The Brigade’s Weekend Adventures

“Whew!” Jabber sighed, “It’s been one of the mostest busiest weekends this year, ‘specially with yard sales!”

Yes, for some reason there have been fewer sales this past summer than normal and the Brocanting Brigade has not found as many treasures as they have in the past.  It is NOT from not looking, I assure you.  However, this weekend was an exception with several Community Sales and so many treasures the van got filled early and we had to do a ‘drop off’ before proceeding.  This is a very good thing!

Saturday morning the Brigade met in a parking lot, more or less centrally located, to begin the day’s adventure. 

But no Cupcake!!  Where oh where was she?  Girlfriend rang her at home.  No answer.  Where could she be?

Jabber’s phone rang and TMWLH said, “Hi, Honey.  I have a Cupcake on the front porch here………”

Jabber, being a ‘wocky’ of very little brain– (Jabberwocky, peoples!, Jabberwocky!—you know, like Winnie the Pooh bear?  A bear of very little brain?…..oh never mind)–

immediately thought, ‘that’s odd’ and immediately inquired of the members of the Brigade in the van, “Did any of you leave a cupcake on the front porch of my house?” whilst considering how very odd it was that one of them HAD left a cupcake and if so, why didn’t she bring cupcakes to the rest of us?

Then she realized TMWLH meant our very own CUPCAKE had gone to Jabber’s house, not the parking lot.

We waited for her and were off…….

Oh!  And she did bring us all cookies, which are almost as good as cupcakes….

Girlfriend—who has a very good, keen eye—found this wonderful witch’s hat and tried it on for the camera.  We aren’t sure she actually could play the part of a witch, but maybe as a costume she could…………


This is Girlfriend’s shopping technique:

1.  Get to the sale early, walking quickly and stealthily ahead of the rest of the Brocanters.

2.  Take a look around to scan the sale—see what is of interest and

3.  Immediately go ‘scarf’ items of interest.  Get them in hand before somebody else gets ‘em. 

4.  If said item is FOR ‘body else, hold onto it and yell across the sale at other body—“Hey!  Jabber!  Didn’t you want XXX??”

5.  Hand to Jabber.  Walk on to find the next treasure.

Rinse and repeat.

Girlfriend is very adept with her technique.  Also very good at finding treasures we’ve placed on our list.



Above, Girlfriend scoping out a sale—in her new, $3 winter coat!  She located it at a sale on Saturday.


So-sew and Girlfriend examining some of the items for sale.

We had a good time, declaring we had SUCH a good time that we’d meet again on Sunday to go to the Green Door Gourmet Fall Festival.

So, we did.

Walking towards the grounds, I spotted this in the distance (and Sosew and Cupcake way ahead of Jabber, too!):


Could it be?  Could it?  Was it a mirage?


It was REAL!  Jabber almost broke into a song and dance—it was the fabled GRILLED CHEESERIE FOOD TRUCK!  She (and I) couldn’t wait to try some!

But first, we had to go through the entry area and scout out the grounds and vendors.

First up, Southern Fried Patinas of which Racer Daughter is co-owner.  Here is their tent:




And here is daughter!


“Sitting down on the job?” Jabber offered, not helpfully.  Of course she’s not!  She’d been working preparing and setting up for WEEKS!  She deserved to sit down a little.

Below, some pictures of the festival booths and activities


image  Face painting for kids


Brocanters found a great table, close to the building with live music.

It was a gorgeous day!

image  Big Crowd!


Neat slide for the kids!


Cupcake makes her way to the Pumpkin hut.



Some squash looked like animals and snakes.  It was impressive.

Beautiful day, great friends, good CHEESERIE sandwich, fun things to see and sample.  We had a good time!


Wedding dresses, Piggys, Exercise, Santa Fish and Stories from the Weird Side

The Brigade was in full force this morning after working out, ready to go find some bargains.  And so off we went, all six of us, chatting and laughing just happy to be together.

We found an excellent sale in a nice clean garage which had some perfect items for some of us. 

Below, the wedding gown and maid of honor dresses we chose for Cupcake. 


This sale had several bridesmaid’s dresses as well as a dress for the mother of the bride, all coordinated.  Alas!  No groom was located at the sale.  Cupcake indicated she really didn’t care for RED all that much, not her color of choice, so we reluctantly left the dresses there.

image  Cupcake secretly wants a groom from Maine.  (Even if she thought her sweatshirt said “Miami” before we enlightened her.)  Yep!  Any nice males from Maine reading this, you may apply.  But you can not have red in your wedding.  Blue is more Cupcake’s color.


This cheery fish Santa tempted us, but since it is almost July, we decided he really didn’t need to come home to celebrate the holidays with us.  It was a tough decision, however.

Because, next we saw a large collection of:



And other items relating to, well, pigs.  One is a feeding dish for a pet.  The dish OINKS!

“Well,” reasoned Jabber, “if you had a pot-bellied piggy you could feed it out of that bowl and it’d be very happy for the company I think.”

What can I say?


Above, Thumper and Vanna seriously consider which pig might be THE pig for them……….

image  Thumper chose THIS one!  And she loves him, yes she does.

Meanwhile, outside, this was going on:


“WHAT?”  hollered Jabber……”That’s Sosew.  Didn’t she get ‘nuf exercise in class this morning?  I, myself, was worn to a frazzle after all of it…….”

(Jabber is generally worn to a frazzle and dripping wet as well after class.  Today being no exception.  Sosew is very energetic.  And not drippy ever.)

image  “There she goes agin’!” Jabber pointed to Sosew as she resumed her exercise.

And so it went.  Let me assure you this sort of nonsense goes on all the time.  Sellers at first look surprised, then began to kid with us, and finally they are laughing as hard as we are.  Turns out sales are a great way to meet new people, find great finds, and laugh.

(Hint here:  ask the seller if he/she has something you are looking for.  Sometimes they do and will bring it out for you to consider.  We asked for a groom today, but the seller informed us she had none available and also no tuxedos, either, which, of course, blew any consideration about a deal.  Gotta’ have the tux.) 

And then we went to eat, as per usual.  It was, after all, Fajita Friday at Cancun and we had to go get our fajitas!

A final lil’ story for all y’all: 

“Why you talkin’ so funny like you be Suthren’ which you are not?” interjected Jabber.

Because I am telling a story about Thumper who IS Suthren’ born and bred.  And she told US a story which was pretty funny:

Her husband was sayin’ somebody was crazy and Thumper and her husband were havin’a disagreement-like discussion. 

“Was he sayin’ THUMPER was crazy?” asked Jabber.

No.  Well, maybe.  Doesn’t matter.  At any rate, Thumper raised each of her palms and made circles with them in the air, sayin’ to him, “LOOKIE HERE!  Anybody who spends BIG money to go to a green field and chase a lil’ white ball all over the place just to hit it into a tiny lil’ ol’ hole….” and with this she gestured making a tiny lil’ circle with her fingers….back to the palms circling in the air……”an’ he does this whether the temperature is 109 degrees or 42 degrees, he does this every week.  Now, THAT is crazy!”

Thumper won the argument, of course.


Plenty of Time


“Huh?” Jabberwocky looked at the picture, perplexed….”What are those large things on your wrists?”

Watches.  We all got matching watches.  Thumper found ‘em.  They are all brand new!  And they don’t work, but we don’t care.  Gives us plenty of time.  Oh, and they were free, to boot!


Thumper got a lime green one for Cupcake, a darker green one for Jabber, a turquoise for Vanna, a lemon yellow for herself!  Oh, and Girlfriend got the brown.  ‘Cause she couldn’t make up her very own mind about which one she wanted. 

These fashion statements say, on the face of the watch, “HELLO SOMEBODY”.  I mean, what more could a girl want?

(You shoulda’ seen the sellers, two little girls about 11 or so.  Jabber saw they were selling jump ropes, so she tried one out, but it wasn’t long enough.  And then Thumper got the watches from their ‘free box’.   I have a feeling the little girls were very happy we were not their grandmothers.  But I digress…….)

The last sale we attended had this guy available for a small fee:


A brief meeting was called, right there on the spot, to determine whether or not this guy would go home with Vanna (for her maid).  Ultimately, he was rejected, left to hang there, alone, waiting for another potential gullible  interested customer.  As we departed the sale, he looked very crestfallen, wistfully gazing out the window, dreaming of his potential exciting life with the unknown maid, but rejected, once again.  Poignant moment, indeed.


At least we had plenty of time!image

Last Saturday’s Sales

We were 7 for a while on Saturday—Seven, 7, SEVEN in the van—which meant some of us were squished in the back seat.


Above:  Cupcake, Thumper and Vanna, squished.

No matter.  We laughed our silly heads off, terrorized a few sales and sellers, and demonstrated our new Prancercise talents.  This because Jabber accidentally hit the Itunes button on her iphone and the one and only song she has loaded is the Bee Gees’ “Stayin’ Alive.”  Some of you readers—I mean you Sis and Twin and California, will recall this well.  With the music, the Brocanters broke into their dance routine. 

“What is a Prancercise?” Jabberwocky inquired.

Well, look at it here.  Then try to envision seven of us, the Lucky 7, prancing around a community sale and you’ll sort of see what I’m talking about:

The above is from Youtube—looked up “Prancercise”

Below, Vanna loads a rustic ladder Sosew bought for her hubby, in the backseat.  This requires explanation:  Sosew bought the ladder because she knew that Hubby would NOT be able to use it, thereby discouraging him from climbing on ladders.   I know, I know.  Hey, we’re women of a ‘certain age’ and we can do what we want!



Above, Girlfriend with her Hat (it WAS ‘hat day’ for us, but only Girlfriend and Jabber wore hats.  The others had to buy them at sales.)  Also Vanna, striking a pose as always.


Take a good look at the hat below—Hat has a pineapple drink, glasses, flowers, everything one needs for a party in a hat ‘cept the liquor.  We can provide that.  (True confessions:  the hat went home with Jabber.  Don’t ask why. 

Okay, ask why.  It will be my hat on the upcoming family vacation.  I know my children will be thrilled.  Not to mention the Grands…….   Look at it this way:  you’ll be able to see me in a crowd.  And lose me.)


Vanna brought her “Damn It” doll with her.  Jabber was periodically hit on the back with the Damn It doll.  Useful instrument with which to take out aggression.  Vanna highly recommends it.  Jabber doesn’t necessarily.


imageGirlfriend shows off a T-shirt which seemed to be appropriate for Cupcake.  It says, “Don’s Driving School.”  This because Cupcake had a lil’ accident a while ago.  Just a suggestion, Cupcake!


This is a young seller—he was running a yard sale with his father and mother.  We were impressed with his prices and wares.  And his sunglasses.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           

Cute little statue.  We often see unique items—this one seems to be missing something.  Like a leg. 


Speaking of missing something:  this seller had a cute bunny for sale, but missing some eyelashes on one eye.  So the seller placed a box of Latisse (which will help one’s eyelashes grow) next to the bunny:


Obviously, problem solved!

A great purchase below!  It was brand new, never opened, $10—a 13 X 10 foot tent standing 7 feet tall.  This for Leader’s daughter.  She requested we look for one on Thursday.  We found it, of course, on Saturday.  It’s beyond bizarre how items appear at sales once we focus our attention on finding them.


Guest Pat had to leave early, and we had to do a ‘drop off’ before we could continue on with our shopping.  We found treasures, but most of all we had a fun time together and, of course, we got our Prancercise workout in, too!

Yard Sale Treasures and Other Interesting Artifacts

“You n’ Cupcake n’ Girlfriend and you scared off  Thumper and Vanna, an’ Sosew, too, din’ you?” Jabberwocky said.

Vanna is out of town on her own separate adventure, Jabber, and Thumper was unable to join us this morning as well as Sosew who is, evidently, going to stay in her NEW home for while.  Her second new home, that is—and we are missing her!  So, yes, just the three of us today.

The first sale was the ‘winner’ for moi, however—and these are what Girlfriend found for me and I purchased:

image  image

A matching pair of French chairs, distressed wood, in beautiful upholstery—for $45 each.  I am lovin’ these!

Then, would you believe, the second set of these!


All  12 of these glasses, The Twelve Days of Christmas, for $5.  The first box I found a few weeks ago for the same price, but that set was missing two of the glasses.  I priced them online—to replace just one, the cost is $25.  They are so unique!  (But evidently not THAT unique since I’ve found two sets.)

image  This hat for a friend who is having a Great Gatsby party.  The hat was $1.


Two hats for moi who is NOT having a Great Gatsby Party.  I just liked the hats.  $1 each.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     

image  A hatbox.  $3.  For hats, of course.

Six plastic bags of gold/clear ornaments with 3 to 4 ornaments in each bag—a total of $4.


“An’ what about ‘other interesting artifacts’?” Jabber wanted to know………….

Well, we saw this unusual mailbox—not sure I’d want to see this greeting me if I were the mail person, though:


And, of course, Girlfriend found this and we had to take a picture for Thumper—I hope it doesn’t frighten her:


It was a beautiful day and we had a great time, as always.

Back by popular request, “What’d find? What’d ya’ get?”

“Popular request?  Who asked?” said Jabber.  “An’ why would anythin’ you did be ‘popular’ anyways?”

Don’t you just love your imagination?  Mine is Jabberwocky and she’s always, forever, putting me in my place.

Okay Jabber, TWO people asked.  For me, that’s popular in my book.  I mean, come on’ gimme’ a break!

Thank you, you Two people.  For asking.  At any rate, if nothing else, it will allow me to put up a blog post.  Which I haven’t done for a few days.  And all my many readers are missing them.

“All your MANY??” said Jabber.  “Who’re you kidding?  You don’t have many.  You’re lucky if you get one or two—and I ‘pose they’re the ones who asked, right?”

I am ignoring Jabber for now.

This morning, Girlfriend (aka Foxy Lady—oh yes, she really is aka that!!!) took off for parts unknown, after workout class of course. 

“Evidently not too unknown, Realtor and Teach showed up as well…….” commented Jabber.

Yes, they did.  Anyway, we went to sales.  These are the treasures:


New, never used!, picnic backpack for our annual Longest Yard Sale Trip complete with dishes, utensils, glasses and napkins AND a place to keep our wine.  $8



25 cents each—nice cups for coffee!


Square baking pan, glass, for $1.50


NEW!  $8  A nice Christmas present for someone!

Tomorrow we hope the other members of the Brocanting Brigade will join us.  It’s always a surprise and a treasure hunt. 


A Garden Tour and Treasures

“What?” asked Jabberwocky, “were you doing snooping around in other people’s gardens?  And they LET you?” she finished incredulously.

Uh oh……..there’s another big word, the kind that Thumper is ascared of.  Thumper seems to have a lot of phobias  errrrr, fears—big words, which always cause her eyes to get large with wonderment, clowns, and, of course, Black Forest Cake.  Of which we found several today.

“You found several Black Forest Cakes today?” asked Jabber, heading to get a plate and fork from the kitchen, and wondering why she didn’t get any and where they were hidden…….

No, no, NO! Jabber, no Black Forest Cakes.   Clowns.  We saw several clowns today………..

But nobody took them home.  Couldn’t.  Thumper had to ride in the van and they are scary (as she let us know).

“Well!” Jabber commented, “Clowns ARE pernicious!”  She paused a moment and added, ‘Uh oh…I shudn’t a said that word!”

Thumper.  Scared of big words.

Clowns of which she was afraid:

image  image


And, of course, Black Forest Cake—we established her fear of this last week.

Girlfriend, below, taking her own sweet time digging out coins to pay the seller at a sale. 


Girlfriend is notorious, I mean, Girlfriend is known to take her own time to pay for items.  Often it is a diversionary clever tactic which allows the seller to come down on his/her price.  I’ve known Girlfriend to get things for free!  (There’s a tip for yard sailing!)  Just today she got a large plastic cake cover (bottom not around) for free.  The seller said, “Oh just take it!” in exasperation

“Quit using all those big words or Thumper will have one of her scared moments again!” Jabber cautioned me.

Okay, Jabber, you’re right.  We found several fun sales but the most funnest was in Cupcake’s neighborhood where the owners had a fantastic, terraced garden—front and back!  After admiring the front yard, one of the owners offered to show us the back and side yards—it was magical!

image  image


Above are pictures of the front yard terracing—colorful, lush, well established now, even though it is just mid-May.  The  frequent rains have encouraged beautiful growth for the flowering plants and greenery.


Above, Cupcake walking up the railroad tie steps, stopping to view some beautiful plantings.  Note the chandelier hanging from a tree in the top of the picture.  Photo below shows how beautifully landscaped the steps are.


image  Landings are formed with stones.

And interesting ‘creatures’ dot the terraced areas:


Purple Calla Lilies waiting to be planted on the hillside.


There are two levels to the deck.  Note that the hillside you see in the picture (below) SLID INTO THEIR HOME when the flood of 2010 occurred.  A large tree began to slide and one of the owners ran to the other side of the house to get out of the way.  The mud slid down all the way to the roof of the house, completely covering the decks and some of the windows.  The sliding tree landed on their roof.  The entire hillside was re-terraced, rebuilt and now is very lush and green.




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The work to rebuild the back and side terraces has been non-stop, but the results are truly beautiful.  I thank the owners for sharing their lovely gardens with us this morning!

And that is one of the most fun things about sales—you never know what you will find nor who you will meet nor what you will see.  People are so very nice and generous, willing to show us their lovely homes, gardens, sometimes artwork and other fun finds we encounter along our weekly trips.

“An’ tell’em the rest of the story ‘bout Thumper!” Jabber reminded me….

Oh yes, I almost forgot:  Thumper momentarily forgot all about clowns and big words and Black Forest Cake—she was a very happy bunny when she saw the flowers!


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