Monthly Archives: September 2012

Hello Blogland!! Hope everyone is having a fantabulous weekend!!! I managed to get the vegetable garden cleaned up for the winter!!! WHEW! I had about 25 small eggplants/courgettes that I oven roasted and froze for yummy stuff later!!I mentioned to my Mom about letting my hair go silver . Remember I had grey hair before she did.  She had a FIT!!! LOL-because me having grey hair will make her look older!!!

Our daughter came up to visit today with some pants for me to hem. She never did catch on to the sewing while at home.  Our son-in-law was busy with homework so he didn’t come along this time. she brought along our furry chihuahua grandchild-Noelle. She will be 1-year-old next Saturday. MrBill absolutely adores her and they play together. Her Divaness gave her the side-eye and stomped off to the bathroom to pout. It’s all about her 24/7!!

Here’s a picture of Julie and Noelle:

Here are all the furry babies together. Her Highness got up and left right after I snapped the picture.

Friday was one of those “Hey I’m out of bed and dressed-what more do you want?” kind of days.  I got a red shirt ( it looks layered but is one piece) like this last spring and when I spotted it in blue recently I snagged it. This is my weekend wear-it’s easy to throw together and looks nice. I always got tons of compliments on the red  top and this blue one proved no different!! The wet spots are water I spilled down myself right before I took my picture. SO graceful am I at 5:30am!!

Top=CRDaniels via Goodwill, Jeans-Lee Rider via Walmart, Shoes-ThomMccan via Kmart

Sunbdays outfit was inspired by the wonder Pam at over50feeling40!  As soon as I saw this outfit I saved a picture of it in my inspiration file. I had similar pieces so I wanted to try it out! Here is Pam in her fabulous outfit:Here I am in my rendition. I had loads of compliments today about it. Everyone liked the mossy/forest green with leopard and many commented they would’ve never put those colors together. Thank you Pam for the seeds of an outfit I will definitely wear again!

Blazer-CJBanks via goodwill, Top-JonesNewYork via Goodwill, Pants-Lee Rider via Walmart, Shoes-Clarks via Goodwill, Purse via Goodwill

I was going to change out my red purse but I really liked it with this outfit for a pop of color. The shoes were brand new for only $3!!! For CLARKS!!

I’m linking up with Patti for Visible Monday! There will be no monday Makeover this week as I have the Town Council meeting tomorrow nite. See y’all Tuesday!




Hello Blogland!!! I hope everyone has been having a faboo week!!! It’s been pretty quiet here on the menopausal runway! Trying to get the never-ending mending pile done. Now I have a pile of hubster’s dress pants to alter. All of the waistbands need to come out an inch-reality has set in and he realizes he was way too thin! (Like I’ve ever had THAT problem-LOL) Thankfully I spent a few months working in the alteration department of a high-end custom suit manufacturer many years ago. (Friend worked there and they needed someone only temp while another was out on medical leave.) I learned loads about alterations and sewing working on $2000+ suits (in 1985 dollars!!)

On to the fashion parade. Monday’s outfit involved pattern mixing and got some raised eyebrows from the sartorially challenged at work. The pants are a navy and white pinstripe and the blouse is a navy and white mini gingham. I liked how they worked together. The blouse is Basic Editions via Kmart. I LOVE it–got it 3 years ago and brought one in every color (hot pink check, navy check & aqua check) They fit well, wear well and wash well. At  $12.99 on sale they’ve been worth every penny! Actually Kmart’s line Basic Editions has some nice stuff. I need to see if they have these fitted poplin blouses in any colors I NEED this fall!! I scored the navy Capezio flats never worn at Goodwill for $3! They are like wearing bedroom slippers comfortable!! I’m also sporting a navy, white and raspberry buttonflower by MeganMae on my shirt collar.

Pants and cardigan-Goodwill, blouse-Kmart, Shoes-NEW Capezio flats via Goodwill for $3!!!  Vintage Cherub on pearl pendant-thrifted

Tuesdays outfit was my Ode to Autumn ensemble!! It’s the most wonderful time of the year!! The outfit is all thrifted! The necklaces are vintage carved bone. I thrifted the Clarks wedge mary-janes(can’t see the strap) unworn last spring for $3!! I’m wearing a gorgeous beaded bracelet gifted by the amazing Vix!

Jacket & pants-CJBanks, Top-JonesNewYork, Shoes-Clarks
Everything is thrifted

On Wednesday I broke out another pair of the shoes I thrifted last weekend. They are never-worn Naturalizer ballet flats. They are so soft but the little piece of elastic-while not too tight, came across one of my Fibromyalgia Tenderpoints (these are places where the nerves get jumbled and irritated and cause pain or weird muscle contractions) It made my toes like cramp and curl weird all day. I’ve been studying the shoes and I think I may be able to remedy it. And if not-oh well $3!

Trousers-Goodwill, Cardigan-Mission Thrift, Top-Kohls

And now to the silver fox part of the post. I’ve been going grey since I was 15. I had grey hair before my mom did!! Both my sister and I take after our dad who was snow-white by age 25. Nothing cool like that for me (more blotchy and scattered) so hair color has been my friend for many a year. I’ve been red, platinum, dark brown, you name it, through the years. I’ve been seriously considering just letting it go natural and doing some research into that.

I absolutely adore the stunning Jamie Lee Curtis! She’s my age and has aged naturally and beautifully. AND she got to have a romance on NCIS with my TV Boyfriend Mark-lucky woman!!! This is my inspiration:

Love the haircut, love the color!!! I talked with my hairdresser about it and she told me by the look of my very visible roots that I am probably %100 silver now!!  We’ve developed a transition plan for the next 6 months. I start using the wash out in 24 shampoos color in the interim as it grows out. We are also going to keep it cut in a pixie like Jamie Lee’s to help the process.  I’m going to have fun with the temporary colors and maybe do a bright red or dark chocolate. Why not??

Here’s the debut of the new spiked ‘do!! It’s easy to maintain and style in the morning. Got a lot of compliments on it today!

Trousers-Thrifted, Top-Kohls, Cardigan-Thrifted, Purse-Thrifted, Choker-Thrifted, Pendant-Vix, Shoes-Payless

The pants are a glen plaid with a thin stripe of burgundy/oxblood. I had a gift certificate to Kohl’s and found the ruffly tank top on sale in the burgundy color. I brought the same top in black and dark coral orange at the beginning of summer and I loved them for layering. Fancier then a plain tank and the ruffles camouflage all the bumps and lumps. I also got one in a beautiful teal blue.  I planned on wearing a pair of dark brown Bandolino booties I thrifted new last spring but I was still having the Fibro cramping pain issues in my toes so my trust Payless loafers came out. They are almost like orthopedic shoes in comfort.

I am linking up for the Burgundy Party at Everything Just So and The Rich Life On A Budget. I managed towear it twice this week!!

Off to watch XFactorUS!!!! Chat with y’all on Sunday!!



Hello Blogland!! Welcome to another Makeover Monday where I share how I remake and refashion thrifted stuff! The ugliest thing can always have potential to be amazing with a little imagination!

Today I’m sharing how I used some spray paint to make accessories for my kitchen. I painted and “redecorated” last fall on a BUDGET!! Thrifted stuff and spray paint were my weapons of choice.

This time I used my second favorite spray paint color-Rustoleum 2X in Colonial Red. I also added some black dry brushing from an ancient can I had lying around.

First up was the island. I thrifted this new in the box for $20. I had priced similar ones for $150+. Yeah-that wasn’t happening.

There’s a hilarious story behind it. I got it at a yard sale two sisters were having. They had moved their parents over a year ago into a senior apartment. They told me their folks had so much stuff it took them 3 months after moving to clear the house out to sell. A year later they find a key to a storage unit at their parents new apartment. A HUGE storage unit they knew nothing about. One sister said when they rolled the door up she started crying and the other started cussing!!

The unit was STUFFED with boxes of random things like neatly folded plastic grocery bags, butter tubs, knick-knacks, clothing. Seems their parents had gotten it during the moving process and had been squirreling even more crap away in it. The sister’s were cleaning it out and praying there wasn’t any more secret storage units! Evidently their parents had brought this island which wouldn’t have fit in their apartment. Sister #1 said it was probably on sale and her parents can’t resist the magic words!! LOLOLOL

Anyway–I got it for $20!! It was supposed to be white but I spray painted and dry-brushed all the parts before I assembled it. I added some trim and beadboard I had on the back as the backer board was really flimsy. As I was assembling it I found one door too warped to use so I made a curtain which works much better!!!

I have this really odd space over my pantry that begged for SOMETHING. The ceiling is sloped and you can’t put anything too heave up there. Plus it’s not easy to access. I saw these cool large tins online for a ridiculous price (like $50 EACH) I got to thinking-hey I can do that!! I collected a bunch of popcorn and other tins at thrifts and yard sales for pennies. I sprayed the tops black and the bottoms Colonial Red and dry-brushed them. I then printed some vintage French labels off from The Graphics Fairy (FREE) on some antique looking paper and antiqued it up even more. Some spray glue and WAH-LAH–fancy tins for a FRACTION of the cost (I think it came to maybe $5 total for all of them!)

As I was on a roll with the red spray paint I spiffed up some odds and ends I thrifted to continue the “theme”.

The canisters at the top (there are 4) were disgustingly FILTHY. It took a lot of scrubbing to even discover there was copper punched panels. One was missing the lid-but I decided to stack them on top of the cabinets to fill in the space so I only used the smallest lid anyway.  Bertha & Beulah are vintage toaster covers that now sit on a thrifted bookstand.  The red & white stove and washing machine on the red shelf are vintage salt & pepper shaker sets. The teapot lamp was the most hideous fake gold mess-but for $1 it had potential. Some paint, re-wiring and a new shade covered in a vintage feedsack dot brought it to new life!

I love to cook and have a ridiculous amount of utensils. I had them in a crock but it was overflowing! I found this wooden CD/Cassette holder for $1. Painted it and turned it on its side and it’s the perfect way to organize my toys!

I also collect shaped cutting boards. I needed a way to corral the herd and keep them accessible. I found this shelf and re-did it to sit on the counter. It originally hung on the wall and had this hideous fake stained glass insert of a goose with mauve and slate blue accents (SO tacky 80’s country) I just popped it on out!

I hope you’ve enjoyed Makeover Monday!!!!

I’m linking up with Lakota’s TAH-DAH Tuesday!!

I’ll be back Thursday with some outfit posts!! Tomorrow nite I have an appointment with my TV boyfriend Mark Harmon and the season premier of NCIS!!! Hubba hubba!!



Hello Blogland!! I hope everyone has had a wonderful weekend!! I’ll be sharing the last of the photo’s from the Heritage festival last weekend.

Soldiers during the Civil War had it really rough, especially those on the Confederate side. Lack of food, exhaustion,  poor sanitation, having to sleep out in the weather all contributed to the spread of “camp diseases”. Almost as many soldiers died from these as were killed or injured. Disease such as Typhoid, malaria, dysentery, Scurvy, and other nutritional disorders took their toll. The lack of effective medicines and treatments made it difficult to contain these diseases.

Another less “talked about” hazard to the soldiers were rampant STD’s. “Camp-followers”and city brothels offered ample encounters with prostitutes. Sexually transmitted diseases, primarily syphilis and gonorrhea, were common in the armies of both North and South. Among white Union troops, there were 182,800 cases of both diseases combined. There were no effective treatments, and there would be none until long after the war. Among the techniques they tried were rest, diet, injection of various metals in to the urethra, internal use of mercury compounds and even the application of mercury vapor on the surface of the body. Reports that nearly one-third of post-war deaths in veterans’ homes were due to late-stage venereal disease show the futility of these treatments.

Here is a collage of pictures of how the soldiers lived during this time.

The Pry House, which was McClellans/Union headquarters during the battle, had many displays of medical equipment and a field hospital set-up used during the era. As I had noted before, Clara Barton, founder of the Red Cross and nursing as we know it, came into prominence during the battle here. Battlefield medicine and emergency medicine as we know it today came into being during the Civil War. Triage was first used during the Battle of Antietam.

Operating “room” and equipment used during the Civil War.

Many of you know I work as a project engineer on an army base. The base I work on is part of the Army Medical Command. We supply the military with medical supplies and develop new cutting edge medical equipment. I was very proud to see a display at the Pry Museum of a current battlefield ambulance and emergency equipment juxtaposed with a Civil War Era ambulance. The strides made in emergency and battlefield care is amazing!!

Much of the modern day equipment was developed and designed on my base.

Lastly I’m going to share photo’s of the Heritage Festival that was held in town. Lot’s of food and craft vendors with musical entertainment.

1. Town Hall
2. Musical Group playing Civil War Era instruments and songs
3. Vendors
4. Food street–this is the street I live on–this is looking towards home. The guy with the grey shirt and cute butt is the hubster!

And now onto the fashion portion of the post. Broke out a maxi and “autumnized” it. I’ve decided to put them away until next spring so I’ll be excited to see them again-like new clothes. Plus I am planning to add more via thrifting or sewing over the winter.

I freshen it up with a thrifted leopard purse and a leopard fedora I found on sale at Kmart.

Here’s the accessories:

Shoes-Naturalizer via Goodwill (never worn $4) Bracelets-Burlington coat Factory, Amber necklace-gift from the amazing Vix!

I can’t forget some gratuitous puppy photo’s!! I have a picture of the ever-elusive Mr.Bill snoozing.

And of course, I can’t forget Her Highness. I’ll be glad when some of the celebrity ‘tude wears off!!

I’ll be linking up for Visible Monday and Monday Mingle!!

Stop by tomorrow for Makeover Monday and see what can be done with popcorn tins, yardsale finds and some spray paint!!



Hello Blogland!!!  I hope everyone has been having a wonderful week!! It seems like Fall has finally arrived here in Maryland!!!

My little “diva star” has certainly let her new fame go to her head!!! She expects me to carry her outside all the time now except for a brief moment to “do her business”. And if I don’t-she just plops herself down and refuses to walk and gives me the stink eye!!! Oh the indignities she must suffer!

Let’s get the outfits out-of-the-way before today’s history lesson! Thanks so much for allowing me to share this with you!

Teal Sweater-Goodwill, Tshirt-Kohl’s, Trousers-Goodwill, Purse-Goodwill, Scarf-Vintage, Shoes-Comfortview

I’m wearing Teal sweater #2–it’s more of a “green” teal then my other one. Little story about the T shirt-I brought some for layering from Kohl’s on sale last month. They have that sticky strip on the front that leaves a residue so I pre-washed them according to instructions. They ALL shrank in length but got baggier in width. Now I KNOW I haven’t suddenly gotten taller or skinnier in real life. I wound up returning them all today. The clerk told me that she has had that problem with the Croft & Barrow Tshirts. She says it can happen based on different colors-some shrink in length and others don’t. Evidently depends on the manufacturers lot. Just wanted to pass that on to anyone who might be buying the T’s at Kohl’s.

Jacket-CJBANKS via Goodwill, Tshirt-JoneNewYork via Goodwill, Jean-Lee Riders via Walmart, Pin-vintage

I love this jacket-it reminds me of all the chrysanthemums in the fall. I am going to taper it in a bit at the waist as it’s a tad baggy. Got loads of compliments–it’s just such a happy jacket!!

And now on to our history portion of the post.  First up are pictures of the Antietam National Cemetary. They began burying soldier’s here after the battle in 1862. It became officially a National Cemetary in 1870-making it one of the oldest.

Antietam National Cemetery, covers 11.36 acres  and contains 5,032 interments (1,836 unidentified), adjoins the park. Civil War interments occurred in 1862. The cemetery contains only Union soldiers from the Civil War period. Confederate dead were interred in the Washington Confederate Cemetery within Rosehill Cemetery, Hagerstown, Maryland; Mt. Olivet Cemetery in Frederick, Maryland; and Elmwood Cemetery in Shepherdstown, West Virginia. The cemetery also contains the graves of veterans and their wives from the Spanish-American War, World War I and II, and the Korean War. The cemetery was closed to additional interments in 1953. Two exceptions have been made, the first in 1978 for Congressman Goodloe Byron and the second in 2000 for the remains of USN Fireman Patrick Howard Roy who was killed in the attack on the USS Cole. The Antietam National Cemetery was placed under the War Department on July 14, 1870; it was transferred to the National Park Service on August 10, 1933.

The poem “Bivouc of the Dead” is on plaques around the cemetery. This poem is found at every National Cemetary. It is quite moving.

One of the highlights of the weekend was held across the street from my house. My neighbor is an avid Civil War buff and historian/re-enactor. He had a group called “The Confederacy of Union General” give a presentation. These gentleman portray famous Union Generals, Majors, etc. They give a short lecture and then answer audience questions in character. It was so fascinating and informative!!! You learned so much and I am in awe of their knowledge of their character.

They also had President Lincoln as portrayed by James Getty. He is a direct descendent of Presisdent Lincoln and is known world-wide for his portrayal at places like Ford’s Theater and Gettysburg. He was AMAZING. You truly forgot that he was only an actor and not the real deal. One question was how did he handle the death of their son Willie in January/February 1862 with all that was burdening him with the country at war. His answer brought tears to our eyes-and his. He talked how horrible it was to lose a child, and how Mrs. Lincoln went into a deep depression. She was never the same. He spoke of how Willie was interred in a friends crypt in Washington until they went back to Illinoise. He told about how he would go to the crypt and have them pull out his casket and stand beside it to talk to Willie so he wouldn’t feel alone. He genuinely conveyed the grief of a father telling it.

Below are historical photo’s of President Lincoln meeting the generals after the battle at Antietam.

I have truly enjoyed sharing this with everyone. Have any of you guessed that I was a teacher in the past?? Yup-it’s coming out!!




Hello Blogland!!! Wow, what a dreary day after the beautiful weekend we’ve had. We got almost 4 inches of rain so far today!!!Miss KaeKae is now an internet STAR!!! I did a search for vintage Antietam images to use in my post and her picture is on the front page of the search!!! Now she will be unbearable and make more diva demands!! I snipped it to save and share!

Last Friday I debuted the handmade vintage blouse I thrifted a few weeks ago. I’m thinking by the style and fabric it was late 60’s or early 70’s and probably made for a guy. I didn’t care-I LOVED it!! I had so many compliments about it. I’m going to draft a pattern off of it to make more. I paired it with thrifted wide-leg jeans, clogs and love beads-had a flashback to High School!!!! The purse I recently thrifted and while gorgeous is a total pain to use. It’s narrow and hard to get stuff into. But no fear–I have a makeover idea for it!!

Feelin’ Groovy!!! This is how I dressed mid 70’s in high school!

I decided to be somewhat casual today as it was gonna be WET and MISERABLE!! I started out in a white button front blouse and my black boyfriend blazer-but got too hot (menopause sucks) I then decided to change out to my thrifted knit glen plaid blazer. I was STILL sweating like a pig!! Off went the blouse and on went a black tshirt. The hubster watched all of this in total confusion-LOL. I adore the knit blazer–it’s a ponte knit with black velvet trim and is like wearing a tshirt!!! Everyone loved it!

Jean-Lee Rider via Walmart years ago, Black T-Goodwill, Jacket-Thrifted, Ankle Boots-thrifted for $2 maybe 10+ years ago, Buttonflower by MeganMae

Since I’ve been using a homemade shampoo bar on my hair it’s gotten crazy curly!!! The humidity today was causing it to go wild!!

And now to our history portion of the post. I am going to share photo’s from the tour of the battlefield. They had shuttle buses and they stopped at certain points where a ranger or Living History person gave a lecture about what occurred there. It was FACINATING!!

We started first at what is known as “The Cornfield”, which was part of D.R.Miller’s farm. The battle began in the foggy dawn and raged for several hours that morning. The cornfield was but stubble when it was over strewn with THOUSANDS of dead and dying men.

The cornfields look like they did that morning in 1862

The day after.

Union Artillary and Infantry

What the Union soldiers saw looking out from North Woods/Poffenberger Farm

The Mumma barn, house and outbuildings

The Mumma farm after the battle

The next stop was a farm lane called “The Sunken Lane” but forever now known as “Bloody Lane”. The farm lane was in like a trench with high sides. The Confederates lay in their and decimated the Union soldiers until the Union overpowered them. It became like an open grave full of bloody bodies.

“Bloody Lane” today and the lane off it to another farm.

Bloody Lane the day after-now a mass grave.

We then traveled to the location of the last skirmishes of the battle-Burnside Bridge. This location is very near my house. The Confederates were on the ridge above and it took hours for the Union Army to cross the bridge  and take the high ground. From there they ran the Confederates back into Sharpsburg proper.

On the ridge above Burnside Bridge and Antietam Creek

Here is Burnside Bridge as seen after the battle.

the Burnside Bridge

Our last stop was The Pry Farm, which was the Union General McClellan’s headquarter’s during the battle.  It also served as a field hospital.

The Pry House. They had a wonderful Civil War era herb garden. The Pry family eventually left this farm for Tennessee as their children were so traumatized by the battle and aftermath.

The Pry house the day after

I’m going to leave the National Cemetary for another post. Below are some more vintage photos taken after the battle. Antietam was the first time there were photo’s taken on a battlefield. Matthew Brady exhibited them in New york City to the shock of the populace, who now had a stark reminder of the price of war.

The dead awaiting burial the day after.

The first picture is of the Lutheran church in Sharpsburg-which had to be torn down. The second picture is of a lone tree on the battlefield. The third picture is of the Dunker Church and the dead.

Thanks to all of you who are allowing me to share this bit of history with you. One of the Living History speakers put the carnage of that day in perspective. There were more casualties that day then the Revolutionary Wart, War of 1812, Mexican-american War and Spanish-American War PUT TOGETHER.

To really put the Civil War’s cost in human life in perspective–770,000 died-2% of the total population of the US at that time. In today’s terms- it would be like losing 7 MILLION soldiers during the Iraq War. Mind boggling!!

Stop by Thursday for some more fashion and history!!



Hello Blogland!!! today I am going to refresh our memories with a little historical background about Antietam/Sharpsburg during the Civil War. This will be the Readers Digest Condensed Version!

This is the view soldiers would’ve seen 150 years ago looking out from the current Visitor’s Center. Little has changed in the landscape.

Maryland was a border state. The population was divided between Unionists(North) and Secessionists(South). Robert E. Lee thought that he could garner new troops and support by invading Maryland. Lee divided his army-sending Stonewall Jackson to Harper’s Ferry to secure the Union Arsenal. The other half marched into Maryland.

The Confederate troops came into Frederick, Maryland. They would travel westward over South Mountain. The battle of South Mountain occurred on September 14th. The locals in Sharpsburg could hear the battle and many fled in fear.

Both army’s settled into position on September 15th and 16th.  There were approximately 87,000 Union soldiers and 45,000 Confederate soldiers. They would meet in battle at dawn on September 17th in a cornfield north of Sharpsburg.

The view from Cemetary Hill to Burnside Bridge

The battle raged all day long. By evening, a total of more than 23,000 men laid dead or wounded on the battlefield. This is the bloodiest one day in American history.

While the Battle of Antietam is considered a draw from a military point of view, Abraham Lincoln and the Union claimed victory.  This hard-fought battle, which drove Lee’s forces from Maryland, would give Lincoln the “victory” that he needed before delivering the Emancipation Proclamation — a document that would forever change the geopolitical course of the American Civil War.

View from the Pry Farm (Union Headquarters) towards the battlefield and Sharpsburg

Antietam Battlefield is considered to be the most pristine Civil War battlefield. When you look out from different points, the landscape looks the same as what the soldier’s would’ve seen 150 years ago.

Although Gettysburg is the more “popular” battlefield, Antietam is the most revered. Because they are still finding remains of the dead to this day, all of the battlefield is considered hallowed ground and is treated as such. Antietam was the second battlefield to be named a National Park in 1890.

Stop by tomorrow and see pictures from the battlefield tour with photo’s taken in the same locations after the battle. Please feel free to leave questions in the comments and I’ll try to answer them for you!