Old Valentines Memories

Art by Marion Rose

These vintage Valentines sure take me back. How I loved it when my mom came home from the store with that February purchase: a thin box filled with a vast variety of silly cards. Images of a billy goat, a choo-choo train, a steaming kettle… which one would I give to whom?

The first few favorites were easy to pull out and name for my closest classmates. Plus one for teacher. One for my mom and one for my dad. Then I’d resort to simply copying names from the class list to the remaining cards, occasionally worrying an odd kid I avoided might get the wrong idea when getting a card from me saying I’d ‘choo-choo-chose you’!

Ah, childhood. The things I worried about then. How I miss those simple things now. So here is today’s nostalgic trip down memory lane, brought to you by this snowy, housebound camper! Cheers



Easy Easter Decor Ideas

I’m having the whole family over for a big dinner on Sunday evening and I’m so excited! To encourage those who are having people over this weekend, here’s some lovely decor ideas from creative people everywhere. It can be something quick and easy to show your Easter spirit.

Icebound Fairies

Art by Ken Meyer Jr.
Art by Ken Meyer Jr.

And the shoveling continues. Okay folks, this is getting ridiculous. A few days ago I mentioned being a bit snowbound. But now? Check out these icicles contributing to my feelings of being icebound. Because there’s no danger to people, pets, or the house, we’re leaving them be and watching them grow. They’ve formed into a length of bars across our livingroom window! The ongoing delay of spring combined with relentlessly falling snow viewed beyond this jail-like view of icicles are all extremely challenging to maintaining my cheerfulness!

Icicles on the roofWhen the sun is out, these 3- and 4-foot swords of ice shine like light-sabers. The effect fills the house with light. Awesome! But today it’s just grey and snowing. A lot. Four more inches. Ten centimeters on top of what was still here.

Yes, snow is pretty as it’s falling but… oh to be gardening. The joy of being out there working in the soil, pulling back the winterkill, adding amendments, discovering delightful tips of bulbs and early perennials. Ah, soon! But not for a little while longer. For now I turn my love of plants towards the indoor ones. I’m delighted with my choice of three small plants to fill this old container we had kicking around. It used to hold one of my husband’s bonsai at work, but the plant unfortunately didn’t survive a vacation and the pot has been waiting for a new resident or two. I ended up finding three mini-plants: Amiens’ Crassula Hobbit, Fine Gold-Leaf Sedum, and Violet’s Creeping Thyme.

Icicles on the roofPrior to this whimsical garden, inspired by an old bonsai pot, I hadn’t been interested in the ‘fairy garden’ bandwagon because I don’t tend to enjoy hobbies that generate the purchasing and collecting of ‘things’. However I admit I did purchase one little bench. When I got home with my 3 mini-plants in their 2-inch pots, a small bag of soil, and the tiny bench, I eagerly got it all into its new home. So cute! I made room for my mini-garden on the window shelf above my desk.

I have never grown a terrarium before but I’m beginning to be curious about them. I’ve already been enamored for years about trough gardening with alpines and using small hardy succulents in dry, sunny spaces. My recent investigation into miniature gardens has bloomed into an enchantment with the idea of having a tiny door hidden here, a small pathway there. I’ve been delighted to discover many enthusiasts making their own faerie furniture and tiny houses, and showing the rest of us how to do it! I discussed this new diversion with my husband and showed images I’ve collected on Pinterest. He especially liked the idea of a hidden entrance. Something not so obvious as, say, a bright red faerie door. I agreed and this spring I’ll be building a small, somewhat disguised bark-like door to rest at the base of one of our large trees.

Such a fun idea! I look forward to placing some diminutive treasures such as these where they can be viewed from certain vantage points in the garden. I’ll see how the ideas evolve, and will share photos later this summer. But for now, I hope you’ll enjoy with me this collection of clever ideas, showing us how it’s done. May we all be inspired by these whimsical wonders.

Such a lovely, handmade twig fence and arbor! The bark-roofed stone faerie house in the second-last image is made using a big plastic bottle. See the detailed step-by-step how-to post at inhabitat.com. And for another excellent DIY tutorial on the lovely twig house in the first image, visit thejuise.blogspot.ca. For more images like these see my Pinterest board here.