Tuesday, February 26, 2013

My Vintage Home: Playroom Decorations

At the beginning of this month, I shared with you all my plans to redecorate and reorganize my home as well as add a vintage feel to my everyday living. I mean, your home is your sanctuary, right?

Last time showed you my children's rooms and my hopes, wishes, and dilemmas in redecorating them. I am still staring at the paint booklets that I have and I am thinking of either going with a shade of blue for both rooms (because I want them to flow into another-almost being the sibling of the other) or a shade of green/blue.

My plan is to score the paints during the month of March so that during the month of April we can clear out the rooms, paint, and begin the process of redecorating. I decided that the touch of vintage that will be represented in each room (the children's bedroom and playroom) will be in the form of decoration. I also decided to keep my daughters furniture in the main room and store the boys furniture in the garage. The playroom is so small, I really don't want any large pieces of furniture in there.

And since their ceiling fans, curtain rods, and furniture are all white-the dash of color will come from the walls as well as the decorations. This will hopefully give me a shabby chic yet vintage look and feel.

I decided I will focus on my search for decorations in Etsy and The Land of Nod. I found so many great pieces in both places. I love the look of the photo of the room above-so that is now my inspiration.

Here are some things I found on the website in The Land of Nod:
 The suitcases are another from of storage-I love storage! I adore this growth chart-it can be used for all three of my babies and I adore how it has bunnies on it hehe The theater you see can be changed into a food stand and a post office so its very versatile and I like that-more bang for your buck, right?
 I love the wall storage bins as well as the idea of stacking crates. Their main bedroom will hold their bookcase and a toy bin (both white) so the playroom really need smaller and more compactable storage. I am also looking for something for the living and foyer-something where I can hang the kids outerwear, put shoes away, and book bags because two years from now all three will be in school and mama need order in the home! LOL
These pieces were found in Etsy. I adore this house shaped shadow box-small little things can be placed in it. I also love the idea of including some vintage toys-as decoration only. And let us not forget banks! Isn't this clever dutch girl bank the cutest thing ever!

Do you like my finds? Are there any shops you would recommend to me? (thanks!)


Monday, February 25, 2013

The Anne Frank Center USA

The Anne Frank Center USA

I was twelve years old when I first read The Diary of Anne Frank. I don't know why I wanted to read it, I do recall knowing about WWII and some things about the Holocaust because my grandfather fought in the war. And I was just a really, really empathetic and reflective child. Such a weirdo-I know hehe But I guess not much as changed. I read it because I wanted to. And I recall that while I was reading it, I could relate to so much Anne was talking about. I suppose we were both reflective and deep thinking children.

I also recall finding out after reading it that she died so close to the camp she was in being liberated. That just broke my heart and it still does.
Anne Frank's Diary
I began journaling at the age of nine. I still have all of my journals. I journaled from nine until my late 20's. My journaling went from writing about me to writing about my children and now I have scrapbook albums and baby books. I know how therapeutic writing can be and I know the power that releasing emotions/thoughts can be for your being. I can only imagine how writing in her journal must have pulled Anne through some tough times while she was in hiding.

This weekend I had the pleasure of going to The Anne Frank Center USA in Manhattan. I have never been there before but my friend Sean from The Fictionista mentioned this center to me and encouraged me to go. So grateful I did. Thank you Sean!
Anne Frank's Family
My husband and I were greeted by an outstanding staff who showed us around and answered all of our questions. A copy of Anne's dairy is on display, the original being in The Secret Annex. We were able to see many photos of the Frank family that I have never seen before. I must say it was lovely to see them up close and in person. I felt more connected to them. I thought a few times to myself, that family is our family. I am a mother now with three small children, what wouldn't I do for them...I can now not only relate to Anne but to her mother and father-Edith and Otto Frank.
There was also a detailed time line that we viewed. I learned SO much from reading it!
We also watched a documentary on Anne Frank that I found fascinating and emotional. So many questions and thoughts were swimming in my head afterwards. I did find some answers to my questions via the ipad. I loved it. I got to watch an interview with Miep Gies who helped hide and care for the Franks and others while they were in hiding. Just to give you a taste of that interview-when asked why she helped them-her answer was, "because it was the natural thing to do." She was an incredible woman who never saw herself as someone special because of what she did. She passed on in 2010 and the beautiful age of 100. Bless her.
The center also hosts educational workshops and lectures as well as hosting various exhibits throughout the year. Anne Frank has been special to me for a very long time but now her whole family is. Now that I am a woman and a mother, I can really appreciate her story on a deeper and different level. I can also now look at things from a different angle and ask myself some harder questions. Questions like "why do these things happen?" and "what would I have done?"

The day I went out was a deary, rainy, and cold day in New York. I had a fabulous outfit planned that was inspired by Anne Frank but I would have to wear that another time. I threw on my trusty vintage jeans, a white blouse, black cardigan, and a snood. I did wear a brooch that was purchased via Etsy from a woman who was selling her late aunts jewelry. It is from the 1940's and she told me it was from during the war. I love simple pieces like these-don't you?

When you get a chance, please stop by The Anne Frank Center USA. It is located just two blocks North of the World Trade Center site. It is something you should not miss out on. And their staff was truly phenomenal. My husband and I chatted with one of the staff members for almost an hour and a half. He was just glowing with goodness and good energy. Talking to him was like talking to a kindred spirit. 

So, my head and my heart were filled and satisfied that day. Afterwards, we went out to eat at a cool little joint in Manhattan that I will share with all of you in Hey Doll Vintage Magazine's Issue Two coming out on March 2nd!


Friday, February 22, 2013

Oh La La...Springtime Dresses

While the snow continues to fall and the chills of the winter go up and down our spines, I feel it necessary to look at something that will keep me inspired since I love for warmer days. Eager for the spring breeze to go through my hair and long walks to the park with my children, I look at springtime dresses to remind me that warmer days are coming. I am also reminded that now is the best time to snatch these kind of dresses! So, feast your eyes on some of my finds, all from Etsy because I believe in supporting small businesses, don't you?
1950's Dress from aiseirigh
1940's Pink Dress from CeliaVintageStars
Stunning French Couture Dress from Jumblelaya
1950's Stunning Green Dress from RococoVintage
1950's/1960's Party Dress from RococoVintage
Floral 1950's Dress from aiseirigh

Are you inspired yet? Do you feel a little spring coming your way? I sure hope so! I know I do!


Tuesday, February 19, 2013

My Vision Board: Six Months Later...

Vision Board

I cannot believe it has already been SIX months since I created and posted my Vision Board in my kitchen! For those of you who may be new to my blog, you can read all about my Vision Board creation here.

I am curious to know, do any of you have a Vision Board? If so, has it worked for you? I started my Vision Board because I needed to bring change into my life. The past five years have been very difficult for my family and I in some ways (as it is in life from time to time) and I just didn't want to stay where I was at. Simple as that. I needed change. And I needed to feel as though I have acquired some level of success for myself-not only as a wife and mother-but something entirely for me.

I included photos on my Vision Board to help me focus on my goals/dreams and I also included words around the images. I figured I should write down the impossible or rather what seems impossible at that point.

So, I decided since it has been six months since I hung up my dreams on my kitchen wall and now it's time to look back and see if anything of those dreams have been fulfilled.
The top portion of my board focuses on writing and being published. Well, as many of you may know I was published just this month in Vintage Life Magazine! Not only was I published there but also in Folie Vintage Magazine and I started an emagazine with Brittany from Va-Voom Vintage called Hey Doll Vintage Magazine. Oh my! I had no clue that was going to happen!

Out of the five dresses I posted in the photo, I did score one of them and I wore it to the Downton Abbey Event in December. I also have a photo of a woman dressed in patriotic colors, I didn't know this then but I am now leaning towards clothing and accessories with the patriotic colors of red, white, and blue. Who knew?
Some other dreams are in the beginnings of happening such as; a few creative photo shoots are in the works, I may be able to go to the WWII Weekend in Reading, PA this June, and I will start my redecoration of my home starting this spring with the children's rooms. A few other dreams will take some more time to work towards but they will be worked on, I assure you!

I cannot say how thrilled and relieved I am that these changes have been made in my life. I also feel incredibly grateful for all the support my family and friends have given me especially on the days that my struggles were the hardest. To them, I always send my love and thanks.

One last important goal/dream that I wrote on my Vision Board was to gain 110% confidence in my post-babies body. I am happy to say that I am about at 90% and it feels incredible and freeing. I have almost reached my goal and I know that I will make it. I don't want to ever be trapped in that state of thinking where I look back and ponder on the figure I had before or ponder on the figure I can have in the future. I want to accept and admire what I look like right now.

I hope you are inspired to create your own Vision Board or even to set some goals for yourself for this new year. Know that if you believe in yourself, if you have faith in who you are-then you CAN achieve your goals and make your dreams come true. I personally do a double whammy and I sent out my goals/dreams (via my Vision Board) out to the Universe and I also pray every night. I believe strongly that since we have this one life, we should strive to make it a fantastic one!

Here is to dreaming and making those dreams come true!!


Monday, February 18, 2013

Documentary: Been Rich All My Life

Been Rich All My Life
"Been Rich All My Life" (2006)

I watched the five most beautiful women that I have laid my eyes on in a very long time. It has been a dew days since I have finished watching this documentary and their lives still haunt me. I am still thinking about them, wondering how the surviving women are and wonder if people will continue to dance like they did. I say this because these women were a part of history...American History. I cannot tell you how appreciative I am to Heather MacDonald who is the one who created this documentary. Because of her, we now all can view a piece of history and never forget!
The film centers around these five amazing women; Bertye Lou Wood, Cleo Hayes, Elaine Ellis, Fay Ray, and Marion Coles. They each were chorus dancers during the late 1920's and 1930's, mainly at the Apollo and the Cotton Club. Yes, I just wrote the Apollo and the Cotton Club! If anyone knows anything about New York, they should know that those two spots were the swinging spots in Harlem during those times. They were the place to be for the best entertainment in New York City.
Here is Bertye Lou Wood (Bertha) at her first professional job in 1928 with the famous Addison Cary as her dance director. Bertye Lou as her friends called her knew Bill Robinson (Bojangles) and Duke Ellington! Imagine knowing those great artists, I mean having worked with them too. Swoon!
Bertye Lou raised three sons on her own and danced for over twenty years. When people stopped hiring chorus dancers she eventually became a bartender as did most of the ladies from The Silver Belles. She danced well into her 90's and then when she couldn't dance anymore she would show up at the rehearsals and cheer her friends on.
The group was brought together by Geri Kennedy who recognized that many of the men from those times were remembered but the women weren't. So she got Bertye Lou, Cleo, Elaine, Fay and Marion together to perform starting in 1985. At the time they were in their 70's and 80's and it didn't stop them from putting on their dancing shoes and glittery outfits and put on one heck of a show!
You not only learn about these incredible women but you also learn about the history they made during the Harlem Renaissance. I loved hearing the stories the women would share because they were sharing our collective history. The history of NY, the history of women, the history of America....I am so grateful that this documentary was made because today only two out of the five Silver Belles are with us.

I don't want to give too much away but I highly, highly recommend you viewing this when you have the chance. Each of these women will stay in your heart and you will never forget them. I know I never will. Watching this made me wish I knew them, made me wish I could have heard their stories in person. And that is a testament to their love of life and their vivacious spirits.

You can learn more about these women on TootsCrackin. I may have to consider doing a giveaway soon about this documentary-that's how much I loved it hehe

Have you seen this documentary? What do you think about these women?


Sunday, February 17, 2013

Bunny's Valentine's Day Giveaway WINNER!

Thank you all for joining in my Valentine's Day Giveaway! I loved your comments and thoughts about the 1940's. I really enjoyed reading every one of them! Thank you!

The winner is Patti from They Don't Make 'Em Like They Used To!!!! CNGRATS! 

Email at bunnysvictory@yahoo.com

Thank you again for participating and keep a look out for many  more giveaways in the near future!!


Thursday, February 14, 2013

Oh l'amour...

Happy Valentine's Day to all of you my dear, sweet readers. My hope for each of you is that everyday is filled with great love and joy.

Here are some images I found from the 1940's that I just adore. Aren't they just divine? I hope you think so! Oh l'amour....isn't love grand?


Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Love Child: Old Hollywood's Best Kept Secret

Would that surprise you to know that a few of Hollywood's elite had children out of wedlock and in many cases hiding their true identities until they were grown adults? Perhaps this new isn't as shocking as it would have been seventy years ago but I must say I was slightly shocked by how some of these lifelong secrets were hidden.

Those women who kept a Love Child (a child conceived out of wedlock)were many times married to others. I feel like either way these women had to keep their secrets close to their chest. Imagine hiding the full identity of your beloved child from them for their whole life. Or spending you own life denying the truth, to yourself, to others, and to your love child.

Old Hollywood's best kept secret...the Love Child (do you have that song stuck in your head now? hehe Sorry!).

Geraldine Fitzgerald + Orson Welles = Michael Lindsay-Hogg
Love Child Michael Lindsay Hogg
 I came across this story during my many sessions of reading and research. Geraldine Fitzgerald was a Hollywood actress who hailed from Ireland and starred in films such as; Wuthering Heights (1939) and Dark Victory (1939). For modern audiences she was in Poltergeist Pat II, playing Carol Anne's grandmother who was also clairvoyant.

Fitzgerald was married to Sir Edward Lindsay-Hogg while Orson Welles was married to his first wife, Virginia Nicholson. They had a brief affair and whether or not their perspective spouses knew is unknown. They did however move their families nearby one another and the product of their affair, a son named Michael Lindsay-Hogg grew along side Christopher Welles Feder (female).

If that sounds strange to you, well it is. Michael was never told that Welles was his father but his half sister claimed to always feel that he could be her brother. Eventually he did take a DNA test and it was confirmed that Welles was indeed his father. His mother, Fitzgerald never admitted this to him-she has since passed on. Michael is a British film and theater director and his sister Chris wrote an autobiography called, In My Father's Shadow.

Loretta Young + Clark Gable = Judy Lewis
Love Child Judy Lewis
As surprising as it was to learn that Orson Welles had a love child and his only son (he had two daughters with two different wives), I believe this story to be the most shocking and in tramuatizing.

Imagine being a child of a Hollywood starlet and everyone around you whispering and saying, "Doesn't she look so much like Clark Gable?" Little Judy Lewis grew up thinking she was adopted by Loretta Young when she was a year old. When she was fifteen years old, Gable came over to her mother's house. It was the first time she met her father and the only time Gable ever knew one of his children while he was still alive (his son, John Clark Gable was born four months after Gable passed on).

The story goes that Judy found out who her father was on her wedding day. She was the only one that didn't know. At the age of 31, Lewis confronted her mother who confirmed the truth. Young wrote an autobiography called "Uncommon Knowledge". In 2000, it was finally published after Young's passing and also finally confirming the truth, that Lewis was indeed Gable's child. Lewis passed on in 2011 leaving behind a daughter, Maria and two grandsons.

June Nicholson + Eddie King? = Jack Nicholson
Jack Nicholson was born in April 1937 to a young showgirl named June Frances Nicholson. She married a showman named Donald Furcillo although he was already married. June's mother insisted on raising the child, Jack, so that June could focus on her dancing career.

Sounds all sort of sweet and the thing most any grandparent would do for their grandchild...right? Well how about this for shocking. Jack Nicholson was raised thinking his grandparents were his parents and his mother was his sister! Say that ten times fast!

And  how about Nicholson not finding out about this outstanding truth until 1974, when he was 36 years old! By the time he found out both his birth mother and grandmother has passed on. He does not know who his biological father is, Furcillo was a candidate but so was June's manager, Eddie King. Only June and her mother knew the truth and Nicholson has since chosen not to find out. Gee, talk about needing some therapy! Makes my head dizzy just thinking about how much energy it took to keep all these secrets!

Enrica Soma + John Julius Norwich = Allegra Huston
Love Child Allegra Huston
This story has a tragic beginning but a truly enchanted ending. The famous film director John Huston was married to his fourth wife Enrica Sonoma from 1950 to 1969. Sometime in the early 1960's both husband and wife became estranged. In 1964, Allegra was born out of an affair her mother had with John Julius Norwich (Viscount of Norwich).

When Enrica passed on tragically in 1969 in a car accident, John Huston immediately picked up the pieces and raised Allegra as his own child. I don't know many people who would raise another man's child, but he did.

Allegra Huston wrote about her two fathers and about her two sets of siblings as well as being both American and English in a wonderful autobiography called, Love Child: A Memoir of Family Lost and Found. Today, Allegra is a successful writer and has a family of her own. She looks back at everything she was put through with grace and wisdom. Defiantly worth reading!

What do you think about these love children? Can you imagine keeping up with such secrets for so many years?


Saturday, February 9, 2013

My Vintage Home: My Children's Rooms

I made a decision a few months ago that even if it takes a few years, I have to have my home repainted and redecorated-even just a little. I also decided to add a dash of vintage into my everyday life in my home as well. I have some things around the house already like signs and knick knacks but honestly once babies become toddlers you just cannot have too much delicate stuff lying around.

I thought since my goal is to work on the kids rooms between April and June of this year that perhaps you could all join in me in this exciting process and even if possible help me along? I mean, what are vintage sisters, right?

My two eldest sleep in the same room at the moment. That room was my former craft room so it still has the shabby chic look that I decorated it as back in 2006. The nursery is painted in sage green and it was that color for all three babies nursery themes. The photos below were taken in 2011 prior to my eldest son moving into his sisters room, he was still in the nursery (was a Winnie the Pooh theme and is now a Monkey theme), and the baby was in the bassinet in our bedroom.
I was thinking of just having the kids toddler beds lined in a row against the wall (away from the windows I prefer) and having only their dressers and armories in the room-no toys at all. My only concern is that there are two white pieces and two brown pieces. Do I put all four in the room? Do I only leave two?

The nursery aka future playroom is a really small space as you can see from above. There is a closest there that I cover with a curtain and one window. Making this space fun to play in and functional is going to be a challenge for sure.

The photo below is of a 1950's child's playroom. I would love to put a chalkboard in the room and not paint the wall with black chalk paint because it will just damage the wall in the long run.
Two color combinations I have liked so far are red and blue (dash of yellow?) and light aqua and orange. I am thinking of maybe a 1950's themed playroom only because the colors are so vibrant and fun and I want my babies to be comfortable in their special room.
I also this great article on how to create a 1950's playroom. Sweet isn't??! I have NO clue how to decorate the kids sleeping quarters. They all love different things. I need to figure out something generic but nice and defiantly no decals. My lil monkey boy would tear that up in two seconds hehe

So what do you think? This will be one of my new series that I will include on my blog along with "My Vintage Wardrobe", "Weekend Cinema Spotlight", and "Classic Film Actor Spotlight".

If you have any suggestions, tips, or any help at all--you can email them to me at bunnysvictory@yahoo.com or share them with me on my Facebook page. I have some time to work on this project but I know my baby will need to be in his toddler bed no later than the summer.

Boy, this is going to be fun!!!!


Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Bunny is in Folie Vintage Magazine! OMG!

What a lovely surprise it was for me when I woke up yesterday, got online, and found out that my interview with Folie Vintage had been published! This was all possible because of the  beautiful Nella from Nella Fragola blog and her belief in me. The interview is in French and I think I sound fabulous! I hope you will think so as well! 

In case you cannot read the article in French, Google allows you to translate it to other languages. I hope you can understand the point I was making and what I was sharing in whatever language you choose to read it in. And I hope you do choose to read it! It would mean a lot to me!

A BIG thank you to both Nella and Folie Vintage for believing in me and what I do. This is something that I will always cherish and never forget.

Here is the link to my article. What do you think? Merci mes amis!


Monday, February 4, 2013

Bunny's Valentine's Giveaway!

I wanted to giveaway something extra special for Valentine's day! I discovered this incredible site called America in WWII. It has some amazing information and the magazines they have are the kind that every American should have in their possession. I say this from a vintage and  history standpoint. They have a wonderful way of telling the stories of that time without sounding like a boring textbook.

I cannot say enough about this site and about their magazines, which I hope to get my hands on some more because they have back issues!!!

This giveaway will only because for those who reside in the  U.S. I hope to have some more in the near future that would be open for everyone.

The winner will receive a copy of Home Front Life, which is a 100 page guided tour of 1940's wartime in America. As you see from the photo above, I have one and it really is an amazing issue! I will share what is inside in special review sometime soon.

To enter make sure you are a follower of my blog, leave me a comment saying why the 1940's or WWII intrigues you. Also, follow one of my social network sites; Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, or Tumblr. All the links are on the top right hand corner or my blog page!

Good luck to all and the winner will be announced on February 15th, so spread the word and good luck!


Sunday, February 3, 2013

Weekend Cinema Spotlight: A Patch of Blue

A Patch of Blue
"A Patch of Blue" (1965)

Selina D'Arcey (Elizabeth Hartman) is an eighteen year old blind girl who lives with her prostitute mother (Shelley Winters) and alcoholic grandfather (Wallace Ford). Selina has never had an education or friends or any life at all other than tending to her mother and Ol' Pa. One day at a nearby park, Selina works on her beading and a caterpillar falls on her. Upon hearing her scream,  the dashing Gordon Ralfe (Sidney Poitier) comes to her rescue.
A deep friendship based on mutual trust and compassion builds between Selina and Gordon. As time progresses Selina falls in love with Gordon. When Gordon receives a kiss from her he pulls himself away, feeling torn by his feelings of caring for her.
Gordon tells Selina of a blind school that she could go to but her mother has other plans for her especially after find them talking together. Rose-Ann (Winters) tells her that they will be moving and leaving Ol' Pa behind. After she tells Gordon about her mother's plan, he informs her that the school will come and get her in a few days. Of course Selina would much rather stay with Gordon (that is a no brainer...Sidney or school...humm?? hehe)
Rose-Ann's selfish plan to put her daughter to work as a prostitute fails when she attempts to take Selina away but Ol' Pa refuses to help. Although dysfunctional in his own way, he had a love for Selina and wanted her to have a better life.
Later on Selina proposes to Gordon (gotta love this moment) and he tells her that there are many different kinds of love. She informs him that she knows he is a black man and it doesn't matter to her. While they both wait for the school to come pick her up, he tells her that they shall wait a year to see if their love would lead to marriage (oh sigh!). Selina leaves without the music box he was gifting to her but he tosses it into the air and smile brightly. His smile saying, "I will be seeing her soon!".

This film is truly well told as it was based on the novel written by Elizabeth Kata called, Be Ready with Bells and Drums (1961). Winters won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her work in this film. Below are some behind the scenes shots that I thought were so neat!

Have you seen this film? What did you think of the performances? Do you feel as though there may be a happy ending in the horizon for both the lead characters?


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