Thursday, January 31, 2008

A Spinner of a Tale

This is what I am showing for tomorrow's Show and Tell Friday...but I'll be back to explain why it is very dear to me. Stay tuned!

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

"New" Finds

If you are an antiquer like my Dear Hubby and I, you will understand the frequent visits to antique stores, shops, antique malls, thrift stores, auctions, and even YARD SALES. Now way before I ever started selling antiques, I always went to antique shops, or antique malls. I would NEVER have thought of going to a yard sale. This was so "not me."

Well, many years later, I have since changed my tune...and even look forward to "finding" vintage items when I am out and about. I went to my first auction just 8 years ago. Never even realized these things went on in small towns around the country...I was finally in on the "secret!" With my TV career there wasn't much time for auctions. But I was instantly hooked!

So I was thrilled this past weekend when I found this lovely:

The photo does not do it justice. It is one of the largest Valentine's Day cards I have ever seen, at 15" across! Sure, there are little pieces damaged here and there, but still I was happy with my find. Marked Germany on the bottom, these paper wonders are hard to find after all these years. They are quite romantic and fit in with the Victorian themed decor...I've always liked them. And this one has beautiful PINK ROSES on it! Ooh la la.

I also found a pretty picture frame to put vintage photos in. Even though it is not old, I still thought it was a cute piece. The bottom picture in the frame is of my Grandpop and Grandmom in the 1930s.

There were some other items I found which you can check out in my "virtual store" here.

Looking forward to seeing whatever you may have found in the antique world, or something you crafted...or even thought about decorating in your home. Leave me a jazzy comment, I love to learn new things...from so many crafty and creative types the possiblities are endless.

Gotta use the new signature....I've always had stars in my i's!!!!!

Monday, January 28, 2008

Adding a Signature ~ Which One is Me?

I've been admiring other blogs with these nice, neat signatures at the end with the bloggers name. Well, being the curious sort, I decided it was time to try it out. So, there it is at the bottom of my post.

What do you think? I had to sort through 120 of them to find one I thought was ME. ONE HUNDRED AND TWENTY!!!!! After awhile I wasn't sure who I was so I just went with the one that made me smile the most.

I'll add to my blog more tomorrow when I post some of my latest vintage finds! One of them I was sooooo thrilled with, I can't wait to show it to you. And perfect for the upcoming holiday...

For now, have a great night!

(I think I'm going to LOVE this signature thing!)

A Very Bella Winner!

First I'd like to give a big THANK YOU to all the very BELLA gals who participated in my very first GIVEAWAY! It was tons of fun... the wheels are already turning about what to do for the next one.

Here is the vintage hat I put all of the names in...I was thrilled with how many entries there were for my first time doing this.

My Dear Husband reached in (he wouldn't admit this but he enjoyed taking part) and pulled out a name...

The winner of "A VERY BELLA GIVEAWAY".....the envelope please.....










CONGRATULATIONS, Carol of Sassafras & Lulu. You won! You won! You won!

I'll just need your information to send out the BELLA glittery banner. It will be sad to see it has been hanging in my office all this time. But I'm glad it's going to a great home! Please send me an email with the details.

Here are all of the entries...the scissors were flying on this one. Next time I might just assign random numbers but taking photos of the entries is a lot more fun. And the hat. Oh ESPECIALLY the hat! How often do you get to have a drawing out of a vintage hat?

This is why blogging is so much fun! I hope you have enjoyed this too....thanks again for all of your wonderful comments, thoughts, and support. Keep me in mind and stop back soon to either this blog or to my new blog, Bella Rosa Antiques, as more details unfold about the new website. (I'll probably have another giveway to announce the unveiling!)

Have a very BELLA day!

Friday, January 25, 2008

Tagged ...I'm It! ~ Why It's Great to Be Me

The lovely, talented and extremely nice Betty of Country Charm, chose me to give reasons why it is great to be ME other words, to count my blessings. Sometimes we don't stop to count our blessings so I guess I should thank Betty for giving me this challenge...and helping me to see that my blessings are MANY. This is known in blogland (is there such a place?) as a MEME and it was originated by a gal named Jan, of Bold and Free. (I do apologize, Jan, as I do not have a link to your blog!)

I am blessed because:

1. I am alive, healthy, and was given life on this earth by a wonderful creator, God! I will also have eternal life...of which I am so thankful. Ask me more if you'd like, about this...

2. I have a wonderful and loving husband. (Commonly known as DH! LOL) You won't see many pictures of my DH because he has become very camera shy all of a sudden!

3. His three children have become part of my family too... and they are really, really great!

4. My parents were awesome (still are) and my Sister and I wouldn't be who we are today without them. No matter where my family is I know they are close to my heart at all times.

5. I had great ancestors who fought hard for this country during Revolutionary times and also for the Civil War. I am in awe of their courage and determination.

6. I have a house with a roof, four walls and hey, even a garage!

7. I know that no matter what happens, God will take care of me. With or without money to buy things... I will not go hungry. (During and right after college though, I was pretty close!)

8. I was given wonderful of them is dancing. There are others but I can't remember them all. LOL!

9. I have wonderful friends and now some new ones I've met though this blog! I am very pleasantly surprised. I just thought I was going to start "journaling" online.

10. I live in the United States and the freedoms we have make life here like a canvas. The colors we choose to paint it with are up to us.

I hope you enjoyed (?) my list! I do believe I am now supposed to "tag" someone else to create her own list. Since I am very new to blogging I hope these gals do not mind I've selected them.

I choose:

* Carol of Sassafras and Lulu because she has a wonderful way of reaching out to others and an appreciation of life.

* MJ of MJ's Sputterings because of her excellent writing skills, great wisdom, and I love the name of her blog!

* Michelle of I'm A Little Teapot because of her upbeat blog which cheers so many!

Have a great afternoon...I'm going to go in search of something in my house for Show and Tell Friday. Can't promise I will find something, but you just never know!

I also would like to send a special "tag out" to my good friend of "Bobby's Escapades"...but I'm not sure she will do this as her blog is supposed to be about her son's adventures. Maybe she will start one for Bobby's Mommy! :0)

Feel free to leave me a note about counting your blessings if you'd like, too!

Banner Prize!

Omigosh! I just found out I won a giveaway! Deena, of Can I Be Pretty In Pink had a Valentine's Day banner to give...created by the lovely and talented Mary of Isabella's Closet. And yours truly won this one:

I get to choose whatever I would like on there! Can't wait! Thanks so much, Deena.

Also today I've been tagged by Betty of
Country Charm to list why it is great to be me (or why I'm blessed.) I'll be back later today with my list...thanks, Betty! Always great to be thankful and remember the positives about our lives.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Celebration of Life! & Not So Thrifty

How girlfriend (we became instant friends while we worked at a TV station together...we were both from the same state) called me today from her hospital room. She was going to have her baby today! CONGRATULATONS! His name is Zane. So today I would like to just celebrate life...we do not get a chance to do that very often and I'm so happy for her. This is her second child and now she has two boys.

Also today, I decided to check out our local thrift store. Now is it just around here or are prices pretty high anymore? (Ok, now I feel terrible, the money goes to charity!)

Well, the bottom line is... I really didn't find anything too great. Another apothecary jar though! This time I'm going to find something different to put inside. Any ideas?

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Vintage Finds

This weekend a friend and I ventured out to a local auction in popular Central Pennsylvania. The place was PACKED which can make it hard to find and even more difficult to bid on great items. For the past several years it has been tough finding auctions that aren't crowded. This must be a hot spot for finding antiques. But, I was very happy with some of my treasures:

Vintage PARIS framed print of an area near the Boulevard Montmartre...

Unique lid on apothecary jar with pretty sea shells...

Pretty pink lustre ROSES cake plate...ooh la la!

I also found a pretty swing arm photo frame, vintage books, tole (with roses!) magazine rack as seen in my first picture above, and a vintage set of antlers to decorate with a cabin/cottage feel, and more!
Auctions are a lot of fun and the anticipation of what I might find is what gets me there!
Next stop...the local thrifty hangout...maybe I'll see you there!
Oh by the way, if you are interested in any of may find them and more in my vintage shop.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

A Very Bella Giveaway ~ 1 Week Left

There is just one week left to enter "A Very BELLA Giveaway." All you have to do is leave a comment on my blog from now until January 27th at midnight! If selected, you will win this "BELLA" glitter word garland. If you don't win...or if you just don't think you need to hang a "BELLA" in your house, there are other words you can still check out by going to my online store "In the Cupboard" . There are a couple of them left. They probably won't be available again until the holiday season next year.

I thought these were fun for Valentine's Day decorations... and I've had a lot of fun with the giveaway! I've been blogging since August which was an entirely new and amazingly fun adventure for me, but I've been just blown away by how much I've gotten into seeing creative sides of all of the gals I've met online! So, the giveaway has just been another bonus on top of everything else.

Can't wait to see who wins! I'll have my DH draw the winning name out of one of my vintage hats on Monday, January 28th.

Friday, January 18, 2008

LuRay Pastels ~ For My First Show & Tell Friday!

While checking out Betty's blog "Country Charm", I found this cool "Show and Tell"event going on ....seems as though it goes on every Friday! Where have I been? Anyway, it looked like a lot of fun, and gee, what a great idea Kelli had! Why didn't I think of it? :-) Below, you will find what I am showing and telling about. It is my biggest collection!

This is one of our kitchen cupboards. Never mind the fact they used to be dark brown, that's another story for another blog. Actually, back on my New Year's Post I showed the before and after pics of the kitchen redo. ANYWAY, this is my LuRay dinnerware collection. Click here to see what duplicate pieces I am selling in my online store.) Some people have heard of it and some have not. A lot more people had NOT heard of it until Martha (needs no last name) put it on her show or her magazine or maybe even MENTIONED it ....and WOW it was hard to find. But then again, I was living in the midwest at the time, and I really had a hard time finding it. This was before ebay.

Let's start with the beginning. During college, I had gone to a Salvation Army in my hometown. I was in college and of course, didn't have a lot of money. I had originally gone there to look for a man's suit jacket to wear with a white T Shirt and jeans. Does anyone else remember doing this back in the late 80's?????? (Please say yes!) So, I somehow ended up in the housewares area and at the end of an aisle, a stack of all pink dishes caught my eye. Yes, even then, I had a love for pink. I even had a love for pink in high school. Pink pants, pink shoes, pink purse, well, you get the idea. I must have looked like Molly Ringwald meets the cotton candy machine.

So, I did not buy these pink dishes, but found that I could not stop thinking about them. I was daydreaming about how cool it would be when I had my OWN APARTMENT someday cool it would be to have all pink dishes. Well, this drove me crazy and I ended up at the library looking up vintage dishes in books until I found a book that listed a set of all pastel dishes called LuRay. "This must be it!," I thought.

Well whether it was or it wasn't the same set....I didn't forget. It wasn't until 1992 when I did have my own apartment, along the shore in NJ....when I found my very first piece. It was the small "Surf Green" 36's bowl....just the perfect size for oatmeal, or for mixing small sauces, etc. I was soooooooo excited! The hunt was on!

Now it is 16 years (wow, has it really been that long?) later and I am still collecting. I am now onto the more difficult pieces to find....which makes it even more fun. Sure, I could stalk them on ebay, but what fun is that? I used to go to Atlantique City every year and bring my entire tax return and hunt the stuff down, dealer by dealer. (By the way, Atlantique City is soooooo neat! You've got to go at least one time if you love antiques! What a learning experience!) But now, I am patient and get a piece here and a piece there. I do buy on ebay sometimes... but it has to be a really rare piece. Otherwise, I like to FIND it myself. Oh the thrill!

Here's a brief history on these dishes. They were made by Taylor, Smith & Taylor in West Virginia. They were named by a salesman for the company who had just returned from a trip to Luray Caverns in Virginia. He thought the pretty pastel colors sparkled like the sparkling colors in the caverns. This was in the late 1930's. They stopped making them around 1954 or 1955, I believe. These dishes were supposed to be the alternative to the very popular and very colorful FIESTA Ware.

There was a brief moment of insanity where I almost started selling off my collection. I did not have any place to display them. Then when my DH and I bought our house a year and a half ago, we decided to update our 1970's kitchen. It was then I realized it was now or never. So, we replaced the cabinet doors (custom made OAK cabinets....wonderfully made, so this was painful for my DH) with a vintage style glass, and painted the cabinets a much lighter color. We added some inside lighting and well, now I can't imagine my kitchen with anything else! My DH is the sweetest to even want to do this...and I am grateful. And so glad I kept the collection.

So, on my first "Show and Tell Friday" here it is. My favorite collection ... and the how and why. I also have another post on my Bella Rosa blog about LuRay if you click here, you will find it.

Do you have something you love to hunt for? Tell me by leaving a comment here!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Snow Today, Gone Tomorrow?

We are having a pretty snowfall today in Pennsylvania! And since I've taken the picture, a lot more snow has fallen... and it is STILL snowing. Pretty, but, it is not a sign of spring! I know, it is way tooooooooo early.

Scroll down....











Dream sequence......cue harp music! ....







A girl can dream, can't she?

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Beautiful Things Arrived...

Sweet and wonderful things arrived today! From Sweet Remembrance . And I think I know why the name fits...look at these little cuties Priscilla sent along! A Valentine, a little bag FILLED with neat things...vintage buttons, my initial J, a gifty tag, and more! So fun!

And this looked good enough to eat, like cotton candy!

Even her peanuts are pink!

And inside, my two beautiful vintage Christmas ornaments. LOVE THEM! Can't wait to hang them on the tree from Katie's Rose Cottage .

While I was busy having fun and opening things, two of our cats (Minnie and Love) were licking their chops watching the birds outside.

While the other one was too busy having fun with the ribbons and tissue paper!

Sissy Miss...with a guilty look

Then after fun time was over I had to get back to work. Here are some of the neat things I found to list today in my auctions:

Chippy Cupboard door w/ Etched Glass (SOLD)

3D Framed Porcelain Roses (SOLD)

Fun country kitchen items...wire chicken and vintage wooden clothespins. Funny thing is, I can't stand hanging clothes outside. But I LOVE old wooden clothespins. Quirky!

Click to see what else I listed under In the Cupboard Antiques . Soon I think the name will be changing... don't forget to sign up for my "A VERY BELLA Giveaway!" Click here to enter! I'll pick from all entries on Monday, January 28th.

Monday, January 14, 2008

A Very BELLA Giveaway!

Today I am starting my first and very own giveaway! I wanted to thank all the molta bella (very beautiful) gals who left me some very bella feedback on my new website name. Many of you really liked "Bella Rosa Antiques!" If you've missed my posting on how this all on "What's in a Name?" . Bella Rosa Antiques is the name I am leaning towards. Thank you so much for all the kind words and ideas! I really enjoyed reading your comments.

So, if you'd like to win this silver "Bella" glitter word garland, strung on very pretty light pink organdy ribbon, all you have to do is leave a comment on my blog for the next 2 weeks...until Sunday evening at midnight, January 27th. If you put the Bella Giveaway banner on your blog and mention it in your comment, you will receive two entries! I will pick a winner Monday morning, January 28th. Just make sure I can contact you. (This is so much fun already!) If you're also interested in seeing other word garlands I have
here. If you do not see one you like there, I also have "GIVE", "WISH", "PEACE", and "JOY."

Have a very bella day!

Friday, January 11, 2008

Tea Time with the Girls

When I think of Valentine's Day I've come to think of it as time for tea. This is probably because the antique mall where we have our booth has their annual "Tea." It's a great time for socializing with all of our dealer friends and we get to sample all of the delectable treats we've brought in. Plus, we all try and out do each other with our sale tags. We use what else.....hearts! I'll have to start making mine soon. I usually wait until the day of and run around looking for pink fancy papers.

So here are a few things I will be listing this week online, inspired by our Valetine's Day tea....which is coming up soon here, in Hershey, PA.

This hat is so girlie! I love it. And I couldn't resist pairing it with the cutie distressed pink n roses chair for the picture.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

What's In a Name?

Well, now that I have won a web design from Retro Boutiques
...I have to decide on a name for my new website. I was all set to use my current "In the Cupboard Antiques. " Does that sound fun? Feminine? Does it represent who I am? One plus, it would be easy to use the Cupboard theme and be creative.

Then I was typing on the computer when the name "Bella Rosa" popped into my head. It is something I remembered from a trip to Italy I had taken. My girlfriend and I were waiting for our tour to leave when I entered a garden of roses. There was a sweet, elderly gardener there trimming the bushes. He saw me and just started exclaiming "Bella Rosa Rosa Rosa!" Seems as though redheads get a lot of attention over there. Anyway...he handed me some roses and I was so charmed! How sweet was that? I don't think that has ever happened to me here in the US. I have never forgotten this neat moment and it really made my day. Still makes me smile whenever I think about it.
So I had to ask myself: Do beautiful roses and antiques go together? Yes...lots of shabby chic porcelains, etc., but I tend to sell all kinds of different things. This is getting tricky!
What do you think? I don't have much time on this and would love some input. I asked my DH and he said "whatever you would like, honey!" Sweet, but not helping me here. Maybe I should ask for a Mercedes instead!
Drop me a comment or two if you think of something...

Monday, January 7, 2008

Valentine Give Away!

Deena of "Can I Be Pretty in Pink?" is having a Valentine give away on her blog. All you have to do is leave a love story in her comments section and you'll be entered. Here is a link to her blog:

Someone is going to have to teach me how to make the link and the graphic work together...but for now I am using the hyperlink method! The banner was made by Mary of Isabella's Closet. Some talented gals here on the internet...

I just left my love story and read all of the others. Lots of love out there! Very nice reminder when sometimes we hear too often about the negative things going on in the news. Thanks for the neat contest, Deena.

Treasures Arrived Today!

What a sweet surprise ... the lovely vintage items I ordered from Amy on her website arrived! I am especially thrilled with the lighthouse DH and I always make sure to visit one each time we drive up to Maine. What a fast shipper...too!

She has 8 vintage "rooms" full of other pretty things and antiques! Click on her link to see what else she has available:

In the meantime I'm going to find a place for my latest vintage pictures ...they look so good together I might make a new arrangement.

Send me some of your ideas or photos you have of your "vignettes"...I'd love to see them!

Friday, January 4, 2008

Shop Vintage - In the Cupboard!

If you like vintage treasures as much as I might want to see what I have listed this week. It is so much fun hand picking items and it is even more fun when a customer finds a piece she loves and is thrilled with. Take a might find your own vintage treasure to keep:

Vintage Buttons, and an Art Deco Evening Bag (SOLD)

Pink Shabby Doll Furniture (SOLD) and Vintage Shabby Containers (SOLD)

See what else is "In the Cupboard!"

Thursday, January 3, 2008

A not so Crowning moment

Last night I was working on some crafty projects...painting & decorating furniture...when I decided I needed to turn on the TV. Since I really don't enjoy watching Deal or No Deal on NBC, I flipped over to the CW network which I find entertaining. Usually. Last night was the first time I'd checked out CROWNED. The Mother of All Pageants. You've got to be kidding me. Now, don't get mad at me or think I am being too critical, but this show is terrible! The awful lighting they use on the "stage"..... this show should be axed. On top of it they use these horrible sound affects when the contestants have to "cut" the sash of the latest "losers" to leave the show. I'm not sure if it is every show but last night's slasher sasher ceremony was particularly full of some serious bawling. P-l-e-a-s-e....this is pathetic!

And I'm not even against pageantry. Or reality shows. I am a FORMER pageant contestant myself. Yes, I got up in front of EVERYONE, walked around in foofy clothes and blurbed my career plans into a microphone. It all started in high school when I entered the local Teen pageant. A classmate of mine had said "I'm going to enter, why don't you enter with me?" And then I won. I still have my pink and black sash and rhinestone crown.
From there I entered other pageants, mostly in the Miss America Pageant program to earn scholarship money for college. I always placed in the top group...which was fine. I didn't HAVE to have the crown. And I did use the money to pay for tuition. Boys played sports for college money, I entered pageants.

It was also a chance for me to be able to put to use all of those dance lessons my parents paid for. Now I am so thankful they did that for me. All the times my Mother drove me to class! And all those recitals and costumes. But I wouldn't be who I am today without my dancing. I LOVE TO DANCE. I was meant to dance. It's in my soul. I can't tell you how much fun it was dancing up on stage, by myself, to fun broadway and Liza Minelli songs. Probably why my blog reads "and all that jazz" in the title.

I guess what bothered me about the show was how tacky they make it appear. This wasn't what I had experienced at all. Pageants were challenging, but they were also fun and great learning experiences. Certainly helped me learn how to interview which came in handy for jobs later on in life.

Whatever your opinion is of pageants....some people say they degrade women....and others think they provide great opportunities. Either way, CROWNED is none of them. It's just SAD!

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Flat Stanley Goes to the Farm

Have you ever met Flat Stanley? This is my second time helping this little guy out. The first was when I was working for the local tv station, and he made his way from the news anchor desk to the control room, to the edit rooms of our Promtion and Marketing department. Now, I offered to take Mr. Stanley up to the family farm for a school in Millville, NJ. He saw what life is like on a Pennsylvania farm. He had a lot of fun, but it sure was COLD! He can't wait to go back and tell all the kids about what he learned here.

This was his view from the van as we sped along the highway...pretty red barns!

Mmmm...homemade apple pies. My Father-in-law made these!

Stanley checks out the corn field. Every time I see these pictures I just can't help myself and hear "Oh Nooooooooooooo!" Anyone remember Mr. Bill?

A bit snowy but Mr. Stanley met the cows and was so excited to hear that the two matching cows were actually TWINS!

If you'd like to host Flat Stanley, leave me a note on my blog. They would love for you to show him around so the first graders at the School could see more of the US and actually, more of the world! He travels easily and arrives by mail.

Well, we had a great visit...and spent our third Christmas celebration with my In-laws (and of course, with our jolly Mr.Stanley. ) One more to go! Although I may have to roll there after "taste testing" all of the treats. Definitely putting the new year diet on hold...