Sunday, March 28, 2010

Busy Birthday Weekend

I'm thankful to have had a fabulous past few days. Last Wednesday, Mom and I went to a very fun estate sale where among other things (another post perhaps), I got this clear box full of trim. The items in the sale were from all over the world, and I can't help thinking that some of this trim was from afar. Some pieces are quite old...others not so. I was compelled to get it, so I did--couldn't resist.

Friday was my birthday, and I was super spoiled by my family that day with out to breakfast, time in Amish country, a trip to an antique store to get some fun sparkly goodies, and a nice evening of mini-golf and out to dinner with my husband, children, parents, and grandmother--oh, with a lemon cake afterward. I received lots of nice "tea" things including an Alice in Wonderland tea tower full of different kinds of yummy teas, a teapot napkin holder that Dad found in Amish country, and a much needed tea kettle from hubby and the kids complete with fruit on it. Was I spoiled!
Yesterday, Mom and I got up early and went to another estate sale and then to the annual bead show in Madison. My feet were hurting terribly by the end of the day after standing in so many lines all day, but it was all worth it and great fun. I bought some beads I have been looking for months in colors I haven't been able to find easily, so I'm a happy camper. There is so much creating now to do. I'm eager to start up again in earnest!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Been Spring Cleaning

It's that time of year. It has been nice to have some sunny days to hang out curtains. I love the fresh scent of hung-out laundry (besides, it helps with those wrinkles). It's amazing how washing can change the look...the color even...of curtains. They now look fresh and crisp and clean. We have all enjoyed the clean feeling around here. There is plenty more to do, but cleaning the curtains and window trims is always a nice place to start.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Vintage Violets Treasury

I'm thankful to have snagged an Etsy treasury tonight entitled "Vintage Violets" ---full of beautiful violets and luscious colors of purple and violet. If you'd like, click on the link above to visit the treasury to check out the items more closely. Enjoy!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Lollishops Romantic Homes Ad--May 2010

I have been eagerly awaiting the May 2010 issue of Romantic Homes to come out since I participated in a Lollishops ad in it. Well, the magazine arrived in my mailbox yesterday, and I think the ad looks great! I'm thankful that the little cupcake brooch goes so well with the colors of the ad and am very pleased. Sadie did a good job. Thanks for the opportunity, Sadie!


I think lockets are interesting little things. I like the idea of wearing a delicate container close to one's heart to fill with something special and intimate--a lock of hair, a picture or two, a little secret token of love for someone--that others may look at only if given permission.
I was excited to find some locket bases on which to create, and I've finally finished one...just this morning in fact (and have listed it in my Etsy shop). I thought the silver tone and the softness of the light pinks and whites would look nice together, and I'm pleased with how it turned out. I have other bases with which to create and may work on more later this week. I imagine this going to a mother with two daughters--thus, the two pink flowers--but, of course, it could find a home simply to someone who likes it.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

So, Who IS the real St. Patrick?

This may come as a surprise...but Patrick has nothing to do with drinking green beer, finding leprechauns, or chasing snakes out of Ireland! He was an actual person who lived between 389-465 AD (though the year of his death is debatable). It is believed that he died on March 17, 465--that is where March 17 comes in. He was originally from Scotland (Roman Briton as it was known as) and when he was around 16 was kidnapped by the Irish Druids to become a slave in Ireland...he is quoted as saying, "...our deservings; for we had gone away from God and had not kept his commandments, and were not obedient to our pastors, who admonished us to our salvation." He was converted to Christ (not to a church) while a slave for six years then escaped to return to his home in Briton where he studied the Bible (there is no record of formal ecclesiastical training). Much against his family's wishes, he returned to Ireland around the age of 43 to be a missionary. Like Paul of the Bible, he did not marry. He established "monastaries" to train others to serve Christ. Over his 30 years of ministry thousands were converted to Christ (note again...not to a church--to salvation in Christ), and he wrote The Confession (a "confessor" in Patrick's day was one who had risked his life by openly following the Lord Jesus Christ). The beautiful country of Ireland was evangelized, and he is credited with starting over 300 local churches. After his death and during the 6th and 7th centuries, Ireland came to be called the "Island of Saints." The Catholic church has "sainted" him as one of their own, but Patrick made no mention of the Catholic church during his writings, he is buried in what is now the church yard of a Protestant cathedral in Downpatrick, Ireland, and Catholicism was actually introduced to Ireland over 100 years after Patrick and was not firmly established in Ireland until around 1172. Patrick wrote that he had "...a care and a great anxiety for the salvation of others..." and referred to himself as a "fisher of men." His writings are interwoven with quotations from Scripture. Mmmm, the life of the real Patrick is quite different from the thoughts of most people today. He sounds like he was quite a servant for the Lord, and I'm thankful to know about him.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Another Embellished Perfume Bottle

This one took awhile to put together, but I'm pleased with the end result. I had this little Coro brooch featuring a lady--I think she looks very elegant and French--that I couldn't sell because part of it was damaged. I don't really like to sell a signed piece unless it is all there. Anyway, it fit perfectly on this little crystal perfume bottle and made a nice focal point for it. The top part is a very elegant rhinestone earring that had fallen apart. I then glued on a "pearl" bead that coordinates with the "pearls" that are staggered with rhinestones surrounding the lady. I listed it in my Etsy store this morning. Hope you like it!

I've Been Waiting All Winter....

Peeping out my laundry room window...just waiting...then...I saw them! How exciting! Spring is officially here. Happy spring, everyone!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Finding New Blogs to Visit...

I've lately discovered a few new blogs to visit regularly (as time permits, of course). There is certainly not a lack of creative people with beautiful ideas! I love doing swaps...but need to space them out and be choosy due to expenses and time and such. I joined Jenny's Petite Basket Swap (which is unfortunately closed now) and am having fun collecting tiny treasures for this swap (more on this on another post). Jenny of Fated Follies has a beautiful blog and is definitely visit worthy.

Also, Robin's Egg Blues is full of pretty buttons and lots of sparkles--beautiful blog! There is also a giveaway (see picture on the side bar if you'd like to enter) full of gorgeous things.

Ah, so many pretty little time...but worth the time when spent!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

A Delightful Discovery Indeed

When I was a young , I was promised by someone that when I got older I would receive a set of dishes with dainty scattered pink roses all over them. For years I would dream about those dishes and how many Betty Crocker points it would take to save up for rose patterned silverware to match. Unfortunately I never was to receive those dishes.

Before my husband and I got married 20 years ago, my mother and I were on a quest--with a budget, of course--to find dishes for our new household. I had given up on those rose dishes by then, and instead decided I wanted to have a "fruit" inspired kitchen (not literally fruit, but a take off of the "fruit of the Spirit" as is found in Galatians 5: 22-23 " But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law."--depicting what someone who has put their faith and trust in the Lord Jesus should be like). I thought green backgrounds with bright fruit could always be fresh and pretty in a kitchen not to mention easily updated and enhanced. At the time I couldn't find a set of dishes to fit this theme...and expensive china was out of the question. So, Mom and I decided on a rather utilitarian set of ivory "stoneware" looking dishes that were very economical and practical and would go with my fruit theme along with green glasses and fruit napkins. I had hoped to replace them within a few years--perhaps if I broke a few I would NEED to replace them...but, alas, they have been durable and faithful all of these years through kids and moves and mishaps and klutzy moments. I would dream of china and see fruit patterns by Lenox and others and sigh at their beauty and despair at their prices. Some "everyday" fruit dishes have come out by Corelle, but they just never "spoke" to me.

I confess, however, that through the years, although I have greatly enjoyed my fruit theme, I have always had a heavy tug towards roses and have SO enjoyed the rose trend over the last many years. There are just so many pretty rose china patterns out there that I have seen in magazines and in other people's kitchens. *sigh*

Well, the day before yesterday Mom and I were at a thrift store and I saw these...
There are two plates of each size--the larger plates were $1 each and the smaller were $.50 each! How could I resist? I tried not to do a little jig right here at the thrift shop for excitement. They are in perfect condition, and I bought all four.
As you know, I already have a teacup and saucer and dessert plate in the Old Country Roses pattern (as well as a mug from which I'm drinking tea right now) and teacup and saucer in the "Ruby Lace" pattern. Now, I say this is a "delightful" discovery because the thought occurred to me that fruit or no fruit I could be on a very thrifty and only budget-friendly quest to find more of these plates, one-by-one if necessary, to build up a set of dinner and dessert plates via thrift shopping or on Ebay or garage sales and the like. I don't need all of the extras, but a set of these for company would truly be a dream...a dream come true.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Vintage Jewelry on Perfume Bottles--Repurposed and Glitzy

Remember the estate sale I blogged about a few weeks past with the box of rhinestones and broken vintage jewelry bits that I bought? I'll show you the picture again to remind you.
I have been busy since--and making a huge mess in the process--organizing that box. Pieces of jewelry and rhinestones have literally covered one whole counter top in our kitchen while I've been working on it in my spare time. (Thank you, Honey, for being so patient!) I've been sorting rhinestones, seeing what vintage pieces may be salvaged, organizing orphan earrings, and seeing what needs some repair and/or reworking to use in something pretty. Many rhinestones and faux pearls were gone in many pieces to begin with or were removed by the previous owner of this box. Well, I'm actually making progress. I had purchased a little blue perfume bottle at a thrift store for my grandmother (had previously posted about that too), and decided to make my first try at decorating something with that. Here is the result...
I was pleased and so was Gram. The vintage bits really perked up the bottle and made it prettier. I had purchased some quality little crystal perfume bottles a while back, and thought last week that they would be great things to put some broken jewelry pieces on--and the bottle at the very top and the one below are the result. I like perfume bottles anyway, as you know, so these were perfect for this project. Without a question these are one of a kind items!
The rhinestones may not all match, there may be a chip or scratch on a piece...but I think that adds to the charm of these repurposed vintage jewelry bits. These glitzy little pieces of jewelry certainly shouldn't be thrown out just because they are showing signs of their age!
I'll be adding the crystal perfume bottles to my Lollishops/Etsy shops soon, and I'm working on a few more. This has been such fun, and I've enjoyed this greatly

Saturday, March 6, 2010


Hubby and I were at the grocery store the other day and saw all sorts of bundles of asparagus for $1.29. I looked at him and he at me, and we shrugged and decided, "Well, why not?" (a $1.29 experiment wouldn't break the bank). Our only prior experience with asparagus was from the can years ago--and we weren't impressed. Of course, I had no idea how to cook it so looked around on line and followed this simple suggestion: 1) Wash and break off asparagus at natural breaking point on the stalk (didn't know there was such a breaking point--but it worked wonderfully), lay out in pan not overlapping, drizzle with olive oil, add salt and pepper, and cook for 10-15 minutes (I did 13) in a 400 degree F oven. Wallah! It was wonderful! **shock** We concluded that the taste reminded us of something between green beans and fresh spinach, and Hubby and the two kids gave the veggie the "thumbs up". Who would have known we would get out of our peas and green beans rut and be hooked on fresh asparagus?

Thursday, March 4, 2010

A Song in My Mind

Yes, I've had a song rolling around in my mind for the past few days. I think it comes from just finishing watching the BBC version of Emma. My dear hubby bought it for me, and, yes, patiently sat there and watched it with me (though I caught him snoozing a few times!). *sigh* I just LOVE romantic things. We also have the other version of Emma with Gwyneth Paltrow, and I loved the song (which the BBC version unfortunately did not include) "Did you not hear my Lady" from Handel's Tolomeo. Talk about a beautiful, romantic song! YouTube has a moving version of it from Robin Hood (which I haven't watched, so I cannot tell you if it is a good or bad watch). This version of the song is sung by Aled Jones whom I have never heard of before, and it is amazingly beautiful--a worth listen to if you are a romantic as well (just click on the song name above). Mmm, perhaps I'll have to learn the words myself to sing it properly. I might as well since it's in my head anyway.
PS. Thank you Susie V for the great information!!! I tried to find a way to email you but couldn't, so I hope you read this thank you!
; )