Thursday, August 28, 2014


So, I was in this woman's backyard on Saturday, looking at the stuff she had for sale.  Pretty typical for me.  I think she used to have some kind of crafting/scrapbooking store, since there were multiples of many of the kinds of things one would find in a store like that.  Usually that kind of stuff is not my style, but there were a few things I liked, except that they were priced just a tad high for me.  I was contemplating making an offer, when she says:

"There's more in the basement, if you want to look."

Never one to turn down an invite to look at more stuff, I followed her instructions,  walked through the garage, and down into the basement.  One of these days I'm going to do that and never be heard from again.  There was a lot of stuff down there, including some vintage Christmas, but none of it was priced.  I decided I just did not feel like gathering up a bunch of it, hauling up out of the basement, finding out it was too much for me, and then negotiating in the heat.  It was the last stop on the list, and I already had a van full.  I'm also not in a big hurt for stuff right now.  Given all of that, I tend towards leaving everything for the next buyer.  Maybe that makes me a bad junker.  I don't know.

Churches for burning incense

Doves for holding candles
 As I was turning to go, I saw this shelf full of Mexican terra-cotta artwork.  Lots of wonderful pieces, all priced--well-priced at that!  It's like it was put there just for me.  I carefully emptied some other stuff out of a box, then equally carefully put the pieces in it.

When I got back upstairs with the box, she asked me what I had found.  I handed the box to her and simply said:

This isn't all of them.  There were two that would not fit.


She laughed.

Then agreed with me.

And gave me a discount.  

It pays to call it like it is sometimes!

I'm glad I've finally gotten in the habit of bringing paper to wrap purchases with when I go saling. 

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Eddie M's Finds and Stories

Eddie-tor's Note:  The title of today's post is an homage to a long-running classic comic book.  Anyone know what it is?

Saturday was an interesting day:  Lots of sales.  Lots of finds.  Lots of misses.  And lots of stories.

Keith broke a vase at the first sale we stopped at.  I was absolutely mortified, but the seller took it in stride.  He did pay for it, even though she said he didn't have to.  After we left, I told him we had to review the rules:  "We don't rummage around and break the people's nice things."

I was making quite a pile at this sale, too.  If she had thrown us out, I would have been heartbroken!

Collapsible IKEA storage boxes--NIP!

I bought one of those Rubbermaid-like plastic storage shelves at the next sale.  I always need more shelving, either in the booth or the storage room.  I can never be organized enough it seems.  The seller was being very dramatic about everything he sold.  Big sighs and moans every time someone asked about a price:  "Oh!  Well, I guess that is going to be a dollar!"  He did everything but put his hand to his forehead and swoon.

I went to the first sale I've ever been to run by nuns.  These were plainclothes, modern nuns, not the ones in habits, which would had made it more cool.  I recognized one of them from a job I had about twenty years ago.  It was one of the only estate sales I've ever been at where they had items priced at ten cents.  I nearly died when I got to this one.  There was a huge mass of awesome vintage small furniture that had already been sold in the driveway.  I checked out the prices as I went in the house.  There were vintage metal patio tables marked for seventy-five cents!  I died, I tell you!  That whole mass of furniture cost about ten bucks all together, and there was a ton of it!  I try never to dwell on items that I miss out on, but this batch made it pretty hard.

Still, I did pretty well!

Horrible pic, I know.
 Of course, there would be religious items at a nun-run sale!  I love that green pitcher.

The next sale we hit, had this amazing Hoosier cabinet that had been priced at $25!  Of course, it was already sold.  Must...not...dwell...on it!  This is where I found the mysterious metal pot.

It's heavy and solid.  The sides are a couple of inches thick and the handles are big and round.  It's been spray-painted gold, to boot!  In other words, it is exactly the kind of thing I simply cannot pass up. I'm going to sell it as a planter, but it doesn't have any drainage.  It would look nice on a porch with a fern, though.  The seller said her mother owned it for years, but never knew what it was really for.  Any ideas?

Nancy Drew, Plastic Buddhas, and Itty Bitty Heath Ledger Joker!

We hit a benefit sale for a group called the "Home Birth Coalition."  I had never heard of it before, but they had good stuff.  One mother there was breast-feeding her child while she was shopping.  I've never seen that at a sale before.  I got a bunch of stuff there.

I don't do a lot of stuffed toys, but I do a lot of character toys!
I had to stalk a little girl of about two to get that Snoopy.  She was kind of wandering along and picking up things, carrying them around for a bit, and then dropping them and picking up something else.  You know, like little kids do.  Her mom would sweep in behind her and put whatever she dropped back where it came from.  She dug this awesome Snoopy out of a box of stuffed animals and I had to have it!  Of course, she held on to it longer than anything else!  I was beginning to think I was going to lose out on it, when she saw a doll and down went Snoopy!  Mom swooped in and I was right behind her!  Yes, I know how creepy that sounds.  Yes, I would do it again.  At least, I draw the line at snatching it out of her hand!  I do have standards!

Yes, I know my booth is a white hot mess!
 When we pulled up at this sale, I saw the most awesome thing I had seen all day:  this vintage drafting stand/desk.  I love the little storage cabinet underneath!  I checked it out when we got there, but wasn't sure it would fit in the van.  My routine in this situation is to buy my other items, then check out the van, ask Keith what he thinks, then go buy the large, unwieldy item.

White! Hot! MESS!

So, when I asked Keith, whose words of wisdom I value greatly, he lays this on me:  "You already decided to get it as soon as you saw it.  It doesn't really matter what I have to say."  I'm still deciding whether I'm shocked, hurt, tickled or amazed by this observation.  We had to take several things out and repack the van, but it went in!  You can kind of see how we had to work it in in the Mazda pic.  it was a bit of a struggle, but it was totally worth it!

I (heart) Bybee!
At the very next sale, I was welcomed by a couple sitting on a couch on the porch.  "Let us know when you're ready and we'll get off your couch."  My kind of people!  I didn't get the couch, but I did buy some Bybee pottery for a price that was so good, I had to ask if it was correct.  Then I saw this:

You can kind of see it around the white hot mess.
And I turned to the couple on the couch and said:  "That's not my couch, but that is my table!"  For the first time ever, I had to pay for an item and leave it.  It just would not go in the van with the drafting table.  I'm wondering if this is a trend for the future.

There was one more stop, where I made a great purchase, but that is a story for tomorrow.  I guess that's my sneaky way of drawing you back here tomorrow!  See you!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Super-Freaking-Cute Man!

I totally love finding cute super-hero toys!  Dig these fellas:

Aren't they totally adorable?  I love these dudes!  They're "Super Tots" which were premiums at Sonic a while ago.  I found them at a thrift at the beginning of the year and set them aside with a bunch of other small toys until I felt like pricing smaller stuff.  I bought a storage crate full of action figures and Matchbox cars the other day, so I had a small toy pricing spree.

By the way, if you deal in small toys, keep your eyes out for Beanie Baby storage cubes when you can find them cheaply enough.  They're one of the best ways to make a set of small things I've found.  They can't be busted open like plastic bags and they don't break when dropped like glass jars.  It will add a bit to your expenses, so look for cheap ones and price accordingly!  (I admit that they may not make the best display for your old marbles or vintage buttons, but they are dandy for little plastic army dudes!)

Anyway, these guys popped to the top of the pile and called out to be photographed and blogged.  I thought I had a Wonder Woman as well, but I didn't find her.  I did find Hawkwoman:

Say it with me:  Too. Freaking. Cute.

If I don't have a Wonder Woman floating around somewhere, I really, really want one.  And a Batman.  Those two would not only totally rock, they'd be total keepers. At least for a little while.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Monday Rambles

Welcome back to my life, as it was lived last week.  Yard sale tales and pics start on Wednesday.  I decided that they really deserved a post of their own, rather than being crammed in here.  There should be posts every day this week, in fact.  I hope you'll stop back.

We do have an important bit of business to deal with first, however.  The identification!  I got a lot of interesting responses to my request for information about this:


I put it up on Sir Thrift-A-Lot's Thriftasaurus party, hoping it would get some response.  I don't often join link parties, because my aesthetic is so different from other junk bloggers, but Sir-Thrift-A-Lot shares my love of pop culture from the past, so I felt he would be a good place to go. 

I picked up a few new readers from the link-up, which is always nice.  Welcome!  I also got a response from the good Sir himself!  Whee!  It turns out that he took it upon himself to research this little baby and found a similar item on eBay, which also contains key info that mine lacks, namely the words "Happy Birthday!"

Now to be fair, the ever-wonderful Shara suggested that idea in an email to me first, but the noble Sir is the one who confirmed it with evidence!  Thanks so much to everyone who added info and guesses to the quest.  I, myself, am a little heart-broken that it's not belly buttons, mainly because I get all sorts of odd ideas about how one could "enjoy" a belly button.

This does lead to a new mystery:  why doesn't mine actually use the word "birthday"?  I am guessing that it may have been a part of the packaging that has long since been lost.  Vintage finds, you are so enthralling, yet enigmatic!

Last night, I broke last month's sales record, so no matter what I do this week, I'll have a record month for the third month in a row!  Not even the fair slowed me down!  Good thing I found some good stuff over the weekend. 

I put my fall/harvest-themed items out last week, and they have already begun selling.  I don't really have that many, just a shelf or tow.  It's kind of a lead-in to Halloween for me.  The first Halloween load goes out next week and should all be out by mid-September.  I'll also be putting out a shelf of (gulp!) Christmas this week. Actually, it's already out.  I'm just going to move it to a more prominent place. 

I leave a bunch of Xmas dishes, especially Santa Coke glasses, out all year on a bottom shelf.  They'll sell bit by bit through the year and keep an out-of-the way shelf looking full.  I'm going to move them up a bit, so that I can begin adding to them a little at a time for a while.  I have enough space now that a little corner of Christmas won't distract from everything else. 

It pays to think like a retailer at this time of the year.  As people's minds turn to gift-giving, they often turn away from secondhand shopping venues, especially the true flea markets.  Stacks and stashes of decor items drive my sales from October through December.  That, plus new, unopened items, will keep me hopping this holiday season.  I want to keep my sales streak alive.

Today starts a new session at work.  I'm not totally sure what I am supposed to be doing.  The boss hinted at changes, but didn't really elaborate.  I'm heading in early to see what's up.  Friday is my next follow-up scan at the cancer center.  I'll get the results next Tuesday.  This week marks one year since my treatment ended.  I'm going to try to go to Goodwill in celebration!  This weekend is the big flea.  Labor Day is one of the twice a year antique wings out there, so I'll head out there on Monday to hunt for bargains.  Lots of dealers will have dollar tables on the last day.

Over the first two weekends in September, there are two different community sales in two nearby parks. I am debating setting up to sell in at least one of them.  It will depend on whether I can get anything pulled out of the shed and priced or not.  I do need to get back in there and work some more.  The next junk set out is coming up in mid-October.  I need to purge, so I can scrounge.  I'd like to do one more yard sale at the house, but I am running out of time for that.

I'm tentatively committed to crawling the Highway 60 yard sale in October.  There are several highway/route yard sales that crisscross Kentucky, including the mega Highway 127 sale that cuts through part of the state.  I tend to prefer the ones the begin and end here, like the 60 sale, especially when they cross through the part of the state I from whence I hail. 

I found out that there is even a sale that cuts through my old hometown.  Of course, I found that out two weeks after it happened this year, so it's on the list for next year.  I may even combine that sale with the graveside visit.  My mother would appreciate that.

I've rambled a lot today, huh? 

Sunday, August 24, 2014

What's in Mazda?

Yesterday was wooo-eeeee awesome!  I made it to every sale on my list (which doesn't always happen) and found treasure at nearly every sale.  Take a look at Mazda:

I love Mazda!
And that's not all of it! We had to go back to one house after we unloaded to pick up a cool work table that just wouldn't fit in this load.  It was an awesome day of finds and experiences.  I'll talk more about a couple of the experiences tomorrow and show some of the smalls on Tuesday and Wednesday.

In the meantime, here's a peek at some of the stuff:

A box of terra-cotta artwork

The little caption on this pic reads "Saved."  I love it!

Mysterious heavy metal pot

I'll have a better shot of this later in the week.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Monday Rambles

Oh my!  Where to begin?  Is it another week already?  Why, yes.  Yes, it is!  Ugh!

My main stressor from these past couple of weeks is still hanging out there, like some kind of Sowrd of Damocles waiting to smash down on my cute little head.  It has receded a bit, though, so it's not quite so pressing and threatening.  It's not ruiung my present right now, even though it's still threatening to make a mess in the future.  I've got a little more prep time before that hits, so it might not be as bad.  I still can't talk about it in detail, because others are involved and I don't yet have their okay.  I'd certainly appreciate your thoughts and support in the days ahead.  I'll spill the beans when I can.

I spent Friday in an all day training for work that actually turned out to be more useful than I thought it would be.  Of course, putting it into practice will be a lot more difficult than it seemed in the sanitary training environment.  Things get so much messier when you involve real people.

I worked at the booth all day on Saturday, so no sales to report.  I think this weekend will be a work on the house weekend, so most likely no yard sales then either, although I will probably hit a few in the neighborhood.

My sales at the booth did slow down a tad when the double whammy of school and the fair hit, but not nearly as badly as in the past.  In fact, I am running way ahead of even the past couple of months!  This could be another record month, unless things bottom out in the last half of the month.  Even if that happens, I'll still have a good month, thanks to the strong first half.

Posts will most likely be light this week.  There's just too much going on at the booth and work. I may sneak a photo post in, if I can.

My query from yesterday still stands.  Anyone who can tell me what that thing is on about will be deemed by me as a wise person for the ages.  However if we never figure it out, my favorite answers so far are Pat ('homocidal tendencies") and Lynn ("belly buttons").  Lynn actually had the same idea I did!

Happy belated birthday to Shara, who celebrated with a couple of celebrities and, um, a dead person!    

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Universal Pick Me Up

No matter what is going on. 

No matter what is going wrong. 

There's always one sure antidote:

Cat videos!

The universal pick me up!

Check out Cole and Marmalade on YouTube and Facebook.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014


To make up for yesterday's downer post, here are some things that made me happy yesterday.

Fun Sea Horses!

This one's for Laurie!

A Hulk Head Basket!

Works for Halloween or Easter!

A Cute Thor Pillow!

Thor Pillow, Not Throw Pillow!

A Little Rickshaw Scene!

I especially love the guy trailing behind.

A Fabulous Holy Water Font!

Seriously.  Look at that face!

These Fun Casper Toys!


It's not all bad!  It's just that the stressors are coming on a bit strong right now.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Monday Rambles

This will be a short one, as I'm running way late this morning.  I got really sick last night with what I think was food poisoning and Keith thinks was just a bad upset stomach.  I've never had an upset tummy that made me sweat profusely and feel like I was passing out before.  Worst nausea since chemo.

I seem to be better now.  I slept a little later than normal, but I'm going to head into work.  Not the best start to a week,

In fact, it's more like the continuation of last week, which was a pretty sucky week all together.  It was kind of just one minor irritation piled on top of another all week long, each one complicating the last one, over and over.  And in the midst of it all was a large, major complication that forced me to make some decisions I did not want to make at all.  I can't really talk about any of it yet, but I anticipate that there will be a long post about some of it in the future, because there is a MAJOR change looming, one that I am not the least bit happy about right now.

The only real bright spot was my sales for the week, which stayed consistently high.  Very high, in fact.  I've already made rent, in a record nine days.  Woo hoo!  Now, even if school and the fair both starting on Wednesday do deliver a blow to my sales, it won't be crushing.  Unless it's goose egg city from here to the 31st, I'll be okay this month.

Even the yard sales were dreary on Saturday.  It rained on and off all day, so we went to two indoor sales and a porch sale.  The Mazda shot almost isn't worth showing.

Don't be fooled by that big tub on the right.  It's totally empty!

Sorry to be such a Debbie Downer today.  I've got to get ready for work.  Posting will be uncertain this week, but I'll try to update stuff on Facebook as I can.

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Family Photo Parade

I avoided the temptation to call this "Phamily Photo Parade."  I have a thing for alliteration, you know.  Too many comic books as a kid.

My great aunt passed away the other day.  She was the last surviving member of my grandparents' generation.  The family has been going through some of the photos, etc that she left behind, and one of my cousins sent me some pictures of my mother, among others. 

I was really touched by this gesture, since there were a couple in the lot that I didn't have and one I had never seen before.  A few years before he died, my grandfather divided up the family photos between my mom and uncles, but he did so in a really random order.  Instead of keeping family units together, he just sort of made piles for each of them with no importance given to the subjects of the photos.  As a result, there are some pictures of my mother as a child that I always wanted and do not have.  Included in this lot were a couple of shots of her as a young child, which really touched me.

They were such a great and unexpected treasure, that I thought I would share a few here.

School picture of my mother

Another one

Guessing at her age here, but I think this was taken in 1943-1944.

My brother and me on my ninth birthday.  STYLIN'!

I had never seen this pic of my grandfather (center) with his parents and my mom and uncle.

Uncle Larry's school pics.
Since we're rapidly approaching my 50th year, and I keep getting more and more nostalgic, I may dig some of the photos I have out and scan a few sometime.

Tuesday, August 05, 2014


How did it get to be August already?  I seriously have so much to do before the year is out.  Seriously.

I have to:

Do my regular work stuff
Do my regular booth stuff
Have two more cancer center follow ups
Turn 50
Celebrate turning 50
Go camping with Keith
Go to the big flea market on Labor Day
Read comics
Clean out the shed
Clean out the storage
Clean out the junk room
Have lunch with the Hulk
Get the fall/harvest stuff ready to sell
Get the Thanksgiving stuff ready
Get the Halloween stuff ready
Get the Christmas stuff ready
Put all that stuff out at the appropriate times
Go to special training for work
Do a bunch of regular trainings for work
Rearrange the booth
Make more Craigslists
Play poker with Batman and Wonder Woman
Watch Batman carefully, because he cheats
Hope that my class on reselling gets enough people to happen
Prep for that class if it does
Go to some boring-ass meetings
Finish this book
Get ready for the next junk set out
Write blog posts
Keep Facebook up to date
Get back to work on my top secret booth project
Have a yard sale
Have a book sale
Do the Highway 60 sale
Scan stuff
Crochet doileys for the pixies, who are always soiling their doileys
Eat Mexican food
Clean off this damn desk
Ride out the yard sale season
Buy stuff
Sell stuff
Buy a new belt
Figure out Thanksgiving plans
Have tea with the Hobbits
Make a doctor's appointment
Make a dermatologist appointment
Find out what you have to do to get married in Chicago
Get married in Chicago
Read blogs
Comment on blogs
Take pictures
Get my bike fixed
And so on
Learn to juggle elves
Or is it elephants?  I forget...
And so forth
And etc etc etc

There's only one thing to do.  I have to take a nap.  Then I'll figure out how to get all this done.

Monday, August 04, 2014

Monday Rambles

I'm not sure how it happened, but somehow I managed to pull out another record-setting month in the four digits!  July was even higher than June in total sales, and that was with about four days of really low sales.  I'm starting to gain a lot of confidence that maybe I've finally set on a course that works for my booth.  It's still way too early to come to think of this as a set pattern, but I am really freaking happy right now.

August will tell the tale, I'm afraid.  This is, after April, the hardest month there is to sell in this town.  What is it with the "A" months that makes them feel they have to rain on a junker's parade like that?  April has spring break and the beginning of the dreaded Derby festivities.  August has back to school (which is next week) and the Kentucky State Fair (which is also next week).  We'll just see what happens, I guess.

In the meantime, I'll keep things stocked and ready as best I can.

Which hasn't actually been very good lately.  I realized on Friday that I have totally, and I do mean totally, lost control of my spaces.  "Hot mess" doesn't even begin to describe it.  Stuff is just crammed everywhere, with little to no rhyme or reason.  People can get into my booth and out of my booth easily, but that's it.  I have no idea how stuff is selling so well.  Seriously, I don't.  The only thing that is in some kind of semblance of order is the comic books.

My plan this week is to rearrange and reshuffle stuff, rather than restock.  I'll put out new stuff for the weekend, but will wait until Friday to do it.  I have a couple of ideas for themed groupings of merchandise I want to do.  (I'm no good at displays, but I can get like items all together.)  If it works, I'll take some pictures.

It hit me really hard over the weekend that it's August. That means I've got to get my "harvest" items ready to go out and have Halloween on deck for next month!  Sheesh!  It's almost time for Christmas stuff!  Ack!

A junker's work is never done, I guess.  Good thing I like love doing this stuff!

Mata ne!  (I've been watching anime again.  The new Sailor Moon Crystal series totally rocks!  It totally updates the original series, but remains faithful to the source material.  The art, based on the manga, is gorgeous and the animation is awesome.  Highly recommended.)

Sunday, August 03, 2014

What's on the cart?

I forgot to do a Mazda shot today, so here's the big stuff on the cart coming into the Peddlers Mall.  i also didn't take any individual shots of said big stuff, so there won't be a reveal tomorrow.  I know.  I know.  Bad junk blogger.  But you love me anyway!  (I hope.)

Feel free to make some guesses in the comments as to what all is there.

There were also a couple of boxes of smalls (including a new stash of comics), but those went right into storage for pricing later on.

Look closely. Do you see the elephant?  Me neither.
It wasn't the greatest day for sales, but it wasn't the worst either.  It was just slow going with not very many large finds.  It was the closest thing to a bust I've had this year, but never quite reached "bust" proportions.  In the end, I was glad I went out.  I got stuff to sell.  And I had fun.  That's all that matters.

Some stories tomorrow.

Friday, August 01, 2014