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Heirlooms & Keepsakes ~ Rogie & Logie December 14, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Home & Garden, People.
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37 comments

I treasure a number of heirlooms and keepsakes from my maternal grandparents and my Great Aunt Edie.

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The oldest heirloom is a walking stick carved by my great great grandmother’s suitor.

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You can read more about it here:  A suitor who just didna suit her.

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My grandfather enjoyed travel as well as working in his woodshop . . . where he transformed a tray purchased overseas into a table.

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He made matching bedside tables.  I have this one and my sister has its fraternal twin.

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This rocking chair belonged to Great Aunt Edie.  After she died it lived in my parents attic until I requested it ~ painted by dad and re-cushioned by mom.

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My grandfather made this jewelry box for my grandmother, inlaid with her initials.

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Another view.

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My grandfather’s shaving mirror sits on a shelf in our kitchen.

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When my grandparents visited the Middle East in 1965, they brought back this Bible from Jerusalem for Aunt Edie.

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Along with a piece of palm from Palm Sunday, carefully preserved inside the front cover.

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I wear this turquoise ring given to my great aunt by her sister, my grandmother, in 1918 as they arrived in the states from Scotland.

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This pewter tea set sat in my grandmother’s dining room for years until she passed.  In time, my mother passed it on to me.

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This copper teapot also came from my mother’s family.

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This tin coffee pot (from relatives in Vermont) rounds out the set.

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My mother had this Scottish pitcher on her hutch until I adopted it.

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“Here’s a health to them that’s awa!” ~ Burns

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Here’s where it lives.

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This two shelf unit may have been made by my grandfather.  I remember it hanging on Aunt Edie’s bedroom wall.

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Also from Aunt Edie, this wooden letter holder made by my grandfather.

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My grandfather’s pewter baby cup brought over from Scotland.

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Another view.

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My grandfather loved working with watches and building clock cases.  He gave us this coin clock when we got married.  My brothers and sister each received one.

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My grandfather also made this shelf clock which keeps great time, as long as we change the battery.

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As far back as I can remember, Edie had these plates hanging on her wall.

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And the other.

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And this special Christmas plate that served up Scottish Shortbread.

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The painted glass pitchers belonged to my grandmother who may have done the painting herself.

Or maybe she bought them at the Church Bazaar.

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My mom’s childhood desk lived with us when we were kids.  Later, BFF and I used it as the scoreboard for darts.

Now we use it as a message board in the dining room.

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Inside, you can see an antique wooden xylophone.  Both the desk and the xylophone may have been made by my grandfather.

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My grandfather did make this Tea Caddy hiding behind that Santa.

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Here’s a better view.

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Mom made this Santa.  Aunt Edie made Lulu for mom.  I played with her too.  Check out the rips and tears . . . Lulu was well loved.

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As most keepsakes are.

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Aah . . . that’s better!

Related posts:  A Family Heirloom (Grannymar)

Next Sunday, I’ll share some treasures and keepsakes from dad’s relatives in Vermont.

All I Want For Christmas . . . December 10, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Home & Garden, Humor, Simplify Your Life.
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40 comments

When we go to someone’s home for dinner or a party, we often bring a small hostess gift ~ flowers, wine, chocolate, or a bakery item.

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This Thanksgiving, we went to my niece’s apartment in Tampa.

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Earlier this year, we helped her furnish the apartment by giving her our sofa.

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Pick up, not delivery.

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As a hostess gift this Thanksgiving, we brought the matching love seat.

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We tossed it in the back of the van with the coolers of food.

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At the other end, we set it up before proceeding with the feast.

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Perfect!  A made-to-order spot for it under the windows.

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Giving away the love seat left a “small hole” in our living room.

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“All I want for Christmas is . . . a new sofa.  A new sofa.  A new sofa.”

Until Santa stops by on December 25th, we filled it with . . . lawn furniture.

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“Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.”

Aah . . . that’s better! 

No Mailing Lists! December 3, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Bulletin Board, Home & Garden, Humor, People.
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36 comments

devious-hobbesThe moment we stepped into the Sarasota Home and Garden Show, a travel company minion accosted us.

The spokesperson shoved an entry form and a pen into my hand.

“Fill this out for a chance to win a Lowe’s Gift Card.”

Donald-Duck-BaseballI glanced at the form and saw blanks for name, address, phone number, e-mail, birth date, income bracket, children, pets, requested last meal, etc.

I started to hand the form back.  Blank.

He pointed to signs all over the table:

NO MAILING LISTS.

I looked back at the form wondering why they wanted so much information if they didn’t plan to use it.

Evil QueenNoting my reticence, he said all they needed was my name, address, phone number, birth date, and signed consent so they could call me when we won.

I glanced down at the signed consent portion of the form and started reading.

He interrupted my endeavor to “interpret” the language for me.

The-Pink-PantherQuestions swirled through my mind:  Why would a travel company give away a Lowe’s Gift Card?

Why did they need so much information just to contact the winner?

Why was I still standing here talking to Barker Bob?

I placed the blank entry form and pen on the table and turned away, ignoring their continued pleas for me to Enter & Win.

Aah . . . that’s better! 

Someone asked about the falling snow.  To activate on your WordPress blog:

Dashboard ~> Settings ~> General . . . scroll down and click the box that says “Show falling snow on my blog until January 4th.”

The Perfect Writer’s Retreat December 2, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Home & Garden, Humor, Writing & Writers.
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56 comments

While cruising around Terra Ceia Island, we stumbled across the perfect writer’s retreat.

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Situated on a corner lot, the house overlooks the banks of Terra Ceia Bay.

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Imagine writing at a desk in that turret, underneath the weathered vane.

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Gazing out at blue skies, serenaded by sea breezes and wandering muse.

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Of course, if we moved, we’d miss our neighbors . . . like Ichabod Ibis.

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As well as Ida, Iago, Irene, Igor, Igraine, Ike, Ignatius, Ian, and Icarus.

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Aah . . . that’s better!

Marvelous Benches & Whimsical Chairs November 24, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Art & Photography, Home & Garden, Humor, Mindfulness.
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40 comments

While at Mixon Fruit Farms, we stumbled across some marvelous benches.

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Natural.

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Unadorned.

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They brought to mind other marvelous benches and whimsical chairs.

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Not natural.

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Or unadorned.

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But fun.

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Each designed to encourage us to press the pause button and relax.

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C’mon . . . pull up a dolphin and set a spell.

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Aah . . . that’s better.

 

Lizard Mania November 18, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Fun & Games, Home & Garden, Humor, Nature.
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45 comments

IMGP3570A few nights ago, we spent 20 minutes catching a lizard in the lanai.

BFF reached up to the ceiling and “almost” got it in the bucket first try.

It escaped, raced around the room, and hid under the corner bookcase.

We had to take everything off the shelves, lay the bookcase down on its side, and . . .

“Got it!”

Almost.

We chased it around the room a few more times.  At last, BFF caught the lizard for real, took it outside and released it.

Yay!

During Lizard Mania, Tigger sat on the other side of the sliding glass doors flicking his tail and yowling to be allowed to join the hunt.

Tigger is better at catching lizards than we are, but they aren’t good for him. So we muddle along the best we can so he doesn’t have to do the dirty work.

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We’re not convinced that he appreciates our consideration.

Aah . . . that’s better!

Until The Worm Turns November 16, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Home & Garden, Humor, Life Balance, Nature.
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25 comments

Weather and its aberrations, permutations, and precipitations formed part and parcel of many of my grandfather’s missives:

Mickey-Lounging

* 12/29/57 ~  “There is still a world without snow up here.  So mild it almost spoils going to Florida.”

* 7/20/58 ~ “We expect Frank and Margaret to come today and Webb and Pete. It was to be a picnic at Summers Falls but it is so cool I wonder if we may not eat here at the house. It is cold much of the time. We almost needed a fire today.”

* 1/16/59 ~ “It is icy today on the roads.  The cream truck rolled over on Clifford Best’s hill.  School did not keep because of the roads.”

* 2/19/59 ~  “This is our coldest morning.  It was 60 degrees in our rooms this morning and the windows are well frosted.  It must be 30 below.  I’d rather be in Florida.”

* 12/29/63 ~ “It is cold tonight.  Down to ZERO at 4:30 P.M. by the new thermometer.  I was out just now and decided it wasn’t lying.

* 5/7/67 ~ “It was 29 degrees this morning with a white frost showing when we got up.  I find time to run up to Hanover to see how stocks are doing. The blue chips are doing better, so, so am I.  I mowed the front part of the lawn just now.  It is cold though and I needed mittens. Some lawn weather!

Goofy-Under-An-Umbrella* 5/26/67 ~ “I still have some gardening to do here and at Rae’s.  It is a very late Spring.  It is a gloomy day today with rain.  Yesterday there was 5 inches of snow in Montpelier ~ none in Hartland.  Just rain and cold rain.

It should warm up sometime.

And it did . . . 3 weeks later:

Mickey-In-Hammock* 6/17/67 ~ “We are in the midst of a hot spell, 85 and 90, on the outside in the shade.  We almost went to the Cape this weekend but Margaret thought it was too hot to go so here we are.

We have talked some of a trip to the Expo 67 but that is still on ice.  I have picked 1 berry.  They are very late.”

* 4/18/73 ~ “We have been having bare ground for some time but today the worm turned. It gave us a snow and blow. Only 5 inches but a nasty day.”

* 1/19/75 ~ “There was a foot of snow in the drive. It was heavy and took about an hour to clear. It is all done and I am resting while the coal makes dust and the wood snaps in the kitchen stove.

Mickey-Surfer* 4/1/76 ~ “The brook!  It is 50 ft. wide under the kitchen window and probably 3 feet deep.  Quite a river.  The cat is well!  He chases wind blown leaves and is real frisky.  Rae is 93, April 26.  We got up at 6 o’clock yesterday and today.  No time to waste.

Aah . . . that’s better!

 

 

DIY Projects, Work Bees, & No Cavities! November 9, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Home & Garden, Humor, Life Lessons.
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22 comments

Donald-DuckaIn letters written during his retirement, my grandfather shared tales of “work bees” (think Quilting Bees, not Spelling Bees) as well as many DIY projects.

As any handy-man knows, some projects require a bit of figuring, hunting, muttering, and Yankee ingenuity:

* 1/14/62 ~ “Tomorrow I think I will start a piping job in the kitchen.  I have the pipe and fittings. It is just a case of being ambitious enough to start tearing things to pieces.

I went on a work bee Wednesday evening.  We had a lot of folding wood chairs given us.  We glued up and repaired 21 chairs.”

* 10/15/62 ~ “I have done some work on the kitchen since you were up.  I worked 2 weeks on it.  I understand it looks better.

We had a bee and put in the cement floor in the Legion House yesterday. Expect to have another work bee next week end. They want to get it fixed up before cold weather sets in for good. And deer hunting.

3D-Ape* 3/27/67 ~ “I just got a problem solved so I can relax long enough to write.  I installed a baseboard heater under the windows in the living room with a wall thermostat to install over the desk, away from the direct heat. I wired it up and turned it on. There was a flash and it threw the breaker in the box. So I began to figure, hunt, trace wiring, and mutter to myself.

I decided I had wired it all right and it might be the wrong thermostat, or defective. This morning I got a replacement.  This afternoon I hooked it up and we are in business.  It works OK.  I had stayed awake a night or two trying to figure what I could have done which was wrong.”

* 1/24/72 ~ “The stoker had a bad spell of shearing ash shaft pins. I worked two days finding the trouble to be lax adjustment of the chain which carries out ash.  I readjusted it and it is functioning properly again.  It took two days, in grease, to find it and about ½ hour to fix it.  My know-how was bad, at first, as Ernest English would say.”

Mickey-Ta-DaaaPerhaps my favorite excerpt in the DIY category was his pronouncement at the end of this plumbing project:

* 5/21/60 ~ “I have been busy.  I decided to change the location of the tub and lavatory to get the piping away from the wall.  I did all of it but two joints which Hi did to show me how.  I turned on the water and “No Cavities!”  It did not leak.” 

Aah . . . that’s better! 

It’s Done & Dusted! October 7, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Bulletin Board, Home & Garden, Humor.
Tags: , , ,
44 comments

Despite what I said yesterday, some projects benefit from completion.

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If we had stalled mid-way through the painting project, our kitchen would still be strewn all over the living room.

Bananas, dish drainer, knives, and tea kettle by the back door.

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Coffee maker and spatulas in the midst of “Control Central.”

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Slow cooker, onions, Ninja, and recipe box in the spare bedroom.

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Although placement of the toaster next to the recliner might have come in handy for late night snacks, I wanted to return kitchen items to the kitchen.

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Including Tigger’s food and watering station.

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But before we could roll up the last drop cloth, we needed to move the hutch and other furniture away from the BIG wall.

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Away from the wide arc of potential paint splatters.

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That meant emptying out the dining room hutch.

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And providing temporary housing to its populace on the dining room table.

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While keeping my fingers crossed that BFF would NOT upend the table with an errant ladder.

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What?  He hit the chandelier with the ladder.

Twice.

Tigger heard him too.

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And an errant ladder leg took a hunk out of the bookcase BFF made me a few years ago.  But it’s fixed now . . .  so we’ll say no more about it.

At last it was time to tackle the last wall.  The BIG wall.

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To give you a sense of the scale, here’s the other side of the room after he finished the accent wall.

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These bookcases are 6 1/2 feet high.  The ceiling is . . . higher.  Much higher.

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That’s why BFF had to swing ladders around.  So I crossed my fingers and held my breath.

And voila!

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It’s DONE and DUSTED!

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Except for a few loose ends.  Like hanging photos.

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Hope you’ve enjoyed this squirrel’s eye view.

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Aah . . . that’s better!

Related posts:  Love What You’ve Done With The Place * Another Fantasy Adventure

Another Fantasy Adventure October 2, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Home & Garden, Humor, Travel & Leisure.
Tags: , , , , ,
39 comments

On Sunday, we traveled across town to check out model homes in The Inlets. Of the rooms we toured, this game room captured our imagination the best.

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We could have stayed here for hours playing pool inside or wandering through the sliders to cool off in the adjoining pool and soak away cares in the spa.

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Stopping between shots to admire our $1.4 million yacht parked just outside the game room.

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The tropical colors of the space soothed our lusty appetites, as did the help yourself hors d’oeurves.

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Before moving on to the next home, we wandered outside, kicked off our shoes, and climbed aboard the 3 bed 2 bath boat in the basin.

Topside, BFF allowed the breeze to ruffle his captain’s cap.

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Back inside, we took one last longing look at the pristine calm.

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Before returning to the current reality of our life.

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We are making progress.  Slow and steady progress.

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In due course we’ll reclaim our ZEN.

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Aah . . . that’s better!

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