Sunday, June 2, 2013

Rocks and Socks and Rockers

Friday was Cute Little Kid Day on the yard sale trail.

Picked up Judy and we headed for the ATM. Her credit union is a ways off, so she was going to see about using my bank’s machine and just pay the fee…but it was a whole two dollars. “Stop,” I said. “We’ll be going by yours later, and I’ll spot you until then. Two bucks is eight cashmere sweaters!” Back in the car she counted the handful of change in her purse – just about a dollar. We were good to go. At our second stop we had to admire the adorable baby girl standing on a lady’s lap and talking up a storm…in her own private language. Yes, she was at that stage where it sounds like a baby is really talking, but it’s just the sounds and not real words yet. This little one is going to be quite verbal! I told her to make sure mommy and daddy read lots of books to her, and her mom just beamed as she told me the baby is always bringing them books to read. “Good job,” I told the little girl. “It’s good to be cute, but it’s even better to be smart.” She babbled in agreement. Wise child!

We noticed this rack of…metal thingies for sale.

Mystery bits

What are these? we inquired. They said they didn’t know either, and were hoping someone would come along and tell them. Are they router bits? (Not that I’m all that clear on what one does with router bits.) Here’s your chance to enlighten me. What are these – and should I have bought them?

We pressed on. Another couple we chatted with were glad to be clearing out some stuff, but said they couldn’t wait to get back to going to sales next weekend. We all agreed that it’s just fun to poke through other people’s stuff!

And speaking of fun…one reason it’s so much fun to go garaging with Judy is, she is game to try on anything – and let me take a picture! I think these cat ears are awfully becoming, don’t you?

Judy as Cat

There were a couple of pairs of shoes at this sale that she liked the look of, and the lady having the sale noticed she was wearing sandals and offered a pair of socks from the ones they were selling, since shoes often slip on more easily with a sock. She grabbed a pair. Alas, the shoes were a bit small, but she loved the socks and bought those! I glanced at the socks for sale at a quarter a pair, and as soon as I picked these up, knew they were mine.

Cashmere socks

I’m pretty sure they are cashmere, or at least a cashmere blend!

Our next stop was nearly finished, and there was a good reason – it was a free garage sale. I’d noticed their ad on Craigslist that morning, that everything would be free. “We were nearly wiped out in the first half hour,” the lady told us.”I wanted my kids to experience how much fun giving can be.” Judy found something she could use, a couple of boxes of baby wipes that she’ll use to clean off puppy paws after Buddy the Springer has been out in the dirt. We chatted for a few minutes, and I admired the landscaping, including the blooming day lilies. Her little boy, age seven, walked right over to the Stella d’Oros, picked a blossom, and presented it to me.

Day lily bloom

What a charmer! About then another couple arrived, and the man noticed a baseball helmet. “Is this for T-ball?” he asked. “My daughter is seven and she’s starting to play.” So the resident seven-year-old modeled it for him, and he happily went off with it. “My daughter’s team only has a couple of helmets between them. This is great!”

At our last stop, the young woman having the sale was wearing one of those front baby carriers…with no baby in it. But he was nearby, watching everyone from a baby seat in the shade of the garage. Another charmer! He cooed and smiled and giggled. One of those babies you just can’t imagine ever crying. Kind of wanted to send the mom over to the baby girl’s house we’d been to earlier. It just seemed like those two tots would have a ball together.

Saturday I got a pretty early start because there was a neighborhood sale not far from home. It promised 15 homes, but I think a few had changed their minds. Or maybe I missed a street, which is perfectly possible. I chatted for a few minutes with a lady I remember talking to last year, when she was the sale’s organizer. Since then she’s gone through 6 rounds of chemo and gotten rid of cancer! She pulled off her hat to show off her cute very short hair. “I admit I was really upset about losing it at first, but then I realized that was the least of my worries,” she told me. I said that maybe it’s good to have something like that to focus on for a while, so  you don’t get overwhelmed by the medical stuff. She told me she’d gone to a support group, but everyone there was moaning and groaning. “When it was my turn to introduce myself, I said my name is Carol and I USED to have cancer! I never went back, they were just too gloomy.” She said the worst part these days is having big holes in her memory; it takes quite a while to get all those drugs gone from your system. So I told her my friend Marcia’s idea about memory. She says she can remember anything until she takes a step, and then it’s all gone. So clearly, it is our feet that are the problem, not our heads!

Around the corner I found this.

Starburst clock Starburst clock back

These starburst clocks are so popular these days, I don’t believe I’ve ever seen one for sale on a driveway. I’m sure the dollar price was because of the missing piece, though the lady said she had it somewhere in the house and promised to call me when she finds it. (My fingers are crossed.) One just like it, with the same missing piece, sold a while back on Etsy for something like $30!

I left the neighborhood sale and set the GPS for the others I’d charted. Didn’t care so much for the guy who described to me the horrible death I can expect via my convertible. Of course it’s possible. I intend to just focus on all the fun I’ll have along the way! The two ladies at his sale were rather nicer, and I bought ten balls of lovely New Zealand wool yard. Now I just have to decide what to make and see how rusty my knitting skills are.

Yarn from down under

Across the street, I couldn’t resist taking pictures of their neighbor’s yard art. Is this fun or what?

plate-flower fencePlate-flowers

I got to another sale as someone was leaving, and the family was chuckling about their oldest little boy (probably another seven-year-old) selling a rock. There were a couple of younger kids, and the middle one, about four, said he wanted to sell a rock too. I noticed there was lots of gravel by the drive, so I pulled out a penny and asked him to pick out a rock for me. He took quite a while selecting one, but the youngest kept handing me pebbles. I ended up with a whole handful of quartz!

A penny's worth of rocks

I drove past the next sale and had to turn around, and as I headed for a parking spot I noticed a woman standing by the curb. That woman looks just like Judy, I thought. And that’s who it was! She had been to the neighborhood sale, then spotted this one on her way home. Right away she picked up a very nice Woolrich sweater that fit perfectly.

Judy's new sweater

The price was fifty cents, so what could I do but buy it for her? We checked out everything, and soon she was trying out being an angel.

Angelic Judy

When we left that sale, I talked her into coming with me to the last two on my list and we’d come back for her car. I’m awfully glad she came along because she was the one who spotted these weights, which were on my list. (Can you tell which one I’ve cleaned up?)

5 lb weights

And at our last stop she modeled another hat!

Judy as Leopard

My goodness, I just realized I left out my big buy of the day. I think it was the stop before I encountered Judy. Walked up the drive and noticed a chair that looks to be from the Fifties. Certainly that Early American fabric was popular then!

Midcentury rocking chair Midcentury rocker back

It’s a rocker, and very comfortable. But what I really fell in love with was the feet.

Midcentury rocker feet

They remind me of that iconic Noguchi coffee table.


The price was marked ten bucks, I offered five, and we settled on seven. I figured when I arrived home that the hubs would be asking me where I plan to put it, but he surprised me by falling in love with it right off. It definitely needs a new bottom cushion; the foam has ossified. I thought for a moment it might be stuffed with straw, it’s so crackly. And the fabric is definitely not us. I’m thinking perhaps a beige linen with darker brown piping. Will keep you posted!



  1. Well, you certainly had a busy and fun-filled yard sale day, didn't you? We went to a couple and took my dad with us. I think he enjoyed himself. He wanted to find a video of Shirley Temple for my granddaughter and was overjoyed when he actually did find one! Yard sales are great, aren't they?

    1. Wow! I'm always amazed by people who decide they want some item and find it THAT weekend at a sale!

  2. Oh I fell in love with the chair also. Great deal!

    1. It will be perfect to sit in when I knit whatever I make with that brown yarn!

  3. I would have bought the wool....
    Our neighbourhood sale is this saturday....9-1. 27 houses signed up so far

  4. Great finds! Was the fence art made from dish ware or something else....?

    1. Yes, plates and cups and such. Next time you're up here I'll try to find it again to show you!

  5. what a great day!! I really am inspired by the yard art with the plates and bowls!
    Have been working in the yard, and trying to clean more stuff out of the house rather than bring in this week.... I will ask john about the gizmos.

  6. John says that they are for bits for carving, "milling," metal. probably very heavy, otherwise they would be cool to hang by wire from your whirligigs.

    1. Thanks for the info...I admit I was kind of tempted by them, but I'm really trying to be good about not buying too much on spec!


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

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