“In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about life: It Goes On.”
Robert Frost

Thursday, December 20, 2018

Christmas Wish


Odds are not good for a white Christmas this year. While we were off to a fast start for winter with cold temperatures and early snow, we have now stalled out and with a warm up, most of our snow is gone! It's much safer traveling for everyone but I still miss that pretty snow, it always seems to make everything a bit more festive.

We'll be spending Christmas here this year and getting together with friends and family to enjoy a low key celebration. I've been asked to make a holiday trifle for one get-together. My homemade fruit cake is made and I'll make a few of our favorite Christmas cookies too! My shop is closed until after Christmas so I can focus on the holiday. It's nice to have a little time away from it all!







These pretty vintage images of old Christmas cards were so pretty I just had to share them with you! I really love the pink Santa below!



The animals in the card below are so sweet. Such a beautiful and peaceful picture of innocence.

So here I am, still wishing for a white Christmas and wishing for all of you to have a lovely holiday with your friends and family.

Merry Christmas and I'll see you next year!
  Diane

Monday, December 3, 2018

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

 


Hi Friends! So winter's here! We've had a few inches of snow and our weather has been really cold! It's helped me get in the mood for Christmas! I've been adding some things to my shop and digging through bins of things I've had packed away. It almost feels like an early Christmas present when I find something I've stashed away and haven't seen in a few years!




When you have a house that has several storage areas and things are packed in, they tend to stay packed in! I found some cute vintage craft items that I've been wanting to use but never seem to have the time! At least I got to look at them and remind myself that I need to start working on these soon! Maybe by next year I'll have something to sell!


I'm in love with the tiny reindeer and Santa in his sleigh. I'm thinking of a diorama under a cloche glass dome... my crafting imagination is brimming over but the actual crafting has not happened for awhile. That's going to be one of my New Year's Resolutions! Get crafting!




Chip and Dale dancing for Joy!



Meanwhile in my shop I've added some fun Christmas stuff.  Click on the link if you'd like to take a look! Unfortunately I'm no longer shipping international as the costs have gone up so high.


 


 



 


Crafters collect these vintage ornament holder boxes, especially if they have cute graphics. Some folks decorate them and use them as ornaments! I noticed that the metal hooks are much sturdier than the flimsy ones you get today.





 



 


Here's the cover and inside page of this very old song book. It has sweet illustrations on every page!





Dennison Christmas Seals, Pink Christmas 

Dennison labels are also collectible and loved by crafters too.


Elf Pixie on Leaf Dish 

Lately I've become fascinated with the vintage Elves, they are getting really hard to find these days at the flea markets and estate sales!




These ornaments above are made of a tightly woven straw and are from Sweden. They are from the 1950's.  I'll have more in my shop soon!





Hope you enjoyed looking at my vintage finds! I'll be here again soon, 
because it is the most wonderful time of the year!

~Merry Merry Christmas~
Diane





Friday, November 16, 2018

Thanksgiving AKA Turkey Day



Thanks a bunch my blogging friends! Nice to see you here! Here in the states we love our Thanksgiving also known as Turkey Day!


Bay and Lemon Turkey


It used to be that Turkey was served only on Thanksgiving and maybe Christmas and it was a very special occasion while growing up in the 1960's and 1970's.  As a kid seeing that huge bird was awe inspiring and drool worthy!



When I was really young we celebrated at my Grandparents and we alternated years as to which side of the family we would visit.  I do remember it was a spectacular feast. The special side dishes that went along with the turkey were also phenomenal!


The Feast

Our menu consisted of....
Roast Turkey
Stuffing or Dressing
Mashed potatoes and gravy
Sweet Potatoes with the Marshmallows on top
Green Bean casserole
Cranberry Apple Jello Salad or Cranberry Fluff or Cranberry Apple Relish Salad (below)

 

Cranberry Sauce
Dinner Rolls
Relish Plate with olives, baby pickles and carrot and celery sticks; and pickled beets if we were visiting my Dad's parents.
Pumpkin Pie with whipped cream

That was the basic menu, it was long before people started Deep Frying the turkey or brining them or doing whatever the new thing is now!

Now days though we can get turkey all year round and it has lost some of its allure.  But I still love a good roast turkey and the menu hasn't changed too much. The Green Bean casserole is now just steamed green beans (much healthier) but we've made up for that by adding a corn pudding and a scalloped oyster side dish (below) so there has been no reduction in calories!


 

I have fond memories of those olden days when all the families got together and I got to see my cousins and we ate and laughed and played! Now it's pretty much a get together for a bunch of us older folks to solve the worlds latest crisis and eat as much as we want!



How do you celebrate your Thanksgivings? What are your favorite foods? I know some of you are Canadians and have already celebrated, any juicy stories you'd like to share? Whatever you do or did I hope it was fun and that you enjoyed your time with friends or family!

Happy Thanksgiving!
See you in December!
Diane




P.S. some of these photos aren't mine. Click on the image and it should take you to the site.

Sunday, November 11, 2018

Veterans Day 2018



Solemn ceremonies took place around the world today to mark 100 years to the day since the Armistice that saw the end of World War I. Members of the public, military veterans, world leaders and royals took part in memorials around the globe to remember the 8.5 million people who gave their lives between 1914 and 1918.


My Grandfather served in WWI. My Father and several relatives have served over the years, and I'm very proud of all of them.  It's a day of remembrance but also a day of gratitude for all those who have served so honorably. 




The Story of the Red Poppy...
In the spring of 1915, shortly after losing a friend in Ypres, a Canadian doctor, Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae was inspired by the sight of poppies growing in battle-scarred fields to write a now famous poem called 'In Flanders Fields'. After the First World War, the poppy was adopted as a symbol of Remembrance.

Members of The American Legion Family distribute paper poppies with a request that the person receiving the flower make a donation to support the future of veterans, active-duty military personnel and their families with medical and financial needs.
 Thank you to all Veterans. 
~ Diane ~





Sunday, October 21, 2018

Hallow's Eve Is Almost Here πŸŽƒπŸ‘»

It's almost Halloween my friends! I've made my annual candy purchase at Costco and am ready for the little ghosts and goblins to appear at the door! Hopefully our weather will cooperate and we won't have snow! Since it occurs on a Wednesday night, I'm thinking we'll have a light turnout anyway.

We've actually already had snow here. If you look closely at Guy's coat in the picture below, you'll see tiny little snow flakes! It was a surprisingly cold day and you can tell by his expression he wasn't too pleased! Shortly after I took the photo he was at the door wanting in. Neither of us was ready for snow yet!








I found an autumnal poem about the moon and twinkling stars with witches having tea and current cakes. What else could you want of a friendly gathering!?




Dusk in Autumn
Sara Teasdale, 1884 - 1933
The moon is like a scimitar,
A little silver scimitar,
A-drifting down the sky.
And near beside it is a star,
A timid twinkling golden star,
That watches likes an eye.

And thro’ the nursery window-pane
The witches have a fire again,
Just like the ones we make,—
And now I know they’re having tea,
I wish they’d give a cup to me,
With witches’ currant cake.
 



My image below of Cranberry Scones is the best I could do to represent the witches' current cake from the poem. This photo took on a rather ghoulish look though, sometimes food photos don't turn out the way we want! I've posted the recipe before here's the link if you'd like it.
 Scone Recipe









Gotta fly folks! Hope your Halloween is fun!
πŸŽƒπŸŽƒ ~ Diane ~ πŸŽƒπŸŽƒ


Friday, October 5, 2018

Poetry and Pumpkins





The Pumpkin  
John Greenleaf Whittier, 1807 - 1892

"Then thanks for thy present! none sweeter or better E’er smoked from an oven or circled a platter! Fairer hands never wrought at a pastry more fine, Brighter eyes never watched o’er its baking, than thine! And the prayer, which my mouth is too full to express, Swells my heart that thy shadow may never be less, That the days of thy lot may be lengthened below, And the fame of thy worth like a pumpkin-vine grow, And thy life be as sweet, and its last sunset sky Golden-tinted and fair as thy own Pumpkin pie!"




Pumpkins, Pumpkins, Pumpkins!

October screams PUMPKINS! I love them! My baking takes on a very Pumpkin theme until after Thanksgiving and then I move on to Christmas with other ingredients. Check below for my Pumpkin recipe!







Pumpkin Gooey Butter Cake
                        Crust
  1              box  Spice cake mix
  1              stick  butter -- softened
  1              whole  egg
           
                        Filling
  8             ounces  cream cheese -- softened
  1             stick  butter -- softened
  2             cups  sugar
  2             whole  eggs
  1             teaspoon  vanilla
  1             can pumpkin puree (15 oz.)
  2             teaspoons ground cinnamon
  1             teaspoon ground nutmeg
  1/2          teaspoon ground ginger


For the Crust:  In large mixer bowl blend the cake mix and butter to combine.  Add the egg and mix until it forms a soft dough. Spray a 9 x 13 glass baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.  Press the dough evenly into the dish. Set aside and make the filling.

For the Filling: In large mixer bowl cream the butter and cream cheese until smooth.  Add the sugar, eggs and vanilla and mix until well combined. Add the pumpkin and spices, mix well. Pour over the crust.

Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 40-45 minutes.  Center of dessert will be gooey but not runny.

Cool at least 20 minutes, cut or spoon onto serving dish and top with whipped cream. Serves about 12.


The Harvest Moon
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, 1807 - 1882


It is the Harvest Moon! On gilded vanes
And roofs of villages, on woodland crests
And their aerial neighborhoods of nests
Deserted, on the curtained window-panes
Of rooms where children sleep, on country lanes
And harvest-fields, its mystic splendor rests!
Gone are the birds that were our summer guests,
With the last sheaves return the laboring wains!
All things are symbols: the external shows
Of Nature have their image in the mind,
As flowers and fruits and falling of the leaves;
The song-birds leave us at the summer’s close,
Only the empty nests are left behind,
And pipings of the quail among the sheaves.



Hope you enjoyed this bit of Pumpkin Palooza! 
Happy Fall to All!
Diane

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πŸƒπŸŽƒπŸŽƒπŸŽƒπŸŽƒπŸŽƒπŸŽƒπŸƒ




Wednesday, August 8, 2018

The Cat Days of August


This is me many years ago. One thing has been pretty consistent through my life though, cats. Love them, they've owned me for most of my life! This poor kitty let me squeeze on it until the photo was over. I really don't remember any cats scratching me when I was little, maybe that's just selective memory. I was about five years old in this photo, I still remember bits and pieces of that time in my life.
 My Great Aunt made this cute little card for me when I was little. She was the 
'Martha Stewart' in our family!

 Guy loves this little camp chair!

Dot is the great Lioness atop her mountain surveying her back yard!
Of course, she has to have a nice cushion to rest on!!

It's been hard to blog this summer, the world has gone mad and every day in our country brings some new terrible thing. Children taken from their parents, perhaps never to be returned. Russians are our new allies, and the UK and Canada are our adversaries?? Up is Down and Down is Up. The sky is not blue it's red. Which is true in California, the red sky of fires consuming everything in their paths. I see it on the news and from folks I follow on Instagram, photos of the hills flaming red into the sky, and sometimes the sky has turned black from smoke.

I tend to turn inwards at these times and have been working on my shop trying to list and sell as much as possible before everyone runs out of extra cash to spend on such frivolous things. The strange thing is, I seem to be selling more than ever. Maybe people are trying to sooth that inner longing for something nostalgic and safe perhaps?  Anyway here are a few photos of a few things I've picked up, some are in my shop already. Most of these are from an estate sale of a ladies home, I found out that she was a teacher and she saved just about everything. Her name was Vivian, and even though I've never met her, I feel a great fondness for her delightful spirit.


 In this cute old board game from the 1930's, I found a handmade paper doll set. I'm guessing the paper dolls were made by Vivian and tucked away in the box under some paper and then were forgotten. As you see, some were never cut out.


Here's a set of children's puzzles still in the wrapper, from the 1950's. 
Cute as can be and the colors and condition are wonderful!



 We had lots of rain this summer and our flowers and the butterflies are very happy. 



Our weather has been a roller-coaster this year, hot humid, then cold, then raining every day and now hot and dry. The perfect days here are getting few and far between, high temps over 90 degrees used to be rare and now we're up to about 3 weeks! Every year we seem to add a few more hot days to the record. So on those rare warm but dry summer days, when a cool breeze wafts through the air, I get outside to enjoy it. One of those perfect days was a couple of weeks ago and I headed to our Arboretum and here is what I saw....

 The flowers are always beautiful at the Arb and this year they have a 
new art exhibit featuring Origami animals made from metal. 
The cranes below where in several features and I really loved the horses!



 The lilies were dazzling!


 The Dahlia's were divine!

 Stacked crane tower!




 The wildflower praire garden is a newer feature.




I purchased several boxes of items at the estate sale, I hadn't been to one all year! It took me days to sort through all of it, and it will take me another year to get it all listed in my shop!
I have to say though, some things have already sold! The pink angel trays sold right away.



 I think I'm going to fill the old tin with Christmas cookie cutters
 and put it up for sale in my shop.


The Littlest Angel book is so cute, I found several other really old books there.   They even sold the letters she had written to her boyfriend, husband when he was away during World War II. I'm not sure how the story goes, I haven't had time to even look through them. I'll let you know if I find out anything really interesting.

Here are some Christmas items I've already staged and have in my shop, or will have ready soon. The Elves are ornaments to hang on the tree.  The train light set is listed and I was so surprised that the lights actually worked!




Finally I'm closing out with this cute book illustration. It's from the book entitled
 "Doings of Little Bear", written by Frances Margaret Fox and illustrated by Warner Carr, 
1915, from Rand McNally Publishing. 

I hope that you are all feeling well these days, I know that some of you have also taken the summer away from blogging. Maybe in the Autumn with cooler weather we'll all be refreshed and ready to go again.  I just have to say that I still adore my friends here in blogland! And all of you in Canada and the UK, you are still our friends and allies, please know that the majority of the people here in the states feel the same as I do. Please don't give up on us. We are going through a rough patch, but things will get better.

Now don't mind me, but I'm going to round up my cat companions and head out side to commune with nature. Watching the butterflies does my soul a world of good and after all it's the Cat Days of August....

πŸ˜ΈπŸƒπŸ¦‹~ Diane