Tour de Mystery: The Myrtles Mystery Tour

Moving on to the second part of our The Myrtles: Inspiration, History and Mystery adventure, we pick up with our party of three filling the afternoon hours taking in local points of interest while counting down the time to The Myrtles Mystery Tour portion of our trip to St. Francisville, Louisiana.

Our story takes place fifteen years ago, right around the time I opened Hopefully Classic Antiques and Interiors.

Antique shopping was high on the list of things to do, see and buy.


The Shanty Too – Visit St. Francisville

We trekked the streets and shops of downtown St. Francisville until we could trek no more, and now we are on to New Roads, Louisiana.

Miss EmilyMiss Emily – photo by Darrell Chitty

In a glowing review of highlights and attractions of this quaint area the not  story of Miss Emily is a must tell.

Miss Emily was a local woman who worked the queue of vehicles waiting to board the ferry on the St. Francisville side of the Mississippi River selling snacks, homemade pralines and cold drinks.

Sitting in line waiting to drive onto the ferry goes better with an ice cold Coke, salty peanuts and a homemade praline.

We continued our afternoon nosh aboard the ferry as we crossed the Mississippi River.

This unique mode of transportation is now closed.

In the name of progress and moving on up, the ferry has been replaced by the  John James Audubon Bridge.

I’m glad we got the chance take a ride on it before it did.

John James AudubonJohn James Audubon Bridge

New Roads did not disappoint. I didn’t know what I was expecting in return from this small town, but it delivered lagniappe in a big way.

We found our way to the main part of town and hit up several antique shops.

The first shop (sorry, I can’t remember the name of any of the shops) specialized in clocks and vintage walking sticks.

Dave the Builder was in his height of glory.

As we entered the shop, we were welcomed by the owner, an older gentleman well versed in the art of antiques and Southern charm, and a lovely older lady whose greeting came in the form of my kind of question, “champagne or fruit punch?”


Our son put in his request for the fruit punch.

I guess she could tell I was a little apprehensive about their comfort level with him in the shop with a goblet full of bright red fruit punch.

I knew this kid was raised in and around the biz and the dos and don’ts in shops and showrooms, but I also knew she was not privy to this pertinent piece of information.

This lovely and wise woman handled the situation with such grace and tact.

She invited our son to follow her to the butler’s pantry to help fix the drinks and to slip him a chocolate chip cookie or two.

Gosh, what a great memory!

We sipped, shopped and scored two of the most unique antique walking sticks.

I wish I had them both today, but I sold them to a client the following week.

Oh well, the memory is more valuable to me than the walking sticks could ever be.


We found a couple of other shops and enjoyed the local fare before heading back via ferry to St. Francisville.

The timing was just right as it was barking up on sunset and coffee time.


Visit St. Francisville

We crossed another suggested stop off our list by visiting The Magnolia Cafe.

This place is an unpretentious do drop inn heavy on casual fun, food, and drink.

History & Haunting of the Myrtles Plantation

History & Haunting of the Myrtles Plantation

It was about that time to head out for the Myrtles Mystery Tour.

We drove up the winding driveway of The Myrtles, and the setting and timing could not have been better to set the mood and the tone for a mystery tour.

The above image says it better than I can.

Myrtles at night

Welcome to the Myrtles Mystery Tour

We claimed three of the large rocking chairs on the veranda and pondered what was to come.

While the crowd and the anticipation built, certain imaginations showed signs of running away with the night.

Miss Hester, our tour guide for the evening, casually opened the front door at precisely 7:00 pm and invited the crowd of about twenty to come right on in.

Talk about playing to an attentive and crowded room!

We all gathered together in the foyer with wide eyes and listening ears.

This is where things begin to get interesting.

Stay tuned.








Travel Times: Summer Vacation Memories

Deep in the soul of summer travel times with family and friends lurks the shadows of summer vacation memories.

A rise in temperatures signaled the rise in my travel anticipation, even if our holiday road only lead to a local pool, creek, or lake.

summer vacation memories at the lakePinterest

“Summer will end soon enough, and childhood as well.”

– George R.R. Martin, A Game of Thrones

Hancock Springs poolThe Road Trip Destination Guide

For those times when the holiday road lead to East Tennessee or anywhere in the great state of Texas the party was on!

Summer, family reunions, cousins, and swimming pools go naturally together.

Lampasas, Texas set the scene for our annual summer family reunion. While the parents, grandparents, aunt, and uncles told tall tales, prepared epic picnic fare, and played 42,  my cousins and I clocked hours in the Hancock Springs Pool.

I’m not sure,  but I believe my love and fascination with swimming pools began there and then.

Everything is bigger in Texas, especially the memories!

Great Smoky Mountains National ParkThe Great Smokies

Gatlinburg, Tennessee and the  Great Smoky Mountains National Park will forever be considered my home away from home.

Every summer of my childhood my parents, brother, and I made our annual trek to East Tennessee.  It’s a travel tradition that has carried through to my family.

Memories from the past blend in with new memories we are making. I like a little past served with the present, and summer vacations tend to deliver on that front.

Remember these?

aluminum tumblersLeaf tv

A picnic in the Smokies is a must do for our gang of merry travelers.

As much as convenience tempts me, Solo cups need not apply.

I pack a mean vintage picnic basket complete with aluminum tumblers circa 19ihavenoidea.

Ever the colorista, these darlings make a summer tablescape pop with their blast from the past retro fashion colors.

Holiday Inn signFast Company

Dave the Builder and I were both raised in the era of larger than life hotel and motel swimming pools.

How many of you were too?

Big haul road trips came with the extra added bonus of at least one overnight stay in a hotel or motel.

The mid trip overnighter existed in order to break the “are we there yet?” monotony.

This is where things had the power to get summer splash zone interesting.

The first indication of how good or how bad things were to come was based on the size, style, and neon quotient of the hotel or motel sign.

Didn’t your heart drop at first glimpse of a beloved Holiday Inn sign?

The parents may have measured the quality of the overnight accommodations by the luxury offerings, but the kids knew what really mattered- the swimming pool.

In order for a property to receive the kid approved five star rating there better be a whole lotta pool time on the schedule.

Twin Islands Best WesternGatlinburg, Tennessee

I guess the more things change the more they stay the same.

We’ve clocked many sun screened soaked hours at many a swimming pool with our son.

Whenever I see the swimming pool in the image above my mind and heart immediately take me back to a late July afternoon twelve years ago when our son learned to swim.

It’s those kind of summer vacation memories that become the priceless souvenirs of a lifetime.  

Where will you be making summer vacation memories this year?

Antiques and Home Decor Accessories

Finding antiques and home decor accessories and quality fabric made for a successful inventory shopping trip.

Nice digs, good food and great company rounded out the fun.

Horseshoe Bossier City

Mixing business with pleasure makes for an excellent start.

We arrived Sunday evening to warm temps, flowing fountains and our favorite North Louisiana home away from home,Horseshoe Bossier City.

hotel lobby

Dave the Builder and our son were immediately taken with this eye candy,

Jaguar XKR

and I with this.

crystal chandelier

Strong Louisiana coffee kicked off a Monday of shopping.

With portfolio in hand, we hit the antique and accessory inventory shopping trail.

I suggested we shop accessories first and maybe, just maybe, throw in Marshall’s, Hobby Lobby, Belk and World Market for good measure.

Looking good while inventory shopping and selling is an essential part of the equation, plus it is a point hard to argue with!

wing chair

Antiques and home decor accessories shops and boutiques did not disappoint.

I was pulled to this display as soon as the nailhead accents of this wing chair and gold rope detail of the gorgeous accent mirror caught my attention.

antiques and home decor accessories

Accent accouterments hold the decorative power to actually define the piece.


A melange of characters and themes~ under the sea with Mr. Peanut and one seriously cracked up flying pig.

home decor

club chair

The next shopping destination we happened upon was new to our shopping haunts.

Don’t ever let anyone tell you a fashionably appointed window display will not capture ones attention as they are motoring down the heavily traveled main shopping corridor of Shreveport, Louisiana.

Dave the Builder is used to my occasional and often sudden “stop here!” outbursts and bless his mad driving and maneuvering traffic skills.

houndstooth upholstered chairUniquely Yours of Shreveport is an upscale consignment shop I enjoyed finding and browsing in.

The twig chandeliers and black and white houndstooth upholstered spot chair are under consideration for future purchase.


Antique shopping from this dealer’s resale eye is not rocket science.

Pieces reasonably priced, full of character, shop ready or easily able to be, and those that possess a unique attraction catch and hold my eye.

Some pieces have an unexplained attraction, a “I don’t know what to do with it, or why I love it, but I’m buying it anyway” quality.

I absolutely love those pieces!

Unfortunately, this set of “Men at Work” masonry statues at Timeline Antiques and Collectibles was priced out of my resale comfort zone.

King's Antique Mall

I always find a treasure or two at King’s Antique Mall.

With all the antique buying excitement I forgot to snap a pic of the shop.

The above image is borrowed from their website.

Victorian chair

My decorative imagination went wild when I spotted this deconstructed Victorian chair with lion’s paw feet.

Dave the Builder was consulted, a phone call was made to the upholsterer, and the decision to continue to decide was made.

I love a decorative design challenge!

primitive corner cabinet

I like to pick up a memory piece from our combination business with pleasure shopping trips- just a little remembrance keepsake.

Antiques on Gladstone

I found a particular dealer’s booth at King’s Antique Mall quite intriguing on both the merchandise and sale price front.

I hit the vintage restaurant china and antique creamer jackpot and added R.S. Prussia and Versailles Bavaria plates to my ever growing personal collection.

wooden box

An exciting “eyedea” inspired me this trip.

I have the pet project lined up to share with you all in the next few weeks.

fabric samples

antique spool cabinet

This antique inventory buying trip resulted in making one of my clients very happy, and the good deals made us all very happy.

Summer sales are in full force in all of the shops we visited, and the discounts are shopper friendly.

antique desk

Our antique inventory shopping trip was a success all the way around.

Happy sellers, happy buyers, happy clients, and happy trails back home.

Love your style!