Change the World Wednesday, but it’s Thursday

A few things are changing around here. With the colder weather the furniture I still have to work on had to come inside.  A cluttered home isn’t how I can live, it will drive me crazy.  I mention this as it’s the reason I am a day late on Change the World Wednesday.  Here’s a peek at what I mean by cluttered.  These are sitting in front of the couch,


Yes, that is the dresser I picked up last week and the table sitting on top needs one last coat of paint to finish it up, I’ll be sharing that story with you soon.   I am currently working sanding and removing of the veneer on the dresser.  While I do that the drawers needed some place to go.  Not only is the couch blocked by this piece but so is the loveseat at the moment.


Standing up next to the loveseat are the wood blinds I found at the thrift shop last week.  I won’t use plastic mini blinds for health reasons.  As the blinds are exposed to the heat of the sun, or as they age, they give off lead dust.  But as to the dresser.. what I had wanted to do with it was to paint the sides and top, then stain the drawers a nice dark shade.  That is no longer the plan as I just had a conversation with  my son and his wife.  It turns out my granddaughter hasn’t stopped talking about this dresser.  The dresser she currently has is way too big for her needs, her parents dresser is too small for their needs.  So playing musical dressers my granddaughter will get the dresser I am working on, her parents dresser will go to my grandson, who doesn’t have one currently (all his clothes are in the closet on a small bookcase) and finally the largest one will go to my son and his wife.

All that to say the rainbow drawers now have to be considered.  I guess I just need to find a twin to this particular dresser so I can see how it can look with my original inspiration.



My son had to laugh today when talk turned to how much of their furniture has come to them for free.  Here’s just a few:

  • The dresser my son and his wife are using was bought in 1977 at a yard sale for me to use while in high school.  I passed it down to them
  • Both bookcases in the grandchildren’s bedrooms were things I found. One belonged to my grandparents the other I found on the curb and rushed to beat the garbage truck.
  • My granddaughter’s bed (mattress and all) were put together from Freecycle and dumpster finds.
  • The largest dresser they have was found in the trash when the college students went home for summer.
  • The reading nook came from a neighbor who was going to throw it out.
  • Their television also came from a dumpster save, I saw it being walked to the dumpster and asked if I could have it.
  • Their dining room table and chairs belonged to my grandparents
  • The cedar chest also belonged to my grandparents.
  • My grandson’s bed was left to me when my great-grandmother passed away.  My youngest son used it as a teen and then gave it back to me, after a new paint job it was a surprise for my grandson.
  • The chair in their living room was being tossed out, I cleaned it up and stained the wood, Everyone loves it now.

My youngest son and his wife have been careful to do the same in their home.  Their dining room chairs I found on curbs around town and painted to match.  The hutch you see in the picture is the one my son bought for his wife for $50.  The wood box you can see on the hutch contains good silver that belonged to my grandparents with an engraved plate that has their wedding date on it. The tea pots were all gifts, the one on the far right was the one I gave them for a housewarming gift. And those beautiful blue vases, she found them at a yard sale for $3!  On the table you can see a small milk glass bowl, that too belonged to my grandmother.


They too have inherited pieces from my grandparents and my teen years.  This writing table was bought in the 1950s and was part of my grandparents bedroom set, it became my desk in high school and now my daughter-in-law has taken the time to restore it back to the original white.  The small wood box on the table I found at the thrift shop for .25 it holds their  mail.


You may be surprised to learn that they also switched rooms around in their home.  The dining room was intended to be the living room, I think it makes a nice dining room.  I don’t have an updated picture with their artwork hung, but it made the room.

My daughter-in-law has learned quite a bit after assisting in the remodeling of their first home.  She called me today to ask if I wanted my dresser back (which is the matching piece my oldest son has from my high school years)  or could she repurpose it!  She’s going to turn it into an entertainment center and says she will send me the hardware and drawers when she does.  :-)

If you keep your eyes open you can cheaply furnish your home.  You can look for inspiration along the way but be flexible on the exact style and you may find yourself filling your home for nothing, like my sons have.

Enough about furniture, I seem to be spending all my time on it, it’s time for Change the World Wednesday at Reduce Footprints.  Today’s challenge involves food.




This week prepare at least one vegan meal. Vegan means no animal products … no chicken, pork, fish, beef … not even milk, cheese, or eggs. I encourage you to consider whole foods and avoid processed items. If you’re feeling ambitious, go for a whole day or even a week … make a switch for a month and you’ll be my hero!


If you’ve embraced this challenge, or have already made it a lifestyle, please share tips and ideas. Leave a comment on this post or use the link-up below to share vegan recipes and/or articles about incorporating plant-based foods into your diet. Posts can be your own or your favorites from around the blogosphere.



By now you probably know I am a vegetarian.  I don’t classify myself as a vegan because I will still occasionally eat eggs, butter and honey.  But most of my meals are vegan.  Today I have a pumpkin pudding in the crock pot.  I am cooking some pumpkin from the garden and will add tofu and pumpkin spice seasoning. Simple and hearty.  My dinner tonight will be vegetables over quinoa for extra flavoring I like to sprinkle a bit of Tamari sauce over it.  If you aren’t familiar with Tamari sauce it is soy sauce without the wheat.


Autumn means apple season here.

Autumn means apple season here.

Here are a few of my favorite vegan recipes I have stumbled across recently for you to try.

  1. This Orange Julius recipe isn’t vegan as it uses skim milk, I simply substitute vanilla almond milk.  It’s delicious.
  2. Lil Sis has such wonderful vegan recipes on her site but this Fresh Nectarine Pie with Walnut Crust I can’t wait to try for company.
  3. Another one from Lil Sis, this for everyone who is experiencing the cooler temperatures and would like a hearty, healthy soup.  This Gingery Sweet Potato Black Bean soup will hit the spot.
  4. And don’t forget to stop by Reduce footprints and check out this page of vegan recipes submitted by readers.

Do you have a favorite vegan recipe you can share with us?

39 thoughts on “Change the World Wednesday, but it’s Thursday

  1. Well I think I am all caught up and my cuppa now finished… and lunch time here… So off to make something to eat…
    Enjoy your Sunday Lois and I have really enjoyed my hour with you here…
    Love and Blessings
    Sue xoxoxox

      • Yes I did thank you Lois, I managed to catch up on a few blogs, and did watch a little TV, a dancing programme of Ball room dancing that people have to learn from scratch.. And a couple of nature programmes on catch up TV that I missed out on. as I was working Saturday afternoon and over the night.. And we often just listen to music and read etc.. So it was a lazy day!..
        Today I have a couple of hours spare before my Acupuncture appointment..
        Its torrential rain here Again! and for the last week and for the coming week we are forecast more of the same.
        I think we may need to be building Boats! soon LOL….
        The weather is really weird again… Warm one day Cool to cold the next, Thunderstorms, and in the south of Britain they even had a mini Tornado! .. Showing me that our weather systems are truly altering in their intensity.. Plus I feel in my bones we are in for a very harsh winter.. And if the temperature drops then all this rain could be snow!..

        See how I ramble on again!… Glad to have your listening ear :-) and you don’t mind the odd rambling thoughts :-D
        Enjoy your week too
        Love Sue

        • Sue, I feel for you with the rain, we are back to rain here as well. It doesn’t seem to want to stop. I had left a large measuring cup (6 cup) out on the table one night in the morning I found it completely full, and overflowing. While the water table can use it, I am feeling lethargic and less motivated to do much with so much rain that it keeps me stuck indoors.

          Glad you finally got some down time to just relax.

  2. This amused me – we play musical furniture all the time in our family as life situations and needs alter. Many pieces have moved through three or four parts of the family or come back to roost… At the moment we have a dining table, chairs, glass cupboard, a lounger and two Bauhaus armchairs waiting for our youngest daughter when she moves out, as well as crockery, cutlery, glassware and kitchen goods so it won’t cost her much to set up home! They have been moved several times already. My mom has our big dresser and our wedding silver and crockery, which goes with it, because she also inherited our dining table, coffee table and chairs! Our eldest daughter has had several pieces of furniture and sofas, too, and when my middle daughter moved abroad, we inherited her bed and a rug… What goes round comes round?!
    I wondered if that type of foot on your dresser is typical of a particular American style/era, as it’s the third time in a week I’ve seen that curved backwards style and had never seen it on any European furniture?!

    • The dresser is called an Empire Revival Tiger Oak Dresser and was made (from what I know) between 1915 – 1920s. It’s really a lovely piece, solid and oh my gosh, heavy. Most were sold with a large mirror but I didn’t find any evidence of a mirror having been attached at any point.

      The way you and your family share furniture reminds me of how my grandparents talked about their families and how they started out with hand-me-downs. Of course I inherited way too many for my needs as they passed on and shared them around the family. What a better idea than getting rid of things and buying new! Your children are very lucky you have put things aside for them, I don’t even want to imagine what it is like trying to start out in today’s economy.

      My children when growing up not only liked to share furniture but liked to play musical bedrooms. :-) I can’t tell you how many times they conned me into helping them moved everything from one bedroom to another, even claiming my room a few times. :-) As our bedrooms were similar in size, it wasn’t as if they were trying to claim the largest. I usually relented and assisted to avoid any damage to the walls figuring it was a small price to pay for the boys to be happy in our small home, although I finally declared my space off limits. :-) My youngest has informed me that he learned to look at the spaces in a house as flexible and easily changed to reflect his family’s needs. So glad he learned something from those years. :-)

  3. Most of my furniture in my tiny apartment are from my grandmother and my father. I realize that, even though there are new furniture that are better than what I have now and I could buy those new furniture, living with furniture that my family gave me gives my apartment so much life.. and makes me feel loved every time I look at them. :)

    • I’m glad you realized how the hand-me-down furniture makes you feel. I too like pieces with history to them. Although I’m not sure the things you could buy are better built than the pieces that your family have loved for years. I find most of the newer furniture to be a bit flimsy compared to older pieces. And I think it is great that you have the money to replace what you have, but chose not to.

  4. Let’s see – I’ve furnished my whole house on hand me downs, thrift finds and free curb side items – I’ve got two shelves from Ikea and two small end tables from Ikea bought on sale for $90.00 for all four – I’ve spent maybe $400.00 on all my furniture – including dining room, living room, family room, two bedrooms and one office! Can’t get away that cheap in a big box store – now when I go into those big box stores I don’t think their furniture looks good – too perfect – I prefer the imperfect thrift store look! Love your blog!

    • You must have been patient enough to wait for sales on your Ikea purchases because that’s a fantastic price. Only spending $400 on all your home furniture is fantastic, that’s less than rent or mortgage on a small home for one month. I would love to see your home, I am sure it has such character. No, you can’t get away that cheaply at the big box stores and what you find there has no personality or character. When I started my blog it was to find like-minded individuals who shared my values of living with less than perfect and finding their own way in life. I am overwhelmed by the amazing people, like yourself, I have met. You help me to know I’m not alone in the world. Thank you.

  5. I’d like to try that soup, even if things are heating up here now. Soup’s a great way for me to eat more veggies. The pie also sounds good, but I need no sweets!!!! Nice work with all the salvaged and hand me down furniture, impressive indeed!

    • Sarah, I hope you give the soup a try. I practically live on soups during the colder months.

      Thanks, I’ve been having a lot of fun with the furniture. I have a request for a coffee table and will get the old one that is broken when I find one for them. I love when people who see what I do then ask me to find something for them. It makes my day to know people are rethinking the idea that they need to buy new.

  6. Loved the little peak into your children’s homes, the white painted furniture looks so fresh. I think it’s nice to have some pieces with history, all modern can look stunning but a little cold and characterless to me, besides, I don’t think I could be disciplined enough to have no clutter ;)

    • Thank you, Jen. Yes. they love those chairs. Three of them I found outside a home waiting for trash pick up. The family had been having a yard sale and were still outside. I asked if the chairs were really out for trash. The father informed me they weren’t worth anything and yes were out for pickup, but if I really wanted them I could have them. I think for something not worth anything they turned out exceptional.

      I wish I could say getting rid of most of my belongings and moving eliminated clutter. It did for a while but then I got busy with all the saved items I find and restore. I have some project or the tools out it seems all the time. I keep thinking when this last big piece leaves my home will finally feel the way I want it too, then the next piece is brought to my attention and I have to save it. If only I could have one more room with a door to work in, sigh.

  7. The dining room is beautiful! I love the white wooden furniture, and the accessories are really neat too. I love when things in a home have a story. It’s more interesting that décor from Target.
    Our dressers were my MIL’s when she was a kid, and then my husband’s, and now ours. They are dinged up a bit, but solid maple and we plan on giving them to our boys when we no longer need them.
    Our dining table was also my husband’s growing up, his dad bought it at an Amish market, it is also solid wood. Nothing beats solid wood, right?
    Most everything in our house is handed down to us from family members, or purchased at yard sales.

    I was a vegetarian for a long time, and then went back to eating chicken/fish after my husband was diagnosed with celiac disease. Those recipes look very yummy, and is adding to my conviction of going back to vegetarianism.

    Good luck with all your diy projects!


    • Katie, thank you. I think they did a great job putting together their home. The total cost of the furnishings in their dining room was $70 for the hutch and curtains. I agree with you, I hate to fill homes with stuff from the department stores. You can walk in those rooms and tell exactly where everything came from.

      I love Amish built furniture it lasts forever! No nothing beats solid wood, and if you wanted to you could sand down your dressers to remove the nicks and give it a fresh stain and no one would ever know the age of them.

      Glad you enjoyed the recipes. I have been a vegetarian for almost 30 years. I do eat a few things that aren’t when I am at others homes just to make things easier on the host, but I have to be careful what I eat when I do so.

      I do need luck. I want that dresser to move to its new home and out of my space very soon. I’ve started it and am going to work on it all weekend.

  8. That walnut crust sounds delish! I also bookmarked the vegan recipes. I can imagine will check back there often. I am planning on making my Scandalous Black Bean Soup again this week. Yes, the weather seemed right for it.

  9. Once again-a great post! you inspire me to live more consciously. I have decided that I will not allow any furniture into my apartment that is not solid wood–I want it to last and to be able to upcycle it if needed. Recently I was the very blessed recipient of a gorgeous solid wood wall unit for my bedroom-this allowed me to get rid of some very old, wobbly, cheap bookshelves from Ikea, I absolutely love your pained projects and have been inspired to give it a try–although I am first to admit-I don’t have a creative bone in my body. But, I figure it is only paint and if it does not turn out I will just paint it again.

    • Lil, it is only paint and if you ask around I am sure you can get your hands on plenty of free paint. I have been given many cans of paint when friends and family have bought a new home. The paint they find leftover from the previous owners is usually not to their liking and are happy to give it to me. And when they do repaint the leftover paint also comes my way. :-)

      You know I do like Ikea for many items. I have a lovely cabinet that is solid wood except for the backing board but I was very shocked to see how flimsy the Billy bookcases are. I’m glad you received a solid wood case to replace those flimsy ones.

      I do have a couple of items in my home that aren’t solid wood, but they were found and fit a need at the time. Should I find something similar I will replace them and pass the existing ones on.

  10. That nectarine pie looks delicious!
    Wonderful to hear of young people that are happy to remake furniture rather than rush out to buy everything new, you have past on some good life skills there.

    • I am SO looking forward to making that pie! Thank you, my children I knew would be thrifty, but I am so happy to see their wives have been so eager to embrace a diy lifestyle and remake items to fit their homes. I am truly blessed to have them in our family.

      • That’s lovely :) I have one son who is happy with whatever but another who likes nice modern things, he buys me big presents and I despair of the money he spends on me sometimes (not that I don’t appreciate the sentiment he expresses that way) he really doesn’t get that for me, it’s totally unnecessary lol

        • Isn’t it funny how we raise our children the same but they turn out so differently? My oldest is fine with used and hand-me-downs but if he had all the money he could ever need he would furnish his home with modern. My youngest says he’s tired of living with antiques, but lets his wife do what she wants in the house. The only thing he puts his foot down about is what the television sits on. Men :-) When he was young I believed you couldn’t touch an antique or it would lose its value. One day I walked in and felt a heaviness in the home. It was then I changed my mind and decided that if I wanted to love the pieces I needed to lighten them up. I think my youngest may have felt that heaviness and that’s why he believes he doesn’t like antiques.

          I feel your pain with the gifts. I was very firm with my boys, insisting I didn’t need them to spend money on me. We compromised they buy me a gift I can use that doesn’t cost much and I accept graciously. Last year the main gift I received was a staple gun. I have used it a lot.

          • Yes, it is funny, both my boys are very different. My youngest boy used to love antiques but has shifted to modern.

            Funny about the TV table :) TV is so important to most men lol.

            Good pressy, a staple gun. I ask for something for the garden but generally get that AND something else despite me asking him not to. He’s a darling, I appreciate he thinks I should have these things :)

          • I”m always curious why people are attracted to the modern look. For my oldest, he likes black, metal and things like concrete counter tops. But being very tall he also likes higher ceilings. Then he loves natural light and is drawn to be open walls of windows. I think he sees the modern look as having space for his size.

            Yes, the BIG television seems to be the thing men love. I don’t know about your country but here “man caves” are all the rage. Basically it’s a part of the house that men claim as their own, usually a basement, where a huge TV is the focal point and everything is very masculine. To constantly hear about these man caves I think programs them into believing the TV is their domain. :;-(

          • Yep, we do have that here. Roger’s cave is the basement where he can potter, no TV there thank god, that would drive me nuts. It’s a stupid trend but I am sure men just love it!! Seems and rather self absorbed way to spend time if they have families, partners.

            Yes my son love black and steel, modern leather. Holds no appeal for me at all lol

          • Yes, my staple gun was a great gift! My son even took the time to try every one in the store to see which was the easiest to use taking into account the lack of strength I have in my hands. That alone made the present the best he could have given me.

  11. Love how your furniture has been passed around and recycled, and its looking lovely… Love the sound of that nectarine pie with walnut crust I need to check that out! :-)
    I made a delicious home made tomato soup today from our green house tomatoes, which are ripening all at Once.. so needed to use some up, I can just about sqeeze some in the freezer so look out soon for that one :-)

    • That nectarine pie has my mouth watering. But I know myself to know an entire pie is too much to have here unless I have dinner company, hurry up holidays. :-)

      Yes, we do pass around quite a few things. That was only a short list of the items my boys now have in their homes from my grandparents or things we’ve found. but I think it’s great that something bought at a yard sale, already used, in 1977 or the 1950s is still being used and in good shape.

      Your tomato soup reminds me it’s been a while since I had any. I always ate it with grilled cheese growing up, I think I need a new sandwich to go with it and start making it again.

    • Daniela, I get so much inspiration from the things you a have done in your home. While I can paint and even rewire lamps I have a lot to learn before I can make some of the lovely things you have made for your home.

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