Monday, July 25, 2011

Lots of new Prim Goodies

I follow the blog -  and Wanda has the coolest, best prim stuff!  
I purchased this brown twiggy fall tree from her, looks perfect on my dry sink with an antique basket.
This pumpkin was the main purchase.  I LOVE it.  It's made from an old feed sack and a real pumpkin stem.  One more thing I need to add to my list of collections - feedsacks!  Actually I think I already have quite the collection.  I debated about putting the pumpkin away until I pull out all my Fall items, but just couldn't pack it away, I'm enjoying it now.    

Last Friday my friend Melissa from and I made what is becoming our single annual primitive outing.  We haven't been on a trip since last summer.  The sad thing is we only live about 8 miles apart, but we each have 3 kids and all 6 of them are in various activities that keep us pretty busy.  Maybe if the kids went to the same school district we'd be more on the same schedule...

Melissa gave me my birthday presents,  I LOVE these 
If you need help in knowing who they are....

Frito outside the basket and Shadow (Graby) inside. 

Melissa knows my love of black faced sheep, this cute little redware plate found a new home in my bowl rack.

She also knows my love of baskets - she found this adorable mini crock at a Thrift Store and picked it up for me.  

Melissa as been cooking up a storm lately with her blackened beeswax items.  She made me these 2.  I just love the tombstone angel alphabet plaque.  I hung it on a peg in our downstairs 1/2 bath.  They smell WONDERFUL.  She has several different blackened beeswax items on her selling blog.  If you click the link above to her regular blog, you can get to her selling blog.  She's just made some really neat corn nuggets.
On our shopping trip, we stopped first at our favorite Prim shop - Early American Home in Findlay Ohio.  Barb the owner is super nice.  I found this cute little handmade pillow.  Looks great in my new make-do chair. My unexciting purchases were some Olde Century paints and wool for a rug hooking project I have going. 

After a quick stop at Panera Bread for lunch, we headed to the antique gallery.  Last year on our trip we really scored big on Pfaltzgraff Folk Art that we both use as everyday dishes.  This year we saw only ONE piece - the creamer, which we both already have.  Darn.  
I picked up these neat items...

Someone had been there and cleaned the place out of whisk brooms.  This was the only one we found.  I think I'll stitch a band for it to cover the red plastic stitching.

I found this men's hat for $5.00 and thought it would look good on a hook on our dining room shelf.  

Hope you are staying cool inside this week.  ~Ann

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Civil War Heroes

This year as we celebrate the 150th Anniversary of the Civil War I thought I would introduce you to 2 of my ancestors who fought for the Union Forces.  Neither one of my Great-Great Grandfathers did anything newsworthy during their time in the Civil War.  They were common men, fighting for something they both believed in, but to our family they were heroes.  

My Great Great Grandfather, Russell Alcott was born in Upstate NY in 1825.  He was quite the traveler.  In 1849 he went off to California to seek his fortune in the Gold Rush, we're pretty sure he didn't find it!

He also fought in the Mexican war where he collected sea shells on the beach.  (I now realize that keeping everything is genetic - I have those shells in an old box.  They were passed on from generation to generation.  Too bad they weren't gold nuggets!)

At the beginning of the Civil War he was teaching in Michigan.  Evidently he appointed himself captain, enlisted his students and went off to war.  They became part of the 1st Michigan Regiment.  

In the late June 1862 he was injured during a battle and sent home to NY to recuperate. By the middle of August 1862 he was back with his regiment in Washington D.C.  In a letter dated August 17, 1862 he writes to his wife letting her know he had arrived safely.  He goes on to say, speaking of his fellow soldiers who had died: " they fought for freedom and though dead, I cannot believe they have fallen in vain.  It needed a bloody sacrifice to rouse the freemen of the North to the contest.  It needed a blood sacrifice to expiate the deepest, darkest sin of the nation.  The sacrifice has been made. What a terrible sacrifice it has been. "

The next letter he wrote home on August 24 he talks about spilling his ink bottle on his new boots.  This was to be his last letter home.  On August 30, 1862 he was killed in the second battle of Bull Run.

His wife, Cordelia, received a letter informing her of her husbands death " This line is to communicate to you the sad intelligence of the death of your dear husband who fell in the battle of last Saturday...When his body was found, it was discovered that a minnie ball had penetrated through his left side below his heart."  In another letter to her "Your husband was severely wounded and after being captured by the enemy was shot dead on the field in a cowardly and murderous manner by one of the Rebel Ruffians."  The new boots he wrote of were not found with his body.  

I don't have very much information on my other Great-Great Grandfather, John Wright.  He was born in Western NY on October 7, 1828 . About all I know is the regiment he fought with out of western NY.   As you can tell by this photo, he survived the Civil War.  Unfortunately we do not have any of the letters that he may have written home.   

John is my ancestor on my Father's side and I see glimpses of my Dad when I look at this picture.  Especially the high wrinkled forehead!

Take a minute to pause and reflect on the tremendous sacrifices that of all of our ancestors made during the horrible years of the Civil War.  

Hope you are all staying cool! ~Ann  

Monday, July 18, 2011

Make Do Chair - DONE!

I have admitted several times to all of you  that I have a procrastination problem. 
I started this chair last summer and just finished it this weekend.   I knew just how I wanted it to look, but I couldn't get there!
My husband made me the frame back and arms.  I then covered the frame with quilt batting.  Then I ran into trouble.
I had originally thought I would cover the chair in osnaburg.  After finding a cache of feed sacks at the thrift store the plan changed.  
I like to sew, but creating a pattern out of thin air just isn't in my resume of sewing skills.  This weekend while my sister was here, I showed her the chair and she dove right in.  She pieced together the feed sacks to create exactly what I had envisioned.  

When she turned one feed sack right side out we discovered this wonderful advertising symbol that we knew would be perfect as the center back of the chair.  

My sister's decorating taste is completely different than mine, so she had to "go with the flow" and be OK that the feed sacks are not all the  same color of ecru.  I kept telling her that it is OK, that's the point of this being a make-do chair.  The chair, in my humble primitive style is PERFECT!  Thank you Aunt Val.  

Not only do I think it is perfect, but there has been fighting going on over who gets to use the chair.....

Frito decided to test it out and discovered that it's perfect for sleeping no matter which way he sleeps...

Also makes a great spot for soaking in the morning sun 

Poor Shadow only had one turn....and that was in the middle of sewing the cover so he promptly got booted.

I did tell my sister that she didn't realize that the chair was simply her audition for making the new slip covers for my couch!  
Have a great week ~Ann

Friday, July 1, 2011

Sign Up to win!

The Etsy Group that I belong to is having a Christmas in July celebration.  I made this stitchery as one of the giveaway prizes.  I know, I know it's not a basket!  I do have other loves besides basket weaving and decided to make a stitchery instead.

To find out how to win this and other prizes, click here to head over to our Primitive and Folk Artists Blog.  You will find details on how to enter (easy - just become a follower and leave a comment) and when the giveaway end.

My new Christmas/Winter baskets can be found by visiting my Esty Shop here.