Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Adventures in Tennessee~ Part 11

Hello there dear readers! Time again for another Adventures in TN post! The month of  September was an exciting and busy month! There were parties, farewells, and even a trip to Florida! The first farewell was to Mercy; she left at the beginning of the month. She went to Liberia{and was gone several months}to visit some family she still has there and help at an orphanage. It was much quieter in the house without Mercy, especially at the dinner table! I missed Mercy's loving smile and sarcastic attitude! ;) It was a lot of fun to “see her off” at the Nashville airport, but of course sad to say goodbye. Now on to a much happier things! ;) There were several fun events during September; one being when some friends of the Campbells and the Allison family came over for a movie night. We watched Despicable Me and Amazing Love, which is about the story of Hosea. After that I joined Mrs. Campbell, her grandson, Arden, her sister and niece, Kate and Promise, in a fun game of Knucklebones. It's a traditional New Zealand game similar to Jacks. Once played with real knucklebones from a sheep, now metal ones which resemble the shape of the knucklebone are used. In fact there seemed to many games of Knucklebones throughout the month. I really enjoyed playing it!{Not even sure what a knucklebone on a sheep could be, since they don't have knuckles!}
Another fun event was when Rashida, Meadow, Ashley and I went over to the Opryland Hotel to celebrate Ashley‘s 19th birthday. I've mentioned the hotel here and here. But it wasn't just any ordinary site-seeing trip. We dressed up, as if attending a wedding, just for the fun of it! Along the way we stopped to get a cold sweet treat. I’m sure it was a site when all four of us stepped into the old country store from which we bought our ice creams! There were a few elderly men in the back of the store playing checkers. They were probably curious to know why four young ladies were walking into the store{out in the country} all dressed up! =D Mr. Campbell dropped us off at the hotel and for two hours we walked, looked, laughed, and snapped photos! It was a such a wonderful time! To finish her birthday celebration off, we went back home and watched Fiddler on the Roof on the “big screen”. The younger granddaughters{and a few of the grandsons} joined in to watch the movie. Each time a song would play we would get up and dance/sing to the songs; it was hilarious! 
One night Ashley and I left the office early to watch some of the grandchildren at their Karate practice. Ashley and I sat on the sidelines mimicking the moves and laughing the whole time! We had a wonderful ride back with everyone singing hymns.  A few nights I attended a local church with the Johnson family and Mrs. Campbell. The church was having discussions about Israel and current events, how they pertain to us, as Christians.  Over one weekend the Allison children stayed with us since their parents were gone to a THM meeting in Chattanooga.  It was a fun weekend spending time with them, especially when Mr. Campbell took us all out to eat! There were eleven of us total! It was quite funny seeing our group walk into the restaurant since none of us seemed to be together. There was Mr. Campbell{with his noticeable New Zealand accent}, Ashley and I, and the Allison children{who look totally different form each other!} Some of the children have dark skin and dark hair, like Native Americans, some are adopted from Liberia, and one of the Allison boys has freckles and red hair! =D 
On Ashley’s actual birthday and the day before she left, we had a birthday/farewell party. We dressed up{again!} and had all kind of good for us, THM, sweet treats. We had Rocky Road ice cream{made with THM, Tummy Tucking Ice Cream}, Oopsie Éclairs{a THM recipe}, Cottage Berry Whip{THM recipe}, cinnamon muffins, Skinny Chocolate{THM recipe for chocolates}, a plain cheesecake and a raspberry cheesecake! After eating our delicious treats we headed outside for a few photos. That night we watched Annie Get Your Gun{1950}. The next day Ashley left which was so sad but thankfully two days before Mariah came to help in the office! So happy Ashley and I have kept in touch since she left; she has been such a good friend. She is always ready to pray for me any time I ask! What a blessing to have another Christ honoring friend! 
As I mentioned Mariah came to help in the office; I mentioned my dear friend Mariah here and here. She was coming to help because soon a new Ruby Girl, Jamie, would be coming and there would be no one to train her! Why, you might ask, would there be no one to help Jamie in the office? That’s because soon after she arrived, the entire Campbell family and I went to St. Andrews State Park, Florida! That’s right, with Mercy gone and everyone “on the land” going to Florida, Mariah and Jamie were the only ones left to make sure the important work of Above Rubies was to continue! Now you might be asking, “Why, Sarah, did you go with the family to Florida?” Well that’s a good question and I’m still trying to figure out exactly how that all worked! ;) The families had been planning this trip for awhile and had been talking about it months ahead. One day while talking to Rashida{Johnson} I said, “If I’m still here when y’all go{to Florida}; that would be great if I could go too!” As in, it would be nice but I know it will not happen! Well apparently that got Rashida to thinking and asking her parents if I could tag along with their family. Her parents loved the idea and soon it was brought before Mrs. Campbell, if I was able to leave the office for a week and join the whole family on their vacation. She wasn't sure at first but then decided that was fine since I was going as the Johnson’s guest and also going to help them with the children. Perhaps the fact I had been working in the office for almost a year and had become like part of the family helped to decide in my favor too! ;) However it happened, I praise the Lord I was able to go!
I had a fun drive down there with Meadow, Mr. and Mrs. Campbell. As it turned out I wasn't able to actually travel with the Johnsons because they didn't have enough room in their van! ;) Meadow rode with me so that I would have some company around my own age! Anyway when we arrived, the campsite we were staying at was partially flooded; that let me know this was definitely going to be adventure! I knew it would be when I heard the families would be camping and not taking the traditional route of staying in condos! =D We had to make a few arrangements for everyone’s tents to be on dry ground but thankfully it all worked out! Other then the Allisons, who stayed in a RV, the rest of the families stayed in tents. Rashida, Meadow, and I had our own tent. Later  the Gilmore family came to stay and their daughter, Joy, stayed with us girls! Most of our time was spent at the beach dodging enormous waves{some of the biggest I've ever seen!}, or eating and chatting around a camp fire. One night I got to go shark fishing off a giant pier. Well I{nor anyone else}caught a shark. But there were a few catches…not by me though! ;) Once I went fishing, during the day and night, off some rocks that jut out into the sea. Another no catch fishing trip for me, but I did however catch a fish from the shoreline! The first and only fish I have ever caught out of the ocean! =D 
That trip had one of many firsts! Another first for me was when Meadow and I had a photo-shoot on the beach. Rahsida was our fabulous photographer! It was a lot of fun, but a bit awkward to be having my pictures taken while people were walking by me! Yet another first was seeing dolphins, "in the wild", meaning not in an aquarium! One evening a huge torrential downpour came which flooded the entire camp site. :P For some reason Meadow and Rashida were already in the tent and I was still at the Johnson family’s campsite! I wound up “stranded” under a canopy standing on a picnic table with Vange Johnson{Rashida's mom} and a few of the grandsons! We were all standing on the table trying to avoid our feet being soak by the rising water! After the rain slowed down a bit, I made my way back to the girls tent. Rashida and Meadow wondered what happened to me! I gave them the news about the flooded tents, one of which collapsed! They were so shocked but for some reason the night ended in us laughing hysterically! It was indeed an adventure in Florida, one I will not soon forget! Hope you enjoyed this rather lengthy post about my time in Tennessee{and Florida} during the month of September! 
Have you heard of/played Knucklebones?
Do you know exactly what a sheep's knucklebone is?
Watched Fiddler on the Roof/Annie Get Your Gun?
Been “out of place” like we were in the country store?
Been to Florida?
Gone camping?
Have a memorable vacation like mine?
Gone fishing in the ocean?
Please leave your comments below!
Love in Christ,

Photo credits: Ashley, Meadow, and Rashida

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Crafting~ Card Making

Hello there, dearies! If you haven't figured out yet, from my posts, I love vintage things as well as traveling. One thing that doesn't get to much notice on my blog is my love for crafting! Especially my love of making cards. Now it's not like I've ever been some serious card maker, making lots of creative cards all the time. However I do enjoy making cards for the special people in my family and their special days; eg. birthdays, anniversary, etc. Since I've been traveling a lot lately I haven't been able to enjoy my love for handmade cards. Crafting supplies are not the easiest things to be toting around in one's suitcase! ;) Although a few days ago the Mutana children and I spent some time making cards. It was part of their school class! =D It was so much fun to see them take the instructions I gave them,  to draw a colorful flower, and see how they each added their own touch to it. I enjoyed helping them choose various papers to use, cut, use punches, and design their cards. I'm hoping to spend one of my days off making some cards. If I do, will be sure to share the pics!
All that being said, just thought I would share a few of the cards I've made throughout the years. I like to take pictures of the cards to reference for ideas on my new cards. And it's fun to see how my card making abilities have changed throughout the years! :) Here are some of the first cards I made; I think I was about 13 or 14. It's seems I was into making fashion/beauty themed cards! I still love the one with the glittery hairspray! Might just use that idea again! ;) Sorry for the blurry pics; they were taken with my very first digital camera. 
Usually I have an idea about how I want the card to look. I base it off the occasion(birthday, anniversary, bon voyage, etc.) or the person I'm giving it to(favorite color, hobbies they enjoy, style they like, etc). Sometimes if I'm having a creative "block", I flip through old card/scrapbook magazines. Recently, I have found so much inspiration from Pinterest! I'm amazed at the lovely ideas I find! =D
A lot of times my cards will have an old, slightly worn or vintage "feel" to them. Other times they will be fun and colorful! It all depends on the person I'm giving it to. Thankfully most in my family love vintage things too, so I get to "indulge" in my vintage tastes! ;) Some of my favorites things to do with cards is add interesting little touches like ribbon, bits of cloth, old buttons, or even vintage BINGO pieces. Sometimes I'll add thread or maybe even burn some of the paper's edges to get a more old "feel" to it. I also like re-purposing things, that could be thrown away. For instance, I like to use parts of other cards to make new cards. In my dad's Father's Day card I used some napkins; one for the background and one to cover up the to-go cup of coffee's original message saying, "Thank you!". The possibilities are limitless and I love thinking out of the box for a new idea! Hope you enjoyed this post about one of my favorites hobbies! I also hope this post has inspired you to make some cards for the special people in your life. Or at least do something creative! ;)

Do you enjoy making cards?
Are you a "crafter"?
If so what is your favorite crafty thing to do?
Where do you get inspiration for your cards/crafts?
Please leave your comments below!
Love in Christ,

All photos copyright by, All Things Vintage.

Monday, April 6, 2015

Through My Lens~ A "Spring" Walk

It's amazing how life changes! Why do I make such a statement? Well it's because I realize that if I was back home in Georgia this post would probably be titled, "A Snowy Walk" or "Look! We Got Snow!". ;) I would be happily showing you these photos after a rare snowfall had occurred during the winter season. In the South this would never be considered spring time with snow on the ground but up here, in Ontario, this is spring! While my family back home have already put on their sandals, t-shirts, and even shorts, I'm rejoicing over some warmer temps{very slight warmer temps}. The warmer temperature allowed me to go for a walk outside a few days ago. Although I still had to wear a warm, thick jacket and head-band; I didn't have to worry about my feet freezing in the snow! ;) Hurrah! My little walk allowed me to have some much needed exercise and fresh air too. I found a "creek"{actually I think it was some kind of water drainage system} but creek sounds nicer! ;) I also got to play around with my camera, hence the various picture's exposures. I love my camera; a Canon PowerShot SX170 IS, which I was able to get before leaving for my travels. It's a point and shoot but allows me to adjust certain things like aperture, shudder speed, and the exposure. I don't know much about cameras so it's a great introduction for me...that is until I learn more about photography and upgrade to my "dream camera"! ;) I love taking pictures of nature and finding the "creek" was a perfect opportunity for doing just that! One of my favorites is the close up of the moss and ice or maybe it's the one with the shopping cart; just because I wasn't expecting to find it there! Which one's yours?! Speaking of camera's I just won an amazing giveaway. What did I win? This cool ONA camera bag! So super excited to have such an awesome bag in my possession...well that is whenever I actually receive it in the mail! :) I'm trusting that one day I'll be able to put my dream camera inside it! =D Hope you enjoyed these photos!

What's the weather like where you live?
Enjoy taking walks?
Do you like taking photos?
What are your favorite things to photograph; people, nature, etc?
Ever won any cool giveaways?
Please leave your comments below!
Love in Christ,

All photos copyright by, All Things Vintage.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Adventures in Tennessee~Part 10

Hello there lovely readers! Here I am again, just going right along with my Adventure in Tennessee posts! In my last post, I wrote about fun celebrations and lazy weekends. The month of August was a relaxed time of a few get-togethers, walks in the woods, and playing outdoors with the grandchildren. There was an awesome bonfire at the Johnson family home. All the family, "on the land", joined together around the fire to eat popcorn, marshmallows, and tell stories. Anytime I was with the Campbell's large family it was always a joy; so many people who can get along with and enjoy each other's company is an awesome sight to see. Especially since most of the families see each other daily! If you didn't know the Campbell's three daughters and their families live very close by. I wrote about the family here.
There was a very fun game night that Ashley hosted. Most of the Campbell's grandchildren attended. It was great having the Campbell's big room downstairs packed with young people. We had snacks and then played fun games! A few of the games were; Psychiatrist(where one person is a "psychiatrist" and has to guess the "patients" illness), the Family Game(where each person is a different character, eg George Washington, the characters are read aloud and then everyone takes turns guessing who is which character; if they guess the person and which character they are, the person becomes part of their "family", the game ends when one person has everyone else in their "family"), Signs(each person has a different hand sign, then an invisible package is passed around and the only way to send/receive the package is by doing someone's hand sign to them; oh and there is also a person trying to guess who has the package, so everyone else has to do the hand signs very discreetly!) It was a lot of fun and there was so much laughter! We must have been too busy having fun, we forgot to take pictures! I have no pictures from that great evening! :( Oh well at least I have great memories! ;)
Another fun event was when Ashley and I went to a local farmer's market where Rashida's brother sells his organic produce. It was neat helping out at her brother's table, talking to costumers, looking at other vendor's tables, and exploring a near by art gallery/antique mall called the Factory. Once a stove factory originally build in 1929, it is now a very cool place that also houses restaurants and shops. It was great looking at cool art, overpriced clothes, trying on vintage hats, and seeing a set of French newspapers{from the 1950's} bound and filled with local news, old ads, and even an article about Gary Cooper going to see a ballet in Paris! It was very tempting to get, but the $140 price tag kept me away! ;) Other highlights from that fun trip were getting a bouquet of yellow sunflowers, eating a delicious, made from scratch strawberry doughnut dipped in chocolate, and eating some gourmet cheese and sourdough bread. By the way all of  that was free; there are perks of hanging out with one of the vendors! =D
The Allisons got a new horse; there's a neat story behind that. One day a women called the AR office. I answered the phone and her first question was, "Are there a lot of children around the Campbell's?" My answer, "Yes there are! They have several grandchildren who live close by!" Phone lady,"Do any of them have horses?" Me, "Yes, actually some of the families do have or have had horses!" She then proceeded to tell me about how she had a miniature horse which she loved dearly but could no longer take care of. She wanted to give the horse to a loving family with children and the Campbell's came to her mind! Needless to say the Allisons found themselves with a new horse a few week later! I funny side note; the horse's former name was Princess Portia Twinkling Star{that is some name!} but had an immediate name change to Gun-smoke! I laugh every time I think about that! =D
Left to right: Meadow's brother, Bowen, on crunches due to his dirt bike crash. My lovely pink box from my aunt. She covered the top of the box with cool ship themed postage stamps. Ashley and I with our "guns". Me with my "game face" on! ;) Opening my box. Mrs. Campbell with a basket full of her delicious produce from the garden. Naomi with a little puppy; she loves dogs!
Some other fun and random things: I learned how to throw a football, thanks to one of Meadow's brothers. Ashley and I enjoyed a few games of football with some of the grandsons. I'm not really a sports person but I did enjoy playing with them! I got a lovely package from my aunt filled with lots of goodies! Ashley and I did a funny "photo shoot" with some of the grandsons air-soft guns. Helped Mrs. Campbell harvest produce from her garden...meaning got to step away from the office early! ;) Made some cookies to deliver to one of Meadow's brother after he crashed on his dirt-bike. Wrote about one of his brother's crashes here. Watched old movies like Higher and Higher{1943}, Charade{1963}, That Funny Feeling{1965} and The Harvey Girls{1946}. Speaking of movies the night before Naomi left; we had a girl's night and watched The Young Victoria. {Absolutely love that movie!} It was Naomi and Ashley's first time to see it. It was a fun night but a sad one because yet another friend was leaving! :( I still keep in touch with Naomi and I've been blessed with yet another dear friend! Well hope you enjoyed the post and stay tuned for the month of September!

Do you enjoy bonfires?
Been to a farmer's market?
Had a game night with friends or family?
Have you planed any of the games I mentioned?
Seen any of these movies?
Know how to throw a football?
Enjoy playing sports?
Please leave your comments below!
Love in Christ,

Photo credits: Ashley