Sunday, October 31, 2010


I'm still painting and working on getting ready for my booth but taking a quick break to say:
hope everyone had a
XOXO - Cindi

Wednesday, October 27, 2010


He's dressed in a Woolrich shirt and Gap pants purchased from Goodwill for a grand total of $3.38 plus tax! He's stuffed with straw, my dying tomato plants, trimmings from my apple tree and sticks that were from the neighbors hedge that I trimmed a few months ago but left the branches in his yard for him...and they were still there, so....I used them.
I put him up on the border of my yard. There's a fence post running up his pant leg and up the back of his shirt. I started putting up the fence and then pulled out all the posts except this one. I just couldn't make up my mind about the I made small flowerbeds surrounded by rocks along the drive and then sprayed my neighbors weeds that hung over them with weed killer. I also planted 3 Lilac bushes along the border and a Peach tree. I'm thinking of adding one more small flowering or fruit tree. Eventually I'll just "block" the neighbors (weeds) yard from my sight.

That's my neighbors house and HIS weeds.(it's NOT my yard)...he only cut his lawn ONCE this summer that I know of!!! But HEY! At least he's not parking all his cars on the front lawn any more.

The scarecrow, my Halloween house flag, mums in the yard and on the steps with a little pumpkin plus some small ghosts flying in the trees...that's my decorating for Halloween this year.

UPDATE: The scarecrow might not have been my best idea! It's been up for a couple of days now and my little dog "Louie" looks out the living room window and trembles in fear and barks furiously!  At first I couldn't figure it out. What in the H was he barking at!? But it's the scarecrow. Then at night, when he and Ruby are upstairs with me in bed, they peer out the window and see him standing down there in the darkness and they start a chorus of howling. I gotta say...he kinda of scares me too, when I look down and see him there in the night.................anyway! Another

UPDATE: I'm now on the laptop and totally wireless and now I have to figure out how to load pictures on this shiny new fangled thing. That fact and my latest

UPDATE: I finally got the call for a booth space at the Antique/Junk Mall! I've been on the waiting list FOREVER. They get A LOT of traffic. They have a large building with over 170 booths and a smaller (and I think nicer) building with 80 booths. I got a nice CORNER one in the small building! I'm SO thrilled! I had actually called a storage unit rental place earlier that morning because I have SO many projects that I want to work on and NO space to do it.
And being the procrastinator that I am well....
So, the cosmic forces had my name pop up and I have a booth! I can't get it until next week but that will give me some time to get working on the items I want to create for it. I'm much better under pressure about creating. I remember once in school I had an assignment to create a calligraphy book. I had 3 weeks to work on it. So, the night before my Dad is yelling at me because I just started working on it. I stayed up until 4 o'clock. I created a pop-up book and got an A+.  (but of course Dad wasn't impressed).
So now that I'm so much older and wiser....I won't wait until the last moment (Or have I?)
So, I might not be posting very often, or at least until after Sunday Nov 7th.....
(but I'll be reading your blogs while on BREAK at my day job!)
Take care! XOXO - Cindi

Sunday, October 24, 2010

I LIVED IN THIS HOUSE (and a Halloween Story)

for about 6 months or so. This is the side view and here's the front of the house -
That was 30 years ago (?)
WOW! that just flew by, I mean it doesn't feel like yesterday but THIRTY years...
I digress.
It's the Looney Mansion as in John Looney, the gangster.
It had changed hands a few times and then was divided up into little "apartments".
My apartment was actually more of a "room". I had a teeny tiny oven with a flickering pilot light that I watched constantly and 2 little burners on top. My refrigerator was a little compact one and my bed was a Murphy bed. If you are not familiar with Murphy beds, those are the ones were you open up a closet and pull the bed down and out.
30 years ago... I thought it was SO COOL!!!
I remember my Dad and step-Mom stopping by to see it when I first moved in and later I would hear that my father was just MORTIFIED. Back then I was so young and NAIVE. I swear, I believed absolutely EVERYTHING anyone told me. I believed all people were honest and trustworthy and meant me no harm. So that was why I wasn't alarmed that a fire escape came directly up to my window and the window wouldn't lock.
This photo shows a close-up view. My window is the one on the second floor on the left next to the balcony. The fire-escape has been removed but it used to come up the side of the house with a landing in front of my window.  There was also a small iron ladder hanging from the side of the balcony, so that a person could escape down to the landing.
Usually I had to park on the side street so I would enter in the far back door at the side of the house and walk down a hallway into the huge foyer and go up the ornate carved curved stairway to the second floor and down the hall to my room. The landlady lived in the room opposite the foyer and she told me the reason that she had her door standing open most of the time, was because that way she could sit on her sofa and watch her "stories" and also watch whoever came in the front door by looking above the TV set into the huge mirror above it.
She also had said that all the rooms were rented....but I never saw a single person, other than her, the entire time I lived there. Oh sure, sometimes I would see a door crack open for a moment and then close but I was too busy sprinting down the halls and running up the stairs to stop and see a face.

I also had to share a bathroom and only ONCE did I have to wait for someone to get out of there. I waited inside my room next to my door until I heard the bathroom door open and close and another door close down the hallway. Then I grabbed my bucket and ran. I had a bucket full of cleaning supplies and I would scour out the clawfoot tub that looked clean already before using it. Thankfully, I wasn't home much in those days. I worked a full time job at a bank and most evenings worked at a popular bar & grill. Off hours were spent out with friends or at Diamond Gym's (yes! I actually worked out!)
or at the Family Y swimming. I remember swimming laps with the senior citizens before going to work at the bank in the mornings and I liked the Y because I could take showers there!
I recently watched the HBO series True Blood (just the first season so far) and I found myself thinking back to those days and my life back then, The character of Sookie Stackhouse reminded me of myself so much.
She's young, naive, fit and blond. She is so trusting of everyone and everyone is in love with her. When I was her age, I also had boys and men proclaiming their love and I would just giggle. I was so critical of myself that I always thought they had to be kidding. How could they possible ADORE me? Inside I felt like the chubby outcast grade schooler that I had been. Just like the HBO show, my manager at the bar was always telling me how much he loved me and one of the elder lawyers at the bank would always hold the elevator for me and tell me he liked my dress or offer to help me with my parking tickets or whatever and I would just blush and giggle.

And now, well...I recently ran across a photo of the author of the True Blood books. Charlaine Harris.
I think I look more like her NOW than I do Sookie! sigh.....
(Hmmmm, not to be mean, but Charlaine really needs a better bra!)
So now you have a background story on me and here's a bit more of the background on the house.
10 to 15 years ago, the house was purchased by new owners who started working on returning it back to a home. Here is part of the newspaper article about the sale of the home:
"Visitors to the Looney House found no bullet holes in the walls, no skeletons in the basement, and although there have been rumors of tunnels that lead out of the house to nearby homes, none has ever been found.
What they did see was a 5,000-square-foot mash-up of antique charm and modern conveniences in the form of the home built in 1897 in Rock Island’s Highland Park Historic District for the city’s most notorious gangland figure, John Looney.
The home, at 1635 20th St., is being sold by its owners, Ray and Vonnie Berger. Tours were offered to those interested in buying or just curious about the home and its history. The price is set at $349,000.
Although the purpose of the tours was to find a buyer for the home, many of those taking the tours are curious about the house and its original owner.
Looney was Rock Island’s most prominent crime figure in the early 1900s, building his fortune through pimping, racketeering, extortion, illegal liquor and gambling and running a scandalous newspaper.
He was convicted of murdering a saloonkeeper who wouldn’t pay him protection money and was sent to prison. After his release, he moved to Texas, where he died in 1942. His life was the basis of the graphic novel “Road to Perdition” written by Muscatine’s Max Allan Collins, which was adapted into a 2002 movie starring Tom Hanks and Paul Newman.

So now for the Halloween story.
That Halloween I had to work that evening at the Bar & Grill. At the time it was the popular Hot Spot in town and the place was packed with people in costumes. I dressed as a vampire. (Obviously I was WAY ahead of my time! LOL!) I had sprayed my hair BLACK with some Halloween stuff.

(I later had to wash it with PRELL to get it out!) I had the fangs and cape and the whole get-up. All my friends were either working with me or at the bar. EVERYONE was in costume. It was such fun! My sister was dressed as a HUGE stuffed M&M.
She looked so cute but had a hard time walking around or sitting in the booths. I remember one of my friends was wrapped in gauze as a mummy and was dodging cigarettes and dreading bathroom runs all night. Everyone had a great time.
Later, after we closed and cleaned up the bar, I went outside to my car and drove home in drizzling rain.
It was a perfect Halloween night. Dark and rainy and scary. I parked my car at the side of the house and RAN.
Ran across the yard with my cape flying behind me. I pulled open the door and ran down the hall, across the foyer and up the stairs and down that hall to my door. I fumbled with key. I felt like someone was chasing me. I think the Halloween NIGHT was getting to me.
I got into my room and locked the door. I collapsed onto the bed. I was SAFE.
I laid there for a few moments, catching my breath. Then I heard something.
It was footsteps. Slow footsteps coming down my hall. I had never heard anyone walk down my hall before. My door was the last one, except for the door at the very end that just lead out to the balcony.
I laid there frozen. Had I imagined it?
Then I slowly sat up, my ears straining for a sound..........
There was a very soft knocking on my door! I didn't move. I was wishing I hadn't left the light on.
Could whatever was out there see the light below the door? I waited, not wanting to make a sound.
The door knob slowly turned. But thankfully it was locked. I thought that I could hear my heart pounding in my ears!
Then I heard footsteps again but not walking away. They were headed towards the balcony door.
I sprang up! If it got out onto the balcony, it could climb down the little ladder onto the fire escape landing that was in front of my broken lock window!  I pulled the window up and stuck my head out to get a look.
There on the balcony I could see a HUGE figure leaning over the side towards my window! I couldn't really make out what is was but  I SCREAMED!!!!
Quickly it turned and ran back into the hallway and was knocking hard on my door!
The voice was yelling  "It's ME! It's ME!"
I recognized the voice and pulled the door open. There was my sister, the big M&M.
and the scariest part of the story is that no one came out of any of the doors to investigate what all the knocking and screaming was about!?

Here's a blue print sketch of the renovated house. On the second floor, my room is now the office/library with a closet that used to hold the Murphy bed. It looks to me, like they took down a lot of walls on the 1st and 2nd floors and made them into larger rooms.


Sunday, October 17, 2010

I CAN'T COMMENT ! ! ! ! ! !

I am going crazy here!
I've tried to comment on my favorite blogs and I keep getting an ERROR from Blogger!!!
I'm ripping my hair out!
 Nita: Congrats! on being featured by Pumpkinrot ! You are both FABULOUS!
Christer : I'm still laughing thinking about you giving BOTH of your BIG dogs a shower after rolling in wild hog poo! (and your photos are amazing as always!)
Denise : I hope your thrifting helped! I have a cabinet from the same "family"! Mine was a record cabinet and is now a kitchen cabinet and I put my cookie sheets etc. in where the "albums" used to go.
Georgina : Good Luck and Prayers for your daughter and I'm loving those dancing skellies!
I'm hoping Blogger gets this fixed soon!
Good News!!! - I now have a new computer! It's a Toshiba laptop and I busy learning how to use it! It's SO different from this old thing! (Yes, I'm using the old computer right now and hopefully this will be my last post from it. The new old is uploading some stuff right now. Last night I spent FOREVER trying to upload my saved photos onto a USB stick. I don't know if I'm doing it right or if I just have a zillion photos saved but I finally stopped halfway through and after 3 hours!) The photo above I had saved on my computer because it's so strange and scary! But it's also just the kind of "baby" that I would love! I never had a post where I needed it before. So, since I'm moving off of this, I thought it would be a good time to use it and actually, if I continue with these ERROR problems, my head might end up looking like that!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Friday, October 15, 2010


I stumbled upon it by accident and it scared me silly!
I am NOT kidding!
So DON'T get mad at me if you watch it and you have nightmares!
It is definitely something for the Halloween Season but....
Watch at your on risk.
Make sure small children are out of the room!


Wednesday, October 13, 2010


OK, If yesterdays post didn't change your mind about carving up a pumpkin....Then go to this Better Homes and Garden link for some FREE stencils for your Halloween Pumpkin! There's one for everyone!
There's one for Pam -

One for Jennifer and Georgina -

One for Nita -

One For Denise -

One for Magaly -

One for Amber -

And a whole bunch more for both me and Abi -

I think there was a total of 27 different breeds! Just a dog gone good idea LOL!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Monday, October 11, 2010

The Sketchbook Project

"It's like a concert tour but with sketchbooks.Thousands of sketchbooks will be exhibited at galleries and museums as they make their way on tour across the country.
After the tour, all sketchbooks will enter into the permanent collection of The Brooklyn Art Library, where they will be barcoded and available for the public to view." -

If you want to be part of this just got to this link and sign up. You have to do it by Oct. 31st.
It costs $25.00 but your sketchbook will be part of the permanent collection.
I had seen this on several blogs sites but it was my niece Grace that called me all excited about it.
She said we HAD to do it! So even though I've been watching my pennies, I signed up.
They list themes for you to choose from and I picked "It's raining Cats and Dogs".
Funny but everyone knew which one I had picked without me even telling them! Hmmmm
So I received my sketchbook in the mail last week and I'm going to start working on it.
I plan to post some photos of it along the way. So check it out! It is kinda cool to think about it touring around the country for everyone to see! I have SO many ideas. It should be fun! Let me know if you sign up!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

My Birthday Gifts!

OK! Yes, my birthday was in July. But I thought I'd show you what I got from one of my best friends because it's so fitting for the Halloween season.
Isn't she GREAT! (both the witch and my friend! LOL!)
She got her for my kitchen. My kitchen is done mainly in White and Black with touches of gold and silver.
It's very eclectic with skellys, voodoo dolls, cats, mirrors and old photos. Lots of strange things and I love it!
My friend figured a WITCH would fit right in!
So I was tidying up today and as I was looking at my witch, I realized that I had never posted her photo!
She just makes me smile whenever I look at her! When I first got her and hung her up, Ralphie walked into the room and just sat and stared at her. I tapped him with my foot and he JUMPED! It was so funny! My brave little "terror", scared of the witch.
MY other best friend gave me a card and she had written inside of it as a coupon for "one girl's day road trip" to wherever I wanted to go. The end of this month I'm taking some vacation days and we are driving up to Galena. (Illinois)
 I'm really excited about it because it's been a zillion years since I've been there and the little town is just packed full of great shops! I will make sure to take a bunch of photos so that I can post and write all about it. I am trying to curtail my thrift store and estate sale visits so that I will have some spending money for all the great things I'm sure I will find.
I hope everyone had a great weekend! Take care, XOXO - Cindi

Saturday, October 9, 2010

John Lennon

(Well, cross your fingers that I get this posted! I deleted A TON of stuff in hopes of gaining some memory)

There's a lot of my childhood that I don't remember. If I really try to focus on something sometimes, suddenly it will come back. I suppose I just don't want to remember but I do remember Ed Sullivan. (Yeah, I'm THAT old.) Just very faintly, I can remember sitting downstairs in the rec room with my parents and little sister eating ice cream with chocolate powder "PDQ" on top of it for our evening treat (Hmmm...strange I remember the ice cream!?) Anyway I remember the night 4 boys came out with long hair and sang. My parents grumbled about that long hippie hair and I, the dutiful child, shook my head along with them. It was just awful, outrageous! Those darn hippies! What was the world coming to?!

After that, I remember being over at a neighbor girls house. I was so excited because she was a teenager and she never spoke to us younger girls but one day we were allowed into her MOD bedroom. And there was the album.

The other girls were giggling over Paul, but I was secretly in love with John. He was so handsome and witty. I had decided then and there that I wanted to marry him!

or Bobby Sherman.
When I became a teenager, I was still in love with John. I listened to the Beatles over and over again. Of course I was also lusting after Mick Jagger at this point,

 but John was still number one.
Still later, in my early twenties, driving to work on a snowy morning I heard the news. John was dead. I felt such shock. How could this be? I was so depressed and when I got to work no one understood. I remember feeling so alone and sad. No one understood and to try to talk about it would just make me more of an my small mid-western middle class suburban world no one else seemed to get it.
I can't believe that time has flown by like it has. That John Lennon would be 70 today.
I don't think that a lot of people realize that he studied Art before he studied the guitar.

I love his perspective on life. So many of his quotes are among my favorites. Here are a few:
The more I see the less I know for sure. - John Lennon

Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans.-John Lennon

I believe in everything until it's disproved. So I believe in fairies, the myths, dragons. It all exists, even if it's in your mind. Who's to say that dreams and nightmares aren't as real as the here and now? -John Lennon

My role in society, or any artist's or poet's role, is to try and express what we all feel. Not to tell people how to feel. Not as a preacher, not as a leader, but as a reflection of us all.
John Lennon

As usual, there is a great woman behind every idiot. -John Lennon

Time you enjoy wasting, was not wasted. -John Lennon

I still miss you John.