journal

Old Stuff

I’ve always loved old stuff. I love looking at old pictures and looking at what’s in the background. It often tells a story of it’s own. I love the little cherished items handed down from generation to generation. Most of it is worth nothing from a monetary standpoint, but the intrinsic value is priceless.

Like my little glass punch bowl. It was my grandmother’s and was used every Christmas Eve for egg nog. And every Christmas Eve, we would accidentally break the ladle that went with it. It became a joke every year that we would buy her an indestructible ladle. When she passed away and we were all asked to pick something of hers to keep, I bypassed the knick knacks and the jewelry and went straight for the punch bowl with the broken ladle.

I never really knew how much I loved antiques and primitive decor until I met my friend, Heather, in Monterey. She had an incredible eye for juxtaposing the old with the new to create a feeling of warmth and comfort in every room. It was then that I started “collecting” antiques, although I really did not know what I was doing and I was just buying stuff I liked for whatever reason. An old school desk, a wooden box with faded painted lettering on the side, sheep…lots of sheep. None of it really went together, but I liked it all anyway.

Fast forward ten years, as my husband and I are house hunting for our “forever home.” We looked at so many houses before stumbling upon a really old farmhouse and barn. We could hardly contain our excitement as we walked through the not-so-level doorways and admired the wide pine floors creaking under our feet. From that moment, nothing else compared and a year later, we found ourselves proud owners of a house that was built before the Declaration of Independence was signed. When we moved in, all the seemingly random stuff I had collected over the years found a place that made total sense in this house.

It seems like there are antique shops in every little town up here in New England (much to my husband’s chagrin). There are a half dozen just within a mile of our house! Recently I stumbled across an antique MALL…an old factory mill converted into hundreds of little shops under one roof. I could get lost for DAYS in there! I was on the hunt for some special pieces to paint and found some old galvanized pails with a cool natural weathering to them. As well, I found an antique copper pail, hand riveted with a beautiful patina highlighting each rivet. I also found a Mills Brothers vinyl record in mint condition for $1 for my middlest daughter’s new record player from Urban Outfitters with bluetooth (ugh!), but I digress…

I loved giving new life to these little pieces. I was asked to put their name and initial for Mother’s day gifts. Maybe a planter, or a spot for a little girl’s “collection of stuff.” I used enamel paint, so they could be enjoyed outside and stand the test of time, yet again.

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