Monday, July 4, 2022

HAPPY 4th OF JULY

 


                                        Have a wonderful July 4th with your family and friends!

Friday, June 10, 2022

THE FAMILY PREAKNESS PARTY

 Even though you're growing up, you should never stop having FUN!  Nina Dobrev


My 10 real old granddaughter, Gili, is horse crazy! She takes horse lessons, reads books about horses ( both fiction and nonfiction ), goes to horse camps, has toured Churchill Downs, goes to the local Canterbury Downs to watch horse races, has a miniature ranch with horses, and someday would like to own a horse! I was the same way!

She loves to watch the three big horse races: The Kentucky Derby, The Preakness, and The Belmont. She and her mom and dad  don't believe in betting but they enjoy making their own "picks" and watching the events. So every year they host a Kentucky Derby Party. But this year they were on vacation during the Derby so they had a Preakness Party! The whole family is invited and Gili takes care of most of the details! She provides a colored paper and a rosette where we are to write our first pick on the rosette and the second and third picks on the card stock paper. She also encourages us to use different colored rosette and card stock paper so as to see the rosette better. 

Gili and my daughter give instructions, the table is set, and we're ready to go...










           The rosettes and card stock sheets are ready to choose from and write down our picks.











Then the picks are put up on the wall in the family room next to the TV where we will watch the race. Notice how everyone followed the rules by picking contrasting colors of rosette and card stock paper? Well a couple of people came CLOSE to NOT following the rules! Can you tell which ones?  

              


                 Of course there are snacks to eat while making our picks... and dinner later! But no pictures were taken while the race was on because everyone is screaming and shouting for their horse to win! AND it's only two minutes long, give or take!



                          And the WINNER is.....Early Voting....whom NOBODY picked!  But no worries, we don't give out prizes! It's all in fun!



But WAIT! The winner DOES get first pick at the delicious homemade almond sugar cookies!! AFTER dinner of course! In this case since there was no first winner the first cookie picking goes to the second place picks or third place!

           See how we can make a family gathering an EVENT that everyone looks forward to?

                                                        MAKING MEMORIES!

Tuesday, May 17, 2022

THE GARDEN OF YOUR MIND


 

As you plant your flower or vegetable garden this Spring, consider planting seeds in your MIND! Thoughts are REAL THINGS taking up Real Estate in your mind like branches on a tree. Thoughts of love, beauty, Truth, Faith, kindness, and "good" things grow "healthy" branches while thoughts of hate, judgement, distrust, and "bad" things grow "sickly" branches. What you plant in your mind comes out in your life! Consider your thoughts for out of them grows your life.


Oh and Happy Syttende Mai to all the Norwegians out there!

Sandy

Wednesday, May 11, 2022

THE WORK OF CHARLES E GAGNON

                               Despite the forecast, live like it's Spring! Lily Pulitzer 


Charles Gagnon was an artist/sculptor. He was born in 1934 in Minneapolis, Mn. At an early age he began an interest in carving with soap, clay, wood, and even potatoes. He lived for 5 years in Florence, Italy where he studied Renaissance Sculpture. 


His work has been commissioned by corporations and people from all over the world. In 1965 he returned to Minnesota, living in Rochester. If you are from Rochester, you might be familiar with his work as he sculpted the Dove Creation in Peace Plaza and the St Francis statue with the birds at St. Mary's Campus, Mayo Clinic. He passed away in 2012. His wife opened up a Gallery of his work at their home in Rochester called the Gagnon Museum.

You can read more about his life and work  here . 

I'm sharing this because my brother, Eric,  has two pieces of his art work that he wants to sell. My brother was a painting contractor who did some work for Mr Gagnon many years ago. He ended up paying my brother with his art work. Eric is now downsizing and would like to sell these two pieces. 

One is a sculpture called,   Creation Of Woman  

Creation Of Woman

           
Signed and dated by Charles Eugene Gagnon

Sculpted in 1975







Relief "Painting" of Sculptures at the Gagnon Museum




Numbered Series 107 / 300

Beautifully matted and framed


If you would like more information about either of these two pieces, email me at lesacookman@charter.net 

Thanks for stopping by! Sandy






Monday, May 9, 2022

100 MILE GARAGE SALE FINDS

                                 The earth laughs in flowers.  🌷🌷 Ralph Waldo Emerson


Les and I went to the 100 mile garage sale on Thursday. It was a bit chilly but we survived. I even turned on the seat heaters when we jumped back into the car! And it's May! But that's Minnesota for you!

Sadly we did not find many antique or vintage treasures at garage sales. We stopped at an old antique shop that we had been to previously, found a few things and had an interesting visit with the owner. We mostly shopped at his big warehouse where prices are lower and negotiable. He mentioned that his father who started the shop is 84 and they keep the shop going so his father has something to do that keeps him busy. "It's really the thing that's keeping him alive," he said. Then we spent a bit of time in the antique shop where the prices are quite high. For example, my husband looked at a cane for $1, 560! Nope! Not buying that!



Warehouse with negotiable prices

We stopped at the Pottery Place where the Red Wing brand of stoneware, jugs, and dishes used to be made. It now houses shops, an antique mall, and restaurants. 



Giant kiln?

Time for lunch and we ate at our favorite little Scandinavian cafe, called, The Pie Plate Cafe. Just a cute little cafe tucked into the balcony and then underneath the balcony.  It makes the best homemade pies! After our lunch there was no room for pie so we took our pie to go! You can't leave here without having some pie! If you live near Red Wing, Mn or are traveling through, this is a MUST STOP!

Chicken Cranberry Salad Sandwich

Ham and Cheese only because my husband made them take off all the good stuff! LOL

Les waiting for our pie!

                                         


       Saw this little mug in the gift shop at the cafe. Nice to know I'm not the only now who does this! Anyone else?

 

Grouping of my finds!

Four of these Glassbake dishes up close


I'm guessing this is Christmas In Denmark!


Illustrations and stories about Christmas.


OK so not a big haul this time! I DID go to an Estate Sale with my daughter a couple of weeks ago and was able to pick up some fun treasures. I'll share those in another post.

But sadly, Miss Mustard Seed's garage sale was cancelled! I guess she had been selling from her garage before the event if people called and wanted to see what she had so she was running out of stuff to sell and then fell and broke her foot. What a bummer for her! So I missed out!

Oh and I dropped my cell phone while shopping which I discovered when we stopped to eat. So we had to backtrack to every place we had stopped. We left Les' cell number in case they found it. We tried calling it at every place we stopped and never heard it ringing so I was beginning to worry that either someone had taken it or my ringer was turned off! My whole life was in there! Well at least it seemed like it! 

We didn't find it that day but the next morning, the guy from the antique shop called and said they found it! Yaaaay!! But I had to take another trip out of town to get it. When I received it I had, indeed, turned the ringer off on my phone. Lesson #1: Make sure ringer is on when leaving the house! My daughter, however, went one better. She set up the phone so we could track it if it was lost! Something I had neglected to do on my phone. Seemed too complicated! Lesson #2: Don't neglect to do things just because they seem too complicated! Ask your kids to do it for you!


Thanks for stopping by!

Sandy


Saturday, May 7, 2022

HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY

 


                                            To Mother's Everywhere... Have a wonderful day!



                        Remembering my Mom in Heaven. My first "Mom's Day" without her here. Probably the only one who read ALL my blog posts and my biggest cheerleader!

                                                                       Love you, Mom!

Wednesday, April 27, 2022

THE GARDENER'S JOURNAL



Each Spring ( and sometimes in Indian Summer too ) a gardening instinct, sure as the sap rising in the trees, stirs within us. We look about and decide to tame another little bit of ground. 

From Cream Hill, Lewis Gannett, 1949.                                             


And what better way to get started than beginning a Gardener’s Journal. A gardener’s journal is a simple pleasure for all gardeners. Whether you have a very large garden in the country or you garden in pots on your balcony, a gardener’s journal is a delightful way to slow down and enjoy your garden in a whole new way.

I just purchased “The Gardener’s Journal, An Old Fashioned Keepbook” at a yard sale for 50 cents! It was in” like-new” condition as if I had just purchased it at  my local bookstore. While my plan initially was to sell it at my Spring vintage occasional sale, upon perusing it, I got caught up in the delightful pictures, quotes, and thoughts about what I might do with this pretty little book.

In it, it explains why we will receive pleasure in keeping a record of our garden. “It will”, it says, “inspire you to be more observant, so that you develop a deeper interest in your garden, so that you want to do more for it”. The book also reminds us that “gardens and gardening have also served traditionally as metaphors for earthly paradise and for the business of life itself.” It was for this last reason that I decided to keep this journal to keep notes about what I can learn from gardening. The weeding, the watering, the waiting, the sowing and reaping, the bountiful harvest, and yes, even the droughts can be metaphors for a rich new way of understanding our lives.  Luther Burbank says, “Trees, plants, and flowers are all educators in the right direction.”

My new journal is designed as an old fashioned keepsake, or “keepbook” as they call it. It has beautiful floral pictures and whimsical artwork reminiscent of an earlier era. It has pages to plot your garden so you can begin your planning and dreaming even while the snow flies in winter, thus enjoying your “gardening” days for a longer period of time. It offers pages for practical details like tools and maintenance needs as well as lovely quotes about gardening like the one below.

“One bright branch growing against the wall is grace.”      George Washington Carver

While my own living situation allows mainly for planting in pots, this little book has inspired me to keep an ongoing gardening journal for practical items but mainly for the inspirational metaphors of which they will remind me. I also plan on adding more quotes about gardening in my keepbook. Why not try this yourself? If you prefer not to purchase a new book, you can create your own by writing things down on plain paper and using graphed paper for plotting your garden design. You can add favorite quotes and even doodle your own little flowered artwork. Don’t worry about what it looks like. It is for your own simple pleasure.


Thanks for stopping by!

Sandy


Monday, January 17, 2022

CHRISTMAS KEEPS ON GOING

 I always put away Christmas decor on New Years Day. But I keep my Byer's Choice Carolers up until sometime in February. I only get to see them once a year so I feel I should keep them up at least a few months. 

They are all in the same "extended family" having names and put into family units. My granddaughters have named everyone except the newest members.



The three in the front above are new additions to the families...Mom, Dad, and a Daughter yet to be named.



I also enjoy the outdoor Christmas lights that people keep up throughout the winter! It really brightens up the neighborhood and everyone's spirits as well!

Who else is keeping some Christmas treasures up longer? 



Wednesday, January 5, 2022

TRIBUTE TO MOM AND MORE TREASURES

 In my last post I shared that my Mom passed away. But I didn't share what an amazing Mom she was and I want to do that now! Mom was my number one cheerleader! In her mind I could do no wrong! Well, most of the time anyway! Hah! She bragged about everything I ever did! And then maybe added her own little embellishments much to my embarrassment! 

Christmas with one of the great grandkids!

She was my encourager and motivated me to do more than I would have done without her encouraging me on! But to be fair there were things she was a bit more hesitant about concerning me. She wasn't sure if I really should be reaching out to kids in gangs...on the streets...sometimes by myself! But she did pray for me when I was out there! 



And that's another thing! She was our family's prayer warrior! She was in constant prayer over all her kids, grandkids, and great grandkids! And yes, she had great grandkids! She had nine while seeing three of them go to college and two graduate before she passed away. She married at a young age and that's probably why she was also young at heart! Even at age 90!

A tea party at Grandma Camp with great grandkids

She was generous with her family but should have spent money on herself. But she always said that is what made her happy! 

She was the Mom who others wanted for their Mom. A good friend of mine always said she wanted my Mom as her Mom. Not sure what her Mom would have said about that. Her Mom was a sweet lady as well. Since Mom was a young mother while I was growing up all my friends seemed to gravitate towards her. She was young, energetic, and loving! After Mom passed, a cousin told me that when she was growing up their mother told her that if she ever needed help, like a ride home from school or anything really, she should just call my Mom because my Mom would always be there for anyone who needed them. She gave my cousin our phone number and she remembered that number to this day! A number that I had even forgotten until she said it!
Mom and Dad's Wedding Day. She was 17! He was 20.

She loved sharing her faith with whoever would listen and sometimes with those who might not have wanted to listen! But if they didn't want to listen she would pray for them. 

Mom getting a boat ride in our boat. She loved the ride and the scenery!

Well I could go on and on but I'm sure many of you feel the same way about your Mom. Just had to share this! Miss you Mom!

Somewhat blizzardy out today but schools are still open so I guess it must be OK to go out! I need to get one order (two small glasses with Scotty Dogs on them) shipped today. 

Still a Give-Away coming up that I mentioned last year but was put off due to Mom becoming ill. It will be posted on our Instagram account and we will announce it here as well as soon as it gets posted. Daughter Elissa is working on that at the moment. The Give-Away is to celebrate our 1,000th sale in our Etsy Shop. 

And I'm so excited about going out and finding new treasures to list in our Etsy Shop! I'll probably keep a few for myself though! ; )

Swanky Swig juice glasses!

Sweet little wooden bowls for storing your tiny treasures!

Add to your collection!

Get your paper organized in a charming vintage way!

Thanks for stopping by!

Sandy




Tuesday, January 4, 2022

AMERICAN SWEDISH INSTITUTE FUN

 It has been a while since I've posted. Since that last post my Mom was diagnosed with cancer and  lived with us while I cared for her before she passed away. She was 90 years old and was active and mentally sharp right up until the end. After she passed away and the family gathered several times, many family members came down with Covid even though we had had the vaccines. Then of course all the details of her home, vehicle, and Estate had to be taken care of. (Yes, she lived in her own home and was driving until she got sick.) It has been a busy and difficult time for us.  So of course, Blogging was the last thing on my mind. 

                                         Here's a picture of my Mom when she was younger.

                                                And a more updated picture of my Mom and I.

But we made a decision to keep a yearly tradition. Every year at Christmas, the women and girls in our family have had a tradition of attending the Lorie Line concert. Last year because of all that happened we waited too long to get tickets to Lorie Line. My Mom had always loved getting the women in our family together for a special event at Christmas and we thought she would be happy if we kept this tradition alive. So we came up with a last minute plan to change things up and we attended the Christmas Festival at the American Swedish Institute in memory of Mom's Swedish heritage.

me with my three granddaughters
                                                 This is me with my three granddaughters.


The Swedish Institute includes a Cultural Center, Turnblad Mansion, Fikka Cafe, A Scandinavian Giftshop,  a Swedish Museum and is also an Honorary Consulate of Sweden.

The Turnblad Mansion was built by Swedish Immigrants, Swan and Christina Turnblad who hired local architects to custom design the magnificent home during the 1800s. During this time more than 54,000 Swedes immigrated to the US landing mainly in the upper MidWest. Many Swedish Immigrants were hosted in this amazing mansion upon arriving in Minnesota.

The Turnblads had not lived there long until they moved into another home and this was donated to the organization which is now the American Swedish Institute. The family left an indelible mark on the American Swedish history in Minnesota. 






This was a very fun Christmas Festival with an outdoor market and many vendors selling their handmade wares, along with touring the mansion and seeing all the Swedish Christmas decorations.The outdoor market had fire pots so we sat around the fire and ate some delicious handmade fudge we had purchased. The Fikka Cafe was open serving traditional Scandinavian dishes.

A group of people dressed in authentic Scandinavian clothing entertained us with music...



If you're Swedish or Norwegian ( or even if you're not ) this is a wonderful place to visit, especially during their Christmas Festival, though they do have activities all year long. Go here to go to the American Swedish Institute website for more information.