Sunday, September 30, 2007


Old silver, vintage china, antique furniture… estate sales are terrific. You never know what you will find.

Getting a house ready for a sale, on the other hand, is absolute torture. Especially if the person whose stuff is being sold is alive!

I just spent the week helping my Mom’s cousin organize just such a sale and not only was it very hard work, it was an emotional roller coaster.

Members of Bloglandia first “met” Renita on September 11th when she landed in the emergency room for back pain. While her back is much better, she still is in no shape to lift, pack and haul stuff around.

Having sold her house, that was what needed to be done, however. So she hired estate sale pros Dorothy and Peter to get the job done.

Alas, Renita couldn’t decide what to keep for her new apartment and what to sell. Renita is the first to admit that she hates to get rid of anything. In fact, nearly everything that ever came into the house in 50 years was still somewhere in it!

Barbara to the rescue! Unfortunately, I never got to meet Dorothy, but Peter was amazing. A retired Army officer, he’d lived all over the world and had mastered the art of diplomacy. He saved my life several times when Renita was about to kill me for insisting that she sell something she thought might come in handy one day in the future.

I came away with many treasures, which I promise to share with you. However, having shipped most of them back to Virginia, you will have to be patient.

I tucked this tiny cookbook titled Electric Refrigerator Recipes and Menus into my purse.

It was published in 1927.

*** BLOG DU JOUR ***

Mary Carroll admits that she shouldn't be let loose at an antiques sale. Go to her witty blog Little Red House and you will see why!


Arlene said...

I conduct estate sales for a living now...and the ones who are there (by there, I mean alive :O) Hmmm...that didn't come out right, did it? Well, you know what I mean...they are always the toughest! Sounds like you did well though!

Mary said...

Hi Barbara, thanks for making me your blog du jour!

I can totally sympathize with Renita. After all, I am the lucky recipient of loads of treasures that my parents squirrelled away for years!

Love your little cookbook, and I look forward to seeing your other treasures.

Penny Carlson said...

I love Estate Sales....but luckily I have never had to get one ready. I imagine how hard it must be to convince someone they don't "need" something anymore....Can't wait to see what you ended up with. That is a fun little book!

Love Mary's of my favorites!

Jacki said...

I can so relate to your tale! My mother never got rid of anything. It was a harrowing experience when I had to sell her home and clean it out. It's made me much more conscious of what I keep. Now when I part with something I think, someday my kids will thank me! Jacki

Tracie said...

Dear Barbara,

What happened to Romantic Liiving Magazine? I subscribed and now Romantic Country looks like the same format. I received one issue of Romantic Living and then haven't heard anything else.

I would love any news, since you were the editor at Romantic Living as well as Romantic Country.

Thank you, Tracie

cjan said...

How nice of you to help your Mother's Cousin!! When my mom had my Grandmother's sale, My Grandmother wanted all the names of the people who bought her things so she could go and buy the things back from them!LOL

It is a hard one to help them sell their things. My mom's is going to be a doozie!!

Love your cookbook and looking forward to seeing all the rest of your treasures.


melissa @ the inspired room said...

Looks like you got a fun little book!

euroantiquer said...

Absolutely LOVE, LOVE, LOVE, your Blog! Thanks for sharing your talent and I look forward to your book. If you are ever in Louisville
please look me up!

Rhoda @ Southern Hospitality said...

Oh, I just love estate sales & enjoy them so much! You are right, you never know what you'll find. I have found some great things. There are usually LOTS of others out browsing too, so you have to grab fast. THis one sounds fun!

Thanks so much for putting me on your links! I've enjoyed coming by here & seeing what you are up to. Just found your blog recently.


Susie Q said...

I am SO pleased that you chose Mary as your blog du jour!

Oh poor Renata. I totally sympathize withe her, AND you as well. It is such a difficult thing to do and to help the person is often the worst job! I did this a year ago for my Mother.

I think, that as a military family for 27 years, we learned that things COULD be parted with because we HAD to be that way. Still, it is never easy.

I am sure Renata was so relieved to have you there and for Dorothy's and Peter's assistance. That was invaluable.

The cookbook is a treasure and I look forward to seeing what other sweet things made their way home to you.

Have a great week Barbara!


PAT said...

I love these sales. Yes, I've had to get one ready. The person was deceased, J's mother. It was difficult!

I might be like Renita...if I'm living when this is needed...the family should think about hiring a mediator! They might need one! I have tons of junque. And of course..I might need something or other, one of these never know.


Robyn said...

OH I so love estate sales! LOVE THEM! Thanks for sharing some of your lovely finds!

Barbara said...

What fun you must have had Barbara. Has your Mum started blogging yet?

Sandy B. said...

I loved the little recipe book! I collected recipe books such as yours from the 1920's and 1930's and used the pages to cover the glass panels in fifteen light glass doors, I painted the wood trim areas a deep green and they were attached to the walls of what used to be a hallway now turned walk in pantry in my kitchen. My husband and I designed and built the custom pantry and everyone who comes to our home says it is one of their favorite "rooms". My daughter and I even started a tradition of what we called "Cooking off the Wall" where we would scour the panes and find whole recipes and try them, some were good but take my advice and never ever bake White Water Cake! YUCK!, it stuck to the cake plate and tasted like cement! Thanks for reminding me of this lovely memory!

Tutti Chic said...

Barbara~You were SO GOOD to help out your cousin!!! It's a daunting task isn't it?? Looks like you picked up a treasure with that sweet cookbook! Estate sales are a blast to go to but torturous for the ones having them~yes?! :)

Lori @ Katies Rose Cottage said...

Barbara ~ That looks like tons of work but ohhh so much fun to look through all of the treasures ~

Southern Lady's Vintage said...

I don't know how I found your blog, but you know how that is!! Link from here to there, to there, to there.... Anyway, I am glad that I did! I love any kind of sales! Estate, yard, garage, tag, name it, I love them! I can't wait to see what you bought! By the way, I guess I should introduce myself! Duhhh! Sorry...! I am Barbara at Southern Lady's Vintage. Come see me sometimes!
Barbara said...

Its worth the work of setting up to get first pick!

Ele at abitofpinkheaven said...

I always enjoy visiting you. Keep up the good work!