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Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Shopping Trash To Pay For A New Paint Job

Ten years ago, the counselor and I bought a house just up the street from where I grew up.

My parents only lived 4 houses away.

This is the walk to my parent's home. It's a lovely street with lots of big trees.

I married a man who loves me and loves my family, so this arrangement was alright with him. The best thing about this house:

1. It’s in a cul-de-sac

2. It has 29 citrus trees

3. It has a pool.

This home had everything we wanted from four bedrooms to the sweetest memories of a lifetime, so why did we move 2 years ago to a new house?

Because we found a bargain, a deal we couldn’t pass up; we found a foreclosure in near perfect condition.

This new home we purchased is just 2 houses from our old home and 2 houses closer to my parents (and the counselor still loves them). It’s not in a cul-de-sac and only has 5 citrus trees (an amazing pink grapefruit tree that I could never live without), but the pool! Don’t get me started on the pool. Alright, get me started!

I must say, for a girl who is ½ mermaid and ½ human this pool is the perfect fit. If I had to live in this pool, I’d be happy. It’s surrounded by pine trees and I feel like I’m swimming in the mountains.

In the summer, the pool is shaded by 2:00pm in the afternoon and my kids don’t get sunburned.

The pool is a huge conversation piece because it is so large. It’s also old and worn-out, but here to stay. The counselor knows about me and water. He knew right from the start I would need a pool. With 4 boys, living in Arizona, can you imagine my pain if I didn’t have one? I told you not to get me started about the pool, but there I went. By the way, we purchased the diving board off Craig's List for $100.00. New, a diving board runs around $1,000.00.

When we moved into this beautiful foreclosed home, there were very few things we wanted to change.

1. We put a pool fence around the pool with fencing we found on Craig’s list for $500.00.

2. We cut down a huge dead cottonwood tree.

3. We wanted to paint the trim of the home. Good-bye 1970’s brown, hello modern white.

The money? Where to get the money!

Over the last month, I earned the money on EBay.

The house went from this (yucky brown trim, but really cute kids):

To this:

The backyard and its huge white gorgeous patio is begging for a wedding reception or something amazing like that.

I love it. More importantly, I love that if I want something special like a $1,000.00 paint job, I shop trash, work trash and ship trash. The money is there for me to earn, I just have to be creative and persistent enough to find it.

I’ve been trying for two years now to get a Young Adult novel published. When I get discouraged, I remember a quote my dad told me last year.

“In most cases, perseverance supersedes talent.”

Quote from Dad

Being talented is subjective, but being persistent is something I have control over.

Thanks for the support Dad and I love that we get to see each other everyday when you ride your bike down the street. Here’s a picture of my parents at a Father’s Day dinner a few years ago at our old home.

And the ties in the background? I found a box with about 100 ties in it at a yard sale. I paid $5.00 for all the ties and hung them ALL from my ceiling in celebration of Father’s Day. There was a huge sign in the family room that read:

“Dad, We will always be tied together.”

I owe my work philosophy to my dad. Being a hard worker isn’t just something he taught me, it’s something he does himself. Working hard to achieve a goal leaves me even more motivated to achieve the next and that’s something I hope my kids will learn from me too.


  1. What an awesome post! I love that pool too...when's it open?!lol! Thanks for the inspiration today!

  2. Awesome post and awesome inpiration on being persistent. I too work at being frugal and saving and it's so fun to get the outcome you desire. Thanks for posting.

  3. After my parents died, my middle daughter and her husband bought the house that I grew up in. My granddaughter is still playing under the huge magnolia tree that my folks planted when I was about a year ago. My own three kids grew up playing under that same tree. I'm glad the house is still in our family. Something about those family roots!!
    Take care, Sue