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.

Monday, February 28, 2011

Pink and Yellow (and Green and Blue)

It's Mary Engelbreit Monday at Cherry Chick's blog, so it's time to show you my recent ME finds. I just love the $1.00 ME items at Michaels.

Yellow cherry socks.

Pink flowered socks.
Some for me and some for my niece.

And if $1 isn't thrifty enough, I can use my 40% off one item coupon that comes in my weekly email from Michaels.com.

Speaking of $1,

I found this well-loved blue Pyrex primary 401 bowl at an estate sale. Now I just need the 402 red bowl to complete my set.

I also found this pretty blue divided server,
with a not-quite-matching clear 2 Qt casserole lid for $2.00. I think the pattern is Blue Horizon, but since it didn't have the patterned lid, I'm not sure. The actual color is more of a cadet blue than the blue in the picture.

Some day I hope to have a pink and yellow kitchen of my own, so I am always on the lookout for pink or yellow kitchenware.

14 inch Boonton melamine platter - $1.50.
Isn't that a cool shape?

Pearlized white and yellow Tupperware cold cuts keeper with 2 deviled egg trays inside - $2.25.
I already had one of these, but not in this dreamy color. I can't wait for picnic weather.

And my Mom found these cute little juice glasses for $4.00.

I couldn't get a picture that didn't distort the lines; they really are straight.

This green cake plate was $3.00. It's not vintage, but I really like the color.

These last three are for my mother.

She didn't need any more depression glassware, but she has a soft spot for grill plates, and these were only $5.00 for all three. The pattern is called Florentine No. 2, made by Hazel Atlas between 1932 and 1935.

The weather has been really cold here lately,
so I'd like to leave you with this sentiment.

I'm linking up to the following parties:
Mary Engelbreit Monday
Thrift Share Monday

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Saturday, February 26, 2011

February is for Calendars... and Rednecks

I enjoy finding things at estate sales and thrift stores so much that I sometimes forget that there are deals to be found at retail establishments, too. When Cherry Chick blogged about finding a Mary Engelbreit calendar, I was reminded that February is the month to find calendars on clearance. So my wonderful friend Annabella and I stopped at the local Borders, and she bought each of us one of these fun calendars.

Regular price - $12.95. Sale price $1.00!

Annabella's favorite photo.

My favorite photo.

Later, at the local grocery store, I found Valentine's Day items at 75% off, and stocked up on tissue paper.

$0.69/pkg. I bet I can pick up some pastel colors after Easter, too.

Then I stopped back in at the book store and found this page a day desk calendar.

Regular price - $13.95. Sale price $1.00!

Jeff Foxworthy says that he gets most of his ideas from regular folks who come up to him at his concerts and tell him their stories. So most people can usually find themselves or someone they know in at least one of his "Redneck" examples.

But I didn't expect it to be on page one.

And this one:

He says this like I should be ashamed of it.

I started flipping through the calendar and reading the pages out loud.

Then a funny thing happened.
From the other room, I could hear someone commenting softly to himself.

Dad: I fixed that toilet this morning.

Dad: You mean the one I have on my key chain?

Dad: It's not various, it's primer yellow.

Dad: It was Nascar. And it was my brother.

Dad: You weren't born yet, but yeah... got some cool stuff.

Dad: Not the liquor store, U-Pull-It (auto wrecking yard).
(Our house is a block away)

Then my Mom joined in....

Mom: It was my brother Johnny.
Dad: Johnny destroyed a kitchen going after a rat?
Mom: No, I destroyed Uncle Johnny going after a rat.
That is, I hit him with the broom instead of the rat.
Slipped. Banged his head. Close enough.

Dad: Not the church, but the Sunday School building.

Mom: That would have been nice.

Me: But that Pocahontas towel was really pretty... and I was eight.

Well, not me, but my friend told me about the time his whole family was at Grandma's and they all decided to go to the movies, except Grandma. When they came home, she was in the hot tub naked, drinking a beer.

(I love the movie Hope Floats)

I plan on doing this from now on at any time possible.

That reminds me of a story... a friend and I once went to a yard sale officiated over by two women who were completely wasted. They had recently discovered Four LoKo and decided to have a yard sale to celebrate. When my friend and I arrived, they offered us some. "It tastes just like juice," they giggled. Being underage and not idiots, we politely declined. They continued offering. "You're not undercover cops are you? We won't tell your parents," they whispered, conspiratorially.
Finally, a teen-aged girl came out of the house and barked at one of them, "Mom, you are so stinking drunk! Quit offering them liquor. They obviously don't want any." They were actually quite funny and nice, and my friend got a nice pair of Doc Martens for $10. They told us we just missed a creepy guy who asked if they had any underpants for sale. I don't know if he was intending to try them on there.

Do you suppose you might be a Redneck if you serve liquor at your yard sale?

I'm linking to the following parties:
Roses of Inspiration
Debbiedoo's Newbie Party


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Thursday, February 24, 2011

Estate Sale Finds

After a recent dry spell, we had several estate sales in one weekend. Here are a few of my favorite things we found.

My mother found this book in amongst a bunch of others stuffed into a closet. I hadn't gotten there yet when she found it or I'd have probably spotted it first. It's a portion of a correspondence course on home appliance repair ca. 1970.

The book is full of diagrams and instructions featuring common brands of household appliances such as this one for servicing and repairing a Mixmaster. The diagram they use shows a Model 10. My mixer is a Model 12 and still similar enough to use their diagrams for servicing.

After finding that, my father decided to go online and order the complete course. The NRI (National Radio Institute) doesn't exist anymore but we were able to order the full course for about $15.00. Now he has service and repair instructions for vintage toasters, coffee pots, washing machines, blenders, mixers, etc.

I love children's books and fairy tales so bedtime story books are always a favorite for me. This is a vintage copy of Uncle Arthur's Bedtime Stories with the latest copyright of 1941. Arthur S. Maxwell was a spokesman for the Seventh Day Adventist Church in Britain, but in America he is well known for his volumes of Bedtime Stories and Bible Stories. His stories all teach a morality point related to scripture.

Interestingly enough, although there are a few drawings, most of his "illustrations" are photographs from recent events or copies of biblical paintings.

My mother loves vintage board games, especially with fun, bright graphics.

She found this one that she'd never even heard of. It's ca. 1970 and has the colors to show.

At one sale my mother found an entire shoebox full of stir-sticks. Vintage ones - we're guessing most are from the 1960s. They did their traveling mostly in Seattle and Tacoma Washington, with trips to Hawaii, Reno/Lake Tahoe, and Vegas. She knows I love barware so she felt compelled to bring them home.

These are some of my favorite ones for styling, color, etc.

My mother has always wanted a souvenir pillow cover. She loves the ones from Hawaii especially and never thought she'd be able to afford any. We refrain from purchasing many things on Ebay and the only time we've ever seen one at an estate sale it was far too expensive.

We found two of them at one sale and waited until half price day to buy them for $1.50 each, a little bit surprised that they didn't sell.

I love aluminum tumblers and am always looking for them. I found these for $0.50 each. Don't they look lovely with my pitcher?

Lots and lots of apothecary jars for storing lots and lots of things. We paid anywhere from nothing to $1.00 each for several, even more than are pictured.

This is the best deal we made all weekend: A Bogen 3001 Tripod for my camera! (Picture borrowed from ebay; ours is very similar) My mother has been looking for a tripod for months now and hasn't found a thrifted one that was any good (usually the legs won't lock properly). This tripod was only $12.00, but Mom wasn't sure it would work with our camera. The woman running the sale very generously told us that we could take it home for the day and try it out and, if it didn't work right with our camera, bring it back the next day.

We brought it home, it worked perfectly, and we did the research and found out that it's a very popular tripod, very high quality, made of aluminum and sells on Ebay for around $60.00. Needless to say, my mother is glad she didn't find a functioning plastic tripod sooner.

I hope you found as many wonderful sales as we did!

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