Monday, November 17, 2008

A Nifty Thrifty Christmas...

(I stole the "nifty thrify" part of my title from a post my daughter, Michelle, wrote on her private family blog recently.)

I thought I'd share some recent Goodwill thrift shopping fun. And then I'll try to quit talking about Goodwill for a while. There are other things I think about and do, after all.

Michelle is my Goodwill shopping buddy (and a fine one she is; she is a blast to do things with and keeps me laughing pretty hard), and on our recent visits, we've mostly focused on looking at the Christmas stuff. I don't know if all Goodwill stores do this or not, but ours saves up all of the Christmas items that are donated throughout the year, and after Halloween, they begin gradually putting it on the shelves-- little by little throughout every day. So, as I mentioned in another post, Michelle and I stop in once a week or so to have a look around. I haven't found a big range of Christmas things in the store, but I have found a few different things that I like.

Above is a small sample of ornaments I've found. I wish the range of colors showed better here because some of them really are beautiful, old colors-- teals, aquas, various shades of pink and blue, several pretty greens. There are ornaments in different shapes and sizes (you can see a few of those on top).

Here are some of the more primary colored ornaments we've found at Goodwill. I have other styles, too, but I don't want to post too many Christmas ornament photos.

I've accumulated a chest full of fun, vintage colored tree ornaments. Mostly they're the "Shiny Brite" brand, which is no longer made. You can tell the ornaments that are old, first, by the box they come in, but new ornaments can be put in old boxes, so you can also, second, look for a certain old patina to them, and there's often a particular type of cracking on the paint, too. (I certainly don't know all that much about this; I'm just going by what I've read!) Some of the ornaments are pretty old, and some of them are not so old, but the tree should be retro-fun this year. I like buying a box of old ornaments for 79 or 99 cents!

(Aimee, email or call me to let me know what ornaments you like. And, yes, Aaron, we will still hang the old, special, traditional family ornaments on the tree. It would be just plain wrong not to.)

A Villeroy and Boch (of Luxembourg) "Holly" porcelain teacup and saucer. I love the feel and look of this cup. Love it. This was a nice find since the line of china is discontinued, and each item of china sells in replacement and vintage stores for more than I'd ever want to pay for them.

This teacup will be my everyday hot drink cup for the holiday season. For coffee, tea, hot chocolate, whatever. While I'm determined not to get too gung-ho with Christmasy stuff since we haven't yet celebrated Thanksgiving, I'll admit that I've been drinking my coffee from the holly cup most mornings while Nat King Cole serenades me with Christmas songs. (I'm just practicing!)

A lighted ceramic Christmas tree. I saw this and walked right by it at first. Then, on the second trip 'round the store, I stopped to actually look at it and was hit with a vague wave of nostalgia. I picked up the tree and looked it over. Yes, it seemed very familiar. Michelle saw the tree and said, "Didn't Gramma Wanda have one of those a long time ago?" Hmmm. I do think that's it!

Well, the ceramic tree is in perfect condition-- like new-- with every little colored bulb intact. I bought the tree, brought it home, set it up, and called my mom. Yes, she had a tree like that ages ago. And her own mother had a similar one. The more I look at this tree, the more I like it. I had it set up and lighted in the dining area for a little bit to try it out, and Roman and Jayden both loved it.

Roman beamed and bounced when he saw it, and said animatedly (while nodding exuberantly, as Roman does), "Oh, Grandma Susy, it's so cute! I just love it. It's pretty.Yes! I like it!"

And Jayden just smiled and pointed and said, over and over again, "Wow!"