Grandfather clocks

When Only a Grandfather Clock Will Do

10.28.08

There are those spaces in all of our homes that call out for something very specific; something very particular that is the only thing that will fit the bill. When I moved into my new home I was terrified by the amount of space, to be honest. It’s not that I didn’t love the wide hallways, the closets, and the rooms that flowed easily one into the next; it was that I was unsure of myself in terms of actually placing things in my home that would work in terms of style and scale.

This one part of the house has very high ceilings and lots of natural light; while it’s not really a room – more of a landing between the first and second floor, it is one of my very favorite spots in the whole house. There was enough room there to put a big overstuffed chair and reading lamp – which I did – so that there was a quiet little nook where you could read a book or just watch the rain outside on the windows. But it needed something else. And I knew just what it was; a grandfather clock.

I began my search for a grandfather clock through many traditional stores and outlets. But not just any grandfather clock would do; I knew that I would know it when I saw it. And I did – online. Once I began searching for that special grandfather clock through online resources I found exactly what I wanted – exactly what I loved – on this great website. Now my quiet little nook is exactly what I envisioned.

Grandfather Clock Shopping with my Grandfather

10.27.08

Before I moved into my new home with my new husband, I had quite a lot of preparation to do. Prior to this home, we had both only lived in small apartments with roommates; and we had all brought what little we had to the party. This meant an odd collection of mismatched plates and utensils, the bare minimum in terms of cookware, hand-me-down furniture, and “cheesy” decorating.

So prior to our wedding and our move into our new home, my husband and I spent countless hours collecting those products that we were sure we would need immediately including all of the kitchenware that you don’t give any thought to when you are living at home. Imagine my surprise when I went to open a can our first week in our home only to discover that I did not have a can opener; one of the many things that you take for granted when you are under someone else’s roof.

But aside from the fundamentals, I was very interested in really decorating our home tastefully, albeit affordably. I had the most fun trolling the home retail outlets in search of deals and my tried and true companion during this time was my grandfather. Long since retired, my grandfather loved shopping almost as much as I did; and this kind of shopping gave him a real purpose as we set off together in search of such things as the perfect towels.

One of the things that my grandfather was really adamant about me looking at was grandfather clocks. He said it was the next best thing to having him stand in a corner of my house all day. So for weeks we went around looking at grandfather clocks as he pointed out the finer points of the pendulum technology and all the other things I didn’t understand.

What I did understand however, was how much I really loved these clocks and how beautiful one would look in my home if I could, that is, find one that really spoke to me. After many weeks in and out of stores, it was my turn to show my grandfather a thing or two and so I took him online. There, to our delight, we found a website that specialized in clocks – great selection, great prices, and the convenience of shopping from home. Through this amazing website we were able to find a grandfather clock that fit in my home perfectly and passed the test of my grandfather to boot!

The Grandfather Clock of My Dreams

10.26.08

I have had a recurring dream for many years now; in the dream I am on a swing that keeps going higher and higher until I feel that I will eventually fall if it doesn’t slow down. Then, just as feel myself getting completely out of control I hear the sound of a chiming clock and the swing begins to slow down until it is simply swinging calmly back and forth like the pendulum on that clock. The dream always ends with the swing finally coming to a complete stop and me turning with relief and gratitude toward the grandfather clock in the corner; the grandfather clock that had brought me back down to solid ground.

I know. It’s ridiculous. But I had that dream for so many years that I really never gave too much thought to it any real way; until the grandfather clock of my dreams was suddenly right in front of me.

I built this amazing library in my new home; the library I had always wanted where I could sit for hours on rainy days and read book after book that lined the shelves around the room. I just love this room. But I always knew that what it really needed to completely finish off the space was a grandfather clock; something that I began to search in earnest for online.

Who knew that there were so many options on the Internet? I wound up finding this great website that had as many grandfather clocks – and probably more – than you would ever see in a typical retail location. I hunted through the pages of high quality clocks from really well-known designers and, suddenly there it was – the grandfather clock of my dreams. I hadn’t even really thought about that clock during waking hours but the second I saw it I knew that it was the grandfather clock that I always turned to at the end of my dreams.

Needless to say, I bought that grandfather clock. And I haven’t had that dream since. Instead, if I want to see that grandfather clock I simply go into my library where it sits above me as I read – always the good friend.

Grandfather Clock for Baby, Part II

10.23.08

As I shared in the last post, the time during which I gave birth to my first daughter was a time filled with excitement and trepidation as I made preparations to bring home this tiny new addition to our family. What I found after her birth was that I was far less concerned with filling her room with toys, stuffed animals, and fancy clothing – things that were of no interest to her in these early months – as I was with putting memories together for her; things that would be sentimental gifts for her when she was older. But who knew that – in addition to the baby books, the photographs, and the journals – that a grandfather clock would wind up being the most precious touchstone of all?

The grandfather clock came into our lives right after our daughter was born; we were looking at many different grandfather clocks to occupy the entrance in our new home. There were so many styles to choose from – contemporary, traditional, country, eclectic; I couldn’t believe how many designs were available and on the Internet no less, where we could shop at our convenience.

We eventually did find the perfect grandfather clock for our home but what really sealed the deal was when it first arrived and we had just set it up in its new home. When the hour turned the grandfather clock began to chime and my daughter, who was now five weeks old, turned her little head to the clock and smiled for the first time. They were fast friends after that.

The grandfather clock has stood sentry in our home watching our daughter – and later, our son – grow these past years. When I look at our grandfather clock I will always see my daughter’s first smile; and for her, this grandfather clock that has always been in her life will forever be a memory of childhood.

Grandfather Clock for Baby, Part I

10.23.08

When I was expecting my first daughter I was like most new parents-to-be in that I was running around like crazy putting things in place for an event that I couldn’t even wrap my head around; I couldn’t imagine what my life would be like after this child was born – what our life would look like and how things would change. And so I did what any new mother does when they don’t know what to expect – prepare for any and every possibility. Honestly, when I think back to the lengths I went to prepare to bring home this small person who had only the most fundamental of needs I have to laugh. What did a newborn baby need with an “exercise” play area with approximately four-hundred thousand interconnecting parts? Four wardrobes of clothes that had all been pre-washed in the appropriate infant-friendly detergent? A highchair of varying heights and inclines? Ultimately all she needed was me, some clothing basics (that did not involve in any way, shape, or form frilly undergarments and snap jeans), warm and cozy blankets, and enough diapers to circle the globe.

The funny thing was that after she was born I forgot all about the stuff and started to think of the sentimental gifts I wanted to give her at this time. I took as many pictures and videos as I could in my sleep-deprived state, wrote in her baby book, and journaled my experiences as a new mother, hoping that these would all be precious gifts to her one day.

Around the same time we purchased our first home and we were looking for something to fill the foyer in our new entrance; it had this very high ceiling – it was a beautiful space. And what we ultimately found was a grandfather clock that would up filling a number of different roles. It would be the grandfather clock for our home – and our daughter. More in the next post…

You Never Grow Out of Grandfather Clocks

10.18.08

If you have been in your own place for even a few years you have undoubtedly discovered that what you thought was really fun in terms of decorating just a year ago may not necessarily be something that you enjoy today. When I first moved into my home, for instance, I was just married and I happily filled our house with those things that we had received as wedding gifts. Mind you, I had registered for this gifts which means that we had picked them out ourselves. But here I am, ten years later and I’m looking at these dishes and those towels and I’m wondering “who was that person who would have thought these were attractive??”

The point is that styles change and tastes change; that will always be the case. But there will also be those things that will always be considered classics; those things that never go out of style. And in my opinion, grandfather clocks are a perfect representation of that.

We actually got a grandfather clock for our wedding as well – from my husband’s grandparents who have since passed away. I loved this grandfather clock then and I love it now. It transcends trendy style and even changing tastes because it is its own classic; something that will always be perfect and recognizable and fit seamlessly in with a variety of décor.

So I know without a doubt that no matter how many times I change my dishes, or replace my towels, that grandfather clock will always have a spot right here in my house and in my heart – my most favorite, classic piece of furniture.

Remembering Grandfather Clocks, Part II

10.17.08

In the last post I related my story of my close friend who – along with her sister – was charged with cleaning out her parents’ home after their deaths just eight weeks apart from each other. While it was a grueling process, the women were able to complete it with honor and each came home with pieces that would serve as remembrances of their childhood home. My friend chose a grandfather clock that belonged to her father and once I saw it in her house I knew that I wanted something equally lovely for my own home; and something that would forever remind my kids of the place where they spent their childhood.

My search for a grandfather clock was much easier and much more pleasant than I anticipated. Lucky for me, the Internet has offered a whole new world of convenience when it comes to finding clocks of all kinds. I was able to logon and within moments I was browsing through truly unbelievable selections of grandfather clocks – from traditional to contemporary and even some really interesting and different clocks.

I was able to find a traditional style grandfather clock that fits perfectly in my home in terms of size and style. And best of all I know that for many years to come my kids will remember this grandfather clock that stood in their childhood home. Hopefully it will bring back wonderful memories for them some day as it has for my friend. And hopefully they will carry on the tradition by having a grandfather clock in their home for their own families.

Remembering Grandfather Clocks, Part I

10.16.08

A very close friend of mine recently lost both of her parents within a span of eight weeks. It was absolutely horrific and something that no one should have to experience. Aside from the emotional trauma of the actual loss and all that it entailed, my friend and her sister were next charged with cleaning out their parents’ home of forty years and putting it on the market. This was no small task and many obstacles – logistic and emotional – got in the way of it being a smoother process. All in all, it took them nearly three months to complete the job; each piece that they handled evoked memories and each sister agonized over what to do with everything they came across.

Much of the contents of the house were given to charitable organizations which was a nice way for the women to do something meaningful in their parents’ names. Other pieces they wound up taking to their respective homes as remembrances. One of the things that my friend came home with was an absolutely gorgeous grandfather clock that belonged to her father. I was really awestruck by it; and it seemed to work perfectly in her home. She was happy to have something of her dad’s that she could share with her own children and she said that every time the clock chimed she thought of her father singing.

The day I came home from her house I knew that I wanted a grandfather clock for my own home. I wanted something that would remind my kids of home no matter where they went in this life; something that’s sound would spark a happy memory.

How I found my grandfather clock in the next post.

Grandfather Clocks Galore

10.16.08

I have always loved grandfather clocks but in my mind they were sort of more traditional in nature; something that was best displayed in big, traditional homes where the style was classic and the ceilings were tall. Being that I live in a decidedly smaller version of such a home and my style is what most people would kindly refer to as eclectic, I quickly ruled out grandfather clocks as something that could integrate into my décor, even though I loved them in theory.

But a friend recently introduced me to a website where I was able to browse through the most extensive selection of grandfather clocks that I had ever seen. And, boy, within a few minutes I had been proven wrong about grandfather clocks only being available in a few traditional styles. In fact, I was able to locate grandfather clocks that were more contemporary in nature and even quite a selection that were right up my alley – more fun and funky than classic or contemporary.

My new grandfather clock was delivered yesterday and I am so pleased with my decision. It looks great in my home and is already a conversation piece. I had friends over last night and they were all amazed by how cool this grandfather clock is – how different it is (which I absolutely love as I am all for “different”). And now I’m turning a bunch of my friends onto the same website so they can get an idea of all the fun clocks out there that they can find for their homes – grandfather clocks galore!

Finding a Grandfather Clock that I Remember, Part II

10.13.08

As recounted in the last post, the grandfather clock was a staple in the homes of my European childhood. They were simply a part of the decor of the homes of friends and relatives; something that I largely took for granted until we came to this country without much more than the shirts on our backs.

After spending many years with relatives who had preceded us to America – a dozen of us squeezed into a two-bedroom city apartment while my parents started a small business – we finally began to see our efforts pay off and my family was able to move to our own house. There we began to recreate our home, complete with a grandfather clock that my mother had crafted for our new house.

Later, as a newly-married adult, I began to look for my first house along with my wife. With all the excitement of first-time home buyers we didn’t stop looking until we found something that spoke to us; something that was perfect for us. And the first thing that I did when we moved in was to go in search of the perfect grandfather clock.

I did not have far to look in this day and age as the Internet has opened up all new worlds of shopping opportunities. And so I was able to do something that my relatives all those many years ago would never have even dreamed possible – I sat at my computer and ordered the perfect grandfather clock for my home. And in a few days time, it arrived – as perfect as I could ever have imagined. Now my house is a home.

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