Wednesday, August 29, 2012

What we've been up to....

Why have my posts been so sporadic lately?

This was my backyard the weekend of August 10th...   

Little Keeper doing his Tom Sawyer impression....
Who knew.....
 Jumping up and down in the water could be soooo
much fun?!
We had about 6 inches of rain in an hour!
In parts of our yard it was up to 12 inches!
This was our backyard on August 25th!
more water!
Our large garage in the back yard probably had more than 6 inches inside!
We raised everything off the floor about 4 inches several years ago after hurricane Isabel...
so we decided after this day to work on raising everything at least 6 inches or more....
we were letting everything dry
and going to work on it this week 
water yesterday!
August 28th!
This picture is only the beginning
I wasn't brave enough to go back out
because there was so much lightening...
Mr.Keeper to the rescue!
I feel so bad for him.
He is just beyond outdone at this point.
At least nothing came into the house.
He goes down to the two manholes in the alley behind
our house to check on them and make sure they are not obstructed whenever we have
So he has done the same during these three storms.
Yesterday when he went out 3 other neighbors were standing there
picking leaves and gumballs off and just watching the manhole....
My husband comes out with his crowbar 
moves them aside 
 with a manly heave ho
popped the cover off to watch the water start quickly draining
They all cheered that he came to the rescue 
this is the end of it!
I have lived here 10 + years and have never had this kind of flooding,
even during several hurricanes...
only during Isabel did it get bad!
I'll try and get back to my usual fun stuff after we finish drying out!
Thoughts are with Louisiana right now!


Wednesday, August 22, 2012


It has been a busy week
winding down for the end of Summer...
Also lots of work which is a blessing!

Now I'm finally getting around to sharing
some of my favorite finds from a week or so ago!

We have a new Thriftstore
in the neighborhood
and these items were from my first visit there...
I have to make myself drive by because I am so tempted to stop!
I have found such great items there
and they are so reasonable!
Gasped...and grabbed this
green vintage Tupperware slicer and shredder!
Jade variations of anything vintage have been something I started collecting
back in college in 1995...
before Martha totally ruined the market for it!
 This cute little napkin was .10 cents!
The store was having a Christmas Summer sale...
they had cleared an Estate and there were literally TONS of  Holiday items!
Most had not been unpacked 
they were just thrown out in boxes on the floor
 and under racks of clothes....
I rolled up my sleeves and dug in!

I found this vintage flocked wreath crammed in a box 
with a bunch of 
crafty looking rabbits, etc.
No one would have thought to look for this in there!
SO excited...these flocked pieces are so hard to find.

 $1 dollar!
All the vintage items were just randomly thrown in with
other modern things so it took me a while...
Love this bow and several picks from the 40's and 50's.
Lots of mini Santa Claus and a few pipecleaner candy canes....
 My heart skipped a beat when I spied these mercury glass bead picks in the bottom
of a box! 
The start tree topper is going to go on my sons little Aluminum tree...
 LOTS of vintage mercury glass and Shiny Brite type ornaments
some with designs,bell shaped, etc!

This old box of leads were just so cool
 they were all in these individual boxes
for added neatness!
 The Kraft Ambrosia jar is going to be used to store craft supplies
loved the graphics on it...
The little perfume bottle was for Topaz...
my aunt used to wear that when she was younger so I had to get it.
 Everything from the bow to the perfume bottle went into one bag for 
a grand total of $4
That was my idea of Christmas!

 Linking up with 
Hope you are having a great week!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Can Can Brasserie and a late afternoon in Carytown.........

Last weekend
after my little adventure to Bygones..
I decided instead of going out for dinner,
I'd sit and have dessert and coffee
and get some writing done.
What better place 
than to sit in the window
(in Carytown, Richmond, Va )

I pulled up a chair 
and perused the desserts on the menu...
Let me tell you everything sounded delicious...
I finally decided on
a dessert which consisted of an orange ice cream,
anise/almond biscotti 
an espresso caramel with some sort of amazing sauce!
I wish I had written it all down.
Here is what it looked like!
A lot more than what I thought...
but what the heck..
.I skipped dinner because we never make it to dessert!
Let me just say
it was one of the best desserts I have ever eaten!
Everything is made in the restaurant,
ice cream and all.
I am usually not an anise fan...
but like most foods I find when they are done well...
certain flavors are not overpowering and end up being quite good.
That was totally the case with this!
The ice cream was not overly sweet with that sort of texture 
that manufactured does from all the corn syrup in it.
It was very creamy and the orange was light and fresh tasting.
The caramel had the most wonderful flavor ...
a hint of caramel and then the taste of coffee just barely sneaks in right at the end
with maybe a taste of the anise on the last note.
I could be completely wrong as to what was in this,
but it was excellent!
 I decided to try something different instead
of coffee....
They call this their
Paris Tea Latte...
Currant and Citrus black tea
sweetened with caramel and vanilla syrup.
A new favorite by far!
Although I think no one else will be able to make it right.
The wonderful thing about this was that
the flavors were not overpowering.
Usually anytime you go to a coffee shop and they add syrup it is 
waaay too much.
You hardly taste the real drink after they are done.
This had a wonderful light citrus taste
with just a hint of sweetness from the caramel and vanilla
that made it so smooth.
You got a nice whiff and quick taste of the cinnamon or 
whatever it was on top just as you took a sip!
I think I got into a bit of sensory overload!
 (Maybe I looked like Meg Ryan in when Harry met Sally)
The funny thing was that as I was eating....
I was also writing and I would stop and take a photograph
every so often as the light would change...
The sun was starting to set
and all photographers know that dusky light is the best.
After an hour or so
I gathered up my things and was getting up to leave when 
the couple behind me stopped me
and said they "wanted to be nosy"....
They thought I was a food critic!
They wanted to tell me about how great their dinner was
and then wanted to know what
I had eaten.
When their dessert came and they had to share with me
how good it was too!
I guess people aren't used to seeing others,
especially a woman, confident enough to sit and eat by themselves.
Probably the fact that I was writing as I ate
made them think it the most though.
I then told them about my photography, my blog and a few other
artistic endeavors.
They were really sweet and asked me to photograph their desserts!
I did but the light changed so much and my settings
were a bit off so the pics turned out a bit blurry.
It wouldn't do them justice to post them.
I said goodbye and left them to finish their desserts
and headed out into a rarity...
Cary Street totally closed down...

 Just a few people left from the
Watermelon festival earlier in the day...
some street musicians
and the cleanup crews...
Cary Street is never this empty or without cars....
Nacho Mama's a favorite for cheap eats...

Always love this painted lady at
Xtras cafe...
and lastly 
caught this out of the corner of my eye...

How awesome is this graffiti?
I'd put that metal panel in my house!
All in all it was a great impromptu visit...
Mr.Keeper and I will be heading back for our anniversary
Hopefully I'll be able to share some more pics of some
other favorites and a little more of Richmond.
Next time you are in Richmond or heading through
program your GPS to take you to Can Can!
You will not regret it!
Now go eat some dessert because I'm sure I made you totally hungry,

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Vintage Shopping fun!

When I was in Richmond
last weekend
I decided to take a few hours 
late in the afternoon to drop in to
one of my favorite places...
Lots of wonderful restaurants, one of a kind shopping, organic local grocery,
fun people to watch and just a wonderful place to walk.

Little did I know that on this particular
day the annual Watermelon festival was being held!
by the time I got there it was pretty much over 
but a lot of the shops had either never opened that day
or they were soon closing.
I made the decision to dash down 
to where I really wanted to
They specialize in vintage clothing
jewelry and accessories.
I had not been there in years
and really wanted to see the shop.
They were literally only going to be open
for 5 more minutes when I got there!
The girls were packing up the street display they had...
I decided to ask if they minded if I ran in?
In true Southern fashion 
"Sure, no problem and thanks for at least asking!"
How sweet?
You ask nicely and you get a nice answer!
Aren't you used to people saying
Heck no -we're closing!
 (Excuse the blue photo! I forgot to change my light setting!)
The store display windows done here are amazing works
of art in my opinion!
Peek at their web site to see several of the window displays
they are so gorgeous!
look here

Makeup counter!
Vintage type lipsticks, Mascara, perfume pots, 
the makeup tutorial book was so cool !
I wanted to buy the Violet Powder tin ..
but I have been trying to cut back on my purchases so I'm waiting!
Notice the cabinet everything is long vintage display case!
 Hats, Fascinators, Feather accents, and Tiaras!
What else could a girl need to get all dolled up?
Also a great display of postcards with retro and vintage images...
 Did I mention they
don't just sell ladies clothing and accessories..
they also sell Mens!
Notice the flasks, shaving brushes and tonics on the right of the counter
and the gentleman perched up on the middle shelf 
with his summertime suit and hat...
Loads of jewelry in those cases! and two more
rooms in the back with shoes and more clothes
even a wedding gown section!
 I didn't take too many photos because I knew
they were being gracious by letting me in at the tail end of the day.

The best thing was
 what I
 buy for myself.
I wear plus size clothing
and it can be very hard to come by.
I love pouring through the pages of Etsy looking for it
but I am always cautious because I know sometimes sizes aren't quite what
they seem in vintage.
 I looked through all the racks 
and when I got to the back room they had two
"Sale" racks!
Sale or Clearance?!
You know me- right up my alley...
I found this....
Handmade wrap dress!
I'm guessing from the 1940's or 50's.
 I love the colors and the collar...
it was labeled as a medium?!
But I slid it around me and I could completely close the wrap...
I snatched it up!
when something is handmade
sizing can be a guesstimate...
the person who tailored this did a beautiful job
with the seams and darts...
Here is a little close up of the flower detail...
The fabric is so soft from years of wear...
It reminds me of the patterns from feedsacks
but I know this couldn't have been feedsack there is too much fabric.
Want to know how much it was?
Added bonus was that it was a tax free weekend here so
no tax at all!
Now I just need somewhere to wear it!
Hope you enjoyed a peek at a wonderful store.
I plan on going back when it is a bit cooler
with more money and more time to take photos.
I'll show you the fabulous dessert I had at Can Can 
with a few more shots of Carytown.
Please go take a peek at the link of the storefront windows
they are so wonderful and true lovers of vintage will
totally appreciate it!
Happy Saturday!

Friday, August 10, 2012

Grand Day Out!

My little sister came home
last week for a visit and her Bridal Shower...
We traveled to Richmond to the home of
one of her best friends....
Here are a few pics from the shower...
creative and lovely...
 The girls....
 She is having peacock accents
so the hostess had this cake and cupcakes made by
a friend running a small bakery business out of her home...
very creative cupcakes indeed ...
Red Velvet w/ Buttercream icing!
They were delish!
 She designed the graphics for the invites and some of the decor...
Just my sisters style!
We played a cute
"He said...She said"
how cute are those!
  She also used some of her engagement photos for decorations
which was really simple but very cute...
As usual I forgot to photograph the gift I made for her....
I wanted to be creative
(of course)
so I did some browsing online
and had seen where a group of bridesmaids had given a bride
a gift of
"A Years worth of  date nights"
They gave her one box for every month with an idea and some sort of gift card...
I'm a bit poorer than that...
So I thought for a while
and it hit me!
I made her 13 envelopes...
One for the day after her wedding and 12 for the rest of the year.
They are supposed to open one every month
and inside
are 4 prompts for that month
to have them take an Instagram photo of whatever the subject is....
Things like
-Day after the wedding = self portrait of Bride and Groom-
-take a picture at your favorite place for dinner-
-10 a.m. on a Sunday -

Just some creative views of their first year as Mr. and Mrs.
(I just gave a few away ;)
Then I'm going to pay to have them all printed or put into an
Instagram book...
There are so many companies coming up with ways to print your Instagram 
photos now ...
onto tiny books...
Year long grids...
onto metal...etc!
Hopefully she really liked it!
I always seem to get behind when I'm making gifts and then
hurry to wrap and then realize I forgot to photograph them!
After everyone left she and I stayed to visit
and I went off to do a tiny bit of shopping and writing...
I'll share that story tomorrow...
Of course a few boys had to sneak in for those leftover cupcakes....
 Pretty cute ...
although 2 seconds later after they tried  to eat the beautiful feathers
 pretty much everyone decided Fondant
is not tasty!

A great time was had by all!
Vintage Shopping and some amazing French Desserts tomorrow!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012


a little late...
but better than none!

I actually found these items
at a store right around the corner from my house!
I used to have my own room
in the store for about 3 or 4 years where I sold
vintage and new items that mixed up quite lovely if I do say so myself!
 The store doesn't have a website or I'd link her up!

 I got three bags of these vintage rhinestones for $3
They are so lovely pretty...
I'm hoping to make some earrings for my sisters wedding with a few...
 These green glass beads were $1.25
and I got a little stack of about 12 or so of these
little bags with all sorts of cute graphics for $1
I thought the bags would be a cute to stash favors in
or to wrap jewelry with.
 My favorite find 
was this lotion dispenser...
Kitschy and green 
two of my favorite things!
I have a few other odd pieces of a vanity type set made of 
this green type plastic so this will fit in perfect!
O.K. so it wasn't super cheap
but when I saw it
I got all "OOOHHH I want that!"
So I waited a week and saved my change ;)
$7.95 (I think)
 Even has little gold feet...
 Yesterday the local artists group
I have been meeting with
had a journaling get together.
One of the members brought what looked like about 
20 or so stamps and donated them
"to a good home"
I took these two...
Zero dollars!
I love my TAG group!
 I guess these are not P.C. anymore
 I had to buy them when I saw them ....
they didn't make me want to smoke as a kid...
I just wanted the candy and we thought they were funny.
They also had candy lipstick and bullets too...
are those still O.K.?
Just a fun trip down memory lane!