Treasure Hunt

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I like treasure hunts. When I walk along a park trail in the spring, I have to remind myself to look up at what is all around me at eye level, because I am so busy looking for the tiny flowers poking their heads up through the dry leaves.

When Ray and I walked a trail at Denali National Park last August, what I found most fascinating were the mushrooms along the ground.

Denali Mushroom 1

Denali Mushrooms 2

Denali Mushrooms 3
Mushrooms in Denali National Park

When I was taking pictures of a swan on New Year’s Day, I naturally spotted lone feathers on the ground.

Swan Feather at New Harmony
Swan Feather at New Harmony, Indiana

When I took pictures of Day 2 of our winter snowstorm, I spied these icy shrub branches poking up through the snow.

Snow, Too
More Tootsie Pops in the Snow

Our house is filled with little treasures–not the valuable kind that are worth lots of money. Just treasures that used to belong to someone we love or things we like.

After we had our bathroom and laundry room redone in the fall, I decided to get rid of the ironing board I got at my next door neighbor’s garage sale for $2.00. I like it a lot, but it is just too big for the new space. I knew I didn’t want a flimsy ironing board like I’ve bought before at a discount store. I wanted something that wouldn’t jiggle around while I iron (very occasionally).

The day after Thanksgiving I was treasure hunting at one of my favorite antique stores and saw a good solid ironing board leaning against the wall behind some other items. It was even blue–my favorite color. I never dreamed of finding a blue ironing board, and the price was great. I don’t know, maybe $8-$10, or so, and that day everything was 20% off! My friend Vivian who owns the shop got tickled at my being excited about an ironing board, but, hey, I needed one, it was blue, it was sturdy, and it was cheap!

Not only that, but as I reached behind those other things to get to the ironing board, I saw something blue and cream. If there is one thing I like better than blue, it’s blue and white or blue and cream. I didn’t exactly know what it was I found that was blue and cream and Vivian didn’t either. It was two long strips of cream fabric with beautiful hand embroidery down one side and across the end of each strip. Vivian had priced them at $16, but, again, this was her annual 20% off-the-whole-store-on-the-day-after-Thanksgiving sale.

Pretty soon, I knew exactly what these two strips of embroidered fabric were–the new kitchen curtains I had been wanting to make sometime for my bare windows. I just checked the price of ironing boards and the cheapest one I found at Amazon was $24.97. I got a good, solid ironing board and kitchen curtains for less than that!

It was several weeks before I found the twenty minutes it took me to hem the short ends and sew a casing on the long plain ends. Voila! Kitchen curtains.

Here they are again. Yesterday they framed a snow picture and today they illustrate my story. By the way, they took a good long soak to get the stains out, but out they came! 

I like to find pieces of handwork like this and think about the lady who labored over it, stitch by stitch. I don’t go to antique stores to find $1500 Louis XV writing desks; I go to find $3 cereal bowls and hand-embroidered doilies. I really enjoy the treasure hunt.

We can go on a treasure hunt anytime. There is the counting-our-blessings kind of treasure hunt. On one walk from the bedroom to the kitchen, we can find air and water and love and family and memories and . . .

You fill in the rest.

He Himself gives to all people life and breath and all things.
Acts 17:25b

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  1. Delightful post! I love knowing the story that goes with your lovely kitchen curtains now.:-) I enjoy hunting for low-cost treasures as well, especially at places like Goodwill. I have found quite a few for our home, including a companion piece for a framed picture that a dear friend gave me many years ago.

    • Thanks for the inspiration to write it. I don’t think it would have ever crossed my mind. A companion piece to a picture you already had is really cool. I like Goodwill finds, too.

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