Life Through a Brand New Camera Lens

I finally did it! I upgraded my camera. I got tired of using my cell phone and the poor quality pictures I was posting to this blog because I felt like it wasn’t doing some of my craft work and displays justice so this past week I purchased my new Nikon D3200 Camera.

It was quite the ordeal getting the camera because at first I thought that I didn’t have the battery when I was surveying my inventory. I took it over to my parents to help me look and we found the battery but realized that what it was actually missing was the charger. I called Target where I purchased the camera and asked what could be done. They didn’t have any cameras to exchange it with since this particular camera is not the most recent model and won’t be reordered but they did say that they would give me a full refund.

I did some quick research to figure out what a replacement charger would cost and found out that it was $50 on Amazon to replace the Nikon charger. When I went into Target I asked them if it was possible to still keep this camera but get $50 off to cover the cost of the charger. The manager there was happy to oblige my request (one of the many reasons I love shopping at Target) so I got to keep the camera. I went on Amazon and did some research and actually found some really favorable reviews in an off-brand charger that was made specifically for Nikon camera batteries. This charger was only $14.99 instead of $50 so I ordered it and with my Prime membership I had it the next day! The charger worked great and my camera was up and running. This is a thrifty lesson for everybody – you don’t get anything unless you ask. I ended up saving $35 on this camera + it was already on sale + it came with a free wifi adapter which was a $70 value so really I saved well over $100!

I decided to take some pictures for you all of some of the vignettes and décor that I have already put out there. A sort of recap of where I am now and then I have some major things in mind (not to mention some newfound inspiration and energy to get it done which I attribute to my new 5:00 am runs with Rusty that I just started last week) for where my house is going to go from here.

So here’s where I’m at:


My nightstand arrangement in my bedroom

My nightstand arrangement in my bedroom

Living Room

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Adorable Dog and Cat

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And now I’m off to spend my newfound inspired energy on some projects to share with you all in the weeks to come!

Let’s party! Linking up with:

Vintage Charm



Thrifty Thursday: A Day Late But Never A Dollar Short

So, I completely realize it’s Friday but yesterday I had a different priority…Magic Mike XXL. Holy Abs, what a funny movie! Hot guys and humor. Perfect combination. Mmmm…Joe Manganiello….

Anyway…on with the thriftiness.

So this past weekend, I dragged my brother to an antiques show at the Marbold Farmstead in Greenview, IL which was about an hour drive. This was the 3rd Annual antique show they have had there with the goal of raising money to restore the old farmstead. The house itself was incredible! Winding staircases several stories high and solid structure.

marbold farmstead

Picture borrowed from – check it out!!

There were a lot of really incredible antiques at this show too. I held a painted box from 1793 (which was also $325) but just the idea that I touched something that old was kind of incredible. I did make a couple of purchases, though nothing too terrible old. I got a double-boiler pot (most likely from the 1930s-40s) that somebody had converted into a planter for $10!

double boiler pot

I also got a full sheet of stamps from 1981 that depict all of the state birds and state flowers that was already fully framed. Not necessarily worth any money but I talked the ladies at the booth down from $15 to $10. Considering that the stamps are $.20 each and there were 50 of them, that is $10 right there so essentially I got it framed for free. My quest is to have something that has to do with birds in each room of my house. Not sure which room this will go in yet, but I’m thinking bedroom.

bird stamps

I also got some old lace for a craft project I’m working on. Right now I am just in the gathering materials phase so I will reveal the step by step of the project in a later post.

In the afternoon I decided to check out an Antique Mall about 15-20 minutes from me with Sister 3 that I had heard about but never been to. I spent about $15 there and got these cute items:

collage from antique mall hanna city

Sunday morning I kept my thrifty weekend alive by going to an in-town Flea Market with my mom. She and I had a really great time and found some kind of off-the-wall things. I got this box of blocks after my mom showed me how neat the interlocking ones were (from the 1950s). It was marked at $10 but the old man gave it to me for $8!

box of blocks

My mom and I also found these insulators for $1 each. I see these at almost every flea market I go to but never really understood what they were so I always passed them by. My mom explained to me that they were used on top of electrical poles and now people can use them in windows as a sort of prism or can paint them, like the painted one that has been on her windowsill for many years. I bought two of them. I’m not positive what I am going to do with them yet, but I liked the story of them. She also told me that sometimes good ol country boys would use them for target practice. J


My last purchase was this little iron trivet for $2. These are used for hot pots so they don’t sit directly on the countertops in kitchens. I thought it would be a sweet addition to one of my kitchen vignettes…that is, if I don’t use it for its intended purpose! I am truly living by the “don’t have anything around that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful” mantra so when I find things that can be both, I am always extra excited.


Had some thrifty successes this weekend, but what made this a successful weekend overall was not the purchases I made, but driving down country roads getting lost with my brother and listening to my mother tell stories about items at the flea market and then sitting down with her at her house to play with my blocks when we were finished. The items come with a history, but it is also the history we create with these antiques that make them special.

I know, a little sappy, but the most important things in life are not things.

Happy Thrifting!

Thrifty Thursday: No Pain No Gain

This past weekend 2 of my sisters and I journeyed to the 3rd Sunday Market in Bloomington, IL. I had my list in hand of items I knew I wanted to look for and I was excited to get to spend yet another day at flea markets, looking at beautiful items and imagining them in my home or imagining other uses for them. If I can someday make this my full time job, I would be blissfully happy.

I had some great successes at the market, bringing home a couple more tins for my collection, a pair of stools to reupholster for my craft room, an awesome new weather vane for display, a wooden silverware divider which is now being used to keep my paints picked up while still looking beautiful, a wooden crate which was a steal at $5 and a bird book which is one of a set of 4 that I am seeking out for my collection.

antique stools june 3rd sunday collage

One of my favorite finds of the day was a dog hook that looked exactly like my baby Rusty! Just look at them:

Rusty hook

But, as the title of this post suggests, there are no gains without a little pain. While perusing one of the outside buildings I was nailed in the side of the head by a table that a woman was irresponsibly carrying with the legs facing out. Her reaction being “oh I knew I was going to do that.” Oh did you? Then why did you carry it that way?!? My sister said I was too nice because all I told the lady was to go away when she wouldn’t stop asking me if I was okay. It did hurt and if I’m being perfectly honest I ended up with a headache for the rest of the day but I wouldn’t have felt any better if I had been nasty to the woman. I’m using this as a reminder to everybody out there to please be aware of your surroundings when in big crowds at flea markets. It’s so great to find a good deal on a piece of furniture, but make sure you are able to securely carry it through a crowd and if you can’t manage it yourself, please get help! I never even saw this lady coming and was not given the opportunity to get out of the way. Don’t risk hurting somebody else by being neglectful.

The other little bit of pain that I experienced was self-inflicted. Sister 2 got a really cool dresser for her sewing room that we had to drive in to the market to get. We finally got it loaded up and it fit in the back perfectly with all of the other items we had purchased when I saw the pair of stools and jumped out of the car to go get a closer look. They were exactly what I had in mind for my craft room and I got the pair for $20 (marked at $25). The guy at the booth was going to help us strap them to the top of my sister’s SUV but she wasn’t keen on that idea so this is what ended up happening:


Since they were my stools I didn’t mind in the least but by the end of the 45 minute car ride I really needed to stretch…and tinkle.

I’m so excited about these stools though. They were my favorite find. I can’t wait to recover them and show you all how I did it! (I really need to get on some of these projects…plenty of ideas and materials, not enough time!)

Happy Thrifting!

Flea Market Essentials

Going to all of these flea markets, garage sales, antiques shows and craft sales regularly is a new thing for me. These are always things that I have enjoyed doing but now that I’m throwing myself into it with the 4 Sisters Peoria business I am finding myself somewhat unprepared for what I might encounter. I wanted to share with all of you a list that I have comprised over the past several weeks of my must-have items to help you in your treasure hunts.
Did I miss anything? What are your must haves when going to flea markets?

Happy Thrifting!