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Archive for January 4th, 2012

Several underused items sat on the enclosed back porch of the old farmhouse. The porch was screened in and usually covered for winter. It was actually a side porch facing the barn, old well, potato house, etc. (on the right side of the house in this figure). There was a long shallow sink that required my standing on a stool to reach, and there was a large chest freezer where I swear one could store several bodies. In reality, it could hold some serious wild game and garden veggies. The wringer-washer sat on one side of the porch along with an old table and a cabinet. I remember my grandmother would hang flowers from the rafters in the ceiling. She loved dried arrangements and cut some each year to dry on the porch. I spent many hours on this porch whether it was playing, shelling corn, or helping to roll brooms made from wild broom straw (photo here of wild broom straw), but this story is about the old green cabinet—the pie safe.

I don’t remember the safe being used for anything except for storage, but I was told it held fresh baked pies and goodies my great-grandmother made. Today, it holds my Christmas dishes and other décor, collectibles like cookie jars, nutcrackers, and my snowman teapot and cups… Many years ago, my mom painted the safe an off-white, preachy color that I am not crazy about. After we moved it to our house 20 years ago, I would open the doors and decorate it for Christmas, but it has not been decorated in a while. This photo was taken some years ago when it sat to the left of the fireplace. My apologies for TV interference :).

I wanted to strip the cabinet and restore it, maybe paint it in its original color or a medium shade of blue and add new screening, but it has gone this long without my doing anything to it. It will probably remain this way. When I was little, I had no idea why it was called a pie safe. I thought safes had solid walls with dependable locks. This safe has screens! I was quite silly, but then again, I did not understand the meaning of the “coffin house”–another story and different family.

Happy Gardening and I hope you have a safe day!

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