Monday, December 27, 2010

The Flamingo In The Penguin Body!

Another great Christmas with my beautiful children and family.  Watching the grandchildren open their gifts and seeing their reaction - I wonder what memories they will have when they grow up and have children of their own?  It had snowed the night before and continued through the morning so after we ate and opened presents, the kids spent the afternoon having a snowball fight in the front yard.  Why do they think it is fun putting ice cold snow down the back of each others pants?  Well, at least they used the snow off my car so I didn't have to clean it off this morning.  Some of the kids didn't have gloves, but that didn't stop them.  I probably should have some extra gloves on hand just in case it snows again on our family Christmas get-together.  Also, boots or extra shoes might be a good idea.  Besides the kids, there were several of the older guys out there playing in the snow, too.  But, not Grandma.  No, I'll just watch from the warmth of the house, thank you.

Looking around the living room and kitchen after everyone left, you could see that it was a good day for all.  Small scraps of wrapping paper under the chairs, cookie crumbs on the couch, leaves, dirt and puddles of melted snow on the floor, moved chairs, ornaments in different places on the tree and a dirty glass here and there were the signs of a very happy family Christmas.  After picking up a few things and getting the last of the dirty dishes in the dishwasher, I sat down in my rocking chair.  As my hound dog, Bronx, climbed onto the couch (he thinks it's his), he laid down, yawned and let out a loud sigh.  Yep, we were both just too tired to do anything else.  His job is to follow the little ones with food in their hands and clean up if dropped on the floor and he is quite good at his job.   

So, you ask, what does the title have to do with this blog?  Well, you know, I am never too tired to get on the computer and think about my  online stores. 

It's time to think about the new year (I can clean up later).  Time to remove the "Merry Christmas" pictures.  Need to find a winter picture.  Burrrrr - oh, I dislike the cold.  The snow is pretty, but give me the warm sand on the beach, palm trees and flamingos.  Then I came across this picture.  Oooh, yes!  I'm sure he is feeling exactly how I feel and is lamenting to whoever will listen.  Looking toward the heavens he wails "I am a flamingo in a penguin body."   

Monday, December 13, 2010

The Search for the Perfect Christmas Tree

Yesterday, my daughter, son-in-law and newest grandson, Jascha, went in search for my Christmas tree.  I have to have a real tree - it is just important to me.  As a young child, we didn't have a Christmas tree on Christmas.  At times we decorated the fireplace at my Grandmother's house and then a little later, my Grandmother did get one of those artificial silver trees with the revolving color light that changes the silver to green, blue, red and yellow.  Oh, I enjoyed rocking in my rocking chair watching the colors change on the shimmering tree.  It was pretty, but, in my heart I always wished we had a real tree.  The first year I was married, my husband and I bought a tree for my Grandmother.  We picked it out, took it over to her house, set it up and decorated it.  I don't believe we told her we were going to before we did it - it was like my surprise to her - I was giving her something that I just knew she had always wanted.  Looking back I'm not sure she was all that excited about it.  Oh, she smiled and let us put it up.  But come to think it, her expression was probably more of an "OMG, what am I going to do" expression.  (she would have used the term "goodness" not "God").  By the next Christmas, my Grandmother had moved to a different town and my oldest daughter was born so no more surprise Christmas trees for my Grandmother.  How we pick out my Christmas tree has changed over the years.  There were a few years that we had an artificial tree back in the late 1970s and early 1980s but, since then it has been back to the real trees.  Jascha is my youngest grandson and he is now the Christmas tree approver for me.  Yesterday was his second year for this most important duty.  You see it must be the most beautiful tree in the lot with something that sets it apart from all the rest.  Most important, it must be a hugable tree.  As you can see, Jascha has the process down pat.  It must past the smell test,  then he makes sure that there are no missing needles and then of course, the taste test.
 It is obvious, he is a perfectionist when it comes to Christmas trees and understands how important picking out the perfect Christmas tree is for Grandma.  After running between the rows of trees, some short and some tall, he finally finds the Christmas tree that is worthy.  Once we get the tree to Grandma's house, we put it in its stand and feed it some water, making sure the best side faces the front for all to admire.  Also want to make sure there is plenty of room around the tree for presents from Santa.  We'll let it sit for a day before decorating so the branches can fall into place.  Ah, looks perfect.  Now, Grandma, what about those flamingos?      

Friday, December 10, 2010

I Love That Pottery!

Piney Woods Pottery Vase 

Cagle Road Pottery Candle Liner

I'll have to be honest - there aren't too many pieces of pottery that I don't like. I'm not even sure that I could tell you the styles that I prefer. When I lived in Indiana, there were the potteries located in the Nashville (Brown County) area that we use to visit quite often. When my daughter lived in Tennessee, we visited the Sevierville and Pigeon Forge areas - great pottery places in the artisan areas. I was always fascinated watching the people spin the pottery using their hands to shape and mold the pieces. Now that I live in North Carolina, I find the Seagrove, NC area is one of the largest communities of potters consisting of over 100 potteries in a 20 miles radius. Having the longest continual history of pottery making in the United States, the Seagrove area was settled in the late 1700s of mostly English and German decent. The Seagrove Pottery area is located in central North Carolina and includes Randolph, Moore, Montgomery and Lee counties. Untouched by urban growth, the area is simple beautiful and is located just east of the Uwharrie National Forest. It is like going back in time driving along the back roads to reach the different pottery shops. In fact, a lot of the pottery shops have picnic tables for visitors to picnic and just enjoy the serenity of the area. While the tradition of Seagrove pottery began more than 200 years ago, there is a unique blend of potters - some are the eighth and ninth generations of potter families, some settled in the area from the 1960s and 1970s “hippie” generation and some are new potters. What brings them together is their love for making some of the most beautiful and unique pottery in the world. Here are three pieces of North Carolina pottery that I have for sale at Carolinabluelady Vintage Collectibles. These aren't vintage pieces as I resell pottery for several Seagrove area potters -

Cagle Road Pottery Basket
The Piney Woods Pottery vase at the upper right hand side has beautiful applied blue irises.  Underneath is the candle liner or holder from Cagle Road Pottery with its beautiful dogwood motif.  And, the Raggedy Ann and Andy basket with the braided handle and hearts to the left is just so sweet.  These three great NC pottery pieces are at my eCrater store.  I do have other North Carolina pottery pieces at my Auctiva Commerce store and my BISI store    I'm sure you will find something that will catch your eye.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Lunch At The Five & Dime With My Grandmother

I loved spending time with my Grandmother when I was little.  When we didn't live with her, I would still visit her on weekends or a week here and there.  I loved watching her sew.  When I was really little around 3 and 4 years of age (early 1950s), she would let me sit on the sewing machine extension and watch her.  I loved seeing how fast she could get that needle going and listening to the whining hum of the machine - it always whined higher the faster she would go.  She was a dressmaker by trade and had her own business.  She not only did alterations, but also made clothes for others.  I loved watching her customers trying on their clothes and her pinning and marking the alterations to be made.  She would let me play with scraps of material so that I could make clothes for my dolls.  There was a card table next to her sewing machine for handwork and I had a chair across from her so I could work too.  She always had a radio on - we would work, listen to music and talk.  And, when I got tired of sitting, I could dance in front of the floor length mirror and pretend I was a ballerina.  Every once in a while I would check to see if she was watching me (it would embarrass me if she did) and she was always working on her sewing project not paying any attention to me so my freedom of dancing could continue.  She never called me a princess, but I was definitely her princess just like my oldest granddaughter is to me.

Every Saturday morning, she would go downtown to get her notions, supplies and materials needed for the next week.  If I was staying with her, I would get to go downtown to shop with her.  We got dressed up and would catch the Delaware-Central 19 bus to go downtown.  I loved her holding my hand when we walked up those big steps of the bus and the bus driver smiling at us.  She always bought most of her notions at J.C. Penney's.  This store was located on the Circle in Indianapolis and the Soldiers and Sailors Monument was in the middle.  Here is a picture of it (Photo by Ruth Reichmann) - copied this off the Internet so hopefully, I'm not in too much trouble. 

It was  really tall and there were cascading water falls on two sides of it.  It was so beautiful.  The fabric department at J.C. Penney was on the second floor.  It was so much fun touching all of the fabrics and feeling the different textures - velvet, corduroy, flannel, satin, silk and organza.  I think my favorite fabric was polished cotton - it was so shiny and smooth.  I know, sounds weird, but I was a child.  And, yes, I still have to touch everything when I go shopping for clothes or material.  Now, if we were going to more than one store, it was hard keeping up with her - she walked fast.  And, there was no such thing as a mall.  We had to walk out in the weather, cross busy streets and it was noisy and so many people.  But it was all worth it because we always got to eat lunch at the five and dime.  We had a choice of Woolworth's, Kresge's or the G.C. Murphy dime store.  Sometimes she would let me choose.  Usually, we had to wait a few minutes so we could get two seats to open up together.  I loved watching all the people while we waited and the anticipation of a waitress asking me what I wanted to eat made me feel so special.  

After we ate, we would have to walk back to the Circle to the bus stop and catch the bus back home.  Did I tell you that my Grandmother was a fast walker?  My legs were always hurting by this time and I couldn't wait to get on the bus and sit down in those big seats.  But, once we arrived home and she was putting away her threads, zippers and seam binding, I was looking forward to going shopping with my Grandmother again and eating lunch at the five and dime.           

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Midwest Memories from an ESN Blogger - Button Banter

This morning I was catching up on some blogs that I follow from some fellow eCrater sellers.  I thoroughly enjoy reading Button Banter.  Joyce also writes the blogs - Postscripts from The Postcard Emporium and Grandma Seidar's Recipes.  It only takes a few minutes, whether you are reading her blogs or reading her "About Me" pages on her eCrater stores, that you feel that you have just met your long lost best friend.  I don't know if it is because she is from the Midwest or grew up in the 1950s or was greatly influenced by her grandmother, but it's like I am looking in the mirror when reading her stories and sharing her memories.  Joyce also has three eCrater stores that you need to visit - Melodies Forgotten and The Postcard Emporium will take you back in time.  You might be able to find a postcard of a familiar place of your past.  I sure was. 
Here is a postcard of the Das Deutsche Haus in Indianapolis, Indiana.  Now called the Athenaeum, this building is located near downtown at 401 E. New York Street, not too far from where I grew up as a small child.  This building was built as two wings starting in 1893 and finishing in 1898.  One of the architects was Bernard Vonnegut, grandfather of novelist Kurt Vonnegut and a very prominent family of Indianapolis, In.  You really need to check out The Postcard Emporium as Joyce also includes names and addresses on the vintage postcards as a way for people to find geneology information.  I just find this fascinating.  

I know, got carried away again in memories.  Just can't help it.  Well, I'm off to look at some more postcards.  Why don't you check out my friend's blogs.  Joyce would love to share her memories with you, too.

And, one more thing, don't forget to join us over at ESN.  We love to share ideas and talk.