Thursday, May 31, 2012

That "Good for Somethin" Rain

A long day and a long drive in traffic are behind me. Exhausting. I practically collapsed on the comfy couch with feet up, laptop in place and found myself privy to the homes and creative endeavors of talented bloggers galore. I could sit here day and night just ooooohing and ahhhhing over the incredible projects and outcomes. This feet up moment was but a momentary respite, because lawn mowing awaited.

After all, that and a whole list of other chores have to be done. There's no getting around it.

The sun played hide and seek with me from behind an overcast sky which made it the best time to get moving. I didn't feel like working up a lawn mowing sweat in the least, but I knew I'd be glad to have the chore of mowing "the back 40" behind me for another week so I could move on to the next thing.

Just as I was about to peel myself away from the computer, I thought I heard raindrops, and then I knew I heard raindrops. The raindrops became waterfalls pouring off the roof and awnings - a deafening roar...

...and just like that I had an excuse to stay in. The lawn would have to wait. Hmmmm...

I do so love a good excuse!

Now I can do some of the creative things I need to get working on without feeling guilty and take a few minutes to gaze out the window at the falling beads that glisten in the remaining light, and I can relish the electric green that shows up to to wow the early evening with it's snazzy show of color.

The drops were tapping out a beat announcing their arrival to a dry world that, although it often complains about the intrusion, also thrives on the interruption and the gifts it brings which are so desperately needed...

The rain IS good for somethin'.

Many things, actually. My little lovelies out on the back patio and front porch will not be complaining and neither will I.


While they're drinking in the pure, free water, I'll kick back and enjoy a Hershey's with almonds that has been waiting on me, and I'll finish my cherry coke that I put in the freezer a little while ago. It'll be good and slushy now. The plants can have their treat...I'll have mine...mine being the water show and my concessions.

Quite a pair, if you ask me.

So if it's raining where you are and you can't do what you planned and needed or wanted to do...

...make the most of the interruption in your schedule and enjoy the moment, relish the raindrops... gaze at the gullywasher or whatever else comes about with the unexpected intrusion. Go out and take a good look at one of God's finest works of art in motion, then step back in and make the most of the great indoors. After all, I'll just bet you have a project or two you need to get around to...even if it a something everyday/ordinary yet extraordinary like winding down the day with your family, creating a special touch at dinner or by loving on a special someone with a sweet surprise.

The beat goes on as the light dwindles with the ensuing evening. The constant drip and splat and pitter patter offers me a reason to rethink and restep my evening, to anticipate even more the next "blue sky and sunshine" day and to fully appreciate and enjoy the benefits of this life-sustaining liquid artwork God serves up just when we need it most. 

If you're looking for me, I'll be the one with my chin in my hands staring out the kitchen window at the back yard rain-show. 

Sorry, but the chocolate is quickly becoming a thing of the past. You expected otherwise? Silly you.

I'll be at:

Monday, May 28, 2012

Flowers, Finds, Projects and Midcentury Delights

Just because it has been such a nice weekend, I'm in the mood to share a few of my weekend finds and show you how I took the color God has provided and brightened up my patio area. I'll even try not to be wordy, but I certainly can't promise anything.

Newly purchased periwinkles were planted inside a new garage sale find toolbox for some pretty pink and lavender contrast.

Whatever these are, they were cute and cheap. They got planted in the tray that goes to the tool box. Not much depth for them to grow in, but I'm giving it a shot.

Bought and PLANTED Dahlias today too!

Check out the uber cool rolling seat I got for $1. I used it while planting and it was wonderful! I love a practical find, especially one made of metal, all weathered and worn...and on wheels with a spot to set my tools even!

More toolbox periwinkles.

The trusty new rolling seat helped save my back as I pulled all these dead grassy strands out of those two planters. Wow! 

Sweet scene

Now to the exciting finds of the day and the nitty gritty of what I drug home:
Yes, two new beasts made it home with me one at a time. Am I a glutton for punishment or what? They each barely fit. Luckily I got them just about 6 blocks from my house so two trips was no biggie.

My car's back seat has extraordinary powers. It has held numerous unbelieveably awkward and bulky items. I got this cabinet out by myself and didn't ruin the leather seat. Casey was asleep of course and was of no help.

Circular saw was $5.00 with blades, little ladder, $1.00 and clamp light 25 cents, and don't forget the cool rolling seat there on the floor for $1.00.
Oh, sure. Now she's awake and has her feet up! She was none too impressed with my thrilling finds. I actually got a stern lecture from her about how we are trying to clear things out for her sister, my mom and my sister who are coming in a couple of weeks. Well, she's got me there. How will I ever have room for everyone in this little place with all this junk? My house is my workshop after all.

Casey just doesn't understand how much I NEED those metal cabinets.

The chippy white ladder can get together with my other little one and work as a sawhorse team now that I have a circular saw. Woo hoo, because I just pulled apart all the wood I salvaged the other day and I desperately need to get it cut so I can cover an old cabinet with it to make another planter.

But wait...there's more!

Round box with numerous wooden spools of thread in it, a sweet sounding wind chime (been wanting one of those for years), stamper ink and the ladder: $3.00
Toolbox: $1.00
Rolling seat: $1.00
Casters, Paintbrushes, 2 pulleys, hook, spool of wire: $2.00
Nails: 25 cents
Glass jar with lid: 50 cents.
Coffee pot: $1
The coffee pot is not pictured. Thanks to magic erasers (Target brand) I cleaned that stained thing up as if I'd waved a magic wand. It's shiny and beautiful now. Get some magic erasers. You'll thank me.

Got a cool working woodhandled flashlight with a stand. 

At this point, the total for the day was $17.50. Not too bad.

But as you saw, on my way home I found this retro metal cabinet:

And this. 
I was unable to quell my glee. The nice man wanted $14 total for both. Another guy came and started looking at them. I sprung in to action and offered $10. I didn't want to have to mourn the loss; they had to be mine. I probably could have offered $5.00 and gotten them both. Oh well, I'm happy. Mid-century metal cabinets. Yes!
I should have taken a better inside shot. It was disgusting, but I worked hard on it and it is pretty dang clean now.

It has cool retro Contact Paper inside.

Paint, sticker goo and other stuff will need to be removed.

How about this Formica? It so reminds me of the finishes in our house growing up. 

Sweet curves.

I cleaned the big one well. Scrubbing was supposed to continue today as well as garage cleaning and table sanding. Only got as far as table sanding and painting and attaching seats to two chairs that have been unattached for a year. That was a big, big deal for me. Thanks to E.B. (my drill) it is now done. I'm really starting to fall for old E.B.

 Yes, I got the legs back on the table, and sanding has begun on the top.

 There was lots of paint and whatnot on it.

Almost done sanding...but then what? Heck if I know. Any ideas? 

If you are squeamish, you may want to avert your eyes both because of the shame I'm going to divulge regarding the table wash gone awry and the disgustingly huge lizard I'm going to show you. First my shame:

I didn't even bother trying anything on the legs yet. This falls into the "Don't" category.

I worked on the table all day and just let one thing lead to another with some green paint I had on hand. Not pretty. I was limited in my sanding power because I ran out of sand paper right away and didn't want to leave to go to the store, so I kept using worn pieces. I should have just painted it full out. I see a redo in my future. This will HAVE to be painted over, because even Casey made some very expressive facial gestures at it (not positive) when she came home, and she's the one who said she could care less what I did with it or what color it was (even if it was red, purple, green, blue or orange, because she wouldn't ever pay it a bit of mind to it). Now she has an opinion...great.

The good news is...

 Yes! Wheels. The casters I got off the chair by the side of the road the other day fit into the holes on the bottom of these legs perfectly. I was so excited! I think everything should be on wheels! So who cares if I sanded and painted and sanded again all day and now will have to redo... This baby rolls now!

And I leave you with this...this is what I'm up against out on my patio...and he's not the only one. There are "the others", and they procreate at an alarming rate. Help! Someone with a good lizard remedy please leave me a solution. They have overrun my house in both the back and front yard. These guys are eyeing my Rascal as their new habitat. 

Uh uh! Nobody better mess with Rascal! I'll have none of that!

Come and visit over at:

Acknowledge, Remember, Honor, Thank

I am so grateful for those who have served our nation willingly and I'm humbled that so many have given their lives that I might freely live a wonderful life in the United States of America. 

The men and women in uniform today also place their lives on the line for us. We go peacefully and confidently through each day because they have our backs. 

Please remember the fallen.
Remember their sacrifices.
Remember our nation's history.
Create traditions of acknowledgement and honor.
Fly the flag.
Take time to thank those who still serve. 
Their lives are on the line as we go about our days enjoying the blessings of our country.

I am very thankful for those who have, and who would if necessary, give their lives for my freedom. 

God bless America and our American military heroes.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

New Beginnings for My Sandlot Rascal

Just in case you happen upon a rascal in your travels, as I recently did, and you want to adopt him but aren't sure about opening up your home to a wayward street dweller, here is a recipe for rehabbing the little guy so he can become useful and responsible, and an asset rather than a liability.

Step One: Pull one rascal, who has been cavorting with the trash on the other side of town, out of the dirt and gently carry him home in the back seat of your car, and clean him up a bit.
Step Two: Find that wine box you haven't decided what to do with yet.

Step Three: Mix a little paint and water, equal parts.

Step Four: Wash the diluted paint over the wine box wood with any old brush you have on hand.

Step Five: Let is sit a sec and then lightly wipe it off, more so where you want certain characteristics to show through.

Step Six: Paint the rascal how ever you dare - I mean what do you have to lose? You weren't all that sure about him anyway... I don't "dare" much, so I went with white for starters to see how that went over (and I was not careful in the least because I knew where he was headed.)

Step Seven: Then go ahead and play at "daring" just for fun by trying out the aqua colors that you already have on hand, painting them on the drawer fronts. When the first one is too bright, try a different color on the other the end, leave them both as they are, brightness, variation in color and all, just to give it a try.
Step Eight: Select a couple of old faucets or faucet knobs from the drawer where you stash all that junk you just know you're gonna need for a project one day, and which you've been collecting for just such an occasion, constantly assuring the family you really will absolutely need them some time. (Then smirk that "I told you so" grin when you actually do need and  use them.) (I love that part!)

...careful to select just the right ones...

Step Nine: To rig up a way to make a faucet work as a drawer knob, you might use the 1970-something powdered putty mix you borrowed a while back from your neighbor and haven't returned. (I promise, I'm gonna give it back - sometime - But isn't the can just so retro cool?) 

Don't follow the package directions because that doesn't produce a thick consistency as stated, just do what works. Fill the opening of the faucet with putty and let it harden...

Step Ten: Turn the screws into the putty and pray it holds. It'll kinda have to be just for decoration,I assume, because I don't think the putty will hold with much use, and I'll forget and yank on them, I'm sure. We'll see how my rig job does. If it fails, I'll try some other rig, no doubt.

So yeah, well, that's sorta quirky cute and all, and the knobs go with the watery aqua feel, which matches the old door leaning up against the wall, but it's way too crisp and clean looking. Kinda flat and odd for the great outdoors where I intend for the little guy to earn his keep.

So yesterday I added some plants in those drawers...hey, it looks like the faucet could water the plants for me...and no, I hadn't planted them at this point. Today things have already changed. I'll show you that further down.

Now, grab the the wine box you did a paint wash on and set it on top as a tray...

Mmmm...I could use some lemonade about now.

Or you can take the tray off and use the top as a place to set your garden tools.

The colorful blooms are like garden candy!

So I've dressed the wayward little rascal in shades of aqua and I'm making him hold flowers and serve lemonade and tea and take care of the garden tools. You see, I'm just making sure he is truly rehabilitated. I let him wear the faucets as knobs just so he didn't get resentful, feeling like he was having to do all "girl work". Faucets are plenty manly, that and holding the tools, right?

So far, he's been on very good behavior and he hasn't complained a bit.

This tablecloth or dresser scarf, was made by either my mom, Aunt Vernie or Aunt Marie, most likely in the 50's or 60's. I've had it for many, many years.

I know this is a lot of pictures of my little rascal, but I'm just loving these faucets.

So I had a before and after shot yesterday.

Today, However, I went to Home Depot for more plants.

These delicate little yellow flowers took the place of the colorful variety. These sort of spilled over and out, and having all the same color in the drawers offered consistency that seemed more calming. The yellow, I thought, looked nice with the aqua, and just wait until they fill out!

I bought plastic containers and PLANTED the flowers in them...I told ya I would. So do you see anything very special about the little rascal in the new shots from today?

I was so proud of the little guy that when I found some casters today (50 cents for all four- SCORE), I came home and put them right on him (E.B. - my drill - came out to help and he was on his best behavior. We are getting along so much better now. I'm thrilled, because... well don't tell him, but I really NEED him.) So anyway, I didn't want the little rascal to have to sit in any puddles if it rains, then there these casters were on a table at storage unit sale. Sweet! Now, I'm thinking I will put a little bar or something on the bright white empty side to hang a towel. Then I think this little guy will be a new man!

Enough with the faucets already!

So that's the recipe for rehabbing a rascal found face down in the dirt where he had been carousing with his trashy friends on the other side of town. 

I suggest you give it a try some time. It's quite rewarding to help out an unfortunate little bedside table and give it an opportunity in a new home where he will have boundaries and a fresh outlook as he learns to make something of his life.

 I have not figured out how the little guy will hold up under the weather, but one reason I didn't distress him was because I figure he'll weather enough out here. From his past, I'm guessing he can take it.

Besides, now that he has wheels, at least I can roll him under the awning if the weather gets bad for an extended time and I can take the flowers out if needed too. 

If he doesn't take off on his own, I'll know he's happy here.

So it looks like a happy ending. 

Or rather, it's a new beginning. 

Here's a little Sandlot Rascal much like my own that offers a certain sort of inspiration for Rascal's Rehab - in a number of ways... it also happens to be my favorite movie scene of all time.

"Did you plan that?" 
"Course I did, been plannin' it for years."

I'll be sharing my rehabilitated Rascal at:

Funky Junk's Saturday Nite Special