The Boy often comments when we go yard sale-ing that I always seem to find something while he usually just winds up spending a pleasant morning of wandering around and having people fawn over our dog. In summers past, I have to say he’s kind of right. This year, however, we seem to be pretty even in terms of garage sale finds.
This past weekend, however, we both outdid ourselves. (I credit the raininess as much as good luck: people really don’t seem to have the energy to haggle when it’s rainy. Not complaining!) The Boy found a mint-condition (if somewhat mediocre quality) toolbox — the perfect solution for his workshop bench which has long been cluttered with non-tool Stuffs in need of organizing — as well as a full-on extension ladder, for way less than he’d expected to pay. He also scored some gear for his parents on a wicked deal.
What about me? I’d spied a cat tree (in much, much better condition than the one we had) listed at $5 which I thought very reasonable, but which was offered to us for $2 before I could even ask the price. Sold!
It’s been quite the popular item with the kittens.
I also found a second cake carrier in the same style as my current one (but this time in Christmas-y colours!) as well as a $2 food processor to replace the one whose grating blade support I’d snapped. (The Boy had dutifully epoxied it back together for me, but I couldn’t muster up the courage to try it with anything harder than cucumber, lest it explode again in plasticky shards.) This kitchen robit is an oldschool cuisinart and aside from the reassuring weight of every component (the heavy metal grating disks, the enormously heavy motor, even the plastic of the cover) I have to say, it works awesome. I heart it already.
But. While these finds were… nice, I wouldn’t exactly consider them The Score Of The Summer. Why then my great excitement? One word: jars. Not just any jars, though. Although my canning supplies include what The Boy politely refers to as “Holy crap a lot jars”, I never seem to have enough half-pint jars. Being a household of two, the standard half-pint — so often relegated to jam-making — is actually my preferred size for pretty much everything. Given how rarely I seem to find them in garage sales, I’m not the only one.
At one house, however, beneath a table covered in stuff I had no interest in, I spied not one, not two, but three boxes, chock full of jars! Half-pint canning jars! AND! vintage Gem jars! Three whole boxes! For $10!
(If you don’t know, Gem jars are one of the old school canning standards. They involved a jar, a separate rubber ring seal, a glass lid, and then a thick metal screw band. The brands that use this style include Crown, Corona, and Jewel. While not considered safe for actual canning purposes these days, the jars are still super-pretty and romantical-like, and lots of folk like using them for storing dried goods, etc. I am among them.)
I found my first Crown jars a couple summers ago in a yard sale, and promptly took them home and filled them with grains. I have been hoping to find more, ever since. This weekend, my wish came true, in spades. Finally, I could free my staples from the ugly confines of old yoghourt buckets and peanut butter and ovaltine jars! Behold, my revamped pantry!
(Eat your heart out, Karen! Just kidding, that’s kind of mean; I didn’t mean that.)
I’m not totally there yet. I’m still just a couple jars short of having Everything In Pretty Containers (those have been evicted to the Baking Stuffs cupboard), but I get stupidly happy now every time I open this cupboard. Squeee!