Some History in Lexington, KY at the Mary Todd Lincoln House, Thanks to Goodwill

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DKNY Skinny jeans- $7.49, representin’ at the Mary Todd Lincoln house in Lexington, KY, Goodwill

Unpictured- “Henry and Clara”, a novel, .99, Goodwill in CT.

Who’s that sexy tourist in DKNY skinny blue jeans?  (hey, if you can’t pay yourself compliments, then who can?  I’m aware that question doesn’t make much sense)

It’s me.

I’m so excited about this picture and everything about it for one main reason- the reason I am where I am in this picture as well as the clothing in it are BOTH owed to Goodwill.  This picture is of me visiting the home of the late Mary Todd Lincoln, an experience I am so thankful to have had, but would never have happened if it hadn’t been for a novel called “Henry and Clara” that I picked up and couldn’t put back down at Goodwill last August.

Not only was the book amazing, but it thankfully broke my 1-2 year reading dry spell that I had sadly been on.  It was about Henry and Clara Rathbone, the two people sitting in the booth with Abraham Lincoln when he was assassinated by one John Wilkes Booth.  It is a gripping, tragic, controversial love story as well as informative historical recounting of those turbulent times in our country’s history that will have anyone who reads it gripped.  Who knew how interesting their stories were?  Well I am glad one person did and decided to write this amazing and informative novel, allowing me to look like a huge dork being excited about historical dead people when talking to friends about my life… So If you love History, Abraham Lincoln, or just looking at words on paper at all, you’ve GOT to give this one a try.

While the story is about Henry and Clara Rathbone, Abraham Lincoln and his wife Mary were not surprisingly large parts of the story as well, as there would be no book without them.  I always grow very close to the characters (er in this case…real people….?) in the books that I read.  So when I found out that Mary Todd Lincoln’s house, where she spent ages 14-22 of her life and visited later on with Abe, was in the very town of Lexington, KY that I happened to be visiting for a couple days, I was quite ecstatic.  I couldn’t wait to get there and stand on the very same ground that she had.

If she was alive, this may be considered stalking.  Lucky for me, she isn’t, so I’m safe for the moment.

I stood on the ground, and you can now view the excitement of that happening at your leisure in the picture I have posted above.

But without Goodwill, I wouldn’t know of Mary Todd, or be excited about her house in Lexington, KY, where I happened to be visiting.  And it would have been just another historical landmark on the side of the road I would have driven right by.

Assuming I was on that road for some other reason.  If not, I would have not even driven by it, but I didn’t know what else to say so I said “I would have just driven by.”

I also wouldn’t have had any pants on.

Well, that may be false.  I’m sure I would have put something on, but they wouldn’t have been these great DKNY skinny died blue jeans.

THE POINT IS- the reach of Goodwill knows no bounds in my life.  🙂  And I am so thankful for that.

I’m also sure the late First Lady would have appreciated my frugality at her residence.

Actually- I know that’s not true- the book talked of her great opulence in what she spent on her clothing and fashions, sometimes ridiculous amounts.

Look at me!  Look what I know about Abraham Lincoln’s wife’s dressing habits!  I’m so impressed.

(There I go again with the compliments.) I’ve gotten used to it.

They had tours at the house, but they were an hour long and we were on a time crunch, so we left sans tour and some history learning that may have happened, but most likely with a happier boyfriend.  He did not read the book, so I’m SURE did not share my excitement for this old wood structure on the side of the road that housed some people at some point.  I did read it, and so did share in my own excitement quite a bit.

Here are a few more pictures of the grounds, and the lovely sign saying, “this building is of importance- take note” outside.  Pictures are not allowed inside, so I obliged the rules and kept my finger clicking to the exterior.  The gardens were at least quite pretty though.

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And there ya have it.  Thanks to Goodwill, I read this great book and found out about Mary Todd Lincoln, the controversial love story and lives of Henry and Clara Rathbone who were in the booth with Abe that night, and so much more.

Next on my list…Natchitoches, LA, the setting for Cane River, one of my favorite historical fiction novels about four generations of slavery and then early emancipation.  Its only just over 10 hours away…somehow I just haven’t gathered the courage or time to make that visit yet.  I’ll keep you posted….

….as I’m sure I’ll be wearing or using something Goodwill when the time arrives.

Happy thrifting and living,

❤ Jaime

 

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Repurposed old drawers,, the definition of being thrifty

Repurposed old drawers,, the definition of being thrifty

Ok so this isn’t exactly reusing paper towels, but it still saves some money and looks cute.

I don’t know how I stumbled upon this idea, or if I searched it out, but I indeed had two extra drawers hanging around I didn’t need, and guess what, it turns out they’re are bountiful ways to repurpose drawers (just check Pinterest!). One of these ways being stacking them- after removing the knobs on the lower drawer of course (optional to remove them on the top) and turning them into a shelf. Voila. What was two old drawers, is now a useful, chic, repurposed, environmentally friendly book, picture and snack holder.

K, you caught me. There was a snack on the top shelf where the cross stands in the picture.

I took the snack out for the picture, trying to act proper and like I don’t snack I’m bed. It was chex mix if you must know. The generic kind. Does the trick still.

I had one of the drawers hanging on my wall as a hanging shadow box type shelf, very cute, but I have since rearranged my room, for the fourth and hopefully last time since arriving in this abode, and this works better now than the shelf. And I hated to have the drawers separated like that.

Right now I don’t have them attached with glue or anything, but it’s pretty secure just sitting pretty on top of each other like that.

Happy being thrifty, what have you repurposed lately? Could be clothes, furniture…your children…

-Jaime 🙂

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A Smattering of Things…

There will really be no theme to this post…because I have found so much good stuff in the past couple months of working part time (less work = more time to thrift, albeit less money to thrift with…:(, so I will post the stuff I have already taken pictures of, with no rhyme or reason to a theme between the items.

I will start however, with showing you wonderful people, the books.  Good book finds at Goodwill are few and far between, but when they happen, they happen.  These two books are making it to the top of my all time favorites list, and I recommend them to anyone looking for a good read.  And I am also very excited because I have a cool story (at least I think its cool, you can be the judge for yourself 🙂 to go with one of the finds.  I found these two books

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a couple months ago.  (Sidenote- do you love my new bed spread in the background??:)  And as much as I love to read, I haven’t seemed to find the time in the last 6 months or so.  So two plane trips to Nashville and back provided the perfect amount of time to finish both books, almost. The second flight landed a few pages shy of me finishing “How to be Good” 😦 The pilot clearly did not get the memo about the book I was trying to finish and did not circle the runway a few more times for me.  And I have yet to complete it…  But still, both books provided the perfect distraction from small seats and sitting all too close to people I have never met before and generally have no desire to meet again.

I know you are waiting in anticipation of the ‘cool’ story.  Well, here it is.  On the first flight, I had “The Glass Castle” in my purse and ready to read.  Being the nosy person I am, I noticed the gal sitting directly in front of me was engrossed in a book of her own.  Inconspicuously peering over her shoulder to see what book she is reading, I saw it was none other than the Glass Castle!!  This excites me more than you could know.  I love a good coincidence.  And I have found out since that it is a somewhat popular book, but up until that point, all I knew of it was I picked it up at Goodwill for a $1 because it said something along the lines of “NY Times Bestseller” on the front…a little known qualifier of good writing, you may have heard of it:).  So to see a random girl reading it in front of me was very exciting to me, and I couldn’t wait to share it with you fine people, as I am now.  Of course, being the social person I am, I proceeded to tell her I was about to begin that exact book, and she prompted me that it was a very good book, sad, but good.  I found after reading it that I disagreed.  In my opinion, the Author did not write it in a sad way.  More factual, but with a general feeling of the author overcoming unbeatable odds, ‘horrible parenting’, and with a happy ending if you ask me.  All’s well that ends well, right?  She is a current contributor to CNN and MSNBC, so I can’t say her life ended all that badly.

The second book, I was more than pleasantly surprised with as well.  I read “How to be Good” for the duration of both my flights to Nashville and back, and I have all intentions of finishing it soon.  It is a great look into human nature, and the very subject of “how to be good” as the title says.  It is a funny perspective of a doctor struggling with the fact that she may not be a very good person, compared to her newly spiritually transformed husband, despite having to ‘look at people’s boils’ and such day in and day out.  And she uses the fact that she has to do such things as a leveling ground for any bad thoughts or actions she may have.  It is very interesting, and I reccommend it highly.

Now we are done with the book section of this post, I can move on to the fun stuff…clothes:)  That’s what it’s really all about in the end, right?

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I got this beautiful lime green Ann Taylor Loft sweater for $5.99 in perfect condition at my local Goodwill boutique.  And I have gotten good use out of it so far at work in my sweet little classroom where I work each day:)

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I got this scarf as well for $2 on another trip to the same Goodwill.  Cynthia Rowley from Target.

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Lastly, I got this bracelet along with two other ones of the same style but different color beads that you can wear as a set of 3 for $2 total.  That’s right, $2 total.  The other bracelets not pictured are a coral orange color, and a light purple.  Love.

And all together now…

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🙂

Oh, and that’s my sweet dog admiring my thriftiness and fashion sense.  He wants to be like me.  Someday.

During my last Nashville trip, I had to make sure I visited the Goodwill that kept me well dressed for the last couple of years I was there, and it once again did not dissappoint.  I found three lovely items in one trip.

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A sparkly, warm, brown oversized short sleeve sweater from Express, $5.99.  And the original tag was still on it when I bought it, so it has never been worn before.  Brand new.  I wore it with skinny jeans and brown boots and a long sleeve shirt underneath for a comfy and fashionable look for less!

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A Bar III dress for $5.99.   Can’t wait to put this one to use.

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And a Forver XXI green and white babydoll business casual top, $4.29.  I have worn it to work with a white cardigan and tan slacks with the off-white patent leather Talbots flats I purchased at Goodwill in October for $8. (see Alex’s 6th Birthday Trip Post in October)  Wearing two items in one outfit from Goodwill is always a good day!

Lastly, everyone needs a good Cinderella shoe to put atop their dresser correct?  Correct.  I have yet to figure what I am going to store inside it, although judging by the look of the top of my dresser, I’m sure I could just start there.  I’ll take other suggestions though:)  I got this shoe at a steal for $2.

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I hope you enjoyed looking at and hearing about these finds as I did finding them and using them!  Go out and see what you can find for much, much less!  And tell me about it!