I had taken my 4 children to Wisconsin Dells, and on the way back I stopped at a moving sale at a gorgeous Victorian farmhouse somewhere between Wisconsin Dells and Milwaukee.
The sale was on the first floor of the house, and you could tell the house was being entirely cleared out. (Carpets rolled up, built in cabinetry emptied, all furniture removed or tagged, a room taped off as "Not for Sale" with packed boxes, etc.) The Victorian house, like lots of quality houses "of a certain age", had beautiful custom made and installed beveled windows, polished wood built-ins with beveled glass, etc. It was super clean, polished, decorator curtains, the works.
The sale had a lot of nice quality antique items, but I only got a couple of trinkets for under $5. The four children had already gone back to the car (no toys, no fun...) and I had just paid. Then I noticed this window leaning against the wall. It was "dusted" but still quite dirty (brown streaky dirt, the kind that does not come off with a light finger wipe.) (As opposed to the installed windows in the house, which were crystal clear.) Perhaps it had been stored in a garage or basement, and only recently brought inside. I said "Would you take $40 for the window?". The lady said, "Oh, it's not for sale... wait, how much did you say?" I quickly said "I'll give you $50", and she was like OK!
I ran to the car and scrapped up the last bit of cash from the trip, and borrowed some of the children's leftover souvenir money. (My children frequently have more cash then I do - and guess where they get it from? Then they charge me interest, too.) She had time to change her mind, and I was sure she would. But the window was very dirty, and it does have one piece of cracked glass that would be expensive to replace. (I'll let you find it, I will not point it out.) It was the only loose window, maybe from a remodel? It didn't match the installed (larger and more ornate) beveled windows that I saw.
I returned, paid, and we were both beaming. (Maybe she thought I would change my mind?) She was retiring to somewhere South, (as I remember) and as I left I had the vague feeling some relative somewhere should have picked up that window sooner if they wanted it. [She had commented that her children were going to be coming back later to pack up all the left over items, it was the last day of the sale.] Lucky for me!
My heart beat faster and I glowed all the way home. I have loved stained glass windows and beveled glass windows for years, and have contented myself with taking pictures of vintage windows I would love to own, because the ones I like are always out of my price range. (Perhaps the photos of ones I can't buy will grace a future post...)
When I got home, I carried it in, dirt and all, before any of the luggage. Water, Murphy's wood soap, Windex and lots of rags. (This cleaning job was way beyond paper towels). My husband Carl rolled his eyes and said - and where are you going to put it? (He knows that I don't consider that detail when I buy something, I have lots of finds that I'll someday find a place for.) Amazingly, it is almost a perfect fit for the windows in the second floor of our house. It was meant to be.
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Other memes I am linking up to:
Visit Romantic Home for Show and Tell, (I was entry 20 of 160)
Diane for 2nd Time Around, (I was entry 9 of 23)
Coastal Charm for Nifty Thrifty Tues, (I was entry 95 of 104)
S Hospitality for Today's Thrifty Treasures, (I was entry 87 of 90).
Bloggeritaville for Thrifty Thur, (I was entry 78 of 88).