Weekend Wanderings

Hello, vixens!!!  How are all of you?  Are you as happy to say goodbye to summer & welcome fall as I am?!?!?!  This is truly my most wonderful time of year!!!  I am so happy to be going from seeing displays like this:

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To this:

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So we all know that over the last several years the back to school sales include many new items for fall.  I have come across several interesting ones.  I am not sure if Kellogg’s does this every year but this is the first time I noticed my favorite flavor of my favorite treat has been updated for fall:

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Or if you are a pumpkin pie fan, there is also this one:

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Isn’t the skeleton Snoopy a scream???  I promise it has two eyes, but my iPhone just did not pick it up.  As this year marks the 50th anniversary of “It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown“, I have come across a lot of Peanuts items that celebrate that milestone & the season of fall/Halloween itself, like these adorable window clings I saw in the supermarket:

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I also loved these old school Halloween decorations.  They remind me of the ones my mother hung on our door for the holiday when I was a kid:

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Have you noticed that it starts to get dark around 7:30 pm now???  Yeah!!!  The other thing I have noticed since I have been in Connecticut is that even if the temperature during the day is still in the 80’s this month, overnight the temp drops town to the 60’s or 50’s.  Wonderful sleeping weather, as they say.  Speaking of CT, I have been up here an entire year now.  It’s hard to believe but I am happy and finally getting settled.  And this time of year makes everything better, right?  🙂

Nothing herein is sponsored, just sharing my weekend finds with you.

So how was your weekend???

Until next time, fellow vixens, happy digging!!!

 

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Weekend Wanderings

Hello, Vixens!!!  Happy February!!!

It’s awards season!!!  Did I ever tell you how much I love awards shows???  I do.  I love watching the stars arrive on the red carpet, seeing the gorgeous dresses and shoes, the different hairstyles and accessories-all of it (although I must admit it is very different without Joan Rivers…sigh).  I like to see who presents with who, and if their jokes will be funny or fall flat.  I even like listening to the speeches, especially when they are off the cuff and heartfelt, and sometimes I get teary eyed during the “In Memoriam” segment.

So, after forgetting all about the Golden Globe Awards a few weeks back (I know, right???  I am sooo off my game!!!   But don’t worry, I caught the highlights on their site & YouTube LOL), I made sure I was front and center on Saturday night for the SAG (Screen Actors Guild) Awards.  My favorite part hands down was when the perfect pair of Tina Fey & Amy Poehler presented Carol Burnett with the Lifetime Achievement Award, followed very closely by when the adorable Steve Carrell escorted her to the stage.  Look how classically beautiful the ladies looked:

Tina Fey Harpers  Amy  carol

Sources (l to r):  Tina Fey & Amy Poehler:  Getty.  Carol Burnett:  The Huffington Post.  

Prints were very big on the red carpet this year, worn by Naomi Watts, Julia-Louis Dreyfus, Rachel McAdams and Nicole Kidman, to name a few.  But I am usually old school when it comes to gowns and prefer more of a monochromatic look.  The women from “Mad Men“*** were three of my absolute favorites:

Christina  J Jones  Jessica

Sources (l to r):  Christina Hendricks & January Jones:  Getty.   Jessica Pare:  AP.

I really wanted “Mad Men” to win for Outstanding Performance By An Ensemble In A Drama Series for its unbelievably phenomenal final season but that honor went to Downton Abbey.  But seeing Jon Hamm again with that post “Mad Men” beard had me sa-wooning!!!

LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 30: Actor Jon Hamm attends The 22nd Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards at The Shrine Auditorium on January 30, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. 25650_013 (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Turner)

Source:  Dimitrios Kambouris via Getty Images

The awards are also how I keep up with the movies and shows most worth watching since I have been out of the loop on both lately.  It does not have anything to do with who wins but rather what I find interesting.  As for films. I really want to see “Spotlight” with another “Mad Men alumni, John Slattery, “Room” and “The Danish Girl“.  For series, I am dying to see “Transparent” with Best Actor In A Comedy winner Jeffrey Tambor whom I have LOVED since I saw him decades ago with Al Pacino in “And Justice For All“*** and in “Hill Street Blues“*** as a dress wearing judge.  Wow, I guess his career has come full circle!!!  But I want to binge watch it, along with “Orange Is The New Black“, “Downton Abbey” and “How to Get Away With Murder“.

Here are some other dresses I loved from the awards show.  I adored the color of Viola Davis’ dress!!!

Helen  Sofia  Viola

Source (l to r):  Helen Mirren, Sofia Vergara & Viola Davis:  Getty.  

Amanda  Emerald  Sophie

Source (l to r):  Amanda Peet, Uzo Aduba and Sophie Turner:  Getty.  

I also think it is time for me to put this out there:  I am a pioneer in binge watching.  That’s right, before it was a thing, I was doing it.  And I am pretty proud of it!!!  It started a long time ago when I was a kid and was bored one Saturday morning watching cartoons (I loved the Peanuts and Fred Rogers.  No cartoons could stand up to those two powerhouses for me).  I turned the channel to PBS and three episodes of “Sesame Street” were on, followed by three episodes of  “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood”.  I was amazed!!!  I thought I was controlling it too, because when the first episode was coming to an end, I wished another one would come on even though that had never happened before. But poof, my wish came true!!!  It was fantastic!!!

Mister Rogers'

Original source:  PBS

Many years later, I started recording my soap opera (I still miss my friends from Bay City) to watch after school and/or work and when I could not watch a Monday episode one week, I decided to wait until Sunday to watch the whole week of them in a row.  All that serial goodness in one sitting AND I was able to fast forward through the commercials!!!  It was life altering!!!  After that, unless it was a sweeps month and I could not bear to wait an entire week for an update, I binged them all the time.  Same thing with my nightly shows if time and tape allowed.  And the rest, as they say, is history.  So all the newbies jumping on the binge-watching band wagon are just a tad late to the party as far as I am concerned!!!  LOL

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Original source:  NBC

But the joke’s on me because I should have been the one to invent Hulu and the likes which helped introduce “binge watching” into the vernacular.  Ugh, I’m a blockhead!!!

So, that was the highlight of my weekend.  How was yours?  Did any of you watch the SAG Awards?  Are there any movies or series you want to see or would recommend?

Until next time, fellow Vixens, happy digging!!!

Note:  The starred links*** are my affiliate links. I only share what I love and am grateful for the support.  Thanks!!!

Weekend Wanderings

Hello, Vixens!!!  How are all of you, especially those on the east coast with Winter Storm Jonas’ wrath behind-er, around you?  How did you spend your time snowed in?  Cuddling under a toasty blanket with you favorite book, person or pooch?  Or cooking big pots of stew and soup?  Or just catching up on sleep?  Whatever you did, I hope you and yours were safe and warm.

Peanuts snow day

Original Source:  Charles M. Schulz

Saturday brought us remnants of the storm and I reveled in the beauty of my first snow storm as a CT resident!!!  The snow did not start here until around noon and in total I think we received somewhere between 3-5 inches.  It was a little hard to tell for sure with the wind drifts.  Here is a picture I shared on Instagram about two hours in:

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I have trouble parting with my Christmas tree every year, especially when it still looks so healthy and green.  So instead of throwing it into the recyclable bin, I put it outside my front door after Little Christmas, or the Feast of the Epiphany.  It seemed to thrive despite the bitterly cold weather of late and the snow:

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I think I am going to use the shortening tin again next year to hold my tree.  I really like the way it looks.  I usually use a crock to hold it, but since this tin was bigger, I was able to get a larger tree.  What do you think?

As much as I should have spent my time inside unpacking my “Hoarders“-like apartment, I did the next two best things:  caught up on sleep and scoured the Internet for decorating inspiration.  I have a small wall in the bedroom part of my studio that I think would be perfect for a faux fireplace.  I got the inspiration from Kathleen at Faded Charm, who was kind enough to let me share two of her pictures with all of you:

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Courtesy of Faded Charm

Isn’t everything you see in the room simply stunning???  I really adore her style, especially how she strategically places pops of color amongst the neutral palette.  Look at the way she has displayed a chandelier on a stand:

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Courtesy of Faded Charm

I have a chandelier that I want to hang in my new apartment, but in case I cannot due to rule restrictions, I can do what Kathleen has done and add candles instead of bulbs for a gorgeous ambience.

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I just love the cut glass design on my chandelier:

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I also have a mirror that I hung over the fireplace mantel in my house.  I think it will be perfect for the faux fireplace project.  What do you think:

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So now starts the hunt for the perfect fireplace surround and mantel.  Maybe by the time I find it I will have room to use it if I can get passed my procrastinating ways.  If I don’t, the threat of a “Hoarders” episode is more real than imagined.  But then again, I would have a cleaning crew and a professional organizer to help me so it might be worth it!!!  Just kidding.  I am not really a hoarder, just an anti-proactive person who is a little lazy sometimes because daydreaming is soooo much fun!!!

Any tips for getting past my dreams and into action?

And how did you spend your weekend?

Until next time, fellow Vixens, happy digging!!!

 

Road Trip: The Carolinas

Hi Vixens!!!  I spent a week in February in the Carolinas visiting my brother and two of my cousins.  The week before I went they had weather in the mid 50’s.  I got there and realized the northeast weather followed me down south!!!  Almost every day (and night) was single digit temperatures!!!  Say it with me:  UGH!!!

Aside from the frigid weather, it was great to get away and visit with family-and do some antiquing, of course!!!

On my trip down, I stopped at the Factory Antique Mall in Verona, VA.

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I saw some great vintage items that I had as a kid like…

Barbie’s camper (I LOVED playing with this….):

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And this sweet little suitcase that screams the 70’s:

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And some Peanuts items (I still have the thermos, the other two items were after my time):

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And my favorite gum in the world (and the best comics after the Peanuts):

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This reminded me of when I would go to the beauty parlor with my mom or my grandma (so retro!!!):

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And I love to look at classic vinyl:

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There were some great items I would love to own and repurpose some day like this vintage Maytag clothes washer (look at the rust…sa-woon!!!):

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Or this Coke cooler which would make a great kitchen island or buffet:

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I would love one of these for blankets someday:

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And who does not find little shoes irresistible!!!:

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They were some great old toys, too (one of my brothers had a similar fire engine!!!):

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And there is always a creepy one……..:

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And at least one whole booth dedicated to Fiestaware:

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And a sign I LOVED but have absolutely no place for it:

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On the way home I drove right into a snow storm in Virginia:

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But thanks to the folks at the Howard Johnson’s  in Lexington, VA I had a warm place to wait out the storm.  This was the view from my room:

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The next day it was clear as a bell:

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Before I got on the road, I stopped at my favorite on-the-road place for breakfast (or any meal, for that matter):  Cracker Barrel!!!

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The hostess always sit me as close to the fire as possible without me having to ask-just one of the many reasons why I love this chain so much:

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And even though it was before noon, I indulged in the best diet root beer I ever had:

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And fell in love with an old print ad (sorry for the blurriness but the angle was bad and I did not want to bother the people at the next table):

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And ate a delicious breakfast:

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All in all, it was a great trip as usual!!!

Until next time, fellow Vixens, happy digging!!!

My Top 20 Christmas Songs

Music is such a special part of my life, and Christmas songs are no different.  There have been so many great versions of almost every song, it was hard to narrow it down to just 20.  But with 10 days to go before the big day, I thought I would share my list with all of you.

Each song includes a link to a YouTube video.  I do not own the rights to anything, nor am I associated with any of the channels/videos that I chose.  I just picked ones that showcased either the artists and/or the song enough to give you the best feel for the tune (in my humble opinion).

All opinions are my own.

What are some of your favorite Christmas songs?  Tell me in the comments below.

Enjoy!!!

1)  Merry Christmas Baby by Bruce Springsteen ( written by Lou Baxter and Johnny Moore).

It’s Bruce.  To say this is perfect would only be redundant.

2)  Christmas Time is Here by the Peanuts ( written by Lee Mendelson and Vince Guaraldi).

The Peanuts were my best friends when I was a kid, and today they are just as special to me.  “A Charlie Brown Christmas” is the main reason why.  If all I did for the holiday season was watch this special, my Christmas would still be perfect.

3)  White Christmas by Otis Redding (written by Irving Berlin).

Yes, I know all about the popularity of Bing Crosby’s version.  However, in my humble opinion, Redding brings such a stunning soulful element to his version of this song I really cannot listen to any other one. And if it was good enough for the “Love Actually” soundtrack, it is good enough for me.

4)  Winter Wonderland by Ray Charles (written by Felix Bernard).

Charles’ take on this is as unique and gorgeous as his version of “America The Beautiful”.  Truly a holiday gem.

5)  Holly Jolly Christmas by Burl Ives (written by Johnny Marks).

Who does not want a singing snowman???  Burl Ives is one of the reasons why I still tune in to watch “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer” even now.

6)  Christmas (Baby Please Come Home) by Darlene Love (written by Phil Spector, Ellie Greenwich & Jeff Barry).

Love has performed this song on Letterman’s show since 1993.  You have to watch both the studio version and the live version to truly appreciate this song and Love’s voice.

http://youtu.be/4EvZOXEoJ84 (studio version)

http://youtu.be/m7M6wRPuD2w (2013 Letterman performance)

7)  Hark! The Herald Angels Sing (written by Charles Wesley).

Between the Peanuts characters singing it at the end of “A Charlie Brown Christmas” and it being the song that celebrated George Bailey’s worth in “It’s A Wonderful Life”, it is impossible for me to hear any version of this song and not get verklempt.  A multitude of singers have covered this song but Martina McBride, Neil Diamond & Frank Sinatra’s versions are among my favorites.

8)  Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas by Judy Garland (written by Hugh Martin & Ralph Blane).

Tony Bennett called Garland the greatest singer he ever heard.  I am in no position to argue with a man of his talent and taste.

9)  Blue Christmas by Elvis Presley (written by Billy Hayes and Jay W. Johnson).

It’s ELVIS!!!

10)  O Come All Ye Faithful by Nat King Cole (written by John Francis Wade).

Most people associate him with the most famous version of “The Christmas Song”, but it is this Christmas classic that I love the most of Cole’s holiday recordings.

11)  The Christmas Song by Tony Bennett (written by Mel Torme & Robert Wells).

Tony Bennett is a legend.  If you do not have any of his music in your collection, you are doing yourself a disservice.

12)  It’s a Marshmallow World by Dean Martin (written in 1949 by Carl Sigman and Peter DeRose).

I think Frank Sinatra would even agree that Martin was probably the coolest member of the Rat Pack.

13)  Celebrate Me Home by Kenny Loggins (written by Bob James and Kenny Loggins).

Not a cover of a Christmas classic, but a song of Loggins’ very own is now a holiday staple.

14)  What Christmas Means To Me by Stevie Wonder (written by Anna Gordy Gaye (yes, Marvin Gaye’s first wife) & George Gordy).

Another original Christmas tune that has become a staple of the holiday.  And who can forget Will Ferrell’s “Elf” jumping on the mattresses with his little brother while this song was playing?

15)  Silver Bells by Rosemary Clooney & Bing Crosby (written by Jay Livingston & Ray Evans).

Before her nephew George was probably even born, Rosemary Clooney was Hollywood’s “it” girl.  Anything she sang was perfection and pairing her voice with Bing Crosby’s turned a song into a spectacular event.

16)  Happy Christmas (War is Over) by John Lennon (written by John Lennon & Yoko Ono).

From the man who told us “love is the answer”, peace was the gift he wanted for the world, and not just at Christmas.

17)  The Most Wonderful Time of the Year by Andy Williams (written by Eddie Pola and George Wyle).

I’ll admit this song now reminds me of back to school shopping thanks to a fabulous campaign several years ago by Staples, but it is a holiday classic nonetheless.

18)  The Little Drummer Boy/Peace On Earth by Bing Crosby & David Bowie (Drummer Boy written by Harry Simeone, Henry Onorati & Katherine Kennicott Davis, and the Peace on Earth music & lyrics written by Ian Fraser, Larry Grossman and Alan Kohan expressly for the recording by Crosby and Bowie).

In theory this was an odd pairing, but in principle their voices worked so well together it is hard to imagine this season without this song.  But I still wonder what would have happened if Bowie had shown up at Crosby’s house dressed as Ziggy Stardust???  (LOL)

19) O Holy Night by Eric Cartman (written by Adolphe-Charles Adam).

South Park is one of my all time favorite shows, and this clip illustrates just one of the reasons why.  Any reverence I had for this song is gone thanks to Trey Parker and Matt Stone, but I would not have it any other way!!!

20)  Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer by Elmo and Patsy (written by Randy Brooks).

This brings back memories of me and my cousins signing this song to my grandmother, who I miss everyday, not just at Christmas.  But this makes me feel a little closer to her.

Welcome Fall!!!

“Autumn…..the year’s last loveliest smile”-William Cullen Bryant.

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How do I love fall?  Let me count the ways:  Pumpkins, falling leaves in beautiful hues, crisp air, Halloween, comfort food, my yearly trek to Vermont, cozy sweaters, warm blankets, the first frost, “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown”, apple picking, gourds, weekend getaways to New England, snuggling weather, warm cider, fairs & festivals, mums, pansies, acorns, pepperberries and Thanksgiving, just to name a few.

“Life starts all over again when it gets crisp in the fall”-F. Scott Fitzgerald.

Oh, and let’s not forget antiquing, estate sale-ing and junking!!!

Happy Autumn, fellow vixens!!!

Shopping On Ebay

Even when I cannot make it to local estate and garage sales, I am always on the look out for vintage items.  One of my favorite ways to find them?  I sign in to Ebay.  I used to be completely against online shopping for vintage pieces, but then I saw that heart tugging ebay commercial about the man who finds the toy he lost as a child decades earlier (if you have never seen that ad, you MUST!!!  Check it out here:  http://youtu.be/E0x9punvi9o).

In the last month, I made two great finds.  The first one is a Peanuts Christmas pot holder (yes, I shop for Christmas & other holiday items year round, especially ones featuring my buddies, the Peanuts!!!).  Plus the holidays are right around the corner so I like to get a jump on things.

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The other is an old match dispenser which has a wonderful patina.  I plan to hang it right by my front door as a holder for my sunglasses and my keys.

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This was an item I never would have searched for, but Ebay keeps track of what items you look at and buy, then they send you periodic emails for similar items or ones they think you might be interested in.  That is how I found the match holder.

So until next time fellow vixens, happy digging!!!