Friday, July 31, 2009

When Summer Comes To Call!

When Summer Comes to Call

When summer comes to call on me

I spread a blanket set for tea,

Invite the birds, the squirrels, and pups

to share my English china cups.

They scamper in by one’s, by two’s.

They wear their finest coats and shoes.

They come from bushes and from trees

and look as fancy as you please.

Along the garden’s edge we’ll play

and linger there the whole long day.

We’ll watch for butterflies and bees,

enjoy a tender whispering breeze.

Each guest will sing their own sweet song

some chirping short, some whistling long.

A few will bark, others will chatter.

We’ll raise a free and joyous clatter.

We’ll pat the snowballs on the vine,

pretend it’s winter for a time.

Then nod at all the little faces—

pansies pouting in their places.

We’ll thread green ivy in our hair,

braid dandelions for jewels to wear.

We’ll pluck a daisy just to see

if I love them and they love me.

We’ll stay all day and into night

to see the fireflies shed their light.

We’ll count the stars up in the sky

and watch the moon pass slowly by.

And not until the shadows all—

the ones quite short and those quite tall—

have disappeared into the night

will any of my friends take flight.

For celebrations such as this

provide the very sweetest bliss.

Then, when it’s time to go, we’ll say

we’ve had the most enchanting day.

A day, with wonder, we’ll recall

when autumn’s leaves begin to fall.

A day we will remember long

when winter storms with winds so strong.

And even still when spring draws near,

we’ll think of summer’s time of year.

It’s certain that we’ll all agree:

When summer calls it’s time for tea.

I’ll bake sweet biscuits, some with seeds,

and some for those with special needs.

When flowers bloom on bush and tree,

then once again we’ll meet for tea.

Bareback Riding in a Pink TuTu!

I just love this vintage painting as found in the Instant Memories Book Children. The soft pastels are gorgeous and tell a story all their own!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Fabulous Primitive Folk Art!

I am honored and thrilled to accept this Uber Award from my friend Benedetta! But you must see her amazing art blog to see why I'm so thrilled! Her primitive folk art is unique, beautiful, fun, and totally inspiring. Take a look and you'll be delighted! I promise!

According to Benedetta, the Uber Amazing Blog Award is a blog award given to sites that inspire you, make you smile and laugh, give amazing information, and are a great read. While I'm delighted to accept this award, I think these attributes even more describe her wonderful blog! Take a look and you'll see what I mean!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Wish You Could Fly?

Here's a beautiful 1942 illustration from the stunning children's cloth book, Pretty Pussies by Sam'l Gabriel & Sons, NY. Don't you just know exactly how this little kitten feels? I do!

Have a Peaceful Day Everyone!

Outside my creative room window, golden finches come and go. White hydrangeas, puffed and pure gently follow each breath of wind. And I, captured by their beauty, am held spellbound. 

Have a peaceful day, everyone! And thank  you all for your kind observations, thoughts, and friendship. They mean the world to me!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Feathers, Kid Gloves & Laces!

Another great little silhouette to share with you today! I just can't get enough of these fascinating vintage cards! How about you?

We Had Such Wonderful Adventures Together!

Playing dress-up was the best of fun all summer long when school was out! Our mothers let us wear their grown-up high heels, hats, and purses. And we were as stylish as can be!
As pre-teens, we walked to school together every day. It was a mile up the hill and a mile back down in the afternoon. But the walk was never long for we had so many things to talk about. We talked about movie stars, our teachers, and our dreams for the future.
As teenagers we spent every morning outdoors in summer and shared classes in school in winter. Gail was my best friend. I loved her dearly. As an adult, she became the bank manager of our small town. I married and moved away but my caring for her never stopped. Gail passed away this past weekend and I am stunned. I knew better, but I wanted to believe that we had forever.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Welcome to My World Where I Work & Play!

Thank you, Karen of My Desert Cottage for putting together this exciting event!
I'm delighted to participate in this fun-filled day of
sharing studios, work spaces, rooms where we bloggers create.

Thanks for visiting me today! I'd love if you'd leave me a comment!
Then, be sure to dash off and see all the other studios at My Desert Cottage.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Rose Tea Cottage - A Lovely Place to Visit!

I'm honored to have received this beautiful award from the Duchess of High Tea at Rose Tea Cottage. Rose Tea Cottage is as lovely as it sounds and I invite all of you to make a visit. There you will find not only a glorious rose-covered cottage filled with amazing beauties but also the links to several other stunning blogs! Take a moment to visit! Enjoy!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Ten Things About Me!

My friend Jordiegirl from the United Kingdom has sent me this lovely award and I'm thrilled to accept it! Thanks so much for thinking of me. Now I must tell you 10 things about me that you might now know, so let's see...

1) I love movies, films, and plays! In fact, I have acted in plays. One of my favorite roles was playing "Lulu" in Harold Pinter's The Birthday Party.

2) I have a red squirrel living in my garage and I'm trying to convince my husband that he should be allowed to stay there.

3) I've enjoyed having collections for many years and currently have a passion for vintage greeting cards and their beautiful boxes.

4) I love the color aqua!

5) I recently finished reading Geraldine Brooks' novel Year of Wonders, a novel about the plague which I found to be riveting!

6) I have a granddaughter who returned last week from two years in the Peace Corp in Jordan; she is headed for grad school at Johns Hopkins.

7) My grandson, her brother, is a junior in the Harvard School of Dentistry & Medicine.

8) Truly, I would rather craft than cook...any day! (Yet, I collect vintage cookbooks...go figure!)

9) I once worked for a national craft company designing patterns for items to make on looms.

10) I wrote my first story when I was eight years old. I used my grandfather's upright typewriter and typed with one finger. My mother, bless her, saved the original and I still have it!

Well, that's it. I'd like to give this award to my daily followers whose blogs I tremendously enjoy visiting. They fill my life with interesting new ideas, stories of their lives both like and unlike mine, and make me realize how much I value their friendships. Thank you all for being my wonderful friends!

Amazing Grace, How Sweet the Sound!

Outside my window sings the sweetest little wren you've ever encountered. His song can be heard throughout our home throughout the day and I love to know he's near.

Interestingly, he used to live at our house but moved next door after I explained to the young mom and her children that what they were hearing each day (in my yard) was a wren. They went right out and bought a bigger better wren home and he moved in with them. I was a bit sad that he left the home we'd provided but then I realized he was coming back every single day to visit in the lilac bushes outside my window. Nature is full of wonders!

Well, I'd been thinking about blogging about my little wren when, yesterday, what should I find at a garage sale but this beautiful little figurine. I almost didn't buy it but picked it up only to discover that it was a music "box"...the theme "Amazing Grace"! Now you know what I was thinking, don't you? That old saying which I thoroughly believe to be true: There are no coincidences, only God working anonymously. He was at it again, don't you think!

It's a Small Small World!

Does the name Regina Benjamin ring a bell? It did for my son Paul when recently he was reading the news and saw her name. But he'll tell you his own story, if you'll just pop on over to his blog Dental Nation and take a look at his post "Sherpa Nell." (The above picture was taken a few years ago when my son Paul was participating in a Christian mission to help the children of an orphanage in Flores, Honduras.)

An excerpt from Paul's post:
"We drove to Flores, a small mountain village with one church and a boys' and girls' school and orphanage run by a Christian non-profit organization. The tiny cement block "clinic" building would be our office for the next two weeks. We unloaded all of our supplies, arranged our dental and medical treatment areas, and prepared medications for the first day of service."

Friday, July 17, 2009

A Box of Friendship!

Yesterday, Jim and I drove up to our home after attending a meeting and there on our porch steps sat this interesting looking box.

"Looks like you won again," Jim laughed. (He likes to tease me about my eBay and Etsy purchases!)

"No, I'm sure I don't have anything coming. I haven't ordered anything for a couple of weeks." I was completely surprised to see the parcel there.

Once inside the house, I couldn't wait to see the contents. And I couldn't have been more thrilled! That box held FRIENDSHIP in the form of three beautiful vintage greeting boxes from my dear friend Laurie of Indulge Your Shelf. She wrote that she'd seen them at a flea market and thought of me. Well, you all know how crazy I am about vintage boxes. And I can tell you that I not only loved the boxes but was touched deeply by the thought that Laurie had done this for me.

Thank you Laurie! You are an amazing friend and your thoughtfulness is beyond measure!

Vintage Quilt Top - Name the Pattern!

My friend Laurie of Indulge Your Shelf recently found some gorgeous vintage quilt pieces and was wondering what the pattern was called. I think this may be the same or, at least, a similar pattern. But what is it called? Anyone?

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Three of a Kind!

I just love these old stereoptic slides! Surely the photographers loved putting them together. 

The colors are always so beautiful; note the pastel dresses as they graduate from one girl to another from light to dark and POP against the lovely countryside! 

And the subjects are just as sweet as sweet can be! Almost every little girl wants to either have a horse or ride one! This photographer captures the heart of girlhood as it once was...and probably hasn't changed that much through the years!

Love Dogs!

I have loved dogs all my life! This little pup was named "Snowy" by me because his fur was white as snow. He came to us as many of our dogs did in my growing up a stray. Every so often, a little dog would show up in our neighborhood, no collar, no tags, just soft warm fur to pet and love.

Then, I'd work on my parents. First Mom. "Can I keep him? Please! Please!"

"Ask your dad."

Then Dad. "Can I keep him? Please! Please!"

"Who's going to feed him? Clean up after him?"

"I will. I'll do it all!"

Once in a while—not always—but once in a while, Mom and Dad would talk it over and say, "Yes!"

As you can see from the photo, Snowy was a fabulous "Yes!" and, oh, how I loved him!

(In these tough times, the heartbreak is that many pets are being left behind by families who can no longer afford to care for them. Please click here to see all the wonderful pets who need homes. Can you give a pet a home?)

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Underground Railroad Sampler Quilt!

A while ago, I stitched this Underground Railroad quilt top from blocks I made through a local quilt shop's sampler workshop, based on Eleanor Burns' Quilt in a Day. I loved using the reproduction civil war fabrics and the patterns which were mostly new to me. And I thoroughly enjoyed the lecture series supported by the shop.

A local woman and friend of mine, Karen Simpson, who teaches African American quilting and who also lectures in our area came to the quilt shop and brought her own Underground Railroad quilt made on consignment for the University of Michigan Botanical Gardens show that year. She talked about the various myths and beliefs accorded the patterns belonging to the Underground Railroad blocks and provided a thoroughly fascinating journey of her own quilting adventures.

And the WINNER Is..!

Thank you all for participating in my GIVEAWAY to celebrate the opening of my ETSY SHOP! I so appreciate your interest and support! Pam at Treasures n-Textures whose name was chosen through a random drawing today is the winner of the 25 piece set of all original, all different 5"x5" feedsack squares! Congratulations, Pam! I hope you'll love them!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

A Miniature Gift: Birds of Ontario!

I was so surprised and thrilled to receive this sweet gift yesterday from my friend Doreen! Thank you so much, dear friend!

Doreen is a miniaturist whose work with tiny pieces is absolutely amazing (you must take a look at her blog) and she has shared a few of her creations with me! These tiny books and potato chips are so small they are hard to see in the larger picture but in the close-up I added two of my tiny collie figurines to give a bit of perspective on size and it's easier to tell just how small the beautiful books actually are!

And not only is the book Birds of Ontario in miniature it also has several actual pages from the original book. I could hardly believe this when I opened it up to see the inside pages. (I'm afraid my photos do not do this justice but take my word for it, this is awesome!)Doreen lives on a beautiful river in Wasaga Beach, ONTARIO where she views these beautiful birds right in her back yard every day. What a great job, Doreen! Brilliant!

Tibbets Theater of Coldwater!

Having recently discovered this vintage photo by Gowdy Bros of Coldwater, Michigan, I began to wonder if this beautiful young woman was one of the visiting actresses who performed at the local theater, The Tibbet Opera House back in the 1800's? She certainly looks like she could have been! Many young ladies of her time graced the stage of the Tibbets!

In the late 1800’s and early 1900’s, Tibbits Opera House was a regular stop along State Route US 12 for traveling performers moving between Detroit and Chicago. The theatre hosted Vaudeville acts in the early days and later many famous entertainers including P.T. Barnum, Ethel Barrymore, The Glenn Miller Orchestra, and more.

This theater, located not more than an hour from my home is one I have visited on occasion and enjoyed. The historic stage and building has many stories to tell...a lovely adventure back in time. The construction of the opera house was financed by Barton S. Tibbits, in 1882 but, unfortunately, he spent his entire fortune on the project and died penniless. Still he and his work will long be remembered!

"In the shimmering glow of 306 gas lights, Tibbits Opera House greeted its first opening night audience on September 21, 1882. Parking horses and buggies at the Livery Stable, theatre patrons, dressed in their finest, entered the town's new treasure under the gaze of a gathered crowd.

They were welcomed by Barton S. Tibbits, then ushered through leather covered wood doors into the performance area. Elegant red Brussels' carpet softened their steps, and "grand opera chairs," upholstered in "dark Cardinal plush" waited, while beneath a dome resplendent with painted cherubs, a large chandelier scattered sparkles of reflected light over all. Dominating the scene was a grandly ornate Proscenium Stage with elegant opera boxes situated within the massive tin and plaster arch. Elegance was paired with superb acoustics, and behind the closed curtain, actors and crew waited to present "Maid of Arran." After remarks by local dignitaries, Tibbits was summoned onstage with tumultuous applause.

Today Tibbits is busy year round. Professional summer stock and children's theatre draw large summer crowds. Winter events include concerts, Community Theatre, Christmas shows, recitals, children's theatre, and professional productions" (Tibbets).