Adventures in Candle Land

Posted by Meghan in Junk In My Trunk, Sale Tales | 9 Comments

I had hit some sales on Memorial Weekend, which usually feels like a bust and not many sales with folks going out of town and holding BBQ’s. I had meant to do a quicky post, but instead will share this photo.


I did have a pretty wacky Saturday last weekend. It was the Whittier Heights Neighborhood yard sale.

Whittier Heights sale sign

I have done this sale a few times alone and it’s great in the fact that you don’t need a map or your smart phone. There are enough signs that you can just meander around and find sales.

I felt badly that I purchased something here and she didn’t have any change and then I forgot to go back and pick up the item when I did have change – I remembered the next day. Rats.

Screen and table

I hit a few sales, I think I purchased a book and some work clothing, nothing all that exciting.

Paintball package

I didn’t buy these paintings, but I liked them.

Guitar art

I met this dog at another sale. He was carrying around his own leash and acting like he owed the place.

Doggie at sale

Then I hit this sale filled with dolls and sewing stuff.


I was happy to get some really nice 1930s sewing patterns. I also picked some vintage quilting fabric from the 40s.

$4 portrait

I stopped by the Ballard High Glee club sale (or maybe it was the Drama club) and that turned out to be a bust.

School rummage sale

I am going to go out on a limb here and say that most sales run at schools that kids put on are pretty bad. I don’t need your worn out pants from last year … especially if you haven’t grown out of size 2.

Here is where things start to get a bit more wacky. I stopped at a sale that said entire contents, but it wasn’t listed as an estate sale, but it became clear pretty quickly that it was a full on woman that had passed away. She also hadn’t tossed anything away since 1974. It wasn’t hoarding exactly, but the house was very packed.

Indoor sale

I wasn’t really finding anything … until I found around $85 in a box. This has never happened to me before! The two ladies running the sale seemed very flustered when I gave them the money back.

As I was leaving some guy mentioned that I need to check out “Candle Land.” I’m not sure what that is, but it sounds scary …

This is the first thing that I saw: the Cool-Dana.


Yes, it’s the cool you down bandana. I have no idea when this is from, but “Wow … That’s Cool.”

Right next to that was this Sardine puzzle.

Something fishy

And then the joke that never gets old in my house -– the Norwegian joke!

Caution Norwegian Crossing

You don’t have those in your house? Well, this is Ballard, the home to so many folks from Sweden, Scandinavia and Norway.

And then this — the Dog-O-Matic!


Let me just say that I hadn’t even made it into the basement yet! There were old cosmetics, novelty items, kitchen items, tools. Vintage Geritol from 1971! You get the idea. I snagged a 1960s hammock.

I did not snag this amazing cat toy, but I did remember it from the 1970s.

Kitty toys

Here is what some of “Candle Land” looked like.

Cram-packed garage

Bags and boxes

I found a stack of stuff of storage bins that hadn’t been touched with some great vintage clothing. But sadly, when I found the boxes of shoes they all had dry rot.

Crusty shoes

I did purchase this amazing catalog. I see a book report in my future …

Shopping international

I found one room that was filled with boxes, but no light. And it was sketchy. The whole basement was open, but I pulled a few things out and I just couldn’t deal. NO LIGHT = scary in a crazy basement sale.

I didn’t buy a ton of stuff here, but she had so much that was bordering on time capsule material that it was really great.

Junk In My Trunk 6-1-13

The janky adventures of Captain Cat

Posted by Jenny in Junk In My Trunk, Sale Tales | 7 Comments

This week’s post definitely suffered from a bit of “wait too long to blog and forget what even happened” syndrome. I just couldn’t get it together to actually write it all up for a while. I suspect this lack of motivation started after realizing this would be our seventh time blogging the annual Phinney neighborhood sale. That means we’ve been going to this sale for way longer than that. Do the people in this neighborhood even have anything left to sell at this point? Well, yes. Though that doesn’t mean it was necessarily good …

Box o' Birkenstocks



$5 Zone

Cats are children, only with fur

Tragic blue painting

Oh, it goes on and on. I am sort of amazed at how many pictures we took of random items that we didn’t want to purchase.

Phones for sale

Snowman trio

Condiment pack

Candle and scissor jars

DVD Bulk Rates


Caution Slow Moving Senior

Elf shoes

At least the price was right for these seeds!

Seeds should always be free

We laughed at the “old Apple technology” section of one sale. One item was labeled “Does not turn on but is still awesome.”

Does Not Turn On

And this label cracked us up. Flapdoodles!


We did find our way to this memorable garage, where there’s a small but pretty great selection of vintage items each year.

Vintage garage

Meghan dug through the clothes and other stuff, ending up with a small pile. Karl and I fanned out to the other sales nearby. One of them was a woman who brings out the same items every year, priced way too high to actually sell. I recognized a few things from previous years. Karl got a few things at another sale, and before we knew it the trunk was looking pretty good. We had to circle back to Meghan’s to switch cars (don’t even ask) so went ahead and took a halfway-through-the-day trunk shot.

Junk In My Trunk #1 5-18-13

On our way to get more cash we saw some very janky-looking spraypainted signs for a sale right on the main drag. As we got closer we discovered the sale was in a “bird control” business.

Garage Sale Here

The woman running the sale said they weren’t going out of business, just closing up their office and clearing stuff out.

Hard Hats

I couldn’t believe no one had snagged this amazingly freaky stuffed bird! Not that I wanted to own it …

Stuffed bird

Heading back over to Phinney, we hit a sale outside of a wacky toy/art shop. They had a pretty amazing bobblehead selection.

Bobblehead table

They also had some panties. Just sitting there, flapping in the breeze.


Just as we were about to leave I spotted this ginormous Rat Fink.

Giant Rat Fink

It’s about two feet tall, and has a coin slot and removable bottom so you can use it as a piggy bank. I sent a photo of my husband to see if he wanted it … and ended up bringing it home.

At another sale I became fascinated by this vintage blowdryer (but restrained myself from purchasing it).

Vintage hairdryer

It was here that Meghan purchased five or six vintage Home Ec textbooks, some of which are pretty amazing. Perhaps you’ll see them in a future Book Report post.

After a few unremarkable sales we came upon this one, where they had a lovely accordion!

Cactus painting and accordion

It was $300. While admiring it, the woman told us a joke. “What do you call a gentleman? A man who knows how to play the accordion, but doesn’t.”

She also had The Mothership, which she described as “an ashtray for your chainsmoking friends who also like Star Trek.”

The Mothership

And on top of all that, she had a talking Pee Wee doll! Well … more like a squeaking Pee Wee doll.

Next stop: a sale where if you were looking for decorative booze bottles, you were in luck.

Bookshelves & bottles

Glen Campbell was looking good.

Glen Campbell bottle

Then Meghan spotted the “adult section.” Books, bottles, nudie mags … they kind of had it all.

The sexy section

We were getting close to winding down when we saw this crazy baby sign. What?!


There was a whole strip of sales we hadn’t hit yet. One of them had a couple of these skulls–labeled “leather mask templates,” whatever that means.

Leather Mask Template

Meghan poked around while Karl and I hung out on the corner, where our attention drifted over to this horrifying pile of free boxes.

Toxic corner

This was someone’s accumulation of all manner of sprays, oils, and cleaning products, ranging from about the ’60s to the ’80s. We dubbed it the “Toxic Corner,” marveling that someone having the nerve to put these out on the street for free instead of taking them to the hazardous waste disposal. Eventually curiosity took over and I started to gingerly poke around in the boxes. And what did I find? Captain Cat!

Captain Cat

Amazing … and probably deadly.

Our second trunk shot is not as bountiful as the first, but not too bad!

Junk In My Trunk #2 5-18-13

Another year, another West Seattle Garage Sale Day

Posted by Meghan in Sale Tales | 7 Comments

Yard sale today

It was time again for the West Seattle Garage Sale Day (WSGSD). Sadly, Jenny couldn’t make it and no one would go with me – okay, I only asked a few people, but still. And with the stuff going on with my car not wanting to start whenever it felt like it, I took the van.

WSGSD is easy to get around, since there are around 280 sales, so you pretty much just drive around and you will find sales.

Sign on car

But after going for many years, this year felt like more baby clothing and kids tricycles. I just wasn’t feeling it at all. I had hit 19 sales before buying a single item.

I did see this amazing pencil.

Giant pencil

Just to give you an idea of size, the owner let me take a photo of her with the pencil. It was $50. Did I really need a $50 pencil? I guess not.

Posing with the pencil

And really, what is that? A huge metal chimney?

Still life with balloons

But they had these amazing paintings.

Two portraits

I also liked these. In fact I collect these, but $50 each is pretty steep for bottle cap people.

Bottle cap figures

I also have like 6 of them, so really I’d rather have the large pencil.

This sale was the one sale that I did really well at.

West Seattle yard sale

Right when I walked into the yard a woman was carting off a huge amount of jadeite dishes. The prices had been great and I found some records and a few vintage clothing items.

Then I spotted another great painting!

Nekkid lady painting

I also loved this book cover, but not really for my age group.

You call this a family?

And I guess I don’t think I need a guide to making yourself better. This version is from 1988, but it looks more 1983.

As I was wandering around I called my husband, sort of belly-aching about my crappy yard sale luck. He made some comment about another area having a sale and maybe I should go do that. So, it started to seem tempting, but I drove around more and started thinking about whether I should leave the 200+ sales for an area that could have nothing. Around 11:30 I decided to do just that and it was a massive bust. Lesson learned!

Designer clothes, cat mega-mansions, and Andy Gibb

Posted by Meghan in Junk In My Trunk, Sale Tales | 2 Comments

Jenny wasn’t going to go to sales at all this week and I was sort of trying to twist her arm a bit about just going for a couple of hours … I suspect she was committed to not going until she got an email from an old work friend that was having a sale in Magnolia. The main plan was to go there and just sort of come back to Ballard, but in the morning Jenny said there were a few early morning sales before her sale. Little did we know that we should have been at her friend’s sale extra early — she’d told Jenny it started at 9, but later I realized her ad even said “early birds are fine, if you help me unpack”.

We hit a couple of boring sales and to be 100% honest, I really don’t remember anything about them. Sorry.

A boring sale

Jenny’s friend’s sale turned out to be GREAT!

Designer clothes & art sale

FINALLY! It’s going to be a great weekend for a yard sale! If you’ve been to one of our sales, you know we only have quality stuff. We are foodies, art collectors, designer clothes lovers AND we are pairing up with my sister, father and other random folks to offer you a great place to come pick.

Jenny was smart enough to take some photos while I sort of took a full on dive into so much stuff that if I would have thought for half a second, I would probably have seen some reason to tone it down.

Tables of goodies

There was a woman that had hit the sale before us that had a huge pile, but there was tons of stuff that hadn’t even been opened. I don’t need to go into how much I purchased, but it was a whopping $170 by the time I was done and between that and the $30 or so Jenny spent, the trunk was pretty full.

Scarf and hat bins

Right next door was a Jr. Roller Derby fundraiser. When I asked it was for Seattle Derby Brats I was corrected that it was for junior banked track derby. Oh, roller derby –- how can a person even keep track of how much derby there is?!?!

Jr. Roller Derby Sale

They did have this sweet-ass rave jacket.

Blue rave jacket

EEEK! One of the sellers made a comment about handing out a free glow stick to whoever purchased it.

Jenny mentioned a book sale and it turned out to be at this large modern home.

Book sale

The second we walked in the door the guy having the sale was sort of yelling at his mom after some books had been knocked over. He was sort of being a dick, but caught himself and realized he was getting upset with his mom during a yard sale in what I can only guess is her house.

Wall books

Not sure why you would need a family planning and a menopause book, but whatever…

Book selection

We were about to head back to Ballard but then I saw a sign that I just felt the need to follow. And we found this.

Cat Paradise

Yeah. It really is the largest cat scratching post thing you have ever seen. It was $100 (down from the retail of $400) and even if I had a cat or two I would never want that thing in my house. When I mentioned it being huge the owner said, “Yeah, they were living large.”

Next we hit a large fundraising sale that was really, really huge.

Fundraising sale

It looked like something great could be found, but not on your life.

The clothing section

Camaro Parking Only

Stuff a-plenty

At this point my car started to act up the same last week (no worries, it’s in the shop as we speak). So what do we do? Keep going to sales and hope that it keeps starting? Well, yeah.

The next sale had a couple of boxes of records and Jenny was making some smart-ass remarks about the BeeGees. I had to stop and laugh about this Andy Gibb LP.

The lightning-thumbed Andy Gibb

To be honest I just remember him:

  1. Doing the song “Shadow Dancing”
  2. Dating Victoria Principal
  3. Doing too much coke and being broke and then dropping dead at 30.

I did find this great photo while doing a google search.

Andy Gibb - wow

At the next sale they had a few interesting items. This amazing (but musty and overpriced) sort of studded suit …

Snazzy outfit

… some really bad records …

Why Dontcha

… and a hookah!

Yard Sale Hookah

Then my car really didn’t want to start. We mostly laughed, since it was only five blocks to my house and we could walk if we had to. But then after five minutes it started right up. What the hell???

Our last sale turned out to be sock guy’s sale. He said he almost put that in his ad, so that we would know it was him.

Sock guy sale

No socks this time around, but I picked up a nice leather jacket and a pair of boots. And I left the car running the whole time!!!

Junk In My Trunk 5-4-13

Purell for the soul

Posted by Jenny in Junk In My Trunk, Sale Tales | 8 Comments

It was pretty nice out last Saturday, and there were tons of sales listed! Naturally our first stop had to be the neighborhood sale that I had steered Meghan towards last time, not realizing that it was happening THIS weekend. Sure enough, this time it was ON.

The first sale of the day

The first sale we hit looked really promising. I was dismayed to see a guy who’d already pulled out a huge stack of books. Did he snag all the good stuff?

Book stacker

I glanced at his pile and was kind of relieved to find nothing I wanted in there. I dug through the rest, and it seemed like there would be something, but yet … nothing tempted me. However, Meghan headed to the upper level and grabbed about six or seven hardcover design books for about a buck each. Nice! We kept meandering through the neighborhood.

Pottery garage sale

Let me state that it was freakishly windy. At this sale a clothes rack almost blew over and knocked me down. Things were flying off the tables!

Table at the neighborhood sale

After hitting everything in that neighborhood, we moved on to a few sales nearby. The ad for this one had seemed promising, mentioning vintage items. They definitely had a lot of stuff.

Boxes and misc

Smaller items were set out in bins that were a complete mix of items. Vintage sectioned plate? Kewpie doll? White plastic football? Red Skelton VHS tapes?

Bin of odd items

The next bin was even more baffling: a stack of 8-track tapes labeled “parts only.”

Parts Only

While I was pondering whether there was some market for 8-track parts that I had been unaware of, Meghan pointed out this wacky item that looked like a burlap sack with a fluffy cat’s tail poking out of it. “Smack it on the table!” the seller called to us. We did so … and decided it was video time.

Neither of us brought that home, but Meghan grabbed some vintage dinerware with a Shriner motif. (Hey, that rhymes! Shriner-diner!)

We had two choices of where to go next. A cluster of sales in another neighborhood, or two sales that were closer, but in the opposite direction. We decided to hit the two sales, making our first stop at what was billed as a 7-room estate sale.

Spinny-flower estate sale sign

They had a list of rules posted prominently at the door, with a kid selling treats nearby. (I purchased a donut-hole-on-a-stick for a quarter.)

Estate sale rules

Once inside, the first thing we saw was what Meghan referred to as the “Instant Bauer collection.” If you wanted to spend some money, that is.

Instant Bauer collection

There was a decent amount of stuff there. Some of it was kind of classy and antique-y …

Oval framed portrait

… and some of it was not.

Body Jam

We both felt like there might be some good clothes somewhere in the closet, but it was a bust.

Closet of crappy clothes

And this huge vintage poster was awesome, but $1100? Who’s going to walk into a sale and drop that?

Ginormous poster

The second sale on this street had a ton of new clothes, some with tags still on. Most of it was sportswear, or at least sporty.

Sporty sale

By this time the wind was really picking up. After Meghan asked the price of a jacket and it was $35, I decided to go wait in the car, thinking to myself that $35 is not an acceptable answer when asking the price of a jacket at a yard sale … only to have Meghan come over a few minutes later asking to borrow some cash. She was purchasing the jacket, which turned out to be some super high end thing I’d never heard of, and a pair of compression pants, which is also something I’ve never heard of but apparently they are really expensive.

Meghan was talking excitedly about her purchases as she got back into the car and tried to start it up … only to have it do nothing. Which had happened to us last time we were making the rounds! Apparently, her car doesn’t always feel like starting up, but only when we are going to yard sales; it had been fine all week. After several attempts and curse words, the car finally managed to start, and off we went. We spotted a sign for a sale in what we usually refer to as “No-Sidewalk-Land” (or occasionally just “scary”) but for some reason, we decided to go. Little did we realize that we were headed to a sale across from a cemetery. Yes, the cemetery that we accidentally drove into while hitting sales a couple years back. Let’s revisit that magic moment:

On the way to the next sale we had something happen that I can seriously tell you has never happened before: I accidentally drove into a cemetery. I know what you are thinking — “HOW???” This cemetery is very small and older, so there are no huge signs out front. It also has a small street that runs along one side, so when I whipped into the cemetery I thought I was on that street. Both of started cracking up at how absurd this was. I do some pretty crazy driving on occasion, but this took the cake.

This time we managed not to drive into the cemetery, but when we saw the actual sale … we were still frightened.

Scary sale across from cemetery

We decided we had to venture in, just for blogging purposes. But since it wasn’t really a place you’d want to be stuck if the car really crapped out, we did so while leaving the car running. Classy, right?

This sale … I’m not sure I can convey how strange it really was. We walked through a gate, alongside that tarp-covered trailer, between tables laid out with all manner of items that seemed to have spent several decades boxed up in a damp garage. There were cats lying around on the astroturf-like material that covered the walkway. I sort of felt like I didn’t want to touch anything and there was definitely a bit of meth-head vibe going on. Just when I was getting ready to turn around and leave, Meghan nudged me. “Did you see that leg?”

What? A leg? Yes, a prosthetic leg, propped up on a table. It looked like it had seen better days. Meghan asked about it and the woman said, “That’s my daughter’s old leg! She outgrew it.” The daughter, who was sitting behind a cashbox, nodded at us. The woman added that ten percent of all sales would be used to buy her new shoes.

We pretended to look around a bit more and I knew Meghan was going through the same thought process that I was: trying to figure out how to take a picture without it being too strange, but eventually accepting the fact that there was no way and regretfully giving up. On the way out I spotted some colored paper signs, cut in little starburst shapes and taped up to the trailer like little advertisements and notices. Again, I could not manage a picture, but the ones that I remember said: “Used Broken Computers — ASK!” “10% of all proceeds used for orthopedic shoes!” and finally “SMILE, YOU’RE ON CAMERA!!!”

We jumped into the still-running car and sped away from that insanity. Meghan made a comment about how she needed some Purell, and I was confused since I didn’t think she had touched anything there, either … until she clarified that what she wanted was Purell for her soul.

We spotted a sign for a “G Sale” — I always find this entertaining.

G Sale (with lone balloon)

When we got there, they’d boiled it down to one letter. NO MESSING AROUND.


We didn’t buy anything, and this being closer to home (AND NOT ACROSS FROM A FREAKIN’ CEMETERY) Meghan had actually turned her car off … when it again failed to start until six or seven tries in, we detoured back to Meghan’s house and switched to my car. Meghan is not a fan of reading while driving (and I’m not sure she could really decipher the handwriting on my scrawled list) so I let her drive. Our next stop Meghan immediately recognized as the house where, at a sale long ago, a kid had done card tricks for us.

Returning to the scene of the yard sale

Thanks to the magic of having blogged for so long, I can tell you that this was nearly five years ago (and that we’d been at yet another sale there before that).

Our next stop was a house where I’d been to a sale years before and picked up a working ’70s Technics turntable for $5. Unfortunately, there was nothing I wanted to buy this time around, but there was a grade-school boy who shouted, “Card tricks! Twenty-five cents!” I made Karl give him a quarter and he proceeded to do a very long trick in which he repeatedly asked, “Um … is this your card?” We felt bad that he seemed to be screwing it up, but it turned out to be an elaborate setup for a grand finale where the right card was revealed.

The kid was nowhere in sight (probably a surly teen by now) but Meghan mentioned this to the guy having the sale, who didn’t seem to remember the particular incident but said he knew who the kid must have been. Just as we were about to leave empty-handed, Meghan spotted this odd but sort of cool brown ceramic thing — like a square plank with a grid pattern. It was marked “Carmel Kiln Company” and the seller said he didn’t know what it was for, but his mother used to have it hanging on the wall. She decided to purchase it and by the time she got in the car I’d searched on my phone and discovered that it was for meant for baking bread on, the squares meant for measuring out rolls. Who knew?

We headed across town to a basement sale. This was in a building I’ve driven past many times, which is partially covered with an aquatic animal mural. I had never been inside, or planned to, but I guess it was my lucky day.

Basement sale entrance

The seller had thoughtfully provided entertainment by means of a TV that was playing West Side Story. She told us that some earlier shoppers had hung out watching it for a while.

Basement sale entertainment

I spotted this item, which I had never before imagined existed … the Mr. Potato Head Massager.

Mr. Potato Head Massager

Again, we left empty-handed. The day had started off so promising! Had the leg sale jinxed us? Or was it switching cars? Who knows, but we determinedly headed to the final sale on our list, another estate sale. The first thing I saw was an odd fake metal dog thing that plugged in … I couldn’t figure out what it actually did when you plugged it. There was a small area that might have been a light, but the people running the sale said they’d tried it and whatever it used to do, it didn’t do any more. Oh well. Meghan was laughing about this calendar, where the days and year had been altered in order to count down to the sale weekend.

Estate sale calendar

Then we spotted these great Halloween masks! We agreed that they were cool, but not ten-dollars-cool (just take-a-picture cool).

Awesome Halloween Masks

These guys were also take-a-picture-cool, or maybe that should just be take-a-picture-weird.

Googly eyed hairy doll things

I spotted the second oval-framed portrait of the day — this one wasn’t for sale.

Not 4 Sale

We meandered through the house and all of a sudden were led into a blue-shag-carpeted, metallic-wallpapered nook, complete with bunny cut-out — it felt a bit David Lynchian.

Odd corridor

On the other side of this was a bedroom which contained a selection of terrible clothes. We dubbed this “Grandma’s ’80s Closet.”

Grandma's '80s closet

Many of them still had tags, or were wrapped in plastic. (See? David Lynch! Okay, that’s a stretch.)


What is “Haband!”? Does that mean “Unwanted Sweater!” in some foreign language?

Finally, we entered … the doll room.

The room of dolls

I think that mirrored wall just adds to the insanity. Doll overload! Along with some stuffed animals and … hey, what’s this?

Mr. Flashmore Jr.

It looks like a little stuffed flasher guy, right? Dare I look and see what he’s packing under that trenchcoat? Um, you know it …

Inside Mr. Flashmore's Coat

While I appreciated how awesomely demented this thing is, even more so after reading the label and discovering his name is “Mr. Flashmore Jr.”, I decided against actually bringing him home.

In the end, it wasn’t the most bountiful day, but it wasn’t bad.

Junk In My Trunk 4-27-13

4/20 yard sales, dude

Posted by Meghan in Junk In My Trunk, Sale Tales | 8 Comments

Jenny and I had sort of hemmed and hawed about if we would even hit sales, since it’s been raining here. Yes, it’s been nice on a random Tuesday afternoon, but that doesn’t make a person want to drag out their belongings at 7:30 AM on a Saturday morning. In the end we thought about maybe hitting sales for a couple of hours and then knock off early.

In looking at the sales on Craigslist one jumped out right away – it’s 4/20 dudes!

Dear Seattle,
Three young men once moved into a lodge at the top of a hillock. A dog as well, Luke was the name. They loved mountains, water, and the open road. Time passed, and many things were acquired. Everything but the dog must go.
Two corner sectional couches, one 60’s vintage
Complete snowboard, bootz
Complete Double up wakeboard
Oak hutch
Vintage t shits and clothes
Dr. Suess looking house plants
Handmade wall hanging art…

I also spotted a listing posted Friday night for an all night long sale. Reason for sale: Eviction on Saturday at 7:30 a.m. Gulp!

I sent those to Jenny, more as a joke than anything else. Usually, I drive and Jenny puts together the list of sales. And that usually works out great, but this time, Jenny sent us to a 9-house block sale that wasn’t actually happening until next week. Jenny was telling me that she was sorry, and also that since that wasn’t happening it didn’t leave us very many sales. Oddly enough I had driven by a few signs on my way to the bank earlier, so we decided to check those out.

At our first sale, Jenny immediately pointed out this thing.

Creepy raccoon thing

WHAT IS IT? A bank? A cookie jar? Creepy nipple raccoon figure? Jenny knocked over a bunch of plastic margarita glasses in the process of us trying to figure it out.

Sidewalk sale

The rest of the sale was sort of meh. They did have this spiffy homemade lampshade.

Lamp shade art

The next sale was in an enormous garage and I thought it was going to be good – mostly based on the fact that I had been to another sale here about five years ago that was great. In the end I think I purchased a book for my husband.

Garage sale in massive garage

I do like the tack board/tool hanging board used for the sign.

Pegboard sale sign

The next sale Jenny kept calling the “TJ’s sale” and of course all I could think is “Trader Joe’s is having a sale?” Instead it was a sale for an outdoorsy couple taking off cruising in our boat and needing to sell all of their stuff.

Moving-to-a-boat sale

She had this cool shoe box from 1892.

Ladies Shoe box

I purchased that, and also a newer -40 REI sleeping bag. I looked it up later and found that it retailed for $230. It’s at the dry cleaners as we speak.

While on the way to another sale, and really starting to wind-down already, we saw this sale.

Sale by the side of the road

OK, is it even a sale? Not sure. No sign and it looks more like 3 dudes standing around chatting, in fact we never even got out of the car. I mostly just squealed at Jenny to get a photo of the back of the truck!

Back of truck

Right? Maybe you can’t see the 3 ammo bags sitting on the truck bed, but I think you get the idea.

When we pulled around the corner to hit the next sale on the list, I realized that I had hit this sale on my way home from work on Friday and it was horrible. I had forgotten to tell Jenny about it until that point.

Garage sale in alley

Is this day really going to suck this badly? We debated just going home. Then we spotted a “4/20 Gypsy Moving Sale” sign for a sale on Cleopatra, a street that is only 3 blocks long.

4/20 Gypsy Moving Sale

The sale was large, but sort of over priced — a woman quoted me some crazy stuff about a pair of Paige jeans going for over $200 new. Is your sale Nordstrom? No, it’s not.

In honor of it being Record Store Day, they had records – anyone want to do the Macarena? It was in there.

Old School Stuff

Continuing with the Record Store Day theme: this t-shirt.

Ask Me About My Seven Inches

We also saw this entire library of Ayn Rand books! EEEK!

Ayn Rand yard sale

Jenny picked up a sweater and the box set of The Wire and I bought a Fast Times at Ridgemont High t-shirt. At that point we decided to just get breakfast and call it a day.

Junk In My Trunk 4-20-13

Moo-rabilia and moo-ch more

Posted by Jenny in Junk In My Trunk, Sale Tales | 6 Comments

Meghan and I had gone back and forth a bit about whether we’d try and hit sales last weekend. There wasn’t much listed, but when we found out that local restaurant Mae’s was closing down and having a sale, we thought we’d have to check it out. Neither of us were in the market for cow-themed kitsch, but we figured there might be other good stuff and at the very least it would be blog-worthy. It didn’t start until 10 a.m., so I put together a sparse list of other sales and we headed out around 9.

On the way to our first sale Meghan wistfully recalled a sale we’d hit years ago (well before starting this blog in 2007) where she’d purchased some incredible jewelry for dirt cheap. Different place, but same block. This time the street was covered with cherry blossoms. It looked like a pink snowstorm had hit it.

Sale sign with cherry blossoms

It definitely added a picturesque element to the sale.

Sale with cherry blossoms

Each of us picked up a book or two and I bought little ceramic animal figurines and a cool pitcher. Meghan had to wait for me to finish taking some art shots of the street.

Cherry blossom art shot

Next we headed to sale that was scarily close to last week’s perma-estate-sale, but was at a different address. However, it wasn’t happening. We knew we were at the right address because we saw Furniture Guy standing outside, forlornly scratching his head. I considered rolling down the window and screaming that we were off to buy ALL THE FURNITURE, but my better judgement won out.

We headed off to a moving sale.

Yard sale upstairs

When we walked up the stairs and opened the front door, we found ourselves face to face with this.

Face on the wall

Why? I mean … why? We were mystified (but very entertained).

The sale was in the living room and Meghan picked up some really great books. I poked around a bit but didn’t find anything.

Inside the moving sale

We had a little time to kill before heading to Mae’s, so when we spotted a sign for a sale nearby we went over to it. Once we were there I realized it was a sale that I had purposely left off my list because it seemed to focus on hot wheels and toys. Doh! We left quick and went over to Mae’s.

Mae's Garage Sale

We still had about ten minutes so we passed the time taking pictures and laughing at the sign. 100s – no, 1000s of items!


We had no doubt this was true, judging from just what we could see in the windows.

Cow mugs

While waiting, Meghan also showed me a picture she’d taken of Mae’s proprietor in her Halloween costume — aside from the restaurant, she is the hilarious host of a Senior Center bingo night that we hit on a regular basis. Can you tell what her costume is?

One Night Stand

Well, of course — she’s a one night stand. How awesome is that?

The doors opened and we started to look around. Things were spread over all the tables in all the rooms.

A bit of the stuff

There was a little of this, a little of that …

Rosie O'Donnell Barbie

Moo-shoe pork

Broken globe and cutlery art

… and a LOT of salt and pepper shakers.

Salt and pepper galore

Bear-Ass S&P

There were also dogs playing poker.

Dogs playing poker

And more dogs playing poker.

Poker faces

And some dogs playing pool.

Dogs playing pool

Not to mention a bunch of poodles.

Poodles on the wall

It took us a while to get through some of the rooms. This one with the giant mouth had a ton of stuff in it.

Inside the mouth

And then we got to the cow room.

The cow room

Everything in there was cows. Even the mural across one whole wall.

Cow mural detail

I’m pleased to report that we left all the cows behind.

A large cow

I did, however, succumb to the lure of a $2 Last paint-by-number Last Supper and a plastic two-headed dragon. Meghan purchased what she refers to as a “glasses dog” — a ceramic doggie head to rest your glasses on! (Definitely one of the most genius inventions of all time.)

And then we had one more stop: an estate sale. It had already been going for a day, but what the hell — beggars can’t be choosers when hitting sales in April.

Estate sale sign

Light-up Christmas decorations greeted us as we walked in.

Light-up nativity figures

This sale had been described as “girly” and they even offered a discount if you came wearing a tiara. Neither Meghan nor I took them up on this.

Marilyn bottles

It looked like the woman had been a flight attendant and possibly also had a pilot husband — not sure, but there were a lot of airplane-related items around.

Flight attendant paraphernalia

There were also a lot of purses, clothes, and beauty products.

Weird purses

And a whole mess of beanie babies … this was just a fraction.

Beanie babies and dog sculptures

We also found E.T.!

E.T. with lei

I am glad that Meghan had the presence of mind to take a picture of this amazing portrait — the woman of the house?

Portrait of a lady

The more I look at it the more I love it. Especially those hands. (Hand?) I think it’s probably one of those pictures where the eyes follow you around the room. It wasn’t the only oddball painting around. Some of them seemed to have a political bent. This one was titled “Dr. Obama.”

"Dr. Obama" painting

I kept thinking maybe I’d find something, but most of the stuff was either not my style or just baffling.

The Predatory Female

Finally I did find something that was baffling in a way that made me want to spend fifty cents and take it home.

Mr. Bill Says Khomeini Sucks

Meghan picked up a couple of wooden tokens that appeared to be whorehouse souvenirs, a cookbook, and a few other things. And that was it for our day!

Junk In My Trunk 4-6-13

Springtime sales with Styx, Phish, and the Dukes of Hazzard

Posted by Meghan in Grab Bag | 10 Comments

It’s true, all three of us met for sales this last Saturday and it was one of the first really nice weather breaks we have had. Meeting at my house at 8:30 Jenny and Karl started to talk about some sale that our saling comrade Pat had told Karl to hit. Sadly, I wasn’t able to 100% follow the conversation, since I was trying to clean up the entire 12 oz. glass of water that I had just spilt on my couch. Ehg.

Digging through the records

The sale turned out to be pretty good, with 4 boxes of pretty decent LP’s on the front porch. The seller did have some really good records, but as most of her prices had been just a buck or two lower than what you would find at a used record store, both Karl and I knew we wouldn’t be buying too much. Oddly enough, even though she was selling some great records, she was playing STYX — something that I couldn’t really not comment on. Meanwhile, there was this Record Nerdlinger (look I know my people!) who was trying to sort of be in all the boxes at once, or taking up as much space as he could, so Karl and I sort of surrounded him. Karl was sort of wrestling one of the boxes away from the nerdlinger guy, then all of a sudden both Karl and I started to serenade him with the chorus of the Styx song. I think it was then that he realized he was out of his league and mumbled off to other parts of the sale.

Inside the house she had some great stuff, but much of it had been sold already. We did see Pat and I picked up a really cool wood and metal milk crate from 1958. Jenny picked up office supplies — exciting, right? Then above the stairs we saw this amazing Dukes of Hazzard bean art.

Dukes of Hazzard Pasta/Bean Art

Now, it wasn’t for sale, so you don’t need to comment about how much it was or why we didn’t buy it or what we paid for it … that just proves that you don’t read. The seller told us that it was created by amazing mosaic portrait artist Jason Mecier.

We also found this! Yeah, it’s a foot bottle. Um, yeah. No comment.

A hoof

The next sale was a sort of moving-vintage-digger sale.

Table o' vintage crapola

Nothing was as amazing as you thought it would be when you broke into a new bag, but she had tons of stuff to look at and I think we all picked up a couple of things.

Piles of clothes

More piles

Jenny was sort of intrigued by this homemade sock-monkey-with-cigarette thing.

Smoking sock monkey

And both of us seemed fascinated by this note folder thing, since we both remember it from the late 70s or early 80s. Why a 9 year old would want that is sort of ridiculous if you think about or look at it for too long.

Paper Moon lips

The next was one that we had hit a year or so back (where we saw one of the most horrifying movie-prop creatures ever) and the guy was an artist or an art collector. The second we pulled up we knew it was the same guy. He was nice enough, but in the end he had a personality tic that I really don’t like: The One Upper. Meaning he has to one-up every single thing anyone has to say about anything. Starting when I noticed a poster and said it was cool: “Oh, that’s by Art Chantry and blah, blah, blah.” I tuned out, just saying “Yeah, Art is a nice guy” (implying that maybe I know him).

The entire sale was like that. If you said you like one fanzine out of the 50+ he had, he launched into some story about something. Jenny was accumulating a small stack of items, but I sort of just wanted to get the fuck out of there. Although he did have this bizarre kids book that I was sort of into.

Tongue Trippers

The next sale turned out to be newer deadheads who I guess follow Phish!

Hippie sale

I know this subculture, but it’s not my subculture, so I don’t really “get” making horrible jean pocket purses for sale.

Jeans pocket purse

We did hear a very long conversation about the upcoming 3 day Phish concert that the folks doing the sale planned to attend. GET ME OUT OF HERE!

We headed to another sale and saw this sign on the way.

Janky estate sale sign

It looked janky, but why not? Turned out to be a perma-sale with crazy prices.

Perma-estate sale

Run. What has our day turned into, it’s not even noon and the sales have started to suck.

Our last sale (as Karl moaned about needing a unicorn chaser) was pretty good. I mean he had pretty cool stuff, like this old record player.

Old record player

I purchased this vintage picnic set from the 20s.

Picnic set

After this it was time to call it a day!

Junk In My Trunk 3-30-13