Adventures, Antiquing, Home, Thursday Things, VIntage

Thursday Haul

Thought I would share the stuff I got yesterday at an estate sale and the Goodwill. I found a lot of good deals!

First, we drove to West Salem to an estate sale put on by Joslynn House Estate Sales. I think it was actually at their own home, and it was supposed to have items from 5 different estates. I made the rounds and found this neat old coffee pot. I’ve been looking for one for quite awhile to display in my kitchen. This one looks like it’s been through the wringer! There is no glass percolator on top which is disappointing, but since it was only $4.00 and I’m going to display it on a high shelf, that wasn’t a dealbreaker.

Coffee Pot

Next I found a bag full of small things and 50 cents was written on it. I asked the lady if the whole bag was 50 cents, because I had seen these little porcelain Dutch children in it and wanted those.

Dutch Children

She said no, she just hadn’t gotten everything out of it yet, and asked for $4.00 for the little Dutch people. I agreed, even though I think her price was a little high. It’s hard to tell with this estate sale company. I’ve been to many of their sales and sometimes the prices are way too high, and sometimes they are quite reasonable. For instance, I got all these vintage books for $1.00 each. Very reasonable!

Books!

I plan to sell all the books except for the Peanuts books, which I will put in my collection. We might already have them at Mom and Dad’s up in my old sleeping loft, but I can’t remember which ones we had and which ones we didn’t. When we were young there was a used book store called The Book Bin in Albany, and we went there at least once a month and stocked up on books. We were voracious readers (had no TV to watch growing up)! We had a big collection of Peanuts books and various other cartoon books, and I have our large collection of Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys books here at the house. I’m still collecting those! There was a lot of furniture at this sale, dining sets, dressers, and some nice headboard/footboard combos, but I have filled up my storage room already and can’t bring anything large home with me.

Later on yesterday morning I decided to stop at the south Salem Goodwill on my way out to visit Mom and Dad. I was looking for a white bowl to keep the measuring cup for The Hubs’s special laundry detergent in, because those cups do tend to get awfully messy and I don’t want soap all over the shelf. I found a good bowl right away, and since I still had time I puttered around in the store and found a few more things. These were all very good buys!

Goodwill finds.
Snowbabies “Penguin Parade”

I can sell the Snowbaby sculpture, and I’ve been looking for a gray sweater to go with a skirt I bought last year. It’s a cotton sweater so won’t make me too warm, I hope. The store had a bunch of sets of these little garden tools, and I thought they’d be perfect for my container garden, they are wood and metal just like our grownup versions and were just $1.99! I’m not sure where I’ll put the laundry sign yet, but, you know, somewhere in the laundry room probably, ha.

I don’t plan to go to more estate sales this weekend because I have so many other things to do, but I may change my mind if there are any that sound especially good. Today I want to wash the van and scrub all the moss out from around the door handles and windows. We have no garage so it sits outside, and since we live in a wet climate moss grows on it. I ran it through the car wash the other day and it just didn’t get all that clean, especially around the bottom edges. The parts just inside the doors are also filthy. I haven’t washed it by hand in ages. And it needs a good dusting and vacuuming. I don’t know how so much dirt gets inside the car!

Sometimes I wish this was possible.
DIY, Furniture, Home, Oops, Projects, Success!

The Chairs, Phase 4

Don’t forget to read Phase 1, Phase 2, and Phase 3 first!

TLDR: Chairs are painted, seats recovered, yay!

I didn’t paint the chairs last Tuesday, but instead waited until today (Saturday) to paint them, partly to let the primer cure a little more, and partly because the weather is only going to be in the 70s today instead of the 90s and paint works a little better when it isn’t so hot. Phase 4 begins as follows:

This side is painted now.

Remember when I said I was going to primer the underside of the chairs and then do the top parts? Yeah…I didn’t. I just set the chairs right side up on their boxes and painted everything I could reach. And you know what? I missed some of the underneath parts and I’m not going to paint them at all. To be honest, I’m tired of waiting and just want to get my chairs back in the kitchen where they belong, so I don’t want any more delays (i.e. waiting for paint to dry). The paint I’m using is Sherwin Williams Pro Classic Semi-Gloss in Whitetail, which is the same color as our kitchen walls.

I painted this side of the chair and checked to see that there were no drips. Then I waited 2 hours for it to dry before turning it over and painting the upper side. While I waited for the paint to dry I recovered the chair seats with the new green Scotchgarded outdoor fabric. It should look nice with the white and I’m expecting the fabric to last a long time since it is easy to clean and meant for outdoor use.

To hold the new upholstery on the seats, I used a staple gun I hadn’t used before. Last time I recovered the seats I just used hot glue which worked fine, but this time I wanted to try the staple gun.

The Staple Gun

At first I couldn’t figure out how to close it after I loaded the staples. I took it to The Hubs who informed me that I had put the staples in upside down. It didn’t occur to me that it would be different from a regular stapler, duh! The staple gun worked okay, except it didn’t shoot the staples in all the way and I had to pound them in with a hammer. I tried many ways of holding it and changed the setting that is supposed to change how deep the staples go, but nothing fixed the issue. Also, sometimes it shot out two or three staples at once.

Not sure why this was happening.

After I cut the fabric I noticed that it had many fold marks, so I got out the iron. I ironed it with an old flour-sack towel over the fabric to see if that would work just in case the fabric wasn’t ironable, but I finally just ironed on the fabric and it worked fine. I used the linen/cotton setting with steam. I forget what the fabric is made of.

This is what the underside of the seat looked like after I stapled the fabric down. Then I suddenly realized that I had covered up the holes for the screws that hold the seats to the chairs. Oops! I thought I might have to take the fabric off and start again, but The Hubs assures me he can get the seats attached to the chairs without a redo.

Not the neatest.

But this side looks great!!

Painting the chairs.

After a few more rounds of painting/drying, I finished painting the chairs today. I haven’t attached the seats for real yet, I want to wait until the paint is completely cured. Here is one chair, in all its glory. Ta daaa!! They aren’t perfect, but they’ll do. Now to schedule a time to work on the table!

Ta daaaaa!!

Here’s a reminder of what the chairs looked like before:

DIY, Furniture, Home, Projects, VIntage

The Chairs, Phase 3

Me: <Opens paint. Rust from top of paint can falls into paint.>
“Now I have to get more paint.”
<Goes to Sherwin-Williams. Gasps at price of paint. Is happy that paint is 40% off right now. Talks to paint store people.>
“Hello. I’m glad I only paid $5.00 for each of my chairs, since I’m spending so much money on them now.”
<Expresses concern to paint store manager that my chairs still feel tacky after drying for 24 hours. Talks about putting two coats of primer on because old chair stain was bleeding through.>

Paint store manager: <Gets paint ready to shake.> “You know, you should have used oil-based primer for that. It will seal the stain.”

Me: “Well, too late.”

Paint store manager: “And you only need one thin coat of primer. Most people think that you need to completely cover with the primer, but it is just so the paint will adhere better. Just a thin coat will do.”

Me: <Is sad.> “Good to know, thanks.”

Paint store manager: “It’s just that the primer might peel off since you put on a thick coat.”

Me: <Has downcast face.> Okay. Well, thanks, guys. <Goes home. Tells Hubs that chairs still feel tacky.>

The Hubs: “Oh, well, you should probably wait to paint them. I’d wait at least a week.”

Me: <Schedules time to paint chairs next Tuesday, in case they’re ready by then.>

Ready to paint
Change, DIY, Furniture, Home, Projects

The Chairs, Phase 2

After the wood filler on the chairs had dried, I sanded those areas smooth and scuffed up the chairs with my sandpaper to help the primer adhere better and to smooth out some damaged edges. I concentrated most on the tops of the chairs and parts that are more noticeable, and just smoothed out the dings on the bottom rungs. (Oops, some of the wood filler came out of the largest space I filled where the veneer was missing, so I filled it again, let dry, and sanded more.) Then I wiped the chairs down with a wet rag to remove the sanding dust.

As soon as it got light I went out to the patio and got the primer. I picked the two hottest days of the week to work on these, so I wanted to get the primer done while it was still cool outside! It is predicted to be in the 90s today as it was yesterday, and when I went out in the afternoon yesterday it was just stifling.

I decided to put the chairs on the patio table to paint the lower parts, with a sheet underneath and the chairs set up on boxes so the sheet won’t get in the paint. With the primer I’ll paint the top parts of the chairs first and then flip them and paint the underneath parts because I’ll be sanding the primer when it’s dry anyway. When painting, I’ll do underneath first in case there are any drips or boo-boos.

I finished the first coat of primer at 7:30 a.m. and decided to wait two hours to sand out any brush strokes and put the next coat of primer on. The chairs already look better with just the primer on them. I was concerned that the details of the chairs would sort of fade out once they were such a light color, but I see the details actually standing out now that they are white instead of dark wood.

Chair details

As I started to put the second coat of primer on, I noticed a few areas of the old wood stain bleeding through the primer. I put a second coat on those areas and let them dry to see if the second coat would cover it, and it didn’t. So, I went to Lowe’s and bought some Kilz 3 Premium which is supposed to be good for painting over wood. I put a coat of Kilz 3 primer on both chairs and they are drying now.

A bit blurry, but you can see the bleed-through.
Kilz 3 primer

Tune in tomorrow to see if the Kilz primer does cover the bleed-throughs, and how the first coat of paint turns out!

DIY, Furniture, Home, Kitchen, Projects

Chair Project, Finally!

I used to see these chairs in the upstairs room at church when I would run the projection. When our church bought the building, it was bought with everything included down to the spatulas in the kitchen, and I think the upstairs room had just been used as storage. At the time I was using my grandparents’ 1950s colonial maple dining table and chairs, and those chairs were not very comfortable. I longed for sturdy kitchen chairs with flat seats, and I kept seeing these and thinking they would be perfect.

One day the assistant pastor let me know he needed to go through the stuff in the upstairs room and get rid of some things, and I asked him if I could buy the chairs. He said, “Five bucks each?” and I said, “Sold!” and so they came home with me. I’m pretty sure they still had the original fabric (probably from the 1920s or ’30s) on the seats, it was old and dirty and worn through around the edges. I’m not sure why, but I put the chairs in my kitchen and didn’t recover the seats for a couple of years, but finally I bought some cheap quilted muslin to cover them just to make them look better.

A little later on we bought this table for $20 to go with the chairs. Our kitchen doesn’t have a large space for dining and two chairs and a round table are just right.

Table and Cat

The plan for the table is to paint the bottom/legs the same color as the chairs, and strip and stain the top a dark walnut and then put some heavy-duty spar varnish on it to protect it from glass rings and spills. I think it is an antique oak table underneath the heavy brown paint, but I don’t want to go with the usual “orange” oak color. We have enough of that in the kitchen floors and countertop edging, as you can see. Hopefully that will change someday.

The chairs are too dinged up to refinish, so I plan to paint them a nice, clean off-white. The fabric store was having a good online sale and I was able to get a great deal on some stain-resistant outdoor fabric that goes with my kitchen’s green theme. It’s a little bright, but it should look good for years to come. The lighter-colored chairs and table legs will brighten up that side of the kitchen considerably.

I started this morning by removing the seats from the chairs and putting the screws in Ziploc bags. I numbered the chairs, the seats, and the bags of screws so I would know which seat and screws went to which chair. Sometimes it does matter which one goes to which!

You can see that the chair above has some veneer missing on the back. There are some other chunks missing around the edges here and there, so I got out the wood filler and filled the areas as best I could. I will go out and sand the chairs as soon as the wood filler has dried completely.

You can use a putty knife to apply wood filler.
But sometimes it just works better to use your fingers.

Stay tuned for the next episode in the chair saga!

1940s, Adventures, Antiquing, Books, Cool Stuff, Home, Home and Garden, VIntage

Friday Adventure

Yesterday Marnie and I went on an adventure in the countryside around Molalla and Silverton, Oregon, and saw and bought some fun stuff. We started at the Hometown Barnhouse Vintage Market, and then went on to some estate sales and antique stores. At the vintage market I got an old Nancy Drew book and an old Hardy Boys book to add to our collection and an old strainer with a green handle to hang on my kitchen wall. I have a collection of vintage kitchen utensils with green handles, because my kitchen has a green theme. Marnie was able to find some nice plant pots for her growing succulent collection.

The countryside.
Friday’s haul

At a barn sale, I got the tray above and a beautiful mirror with beveled edges in a dark wood frame. It belonged to a dresser at one time so there is nothing on the back to hang it with, but I’m hoping the Hubs will be able to come up with a solution so I can hang it in my office. This is the barn that had the sale, the man said it was built in 1908. It still seemed very solid.

Isn’t this the neatest?

He had a wonderful dresser for just $40, but I have nowhere to keep one.

I was talking to the man at the barn about the barn we used to play in when I was a girl and told him about the owls, and he showed us his barn owl. Marnie got this awesome photo of it.

Marnie gets the best photos.

We went to what used to be an antique mall in Molalla, but is now just a very small part of the building and the porch with a couple of small rooms inside. We were disappointed that they had downsized so much because we had enjoyed shopping there after our hikes when we were out that way.

At an estate sale in Silverton I found a few modern books that I’ve been interested in, so that was nice since they were only $1 and $2 apiece. I was just talking to Lara and Marnie about how I never seem to read anymore, so I bought more books…now there are at least 7 or 8 on my “To Read” list. I suppose I had better get started!

Part of the fun of going to estate sales is seeing the houses, and this one was no different. It was in a new neighborhood on a hill and looked like a small house from the front, but when you went inside it was a good size with a view of a good chunk of Silverton out the living room window.

We did follow some signs to a “hoarder’s sale” way out in the country, but the driveway was narrow and long and when we got up to the house there was nowhere to park, so we came back down and didn’t bother with that one.

We came into Silverton and went to a thrift store and then had strawberry milkshakes from the bakery and lunch we got at the food cart pod. Marnie had spring rolls and I got my lunch from the Costa Rican cart, enyucado and fried plantains. I had never had enyucado before and it was delicious. It is a fried croquette made of cassava, and was filled with ground beef and spices. I forgot to take a photo of it before, but here is a photo of it after I eated it. I brought most of the plantain fries home and The Girl expressed great interest in them so I may not get to eat them after all, ha.

The antique stores in Silverton didn’t have much that interested us, Marnie got a decoration for her succulent garden and I got an “Oregon” sticker to replace my “Onward” bear sticker which is peeling off the van window. I saw a sign like this at one of the stores and it was $22. I checked online and found it for $12.98. I was hoping to get a more artistic one, but after thinking about my stash of sign-making materials and looking at the price of stencils, I decided this one was fine. The Hubs has a nifty plasma table that will cut signs and things, but it isn’t working so he couldn’t make a sign for me. I will hang this on the fence in the front yard and hope no one runs off with it!

Home, Home and Garden

My Little Garden – Did it Survive?

My poor little garden…it went all wonky while we were on our backpacking trip. The succulent with the pink flowers croaked completely, and two of my lavenders lost half of their plants.

Croaked 😦
Pink lavender plant
French lavender plant

I think the Hubs may have overwatered them while we were gone. It got very hot and he probably just thought he should douse all the plants every day, but the lavender and succulents don’t need that much water. I cut out all the dead stems from the lavender plants – the ones that are left on the French lavender actually have some new growth on them so I left them to see what would happen. And actually, last year the lavender plants did the same thing. I will definitely not water them much in the coming weeks so they can dry out and sort of get back to normal.

The rosemary and rosebush, however, both look very healthy and happy. I will be buying a new succulent plant this week for the top of the strawberry pot.

In the meantime, though, I will share with you this wonderful concrete statue I got at the estate sale last week!

My little bear – please ignore the dandelion farm.
Here is how he looks on the patio.

Isn’t he adorable? He weighs about 300 pounds, ha. The Hubs says he will never move it again! I think Little Bear adds a lot to our patio area.

I’ll update again when I get the new succulent plant for the strawberry pot. The other succulents and the thyme plants are doing great in the pot, so I hope a new succulent will grow happily there.

Backpacking, hiking, Home, Home Care, PCT

While I’m Away

When I’m planning to be away from home for awhile, I have to consider how the things I usually do will get done. Since I work at home and take care of many of the household chores, some scheduling and instructions are in order.

There is almost always someone home at our house at any given time, even when I’m not there, so it isn’t hard to get someone else to take care of my usual responsibilities. We don’t make a schedule of the kitchen chores, the Hubs and the Girl usually share those as they come up. They also share cat care responsibilities and always make a feeding schedule for Philip so he doesn’t miss a meal (he eats three meals a day of canned cat food with crunchers on the side for snacking) and so his water bowl is always full. One or the other of them will feed him at the appropriate time. The Hubs already spends time giving Philip attention and cleans the litter box, so those don’t need to be on the schedule.

Who will feed me?

The dusting, vacuuming, and cleaning the bathroom and floors will probably not realistically get done while I’m gone. I will give everything a good scrubbing before I go. The Hubs usually makes his own food and the Girl usually orders from DoorDash, so nutrition is covered. Then really the only other things the Hubs will have to do that he doesn’t ordinarily do is to pay the bills and buy groceries and other necessities, like cat food and treats. I have left him written instructions for how to pay the bills (it’s a process!) and he knows how to shop for groceries. I usually order the groceries online and pick them up at the store because then I don’t have to lift things like cases of water and 25-lb boxes of kitty litter, but he is capable of lifting heavy items and likes to pick out his own groceries. He doesn’t trust the “Drive Up and Go” employees to pick out the things he wants correctly, although they usually do a pretty good job for me and I find it a blessing not to have to spend the time going through the store. The feed store keeps a record of what I buy for cat supplies, so if the Hubs forgets they can help him out with that.

Oh, I guess the Hubs will have to do laundry as well. He and the Girl already each do their own laundry, and I have left him written instructions tacked up on the freezer that tell how to wash the towels and sheets, so he should be good there.

Laundry Instructions

As far as plant care, I’m asking the Girl to water my plants when she is taking care of her chocolate mint plants on the patio.

I guess that covers just about everything. Onward to the PCT!

Just keep walking!

~Ninja

Cool Stuff, DIY, History, Home, Home and Garden, Home Care

Light Switch Time Capsule

When we were remodeling our bathroom and took down the sheetrock, we found two different families’ names inside the wall, written on the back of the sheetrock of the opposite room. One was from the 1950s, and one from the 1970s where it looked like the kids had written the names and ages of the parents and kids. The oldest boy (16) had written his name away from the others, ha. We really enjoyed seeing the names and added our own with the message (referring to the bathroom remodel) “We did the best we could!”

So here’s an even better idea — someone has set up a light switch cover template with a tiny font you can use to write a message for the future occupants of your house to find after you leave! You can find it here in this article from Makezine.com. Wouldn’t it be even more fun to leave a note behind EVERY light switch cover? 😁😁

Photo from “Light Switch Time Capsule” on Makezine
Home, Home Care, Kitchen

It Has To Be Done

Image from herway.net

Greetings, young adults! Is washing dishes your favorite chore? Of course not! But is it important for your health, the maintenance of your kitchenware, and the tidiness of your home? I’m pretty sure you’d say it is. These instructions will show you what you need and how to quickly wash your dishes and kitchenware to keep it all clean and germ-free. (That is, if you don’t have an automatic dishwasher. If you have a dishwasher, you should use it. It works much better than washing dishes by hand.)

First, gather your supplies. Start with a sturdy dish brush with a scraper on it. Buy some rubber gloves if you have sensitive skin. Then you will need a dish drainer, a clean dishcloth, clean dish towels, some dish soap (like Dawn), and bleach. If you have a one-basin sink you will want a clean dishpan. Since you will put bleach in the water you use to wash your dishes, you will also want an apron or old sweater to wear in case you splash. Have two scrubby sponges on hand, one blue and one pink (or at least two different colors of some sort), so you can tell which one is for dishes and which one is for the sink. Have some disinfecting cleanser (like Soft Scrub with bleach) to scrub your sink, and keep some paper towels and disinfecting spray cleaner around to get your counters all spiffied up after you’re done with the dishes. Your broom and dustpan will also come in handy.

Before washing the dishes, use your dish brush to scrape bits of food off the dishes/pots/et cetera and into the garbage disposal or trash can.  If you scrape stuff into the garbage disposal, run the disposal for a minute with hot water to grind everything up and wash it down. Do not put eggshells or things that would be hard to grind up in the garbage disposal. (Eggshells will clog your drains. Trust me, they will.) Rinse the dishes well before stacking them on the counter to get ready to wash. Never stack dishes with chunks of food on them. You do not want bits of food and other debris in your wash water when you are washing your dishes!

Prepare your sink using your blue scrubby sponge and disinfecting cleanser. You wouldn’t take a bath in a dirty bathtub, because that would be gross. So would washing your dishes in a dirty sink! Sprinkle or squirt a generous amount of cleanser in the sink and give it a good scouring all around (both basins, if you have two). Don’t forget the sides and corners. Rinse out your sink, then rinse off and squeeze out your sponge and put it away where it can dry quickly.

Survey your rinsed dirty dishes and kitchenware. Find the dirtiest items – probably a pot, or a pan that used to be full of lasagna, or anything that might have hard-to-remove gunk left on it after scraping with your brush. Get out your pink scrubby sponge and use it to scrub as many food scraps off your dirtiest dishes as possible. Anything especially icky (like a cutting board or knife that had raw meat on it) should be scrubbed with your dish brush and a little bit of dish soap, and then rinsed before putting it in the wash water. If you need to scrub out a stainless-steel pot, a cleanser called Cameo works well. Rinse your scrubbed dishes and set them aside. Then rinse your pink sponge out and put it away near the blue sponge.

Now put some dish soap in your sink basin or dishpan and fill it with water as hot as you can stand. Add a dollop of bleach to the clean water to help sanitize your dishes. Whirl the water around until there are plenty of suds. Get out your dishcloth and put it in the soapy water. Note that you are using a clean dishcloth, not one that has been sitting around on your sink collecting germs and who-knows-what.  Neither are you using a dirty old sponge, or the dish brush. The dish brush is for scraping only.  We’re using a sponge for scrubbing, and a clean, germ-free cloth for washing.

Survey your dirty dishes once again. Pick out the least-dirty dishes this time, probably the glasses. Wash these in your suds with your dishcloth. Run hot water from the faucet into your other sink basin (or next to your dishpan) to rinse, and put the glasses in the dish drainer. Next, do the plates and bowls. Remember to wash all sides of each dish, because the backs get dirty too. Wash and rinse your plates and bowls and put them in the dish drainer.

If you are washing sharp knives, place them in the sink or dishpan with the blades all facing away from you. This way you know where the handles are so you can pick them up safely out of the suds to wash them. When washing a knife, ball the dishcloth up for safety so you have some more cloth between your hand and the knife blade while you are washing it. After you have washed the knives, put them in the dish drainer, points down.

 Next, tackle the silverware. Pay special attention to each piece of silverware so you won’t find something yucky between the tines when you take a fork out of the drawer later. Wash, rinse, and place the silverware in the dish drainer. Finally, you’re going to come to the dirty dishes you scrubbed earlier. Scrub them even more thoroughly with your dishcloth until they are shiny. You’ve probably run out of room in the dish drainer by now, so place your washed and rinsed pot and lasagna dish on a dishtowel on your counter.

It’s now time to dry the dishes. Get your dish towel and start with the glasses and cups. If any cups or bowls nest together, make sure they are completely dry before nesting or germs might grow in the dampness between them. Then dry the plates and other dishes, silverware, knives, and pots and pans. Put everything away in its place in your kitchen.

Finish your dishwashing task by drying and putting away the dish drainer (unless you are a person who keeps it on the counter beside the sink all the time, that’s okay too), and hanging up your dish towel(s). Wring out your dishcloth and hang it somewhere in the laundry area to dry before putting it into the hamper. Wipe all your kitchen counters and your stovetop with your disinfecting spray and paper towels. Mop up all the water from the back of the sink, wipe off the backsplash, and wipe down the faucet. Wipe up any spills from the floor with a paper towel or rag. After your counters are clean and your floor is wiped, get your broom and dustpan and sweep the whole kitchen floor.  Don’t forget the dining area floor if you have one.

That is the end. This simple task should preferably be done every day, or at least whenever there is a jumble of dishes on your counter.

Wasn’t that easier than you thought it would be? Now your parents are proud of you, your roommates are happy with you, and you can be proud and happy too, knowing everything in your kitchen is clean, tidy, and well-maintained!