Thursday, August 30, 2012

Thrifty Whites

Have I mentioned I love white in decor?  (Uh ... about a hundred times?)  It's not that I'm anti-color, I just love white as an anchor because it's versatile and serene.

So I was doing the happy dance when I came across these beauties during one of my recent thrift store runs!  I was definitely having a white-is-right kind of shopping day.

I'm not sure about the age of the big pitcher or if it's ironstone; it has an embossed stamp I can't read.  But because the stamp is embossed, and there is a little bit of pitting, I think it's vintage.  This adorable little teapot is English ironstone (marked).  The pitcher was $4 at Goodwill and the teapot was $2 at a local thrift store.

I found a set of 10 of these glasses at The Salvation Army for $1 a piece.  Score!  It was their 40% off sale day.  I also picked up a set of six in pink, which I'll be selling.  Or maybe not.  They're pretty cute.

Twelve milkglass bud vases were waiting for me at another shop (I'm just showing a few here).  Most are Hoosier glass from Indiana or Brody glass from Cleveland, which are collectible.  The prices ranged from 50 cents to $1 a piece for the small vases and $1.50 to $2 for the larger ones.  These are great for wedding decor, or clustered on a large dining table.


I don't think this little bud vase is vintage, but it's very sweet. I got the little candy dish/pedestal from the same thrift shop.

I even found the little wood table-thingy that I'm using for display during my thrift store foray.  I have no idea what it is or what it was used for, but I painted it white and figured I'd come up with something!

That's what so great about white--you can always find a place for it somewhere!

Sharing at:
Faded Charm: White Wednesday
My Romantic Home: Show & Tell Friday
French Country Home: Feathered Nest Friday

Friday, August 24, 2012

Famous Craigslist Addicts, and Weird Blog Randomness

I have a confession to make: 

I have a crush on Robert Pattinson.  Not one of those screaming teenage crushes, obviously.  He's only a few years older than my oldest stepson.  No, it's a combination of his being a talented, handsome guy with a British accent who makes me remember when I was a teenager with crushes, (but I was much too cool to scream, thank-you very much!), and he brings out the romantic in me -- I wish those kids, (meaning Rob and Kristen for those of you not up on your celebrity gossip) could find a way to make it work, because they seemed so happy together, and miserable apart.

People Magazine
But the thing that cemented the crush was I saw him on Jimmy Kimmel the other night.  And he had a confession of his own.

He's addicted to Craigslist!

Rotten Tomatoes

How can you not have a crush on a rich movie star who buys stuff on Craigslist?

So, you see fellow Craigslisters?  It doesn't matter if you're rich or poor; famous, not famous, the Craigslist habit is totally egalitarian. Once you find your first great bargain, you can't stop.

Just a warning.  My own little Public Service Announcement.

And speaking of famous .... errrr .... things .... last year I did a post about these chairs I found on Craigslist for $30 each.  The guy I bought them from told me that "famous butts" had probably sat in them, possibly President Eisenhower.  So I titled my post about them "Famous Butts ... Possibly."

Fast forward to the last couple of weeks, and I've been finding a strange URL showing up as a referring site in my stats.  I clicked on it to see what it was, and let's just say it is not a PG, or even a R-rated site. 

I've been thinking there was some kind of hacking going on. But today I finally figured it out when I looked closer at my  numbers for post pageviews and Google key word searches.  

The key words "famous butts" and my post about the chairs correlate with the referrals from the X-rated site!  So somehow they're all tied together.

I've got to laugh.  I mean really, can you imagine the disappointment of some weirdo trying to find pictures of famous people's naked posteriors only to be linked to my post about chairs I found on Craigslist??!!

Anyway, hope you have a great weekend.  I'm working on some things to show you next week!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Turns Out, Money DOES Grow on Trees

We are surrounded by trees.

Lots and lots of trees.

And I love them. 

I love the birds and critters that call them their home and visit our feeders every morning. 

I love to see the dappled sunlight through their leaves in the spring and summer. 

I love the bright yellow and orange display they provide in the fall.

I love them covered in glistening snow in the winter. 

I love to watch their tops sway slightly in the wind--tree dancing, I call it.

Sigh.  So pretty.

But my love affair with our trees may be at an end. 

Trees get old.  They get diseased.   And then you have to take them down.  Or they fall on their own. Plus, this year we had a "land hurricane" called a Derecho.

And right about now I'm wishing my chosen profession had been to become a tree-chopper.  Do you have any idea how much it costs to take one of these suckers down?

Depending on it's location, what type of wood it is, etc., around here it will cost you in the ballpark of $2,000 to $3,500.  Per tree.

We've had to take down or chop up four trees this year.

We're lucky though.  Our tree guy gave us a bit of a discount because we gave him so much business.  A bulk rate, if you will.   

Four.  You do the math.

We had a nice vacation planned for next month.  We were going to go to Mackinac Island in Michigan.

It looks charming on Mackinac Island.  You ride horses or bikes everywhere.  We've never been. 

But instead, we'll be here.  Yep.  Us and our trees.

I tried to call our tree guy yesterday to ask him a question.  Turns out he's on vacation. 

On another island. 

In Hawaii.


Tuesday, August 14, 2012

It Took a Village ... and Baby Powder

We did it.  It was close, but it got done:  Everything was finished in time for the Dining for Women group last weekend!

I say "we" because my husband, our garden guy and I worked all day Saturday to get things done. It took a village (sorta). 

Front Walkway

The fixed dining room table and missing brackets for the china cabinet didn't get delivered until late Thursday afternoon.  On Friday I unpacked the dining room boxes, made a quick trip to Ikea, went to the supermarket for wine and flowers, and potted new plants to freshen up my front porch and deck containers.

That left Saturday to get rid of the weeds that threatened to overtake the house, mow the lawn and clean the house.  Not a problem, right? 

Here's the thing. We have a lot of pets. And while typically a dog hair dust bunny won't send me over the edge, I'm very conscious of having dogs and cats when people are coming over.  Especially people I don't know well, since I have no idea if they have allergies.  Even though I'd cleaned earlier in the week, the dogs don't stop shedding or tracking in mud just because we have company coming over! 

So after the typical dusting, kitchen cleaning, etc., I washed doggie nose prints off of the windows, vacuumed all floors and furniture, mopped the floors with Murphy's Oil, and -- because I wanted to the newly refinished floors to shine -- followed the mopping by going over the floors again with Orange Glo. Time consuming.

Foyer Vignette

I finished up cleaning around 5:30, and everyone was due to show up at 6:30.  That gave me one hour to take a shower, dress, cut the flowers and put them in vases, and set up the buffet table. Something had to give.

Here's tip, just in case you don't know this trick:  When you don't have time to wash your hair and blow dry it, a little baby powder and changing the side of your part can save the day. Just be careful you don't overdo it, or else you can end up looking prematurely gray. (Or in my case, what might actually be my true hair color if I didn't get highlights every couple of months!)

People started showing up while I was opening the wine and getting the hors d'oeuvres ready. I poured myself a glass and took deep breath. I don't think anyone knew that just an hour earlier I had been sweaty, in grubby clothes, and on the verge of hysteric tears.

And we raised a lot of money for this month's charity.


P.S.  Thanks for all the nice comments on the Living Room refresh!  (If you didn't get a personal thank-you from me it's because you are a "no-reply" blogger and there is no way to get back to you.)

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Living Room Refresh on a Budget

The crisis has been averted.  You can all breathe a sigh of relief.  I know the worry was keeping some of you up at night ...

The book group did not have to sit on boxes during the meeting at my house last week.

Phew, right? 

Other than a few tweaks here and there, I was able to get the living room unpacked and finished.  I'm still working to get the rest of the house in order in time for the Dining for Women meeting on Saturday, but progress has been made!

One big obstacle I have is I still don't have my dining room table. Kind of a problem for a dining event, don't you think? When the packers moved the furniture out to refinish the floors, they broke the table.  They've had it for weeks, and I still don't have it back.  They also lost the pegs that hold the shelves in the china cabinet.  You guessed it--that means I have unpacked boxes of china in the dining room.

Supposedly it's fixed (I've heard that before), and will be delivered tomorrow (keeping my fingers crossed).  At that time they'll pick up the buffet table they broke, which I won't get back in time for Saturday ... 

Uh oh ... I'm starting to hyperventilate again ...

So I'll stop thinking about all of that and show you my "refreshed" living room.

Here's what it looked like before (well, the "before" when it had furniture in it).

And here's what it looks like now.

The only thing new is the sofa.  Which I told you about here. 

The coffee table is this $25 Craigslist find that I painted white. I kept some of the same pieces that were in the room before, but I moved them around.  

Everything else I had in other rooms.  I love shopping my own house--it's so economical!

I moved the rug in from the family room ... which of course necessitates a family room refresh!  I have a couple of big projects planned for that, so that reveal will have to wait awhile.

The round table has a burlap cloth from Ballard Designs on it.  The table on the other side of the sofa is a Craigslist find from a couple of years ago. I did a Gustavian paint treatment on it.

The chair next to the round table is from Miss Mustard Seed.  I bought it at a Lucketts Market a few years ago.  I have a chair I've been planning on painting to go with it, but it keeps dropping to the bottom of my "to-do" list.

I added a glass decanter I found at Goodwill to the crystal one I already had on the sideboard I'm using as a bar, and polished up an old silver tray to hold some bottles. I'm keeping an eye out for one or two more decanters.

And of course, little vignettes here and there.  I usually switch them out seasonally ... or whenever I get bored!

I like the lighter look with the dark coffee table and side table gone--it brightens up the room. There are still some projects I want to do, but it looks much better than the last time I showed it to you!

And with everything mainly white or neutral, I can change out pillows, throws and accessories whenever the mood strikes.

Now on to the rest of the house!

Sharing at:
Savvy Southern Style: Wow Us Wednesday
DIY by Design: Sizzle into Summer
Elizabeth & Co: Be Inspired
Coastal Charm: Nifty Thrifty Tuesday
The Farmhouse Porch: Cowgirl Up!
Faded Charm: White Wednesday
No Minimalist Here: Open House Party
French Country Cottage: Feathered Nest Friday
2805: Potpourri Party
Between Naps on the Porch: Metamorphis Monday
My Romantic Home: Show & Tell Friday