Let’s start with some links today!

Three recent discoveries for people who love things inspired by the past.

Literary Traveler – A cool site where you can explore travel destinations by your favorite literary heroes or villains.

Victorian Trading Company – Lots and lots of vintage-inspired things, from fashion to greeting cards, plus free e-greetings with a Victorian flair.  My friend Julie introduced me to this site. It’s her source for Christmas cards.

Heart My Closet – An Etsy site offering custom-made, vintage-inspired dresses cut to your measurements.

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What I’m wearing
I’ve never spent a day of my life on a ski slope, but you don’t need to ski to be smitten by this limited-edition vintage print by Neve, a specialty brand that makes clothing for winter sports. I discovered Neve at Sierra Trading Post and Amazon. Unfortunately, sizes and prints on these sweaters are few and far between, which is exactly what makes them worthy of the hunt, in my opinion. It’s all original artwork, inspired by iconic mountain images. (They’re made of silk, merino wool and spandex—warm, but not scratchy!)

The French Connection
The girl in this scene reminds me of how Hadley might have dressed in the 1920s when she was skiing the slopes of Chamby, Switzerland with husband Ernest Hemingway. Or rather how Hadley would have dressed if her brutish husband hadn’t vetoed all her clothing purchases, which would have been made with money SHE earned. Evidently, Hemingway felt her money was better spent on his drunken exploits. Doesn’t it chap your hide to think about that? Ah, but no worries. Hadley wins in the long run.

A little research on Chamonix (the text running down the sleeve of this sweater) confirmed my date estimate for this retro scene. Chamonix was the site for the first Winter Olympics in 1924. It sits at the foot of Mont Blanc in the Rhone-Alps region of France.

If you travel to the northeast about eight hours, you’ll find yourself in Normandy, where 9,387 American veterans from World War II are buried in a 172-acre cemetery maintained by strangers. Thousands of families chose to have their loved ones buried there rather than bringing them home. But why? Was it expensive? Did it take too long? Who, after giving up so much, would have been content to entrust such a burial to strangers? It’s a mystery.

Here’s a thoughtful story about a woman who was always baffled by her parents decision to bury her brother in Normandy, where she would never have a chance to lay flowers at his grave.

Tomorrow is Veterans Day, a chance to thank veterans who served our country. So many haven’t lived to hear our praise, and others are haunted for life by war’s brutality.

In my family, two brothers and a nephew are veterans. There are countless family friends, not to mention their spouses and children, who’ve sacrificed so much in service to our country. It’s so easy to forget those family members who don’t serve directly, but suffer and worry over absent family members, nevertheless.

We owe them all our deepest gratitude. Who’s the veteran in your family?

Life is short. Wear the good stuff.