some seriously sweet deals -part 1

brandon and i have ventured into the world of garage sale-ing. but not just any garage sales...estate sales. we hit up our second sale this past weekend and now our garage makes us look like we should be on the show Hoarders. 
i have always enjoyed scoring a good deal. it's definitely in my blood and my thrifty mama has taught me well. she scours the ads for sales, looks for clearance, stocks up on coupons and never buys anything full price. there is definitely something exhilarating about saving loads of money when purchasing an item.

enter estate sales.the two that we found were in a home of an elderly person who had died and his/her children were trying to get rid of everything in the home, usually at a very fair price. although i am no estate sale connoisseur, i have a feeling that most estate sales are of similar circumstance. elderly people who have either died or need to leave their home to be better cared for elsewhere. and from our experience, senior citizens have some pretty awesome things in their home! i have a new found interest for antiques and vintage items....especially when i can find them on the cheap. makes my heart flutter:) i guess you could say i have jumped on the "vintage" bandwagon...let's face it, old is the "new" new. (does that make sense?!)

the estate sale from this past weekend was a little different. it was an auction estate sale....which is even cooler. sunday morning, i looked up "estate sales" on craigslist and this auction sale was the only one that came up for that day. it happened to be right around the corner from my parent's house and directly across the street from my elementary school. i'm sure i have driven past  it millions of times. but today, i got to go in.  van metre acution company, based out of marshalltown, iowa, came and auctioned off TONS of stuff. and when i say "stuff", i mean STUFF. these people were some serious collectors. i should have taken pictures...there are no words to describe. and the funny part is, the auction company had already had two previous auctions for all the other things from this home. two other auctions!?! we had walked into the "leftovers"....but those leftovers were pretty sweet.

we ended up buying so many things that i will post on this multiple times!  but for starters, here is a few of the gems that we walked away with:

some cute apothecary jars for $1 total. they are so versatile and can dress up anything. any suggestions on what i should put in them?

a desk globe for $1. my brother had one of these in his room and i remember playing with it a lot as a kid. i have seen some cool things other people have done with them (like paint them with black chalkboard paint), but i may keep mine "as is" for now.

a box of various sizes of blue ball mason jars for $7. 18 jars total and all with original lids. um, these babies are in high demand right now! i have seen many different prices around town, and personally purchased some in the past. except i paid $12 for only three jars. i am still debating if i should sell them or keep them....
side story: a cute, old man at the auction saw us carrying them to the car and said, "looks like someone is going to make some jam!" ....ahh! i wanted to squeeze him:) but he did make a good point. i could always do some canning in my free time. i now have the supplies!

a mini Jaymar piano for $1.  this ended up in our car without me knowing:) brandon saw it and put in a bid right away. i'd like to think he bought it for peyton, but he seems to be enjoying it just as much, if not more than peyton. i am all for music education, but this toy will soon be living in the basement, with all of it's other music making, obnoxious friends:)

a turquoise serving dish for $1. this could be used as a serving plate for food, part of decorative center piece or even mounted on the wall as part of a collage. i have currently placed it on the console table (another auction find) as a catch all plate for keys, wallets or loose change. i love that color and you can't beat that price.

a patio set for $20. crazytown! brandon and i saw this at the house and jokingly said, "hey, maybe we can bid on that..." later in the afternoon, i went to pick up peyton from my parent's house and brandon called from the auction and said, "i got everything on the deck for twenty bucks!". at this point, it was hilarious, because we had bought so many big pieces, we would need a u-haul to get everything home. five car loads later, everything was home (thanks to my dad for his giant SUV).
the great thing is, we have been talking about getting a patio set for quite a while. this was impeccable timing for upcoming summer season. plus, there was no way we could spend $500 on a new set. there are four chairs and a chaise lounge chair, (all with outdoor cushions), a small side table, a large round table and an umbrella with LED lights for some "mood" lighting at night.

and that's just a few things:) stay tuned for my next post. yes, we got a little carried away, but it was fun feeling like we were on an episode of Storage Wars (definitely watch that show...is on A &E, i think) and we couldn't pass up some of the things that were for sale. even if we didn't buy anything, an auction is an experience in and of itself. there's a constant adrenaline rush and you have to be quick on your feet (thank goodness for brandon...i am way too much of a people pleaser to bid against anyone).

brandon and i have had a blast at these sales, finding bargains and poking around in other people's things....this may be our new hobby. just call us estate sale enthusiasts:)

to all you (dare i say "old") older generation folks: do any of these vintage items look familiar? or are these items a generation beyond you? do you think i have anything that has any value? (aka, i would hate to be letting my toddler pound on a thousand dollar miniature piano.) i need some answers, all you baby boomers!


  1. What fun! You know how I love a good deal. Glad you are enjoying finding such good bargains. I don't remember too many of those things. Maybe they were more from your grandma's generation. Great finds, though! Can't wait to see updates on their uses.

  2. Boy you two sure hit the jackpot on Sunday! Glad to see all the pics and I can't wait to hear Peyton's first piano concert!


    OK, I'm kidding.

    Well sort of.

    I had no idea the patio set would be so nice. Seriously!!! You guys hit the jackpot. I am starting to get jealous :)

  4. That is so awesome, I want some good stuff!! Those prices are incredible. For the a-jars, you could go with the traditional fruit look with fake lemons or something fun, or craft stuff, buttons, vintage jewelty would be fun.. but you'd want to wear that ;), look online and I bet there are millions of ideas!

    I love the mason jars too, I used those for cookie ingredients for Christmas gifts! I think I posted some on our blog about it. Even to be used as lemonade/punch glasses for a party is a fun idea I've seen with those jars too.

    It's awesome you got all that for such good prices, you're great bargain hunters!! :)

  5. Holy wow, that's awesome, Maggie! One man's junk is TRULY another man's treasure! :)

    Um...I agree with Rachel, I will be your estate sale buddy while Brandon is gone ;) Then again...we might fight over everything haha! We're more mature than that, right?! ;)

    Anyway...I seriously love EVERYTHING!! And that picture of Peyton is soo cute. You really scored big with the patio set... I'm gonna have to come over and lounge in that chair!!

    You do good job!! :)

  6. You are a girl after my own heart, love you and your "junk." (And by junk, I mean GOLD)

  7. Very impressed! I want in on the next sale too!!!!

  8. Don't forget to check www.estatesales.net. I just started stalking this site last weekend.