Back to the real world

I’m home from vacation.  Stress levels lowered, body full of vitamin D and mind full of vivid colors (which is a real reprieve from the endless vistas of white beige and grey we have here at home).

Here are some highlight photos:


We went to Jamaica and stayed in a very nice hotel.


We did a lot of snorkeling and shell hunting.  These are my favorite finds.


While snorkeling we saw many animals. Sea urchins…

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…lion fish (I think)…


…a sting ray…


… an eel (this guy scared the poo poo out of me! It is a water snake and I hate snakes!)


We fed some fish who were well used to this game!

Under water, we also saw a lobster, flounder, octopus, crab and barracuda but either failed to get a photo or the photo was crap.


On land we saw cats. Lots and lots of cats.


Here is a cute little hermit crab.


There were many birds, but this garling is the only one we successfully captured on film.


The flowers were every where and so vivid!

The shaving brush tree is something I’ve never seen before.  It dropped a flower so I added it to my hat.  It lasted for 3 days like that!


We did do a bit of shopping. Mostly I needed something to tame my wild hair (humidity).

We did two excursions.


Dunn’s river falls.

I climbed these falls in my 20’s.  I do not recall them being so hard or scary.  But these old knees and flabby body as well as a healthy dose of self preservation (which is often missing in your 20’s) and an acquired fear of heights made this grueling so I took one of the “off ramps” about 3/4’s of the way up.  Hubby was able to complete it.

The next outing was to the Blue Hole.


The Blue Hole was a two fold excursion.  A dip in the Blue Hole and some tubing on a river.  Hubby opted to leave his water camera behind so no photos of this.  So here is the story.

I failed to understand that before you can take your dip in the Blue Hole you have to climb some falls to get to it.  Note story above.  The night before had been significantly rainy so the falls were moving rather fast.  For that reason we were given the optional life jacket (I’ll take it!) We were crossing the falls from one side to the other right next to a precipice, one at a time, with the guide helping each person.  So obviously a tricky part.  I lost my balance and fell and the water started pushing me towards the edge.  In my mind I saw myself going over and at best breaking a leg or a worst cracking my head or neck and ending up permanently disabled or dead.  I was terrified and I believe I cried like a little girl.

Mercifully the sure footed guide Daniel (who’s name I will never forget and will always be in my prayers) was able to stop me from going over until the hubby and the other guide (Little T who was mercifully not little) were able to get to me and get me back on my feet.  I did get to the top of the falls this time (with guides being very attentive to my fears) and did enjoy the diving and swimming part.

The rafting was way more to my speed.  No need for me to rely on my knees and crappy sense of balance!

So except for the “little scare” I had a great time in Jamaica.  I feel rested and ready to face the rest of the winter!



And now for the couple.

Last time I gave you a closer look of the young lady in the left hand page from my album.


This time I’ll share the couple.


I love this guy’s pose!  It looks very natural for him!  I can see him standing like this with “the guys talking shop”.


I like the stripes on her skirt and her jacket is wonderful!


This is the same photographer as the young girl but the back looks different.

So I wonder if these photographs were taken at the same time with the photographer finishing one batch of cards before switching to the new ones.  If this is the case, is the young girl related to the old couple (parents/daughter).  Or were they (more likely) taken at different times and the people live in the same town and they may or may not be related.


Turn the page: Those are ’60’s skirts!

The next two carte de visits in the book look 60’s to me.


Today we will focus on the lady on the left.  This is her in the sleeve.


She looks young.  The skirt and bodice are of different material/color.  There is a belt, broach, necklace and earrings.


Do you see the stuffed/ceramic dog next to her?  It is a bit creepy!

The back of the carte.


I can’t find any info on the photographer.

Turn the page: Husband and wife

The next in line in the carte de visite book I found is a husband wife.


One look at her hair and we know this is 1870’s!


Here she is out of the sleeve.


Her dress appears to be made from velvet and she has very large earrings and broach.

The back of her card and the man’s card is the same (which is why I am assuming they were taken together and that they are married).

Blackpool was/is a resort town in England so these folks may have been living there or on a vacation.

Here is hubby, in and out of the sleeve. Quite the vest!



“New” old album Page 1


Use my hand as a reference for size!

Turn the page.


Mother and kids?  Looks like mom and girls have matching dresses.  Cute!


Out of the sleeve.


There is not much to go on for dating this card.  If I had to guess I’d say late 1870’s.  There is a lot detail on the skirts which was a popular thing to do in the 70’s.  The girls have the start of bangs but not the big frizzy ones that were popular in the 80’s   The card itself has rounded corners which started in the 70’s.  I’m puzzled by the yellow color of the card.  I’ve not seen or heard of that before.  Anyone else have any thoughts on that?


Flea Market’s best find!

I was walking along, picking this up, turning that around, when I spotted something that made me think “Dr. Who Tardis”.


I picked it up and turned it over and found a clasp.IMG_20180203_163034607

A lovely clasp!

When I opened that clasp I really noticed the embossed edge.


That embossing is on 3 sides.


I’m still pretty clueless about what it is other than some sort of book.  It wasn’t until I opened it up that I realized it was a photo album.


What threw me was its small size.  It is an album that displays one carte de visit per page.  And of course, I will share with you.


Finally started

Olive is officially on her way!  I bought the lining, closures and thread I needed to get started.


The bodice is well and truly started.  The original pattern has gathers at the waist but I did big pleats instead to try and match the inspiration.untitled

And I want to use the Dorset buttons I made ages ago!  (Alas, I will need to make more) but I think they will work out well.IMG_20180205_171155108

Its hard to get started but once I have, it is easier to keep going (unless I leave the country of course.)

Flea Market Gem

The hubby and I launched our vacation with a trip to a flea market.  I scored BIG!  My first purchase was a whopping $3 and worth that and more!

It is a little misers purse.  Obviously handmade (crocheted).IMG_20180203_162019574

I couldn’t tell you how old it is (they were around from late 1800’s to the 1920’s) but the closure strings remind me of one I saw at the Costume Museum of Canada and that one was dated 1870’s.  It was also crocheted.

It took awhile to figure out how to get into it but once I did I though “ingenious!”


There is a little tab on the front (look closely at the top photograph.  If you pull on it, it pulls the two sides apart and pulls the strings out.


To fish something out, you poke your fingers past the strings.


Then to close it, you pull on the ring.


I am getting a lot of bang for my buck with this item.  I can study it and figure out how it was made and make more.  And I can use it with my next costume because the color is a near perfect match!


Tomorrow I will share another treasure with you.