A Happy Birthday For Me

I have been at my “new” job for a year already, so decided it was time to take a bit of vacation. My birthday was last week and I thought that would be an opportune time. Bruce said he would swap his holiday time off from Monday (Memorial Day) and take Friday instead, and we could go to Billings. Then I could peruse all the antique shops to pick my own birthday present. He is a smart fella. He knew that if he could come up with something lots of fun that I couldn't say no to, chances were greatly reduced that I would ask for my usual gift of labor on his part! (Instead of asking for wrapable gifts, I always ask him to finish some project on the honey-do list.)

So I had a wonderful, leisurely week. Got some gardening done (despite lots of rain), and managed to do a little pre-Billings birthday shopping right here in town. I found this first book at the fancy-pants thrift downtown.

I love books, and was thrilled when I opened this one and saw all it had to offer.

Chapter after chapter of animals found in the wild, with each chapter culminating in a frameable print, if a person would be so inclined to cut it out of the book. All of the pictures are by the artist Francis Lee Jaques who did innumerous illustrations for the magazine Outdoor Life. In addition to the beautiful pictures, the whole book is a very interesting read. It was published in the mid 1950's.

 

This picture alone was reason enough for me to buy the book. I think it is beautiful, and would go wonderfully with my small collection of other fox pictures – that is, if I can bring myself to cut this book. My Mom raised my brother and I to respect and never disfigure or maim books. But I can see, in my minds eye, a lot of these illustrations beautifully matted and framed, hanging at the cabin!

 

 

Especially this one! With the cabin being named Moose Springs and all πŸ™‚

This second book I found at the regular thrift, and spent a whopping 75 cents for it! It is by Lawrence Sheehan whose wife Carol was the editor for the the magazine “Country Home” for many years. Her wonderful editorials were the first thing I turned to when I subscribed to that magazine, before it went under. She was like reading a favorite blog; so personable, fun, and interesting. Apparently she was a contributor to this book, and it is grand.

It has endearing photography, touching stories, and great ideas for incorporating dog inspired collections into your home.

 

 

 

I can't understand why anyone would have wanted to be rid of this book and donate it to the thrift! Oh well, their loss is my gain! It couldn't have come to a better home – I read my decorating books over and over again!

And on to our Billings trip –

This was my first find. I love how when something is just right, it practically jumps right off the shelf or wall into your arms. You can pass a thousand other things, and then, all of a sudden, there is that one something special thing that just pops out and glows! At least that's how it seems to work for me. The photo doesn't do this collector plate justice. It is a really stunning portrait of an elk, and will look perfect at the cabin.

For my turkey collection. I do not have another hen turkey looking back like this one, and at $4 for the pair I couldn't pass them up.

Another purchase for the cabin, and not only to feed my lamp fixation, but also my bear collection.

I think he is a cute little guy, and was very reasonably priced at an antique mall.

This Navajo style, 100% wool rug was a steal of a deal at a saddle shop. Now I wish I would have gotten 2, but I need to hold back a bit to see what will be truly needed when I get to finally decorate the cabin for real.

 

I was tickled to find these 2; Yellowstone Park memorabilia is getting harder and harder to find.

When we got home, my Mom and Dad came to town for cake and ice cream, and brought me some more awesome presents!

Isn't this the cutest little winter cabin! I love it!

And, what a coincidence, another plate! But this one is a true antique, and so beautiful and unique! It's funny because for Christmas my other Mother, Roxy, gave me an antique picture of a turkey herder that she found in Round Top, Texas; then my Mom finds this plate with a turkey herder! I have old pictures with sheep herders in them, but had never before heard of or seen turkey herders!

My Mom also gave me some yummy smelling lotion and lip balm, and 3 cute shirts for work. Talk about getting spoiled!

Then my bestest neighbor/friend/critter-sitter Eileen brought over this sweet garden light and hanger.

It is so pretty, and really puts out a lot of light, so I put it next to the steps in my yard to help folks not trip in the dark. She also brought me a personal birthday cupcake, and a baby tomato plant for my garden that she started from seed at her house! AND, she babysat Glee and Declan while we were in Billings since that was the first time Declan has been left for a whole day.

Pretty darn awesome birthday, wouldn't you agree?!

TTFN,

Teresa

 

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“East Meets West”

There's a new mural in town. It's very appropriately called “East Meets West”.

The City approved using a 17' x 48' side wall of the Civic Center for the mural. The mural was painted as part of the Yellowstone Asia Initiative summer art event that took place here in July. A local artist, Parks Reece, designed the mural, then he and several other artists, some local, some from China, painted the very unique and interesting story art on the building.

The Grizzly bear represents the West/Montana/USA in the painting.

The Panda bear represents East/China.

I love how wonderfully imaginative it is! There are several different animals representing both Countries; a bald eagle, a crane, a red fox, and a giant rainbow trout in the sky.

 

You can see how the Great Wall of China morphs into the Absarokee mountain range, and the sleeping giant is at the right of the mural, under the flying crane.

I'm not sure who the little guy with the yellow hat under the arrow sign is….maybe Parks. I'll have to look a lot closer next time I'm at the civic center. There are all kinds of little hidden things in the painting! Even tho it is at the back of the building, it faces the small park and bandshell where the Farmer's market is held each week in the summer. Everyone gets a nice clear view of it from there. How lucky are we?!!

TTFN,

Teresa

 

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A hickory cabinet fit for a CottageLodge

There is a big hickory cupboard in my kitchen. It is wonderful. Tons of storage, roll out shelves for big mixing bowls and other cooking utensils, and a couple of false front drawers to fill with whatever tickles your fancy – we like to keep peppermints in them presently. It also has a bunch of open shelves. I suppose most people would keep dishes, maybe jars of dried goods, that sort of thing, but I like do-dads on 'em. Lots of Lodgey eye candy. It's hard to get a good picture of the shelf contents. No matter what, there are shadows. It is one of those things best seen in person, but since most of you can't come visit me 'cept for here, I'm going to show you the pics I took even tho they are pretty ratty and shadowy looking.

 

I found out from reading the blog “An Urban Cottage”, that my kitchen is what is called a partially unfitted kitchen. When a kitchen has cupboards that can be moved around or taken with you when you move, my understanding is it's considered to be an unfitted kitchen. If you ever watch HGTV's house hunters international, it seems like lots of homes and apartments in Europe have that sort of kitchen.

We did our kitchen on a shoestring budget. We ordered good quality maple base cabinets and got them when they were having a sale, but only got the bare minimum that would be needed. I had a couple antiques cabinets that I wanted to use in the remodel, which was a bonus because new kitchen cabinetry is expensive! I knew that probably we would still not have enough storage, so when we learned about an auction a fella was having to liquidate his cabinetry building business, we were there Johnny-on-the-spot! So I bid on and won this big old hickory cabinet, paying 80% less than what he had been charging folks to place the same cabinet in their homes when his business had been in full swing. Sweet deal for my pocket book!! I like to rotate what I put on the shelves, befitting the season or Holiday.

 

Here is the whole conglomerate, in all it's lodgey-ness.

 

An old souvenir plate from Yellowstone Park, a forever calendar with fox on it, a few old miniature totem poles, an Indian basket, and fox.

 

A few duck decoys, and an old, pretty mountain pic.

 

My folks gave me this cabin for Christmas a few years ago. Dad built it, Mom furnished the inside, complete with curtains, a rug in front of the fireplace, and little furniture. It even has a light in the fireplace, so the light glows out of the little curtained windows!

 

A couple squirrels, and my favorite books on cabin style decorating.

Pretty soon it will be time to switch off and deck everything out with Holiday cheer. I'm glad I'm not a minimalist; it's so fun playing house with all these treasures I've collected over the years. Most of my things have come from rummage sales and auctions and such (which I started frequenting at about age 11 or 12), so there isn't a ton of money invested here, and I really get a lot of joy out of it. All this kind of stuff may not be for everybody, but in my case, it's good enough for who it's for πŸ˜‰

TTFN

Teresa πŸ™‚

 

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INTERMISSION

A quick break from the long winded long journey saga.

It was our wedding anniversary the other day! We made a fun day of it. There is a lot of awesome stuff to see and do in Montana if you’re willing to drive a tad bit to do it. Some of the touristy kind of stuff tends to shut down after Labor Day, so we decided to make hay while the sun was shining, and take a road trip. Mr. Bruce took a vaca day, we hopped in the truck and headed down the pike to Ennis and Virginia City.

Ennis is a cute little town, good art and antique shopping, the Madison river runs thru the town and is very popular with the fishermen. It was so busy when we were there I couldn’t get a picture of the downtown for all the traffic. I did catch these 2, a mere block off the main drag, having a nice apple snack.

 

 

We moseyed thru lots of shops, then went on to have a gourmet lunch of hot dogs and nachos at the gas station. Delish!! Onward to Virginia City –

Virginia City is a ghost town, brought back to life as a fun, touristy destination. I have been there innumerable times because 4 generations of my Mom’s family has lived and worked most of their lives in the Madison Valley. Here’s a quick picture tour.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Imagine my surprise when I saw this picture at the museum, in the ladies bathroom no less.

It is a photo of my Grandma’s grandparent’s (so my great, great grandparents) general store in Laurin, MT. We were told lots of stories about her adventures there when she was a little kid. She and my Granddad are 97 years old now. They live here, but still travel to the Madison Valley at least once a month to visit folks there.

When we got home, Mr. Bruce gave me 2 very special anniversary presents. Someday I must learn to zip my lip and not whine about cool things I see but won’t buy because I’m too cheap. Being the good hearted fella that he is, he very stealthily picks them up and surprises me with them. He probably figures he’s getting off easy, because then he doesn’t have to listen to me lament about them for a week or better πŸ™‚ .

I thought these were just perfect Cottagelodge –

Cottage

 

Better Homes and Gardens is pretty cottagey, Fishes are pretty lodgey! It’s just right!

And the second present I think is just stunning!

A giclee of a red fox! If lodgey is your cup of tea, I’m sure you agree with me.

I surely appreciate our fun anniversary road trip! Won’t be too long til the snow flies, so it was wonderful soaking up some late summer sunshine and pretty scenery.

TTFN (Ta Ta For Now)

Teresa

 

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