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Sunday, May 31, 2009

Sun Bleached Vintage Linens

I really love vintage linens. This set is missing Wednesday. I need to find her to complete the set. Wednesday, where are you??

This set has just been washed and hung in the sunshine. No, not to dry necessarily but to be bleached of some of the small yellow or brown stains that happen when fabric is stored for long periods of time. I've found nothing better than the sun for bleaching whites.

How to:
1.) Wash, as you usually would. I use laundry detergent and borax.
2.) When done washing, hang outside in the bright sunshine.
3.)When dry, marvel at their brightness.

Try this with tomato sauce stains, too.

Sunday Breakfast

As soon as we woke up this morning, we knew we needed a good breakfast. My youngest daughter isn't feeling well today. I suspect that yesterday was too much activity on too little rest for her. We need to remember to live normally, but go easy. Ok, Mom has made a mental note to remember that.

Our garage sale went very well. I didn't even place a paid advert in the classifieds this time and still had pretty good traffic. It's better with the advert, but I can't complain about the results because they were good! Several neighbors stopped by to chat, then browsed and then re-homed our treasures. We quit by 11 am and went out for lunch while we waited for daddy to get off work.

Now that our backyard is cleared of unused items, we can commence the planning of our make-over. I have my eye on some real vintage wicker furniture with a simple shape that would look good viewed from inside the house as well as out in addition to being comfy and useful. That's a beautiful situation all the way around!

Friday, May 29, 2009

My Own Garage Sale Purge

I am in the middle of clearing out our living space. The garage sale I'm setting up for tomorrow morning is proof that I am ready to clear the slate! Homes feel better when you've whittled down all the excess baggage. I've been looking forward to lightening the load and making changes. There is one major reason why most of this stuff can't stay. It's because I am holding myself to "Love It Or Ditch It" and I don't love any of this stuff so much that I need it clogging up my house and/or yard. (I've decided not to wait to have the backyard I crave. There is no time like the present!)

I do have guidelines to this rule, however. The rule doesn't mean that I get to keep stuff I love even if it's stuffed into the back of a closet. If it's in a closet stashed away, then I'm not loving it, am I? My mental rules go something like this:

1.) Items must be used frequently.

2.) Item must make me/us happy.

3.) If item has been forgotten for a time, then it must be re-evaluated.

If I only drag it out for a holiday then I can probably let it go. Other then the need for new dinnerware, I've pretty much gotten my kitchen whittled down to the items I use most. I love opening my cupboard doors and not have a ton of plastic sippy cups rain down on me. Life is good.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Additional Inspirations

I've just updated the blog roll over there on the left to include a couple more sources of inspiration. One of my new favs is called Down To Earth and I really believe the blog owner is a down to earth lady. She's a wonderful influence for those people like me who want to learn how to do things for ourselves.

Beach Vintage just makes me drool. I'd be ever so comfortable lounging in any of the rooms featured on that blog. Heck, even hunting for some of the treasures pictured there makes my heart beat a little faster in anticipation of the hunt!

Feel free to browse through Simple, Green, Frugal Co-op and Small Notebook.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Auction Treasure

Last weekend I was at the auction gallery again. This particular auction can run quite late, 1 a.m. is fairly typical. Two weeks ago I saw this blue enameled lamp on a table just waiting it's turn to be auctioned. It didn't come up 2 weekends ago and I forgot about it until this last weekend when I saw it again. Friday night was my night for winning bids because that lamp finally came up. I had a little fight for it, but I won it for $10! It's perfect for the bedroom and a particular bed I made a post about a few weeks back. I have so much fun hunting down the room particulars piece by piece. Slowly it's all coming together. The shade is one I cannibalized from a set of buffet lamps, but I think it works ok with this blue one.

What else did I bring home?? Well lets see...there was all the Pampered Chef kitchen stuff. You know, batter bowls, strainers, measuring cups etc. I also brought home the cutest little Duncan Phyfe (or Fife) dresser. I love the serpantine drawer fronts on these dressers! Oh, you know there was also several pieces at this auction of Heywood Wakefield furniture that sold for way cheap. Unfortunately that Mid-Century Modern look isn't me or I'd have bought it myself. It's amazing how auctions are an under utilized resource. You don't know what you're missing! Get on over to Auction and check to see what's going in your area. Pack a lunch and make a day of the ultimate in recycling!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Feathered Friends

When we're at home, one of our little amusements is to watch out the kitchen window at the visitors to the bird feeder. Right this second I hear the call of the Red Winged Blackbird. He's not my favorite visitor because he wants to hog the whole feeder and scares off my Indigo Buntings pair. That old blackbird would empty the feeder if I let him. He flings the food all over the place making a terrible mess. Our Cardinals usually come and do some clearing up under the feeder when they get the chance.

We've had a yellow bird visiting but we can't get a good look at it. We have suspicions that it's a yellow warbler, but we're not positive. Our very favorite visitor flying past is a little Hummingbird. This little guy or gal had been stopping by the Pansies, giving the flowers little bird smooches. I'm not sure if the Pansies are a flower that will feed a Hummingbird, but I hope that little bird keeps visiting! They're just so sweet and tiny. As for the Buntings, I've been seeing many of them this year. I'm not sure why, but they seem to be everywhere lately. I have to say that I've never noticed an Indigo Bunting in my life before this spring but I sure get a kick out of how very BLUE they are.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Birthday Weekend Yard Sale SCORE!

If you know me, then you know I love to hit the yard sales. I'll go out even when "sensible" folks stay home due to the weather. I managed to make a great score this weekend even though I got a late start. My girls had been in need of some bedroom furniture, which I found! WOOT! I've been on the prowl for a metal bed frame for my oldest daughter. I came across a beautiful white metal bed Friday night at the auction gallery but it turned out to be the wrong size for us. I ended up leaving the auction at midnight without bidding on or buying a single thing. Amazing, eh??

We brought home a dresser and a desk with hutch. It's just what our girls needed, too. They couldn't wait to get everything in place! Cute, huh?

I figured this bedroom furniture was a little extra good luck for my birthday, which was Friday. Our trip to the auction gallery was a little birthday treat for me and hubby. We always have a good time at the auction, even if we don't find anything.

Since my hubby is a fairly new fan of the yard sale goodies post on Rhoda's blog at Southern Hospitality, he insists that we share our finds. Thanks to everyone who stops by from Rhoda's blog!

Friday, May 15, 2009

Guess where I've been??

I have no idea how I missed it, but I did. I finally realized that Feather Your Nest is in Eureka Springs! It's been there all this time and I've been passing it up. Can we say DUH?!? Well, last weekend I finally remedied that and actually got to go visit Eureka Springs. Feather Your Nest played no small part in my making the trip and I am so glad I went! I will definitely be going back and dragging lots of stuff home with me.

When we go for the day we like to wander Eureka Springs and eat pizza in the Historic District. There are a few really adorable home decor shops here now-in addition to the antique/flea markets. I need to get more pics and post a couple more geeky gushes about them. One of them is right downtown and I need to get up there and buy the glass cabinet knobs she had for sale. Ok, I promise to get more pics next time I go. I do have some pics of the Victorian houses, which I will put together in another post for your viewing pleasure. Ok, I better get to work on it!

The desk project...

Is finally completed! After a couple false starts, I am happy to report that I finally have a desk I can use!

I had such a difficult time deciding what color I wanted to use for this project. I had thought I might do with a country-ish blue called "baby blue bird". Loved the color but it wasn't right for the desk at all. I finally gave up and went with a gloss black which turned out very well. I had a photo snapped of it yesterday before hubby came home and located the nickle knobs for me. I'm sure you can imagine the brushed nickle knobs pretty easily. It only took me 3 months to get this done, too! Ugh. Anyway, now all I have to do is get hubby to paint the file cabinet that goes with the desk and I'm all set. BTW, this desk stared out life with a cherry finish that had worn away on the desktop over the last 6 years.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

What to do with Karl Blechen's Palm House??

I'm experiencing a minor dilemma over here. I have this enormous framed print by Karl Blechen named "The Palm House". When I first saw this in a store in Oklahoma City, I wanted to own it in a way I had never wanted any other thing in my life. Well, you know, I'm speaking here of material possessions. I wanted this piece of art so bad I cried when I returned to the store to find it had sold.

Now, about the dilemma. As I said, this art piece is enormous. Very nearly the same size as one of my living room windows! As much as I love it, I feel that the size of this thing is out of proportion for this house. I can't fit it into the attic or I'd just store it away and drag it back into the sunlight once I have higher ceilings. But what to do with it right now?? I have no idea and I've toyed with selling it off at the yard sale I plan to have soon. ACK! I just don't know what to do with it. *sigh*

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Hunting Party

I didn't blog yesterday because I was on a Hunting Party. I have pics of what I found and I'm imagining all kinds of possibilities! Part of the inspiration came when I located a baby doll with porcelain head and hands. I could just see this as a nice accessory for a vintage/antique themed child's room. At this point I believe this is the direction I'm taking the bedroom. So far, I have a few interesting pieces I picked up yesterday. I'm hoping to locate a child's book to take apart so I can frame the pages and hang in the bedroom. Enjoy the sneak peek!

Blue toile pillows sized perfectly for the bed.

Baby needing a pretty antique dress.

Very attractive black shelf.

This blue vase is one I picked up several weeks ago. I loved the grey blue color and the shape. I didn't have a plan for this piece when I bought it, but it was on clearance so I snapped it up! I'm glad I did.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Spring Cleaning

Everyone and their dog is spring cleaning at the moment so I figure I'd chime in with my latest ambition. We have 6 people in the house and laundry can be a headache, especially if one believes that it can be done once a week. Yeah, that was me. When I had 1 or 2 kids, that wasn't necessarily out of line. However, with 4 kids in the house, we need a different system. Fast forward to last week when I'd been on a blog reading binge into the wee hours of the morning. A plan had begun to form in my sleep deprived mind. I didn't actually shove myself away from the desk and shout EUREKA! into the dark of night, but I came close.

I decided to make the commitment to do at least one load of laundry a day. To facilitate that I had to purge the laundry room of items I didn't use. One truth of couponing is that there will be products that you drag home only to find that you detest that particular product. Yep, my laundry room was full of such items. Most of it was noxious bathroom cleaners or kitchen cleansers that put me off. In the end they languished on the shelf. All of it was purged and now I have my handy dandy little system all lined up and ready to go. There is nothing outrageously taxing about the cost of borax, washing soda, vinegar or baking soda. BONUS!

Once all the laundry was washed, folded, hung up and put away we had a workable system in place. It's been a week and so far, the laundry room has remained clear. I'm amazed that I can still see the floor after a whole week!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

It's Yard Sale Season!

I have to admit that I've been looking forward to hitting the yard sales. We tend to treat saturday mornings like a date. Just the two of us scoping things out, looking for a great deal. We got up this morning to pouring rain anxious to get started on the first "date morning" of the season. We were so glad we decided to go out into the screaming downpour when we came upon our Find Of The Day, which turned out to be a new bed for our youngest. I love this bed! I can't wait to get started on decorating the room now. I didn't really have a plan for the room before now, but that's just changed. Check out what we found saturday morning:

The bed is from Ikea but seems to fit well into my plan for a French themed room. Better still, the bed adjusts from a toddler size up to a twin size. Yeah, we'll be using this bed for quite some time.

I also located a cloche, jam jar with spoon and a little blue striped crock. Not sure what I'll do with them yet, but I'll think of something.

Rhoda @ Southern Hospitality is having a bit of a show and tell link party of thrift/yard sale items. Check it out, it's amazing what everyone finds!