Thursday, March 31, 2011

What Is It About Old Stuff?

I've loved antiques since an early age. My first piece I remember buying was an old purse. The kind that had a clear vinyl outer covering, beaded a little underneath with a metal chain handle. I have no idea what happened to it. I think I paid a quarter at a local fleamarket while shopping with my parents. During the same trip a dealer gave me a little antique mouse toy that moved by either pulling a wind up string or by pulling it around. I was hooked.

Over the years I collected a few more little treasures.

I love old stuff because it stands the test of time.

It says "I've lasted this long and I'm worth enjoying for a little while longer."

It is hard to describe but gosh I just can't help myself. Antiques hold all kinds of mysteries and I just enjoy finding them, selling them, and showing them off!

Why do you enjoy antiques? I'd love to hear about it.

Today I'm joining Thrifty Thursday over at Bloggaritaville!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Victorian Shell Purse

This charming little antique coin size purse is adorable. The casing is made of some type of shell, like maybe abalone. It is a sweet little size, perfect for coins.

It is my contribution today for Second Chance Tuesday.

You may check it out here, in my Bella Rosa store.

Interested in joining today's SCT? Here is a Mr. Linky below:

Monday, March 28, 2011

Laughter & Memories: Sicilian Style

This weekend went by in a flash. Isn't it always the way when you are having fun? We celebrated a few things. The cake above was for my Sister's birthday. But first we celebrated the life of a beloved family member, my Gramma. When my Sister and her family arrived she said "It sure smells like Italian in here!" My Mother and I had been simmering homemade tomato sauce for two hours by the time they arrived. Then there was the long awaited taste test of the meatballs. We tried to duplicate the family recipe which sadly, no one really had, except in our memory. We decided we did okay but it will be perfected in the next get together. It was still absolutely delicious. Did I mention I love Italian food? We also watched a video I created highlighting pictures of my Gramma throughout her lifetime. It was very special. We cried.
Then we toasted to her long life and many memories. And we laughed. She would have loved it. We sure did!

I'll leave you with our recipe for Sicilian tomato sauce since we are SURE of how to make it:

1 28 oz can crushed (or whole) tomatoes

2 cans tomato paste

1 small onion

1 clove garlic

3 tablespoons olive oil

3 tablespoons sugar 1 teaspoon fresh basil, chopped

1/2 teaspoon oregano

Salt and pepper

Sautee onions and garlic in the olive oil until translucent. Stir in the tomato paste. Fill the two empty tomato paste cans with water and pour them in. Stir well. Add the large can of crushed tomatoes. (If using the whole tomatoes be sure to squeeze the tomatoes in your hand until crushed like a good Sicilian would do) Fill half of that can with water and add to sauce. Add the basil and oregano. Add the sugar. Salt and pepper to taste. Simmer for 2 hours, stirring occasionally. Add any meats (meatballs, ground beef, or Italian sausage) for the last additional hour and simmer.

Your whole house will smell delizioso!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

A Most Graceful Celebration

This weekend I'm having family in from out of state. We'll be celebrating my Gramma's life. She passed away recently which I wrote about last month. Her name was Grace.

I've been working on a video montage using photos of her throughout her lifetime. We'll all watch and probably cry. We'll be making homemade meatballs and sauce in honor of her as well as passing the tradition on to my neice and nephew, teaching them how to make it.

I can't wait.

I think she would have had a good time at our gathering. And we'll be reminiscing about all the good times we had with her.

I'll be back after the weekend with photos from our celebration.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Spring Chicken

This Lenox rooster is so cheerful and full of pastel spring time colors. It is my focus of today's Second Chance Tuesday. Not an antique but we do have a "Collectibles" category which this piece falls into. It was tough not to set this one out in my own kitchen. And hey, the title "Spring Chicken" sounded better than "Spring Rooster!"
Others may join in by linking up below:

Sunday, March 20, 2011

A Very Basic Day = Blessed

(Photo I took of a sweet little church in Springfield, Maine.
I call it "Weathering the Storms.")

An earthquake, a Tsunami, near nuclear meltdown, revolutions and wars.

It is overwhelming when you think about it.

Recently a friend emailed me and asked "How was your Sunday?"

I replied:

"Good. We had church, lunch, naps, dinner, playtime, laundry...TV.
A pretty basic day but compared to the rest of the world...blessed!"

I'm counting my blessings today. Won't you?

Also, prayers for the people of Japan. May God comfort them as they grieve
and those that need food and water supplies will have them soon.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Latest Arrivals: In the Pink!

Here are a few of my latest arrivals... I didn't realize how many things had shades of pink until now:
Catherine Klein was known for her gorgeous artwork. This piece of early, turn of the century ephemera is no exception. Note her signature in the lower right hand corner.

Sweet little bunnies for Easter time... pink nosies and ears!

A baby spoon becomes "girlie" with a little bit of old fashioned ribbon...

Impressionistic print of a Parisian lady and her parasol. Say THAT five times fast.

A pair of 1940's/1950's prints...

Sweet vintage "rose" Verly soap box, made in Germany.

Although this holiday is behind us, Valentines never seem to go out of style. I like how the blue ribbon is drawn into the card as though it is woven. Neat details in these old pieces.

How about a little mini vanity items in pink? This rouge tin is amazing to me. First, I have never called "blush" rouge...but I guess it is my generation. This little compact tin is still full. And gosh, it is so darn cute!

I'm linking up with Pink Saturday. Join in the fun!

My latest arrivals may be found by going to the Bella Rosa Antiques website here.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

A Little Bit Irish

Yep. I'm a little bit Irish. And a little bit of a lot of other things. But since I have red hair (which is actually from the Scottish side) I like to don my green colors for the fun of it.

It is also my kitty's "birthday."

Meet Minnie. She was the only tabby out of all black kittens. She was also the only lively one of the litter. I picked her to come home with me about fifteen years ago while I was living in America's Heartland. I like to refer to her as my "Missouri Cat."

Here she was as a wee kitten. It is such a short time that they are this cute...but Minnie has all kinds of interesting quirks that make her special. She is also very smart. How do cats get so smart?

Anyway, a Happy St. Patrick's Day to ya! I'm not going to do any history pieces in this post. It is just going to be fun. So, I found an Irish Soda Bread recipe to share... not that I've actually made it or anything. Maybe I should try it! That and have Irish stew.


1 1/2 cups buttermilk

2 tablespoons melted butter or 2 tablespoons margarine

1 slightly beaten egg

1 1/4 cups raisins

3 cups flour

2/3 cup sugar

1 tablespoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In medium bowl, combine buttermilk, melted butter, egg, and raisins.
Set aside.
In large bowl, combine dry ingredients and mix to combine.
Add buttermilk mixture to dry ingredients and mix until combined.
Spoon into greased loaf pan and bake for 50-55 minutes.
Leave in pan for 1 minute.
Remove to wire rack to cool.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Vintage Paper Egg & A Special Happy Birthday

Hello and thank you for reading my blog! Today I'd like to start out my post with a special shout out to my Dear Sister... it is her birthday! Feel free to leave her a bday greeting in my comments section. She has been one of my most faithful readers and I love her very much.

HappyBirthday Sista K! Enjoy your cake!

Okay... now without further ado, I bring you my weekly installment of:

Welcome to Second Chance Tuesday! Today I'm showing an old paper egg. Its original purpose was the hold candy at Easter time.

I thought it was perfect for my Bella Rosa shop because it is decorated with rose paper.

The inside is another sweet toile paper and the teensy print reveals that it is made in Western Germany.

How sweet! A candy collector or someone who collects Easter eggs would love this piece.

It definitely deserves a second chance. It is available at a reduced price during my SPRING FLING sale in my shop, here.

If you'd like to join Second Chance Tuesday here is a Mr. Linky below:

Monday, March 14, 2011

Spring Fever

Over the weekend I worked at my antique booth. We were busy in the antique mall but I did find some time to squeeze in some shopping for Bella Rosa inventory. I found a really neat piece that I can't wait to take a photo of and list on the website. Maybe tomorrow night!

As the weather gets warmer, the spring "fever" starts to set in and dealers like me are already thinking about getting outdoors and looking for "new" finds.

Let me know if there is anything you are looking for... and I'll bring my list with me the next time I go a hunting!

Stay tuned...

Friday, March 11, 2011

Beautiful Shamrocks

(Before I get into today's post I'd like to first take a moment to recognize a devastating earthquake and Tsunami that hit Japan ... our thoughts and prayers go out to the people dealing with this tragedy. May they have strength, courage, and calm and look to God to be with them as help comes in. My heart goes out to them.)

Irish Belleek. Recognizable by its beautiful lustre and delicate quality.

And the shamrocks kind of help. Here is a little information and history about Belleek porcelain.

Pottery in the region began around 1849, after John Caldwell Bloomfield inherited his father's estate. Seeking to provide employment for his tenants, who had been affected by the Irish potato famine and, being an amateur mineralogist, he ordered a geological survey of his land. On finding that the area was rich in minerals, Bloomfield went into partnership with London architect Robert Williams Armstrong and Dublin merchant David McBirney. In setting up a pottery business, Bloomfield managed to get a railway line built to Belleek so that coal could be delivered with which to fire kilns.

Building started on the pottery in 1858. Initially starting with domestic products, it wasn't until 1863 that small amounts of the Parian porcelain for which Belleek is famous for to this day, was successfully produced. By 1865, the prestige of the company had increased enough that its market included Ireland, England, the United States, Canada and Australia, and clients included the Prince of Wales, Queen Victoria and the nobility. (Information from Wikipedia)

And what's a little green without a little pink? Today I'm linking to Pink Saturday... because pink and green go so well together!

The Belleek vase above may be found in my shop ... and I've taken a discount off of it for you this weekend... enjoy! Also, for my Pink Saturday readers... 20% off of anything pink or green or a combination of both! (Just contact me and I'll set up the sale for you.)

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Selecting Among Old Things

To select well among old things, is almost equal to inventing new ones. - Nicholas Charles Trublet

This week I'm excited about my latest finds... these are just some of them. The rest may be found in my Just Listed category here.

Dear Hubs gets credit for finding this one. Gorgeous artwork on these old old books.

Two feed sack bags... in PINK! This was a neat find... when do you ever see them in pink?

This is adorable. A French (Peanut Chews from Philly) tin with a scene from Paris. So sweet!

Love's greeting! With a French scene no less. I like how she has not ONE but TWO suitors.

Shabby chic early vintage china berry bowls. You can do so much more with these than just fruit. Ring and pin dish on your vanity, hold odds and ends in your powder room... love them. These have a monogrammed "K" on them. Hmmmmm....maybe my Sister would like them?

I was so excited when I found this little French tin! Ooooh praslines and everything French. Little teeny pink roses... ooh la la!

These old Cooperstown, NY bank checks fascinate me. They are all made out to "savings" except for one which is made out to "self" ...

An old A&P (The Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company) advertising card. This one is titled "BEAUTY" ... I can see why! A&P had some of the loveliest art in their ads. This one is no exception.

More of my favorite rose postcards...the shoe is fantastic!

And last but not least I'm showing this cute cute little "Grecian" urn. Lots of ideas for using it: Make up brushes, pens, flowers, you name it. Sometimes it is the little "finds" that can brighten up a small spot in my house. What do you like to do in yours?

Thanks so much for checking out this week's arrivals!