Monday, February 9, 2009

Raspberries and St. Francis

When we lived in Wisconsin, my husband had a statue of St. Francis outside his study window. During a prolonged subzero spell, his head fell off. (St. Francis, not my husband.) Does that sound familiar, Shelley? We put his head back on and it remained while he stood for many years protecting the wildlife in the garden.

When we moved, we decided not to move St. Francis. He was large and heavy, not to mention his unstable head. My husband has missed having St. Francis around and we have plans to get another large statue for the yard.

Meanwhile, I have found a lovely plaque of St. Francis. Doesn't he look inviting on this tree? There is a creeping hydrangea (well, that's what we call it) at the foot of the tree which will grow and bloom around him this summer.

I have always been a promoter of shopping locally whenever that is possible. I pay more money to buy books at my local bookseller when I could easily order them more cheaply Online. But I NEED my local bookseller. And the only way to keep local business in business is to purchase from them.

I have now expanded my definition of "local" to include bloggers I follow. One of those is Helen Ellis, the owner of an online (and in-store) boutique and that is where I purchased St. Francis. From her blog "Wings and Things," you can access the Online boutique. Here is the direct link to the Online store: Helen is a wonderful photographer and sells her photographs and cards at the boutique. But there is much more. There are all sorts of nesting boxes, birdfeeders, birdbaths, and garden art work. I urge you to check it out.

The St. Francis plaque is made by Carruth Studios. One of our local shops sells Carruth Studios art, but I feel that buying from Helen is like buying from a friend. Her prices are better too.

Here is another Carruth piece I've had for a while. I have it hanging at the end of a kitchen cabinet. It amusingly gives the "raspberries" to our guests.

If you know a fellow blogger has a store or an Etsy site, browse there for your next gifts. If he or she has written a book, buy one. Let's keep it in the blogging community whenever we can. Just as we need our local stores, we need our friends in the blog world.


Betsy Banks Adams said...

Oh Carolyn, I LOVE LOVE LOVE the raspberries.. Those facial expressions are priceless. CUTE!!!!

That is so good of you to feature our friend, the Bird Lady. Helen is a neat woman--and I wish her store well. She has worked HARD to keep it going in this rough economy.

Love the St. Francis. I'm sure you have heard his prayer on Eternal Life. "Lord, make me an instrument of thy peace..." Fabulous!!!

Have a great day.

Cedar ... said...

Carolyn, I agree whole-heartedly with your thoughts to buy locally, including our blogging family. Gives a whole new meaning to the term "keep it in the family", right?

troutbirder said...

Neat! My St Francis is buried up to his shoulders. I should either go rescue him.... or take and post a picture. Then again too many posts on our wonderful winter might get me a whiney reputation.

Kim said...

Love both of those!!! I will be on the lookout for cute little things like that as the weather continues to warm so thanks for the info.

I too like buying locally and have been doing it with bloggers and their books as well. It's nice to see the money you spend go to a person rather than a large company!

Cheryl said...

Great post ....I could not agree more.....we think alike....I do try as much as I can to buy local ......and use blogging friends....

I love St Francis....what a beautiful feature.....

Heather said...

Great post. I think our economy wouldn't be in such a 'freaked out' state, if we were more conscientious. Truly, there are enough jobs and enough money to go around - buy local.
I love St. Francis, too and had a giggle about his head falling off. Any guy who was so into the animals like that is all right in my book.

Cicero Sings said...

I'm with you on supporting independent business! I hate to think what will happen when all these big "cheap" stores have knocked out all the little guys ... then what options will we have?!!

Jane said...

I agree with you completely. I always try to buy local, and that includes supporting small businesses that sell paint, tile, and other basic home improvement products.

Enjoy this great NC weather!


Shelley said...

Carolyn - LOL at the St. Francis statue! I need a new one for this spring! I LOVE that plaque you have - it's beautiful! And I agree - we should patronize our fellow bloggers when we can. I've been bugging my hubby for an item on Helen's site - I hope he comes thru for Valentine's day!

Jayne said...

Indeed we do Carolyn. What a wonderful post and even better idea to share. Ruthie at Nature Knitter also has an Etsy store to visit. Helen's shop is beautiful with so many lovely things.

Donna said...

Hi Carolyn,
The St. Francis plaque looks great hanging on the tree, and I love the raspberry one. How cute!

I believe in supporting and patronizing our local shops too. I also include my blogging friends. Seems like the right thing to do!

Enjoy your day!

Carol Murdock said...

Two statues I've always wanted are St.Francis and The Bird Girl from
" Midnight In The Garden Of Good and Evil.I'm gonna have to see about getting these two!Thanks for reminding me!

NCmountainwoman said...

Thanks for your comments, everyone.

Troutbirder - I never tire of your snowy pictures. Makes me happy all over again that I'm not in Wisconsin anymore.

Shelley - I thought of our own incident with St. Francis when I read your post so long ago. Thanks goodness our St. Francis had his head unbroken and lying next to him.

Carol - I love the little bird girl from "Midnight" as well. I used to see her in catalogs, but not lately.

Unknown said...

I love your garden art. They are Carruth, correct? I have the raspberries and several of his other pieces. I just love them all!

Love your Goldens and your close ups of the birds are awesome!