2519 posts

Marian Parsonsmy business story, Running a Business88 Comments

I just happened to notice on my dashboard that I have published 2519 posts.  This will be number 2520.

We’ve been through a lot together…

I’ve written those posts on four different computers.

I’ve taken pictures with three different Nikon cameras.


I’ve moved from my kitchen counter to my basement to a studio.

Hundreds of pieces of furniture have been painted, slipcovered, and/or upholstered.

(Remember that one?)

I’ve learned how to edit photos and shoot in manual mode.

After those 2519 blog posts, over 200 freelance articles, and two books, I’m finally acknowledging the fact that I might be a writer.

I’ve gone from selling out of a small consignment shop in Gettysburg to selling in my dream antiques store (Lucketts) to selling my own brand of milk paint around the world.

I’ve lost and gained weight.  (And lost it again and gained it again.)

My hair has been light blonde, dark blonde, brown, and reddish.  Not to mention short, bobbed, curly, and straight.

I’ve painted every room in our home.  Some so many times I’m sure we’ve lost square footage.

I have bought and sold four dining sets.

With all of the changes, my love of blue and white and ironstone has been a constant.

My first post was published just days after my youngest son turned one.  My other son was 2 1/2.  They are now 8 and 10.

We went through a diabetes diagnosis and the death of my Opa.

I’ve traveled to California, Colorado, Montana, Massachusetts, Alabama, and Canada, to name a few.

I’ve gone from being a one-woman-show to having six part-time employees.

I’ve experienced victories and failures.  I’ve learned from both.

I’ve started things I haven’t finished.  I have finished things that weren’t worth starting.

At times, it’s my dream job.  Other times, I have to slog my way through.

I’ve taken over 30,000 pictures, received over 150,000 comments, and I have no idea how many e-mails have passed through my inbox.

And this blog has received almost 50,000,000 page views since I started keeping track.

It’s still pretty amazing to me when I look back over everything that has come from that on-the-spot decision to start a blog.

And I sort of wonder how I’ve had so much to say!

But, then again, I’ve always been chatty…

2520 is now in the books.

2519 posts

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88 Comments on “2519 posts”

  1. You have also inspired hundreds (thousands?) of people from all around the world. This girl from New Zealand has slip-covered her lounge suite, painted numerous things and is currently procrastinating dark waxing and unholstering the second chair in a dining suite. Only 4 to go after that! All thanks to the encouragement and inspiration from your blog. I think we would all be amazed at how many pieces, in how many countries, have been wonderfully updated and restored thanks to you! Keep up the great work!

  2. Well said, Ruth! As I look around my own home, there are numerous items that were inspired by you. I also have opened two antiques booths in the last six months. I am not aiming to be the next MMS, but I now have a creative outlet that adds to my daily joy. Thank you for the confidence and inspiration your posts and tutorials give!

    Oh, and I saw you at the Chapel Market in Alabama, but I was too intimidated to say anything. I hope you come again. (:

  3. I may not post often , but I read your blog daily and follow your life, I am hoping to meet you this year at Lucketts,,…. You are an inspiration to many ,, our homes and hearts have been transformed,, Thank You !!
    Post # 2520.. 🙂

  4. Joan Larae in Flowery Branch

    You took your “first step” with no idea where it was leading in the “long run”. Your talents and your communication have inspired me along the way. Jerimiah 29:11 is for all of us. Success comes in many forms and circumstances. You are a blessing in where you have been positioned. God bless you in all you do.

  5. Marian, Congratulations on all these fun accomplishments over the years. I have had a bazillion cups of morning coffee with you and even today am celebrating with you from San Diego! You have been an encouragement to me in my life. PResently, I am painting my Grandma’s dining room chairs A lovely shade of blue largely because I have remembered your gumption and have decided to make them work one more time. Thank you Marian for spurring us all on!

  6. Marian, Congratulations on all these fun accomplishments over the years. I have had a bazillion cups of morning coffee with you and even today am celebrating with you from San Diego! You have been an encouragement to me in my life. I am painting my Grandma’s dining room chairs A lovely shade of blue largely because I have remembered your gumption and have decided to make them work one more time. Thank you Marian for spurring us all on!

  7. Congratulations! It makes me wonder how many I have read? I’ve been reading for most of those years. You’ve inspired me to do so much in my house and actually to start my own blog. Thanks for showing there is a way to live without a glass ceiling…when you don’t perceive a ceiling at all. You’ve show first hand that the only thing limiting anyone is themselves. You are an inspiration.


  8. Thank you for all the inspiration Miss Mustard Seed! Please continue both dreaming and ‘slogging’!

  9. Marian,
    Congrats on all you do so well. You have inspired me to create in my own home what feels like me. I have painted furniture and will paint more. I sew and collect and have a spiritual faith. I read you everyday, or catch up when I have missed a day.
    I was so excited to meet you in Sun Prairie WI and bring my wife along for the painting demonstration. She was able to step into a new experience and enjoy it.
    You have that gift of welcoming people in and making them comfortable.
    Thank you

  10. You are the REAL DEAL. Gotta love that “losing square footage from changing paint colors” comment! I’ll have to borrow it myself. 🙂

  11. Congratulations and thank you! You are an inspiration and a joy to read. Your realism has always drawn me in and your creativity boggles my mind. You should be very proud of your accomplishments. Awesomeness!

  12. It’s a good thing to be chatty. Congratulations on everything you have accomplished over the years. You have been such an inspiration for me and many others. I’m finally ready to paint my hutch and I’m thinking of trying my hand at making a slip cover all because you decided to start a blog. Thank you for sharing your talent.

  13. Hi,
    I rarely comment, but I read your blog everyday during my lunch break, for about 5 years now? I look forward to grabbing my salad out of the office fridge and logging on to see what you are up to and escape my job. You help keep that creative part of my brain active!
    I live in Northern VA and hope to get up to one of your paint workshops one of these days.
    Thank you and keep up the great work 🙂

  14. I echo what everyone else above me has said – thank you for the continued inspiration! I’ve been lucky enough hear you speak in person and meet you (twice!) and am amazed by your genuine niceness and willingness to share and help others grow. You and your blog are a part of the daily routine of so many readers – myself included – and we thank you for sharing your style and humor and talent with us!

  15. you helped me to find me in the styles and things you have shared and show.. ….what I was always looking for, and now I amazing it for a while. Thank you more than you know. I am older and have learned so many things from you, and ventured to things I did not know about. You are precious.

  16. I don’t know what happened above, …..what I was always looking for and now I am keeping it for a while…….sorry

  17. Congratulations! You are such as inspiration to myself and to so many other people. You are outrageously talented and creative!

    Wishing you another successful/amazing 2,520 posts!

  18. I live in Oklahoma,and i very seldom say anything but, i love this blogg and you have truly been a help to this sr. citizen. Congratulations and i am looking forward to the next adventure with you.

  19. I love your blog and you have given me the courage to do some upholstery work. Congrats!!!! Please continue with educating us all.
    Thanks for what you do!

  20. Marian, you prove hard work and dedication is ALL that really works in this world. Oh, and prayers – lots of them.

    Congratulations. You are an inspiration

  21. You are nothing short of amazing! I have been following you for years now and you have made me laugh, cry and I would say you inspired my love of ironstone. I remember seeing it on blogs and in magazines and always appreciating their beauty and the fact that they have made it through so much history and years of use and managed to survive. So when I first came across your blog I felt an instant connection. I also received lots of tips and a crash course in Ironstone 101 lol Keep doing what you’re doing as long as it makes you happy 🙂 Congrats!

  22. I wish there was a way to count how many bloggers there are who were inspired to hit ‘publish’ because of you! You can count me as one of many!

  23. You are a good fiend who drops by each day just after lunch. Thank you for sharing your busy, creative life.

  24. I do try to keep up with you but I know I’ve missed a few posts! One thing I want to remind you of is that through the goodness of your heart and soul you sent me a jar or German glitter glass after I spoke of losing our home to fire in Jan 2014 and I so enjoyed your tutorial on creating ornaments from the glitter. Thank you so much. Some day I too hope to come to Lucketts if ever I get myself to D.C. Thanks for all your inspiration. It does help to keep me motivated to doing something! Blessings to you in your journey of 2520 more posts!!

  25. Of course you are a writer, and a talented one at that. I’m a relatively recent subscriber. It was my good fortune to stumble on your blog. Your talent, compassion, humor and work ethic come through every time.

  26. You are the best, you are amazing, you are inspirational, you are humble and you are truthful….you are stardust ! You are forever my very favorite blogger !!! Congratulations on a job superbly done time after time……….

  27. You are so loved! A bright spot in our days. You are amazing, inspiring and always trying new ideas that keep it fresh. I’m so grateful there are young girls like you who express wonderful qualities. God, family, home. I love it! Truely, I hope you realize what a special gift you give to us all.

  28. Thank you Marian for all the posts filled with inspiring photos and helpful information. I have followed your lead and painted pieces I never dreamed of touching before. I’ve stenciled drawer fronts on some, delved into the world of using dark wax (a first ), and ripped out the carpet in our living , dining and foyer to expose our lovely old hardwood floors! This English country cottage I live in is finally taking on the country cottage look inside I craved for years. Even my living room is evolving into blue and cream! I love it! Keep the posts coming!

  29. Not sure exactly how I discovered you but I think it was somehow related to our shared love of blue/white and ironstone china, which I’ve been collecting for many years. I began following you about a year ago and recently started my own blog thanks to your inspiration. I know I have a long way to go but I am learning a lot and having so much fun with it. Thank you for all you have taught me and for the continued inspiration!

  30. From reading your blog to painting furniture to selling milk paint to distributing it throughout Europe to starting a new chapter in a new country and you know what … Reading your blog is still the first thing I do in the morning. It keeps inspiring me. Thank you for all those years, I’ll be reading again tomorrow.

  31. My dear friend Marian,
    Congratulations! I loved this list. It made me smile. As do you! Your wit, your love for “job”, your knowledge of what you write about…yet your willingness to learn more, your love to share what you have found and know, your entrepreneurship, your love for family, friends and your God, your humor, and your hair. All make this a great blog AND you a wonderful friend. Thanks for sharing yourself.

  32. Congratulations….each day I look forward to your latest blog! I’m always inspired by your ideas…..and computer,region f projects! You are remarkable! You I introduced me to chalk and milk paint!nngotta love this!

  33. You have and continue to be an inspiration, a designer extraordinaire, a leader in DIY, and you have furniture companies, magazines and the like turning to you for new trends and ideas!!!

    All the while being a regular gal (I mean that as a pure compliment), a wife , mother and one of us…the REAL people!!

    All I can say is Thank You, and please keep challenging the world!!

  34. Marian. You are an amazing writer . Look at how many people you have touched thru the wriiten words of your blog, most of the people you have never even met. Yet we all feel a kindred spirit connection with you. Thank you for sharing all of you, faults and all. That’s what makes you so relatable and endearing. Please keep up your inspiring work.

  35. I like your blog, I admire your work, I love your attitude.
    You’ve made me move my mountains.
    I will watch your walk through another 2520. I hope 🙂

  36. Congratulations! I can’t remember when or how I found your blog, except it was when you had curly hair! And then one day you appeared on the local news, I said, “I know who she is, I didn’t know SHE was from Biglerville!” You taught me everything about ironstone! And your new blog layout let’s me go back and read your older posts. Looking forward to your future post # 5000! and everyone till then.

  37. I love being a member of this “club” of admirers of you, Marian! It definitely elevates my life to read about your adventures and successes. Bravo!

  38. And still growing strong, l enjoy your blog everyday, love the painted picture pieces, i had done one years ago, but now where near as beautiful as yours. i have been a subscriber of country living for years, so i enjoyed seeing your home in there magazine also, thanks for showing us all your hard work.

  39. I was seeking out milk paint tutorials in particular and your basement video’s showed up. That’s how I stumbled upon your blog and have been captivated ever since 🙂 I think you’ve held my interest for so long because you physically change pieces rather than just style and photograph them. You show us the detail in your work and then write fabulous posts to go with them. You provide beautiful articles to us readers every day for free. Your blog really is above and beyond most of the others out there. Thank you for all the enjoyment and inspiration you’ve provided me. You’re a rockstar!

  40. I too, was seeking inspiration for my home and wondering about milk paint.
    Then, Marian’s video popped up ……..I’ve been reading her blog, ever since.
    Thank you for showing us the way ~ to love our homes and take a chance,
    to learn, fail and to succeed. And, not be so hard on ourselves ~
    All of us have been enjoying the ride 🙂

  41. God is definitely with you!! You are a great writer, artist, painter, inspirational to those around you and you keep surprising us and yourself on what you can do! Keep it up and always love what you do!! Thank you!

  42. Hello Marian,

    I just recently began following you and have found our taste and styles extremely similar. Even the way you communicate through your writings reads like I would think and say. I have even found that I have created pieces similar to what you have created…I just decoupaged a child’s dresser this past weekend and now see that you did likewise (long before me) with the sheet music, which is beautiful!! Getting to know you and your business has been a delight. I began the Miss Mustard Seed introduction as I researched your milk paints and supporting products. I adore your paints!!!!!! They are so amazing and I find it a joy to paint furniture with them! And don’t even get me started on my love for the hemp oil! 🙂 My friend and I are hoping to travel from Ohio to the Luckett’s Vintage Market in May. May God continue to bless your business Marian.

    ~found our haven~

  43. 2520 is a winner – I found myself getting all sentimental over it. ;0) I met you in Monument, CO several years ago and you are just as warm and real in person as you are in your blog . Here’s to another 2520!
    ps. I like the new format. Very clean and clear. Good Job Marian !

  44. I’ve read your blog every day for years! I met you at Lucketts and it was surreal…like seeing a celebrity that you feel like you “know”, but of course you don’t. One of the things that I like about you is that even with sponsored posts, HGTV videos, freebies from your sponsors…you are still the down-to-earth Marian that we can relate to. You’ve kept your ego in check. You have inspired me to make changes in my home, to paint two pieces of furniture, and to tough-coat an antique door covered with chippy paint. I love that you love and appreciate antiques in a world where trendy can overtake design blogs. Thank you for a wonderful blog!

  45. Congratulations & a big thank you for all that you have contributed to your blog & especially to us. You’ve picked up some of the most beautiful junk & turned them into treasures. You are inspiring me to paint with milk paint. And I’m visually garbage picking. Thanks so much again! Hugs ~ Karen

  46. I can’t remember how I found your blog, but I was really thrilled about you and all you do and share with us. I’ve read a lot of the comments above and agree with them all. It’s been fascinating watching you grow in so many areas. I admire you for sharing your love for Christ and appreciate your value of family. Your blog is definitely a highlight in each day. You inspire me constantly and it makes me want to try more projects. Blessings on you and yours!

  47. Congratulations and thank you for writing. You have been the reason for many changes and collections in my home, although upholstery is not one of them. I know where to draw the line. lol Marian, I don’t know what I will do when you retire, you are such a part of my morning routine. I hope that day doesn’t come for a looong time.

  48. You are so beloved by so many throughout the world. Your charm, wit, talent and humbleness are so evident in everything you do. I had the good fortune to meet you while you were recently in Memphis and Germantown. You are just as lovely in person as you appear in your blog. Big bonus — I got to purchase the dresser you painted in the workshop. ❤❤ Thank you for your daily inspiration. You are a treasure.

  49. I have been following you for about 3 months and also can join the choir in saying we all look forward to your blog posts each day with a giggle smile and New knowledge all provided by You.
    Thank You.

  50. You were one of the first DIY upcycler type bloggers I ever read.
    I now own my own shabby upholstery business, dabbling in other things like dissolved lace mirrors, pillows of all kinds and many more things in the plans.
    And, now we are producing a huge Vintage Market locally.
    I have a long ways to go. Terrible at pictures, and even worse with website tech stuff. But soon, we can afford to hire out some of that stuff.
    This last year has been quite a ride!

  51. Marian, you are truly a precious “gift” to us all. You are such a special gal!

    Thanks for every post you bring to us.

    Bless you!

  52. Wow, wow, WOW! Congratulations on all the months and years of stick-to-it-ness! You and your business are indeed a success, plus, to those of us who follow you, you are a real, humble and easy-to-relate-to person. Sort of the girlfriend down the block. And that is a major part of the success of all you do, I think. Of course, I think it is grossly unfair that you have SO MUCH ENERGY and I have so little, comparatively!!
    I could never accomplish all you do in the time you do it, but that’s okay. I admire you and cheer you on in everything you do and feel so lucky that I found your blog which never ceases to be interesting and inspiring to me.

    I wish you continued success and many blessings of health and happiness for you and your family, Marian.
    As they say: You rock, girl!

  53. Yes Miss Marian, fellow Birthday Sister I’ve been reading your blog almost since the beginning and I must say you are definitely getting much better at everything including your healthy eating, your hair, you look younger than when you started (how did that happen?) and in addition to upholstering, painting furniture, blogging, photography you are now painting portraits. Where are you getting all this energy? I want to eat whatever you’re eating. The best part is you have remained such a down to earth nice person from the very beginning. The enormous success you have could not have happened to a nicer person. I hope to see you at Lucketts again this year with my daughter Naella. Nancy from NH

  54. You forgot to mention that you bring joy and inspiration to many thousands, me included. I’m slipcovering my furniture and planning to do some painting as soon as the warm weather holds. Happily. Thanks for being you!

  55. I can’t say much more than to echo everyone else’s accolades and say that you are glorifying God in everything you do:)

  56. I’m a late comer to your ‘show’, and kudos to you for following your passion. I’m on the ‘retired’ side of life, but I still enjoy your enthusiasm and thoughtful post/projects. Enjoy!
    Thanks, for all your creative energy! Sandi

  57. You are amazing! Keep up the great work. I haven’t painted or upholstered anything yet, but keep looking at your blog for inspiration.

  58. Oh my, I’ve been a long time follower and remember the first time I came across your blog. I was gobsmacked. Amazing Tutorials! And free? I’ve tried slipcovering and painting furniture everyone told me it was sinful to paint, because of those tutorials.
    I was amazed and astounded at the talent offered up with honesty and generosity. Thanks be to God for you.
    Following Miss Mustard Seed, meant I got to know you through your stories of family; your generous,hard working, CraigsList furniture retriever dad and Mom, your much loved Opa, StarWars loving son, plus the scary diabetes diagnosis, weight challenges
    ( I am still on your Facebook accountable group!), Sebastian the canine that fell from heaven into your lap just for the asking, your crafty hubby Jeff (his patience and trust amazes me— my husband rolls his eyes when I suggest changing anything), friendly youth group kids from your church and of course your bespectacled partner in crime (of linen burrito fame).
    With each post I saw new things, learned new things, and cheered you on as you became more confident, successful and a major force to be reckoned with.
    It has been a pleasure to peek in on your journey and a joy to have learned so much from your capable hands.
    I have received so much from someone I’ve never actually met, it all seems just a bit lopsided. You never ask anything from me or your faithful readers and continue to share yourself, your talent, your faith and your family. It almost feels a bit like stalking!
    I will never make it to Haven or Lucketts, but following your blog means I can watch your videos and almost feel like I am there, hob
    Knobbing and rubbing elbows with the lucky ones. Your online shop helps with those who want a piece of the pie but aren’t well heeled travelers.
    However, I will continue to follow, keep learning from your creative mind, and bask in the glory of your talents as long as you have the energy to keep on keeping on.

  59. I first fell in love with the sheet music dresser/commode and did one of my own which you were so kind to help me thru by answering my questions. I think I fell in love with you then too! So warm and helpful and inspirational. Still my all time favorite blog. Thank you and congratulations and continued success!

  60. Marion, I’m not typically a commenter, but I just want you to know you’ve inspired me in many, many ways. Yours has always been one of my favorite blogs to come back to again and again. Hats off to you for following your passion and sharing your talents! Thank you!

  61. See why I’m not much of a commenter?! I didn’t even spell your name right! :- I am so sorry, Marian dear! 🙂

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