It was almost 3 years ago that I began sharing my love of food and recipes.  My vision of the perfect blog was to take beautiful photos of food and paint a picture, so to speak, as to how a recipe comes together with step by step instructions.  I have always been drawn to cookbooks with beautiful photos and wanted to create something that would let you imagine the aroma and taste of the dish.  I quickly found that I didn’t have very many plates and dishes in which to lay out my recipes.  I look back at the early posts and see the same plates used over and over for the first few month’s.  My sister Kat solved my problem and enlightened me to a whole new world.  I call her the “Queen of Thrifting”.  She has a vintage eye and knows what to look for at yard sales, flea markets and thrift stores.  It’s like a treasure hunt when we go thrifting. Over the past 3 years I have acquired quite a collection of items that I found at Goodwill and other thrift stores.  I don’t spend very much, if it’s too expensive at one place, there’s another shop right around the corner that might have something better or cheaper.  It’s like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get.  Some days you hit the jack pot and other days not so much.  The fun comes when you find something rare or something new or something that you like to collect.  I’m also sharing a couple of my favorite things, things that were handed down to me or tugged at my heartstrings like my very own cookbook.  Josh designed it and gave it to me for Christmas.  It brought me to tears when I unwrapped it and saw how much work and love went into making it.  It’s something I will treasure forever!


After I found that first piece of Noritake stoneware I was hooked.  It’s the one thing I hunt for every time I go thrifting.  I love all the patterns and have a collection of different plates, bowls and accessories.  I can’t choose a favorite, it’s just fun to have a little piece of this and a little piece of that.


The soup bowls . . .  5 different patterns.  I’ve only found one Noritake “Blue Adobe” which is on the far left.


I love the lip of each bowl with their beautiful colors and Southwest designs.


Noritake “Warm Sands”. . . I rarely find a complete set of anything at one time.  I found these 3 pieces at different stores, different times.  I love when I find a missing piece to a collection.


Noritake “Boulder Ridge” . . . beautiful turquoise green.


Noritake “Madera Ivory”. . . just found the matching plate to this bowl last week.


Noritake “Sand ‘N Sky”. . . love the Southwest print.


Noritake “Painted Desert”. . . salsa bowl.


Found this Noritake “Lily” cream pitcher at a thrift store in Albuquerque.


I found a couple of Mikasa plates on a clearance rack which I think have character.


I fondly refer to this as my paisley plate.


And what about this bright blue square Mikasa plate . . .


This little bowl was found for .49 cents.


Isn’t it cute, I use it as a small utensil holder.


I have a few Dansk dishes, they are all the “Mesa” pattern.


I found a gorgeous blue cake plate, 2 large plates, 2 dessert plates and a cream and sugar bowl.


These were given to me by my good friend Wendy.  Love the bright colors!


You have to have just the right food to showcase on these plates but I love the shiny green color.


These are great for photographs, the natural color of the plate doesn’t detract from the food especially if you have a colorful food to display.


These are a recent find.  I call these the “painted plates”.


Love the painted flowers and how I can mix and match colors.


These are all Bobby Flay designs.  The red plate is courtesy of Kat!


I love this colorful Bobby Flay print.  I picked out a large plate, soup bowl and salsa bowl.


I did splurge on this tortilla warmer from the Bobby Flay collection.  I had a $10 off coupon with 50% discount, use it or lose it kind of deal.  I used it!


These are Newcor dessert plates.


This is a vintage Gold Crown salad plate found at a garage sale.


And you might have seen one of these back in the day (if you’re old enough) . . . a Ballerina bowl.


I’ve seen this pattern of the Oneida collection at Williams and Sonoma but these soup and dessert bowls were found at Goodwill!


The color of these bowls remind me of a hazy blue/gray sky.


They are trimmed in gold with a pretty pattern around the outer edge.


I call these the”bronze plates”.  They speak to me.


They have a beautiful texture and color that makes them unique.


Another splurge, World Market had a flash sale on salad plates, 50% off for a 2 hour period. When I got that email I headed on over.


I love the colors of the Southwest.  They can range from bold and vivid to pale and pastel.  This is a simple white wrapped in terra cotta.


This would be the bold and vivid Southwest.


My chile plate with a splash of red and green!


I found this bowl in Taos at the “Made In New Mexico” store, made in my hometown at the Red Earth Studio.  It’s a favorite for sure.



Here are some of the things my sister has given me over the years.  Love this cute little salsa bowl that resembles a molcajete.


This was from my last trip to Albuquerque.  A little orange condiment bowl.


That went with a yellow salsa bowl that Kat picked out for me the previous year.


The kokopelli plate.


The beautiful poppies!


This Pier 1 salad plate is one of my favorites from Goodwill.

Pier-1-Mosaic Plate

Another Pier 1 mosaic pattern plate from my sweet Mom In Law, Joan!


I serve pasta in this large Paisley bowl.


This salad plate has a turquoise hue with a Southwest design.


I picked these salad bowls for their vivid purple color.


And I have two of these bowls with the strawberry etched design.


Garage sale find. . . next door.


Really pretty turquoise color with gold trim.


I picked this up at World Market.  Did you know if you sign up for their rewards you will get a $10.00 voucher each year for your birthday.  I waited 6 month’s for that reward so I could get this vintage decorated cake pan.


On to some vintage kitchen tools.  My Mom gave me the biscuit cutter which has an inner ring inside.  I remember her making donuts.   If I think back, I can still smell and taste them, oh they were just about the best thing . . .  They were yeast donuts, deep fried and dipped in glaze.  We would eat them as soon as they hit the plate.  The potato masher was handed down from my Grandmother.  It’s an odd square shape and very cool.  I found the vintage cheese grater at Goodwill. I Googled it and found it originally had a wooden handle which Joe agreed to make for me some day.


I found this meat grinder a couple month’s ago.  All the parts are in the original box and it just needs a a good soak in some vinegar to clean it up.


Even came with the original instructions.  I’ve thought about making homemade sausage or grinding my own hamburger meat.


Ovenex . . . My Mom gave me the center loaf pan when I got married.  I’ve found that it is the best pan for making loafs of yeast bread or banana bread.  Since then I came across 2 more Ovenex loaf pans with a different design.  They may be old, but they are the best for baking.


I found some Ovenex muffin pans that are an odd size.  There were 3 pans each with a different pattern, larger than a mini muffin but smaller than a regular muffin.  These are too small to fit a paper cupcake wrapper inside.


This one is like the loaf pan that Mom gave me.


This one is a totally different pattern than I’ve seen before.


This is a baguette pan that I believe is an Ovenex.  It has the same design as the loaf pans and muffin pans.


My collection of muffin pans.  The jumbo Wilton pan is good for making Bird’s Nest Brunch.  I’m working on a recipe for baked donut holes in the mini pans.  Then there is the cupcake/muffin and the slightly smaller Ovenex muffin tins.


I always wanted a wok but with an electric stovetop it just wasn’t an option.  Once I got my gas stove I started looking for a wok and found this “well seasoned” wok for $2.  It was marked on the handle “Taylor & NG” so I looked it up and it seems to be a great find.  It looks like one that is listed at around $50.


One of my better bargains, a set of Cuisinart Stainless Steel mixing bowls.


I found them at Goodwill on a low shelf hidden way in the back.  They were brand new, not a scratch on them and perfect to use with my hand mixer.  Got all 3 with lids for $4.99


One day I stumbled on to this Wilton Armetale Reggae bread bowl.  I don’t use it as a bread bowl, it’s much too pretty and makes everything look so good.


And then I found this Wilton Armetale Chili Pepper bread bowl on our last trip to NM.  What a gorgeous design!


This is one of the most unique stainless steel platters I’ve ever seen.


I especially love the inlaid mosaic pattern around the edge.


I have a project for this silver platter.  A gourmet kitchen store had cheap platters (of all different shapes and sizes) that had been painted in the center with chalkboard paint.  They then used chalk to write the menu of the day and hung them on the wall.  Would be a cute idea for the kitchen!


This is from Wilton too.  It was in the original box apparently never used.  It’s a cupcake tree holder which displays cupcakes beautifully.


I found this Lazy Susan cake stand one day.  It needed a little tlc.  The wood was dried out but otherwise it was in very good condition.  I applied some mineral oil to a dry cloth and rubbed new life into it.  Later on I found the glass cover and since it didn’t have the pedestal stand to go along with it, it was marked down real cheap.  I hope to find a glass pedestal stand to match it one day but in the meantime I think this works just fine.


I have a thing for colored Coke glasses.  I would love to have one in every color.  For some reason we are always breaking a drinking glass at our house so it’s a good thing there is a Goodwill close by to replace them with.  I can usually pick these up for .49 cents.



This is my favorite coffee cup.  Would you believe I found it in Kansas?  Oh yes I did for .49 cents!  If you ever have the chance to visit The Owl Cafe, try the green chile cheeseburgers.  They are famous for them!


I have several pie plates but this green colored glass is my favorite.


I have a small assortment of Pyrex bowls.  These are small condiment size and have a blue tint.


This Pyrex casserole dish is tinted green.


These pyrex bowls have a frosted pattern on them that I think is very pretty.  I found the large bowl a couple years ago and a year later the medium sized bowl.


Red Pyrex round cake pan.


I found these earlier this year.  They are mint condition vintage Pyrex Hamilton Beach Mixing Bowls.  There’s not a blemish to be found on these bowls.  The larger bowl was $2.99 and the smaller $1.99.  Can’t beat that!  It was an extremely cold day and there was a lot of shoppers at the Goodwill store that particular day.  It was hard to get through the aisles to look through all the new stuff they were setting out.  I wasted a bit of time in another area and came back later to find these gorgeous bowls.  They were ice cold to the touch so I knew they had just priced them and brought them in from the donation room.


My Mom gave me these Pyrex Butterprint relish bowls when I got married.  I’m positive there is another larger bowl somewhere in a box packed away but I don’t quite know where.  One day I’ll find it.


Then a few weeks ago I came across this turquoise Pyrex Butterprint bowl.


It’s a little faded on the outside but the inside is shiny like new.


Pfaltzgraff . . . For years I wanted to get a new set of dishes, bowls, platters, the whole enchilada. But I could never make up my mind on what pattern, so many choices and I could never pick just one.  Thrifting has shown me that I no longer need to have that perfect set, who wants to set their table with the same dishes day in and day out anyway when you could have a variety and decorate your table according to your mood or the season.


This Pfaltzgraff “Sphere” is a great serving dish.


These soup/cereal bowls are Pfaltzgraff “Seaspray”.


The Pfaltzgraff “Yorktowne” is one of the most popular and easy to find pattern.  I like the small bowls the best, they are perfect size for condiments or salsa.


The Pfaltzgraff “Village” pattern reminds me of Kat, she always loved this pattern.  I have just 2 pieces, a dessert plate and just found a soup/cereal bowl last week.


This soup/cereal bowl is Phalftzgraff “Folk Art”.


I found this mixing bowl and thought it was cool with the etched berries.  When I turned it over I was surprised to find . . .


it is also a Pfaltzgraff.


These etchings make the bowl special.


It took some digging but I finally found the pattern.  It is Pfaltzgraff “Blossom”.   Apparently it comes with a pretty etched lid too.  Maybe one day I’ll come across a lid . . .


These peachy colored soup bowls with the dainty flowers are Pfaltzgraff  “Remembrance”.


This dessert plate is also from the Pfaltzgraff “Remembrance”collection, even though it is shiny white instead of the peach.


This cute little dessert plate is a Pfaltzgraff “Garden Party”.


I love the subtle print on Pfaltzgraff “Herritage”.


I use this Pfaltzgraff “Juniper” pitcher as a holder for my long handled utensils.


I’m almost finished, I promise,  but I had to show off something that is pretty special, at least it is to me.


Just a few month’s after I began blogging, I entered one of “Pioneer Woman’s” giveaways and actually won this gorgeous Candy Apple Red Kitchenade Mixer!


This is my first and only stand mixer.  It is the perfect color for me and I enjoy it SOOO much! Thank you Ree!


Before I end this post I’m going to give you a little taste of how Josh designed my cookbook.


This is the introduction . . .


He included lots of photos with each recipe which is exactly how I would have wanted it!  Thank you Josh!