Yard Sales and Road Trips

Next Sunday I leave for California…time with family and Father’s Day with my father.  Doug will stay here…Home Alone….hmmm?

When I get back, we are having a yard sale…maybe, possibly.

I believe yard sales are hard work and generally not worth the effort…would much rather give things away.  In fact, I have been known to say “sure you can have that $15 item for a buck…and please take two of these…for free!”.  Doug is the wheeler/dealer – I just want to get rid of the stuff.

The odd thing is we’ve been planning to have a yard sale for about five years now.  It never happens.  I prepare.  I put the date on the calendar.  I remind Doug as it draws near.  And about a week after the date he asks “weren’t we supposed to have a yard sale?”  Well, maybe next summer.

He seems a little more committed this time.  It might actually happen.

I’ve never thought of myself as a collector, but apparently I am.  I weed out my closet regularly.  I whittled down craft projects long ago.  And Doug is knick-knacky enough for both of us.  What I collect are books and dishes and photographs.  Now that I’m going thru them, I don’t think I can part with a single piece.

Just considering the dishes….how many do two people need?  Quite a few actually.  Sometimes I pick a plate based on mood alone.  And of course, they must suit the occasion and co-ordinate with color schemes.  And having enough of one type to feed the large crowd who could potentially come to dinner is important.

I found these at a thrift shop.  There are only five of them but they make me smile, especially the sunflower….

thrift shop special

These were my maternal grandmother’s “every day” dishes.  I am forever, sentimentally attached.  I poured out my childhood/teenage dreams over them as Nany listened.  Obviously, I can’t let them go.  They know too much.

These were my paternal grandmother’s good china… which belonged to her mother before that.  A conservative guess puts them at least 100 years old!  Service for 16, I use these most often for family gatherings.  I try to channel my cheery Grandma Vera when I use them.  I need all the cheery I can get whilst stuffing my large gang into my small diningroom.

And by the way, this set of china was in the truck when we rolled off the highway in Alaska a lifetime ago. I packed each piece individually.  We didn’t lose any.  Nor on the trip back to Oregon years later.  If you ever need help packing fragile items, call me.



Now these…I can let go of.  Doug bought them at the Dollar Store because he can’t pass up a bargain.  He says they’re cheap and if they get broken it won’t matter.  I’m really glad he feels that way because, you know, accidents happen…….oops!

These are the ones we use almost every day…a gift from my parents.  Everything tastes better on red, white and blue…..

……….and there are these, and……………………….these.


And now I’m embarrassed… this is only about half.  How did this happen?  I wonder if there are others with a dish fetish?  So now, of course, I can’t even begin to talk about my books and photos.

What I’ve got to do is get back to sorting and packing and labeling and possibly hiding some things.  It is imperative.  Doug will have the house to himself for 8 days.  I’m more concerned about that than the yard sale.  He’s been known to “mingle” stuff which means I’ll never find it again.

He does other things too.  Once, in the early years he painted our bedroom orange with barn red trim around the windows and doors.

….  I don’t even know what to say about that……… I’m pretty sure he was trying to do something nice tho.

7 thoughts on “Yard Sales and Road Trips

  1. Dishes – what’s not to love? They are all about food and family times; laughter and memories, talking and gathering around the table. I recently got rid of two sets of dishes, too. And our “good” china is going to our son and his wife as soon as they move into their new house. That leaves me with two sets, both colorful stoneware that will stand up to tough use. I will not come to your garage sale, because I would be very tempted…Your plates are beautiful – there are worse things to collect, for sure. Enjoy them without guilt.


  2. Maureen says it well. It’s not the dishes themselves so much as what they represent in the life of a family. The last pattern pictured looks like the set my parents had at their lake home. I don’t recall its name, but we salvaged just the mugs for our cabin, and I love them. I recall all the different pieces in each place setting had a different country scene. I like garage sales or yard sales for clearing out the debris in basements and attics, but I’m not very good at weaning myself from my household belongings! Good luck to you this time.


    1. Those dishes are called Friendly Village, I believe. Each dinner plate is a different scene. That poor set has taken a beating over the years, so only have bits and pieces, but love them still. Yes, it is the memories and amazing that a set of dishes can hold so many!


      1. That’s it: “Friendly Village” — now that I see the name I remember it. I associate that set with so many happy family meals shared with my parents in their lakeside home when they were still alive, so the few mugs that remain are treasures I could never part with.


  3. Love love love the pictures…I am addicted to dishes…and fabric…and books…and journals 🙂
    The “Friendly Village” plates are my favorite.
    I don’t know what area of California you are visiting, but I hope you encounter fantastic weather and no traffic, although that may be too much to ask for!
    I live near the coast between Los Angeles and Santa Barbara…the weather has been perfect.
    Hope your trip is, too 🙂
    Bee well!


    1. Sounds like we have the same addictions:) I had to wean myself off fabric tho – – was getting ridiculous! Glad to hear you’ve got good weather. I’ll be in the Auburn-Grass Valley area. It’s usually so pretty there. Thanks for the good wishes – – looking forward to the trip.


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