Sunday, November 22, 2009

Finding Family Memories Through Thrift

How often do you thrift for things that you had growing up? I've psychoanalyzed the situation and I think that in some ways, I'm trying to preserve the happiest moments of my childhood.
My father, two sisters, and everyone on my dad's side of the family are Australian. Growing up, we were sent copious amounts of kitschy souvenirs from Down Under. I liked the goodies that were sent over, because I was a kid. My mother tended to shudder at all the tea towels. I found this Australian bamboo snack plate at Value Village for $1.49. I also bought this cheerful rolling pin for $1.99. I've got about six rolling pins in my collection now. They get used in my classroom when we're working with salt dough, etc.
Close-up of my Australia plate.
With throbbing arm (see my H1N1 needle story from the previous post), we went to St. Catharines yesterday to visit my folks. My parents took us out for lunch and on the way back to their house, we stopped at Goodwill. My mother and husband sat in the car, while my father, Duncan and I hit the store. I found this amazing vintage children's book of facts. It was so fascinating that I took it to bed last night. I learned a few things...
such as telling poisonous mushrooms from the edible ones...
and whether shock can cause grey hair.
I love the illustrations in the book. It cost $2.00 The book prices at Goodwill could be a little cheaper, but I was still pleased.
I also got this book for Duncan called Gluey about the friendship between a rabbit and a snail who goes around gluing things with his slime. I read it to Duncan and we both thought it was funny and beautifully illustrated.
Score! I got these vintage candlestick holders at Goodwill for $2.00 each. We had similar ones growing up. They were actually made in Toronto, so you know they're old.
Arty post-war Japanese double candlestick holder. I love the colour combination and the swirly pattern.
I think I paid $2.00 for it.
This little Christmas tree decoration isn't vintage, but for .50, I still had to have it.

Lastly, here's my song of the week #21 - David Sylvian's "September." Sylvian started out in a glammy/new wavey band called Japan. They were good. His solo music is even better. He writes music that is often dark, introspective and experimental. Not to everyone's taste, but to mine anyway. This is a short clip.


  1. I've often wondered why it is that I am so attracted to the things I remember from my childhood, especially lately. And I have come to the conclusion that I had such a happy childhood, and just want to surround myself with all of that stuff! So that is why I keep buying tacky plastic Christmas decorations!

  2. Yes! I do find myself buying things that remind me of my childhood! Wishing I still had the original but feeling blessed to have found one "just like it". Love your finds and the brown and green candle holder is wonderful. Have a great Holiday!


  3. Yes I definitely thrift for some chilhood treasures. Also tacky was verbotten in my family so I find I'm collecting all sorts of tacky things (a rebellious phase?). I plant the same perrenials in my borders that my dad did when I was a kid...

  4. I bought toooons of stuff because it reminds me of my child hood! I love happy memories! I bought a bowl the other day because it was the one that my dad made his "famous" dip in as a kid! lol. It just reminds me of family time around the tv!

  5. It's so good to have you back, Queen of Clearance! I hope you are feeling well. The thrifty blogisphere just ain't the same without you.

  6. Yes, I'm with you...I do buy things that bring back memories.. and I find I look for ads the same way. When I look for my tuesday ads alot of them are about memories.... Never thought of it till I read this...

  7. I collect things that remind me of my grandmother-- I'm pretty young so I grew up in the 80s/90s... not an aesthetically pleasing time period!

    The things I love most-- vintage lockets and costume jewelry, clothing from the 1950s, kitchen items remind me of her. Also, I like to collect things from places I've lived or visited (Hawa'ii, California, Arkansas, Chicago).


About Me

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I'm a slightly off-beat Toronto-area teacher who enjoys writing and photography. I come from a family of collectors and now I'm dragging my own family around to yard sales. It's just a bit of fun. Enjoy the scenes.