Just call me Jadis

There’s a character in “The Walking Dead” called Jadis.

She is the leader of a group of people that live in a huge junkyard. They’re a group of scavengers, and they’ve built quite a maze through the junkyard they call home.

Yesterday, at work, one of our egg suppliers and I saw four scarecrows on the top of the trash heap that filled the boss’s trailer. We asked the boss if he was really going to throw them away. His reply was “if you want them, take them. They need a few repairs”

The egg supplier stuffed one in her SUV. I managed to stuff the other three in my truck. Two of them had to be tied to the bed because I could only fit one in my back seat.

As I dug them out if the trash pile, I couldn’t help but be entertained. I got to thinking about how much stuff I’ve scavenged from my workplace.

  • Perfectly edible food that can’t be sold because it looks funny
  • Perfectly edible grass-fed beef that can’t be sold because the freezer malfunctioned and the meet defrosted (it was still plenty cold, so it was safe to cook and eat)
  • Almost a whole case of honey with chunks of honeycomb in it that had crystallized a bit
  • Reclaimed wood from pallets and signs
  • Whole pallets to use for whatever Mr B thought he might want to use them for
  • Bales of straw to use for our chickens nests
  • Seeds from rotting pumpkins and gourds, potatoes to cut and plant
  • A bag of potting soil given to me by a customer who needed to make space in his truck to hold firewood
  • Firewood and kindling
  • Wood chips and tree bark for the compost heap
  • Tote bags from the ranch that supplies our beef
  • Mesh bags (like the ones 50 pounds of onions come in) to give to the neighbor to give to her friend that raises and sells ducks and chickens and such
  • A shoe try-on bench to make a coffee table
  • Three scarecrows

Just call me Jadis.


Check that off the list

The bathroom vanity is done.

We started with this as inspiration.

What Rude Ass came up with was this.

Here, you can see the guys cutting our countertop off of a remnant of a slab of granite.

The sink is in place, the faucet is connected, the drain/stopper is in place (well, not in this picture, but in real life).

I like the mix-matched hardware on the drawer and doors.

Please ignore the lack of grout in the tiles. We are still waiting on the adhesive to dry in the shower so everything can be grouted and sealed at the same time.

I’m thrilled with the sourcing of so many of the materials we used:

  • Countertop is a piece of remnant
  • Vessel sink purchased from a salvage shop in town
  • The metal insets in the doors? The back of the chicken shelf
  • Those tiles? Part of our haul from the defunct tile distributor warehouse we were allowed to raid (they were dumping pallets of tile into a dumpster as we raided, so we definitely kept the tiles out of a landfill)
  • Some of the wood in the vanity and faucet mount was scraps from other projects
  • And my proudest moment is the faucet and stopper. Those came from a salvage store nearby. It was new old stock, and it’s quality plumbing fixtures (metal, not plastic). The faucet and stopper all together cost me $20 plus tax.
  • Medicine chest: antique, gifted to us by a neighbor

I’m also happy to have Rude Ass building custom pieces for us. It supports a local, skilled craftsman, and that’s very important to us.

It’s a huge step forward, and it’s making me so impatient to be finished with the build. Hopefully, when Sunshine gets back from out of town, we can grout and seal the tile, and move the washing machine into its designated space. Rome wasn’t built in a day; unfortunately, neither is our little house.

Meet the Flintstones: Mrs B

Mrs B is a science teacher. She cam to me a couple of months ago wanting to know if I needed some old canning lids, or if it was ok to donate them to a science project for her class.

She brought me one of the finished objects, and I was delighted with the repurposing going on here.

They made little cars with old soda cans, old jar lids, old straws; balloons, glue, and tape.

The students would blow up the balloon using the straw; and as the balloon deflated the car would go.

I think it’s a pretty fun way to demonstrate physics to kids.

A huge thank you to Mrs B for sharing her science project (and creative repurposing) with us.

Bits and bobs

Fancy black switch and outlet plates for the bedroom

Purple tile for the shower walls (bought from a salvage store like ReStore; Rude Ass said he knew that was the one before I even saw them, and sure enough when I did–the heavens opened and light shone down and angels sang “hallelujah”)

Cobalt tiles for bathroom backsplash (part of our haul from the tile warehouse, please excuse the dirt on all the tile, they’ll be cleaned for installation)

Commercial grade non slip tiles for the bathroom floor (more of our haul from the tile warehouse, we’re using mostly the grey, with an occasional tan one thrown in randomly)

Handle for barn door

Leather for pull on bathroom side of barn door (taken from an old Linea Pelle belt I bought from Barney’s and never ever wore not even once)

Some planter dishes I’m turning into trinket dishes (I’ll be attaching giraffe figurines to them after Rude Ass clearcoats them)

The giraffes that will be in the trinket dishes

The niche in my shower

The tiles for the niche (even more of our haul from the tile warehouse)

Primitive medicine cabinet for Sunshine’s razor and shit

This groovy-as-hell light fixture that Rude Ass salvaged from fuck knows which 70s dive bar (Sunshine hates it, so I don’t get to hang it from the ceiling, so Rude Ass is going to make it into a table lamp)

Shelf brackets (left over from a job Sunshine did a couple of years ago)

The scrap wood we’re turning into a shelf for those brackets (going to paint it my goof blue, which is kind of robin egg pale blue)

Hinges for the bathroom vanity (bought black and given a quick patina with some craft paint)

Door pulls for bathroom vanity

Knobs for bathroom vanity drawers

Wall mount faucet for our vessel sink (another score from the salvage place, it even had the matching pop-up drain thingy and I only paid $20 for all of it!)

Ceiling fans that Sunshine will be picking up on his way home tomorrow

Galvanized metal from the back of the chicken shelf (we couldn’t bring ourselves to let it cover the reclaimed wood wall, so it will be cut and upcycled into insets in the doors of the vanity)

Last but not least, this toilet paper holder that made me laugh until I snorted like a pig

Desperate times…

…call for desperate measures.

It started raining earlier today, and by mid-afternoon, the steps to the RVs out here were already coated in ice. It got ugly quick.

It is now only 7:30PM and this

is some bullshit.

I went to the laundry-pantry-room to get a can of kosher salt to ice down my front steps and we didn’t have any more.

Side note: it probably all got dumped in RV holding tanks during the last hard freeze when everybody’s drain lines froze along with their supply lines. We had to quickly thaw those blockages out when water came back because the constant drip in every faucet (to prevent a rezfreeze) filled tanks fast and they had to be dumped.

What I DID have, however, was a rather healthy supply of bags of this

Which is the desperate measure I just employed to ice my front steps.

Y’all stay warm and dry, wherever you are. I’m in for the night, warm and dry with hot cocoa just begging me to drink it; and a backup plan to retreat to the house (where there’s a fireplace) if we lose power.

House from found objects

We are expanding the footprint of our shop at work. The boss has been doing some major cleanup.  Like, REALLY cleaning up, instead of just pushing all the junk to the back of the property and forgetting about it.

I had been wanting to ask him about one certain piece for a while. This past Sunday, I found it on the loaded trailer heading to the landfill. So I stole it.

Yes, that is exactly what it appears to be. A store fixture bench for trying on shoes. Laying on its side. Because lazy.

I’m going to have Rude Ass do a little cutting and welding and turn it into a storage ottoman/coffee table with a giant cushion on top. The next door neighbor has a friend that does upholstery, so I can get any kind of cushion I want. I’m thinking something utterly ridiculous, like purple velvet or purple faux fur. I also think a nice coat of matte black paint would do wonders for it.

It definitely keeps with the theme of “house from found objects”, doesn’t it? 


I’ve been feeling a bit uninspired here lately. Part of it is probably attributable to physical pain from aggravating old hip & back injuries; but I don’t think that covers all of it. Maybe there’s some seasonal affective disorder going on.

Whatever, it is what it is and what it is needs to be over because I’m starting to hit crunch time for making Christmas gifts. They might all be “smalls” and not big-ass blankets or whatever, but there are a lot of them, so time’s a’wastin’ and shit.

So, what did I do yesterday?

If you guessed “not Christmas presents”, ding ding ding you win a cardboard cookie!

I made a throw pillow out of an old pair of straight-leg suede pants (such a beautiful dark chocolate color!) Because I don’t already have too many fucking pillows on the bed.

So, I’m writing about my lack of motivation to be productive in hopes that a written record would hold me accountable. It works in my 12 step recovery, so maybe it will work for Christmas gifts.

For our nuclear families, I’m making full sets of cleaning items: machine washable sniffers, dust mitts, bottle scrubbers, blind cleaners, kitchen sponges, and so on. My girl Tia counts as nuclear family, as far as I’m concerned, so that’s a sixth set of cleaning implements to crochet.

For my boss and his wife, hats in their favorite colors. 

For Biff (aka Goldilocks), a hat and a stocking that will be stuffed with little gifts + the hat. I’m on the hunt for some seeds that will sprout twinkies for him, since he considers twinkies to be there own food group that is indispensable to life. So far, my search has been fruitless.

I had wanted to crochet a blanket for Sunshine, but that ship has long since sailed for this year, so maybe next year I’ll get started on that in time.

I’m also fairly certain that I’m forgetting a number of people that I’ll wind up making gifts for, but really… I’ll worry about that tomorrow. After all, tomorrow is all other day.