Monday, June 27, 2016

Home of the Tiny, Land of the Free

Oh dear. It sounds terrible to say I brought home 23 things from yard sales this weekend. If you told me you brought home 23 items I would totally be picturing your home as piled to the ceilings with narrow paths winding through the tottering stacks. We haven’t reached that stage of hoarding, rest assured.

Of course I do have 14 foot high ceilings in the living room. If I ever 
start actually hoarding I have plenty of room to go up.

But we’re not there yet. And much of the new-to-me stuff is small. And 40% of it was free!

Went out on Friday with KK, meandering through South Salem. Then on Saturday my SIL Linda & I hit the 31st annual neighborhood sale in the Eastmoreland area of Portland. We aren’t sure we ever found most of the sales; we neglected to get hold of their map and may have just penetrated the outskirts. It was more an exercise in gawping at the gorgeous houses and landscaping. I managed to spend $3.50 up there, and she shelled out a big old two bucks.

Not bad for a morning of laughs.

The single most expensive item this weekend was a pair of Laurel Burch earrings for $2. 

The largest item this weekend was a white Corningware dinner plate. Sorry, no picture, it was just too plain to bother! Heavy white plate that can be microwaved, useful when dining on leftovers which we do VERY regularly. I shelled out a big old fifty cents there. Didn’t take a picture of the handful of padded envelopes from a free box either. “Everything on that side of the driveway, just take,” said the guy. As he said it he picked up more things from the ‘pay’ side of the driveway and moved them to the ‘free’ side. I helped myself to a nice cache pot. 

I picked out four movies priced at a dollar each at one sale 

then noticed a Pyrex refrigerator dish nearby. I offered four bucks for everything, so that makes the vintage Pyrex free. 

I think it was the same sale that had these wildflower seeds in their free box. 

They’re a few years old, but gardeners are hopeful folks. And some seeds can germinate after years of waiting. (Like this one, or this.) I scattered what was left in the nearly-full box on my cutting garden beds and my fingers are crossed that something may sprout. 

Even if they don’t I got a good laugh from the information on the box. “Shady Garden” it proclaims, but every single one of the varieties I checked had full sun in the description. 

Speaking of my cutting garden (a new venture this year), the first bloom has opened. 

I would have resisted this cute baby dish if the price hadn’t been fifty cents. 

The woman selling it shook her head when I paid for it. “That’s what I get for letting my granddaughter help price things,” she said.

“I wouldn’t have bought it if it wasn’t fifty cents,” I told her. She seemed astonished.  “It’s worth about twenty dollars,” she said. I figure if that's what it's worth, she could have changed the price at any time. My fifty-cent deal is now hanging out with Hansel and Gretel down in the children’s literature room.

KK was the one who spotted these Christmas linens. “Oh, my parents picked those up on a trip to Denmark back in 1971,” the gray-haired guy commented. 

There are six little napkins or coasters that I believe illustrate various Hans Christian Andersen tales 

and a small runner. Designed by Aase and Preben JangaardHmmm, maybe these should go in the children’s lit room too. 

This fun switchplate cover was another free box find.

A regular cover wrapped with paper. Now all I need to find is a double switch in my house…I think they’re all singles or triples!
I actually have low expectations of this cork wine stopper, based on customer comments on Amazon.

But for fifty cents (not ten bucks!) I can try it out. This pink dachshund pen from the same sale is for a friend. (And I'm sure she knows who she is!) 

Linda found a gift for me at one sale, so I'm counting it among the freebies. A tiny bunny. 

Even though it's intended as an ornament, I think he’ll be fine hanging out with the other bunnies in my office. 

Scooter Bunny will be happy to take him for a ride. 

My last fifty cent buy was a trio of what are probably actually shot glasses, but look like little vases to me. 

One has a tiny chip on the lip, so it's going up in the window display of colored glass.

Another is helping these coleus sprigs sprout roots. A lady gave them to me Saturday when I admired her plant. 

Another lady gave me a handful of succulent pieces from the groundcover in her yard. 

“Stand back,” she said. “It grows like crazy.”

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

It Must Be Summer!

Other people may be able to tell when summer has come by the calendar or the weather. But for me (and I bet for you), it’s when the neighborhood sales start—that glorious time of year when there are more yard sales than you can possibly get to. The trick is just to enjoy the ones you do attend, and not go thinking about what might have been at the ones you missed. No good ever comes from those might-have-beens!
And truly, my loot from last weekend was satisfying enough for any mortal. Started out on Thursday with a gigantic rummage sale at one of the downtown churches. It rivaled the one back in March  (not the Methodist sale, the other one!) for sheer insanity of number of items and people. And I was pretty unimpressed with their prices, though I understand they lowered them on Saturday. But this was Thursday. Call me old fashioned, but four bucks for a crappy used t-shirt? Nope. 
But I think I found the one genuine bargain in the place. I battled my way back to the corner with books, and noticed a box with a sign that said “Magazines - 5¢ Each.” I peeked, and saw a copy of Threads. (For you non-sewists, it's a sewing magazine from the same publisher as Fine Gardening, Fine Cooking, & Fine Woodworking. No, I do not know why they didn't name it Fine Sewing!) I started digging and pulled out a few copies, then a few more, then I pulled out several issues of something else and saw that the entire rest of the box wasThreads.
So I picked up the box…which weighed a ton! Sheesh, magazines are SO darned heavy. Had to wait in line, practically panting from holding that box. But I knew if I put it down I’d never get it picked up again. Finally got to the cashier, who blinked at the number of issues in the box. I started counting them and when I got to ten, she took a quick look at the size of that stack, pondered the rest of the box, and charged me three bucks for all of them. Then she found me a teenage boy to carry them to my car, which was even better than the good price. (He liked my convertible.)
When I got home I started counting and sorting—72 issues in all! They go from issue #3 (back in 1986) into 2008, and include many issues I've never seen before. Can't wait to dig in to all those articles!

Friday morning, KK and I headed down to Albany to be at the front of the line for an estate sale that promised art supplies (she’s an award winning painter and is always looking for reasonably priced supplies). Alas, the art stuff was way over priced, but I fell prey to the charms of this guy.
Poor baby apparently had an encounter with a puppy, but I'm planning to replace that ear. I believe he’s one of the reproductions they were importing from China back in the Eighties, but he’s still a mighty sweet bear.

He looks better already after a little cleaning and floofing. 
Fortunately, that estate sale was not the only game in town. There was also a neighborhood sale, so we made our way around that. There were a lot of participants but neither of us found much; I think a lot of annual sales get played out after a few years. But I did pick up a birthday gift 

still sporting its original price tag from back in (probably) the Seventies. I checked an inflation calculator and that would be about $66 today. (Bobs only become more valuable with the passage of time, right?) Found a couple of DVDs for the collection

and a baggie with bits of embellishment for a buck. 

Then behind a tent set up for shade on the driveway I spotted this.


Teak. Vintage—they purchased it in 1979 at the Scan Design store in Corvallis. And exactly what I was looking for. We’re finally fixing up our family room/home theatre and need something to put all the electronics on. I called the hubs and ascertained that the shelves are big enough for the DVD player etc., then handed over $50. I know, that’s a chunk o’ cash for me, but a really good deal on teak. And we were even able to get it into KK’s SUV for the trip home (after eating the best French fries I've ever had in my life at a local restaurant).

Saturday morning I had to take the hubs up to Portland to the airport, and checked Craigslist before I left to see if there were any sales in our neighborhood to cruise on my way home. Sure enough there were three. At the first I picked up some rainy day fun. 

The one on the street below my house yielded this darling little table. The wood is a close color match for our teak pieces, though I doubt that it's made of that. For $3 I'm fine with whatever kind of wood it is. 

And the sale on the street above my house (yes, we live on a hill!) gave me two things I absolutely love. First I found this vintage embroidery, which was a completed kit called “Girls, Girls.” 

Aren’t they wonderful? 

Then I spotted this 30” tall Christmas tree made of spools and little wooden ornaments.
I'm guessing it's from Germany. Every single figure is different! 

A few need to be glued back on. 

Including the skunk! 

They say money can't buy happiness, but oh yes it can, and it doesn’t even take much. Tree made of red wooden spools with little wooden figures including a tiny wooden skunk…for three dollars?

Made me happy! And if that's not enough, Mrs. Wilberforce loves the box!

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