Tag Archives: Treasures

Shipshewana Silliness

My July 4th began in the car, listening to a half of a very good book while I drove to Shipshewana, Indiana for our annual ladies retreat with some family and friends.

I thought it was crazy that I bought cinnamon bread in Indiana and when I sliced it, it was shaped like Michigan.Lotta love in that loaf.


The flea market celebrated the holiday opening on Monday, along with their usual Tuesday and Wednesday. Who doesn’t love an extra day to shop?

Besides the famous flea market with bargains beyond ones imagination, there are many store-front shops that line the main street and side streets.

We stayed at the Farmstead Inn, ate fresh locally farmed Amish food, found wonderful bargains every day, had our very own auction one night, (everyone contributes a donation or more) and played card B I N G O the next. The auction purchases and bingo prizes were fun, some practical, others, well, maybe not so much.



The musical, The Home Game, playing at the Blue Gate Theater and Restaurant,  was raved about by those who attended.

But as always – –  the very best part for me was all the laughter, and just being together with family and friends and I can’t forget my mother’s wonderful silly sisters.



At one point I truly thought someone in the hotel may complain. We all laughed so loud and hard, it hurt. Truly the best kind of pain! That’s me below with the happy tears at the bottom right.

Jersey Cookie Girl

Our Shipshee Faces! Photo- Jersey Cookie Girl

Here are some of our best finds this trip!

If you love – better than Grandma’s comfort food, shopping, and great flea market bargains, you will adore Shipshewana. I highly recommend a visit.

Until next time, wishing everyone a wonderful weekend!

Love Mel


Filed under Shipshewana, Uncategorized

The Stocking

The Stocking.

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More Than A Tidbit, From One of the Greats!


There isn’t much else on my mind these days besides research, morning, noon, and night. I’m either reading or writing or running scenes through my mind.

My past weeks work included reading several books on writing essays and reading memoirs by and about a diverse group of people.

Some, well most of these books were dry and unmemorable, except one. I read them with the expectation of how I used to read parenting books. I was always thrilled to take away even one tidbit of an idea to help me somehow in someway through a present struggle. It’s the same with writing books. Since every person is different and every story personal, there can’t be just one book that suits all authors and their individual questions. That must be why I have at least fifty writing books above my desk. You’d think I would be a better writer, but as I say, “I’m an infinite work in progress.”


The book I finished last night shocked me, inspired me, made me cry, and to my utter surprise made me laugh out loud more than once. And the best part was it made sense to me. Click, the light bulb went on! “YAY!” I love when that happens.

And to think this was the dreaded book I had saved until last, because the author and his gazillion novels scare the bejeebers out of me.


The book is titled, “Stephen King (a memoir of the craft)On Writing,” Published in the year 2000,

It’s the combination of his personal memoir along with the added bonus of not just one, but a treasure-trove of ideas for the serious writer to try. He says, “Most books about writing are filled with bullshit . .  . I figured the shorter the book, the less bullshit.”  He was point-on and managed to make it a quick read with logical usable information.

I agreed with  many of Stephen King’s writing opinions on the assorted topics and found this book to be an awesome read, (even if you are not a writer). I was only scared a tiny bit.

MY TAKE AWAY-suggestions by Stephen King

“If you don’t have the time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write.”  I agree with him.

Own “Strunk And White, The Elements of Style,” and use it! (I do)

Set a daily writing goal of at least 1000 words, working your way up.(S.K.’s is 5000)

Write at least six days a week

First draft with the door closed, no phone, no interruptions

Keep an Ideal Reader in mind (I.R.)(S.K.’s is his wife)

Focus on the importance of language

***This book will be returned to the library as soon as my copy of “On Writing,” arrives. The great examples of differences in the first draft and second draft with its edits are something I would like to have on my desk for future reference.


Any writers out there want to share their favorite writing books and why? Please email me.











Filed under book review, writing

Our Annual Garage Sale Gala

Our Annual Garage Sale Gala.

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Filed under Garage Sale, Spring

Our Annual Garage Sale Gala


May 16, 17, 18

May 16, 17, 18









Save the Date…Mark your Calendars... It’s that time of year again and I believe this will be the best sale to date.

This year it will be held three days, starting on Friday, May 16th beginning a day earlier than the annual Wyandotte City Wide.

Every Spring (and sometimes Fall) my two dear friends and neighbor ladies, Eva and Carol throw the best Garage Sale Gala ever! It is truly a wonderful gourmet collection of treasures coming from many different family members and friends. I’m not sure why, but it seems I end up purchasing more items than I take over to sell. Who can resist great bargains? Obviously not me!

I’ve been invited to join in their fun festivities for the past several years. We’ve always enjoyed catching up on a sunny weekend after what seems to be a never-ending winter, especially this year.  I have also had the privilege of sharing their awesome homemade lunches including Carol’s yummy ambrosia salad, Eva’s strawberry pretzel salad along with sloppy joes and a relish dish. Oh almost forgot the deserts of cookies, cakes, breads and the famous peanut butter balls. Too bad we can’t sell those Eva, you’d be a rich lady. (Sorry folks, the food isn’t for sale.) I only mentioned it  because it’s part of this annual experience.

What makes this sale so spectacular is . . . They only accept extra clean items, they are particular about what they accept, and are extremely organized. Everything is tested to see if it works and priced to sell at almost give-away prices.  People come back every year and comment on these things. If you have previous experience searching for treasures at these sorts of events, you probably know how fabulous and fun it is to hit a “clean sale“.

These two ladies begin preparing weeks in advance. They collect items, measure, mark and fold, they categorize. The garage is cleaned, the tables washed down, tents, umbrellas, racks, and benches set up. The boxes are unloaded and the items are placed with other like merchandise. It’s a ton of work, a ton of fun, and they have always had some unexpected surprises and pleasures that arise in these crazy days together.

Available at this years sale (so far)… Assorted knickknacks, towels/bedding, new toiletries, afghans, dishes, glasses, vases, silverware/utensils, toys, books, small appliances, exercise equipment, zen fountains, tools, outdoor decorations, ceiling fans, pictures, wall hangings, frames, purses, shoes, jewelry,  and so much more. Too much to list here.

To keep in mind for maybe an upcoming shower or gift . . . Carol creates exclusive exquisite hand-crafted baby bibs, quilts, baby blankets, hot pads, aprons and placements all at amazing prices. These items will be available on a special table while supplies last. (Carol, you can update this list in the comment section.)

Can’t wait to see everyone Garage Sale Galloping May 16, 17, 18th.

Okay, back to cleaning out closets, drawers, shelves, and jewelry boxes, asking myself, do I love it or is it taking up space, can I part with it? Hopefully the items I let go will find a new home and a new person to love them.

I will be posting again with the address and times in the near future.

If you are looking for something special, let me know. I can tell you if we have one or not.

May 16

May 16,17,18


Filed under Garage Sale, Spring