Booktalk ~ Vintage- and Antique Books (and Some Fun Facts) πŸ“š

Hello my lovely friends πŸ’•

Welcome to today’s Booktalk πŸ€“
Last time I told you about my new obsession – collecting vintage- and antique books.
In my hunt for journaling stuff I come across a lot of them, and most of the beauties land on my bookshelf, not on the ‘chopping block’


You may notice that all of them are ‘naked’. There is a reason for that.

If you’re a serious bookcollector and/or bookseller, you might want to skip this paragraph – it’s not gonna be pretty! 😬

I don’t like dustjackets. There, I said it!
I collect and show off my vintage and antique books because I love the way they look under the jackets. The woven cover, the lettering is just so beautiful. Much prettier than some shiny, plastic-y wrap. So I take them off. But I don’t stop there…hold on to your hat…some I even cut up to use in my book-themed journal. πŸ™ˆ
I recently found out, that that’s a big no-no in the bookworld. Apparently the dustjacket plays a big part in the resale value. A torn one diminishes the value considerably, a missing one…well, forget it!
Good thing I didn’t find a truly valuable book yet. Or I’d feel like those poor souls at the ‘Antique Roadshow’ that are being told “If you hadn’t cleaned it it’ll be worth $100.000, but you did so it isn’t“. Never fails! πŸ˜‹

So, in conclusion – if you wanna make money with the lovely books you find, keep the dustjacket! 

Here are some of the jackets waiting to be repurposed 😊

 Okay, booksellers, you can come back now! πŸ˜Ž It’s safe!

In the title I promised you some fun facts…here’s one:

In Ankara, Turkey, the sanitation workers opened a library fully stocked with books they found on their routes.
How wonderful is that?
It started when the workers pulled books out of the landfill, and brought them to the depot. At first it was only a small book collection for workers and their families only. Then word got out and people started donating books, instead of throwing them in the bin.
Now the books (about 6.000 of them) have their own building, and everybody gets to use the library.
I just love this story!

Reading and eating chocolate? We’re starting a new tradition this year πŸ˜πŸ’•πŸŽ„


Also…definitely happening this year πŸ˜ƒ

Speaking of reading to the kids…

That’s all the time we have today 😊 I hope you join me again next time!

Until then πŸ’•

Recipe (related) Friday ~ My New Cookbook πŸ˜€

Hello and ‘Happy Friday’ my lovely friends 😍 Thanks for visiting! 

Look what I found at our library’s book sale (minus spoon and whisk 😝)

Always on the lookout for new recipes I didn’t hesitate for a second and put it in my (big πŸ˜‰) pile. 

And what a gem it is! πŸ€“  Not only has it recipes from every part of the country, there are also the author’s travel stories, and regional photos from days gone by. πŸ™‚

I plan to cook and share – starting next week! πŸ˜€

Here’s the index for part one 

Anything in particular you definitely wanna see here soon? Let me know! πŸ€— I’m looking forward to your comments/suggestions! 

Now I’m gonna go sit on the patio, listen to the lovely birds, and read some more. 😎

Until next time πŸ’•

~ Tina xoxo 

What’s in a word? ~ Dictionary Day πŸ“š

Hello my lovely friends πŸ’• How nice of you to peek in!

It’s another Dictionary Day! Let’s take a word and see what all is ‘in it’. Here we go…

Today’s word is

🏺 Amphora 🏺

~1. Here’s what the dictionary has to say

~2. Wikipedia knows a few more details

~3. It’s various purposes were

a.) serving jar for wine and oil

b.) a liquid measure in the ancient world- Greece = 9 gallons; Rome = 6 gallons, 7 pints

c.) when set on a foot, as a commemorative vase awarded the victors in contests

~4. Eric Rhodes mentioned one in this beautiful poem

in the crisp autumn
air of humanity,
my heart sings
like a lark in the morning’s light.
my soul longs
for your presence, my love,
and in a world
separate from mine
I would embrace you,
like the sea
around the shore.
I am invigorated
amid the heavenly bodies
which allow for such
a perfect union.
with love,
I pour like wine
from this amphora,
shaped by the great potter,
into the still lake
of serenity
in which you swim.

Eric Rhodes

~5. An amphora is mentioned in a few songs

– ‘Aquarium Lyrics’ by Misanthrope 

– ‘Elysium (Eternity is Nigh) by Incantation 

– ‘John has a good Heart, but…’ by Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso 

~6. I think Amphoras male a beautiful ornamental decor in any style home 😊

I love the one with the owls! 😍 Which one is your favorite?

Well, I do believe that’s all for now. I truly had fun researching for- and telling you everything I found out about these beauties. I hope you enjoyed it too! 😊

See you soon πŸ’•

Until then

~Tina xoxo 

Books ~ My Year in ‘Review’

I love books! They’ve been a part of my life ever since I can remember. Even though I’ve been warned …. πŸ˜‚

πŸ’₯~from a newspaper article, 1914 

Over the years I enjoyed numerous genres – the common denominator being …crime. It was always some kind of murder mystery ~ Agatha’s Miss Marple (of course!), Sue Grafton, David Rosenfelt, Susan Wittig Albert to name just a few I can remember. Then came Nora Roberts! Everything Nora Roberts…not always a murder mystery, but mysterious nonetheless.
If I had to pick a favorite, I would say Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum! Right?!  πŸ€“    I have to ask…Ranger or Morelli? 😍

For quite some time now I’m reading (and enjoying immensely) ‘Cozy Mysteries’.
I think my love for those began with Jessica Fletcher. Yep, ‘Murder, she wrote’ is an all-time favorite of mine.  πŸ€“   I love the small-town setting, the everyday life of ordinary people, the clever way she solved every murder in her vicinity. The way her life was going, I would have been afraid to be close to her – I just know that I’d either be the victim, or the suspect    πŸ˜ But it’s fun being on the outside looking in.

Back to 2016 and my ‘cozies’.
~1. I started the year finishing the (seemingly) last installment of Madelyn Alt’s ‘Bewitching Mystery’ series – ‘Home for a Spell’. I really enjoyed this series, and I’m quite sad that it looks like there won’t be another book. Nobody seems to know what happened to Ms. Alt. There are rumors that a new book will be released soon…We’ll see, I keep an eye on it.

~2. Once I finished this one, I browsed through the ‘customers also bought’ section, and discovered Bailey Cates’ “A Magical Bakery Mystery” series. Oh, fun!
Cookies, Scones, Witches, Spells, and Recipes (for the cookies, not the spells!     )
Having a small business myself I love the ‘small bakery’ setting! The good news is that there are seemingly endless suggestions for me! If you like to take a closer look, check it out here πŸ“š

Don’t you love it when you discover a book, and then find out that it is a part of a series and you get to read them all right away?! When you don’t have to wait a year for the next one?
Well, that happened with the ‘Magical Bakery’ series, and also with…

~3. ‘A Witchcraft Mystery’ by Juliet Blackwell


By now I’m not just looking for the small business setting, but also for the ‘witchy’ part.
I find the magical, paranormal, mysterious very fascinating, and Juliet Blackwell really hit a home-run with this series!
The series starts with ‘Secondhand Spirits’. Here we meet Lily Ivory, vintage clothing shop owner, and witch. After years of traveling, trying to ‘fit in’ somewhere, she finally feels at home in San Francisco. Then murder and mayhem start happening – and she has to team up with other ‘undercover’ witches to solve murders and some very ‘unusual’ occurrences. If you wanna dive right in, or read a sample here you go

~4. About half-way through the year I stumbled upon ‘It Takes a Witch’ – you can see why that caught my eye   😊  It’s the first one in the ‘Wishcraft’ series. The first one!!! Eureka!
Some more witches – this time with a little twist! Darcy lives in a town called ‘Enchanted Village’ surrounded by other ‘Wishcrafters’ – meaning they get to grant wishes- and other magical humans. Together they follow their magical paths, and solve a few crimes on the side.


~5. This series is a regular one – no witches, demons, or other otherwordly spirits.
The authour is Diane Vallere, and these two are from her ‘Material Witness Mystery Series’.
It was a fun read. Small town (and small business  πŸ€—  ) with likeable characters, the mystery is not too obvious, and it’s beautifully written. Overall a great new series, and I’ll be definitely looking for the next (third) book.

~6. I ended the year with a brandnew favorite – the ‘Pyper Rayne’ series. The first book is called “Spirits, Stilettos, and a Silver Bustier” by Deanna Chase.
This series is a spin-off of the ‘Jade Calhoun’ series, and is an amazing ride.
Pyper is a coffee-shop-owner and a medium. Murder, Mystery, Ghosts, a Witch, and a little bit of love  – doesn’t get better than this, right?!  If you wanna meet Pyper and her friends or just read a sample…here it is

Most of these books I found on Amazon* – and I must say, I love the ‘download a sample’ feature. They give you enough pages (for free!) to let you judge the book (so you don’t have to do it by the cover  πŸ˜‰ )

I just started a new (to me) series….also by Diane Vallere- I’ll tell you about that next time! πŸ€—

Until then

~Tina xoxo
*I am not affiliated with Amazon or the authors. I just love books, want to share the joy I found in these stories. πŸ’•

Do you believe in ‘398.2’?

Before I start telling you about today’s topic, let me show you this…


I have been trying to corral my thoughts …put into coherent terms as to what I want in the new year. But – sometimes my thoughts are like a rookie flea circus! Now you see them, now you don’t! Especially when I’m as busy as I was over the last few weeks! Anyway…today I happened across this picture, and thought ‘Eureka’ ~ this is it. Exactly what my topsy-turvy mind has been trying to tell me!
So – in the spirit of ‘learning new things’ I followed up on a sidebar-ad on Facebook (to be honest, usually I don’t pay much attention to those, but this one caught my eye simply because I had no idea what ‘398.2’ is). I got really curious, and looked it up…do you know? No? I can tell you now!


398.2 is the call number (in the Dewey decimal System) for the folk-stories and fairy tales. Fairies! I was so intrigued by the idea of a whole section at the library dedicated to these delicate, dainty creatures, that I hopped in the car, drove down the street to my little heaven (if there weren’t a 6-lane road between me and there, I would’ve walked…I swear!) went to the non-fiction section, and, lo and behold, there they were!


You should check your library for ‘398.2’ books! They hold cute, interesting, and fascinating stories – in my case mostly from Ireland and Scotland.

During my search I also found images of fairy gardens – definitely on my ‘to-do’ list for this spring!


I love them – and the little table-top one would be a great project for grey winter days! When I get around to it, I’ll let you know (and show you the result)

Well ~ I must say ~ this ‘learn-new-things’ idea is quite satisfying, and I will do a whole lot more of that! Even if it’s just little things like ‘398.2’

I will let you go now – maybe to the library? – and say
…for reading! I hope you enjoyed and will be back for more!
Until then
Tina xoxo

Books, bookmarks, and a little bit of history

October is ‘National Book Month’….how did I miss that…until now?!
It reminded me that I wanted to share the pictures of my recent trip to the bookstore with you.
Now you’re sitting there with raised eyebrows, thinking…”Yes, and? She’s off her rocker, writing about visiting a store!” Right? πŸ˜‰
But wait ’til you see the pictures! This is not an ordinary bookstore… it is a four (4!!!) story paradise… well, if you love books, that is!

When you walk in you see this…wpid-20150316_122108.jpg

Oooohh… I heard the angels sing! πŸ˜‡
Pretty much everything is displayed cover up, front and center! So you find gems you would normally never know about. Since I am, I admit it, a ‘judge a book by its cover person’, (well, most of the time) it’s a perfect layout. Pretty clever marketing! 😜

3rd floor…


View from the 4th floor


For this pic I had my eyes closed when I stepped to the banister, held out the camera, and snapped the photo! Even looking at it now makes me slightly dizzy.

Now, I wanna add that I always have and always will shop and support small businesses. Nothing beats the personal attention, the charm, and the beautiful displays, so different from store to store! 😍

But this visit to this enormous bookstore was almost like sightseeing. I truly enjoyed it, but I won’t have to go every week!

Speaking of sightseeing…now I should probably mention that this bookstore is at the ‘Country Club Plaza’ in Kansas City. The Plaza is a unique shopping district, built in the 1920s by the J.C.Nicholas Co. It was the first shopping district in the world structured to cater to the automobile. Pretty cool, huh?! This entire shopping area is of Spanish architecture, influenced by the buildings in Seville, Spain, and all of the structures are decorated with imported Mexican tile or lace-like terracotta. The Plaza was completed in 1922, but there have been renovations since then. For instance, in 1977 a major flood caused severe damage to many buildings, and prompted a vast renovation.
Here are some pictures of the beautiful tile decor…




Delightful, isn’t it? πŸ˜„

Alrighty…that’s it for today!

Oh, no… wait! One more thing, somewhat related. After that trip, I felt inspired to replenish my bookmark display at the shop. I’ve been making beaded markers, but this time I designed/created a new style. These are made of leather bands with pretty glass charms and beads at either end. Take a look…


Okay…this is really the end (for now) πŸ™‚
Thanks for reading! I hope you enjoyed this little trip ~ let me know your thoughts, or share your memorable doings/observation.

Tina xoxo