Thursday, June 25, 2009

Snails... The Clean Up Crew

The Clean Up Crew
It's summertime ~ hot lazy days in the southern humidity with
much to blog about but in somewhat of a blogging rut.
Awaiting pictures from the fun filled bachelorette weekend.
Solving last minute wedding ordeals (truly, ordeals...).
Working at the village ~ with all that cool old stuff & all the talented gals.
Hosting Pampered Chef Events & Bash for Cash Days.
Growing Vegetables in the Village Shack Garden Pit.
Getting ready for a Parking Lot Sale on Saturday...
All that & I chose to introduce you to our
Clean Up Crew...
Do you see the two little ones hard at work on the interior walls of the trough we call the patio pond. They have done a remarkable job with algae control. Seeming so content as they glide along. I've never thought much about a Snail
until our pond adventure began.

Trapdoor snails are scavengers that consume fish food, fish waste & algae in ponds to help keep them clean not green. We've been through the green stage and its a whole lot more enjoyment when the water is clean & clear. In the picture above you can see Freckle, a fancy speckled goldfish to the left of the bubble in the water. Sometimes the fish play with the snails and knock them from their jobs cleaning the walls. Most times they leave them to their work with no cause for disruption. Our darling clean up crew goes everywhere they wish ~ I have even found them outside the pond on the plants. Three in all. Two larger snails and one sort of small one. Some say there is a need for more in our size puddle with fish ~ but three seems like a fabulous number to me.
Maybe its really not that bad being a snail ~ living the aquatic life with fish, a tadpole & plants. Seems pretty simplistic to me.

It's pretty easy to get snails in pond pictures but the fish... not so photogenic. Marmalade is the lone koi (the orange one) living with the snails, a tadpole, fancy goldfish & black moor (yes, the fish all have names). I found her outside the pond on Monday evening ~ thankfully after a rain shower on the concrete floor. She was getting splashed by a few drops from the fountain. Mr. Hag gently picked her up and put her back in the water ~ amazing, no signs of distress and doing well after her jump outside sure glad we were home when she leaped.

Pond snails are said to play an important role in the ponds ecosystem. They are
mother nature's way of keeping natural bodies of water clean for millions of years. Now,
realizing that our delightful little puddle isn't a natural body of water by any means that's one more reason we need these shelled additions. They have a rough tongue designed for scraping algae and other vegetation off everything they crawl across. They breathe through gills just like fish. They move by contracting muscles in a strong flat foot under their shells. These muscles create a rippling movement that pushes the snail on his way.

I'll think about all the benefits of those somewhat cute and always productive
Trapdoor Snails again tomorrow while enjoying morning coffee beside the patio pond.
While I'm pondering something fun and creative to post to get back in the swing.
~one vintage hag

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

A New Recipe ~ Braised Lemon Chicken Thighs ~Yum!

Flower Wower shared a great recipe with me ~
tried it last night... YUM~!
Braised Lemon Chicken Thighs
Serves 4
8 bone in skinless chicken thighs (about 2 3/4 pounds)
Coarse Salt & ground pepper
4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced (I used minced that comes in a jar)
1 cup dry white wine
1/4 tsp. dried thyme
1 lemon, cut into 8 thin slices, plus 1 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp. cold butter, cut into pieces
2 tbsp chopped flat-leaf parsley
Cooked rice, for serving (optional)
1. In a large skillet with tight-fitting lid arrange thighs bone side up; season with salt and pepper. Add garlic, wine & thyme. Bring to a boil; reduce to a simmer cover and cook 30 minutes.
2. Turn chicken over. Place a lemon slice on each piece; cover and continue simmering until tender; about 15 minutes. Leaving garlic & liquid in skillet, transfer chicken & lemon slices to a platter. Cover tightly with foil to keep warm.
3. Bring liquid in skillet to a boil; cook until reduced to 1/2 cup, about 5 minutes. Remove skillet from heat. Add butter, parsley & lemon juice, stir until butter has softened and sauce is smooth. Season with salt & pepper. Serve chicken with sauce and, if desired, rice.
Love a new quick recipe that delicious. This one was wonderful ~
Thank You Flower Wower~!
~one vintage hag

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Have you ever been to a Bachelorette Party?

Have you ever been to a Bachelorette Party?
Guess what, I've only ever been to one and it wasn't much fun at all.
Having a brain block on what to blog about lately, I decided to end my no posting streak to post about something very random. Yet, something you have heard a lot about already.
Yes of course, I'm the Bride's Mom. Lindsey who I refer to often is getting married in July.
(I know you already knew that) ~ so every girl that is getting married has a Bachelorette Party I suppose (I didn't in case you were wondering). When she called to tell me where the Bachelorette Party would be I was excited. These days I guess the party can last all weekend.
That is the case with this Bachelorette Party... What fun~!
The next time I spoke with Lindsey (which is usually everyday) I was shocked & appalled when she invited me. Tickled pink I accepted her invitation to attend this all Girl Party. Realizing that they aren't what I would consider they crazy type (except for inviting the Brides Mom) I'm thrilled to have this weekend away with these girls. It will be a weekend catching up with the girls Lindsey grew up with that she is honored to have in her special day. This weekend ~ we will be shopping, eating out, laying by the pool, relaxing in the hot tub & who knows what else. Can't tell you where as that would spoil another post.
So tell me, have you been to a bachelorette party?
What did you do?

If you happened by this little blog and were looking for a post on happenings at Vintage Village ~ you're in luck. Head on over to the Sea Witches blog and read about our shop.
Most of the time I feel like vintage village is all I ever share with you, so go check out her post today. The picture above is the precious greenhouse offered in this hags spot. One of my favorite shabby things.

~one vintage hag

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Tagged by Sue Sullivan & Murphy ~ 6 things about this hag that will help you get to know me.

Sue at Sullivan Murphy

(one of my favorite blogs, too)

tagged me for a little game where she asked me to share 6 things about myself that will help you get to know this ~one vintage hag
always up for something new to blog about... here goes.

1. Ethel~ not really ~ Lucy either for that matter. I'm very organized, can juggle many balls at once in the air we breath. I do get a bit frantic when I'm behind on any task ~ like to be ahead of the game in all aspects of my little hag life. Also like being on time ~ anywhere I go ~ makes me crazy to be late. Now, I'm not always that prompt with the checkbook balancing but that is about the only thing I procrastinate with.

2. I'm a Mother of three adorable children ~ Lindsey is 24 the only girl ~ the oldest child ~ and you already know this but will tell you once more that she is getting married July 11 of this year. She is the High School Spanish Teacher and a very motivated young lady I must say. I'm certainly honored to be her Mom. Then there's Clayton ~ he is 21 and is in the Army National Guard. He is the oldest boy ~ and works hard to achieve all he wishes for. I'm very proud of his service to our great nation. Last but certainly not least.. there's Sebastian. He is our four legged son and the youngest. We had to have something to take care of and he was added to our family when Clayton was ready to graduate from High School and leave our nest. I am the oldest child in my family ~ I have one younger sister.

3. I'm married to a blond (or very light brown) Italian Precious Man who is the best husband I could ever wish for. He is the best partner & friend that I could ever wish for. (That probably doesn't count since you already know that). Now speaking of hair colors ~ nope, the blond is not natural (although it once was) I chose to be that color instead of gray. Can you believe I told you that? I do have my hair professionally colored though. Scared of the box stuff... but now, I can't continue as that would be giving away many other things about myself.
4. Puddles & Fingerprints... I hate puddles on counters, desk, tables ~ anywhere except rain puddles. My children learned young... to use coasters. The dealers at the village know this too and they either use a paper towel or coaster for their drinks. Funny how the little stuff gets to us... right? Everyone has quirks this happens to be one of mine... you just may not have known this about me. Further... I hate fingerprints so that said Windex is a hot commodity for this hag. When we had all the glass cases in our first antique shop venue I would use Windex by the case to keep them clean.
5. Obsessions & Characteristics... now you probably already know what I'm going to say but why not... I'm obsessed with junque & the hunt for it ~ can't ever get enough junkin... I'm pretty obsessed with collections too. I'm obsessed with projects I attempt to be perfect, although they usually aren't perfection. Kinda of like this patio pond (finally it's clear to the bottom ~ yea!) I worry too much about stuff being right... just ask anyone who knows me. With one exception... I do take shortcuts in our closeout each day at the shop ~ after 15+ years in the business (paying dealers daily) I might skip a few steps but only with those things I find super comfortable. Now, I'm giving you more than 6 can you tell... I am very independent and can do for myself always.
6. I adore friends. To share with, to rejoice with, to surprise with little things, to comfort. Although it may not always seem like I have many friends... I really do. Cherish each with their individual personality's, quirks & talents. I'm grateful for each one. Now in retail... you have to love people otherwise you wouldn't do to well... so I'm as patient as possible most always.
7. One additional one to share... I'm so thankful for the bloggers I've met. I am just a relatively simple antique shop owner who enjoys sharing with others. I am thrilled to be apart of such a wonderful avenue for us all. I would encourage you to spend an afternoon creating a blog of your own if you haven't already. It's so rewarding. Otherwise, I would have never met Sue from Sullivan & Murphy. I have no idea with all her creativity in writing why she would visit this little blog so often... gracious that she does.
Hope that you learned a little about this hag... I'm not much, really. Just a very content Wife, Mother, confident shop co-owner that blogs. My name is Debbie if you were curious ~ just refer to myself more in this forum as a ~hag.
Now, I'm tagging... these 6 blogs to tell us some things about your self then pass it on....
  1. Yvette ~ The Charm House
  2. Becky ~ Behind Blue Eyes
  3. Jocelyn ~ The Painted Fern
  4. Nancy ~ Sassy Trash
  5. Traci G ~ Tied Up Memories
  6. Theresa ~ Time Worn Interiors

Thank you Sue for such a sweet tag ~one vintage hag

Monday, June 8, 2009

Vintage Village June Promotions ~ We've added Altered Art Supplies

Vintage Village Antiques & more...exciting June Promotions
Come Visit if you are in our area...
even if you don't live close by ~ you are invited to participate.
First up... June 15-29, 2009
you are invited to participate in our Salad Bowl Giveaway.
All you have to do is submit your favorite salad recipe with either your phone number or email address (your information won't ever be shared) ~ you can drop it in our salad bowl at the village or send to the shop ~ vintage village 2229 scenic highway snellville, GA 30078
or you can email to us if you'd rather ~
your recipe will be included in our first ever village cookbook ~ if you'd like to use your shop /business name we are happy to include that as well. otherwise, it will just have your first name with recipe submission.
the winner selected will win... the Salad Bowl, Pampered Chef salad tongs, Stonewall Kitchen Salad Dressings & a copy of our cookbook.
We are happy to mail to you if you aren't close enough to pick it up.
We are thrilled to be putting together the vintage village cookbook and hope you will submit your recipe for a chance to win this lovely gift. Once the salad bowl is assembled I will share pictures so you will know exactly what we are giving away.
Then... June 18 ~ 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
A drop in Pampered Chef Demo at vintage village
Drop by for a demonstration of the Spring Pampered Chef Collection ~
the Pineapple Wedger, Apple Wedger, Deep Covered Baker along with the traditional tools such as the Food Chopper. Sample the Pampered Chef newest Pantry items like the Pineapple Rum or Ginger Wasabi Sauce ~ see and taste them using their Dill Mix or the Southwest Seasoning Mix.
More & more today family's are looking for quick, delicious, easy recipes that can be made in 30 minutes or less and all for about $2.00 or less per serving. Let the Pampered Chef
show you practical solutions.

We aren't finished yet... June 16 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
"Bash for Cash"

Cash on the spot for Gold/Sterling/Platinum/Gems/Old Coins
Turn the items you no longer use or want to cash for your summer vacations,
next project or for your wish list this summer.
Our buyers pay more than anyone ~ so, stop by for some refreshments & fun.

Last but certainly not least....
June 27 ~ Vintage Village Parking Lot Sale
come by for bargains in our parking lot all day on this Saturday.
I'll be outside selling with many of the village dealers. Come shop with us
and take home some treasures.

You can see we're busy & always up to fun filled events at vintage village.
Something for everyone.
Sure hope you will join us for any or all these special days.

My latest favorite at the village... this darling little girl captured on a shabby fence
section is rightbeside our counter. Carlique is so talented....
Do you think I need her for my patio?
I do... Wonder if all my feathered friends would shy away from their offerings at the feeders
with this precious addition on the patio...? She even has a bluebird on her shoulder.
My kinda girl. For those of you who peaked in yesterday to share the pond pictures ~ you'll be pleased to know that the water is clearing. More each day, today I can see the bottom. Yea!

That's not all Carlique is up too... when she isn't creating she is
on the hunt for Altered Art Supplies.
Cool vintage wares for use with any Altered Art Project.

Beads by the bag ~ cool vintage bottles ~ even chintz tea pot lids.

Findings too... who would want to alter any of these bags anyway.
They are all packed with goodies. Ask, The Charm House... Yvette took several bags full home when she worked last week at the village. Can't wait to see what she does with them.

Carlique isn't the only one in on the Altered Art Supply at the village...
many of our dealers offer vintage keys, old movie reels, jewelry, spools, corks, scrabble tiles, textiles, twines, ribbons & fibers.
The Sea Witch has many of those currently on our website.
Head on over and take a peak.
Never a dull moment... you won't be disappointed.
We're all hoping to see you this month for our summertime festivities.
~one vintage hag

Sunday, June 7, 2009

The Patio ~ Complete... well, almost.

The Patio... Complete (well, almost...)
Thank you Carlique ~ Sweet Hubby & Flower Wower, too.
With some help from my dear friends Carlique, Flower Wower &
My darling hubby...
The Patio is complete... that is if the water
will ever clear. I've learned that is something that takes time... I'm so, impatient.

New stones from Carlique's back yard,
new filter (my darling hubby installed),
new suggestions from Flower Wower,
new plants floating in the pond & surrounding it...
I simply adore time spent outside on our patio, now.
A challenge its been... but I think we can now call it complete.
That is if the water will now do it's thing... and clear up.
This past week was devoted to getting it all rearranged. As promised
Carlique... with pictures of all you so graciously shared with this hag.
New perennials, new aquatic plants to cool the pond water & even
patio tomato's right beside the pond.
Flower Wower came to lunch... she was so impressed. Which made me feel great.
When I was reading up on the 2chippys with all their hydrangea's ~ I understand completely
how Lulu feels at home with her stunning plants. The only thing you won't find at this hags home is a darling rooster ~ like she has. I wish...
She will be pleased to know that hydrangea's are on my list for the next outing to my new
favorite nursery... Randy's.
Head on over and take a peak... plants, ponds & even a butterfly house.
Randy or Keith will be happy to help in anyway they can. They have wonderful ideas and superior knowledge to achieve whatever look you wish for. Don't forget your checkbook. I promise they have everything you could ever wish for planting or ponding.
Carlique sent me home with Iris, Sedum, Elephant Ear... gosh, it all looks
so healthy in its new great big pot next to the pond. We've enjoyed the creeping gardenias outside the fence... they have a heavenly scent.
Doesn't it look more inviting now?
Do you think I should add anything else...(hydrangea's are coming soon)?
When I'm not working at the village... attending Lindsey's wedding showers or finishing up her wishes for the big day (July 11)... junkin... or busy around our condo...
you will find me on this patio.
Did I tell you we have bird feeders for our feathered friends, too...
and yes, they do drink from the pond.
Wonder if they will be taking baths there this summer? Kinda cool... so long
as we don't attract the local heron.

Another patio favorite... the vintage pink birdbath ~a gift a few years
ago from my business partner & dear friend hag 2 ~ she purchased it from My Vintage Heart @ Vintage Village, of course.
I've removed the glass top this season ~ a home for this fabulous portulaca...
and sedum around the base... that was some from Carlique's.

This week I've chatted with several sweet customers at the village that
poke in to this little blog & others. Oh, do a blog for yourself.
You will love sharing... adore meeting new friends...
this time of year with everything in bloom it's hard to blog about anything else. As I mentioned many times this week, it's hard to come up with creative post to share but sometimes its the little things that mean the most.

So pleased with the new look of our patio.
So pleased to share it with you.
All I need now is the new book "Barefoot" I purchased yesterday at the village,
my glass of iced tea & I'll be set for many afternoons of enjoyment.
One final note... once this book is finished it should be time for Mary Kay Andrew's
new book to be out.... "The Fixer Upper" ~ Can't wait.
I'm spending all my spare time outdoors as you can tell... so much fun this summer.
~one vintage hag
coming tomorrow... a rundown of all the exciting new promotions this month at the village
& a few new photo's too. see you then~!

Monday, June 1, 2009

This Hags Patio Pond

The Hag Pond
for my birthday back in April ~ Nannie gave me some money to be
used on something that I really wanted. With instruction to not use it for
bills (like all of us sometimes do) ~ I decided that since nothing has held
us back since downsizing a few years ago to our condo
that this hags patio needed a water garden of sorts.
Now, I might mention that simply water with plants was never what I intended.
So, online for hours to do some research for this contained pond
that would add a new dimension to our patio at home amongst all the flowers.
Once decided I set out for a Cattle Trough. Having to be deep
enough to withstand the hot & cold temperatures of our Georgia climate.
Once obtained...the pebbles, rocks, old planters that were my grandmothers were added for a place that the fish could hide from the heron or even cats in our area ~ the pump was added with all the necessary chlorine removing chemicals for plants & fish of course.
How fun is this...

Water plants ~ moss balls to help with the algae & even a sweet little green glass alligator.
All that was needed now were fish obviously & a few snails.
Over the course of a few weeks ~ everything needed was in place. Or, so I thought.
I began the arrangement of plants around this relaxing water spectacle.
Everything happy & thriving... feeding those cute little koi & goldfish began. I even gave them all names and begin talking to them when Sebastian and I were on the porch. He thinks that they are his fish... and does the curious checking on them anytime we head out to enjoy time on the patio. The Snails were doing their jobs inside eating all the algae ~
I even added a sweet little black tadpole (not a bullfrog one... I know they eat fish)
with thoughts of this frog eating the bugs that were sure to visit our patio this summer.

Everything was coming right along. Enjoyment, relaxation for sure.
In talking with Carla at the village (and, anyone else who listened about my new found
fun) ~ she mentioned having some large rocks I could have for placement around the outside to hide the black water trough. So, since these pictures were made I have
gotten several of those from her and it looks better that ever outside with plants & old concrete statues at every needed level.
At the height of my project... the algae began taking over. Everyday the past few weeks with our daily showers ~ the water became murky & green.
A trip to the pond store was a must.
What in the world was I doing wrong.....?
Well, guess what... I had several pond problems. You will get a big kick out of what I discovered on my visit with the "pond expert"... to sell more fish food those manufactures tell you to feed them daily. That isn't necessary. The box that contained the "all in one pond kit" ~ didn't have a big enough filter (that should be a lesson to never pay attention to whats on the outside of a box) to circulate the water & clean it as needed.
A few hours later with a new filter in hand ... new fish food instructions & some really pretty floating aquatic plants I was on my way home with everything I needed to give those darling fish the nutrients they need each day & to keep my water clean & circulating...
Nevermind the new check I wrote...
So, soaking wet as it had to rain again during the redo & a bit out of breath... those were all added... a water replacement which made me a nervous wreck was also done where I replaced 1/2 the water convinced that the next morning all the fish would be floating... (they weren't, thank goodness) I'm anxiously awaiting all the murky green water to be corrected which seems to take many days... so impatient I want it clear & clean, now.
Mr. Hag has gotten in on my new hobby of sorts... poor guy. We have redone the inside & outside which now has rocks & plants and even an vintage watering can that will all keep our water cool & those precious fish happy. Funny that they don't seem to mind the algae but I sure do. New pictures a must... but I know you really don't want to see the pond water in transformation. It really does look better each day.
Do you have a pond? Does it have fish? Do you know about Barley Straw?
Did you know fish don't need food each day like we do?
Sometime new to learn with every day.
Like either of us needed anything else to take care of... its been a work in progress.
If you pop in for a visit and I'm not posting... must be because I'm busy on the patio with this new pond. I see now why so many folks have them. It's sure fun ~ but has the added stresses to make sure all is well.
Determined to find enjoyment with this container that I've made a pond.
~one vintage hag