Sunday, September 3, 2017


Oh, the drama!

KK & I were waiting to pay for our bits and pieces at an estate sale Friday when we became aware that Something was going on. Loud voices, argumentative tones. The folks running the sale were asking a woman where the white bag she’d been carrying was and had it been paid for. She denied a white bag; someone said they saw her carry it to her car. No, no white bag in my car. One of the sale employees went with her to look. Found the white bag full of stuff in her car, brought it back.

Now, if this had been me carrying off unpaid goods and I’d been caught, I would have just gotten in my car and driven away at this point. But no, she returned with the employee and the bag, still protesting her innocence, claiming now that she had paid already. But this particular company has only one person who adds up your total, so she sees everything that goes by. And she knew she had not totaled up the items in the white bag, which as she pulled them out came to something in the neighborhood of a couple hundred bucks. She patiently totaled it all, and the wannabe-shoplifter said she had to go to her car and ask her boyfriend if he had paid. And off she went, this time to drive away.

Drama over, we paid for our stuff and got back in KK’s car. And realized we were both wiped out by the whole thing! We must be living awfully peaceful lives when just witnessing this contretemps was too much for us!

Being a holiday weekend the sales were pretty skimpy, and that estate sale was our biggie of the day. I managed to spend six bucks there; my loot included a baggie with a dozen prefilled bobbins (handy if you sew). I discovered when I got home not one of them fit my sewing machine. Dang.

More useful will be this fun pot. 

Previously employed to hold pens (I've deduced this from the large ink stain in the bottom), 

now destined to grow kitty grass for Millie. I've sown it with wheat berries, should be sprouting in a few days. She will be a happy kitty.

Less practical but most amusing is a new addition to the bird section of the Museum de Me: a marabou-feathered chick with a crown.

We stopped at half a dozen other sales; at one I found an addition to the vases-over-the-windows collection (which has now surged past the dining area and around a corner heading for the living room).

Our last stop netted a conversation about their lovely blooming roses and how they had been languishing, but after a severe pruning are better than ever. Plus I picked up a baggie full of bits and pieces of jewelry.

I figured that for a buck, there had to be enough here to play with. I’ve had fun this past week making  a couple of pieces of textile jewelry, including this necklace using some of last week’s swag 

(the gold disks are from the tangled necklace) and scraps of linen.

I want to do  more, and of course it's always a hoot to dig into one of these grab bags (grab baggies?). Some items, alas, will go straight into the box for the thrift store. 

Beads might inspire something interesting in combination with something I already have. 

At first I didn’t think I'd keep the pair of rhinestoned birds (two separate but identical pins), but I'm starting to get a glimmer of a way to use them. 

Possibly for something slightly macabre, because those red eyes make me think of cartoon vultures!

I'm sure this little pin has a story. 

It's pure gimcrack, with a guy’s name engraved on the hearts with one of those hand-engravers. I’m imagining it was a prize at the county fair that some boy won on the midway and gave to his sweetheart. They broke up a few months later, but she kept the little pin in her keepsake box for the next fifty-seven years, until her niece was helping her pack to move to assisted-living and stuffed a whole handful of what she considered junk into a baggie to sell at their next yard sale.

Could have been that way. What’s your idea for a back story?

Completely hidden among the other items was a necklace. When I pulled it out, I liked the spiral design of the chain. 

It was quite dirty, but I discerned printing on the clasp. My super-duper magnifying glass (the lens from an old filmstrip projector) allowed me to read that it was made in Milan, Italy and is sterling silver! 

So I tried the aluminum foil/baking soda/boiling water silver-cleaning method, and it got way shinier. 

Someone has a matching bracelet for sale on Etsy for $45…but I think I'll stick with my approximately 10¢ necklace!


  1. I love the pink nose pot so much!

  2. I've seen so many people steal from yard sales (even when I host them....I roll my eyes and figure they need it more than I need the money and its their conscience anyway). I guess I will never understand that. I guess peaceful lives are a blessing.

    1. I know, give me the peaceful life every time! I was once at a sale where they had just realized that a couple had stolen an overstuffed easy chair from them!

  3. My son makes brooch bouquets to sell so I am always on the hunt for bag/broken jewelry.

    1. OMG, I just looked those up - fabulous! I hope you haven't started a new obsession for me!

  4. Where did you get the seeds to grow wheat grass for your kittie. We have a kittie that eats the spider plant and barfs every single time. It's time to redirect those munchies to something his delicate system can tolerate! Thank you in advance.

    We had someone steal a really ugly pendant and earring set at our garage sale. I was glad to see it go, but really...!!!

    1. I get wheat kernels or groats at our local grocery store (Winco) in the bulk section. I'm sure any health food store would have them in bulk if your regular store doesn't. I tried both wheat and oat groats and the wheat seemed to sprout better. The beauty of buying them in bulk is being able to get small amounts for next to nothing.

      I wonder if you acted like you were really guarding your ugliest stuff if that would encourage yard sale thieves to take those things...

    2. We live in a dinky town, so our grocery store doesn't have a bulk section. We don't have a health food store either. But, we do have a slew of fast food restaurants and at least 5 car wash places. Seriously. 5 car wash places! We are lucky, though, to have quite a few thrift, consignment and antique in town and the surrounding area.

    3. I've lived in towns just like yours! We felt so lucky when we moved here and found that the cheapest grocery store has the most amazing bulk section you've ever seen.

  5. It's so exciting when you come across a piece of sterling silver like that! Yours is fabulous - good eye! One of my favourite pieces of jewellery is a lovely polished stone (agate perhaps) heart suspended on quite a long sterling chain. I love it dearly. It cost me 89₵.


I really love your comments. Thanks for coming along on my thrifty adventures!

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