I married a handyman. Over the years, Blaine has fixed water pipes, gas lines, changed brakes, took apart a dashboard to solder an electronic component that kept shorting out and sending the dashboard dark, and refinished a table and church pew for our dining room furniture. He’s built rock wall flower beds and changed vehicle belts and a host of other things. Last Saturday, he had my lawn mower torn apart, trying to figure out why it kept revving to a ridiculous speed. (Carburetor, I’m told.)
All that, for this story. A month or so ago, we agreed a new couch was in order. Ours was given to us several years ago, and was a huge blessing to us, but a year and a half ago we wore completely through the arm fabric and I recovered them. Last Christmas, we bought a slipcover for it because we’d gone through the seat cushion too. Now… it’s not so comfy anymore. On a search for a used sofa that didn’t cost a lot but would serve our family, my first choice was leather. I’d heard so many people say how well it wipes clean and dreamed of not washing slipcovers and the messes these children of mine can make.
I looked at hundreds of ads by people wishing to sell their sofas. I came to one conclusion: even used, leather is too expensive.
Then… I found a blue (not my first choice, but it’ll do) leather sofa. $50. Missing the mattress for it’s hide-a-way bed. (Sofa bed hadn’t crossed my mind… but it seemed like a great addition for our small house that doesn’t offer much space for company!) I agreed to buy it, and went home to do research on what it would take to find a mattress. Ouch. Those things are expensive too. Then I found a couch listed for sale for $35 with a sofa bed. I called on it. I kid you not, I asked if she still had the sofa bed and the lady said…
“It’s really in rough shape. It was my aunt’s, and her dogs tore it up. But if you wanted it for the mattress inside…”
Wow. She didn’t even know what I needed it for. So yesterday, we went and picked it up. She took $20. So we now have $70 into two couches that I plan to combine into one and Blaine has agreed to demolish the leftovers. (Dear, dear man. He didn’t even bat an eye when I told him my plan.)
We started combining couches, but quickly learned the sofa bed mechanisms on my blue couch were less than straight. Blaine went to work, taking out the entire sofa bed mechanism from the ugly couch, putting them into the leather couch, and the only modification was the couch needed to be 1/2 inch taller to accommodate the folding of the bed frame. He fixed that, and we had a complete couch, with perfect mattress and sliding mechanism, and we’re out $70… less than we ever thought we’d have to spend.
The amazing part? Water spilled on my new couch last night. A quick wipe up later, we could still sit on the couch… and not shift around uncomfortably.
I know this is a long story. It could have ended very differently. The mechanism could have not fit in the leather couch, the mattress could have been to thick to fit… but in the end, we got exactly what we’d hoped for at a good price and I can’t help but think: Does God care about the little things? Like a couch that we can enjoy and use that takes less work to maintain – that’s comfortable to sit on too. I’m rather inclined to think He does. If you all have been around a few years, you’ll remember this story about Sterling and the desires of his heart. Amazing.