Monday Musings

Oh Happy Monday beautiful people! Seems like we were just here, right? Once again it’s late evening as I write this reflecting back on the week and all that’s gone on.

On a positive, exciting note for me, I’ve had a lot of sales with my furniture business! Just when I start thinking I may grow into an old furniture lady surrounded by beautiful relics, things sell.

I had sold several pieces last week, then a woman saw a chair I had done and was selling online, went crazy over my stuff and has bought up every finished chair I had, as well as every unfinished, and even one I had to go out and find to get her an even number of 8.

She also bought an unfinished telephone bench I had, and has custom ordered a 7ft antique buffet that I haven’t gotten to yet.

Wow.

Funny thing about the chairs, I had finished several and was planning to take them into my shop. I stood there thinking ” I hope the people who love chairs show up soon”

Then the next day this lady comes into my life.  She is off the chart crazy over my work and I’ll be busy finishing her order in the upcoming next week or two.

Now I’m realizing all my unfinished projects I’ve had waiting for me have dwindled down and I’m hunting for more things to do. I’m also realizing the holiday season will be here in a few months and I need to be thinking of things to keep my little shop area full of goodies for customers.

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I love this wall in my little room 🙂

If you want to read more about my journey into this process, you can find it here

https://sassyfitnesschick.com/2018/07/25/the-journey-of-opening-a-vintage-business/

I’m still a working woman….

I mentioned last week I was helping my son out for awhile at his shop… that combined with my projects above is enough to keep me running right now. I try most days to assemble healthy foods to take with me.

Salads, as I’ve mentioned before are one of my favorite lunch meals because they are satisfying and nutritious as well as leave me feeling energetic and not lethargic from a big meal

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it’s really ok to mix fruits and veggies 😉

 

When people ask me what I “take” to stay healthy and fit…. this… is more important than anything. Lots of colorful fruits and veggies are what I “take”. ** not shown or getting to make an appearance, my two hard boiled eggs on the sidelines. Gotta have that protein. **  😉

On the topic of food… I tried a couple new recipes this week… maybe not so light on calories… but definitely tasty

https://www.plainchicken.com/2009/01/creamy-chicken-casserole.html

http://bestrecipesww.com/philly-cheese-steak-sloppy-joes-recipe/

( ok the recipes are being brat’s and not appearing to link properly… both the chicken casserole and philly sloppy joes were big hits )

In the ways of technical stuff….

I may have been whining… I mean…uh… sharing….. with you that my Garmin bit the dust. Well, I mean it was working , it just kinda lost it’s top. I could still hear it making various sounds I had become accustomed to but, well, it’s inside were hanging out and as you can imagine, that was a wee bit of a problem.

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turns out according to Garmin, they had some issues with the adhesive that holds the face plate on.  So after a bit of communication, I had signed up to get the new Vivoactive 3. (For the record, they are really awesome to work with on issues like this)

It’s just like the Vivoactive HR I’ve worn for two years, but more refined, enhanced and well. prettier looking.

I decided I needed the white and rose gold….

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So pretty all still packaged….waiting…

Of course one of it’s new features is that it looks more like a watch than the rectangular Vivoactive HR.

It’s got lots of other cool stuff too, but that will have to wait for my review on it in a few weeks.

For now, I am a happy camper to have it tracking me and using it for my training again.

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it’s so pretty… out for it’s first workout 😉

I’m finding that the heart rate tracker ( which was pretty accurate before) is really even more fine tuned now as it captures more data than previously. My resting heart rate can bounce between the 40’s and 50’s beats per minute (bpm)

remember boys and girls, when we do cardio training, our heart is a muscle that gets strong too. A lower resting rate is a good indicator that your cardio work is paying off and your heart doesn’t have to work as hard.

The watch has so many awesome features. One of the best improvements is the all touch screen and it’s high level of responsiveness.  It has good back light and a large, easy to read screen.

Gosh. I’m sounding like a commercial here.

Ok, let’s just say it’s impressed me and I’ve only had it a few days. I love figuring all the techie stuff out on it ( well, mostly) and I know I still have a lot to learn  ( I think  I’ll catch on)

Oh, and it comes in black on black to which I almost got as black is one of my signature colors, but gosh, ya know the white and rose gold just won out.

I do promise a better review and not just a tease on my Monday Musings about it.

Oh, speaking of writing.

I’m working on some fun posts and (hopefully) a relevant series for women on menopause ( OMG did I just use that word in public?!)  partly, I’m educating myself as I know some day it will happen and I just like to know and understand things. The other part is I want to educate women better on this topic. In todays day of anything goes and everything is talked about, I’m constantly shocked at how this is still whispered behind a hand or met with some shocked silence.  Why?

So I am wanting to do a little series on the topic examining varies things about it, how to deal with it and some self care ideas as well.  I know I have a large readership of you, men, out there. You can read along too as I’m sure you have women in your life as this topic will affect them at some point too.

I did write an article called Menopause, Muscles and Middle Age, you can find here while you wait for me to get my act together on that series. https://sassyfitnesschick.com/2017/05/10/menopause-muscles-and-middle-age/

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 I do love the strong bold lines of this watch as well.

That’s a wrap for now. Make it a good week, smile and remember to make time for yourself.

Now tell me… do you use a sports watch? If so, what is it and what do you love most about it?

 

 

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Monday Musings

Hello world and welcome to another edition of Monday Musings!

It’s been a crazy weekend and as I write this ( late Sunday evening) it feels amazing to finally sit and get comfy and chill for awhile.

I’m listening to thunder in the distance and the sound of rain falling outside on my deck. Heaven knows we really need the rain here so I’m grateful for that. I also kinda like the sound of evening storms. Do you ?

We hosted my grandsons 6th birthday party this weekend so we were all pretty happy the rain held off all Saturday for his party. We had one of those huge inflatable water slides and probably didn’t need any extra water to go with it 😉

On a side note… you know it IS true…. grandkids are all the amazing things your friends always whispered to you before you had them.. but you thought they were lying or crazy or some other adjective.

Anyway, we did the party, he had a blast and that’s what matters.

I still have an obscene amount of balloons gracing my dining room….

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I finally got some time to work on some of my projects for my space at the Vintage store. If you missed my post on my journey into a vintage business, find it here.  https://sassyfitnesschick.com/2018/07/25/the-journey-of-opening-a-vintage-business/

I love doing small things to fill in at my shop. I scooped this little wood caddy up on a local garage sale site this week.

It was kinda…. well…. sad… but I was already envisioning it’s future beauty….

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Pathetic, right?

But then… just give me a little time with something and then this happens…..

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Does it even look the same now ??

Look inside… I love this…

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Uh…yeah it was a pain in the butt cutting out those squares but so worth it 🙂

I think it came out super cute… such a bright cheery little thing now compared to its former self 🙂

Oh and I’m pretty excited to have had several people contact me to do custom orders for them. Meaning, they have a piece they want me to do some wizardry on.

One girl has a 7 foot buffet. For the love of heaven… nothing small….

I had been chatting with her answering questions, looking at pics and she messaged one night asking if I had an estimate together. I took a deep breath, finished it off, and sent it thinking she’d either decline my price or take it.

The next morning her message simply read… “When can I bring it by?”

Ha… I guess I got the job.

My weekends need to be productive ’cause I’ve kinda signed on to help my son at his shop for awhile since the woman who typically is up front is off gallivanting on a month plus long vacay.

Which means I’m like… a working outside the home kinda woman…  most of the week.

Gah.

So my mornings start with me hitting the floor early to get my workout in, showering and eating yogurt and berries while I get ready at Ninja speeds so I can get in to the shop at a reasonable time.

My “boss” knows I’m training for a duathlon so he’s willing to work with my training schedule 😉

Oh yeah speaking of that…..

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I already rode up this sucker, now the fun part 😉

How about a look down one of the hills I ride on the regular?  and don’t be jealous of my snappy Cannondale bike.

So I get some training in before I go to work…..

My son has a small engine repair shop. I run the front taking in orders, checking people out, answering phone and doing anything else he throws at me.

Like helping him lift a heavy generator into the back of a truck.

Those “Practice”  squats and deadlifts  in my workouts do have pay offs for real life 😛

I had forgotten how… “fun”…. dealing with the public can be in customer service ways or how people can have such high demands and well, gosh, they can be horribly rude.

One customer… “well, I’m not happy. I had this in here for repair recently and it doesn’t seem to be working now.”

Me: “Ok, well when was it in? If it’s recent then we can fix it under warranty, no problem. ”

Customer… “yeah it was in March I think.”

Me: ” Uh… so you mean like about 6 months ago….”

( I always use my smile when I’m dealing out an obvious statement to Mr. Customer)

Then you find out they were using it and ran over a rock or a stump…. like no.. we are not responsible for fixing your stuff for free when you trash it, just because you had it in here 6 months before…

And yes, yes they do expect that.

Or they want stuff fixed but don’t want to pay for what needs to be done, like fix it for free or do just enough to make it work but not do the actual work to fix problem so they can come back and complain.

The other day this man was ranting about a charge for a pick up and delivery fee ( which is the cheapest in town for this service) he’s… older… one day he’s asking me if I’d come cut his grass and telling me he’d make me zucchini bread and the next he’s ranting about the charge and how he’s gonna write negative reviews on us and blah, blah, blah, I just casually tell him no worries we’ll be fine, and may I please have his card number?

Threats are always great too.

When he called back to ask about the exact charge to his card, I told him, as I asked if he’d like a receipt I heard a weird noise and realized he’d just simply hung up on me.

Ah yes. The world of customer service.

I’m constantly amazed not just working there but out in the rest of the world, how horribly awful people can behave to workers behind the counter….like they have a given right to treat them badly…. just because….

I’ve seen to many people go off on baristas at Starbucks over a drink. Like for real. Even if it’s not right, can’t you be decent, talk nicely, and state the problem?

Didn’t your mommy teach you to be polite and respectful ?

The world would be a nicer place if we all took a deep breath and smiled a little, right?

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Saturday morning… coffee n braids 😉 I love my Starbucks baristas.

 

How has your week been? Any new adventures? Any thoughts on the world of customer service? How do you feel when someone is acting poorly to a person behind the counter?

The Art Of Flipping Furniture

So I’ve been promising this post to you for awhile and I’ve got plenty of time on my hands and ideas in my head so I’m gonna do it.  Back when I started my blog I sometimes wrestled with going off the beaten path of what my brand is, what I’m about, and what the blog ultimately is about.

But then I’ve got this cool published author friend and she said “you are more than just a health and fitness whiz. There is a whole lot more to who you are and what you do than “just” that.  Your readers will want a well rounded version of you. Share life with them”

Since that time, I’ve heeded her advice and will often bring posts that have nothing to do with the overarching theme of what my blog primarily is. But I do bring life stuff. And I am well rounded haha and I do have fun letting loose on other topics… so for todays offerings… here we go…

I’ve shared tidbits with you about another part of my life, my obsession, or rather “hobby”.

Yes, let’s call it a hobby shall we ?

I have offered up some of my projects in my Monday Musings just because it gives me an outlet to kinda show some of it off.

https://sassyfitnesschick.com/2018/05/21/monday-musings-12/

https://sassyfitnesschick.com/2018/04/23/monday-musings-10/

https://sassyfitnesschick.com/2018/04/02/monday-musings-8/

It’s a hobby that’s turning into a little side business.

Hobby. Obsession. Business.

Where is the dividing line? Questions to be pondered….

If you’ve missed it, I’m referring to my flipping vintage and antique furniture.

I’ve shared photos of horrible pieces I’ve dragged home and transformed. For some reason, the worse it is, the more I like it.

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The Charger never gets to go on furniture runs with me. On this day, I had to get creative….

 

I’m pretty sure it’s ’cause in general, I just like challenges. And believe me some have presented some challenges. It makes me appreciate an easy, straight forward piece sooooo much more!

Don’t get me wrong, I can appreciate a stunning old piece when it comes around. But if it’s a piece that I think I’d leave “as is” then that leaves me out. I just won’t ruin something that has made it’s way through time and is still in a beautiful, usable condition.

Other things though, they haven’t fared so well. Neglect, cheap wood, flaking varnish, sun exposure, veneer damage … the list can go on…. those items are begging for a fresh look.

I’ve said it before, just because it’s old doesn’t mean it’s in the best shape to restore to some former glory.

And honestly today, many people don’t want bland, standard, varnished brown furniture. They want bright, crisp, clean looks in their homes.

They want something unique you can’t pick up at Ikea or Target. They want real, solid wood furniture and they want a piece that will enhance a part of their home.

Of course I also know the value of a beautiful piece, the wood quality, and that even if it stays in imperfect condition, it’s more beautiful in that look.

So what I do with it largely depends on what it is and it’s overall condition and how it can be given new life and function in todays world.

How long have you been doing this?

That’s a question I’ve fielded a lot lately since people who know me see it as a “new” thing.

Well, it kinda is. Meaning I really haven’t done this for long.

Actually, I kinda just stumbled into this arena and it turns out I’m good at it.

Go figure.

People actually like my stuff.

I never saw myself as the creative, artsy type. My mom was ridiculously talented in painting. I mean she could paint roses that looked like they were blooming off a plate. She had stunning penmanship when she was healthy before it became harder for her to write.  She could paint outdoor scenery and all kinds of amazing things.

She tried with me. I remember one year she bought me this whole cool set on painting and flowers and all things lovely. She showed me some simple steps to making a rose.

Honestly, mine looked like those little flowers you doodle out in 5th grade art class.  Why didn’t my rose look like it came off “Rose Month” magazine??

I yielded to the idea that the artsy gene skipped me. Just like the amazing green thumb my father had skipped me as well.

Plants come home from the store to die with me but that my readers, is another post for another day.

I grew up and accepted the talents and skills I had, even though my mom secretly believed  I had it in me.

I do have a very creative mind. It’s just my creativity has always flowed in other directions.

I had done some creative “repair” work in the past on much smaller objects. In a post I shared about cardboard Christmas houses, I talked about doing some restoration work on a few.

https://sassyfitnesschick.com/2015/12/22/favorite-things-of-christmas/

Not tacky with big plastic modern day Santa’s but more of a desire to keep it as close to original form as I could.

That perhaps, was the breeding ground for where I am now. And maybe, in a different type of way, I really did get some of her art skills.

The thrill of the hunt

Part of what excites me really in this process is hunting for that piece that speaks to me.

Oh, and that I can afford. Obviously, flipping furniture I won’t pay the crazy amount some people want for stuff. If it’s a piece I personally want then I don’t mind spending a bit more.

So there’s the hunt. The looking for the right item, the right price, and then hoping I can be the one to swoop it up before someone else does. I want wood, not fake stuff and I overall prefer vintage or antique although I will take a modern piece if it’s super cool and I can see a vision for it ( I picked up a little carved table last month, did my magic on it, listed and sold it in under 30 minutes. I could’ve sold it 8 times. Go figure)

Nothing is more disappointing than starting to love a piece, seeing a vision for it, and then it sells out from under me.

I’ve told myself… “don’t start planning or celebrating ’til you’re driving home with it”  then I can let my ideas out.

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Now… now I can cheer and let those visions and ideas run loose. I bagged the game!

 

The visions

Ok so it sounded crazy to me until I read some other posts by people who flip furniture and they would get visions for how it should look. Sometimes, the idea is so strong and powerful in my head I act on it immediately. Last week, I swooped up this feminine sweet chair that had seen better days. I immediately knew how to do it, even stopping at the hobby store on the way home and finding the exact fabric I wanted for its new cushion.  It has been one of my most favorite pieces so far.

I’ll let you take a look at it below….

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Before…. old original cushion, flakey finish and paint splatters from someone else’s project… but isn’t she sweet under it all?
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Look at her new beauty revealed 🙂
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I didn’t NEED another project chair, but as you may guess, the details drew me into this one…

 

I can’t tell you how vivid and clear the vision was for this. So much so that I bumped it to the top of my list to do it. I love having things come out of my head and seeing them come to life just as I imagined.

Ok I’ll share another project chair I finished this week too. I got it in a group of three. Chairs haven’t been something I had previously gone after but they are often old unmarried pieces and make fun, interesting and unique accent chairs. I love the idea each one can have it’s own look and theme,

When I saw this chair group I caught an immediate vision for one. I have a plan for a second and it is currently in the works.

I wanted to make one bold and fun. I went back for fabric I passed on when I did my telephone bench. I didn’t “feel” it for that project. But when I saw the chair I knew I had to go back for this particular material for it.

Check it out and you’ll see what I mean….

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Tired, worn, faded yet still have life lurking underneath….

 

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Yes. Pink. I love how the dark wax softens it while still letting it be bold. My free spirit wanted to do this piece
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Those legs….
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A playful cushion to go with it’s sassy color

 

To paint or not to paint?

As I mentioned above I have a healthy respect for quality wood pieces and if they need to be left and oiled and preserved then I will do that. For instance I shared in a post about this cool, massive dresser/cabinet with a huge mirror. A stunning piece I got off Craigslist for 80.00.

After dragging all it’s parts home and researching I learn it’s made of quarter sawn oak ( such beautiful wood) and most likely early 1900 in construction.  I was stunned that this piece was left behind and the other stuff he had for sale was gone.

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Thankfully he had the beautiful scrolled wood piece to attach to top of mirror. The mirror is filthy. It also weighs a ton. I’ve been cleaning hardware and it’s actually shiny under that dirt and grime!

 

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Lucky me. I think it’s very unusual and perhaps a bit rare. I’ve found nothing like it at all in my searchings.  Items similar, but nothing like this piece.

I’m carefully oiling it, cleaning it, and allowing it’s 100+ vibe to shine through.  That’s it. I’d never consider painting it.

However, for so many other projects, paint is a improvement and help to it’s overall abuse and sad condition. Sometimes there are repairs that need done as well as various issues the piece may have and a lovely coat of paint and sometimes some wax or antiquing gives it a fresh new look ready for more years of service.

Chalk paint is my favorite medium to operate in. Not only is it super easy to work with, it’s extremely forgiving as well. Not only that, I make my own now so my colors schemes are endless and I can match a perfect color for a project as I did with my pink chair above.  After sanding and topcoat the finish is silky smooth and beautiful.

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Cute early 1920s’ serpentine dresser… but in needy shape

 

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Smooth silky chalk paint and an ebony stained top gives this a fresh new look for years ahead… I loved this piece… it’s now in my entryway 😉

 

Ok a peek at one I finished up this past week….

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it started off looking kinda like this….

I bought this from a guy who was older and said he had found it in his grandmothers attic and was cleaning out. Solid wood, 2 tiered, and cute little clawed feet I was immediately drawn to it, a fun antique piece.

It also felt “masculine” to me so I felt an immediate connection with what I wanted to do with it. I mentioned enjoying straight forward pieces? This was one of those. I love how it came out… I’ll let you take a look….

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Chalk painted in slate blue with black wax

 

 

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I love it’s little claw feet 🙂

Yeah, blue with black wax to pull out all of it’s lovely details.  It was a good combination for a masculine table.

It’s always so satisfying seeing something drab, dirty, tired and left and forgotten about turn into a usable, fun piece for years ahead.

What next?

Well, let’s just say, I’m not at a loss for projects. I’ve got several things in the works and several in the wings waiting.

Of course, that doesn’t stop me from hunting for good deals to still drag home.

I’m working on coming up with a separate name and a separate identity for my “hobby”.  I am learning new things all the time and am blessed to have connections with a few talented people who do this as well.

Tomorrow, stay tuned for the final part of my sharing on this topic. ( I was trying to not write another War and Peace novel 😉 )

I’ll share a bit more on a question that’s been posed a couple times… “well, don’t you just put paint on it?”

Well.. kinda…eventually… yes.

But what happens before the fun part of painting? This is where any creative artist earns their money… and that’s all I’m gonna say… you’ll just have to come back and find out the rest in the final part of this project 😉 Check in tomorrow….

Tell me.. do you have a favorite hobby? Have you ever started something randomly and seen it grow and take off in your life?

Monday Musings

Welcome to another edition of Monday Musings.  You know what’s been on my mind this week? Wondering how much wet, sloppy, soggy, foggy, soupy grey weather you have to be in before your feet start getting webbed.

I’m seriously so over it. I took off for a run on Friday, like I just don’t care anymore. Either run, or lay on the sofa and drink coffee.

Nah not really.

I’d do strength training or some other indoor activity. Ha rowing! That is an appropriate activity for such hideous weather.

We’ve had more grey, wet weather than sun this year.

South Texas people. This isn’t Seattle but the weather gods don’t seem to know that.

But today… as I write this… we had sun.

Sweet glorious, beautiful sun. Blue skies. Warm air.

I wanted to just act like a huge lizard and lay out in it but alas, I had projects. Fortunately for me, I could do those projects outside AND enjoy the spectacular day before it’s creepy counter part returns soon.

What projects you may be pondering?

If you’ve read the past few weeks I’m having fun doing some furniture flips.  You can find more on it in this post….https://sassyfitnesschick.com/2018/02/19/monday-musings-4/

I should be noted that I only seem to manage to go get said furniture on some of these sloppy, grey, foggy days.

I’m becoming a pro at it.

So my recent acquisition I scored this last week.

I had been stalking a dresser on an online site. I loved the lines of it and the cute, big mirror, not to mention the nifty vintage hardware that it had.

Oh and she wanted 100.00 for it. Of course I was fully planning on negotiating that price with her. I can bargain like a fisherwoman 😉

Anyway, I was asking her a couple questions on it one morning and she just changes the listing price to 50.00! Ok I couldn’t message fast enough I was coming to get it.

Coming to get it in the wet, cold, pouring rain.

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Dragging home my newest find

 

So I got the piece and headed home to unload it in the rain and I realized that I wasn’t “feeling it” and by that I mean when I get a piece I usually am already formulating a plan or vision for it. I’m excited over it. I am eager to get started.

It bothered me that I had gone through all of that and wasn’t feeling in love.

It was like trying to feel something in a relationship and nothing is there.

Oh no!

I decided to wait a day or so and go back and look at it again to see if I felt differently. I thought the weather was putting me in a bad mood ( haha) I made the determination if I didn’t start “feeling it” I could just flip it in it’s existing condition ( I bought it knowing it needed repair but that doesn’t bother me) and at least double my money.

Ok well…. after a day or so going by… and looking at it again… I saw it with fresh eyes. All the things I loved about it to start with. I realized what was bugging me was the horrible re done stain and varnish job someone had done to it. I also realized that with my skills it would look totally different when I got it finished.

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A 50.00 vintage find… and it does look cute and I can hardly wait to start

 

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Then there’s the cool hardware. I loovveee the lion heads 🙂 All they need is a little cleaning

 

Ok and one other object I acquired this week. A friend actually gave it to me, it had been her mom’s, and her grandfather made it. It’s like a little kitchen type thing. She knows I have girl grandbabies and thought I might be able to fix it up… I’ll let you take a look at what I started working with….

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I’ve lovingly named it the Green Goblin

 

So I do have a vision for this piece and I think it will be SO cute… but first… I have to get it to a place a can work my magic on it… so I spent the sunny afternoon outside making it look like this….

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Better now, yes? That orange and green was awful to cover up

So now I have a clean slate to work on, more or less. I can hardly wait to transform it. You’ll have to check back to see what’s up with it.

Gathering up furniture is work…

One thing I’ve learned I am grateful for… being strong. I’ve been dragging things around and sometimes I don’t have much or any help so it’s nice to handle things when I can.

One thing I’ve been focusing more on are movements that are good for upper body/core strength.  I’ll share a few moves I’ve been adding into yoga for that…

 

I’ve been focusing on moves that really target my shoulders and upper body… planks and push up’s of all kinds are also kinda handy for that 😉

I wanna make sure I keep building upper body strength for life AND fetching old furniture 😉

Doing all that work makes me hungry….

Can I share some new recipes with you I experimented with this week that everyone went crazy over? Tasty and overall pretty simple… even better.

 

 

So

 

Don’t tell anyone, but I’ve figured out if I throw something in the crock pot, I can work on my projects longer and not stop to do a lot of prep for dinner… shhhh 😉

Really though? A hot tasty meal that’s slow cooked all day? How can you go wrong?

Speaking of meals, this week we’ll look at tasty inexpensive ones that are also healthy. Of course there will be some more spotlight posts, fitness stuff and whatever other goodies may come dancing out of my head.

Tell me. What’s been new in your week? Tried any new recipes? Do you use crockpots?  Pushed yourself a little more athletically or tried a new workout?