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{right back where I started}


This phrase is usually about something negative.  Oh, like…I lost 35 lbs, but now I’m right back where I started.  Not that I have any idea at all what that feels like.  But in this case, it’s a great thing.

 Many of you ask how I do all of the things I do.  When I sleep.  Is my energy for sale.  Am I bionic.  (I’m double-jointed, but I’m not sure that does anything for me other than making my thumb bend back at an angle that grosses people out.)  I wrote a post answering that question a while ago, but since then I have taken on even more and despite my boys in preschool and bringing in babysitters to help out, I’m still struggling to keep up with everything.  AND I have more exciting things around the corner, so the time came to reassess things.  What can I give up?  My blog?  Nope.  My freelance writing?  No way.  Lucketts?  Absolutely not.  Sleep?  I don’t think that will work too well.  People get pretty crazy when they are sleep deprived.  I like everything that’s on my plate right now and there’s nothing I want to drop.  So, I had to look at what I could scale back.  I talked to Karen, my friend and fellow vendor at Lucketts, about it and she came up with a great solution.  I could switch spaces at Lucketts with Jane, the woman who currently sells her grogeous stuff out of an alcove in Karen’s room.  Jane wanted more space and I needed less.  It’s a win-win.



I first came to Lucketts through Karen, selling furniture out of her room.

 I then moved to a pavillion…

…and at last to the third floor.


Now I’m moving back where I started.  It’s a little bitter-sweet, because I love my room on the third floor.  It has great light and I just painted it and it is so spacious.  I did have to carry everything up three flights of steps, though, which was tolerable, but the real issue was that I was having trouble keeping that big space filled.  It seemed like it was almost empty every week and the pace was just too fast.  I want time to work on my own house and other projects without being a slave to my space.  I had no desire to leave Lucketts, so downsizing was the best option.  We’ll be making the switch soon, so I’ll let you know where to find me.  Until then, you’ll still have to make the trek up the stairs to the third floor. (It’s totally worth it, though!)

Before I end this post, I want to share a few new features on my blog.  As you’re reading a post, you may notice an arrow on the middle right of the page.  If you’re reading an older post, there is an arrow on both sides.  You can click these arrows to move to older and newer posts.  Nice, right?  We also installed a translation widget, for those who have been leaving me comments in French and other languages.  Of course, if you don’t speak English, you won’t understand this unless you find and click the translation button, so this announcement is a little silly.  I realize some buttons are still not working properly and the site looks strange on some cell phones and we’re working on all of that.  Thanks so much for the feedback and hopefully everything will be settled soon.

Since I worked at the Lucketts Holiday Open House all day yesterday, I chilled in my jammies until about 1:00 today.  It took me that long to catch up on my e-mail.  I have a sinus infection (I think) that has been giving me terrible headaches, but I still got some cleaning done and started working on a hand painted sign for my kitchen.  Some of you have been begging for a sheet music wreath tutorial (as well as one for the mini wreath ornaments and the tree toppers), so I will try to get those to you this week.  I also found a fabulous chippy side table for my family room at Lucketts yesterday and I can’t wait to show it off.

Lots of fun stuff going on.  Stay tuned…

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  1. Good luck in your new space and hopefully the change gives you the space YOU need to thrive!


  2. You are wise beyond your years. It’s hard to know where to draw the line sometimes. I had a decorative painting business ( and a part-time job ) for a number of years and found it hard to please everybody. I finally came to my senses when my customers wanted special orders after my annual sales. I just told them that if I said “yes” to them I would have to say “no” to my family and they were very understanding. I found my “happy” place and it seems you have, too. Best of luck!

  3. EllaY says:

    First, thank goodness you’re not stopping blogging! I check your blog every day (sometimes multiple times a day), and you have one of the best blogs out there! I think it’s sweet that you answer so many of the comments, but I know that we would understand if you had to cut back on that, too!

    Also, your space in Lucketts is incredible (I live in Northern VA and get to visit pretty often!), but it’s a big space. It seems like a delicate balance vendors there have to strike-some stuff their rooms full of stuff that sits there while other rooms feel a bit empty. I can see it feeling stressful to keep it looking full enough and staged, too. Good for you for taking a step back and for re-evaluating where you’d like to spend your energy.

    Can’t wait to see what you do with that reclaimed energy!

  4. It is really good that you are showing other women that it is “OK”, to cut back a little or scale down. Hope you feel better soon. I always love a quiet Sunday to renew my energy.

  5. I’m looking forward to the tutorials this week. I have sheet music that is calling (or is that singing) out to me to give it new life in either a wreath or ornament. A few sheets have already been earmarked for a special project, but I’m hoping to get new ideas from your tutes.

  6. Marian,

    I think you inspire me more and more each day. It’s not just your creativity that inspires me but your truthfulness and your “real life” appeal. Thank you for this post. It’ makes me feel like it’s “ok” to be a small vendor in such a big big world. It also makes me realize that as a mother, wife and antique dealer there has to be a balance. Finding it is what is hard. I relate to this post so much. I had to leave a comment. I have said this before and I will say it again–YOU ROCK!

  7. Isn’t it funny how things have a tendency to come full circle? Even the world comes full circle, so it’s definitely a good thing with this change your making for yourself and your family. I certainly hope your sinus infection improves quickly cuz those ain’t no fun. :^( But, if you can get it out of the way now, then maybe you’ll be more immune to them before the holidays and not have to deal with one then. Hope you did well with your open house at Lucketts too!

  8. Lee Shanes says:

    I’ll add my comment to all those who’ve gone before. Until a year ago, I was part owner of an antique mall outside Richmond, and waking or sleeping, I became a slave to the shop. Now, as a part-time antique dealer in a rented booth, I have more time to spend with my g’kids, more time w/my sweet [partially-retired] husband and time to generally love life. Not to mention more time to find treasures! It was a tough decision, but I’m happier than I’ve ever been. You are a smart woman to arrive at this decision now — you won’t regret it. Love, love, love your blog. Thanks for your generosity to us all.

    And as for the sinus problem, I’ve taken herbs for years and find that fenugreek and thyme (comes in capsules) helps a lot. I take it with hot apple cider and it helps keep my energy up. Good luck! Love, Lee.

  9. Sounds like you came up with a good solution for your overload! It is tough too keep all the irons going in a fire! So I hope this all works out for you!

  10. Tracey says:

    Congrats on the new space~hopefully it will give you more free time to relax, and who couldn’t use that!! I have a totally unrelated question, though. I just bought some ASCP, and I was wondering if you could tell me if you use the wax when you stain the top of a piece of furniture and paint the bottom. Do you wax the stained portion, too? Does the wax work over stain? Thanks so much!

    • Hey Tracy, I know I’m not Marian but the answer is yes, and yes! :)

      • Miss Mustard Seed says:

        Tracey, yes, Brandi is right. I love using wax on wood. It gives it a gorgeous hand-rubbed luster that is the total opposite of a factory finish.

  11. I’m looking forward to all the fun that we’ll have being roomies again!!!
    I hope you feel better soon!

  12. I love the feature of the arrows in the middle of your blog! I noticed the arrow on the left actually moves you forward or to a more recent post and the arrow on the right moves you backward…or to a previous post. Are they supposed to be that way?


  13. Tracey says:

    Thanks, Brandi! I appreciate the advice!

  14. I love how open and honest you are. It is difficult to find the time to do everything we want. We cannot do it all and somethings have to go. Thanks for sharing your wisdom.


  15. Great post Marian! Great honesty :) The perfectionism in us wants to ‘do it all’ but the reality… oh boy :)
    I’ve hired my sisters to clean / babysit 2x a week and it is AWESOME! It can be so tricky to figure out how and where to grow without sacrificing things that are most important. I don’t worry about having the perfectly balanced day but I am constantly analyzing if my week/month/year were in balance with my priorities.

  16. I had to Laugh out Loud at your comment about your double jointed thumbs that freaks people out!!! I too have thumbs that are double jointed! My husband said I was asleep one night and he noticed my thumb was stuck on my PJ’s and was bent back at an odd angle! He totally thought I had broken it somehow during the night…Silly boy! My thumbs have always been like that, and although I never really thought anything was wrong with them, he had to point it out to me how weird they were, and now I have a complex!! I am so happy that someone else has the same am no longer alone with my weird thumbs!!
    Thanx for sharing!

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