Saturday, June 26, 2010


Mikey the insurance salesman had a yard sale today. Every time someone asked how much he wanted for something, he would quote a price, and then exclaim, “You’re killing me! This is a great deal! You’re killing me!” He said it when I thought about buying a set of Spode Christmas plates (“Hey, they’re only two bucks—you’re killing me here!”). While I would be sorry to be the cause of his demise, I decided to apply my “Will you use it now?” criterion and passed up the plates. I did actually buy a couple of other things there, but made sure when it came time to pay that I dealt with Mrs. Mikey, who was very quiet as she stood off to the side watching her husband. She told me they are moving to Hawaii, since he works in insurance he can do that anywhere. Mikey was also giving away travel mugs that turn out to have his business card inside and a number for an insurance company on the outside. Guess Mikey is going to sell insurance for someone else.

Next on the strange-o-meter was the couple and teen daughter minding their sale. I thought there was a baby carriage between the two ladies but it turned out to be the equipage of their cat Mango.
He is an indoor cat, they said, so the only way he can come outside is zippered into his carrier. He showed no inclination to jump out when they unzipped it so I could pet him (though he did want to to climb inside my camera). They also said he lets their daughter dress him up and that he has his own closet of kitty clothing.

If you met anything weirder than that I hope you escaped to tell the tale.

I spent $7.25 today. The haul included a trio of CDs—classical for me, jazz for my husband, and one that I got because I'm sure the chance will never come my way again. It's by The New Percussion Group of Amsterdam. I have no idea at all what kind of music it will turn out to be. I love the feeling that I'm living large, especially when I can get it for less than fifty cents.
Another sale netted a pack of cute notecards…
…and a Pyrex refrigerator dish and lid. No chips or dings on it, and it's a size I don’t have.
I hesitate to describe it as vintage since “oven and microwave safe” is embossed on the bottom. I can't bring myself to think something made after the microwave became a home appliance could be vintage. If I did, that would make me feel, well, old.

Oh, to heck with that. Embrace your geezerhood, that’s my motto.

Perhaps it's my geezer status that explains my patience when I bought this piece.
Yes, it is indeed a red glass handbag. With gold splotches in the glass.
It’s going to a colleague who likes weird glass things. After settling on the price with the seller, she mentioned that it had cost “over $100.” I very tactfully bit my tongue and did not point out the price tag still on the bottom.
A couple of weeks ago my husband and I were talking about what we should keep in our wonderful Danish credenza and hutch after we move to our midcentury house. He thought perhaps barware would look good. I pointed out that we basically don’t drink (only the occasional glass of wine). But today I found a set of 4 of these glasses, and they were so inexpensive I decided to start our barware collection, just in case we decide to go ahead with it.
(The Steiff bunny was already part of our household.)

Picked up this book because the illustrations look fun.
It's from 1912, and includes stories like “The Wibblewobble Home on Fire,” “Alice Wibblewobble’s New Bonnet,” and “How Jimmie Stood on His Head.” Did a little research when I got home and found that the author also wrote the Uncle Wiggly stories, and was the main writer of the Tom Swift series. One source mentioned that he was famous for never using the word “said” if he could help it, so I started scanning my book. Sure enough, for every time he used “said” there were probably ten variants, including spoke, went on, exclaimed, cried, called, replied, answered, declared, whispered, and begged. Mr. Garis must have lived with a thesaurus at his elbow, or else memorized it.

Here is what I bought from a surfer. Yes, a real live Huntington Beach surfer, with a surfing vanity plate on his car and the word “dude” practically hanging off his lips.
Kind of makes you wonder how tough those surfers really are, doesn’t it? Fisher Price made these in the late Fifties/early Sixties (I had a good time looking up vintage Fisher Price toys, and now will be keeping an eye out for more). My original thought was that I would try to sell this cutie, but she fits so well with the rest of my Transportation Bunnies collection.
It's the collection two shelves below my Smiles collection.And speaking of collections, this may be my favorite find of the day—an addition to my acorn collection.

Is that cool or what? Vintage crocheted acorns. I love Saturday morning!

Saturday, June 12, 2010


Every afternoon when I get home from work, my husband is very good about remembering to ask how my day was. Sometimes it's good, sometimes rather tedious. Sometimes I have to say, “It was just a day.”

That’s pretty much how this week’s garaging went…it was just a day. Picked up a few items, spoke briefly to a few people. Ran across only one dog, an Australian shepherd, and when I said hello to him, he got up and moved to another spot to lie down. Made me feel like the proverbial chopped liver—though I'm sure chopped liver would have been much more interesting to this dog than I was!

Thank heavens I met Roxy on Friday.
She was not only friendly, but quite willing to swoon at my feet!
Ran across several sales with silly prices. At one, my friendly “Having fun yet?” was met with an uber-sarcastic “Oh yeah, right.” She went on to complain bitterly that no one was buying anything. Of course when I started looking at her wares it was obvious why. I think the only things there under five dollars were those crappy plastic toys that come free with kids’ meals in fast food joints. I noticed a faded cotton jacket with a tag that said “Vintage 1980’s—$15.00.” Puh-leeze!

My next to last stop was like an estate sale. I think the mother of one of the two guys there had gone to assisted living and they were clearing out her house. They mentioned something about her having run a shop, which must have been a second-hand clothing store. There were boxes and boxes of fairly nice clothing, mostly from the 80’s, with hand-written hang tags still attached. While I was rummaging, another guy paid for something and took it to his car, then came back with a picture in his hand. “Do you guys ever go to Alaska?” he asked them. They answered no, sounding a bit puzzled. I too wondered where this was going. “I was there last summer, and I caught the third largest flounder [I think it was a flounder] of the year.” He was clearly quite proud, citing all the fish’s statistics. Evidently the picture was of this fish. He went on, “I thought I was going to win the prize for the biggest one of the season, but just two weeks before the season ended the same captain who took me out caught a hundred and thirty seven pounder. Made mine look like a trout.”

He went on without a pause to pitch his services as an antiques appraiser and said his rates are very reasonable. And off he went. The two guys seemed a bit stunned, and I admit I'm still pondering the connection of big fish and antiques.

Even a so-so day of driveway shopping adds up…in this case to $8.00. Some items I plan to give away, like this bubble stuff…
…and this brand new box with handwoven cloth on the lid (I like the price I paid better than the original)…

…and a nice tea mug with lid and insert.

I think I have a spot for this candle lantern on my patio, but if not I can give it away too.
A book to inspire me in using all my Saturday morning treasures.
A jazz CD for the hubs.
Got four of these cushions. I need something on some of our outdoor chairs. These are a little puffy, but when you sit on them they settle right down!
They’ll be fine until I find something better. The seller said they came from a seven-foot-long sofa that has gone bye-bye. I think it went to that Family Room in the sky.

And finally, I picked up a couple of sweaters after rummaging through all those boxes. I think I'll felt this one.
Plan to sell this one. There are no tags, but looks to me like wool, lined with silk, probably Fifties or Sixties. It needs a better home than a box on a driveway!

Looks like I will be missing from Blogland next weekend. We’re going to a family reunion on the Oregon coast so I'll be doing that instead of garaging. They’ll probably all wonder why I'm so twitchy on Saturday morning!

Monday, June 7, 2010


You guys really made my day! So many of you visited my web site that I made as a class project, that I got this email from the website host today:

Subject: Your Site is the Highest Rated
Congrats - Your site with username petalsedge is in the Top 1% of all sites created this week!

Woo hoo! Of course, maybe they say that to all the girls...since it went on to try to sell me a domain name. Little do they know whom they are dealing with. Like the Queen of Fifty Cents could be convinced to pay for something she can have for free. As if!

But I confess I am totally jazzed, and encouraged to add more content (soon, soon) at the Petal's Edge.

Saturday, June 5, 2010


I've always found that asking folks having yard sales if they’re having fun yet is a great conversation starter. Most say yes, but you can tell from their voices if they actually mean it or not, and we can continue on with joking about their sincerity level, and how much more fun it is to go to sales than to have them. But I knew it wasn’t going to work this morning when I asked an old guy, “Having fun yet?” and his reply was, “I sure hope we don’t.”

Not sure if he misheard me or was a dyed-in-the-wool misanthrope, but didn’t feel inclined to pursue it. Fortunately he was the only sour note all morning. Started out with a sale near home where a mom was trying to get her grown kids to clear their stuff out of her garage. Her son was trying hard to sell me item after item, beginning with a stuff Alf toy, which he described to me as an icon of the Eighties. I was easily able to resist Alf, along with just about everything else. Spotted a ream of bright colored paper though, and when the price turned out to be fifty cents, we were all happy—a sale at last.
But it got better; the mom thought there was more of it around somewhere and unearthed two more packs, which they threw in on the fifty cent deal. Can't beat that! I was almost finished at their place when I stumbled a bit on some of the stuff cluttering the driveway. “Hey,” said the son, “you break it, you buy it.”

“Honey,” I said, “if I break me, you’ve bought it.”

Met some lovely doggies today. First was Dahlia
who had her stuffed toy tucked into her bandanna to keep it close and safe.

This is her owner demonstrating some of their merchandise.

Buddy deserves an acting Oscar for his performance.
As soon as I moved toward the gate to pet him, he pressed against it in the manner of a dog who was abandoned as a mere child, unloved and unwanted. When I began to scratch his chest through the bars, he practically swooned.
I said something to the woman having the sale about what a great act he had going. She kind of sniffed and gave him a not very friendly look. “Yeah, he’s a lot like my husband,” she said darkly.

Next on our itinerary was Violet.
This is Cooper.
Cooper had a death grip on that tennis ball and believe me, no one was going to take it away from him.

Finally, this is Caroline.
Her close-up doesn’t do her justice. This is how I first saw her, under the table.
She’s a four-pounder. About one third the size of my cats!

The shopping? Good. Nineteen bucks good. There was all that paper, and from the same sale a pair of wooden shoes.
I plan to plant flowers in them for my front porch. I know, I have no shame.

A DVD to replace a vhs tape.

Adorable little framed picture, about 5 x 6 inches. Looks vintage but has a tag on the back with a barcode. Still cute though.

An addition to my collection of vintage ceiling glass.

A bunch o’ magazines.

The Vegetarian Times came from the sale of a woman who mentioned she’s a research chef. I've never heard of such, so I asked her about it. She said she works with various manufacturers. She gets an idea for a product, gets a manufacturer to work with her to develop it, and then sells them to Trader Joe’s. Apparently she designed all of TJ’s frozen enchiladas and a bunch of other stuff. Who knew such a job existed? If you eat Trader Joe’s enchiladas, I'm sure you’ll be glad to know she was a very nice lady.

Also at her sale, I found one of the things I'm always looking for and rarely find. An Yixing teapot.
This one came with a warmer and four cups.
The price was right on the set, so even though I really only wanted the pot I took it all. She still had all the boxes they had come in; evidently she never used the pots or cups. When I got them home, my husband, who also enjoys a good teapot, noted that they don’t really go together. We looked at the warmer, then at each other, and grinned. He went in the other room and brought back his favorite Yixing pot, that I gave him about ten years ago.
Pretty darned good match.

I was not similarly tempted by this teapot set.

The mouse on the cat's head is a cream pitcher. Call me old fashioned, but I would not care to drink something that had been poured out of this face.

Money wise, my last buy was the most incredible. Two rolls of beautiful fabric. I'm thinking maybe bedspreads from this:

And I admit I have no idea what to use this for
but a whole roll of crewel embroidered fabric with Australian animals cavorting across it was not going home with anyone but me!
Both rolls have many, many layers of fabric on them.

I'll leave you with this lady. Had to take a picture of her enjoying her hat.
Asked if it's actually her birthday and she said no. “But it is my birthday month. I’m practicing for the big day. And it was fifty cents. Isn’t Saturday morning just the best?”

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