The Great Furniture Miracle


We’ve had everything in storage tents on the property for months now, and we know that many of the items in boxes are completely ruined because of the rainy summer, fall, and now winter. The furniture was in a separate tent, which was the wrong tent when I bought it. I thought I was getting a little plastic garage-in-a box, where you insert Tab A into Slot B for a bunch of metal tubes, and then you cover the skeleton with a vinyl shell. I ended up with a party tent, with the same metal skeleton, but instead of a one-piece cover, the cover is several vinyl pieces that you can use in various configurations to just have a roof or have sides, too.

In other words, not sturdy. Especially when you get a foot of snow.

We had that much snow about two weeks ago, and I refused to look over at this tent afterwards. I have to back up toward it and then drive right past it, and I pretended it was as perfect as when we put it together. I knew better; I simply didn’t want to know the degree of the potential devastation.

When I finally built up the nerve to look over, I wished I hadn’t. The whole roof, still covered with snow which had then been rained on and frozen, was buckled in the middle. Crap. Double crap.

Frowning, swearing, and stomping, I decided to peek in. After all, I’m getting a dumpster for most of the stuff in the other tents — I figured I would mentally add to the cubic footage in my head.

Wait, what? The box spring, standing on its long side, was holding up the tent roof. The inside seemed dry, and most of the furniture was okay! (Well, besides the brown recliner that never would recline and that is now covered in mold. No loss.)

That afternoon, Frank and I had ourselves quite a time. We started with one of us inside the tent, pushing up on the tent roof, while the other one pulled and pushed on gigantic ice floes, trying to break them up, knock them off, not get brained — and for the last one, we just disassembled the corner of the tent and let the last massive piece of ice slide off. We stood there, wet and panting, and high-fived each other.

We moved the washer and dryer, the other $25 furnace (I’m usually a bit more of a big spender), and some smaller items I could help with into the barn. Then I put my foot down and refused to move any more. I’ve moved thousands of boxes for UPS, but furniture and I are only friends when they are already in place.

My loving husband gave me my early ♥Valentine♥ gift on Saturday. He called a young friend of ours, and while I was away at a class, Frank and Joe moved all but one thing into the barn, carefully placing all of it into the back corner.  The antique icebox, the antique sewing machine, the desk, the hutch, the sofa, the bed pieces, and more — even the kitchen sink Frank’s aunt gave us! — it all fit so nicely, just like it did in my head months ago. And my mother-in-law gave me another gift by agreeing to take our old bedroom set — she needs a larger one, and I don’t need two.

(And the thing that is still outside where the tent was, now well-tarped instead of tented, were three pieces of slate that were frozen together. We can’t move them until it gets warmer: they’re 100+ pounds each, and now they’re a 300+ pound paperweight!)

We’ve looked over everything and as far as we can tell, it all survived. A small victory, in light of so many of our other possessions destined for the landfill, but a victory nonetheless. And thank you, Frank and Joe — you pulled it off in an hour. (An hour!!) ♥


(And we can still walk around, and there’s a ton more space on the shelf you can kind of see at the back: Frank made us an area that’s 30′ wide by 6′ high by 8′ deep! That will handle light things, like lamps, small tables, and any Christmas stuff that survived! ♥)