Sunday, August 14, 2011

Brimfield - May 2O11 Better late than never, right?

A tea urn, a beautiful hat, antique candy jars and tiny drawers. What do all these things have in common? Read on and find out.

Carol, Dee, Amanda and I arrived in Brimfield for our annual pilgrimage to junktique heaven on Monday...a day early so we would have time to stock the fridge and hammer out a game plan for the week. This was Carol's happy dance the first night at bedtime.

This was our plan of action for the week.

1. Roll out of bed early every morning and be first on the scene for treasure hunting

2. See and buy as much cool stuff as possible

3. Be mindful of size constraints imposed by airlines (as you can see, that went right out the window on day 3). We're allowed 2 carry ons, right? That's supposed to be 2 carry ons, not 2 people carrying it on.

4. Sneak off for secret prezzie shopping

5. Eat as much fried dough and fair food as we want to (it's OK, we walked it off)

6. Laugh out loud at least 100 times a day

7. Find that one, elusive, can't go home without it treasure

We accomplished all of the above and so much more. Let's see, there was the trunk adventure, a trip to Cape Cod, Mike's Deli in Boston...I could go on and on.

See pictures below of the cool and crazy things we saw on the way to finding some of our most prized treasures.

I loved this little transfer ware saucer. It also had a tiny cutesy cup. Dang, I wrote the pattern down somewhere. It's too bad you can't just turn the picture over.


Every respectable Southern Belle needs something beautiful to serve ice cold sweet tea from while fanning themselves on the veranda on those sultry afternoons. Carol found hers in Mays Field.

Does this hat make my butt look big? Of course not Deedums. But it does match your eyes perfectly. She bought this early in the week but I think it is still one of her favorite finds.

Can't you just see gumdrops, jelly beans or peppermint sticks in these lovely jars? They will make a great addition to Amanda's candy bar!

Can you say "tiny drawers"? This was my, can't go home without it treasure this year. Long, long ago some lucky little girl had this miniature sterling treasure in her dollhouse. It's absolutely fabulous. The doors and drawers all open just like a full-size piece of furniture. Now it belongs to this grownup girl who loves it ever so much.

Keep checking in. I still have lots to share.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Cathedral Grove

The road between Tofino and Victoria is curvy, up and down, narrow and in some places you are literally hanging off the edge of the mountain.

The black line is the way the road looks on the map

The red line is the actual road. Need I say more? And this road was tame compared to the road to Whistler.

There's a very short stretch of straight road between Port Alberni and Nanaimo where you drive right through the center of an amazing grove of red woods. Cars line the highway on both sides as people are drawn out of their vehicles to see these magnificent trees just steps from the roadway.

This is a pic of the center 8" of a tree that was about 3 1/2 feet in diameter. That's a lot of rings. Can you imagine how many there were in the whole tree? One year for each ring, that's 100s of years. And it was a twig compared to some of the others!

This is the last encounter on our trip with these beautiful giants. I've dreamed of seeing them for so many years it's sad to say goodbye. But I'll always cherish the realization of a dream dreamed all those years ago by this then 12 year old girl.

More adventures ahead. I know I'm jumping around but I'm posting as the notion strikes me. Next, I'll have a small post about our trip to Brimfield. Carol covered most of it but I have a few cool pics to share.

So long till next time, Hillarie

Monday, August 1, 2011

New Discoveries Back Home

Several weeks ago my special guy had to travel back home to Illinois for business. His invitation to fly up for the weekend was irresistible so away I went.

When business was taken care of we decided to check out a winery recommended by dear friends from the area but lost our way and found ourselves in the delightful town if Galena. Their claim to fame is being the hometown of Ulysses S. Grant, 18th President of the United States.

Don't be fooled though. This was no sleepy little town. Among the graceful Victorian homes, some dating back to the 1800s and lush gardens we stumbled onto a bustling street lined with historical store fronts housing charming shops and restaurants.

This cool little gazebo was made from the elevator doors of one if the old hotels in town. Doesn't it look like a giant birdcage?

President Grant gave a public speech from this very balcony. That was a little bit before we got here so we didn't get to see him.


My favorites were Fairy Tales Too, an awesome shop full of interesting and eclectic gifts and decor


New Earth, a sweet little shop for all of us pet lovers. I was bummed they were completely out of Schnauzer Monopoly but found some other gifties for Bailey and Beasley and even a cute tee for me.

After a rigorous morning of shopping it was up the hill to Vinny Vanucchi's for a delicious Italian lunch.

After lunch it was off to Chicago to board a flight back home. Lots more places to share. Stay tuned,


Barn Project -Part 1 Is that a tractor in the kitchen?

Lee recently made the decision to have his big old barn back home fitted with a small living space. This could be a challenge to manage from 1500 miles away but with the cost of gas and accommodations and a big empty barn just sitting there, it seems like a no brainer. A footprint using about 40% of the available space was decided on an he put me to work on drawing a very simple floor plan.

We suspected the roof needed replacing and developed a plan for that. Then we contacted and met with a contractor about the living space. He agreed it was doable and started working on a bid based on my primitive little plan.

Original roof plan fell through - now what? Contractor to the rescue!! Donnie said his company could take care of the roofing as well and won't it be better for one firm to take care of everything.

View looking from back to front of the barn interior and yes that is a tractor sitting in the space designated for the kitchen. The fact that there is a little clean up needed goes without saying.

Progress is very slow. We're still waiting for them to start on the roof. Keep watching for updates. Wish us luck.

H & L