Saturday, July 2, 2011


When the children were all grown and gone...I discovered department stores such as Nordstrom's.  I mean I knew they were around..but Mervyn's was where I was more affordable.  You see, I had not discovered garage sales back then and even if I had, I would have been too proud to go to them.  My how the times have changed. 
Not that I didn't use second hand things...heavens yes!  Grandma, Mom, friends who were tired of what they had would sell their things to was usually the case, I baby sat the cost of the item off. 
Ever did that?  I did.
You see, even back then I was drawn to women who were talented in interior design...learned about design centers..and warehouses where you had to have a "resale" card to shop there. 
My labor was free to my friends...but I watched and learned a bit...not much, but enough.

I could never afford the things they bought...and I remember the ache when we would all go shopping in those adorable little exclusive shops with all the things for your home..and I would watch as they filled up their trays with adorble things..
I usually had, if I was lucky, five or ten dollars on me and I remember pretending that I could just "could not find a thing I liked".. HO!  That was a joke! :)
You see...some people have children and some people have things.  If you are most fortunate and not married to a Military man from age 17 in the 1950's, perhaps you are one of those people.  I was not. 
Groceries, school clothes etc. came I learned to use what I could find.

But I had fun.  I was with women I enjoyed..and even if I could only look, it was fun!  But how I longed for those pretty things! babies grew by one and slowly or fastly, depending on the day, they went out on their own.
Most went early and I didn't blame them but they all came back at least once for short stays...and then they were established and gone for good.  And I had memories.

Some years ago I bought a high end department store.
It's a tray on a stand and originally it was gorgeous..but..I used it out on the patio and it got caught in a rainstorm.  My patio back then was not covered..just with slats...and the water sat...and sat..I had forgotten it was even out there. can see the results. 
At one time I painted little roses on the sides...but after the standing water ruined this tray..I put it and it's stand away..intending to do something with it one day.

Today I finally did it.  I dug it out..spray painted the legs "Apple Green" and sanded the tray down just enough to get rid of the sharp edges of peeling paint. 

I could not find the exact color of the orignial paint..but I did find this and it's fine.

Patient husband is going to add little brackets on the corners...bless his heart..



  1. You have done a great job with that trey!

    Have a great day!

  2. Hi Mona! Oh, you're the smartest and most talented ones! I love how you fixed your tray!
    Hope you have a wonderful 4th of July.
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia ;)

  3. Something for nothing sometimes translates to something for smarts, something for labor, for trade, for barter, for a quick U-turn at the nearest place, and a scamper back to a stranger's trash or give-away pile.

    Whatever you've done, however you've acquired and made and re-done and fixed up all these years---I cannot imagine that a ONE of your able-to-spend friends from those years has the remembrances and satisfaction and joy in the doing that you have.

    I just LOVE your adventures and projects!!


  4. Hi,

    You are very artistic. You have a natural talent and your projects are all beautiful.


  5. Lovely, as always, my friend. Maybe there's hope for the dresser that's been standing in my garage for the last 7 or 8 years!! One of these days....

  6. Adorable little tray table. Hope you are enjoying the extended weekend, Mona!

  7. Your butler's tray looks gorgeous, Mona! I LOVE what you've done with it!

    I well know the childrearing days when all ones resources went towards giving the children the best start in life. The nice things come later for many more of us than you'd imagine. Often younger folk with a house full of glamorous stuff have over-extended themselves and the bank owns what they have. You were wise to resist peer pressure in such a sweet way :)

  8. Oh Mona -- You loved it right back to it's beautiful self. All that "stuff" from years ago is probably gone and forgotten -- but you have the love of family and friends -- the true treasures.

  9. Thank you husband for his service in the military!

    Happy 4th. I love you new tray - it's beautiful as you!

  10. Ha ha ha! I had to laugh when I read about Nordstrom's and Mervin's. I was fortunate enough to frequent high end department stores and boutiques BEFORE I had children. Now that they're mostly out of the nest, I'm starting to rediscover them again, but they don't seem to be as interesting anymore. Estate and garage sales are so much more appealing now!

    The tray turned out beautifully!! How cute is that?!
    Patricia :o)

  11. Mona, your tray turned out gorgeous. I love all the flowers. The color is perfect. Hugs, Marty

  12. Seems we have much in common. I too was a military wife and then later also served my country. Raising a family in the military requires one to be resorceful. My children are grown and I find even now I've never found a taste for spending money for the sake of spending it. I love a good sale and can't pass up a garage or yard sale. I'm tickled to bring something back to life that others thought was junk. May you continue to find pleasure in bringing treasures back to life.
    Have a happy and safe July 4th.

  13. You are so creative! Very lucky to have a tray to work with, I only have bones!

  14. Would you like to come work at my house? I feel sure I have something that needs your attention?
    You are a very talented lady!

  15. Hi, Sister friend Mona,
    Just coming by to say Happy 4th.
    I love your tray..and I like the greens...summery.
    xo bj

  16. Great transformation! Have a happy 4th!!

    Susan and Bentley

  17. As far as I am concerned that is better than the original!

    You have a gift, Mona. kt

  18. Mona,
    I really enjoyed visiting your blog via Sheila's. When my husband and I were married in 1960 he taught school and we didn't have extra money but I loved to decorate our home. I, like you, repurposed and looked through attics and barns and found the most unusual treasures.

    After learning to be thrifty early on it is a way of life that I won't trade. Even though times are easier....

    Blessings...Betty @ Country Charm

  19. Did you know you can shorten your urls with Shortest and make dollars for every visitor to your shortened links.


Thank you SO much for sharing your thoughts! Your comments are very important to me.