Friday, August 31, 2012

For the Dogs...

Last year when we visited our farmer friend's farm,
we really wanted to take the old dog house home.
It was so cute, such a neat vintage teal green.
He said we could have it, but it was so honkin' heavy
it was not to be budged.
So Dan built one from scratch for Sharkey and Ruby Sue.
They, of course, want no part of it,
and have graffiti paw prints of rejection all over it.
You try to get them to come by it, and they jump on it.
I have to throw toys in front of it to even get them in the photo
of his dog house.
 They so don't care that he built it and painted it French blue just for them.
I can just picture them saying, "Really, Dad?  Really?"

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Saturday Night Special at Funky Junk

Sunday Best at My 1929 Charmer

Monday, August 27, 2012

Simply Summer's End

It's still August but
the pie pumpkins are already ripe.
We had to bring them indoors or they would rot as we've had a bit of
a delayed rainy spell these last few days.
This little display is ontop of my Betty...
...we couldn't wait and already decked her out for fall.
We'll sharing more of her fun stuff on another day!
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Sunday, August 26, 2012

Rejoice and Be Glad!

Today is the day the Lord has made...
I will rejoice and be glad in it.

Even when things aren't going my way,
I need to try to be more patient with the process of life.
"I am the real vine, and my Father is the gardener.  He breaks off every branch
in me that does not bear fruit, and he prunes every branch that does bear fruit,
so that it will be clean and bear more fruit."
John 15:1-2
And sometimes things
 (and others)
just get in the way and I need to continue to just work around it
and not let it eat me to no end and compromise the good days ahead.
So over and onward.
(I know it doesn't happen in one day.
But I will move on to the best of my ability, for my own good).
This past spring I thought my grapes were doomed for sure.
Half of all my buds had been compromised by a garden pest.
A little diligence paid off.
Some careful attention in gardening and fruit spray
has resulted in a wonderful yield by summer's end,
which I honestly didn't think possible.
Always make sure your last application
is well before your harvest
to assist in safe handling.
We were actually able to pull off two large rubber tubs full of fruit, from just two vines.
And so, in reflection of my own post,
I have a lesson to follow.
Good things will come to those who wait.
"I am the vine, and you are the branches.  Whoever remains in me,
and I in him, will bear much fruit:
for you can do nothing without me."
John 15:5
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Friday, August 24, 2012

Yeah, that Land Use Meeting...

This is an extremely long and informative post for those
who have been following our chicken saga.
I had said I would be going to the next county land use meeting
on the second Tuesday of August
to formally request that the committee leaders pursue lowering the cost of the chicken permit fee
and reclassify it as a recreational fee instead of a special use permit
 (which costs approximately $1000).
Throughout this whole process,
even when I was totally disgusted at the neighbor and the county over this issue,
I was still pretty confident we could get our hens back by October.
I was not afraid at all.
We have done nothing wrong.
I was absolutely certain St. Joseph, patron saint of the home, had my back on this one;
he would watch over what was going on and help us through it.
Little did I know...
The meeting would not go well.
Not only do they refuse to lower the fee,
some county workers immediately recommended upping it.
Their argument is that our unincoporated county's 'special use fee'
is progressive compared to other counties,
who charge twice as much.
The caveat is that nearby municipalities charge nothing at all
I guess having chickens is on par with strip clubs because if I was opening one
of those, I would have to go through the same process of mailings,

a sign in my yard, and two court hearings.
One worker in particular, stated that he would demand
(after chicken fees were paid in full and permitted),
a coop with a minimum $50 building permit fee - depending on the type of structure-
and that it would have to have an approved 90 mph wind-resistant roof.
please tell me,
how many of you have a 90 mph wind-resistant roof
on your own residence

(I do not.  Mine is like 60.  Not the top of the line,

but good enough for us right now).
That's the wind power that causes severe damage when trees come down.
Only Tom Weigel, the Land Use Chairman, was of any help-
with his farming experience at hand, he asked them to all lower it to fifty bucks.
The rest of the hungry committee pounced on him and railroaded it,
and, since Tom seems to be a soft-spoken guy,
I can read the writing on the wall.  They WON'T lower it.
It just isn't going to happen for us.
If even one person comes to protest at a hearing,
we could be denied and not get our money refunded.
I did get to speak, though they didn't want me to.
I reminded them that they (the county) got the federal grant for $100,000
to pass new zoning regulations (that included many updates like wind turbines,

but also included chickens)
to advertise Will County as sustainable to developers, but now they won't let
working families in semi-rural areas partake in it without bending over for their 'new rules.'
Instead, they got a $100,000 grant so they can make money hand over fist
as people come to apply for a chicken permit (or hopefully they will 'just go away'
for them because of all the trouble it involves).
One county official had the nerve to tell us that he
{spends too much time dealing with chicken matters on the phone and doing research.}
It was great to remind him in person that he is a government worker
who works for the people
on their dollar
and that he shouldn't be complaining to county residents that he's "spending too much time" on
issues we care about, especially since many residents are unemployed and would
be happy to have a posh job at the county.
They all smirked and wrote notes for each other as I spoke,
because that's what your government workers do, folks.

I feel like I'm in Communist Poland and they're trying to make me pay

for a high tech roof with architectural shingles

on a coop for a chicken, and wait I have to let them come and count our 4 hens.


But THANK YOU TOM WEIGEL, for reminding them they are
on salary, not hourly commission,
and that they get paid no matter what work they get done (or not).

And I don't mind saying these things because it's all public record

and videotaped for youtube anyway.
Well, I for one will be at the election box in November to make some checks
on who is running for re-election to county board.
And I cannot express to you
how sick I have been over all of this...
I know people have far worse problems in life

so I'm trying not to be so sad because then I make myself feel guilty that I have no right

to be unhappy or feel beaten by injustice.

I have a hard time contolling my bitterness over it and sometimes that's the worst part.
We are very lucky to all be healthy.
No matter what happens we will be okay, I just have to be willing to hand this over.

I have to trust in God that this is all going to work out in the end...somehow.
But it has hurt us very deeply...
to the point where hard lines are drawn in the sand.

SO, we have made the decision
to save the money we would use to fight this and
instead use it as a down payment on another home, zoned agricultural.
Chickens will stay at Grandma's, for now (or indefinitely).
And enter St. Joseph again, although not as I originally intended
(now for help and guidance in moving).
We have already completed a market appraisal.
It may take a year.  Or five.
We have the upcoming winter to begin to prepare for what may come.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Dad's Pick

I wrestled with dappled sunlight on this shoot.  Oh well, it is what it is.

Fresh paint does wonders...
and, although the original finish on this piece was not that bad...

...we know as girls that makeovers are so much fun.  And work.  And sweat.

But not so many tears on this one; it really wasn't damaged.

My dad found this piece for me for $20 at a garage sale (GO DAD!)

We keep stressing THE DISCERNING EYE.

Well, this pick was obviously his hall of fame-r.

Here are the afters...

Some sanding, some Ben Moore in white chocolate, some distressing,

some wipe on polycrylic,

some new crystal knobs where there were none,

...makes for a total refreshing transformation

that any girl would love.

Wouldn't this be your *dream* dresser if you were a little girl?

Ok, big girls can get in on the fun, too.

You know you would put this in your bedroom

( or dining room or foyer or office for your typewriter that sits on display and no one uses...

do you have that?  I have that.)

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and last but NEVER least,

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Thank You, Debra!

I'm so very honored to be this week's featured blog at

for Vintage Inspiration Friday.

Common Ground

Thank you, Debra! 

You made a small blog puff up her chest and shake out her tailfeathers today!

Please stop by Common Ground

and visit her Vintage Inspiration Friday linky party

where all who love *vintage* are sure to be inspired tonight!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Come Holy Spirit

Today I'm inspired by the Holy Spirit.

I'm at least telling myself that because I need to be. 

I went to a special mass last night in honor of the Holy Spirit

and I can say I did walk away differently than when I came.

So many things are out of our control in our lives.

I know I need to be better at giving it all back.

But it is not easy for me to do at all.

But it is something I should strive to do.

The Holy Spirit is always seen in art as a dove.

It is defined as the love that flows between God the Father and God the Son.

It is often depicted in Renaissance paintings,

but I have never seen it so lovingly portrayed in a sculpture as this one.

This little chalkware Jesus has glass eyes.

But I find the unique thing about it is the age of Christ.

It isn't often you find Him depicted at this age in art.

Usually, He is an Infant, Merciful, or Glorified.

In more contemporary art, a humble man.

But rarely ever a young boy.

I know it must be Jesus

because of the intimacy between the two figures.

Today, they are photographed with garden flowers,

but this sculpture is not an outdoor sculpture.

It remains on my kitchen counter.

It may seem like a strange place to you...

...but I find a multitude of important decisions

are mulled over and pondered at the kitchen sink.

Pile on the dishes.

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Saturday, August 11, 2012

Sacred Images

 A few new recent acquisitions have made their way over into our home.

I *love* antique holy images. 

I feel they remind my kids daily to grow up in their faith.

This antique intaglio print of the Sacred Heart is printed in France

and was just $1.

(My first authentic French treasure here, folks! 

I need to find a frame for this 8"x10" piece.

And, at just one dollar, we see true treasures don't have to be pricey!)


I also had been spying this vintage image of the Mass of the Last Supper

at a junk shop I visit occasionally.  Their prices are usually a little high for what they sell

so you have to watch.

Well, I had been watching thisprint for several weeks and hadn't made a move on it yet.


last week, I walked in on a furniture hunt and saw another woman asking for

this piece to be taken off the wall so she could see it.

The horror.

How dare she look at my future purchase??!! 

Would she  --buy it?

Ten minutes later it went back up on the wall.

So, at that point, I decided it was going home with me.

I was too connected.

$10 on this 12"x16" print.


And finally, another chalkware Sacred Heart of Jesus has entered our home.

The details on Him are extraordinary.

Look at that face.

I don't mind that statue is chipped in several places.

He stands guard, at 18" tall, by our front door.

When this statue arrived at the local antique mart,

Dorothy, the shop keeper, called me up and told me to come down right away to come get it

and that she was holding it for me.

I love it when she does that.

Dorothy knows that when I take something like this with me,

it will be going to a good home.

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Tuesday, August 7, 2012


Today I'm loving my limelights.

They are a garden favorite of mine because they

are so easy to grow and have such tall blooms.

I also love flowers that have a hint of green in them,

and these have just enough mint.

I also finished another cane back chair.

I recovered the seat with a grain sack...

working on a set of four of these for myself,

and the process is slow going because of life.

Currently, I have 3/4 done.

Limelight hydrangeas are perfect for a cottage garden bouquet... armload of these signifies some of the last of

summer's glorious treasures.

-enjoy the day-

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Thursday, August 2, 2012

Dan's Redemption and Big Baby

With the Olympics this week, there is a lot of 'talk'

about 'redemption.'

A few weeks ago, Dan broke a 1930s full moon mirror

we had just found with a vanity.

I was extremely upset about the mirror, to put it bluntly.

Call me a big baby.

I'd wanted one of those mirrors for awhile.

So he went out later that week and found this big baby on the street...

...and totally redeemed himself!

As you can see in the photo, Big Baby needed a LOT of work.

After some new sides were glued on,

some puttying and sanding in critical areas,

some wooden dowels hammered out and glued in to fill in the missing trims, 

priming, painting, distressing, and waxing,

here is Big Baby today...

This vintage white color is becoming a favorite...

White Chocolate, by Ben Moore.

Lots of antique drawers for storage!

The original hardware was scrubbed with some

baking soda, vinegar, hot water, and a brush.

Big Baby's back in town!

No more street walkin' allowed, now she'll party with high class ladies...

Come and see Big Baby at...

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