Good. Gracious.

So. It’s been a while. How’re you doing? Is that a new dress? Did you color your hair or has it always been blond? It’s just been so long since I’ve seen you!

But I have a valid excuse. We BOUGHT A HOUSE. This is remarkable, you see, because my husband and I aren’t really adults. We’re just PRETENDING to be adults because we had these kids and we’re afraid the authorities will take them away from us if they find out we’re actually two 16-year-olds in the body of 40-somethings. We moved to Fayetteville fully intending to rent for the foreseeable future, because we’re not adults, see, and therefore didn’t want the responsibility of a house. But the university here is suffering from a severe housing shortage, pushing rental prices out the roof and making it next to impossible for us to find something decent for a price we could afford. I mean, honestly, houses here aren’t going for TOO MUCH less than they would in Chicago. We lucked into the pretty old house by the park (sniff — still missing it a bit) but it was only a six-month lease and, in a shocking twist, it sold right out from underneath us. The owner had it on the market for nearly three years with no success but we move in and BAM! It sells! I had had a false sense of security about going to a month-to-month lease when our current lease was up, feeling like the odds were pretty low that it would sell…but apparently, we’re GOOD LUCK. So it kind of forced our hand and we ended up…buying a house. It still seems unreal to me. I want to write more about it but wanted to just post a quick catch-up post tonight (especially since it’s 10:36 pm and an air conditioning repairman is currently working on our non-functioning HVAC unit. THAT’S RIGHT. THE JOYS OF HOME OWNERSHIP HAVE ALREADY PRESENTED THEMSELVES.).

So, yeah, over about two weeks in May we moved all of our belongings for the second time in six months and it was every bit as fun as it sounds, let me tell you.

I have a bunch of photos to post — so many I think I’ll do two different posts — of a Saturday about three weeks ago — maybe four? — where it was like yard sale Nirvana for about six straight hours. It was heavenly. I haven’t had a Saturday like that since, mostly due to the fact that there’s been something to do almost every Saturday regarding the house. The one Saturday where I was free, I couldn’t drag my sorry butt out of bed. But it helps that I have a bunch of stuff in the new garage waiting to be cleaned up and priced, all due to this one weekend. At least 60% of the goods I owe to my friend Shara at Monkeybox (BTW: if you read Shara — and you should, if you don’t I don’t know why — update your link for her, if you haven’t already, as she has a new old URL). Let me ask you something: do you have a junking buddy who is selfless enough to alert you to an awesome sale, even when she knows new stuff is going to come out throughout the weekend? I’ll bet you don’t, because that kind of generosity is pretty rare. On Friday, I was feeling kind of sorry for myself, because I hadn’t gone to the sales that morning even though my Mom was in town, instead choosing to have her babysit while I ran to foof the booth. I was sitting in the drive through of McDonald’s waiting for a diet coke when I decided to check my e-mail — and found an e-mail from Shara, telling me to be sure to hit this sale. It just so happened that I was within a mile of the sale (really a miracle because Shara and I live some distance apart) and I literally PEELED out of the drive through to head that way. It was an amazing sale. You can read Shara’s account here  and here and I totally agree with her assertion that it was a one-of-a-kind sale…the woman who was running it had lost her Mom fifteen years ago but had to wait until her Dad passed before getting rid of her stuff — he didn’t want her to sell it. Her Mom had been a collector, to say the least (a lot of the stuff had old yard sale prices on it, so I could tell she shared my weekend passion) and almost all of the stuff was in great shape. The woman wasn’t looking to make a killing on anything; she seemed respectful of her mom’s stuff but kind of baffled by why she wanted to own so much of it. Shara had already told me the prices were really good so I just started making a pile right away.

Let’s start with the buttons. I bought a gigantic can of them for $5. They smelled kind of funky so I soaked them overnight in warm, soapy water. Hey, guess what you’re not supposed to do with buttons? That’s right, soak them in warm, soapy water. The next day I did a little research and discovered that the funky smell probably meant that a lot of them are Bakelite, which shouldn’t be soaked in water. I hope I didn’t ruin them. I bought them for crafting (button magnets, pins, and rings) but I don’t want to be gluing any of these that might be worth some money…I have to find someone who knows their buttons before I decide what to do with them.

The scale has already sold in the booth, and the amber apothecary glass is there right now.

Two huge jars…biscuit jars, maybe? One sold, the other is still in the booth.

Sweet little ostrich planter.

Cutest little stuffed pig.

Three cool little frames that I’ll spray paint and fill with something fun.

Mom and Pop Florida Souvenir coffee cups.

Three presidential plates. Probably shouldn’t have bought these — I don’t think they’ll sell. They’re the kind of thing the hipsters would have bought from me at the Vintage Bazaar in Chicago but I don’t think they’ll go over so well here.

Flashy green and gold planter.

Very cool creel-like purse with a “Made in Japan” label.

Two very cool hinged frames.

A word about the jewelry: there was a jewelry box out on the table, open, stuffed full of fun things. There were several other jewelry boxes behind the table, and the woman who was running the sale was showing another woman (I think it was her cousin) what was in there, because she had not gone through it yet. They were oohing and ahhing over things, and the cousin was picking out things every now and then that she wanted. I got the feeling that the woman was then going to go through it and whatever was left was going to be for sale. I was stalling all that I could for that moment but it appeared that it was going to be a while, so my greedy self had to be happy with what I walked away with, which was some great stuff, BUT. There was a pair of earrings in the jewelry box behind the table that were little guns in little holsters and THE GUNS CAME OUT OF THE HOLSTERS and everything. So adorable, and this is coming from a person who is not particularly (okay, not at all) enamored of the NRA. When Shara went back the next day, it sounds like all the jewelry was out…I hope the person who got my gun earrings appreciates what they got.

Two cute charm bracelets.

Funky necklace and bracelet set.

These earrings are so kitschy and 60s-cool…another thing that I would have no problem selling at the Vintage Bazaar but might not be as in-demand here.

I got a few other bits and pieces of jewelry but didn’t photograph them.

The lady told Shara that there’s going to be a part two to the sale in the near future…she still has furniture to unload. That will be a good weekend, when she puts her sign out again. Of course, I will let Shara have first pick, because that’s only right!

Okay, back soon with house news and a few other finds I got that same weekend. If I owe you an e-mail, please accept my apologies — I am working at catching up.

Linking up with the always fabulous Apron Thrift Girl ThriftShare. 

June 12, 2013 - 9:23 am

Sarah That smell is actually the smell of buttons dying, or going bad. And the off gassing will cause the other buttons to die too. I hate to be the bearer of bad news but you really should throw any buttons that smell bad like that. They will eventually just fall into a million pieces.

June 12, 2013 - 10:20 am

Lara Jo Hey, Sarah! I read that too when I did my research (after doing the things I wasn’t supposed to, of course. :-). I also read that I wasn’t supposed to be storing my buttons in stored containers because it allows the build-up of gas. So when I sorted them I put any “smelly” buttons in a separate container so they wouldn’t contaminate the others. I also took the lids off of all of my ball jars that I was keeping my buttons in. With this button info and the info about the down throw (which I washed, by the way, and it seemed to come through just fine), I’m beginning to think I should just save time researching on the Internet and go straight to you! Thanks for the help!

June 13, 2013 - 1:24 pm

Into Vintage Wheee! Congrats on your new home — are there lots of fun projects waiting for you? (HVAC does not qualify). BTW, I think there are many of us pretending. I know I am.

Lovely that you are experiencing yard sale nirvana because I seem to be experiencing the exact opposite although I don’t know what the word for that would be. Disappointing will do for now. Hoping it picks up, uh, tomorrow?

Congrats again!! Hope you’ll be sharing photos of your new place.

June 14, 2013 - 8:39 pm

Shara Testing…. I keep leaving comments but they never stick.

June 23, 2013 - 7:54 pm

Tina-Marie Hamilton Hey,
I just got back from the Outer Banks and got caught up on the blogs. LOVE those last two pairs of earrings. Send me an email if you want to sell them. 🙂

June 23, 2013 - 7:55 pm

Tina-Marie Hamilton Hey,
I just got home from the beach and got caught up on your blog. LOVE those last two pairs of earrings. Shoot me an email if you want to sell them. 🙂

June 25, 2013 - 5:42 pm

Lara Jo The BEACH! Don’t make me jealous. Am sending you an e-mail about the earrings!