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Archive for the ‘Ohio’ Category

If you missed the beginning of this list you can find it here.

I’m realizing that this list could go on for days, so we’ll see what happens. I hope you enjoy learning about what a wonderful mother and person my mom was.

 J Perkins 90th Birthday

11. Saturday was usually Mom’s shopping day. She didn’t learn to drive until she was in her 50’s, so when we were young she depended on Dad to take her to the A & P grocery store on the weekends. Can you imagine only being able to go to the store once a week with 8 hungry mouths to feed? She did a great job of stocking up to make things last for the week, but I remember drinking powdered milk at times either because she couldn’t afford to buy more or she couldn’t get to the grocery store. I’m guessing her weekly trips were also a time of solitude that she looked forward to, but sometimes she’d allow one of us to go with her. Those were precious times when she let us help her choose food for the week and maybe even get a treat.

12. Mom would sometimes bring home delicious fresh rye bread, deli meats and cheeses on shopping day. They never lasted much more than a day because they were favorites for the whole family. That’s where I discovered my love for a good deli meal. We had Munster, Colby, Cheddar, Longhorn, Swiss and American cheese with fresh sliced Ham, Turkey, Roast beef, Braunschweiger and more. In the summer sometimes we’d add giant slices of Beefsteak Tomatoes and fresh lettuce from my grandmother’s garden. Mmmm!

13. As the family grew, Mom and Dad gave up their bedroom so that all of us kids could have one. They converted the living room to a sleeping area at night and added a sliding door for privacy. They kept their clothes in my oldest sister’s room. I imagine that was quite a sacrifice since they had no place to get away until we were all asleep in bed.

14. She often planned a once a year summer day trip as the sole adult with all of us kids to the northern Ohio amusement park, Cedar Point. We’d get up early in the morning and walk a block or so to the highway to catch the bus heading for Sandusky, then ride a ferry boat from Sandusky across the bay to the park. We spent the whole magical day riding thrill rides, seeing musical variety shows, and traversing the skies on the overhead sky ride. She always packed a substantial lunch for us, then later in the day she’d buy those famous Momma Berardi’s homemade French Fries and salt water taffy to hold us over. We’d stay as long as possible to squeeze out every drop of fun until either my dad came after work to pick us up or we caught the last bus for home.Vintage Cedar Point

15. Mom let us choose what kind of cake we wanted for our birthday and I often requested freshly baked Angel Food cake with strawberries and whipped cream. I can taste it now!

Angel Food cake with strawberries

photo by Lacy DeVeney

16. In August of each year she took each of us separately on a school clothes shopping trip – I recall riding that morning bus in the other direction this time – to the Midway Mall in Elyria – just Mom and I, eating lunch at the restaurant in the mall and buying new shoes and clothes for the upcoming school year. This was probably my favorite day of the year.  Not because I was shopping, but because I got to have my mom all to myself for an entire day!Midway Mall in Elyria Ohio circa 1970's

17. A limited budget and endless creativity brought forth unique homemade Halloween costumes for us each year. I wouldn’t be caught dead in one of those unimaginative store-bought ones.

18. Halloween parties at the Vermilion-on-the-Lake (VOL) Clubhouse were organized by her. She dressed as a witch and made witches’ brew using dry ice. I remember dunking for apples, fishing for prizes with a clothes pin on a string, costume contests and so much more.Vermilion-on-the-Lake Clubhouse

19. There was a Christmas play one year, written by my sister, Sharon and produced by Mom at the VOL Clubhouse with the neighborhood kids. The stage background was painted by Wayne Crozier, complete with his signature mouse hiding in the scene.

20. Each year she creatively decorated our 5 foot silver aluminum Christmas tree with matching colored glass balls. Since there would inevitably be breakage in the process of unpacking and packing the delicate glass, the following year she’d buy a set of a different color, then the 3rd year she’d use a combination of the previous years. The tree was often perched on top of a table up and out of the way of little hands and active pets. You can see a sliver of the tree in the background below. I remember spending what seemed like hours sitting in the living room gazing at the ever changing tree with the colored light wheel casting shadows on the walls and ceiling. It was mesmerizing!Jaye at Christmas

Looking over these memories I can see so many things that I learned from my mother. How to use my creativity in decorating, sewing, having fun. How to shop wisely, how to plan ahead for special activities, the importance of saving where needed, but splurging once in a while…so many lessons that I still use today. I’m so thankful for her giving and teaching spirit.  What a gift it was!

There’s a bit more to come, so stay tuned.  Thanks for reading!

Does this bring to mind some things that you’re most thankful for about your mother?

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While on a recent trip to Vermilion, Ohio I stumbled upon a quaint little shop that stole my heart.  Something about the warm wooden furniture and the subtle colors of the plaid woolens at The Chairmaker and Friends made me feel right at home.

The Chairmaker and Friends Store Vermilion Ohio
The owner, Garrett Aston creates amazing hand crafted Windsor chairs, tables and other finely detailed furniture and accessories.  The kind of pieces that stop  you in your tracks and make you want to run your fingers across their glass-like surfaces.  The quality and beauty of his works of art make my heart ache with appreciation.

Antique Table at Chairmaker

Wouldn’t you just love to have this cubby cabinet?  I can think of a million things that I could use it for.

Cabinet with cubbies

Katie Allman also offers a variety of reasonably priced rug hooking classes at the store.  They keep a stock of gorgeous woolens that can be purchased for the classes or other uses.

Woolens at Chairmaker and Friends

Rug hooking room

On the way back through the store I spotted these adorable patchwork cats.  Since we recently said goodbye to our favorite cat, I decided I could “adopt” one of these for our home.  The navy one now greets us when we walk in the family room.

Patchwork Cat Pillows

Take a look at this wood working shop.  A carpenter’s dream, I’d say.  I love the smell of sawdust in a place like this.  It reminds me that furniture is being lovingly created one unique piece at a time.  Garrett also mentions that he holds wood-working classes. How cool would that be!  He also offers refinishing and various types of furniture repair and restoration for your cherished heirlooms.  Chair building workshopI only wish I lived closer to this shop.  It’s 2000 miles away from my home, so I won’t be able to get there very often.  If you live in northern Ohio I hope you take advantage of your proximity to this wonderful shop and maybe take a class or two.  It’s a gem!

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Here are a few more favorite pics and a link to all my pictures from my trip to Vermilion.

Unfortunately, they’re not in any kind of order and there are quite a few, but if you look at them in a slideshow you can set the speed so it goes pretty fast. Some have captions and some don’t. I got tired of doing them and wanted to get these out before the end of the year. Some will probably seem kind of random…doorknobs and such, but these are little pieces of my aunt’s cottage that are great memories for me. I hope you enjoy some of them!

There are some very cute ones of my niece and nephew (Sharon’s grandkids). Kids are always so adorable!

I look forward to hearing from you too.

Left to right (youngest to oldest) me, Sharon, Pat, Diane.

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Things I love about the Cottage:

The cottage is one of my favorite places. There’s so much to know about it and so much to see that I’ll have to do it in several installments. When we were back in Vermilion this time we made some new discoveries.

This watercolor below was painted by a neighbor in 1961 (when I was 3 years old). It depicts my grandmother’s fruit and vegetable stand that was just down the road from the cottage. That’s how their family made a living and probably why she had so many kids. She was an amazing gardener with a huge farm full of everything delicious…acres and acres of fresh sweet corn, watermelon, turnips, apples, peppers and dozens of other healthy treats. I used to stay with her and my cousin, Karen on the farm for a few weeks every summer. It was heaven! Even though this painting is far from professional, it brings back wonderful memories of her place.

But I digress…this is supposed to be about the cottage.

Here are just a few of the things that I love about the place:

LURES: My uncle has a boat and loves to fish on the lake. He used to take us out when we were kids. You can see that he has all of his lures hanging on the wall at the top of the stairs for anyone who comes to visit and wants to use them.

DOORKNOBS: The house is filled with working vintage doorknobs! This one is their front door. I have more pics of the knobs, but won’t bore you with those. Once I get all my pics online, I’ll link so you can see everything.

CHERRIES: My aunt & uncle’s last name is Cherry, so the kitchen is filled with bunches of vintage cherry decor. This tray is just one example.

LOVE NOTES FROM OUR HOSTS: Over the years as my aunt & uncle having lovingly cared for and shared the cottage, they’ve discovered all the important do’s and don’ts that keep it the special place that it’s become. This bulletin board is a sampling of the loving notes from our hosts that ensure that we all have a grand time and keep the cottage in one piece.

LUCKY STONES: I showed you some of the beach glass collection in my last post and now you need to learn about lucky stones. The stones in the shot glass are called “Lucky Stones”. They’re not actually stones at all. (Click the link to find out more.) If you click on the photo you can see the “L” on each one. We spent many hours in our youth looking for these on the beach. The cottage guests have collected them over the years and we saw several cups full around the house. My aunt says that when you give them to someone else they are a gift of love and become “Lucky Love Stones”. My sweet cousin, Elaine gave me a pair of earrings and a necklace that she made from these. Wow, did I feel loved!

Well, that’s all for now…more to come.

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This is a pic of a beach on the shores of Lake Erie very close to where I grew up in Vermilion, Ohio. We used to call this Tiki Beach. I have no idea why. My long-time friend, Scott took this recently when he went home to visit his dad. Scott grew up in a home overlooking the lake. How cool is that!

It’s so bizarre to think that folks back there are getting snowstorms when we hit 99 degrees this week in Phoenix! I’ve been wearing my summery capris and sandals all weekend and we actually turned on the air conditioner yesterday.

I often miss the seasons and yes, even the winter. I remember as a kid walking out on the frozen lake. It was awesome! Of course, I probably wouldn’t do much of that now, but would certainly enjoy looking out at it from beside a warm fireplace.

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