One Day I Will Rule the World

World Domination, Babies and Middle Eastern Dance

August 12, 2010


I’m big into cottage style and vintage shit these days. More so since we moved into this awesome vintage house with its cottage-y sun-room and poplar-shaded backyard.

Webleigh reminds me of my first house, just, all grown up. Double the square footage and with some upgrades in its past. But the cost of a house having a history of upgrades is that this house doesn’t have any original pieces.

I didn’t remotely realize how special my first house was for having original hardwoods, original doors, original baseboards and moldings, original heating grates, original door hardware, original clawfoot tub. But then, it also had its original furnace and original lath and plaster walls. Still, I miss all that character, and we tell ourselves that since we’re committed to this house, it’s worth our time and money to restore its character wherever we can.

Consequently, I have developed a habit of impulsively buying antique heating grates and old doors, for my eventual coup d’réstoration. Last weekend I scored two old doors. Wooh!

My older two are leaving for a holiday with their father and his family this weekend.

I have an idea, I said earlier this summer, since we want to redo the flooring upstairs, we should at least do the kids rooms while they’re gone.

Then, cause I’m silly, this morphed into a desire to really redo the kids’ rooms.  It doesn’t have to be crazy – new paint and flooring will do it, turned into and we could build them bed frames and replace their light fixtures and sew some pillowcases and curtains.

Ahahahaha…yeah. I’m excited.

We’ve had this house for a year as of this weekend too. And this will be our first big project on it.

As much as I already love Webleigh, I think finally getting into a project here will really make it home.

Last weekend I was running out to get lunch before going shopping for this reno-endeavour. I stopped by a store near our house that was having a big sale. There was a beautiful red trenchcoat that I saw and desperately wanted. Over lunch I outlined to Ian its price and how reasonable it was and all the reasons why I actually really need a dressy jacket for fall. But then I went to Fabricland to get fabric for the kids’ rooms where I was hoping that the fabric I’d scoped for Ethan’s room would be on sale. It wasn’t. So I did that mental traderoo logic, “welllll, if I don’t get myself that trench-coat then it’s totally fine to spend this much.”

And after I walked out of the store, then I was all, “Hm. I didn’t actually give up anything there.”  Frugality is hard.

I had run into my mother at Fabricland, so I was giving her a ride home and I spotted some old wood chairs at a yard sale. We stopped and went and looked, found the chairs overpriced, but there was a box of junky old lamp parts out of which I quite liked a solid cast base. There were no prices on the box or the items in the box, but it was pretty junky. The base I liked was part of a jumble of parts and wire, still connected to a cord that ran from the base through a tall metal pipe to the socket, but the pipe was ugly and didn’t fit to either the base or the socket. Whatever, I only wanted the base. So I carried it over to where an older woman and two younger women were sitting on lawn chairs.

“That’s an antique,” the older woman said to me.

“Yeah? What do you want for it?”

“Ten dollars,” she asserted without hesitation. And I couldn’t tell if she was joking. So I stared at her, and finally managed, “really?”

One of her daughters had stood up and was taking the jumble of pieces from me and trying to fit it together. “I think maybe it’s missing pieces,” I said. “Are you into antiques like this?” The other daughter asked me. “I don’t know,” I said. “Recently interested I guess.”

“FINE, $5.” The older woman said.

I gave her a doubtful look. Her daughter gave me a doubtful look. “What do you think?” Her daughter asked me.

Ugh. I had no idea other than that five still seemed ridiculous. “Would you take 4?” I asked. “No,” was her immediate and cantankerous answer.

And again I just stood there with a confused look on my face trying to understand why all the fuss.

“Mom, do you want to sell this or not? If you don’t want to sell it then just take it and put it away,” her daughter said.

It seemed like a reasonable conclusion, so I began to back away.

“Four-fifty,” the woman said petulantly.

That much fuss for fifty cents? “Yeah, okay.” I chuckled, “I guess you drive a hard bargain.”

“NO,” she told me indignantly. “You’re getting a Good Deal. That’s an antique.”

Oh man. Good thing I didn’t tell her I was going to dismantle it and throw away half.

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