Saturday, September 29, 2007

We have a WINNER! ...and some updates...

Yes, we have a WINNER! Not only was Maryanns66 the first one to guess correctly, she was also the first one to guess! We had some interesting answers come in, tho, and I was having fun reading your guesses so I kept mum. Just about everyone guessed the wooden sewing thread spool correctly, but it was the wooden toy wheel that I screwed to the spool and into the door that threw a lot of you. Congratulations, Maryanns66!!!! I'll send your surprise package as soon as I have your name and snail addy! Brother update: Thanks so much to all of you who included my brother, Ted, in your prayers and thank you all for the emails you sent. He had his surgery Monday and discovered that his situation was more urgent than originally anticipated. Both his left and right arteries were blocked 60%! His doctor gave him the option of having stints put in during two separate operations or having open heart surgery. He opted for having two surgeries. He had four stints put in one side and will have the other side done next month. My brother is five years older than me and I confess to being the typical little sister, following around my big brother not because I wanted to pester him but because I worshipped him. Thought he was just the coolest guy around. And I still do, even though the idiot went back to work the day he was released (Tuesday) from the hospital. He's self employed and stubborn but promised me he wouldn't lift anything heavier than his cell phone. IMPORTANT NOTE: Ted is not overweight, eats well and has always been active as I mentioned in my previous post. However, diabetes runs in our family. He was checked about a year ago after I was diagnosed with Type 2. He was told he was NOT diabetic. Guess what, folks?? Turns out he IS. His glucose level the week before surgery was 139 and the damage to his heart was due to the diabetes!!!! GET THOSE HEALTH CHECKS DONE!!!!!! Shop Updates: I've been busy trying to get things together (washed and/or painted, ribbon-tied and basically prettied-up) for the new space. I took just a few things over there Thursday and here are some pix: Inside the booth - I haven't moved any furniture inside yet (I have a small table in my van as I type) and the shelves are looking a little sparce but they will soon be overflowing. This cute little honey-colored bench will sit beneath the shuttered window, but for right now I set it in front of the door to keep it out of the way of others bringing in their wares. Notice the sign between the shutters? I liked the first one so well I had to make a second that says, "Welcome to my Cottage Home". I have yet another waiting to be completed. No new trash to treasure ideas as of this posting but there will be soon be plenty more to look at!

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Saturday Morning,lots of pix and a contest!

Happy Saturday morning! As soon as I finish with this post, I'll be out the door and on the way to the new antiques mall to begin preparation for my space.
This was an old auto shop in Elizabethton, Tn and the building is triple huge. Just thought you might want to take a look at what it looks like right now. When Robin first decided to rent this building and take on the challenge of cleaning and repairing it - and this is gross but true - the floor was covered in 2" - 3" of pigeon droppings.
This is the front area where there will be some booths, an ice cream stand and a sandwich area. The picture below shows part of the back of the building (there's a few hundred square feet between the front and the back that I didn't photograph). The red bricked area will be home to an auction.
The next photo is part of the upstairs where someone has erected a new wall. A few of the upstairs vendors have started bringing in some of their wares. You can drive a large vehicle upstairs (remember, I said this used to be an autobody shop) but, once the mall opens, vehicles won't be allowed up here.
The floor, of course, is concrete throughout. I just wanted to show you a floor treatment that was done by someone who is bringing in some outdoor furniture.
This is just a simple application of two different shades of paint - random shapes were painted on the floor to similate the look of stone. No shading was applied but I think this simple little task adds a lot to their display area.
Here's my spot: Next to the box is a working door. The building owner didn't want it removed for fear of either losing it or losing the knowledge of where it "belongs". (This building has many interior doors.) Next is a glimpse of the inside of my space:
The outside wall areas are also mine, so I'll have more space to hang things. Plus, the interior of this little "caboose" (as Robin calls it) area is small and I'll need the outer area for furniture.
Today I'll be cleaning the area, washing the windows and adding some wallpaper. I'll also move a few things inside.
I've added coat hangers to the bottom of the sign I previously showed you, also redid the writing on the second line.
Have you noticed the coat hangers look a little, er, different? I was going to buy the decorative double hooks and fasten them to the bottom. But those things are 'way more expensive than I thought they'd be - almost $7 each! I didn't want to put $28 (plus tax) in hooks on it so I ended up improvising.
Here's a closeup. Can you tell what they are? Tell you what: The first person to guess correctly will get a little surprise package from me.
And here's a pic of another pregnant project:
I've started working on this one. Maybe I'll be far enough along next post to show you its update.
And one last picture before I head out. This is the first year for this vine and I can't even remember its name. It is prolific with little red trumpet-shaped flowers that the hummingbirds adore. But look how the vines have grown around the screen door, leaving a perfect oval so I can view the 2-story birdhouse from our back patio.
Last but not least, I want to thank each of you for your good thoughts and prayers for my family. My brother is having his surgery Monday morning. I truly appreciate you keeping him in your prayers.
Thanks again! Have a blessed day!

Thursday, September 20, 2007

An Update and More New Projects Await!

I just found out late yesterday that my brother has a blockage in one of his heart valves. He'll have surgery either tomorrow or Monday, whichever can be scheduled first. The doctors think they can open the valve via angioplasty but won't know for sure until he gets in there with a scope.
As he was on the phone with me, his wife was in the hospital with a gall bladder attack. They live in Southern California and I'm 'way out west here in Tennessee so if this post doesn't make sense in some areas, you'll understand why I'm a bit distracted.

This is a picture of my hubby Terry, SIL Kim and bro Ted taken a couple years ago in Hawaii. Ted and Kim have always been active, eaten healthily and taken good care of themselves in general.

If they hadn't, this would have probably happened years ago. I'm not only asking you to pray for them, I'm urging you to take a look at your and your family's lifestyle. You're never too old to start taking care of yourself and you're never too healthy looking to have health problems.

Thank you.

Here's an update on last post's vintage ironing board:

Truthfully, I hate to paint these old treasures but they are very plentiful here in the south - so plentiful that they sit in antique shops forever. Just like the chairs I talked about a couple posts ago, you have to do something to them to get them to sell.

Here's an idea I picked up from KraftyLady23, posted on the HGTV Trash to Treasure boards: This was an old cabinet door, turned sideways and painted. I'll add some coat rack hooks to the bottom and it will be completed! You can barely see the writing in the middle: The top is French, below it is the English translation, "Welcome to Our Home!". I decided to go with French on the top simply because this is more of a French Country design. Although I painted the vine freehand, you could easily stencil around the edges.

If you don't know French (I don't either!), or want to use a foreign language to accent your pieces, do what I did - go to this website: .

Until my next post, I'll be trying to decide what to do with this piece:

It's another one of my 2-items-for-$1 buys. It has side extenders that work and the top, slightly crushed in that it is, opens up to expose this:

I've never seen a piece like this and I am guessing its original purpose was to hold silverware. This is something I'll need to stare at for awhile before deciding what it's second life will be.

Until next time, think positive thoughts and take care of yourself.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

A Few More Things

*Newsflash* ~ I got to see my husband for a few minutes this week. Yes, we're married and live together and yes, I'm being facetious. I know that probably too many couples feel the same way and that it's become a way of the American life, husbands and wives seemingly passing each other in the driveway. It feels like the two of us have been working harder than a couple of borrowed mules lately. He has a full time job in which he has been forced to work a LOT of overtime and I barely have a moment to call my own, running between home and the two shops. Don't get me wrong - I'd much rather be busy than sitting on the sofa trying to decide which TV show to watch next. We did have a few minutes to sit down and verbalize our schedules for the next few months and concluded that, between now and Christmas, things will probably only get busier for us. It looks like the new antiques mall that Robin (owner of Robin's Nest in Elizabethton) will be opening by the first of October. Eeegads, that's only two weeks ago and we've committed ourselves to yet another space (room) to fill. That means I need to figure out the display configuration and get enough items together to make it look cozy and inviting to buyers. Sounds easy enough, but it takes a lot of time to carefully clean antique glassware and linens, clean, repair and paint or polish old furniture, and repurpose good junk (aka do my trash-to-treasure items). This, plus taking care of our home and four parrots, cook meals, etc. But I truly do love it all. As I said...much better than sitting on the sofa... Just wanted to share a few of the things I'll be up to in the next few months. That said, here's a few more things I've done the last few days:

I might have told you that I needed to work on this chair. It's an old teacher's chair (or it could have been a young teacher's old chair...). After painting it black, I obviously painted a little primitive scene on it. The one I showed you a couple posts ago sold and I needed something similar to put in its spot.

If we have an item that has "sat" in either of the shops for any amount of time, we always shuffle it around. Strange, how certain items will sell in one shop but not the other and vice-versa. Anyway, we've had a couple bread boxes that have done nothing but sit. I showed you one last week. Remember? The one that revealed artwork when I started sanding it?

Well, here's another one. It was painted blue when we got it but evidently nobody (at least, nobody who has been into either shop) wanted a blue breadbox. So, I pulled out the paints for it..

And this is what it looks like now. Yep, I forgot to take the "before" pic again, but I'm sure you can picture this box without the flowers on it.

I took these pix, by the way, as these things were on their way out the back door and into my van so I feel lucky that I even remembered to photograph them.

Warning: Here comes another candleholder. Remember, I told you that I love making these?

Here's more proof that I do! This one is a little different in that I fastened an old dessert bowl to the top so it can hold candles, jewelry, or even candy. My neighbor asked me if it was a centerpiece. Hmmm. I guess it could be.

And, last but not least, here's an ironing board that can't be finished until the blue paint dries. I won't tell you what the remaining scene(s) will be, but will tell you that the color that goes on top of this blue is white. By the way, this old wood ironing board has been for sale for about two months so it's getting a new look.

Before I run off, I want to thank Margo for featuring me as Artist of the Week on her website. Now, this gal is a fantastic trash-to-treasure artist and I want to be just like her when I grow up. Here's her website: If you haven't already been there, be sure you visit!

Off I go, but let me first tell you that I do appreciate your visit! Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

A Day to Remember that I'd Like to Forget

It would be more correct to admit that I just wish it had never happened. But, just as December 7, 1941 happened and can never be undone, September 11, 2001 is a day which will live in infamy. There are some Americans who want September 11 to become a national holiday. I'm personally against it, as I tend to think of holidays as special times to celebrate. I believe September 11 is a day to mourn those innocent men and women, people who were someone's mother, daughter, brother, best friend, who were murdered on that day. I see it as a day to honor those brave firefighters, police officers, EMTs who risked their lives in efforts to save others. As a Christian, I find it hard to not hate Bin Laden. I see him as a murderous coward who boasts of sending his followers on suicide missions to kill others. He gives not a thought to the reality that these men are also someone else's beloved son, father or husband. He readily sacrifices those loved by others but swears revenge on those members of his own family killed or injured in war. Forgive him? I confess that I struggle with this. I am instructed by my God to forgive my enemies and know I must do this before I leave this world. If I do not forgive him, I have only myself to blame for having to spend eternity with him instead of with Christ. The other night I happened to watch a game show in which the contestant was asked what percentage of Americans believe that our country will not be in existence in another 100 years. I was certain the percentage would be low, 15% or lower. I was not only amazed but disappointed that an overwhelming majority of those asked said they believed that, in 100 years, there would be no United States of America. This country pulled together after 9-11. I'm urging you to continue to pray for our country and our leaders. I'm urging everyone to do what they can to keep us strong and united. And I'm urging you to choose eternity with our Lord and Savior, not with Satan and Bin Laden. God bless America; God bless us all.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Bragging Rights

Did you notice I added something new here? Look to the right and you'll see the real loves of my life, my family. That gorgeous blonde you see sitting with the good-looking fella is my daughter and her career soldier husband. The beautiful girls in the background are my two eldest granddaughters. Now, see that Christmas tree? That was taken at my son's home last year. He's the equally gorgeous guy to the right of the picture. On his lap is my grandson and of course the little beauties next to them are my other two granddaughters. Trying to hide behind them is my son's girlfriend, who will probably never forgive me for posting a picture of her that was taken first thing in the morning without her makeup. And, same picture - last, but not least is my truly wonderful husband, Grinnin Grampa. Mixed in with the pictures are items that may look familiar to you, as they are pieces that I have salvaged from the trash and rebuilt, one of the many plants in my garden and ~ I must toss this one in ~ a black server that my hubby pretty much took under his wing. It had a terrible paint job on it when we got it (why do some people paint so sloppily??) and needed repair. Oh - a couple of things I had absolutely no part in creating: The sheep live down the road; I oftentimes use their wool for doll hair or to stuff inside "pinkeeps" (pincushions) that I make. The little kid on the pony is me, aged 4. Just had to pop in a few minutes! See ya soon!

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Fun, Finds, Food and Frenzies - oh, and Elvis!

It's been another busy week, but that's a good thing. My idea of fun is being busy with yard sale shopping, checking out estate sales, etc. I had the good fortune a few weeks ago of being able to purchase the "leftovers" of a large yard sale for not a lot of money. Included in all that "stuff" were several old and battered books that immediately went into one of our shops. There was also a lot of costume jewelry (I'm not familiar with the value of costume jewelry but love to include unmatched pieces and bits into the spindle candleholders that I make (like the one below). Several pretty glass items and lots of stuff I can use for my trash-to-treasure endeavors.

I've had this breadbox for sale for a couple months so I decided to bring it home, paint it and maybe paint a primitive scene on it. But, I started sanding it and look what I found:

I ended up carefully sanding the white paint off the original artwork and covered it with a sealer. Well, that didn't take much time so I moved on to another project: An old wood cabinet that had been torn off someone's kitchen wall. I have this thing for cabinets. I don't know what it is, but I love old cabinets. This one needed a lot of repair, as the sides had come loose from the back, etc. As I began working on it, pulling out old oversized nails (why do people drive huge nails into wood that isn't as deep as the nail is long? I mean, don't they know it's going to come out the other side??) I realized that this old cabinet really is old. It was originally built with wooden peg nails. Being careful not to do additional damage with my repairs, and currently being in my yellow stage (I go through color stages; I've recently left my sage green stage and my lavender stage was short-lived), I painted it yellow and kept the same handles (with a coat of black paint).

Have I ever mentioned that sanding and painting makes me hungry? So does shopping, watching TV, driving to the market, waking up in the least, that's how it's been this week. I've had a week of food cravings. No particular food, mind you. Just food in general. I can't seem to get full. Not a good thing when you're trying to lose weight. Or when you have diabetes, as I do. This whole week has been a feeding frenzy of sorts for me and I'm just wondering how many others go through this, too. But no, this isn't what leads into Elvis. One other thing first.

Have you ever seen something that you just totally fell in love with and knew you had to drag it home? Besides your spouse, that is. (Hee, just kidding - no hate mail, please!) That's how I felt when I saw this piece:

My husband said, "What do you want with that? It's missing a drawer." "The pulls are worth more than I'm paying for it." Now, this really isn't a lie. The drawer pulls are worth more than the (would you believe?!) $20 I paid for it. But, by saying that, I knew he would think the sole reason I wanted it was so we could remove them and use them on another project. And, with our workshop, attic, outside storage buildings and even part of the interior of our home being stuffed with projects he was wondering where in the world we would put this thing. And that's the question he asked me as soon as we got it home. I pointed to our den. "Where in our den?" he asked. "I'll find a spot." "I thought you said you just wanted the pulls." "I didn't say that. I said the pulls are worth more than I paid for the piece." "But it's missing a drawer. How are we going to find a drawer to go with it?" I grabbed a basket and shoved it into the cavity meant to hold a drawer. "Okay." He shrugged and continued to unload our truck. Thank God that my husband is so good natured. By the way, I'll find another basket that is more appropriate. And please disregard the mess on top of the dresser; it makes for a good place to put my supplies while I'm tagging things for the shops. One of my projects for this week will be deciding what other piece of furniture that is currently being kept in the den will have to find another home.

And now, Elvis! Okay, no, not the real Elvis. Not only has he left the building, he's left the earth. A few days ago I was informed that a large group of Red Hatters (of Red Hat Society fame, of course!) would be in our area. They are a wonderful, fun loving group of ladies. And we want them to visit the shops. Soooo...Linda, who owns the Shop Around the Corner, has arranged for Jesse Wade, a Professional Elvis Tribute Artist (ETA), to perform there at noon on October 27. If you're close to Elizabethton, TN, bring a blanket or a chair and come join us!

It's no cost to you ~ it's Linda's treat! Get it on your calendar!