Monday, August 31, 2015

Hi there

Miss me?

I guess so, since I had a few messages in my email ;)

This is just a quick post to let you know that I'm okay.

I was in Idaho all last week for a family member's wedding.

So, don't worry, I didn't abandon you and I'll post again very soon.

Today though, I'm going to relax after driving back 12 hours.

I'm sure you understand.

And I missed all of you too :)


Sunday, August 23, 2015

Music break 7

Born Thomas Wright Waller.

He laid the groundwork for modern jazz piano, but he was also an excellent entertainer.

He was so famous and fabulous that in 1926, that he was actually kidnapped to play at one of Al Capone's birthday parties.

With so many wonderful songs, it was hard to pick one, so I chose two.

"Ain't Misbehavin'" 1929

Written by Fats Waller, Harry Brooks (music), and Andy Razaf (lyrics)

Sung here in 1943:

"Until the Real Thing Comes Along" 1937

Words and music by Sammy Cahn, Saul Chaplin, and L.E. Freeman.

Please look him up, he was a truly wonderful musician and there's so much more to enjoy :)


Thursday, August 20, 2015

If you're wondering...

The reason I haven't been sharing many pictures around the house lately is because I've been living in a dark hole.

This Summer, with unusual for here temperatures, rising into the upper 90s and even 100 degrees, it has been unbearable.

Due to this, I've had all the curtains drawn all day every day, for weeks, trying to keep the hot air out. 

Funny thing is, I remember the first year I moved here, at the end of August 2011, thinking that I could live without air-conditioning. But it only got into the  low to mid 80s, which is our "normal" this time of year.

Last year, it was a little warmer than usual, so I bought two stand up air-conditioning units. One for upstairs and one for downstairs.

Looking back, I could laugh at myself thinking it was hot in the high 80s and low 90s.

Have I mentioned that I'm not a fan of Summer?

Growing up in southern California, it was basically... Spring, then Summer, then Spring, then Summer and so forth. 

Judging by all the people that keep moving there, this is everyone's dream.

Not mine.

So, I promised my little girl self, as I watched my brother jumping in the pool, while I watched White Christmas on tv, that when I got older I would live in a place with more than two seasons.

And I've kept that promise.

I just didn't plan on heatwaves.

Anyway, today, just before I drew the curtains on the west side of my home, I noticed the sun streaming in and took a moment to enjoy the light.

And then wished for Fall to arrive very soon ;)


Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Christmas in August?

Is it just me...

Or do you think the middle of August is a bit early for Christmas catalogs?


Monday, August 17, 2015

Quotes from design legends

I was looking up quotes for my Pinterest boards and came across a website that had quotes from some design legends.

So, I thought I'd share some of their sage advice, along with a room they designed just for fun.

Elise de Wolfe is known as "America's first designer."

Nancy Lancaster was the partner of John Fowler and co-owner of Colefax and Fowler.

Albert Hadley was the partner of Sister Parish and co-founder of Parish-Hadley, Associates.

Dorothy Draper created a new style called "Modern Baroque" and was also a cousin of Sister Parish.

Words to design by, I think :)

Do you have a favorite design quote?


Saturday, August 15, 2015

Another family recipe

I haven't done a recipe in awhile.

I don't know why.

Maybe because I've been dieting and by the time dinner is ready to eat I want to shove it in my face, instead of taking a picture?

Probably ;)

Oh and by dieting, I mean not eating as much.

I am not a fad dieter.


Chicken Pineapple Casserole has been in my mom's recipe box since the 1970s as far as I know.

She says she got it from her sister, but for whatever reason, my aunt claims she never made anything this fattening, so it's a mystery as to where it came from, but it's usually made for a girl's night in, watching something fun like the Oscar's (Academy Awards).

Weird fact... 99% of men hate it.

Just like they hate award shows and the red carpet.

Anyway, here it is before it's baked.

And here's the recipe card.

Yeah... not exactly clear directions.

I guess I was in a hurry.

Just a warning for all you purists (which I usually am too)... it's an old recipe and I've learned the hard way that if you mess with them, they don't taste the same.

So, mess with it at your own risk.

Basically, this is mostly a one bowl and two casserole dishes (although you could make it one if you use the same one to cook the chicken) dinner, now that I've gotten my hands on it.

First, bake about three or four (if small) breasts of chicken, with olive oil, salt and pepper, at 350 degrees for 40 minutes. Then shred or cut it up and put it in a large bowl.

Preheat or turn down the oven to 325.

Then cut up and throw in a couple stalks of celery in the same bowl with the chicken and add 1/3 cup Catalina dressing, two small bags of slivered almonds, 1 1/2 cups sour cream, a 1/2 teaspoon mustard, 1 teaspoon salt, 20 oz can pineapple chunks drained, and about 1 1/2 cups of grated sharp cheddar cheese (I hand grate mine). Then stir together and put in a 9x13 inch casserole dish.

In the same bowl, mix together one bag of crushed Ruffles potato chips and 1 1/2 cups of sharp cheddar cheese and spread on top.

Put it in the oven for 45 minutes.

It should look like this when it comes out:

And these are all the dishes you'll end up with aside from the plates and silverware.

Easy peasy, right?

I hope you like it ;)


Friday, August 14, 2015

The cedar chest (music break 6)

This is my great grandparent's cedar chest.

I've shared it before, but not the story behind it.

(Although, some of you might remember it from my last blog.)

That chest up there just happens to have been where they stored their money.

You see, my great grandfather didn't trust the banks, because they weren't insured. Back then, if you put money in them it didn't necessarily mean that you'd be able to get your money back out. This didn't change until the FDIC (Federal Deposit Insurance Corp) was created by the banking act in 1933. You can read more about that 'here'.

Because of his mistrust, the crash of 1929 and the Great Depression didn't affect them as much and he was able to keep his business alive, and eventually sell it to their two sons, one of them being my grandfather. 

Also, during the Great Depression, my great grandmother, using some of that money, helped out her friends and neighbors by buying up some of the wares they were selling in order to survive. Now I'm the keeper of quite a few of those items and that seemingly plain old chest, that my great grandfather used to steer the course of history for my family.

I'm extremely grateful to him, for having the foresight not to trust the banks back then, but sadly, as we all know, a lot of people weren't as fortunate.

Here's an excerpt from :

The Great Depression (1929-39) was the deepest and longest-lasting economic downturn in the history of the Western industrialized world. In the United States, the Great Depression began soon after the stock market crash of October 1929, which sent Wall Street into a panic and wiped out millions of investors. Over the next several years, consumer spending and investment dropped, causing steep declines in industrial output and rising levels of unemployment as failing companies laid off workers. By 1933, when the Great Depression reached its nadir, some 13 to 15 million Americans were unemployed and nearly half of the country’s banks had failed. Though the relief and reform measures put into place by President Franklin D. Roosevelt helped lessen the worst effects of the Great Depression in the 1930s, the economy would not fully turn around until after 1939, when World War II kicked American industry into high gear.

For this music break I'm sharing two songs that embody that time period.

"Brother, Can you spare a dime?"

Music by Jay Gorney and lyrics by Yip Harburg.

Sung by Bing Crosby in 1932

You can read more about the history of this song 'here'. 


"Happy Day are Here Again"

Music by Milton Ager and lyrics by Jack Yellen.

Sung by Annette Hanshaw

The song eventually became the 1932 presidential campaign song for Franklin Delano Roosevelt and it's also associated with the repeal of prohibition in 1933.

Which is a whole other post for another time ;)


Wednesday, August 12, 2015


When I look at homes that are decorated by people that want an authentic 1930s, 40s, 50s, etc... look, I often wonder why every single thing is from one decade.

For example...

Have you seen 'this show'?

(Sorry, but I couldn't find the whole thing online.)

After my mother and I had both watched it, I called and asked her if the 1950s were really like the way these woman had imagined it.

In other words, was it authentic?

She started laughing.

I knew she would.

The first thing she pointed out was the way they lived their lives...

To sum it up, she said that it was like they had watched too many episodes of this:

or this:

 Then the way they dressed...

I'm not even going to tell you what she said about that, but let's just say there was a whole soliloquy about their tattoos.

Then it was about the decor...

She said (and I'm summing it up again) that it looked like it was decorated by a set designer and looked nothing like real life back then.

For example, here's an ad from the 50s:

And here's real life:

Now, I'm not saying my mother is an authority on the 1950s, but since she grew up in California back then, I would say that she would have a pretty good idea of what it was really like.

Personally, I think that if they're happy, that's great and I'm not trying to pick on them or be mean, but  if they're trying to emulate that decade as it really was, then I kinda have to agree with her, especially about the decor.

Thinking back on my own 1970s childhood and then looking through pictures of decor ads back then, I can see why people would think that's what every home looked like, unless they were alive then.

By looking at those ads, you would think that everyone's home had shag carpet...

and I can guarantee you that there was only 2 houses I ever saw it in and it wasn't at my parent's house.

By the way and maybe it's just me, but doesn't it look like somebody used the hide of Snuffleupagus to cover those stairs?


If I were to live and decorate like these gals, but instead of the 1950s, I went with the 1970s, it would be like me watching too many episodes of this:

and we all know how realistic that was ;)

So where am I going with this?

Well, although I live a "vintage lifestyle", my life is nothing like what is often portrayed by in tv programs. (There's another example at the end of this post.)

And that's why my home looks the way it does and not from only one decade.

I'm not trying to look or live like an ad or a tv show.

I live a life, surrounded by things that were passed down to me or gathered slowly over time and mixed together. It just happens to look like it stopped somewhere in time, but you're not quite sure exactly when.

A good example would be my living room...

where I can count all the "new" objects on just about one hand. 

Everything else is from before 1960 with most of it being from much earlier decades.

Which, as it turns out, kind of resembles some of the black and white pictures of old living rooms that I've seen in family picture albums.

Same picture in black and white:

And my kitchen...

where even though the cabinets are original to house and the sink is from the 1930s, it's a mishmash of different eras.

There's no way to pinpoint either of those rooms as looking like any particular decade.

In fact, people that come over for the first time, say things like, "This reminds me of my grandparents home" or "I feel like I've stepped back in time". They never say "It looks like a 1930s museum", because it doesn't.

As you can see from the real 1950s kitchens, I showed you above, most homes back then had things were acquired over time.

Which is what I wanted.

Even my grandma Bonnie (that I've mentioned before) got a microwave for Christmas one year and there it sat in her little 1940s kitchen on a tray table from the 1950s like the one I have:

Not that any of this makes me better than those gals.

It doesn't at all.

I'm just going about it differently.

Here's the other show about this vintage living stuff:

Yes, I can relate to some of what they said, especially to that father's confusion about his daughter dressing that way (my mom feels the same). Actually, people in general stare at me when I'm in my vintage clothing, but I've gotten used to it and most of them, that live here, have gotten used to it too.

 But obviously I don't agree on their views about having children, since I have two. And unlike them, I watch regular tv, modern movies, I know who the leader of my country is (lol), I'm not naive enough to think that there weren't problems back then, I don't hide my laptop, and I cope just fine in the modern world, going to restaurants, bars and the grocery store. 

I just happen to like walking into a home that shuts most of the modern world out and living my life there, like they would have in the past.

Like I've said before, it's just me being me :)


Monday, August 10, 2015

Last week random




(recipe found 'here' at my dear friend, Michael's blog Rattlebridge Farm with a MUCH prettier version)

Bubba sleeping...

Shhh... he works so hard ;)

Minor kitchen tinkering...

A clock found by the husband of sweet Jillian has come to live with me, after she subtly mentioned to me that I might want to have it ;)

She also sent along this adorable cup and saucer.

Thank you, Jillian! I love them both :)

She has a blog called Bella Rosa Antiques, an Etsy Shop and an online store.

So, I moved the house blessing picture that was hanging above the phone in the kitchen and placed the clock there...

and mixed it in with the pictures above the stove.

I think it works there, for now ;)

Then there was barbecuing...

Tree gazing...

Bubba lap sitting...

and a gorgeous Sunday sunset...

to top off a long hot week :)


Thursday, August 6, 2015

Music break 5

First I want to say thank you...

Thank you so much to all of you that left comments on my last post. Whether you left one for the first time, or have once in awhile, or have every time... I so enjoyed reading each and every single one. And I'm still reading them as they come in and will be answering more of them as soon as I can :)

I normally don't answer ALL the comments on my blog, unless they're from readers that don't have one, but I thought that this time I would make the effort to do so, because I asked a favor of all of you and I wanted you to know that I care.

I care that you took the time to introduce yourselves and I loved hearing about your lives and/or why you visit me or even if you just said "Hello".

All of you warmed my heart.

So, thank you.


Now, let's go back in time to 1938...

I have two songs this time and both were sung by Bob Hope and Shirley Ross.

First is "Thanks for the Memory".

Written by Ralph Rainger with lyrics by Leo Robin for the film "The Big Broadcast of 1938".

It eventually became Mr. Hope's signature song.

Do any of you remember the Bob Hope specials?

I used to love them :)

Next is "Two Sleepy People".

 Written by Hoagy Carmichael with lyrics written by Frank Loesser.

A lot of people have recorded this song, but to me this one is the sweetest.

Here they are singing it in the movie "Thanks for the Memory"

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!

And thank you again :)


Wednesday, August 5, 2015


I've noticed that not everyone that reads my blog leaves a comment.

Which is completely fine.

I promise :)

But naturally, I wonder about my readers.

Wouldn't you?

So, if you've left a comment before or not, I'd love it if you would tell me who you are and where you're from.

Maybe a little about yourself too?

I promise, I won't bite ;)

If not, that's okay.

I understand.

It's just me being curious.


Tuesday, August 4, 2015


I've showed this view of my sewing room/office/library many times.

Do you know why you never see the other parts of this room?

Because it's scary!

It's a place where things are put, until I can either get rid of them or find a place for them to go, and it's become a mess.

I was thinking that if I show you this horror, that maybe it'll motivate me to do something about it.

So, here we go...

The desk where I blog from and pay bills:

Not your typical "Where Bloggers Create" space, huh? ;)

You can see that I need to paint the walls towards the ceiling, but moving that desk will not be easy. I've been told it's either German or English and from the early 1800s, but all I know for sure is that it's a beast to move, because it's so heavy.

The reason for the weird paint is that I had shelves (not original to the house) removed, to fit it on that wall, since it's the only place in my house that it would work. 

And I wasn't going to get rid of it. 

No siree Bob! 

I love that old desk, heavy or not :)

Oh and that white thing next to my chair?

The only air-conditioner on the main level, besides the one in Annie's room. It's an ugly necessity during the Summer, because as I've mentioned before...

I don't have central air.

Now you know why I want Fall to get here. 

For all those that said they didn't want that... I'll be happy to send my 90 degree and above heatwave your way, but you have to turn off your central air first :p 

Moving on to the other side of the room:

This is the bane of my existence.

See all those book and pictures?

I'll have to take all of that stuff down in order to paint the shelves.

A daunting task.

And I would know since I'm the one that unpacked the boxes and put it all up there.

Also, imagine the mess it'll create in the rest of my house.


So now that you know what the rest of the room looks like, here's my inspiration pictures.

Remember, it's more the colors and the feel than anything else.

The green shelf inspiration...

I'm leaning toward these colors...

The black shelf inspiration...

And finally, 1929 inspiration...

All these images can be found on my pinterest

I can't make up my mind.

I want the room to feel warm, cozy and somewhat dark, but not too dark, if that makes sense. 

The problem is that you can see it from the dining room, which will probably have yellow walls eventually...

and also from the kitchen, which you can kind of see here...

So I don't want it look odd.

My guess is the green shelves would be best, with either a soft yellow or a lighter green on the walls than on the shelves or the drapes, which for some reason always look grey in pictures, but in fact they're sage green.

Decisions, decisions...

I'm curious, what would you do?

Not that I'll listen ;)