Monday, May 04, 2009

{the fun is in the hunt}

Ever since I knew we were moving into the new house, I was on the search for a new buffet/credenza/sideboard-ish piece for the dining room. The one we have now was a $50 cheapo office credenza from Office Depot and we've been over it since the day Dan put it together. But, it has served us well and been a good home for Dan's LP's and my scrapbook supply madness overflow etc. Here it is in all its glory...

A few weeks ago my lovely Mother-in-Law mentioned that she saw a really cool 60's Danish modern-esque piece at a local antique shop that she thought I would love. Little did she know that I had been looking for a piece exactly like that on ebay and craigslist and anywhere else I could think of. She found it on a marathon antiquing day, when she hit up every antique shop in a 45 mile radius. She was pretty sure that she had spotted it at a particular antique mall in a neighboring town, so one Saturday a few weeks ago we took a trip over there. The boys stayed with Dan which was a good idea since this place is so crammed full you could break a vase just by breathing too hard.

Anyway...we scoured that entire mall with no luck. Sigh. But I did score these two adorable vintage school house chairs for the boys...for $6.50 a piece!

So I went on daydreaming about my buffet for a few more weeks, and MIL kept trying to remember where she had seen it. Then fast forward to cell phone rings around 1pm...its MIL and she found it! It is at an antique shop about 20 minutes away. She rushed over to pick me and the boys up and we were off on our adventure.

I was super excited to finally see it, and also see if I could haggle the price down to fit my budget. There was a sticker on it asking $325...a little high for my liking.

About 15 minutes into the drive was when the trip started to take a dip south. Landon starts screaming. Then Ben decides, why not, I'll start screaming too! It was a lovely high volume opera the MIL and I were treated to. I cranked up the Jack Johnson on the stereo and they both calmed down. They do love their Jack.

We get to the antique shop and the screaming baby culprit is discovered. Poor Landon was soaking wet. Somebody didn't check his diaper before we left the house...of course it wasn't me! Someone else must be to blame. So I change his diaper in the back of the car while his screaming continues, and carry him while dragging this stroller along beside me, knowing the minute I put him in it he will start again. I must say it is a wonderful feeling to know that your embrace can make someone feel so safe, even if your arm is going numb in the process.

We get into the store and said buffet is on the second MIL and I pick up the boys in their umbrella strolers (yes, by this point I was brave enough to put Landon down), and carry them up the stairs. We get up there and one of the store owners starts flirting with the boys. They usually love this, but for some reason Landon takes one look at her and totally freaks out. Scream fest #2. I pick him up, tears streaming down his red cheeks, and all is right in the world again. As a side note, isn't it crazy how quickly babies can produce tears? Just amazes me. But I digress...

We come upon the buffet. I must admit at first glance I was a tad disappointed, just because it wasn't exactly what I had pictured in my daydreams. Not quite the right wood tone, not the exact configuration of shelves I had envisioned.

MIl helps me move some pictures away from it that are leaning up against the side so I can inspect it fully. Landon is once again in his stroller...holding his own. I inspect the back of the piece...then walk back around to the front. All of a sudden I feel something weird under my feet and simultaneously hear a loud craaaack. That was breaking glass, wasn't it? planted both feet directly onto a framed print, Mandy.

"You break it, you buy it." is the first thing that came to my mind. I think I actually said it out loud, after the look of frozen fear wore off of my face. And I was worried about the boys breaking something! Oy.

The store owner comes over to use and reassures me that it is OK, while I apologize all over myself while trying not to cry. Landon's two rounds of scream fests have left me a bit raw. After she reassures me it isn't a problem, I giggle a bit as I tell her that I am interested in the buffet but would like to negotiate the price with the owners. (the shop is made up of booths, so she wasn't the actual owner of the piece).

I can just imagine the conversation if I was talking directly to the owners..."Hey, I just broke one of your antiques, but I want to buy this piece of furniture...for $100 less than you have it marked." Suuuuure.

The owner goes off to call the booth owner and we browse around with the boys a bit. Another sweet lady walks past and says hi to the boys. Scream fest #3 ensues. Apparently not Landon's day. Another few minutes in Mom's arms and all is right with the world again. Back to the stroller.

A few negotiations back and forth with the owners and they come down to $225, the price I told the shop owner I couldn't go over. I'm excited that they agreed to my price, but have that little knot in my stomach telling me that it isn't the perfect piece for our house. I felt like after all that trouble I had to buy it. But it just didn't feel right.

So after all of that, I don't buy it. I did get a couple cute necklaces though. Brand new ones...that's what I bought at the antique mall yesterday.

Thank goodness my MIL has a way of turning even the most harried events into fun times.

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