Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Please, for the sake of your marriage, buy patio furniture that doesn't require cushions.

I hope you all had a great Memorial Day Weekend.

Our humble salute to the men and women who died for
our country and our freedom.

We spent some time with some friends around the fire pit with marshmallows and music. It was great.

We also tended to some projects.
We fixed up the patio area a bit....
I planted some more flowers....
The pumpkin patch now has a border....
Brock cleaned the gutter. Yes, singular.
Thing 2 took two steps.
I made red wine spritzers that were delicious.
I almost got into a brawl with my husband and Home Depot asked us not to return. Just kidding?

You have all probably figured out by now that I like deals.

I like to find something that someone else cast off and make it beautiful and useful.

I tell myself that I am being creative! I am recycling! I am thrifty!

But really, I'm usually just low on cash and can't buy what I really want. That... and I really do get a thrill from making an inexpensive flea market item be an beautiful centerpiece of an area that I designed.

When I found this little outdoor couch for $15 at Habitat for Humanity, five years ago, I couldn't pass it up. So I purchased it, loaded it in my truck and brought it to the Land of Misfit Treasures, also known as my house. $15! That is one meal at Applebee's, or one glass of wine at Cafe Vino.

To date that little couch has caused at least three decent arguments with my spouse and cost a grand total of $341 plus tax.

The couch was originally white metal with yellow cushions. It sat for a good year by our fire pit and I realized that moldy faded cushions with wet leaves shoved deep in the crevices seemed.... I don't know.... somewhat trashy? This all happened around the Black Patty O'Furniture period (I decided I wanted all my outdoor furniture to by painted black, in case that wasn't obvious). So I bought 8 cans of black spray paint to give my yard full of mismatched finds some cohesiveness. It worked. Then I started to look for cushions to replace the yucky yellow ones. That is when I realized that cushions are apparently the equivalent of gold. If you have ever shopped for patio furniture cushions, you know that I am referring to the ridiculous price that retailers want for a hunk of foam covered in fabric. After hunting through every damn store in town, with a baby in tow, I settled on the cheapest ones I could find. Three $25 apiece chair cushions from Wal-Mart for a grand total of $75 plus tax. They were a little small and too thin, but I added some cute throw pillows and made them work. That is, until Brock was reroofing the house that fall and a shingle blew off the roof. It landed on a cushion, where it stayed on the cushion- in the boiling hot sun- until I returned home five days later.

Argument number one:
Me, upon spying the shingle on the cushion in 80 degree heat on the south facing patio, "Did you not see this?" I know he saw it because he walked by it every time he stepped out the door.
Brock, casually, because he is casual about everything: "Oh whoops. It was windy."
Me, peeling the tar covered shingle off my new cushion: "I understand how it happened. What I don't understand is why you left it there.
Brock: "It's no big deal. I can get it off."
Me: "You think you can get tar out of fabric? Go for it."
Brock: "I can! I'll just use Goof Off. That stuff takes off everything."
Me, having heard numerous times about the miraculous abilities of Goof Off, but never seeing any results. Ever. Because the husband would have to actually get the Goof Off from the garage and USE IT to get results: "Umhm."

So I switched the cushions around and put a throw pillow over the tar stain. Then we used it two more summers.

Until this year, when the addition of massive fading and a hole made by one of my precious animals (right next to the tar stain) made the cushions appear, well, trashy. Again.

These cushions look how I feel most days.
Game over.

Actually, the entire patio was looking like Romper Room gone 8 Mile.

Good Lord, someone call the maid. Who did this?

"Hi. Can I have some tuna?"
Let's pin the mess on Smelly Cat....
 I was determined to get better cushions this time. I had taken the measurements of the couch (66"x22") numerous times so that I was informed when I went shopping. I even have my own tape measure, which I purchased in purple so that it wouldn't end up in Brock's tools. Brock, the man who lost one of our spade shovels... who threw away our $250 underground dog fence mechanism because it had a break in $20 worth of the line... who I have made go dumpster diving because he threw away a check.... who has to buy things that he already owns because he misplaced it.... Brock, the man who is unable to put things away. You get the picture. My highly skilled, talented, craftsman of a husband, who is also highly scatter-brained does not have permission to touch his type-A personality of a wife's tools. Ever. So I take my purple tape measure to the stores and measure all the fucking cushions. They are all either 20x20 or 24x24. Ugh. And I wasn't going to try making cushions again because of the crack addicted monkey ones that I already made and unfortunately now own. I give up.

Then something miraculous happened. We were at Home Depot last weekend with a gift card. We were going to buy a tree to replace the dead one in the corner of the property.
My mind floated to the pathetic couch and I said, "Hey, let's go look at the cushions. That couch is really looking horrible."
Brock naturally said: "Okay."

So we walked over to the outdoor furniture section and lo and behold! I found a brick red cushion in 22"x23" that PERFECTLY matched the shutters. There were three left. It was meant to be! I didn't even think these cushions existed and I was ecstatic. Search over. I exclaimed "OMG! These are exactly the right size and color!"
They were $69.95 apiece. Ouch.
Brock said: "They are really expensive. We could buy new furniture for this price."

Argument two ensued like so:
I said: "But it is a couch. It is long. You can nap on it. Thing 1 lays on it all the time. These are love seats. And aside from that, I like it."
Brock walked over to some other cushions (cheaper and wrong size) and said: "Why can't we just get these?"
I said: "They aren't the right size."
Brock: "I think they would work."
Me: "I've measured it 8 times. They are too small. I promise."
Brock kept arguing his side (which was wrong). I stuck to my guns (which are always tucked into my bra) which was informed and CORRECT. And so on and so forth.

And we proceeded to argue about fucking furniture cushions in the middle of Home Depot for a good 20 minutes.

Weird how no one entered that section while we were there.

I could see that he was in full on belligerent mode so I said: "Fine, let's just get the cheaper ones." and I let him believe that he won.


We returned home where I was holding the baby and he proceeded in removing the old cushions.
#3 starts now:
Because untying little strings is apparently too difficult, Brock whips out his pocket knife and starts sawing through the strings. I seriously feared that my head was going to detach from my neck with great force. I was all: "OMG! Just untie the freaking strings!"
And he was like: "Aren't you just going to throw them away?" and I was like: "I DON'T KNOW YET!!!" Because, as anyone who has spent any time around me knows, I like to repurpose stuff. I hadn't even thought about the final fate of the Wal-Mart cushions, as only the ONE was tar stained and had a hole in it.....and not the one he was too impatient to untie and attacking with his knife.

So I calmly asked him to put away his knife (baha), gave him the baby and untied the rest of the cushions. It was really hard. It took me a whole 45 seconds.

We then placed the new cushions on the couch and GUESS WHAT??? They were the wrong fucking size, just like I initially stated.
He said in shock: "They are too small. The other ones would be perfect."

I restrained myself from punching him in the throat.

I said sweetly: "I'm going to put the baby down for his nap. Why don't you take these back and get the other ones?"
He said: "Okay."

After freshening up of all my furniture with the black paint (best decision ever), $210 worth of cushions that was our entire grocery allowance for the week, and a few flowers; my patio now looks pretty decent. No husband, roof tar, pets with claws, sticky food, water fowl or children allowed.

Much better.

"This is great! Thanks mom."
Good thing he doesn't SMELL or anything....

Where's my beer?


  1. your husband should learn from this experience. just give up, give in, or go back...

  2. One would think that he had figured that out.

  3. So. Wait. How did you make a story about buying patio cushions so interesting? Let me check again.

    Yep. That's what it was about. Well done. AND---they look fantastic!

  4. Why THANK YOU Tara! They are so much more comfortable too! Just ask the cat...

  5. Ummm....I think I have your beer. Sorry. (as I slowly walk away in shame with my shoulders hunched and.......MY ENTIRE BARE ASS SILENTLY HANGING OUT!)

  6. HAHA I bet next time you can just say "remember the patio cushions" and he will know you are right.

  7. I, too, had an epic argument in Lowe's with my husband- over ceiling fans. Ours went something like this:

    Me: We are not spending that much on a fan that won't fit.

    Him: It will look great, babe, I promise (infamous last words).

    Me: Would you just listen to me?!

    Him: Why should I?

    Me: Cuz it was in our vows - thou shalt always listen to your wife.

    Him: I don't remember that part

    Me: It was in the fine print.

  8. B E A utiful! This story is so familiar...

  9. @Sluice- indeed.
    @Simple Girl- Bahahaha! Glober.
    @Tova- I will!
    @Amber- so glad I'm not the only one. And you are correct about the fine print.
    @Tortoise- Many thanks to you. I look forward to having wine with you soon!

  10. And this is why I go to Lowes alone :)

    Sounds like our husbands graduated from the same school of problem solving: approach everything the most ass backwards way possible! Honestly. Boys.

  11. Very nice looking cushion I need something cool and stylish cushion. Please recommend me some sites. Thanks

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