Thursday, November 30, 2017

Shopping in Owosso, MI

As promised in yesterday's post, today I'm sharing what I purchased at Abiding in the Vine tearoom, as well as several other downtown Owosso stores.

If you've read my blog for any length of time you know I love all things associated with Detroit's iconic [now defunct] J.L. Hudson department store - particularly items pertaining to their eateries.

The tearoom gift shop had a Little Bo Peep milk pitcher that Hudson's used to bring to the table when children's milk, hot chocolate or soft drinks were ordered. I already have two, but I couldn't pass up a third for just $7.50.

The backs of the pitchers depict different animals.  This pitcher has a lamb on it.  A spot of the pink edging is worn away with age, but I wanted it anyway.   My hubby calls it 'patena.'  ;-)

It was made by Hall China Co. in East Liverpool, Ohio.

If you're a Hudson's lover and happen to see one of these in an antique shop, now you'll know it came from Hudson's restaurants even though it doesn't have the store's backstamp.

The young gal at the cash register had never heard of J.L. Hudson's, but said her dad used to work in Detroit, so she was going to ask him if he remembered the store.  The younger generation doesn't know what they missed!

As a side note about Hudson's... Dan Gilbert's development company is set to break ground tomorrow at the site of the former Hudson's downtown store for his two-building redevelopment project that will house offices, apartments and retail space.  One of the buildings will become Detroit's tallest skyscraper, exceeding the RenCen.  I hope he gives recognition to J.L. Hudson's somewhere in the project.

Back to Abiding in the Vine gift shop...

Linda purchased a 3-pc. Wedgwood children's set by Beatrix Potter as an early Christmas present for me.  I think I see a Beatrix Potter presentation looming on the horizon!

This set depicts the Tale of Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle, the 6th in the book series written and illustrated by Beatrix Potter.  I had to do a little homework on Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle.  She's a hedgehog washerwoman who lives in a tiny cottage in the Lake District. A child, Lucie, happens upon the cottage and stays for tea.  Lucie was a real-life childhood friend of Beatrix Potter, as well as the vicar's daughter.  Thanks, Linda!

From the tearoom, we set out on foot to see what shops of interest we could find.  The first one to grab my attention was a .5 and .10 store.  I didn't know they existed anymore!   The most common ones that I remember were Kresge's, Woolworth's, and Ben Franklin's, but this is a Springrove.  Have you heard of them before?  The sales clerk said there are five left in the state - all in small cities where they haven't been over taken by Dollar Stores.  

This dime store was so much fun to browse.  It actually felt like stepping back in time, minus the squeaky wooden floors, ceiling fans, and soda fountain. Look at the old-fashioned enclosed candy counter with individual bins, where a sales clerk has to weigh the candy on scales. 

I used to always buy my two oldest children Brach's Bridge Mix and Maplenut Goodies from candy counters, so both of these candies are nostalgic for them, particularly my son, Steve.  He's trying to lose weight, but I couldn't resist buying him a pound of Bridge mix!  He texted me this morning saying he was enjoying it last night until his wife took it away and said he'd had enough for one day!  ;-)

My set of Old Maid cards are bent and worn from the five older grandchildren.  They dog-eared the Old Maid card to prevent unexpectedly pulling it. When I saw a box of Old Maid cards in the dime store, with the Old Maid having tea, I knew they had to come home with me!  A new set for the three youngest grands and one great-grand to enjoy!

I saw a cute mug for my hubby that came home with me too.  It suits him to a tea tee!

From the dime store we crossed the street and went into Owosso Floral & Gifts.  I didn't make any purchases there [Linda made up for me ;-)], but it was definitely fun to browse.  One of my favorite blogs is Between Naps on the PorchThe November 20th post was all about vintage cars and trucks bringing home the Christmas tree, plaid wrapping paper and more.  You'll have to go to the blog and read it for yourself, but it seemed as though this shop was in perfect sync with the blog. I was graciously granted permission to take photos to share.

They had a tea display which I HAD to photograph.  The owner said they had an upcoming women's shopping event where a 'for Tea's sake' rep would be present and serve the tea.  I had never heard of this company before so had to research it when I got home. They're based in Toronto, Canada, and their business was launched in July 2015.

From the florist we went to Apple Tree Lane - a gourmet food and gift shop.  I didn't need a hat, but for some reason I couldn't pass this one up.  It a winter packable hat [which means it springs back into shape even when squished in a suitcase] made of wool.  It's a Victoria Leland design, reasonably priced at $24.99.

The last shop on our Owosso excursion was The Vintage Barrel, located on W. Exchange St.  It's a brand new antiques, vintage and crafts store that will have its official Grand Opening this Saturday. The owner told us her deceased uncle was a bachelor and loved collecting vintage dishware.  She had boxes she hadn't even sorted through yet.  His possessions and her acquisition of them was the impetus for her new business. 

I could have gone wild in this store, but I used restraint.  The first thing that caught my eye were two Elvis Presley Russell Stover candy tins.  My youngest son was born two years after Elvis died, but he's a huge fan of his.  Go figure! ;-)  When I saw the tins I knew they'd make a cute 'bonus' Christmas gift.  I can put a pair of socks in one, and maybe pencils, pens, paper clips, etc. in the other one for his desk drawer at work.  [He doesn't usually read my blog, so I should be safe sharing it here.]  Her prices were very reasonable.  These tins were $3 each.

Most of you know I love blue dishware, and collect Hazel-Atlas Moderntone-Cobalt blue Depression glass.  She had the largest collection of it I've ever seen - even at Depression glass shows.  I splurged and purchased eight double-handled soup bowls with underplates for $48.  If Owosso wasn't 82 miles away I might have waited until Saturday when she's giving up to 25% off, but they're still a bargain.

By now it was approaching 4:30 in the afternoon, so we decided to head for home.  As we drove out of town I took the photo below.   I love how you can see the sun setting off to the side in the distance [even though I'm not fond of losing daylight so early].  It was as if the sky was saying "the end of a perfect day!"  

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Abiding in the Vine Tearoom

Yesterday my friend, Linda, and I went on a day trip to Owosso, Mi - a small city about 82 miles northwest of where I live.  Their 2016 population is listed as 14,670.  We had heard about Abiding in the Vine tearoom, and mentioned several times that we wanted to visit, but it didn't happen until yesterday. 

It was an unusually warm November day [60 degrees], with breezy, clear skies, so we were happy to shed our cumbersome winter coats.

As we drove down Main Street in downtown Owosso, we saw a phone booth - a very unusual sight in today's modern technological world of iphones.  I doubt it's still functional, but it adds to the charm of this very quaint city.

Abiding in the Vine has been open for four years, and Owosso is the perfect city for it.  Its name is taken from Scripture - John 15, vs. 1-8 where Jesus tells His disciples [and us] that He is the Vine, and they [we] are the branches, and if we abide in Him we will bear Christian fruit [love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control] in our lives.  



We had reservations for noon, and when we arrived a Red Hat gathering was in progress as well as small groupings like ours.  Patrons came and went while we were there, so it's a popular spot, and beautifully decorated for Christmas.

I loved the old building with its original brick walls, tin ceiling, and small vignettes.

~ Our table ~

~ Our servers were McKayla [L] and Michele [R] ~

~ Loved their high vase centerpieces that didn't obstruct our view. ~

They have a large selection of Metropolitan Teas to choose from, and Linda and I both ordered a pot of Cranberry Orange black tea.  Our teapots had removeable infuser baskets for steeping the loose leaves in.  On the table was a teabag caddy to set the infuser basket on when it was removed from the teapot.  They do it right at this tearoom!

Linda and I ordered the "Full Tea" for only $15 [excluding tax and gratuity].  You can't beat that price anywhere!

We had a choice of salad or soup with our tea.  Linda got a salad, and I got a cup of Tomato Basil soup.  It was yummy!

Below is the picture our server [Michele] took to post on their Facebook page.

We each got our own crystal tiered server with savories, a Pumpkin Scone with mock Devonshire cream, and six desserts.   There were two open-faced Cucumber sandwiches on White Bread rounds, two Ham and Cheese rectangle finger sandwiches on Pumpernickel Bread, garnished with an Olive and Cherry Tomato, a Phylo cup of Egg Salad, and a slice of Quiche.  I forgot to take a close-up of my individual plate.  Sorry!

I'm trying to watch calories since Thanksgiving, so I only ate the Lemon Bar and French Macaron, and had the rest boxed to bring home to my hubby.

Picture of the lovely DYI glass tiered servers below.  Wouldn't it be cute in the center of a table with a teapot on top, scones on the middle plate, and teacups and saucers surrounding it on the bottom.  I might attempt it for my next Bible study since my menu and tablescape is always simple.

They have a small retail area, and I'll post tomorrow what I purchased.  When we left the tearoom we walked around the quaint downtown area of Owosso, and did some shopping.  The city even has a dime store - I haven't seen a dime store in YEARS!  [Tomorrow's post too.]

There were hats available for those who wanted to wear one during teatime.  The sign on the brick wall says, "Girls just wanna have fun!"

~ Another vignette near the restrooms. ~

By the time we left, the tearoom had cleared out considerably so I was able to take a picture without being too intrusive.  

This is a lovely tearoom and I highly recommend it for local readers.  Make a day trip to Owosso, and have lunch at Abiding in the Vine, and spend the rest of the day shopping like Linda and I did.  You'll return home feeling it was a beautiful day, and time well spent!  We will definitely do a return visit.

To be continued...

Friday, November 24, 2017

So Much To Be Thankful For!

Another Thanksgiving has come and gone, and the 2017 'Holiday Season' has officially begun.  I hope you had a Happy Thanksgiving! 

Our son, Steve, and his wife, Sharon, hosted Thanksgiving at their house, and we all arrived shortly after 12:00 noon.  I made the Turkey and Dressing, Amish Noodles, Corn Pudding, and Yeast Rolls, while others filled in with side dishes of Cheesy Potatoes and Sweet Potatoes. Our daughter, Lori, brought Apple Crisp and Pumpkin Pie.  Nobody left the table hungry!

[Brooke, Izzy, Landon, and Ellie]

[Jeremy & Samantha]

[Sharon's parents, Larry & Sheena, and Brianna]

I tried a new recipe for Cornbread Dressing baked in a Bundt pan this year, and loved it.  It'll be my new way of baking dressing from now on.  It unmolded perfectly as in the picture below, and so attractive and easy to serve.  The recipe can be found here.

[Internet photo:]

Granddaughter, Brianna, is the only one of the grands who drinks tea on a consistent basis, and she introduced me to a new brand yesterday, Yogi Tea, based in Oregon.  I spent time at their website today, and they have a lot of teas specifically for women.

Lounging around after dinner watching football before home videos.

~  Once Daddy's princess, always his princess!  ~

Sweet great-granddaughter, Evelyn Rose [Evie], turned 6 months old on Thanksgiving Day and everyone enjoyed her immensely!  Isn't she adorable?

~ Brooke, Izzy, and Ellie ~

Multi-talented Brooke is currently into photography, so she had fun taking lots of pics of Izzy.  Izzy doesn't wear glasses, but they provided a different look for the photo op.  ;-)  Yikes!  Izzy's growing up way too fast!

~ Papa and Ellie ~

We played a few rounds of 'Catch Phrase' later in the evening before everyone began packing up to go home around 10:00 o'clock.  It was a great family day, and I give thanks to the Lord for His many blessings to us.

No Black Friday shopping for me today. I'm homebound working on my presentation for Shore Pointe Assisted Living this Sunday - Turkeys, Pilgrims, and Other Thanksgiving Traditions.