Saturday, August 08, 2015

Heart Over Mind

My mind knows that I need to stick with my de-cluttering goal and not be dragging in more stuff to fill the holes I've managed to make in the storage areas.

My heart keeps over-riding my mind and telling me to give a good home to estate sale finds.

I think my heart will always win this debate, drat the luck.

My association with Dixie's has plugged me into their estate sale activities and I've hit more estate sales in the past year than I have in the rest of my life put together.  I've made some really good buys and I've made some really baaaaad impulse buys, but I always console myself with the idea that if I decide I blew it by buying something I absolutely do not need in my life,  I can always (hopefully) re-sell it in the booth.  And, furthermore, even if I sell it for the price I bought it, I'm breaking even and coming out ahead.   That policy has mostly proven successful.  I'm sitting on an item right now that I'm probably going to have to take a loss on, but the total fiasco I made when I purchased it has taught me a valuable lesson and that in itself is a good thing in the long run.  Right?

A few weeks back I went to an estate sale that soured me a bit on the whole concept.  The sale itself was fine and I bought a few very nice things, but the location took me way into the deep woods in an area where I'm not so comfortable being in the first place.  Add to that, the way from the main road to the house was a very long one-lane drive bordered with woody undergrowth and there was no way you were going to make it in or out without having to squeak past someone headed the opposite direction, which meant scraping past God knows what.  I still haven't had the intestinal fortitude to examine my car too closely for scratches.

After that I skipped a few - mostly for location reasons, partly because the preview photos didn't show anything that I couldn't resist.  But this week's sale was in Smithville at the home of a woman I've known since our very early days living in Bastrop.  She is now in her late 80's or early 90's and headed into nursing care, had been living in this house for decades, and was interested in genealogy and history, so I figured this was a sale that I must check into.  Thursday morning I was one of the first in line and it was exactly what I expected to see - rooms full of almost too much to take in.  In addition, the back yard was full, the drive way was full, the porch was full and the crowd was big.  I made several circuits throughout and ended up with just a few things:  a couple of antique books, a couple of commemorative plates for local historical buildings, an old metal license plate frame advertising Bastrop State Park, and a piece of milk glass.  My day was made when I snagged a rare, autographed book for $10.  The book, a study of the paintings of Porfirio Salinas, is routinely offered online anywhere from $75-$225.  I already owned a copy that I managed to find awhile back at Half Price Books marked down to $50 that was in less than stellar condition and now I have a much better copy for a fraction of its value.  That kind of unexpected treasure is an example of why I so love estate sales.

Commemorative plates for the First Methodist Churches of
Smithville and Bastrop

A 1901 book on the life of Queen Victoria
& an autographed  book on Porfirio Salinas

Antique m├ętal license plate frame advertising
Bastrop State Park

I spotted quite a bit of glassware that I would have been happy to turn around and sell and a few odd items that I wouldn't mind having in my own collection, but I wasn't interested in spending opening-day prices, so I left it all behind and figured I would make a check on the last day when prices were slashed to 50%.

So this morning I checked the photos for what was still around on the last day and some of those items of interest were available, so I stumbled out of bed and drove back to Smithville for a second round of scavenging.  I did much more damage to my checkbook today.

I found a large collection of dishes by Steubenville in the Woodfield pattern.  There is a variety of plates, saucers, a sugar bowl and creamer, tea/snack plates, bread plates, cups and a large platter.  I'm not sure what I'm going to do with it but at the bargain basement price of $22.50 for the entire lot, I couldn't resist.

Woodfield dishes
Two china head dolls I spotted on Thursday were still waiting for a good home, so even though I'm not much of a doll collector, I figured I had room in the china cabinet for Charlie Chaplain (complete with cane and bowler hat) and a sweet lady with a crocheted outfit.

Two china head dolls
There was quite a bit of blue carnival glass still there and I had intentions of buying it all, only to discover that the punch bowl that I was really after was damaged with multiple chips out of the rim, so I settled for buying the pitcher and tumbler set.  I sold a set similar that had been in Mother's collection, so this one I feel sure will be in the turnaround and sell category.

Pitcher and tumblers in blue carnival glass
As I was checking out this morning, I mentioned the good buy I had gotten on the Porfirio Salinas book the first day and was asked if I had noticed the Salinas painting in the bedroom.  He didn't know if it was an original or a print, but it was priced low and I might want to take a look.  One of the helpers dashed in to bring it out for me to see.  I wasn't sure at a quick glance in bad light just what it was either, but at $20 it was cheap even for a print.  So I grabbed it, too.

Once home, I took it out in the bright sunlight to study it and I'm fairly sure it's a print on canvas, but it's an old print and even prints of Porfirio Salinas paintings are mostly out of my price range, so I figure I'm ahead in any regard.  Porfirio Salinas, if you don't know, specialized in paintings of bluebonnets and has an association with the Bastrop area.  I've long wanted to have a Salinas print and even though this one is a bit grimy, I'm happy to have it.  I just have to figure out where to put it.

A pasture of bluebonnets  by Porfirio Salinas
This was a nice wrap up to a difficult week.  Between an onslaught of work and a nagging, persistent allergy headache, it's been one of those weeks that I'm better off hibernating at home away from polite society.  I found myself in such an irritable state yesterday at one point that I took a break and wound yarn for a new project - just to get myself in a more tranquil place and less likely to throw things at the cats, who seemed determined all week to find my last nerve and jump on it.

The remainder of the weekend I plan to wash all these dishes I've acquired and work on that new yarn project and maybe indulge myself in watching a sappy rom-com or two.  

Things are looking up.