Friday, February 22, 2013

Chocolate Pots and Snowflakes

(Post from 2013)

Chocolate Pots...

and Snowflakes. 
How wonderful!

The week started off with warmer weather
 and a sweet little bloom in my garden.
 The first bloom of the season,
tucked between the garden hose
and hidden from the rabbits!

But the week would end with a beautiful blanket of snow,
a BIG blanket of snow, like 11" or so! 
Here in mid Missouri it was called a "thunder" snow storm. 
It was the strangest thing to hear thunder booming 
as the snow fell silently to the ground.

By late afternoon the snow had stopped falling
and this is what it looked like out there.
The concrete planter would almost be covered
and the cherub would disappear in the snow.

I no longer needed to dream of a white winter,
as pictured in these trade cards...

because I now had one.
So with all that snow outside my window

I knew I did not want to get all bundled up
 in my white winter fur 

and go anywhere

so I decided to stay inside today
 and bring out the silver tray

the hand cut and glittered snowflakes

and the antique chocolate pots

and enjoy a nice cup of hot chocolate.

If you would like to join me 
I would be glad to pour another cup.
Thankyou for your visit
and stay warm.

I am joining these wonderful parties this week...

Saturday, February 16, 2013

February...So many reasons to Celebrate!

For February being the shortest month of the year it sure has a lot of reasons to celebrate, or should I say "decorate" for (and you know how I love to decorate and create vignettes).  It is a month to celebrate love, a month of remembrances and a month to be thankful for others and who they are and what they stand for.

Let's start with President's Day, which is Monday. I know I have cheated a LOT of important people out of this vignette but I just chose to use these two presidents since their birthday's are in this month. Oh, how these two wonderful men loved their/our country. Thankyou President Washington and President Lincoln.

Now to recognize each one's birthday individually. Abraham Lincoln was born February 12, 1809.
He was our 16th president and served from 1861-1865. He died in 1865 at the age of 56. His nickname was "Honest Abe" and he was the first president to wear a beard while in office.

I didn't really have anything exciting and old to use for this vignette so I just used one of my old trade cards of a top hat since President Lincoln is well known for his "stovepipe" hats.

I do have this early 1900's postcard...

And then there was George Washington, he was born February 22, 1732. He was, as we all know, our 1st President and served from 1789-1797.  He died in 1799 at the age of 67. His nickname was "Father of his Country", and was the first president to appear on a postage stamp.
For this vignette I used an antique postcard and then for his association with the cherry tree I baked a cherry pie to use in the photo. I really made it upon the request of my son for his Valentine dessert. So I put it to good use and used it in this vignette.

Oh I forgot, I do have this antique Victorian calling card with President Cleveland on it. His full name was Stephen Grover Cleveland, he was born March 18, 1837, he was both the 22nd and the 24th President of the United States. He died in 1908 at the age of 71.

Alright, back to the beginning of the month where we start the month off with Groundhog's Day, he's a cute little guy but I did not have a single thing for a vignette.

Since I did not know much about Mardi Gras I did a little research and found out that it has a Jesus connection and any time that I can celebrate Jesus is a good time. I bought a King cake which contains a small baby doll that symbolizes the finding of baby Jesus by the Magi.

I found out that purple, green and gold are the "Carnival" colors. Purple stands for Justice, green stands for Faith and gold stands for Power. So after the King cake was consumed I put a crown on the cake stand and more beads (pictured below)! The throwing of trinkets and beads, during the parade, reminds us that we all have gifts for one another.

The spirit of Mardi Gras shows how people of different races, religions and backgrounds can get along together. And that leads me into the next celebration. The celebration of February being black history month.
My husband is African American and I have researched his family back to the days of slavery. These ancestors of his were survivors and I am so proud of how they went on with their lives after The Emancipation (thank you Abraham Lincoln) and how they made something of themselves and paved the way for future generations. Thank you also to Martin Luther King, Jr. for his fight for equality for all men.

Below is a photo of my husband's great grandfather, born around 1830 and a survivor of slavery. (Word has it that he was part African American and Cherokee Indian.) Pictured in the other photo are 4 of his 13 children, born 1870-1884. These two photos are very precious to me because they are the only photos we have of this older generation.

The above photo is a copy of the below original early 1900's postcard that I keep in this antique beaded frame hanging in the foyer.

I didn't really have anything for a vignette but I do have these two postcards I wanted to share. Most "Black Americana" postcards depict African Americans in a crude manner so I thought these were so sweet and pretty.

And of course with February comes Valentine's Day and that special dinner. Below is my dinner table set with my Johnson Bros. Rose Chintz china. 

Here is a close up of the knife rest, salt cellar with spoon and butter pat. The salt cellar was just for looks but as you can see I did use the butter pat and later the knife rest.

February is also the month we celebrated my grandma and dad's birthdays. Neither are living anymore but I still always remember their special day. My grandma's birthday is the 19th.
I was 16 when she passed away, back in 1986. She was only 65. It wasn't until the last two years of her life that we grew very close and I thank God for that time we had together. 
In the below vignette I used an antique postcard  (her name was Kathryn Bernice) and some photos. The top photo was our last photo taken together. The photos are a little dark but in the middle one she has one of our baby squirrels that we were raising at the time and the bottom photo is her on her front porch decorated for Fall/Halloween. Now you know where I get my fascination for my front porch from. 
The backdrop for the vignette is a days of the week tea towel that she embroidered for me (I have the set) and the opal ring is a ring she received from grandpa for their anniversary. She wore it all the time so I felt very special to have received it after her death.

My Dad's birthday is the 28th and he passed away back in 1997. He was only 56. My dad did not like to have his picture taken, but luckily I do have several of him. The top right photo is the only family photo that was ever taken of us (I am the baby) so it is very special to me. The bottom left side photo is of him sharpening his saw blade (he owned a sawmill/lumber company) and the photo on the right is the two of us and the log cake I made him for his birthday. Also I have pictured an antique postcard.
I miss my dad very much and wish my children would have gotten the chance to know their grandpa. My oldest son was only 6 months old when my dad died. Again, I thank God for that time I had with him.
Life is so short, shorter for some then for others, but we must always remember to treasure those in our midst.

Well, that is it for this post, I do hope I did not bore you too much with all the family stuff. Thank you so much for celebrating the month of February with me. 

I am sharing this post with these wonderful parties...


Saturday, February 2, 2013

A little Victorian Romance

February is here already and we all know what that means, time to get ready for Valentine's Day!
So for this post I decided to put together some Victorian vignettes. I went about the house trying to find little romantic treasures to place together to make several different themed vignettes. I hope you enjoy them.

(items in this photo include a Moser cranberry glass perfume bottle, a toothbrush holder with a bouquet of roses, a sachet my mom gave me when I was a child, soap in a cherub soap dish, my kids in the cherub frame-they are 13 and 16 now, and last an antique postcard on an easel)

(a metal cherub/fairy figure with an added cranberry glass dish on top, Rose Chintz teacups/saucers, cranberry enameled glass tumblers and a little Rose Chintz plate with little petit fours that I made, a pink flower doily that my grandma crocheted and two petit point little hand towels)

A closer look...

(antique postcard on easel and faux bird in antique cage)

(daquerreotype, valentine, ruby flash "Marion" cup, human hair watch fob and little heart locket)
The lady in the photo is my 3rd great grandmother (Ellen), taken during the Civil War era, I bought the cup at an antique mall because of the name on it. Ellen married a man named Daniel Marion Davis, who went by Marion. He was a Sergeant for the Co. K 77th Illinois US Infantry, he served for 3 years and 1 month, was mustered out on Oct 11, 1864 and married Ellen almost one month later, on Nov. 3, 1864. I tell you that little bit of information just to add to the romance of it all. I believe this daquerreotype of Ellen went right along with Marion on that battlefield. And I think this is so because of its condition. It no longer has the case (the one shown does not go with it) and it has lots of scratches and wear to it. And the fact that it was passed down from generation to generation speaks volumes, but sadly somewhere along the line the story stopped being told and the photo was thrown in a box and stored in an attic until I came to own it. Oh, if only this daquerreotype could talk, what a love story we would hear. The fob and locket did not belong to them.

(antique shell art box-notice the heart pincushion, antique fan, red velvet frame and carousel brooch)
The young lady in the photo is Viola, daughter of the above Ellen and Marion, and my 2nd great grandmother.
A closer look at the carousel brooch, can you see the little cupid riding the bicycle? There's also a cowboy riding a pig and a dolphin riding a fish. Not antique though but I like it anyway.

The below photo is not a vignette by any means but I wanted to show the heart up close. This is one of my antique velvet photo albums. Isn't it sweet?

Okay, now that it is February it is time to put the Pfaltzgraff Winterberry dishes back into the cupboard...

And time to bring out the Johnson Bros. Rose Chintz China!

I'll make some Valentines...
(I actually made these last year to hang on my tree but no longer have the tree.)

These are my favorites that I made. I made the large Valentine for hubby a couple of years ago. It has a mirror in the center and says "Look into this mirror clear And my true love will appear." I copied that idea out of a Victorian book. I added little die cut pieces, lace trim and misc. to the glitter hearts to fancy them up a bit.

Since pink is a Valentine color I thought I would show you my latest auction purchase. I bought a pair of pink Bristol vases for $40, pictured is just one of them. I liked the daisies on them, they make me think of this...He loves me, he loves me not, he loves me...

Well that is it for this post but I want to send a Valentine greeting your way, take your pick and I do hope your Valentine's Day will be filled with love.

And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. 
But the greatest of these is LOVE.
1 Corinthians 13:13

I am sharing this post with the following parties:
1.  Patti at Ivy and Elephants
 2.  Sandi at Rose Chintz Cottage
4. TUESDAYS AT OUR HOME with Maria Elena