Why 'My Mink Betty'?

Why 'My Mink Betty'?
I'm not your common, everyday twenty-something year old and when I graduated from High School I got an equally uncommon gift. My parents found for me a beautiful 1940's mink stole at a garage sale. It had belonged to the woman's Great Aunt Betty who had married late in life to a man with money and had only allowed him to buy her this one luxury. The unusually styled stole has the name, Betty L. Jones, embroidered in the satin lining so that's what I call her. They never had children of their own and the mink was passed to Aunt Betty's niece and on to her daughter. Until it got to me, no one since Aunt Betty had worn it. Now Betty the mink and I go to the theater together on special occasions and I hope that someday I can take her to the Symphony or the Ballet. Although Betty hadn't been worn or loved for many years she was waiting for someone to love her again as are most other things I look for when thrifting.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Jim the Pyrex Man and the great Pyrex-palooza

Everyone has connections. Some people have a computer guy, some people have a car guy, when I was working at Disney World I had a free ice cream guy. Yesterday my mother and I met our Pyrex guy.

I was doing the requisite weekend searches for estate sales (on craigslist) and trying to pick one or two to hit up. A little bit frustrated with the lack of early postings close to my home, I decided to just search "Pyrex" as a keyword in all for sale.

It turned up a hit for a man listing lots of bottles, jars, pans, and TONS of Pyrex. He even had prices listed and they were GOOD. He didn't seem to know patterns but at least two things were pink. I just had to see his stuff!

I called the phone number he had provided but had to try a few hours later to get hold of him. When I got him on the phone he gave me the directions to his house and Mom and I were off - another trip over the river and through the big city (to Pyrex Jim's house we go).

When we got there he had his garage literally stacked floor to ceiling with boxes and boxes, mostly of canning jars. Right after we got there, he started to pull out the Pyrex (which he had stashed all over) and he had beautiful pieces. Most of them were patterns that I recognize because they're fairly usual but he had some pieces I had never seen before.

He told us that he goes to Estate Sales (only if they have pictures online so he knows what is there) and just buys all the Pyrex they have for about $1-$2 each and then sells it on craigslist for not much more.

Here are the things we bought from Pyrex Jim for a total of $24.00

1.5 QT White Daisy on Pink oval casserole, no lid.
2 QT Verde oval casserole, patterned lid.
1 QT Gooseberry Pink Bake-Serve-Store, clear lid.
1.5 QT Friendship (promotional?) divided serving dish, clear lid.
1.5 QT Promotional Yellow with Gold leaf Floral pattern, clear lid.
1.5 PT Delphite Blue glass with Gold Leaf Grapes Cinderella handled bowl.

The yellow oval casserole is a pattern not available at Pyrex Love and I'm dying to know what it's called. If someone can tell me, there may be a Pyrex themed prize in it for you!!

This lovely blue bowl, after some research, has been deemed a chip and dip bowl. Or half of a set anyway. What kills me about it is that Pyrex Jim told us that he'd had the 4 QT in that pattern and a woman had bought only the big bowl from him about two months ago. I don't get why she would have bought one without the other. And chip and dip sets aren't common, so I doubt that I'll ever find the big bowl for this one.

Pyrex Jim assured us that the red divided dish was just a primary color serving dish, but we were pretty sure it was the elusive friendship pattern, missing the decorative lid. Even without the lid we were very pleased to have it.

Pyrex Jim also said that if we just emailed him with a list of lid sizes we were missing (numbers and dimensions) he would hold them for us when he found them! We're also welcome back any time (as long as we call ahead) to check out his Pyrex finds.

After we left Pyrex Jim's we debated about stopping at a Goodwill that we don't often get to. We had gotten a pretty good Pyrex fix and were thinking that Goodwill prices were never going to seem good enough again. But we stopped anyway and look what we found.

My pattern - Spring Blossom!
4 QT Spring Blossom Cinderella bowl
Spring Blossom loaf pan
2.5 QT Friendship oval casserole, clear patterned lid. (there's some wear on the lid but it's the first piece of friendship pattern I've ever seen at goodwill!)

The large Spring Blossom bowl, by some act of God, was only $1.99 (usual Goodwill price would be $6.99) while the loaf pan was $3.99 (but obviously we paid that anyway). My mother was especially happy to find a piece of Friendship pattern with it's matching lid. The lid even fits on the Friendship divided dish that we bought from Pyrex Jim! (Well, it slides a bit - apparently the divided dish is just a bit different in shape, but almost a perfect fit.) How awesome is that?

And to think that we almost didn't stop!

Today, after getting all that Pyrex yesterday, I wasn't even looking for Pyrex when I went out to estate sales. I was finding great sales but not much that I couldn't live without. And then, at the third sale of the day, I saw them. They were just beckoning to me from the table in amongst the Tupperware.

The sale I was at was a late starter at around noon and I pulled in at 12:02. I got out of the car and as I walked toward the sale I headed for Tupperware (always looking for deviled egg plate inserts). There on the edge of the table was the Pyrex.

Daisy pattern: Lasagna pan, brownie pan, loaf pan, 1.5 QT oval, and a small round patterned lid (the matching bake-serve-store in the photo I actually got at Goodwill on Wednesday)
Spring Blossom pattern: 1.5 QT oval casserole with patterned lid.
Verde pattern: 2 QT round casserole (lid borrowed for photo purposes).
(the Butterfly Gold fridgie I got at a later sale for 10 cents!)

I immediately just grabbed all the Pyrex in sight and set it on a table in the garage (next to a large assortment of Pyrex mugs in Butterfly Gold and Autumn Harvest) while I called my mother on the phone to make sure she wanted it. Eventually, after she didn't answer for about ten minutes, I just bought them all anyway. Most of the items were $1-$2.

Do you ever have those times when you just can't stop finding the best stuff? And of course you're afraid that if you stop looking, you'll miss the most amazing thing of all? I'm still out there searching for a lid to the margarine tub. What is it that you've been looking for forever that you feel you're bound to find some day?

Don't forget!! If you can find out the name or more information (year, etc) on the yellow oval casserole with the gold leaf floral design on it, there might be a special Pyrex prize in it for you!! If you want another picture of that dish alone just ask and I'll take one!

I am thinking this post to:

The Garage Salen Party @ Debbiedoos
Thrifty Tuesdays @ Coastal Charm

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Yard Sale Finds

Yesterday I went out in search of estate sales and stumbled upon a great yard sale. She didn't have a lot of stuff but the woman had almost everything priced at 25 cents. My brother is expecting a baby any day now so wherever we go we look for baby things.

We found a five pack of brand new onesies for $3.00, assorted pants for 50 cents and hats for 25 cents. I don't know the prices of baby things but when we gave them to my brother he told us that pants cost $6.00 a pair.

And this was the find of the day.

Photo courtesy of Amazon.com

No, we didn't buy the baby. Sorry to disappoint. That is the Fisher Price Zen Infant Seat. The one we found was in nearly new condition, only used at Grandma's house a handful of times. The list price is $99.99 but you can get it at Amazon today for about $62.00. We paid $12.00.

I'm linking this post to:

Debbie-Doos Garage Salen Party @ Debbie-Doos

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Yaaay Thriftstores!!!

If you know me personally, you'll know that I love a good velvet painting. It's a secret dream of mine to own a velvet Elvis or other socially acceptable velvet painting. I once had the chance to have a paint-your-own velvet peacock at a friend's garage sale and now wish I'd bought it. I don't see velvet paintings often and when I do, they're usually the ubiquitous southwestern sunset or waterfall. Last Monday, I saw two velvet paintings, TWO...

My family lives just outside of a large metropolitan city where my Father works. Last Monday my mother woke me up early by knocking on my bedroom door:

Mom: (knocking)
Me: What?
Mom: Get dressed. We have to go to Dad's work.
Me: Why?
Mom: He left his phone at home.
Me: Smooth, Dad. Why do I have to go?
Mom: You don't. But since I'm going into the city, I figured I'd hit a few thrift stores...
Me: I'll be ready in ten.

Before going to see my Dad we had to stop at the Salvation Army. Locally, the Salvation Army is having a 50% off sale every Monday till September. Their everyday prices are so high, we only go when it's 50% off. While there, we found some good things; a few blue glass jars, a nesting shelf set, and some others. We also saw some really great things that we couldn't buy.

Like this Ironrite presser. I think it would be just the cutest thing in someone's laundry room. Ignore ugly sink.

They were asking $100 for it, or $50 at half price. This last Monday it was still there. I hope someone finds it and takes it home soon.

After the Salvation Army, we drove across the bridge to my Dad's work, delivered his phone to him, and set off for an adventure in the city! We turned on the trusty GPS, found a thrift store we'd never been to, and set off. As it was lunchtime, We kept ours eyes out for someplace to eat.
Soon, we saw this.

The name, "Ole Frijole" loosely translates to "Yaaay Beans!". (Not to be confused with the "Yaaay Beer!" sign at our corner Gas 'N' Git) We drive by it fairly often when in the city, and it always makes us laugh, but we have never eaten there.

It was wonderful. It's a little bit ghetto looking outside but it had delicious Mexican food at decent prices and we ate on real plates. From now on, when we say "Yaaay Beans!" we'll mean it.

The new thrift store was quite small, was run by two very fun older ladies, and had great prices. We got a Tupperware Hamburger Press, a salad tossing fork that matches my silverware set, a few pretty pink plastic hangers, a Lilo and Stitch toy, some very pretty vintage linens, and five large Laura Ashley curtain panels. The curtain panels are going to be turned into liners for our two wire shopping carts.

After that store, we drove around and found a very cute "antiques" store (mostly mid-century stuff) and had a lot of fun browsing. They had everything you could expect:

Webbed lawn chairs

swag lamps (sorry for the terrible pictures)

Loud couches,

And, of course, lots of Pyrex! Bake-Serve-Store dishes, butter dishes, margarine tubs, divided dishes and more.

In many different patterns; verde, spring blossom, square flowers, and butterfly gold, etc.

Some had their cradles! There was even Fire King.

They had so much beautiful Pyrex I just wished I could take some home with me. The best piece of all was this:

The spring blossom clear juice carafe! It was just oh-so pretty. Spring Blossom is MY pattern. At $16, I couldn't afford it, but a girl can wish, can't she?

The store also had lots of other nice and fun things:

This cute picnic basket

A beautiful Society china service for ten in the Larchwood pattern.

My mother's favorite thing was this lovely arts and crafts style rocking chair. She's always wanted one like it. This one is made of beautiful red-blonde oak and is in wonderful condition. My mother just wanted to stand there and stare at it forever, I had to peel her away from it slowly.

We bought several vintage postcards, mostly from one young woman's trip to Europe, but also one of a hotel pool in Hawaii, from a woman who commented that it was 80' and too hot; they needed some rain. I thought when you left the Pacific Northwest and went to Hawaii it was to get AWAY from the rain.

We saw tons of other great things in that store and had lots of fun. After that store, we made our way to an Antique mall, one we hear a lot about, and saw some fun stuff including some gorgeous quilts,

A whole spoon rack full of handkerchiefs! Who doesn't want one of these?! I didn't even know I wanted one before seeing this.

I didn't even know they had made a gooseberry fridge set let alone think I would ever see one!

And now for the velvet paintings. I saw one at each antique store; one very well painted and one not so much. First the bad:

Then the not so bad:

Disclaimer: The rating on this picture has been changed to PG-13.

I have never before seen a nude on velvet but according to my mother, the results are often much more like the painting of the tiger.

We had a great adventure filled with lots of "OOOH, look at that!" and "Really? You like that?" and "Mom... turn around very slowly and tell me if you see what I'm looking at". We came home with some great stuff from the first two places and lots of pictures from everywhere else. I hope my Dad forgets his phone at home again soon.

I'm linking this post to:

Thrifty Tuesdays @ Coastal Charm

Friday, August 13, 2010

The Versatile Blogger Award

Today I received my first blogging award, The Versatile Blogger Award, from Cecily at Craftopotamus! Thank you so much, I love your blog and you are just so sweet!

Now, with this award, come some rules:

1. Thank and link back to the person who gave you the award.
2. Share 7 things about yourself
3. Pass the award to 15 blogs you enjoy and let them know they've been given the award.

7 things about myself!

1. I spent all last night watching the meteor shower.
2. My favorite food is Macaroni and Cheese.
3. I like baking, especially pies.
4. After a whole semester of weight lifting in High School I could bench a whopping 76 pounds.
5. I cried when they canceled Mary Engelbreit's Home Companion.
6. My favorite movie is Stand By Me.
7. When I was little, I wanted to grow up to be Barbie. She got to change her occupation at whim and look fabulous doing it.

A few of my favorite blogs:
1. Laurie @ Magpie Ethel
2. Vintage Hunter @ The Hunt For Vintage
3. Linda @ A La Carte
4. Kari @ Dharma Waits
5. Colleen @ Fresh Vintage
6. Marie @ Lemon Drop Vintage
7. Jenn @ Thriftshop Romantic
8. Erin @ Yard Sale Snoop
9. Michelle @ A Full Cottage
10. Debbie @ Debbiedoos
11. Linda @ Coastal Charm
12. Bounty Huntress
13. P. @ The Way I Sew It
14. Jeni @ In Color Order
15. Vonlipi @ Vonlipi's Favorites

Thank you again to Cecily for giving me the award!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

The Adventures of Scorpion Girl and Lizard Lady

Most Estate Sales do half price on Sunday when I'm usually at church so I don't often make it. You're not supposed to skip church for garage sales even if you went to another church's rummage sale the day before. That doesn't count. I know 'cause I looked it up.

We usually go Garage Sailing one day a weekend and this last weekend we went out Friday. We did really well so Mom didn't want to go out on Saturday. I couldn't resist checking Craigslist anyway. I found a listing for an Estate Sale advertising $5.00 a bag on Saturday. I immediately ran to my mother's room and threw open the door:

Me: MOM!
Mom: Whaaat? I'm asleep. (groggily)
Me: There's an Estate Sale for you.
Mom: I'm not up. I'm asleep.
Me: It's half price.
Mom: I don't care. I'm asleep. We went yesterday. I'm out of money.
Me: $5.00 a bag after 2:00. We can find $5.00 somewhere can't we?
Mom: Crap. Now I have to get up.

So we went out to this estate sale in the country (well... there were cows) and not only was it $5.00 a bag it was $10.00 a box and furniture was $1.00. They had tables and tables of glassware and pottery. I immediately grabbed the biggest box I could find and started filling it.

The owner of the estate had apparently been some kind of dealer and had left behind boxes of things that hadn't sold. I don't know that what we got was terribly valuable but it was certainly fun to fill the box and worth $10.00.

This is the entire contents of the box. My mad packing skills came in very handy for this. I don't even know how I got it all in there.

These are the things I find most fun:

Blue spice canisters, a box of Wahoo Bark, and a bottle of Sozodont. Sozodont was an early oral hygiene product. It was invented in 1859 and was popular before dentists started to realize that it was too alkaline and was actually destroying teeth.

This little lady is a bookend made by Ucagco in Japan. I know nothing else about her except that she is adorable.

The plate and the pink coaster are for our little corner of Hawaii. Which will soon be guarded by Scorpion Girl and Lizard Lady! Look for their new movie coming in Spring 2011: "The Adventures of Scorpion Girl and Lizard Lady in the Country! (Well... there were cows.)"

Pretty pink and aqua Melmac dinnerware and a Fostoria brand plastic gravy boat. Not the same company as the glass works as far as I know.

This little West Bend canister is similar to a four piece set that I couldn't afford a few days ago. I love how cute and pink it is and the tea canisters are always my favorites; they're just the right size.

We aren't sure what the dish with the grapes is but we like it. The funky looking brown planter is probably the ugliest piece of McCoy ever made, but it IS McCoy.

Here's the pretty glassware. The teacup and the plate underneath it are a lovely daffodil yellow. That shade is hard to find.

We just couldn't turn down furniture for $1.00. We bought a dining table and two coffee tables.
All of them are in Mid-Century Modern style.

The dining table has a formica top, cool wrought iron legs and gold tone accents. My mother says her parents had one similar to it when she was growing up. It's probably in the laundry room at Gramma's today.

Note to self: Snoop in Gramma's laundry room.

Aren't the lines in this table just great? We love it. The other was different but disappeared to my brother's house before I could take a picture.

While we were waiting for my father to come for the furniture, the people running the sale kept trying to give us things as it was all going to Goodwill anyway. We also came home with a big box of kitchen utensils, knives, and a knife block for my brother and these:

Can you hear the angelic choir? It's the Brave Little Toaster (chrome and bakelite) AND an orange vinyl ice bucket! We still haven't tested the toaster but I don't care. Yes, I DO like the most random things.

As we were driving home from the sale I noticed that my mother was unusually quiet.

Me: So are you glad you got out of bed for this?
Mom: nothing
Me: Mom? Mom?
Mom: I'm asleep.


I'm linking this post to:

Nifty Thrifty Tuesdays @ Coastal Charms
Thrifty Treasures @ Southern Hospitality
Garage Salen Party @ Debbiedoos

Sunday, August 8, 2010

The Pyrex Collective

I recently joined a collaborative blog about Pyrex. I made my first post today.

The other posters have some lovely items and it's very fun to see and hear about them.

Come join the fun here.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

C is for Curious Bird

I am joining ABC Wednesday

This little blue parakeet showed up in our yard today. We don't know where he's from or who he belongs to but he seems to be pretty content eating our grass seeds.

(I am aware that this post may be more appropriate for "J is for Junk" week but we haven't gotten there yet.)

I'm linking this post to:
ABC Wednesday

Miss Mustard Seed is having a giveaway!

MissMustardSeed is giving away a goody box full of fun things!

Her only request is that you don't enter unless you absolutely love the things she's giving away. (Who wouldn't?)

Go take a look and good luck. Don't forget to say who sent you.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Estate Sale Friday

Last Friday, my mother and I went to two estate sales in our area and got quite a haul.

The first sale was hosted by the same family with the Bag of Used Soap from the week before, but they had more things out. We did quite well there, finding a few kitchen wares, some fun things, and lots of books and craft magazines (which we got for essentially free).

The Home Improvement books and Craft Magazines are a hoot and have the best pictures! The Kitchens and Bathrooms are the most fun; they come in the best colors.

There's Vixen the Reindeer Apron again! And isn't the tablecloth envelope just so cool? It's made so that you can fold up your fancy tableclothes in it when you put them away and they won't get all damaged.
The Troll Doll is a Dam troll from 1988 with his original tags on him. He's wearing a uniform with a shirt from Cellwood Machinery.

The second sale was the estate of an Army Officer and his wife who was an Army Nurse during WWII. In one of the rooms they had this charming portrait of the couple; too bad it was damaged.
Their house was wonderfully decorated with lots of things from the Philipines and Japan (she was in Japan in the war) and was quite fun to look through. They also had some kind of weird things like this "chewbacca scale" which I suppose was intended to keep your feet warm on cold mornings.
We found a few things we could use including a Gemco pump action Ketchup and Mustard set (more picnic ware) for $1.00 and a Butterfly Gold Pyrex Lasagna Pan for $3.00.

I even found a rhinestone necklace finally. I always see the prettiest rhinestone necklaces at estate sales but my neck is too big for them usually. This one fits just right and was only $6.00. I love it and will wear it the next time I take Betty (the mink) out for a night on the town.

We usually go to estate sales on Sundays when everything is half price and so when we went to this one on Friday we were pleased to see things priced as we would want them to be. We also usually miss out on the good things like jewelry and apparently bags of soap.

Maybe they're more common than we thought.

We didn't buy too many things last Friday but at the second sale we bought things that we can actually guarantee will get used.

What's your favorite thing to look for at estate sales? I always look in Kitchens first for Pyrex and other Kitchenware.

Please visit these parties to which I am linking this post:

Thrifty Thursday @ Tales from Bloggeritaville
Garage Salen Party @ debbiedoos
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