Tuesday, November 18, 2014


I don't go out of town a  lot when picking ( hunting for treasures). I stay pretty close to home. But occasionally I'll decide to take a trip to the Twin Cities for a bigger selection. And when I do, I invite one of my granddaughters to go along. It's a fun Gramma-Granddaughter outing. We go out for lunch and have great visits in the car and they love to help me shop for treasures to sell.

A week ago Granddaughter Ashley and I took one of these day trips.  As we settled in the car I told Ashley we were like the American Pickers. We had the van. I was Mike and she was Frank. Let the adventure begin!

There was an antique shop "close-out" sale I had read about. Turned out it was in an old warehouse and the rest of the warehouse housed artists. Lucky for us, all the artists (four floors of them ) were having a big open house! Bonus!
Ashley AKA Frank

First the art...

And then we managed to find a few treasures...

Cute vintage table with two chairs

I might paint this blue. It's all wood.

Love these old stoneware milk pan bowls

Vintage stoneware pot with lid

Vintage child's chair. Think I'll paint this as well...

An old brown jug with lid

After the antiques and art, we headed over to Leeann Chinns for some Chinese. Ashley always takes pictures of her food at restaurants for Instagram.

She did start to eat before she remembered to take this photo. Haha. But I included it anyway.

                          Great company, great food, art and antiques. What could be better?

Sunday, November 16, 2014


Ready to start the week out on a sweet note? Well, grab a cup of coffee, find a comfy chair, and let's chat...
It's Monday morning and I'm not a morning person. But I am a Monday person! Wanna know why? Because it's the beginning of a new week! I get to start over no matter how bad last week was! Or even if it was great, I can make this week even better  than the last! So here is my plan to make this week even better than the last one!

Yesterday I went to a funeral. OK, just hang with me, it will get better! The funeral was really a celebration for the life of a man named Dave. He was the husband of Jeannie, a woman who is in a Bible Study that I lead at our church. Dave had a motto that he lived by. And everyone told how he wrote his motto on everything. Even at work in the hospital! His motto was, "Live Simply. Give Generously!" And he really lived up to that motto as testified by those that shared stories of his life! Dave was a brilliant doctor and he and Jeannie and their six children spent 2 years in Zambia where Dave served as a medical missionary. I don't have space here to tell about all the stories that were shared but he, indeed, lived up to the motto that he believed in. He lived simply and spent money on things like paying for  Zambian youth to attend college, buying and sending supplies to Zambia even after they returned home, and paying for people to travel to other countries so they could be with family. He wore ties with smiley faces on them so he could give people that he simply passed, a smile in their day. These were just a few things that he did for others. In the end he even donated his body to medical research.

 So this got me thinking...for one thing, about being more generous! But the other thing was having a life's motto! Because Dave had a motto, he was intentional about how he lived his life. He made this motto his life's focus. He lived out what he truly believed in... right up until the end. 

So I'm going to come up with a personal life motto. I believe that not only could I have a better week, but maybe even a better and more focused and intentional life! Yup! That's my plan for the week and beyond and I'm excited!

 How about you? Do you have a motto for your life? Would you like to have one? If so, I'd love to hear about it!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014


I just began selling my vintage treasures on ebay and soon I'll open my Etsy shop, Gwen and Alma's! Read about Gwen and Alma's here. I just listed some of my treasures last week and have already sold three items! In the first week! That might not seem like much to you, but I was very excited! Being very entrepreneurial, I've always wanted to be in business and my dreams came true!

Pair of vintage  Black Americana appliqued kitchen towels selling on ebay

 I also sell vintage treasures in our Hob Nobber occasional sales which I have been doing with two friends for over 10 years now. Read about them here.

I'm currently writing an ebook about how to have a successful occasional sale. But not the kind you might be thinking of...

The ebook will be out on Kindle and will be free for the first month! Stay tuned to my blog for updates on the e-book. You won't want to miss the first month it's out! Gotta love a freebie!

MONDAY MORNING JAVA    And don't miss MMJ! Juicy tidbits to give you a jumpstart to your week ahead! Grab a cup of "liquid" Java and meet me every Monday Morning for your "mental" Java! 

Linking up with Bella Rosa Antiques

Tuesday, November 11, 2014


To speak gratitude is courteous and pleasant, to enact gratitude is generous and noble, but to live gratitude is to touch heaven.                         Johannes A. Gaertner

November has arrived. It is sometimes a "forgotten month" as Halloween has passed and we think of Christmas earlier and earlier. So I try to use the whole month to focus on gratitude and getting ready to celebrate the day of gratitude, Thanksgiving.

 As much as I love Christmas and decorating for that holiday, I don't begin to get ready for Christmas until after Thanksgiving.

                                      I simply try to focus on gratitude and living Thankfully.

                                         In November, as much as I can, I try to slow down...

                                                        Appreciate all that I have...

And practice gratitude living.

Sunday, November 9, 2014



Grab a cup of coffee and join me for a little Monday morning chat...

Do you see life as an adventure, a journey, a battle, a classroom, a race, or________________ ( fill in the blank )? The metaphor you use for your life will determine  your attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors. For example, if you see life as a race you might think you have to keep running to beat others and win. If you see life as an adventure you might end up taking more risks in life. If you see life as a classroom, you might think of everything you come across as a learning experience.

 Maybe you're like Forrest Gump who said, "Life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're going to get."

So what is your metaphor for life? Without thinking about it, we have each developed a metaphor for our life that has continued to define our life from early on until the present.  Are you happy with your view of the world? Would you like to be more optimistic and happier? More adventurous? Maybe you need to change the metaphor for your life. It is possible to change the metaphor for your life and how you see your world.

Pick out a metaphor and think through how that will allow you to see things in a different light.But make it a good one! One that will lift you up, get you excited about life,  and help you enjoy your life more. 

 I've always thought of life as an adventure. Adventures are exciting! I like having an exciting life...good excitement, that is! Adventures are not always easy but if I can have a good attitude I can get through them. It's kind of like going on a canoe trip in the Boundary Waters, which I have done. There are difficult portages and sometimes some rain but I always had fun...because it was an adventure! Adventures also encourage risk taking as well! While I'm not a risk taker by nature, this metaphor has helped me try things I might not have tried otherwise. It has stretched me in many ways. And when unexpected things happen, I just remind myself that life is an adventure, after all. I like seeing life as an adventure! Helen Keller said, "Life is either a daring adventure, or, nothing!" If Helen Keller can see life as an adventure then I certainly should be able to!

Yes, changing your life metaphors can change your life! This week choose a metaphor for your life that helps you see your life in new ways! A metaphor that will bring more happiness, enjoyment,  a more positive attitude, excitement, or whatever it is that you want in your life!

What metaphor are you going to choose?  .

Thursday, November 6, 2014



I'm kinda slow at understanding social media so I end up just ignoring new things for a while. So it is only now that I've begun to understand  Bloglovin'. Well, the circles thing is still a mystery! But I have discovered that I'm now following almost 2,000 blogs!!Is anyone else following that many? No wonder there are so many posts that it says I haven't read! I'm getting further and further behind every day! This started stressing me out so I decided I better check out the little section that says I can edit the blogs that I'm reading! I didn't even know it was there!

So I started going through the blogs I was "following" er, had signed up to follow anyway. And guess what? Tons of the blogs stopped posting back in 2011 or 2012!!! So that let me off the hook a bit and I didn't feel guilty about "unfollowing" them. Whew! The numbers of blogs that I had signed up to follow was going down along with my stress. But wait! Now when I clicked on to see if a blog was still active, Bloglovin pops in with a couple of more blogs that "I might want to follow". And I DID! They looked really cool!! Then I wasn't sure if I was getting ahead in eliminating the number of blogs I was following or adding more than I was deleting!! More stress! OK, I thought, I've got to get a handle on this and "be intentional" about what I'm signing up for here.

So I'm now going through the rest of the 2,000 blogs and more ( including the ones that Bloglovin thinks I might like ) and trying to decide what blogs to follow! I know... this is a first world problem. So I'm now putting it in perspective and not letting it "get to me".

 But I'm curious. How many blogs do YOU follow? How do you choose which blogs to follow? How often do you comment on others' blogs?

And if reading blog posts isn't enough, I'm following friends and family on Facebook, and my grandkids who post on Twitter and Instagram!! Tumbler keeps sending me new photos and I haven't even read today's e-mails! And people keep asking me to add their profile to my LinkedIn account. I don't even know why I have a LinkedIn account! I am not even working! I just didn't want to feel like I was rejecting people by saying "no" to their requests.

Sometimes you just have to unplug and have some fun! We had a great time with our kids and grandkids at Disney World in October!

Monday, November 3, 2014


So here's the scoop on the Etsy shop, Gwen and Alma's. I just heard that shop owners on Etsy are becoming unhappy with some recent changes that Etsy is making. After reading several of the forums on Etsy and seeing what complaints that the shop owners are having, I've decided to put my Etsy shop on hold. If the changes continue to be a problem I'll have to consider whether I want to open a shop on Etsy.

Had to have this fun blue notepad with my shop name on it! Excuse the spots of light...

But no worries! I have an ebay "membership" and I've been successful selling on ebay. Soooo, for now I'm listing my vintage treasures on ebay. Actually my husband first opened the membership there so our user name is not Gwen and Alma's. Go here to learn about the shop name.But I'm still going to think of my online sales ( where ever they are posted ) as being from Gwen and Alma's. I've already had some business cards made for that name and I love the name! I may even open a shop on my own website later. But until then it's ebay...

yeah, my cards say Etsy but oh well, maybe later

I still have to post a lot more items but you can see what is already posted by going here: ebay : advanced search : specific seller. Then put the following "member ID" in the blank: cookieman1017. My husband's nickname was cookie, thus cookieman...

Right now I'm having what I call a "soft opening" until I get more treasures listed for sale. Then I will have a BIG GRAND OPENING with a Give-Away!! But WOW I've already had lots of people viewing so that's even awesome! So hop on over and check out my treasures!
Think, "Gwen and Alma's" even though you won't see the name yet. I'm still trying to figure out...Etsy or Ebay....What would YOU do?

Sunday, November 2, 2014


                             You are today where your thoughts have brought you; you will be tomorrow where your thoughts take you. You cannot escape the results of your thoughts...
                                                                                                                             ___James Allen

Science is now discovering what others have only surmised long ago. You become what you think about on a daily basis. The above quote by James Allen was written in the early 1900's.  And yet science is now discovering the truth of this statement.

So where have your thoughts brought you? More importantly where do you want to be tomorrow? What do you want to attract into your life? Start being intentional about your thoughts. Think about what you're thinking about. Do your dominant thoughts reflect what you truly want in life?

Begin today to be intentional about what you're thinking about and change your thoughts if they are not matching up with what you truly want.

If you want to read more about changing your thoughts and changing your life, check out the site of Dr. Caroline Leaf here.  Read her article on toxic thoughts. Dr Leaf is an expert in the mind-body connection and speaks worldwide on the topic.

This week be intentional about "thinking happy thoughts" on a consistent basis and see what happens.

Friday, October 31, 2014


                        I hope your Halloween was a fun one!!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014


Today I worked on my Etsy store. I took pictures of the items I will be selling, then transferred the pictures from my camera to my computer. Next I added these treasures to my Etsy store which took a while because I had to fill in all the required information, the description of each item, and the shipping charges. It actually took me most of the day to get it all done. I wouldn't say it was "work", but it took a lot of time. I now have 21 items listed but the store isn't open just yet. I hope to have at least 30 items for sale when I open. And I'll then add more weekly.

Here are a few more treasures I will be listing in my Etsy Shop:

                                                          This blue rimmed spongeware bowl...

                                                     A wonderful wood berry basket...

                                                           A blue striped crock...

                                                      Two vintage  ironstone soap dishes...

                                     Wonderful Vintage Christmas tablecloth...

                                     And last but not least, this English Staffordshire Platter

                       Stay tuned for more! The shop will open sometime early November, just in time for Christmas gift shopping!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014


e-BOOK...As I have mentioned in a past post, I'm writing an eBOOK to explain how we (the Hob Nobbers) make money in occasional sales. Our occasional sales have allowed our families to take our children and grandchildren on vacations. The last one we took was to Disney World.

And while occasional sales are very popular, we have a bit of a different twist from what is usually done. I'm not going to spill the beans here. You'll just have to read it! So I'm excited to share this with you, although it is still a work in progress. So keep watching for it!

HUNTING FOR TREASURES...One of the items I look for when hunting for treasures to sell is interesting street signs. I found this coffee sign quite a while ago but am saving it to give my daughter and son-in-law when they move back from China. They are both big coffee lovers and met at a coffee shop. So this one is perfect for them.

And just recently I found this one at Junk Bonanza. It might only be interesting for someone from Rochester, my home town, but I think it's very cool. This will be for sale at our Memorial Day sale 2015. I know, that's a long way off. Just add it to your wish list for now...

Do you have any signs in your home? Or better yet, do you have any you might want to sell? I'm on the hunt for more...
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