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.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

A Tisket, A Tasket

I'm sorting through my Picnic Baskets.
I store all my craft supplies in my picnic baskets.  Right now, each basket is just crammed full of various things - millinery flowers, beads, felt, doll heads, you name it - tons and tons of craft supplies.  My New Year's resolution is to clean out the picnic baskets, get the craft supplies organized and, perhaps the scariest of all.......sell some of the baskets.  There's thirteen baskets in this photo - two in the room you can't see, three in the kitchen and five in the garage.  It's a bit of a sickness. 

The baskets with the heart on them are keepers - they are all Redman Baskets.  The red "X" baskets will are going to be sold or donated. Now that I know which baskets are staying and going, I am sorting through them and pulling out what craft supplies I no longer want or need.  A good amount of the items could be sold on Etsy or even in my booths, but I want them GONE, so off to Goodwill they will go.  I filled one big trash bag today with stuff to donate and started organizing what was left.  I have only gone through about five of the baskets to start.

I bought that new cabinet behind the baskets a week ago at Hobby Lobby.  I knew it was big in the store, but it is really BIG in my house.  I can't even see in those top two drawers.  The Breadman nearly choked at the thought of me paying retail for something and especially at the $200.00 price on the tag.  But, I paid for it with my very own money from my booth - so ha on him.  I love it.  It has twenty drawers to hold the bulk of my crafting supplies.  Now when I want to make something, all I have to do is pull out the drawer and use out of it instead of digging in multiple baskets.  

So far, I have only filled a few drawers - my beading supplies take up two and my paper punches and rubber stamps take up two.  Somethings will have to remain in the baskets, like felt and stuffing since they are too bulky to cram in drawers.  

Just to prove I really am trying - here is a basket all sorted out, cleaned up and priced for the booth.  See?  I can DO IT! (Do not tell me how perfect it would be for the 4th of July, because I know that already and am really trying to resist keeping it for that........)

In other matters of the living room.....

I found this shelf (The photo is crooked, not the shelf......) at the Flea Market last week and it is nearly identical to the other one in the living room, so it is practically a matched set.  I put my pastel pottery on it and so far KNOCK WOOD, it hasn't fallen and cracked the Breadman in the noggin.  It hangs right above his end of the couch.
This summer we went to The Breadman's Grandmothers old house and ransacked the shed for treasure.  I brought home these old vinegar bottles - two gallon bottles and one half gallon bottle.  They were absolutely filthy when we brought them home and one of them had kerosene stored in it for about forty years.  I rinsed them out, filled them about half full of hot water, a squirt of dish soap, two Denture Cleaning Tablets (from the Dollar Tree) and a half of cup of rice, then I shook the bejeezus out of them until they were sparkling clean.  I kind of like the simplicity of them as they are, but I think they might look good full of something, I just don't know what yet. Grandma was famous for her pickles, so having some of her vinegar bottles seemed like a good memory to keep.

I'm ready for a change and I want some of my cool old stuff to take center stage.  Until then, the whole living room is in disrepair while I change it up and decide what stays and what goes.  Are you switching things up too?


  1. Busy girl! Nothing better than having organized craft supplies and looks like that cabinet will do the trick. I've been mixing things up too..just painted my dining room table and got some metal chairs out of of my parents attic (yet to recover the seats)that I found last summer and had stored there. I also took down some plates off the wall, spackled the wall and am waiting to be inspired with something new to hang in there.

  2. Those are some great baskets!! I am going through some of my own purging around my cottage..some early spring cleaning!

  3. We REALLY are silly about our 'treasures' sometimes... look how efficient (and actually, attractive) your new drawer unit is!! Just think... (and I KNOW this from experience!!), when you want something from the bottom, you won't have to move e.v.e.r.y. s.i.n.g.l.e. b.l.a.s.t.e.d. container from on top of it, and then put e.v.e.r.y. s.i.n.g.l.e. b.l.a.s.t.e.d. container back on top of it!! 8-)
    I'm thinking that you are going to need to come up with a FUN! labeling system for your drawers to keep them straight though!!!

  4. busy girl I should be doing that but I'm not I have a closet that could use a good clean out.

  5. I'm taking a break from vacuuming to read blogs. :) I love that huge cabinet from HL! It looks really useful, plus it's cute! And I'm with Sue--because undoubtedly the supply I needed would somehow always be in the bottom picnic basket. :)

    Finally got the tree down last night, so I'm ready for a little change. Can't change up much in here because there's only one place for the furniture to go, but I do love going through my 'prop shelves' full of vintage treasures in the basement and deciding what I'm going to display next!

  6. Must be the time of year to organize and purge-feels great doesn't it!?!? I have that exact same basket in my booth-just put it in this week!

  7. Change has hit here at A La Carte also. I'm cleaning and sorting and trying to make decisions about what to keep and what to sell, donate or trash! I need to refine what I REALLY love and only keep those things...I know I love too much but I can make some edits I'm sure. Love your picnic baskets but if you are keeping Redman's and getting rid of most of the others I'm thinking that is a good decision. Oh and I love that cabinet of drawers! hugs, Linda

  8. I love the red and blue basket, I have an identical one and like you, I have all sorts of junk stored in it and it's shoved under a buffet in the dining room.

    I'll be switching things up if/when I move again. Can't wait to get out of this apartment and into a place with more room for furniture. That piece from HL looks wonderful - I saw it the other week and thought how great it would be to have so many drawers!!

  9. just a thought - an inexpensive idea - you could find corks for those bottles and just fill with colored water - and change it depending on the holiday.

  10. Anonymous12:02 PM

    I love the baskets! I need a few - really badly. Plus I am so over old wooden crates- baskets for all in 2012!


  11. My daughter temporarily has custody of my green Redman basket. It used to hold my yarn stash, but now the stash has grown to fill a closet and she'd been lusting after the basket since I got it. She has some of her craft and sewing stash in it, so it's still getting used. I don't see too many Redmans at thrift or antique stores, but they always make me think of you.

  12. I love pastel pottery too! I can't resist it at yard sales. Drooling over that pic - glad I'm not the only one that takes crooked pics lol.


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