Tuesday, July 31, 2012

My Fly Boy!

My son was in his Senior year of high school when 9/11 happened.  By January he had made the decision to join the Air Force.  I cried a lot!   If you read my very first post you'll see how my craft room came to be in his old bedroom.  I missed him so much in his first four years of Active Duty when he was stationed in Tacoma, Washington; but even that was easier than his current assignment:  Pearl Harbor, Hawaii!  Washington is a two hour time difference, I could call him or I could wait until the time was right, Hawaii has a five hour time difference and a trip 'home' is a lot more expensive than flying from Seattle.  
Off we go into the wild blue yonder
Flying high into the sky!  

I picked up this 1940s sheet music for the Army Air Corps theme song and put Mr. Wonderful to work framing it up for me. A thrift store frame and then my creative husband layered vintage sheet music and printed up pictures of our son's ribbons (from his Air Force awards on his uniform) and used them as a banner across the top!
My Fly Boy, ( I mean Technical Sgt.) will be home on leave enjoying the best of the heat and humidity we can offer him for the next 10 days.  We will also celebrate his 29th birthday!  I'm so happy to have a reason to cook the foods he loves and talk to my son 'live and in color". 

 There's no place like home!

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Merry Mary!

As a saver of all things cute, I was compelled to keep the pictures on every Mary Engelbreit calendar I ever had,  This included three years of the large wall size, one desk calendar and two page-a day tear off calendars!  Trimming out pictures and pieces of the larger graphic that Mary drew, I cut and glue stick the pieces according to what will fit on my 5 x 5 square.  Sandwich method of paper craft creating learned from Elizabeth: cardboard in the middle, scrapbook paper on each side.

The pictures I used for these tags remind me of my 'Imaginary Friends' in blogville.  Can you guess who they are?
For the tag on the left I used a vintage Christmas card for the view out the window; I cut pieces of brown corrugated cardboard for window frames. Mary's picture of the girl is glued flat and I used foamie pieces cut in 1/8" strips to raise up the books, pens and yarn basket..  The pet loving little boy was fun to cut and glue on 'grass' scrapbook paper.  I used portions of Mary's border to add above the boy's head and then cut the framed pooch out to raise up with pop dots on the border.
Minnesota has 11,000 lakes and within two blocks of my house there are two lakes; the heat this summer brings plenty of swimmers and waders!  The girls on the right are having a tea party.  My Little Grama poured coffee and 90% milk in my cup when I was four years old.  My version of a tea party with my  grandkids involves bone china doll dishes and a vintage one cup aluminum teapot.  Pretend sugar and cream are poured generously into the cups of  (real) water as we drink our tea kneeling around the ottoman! 

I embellished some 1" clothespins I found at the Dollar Store; I'll be hanging these darling little tags on yet another measuring tape line and thinking of my friends as I await the arrival of your Friendship pendants!  

Friday, July 27, 2012

A Glimpse

Do you love to peek into the background in other blogger's photos?  I love to catch a glimpse of their homes to see how that too, reflects their personality.  My love of vintage tatted doilies requires me to "SAVE" them from life in the thrift store.  Some Grama spent hours making that beautiful piece and they end up in a thrift store!  I can't make them but I am happy to take them home with me.

I live in the Upper Midwest, my home is in Minnesota.  My beloved Mr. Wonderful was born and raised in Iowa, I have transplanted him to a better life!   We went to the Wisconsin Dells on family vacations when I was a child, fond memories of riding 'the ducks' from WWII on Lake Delton.  Mr. Wonderful and I went to The Dells on our honeymoon in August of '78 and for our 30th anniversary a few years ago.  A slightly better budget this time but very few of the same sites; it's water park heaven now.

Knowing my love for vintage linens and red, white and blue, an appliqued dish towel was part of a wonderful package from my friend Chris at Perfectly Printed She made me an adorable little house that to me looks like a Post Office, she garnished it with stamps!  'See the other goodies she include?  Tell me, does any friend in my real life  know I like this kind of stuff?  Um, probably not.
Do you see the Little Golden Book to add to my collection?  Mr. Wonderful works for the Post Office and she knows my need for those little silver bound story books!  'Love it all Miss "Chris Craft"!
I found the dish drainer at the flea market,  Miss Kim at Musings from Kim K sent me my own dolly dishes to put in it!  I have wanted red metal dishes and here she was: Santa Claus!  The journal sitting in the background is a 'slam book' of sorts where I keep track of the trades and swaps I've been in.  I don't want to forget the wonderful gifts, fabulous ephemera and thoughtful tuck-ins that you have sent me.  I keep pieces of the wrapping paper, pretty tape or graphics that you add in the book!  The beautiful cover art was a card made by my pal Stephanie Gilded Junque; I saved the card and now it covers my journal. 
Remember the spring flea market with the giant rain storm?   I had this little chicken feeder I found for $3.00; here is the project that needed some tweaking.  My beloved built me a 'faux window' when I couldn't find one small enough for our little hip-roofed shed, the chicken feeder now holds Impatiens and Coleus. There's a glimpse of my decorating in the 'Early Attic' style I love.  

Friday, July 20, 2012

Adoption is Amazing

First of all, let me say that this is a shameless info-mercial regarding my love for Cary Grant.  This is the cutest move starring these two Hollywood idols ever!  Boy meets girl.  Boy marries girl.  They adopt a baby.  Tear jerker drama in the middle of the movie. They live happily ever after.  I love Cary Grant!  Anyone who calls someone 'Dahling' and is that good looking can come into my living room any day!  There are so many great lines in this movie!  At one point, the inexperienced new mother is trying to stop the baby from crying in the night.  Father looks on and says, "Do something!  Can't you see the baby's suffering?!"  We love that line! 

We went to the State Fair about two weeks after returning from our honeymoon in 1978.  At the fair we walked through the education building where we saw an Adoptive Parents' organization display of small black and white wallet sized photos of babies in Korea waiting for adoption.  No long talks, no infertility, no reason other than love for children and the belief that we could parent any child, by birth or any other method.  We looked at each other and said, "Do you want to adopt a baby from Korea?"  Yes, we did.  

In 1981 we applied to adopt a baby girl, we felt there might be less prejudice toward a girl.  We wrote 30 pages of essay questions on why we could parent a child that didn't look like us, how our family felt about the idea, what we would do to help the child understand her heritage and lots more that I don't remember any more.  
We waited and in August we got a phone call, the agency had a set  of  little black and white pictures of the baby girl that would be ours!  Daddy-to-be drove to the adoption agency to pick up the information then sped to the place I was working and showed me the three pictures that I would carry (and stare at) for the next two months while we waited for the baby whose name was Hyung Lan (which means Scented Orchid) to get a visa and a ticket to fly to the U.S.A. and become our beloved daughter, Susan Lynn.
We waited, impatiently,  I worked two jobs and Mr. Wonderful worked two jobs to pay for the adoption expenses.  I embroidered a cross stitch Bambi quilt, we bought a crib and a playpen, a swing and a high chair.  And finally, the adoption agency called to say her flight was scheduled!

My parents, my sister and some other friends came to the airport to meet the Northwest Airlines 747 stork.  The adoption flight aide met us and went into the aircraft to bring the baby out to us.  When he spoke to us he said, all the passengers will disembark and THEN I'll go in and get her.  There are over 400 passengers on a 747 so imagine my shock when he reappeared at the end of the jetway just a few minutes later holding a pink bundle!  I screamed, "That's my baby!" The crowd parted like the Moses and the Red Sea and I ran up and grabbed that baby girl right out of his arms!  Home at last, the baby I had prayed for, dreamed of and imagined for four years!  The waiting was over.
It's not her birthday, it's not her Family Day (arrival anniversary), it's not Mother's Day; it's just a love story that I thought I would tell you today.  My beloved black haired, almond-eyed beauty is now a Mommy herself, a teacher, a wife, a wonderful young woman and more than I ever dreamed of in a daughter born not under my heart, but in it.

The Chosen Baby, by Valentina Wasson is a sweet little storybook written in 1939 about adoption; I altered it with pictures by Becky Kelly, a wonderfully talented artist who always includes Asian girls in her group scenes because one of her childhood pals was a beautiful almond eyed, little black haired girl!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Does a pile of ironing make you smile?

Sometimes, when my ironing looks like this, I grin ear to ear.  Doilies that needed freshening up, a vintage tablecloth that I love to use with my turquoise Fiesta dishes from Great Grama are on the docket.  On the far end of the ironing board the brown and white gingham check is a 1950's house dress that I wear when driving my '57 Chevy.  
My vintage tablecloths require sprinkling before even thinking about ironing them.  A friend told me that her mother used to sprinkle the clothes then roll them up and put them in a bag in the refrigerator before ironing them.  Knowing me, I'd put the clothes in the frig and forget them there!

When I was a little girl I had a pink ironing board, complete with a silver insulated cover and a little iron that plugged in and heated up!  I remember my Mom letting me wash all the doll clothes and then hang them on the line with my little wicker basket and clothes pins.  Next would come ironing.  I thought it was fun then...

Now, let's see...would I rather iron or eat cookies?  
Add caption
Or go for a ride?  Gotta change clothes, I choose ride!  I finished the ironing, not to worry!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Pin Up Girls!

It's always fun to take a step back in time.  Whenever I get out the stack of 1945 Saturday Evening Post magazines to peruse, I know I'm in for a little time travel fun.

Paper craft with these great old advertisements gives them a new life and always makes me smile; I figure that's much better than sitting in a box in the basement where they had spent the last 34 years.

The graphics themselves are so much fun, I love the WW II era patriotism.  Lots of pictures of men in uniforms and women...wearing tap pants and bouncing out of bed.  This ad was OVALTINE!  She is guaranteed to 'wake up perky' if she drinks a cup of regular or chocolate flavor before retiring to bed.

Here they are selling zippers, yes, you heard me right.  A zipper for your corset!  Every ad had a sub-message about buying war bonds, or if Americans couldn't buy the products due to war production how it would be available to them later.  And, so Americans waited, and didn't have sugar or gasoline, and they didn't mind!  Can you imagine that today?
I listen to Glenn Miller and his orchestra while crafting so of course I had to include the lyrics to the song, Kalamazoo!  The 'Missus' up on the step ladder is sewing a rip in her window shade.  The ad read that Scotch Brand cellulose tape was now doing 'wartime work' making bomb covers.  Mending her shade will be so much easier with Scotch tape AFTER THE WAR IS OVER.  Until then, Scotch tape is protecting our boys!
Oh look!  She got a letter!  He's coming home!  She's at her dressing table getting ready.  I love the old movies where every woman had a dressing table where she primped!  
Home at last, and she has a bright white smile because she brushed her teeth with Pepsodent right before he got off the bus!  The underlying story, did you notice?  The prettiest pin up girl is the one who wrote to him and prayed for him,  waiting for him... 

Monday, July 9, 2012

Early Attic Style

Before it caught on as 'junk market' or 'flea market' style, I have been decorating with old stuff.  My Grama's treasures (and some other peoples' Grama's treasures) have been part of the charm of home.  This set of flags is actually a hood ornament that went over the radiator cover of a Model T Ford.  In the stack in my formal living room:  Scrabble, Password, Yahtzee, and wooden Dominoes.  Who needs the Wii?

The entry table in the foyer was set up to inspire the gardening as I head in and out to the watering can and my evening ritual of Miracle Grow and dead-heading the patriotic posies in my Victory Gardens.  The numbered tacks in the center are to mark and coordinate screens and windows from the days when they had to be installed every summer and removed every autumn.

Don't ask me why I think whisk brooms are so adorable.  My Dad used to sweep out the carpets in the car when he washed it every Saturday night.  This whisk is well used, it should be about 3" longer!

A little peek into my 'playroom' aka crafting place.  They once were somebody's jam jars but now they are the perfect spot for ribbons and garnishes for paper craft projects.  The slot for the spoon easily dispenses ribbon and rick rack!  I love the charm of useful items that find a new life far from the kitchen.

Speaking of paper craft, I have recovered from my week of 10.5 hour days spent in the Mini MBA program and settled down with some cute paper, ran through three glue sticks and have produced my Friendship Garland contribution to Elizabeth's Creative Breathing exchange.  As soon as I can clear away the scissors, scraps, and mess I've made while creating the tags I'll show you what I came up with to illustrate the fact that
Tammy's in Love!