Old things and new revelations.

Thrifting.  Yes, I love thrifting.  Antiquing.  Yes, I love antiquing.

The last few days I got to do both.  And scored a ton of charming loot that will begin to bring to life my style as I embrace my 'loves'.  But I also made another big discovery, that I'm just as tickled about.  
I'll share that a little further down.

Seriously?  Come on now, look at that booty!  Tell me you're impressed.  Say "Cindy, I'm impressed."  Thank you.

Little white lovelies...

Gold goodness to be transformed soon.

Big plans for all these gorgeous mirrors too...

And these frames will presto-chango as well....

Teensy little framed botanical.  Freakin' adorable, if I don't say so myself.

Old pressing thingy.  For the arms of shirts.  Total coolness. 
A couple wool sweaters for future felting projects.

Also snagged a long wool coat for me, and a couple tops.

Picked up this antique lamp at a consignment shop.  Gonna make a new shade for her and give her a new coat of paint.

By the way, if you want to read a gut-busting hilarious post about one woman's thrifting adventure, go read this post at My Big Life in a Small Town:  My Little Pretties

Ok, next.....
I had to make a trip to see my Gram on the north side of Indy, so I combined that with some more 
super-fun-no-pressure-no-time-limits-no-kids-browsing jaunts. 

Ran into my favorite local antique spot before blowing town, then stopped by a couple more antique/gift shops in my hometown where Gram lives.

Found me some pretties.

Check out the stars of recycled wood.  Delish.  Vintage aqua plate.  Yummers.

Not sure this birdcage is old, but I loved it, and it was on clearance. (this booth is closing unfortunately)

Can I get an oooooo  ahhhhhhh?  This basket is just the thing I need for some of my BIG walls.  I'll have fun filling it.  Or I'll pull my hair out filling it.  Either way.
Handmade cards showing the courthouse in the town where I grew up. Gonna frame one.

Old decanter jobby.

I'm loving how the rustic sits alongside some shiny.  I want my home to have an eclectic gathering of interesting items, be they thrifted, handmade, antique, what-have-you.

In other news:
Looked at the World Market tables, decided they were a wee bit too trendy for my taste.  

And I should let you know right here hubs and I bought a dining set after I got back today.  That'll be a different post 'cause I don't want to overwhelm you with my quick wit, superior writing skills, and overall massively impressive photography all at once.  

Actually I'm just lazy. 
This post is taking F.O.R.E.V.E.R. to finish.

Went to Hancock and snatched the last 5 yards of the washed floral I used for my throw pillows in the master bedroom. YAY!

Went to Home Goods and bought NOTHING.  (Looking for vintagey throw rugs for the master, saw lots of stuff to knock off, and lots of women who need an attitude adjustment.)

Went to Pottery Barn and Restoration Hardware to pinch some catalogues.  Made a big discovery. 
I'm over them. 
I *did* go look at the beautiful farmhouse quilt I posted about....the colors were not a good match, and frankly, it wasn't as pretty as in the catalogue.  

Also got some beautiful glass ornaments at RH on 70% off.  

But girls.  Did you catch what I said?  I. am. over. them.  I mean truly, they have some amazingly cool birdie stuff, but there was soooo much, it was obnoxious. I'm tempted to hide my plethora of bird paraphenalia until this phase is over in decorating land. Just so no one thinks I'm collecting birds because PB told me to.  I could appreciate their styling, but I just could not get over how it felt way too pushed, staged, in your face.  Lovely things, just over marketed, over-priced, with no character. 

Now *my* newly-acquired antique bird here has all kinda character, and it's the REAL DEAL. 

I kinda left there pitying the people who drop hard-earned cash there for things they can either make themselves or purchase from a talented etsy shop-owner.  Pulling out of the mall parking lot, jammin' to some classic Ella Fitzgerald.....like you do, I realized I don't really want anything they have anymore. It was a real let-down, and that's a good thing.  (channeling Martha for a minute there)  

  But soon a contented joy bubbled up from down deep, and I left the Big Guys behind to revel in the unique goodies tucked in my back seat. 

I came home late this afternoon with all my thrifted/antique goodies all wrapped in smooth paper. Got a thrill each time I opened a package cradling yet another one-of-a-kind item that had been loved and used in a previous life or passed off as ugly, now just needing a bit of my creative attention to give them a new lease on life.


This is such a revelation to me, and I don't know why.  I suppose I feel a bit giddy that I marked off a few 'likes', and didn't feel regret. I can look forward to hunting for/creating my true 'loves'.  
Old things.  Unique things.  Stuff with a past.  Stuff with a new future.





No pictures today. Just some ponderings and another video.

You guys have given me much to ponder concerning my wee kitchen nook, which unfortunately is the only eating area we use for, well, eating.  By some quirk of nature I was blessed with 6 kids, 2 kid-in-laws and a big black Bogart....and a budget for the size house we live in.

I'm not really any closer to a decision, and heck, we've lived with the room like this for a year and half so another month or two spent organizing my thoughts and saving moola for a table won't hurt us none. :)

I should mention that given my druthers, I'd be moving walls and bulkheads and cabinets and, and, and.....

....but our family is trying hard to be content with what we have, get out of debt, and not spend too much energy on this house as we don't plan to stay here forever.  Changes are more along the lines of what we can afford while we dig ourselves out of debt, and what will update the home enough to get a good return when we do sell later down the road.

I also constantly remind myself that I am BLESSED for no other reason than the fact that I was born in the US to a middle class family who could afford nice home, married a man who is a genius and can work a well-paying job that he loves, and have the aforementioned 6+2(+1 hairy) kids who have zero health issues.

Our time is precious to us as a family.  Big reno's aren't going to be part of our lives very often.  My hubster decided long ago that his children would have a PRESENT father, both physically and emotionally....and those of you with teenagers know how much sheer energy that takes.  I admit I get miffed at times when my 'honey-do' list takes a back seat to Hubs reading to the boys or playing a video or board game with them....or having yet another heart to heart with his teenage girls, or an impromptu phone convo with one of our adult children struggling with the responsibility of being a grown up.  What a gift he is.  I never want to take that for granted, nor do I want my children to remember mom cracking the whip over dad every spare moment to make our house "just so".

Now don't get me wrong.  I want a beautiful home as much as the next shelter blogger.  But lately, my focus and priority are needing to be directed toward functional.  As in, function first: beauty second.  Money spent on our home must first be functional.  For instance, and in random order:
  • I need a table to fit anywhere from 4 to 10.  
  • I need shelves for homeschooling books
  • I need cupboard space for dishes to serve anywhere from 4 to 10. 
  • I need a cleaning schedule, a menu plan, and to deal with the 25 years and 6 kids worth of pictures laying in piles in the middle of the upstairs playroom. 
  • I need to weed out the things that don't bring joy...and organize the stuff I need and want to keep. (spent lots of time over at Leanne's last night.  That girl has organizing skillz!)

So....back to my kitchen nook.  We won't be doing anything structurally to the space except to remove the railing separating the family room from the nook.  Hubby spent time in the attic checking for the joists and found it isn't a load bearing wall.  I spent time looking at PB, Ballards, and furniture store sites for table styles I liked, could afford, and would fit the needs of our family in the space we have.

Here's a some options that have caught my eye so far:
JCPenney's table set
World Market #1
World Market #2
Value City Furniture #1
Value City Furniture #2

We also just found out we could possibly get up to 6 solid wood chairs from Hubby's work as they're renovating their cafeteria.  Get this: $5 ea.  They're first come first serve, so we'll see.  Then I might be able to spend a bit more  to get a big ole farm table and a bench. 

Here's yet another silly video of one of my daughter's wedding showers...she works at the same place as hubby...and you can see the spindle chairs as the camera goes around the room.  BTW, the voice at the end is mine saying...."she does not need that!"  It's an espresso machine. *grin* 

Thanks so much for all the input....it's certainly helping me weigh the options and define what I need!  I'll keep ya posted :)


Nooks and crannies. Of the kitchen kind.

PSSSST...I'm no longer blogging here!
You can now find me at


Let's talk kitchen nooks.  Specifically, my kitchen nook.  You've seen it before, at Christmas:

Here's my problem:  As much as I love the look of that table and chairs, it's completely impractical for my family because:
  • it doesn't get any bigger 
  • I only have those four chairs which are not very comfy or sturdy 'cause they're vintage wood folding chairs, and there are currently 6 people living here with 4 more who come for holiday/free meals
  • the sideboard is now my master bedroom dresser
  • I have to open that danged sliding door several times a day to let a certain big, black creature get his squirrel fix.

My plan is to move this set to the dining room and find a new set for in here. 

Other than that, I have no plan.  Which is pretty typical for me.

Let me show you some other incarnations of this room as I've bought and sold many tables trying to reinvent this space.

Previous owner's stuff:  Round table centered in the room.  Just a wee bit of oak.

Here we'd just moved in and I hadn't painted a thing.  I liked this table, but it wouldn't get any smaller and pretty much overwhelmed the space, even when I shoved one end against the wall.

So I sold it and the chairs and got this off craigslist, thinking perhaps a trestle might work if I turned it sideways and moved it toward the BIG EMPTY WALL.

Took about, oh I don't know, 3 days to decide it was too big, and not really my style.  Sold it and got this from a consignment shop (and painted the walls...this would be the 3rd and current color, though it will be painted again soon):

This wasn't doing it for me either.  It wasn't very sturdy, only 6 chairs, and one of them was a captains chair that wouldn't push in all the way.  Drove me batty.  Stuff like that just irritates me to no end.  Can you guess what happened next?  Here, I'll help you.  I sold that set and bought the current set at the same consignment.

 This is what the room looks like as of this morning.  Side dresser is gone, turned the table longways in the room.

I took some more shots and a video so you could see the how the room is viewed from the different angles.

 From the family room (as far as I know the pole is support and cannot be removed):

From the kitchen side:

Looking into the family room from the kitchen penninsula:

From the opposite corner at the hutch.

Honestly of all the ways I've had this room, I like it best like this....lots of room to move around the table and get to the sliding door.  But we need a bigger table for my family with more chairs.  All the big tables we've tried just overwhelm the space.  It's only a 10x12 space.  Then there's the big wall....would LOVE to cut a gigantic window out and put in a window seat, but I don't want to go to the expense unless I knew we were staying her for a very long time.  Thought about building a bench and making a banquette-type seating area, but based on the above pictures, I didn't like the room 'shifted' to one side.

Here are some inspiration pictures.  Note that I haven't started heavily into my 'decorating exercises' full force yet.
 Like this look, but would obviously need something exponentially bigger....(source ?)

Really like this, but the way my room is, I don't think it would work.  If I put a banquette against the peninsula or the back BIG wall, it would never feel airy and open like this kitchen eating area.  I do love the white with the wood look though. (BHG)

Here's what I wish I could do.  Cut a big 'ole window and seat into that wall, even bump it out like this.  It would be perfect with a dark wood table and those black chairs.  This is the 'look' I'd like. (BHG)

This is very similar to what I had previously when we moved in, but the table was too large.  If I go with something like this again, I don't know that I could fit any more furniture in there without it feeling cramped.  I love this look though.  Very farmhouse-y.

This is Jennifer's kitchen from The Old Painted Cottage....I'm actually using the same wall color (RL Canvas Natural), love the long narrow farmhouse table, and the way she did her BIG blank wall.  This prolly my favorite look, neutral but easy to add pops of color, a bit shabby, a bit cottage-y, a bit farmhouse-y.  Definitely all my loves, and would work with my layout.  Don't be surprised if my finished space looks an awful lot like this. I won't be using artichokes on my pre-set table.  They'd become baseballs for my little guys.  The chairs might be a bit too 'shabby chic' too, based on my changing tastes.

Here is Autum from Creative Little Daisy's dining room.  LOVE her vintage table and bench.  Think she'd give it to me?
This room is gorgeousness..
Perfect in form and function.  I had these same window treatments in my last house.  LOVE.

Here's Chris's Just Beachy's dining room.  Why do you thing I love this?  Wicker, ladderbacks, deep stained farm table, slipcovers.  Delicious. Prolly not practical for everyday use, but still....

So....what say you?  Should I try to make a banquette?  A pedestal round table?  A farm table?  What about that big 'ole wall?  It's 10 feet across.  A scary amount of drywall to decorate.

Here's a tour, finessed with Bogart barking at me to let him in, shots of my messy kitchen with baskets o'homeschool crap, half decorated family room, and reflections of moi in my infamous pj's.  Have mercy.


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