2/27/14

Finding My 'Inner Broochable Self'

Have you ever wondered why you are drawn to a particular item?  How it is that you can spot it when it is one in a display case of fifty or even a hundred?  Have you experienced the magic of sorting through an old jewelry box or estate sale jumble of jewelry and finding a piece that for some unknown reason speaks to you?

Until recently, I never much thought about WHY I was drawn to Brooches/Pins....I just accepted that I liked them, they were an affordable item to collect and the wearing of them full filled the 'UseIt or LoseIt' rule.  In the last six months or so I discovered my 'Inner Broochable Self' in my Mother's 1950's wooden, unhinged, scratched and nicked 'Special Things' box. 

Who knew that Brooches and Pins were holding together the 'Molecular Strands' of my DNA, and the undeniable draw to jumbles of old jewelry was in my genes.  I should have guessed it long ago...for you see, as a little girl I was always drawn to the 'Special Things' box and it's contents of 'Four Fifty's Pins'.  The 'Thelma Heart Pin' was a February Birthday Gift from her Sweetheart...my Dad.  I will share the others in a later 'Collecting Broaches' post.

The wearing of 'Brooches' dates back to the Bronze Age, and throughout history has been a chronological indicator of fashion.   Dating a vintage broach is all about the back...it's clasp, pin or hinge. 

In my 2xGreat Grandmother's Victorian era, T-bar pins/clasps were used with their longer pin extending past the body of the brooch which helped secure the pin on heavy Victorian fabrics.  The c-clasp and small hinge came into use in the late 1800's and early 1900's.

In my Mother's 1950's era, brooches were made for the modern woman with the more functional and secure 'Safety Clasp'.  Today, many brooches are multi-functional with a Pendant and Lock Latch that allows them to be worn as a necklace as well as a pin.

My latest find from a 'Jumble of Jewelry' display was made by Sarah Coventry.  It spoke to me on several levels...one, it was a 'Flower'...two, the baroque style pearl...three, the name Sarah.
It is good to know your 'Inner Broochable Self'.
 
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2/26/14

Wordless Wednesday...Edith and Margaret

Edith and Margaret
A sister can be seen as someone who is both ourselves and very much not ourselves
~a special kind of double~
Toni Morrison

2/25/14

A Post of P~Interest

 
Have you noticed this New Pinterest Widget on my Left Sidebar?
It is one of Pinterest's latest ways to promote and share your 'Pins' on your Blog or Website.
Here is how to find the 'Code' on your Pinterest Profile...
As you can see on mine...I'm still into Crocheted Shawls.
If you see one of my Crocheted Shawl Pins that you like,
you can click on the Pinterest Picture and it will link you to it on Pinterest
and the Pattern and or Origin of Pin.
I can hardly wait to check out this Shawl pattern.
I'm Particularly P~interested in the Edgings!
 

2/21/14

My Left Wildfoote

I really intended to become a Left and Right Foot Sock Knitter, I swear on my Skeins of Left-Over Skeins of Wildfoote. I should include all the 'Sock Yarns' I have purchased with the best intentions of making a 'PAIR' of Socks in that 'I Swearing'.

Now that I have fessed up to owning an over stock of sock yarn yardage and finally admitted that I am never,  ever going to knit socks in my lifetime or the shelf life time of said yarn, I am free of the guilt and embarrassment of SSS....Second Sock Syndrome.  Actually that should be First and Second Sock Syndrome, although, I have made several Onesies.  Even wore them...to bed.

This post should really be posted on 'OverstockSockScarfSweaterUnameItYarn.com'. 
Ridiculous, Sue!!!! 
Buuuuuut, I have a plan!  It's called Purge and Paybacks!
On Saturday, March 1st, I am marching right over to 'The Chicken Farm' and having an
 Egg Yarn/Fabric/Stuff Sale. 
Keep your Left Wildefoots crossed that
Texas Mother Nature doesn't Cluck Mess Things Up with a Blue Norther!

2/17/14

Matrilineal Monday...Born Under a Crescent Moon

My first thought when discovering Great Great Grand Aunt Selina Ann was, "What a beautiful and unusual name...I wonder who she was named after."  To her Matrilineal Family Trees I went....for I knew Selina was not a familiar name in her Paternal line.  After tracing back through generations of female names I found not one Selina. 
 
According to the history of female names, Selina is a common given name of Greek origin meaning 'moon'.  It can be spelled Selene, Celina and Selena...which gives rise to the more often than not misspelling of names by enumerators of early Census Records.   Selina Ann, sister of my 2xGreat Grandfather Rene Marion, was born on January 13, 1815 when the 'Moons Phase' was but a cresent sliver.  That pretty much puts to rest the notion that my 3xgreat grandparents were up on their Greek philosophy and stepped out on the porch the night Selina was born and decided to name her after a cresent moon. 
 
Fulfilling Selina's wish to be remembered by 'name' was easy compared to the telling of 'my days and my strife', for as 'Matrilineal Lines' often are...her's was short on documents and short lived.  
Read her story on Tracks of My Georgia Ancestors.
Were you born under a full moon....find out on Perpetual Moon Calendar
Selina and I were born 132 years and 7 days apart under the same sliver of a crescent moon.
We are Matrilineal Crescent Moon Beams!

2/15/14

Joy of A February Shawl

I am Re-Hooked on Crochet.  For many years, it was my Yarn Needlework of Choice.  Then I moved on to Knitting.  Then on to Needlepoint.  Then to Embroidery...and on and on.  The 'Pick one and Stick to It' mantra has never been in my phrase vocabulary.  However, I'm finding that the phrase "You always go back to your roots", applies to me not just as a Family Historian, but also as a Needleworker, as I have returned to my 'First Hooked On' craft of crochet this winter.
 
Back in the Fall of last year, I vowed to 'Use What I Had' in my yarn stash.  Believe it or not, I have 'Stuck to It', and have purchased only yarn to augment a 'Stashed Yarn Project'.  Except....ooops....a couple of 'Ribbon Yarn' skeins for special scarves at Christmas. 
 
Why Re-Hooked on Crochet?  I can answer that with two words....FASTER and FINISH!  Since last September, I have FINISHED at least 20 Scarves, 6 Shawls and crochet edged 6 more knitted projects.  Started and Finished 4 or 5 bags and seriously lowered the count of yarn skeins in my Stash. 
Yep, Crochet is the Way...at least for now!
Oh...the Joy of starting another Shawl...from the Stash!

2/6/14

Treasure Chest Thursday....Faithful Forever More

What a blessing my Grandmother Minnie must have been to her Sunday School Class and Bible Study Group.   Her devotion to Sunday School was rewarded not only in Heaven, but here on earth with the 'Crown and Cross' pin...a tangible symbol of twenty years of faith and devotion. 

The pin, the framed miniature 'Lords Supper' and Minnie's Bible are Family Heirlooms passed from Mother to Daughter.  First treasured and saved by Minnie's daughter Thelma, and now by Thelma's daughters...my sisters and me.

With these treasures comes a treasured Sunday Church story memory for me.  It was an Easter Sunday, 1950 something, and I was sitting beside Minnie, head bowed as the Offering Prayer was given.  

As 'The Plate' was being passed, Minnie pulled her hanky from her wrist where it was tucked around her narrow stretchy watch band.  From one corner of the hanky, she untied a knot and out came a small stack of coins.  She handed me a dime and a few pennies. 

The Plate was passed over me to Minnie and together we dropped our 'Hanky Savings' in the Easter Sunday Offering Plate. 

Forever more, my grandmother's knotted hanky offering comes to mind as 'The Offering Plate' is passed.  Her hanky collection still holds one hanky with a 'Knotted Coin Corner'.
Bible Study Ladies in 1957
Minnie in center with Bible tucked under her arm...
....knotted hanky tucked in her watch band....
Faithful Forever More!

2/3/14

Scrapbook Photo TAPE-B-Gone Restoration

Here's hoping a "Picture is worth more than a thousand words"....

When Microsoft upgraded to Windows Live Photo Gallery, so did I.  I switched from the software that came with my camera to downloading photos directly to Windows Live Photo Gallery.  I do much of the cropping, enhancing and improving photo quality there.  The 'RETOUCH' feature is a Mini Photo Shop where imperfections, marks and blemishes can be blurred or even removed.  When I need to do more than what I can do in the Photo Gallery, I OPEN the photo in PAINT...a right click option.

I have used Windows Paint since I first started on the computer.  With every upgrade, Microsoft has improved Paint to where it is for me today in Windows 7.   I have tried several Photo Shop programs and found them to be time consuming to learn and complicated.  It is not my intention to change my photos drastically, and if I want a 'Fad/PhotoFunia' type change, there are lots of 'Fun Photo' websites that fill that need.

Here is a SIMPLE technique to Cover/Hide larger areas that the 'RETOUCH' feature will not accommodate.  Start by....resizing the photo in the 'Gallery' to a size that fits your monitor...small or smaller works well.  OPEN the resized photo by right clicking and selecting from the drop down menu...Open with Paint.  Then you are ready to proceed to step one...all copy and paste menus are a right click on the mouse.
Once you have tried this 'Simple Restoration' technique, you will be able to tackle a little more detailed restoration that will require you to 'Toggle' back and forth between Paint and The Gallery.
Replacing larger sections of tape by 'Copy-Paste-Drag and Drop' in Paint and then SAVING it back to the photo in The Gallery allows you to go back to the 'RETOUCH' feature to blur the edges and improve the background and even lost features like the ear on the PRIN. Takes some practice, but worth it...don't you think?

The text/date and the frames were also done in Paint. 
To get the copyright symbol © in your signature or text here is the keyboard shortcut....
Hold Down the Alt key and type the number 0169. 
Now you are ready to RESTORE!
Here is how the Supt. and the Prin. looked on the finished scrapbook page.
You would think I'd be done with this page, but NOOOOO, my 'OverDoSue' kicked in when I realized I had names and dates to research.  I needed to know what happened to the Supt. and the Prin. after my mother graduated in 1943.  So on to Ancestry I went and found the PRIN. that's how I got the dates to put under his photo.  Haven't found the Supt....yet...but at least I've found the trick for removing the 71 year old Scotch Tape from the side of his head.
Rest In Restored Peace, Mr. Chisholm.

2/1/14

Sweet February~My Guardian Angel

I don't recall when, where or why I bought my first Angel Figurine.  However, I can put together a scenario of the when and where....when ever I found one that was vintage and under ten dollars.  The where, I'm sure you have already guessed, would be in thrift, junk and antique stores.

WHY?  I really never thought about it until last month when I learned about 'Kismet'.  It wasn't exactly a new word to me...just one not fully understood with no history in my world of words.
Kismet...a power that is believed to control what happens in the future.
Angels are very popular collectibles for various reasons like my 'when and where', but many collect them for their symbolism of 'Goodwill' and 'Guardianship'.  Others search out ones that represent a theme or activity like praying, skating, dancing, pets and almost anything one can think of...like my...Birthday Month Figurines.

I collected Birthday Girl Figurines for years before I added the 'Winged Ones' with the first ones for the month of January.  At first January was the only Month I was going to collect, and they didn't have to be all from a certain maker like Lefton or Enesco or whoever...they just had to have January on them.

That lasted until I would run across another Month Angel that did go with one of my January Angels.  I mean, really, why not go for a matching set of All Twelve Months. To this date, I have 13 Angels and 13 Birthday Girl Figurines.

You would think out of 26 Figurines there would be at least One Set of Matching Birthday Figurines.  Not yet...I'm still on the Treasure Hunt...but now I know the WHY!
The guardian angels of life fly so high as to be beyond our sight,
but they are always looking down upon us. ~Jean Paul Richter~
February and March Sister Angels...by Lefton #3332
 
Sweet February my Guardian Angel.
Pay attention to your dreams...
God's angels often speak directly to our hearts when we are asleep.
~The Angels' Little Instruction Book by Eileen E. Freeman~
I belive in Kismet!
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