Saturday, March 28, 2009

Dinner Date

Tonight after we closed the shop, Tim and I went out to dinner at our favorite restaurant,
We had a really nice date. We celebrated some milestones like having our shop open for 1 year and our 29th wedding anniversary which was back in September. Also, 30 years ago this weekend Tim asked me to marry him. So tonight was a wonderful time to be together. And the food.....delicious! Dessert was awesome! The wine was wonderful! And my date was so handsome, I am so glad he asked me to marry him all those years ago! I am the luckiest and happiest girl in the world. I married a truly wonderful man.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

A Peek into the Shop

Hi, Welcome. Come on in. Check out our new goodies from our awesome crafters. We hope you find something you like.

Look around. We are ready for Easter, we have lots of bunnies and carrots. It may not feel like Spring on the Porch, but it is looking like Spring inside the Brickhouse Craft Shop!

Busy Busy

Help Wanted. Anyone want to come and help an old shop owner? I have boxes to unpack and things to organize. After you help me, we will have a glass of wine and sit on the porch and relax! We may need to throw some blankets over us...still cold here in Central PA. When is the warmer weather getting here? Tired of this cold weather.
I have to get back out to the shop. I hope to take some pictures of some of the goodies that arrived today, so please come back to The Porch later today and see what is new.
Have a nice day and if you want to help me...come on over..I'll be in the shop.

Friday, March 20, 2009

How we got from There to Here, continued...

Greetings from Tim at Brickhouse. Sorry folks - I'm a little late with this posting.

I realize that at this point in our journey, Patti and I could go on for days telling you about all the places we've been to and the experiences we had in New York and New England. I suppose it all started on our Honeymoon which was a week long drive through the New England states.

For the most part,the New England states ARE Primitive. During the time we lived in New York from 1998 to 2004, we made many day trips and long weekends to various places from Connecticut to Vermont. I believe I've worn out several sets of tires on Route 7. For Patti and me, it was hard to decide where NOT to stop. There were so many shops and restaurants and other businesses that were in buildings that had been there for hundreds of years. Old clapboard siding and beaded glass windows. A lot of old wooden furniture and fixtures. It was nice to see them being cared for and still serving a purpose after all those years. While we can't remember all the places, they all left an impression on us. So rather than take you to every stop we made, I'll just point out a few of the highlights.

Stockbridge, Massachusetts is home of the Red Lion Inn which got it's start around 1773 as a general store. Today, it is also the home of Country Curtains. Patti and I have visited the Red Lion Inn on several occasions. We have bought our share of Country Curtains products - in one of their newer stores close to our house in New York - through mail order - and in Stockbridge. The product was good no matter where we bought it - but there was something different and unique about shopping for the curtains in a store that was a couple hundred years old. Why am I talking about buying curtains? Country Curtains is an American company and for the most part sells products made in the USA.

The last place I'll mention is the Vermont Country Store. Vrest Orton opened the Vermont Country Store in Weston, Vermont in 1946. This is another store Patti and I visited during a weekend in Vermont. If you've never heard of this store, you should check out their website,
and if you ever get to the Weston area definitely visit the store. It is a mix of old and new.

So here we were, living in a nice country setting in New York with many old towns in the area that had Norman Rockwell main streets with little shops and businesses. Oh yeah - we also visited the Norman Rockwell Museum and toured his studio - but that's another story. Anyway, there we were, right next door to the New England states with all the Primitive inspiration you could ask for. We had already had the experience of selling our crafts at a Crafter's Mall in Texas - but the timing wasn't quite right for us to make the move to open our own shop. We thought more about doing some craft shows to see if there would still be demand for our crafts but ultimately decided against it. Still, we couldn't stop creating - for us, I guess. Patti had set up an awesome craft room in our house in Salt Point and remained inspired - which meant I was cutting wood for her to paint and decorate. We also bought our first computer - the one I'm typing this posting with (OK - so we even have a Primitive computer!). Little did we know the whole new craft world that Patti would discover online. Little did we know how important that discovery would be years later when we moved to Pennsylvania.

I believe there is one more place and experience that I will share with you on the next posting before I connect all the dots and complete the story of our Journey from There to Here. And here's 2 clues about where that place is: 1) Patti already mentioned it in one of her postings and 2) this place has the following motto: That The Future may learn from The Past...

Morning has broken

Morning Has Broken

Morning has broken Like the first morning, Black bird has spoken Like the first bird.

Praise the singing!
Praise for the morning!
Praise for them springing
Fresh from the Word!

Sweet the rain's new fall
Sunlit from heaven,
Like the first dewfall
On the first grass.
Praise for the sweetness
Of the wet garden,
Sprung in completeness
Where His feet pass.

Mine is the sunlight!
Mine is the morning.
Born of the one light
Eden saw play!
Praise with elation,
Praise ev'ry morning,
God's recreation
Of the newday!
Words: Eleanor Farjeon

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Our Brick House


We thought we would share pictures of our home. Our home was built in 1860. We bought our home September 2004. We moved in the weekend of our 25th wedding anniversary. What a weekend it was..we drove with a caravan from NY to PA on Friday, arriving just as a hurricane decided to visit Central PA! Saturday morning family members arrived to help us unpack. Sunday Tim and I left for our anniversary trip to Williamsburg, VA for a WEEK...I wanted to go but then again I didn't. I wanted to stay home and unpack, but I am so happy we decided to stick with our plans. Tim and I had a wonderful time and we are hoping to go back again.

Check out the porches! We love them. This is the east side and the sunrises are beautiful especially from the upper porch! Oh I wish it was summer, the grass, trees and gardens look so drab. I will have to take pictures another time and show you how nice it looks when things are blooming.

I love the star! We have 4 of these on our home. I remember as a young girl driving by this home and seeing the stars, thinking how cool those stars were and now I am living in the house with the stars!

This is picture of the porch of the craft shop looking towards our home. When Tim and I have our Porch Sitting Time this is the porch we sit on.

This is our view from the porch. The famous tire swing...our nieces and nephews love this swing. In the field across the road we can watch deer, red-tailed hawks, and peaceful and you should see the mountain in the nice!

Hope you enjoyed the little tour of our home.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Happy Saturday

Hope everyone is having a nice weekend....The LAST weekend of winter! YEA!
We are busy here at The Brickhouse. Tim is having fun working in his wood shop creating new birdhouses.I am so happy that he is back in the shop, I have a list a mile long of things I need him to cut for me. Truth be told, he is happy, too, being back in his shop. We are working on lots of new wood crafts, so stop by and see us.
We had some new customers stop by the Brickhouse today and some "old" customers! It is so nice to see our customers come back to visit much fun! My sister Beth and my niece Kylie stopped by today. Kylie is my little helper, she loves to get behind the counter and help check out customers. In a couple more years we may have to hire her!
Today some new pieces of pottery arrived from Indian Trail Pottery. Bob has been working on some new pottery and what an amazing job he is doing...THANK YOU BOB! You have to stop by and see Bob's pottery!
I have to go...customers are here.....everyone have a great weekend. Stop by the porch again and we can chat.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Winter go away!

I think winter has returned here to PA. It has been so cold today.
I have not seen the Robins since Sunday. I so hope that this cold weather will soon be behind us....I have cabin fever so bad. I want to take some pictures around our yard but everything is so brown and drab. I did notice today more little green shoots pushing up out of the ground....keeps my hopes alive that we will be enjoying some porch sitting time soon!

Today I had a visitor, Tarrah, the lovely wife of our pottery, Bob.
She stopped by the shop and brought a piece of pottery which I am not putting in the shop. I am KEEPING IT! Bob you are going to just have to make more for our customers because this one is mine! I love his pottery and I love when Tarrah visits The Brickhouse. She is such a sweet girl and so supportive of Bob. They make a great team.

Tomorrow's Friday, the shop will be open and we are hoping for nice weather to bring our customers out to visit us. Who knows maybe I will see the robins again this weekend.
I hope to get some pictures posted on here this weekend. We are expecting some goodies to arrive and I will get the camera out and share them with all of you. So stop by The Porch this weekend and visit with us. Happy Weekend everyone!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Porch Sitting Weather

Hope everyone is having a nice week. We had a nice weekend here at The Brickhouse. We had some new customers stop by and they must like us because they said they would be back. A shipment of goodies from April arrived on Friday. By Sunday we were sold out of some of the goodies. We had to place another order...ANXIOUSLY awaiting more of the wonderful creations from April. Today we received some more awesome crafts from our wonderful friend, Teresa We love Teresa and her awesome creations and so do our customers! I talked to Teresa today and her son is home on Spring break and he has been busy in the wood shop. A few days ago I posted about his wonderful wooden bowls that he makes. Check out Teresa's site to see his awesome bowls. He is a very talented young man.
I finally saw a ROBIN! Sunday morning I was on the porch and low and behold a robin decided to visit me....Oh I was so happy to see him! Spring is right around the corner! Today I noticed some more of our Spring bulbs and perennials poking up to catch some rays of Spring sunshine. I am so ready for the warmer weather to finally get here....we want our Porch Sitting weather. Tim and I did spend a few minutes on the porch on nice! I think the locals here in Millersburg are so used to seeing us sitting on our porch. It is kinda like the Robins being the first sign that Spring has arrived. Here in Millersburg seeing Tim and Patti sitting on their porch is a sign that Spring has come to our little town!
Thanks for stopping by our porch...please come again and we can chat!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

How we got from there to here, continued...

Hello again from Tim. If you've been following my postings on our Blog, you know that I've been telling you about the people, places and things that have led Patti and I to start Brickhouse Craft Shop and the ways in which they have influenced the style and mood of our Shop. In my last Blog I said I would share some experiences from our time in New York state. Patti and I lived in New York prior to moving to Texas in 1993. We moved back to New York again in 1998.

The first house we bought in New York in 1984 and the house we bought in Texas in 1993 were both built for us and so they were brand new. We knew when we moved back to New York in 1998 that we wanted to find an older house with a bit more charm and character. And we wanted to live in Dutchess County - this part of New York had beautiful countryside with a lot of nice farms and properties and lots of little towns with cool shops and restaurants (yeah - we like a good meal.)

Well, we found an older house alright - an 1865 Eye Brow Colonial in a small little town called Salt Point, which is close to Rhinebeck, Hyde Park, Millbrook and a few other neat little towns. It is also close to the New England states, where we discovered many places we liked to visit from time to time.

In my last Blog, I asked if anyone had ever heard of Yankee Magazine. Sherie from Bittersweet Primitives did. Sherie was born in Gardner, Massachusetts. Although we've not been to that part of Massachusetts, we did visit the western part of that state frequently.

For those of you who don't know, Yankee Magazine is devoted to all things New England. By the time Patti and I left New York for Pennsylvania in 2004, we could turn to many of the pages in a Yankee Magazine and say 'been there, done that.'

Actually one of the first experiences in New York that had an impact on us happened when we lived there prior to moving to Texas in 1993. We were returning from a Fall Foliage Day at a nearby Ski Resort. We had a nice day and were enjoying a leisurely drive home when we noticed a cool looking store - a Craft Shop. We decided to stop and have a look. As soon as we walked into the store we heard music. We'd never heard it before but we both liked it. We asked the person behind the counter about it and they gave us the name of the artist and the album (remember albums?). Our next stop was at a local mall where we bought the album. Even now, years later, when Patti and I hear this music, it takes us back to that day and the fun we had. (Patti here...Tim we need to mention the name of the "album"...It was DEEP BREAKFAST by Ray Lynch...ok on with the rest of the story!)

After moving to Salt Point, we took advantage of the many points of interest both locally and in the New England states. This whole part of the country had a lot of Primitive influence.

Two of the neatest places we discovered were Country Stores. The Schultzville General Store was about 20 minutes from our house and was one of those stores that had been there forever and whose outside was plastered with posters for the local church Spaghetti Supper, the Firehouse Fish Fry, the local plumber's business card and a reward for a lost cat. Go inside (don't mind the squeaky floors) and grab a cup of coffee, a muffin and the morning paper. You really didn't need the paper - the folks inside had already started discussing the news. By the time you finished your coffee and muffin you were fully informed and up to date on all the local and national news. The Cable company will be running the new cable through town next month - not next week. The President is going to veto that new bill. Take the poster down for the lost cat - Mrs. Miller found her in her flower bed. And - oh yeah - it's going to rain tonight.

We discovered Bangall Country Store when we were looking for a church we wanted to visit. This store had also been there forever. We started attending the church and Bangall Country Store became a regular part of the trip. The floors squeaked, the door squeaked - this place was old. Maybe that's why we liked it - it was like an old friend who you were comfortable with. Besides, they made a good breakfast and the atmosphere was way better than an IHOP or Denny's. They would bring your breakfast to your table and then let you enjoy it at your own pace. You decided when you were finished and then went to the counter and paid your bill. They weren't worried about turning tables. If you enjoyed your meal they were happy and that was all that mattered.

Maybe a few more stops in New York and then on to New England. I'll bet many of you have heard of Route 66. What about Route 7 anywhere between Danbury, Connecticut and Burlington, Vermont?

Sure Sign Of Spring

NO Not the Robin. It is a special bird and very beautiful :) ...Tim heard the songbird this has a strange call...sounds something like this....cutwood, cutwood, cutwood. This is not one of Tim's favorite birds! I told him that he probably won't hear the bird if he goes into his work shop today and turns on the saw! cutwood, cutwood, cutwood...I love this bird!
As for the Robin, I have not seen it yet...but I am determined to see one today. It is suppose to be in the high 60's here in Central PA. My sister Kasey and my friend Teresa, both who live here in PA, have told me they have seen flocks of Robins. I love seeing the first Robin of the Spring season.
We are hoping for a good day here at The Brickhouse. Hoping the warmer weather brings out our customers/friends. Yesterday we received goodies from our crafter, April. Love her goodies and so do our customers..I had her goodies in the shop for an hour and EVERY customer that came in bought her goodies! I swear we have customers hiding behind the trees waiting for the Fed Ex truck to come so they can come and shop!! Gotta love 'em and WE DO!
Hey do ya hear that....? cutwood cutwood....Tim do ya hear that bird singing?
And another sure sign of Spring here at The Brickhouse...lots of birdhouses and lighted houses and Tim's custom built Churches sitting on the take a drive to the country and check them out! You may even hear the songbirds singing! Oh the beautiful sounds of Spring!

Friday, March 6, 2009

And the last shall be first

Or should we say the latest shall be first. This is our first post of our "Meet the Crafters". We are glad you stopped by our porch and we hope you enjoy meeting our talented crafters. Keep checking back as we will introduce you to all our crafting friends here at The Brickhouse.
Today we are featuring our newest (latest!) crafter, Janet. A few weeks ago I was in The Brickhouse and a gentleman walked in and proudly told me that his wife makes baskets and would I be interested in seeing them. I said I would, so he went back out to his truck and brought in a amazing basket! I was ohhing and ahhing, I think I may have embarrassed myself with my reaction to the basket. I asked him if I could have that one basket to sell in our shop. He left it with me and the very next weekend we sold it. Since then he has brought more baskets to The Brickhouse and we have been selling them! We have been getting such positive reactions from our customers over these baskets and we are so happy that they found their way to our shop. Greg is very proud of his wife and her talent. It makes me smile whenever he comes into the shop with more baskets, he just beams with pride. We asked Janet and Greg to write a little about themselves so we could feature them here on the sit back and get to know Janet, our newest crafter:

Hi, my name is Janet and I am from central PA. I am a homemaker and crafter. My joy is giving my homemade crafts away to friends and family, but dear husband Greg had another idea! On his way to work he came across The Brickhouse Craft Shop.. Here is the rest of the story told by my husband....

Over 34 years ago, I purchased a sewing machine for my wife as a Christmas gift. I never dreamed that this many years later, she’d still be using that same machine to make baskets from quilting fabrics and rope that people have come to love. Janet (I call her “my little basket case”) has sewn her way into this website with both creativity and flair. With an obvious talent for detail and a love for colonial folk-art, she’s now created her first edition of rope baskets. We call it the "Gregorian Collection,” and plans for her second generation: the "Victorian Collection" are already underway. Each basket is marked by her wonderful personality and styled to match a certain expression of the Colonial Era. Special attention is paid to detail and the highest quality of workmanship is evident. To each basket, she adds a special twist or touch that makes it unique and in a class of its own. With prayerful gratitude to each one purchasing one of these unique creations, we wish you God’s best and our many thanks.

Thank you Greg and Janet for letting us meet you. I have pictures of Janet's baskets, but let me tell you these pictures do not do them justice. They are so beautiful and you have to see them in person to actually enjoy them...that or maybe I should have a professional photographer take the pictures! If you are in our area you MUST stop by The Brickhouse and see these beautiful baskets. If you can't make it to our shop and would like more info on the baskets please email us. ~~Tim and Patti~~

Friday Funny

I had to share this Birthday card my sister sent to cracked me up! Click on the pictures so you can read the card, especially the front of the card!
Love it..thank you Beth!
I am off to open the shop and then
you all need to stop by the porch later
today. We will be featuring our first crafter here at The Brickhouse. SO excited! So come on back and sit on the porch and meet Janet!


Tuesday, March 3, 2009

The apple doesn't fall...

Teresa is a crafter here at The Brickhouse. She has amazing talent and she passed her crafting gene on to her son.The apple doesn't fall too far from the tree in this family! I just had to share these wonderful bowls.
They were made by her 19 yr old son. I bought this one and I love it!
You can check them out here:
And while you are on this ETSY site, check out
Teresa's treasures.
Some of you have asked if we have
a website to buy goodies from our shop...we don't..we sell only from our shop..SO if you can't make the trip to visit us at The Brickhouse, you can purchase Teresa's wonderful creations through her site...go check it out.
Here is her blog:

Monday, March 2, 2009

Cold hands, warm hearts

The big snow storm missed us. We had snow and wind but no big deal. The wind and the cold is the is SO COLD outside...brrrr... OH I am SO ready for Spring!
We had a great weekend at The Brickhouse Craft Shop. I spent most of Sunday contacting our crafters and ordering more goodies for the shop. The wonderful bunnies made by April are almost sold out and I had to order more! I ordered more lights and also more tarts. I have a few more crafters to contact...whew...I don't know what to think...I watch the news in the evening and it is all gloom and doom. I get nervous and think I should hold off ordering for the shop, but our customers are still coming into the shop and buying. So I can't let them down, I have to order more goodies! I need to get back into my craft room and get busy painting. Tim made some wonderful birdhouses and I NEED to get them painted.
I had a wonderful birthday weekend. Tim made it special. He bought me a very YUMMY cake...CHOCOLATE! Does he know me or what?
Tonight he surprised me with a gift ( I am thinking I am going to make this my birthday WEEK..LOL), he got me the Jane Seymour Open Heart Necklace . OH I love it and I love him!

Thank you Tim. AND a big thank you to all my friends and new blogging friends for all the Birthday wishes.
Stay warm everyone