My Next 6 Months

It has been 6 months since we moved back from England. When we moved to England I jumped into my life there as quickly as possible. I taught Sunday school and joined the board of the Parent Teacher Association (PTA) at the kids’ school. I knew that we were only there for a short time and I needed to make the most of our opportunity. I am so thankful for how involved I became, all of the experiences I had and the friends I made.

IMG_8242.JPG

When we moved back to Texas I knew it was a different kind of move. We are not planning on moving again any time soon. We are looking at putting down roots here in this area of Houston. We have had roots started in this area for almost 10 years now, we first moved to Texas when Addie was 2 and Ben was just 3 weeks old. We have lived here off and on through the last decade, through some of the busiest times for our young family and with varying levels of enthusiasm. This time as we came back to Texas I knew we were meant to be here and meant to be here for a while and that made me look at all of the opportunities to get involved and serve very differently.

Emily P. Freeman shared a quote on The Next Right Thing Podcast last week.

“You are in this time of the interim where everything seems withheld. The path you took to get here has washed out; the way forward is still concealed from you. You cannot lay claim to anything; In this place of dusk, your eyes are blurred; And there is no mirror.” — John O’Donohue, To Bless the Space Between Us

IMG_3026.JPG
I got to meet Emily P. at Nest Fest in North Carolina last year.

Just a few months ago I would have been able to claim this quote in a very personal way. Moving back from England and closing a door on our expat life made me question what I wanted to do next. I walked through our first 6 months back in Texas putting one foot in front of the other. I worked hard to get everyone settled in their new routines. With a husband working and starting graduate school and 4 children I had my hands full.

I set up at Marburger in the fall. I had a good show, but not a great show and I wasn’t sure what I was supposed to be doing. Having a home based side hustle is dangerous because you can take things really slow if you need to or want to. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to be an antique dealer or vintage vendor anymore. I have had to wrestle with the idea of what to do with my business, to see how much time I actually have to commit to my customers. I love interacting with my customers and I love talking about old things.

One thing I knew, was that I wanted to write more. I have always had a blog, but finding the inspiration and discipline to make posts happen has been where I always struggle. Then I saw that Hope*Writers was open again. Hope*Writers is a place for writers, or people that want to call themselves writers, can go for education, support and a good kick in the pants. I joined Hope*Writers and I started learning. I started writing. I have written more in the  last months since joining H*W than I have since college. I have a lot of stories about my treasures and treasure hunting that I never knew. It turns out I can write as much as I talk about my treasures.

fullsizeoutput_c5a
My headshot for the Houston Mom’s Blog website. photo credit Eighty Two Photography

I started looking for more opportunities to make new friends and write more. I submitted to an open call to be a contributor for Houston Mom’s Blog. I was thrilled and slightly terrified to be selected as one of their 2019 contributors. This is a fantastic opportunity to write with a deadline and get to know a beautiful group of ladies. My first post will be going live some time this month. There are so many fantastic writers and a ton of information for Mommas in the Houston area.

 

Getting Ready for 2019

I am so excited to see where Brocante Treasures goes in the coming year. Right now I am working on my next 6 months. My Etsy shop is open and I am working on adding items every week. You can see what I have available now here. If there is anything you would like to see please feel free to reach out.

Antique Week is coming soon to Round Top, Texas. Antique Week (it’s actually 3 weeks) is one of my absolute favorite times. I work harder during this time than any other, but I love it all. I get to share my treasures, meet customers and visit with old friends. If you are coming please stop by and say hi! You will be able to find me in Tent A at Marburger Farm in Round Top, Tx from April 2-6.

IMG_2507
Brocante Treasures – Fall 2018 at Marburger Farm

You will also find me in Dallas April 26-27 at the Flea Style show. I got to visit the Flea Style store in Dallas over Christmas and it was just as amazing as I thought it would be. Brittany Cobb has created such an inspiring brand, the podcast is a must listen.

i1ChribfSQqDJxPiJzf%Pw
Good Things Happen Here – Flea Style, Deep Ellum, Dallas, TX

 

Happy Monday Everyone!

Repletion – My Word of the Year

Repletion – My Word of the Year

Have you joined the Word of the Year tradition? This is my third year to enjoy this literary hunt. I know everyone has a different take on how they choose their word. I wish I had a better story about how my words are chosen, but I generally just make lists, nothing new for me. I make lists of words that I find inspiring or challenging. I will admit that part of my goal with this search is to select a word that not everyone is going to have. I think that is part of the antique dealer in me, always looking for the most rare and unusual thing I can find. Just look at this loot shoot from our time in England. This was one morning of shopping at one of my favorite places on earth!

IMG_0887

My first year that I remember picking a word and keeping it close was HUMILITY. Have you ever heard the saying not to ask God for patience because he will give you opportunities to practice? The same goes for humility. There were aspects of my life that I had no idea needed so much work, but they did. I was surprised how many times this word showed up in my life that year. This word still comes to me in not so comfortable, but definitely growth inducing, ways.

Humility 2017
design by @b_h_handmade

 

Last year I chose CAPACITY. It is not your typical word of the year word, but I knew this was my word. I wasn’t even sure what application it would have in my life. Looking back now I can see that last year was a year of living and working at near maximum capacity. We traveled, we spent time with friends, we moved (again), we reestablished our life here in Texas, my husband started grad school, and I still have four kids. I felt through the whole year that I was reaching my capacity. Being aware of this word helped me to respect my limits and not try to exceed my capacity when things got crazy.

Capacity 2018

This year I have chosen the word REPLETION. I didn’t know this word, I found it on a synonym list I was looking through for another word.

Repletion: the condition of being abundantly supplied or filled; fullness.

At the end of Psalm 23:5 it says ‘my cup overflows’. I love the idea that I am abundantly supplied, I am overflowing. I have more than I could have hoped for in my life, including my family, friends, memories, experiences, and antique plates.  I feel like my head and my heart are full of beautifully wrapped packages of my experiences and lessons, and now I am ready to start writing them out for other people to enjoy and learn from.

fullsizeoutput_fcee

Going back to the box of delicious antique and vintage treasures at the top of the post, I look at that box and I think of Jon and the kids coming with me to the market and helping me carry things. My daughter’s developing eye at antique and vintage markets, that girl can spot a deal. I think of all the things I learned as I researched the pieces in the box. I think of the dealers and fellow shoppers that became friends as I traveled to markets around England. I can still feel the crisp chill that accompanied most mornings waiting for the gates to open. The sheep on the hill in the background, my rickety red rolling trolley (otherwise known as a cart here in America), and the pound coins jingling in my pocket are precious memories. Now these treasures grace our home or my shop or have been bestowed as gifts and they give me words. If you have talked to me you know the transition from England back to Texas has not been an easy one, but it is the path that God has clearly laid out for our family. Now it is my time to look for that next step here in Texas. The next person to love on, the next right thing.

 

Do you have a word? Do you have a process for choosing your word? Does anyone else use synonym.com? Here’s to the first full week of the new year and blog publishing goals being met. See you next week.

DSC08316

My Tea Cup Tree

I love tea cups. I grew up with a Mum that drinks tea at least twice a day, hot tea with whole milk of course.

While I lived in France and England I started collecting old china. I collected plates and platters, bowls and every kind of vintage china, but especially; tea cups. I adore a mismatch of colors, styles, patterns, and even condition. I have gathered a diverse group of tea cups and I have had fun finding ways to display their beauty. This picture is my absolute most popular photo on Instagram.

IMG_0928

The last shot of my tea cups in England. This was our property at The Dower House, in England. This picture holds so many happy memories for my treasure hunting.

IMG_9299

Last Christmas I decided to try something new for me. My shabby little black tree that I found at a boot sale was the perfect back drop. With the top hat perched on top this became my Mad Hatter Tea Party Tree. This spot in our conservatory in the Dower House in England made me so incredibly happy. The tree was safe and very visible.

This year we are back in Texas and I couldn’t find my top hat, so this estate sale cowboy hat came to the rescue. My daughter left her boots sitting by the tree, a danger of the tree being in our very high traffic entry way. When I saw the hat and boots this tree instantly became my Whiskey in a Tea Cup Tree. So many delicate tea cups gathered from around the world capped off with a classic symbol of Texas seemed just right this year.

We are still adjusting to our life back here in Texas. The kids are enjoying school, we have spent more time with family than we were able to in England, but every once in a while a memory hits and we all get a little homesick for a country that isn’t our home. England will always hold a piece of our hearts. I love that the tea cups are gorgeous reminders of France and England and Texas as I continue to add to one of my favorite Christmas decorations.

To recreate this look I recommend gathering as many tea cups as you can. I have over 40 tea cups on this tree. I would use a smaller scale tree, the black tree is sitting on a small trunk to give it height. Find a fun hat and a coordinating base. The ironstone with the black tree felt like the snow that we got to enjoy in England. The vintage tree skirt was a special find and adds even more color to our entry way here in Texas. There are so many amazing baskets and buckets that are perfect for a quirky little tree.

I hope you all have a very Merry Little Christmas.  See you next year!

The Etsy Shop is Opening

If you have ever wondered about what kind of antiques I sell or wanted a treasure for yourself  now is your chance!

My Etsy shop is open here BrocanteTreasuresTX, until Tuesday evening.  The items are available for free shipping in the US only.

8201EBA5-E37B-446C-AD39-7D96D58D44FF

1920’s, 1940’s and 1950’s magazines.

Antique books, including Bibles from 1916 and 1949. The Lamplighter is from 1854.

DSC_0634

Antiques and vintage items are great for gift giving, hostess gifts and when you have to buy your own gift.

Moving to France and Maternity Photos: A Memory

Don’t worry, this is not an announcement post. These pictures are from 2013, we were newly moved to Paris and I was expecting baby number 4. With our latest move back to Texas I have been reminiscing over our lives overseas and reliving some of our more difficult moves.

I promise there will be more pictures and stories about beautiful old things here.  Our family’s adventures are so closely connected to my antique adventures I feel the need to celebrate both here.

We made the move from Oslo, Norway to Paris, France when I was 7 months pregnant with Malachi (baby number four). We were in temporary housing for 3 weeks after we arrived in Paris. I was so worried about getting hugely pregnant, which I did, that I wanted maternity pictures taken as soon as possible. This is where I googled “english speaking photographer in Paris”. I looked through a few websites until I found Katie Donnelly Photography. I emailed Katie and we set a date for my maternity shoot.

I joke that part of the reason we had baby number 4 was pinterest. It’s not as bad as it sounds, I promise. Our first three children came along before Pinterest or Instagram were really a thing. I remember seeing amazing maternity photos, but we never had the means to get those photos taken. Having three babies in 3 1/2 years and all of the life changes we had packed into those years hadn’t left room for fancy belly shots.

Once Katie and I settled on a day I got my hair cut. My stylist didn’t speak any English, but I walked away happy. A tiny miracle that I am so thankful for. I had to buy clothes and shoes for everyone as most of our things were still on their way to us from Norway.

It was August in Paris when these were taken and it was warm, but not as unbearable as it had been. The one thing about August in Paris is that most of the Parisians have gone somewhere else! We were able to park on the street not far from the Eiffel Tower (August is a great time to practice driving in the city with the lowered population).

We walked to this park under the Eiffel Tower and met Katie and Pyk. We chatted and had these amazing photos taken. We also made friends. Katie is an insanely talented photographer and a great friend. It has been such a blessing to see her business grow and her happiness in life. Katie is still living and working in Paris. I highly recommend booking a session with her if you are in Paris. Check out her work here.

 

080313_hilton-amy-family-portraits_071-Edit

Addison was 6, Bennett was 4 and Garrett was 2 1/2 here in these photos. Our little world travelers handled moving from Houston to Oslo to Paris with amazing ease080313_hilton-amy-family-portraits_118-EditBW

I adore these little faces. I was probably not as patient on the day these photos were taken as I should have been. I try not to remember that, just how thankful I am to have these memories. 080313_hilton-amy-family-portraits_132-Edit

Oh, you know, just the Eiffel Tower in the background. Ha!

080313_hilton-amy-family-portraits_149-Edit-2BW

 

Can you spot my Lisa Leonard Necklace? I love having the names of the people I love with me. I had to get a new necklace after Malachi was born, I was a good customer for a while, ordering a new necklace every couple of years.

080313_hilton-amy-family-portraits_173-Edit

Here is proof that I was smart to get the maternity photos in as soon as I could. Malachi was the only baby to come after his due date and my biggest baby. Having a baby in a foreign country is a different post entirely.  This picture under the Eiffel Tower holds so many expat memories for us. We had moved into our house in Suresnes, but we did not have the gas turned on yet so we had no hot water. We made our way to the area near the Eiffel Tower and tried to find something to eat. We ended up at Lebanese restaurant. The food was amazing, they had wifi and they gave me baklava. Giving a pregnant woman a free dessert is a very quick way to her heart. We took this picture on the walk back to the car.

fullsizeoutput_f55b

 

 

We hit the ground running with a long list of places we wanted to see as a family. This is Chateau Fontainebleau, and I remember painfully little from this visit. DSC_0993

Malachi had to be induced, we made it to the hospital and then decided to come back the next day after we had checked on a few things with our insurance. I love these belly shots from my ‘giant baby’.

I had always loved old things, but when I moved to France I found my true passion for antiques and history. All of my antiquing and exploring was done with my family in tow and I wouldn’t have had it any other way. My family did not go on every shopping trip with me, but I did waddle my way through Paris markets. We took family trips to brocantes and chateaux. We explored as a family and grew together. Paris is where our family felt complete with the addition of Malachi. Having him in France was my biggest adventure.

 

Marburger Farm Fall 2018

You might have noticed I have been busy out at Antique Week in Round Top, Texas. I was a vendor at Marburger Farm Antique Show. This was my third time selling at Marburger, but the energy and excitement never gets old. Here are a few photos of the treasures I shared.

fullsizeoutput_bf78fullsizeoutput_bf73fullsizeoutput_bf70

I know this seems like a random picture. That is my sister helping a customer and the woman in the white dress just happens to be Camila Alves Mcconaughey, Matthew Mcconaughey’s wife. She made the trip with 2 lucky fans. Camila runs Women of Today, an online space to encourage women. I got the chance to meet Camila and her guests, and it was a fun moment during an exciting opening day. NBu%PvwJRmOhIuheCgayPgzr%bL4peQQGtEzYgeeTCDwp49Sa4s6RimGp1+9grIKYQJR8a0iuNSo6hODvMkqcGMA

These tones are antique and vintage and perfect for fall. I love the mix of neutrals, ages, and textures that create an interesting mix. fullsizeoutput_bf75

English tea set and old French books, so much to love.fullsizeoutput_bfa4

Antique military mementos are so special, WWI and WII, French and English, I love it all!fullsizeoutput_bf7e

My sweet girl, Addison, came to help for a bit. I love her and how much she already loves vintage.

My amazing TX shirt is from Ramble and Company.  Addison is rocking her vintage skirt from France. She makes my momma heart so proud.

EgWsvyZLQ2G1OmQZGqrRgw

Here is my whole crew. I am so thankful the boys all got to see what I do. My husband is a trooper, he got them lunch, visited a few dealer friends, and my boys got to give me a hug. I needed those sweet little hugs. Just like that the whirling crazy of my everyday life was gone. XQDoda%6SUyc5iA%%ap4kQNBu%PvwJRmOhIuheCgayPg2kQDZtfYTFS0JnbJGZ4kCg Natalie Lange, (@natalieclange) an amazingly talented photography and the sweetest friend, stopped by and snapped a few photos while we chatted. The friends I get to visit with are one of my favorite parts of Antique Week.

IMG_2505
Photo by Natalie Lange
IMG_2506
Photo by Natalie Lange
IMG_2507
Photo by Natalie Lange

Do you love enamelware? I sure do and this rainbow display was a colorful spot on hazy mornings in the field.JG2YYbADQ1qr8CvOdUBTaw

 

rJdP8fSQREWE0qy3HjEbTg

I couldn’t have done any of this without my amazing sister, Laura (@madam_bohemian). Laura is an incredibly talented hair stylist in Florida. I love that she gets to come and help me make magic at Marburger. Oh, and pie. Royers Pie Haven (@royerspiehaven) needs to be on your itinerary if you make it to Round Top. They are located right on Henkle Square and they are amazing! Strawberry Rhubarb is my personal favorite, but the Blueberry Lemon and the Junkberry will both do in a pinch. BcbitZcuSUe7eaigkB4pKw

Thanks for walking through Antique Week with Brocante Treasures.

fullsizeoutput_bf7d

I will be opening up my Etsy Shop, BrocanteTreasuresTX, soon. Follow here or on Instagram for first dibs on all the amazing treasures. If there is anything special you would like to see listed please feel free to get in touch.

#HappyHiltonHouse

If you follow me on Instagram at @LoveVintageWillTravel or @BrocanteTreasures then you have probably seen most of these photos. We have been in our house almost 2 months now. We were very fortunate to get our shipment from storage the day after we closed. That meant we had a table and chairs, beds, and basic cooking and dining utensils.

Our shipment from England moved very quickly and we had the rest of our things less than a month after moving in. Within a week of getting our second shipment I had 95% of the boxes unpacked. Can I tell you we have a lot of stuff? I didn’t realize just how efficient I had been in gathering treasures until I was starting down 30 boxes of china in the dining room alone.

I have been able to get our house mostly settled, but I did have a few good reasons. I wanted the kids as settled as possible before they started school. Jon needed the office squared away so he can do his classes each week. I have an event coming up in October, setting up at Marburger Farm during Texas Antique Week in Round Top, TX. I do have quite a bit of practice unpacking and getting us all settled.

I love how the house is turning out, but I do have plans to move a few things around already. Musical furniture is one of my favorite games. For now I am working on getting pictures hung on the walls and all the books we have sorted around the house. I will have more pictures to come as we continue to get settled.

I try to always tag photos of our house with #HappyHiltonHouse if you are interested in seeing what I am doing with our latest home. Our last house in England was #ourdowerhouse if you are interested at all.