Monday, September 24, 2012

Where Angels Go, Trouble Follows

Often when I'm having trouble with something, I'm reminded of a movie I saw as a kid when I was probably about 8 or 9. It was called, Where Angels Go, Trouble Follows.

The "angels" were girls from St. Francis Academy and the Mother Superior was always being given fits by one of the young nuns in the bunch. From my recollection, they had a lot of misadventures. The name of that movie comes to mind often, not because I'm angelic, but because trouble follows despite my best intentions sometimes.

This time the "trouble" began with an impromptu run through of the neighborhood on trash day about 2 1/2 weeks ago.

This round-topped table caught my eye despite the fact that it was barely visible underneath some broken rattan furniture and other sundry and unattractive trashy counterparts. Despite cobwebs underneath and around the legs, which were thick enough for a scary Halloween display, AND the fact that it seemed to have been used as a lizard latrine (those darn lizards!), it finally submitted to being wrangled partway through the back door of my car - just barely, but not without giving me a little attitude in the process. Thankfully, I have tweaked my own attitude with time, proving in this instance to be a match for it.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

The Fridge Got in the Way

I had hoped to get a post up about the table I finished working on yesterday. However, as some might say, "Life gets in the way". For me, today, it was the fridge that got in the way.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

...And How Was YOUR Day?

Today, I've been working on transferring an enlarged ink jet graphic to the round table I found in the trash...

... and how was YOUR day?

I hope to finish picking up the pieces (literally) and see about bringing this project to a close tomorrow. I'll show and tell as results allow.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Somebody Stop Me!

Why? Because yesterday morning after church, I went back to that same sale from Saturday one last time. (Yes, that makes four times. I know!) I had to. The instrument case was haunting me. It was only a dollar after all, so with a good night's sleep and a full day of rational consideration about this weighty matter, I realized that it was too good a deal to pass up if it was still there. The estate sale was still going on, and it was one of the few stragglers still sitting in the garage looking woebegone and leftover, so I lugged it home. I'm the proud owner of another somethingorother to go with all the whatchamacallits that I have already introduced to my life and my family.

Before I show it to you, here's a shot of the shabby chair I drug home from the trash a couple weeks ago and whose seat I ripped off and threw in the trash, which left a gaping hole. Not much good for sitting.

But great for framing up some pretty little yellow lovelies.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Couldn't Leave Well Enough Alone

Leaving well enough alone is apparently not in my make-up. I suppose this fact should not surprise me, yet I continue to find myself retracing my steps and revisiting treasures I have left behind. I can't seem to get it right the first time.

After forcing myself up and out the door despite a torrential downpour this weekend, I spent only $5 at one garage sale and $2 at another, and headed home. Feeling like a gambler who was ahead, I took my winnings and escaped, heading to my own front door by 8:00 a.m. before I had a chance (or so I thought) to get lost in the morning, the moments and the deals. Feeling pretty good about my restraint, the work to clean everything up began right away, because I like to enjoy this stuff without the ick factor to haunt me.

At those sales, a mini treasure was to be found inside the first item I bought. For $2, I purchased a metal file box. It was unusually heavy, but only had some old file folders in it. I looked through each folder when I got home, just in case something might have been left behind, and bingo, there it was, a form, hand written and dated 1954, with another small withholding form stapled to it.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Shopping the Avenue

The streets were thick with junk this evening, and I went out shopping those avenues, drives and boulevards looking for fantastic hardware for the chest of drawers I've been working on. However, all that came my way was an array of wood knobs attached to the drawers of a dresser that was way too big for my backseat, and round wood knobs were not the kind of fantastic I was hoping for.

Family is coming over tomorrow night so dragging anything home that would impede our ability to function in this already small house of ours wasn't going to work, especially since I've been frantically shoving as much as possible out of sight the past two nights. That means a little sewing room and bathroom are crammed to the gills. There's still stuff where stuff doesn't belong in a normal living scenario, and there is more furniture to move out of the way tomorrow. The backyard can hide some things for a few hours if needed though, right?

Even with my spacial concerns, on the way home today, I was thinking I wanted to try and find some metal before the guys with trucks come around and snag everything (thinking the metal I want would be flat things that could hang on a wall or slide behind other things or lie flat for inconspicuous storage). Then my neighbor across the street and over a few houses just happened to put this out to the road:

 So much for flat and inconspicuous!

One of the wheels was rusted off, but someday, somehow, I could certainly find a way to fix that, right? What a great display cart! For now, the wheel has just been set back on so it doesn't look like a train wreck. It's not sturdy, but at least you can see its potential. If it's too much of a pain to fix, the parts could be used separately for other purposes.

The wheel makes a nice accent all on its own, don't you think? And who knows what the flat metal part of the cart could become. Certainly time would tell, and broken into parts, this piece would be less obtrusive as well. Hmm... I do like the wheels!

So what do you think, fix it and leave it as a cart or disassemble it for parts?

Oh, and just so you know, I could have also had an older barber's chair on the way home from work today. Seriously... there out by the curb at someone's house. I've actually had my eye out looking for one, but then when I passed it, I couldn't justify bringing it to live with us right now. It was really grungy looking and the arm was broken. I'm sure it was fixable, and I have wanted one for quite some time, but again, there will be people in the house. Sometimes the timing is just not right. Anyway, surely by now the metal hunters have taken it. I should put it out of my head. Then again, I usually cut my kids' hair myself. We could really USE a barber chair! What was I thinking...or not thinking? I never originally thought of getting it to actually use for our own haircuts. I just wanted an old one because they are cool. Dang, I'm all about practical finds, and besides, practicality is a great excuse to bring home junk, especially if it's cool and free!

It's official. I should have brought it home! Now comes the junk REMORSE.

Don't think I haven't contemplated going back to check on it even though it's late. I'm really curious to see if it survived the evening, although it is highly doubtful.

Note to self...remember to pick first and ask questions later. I can always toss it back out if I decide it's no good. Wouldn't be the first time. So why can't I seem to remember that in the moment? I suppose it's the competing thoughts that are always swirling through my head, which include making sure not to run a stop sign or worse, among other things! I'm thinking I need to create a cute little reminder motto that could be posted on my dashboard...

Pick first, toss later!

That's right, just what I need... another project.

Mop it Up Mondays @ I Should Be Mopping The Floor
Home Sweet Home @ The Charm of Home
Feathered Nest Friday @ French Country Cottage
Fridays Unfolded @ Stuff & Nonsense

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

We Remember for A Reason

Please take some time today to remember the attacks of 9/11 and their significance.

We said we'd never forget. 

The World Trade Center Towers
(Screenshot from video)

The Pentagon
(Public Domain Wikipedia)

Shanksville, PA
(Public domain image - Wikipedia Commons)

The media and the current administration have distracted from the significance of what happened that day 11 years ago. They call our enemy an overseas contingency and refer to 9/11 now as a "day of service".

Keep watch over our America. 

Islamic terrorists are still out to destroy our nation.


Here is a compilation of newscasts from the morning of September 11, 2001. The footage of the attacks is now rarely shown on national television.

Please watch and remember.

Sunday, September 09, 2012

Painting's Easy, Decisions Are Hard

With that admission, the vanity that came to live with us from a garage sale two weeks ago has been finished for about a week. Woo hoo! However its reconstruction was not without a labor of love via the usual spat of decision dilemmas.

Formerly dressed in mermaid attire:
The sanding and painting was fairly quick enough, although, never underestimate the amount of time things take when there are lots of pieces and legs...and that slick spray paint was not all that interested in being sanded off!

Thursday, September 06, 2012

Glorious Disaster

Their glory may be a bit underwhelming at the moment, and "disaster" may outshine "promise", but that's the nature of this game. I've already cleaned everything up and drug it to the back yard now, so after a short rest of my lower back, the neighbors will be enjoying the sound of my sander at work for a while.

Yes, I have my work cut out for me, as if I didn't already, and I'd be lying if I wasn't a bit concerned about where I was going to put all this stuff. [Yes, girls - my daughters - I know, I know.] But this is what it is. Gotta strike while the garbage pile awaits and the stuff is free. We'll deal with where to put it all later.

The burn and water damage on the top and the scent of stale cigarette smoke came along with this piece. This is the match to the 9 drawer dresser that was standing on its head and which I couldn't get on Monday. Same apartment. They seem to be ditching stuff one piece at a time. I have redone another table top with a similar problem before and I actually like the character it gave the finished result, so we'll see how this comes out and whether or not I can get rid of the cigarette smell.

Best find of the day! 

The guy who put this out with the table and the long piece of wood and a bunch of other stuff I didn't take, also had some little electronic things, like a handheld TV, that were new in the package (from quite a while back), but I just didn't feel like dealing with that. This little lady, however, was another story. 

Well kids, if not for blogging, I might actually get something done on this glorious disaster. So, I hate to show off and run, but if I don't get crackin' and beat the heat and rain, you may never see the final results of any of this stuff.

Plus I may have some "splainin' to do" when Casey wakes up and sees the latest additions to the household. Yes, it's getting a bit crowded in here (although the last two things I redid, she immediately wanted - so maybe she'll cut me some slack). The unfolding of the day will tell that tale.

However, I think I even saw my little hula doll shaking her head at me.

Ah well, I'm shaking my head at  me too.

Mop it Up Mondays @ ISBMTF
Nifty Thrifty Sunday @ Nifty Thrifty Things
Sunday Show Off @ Twigg Studios
Feathered Nest Friday @ French Country Cottage

Wednesday, September 05, 2012


You may remember a couple of weeks ago that I created a concoction that was supposed to solve my mosquito woes. According to the email my friend received, if we mixed this certain potion, which you can read about HERE, and left it in a corner for two weeks, when we lifted the black fabric cover, we would be astounded by the number of dead mosquitoes trapped by what I have dubbed this "diabolical mosquito potion".

After a week, I had to know if it was working, so I peeked. Nothin'.

Today, I went to do the final reveal and since many of you wanted to know if this worked, here is what I saw:

That would be...


All that's in there is the potion. Not a single mosquito gave its life to my cause. What a crock and a waste of time. I wanted massive mosquito deaths! All I can say is that with all the yeast in there, at least it did smell like fresh baked bread in the house once I opened it up.

So, I now know one mosquito remedy that doesn't work.

The past two days I've been nearly eaten alive, so next up I'll attempt my next mosquito experiment. I've brought home some dryer sheets from my friend's house, and I'm giving the "keep a dryer sheet with you" antidote a try, which so many people have recommended.

I'm a mosquito magnet, so I can't imagine a dryer sheet's gonna beat out the alluring scent of my ankles, but I'll be sure to let you know!

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Outrunning the Trash Truck

It was Thursday morning, almost 9:00 a.m. Why hadn't I made an early morning trash run? I was already so busy I had completely forgotten what day it was.

I took off running (actually driving) and made time, aiming for the side of town where the trash trucks may not yet have plundered MY potential treasure trove.

I was in luck. The streets were laden with fresh rejects awaiting a picker's eye to spot and rescue them.

Unfortunately my back seat couldn't hold all I wanted to add to my stockpile, so I had to hightail it home after loading up the first time. I took armfuls of new, unfinished wood from the underside of a bunkbed as well as the head boards, a basket with handles, a tray, some weathered fence posts...

 ...the drawers for a dresser, which was unfortunately no where to be seen itself.

Then my eyes landed on this wonderful old pedestal phone table which was missing its drawer. No matter, I thought, it has cool hardware and maybe I could figure out something to do about the drawer space. At the last second, I happened to spot a couple of little wood drawers over in a bin, snagged them, thinking they would make cool trays or something, and ran it all home so I could clear out the car and head back to that same pile for the shabby chair with the curvy legs that needed me. Turned out that the two little drawers belonged to the phone table. Glad I picked them up!

The trash truck was closing in, so I had to rush. There was also a great 9 drawer, late 60's early 70's dresser about 4 apartments down from the pile I was plundering, and it was standing on it's head hoping I would take notice and stop to perform a sort of 911 rescue and recovery on it. Well, believe me, I noticed, and I really wanted to help it out, unfortunately there was no way to get that sweet thing in the car. It was long, lean and drawer-rich, with enough detail to have some real fun with. It would have been a dream to redo, but alas, my car's backseat has its limits.

Sometimes a girl could use a second set of hands to help with the heavy lifting. Mainly I just want someone along to share in the shame when the hefty load won't fit after struggling with it, because an audience tends to show up, watching with amusement, intrigue and that quizzical look that says they are trying to comprehend what exactly I would want that for and what kind of desperation I must be in to dig through other people's garbage piles. When you have to send it back to the curb to await the trash men, it's a real bummer, an epic fail...sheer shame. I prefer to have someone with me at such moments to deflect all that. You feel a bit less visible if someone else is there to absorb some of the onlooker stares.

I should certainly have loved to have had that piece. I hate missing out on large old dressers! I'm having picker's remorse about it. It plagued me all day yesterday. Another one bites the dust. After all, it would have been free.

Distressed Donna's words about getting a truck still ring in my head weekly as the discards, shabby gems and timeworn classics lie unplucked from their resting places. I SHOULD start scounting the road for old trucks for sale. If we're gonna open a shop, I'm not going to be able to afford passing up fantastical free stuff just because my back seat is limited.

On another note, last I left you on Saturday, I had regretfully driven away from a French door that I was unable to get into my car. Well, I'm happy to report that I went back by while returning to a yard sale for these leaded glass sidelights...

...and the French door was still there! Note: Lynette said the sidelights were definitely worth the asking price, and that we should have them, so I hightailed it back and was able to get the woman (hesitantly) to go down on her price! Woohoo! Leaded glass and heavy wood, and they were under 7 feet and fit in my car, end to end. While they look pretty spectacular in the light of this photograph, the brown is just not cutting it and the intent is to paint them white. The green patina of the leading would look great with a distressed white finish. Meanwhile, Lynette was able to come to my rescue in regard to the French door, and we loaded that baby up and delivered it to her storehouse of goodies. I was happy to see she had a fantastic stash going of her own!

So aside from these roadside junkfest finds, we have had quite the busy time adding to our stockpile today. I headed out yesterday morning on an impromptu trip to check the curbside in a neighboring town. It was 8 a.m. and my goal was to be home by 8:30 so I could start right in working my projects for a full day of glorious results. Along the way, I encountered a wreck of a 3 drawer chest I couldn't fit in my car. I snagged the drawers (only two of them had hardware, but I loved it) and texted Lynette to see if she was going to be out and about. It was early. I sent the text and drove on. As I went, I started finding other "too big for the backseat" things, texting my finds to her as I went. Then I started to head home, stopping to pick up a really weathered (but ├╝ber cool) chair that I had spotted the evening before but hadn't picked up at the time because I was in a rush. Luckily, I still had room for a chair.

It was National Empty Chair Day yesterday, so it worked out perfectly that I got this one. It sat out in the front yard all day.

Check out this glorious shabby detail:

But back to my story. Lynette called as I was heading home and she was on her way.

Hurray! Lynette to the rescue! We met up, and after she got the dresser and a pallet and unloaded them at my house, we took off to see what else awaited.

The three drawer chest dressed up in a gaudy outfit, yes, but we can fix that. 

Check out that leg!

It turned out we found quite a bit, and we loaded Lynette's car with tons of wood drawers, furniture legs, three clay pots, a yard stick. Then we spotted a huge, 2 column white shelving unit that would be perfect in our shop. However, there was no way it would fit in her car, so we drove on and spotted these amazing wood folding chairs.

We've never seen any like them (and of course I didn't get a shot of the detail, so you can't tell how cool they are - they have a delicate cutout design on the seat backs, and the chairs are padded). We were so excited. Then, we spotted an old boat, like a dingy, about 8 or 10 ft. long, kinda weathered. We had to drive on with remorse hanging over us because we couldn't fit it in.

As you can imagine, after acquiring all of this, there has been a lot of hauling, cleaning, sanding, and along the way, a few stops at places like Dunkin Donuts' drive through, a consignment shop and Goodwill. Needless to say I wasn't home by 8:30. Try 12:30. We scored the goods, though, and the loss of time only ramped up my work ethic.

Lynette and I each took charge of some of the finds. The good news was that I had two sweet college students who were off school and they offered their free time to work projects with me. I set them to work scraping the drawers of the three drawer chest. They sat out in the heat and got it done!

The layers of paint were elastic-like and peeled somewhat easily in places; it had to come off. That took a while. While they did that, I glued and clamped the phone table that was bowing and did the same to one of the dresser drawers. There weren't enough clamps, so I used a heavy metal pot filled with rocks and plants to assist me. Hey, whatever works!

Then I scraped and sanded the top of the dresser, sanded the drawers after the girls were done, picked up mushy avocados that had fallen from my tree, got stung by a wasp, and on and on. All in a day's work.

Time does not allow me to tell of the glories of the day before and the final touches that I'm pleased to say were put on the vanity I got a week ago. I also worked with the drawer fronts I salvaged and started another new project with plates that I got at Goodwill. There is fabric ready to go for another project, and all the while that was going on over the weekend, Casey was busy with some design work of her own in her bedroom. My fingers are crumpled from the scraping and sanding, the sewing and the painting and waxing. My back is crying out for rest.

I'll pick up there next time and show you the progress we've made.

For now, it's time to stop trying to outrun the trash man. I have to get back to the paying job.

I'll be sharing this at:

Thrifty Treasures @ Southern Hospitality
Nifty Thrifty Sunday @ Nifty Thrifty Things
Sunday Show Off @ Twigg Studios
Creative Things Thursday @ The Vintage Farmhouse
Cowgirl Up @ Cedar Hill Ranch
Wow Us Wednesdays @ Savvy Southern Style
Be Inspired @ Elizabeth & Co.

Saturday, September 01, 2012

Treasure Awaits

I went on a trash day junkfest the other morning and scored some really great stuff. I started a post about that, but I've been busy at work for the past two days remaking the week's hauls and messing with the new trash. Unfortunately nothing's quite finished yet so I can't show you that. 

So instead, here's a little look at what I hauled in this morning at one yard sale.

All this for a total of $10. 

Suitcase: $1.00
Mirror: $1.00
Sugar & Creamer: $1.00
Three tiered tray: $2.00
Salt shakers loose: $2.00 for all
Silver lidded salt shakers in the box: $3.00

The keys to the suitcase were in a little pouch inside. Yea!

Well, today is the day we set as our deadline for picking a shop name. Hmmm... we'll see where that takes us. We are also headed South to see some cool shops down there in a revitalized area no one would previously have wanted to go. I also discovered there's an "Alley" Sale way down South, and there was some sweet stuff in the pictures. Although, I doubt we'll make it there in time to score any of it. Hopefully we can at least go check it out.

I also found a cool French door on the side of the road this morning but couldn't get it. It was huge and heavy, and sadly I had to drive away with picker's remorse due to lack of space and muscle. It was way too early to call anyone. Someone came up right after me (in a truck!). 

[sniffle, sniffle]

I drove away quickly so I didn't have to see someone else take what could have been mine.

The day's unfolding, treasure awaits.