What is a monkeybox? When I was a little girl, we had a pet monkey named Amanda. My Dad worked in the produce business, so each night he brought home that days culls in a big box - spotty cucumbers, pithy apples, limp celery, moldy oranges and the like. We called it a monkeybox. It was really just trash, but my Mom would take each piece of fruit and trim it, pare it and cut it up to make a beautiful fruit platter for Amanda. Even though it was deemed trash by one, it still had life left in it and was good for the purpose we needed it. That's how I live my life - thrifting, yard saling, looking for another's trash to be my treasure.
*Those are my Great Grandparents up there. My Great Grandma was the original Martha Stewart. She threw a great party and decorated for every holiday. I want to be her when I grow up. Oh wait! I am!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

A Swap or Three and Lots of Happy Mail

The Breadman and I quit buying presents for each other a long time ago.  Well, that's not completely true, I usually get him a Razorback T-shirt or a package of socks (I AM SO THOUGHTFUL!) because I feel bad if he doesn't get something.  Not getting presents from him doesn't really bother me because he says he doesn't  have a clue what to get me.  Which is pretty funny that after 26 years of knowing each other he truly doesn't have a clue what I like or what to get me. But, it is sadly very true.   I also don't mind any gifts from him because almost every single day for the past week I have received the most incredible boxes of Happy Mail and a few swaps that have just delighted me beyond words.  It's almost bordering on ridiculous the amount of love and fuzzy feelings I have had this past week.

I joined in on a Vintage Christmas Swap on Instagram.  It was different because we weren't allowed to make contact with the person we were sending our package to plus we would be receiving a package from a completely different person.  I didn't have the highest hopes for this swap since it was kind of an unknown thing - but it turned out great!

I got a set of bubble lights, two great vintage pine cone themed trays and that AWESOME Santa candy container.  I thought it was funny that he had tennis rackets on his feet.  HA.  They are snowshoes - but I really DID think they were tennis rackets!  Can you tell I am not accustom to much snow?  The person I sent to seemed really pleased with what I sent her, so that made me happy too.

A few blog entries back I showed a set of Christmas curtains that I had thrifted and Kim commented that she loved them.  Since I had no real plans for them, I suggested a little swap between us.  I sent her the curtains, a necklace that I made and something else - so I was just expecting a tiny bit of a swap.  

But, instead, this big box chock full of vintage goodness arrived and I was stunned!  Hand made goodies, vintage Christmas and the HOLY GRAIL - a tablecloth!  So many sweet thoughtful things. Thank you Kim!  

Last week a box arrived from my friend Sue.  We have been friends forever and she is always sending me sweet things.  She rescued a couple watermelon potholders and sent them to a GOOD HOME.  There was also CHOCOLATE, a lovely necklace, a sweet little Santa and a vintage Christmas apron which I quickly added to my collection.  Thank you Sue!

Okay are you still with me on this?

Yesterday a big heavy box arrived from my friend Chanelle who reads this blog and is active on IG. 

She knows all the things I love and collect and is always on the lookout at the thrifts in  the Chicago area for me.  She shares all her flea market-y magazines with me and then I pass them on to Lara (who actually KNOWS Chanelle from Chicago).  She found several of the souvenir ashtrays I love so much, vintage birthday party napkins, vintage Santa sleigh cake decorations, a tiny card holder with clothespins, a funny Santa and..............

Nine......NINE...strands of glass garland.  Yards and yards of it.  I have never seen so much of it at once in my life!  She told me to try to sell it at one of my shows.  Uh.  No thank you.  I shall keep it forever and ever and ever.  :)  Thank you Chanelle!

Hang on, I'm almost done, except this one is a BEAUT.  

I asked on here if anyone wanted to do a Vintage Christmas Swap and a few signed up.  I tossed the names in a hat and wound up swapping with Marci.  Marci came and sold at the last Junk Ranch so I had the opportunity to actually meet her.  She is great and we have a great love of junk and the same sort of collections.  Her house is fantastic!

My mouth was agape at the HUGE box that arrived and the gorgeous contents that spilled out.  

I am a total sucker for packaging and making each little thing look like a jewel on it's own.  Marci is an EXCELLENT wrapper uppper.  Everything was gorgeous!  

She recently blogged about buying "Kick Ass Boots" on Black Friday  - so she sent me stuff IN her Kick ass boots box  I got a chuckle out of that.  :D

She made me my very own stocking!  Out of chenille!  I love it!!!!!

And, inside the stocking - a huge Christmas-y plaid Thermos.  

She sent me an Annalee cat as a reminder of my sweet Little Lady we recently lost.  I was oohing and ahhing over my vintage stuff and then I was bawling like a baby.  So sweet.  Lord, I miss that baby girl.

A vintage Christmas light box.  This has been the ONE vintage package that has eluded me all these years.  I have NEVER found a Light box.  And, then BAM - her one is in my hand.  Love those lights too  - the red beads are a nice touch.  

So, you are thinking - "Wow! That's a lot - how nice of her!"  Well, silly, you have only seen the TIP of the iceberg!


Candy containers, spun heads, a kneehugger, a coloring book, a bottle brush tree, a vintage tin and on and on and on.  

And on and on and on.  

Old Spun Glass Angel Hair  - are you KIDDING ME?

That elf in a SHOE?  Come ON!

And a tiny box full of wee spun heads and glittered boots and teeny jingle bells and a CORSAGE and so much other fun, fun stuff.  I was really just amazed at all the goodness in that box.  *Also there were a bunch of Sea Salt Caramels and Candy Canes that I have hidden and will NOT be sharing with anyone.....'cause - CARAMELS!  Thank you so, so much Marci!

So, see?  I feel like I have already had the BEST Christmas EVER.  What is better than vintage Christmas and the love from friends, blog friends and new friends?  Nothing, that's what.  

(((Hugs))) to all of YOU!

Monday, December 15, 2014

The Week in Junk: Freestyling

About an hour ago, I started feeling like I could hurl at any minute.  There must be a bug going around.  Wheeee.  Merry Christmas to me.  Let's see if I can get through this....

These are my finds from the weekend at that one yard sale and at my Super Cheap Thrift.   That's where I also got the doll house.  Let's see it one more time.

Oh, yea.....$2.00.  

*Happy Dance*
At the sale where everything was FREE:  I grabbed a box full of Christmas ornaments just because of the Santa mug on top.  I also found the slightly scary mni mug in there as well as the wooden ornaments.  The chunky wooden bangle is kind of fun and those measuring spoons?  I just saw a set of those in a catalog for $19.99!  They are for a "dash, pinch and smidgen".  Adorbs.  That blue Bundt pan made me decide to start collecting colorful Bundt pans BECAUSE I NEED ANOTHER COLLECTION.  *cough*  I do not need another collection, but I found that PINK one not long ago so now I see they come in all colors and I think they would look interesting along the soffit in the kitchen.  So, SEE?  I DO need them!  

This little clothespin dude was deemed a keeper.  I usually see figures made out of the old school peg clothespins.  He's pretty darned cute.  

This hand carved wooden spoon is just lovely.  I cannot imagine actually using it for anything though.  It reminds me of a Black Forrest Cuckoo clock, so I need to do a bit of research on it.  

See the acorns and leaves?  Isn't it kind of fabulous?

More free stuff:  Two nice lovely heavy old platters.  A dogwood vase and dogwood napkin rings, a small vase, tiny restaurantware bowl, fruit chalkware and a awesome blue deer pottery planter.  That I dropped and smashed into a hundred pieces as soon as I took this photo.  Wah.  It *was* adorable.   

This little Happy Birthday girl has a flaw on the other side of her book, but I think I can fix it somehow.  Isn't she just the cutest, though?  

Two big chalkware swans.  I hate these things.  I see them a lot and I NEVER buy them.  But, free is free and I BET they will sell in the booth.  They remind me of my husband's Mother which is just a bad memory within itself, plus I don't get the whole swan/goose thing.  (Except your cool sweet swan things, Laurie).  

All that stuff for free (I gave her $2.00 though) was a pretty good deal.  

On to the super cheap thrift where I got that dollhouse.

Let's see it again.


Had you going there.  

Wooden train, silly 1980's doll, a talking View Master (which is new to me) and a funny little old lady in a red car.  Not sure what her story is - but she's comical to me.

These seashell "HIS and "HERS" towel hangers are very very ugly and quite HUGE.  But, the price was right, so to the booth they will GO.  

A quartet of vintage snowmen, a couple of which I *think* have been in the eggnog. (I'm talking to you two middle guys...)  The middle two are keepers, the first one will most likely stay for this season and the last one will be packed until next year to be sold.  

Vintage corn S&P's for the booth and a great old wire letter basket.  I hoard those letter baskets like a crazy lady.  I can see nine of them right here in my office.  I do actually use them in here and in the booth and at shows to papers.  SO THERE!  

A vintage box of candles, two Starbucks mugs ( I sell Starbucks very quickly.  They go against my "I sell only vintage things" rule, but heck money is money!)  I was very excited to find the four Mercury Glass tapers and the lone gold glass taper.  The funny thing is, I already have four of them and I have never used them. But, every year I pull them out and adore them, then I pack them right back up. But, SOMEDAY, I will think of a genius way to use them.  Most likely in my MANSION.  Yes, that's it. My MANSION.  

Ok, I just had to throw in in here ONE MORE TIME.

Well, I think I might go throw up now.  

See you all another day.  

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Our House is a Very, Very Fine House

This morning I was drinking my coffee and looking at Craigslist and I saw that there were THREE yard sales in my tiny, tiny town.  And before you knew it, lickety split, I was dressed and on the prowl.  I never found the first one and the second one appeared to be a MANLY sale consisting of camo this and camo that so I didn't even stop.  I was going to just give up and go on out to my beloved Super Cheap Thrift, but I decided to double back and try to find the third sale.  As soon as I spotted the house, I recognized it as my favorite mail clerks Dad's house.  I pulled in and found tables and a trailer full of old stuff.  And it was cheap.  She said, "You should have come yesterday.  We had ten times this much."  Craaaaaap.  Then she told me that she quit the Post Office.  Double crap. She was my girl.  :(  Then she said, "Gather up what you want and just take it.  I'm done."  Uh, whut? So, I rummaged around and found a couple of small boxes of things and begged her to take some money.  She finally said one dollar and I said, "Take two".  That way, no guilt on my part when I sell some of it.  Besides, she was my Post Office girl - she KNOWS I sell junk.  So, now that I have told you all this and have you all in a tither - I don't have any photos YET.  Nothing was spectacular - but just enough stuff to make the middle of the winter NO yard sale doldrums go away.  (I will take photos in the light of day tomorrow.)

When I was done there, I headed on out to The Super Cheap Thrift.  In the past few years, that place has been as busy as Walmart on Christmas Eve - I mean it is PACKED this time of year.  So, I generally don't go as often as I would like to go due to the crowds and the fact that a lot of people are actually in there trying to buy things as presents for their kids.  I try not to take things away from people that need it.  But then again, they probably aren't really on the hunt for one pinecone elf or one one lone spun head.  So, I don't think I am taking Christmas from the children.  

But, then again.  Maybe I am.  

I walked by the toys area and sitting on the floor was this dollhouse.  I could only see the back where it is open, so I walked around to see the front.  that is when I realized it was solid wood and very well made.  Shake shingle roof, wood siding, front porch, etc.  Sure it was missing the door and a couple of window panes, a few pieces of trim and a piece of gingerbread along the roof.  I knew that could all be fixed.  But, could I afford it?

Sorry tiny girl that wrote Santa asking for a dollhouse this year.  
This old lady is buying it.  

I heaved it up and hauled it to the front counter and parked it by the register with a big SOLD sign on it.  When I paid for it the lady at the register said, with a high squeak, "THEY PRICED THAT TWO DOLLARS?"  Uh yea, be quiet......don't draw attention to it, lady.  

From the moment I saw it I envisioned it at The Junk Ranch holding old books and junk and being for sale as well.  Or in the booth up on the top shelf with a nice price on it.  Yep, it was a money maker for sure.

I brought it in the house and our house Minion Kevin took a tour.  

I cleaned it up and took it back outside and headed to the shed with it.  

BUT WAIT.  Those colors.  It looks sort of Christmas-y!

I set it on an old red metal shelf on the porch.  It looked l kind of bare, so I added some lights, a "blow-up" blowmold Santa and a tree.  Then I added Santa and the reindeer on the roof.  

And, just like that.  Something I never knew existed a few hours ago has now become one of my favorite things.  EVER.  And, all for $2.00.  Now, I ask you - how else can you have $2.00 worth of fun in this day and age?  

*(Do they still have those vibrating beds in hotels that run on quarters?  That's a fun $2.00.  But, I'd still take this dollhouse over that.  Sorry, Breadman)

Oh look!  I added a tree to the window.  I bet you a doughnut I have lights on the eaves before tomorrow night.  But, I could be wrong.  

Yes, I like it.  I like it A LOT.  

Two dollars!

Thanks Santa.

Sorry little girl. 

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Out and About and a Little Junk Too

Boy you guys were SO nice about my post yesterday.  I don't know what came over me, but it was on my mind, so I wrote about it.  I have unfriended family and friends, taken people of my blog list and just ended friendships because of these things.  Not because of WHAT they believed in or did not believe in but HOW they presented those beliefs.  Yes, the Golden Rule is what I follow.  And be nice and behave and on and on and on.  

Today is my Mom's birthday.  We were supposed to have a little party and go out to eat, but my power went off for three hours in the middle of the day which left my house a mess and me in a state of ugliness.  I had just made a mental list of what I needed to do - make a grilled cheese sandwich, vacuum, turn on my curling iron, put on my make up and toss the clothes in the dryer.  Do you know how many of those things you CAN'T do without power?  All of those things.  So, I sat in the dark all ugly and realized the Christmas tree was not perfectly centered in the window, so I rearranged it.  My Mom decided to come over tomorrow and we will PARTY it up and have cake and then go out to eat. 

Once the power came back on (a tree fell on a line somewhere) I suddenly had a huge desire to go thrifting.  My favorite thrift for Christmas stuff was calling to me.  I realized that I hadn't even been there since November 21st.  I must have missed SO much stuff!  I bet the shelves would be practically empty!   

I was wrong.  The store was packed with Christmas.  This is only one of eight aisles of ALL CHRISTMAS - plus the whole store has random Christmas stuff like trees and decorations strung everywhere.  It is kind of overwhelming to see so much at once.  But, I get into my vintage trance and start at the top of one shelf and just work my way through it all - one item at a time.  It's funny how I can see nineteen Santa's on a shelf, but the vintage face pops out at me.  I was there about an hour looking at everything.  

Here are my finds:  Two Santa mugs  - they aren't the really old ones like I collect, but they aren't new either.  I will save them until next year to sell.  I found one little choir boy and thought there might be another.  I found the second one two aisles over.  Then I decided there must be a third and low and behold, I found that one on a different aisle.  The two small candle holders have the cutest little Santa's on them.  They have old Walmart stickers on them  - like from the 1960's.  The round thing is an ornament with the "Night Before Christmas" inside.  You click a knob at the top and the pages flip.  It was just enough vintage to make me happy.  I stopped at one more thrift on my way home  - one I rarely ever go to because they never have much.  I spotted the old gathering basket full of red velvet ribbons. I asked if I could buy the basket and they said I could have it for a dollar.  SOLD. Ten dollars out of pocket, a basket full of vintage and a short mental vacation = a good day.  

One my way to and from home, I stopped to take a few photos of some of the places around me to share with you.  

I went up to Mt. Nord to look at the historic homes.  

Notice the Christmas tree on the second story and up on the roof? 

I love the porch on this house.  I think I would spend all my time out there.  Except when it's the middle of an Arkansas summer.  Air you can wear, you know.  

This one is my favorite.  It is so beautiful.  These houses overlook the city and are some of most elaborate older homes in Fayetteville.  

From huge home to tiny stores.  

The Curious Book Shoppe is the most divine tiny store.  It's quite long but not very wide as you can see.  I need to go peruse in there someday.  

And then back up the street to a beautiful church on world famous Dickson Street.  Fayetteville is such a wonderful town full of old beautiful places.  I love wandering around in my very own back yard.  

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

It Takes A Village

In the next big town over there was recently an ordinance put into place that promised that all people were to be treated equally and fairly.  ALL people.  Sounds like a great thing,  Right?  Kind of like putting a big WELCOME mat at the city limit sign  - "You are welcome here!"  Come on in!

But it got SO ugly.  People misunderstood it.  People put a negative spin on it.  Businesses refused to follow the ordinance.  People thought it meant SO many things that it did not.  I do not live in that town, but I shop there and spend most of my money and time there.  Plus, it is literally one mile from my front door.  It was brought to a re-vote and it the majority (52% to 48%) voted to repeal the ordinance.  So, the welcome mat is gone.  There is a bad taste in people's mouth.  It was supposed to be such a good thing.  It really was like a token anyway - shouldn't everyone be welcome everywhere anyway?  I think it will be rewritten and passed someday soon.  I hope so.  

I was actually thinking of all the things going on in the world and that ordinance and how much hate and intolerance there is towards SO many people.  Democrats vs. Republicans, Gay vs. Straight, Religion vs. Atheist, Police vs. Men, Men vs. Police and so, so much more.  I have had to un-friend so many Facebook friends and family.  I don't want to hear their hate on any level.  I've been writing this blog for fifteen years.  Am I Republican or Democrat?  Catholic or Baptist?  Do I believe in God?  Do I tolerate homosexuality or do I abominate it?  I doubt anyone knows the answers to those questions because I don't air it here or on Facebook.  I do hope you know I am all about YOU being YOU - treating others as you would like to be treated and behaving like you want to be remembered. Just be good people, OKAY?  (For the record, I am not particularly political, religious or gay.  HA HA.  Had to throw a little humor in there.)  

So, let's see how my Christmas village works into all this chatter.  

Churches of all sorts and all denominations coexisting.  

This big pink Church is one of my favorites.  I lusted (can you lust for a church?) over it at Target many years ago, but it was not needed or in the budget.  But, there was one waiting for me after Christmas at 75% off, so it was mine.  The day I found the little Preacher was a happy one for me.  I added in the giant old Shiny Brite as the moon this year.  Here comes Santa - he doesn't care about gay, straight, Democrat, republican or Baptist - he just wants you to be what?  That's right - just be GOOD.  

That little house in the middle is in the best location ever.  Right in between a Krispy Kreme and a ChickfilA.  And yes, that is a giant chicken headed towards ChickfilA.  (I know there were problems with ChickfilA and misunderstandings and hurtful words too.  But, this one is just pretend and there is no hate there.)

It's a happy place.  All are welcome here.  Come on in!

I know this post is all over in topics.  I don't get political or anything like that, but there is just so much HATE and stupidity in the world today.  Just play nice and be good.  OKAY?  

*Stepping of my tiny soapbox now.......:)

**Lara was a huge supporter of the ordinance.  She used intelligence and politeness to convey her feelings and make her point.  :)

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