June 27, 2013

Thursday Thrift Finds ~ All By Myself

Church rummage sales are among my favorite kind of sales, prices are reasonable, and the items up for sale are often times real treasures.

My friend is the head of her church rummage sale and was watching the donations for Pyrex bowls for me. She called to report none were donated this year, but she hoped to see me on Saturday at the sale. I had to explain that I won't be able to attend this year, all the girls in the family are going to Lake Geneva to celebrate my sweet sisters birthday. Come on over today and shop we will be here until noon.

Three workers busy pricing last minute donations, setting up displays, and all the wonderful treasures were spread out in the church hall. I was getting first pick, a dream come true for me.

I did pick up a few items from the sale, handkerchiefs were priced at ten cents, such lovely tatting, and lace and the best part is that I always have a hankie in my purse or my coat pocket.

I have a weakness for matryoshka dolls/nesting dolls, and will pick them up whenever I find them if the price is reasonable. This set of matryoshka dolls/nesting dolls stamped made USSR was priced at only two dollars.

I thought this pin was whimsical and fun, I have no idea where White Oaks is located, but my coat lapel will be sporting this cutie come the wintertime.

I picked up a few cookbooks, and a biography about Madame Curie written by her daughter Eve Curie copy write 1939, and several children's book that I will share with you later.

If I would have had room for this blackboard, which is really green, it would have come home with me.

Two sided chalk board with a chalk tray, every child's dream.
Rowles company Arlington Heights, Illinois was priced at $15.00.

I was taking a quick peek through the clothes racks when I saw the dress hanging katywampus from the hanger. While I was taking these photos, my friend told me a story about the dress. It seems a parishioners daughter owned this dress, but she suddenly passed away. This dress has been sitting in a closet at the parishioners house for over twenty years, this year she was finally able to release the dress and donate it.
Strapless southern plantation style dress.
Pink lace, flowers with gold accents.
Made in the U.S.A an Loralie original.
After my friend told me the story about the dress she had a light bulb moment, instead of selling the dress she was going to donate it to our theater group in town. It will be a perfect costume for a play.

It makes me wonder about all the stories that thrift treasures could tell me if only they could talk.


June 25, 2013

Book Give Away~Ladies' Night by Mark Kay Andrews

A mild reaction to a vaccine had me staying low this past weekend since it appeared that the ice pack and I would be spending a lot of time sitting around, I grabbed a few books to read.

I had been waiting for the release of Mary Kay Andrews new book Ladies' Night, and placed my name on the reserved list for this title at my local library, as did several of her other fans. I decided that since I was home bound for the weekend I would purchase the book to help while away the hours.

Here is Amazon's book description.

Take a splash of betrayal, add a few drops of outrage, give a good shake to proper behavior and take a big sip of a cocktail called…Ladies' Night!

Grace Stanton’s life as a rising media star and beloved lifestyle blogger takes a surprising turn when she catches her husband cheating and torpedoes his pricey sports car straight into the family swimming pool.  Grace suddenly finds herself locked out of her palatial home, checking account, and even the blog she has worked so hard to develop in her signature style.  Moving in with her widowed mother, who owns and lives above a rundown beach bar called The Sandbox, is less than ideal.  So is attending court-mandated weekly "divorce recovery" therapy sessions with three other women and one man for whom betrayal seems to be the only commonality.  When their “divorce coach” starts to act suspiciously, they decide to start having their own Wednesday "Ladies' Night" sessions at The Sandbox, and the unanticipated bonds that develop lead the members of the group to try and find closure in ways they never imagined.  Can Grace figure out a new way home and discover how strong she needs to be to get there? 
Heartache, humor, and a little bit of mystery come together in a story about life’s unpredictable twists and turns.  Mary Kay Andrews' Ladies' Night will have you raising a glass and cheering these characters on. 

From the opening paragraph, when I discovered Grace Stanton, the main character of this novel was a blogger, I was intrigued and spent most of my Saturday happily reading this book.

The insight into writing a blog post, the time it takes to produce that perfect photo, to the heart break when someone steals/borrows your ideas and posts them as their own, I related to. Not that any of that has occurred in my blogging experience, I just could relate.

Last June I blogged about Mary Kay Andrews book Spring Fever, you can read that post, here.  As you might have deduced I am a huge fan of this author.

Since I purchased a copy of Ladies' Night, something I hardly ever do, have finished reading this fun book, I thought I would pass the book on to someone. Perhaps you have been waiting to read this book or you are someone who would like to experience Mary Kay Andrews writing style, I would like to pass the book on.

Just leave me a comment that you are interested in reading this book, and I will happily send it to you. If more than one person is interested in the book, I will place names in a hat and draw the name whom I will send the book to. All I ask is that you read the book, than pass it on to someone else. It is my hope that who ever receives this book will not sell it for profit.

This is a fun summer read and I want to pass it forward. I don't mind sending this book anywhere in the world as long as you have a desire to read it and will pass the book forward.Photobucket

June 24, 2013

Thrift Share

My thrift finds for the week . . . 
Chairs were the theme of this weeks thrift finds.

When I saw this wooden chair I knew I had to get it.
This reminded me of all picnics in the yard with relatives.

How many hands touched the back of this chair, perhaps leaning 
over the back to whisper I love you or to spread some juicy gossip.
Where has this simple wooden chair been and how many people 
sat on this wooden seat?

What a shame that the original label is unreadable.

The legs and the cut out work on this chair
made me like it from the get go.

Clean lines with a flair.

Missing a rung and certainly need tightening up
but once painted a soft off white it will make
a nice accent chair in my spare bedroom.

I found six yards of this beautiful Wyn Haven fabric.
I believe the birds are pheasants, curtains, perhaps
a reupholstered seat on a chair. Whatever this
fabrics is used for it will be stunning.

I'm often found at these link parties;
 Apron Thrift Girl for Thrift Share Monday
Sir Thrift A lot for Thriftasaurs
A Living Space for The Nifty Thrifty
Hey, Mom What's for Dinner for The Penny Worth Project
Coastal Charm for Nifty Thrify Tuesday
Thrifty Groove for Thrift Thing Friday
Me and My Shadow for Magpie Monday

June 21, 2013

Steel Rimmed Strawberry Baskets and Fresh Strawberries

My friend picked me up for our lunch date, and as we were driving the back road to our destination, I spotted the homemade signs declaring a rummage sale. As my friend whizzed past the signs and the sale, she heard my loud intake of breath. "Did you want to stop at that sale?" she asked. "Why yes, yes I do", was my reply. She found the nearest driveway and turned around. I should mention that my friend is not a fan of vintage, mid century modern or rummage sales and thrift stores. Only a true friend participates in things that don't interest them. She is an awesome friend, indeed.

As we pulled into the rather long drive, I noticed many items that made my heart go pitter patter. I will show you everything I purchased in my thrift share Monday post, but I just needed to share these items with you today, because my daughter, sister and grandchildren picked strawberries and brought some to share with me.

Here are the objects of my affection.

Eighteen split wood berry baskets with metal trim, of which 
four are a larger size. Total cost of all the baskets, a meager $3.00.

Los Angeles Basket Co.
Bound with steel strip

Attractive steel strips of different colors surround each basket.

Don't these freshly pick strawberries look lovely?

Especially inside my vintage strawberry baskets.

Thanks for picking fresh strawberries and sharing them with me, dear loved ones. Now all I have to do is convince them to give me some of the strawberry jelly they are making. 

Freshly picked strawberries are the best, especially when some else does all the work!

June 20, 2013

Bloggers Help Book Become Bestseller ~ The Kitchen House

My youngest daughter belongs to a book club and recommended I read The Kitchen House, about an Irish indentured slave that is taken in by the slaves in the kitchen house, by Kathleen  Grissom. "Oh, mom you'll like it, it's kind of like The Help." So I sat down at my computer, logged on to our local library website, to reserve the book and found I was number eight on the waiting list. Several weeks later I was notified to pick up the book. That was on a Friday afternoon and by Sunday morning I had finished reading this historical novel.

Published in February of 2010 The Kitchen House, was Kathleen Grissom debut novel, so why in the summer of 2013 was there a waiting list for a book that's been around for a while.

Well, it appears that bloggers played a huge part in making this book reach the New York Times bestseller list.

The author, Kathleen  Grissom realized that the publishers weren't promoting her book, so she sent out copies of The Kitchen House to bloggers who had previously reviewed historical novels. The bloggers wrote positive reviews, book clubs started reading the book, and it became a New York bestseller.

Here is the book description from Amazon.

When a white servant girl violates the order of plantation society, she unleashes a tragedy that exposes the worst and best in the people she has come to call her family.
Orphaned while onboard ship from Ireland, seven-year-old Lavinia arrives on the steps of a tobacco plantation where she is to live and work with the slaves of the kitchen house. Under the care of Belle, the master's illegitimate daughter, Lavinia becomes deeply bonded to her adopted family, though she is set apart from them by her white skin.
Eventually, Lavinia is accepted into the world of the big house, where the master is absent, and the mistress battles opium addiction. Lavinia finds herself perilously straddling two very different worlds. When she is forced to make a choice, loyalties are brought into question, dangerous truths are laid bare, and lives are put at risk.

Each chapter of the book is written through the eyes of either Lavinia or Belle and gives the read a perspective from each of their worlds. 

This is not a fun filled summer read, but in my humble opinion a book worth reading. 

June 19, 2013

Someone Else's Memories Tossed in a Box

Walking past a broken down, tattered box you spot one item inside. How much do you want for this? If you take the whole box it's two dollars. I often come home with a box full of junk so I can have that one item.

This is what caught my eye inside the dilapidated box.

This is one of the sweetest photos. Looking at the photo brings back such fond memories of the front porch where I would play tea party with my friends, and if they weren't around my parents. 

What a sweet angelic smile touches this little girls lips, how ladylike she has crossed her ankles while she pours tea for her guest.

I find it hard to believe that a family member would not cherish this photo, rather than toss it in a rummage sale box. 

Also found in the ragged box was this type written obituary or perhaps it was to be a newspaper article, either way it was/is a very tragic story about a women's rayon dress catching on fire, her daughter who lived next door who came to her aid and her demise.

Family memories tossed in a broken down, tatter box from a house that needs to be cleaned out before they can sell it. Makes me wonder if my children will cherish my items, my memories that I have boxed up and have stored in my basement, or will someone in the future attend a rummage sale and purchase a broken down, shabby box filled with a few of my keepsakes.

June 18, 2013

Milwaukee Polish Festival 2

1981 marked the first Polish Festival in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, thirty two years later, the festival although one of the smaller heritage festivals is well attended.

I like Polish food, but NOT czarnia, which is soup with duck blood, my favorites are golabki, cabbage leaves stuffed with seasoned meat and rice, pierogi, dumplings filled with sauerkraut, potatoes, meats or fruits. My favorite is potato filled pierogi with sour cream. Of course, I had my all time favorite palcki, potato pancakes with applesauce.

I decided on a sampler platter for my first taste, I got to taste all of my favorites. 

Palcki with applesauce, sauerkraut with a kielbasa, golabki, and potato filled pierogis.

New to me was kraut balls, so I had to ask, what and how kraut balls were made.

She graciously explained while cooking her pierogis and palcki, that kraut balls were little balls of sauerkraut placed in batter and deep fried. I did not partake in this new to me cuisine, but I did Google the recipe, and it sounds pretty good.

Tyskie beer is imported from the city of Tychy in Poland and is quit popular at the festival.

Sobieski vodka made in Poland was also served, this year the Polish cherry bomb, I have not tasted Red Bull, so I have no idea what Wisniowka a semi-sweet fruit flavored cordial and Red Bull mixed together would taste like. I can recommend mixing cherry syrup into a beer very tasty.

I was excited to meet James Conroyd Martin, the author of Push Not the River, a novel based on the diary of a Polish Countess, I wrote a blog post in February about the book and my trip to Poland, you can view that post by clicking here. If you like historical novels, you will enjoy the journey that Mr. Martin takes you on with his three novels.

Maly Sklep or little stores showcased all things Polish.

Made in different parts of Poland, Polish pottery 
is my favorite even before vintage Pyrex.

Amber jewerly

Tee shirts...
more beer 
Polish humor with a take from the Got Milk ads.
For some reason, I don't want to see people walking around in
these shorts with at word dupa plastered across their bottom.
The Polish word dupa means derriere.
Oh yuck, duck blood soup.

Imported foods from Poland, beet salad with onions, mashed beets,
and fried carrots with celery, among other things. 

I enjoyed all things Polish during this fun filled weekend, I am looking forward to attending several other heritage festivals this summer, Italian, German and Irish Fest. 

If you are in the Milwaukee or Chicagoland area check out Milwaukee summer lakefront and ethnic festival schedule, you're sure to enjoy great music, food, and a whole bunch of fun.

June 17, 2013

Polish Festival Sights

Ahh, Polish Fest how I enjoyed you. Polish Fest is a three day heritage festival held each June in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where everyone is welcomed to celebrate Polish heritage.

Here are some sights from around the festival grounds.

This is a Kapliczka, or small chapel/shrine that was prominently displayed as a silent witness of people's faith.

This sweet lady dressed in her Polish costume demonstrated how to make Jezyki aka Polish porcupine ball/Christmas ornament. It takes fourteen separate papers with rolled points to make an ornament.

Wianki or flower head pieces are iconic of the Polish culture. In Polish history girls and young women always wore them for special occasions.

Three stages were set up around the festival, two hosted bands with dance floors where everyone was welcome to dance the polka, and a cultural staged featured Polish folk dancers.

This band featured an accordion and a squeeze box, my cousin Ruth from Dian's Timpalley, father would play his accordion at some of our family functions, great memories.

The Polka Champ from 1984 is certainly proud of his dancing skills, and his twenty nine year old title.

Polish dance troops from many different states performed on the cultural stage. It was interesting to see how different the costumes were from each region in Poland.

Drop in tomorrow for part two of the sights from Polish Fest 2013.