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.
*Those are my Great Grandparents up there. My Great Grandma was the original Martha Stewart. She threw a great party and decorated for every holiday. I want to be her when I grow up. Oh wait! I am!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Junking With My Dad: New Payment Options

Saturday I went to my Dad's house for a late birthday celebration.  My idea of a celebration is JUNKing, so we went to an auction down the street from his house.  It had started a couple hours earlier but from what I could see it all looked like man junk - tools, lawn stuff and most of it seemed fairly new.  I went out to the backyard where I heard them say they were unloading a shed full of Christmas and linens (Okay, I ran out there!)  but it was old bedspreads, newer Christmas greenery and a bunch of lights.  I didn't see a single thing that interested me, so we left without a bid on one thing.  *insert pouty face* (I also found out that everything was being sold because the man went to prison for molesting his Foster Daughter, so suddenly everything skeeved me out and made me uncomfortable.)

Right up the street there is a lady that has a perpetual yard sale every single weekend.  I would normally steer clear of it, but since I had never been, we stopped.  My Dad knows her (and I actually rode the school bus with her when I was a kid) and he often stops down just to visit with her.  He's always finding something from her and she says, "Just take it and bring me a beer someday."  He's gotten quite a bit of good stuff with that payment plan.  :)

I dug around for quite a bit while they visited and I made a pile of stuff.  I got a nice pile of old fabric, three old dictionaries, a pile of sheet music books and a few other ephemera type items that I didn't bother to photograph.  I had a vintage pink plastic birthday cake pedestal that winds up and plays "Happy Birthday" in my hands, but somehow I didn't get home with it.  My Dad is going to go see if she has it this weekend.  *fingers crossed*

I spotted this huge old wooden crate with this giant glass bottle in it under a shelf.  I pulled it out and saw that the top of the bottle is broken.  But, as I looked it all over - I decided it was super cool and I really needed to save this thing.  It is marked 1884 from France and it is a Burgundy wine bottle.  The bottle is old, heavy and really just lovely.  I want to see if the local glass guy can grind it so it isn't a death trap or cap it off or something.  If there's any chance of harming it, I will just leave it as is. I want to add ball feet and a table top to it to make it a side table of some sort.  I found a crate with an unbroken bottle that sold on ebay for $695.00, so I am really happy that I decided to buy it - broken even.  I paid $2.00 for it - so not bad, not bad at ALL.  

I paid $2.00 for this old horse wooden horse shelf.  I can't decide if I should paint it or leave it as is.  I think horse trophies, ribbons and some old books would really look great on it in a girl's room.  These photos are all as I bought stuff - dirty and grubby.

I saw these big metal suitcases lined up in the driveway as we were leaving.  The bright colors appealed to me.  I asked my Dad to see how much they were and he got the old, "Take them and bring me a beer" line, so we grabbed them and loaded them up.  They have cleaned up pretty good and look great all in a colorful stack.  I was hoping to get the big stickers off the tops, but they seem pretty well adhered.  They held presentation materials for something.  They are as big as a suitcase.  They will be headed to the next Junk Ranch.  

So, a few new projects and some junk for the Junk Ranch - a good weekend in my book!  Hope yours was good as well!

Friday, August 15, 2014

Today is......

Joe Jonas's birthday.  
He is 25 years old.

 Happy Birthday Joe!

Today is Jennifer Lawrence's birthday.  
She is 24 years old.
 Happy Birthday Jennifer!

Today is Julia Child's Birthday.

She is...well, she's dead.  
But, Happy Birthday anyway, Julia!

Today is Ben Affleck's birthday;
He is 42 years old.

 Happy Birthday Ben!

Today is MY birthday!
I am, well, somewhere between Ben Affleck and Julia Childs.  
(A lot closer to Ben than Julia, THANKYOUVERYMUCH!)

And, just in case you are worried - here's this years BEAUTIFUL cake!  
No Cake Wreck this year! 

Monday, August 11, 2014

The Week in Junk: My Heart is Happy

Despite not going to any yard sales this weekend, I still managed to acquire a good amount of junk.  And by "junk" I mean wonderful lovely vintage goodness that I cannot even believe that I now own.

Early last week the mail lady knocked on the door with a hugely gigantic box.  "It's a big one!" she said.
Inside the box was the green basket weave tin picnic basket that I have been lusting after for YEARS. When I picked it up, it rattled so I opened it and the other green basket was inside IT!  I was gobsmacked!  Add in a couple of German paper eggs, a slew of pricey Flea market-y magazines and a a few other items that didn't make it in the photo and you have yourself one HELL of a box of HAPPY MAIL.  All of this goodness came from Chicago from Chanelle a long time blog reader and Instagram follower.  I mean, seriously, how nice was that?  And generous.  And thoughtful.  Oh my.  How very thoughtful.  Thank you Chanelle.  

I still had the goosebumps from kindness about that box when I had a message on IG from Amy the Junk Ranch founder to come out to a sale she was having and pick up some things "I think you might like".  Now Amy runs the Junk Ranch and has lots of avenues for selling, so I don't know why she decided to just GIVE me these things, but she did.  (I have persuaded her to take a bread rack for her supplies, so that makes me feel a bit less greedy and overwhelmed.) 

I know you can't see all the goodness in this photo, but there are vintage chocolate tins, an old metal toy drum, a sweet old bunny, a wonderful print, baby toys, old cards and ephemera, baby hangers and a bunch of other wonderful old vintage sweetness.  It is all in this amazing old wooden rolling play pen that has the sweetest graphics and it even chimes when you pull it.  I think I am going to devise a way to hang it and use it as a display shelf.  It is just way to sweet for it's own good.  Thank you so much Amy.  

I haven't figured out why people are so good to me.  I do try to pay it forward and be a good person.  But, I am always just amazed at how very nice people can be in this world.  The stuff, the things - it's all great - but really - it's the nice-ness and the love that really gets to me.  It really makes my heart happy.  :) 

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Bread Racks and Metal Scraps

*I did a little changing up on the old blogaroo- bigger type, wider side aisles.  LOOK AT ALL THE ROOM!  Is it easier to read?  I read another blog and it has the tiniest faintest print.  I want to read it SO badly but I can hardly make it out.  So, I wondered if my blog was hard to read.  I don't think it really was, but hey a little bit bigger for those aging eyes (Who are you looking at?) and wider sides for bigger pictures.  What can be wrong with that?????

So, the bread company that The Breadman is working for right now is in the process of changing over from using rolling metal racks to using flat trays that stack up and roll on a wheeled base.  Over the past few weeks, TBM has driven around to all the stores in the area and picked up these racks and.....I dare not even speak it... taken them to the SCRAP YARD. They pay $180.00 a ton and he has personally scrapped over $2,500.00 worth of these racks.  Such a waste.  I asked if there was any way that he could buy one at scrap value to use in my booth or for storage, so he asked and was told, "Take all you want."  Oh my!  In the end, he brought home eight racks and the twelve trays each one takes.  You could open a bakery in my backyard!  I did sell one on Craigslist, so we have seven left.  

They have these sliding trays that are adjustable.  You could store your craft supplies, inventory or just about anything on them.  Since they are all being DESTROYED, they are the antiques of the future.  In my opinion. 

I had 'pinned' this on Pinterest a long time ago.  This is a better quality rack, but look at all the things you could put on it at a show or in a booth.  Crazy good!  I love the added use of the little bread pans to hold smalls.  I think I am going to try this at the next Junk Ranch in October.  And take a few to sell.  I think the other vendors would LOVE them.

Every day when TBM would come home he would INSIST on telling me HORROR stories of what he saw go in the chipper at the Salvage Yard that day.   "Today a man had a couple boxes of old rusty railroad spikes."     "Today a lady drove up and had all these metal cubbies from a hard ware store.  They paid her $80.00 and then they chipped them up."  
I showed him this picture and he said, "Yea, just like that."

Is he trying to kill me?

Lara and I are trying to thrift ourselves some official looking Security or Inspector uniforms and then we are going to stand out on the highway and "inspect" these loads before they go in the Scrap Yard.  Things we like we will deem "unscrapable" and then offer to buy them.  Seriously, someone should be out there paying the Scrap yard a price a bit above the Scrap price and saving all these great old things from being destroyed. I have seen trailer loads of old motel chairs and ringer washers headed to the scrap yard.  It just makes me SICK.  

But, I can't save ALL THE JUNK.  So, I will have to be happy that I saved a few bread racks.  

Tuesday, August 05, 2014

The Week in Junk: Buying in Bulk

I haven't blogged in a week - that is unlike me!  Ever since I hurt my leg, whenever I sit in my office chair  - it THROBS.  So, I quit coming in there and sitting in my chair.  But, by golly, I need to blog, so here I sit.  And, luckily, my leg is some better, so that's a perk.  Oddly enough, when I am on my feet walking - my leg hurts only slightly.  So, I can still get out and go junking.  WHEW.  Had you worried there for a minute, didn't I?  Oh, I really think I could be on life support and still hit thrifts.  Do you ever see like a really, really OLD lady at the thrift - the one that has her oxygen machine in the cart pushing it along?  Yea, that will be me.  

So, Friday I went to a couple sales and I found not much at all.  I have left empty handed at so many sales this year. There is the fact that I don't drive very far away and I don't search out sales to go to so what I find is limited and I under stand that.  But, I don't want to tally up gas and mileage and what I paid to make a profit.  I am small potatoes, folks.  

The first sale I went to on Friday was the sale that Lara just blogged about.  It was up on a long, long windy dirt driveway that you had to get to down a long, long dirt road waaay out in the middle of NOWHERE.  I second guessed myself as I kept driving and driving.  I really wasn't far from my house at all - I think about 8 miles is all - but it was in the middle of NOWHERE and then, just as I began the ascent UP the driveway DING DING DING the low tire pressure light came on.  Craaaaaaap.  I half expected a flat when I left, but it was good.  (I am a bit anal about car issues).  

When I got inside the garage, two women were working there and they both looked up at me and said, "Oh, HI!" which meant they knew me.  I couldn't quite place them, so I asked them and we all agreed that we just knew each other from around town and at yard sales.  (Small town living...)  I bought a pile of stuff and they gave me a discount price of $7.00 since they "knew me".  (Small town living pays off....).  

The best thing I found was this tablecloth.  it was folded up inside out and had some dirt on it so I was told it was a quarter.  I washed it and now it is perfectly folded up in my collection.  I was just feeling sorry for myself for not having found a tablecloth in a very long time.  POOR PITIFUL ME.  :)

I also got this little handheld puzzle for 25¢.  This was one of my very favorite things when I was a kid.  I could solve it in NO time.  I have several of these, but I always pick them up when I find a good old one.  For the record, this one was scrambled when I found it.  I can still do them like a BOSS.
The second sale I went to was a big sale for a Non-Profit.  The Sheriff's Prisoner Transport van was sitting at the sale and I wondered why.  I wondered no longer when I walked into the warehouse and there were FIVE Deputies all in their uniforms, with their hands on their guns (in the holsters) and about twelve "prisoners" were helping with the sale.  It turned out that "prisoners" were hot check writers and no insurance drivers, so they weren't exactly "hard core" criminals.  If you are in jail and you volunteer to work somewhere, you get a day credit off your time.  NOT THAT I KNOW from experience, thank you very much.  Anyway, it was kind of a weird vibe, so I didn't stay long.  I did buy a couple things there.  
Terrible awful photo - sorry.  I bought twelve stainless steel restaurant creamers and nine clipboards at the "prisoner" sale for $6.00 total.  I love old book pages on old clipboards so I will take those to the booth and the next Junk Ranch.  I might make some pincushions out of the creamers.  Or a wind chime.  Or just sell them as creamers.  Who the hell knows.  I just buy stuff sometimes and figure it out later.  The old children's books and a handful of doilies all came from the first sale

Saturday I went out to the SCT and hit a couple more sales.

This Christmas tablecloth was marked as being ROUND, which it clearly is NOT.  Two tablecloths in as many days.  I'm back BABY!  I know I bought a few more things, but I have no memory of them - they all went to the booth whatever they were.  Hmmmm.

On the way back home, I stopped at one more sale where everything had been drastically marked down at noon and then half of that at 1:00.  I bought a toleware lamp that needs a new hurricane globe and all these trophies.

WHY DID I BUY THESE?  Bulk buying seemed to be the theme of my weekend.  I brought them all home and dismantled them into loose parts.  I have seen various things made out of the parts like wine stoppers with the cars on them.  Whatever becomes of them - they will be at the Junk Ranch in October.  

Today I made a quick stop at the thrift and scored a dozen of these vintage Baby Jesus jigsaw puzzles.  Some of the pieces are shaped like doves and hearts.  They are from the 1950's and probably for a Sunday School class.  I don't usually buy religious things, but these were just sweet enough to meet my requirements. 

So, that is a dozen trophies, a dozen creamers, a dozen puzzles, eight books, eight clipboards, six doilies and two tablecloths.  Yes, I buying in bulk is just the thing that I DO NOT need to start.  :O

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

The Week in Junk: What You Can Buy for $5.00

Once again, I didn't go to any yard sales this weekend.  SHOCK*HORROR*  Saturday we had Christmas in July at our house with my Mom and Step Dad.  It is a completely silly day - we cook out hot dogs and have a summery dessert  - I decorated the table in a Summer/Christmas theme:

This year it was a Kneehugger camping trip.  Any excuse to bring out the Romper Room camper set.  The best part of our Christmas in July are the gifts.  Strict rules apply - you cannot buy anything, it all has to come from your own house, wrapped in tissue paper and placed in a Walmart bag.  FANCY.  I received gloves, laxatives, microwave popcorn, and EMPTY gift box and a lot of other odd but hilarious to open items.  It is a silly fun day and MUCH needed at my house.  MUCH.  (More on that in time......)

Sunday I met up with Lara, the twins and our other junking friend Laurie at a big Antiques Show.  I thought it would all be pricey antiques, but it was mostly vintage things.  A lot of the sellers from the other shows were there and we are all getting to know each other.  It was fun to walk around and look at all the things that were for sale plus look for display ideas for my shows and booth.  Of course, all that looking makes you see things you want to buy.  Most were out of my budget, but I found just enough to make me happy and not be sad about missing yard sales the day before.  

On booth had hundreds of these new old stock signs.  It took me FOREVER to decide which one to buy.  I'm still not sure I made the best choice, but I do love this one.  It will look great in my cake decorating corner during the holidays.  

One of my favorite sellers had a big baggie of vintage Christmas items. I saw one item that made it worth the whole package and the price, so I bought it.  Lots of fun vintage things in the bag.

Spun head angels at the bottom of the bag were a sweet surprise.  

This pipe cleaner Santa is what I spied in the bag.  I just really, really, really LOVE this guy.  

After I left the Antiques Show, I popped into Goodwill.  
I spied this wonderful Peterboro Market Basket sitting on a low shelf with a book and a plastic cup in it.  I waited for someone to come around the corner and grab it, but no one did.  So, I grabbed it.  I was SO happy to see it was only $3.00.

It is lined with red GINGHAM oilcoth.  I looked on the Peterboro website and it is a $50.00 basket.  Nice!  You know how much I love a good handmade basket.  And this one is really useful, so that is an added bonus.

Today I made a quick run to the booth to straighten up and clean up after our Christmas in July sale we had all weekend.  On the way, I stopped at the SCT.  Lara had sent me a text earlier that she had been there too, but I don't know what she found.  Maybe she will tell us if she EVER UPDATES her blog?   (Like she has anything other to do with a new GIANT booth, three year old twins and a father recovering from a quintuple bypass.......)

So, back to my purchases.  I call it the Super Cheap Thrift for a reason.  Today, I spent $5.00. 

And this is what I bought.  For five dollars total.  :)

Two Readers Digest books with pretty covers - (already taken apart and made into clipboards), a wee piece of crockery, a JAPAN elephant, tiny angel playing the harp planter and a wooden crate that I will add a vintage label to before I sell it.  

A fun bunny planter.  

A hefty piece of Floraline pottery for 50¢.  I know - I don't do green and I'm not supposed to buy plain pottery - but I just cannot leave a piece of McCoy behind for 50¢!  

(Self imposed rules are easy to break).

Four small toleware trays, an accordian mug rack (these always sell) and a sugar shaker to make more string holders.  
Handmade Raggedy Ann.  I have a soft spot for Raggedy Ann dolls.  I don't keep them but I like getting them into the right hands.  She looks a little mischievous.  

And lastly a Barbie book.  I never knew there were Barbie books.  

Nothing is particularly valuable.  But, there is money to be made, projects to complete and a couple pieces of pottery for me, so it was a well spent $5.00. 

I do need a little help from you guys.  My friend Laurie gave me a baggie full of these hollow tubes.  She thought they were screwdriver handles, but I don't really know. 
The CANDY one is my favorite one - whatever it is. 
Any ideas?

Friday, July 25, 2014

Pitiful Purchases

Last week I didn't go to any sales, and this weekend I only went to one.  The weather is just hot and sticky and none of the ads look very promising.  Actually, I did go to two sales yesterday, but one was laid out really weird and I got claustrophobic and left.  I have some weird experiences lately, don't I?

I spotted one old badly made sign which usually means a good sale, so I hobbled up the long gravel driveway to the old shop building.  There was a lot of stuff, but mostly junk.  Bad junk.  The man running it was nice enough but he talked and talked and talked.  "That's a dollar, that's five dollars, make a pile, it's all gottta go" and on and on.  I like it when people are friendly, but there comes a point when you just want them to BE QUIET so you can shop.

I scrounged around and made a sad little pile of stuff and spent $6.00.  I got two big wooden bead Christmas garlands too that I already cut apart so they aren't in the photo.

These hand thrown pottery face mugs used to sell pretty well on ebay, but I don't know if they still do.  I don't think anything sells on ebay right now.  My auctions have tanked and the ones that DO sell - well, "I'll pay you next week".  I don't understand why you can "buy" something on ebay and not have to pay for it immediately.  

I love the old red tool organizer.  It was pretty gross when I found it.  The keys were all on a round key ring, then they rings were all hooked together and it was a big smelly wound-up mess.  But, you know me - I got them all apart and sorted out.  I sell those giant pencils in the booth whenever I find them - I guess they don't really make those as souvenirs anymore.  The two bank bags are unique - little denim bags complete with belt loops and pockets on the back.  

I went to the booth to straighten up and get ready for our "Christmas in July" sale after that sad sale.  There is a booth in the flea market that is ran by the Animal Shelter.  All the items are donated, the rent is free plus there is a donation bucket on the counter for them, so they do pretty well.  I think that's great.  Since their items are donated, they sell them cheap.  So I always take a look.  I don't always find something, but this time I did!

Sweet Royal Copely planter with a sweet bird on it.  

 And a second Royal Copely with a bird on it.  So sweet.  

I've been collecting matte white and pastel colored pottery for years.  
But, lately I have been more drawn to the shiny sweet pieces like these.  
 And this.
 And this.
 And this.  
You know what that means.
Uh oh.  
*Now that I see them all together I see they all have bird too.  

Sunday, July 20, 2014

The Week in Junk - Family Edition

So, you worried about me after that last post, eh?  I am fine - hell has not frozen over, I am still alive, it is not the end of the world and sadly, I did not win the lottery.  The truth is - I just wasn't feeling it the weekend.  Does that make sense?  Friday I did stop at one sale.  I got out of the car and walked about five steps and for some reason, I just turned around and got in the car and left.  There was just a vibe there that didn't' feel good to me.  Not just the junk, but the whole place.  I don't know why - I have been to some downright scary places all by myself way up on top of hillbilly mountain.  This was in town at a house with a family.  But, I just didn't think it felt like a hospitable place.  So, I left.  And I didn't go to anymore.  Part of the reason that I didn't do any others is that I seem to have hurt my MCL in my knee and I have a lot of trouble getting in and out of the car and walking.  All three of those things are kind of important!

Lest you think I have been without junk all week - well you are WRONG.


Wednesday we drove to the next big town over.  I dropped the boys off at the $3.00 Matinee to see Spiderman #346.  Okay, maybe it is just Spiderman 2.  Who cares, right?  The point is that I had THREE hours to go thrifting all by myself!  The bad news is that I had a strict $20.00 budget.  No, I can do a lot of damage at a yard sale with $20.00.  But, thrifts cost more.  So, I had to only get the GOOD STUFF.  I ended up buying everything that intrigued me and I only went $1.00 over my budget (But that's because I got hungry and had to grab a bag of Doritos...).

On the way to the thrifts I spotted a Wednesday yard sale which is just weird.  But the temperatures are awesome right now and the lady decided to just go with it.  I bought several things.  Almost all of which I have failed to photograph - what's the fun in that?  Sorry.

I did get this full box of vintage spun cotton doves.  They are on ebay right now.

 First thrift store netted a pile of books since ALL books were 5/$1.00 that day instead of their usual $2.00-$5.00 Each.  I bought then that looked interesting.  Three were Reader's Digest books that I gutted (ouch), one is a cookbook for The Bean and one is on ebay right now.  The rest already went to Goodwill.

Second thrift is my favorite LOL (Little Old lady) thrift.  In the back, I found a Rubbermaid tub with huge backs of fabric scraps.  I dug in there and found a gallon Ziploc bag crammed FULL of vintage feedsack scraps - the cute ones with kids and animals on them - for TWENTY FIVE CENTS!  I bought a 50¢ bag that had a handful of vintage mixed in with polyester and an HUGE bag cull of all polyester with one full feedsack inside it for $1.50.  When I checked out, the (LOL) lady told me that quilt scraps were half price, so I paid, $1.25 for it all.  She said, "I just don't know how to ring up half of 25¢": so I told her full price was fine.  She clutched her heart like I was the nicest person ever for giving her that extra 12.5¢.  I kept the good stuff and released the polyester back to Goodwill.

Third stop  - NOTHING.

Last stop was Goodwill across the street from the movies.  When I walked in, I heard laughter and immediately knew it was Amy Duggar.  I've never been to that particular thrift without seeing a Duggar or nine.  This was my first Amy sighting though.  

I bought this Ouija board.  The Bean said, "Get it out of here" as soon as he saw it and most of the people on Instagram agreed.  So, it is on ebay too.  

My find of the day was this:
Shawnee planter/candy dish with an adorable bluebird on it.  
It was only $3.00 - SUCH a deal!  
(That looks like a chip in the photo - but it's not, I promise!)

Friday after I worked in my booth, I looked at the new booth right beside mine.  For some unknown reason to me, they have priced almost everything in their booth 50¢.  It is going to take a lot of sales to make their $52.00 rent!  Yowza!  I bought a few things even though I can't resell them in my own booth (it's not really a rule, but it's frowned upon).  
Sweet little JAPAN pincushion girl.

Two JAPAN doggie ashtrays.
Sweet, sweet, sweet JAPAN doggie ashtray.  
It's so darn cute I just might start smoking!  

Saturday I had family to meet for lunch, so I skipped junking all together.  
But, when I saw my Aunt, she handed me a huge box chock full of vintage Christmas ornaments!  Shiny Brites, a spun head, a vintage ornament hanger box, German glitter boots and a lot of other great stuff.  Isn't that a great kind of family to have - the ones that "get" your junking????
Thanks Aunt Dorothy!

**Booth News:  I had a message today that one couple came in looking for vintage items for their apartment and they bought $98.00 worth of things from MY booth!  They money is great - but I get stoked when people like the things I sell!  Old framed advertisements, vintage flash cares, old school posters, etc.  That stuff makes me happy and I love it when someone loves it too.  Plus, $98.00!  Woot!

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