Wandering

A funny thing happened the other day on my way home from dropping my car off at the local service station for some routine maintenance. Instead of walking straight home as I planned, I just walked. And walked. And walked. You guys know I love to walk. I could walk til Kingdom Come.

The weather was gorgeous and there was no pressing reason I had to rush home. I had planned to deep clean the upstairs bedrooms and bathrooms after having done the main floor and “wreck” room on the 2 days before, but I spontaneously blew it off.

As I walked, I felt really, really lucky. And so thankful to have this freedom and flexibility. I felt thankful for good health and the physical ability to walk and walk and walk. I felt thankful to live in this town that I enjoy so much.

And yes, this is ME. No one hacked by blog. No guest blogger either.

I took some photos along the way and my day turned into a field trip of sorts. Spontaneous field trippin’. It was time really well spent.

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First, I zig zagged through some parking lots and then looped around to walk an area of town that I like. I’ve always admired an obviously historic, grand, brick manor house that I pass during some of my longer walks, so I finally stopped to take a closer look. I snapped a couple of photos, careful not to trespass as its a private residence. I looked it up on the internets, too, because I knew nothing about its history. This is Olney Manor, built in 1937. It was constructed on a 114 acre estate originally owned by one of the Olney Farquhars. The house now sits on about 3 acres, retains many of the original farm buildings behind it and is well shielded by trees. There is a large, contemporary residential subdivision that surrounds it on the same street.

As I passed Olney Manor, I could have taken a right turn to head in the direction of home. I’d walked 2 miles by then. But nope, I didn’t. Instead, I turned left. I could see our town’s Antique Village in the distance and it was hollering my name so I listened. I was pretty pleased with myself at that point for being so WILD. Or something.

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I passed this on the way. I’ve never even noticed the house or barn or whatever it is that’s back there. I’ve always loved the peace sign, though, and I’m so glad I stopped to take this photo.

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This is Olney Antique Village. We’ve lived here for a little over 4 years and I’ve only been inside this place once or twice. It houses the shops of 4 antiques vendors plus a home furnishings store called Hollace Clare. Good thing I had very little money on me and no car, just saying. I had a blast window shopping, though. And also talking with the shop owners, two of them especially.

The proprietors I had conversations with have been at Antique Village for 20-25 years. Business is relatively slow, and they told me that their main business comes from furniture sales, not so much the smaller treasures. But there was plenty of both and I poured over it all as the owners told me stories about different pieces, how they obtain their inventory, some of their travels, how they got into the business, stuff like that.

I think I’ll do some Christmas shopping there this year. The hell with Pottery Barn.

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Hollace Clare is not an antiques place, but OMG I love it. I mean just look at some of this stuff.

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I want this TEAL sectional.

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This is kind of, sort of how I plan to paint a small cabinet in our dining room.

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After I got my fill at Hollace Clare, I went next door to the Swedish antiques and gifts place. It’s another really fun spot to wander through.

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I wish I’d taken a photo of the huge, gorgeous antique kitchen storage bench I saw there. The seat could be opened for storage and also, along with the seat back, pulled out flat to fashion a bed. I’ll have to go back to try to check it out more closely, but I bet it’ll be gone. I did take one photo of this painting of a boy playing guitar, just because I thought it was sweet.

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Next I went to Sisters, Sandwiches and Such for a cup of white bean chicken chili (my favorite) and to check out their funky painted furniture pieces.

The place is owned by a couple of sisters who love to cook and also to paint vintage furniture. Their place is housed in another historic Olney building a block or so away from Antique Village.

When we first moved moved here, I bought a pair of old chairs from them that they’d painted and reupholstered. I actually paid only $30 for one and they threw the second one in for free. They don’t have too much inventory right now but I check back periodically because you never know what you’ll find there. The sisters actually sparked my interest in painting some of my things myself and even gave me a few tips, which was pretty cool.

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This is one of the chairs I got from them.

When I finished my chili, I figured it was time to point myself in the direction of home.

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I stopped by the Backyard Naturalist because it was on the way and it really is a great little gift shop. Jewelry, pottery, wind chimes, books, notecards, garden flags, stones, that kind of thing. Plus, it has everything you’d ever need or want for feeding and watching birds that visit or nest in your yard.

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Then I crossed the street to see if my car was ready. Didn’t expect it to be, but since I was in the neighborhood, why not? Personally, I like Fletchers for routine maintenance. It’s a family owned business that’s been in this community for 50 years. Small town kind of place. Not fancy. AT ALL. But friendly, convenient, reliable, trustworthy.

Anyway, my car wasn’t ready so I kept on walking. I cut through a few parking lots, crossed a main street and would you look at that…

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Can’t be bad to have a HomeGoods and a TJMaxx with a paint store sandwiched in between within walking distance of your house. It just can’t.

I made my way through another parking lot and was finally on the path to home. I love this long stretch of road, especially in the fall…

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Yeah, it was a really good day for wandering. And I got about 6 miles in too. I think I’ll do it again soon.

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