Monday, February 2, 2009
one day my friend came over with her 6 year old daughter. She walked into my home and said, "wow, you have a lot of ornaments!" I had never really looked at it that way before but I looked around and said, "Yes I do." I have accumulated so much STUFF over the years that I thought it would be neat to photograph my STUFF and maybe explain why I don't get rid of it! I don't really see it as clutter. Take for instance my cedar hope chest. My uncle Jim made all his nieces one (& I think great-nieces, etc.) But mine was one of the first. I was in junior high when I got that gift & still cherish it to this day! 17 of the above photos were gifts brought back to me from a dear,elderly friend who travels the world and keeps me in his thoughts. I have oil paintings he bought off the streets of Spain and watercolors from Italy. He has brought me back pottery from places like Turkey and dishes and other fabulous finds from Sweden and other far off places. I have an exquisite old church pew he gave me from his church when they got new ones. I have a ceramic rooster that his mother (who is gone now) painted and won an art award for. My sister Shannon made me the beautiful blue stained glass hanging. She also hand embroidered my rooster wall hanging and my sister Debbie painted me the winter scene and gave it to me as a wedding gift. The big brown trunk that I use as an end table for my sofa my sister Deb had her husband pick up from someones trash to be hauled off. She said, "Stace would love that!" and begged him to go and ask for it. He said he was so embarrassed to ask for someones trash! Deb was right, I do love it! Above is an old carving of a Mexican by my Dad and an early painting he did when he was just beginning to paint. He also made me the wooden raccoon and the wooden checker table top. I have faux turquoise beads that were my mother-in-law's mother's and a "little brown jug" that belonged to my 2nd grade school teacher. She also gave me the very,old,clear Scammon, KS bottle from my childhood hometown. I have tea cups and saucers that were my son's great grandma's from his Dad's side of the family. She passed away only 18 days before he was born. I also have a quilt that was his great-great grandmother's that I keep stored in my amoire display case. It's beautiful as you can see! My father-in-law made me the Adirondack chairs and also the tall wooden bird house. He carved out the welcome log too! My step-dad made the small bird house & he made me cry once when he presented me with the wooden sofa table he hand made for me. We were at a festival and I saw one there I admired and he made it for me for NO REASON and surprised me with it! That was during an awful time of my life and that act of kindness & love uplifted me so much! My mom bought for me the antique cow cookie jar that is identical to the one my Grandma had. It has a special story all it's own but I'll save that for another time. I have several old magazine type cookbooks that were Grandma's too. She wrote all over in them remarks about the recipes. Very cute! My Jesus sculpture was hers & the photo does not do it justice! My uncle Bob made me the stained glass angel and gave it to me for coming out to visit when my aunt died. My grandma that died a year ago gave me some very old pictures that were her mother's. Then after she died my mom passed down some of her things to me; an antique hat pin, old talcum powder bottle & old acorn perfume bottle, old eye spectacles, several pieces of fabric, and handkerchiefs, and a brilliant,red,seed bead necklace (it's too fragile to wear and starting to come apart but I can at least admire it!) I also have a print by Lois Shultz. She was a local artist that took lessons from Walt Disney himself! My older sister Debbie took lessons from her and when I was pregnant she gave me the Raggedy Ann & Andy print. Also, when I was pregnant my friend Diane (who was murdered a few years later) gave me the cute baby tea cup. I have my Grandpa's well water bucket and his old gardening tin. My Grandpa made me my first box. He inscribed a little saying in it and wrote my name. He made me a few more boxes after that and I inherited the wooden wind mill he built for my Grandma along with the dutch girl carrying water. Ironically, the other dutch couple came from my other Grandma's things. I have my mom's old spice rack. I also have a pitcher & cup set that some friends of ours brought back for me from Mexico. It was such a surprise that they would do something so nice for me and it wasn't even Christmas or my birthday! Some of my gal pals from work went together & got me the Rodeo painting. It hung in a window from a shop we had to walk by everyday & I always admired it. Then one day it was gone & they took such pleasure in me fretting over the fact that someone bought it! They kept it put up till Christmas (or my Birthday..I can't remember!)& surprised me with it. I love surprises! It does make me smile every time I pass by it! The beige vase is from a surprise going away party my former employer threw me almost 20 years ago now! It was filled with a giant flower arrangement! My dad & step-mom gave me the giant photo of the miners. My great-grandfather is one of the men. My Grandma gave me the cast iron train bank when I was born. She did that for each grand child (and great,great etc.) until she didn't remember she did that any longer. (Mine used to have silver money in it but when I was in HS our house was robbed & someone tore the bottom off my bank to steal what few coins were in there!) My favorite gift has always been my little dog. I know she is not "stuff" but I couldn't help but include her! Also, I have to tell about one of my favorite surprises. When I graduated tech school my husband surprised me with the tennis bracelet I'm wearing in the photo with Valentine. I thought he would just look at the evening as any other day and instead he gave me the diamond bracelet in front of all my classmates right before I walked on stage to get my diploma! So I bought myself the SPOILED sign. I have a lot of "stuff" if you want to call it that...but ornaments may be a more perfect word!