Archive for the ‘Cuckoo Clocks’ Category
I once worked in a clock shop with my father for a while and it nearly drove me insane. For one thing, my father is an eccentric person and he can be very strange sometimes, so following his rules in the workshop were often a little bit bizarre, even having expected this since I’d lived with him my whole life. Seeing him at home and at work though was a bit of overload.
The other thing that started to drive me a little bit insane was the tick-tock of the cherry grandfather clocks that we kept. They were perfectly synchronized and the sounds were sometimes quite noticeable, which started making feel like I was living in my own version of Edgar Allan Poe’s “Telltale Heart”. Needless to say, I stopped working there after a while.
I love rummaging through yard sales. There’s always some unexpected treasure I come across. People throw out their things without fully knowing how much they’re worth. I’ve seen people sell hundreds of dollars worth of action figures for a few dollars. A few years back, I found some old baseball cards that were worth over a thousand dollars. You here stories of people finding ancient documents hidden inside old paintings and selling them to museums for millions. I haven’t had anything that big happen yet, but I still hold out hope.
This past weekend, I came across some old coo coo clocks at a garage sale. I didn’t think they were worth much money; I just liked the way they looked. I could tell that they were hand made and from a foreign country because of the writing on the back of it. I bought the three of them for twenty dollars and I took them home and hung them on my wall. I put them in different rooms and synched them up so I could hear the chimes they play every hour. I think it gives my house a rustic feel to it.
One of the most vivid memories I have is staying with my grandparents when my parents would be off working. A few afternoons a week, my grandparents would look after my brother and I after school let out. We would walk a few blocks to their house where we would do our homework while watching television. Every once and a while, we would just have the whole afternoon to just eat cookies or play outside in their yard.
I would always get quite the enjoyment out of an old cuckoo clock that was in my grandparent’s kitchen. Every hour on the hour, a red, wooden bird would announce the time to us. I remember the first few times I saw it, it would scare me. But as I grew older, I learned to enjoy it because it was obnoxiously loud and entertaining. The clock eventually stopped working but it still hangs on the wall in my grandparents’ kitchen to this very day. Maybe I should have it repaired one of these days so every hour can be as enjoyable as it used to be.
My grandmother used to own an antique store, which had all sorts of interesting items for sale in it. She had a lot of ceramic collectibles of different animals, which I always enjoyed looking at as a child. Probably the most extravagant part of her antique collection, however, was the section she had squared away simply for containing clocks.
I remember there being all sorts of clocks in that section! She had bracket clocks and decimal clocks and handmade cuckoo clocks in there. For a kid like me, I was always interested in looking at all of them. To this day, I never purchase any digital clocks because I was so intrigued by all the varieties of analog clock that my grandmother had in her store.
My grandfather repaired clocks as a hobby. I remember spending hours in his workshop just watching him tinker with his clocks. He repaired all sorts of timepieces from pocket watches to mantle clocks to the occasional long case clock.
His favorite timepieces to repair were cuckoo clocks. Their inner workings were complicated and delicate. He’d let me peek inside as he pointed out which mechanisms controlled the clock hands and which controlled the music that would play on the hour. Now that he’s passed away, I have those memories to hold on to and cherish.
Gourmet gift baskets are nice, but once you eat the contents the gift is finished. Whenever I attend a housewarming party, I try to give the new residents something they can actually use. Sometimes it’s a piece of cast iron cookware and other times it’s a monogrammed towel set.
A close friend of mine recently became a first time homeowner. He loves German culture and food, so I decided to buy him a housewarming gift that reflected his passion for all things German. In an antique shop I found an exquisite cuckoo clock carved in the Black Forest tradition. I’m sure my friend is going to appreciate the clocks’ heritage and craftsmanship.
For our ten year anniversary my husband and I treated ourselves to a vacation in the Swiss Alps. Not only was the skiing phenomenal, but the accommodations at our chalet were incredible. The architecture in the village we stayed in was stunning and true to the traditional building methods, we learned from a local guide.
I used up both memory cards I’d brought for our digital camera. The photos are evenly divided between images of the unreal landscape and the gorgeous chalets. After scouring through stores full of chalet cuckoo clocks, we finally settled on one that is now proudly chiming in our living room.
We own two cats named Fluffy and Furball. (Yes, I realize the names are pretty stereotypical, but that’s what happens when you let your five-year-old daughter name the family pets). The two of them have a funny tradition that involves our musical cuckoo clocks.
Every hour on the hour the clocks play a musical medley. Wherever Fluffy and Furball are in the home they drop whatever they are doing and rush to the clocks. Then they sit there, very intently, side-by-side and watch the clocks until the music ends. It’s so hysterical! I really need to capture it on video.
My grandmother was a collector of Black Forest cuckoo clocks. When she passed away she had her clock collection divvied up among the grandchildren. I was very pleased with the clock I received because it was one I had always admired as a little girl.
The intricate wood carvings on the clock served as an inspiration for my living room. I found art pieces that reflected the same wood tones and shapes to complement the clock. I also picked a color scheme that I thought properly invoked the Black Forest without seeming too dark.
One of my favorite new television shows is called Grimm. As the title suggests, the show involves characters from the Grimm’s fairy tales. One of the main characters, named Monroe, is a Wieder Blutbad aka a werewolf.
In this version of modern day fairy tales, Monroe is a reformed werewolf. He doesn’t eat meat, he exercises and meditates to keep from going into rages. He is also a professional clockmaker. The show has strong German references – most of the creatures have German names – so I will have to keep my eyes peeled to see if there are any 8 day cuckoo clocks in Monroe’s workshop next episode.