Winter storms remind me of my beloved Beethoven.
It was autumn when we moved into our 1820s farm house in Hunters Valley in south central Pennsylvania. We had the illusion of owning half a hemisphere. We were surrounded by forests, streams, fields, and state games lands and at the time, couldn't see another house from horizon to horizon. By Christmas, a friend who owned a similar property, had convinced me that we needed a little more activity on the vacant acreage.
So on Christmas morning, I prepared two large golden packages. They were wrapped so the lids could be removed immediately for the comfort of the temporary guests inside. The backs of the boxes were completely open to prevent the tails from being crushed, and the girls positioned them so all the feathers were hidden beneath the Christmas tree. Mike’s face lit up when he opened the boxes to discover two peacocks!
It was mid-April when I heard Mike on the phone with Ruth Buck, a reporter for the local newspaper. “Well, we have at least three hundred birds,” Mike stated casually. I stopped and turned. Stunned.
I knew the collection had grown - iridescent white peacocks joined the blues, there were Bourbon Reds, Bronze and Royal Palm turkeys, Golden Pheasants, rheas, Dia Rhea and Gonna Rhea (another story- these two made NPR news!).
Today I decided to paint roses on the journal I made before giving it as a gift. The rose on the cover also has the recipient's name so I'm not going to share it because I don't want to take the chance that she might see it. She has no idea it's coming!
But I will show you the rose I painted on the first page of the journal next to the lace pocket. I love the way it turned out. It has a raised effect. I was delighted that it didn't seep through the hand made papers. The paper has such a delicate look but will be perfect for journaling, and I can be assured that pens and paints won't seep through!
Also painted and sent out a few cards today - one to a friend whose mother just passed, a get well card, a birthday card and one to send congratulations. It seems there are reasons to send them as quickly as the paint meets the paper. Roses are appropriate for so many occasions.
My violet post was the last in the series of herbs that are associated with love and romance. There are many more but Valentine's Day has come and gone it seems a good time to close.
For those of you who check in from time to time, you know I love roses I have them all over my house and recently I've been living with, and painting, white roses. But one of my favorite white roses has been around for a very long time.
Today's treasure is my great grandfather's white ivory rose autograph book from January 1, 1899. At one time the velvet cover appears to have been a bright red but it is faded from age. The softening makes it ever more beautiful. I feel that way about a lot of vintage treasures - buildings, fabrics, people . . .
This is the first page in the book.
The penmanship is exquisite. It may be difficult to read so I've included the inscription.
Mr. Albert Shuey
New Year's 1899
Albert was born on November 4, 1876 and died on January 31, 1951.He was 23 years old when he started this autograph book. I don't know who gave it to him or much more about it. I fell in love with it the first time I saw it when I was a little girl and decided to leave my autograph. I'm not proud of my contribution. It's not nearly as elegant as the rest, but I loved the book and wanted to be part of it. Years later, my grandmother laughed and told me she thought he'd want me to have it.. Maybe it's just as well that I left my mark. No one else seemed nearly as impressed with it as I was.
I have no idea what this says! I must have known at the time?
This is one of the first autographs in the book.
January 1, 1899
Leaves may wither,
Flowers may die,
Friends will forget you
But never will I.
January 1, 1899
When you get married
And your old woman gets cross
Come over to our house
And eat apple sauce.
Ever remember Dec - 29, 1898
This little book, plus some posts I'm planning to do based on a recent exhibit I visited, have inspired me to begin a new category for my blog posts - vintage. This will be the first.
There will be more from this book - there are 40 pages and I'm only including a few for now.
There are autographs from Daisy, Albert's wife (his fiancé at the time), and later from his daughter, my grandmother, and some very cynical entries from my mother. Apparently I wasn't the only family member inspired to leave comments after his death.
It's an interesting mix and gives me some insights on my family.
An Unhurried Adventure in Creative Mindfulness
I'm doing a 30 day project with Mike Dooley's Infinite Possibilities and one of our assignments was a vision board. This is my post for the Playing the Matrix group!
"My vision board. This process was a HUGE ah ha for me! I began with the dreams of traveling to exotic places, a new car, a house on the beach . . . Then I wandered into my sewing room and started to smile at my dress form. SHE would be my vision board! And my vision board turned into a celebration of having a home again after losing mine in the flood and relocating to a new town. Baltimore! I feel like I've moved to Disneyland! From the symphony to the sports teams, the bay, the university, my new home. I don't want to go ANYWHERE for awhile! I want to furnish my home, play in the garden, meet the neighbors and entertain, continue my Heart to Hand journaling . . . For years I felt displaced and was carrying my home on my back like a turtle. Now i have a home in Lake Walker which very similar to living in the 50s (many of you will be much too young to know what that means!) We have safe streets, front porches, neighbors walking dogs, a community newsletter and plant exchanges. I want to Embrace the Sacred in Every Day Treasures. It may even be a book or blog title! This vision board is filled with symbolism - the pineapple for hospitality, rosemary for remembrance - more in visualizing. LOVING this project - what a gift!!!"
"My mission is
to help others see and cherish the beauty,
romance and treasures within and around them
that are often dismissed or completely overlooked."
Do The Write Thing
Fashion And Fabrics
Lessons From Nature
Pay It Forward
Take The Rose Instead
Mikell is a writer, artist and professional treasure hunter, finding the greatest treasures in the wonderful people who enter her life!