Chronicles a family's adventures in rehabing and restoring old furniture and vintage finds for their new home following a move to the South.

A New Year, A New Table and A New Camera??? January 3, 2012

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!!  Now What???? I hope everyone had a great New Year’s Celebration.  I usually have a number of New Year’s resolutions… but this year was the first year that one actually didn’t even cross my mind.  Last year included a move, a new state, a new house, 2 new jobs (one for me and one for my husband),  4 new schools, lots and lots of new friends, a new au pair (Miss L).  Let’s see… did I forget anything???  For 2012 we are praying for the blessings of consistency, lack of change, pacing and peace.

Well, driving home from work today I received a request (from Miss Ceil) for Miss Carly’s bed reveal.  That was the bed that my picky daughter asked me to paint.  I say picky because she told me exactly what she wanted it to look like and that it could only be slightly distressed, minimally antiqued and somewhat shiny.  She practically stood over me with a whip.  Originally the bed belonged to my husband and I.  It was really outdated because it was a light, almost pickled, wood tone.  Well I tried taking a few pictures on my i phone, but the light was horrible and Miss Carly’s bedroom was…cluttered???  I’m trying to be kind.  

Well here’s is a mini shot and I promise a better round of pictures, hopefully on a camera (not my phone).  I’m sorry it’s such a limited shot but you would just keel right over  if I panned out in either direction.  I kid you not.  I promise a new and improved photo shoot!

Lately I’ve been trying to get to estate sales.  I love the fact that I can preview what they’re selling by looking at their inventory photos online.  I’ve really gotten some pretty interesting things that way and previewing helps me to avoid the sales that don’t have the treasures that are just my style.   Try registering with  They will notify you of estate sales local to your zip code.

I found the table below at an estate sale.  When I bought her for close to nothing… she was rickety, scuffed and the top had a few gouges in it.  I repaired her top by sanding and wood puttying… then staining with min wax dark walnut.  Next,  I tightened all her screws and gave her base a couple of coats of Annie Sloan’s Chalk Paint in Old White.  At first I really wasn’t crazy about her and didn’t do any sanding… but I did antique her quite a bit with a little glaze.  Finally, I waxed her  top and here’s how she looks now!


I actually love this piece.  It’s high and functional and detailed.  I mean look at her top!

I bought these vintage seltzer bottles at a garage sale for a couple of bucks when my kids were babies.  I love them and at one point or another… they’ve lived in just about every room in the house!

Well maybe I do have a New Year’s Resolution after all… A New Camera!  Whaddya think?

Love, Genevieve and Oliver



I’ve had the last week off from work and of course I had a list of things that I wanted to accomplish.  Between my work schedule and the kids’ schedule it’s often difficult to get to everything.  I actually got a lot done throughout the week, but I hadn’t motivated myself to cleaning out my kitchen cupboard.  Not surprising since it was a huge task.  Early yesterday morning I had been reading Shaunna West’s blog, which reviewed her favorite DIY projects of 2011.  One of those was reorganizing her kitchen cupboard.

Well, I took this as a sign that I needed to get started.  Without delay, I quietly snuck downstairs, opened the cupboard and this is what I saw.  Please don’t judge me!

I know, it’s a real mess isn’t it.  It actually doesn’t look bad in this shot, but take it from me it was a mess.  Even more embarrassing, is the fact that we’ve only been in this house for one year.

So… I started by unloading the entire contents.  The spill over was crazy and here’s what it looked like.

And more….

Oh yeah, and a little more.  (I debated about putting this one in.)

It was about this time that the kids started waking up and they were shocked at the mess.  There wasn’t much room for them to wedge themselves in at the table to eat.  I scoped out the rest of my house for extra baskets/containers that I could use to house some of the canned goods/snack items.  Then I woke my husband up and the two of us headed to the local Target to pick up some canisters for the dry goods.

After some reorganizing this is what I ended up with.

Pretty nice , right?

And now for her close-up!


WOW, so much better!!  I couldn’t help but open the cupboard occasionally yesterday, to take a peak at her beauty!   That was totally worth the effort and time!  I’m not going to lie, there were a few things that I removed and placed on my garage shelving but they were items that I had multiples of that were not yet open or things that I rarely use.

I had to give my family a quick tour so they could find what they needed and we should be on our way.  That is, assuming the kids can put things back in the right place!   Should be interesting, what do you think?   We’ll see!!!

Thanks for reading!

Genevieve and Oliver



Before learning about chalk paint, I would sand a piece down to bare wood, using an electric sander and some  serious elbow grease.   Although I like this kind of physical work it is quite time-consuming.  This was one of my first pieces which I originally sanded and painted with a can of Valspar white latex paint.  I then waxed it with a clear wax to give it a little luster.    Both of  my boys actually kicked in and helped me with the painting.  Better to keep them busy… I ‘ve had Mr. L knock over an entire can of green paint, on the driveway!!  Still makes me cringe!

I apologize in advance for the lack of a before picture and the quality of the photo.  This old girl was actually given to me by one of Miss I’s friend’s parents (free!!!).  I thought it would look nice in my sun-room. and it did.  But Miss I liked it too and felt it might  

look better in her bedroom.  (She knows how to work it!)  I replaced the original hard ware.  It’s hard to see but that’s an antique mirror I scored for $7.  It’s also painted.

Exactly one year ago today, our family and I were still living in a cramped hotel room.  Yes, the four kids, my husband and I, our two pups and a guinea pig were all living in cramped quarters for over a month while we waited for our, unexpectedly  and extremely delayed closing.  After much uncertainty (and stress) we finally closed and moved in on New Year’s Eve Day.  We were relieved and sooooo thankful!  The kids and I searched through boxes to find the necessary culinary tools to cook our first home-made meal in months… steaks, king crab legs and string beans.  They swore it was the best meal I’ve ever prepared them!  I think they were just desperate for  home cooking!!!  Anyway, we plan on celebrating with a similar menu served in the dining room to make it a little special.

My kids have had to make an enormous adjustment over the past year.  New home, schools, friends are the obvious changes they’ve had to adjust to.  It’s been a bumpy road and some are still happier than others.  Never-the-less, they’ve done well and I’m proud of each one of them for handling all the changes and hanging in there even at the most difficult times.  I’m hoping that when they’re grown they can look at the experience as a positive one… even if they wont admit it to their father and I.

Praying the New Year brings many blessings including health, happiness and excitement to our home and yours as well!



The Staff at Genevieve and Oliver




One year ago my husband,  4 kids (2 girls/2 boys)  and I moved to a new house in a southern state.  The house was considerably larger and required more furniture than I had to fill it.  I had promised my daughter that I’d paint an old bed that we already owned,  for her to use in her bedroom.  I wanted to try my hand at painting a few other projects before putting a brush to her bed.  I’d never done this before and was a little nervous to start the project.  Plus Miss C is a picky one and I knew she wouldn’t use the bed if it didn’t turn out as well as I made it sound to her!  I found this table at  “the Goodwill” store for $52.  That price fell within my budget!   The table is also solid wood so I couldn’t pass it up.  This is what she looked like before paint.

And here she  is after.  I sanded the top down to the bare wood and stained it Dark Walnut.  The base is painted with Annie Sloan’s Old White Chalk Paint.

Here’s the completed pub table sitting on our back porch, along with two stools I bought on Craiglist and painted yellow.   Now, it’s a great spot to sit and have  a cup of coffee or a cold drink, outside.

This was the spark that began my interest in painting and rehabing furniture.  I’ll share other projects I’ve completed (including Miss C’s bed)  and my finds that are sitting in our garage, waiting for some TLC,  in future posts.

Thanks for reading.

Genevieve and Oliver