Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Back on Track!

I'm all done with the store and now I can refocus back onto our family life and home again. I worked 21 out of 36 days and averaged 7 hours plus 3 hour round trip driving. I'm thankful that this is only a part-time gig for me and I know I couldn't hack it if it was a full-time job. I did my "free" shopping and got lots of nice clothing, shoes, books and toys for the girls. I tallied up the prices on the tags, cuz I like to see how much I would've paid if I didn't get them for free, and the total came to over $700!! (insert whistle sound effect here) I piled up everything on the bed and sorted through them, separating by sizes for the girls and they are set for the winter. Plenty of books to read, movies to watch, games and puzzles to play. Several pairs of nice shoes, sneakers and snow boots for each kid. Sweaters, jeans, dresses, sweatshirts and winter coats for each girl. I will be sharing some of the booty with my nieces and nephews.

In the beginning of October, we went to visit and stay the night at Hubby's Parent's house. After a lunch at the Ranch House restaurant, we said our good byes to his folks and went our separate ways. Since we used to live in the area, we knew the back roads and avoided all the high traffic areas. On our way through a residential street, I spotted a bunch of stuff on the curb waiting to be picked up by the trash truck. An antique couch!! Drat! We were using the van and not the truck. We kept going and I couldn't get the couch out of my head and I told Hubby how wasteful people were, tossing out a perfectly good antique couch that probably only needed to be re-upholstered. Why couldn't people donate it or ask around to see if someone wanted it?? Maybe we could put it on the roof of the van, isn't that what the roof racks are for?? How many times have we seen an antique couch at the store and we couldn't afford it and now here is one for FREE and we have the van! We could stop at the store for bungee cords and rope. Puh-leeeeeeeze????? The problem was, we had limited amount of cash on hand and we needed to buy gas to get back home which was still a 2 hour drive away. I told Hubby to give me all his cash and I got all my cash and together we had $27. I told him if he would take me to the local Wal-mart and if I could get a bungee cord and rope for $7 or less, the $20 would be more than enough gas to get us home. Hubby knew better than to argue with a determined woman and promptly took us to Wal-mart. I ran in and scored 2 bungee cords and rope for less than $5, Thanks Wal-mart!, and we drove back to the street where we saw the couch.

Much to my satisfaction, and Hubby's relief, the couch was still there. There was a family working on a car in the driveway and I hollered through the window ( in true hillbilly fashion) if we could have the couch? The guy said "sure!" and we got out to secure our prize! Thank the gods the girls were sleeping the whole time and never knew we had a couch on the roof of the van until we got home! The whole drive home, I would look out the window and check out the shadow of the van and see the shadow of the couch that was still up there. What a nightmare that would be if the couch flew off and onto the car behind us. I have my dad to thank for teaching me how to strap and tie things down on the back of the truck or car. Hubby helps me hold the rope tight, but I'm the main 'tie-er upper'!

Here's the couch we brought home. Lucy the cat promptly claimed it, as if to say, "about time you gave me a bed worthy of my queenliness!" There is absolutely nothing wrong with it, except for the back needing to be tightened up a little. The fabric is a little dirty and I bet a steam cleaner would take care of that, but I will re-upholster it and give it a snazzier look. It screams for more than plain old beige and I already have some fabric that would do the job nicely. Can you believe those people threw it away??? I hope to have it done before the end of the year as it needs to take it's place in line behind all the other projects I have lined up: The table I need to finish sanding down and put extensions on the legs to make it higher and turn it into an island for the kitchen, the metal cabinet that needs to be sanded and repainted for my craft room... Lots of ideas and projects, so little time to do them!


Krissie said...

That's a pretty couch. I like the beige though, I wouldn't mess it up with some colourful cloth.

jenny said...

The fabric I have in mind is a beige linen with a red floral pattern,, so it will still be beige but with red in it. I think it will give the couch the dignity it deserves instead of dingy beige. And with 3 kids, plain beige wont stay plain for long!!

sufferingsummer said...

Both my husband and I freaked out when we saw the picture of the couch and agreed whole heartedly we would have done the same thing! Such a beautiful find!

Wendy said...

What a gorgeous couch! Score!

And the clothes, books, etc from the store. All I can say is wow!

You totally rock at the frugal stuff. I think I need some lessons :).

jenny said...

Summer-- Hard to believe that people would throw out such a lovely couch instead of donating it or even using craig's list or freecycle. But I am happy that we got it!! So I can't complain too much! :o)

Wendy-- I could do better on the frugal stuff.. We are not like that guy with less than $5000 a year income, but I think if we worked at it hard enough, we could do it. Have to pay off the car and the credit card debt first... We might be more like in the 18,000 range since we have mortgage payments. Maybe I'll do a post one day on how we save/make money.

Wendy said...

I would love to see your post on saving money. I know I could do much better, and since I got rid of my credit card (hubby still has his), we're doing MUCH better, but I'm still pretty bad. In fact, this morning, I've already blown $40 on tea and donuts at Tim Horton's, assorted "local" foods at the health food store, and in my typical contradictory fashion, a pound of candy at a local candy store :). I should have stayed home this morning.

jenny said...

Wendy-- Oh, I know the feeling.. those "should've stayed home days"!! Let me get my ideas in order and then there will be a money saving post in the near future.. I shop at the organic places when I can afford to, but lately, I haven't been there. My trade off is to make most things myself from scratch instead of buying food kits. And by the way, a pound of candy is a necessary thing!! ;o)