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estate sale fever

hey y’all!

please excuse my recent prolonged absence from the blogging world. the texas heat has all but suffocated any creativity or enthusiasm that i had for blogging. and it’s almost done the same for junking. lordy me, but it’s hot out there.

partner in crime and fellow FAG bonnie and i bravely (and stupidly) hit the pavement at the crack of 9:30 saturday morning. there were a few estate sales that i wanted to visit before the heat melted me into a puddle of pink sweat.

the first one we hit was the remains of a three-day sale. sad, v. sad. you junkers know what i mean. however, IF you should find something you like, it’s usually priced to GO because it’s the end of the sale. in this case, i did find a couple of things … a vintage piece of luggage which was marked $3, but everything was 1/2 off, so i got it for $1.50. i can dig it. also got an electric pencil sharpener (it worked, i plugged it in at the sale) for the same price.

the second sale was somewhat difficult for me since i knew the deceased and her children. in fact, i grew up right next door to this house. it was good to see the children (okay, they’re not children any longer … they’re MY age) but it was also sad because their mother passed away recently.

and that brings us to my subject title. am i the only one who feels sort of … well … out of sorts at an estate sale? i mean, even when i don’t know the people, which i usually don’t, it has a sadness and morbidity to it … almost like we’re vultures coming in to pick over the remains of the deceased person’s stuff.

honestly, walking through a stranger’s house, looking at their personal things, in their bedrooms, in their bathrooms, closets, kitchens, etc. … it’s v. disconcerting. or at least that’s how i feel.

now, having said all that, does my uncomfortableness keep me from going to these estate sales?! hell no. because i’m a treasure hunter looking for a bargain … just like the rest of you. but i will say this: when i’m at an estate sale, i do try to maintain a somber and respectful demeanor (don’t be so shocked. my mama taught me how to act like a lady) just in case any family members are in the house. after all, somebody they loved has died.

usually.

case in point. hubby and i went to an estate sale in round rock recently and as i was perusing the living room, i noticed this sweet little old lady sitting on a recliner, under a blanket. she was yapping on her cell phone and having a discussion with her daughter, who was running the sale.

after negotiating a price on something (i can’t say what it is because it’s an upcoming birthday gift for one of the FAGs) i was told that mama was moving in with daughter … and so they were selling off her stuff. yikes! can you imagine just having to sit there, while strangers roamed through your house, buying your junk?!

bonnie and i hit our third (and final) estate sale of the day at the veranda (an upscale retirement community comprised of duplex-type housing). we were greeted by a genteel lady who announced that “everything is half off” as soon as we walked in the door. she further explained, “except anything that has a red mark on the tag. if it has a red mark, then it’s priced as marked. NOT half off. or if it’s on that table (she pointed to said table), then it’s not half off.”

sheesh. don’tcha just love it when they have to EXPLAIN their pricing rules to you?!?! reminds me of steve martin in “the jerk” when he was a carny and had to tell the dupes (carnival goers) that they could win ANY prize in this case. but being honest to a fault, he added, “anything between here and here” (carefully pointing to one little section of a shelf, filled with sorry-ass prizes).

BUT. i digress. i did find an adorable pink vintage apron (like i needed another one!!). it was marked 25 cents. but behold! it was half off! can you say 12.5 cents?! also got a sweet pink rose tin with note cards for a few pennies and a roll of tulle (whoop!), a pfalsgraff bowl and sundry other trinkets. my total there: $2

after we left, bonnie said there was an old lady on the sofa who was crying. i am sooooo frickin’ glad i didn’t see her. would’ve felt horrible about buying her apron for 12 cents. sigh.

next time i junk, it’ll be in the fall … or somewhere up north where it’s slightly cooler and less humid than central texas. it’s been over 100 degrees for a week now. i’m taking craigslist off my favorites list and will NOT look at the classifieds until october. seriously, i mean it.

i just hope nobody dies until then. okay, that was a joke. haha

enjoy the pics. they’re estate sale goodies and some project re-dos i’ve been working on. inside.

love and hugs,
terry lee

the estate sale treasure collection

the estate sale treasure collection

vintage luggage piece for $1.50. are we seeing pink yet?!

vintage luggage piece for $1.50. are we seeing pink yet?!

goodies in a bowl ... love that old ice cream scooper!!

goodies in a bowl ... love that old ice cream scooper!!

precious, precious sweet bowl, one of my faves this weekend

precious, precious sweet bowl, one of my faves this weekend

a great old aluminum cake lid

a great old aluminum cake lid

crusty old bird bath, with sweet pink-highlighted bird!

crusty old bird bath, with a sweet chippy-pink painted bird!

duck!! this treasure (who's v. heavy) was in the yard next door to where i grew up. he'll now live in my garden and quietly remind me of childhood days gone by ...

this treasure (he's v. heavy) was in the yard next door to where i grew up. he's gonna live in my garden now and quietly quack about my childhood days gone by ...

trash-picked mirror. v. heavy! found it tossed to the curb on a busy street nearby. whaa?!?! hauled it home (with the help of the FAGs). gotta love FREE.

trash-picked mirror. v. heavy! found it tossed to the curb on a busy street nearby. whaa?!?! hauled it home (with the help of the FAGs). gotta love FREE.

the mirror, after. hanging in my living room. painted it country white and glued sweet green/rose fabric to the frame.

the mirror, after. hanging in my living room. painted it country white and glued sweet green/rose fabric to the frame.

close up of yummy fabric

close up of yummy fabric

here's the church bench i mentioned in an earlier blog. found a great place for it too. in my b'fast nook! covered the cushion with an old pink chenille spread, added some sweet pillows. makes a wonderful sitting or reading area (or you may pray if you wish)

here's the church bench i mentioned in an earlier blog. found a great place for it too. in my b'fast nook! covered the cushion with an old pink chenille spread, added some sweet pillows. makes a wonderful sitting or reading area (or you may pray if you wish ... haha) oh, and this bench was free, compliments of FBC killeen, of which my children are members. they gave away the old church pews when they moved into their bigger and better building recently. praise the lord.

this was the only pic i could find of my china cabinet before the redo. anyway, it was a pretty oak ... just not shabby like i wanted.

this was the only pic i could find of my china cabinet before the redo. anyway, it was a pretty oak ... just not shabby like i wanted.

yanked off the window doors and the middle post, painted it pink and added cuphooks ... rather sweet, eh?

yanked off the window doors and the middle post, painted it pink and added cuphooks ... rather sweet, eh?

close up of my mama's virginia rose plates and cups

close up of my mama's virginia rose plates and cups in my cabinet

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welcome to my garden

hey y’all,

lazy. i must be lazy. i thought it was the heat. even the humidity. possibly my blood pressure? my thyroid?? that’s always a likely culprit. OR … i could blame it on the cancer treatments (some might call that playing the “cancer card”).

but no, it’s laziness. i confess it to you, my dear readers. all 4 of you. i just can’t seem to get myself in gear lately. or perhaps i should say i’m stuck in one gear: neutral. or is that even a gear?

okay, enough whining! i just had my 3 month oncology checkup and all is well. yea! also, i’m about to reach another milestone in this journey of survival: at the end of may, it’ll be two years since my cancer diagnosis. YEA again! thanks to each one of you for your prayers, good thoughts, words of encouragment and support. i wouldn’t be here today without you and your faithfulness.

after every good 3 month checkup, it feels as if i’ve been given a gift. another three months! which isn’t a bad thing for someone who’s learning to live ONE DAY at a time. three months sounds like a LONG time to me.

speaking of living … and having faith in the future, this is the first time in over a decade that i’ve actually planted something. i call it a garden, but it’s just barely. a garden, that is.

if you’ve done your homework, you know that we recently filled in our backyard inground pool (if not, back up and read my blog about it). it was a nasty affair, the pool and filling it in, so it seemed apropos to use that area for The Garden.

at this point, it has a little straggly apple tree (shades of charlie brown’s cmas tree … but sweet and sentimental and represents the ONE life that ben and i are making together), 3 rose bushes (significant number, for the three children i bore … and bore … and bore), two crepe myrtles (one for me, one for my sweet hubby) and a GORGEOUS vintage arch/arbor thingy i found in lampasas a couple of weekends ago. what it represents i do not know. maybe the welcoming of family and friends into our life (garden). i fell in love with it as soon as i saw it at crazy nana’s.

lordy me. but this business of planting is a painful proposition. first there’s the shopping (which i do well, unless it’s walmart and/or a payday … arghh), then the lugging of the plants/trees/soil mix/tools/gloves/pots/watering can/plant food/rose food (see?! i told you i shop well!) TO the car, then OUT of the car, then TO the patio/backyard. already i’m pooped and ready for a nap.

THEN you have the actual PLANTING of the plants. gawd-help-us. now, being the OCD middle child that i am, i had all my ducks in a row, as it were. my plants and bushes were lined up on the patio, sorted by color and variety, alphabetized and ready to plant. okay, i’m kidding about the alphabetizing. but truly, i had a PLAN for my garden. okay, so it was only in my head, but it was there: this plant would go here, that plant would go there. so on and so forth. blah blah blah.

i knew that my dear sweet hubby wanted a couple of trees, which was great (because i wanted them too). but i thought we would choose them.

together.

one day, he came home dragging a big pot with a tall stick shooting out from it.

“what is that?” i asked.

“a TREE!” he replies, and continues to drag it through the house, out the back door, straight to the virgin garden area. he grabs the shovel and before i can even speak (and that’s pretty quick) he’s already shoved the shovel into the ground.

whaaa??? what about my plans? my layout for the garden?? is that where the tree is supposed to go?!?! he has absolutely NO concept of my master plan, nor does he seem to care. i quickly weigh my options. is it worth saying something? stopping him, mid-shovel? he was determined and intent on planting that sad little stick of an apple tree.

right there. in that spot.

in the end, i didn’t have it in me to argue. i’d work around that little tree. i took it as a sign that THIS little apple tree would be the beginning of our garden, and as corny and as cheesy as it sounds, it would be a new beginning … the first day of our future. and so i pulled the bag of miracle grow over to the hole and we planted that little tree together.

i hope it survives. we’re watering it, feeding it, loving it (and yes, i’m talking to it every day … i read somewhere that it’s good to talk to plants). maybe one day it’ll surprise us with grand-apples. haha

geez this is getting long. time to stop the insanity. my word count is already 729. i can’t help it. verbosity runs in my family. my mom could never tell the simplest of stories in under an hour. i guess it’s true the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. 🙂 more gardening stories to follow … for now, enjoy the pics. and remember, it’s still a WORK IN PROGRESS!

love and hugs to all,
terry lee

The kiss of the sun for pardon,
The song of the birds for mirth,
One is nearer God’s heart in a garden
Than anywhere else on earth.
~Dorothy Frances Gurney, “Garden Thoughts”

Gardens are a form of autobiography.
~Sydney Eddison, Horticulture magazine, August/September 1993

Mary, Mary, quite contrary,
How does your garden grow?
With silver bells, and cockle shells,
And pretty maids all in a row.
~English Nursery Rhyme

great rusty crusty arch for my garden. it's flanked by two crepe myrtles which are still in need of planting ...

great rusty crusty arch for my garden. it's flanked by two crepe myrtles which are still in need of planting ...

close up of arch design

close up of arch design

our little apple tree. bless its heart.

our little apple tree. bless its heart.

i call these my strawberry-banana roses ... pink and yellow

i call these my strawberry-banana roses ... pink and yellow

i think this is such a beautiful pink

i think this is such a beautiful pink

had to have yellow (rose of texas)

had to have yellow (rose of texas)

my three little rose bushes ... for alan, tara and matt

my three little rose bushes ... for alan, tara and matt

tara admires her work

tara admires her work

my patio table with new cushions and lovely pink begonias ... with a view of The Garden ... love that arch!

my patio table with new cushions and lovely pink begonias ... with a view of The Garden ... love that arch!

searched high and low for just the right cushions. didn't find them high, but found them at lowe's. haha

searched high and low for just the right cushions. didn't find them high, but found them at lowe's. haha

my patio makeover. it used to be verrrrry scary. now it's an outside room! very lovely and inviting. love it!

my patio makeover. it used to be verrrrry scary. now it's an outside room! very lovely and inviting. love it!

found these beads at the GW barn last week for 75c. they were a tangled mess that took hours to straighten out. but worth it!

found these beads at the GW barn last week for 75c. they were a tangled mess that took hours to straighten out. but worth it!

when the wind stirs the beads, it reminds me of raindrops. a perfect place for those silly 70s disco ball beads!

when the wind stirs the beads, it reminds me of raindrops. a perfect place for those silly 70s disco ball beads!

sort've the focal point of my patio ... an old metal shelf i picked up for a dollar. put some real sweeties on it (love my rose plates, saucers, cups, etc) and flanked it all with the two tall white shutters i got for a song at the lampasas city-wide

sort've the focal point of my patio ... an old metal shelf i picked up for a dollar. put some real sweeties on it (love my rose plates, saucers, cups, etc) and flanked it all with the two tall white shutters i got for a song at the lampasas city-wide

another view of my patio room ...

another view of my patio room ...

LOVE these pink hydrangeas! set them next to an old lawn chair covered in a vintage pink and white bedsheet, finished off with a pink pillow from big lots.

LOVE these pink hydrangeas! set them next to an old lawn chair covered in a vintage pink and white bedsheet, finished off with a pink pillow from big lots.

lace chandie i bought from sue a while back. added some color by putting pink roses on the ends

lace chandie i bought from sue a while back. added some color by putting pink roses on the ends

the little white wicker chair (from sue's) is perfect for my flowers!

the little white wicker chair (from sue's) is perfect for my flowers!

this is an old cracker barrel rocker that i found a few years back at an antique mall. painted it antique white and had been using it inside. i think it looks great on my patio. the mosaic piece next to it was marked way down at 'tuesday morning' because of a small chipped area. lucky me!

this is an old cracker barrel rocker that i found a few years back at an antique mall. painted it antique white and had been using it inside. i think it looks great on my patio. the mosaic piece next to it was marked way down at 'tuesday morning' because of a small chipped area. lucky me!

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