Monday, December 28, 2020

Driving in Gold, and My Childhood Decorations

Ah, what a lovely few days it's been - it feels like I haven't worked in months! And yet, the time has flown. Just time for a quick outfit review, then a few pictures from our drive, and the last of my Christmas decorations (only the village is left!).

Today, L and I got dressed in Real Clothes and went out for a drive to visit my mom and show her Vlad, the new car. 
Again, not really feeling like anything overly fancy, and no mental energy for digging up a Flashback. Just a few things that I like wearing. 

  • Sweater - Artisan de Luxe, consignment; last worn here in March on a planned sick day
  • Skirt - A New Day by Target, consignment; last seen here for my birthday in October
  • Boots - Matisse, consignment; last worn here earlier this month with McQ
  • Coat (below) - Donna Karan, consignment; last seen here in November

I love this patchwork sweater and its random tassels.
I paired it with this velour pleated skirt - the gold colour is so radiant. 
Uh-oh, I think it got stuck on the buckle of my boot there. 
It was good for clambering in and out of the car. 

Masked up - for Mom, and for brunch after at Floyd's Diner. 
Outerwear - another grey day. 
Welcome to winter in Victoria. 

  • Gloves - Parkhurst

The stuff: 
It felt weird to put jewelry on after a few days of not wearing any. 

  • Brass/copper cuff - Karen's
  • Brass/leather cuff - c. 1970s, Mom's
  • Earrings - thrifted
  • Spinner ring - Twang & Pearl
  • Amber ring - c. 1996
  • Bronze ring (not shown) - P. Sarpaneva, c. 1970, vintage expo

We traded a few more Christmas presents with Mom (thank you!) and she also gave me some of her unworn jewelry that I'd expressed an interest in. 
I remember Mom wearing this wonderful medallion necklace in the 70s. 

It's the zodiac signs, with a moon and star in the centre.
My dad bought this for her as a gift, from the Mexican Gift Shop (that was the actual name of it), which used to be where the Beehive Wool Shop is now (picture of it here). I remember going into that shop with Dad up to the late 70s - he bought me a plastic and silver ring there once, but I have no idea what happened to it. 

Anyway, this is indeed made in Mexico. Some digging around on the internet leads me to think this is a copy of the original sterling silver medallion by Alfredo Villasana, a Taxco piece produced in the 1920s or 30s. 
My/Mom's necklace is likely from the 60s. Cool! Thank you, Mom! 

She also passed along a couple of rings I'd remembered from when I was a kid.
The one on the left looks very much like that mid-century stuff by Robert Larin that I've been accumulating. 
It needs to be tightened up a bit for my skinny fingers. There are no marks on it anywhere. 

The blue stone ring has some nice stamped leaves on the band (also adjustable). 
It looks like some of the patina/black finish has rubbed off over time. I remember both of these from the mid-70s onward, so they are probably from the early 70s or slightly older. Again, thank you, Mom! You know I'll wear them. 

I walked up to Mom's house to check out her tree. 
Very nice! 

Mom's being "Vanna" and showing off the car. 
She wouldn't get in. "You'd both have to haul me out!" she exclaimed (yup, welcome to my world). 

She and L both had a chuckle over the lack of trunk space. 
Yeah, that will hold about three bags of groceries! 

We did a timer picture of the three of us. 
Good to see you, Mom! 

She also remembered that she had not one but TWO koala bear ornaments - I chose this one. 
It's from the last time she visited her brother in Melbourne. Now I have a koala for my animal collection! 

Speaking of ornaments...

My Childhood Ornaments

This is the last of my Christmas decorations, aside from the village, which I'm going to try to squish in and finish by New Year's Day, and these ones do not go on my tree. 

They live in a box in the closet - many years ago (maybe 30?), I spent a Christmas at Mom and Dad's going through their box of decorations and picking out all the ones that were "mine."
I made some of these, some were made for me, and some came taped to the top of my gifts from one of my two grandmothers. 

Vizzini helped me photograph these. 
"Quality control is important."

All of these are from between 1970 and the early 1980s, around when my grandmothers stopped putting ornaments on top of our gifts. My brother Dave (younger than me) got either a matching ornament or one slightly different. You know, treat the kids the same...
This plastic Santa came with sugar pellet candy inside him. That's quite a horrifying face - Santa, more sunblock! 
He was made in Hong Kong - he's one of the older ones here. Dave had one of these too. 

This is a velvet-flocked piece of styrofoam. 
Little glass mirrors and cording for decoration. Dave's ornament was a different shape. 

This dog is from a Ziggy collection. 
Dave had Ziggy, I got the dog.

I made this one myself! I remember a craft book full of stuff to cut out and make decorations. 
This - believe it or not! - is an angel. I decided she needed green hair. That's Phentex wool (about it here) which we always had around the house. 

This umbrella is made of some sort of wood fibre. 
I think Dave's was a fan? 

An early Disney ornament - this is either Chip or Dale, one of those mischievous chipmunks. 
He's plastic with flocking and faux fur. 

This is a very old angel. Mom has a collection of angels similar to this, which I loved. 
Her face is painted foam, and the rest of her is velvet-flocked cardboard. 
A bit of braid and some gold string for her hair. 

I think my grandmother (Mom's mother) made this one. 
I like the bit of foam forming the skate blade. It's all sewn by hand. 

This is a weird little skiing dog. 
He's felt and foam. 

This is a plastic snowman with flocking. 
Dave had the Santa. 

He had a red mouse version of my rabbit. 
He's foam-based, with a pipe-cleaner for wiring onto the tree. 

I think we made this Santa from printed fabric that also had other crafts you could make printed on it. 
We probably helped Mom cut this out, then sew some of this on her machine, then stuffed it ourselves (note the red Phentex wool hanger!). 

Vizzini break. 
"Are these ones for me to chew on?"

I know, I don't even have tissue around the decorations. Tsk. 

I don't remember where this little angel came from. 
But I've always liked it. 

This is my hair in the morning. 
I'm not sure where she came from - I don't have a lot of memories of her from my early childhood, so I think she was a later/early 80s one. 
She has a wooden spool inside her, so maybe Gram (Mom's mom) made her. 

I know Gram made this bell. 
She was really into this plastic canvas when it first came out. I remember place mats, all kinds of things made from it. 

I like this wooden soldier. 
"I concur. Please put it down for me to chew on."

Dave has a Santa or a snowman, can't remember. 
The parachute is cool. 

Gram made this bead and pipe-cleaner wreath. 
That brings back a lot of memories! 

I don't know where this tassel came from. 
It definitely feels very 80s. 

I'm sure Gram made this beaded bell too. 
There's even a beaded clapper. 
I remember she had these all over her own tree. 

If it's Phentex, then it likely came from Gram. 
She knitted a lot of slippers, and odds and ends of things for hospital auxiliaries. 
The blue jingle bell is the clapper. 

This felt horse head came with a candy cane. 
It looked like a hobby horse. 

This mouse is one I always remembered. 
The head and body are flocked foam with fabric and foiled paper decorations.  

These little elves totally take me back. 
He has a pipe-cleaner on the back to wire him to the tree. 
Dave has an orange one, I think. 

This is a really early one, from Grandma J (Dad's mom).
Dave has an iridescent blue bird like this. 
I remember being very taken with the whole iridescent thing when I was a kid. 

I have a few of these creepy-ass elves. 
They are classic 1960s. 
The pink, yellow, blue and green mix here is so NOT Christmassy! 

This one's an angry elf. 
Look at that furious face! 
Maybe he's mad at being in a box for 30 years?

Look what was in the bottom of the box! 
Red and blue tinsel! We reused our tinsel every year that I can remember, and there were only a few threads of the non-silver-coloured tinsel in the big bag of it. We were always told they were the oldest.

I've saved the best two for last, as I made these when I was very young. 
Glitter, felt, wool and some googly eyes. 
Yup, that's my writing. I learned to write when I was about 7 years old.
It's likely that I was 6 or 7 when I made these. 

Vizzini, how has all this Christmas stuff been for you? 

Only a few more days and I'll take it all down, bud. 

How's your week been? Any adventures, or are you just chilling at home? 


  1. I love that jumper and the skirt together, such a nice combination! And it's great you were able to visit your mum with the car - that will make it so much easier for you to see each other more frequently! :)

    made me smile seeing all the decorations you made - once again this year we made more decorations for the tree on Christmas eve - mum had a quiet word to me that her tree was overflowing with ornaments so we took most of them home, haha!

    1. Thanks, Mica! It was comfy and that's what I needed. I know, it was perfect, being able to drive out there to see her, instead of busing or cabbing.

      Oh, nice! It will be fun for your boys seeing those as they grow up.

  2. I love the zodiac medallion! Lise

  3. Fabulous clothes as usual, Sheila! I love the extra touches with the pendant and earrings. I have a couple childhood decorations, and DH has more. I have so many of my kids so when and if they want, they can have them.

    1. Thanks so much, Sam! I find that accessories always make an outfit look finished. That's so cool that you still have a lot of your ornaments. :)

  4. All three of you look fantastic (and Vlad, too!) You and your lovely Mum have the same smile.
    We used to have a Triumph Herald and I'd get out of it in such a ungainly manner. I think they used to each posh girls how to climb out of a sports car elegantly at finishing school, we all need lessons!
    Love your Mum's Mexican pendant.
    There's so many of your childhood decorations I recognise from my childhood, too. I had to giggle at Vizzini peeping through the Santa in a balloon bauble, priceless! xxx

    1. Thanks so much, Vix! Mom says to tell you we also used to have a Triumph Herald (until I was 4 years old). This car hasn't been too bad so far - just wait till I have a mini on, though!

      I love the pendant - it's so cool.

      That's so funny - we all had similar decorations. Vizzini was all over them while I was taking pictures! What a little scamp.

  5. What a joyful outfit! And your decorations make a box of delights. Like you, our decorations go back for years, they have been treasured from when our children were small. A bit bedraggled, yes, but much loved!

    1. Thank you so much! I loved seeing my old ornaments - it really took me back to my childhood.

  6. I had to go into the office very briefly today, which felt really odd, as indeed it felt as if I hadn't worked in a long time, while it's actually less than a week. I'm definitely hearing you on not having much mental energy.
    I'm still loving your outfit though, even if it was an effortless one. That jumper is just perfect for lazy days, and the skirt's giving it quite a lot of oomph.
    I'm loving your Mum's zodiac medallion necklace and the rings, how lovely that your Mum passed them on to you. I bet your Mum was well impressed with Vlad! Love that picture of the three of you.
    Your childhood ornaments are delightful, and I see that a certain someone loves them too ...
    Enjoy your time off, Sheila. We have been mostly chilling at home, but managed a couple of walks as well. xxx

    1. Oh, gosh, I bet that felt weird, Ann! My energy is so low right now - it will be good to get back to a routine, for sure...but not just yet!

      Thank you! I love a fun jumper - it does all the work.

      I love the necklace and the rings - she's been asking me about some of the things that I've always wanted. She was very taken with the car, and tempted to go for a quick spin.

      Thanks, Ann! Hugs.

  7. I worked out today and I always go on my bicycle, it's just a few minutes, and both times it rained and it was very very cold. I cleaned the house and am totally ready for the new year to come. I really want to see more of the Jag!!

    1. Good for you, Nancy! I did a walk today and yesterday, and I'm starting to think about taking all the decorations down. Soon.

      I know, there will be lots of pictures, no worries, no rush! ;-P

  8. Love the photos of the car and three of you. Happy New Year!

  9. Good afteroon Sheila, sitting here catching up with this last weeks glorious posts. I kept thinking I must comment on that or that but I will sum up by saying so many fab outfits(you looked great for your Christmas day) and so many fab ornaments. I have been eating far too much! I dressed for dinner even though it was just us Christmas day and yeah that dress I am going to wear NYE well that will be er anyway happy New Year to you and congrats on the car!! Shazxx

    1. Hi, Shaz! I hope you had a great Christmas, my dear! Thank you so much, and I'm thrilled you had fun reading through. I have now finished my chocolate and feel I can get back to normal eating. I'm happy to hear you dressed up! Well done! And I hope you'll get that mojo going for New Year's Eve too!

      Thank you - a very Happy 2021 to you!

  10. Lovely that you went for a drive in your new car! (woww, so luxurious!) and lovely to see your mom!. These are some funny photos of you!
    And so fab outfit, the patchwork pullover and pleated skirt are a stunning ensemble and your brass accessories and cute burgundy coat go so well!. Love the matchy mask and gloves!.
    Those ornaments have put a smile on my face and made me feel a little bit nostalgic!, I think there are still some of the ornaments I made at school in my parent's house.

    1. It felt very luxurious - it's a luxury car! I loved seeing Mom, though - that was the best part.

      Thank you - it was just simple stuff, not a lot of effort, but I guess it all matters.

      I'm glad! That's very cool. Hugs to you, my dear.

  11. What a beautiful gold pleated skirt! I love how you styled it too. Such a rich shade of gold, makes for a eye-catching look for sure. Did you mother like Vlad?
    Wonderful ornaments, it was great seeing those made by your granny. We plan to chill at home. I wish you all the best in 2021.

    1. Thanks so much, Ivana! It is a glorious shade of yellow/gold. Yes, Mom loved Vlad! She liked to zoom around in her day. :)

      Thanks again - I loved looking at these decorations. Happy New Year to you!

  12. This is unlikely to come as a shocking surprise by any means, but I absolutely ADORE that fantastic 1970s astrological symbol necklace. Swoon!

    Congratulations on your new ride. It's absolutely breathtaking!

    Autumn Zenith 🧡 Witchcrafted Life

    1. Isn't it amazing?? I am so happy that Mom has gifted it to me!

      Thanks, Autumn! It's a fun ride!

  13. What fun that your grandmother put these ornaments things on your parcels. So sweet. And you did very well in creating your ornaments at 7 years old. Very creative.
    Is Vlad really your car?? If so... How fancy. How luxurious.

    1. It was a tradition for years - it reminds me of her. I've always been crafy!

      Yes, he really is - L saved for 8 years to buy it (we don't like carrying debt). He deserves it after all that time!

  14. Lovely plush skirt and the patchwork sweater is cute!

    So, what about that sexy new car...! How cool is that? Yeehaaa x

  15. How nice that you got to see your mom.
    Here we spent Christmas and NY in total quarantine.
    I enjoyed seeing your ornaments and my fave were the elves !

    1. We have been really lucky here on the Island, to have very few daily cases of COVID - quarantine over the holidays sounds awful. I'm glad you enjoyed my decorations, Lorena. :)


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