Posts Tagged ‘Old Things’

Viola was a local  Virginia “character” who took pride in having an independent streak.  She was forthright and fiercely opinionated, and loved beautiful things.  And she was a beloved friend whose gifts over the years are things I still cherish.  They were old gifts she found in antique stores and one-of-a-kinds for the young me.

Sadly, we lost Viola, but there are wonderful reminders of her all over my home.  She was a friend who put extra thought into gift giving.


  • A beautiful scalloped edged platter I still use to serve cookies.

  • An art deco bowl that makes bananas seem  brighter and yellower (is yellower a word?).


  • A lacy edged vase for short stemmed flowers to make into elegant arrangements.


I just read an article about how young people don’t like old stuff anymore. They don’t want Grandma’s china or sterling silver that has to be polished.

Who needs gold edged dinner plates for fast food or pizza delivery?  And who wants cutlery you can’t put into a dishwasher?

I concede there is some logic in this thinking albeit the younger generation seems to be forfeiting an atmosphere of beauty, charm and grace.

But do they know about the feelings you can get from holding or using something with a history?

A beautiful old serving dish is never really old.

And an elegant old vase will always complement a spray of  seasonal flowers.

And much like people, some old things age gracefully with the help of a little extra care.

And other things grow more beautiful with little to assist them but age and patina.

I was a young woman when Viola gave me some exquisite old things.  They never required too much care and they are cherished now, almost thirty years later, along with some very sweet memories.

I keep reminding myself that finding the one-of-a-kind perfect gift for someone special may be as easy as a stop at the local antique store.


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27 Year Old Latch

There is a certain sweet familiarity

about rusty old friends

who wobble and groan

and creak and moan

like me.



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Scotty Plaque

There is a little framed plaque hanging in my kitchen just behind the new microwave and it fits right into a small space I gave it 25 years ago.  I have always loved the little lithograph but had become so accustomed to its presence I almost forgot it was there.

The image of a feisty Scottish Terrier proudly sitting on the master’s chair was a gift from my brother and sister-in-law to remind me of our dog’s funny antics and because Pepper used to sit bolt upright on our wing chair too.  It was her favorite place and she looked very much like in the picture.

The image is precious but I have always thought the rhyme beneath it completes the whole happy feeling it provokes.  I absolutely love the rhyme and once again I walk around quoting the words in my head, “Lots of things in life are junk, troubles never end, but there’s something never palls, a really truly friend.”

I also  just noticed  there is a reference on the back to the Buzza Company, makers of the plaque in Minneapolis, Minnesota.  And of course I looked it up.


George Buzza founded The Buzza Company in Minneapolis in 1907. 

Early products included college advertising posters, greeting cards, books and later framed mottos.  Buzza was considered a pioneer in his use of color and the variety of papers used in greeting cards.  The Buzza Company was one of the best known producers of framed lithographs or gift mottos.  Buzza knew that sentiment sold and no sentiments were spared with syrupy verses and pretty pictures for mothers and sweethearts. Other motifs included patriotic and religious writings and illustrations.  George Buzza retired in 1917.  The company’s stockholders liquidated the company in 1942.  

~ From about.com collectibles.  Sources: Terry Kovel, Minneapolis Public Library Online Archives

The Scotty plaque occupies such a tiny corner of my house, but it says, “Home.”  So, Thank you once again Steve and Viv all these years later.  If there is such a thing as the perfect gift, that was it.  Do you suppose I am soppy over sentimental syrupy verses and darling images?  I never thought so, but maybe so.  Maybe so.




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