Monday, January 30, 2012

30 Fabulous Reuses & Repurposes for Old or Recalled Cribs

This is actually a really great post; practical uses and the things they make with the old cribs are not bad looking either. If I had some furniture making skills I would love to make the chairs and tables. You can't even tell that they are from a repurposed baby crib; so if you have an old crib you have to check this link out.
30 Fabulous Reuses & Repurposes for Old or Recalled Cribs

Valentine's Day Gifts at PostcardsInTheAttic

As you all know I have a deep love of old postcards but there is nothing like a postcard that is over 100 years old.

This amazing 1882 Valentine published by Prang and Co. Boston has a photo of a lovely young man on the front with the caption "TO THE BOY OF BOYS" and on the back Flowers decoration and "ST. VALENTINE" It is adorned with a feathery ribbon sandwiched between the two cards.  

It can be found at

Here are a few more of the lovely antique Valentine cards in my shop:

Also there is a wonderful Twitter Tree going on right now today if you would like to get some more exposure for your own shop.  If you are interested in participating stop at
I know Christie would be glad to have you!

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Weekly Treasury Overview - January 29, 2012

Another Great Week has past and many generous people spent time curating treasuries for their Etsy teammates.  A few were so kind to include my items too.  Here is this weeks treasury overview.

Note: next week my blog posts will not be very regular and Aromatherapy Thursday will not be back until February 19.  I am traveling on both of the upcoming Thursdays for business and will not be able to access a computer for most of the day.  I am not sure how much free time I will have that entire week but posts should be back up as normal once I return. 
Thank you for your understanding.

Friday, January 27, 2012

My Funny Friday

The 80's... Berke Breathed made the Sunday paper worth getting.  Now AACKTHPTH!!! on the entire cartoon sections.  I miss Bloom County; thank God for the internet.

I hope you enjoy.  Have a great Friday!
Bloom County

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Aromatherapy Thursday - Lilac

You can get Lilac Fragrance Oil from Etsy Shop Indigo Fragrance at
I Grew up in the Midwest where lilacs were abundant and splashes of purple would decorate the country landscape, taking it for granted that everyone had one in their yard. The fragrance of the blossoms was so sweet and if we didn't get a hard freeze it would be heavy on the air in the spring time.  They are a short blooming shrub but maintained a nice foliage throughout the summer months so they were well worth having and very popular.  Unfortunately for me they only grow in zones 3 -7 so I haven't been able to enjoy that sweet scent for over 4 years.

As I mentioned in other posts, my grandmother Lily had a green thumb.  She had so many wonderful signature plants that many of my memories with her has a flower or herb attached to it.  She always had giant trumpet lilies, fragrant pink peonies, four-o-clocks and one of my favorites, her Lilacs.  She was not very well-off financially but she was very thrifty and appreciated the things she had and labored hard to make sure those things precious to her lasted.  She loved plants and the lilacs she had (along with the lilies and peonies) were heirloom.  My great-grandmother gave her those plants which came from her heirloom collection so the lilacs that decorated my grandmother's yard were over 100  years old.

I am  not a winter person at all and would probably drive my grandmother nuts way before April with my cabin fever.  I hated waiting for the outdoors to come back alive.  On some of my restless days she would take me through the yard showing me the signs of rebirth everywhere.  The lilacs were one that I distinctly remember because the buds looked like tiny little grape clusters.  I noticed how if I would pick one and smash it a little the tiny petals would open slightly and they smelled almost lemony.  Even after she passed away I survived my cabin fever anxiously waiting for the those tiny purple nubs to pop from her lilac bush letting me know that I had almost made it through another year's dark winter days.

When my grandfather passed, many years later, the land was passed down and I took joy in nurturing my grandmother's plants and adding many more.  Often I would stand back, look at my gardens, and hope that she would be able to see how the land she loved was well taken care of.  But at one point I thought my grandmother's lilac bush was going to finally die after all those generations.  It was the largest of the group but was starting to look too sick to keep, its branches were stiff and gnarled with barely any leaves.  We had been renovating the land and decided to cut it down and smooth out the hill to make room for a larger cottage garden.  The area was beautiful and bright but in my heart I knew that I had lost a great heirloom and something very dear to me. 

After a few months I noticed a little green stem poking out of the ground where the original bush had been.  Amazingly the small amount of roots left behind came back to life.  Over the next few years the bush grew back, slightly smaller but healthy and full of its original glory.  Although I have since moved it is reportedly still growing and standing proud, just like the memories of my grandmother it will never die. 
This beautiful painting was found in ETSY shop Studio Laura at
Another unfortunate thing about lilacs is that I do not know of any true Lilac Essential Oil.  They have very good fragrance oil but none I have seen are truly essential.  If they do it would have to be made differently than others since the distilling process makes the oil smell rancid.  I have always relied on the synthetic but find the results to be very satisfying.

Aromatherapy is much more scientific than my personal studies give it credence but personally I believe that some of the effects of certain aromas have more to do with the scent memories than actual properties.  For me I feel more up lifted and rejuvenated after I burn a lilac scented candle or tart.  I think that it tells my brain "you made it winter is over."  So, due to my budget, I will have to stick with the in expensive oils.

If you are able to acquire a natural product or use the actual fresh flowers themselves; lilac boasts of the ability to sooth and calm nerves giving you a better balance emotionally.  It is sedative and lessens anxiety so overall its main properties are soothing and calming.

Although it is not commonly used in true aromatherapy I believe that this beautiful flower is worth adding to the list since it has such a delicate and rich aroma that packs a powerful emotional punch.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Valentine's Day Gift Tags - New Listings
Good morning everyone.  I just wanted to post some of my new listings and a couple of older ones that are perfect for Valentine's Day.  I hope you like them.  I love the creativity and flexibilty of paper crafting; mixing old with new.  What fun!  and I think they turned out rather pretty, if I don't say so myself:)

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Happy New Year - Dragon vs Mayan Calendar

I find it truly amazing how often life and cosmic law will simply balance itself without a real conscious effort on anyone's part.  On one side of the globe there is a "Dooms Day" mentality with a mass of people believing that 2012 will be the end of mankind and on the other half there are a multitude of people celebrating the first day of The Year Of The Dragon.  That half of the globe is not wringing their hands in worry but embracing a future that will be prosperous and filled with many good things. 

I read that in Asian countries people are excitedly getting married and trying to have babies that will be born under the lucky Dragon's sign at a rate of 20% increase in births this year.  I wonder if the Western World will have a 20% decrease in births since we seem to have gravitated to the theory that the world is going to end in December.  I have studied many intriguing books on the Mayan Calender and ancient history; I started reading them because I like the mystery and intrigue of long forgotten civilizations.  Unfortunately along with the good things I learned from these books I also picked up on the message that they Mayans believed we were shortly running out of time.  When I first started to read them it was about 10 or more years ago so I was fascinated with the year 2012, but unfortunately, as always, time has marched quickly by and here I sit in 2012 thinking about all those predictions. 

As a Christian person I believe that the end will come as a thief in the night and that the Mayan Calendar is intriguing but just like our modern calendars...flip it.  I know that people much more intelligent than I will have a rational of why we can't just flip it, but really?  Wouldn't it be like Billy Bob learning to read and for the first time he sees December 31st on the calendar and freaks out.  Why does it just stop?  Isn't there anymore?  It's the end of the world!  Wait maybe that is why the calendars run into January instead of ending at the actual end of the year, people where panicking every December.

I do think that there is a lot of great information that we can glean from studying ancient civilizations and that there are many predictions that have come true or look like they were true from ancient and modern profits. But first of all for every ancient dooms day prediction there is an equally ancient prediction from other cultures that the world is not going to end.  Secondly many of us in the Western World proudly claim to be Christians but then we will panic and worry about the end of the world when our faith strongly tells us that no human being knows when that time will be.  And lastly even if the Mayan hit it right on the head and the world ends, knowing that will not change anything, what is going to happen will happen.  So I have decided to take the message as:  Live life as if each day is your last, behave in a manner that if it was your last day you wouldn't be scared that you would be sent straight to ... treat the planet as a treasure, and love people as if this was their last day. 

I also have decided (maybe this happens as you get older to everyone) that I will not choose to live in the drama of doom and gloom and worry all the time but I choose to celebrate life.  I may not live in the East and I don't practice the same religions but the Year of the Dragon sounds like a very good year.  I am going to embrace 2012 as a prosperous year and as a year that begins my future.  No looking back, no worrying about the end, just thanking God for my bright future with all the people I love around me.  So here is to the Year of the Dragon, may all of you have a prosperous year and enjoy great wealth and relationships!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Weekly Treasury Overview - January 22, 2011

Once again it is time for the Weekly Treasury Overview.  I heart felt thanks goes out to those that put these lovely treasuries together and were so kind to include the items from Postcards In The Attic and Butterfly In The Attic.  They have made my week since I have been unable to function at my fullest. 

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Who Doesn't Love a Good Rain?

Isn't it funny how it seems the weather will often correlate with your mood or at least how you feel?  As I may have mentioned before I have been battling a wicked cold and have been feeling under the weather, so to honor me and my sniffles Fresno has just developed its first real rain since, I think, since June.  While this may not seem significant to many, it is actually a great development here.

Not only will the rain add to what little reserve we have but it cleans out the air.  I thank God that while my head begins to clear of its enormous pressure the air is clearing also.  I am surprised at how I have become so accustom to having little or no rain.  In the Midwest a rain storm is nothing more than an inconvenience and not thought of more until a barn is lifted off its foundation or a cow flies by.  But I noticed that I ran to the window at the start of this down pour, anxiously wondering if the Japanese garden will be OK.  Really?  A garden having issues with rain? OK?..  I guess I have become a little spoiled with the fair weather here if I am starting to think that this was a true storm. 

In the short time it has taken to write this little post my big worrisome storm has passed by and it is calmly sprinkling again.  I know that friends from the Midwest must be rolling their eyes by now but not to worry I haven't forgotten what real weather is about; I just had a Fresno moment. 

Friday, January 20, 2012

Bloom County Kind of Day

Bloom County by Berke Breathed was my favorite comic strip growing up.  I was into world affairs and politics at a young age so the characters and the funny insights appealed to me directly.  Since I have not been feeling well I have had a minute to reflect on what is missing in my life now that I am grown and I have come to the conclusion it is Bloom County.  I miss my Opus and so I have decided to add a little "Penguin Lust" back into my life.  I hope you them enjoy as much as I do.

Bloom County

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Aromatherapy Thursday will resume next week

Hi friends, I have been really really under the weather so Aromatherapy Thursday will resume next week.  I hope everyone else is doing well.  God Bless

From Postcards In The Attic at

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Weekly Treasury Overview - January 14 2012

Good Saturday Morning! Or if you are like me it may be your Friday! It has been a very busy week and it looks like others have been very busy too. Once again several of Postcards In The Attic's items have been featured in treasuries this week. I am always amazed out how many beautiful items there is on Etsy and I am very honored when I am picked to join in the treasury fun. Thank you to all who included me!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Aromatherapy Thursday - Patchouli

Patchouli is a shrub that is found in Southeast Asia; it is related to the mint family.  Patchouli has a musky, earthy sent that very nicely blends with other oils for a rich perfume.  Natural musks come from a gland found in specific animals such as Musk Deer and it was used for the highest grade of perfume years ago because of its unique scent and strong fixative qualities.  However since musk can only be harvested by destroying the animal during the 20th century perfume makers started using synthetic musks.  Many people want something natural so instead of relying on the synthetic musks they found Patchouli, along with a few other similar scented plants, to be a great alternative giving Patchouli more notoriety in the perfume industry.
You can grow your own Patchouli by purchasing this plant from ETSY shop JensiesSoaps at
Because Patchouli has such a strong distinct scent it should be used as a "bottom note" in perfumes.  This means that there should be less patchouli than other fragrances and should be used to enhance the perfume not dominate it.  Often I will pass by someone that is only using Patchouli by itself  and while I don't find it offensive, it is strong and probably not quite the scent that the wearer was intending.  So when using Patchouli as a component keep in mind that less is more and that it should be used as if it where a musk.

Patchouli is known as "warm" scent that can help relax you and can help enhance sleep.  It also is heralded as an aphrodisiac.  Using Patchouli as a relaxant can be as easy as adding 1 drop of it along with 5 drops of lavender on a cotton ball and placing it in a dish or as complicated as specially formulated massage oil. 

Soaking in a bath water infused with a Patchouli bath salt or oil can be very soothing for most people (but remember to always do an allergy test prior to using any new natural product.)  It has nervine and anti-inflammatory properties that can make it very useful in treating dry and irritate skin.

Here is a list of some scents that would be complimented by using Patchouli as a bottom note:
Lavender, Rose, Bergamont, Lemon, Orange, Rose Geranium, Violet, Jasmine, Ylang-Ylang and neroli.  When mixing scents always use just a very little of the bottom and middle notes at first because you don't want them to over power the top notes. 

As with any essential oil, homeopathic treatment, or aromatherapy, you should always consult your physician prior to use and never substitute a home treatment for medical treatment. Pregnant ladies should always use caution (and consult their physician) when using any essential oils, herbs and home treatments. Remember that just because it is natural does not automatically make it safe, so treat it with the same respect you would with a prescription and talk to your doctor first. Also you should always do allergy test prior to using any products with essential oils that you are not familiar with.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Its Universal Letter Writing Week - Confessions of the World's Worst PenPal

Happy Universal Letter Writing Week!   I think that January just feels like such a long month because its cold, a lot of nature is dormant and there are no major holidays (other than the first of course.)  So in an effort to break the monotony I always look for special events or holidays and just like every other year there is not much going on. But I did find it thought provoking that this week was Letter Writing Week and it suddenly triggered memory of many unanswered penpal letters.
Beautiful Ephemera found at ETSY shop Leannes Loot at
It is funny how someone can love postcards so much and yet still be the World's Worst penpal.  My entire childhood I loved the idea of penpals and had a few but never could get myself to sit still long enough to write an actual good letter.  I had a couple loyal penpals that were steadfast despite my failures, for every 4 letters they wrote I would write 1.  I think that it was because nothing seemed to ever be going on and then when it did I was too busy enjoying the moment to actually sit down and write about it.  Also I hated grammar and spelling, as you may have noticed by now, and would instantly get writers block thinking about "is it I after E or E after I..."  But in my defense this was well before spellcheck. 
This wonderful digital postcard can be purchased from ETSY shop French Kissed at
I hated using the dictionary; it never made sense to me that if you couldn't spell the word that you would have look it up among thousands of words in the largest book ever made.  So in other words you had to know how to spell the word in order to find it to learn how to spell it; there's the problem.  I would spend hours trying to formulate a proper letter, looking up every word I couldn't spell (all of them) just to be told after all my pain staking effort that my handwriting was like hen scratching. Thank God for email is all I can say.

Email is perfect for people like me:  1) you can spell check and catch most of your errors 2) now that it is a main streamed form of correspondence people seem to have started accepting our for are and sole instead of soul as mere typos.  They seemed to forget there was an idiot on the other end typing that doesn't know how to spell the simplest of words.  3) there are no grammar rules.  The evil comma finally vanquished, the horrid semi-colon struck down and I don't even have to use a period if I put enough spaces after things.

All kidding aside I was the worse penpal and I apologize to each and every one from the bottom of my heart.  I love a good letter and the beautiful writings on the backs of each my old postcards.  I want to be part of the great correspondence loop.  So one of my personal goals for this year is to at least send out more than 5 Christmas cards and to include a note instead of just signing them...

...I better get started today this may take awhile.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Happy Birthday David Bowie

David Bowie turns 65 years old today.   Really, good Lord where does the time go?  Granted he is older than I am but I grew up with his music and it just seems like yesterday.

Growing up in the 70's and 80's was a really strange time but maybe it feels the same for all generations and I just noticed mine.   As I was growing up there was such a wide range of changes in things like technology and pop culture it wasn't the same country in 1980 as it was in 1970.  There are so many things that the kids couldn't live without today that were first introduced to the public during my teens.  Things like . . .Satellite dish, heck when I was young many of us still had black and white TVs . . . Cell phones, the phones in our home still had to be connected to the wall and it was a novelty to have a one in any other color than black or ivory . . . Computers, I felt so lucky that our family had a type writer (first one wasn't even electric.)  When these technologies changed so did our pop culture along with how and where we would listen to our music.

I the 70's, aside from a live concert, the radio, record player,  and boom box was where you would listen to your music.  But in the 80's along came satellite TV and MTV!   I was a typical teenage girl so I was obsessed with my music.  I liked rock and blues most and my favorites where David Bowie, The Rolling Stones, Hendrix, Blues Brothers, and Alice Cooper but basically I loved all music from that genera. As a boy crazy teenage girl, MTV fed both of my obsessions by not only blasting the music but the images of what it was to be a big haired rock star.  Every boy and girl in my school dressed to look like either a member of Van Halen or The Bangles.

During the 80's, the band's or singer's hair was almost equally as important as whether or not they could sing.  If you didn't have the hair you might as well hang it up.  David Bowie had the hair, the talent, and the rebellious style that we all craved at the time.  Was it really so long ago that I was jammin' to Fame and trying to "rock the house down?"  Yikes! time flies...

Happy Birthday David Bowie and thanks for fulfilling the music needs of a rebellious teenage girl.  I hope you have a great one it was a lot of fun.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Aromatherapy Thursday - Eucalyptus

In the 80's Eucalyptus emerged (outside of a vapor rub) and has taken off like wild fires.   Everywhere you looked they added it to lotions, facial tissues, face masks, etc.  There were bunches of the dried branches tied together with jute and placed in a vases, a swag over every door and floral arrangements had at least a few sprigs of it.  Because of this, I get a little wave of nostalgia every time I smell Eucalyptus.  It reminds of my country home as a teen and brings back memories of fresh air wafting over the little bundles of carefully arranged branches next to the open window. 

This beautiful and frangrant wreath can be found in ETSY shop Eligant Holidays at
It also brings back memories of sick days and sniffles as I plunge my hand into a box of Eucalyptus flavored Kleenex.  By that time I am thanking God that I spent the extra $1.00 for the lotion infused tissue instead of going El Cheapo and allowing my nose to drop off.  Eucalyptus wasn't just a fad because it was a good looking abundant plant, it really has some great therapeutic properties.  It is used in Vick's because they discovered long ago that its oils work the best to open up a congested head and chest.

There has been many times that I have placed cotton balls with little drops of Eucalyptus essential oil around my sick rooms.   I have placed drops of it in vaporizers and in pots of simmering water so I could breath it in.  Provided you are not allergic to it, it works great!

Not only does Eucalyptus have the ability to relieve you from your stuffiness but it can also be uplifting, stimulating and invigorating, all things that we desperately need when we are sick.  But don't hide this wonderful oil away until you are under-the-weather because who couldn't use a pick me up every day?  I have also used it to refresh rooms after I have been sick (or had a near miss) as it is a known antiseptic with cleansing properties.

Aside from the properties that work so well to clear the head and mind, Eucalyptus is also found in things like Icy Hot because it helps relax muscles and relieve muscle spasms.  Eucalyptus is known to have anti-inflammatory, analgesic and antispasmodic properties.   What a wonderful diverse little tree. 

As with any essential oil, homeopathic treatment, or aromatherapy, you should consult your physician prior to use and never substitute a home treatment for medical treatment.  Pregnant ladies should always use caution with all essential oils, herbs and home treatments.  Remember that just because it is natural does not automatically make it safe, so treat it with the same respect you would with a prescription and talk to your doctor first.  Also you should always do allergy test prior to using any products with essential oils that you are not familiar with.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

January Giveaway Contest - Saffron Whimsy

SaffronWhimsy is filled with many richly colored beautiful pieces of art; it is a must see of ETSY shops.  Store owner, Gaurie ☆, is not only offering a wonderful giveaway now but will be offering them throughout the month of January.  To join in all the fun and get your chance to win, please see the instruction and links following the pictures.  Here are some pictures from that listing:

For more pictures see the actual link to the giveaway.

The directions are below but make sure you follow the link so you can favorite the giveaway.

This wording is a quote from the Etsy Giveaway listing.
✮ Giveaway1:

All you have to do is:
1. "Like" my Facebook page (link given below)
2. Leave a comment there telling me which is your favorite item in my shop!
That's it!

As soon as I reach 50 "Likes", I will use to pick the first winner winner out of the 50.

The second giveaway will be announced there after!

The winner will receive one surprise gift from the the items featured in the above photos! Good Luck! :)

Link to my facebook page:

PS. Please don't purchase this listing! :P
PS2: if you are participating, it would help if you favourited this item, so that I can cross check and be sure I didn't miss your name while picking the winner!       

Sunday, January 1, 2012

A Seed Planted and A Collection Grew

I am so grateful to have such special family, friends and fans in my life.   I had a wonderful New Years Eve celebration this year and would love to have you post what you did for your celebration in the comments. 

I was busy this morning creating a large New Years Day dinner.   Cooking gave me a chance to reflect back on what a busy but great year it has been.  One of the wonderful things that have happened this year is that I started my two little shops.  I am sure that I am no different than anyone else with a small business in that each of my shops started with a tiny seed planted in my head as a child.  I have always loved to learn and discover new things and I think that is why I find the thrill of  finding postcards and vintage items and rock hounding for gems and minerals so exhilarating.  Although these things may seem far reaching they are joined by one common passion - treasure hunting.

The seed for treasure hunting was planted by my grandparents through their gifts of antique postcards and collectibles.  They would also show me their collections and tell me why they collected it and where it came from.  One of the seeds my grandparents planted bloomed into my passion for rock hounding.

When I was around 4 years old they gave me a large chunk of petrified wood.  The interest grew as they told me the story about how they bought it in Arizona when they visited the Petrified Forest.  They spent time telling me about how it was formed and what the forest looked liked.  I was utterly amazed that an entire forest could be turned into stone and I couldn't get enough of this phenomenon.   I wanted desperately to see it for myself and spent hours unending dreaming of the day when I could travel to Arizona.

This awesome vintage postcard showing the Petrified Forest was found in ETSY shop The Flying Broom at
 A few years later my uncle was stationed in Arizona's Air Force base and he sent me more amazing specimens.  Among what he sent me was Chalcedony Roses, Desert Rose and Apache Tears (obsidian rocks that you could see through) and from that I was officially obsessed with finding gems and minerals - a rock hound was born.
This lovely example of an Apache Tear or Obsidian stone was found in ETSY shop
No Stone Left Unturned 2 at
All of the hobbies have started out the same; a little trinket, a souvenir, a story, and a seed was planted and from that a collection grew.  Here are some new finds that remind me of the things that sparked my interests as a child.