I have less than a week to come up with a fabulous Thanksgiving tablescape and decor. I just reposted what I did last year, hoping to inspire someone out there in blogland, but also hoping to inspire myself. Just yesterday I was telling my friend Betsy that I needed Creative Defibrillator paddles to shock me into action. I was creatively flat-lining over here.
Then on the way out of my neighborhood to run some errands, something on a side street caught my eye…
I made a quick U-turn and found these guys.
They were trimming these beautiful Liquid Ambers. Big branches with gorgeous leaves all over them. The trimmed pieces looked like little saplings themselves. I asked them if I could have some of the trimmings.
They thought I was a little strange. They must have initially thought that I wanted just a thin branch or two that had some pretty leaves on them, but I started grabbing 8′ branches and shoving them into the back of the Suburban. They offered to help me. I said OK and let them put a few bigger pieces in. We filled it up and I drove the few blocks back home.
This was my first load.
I unloaded my branches, then decided I wanted more.When I came back for my second load, all of the guys were on their lunch break, kicking back and resting. They were gentlemen and extremely polite. A few of them got up and offered to help me some more. I waved them off, thanking them and telling them that I could manage just fine. They sat back down and resumed their lunch and conversation. I overheard the word “loco” a time or two.
You know what? I’m totally OK with that. I’d even answer to Crazy Stick Lady, because I got two more loads that looked just like this…
Yep. I drove through my neighborhood like this. (With personalized plates on my car, too!)
But is was worth it. Look at my haul!
Times are tough. Money’s tight. I’m hosting Thanksgiving dinner for 20 people next week and wanted to do something fabulous. All of these free branches and leaves will allow me to create something amazing.
Here’s a shot of the patio which (I hope) will be transformed next week. Stay tuned for more.
|Please take note of the dog who has to be in the middle of the action. Always.|
I see it in my head and it looks pretty cool… I’m hopeful I can execute it next week.
In the meantime, 5 tips on how I end up getting cool things for free:
- Be prepared to drop what you’re doing and take advantage of opportunities as they come up.
- Recognize opportunity. Look at everything with an eye towards how you could use something or what you could do to it.
- Don’t be afraid to ask if you can have something. If it looks like someone is about to chuck something, just ask if you can take it off their hands. Don’t be scared.
- Don’t worry about what other people are thinking. This is soooo important! You’re never going to see these people again. (OK, in my case I very well might, but I don’t care.) Worrying about what someone else is thinking can make you feel self-conscious or inhibited… two things that never help the creative process.
- Frequency builds confidence. The more items I pick up and actually do something cool with, the more emboldened I become to get another one.
I am so thankful for sticks.
I’m looking forward to seeing what you come up with, Crazy Stick Lady! Actually, pretty much everyone I really like is at least a little bit loco. Wouldn’t life be boring without that?
The Answer Is Chocolate says
I cannot wait to see what you come up with. No question it will be fabulous. I am just such a wimp at asking if I can have stuff, but I’m going to keep pulling up my big girl pants and keep trying.
At The Picket Fence says
You rock Viv! Don’t “DIY” and “loco” kinda go hand in hand? 🙂 Love what you are doing so far and can’t wait to see the rest!
My Lawd, you crack me up!!!
Hooray for free things! Looking forward to seeing how you work with them.
LOL!! Great find! I am so known for asking for weird stuff and loving castoffs/junk that now I have a reputation and friends will even bring stuff to me that they think I will like. I’ve had people show up for parties with furniture they found on the side of the road while driving over and figured I would like it! Can’t wait to see what you do with your beautiful leaves!
~ Laura says
Geesh, no wonder it’s so hard to see Fall colors around here, people are cutting it off!!! lol!!
I’m so glad that you have rescued some of it and will use it to create Thanksgiving loveliness that we can enjoy!! 🙂
You are so inspiring…to pull over and get guys to load your car with branches is awesome!!! 🙂
First I thought you had lost your mind, then I saw it on your patio and I LOVE it!
Good Time Charlie says
Oh I can picture it already, it will be GORGEOUS! I, for the first time in 15 years, am not the one cooking dinner. (i hope it still tastes good). I have NO problem asking people for free stuff. Yes, I get the crazy look too, but oh the goodies I have found. Happy Thanksgiving!
#6. Always have a spare pair of clippers in your car. (Foliage pruners not nail trimmers!)
Kim @ Sand and Sisal says
LOL! You crack me up! Living with all the LOCO looks is what I call an occupational hazard being a blogger. Great find!
Becca @ R We There Yet Mom? says
I love this story you LOCO lady you!!!!
But I can’t wait to see how it all comes out!!