Tuesday, August 31, 2010

White Wednesday - Ruby's Ceramics

Ruby's Ceramics
ca. 1948

My paternal grandmother's name was "Ruby", but to
us she was "Mother 'B'" ... or rather to us children,
"Bum B". Sounds probably funny but I think she
liked it. She never corrected us... and she would have had she not approved of something we said or did.
Mother "B" liked painting ceramics. She went with
other ladies to enjoy some girl talk.
One time I actually was allowed to go with her.
I was probably about three.
She was working on a ceramic head of a woman who
was wearing a hat.
All of the ladies there sat around an oblong table with all of their supplies. They were so well dressed... I especially remember that.
She made the ceramic mugs in the picture above
and used lettering to name each mug after members
of the family.
The small mug has my nickname on it.
I was the only child to get a mug, so I am sure that
she did this before my three siblings were born.
All of this took place in Midland, Texas.


Actually, in high school my grandmother changed the spelling of her name. When the picture above was taken she was about fifteen years old and spelling her name "Rubye".
She was an only child and her mother loved taking
pictures of her daughter.
I am fortunate to have many of my grandmother's photo albums showing her primarily in her high school years. She enjoyed a very full social life and was active in school events such as plays.
It's so much fun to flip the pages of her albums and
see my grandmother having a good time with
She was always very social and enjoyed having
many girl friends throughout her life... staying in touch through the years with many of them.

Today I am linking to
Faded Charm
White Wednesday


Monday, August 30, 2010

8 Questions and 8 Answers: Compliments of Donna at "The House on the Corner"

Christmas at Jean's
(I had the mumps!)

What is your favorite childhood memory?

I have to say ONE of my favorite memories (I have many!) was Christmas at Jean's... my grandparents' home. There were always tons of gifts, wonderful food... and the children were allowed to have a little bit of watered down Mogan David wine. Yippee!!

If you could come back as any person in history, who would it be and why?

Believe it or not, considering the way she ended up.. I would have to say Amelia Earhart. I have always admired her bravery. Some stories say that she wasn't the pilot that she was made out to be, but in my book she was!

You have 5 minutes to evacuate your house. All your loved ones are safe (both the two legged and four legged varieties). What would you grab from your home on your way out the door?

Hands down it would be my genealogy files and pictures. Which tells me I should have them on separate discs and a copy kept outside of the home.

Of the posts you have created for your own blog, which one was your favorite (be sure and link it to your answer) and why?

Oh, dear, that is hard. The postings I made about my family and relatives... which is about what most of my blog centers around.

What is your dream vacation?

I would love to spend five days in Blowing Rock, North Carolina and five days in Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts. I've spent time in both places but never got my fill. If you are a fan of Jan Karon and the Mitford series... Mitford was patterned after Blowing Rock.

When you know you don't have to leave the house - do you get dressed or stay in your PJ's?

Oh, dear, I can see my friend, Laura (White Spray Paint), shaking her head at me. If my hair, makeup and half-way decent clothes are not right, then it's just not a good day for me. Even sloppy, fast makeup doesn't do the trick for me. (I know... I am hopeless!!)

Do you sing in the car when you're all alone?

Wow! Doesn't everyone?? My favorite is Chuck Berry!! "Ridin' around in my automobile...."
Have you ever been to an auction and if so, what did you buy? Were you totally in love with the item - or did you accidentally, through no fault of your own, get caught up in the moment and buy something that when you later got home, wondered - "why in the world".......not that that has happened to me....I'm just saying......

I have been to an auction, but found out quickly that I did not care for the atmosphere at all. Now, I can get pretty competitive with a silent auction. I did end up with a bracelet that I've never worn. Not good!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Show and Tell Friday - Mother's cream pitcher

Spode/Copeland Creamer

This little cream pitcher has shaped my love of ceramics probably more than anything my mother ever gave me. Poor little pitcher had a broken "arm" and Mother patched it up with a glue that has yellowed with time. The bottom of the pitcher

reads "Copeland - Spode - England".
Mother tucked a little note inside the creamer that reads,
July, 2002
Dear Karen - Spode later became Copeland. "Brown transfer of a farm scene." Is one of 3 pcs. I only have this one --
Wedding gift from Bobby and Camille.
Love, Mother

I know this little pitcher is the basis for my love of
MacKenzie-Childs, MacLachlan pattern. This little salad plate alone is $145... a reason why I have none of it!
But wouldn't my little pitcher look sweet with a grouping of this pattern??

I should find a daisy and start picking the petals. "Shall I; shall I not?"

I cannot publish a picture that includes the books to the right of my little pitcher without mentioning that these are three of my parents' books.
The red book is my mother's book that is filled with interview of
decendents of early Italian settlers in the Brazos Bottom in Texas.
The white book is her written history of our family and
their adventure coming to America.
The black book is my father's which records the history and stories
of the Seventh Armored Division during WWII.
I so miss my parents!

I am linking the posting to
My Romantic Home
Show and Tell Friday

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

White Wednesday - Jean's white chair

Jean's white chair

If you have followed my blog in the past you may remember that we called my grandmother by her first name, "Jean"... her request as she felt that she was much too young to be a grandmother.
Oh well...
This beautiful chair was in her living room for many years and was located near the fireplace.
I loved this chair.
Jean knew that, so in later years when she was well into her late 80's, she made sure that everyone
 knew who the chair was to go to...

It's been a bit of family joke that Jean was so
insistant that I get the chair that she wrote
my name on the back of it. Yikes!!
I need to have the chair recovered but all
joking aside... I can never bring myself to have
my name removed from the back.
I guess if you really believe in something,
it's best to have your thoughts cut in stone.

I'm linking to

White Wednesday at
Faded Charm

Monday, August 23, 2010

"Three or More" with my guys!

Ryan, Lance, Daren and David

Recently all of my men were together for the first time in nearly two years. It was only for two hours, but we relished every minute of it.
I remember my mother saying that the best sound
to her ears was to listen to all of her children
under one roof talking.
I truly know what she means.
Lance is our oldest son and lives in Mexico.
Daren is our middle son and he lives in La Jolla, California.
Fortunately Ryan, our youngest, lives nearby
and we see him fairly often.
I'm not sure when we'll have the same opportunity
to be together, but for now, I'm just reflecting on
that wonderful visit.

I'm linking to
Three or More Tuesday

                                                  The Gypsy Corner


Sunday, August 22, 2010

Mosaic Monday - Our Carmen goes to first grade


Our granddaughter will enter first grade
on Monday.
I remember my first day of school so vividly.
Look to the right on this blog and you will see
my picture that first day.
Carmen will be full of self-confidence.
She has been attending school since she was two years old. She is our oldest son's first child. They live in Mexico. Carmen has attended an English-speaking
school and because of the bilingual home she has
grown up in, she understands English and Spanish very well... and can read a little in both languages.
She will be dressed in her school uniform,
new shoes, backpack on her back and
a snack for breaktime.
She will also carry her purse which she
will have organized with all of her favorite
things... an old cell phone, pencils, lip gloss, note pad,
an old set of keys, and Kleenex. All very similar
to her mother's purse.
I wonderful what she will think tomorrow?
Will she know that this year will have
a few more demands on her?
Classes start at 7:30 A.M. and end at 1:30 P.M.
I just talked to Carmen on the phone and she
is so excited.

I hope the world is ready!!

I'm linking to
Little Red House
for Mosaic Monday

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Summer Sundays - At Rancho Don Pedro, Mexico

Sundays at Rancho Don Pedro, Mexico

Right now, there is nothing I would like better than to be at our ranch in Mexico with our grandchildren.
These pictures were taken at our trip down there a few months ago.
Sundays at Rancho Don Pedro, named after my husband's father, "Pete", would mean a couple of
hours with the children and then our son
and his wife joining us later to barbecue.
There is usually some swimming and sometime
the trampoline is set up.

There is plenty of room to practice bicycling
and my ever-so-patient husband spends a lot
of time with the grandchildren teaching them
things children just love to do!
Here he is pictured with our granddaughter.

Our grandson loves these little toys that
need no motor to run. There is plenty of area
to just go and go.

Can't wait for our trip back down there in November!

I'm linking to
Summer Sundays

Which will be changing to Seasonal Sundays
after Labor Day!
The Tablescaper

Friday, August 20, 2010

A Few of My Favorite Things - My lusterware!

My Lusterware!

I'm not quite sure what made me start collecting lusterware. I suppose I would see just a few pieces in
antique stores, but not a lot. Then Mary Engelbreight had a very nice collection featured in one of her books about her home.
The salt and pepper shakers were pieces I blogged about recently and as I learned today from a little research were probably not made in Japan as all of my other pieces were.

In case you are wondering about the framed pieces the top one is a Buzza print titled "Friendship" and created in 1925.
I think the one in the lower picture might be as well however it is not marked on the back.
I love looking at these pieces.
These are just a few of my favorite things.

Be sure to visit
A Few of My Favorite Things

at Bargain Hunting and Chatting with Laurie


Thursday, August 19, 2010

Foodie Friday - Ahi Tuna at The Patio on Guerra Street

Ahi Tuna

I barely remembered to take a quick picture of the tuna I ordered at this fabulous restaurant...
The Patio on Guerra Street
McAllen, Texas
If I had to make a request for my last dinner... this would be it.
Yes, it's very rare, but that is what allows it to melt in your mouth.
Coated with what I think are white and black mustard seeds there is a rich teriyaki sauce drizzled on top. This tuna is as they say, "To die for!"
I had creamed fresh spinach with this and a green salad with cilantro dressing.
Creme brulee was for dessert.
Yes.. it was a celebration. Our friends' were celebrating their anniversary and we
were celebrating ours.

This lovely lemon martini served chilled in a sugar rimmed glass started our evening.
Just tart enough!

The Patio on Guerra Street has recently been redone, a building which has been in the Guerra family for many, many years.

Original art done by a family member lines the rooms. Deep south Texas and Mexico are the themes of the paintings.

It was a wonderful evening!

A few pictures of the old
and respected Guerra family.

I'm linking to
Food Friday from Designs by Gollum

Be sure to make a visit
for a mouth-watering treat!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Vintage Recipe Thursday - Meal planning in the 60's

Recipe file: 1972
Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook: 1963
Recipes & Notes: 1962 - 1976

I love writing about my recipes and the many memories I have of cooking with my mother and two grandmothers.
The Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook, published in 1963 is one of the ones my mother and I would browse through just for a few ideas for the week's menu plan. We studied the grocery store sales sheets from the newspaper and then figured out the week's activities and then what the meals would be.
All thrifty and invaluable training that served me well throughout my married life feeding a husband and three sons.
The wooden recipe box was my project while my husband was in the Air Force, stationed at Kunsan AFB, Korea in 1972. I typed (on a real typewriter, no less!) my favorite recipes from my mother, grandmothers and friends.
One recipe is New Orlean Casserole, just a simple recipe of my grandmother Jean.
The note is from my grandmother Mother "B" that says, "January 21, 1976 - Karen sweet relish is delicious. We loved it with our bacon and eggs for breakfast - Love, Mama "B"
Yes... relish for breakfast -- I think sort of a West Texas tradition.
Here is a recipe from my mother that she got from her friend Betty from England. This was during my parents' early married days.

Betty's Pancakes
3 1/2 c. flour
5 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
2 eggs
2 1/2 c. milk
6 tbsp. melted butter
6 tbsp. sugar

Just mix all of this in the order it is listed.
I just made this recipe this week.
They're wonderful!

Visit Tales from Bloggeritaville
for Thrifty Thursday!!

A little addition: Don't think that these are all of the recipes I have.
I have several recipes files, three-ring binders full of recipes, plus approximately 200 cookbooks.
I can't part with a one of them!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

White Wednesday - Carmen's Christening Dress

Carmen's Christening

Our granddaughter looked like a little doll in her christening dress and bonnet. Her maternal grandmother had made this beautiful outfit for her.
She was the best little baby during the ceremony as
if she knew it was a very special time.
I have this picture framed on my mantel.
Carmen is our oldest son's daughter.
He and his sweet family live in Mexico.

Thanks to
Faded Charm
for White Wednesday where
we get to share such
special pictures from our lives.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Toot Your Horn Tuesday -- My latest antics!

This is me - today!

Isn't this just lovely?? If you look very closely at the top of the arm... near the "ball" you can see a slight line running vertically. That is the break. I can see now why the doctor said a couple of times how fortunate I was that the break did not separate, thus requiring surgery. So, I will be laying low for a bit. Have had to cancel my trip to Austin... which is a huge disappointment to me. Why do they make slings so ugly and uncomfortable??

What happened was we went bowling with our church friends. I had not bowled in years. I didn't realize that the trend was to oil the lanes. Way too slippery for this very unathletic person. I slipped big time on the lane and landed on my shoulder. It's my right shoulder and thank goodness I am left-handed!

My husband is in Mexico on business until Saturday so I think I'm just going to vegetate for the week.

Is this what they call a "stay-cation" meaning to just lay low at home and do nothing?? No fun!

I'm linking over to
Toot Your Horn Tuesday
at A Silly Little Sparrow

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Summer Sundays -- Sunday drives

A car similar to ours

The first car I remember my parents buying was similar to the one pictured above. Occasionally we would take a Sunday drive. My parents, my little sister and me. No seat belts or car seats, you know. After all this memory was around 1953.
After my brother was born in 1954 we existed, barely,
all very tightly squeezed into our sedan. My brother would be seated in the new car seat. It was so fancy. It had a toy steering wheel with a red horn in the middle. The "car seat"  attached to the actual car seat with two large hooks.
You get the picture.
Then, when my youngest brother was born, my parents 
discovered station wagons.
My father on one of our family trips.

By this time my sister and I were entering out teen years.
Station wagons were so totally uncool!
My dad drove slower than anyone on the road and we nicknamed him "turtle".
He had almost total control over the radio. My sister and I wanted to listen to our pop tunes while my parents preferred the easy listening stations. On long trips we made a deal with our parents... for every two songs that my parents preferred we were allowed to listen to one of our own.
I remember my father's favorite expression,
"Good gosh!"
He rarely liked any of the music we listened to.
Never did I ever see my mother drive my father anywhere.
My father was the master, man in control, the boss, the head "honcho" of the road.
To allow my mother to drive him anywhere would have been so well... "unmanly".
Rumor has it that once he had a root canal and actually had to have my mother drive him home. I did not actually witness this. It is a bit of family lore, you see.
I've been thinking about my growing up years and our mode of transportation. While having our Suburban primped and ready for sale, my husband and I shared a vehicle for
Seven weeks!
Long story.
It made me realize that in my parents 60+ years of marriage, my mother never had her own vehicle to drive.
She and my father somehow managed to share a car.
Never, ever did I hear a cross word about it.
They meshed their schedules together and made it work.
Kudos to them as my husband I dealt with a daily
run-through of schedules in order to have wheels.
Well, such is life in modern times.
Hopefully I've brought forth a memory or two of
your family's mode of transportation when you
were growing up.

It's Summer Sundays at
The Tablescaper
Take a few minutes to check out the great postings!