I won! I won! I really won!!

to 10px; WIDTH: 355px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 400px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/SbxBPF37bgI/AAAAAAAACxU/b9SN9bXAK6I/s400/cat+on+gerbil.jpg” border=”0″ /> I won! I won! I really won!

top:2px;padding-right:5px;font-family:times;”>The last time I won something I was in 3rd grade. At the end of the school year my teacher gave away the class gerbil. Weeks prior to the grand drawing, Mrs. Garretson sent home Parental Consent Forms for the parents to sign, giving their young ones permission to enter the competition. My mother neatly signed her name on my “chance to win” slip saying discretely to my father, “She’ll never win. What’s the harm in letting her enter the drawing?”

Mom ate those words on the last day of school before summer vacation when I carried my gerbil (complete with cage and running ball) out to greet her at the car. Sadly, however, a few days later my cat, Princess Elizabeth, ate the gerbil when a traveling evangelist visited our home. You might wonder about the correlation between a missionary and the cat eating the gerbil, but this is a key element in the story. The evangelist had brought with them not only a stack of Bibles but also their child (whom they couldn’t find a babysitter for). My mother later described “said child” as “The Holy Terror”.

“The Holy Terror” wrecked havoc in the living room while mom and the missionary were having an intense conversation about God. So my mom, my dear old mom, sent “The Holy Terror” to my bedroom to play. All was going fine until “The Holy Terror” decided that my newest pet needed to meet my cat. The rest is, as they say, history. Since the cat ate my gerbil I haven’t won another prize.

to 10px; WIDTH: 320px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 125px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/SbxBb2BzUbI/AAAAAAAACx8/q8sbiWAmvrU/s320/girlville.bmp” border=”0″ />
Thus, imagine my surprise when Kristie, the blogger behind Girlville (aka, My Craft Closet), did a “Birds of Change Drawing” and I was the grand prize winner! She notified me just as I was about to move from Amsterdam to Berlin and the package, which arrived a week or two later, was the first package I received at my new home in Germany! Nothing makes me happier than a package in the mail! I’d like to give a special thank you to Kristie at Girlville!

to 10px; WIDTH: 320px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 240px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/SbxBbr-O3TI/AAAAAAAACxk/w88u3JScXzM/s320/DSC04441.JPG” border=”0″ />to 10px; WIDTH: 320px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 258px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/SbxBbmhVr_I/AAAAAAAACxs/YKEKTCkMn1Y/s320/DSC04442.JPG” border=”0″ />to 10px; WIDTH: 320px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 240px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/SbxBbdL2OuI/AAAAAAAACxc/OMVc7MQzinc/s320/DSC04384.JPG” border=”0″ />Diva Readers, I encourage you to check out the pondering of “an over 30-something with a husband, 4 cats and a tendency towards unfinished projects…” She loves reading, cooking, knitting, sewing, painting, needlepoint(ing), playing with her 4 kitties (one of whom needs liposuction), baking, watching TV, refinishing furniture and making lists of things that she’s started doing but not yet finished!

Now – I suspect you’re a little jealous that I’ve got a birdie and you don’t…. if I were “The Holy Terror” I might stick out my tongue and say “Nanny, nanny, boo-boo – I have a birdie and you don’t!” – however, I’m simply not that kind of girl. I’m a nice diva and I play well with others (although I do occasionally run with scissors) – thus I’m going to let you in on a little secret! You too can own a birdie!

to 10px; WIDTH: 320px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 42px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_kcTb8DnPVW4/SbxBbqYveSI/AAAAAAAACx0/Y58FSAhxBqs/s320/fait+pour+vous.jpg” border=”0″ />
Kristie not only blogs and crafts and blogs about crafting, she also has a fabulous Etsy Store called Fait Pour Vous (Made For You) where she sells her hand-made creations. She does limited edition and custom orders. You can shop by theme (St Patrick’s Day or Wine & Things, etc), paintings or merely items on sale. When you stop by to visit her, do make sure you tell her “A Little Birdie Sent You!”


Until next time,

The Antiques Diva™

(Photo at right taken by The Diva while her husband The Wine Guy drove from Amsterdam to Berlin for their most recent move. Catpuccino sat at attention on The Diva’s lap ready to take his turn at the wheel should WG need a break from driving!)


Note to reader: To the best of my knowledge, no gerbils were harmed in the taking of the top “intro” picture. The tos/31847658@N00/1414078784/” target=”_blank”>photo of the cat watching the gerbil is merely a stunt double found in a Google search and “borrowed” from Flicker. If you’d like to hear more tragic details of my childhood… my brother’s dog later ate Princess Elizabeth, then my parent’s house blew away in a tornado (along with my mom) and all our family photos were lost (my mom was found). Thus no photo of Princess Elizabeth, my gerbil or my childhood remains. But for photos of a stranger’s cat, tos/31847658@N00/sets/72157603920996756/” target=”_blank”>visit Rigsby’s flicker site.

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Author: Toma Clark Haines

Toma Clark Haines is a Global Tastemaker, Speaker, Writer & Entrepreneur; and founder and CEO The Antiques Diva® & Co, Europe, Asia and America's largest Antiques Sourcing & Touring Company.

  • YOWZA – I somehow neglected to respond to any of your lovely comments!! Forgive me!! Without further adieu:

    Kristie – I’m keeping my little birdie safe from Catpuccino’s nasty little paws!!!

    Anon – Thanks for feeling my pain!

    Kelli – I must have taken 10,000 pics of our little kitty happily purring while we zoomed down the autobahn.

    Victorian Cobweb – Indeed Catpuccino loves to travel… in fact, have I mentioned he has 4 different pet passports? An American one, A French one, A Dutch one and now a German one! My mother-in-law once told asked, as she was booking a trip to come visit us … “How is it your cat is better traveled than I am??!”

    Rose C’est La Vie,
    So glad you enjoyed this blog and I loved your little comment “more like this please”… next time I’m in a witty mood I’ll write a blog in your honor!!

    A 1000 Clapping Hands – Sadly I have few tips to give you on how to get your cat to travel well – Puccino does best when we let him roam the car as opposed to keep him locked in his cage. In fact, sometimes just opening the door to the cage is all he needs – he is content as long as he isn’t’ trapped!

    Tina, my friend – I love you – but you laugh at the drop of a hat!!! I suspect you flatter me! Tee Hee!

    Isa – I knew we were long lost SOUL MATES! Your bunny died too.. How tragic and somehow comforting that I’m not the only hooligan with wild pets that feast on the weaker pets! Darn farm life….

    Great idea!! We’re looking for another kitty now that Catpuccino’s sister Catalina has gone to the great gerbil-filled pasture in the sky!

    Merci Paris Parfait!!!

    Di – I’m on a roll!! I might just win at your site too… hmmm, will you give me a sympathy vote?? And we could have indeed passed on the streets of A’dam last weekend – the first fete we attended was at Sotheby’s but the second was on the Kaizersgracht just a few blocks away from the Anne Frank Huis!

    No Thank You! You had a great idea on your blog solving my laundry room woes! Would love to hear from you when you come to Europe!

    We’ve just ordered our new car – an Audi SUV, perfect for hauling antiques and antique shoppers around in!! In the meantime, my husband is terrorizing the road in a Mercedes E Class and his claim to fame is recently driving 155 mph on the autobahn. The car in the pic with Catpuccino in the Volkswagen Touareg which we rented for 2 weeks during the move.

    The Antiques Diva

  • That photo of Puccino beside Beej in the car CRACKED ME UP!!! J What kind of car did he decide to get? I remember he said it must be German!

  • Thank you so much for your lovely comment on my post on organizing cleaning tools. The thought that I was able to somehow inspire someone through my blog absolutely tickles my soul and makes blogging so worthwhile. Yours is also very inspiring for me…I bookmarked it and will definitely contact you when we visit Europe.

    Imelda@Inspired Simplicity

    I love your banner…adorable!

  • The massive Norfolk Antique & Collectors Fair returns to the Norfolk Showground this Easter – discounted tickets are available online NOW.
    More information about this extremely popular show, which takes place on Good Friday 10th – Saturday 11th April (EASTER WEEKEND) can be found

  • Wood Green Antique & Collectors Fair returns to the popular Wood Green Animal Shelter this weekend and is fully booked with exhibitors.
    The extremely popular event, which attracts a wide range of visitors from across the UK is crammed full of interesting antiquities (and collectables) from across the globe.

    You don't have to be a serious collectors to enjoy this show, you may even discover that the heirloom passed down from your family is worth a small fortune!

    From ornaments to antique jewellery, furniture to plates the Wood Green Antique & collectors Fair is sure to have something for everyone.

    Get discounted tickets online and save 50p

    Show Details

    Venue: Wood Green Animal Shelter, Godmanchester, Cambs, PE29 2NH
    Dates: Saturday 4th – Sunday 5th April 2009
    Open: 10am – 5pm Saturday; 10am – 4pm Sunday
    Admission: £3.00 (£2.50 online)

  • Congratulations!

    I’m thinking of putting two more of my photographs out there for someone to win. Good luck if you pass by 🙂

    And imagine if we had met on the streets of Amsterdam. I’m a bit of a give-away, as the camera is usually in hand but we stuck to the streets around Anne Frank, the flower market and the canals. I guess that would make my Australian friend and I … tourists!

    I loved your sculptor story!

  • I just adore you! You are so funny … nanny nanny boo boo. I cracked up! .. and the photo of your cat in the front seat of the car – priceless!
    First of all, congratulations on winning that adorable bird!! YAY you!
    Secondly – don’t feel alone about the tragic end of your gerbil. I had a class bunny that met a similar end at the hands (paws?) of my border collie… eep.

    Enjoy your bird, your day and your weekend!
    xo Isa

  • What a wild story!! And what an interesting life you lead! Thank you so much for stopping by and visiting me. I am crazy about your cat! So beautiful…and such a good traveler. I am hoping that my next kitty will like to travel. Any tips?
    All the best,

  • oh diva, you are just TOO funny! perhaps the little birdie can make up for the long lost gerbil…unless catpuccino gets ahold to it. the picture of him ‘driving’ is so sweet.