Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Goodbye September

This month has flown by so quickly! We didn't think it would. We have tried to strategically take at least one vacation day each month in order to create a three day weekend. Labor Day fell on September 1st this year extending the first weekend of the month. Knowing we had a mini-vacation planned for early October, we decided not to plan any vacation days this month at all. We thought it would drag. It hasn't. It's moved at just the right pace. Our four day mini-vacation is just a week away. We have mentally created our list of things to pack and we have left enough time to get everything done. 

There was still one more weekend to go, though and that, as always, would start with saling. Our list was not as big as it had been the past two weeks but there were still a few sales that looked promising. Our first stop was an easy choice. The pictures for this sale showed an aluminum Christmas tree in its box and one old felt Christmas decoration hanging on the wall. Both were very much of interest to us. We really didn't feel very confident that we would get the tree. First of all, we really didn't think that there were that many great sales out there. We didn't mean just for us...we meant for everyone. This first sale might be the dealer's choice. We might be one line. It might be a long line. Secondly, even if we DID get to the tree first, it might be way out of our price range. We were not willing to pay a lot. We have aluminum Christmas trees...two of them. We even have a third that has a little damage but can be fixed with some patience. We were interested in the tree but we did not HAVE TO have it.

We arrived at Sale #1 five minutes ahead of its scheduled time to find a line but not a bad one. Monica appears to be holding up a sign advertising the sale! She was just standing behind it. It took us almost an hour to get here and we were not disappointed with the line at all! We expected it to be much bigger! We were inside just moments after the doors opened but still too late to get the aluminum Christmas tree. One of the people at the front of the line is a dealer (who we see often) and he got to it first. That's okay...we were really not expecting to get it and we did get the felt Christmas decoration that we wanted. Rob found the room where it hung from the wall, removed the pushpin and had it in his hands in what seemed like seconds after we arrived inside.

There were two floors in this house and the basement seemed like a good place to start (after finding the felt Christmas decoration). There was a basement bar but it wasn't all the great. Monica happily searched behind it but found nothing.

The best thing in the basement was this great old television which was in amazing condition but did not come home with us. We already have one old television already! 

A search of the other rooms brought us some other things of interest. By the time we left, we had some old Halloween die-cut decorations, some records, a Hawaiian barkcloth dress for Monica, some decks of cards and a couple of Christmas items. We spent just twenty minutes here and found plenty of great things. Productivity was important. We had six stops on our list. Breakfast was also important. We were both hungry. A place to eat would be our next stop.

After breakfast, we went to Sale #2 which was described as "40 years of accumulation". What we saw, as we slowly drove by, was that "40 years of accumulation" can sometimes fit onto two small tables. What we could also see was that even getting out of the car would be a waste of time. We moved on.

Sale #3 was described as "70 years" of stuff and Monica was anxious to see what was here. It was a garage sale run by one of the guys who works at a tag sale company we know. We knew it was a garage sale before we arrived because the ad listed a rain date. Yes, there may have been things there that were 70 years old. No, there was nothing of interest to us. We were making good time but not finding very much. 

Sale #4 was run by a tag sale company that we like a lot and we hoped we would find something good here. The ad showed many great pieces of mid-century furniture (and they were) but not much else. This company rarely highlights the smaller things and we have had many days of finding great things of interest at their sales. Unfortunately, today would not be one of those days. A ten minute visit. Nothing from this house came back with us to the car.

Sale #5 was described as a multi-family garage sale having "80+ years" of stuff. We were now heading in the direction of home after not having all that much success. This did turn out to be a worthwhile stop. We found a record, an old astronaut Halloween customer and three sets of old salt and pepper shakers!

Just across the road from Sale #5, we stumbled upon an outdoor church sale. You never know if these will be good or not. Although there was not much for us, we did buy one record.

Our last sale of the day was described as "50 years of collecting". This was the second day of this sale and we chose to go here last, partially because it was the furthest away from our first stop and partially because it looked the least promising of all the sales on the list. We were still anxious to find out what "50 years of collecting" looked like. We still don't know. There was very little in the house and, judging by the way the rooms were cordoned off,  there probably wasn't much at any time. We bought one record. 

Here are some of the things we brought home today:

Some Christmas records

Some more records

An old circus banner, some decks of cards, squirrel salt and pepper shakers (marked Japan), an old package of multi-purpose garland and pineapple salt and pepper shakers

A Hawaiian barkcloth dress for Monica (made in Hawaii by Hukilau Fashions)

Halloween items...an old astronaut Halloween mask and some die-cut decorations

Packages of foil Christmas garland made in Japan. Until last week, we never found any of these. Now we have found them two weeks in a row!

Some Christmas items...an old Christmas tree skirt, a felt holiday mail bag (marked Japan) , a small stocking, an old package of ornament hangers and two sets of salt and pepper shakers (marked Japan)

We were home pretty early on Saturday since so many of the sales were quick stops and relaxed the remainder of the day. Sunday was another story. We spent the day doing laundry and errands, organizing the attic and "curb alerting" some old furniture that we no longer wanted. We had them in the garage in anticipation of having a garage sale this year which never happened. We put six pieces of furniture out front and advertised them on Craigslist in the free section. We kept an eye out as things were taken and updated the ad with each little change. Within three hours, they all had new homes and we removed the ad. 

The last task for the day was to start putting up our Halloween decorations. We usually like to wait until the first weekend in October but we are going on a mini-vacation next Saturday so we started early. By Tuesday evening, we were done.

Finding a place for the blow mold pumpkins and the die-cut decorations wasn't too bad.

Finding a way to display all of our old trick or treat bags was not too easy and so...

...we didn't...at least for now. They are strewn on shelves for the time being. We will figure out a better way next year.

 However, the cats get to roam freely atop the curtain rod.

The Pez dispensers and Halloween ducks even have a place!

September is almost gone and October is almost upon us. Halloween can be seen in the distance ahead but it can wait. Our mini-vacation begins on Saturday and we have looked forward to this for months. It is now less than a week away and this week can't go fast enough for us now. We're ready for it. Hand in hand together...we're ready. 


  1. Those people with 40 years of accumulation in two tables didnt shop ;) Halloween is my fave holiday, love all your goodies. Nice clocks too!

    1. They sure didn't, Liz!
      Thanks about the Halloween stuff! We love Halloween too! (Rob)

  2. Funny how a sale can advertise so many years of accumulation and there isn't much there...at least you still found some treasures.
    Your trick or treat bag collection is awesome! I have some, but your collection puts mine to shame! Seriously cool!

    1. Thanks, Laurie! You know as well as we do that you can only try to select the best sales based on pictures and descriptions. Unfortunately, the descriptions aren't always that accurate! Thanks about the trick or treat bags. It is a passion of ours and many of these bags were ours as kids. (Rob)

  3. The cats on the curtain rod! Love it!

    1. Thanks, Granny Annie! They seem to like it there! (Rob)