Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Vacation's over

My husband had some time off for the last week and a half, so we've been all over the place with the family having fun. This didn't leave me much time to do any blog updating. I've also been having trouble accessing Blogger lately, so when I was somewhere with high speed (We can't get any high speed out here that doesn't cost a small fortune), I took the opportunity to upload all my recent pictures onto this page to edit at a later time (Thanks, Mom!).

Since everything is all whacko for me on here, the order of these finds is a little off as well. I'll just go through them one at a time...

This was all the stuff I picked up on my way to do some grocery shopping. It wasn't even garbage day in the town I passed through, but it was recycling day. I don't know if people thought this stuff was recyclable, or if they just did a big clean up and decided to bring everything to the curb at the same time.

A box full of "Moon Lights". When I first plugged them in nothing happened, but then I noticed a sensor on the box. I covered it with my thumb, and the sensor thought it was dark, so it turned on the lights :) They all work except for one that has a burnt bulb. I'll have to go to the hardware store and find a replacement, which will probably cost about $6. In the meantime, they are in my garden and I love them. They give off a nice soft yellow light, unlike the harsh blue light of the other solar lights I brought home a few weeks ago. I'll try to get a night time picture of them in my garden for my next entry.

Next stop had a few boxes out. This old beat up box says "Noël"...Christmas

Inside were a ton of lights.

Of course, they still worked. They were probably thrown out because they weren't the newer LED lights. What a waste :(

The other box contained a bunch of fake vegetables (some with tags still on), a hen and duck made of straw, and a candle holder. My middle son was thrilled to see all the veggies as he wants to be a chef and open his own restaurant some day...despite the fact that he is the world's pickiest eater and would never eat any of the veggies represented in this box.

Another day I found this pile by the curb. As you can see, they will be moving out soon.

This is my car stuffed full after collecting all that looked good and salvageable.

Here are some of the bags once I dragged them into the house. I love it when people use clear bags. It makes it much easier to see everything hiding inside :)

I'm sure someone can use this baby tub again, it's in excellent condition.

One of the bags contained this complete queen sized bedding set. One duvet cover, 2 pillow shams and a decorative pillow.

A framed french inspirational poster.

This giant human sized Rudolph is awesome, but we don't have the room for him. Plus sitting there on that chair, he has freaked out my husband and I more than once this week with us thinking some stranger was sitting in our dining room. I'll be trying to sell him once Christmas gets closer.

Here is what the clear bags ended up containing...There is a wooden shelf, working Hello Kitty watch, Tigger pen, pencil, some kiddie and adult jewellery (nothing valuable), a nice elephant keychain,  Dora the Explorer and Tinkerbelle change purses for kids, an adult purse, a few reusable kids bags, a halloween tie and bandana, Hannah Montana hairbrush, easter basket, various craft beads, and a few french magazines including a french Twilight fan book.

A black garbage bag contained all these stuffed animals, 4 of them with the tags still on, and the grey gorilla in the front that was still wrapped in plastic.

And a Smith-Corona typewritter

Yet another stop had me find these 2 boxes full of kitchen stuff.

After going through them I ended up with one box full of pots and pans for the second hand store.

This wine glass was wrapped up, but unfortunately didn't survive the dump. It's too bad, the design/logo on it was nice.

Out of the boxes I got a blue folded plastic table cloth (which will be good for when my kids paint), a wine bag, an unused t-shirt from a Relay for Life run, 2 unused aprons from a local bank, and promotional apron from Hunt's Tomato Sauce.

There were also various items like candles (one still wrapped in plastic) and a glass candle holder, a soft cheese cutter, bottle openers, utensils and tray (the can opener still has the $3.99 price tag on it), a plush magnetic Mickey Mouse, an unused cat collar, small sink plug still in the package, some sort of small raviolli maker and some saucers.

Here is my cat Gracie grudgingly modeling the collar

There was also a wooden cheese cutter, but the wood was looking pretty cruddy, so I managed to pop out the ceramic tile/trivet so it can be used again.

There was also a cute vintage pan in good condition, and some BBQ tools. However, I threw the basting brushes out because I don't want to risk donating anything that could be contaminated with raw meat juice.

Last but not least, this table cloth. It seems to be wine themed with scenes of a European city.

My husband was with me when I did my weekly drop off, so he snapped this picture of me putting a box full of stuff into the local donation bin.

I also got a chance to go to my comic/video game guy on the weekend and brought him all the various comics and video game stuff I have collected in the last few months. I managed to make $45... which was quickly depleted by my 2 older boys when they ran up to me waving some second hand video games they wanted. Easy come, easy go!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Under cover of darkness

This weekend hubby, the kids, and I broke out the croquet game and tried it out. It was actually fun, it reminded me a bit of mini golf, except instead of getting the balls in a hole, you just had to put them through the pickets. It was really easy for my kids to understand and play as well. My 7 year old ended up kicking all of our butts. His aim was great. I, however, came in last. Boo! LOL

This weekend I came across a pile of what were clearly books in white kitchen catcher garbage bags. They were right beside the garbage can and not even in the recycling bin right beside it. I jumped out of the car and grabbed all of the bags.

I peeked inside the bags once I got them loaded into the car and they were a set of encyclopedias from 1953. My husband has always wanted a set of encyclopedias, and he loves reading old books, so I guess I killed 2 birds with one stone with this find. 

Flipping through the first book, I also found a page of unused Library Research Service stamps that are/were good for 10 years. Doing some googling, I found out that back before the internet (yes, such a time did once exist!), you could write to the Encyclopedia Britanica researchers with a question and include one of the stamps. They would then research your question for you and mail you back their findings.

On Sunday, someone down our road was having a garage sale, so I stopped by to take a look at what they had for sale, but nothing really interested me...just a bunch of old chairs, old french books, and various kitchen knicknacks.

Later that evening, I happened to pass by their place again, and noticed 3 garbage bags by the road, a broken fan, and the frame to a bicycle. It was 3 days before garbage day, so this told me they took the weekend to clean out some stuff. I went back home, but couldn't stop thinking that there was probably something good in the bags.

It had rained most of the day, but it was getting dark, and there was a break in the rain, so my husband convinced me to go check it out. When I peeked into a bag at the curb, I saw electronics, so once again, I grabbed everything to check out at home.

Here is all the stuff I found inside...

Lots of baby stuff, Christmas stuff, and a jacket that went straight into the washer

As you can see, there was nothing wrong with any of it, I don't know why it had to go in the trash...

The jacket turned out to be a down filled vest from Mountain Equipment Co-op which I think is a relatively expensive brand

The Christmas stuff was 4 stockings. I didn't want to melt them in the dryer, so I hung them on my shower curtain hooks to dry along with a reusable bag that was also in the bags.

The electronics turned out to be a DVD / VCR combo

and an HP scanner with all the cords, software, and even a negative scanner included

Also in one of the bags was a plastic crucifix. Seems like I come across some kind of religious icon in almost every haul now.

I'm not sure why they decided to throw all this stuff out instead of trying to sell it at their garage sale. It certainly wasn't all there when I had gone to look earlier in the day.

I went out again on Monday night, but I couldn't relax during the run. My kids have been driving me crazy with their fighting lately, and it's gotten my anxiety and heart palpitations going again. Any time I saw something interesting, I could feel my anxiety going up, and I somehow talked myself out of stopping the car to look. It was still pretty light outside, so I also thought too much about people looking at and watching me. I've got to wait until it gets dark again to go out so people don't notice me as much.

I did spot a DVD player, but instead of taking it for the second hand store, I left it for someone else to find. At least the people didn't put it in their garbage pile, but instead put it off to the side a bit on top of a cardboard box so that it was easily visible. Hopefully someone ended up taking it.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Fair trade

Out on another adventure, I came across yet another mirror. It was huge and was in good shape. I knew my friend was looking for a wooden mirror for her bathroom that she was renovating, so I took a chance and loaded it into the car. It took up almost all the room in my car so I decided to drive it straight over to her place as I was going through my route.

On the way to her place, I also picked up an older hanging lamp. It's kind of ugly, with an oiled brass look to it. It was probably really popular in the late 70's - early 80's. The overall design isn't too bad though, and I'm sure with a nice paint job, maybe in white, someone might enjoy it as a modern shabby-chic looking lamp.

Pile number 2 had this old washboard hiding between the bags with a pair of old ski poles. I checked the bags, but they were just garbage. The washboard is quite dirty and dusty, but it should clean up just fine. I love the look of these. I have another glass one and a small metal one as decorations in my bathroom.

At my friends house we unloaded the giant mirror and she asked what I wanted for it. At first I said 10$ but then I felt bad for asking because I know she has given me a few things I have needed before, so I said "Just take it". She remembered that she was going to dig me up one of her tree's seedlings and when we got that into my car I said "There you go a mirror for a tree, sounds fair to me." :)

You can see how big it is by the floor tiles, if those are 12 inch tiles, then the mirror is about 4 1/2 feet wide by about 3 1/2 feet tall

and here is my new tree! Neither my friend or myself know what kind of tree it is, but in the spring it has huge grape-like clusters of fragrant white flowers that the bees and butterflies go crazy for. It's a really beautiful tree and I hope this one starts flowering soon!

On the way home I came across my third Christmas tree. This one looked really realistic and bushy, but I couldn't find the feet for it anywhere in the pile. I grabbed it anyways because it looked so nice. As I was driving I was wondering what I was going to do with it, or if I would be able to find a new stand for it, when I got an idea....

This winter the juniper tree that I had at the corner of my house died. I don't know what happened to it as it had survived two winters before, but this winter it just turned brown. I thought I saw some green coming back in the spring, and tried to give it a chance to come back, but it just wouldn't. It was one of my favourite trees, so I was quite upset at losing it.

These days people are doing fake plastic grass, so I thought, why don't I do a fake plastic tree? Here is my poor brown dead tree...

and here is the spot with the tree removed and the Christmas tree put in it's place.

I don't think it looks too bad! My husband didn't even notice when he came home, and when I led him back outside and asked him if he noticed anything different, it still took him forever to even notice. So, I'll be keeping it planted and we'll see what happens.

The next day I went out grocery shopping with the kids and saw a garbage pile out on a small country road when it wasn't garbage day. There was a box with a bunch of "junk", and a garbage bag on top of a garbage can with some clothing hanging out of it.

Here is all the stuff sorted

There is a stack of computer games, including a Windows 98 Disk, various small knicknacks that will go to the second hand store such as a candle holder, a keychain digital suduko game, mouse pad, calculator, small picture frames, flashlight, shot glass, lanyard, a first aid kit, 2 Pepsi hacky sacks, highlighters and a glass photo frame which had a participation certificate in it with the dumpers name on it.

These were the nicer items...

The item with Mary on it has a prayer on the back of it

I thought the sunglasses would have been horribly scratched up, but there was only one tiny, fine line across the top of one of the lenses, it wasn't even noticeable or in view when the glasses were put on.

There was also some Playstation stuff that I'll be able to sell to the guy who buys my comics

This was the clothing before...

and now it's all washed, folded and ready for the second hand store.

Today, driving around with the kids, I found yet another treasure sitting by the curb...A croquet set!

The bag was a bit dusty and has some spider webs across it so I didn't know what to expect inside...

Brand new, never used! I've never played croquet, but maybe this summer I'll start!