Monday, October 31, 2011


For 35 years in our antique travels, we have been looking for an early 1900s ballot box. The rare times we have spotted one, it was way out of our price range. In a recent discussion with a class mate that worked at our hometown court house, we found out that she had acquired several ballot boxes years ago when they became obsolete. At our recent class reunion, she brought one to give us. We were thrilled beyond belief. It was in "stored in a barn for years" condition and needed three pieces of glass replaced. Bob, of course, loves a challenge like that. This is what it looks like now.
He took it all apart, restored the original finish, and replaced the glass. It was like a giant puzzle putting it back together. It took our four hands and arms, two bungee cords, a belt, and a few well-chosen words to get the eight pieces of glass to fit back in their slots and grooves.
The top locks with three separate keys -- we assume for three different people to prevent tampering with the election process. If only our current election process was still this simple. The original printing is on the top door indicating that it came from a ballot box company in Denver.
All of the time we were working on it, I kept thinking this could be one GIANT cloche. It stands 25" high and is 17" square. The eight pieces of glass form an octogon within the square framework.
I'm sure I'll have fun thinking of things to put into my new "cloche" for the various seasons.

I always love when a decorative item also has meaning to our family. My grandfather was a popular elected official for years in the early 1900s. I like to imagine that many votes in his favor were cast in this very ballot box.
I'll be joining the following parties this week. Check these blogs out for a plethora of inspiration.
A Stroll Thru Life for the Fall Cloche Party on Tuesday
Savvy Southern Style for Wow Us Wednesday
Restore Interiors for Restored It Wednesday
The Shabby Creek Cottage for Transformation Thursday
No Minimalist Here for Open House Party on Thursday
Common Ground for Vintage Inspiration Friday
French Country Cottage for Feathered Nest Friday
Funky Junk Interiors for Saturday Nite Special

Thursday, October 27, 2011


We had a nice, wet snow yesterday!
So, consequently there was frost on the pumpkins this morning.
As you can see, our small garden produced a bumper crop of gourds and pumpkins this year.
Just in time for a Happy Halloween weekend!
Enjoy all those little ghosts and goblins!

Sunday, October 23, 2011


We went to the new IKEA store in Denver this weekend ------ didn't buy a thing ------ don't need to go back. You have to be a better, more dedicated shopper than I am to enjoy THAT experience.

No need to tour a corn maize this Halloween season - I've been to IKEA.
Doesn't that just look like the floor map of IKEA?

If you are a REAL corn maize fanatic, I hear this is a great one. Check out Pope Farms, Wiggins, Colorado just up Hwy. 76 from Denver.

Thursday, October 20, 2011


My husband, Bob, loves to find old, neglected furniture to restore. This is his latest metamorphosis -- a chair that had lost its rockers, then left outside to deteriorate. It was in his price range of $5.00.
He took it all apart to re glue everything, then made new rockers; and finally gave it a new finish similar to its Arts & Crafts roots.
Then, it was my job to make a new upholstered seat. Since our son is taking the chair for his study as a reading chair, I also made a pad for the back for additional comfort.

Check out the following blogs for super inspiration; and be sure to thank these ladies for hosting these fun parties:
Restore Interiors for Restored It Wednesday
The Shabby Chic Cottage for Transformation Thursday
Miss Mustard Seed for Furniture Feature Friday

Friday, October 14, 2011


From the Austin, Texas area, we headed north on our 10-day, 3000 mile road trip. Trust me - it is a long way across eastern Texas, eastern Oklahoma, then eastern Kansas through small towns on 2-lane roads. Have you ever heard of Greasy, Oklahoma or Arma, Kansas? Plus, I had no idea that Eastern Oklahoma had mountains. They call them mountains; but I'm from Colorado, we call them foothills. Nevertheless, they were very pretty! We finally arrived in Kansas City to visit friends.

While there, we went to Blackwell's Thrift Store, 1316 E. 63rd St., Kansas City, Mo. This was the cleanest, best organized thrift store I've ever seen.
This is the place to go if you are into vintage Pyrex, enamelware, or any type of kitchen stuff.
See that carpet - I actually had that in our family room back in the 1970s.
We then headed north to Nell Hill's Briarcliff store. I've always enjoyed visiting the Nell Hill's stores in north-eastern Kansas. They contain inspirational vignettes, lots of decorating ideas, nice furniture and accessories - all at fairly reasonable prices. My favorite part are all of the details on the fabric items that they fabricate.
It looks like lanterns will be big this Christmas season.
And, one of my favorite things -- plaid!
Square wreaths and plaid book covers.
The only thing I bought at Nell Hill's was a roll of wide red, plaid ribbon that is acrylic, but looks like wool - my Christmas inspiration!!

From there, we headed back south to one of our favorite antique malls, The Mission Road Antique Mall, 4101 W. 83rd St., Prairie Village, Ks.
There, I found another piece of brown transferware. I've been trying to accumulate enough large soup bowls in brown transferware to mix & match. I now have 7 - almost there.
We had wonderful food, and enjoyed the hospitality of our friends. But, it was time to head for home - a long ride across Kansas.

Next week, I'm joining in the following parties. Please check them out; and thank all of these ladies for hosting such fun, inspirational parties.
A Stroll Thru Life for Table Top Tuesday
Savvy Southern Style for Wow Us Wednesday
Very Merry Vintage Style for Share the Love Wednesday
Common Ground for Vintage Inspiration Friday
2805 for Potpourri Friday

Saturday, October 8, 2011


Continuing on our 3000-mile, 10-day road trip, we headed to our main destination of the semi-annual Antique Week in Round Top, Texas. We arrived on Monday afternoon and started to scout out our plans for Tuesday. We discovered several tents along the highway that were set up and ready with great merchandise for customers.
Our plans for Tuesday were to spend the whole day at Marburger Farm, which has 9 tents, 12 buildings with 350+ antique dealers on 43 acres.
Unfortunately, this is the only picture I have of Marburger and I took it on Wednesday. Let's just say: one car locked-box malfunction PLUS big bucks to retrieve camera from said malfunction EQUALS one unhappy shopper/blogger/Honda owner!! All that didn't dampen our resolve to see as much as we could in the 104 degree heat. We had been to Marburger in 2006, but it has really grown into everything imaginable that could be considered vintage/antique. Thank goodness they had golf-cart shuttles, friendly people, lots of fans blowing, and huge glasses of ice available. We are at the point in our lives after collecting antiques for over 50 years that we don't need a thing, so we didn't intend to purchase much - just enjoy looking and checking out trends. But, what did we buy at Marburger? You know I can't resist brown transferware, so my treat from Marburger was this terrine. I bought it from some friendly gals from Pennsylvania who were suffering from the heat and willing to bargain.
Bob is a sucker for hand-made tool boxes with interesting details and purchased this one.
It has lots of fun cubby-holes and original paint.
On Wednesday, we were meeting an old antiquing/quilting friend (Hi Tam!) from Beaumont, Texas at the Big Red Barn venue. It covers 30,000 sq. ft. in the barn, plus 2 tents and an off-site venue at the Carmine Dance Hall.
I loved this place, not only because it was air-conditioned, but it is loaded with Americana/primitive/really nice stuff.
I was happy to see that natural, wood patina is alive and well. Not everything is being painted.
We were in Texas, after all, so there were great western things.

My purchase on Wednesday was at the Carmine Dance Hall - a brown transferware chamber pot. I know it is A CHAMBER POT, but just look at all of that transferware lusciousness!

We finished the afternoon checking out other venues along the highway.
There are thousands and thousands (I'm sure?) of vendors.
Everything you could ever want, plus inspiration and bargains galore!!
On my next post, we'll leave Texas and head to Kansas City and a visit to the famous Nell Hill's store.
This week I'm joining the following parties. Please check them out - you won't be disappointed.
Coastal Charm for Nifty Thrifty Tuesday
Very Merry Vintage Style for Share the Love Wednesday
A Southern Daydreamer for Outdoor Wednesday
Savvy Southern Style for Wow Us Wednesday
Common Ground for Vintage Inspiration Friday

Wednesday, October 5, 2011


We are back from our 3000-mile, 10-day road trip just in time to celebrate our granddaughter's 15th birthday. She was so excited when she was 4 (picture on the left) as I made her a Dorothy dress, that she sat on my lap practically the whole time that I was sewing it. The picture on the left was taken this Fall as she started high school. She still loves to dress up, and will be going to her first homecoming dance this next weekend. She has a new dress, but this time with HIGH-heeled sparkly shoes.
Happy Birthday, sweet Caitlin!

We had a great trip heading south out of Colorado into New Mexico, then east into Texas. Our first stop was a visit with Bob's cousin and wife in Bandera, Texas. Now, I know what they mean when they say west Texas is dry this year. The cotton plants are struggling, and everything is brown. My heart goes out to all of those farmers and ranchers.
We made a quick stop in Fredericksburg at the German bakery for a sweet German pretzel. Yum - it was every bit as good as the ones I had in Germany this summer.
The next destination was Bastrop, Texas, the home of the horrible wild fires this summer. It is so sad to see homes with just the rock fireplaces left standing. I believe 1700 homes were burned. I talked with one mother whose family of five had been displaced and was living at the same motel we were in. She was upbeat, thankful they had jobs, and excited about the new home they are designing.
Bastrop would be our home for three nights, as we traveled back and forth each day to Round Top and Warrenton for the huge antique extravaganza.
Five years ago, we had been to the antique week, but it has grown even more. Next post will be about what we saw and the things we bought. Stay tuned!