Upcycling silverware for other uses and making a pallet bench. Also: cute goats!

Sorry it’s a bit quiet around here; summer is drawing to an end, various school activities have started back up for the children, I’m preparing for the new year at work, and various chores and projects around here require a lot of time.

I almost convinced my husband that we need to start keeping goats; these little cuties were only $50 at the Chelsea Fair yesterday:

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The animal barns are always my favorite part of the fair, but my husband has a much more practical and cool-headed approach to life and thus would not budge on impulse goat purchases, no matter how cute they were. We do have a small outbuilding where they could live, but nothing is fenced in and we have no equipment, so it was pretty sensible of him to hold the line at No!  despite all the begging females surrounding him.

Anyway, since I don’t have time to write much of a post at present, I thought I’d include a couple of frugal-living upcycling tips.

The first one was that I needed a hook to hang a basket on in the garden area.  My husband had grabbed a bag full of old silverware out of the Goodwill pile at his mom’s house, and rather than buying a new hook to install, he made one for me:

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Works great and was totally free!

We also wanted some benches to put around the firepit out back since we often seem to have more people than seats.  We have some old wooden pallets lying out back which we salvaged from next to a dumpster at a factory in Saline (the owner gave us permission to take them):

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He used the bottom support boards for the legs, and the frame pieces form the front and back of the bench.  Then he cut the thin boards to size and used them to form the seat and sides of the bench.  He sanded down the rough boards and sharp edges and sealed it with some linseed oil he had in his workshop and voila – a totally free bench!

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I’m hoping he’ll use some of those old spoons and pallet wood to make a rack for me to hang some of my garden tools on, like this one:

Our goal is to salvage, reuse, and upcycle as much as possible to meet our needs and wants.  It’s not only a good creative outlet, but it also saves us money that can be put to better use (like fencing off a goat enclosure, for instance 🙂 ), plus it keeps us out of the consumerist mind set.

Enjoy these last few days of summer, everyone!

 

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6 thoughts on “Upcycling silverware for other uses and making a pallet bench. Also: cute goats!

  1. Ah, I share your love of goats. I am a goat maid, no doubt about it. I used to milk goats and look after them. One thing they are really good for is clearing brush. They tend to digest weed seeds, so when they clear a field, it doesn’t usually grow right back. When we people weed or cut brush, we’re usually knocking seeds back into the soil, so the weeds are going to regrow.

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  2. I’m assuming they’re milk goats given the emphasis on their cuteness. They are very cute by the way.

    IB is right that they are amazing for clearing brush, including poison oak. They’ll also ring your trees if you let them. Just don’t use them to clear brush and produce milk simultaneously, it will affect the taste of the milk and not necessarily in a good way. If they get into poison oak or the like, it will cause problems for people allergic to it too. At least that is what my mom says.

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    • I believe they were a male and female set of Nubians. We would kept them for the milk and also for their brush-clearing ability.

      Now I never thought about the fact that eating poison ivy would taint their milk, but it makes perfect sense – a boy, do we have poison ivy! Our woods are loaded with it. Thus far I seem not to be sensitive to it, so I’m the designated poison ivy clearer.

      Does your mom keep goats?

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      • Based on their coloration I would guess they are Boer goats, but if they’re milk goats then they are probably Nubians.

        If you have a male, then you can let him eat the brush and it obviously won’t matter. The poison ivy oil getting on his fur won’t be a problem either. After he hits puberty (assuming he’s not a wether), you won’t want to pet him anyway.

        Her family kept goats (among other things) when she was young. She also kept goats as pets for awhile, though they had been sold by the time I was born. One escaped while she was pregnant with me, so after that I guess she decided they needed to find new homes. They used to climb on the “Big Toy” with my brothers and my mother also has a picture of one standing on my father’s back.

        The only farm animals we had after I was born were pigs. I feel like I got swindled there.

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  3. I have to say that I admire HHG for not caving in. It would have been hard on me. You mentioned once before that your daughters were hoping to have goats. It is wise to postpone getting them until you’re set up. Anyway, here is something diffent from me-a goat video.

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