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.

Friday, June 28, 2013

Friday Finds: Baseballs and a Soda Fountain Stool

This morning we had a bright and early appointment with the A/C guy to check out our A/C unit before the warranty expires.  You know that is just when things go bad - as soon as the warranty expires.  Yesterday the temperature in the house was fluctuating a few degrees and it is always, always, always precisely 72 degrees in our house.  So, I was worried that it was the END.  But, everything checked out A okay, so that is good news in my book.  Since he was early, I was up and ready to go hit some sales when he left before it got really hot out.  It was 95 today.  Yuck.  It was the kind of heat that makes the top of your heat feel like the sun is leaking in on your brain.  I only went to three sales, then came back to pick up the boys and go to a sale in town that I saw on Craigslist, then out to eat, grocery shopping, a Goodwill run (I left empty handed) and back home to the nice cool house.  

First stop netted four pieces of jewelry and some Christmas Sheet Music that I completely forgot to photograph.  :(  The sale was in a neighborhood sale in the newer home subdivision and I really never go to sales there - everything is newer Kirklands, Pottery Barn sort of stuff or baby and kid related and I just don't need/like any of that stuff.  But, I drove through the streets, just in case it looked like someone was cleaning out Grandma's estate.  I finally found one sale that just had rows of boxes in the driveway and that looked mysterious so I thought I would have a dig.  I did find the few things I mentioned, but while I was looking, I got into a long conversation with the lady at the sale and it turned out that her Mother was in the same Rehab place where my Mom had been and they had been really good friends there.  When I described who my Mom was, I mentioned my Mom's back brace and neck brace she clasped her hands in front of her mouth and said, "Everyone talks about her all the time wondering how she is doing!"  So, that was the reason I stopped at that sale.  Small world, right?  

Stop #2 had lots of furniture and a few smalls.  Just as I was about to leave empty handed, I spotted this cool 1970's metal file box.  
For ten cents.  Yes, ten cents.  I tried to give them a quarter, but they insisted I take the change.  

Stop #3 provided a nice heavy angel food cake pan and a bundle of three old games strapped together.  Two Electronic Modular Science kits and a 1968 Cadaco Baseball Game like this one that sold for $96.00.  Total spent:  $1.00 for all four items.

Stop #4 was advertised as a Retiring Teacher selling off her school supplies such as flash cards, classroom teaching aides, classroom decorations, etc.  I had grand illusions of old flash cards, science posters, lab glass, pull down charts and the like, but it was mostly newer things.  She told me that she had sold a "ton" of things that morning, so I won't think about what I might have missed.  :(

I did get a Captain Kangaroo Matching Numbers game, Catching Fire and Mocking Jay (Hunger Games) 1st edition Hardbacks, another 1st edition Hardback book, a big vintage wooden magic trick set  and a Fisher Price sorting toy for $2.00 total.  Seriously, two dollars!

I also found three old slates - made from actual slate!  
10¢ for all three.
That is 3.33 cents each.  That is crazy.
Eighteen old crusty used baseballs for a NICKEL each.
I envision them in a big old wire basket on someone's porch or in a glass cloche.  
90¢ for eighteen balls is pretty cheap.  :D

And this great old drugstore soda fountain stool.  For THREE DOLLARS.  I know it's rusty and crusty, but I've certainly never seen another one for sale anywhere.  It needs to be cleaned and scrubbed and recovered in a cool retro vinyl.  I think it is fantastic.  I don't know if I will do the work to it, or just sell it all rusty and crusty and let someone else do the hard work.  I kind of like it the way it is for the Barn Sale, but we'll see.

If you get out this weekend - watch that heat and drink lots of water.  It's going to be a scorcher.  I have no plans to go out tomorrow.  But, a cup of coffee and a glance at Craigslist and my plans might suddenly change.  You know how that goes, right?  

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

All By Myself: A Day of Thrifting

Today I was a good Mom.  I suggested that The Bean and The Breadman go see Iron Man 3, do a little male bonding, get out of the house, relax, stay cool, you know - all that stuff.  They took to it hook, line and sinker.  They didn't know my plan was to go thrifting all by myself!  I don't mind them going with me.  But, I am always on edge, looking over my shoulder seeing who is bored or who wants to go home.  (Usually, it's the Breadman.)  So, every once is a very, very long while, I get to go out all by myself and do some serious thrifting.  I can go to as many thrifts as I want and look at everything twice, just like you are supposed to do when you are on a thrifting mission.

In the end, I dropped them off at the movies since The Breadman's truck doesn't have any A/C.  So, I had to be back in three hours to pick them up.  But, I can do a lot of damage in three hours.
First stop - The Goodwill located adjacent to the movie theater.  I only go there if I am in the area and I really have only found a handful of things there.  Today I found the Polish doll, a German weather station, fold put chalkboard and the wooden toolbox for a total of $4.00.  The chalkboard will be used as a sign in my booth and at the Barn Sale.  The toolbox will get a coat of paint and maybe a stencil or something.  

I love these old German weather houses.  This one has a toadstool so that makes it super good in my book.

The wooden doll is sweet and will go to the booth.  

Second stop was a biggest thrift in town, run by a local Church - The Potter's House Thrift Store.  They have a color coded pricing structure that varies from regular price to 25% off, 75% off and 50¢.  Everything I bought today was new to the sales floor so it was all full price.  I had a strict budget of $20.00 for the day, but that went out the window when I dropped $23.00 here.  Whoops.

Lovely aged green tray table, a 1942 Joplin MO yearbook (I'd like to get this back into the hands of someone in Joplin since the school got destroyed in the tornado), set of three of what I HOPE are Martha Stewart copper animal cookie cutters and a Ford Mustang 25th Anniversary stein for The Bean.  (He is nuts for Mustangs).
And, Oh yes - TEN Western German candy container eggs.  I love these eggs and have a pretty good collection of them.  I get excited when I find ONE from time to time.  So, to find TEN at once - Wow!  I paid $5.00 total for them all.  Those are keepers.

Terrible photo, but I found two big bags full of candles and candle holders for crafting.  I forgot about these - they were the 75%  color, so only 25¢ a package.

Some sort of a Dansk silverplate paperweight.  I have to do some research on it.  Usually anything Dansk is $$, so I picked it up.  

I'm hoping to recoup what I spent today on this item.  

I have another tray table like this and I use it every single night to price items, make things, cut coupons, read a magazine, eat ice cream and other stuff.  I'm always afraid it will break and I won't have it anymore.  This one is actually bigger than the one I use, so I will most likely be the one I use from now on.  It has sweet little shapely legs not unlike me.  (I kid).

At this point, I had an hour and ten minutes left before I had to get the boys, so I made an impromptu decision to drive to the next town over to a big Church run thrift store.  This thrift has a lot of newer items, but the last time I was there I found those Gurley Cowboy Candles. So, I was hoping there was something there for me.  An added bonus was the fact that I was in need of a bathroom and they have a nice clean one.  (Thrift store bathrooms aren't my favorite).

When I got there, on the way to the bathroom, I went down the toy aisle because that was where the Gurley Candles were (why?  I have no idea) and that's when I saw IT.  The reason I had to drive all the way THERE.

A tin dollhouse.  *Squeal.*  I love these old tin dollhouses.  I couldn't believe it was just sitting there among the brightly colored Little Tike vomit.  Even though I saw it immediately and pounced on it like a rabid animal, I knew not to get too excited since it was vintage and collectible so the price could be high.  I held my breath, read the $4.00 tag and immediately remembered that I was about to pee my pants.  :D (TMI?)

 It's a dandy one with  bright red siding with sailboats shutters.
 A pink nursery and red striped kitchen.  It's  Wolverine dollhouse, made right here in Arkansas.
It matches the one I got at an auction for $2.00 perfectly.  The smaller pink one on top came from Goodwill for $5.00.  Now you see I have THREE and THREE is an official collection.  Now I just need to find a big sack of vintage Wolverine dollhouse windows at a sale.  How hard could that be?  (ha)

After I put the dollhouse behind the counter and finally found the bathroom, I found a few more things.
A strange folding wooden thing that I have no idea what it is, but it was old, handmade and 50¢, so I grabbed it.  I'll think of a way to re-purpose it.  Also a wooden plaque that will get decoupaged and a funny metal rickshaw sculpture.

A lovely vintage pink and yellow tablecloth.  It's always a good day when I find a tablecloth.

After all that, I still had enough time to hit one more Goodwill.  

A Scrabble game for my booth (the third one in a week), a piece of vintage pottery and a new photo album that was chock full of old photos.
I pulled out all of the old photos and will donate the album back to Goodwill.

I really thought this was as old Bingo Cage or for a raffle drawing.  It spins, it rotates, it could be those things.  But The Bean informed me it is actually a BBQ grill rotisserie basket.  It really sucks to have a smart kid.  That won't stop me from turning it into something else.  If it could fool me, it could surely fool someone else, right?

And lastly, this old metal basket from some sort of a store display.  I think.  The Bean hasn't told me otherwise....... Actually, I know this is an old store display basket and I am sticking to it!

I had a great day thrifting and found lots of great stuff.  The boys enjoyed the movie so it was a win-win situation for everyone.  It's going to be nearly 100 starting tomorrow, so I am not venturing out to any sales this weekend.  

At least, I'm not planning on it.

We'll see.......

Monday, June 24, 2013

Crime DOES Pay!

Today The Bean and I went to see my Mom.  On the way there, we took a little detour to drive by my Grandmother's old house to see how it looked.  It still looks exactly like it did when she lived there with the exception of three solar lights stuck in the ground by the ramp.  It's really weird.  Nothing else is different.  It look the just same house. 

When we stopped at the corner, I noticed a police car parked by the street.  It was close to the Square and City Hall, so I thought it was court day and he was just parked there.  That's when we saw the Police Officer come dragging a lady out of a house!  She was in a tank top and pajama bottoms.  Well, we were about a half a block up the street and we couldn't see very well, so we drove up for a closer look.  (!)  I called it  "Homeschool Lesson in Legalities."  I mean, really, how many times in your life do you actually get an up close look at an actual arrest?   

(Now might be a good time to tell you that this was in a tiny, little, stuck in the 1980's town of 2,000 people where they have about four policeman and crime is not a real issue.  She probably popped her husband upside the head or wrote a bunch of bad checks or something.  I doubt she was a serial killer or anything.)

Anyway, in order to see better, I swung up a side street, turned around in the gravel alley and came back up to the corner so we were only a house away.  We could see really good!  He handcuffed her, read her her rights, put her in the back of the car with his hand on her head (Just like DOG THE BOUNTY HUNTER does it!) then drove off.  We looked all nonchalant when he drove by.  *Whistle*Whistle*Whistle* Like we just happened to be at the corner.  You know.  Natural like.

SO, after our big CRIME ADVENTURE, I had to double back up the street to bet back on the main highway and that is when I saw it.  On the left side of the road.  Near the curb.  In front of an old house. An empty old house.  A....pile....of....trash!  Cleaning out the shed and attic kind of trash.  Screeeeech.  Much to the disapproval of The Bean.  But, man, GOOD TRASH is hard to find.  

Some of it was actual trash.  Well, at least, I assumed it ws trash since it was in trash bags.  OH MY GOD.  I should have looked.  Oh well.  I left behind a couple of old garden hoses and as soon as I got home and saw my garden hose wreath on the front door, I KNEW I should have grabbed them.  Dangit.  I could have sold those wreaths!

The real reason I stopped was I saw a pile of old lampshades.  Lampshades used to have great old wire support structures that looked like a sculpture.  

Do you have any idea how hard it is to take a picture of something made out of wire?  Well, let me tell you, it is HARD.  Here's the best of the worst.  They are great old forms.  And, made of really strong metal.  You can do a number of things with these old forms - add slides for a decorative lampshade, use them in the yard like tomato cages, hang them from the ceiling and attach postcards or ephemera from them with clothespins.  I was happy to find five neat old ones at one time.    Barn Sale bound!

The only other thing I grabbed was this old jar.  I can always use an old jar for something.  It was filthy, but it cleaned up perfectly.  
Once I had it cleaned up, I read the bottom and found out it is actually an old Chick Fount - a Chicken Fountain.  The glass is usually the first thing to break on a chicken waterer, so that was a cool find.  

I hope you've learned your lesson here.  If you ever see anyone getting arrested, stop, watch, listen.  Look for trash piles.  It's all good.  

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Saturday Finds - Projects A'Plenty

Saturday I left my house at NOON, went to nine yard sales all in one neighborhood and was back home with a good amount of project junk in less than an hour.  And, I spent less than $10.00.  Not bad!
A sweet Strawberry Shortcake doll.  As a general rule, I am not a fan of these crocheted dolls, but she is well done and has bloomers, a dress, an apron and a hat AND she was only 50¢.  The little girl that I baby sat when I was 13 years old is having a little girl.  When she was little her room was decorated in Strawberry Shortcake, so I always think of her when I see S.S.  I picked up a vintage SS baby quilt last week, so I think these two things will go to her.  She's a very well to do Pharmacist and lives in a gorgeous home, but I think she will enjoy this little bit of vintage goodness.  

Project #1:  Six oak frames that I will paint for the booth.  One of those nice heavy handmade one in the center fell apart and I am just sick about it.  They are very nice heavy frames.  I think I will paint the other two bright red and add Arkansas Razorback word clouds in them.  I got these all at one sale where I knew the lady, I have known her for about two years and I see her on a semi-weekly basis. But, when I started talking to her she said, "Do I know you?"  Uh......  When she figured it out, she started telling me that I could have everything half price and then she gave me a big cardboard standee of an M&M NASCAR driver for The Bean.  I guess she felt guilty.  If her being guilty meant deals for me, then that's okey doke by me!
 Project #2:  Two old Jell-O molds to make into Christmas wreaths.  
Project #3:  Neat old baking pan to make into something that I haven't decided yet.
Project #4: Old strainer insert that will become the topper to a windchime.
Project #5: This big pile of old Learn to Paint/Draw books were 25¢ each.  I had a book of rose paintings that I took apart and framed for the booth.  These all have great drawings in them that I can frame too.
There were even book books of NUDES.  Shock!  I don't think I will be framing those.  
These two will probably go on ebay.  
(Although, I had HORRIBLE sales this week and I am not really excited to sell anything on there this summer.)

Also, not shown, Project #6: Two old School Dictionaries to turn into ephemeral bundles and Project #7: An old clipboard to paint with chalkboard paint and Project #8: a bright red vintage scrapbook that I plan to "Razorback" up somehow.

 And, lastly, on little keeper for me.  
Pink, pottery twenty five cents.  
Need I say more?

Lots of projects on tap for me.  
How about you?

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Here's the Story.....of a Junkin' Lady

I left the house this morning with a full car of things headed to fill up my booth.  Mind you. my booth has about five times as much in it as any other booth in the store, but I can ALWAYS put more in there.  I had vintage Fisher Price toys, an old one man band and five picnic baskets full of smalls to put out.  I was feeling good getting all that stuff out of my living room.  But then, you know where this is going, after a stop at the Super Cheap Thrift and one of my favorite yard sales of the year, my car was full again.  It is a vicious, but fun, cycle.

The Super Cheap Thrift has been pretty empty lately and I haven't found much there in a while.  They did have games and puzzles for 10¢ for awhile, so I was picking up games to piece out for the game pieces.  But, other than that, not much.  Today it was stocked up and really full.  I was kind of bummed that I didn't get there until 45 minutes before they closed.  They stock the store the night before it is open (it is only open Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday for three hours each day), so people are usually lined up around the building waiting for it to open at 9:00.  I bet I missed some goodies, but that is okay.  I found some good stuff anyway.

The main thing I bought was an old heater unit.   Somebody really did a number on it with greenery, a birds nest and a big old mushroom.  It was seriously fugly.  

But, I thought all that fugliness could be removed, and I was right.  It wasn't priced, so I found the lady that is over the whole place that thinks I am "sweet" and "nice" and asked her for a price.  She said, "Three dollars."  Thanks lady.  Now, that copper backing is actually just some textured scrapbook paper, but it looks okay in there to me.  At least until I decide just how to spruce it up..  It will go the the Barn Sale this Fall.

After the thrift I spotted the signs that always lead to my "favorite ladies" sale.  Her name is Jean and she has sales at her house, her son's house and her sister's house.  but, she always uses the same wooden "A" sign that says YARD SALE with an arrow so I always know it is HER sale, no matter where I am headed.  She and her husband have several flea market booths in town and even up in Missouri so they buy a lot.  They go to auctions and buy box lots, then they take what they don't want and make up baggies of the odds and ends and price them 25¢  or 50¢ each.  I guess they don't sell a lot of smalls in their booth or maybe it just isn't the right stuff.  But, I love those bags of junk!  I always find three of four things at least that I can sell for a couple dollars each for that 25-50¢ investment.  Not bad.  

Her sale today was at her sister's house.  When I walked up she said, "Where have you been?"  She had a sale at her house last week (that's where the BIG Sales are) and I missed it.  Boo.  That's why there wasn't as much this time.  When I left, she gave me a hug and told me that she would see me next time.  Now, how often does that happen at a sale?  

Here's the loot from today, all from the sale, the SCT and one rare purchase from my very own flea market.  

An old mug tree.  I always pick these up for the occasion that I do find a set of mugs to fit it.  They also make good jewelry displays.  A set of gaudy orange toadstool salt and pepper shakers.  On gaudy orange Readers Digest book. already gutted.  A quilt square with gaudy orange flowers.  It's all very Brady Bunch, isn't it?

I have actually been looking for these for about twenty years.  I had a pair of these in my room when I was little.  I had them in storage when I lived in my apartment, but when we got married, I hung them in the laundry room of our rental house.  There was a year of having all of our things in storage in between the rental house and buying our first house.  Once we bought this house, we put things in the garage that we wanted to keep, but didn't have the perfect spot for......yet.  We also had a pile of things we never, ever wanted again, so we had a garage sale.  At some point during our yard sale, I made the mistake of going into the house to go the the bathroom and left the husband in charge.  Yes, you guessed it.  He sold my Raggedy Ann and Andy pictures.  THE HORRORS.  When I came back out, he said, "There wasn't a price on those pictures of the dolls, so I sold them for a quarter."  When I finally figured out what he was talking about, I was crushed.  Those were mine.  And, just vintage enough and just sweet enough that I wanted to put them somewhere.  *Sniff*  So, now here we are twenty years later and I FOUND THEM.  But, guess what?  I'm going to sell them.  They aren't MINE.  *Moral of the story:  Never leave the husband in charge of your yard sale.  (He also sold a high dollar wrought iron stand, fish tank and all the fixin's for $10.00 while I was in the house.  But, that was long ago and I have nearly forgotten/forgiven him.  NOT!)

An old Vaporizer in the box, four old pot holders and a red gingham tablecloth/

This stuff is all from the yard sale baggies.  Two old cook booklets, three tiny loaf pans, three tiny tart tins, two potholders, an old beaded plant hanger, a YoYo from an Air Force base and a sample of marble from the Capitol Building.  

A 1969 Yearbook from a local high school, sweet apothecary jar with some of my beloved, albeit tacky, plastic flowers inside, a sweet art deco PINK box and a couple old blocks.  

The blocks feature a sweet birdie in a nest and a deer.  The backs have a mouse and a Scottie Dog.  

Three old berry baskets (for free) and a handful of old advertising pens.  In the past, I have sold a lot of old advertising pens, so I always pick them up.  I look for the old ones with five digit phone numbers and places like car brands, tractor brands, food companies or other name brands on them.  

I found this "Hog Caller" at the Flea market.  It's from the 1960's and vintage razorback items are always good sellers.  I am hoarder a bunch of old razorback stuff to put on ebay this Fall.  Apparently we have a new coach and everyone is very "excited" and looking forward to a "great" season.  Pbtth.  Like I care.  I hate football.  But, I will sell stuff to those suckers all.day.long. :D

A handmade Scottie Dog (I know he looks like a pig in this photo) made out of vintage ticking.  

A cheerleader doll from 1983.  Any ideas who she is?

My favorite find:  A vintage bridal bouquet.  I am trying to find some old millinery flowers for a project, so when I saw this, I thought these might work.  But, once I got a closer look at it, I knew I could never tear it apart.  

The flowers are made of some sort of plastic or resin material.  Up close, they look just like Buttercreme frosting flowers off a big beautiful birthday cake. I think it must be from the 1950's-1960's.   I'm not sure what I will do with it.  I think it is just lovely though.  

I did get a lot out of the house and this really isn't that much, now that I look at it.  The heater is in storage and the bulk of this will go to the booth.

There are plenty of sales listed for this weekend, but there are also heat advisories and that does NOT sound fun to me.  Maybe staying home or going to the movies might be in order.  Happy junking to you if you choose to go out there!  Stay safe and for Eddie, wear a big floppy hat! 

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Weekend Finds: June 15th

So, like I mentioned in my last post where I featured the craziest thing I ever bought - six identical yet different colored handmade gingham shirts - I happened on a sale that I didn't even plan on going to and ended up finding some really cool stuff.  The Bean and I were headed to Sam's Club and I had no intention of going to any sales.  But, when I saw the yard chock full of tables piled with stuff, I knew I was going.  I could tell it was old stuff from the road.  I just didn't know what kind of old stuff or what the pries were going to be, but I knew I was stopping!  I stopped so quickly, in fact, that I forgot to put the car in park.  I was looking at something on a table and I heard the lady having the sale say, "Your car is moving."  She said it so laid back and slow that it took me a minute to realize she was talking to ME.  Luckily, The Bean was in the passenger seat so he turned the key off to stop it just as I go there to hit the brakes.  Whoopsie.  Perhaps I need one of those "This car stops at all garage sale" bumper stickers.  Except mine will say, "This car sorta stops at all garage sales."

Finds at the sale:  A set of two very old suitcases in really, really nice condition for $5.00, a giant Graniteware lid for FREE and a lovely vintage tablecloth like I love.  When I put the tablecloth down with my finds, I said that there wasn't a price on it.  The older lady told me it was a dollar and that was good for me.  Then a guy chimed in that his Mom had hand sewn that with her own hands (There is an extra strip of white on each side to make it fit their table).  So, the lady said, "Well, since she MADE it, you can have it for ($5.00?  $10.00??? What???)...a DIME."  Oh, how love logic like that - it's old and handmade?  Well, then that's junk.  New from Walmart - that's high dollar!
A sweet little fat pottery pot in the loveliest shade of green filled with old Dominoes.

Two chalkware cats and a toothpicker.

Par of spaghetti poodles, an old baby plaything and a bar tool with a bakelite handle.

A little girl's dress made out of feedsacks.  Pretty plain and not very cheery feedsacks, but feedsacks nonetheless.

An owl bank.  You just stick a quarter in his eye.  Weird, right?

I actually bought an entire Cub Scout uniform, but I took all these things off to wash it.  

The Bean found all these old unused patches for me.  

These too.

He also found this old box that said, Face Bag" on it.  So, he opened it and discovered this thing of nightmares.  It's a hot water bottle for your face.  I actually have it upside down int he photo.  I only figured that out,when I put it on my actual face and I couldn't breathe.  Doh!  It actually goes over your forehead and cheeks.  I really can't imagine why you would want to use this.  I know there are latex "fans" out there, I wonder if they might like this oddity?

This cool old hanger had a bunch of scarves on it.  I asked if it was for sale and after considerable consideration, it was decided that yes it was and that it would be fifty cents.  Alrighty.

My favorite find is this neat handmade wooden dollhouse.  

  It's kind of simple and primitive.  
I want to put it on my front porch, but until then, it's in the side yard on the old table I made out of The Bean's old basketball backboard.
I spotted two old quilts on a trailer.  I asked how much for the "blankets" (bad, I know) and they told me $2.00 each.  

Sold!  I love good old well made useable quilts.  I appreciate the handiwork and the time it took to gather the materials and actually make the quilt.  

They won't win an award for being fancy or for being beautiful.  
But they will keep us warm next winter and be appreciated.

An unexpected sale brought unexpected treasures.  

Did you find anything good this weekend?

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