Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Show and Tell.....

Happy Tuesday to all! I am through splashing and thrashing in deep waters and managed to wade through to that bridge I wrote about in my last post. I crossed it and am resting on the other side. Thank you for all your sweet words of encouragement.First off before I get to my post I'd like to thank you for all the kind words, support, and prayer for our family. My grandmother had two small strokes and she tested positive for meningitis. She is in isolation and being treated. She still has some other issues and the swelling on her brain has affected her speech and ability to recognize people. No one is allowed in to see her so we did not go this weekend after all. Those who were in close contact while she had fever and was contagious have to take a series of shots to prevent getting it. My immediate family and I were not with her during this time so we are in the clear. My mother, stepfather, aunts, and uncle will have to have the shots. We have no idea how someone with such an isolated lifestyle could have come in contact with it. Her doctors say she is gravely ill and at this point our prayers are for grace, mercy, and His will to be done.

I feel like I am out of things to post about so I thought I'd just have a little show and tell of my most recent flea market finds. Before I show you my shopping habits for the last few months, I'd like to tell you about a blog I recently visited. I found Counting Your Blessings through Ele at A Bit of Pink Heaven. I noticed Ele had a new banner and she said she got it over at Count Your Blessings, who has several free banners. (Some examples are peppered through this post.)
I decided to go over and have a look see and found a place I will return to again and again, not for the freebies, which by the way are awesome, but for the variety and sheer inspiration I found there. You can go to Social Graces , which is an extension of Count Your Blessings for a unique swapping experience of gifting and receiving. There are about forty or so free banners, plus some posts are peppered with links for more free banners. You can tweak them by adding your own text, etc. to customize them for your site. These are just a few that appealed to me , there are a wide variety of designs for you to choose from. Besides regular posts there are all sorts of intriguing links on both sidebars from unique shopping to well, everything but the kitchen sink! Trust me, this is one site you will not want to miss so hurry on over but be prepared to stay awhile.If you choose to use any of these, please go over and leave a thank you to this kind blogger for her wonderful generosity!

Now, on to my flea market finds. I am collecting items for a miniature garden I plan to plant in a half barrel planter out by the tree swing. CLICK ON PICTURE TO ENLARGE FOR BETTER VIEWING. This little house is really a tea light holder and was a bargain at $2.00.
A little dwarf sits on a tree swing, the tree trunk is a vase, two little blue birds are perched on the branches and two tiny pink bunnies rest at its base. He was a bit pricey but he was also a must have item at $7.50. I found a trio of nests in small, medium, and large sizes. The large and medium ones were a $1.00 each and the small one 25 cents. The one with the eggs in it is made of iron twigs. The large one will more than likely be used as a sort of gift basket as it is a of a good size and depth. The iron one I will keep and am already using. The small one will probably be used in crafting. I got some sheets of vintage wrapping paper and some rolls of silk paper ribbon.
I love the sheen of this type of ribbon and the instructions for bow making on the end of the rolls.

The bottom roll of ribbon is cloth and the label say it is for knitting or crochet. I really liked the light weight of it. These will all be used in gift wrapping. Six rolls of ribbon and six double sheets of wrapping paper were $3.00 for all.

I found a darling little doll face for $1.00. I have named her Nancy. She was in a rumpled old plastic bag and her face was quite soiled. She cleaned up quite nicely , her brilliant blue eyes shine and her darling little dimples are no longer dirty.
Right now Nancy is hanging out with a few other pretties. I really am not sure what I will do with her but for now she will oversee all the studio work. I also found a pretty birdie box and nine small glass jars with cork stoppers. The box was a bit more than I thought it was worth but I really liked it so $5.00 later it was mine. The jars were $1.00 each. I plan to use this little box as a cupboard for all the little jars, which will be filled with buttons!
I picked up a pale green silk quilted glove box with a pretty peachy pink lining ($1.50). A big mirrored silver "S" (50 cents), and a blue shoe thing~a~ma~ bob ($1.00). I couldn't resist a set of six vintage mint condition cocktail napkins and matching coasters with their dainty daisy design ($3.00 for the set) Or this sweet velvet rose appliqué for 25 cents. The shoe thing~a~ma~ bob I have plans for as a nature inspired craft project or I may do it with an Easter theme and put it up for next season. I plan to us the appliqué on a special card I making. The napkins and coasters will be handy for entertaining and the big silver "S" will be a fun touch in my studio space. The green silk box will go into my gift box bin and someone will receive a lovely gift in it someday.I also bought a bevy of bottles ($1.99 for all), a nice bunch of old ratty books (ranging from 50 cents to $1.00 each, the ledger is unwritten in), and an old BINGO game ($2.00). I liked the shape and size of these bottles. I plan to soak off the labels, decorate them a bit, then taking a cue from the cover of the latest issue of Somerset, filling them with glitter, sequins, small beads, etc. for pretty yet practical supply storage. The bottles in the current Somerset Life issue were designed by Marilyn Healey. You can visit her blog , Outside the Lines, here. I seriously have trouble tearing up books to craft with, these I will not feel bad about as they are falling apart and many pages are already missing. The top book is an old McGuffey Sixth Reader with a copyright date of 1886, the red one is a Latin lesson book, the other two smaller ones are French lesson books, and the Ledger on the bottom has a beautiful leather and suede cover. These will be used in collage work or to share with friends. The old BINGO game and pieces will be used in collage projects and a few of them went to live at Rosa's house. I also found some bits of baby items that were must haves! A sweet barely there pink dress with two teeny buttons at the shoulder and a dainty scalloped hem and sweet stitching on the front of the dress hem.


A pair of irresistible ceramic baby shoes, one a little walker with hand painted flowers and a bitsy baby perched on the toe, the other a pretty rose embellished bootie. The baby on the walker is missing one arm, I plan to glue on a few vintage velvet posies to cover the blemish and if I can figure out how, I'd like to use some crazy quilt velvet scraps I have and turn them into pin cushions. I have some mini frames I'd like to put on decorative pin heads and put my children's baby pictures in them. The little rose bootie was evidently a gift to a baby girl, on the bottom is her name and birth date. I also picked up some children's books and a pair of the sweetest little mittens! The shoes and mittens were $1.00 each and the books were 50 cents each. They are resting on more vintage wrapping paper. Here is how I have already used some of the storybook images and bits of the wrapping paper:These little cuties went to live with Lori as part of her hostess gift for hosting the Doll Challenge.

I snagged this message board for my kitchen. It was $4.00.
I plan to glue heavy duty magnets to the back and place it on the side of my refrigerator for all those little appointment cards and such. I like the fabric and the frame detail. If I decide to I can switch out the fabric or use the frame part for a mirror, very versatile.

Last but not least are some boudoirs beauties!

A hand mirror that will give your wrist a workout as it weighs about five pounds, a pretty silver powder box with a ceramic lid, a pretty little picture frame, and another powder box in pink! It has a silk outer covering with a plastic molded intricately detailed lid, and the original powder puff wit pink silk bow was tucked inside. The frame, mirror, and silver powder box were all $1.00 each and the White Shoulders powder box was $3.00.

In case you are wondering about the incredible dollar days here in flea market heaven, they were almost all from the same booth. Three bookcases of stuff had just been marked down to $1.00 each and I happened to be in the right place at the right time to cash in on the sale. These are not common prices for our area. I just know which booths have sales when and try to watch for items I might like to have or will be useful.


I have shown you all my best bargains of the past few months save the four large zip bags of buttons! I am still sorting and identifying them and they need to be photographed. I found some real gems in there and will give them their own post later on with some great button information.

I hope you are inspired to scour your area for fun finds and do show and tell!

Happy Hunting,
Miss Sandy

P.S. My handy hubby must have hit his head! He just came in for lunch, handed me some money and said, "Have fun flea marketing." Well, you don't have to tell me twice, I'd better git to gittin'. I am feeling greatly motivated for another show and tell!

Friday, April 25, 2008

Bridge Over Troubled Water.....


This morning I woke up absolutely weary. I was feeling weary in a physical sense due to illness, worry, and lack of sleep. I felt weary spiritually, emotionally, and mentally. I gathered up my gumption to get out of bed and tend to this days needs when all I really wanted to do was lay there, head under the covers and croon a snip of an old tune that says, "Make the world go away, get off of my shoulders!" The thought of the fact that both husband and daughter had climbed out of bed and gone to work, knowing they were
both weary too, gave me strength to do the same. Although I did stay under the covers for a few minutes to just pray to be able to get through the day.

You know how on some days you just think you need God with skin on, that real person who reflects Him but has an audible voice to respond to your need, so you call up a friend? Well, that was what I thought I needed. I called one of my two amigos and got her answering machine, left a brief message and then dialed the other one to get no answer. A friend could just not be found at that particular moment. I turned to my friend who sticks closer than a brother (Proverbs 18:24) and told Him my need.


As I was working around the house a song kept coming to mind. I could only remember the first part but I could hear it plain as day as if Simon and Garfunkel were in my head, one playing the piano and the other singing. I usually don't like it when a song gets stuck in there as it takes up all my thinking. But today I just listened to it over and over and over. The words washed over me like a healing soothing balm for my tired heart, body, and spirit. I went to my computer and looked up the lyrics and then over to You Tube to hear it. It was there in the secular that I met the sacred.

The song, Bridge Over Troubled Water, was written by Paul Simon in 1969.
It started as a modest Gospel hymn but became more dramatic as he put it together. He based the lyrics on a line, "I'll be your bridge over deep water if you trust in me.", by Swan Silvertones. This song was written about providing comfort to a person in need. Paul had his wife, Peggy, on his mind as he penned the lyrics. He said she was going through a trying time. This explains one mysterious line in the hymn, "Sail on Silvergirl, Sail on by", which refers to Peggy who had begun to have silver strands in her hair and was meant in jest. But, he tenderly follows that jest up with these words, "I'm sailing right behind you." , which in today's terms could be said as, "I've got your back. I'm behind you all the way. I believe in you."

Paul wrote this song for Art Garfunkel to sing. Art was reluctant and wanted Paul to sing it but finally agreed to try it. Art attempted the lead vocal on two occasions but he wasn't satisfied with the results. He went to St. Bartholomew's Church, at 109 E. 50th St., in Manhattan, two blocks from the recording
studio and sat and thought about the song. That day he nailed the lead vocal. This song went on to be a huge success and has been recorded by many other famous artists.

Take a moment to soak in these lyrics:

When you are weary, feeling small,
When tears are in your eyes, I will dry them all;
I'm on your side, when times get rough
And friends just can't be found,
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down.
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down.

When you're down and out,
When you're on the street,
When evening falls so hard

I will comfort you.
I'll take your part.
When darkness comes
And pain is all around,
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down.
Like a bridge over troubled water,
I will lay me down.

Sail on silvergirl,
Sail on by.
Your time has come to shine.
All your dreams are on their way.
See how they shine.
If you need a friend
I'm sailing right behind.

Like a bridge over troubled water
I will ease your mind.
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will ease your mind.

I truly wanted to weep at the sweetness of this song as I pictured my forever friend, Jesus, serenading me with these soothing words.photo source

This song is full of Biblical references. Jesus became that bridge as He laid down His life for us (John 3:16). "Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends..." (John 15:13-14) When we need a bridge to get across the waters of affliction Scripture says, " When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow you..." "Since you are precious in my sight...I have loved you...Fear not: for I am with you..." (Isaiah 43:1-5) He is that bridge over troubled water.

When tears are in our eyes, He will dry them all, "...and the Lord God will wipe away tears from off all faces.." (Isaiah 25:8) He deems our tears so precious that he collects them in a bottle, not one slips by unnoticed, He, "put my tears into His bottle..." (Psalm 56:8). He cares what sorrow or what joy caused them to flow.

The lyrics go on to say that when you are down and out, when darkness comes and pain is all around, I will comfort you, that is so like Jesus, it is exactly what He does. He give us light in our dark times, "For you are my lamp, O Lord, and the Lord will lighten my darkness." (2 Samuel 22:29) He also never leaves us without comfort, " I will pray to the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, (this refers to the Holy Spirit), that he may abide with you for ever." (John 14:16) "You shall...comfort me on every side." (Psalm 71:21)

You can almost feel the crescendo's climax in the final stanza of the song, Your time has come to shine, All your dreams are on the way, See how they shine. This is a picture of Isaiah 60 where Scripture begins, "Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee." This chapter of the Bible talks about the abundant access we have in Him and through His word and offers hope of great blessings after a short affliction! Because that is what our troubles here are, light and momentary, even though they do not seem so as we walk through them. We are encouraged to not lose heart even when we feel we are wasting away, but are to renew our inward being day by day by fixing our eyes upon Jesus, the unseen, for what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. (2 Corinthians 4:16-17) Focusing on Him, eases our mind.

When Art took his inability to get it right on his own to the church where he sat at the foot of the cross, fixing his attention on the meaning of the words and the act of Jesus becoming a bridge, something in him shifted. As he returned to the studio, it is quoted that he, "nailed the lead vocal." That is what we have to do too, nail those thoughts and feelings that are giving us trouble in dealing with our situation or circumstance to the cross and leave them there. Let Him bear the burden as we sail on by with Him right behind.

Maybe some of you are feeling weary too, times are rough, or pain seems to be all around, I invite you to rest in the One who has got your back, who is behind you all the way, who believes in you, who loves you so much He gave up His very life for you. Let Him carry you over the troubled water, let Him dry your tears, let Him ease your mind, and erase your fears. He will be your bridge over troubled water if you will trust in Him. I did.






Smooth Sailin',
Miss Sandy

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Update....


Dear readers, thank you so much for your care, concern, and prayers for my grandmother and our family. I wanted to pop in for a quick update. She is currently in stable condition in ICU and we are waiting for the results on tests. They think she may have had a stroke, she seems to be very confused right now and her speech is slightly slurred. Her enzyme levels are elevated indicating that her heart is in stress. She is having difficult moving her legs. She has an infection in her body and a rattle in her lungs.

She had such an ordeal the morning she was found that it is no wonder she is confused. Evidently she fell or had the stroke sometime Monday night and she lay on the floor between her sofa and coffee table all night. When she didn't answer her phone, my aunt went to check on her and found her. She was disoriented and unable to stand. An ambulance picked her up and transported her to a hospital about forty five minutes from her home. Believe it or not she was treated and released! They said they thought she had elevated blood pressure and should check with her doctor upon returning home.

Totally dismayed my aunt and uncle took her home, called her home health care nurse and her doctor, both of whom examined her and said she needed immediate hospitalization. Another ambulance was called and she was transported to a different hospital in the town where my aunt and uncle live. Their doctor examined her and determined that she needed to be in a larger facility that had a heart unit, so once again she was transported further north where she is finally receiving care.

It has been determined that she will be unable to return to living alone and the news has not been broken to her yet. The doctors said with all her health issues that she is going to need constant medical care and my mother and aunts have come to the heartbreaking decision to check into nursing homes. She has always been a very strong and independent woman and at 86 years old she is set in her ways. Please continue to pray for her and her acceptance of new living arrangements. Also, please pray for my mother and aunts as this is a very difficult decision for them to make.

Thank you for the prayer support,
Miss Sandy

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

The Wisdom Weaver.....

I'd like to share my little offering which is a tribute to my beloved grandmother, the wisdom weaver, who has the ability to weave godly wisdom into her everyday life. I give you my offering, be blessed:

The Wisdom Weaver

As a young girl she was raised in church. It was there that she fell in love with Jesus and trusted Him with her heart. She dreamed as most little girl’s do of some day marrying and having children. Two things would stand her in good stead when life got hard and her future dream of being married and having children came true, her love and trust in Jesus and the lessons she had learned well from her own beloved mother.

Lucille was a farm girl, raised in the rural South by a gentle loving mother and stern father. After her mother passed away she and her sisters helped to raise each other as best they could. Life was hard without their fun loving mother who made farm work and housework seem like play and taught them to work as unto the Lord with joy and singing.

Lucille grew up, fell in love, married, and together they set up a homestead on a small parcel of land. Life took a little twist after she married and had four children when her husband suddenly passed away. She found herself a widow living on a piece of land miles from town, without any income or any means of one, unable to drive, with four young children to provide for.

After burying her husband she sat out on her tiny porch one night with her head in her hands and wept over the fact that she felt so alone. This is where the lessons she learned from her mother and her love for and trust in Jesus stood her in good stead. She poured out her sorrows to the only one who could comfort her. She told Him all her needs, even though He already knew, and she leaned heavily upon Him in the days, weeks, months, and years to come. She taught her children to lean on Jesus and to trust Him for all their needs.

Lucille worked willingly and eagerly with her hands. She taught her children to be willing workers also but always applied her mother’s joy to the task at hand by making it seem like play or by singing as they worked. Many of the hymns she had learned as a young girl passed over her lips, as she worked she taught her children praise through song.

Much like the Proverbs 31 Woman, she got up while it was still dark in order to provide food for her family. She lit her lantern, stoking the coals in the pot belly stove, heating water for her morning coffee where she sat at the feet of Jesus every morning pouring over the pages of her well worn Bible. She read the promises and clung to them. She repeated the praises and sung them. She bowed her head in prayer and gave Him her every daily care.

She considered her fields and planted them properly with an upper field being plowed up and planted with potatoes, a lower one for the family vegetable garden, and yet another for sowing seed that would grow sweet smelling hay to feed the livestock. She saw that her trading was profitable taking potatoes from that large field and trading neighbors for things she might need or selling the extra harvest for money for the things they could not grow themselves on the farm.

She set about her work vigorously each day no matter how tired, discouraged, or scared she was. She said that each and every day Jesus strengthened her for that day’s task, whether it was chopping and hauling wood, hoeing the garden, or just keeping up with four young healthy active children.

Her lamp never went out at night as she was up late mending or seeing to the household chores. Her arms were always open to the poor and needy whether it was a neighbor or stranger. She always said that they didn’t have much but it was always enough to share. She taught her children the character qualities of generosity and kindness.

She had no fear for her household in winter weather; there were plenty of trees in the wood lot for winter fuel. Her beds were covered in thick quilts she had made from worn out clothing. Her floors were warm from the rag rugs she braided with her nimble fingers. Her children were clothed with garments she had sewn.

There came a time when she felt she could leave the farm and work in town but she had no transportation, no skills, and no prospects, so she gathered her children round her and they prayed. The next day a man from the town school came knocking on her door and said that they had a job offer for her as a cook in the cafeteria if she’d like it and a neighbor who worked in town offered to give her a ride as he passed her house everyday anyway. The lessons she taught her children were the importance of prayer and that the Lord will provide.

To this very day she is clothed in strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days come as she says they cannot be any harder than the ones that have passed. She speaks wisdom, a frequent saying being, “I don’t know what we would have done without the Lord.” Faithful instruction was always on her tongue as she raised her children and she continues to pass it along to her grand children, and great grandchildren. She watched well over the affairs of her household and to this day does not eat of the bread of idleness. Even though age has slowed her body down it has not hampered or hindered her from thumbing through the pages of her beloved Bible and praying for her family.

Many women do noble things but to me, my beloved grandmother surpasses them all. I only hope to be able to emulate her noble character and ability to weave godly wisdom into the fabric of everyday life.

Blessings,
Miss Sandy

Monday, April 21, 2008

AND THE WINNER IS.....

Hi bloggy buddies, sorry to be so late in posting the winner of my 100th post give away. It has been one crazy day! I'll forgo all the details that led up to my lateness and just announce the winner and give you a peek at the package!

AND THE WINNER IS.....ME!!!!! Oh, I bet you want to know the winner of my 100th post give away not Nancy's (Fete et Fleur)huh? Well I did win!!! My nest here at the Quill has been adequately feathered by all kinds of scrumptious goodness! Thank you Nancy I feel totally awed by your generosity and the wonderful package you sent. This is the sweet note pinned with a fabulous broach and a rose embossed post card which has a beautiful French script on the back!
Enclosed was a pretty package of ephemera!
Mmmm, a page from Romeo & Juliet, a French Dictionary page, and a page from a botanical book. An angel left her wings, Gabriel lost his trumpet, and Cupid has been drawing back his bow and pierced hearts of bronze!
Fans, French maidens, well wishes, entry tickets, and poetry pages, oh my!

Music, and frames, and more pretty poems!
Plenty of post cards and photos too!
There were birdies, butterflies, blossoms, buttons, and lady bugs too!
Thank you so much, dear sweet Nancy, my heart is full!And now for the announcement you have all been waiting for....
THE REAL WINNER IS.......#20
ROSA of Stripes and Roses Cottage!

CONGRATULATIONS ROSA! Please email me your address so I can get your package in the mail!
Rosa is a new to me blog friend. I got to know Rosa over a pair of bloomers. She was one of my swap partners in the Hanging Up Springtime Swap and I got the darling little pair of bloomers she made as part of the paper clothing. You must go and visit Rosa and her lovely family and see that latest adventure her camo clad cutie is up to. Rosa makes all kinds of pretty paper things and I love her philosophy of life: "The most important things in life ~ are not things!" Here is a peek at some of the goodies I am sending her way:





I HOPE it will INSPIRE her to CREATE! (These are some little wire words Nancy sent me!)
In case you missed it, there are some images here that you can sang and use for your own art work!

Blessings,
Miss Sandy
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