Saturday, November 27, 2010

Eat your heart out Kate.................. may have snared your dishy Prince William
but I've already got King Robert, who made me his Queen many, many years ago!

At long last I've found the perfect crown for Bob, the great guy who not only drove me south to spend hours at two favorite antiques malls (more coming up on this trip), but also had fun, and displayed the patience of Job, while waiting as I filled my cart with treasures! Of course I'll be using this gorgeous blue-grey metal crown to decorate in the Nordic/French style I'm choosing for our Christmas here at Buckingham Palace, I mean 'the cottage'.

Forget grocery shopping..............filling a cart with antiques and vintage treasure is much more fun!

More later dear blog friends.......hope your holiday weekend was fun too.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Thanksgiving's simple pleasures...........

 Thanksgiving wish....may your day be beautiful.

Taking a break from blog land and hitting the road.....treasure hunting, enjoying the countryside during Autumn's waning days, sharing time with dear friends.  

Have a wonderful holiday. 
See you later.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Bright and white changes...

While checking on the booth recently............deciding what to add for the holiday shoppers, I also found a little something to bring home.

Looking around at all the white and bright items both in our booth (above), and other dealers' spaces at SuzAnna's Antiques, I discovered this perfect table for the end of my couch!  Well known top brand, solid mahogany, now painted and distressed creamy white, I fell for the reeded sides with a door (nice storage space inside) and the unusual shaped top........a $45 bargain!

As always, a few changes going on around the cottage.  They involve many, many yards of creamy white fabric, and some great pillows made by Vanessa, my dear friend and business partner at the booth, and the talented Joy at Savvy City Farmer ~ do visit her, congratulate her on five years of blogging, and check out the great things she has for sale in her Etsy shop.

More coming up on the living room.............sometimes just a fresh coat of paint means, let's change this, get rid of that old thing, and why not put that over there while we're thinking about it................ 

.........DH just arrived home after a week working in northern England.....his eyes are still blurry from the long flight across the pond, but you'll most likely hear sighing in the background soon when he ventures into the living room.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Pink Saturday

Told you so.................there's a fabulous array of really vintage Christmas ornaments, including fabulous PINK Shiny Brite balls from the 50's and 60's, awaiting you at SuzAnna's Antiques and the prices are the best around - will not break your budget at all!

All these are in our friend Jeannie's great booth, and I just know she probably has a lot more in her own adorable cottage shop in downtown Hillsborough, North Carolina. So, if you're close to that location be sure to look her up at Uniquitiques ~ Antiques & Interior Design.  Don't you just love the dusty pink mixed with aqua?

Even the vintage boxes are adorable.  Most of these are real blown glass ornaments, remember how your kitty, pup, or toddler, would knock one off and it would shatter into a hundred pieces........but you didn't get mad because it was just another of those wonderful Christmas traditions!  I forgot to check, but I have a strong feeling these were actually made in the USA by hard working Americans and, unlike Martha's plastic ones, didn't float thousands of miles across oceans after being made by people, including children, working for meagre, way below poverty level, wages!  Oops, started to climb up on the soap box there..............getting down right now!  I just know you have better things in mind for your weekend than listening to me spout off about America's loss of jobs, and poor quality wares from distant shores being foisted upon us!!

So dear friends, Happy Pink Saturday.........hope you've started any shopping you need to do for the holidays.  Meanwhile take a coffee break and stop by Beverly's How Sweet the Sound blog to enjoy many great pink posts.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Lights, camera.......action!

Lots of excitement at Suzanna's and the Vintage Village this morning.  A TV crew filmed the shop for a local cable access company documentary..........perhaps some of our pretties will be on the silver screen on a future Sunday morning!   Above, you see the mom and daughter angel owners, Susie and Jenny, flitting about in their holiday finery, ready for their screen debut!

These may not be champagne bottles - altho' we probably should take one over to the shop to celebrate, after hours of course.  Gail, who works at SuzAnna's, crafts pretty things and these are currently displayed in our booth and would make a great gift......numbers are definitely popular now.

I just know this gal was never on television before.......

................and Joy Phil must have been surprised when the camera caught him stuffed in a Ball jar, meanwhile he hopes he gets to hang on someone's tree soon!

Debra, who has two fabulous booths (I always want her pretties!), managed to display her amazing French wooden grotto, just a glimpse here, in time for the camera............................

...............and although the warm temperatures and sunshine mean our hats are still waiting at home with the mufflers and gloves, these beautiful hand-knitted ones from a local lady's dexterous fingers will soon be snapped up when the weather changes.

Sweet sisters Debbie and Susan have a second shop in the Vintage Village for the season....and as Susan is a florist you know the wreaths, table displays, and Christmas trees are truly fabulous.

If you're in Raleigh, NC this weekend, the weather will be glorious, the trees are showing peak color and are brilliant this year, do stop by the Vintage Village on Durant Road.......all shops will be open and crammed with beautiful, affordable merchandise for holiday shopping.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

A burning question......

Help!  Anyone out there know where you can buy these wonderful French tapers here in the USA?  My box of 20 bougies is almost empty.  I love these non-drip, slow burning candles for the dinner table - they have holes allowing the melted wax to drip down inside the candle, a brilliant idea.  I found this box several years ago but don't recall where.  The places I've unearthed online are out of stock.  Does this mean I need to plan another visit to France?  Or perhaps my brother and his wife will read this and tell me they can grab me a box right there in their little French village!  I'll be waiting. 

Do you burn candles in your home?  What's your favorite perfume?  I love the lighter scents of linen, cotton, sea salt.......but I must say the tomato and blackcurrant one I was given in England on my last visit is the most fabulous and unusual fragrance of all.

Edited 7:30 AM:
Should have known my wonderful Francophile friend Penny at Comforts of Home (where she's having a great 'French giveaway') would know where to find bougies!!  Thanks for the info Penny.  Looking for a great gift for friends whose table settings include candlelight?  They would definitely be delighted to receive a box of Bougies la Francaise.........until you get a trip to France looks like you can buy them here!

Monday, November 15, 2010

It's beginning to look...........

Surrounded by colors of Christmas as I style the booth at Suzanna's Antiques, I'm also thinking of decorating my home.  Weeks are flying by and we'll soon be in that annual whirl with much to accomplish.  I'm definitely simplifying when it comes to holiday decor.  While looking through those ubiquitous green plastic storage boxes, you know the ones, we all have them, I decided my lovely Santo should start wearing her wings in holiday anticipation.

This year, I'll be decorating in a simple Nordic/French style.  I feel it blends nicely with my year round decor........subtle shades of blue grey, cream and silver.  Tucked between will be natural greenery, with a pop of red holly berries, added closer to Christmas so that they are fresh and bright.

At the shop, I was offered a fabulous way to hang the many ornaments I have for sale......a small vintage bedspring already distressed and warmly rusted! it will also be useful for displaying things such as the great pillows Vanessa is sewing.

In all honesty, my Christmas decorating is now simple compared to how I used to go over the top with every new fad Martha S. and others could dream up to hang, rope, wind, and dangle throughout the house!
They are beautiful decorations, and were enjoyed for a while, now my look will be more in keeping with my daily life.  Perhaps it's an aging thing, the wish to not have as much around.  Or could it be the annual clamber through the attic to reach all those boxes way in the back has just become a horrendous chore and tough on the lower back!

Our prices are fabulous compared to what I'm seeing in other resale places and shops selling brand new!  So if you're in our area of North Carolina we hope you can stop by to shop at Vintage Village.  Every booth at SuzAnna's Antiques is crammed with beautiful Christmas items, antique, vintage, and gently-used almost new.  The other shops there also have amazing things for your home.

Chenille ornaments - SOLD!
Happy shopping!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

.....more cat tales

This has been my week for cats and kittens visiting the porch.  Even though we no longer have pets of our own we seem to be a resting stop along the way for passing felines. 

Perhaps it's the mirror where they seem to enjoy stopping and primping.....

.............or could it be my French toile covered cushions and pillows, warm and inviting in the Autumn sunshine.

This is Bella peering in at me through the dining room window.  A pretty kitty who needs to be renamed as 'she' has now been re-classified as 'he'.  Living down the street, he belongs to three little girls and is being allowed to run wild without a collar, or being neutered......a big no-no as we all know!

While Bella was sleeping, perfectly color co-ordinated alongside my gourds, I called the owners who came and took him home.  I sure hope they take better care of this very friendly, handsome young cat, and soon!

Meanwhile an update on the feral cats we've been catching (dislike the word trapping but in all honesty that's what it was).  We managed to get the last little all black kitten on Thursday and was he ever ferocious!  The animal control officer had a very hard time getting him out of the cage and resorted to the burlap bag which she used to get the mom.  This means all four kittens and the mom have gone from the garden...........we are so glad.  Of course there are still several more feral cats around so we won't be surprised if we go through this yet again some day! 

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Pink Saturday

This funky little bungalow was my favorite beach house with touches of pink. 
As we drove through Carolina and Kure beaches recently I noticed lot of different pink painted houses.

This one was perfect rose pink..................

.............the one on the pond more a shabby chic dusty pink.........

.............this one in a row of expensive properties on the beachfront, reminded me of a tropical island resort, with beautifully manicured landscaping leading to gorgeous views of the dunes and ocean right outside the back door!

I'd take up the offer of the 'Winter Long Term' stay here though, even wrapping up in blankets to sit out on the porch on those Adirondack chairs with a hot toddy!  Wonder if it's adorable inside too!

Welcome to Pink Saturday - stop over to visit our hostess Beverly at How Sweet The Sound for tons of pink posts.  You'll love her new banner too!

Friday, November 12, 2010

The magic of music....

I'm in a musical mood................

Each evening, for many, many years, I've watched this special lady deliver the daily news on my television screen.  Pam has been with the local CBS broadcast affiliate for a long time, speaking to us in her charming voice.

Four years ago, Pam found her other voice.  A late bloomer to the world of music, she was encouraged to sing.  Last weekend I was invited to an area restaurant for a delightful live cabaret performance as Pam celebrated the release of her first CD, The Full Measure of a Woman.

Wow, Pam sings, and does it beautifully!  Remember all those really great songs from years gone by?  Pam puts heart and soul into them.............I even found myself with my arm around my dearest as we relived memories brought back by these wonderful songs.

What's your favorite oldie?  Do you have a song that brings back fond memories?
More on Pam's story and her music here .  You can purchase her CD online too.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

"three little kittens.......

..............who lost their mittens"

Remember them?  Well they were sitting on my front porch looking up at me when I raised the blinds a couple of mornings ago!  Initially a delight, I do love cats but no longer own one, but when reality hit I recalled what we've been faced with twice before when the same feral mom cat gave birth.  This time there appear to be four, possibly five, kittens who are living under my neighbor's garden shed!  As they are about 5 weeks old, mom must have left some to play on my porch in the early morning sunshine while she went in search of breakfast.

After talking with my neighbor we decided once again to call animal control and have them come with a gentle Havaheart trap which was set Tuesday afternoon.  Yesterday morning we found these three cuties, feisty and hissing when we approached.  Mom was playing around with another black kitten, apparently not too concerned for her now caged offspring.

Yes they are adorable, but no they can't be left here to join several others already roaming our neighborhood.  The officer came and, while trying to get them transferred to another cage, the sweet little grey one escaped! 

We managed to corner him/her in a bush but boy was he mad - never heard a kitten with such a loud voice.  She eventually picked him up and as you can see he wasn't worried about his mittens, just her gloves!

The trap is reset, another little can of food awaits..............and of course I'm out there in the warm and sunshiny garden every five minutes to see what's happening. 
Yes, it's sad to take them away, but the alternative is worse as we have several foxes wandering through the neighborhood and a permanent hawk perched on a telephone pole awaiting its next meal.

I could easily fall for this already independent grey, blue-eyed kitty but, and there are so many buts, off he went with the siblings as I dried a tear and wished him well. 
All this starts with pet owners not being responsible.  By allowing their cats to run wild without spaying or neutering, the feral cat population can explode within a couple of years.  If you decide to offer a home to a cat, please make sure it is fixed before being allowed outside.

Later:  Surprisingly, after a couple of years of trying, the mom was caught in the trap yesterday afternoon and removed by the officer in a stylish burlap bag!  Sadly there is at least one more kitten left however another trap has been left, with plenty of food, hopefully this morning we will have that one too.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Just a day at the beach

Even when Summer's a memory....... 
............the beach is beautiful.

Lines of brown pelicans fly just above the surf.

 Young girls paddle while listening to music....................sigh!!!!

Dancing in the shallows while we wait and enjoy the late breezy Autumn afternoon.

Shells are scarce as storms have stayed away, thank goodness!

Granddaughter who has shared a beach weekend each year, leaves a message in the sand........see the heart at the end.....

.............and we hope she will always remember the fun times we've had.

Carolina Beach, October 2010

Looking homeward across the pond.