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.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

The Great Flood of 2015

Saturday morning I was still deciding what to do that day - go hit some sales - although there weren't many advertised and Lara was out finding not much, or maybe go to an auction that looked promising  - an entire household and shed full - that could mean some box lots and things like I like to buy and sell.  Hmmmm, the day stretched ahead of me.  What to do, what to do......*ring* ring*  My cellphone rang  - it was the owner of the flea market where I have my booth.  Her voice was panicked and I could tell she was in her car.  I couldn't imagine what was wrong. "Shara, the store flooded last night. There's water running out the front door. Come as soon a you can!"  

Aye-y-yi.  I have to tell you something.  I didn't exactly RUN out the door that very minute. The idea of what might be happening out there freaked me out  I pictured water three feet deep, everything floating and swimming in water.  And, I forgot to mention...it was the toilet that had overflowed and caused the flooding.  So, GOD KNOWS what else might be floating in there.  

I got ready and headed that way.  But, the car pulled into the Super Cheap Thrift.  I still wasn't ready to see the carnage.  I have watched too much Katrina footage as of late and I was really, really expecting a heinous sight.  I looked around a bit, but the guilt was getting to me, so off I went.  I had actually remembered seeing a small shop vac there the last time I was in and I was hoping it would still be there.  But, it had sold.  

When I got to the flea market (which had only been one hour since she called) there were lots of cars out back, so lots of people had come to help.  There were several pieces of furniture sitting out in the sun and lots of throw rugs tossed on the walls to dry.  It was pretty wet outside around the door, but it had also rained the night before and it has flooded then too, so there are always sandbags by the door. ANYWAY - When I opened the door, there wasn't any water.  Hallelujah!  The floors are concrete and they were a darker color than normal, but there wasn't standing water that I could see.

Then I rounded the corner to my booth and Uh-Oh.  My stuff (the movable things and things on the floor) had been moved out and were scattered across four different booths.  When I set up the booth, I had bought an indoor/outdoor carpet remnant and put it on the floor, then sat shelving on the carpet. That carpet had been cut out, but was still under the shelves all soaked with water.  I have really heavy old solid wooden shelving in there and it is stuffed with merchandise. So, I knew I couldn't move it alone. I called for back-up, The Bean and The Breadman, and then set to work.  I wiggled a shelf this way about a foot, blew a fan on the floor and it dried up, then wiggled it the other way and blew the fan on it.  It got dry fast since it was just concrete.  THANK GOD.  The boys came and helped me move the huge shelves out enough to cut and pull the rest of the carpet out.  We used a Shop Vac and the big fan and got it pretty much dried out.  I left the big fan setup overnight just in case the bottoms of the shelves were wet.  In the end, after it was all said and done, the only things that were damaged where three old empty scrapbooks.  And, even those are out drying in the sun.  I think it will just add more "patina" to the pages.  :)  

The good part was that so many people got there and jumped right in to help everyone else.  There were mass amounts of fans and shop vacs everywhere.  Lots of people mopping and dumping buckets.  The toilet had run out of the tank, so it was good clean water and actually, the floors look nice and clean now.  Not the ideal way to clean up, but hey, it worked!

I always liked the way my booth looked with carpeting - I am the only one with carpet so it kind of set me apart.  But, not that it's gone, I kind of like it better.  I might look for an area rug to put down, but no hurry.  

While I was putting things back, I pulled a bunch of duds and pulled some things I think will do better at the Junk Ranch and did a little re-arranging.  The worst part was that I had just worked all afternoon on Thursday making it all over.  UGH.  But, now it has a different look again.  Switch it up, I guess.  Also, a lady came in the booth, looked at me and said, "I LOVE YOUR STUFF!"  Then she told me that she buys from my booth and from me at The Junk Ranch.  That made me happy!  I was also happy that The Breadman heard that.  He hadn't been to the booth in about a year and a half and he's never seen my set up at The Junk Ranch.  So, I was glad he heard that someone knew me and liked my junk.  I do know what I am doing....sometimes.


Here's how it I left it on Thursday.  Who knew I would be back so soon!?  

The best part was that none of the vendors were mad, everyone pitched in and helped, the owner ordered pizza for everyone and the store was open for business by 2:00.  

Teamwork wins again!

But, it was not one of the ways I had planned to spend my day, that's for sure!


Monday, August 17, 2015

Shara's Birthday Cake - 2015

Saturday was my birthday.  My birthday cake is a big deal to me.  It's not that I am conceited and want things to be all about me, because trust me, things are never all about me.  But, as the person that buys all the food and prepares all the food, I guess having someone else make something JUST FOR ME is a pretty big thing.  Also, seeing SHARA on something and not MOM or DEAR, is a plus. My Mom, God love her, always plans out a cake for me and orders it for me.  It is always white cake with real buttercream frosting.  I like pink - so there is usually pink.  

Let's take a stroll back through time to visit the cakes of the past:






Then there was the year we decided green might be fun.


It was.  Until the next day.  IF you know what I'm saying.  And, I know you DO!

Of course, we cannot forget the ONE year that The Breadman conspired with The Bean and decided that I needed a cupcake cake in the shape of a cute, happy monkey - maybe a little like Curious George.  Sweet, cute and happy.  


Uh.  

Ok?  

At least they got my name right?

Although that cake is super famous on Cakewrecks and has garnished me a lot of blog followers and a bit of "fame" per say.  So, it was really one of my best cakes even though it was truly terrifying.  

So, this year, I decided I wanted a plain white Coconut Cake.  Not plain - triple layer with coconut buttercream and coconut custard in between the layers.  Oh My Lanta - it was gooooooood.  But, since it came pre-made, it couldn't be decorated.  Luckily, SOMEONE had just purchased over 1,000 cake decorations that week.  So, I plucked a few from the bag and placed them on the cake.

So, now it is with great delight, I present to you......Shara's 2015 Birthday Cake.



TA-DA!

One big ass Ballerina, a boombox, a musical note, Charmander and two rifles.  Oh, and a PINK "Happy Birthday" to keep it classy.  

I really think the rifles made it.  

This concludes the Annual Cake Walk.  

Thank you for coming.  


Sunday, August 16, 2015

The Day Before Bargains on Galore

The day before I went to Baragins Galore on 64, we cleaned out the car and laid the seats down flat "just in case".  I mean, you never know what you might find to buy.  Then, that afternoon, a fellow junker invited Lara and I to come pick her cast-offs.  Now, if I have any cast-off's, it is JUNK. Broken, dirty - no longer good for a damn thing.  But, luckily I have been able to pick cast-offs that were way better than some of the junk I go LOOKING for on the weekends!  Lara bought a bunch of small furniture and some other things - perhaps she will blog it soon.  I knew I was leaving the next morning to go to ALL THE yard sales, so I was trying to not buy much.  But, then the picking fever hit and well...here you go.  Besides, if you see good junk and you have cash in your pocket - you better buy it.  

I got a cutter tablecloth, some marquee letters that Lara found and put in MY pile and now I feel like a heel about it...... and a few other things.  



This old storage organizer was without drawers when I found it and it thought it would be great to hold flash cards.  Lara and Paula convinced me to take the drawers too - just in case I needed them someday.  OKAY.  


This nice tall hanging rack is right up my alley.  I love old display stuff, not sure why or what I will use it for - but for $4.00 - I snagged it.  I am thinking Vintage Christmas goodie bags at the Junk Ranch.  I got a smaller tabletop one too.  Love my display stuff......


Now, you know my love of old handmade baskets.  This one is a doozie.  HUGE.  It filled up the back half of the car!  I have never seen one SO BIG.  I have no place for it, but yet, I could not seemingly leave it.  It will be great for a display.  Or maybe I will sleep in it.  HA. That coloring book is one of those giant ones you have to lay on the floor to color - about two feet tall.


Fun old Santa.  He has a few worn spots, but don't we all?


This old handmade bird cage is fantastic.  I thought Lara was going to buy it, but she passed so I swooped in on it.  It's really tall - about three feet or more.  I think it was red, but it's a faded out sort of pinkish color now.  RIGHT UP MY ALLEY.  It must surely go to The Junk Ranch.  SURELY!

I also bought an old metal door off an old cabinet to use as a memo/magnetic board that is pretty cool.  

And, that very morning, I had made a shopping list and written "Roll of cork" on it for a project.  And what do you think I bought??????  THREE rolls of CORK.  Ta Da!

I'm ashamed to tell you that I only paid $18.00 for all of this goodness plus things you aren't even seeing.  I take that back.  I am not ashamed!  Thanks for a fun night, Paula!

*Stay tuned...There's a Day After post too.  I'm Junk Drunk over here.  


Friday, August 14, 2015

Bargains Galore on 64 - I Did It!

We got up at 6:00 am on Thursday and headed over the mountain to Bargains Galore on 64.  I know that sounds late  - but most of the sales don't get started until about 8-9 and many were still setting up throughout the morning and afternoon.  We hit the first sale at 8:50 and left the last one at 5:55.  SO MANY SALES!  They were all along the highway in through Alma on a divided highway.  So, we drove to the end of town, turned around and hit the ones on the other side of the highway.  We stopped at a lot, but we passed a lot.  We probably passed more than we stopped at - but we stopped at a ton!  I think by the end of the day,we stopped at least 50 times.  And many of those stops had multiple vendors set up.  Some were more flea market-y and higher priced.  Others were actual yard sales.  Some were set up as once a year businesses with abandoned houses full of junk or sheds set up like mini stores.  I quickly learned that if a sale looked like one I would really like - old rusty chippy stuff and lots of it  - I wouldn't be able to afford a thing.  I bought two sacks full at one stop and two sacks full at one open air kind of dingy flea market, but other than that, I usually bought one or two things at each stop.  I left empty handed at a few.  The only thing I missed out on was a bag full of super old cracked up antique dolls that are all the rage.  They weren't priced, so I showed the lady that I had a tablecloth, a tin and the bag of dolls.  She looked at it, said, "Two dollars" and I paid her. When I was walking away, some man yelled at her that I had a bag of dolls.  She said she didn't see them and they were $10.00 each.  I handed them back to her and it was fine - but she wasn't paying attention - I SHOWED her the dolls.  Anyway, its okay - $2.00 would have been a nice deal, but $30.00 was not a deal - they weren't worth that at all.  That is my only rant of the day!  And, it really isn't even a rant!  Just a story.


This Snickers trash can caught my eye.  
It's about waist high - really cool, but of course, I didn't need it!


The Bean's holy grail.  I told him he "might" find a knife along the way.  This was our second stop. He bought six knives for a total of $20.00.  Not a bad deal.  He was happy the rest of the day.  (And he bought more too!)


This parking lot had hundreds of boxes.  I was SO excited.  But, it was gross old crap, it stunk and it was HOT.  Movin' on........

First truck shot.  The Bean only bought one Nerf gun.  



Do you see those light fixtures?  Lord a mercy!  HUGE!


This was a big sale, under a bunch of trees with a nice breeze.  Sadly it was all super high and nothing caught my eye.  But, the shade and breeze was worth a stop.



This child's size table and chairs caught my eye at that sale - but it was $175.00. 


Please tell me that these will never, ever, ever come back in style.  PLEASE?


Bathroom I was forced to use.  Hover, wash, GET OUT.  



If you ever have the chance to visit Arkansas, you must drive from Fayetteville to Fort Smith.  Bridges across mountains, millions of trees, no billboards or truck stops or houses.  It is beautiful.  


We got to drive through the tunnel in the mountain.  
It freaks me out.  


Home again, home again.  
Jiggity Jig.  
That's the University of Arkansas up on the hill.


So, there's my day.  We had fun.  Good Bye!

Oh, what's that?  

You want to see what I bought?  

Okay! Okay!  Okay!

I had big ideas of taking a photo of each sale, then photographing what I bought there.  But, I had to literally heave crap in the door and jump in the car before I got hit by a semi at each and every sale.  I mean, I love you guys,  But, I kinda wanted to LIVE to tell.  


BOOM!


I'll let the photos do the talking.  You can see what I bought.  


That tiny feedsack clothespin bag was my first good find.  SO CUTE.


Yes, I bought watermelon potholders.  4/$1.00 - that is my price point. 
Gotta rescue them.  


Loved this old unopened box of Dixie Frozen Food Containers.


I almost passed on this giant serving tray.  But I thought I could flip it for $20.00 at The Junk Ranch.  

Then I found one that just sold on ebay.  Whoop!  Whoop!

A very happy surprise!


Various pieces of jewelry.  Love all the Christmas pins.  



This piece of Arts and Crafts Pottery was a nice $1.00 find.  

Ebay bound.....


I wanted to find the vintage Christmas mother lode.  Instead, I found one thing here and one thing there.  But, it added up nicely.  Everything is Junk ranch bound except the tin in the center.  I hoard those like a crazy woman.  

At 5:00 we made our last stop at a big yard with about fifteen tents set up.  When we got in there, it was mostly tools and manly junk.  And it was more of a flea market situation.  We were in the last tent, headed to the car when I spotted a box with old cake decorating toppers and picks in it.  Not like a cigar box, or a shoe box.  


But, like a huge toilet paper cardboard box full.  

Then I saw one more.

And another.  

Uh-OH.

I started looking through them, but they weren't priced.  The guy didn't want to talk how much for one or two - he wanted me to buy them all.  Then he pointed out three more smaller tubs under the table too.  He named his price.  It was more than I thought I should pay especially at my last stop of the day.  But I considered it, and then I did what I ever do.......I counter offered a price $10.00 less and told him he could keep the storage tubs.  OK he said!  

Oh my GOSH, there are hundreds and hundreds of packages.  Lots of 1990's cartoon and movie ones like Rugrats, Catdog, Mickey Mouse, Barney and Teletubbies.  I really only wanted the vintage ones, but now that I OWN THEM ALL - I have done a bit of research and the Teletubbies sell for $29.98 a pack.  Great googley moogley!


As for the vintage - there are Christmas and New Year.

Halloween a palooza.


Baby things and the World's Largest Ballerina.  



Well, as you can SEE, we had a fabulous LONG hot day.  I cannot believe I put off going to this for so long.  I will BE THERE OR BE SQUARE from now on though!

Thank you for all the sweet comments here and on IG - I felt like I had a lot of my friends with me yesterday!  

Sunday, August 09, 2015

Roadtrip!

I have wanted to go to this FOREVER.  So, guess what?  I am GOING!!!!!!!  Me and The Bean are heading out Thursday morning and looking to FILL THE CAR.  Whoop!  Whoop!!

Bargains Galore on 64

  THE 16th ANNUAL BARGAINS GALORE on 64 will take place on August 13-15, 2015, Thursday through Saturday. If you haven't been out looking at all the antiques, collectibles and just great buys, you have missed 160 miles of yard sales. "Shop until you drop" along Highway 64 (which parallels Interstate 40) from Fort Smith past Conway to Beebe, Arkansas

     The River Valley of Arkansas is proud to host another of our Bargains Galore on 64 yard sale extravaganzas. This annual event is held on Thursday through Saturday, the second weekend in August and offers a great opportunity for commercial vendors, non-profit groups, clubs, schools, churches, civic organizations, etc., to promote their products or service. There are no limitations on what vendors may market, though we particularly encourage antiques and collectibles.

     Designated a "Travel Treasure" by Southern Traveler magazine, the event draws family vacationers and dealers, buyers and sellers alike, who "treasure" not only great bargains along Hwy 64 but also the friendly atmosphere and the beautiful vistas that prevail.

     We have grown tremendously each year, thanks to the great support of the various chambers of commerce and other tourist promotion agencies throughout the River Valley area.


I AM SO EXCITED!  Happy Birthday TO ME!!!!!!

Stay tuned for the big rundown post.  Maybe it will be AMAZING.  Maybe it will SUCK.  But it is an adventure and I am stoked.  Let's DO THIS!

**Follow me on Instagram for lots of updates, rants and excitement!

Wednesday, August 05, 2015

Let's Go to The Booth: Fayetteville

I don't go to check on the booth on the weekends.  Mostly because it is usually to busy to do anything and mostly because I am out looking for more junk to put in said booths.

But based on what I see on Monday, apparently large groups of orangutans must come in and swing from the beams and knock over merchandise.   That can be the only logical explanation as to why it looks like this on Mondays.  

Surely respectable people wouldn't knock things off the walls and  just throw things on the floor willy nilly, WOULD THEY?  
Or pick up merchandise and then leave it  three aisles over stuck under a cabinet.  WOULD THEY?

The answer is THEY WOULD.  

And THEY DO.  

Here's the latest look at the booth that Lara and I share.



Most of what you see here is mine.  I think I take up too much room and then Lara will say that she takes up too much room, but in actuality, I think it's just about right.  We both love the look of the table with the cubby on it.  But we can really only put things on that entire side of the booth that will fit in the palm of your hand.  So, we are on the lookout for a couple nice tall bookshelves to put against that gridwall.  We could really get a ton of merchandise in there.  We both love and prefer to sell cute, vintage or fun things.  But these college kids buy useful things like dishes, glasses, books and the like.  

That wire shelf is one of my favorite possessions.  It is from an old feed store and held bags of feed.  It collapses down and folds flat.  I put in in there and bought plastic containers that fit just perfectly then I filled each one with different things - old kid car playing cards card packs, map pendants, Scrabble words and tile holders, sheet music rolls, dictionary page bundles, wallpaper bundles, flashcards, BINGO card packs, vintage label packs, milk cap baggies, and on and on and on.  I really don't know what people do with most of that stuff, but I have been selling quite a bit of it.  

Lara's fabulous prints on the fabulous wall.  She pulled that big globe and took it to her other booth.  I had one just like it and it took forever to sell - something about the black lucite base makes it a hard sale.  I think it is super cool.  

Lots of things on the wall of shelves.  After the college kids have had a month to shop, I am going to pull some things that have been there a long time.  Some I will donate, others will go to The Junk Ranch.  


That wooden beam on the right belongs to the shelf space beside our booth.  Whoever has that area has random scrapbooking and holiday items all year long.  It drives Lara and I CRAZY that they always have to hang some random far off holiday item RIGHT there in the line of our booth.  Currently we have a ton on Razorback stuff in there and they have an Easter sign and some Christmas napkins hanging there.  WTH?

Better up close shot of the ephemera shelving.  I forgot vintage envelopes, button packs, book cover clipboards and pinwheels!  


Up close shot of the cubbies.  They really are neat and it is easy to see when something has sold. The Chinese Checker board and a set of four cups were missing last time that I noticed.  


At this booth we get the grid wall too.  Usually that belongs to a different vendor, so that is a perk.  I sold three of those huge flashcards this month.  They have been at the other booth forever.  

My other booth is in need of an overhaul.  I am not feeling it lately,but I really need to give it some attention.  I can't expect to make any money if I don't give it some attention soon.  But, that is a post for another day.  Until then, watch out for those orangutans.  


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