My Find From “Shop Local Saturday”

My favorite local shop, Green Living Resale, has been talking up their warehouse sale for several weeks, and I’ve been excited to go!  Three out of five kids are at the beach with my mom and stepdad, so the hubby and I took two kids with us to see what goodies we could find at the shop and the warehouse.

I’m helping my best friend with the centerpiece for one of the tables for our church’s Women’s Ministry brunch next weekend, so I’ve been keeping an eye out for terrariums and other decorative jars, and they had one in the shop!


It’s the tall one on the right.  The other two I picked up at Marshall’s, which is definitely in my top 3 favorite stores.

Over to the warehouse, we looked at furniture, lamps, pictures, frames, books, beds, and I didn’t see anything I could justify bringing home right now.  Until I saw this:


My husband has faith in my upcycling and refinishing capabilities, but apparently this was too far gone for him.


Which is why I never bring him with me when I want to buy something.  He appreciates the afters and goes along with the befores, but it’s bringing them home that he’s not always on board with.  For $25, I felt like I got a steal of a deal.

I’m excited to show you what I have planned for the desk!  I have a date with a can of CeCe Caldwell paint!

My husband picked up items and put them back down, like an old photo of the original courthouse here in our city, and seriously contemplated a Charlie Chaplin lamp, which gave me an internal freak out, wondering where in the world I could put such a thing to both show it off and not totally clash with the house.  He decided he didn’t know where he’d want it, so it stayed at the shop.  I did seriously think about how I could work that lamp in.  And I did seriously breathe an internal sigh of relief that I didn’t have to figure it out.

Did you have any Shop Local Saturday successes?


My Black Friday Purchase

I’m not really a big Black Friday shopper.  I went out this year with my 9 year old son to three stores for three reasons.  We went to Tractor Supply for a dog bed for our sweet Nya, Walmart for Christmas lights for our tree, and Lowe’s for ornaments (this was my son’s only reason for wanting to come… so he could buy ornaments for his siblings for Christmas).

Finding a new bathroom sink on the $150 budget of selling the old sink proved to be quite a challenge.  I called or stopped by all my favorite antique/secondhand stores, scoured Craigslist and facebook yard sale groups, all to no avail.  In the checkout line at Lowe’s Friday morning, I saw their Black Friday ad for a sink regularly priced at $279 on sale for $199.  Their Black Friday specials were good all weekend, so I grabbed the ad and went home.  The hubby and I agreed on the sink, especially since I had $155 in returns to make to the store.  Including the faucet and other plumbing supplies, we spent $283 on the sink, minus $155, for a project total of $128!

Okay, I realize it was still a $283 project, but the returns certainly eased the pain on my wallet today!

Here’s the obligatory “before” of the sink:

Here’s the “in process” photo:

(I’m sure my husband loves being one of the subjects in my project photos.)

And finally, the sink is in!


Soon I’ll be choosing a paint color, replacing the mirror, (hopefully) changing up the lighting, adding toilet paper and towel holders, and eventually replacing the toilet!  So much to do in such a small room!

How about you?  Any good Black Friday finds?

Selling the Sink!

The house has one bathroom that just doesn’t fit the style of the house.  I knew since before we bought the house that one of the first things I’d do is replace the sink.

Not a bad sink, just not right for this house.  Too modern, no storage (the front doesn’t open at all), and the faucet doesn’t even belong in a bathroom.  Today, it’s going to a new home, and I need to find a sink to replace it.  I’m sticking with my budget of the selling price for this sink — $150.  I’ve been hunting for the right piece for this spot, but no luck yet.

I’ll be back with an update soon (I hope)!

A Bit of Fun on Friday!

A few years ago, I made a book wreath.  After friends saw the wreath, they wanted wreaths made.  I made enough book wreaths that I didn’t care if I never made another wreath of any kind.  Until now.  I was skimming through Pinterest, not looking for anything in particular, when this coffee filter wreath popped up.  We’ve been doing lots of working and not so much “funning” at the new house, and Friday seemed like as good a day as any to do something fast and pretty!

With steps that sounded MUCH simpler than my book wreaths and a shopping list that totaled $2, I was willing to give this wreath a try.  My grandmother drove up to my house to make note cards with my kids, so I thought I’d have my own craft time during theirs!

Start to finish, the wreath took two hours to make, instead of the original poster’s one, which I’m sure has nothing to do with my four year old taking the filters to pretend they were hats or cupcake liners or to see how they float down to the floor when you drop them.  I still need to buy the ribbon to hang it, but I like!  It’s going to look great in the foyer!  (I’ve been picking up and changing up some furniture for the foyer, so I can’t wait to show off the finished room!)

Plumbing Woes and Plumbing Successes

 When I met with the plumbers at the new house this week, they said our pipe picked a bad week to break because they’re absolutely slammed.  Needless to say, a crack in the main drain line leading out of the house is NOT a good crack.  Espeically when it’s cast iron and connects to an elbow that goes into concrete in the basement floor.

They’ll need to heat the pipes to melt the lead, remove the cracked section of pipe, and install a new piece of cast iron pipe.  At any point, the elbow could break from the heat, so our plumber (who’s in his late 30s, I’m guessing) brought in an older plumber, who laughed about the houses on the street all having a “big ‘ol mess of lead” in the basements.  We’re praying the elbow doesn’t break, because it could quickly turn a $250 repair into a $2,000 repair if they have to start busting up the concrete.  (Let’s not even get into the chipping paint.  I know.)


This is the strangest little bathroom, by the way.  I’m certain it’s not original to the house, and it’s the only section of the basement that has walls made of wood siding.

In better plumbing news, my hubby was able to remove the leaking garbage disposal from the kitchen sink, which was also tied into the dishwasher and therefore making it unusable.  It was connected to the small middle sink, and just needed a new pipe with dishwasher hookups.  Not that the dishwasher is really usable with such a large crack in the main drain line.  But hey, small victories, right?

Curtain Crisis Averted!

When you order what is supposed to be a continuous bolt of 9 yards of curtain fabric, what you do NOT want to find at 127″ into the bolt is this:

With each panel cut at 108″, this seam meant I lost 19″ of length I really didn’t have to lose.  19″ meant I had no allowance for hemming along the top, and just barely hemming at the floor.  It meant I had 98.5″ of length per panel for a total height of 98″ needed.  Thankfully, while trying to hang panels on the first window (before I found the seam), my hands were aching from trying to turn screws in the wood, since pre-drilling behind the cornice boxes was impossible.  I cursed the existence of curtain rod holders and settled for stapling the fabric to a pre-existing board above the window frame.  This decision would save me from needing several inches for the rod.

I contacted Joann’s customer service line to let them know they need to ensure fabric will be a continuous roll since it’s not stated it won’t be (some fabrics give a length cap for continuous roll –typically 30 yds– and this one did not).

All in all, the crisis was averted, and I’m the only one who will ever know the hemming behind the cornice boxes isn’t finished.  I still need to hem the bottoms of the curtains, but I’m letting exhaustion win and I’m settling for having them pinned for a day.

living room curtains

What do you think?

More Lighting!

My best friend is the type of person who makes mental notes of things I mention wanting, then randomly texts me with pictures to see if they fit into my current projects.  This is great for me, because taking five kids into antique shops during the week doesn’t always work out so well, and she has a little more flexibility with her schedule.  She’s never offended if I respond that it’s not what I had in mind.  She’s the best personal shopper ever!

Last week, I got a text with a couple of pictures.  One of a red crushed velvet lamp shade covering an ornate black fixture with red glass details (um, yeah, not my style, and apparently was only texted to me because the woman at the shop insisted) and one of a double arm brass sconce with pressed glass globes.  I swooned over the lovely feminine details and made a mental note to justify this light fixture to the hubby by pointing out that there were no chains involved.  He has a serious loathing of light fixtures with chains.  I apologized in advance for the dining room fixture.  And promised no more chains.  At least for awhile.

Here’s the picture I received of the first piece of the girls’ bathroom redo:

I was finally able to make it to the shop on Saturday, and saw the price tag of $40.  The realistic side of me argued that $40 was probably reasonable for the light fixture, but the frugal-always-looking-for-a-deal side of me argued that I thought I could do better.  The shop owner threw out $25, tax included, so the globes were wrapped, a box was found, and the light and I made the short trip to the house.

I now have a new shop to check out semi-regularly, and a start on the girls’ bathroom makeover!  Because let’s face it, this:


really doesn’t have a lot of femininity going for it.

Washer Hook-Ups: Check!

It’s the weekend, and weekends mean tackling bigger projects.  My husband’s dad came up on Saturday to see the new house, and we then recruited my best friend’s dad to make sure we didn’t flood the house supervise the washer/dryer project, since he’s done this several times already.  The current washer hookups are attached to a cement sink in the basement, and the idea of moving a washer and dryer down the narrow stairs, and then carrying laundry for 7 people up and down the stairs each day provided plenty of motivation for finishing this project as early as possible.

After removing the sink, cabinet, mirror, and top layer of drywall, we were left with a (nearly) blank canvas.

To work on the washer, they removed a large section of drywall for access to redo the water and drain lines.  Water was turned off both inside the house and at the street to make sure we didn’t spring a leak mid-project.  The water lines leading out of the wall were cut and new, taller copper lines were soldered in.  The drain line was turned and attached to a new PVC pipe.  All three lines were brought up to a new recessed box.

Scrap wood was placed in the former cabinet “hole.” From the looks of things, someone installed the cabinet, then poured cement over the entire floor.  Removing the cabinet left a 1 3/4″ deep space where the washer needs to sit level.  This is obviously not a permanent solution, but it’ll do until I’m ready to focus on the total overhaul of the laundry room.

When we turned on the water again, the guys got to celebrate because NO LEAKS!!

Just in case it sounds like we have this whole renovation thing under control, this part of the project took three trips to Lowe’s, the discovery of running water in every bathroom from children turning on faucets while the water was shut off (causing a separate leak downstairs), and the project that should’ve taken four hours is turning into two days.  Still, it’s rewarding to see the progress!

Up next, we’ll be running the new wiring and exhaust for the dryer.  Oh the joys!  And I can’t wait to show you the beauty I found this weekend!

Uncluttered Christmas

I’m a purger by nature (and a bit of nurture, too).  My mom is a purger.  My dad is a purger.  My husband’s parents are both NOT purgers, so it’s taken him some time to understand the reasoning behind my throwing open a closet door and announcing “Let’s get rid of half of the stuff in here!”  Does he really NEED thirteen coats?

My love of purging applies to my kids’ toys, too.  Which makes Christmas difficult for me.  I don’t like buying toys that have a limited play life, knowing I’ll be loading up donations in just a few months.  I guess that’s a little something from my dad.  He once literally dumped the contents of a junk drawer into a box, wrapped it, and gave it to my nephew for Christmas.  Before you call “Scrooge” on him, my dad was completely stumped on what to get a kid who has everything, and figured it would at least provide temporary entertainment.  IT DID!!!  All of the adults, myself included, were laughing hysterically as we pulled things out of the box.  I remember my aunt pulling thumb tacks out of the box, howling with laughter and half-fussing at my dad for including those in a gift for a preschooler.

Now, I have FIVE (almost six) KIDS.  We give each child three gifts, because fifteen new things from us, plus umpteen gifts from relatives still makes a nice stack of presents under and around the tree!


Every year, the kids make lists of things they’d like, and every year, we see the lists gradually shift from “I want every toy in this catalog!!!!!!!!” to “I could really use a _________.”  This year, with us working on the new house and packing things up at the old house, I’m really trying to focus on (mostly) consumable gifts for the kids.  Things that are meant to be used up and therefore not becoming next year’s purge.

As our gift to all of our kids, we’re giving them a membership to a fantastic children’s museum.  There is so much to explore for all of our kids, and they love going so much, it just makes sense.

My firstborn, who is into all things artsy, vintage, and now making tea in my small cast iron teapot, has asked for a locket and tea.  I shop at Republic of Tea for our teas, and decided on Dragon Oolong, Dragon Well, and British Breakfast.  (She’s also into dragons. And prefers loose leaf.)  For her locket, I found this lovely piece on Etsy and knew she’d love it!  Not the typical locket, and she won’t be limited to choosing two pictures.

For my second child, he’s very much into Legos and Lego Hero Factory and train sets and Star Wars.  My logic of “But you have so many of them already, do you really NEED more?!” falls on deaf ears.  Truthfully, he’d probably be happy with the contents of a junk drawer.  Of course, he’d build something from the junk and refuse to ever let me get rid of it.  The house we bought has a gigantic train table in the attic, so we’re buying more track to go with the set he’s been waiting to take out of the box for two years.

The other three are the tricky ones.  They’re still very into toys, but aren’t asking for new ones, either.  Coloring books and crayons would go over well, but then I struggle with feeling like I’ve totally ripped them off.  I’d get them the crafty kit things, except they’d want to keep them forever, and I can’t do that, either.  Now I’m just running out of time to buy gifts since I do most of my shopping online and on Etsy.  (Do you think the girls would let me count a bathroom light fixture as one of their gifts?  A friend of mine found one that I need to check out this weekend!)

Demo Time!

Honestly, demolition isn’t my thiiiing.  I like construction, making things pretty, and NOT feeling a coating of dust on my teeth.  (I can’t be the only one who feels like I’m eating demo dust, right?!)

However, this is just not pretty.  It isn’t original to the house doesn’t really have a great layout, and good gravy, could this house have any more mirrors?!  They. Are. Everywhere.

This room was originally the kitchen, before the addition was built in the 60’s.  And now it’s going to become my laundry/sewing room.  Behind Mirror #2, there’s a large closet with shelving for all of my sewing and craft supplies.

First things first, we just don’t want to move the washer and dryer down a narrow set of stairs to the basement to the current hookups.  Which means this needed to happen:

Hubby pulled out the cabinet and discovered exactly what he’d hoped for!  A perfectly placed hole under the cabinet for him to work with as he’s running new wiring up from the basement!  We taped and removed the gigantic mirror and decided to remove the drywall and replace it with new instead of trying to remove the glue.  Picking your battles is important, and I do not have any desire to fight with glue.

We also wanted to remove the now incomplete section of tile.  Hubby started unscrewing screws and removing nails, because who uses only one of those for hanging drywall when a nice mix of the two is so much fun?  What did we discover behind the drywall but…

More drywall!  The tile was mounted onto a piece of drywall and attached to a second sheet of drywall beneath, and the drywall covered in glue was also layered on top of another piece of drywall.

Not a bad accomplishment for a couple of hours at night!  I love when a project is easier -and cheaper- than anticipated!

We still need to bring the water and drain lines up a couple of feet, run new wiring from the breaker to the dryer hookup, and paint.  I have grand plans for this room in the near future, but I’ll be satisfied with having access to a laundry room on the main floor!