Saturday, July 23, 2016

Welcome to The Mad Tea Party, 2016!

Hello!! ~ Come on in!

Welcome to the 2016 Mad Tea Party blog hop!

First, I would like to thank Miss Vanessa for once again hosting

this delightful venture!
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Did you just fall through that dusty Rabbit Hole over there?

Oh, Dear!

Settle in with some cookies and tea!

Earl Grey??

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Our Tea Party cookies are courtesy of my sweet friend in Tennessee!

Aren't they wonderful?

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Even my tea pot girls have a Looking Glass!

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Uh, oh... looks like Someone left his hat!

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The Key to....Somewhere!

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Cupcakes won't spoil your supper if they are supper!

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Petunias and buttercream?

Yes, please!

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It is a little known fact that the heady fragrance of Tuberoses

lures folks towards Rabbit Holes, and then....

Well, here you are!

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Look at this little visitor to the Tea Party!

And he thought he was going to be late... (bless him)!

(He has been visiting my porch all week! Carrots and cool water there!)

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Thank you so much for stopping by!

(Be sure to visit all the other revelers, if you can!)

Happy Mad Tea Partying!

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Sunday, July 3, 2016

Fancy Words

The longer I live, the more I realize that I am not nearly as well-read as I once thought.
I love words and their origins, though ~ a "semi-Logophile", if you will ~ but today, on Facebook, someone used a word that I don't recall ever seeing in print (or heard, to my knowledge) before ~ "quotidian". And they used it in a very "quotidian" manner, too (wait for it, if you are as uninformed as I was) ~ they were not being intentionally pompous or anything.

I don't think.

Anyway, I felt kind of dumb (and I am willing to bet I'm not the only one who did, after reading that comment), and I immediately Googled it. (Because that's what I have to do...you would not believe how often I Google things.)

I found the neatest site called "The Every Girl" ( theeverygirl.com ), and the subject was "Using Fancy Words" ~ it made me feel better about the whole thing,
I tell you...so I borrowed the following information ~ (totally THEIRS, not mine ~ hope I am crediting correctly!) ~ (Also, the list of Fancy Words at the bottom must have been discussed at some point, and I was pleased to discover that I knew (and had correctly used) most ~ though not all ~ of them.)

Soooo....I will probably, at least, remember "quotidian"...how about you? Have you discovered and "new" words lately?

(All definitions via dictionary.reference.com )

Fancy Word *EveryGirl*s should know: quotidian

Why we chose this fancy word: 
One of our writing interns, Clarissa Fidler,
stumbled upon this word while reading a New York Times article by David Carr.
She found the well-known writer's unique, poignant perspective on the topic of
plagiarism to be anything but quotidian.

Definition: quotidian (adj.) pronunciation: kwoh-tid-ee-uhn

1. daily
2. usual or customary; everyday
3. ordinary; commonplace


Use this word in a sentence: Martha's quotidian looks and shy demeanor were no match for Zoe's breathtaking beauty and charismatic personality.


Have you been using past fancy words?

insouciant = free from concern, worry, or anxiety; carefree

self-effacing = not drawing attention to oneself; modest

picayune = of little value or account; small; trifling

risible = causing or capable of causing laughter; laughable; ludicrous.

parvenu = someone who has recently acquired wealth or importance but has not yet developed the appropriate manners

usurious = charging illegal or exorbitant rates of interest for the use of money

blandishment = something that flatters or coaxes

innocuous = not harmful

fruition = attainment of anything desired; realization; accomplishment

libation = a pouring out of wine or other liquid in honor of a deity

ubiquitous = existing or being everywhere, especially at the same time

chimerical = highly unrealistic; wildly fanciful

pithy = brief or forceful

euphemism = nice way of saying something unpleasant

loquacious = talkative, babbling

osculation = a kiss

resplendent = having a splendid appearance

pedantic = ostentatious in one’s learning

compendium = summary or account of a subject



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Sunday, January 10, 2016

A Little Creativity...

Because... you know what?

 If I don't post it (or plan to, that's my strategy), I won't do it... 

 There's something about telling someone you're going to DO something

 that kind of "mentally" holds you to it... 

 So, here are a couple of things I've been up to in the last few weeks...

(That I can now post!)

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A while back, I wrote about Miss Sadie Waters (click here for the link)

on my other neglected blog, A Graveyard Rabbit in Southeast Missouri...

A lot happened after that post, "re-Sadie"...

She "introduced" me to someone (well, she did, honestly!)

who also had an interest in her...who had done her doctoral dissertation on Sadie

and her art, actually, after finding long forgotten artworks in a Virginia thrift shop.

Long story.

Connections were made... and I received more photos and information from my

new friend. (A novel, based on Miss Sadie Waters' brief but interesting life, is also in the

works...I will share more information on that when I have it...)

So, thank you, Miss Sadie. 

Above is a photo (greatly enlarged, and taken from my computer screen,

so please excuse the quality...) of a miniature portrait on ivory by Sadie...

I used it as the inspiration for my watercolor of a little "Santa Lucia" girl

 (with her Tomten friend...)

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Following is my "work-in-progress"...

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Initial pencil sketch...
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First watercolor washes...

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Adding details...

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Touches of shimmery metallic gouache to finish...

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Ta-da! I turned it into cards and magnets on Zazzle...always fun!

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You know how I said I wasn't doing any more Fairy Houses?

Never say never... ;)

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Thank you to my husband, who does the roofs...

Much, much more "particular" than I...

(He cuts EVERY "shingle" precisely!)

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Finished!

This house went to a little girl in Michigan...

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Leo looks a little perturbed, doesn't he?

Could it be that he is disgusted that I still have Christmas up?

Or the aftermath of a Catnip Party?

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Tallulah, "post-catnip".

That's all for now...two posts, in just a few days...can you believe it?

Have a wonderful week, all, and be creative!!

(Tell me about it...then you will DO it!)

Love,
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Wednesday, January 6, 2016

The Feast of the Magi...and So Much More!

Happy 2016, all ~ only slightly belated!
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Such a busy December...I really don't want it all to be over, do you?

(Except that after January, I really don't want any Winter,

so Mother Nature needs to hurry...if there's going to be, you know...

Snow!
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The Feast of the Magi, January 6th...
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I have probably written about this trio before, but I will again ~

just in case!

My Mom got these three Wise Men from the 1968 Sears Wish Book...

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 (If you are of a *certain age*, you will really enjoy this website...

It's called "Wishbook Web", and you can get to it by clicking here.)

I went through it page-by page..."I had that, and that, and that..."

But, I digress ~

My Mom paid a whopping $4.94 for the Wise Men,

and I, in my 11-year-old sophistication, thought they were about the

gaudiest things I had ever seen.

What was my Mom thinking? That gold, those rhinestones!

Those weird, un-Christmasy colors...(it was 1968, though).

Tacky.

Now I LOVE them, I absolutely do. 

(Mama had good taste, after all...)

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One of our traditions for today used to be making "Camel Cookies"

with our youngest (a junior in college, now), 

using a copper camel-shaped cutter made by his dad...

This year, I'm just going to write about the Camel Cookies.

(If you'd like to read my 2013 post about them, you can find it here.)

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Tallulah says she isn't ready to take the Christmas tree down!

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Now I have to tell you a little about the rest of my super-busy month!
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Chicago!

We live eight hours away (my daughters, six),

and although I have been through the airport there,

I had never actually been to the city...and now I have been twice,

in as many months!

Our last trip, to celebrate my youngest daughter's birthday,

was especially festive with all the decorations everywhere...

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"Here there be Dragons..."

We stayed at the historic Drake Hotel this time...

dragons are its logo, and even these handsome beasties were

decked out in red and green...

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The florist's delightful window in the hotel...

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The huge tree inside the lobby...

really magnificent!

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The culinary staff created this replica of The Drake in Gingerbread...

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We explored a lot!

If a door was unlocked, it was fair game...

The Gold Coast Room, the morning after a fancy soirée ~

From www.famoushotels.org  ~ "In those early days, Chicago's WGN's first
radio broadcasts were aired from atop The Drake, where the fabulous big bands
of that era played in the Gold Coast Room."



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We also looked around on the purportedly haunted tenth floor,

but didn't see a soul. (Sorry! ;) 

You can read about it here, though...

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The view from our room, looking out towards Lake Michigan...

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The main destination ~ The Music Box Theatre where

"It's a Wonderful Life" was playing...

I've seen a lot of classic movies "on the big screen"

with my daughters, but the "interactive" audience-participation during this showing

was a different sort of experience...sort of like "Rocky Horror"

except with George Bailey instead of Dr. Frankenfurter!

(Bell-ringing when Clarence was on-screen

*Every time a bell rings, an angel gets its wings* ~ hissing when

the dastardly Mr. Potter showed up, and general encouragement for George...)

Next time, we'll know what to expect!

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We also visited the Museum of Science and Industry...

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You know, I didn't think I cared much for LED lights until

I saw this 45-ft. tall delight in the main hall of the museum...

now I have to have a (second) tree with LEDs next Christmas!

Most of the lights were stationary, with just a few twinkling...

Fabulous!!

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Flying-machines overhead...

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This was the main reason for the museum visit...

the girls wanted their Fairy-Mom to see Colleen Moore's Fairy Castle...

and it did not disappoint! ("Early-Fairy"...I think that's my style, as well!)

Click here to read more about it...

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Amazing!

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And then, back home...

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I finally got a "Tom & Jerry" eggnog/punch bowl (and cups) on eBay!

I have wanted one since I saw "The Great Mr. Nobody" (1941)...

this set is from 1941 as well, so I thought that was pretty neat!

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 (They are pretty common, but difficult to find one with the gold trim intact...)

The silver ladle was from my grandparents' 50th anniversary in 1966...

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From our local Susie's Bakeshop...yumm!

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A couple more family traditions... Daddy's was candy canes...he brought them

over every year, as soon as we got the tree up, to put them on with the grandkids...

My grandpa's was giving out little bags of gold-foil-wrapped coins ~

I remember finding some that my Mom had saved (from Grandpa, her father-in-law),

and asking what they were...when she told me they were chocolate, I couldn't fathom why

she hadn't EATEN them! (They were chocolate!) 

So, a nod to both, here in my little display...watched over by my little chalkware

Tomten... (uh, oh...he also has a little bag of COAL there...good thing it's actually

chocolate, as well!)

What family traditions do you all keep?

Wishing all of you a wonderful 2016!

Love,
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