Antiquing ~ Second Impression Palace, Mitchell, SD

What makes the heart
go pitter~patter?
That excited feeling one gets 
when you KNOW
 there could be
Something out there really special just
waiting for you
to find it…

Second Impressions Palace Antique Mall

(605) 996-1948

You know that feeling when it hits you full force
at least it does me!

Last week as we were driving across the
prairies in South Dakota
we kept seeing road signs for
an antique mall in Mitchell.
We decided to stop and check it out!

I found lots of older camera equipment at 
Second Impressions
perfect for that person 
who is a collector of such goodies.
My son began collecting a few pieces
especially older lenses 
as they can often be adapted 
to work with today’s digital cameras.
Two summers ago, we found a 1970’s~era 
camera body, several lenses for that model and
a flash at an estate sale.
My son was very excited that weekday
when I came home and woke him up 
to go back with me to take a look.  
This is always a score in our book!

I love this darling little pillow!
Wouldn’t it be cute 
with other vintage pillows
in delicious shabby shades
sea foam green, soft pinks and sky blues?

Of course there were lots of vintage and 
antique books to peruse ~ I found a number of vintage 
Hardy Boys Mysteries
as well as this 
Harper’s Third Reader.
The stories within are good still and its fun to read
these hundred~year~old school books
to see what life was like back then!
Vintage books are also wonderful to decorate with ~ 
stack them to raise items creating height or
balance in a tablescape ~ 
anything which needs a little boost 
when you are decorating a shelf or mantel.
True antiques these former gas chandeliers
now electrified would look wonderful hanging in a 
period or transitional home.
Surprisingly not much china was available
as I overheard the shopkeeper tell someone that
tea sets weren’t selling well…
A shame really as I found this tea set to be quite charming!
Shopping this time for me had to be easily
packable and small since we were full in the car
so the crystal chandelier pieces
a packet of silver-plate knives
and these two door escutcheons are all the antiques
that came back with me from this trip.

Finally, the last and the pièce de resistance
a mantel unlike any I have seen anywhere ~
If I could have forked over the $895 price
I would have in a heartbeat…
This is actually three separate pieces: the mantel piece,
the greenish patinaed metal insert
and a metal medallion of a woman down below.
All lovely and beyond my budget… sigh!
So now you know what makes my heart skip a beat
and makes me swoon.
Anything here make you swoon, too?
Happy antiquing,
p.s. ~ As always, feel free to “share” and “like” my little ramblings.  I’m looking at adding 
Mail Chimp to make it easier to send you mail updates of when blogposts publish.  
I do appreciate your comments even though the goofy Google+ thingy says comments are 
“from me”…  Still trying to find that and fix it.  Let me know if you happen to have had the same issue… Thank you!!!
*Will be sharing with ~
Feathered Nest Friday ~ French Country Cottage



Places to Visit ~ Carlsbad Caverns National Park

My daughter enjoying all of the fantastic speleothems called stalagmites {taken with my cell phone}.
Want a great place to take the whole family
on an upcoming vacation?
A place all dark, cool, and maybe a tiny bit scary inside?

A stalagmite looking like some kind of stacked ice cream cone.
Visit Carlsbad Caverns
up in the Guadalupe Mountains of
New Mexico
where mystery still surrounds the area as stories
of lost gold and Cibola still abound…

Inside the Big Cavern
With no entrance fee into the park 
itself until actually signing up for a *guided tour 
or walking the caverns’ pathway by oneself 
(Entrance fee is $10 age 16 and older, 15 and under are free),
park visitors can wander the outdoor pathways
exploring native vegetation
listening to park rangers talk about the magic of 
the miners~of~old and stories of hidden gold.

*up to $20 for an adult, depending upon the cave tour taken ~ this fee
is in addition to the entrance fee.

Inside the visitors center
 kiosk placards display how the caverns were formed, 
 famous photos by well-known photographers are on-view,
and park rangers are stationed about sharing the caverns history.

Ample parking is available outside the entrance 
for cars as well as RVs, 
pull up your campers along both sides of a long, curving island
with a wide pathway meant for people to get out and stretch,
set up their picnic supplies, table and chairs.
{no overnight parking allowed; however, come and stay for the day!} 

So come and take in the
Surrounding beauty that is the caverns…
Whether above surface or below people of all ages will enjoy the 
wonders of the caves and their formations.
Stay until evening time and watch the nightly bat show 
as several species of bats fly out to feast on insects and fruit 
as the sky’s golden glow fades with the setting sun.

I’ll be sharing more cavern photos
with you over
the next couple of weeks as well as
 I visited this week in Texas…
{still writing up that post!}
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and please stay tuned for more
of our Travels Across America!
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Enjoy your summer,


Sharing with ~
Feathered Nest Friday ~ French Country Cottage



The Wilds of South Dakota

Lake Thompson Recreation Area ~ part of the South Dakota State Park system.  Laura Ingalls Wilder wrote about
Lakes Henry and Thompson when they were two lakes back in the late 19th century.  

South Dakota is one of the prettiest states
in the union.

With its wide open prairies stretching out for miles in every direction; buttes rising up out of the Missouri, the Sioux
and other rivers, and even with bigger cities dotting the countryside, there is always a sense of
“the prairie…”

All along the highways of Nebraska and South Dakota, cities and towns have markers and often memorials
to entice travelers and locals to stop by and visit.  We stopped at several memorials welcoming us into towns.

With its haunting beauty, the prairie whispers in its daily winds for one to come take a walk,
go for a bike ride,

or just explore and travel back in
this land’s time machine to the state’s earlier, wild days
as a expansion territory…

Crossing the Missouri River

In 1803, Jefferson commissioned the Corps of Discovery, and named U.S. Army Captain Meriwether Lewis its leader, who in turn selected William Clark as second in command. ~  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lewis_and_Clark_Expedition 

Lewis and Clark along with their team of men, began surveying South Dakota territory in the summer of 1804
reaching Sioux City, Iowa, in August.
One of their party, Sgt. Charles Floyd, Jr. became ill with what was probably peritonitis due to an inflamed and ruptured appendix and died there along the banks of the Big Sioux River,
a tributary of the Missouri River.

Mr. Clark wrote of Sgt. Floyd:

 . . Serj. Floyd died with a great deal of composure. Before his death he said to me, “I am going away. I want you to write me a letter.” We buried him on the top of the bluff ½ mile below a small river to which we gave his name. He was buried with the Honors of War much lamented. A seeder {cedar} post with the (I) Name Sergt. C. Floyd died here 20th of August 1804 was fixed at his grave. This man at alltimes gave us proofs of his firmness and determined resolution to doe service to his countrey and honor to himself . . . 

I wrote about North Sioux City in a post last month
describing how within a 10 minute drive you can be in three different states ~ Nebraska, Iowa and South Dakota.
One of our countries tri-state areas!

There are several memorials in the area and the 
Sgt. Floyd Monument a commanding obelisk 100′ tall,
is there on the north bluff overlooking the Big Sioux River, 
a tributary of the Missouri River. 
The monument and surrounding park of 25 acres is lovely and
quite peaceful, a fitting last resting place for Sgt. Floyd.

***Click on the monument name above to visit the
National Park website to learn more about
Sgt. Floyd and the Lewis and Clark Corps of Discovery.

Driving along the prairies along Interstate 90

Thunderheads piling up in the East ~ signs of a rainstorm but luckily Not a tornado! 

Four men in the mist ~ Presidents Washington, Jefferson, Roosevelt and Lincoln

Amazing views from anywhere within Mt. Rushmore park!

Another view of Lake Thompson, South Dakota
One of the placards on the walking tour at Mt. Rushmore National Park

This summer our whole family including grandparents

will converge in South Dakota for the wedding of
our son to his bride~to~be.
I’ll be once again shooting photos of the South Dakota towns
and prairies but if you have any requests for places to visit, 
email me at french.ethereal@gmail.com as we will be traveling through 14 states taking our daughter and her goods to her new home in Texas then traveling onward up through Oklahoma,
Kansas, Nebraska, Iowa and into South Dakota
{not necessarily in that order}.

As always, I’d love it if you’d “Like” my blog and “Sign up” 
along the side bar to receive future blog postings!

Sharing with ~
Feathered Nest Friday ~ French Country Cottage

Happy summer travels,


Places to Visit… Evelyn Hallman Park, Tempe, Arizona

Ethereal daisy-like flowers on a wild lamb’s ear-type plant
Springtime in Arizona
is really pretty!

I am no good at growing desert plants, but 
love the wildflowers
one finds out in America’s beloved deserts!!!
Amazing earth-colors!

My husband and I drove out to Tempe, Arizona

for the weekend
to see our son and his track team

When the meet was all over, and before we drove home
on Sunday,
Hubby and I drove around trying to find a
living desert garden
I had found two years ago.

We didn’t exactly find the one I knew was close by, 
but we did find the
Evelyn Hallman Park!

Just over the Salt River there in Tempe,
this little oasis
is an ethereal little fishing place!
Quite a few young men and some older men with their children or families
were taking advantage of the fishing.
It was around 10:30am
and the day was beginning to get hot,
so the fishing was probably done for the morning, 
but these folks were happy just casting away…

We saw another sign that said each adult 

could catch
 two of each type of fish ~ trout and catfish, I believe
(except perch, of which one could catch five!)
each day.
My son would be in fishing heaven!!!

Students, retirees, and families 
were out 
running, hiking and bicycling 
around the lake
and onto trails 
which wind beyond the lake 
and onto lands owned by the 
local water treatment plant/company.

We spent an hour or so walking here and there

with me photographing
wildlife, the scenery and fauna in spring bloom!
Hubby even took a few photos of me.

Hope you’ve enjoyed this little

Tempe, Phoenix, Chandler and Scottsdale
are all right next to each other
and are lovely places to visit in late fall, winter and spring.

Blessings to you,


Tea Rooms to Visit ~ Barbara’s in Ontario

Barbara’s Victorian Tea House, 7491 Etiwanda Avenue, Ranch Cucamonga, CA 91739.  Hours are Wednesday – Sunday, 11am – 3pm.  Please call 24 hours ahead for reservations ~ (909) 899-1700.  Off HW 15 at Foothill Blvd to the right, away from Victoria Station shopping center/Bass Pro Shop.

This month I have two teas to tell you about
and the first is…

Barbara’s Victorian Tea Room

and Boutique in Ontario, California!

A lovely home built around the turn of the last century now a sweet tea room adorned with lots
of lace, ribbons and bows and pots of tea!

What must be a  hundred year old tree out front of Barbara’s Tea House in Ontario/Ranch Cucamonga, California.   

My friend, Gloria, and I went up to have tea in early February. No one else from our tea group could go
as some of the ladies were ill, but we decided to go anyway and we were glad we did!

Gloria and I had the same tea luncheon, the “Princess Patricia’s tea” which included three delicious tea sandwiches; one large scone with mock Devonshire cream, cherry preserves, and lemon curd; fresh fruit and a homemade cream of broccoli soup that day.  The menu also included a teapot-for-one! (I always love having those cute individual teapots!)

{Sorry these photos are blurry! I took them with my old iPhone!}

When we arrived for our 11:00am sitting, there was only one other party so it was quite quiet and pleasant. Lovely music played in the background
as we began with our scones and first cups of tea…

Next came a lovely, clear-glass compote of fruit

after the scones and before the tea sandwiches…

A two-tiered server was brought out lastly with our sandwiches arranged sweetly around the lower floral plate, while the desserts consisting of a chocolate-dipped-then-drizzled strawberry (it was huge!),
a couple of chocolate truffles and little cakes of lemon curd nestled around the top flowered plate.


My sweet friend Gloria!

The service was lovely, the food delicious
and the home delightful!

And, I love Barbara’s motto from her menu guide:
for those who cannot get to tea but would love
to have one:

“Do you know someone who loves afternoon tea and is unable to come to our tea house? Consider  “Afternoon Tea To Go.” It can be a very special treat for a loved one or special friend who is homebound.  Please call 909.899.1700 to place your order.Thank you.”

I thought this was especially lovely, as not everyone thinks of people who can’t get out and about or who may be ill…

A lovely, ethereal sentiment…

Your illustrious blog hostess, ME! 😉  Not my best picture, but will have to do for now.  😉 Love the heart necklace my husband gave me for our second married Christmas together and the heart tea-pin!!

Happy tea to you,