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I'm not a Southern Beauty,
I'm not an Eastern rose;
I'm just a lil' Western Gal
With freckles on her nose.

Sunday, February 28

Banner Haus News and Musings

Here are two of my pets, Hadji and Twinkie. Twinkie is a very old gal, and I think you can see her lovely eyes in her picture. I cut that hole in the fence so that she can look out. The dogs have another "window" at ground level, with chicken-wire across it, so that they can lay and spy on the neighborhood.

Hadji is in the picture below, perhaps wondering when the narcissus will bloom. Tomorrow, Hadji, most likely! He is my little mahout, riding about on my shoulders and just generally having me at his beck and call. His fur is white underneath, deepest brown on top. He cannot see properly from one eye, and weighs less than 5 pounds.

Like all of my animals, both were rescues. Hadji was in particularly bad shape, but he has an easy life of it now!


"Life is made up of marble and mud."
   Nathaniel Hawthorne

Free Vintage Postcard Image:

We've heard of dyed-in-the-wool. Here a long-ago artist has created dyed-in-the-shell chicks. Right-click to save.

Saturday, February 27

Attack of the Bunnies

Banner Haus News and Musings:

No news is good news, donkey frens.

But here is a musing: When I'm scrubbin' out a toilet in the ol' bunkhouse, or standing in the grocery store choosing between the 73-cent can of Tiny Greenish Peas and the 89-cent can of Really Teeny Green Peas (and looking longingly at the $1.18 can of Actual Microscopic True-Green Peas), or falling asleep after letting the dogs in (or out) for the tenth time that night, I think of MANY WONDERFUL POSTING TOPICS. By morning, or by the end of the task, or by the time I get to the checkout line, the idea, which I assured myself was so great that I could never fergit it, slips my poor mind.

I'm going to start talking into the digital-recording part of the cellphone so that I don't fergit my grand ideas. Perhaps someone will mistake me for a glamorous spy or even a gainfully employed person. Now to find where in the heck the cellphone hides in the purse...

Vintage Postcard Freebie:

Here we have Sir Rabbit. Right-click to save him this small size, or regular-click so a bigger version loads, then save it. Joining him is what appears to be a very inebriated bunny, who has discovered that home-brewed carrot ale is just the thing for helping him paint over a billion Easter eggs each year.

Friday, February 26

Potato Mania

Banner Haus News and Musings:

Howdy lil' donkey frens [and any lurking burro acquaintances]. Top o'the cyber mornin' to ye...

Attention lil' ones, I still carry a flail, but I have added a lovely lil' piece of barbed wire (correctly pronounced "bob whar") to it, to keep everyone in you donkeys be good to yrselves and we'll all git along.

Now you made me sing! "Git along, lil' donkeys, git along, git along"...ow, that hurt yr poor ears...


"My friends, there are no friends."
      - Coco Chanel

Vintage Image Freebie:

First, more potatoes. My bloggie fren Ms. Sparrow didn't cotton to my last potato. Got my ire up. I thought to myself, "Myself, what can you do to irritate the poor woman further? Post MORE POTATOES!"

And here, from someone's old studio portrait, a colorized gal. She looks like she's about "give up" on gettin' any sensible comments out of her donkey frens, if you wuz to ask ME.

I think if you regular-click on the potatoes, they get BIGGER. Undoubtedly the image is hosted in Texas.

Thursday, February 25

I'm Lookin' Over

Banner Haus News and Musings:

Snow all gone, high will be in the upper 60s today. Hooray!

The air suddenly turned soft yesterday, and the snow was melting quickly. It was warm enough to go out with just shirt-sleeves. Don't know why I'm so ready fer spring this year.

Little donkey frens, here is a picture of a jar of dandelion blossoms, from last year. I might go pick another jar or two later today. And I think I'll repost something from my olde Penniwig's bloggie under this picture, too:

"...I like to read and reread the book "The Hiding Place" by Corrie Ten Boom, which is a memoir of a Dutch woman who was a member of the underground in WWII. She and her sister were deeply religious Christians and were captured by the Germans and put in a camp. Corrie's sister Betsie was praying in gratitude for all their "blessings" in the death camp. She even thanked the Lord for the fleas in the barracks. Corrie thought that was going entirely too far. But Betsie reminded her that the Bible said 'Give thanks in ALL circumstances.'

"I don't bring religion into this bloggie much. That's not the purpose of my bloggie. And my religion is not very common in the USA. I only mention it now because I do not like to give a false impression of myself via this blog. I don't want to "pass myself off" as something I'm not. That's disrespectful to my followers and myself.

"But I can say I deeply respect and enjoy reading the Bible. And that line of 'Give thanks in all circumstances' really struck me because of its wisdom, its uncanny depth. That's why I put the part about "weeds" in the poppin. People think of weeds as 'no good,' as something bad, as something not to be thankful for, as useless. But God has such a different view. We would have no butterflies if not for weeds. We would have no bees, no crops, not much of anything. Thank you for the weeds!"

And here's the graphic I put with it:

Vintage Postcard Freebie:

I had to clean this up considerable. It was a raggedy thing, tore up pretty bad. But the doggie reminds me of bloggie fren Amrita's white German Shepherd. A couple of good-luck clovers accompany it.

Remember you can save these by right-clicking them. 

Wednesday, February 24

Lil' Miss in A Springtime Gown

Banner Haus News and Musings:

My jonquils are about to bloom -- noticed them yesterday. I hope the snow benefitted them, or at least won't interfere with their beautiful, cheery blooms.

The yard is dappled with dandelions already. The backyard, that is; the front and side yards are rock.

In Colonial times, people had "swept" yards. No respectable person would have grass growing around their home. They actually would sweep the bare earth and kept it packed down very tightly. Sometimes they had a "sanded" yard, if they were well-off. People had sanded kitchens, too. Makes sense, when you consider the fire hazard wood and grass can pose.


"All old women were beauties once, we very well know."
     -William Makepeace Thackeray, Vanity Fair

Vintage Postcard Freebie:

Here we have a little blossom gal, taken from a vintage postcard and placed on a new background. Kindly click the picture to make a larger image load, then right-click it to save. 

Tuesday, February 23

Yr Yearly Free Potato

Banner Haus News and Musings:

Free potato graphic now available.

Here we have a tiny baby Texas potato, as is our yearly tradition. 

Oh, don't try to fool this lil' donkey, I know you were waiting fer it and were about to start squeaking, braying, and perhaps even stomping about wanting yr 2010 Lucky Spud.

In other news, SNOW. Fer Pete's sake!


Vintage Free Postcard Image:

Fer those greediguts who want an extry image, mayhap fer a sidebar, here is one to right-click and save. Or, regular-click it and let a larger image load and then save it if you want it large. "Greedigut," by the way, is a very old word, not in use in too many places anymore. But our family used it regularly, and sang this lovely little ditty about me: "Green-eyed greedigut, Stay at home and eat-it-up."

Monday, February 22

Ring Ring

Banner Haus News and Musings

My poor ol' ears are ringing. Sounds like a hysterical gathering of crickets of some high-pitched alien sort, tuning up for a dreadful symphony. They've no business ringing like that. Hope yrs don't tend to ring. Reminds me of the part in Lord of the Rings, in the Fellowship of the Rings part, where crickets in the marshes are driving everyone wild, especially poor Sam.

These are ear-rings I could do without.

I have so many new earrings made, by the by! But haven't taken pictures, double-tarnation! Been busy writing articles fer MONEY! Now, I'm tore up about sharing my discovery. It's the greedy little donkey in me. But I've always been open-handed to a fault. Why start settin' on a nest of golden eggs, hiding 'em, instead of sharing 'em?

If yr in need of cash, try, if you think you can write a bit. You can write articles, and then they put the money in yr PayPal account if the person ordering the article likes it. I made $16 tonight. Of course, that may be where the ringing-in-the-ears came from, now that I think about it. All hunched up over the keyboard, worried to a nub.

Vintage Postcard Image, and Some Sidebar Bunnies

Now m'dear donkey frens, you know all of these are free. I have my pay-for ones on another page. So help yrselves, don't be shy about taking 'em. One poor soul thought these free ones were fer sale. Dearies, I think she "dranks" a bit.

These are, of course, the work of long-ago artists, cleaned up and altered a bit by little ol' me.

Right-click to save. Fer the postcards, if you just click on 'em regular at first, sometimes a bigger version will load up fer you.

Sunday, February 21

Vintage Bunnies Guard Large Egg

Comment Corral is Open!

Banner Haus Musings:

Xashee mentioned hand-clapping games yesterday. Those were my very favorite. But so many of the rhymes are now forgotten...

This one had lots of "triple-claps" and was fun to do:

A sailor went to sea-sea-sea

To see what he could see-see-see

But all that he could see-see-see
Was the bottom of the deep blue sea-sea-sea!

I think triplets were a very popular clapping-move:

Miss Mary Mack Mack Mack
All dressed in black black black
With silver buttons buttons buttons
All down her back back back
She asked her mother mother mother
For fifty cents cents cents
To see an elephant elephant elephant
Tump over the fence fence fence
He jumped so high high high
He reached the sky sky sky
And didn't come back back back
Til the fourth of July ly ly

Now who was it mentioning the Chinese jump-rope? I love it. It was basically a way to do "cat's cradle" sorts of things with your feet.

And how about the double bamboo poles, held by two girls, and which were hit twice on top of bricks, then drawn together with a snap as the "dancer" was busy with some tricky footwork in and out of the opening and closing rectangle? I wonder if other places had the amount of bamboo poles we had in old New Orleans. Bamboo was everywhere on our side of the river.

Vintage Postcard Freebie:  

These rabbits are onto ya. They know you want that big egg. 

Click to make bigger, then right-click to save onto yr own computer, donkey frens. Or save the smaller version is yr going to use it in yr sidebar.

Saturday, February 20

Pretty Easter Vintage Postcard and A Curious Prediction

The Comment Corral is open, my donkey friends! Now, ye know I'm the biggest donkey of them all...I like company in that corral...

The Banner Haus News:
A prediction: A new comet soon to be declared!

And, my son is 20 today!

Old-Time Games
Along with the autograph book rhymes mentioned in the last post, as children we girls knew dozens of jump-rope rhymes and games.

There were simple games, with a single rope being turned at a reasonable rate, where someone could suddenly yell "Hot peppers!" and those turning the rope would pick up the pace dramatically and the rope would just become a blur.

There was also a way of mimicking the two-turner jump-roping, with a child holding one end of the rope and the other end tied to a pole or something similar. Although the mechanics of it all now escapes me, there was a way to both keep turning one end and to turn around and be within the twirling rope, as if there were a couple of friends turning the rope instead of just the single person. But it was heck on the shoulder.

Here are a few jump rope rhymes, that sometimes had movements associated with them (like running in and out of the rope):

Cinderella, dressed in yella,
Went upstairs to kiss a fella.
Made a mistake,
Kissed a snake.
How many doctors did it take?
1,2,3,4...[until you miss]


Not last night, but the night before,
Twenty-four robbers came knocking at my door.
I ran out, as they ran in.
Hit me on the head with a rolling pin.
I asked them what they wanted,
This is what they said:
"Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear, do the splits!
Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear, do a kick!
Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear, touch the ground,
Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear, turn around!"

The Yankee kids said "Spanish Dancer, do the splits" etc., but we had the Teddy Bear version.

Vintage Easter Postcard Freebie
Remember, lil' donkeys, if ye click on the image, many times a larger image will load, if yr looking for a bigger image. Or, just right-click the smaller one if you intend on putting it in yr sidebar or something like that.

This gal has herself a very intelligent-looking rabbit, mayhap even a royal rabbit of some sort -- just look at its serene yet haughty expression.

Friday, February 19

Hare-Raising Graphic Fer Ye

Local News:
I'm in a big tussle with Blogger. I can't get my comments to look different from visitors' comments, like back on Penniwig's. Wah! And it's the same template! What gives? Fighting with pixels and bytes is just no fair. Show yerselves, ye cowards! Come out here and fight fair with this ol' gal!

Now some of ye know that I had a maniac on the card aisle the other day, a bad guy. Pushing against me. Now, today, there was another horrible person, going fer the front end, so to speak. I am going to start carrying my Pocket Flail. Maybe brass knuckles. I don't know.

I miss the old-timey notion of having autograph books. When I was young, I had one, a gift from my only friend. Painfully shy, I eventually began taking it with me on my treks around New Orleans, and, in a burst of awkward courage, would sometimes ask folks to sign it. Here are a few of the verses written in it, circa 1968:

2 sweet
2 be

Holly had a little car,
That little car was red.
And everywhere that Holly went,
The cops picked up the dead.

When you get old,
And all out of shape,
Remember girdles
At 2.98

Of course, this old chestnut:

I thought, I thought, I thought in vain.
I thought until I wrecked my brain.
And then I though, "I'll sign my name."

One of my favorites:

You ask me to write -
What will it be?
Two little words:

There's loads more. I love 'em.

Vintage Postcard Image Freebie:
Here's a pretty postcard to git yrselves in the mood for Easter! Mr. Rabbit looks rather distinguished, a bit elven if ye ask me.

Right-click to save, regular-click to load up a larger image first, then right-click the larger one.

Thursday, February 18

HORSEWHIP ME NOW, and A St. Pat's Lovely Lady

Banner Haus News
Let there be no "told-you-so's."

Comments have commenced. Some heartfelt emails have convinced me to just relax a bit and not have my chaps in a knot and to stop worrying about having an "obligation-free bloggie," which was actually rather preying on me olde mind, and just let people leave comments if they like. I never felt like I pushed anyone to comment over at Penniwig's -- at least I hope no one ever felt obliged. Never meant to hurt feelings by turning comments off, either.

The comments were what made Penniwig's interesting, actually. I just sat back and let me olde readers do the work fer me.

Mayhap the Banner Haus readers will do the same! But I'm still a clam and I ain't having a thing to do with yr antics!!!

Comment if ye like, don't if ye don't. Tarnation!

I'm hoping for lots of TWITTERING, actually! Guess a bloggie can have both. 

Old-Time Lore:
Make yr sewing repairs last a long time by running yr length of thread over a little piece of beeswax or paraffin before stitching with it.

Vintage Postcard Image:
St. Patrick's Day painting from the brush of Ellen Clapsaddle, who created many thousands of postcard images during her career. This elegant lady seems to be getting a jump on Easter Bonnet season.

Right-click to save. Clicking on one of the posted images will often load a larger image.

Wednesday, February 17

Winter Overstays Its Welcome, and St. Pat's Graphic

Local and National News

Speaking for many, a local bunny had this to say:

Old-Time Tidbit:

If you rinse yr hair in extremely cold water, it will be very shiny. It's the hair that needs the cold water on it, not the scalp. This tip is more welcome in the summer months, but th' Ol' Western Gal is vain enough to do it year-round.

Vintage Graphic for Today:

I'm amazed at the number of St. Patrick's Day cards and postcards that were created both in times past and today. Here is one from the brush of a long-ago artist. Right-click the one below to save this size. Regular-click the image to make a larger one load, that you can then save, if you want it bigger. You can rename it at that time, too.

Tuesday, February 16

Neither Fish Nor Fowl - Free Vintage Images

Actually, my pets, it's both fish and fowl today.

Banner Haus News:
Look for a lot of chocolate-colored glitter on Easter projects, and quite a bit of "sanding sugar" on Easter decorations this year.

I saw pictures of eggs on a lot of the cards I put out yesterday. Real eggses, m'dears. (By the bye, the plural of egg ought to be eggses, if there were any justice in this world.) TURQUOISE and brown feature prominently, as do the "frosted" eggs, with the pretend sugar-floof on them. They are stunning.


New Orleans was quite a hellish place, for me, to be raised, in many ways. But sometimes I think back to the long-ago days before the world seemed to become totally craven, and how the parades would roll past and the doubloons would ring on the pavement, and the krewes would tease and tease the crowd by holding aloft some incredibly desirable item, such as a bamboo cane with a DOLLY on the top...I miss that part of New Orleans. The flambeau carriers at the night parades, and the exhiliration of being part of the throng in the dark. Happy Mardi Gras, and RIP New Orleans, and old memories.

Quote for the Day

From Brenda Ueland's recounting of her Russian piano teacher's passion for music -- and call for passion in whatever you do:

"In Russia, when we make love, we crush the bones!"

Vintage Graphics Freebies:

A fish bouquet, perfect for most any occasion, and a pretty red-winged blackbird advertisement. Don't fergit to try or to add type to any photo or graphic, free. Or gimme $1 to do it.

Right-click to save. Enjoy. Clicking on a graphic will often bring up a larger version.

Monday, February 15

Wise Bivalves and An Antique Rose Postcard

Banner Haus News:

Nationally: Chocoholics throughout the nation report that they ate too much chocolate yesterday. Those in Hawaii also admit to eating too many macadamia nuts along with it.

Local News: I don't want to hear any "I-told-you-so's," and since I turned off the comments, I won't, but I admit to missing reading the comments of my bloggie frens and passersby quite a bit.

On the other hand, I just want to set around and read Tweets, as it's ever and ever so much easier. Aye, I'm spoiled.

Have to credit bloggie fren Julia (the amazing aproned botanist) for her quip that those who use Twitter are "twitterpated." I had forgotten that term!

Still, I am maintaining my clam-like silence on this bloggie! 

Interestingly, evidently most hinged bivalves are silent, brooding creatures. We say someone "clammed up," and we also say, "As solitary as an oyster." Or at least I do, because I read incessantly, and have many and many an oldtime expression in my vocabulary. And a person picks up a few things in 451 years, which indeed is my actual age.

I think it's wise to collect as many sayings as you can!

A Quote from the Bookshelf:
"Hobbits...have a fund of wisdom and wise sayings that men have mostly never heard or have forgotten long ago."  J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit

Antique Postcard Freebie:
Roses of a rich buttery hue.

Right-click to save. Don't fergit to click on the graphic to see if there is a larger size available, too. And don't fergit to try out the free "add type or words" features of and, either.

Sunday, February 14

Confusticate It! and A Lovely Clover Postcard

Valentine's Day is today...but on to St. Patrick's Day!

The News: Hysteria at the Valentine's Cards, Idiocy on My Part, and A Recollection of Simpler Times

Let's get the idiocy out of the way. 

I was somewhat miffed after closing Penniwig's, because I noticed that no one at all had kept me as a Follower on their bloggies. All my frens had rudely thrown me off their Followers list. My little "updates" box was...empty...empty...not a single update..."The nerve of them!"

I moped around a bit, savagely stuffing cards back into their pockets at the store, muttering darkly about "ingrates," and then decided I would attempt to sneak back onto the bloggies...I went back to Penniwig's to get to the addresses...and then it hit me: I had followed people as PENNIWIG, not as BANNERHAUS...

So I"m slowly adding THIS bloggie as a my, the troubles I invent fer myself...but all of ye were awful mean to throw me off like that...well, you ALMOST did...cruel, it was...shame, I certainly will remain a clam, yep, I have broken the clam-code-of-silence a few times, but am holding quite firm in my resolve to keep this a totally obligation-free extracting comments out of visitors or putting in my oar at their bloggies...

Work News:
My boss and I are taking turns darting into the melee at the card counter and attempting to replenish the stock right on Valentine's Day. As some of you know, I work for a card company as a "retail merchandiser," which means I go to various stores and restock and straighten their greeting card displays. But that will be winding to an end after Easter, since the hours will be cut down to only 3 a week, and that's not worth the gas.

At the card area, it's mainly men now, angrily demanding why we don't have cards they like. We do have lovely cards. They will run these gentlemen about $7. All the more reasonable pretty cards are long gone, bought by men with a bit of foresight.

Happier Thoughts:

I remember weaving garlands of white clover flowers, putting them on as necklaces, and wearing them as headpieces, too. Their honey smell was wonderful. 

It was a simpler time. Fer me, a miserable time, in many ways, but still, simpler. Now, the poor kids have real and virtual misery. Back then: just real misery.

It seems to me that long ago, when I was young, the children actually had more handicraft skills. The elementary-school girls knew so many speciality weaves when I was young, and would teach one another how to do herringbone (4-strand) braids, Square Braid (4 strands), and the Dutch, with up to 7 strands. Many could also embroider beautifully, and I knew at least 20 fancy stitches.

I pity today's children in that simple things are not valued in many homes. Arrogance, wealth, external power and crassness seem to have taken pride of place.

Old-Time Tip:
Dampen yr straw broom before you sweep. And have at least two good straw brooms; one for outside, and one for in. Not only does dampening the straw release a fresh, hay-like scent, but it sweeps up dust more efficiently. But never dampen it if sweeping up sugar, sugar.

Vintage Postcard Freebie: 
Pretty lady with dove and clover. Looks to be that tall Crimson Clover.

Right-click to save. Enjoy.

Saturday, February 13

A Rescue and An Antique Postcard: Girl with Quill and Menu

A big "Howdy" to you, Elves and Others! Greetings to all my olde Penniwig's frens, too.

Welcome to The Banner Haus News, where you can find antique and vintage images posted daily, to help keep the work of long-ago artists alive, in circulation, and appreciated. Right-click to save them, then use on yr blogs, websites, cards and such.

The Banner Haus is also a place where I enjoy "holding forth" as the mood strikes me, bringing you all the news and musings of my strange little world. I'm just an Ol' Western Gal, suspiciously akin to my former alter ego, The Olde Dame, only dustier.

I go wandering through life like a little straw-hatted donkey, munching on weeds and sniffing on flowers and trying to stay off of the cactuses.

Catch my Twitter feed, if you like! I have it up here on my bloggie, too. I think Twitter turns out to be a fine way to interact.

Fer those without a Twitter account, they are free and easy to use. Now all of you other donkeys can mill around and whinny at each other and be nosey, without a lot of bloggie bother and etiquette and obligations. Try it, my pets. We'll all learn together. You go first.

Breaking News

Yesterday, while out on my favorite mount, Spokey Joe (which is an old girls wide-fender two-tone TURQUOISE-N-CREAM coaster-brake bike), I came across a horny toad SETTING IN THE STREET right in front of George W. Bush's childhood home here in Midland, Texas.

I don't know why a horny toad would be awake at this time of year. The temperature spiked up yesterday, possible confusing the creature. This is the second horny toad rescue in the same location, and a handtowel was used in both rescues, as I am a bit leery of handling the horny toads.  They DO shoot blood out of their eyes at you. Which I personally think wouldn't do either of us any good.

Old-Time Household Tip:
If you have that trailing ivy in yr home, and it gets dull or dusty, get yrself a piece of old washcloth. Put 1/4 cup milk and a 1/4 cup water together, put the cloth in and squeeze out until just damp. Then wipe the ivy leaves with it. Makes them glossy. No, yr house will not smell like milk, my suspicious pets.

Vintage Postcard Freebie:

Today, a digitally freshened antique postcard image. It is ready for digital or craft projects.

Wondering how to add wording to a graphic, without having to buy and master a program such as PhotoShop or Paint Shop Pro? There are several places on the Internet offering instant, online editing abilities. Photobucket and Picnik are two such places, and their basic versions are free. (Ol' Western Gal has no monetary connection with these places, and I primarily use Paint Shop Pro to alter, clean up, and create images.)

Right-click to save. Enjoy. I'm moseying on now, see you tomorrow God Willing and the Creek Don't Rise.