Friday, December 23, 2011


As Christmas Day draws nigh and nigher, I am ever thankful for my Saviour, my family and my friends.  Back in Ontario, a surprised family and best friend had no idea as they thought I was arriving after Christmas!  We will gather together on Christmas, to celebrate the birth of Baby Jesus, share a wonderful turkey dinner, with homemade cranberry-orange sauce and homemade goodies; to catch up and laugh and share in the joy of simply being together.  We don't spend much money on presents, as being together is our gift.

I have to admit though, that I have already made it to Southworks Antique Mall in Cambridge, my old haunt, where I meandered about for a few hours and came upon a very very old gold tinsel, well worn and loved, and still so beautiful to me.  I also picked up some very old candle clips for my sister for her tree, she collects these, too ~ and although they will hold candles, they of course are never lit!

Tiny shoes ~ as a collector, these speak to me,
They are so sweet ~ a Winter's Dream...

These angel wings speak for themselves.....

So off now to watch the 1951 classic, "A Christmas Carol", in black and white, of course!! My sister and I will have tea and Rocky Mountain Shortbread cookies, while we enjoy the movie!  (and if anyone wants a great recipe, just ask...I will happily post it here!)

I wish each of you and your families a Merry Christmas, good health, love and happiness in the New Year and always. Be ever mindful of the true meaning of Christmas and be glad in the knowledge that a life lived for the Lord is life everlasting... oxoxoxox

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Dreaming of a White Christmas.....

Winter has arrived here in Red Deer, today being -29 with the windchill.....ho hum.....or should that be "ho ho ho"..... so I've been getting out all of my Christmas decorations, not that I have a lot right now, but everything I have I really enjoy.

For the last few years now I have been going with a silver and white theme, for a winter wonderland.  The thing I like the most about this kind of theme is that it doesn't clash with my home colour scheme...which is mostly neutrals.  I gather twigs and branches from the surrounding area and using craft paint, they are dressed in a warm cream colour and then touched with silver glitter (plus a tiny amount of antique gold, which is a combination of pewter and old gold) and placed in a large urn filled with florists foam and covered with moss.  Then I carefully place my vintage mercury glass balls, my Nicol Sayre paper mache decorations, feathery angel wings and a few silver stars and when I am happy with the results, I place a light in behind the urn to illuminate the beautiful display. 

image courtesy of country home

To me, this makes for a serene, calm refuge at the end of the coldest winters day.  I must confess, this display stays up all winter, so although it does have a Christmas theme, it's more of a winter theme, and suitable for display until the end of February when thoughts turn to spring.   So as I gather ingredients for  pecan crescents, rocky mountain shortbreads and snowballs for Christmas treats, I load my favourite Christmas CD's into the CD player and spend a relaxing day baking for those I love.  We don't spend a lot of money on presents, we focus on the birth of our Lord Jesus, spending family time together, enjoying good times and good food.  I never cease to be amazed at just how blessed I am to get along with everyone in my family, and that I look so forward to spending time with my extended family at this wonderous time of year.  Of course, the boys (my two nephews) receive presents (and always will!), but we find it much more relaxing and enjoyable when we focus on family and the true meaning of Christmas instead of being overwhelmed by the commercialism of the holidays.  Day after day, we are inundated with holiday commercials, making their point that if you don't get your wife this, of buy your husband that, you are somehow missing out on Christmas.  To our family, being together is the mainstay of the Christmas season, and celebrating the birth of Jesus.  After all, without Christ, there would be no Christmas. 

Friday, November 11, 2011

Been A While.....

Things have been a bit slow around here for going out  But after watching NATE BERKUS this morning and a whole hour of "thrifting", I'm once again inspired to check out our local thrift stores and little antique stores to see what I might be able to find.....for my next project, I think I'm going to look for a vintage loveseat or small sofa, something from the sixties with fairly clean lines, and then sew up some linen slipcovers for it.

 photo courtesy of dovesanddahlias at

I saw this one on and fell in love with would never know "what lies beneath" that beautiful linen slipcover.  So.....short post today, but at least I am feeling back in the groove and on the hunt!  Wish me luck!!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Missing Summer.....which leads me to other thoughts.....

Okay. so we are well into October and while I do love the fall, with its crisp, cool air and falling leaves crunching beneath my feet, today I am longing for a beach hear the waves lapping against the shore, the warm summer sun on my face and sand between my toes.  My favourite place in all the world is Southampton, ON.

My sister and I spent our childhood summers there, and although we no longer have our family cottage, we do return each summer to Southampton for vacation.....except for this past summer, which I missed after moving to Alberta.  Lazy days at the dog beach, sand on the cottage floor, fires at night roasting marshmallows, these are the memories of childhood that have carried forward to my adult life, times with family that I so cherish.

Why does time seem to stop in these little towns? No one seems to be in a hurry, not even the locals. When I stop to compare this way of life with living in the city, it almost makes me whince.  At first I thought I perhaps felt this way because when you are on vacation, you don't watch the clock, there is no real routine, and your time is your own.  But that is not what is is at's just their way of life.  People living in Southampton work, go to school, take their kids to baseball, soccer, and dance lessons just like city folk.  It's the small town attitude that is so very appealing. That is a mindset - less is more. We can all apply this to our lives - if we WANT to.  People may say "I could never do that!  I have this to do and that to do and after that I have to do this..." but it really is a mindset.  Why don't we try saying "no" when someone asks us to do something that we don't want to do.  Women especially, were brought up to be kind, accomodate others, give of yourself.  That is a wonderful way to be, but sometimes kindness can be taken advantage of - because you have always done it, you are expected to always do it.  Saying no once in a while is looking after yourself, and if you don't look after yourself, you can't look after anyone else.  So maybe, just maybe, this week, try saying no to something or someone, you will find it gets easier each time you do it.....and thus allows time for yourself to take a long bubble bath, have a cup of tea, or shut off the TV, light some candles and spend time talking to your will find the night goes by slower and you will enjoy it more. 


Sunday, October 9, 2011


HAPPY THANKSGIVING TO ALL OF MY FAMILY & FRIENDS.  This is my very first Thanksgiving ever that is away from that I mean Ontario, where we all gather for every holiday at my wonderful sister & brother-in-law's home so we can all be together and share amazing meals, and most importantly, enjoy being Mark and Roan and I will have a quiet family dinner, our first together, and our first in Alberta.....and though these are the days when I most miss my Dad, my sister, brother-in-law and my two beautiful nephews and other friends, I am so very thankful to have them as my loving family.  Knowing that we are so very close no matter how far apart in miles we may be is truly a blessing in my life.  I also count my blessings that Mark and I found each other and that we together now and will be together forever.

Be thankful for everyone in your life and everything you have - family, friends, good health, love and happiness - and be thoughtful to others, especially those who are not blessed with what you have.  If there were more kindness and love in this world, there would be no homeless people, no wars, no street kids and no animal shelters. This is a time to reach out to others who may be all alone on Thanksgiving, and extend an invitation to dinner, or take them a meal if they are not able to get out.....we are all so very blessed, yes - blessed - not lucky, to have so much abundance in our lives.


Wednesday, October 5, 2011

My French Day Bed...

There it was...the french day bed I had dreams about, searched for, and never given up hope of finding...sitting in the field at The Christie Antique "Feathers", the booth ran by an acquaintance of mine, Joanne Price.

The sight of it made me sigh.....but alas it was not to be mine, as I could not afford such a luxury at the time.

Thinking of it still, days later, I emailed Joanne to see if the bed was still available.  Yes!  She still had it in her possession, but had decided to keep it a while longer.  She would contact me if or when she was willing to part with it.  A few months passed and the vendor emailed me, asking if I was still interested in this beauty.  There was another vendor from Christie  interested in the bed as well, Kim Davies of Tattered & Torn, and I regretfully passed on purchasing my dream day bed. this was what I thought was the end of the story.....until I was emailing with Kim recently, and she asked me if I was interested in the day bed.  My third and final chance to take a leap and accept her willingness to hold onto it until Christmas!!  WHAT AN AWESOME OFFER!!  So....while visiting family and friends over the holidays, this is on the "must do" list!  I can't  thank Kim enough for being so generous to hang onto it for me! Such a sweet friend!

You know what it's like to head somewhere and just make a bee-line for something? Both of these lovely ladies have beautiful booths at Southworks Antique Mall in Cambridge, ON.  Yikes!!  I'm giving away my secrets here! Both vendors have such an eye for great finds and my home is filled with items I have purchased from their booths.  I have told each of them that their booths are so beautiful I could just "move right in".  I so miss spending time at this antique mall...another must do over the holidays! 

While I realize that "things" do not bring happiness to our lives, and that they are just material items, I also know that making my home not only functional,  but beautiful, adds a peaceful element to my daily life.   My french day bed will follow that mantra perfectly as I create my own "pied de terre" on the prairies. 

Hoping you each have a wonderful evening,

Gail ox 

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Baby Blogger.....

A new home.....a new city...and a new blog.

I am a prairie hippie girl who loves antiquing, flea markets and basically anything old.  Having recently moved to Red Deer, Alberta from Waterloo, Ontario,  I am finally following my dreams and opened a small antique booth at our local outdoor market.  I'm starting out slowly, but surely.

I hope you will come along with me as I scour my new surroundings for old linens that might become curtains, or a 60's sofa end that will be slip covered as something new.  Since I am totally new to blogging- having read many but too afraid to begin my own, this will be a completely strange but wonderful process for me, but I look forward to sharing  photos of repurposed items which will add shabby chic charm to our home.

Home...a place where we all seek refuge after a busy day in a sometimes unkind world.