Turning trash into treasure

“Look at this sunflower picnic basket,” I held it up for my husband’s inspection.
He glanced at it, “Mmm, hmmm.” A handle lacked a nut and a bolt.
“Well, can you fix it?”
He took it and studied it briefly. “That would be easy.”
I bought it. The next weekend while I was checking out the advertised garage sales, he made a wooden washer similar to the others on the basket and stuck in a small nut and bolt. ON my return, he held out my new sewing basket, “which one did I put in?”
I looked. I guess. I was wrong.
His magic hands and ingenious mind had once again converted garage sale trash into a treasure. We have encountered a few white elephants though.
Like the ceiling fans. I found an unused one with inlaid bamboo weaving. He installed it. It did not work.
He took it out, tore it apart, repaired the switch and re-installed it. It’s worked ever since.
So the next time I saw a fan for sale, I bought it. But all of the king’s skills in electrical, mechanical and physical adjustments could not make it work again. It started. It stopped. It wobbled. It squeaked. Its blades would not balance. That three-dollar investment was no treasure.
Then there was the car lamp to be plugged into the cigarette lighter. For a dime I could replace the one I had ruined. Only at home did I discover the cracks into the wire’s installation. All hubby’s magic with electrical tape could not keep it from the trash can.
The swag lamp that capture my attention to use in my favorite reading corner, challenged my husband’s creativity. He met the challenge and only its light touched my head.
I do bring him a few easy ones. Like the jumbled box of painted dowel rods, knobs and thin boards kicked to the side of a cluttered garage sale. The crumpled instructions suggested a child’s hat rack. Intrigued, I gave the seller her quarter and took the box home. “Can you put this together?”
He glanced at the instructions, counted the pieces, pulled out his stash of spare nuts and bolts and assembled a small wooden giraffe for our pre-schooler’s clothes.
I told him the bookshelf I bought just had to have one section set on top of the other. He stacked-em up. It leaned ominously over the reading chair. He took a stick of wood, shoved it under the edge of the leaning tower of books. It straightened up and held those books right.
Recently, his skills kept me upright. All morning I had plodded from one garage sale to another with a painful backache. When the pain disappeared after I dropped into rocking chair offered at a carport sale. I bought it without checking for flaws.
I had it loaded in the care before I realized it needed immediate attention or my relief would be short-lived. Our hobbies meshed again as the fix-it master took 15 minutes a few screws and a dust rage to make it presentable. A couple minutes of relaxation in the rocker and I was off again, searching for the ultimate challenge to his ingenuity.