Whatever happened to…?

Marian Parsonsa slice of life52 Comments

There are some things that I started and didn’t finish.  I’m sure you can relate.  So, I thought I would write a post to tie up some loose ends – things that ended up in my graveyard of good ideas and other things you just may be wondering about!

Whatever happened to…


My trusty sidekick now has a sidekick of her own!


His name is Grayson and you can follow her journey as a new mom on her Instagram and blog.  She’ll still be working for me, but between her new mom status and my moving, it’ll be in a different capacity.  Life changes and time marches on.  I’ll miss having her in the studio with me, though.  She’s gotten to know me so well and she does a great job of keeping me on task and balancing me out.

She knows when I get that blank, overwhelmed look, she needs to sit down with a notebook and a pencil and help me set priorities.

…Sally’s living room makeover?

This is perhaps the biggest blog-ball I have dropped recently.  After completing successful, yet painfully slow, makeovers for Megan and my parents, I took on a third makeover.  The living room in Sally’s farmhouse had so much potential and I was ready to dive in and accept the challenge.

I took before pictures, we talked about what she wanted in the space, I put a design plan together, and we even started shopping for the sofa, which would be the anchor piece of furniture in the room.  And that is where we got stuck.  Sofas that were in her budget, weren’t right and ones that were right, weren’t in her budget.  We’d find a sofa that was perfect and perfectly priced and we would miss out to some other buyer.

After several weeks of this process, I missed my window of availability and I haven’t been able to fit it in since.

Sally has done some work on her own based on my design for the space, but I haven’t been able to help her see it through.  Sadly, since I am moving, it will remain an unfinished project and a lesson learned about overcommitting myself.

…The Mustard Seed Pages?

Remember that?  My own craigslist meets Etsy for people who liked the things I liked?

It was one of those things that was a good idea that I didn’t think through all the way.  Who is going to maintain it?  How do we make sure posts are appropriate and relevant?  How do we remove old posts?  The set-up was glitchy and the idea was perhaps too big for me and my crew at the time.  I had to make the decision to put it on the shelf until I was ready to do it properly.

I do still have hopes of opening it back one of these days.


I did a cross-stitch for one of my HGTV.com tutorials and I was solidly hooked!  I was stitching monograms and little borders on tea towels and sharing patterns on my blog.  And now?  Crickets on the cross-stitch front.  It’s just a matter of having the time.  I hope to pick it up again soon, but when I do have free time, I’ve been working on sketching and watercolors – keeping my creativity on its toes.

…P90x & Whole30?

I’ve run into a few people who started P90x or Whole30 with me and they look great!  It has changed their life and they lost of a ton of weight and I inspired them to take that first step.  I’m always so happy for them, but there is a pang of disappointment in myself.  I inspired them to do it, but I didn’t stick with it.

It’s been a slow slide over the last couple of years, but I’m back to my pre-Whole30 weight and resolved to get working out and eating right back into a prominent slot in my daily routine once we get settled.

The takeaway I cling to, though, is that I did it once and I can do it again.

You can see my Whole30 results HERE and P90x results HERE.


I just shared a picture of him recently, but I get pretty regular e-mails from dog-loving, concerned readers who haven’t seen Sebastian lately.  He’s a fixture of our family now and, even if I don’t mention him or share a picture, he’s here.  He is my little shadow, so he’s usually at my feet when I’m taking pictures these days.

I share more of him in my Instagram stories, so if you need to see him to know that he’s happy and loved, you can follow me/him there.

Is there anything else that fell off the Miss Mustard Seed map that you’ve been wondering about?


Whatever happened to…?

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52 Comments on “Whatever happened to…?”

    1. Good question! I don’t do waxed furniture for Lucketts, because it will melt in the heat! Since most of the furniture I have worked on over the past couple of years have been for Lucketts, I have used Hemp Oil and Tough Coat.

  1. An alternative to mustard seed pages could be your promotion of Etsy/eBay sellers that jive with your aesthetic? Or at least sell ironstone (she says, somewhat self-servingly). I share this without thinking through the details so this also might be too much to manage, but a thought. All the best with this next stage of your journey.

      1. I wondered if Mustard Seed Pages was/were ever coming back. I emailed you about it once, but that was when it first disappeared. As I watched you go through sales and then the talk of moving, it felt as if I’d never see it again. I have been saving lovely things to sell on the Pages, so I’m sad it’s gone away. I don’t understand Kim’s idea. The reason I wanted to use the Mustard Seed Pages was because I didn’t want to have to go through everything it takes to set up ebay or etsy. Although now it looks as if that might be my best alternative. Yours was one of the first blogs I discovered, Marian, and I’ve seen every post you’ve made. I wish we had been closer to each other so that I could partake in Lucketts….it looked so awesome. I’m sure everyone who reads your blog feels as if you’re their neighbor and their friend…. we seem to know you so well through all you have shared. And you know absolutely nothing about us on the other side of the computer screen. Please know that I wish the best for you in all your new endeavors. Surely God is taking you some place wonderful. Bless you all with this move.

        1. Thanks, Patty! I do plan to bring it back and dust it off at some point, but the timing has to be right. 🙂

  2. Was it you who answered a request from a woman who wanted help w/ furniture arrangement in her LR that had a huge picture window, a black leather sofa, and 2 tall black lamps at end of the sofa. I think she was in one of the New England states or Canada.

  3. One thing I’ve been waiting to see what you did with the European grainsack stencil. It probably packed away! Another thing is your stencils, were you doing a tutorial or something? And I sorta remember that a new color of your milk pain’t? Or something along those lines when the petticoat color came out. And your adventure to China. I have sold things on the mustard seed pages and looking forward to its return.

    1. Kelly,
      Unless something has changed, when I spoke to Marians mother at Lucketts she said they wouldn’t be moving.

      1. Kelly. Teresa is correct. We will stay in Gettysburg but hope to get up to visit wherever they end up. It’s sad, we have so enjoyed living near them but this area is great for us so at this time we don’t plan to move.

  4. The one project that you mentioned doing and I was so hoping you would was painting the exterior of your red brick cape. Perhaps the new owners might take that project on.

    BTW….Kriste’s new bundle of joy is so cute! Glad Mother and baby are doing well.

    1. I really, really wanted to paint the outside of the house, but we decided we put too much money into the house already and would leave that undone. We live in a tiny town where there is just not much room for return on home projects, so I had to let that one go.

  5. First of all, I LOVE your “stuff” series! I can’t begin to tell you how helpful this has been. Thank you!! Secondly, thanks for sharing about Sally’s living room. I’d been wondering how that turned out. Lastly, I’ve been curious to know if anyone ever found your golden ticket in the farmhouse white milkpaint?

  6. You are brave to five into the swamp of loose ends, especially unfinished projects. Sometimes it takes starting a project to know whether or not you’ll love it.

    One adventure I was looking forward to hearing more about is your trip to China. I’m especially curious about your meeting with manufacturers, working out what you wanted them to do, and receiving the finished product. … But only if you have time.

    1. I do want to share more on that, but as I replied to another commenter, the comments in response to that project got pretty nasty. I don’t mind disagreement and I don’t expect everyone to cheer me along all the time, but it crossed a line into bullying (in my opinion). I have been hesitant to share more about it for that reason, but I have so many wonderful pictures and stories to share and I will share them when I feel ready to. In a nutshell, I learned so much and I loved the people I worked with.

  7. This isn’t really related to this post, but I have a question. I’m in Camp Hill PA which isn’t all that far from you and there is very little English ironstone available in my area. Which area do you have the most luck finding it? Thank you for your time.

    1. I’ll share some of my favorite places, soon, but you have an awesome antique mall right near you – Antique Marketplace of Lemoyne. It’s one of my favorites!

    2. Susan! I am in the Lycoming County area and there is Ironstone just about everywhere! So much so that I can be choosy about what I buy price wise and style. I won’t pick up a platter or chamber pot unless there is something really unique about it. And the pitchers……that’s another story. So you want to focus on the Lewisburg area, hopefully you can come for a day or two and research the antique stores……….so many to choose from you won’t be able to do them all! Let me know and I’ll be your tour guide!

  8. So happy for Kriste and what a great name! My oldest is Grayson and when I named him 29 years ago, I think I was setting a trend! Everyone wanted to know if it was a family name but no, just a name I had heard and liked. Today he us a new dad. In a blink they are all grown up!

  9. So happy for Kriste. It’s bold to share what you didn’t get finished. You are such a worker bee. Projects are time consuming. Moving is an overwhelming chore and your priority for now. Good luck with each day chipping away at the list.

  10. Whatever happened to the Hotel Petersburg (Va., your grandparent’s town and mine) silver spoon that I sent you several years ago? Thought I might see it in sugar dish or beside a blue and white coffee cup some day.

    Hoping your move goes smoothly and that you will love settling into your new home and have much joy there and with your business successes.

    1. It’s the one “rogue spoon” that we use daily! My boys like it, because it’s a little smaller than our other spoons. I smile every time I use it. Thanks for such a thoughtful gift! 🙂

    1. Yep! We still have it. It’s been at the studio and we will be taking it with us when we move. Jeff would like to use it in his office, if it’ll fit!

  11. Please pass on congratulations to Kristy. I was waiting to hear and felt sure you would post when he was born so it’s good to hear he arrived safely.

    Good luck with the move, you’re so brave packing up the whole house and letting things go before you even know you are moving or, if so, where you’re moving to!

  12. Susan, I have sold some ironstone to Marian, since she is moving I will be selling ironstone at Rebels Roost antique emporium just outside Gettysburg, Rt 30.

  13. I emailed you awhile back to ask if you would let us know some of your favorite places to shop in your area. We in PA and the surrounding areas would still love to know 🙂
    On another note, I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to meet you and to enjoy that furniture workshop you did in October ’15. That vanity is used daily by my 14 year old.
    God’s blessings on this new phase in your and your family’s life.

    1. I remember that vanity! It turned out so great! Yes, I am going to do a post soon (probably a series) of my favorite places to shop and my favorite vendors.

  14. I’ve been wondering how your son has been doing with his diabetes diagnosis. I also have a now grown son with Type I who was diagnosed at age 2. Hope all is well!

    1. Thank you for asking! He really is doing great. I mean, you understand the ups and downs, but he’ll be 9 this summer and is starting to take on more of the management of his care. It’s good for him and us, so he can have more independence for sleepovers, school trips, etc.

      You know that T1D care is a tightrope to walk, so we pray for him and other kids we know with diabetes daily and we pray for a cure.

  15. Curious about the horse back riding you wanted to get back in to – and did I see you were selling your coveted riding boots?

    1. Yes! I did put the riding boots and such in the yard sale. I did one lesson and I really enjoyed it, but I realized I didn’t have time in my life for it right now. It was about a 3-4 hour commitment each lesson. Maybe one day… 🙂

  16. Whatever happened to the comments section on your China deal post? You took a hammering from many of your followers over your China liaisons and poof! the comments all vanished. I was expecting that at some stage you would address this.

    1. Yes, I did take a hammering and some of the comments went beyond just constructive criticism and disagreement. In my opinion, they crossed a line and I did what I have never, ever done before and I turned off the comments on that post. I have more to share about the trip, but I have understandably been reluctant to write about it.

      I’ll share all about it at some point…when I’m ready.

  17. Marian,

    Yes, I’m only minutes away from the Antique Marketplace in Lemoyne and it is a favorite, but ironstone is very rare there.

    Thank you for replying.

  18. Design ramblings? I guess it’s a bit of a moot point since now you’re moving, so Kriste will not be co-located with you, but I so enjoyed your dynamic and the topics you picked to discuss. Any chance for a future podcast endeavor?

    1. Yeah, Kriste and I have talked about Design Ramblings and how we probably gave up on it too soon. Since I am moving, it’s not something we’ll be doing, but I do like the idea of testing out different outlets, like videos and podcasts. Not sure where that will go, yet, but maybe…

  19. Marion, stick with the sensible eating/weight loss thing. I let 50 pounds creep up on me during my life (30 years). At 50 it was hard, but not impossible…i just loved cooking, eating and too busy with everything else to prioritize it. At 51 I had a major stroke. After that all my friends and their husbands got busy and lost weight. I’ve lost 20 pounds very slowly but struggle with the rest of the weight. Take it so seriously and there will be so many blessings for you and your family because of the focus on better things.

  20. You are a tough cookie. I was shocked at how people attacked you over a choice that was yours and yours alone to make. I think I would have walked away and never looked back. You sure do open yourself up to the self righteous when you enter the world of social media. Kudos to you for handling with dignity and grace and thank you for sharing your time and talent.

  21. Marian, you are an inspiration to me. I love all of the things you and do and the tips you provide. When you spoke about Hemp Oil renewing leather I started thinking about things I could try Hemp Oil on and I found a few of things worth sharing. I have a marble top vanity that was damaged by chemicals used to clean a brass sink so I tried it there and it looks brand new! I also cleaned the brass sink and rubbed the Hemp Oil in the basin, which provided a coating that prevents the water from turning the bass dark! I have a wrought iron bakers rack on my screened porch that over the years the iron has faded to an ugly gray. I rubbed Hemp Oil on it and it looks brand new. Thank you for your inspiration and ideas.

  22. Oh Marian,
    I finally found you again! When I got a new email address 6 months ago, i guess I unsubscribed on my old one and did not sign up for the right one for you. I have only been getting the milk paint emails which are not nearly as often as this one. I recently wrote, ” Where is Marian and what have you done with her?” I have sorely missed hearing about your family and the move,your wonderful decorating ideas and well everything. I am so glad to be back on the right website! I’ll have to go back and read many old posts to catch up on your move etc. I wish you all the best of luck and so look forward to hearing and watching the new move and house and everything.

  23. Hi Marian, its a shame that you weren’t able to share your experiences about China I completely missed that blog! There will always be people who think they know best about what you should be doing with your life, but I have found that as long as you aren’t hurting anyone or any thing then you do what is best for you, your family and of course the environment! When you get an opportunity you might want to go back to that conversation and not be bullied into not sharing your experiences. Bullies work on the premise divide and rule..dont let the Bullies rule, you can just delete them! Best wishes to Kristie and Grayson and to you and your family your next adventure! xxx

  24. Wasn’t Jeff going to start a blog a long while back? I kinda know the answer…but I laugh because you are so similar to me…always coming up with great ideas, some happen some don’t. Just the way we roll. God has the perfect place for your family-church, home, acreage…it’ll happen;)

  25. Ha, yes, he was!! We both really liked the idea of that and he even worked in an official capacity for Mustard Seed Interiors for a while, but it wasn’t his passion. We knew that going into it, but it was the time between youth ministry and figuring out what to do next. That time convinced him that he needed to go back to school for his Master’s degree. Everything plays into who we are, even things that don’t happen! 🙂

  26. Did you and your mom get a chance to reconstruct those cup crochet cozies? I tried to learn crochet to “figure it out” and it was a disaster! I don’t think it was a good project for someone who doesn’t know a lick about crochet!
    I’m so excited for your new adventure and can’t wait to hear about it!

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