Friday, May 31, 2013

Barn Envy

On the way to see the Wizard of Oz, the scarecrow sings "If I only had a brain...."

For me and Doug, the lyrics would be more like "If I only had a barn...."

Oh, what we could do with a barn.  Doug could gather discarded lumber, broken furniture, old hardware, tools, and all of the other materials he sees for free on Craigslist or along the curb.  

Right now, we have a 9-foot-long piece of solid maple in our garage--left behind when a lab at the University was updated.  Doug used a similar, smaller piece to make a countertop in our beach cottage:

The bigger one would make an awesome top to a kitchen island.  Do we need it?  No.  Can Doug just toss it?  Hell no.  Someone might need it someday, and it would be a crime to get rid of it.

Last week, I saw a really cool old wooden trunk on my 5-mile morning walk with my dog.  


I could envision redoing it with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint for Alex and Ashleigh.  But I don't even have a place to work on things like that.

My friend Carrie would join us in our barn.

She has a vacation getaway in a huge mobile home neighborhood near the Delaware beaches.  One of her favorite Saturday activities is to drive through the little streets on her golf cart to see what people have dragged to the curb.  When she first bought the place, her trips yielded lamps, side tables, and chairs that she needed to furnish the house.  

Now?  Well, she doesn't really need anything any more, but she can't stop looking.

Last week, she emailed me this picture of a wicker sofa bed that she got for free from someone in her neighborhood.  It needs to be recovered, but what a wonderful find. 

In the email, she wrote, "I have to get out of this place--I need an intervention."

Not really. She just needs a barn.

A few weeks ago, she sent me a photo of five wicker pieces that she bought in her beach neighborhood.  

For $20 total.

 All she needs is another porch to furnish.

Or a barn to store the set until she finds cushions, paints the wicker, and then finds someone who is dying to buy it from her for a few hundred dollars.

Last year, Carrie got two vintage dressers from an aunt who was downsizing.  She recently got around to painting them in a beautiful pale mint green and repainting the hardware:

Maybe someday Carrie and I can join Doug as retired people, and we can all live happily ever after playing with other people's cast-offs in our barn.

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