Thursday, July 29, 2010


There is an Altered Art Party going on at the
French Cupboard.
I thought I would join in even though I am not very creative when attempting altered art, but I happen to have my step-great-grandmother's commonplace book from the 1890s to show off.

Are you familiar with Commonplace Books? They are the predecessor of what today we know as altered art. Essentially they are scrapbooks filled with every kind of written word: quotes, letters, poems, tables, obituaries, drawings, etc. Readers, students, etc. used them as an aid for remembering things they had learned. Below is my step-great-grandmother's commonplace book from the 1890s. Always using what she had on hand, she took a previously read book and pasted her notes and clippings on the pages. She then embroidered a new cover for her scrapbook.

Tucked inside the front cover are some clippings that she never found time to glue in, including a news article about some one's suicide.

Tables of Weights and Measures and Marriage Anniversaries

Obituaries and Poems

Cute drawings for inspiration, as she was an artist.


Going through this book has given me a glimpse of a woman I barely knew. My great-grandfather, after being widowed with two young boys, came to Colorado from Maine in the 1880s to start a new life. After his boys were raised, he sent for 'Auntie Evelyn' to come west to be his new wife in 1897. She was considered a spinster at the age of 29 when she was dispatched to Colorado! We have the train ticket that he sent her for her journey. They were married for 41 years until his death in 1938; she lived until 1950 in the West, far from her family and in a place that must have felt so foreign to her.

Just a look into another time and era.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


This week we are getting all new windows in our 25-year-old house. They will be energy efficient, easier to clean, etc. etc. While we are looking forward to having them, we are not looking forward to all of the work involved in getting ready for the installation. Plus, then we will have to get our life back in order!

Everything within three feet of every window must be cleared out. That means this huge receptacle of my dish addiction must be emptied and moved. (When I remembered to take this picture, the top and the top shelf had already been cleared.) Because of the weight involved, this thing is bolted to the wall.

This one, too!!

And, this one.

And, this one.

Well, you know, if you are going to move all of these dishes, you might as well wash them all before you temporarily pack them away.

It's not just the dishes - there is the art work, the furniture, the stuff, stuff, etc. Thank goodness it will not disrupt the kitchen too much.

I'll be back to blogging in a couple of weeks when I get my life back together.

Sunday, July 18, 2010


I'm slowly working on my winter pillow project. Since I've always wanted wool pillows for my living room to use in the winter, I decided I needed an early start to get it done this year. You can check here and here for posts about my efforts so far.

My challenge was to do them 'on the cheap', so I regularly check at the thrift stores for wool clothes or yardage that would be suitable.
My daughter told me one day she was going to make a run to Goodwill to donate some of her work clothes from several years ago. She has been a stay-at-home mom for four years now, and had no use for them any more. I was excited as I told her that was what I always checked for at Goodwill. So, we cut out the middle man and she brought me three wool skirts - two from Ralph Lauren and a Pendleton!
I loved this red plaid, so the wheels began to turn.
The other Lauren skirt had these classic Ralph Lauren leather fasteners on it, so I combined the two skirts to make this pillow.

I'm already thinking about what my next pillow will be!

I'm linking up with Susan at Between Naps on the Porch
for Metamorphosis Monday.

Friday, July 16, 2010


Donna at Funky Junk Interiors
keeps coming up with unusual themes for her Saturday Nite Special party. This week the theme is "Rust". And, of course, I have rust to show off.

This is the biggest hunk of rust in our yard. This grill came with a house that we bought in 1976. That was four houses ago, but it keeps following us around. Not an easy feat as it weighs a ton.

We used to cook the best hamburgers on this grill. It's too rusty, now.

Originally, it was a unit used in public parks.

Here are a couple more things masquerading as garden art (?). This milk can came from my family farm years ago.

I have no idea what this is, but it was in my parent's yard for years and years, and now has been in ours for eons. It's rusty for sure.

Our son, the high school teacher, is spending the summer in Japan living with a family and working in their orchard. Recently, he did a post on his blog,
Saulmon is in Japan
about "Rust". Check it out by clicking here
for some great pictures of rust in Japan.

Be sure to go to Donna's blog, Funky Junk Interiors
for more rusty inspiration.

Thursday, July 15, 2010


How many pieces of brown transferware does it take to fill a large cloche?

I don't know - I stopped at 10.

I'm joining up with Marty at A Stroll Thru Life
and her Cloche Party. Be sure to check it out; I'm sure you will be inspired!

Monday, July 12, 2010


Get in the van, buckle up, Papa has the cash; let's head to the city for a day of fun. The weather is in the cool 70s and the humidity is non-existent. (It is dry Colorado, after all!)

First stop - the beautiful Pueblo Riverwalk area. Get those long legs revved up, Caitlin, for the paddle boats. You know that Wyatt will get distracted with all of that water.

Let's take another spin around the lake in a different boat.

After lunch, we had some time to kill before the Go-kart park opened.

This is always a number one request for a fun afternoon.

Hurry Wyatt, the clouds are building in the West.

Yes, it poured rain on us during the 45-minute ride back home. But, a great time was had by all.

I'm linking up with Susan at A Southern Daydreamer
for Outdoor Wednesday.

Friday, July 9, 2010


The theme on Donna's Funky Junk Interiors Saturday Night Special this week is drawers. I couldn't miss this opportunity to show a couple of my funky drawers. I can't pass up any drawer that in it's past life was handmade or used in a shop or store.

This one has tin sides and a wooden front. I think it must have been used in a store to sell hardware of some kind. Now it stores towels in our guest bathroom.

I love this little unit for its quirky knobs made out of thread spools. Inside of the drawers are little compartments.

Here are a couple more little drawers that, at one time, held bolts and hardware. Their sole purpose now is to just sit there and make me smile!

Be sure to stop by Donna's for more fun drawer inspiration.

Monday, July 5, 2010


In the last few months I have run across several blogs showcasing silhouettes, which got me to thinking that I had some silhouettes SOMEWHERE. It took a couple of months but we finally found them in a box in the garage! They were no longer in frames, and hadn't seen the light of day for years.

We dug through our stash of thrifted frames, cut some down to fit, and gave them one of our favorite finishes (Sherwin Williams Antique Red paint with an ebony stain over it). I knew I wanted oval mats, but didn't want to pay the price for custom, so I checked Hobby Lobby & Michaels for ready-cut; but they never seemed to have three black ones alike. Finally, I just bought three of whatever color and spray painted them black.

This silhouette is of me when I was 15 (in 1954). It was cut at Riverview Amusement Park in Chicago.

The one below is of our son, Mike when he was 3 years old (1971). I love the scherenschnitte cutting that frames this silhouette.

Mike was 6 years old when this one was done by a different artist from above.

And, lastly, this one is of our daughter, Jenni, when she was 2 years old in 1974.

I'm sure enjoying my silhouettes again. Now, I just wish I had some of my grandchildren.

I'm joining Marty at A Stroll Thru Life
for Tabletop Tuesday. Be sure to stop by her blog for so much inspiration.

Thursday, July 1, 2010


My family thinks there is nothing better than Strawberry Shortcake with homemade biscuits.
Personally, you can give me chocolate and nuts any day!

Do you have a preference?

I'm linking up with Michael at Designs by Gollum
for Foodie Friday


Donna at Funky Junk Interiors
for Saturday Nite Special (cooking section).

Have a glorious 4th of July weekend.