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Little Big Shop

28 Jan

Here’s what’s up in the shop:

Last Haul of the Season

24 Jan

Ah, summer. That magical time when I visited the Farmer’s Market each week and planned our meals accordingly. Now that the market has closed and the local fruit stands have boarded up their windows, I have only my memories and occasional trips to the local remate to tide me over. It’s tough to get there with the kid, and cold and muddy, too, and I have a hard time struggling to carry all those purchases the distance I have to walk back to the car. I can’t wait until May.

These photos are from the last market of the season back in October. This trip was extra special because I was able to fit some thrifting in that day, too.

The plates, bowls and hangers are all thrifted. Purchases that day included green beans, pea shoots, pomegranates, raw almonds, peaches, grape tomatoes, hummus, red pepper tapenade, and a butternut squash.

The sunflower seeds pictured here were actually grown in my garden. Earlier in the season Isobel and I checked out a local nursery’s booth at the Farmer’s Market and they had a display with soil, a little peat pot and seeds. We happened to run into my cousin’s family there, so Isobel and her cousin Victoria got to plant their own sunflower seeds. We watered it and placed it above the sink and two days later it sprouted. It was so magical for Isobel and I to watch. We watched it bloom and eventually cut it down. Isobel helped me pluck the seeds from the flower head. It was incredibly easy and required little more than water on my part.

The amber jar and wooden salt and pepper shakers in the background were also purchased secondhand that day, along with the Pyrex, mushroom cruets, and very awesome (but naturally, inaccurate) vintage dinosaur place mat. I picked up the letter sorter for Isobel and milk glass dish below for a song.

I miss you, summer.

The Thrifted Closet

8 Jan

While working on Life List item #11, I decided I’m going to share some of my thrifty outfits with you. This outfit features three recent thrift store scores: the sweater, the belt, and (my favorite) the skirt. Made any good clothing scores lately?

Little Big Shop

7 Jan

Here’s what’s up in the shop.

  1. Embroidered Vintage Clutch
  2. Mid Century Mod & Folk Art Calendar Plates
  3. Sale: Georges Briard Chrysanthemum Mug
  4. Green Cloth Napkin Set
  5. Deep Brown Japanese Stoneware Mug
  6. Prairie Wall Plaque
  7. Perfect Snowflake Plate
  8. Soft Brown Butterfly Dish

I do take specific requests for custom items. If there’s something you want me to keep an eye out for while thrifting, let me know!

Best of 2011: Thrifty Living

28 Dec

These are my favorite Thrifty Living posts from 2011

Thrifty Living: Christmas Finds

22 Dec

When Anthony and I lived in a one-bedroom apartment decorating for the holidays was easy. I had 500 or so square feet to work with and I Christmas’d the hell out of it. It was adorable, and when we finally bought our house I spent the first Christmas lamenting the apartment. The smallness of the space made my decorations seem much more abundant and adorable then they actually were. Which is why I spend time each year scouring thrift stores for decorations to add to my meager holiday stash.

Just like for Halloween decorations, Christmas decorations are abundant in thrift stores this time of year. My favorite charity shop is now selling all Christmas-related items at half off since in a few days they’ll have to pack it all up and store it away for next year.

Unlike Halloween decorations, the Christmas goodies you find while thrifting can be quite old and wonderful. Or not, such as the mess in the photo above. I bought that for a quarter while thrifting, and for a very special reason.

These adorable Italian mushrooms.

They have a wreath with their name on them. Or something else. I haven’t really decided. But the rest of the centerpiece wasn’t wasted. Zorro and Isobel spent a two full days entertaining themselves with it. After that I boxed up the rest of the holly sprigs that I thought I might use later and donated or threw away the rest.

I found this vintage place mat illustrated with hand drawn holiday decorations. Actually I found a whole set of them, but I’m keeping two. Isobel is kind of obsessed with her vintage dinosaur place mat right now so this mat is usually ignored, but I bet she’ll dig it next year.

I just found this crocheted decoration that’s hanging on my wall as is right now but I might turn it into a photo frame or add some more bells to it.

I have my grandmother’s angel chimes (the traditional kind, with angels instead of a carousel theme) but I always buy angel chimes whenever I find them. I love them and have found it’s useful to keep a couple sets around in case I lose a piece I have a spare. The cats go wild for them, though, so I have to keep them up high and mostly out of sight. I know people say that once you have kids you can’t have nice things, but really that applied to us before we had Isobel because we had cats.

You’ve seen these angels before, but I just had to show them off again. They are my favorite Christmas find this year.

In the same vein of the weird centerpiece in the photo above, I bought this Christmas mess for the parts. I love the holly sprigs and I managed to detach the apples and strawberries for Isobel’s Thrifted Kitchen. I’m using the extra pieces of greenery with birds attached to decorate wrapped Christmas presents. It also has fake plastic popcorn on this, which I’ve never seen before and is kind of hilarious.

But mostly I bought this basket for the teeny tiny mushrooms dotting the display. I pulled those off before Isobel could get to them and used the wire part to attach them to the small silver Christmas tree I used to put up at work.

New favorite ornaments.

Isobel was pretty stoked when I found these guys. It’s pretty obvious they’ve had a few owners. Modeled after these vintage characters that show up again and again in holiday decor of a certain era, these two characters had recently been abused by someone who really fugged them up.

Mrs. Frosty’s hat, candy cane, and scarf were removed and replaced and it took me awhile to pry the hideous buttons of both of them. Eventually I’m gong to repaint them and restore them to their former glory. But for now they’re hanging out on my porch.

It is I, the Christmas Asshole – A Thrifted Christmas

20 Dec

Anthony and I are not going to tell Isobel about Santa. We are the type of asshole parents that approach child-rearing with the aim to be as open and truthful (and developmentally appropriate) with our child as possible. That’s not to say she won’t find presents waiting for her under the tree on Christmas morning, or that we are going to squash other children’s belief in the big guy. She’ll know all the myths and stories about him, but they will remain just that: myths and stories. Besides, lots of people this time of year are so keen on telling everybody that Santa isn’t the reason for the season anyway, so I don’t think this deviation from the parenting norm should really be all that big of a deal.

To reiterate, though: I do not care if you wholeheartedly encourage your child to believe in Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, the Loch Ness Monster or the viability of a Republican candidate for the presidency. Santa is small potatoes in the big scheme of parenting and it’s not worth making a fuss over. I truly believe that in this regard parents make their own rules for the household and it’s not my place to judge. Or care.  So why don’t we focus on what matters: presents.

If Isobel asks why we don’t believe in Santa we are going to tell her about the universal spirit of generosity and goodwill Santa represents. It sounds better than saying, “Honey, we believe in science!” but it means the same thing. “Yes, we believe in science. That’s why this year you’re getting Quantum Presents this Christmas, my dear! This one’s from someone named Schrödinger. Your present may or may not be a dead cat. Don’t open the box, sweetheart! That ruins the mystery.”

Since we are embracing the Handmade & Vintage Christmas this year I have been saving up thrifted items for her since this summer. I can’t wait for her to discover these gifts under the tree:

BAM! You just got Care Bear Stared IN THE FACE! You now possess the uncontrollable urge to share.

Can you believe I found the vintage 1983 Care-A-Lot for thirty cents? Thirty cents! I nearly died. After I found that I won Funshine, Tenderheart, Cheer Bear, and Friendship Bear on eBay for seven bucks. Earlier in the year I made a major CB faux pas when I failed to remember the correct name is “Funshine Bear” instead of “Sunshine Bear.” Multiple people came forward to tell me what’s what. This lead Anthony and I to have a discussion about The Care Bears Cousins. Remember them? If you don’t I’ll jog your memory: their names, according to my perfect memory, were Lion-O, Trumpet Face, and Hippo. Since that incident I’ve collected several stuffed Care Bees (as they are known in my household) at thrift stores and yard sales.

Isobel spends about 90% of her daily vocalizations requesting I turn on the Care Bears. Of those times it’s an even split between asking if she can watch “Care Bears,” meaning the Big Wish movie, or “Different Care Bears” meaning any of the newer Care Bee movies that are out. Big Wish is by far her favorite, and I’ve had it on so often that I’ve unconsciously started singing the songs only to be found out and heckled by Anthony. LET YE WHO HAS NEVER SUNG ‘I LIKE FISH’ IN THE VOICE OF TOODEE CAST THE FIRST STONE, ANTHONY.

Before our household underwent a freeze on any non-crucial spending I did pick up a few other things while thrifting and out and about at Michael’s. These presents are for Isobel’s stocking. Er, except the globe, which won’t really fit. But damn, three dollars for a vintage globe that still includes Rhodesia and the USSR? That shit is coming home with mama.

I bought her two kazoos because she’s going to need one each for her and Kingston when he comes over to play. Last summer we got her together with the neighbor kids and made an impromptu marching band with their musical instruments. Imagine the melodious sounds of seven kids, all under the age of 11, banging on drums, wailing on the recorder, and clashing the cymbals as they marched down the street. A ruckus like that is a surefire way to make our property values skyrocket.

That train whistle in the photo above is supposed to be for ages 5 and up. This confuses me as it has no small parts and my child can exhale just as well, if not better than, your average five year old. That’s my baby! She sure can breathe out good.

The teapot we found while thrifting is going to make an excellent addition to her Thrifted Toy Kitchen.

I know many of you are participating in Handmade Christmas. Any one else out there doing a Thrifted Christmas as well?

Little Big Shop Sale!

17 Dec

Here’s what’s up in the shop!

Recent Additions to the Little Big Shop:

Embroidered Vintage Clutch, granny chic.

Daisy Wall Plaque, your bathroom needs this.

Thrift Store Gore – White Elephant Gift Exchange Gifts:

(Confused about this section of the store? This should clear it up.)

Frightening Anne Geddes Bear.

Handcrafted Abalone Lamp.

Instructional Romance Book.

Speaking of the Grandchildren Photo Album.

Burned Down Schoolhouse Commemorative Plate.

Remember! Lucky buyers of Thrift Store Gore will get a photo of drunk Santa for your troubles. Someone’s been naughty this year! SPOILER ALERT: It’s Santa.

Little Big Shop Sale Items:

Designer Chrysanthemum Mug, price lowered by $6.00!

Vintage Baby Book, price lowered by $10.00!

Copper Parthenon Ashtray, price lowered by $6.00!

Vintage Glass Storage Jars, price lowered by $10.00!

Keep checking back as I’m adding more items all the time! Sale ends in a week or so or when I remember to change it back.

Follow Friday: Christmas Elf

16 Dec

Today’s Follow Friday is brought to you by Isobel’s $1.oo thrift store Santa dress. It’s the miniature version of the Christmas dress of my dreams, and since it just barely fits her this is probably the only time she will get to wear it. I’m trying to get as much mileage out of it as possible.

What is Follow Friday? It’s a Twitter meme that I have taken a couple steps further.  Learn more about it in my FAQ. See my nomination for a Shorty Award for Follow Friday here. You can read more Follow Friday goodness here.

rileyroxme Can’t wait for the day C.P.S shows up and they’re like “Twitter.” and I’m like “Hold on while I livetweet this blowjob.”

JulieFredericks Newt is having a surge. Gross.

suitcasetricks Email from my husband: “I love you and the Hamburger Helper I’m eating for breakfast.” This guy really knows how to talk to the ladies.

thejohnblog My boss is in the stall next to me. Is it brown nosing if I periodically say “Good one, boss?” Because OH GOD HE TAPPED MY FOOT

dadourianbow Get the fuck outta here you beanie wearing motherfucker. #MerryDissmas

MmeSurly Ruby just called the bad guy from Inspector Gadget “Dr. Claus” which explains why she’s been so nervous lately.

shariv67 I never thought I’d see a day when our phones were smarter than us, and yet here we are.

ProfessorSnack Crotchety: pertaining to the groin. “After a week of not bathing, he smelled crotchety.”

michellehudson Getting in a very sappy life-loving mood this morning. Must be the second cup of coffee.

eliza_evans Do not sign a professional email with ‘Hugs!’ Just don’t.

milonguera @MeganBoley I quoted The Jerk in a reply yesterday. And then favorited myself. Super winner.

neiltyson Suffering existential angst over a Pluto-less mnemonic? Try “My very Educated Mother Just Served Us Nachos”

MeganBoley And yet, I find myself quoting Anchorman in my inner dialogue multiple times a day. So I guess my inner dialogue is obnoxious.

Lilacmess @exlibris You can see Avery Brooks trying to keep that crazy tamed but sometimes he has to let it run free.

simontarr Having an allergic reaction to something. My eyes are so swollen I look like a UC Davis student.

sween Sometimes I see parents with their kids and I get jealous. [Sips beer. Plans leisure activities. Counts disposable income.] So jealous.

jberthume The Dew is required. I am doing it.

ProfessorSnack I just want to get toned enough that dogs want to hump my leg again. #NewYearsResolution

MmeSurly I think Gwyneth Paltrow and I have a lot in common. For instance: I think we both hate Gwyneth Paltrow.

AuntiPax Oh THAT was the deputy? Ok then I guess I shot him too. My bad.

MariaMelee The BBQ I had for lunch is haunting me in a profound way.

pnkrcklibrarian Aging, alternative hipsters apparently spend their nights stuffing balls and listening to a lecture on land tax in England from 1692 – 1963

MrWordsWorth Zombies celebrate the holidays with a Perducken: a person stuffed with a duck and a chicken.

shelldash Google Music is apparently offering me (ME!) “free Dave Matthews Band concerts”. Wondering if Bing Music might counter with “free earplugs”.

CandyWarhole You don’t know what you got ’til its diagnosed by a licensed physician.

theRratedBull When Texans ask me why I moved to Kansas I just tell ’em I’m a storm chaser because it’s the only reason they could possibly comprehend.

ecsuperhero I have the best work Secret Santa. So far I’ve gotten a wine glass and a McDonald’s g/c. Alcohol and fatty food? YOU COMPLETE ME, SANTA.

sgnp If you want to know how long a minute is, my daughter will be happy to ask you every single second of one.

badbanana My favorite holiday drink is the Little Drummer Boy. It’s one part rum, three parts pum.

donni Tuneless whistling is about to be the #1 cause of murder-suicides on this bus.

slackmistress I don’t think I know who Ryan Gosling is which is probably a sign that my ladyparts are going to fall out.

sarcasmically …Is UPS not doing too well? Because the UPS man just rolled up to my house in a golf cart.

jenstatsky A lot of oddly-shaped presents get a bad wrap.

sarcasmically Just yelled “USE YOUR WORDS” at the whining dog, so it’s probably time I called it a day.

rstevens Warning to all who visit: My wifi is now called Invisible Touches

badbanana “I enjoy working with a hammer, but I don’t want a blue collar job.” – Everyone who eventually becomes a judge.

theleanover If reality was better we probably wouldn’t need pretend talking.

pilotbacon I only drink coffee so I can stare at a blank Final Draft document for longer than usual.

mikeleffingwell Super surprised to find out the most popular song played at orgies is “You’ve Got a Friend in Me”

johnmoe Still unclear whether the next debate will be hosted by Larry the wacky neighbor from Three’s Company or Jo from Facts of Life.

mylifeasadad I’m scraping Alela’s two day old butternut squash purée off my sweater because really, no one will ever know.

tommycm if today were a labrador, i’d have it humanely put down.

steenyweeny i’m named after an ancient sumerian god who used a giant spiked hockey stick to clobber the skulls of those who said ‘holy doodle’ too much.

sarcasmically When is “fuckton” going to be officially accepted as a unit of measurement? –because it is probably the one I use most.

ohnoCAPSLOCK Jack is having a growth spurt. I just leaked milk through a breast pad and three layers of shirts. #sexyandclassy

davepolak I am coming up with my strategic game plan to maximize the amount of ham I eat over the holidays.

sgnp Not a big fan of someone entering the restroom immediately after me and then choosing the stall next to mine, like we’re in a horrible race.

JRehling Like my desk wasn’t messy enough already, now it’s totally covered with Higgs Bosons.

InfiniteChicken You haven’t heard Christmas music until you’ve heard it in a lobby, transposed into augmented minors by a jazz combo.

RailbirdJ Worst Christmas gift? A dolphin t-shirt. Take a second to look at my avi. Do I look like a dolphin guy to you?

helgagrace It’s that time of year! People coming in to the library to find out their property values.

ajthizzle Ok. I need to do something productive. Butt, say goodbye to couch. No, don’t linger. It’s better this way.

MassageByTed In the way that protesters sometimes throw red paint on people in furs, I propose throwing some sort of ersatz jizz on guys in Tapout gear.

apodixis I don’t really want to go to Funkytown, to be honest.

BillCorbett I finally get it! “We built this city on rock-and-roll,” meaning they smothered and crushed rock-and-roll under huge buildings, killing it.

EvenMoreSarah Me to the dog: “Come here, little fellow.” My BF: “Did you just call the dog a dildo?” Oh sure, *I’m* the one who needs my ears cleaned

JerryThomas Klout “believes” that I am “influential about iPhone.” Do you hear that, iPhone? (give me a free iPhone)

CParkhurst1 I strongly suspect that after the fourth day of Christmas, someone started dropping hints that more bird gifts would not be appreciated.

MisterSnuggl3s I have to carb load before brushing my teeth. In case you were curious about what kind of athlete I am.

Patheticist You can unconditionally love children and animals, other adult humans must have a few conditions.

hipstermermaid Beer before liquor, never been sicker. Liquor before weed, forget how to rhyme.

MeganBoley Twitter, I never say goodnight to you. I always just doze off in mid-conversation like we are at a 5th grade sleepover. Goodnigdkendkjszzzzz

CanuckLibrarian Sometimes you just need a little Kool & the Gang.

kaitlin_olson My boobies are getting big. I want to say that makes up for not being able to drink, not sleeping well and often peeing my pants.

RothNotIRA “I love you dada. I love you couch.” Well, at least I’m on par with furniture.

corrinrenee Autocorrect just changed my name to Cotton Floater.

SpaghettiJesus EVERY KNIFE BEGINS WITH KAY. #HappyHolidays

theleanover If I was a Hispanic hair dresser I would name my salon “Jesus Dyed.”

NoReservations What Would Jesus Eat? Apparently pigeon.

muffpunch “Who’s this Ting Ting person and why is he in my CD player?” Oh, mom.

apelad Why is everyone so concerned about my eyesight? Every email I get begins with “having trouble viewing this message?” The answer is no!!

Greeblemonkey We’re working on more homemade Christmas presents tonight, which basically means I am covered head to toe with modpodge.

cheekyattitude Took a while, but I overcame my fear of butternut squash.. in its defense, it wasn’t really trying to maim me.

burnstand AWW YEAH! Dropping food flakes in to my brand new keyboard! This thing is gonna be disgusting before you can say “gluttony”!

notthatkendall In the massage train of life, I am on the wrong end.

mikeleffingwell There are no atheists in foxholes. All foxes are Hindu.

The_Pigeon Just did a 5K run. I put 5 thousand dollars in my pants & got outta there.

DachsundDays And I saw a gigantic evil badger on a throne with 13 chihuahuas at his feet, yipping the theme from The Omen . . .

NicLewis “The best part of waking up? No, you’ve got Folgers in your cup.” #HonestSlogans

SpaghettiJesus “The world runs on starch and animal fat” #honestslogans

ecareyo It’s almost like the E! channel specifically knows that I’ll dedicate many hours watching a countdown of the most notorious lady murderers

JohnFugelsang Mitt Romney is as genuine as a mass emailing from Phoenix University.

JerryThomas If you need anybody to lie utterly motionless on the couch for six hours tomorrow let me know.

CorporateMonkey “only way I’m dropping trou in front of that many people is if there are Quaaludes involved.” -actual convo occurring in my office right now

ncguk “We spent so long looking for the Higgs boson, and all the time it was in our hearts.” — Higgs Boson Christmas Special

What is Follow Friday? It’s a Twitter meme that I have taken a couple steps further.  Learn more about it in my FAQ. See my nomination for a Shorty Award for Follow Friday here. You can read more Follow Friday goodness here.

Little Big Shop Sale!

10 Dec

Here’s what’s up in the shop!

Recent Additions to the Little Big Shop:

Embroidered Vintage Clutch, granny chic.

Daisy Wall Plaque, your bathroom needs this.

Thrift Store Gore – White Elephant Gift Exchange Gifts:

(Confused about this section of the store? This should clear it up.)

Frightening Anne Geddes Bear.

Handcrafted Abalone Lamp.

Instructional Romance Book.

Speaking of the Grandchildren Photo Album.

Burned Down Schoolhouse Commemorative Plate.

Remember! Lucky buyers of Thrift Store Gore will get a photo of drunk Santa for your troubles. Someone’s been naughty this year! SPOILER ALERT: It’s Santa.

Little Big Shop Sale Items:

Designer Chrysanthemum Mug, price lowered by $6.00!

Vintage Baby Book, price lowered by $10.00!

Copper Parthenon Ashtray, price lowered by $6.00!

Vintage Glass Storage Jars, price lowered by $10.00!

Keep checking back as I’m adding more items all the time! Sale ends in a week or so or when I remember to change it back.