Sunday, November 10, 2013


Someone has started posting ads on our local Craigslist reviewing the various sales they go to. Okay, not so much reviewing as taking the ones they don’t like to task. I’ve seen several where they tell you that such-and-such sale is full of crap, or that it’s supposed to be an estate sale but obviously is not. Or that somebody running a sale is really rude. Having been to some of the sales they’ve critiqued, I have to admit they were spot on, though sometimes harsher than I thought necessary.

For instance, there was a sale in town this weekend that said it was a fund raiser. Their photos on the Craigslist ad showed lots of stuff, so I headed over there. Wasn’t as fabulous as the pics made me hope, but I found a couple of things and the folks were nice. But the Yard Sale Reviewer criticized them on C’list for not identifying who or what they were raising funds for. I had the impression it was a church group, and didn’t care anyway. After all, for five bucks I took away this nice pot

embossed cache pot

for my new cyclamen that I picked up at Trader Joe’s this week. (The lady in front of me in the checkout line said the one she got last winter bloomed for eight months, so I thought I’d give it a try.)

Bloomis for winter

Plus a mint Erzgebirge nutcracker.

Erzgebirge SantaIf Santa were a soldier

Did you ever see such a militaristic Santa? I fell in love with his hat with the wooden pompom.

Santa's Ergebirge hat

Plus, a warm overcoat in my size. The fabric felt so nice when I picked it up I had to hunt for the content label. Sure enough – wool and cashmere, in perfect condition.

Wool & cashmere overcoat

I can hardly wait for real winter weather. Okay, yes I can, but I’ll be ready for it. the brand is one sold at Nordstrom's, so the original owner probably paid a pretty penny.

Kristen Blake label

And if it turns out I don’t use the coat much, Noll Baxter assures me he’d love to have it for a cat bed.

Cashmere makes a nice cat bed

So the YSR may have been overly cranky here. But I thought they had a point with another of their critiques about an estate sale down the hill from my house: 

This is a family sale that was picked over before and the leftovers are ridiculously priced. Worse than that, they lied in their posting. They listed jewelry and I sat there for three hours waiting for the sale to open...only to discover that there is no jewelry. I hate liars, misrepresenters, and overpricers. Don't waste your time with this hard to get to sale.

It was definitely hard to get to. When I arrived I had to park a block or so away, and met some people coming down the quite steep lane to the sale. They told me the sellers were only letting in eight people at a time and there was a really long line, so I left and went back later. It was indeed an estate sale being run by the family, and the daughter of the house didn’t really want to part with anything. I don’t know about the jewelry, but overpriced, for sure. Even though it was in a pretty cool mid-century modern house (original appliances in the kitchen, ceiling tiles printed with starburst designs, light fixtures that would look SO much better in my MCM house!)

MCM kitchen lightMCM dining room light

the people running the sale had such attitude that I was decidedly cranky when I left. No, I did not write that ad. But you know that because you know I’d never wait three hours to look at some jewelry!

Personally I think the YSR missed the boat on the weirdest sale out there. I admit their ad was clear that it was the second weekend of their sale but promised they had brought in many more items. If I had remembered exactly which place it was from the week before I’d never have returned. But I did.

Both times, the supposed houseful of items was a couple of pieces of furniture inside (where grandma was making her breakfast as people trooped through the kitchen) and some framed art prints. Out in the crowded garage people asked the middle age woman taking money about prices on the mostly-unmarked items. She quickly became flustered and her language quite peppered with four-letter words (pretty unusual around here – at least in public). Another woman and I exchanged glances over the tatty vases and used clothing. “I don’t think I’d put her in charge of the money,” she murmured.

I was mentally kicking myself for returning as soon as I headed up their driveway and realized where I was. But I was there, so I looked around. Maybe they did bring in more stuff, but if anything their prices had gone up from the week before. Another shopper said something to me about being sorry for the ruckus she had raised, which I had missed. She thought the price marked on an old doll was fifty cents – and it was supposed to be fifty bucks. I guess the cashier had been pretty snippy.

There was a nice kitty demonstrating the linens

 Handsome neighbor kitty 

but it wasn’t even their cat and had wandered over from a neighbor’s house. I was on my way out when I spotted a little midcentury cream pitcher and picked it up.

Iroquois leaf creamer

Of all their overpriced merchandise, this was the only really cool piece there – and it was marked twenty-five cents.

Iroquois china Ben Seibel creamerCreamer label          

So now it’s mine. And I’m never going back to their house again!


  1. Replies
    1. It is! And I probably do sound as snarky as the person leaving the posts on Craigslist!

  2. I really mean to keep my list of garage sales from previous weeks so I'll know that I went. Maybe even checkmark the awful ones! And, let's face it, some are just awful. If you have a moment check out my 'finds' of Saturday. Sadly the season is at an end now. AND that coat? Perfect for a cold winter.

    1. I added a page to my spreadsheet where I record all my finds. On it is a list of 'Do Not Return' addresses - those places that keep having sales and you forget you've been there before. It's already saved me some driving!

  3. It is a nice pitcher! And to me, the person that does the reviews must have WAY too much time on their hands to wait around for 3 hours to look at jewelry! Just my humble opinion! I love reading your stories! ~~Pam

    1. Thanks Pam! I agree about the too much time on their hands. Maybe they passed the time away by writing Craigslist ad on their iphone or something.

      The only thing I can remember I've ever waited for like that was my dog Possum. I was so excited to get my new puppy I arrived way, way too early, terribly afraid that someone else might get her. Nearly froze my buns off sitting in the car that morning, but I got my wonderful puppy!

  4. I SO love reading about your adventures!!

    I think that darling little creamer is well-worth the aggravation. Ben Seibel! I have a couple in this shape - lovely!

  5. Oh!!! And that coat!!!

    Our Piper (also a friend of the feline variety) would appreciate it too! Unfortunately, he probably would have chewed (sucked?) a couple a sizable holes in it by now. Even if it was hung up, he would ferret it out, climb up on it and swing on it until it fell. It's a good thing we love him.

    1. Sounds like Piper maybe left his mama too soon. Or else he just likes to suck on cashmere. Or maybe he was a moth in his last life?

      I'm just envious of anyone with more than one Ben Seibel creamer.

    2. Piper's love of wool/cashmere is an absolute mystery as we know for a fact that he was with his mother for plenty of time. His littermate, Luna, doesn't seem to do it. (and there were just the 2 of them so it wasn't like he had to compete for the mother's resources)

      The only explanation - along with the explanation for all his other horrid behaviours is that - to put it simply...........he is a VERY BAD CAT!!!!!!!

    3. Ahhh. Well. He's obviously close kin to our Noll Baxter then!

  6. I love your kitty model and the MCM scores! I haven't been estate/yard saling in earnest in so long I forgot about the occasional drama. I don't know how or why but I can just never let it bother me in the slightest no matter how rude people are. I guess I'm having too much fun hunting and know I have too much to do to list it as soon as I get home to waste my thoughts on them. o_O Even when someone is directly super rude to me for some reason, it just rolls right off without me caring in the slightest. Guess it's a bonus.

  7. Love your blog and read it weekly; had just read this entry and 20 minutes later found this and thought of you!

    1. I'm honored to be thought of when you see cool dishes! I went and looked at that set and drooled for a bit. Hopefully I will find more pieces along the way, but I'm going to want them in the same price range as my little creamer!


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

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