~Cloches, What’s under yours?~

From ebay, several years ago, I got a set of 3 cloches, a bell shaped, a tall & a smaller one.
This year’s (bell shaped) Autumn cloche on the coffee table…..faux pears, I love these colors! Christmas cloche from a few years back (the tall cloche). Pine cones, stars & red ornaments. I loved this!
These are from past Autumns.These are Spring… nests & eggs, symbolic of Spring….a new beginning. There are onion skins under the eggs in the bottom pic.(small cloche)
I don’t think I’m all that creative with my cloches & I’m feeling that I need to rethink this. Peeking thru the Sunflowers has some beautiful cloches. It never occured to me to display treasures & mementoes ……..While hopping around blogland you’ll see lots of unique cloches & find so much inspiration. Aren’t you glad you do! I love these peeks into others lives.
So now I really want to know, what are you displaying under your cloche?

Des @ Peeking thru the Sunflowers will be selling some of her lovely things on her Friday post. I am lucky to be getting the bunny plates from her post last Friday. You might want to check it out! Second thought, no…don’t check it out…that gives me a better chance!

Edited to add , more cloches here @ Cottage of the Month from Rosemary at Roses Petit Maison. She has hers all dressed up for Halloween.

Here, from Pat @ Back Porch Musings……..hers are so pretty!

Beautiful Mosaics

Isn’t this yard conservatory unique & so beautiful!
If you haven’t already visited Linda at Lindas Blue Gate take a look, you will be amazed at her work. She commented that her dear Mom has Alzheimer’s too, so I visited her web site & saw this beautiful mosaic work called “Pique Assiette.” I emailed her to compliment her work & mentioned that I would love to try my hand at creating these beautiful mosaics. Her reply “You should give mosaic a try it is soooo therapeutic… and really fun.” Hmmmmm ….fun AND therapeutic….yes yes yes!!! How can I learn this? I am self taught. Just start on something small. I use nippers to snip the china. I buy a tub of grout/adhesive…”.Now I’ve added yet another project on my to do list for my retirement.

YES, I got the official word, my retirement will be April 1, 08!!! Whoppee! I feel blessed to have been offered an early retirement.( The company wants to get rid of us & hire younger employees & pay them lots less……..have to be competive in the global market……..) After working at the same company for 29 yrs. I’m ready to retire. My list of things to do after retirement keeps growing & that’s good because I don’t want to get bored!

I can imagine myself setting up a little work area in the unfinished part of our basement snipping my cares away all the while creating beautiful things. Trying to create pieces as lovely as this.
Now I’m definitely on the lookout for beautiful old china. Thank you Linda for allowing me to use your pictures, inspiring me & enlightening me too! Most likely I’ll be emailing you with more questions next year. Thank you Donna for the Halloween tag, I’m looking for the perfect place to display it.

~Our Yardsale~

Saturday’s sale was a success! We had a ball! IT RAINED!!! Rain was not forecasted & everyone was surprised and wet but we persevered! It showered hard for about 10 minutes and then remained cloudy for a bit. Eventually the sun was out & humidity returned.

It was 5 gals at my house & we had tons of stuff to sell. Only 1 was disappointed with her sales but overall it was a success. Here are some shots….this topiary is not really lopsided, just looks that way in this pic. Some of my stuff in the background.

This was Brenda’s stuff. She had things she cleaned out of her attic. Some were very old & the antique dealers were here at 6:30 with their flashlights trying to get stuff very cheaply.
Brenda’s lamps with shades from Longaberger. Rose’s stuff, she is downsizing & had some really great decorating things! I wanted that silver lamp (bottom pic) & the yellow & orange lazy susan, but resisted the urge. I really should have taken more pix…she had beautiful large pieces of art work, a baker’s rack & lots of nice tablecloths.

Roxanne brought her old bike which sold for $5.oo. She was extremely glad to get rid of it.
Some of my stuff., most everything on this table sold.

I didn’t get any shots of Madeline’s things. She had gobs of jewelry & floral arrangements and lovely tops & sweaters.

This was more than a yardsale, it was a way for us to spend some time together just being girls. In our busy lives that’s hard to do. My patio set was set up in the garage & we sat around & chatted between rushes of customers. We drank our way through 3 pots of coffee & ate zucchini bread & bagels in the morning.

Some of our custumers turned out to be long lost neighbors & friends who we invited in for a nosh. At lunch we had chicken salad croissants, peppered brie & crackers, pasta salad, sun chips & a delish & easy tomato salad from Madeline & iced green tea. Too bad I stashed my camera in the cupboard & forgot about it…I should have taken lots more pix.

After the sale we had to hit 2 local thrift shops to get rid of the leftovers…….the first one couldn’t take it all …they were full!

A sale with a group of friends is a great way to spend time socializing & make a little $$ too!

Have a great day!
Of course we bought from each other, we had first dibbs 🙂


Remember that song, “Sign, sign everywhere a sign….”

It’s so true, signs ARE everywhere you look…….

“Blocking up the scenery”” Blowing my mind!”
” Do this, don’t do that…..”

“Can’t you read the signs?” Well, guess not because I have no idea what those arrows mean!

If you really look at the signs, you’ll see what we look at everyday, but don’t really see! SIGNS EVERYWHERE! Do we need all these signs?

Sadly, most of these signs are needed, but do they have to be so ugly? Why can’t signs have toile backgrounds with tassles, or have beautiful mouldings & faux finishes?

I love reading church signs….
And my favorite signs…..

So that’s my take on signs……….speaking of yardsales, some friends & I are busy preparing for one here on Sat. It’s amazing how much a person can accumulate!

Have a great day & be sure to notice all those signs!

~It’s really beginning to feel like Autumn ~

I made this pumpkin topiary a few years ago. A friend had a whole field of pumpkins & told us to come & get some….so we did. You just put a rod or sturdy stick through the pumpkins to hold them……take the stems off the bottom ones. It’s really easy. I trimmed it with a faux leaf garland & some grapevine……I’ve since painted the urn black. This year I probably won’t make another one.

I’ve added a fall arrangement to my ever growing collection of blue & white. Most are pieces from yardsales. I’m not really a blue person but I really love these pieces all grouped together.
Here’s another yardsale piece……a tiered stand, all decked out for Fall.

I put my sorry old fall wreath on the front door….it’s pathetic! I’d love to do this….. Isn’t this wonderful! It’s from Nell Hill’s……Mary Carol Garrity……I love this!
Is having a mirror on the front door considered good Feng Shui ??????

~Nature’s clothes Dryer~

Did you ever hang your laundry outside on a line?
When my kids were small I didn’t own a dryer & so everything was “hung out.” I loved hanging the clothes out on the line…..dozens upon dozens of diapers! I was too poor to buy disposables & can’t remember if they even existed back then. Everything smelled so fresh, clean & crisp when it was dry. Last Saturday I hung my sheets out & put them right back on the bed. They were heavenly! Now that’s nesting!

No real clotheslines are allowed in our development so I have a retractable type. That’s OK, since I’m a bit spoiled by having a dryer, I rarely hang things out anymore.

The Amish hang all their clothes on lines outside.(Check out these wonderful photos) The lines are on some type of pulley system. You can stand in one spot while hanging clothes & move the line……up, up, up into the air go the clothes.

While I was hanging my sheets I was thinking about the Amish clotheslines I often see in Lancaster county. I have yet to spy any leopard print sheets hanging on an Amish line….wouldn’t that be something!

Amish laundry photos & more here.

~Ugly Potting Bench Redo~

Before…..full of junque.After………..I gave it a black wash with craft paint & Voila!….. still lots of things, but now a spot with a purpose.

I had this potting bench in my craft room. It was holding knickknacks & stuff, really serving no purpose. Now I have a pretty spot for wrapping gifts & packages & holding ribbons, of which I have tons….lots more than pictured here!
Here’s how I used the chicken wire I found at a yardsale…… added it to the back to hold cards, addresses or notes. Scissors are hanging on hooks & the drawers are big enough to hold my note cards, tags, markers etc!

The front is skirted with scrap fabric & hides tissue paper, bags & boxes. I’m happy that this project is done! We’re having a yardsale in 2 weeks….I need to do some serious decluttering, especially in this room.

One woman’s junque is another woman’s junk! Ah well……..

~Hannah & the Mustard Seed Necklace~

Hannah was the woman who cared for my brother & me when my parents worked. While I own no photos of Hannah, her memory is etched deeply in my mind. Let me describe her……

She was short and slightly chubby with a mildly unkempt appearance. Her hair was straight, short, grey and white and occasionally had a purplish tint. My mind still hears the sound of her as she tries to rid her mouth of tiny tobacco bits from her unfiltered Camels. I see her continually hoisting up her bosom and adjusting her bra straps.

Her only job was to watch over us, but she did so much more….cleaning, cooking, washing and ironing. I loved it when she would let me dampen the clothes & iron bra straps, pillow cases & handkerchiefs. Remember those days?

When Hannah was there, our home was sweetly scented. Warm rice pudding with cinnamon, tapioca with fresh peaches, my favorite spice cake, waffles dripping with butter & confectioners sugar, were some treats she often made.

If we were sick, her old fashioned remedies were better than any prescription. Oil of Clove & Vicks Vaporub cured just about anything. She’d turn the lid of the Vicks jar upside down & place it on a warm stove burner. After the Vicks melted, our chests, backs & temples were gently massaged with warm Vicks & we were tucked tightly in bed, already beginning to feel better.

She was a part of our family & she always wore a mustard seed necklace. Hannah never seemed to be a religious woman and although she told me the Bible verse many times, as a child I didn’t appreciate the significance of what it meant.

Hannah has long since passed on & that time was so long ago, but I wonder today how she got the necklace, why she wore it and what it meant to her.

In 2002, I was deeply mourning the loss of my beloved pet Lhasa Apso, Kira. Only a few days had passed since Kira was gone & my husband & I were in a jewelry store having a watch repaired. As most women will, I browsed the brightly lit cases of sparkly gems & I saw it……a mustard seed necklace! I hadn’t see a necklace like that for so many years. Immediately my eyes welled & tears streamed down my face as I choked back sobs.

Back in the car I let loose the sobs as I tried to explain my behavior to my baffled husband.

In the store, seeing that necklace, I was engulfed by a tidal wave of emotion. Grieving the loss of my pet & flooded with memories of Hannah, grieving that she too is gone.
“If you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”

The next day my husband handed me a small box, inside was the mustard seed necklace.

I don’t know what the necklace meant to Hannah, but what it means to me, words could never express. It’s such a tiny reminder of the Greatness of Our Lord. Believe in God and don’t worry about what you can and cannot do. A mustard seed is so tiny, yet as it grows it produces a huge tree, as faith will also.

Matthew 17: 19-20, Luke 17: 5-6

I’ll never forget these verses and I’ll always treasure my necklace.

Hannah’s legacy to me…… the mustard seed & the memories. Praise God!

~Little family cookout~

Here are some shots from our Labor Day cookout. MOM…….she’ll be 78 on Wednesday.
Me & Mom.
My MIL Catherine, soon to be 91. She looks fantastic!
Me & Catherine. This pic was so dark & I tried to lighten it up but it looks better in black/white.
It was a simple cookout, burgers & dogs, Catherine made macaroni salad. She is still a great cook! H’s daughter made beans that were really good. We had bread & butter pickles, tomatoes of course and a chocolate cake from Walmart for dessert.

 The kids loved the chocolate cake!

Here’s g’pa & the kids playing battleship. Notice Sam’s wings, she was a fairy!

That’s our little Labor Day cookout. I felt good about getting Mom out, but it takes a lot out of me as she can hardly walk now & needs help eating. She still has a quick wit and always has a snappy reply, but says the same things again & again. Each time I must act as if it’s the first time I heard it. God, please bless my dear Mama.


~Market & Yardsaling again~

PEACH PIE! If you stare at this long enough you’ll start to salivate….doesn’t it look absolutely delish. We were out early on Fri. morn & stopped at a local Farmer’s market. I didn’t buy a pie, but I wanted to. This market has recently moved into a different building & has been completely made over. There is even a beautiful restaurant on the 3rd floor which features a cigar room. We walked through & I was amazed at the tasteful decor. I hope to have a meal there soon.Yardsaling again! I hadn’t been able to get out lately so I was due. I came upon a “barn sale” …………
there was so much to see! The man had 6 daughters & apparently could not get rid of anything! This barn was loaded with piles & boxes of all kinds of stuff…. pocketbooks, designer clothes, sequined costumes from dance classes. See the witch, I got her there. The prices were $2 a bag, $5 a box!

I was hoping to find some fall/Halloween decorations & I sure did. The witch’s hat & cape are from the barn sale. A great find to wear on Halloween to scare the trick or treaters. Old suitcases ($3) are great to store things, like photos, treasured letters, ribbons etc. Soak some cotton balls in vanilla & leave in the suitcase for several days, the musty smell will disappear.

The picture was just $1, & I have the perfect spot for it in the guestroom. The lamps were $2 apiece, I got them for the shades & the Santa I’ll use at work when we have our yearly Christmas fundraiser. So, I’ve had my yardsale fix for awhile, now on to more projects. I almost forget, I found a whole roll of nicely aged chicken wire (.25) that I have plans for……more about that later.

We’re having a family cookout today, Hope EVERYONE has a GREAT Labor Day!