Tuesday, September 16, 2014

The Love Seat I'm Sitting On

     After a morning of cinnamon rolls and shopping, my mom and I turn our wheels towards home. We're spending a week together in celebration of my birthday.
     "Garage Sale" a signs advertises.
     "It's probably almost over, but do you want to check it out?" she asks.
     I grin. Recently, we've been learning how to scout out garage sales, and this is bound to be a great one. The neighborhood is a nicer one, and we pull up in front of the house. Tramping through the dewy grass to the garage door, we discover a menagerie of outdated VHS tapes, beat-up board games, and an assortment of other things we really don't need or want.
     It is the tail end of the sale, and everything is clearly picked over.
     "Hey," she whispers, "look at that."
     My eyes alight on a sleek, boldly patterned love seat. I am taken back by my mother's sudden interest in such a large piece of furniture, especially when our boys are out of state.
     Turns out, she's never bought any furniture second-hand. Eyes bugging at the price missing a zero, we ask the lady selling it about the piece.
     A few minutes later, we are heading out, no furniture with us, and no money exchanged. Phone numbers, however, were exchanged. And over the next few days, my mom kept thinking about the beautiful piece of furniture at the unbeatable price of $50.
     "Even if we didn't end up using it (even though I can think of several places I'd like to put it), we could sell it on Craigslist for twice that much," Mom said over and over again, justifying her choice.
     Ok. I take it back. We did beat that price. We called the lady, said we wanted the piece, asked her to lower the price to $40, and practically shoplifted the piece with a friend's pickup.
     Done! And a steal too. She was clearly eager to get rid of it, even though it is in pristine condition, and a very nice piece.

     Right now it is in our study. You might have seen it in yesterday's video.

     We brought it home in June. Now it's my daily perch with my computer to type these posts, do my schoolwork, Tweet, Pin, and more.

     I'm sitting on it now. It's so comfortable, and the fabric will work until we can get it recovered in something more neutral. (I'm thinking light grey or plum.)


Monday, September 15, 2014

House No. 3 During - Video #1


     I don't think I'll ever post an after video since there will always be projects and decorating going on in our house, but here is the first of the "during" series of videos.

     This is what you'd see if you came to our house today.


Friday, September 12, 2014

We Could Have Started a Movie Theater With All That Popcorn

     Once upon a time, we decided to bite the bullet and scrape all our popcorn ceiling ourselves. Fortunately, our friends and family told us we were crazy and came to help us out. (Shout out to our popcorn-scraping club members!)

     Anyway, we spent a whole week on ladders. During the day, my mom, brother, and I hung plastic sheets on the wall with painters' tape. We could usually do this to two large rooms or three small rooms each day *depending on how focused we were and how much time we spent ordering lunch.* (We're a one-car family, and that was one of the craziest weeks of our lives. Thank the Lord for friends with vehicles who are amazing enough to come when we call! We ordered so many pizzas that week that I lost count.)

     Anyway, bellies full, we'd climb to the topmost rungs of our--ahem!--*seven borrowed ladders*. Yeah. We had a lot of ladders going on. That is one disadvantage of our adored but really, really  tall ceilings.

     So all day, we hung plastic. Then dad came home from work, and friends and family came over to help us wet the ceilings with squirt bottles and water jugs and then scrape them with a myriad of scrapers.

The bottom of my shoe, caked in wet popcorn

     After each of those long evenings of scraping until the sun went down, we were all covered in popcorn. We could have started a movie theater with all that popcorn.

     Here was the first room--the guinea pig of all house renovation projects--my room.

     The last few days, we borrowed a work light, so we could work past sundown.

     I'm not posting a tutorial here for how to scrape popcorn ceilings. You can find dozens on the internet and select the one that works best for you. This is just our story.


Tuesday, September 9, 2014

A Story Is Not What We Think It Is: My Post on (in)courage Today

     Today I am thrilled to be posting at (in)courage!

     A story is not what we think it is. It isn’t words on a page. It’s life. Your life. My life. Lives of those around us and fictional lives of those who’ve never existed. When, as a young child, my parents instilled in me the love of reading, I didn’t realize I was writing my own story.

     Read more here.


Saturday, September 6, 2014

House No. 3 Before

     The day we first got access to our house was thrilling on so many levels. I wanted to show everyone around before projects started happening. So I did. It's a cheesy video, but just pay attention to the house and you won't notice so much. Mute it if you really don't want to hear me say, "That's a door. That's a window. That's a wall." LOL!


Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Courage, Dear Heart

     This is the most wonderful Narnia quote of all time. It's beautiful, poignant, and just a little whimsical.

     Courage, dear heart.

     Wherever you are, you might need an extra dose of courage today. Remember, Aslan/Jesus is waiting for you to call out for him.

     Today, my prayer is we will be willing to humbly ask God for courage.

     Lord, give us courage. Courage to trust you no matter what. Courage to represent you well even if we face persecution. Courage to keep walking in light when sometimes it seems easier to follow the crowd.


Monday, September 1, 2014

How I Dress Nicely For Free

     Three outfits practically free? That's ridiculous, yet it's what happened over the summer. These outfits I found snapshot worthy are all borrowed, hand-me-downs, and inexpensively accessorized.

     Scarf: Garage sale find (maybe $2); Shirt: Borrowed

     Dress: Borrowed

     Shirt: Hand-me-down; Pants: Hand-me-down, Necklace: Ebay ($4!)

     Just goes to show you can dress nicely for dirt cheap if you have amazing friends and family who loan you clothes or give them to you as hand-me-downs.