Saturday, March 30, 2013

So we decided to love our Peak

Happy Easter!
I'm re-running this post from Easter 2009 -- when we had an impromptu snow storm on Easter morn.  I hope that you enjoy it!

The fact that we live at the foot of Pikes Peak makes our weather very extreme and quite unpredictable at times. I used a technique I'd learned in a poetry class I took recently where you juxtapose the order of words. I think it makes the poetry a bit lighter and playful. What do you think?

So We Decided to Love our Peak
by Laurie Jackson
The mountain made the sky forget
it’s April, and Easter, a day for sun
Down snowflakes dropped, thick and wet,
as up we woke, prepared for fun

“Oh no – snow!” we out loud moaned
our yesterday memories clear and bright
We grumpy groused and crabby groaned
that the weather could change over so night

Mother smiled – she wasn’t worried
She had, of course, a plan in mind
So down we piped and up she hurried
To indoor hide hunt eggs to find

Out she shooed, upstairs we waited
and outside gazed from the windowsill
as snowflakes fell on our garden gated
and landed a landscape soft and still

One by one we started to speak
to murmur how it sure looked nice
So we decided to love our Peak
to take good beauty with bad ice

We upped our chins and had a go
at Easter egg hunting in our pjs,
then rode to church in snow drive slow,
and ahead dreamed to sunny May days

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Fun finds from last week

Picking is such a hard habit to break.  I go out less often now, but I still can't seem to stay away COMPLETELY. I haven't had time to antique or thrift shop this week, but here are a few more things I bought the last time I was out:
I don't know why I wanted this so badly, but I did, so there it is.  It's a metal set of coasters and their lyre-shaped holder in that pretty blue.
I love the patina!
Of course there was the requisite bag of ephemera; this picture of two little ones by a birthday cake sold me!  At first I thought they were twins, but now I'm thinking close siblings.
The bag came with all of this, too...

I really loved this card with its silk ribbon embellishment.
It kind of matches this little half-doll pin cushion.  Now, the tiny red pillow on the right was another antique store find; I called it the bargain of the day at 75 cents.  I think the stamped motif pin in the middle was worth all that and more.  But I found the pin cushion at an estate sale I spied on the way home from the antique store.
I don't often see them in such good condition, and certainly not for the bargain price of $5.  I don't think I've ever seen one priced at less than $15.  I've always wanted one.  Now it's mine!
This little pile of buttons was 50 cents; orange (and also purple) tends to be a hard button color for me to find for crafting, so I grabbed it.
Some more from that estate sale a couple of weeks ago: my husband has been trying to master the art of martini mixing so I picked this colorful 45 in its sleeve for the graphics.
I'm kind of enamored of these lately: they were intended for guest towels but I like to use them to hold paper art.
This one had a fun, leafy design that I'd never seen before.  The base is fitted with green glass.
A friend bought a bunch of wire flower frogs, and shared one of the round ones.  So I had to go looking for my others and discovered...
I have inadvertently amassed a small collection.  (Oops.)
But these two little slide cases were my most cheery finds.
This one is so nice and flat, and came with some nice timeworn ephemera, including tiny numbers that were used to label the slide holders...
and a negative which dates the slides to the 1950s or early 60s..
and a cute brass stamped label.
But look how CUTE this one is!
Little "library catalog" style drawers, and the first two are full of slides that I can't wait to explore.
And its own niftly brass label plate.  I am really into vintage storage these days, are you?

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

In which I am not ready for Easter

I've been seeing lots of Easter-themed decor on blogs lately.  Alas, I'm not doing much this year and am in fact feeling woefully un-decorated.
In years past I did some fun decorating:
 here's a bunny I stitched about 20 years ago from an antique quilt square
my all-time favorite Easter display, using marshmallow bunnies, Easter grass, and plastic eggs in a trifle dish
I don't mind "wasting" the candy -- I couldn't eat a store-bought marshmallow peep or bunny (or any shape) if my life depended upon it!
 a vintage crepe paper egg 
this was the letter "I" of my "SING" banner last year; it's rather Easter-y
a bunny faux confection made by LuLu Kellogg
and the chick I made for her, pulling its egg cart (made from a vintage novelty salt and pepper shaker set)
a paper Easter wall hanging, made from vintage crepe and wall paper
...and a little bird with a vintage blossom in its beak.
Hm.  Okay.  I'm a bit more in the mood now -- how about you?

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Antique sounds

You know how estate sales will usually let unsold items go for 50% off on the last day?  I don't typically go back to get such items, but I made an exception last week to buy this:
a lovely original watercolor of a cathedral in Mexico (I think it's the one in Mexico City.)  It was painted in 1984 by an artist whose signature looks like "J. Hannhauser" or "Hornhausen" or something like that -- but I still need to research him/her.  Can anyone recommend a good art information site, paid or unpaid, that you have used?
I love the colors; at first glance, I thought it was a Parisian scene.
Another thrifty find -- this one purchased from my friend Kathy; it's a lovely wood and wicker basket with a nice, flat base for displaying pretty things.  On it, above, a very cute bird pick that came with the basket.
I've been playing with other things to display on it, like Peter Rabbit pretties...
and this English stainless steel coffee set that is in my Etsy shop; shown with it: a clock that was always in my parents' kitchen.
Also from Kathy, this fabulous box of collars, still in their original waxed paper envelopes!
I have no words to describe the crisp, crinkly sound of those yellowed envelopes; if you love old paper, then you know what I'm talking about!  I had to have them.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Spring, bling, ning...and things

As we are about to embark on our two week Spring Break, my son said on the way to school this morning, "That gopher thing was wrong."
He was referring, of course, to the groundhog; around here, we've had cold weather and are expecting snow for the next few days.
These flowers Dennis came home with yesterday are reminding me there is a fresh, pastel-colored season in sight.
As is this gorgeous necklace that came in the mail from my sweet friend, Angela!
It's her original design and made from amethyst and glass, with a peacock theme.  It is so lovely!  Angela is building a website of the jewelry she designs and makes with her mother -- you can see/shop for some of her beautiful things here.
In other creative news: I recently joined Jeanne Oliver's Creative Community; it's a place to connect and enjoy some of her free online art and business videos; then, if you like you can sign up for one or more of her e-courses.  The one I'm doing is called Building a Creatively Made Business, and I'm really enjoying it so far.  Jeanne teaches, inspires, and encourages, and I've already begun to try some of her tips to revamp my handmade Etsy shop.
Speaking of talented locals -- I was reading Somerset Studio Gallery when some vibrant art caught my eye, and I noticed the name of the artist: Wendy Brightbill.  This is a familiar name because Wendy was my son's Kindergarten teacher.  Now she teaches art, gets published in many of those Stampington magazines, and has a new baby.  She also has a lovely story of her personal creative journey, which you can read on her blog, A Girl and Her Brush.  I'm pleased to have re-connected with Wendy and learn that we run in some of the same creative circles.  Don't you love those "small world" moments?  I do.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

The things you see out junking

Isn't it funny how sometimes when you're picking/shopping, you come across a bunch of items in the same color palette?
The other day I had to bring home this beautiful 1950s Quiltex baby blanket in soft blues and pinks because it was only 50 cents and was in such great condition (no thread pulls!); at the same shop I found a coordinating metal tin and a roll of tulle.  They look so pretty arranged together!
I was estate sale-ing last week and picked up these first day envelopes among someone's stamp collection.  There were boxfuls so I just chose those that struck my ephemera-loving fancy;  I also came across this great vintage Georges Briard hot plate.
It's called a "Hot Butler" and this one is mid century modern-dreamy from its gilded bird motif to its teak handles.  It's now in my shop.
I recently sold those fabulous Briard Grand Opera cocktail napkins, too.  I love anything he did, but this design was especially fabulous!
Before we knew the results of our taxes (insert weeping) my husband and I fell in love with this vintage bar:
It was in an estate sale liquidation shop, and priced to sell at $200.  I didn't even mind the cheesy German tourist scene (Neuschwanstein Castle) on the front!
Look at all that fabulous storage in the back!  I will probably always regret not getting it.  We really need extra glass and bar-paraphernalia space.  Wouldn't it be fun for parties?
Some other stuff I loved but didn't buy: this fabulous green contoured sofa...
a beautiful mohair coat with embroidered sleeves...
a slightly damaged but still lovely sampler...
a mold shaped like a pair of britches!  Is there not endless amusement at junk outlets?