Table Reveal and Other Chit Chat

Greetings Cottage Friends,

So glad you're here. I hope you're finding joy in each day, regardless of what is going on around us. I know for me right now I have to practice "joyful living". When I start to feel anxious I remember the words of Paul in Philippians 4:4-7 (ESV):

    "Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."

It may be fall, but here in Northern Colorado we've already had our first snowfall; 9" a few weeks ago. Then it warmed up to the 60's, and we've had a few odd days in the 40's and 50's. I'm happy to say almost every day we have sunshine here. 

I've wanted to write blog posts more frequently, however I've been working 10 - 11 hour shifts the past two weeks, and when I get home at the end of my work day I just want to snuggle under my electric throw (oh, how I love that invention!), and watch Youtube. Yes, I am a Youtube junkie. It's how I get my news, music, Bible teaching, instructions for crafting and home projects, and so much more. 

That being said, I have worked on some home projects here and there the past month,  one which I will share with you today.

In August I showed you a thrift store table I purchased for $15.

I told you I would "change it up", and that's exactly what I did.

I had it in mind to do something special with this table, and started by giving it two coats of Waverly white chalk paint to cover the orangey wood. 

I could have done some distressing and stopped there, but I wanted to jazz up the table and give it some "shabby chic." So, I ordered a birch accent mould from Home Depot, glued it to the table front, gave it one coat of white chalk paint, and then dry brushed the entire table with Waverly chalk paint in the color steel.

This is the first time I've dry brushed anything, and I found that dry brushing is an easy and fun process. I wouldn't hesitate to do it again.

While we're looking at this corner of my living room, let me tell you a little about my other decor finds. As I've mentioned before, I have to do everything in this home on a very small budget. Even more so since I've had some unexpected large expenses recently, which I'll explain more about in a bit. So, here's a closer look, along with how I pulled it all together on a meager budget. 

First off, let me explain that the chair and pillow, and the area rug came with me from Texas. I purchased those while I was working at Pier 1, and was fortunate to be able to get them on sale and/or use my 25% employee discount.

I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw the framed print of a French street scene at the Habitat Restore for $14. The frame has a small crack in it, largely unnoticeable. I'm very fond of the print, and it fits in well with the style of my home.

To the left of the print, I hung a wire basket that I picked up at a thrift store for about $3.00, and filled it with white sunflowers purchased at Joann's at 60% off. The price was unbelievable -- like better than thrift store prices -- and so I got a bunch of faux flowers that day. (I will share more of them in upcoming posts.) A 99 cent crocheted doily covers up the flower stems and adds a romantic touch. 

The total for the table, including the cost of the paint and the decorative moulding came to $22.50. Here's a close-up of the tabletop decor. 

I shopped my home for the gray bird. The candle in the tin is from At Home. I think I paid $4 for it. The $2 white vase and 99 cent faux hydrangea came from a thrift store. The lamp, a Goodwill find, cost $2.99. A word about the lamp: I'm not crazy about the color of the shade -- the colors in the rest of the room are more muted -- and I had thought about either replacing or painting the shade, or even replacing the fabric on the shade. However, we're entering the Christmas season and I kind of like the red touch in this corner. Also, if you look closely at the framed 
print, you'll notice that there's a bit of that same shade of red in it: the awning under the street lamp. So for now, the red is going to stay. I may look for a replacement shade to use most of the year, and pull this shade out when Christmas rolls around in years to come. At any rate, I think the lamp was a great bargain. 

So, when I add up all my expenses (not counting the chair, pillow and rug, which I already owned), this vignette cost $50.47. Definitely budget friendly.

My reason for sharing all this information is to encourage any of you who don't have a money tree in your backyard and may feel like creating a beautiful home is financially impossible, don't believe it. It can be done on even a  very limited budget. Now, I will tell you that I didn't put this together all at once. It literally has taken me months of thrift store shopping to frugally decorate this area. But the hunt is the fun of it! It's so worth it to wait patiently for just the right decor at just the right price. My easy chair faces this corner, and every time I sit there and see what God has provided for me, I smile. The Lord wants to give us gifts. Sometimes we're so ungrateful when He does. I don't want to live like that! I want to appreciate not only what I have, but more importantly the One who has provided it all. That's joyful living!

I told you I would share about my unexpected expenses. Again, I'm doing this to encourage you. Life is filled with trials. In September my homeowner's insurance company informed me that I had 30 days to add steps to my back door, or they would cancel my insurance. That, of course, would make my mortgage company extremely unhappy. Now, one would think that it's pretty weird not to have steps outside of any door raised above ground level, right? But apparently mobile home owners often times don't put up steps at the back door because they never use it, except for emergencies. Picture a fire breaking out and having to jump from four feet in the middle of the night. 

Uh, no. 

I had planned to add steps, but wanted to wait awhile since I had just paid for a new sink and faucet. But, I complied, and that cost $775. The good news is that I became friends with the carpenter I hired, and he has come to my aid in emergencies since then. One example was last Friday afternoon when I came home from work and found my water heater was leaking. Badly. He came over and helped me get the water turned off, and I called my plumber. After the plumber looked at the problem and we talked about options, I decided to get a new water heater since the existing appliance was 15 years old. I know you're probably thinking "Well, that's not so bad. Water heaters aren't terribly expensive." And you'd be right if you're talking about water heaters for any kind of house besides a mobile home. But mobile homes don't have regular water heaters. They have "mobile home water heaters", and they're up to three times more expensive than regular water heaters because of the location, hookups, and the governmental codes. Anyway, I was without water for a couple of days and just got my new water heater hooked up last Sunday morning. The final price was shocking. Shocking I tell you! We're talking about thousands of dollars for the new water heater, all the fittings and hoses, and labor, etc. So for the next few months I'll be working on building up my savings again. Good thing I've been working a lot of overtime.

I'm not complaining, really, and I'm not looking for sympathy. We all have problems. Some financial, some health related, some relational. My situation could be so much worse. I think about what would have happened if my home had flooded. Fortunately, I caught this leak early. The reason I discovered it was the hissing noise I heard coming from behind the panel that separates the water heater from the rest of the closet. The hissing was the leak spraying from just below the hose connection. If my home had flooded? Yikes!  (Thank you, Lord, for protecting my home!)

I hope to share next week about the progress in my kitchen. I finished the wall texturing and painting, and did something fun with the glass front cabinet over the range, and I have some other things planned, like painting the cabinets. Of course, all this is put on hold while I get my finances back in shape. But, hey! I'm getting pretty good at waiting. That whole "patience" thing, you know?



  1. Your home is coming along so nicely and I think that you have a lovely attitude.

    1. Thank you, Briana. I really do believe that every day we have a choice on how we will receive life's trials. I wish I could say I always respond immediately with a positive attitude. I don't, unfortunately. However, God is teaching me daily, and I know I'm making progress as I lean on Him, and trust Him. Hugs.

  2. Hi Nancy. I have missed your posts. The table came out soooo nice. Love it. Sorry about your water heater. Wow that is a lot for a water heater for a mobile home. Yikes. Life sometimes! Have a great rest of the week.

  3. How wonderful that God has protected you and your sweet home! He never leaves us nor forsakes us...and it gives me comfort to know that he never sleeps. We can rest, knowing that he will continue to take care of every single thing. Love your painted table. I have some "orange" furniture, and I'm seriously thinking of trying to replicate your paint job. Looking forward to seeing your kitchen pics! Blessings to you!

  4. Good morning Nancy! It's great to see familiar faces here on blogging; where do I even begin! I love your little table. I have a few of these that I've been able to pick up at a consignment shoppe, thrift or even in a junk heap! The fun part is that I can store a few in the garage or basement so I can have them at my disposal for photography or I can have one or two in the house for decorating. They are light and are easy to move around! Stay well, please. I had to retire early this past June and I'm getting used to it. The pandemic has put a hold on our plans to travel but God-willing, we'll get through this. Peace to you dear Nancy!

  5. Yikes! I wonder WHY water heaters for mobile homes are so expensive!!!

    Your combination of beauty and thrift are inspiring, as is your joyful attitude.😊

  6. Nancy,

    Your home is lovely. I'm not always patient when I want to do a project, but I've learned to be for budget reasons. We have so many items that we got for free or we bought them used, unfinished etc. It is part of the joy of decorating for me, to find the items we want to make our home cozy and how we like it!

    Thankful with you for your overtime!

  7. Nancy, I think your red lamp shade and colorful picture are a great accent to the green chair.
    And your work on the table has turned it into a piece of art for that area. you are creative!
    So glad the hot water tank did not destroy your home. And you have unwavering faith to
    help guide you at all cost. Hope you have a wonderful but of course, different kind of
    Thanksgiving this year. Just be sure to recharge yourself after those long hours. Lynn

  8. How nice to see your post. Your chair/table area looks so nice!
    Sorry about the water heater...good thing you took care of it right away...
    seems like it is always something! :) Happy Thanksgiving.

  9. Great job on the end table redo! I loved how it turned out. Consult with your plumber to extend the life of your water heater and drain it periodically. You are doing a wonderful job by yourself. Hope winter paces itself with the snow! Thanks for sharing your makes and redos;) Stay safe and well for the upcoming holiday♥

  10. Hi,
    I like the table. Well done.
    We have been busy with home projects too. I painted some furniture and I like how it turned out.
    I do like your table better thou.. Hee Hee.. I will need to research in the paint you used.
    Happy Thanksgiving, Carla

  11. Nancy dear, you are really amazing, and not just in making your home look great, but in your positive attitude when things crop up which could really break your budget! Sorry you've had such a hit with unplanned expenses - hope all will go along smoothly from hereon out.

    I love what you've done with that table - and white sunflowers are just delightful.

    Take care - best wishes for the upcoming holidays - different of course but as long as we remain healthy and safe we will be thankful.
    Hugs - Mary

  12. I love your home and your decorating style. I've been decorating with garage sale/thrift store items most of my life, and I can honestly say, the joy and satisfaction that comes from creating a besutiful home on a small budget is huge.
    P. S. I'm so sorry to hear about your water heater, but I'm really glad you caught it in time.

  13. Dear Nancy, everything looks beautiful, your chair, I love the picture, the flowers, and what a fantastic transformation of the table, you have created a really lovely cosy area. Please keep the lamp, I think it's gorgeous, it adds a lovely pop of colour which blends with your picture and the rug. Thank goodness you found the leak early. Take care Nancy and good hunting :-)

  14. The table looks great! It is amazing what we can find at thrift stores!
    Having lived in a mobile home, I totally get all the differences there are from a 'regular' house. So many different rules. Our water heater had to have the anchors changed to comply, but really, it was less stable after the compliance changes...
    Happy Thanksgiving week to you! I hope you will be able to enjoy being with your son and his family!

  15. I am of course worried and unhappy about your current problems with your home. Sometimes fate brings us people who can help us, and then things can shift. I'm wondering if there is some sort of ordinance in what the steps are made with. My husband made four steps up to our shed with concrete blocks cemented together. That was so easy and affordable. I know you are working hard and saving and I love you for that. Your faith will keep you patient.

    Sending love and good wishes, my friend.

    Jane ❤️

  16. Happy Sunday! I love your makeover ! You are very creative and talented and your results give you great joy. It was such a blessing that God had already provided the savings needed to cover the costs of your emergencies! Take good care and have a restful Sunday.💖

  17. Oh I'm so sorry about your water heater leaking like that. I'm amazed that it was so expensive to replace! Wow... I wonder what they cost for a house. I keep thinking ours is old, but still working OK, but that they aren't that expensive! We're in a stick built house but I suppose they are still really expensive. I too am glad your entire house didn't get flooded. Wow. As for your decorating, you've done a lovely job and it's all so pretty! I love that burgundy lamp shade... and it brings out the color in the store awning in your sweet little picture. One of my favorite pictures in my entire house is one I got at our thrift store right before we moved to this house... we had painted our bedroom pink and this picture is of a cute little street with shops along it in colors of pink and white and greens.. just a perfect match for our bedroom. Has a white frame and I love it so much! Sometimes we just find the perfect thing when we least expect it! I hope there are no more home catastrophies! Hugs.. Marilyn

  18. Good gracious on the home repairs. Although I miss having my own home, I remind myself that home ownership comes with a price - beside the mortgage. Glad you were able to take care of it and it won't be long before there is some extra money in the kitty.

  19. Nancy,
    Your home is coming together so nicely. Sweet deals on your decor pieces. I have painted half a dozen sofas, and many upholstered chairs with AS chalk paint. They all came out great. The lamp shade is a very fast easy change out with chalk paint if you tire of the current color. Hate that city code non sense on the water heater. Hm Depot tried to make me purchase a type of permit before they would sell me a water heater. I refused and they sold it to me anyway. I hate over regulation. uggg. You might try to find carpenter help through local high schools wood shop classes or even local churches who often will send a handy man out to help seniors even if you are not affiliated with their denomination or church. Got to be creative in these days as we try to save a buck. Ck out Resistance chicks, Silk and Diamond and Newsmax on Youtube as well as Dutch Sheets who can be found on Youtube at " GIVE HIM 15" and he has a daily 15 min or less message that is SO encouraging as he always prays for relevant current events each day which is especially wonderful as we wait for this rigged election to be overturned this coming Jan. Miss talking to ya... call sometime.

  20. What a nice Blog you have..and thank you for the uplifting scripture nice to read and much needed. I am a big thrifter, too..and love hearing about your lucky finds. Great job on the table transformation. I love chalk paint..and treasures. Have a blessed Christmas Season. Thank you for sharing ..

  21. So nice to see this post from you. The scripture at the beginning is always inspiring to read. Your vignette is lovely and I love hearing all about prices and where you got things. Glad you caught the water heater leak when you did and that you had the money to pay for it. I just had a tooth pulled this morning, and not having insurance, I was glad I did have the money to pay for it. ~ May you have a lovely Christmas months dear Nancy ~ FlowerLady

  22. I love that corner, Nancy! The table makeover is beautiful and the whole corner looks so comfortable and inviting, perfect to snuggle with a good book. I admire the patient way you're putting your new home together, a real labor of love. Hugs, my friend.

  23. Nancy, you have a remarkable way with decor and DIY, especially on a budget, which is just my style. And I love all the details you included in your post, the story is the best part and you know I adore reading anything you write. The place looks beautiful, so warm and, as Amalia said, inviting. I'm so sorry that you had such large financial bumps in the road recently. It seems like you are managing it all well, but boy, those are long hours for anyone to work. I hope you do get a chance to put your feet up in that charming cottage this holiday season and enjoy the company of your family. Thinking of you daily, when I read my Hugs book...and wishing you well from afar. Hugs to you, xo. Kim

  24. You really transformed that table Nancy! It is amazing what you can do on a shoestring budget! Oh my, how well I know the issues that come with mobile homes, as nothing in a mobile can hardly be found in regular hardware or box stores. We had to replace a water heater when we moved into our tiny mobile home five years ago, and managed to find one at a Co-op store in a town nearby that would work. It was quite an ordeal. I am so sorry that you had to pay thousands of dollars though! Life is full of those kinds of ups and downs.. but it really is our attitude that makes the difference. I hope you aren't working too hard, take good care of yourself :) Hugs and love!

  25. Nancy, I loved reading your post and knowing that you are walking through each day with Jesus as your guide and comfort. I could not get through my life without Him.
    Your improvements are charming and so "you". As you know, I also believe in living on a budget and not wasting money when there is a way of doing it yourself. Save the money for the things you can not repair without help. Besides that there is so much satisfaction in creating your own space and making it home.
    I've been "off and on" in my blogging journey . . . with my blog and with visiting others, so I apologize for not seeing that you had posted, sooner. I've replaced a lot of my computer time with reading and studying God's Word, more each day. It is the only thing that I have found that fills my loneliness and gives me the strength to keep putting one foot in front of the other.
    Looking forward to seeing more posts from you and watching your little home develop into your cozy nest.
    God bless you,
    Connie :)


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