Monday, September 27, 2010

Kitsch 'N Synch

Reunited and it feels so good.
Here's my childhood family wooden snack bowl beside my thrifted peanut bowl I bought at Value Village last year. The snack bowl hung in our kitchen and I don't ever remember putting actual snacks in it. I used to wonder why it had sausages on it. My adult eye tells me that the sausages are probably cheese twists. I like the peanut guy. I guess this came out before the world went lawsuit crazy, otherwise Planters wouldn't have let this happen.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Stephen Colbert Rules

Love the bit about the tomato being served by a Venezuelan while he gets a Brazilian.

Bounty Huntress - The Quicker Picker Upper

Look What Bounty Huntress made little old me?

I can't squeeze it in as a welcome message without the text getting cut off. I hope that my BHBFF can shrink it down, or I'll try to reproduce it somehow.
P.S. It was a disastrous thrifting Saturday so far. Money mishaps with online banking and pathetic yard sales that left me feeling drab. Things can only get better, right Howard Jones?

Friday, September 24, 2010

Gnawed Foot Button Update and Craig Who?

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I'm-a-gonna gnaw off ma foot if I don't get me a thrift!

Bounty Huntress, the wheels of way-too-much-time-on-my-hands-ness is working in overdrive. I want to make a thrift button involving self-cannibalization. Give me a little more time. I'm not even sure how to make buttons. Jeni from In Color Order knows, but she's so classy that I'm afraid to ask her how, in case she wonders what it's for. Jeni, if you're reading this, please don't think anything less of me. It's all Bounty Huntress' fault.

Here's a confession. Until tonight, I've never been on Craig's List. Whenever I read about it in the paper, it's usually some freaky story about someone trying to sell their own liver on this electronic buy and sell. Well, I thought I'd finally have a poke around in case there were any church rummage sales going on in my neck of the woods. I couldn't find any, but I did discover some yard sales tomorrow. One is promising a TurboCooker - whatever that is. Another is being billed as a Yard Sale for Peace. I just know I'll be guilted into buying something there. If I don't, I'm not very peaceful.

Wish me luck. I've been having a serious dry spell lately.

Watch the first 30 seconds of this video. I always loved the bouncy woman in the yellow jumpsuit. Work that jumpsuit woman. Work it!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Foot Ungnawed

Against logic, I rushed up to Value Village at lunch today. Sadly, no Pyrex, but I did get this dinky little John Deere toolbox, which Duncan has already turned into a marker caddy. Cost: $1.99
This little Chicago snow globe is actually very small. I love Chicago and I had to have it. Cost: $1.99. Fortunately, I made it back to school on time with both my feet attached.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Sparks in my Pants

I'm caught in the foot trap of work and haven't had a chance to do any decent thrifting. If I don't thrift tomorrow, I'll have to gnaw my foot off. Diary of a deranged thrifty teacher...

Here's the most under appreciated band of all time, or at least glam band: Sparks. This song is quirky, so very quirky.

Monday, September 20, 2010

How Did Spike Jonze Get Away With This?

This was broadcast for a very limited time in the nineties. I'm sure many people didn't get the joke.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

The Happy Rug Hooker

We hit the Thorncliffe Goodwill this afternoon. No funky bakeware, but we did find the following...
Kid's rug hooking kit still in its original packaging. $2.99. I think I'll teach some of the early finishers in my class how to use it and they can do some rug hooking in their free time.

Brand new President's Choice keep-the-insects-off-your-food thing. If I was English, I'd have some classy name for it, I'm sure. $2.99.
Old timey wooden diner napkin holder. Very Twin Peaks. $1.99
Brand new, tasteful picture frame .99!
Kids book on Alexander Graham Bell - $1.99
Pretty little plate. It looked old and crackled or spackled, but it lacked a maker's mark. $1.99.

Treasures From Dollarama

Creepy Tim Burton-esque tree - $2. I bough two and I'll use them in my classroom for a spooky book display. They come in other glittery colours.
Autumn wreath that Duncan wanted for his bedroom. I've trained him well. - $2
Leafy garland to drape around my doorway. It's a classic. $1 per garland.
Inflatable eyeballs - $1 for a package of three.
Atomic Age inspired Christmas tree ornament. $1. I feel like I'm in The Nightmare Before Christmas at Dollarama. One minute it's all Halloween stuff and then you turn the corner and it's Christmas. Where's the Easter bunny?

Tiny German Cake Apron

Duncan's birthday is at the tail end of August, so now that the school year has begun, he was finally able to have his party. We went to Danforth Bowl. It's a frozen-in-the-sixties 5-pin bowling alley at Coxwell and Danforth. If you live in the area and you love vintage things, it's a fun place to go.
Our not-so wee man blowing out the candles on his cake.
When we got home, we walked down to our local Value Village. I was hoping that I might luck out and find a sweet little Pyrex bowl, but the cupboards were bare. I did find this cute little German children's apron for $1.99. It's got four different cake recipes on it. Too bad I don't speak German.
I was going to bring it into my classroom for art activities, but I think it would get ruined. I'll let Duncan wear it for baking at home.
I also grabbed this Ikea picture easel for .99. I use these for book displays in the classroom.

I hope to thrift today. Let's hope something good comes along. I'm getting twitchy.

P.S. I just noticed that Madge, from Solid Cherry now has included Followers. She's got one of the best thrift blogs ever and it's been in action since 2006 - way longer than most of us. I strongly suggest you become a follower. She's a great photographer, she loves Pyrex and mid-century modern design, and she's got an adorable baby boy. What else could you ask for? Here's the link:

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

New Followers and More TV Viewing From my Youth

Welcome to new follower Yard Sale Queen Chris (gee, now we've got the Pyrex Queen and Yard Sale Queen together - I'm but a mere pawn piece). Welcome also to Alyssa Bee, R. Lucas, The Vintage Cabin, and Sue. I promise that thrift will come soon. I've been flushed down a big 'ol work toilet this week. If any parents of my students are reading, rest assured. I mean that in the best way possible. We've got Curriculum Night tomorrow and it's hard not to get swept up in other people's knickers-in-a-knot-ness. I'm happy though.

Here's more pointless TV from my childhood. Does anyone else remember this? I knew Kristy could take down Little House on the Prairie girl just like that.

or this? John Davidson's hair is what's incredible. You know Fran Tarkenton was putting needles into his well-coiffed John Davidson voodoo doll in the green room.
or this? I know Valerie remembers this one, because it was the only hit game show from Quebec - at least in the rest of Canada. It was shot in Montreal and the contestants would have to move on this big game board. The prizes were cheap. If you were lucky, you'd win a disco date for two. P.S. I don't expect you to watch all 10+ minutes, unless you're feeling especially bored. I like to think there's some new mother out there. Baby wakes up for a 2 a.m. feeding and the mom decides to watch pointless videos on the Yard Sale Snoop blog. That thought gives me purpose.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Thrifty Lunch a No Go - Sad Face

Due to unforeseen whatever at work today, I wasn't able to make it to Value Village. As my buddy Ana once suggested, the best thing is to imagine a store filled with ugly vases and boring kitchen stuff from the nineties. Ahh, that's better. I saved myself a bit of time.

Here's Bjork's awesome "Human Nature" video. I wish I were crafty enough to make a stuffed animal hedgehog, or whatever that critter is that nearly gets hit by the truck at the beginning.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Stripper Commercial From My Youth

I can't believe the following:
a. That I accidentally stumbled upon this commercial on YouTube
b. That someone actually had a recording of this and uploaded it to YouTube
c. That I used to pretend to strip off my clothes like the woman on the commercial when I was a kid, not having a single clue what was going on
d. That some creepy producer thought this commercial was a good idea in the first place, though I do like the song.

See for yourself.

Some Like it Dirty

I know I'm so, like, three or four years behind, but I've just become a fan of Dirty Jobs with Mike Rowe. We used to be the bunny ear cable folk who had to wear tin pie plates on our heads and dance around the May pole just to get TVO and CBC. Now we've got a dish and that means I'm finally watching too many odd shows to be considered normal.
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Anyway, I like Mike Rowe a lot. He's actually hilarious. We watched him clean the windows on a huge office building in Hawaii. There was more beeping than I've ever seen on one episode. The audio guy got his long, surfer dude hair caught in a pulley and they had to cut him free with a jack knife.
Did anyone else see this? Okay, I'm going to try to thrift at lunch tomorrow, so I'll stop prattling on about TV shows.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Fisher Price A Frame

This message is to TR, who left a comment a couple posts back about having a Fisher Price A Frame. I'm so excited. Please drop me an email at

Here's a commercial that features a bunch of toys from my childhood. I can't believe how long commercials were back in the seventies compared to nowadays.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Cabbagetown Yard Sales

This morning, I cracked open the Saturday Star and there was my Pyrex article in the Weekend Living section. Wow. I was so pleased with how it turned out. The article was successful because of the enthusiasm and intelligence of my Pyrex collecting buddies in the Blogosphere that inspired the piece in the first place. I couldn't have written the article had it not been for my sisters and brothers in thrift. The other reason the article was so successful was the layout of all those gorgeous pictures of Jeni from In Color Order. What ever direction her studies and interests take her, you just know that she's got a brilliant career ahead of her. Hugs, Jeni!
Zooming in
Look at the pretty photography and layout. They even managed to squeeze in my rustic porch cam shot of my first Pyrex love. It's amazing what a little cropping can do. I wish I could do that to my bottom!
Well, I had half-jokingly suggested in my last post that I was hoping to find some Mexican Day of the Dead folk art at the ginormous Cabbagetown festival (which included numerous yard sales). Look what I bought! It's a pretty luminario. This tin church includes a candleholder tucked inside. It was new and had an original price tag on it of $40.00. I got it for $8.00. Happy Erin.
Proof that sooner or later, we all turn into our fathers. I got this Moulinex electric carving knife for $2.00 from a really fun group of people raising money for a girl's basketball team.
Tiny and old Marc Chagall book for $1.00
What's inside? Hmm. Don't tell me. I think I can figure it out...
If you guessed advent tree, you are correct.
The wooden tree sits in the golden star base.
In the days leading up to Christmas, you add little pegs to decorate it. I thought this was sweet and knew Duncan would have fun adding to it. It was new in the box and cost $8.00. I would have liked it better for $5.00 or $4.00, but I never bargain down prices. I can hear my parents saying, "That would have been $1.00 at a rummage sale in St.Catharines. Yes, yes. Toronto is expensive and there were a lot of inflated prices at the Cabbagetown festival with vendors selling "antique" items for "antique dealer" prices.
This was my best deal of the day: a huge love banner that cost $2.00. I'm going to hang it on my classroom door in February. I bought it in the early afternoon. I'm surprised that nobody else liked it well enough for such a low price.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Thriftquake Coming

Tomorrow, I plan to hit the Cabbagetown festival in Toronto. Apparently they have a mammoth yard sale. My sister reminded me that it was at the Cabbagetown festival where she bought two huge fuzzy pimp hats for her daughter. I don't believe she used the word "pimp," however. Here's what I want:
- a humongous critter cage for the class hamster who will eventually chew through her plastic tube cage
- Pyrex, naturually (I'll settle for one pretty little bowl)
- old tea towels and/or fabric that's been sitting in someone's basement since the sixties
- a mid-century modern Danish lamp (I'll be tripping over those)
- Fisher-Price Family A-Frame house from my childhood that's miraculously found its way back to me, like one of those dogs that intuitively runs thousands of miles across America back to its owner
- mini Tupperware salad dressing containers in Misty Mint shades
- lightly worn creepers (black with leopard print) in ladies' size 9 (again, I'm sure I'll be finding them everywhere)
- insanely chunky Frida Kahlo-style bead necklace
- Day of the Dead folk art (I'll take anything)

Hmm. That's about it. I'd also love to come back with something to love that I hadn't even thought of.

Here's a dreamy song by The Cocteau Twins.
Heavenly thrifting to each and everyone.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Vintage Chanel No 5 Commercial

I had to track down peanut-free gerbil food after school today for our class pets. When our car pulled into the parking lot at Pet Valu (their spelling, not mine), we were THIS close to Value Village. I had to work very hard to not go in. Long suffering husband was waiting in the car and I had Duncan with me which meant that he'd want to look at the toys and we'd never get out within 20 minutes. So, I went and bought the gerbil food and fantasized about what could have been.

Speaking of sharing the fantasy, here's a retro Chanel No 5 commercial from my childhood. Does anyone else remember it? I was so intrigued by "Charles" and "Kathrine" and the shadow of the mysterious airplane on the skyscraper. And what did "Charles" want to ask "Katherine"? It all seemed so utterly glamorous to me.
Hope your thrifting has been more fruitful this week.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

The Thrift That Got Away

Here's what I didn't buy at Value Village yesterday, but I could have:
Ivy leaf mixing bowl without a maker's mark on the bottom. I want to buzz in with Hazel Atlas, but I'm all "Hazel Atlas this, Hazel Atlas that" this week. Two months ago, I didn't even know what Hazel Atlas was.
The price stickers were covering the maker's mark. I want to say Fire King. Feel free to buzz in on the Crockery Quiz Show. You can steal this from me. I love the butterscotch sheen of these bowls. They remind me of my childhood.
Pretty Remington Ten Forty typewriter.
Stepford wife-era fondu kit in avocado green with "crazy" daisies. Time for a key party - not!

Speaking of seventies, they were playing Steely Dan's "Peg" while I was in there. Suddenly, memories came flooding back. There I am sitting in the back of our large, wood-paneled Chevy station wagon crammed in with my brother and sisters. All of us girls have pigtails with those fuzzy ribbons tied at the end. My dad has sideburns and my brother is wearing North Star sneakers. Mom's wearing a sun dress and straw sun hat. None of us are wearing seatbelts. Dad cranks the radio dial and this song comes on.

Ahh, those were the days. P.S. It's good to wear a seatbelt these days. Just thought I'd throw that in.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Using Thrifted Goods in the Classroom 2010

I posted pics of my thrifted new classroom on The Foolscap Flyer. If you feel like taking a look. Click here. Now please stand for "Oh Canada."

Friday, September 3, 2010

Hazel Atlas Bonanza

After putting the final touches on my new classroom, I hit the Value Village close to my school with a colleague who is hip to thrifting. We've decided to have funky rooms and try to hit VV once a week at lunch. I had no expectations this time since my current trips to Goodwill and VV have been fruitless. Well, today was different.
Look what I got! The complete set of Hazel Atlas utensil pattern mixing bowls from the 1940s. I'm still pinching myself. You'll remember how I bought the large size bowl at another VV a couple of months ago now. I think I paid $4.99 for it. I never thought I'd even find any other pieces.
So now I have the complete set, plus an extra large mixing bowl. I can't believe anyone would want to part with this.
Here's the best part: the price. The large bowl was $2.99, the medium bowl was $1.99, and the small bowl was $1.49. The pricing at Value Village is so inconsistent, but I'm not about to take them back telling them that the bowls were underpriced. I'm a happy woman today.
I bought this straw dispenser for Duncan. We always have straw dispensing issues and this solves the problem in style. Price: $1.99. Not bad.
Ever since I saw My Big Fat Greek Wedding, I had a nagging suspicion that I've somehow betrayed my hopelessly WASP background by not having a Bundt cake tin. It's not like we had Bundt cake all the time when I was growing up. Still, I dream of making something spongey and delicious with chocolate drizzled down the hole. Cost: .99¢
Speaking of .99¢, I got this piece of pale green pottery for the same price. It looked like it had been in someone's family for a long time and now nobody loved it. I like it.

I loved this groovy little Anchor Hocking bowl for $1.99.
Quick: name that glass manufacturer...
Oooh, I think Madge had her hand on the buzzer before Valerie. Yes, it is Pyrex. I actually bought it to use more than admire. We needed sturdy bowls this size and although they're not breathtakingly beautiful, they're not hideous either.
For $2.99 I bought this cute Made in Japan gravy boat. As you'll see in the photos below, I've got three different ones. I was charmed by the turkey and had to add it to the collection.

I think they'd look great hanging on the wall.
They really liked their gravy separated back in the sixties.

That's all, folks. Thanks for reading.

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.