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.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

The Warehouse Sale: Junk & a Journey

Monday, I was up starting to get ready to head to the warehouse sale when Lara sent me a text:  "At the warehouse.  Gate locked.  Now one around anywhere."  Damn!  So, I worked on ebay packages and laundry and didn't even bother getting ready.  Then, about noon, Lara sent another text, "It's open.  Crazy amount of stuff.  Bring a flashlight."  You seriously have not seen anyone get dressed so fast in your life.

When I got there....YOU GUYS, you would not BELIEVE the sheer amount of STUFF.  It was piled to the ceiling in a huge warehouse.  It was not neat - it was a mess.  Piles upon piles.  I started in one direction when the man stopped me.  "The things from this point to this point are not mine and from this point to this point are not mine, but everything else is mine and is for sale.  Open boxes, look in drawers, make yourself at home.  Nothing is off limits."  Of course, the area that I was headed to and was where I saw things that I wanted, but that turned out to be an "off limits" area.  I refocused and found a pile of boxes and just dove in.

Since I didn't know prices, I just started throwing things in my bag.  If I could sell it for a dollar or two, I would throw it in the bag.  When my bag was full, I went for a price.  He looked in the bag, pulled out each thing and looked at it and talked about what it was.  Now, he didn't do this in the usual condescending way some people do or in a way that made me think he was going to charge me a lot.  He was seeing most of it for the first time and he was interested in each item.  He handed me the full bag back and said it would be $5.00.  That's when I knew that I could afford just about anything.  So it was time to dive back in and dig!

The back of the warehouse had a nice bright light, so I spent a good amount of time back there looking in boxes and drawers.  This warehouse was behind a locked gate, in the back of the warehouse and there were only three other people in this pitch dark warehouse along with this man that we didn't know.  It was literally almost every single thing that your parents warned you about all wrapped up into one perfect crime scene.  Luckily, everyone was jovial and the man having the sale was super nice.  There was just one really annoying lady that came and put her super bright flashlight right in my eyes and just stood there shining away.  I was being polite and letting her be and then I heard Lara's voice say, "Geez, Shara - stop being so nice and tell me to stop!"  Ha!  We meet up at the god awfulest/most wonderful places.  :)  

In the end, I only bought two bags full, a cool old metal file drawer and an awesome old metal toolbox that folds out.  It was just so dark in there and most of the boxes were on the "Off limits" side.  I had accidentally gotten into an "off limit" area and found boxes of old Dominoes, game pieces and the stuff like I love before I was told that was part of the not for sale area.  But, he was nice and let me get those items I had already.   He said he would have the sale again in a few months.  So, I will be going back.  Side story on this guy - he was actually on the Hoarders TV show.  I never saw the episode, but I know it was him.  I guess they cleaned up his house, but maybe he "forgot" to mention his twenty thousand square foot warehouse hoard?  He really is just the nicest guy. (I looked it up - He was on Season One, Episode 9, if you happen to be hoarding the box set.  HAHAHAHAHAHAHA.)

Here's some of what I bought in a lousy photo since it's been raining for days.  Three nice old paint by numbers, an old metal box, a huge corn sack with great graphics, a few neat old tins, cards, chess pieces, Dominoes, single salt and pepper shakers, two heavy bronze finials, a little toy soldier, a carriage clock, Buffalo Nickel ashtray, rubber chew toy, cue ball and a transistor radio.  

I bought the cue ball only to toss in my box of pool balls that I sell.  When I got it out of the bag, I noticed it had a signature of Buddy Hall on it.  I looked it up and he's a professional pool player and he is in the Billiard's Hall of Fame.  I can't guarantee it's authentic, but the signature matches all the ones I could find on the internet.  It's on ebay with that disclaimer, so we will see.  The little transistor radio turns out is worth about $50.00.  You see, you just never know what is worth what until you bring it home and research it.  They can't all be big sales, but the little stuff adds up too.  I figure there's a couple hundred dollars worth of stuff in that photo.  That's not bad, right?  

This is off topic, but that reminds me - I bought a shoe box full of old new in the box office supplies not long ago.
See those four blue and aqua boxes in the middle?  They are these rolls of wire that go in an old stapler that makes individual staples one at a time.  I had never heard of anything like that - so I put them on ebay.  They sold for $42.00.  I know that ain't Blythe money, but they were destined for the trash just about anywhere else.  I am glad they will be used and I am happy to have $42.00. :) 

I found this drawer under a set of shelves.  When I asked the man the price, he opened the drawers and admired every piece of wire, every old plug, all the screws and so on and so on util I mentioned that he could actually KEEP all that stuff IN the box, if I could just buy the box.  His eyes lit up and he smiled at me, "Really?" he said.  He pulled out all the "junk" and told me I could have the box for $5.00.  SOLD.

I also got a really great old metal case that opens up and all these levels of drawers pop out.  It's hard to describe, but it is seriously awesome.  I have an idea that I can use it to hold all my different types of jewelry when I sell at shows.  I should be able to store it all in there, go to the sow - open it up and be in business.  I promise to show a photo when I get it all cleaned out and set up.  PINKY SWEAR

My last purchase was this heavy, heavy box full of old door hardware - locks and inner door workings that use a skeleton key to operate.  They just looked interesting to me, so I decided to buy them.  He explained to me what each piece was and which one went with which other one.  He really was nice and wanted his items to be used and appreciated.  I need to research these and see if they are ebay worthy or just take them to the Junk Ranch.  

Anyway, the real story about this particular sale is the journey and not necessarily the junk in this case.  I knew I needed to post because you guys have just been sitting and hitting REFRESH all week waiting for me to post. RIGHT?  Ha.  :).

Thanks for listening and happy junking to you all!


  1. People can be so funny about their stuff, can't they? There's always a story, and what I like about doing this is finding the stories as well as the stuff. Nice haul.

  2. I went to a place like that quite a few years ago. It was full of all of the things I love to collect. I was the only one there and the guy followed me around relentlessly and commented on every single thing I picked up. In a really annoying way. I finally left without buying a single thing. Who knows what his prices would have been but he was just bugging the heck out of me so dang bad!


  3. Oh man, a 20,000 square foot warehouse full of junk? COUNT ME IN! I can't imagine the stuff you didn't buy because it was so hard to see.

  4. Love that you found stuff at a real life Hoarder's sale! I do not have the boxed set (giggle) but love that you found out his episode. Love the pottery piece and the carriage clock so much!
    Linda (who is tired from hitting refresh:)

  5. OHHHH, that sounds like so much FUN!! Yes, rather Creepy though... Glad you got out safe!! Dominoes?!! Like I've said before "You have to be careful what you wish for!!" ;-)

  6. You seem to live in some twilight zone of thrifting! I think I need to make a road trip and visit your area or just haul off and move there. I can't believe the sales and things you find.

  7. I loved reading about the journey!

  8. thank goodness, I think my refresh button was getting overheated. HAHA. Now I have to go find that episode

  9. The post was worth the wait! I love sales like that, where you get to go just dig to your hearts content and you never know what you will find! The excitement is almost better than the finds. Ok not, but still! I love that metal box. Those are so handy. Also digging that corn feedsack. I am obsessed with them lately. Good sale on that old stapler wire. Dont you love when some rando weird item sells for good money on ebay? I once found some old fountain pen nibs (the metal end things) for .50 at a garage sale, I resold them for $150.00! Gotta love the bay!


I love my comments. I'd love to respond to everyone, but if you don't have an email address tied to your ID, please sign your name so I will know who you are! It makes it nice to know who is saying what. Now, leave a comment! Please? ;o)

I Can See You!

Look at my Visitors!

Fellow Junk Followers