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.

Monday, October 12, 2020

Junk Ranch Fall 2020 COVID Edition

Hello friends.  It seems I only come here occasionally lately. I find Instagram a fast and easy way to post my finds, but I do miss writing here,  IG is all about fast and few words. I am all about the words. Lots of words!!!!

We were able to have the fall Junk Ranch last weekend. It was thought that we might not be able to have it. But the owners worked hard to ensure a safe shopping event and it was approved by the state health department.  People online seemed very excited about the prospect of getting out and doing something fun.. (It has been a long hard year, right?). But, we weren’t entirely sure if the people would actually come.  Well as the old adage goes, if you build it, they will come,  And man did the people show up! Everyone had on their masks and stayed distanced apart.  The line started at 8:00 in the morning and was bumper to bumper until 2:00. People kept arriving after that as well.  Many of the vendors sold out or nearly sold out of inventory. All of the food trucks ran out of food. It was crazy! I sold so much vintage Christmas, other vintage and lots of the things that I had made.  It sure makes me happy when someone walks up holding one of my creations with a big smile on their face.  It was a record show for everyone, I am sure. And we can’t wait for next year. 

Here are a few photos, which look pretty much like all my shows. My set up works great, so why change it? 

One of those smiling faces I mentioned. 

Cubbies full of smalls, vintage holiday and other sweet things. 

I worked until the very last minute setting up, so I was never able to bet photos of ht booth.  Luckily, The Bean ran around and snapped a few just as the air horn sounded and the gates opened.  

 My booth was very busy al day long.  There was a food truck behind me and there were two men running it.  They had watched me setting up my colorful Christmas items and sort of had a look on their face like I wouldn’t sell much.  On Friday about 4:00, they came out to say “Boy oh boy!  You are popular!!!  They came running and they lined up for you!!!”  Made me feel good that the realized it.  

A peek inside of the things I made.  Sorry it’s a little dark.  I sold a lot and that really made me so very happy.  

I’m posting this on the iPad, which is a first for me.  I’ve never tried the keyboard or blogging from it.  But, I think I have it figured out, so MAYBE I’ll get better at blogging again.  Oddly enough a lot of the Instagrammers are starting blogs and I’m all “I’ve been blogging forever!”

I went to the bins latest week and scored a ton of great old vintage toys.  I couldn’t
believer that I just kept pulling one out after the other.  

Super cute fisher price musical duck pull toy.

Tommy Turtle

Chiming apple that was SUPER ANNOYING in the ride home.

Dying over this chipping old red telephone.

Fisher Price wind up clock.  I found lots more but these were the best scores.  I want a Fisher Price Camper so bad, but I’ll never actually buy one, so I was hoping I would pull one out of there.  Maybe next time?

I hope you are well and thank you for still stopping by from time to time.  A special hello to Janet who I know who’ll see this and always remembers me on my birthday and at Christmas.  

Tuesday, July 14, 2020

The Masked Thrifter

Hello again!  Oh, I miss blogging.  I really should get back to it, but really, there is NOTHING blogworthy in my life right now.  Covid is bad here in NW Arkansas.  It is not a second wave, as we did not have it very bad here in the beginning.  Everyone stayed home and it was kind of under control  But then stuff started opening again and the people got restless, so out they went.  There is a very large population of Hispanics and Marshallese in our area.  Most of them live in large family units, which is normally a very wonderful thing.  But, living together, working together, riding together  - once one gets it, everyone in the household gets it.  It is a very scary thing. 

(Hot sweaty me leaving the booth.)

 I do get out, but I always wear a mask, use sanitizer and wash my hands.  I go to the grocery store for us and for my parents, so it seems that I am there a lot.  I go to my booth once a week for a quick straighten up and refill.  I do go thrifting, but maybe just a quick run into Goodwill if I am in the area and the Bis when I start to get a little stir crazy.  I never go crowded places, parties, events, things like that.

The Spring Junk Ranch ended up being canceled, which was a good thing.  Covid was on the uptick and the state made it mandatory that all vendors and shoppers wear a mask.  I am an advocate for masks, but being outside in the open in 100 degree weather, was not sounding great.  The owners made the right decision to cancel, even though it was a tough call.  We are hopeful for October, but it remains to be seen if it will happen or not right now. 

I've been trying to get back into ebay, but with terrible results.  I have had eleven sales in the past few weeks, but had to cancel SIX of them due to people not being able to pay or living out of the country and not wanting to use the Global Shipping System.  What a HUGE waste of time to list and then have to cancel over and over again.  ebay used to be fun, but it really isn't anymore.  People say treat it like a business and don't get your heart involved.  But, that is what made it fun.  

I'm trying to get re-registered with Amazon to sell books, but I can't figure out how to get the individual plan and not the monthly plan.  I seem to be having problems with everything I touch lately.  Lol,  

Here are some things I have bought over the past few months in case you need a little junking fix.

Child's train case.  It is SO CUTE!

A small adorable suitcase.

All new Christmas, but it looks vintage and it all was 25¢ each.  So, YES!

Vintage Shuttlecocks (giggle) in a tin.  10¢

California orange shaker set.

All the vintage Easter fluff I found at the bins.  

A ridiculously HUGE teddy bear from the Bins.  
He was 50¢.
I will put him in the booth at Christmas-Valentines.  

A cute little kitchen set modeled by The (masked) Bean.

Odd's and ends from a few sales on Saturday.

 A vintage honey jar with a great label.

A pixie in a turtle.  That makes complete sense, right?

Random Christmas finds.

An barn sale full of red, white and blue finds.

New framed prints from the Bins.  
Great for the booth and Holly Jolly Junk Ranch.

Bag upon bag of vintage craft rings.  

No idea what I might use them for, but when I find massive amounts of anything useful, I snag it.  

A HUGE bag of great colorful vintage curlers from the Bins.  Again, I dint' have an idea for them when I grabbed them.  I just loved the colors.  

Then I found this GIANT JAR and thought....Hey!  


Great handmade church.  Red feels naughty somehow.  

A quick trip to the Salvation Army. 

Christmas bin finds.

This cute damned cursed bear.  
I have sold him TWICE and had to cancel both times.  I might be forced to keep him, but I am sort of mad at him right now.  

This great Rushton Duck.  Found at the flea market for 99¢.
I did sell him and it was a good sale.  
(But, dang he was CUTE!)

PINK cake carrier pulled out of the bins.

All the Zane Grey books from the bins.  
I wanted them to be featured at the Spring Junk Ranch.  
They look so patriotic!  But, they will keep, I suppose.

I hope you are all well.  Please leave a comment filling me in on your lives.  Plus, I am on Instagram at @sharamonkeybox  I do post mindless drivel on the daily over there.  It is quick and easy .


Thursday, April 23, 2020


Hello, friends.  I hope this finds you safe and well.  It's such a weird and crazy time in our lives right now, isn't it?  I last came here on March the 1st to post, but I never finished it.  Here is an excerpt.....

Hey, hey everybody!  It's me coming to you from the depths of the flu.  Well, it might not be the actual flu but it is a nasty terrible sickness, whatever it is.  Everyday brings an new symptom, but another disappears.  Right now its a bad cough that has lingered for two weeks straight which brought on a pulled muscle in my shoulder and what might be a hernia.  Whee!  In answer to your question, no I haven't been to the doctor yet.  We all three have it and our insurance is LOUSY and doesn't pay a dime for doctor's visits - so that will be $750 out of pocket.  But, we will go if we don't see improvement soon.  There's so much scary stuff out in the world right now - it terrifies me!!!!

We were sick for about three weeks in different stages and degrees.  Mostly the congestion and the cough just went on and on and on.  And we had zero energy.  I'm sure that by now you have figured out that I a pretty sure we all had Covid-19 before it became the thing that it is now.  I feel lucky that we all three made it through it on our own and did not have the effects like a lot of people.

While I was sick, I did not see my parents.  I didn't want them to get sick because it was SO different and I knew it would be VERY hard on them  I am so thankful that I made that decision.  Another thing that I did which I thought was a bit too much at the time,  but turned out to be the way of the world - we ordered a pizza one night. I put the money on the door with a note that we had the flu and to leave the pizza ad RUN.  I'm glad I did that too!

Our lives have been a little crazy since this all started.  Living with a Bread delivery man has been a bit insane.  My days are filled with waiting for him to get home so I can disinfect him, wash his clothes, get him to take a nap, feed him and get him to bed so he can get up at 1:00 and do it all over again.  Bread sales, as you know, have been INSANE.  Empty shelves every day, customers following him to the display to get bread and then demanding to check the dates on the bread.  It was just baked a few hours ago, Lady.  Anyway, you might remember that we purchased the route about two years ago.  Which for once has been in our favor with the crazy sales.  The first week with the out of control buying and sales, he made over one months commission.  It seems awful to make money during a pandemic.  But, he is risking his life and our lives every day being out in the public and dealing with the ever changing rules and regulations.  (I know I said that I think we already had the COVID, but we are living like we didn't.  We want to get the blood test when it's available so we will know and so we can help by donating plasma).  We have given away bread and money to charity to ease our conscience. We are not rich by any means. Darn it. 😂

I stay home except for the grocery store and the doctor with my Mom.  I do go on rides and drive past the thrift stores and wish for the olden days when I could go in to shop and I think about the future and if I will feel confident going back in there ever again. I think I will - in time.

The Junk Ranch is still scheduled for the middle of June.  I have mixed feelings about that, but there is still time for preparation-both mentally and physically.

I bought a Chromebook just so I could get back to blogging and this is my first attempt to use it.  I rarely ever use the desktop anymore and I'm not the best typer on the iPad.

I hope you  are all safe and healthy.  I miss you all.

Friday, January 10, 2020

Happy 2020!

Happy New Year - ten days late.  :)

Yes, I used upside down "5's" because I don't seem to have any 2's.  Must find 2's this year!

I'm watching the weather right now.  We are in a tornado warning with heavy rains and flash flooding coming in the next few hours.  It's 65 degrees but will be 30 in the morning with freezing rain, ice and snow.  If you don't like the weather in Arkansas, stick around a day - it'll change.  A LOT.  

A week or so before Christmas, I noticed that the Free Little Pantry up the street was empty, so I filled it up.  I put in staples for meals, soups, crackers, spaghetti, cereal, Pop-Tarts and snacks like crackers, pudding, nuts and raisins.  Plus, since it was the holiday, I added cookie and cookie mix, candy and some treats.  It was empty the very next day. I've noticed that it fills up and is emptied quickly.  I'm going to fill it up once a month.  I mention this because not everyone knows that the Free Little Pantry exists around the United States.  The Free Little Library's came first,  But someone right here in Fayetteville came up with the idea for the Free Little Pantry. So,if you see what you might think is an empty Library - it might actually be an empty Pantry.  It's a good place to add extra things from your cupboard that you might not use in time or maybe pick up a few items at the store next time and add them to it.  

I FINALLY got all the Christmas packed up and in storage.  I love it all so much, it's hard to pack up.  How come its totally okay to have a Kansas City Chiefs collection or a NASCAR collection and leave it out all year long, but if you leave your Santa's out all year long, people think you are crazy?  SO NOT FAIR.  I'm trying to put things back where they belong and apparently my mind is slipping, because I have NO IDEA how it all fit before??? But, I am going slow and culling things out along the way.  

My big delicious bowl of vintage Mercury glass beads is one of my hardest things to pack up.  So, guess what, Chicken Butt?  I LEFT IT OUT.  Call me crazy.  But, Mmmmmmmmm.  

Couldn't you just dive in and take a dip in it? Oh, my.

Well, I am just rambling while I watch the weather.  I have had numerous people contact me saying they recently found my blog.  Maybe reading blogs is making a comeback? Instagram is fun for photos and quickie stories.  But, I LIKE WORDS.  LOTS OF WORDS.

You know what words I don't like?  





So, don't you worry about seeing those words here.  

See, I really am RAMBLING.  

I guess I'll go charge my phone and hunker down for the storms.  

Hope you are all safe and comfortable!  

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