Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Blossom says Goodbye

Everyone wants to shine now and then - even demure little teddy bears. If you have been here before you know that my authority is very limited when the bears decide to get involved. I did not have to say anything to Blossom. The other bears had already told her that today was her day - the day she could say goodbye.

But before I hand this over to her, I would like to tell you all how much your comments have meant to me. You all are so sweet, entertaining, lively, funny, gracious and above all friendly. I have no worries whatsoever that Blossom will reside in a cheerful place.

Now the bears are already bugging me for at least two things at last count:

1. They want to know when the next giveaway will be (and right now if you please!)

2. They want to know when they can take over this blog again for more fun with the BBC (Blogging Bears Committee) And what kind of snacks can they have?

While I take some time to think on these things, I am going to let Blossom say her farewells to all of you.

Goodbye. Au revoir. Auf Wiedersehen. Näkemiin. Farvel.
До свидания. Tot siens. Slán leat. Arrivederci. Adiós.
Viso gero. La revedere. And so long!

Monday, March 29, 2010

I Tweaked a Few Things

I wonder if anyone else out there does this. I began to change one thing which begat another change and another and so on. At some point, I think you just have to say “That’s enough for now.”


What did I tweak? I have updated my available bears page with a new piece. Just one for now. Perhaps if all goes well there may be others later. Hop on by to say hello. April will love it!

3 Things about 3 Things


1 – My Giveaway

  • If and when I decide to do another giveaway this year and you have entered this one, I’ll give you an extra entry on my next one.
  • I’ve discovered some very interesting bloggers because of it.
  • I can’t believe it’s nearly over (only 2.5 more days) but it’s been great!


2 – Facebook

  • I knew some people I knew were there.
  • Some of those people told me I should be there too.
  • Now, I’m there (even though I’m still trying to figure it out).


3 – The Mail

  • Real mail can be lovely if it’s not ads or bills.
  • The good stuff takes longer to arrive when you are waiting for it.
  • When you get to know your very nice mailman, he recognizes when you’ve returned home and will come back to leave your package (when it finally arrives).

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Is this the bluebird of happiness?

Occasionally I will see a bluebird in our neighborhood, but they are pretty quickly gone. I have seen  a few birdhouses around here that may well be bluebird houses, but I don’t know for sure. For quite some time I have thought it would be wonderful if we could see bluebirds in our own yard. Maybe we would actually see them around more if we had a place nearby that they could call home.

After a bit of investigation, my husband bought me a bluebird house. He painted the post white because we had read that it was the preferred color. We tried to choose a good location in our yard where any residents of the home would be safe and we could watch from our kitchen window without intruding.


After doing a bit more reading, I learned that sometimes it takes years and years for a bluebird to nest in a particular location. One day, out of the corner of my eye, I saw a bird leave our new bluebird house. I haven’t seen him or her since and I don’t know what kind it was. It happened so fast that I did not even catch a glimpse of the color of the bird.


I told my husband about my fleeting glimpse and we ventured out to take a peek inside the house. This is what we found. Someone is building a nest - a sweet little nest for a family of three? Or four? Or more?

Look at the moss carpet and the wispy bits of fluff. It has been very carefully constructed. I am so excited. BUT is it a bluebird nest? I don’t know. Can you tell me if you know? We would be delighted if it belongs to a bluebird. In any case, someone has a nice new home for a little while.

boh3Has a bluebird of happiness come for a visit?

Friday, March 26, 2010

The Second Meander

I have one last meander from our trip to share with those of you who have aspirations of becoming organized. Not that this is surefire way to achieve that goal but it is certainly a place that makes you dream of the possibilities.

We stopped at The Container Store and I took a few photos. These stores are few and far between unless you live in an area where there happen to be a few. We do not have one in North Carolina so it’s always an interesting place to visit. While I didn’t purchase any containers, I thought you all might enjoy this mosaic of photos I took while I was there. I am always amazed at how many different configurations there are for boxes. It’s one of those places that are fun to just wander around in.


You can click on this photo to see the images in a larger size. It kind of reminds me of the chihuahua from that old Taco Bell commercial who said “I think I’ll need a bigger box.”

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

The First Meander

Would you like to join me on a brief tour? On the way to the teddy bear show, we got a whim to stop at one of only six buildings in the USA in which all the windows are Tiffany stained glass.

But first a short trip through the surrounding cemetery. We were told that many of the graves date to the Victorian era. Now I have to tell you something I learned that I didn’t know before. See this marker?

It is called a table top marker. The person is buried six feet under as usual but this marker, in the shape of a table, allowed the family to have a place to have their picnic when they came to tend the grave. I told my husband if he would do that for my marker, he could still have tea parties after I am gone.

Those Victorians liked the elaborate markers – very elaborate, as in “I’m right here!”

They also liked these iron fences for enclosing the plot. They were decorative, something you don’t see very often now.

Look at this metal tassel – it still remains. Many of the others were gone.


The building with the windows, Blandford Church dates back to colonial times - 1735. It has 15 of these Tiffany stained glass windows. This image from the Virginia State Library and Archives does not do them justice.  The windows were installed in the early 1900’s.

The windows are nothing less than amazing and the fact that they exist in tact is remarkable. I wish you could have seen them in person. No photo will do them justice. You have to see the sunlight filtering through the colors and consistencies of the glass to fully appreciate the artistry of these windows.

So that’s my nickel tour of Blandford Church and Cemetery. If you like that sort of thing and you have an opportunity to visit, it’s a worthwhile stop.

One last thing, I wish I could tell you all how much I appreciate your enthusiasm for my giveaway. If you haven’t entered yet, it’s not too late. There’s still some time. Not much, but some.

Thanks for stopping by. The bears and I enjoy your visits!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Teddies Spring Show 2010

After weeks and weeks of preparation, you would think it would last much longer, but it is over in a flash. A whirlwind. A swift “hi, how are ya?” and there you go.

But this blog gives me a chance to relive it all – right here.

Yep, those bears in my previous post were packed and ready to ride. I don’t know how they felt about the detours we took since they were anxious to see their friends, but we had decided ahead of time that we would meander to our dander as they say. (I have never figured out who the “they” is but “they” sure have a lot of axioms.) More on meandering later. Let’s get to the show.

We were able to get set up without any major catastrophes. Last year, there was a leak in the ceiling so a couple of tables had to be moved. It worked out pretty well this time. The only water around was in pitchers with ice.

tss2010_1My husband took this photo of me.  I found it on my camera.  Surprise, surprise.

Of course upon arriving, I glanced around at all the beautiful teddy bears and other animals and promptly thought to myself, “What on earth am I doing in the company of such fabulous artists?” Really, you just had to look about to see the wonderful work that these ladies are doing. (There are some talented guy artists too but they just weren’t at this show so I can get away with saying ‘ladies’.)

Among my favorites were Donna Nielsen, Jacquie Pollitt, Judy Mathis, my friends Darlene Allen, Cindy Malchoff and MaryAnn Wills - and a whole bunch of others.


These two are living the life in new places.  I hope they behave.

We were a little bit concerned at the slow beginning to the show. I started to wonder if we got the time wrong, but soon there was a flurry of activity. I know I am meant to be behind the table at these things. We would surely be bankrupt if I could go shopping for bears. I only saw about a million that I would love to have. Okay, maybe that’s an exaggeration. (Half a million?)


Be good, okay?

Now people always want to know if it was a good show. I think that question always depends on who you ask. I thought it was a pretty good show, but there were some who thought it wasn’t. Some artists had above average sales and others below. Is average ten bears? Twenty bears? Thirty bears? So I say good – some will agree and others, disagree.

And if you do any kind of shows or conventions you know what I am talking about when I say you get a chance to reconnect with your friends – and many of my friends also like teddy bears. When my bears discover a person they want to go home with, you would think they would shed a few tears over leaving, but did they look back with any trepidation about their new adventures? They most certainly did not. Every one that found a home was hopping, skipping and jumping right into new hands.

Now it’s time to turn my attention to the next big thing. And the next big thing is BIG! A whole small town in Iowa big. So big that it takes them five years to recover enough to do it again. This year - 2010 makes five years since the last one and this time, we have BIG plans to go. This teddy bear reunion is so big that I’ll have to tell you what I’ve learned about it in a future post.

Now I have got to go see what the bears are doing. I’m hearing things like “if you put it there, it will make a big hole” and “surely she won’t notice that spot” and “let’s get our stories straight”. Never a dull moment around here.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

This Blog is a Pinch Free Zone

When I was in elementary school, St. Patrick’s Day was the day you made certain you wore green. I don’t know who made up the rules but everyone knew them. You had to wear green. If you forgot, you could make do with anything you could find on the way – leaves, grass, clover. You could even make something from paper and color it green. Just as long as you had something – even if it was the teeniest tiniest bit of green, then you were deemed safe - safe from pinches. Yep, I remember those days when you got pinched if you forgot to wear green on St. Patrick’s Day.

Now those days are behind me and I wonder if there might just be a bit o’ Irish in my family. I’m not certain, but on a day like today, it seems like a lot of people want to be Irish. I like the Irish accent, but then I like most any accent. To me accents are aural postcards from places far away. And I’ve never been to Ireland but I’ve seen photos of some of its wonderfully green landscapes.

I think I’ll try to make the case for a bit o’ Irish in my family tree. Let’s see we have two Patricks, one Irvin, one Claire, and a Thomas or two. I’m fairly certain that’s not going to be enough. I’ll have to check into that some more. Right now, I’m trying to remember what I have to wear in my closet that is green. Old habits die hard.

In the meantime, I leave you with two things –

this Spring of 2007 photo of a little fellow I called Tiernan O’Kelly


   and this Irish blessing

May the road rise up to meet you.
May the wind always be at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
and rains fall soft upon your fields.
And until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of His hand.

There now, I think that’s a sufficient amount of green to declare this blog a Pinch-Free Zone.

Have a Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Where is Iris now?

Ever since the birthday party I’ve been wondering about Iris. How old is she now? What is she doing? Where does she live? What happened to the teapot lid?

Oh, you’re confused. Of course you are.

Let me back up and start at the beginning. This story will make much more sense.

Over the weekend, we went to a birthday party for a relative. It seems the birthday boy likes to go to auctions. He’s a treasure hunter. How does one know if it’s a treasure or not? I think it’s a ‘beauty is in the eye of the beholder’ kind of thing.

To some it might have been a box of junk, but not to him. Upon seeing the tattered box, he thought to himself, “that looks like something Ginger might like”.

And he was ever so right. I like a junky box that just might have a world of undiscovered/unclaimed gems. Not gems in the literal sense, of course.  So this was my surprise at the birthday party when it wasn’t even my birthday.

I first saw the tiny clothespins. They must have been for hanging out little dolly wash. See the regular sized one on the end?

Then I saw the teacups and silverware. How many tea parties have I missed, I wonder?

Then there was that little box off to the side. Now you know if it’s in its own box, someone thought it was special. It was marked “Iris’ Dollhouse Silverware”.

It’s the kind of thing that you want to open because you are curious, but you know that as soon as you do, you’ll never know that wonder of surprise again. You sort of want to linger over the possibilities.

So, I opened it and inside . . . 6 tiny teacups, 6 tiny saucers and six itty bitty spoons.

The whole collection was a teacup and silverware mishmash. When pieces are missing you know that someone played with it and had many doll and teddy bear tea parties. How do I know? I just do.

What I don’t know is where Iris is now and what happened to her doll house and if she had the best tea parties ever. I’m kind of curious what happened to the teapot lid too. It seems they are the first things to go.
Is it time for tea yet?


Saturday, March 13, 2010

Sh-h-h-h. Be very quiet.

We don’t want to wake them.

Yes, it’s us, the Blogging Bears. We’re sneaking in, just for tonight. It’s Friday night after all – well, technically it very, very early on Saturday, but that’s just nitpicking.

What really matters is that we’ve got a little window of opportunity and we’re grabbing it with all the quiet gusto we can manage.
Now seeing as how our contract has run out, we are under no obligations of any kind. That means we can blog about anything.
Anything at all.

What shall we blog about?

How about . . . that time . . .
Uh. No. The details on that are kind of fuzzy.

How about . . . the cooking story?
Which one?
Nope. We could never pick and after all, ‘flour on the floor’ is so yesterday.
You’re right it was yesterday – what a mess that was!

Hey, let’s go see what’s on the camera!

Wow! What’s this?

It looks like a really cool new age hairstyle.
I don’t think so.
What about this one?

That’s the monster that ate Tokyo. (Snicker. Snicker.)
Oh, here’s another one.
That has got to be one of those Oscar dresses. You know the ones that were on the red carpet.

What are these things anyway?!!
More bizarre things we’ll never figure out on our own, I expect. She takes some very strange photos.
Oh, I see now! Bark!
Woof! Woof!
No, I mean it’s bark - bark from a tree.
You’re right ‘cuz here’s the tree. Must have been one of those sunny days we had before it started raining.  How come we never get to go anywhere?

Let’s get back to what we’re here for.
Well, I don’t think we’re going to find something interesting to blog about.
I agree. I’m hungry anyway. Let’s go get a snack!
Yeah, for some reason I want some corn flakes!

Sh-h-h-h. Don’t tell anyone we were here. We’ll come back and try again some other time.

The BBC (Blogging Bears Committee)
sneaking in for

Thursday, March 11, 2010

What’s normal?

I’m not certain there’s a good answer for that question. It’s really all in your point of view - your perspective. Walking by my desk, you might see a head with no body, a few torso-less limbs, a one-legged creature or a headless body. For some, it might be a reminder of that well known tale, The Legend of Sleepy Hollow with the headless horseman. To me, they are just little bears waiting for the next step.


He didn’t stay this way for long, I promise.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

The Rabken Egg Results

Taking up the conversation from my last post, I promised to share photos of my rabken egg project. The egg is about six inches tall so I had a task ahead of me.

If you remember from yesterday, the eggs a rabken leaves as gifts are hollow. I began by drawing an oval on one side.


Then I cut an opening in the rabken egg.

A bit of primer was next.


Some pink paint since Spring is nearly here.


Tinsel, must have some tinsel . . .
and some Dresden trim too – in silver.


      Had to break out the glitter. Who knows what would happen if I walked around without glitter glistening from somewhere on my face!


    Added some flowers here . . .


and there. Added a banner too.


    But it’s missing something. What is it missing?


    Oh, I know, it needs a little Spring bunny.


    Like this one:


A bunny home! There now, the rabken should be very happy.

Maybe, if I keep the garden untended, she’ll leave me another egg. (Not a problem!)  I think this bunny needs a condo for a friend. Oh that’s right, I already have another egg. Hm-m-m-m. Guess I better get busy!

It’s rabken season!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

My Weekend – A Tall Tale

Where I live in the southern part of the USA, there are some amazing animals. They are the stuff of legend. There is one that kind of looks like a cross between a rabbit and a chicken. It’s is called a Rabken. I have never been quick enough to capture one in a photo though. You’ll just have to take my word for it.

They are definitely animals of nature, not to be tamed. They like the freedom of visiting wherever they choose. Their favorite places are natural areas; those untended spots of twigs, leaves and sometimes weeds.

If you get lucky and a rabken likes your garden, the neglected parts, they will leave you a gift of one of their hollow eggs. Not all their eggs are hollow, of course, only some. They leave them because they feel they are full of hidden potential and they like to share.

So, over the weekend, can you believe it??!! We were visited by a rabken. I never did see her. I think she must have come in the early, early morning, but she left us a gift of not one, but two eggs. Those things are huge as eggs go.

I did have my camera and I thought you might like to see a rabken egg in the twig nest.

Now, if you touch a rabken egg, it is understood that your obligation is not to let it sit around until Easter arrives. You should either make something from it or give it to someone who will. I decided to make something.

I’ll post the photos of my efforts tomorrow.

Thanks for stopping by!

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