Whimsical Blue and White Ottoman
It is hard to believe that we are almost a month into 2020. Most people have made and forgotten New Year’s resolutions and everyone is busy finishing up things from last year so they can finally start this year. The end of one year and start of a new one is always a tough time for me. I think of all the things I didn’t accomplish in the past year and feel overwhelmed with the amount I want to accomplish in the next 365 days (366 with the leap year!).
As the new year came, I realized that an ottoman project I was hired to do back in September was still sitting in my storage only half done. Christmas is a hard time for us Ciccozzi’s to do anything that is not holiday related. The tree farm was busy this past year and we are so grateful! In the same breath, I think of all the things I put on hold to support my family business.
I took a few days off after new year and decided then and there that I was going to finish the ottoman project. That fresh first week in January, I also read one of the most soul awakening Bible verses. Psalm 37 verses 7-9 read, “Rest in the lord, and wait patiently for him. Don’t fret because of him who prospers in his ways, because of the man who makes wicked plots happen. Cease from anger and forsake wrath. Don’t fret, it leads only to evildoing. For evildoings shall be cut off, but those who wait for the lord shall inherit the land”. What I forget sometimes is that there is a season for everything. This passage commands us to be patient in the lord. He will provide the resources and time you need to get the job done. But he will also wait until the right season.
I thought of those words as I took out the ottoman and continued to work on it. This was one of the first times that I worked on a project and didn’t feel anxious, angry, or resentful. I took my time, enjoyed each step of the process and when I made a mistake, I took a deep breath and asked, ‘What can I learn from this?’
As I took the staples out of the old fabric, I first struggled with tearing the fabric underneath that I wanted to reuse. I stopped trying to rip the staples out with plyers got a small screw driver. With a little patience and using leverage from the tool, the staples easily came out. I kept a light heart and thought threw my challenge instead of turning to my wicked ways and getting angry. If you are stuck and feel like you are unable to finish something because you are not smart enough or don’t have enough experience, turn your mind to God. Find his peace and do everything to the glory of the Lord. Make a small pivot and see how much of a difference it makes. You will feel so accomplished in the smallest of successes.
I got this little ottoman sanded, painted, and upholstered in just a few hours. I didn’t feel proud of myself. Instead, I felt so grateful that my Lord helped me. Philippians 1, verse 6 says, “Being confident of this very thing, that he who began a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ”. God brings us work and gives us dreams in our hearts. He would not give you those gifts if he was not going to equip you with everything you need to succeed and give glory to Him.
If something is weighing on your mind because you have been pushing if off, don’t fret. God is waiting for the right season for you to accomplish those things. This is challenging to accept! Believe me, I am a human who feels like if they have a task to do, they need to do it right away. Many people see that as a strength, but it actually makes me feel very weak. When I cannot accomplish that thing right away, it makes me feel defeated and worried that the people who depend on me are going to be disappointed. I found from my client for this beautiful little ottoman, it could not be farther from the truth. She was so grateful and said it was done just in time for her newly remodeled office to be furnished!
Even though Christmas is over a month gone, let’s remember why Jesus was sent to earth. He had one purpose, and that was to save us from our sins. Jesus Christ died so we can live. On the cross, his second to last words spoken were ‘It is finished’. Jesus is an example of how we are to live. We are to serve God and see his plan through. He will give us what we need in the exact right moment.
Black and White Wicker Chairs
Are you appreciating each day you have or are you complaining about all the things you must do? It is easy to be grateful for the big things in my life. I give thanks to God for finding my future husband, for the opportunity to go see my friend on the coast of Oregon, or for the house I was finally able to purchase. However, I get lost in the little grinds throughout the day and feel so negative that I am convinced I need a change in my life. If I would stop and give thanks to God for the lessons instead of complaining about the challenge, joy would fill my life every day, not just in the big moments.
I was so thankful when Tyler came home with these two weathered white wicker chairs! I asked the Cozzi Creations’ Facebook friends what color to paint them and was so grateful for the feedback. A few weeks passed by and I hadn’t found time to work on the chairs. Soon my attitude turned into, ‘I have to go work on those chairs this weekend (insert eye roll emoji here)’. It is easy to complain and be negative when we are overwhelmed and pressured to do, do, do. But as Christians, we are called to be grateful in all circumstances. Ephesians 5:20 says, ‘Give thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ’. We need to change our negative thoughts to show appreciation for what we have instead of dread. Now, ‘I have to go finish that chair’ turns into ‘I get to go work on my chair; I am so blessed’.
So I finally made the time to work on my chairs. I cleaned up the fringed wicker and secured the ends so it wouldn’t unravel. I took the old springs out where the cushions were, washed them and painted them black, which was a drastic change from the original white. The wicker chairs took three coats since there were many nooks and crannies to get the black paint into. With new plywood, I cut out squares for the new cushions to sit on. I found this perfect black and white buffalo check fabric to put over the seats. A trick to stapling fabric on a floating seat like this is to stretch the fabric in all four directions and place a staple on each of the four sides. That way you can lay your fabric with the pattern straight and then work around the cushion to secure the fabric. Always ensure to secure the cushion to the plywood too so that it won’t move under the fabric. I put four staples in mine, one for each side.
As I looked at the fabric, I thought about how everything is not so black and white in this world. There are many times where I feel like I am in a gray area and can’t make a decision. This is usually when stress and worry come into my life too. I understand now that with God, things are black and white. He tells us good from evil and he commands us to be thankful instead of complaining. 1 Chronicles 16:34 says, ‘Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever’. God wants us to live in his love, not in our worry; to be thankful each day, not just in the obvious moments in our life.
I always feel such joy once my projects are complete. God gives us gifts for us to use so that we may rejoice in his name. I created these two wicker chairs for someone on this earth to find joy in. It is clear how we are to live our lives on this earth. Give thanks in joy and in those mundane times when you feel lost. Be grateful for the little challenges and the big moments in your life. For all these are part of who you are today.
I am a farm girl through and through. I thought going to school, getting a degree, and moving towards a city would make me happy. You can take the girl off the farm but you can't take the farm out of the girl. You will learn much more about me with each piece of junk I transform into beautiful home decor.