And now with the Spring Cleaning…

Big Trash Pick Up…a chance to get out the old and simplify your life.  Here in Cuyahoga Falls it is the first two weeks of May.  This year they extended it to the third week (that’s this one ending now) because of the unfortunate flooding brought by the storms last week.  Many people suffered loss to home and property.

Bags upon bags of stuff cast off to the curb.  I try to give them the benefit of the doubt that it was all flood damaged and beyond repair…but some of it was so overwhelming for people that they tossed it all.  I feel so sorry for them.

This is, however, a chance to take an interesting look at our throw away culture.  Could it have been fixed or cleaned?  Could it have been given away to friends or family or donated?  Even garage sales (once again assuming it could be fixed or cleaned…or that anything was wrong with it in the first place).

I have also been thinking about not just what we throw out, but what we buy in the first place.  Particle board furniture.  If I had a dollar for every particle board laminate covered bookshelf on the curb I would be RICH!  Would all-wood furniture have held up better?  Would it be repairable after the flood?  Would it be so sturdy and important that they wouldn’t dream of tossing it?  Food.  For.  Thought.

I like to think I did my part this week.  I’m now very familiar with the trash pick up schedule of my town.  I spent maybe an hour each day driving around to find “the good junk” as my four year old says.  Chairs.  Lots of chairs.  Portage Trail Barn, where chairs go to die.  Just kidding.  It’s actually where they come to be reborn.    Portage Trail Barn: Trash Picking

I see the chippy blue one in the garden.  The light wood one will be a fall pumpkin chair at the next Barn Sale and the two darker wood ones…might be just used as chairs.  They’re in great condition.  I’ll ask around.

“Does anyone need two chairs? ”

Ok.  Let me know.  Also pictured a outdoor fireplace stand and two cute bookshelves and one cute dog.  Nothing wrong with them.  Might need some paint touch ups or some treats.  And below are the findings from a different day.  Check out those adorable kids chairs.  I love me some bushel baskets-that one you might not see until Winter Barn Sale as it is already half way there with the green and red stripes.

Portage Trail Barn: Chairs and Thrift Store Finds

The real beauty is that small table in the lower right.  Such detail!  Now the side you don’t see is all broken up.  Bummer.  But it is so unique and cool that it is worth the effort of restoring it a bit.  I’ll see how that project goes and let you know!

Now what am I going to do with all the other chairs, you ask?  So glad you did.  I snagged two for flower supports in my front garden bed.  I have three groups of peonies and I love them so much but they need a LOT of support.  So instead of metal rings or tomato cages I use chairs that are missing their seats.  The one on the left had a woven seat that came unravelled and the one on the right had a basket seat that had busted.  The back came off that one also and I put it in a different part of the garden…just for fun.  I would still like one more chair for the front bunch.  The chairs are just the right height to support the blooms.  Speaking of which I cannot WAIT to see these peonies flower!

Portage Trail Barn: Use Chairs as Garden Flower Supports

Fine Print: Should this happen to inspire you to look for “the good junk” out of the trash please, please, puh-lease use common sense.  Don’t pick up anything that could cut or hurt you.  Be cautious of fabrics as you don’t know what they’ve come into contact with.  It might be illegal.  It might make someone mad.  Don’t cause a traffic issue by stopping at the curb.  Be smart out there people.  So there, now you know.  And knowing is…