Thursday, November 5, 2015


My husband and I recently discovered our new favorite used book store: McKay Used Books in Manassas, Virginia. As we were getting acclimated to the area, he just searched for used book stores while looking up thrift stores near us. But when we pulled up to this place, we were floored! It's huge! And not only does it have rows upon rows of used books, it also has board games, video games, and music as well. Needless to say, we've already been back a second time and plan to make a habit of it.

I picked up Wildwood by Colin Meloy on our second time around. I didn't know anything about it, but the description on the back of the book sold me almost immediately.

"Prue McKeel's life is ordinary. That is, until her brother is abducted by a murder of crows and taken to the Impassable Wilderness, a dense, tangled forest on the edge of Portland. No one's ever gone in - or at least returned to tell of it.
   So begins an adventure that will take Prue and her friend Curtis deep into the Impassable Wilderness. There they uncover a secret world in the midst of violent upheaval - a world full of warring creatures, peaceable mystics, and powerful figures with the darkest intentions. And what begins as a rescue mission becomes something much greater as the two friends find themselves entwined in a struggle for the very freedom of this wilderness. A wilderness the locals call Wildwood."

I just love fantastical adventures - the description sort of reminded me of The Chronicles of Narnia - and the illustrations were beautiful!

And the uncut pages are a cute little detail.

I totally forgot to take photos of the inside of the book until I was just writing up this post, so excuse the major change in lighting! It works for me though, because I'm always reading by lamplight anyway ;)

The illustrations within the book were a lovely surprise! I was definitely a little obsessed with them. They're so cute! (And they're by Carson Ellis)

I recently finished the book, and while it wasn't my favorite I definitely enjoyed it! Absolutely worth the price I paid for it. Did I mention everything is priced very reasonably in this store?

Happy Thrifting!

Friday, October 16, 2015

My Wall: Part 2 & 3

Once upon a time, I wrote up a post about my wall. And since that post, we've moved a few times. I've since set up my wall twice - two different ways.

If you're just catching up now, I'll do a little recap:

I have a collection of hanging wall decorations that I like to hang all together. I just love the look of having a collage of semi-matching things up on the wall. A lot of these end up being owls or nautical themed, but it can really be anything as long as it looks nice together.

This is the current setup of my wall. It's in our living room above the couch. I stopped hanging stuff as it reached a closed shape. I have more items that I might add eventually, but I will only do so if it doesn't look unfinished at the end. That was what I didn't like about the original spot - it never looked finished.

This was at one of our previous apartments - in the bedroom. (Low quality photo, taken on my iPod touch.) I noticed this open wall space above the closet doors and thought it would be perfect for my decorations. I love how it turned out up there. As you can see I have a lot more of them hanging in this space.

So far, in each apartment I've set up my stuff in a different spot. First the den, then the bedroom, and now the living room. Who knows where it'll be once we have a house of our own!

I normally mention where everything was from, but I have smaller posts for the individual items, some of which I've posted and some I have yet to photograph. Everything was thrifted, though!

Happy Thrifting!

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Rainy Weekend

A couple weekends ago, we got up early on a rainy day and hit some thrift stores. We grabbed a few things that day, including these two from Goodwill. (I'll make a separate post about the other items later.)

And when the cashier rang me up, it was less than expected - an even bigger win!

We used to live near Lake Tahoe, so I thought this mug was appropriate. It's such a beautiful area!

I also love the speckled inside of the mug. It's the perfect size for a small cup of tea or coffee. 

I don't remember the last time I bought a new book. I scanned the books, not expecting to find anything, but I spotted this one right before we left that section. I was intrigued, so I texted my friend Michallynn to check the rating of it on Goodreads (I don't have a smartphone). I usually just buy ones that pique my interest, but this one was a little more than I usually spend so I wanted to make sure it had a good rating (it did).

I also didn't want to fall victim to judging a book by its cover - look at that artwork!! I love it. Hopefully I love the book as much once I pick it up to read.

Happy Thrifting!

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

A Weekend of Travel

I know, it's been forever! I've been busy with lots of things - one of which has been a cross-country move. We are now living in Northern Virginia! We left Northern California at the end of Feb/beginning of March and drove all the way south through Texas and New Orleans and back north to our home state of Pennsylvania. We stayed there for a few months and then moved into our new place at the beginning of June. Our belongings arrived here at our new place in the beginning of July and we are finally (mostly) unpacked. Which means it's safe to say we have started exploring some local thrift/antique stores and estate sales. But before I get into those, I'll tell you about our most recent finds.

A couple weeks ago, my husband and I went on an anniversary trip back to Pennsylvania. We spent the whole weekend on the road - visiting friends and family, and going to our favorite amusement park. Of course we had time to fit in a stop at Black Diamond, in Frackville, PA. We used to visit this antique store years ago when we still lived closer to home. It's been a while and a lot has changed so we were happy to check it out again.

I always check the prices of these Pyrex dishes, and I was pleasantly surprised to see a price on this pair that I would normally see for just one dish. They're a bit bigger than we normally need, but it was too hard to pass up. They're in perfect condition and both have their lids, which is rare.

Nearing the end of our 4 hour drive back to Virginia, we noticed there was a Salvation Army on our route. It's a little out of our way on a normal day so we decided to stop out of convenience. We're glad we did, because it wasn't the best Salvation Army location (and we probably won't be returning). However, we did find one thing while we were browsing. This cute crossword mug! It was still in its box, never even used. It comes with a pencil for filling in the blanks and the clues are on the side of the box. The top of the mug says, "With a crossword, we're challenging ourselves to create order out of chaos. - Will Shortz"

Just a few new things to add to our kitchenware! (Did I mention the movers broke about 10 dishes??)

Happy Thrifting!

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Puzzle Feature #3

It's been a while since I showed you some thrifted (and completed) puzzles!

A while back we picked up a box full of assorted animal puzzles. Here's the first bunch that we completed.

My usual OCD setup.

This one took a whiiiile. We usually stick to 500 pieces, but this one was 1000.

Just some little animal cuties to brighten your day, thanks for stopping by!

Happy Thrifting!

Friday, January 30, 2015

Suitcase Score

A while back, Ed suggested the idea of checking out the Goodwill Outlet store. We had never gone to one before and were willing test a new experience. After reading online reviews, we grabbed some gloves and hand sanitizer and were on our way.

The outlet was set up as rows of bins into which employees just tossed all of the donated items. There was a pricing guide on the wall and you basically just had to dive in (hence the gloves and sanitizer). A lot of it was junk, and it was hard to sort through since many things were broken and most people didn't care about personal space. The most interesting part was when they wheeled out a bin of clothing. They brought out the bin that was covered with a sheet and wheeled it to its spot, between two lines of people waiting for it. Then an employee took the sheet off and everyone just went crazy scavenging, taking anything and everything. It was quite like a scene on the Discovery channel.

Despite all this strange activity, we both ended up finding a suitcase each! Both were in good condition and were decently priced. After taking them up to the register to pay, she rang them each up as half price! That was a totally unexpected but welcomed surprise.

We've used them a few times already - they're perfect for weekend trips!

The blue one is mine (did you guess that?) It still had a return address stuck to the inside!
I already had one of those incidents where I thought it was closed all the way, picked it up, and all my clothing fell out (classic movie blunder). It was so funny I couldn't even be mad!

The brown one is Ed's. Someone wrote "TOP" in marker on the outside of his (on the top of course). We think it's funny since it's not that hard to decipher which way is up.

I haven't had much time to take new blog photos since we're in between moving right now, but hopefully I'll get back into the habit soon.

Happy Thrifting!