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...



  1. Not a thing boring about your family memories.
    I enjoyed reading about them. I always enjoy looking at the pictures. I didn't get a three kings cake but I believe it's a happy meaningful tradition to start in my household to share with my grandchildren. My grandfather was born in Louisiana many many moons ago and I wished I had paid more attention to what he had to say when I was around him, he love to chat.
    Happy Monday

  2. The below comment was sent to my email but did not appear on my blog, so here it is. From Anyes at The Dusty Victorian.

    Hello Gina,
    You should be a Victorian museum curator. You do it so well. Your passion for the style runs deep and it show exquisitely. Lovely!

  3. Gina,
    What a wonderful post!!
    I always envy those who grew up with grand parents. I did not and always feel as though I missed something very special.
    My Dad passed away in Feb. It will be 25 years thsi year and my sons missed out on learning so much from him. Jim was 3 and has no memories of him but joey was 5 and does remember him playing on the floor with him so i am thankful for at least that.

    Thanks so much for always stopping by...

    Have a great day!!


  4. Another comment that did not appear on my blog, from gardenofdaisies.

    Your rose chintz china is really pretty. So perfect for Valentines day teas.

  5. What a treasure to have these old photos of your husband's family, Gina, yours too! I love your creations to celebrate February's special occasions....Christine

  6. Gina, wow! You certainly did do a lot of celebrating this month. What luck to locate a postcard featuring your grandmother's name. I have such fond memories of the special relationship with my grandparents. Love the photo of your Dad sharpening the saw blade -- it looks so professional with the sparks flying as he works.


  7. Beautiful photos Gina. How special to have them and share with everyone.


  8. I love old family photos and stories, loved your husbands great grandfather's story, It wonderful he has those two pictures
    Look how cute your were, back in the day

  9. I love family history and the sharing of it was beautifully told.
    I loved the way you shared the month with us.

  10. Hi Gina,
    I'm so glad you dropped by. Yes, I love vintage graphics and postcards are so fun to collect. Such nice memories and photos you have of your family. Thanks for stopping by and I am also your newest follower.

  11. Hello Gina,
    Very sweet and touching post. Those photographs of your husband's grandfather and his children are priceless. One can really see the Cherokee heritage in the features. Being of mixed heritage myself, I find these particularly interesting, I'm sure an anthropologist would too.

  12. What a great post to celebrate February with a wealth of good information. Your family momentos are precious!

  13. What treasures, the photos and history about family from days gone by.
    Thanks so much for sharing at AMAZE ME MONDAY!

  14. You have a wonderful nostalgic heart and a great eye for displays! (And vintage, too!)
    Loved the photos of your husband's family and of course, of your Dad. :)

  15. Gina you really do have a lot to celebrate in February. Perfect for a wonderful decorator like you! I love the tribute to these two fabulous presidents! Mardi Gras, and your wonderful family heritage. Thanks for sharing with SYC.