Finding and creating adventures in everyday life.


Secondhand Sunday – Jackpot!

There is nothing like walking into a thrift store & seeing a sign that says “50% Off Everything in the Store”. Nothing like it. Then, when you actually find some treasures, well, it’s what thrifting is all about.

The three treasures that I am sharing today come from just such an experience I had yesterday. The St Vincent de Paul Thrift Store in town has moved location several times & I hadn’t yet visited its latest abode. I finally did yesterday & they were having 50% off everything.

My first find was an amazing vintage 60s hat box, I couldn’t believe that it hadn’t been claimed – the woman at the checkout said it had been around for a couple of weeks! It’s going to be great storage for some of my vintage hats. They had it priced at $4.99 – I got it for half that! The pattern on the outside is so fun & the lining is lovely too.

At the jewelry counter, I found a sweet little vintage handbag. The opening mechanism is cool – can’t really show that in a photo, and the beaded fabric is nice. It was priced at $5.99, so half of that…

My final find was at the exit. It was hanging on the wall. I probably wouldn’t have looked at it if it wasn’t half off, but I’m so glad I had a closer look. It’s a vintage mirror. I love it! Haven’t decided what I’m going to do with it yet, but there might be some spray paint involved & it might end up in our powder room. It was half off $12.99.

I also visited a few other thrift stores in town & was tempted by a couple of things, but I’m learning to exercise restraint. Just because something is cool or fun or rare, doesn’t mean I have to have it. I even turned my back on several vintage owls Because they didn’t really appeal to me. I want to learn to only add things that are meaningful to my collections.

Yesterday was a fabulous thrifting day!

Leave a comment

Secondhand Sunday – November 13, 2011

Oh how I love to thrift. I love finding treasures amidst heaps of junk (which might just be someone else’s treasure!). I wonder about the stories behind what I find. Who owned it before me? Why did they get rid of it? What can I do with it?

Here’s a few recent finds…

I found these lovely handbags at one of my favourite local thrift stores, The Opportunity Foundation Thrift Store. I find that they have the best sales in town – regular percent off days & of course, their wonderful $4 per bag clothing sales once a month. The two smaller bags were $3 each & the large bag was $2! What?! Yes, please. I love the cool details on vintage handbags.

At the same store, not too long ago, they were having a random linens sale for $2 per bag. Bins & bins of sheets, blankets & fabric. Spread out over several bins I pieced together this amazing 80s rainbow sheet set. I love vintage sheets, and mostly just use the fabric for projects because it’s not easy to find complete sets. This set is for a double bed. We only have one double bed in our house & it’s in the Guest Room/Sewing Room/Library/Dress Up Room. Whoever comes for a visit next gets to enjoy these great sheets! When I was growing up, I really wanted to have rainbow sheets – I was a bit obsessed with rainbows. Now I have rainbow sheets!

I also love vintage suitcases. I love the really old wooden ones, the flowery 60s ones, the 70s vinyl ones & the hardcase 80s ones. I have quite a few, but they are a bit bulky & take up space. I also want to be able to see & enjoy them. I saw this idea on Pinterest to use stacking suitcases for storage. They also live in our Guest Room/Sewing Room/Library/Dress Up Room and I use them to store fabric for future projects. I think they look so cool.

Have you found any thrifted treasures lately?

1 Comment

Secondhand Sunday – Merry Mushrooms

A couple of weeks ago, I got to spend the day with my Mom. It was a lovely birthday present. We went to some thrift & vintage stores – one of my favourite things to do. We also had a yummy lunch. We both found some gems, but my favourite find was a set of Merry Mushroom dishes from Sears Roebuck & Co from 1977 & 1978. It’s actually two sets & neither is complete, but there are enough of both to make a set. It was only $8! So much fun.

I love the 70s feel & design on these dishes. Truly a great find for me. I’m excited to have a fun Fall Tea Party using these dishes.



It’s one of my greatest desires that my children are inspired to create. I am a firm believer that everyone is creative – it may not be artistically, but everyone is a creative being. So I love it when my boys make stuff – whether it’s a tower made out of Legos, a chalk drawing, a Crayon Physics puzzle, a culinary “creation” or a drawing. I want to honour their creativity & display it. This is an age-old conundrum – we parents want to display the art, but there’s a lot of it! I take a lot of photos of their creations, but it’s fun to actually keep some of the art work & put it up in the house.

It’s such a fun time with Jude because all of the sudden he’s doing all these drawings that actually look like what he’s trying to draw. He’s having a blast with it too. His imagination is blossoming.

I came across this idea on Pinterest, loved it & decided to recreate it with a few changes. I also saw this idea & wanted to give it a go – I ended up just writing on canvas with puffy paint & really liked how it looked.




I have another idea for displaying paper artwork that is non-standard size that I plan to put in place this weekend. I’ll post pictures when it’s up & ready to go.


30 Days of Creativity – Day 18

We’ve had a very productive day in our house today. Despite the rain, we got our soaker hoses in the ground for the garden – ok, so Colin & Jude did this. I planted all the seeds in the raised beds & transplanted the tomato plant outdoors. This is the latest we’ve ever got the garden going, but I planted shortly before this last year with starts & lost everything to a frost & had to start over. So I decided to wait until now & plant straight into the ground. We’ll see!


My other creative project that Colin helped me with today is one of my most favourite things I’ve ever made. I saw an item through Pinterest on Etsy & I loved the concept behind it. It was a keychain made from pennies from the year you, your spouse & your children were born, but I wanted something more accessory-like. So I scoured the house for pennies, emptied the boy’s piggy banks & found the coins I was looking for. Then I got to thinking that it would be fun to get even more personal & relevant. Colin was born in New Zealand so I am hoping some of our friends or family can find me a penny from Colin’s birth year. Then because we were married in the UK, I found a two pence piece (because there’s two of us!) from the year we were married.

All that to say that I now have a necklace with a penny each from all our birth years & the year we were married & they’re in chronological order from the top down. Drilling the holes in the coins wasn’t easy, but Colin helped & it worked! I’ll cherish this item forever!

For more information about the 30 Days of Creativity, click here.


I Still Have Everything I Need

I began a journey at the beginning of May that involves not buying anything for three months – August 3rd, to be exact. I am allowed to buy toiletries, medicine, groceries & needful things, but nothing else.

Let me tell you, it has been a challenge. I often use shopping as therapy – true retail therapy. It’s such a temporary & short-lived fix, but that doesn’t stop it from feeling good for a short time. It’s been good for me. I have made it through a month & 10 days & have done well.

I don’t go to stores besides the supermarket much these days. When I do, it’s in & out – no browsing. It’s hard for me to pass up those clearance items! I immediately delete all emails with specials & coupons. I toss catalogues. I have found it’s better just not to look!

I even ventured into Ikea & didn’t buy anything! That was crazy. We don’t live near an Ikea so any opportunity to visit is a big deal for me. We went to buy Zane’s big boy bed – a pre-arranged purchase. I just tried not to look at anything while we were there! Colin did buy me a couple of ice-cube trays that I had been wanting to use with crafts for the kids. I didn’t even ask!

Zane’s birthday is coming up this month as well & I have some leniency in being able to buy a couple of things for him & his party. I feel like I’m cheating if I get anything though!

What an amazing time this has been for me. I am looking around at what I already have & using it more. I’ve wanted to buy stuff for craft projects, but instead have dug into my supplies & made do with what I have. I’ve seen lots of pretty summer dresses & wanted to buy a new one, but have re-discovered some lovely things that I already had!

Pray for me as I complete these next couple of months. It is indeed a challenge!


I Have Everything I Need

I saw this photo on Pinterest. I saw it about a week ago & I just haven’t been able to get it out of my head. It’s true. I really do have everything I need. And yet, I seem to have this compulsion to get more & more. I use shopping as therapy – I get that little rush when I buy something, but it doesn’t last long. That’s not to say that I spend a lot – I’m definitely a bargain shopper, but that sometimes means that I just buy things because they’re cheap & get another little self-satisfied rush because I got a good deal & walk away with something that I don’t really need or even want.

Now I am not against having things or buying things. I love what William Morris said, “Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.” It’s good & even right to, as you are able, surround yourself with beauty & inspiration.

I could give you lots of reasons why I shop & buy – not having a lot of material things when I was growing up, moving around a lot so “things” equate home & security. But the fact is, I buy too much stuff & then my house feels full & cluttered & I feel bad. It’s that way because of my own choices.

I want to change how I look at things, how I comfort myself, how I bring things into my home. I am not giving up “stuff”, but I want to think about things more whether it’s clothes, toys, entertainments or home decor. I want to have a plan & really bring useful & beautiful things into my home. I want to begin with contentment with what I have. I want to move away from envy. I want to find joy in simple things.

All that to say that I am embarking on another challenge. I originally thought that I would do this challenge for a month, but eventually realised that wasn’t long enough. So for the next three months, I’m not going to buy anything. Now, before you freak out, this doesn’t include groceries & I will buy medicine if need be, but I’m not going to buy “stuff”. In store or online – gasp! Whatever will I do with myself? I am hoping that this will spur my creativity & help me to deal with the things that I already have in a wise way.

Please don’t get me wrong, I am not against shopping, even recreational shopping, but for me, I need to change things & I have recognised that I have a problem & I want to change. Plus, think of all the money I’m going to save in three months!

I’m excited, I’m fearful. I won’t purchase anything until the beginning of August. August 3rd to be exact. Pray for me! I’ll check in from time to time to let you know how it’s going. Colin is going to be so happy!

Leave a comment

Styling My Home One Space at a Time: Kitchen Counter

The kitchen counter closest to the garage door, where we all come in the house is a notorious “drop zone”. It’s a catch-all for all the bits & pieces, the flotsam of family life. Things that need to be repaired, things that need to be taken up stairs or out to the garage, all the little things. For ages, my thought was to clean it up & make it neat & tidy all the time, not allowing anything to be left on the counter. I’ve realised that this is impractical & unreasonable. There will always be bits & pieces & they will always need somewhere to rest on their way to their home. With that in mind, I redid the counter & surrounding area, allowing for the space to be used as it would no doubt be used anyway.

I found a two-tiered pull out bin on clearance at Target as my catch-all. I had a cubby bin from Ikea in the garage that wasn’t being utilised. I made tags for each drawer – things like pens, first aid, rubber bands, pins, make up, etc. I put another basket that had been sitting in the garage on top of the microwave that holds my running gear – watch, gloves, Yak Trax.

I also hung a shoe organiser on the back of the hall closet to hold other things that we might need on the way out the door – gloves, sunglasses, etc.

I’ve had it set up for about a week & so far it’s working great.

Here’s what it looked like before:

Counter - Before

Junk Drawer - Before

And here are the Afters:

Counter - After

Junk Drawer - After

Microwave Stand

Door Hanger

Overall, I’m very satisfied. There will probably be some tweeking required, but so far it’s a great system!

Leave a comment

Here I Go…

I’m in a bit of a rut. I love my life. It’s different then I ever thought it would be, but it’s good. I am married to my best friend – he’s fun, funny, super smart & creative. I have two amazing boys who keep me on my toes. I am blessed to be able to stay home with my boys & I don’t want to take that for granted.

I have lots of ideas for things to do with the boys, some of them happen, some don’t.  I have lots of ideas for things that I want to do personally & creatively, some of them happen, a lot of them don’t. I respond well to challenges & competition. So I am setting out on an adventure to do more, be more & have a lot of fun. Hopefully along the way I will grow & learn.

My challenges will cover fashion, style, home-making, cooking, crafting, creating and physicality as well as some deeper issues of the spirit and soul.

Join me if you will & let me know if you want to join in on a challenge.