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Tuesday, December 31, 2013

What's in Your Future? Happiness, we Hope and Pray!

We celebrate the New Year by looking back
and by looking forward.

"Time keeps on slipping into the future," Chicago.
On the internet, io9 presents 18 predicted tech advances that came true in 2013. Even after knowing that we can now help the seriously injured and handicapped, the advances of cybernetics still amaze me.

My son works with carbon tubules, so knowing that nano-tech is so advanced as to produce computer circuits and power sources reassures me that he will have a good future in his chosen career field.

Listserve mentions 10 predictions that came true over the last 100 years. Some are amazing in their accuracy. The tablet computer, online newspapers and education, robots, and flying cars are a few examples. Another amazing fete is the prediction of Elena Sheppard of all winners of the Oscars of 2013.

Time to celebrate.
Here in Texas, that
means serving good food.
Close to home, I am sure you have checked your personal predictions and resolutions to see how you fared. Was 2013 all you hoped it would be? Will 2014 be a better year for you?

Perfect for upcoming
parties and visits!
What changes will you be making to your home this year? Be sure to come by Mertie's This and That to shop for those classic items that make a home comfortable.

Remember, our present and future are rooted in our past!

Mertie and I wish you all a Happy New Year and hope that time is good you. Despite all our problems and ongoing issues, 2014 promises much for us all.
What cheers a home better than potted plants? Or prepares the soul for spring than new flowers for the yard. Plants are available at Mertie's This and That. Also, now is the time to get outdoor decor: benches, signs and plant racks.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Get Last Minute Gifts and Decor

Have you run out of time to shop? There is so much to choose from at Mertie's This and That!

Remember, this resale shop only carries quality items, whether vintage, antique or slightly used.

Raggedy Ann and Andy dressed up for tea with friends.
Tea cup held by Ms. Bear is part of a dessert set for sale.
The tea pot with its sugar bowl and creamer are
also for sale. Each set is fine china.
All dolls and stuffed animals are for sale,
as are the special tables, chair, and hats.
This week and next is the Christmas Sale:

20% off these items: 
selected glassware

15% off

We wish you all a joyful and loving Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 2, 2013

Vintage Gifts and Wood Furniture

We've all done it. We found a treasure at a garage sale and paid a song for it.

I found such a treasure and paid about $1.25, if I remember correctly.
Say "Merry Christmas" with this wreath.
The man told me it was a nothing that his wife had. What I bought turned out to be a carnival glass candy dish by Indiana Glass before they were bought out. Today it sells on eBay for 10 times that or more, depending on the state of the recession.  It is one of my favorite treasures.

Being a new vendor at Merties, I have been collecting items to sell there. I recently put out vintage FTD vases dating from the 1970's to 2000, some Christmas decorations, and other items. Some are collectible treasures, some useful; all worthy items for the holiday season. And all are being sold for prices comparable (or less) to what you would pay online.

White Christmas Cactus
Featured at Mertie's This and That this week are so many varieties of items: from china to collectibles, from jewelry to purses, from fishing rods to knives, furniture from outdoor to indoor, and lots of plants.  You could furnish any room in your house from Mertie's This and That, and even make up the bed and fill up the kitchen.

Yes, there is Christmas Cactus 
and it is just beginning to bloom!

Looking for artificial flowers, leaves and fruit? Got that, too, along with the vases, bowls and baskets to put them in!
Telephone Chair

 Time to shop. These watches would be a perfect gift.

The furniture is all wood and sturdy.

What says home more than elegant ottomans?

Remember, be among the first to mention the blog to Mertie to get your free gift.
This vintage dresser and its bedstead is one of several  at Mertie's This and That

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Put on your Holiday Face

We all want to look good for the holidays. Our friend and Facialist, Cindy Heinze, offers a few tips for looking great and relaxing during this holiday season. Please note, these tips are especially for us gals living in south Texas near the coast.
Cindy' Butterfly © artant -
Cindy's Butterfly
© artant -

Cindy's Beauty Tips
for Winter Months

Old Man Winter will be here before we know it! It is time to pay a LOT of Attention to our Skin -- especially our face because it doesn't really get covered and protected during the winter months.

I would like to introduce some Beauty Tips that are most important during those windy and cold days that we get even here along the Texas coast.

  • #1--Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize
    • -- the body and most importantly the face!!
  • #2-Makeup Tip--use a foundation NOT just powder
    • -- powder only covers most of the time and has no facial benefits beyond that

I am a Facialist. I offer the European Facial, Mud Masks, Malibu Mask, Acne Treatments, Anti-Fatigue Treatments and the Express Facials.

Some facials range from 45 minutes to 1 hour. During this time I can use the steam machine and hot towels in ways that are marvelously relaxing for relax you, not to mention how wonderful your face will feel.

Of course, my first concern is improving your facial skin! Come by and let me explain the differences in the many kinds of facials I offer. One of them is sure to be just right for you.


Facials by CINDY
Masked Face © artant -
Located inside Magic Nails Salon
145 Oyster Creek Drive, Suite 1
Lake Jackson, Texas


11:00 am - 5:00 pm
or by appointment


(979) 297-9998
cell (281) 389-0721

Get these Make-up Brushes and Bag
Men's Fragrances. Shop now.


 Ready to Shop?

At Mertie's This and That you can get make-up brushes, men's colognes, ladies' make-up bags and more. Stop by to see these items.

But that is not all.  You can also get more gifts for men. Just in: a collection of knives that is sure to please the men in the family.
Knives at Mertie's This and That

And don't forget the sales event featuring crosses and wall hangings.

More Knives at Mertie's This and That

Read on for the list of all item categories on sale. 

On Sale Now

  • Kitchen Items (excludes electrical items) ...Reduced 30% 
  • Glassware (select items only) ...Reduced 20% 
  •  Candles ...Reduced 20% 
  • Pillows, Quilts, & Curtains ...Reduced 50% 
  • Books, with Cookbooks ...Reduced 50% 
  • Wall Hangings: Crosses & Pictures ...Reduced 10% 
  • Purses and Shoes ...Reduced 50% 
Hurry! These won't last long! Many have already sold.
There are a lot of new items in the store. 

As in the past, be sure to write a comment. Be sure to tell Mertie when you stop by that you read this blog. Be among the first to mention the blog and get a gift.

To see more items in the store, visit the photo album. Use the link in the side panel.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Eating Jack-O-Lantern Innards

All over Brazoria County, TX, there are pumpkins for sale. In Sweeny at the corner of Elm St. and E. 1st St. there is a Pumpkin Patch run by the First United Methodist Church with various sizes of
Have a picture taken at the Pumpkin Patch at Elm and 1st St, Sweeny, TX
 pumpkins and several areas for picture-taking. Sit the kids on a hay bale beside a scarecrow  and snap away with cell phone or camera. Brazoria, TX,  has one, too. I do not know where the others are.
Just a few of the bowls at
Mertie's this and That

Get a pumpkin and carve it out. Use the images on as patterns.

Cookies posted on
Instructbles to make with
children this Halloween
But wait, don't throw away all that nutritional goodness!
  • Roast those seeds. 
  • Turn those innards into soup
  • Serve the delectables in a bowl from Mertie's This and That.

For dessert, serve finger food, Halloween style! Have the kids cook up these sugar cookie horrors!

For feathers, hats, old shoes and other items for costumes, check out Mertie's This and That!


Saturday, October 19, 2013

Where Will you Put your Halloween Candy?

Do You know where your candy is?

What do these lampshades have
to do with Halloween? Read on
or make your own suggestions
in the comments.
I remember when Trick or Treat meant walking house to house in one's home neighborhood. By the time my children were going out on Halloween, parents were walking with their children. Then came the church and private parties to celebrate candy and costumes without having to walk increasingly dangerous streets.

Through it all, someone stayed home to man the candy dish for the few ghouls who showed up. Then people began using front lights as a sign that kids were welcome; lights off meant "No candy here."

Candy was passed out from paper bags, original candy bags or decorative bowls and baskets. I always appreciated those hosts that provided candy containers that suited the festive atmosphere of the night. The candy bowl often matched the costume of the person answering the door. This adult participation made the night so much more fun and memorable. I like to think the homeowner enjoyed our stopping by.

A pastel pot for a feminine candy dish

Time to Shop

Need a distinctive candy dish for your Halloween guests? Mertie's This and That has numerous items that can be re-purposed to hold candy. Add a folded-down bag or wax-paper lining--aluminum foil works well, too--and you will have a dish that suits the night and the theme of a costume.

Dressed up like Dances with the Stars, Barbie, or a Fairy-Tale Princess? Use one of these pastel, color-matched pots. After Halloween, just plant you favorite spring flowers in it. You can get your plants from Mertie's This and That, too.
A small garden cart for holding candy
dishes, plant pots, or coffee mugs.

This garden cart or that red table are perfect for holding your candy bowl. Other bowls or pots that are large enough to be Halloween candy dishes are plentiful, as are small tables.
A table to hold a candy dish for
Halloween or cookies for Santa

Maybe not useful as a small table, but
this wheelbarrow makes a distinctive candy dish.
Baskets work well to collect candy or organize the bags the children bring home. They work well as carriers for elven woodsmen and fairies, princesses, and Little Red Riding Hood...

Baskets for now and springtime
Shed some light on your doorway with this black-shaded lamp (below, right). You could make your own statement with those lampshades (above) that are just begging to be redesigned.

And look for over-sized shoes and hats for completing a costume, too.

Crystal lamp with a black fringed lampshade
Visit Mertie's This and That and let your imagination soar. Some sites to give you ideas are JunkMarket Style, and DIY Instructables.

Share your made-over Halloween favorites in the comments by Oct. 31, 2013. Be among the first 5 to mention this blog post to Mertie and receive a free gift.


Monday, October 7, 2013

Reclaim, Restyle, Re-purpose

china plate as picture frame
 China Plate used as Photo Frame by Valerie; Posted on Junk Market Style
Vintage Glass adds Elegance to a Desk

What do you do with those thrift shop finds?

In this era of high cost and wood particle-board furniture, many shoppers are turning to garage sales and thrift stores for quality, real wood furniture and older china designs. Even kitchen supplies and flatware can be had inexpensively.

Today I have some suggestions for re-purposing, some examples of refinished furniture, and some items just waiting to be reclaimed. I will also mention some useful links. And, lastly, I interviewed an artisan.

We have seen many old china pieces and glassware at craft shows, restyled into birdfeeders or Western mugs.  China salad plates and saucers can be used as picture frames; this idea is posted on Junk Market Style, a site where hobbyist and artisans share their ideas for reworking junk into beautiful, useful pieces of decor for the home and the yard. I posted this use of a beautiful china plate several years back.

You can also give your desk or telephone station an elegant look by corraling items in trays and cups. The vintage goblet is perfect for thumbtacks and paperclips, while the veggie tray is just the right size for pens and pencils. Trays of this sort keep the writing utensils from rolling onto the floor, too.

Need wood furniture to refinish? There are several pieces at Mertie's This and That just waiting to be transformed. There are pieces that have already been hand-painted if you prefer, as well as a few that were initially made that way. There are ceramic items just begging to be hand-painted.
painted folding chair at Mertie's This and That
Painted by hand or factory? Examine it at Mertie's.

hand-painted dresser at Mertie's This and That
Get This Hand-Painted Dresser at Mertie's

dresser and ceramic duck at Mertie's This and That
Refinish the Dresser; Paint the Duck

The sale mentioned in a previous posting is still ongoing, minus the many items that have been sold. Mertie went shopping, too, and has added some beautiful items to her stock.

 Interview with a Local Artisan

 Local to Brazoria, TX, that is.

For today's theme I interviewed a local hobbyist/artisan. He locates pieces being sold at garage and estate sales and reclaims them, as he says, "With a Texas Attitude." His wife proudly claims that he can see a promising piece in a pile of junk and transform it into a jewel. Take a look a some examples of his pieces.

Dresser Restyled and Reclaimed by Donn Correll of Texas Attitude
Let me lead you through some of his effort:
hand-made drawer pulls
Correll's Unique Hand-made Drawer Pulls
  • note the long dresser/buffet (under the western blankets). 
  • He hand-made the southwestern trim on the bottom,  
  • designed and made drawer pulls,
  • added sofa legs to the piece, 
  • added the rope-like trim, 
  • and topped it with the shelf, another of his designs.
 The result is fine!

A more conventional treatment was given to the refinished dresser below. Only new hardware and a glorious stain was added--once the piece had been cleaned up.
refinished dresser at Texas Attitude
Dresser Reclaimed and Refinished at Texas Attitude

He sells his pieces from his family store on FM 316. Look for the Texas Attitude sign.

While there check out the stone-studded steer head. I took one look and burst out laughing. THIS is right up there with the armadillo holding the Coors can one occasionally sees along the Texas roadside. Pure Attitude--Texan Style!
blue stone-studded steer skull with horns
Stone-studded Steer Skull at Tx Attitude

I knew right then that I would make this his icon. See it in the side panel? I am putting it on my website, too, if he lets me.  But, you know these Texans...

Which icon do you like best for Donn?

Texas Attitude Creative 1
Button Icon #1
Texas Attitude Creative 2
Button Icon #2

These two pictures could be used to identify links to the artisan Donn Correll. Which one do you think best represents his work? Or should I get my artist husband to design a third one? Of course, I could just copy his sign on the street. Comments, anyone?

We have a gift for you!

If you enjoyed this article, please tell Mertie. She has a gift certificate for the first 10 visitors to Mertie's This and That who mention having read her blog. Be sure to subscribe to keep up with the latest happenings.

Comments are welcome, too. As is sharing on your Facebook page. Be one of the first 10 to mention it to Mertie, stop by and get your gift! ~Valerie

Monday, September 23, 2013

Enjoy Succulents and Other Potted Plants

Hmmm, the weather's changing. I actually wanted to wear a raincoat this past Friday! And and wet. Soon it will be time to move succulents and other potted plants indoors for the winter.

Today we know that these plants help clean, humidify, and oxygenate the air. Yep, potted plants indoors during the winter months help clean up, moisturize, and freshen the air of your home. These plants will actually remove many indoor pollutants from the air. As Martha Stewart would say, "It's a good thing."

To keep your plants healthy during the winter indoors, place them near a sunny window or under a grow light. Water

[These are  some of the plants and their pots for sale at Mertie's.]
frequently, but allow the top inch of soil to dry out between watering. If you have limited space, try rotating your plants so each pot gets some exposure to light daily.

(c)2013 Coskrey Biz
Rearrange your knick knacks to make your plants an integral part of your home's decor this winter.

Mertie's This and That has potted succulents and other plants that are just waiting for a winter home. Won't you take one in? ~Valerie  

Note: I provided the 3 links to reference the usefulness of plants indoors.
Visit here to get more information on caring for potted plants indoors during the winter months.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Decorate with Quilts for a Comfortable Home

There is nothing cozier than snuggling under a quilt when a blanket would be just too much! Toss a small one across the back of a rocking chair or recliner. You can even hang a quilt on a wall for an interesting focal point. Quilts will help insulate an outer wall, much like the tapestries of old. Some  quilts are even like banners. A quilt will work to cover and insulate a window. Hang it behind the curtain or even use it as a curtain--just use heavier hardware and rods.

Quilts can be had at Mertie's This and That. In fact, they are currently on sale. Right now you can get quilts, lampshades, and curtains at 50% off. That's right, you can get those items that make a seating arrangement cozy; that make a guest room welcoming; that make a home comfortable.

Other Items on Sale Now at Mertie's This and That

During the End of Summer Sale you can find items throughout the store on sale from 10-50% off. In some cases, full categories of items are discounted. The images below show just some of the types of items you can get at these bargain prices.
Selected glassware is 20% off. 
  • Kitchen Items (excludes electrical items) ...Reduced 30%
  • Glassware (select items only) ...Reduced 20%
  • Candles ...Reduced 20%
  • Pillows, Quilts, & Curtains ...Reduced 50%
  • Books, with Cookbooks ...Reduced 50%
  • Wall Hangings: Crosses & Pictures ...Reduced 10%
  • Purses and Shoes ...Reduced 50%
Hurry! These won't last long! 
Perfect for Parties