Thursday, January 28, 2016

Good Fences #97 - Tigerton, Wisconsin

Traveling the back roads of Wisconsin, I came across this fence.  I had to take a picture so I could finally link up with you all and the awesome fences you share.  I will admit, here in Wisconsin, our fences are more utilitarian.  Not this one, I want to drive back in the summer and see the water tanks full of flowers.  

Yes, winter does that to our roads...

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.

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Social Media Networking

I'm no expert at networking, however I have learned a few things over this past year.  We all know when something important happens in our community it is on Facebook or Twitter faster than the news...this is true.  

We recently had an amber alert for a child abducted from the Green Bay area, we received a text with all the information and many people shared it to Facebook.  Within a few hours, this little boy was found 2 hours east of Green Bay as a direct result of the information shared.  The networking was a blessing to this family.

The same process can be true for you, your business or your blog.  I will admit, I'm still learning how to share, link, tag and such; but, I'm trying.  I "bucked" social media and Facebook for years.  It was too hard to figure out, not to mention all the drama that often times comes with it.  I finally gave in...even seeds in the ground eventually push their way through the dirt to receive the kiss of the sun.  

Networking for me is about branding myself and building my business.  You might have other reasons.  I use my blog as the medium to do this.  

I am not currently seeking an income from my blog; well, not in the conventional way.  I try to write posts what I feel my customers would be interested in and then I share them on my business Facebook page.  This simple form of networking has increased the interest in what I do and in turn, I've sold items I have posted about this way.  So, I guess my blog is working for my business.  

As far as branding myself; my definition of that, is sharing my interests, experiences, recipes, faith, ideas, lifestyle and such...those blog posts...I share on my personal pages.  

I had to laugh a few Sunday services ago, my pastor mentioned something about eating a good breakfast...he then looks at me and says..."ask Jacky about that...she posts pictures of the most delicious breakfasts on her Instagram."  I do love Instagram!

Another way to network and brand at the same time is to create a group on Facebook.  Just this week I created "Rural Life in Wisconsin."  This group will share tips, ideas, pictures, stories, items for sale - anything that has to do with farming, homesteading and/or rural life.  
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My next step, one I am trying to learn something about, is how to host a blog hop.  If you do this on your blog, I would appreciate any tips on how and where to begin.  I want to call mine,  "Casting Your Pearls" where bloggers can share their advice, tips, recipes, wisdom, projects and things like that.  That's my plan anyway.  Its one of my 50 things to do before I'm 50 - host a blog hop.  

My advice is to just keep plugging away at it.  I know I probably drive my "friends" crazy with all the posts, but that's the game.  I can tell you it is working, as of yesterday, I broke my all time page views record.  I even lost a few followers yesterday.  My views reflect that those who like what you post about will keep looking.   

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin

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Wednesday, January 27, 2016

February Antique Show

Town Hall Trinkets, LLC  will be set up at this show:

My half of the booth will be themed "bits and pieces."  I don't know why I always do themes....I can't help it.  

I will have some nice quilts, blankets, vintage craft supplies - just a bunch of "bits and pieces."  If you like to re purpose with vintage supplies, come check out my booth.  

Here are a few pictures of what I plan to take.

Hope to see some of you there.  

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.  

Wausau Show February 13-14, 2016

Do not miss the opportunity to spend the day searching for antiques or vintage Finds at the Wausau Antique Show & Sale! Over 50 dealers from the Midwest will present quality & diversity in this well-balanced show since 1985.
These select dealers are proud to bring thier finest inventory to sell to advanced and novice collectors. The event is to sell and decorate with antiques and stylish vintage finds with history-related information and learning experinces for the youth plus meeting new and old acquaintances to discuss the fun of finding and adding to your collection. It will be possible to have your crystal and china items repaired "while you wait" at Mary Lou's booth. A clock repairer will be there to assist you with questions you may have concering your clocks, plus he will have clocks for sale.
This show offers a wide variety of inventory with impressive furniture, decoys, hand-tooled copper, militaria, stoneware, silverware, eclectic designs, toys, American country, Vintage Valentines, and more! Plus a chance to win a $50 gift certificate. Lots of free parking and the D.C. Everest concession stand has good food. Admission is $4.50 for both days; under 16 is free. Do not miss this annual event of charm and history; you have only two days to find your treasure at the Wausau Antique Show. Hope to see you there!
Saturday 9am to 5pm, and Sunday 10am to 4pm.
From the North, South, and West, Take highway 39/51 to exit 185. Go North to the 5th light. From the East, take highway 29 to exit 171. The event is located in the Greenheck Field House at the D.C. 
Everest Highschool on 2305 Jelink Ave.
Call 715-355-5144 for more information.

My Grandcritters

I haven't been blessed with any grandchildren yet, but I have been with grandcritters.  Both of our daughters decided to adopt from their local Humane Society.  

Anna and Jon adopted "Frankie" last year.  He recently spent the week with us while they were in Florida.  He is super smart and playful.  Our old farmhouse is rather cold...he found any spot in the sun to sleep in.   

Justine and Josh just adopted a 9 year old Chihuahua, "Picadilly (Dilly)."  She is a friendly little thing.  She begs for treats by sitting on her hind legs and pushing her front paws up and down - really cute.  "Look at me...I want one too..."  

For now, I will be happy with these 4 legged grands. 

If you are looking for a pet, please check your local shelters.  There are some great friends just waiting for you to take them to their forever homes.  Don't be afraid to adopt an older pet - their are no guarantees with a puppy or kitten.  After all, pets deserve our love whether we have them 1 year or 15.  

We only have Dolly now that Minnie passed on.  She has become my dog, she follows me everywhere.  I don't have any plans to add to our family yet - I think I will just spoil her.  

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.  

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Nifty Thrifty Ideas - Vintage Magazines

On my recent "pick" of an old farm house, I was delighted to find boxes of vintage magazines.  A variety of years and labels.  This one is from March of 1946 - almost 70 years ago.  It is in excellent shape.  I tried to find out information about the artist, Alex Rose, but was unsuccessful.  I did see that he is credited with several of the Good Housekeeping covers.  I love this little girl's face, he sure captured her smile and the twinkle in her eyes.  

As I page my way through this issue, I find several interesting ads:  

(More doctors smoke camels....yikes)

This issue is filled with parenting advice and helpful tips:

Romance stories: (this reminds me of my mom and dad)  

Practical living advice:

I appreciate that this issue has quotes from scripture (when is the last time you saw that in Good Housekeeping?!)  

Wait till you read this little gem:  

Charities Eight Degrees 
by: Moses Ben Maimon

Anticipate charity by preventing poverty, assist the reduced fellowman, either by considerable gift, or a sum of money or by teaching him a trade or by putting him in the way of business, so that he may earn an honest livelihood and not be forced to the dreadful alternative of holding out his hand for charity.  This is the highest step and the summit of charity's golden ladder.  

(I love that one)

Cute comics:

This issue has pages of fashion tips, sewing and patterns, recipes and home decorating ideas.  

I post this under my "Nifty Thrifty Ideas" because - it is full of nifty thrifty vintage ideas.  Have we really strayed so far away from practical living that the articles in these old issues aren't applicable?  I think not.  I have enjoyed paging through this issue and plan to try a few of the recipes out.  

The next time you go to a thrift shop, look through the magazines and pick up a few.  The thrifty ideas are priceless.  

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.  

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Monday, January 25, 2016

Nifty to be Fitty - Integrity

I am sharing this post for my "Nifty to be Fitty" post this week.  These post are meant to encourage myself and maybe you, to get back on the healthy lifestyle path.

Have you seen any of the episodes on "From Fit - to Fat - to Fit?"  The show is about personal trainers who gain weight in order to help a client lose weight.  It is an interesting concept.  I am still skeptical, even if a trainer gains 50 pounds and proves they can lose it, I'm not sure they understand the struggle of a food addiction.  An exercise, not so much.  

I'm a smart fatty.  I've lost, gained, lost, gained...I know HOW to loose, that's not the problem.  Obviously, you burn more than you eat.  It's the sticking to it I fail at.

I watched a full episode this weekend.  Something the trainer said to this guy really resonated with me.  He was trying to encourage this guy to keep going on his stair climb.  He said to him "give yourself some integrity (or something like that) - would you let your client down once you gave them your word?"  

Wow, that had me thinking.  I really do pride myself on giving my word, being honest in all I do.   My business and relationships with clients are built on trust.  Referrals have come my way because my conduct reflects this.  

Do I give myself the same courtesy?  Why don't I keep my integrity with me?  I should be treating myself as good as I feel I treat my customers and clients.  

So therefore, Jacky, I will build a relationship of trust with you.  I will show you my integrity.  I will keep my word - my promises - with you.  Jacky, you deserve that!  LIBERATING

I know this sounds simple - but, I am a simple minded person.  If you are struggling with weight loss or even another issue, show yourself the same integrity you show others.  I know I plan to from this moment on.  

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.

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Sunday, January 24, 2016

Chocolate Poke Cake

With one devil's food chocolate cake mix in hand...I searched..."what can I make with a devil's food cake mix."  I found this recipe; the link is here:

I divided the batter into 2 round pans.  I made 1 for church and 1 for our lunch at home.   As I carried the cake into church, I was followed by 2 of my Sunday school girls.  "What's that and when can we eat it?"  

It was easy to make and the chocolate whipped cream...why have I not done this before?   So good.  One piece left and it's for me!  

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.  

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Saturday, January 23, 2016

My "office" This Week - Back Roads of Wisconsin

My experiences from this past week have really inspired me.  I had lunch and fabric shopping with my daughter.  Pho and networking with a super cool "hipster."  Traditional Christmas Cuban meal with my dear friend Magaly.  (No, it wasn't all food that inspired me...remember, "Food is Fuel, Not Friend").  Ending my week with an awesome pick from a 5th generation dairy farm near Tigerton, Wisconsin.    

Now, I do have 2 shows in a row; February 6 and a 2 day show February 13 & 14.  I should be home working on repurposing, painting, digging and marking inventory.  However, this respite from my "duties," has become the recharge I needed for this mid-January, Wisconsin winter.  

I'm so blessed to be able to do what I LOVE.  Here are a few pictures of the "office" this week - back roads of rural Wisconsin in January.

(I was so happy to finally find a fence for TexWisGirl from Run Around Ranch blog hop - next week....)  

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.  

Friday, January 22, 2016

Nifty Thrifty Style - Step 1

Where to begin?  I guess, I need to figure out what my body type is.  I took an online test....I'm a pear.  Other pears include Beyonce', Jennifer Lopez, Kelly Clarkson, Kim in the world, is knowing that helpful!!

So, I googled..."I'm a fat pear, what do I wear?"  Believe it or not, images came up.   These are a few that I liked.

"Chevron Striped Dress~For Beautiful Curves" by cynthia335 on Polyvore:

Tips for Dressing a Pear Shaped Body:

Plus size:

|WEARING| Talbots Duster, Forever 21 Blouse (similar here & here), Vintage Earrings, BCBG Necklace (similar here), H Belt, Mod Cloth Skirt, Zara Bag, Nine West Pumps (kitten heel version here):

Plus Size Fashion:

fat girl fashion - Google Search:

I really like the vintage styles too...

Try a pretty blue frock this Valentine's Day for something different! <3:

Sean Top in Gold Poplin - This versatile short sleeve blouse will electrify your office attire with its unique seaming, cuffed sleeves, and stand up collar. Features a cross-over and darted bust and an inverted back zipper (just like our Doris top) for a sexy, fitted silhouette and the art deco feel of the Laura Byrnes collection. Ideal for smaller bust lines; for the very busty, youll want to size up.:

I found this link very helpful:

Pear shapes need to accent their tops to balance out their bottoms.  Pears, even full figured pears, have a smaller waist and need to draw attention to their smallest area.  Pears may wear fit and flare, pencil skirts, flirty bottoms in dresses and skirts.  Pears should select dark blues, grays, blacks and browns in pants with a flare hem to draw attention away from  their hips.  Basically, a pear should enhance and minimize - we want to show the illusion of an hour glass shape.  

Researching for this post, it became pretty clear to me that the outfits I tend to get the most compliments on, follow these rules.  I have several items that don't follow the guidelines to accent my shape.  I was planning to clean out my closet anyway, learning these tips will make it easier for me to do so.  That will be my next step.  And hey, I have some vintage high waisted "mom" jeans that just might end up on etsy!  

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.  

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Thursday, January 21, 2016

Nifty Thrifty Style

My 2016 word of the year is Nifty:  "fashionable, stylish"

Fashionable and stylish isn't quite the word to describe the items I have hanging in my closet.  Comfortable and warm would be.  I also have love sweaters, the uglier the better. 

It has become apparent to me, thanks to my daughter, Anna, that style and fashion are actually important to the success of my business.  I didn't believe her, as I don't look at who is selling items - rather, what items they are selling.  However, this younger group of customers are very image inspired.  They can't help it, our world - their world - is so defined by social media.  She recently said to me..."mom, you would sell so much more stuff, if you looked cute like those girls over there."  "You have way better stuff and it is cheaper."   It wasn't meant to be hurtful...but, helpful and that is how I took it....once we laughed about it for a bit.  

Truth is, when one is making a decision to add an item to their home decor, they want to know that the person they are buying from knows what is "in," what is "hot."  You may have the best items at a show, but if you look like you just came in from cleaning the barn....they will pass over your booth.  Now, I never look like that, however, I could take more of an interest in how I look - my image.  I do have some personal convictions about my wardrobe and style that need to be considered, but it shouldn't be an excuse for not trying.     

I have been looking at other well dressed full figured women and taking notes.  Trying to figure out what might look good on my body shape, sticking to my convictions and dressing age appropriately.  It all just seems too hard!!

I will still dress comfortable and warm as I do live on a farm in Wisconsin, but I plan to step it up at my shows and events.

These pictures pretty much sum up my style....oh boy, do I have some work to do!  I plan to write posts under "Nifty Thrifty Style" that will show my progress in updating my image.  I would like to add, that it's what's on the inside that counts!     

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.  

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Monday, January 18, 2016

Food is Fuel...Not Friend

I recently had a "light bulb" moment in a simple statement I made to my son-in-law.  He has an abundance of self-control in diet and exercise.  I handed him something I made to taste "don't feel bad if you don't like it."  Justine said, "mom, Josh eats everything and anything I make."   "Why would you eat something you don't like?"  I said.  Then it hit me..."hey, is food just fuel to you?"  Josh nodded his head - yes, food is just fuel.  

For generations - really - food has been our friend.  Most of my family memories circle around a meal or food.  Low income or not, we always had food; homemade food that tasted good!  

My grandma Kincaid's mama passed on when she was just a little girl.  Her dad and brothers were lumberjacks.  They traveled from Kentucky to the "north woods" working in logging camps.  She was responsible for feeding her dad and brothers.  She would set her bread out in the morning before school and run back during lunch to "punch" it down and put in pans so it would be ready to bake when school was over.  She was an excellent cook!

My memories of her home are tables full of cookies, cakes, pies and fried chicken.  We spent many weekends visiting them every summer.  I loved waking to the smell of bacon.  She would fry me some eggs in the know eggs taste so good this way....crunchy bits in the whites!  Yum!  

My grandparents were not wealthy people, however, every Sunday she invited half the church back to eat lunch at her home.  After lunch, she would make up plates for the "old" people, grandpa would drive her over to their homes and she fed them.  Before we returned back to their home, we all went to the nursing home and visited with the "old" people.   Mind you, my grandparents were in their 70's and continued doing this until they passed on. This was EVERY Sunday.  It was her ministry.   

So, it's no wonder I have warm fuzzies around food.  Food has always brought me comfort.  Food has been my friend.  I have been thinking on this since that light bulb moment with Josh.  Food really is fuel.  The purpose of food is to give us energy and keep us going during the day.  

Truthfully, would you put "bad"gas in the engine of your car?  We should be thinking of the best fuel to eat to keep our engines running at optimum levels.  

I'm not saying not to love the food you eat; just not be in love with it.  Being mindful of what I eat, the fuel I add to this old engine has been convicting, in a good way.  

So, for this "Nifty to be Fitty" post, lets remind ourselves that "food is fuel."   Anna sent me a text message the other day..."food is fuel"... it made me laugh!  

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.  

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Friday, January 15, 2016

"It's Nifty to be Fitty" - Smoothie

Do you find yourself hungry mid-morning or mid-afternoon?  Are you in a hurry out the door in the morning, no time to stop and eat?  Want to "hit" one of your cravings for maybe a malt or shake?  Well, I have tip for that.

Make yourself a fruit or veggie smoothie.  Your smoothie is only limited by the contents in your refrigerator, freezer and your imagination.

Protein keeps you full longer - this is a fact.  When I find myself hungry during the day, I try to grab a protein; string cheese, yogurt, peanut butter or hummus on celery.  This really works - you just have to tell yourself....I want this over chips or cookies!

I also enjoy smoothies, while others around me are eating ice cream.   

I have lost, gained and lost myself a half dozen times in my life.  Bad eating habits are hard to break!  In my "Nifty to Fitty" posts, I will try to share my years of "experience" with you while I try to get back on the loss tracks.  

So, here's to getting "fitty."

Blessings from Ringle, Wisconsin.   

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Art & Style - Trending Colors and Design

As the beginning of a repurposing, painting, styling new year - I thought it wise to research what is trending.  It also gives me an excuse to research the internet.  

Living in Wisconsin, it often times takes a year or so for any trend to reach us.  This is the truth.  I believe Pinterest helps expedite this....but, it takes time to change the view of the average customer.  

I was surprised to see that denim is trending.

This reminds me of the cupboard I completed in November.  It ended up looking like an old pair of blue jeans.  It sold to a customer who built a new home with vaulted ceilings.  She has one of those huge barn signs that looks like an American flag on the peak of the wall.  She wants to put this under it and showcase her Americana collectibles.  This leads me to believe...Americana must be coming back too.

Another trend is Folkloric.  That means something based on resembling folklore - the traditions, styles, music belonging to a specific culture.  I LOVE folklore, folk art and now folkloric - so I am happy to see this trending.  I consider myself a folk artist - so, yay!

This reminds me of the coffee table I painted back in July.  This was the piece that started my "knock down" style...quite by accident...but, I love it.  This table sold and now resides in Massachusetts. 

This was the second knock down piece....also, folkloric in style and design.  People were actually "fighting" over this one.  


During our family Christmas, Anna and I spent some time painting.  I was inspired to create this...


Al thinks she looks like an angel from Peru...I am working on other "ethnic" looking ladies as well.  

So, I guess without even knowing style has been right on trend.  Shocking - as I usually am last to jump on the old the old hay wagon.  This past year has stretched my creativity, branding, networking - self,  into a more decisive artist.  I'm just going to roll along with my ideas and see if my customers like them.  

Thanks to all of my awesome customers who inspire me in all ways.