What I Did Instead of What I Should Have Been Doing

I have a list of work-related tasks that I need to get done this week. It’s a long list. But I haven’t been able to focus on it. Does that happen to you? You KNOW you should be doing one thing but your mind just won’t let you “go there” until you finish the-thing-that-you-really-want-to-be-doing? That happens to me a lot.  And I confess that it happened to me this week.

The thing is this. I bought a jewelry box at a yard sale about a year ago. It’s been on my project list since then, and this weekend it called to me. I have no idea why it chose this weekend since it was very inconvenient for me. But nevertheless, it did. 

The golden oak was dated, the interior rose color was not my favorite, and whoever owned this before me must have sprayed perfume in every drawer. A really awful smelling perfume.  Several times this past year I thought…. “Nah… it’s just not worth the trouble to refinish it,” or “That perfume smell is NEVER going to go away.”  But then I got that nudge and decided to tackle the project.


After giving it a very light sanding, I used Chocolate Fusion Mineral Paint to paint the body, White to paint the inset at the top, and Algonquin to paint the lid and trim. I gave the edges a light sanding, and then applied a wax coating for protection.  I added a little white wax here and there on the body to add interest and black wax on the white trim to add depth. The fabric of the doors and drawers was in great condition, but the fabric in the top part of the jewelry box was dirty and stained. I placed a pretty fabric around the edges on the top area and then lined it all with soft flannel. (Definitely not perfect, but it’s better than it was.) I decided to leave the interior fabric alone. I applied Silver Paint on the gold handles, then rubbed some of it off to get a worn look.


I am pretty happy with the result. But almost as important, is that NOW I can get back to work without my mind dragging me into the family room – where, you can see from the pictures, is still not painted or put together in any way. That’s okay. It makes it a GREAT place for me to work on a project.

So my question is this: Are you more disciplined than I am? Can you ignore those “callings” when they come to you? What’s your secret to staying on task?

P.S. As for the awful perfume smell….. I tried several methods to remove odors (baking soda, newspapers, etc), but what finally worked was just removing all of the drawers, opening the top doors, and leaving everything outside for about a week!


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Comments (14)

  1. DeLoris Musick

    Ohhh, I love your cabinet! You did a fantastic job on the paint and the fabric! I’m no help with staying on task either! I still haven’t painted my bedroom suite, but, I can’t stop having surgeries to start it anyway. The want to is sure there!

    July 1, 2020 at 8:49 am
    • Karen

      Thanks, DeLoris.. and I would say we all totally understand why your bedroom is not painted yet!!!

      July 2, 2020 at 9:25 am
  2. Steph

    Discipline, what is that? Unless it’s life threatening, rearrange priorities. Life is short. Your project looks great!!

    July 1, 2020 at 11:05 am
    • Karen

      Yep! I agree! Running a business- even though I LOVE it -though does take priority many times.

      July 2, 2020 at 9:24 am
  3. Donna Knighten

    Beautiful finished jewelry cabinet. Did the smell come out of the drawers?

    July 1, 2020 at 2:05 pm
    • Karen

      Thanks, Donna. Yes, it finally did. The final trick was to just take out all of the drawers and leave it all sitting open, outside, for about a week.

      July 2, 2020 at 9:23 am
  4. shadowwings4god

    What a beautiful project completed!! Yes, Karen, I’m known for jumping one project to another, especially when I’m in a cleaning mode. I also have a counted cross stitch project I started after my mom passed (it was hers and she never got around to doing it), it has been in “progress” for several years and it is just a small design! What has held me up on it I have no idea except it is one of the pre-printed designs and I’m not to crazy about those. I prefer to doing the actual counting. Okay, so I pulled it out during this pandemic and got at least a portion done, then my eyesight got to me and I set it down….now it has been on my coffee table just jeering at me to finish it!!! So, yep, Now I’m putting off mowing my weed-patch of a lawn! See……..you aren’t alone! LOL Vicki

    July 1, 2020 at 5:47 pm
    • Karen

      Thanks, Vicki. šŸ™‚ I totally understand!! I used to do counted cross stitch and loved it! I liked the counting too, rather than the pre-printed designs. I wonder why that is. I think maybe it just seems more creative? I hope you finish it one day. I hear you on the eyesight thing though. I’m not sure I could do counted cross stitch for very long of a time now. And I can DEFINITELY see putting off mowing the lawn! šŸ™‚

      July 2, 2020 at 9:23 am
  5. Pam K

    Wow! I’ve never seen such a big jewelry box; it’s beautiful!! You must have a lot of beautiful jewelry!! Love the make-over!!

    July 2, 2020 at 9:13 am
    • Karen

      HAHA! No, I only have 1 drawer filled. My husband asked for a drawer, and the others will have scarfs and mittens and such in them. šŸ™‚

      July 2, 2020 at 9:25 am
  6. Looks wonderful Karen! I think Iā€™m going to have to update mine now

    July 4, 2020 at 5:00 pm
  7. Karla

    With a finished product like that, how can you go back to designing with all the other projects “drawing” you? LOL Your designs come out pretty well, too, though. I’d hate to have to make a choice. It’s nice you have something for your mind and something for your hands to offset each other when you need a diversion. Nice that you are excellent at both!

    July 11, 2020 at 5:54 pm
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