December 6, 2017:

Hola!

It's COLD here. Cold and windy. But the Sun has been out for the past 2 days so it's bright, and that helps me to bear the cold and the short days. Only 15 more days to Winter Solstice, and then each day, a few more minutes of daylight will magically begin to be added, and even though the cold and snow will continue, the "worst" will be over because I know we are over the hump and headed toward the Spring Equinox.

Meanwhile, I am busy decorating the tree. I dug out an old collage of photos from the former Maison Newton (above). Gosh, that was a beautiful fireplace. My current gel fuel fireplace is great, but no match for that large and lush gas fireplace in my former home. In my case, downsizing meant not only much less square footage and a single story (which IS nice), but no fireplace until I purchased my gel fuel fireplace. I love it, but there was only one wall I could put it on, and this current living room is much smaller than my former living room, so I sized the fireplace accordingly. (It was also much less expensive and did not need to be installed by professionals).

Yesterday I womaned up and muscled, huffed, puffed, cussed some, breathed heavily and heaved mightily to get my Christmas tree up the basement stairs and dragged into the living room, and then into position in front of the picture window overlooking the front of the house. Whew! Quite the work-out. But I wasn't ready this year to switch to a "single woman of a certain age" (4 foot tall) tree. Maybe next year...NAH!

Jan

Friday, July 29, 2016

Shezebo: A Dose of Frugality (Reimagining an Old TV Stand Turned Coffee Table)

Hola darlings!

I am so excited.  Tomorrow my Shezebo will be put together and installed by my contractor and his crew.  In preparation, today I cleared off the patio to make room for my Shezebo and work space.  Looks rather forlorn.

Before.
Pending.  Planters, table, birdbath moved out of the
construction zone.
Before.
Pending.  So sad - birds have been flying by looking for the
birdbath even as I type this; they have not yet discovered it in its new location!
One of the items I know I want in my Shezebo is a table that can serve both as a coffee/cocktail table and a side table.  That means something portable.  I had an idea in mind -- I wanted to have something on casters but not too tall, something with a shelf underneath the tabletop, and something in yellow.  I started by hunting for yellow coffee tables and saved photos of two possibilities:

Chatham House "Helena" Coffee Table at Bed, Bath and Beyond (no casters)
$97.49 with free shipping on orders over $29
Sauder Woodworking Soft Modern TV Multi-Cart 115.42 (on casters)
$115.43 and free shipping
I was looking for tables around $100 or, preferably, less.  I'm sure there are other options out there online, possibly something I'd need to spray paint and/or add casters on.  But, considering the amount spent for my Shezebo, the assemble and install, and all of the goodies that I probably did not need but went out and bought anyway, I decided to go the frugal way and shop what I already had in the house -- just begging for some casters and a paint job:


This painted in the early 1990s former TV stand (minus casters removed when said item ceased being used as a TV stand and was converted to a coffee table in the family room at the former Maison Newton), complete with burgundy stenciling on the top (thankfully, not shown in this photo).  What can I say?  Jewel tones were "in" when I first decorated my former family room, and the converted TV stand never changed its, er, spots when I ditched the jewel tones in favor of something equally gaudy but in lighter "updated" tones of copper, taupe, and beige.  LOL!  I know, I know, but it wasn't as hideous as it sounds :)

So, my poor lonesome coffee table that used to keep me company every day in the former family room as I sat at my desk looking out over my backyard gardens, was banished to the unused wreck of a rec room in my current retirement abode because there was no place for it upstairs. 

But fear not, little table, you have served me well since I first purchased you in 1971 except that one of your casters fell off and disappeared somewhere along the line of many moves from apartment to apartment, while in college, while in law school, to first home, to storage, to second home, to third home.  You have proved sturdy and true, and I am not one to ditch my friends just because they're "old fashioned."  Hell, so am I!

I have a plan, TA DA!


New casters - little ones with stops on them!  And a lovely yellow spray paint that was on sale for $2.99 a can at Menards!  Total cost under $9 including sales tax.  Now all I have to do is put down some plastic and/or newspaper, clean up the table, prime it (I have spray primer on hand), and voila, I will have a beautiful new rolling coffee table.  

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