I am just about to become 51, yikes, when did that happen??? I've been married for 31 years to a wonderful man, we have 2 children, the lights of my life. I homeschool my kids, funny because I got a degree in art education that I never used because I HATED teaching. It really is better when it's just my two, although there is not enough money in the world to pay teachers who have to teach reading--it is the bane of my existence. My husband and I both love scouring antique stores and travelling to comfortable places. I often say our idea of the great outdoors is a table at a sidewalk cafe. Nature is pretty, but must be kept in its place.
I'll be off to Clarinda in a couple days, where giant housekeeping tasks await. My sister and brother in law will be staying with us, as well as my cousin, then later her husband and children. Now, this in a house that has not been cleaned since December when I had my open house sale, all the Christmas stuff still out on display, boxes everywhere, and a huge antique park bench sitting in the dining room because, well, it was a bargain, and we bought it even though we have no place to put it. I will have to rush to wash the sheets and clean the bathrooms, don't even get me started on what needs to be done in the kitchen before food is allowed anywhere near it! I'm pretty much exhausted just thinking about it.
The next couple days will be a rush to fill up the ebay store with all the stuff I've just finished. Here is a little show and tell, I did a before and after of the sweet pea tin, quite an improvement, I think.
Aunt Inez and Uncle Leonard were always favorite visitors at our house when we were growing up and of course all through our adulthood. Leonard was a lumberjack, just like my dad, they were best friends too. He always had candy and always had energy to throw us up in the air, and thank goodness always caught us on the way down. I don't remember ever seeing Inez without a smile, her eyes were always crinkly and sparkling with good nature, and she baked the best pies on the planet. My mom was the queen of fried chicken and homebaked bread, Inez queen of the pastry world. They never made it into the history books, but sure made their way into a lot of people's hearts. I'll be going home to see Inez laid to rest next week, and say my sad goodbyes, but happy knowing she and Leonard and mom and dad are all back together, maybe talking about their younger days of camping out on the American River and panning for gold that sparkles in the sand there, but just darned hard to gather up. I miss them all.
Well, my husband was trying to put up sheetrock to finish the basement, tripping over boxes we've never unpacked since we moved here and we are maybe moving again, who knows kind of thing, but we are trying to get the house on the market. Anyway, I made a spur of the moment decision to pack up the boxes and take them to Clarinda to store until we decide what on earth we are doing (stay tuned). In the meantime, I stopped in Des Moines on the way home at the Brass Armadillo antique mall, where I shop all the time. I am sure I now have my photo up in the break room as the wicked witch of antiques. It all started when I wanted to look in a locked case, just a bunch of wood stuff and the clerk would not open it until I told her exactly what I wanted to look at, as though my reaching in to pick up a wood bread board would cause the antique mall to collapse. She was snippy to me, I was snippy to her, then when I go check out there is a $100 plate that I never asked for on my bill! I will admit that despite hearing my mother's voice saying, "Elaine Lea, don't you dare..." I was not very pleasant, but honestly... Much more pleasant experiences in Valley Junction, Elinor's Woodinware is the most wonderful store and the owner just could not be nicer, then Shirlee at the Depot is also so nice and always has tons of bargains. Oh, and gas is 40 cents a gallon cheaper in Atlantic than in Iowa City--how????
I started to watch The Blind Side on TV last night, a movie I've been wanting to see. I didn't get far though, just to the part where the family has taken a homeless teenager into their home and the mother has realized that he's never been read to and there is a scene where she is reading to him and her young son. I was thinking how much I missed storytime now that the girls are older, when Grace asked "Mom, do you miss reading to us?" I told her I really do and asked if she missed being read to. To my surprise, she burst into tears and said she wished she wasn't too old for stories. Well, we shut off the tv and went in search of all the books we loved and even 13 year old Anna decided she wasn't too old for the Cat in the Hat (well, even I'm not too old for anything Seuss) and some Junie B Jones, and you always have to end with The Going to Bed Book. So, I guess I'm back in the storytelling business, we are going to start some more grown up books tonight, I think Cold Comfort Farm for starters.
We almost went to Clarinda this weekend and so glad we didn't as the tornados hit that side of the state, Clarinda doing fine, but other towns nearby, Thurman and Creston were hit hard. My nephew is a paramedic in Creston, he spent the night transporting patients from the hospital, where all the windows in the ER were shattered and the roof came off. My husband used to work in that ER, all very frightening, but happy that no one was hurt.
In the ebay world, still adding stuff to the store...
Oh, I am getting testy in my old age. I really love what I do and I am so lucky to have this group of wonderful customers and blog friends of like minds, but there is always the little irritation of the hostile... I usually try very hard to ignore the people who chastise me for the ruining of valuable antiques, as my heroine Amanda from Lost in Austen says "I take it on the chin and lose myself in Jane Austen"... Got another one today, and coming on the heels of just getting done watching the news and really not believing that we are back to saying raising kids is not work (in case you missed it, a woman who raised 5 boys "hasn't worked a day in her life" according to an "expert"), and I pretty much have had it with the insults thrown at we stay at home moms, and don't you tell me I can't paint that bowl! Yes, I heard the excuses that she didn't mean at all to insult stay at home moms, but I listened to her whole segment and she certainly did insult us. Makes it so much worse when it's women attacking women. I would never tell a mother who goes to work that she is a terrible person or that I am better than she, but I sure get it all the time. I know it is just as stupid as the person who once said to me "You probably love your adopted children even though they aren't your own", just thoughtless nonsense, but one does take offense! Thanks for letting me complain--I already emailed Karen and vented, told her I was going to try to not publish, but here I am doing it anyway!
We went to church this morning, we seem to have become one of those families that only make it on Easter and Christmas, but are planning to become much better at showing up! It was a lovely service, our choir director is from Hong Kong, and always loves seeing the girls, he is downright masterful at the piano, it was so beautiful.
I am spending the rest of the day in listing overload, inventory at an all time high, I think, and I also think its the best I've ever had, if I do say so myself. Here are a few pretties on the way....Oh, my computer just will not let me reply to comments, so I try to answer in new posts. Little red chicken will be an auction starting tonight (I hope, I often wear out before I get everything in the store)
My antiques usually fall into the 1890s category, but I do love 1940s kitchenwares. If I could have bunches of houses, I would have one all done in 1940s red and white and that wonderful jadeite green, another all cabin prims, another all chippy white paint and blue toile... Anyway, I can't collect houses, but I do collect 1940s tablecloths, which look wonderful even on a scrubbed pine harvest table. I just found this beautiful fabric at Heritage Designs in Amana (of course, I bought the blue version too), and had to paint a rolling pin especially for it. It is a happy little pin!
The bread board is special order, it is cream back and front, yellow edge, trying to finish the yellow spoon that goes with...
Well, I took my sparsely furnished checkbook to the Collector's Eye Antique Show in Cedar Rapids today, and again, had to borrow from the Bank of Husband, good thing my credit is good there...
Well, the show was amazing, as it always is, here are a few ready to sell things, plus I just finished more blue and whites. I am afraid most is in the arm and a leg price category, but it sure is the good stuff. The blue apple tray will be one million dollars (not really, but at $400, it is up there--the original blue milk paint is soooooo gorgeous, and it is quite large, don't mind a bit if it stays at my house!). The Painted Pony had an open house today too, oh, everything was so Simple Life wonderful, can't wait to go back with actual buying power.
In the background, some of my favorite things, Fat Hen Farm Dolls, early blue china and if you haven't noticed, I am enamored of the spice chest that I bought at Annies in Cascade and transformed with cupboard blue paint
Early One Piece Toy Rolling Pin
$28 for this cutie
The Spice Girls
The Early Littles
Finally, warmth and sunshine, I am re-taking a lot of my photos
Blue Willow Bowl
Oh, I do love my blue and whites!
Kreamer Pantry Tins
These are large canister size pantry tins that I painted, from the Kreamer company
Shaker Pantry Boxes
I was a really good girl and did not paint most of the mid 1800s pantry boxes, but I just had to allow myself these two, they are most gorgeous
Cupboard Blue Spice Tins
I decided these needed labels after all, back to the store for $85 set