and new 
Appreciation for the small things
Gratitude for our many blessings

Wishing a very HAPPY NEW YEAR to you all!!

Friday, December 27, 2013

106!!! Decluttering Goal Reached

I reached my 2013 decluttering goal back in November.
But I was so busy getting ready for company to arrive and the holidays
that I never got around to posting about it.

So here goes:
68. Sorted through my yarn bin and donated ones I won't use in future
69. Sorted through three mountains big piles of papers
70. Shredded a huge mound of personal/financial papers
71. Cleaned out under kitchen sink (And discovered we have a slow leak! Eeeek!)
72-76. Tossed old yucky stuff from kids bathroom cabinets and drawers and
organized all the hotel sample shampoos/lotions into a jar for guest use.

77-82.  Organized and tossed a bunch of old grungy stuff in master bath drawers
83-84. Cleared and sorted dresser tops in son's room and master bedroom
85-86. Cleared and sorted two boxes under beds in kids rooms
87. Sorted and donated unwanted white/cream quilting fabrics
89-90. Packed up two boxes of children's books and mailed them to my daughter

91-97. Sorted, sized and donated clothes from seven dresser drawers
98. Recycled another pile of magazines and catalogs
99- 102. Organized and tossed old junk from four shelves in upstairs cleaning closet
103-105.  Tossed outdated food items from three shelves in kitchen pantry 
106. In December I packed up a box of my Christmas ornaments 
and mailed them off to my niece.
Her very first tree was looking kinda bare, and I had way more than I could use.

So that brings me to a grand total of 106 spaces (drawer, shelf, etc...)
cleaned-up/cleared-out/donated/recycled/organized/decluttered for the year!  
What a liberating feeling to send these things I no longer needed to a new home.

How did you do?

Monday, December 23, 2013


Still, still, still,
He has come, the Holy Child.
With awe and wonder we behold him,
Mary's loving arms enfold him.
Sleep, sleep, sleep,
O, Holy Son of God.
                            - Austrian Carol

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Merry Christmas To You!

Sending wishes for a very
 Merry Christmas
to you!

Monday, December 16, 2013


 Who else besides me collects these little wax Gurley's? 



And you may recall the Gurley nativity and  choirboys (and girls) 
that I've pictured in past posts.

These novelty Christmas candles from the 40's, 50's and 60's really tug at my heartstrings
 and often make their way into my basket when out vintage shopping. 

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Vintage Advent Tree

One of my favorite Christmas decorations is this felt advent tree 
that I hang in my front hallway every year. 

It has been in my family for a very looooong time.
My Mama found it at a church bazaar in the late 60's/early 70's.
It is such a perfect way to help little children count down the days til Christmas.
(The ornaments are numbered 1-25 on the reverse side.)

I'm noticing a few worn spots that need TLC.
So I'll have to perform felt and yarn surgery before I pack it away this year.
I have to keep it in good shape so it will last for another 40 years. 

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Crocheted Snowflakes

I crocheted snowflake ornaments to give to the girls in my book-club.

I found the free instructions here.  
It's a Russian you-tube, with English subtitles. 
(So now I know how to count to six in Russian.)

I used a much thicker yarn (Baby Bee Sweet Delight) and larger hook (F) than she did,
because that is what I had on hand.
My stars ended up being about 7 inches across; a nice size to hang in a window. 

I starched (spray starch) and blocked by lightly pressing them between cloths.
After drying overnight, I sewed a few sequins and beads to the points 
to add a wee bit of sparkle. 

Monday, December 9, 2013

Little Ceramic Tabletop Tree

THIS is what I returned to the vintage shop for.
I've always loved these little ceramic tabletop Christmas trees.

How many of you gals still have one of these?

Monday, December 2, 2013

Green Roof

This pretty little white barn with the green roof caught my eye 
and I had to pull into the drive to take a picture.

It was for sale. 
But, Mr. Garden does not want to move to the country.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wishing many blessings for you and your family.
Happy Thanksgiving!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Back To Greenwood

I headed back over to Greenwood this morning.
That place is overflowing with wonderful Christmas goodies.

See anything you would have brought home?
(I'll have to show you what I purchased in another post.)

Thursday, November 21, 2013

By George, I Think She's Got It!

By George, I think she's got it! 
Ripple crochet, that is.

I've been working with some leftover yarn to try to learn how to zig and zag.
After  messing up and pulling it back out three times
I think I may finally have the hills and valleys figured out.
So, I'll be starting on another baby afghan this weekend.
Now,  to figure out how many sets of 14 chains I'll need....

I like having a cozy project to work on when the weather is cool.
Don't you?

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Invite A Fairy To Come For Tea

Invite a tiny fairy to come for tea.
Then sit back and wait for the fairydust and magic to happen.

* * *
Teacups:   Royal Albert-  Wild Rose and American Beauty
Tiny Teacup- Occupied Japan   (Thank you, Tami!)

Tea Cup Tuesday with Terri and Martha
Tea Time Tuesday with Sandi

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Getting Together

Yesterday I drove to Greenwood, a little town that has several antique/vintage shops
 as well as a pretty tea room.  (With delicious food, I should add.)
Some cute little bits and pieces did come home with me.

But the best part of the day was getting to meet a blogging friend:
Twyla, from Two Crazy Crafters!!

Twyla, you are such a sweetheart.  
Thank you for the soft slippers, inspirational book and tea towel and other goodies! 
How glad I was to have this opportunity to meet you in real life!
Let's get together again soon!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Little Red Riding Hood

Jessica Zemsky,  Whitman 1961

 Another favorite fairytale from my childhood was Little Red Riding Hood.

Boy, did we ever learn not to stop and talk to strangers, after reading this one.

And if it has ears like a wolf and teeth like a wolf, it probably is a wolf.
Not Grandma.

There are so many beautifully illustrated versions of this Grimm story.
Do you recognize any of these?

Elizabeth Orton Jones,  Golden Press 1948

Illustrator identified only as AH,  Brimax Books, 1962
(If anyone has any information about this artist,  please contact me.)

 June Goldsborough,  Whitman 1964

 Frank Aloise,  Abingdon Press 1969
This version is retold by The Gant Sisters and includes several of their songs.  

Anne Sellers Leaf,  Rand McNally Elf Book, 1963

 Wooden puzzles from Sifo and Playskool

* * *
Click here to see my Little Red Riding Hood tea set.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Paperdolls from Tami

I want to show you the paperdolls that Tami (Vintage Connections) gave to me.
Each time we've met in real life, she has arrived with the sweetest gifts in hand.

Baby Grows Up-  Whitman 1955

Aren't these darling?
The cutest little baby paperdolls! 
 I'm old enough to remember wearing clothes very similar to these.

Princess Diana and Prince Charles- Tom Tierney,  Dover Publications 1985

Any other Princess Diana fans out there besides me?
  I remember every single one of the outfits pictured in this book
and can probably even tell you where she was when she wore them.
I still get a lump in my throat when I think of the tragic way her life ended. 

Thank you, Tami,  for these wonderful additions to my paperdoll collection! 
You are too sweet!
And I love them!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

The Goodies That Came Home With Me

Yesterday was so much fun!
I got to tag along on an adventure with Tami from Vintage Connections!
We stopped in at several antique/vintage/retro/gift shops, all of them new to me.
One was so huge, we only got through half of it.
(Yes, I do hope to go back and browse through the other half, very soon.)

I tend to gravitate towards retro/vintage rather than antique;
often things that remind me of my childhood.
So these are the little goodies that came home with me:
Pale blue gingham apron with smocking and ric-rac trim.
Long string of vintage mercury glass beads
Two Christmas tree brooches to add to my collection
Aluminum heart molds
Green and red felt/chenille/spun-head ornaments
Cornflower (Corning Ware) loaf pan 

Thank you so much for making my Saturday so much fun, Tami! 
I can't wait to get together again soon!

* * *

PS- Be sure to check back later this week.
I need to show you the sweet paperdolls that Tami gave to me.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Little Christmas Tree Quilt

I finished one of the Christmas projects I was working on:
A little tree quilt that I will use to display my collection of Christmas tree brooches.

I cut out a muslin triangle and attached strips of green fabric.
Next I added ric-rac and lace trims 
and sewed on the angled side pieces and trunk. 
I cut out a bunch of squares to create the rest of the quilt top,
made my quilt "sandwich", 
top stitched to hold it all in place
and sewed on a binding. 
Beads, sequins and rhinestone buttons added sparkle and shine.

I searched through the Christmas decorations in the basement 
and found my tree brooches.  
There are plenty of empty squares, so my collection has room to grow.
(Santa always puts one in my stocking.)
I can't wait to hang this in the hallway come December! 

Friday, November 1, 2013

Autumn's Brilliance

Autumn's brilliance on display.
Greens melt to persimmon, crimson, copper, 
maroon, rust, citrine, bronze, amber and russet,
while each puff of wind drops hints about the season finale.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Hot Tea and Baking Powder Biscuits

Hot tea and baking-powder-biscuits spread with red-raspberry jam
are the perfect antidote to a gray rainy day.

This Windsor teacup was a gift from my best friend's Mum, in Canada.
She had it in her own teacup collection for years but decided to share it with me.
It coordinates so perfectly with the other forget-me-not teacups that I have.
Isn't it pretty?  I love it!
Thank you, Mrs. C!

* * *

 I guess I should just add the recipe here to show you how easy these are.
It's right out of Betty Crocker's Cookbook, 1978 edition.

Baking Powder Biscuits
1/3 cup shortening
1 and 3/4 cups all purpose flour
2 and 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup milk

Cut shortening into flour, baking powder and salt with pastry blender until mixture resembles fine crumbs.  Stir in just enough milk so dough leaves sides of bowl and rounds into a ball.  Turn dough onto floured surface.  Knead lightly 10 times.  Roll 1/2 inch thick.  Cut with biscuit cutter.  Place on ungreased cookie sheet about 1 nich apart for crusty sides, touching for soft sides.  Bake  in 450 oven until golden brown, about 10 minutes.  Immediately remove from cookie sheet.
Makes about 1 dozen.

Notes from me:  I start checking to see if they are done at about 8 minutes, depending on the size of cutter I use.  I like to serve mine straight out of the oven with butter and jam.  

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Dinos, Bears and Dollies Dress Up For Halloween

Can you help these dinos, bears and dollies dress up for Halloween?

Audrey Christie - Recycled Paper  1983  


 Ambassador Hallmark

Carlton- American Greetings

(You'll find more Halloween paperdolls from my collection here, here and here.)

Monday, October 28, 2013


More sunflowers.
They are everywhere!

These were growing in the weeds and tall grass between two parking garages.
Beauty found in the most unexpected of places.