Tuesday, April 6, 2010


Aunt Sadie's has just released two new candles for your enjoyment.  Our new Bacon and Bread Candles are awesome!!  Now you can have the scent of bacon without the calories, fat or cholesterol!!  Visit our website at http://www.auntsadiesonline.com/ anytime in the month of April and use the word "bacon" as the coupon code at check out and receive 20% off any candles purchased.  ENJOY!!

Friday, March 5, 2010

The Very Talented Jane Jenni

I thought my readers might like to know about the melamine plates and cups and ceramic mugs manufactured by Aunt Sadie's good friend Jane Jenni.  Jane is a Minnesota gal and we were fortunate to meet her through our friend Ellie Garber, a sales representative in the gift industry in New England.  Jane has a wonderfully fun sense of design and she puts her images on all sorts of things.  Of course we carry Jane's merchandise at Aunt Sadie's, but her products can be found in specialty gift stores throughout the US.
I think the Funky Monkey image is my absolute favorite!  This is available on a 9" melamine plate, melamine cup or ceramic mug.  We retail the plates for $9.00 in our store and these are one of our hottest selling items.  You can see all of Jane's designs on her website at http://www.janejenni.com/ .  We have people who come into the store regularly to pick up new designs as they have an entire kitchen wall filled with Jane's plates.

But the fun doesn't end with just plates!!  There are also numerous designs that appear on melamine cups as well.  Most of the designs have both a matching plate and cup.  What great fun for kids of all ages!
And there's even more fun!  Jane Jenni Ceramic mugs.  Available in most designs, these are sturdy and hefty mugs that can withstand the sometimes careless hands of youth!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Seth Steward Model Canoe Paddles

I've been a bit lax in posting to the blog of late.  January is a tough month because I'm on the road for most of it at the Atlanta and New York Gift Shows.  But, I'm home now, recovered and back in full swing!  I've posted about Cherry Gallery (http://www.cherrygallery.com/) before, but couldn't resist telling you about these amazingly wonderful model canoe paddles for sale on their website currently.  Trust me, if I had a spare $5,600 this month they'd be mine and I wouldn't be telling you about them!!  The images are stunning and these padels are so rare.  Surely these are an amazing investment.  Here's the details: 
Seth Steward Model Canoe Paddles

This is a pair of model canoe paddles made and painted by renowned Maine artist Seth W. Steward (1844-1927) of Monson. One paddle is decorated with a painting of a brook trout chasing a fly on the blade and a canoe on the handle. The other has a painting of a moose on the blade and a rifle on the handle. These are the longest Steward model paddles that we've seen. Dated 1901  5.5" w, 45" long

Monday, January 18, 2010

Atlanta, The Belle Of The South!

Having just gotten back from the Atlanta Gift Show, I'm reminded that Atlanta is one of my all-time favorite cities outside of Boston.  Despite the cold spell during this trip, I still got to visit all my favorite stores, restaurants and hang outs that make my semi-annual trip to Atlanta special.  So, I thought I'd share with you some of my favorite spots in Atlanta so if you're going there anytime soon you'll have some fun things to check out.

Hands down, the best place to stay in Atlanta is The Gaslight Inn located in the Virginia Highlands section of the city on St. Charles Avenue NE.  It's one of the nicest, cleanest, stylish and friendly B&B's I've ever been to.  I've been staying there for over 6 years for almost 2 weeks every 6 months.  The Inn is comprised for 3 buildings:  The Main House, The Carriage House behind the Main House and a lovely building with 3 suites located directly across the street.  The owners, Mark and Emory are so committed to the B&B that they actually live in a beautiful home across the street from the Inn as well.  The morning breakfast is one of the best, cookies in the afternoon, always wine, soda and juice available in the Main House, some rooms with fireplaces and jacuzzi tubs and even a suite with a full kitchen and washer dryer. 

My home away from home is always the St. Charles Suite in the house across the street.  The furnishings are delightfully southern and the bathroom is about as big as the Atlanta Hartsfield Airport!!!  It's a very popular Inn and it's always good to reserve well in advance because it has a very loyal following.  Check them out at http://www.gaslightinn.com/ and enjoy your stay. 

Atlanta has some wonderful restaurants, a few stand out as must visits during your stay.  One of my all-time favorites is The Colonnade on Cheshire Bridge Road.  The clientelle is nicknamed "gays and greys" because there are always a room full of gay men (of all ages) and some fabulous "blue haired" ladies!!  It's so popular that it has a regular set of followers and although I'm only there every 6 months, I always seem the same cast of characters!  The Colonnade was founded in 1927.  The restaurant moved to its present location in 1962 and has been owned by the Jones' family since 1979.  Adding to its charm is the fact that it's located next to a somewhat seedy motel, which in it's hayday was probably one of the hot Atlanta motels! 

The menu is amazing...some of just about every type of food you'd want to eat and the best Southern Fried Chicken in the city.  Every entree comes with 2 sides and there are over 30 to choose from, including tomato aspick, collard greens, pole beans and "bean of the day".  A couple words of warning...they only take cash (there is a cash machine located in the lobby), they don't take reservations and the wait can be 45 minutes to an hour on Friday and Saturday nights and the drinks are POTENT!!  Plan to go..you'll have a great time!

Another of my favorite restuarants is Ecco.  It's part of the Fifth Group and they also own South City Kitchen, La Tavola (see below) and a great Mexico restaurant on Highland Avenue.  Ecco is fine dining at it's best, but also has a great semi-circle bar to dine and drink at.  If you go, be sure to ask if Eric is behind the bar and tell him I sent you...he's awesome!  Oh, and free valet parking right behind the restaurant.

La Tavola is located just off Highland Avenue in Virginia Highlands.  They have an extensive wine selection and some of the best comfort food you'll find in Atlanta. Free valet parking across the street.  It's a small restaurant and a bit cramped, but it's well worth it to wait if you have to.

A group fo 12 of us dined at Al Fredo's on Cheshire Bridge Road during this trip (just down the street from The Colonnade).  Italian dining does not get any more authentic!!  The restaurant has been in business since 1974 and you'd swear you were on the set of a restaurant in Little Italy (or The Godfather!).  Pasta of your choice comes with every entree.  Free parking adjacent to the restaurant and they do take reservations.  Frequently packed so call ahead for a reservation. 

As far as shopping goes, a must stop is Boy Next Door for great men's clothing.  I always find brands there that I don't see any place else. 
They have an extensive selection of bathing suits....from

skimpy to trunk style.  A great selection of t-shirts and jeans and there's a great 50% off section that's chock full of goodies every day of the year.

If you're looking for antiques, a great shop is Antiques and Beyond.  It's Atlanta's largest shop and filled with almost every style and era of antiques.  Heavy emphasis on furniture, but lots of great smalls, jewelry, china and fun stuff.  I've been going for years and always find something that I can't live without!

Outwrite Bookstore is one of the very few gay-oriented bookstores remaining in the country.  They're located at the corner of Piedmont and 10th Street in the Ansley area of town.  They have a great selection of books, calendars, magazines and some gift items.  They also have a great little coffee cafe and an area to sit and relax or hop on the computer using their free wifi.  Independent bookstores like Outwrite need our support.  Whether you're gay or straight, you're sure to find great best sellers and top reads.  Check out the staff selections that appear throughout the store.
I could write a ton more about Atlanta, but don't want to keep you reading all day long!!  Feel free to contact me for other suggestions and fun places to visit.  The Aquarium is an absolute must see!!  It's one of the most amazing I've seen.  I haven't yet been to the World of Coke, but a friend works for Coca Cola and he says it's filled with wonderful history and a chance to taste Coke drinks from around the world.  If you go, have a wonderful trip and enjoy!

Friday, January 15, 2010

Scott's Antique Market - Atlanta

I've been away from blogging for a couple weeks because I've been at the Atlanta Gift Show.  I'll have a report on that show shortly, but wanted to share with you my visit to Scott's Antique Market just south of Atlanta.  Scott's could call itself the "Brimfield of the South" if they were so inclined.  Held the 2nd weekend of every month in 2 massive buildings, you'll find anything and everything at Scott's.  When the weather is nice, there are also a host of outdoor exhibitors who often have the unknown treasures that you might not find indoors.  I was impressed with the wide variety of merchandise in all categories.  You wouldn't expect to find an entire booth of cabin and camp antiques in Atlanta, but Linda Davidson from North Carolina exhibits at Scott's and her booth is always filled with some of the nicest Adirondack, Hickory, Camp and Cabin antiques you'll find.  Linda is also a featured exhibitor at the annual Adirondack Museum Show held in Blue Mountain, NY in September. 

The dealer at the right was too busy reading the paper to take note of us checking out his booth, but he did have an excellent range of cabin, camp and sporting items.  Scott's officially opens every second weekend of the month on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.  They don't advertise that you can attend on Thursday when the dealers are setting up, but you can and that's the time to go for the good buys.  We arrived at about 9:30 am which was good...maybe a bit too early as many of the exhibitors were just unloading their trucks.  The facility makes it very easy for dealers as you can drive your truck (no matter how large) into the arena, unload and then go park outside.  The admission is $5.00/person which is well worth it.  I always try to catch the show in January and July when we're in Atlanta for the gift show and I've always managed to find good buys to bring back to New England.

Like Brimfield, you'll see just about everything at Scott's.  This advertising cowboy boot had to be 20+ feet tall.  For more information go to http://www.scottantiquemarket.com/.  Happy Shopping!!

Please tell your friends to become followers of my blog.  I've got some great entries coming up, including my top 10 favorite stores to visit in the US. 

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Rocca Boston...YUM!

Anyone who knows me well knows that I'm a big fan of dining out.  I moved into my current home about 18 months ago and have yet to turn on the oven!  I did buy myself a slow cooker with the intent on spending a couple evenings at home each week during the winter months and "nesting".  I have a few favorite spots in Boston, Atlanta and New York.  My most favorite in Boston is Rocca Kitchen & Bar.  http://www.roccaboston.com/.  This is one of Michela Larson's restaurants and she certainly knows how to design a menu.  The menu is based on food from Italy's small Liguria region, but the menu is quite diverse.  I've had just about every dish on the menu multiple times.  For casual dining I'm a big fan of the Rocca Burger.  It comes with just about everything imaginable on it (even bacon!), but you can also dress it down a bit.  It comes with a healthy serving of fries or dine more sensibly and pair it with a nice salad.  I'm also a huge fan of the Spaghetti Poveri (or as I call it, Poverty Spaghetti!).  But there is nothing "poverty" about it.  Paired with a salad it makes a great evening meal.  The Short Ribs are also tasty.  The bar staff is great.  I'm a big fan of Rob on Tuesday and Wednesday nights (also at Stella on Friday and Saturday nights) and Ean on Monday and Friday nights.  Colleen, who usually is a wait person in the upstairs diningroom is a fun Sunday night bartender.  Speaking of Stella, http://www.bostonstella.com/, this restaurant continues to be one of the hottest places to dine in Boston.  It's been open for a number of years and usually you'd expect a restaurant to slide a bit or need to reinvent itself after a long period of time, but not Stella.  Whether it's Monday or Saturday night, the restaurant is packed, as is the bar.  The bar staff has been there for many years and it's one of Boston's best bar scenes.  Stella is open late night as well and they have a great function room that is open on Friday and Saturday nights as additional restuarant seating and another bar (where you'll find Rob).  Another Boston favorite is Union Bar & Grill , http://www.unionrestaurant.com/, on Washington Street in the South End.  Before Rocca, it was my "go-to" restaurant).  As you can see, I like to support the local restuarants in my neighborhood.  It's worth going just to get the corn bread that comes before the meal.  I still think it's one of Boston's best menus.  Co-owner Jeff Gates is also one of the most supportive restuarant owners in the city, always willing to help out a local charity.  Union is part of the Aquitaine Restaurant Group which also owns Gaslight, Aquitaine and Metropolis in the South End and a couple other restaurants outside the city.  I could write a book about the various restuarants and dining experiences in Boston, but I thought I'd highlight 3 of my favorites.  New restaurants are opening all the time, but more times than not, these new restaurants disappoint and need time to get their feet wet (Post 390, Banq - which is now called Ginger Park, Bin 26).  Oh, both Rocca and Gaslight have free parking in a lot adjacent to the restaurant.  Happy Dining!

Monday, December 28, 2009

Great Time To Buy Antiques

Hope everyone had a great Holiday!  I was up in Vermont visiting my family and got to browse through my mom's antique shop for fun and funky stuff to put into my booth at the Rhode Island Antique Mall.  Actually heading down tomorrow (12/29) to rearrange and add in about 30 new and estate fresh items.  I bought this awesome 50's Tobacadoir sign at an auction recently in Massachusetts.  Auctioneer Arthur Crisafelli http://www.aacauctions.com/.  has some great Monday night sales in Medford, MA.  This sign came directly from an estate attic with some of the most wonderful things I've seen sold at an auction in recent years.  So many of the items were rare and in pristine condition.  I bought another sign that was likely done by the same maker for a Habadashery store and some of the most wonderful smalls.  This is a great time to hit auctions and shop antique stores because we're through the holidays and a lot of dealers run specials during January to clear out merchandise and get cash for the start of the new antique season.  The start of the season varies depending on what part of the country you're in.  For us in New England, the adopted official start date is the Brimfield Flea Markets that happen the second week of May.  I know many of the dealers at the RI Antiques Mall will also be doing January sales.  Those sales vary by booth in both duration and amount, but you can usually count on 15 - 25% off at least.  It's also a great time to make an offer for something that you want.  Dealers are most willing to negotiate on pricing during the first couple months of the year because they want cash to invest in new stuff that will start coming up at auctions, shows and shops.  I'm putting in a rare and wonderful bakelite dice bottle opener into my booth tomorrow as well  as this very rare bakelite dice cage that must have been used for a game.  The green base and gold and red post are all bakelite and in 40+ years of antiquing I've never seen one like it.  This came from that same estate auction and is so fresh to the market.  From my mom's shop I got 3 of the cutest pairs of kids cowboy boots in their original boxes.  It looks like these boots were worn once or twice and then put right back into the box.  At $35 each, they're a steal!  I picked up another 15 items that came directly from a picker who still gets into old homes.  I was searching auction websites recently and noticed that Archie and Josh Steenburgh, http://www.steenburgh.com/ have a great sale coming on up January 7th at Alumni Hall in Haverhill, NH.  Archie and Josh usually put their best sales in Alumni Hall so you know the stuff will be good.  I actually bought my first antique from George Clement who was an old time auctioneer in the Haverhill area and Archie started as an apprentice under him.  Oh, the sales they used to have!!!  George hooked up often with a guy named Harley Kaiser from Wells River, Vt. and they had some of the most amazing sales you'll ever want to see at the town hall in Wells River.  If we only knew then what we know now we would have bought everything sold and held onto it!  I remember once buying an awesome ladder back chair with original seat and paint and one of the fanciest finial detailing.  We paid $42.50 and the crowd was gasping because it was such a high price.  That chair still sits in my parents house in Vermont. 

So, check out those shops, auctions and shows in the next few weeks and I can assure you you'll come up with some reasonably priced treasures.  Happy shopping!