Thursday, June 20, 2013

Collecting vintage wall clocks: The Face of my Adversary

   You are staring into the face of my number one adversary - the household clock. What may seem to you as an innocent fixture has been the cause of my rushing and stressing out for as long as I can remember. I do LOVE these old clocks for their beautiful form and vibrant colors - but oh, how I dislike their function!
    From the beginning of time, I have always been late. When I was a child growing up in Ohio, I frequently kept my family of five waiting in the car for me. My Dad even dubbed me with the nickname "Last Minute Charlie" and joked that I would someday have a child just like me.
   While serving in the Navy, I was reprimanded on many occasions for my tardiness and was even required to muster one hour before working hours began for an entire month - oh the torture in that!
   It was during my young adult years that I embraced the mantra: "The party doesn't start until I get there" and lived by it without guilt...until I got married.
   They say Opposites attract; well, whoever "they" are, they were right - at least in my case. I married a Marine Corps Officer (need I say more?). My mantra didn't fly with him and for the next few years my lackadaisical attitude was the kindling to many fires in our days of newlywed bliss. My dear and patient gentleman became an aggravated and frustrated man when he learned that his bride was undisciplined as far as punctuality was concerned. The struggle did however come to a lull when we were blessed with children.

   Becoming a parent benefited me tremendously because for once in my life, I had a good excuse for being late: morning sickness, cranky baby, diaper blow-out, hungry toddler, sick child, etc., etc. In the blink of an eye, however, our little kids became big kids, and alas, I could no longer use them as my excuse.  
   To my husband's delight, he had another punctual player on his team, our daughter Autumn. She is very prompt and becomes quite irritated if she is late to anything. 
   I guess you can say, "what goes around comes around," because our son Brian joined my team (although he's not nearly as bad as I am) and is known on occasion to make the three of us wait for him in the family car.  I blame this on my dear old Dad who jinxed me those many years ago.

     I'd like to say the reason for my tardiness is that I'm just not a morning person, (which is true), but unfortunately my aversion to punctuality is not restricted to the first part of the day. Nope, it's pretty much an all day occurrence with me.

   My kids joke that when the sad day comes to hold my funeral, they will encourage the hearse driver to take the scenic route, stop for a donut, return a library book and maybe whip into a yard sale on their way to the church so that I can have one last opportunity to make people wait on me. 

  In all seriousness, when my husband and I first learned that we were expecting our first child, we read a series of books with the first called "On Becoming BabyWise," [by Gary Ezzo and Robert Bucknam, M.D., Multnomah Publishers Inc]. One lesson caught my attention and has not been forgotten: being punctual is to show respect to others and to be late is to steal someone's valuable time from them. I wholeheartedly agree with that. It's putting it into practice that is such a challenge for me. Being on time is something that I definitely have to work hard at, and every now and then I succeed! Hopefully one day I will be known as a punctual person, (boy won't that flip my husband out), but until then just give me lots of grace and please love me in spite of myself. 

  I've been collecting old clocks for about fifteen years and display them in my kitchen. Mid-century wall clocks like these can be found at on-line auctions as well as your local thrift shops, flea markets and antique stores ranging from $5 - $80+ depending on condition, color and style. I try to keep my clock budget under $15, which is a real challege since they are hot items these days. Oftentimes the cords are too funky or too dangerous to plug into the wall. Most of the cords in my clock collection have been snipped off or wrapped tight and taped from behind. Thanks to companies like Kit Cat Klock, Sessions, Westclox Electric, Sunbeam, General Electric, and Lux for making these lovely, stylish and TIMELESS beauties! 
 Note: You can still order Kit Cat clocks today at  (I'm on my 3rd one!)


  1. I loved reading this post and the one about traveling. Awesome! You brought a smile to my face:)

    1. Thanks Elena, I'm glad you liked them! Keep on smiling and keep coming back for more! :)


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