Thursday, October 20, 2016


A house is made of bricks and beams: a home is made of hopes and dreams.  Anonymous

The boat is out of the water now so we have to finally admit that Autumn is here to stay. Well, that is until the first snowfall. We had our final boat outing on a beautiful Fall day. 

 We drove the boat to a little quiet cove and relaxed while watching barges go by...

 Kayakers paddling by...

 And reading magazines while also listening to the seagulls and the quiet lap of small waves rocking the boat. It was so relaxing, we didn't want to leave. And, yes, I'm reading Country Living.

And now I'm busy getting my Etsy Store ready for Christmas!  Here are a few of my new listings:

                                                        An antique cotton bird doily.

An antique European Pillow Sham..

A vintage advertising wire rack. I think this would make a cute plant stand or kitchen rack for stoneware pitchers filled with utensils.

This stoneware blue striped pitcher.

And this antique woven laundry basket with wood handles.


Livin' the Dream....

Monday, October 17, 2016


                                                   Be your own kind of beautiful!

So I've been excited to find lots of very cool stuff for my Etsy shop, Gwen And Alma's! I still find myself drawn to Farmhouse/Country Blue treasures. Blue just makes me smile!  But as you'll see in my Etsy store, I'm still open to picking up other things that jump out at me.

The blue slats in the background I purchased from a collector who said they had been truck bed slats. I have a spot where I could use them in my home, but right now I'm using them as a backdrop for photos.  Aacckkk! Too many shadows in these pictures!

Right now I'm watching "Dancing With The Stars" while I write this. I  don't believe in multi-tasking so I'm going to get off the computer and enjoy watching the dancers! Dancing also makes me smile!

Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, October 13, 2016


So I was going through "drafts" of blog posts that I wrote but for one reason or another never pushed the "publish" button, and I found this one. It's really an old one but worth putting out there. All the news is old and it was written in the month of May! And not even in this year! So all the news is old! But the steps to conquering busyness still apply. So I thought I'd put it out there anyway. Hope it doesn't confuse anyone! On the other hand, I'm probably risking people thinking I've "lost it". But, oh well, for what it's worth, here it is...

May has always been a busy month for me. When my husband was teaching and coaching basketball we were invited to a minimum of 20 graduation parties a year. The 49 room Historical mansion we live in became busier than ever with future brides wanting to tour the house for their upcoming weddings, in addition to getting the house ready for Spring and Summer, and the end of the month was our big sales event for Hob Nobbers.

 This year, May seems busier than ever...I have a baby shower, wedding shower, granddaughter graduation and party, a friend's retirement party, small group potluck to cook for, volunteering for a church event, three end of the year events for three grandchildren,  my adult daughter, son-in-law, and granddaughter will be moving home from China and staying with us until they find a place to live, and my BIG SPRING HOB NOBBER SALE. Oh, and Mother's Day. And my husband had already bought tickets for us to go to a baseball Twins game. And we have to get the boat in the water and cleaned for the summer. Did I mention that my Mom fell and broke her nose and is in rehab? And all in May! Other than my Mom falling, these are all fun things! And I'm looking forward to all of them. But still I began to panic wondering how I was going to get to everything all in one piece. It seemed overwhelming! And these events were in addition to our "regular responsibilities"!

So here is what I did: I sat down and mapped out a plan for the month of May. I took my calendar, a notebook, pen, ipad, phone, and a cup of coffee and found a comfy place to sit and plan my fun month of May. I put the events in the calendar. I RSVP'd ( by phone and iPad ) everyone about the events while I sat there. I made a list of all the gifts I would need to buy and what day I would shop for graduation gifts, baby gifts, retirement gifts, Mother's Day gifts, etc. I also decided I had to forego some things. Someone else will go with my husband to the Twins game and that's OK with me. The kids and grandkids offered to clean the boat and get it ready for Summer. Things were falling into place and I was feeling much more in control and much calmer. I was looking forward to all the fun events!

So here are 5 steps you can take to "get things done" when you are feeling overwhelmed about your "to do" list:

1) Gather up your calendar, notebook, pen, phone, and iPad, a cup of your favorite beverage and find a comfy place to work. Better yet,  find a spot with a lovely outdoor view!

2) Make a "to do" list for each event. If shopping is involved, make a list of things you need to buy and set a date for shopping. Or maybe shop online while you are sitting there if you are so inclined.

3) Decide if there are some things you can forego and/or  let others do for you. Even if you have to hire help for something like cleaning it is worth your sanity.  RSVP while you are sitting there of events that require it. Sometimes events will fall on the same day/time and you have to make a choice of which you will attend. 

4) Jot down the events  you will attend on your calendar.

5) Make a "Projects List" of things you need to accomplish. ( for example in my case I have a projects list for my Hob Nobber sales )

Oh, and one more thing! Work your plan, be in the moment, and enjoy every event!

Wednesday, October 5, 2016


                                                    Only 80 days until Christmas!

I know, it's not even Halloween yet! But I'm trying to get in the  swing of things like Etsy shops do around this time. This will be my first Holiday Shopping Season in my Etsy Store and I want to be ready!

But I DO have mixed feelings about it! Like, I DID feel annoyed  when I was at the Mall and THEY were getting decorated for Christmas! Oh, well.

 I've listed a few new things in my Etsy Shop, Gwen And Alma's! I'm trying to get lots more items listed before Christmas shopping begins. I'd like to have 200 items listed. Right now I'm at 117. Think I'll get there?

This 1950's Planters Peanuts Stoneware Jar is now in my Shop. The chair that it is on didn't sell in our last sale, so I decided to keep it for  photo ops. And I just bought this new plant which I love. I just hope I can keep it alive. I'm not very good with plants though I love to have them around. So we'll see what happens.

This really old stoneware soap dish is listed. 

Also listed is this cute South Western Lamp Shade with Twine Trim and this Vintage Wood Pencil Box. You could use the box for other things as well...Comb and Brush, Keys, etc.

           How about a  Rustic Pail With Wood  for your Farmhouse or Country Decor? Put a plant in it or find another use for it!

                                    White and Cream Buttons, Anyone? Yup, I've got em!

                                I was going to list these Fire King Mugs with Circus Clowns...

But there's something going on around the country with SCARY CLOWNS! Have you heard about this? Just today, my niece who lives in Florida said their Middle Schools were on lock-down because of a "Clown Threat"! What?!?  That's Crazy! Anyway, I thought I'd better wait and list these later when the clown threats disappear.

The other day I was invited to the Wedding Reception Dinner of a family friend who is Somali. So much fun and so much good food catered from an Indian Restaurant.

                                                      Here's the Happy Couple...

                                                      And here are the proud Mama's!

                                            And lots of little cuties with their beautiful Moms! I wish I had taken more pictures! Everyone was gorgeous!

Wednesday, September 28, 2016


When you focus on problems, you'll have more problems. When you focus on possibilities, you'll have more opportunities.      KUSHANDWIZDOM

Les, my husband, began collecting vintage canes or walking sticks a while back so whenever I'm out hunting for treasures I keep my eyes open for interesting and unique canes. Some collections can end up adding clutter to your home, but something as simple as canes can be contained and even add to decor.

As you can see there is room for many more canes so I'll keep helping him find them.

                           I'll share MY collections in another post. What do YOU collect?

Tuesday, September 27, 2016


                      Autumn is a second Spring when every leaf is a flower.  Albert Camus

 Whew! I can't believe how fast Summer flew by! If you read my last post you'll know that I've been trying my hardest to prolong the Summer but with the changing of the leaves already happening and the crisper cooler weather, there is no denying it! And sooooo.... I'm ready to....

                                             CELEBRATE AUTUMN!

 I bought some gourds, clipped the dried hydrangeas, and plopped them in my dough bowl! Next up I'll be making my FALL BUCKET LIST which I will share with you in a future post!

I've got the Autumn scented candles going, bananas getting ripe to make banana bread,  and we even gave in and turned on the heat! I was freezing! I know some people try to last as long as they can to leave the heat off but with all the rain we had it brought along a dampness into the house, that with the cold, just chilled me to the bone!

Last week, Les and I had a little Get Away. A trip to the Lake for  a late Anniversary celebration. We just wanted to go where there was a relaxing lake to sit and dream over. Why is water so relaxing? We stayed at a condo near where we keep our pontoon, just in case the weather was nice and we could go on a little cruise up the river. But it was cold and cloudy. Yet, still relaxing!

We took a day trip around a "loop" that took us across the Mississippi River into Wisconsin from Minnesota, stopping at quaint little towns along the Mississippi. The highlights were the many antique shops we always stop at. And we happened to find one new one!

Another highlight of this Get Away was the calorie splurge of allowing ourselves dessert! I had Carmel Flan with Raspberries, Tripleberry Pie, and Carmel Pecan Cheesecake! Les had a Triple Layer Chocolate Cake, Coconut Cream Pie, and A Scoop of Carmel Ice Cream With Carmel Corn. At different meals of course! I just realized now that we must have missed some meals without dessert. We were gone for two and a half days! I guess the Reese's Peanut Butter Cups that we devoured made up for that. And we only gained 5 pounds each! It was worth it!

GWEN AND ALMA'S SNEAK PEEK:  Here is a European Pillow Case/Sham that I will list soon in our Etsy Shop. 

                                                    Here's a closer look at some details...

                                  It fits two standard pillows but the pillows are not included. Check for it soon at Gwen And Alma's for more photos and details!

Thanks for stopping by!  

Saturday, September 17, 2016


So I'm kind of experiencing two seasons at the same time. I'm not quite ready to let go of Summer but also looking forward to the Fall! We haven't taken the boat out of the water yet but there are pumpkins all over the house. It's a strange mix but it feels right!

Tomorrow it is supposed to be over 80 degrees so we're going boating. The water is so relaxing and the scenery so gorgeous!

And I had a "mulled cider" scented candle lit all day scenting the house with delightful Fall scents.

 I'll probably really "get into" Fall after we get the boat out of the water.

I'm still trying to get things organized after our last sale and at the same time trying to get some items listed in my Etsy Shop, Gwen And Alma's! I hope to get many items listed by October to get ready for the Christmas season.

As soon as I figure out how to pack this sweet antique stool, I'm going to list it in my Etsy shop. It will be the first "big" item I've listed on Etsy.  I've been hesitating because of the difficulty of packing the big stuff.

After that I may begin to add some more smaller furniture pieces to sell. We'll see how this one goes first. If anyone has any good ideas on making packing this thing easier, let me know!

Don't to forget to check out my Etsy shop, Gwen And Alma's! I would love it if you would "Favorite" our little shop! Before Christmas I'll be giving away a gift certificate to spend in our shop through a Give-Away on this blog. Be looking for it! So go look now and see if there is something you might want....maybe even this little stool!

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Our Sale, The Winner, and Food

Thank you to all who came to our Hob Nobber sale over Labor Day weekend! I hope you found a treasure to take home with you. Here's a photo of all of us workers behind our check-out table before we opened. We're missing a few more who showed up later...

Carol Wells was the winner of our Give-Away! She said she had never won anything before so we were happy to honor her with her VERY FIRST EVER WIN!

On Monday we had a big thunderstorm that didn't  dampen our spirits or keep our guests away. What else are you going to do on a rainy dreary holiday but shop til you drop while sipping on a Starbucks coffee? Am I right?

There was one HUGE CLAP OF THUNDER though that scared the bejeemers out of us! I think lightening must have struck something nearby which happens too often as our house sits high on top of a hill surrounded by many tall trees! We've had more than one bolt of lightening take out our TVs! This morning a huge tree went down in the woods surrounding our house so Les went out to see if maybe it had been the thing that was struck by lightening. We are surrounded by 11 acres of grounds that are  mostly woods. Last week a giant branch fell down into the parking lot and we came home to see a doe and two fawns eating the leaves off the fallen branch right in the parking lot area.

On a side note: We don't go to McDonalds often but our grandson, Charlie, likes to go and his Mother won't take him ( she likes him to eat healthy ) so sometimes we cave in and treat him to a meal there. I get a hamburger with pickleS ( accent on the least that's what I order ) and I always get ONE PICKLE! So the other day we went to Five Guys Burgers And Fries and I ordered pickleS on my hamberger. This is what I got:

                                      A veritable MOUNTAIN OF PICKLES! Just HAD to take a photo of THAT, though I'm usually not one of those people who likes to take pictures of their food! My granddaughter and her friends, on the other hand,  like to take LOTS of photos of their food and I told her when she has grandchildren she will be showing old photos to her grandkids and will be saying things like, "And here's what we had for dinner on the 4th of July." And "This is a picture of my breakfast while we were vacationing in Florida." Hah!

Just to be clear here, we don't ALWAYS go to fast food hamburger joints. Just sayin...

Now I have to get ready for a meeting with the Hob Nobbers, Karen and Renee. We go through all the tags and count each members tags. Ugh! And then we get to count the money! Yay, I like THAT part!

Have a great week!

Sunday, August 21, 2016


                                  DON'T MISS THIS SALE!
                Sunday, Sept 4th 12-5, Monday, Sept 5th 9-5

It took me awhile to get this information out to ya'll but that doesn't mean we don't have LOTS of wonderful and amazing treasures for you. Life kind of got in the way of getting the details out. It's just been a busy summer! 

Here are a few fun things we've found for you:

                                    We'll also have Fall Decor and Vintage Christmas Decor and lots lots more!!! Remember: New items added on second day!

                                                         HOB NOBBER GIVE-AWAY 

Every year we have a give-away of a $30 gift certificate to shop our sale. This is for those who come to our sale, of course. ; )  All you have to do is leave a comment telling us what you like best about our sales! If you haven't been to one of our sales but plan on coming this time, leave a comment and let us know that. OK ,That's all you have to do! You have until Aug. 30th to enter. Leave your comment on this post! Thanks!
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