I Like your Shirt. I’ll Give You 20 Bucks for It!

Today Blackbird has asked to see some decorations. Here it is:

snow globe mania

Just kidding! That still cracks me up until I cry…in a good way.

My favorite kind of decorating involves taking ordinary items and making them look festive. For example, our ever famous train picture. I seem to post it all the time, not because I love it (although I do), but because it hangs over the fireplace in the main living area of our house and it’s just always there in the background….. watching us. Come to think of it, that kind of freaks me out.

train pictureAnyway, here’s what we did to make it Christmassy.

rain paintingNotice the small red flower in the smokestack. I was not always so subtle in my Christmas decorating. In college, I would just make little Santa hats and put them on all the people in the photos in my apartment, The Lady of Shallot, my grandma, the dancing in the rain rich people who don’t give a hoot that their poor servants are freezing in the cold (I still love that picture).

I think it is time to share how I got the train picture. It is a super-cool street vendor creation using ordinary household/garagehold items to create a train. If you look closely, you’ll see the spark plugs, flashlights, keys, washers, hinges, etc.

Dan fell in love with this when he saw it hanging on the wall of my college roommate’s sweet parents’ home in Seattle shortly after we moved up here. I fell in love with it because he liked it so much and never expresses an interest in home décor.

Several months later, the couple was moving to a much smaller home on their way to retirement and wanted to get rid of a bunch of stuff. They told us to come by their garage sale and start thinking of stuff we wanted because it would probably be out there for sale.

I took this literally. So a few weeks later we were over for dinner, they were talking about the garage sale and I said, “If you sell that train picture at the garage sale, I’m calling dibs on it.”

They sort of looked at each other and said, “We….weren’t planning on selling it….”

Awkward silence.

Me: Oh, that’s cool. I was just kidding. We just really like it.

Nice Lady: I guess we could sell it to you if you really want it. Right, hubby? We don’t need that picture anymore. We’ve had it forever.

Me: (oh my word! It’s a freaking family treasure) No seriously, it’s okay.

Nice Lady: I’ll sell it to you for $20.

Me: (writing a check) If you’re sure…….

We left our free dinner that night with a $20 painting and a huge blank spot on the host’s wall. Have you ever gone into someone’s home, seen a wall-hanging or piece of furniture you like, pointed to it and said, “I like that! How much do you want for it?” Well I have. You should try it sometime. Then every time someone compliments you on the item once it’s in your home, you can tell them the story of how you got it……or I guess you could ask them to make an offer…..

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