Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Wicker for Gram

My family is very blessed to have three sets of grandparents all about a stone's throw away. I thank God DAILY for them all, as do my girls. They've got a Grammy, a Grandma and a Great Gram. Rarely a week goes by that they don't spend at least a few solid hours with each of their grandparents, including their Great Gram, my hubby's maternal grandmother. I remind the girls often how special it is for them to have her in their life, especially when lots of their friends have never had the opportunity to even meet their great-grandparents.

Gram is a young whipper snapper at 75.

She still takes my girls for walks to the park, lets them help her tend to her garden, bakes cookies with them and reads them lots of books. If it weren't for her, my kids probably wouldn't know who Elvis is or recognize his music.

With 5 grand children and 10 great-grandchildren of her own, she's "Gram" to countless others. I married into Gram's family not long after my own last living grandmother passed away. Gram is just one of those sweet and loving grandmothers that never hangs up the phone without telling you she loves you and never greets or parts from you without saying the same and giving lots of hugs and kisses too.

Gram would do anything for anyone. And we would do anything for her.

So after picking up on a few subtle hints last year, for Gram's birthday this past fall we decided to give her some new furniture for her enclosed porch where she spends a lot of time. For decades she has been using an old white wicker set her husband originally gave to her. While it had sentimental value, it had seen it's better days. Ideally, I would have presented her with something on her actual birthday but November isn't the ideal time to buy new outdoor furniture. So we told her that we'd probably wait until stores came out with new inventory in the spring and let her help pick out something she liked. I assumed we'd probably end up going the rattan route - fake wicker - or deck-type furniture.

For the last month or so she and I had been talking about how its time for us to go furniture shopping. She's seen a patio set at Walmart she liked. Well....a couple weeks ago on a Wednesday evening I happened to be kid-free and driving by the Salvation Army about 15 minutes before they closed. I buzzed in quick, still on the hunt for a shelving unit for my oldest girls' room. Lo and behold, there was treasure I was not expecting - a gorgeous real wicker loveseat, chair and ottoman, including all the cushions and pillows. Beautiful, great condition, and fairly priced. The date on the price tag informed me it had just been put on the floor that day. I didn't think it would last the 10 days needed to get a price reduction (thanks to my mom I know these things).

I called up Gram and told her she had to go down and check it out as soon as she could the next morning...which turned out would not be until after 11am. I prayed that it would still be there if it was meant to be. Sure enough - it was and she liked it. So we planned for her to come to my house to stay with my kids while I ran down with my "Stow 'n Go" van to fit the three pieces in.

After securing the furniture price tags at the front counter to stake my treasure, I took a 10 minute detour to the back of the store. I grabbed up these two oval frames for $2 each:

These will be perfect for a project I've been dreaming up for at least a year now. They will be repainted and will supplement a few mini oval frames I already have. I'm not sharing any more details on that just yet...stay tuned. :)

I also found a Barbie umbrella for the girls for $3. It was an instant hit (especially with the weather lately).

So I paid for everything and was able to load up the furniture with ease (not like the last time I tried to leave Sally's with a big piece of furniture). From there I drove to Gram's house, single-handedly unloaded everything and put them on her porch, to be arranged later.  I had to get back quickly so she could get to a lunch date with a friend.

Here it is almost two week's later and Gram has settled everything in on her porch.

Finally, 6 months later, happy belated-birthday wicker for Gram. WE LOVE YOU!

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