June 23, 2024

New Life for Old Lamps.


Lately I have had lamps on my brain. Big ones, small ones and everything in between. In addition to the utilitarian reasons we use lamps, I have found they do have personalities all their own, and can make a statement in any room. One afternoon as we were cleaning out my mothers attic after her passing, I came across this old pair of Ethan Allen lamps from the 60’s. They were solid wood with a dark stain and I remembered seeing them  in our living room as a child. They certainly were very fashionable for the time, but now needed some serious revamping.

Those of you that have followed us here at SouthernSmarts.com you all know I do enjoy designing with color.  For inspiration on this project I used the sea. I love the beach, and thought they would make some interesting table lamps for a smart beach place. Always budget conscious I was going to have to create something with minimal cost.

First, I sanded them with a fine grade sandpaper so they would hold a good primer. I used a spray primer applying very light coats until they were completely covered. The faux brass base and top had to go. I used a high gloss off white paint applied with a small brush, while being careful not to leave brush marks. It was now time for color, and after much thought I decided to use a wonderful turquoise semigloss interior paint that I happened to have in the garage. I did not want a heavy painted finish, as there are some wonderful markings on the lamps themselves, so I decided on a Turquoise wash. I used a little paint and thinned it with water and applied the color with a small rag, carefully controlling how much paint went on at a time. Upon reaching the desired effect I was through.

The next step was a bit difficult. I had to find the perfect shades. I looked everywhere, and finally on my last stop at my local Target, I found them. The shades remind me of the horizon as you look out over the ocean, and they could not have been more perfect.  They were 14.99 a piece, and my wallet was happy.

The final touch were these little beads I had found at a cool shop in Southport and have  crystal droplets that turn them on and off by pull chain.

I now have a really cool pair of lamps that I can’t wait to take to beach.  And the fact that they were my moms makes them that much more special. I feel like I have a part of her there, and I  can’t put a price on that.

Cheers! Chabby



The heart has always been a symbol of love, courage, and devotion. Heart and Soul are two words often found together,

and for good reason. It is through the heart that the soul expresses itself. The heart is the organ that keeps us alive

physically, and it is the central source of our emotions and feelings. We know when someone is speaking from the heart, and

we know when our hearts have been touched. It has nothing to do with logic or being rational; knowing is a feeling. When we say

that someones heart is in the right place we know that regardless of the outward appearance of that person’s life, his or her intent

is soul felt and honest.

How is your heart feeling? Is it sad, happy, light or burdened? Is your heart in the right place? To know what is in our hearts

takes effort and time, for we must practice listening to the voice within. Don’t go to sleep at night with a sad heart; take time

to lighten your heart with the universe. Open your heart to the universe each night before you go to sleep, and it will bring joy

to your soul and wings to your ideas.

My Heart is happy, light and full of love.

Angel Wisdom. Chabby Chaberek

The “short lived life” of Cooper’s dog toy…

     I don’t know about you, but lately I have realized dog toys seem to be getting a bit more expensive. I assume alot of things are headed in that direction these days with the current economy and all. Cooper’s toys are very, very important to him and going without, quite frankly is a complete non-option. He really enjoys taking them apart, which is fine with me as he has never destroyed anything in my home… Not even a shoe!

I was in Target just the other day and thought I would pick up something new…..Well…. NOT! A stuffed toy for $9.00 that will last, if I am lucky, one hour in my home once Cooper gets a hold of it. It just seems like a complete and total waste of money.

Then I thought of something. Goodwill! They have a large selection of donated stuffed toys that are a fraction of the cost, the money helps many in need, it’s a win win. I walked out of that store with 8 stuffed animals of different shapes and sizes and spent $12.00. Just three more dollars than the one toy at Target.

There are some things you should know and keep in mind when shopping for stuffed toys at Goodwill. Avoid any toy that feels like it has those little beads in it. Again, avoid anything with beads!!! It could be dangerous to your pet plus its awful to vacuum up once the toy has been gutted. Also, God forbid you step on them with bare feet on a wood floor. OUCH! And that’s only if you stay standing, if you know what I mean.

Using good common sense, inspect the toy for anything that could be swallowed or cause any sort of blockage in your pet should they decide to ingest anything. Just yesterday I made some adjustments to a toy as Cooper was ready for a new one. Granted she looked like’the “Bride of Chucky” or something creepy from some horror flick when I was thru, but he didn’t seem to care and strutted thru the house proud as a peacock happily showing it off. And last, but not least, wash them in washing machine prior to play time.” I’m just saying”…..”Chabby” for Cooper