Happy St. Patrick’s Day

Raggedy Ann

Although we’ve had a few inches of snowfall this morning, I am still excited about the thought that spring is right around the corner! Although our village St. Patrick’s Day parade was postponed until next week due to the snow, I’m sure that people will still turn out with enthusiasm as we do for every community event.

Today, I thought I’d share a bit of history with you. If you are like many people that I know, you have most likely had your own Raggedy doll sometime during your lifetime. I thought you might like to read about the story behind the beloved Raggedy Ann & Andy dolls.

Raggedy Ann The True Story

I just love the Raggedy Ann that my grandmother made for me when I was a little girl, so I decided to do a bit of research on the doll’s history. Here’s the true story about Raggedy Ann, the museum that chronicles her creator as well as her history.

As the story goes… The birthplace of the beloved Raggedy Ann was Arcola, Illinois. She has captivated our hearts for over 80 years, but very few know of her beginning. She is the creation of a gentleman named John Gruell.

Before World War 1, John’s daughter Marcella was just a preteen. She found a tattered rag doll in her
grandmother’s attic. John was somewhat of an artist, and when Marcella showed her dad the doll, he drew a face on it. He cut out a paper heart on which he wrote “I Love You,” thus the I love heart on each raggedy.

A few years later, in 1917, Marcella died an early death from a contaminated smallpox vaccination. Of course John was grief-stricken, and started writing stories about his little girl and her doll Raggedy Ann. I wonder how many little ones know that they are reading about a real life “daddy’s little girl”?

Today you can find two beautiful brick buildings in Arcola that share a wealth of Raggedy Ann memorabilia. Each year, the town celebrates two festivals featuring Raggedy. “The Raggedy Ann Festival” is held in the summer, and “A Raggedy Ann Christmas” is held during the Christmas season.

Visit the museum website here

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Gardening – Fill Your Cottage Gardens With Free Plants!

Foxglove in the Cottage Garden

I love to dream – and one of the things that I love to dream about is my cottage garden. I pull out back issues of my favorite magazines, gardening books, and seed catalogues to add to the plethora of ideas already stored in my mind’s eye. There is one small problem however. When you start shopping at the garden centers & from all of the plant catalogues, you start to see a growing trend – all of these beautiful plants add up to lots of money!

I need to be honest with you for a second. You see, I’m not really good at waiting several years to add a plant here & a plant there to my garden. I’m the kind of person who sees something beautiful, then tries to find a way to make it happen in my own garden. Sometimes the ideas work out wonderfully, and sometimes I learn a lesson from the whole process. In any case, my garden is always better because of it.

We all live such busy lives, and we do our best to have our obligations taken care of. Sometimes, despite all of our work & effort, we just don’t have the extra amount of money that it would take to have the garden of our dreams. I know that feeling personally, and that’s why I wanted to take this time to share with you some of the ideas that I have discovered for finding free plants over the years. Soon, with a little bit of creative thinking, you’ll have to start giving plants away due to lack of any more space in your garden!

I’ve posted the full article in my article bank due to length – read it here:

Gardening – Fill Your Cottage Gardens With Free Plants!

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Micro Mini Sinningias – how to grow the smallest flowering houseplant in the world!

micro mini sinningia
I love flowers! I love them even more when I can enjoy them all year! But, beautiful blooming plants that come in tiny little packages are what I love most of all!

When you grow small house plants, you don’t have to worry about the biggest problem that most people face when trying to enjoy a touch of nature indoors – space! And, if you’re like me, once you have a few plants, you’re going to be hungry for more :) When I found out that plants don’t have to be big to be beautiful, a whole new world opened up to me!

For some reason, I’ve always been infatuated with all things miniature! In kindergarten, I remember my teacher reading us a story called “The little old lady who lived in a vinegar bottle.” Although I don’t remember anything about the story itself, I can still remember dreaming about what it might be like to live in a tiny little cottage hidden somewhere among the ferns on the forest floor. And, after all these years… I’m still dreaming :)

Many years ago, my aunt gave me a tiny little egg shaped container that held a sweet little surprise inside! As I opened the top, inside sat the tiniest little plant – almost unbelievably tiny! The plant had lots of velvety green leaves, piles of little white slipper shaped blossoms, and even a bit of moss covering the soil. The most amazing thing about this gift was, from leaf tip to leaf tip, this little potted gem was only 1 1/2 inches across! This was the beginning of my love for miniature houseplants.

Introducing the – Micro Mini Sinningia

Click here to read the full article

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Brand New Site Almost Done!

Hello everyone!

Our new site is almost complete! After years of having a website online, I felt is was finally time to do some spring cleaning – and organizing :)

As you can see, I haven’t been able to post here for several days, because I’ve been really working on re-building my website.

After lots of programing, everything is nearly done! I’ve been writing online for many years now, but I haven’t had a good way to share all of my articles – while keeping things organized for my readers.

I’ve finally completed the new article database & I will be spending the next few weeks adding all of my past articles to that section. Here are just a few of the ones that I’ve already added:

Learn to Raise Magnificent Monarch Butterflies
Cake Recipes – Scrumptious Easy Layer Cake
Make your own pita bread!
A New Way to Save Using Rain Checks!
How to Safely Transplant Your Garden Plants

Check back often – as I will be adding new articles on a regular basis!

Pictured:
I’ve always loved the colors pink & green together. Here, I’ve mixed a piece of pottery ($5 at TJ Max), a small iron bunny ($4), a Waverly mustard & red toile tables runner ($6 TJ MAX) and my gathering basket.

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Happy Valentine’s Day!

I hope you have a wonderful day with those that you love!

Here in Upstate, NY, we are supposed to get another 3ft of snow – on top of the 112+ inches that we’ve gotten over the last few days. So…my family & I will be spending some “quality” time together inside (except for the shoveling & snow blowing festival that will happen sometime today – so we can make our way out of the forest if we need to :)

I wanted to share some beautiful vintage Valentine greetings with you!

I just love vintage postcards! I think that the early greeting cards are some of the most beautiful cards ever printed! They are full of beautiful colors, intricate artwork, simple innocent verses, as well as the occasional feathers, ribbon, or glitter. They speak to your heart with the letters from loved ones written across the backs, and speak to your creative side with what I like to call – “eye candy for the soul!”

My grandfather Yates kept a collection of vintage postcards (which has now been passed down to my mother), and I have decided to take up the tradition to pass along to my children as well :)

I hope you enjoy these bits of art – Happy Valentine’s Day!
Vintage Valentine's Day Postcard


vintage postcard
valentine's day card
postcard
valentine card
vintage card
vintage postcard
Valentine's Day postcard
vintage postcards

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Winter Snow in Upstate NY

Winter Snow

As you’ve probably heard all over the news, we’ve been getting more than our share of snow over the last few days here in Upstate, NY. We are VERY used to getting snow (and lots of it), but this year has been very mild with almost no snow until last week. Then… it all started coming in at once! We’ve been getting a couple ft of snow every day!

Here in the picture, you can see my husband trying plow out our country lane. My goal is to have a large tractor for this job next year :)

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