Monday, August 22, 2011

The Yard-Sale Motherload

I don't go out of my way to go to yard sales, and I often pass right by those that are on my way.  Nine times out of ten, I find that the useless junk someone is selling is also useless to me. But one time out of ten, approximately, there's that something that's worth finding, which is why I occasionally stop to take a look.  On Saturday, I took a stroll through one about fifteen houses down from mine, and found it was chock full of amazing stuff.  It was clear that someone with really good taste had been collecting things for a very long time, but there was nothing I needed, and there were no prices on anything, and I assumed the person with really good taste doing the selling recognized the value, so I left. 

Two hours later, because I couldn't get all the amazing stuff off my mind, I checked Craigslist and saw that the yard sale was over and they were giving away everything that was left.  What??  My sister-in-law was visiting and we hopped in the car and sped down the street.  This yard sale had nothing I needed, but a whole lot of things I really, really, really wanted, and FREE opens up a whole new world of possibility.  It was a dizzing hour of picking and deliberating and contemplating, briefly interrupted by a monsoon, which we patiently waited out under a tree, still with grins on our faces.  Even my neice (5) and nephew (3) got into it, finding some coloring books and pens and bubble bath and a video game among the true gems their mother and aunt were salivating over.

So, here's what I got:

Check out the detail on the rocker, and what great condition the wood is in:

a large distressed frame, a mini ?nightstand?, a long basket, 2 silver trays and a ceramic planter
Those silver trays cleaned up nice.

I realize that some people might think FREE was just about the right price for those chairs, but they are solid and in great condition.  With new uphostery, which I'll do myself, I will make them beautiful.  Just you wait.
Even though I think these chairs are incredible with amazing potential, I did spend a lot of time laboring over whether or not I should take all three.  You see, I don't know what I'm going to do with them. This concerned me even more when the owner told me that his wife had been collecting and keeping all her beautiful finds in the basement for the last twenty years.  She told me she just didn't have enough time to do all the projects she wanted to do.  Her husband offered to deliver the goods to my house and put them in my basement himself- that's how badly he wanted them gone. 

I am now committing, declaring, right here on this blog, that I will have these chairs finished in six months, so I don't end up giving away all of my beautiful finds on a rainy day in August twenty years from now.  I'm thinking the rocker will go in one of the bedrooms, and the arm chairs will either replace one of two sets of chairs in the living room (but which do I give up??) or they will go on the porch, as part of my long-term goal to make the porch a real room, moving the outdoor furniture outdoors.

Saturday was my kind of day.  I had nothing planned- no to-do list, no goals to accomplish, no set ideas about how I was going to make the most of the day.  I got great free stuff and I had people with me who enjoyed it as much as I did.  The afternoon excitement was followed by an evening on the porch with cool breezes, some delicious bruschetta I whipped up using garlic, eggplant and tomatoes from the garden, corn on the cob, and burgers on the grill.    Did you have a good weekend?

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