Back In The Game

Well, it is finally here.  No, not spring, which finally did make it to New England.  I am referring to thrifting season-it has finally begun!!!  However the sale is labeled-estate sale, garage sale or tag sale-now is the time we will see them nearly every weekend, rather than sporadically.  And I cannot wait to start digging!!!

I have gone to a couple over the last few weeks, and if you follow me on Instagram, you know I hit it out of the park at my first one by snagging this little beauty:

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I also found this gorgeous piece which I was swooning over but could not afford it (and it was way over priced), but man, was I in LOVE!!!

Antique cabinet

 

 

 

 

I also saw my dream pick up truck, the one I picture myself driving around town on Saturday mornings to local garage sales with a bulldog riding shotgun when I finally have my dream house (and dream bulldog) in the country.

Pick up truck

 

 

 

 

 

Even if I do not stop at every sale, I just love driving down the street and seeing views like this:

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There is something so exciting yet very comforting about these sales.  The suspense of what I might find underscored with the comfort of knowing I have the chance to find a treasure, a diamond in the rough, a DIY project or a combination of all three.

Switching gears to one of my other vices, did you guys hear there is another great old show getting a comeback?  It’s “Murphy Brown” and I cannot wait!!!  I will really miss Robert Pastorelli and his character “Eldin”, but the chance to see Candace Bergen and Grant Shaud (“Miles”) interact again has me on the edge of my seat.

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The original “Murphy Brown” cast from its first run (original source unknown).

And are you guys enjoying the new “Roseanne” episodes as much as I am???  It is really hitting its pace again and delving into the character’s pasts to make us understand why they are where they are in the present.  Great acting, great writing, great story-lines…..I am completely loving the show.

My other current fave show, “Superstore”, continues to entertain me as well.  The mix of these characters is one I have not seen before and each new guest character (Pastor Craig and Isaac are two standouts featured in the hilarious “Amnesty” episode) instantly becomes my favorite!!!  I just really hope we have not seen the last of Linda Porter, since her character, Myrtle, was fired despite how adorable she is.  Fingers crossed we see her again!!!  And please, God, let me find a friend like Dina!!!!  Everyone needs a Dina in their life!!!

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   The cast of “Superstore” (Courtesy of NBC). 

Now, time for a song.  One of the new tags on Facebook is asking people to name the 10 albums that most influenced them.  This got me thinking about the ones I would name and why.  Of course, “Born To Run” & “Otis Blue” would top my list, but that still leaves eight other choices.  That brought me to remember my introduction to this man’s voice.

I was watching “The Last Waltz” for the first time, and I was mesmerized.  His voice, his lyrics, his interpretation of the song and the music-all perfection.  He is one of my favorites to this day, and whether it’s a ballad or a rocker, I love every second of his songs.  And for someone who grew up on radio and continues to listen to all of it today-local, national and satellite-these words bring back that feeling of hearing my favorite song being played.  It is a primal emotional response like no other.  Music & songs allow us to time travel,  taking us back to moments in our lives that we cherish or can’t forget for other reasons.  Either way, they make us feel…..”and then we can get down to what is really wrong”.

“Turn up your radio and let me hear the song
Switch on your electric light, then we can get down to what is really wrong.

Turn it up, turn it up, little bit higher, radio
Turn it up, that’s enough, so you know its got soul.”

Van Morrison:  “Caravan” (studio version & “The Last Waltz” version).

I only own the rights to my own pictures, nothing else I featured in this post.  The rest are things I love and want to share with you you  🙂

Until next time, happy digging!!!

 

 

 

 

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Creating A Mood

Hello and happy fall, Vixens!!!

I have been stuck for a while on how to decorate my place.  It seems the more choices I have, the worse it is.  And since I have so much saved on Pinterest, I decided to go through my pins and create a mood board to help me narrow down my choices.

I started with the living room.  I asked myself what is important for me to have in there. Comfortable seating for me and guests when I entertain, good lighting for when I curl up with a good book, a comfy pillow and throw for when I want to get extra cozy, color, texture and a few things that I love.

Here is what I came up with:

 

Mood board

 

What do you think?

Let’s break it down.

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The focal point of any living room is the sofa, so that was my first pick.  I never had one with a chaise, but the thought of having one has always been in the back of my mind. This sectional from Arhaus really spoke to me, from the overstuffed cushions to the rolled arms to the gorgeous color (Theater Cream).  So pretty.  They have a wide variety of sectional couches to choose from.

 

lamp

 

Next I moved to lighting.  I adore the feminine charms a chandelier gives to a room, but in a living room, I prefer lamps.  This industrial style floor lamp embraced my love of old & worn while bringing in a masculine touch.

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books

 

A floor lamp eliminates the need for an end table on one side of the sofa, but on the other side I envisioned a place to stack a pile of old family books that I like to have around.  I thought the white metal chair from Target would serve that purpose beautifully while providing some balance to the metal lamp on the other side.

 

kirklands pillowcable knit throw from Ethan AllenVelvet+Throw+Pillow

 

More texture and comfort are provided courtesy of the cable knit throw and  pillow, and the velvet pillow provides a subtle pop of color while keeping the neutral pallet of the room alive.

 

coffee table

 

And those items store away easily when not needed in an antique tool chest which serves as a coffee table.  Look at that beautiful hardware!!!!!  Sa-wooooon!!!!!

 

industrial photo

 

My sofa will be up against a wall because the room is not big enough for me to float it. That means the big blank wall behind the couch needs some visual interest.  Instead of doing a straight line of prints which will only follow the line of the sofa, I prefer one large picture.  I adore black and white photography, and the grittier the better.  This one satisfies all of the above.

 

pink roses

 

I finished up the room the way I finish every room-with fresh flowers.  Pink roses are gorgeous, but especially in my heart’s desire, white Ironstone.  Just imagine those beautiful blooms in that pitcher on top of that tool trunk………..too beautiful for words.

 

BTR

 

And the final touch?  Music, what else?  My favorite song of all time-“Jungleland“-from Bruce Springsteen’s life altering “Born To Run” album is always in my CD player – yes, I still LOVE my CD’s!!!!   🙂  And happy birthday, Bossman!!!

The best part of this mood board?  It can be created on any budget.  I may have taken some of the pictures from expensive websites or stores, but that does not mean when I am ready to bring my dream living room to life I will not be able to find any of the items at flea markets, tag sales or on Craigslist.  I find the key is to be patient and go after one piece at a time.  Start with the focal point and go from there.  Before you know it, everything comes together & you did not have to empty your bank account to do it.

What does your mood board look like???  Let me know in the comments below.

None of the images in this post belong to me.  All resources are provided in the links.

This post was not sponsored.  All opinions, ideas and swoons are mine 🙂

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

 

 

Weekend Wanderings

Hello, Vixens!!!  Happy Monday!!!  Did you enjoy your weekend?

Do you know how empty the stores are the weekend before Black Friday, not including the grocery stores?  I spent the weekend running errands and picking up supplies for my apartment and I was amazed at how quickly I was in and out of the stores.  I guess everyone is waiting for the Black Friday sales.

When I was at one of the home improvement stores on Saturday, I was overwhelmed by the variety of Christmas items they had not just for the outside of the home as expected, but for inside as well.  For example, how adorable is this nativity scene???

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Or these Nemo-themed ornaments?

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I buy myself one new ornament a year and yes, it is usually a Peanuts themed one.  Below is this year’s winner:

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This was adorable, too, but I do not need it & my wallet does not need the almost $100 price tag.  But it is cute nonetheless:

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I also loved these resin statues:

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And Elvis was in the house, too!!! (Well, in the home improvement store actually……)

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I am not a fur/leopard print person, but I did find it surprising on hats!!!

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And I am not a “Star Wars” person, but how adorable are these Yoda lights?!?!

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Or this giant Yoda and his friends???  Buddy the Elf is my favorite!!!

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Then when I was at the grocery store, I saw this adorable display:

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I spotted these too cute for words giant Woodstock & Charlie Brown greeters at CVS:

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Are you guys into the Black Friday sales?  I must admit after shopping flea markets, antiques stores, the outlets and online shopping, I have really lost my taste for the malls.  I will only do it in an emergency or if a friend asks me to help her choose a dress for a special occasion.  During my last few years in NY I wanted to go to the outlets at midnight on Black Friday, but somehow talked myself out of it when they released an estimate of expecting over five thousand shoppers.  Crazy, right?  And the only way I could get to the 5 am or 6 am sales was if I stayed up all night, and that was rather impossible after a meal of tryptophan packed turkey.  And later in the day I cringed when I drove by the stores and saw how packed they were.  Ugh.

I am, however, all about the day after Christmas sales.  Like most frugal minded people, I pick up next year’s cards, tree lights and other items needed for the following holiday season.  I do try to keep it simple and green because there is so much waste this time of year it makes me feel guilty about my carbon footprint.  And since my feet are a size 11, I have more than most to make up for   🙂

Also, if you are looking for a great read this holiday season or a fabulous gift for the music lover on your list, then you MUST pick up a copy of the greatest book ever written…………

At least this year……………………………………………………………………

Bruce Springsteen’s autobiography “Born To Run”.  (BONUS:  The audio book comes out December 6 and it is narrated by The Boss himself!!!  Yes, please!!!)

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Despite pre-ordering my copy online, it took much longer to receive than I anticipated. Thank goodness for my local library!!!  This is a GREAT read, and I do not just say that as his most dedicated fan (Kathy Bates has forever prohibited anyone from using the phrase “biggest fan” LOL!!!)  I say it because it is true.  Springsteen’s talent for writing is not just limited to his songs.  His words are brutally honest, reflective,  happy, sad, true and unbelievably powerful.  They are also healing as he discusses his bout with depression.  It has generally been considered a woman’s disease by society so, therefore, not given the proper attention it deserves.  But when someone like The Boss comes forward and admits he has suffered from it, people listen.  And that is what mental illness needs:  a voice.

As someone who has suffered with depression most of my life, Springsteen’s admission of the disease validated every symptom I have ever had, from not being able to get myself out of bed for days at a time or not being able to function in general day to day activities.  I love Bruce Springsteen for a multitude of things, but for this most of all.  His being so forthright with this information takes away the stigma that still sadly exists about this disease and mental illness in general.  Mere words will never be adequate enough to thank this man for what he has done for the world of music, let alone me.  But it is all I have to give so, thank you Bruce, for everything.

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

***(Nothing in this post is sponsored.  I am just sharing some of my favorite things with you.)

Fall Memories of & Happy Birthday Bruce Springsteen!!!

Like so many of you, fellow Vixens, fall is my favorite time of year.  It has been that way my whole life.  The cooler temperatures, the leaves changing colors, the crunch of the fallen ones underfoot or jumping in a freshly raked pile of them, pumpkins, Halloween, fall festivals, apple picking and the smell of wood burning in fireplaces…..need I go on?

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It started when I was a kid planning my costume and dreaming about how much yummy candy I would get on All Hallow’s Eve.  I would also wonder how big that year’s pumpkin would be and how sweet it would smell with a candle in it to light up the carved face.  Then when I was older I used to walk home from school in the fall after field hockey practice.  At the beginning of the season, it was still hot thanks to Indian Summer so the mile I had to walk home in the heat was excruciating.  But once October arrived, it not only got cooler but it would start to get dark by the time I was halfway home.  Then the walk was glorious.

I smelled the fireplaces that were needed to get the chill out of houses.  I listened to the leaves crunching under my feet.  I admired the many different carved pumpkins on display on front porches or in big picture windows.  I adored the way the cool crisp air touched my cheeks like sweet tender caresses.  I studied the changing hues of the sky as the sun set and the moon emerged. And I marveled at the beauty and wonder of this spectacular time of year.  

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As I walked towards the door of my house, I could see the warmth of the lights welcoming home.  As sad as I was that my evening reverie was over, I was happy to be home.  Things were far from perfect, but I could count on several things:  that a hearty plate of dinner was waiting for me in the oven, courtesy of my dear sweet  grandmother; that I would get to kiss, hug, cuddle and play with my little brother; that after I ate and did my chores, I could listen to my Bruce Springsteen records and that my dad would watch TV with us every night.

A lot of life has happened to me in the fall, some good, some bad and some heartbreaking.  But through all of it, autumn is simply astonishing in its loveliness year after year.

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The first day of fall is also special to me because it is Bruce Springsteen’s birthday.  The first time I bought one of his records  (Born To Run) was in the fall following the worst summer of my life-the one in which my mother died leaving her 12 year old daughter and the rest of her family behind.  The world had become so dark I forgot what light was like.  But one listen to Springsteen’s album and suddenly all that changed.

In that moment, fall had a new color.  It was so exquisite and bright I never quite saw things the same way again.  That color gave me back a glimpse of hope that maybe I could look forward to a future, one where happily ever after did not end in a horribly final way…..where I did not end up like my father and lose the love of my life at the age of 36.  

I love Bruce Springsteen for many things, but giving me back my hope is the biggest reason why.  It is a debt I will never be able to repay.  The mantra of my life, even after all these years, is from “Thunder Road”:  ” What else can we do now except roll down the window and let the wind blow back your hair.”.  Those words carry me through my life.

Thank you, Boss Man.  Happy Birthday & Happy Fall.

Until next time, fellow Vixens, happy digging and Happy Fall!!! 

Estate Sales, Explorations & An Exquisite Anniversary

Hello, Vixens!!!  How have you been?

I have been avoiding the heat of these final weeks of summer by staying inside in the A/C to either work or unpack.  But when you are as bad of a procrastinator as I am, time goes by even quicker than usual (or so it seems).  This is where I started-with a mountain of boxes in my living room:

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I left the bedroom and kitchen clutter free so I could function and live in them while I went thru the boxes (and because I know how slow I am!!!  LOL)  Those two rooms are not close to being set up yet either, but at least they are box free.  I really want things livable by the end of next month so I am ready to celebrate the arrival of fall (HOORAY!!!).  So what did I choose to do this weekend with a ton of unpacking still left to do?  Of course, I hit some estate sales!!!

I have not indulged that much this summer for the obvious reasons, and I was getting stuck in my head between wanting things in my apartment to be perfect and getting lost in the details of it all.  So my solution was to clear my mind by getting out & exploring the new state I live in.  I originally had plans to go to the Bridgewater County Fair  but the weather was still a little too hot for me, so I decided to wait until next month before attending any fairs.

GPS took me to the first sale through the beautiful back roads of CT.  It was so nice to be amongst nature instead of just looking at other cars and cement.  Here is a picture I took from the car at a red light:

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It was my view for most of the ride.  Just beautiful.

I also passed this tiny little cemetery.  Have I ever told you how much I love cemeteries?  They may represent death, but they are always so peaceful and showcase such beautiful craftsmanship on the stones, especially the older ones.  Some tell you a family’s history, or contain poetry or bible verses.  But all of them tell you someone was loved and remembered, which is the nicest part of all to me.

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At the  first two sales I did not see anything I wanted, so I just enjoyed looking around and being back in the game.  However, at the last sale I went to I found these beautiful pieces of silverware, including a few ice tea spoons to add to my collection.  It is not a complete set, but I do not mind since I love the pattern.  And all these pieces (plus 6 knives not pictured) were only $10!!!

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After my purchase, I went to CVS for a snack.  I am obsessed with their Kettle Corn and lucky for me it was on sale so I stocked up!!!

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I also took some time to admire all their fall candles.  Isn’t it great how you can buy your fall decorations and Halloween candy at the same time you buy your back to school items???  NOT LOL!!!

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After that I traveled around aimlessly for a while longer and came upon one of my FAVORITE places in the ENTIRE  world:  Stew Leonard’s!!!

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The first time I went to this chain was last November but that was at their Yonkers location.  The one above (in Danbury) is less than 15 minutes from my apartment!!!  It could get me into trouble, but this weekend it gave me a great dinner from their hot buffet and some fruit and vegetables for later in the week.  If you have never been and there is one in your area, you MUST GO!!!  Their nickname is the “Disneyland of Dairy Stores”!!!

Sorry for the quality of the pictures, but I took them on my iPhone because it was a little too hot to carry around my SLR.

No part of this blog was sponsored.  I am just sharing my weekend with you.  🙂

So, have you been to any estate sales lately???

Also, today marks the 40th anniversary of the release of one of the greatest rock albums of all time, Bruce Springsteen’s “Born To Run”.  This album changed my life.  I believe the last song on the record, “Jungleland” is still the greatest song I have ever heard.  And when all else fails, I remember a quote from the first song on the album, “Thunder Road” which always seems to help me find my way again:  “What else can we do now except roll down the window and let the wind blow back your hair.”  Amen.

To commemorate this landmark album’s anniversary, Backstreets.com is selling the poster below.  Too cool!!!  And all net proceeds will go to WhyHunger.  Even cooler!!!

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Photo courtesy of Eric Meola.

Until next time, Vixens, happy digging & happy listening!!!

Happy Birthday Boss Man!!!

Photo courtesy of Eric Meola.

Happy birthday to one of my heroes, Bruce Springsteen.

Before I discovered his music, my world was so dark I forgot what light was like.  Then I bought the “Born To Run” album and heard the words that changed my life:  “What else can we do now except roll down the window and let the wind blow back your hair.”

Thank you for every note of every song.  What you have given me, let alone the world, is immeasurable.

B-R-U-C-E!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Photo courtesy of americanicons.com.

“You can’t start a fire without a spark…….”

One month after seeing him induct the E Street Band into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, I was lucky enough to see Bruce Springsteen and company in concert at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, CT (please forgive the poor picture quality…..I was in the last row and the lighting was fighting me!!!).

Bruce and the band were in their usual exquisite form, performing classics like “The Promised Land”, “Born to Run” and “Dancing in the Dark” to sublime covers of Gary U.S. Bonds’ “Quarter to Three” and the Isley Brothers’ “Shout”. But my favorite moment of the night? A beautiful acoustic version of “Thunder Road” by Bruce, his guitar and his harmonica-with accompanying vocals by the audience. Sublime. Special thanks to the Rhode Island guy sitting next to me for making the night extra fun.

A Springsteen concert is like a family reunion. You get together with people you did not know you were related to, but once you discover you are family, you party. And dance. And sing. To some of the best music ever made!!!

B-R-U-C-E!!!