January 4, 2009

I Am A Thing-Finder...

"What are we going to do now?" said Tommy.

"I don't know what you are going to do," said Pippi, "but I know I can't lie around and be lazy.  I am a Thing-finder, and when you are a Thing-finder you don't have a minute to spare."

"What's that?" asked Tommy.

"Somebody who hunts for things, naturally.  What else could it be?" said Pippi. 

 "The whole world if full of things and somebody has to find them.  And that's just what a Thing-finder does." she finished.

"What kind of things?" asked Annika.

"Oh, all kinds." said Pippi. 
 "Lumps of gold, ostrich feathers, dead rats, candy snap crackers, and tiny little screws and things like that." - Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren 1950
My shoppe, GardenologyKC is closed for the month of January and that means a much awaited rest after the Holiday Season in retail.  It's a tough 90 days of really hard work keeping the shoppe open, stocked, and filling as many custom orders as possible.  I love it.  But, I also love the month of January - it's blissfully quiet.

I went out yesterday with my Mom and Aunt Sherry to visit as many antique, flea market, and whatever else we thought looked like an interesting stop.  I thought I would share the day and my finds that I brought home with me from our Thing-finding Jaunt.

We started out on our adventure around 9am so that we would be at the first shop at around 10am when they first opened for the day.

Our first unexpected stop was at an Amish store front with baked goods inside.  We were too late arriving around 9:30am for the baked goods.  We'll stop earlier next time...

Fortunately, the store was also filled with primitive antiques for sale.  I browsed and found two flower seed packets from the 1940s, a garden catalog from 1937, a vintage children's book and a small star cookie cutter.  

The store was heated with a vintage wood stove that was in full blaze to take the chill out of the air for the day.  A brother and sister were minding the store complete with bonnet and hat.  They were delightful and like most adolescents they had left home without the change drawer.  We had to pony up our money to get the exact change for them.   Sherry is so sweet she provided them with enough change to get them through the morning until the change drawer could be brought to the store.
Our next stop was one of my Mom's favorites a combination flea market/antique store.  They had hundreds of books and DVD's.  Purchases were quickly made of Danielle Steele for my Mom, Clive Clusser for my husband, Dan and Louis Lamor for my Dad.

I also found another vintage children's book with illustrations by Jesse Wilcox Smith and a hardback copy of True Grit (more on that later).
Off to the next town and lunch.  We laughed as my Mom ordered her cheeseburger with extra onions and chimed in that we wanted extra onions, too.   Why not?  We had lunch at a small town cafe in small town America - perfect.  Our first onion burgers were delicious as the onions were sliced wafer thin and were sweet vadalia onions.  Mints all around....
Mother of Pearl pill box - a must have for a future jewelry project.  I love finding vintage brass boxes - they hold the most wonderful things - the options are endless.
I found vintage silverware, rare coins, a lampshade, vintage lace, velvet and satin at our next stop.  We did alot of driving between stops as alot of antique shops are closed during the Winter months and keep reduced hours.  We made note of many shops we want to return to in the Spring.

Our next to the last stop was the best for us.  I found vintage glass beads, an autograph book, more Louie Lamor books for my Dad, bakelite buttons, vintage post cards, accounts ledger book from the 1940s and a couple of great books for mixed media projects.

My Mom and Sherry found so many antiques that took them on a sentimental journey of sorts, squealing I have that radio, my brother sent that to me from Korea, and do you remember these?
Angus was fascinated with the flashlight lenses that I found at our last stop.  They will be so much fun to use for soldering projects.  My terriers are always so excited to inspect all the goodies I bring home from my jaunts.  They are right up in my business with each package I unwrap.  So many interesting smells.....

Things like flashlight lenses are the things I buy that fascinate my Mom, she is very amused by the odd ball things I find and then later, delighted with resulting art.  My Mom, my biggest fan.
An unusual flower frog with stabilizers on the sides to hold the frog in place inside the vase.   That's an improvement in design!
Vintage silver spoon featuring a woman's image on the handle.  It has a small hole drilled into the handle that will dictate the design and how the spoon is used.  No problem!  I found it in a wooden basket with about a 100 other pieces of silverware.  I searched through the basket searching for another piece to match, but she was stag.
I love this post card - my favorite find of the day with tiny angels decorating the holiday tree.  This post card is so perfect I will devote a later blog to it in more detail.
Tiny plates from Occupied Japan in the best -  vibrant,  green  glaze.  There were three in the set, I can't wait to use them for a future project.
I purchased an entire bag of junk beads just to get the vintage peach color glass faceted beads.     I had to have them - milky peach beads that remind me of sherbert in the Summertime.

We finished up the day at 5:00PM.  We had driven 150 miles, had onion burgers ( a first for all of us), made seven shopping stops and met lots of wonderful shop owners and shoppers along the way.  We laughed, teased, shared memories, heartaches, worries, dreams and a girl's day out junking together.

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