Posts Tagged ‘Collectables’

Bascal Italy Aluminum Glasses

These poor items collected some dust! They were sitting in a vintage Coca Cola crate in the corner of my dining room. 

1950’s aluminum glasses bring back a lot of memories.  Memories of my childhood, my grandmother’s kitchen.

Grandmother had very few kitchen cabinets.  They were white metal cabinets, with one large shelf that ran above her kitchen sink.  On that shelf was a set of 8 aluminum glasses, all stamped Bascal, Italy, very much like the ones that I have.  Grandmother’s glasses were in perfect condition, mine are a little worn (picked up piece by piece in antique shops). 

I just saw a set of 6 Bascal, Italy aluminum glasses online, $98.00.  Oh boy…I would love to have them! Bright purple, blue, green, silver, red, orange, gold and pink!

My memory takes me back to the front yard where grandmother served homemade lemonade out of a Bascal pitcher.  Oh, how nice those aluminum glasses were to a child on a hot summer day, filled with ice and lemonade.  And to visit on the front porch of the house, or under the trees in the yard.  Of course, we sat in metal lawn chairs.  I think they might have been called fan chairs.  My brother and I would count the train cars as they passed (down hill from the house).  The town was a stop for the trains.  My grandfather retired from Cottonbelt many years ago.  He snuck me on a train once, drove down the tracks about 100 feet.  He said to me, “I am not supposed to be doing this!” Wow, the power under my feet in that engine, and we were only inching along!!

Some of my fondest memories come from grandma’s kitchen.  Here was a lady named Minnie.  Her little body matched that name.  Her perfectly starched house dresses, full aprons, hair pinned up, and tiny wire rimmed glasses all fit to a tee.  And her kitchen was her kitchen! From the pink tiles, to the green formica topped table with chrome legs.  Nothing was fancy, but all was memorable.  And in the oven was her wonderful cheese and macaroni.  One the side cabinet were cakes and pies.  Always something to put the weight on the bones (except her tiny frame).

When grandpa hung around the kitchen too much, grandma would let  him know, “Get out of my kitchen, George!” That was the only time I would hear my grandmother’s voice go into a serious note!

Wonderful memories…and aluminum glasses.  Makes me sad, happy, and blessed to have the memories that I do.

Have a beautiful day!

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As I moved into my adult years I discovered my passion for vintage, primitive and antique furniture and other collectables. Show me something very old and I generally go ga-ga over it. When I bought this house I was looking for an older home with rooms that still held some of their old-time charm. I got it, alright, along with the problems that come with it. This old house = money pit, but I love the house and there could be worse things than a work in progress, correct? I am very happy. And very glad this old house is a part of my life.

Some of you already know my passion for soap began at a young age, around 8 years old, when I bought a “ball” of very primitive soap. I will tell that story again some day. I bought all kinds of soap throughout my childhood. Soap was an inexpensive thing to spend money on, thankfully! In my adult years I still bought different soap here and there, but mainly the Yardley variety that could be purchased at the neighborhood drug store. But then…I found it!

It was about 15 years ago when I was shopping in my favorite small Indiana town. I walked into the herb shop. I was admiring the scent of sage, eucalyptus, and other dried herbs, and I saw it. I saw the vintage butcher block table (very similar to the one pictured above) with handcrafted soap stacked on top. And for all of those years (since my high school days) I had no idea what the fragrance was called, but that bar of soap had it. I read the index card next to the soap, patchouli. Patchouli! The bars were not cut in a straight fashion, definitely hand cut, definitely handmade, yellow to tan in color, and smelled devine. The bars were not wrapped. A stack of brown paper bags was provided. I think you could buy 5 bars, get the 6th free. Oh yes, I bagged up 6 bars! My heart was thumping…this was exactly what I had been looking for, and I had just realized it. This was THE soap!

To this day I do not know who made that soap. I know it was good. It was wonderful on my skin. I did not leave it in the bathroom for my kids to use (bad me)! Besides that, as I said a few days ago, patchouli is a love or hate essential oil. I returned to the shop 3 or 4 times a year to make my soap purchase. There was also a soap shop down the path. They sold every kind of soap imaginable. Boxed soap, soap made somewhere else, many looked mass-made, interesting to me…but it definitely did not resemble the rustic handmade soap that I had learned to love. I never spent a dime on soap in that shop.

That is when I decided to make my own soap. That is when I started reading and learning. To this day, I am still on the natural path. I love boxing my soaps in brown Kraft boxes, stamped with my Annie’s Goat Hill logo. I love the simple labels. If I could sell you soap over the internet off of an old worn primitive butcher block table, I would.

We all have our own styles, and I appreciate each and every one…but this was the beginnings to mine. I can see it and smell it. And I am crazy about it!

How about you, special passions or talents that you discovered, sparked through something simple, simple as handcrafted soap sold on a worn vintage table?

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What a glorius day!

A day to mow the grass, one of my favorite chores. It isn’t a chore when you love to do it, right?

A day to enjoy the blue and purple spring flowers.

A day to reflect on the old red white and blue on the front porch.

A day to enjoy the husband in the blue coat loving one of the last bottle babies. What a beautiful nubian cross doeling she is.

And finally, a beautiful day to make soap, blue and purple, and other spring and summer colors (green, gold, pink). The scents, mmmm, I made the soap right before lunch and I can honestly say my stomach was growling by the time I took the photo. The soap smells wonderful! I will cut them tomorrow and tell you more.

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Occasionally I share something fun that I furnish or decorate with. I found this one at a Goodwill store a year ago. When the attendant told me I could have the chest for $25.00, I quickly loaded it onto the back of my pick up truck! Someone prior to me inadvertently painted the chest. What you are looking at, in the darker areas, is painted leather, hand nailed so neatly to the chest when it was crafted. Such a shame. I cannot see removing paint from leather. But I do not care. I saw value, not so much monetary. There are other places on the chest that someone prior painted yellow and silver (on some of the wood slats across the top), again, I do not care, it is a treasure to me! I love the thing! Inside is wonderful silky-cottony fabric lining, in excellent condition. Makes me smile! It appears to be either an old passenger train chest (tiny wheels up inside the base), or an old steamer chest, and I even saw one on a Western movie, being unloaded from a stagecoach (I doubt that mine is that old). I love these types of items. Some have a history that we know of, and some, as this one, was used without knowing the history, not known by who or when, but I can use my imagination vividly and see it!

I posted yesterday that I thought Annie was in labor, false alarm. She ate much better today. I need to go check on her again. She appears uncomfortable, probably just big with kids. Today is day 145. I am less concerned, but still very watchful.

I worked in the shop today! I whipped out a batch of lavender/plum colored soap with a scent that smells fresh. It felt good to be working with soap again, very good!

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Call the couple that lives at Annie’s Goat Hill a little on the different side. But are we?
Bob likes to work with wood, especially reclaimed lumber.

I love old things. I have several things around the house that others have asked, “Why did you want that?”

These past few months, each time we drove to pick up a load of hay, we noticed an old red barn being dismantled (but never caught anyone at the job site). Once it became obvious that the barn was being taken down very carefully, Bob decided to find out who owned the property. We live amongst of community of Amish and Mennonites. Someone normally knows something, if you start asking. The person working on the barn project, cool as can be, does indeed rebuild old barns! He gave us permission to remove any lumber or materials left on the ground (not a structural part).

We claimed red bead board siding, other types of red painted lumber, and my treasures are…(drum roll)…an old barn door with rusty hardware! I am thinking about having it hinged in 3 places and using it as a screen in my living room. Yep, you read that right! And, under the huge piles of rickety lumber I found an old primitive dresser. The dresser was beyond repair but the drawers looked like keepsakes to me. As you can see in the picture above, they are heavy duty drawers. I actually could see them hanging on the wall in the front room of my house. Some of the drawers have 4 compartments. But they are too heavy, despite my plaster walls, I still think I would create troubles. So, we are going to build a rustic desk of sorts, and attach the drawers to the back, as if they were shelves, compartments. I am way too excited!

Annie’s Goat Hill sells gift sets in wooden crates, and when I say they are made from reclaimed lumber, you can trust that they are. You may be getting a part of a 100 year old barn, you may be getting a part of an old piece of non-repairable furniture, you never know. And in these times, I try to go as green as possible (re-use paper, packing materials, and wood). It is no longer tacky, it is smart to the environment and economical!

Some of the barn siding…

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I just returned from a lunch break. This morning I fed the bottle kids, checked on the expectant mothers (two does should kid today), and then headed to the quiet office to put my head into some much needed desk work. I am better rested today. My dear husband stayed up past midnight, making several trips to the barn last night. The does were still kidding late into the evening. He made sure the newborns were dry and well fed by their dams before he turned in after midnight.

My mind and eyes keep wandering out the office window. It is a bright sunny day, but with a single digit wind chill of 7 degrees. Very warm out there! I am happy to report that the kids in the barn are fine, in fact, some are romping outdoors. I like to give them a choice after they are a few days old. Similar to human kids, playing outdoors seem to make for healthier kids.

So, with the glimpse of the bright blue sky occasionally on my mind, I also rummaged through some of the recent seed and garden catalogs received in the mail. The beautiful photographs, and listing of seeds just makes me long to begin digging in the soil. This spring I hope to begin a garden with a corner dedicated to herbs only. I love to cook, and I love to can, but I also love dried herbs in soap. I want at least 1/4 of the garden to be dedicated to future soap. I would absolutely love to make infusions, and to dabble in essential oils. But the latter would be a very costly venture, and I think I will stay away from that thought for now. Never hurts to dream!

The catalogs that I show in the picture (above) are from Country Corners Greenhouse and Garden Store, Gardener’s Supply Company, and the Sand Hill Preservation Center. The magazine on the bottom left, turned sideways, with a “Think Spring” message and photograph, is from a company called Andy H Weaver. It is an Amish catalog. The Amish used to own our house. I still receive their mail. The catalogs intrigue me. And the gloves I have bought from Mr. Weaver’s company, oh my, they are white nylon, but are the best work gloves I have ever worn! So very warm. Stick them in the washing machine in a lingerie bag, along with the rest of the wash load. They wash and dry to a perfection for years!

The photograph below (sorry for the quality) are items sold in the Amish magazine, all from the state of Ohio. Imagine a gasoline powered wringer type washer machine! I actually own a wringer washer, I am going to plant flowers in it this spring. I bought it at a farm auction a few months back.

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Sunday’s Musings

A friend gave this beautiful framed gift to me a couple of years ago. What a perfect prayer. Simple, and so open-hearted.
Had a great afternoon with friends. I have really enjoyed this weekend. Did a bunch of nothing, yet really did accomplish a lot of things good for the soul.
Now…for the next Sunday item. This knob appeared in my yard yesterday, apparently blown up here by the 74 MPH wind gusts during our recent storm. Does it look familiar to you? I think it is beautiful, and I will find a place in my garden for it, perhaps on a wooden gate or door? It might be old, but could be newer and just weather worn. It is crafted from some sort of metal, what you cannot see is the floral pattern. Apparently it is weather worn. I like it. Are you surprised? I am not! 🙂

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What do coffee pots, platters and websites have in common? Nothing, but I smile as I say that.

My eyes are tired. I started working on the website this morning at 7:15 A.M., I just now finished my project. The navigation has been updated, with an easier to read site map added. If you visit some time, please let me know if you find a broken link or see something that needs repairing.

My feet and legs are cold. I never get cold inside the house, but a day of sitting at the desk has done me in. I have an oil filled heater behind me, I turned it up on high about an hour ago. The corner that my office sits in is the oldest corner in my house. I would venture to say it could be 100 years old. Anyhow, it is a whopping 8 degrees now, wind chill -4. The sunshine is pretty though, quite the fooler! And…I am jumping for joy…I just saw that we are having a heat wave tomorrow, 29 degrees is the expected high! The girls will be back outside, stretching those poor leg muscles back out!

I took several pictures this week of different areas of the house, along with things that I like to collect. The coffee pot and platter in this picture came from the same place as the chair and mirror (blog post several days ago). The man that owned all of these things lived in a very old renovated barn. That coffee pot sat on top of the huge cast iron stove in the dairy room for many years. I love it, and I was thrilled to have been given it!

I am excited to tell that I received a wonderful “Good Pack” today from Anne-Marie, CEO, Brambleberry. I have not had the opportunity yet today to open the bottles of essential oils and fragrances, but it is going to happen within the next several hours! You betcha’! Anne-Marie sent a lovely bar of soap, a soap mold, and some colorants as well. I will share all of these items with you, as well as showcase the very much appreciated hand written card within the next several days! Anne-Marie is an absolute inspiration to me. I never expected anything from commenting on Anne-Marie’s Soap Queen blog, my comments come from my heart. I truly treasure the Good Pack! Thank you!

Well, that wraps up the news in my part of Ohio for the day! I need to do some reading and commenting. From the looks of the thumbnail pics, everyone has been busy! 🙂

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Spring Fever

It seems we all have spring fever! There is not a lot that we can do for this ailment, there are no special remedies to sooth our souls. We simply dream of what we will be doing when the thaw sets in. As many of us do, myself included, we make the best use of the time. In my case, I will work in the soap shop as much as possible, and I am working on the office. The brand new shredder is going to be worn out very quickly! 🙂

Yesterday I walked into my kitchen and caught a glimpse of my canning jars. These jars are at least 5 years old. To the left is a jar filled with dried dill weed. Do you know, I can walk past that jar and be caught by the scent of dill wafting through the air? I love it! To the right are tomatoes, yellow and red banana peppers, and finally a jar of jalapenos and other hot peppers. It has been a very long time since I canned! I miss it, and plan to work it back into my daily life this summer.

My plans for the summer are to move our yard shed. Put some siding on it to make it appear as a cabin of sorts. I am going to begin my cottage/whimsical garden, with a picked fence surrounding!Part of the garden will contain seasonal vegetables, part will be herbs for the soaps and cooking, and part will be zinnias and marigolds (easy to grow), and I hope to start a path of roses (I miss them terribly), along with some other perennial plants. This project will take years, and money, so I can be patient. It will be a fun work in progress! One of my favorite places, and I do not live nearby now, is Nashville, Indiana. I spent a great deal of time there, not so much spending money, but appreciating the gardens that surrounded the various shops. This picture is similar to the types of shops that I so much enjoyed.

My grandmother was quite the gardener. There was no better slaw maker in southeast Missouri! She used a hand held grater, such as the one displayed on a collection shelf in my kitchen. I love the red handle!
Do not look too closely, tee hee, I see cob webs! I think we have a lot to learn from our elders, and others. We can save a bundle of money for ourselves and be much happier people, just by putting a little effort into our lives to sustain some of our own nutritional needs.

Anyhow…how many votes are there for 80 degrees, sunshine on our backs, watching our vegetable gardens grow, and even canning and freezing to make us healthier and to save money? Put one in for me! Wait…perhaps I will cheat, put 2 or more in for me. 🙂

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This week I am busy working in the office on business plans, the website and organization.

On my way to the kitchen on a break today I passed a few of my eclectic items. The first are the chairs.

This chair is rather old. I do not know how old but I did find a similar one dating around 1903 in an antique guide.

I bought the chair at an auction for $5.00. 🙂 The mirror came from the same auction. It did not cost me a thing. Just some convincing. The finish on the mirror is gone. The frame is cracked. I really do not care, the more worn, the more I like it. The seat of the chair could be restrung, as everyone keeps telling me. Nope, I do not want that done either. It is original, and I love it!

I always wanted an old house. I now have one. But what happens is, you start seeing all of the imperfections, and then you start wondering where your head was at! I have hardwood floors in the front of the house, some that need sanding and refinishing. And…when walls were removed in the “old” part of the house (way before my time) the floors were uncovered leaving floor boards that run in two different directions where they join in the middle. More on the house stories some day…and there are plenty!

Anyhow, I thought I would take you inside to see one of my passions. Old things, crazy things, primitives, very dear to my heart!

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