Friday, December 7, 2012

Seeing the Seasonal Art

My lovely Green Man

In order to understand my thought process you'll probably need to read this blog.
It's been a long time since I've been able to *see* religious art.
But now that I have, I'm on a roll.

Having just completed coordinating FESTIVAL of the SEASON, where one of my displays was a live barnyard scene featuring a storyteller gifting us with THE NIGHT THE ANIMALS TALKED, I stumbled upon this creche made in Italy just sitting in the thrift store, for $4.99.

It had to make the trip home with me.
(Because, as we all know, I need just *one* more piece of thrift!)  

Nativity scenes abound in the shops this time of year but this one was particularly lovely.
I wouldn't say no to a barn like this!
(Though I could do without the three wise men and the camel........)

At any rate, this will be the first time in my adult life that I will display the Nativity in my home as I celebrate my beloved pagan Yule.  I see Baby Jesus as the Sun King and the animals, well, we know they played a very important part.  They always do.

All the characters were in a bag, but when I got home I found this......
a wee hidden oxen.  Amazing that he made the trip from donation to my home, hidden in his little cubby!

The stable is marked MADE IN ITALY on the bottom as are the characters, with the added date of 1983.
It all is so amazingly detailed.

There was no goat.....  :(
but I like to think that this would be my Darla.....
I also like to think that on that night, a goat was there.

It's all quite beautiful and I do look forward to enjoying it this holiday season.

'Tis the Season......See the Art!

Blessed Yule, my friends.
I honor and celebrate with you in the belief of your choice.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Dark Madonna

Found this lovely treasure, a darker toned Madonna, in the thrift shop.
It's really quite lovely.
I love discovering art.........

Friday, October 5, 2012


It's always a good day when one finds the
Ohmygod! score!

Vintage Gypsy Doll

Isn't she beautiful?

I love her and promise to give her a very good home!

Thursday, September 27, 2012


So, here is the very first piece in my search for the Black Madonna.

$1.99 at the thrift store.

Of course, it isn't the Black Madonna, and I have a feeling it will be a long search.
That sort of treasure doesn't just sit around the thrift store waiting to be found.
But, I think she's quite beautiful and I shall proudly display her.
(I know I could go online and all but my rule is I must stumble upon it. )  ;)

It has taken me a lifetime to make myself notice religious artifacts of this nature.
It feels good to finally open my mind..... and See the Art..........

It feels really good.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Monday, September 3, 2012

The Black Madonna

In Southern Proven├žal tradition, the Black Madonna is associated with St. Sara, the patron saint of the Gypsies. She was said to be the black assistant who accompanied the three Marys to France when they fled from the Holy Land after the Crucifixion. In local gypsy tradition, she is said to have been a gypsy (some say 'Egyptian') woman who helped them to land safely. A cult of St. Sara persists today at Les Saintes Maries de la Mer, one of the earliest Magdalene sites in France.

I've become quite taken recently with the Black Madonna, since having read the most excellent
by Alexander Ramati.

In sooth, I am quite pagan in spirit, thought, word and deed and, if truth be know, shy away from
things such as the Madonna, having spent horrific years in Catholic school as a child and subsequently growing up in a world where time and again so called religious persons displayed behaviors toward myself and others that curdled my inner being.

It isn't as though I don't *like* Jesus.
I like him well.
But from my first memory in kindergarten of being slapped until I pee'd my pants because I couldn't tell a story about a picture of the Baby Jesus-my wee mind went so blank I can still recall the absolute terror to this day-(though funny how I grew up to be a storyteller.....go figure...) to adult encounters with those who would wish to *convert* me at all costs-I just run at the mention of God and the Heavens.

With that said, (and those are *my* trials and tribulations to overcome)
as I grow older I find that I am realizing I, without fail, for years have automatically closed my mind to anything even remotely religious in nature.  Mention religion and I stop listening.

Now really, Mimi, how fair is that?

And now, Ramati's most wonderful book brought to light for me a people who struggled through persecution, never losing the firm grasp on their culture or their beliefs.  I was in awe of their fortitude.


Perhaps it's time I opened my mind and did a wee bit of exploring.
A closed mind is a terrible matter the direction.

Right, Mimi?

And perhaps one day, I'll tell that story about the Baby Jesus..........

I look forward to exploring this history.
Thanks for sharing with me.


Sunday, August 5, 2012


A Short Fairytale
by Mimi Foxmorton  2012

Oh, she knew a wolf when she saw one.
And when Grandma closed her Great Big Eyes
and went the way of the lit Forest Path,
Little Fox found, hoarded, the untidy heaps of
unopened jams she had so mindfully carried
through the woods all those years.

~The End~

by Fox '13
"You grin and show me
the empty path you cut
through the dense woods.
From either side
green leaves beckon
offering false safety.
My old red cape drags behind me 
as I journey to the end
wondering when the wolf will appear.


Linked to the lovely
Imaginary Garden with Real Toads
creative writing site.
Open Link Monday
Please check them out!
You'll be glad you did!

Saturday, August 4, 2012

The Child Has No Property

Well, when all is said and done-all is said and done.

And very little, at that.

Today arrived the pack of papers I have been-avoiding-dreading-guilty about-longing for
for the past 50 plus years.

The adoption papers.

With the house clean out in progress and Mum as barmy as the Mad Hatter most days it seemed time to put my anxiety aside and delve into the truth of the matter.

There was a decent stack, all typed (on a bad typewriter-government, eh?) on onion skin paper with a variety of seals, strings, rusted paper clips and stamps.....the kind of stamps you lick....and waiting for me to know the facts.

What I came away with was hardly reason to be so apprehensive lo' these many years.

Written in German, but with translation papers throughout, they mostly said:
Blah-blah-bladhy-blah First Party-blahdy-bloo-Second Party.....
date-date-date.......sign here.......german-german-german........
and so forth.

No givesey-backseys.
(Let the Buyer Beware!)  ;)

But here's the crux:

I am illegitimate.
(Such a word.  Happy Faerie Mash-up would have been more suitable, don't you think?)

My original name has been changed.  Not just my last name.
(Considering Foxmorton is yet another name change...and then there's Violet and Hatty and BeBe....and...well......
clearly I started the name change game early.  A rose by any other name, eh?)

The child owns no property.
(Clearly they failed to take into account those several acres of gnome woodlands. 
 I hold the deed, it's just invisible is all.  And the pirate booty goes without saying.)

I now know my birth mother's full name.
(Which is kind of scary as she doesn't know mine.  Almost like an invasion of privacy if I were to bandy it about.....which I won't. Remember, this was never about finding my parents.  Simply a burning desire to know my ancestry.  Germany.....castles.....explains much about me.
Which brings us to Nature vs. Nurture...but we can save that for another time.)

Her first name is beautiful...I think.  I'm not sure how to pronounce it.
(None of my real names were hers.  My stomach did the biggest flip upon seeing her name in 
print for the first time.)

I have no father. 
(Nor was there any mention or place on the papers to fill in a father.  But, we all know that
River Pirates consorting with faeries generally don't leave a name.....)

I know my birth mothers partial address at the time of my birth-though no mention of her birth date.
(I would have liked to know how old she was.  Do I have siblings?  I really want to know if I have siblings.)

I know her occupation at the time of her birth.
(Maid.  Which makes for a good Cinderella story I suppose.)

I have no mental defects.
(Bwah-hahahahahah!  We Germans are a funny lot!  Slipped that one right by them, eh?)

And that is all I know.

All this time I believed these papers to hold the 
Secret to Foxmorton's Universe.

And they didn't.

And that's ok.

I grew up only knowing that both my parents were German.  My father went to great lengths to be sure some discharged officer from Boise wasn't going to knock on the door when I was 7 and create a ruckus.
(Apparently he figured it would be an inconvenient weekend trip all the way from Germany.)

And now?  Well, now I know a little more.

I'll need to think on this awhile.
This feeling of finally turning a page in my story.
And then I'll let you know what I though.
If anything.

My sincere thanks for sharing this moment with me.


Treasures from the Past

Fox and Poodle in oils.  artist unknown  1958  

The Past, it seems, was quite over by the time I came along.  My brothers were 17 and 22 and the days of the Old Stuff were lagging behind. (Which were so much better than anything new that could be produced today!)  As I continue to clean out my Mum's house (she's still with us, by the way, 101 and going strong!) I stumble upon various ancient pieces that Speak to me.  I have taken so very little, in the grand scheme of things, less than two boxes, really. 
 But the things I have taken are such treasures to me.

I do though admit, here and out loud (as there is no one left to hurt by such an admission)
I dearly wish that I had just one old piece that used to belong to my birth mother.
Wouldn't that be a grand thing to own?

  I share some of yesterday's (sometimes painful) finds.

With my recent Passion For France, I was delighted to find several things from my Father's visit in 1944.  (see past posts) (seriously-a real rose from France 1944!)   This bracelet is so full of beauty and energy!  I imagine it was generally sold to tourists and were a dime a dozen...then.  I can't imagine finding its equal today.
The detail is perfection!

I don't see myself wearing it.  It has held up well...but still. 
 Sort of the thing one can imagine losing. 
I've decided to frame it against some lace and display it.  
It really was a Blessing to find. 

(L to R)
Tour Eiffel
Notre Dame
Arc de Triomphe
Ile de France

Always a favorite of mine.......the vintage table cloths!
They don't make 'em like this any more!

This is great!  A still wrapped, three pack of Ivory soap!
Appears to be a special vintage design for a contest occasion.
(12/31/2002 is on the back with a web site-so this isn't really old....just cool)
The front says to *find the sinking bar and win $100,000!
(as you'll remember...Ivory was known as the soap that floats!)
Now......wouldn't it be really sad if the sinking bar was in this pack....?????
Mum never bothered to find out.  lol
As for me, I don't have the heart to open it and be disappointed!
My great great grandchildren will probably be excited when they find this.

My Mum, looking very young.  I sooooo covet that dress on the right!
Too bad that one wasn't still in her closet!  ;)

For those of you who follow my blogs, you will know that my Uncle Whitey
was (and still is!) my heart and soul!
I can still, after 26 years, cry like a baby at the mention of his name.
(and why, yes...yes I am.....right now, even)  :)

He was the purest soul that ever graced the Universe.
In my eyes he was Angel, Pirate and Giant.
I will never stop missing him.

Here then, is his volunteer fireman's hat.
I used to wear it and pretend I was a policeman.
Uncle Whitey would laugh and laugh.
(and why, yes....yes I am......wearing it right now, even)  :)

Whenever I think of the odds of never having come to know him-I could have been adopted by anyone-I always give thanks that he was there as my one Constant.....and I lucked out.

Pretty Things

Bit and pieces.  I do so love a cameo, and oddly, given my Mum's age, she hadn't all that many.

What really fascinates me are the powder compacts.
I have a few already, Mum would dole them out like she did the lace. (see past blogs)
It seems that one MUST have a refillable compact for one's Coty Air-spun Loose Powder!  lol
These are quite unique.

Top:  Engraved *Officer's Club 1940*

Bottom:  SUNY Oswego 1946
(Note- SUNY Oswego was formerly the Normal School (yeah, I never asked why the name)
which went on to be the State College.  
All within walking distance of The Homestead and right on Lake Ontario.)
My grandfather hauled rocks from the lake shore by horse and wagon to build Sheldon Hall.
The State eventually bought them out in order to expand the college.
I was 4 when we moved from that site.  No indoor bathroom.
Try potty training in a real live outhouse!  ;)
(Kidding.....I remember a potty chair.)
How sad that we didn't have one of those fancy chamber pots to pass down.
I kind of remember an enamel bucket.
Uncle Whitey always used the outhouse.
I, on the other hand, was scared (shite-less?) with stories of
Small Children Who Could Fall In A Hole of Poo.

And my final find of the day!
Those little plastic records and my Mister Ed comic book!
Remember when Mister Ed wanted Wilbur to buy him a swimmin' pool?

And there you have it.
We are nearing an end to it all.
So many mixed feelings.
So many lovely memories.

Thanks for sharing this time with me.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Une fleur de l'amour d'un jardin en France

A few more treasures from yesterday's journey to the past.......

At left, a photograph of my mother's family at a wedding.
To right, and unknown photograph found buried at the bottom of a 
candy box full of lace hankies.
At center, some amazingly beautiful vintage trinket...and my favorite of all, a cameo.
(I am quite enamored of cameos!)

The ecru lace you see behind is sewn to a scarf of black tulle.
The label remarks:  made in France

I had thought to stumble upon a stack of love letters but so far I haven't.
Only this one, preserved with a rose.  Dated 1944
My father says that it was "given to me by a French woman who picked it in her garden"
He also says that he "kissed this flower before sending it"

At this time, my parents were married.

Ahhh...the lost art of the romantic letter......
EBB would be so proud........

Une fleur de l'amour d'un jardin en France.


I'm Not Crazy...My Mother Had Me Tested......

Since yesterday was such a wretched day of trying to sort out my Mother's long life, with her still in it, 
it made me laugh long and hard when I stumbled upon this certificate!

For those of you who are fans of the sitcom BIG BANG THEORY
(and I am a HUGE fan!  brilliant, by the way!)
you'll REALLY appreciate the joke!

So, for those of you who might have suspected......

"I'm not crazy.    My Mother had me tested."

See?  It says so right here!  :)

(Though, little did they know, they had a Bedlamite in the making!)

Find something to laugh out loud about today!
It's good for the Soul!

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Pilfered Lace

The enormity of what I have just done has hit me like a wrecking ball into an unsuspecting wall of brick.

I have pilfered my Mum's hand crocheted lace.

Well, not even her lace, but my grandmother's lace.
And since my Mum will be 101 on this June 5th well, then that's some pretty old lace.

I have coveted this box of lace for ages.  Ever since my Mum started handing it out to me, piece by piece, like special candy treats.  She's been doing it forever.  Since the time I first moved to my own apartment.
Every now and again.....she'd gift me with a piece of  crochet lace from the box.
Endless excitement on a day like that when I possessed another piece to display!
(I was, perhaps, the only 20 year old with furniture sporting antimacassars!
  You gotta admire a good antimacassar!)

The ritual brought to me a love of dear, old things, painstakingly crafted by a woman I never met.
Grandma passed before I was born.
But, still, I have always had a picture in my mind of that faceless lady bent over her work of an evening.

And then one day, Mum stopped.  Stopped gifting the lace.
She said to me one day:  "Now you have to wait until I'm gone."

And of course, I promised.

And now, now I have broken my promise and pilfered that lace.

I hadn't meant to.  But, one thing leading to another and Mum, nearing 101, just isn't able to stay in her home any longer.   Nor my daughter's either.  And the goddess knows my poor daughter gave it her all.
But, it wasn't meant to be.

 Another promise not kept.

I wish I could bring her these lovely pieces and pretty up her room.
But, Mum's not the woman now to appreciate the lovely and would be all the sadder (and madder)
 that I had touched her things.  The upset would never be equal to the beauty.
She would find, now, no comfort in this lace.

I laugh out loud when I think of a character on a  favorite television show, Sheldon Cooper of Big Bang Theory-  "A home?  We'd never put Meemaw in a home!"

You say that.

  But circumstance is a harsh mistress and Mum now
 resides in a care facility and her home to be scattered to the four winds in hopes that her long loved belongings will be honored by the people who take them.

That's one promise I can keep.

~MF 2012

Monday, May 14, 2012

The French "Appel" Pie Adventure

My her 80's......
Gee....I wonder where I get my love of garb?   ;)
Nature vs. Nurture.  Hmm.

Ah, 'twas a bittersweet weekend this past.

My Mum, who will be 101 this coming June 5, had to recently move to a care facility.
We'll call it that.  It pains me to write the NH word.

The Goddess knows, we tried, against all odds to keep her with the family, but some things just aren't meant to be and one comes to realize that facility care offers a host of things that no human on earth can provide in a home setting.  Kudos to my daughter for holding out until the bitter end and medical care made it necessary to move her.  There is no way in the world I would have lasted a day.

So, with that said, there comes a host of other, even more daunting tasks.  The tasks of cleaning out her home.

There's naught for it and it must be done.  No other way around it.
But, if she were passed then I might feel differently.  It's a bloody knife in my heart as I go about the tasks that I promised her I would never do until after she was gone.

Crappy daughter, I.

There are many (many!) days ahead of sorting and deciding but I made a bit of a start this weekend.
I thought that I'd share a few of the more treasured things I found and remembered fondly.

I have no idea what the pin on the left actually is but I do know that I shall wear it proudly upon my pirate hat!  The wee knife to the right is also on the piratey side!

I can sew the wee knife to my pirate garb and always be ready for a sandwich!  ;)

Going out on a limb, due to the look and age, but will say that this was my grandfather's pipe!
Remember......Mum is 100............   

I love these!  I played with them sooooo many times when I was small.
Who knew.......Mum was the original Steampunk Girl!   ;)

I adore cameos in any and all forms!  
And the wee mag glass will go nicely with my Vic garb!

Ok.  THIS is wild!  Clearly my Mum was corresponding to someone in Paris!
This begins in English and is a recipe for "French Appel Pie" 
The next two pages are meticulous instructions in flawless handwriting-in French-
for the pie!  It closes with sending more the "next time I write."
I'm actually rather excited to see if I find any more from this person!
A "French Appel Pie" Adventure!

Vintage beaded purse.  I was real good up until I opened it and smelled the inside.
It smelled the way my Mum smelled when I was little............

The Dog is mine....but the derby was my grandfathers!
It's sooooo old!  Fragile.  And I adore it!
The sales tag inside is handwritten and reads:  3052 Blk $2.00 51/4
The sewn in leather tag reads:  Bains, Oswego NY

There's so much more to do.
Torn betwixt wanting to honor everything and knowing that decisions will have to be made.

And....facing the 'lock box' wherein all my adoption information lies............
which is what, essentially, this blog is all about.........

But, I shall smile, because to do otherwise would be a failure to celebrate my Mums
long and wonderful life.........

Thank you so much for coming on this journey with me......
it's appreciated knowing that you are all out there to urge me forward....share a smile.....or break my fall.......
or perhaps peel a few *appels* with me along the way..........

Let the French *Appel* Pie Adventure start!
(with a humble nod to Maurice Sendak...who loved an adventure!)

(Right after this nap..........)    ;)

addendum:  My bloggie friend, Jinksy, just sent me a link to the bird's foot broach!
Thanks, Jinksy!
Bird's Foot Broach