Wednesday, February 29, 2012
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Thanks to all those who entered the burlap pillow giveaway from Kijsa Studio! I love reading about the “good things” that have been happening to you and for you. I think we ALL need a reminder to stop and count our blessings sometimes.
Alaina from Arbor House Lane has an extra reason to be grateful, because she is the winner of the pillow!
My favorite pillow is the address pillow and I love the rectangular shape. These are really cute pillows and I would love to win one.
February 23, 2012 8:26 AM
Congratulations, Alaina! I will be e-mailing you.
Thursday, February 23, 2012
Growing up, picnics and holidays were an excuse to make homemade ice cream! My introduction to burlap began there—my dad would put a big chunk of ice in an old burlap sack and whack it with the flat side of an axe to crush ice for the ice cream freezer.
If I told my dad that people (meaning me) were using burlap for curtains and pillows, I *know* he would think I was crazy!
But take a look at these adorable pillows from Kijsa Studio!
She makes them out of old burlap sacks
Dad, I’m sure she washed them first.
…and she has generously offered to give one of her initial pillows (your choice) away to a Red Hen Home reader!
There are two ways to enter:
1. (Mandatory) Please visit Kijsa Studio’s Etsy shop, then come back here and leave a comment telling me which pillow is your favorite (initial, zipcode, address, etc).
2. (Optional) Leave another comment telling me something good that happened to you within the last 24 hours!
That’s it! Winner will be determined via random number generator on Monday, February 27. Good luck!
What are you waiting for?? Visit Kijsa Studio HERE.
P.S. For those sweet souls who are wondering, the table issue isn’t quite resolved yet. Apparently the manager got an e-mail back from the corporate office finally on Wednesday, and they were firm but kind on the store-credit-only stance. The manager said he would send a second e-mail back saying HE thought they should give us our money back. We shall see!
Wednesday, February 22, 2012
Where do the pictures hide on my computer? I wish someone would tell me! I am missing my “before” pictures of this card catalog, and I am not in the mood for hide-and-seek!
Last summer a friend showed up at my door. He had a piece of furniture for me to look at before he went to D.I. Did I want first dibs?
At this point my garage was stuffed with furniture, so I was practicing my polite refusal…
Then I saw it was a card catalog…a piece of one, actually…and I was a goner!
It looked like the middle section had been pulled out at some point. There were no legs, and no top—just holes where pegs would have attached it to another section.
I used a piece of wood leftover from building the sewing armoire to fashion a new top…
…and a trip to IKEA supplied casters for some industrial-feel feet!
I painted the whole thing in an off white, and then glazed and distressed it all to show off all the knicks and scratches. I used Rub-n-Buff in pewter and black to tone down the original brass handles—mostly to make them blend in with the casters, which were silver!
I kind of intended to take some more/better pictures this afternoon, but it sold before I could do that. Not that that’s a bad thing.
Although I think this is a fun idea for a coffee table, I also thought it would be so cool at the end of a bed—to store gloves and scarfs, or maybe a variety of small toys.
Sunday, February 19, 2012
I have a story to share. I wouldn’t tell it to just anyone, just my friends!—because it isn’t too flattering (of me). And there aren’t a lot of pictures, because at the time I was WAY too upset to think about getting the camera out.
Meet my kitchen table.
I think it was the first major new furniture purchase of our marriage! We had been using a circa-1960s metal-and-formica table set inherited from my husband’s parents. So I bought this table about 13 years ago, I think. I chose upper-end chairs that are actually comfortable to sit in, and although the table is mainly solid oak, I purposefully chose a laminate top because I knew I had many years of small children ahead of me.
It has been a very good table.
But here we are, 13 years later, and I am so over the medium-oak finish and the laminate top. And it is showing some scratches, chips, and other wear.
For no good reason other than that, I have been drooling over a gorgeous table at Down East Home for over a month. Picture, if you will, a rustic wood top and chunky turned legs in a creamy color… And with two leaves, this table could be big…which is generally a good thing for my family.
It spoke to me. Honest it did. “Take me home, Korrie!” it cried on each and every one of my
And I wanted to. But first—I had to measure it.
Uh-oh. The table, without any leaves, was just a little smaller than my table with one leaf. And those big chunky legs made it so three chairs couldn’t fit on each side (a necessity for my family). With a leaf in, it was VERY large (with two, you could almost land airplanes on it). So I told myself it wasn’t meant to be.
foolishly kept on visiting it.
Yesterday, it was on sale! I thought to myself, “I can get new (smaller) chairs!” Or “I can live with it with a leaf in it! It’s not that big!” Famous last words.
And so…I bought it.
My dear husband (who hates to move furniture) and I hauled our table out to the garage (it's heavy), went back to pick up the new table, brought it in the house (it's REALLY heavy), and got it in the kitchen. My husband, sensing impending disaster, I'm sure, escaped downstairs. My older boys and I added the leaf to the table, and I stepped back to look….
The thing is GIGANTIC!
Suddenly the enormity (pun intended) of my stupidity comes crashing down on me, and I seriously thought I was going to pass out. I got nauseous and had to sit down on the floor.
You see—this store does NOT return your money; it will only give store credit.
I was seriously sick. I went downstairs and cried and apologized to my husband. He rose to the occasion magnificently and assured me everything was going to be all right (not that I believed him at that point). He didn't get impatient or upset with me. He called the store and talked to the manager, asking if they would make an exception (I was curled up in a fetal position on the floor, sobbing)...the manager was not encouraging, but said he would "e-mail corporate" and see what they said; we should hear back Tuesday because of the long weekend
I'm guessing this is all code for, "I don't want to be the bad guy, so I'll pass the buck up the line."
One of my friends used to manage for that store, and she says it's not likely.
So...for the next several years, everyone in my family may be getting gifts from Down East Home! Isn't that exciting??
And I told my extended family to “Please see me for all your future furniture purchases.”
Anyway, I couldn't stand to look at the thing. Dear husband patiently helped me haul the MASSIVE BEAST back out of the house and take it back to the store. I'm guessing it was gone from the store for about an hour and a half, tops. Then he helped me haul the "old" table back inside. And he fed me chocolate.
I am much less of a basket-case now. Money-wise--it came out of my furniture earnings, so it's not like it was grocery money or something. But still, it was a DUMB DUMB thing to do. I, who am well-known to have buyer's remorse in spades, bought a very expensive item from a place that didn't accept returns! An item that I had measured and KNEW was too big! But I bought it anyway!
Gah, I'm getting nauseous again just thinking about it.
The moral of the story is, “Don’t let your heart overrule the tape measure.”
So how was your weekend??
…onto beadboard as well. For me, smaller designs are much more difficult to reproduce neatly. I think my hand gets shakier the more exact I try to be!
I think this one turned out well, though. The final “sign” was 18” wide by 11” tall, in order to keep the proportions correct. I gave the beadboard a heavily distressed, crackle-y finish, and glazed it in three colors to give the appearance of much weathering.
It was a fun challenge!
Hmmm…I wonder how the French Chocolate table would translate to beadboard??
Thursday, February 16, 2012
Things have been pretty quiet at the Red Hen Home lately (that’s not a bad thing). It’s still too cold here to do any big furniture painting, so I’ve been keeping busy with a few signs!
At least…that’s what I do when I’m not reading or eating Valentine cookies…
Here are a few samples of what I’ve accomplished over the last few days…
The discussions for future “in-home” projects are commencing! Hope to begin work on some changes for my long-neglected front room (it’s only been empty since August!) soon, and figure out what to do with my poorly planned laundry room!
Friday, February 10, 2012
- I’m typing this while my kids eat breakfast, so I can eat breakfast after they leave the table. I prefer to eat in peace!
- We did NOT get an offer on our house after showing it for the 3rd time Monday night.
- I’m miffed at these people who came and ate my cinnamon rolls and then didn’t have the courtesy to say, “You know, we changed our mind.”
- So we’re staying here. That means I have a nearly uncontrollable urge to buy new furniture.
- Or renovate my laundry room. Which shall it be?
- We had six people come down with Strep throat in the last two weeks. Then I got it again. Sometimes life isn’t fair!
- My favorite vintage-y consignment store closed in December. I am still in mourning.
- I have a masters degree in Chemical Engineering. There are days when I think, “For this I went to college??”
- But I wouldn’t trade being a wife and a mother for anything!
- One of my dreams is to have fresh flowers in my house all the time. Normally I’m too
cheapfrugal to buy them, though.
- I stole my husband away from the girl he was on a date with. But then, he stole me from the guy I was on a date with. Worked out well, don’t you think??
- My last two babies were born at home. Yes, I am one of those women.
- Frosted Mini Wheats is my breakfast cereal of choice.
- I didn’t plant my garden last year. Still feel guilty over that one.
- I think I want to buy my husband a smoker for his birthday. Because I want one.
- I don’t drink soda pop. Not because I think it’s bad for you (although I do), but because I can’t stand carbonation!
- I really want to build furniture. But I’m scared to try.
- I love to get mail. I think it’s a leftover from my pre-e-mail college days.
- I think fuzzy socks are one of the greatest inventions ever.
- Right along with electric mattress pads!
- Three years ago I was in a car accident that shattered my right wrist. I am grateful for the use of my hand every day.
- My favorite people in the world are my brothers and sisters. I hope that will be true for my kids when they grow up!
- I want to travel someday. But I’d prefer if someone else did all the planning for me.
- I’ve lived outside of Montana for longer than I lived in Montana now, but it will always be home to me.
- I think “capable” is a beautiful word. I hope people think I am.
Sunday, February 5, 2012
Anyway, my sister loves cedar chests as much (if not more) than I do! Last summer I finished this one for her:
She is an amazing seamstress, and she needed somewhere to store her vast collection of fabric.The hunt didn’t end there…next there was this one which she wanted to have refinished for her oldest daughter.
I painted the base in a soft gray “oops” paint that I transformed into homemade chalk paint.
I used a black glaze to highlight the pretty moldings…
…and I painted the handles with oil-rubbed bronze spray paint.
I used “ebony” Minwax stain (for the first time) on the top of the chest, and I really liked it! I think it took three coats to get the color as dark as I wanted, but I like that you can still see the wood grain through it.
The bottom drawer had originally been felt-lined, but the felt had—shall we say—“decomposed” over time! I sanded out the fuzzy remains, and then lined the drawer with a fun pink fabric (I used Mod Podge under and over the fabric to seal it in there). I think it is my favorite feature of the whole chest!
Just yesterday I picked up another cedar chest for my other niece…so I need to get motivated to paint some more furniture!
Saturday, February 4, 2012
First of all, I promise there will be a furniture project posted tomorrow!
But for tonight, I thought I’d
whine a little fill you in on the latest bump in our roller-coaster house ride!
As I mentioned on Wednesday, we decided to take our house off the market on Tuesday. Tuesday night we got a call from an agent wanting to show our house the next day, and we said, “no.” That was hard! …but it was also probably a good thing, as I have continued to have sick kids!
Thursday morning, I get a call from our real estate agent. Three weeks ago, there was a couple who made an offer on our house, but we weren’t able to come to an agreement. Apparently, they were having second thoughts. Were we still willing to talk?
After thinking about it for a while, we told them we would be willing…but that the price we had originally countered with wasn’t going to work for us. We had actually offered to sell for $2000 less than what I thought our “bottom line” should be…so I moved the price back UP to that line!
And so we waited.
When I didn’t hear anything back by noon on Friday, I figured it was a dead deal. OK, fine.
You know where this is going, right?
Friday afternoon our agent calls as says they are willing to consider it, but would we be willing to include any home furnishings for that price?
We thought about it some more, and offered to include the couch and loveseat in our family room. Quite honestly, I have wanted to replace them, and it would be nice NOT to have to haul them back up the basement stairs!
And so we waited some more!
Today our agent calls and says they want to come look at the house one more time, Monday evening. We agreed.
So…what do you think? Do you think we’re going to sell our house after all, AFTER pulling it from the market? I don’t know what to think at this point!
My husband and I spent some in a quiet, peaceful place this afternoon, thinking and praying. And the thought that came to my mind was this one:
Trust in the Lord with all thine heart, and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and He shall direct thy paths. (Proverbs 3:5-6)
And so…I will try to do just that!
Thanks for letting me vent!
Wednesday, February 1, 2012
If you’ve been following along with me for the last couple of months, you know that I have been searching for a beautiful place…
…but the search is over.
No, we did not sell our house. We have taken it off the market.
I won’t lie to you--it is difficult for me to let go of the dream of a newer, bigger, better home.
NOT that I don’t love the home we are in. I am grateful for it every day! But I finally had to decide that there were other things more important that “newer, bigger, better.”
In four short years, my little chicklets will start leaving the nest…what do we really need more space for?
And at the same time, we’ll have college and missions to worry about…do we really want to have more of a mortgage to pay?
We love our neighbors, and the kids are doing well in school…do we really want to start over?
Well, I can bet you can guess the way we answered all those questions!
No, our home isn’t perfect. And the garage certainly isn’t perfect! (We still can’t fit both cars in along with the freezer and extra refrigerator!)
But it is our home, and it is beautiful to us.
(And I certainly won’t stop trying to make it more beautiful!)
You will never know how much your comments, advice, and encouragement have meant to me as we struggled to decide what was best for our family.
So much more I want to say, so much appreciation I wish I could convey, but I can’t type through the tears…
…so I will just say thank you.