house tour tuesday: mr. handyman and mrs. go-getter’s house

i’ve always wanted to go on one of those old house tours in old towne orange. ya know, the one they have every year? it kinda reminds me of the show house hunters. (i love that show!)

you’d think i would have gone on one by now with my love of old homes, but nope. not a one. i’ve either been sick, out of town, or having a baby.

bummer.

so, i thought of a lil plan to get to peep in and catch a glance of these beauties.

the plan?

to just ask for a tour and guess what? the homeowners said, “Yes!” who woulda thought?!

so set your DVRs to the furniture finder channel (er….blog) every tuesday and come tour a home with me! (btw, by the time you see this post it will be wednesday, because it’s been a busy couple of days. and if you know me, you know time management is not my strong suite. so, lets just pretend it’s tuesday and next week i’ll be a lil more on the ball. deal?)

first up! a home near and dear to my heart…a project i have been working on with my sweet clients, since the fall of this last year.

this home may not be old. in fact, it’s an eighties child, but it’s getting updated or undated or brought back to a date that is way before the eighties (or way after the eighties. i’m not sure, but whatever it is, it’s not the eighties!). it’s a style i like to call rustic old world. (also, it was about 11:30 by the time we got to install everything in the room, so the pictures are a bit blurry. just cross your eyes as you’re viewing and you won’t notice a thing.)

living room after

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living room before
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what do ya think?

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dining room after

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dining room before

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for the life of me, i can’t find the before pic of the fireplace. imagine eighties pink granite and dark red cherry cabinets on either side. it was a sight.

fireplace after

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(we are still deciding on chairs for in front of the fireplace. we found some amazing rustic wicker wingbacks that i think would be perfect! oh, and the artwork is getting painted today for above the mantel. i just got excited and threw this up there, so i could take a picture. also imagine lots of firewood stacked in the alcoves on the sides of the fireplace.) 

my clients are a powerhouse couple. the wife is a go-getter (my kinda lady! you give her a task and she gets the job done) and her hubby is mr. handyman. he did all the tile on the fireplace and built that awesome rustic fireplace mantel. 

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mrs. go-getter and i did a whirlwind shopping trip yesterday for accessories and finishing details. we shopped for NINE hours straight! it.was.AWESOME! we’re a good decorating team. we have similar taste, so this project was a lot of fun.

entryway after

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mr. handyman installed all of the faux board and batten in the entry. it continues down the hall that will feature old, chippy doors hung on the horizontal with a picture gallery displayed on top. i’ll make sure to add pictures as soon as it’s completed. we still have a lot to do, but it’s a great start!

thanks for all of your hard work mr. handyman and mrs. go-getter! it’s been a blast working with you. i can’t wait to start on the kitchen!

see you all next tuesday for the next episode of house tour tuesday! (hint: you might be green with envy or tickled pink)

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it’s a beautiful day in the neighborhood

you can’t help, but start to sing that song when you hear it.

then the image follows of Mr. Rogers carefully undoing his shoe laces, taking off his shoes and gracefully throwing them into his opposite hand.

when i was little, i used to act that out every time i sat down to put on or take off my shoes.

actually, i still do. (okay, maybe just in my head)

now, i hadn’t planned on this post being about Mr. Rogers. I just really liked the catchy phrase from his song and thought it would be a fun title.

i had planned on talking about the wonderful neighborhood that surrounds our home and all of the beautiful houses i like to admire with white picket fences.

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but see, while i was singing that song my curiousity about Mr. Rogers grew.

So, i decided to google him. have you every googled him? Oh.My.Word. what a man!

did you know that Mr. Rogers was so well liked by the public that when his Impala was stolen outside of his tv studio and he later reported it, the thieves returned his car. in the exact spot it was stolen. with an apology note.

the note said, “if we’d known it was yours, we would have never taken it.”

holy moly. that’s impressive.

i also learned that Mr. Rogers was a very tolerant man. He loved everybody.

It didn’t matter if you lived in a

yellow house,

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a pink house,

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or even a house with bright colors.

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he would always say to them, “God loves you just the way you are.”

he truly sounded like the most perfect neighbor. how cool would that be. to have Mr. Rogers as a neighbor? i wonder what kind of house he would live in.

would it be big?

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would it have a wrap around porch?

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or look like a saloon?

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or maybe he would have a house that looked like it was built for a hobbit?

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one thing is for sure. it wouldn’t be the color blue. i guess he was color blind.

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he was also a perfectionist. i bet his yard would be the best on the block.

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apparently, he was so well disciplined he remained 143 pounds for 30 years. which was convenient because he loved the number 143. why? because according to Mr. Rogers the number 143 means ‘i love you.’ 1 letter to say i, 4 letters to say love, and 3 letters to say you.

how precious is that.

he seemed a very humble man. i bet his home would be cute and practical.

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whatever it would be, i know one thing is for sure….. it would be a beautiful day in the neighborhood.

oh, Mr. Rogers, won’t you be my neighbor?

for the love of burlap

remember the burlap craze!?

if there was a project to be done, there was burlap included.

first, i made a door hanger, from burlap of course, for my parent’s 40th wedding anniversary

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i was all over the burlap trend.

my hubby, not so much. he said it smelled.

it did.

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i still loved it and its vintage, rustic texture and neutral color.

it reminded me of being on a farm. tending to the animals and walking through the cornfields. (i’m not sure how i got all of that from burlap.)

see i had to buy burlap because it was affordable (*ahem* cheap *ahem*) and most of my projects were quick diy-ers that i just didn’t have time or money to mess up on expensive fabric.

i wasn’t entirely sure how to use my sewing machine at the time, so i used my hot glue gun (gasp) to make burlap pillows. i loved them!

my hubby hated them. he said they were scratchy.

they were.

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those pillows had to be kicked out and find a new home.

they did.

on our front porch.

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i made ribbon out of burlap to hang my wreaths

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(it’s there. can you see it?)

yup. i used burlap on almost everything i could find. chair cushions, bunting, lampshades, as a matte in picture frames.

and then one day my love of burlap turned into my love of old paper. So…

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you guessed it.

everything. everything was made out of old paper.

but, i still love you burlap. perhaps we’ll meet again someday. if only i can convince the hubby of your charm.

stool. it’s one of those words if you say too many times, it starts to sound weird.

today, i fixed up the cute little yellow stool i found on the curb the other night.

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i really loved the bright, sunshine yellow (or maybe it’s more of a goldish yellow), anywho, i knew i wanted to keep that.

the top, however, was a little….as my son said, “dirty.” it needed a little love.

i grabbed my sandpaper and went to town. and then i realized that getting to that town was going take forever, so i grabbed my power sander.

much better.

after a few long minutes, it was back to the original wood.

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i used a cloth and rubbed on my favorite stain, miniwax “old american.” then put a coat of poly after the stain dried.

viola’! all done and looking farmhouse fresh! (and maybe a little rustic, since the stain didn’t evenly take. that’s ok. this is a kid’s stool that will be well loved and banged up, i’m sure.)

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now our new, little, yellow curbside stool is happy with its stool buddies. (the red one i found at the Goodwill and the white one was also a curbside find!)

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(does using the word stool so many times sound a little wrong? or maybe a little dirty? perhaps it’s just me.)

also, i think this means that i officially have a stool collection or a sample of stools? okay. i’ll stop.

how about you? are you a fan of stools?

it was a G thing

i found some new stuff.

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i was on my way to the park with my family when i spotted it.

Actually, i was on my way to our second park because the first one had a gate and a sign that said closed (who knew parks closed in mid-day?). normally i don’t drive down the street that i spotted the stuff because it would be the long way to our home. since we weren’t headed home….i took the long way.

so glad i did!

i flew passed the curbside freebies and braked  (or is it broke?) as fast as i could. i quickly reversed the car back to the stuff to see if there was anything worth salvaging. there were a few pieces i got a little giddy about.

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as i was picking through the pile a car drove into the driveway. i paused for a minute, more out of embarrassment that i was picking through their belongings, and then quickly regained my salvage spirit. as the driver got out of the car she glanced my way, so i shot her a huge grin and said, “hey, is it okay if i take this stuff?”

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it wasn’t hers. phew! (no more embarrassment)

then she called to another neighbor, “hey, is this stuff okay to take?”

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a women about my age appeared. she looked tired. she was very thin with long jet black hair, covered in tattoos and smoking a cigarette.

she nonchalantly and without eye contact answered, “yes.” i said, “thank you,” and i kept picking through the pile.

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from there, i’m not sure how it happened, but before i knew it the woman and i were talking about furniture and our love for all things old. and how she collected really awesome old doors and windows. “oh, and i have this cool old table in my backyard, ya wanna see?”

yes, yes i would.

she showed me the table. it was rough from being neglected, but i could still see the beauty.

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we continued to talk and she continued to show me the treasures that showered her backyard. her earlier tiredness seemed to be disappearing.

i think at one point i even half jokingly said we were like “soul sisters” because we were bonding so much over our love of old things. it had only been two minutes since i first met this person.

then i remembered that my husband was waiting in the car with our son to go to the park. thank the Lord for patient husbands who understand your overly awkward love for old furniture, especially old free curbside finds.

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the lady and i decided at that point that i should come back with our truck to pick up some of the stuff she had showed me. we also decided to exchange phone numbers, in the event that she couldn’t fit all of her treasures into her storage unit and needed to find them a home. (oops…forgot to tell you that part. her and her husband and kids were moving. and in a hurry.)

see, i guess what i didn’t know at that moment, was that she had been crying earlier because her and her husband needed to clear their things out of their home and she didn’t have room to take them and couldn’t bare to just leave her treasures behind.

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i think i’m getting ahead of myself…let me back up. those who know me well, know that this is often how i tell my stories. i tend to jump around. i have lots of random side notes. hopefully, ya’ll (no, i’m not from the south. i just think it’s cute when i hear the other bloggers say that and so i’m going to pretend i can say it, too) are still following me.

my husband, son, and i headed to the park. i had this strange feeling and mentioned to my husband that the series of events seemed more than just finding curbside freebies, it’s like a G thing. G thing being God thing. (side note: i have no idea why i used an acronym for God, but hearing and reading catchy phrases like o.m.g, and cray cray, has apparently leaked into my vocabulary).  see, i don’t normally say that. that it was a God thing. it sometimes sounds a little cliche’ to me. i very much believe in God and very much believe in events being orchestrated by God, but i don’t say that it’s a God thing unless it really hits me, smacks me, pushes me to my knees, kind of God thing.

This was one of those times.

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it’s hard to really articulate why. i guess you might have had to be there, but it just had that feeling. ya, know?

after we got home from the park, i grabbed the quote i had typed out the day before by Ernest Hemingway: “eventually, life breaks us all, and, afterward, many are stronger in the broken pieces.” i tied the quote to an extra skeleton key i had, hoping she adored them as much as i do, and i hit the road in our truck back to her house.

when i got there i handed her my little gift of thanks and said that the quote was one i thought might bring her comfort in her time of hardship. she welled up and i gave her a big hug. such an odd spectrum of emotions to share with someone i had just met an hour earlier. that was definitely not an everyday occurrence.

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(side note: she loves plants. like LOVES plants. she had hundreds in her backyard. i was nervous to take them because i don’t have the best green thumb, but she was quite worried about leaving behind this key lime tree. she said she was sure they wouldn’t have room. i told her i would take good care of it. and maybe even attempt a key lime pie}

when we started talking, early into our conversation, she said something that gave me goosebumps. at this point we hadn’t talked at all about our religious views or our faith or whether we had any or not. see, i’m kind of shy about sharing my faith. sure, if someone asks then I’ll tell them, but it’s not something i just hand out. i admire those that can so freely. it’s just not my gift. she mentioned that her mom was very religious and a hard core Christian and always telling her she needed to find Jesus! She kind of rolled her eyes and then she said, “ya know, it’s like i’m being smacked in the face by all the stuff my mom has said. i always tell her that if God really cares, then why doesn’t he help me when i need him most? and then, you come along and love my stuff  and i know it’s going to a good home and i don’t have to give it all to Goodwill. and my tree will get taken care of . and well, we start talking and well…it’s like a God thing.”

oh.my.gosh. she was right. it was a God thing.

the best part? i felt like it was God smacking ME and saying, “hey, hey, you! remember me? don’t forget about me now that times are going good. i want to be with you always, not just during the hard times.” i needed that reminder.

so, back to what i was saying….tonight i found some stuff, and it wasn’t just furniture.