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City-fied Self-Sufficiency

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The Dragon, Tamed…

We love going shopping at thrift stores.  You never, ever know what you are going to find.  I just bought two large boxes filled with quart canning jars — mostly Ball, Kerr, and Mason — for $.69 each.  That’s less than half the cheapest price I can find for Ball quart jars!  I have to supply the lids and rings, but that’s no big deal at all.

I have bought loads of fabric — both off the bolt and as things like curtains and dresses — for much, much less than they would have been at a fabric store.  I can’t afford to buy much fabric new.  It’s amazingly expensive now.

My beloved Shay really outdid himself recently, when he and I paid a visit to a local thrift store.

First, as I’m finding TWO pairs of shoes for myself (mind you, I had just been to two large shoe stores and couldn’t find what I needed), Shay showed up with something under his arm and a mischievous smile on his face.  I know that look.  It’s his you-are-never-going-to-believe-what-I-found-that-is-going-to-amaze look.  He pulled the thing out from under his arm.

SERIOUSLY?!? Not just a robot helmet, not just a Transformers helmet, but OPTIMUS PRIME??? How in the world did that stay on the shelf with all these kids in here?!? And for 79 cents!!!

We haven’t seen the Transformers movies, but Bunny-Wan Kenobi loves robots, and so he loves the Transformers.  How can you argue with a robot that can fold itself into a car, truck, or plane?  Pretty neat.  And Optimus Prime is the leader of the “good guys”.  Bunny-Wan Kenobi was just beside himself when Shay presented this find to him.  A rubdown with alcohol, and it was all his.  After a few minutes with it on, he discovered that it still talks, and will distort his voice as well.  He’s very fond of it, to say the least.

Later in our shopping, right after I had found a gorgeous mossy-colored table runner I thought would make a wonderful center panel for Mom’s renaissance fair dress, I looked to my left to see Shay wrestling with a dragon.  The heads of all the shoppers in the area turned when he finally figured out how it went together, and he raised it up to get a good look.

A real, handmade Chinese kite. It even has a hand-carved keel and spool, and the frame is bamboo. It's some 6 feet in wingspan. The tail is a foot wide or more, and at least 6 feet long.

ILoveBunnies loves kites!  But how in the world did this kite end up in a thrift store?  This isn’t just some average kite.  It’s quite special.  It isn’t antique… the beard on the dragon is made of that flexible craft foam sheeting you can get.  But still!!!  And for $4!

Needless to say, ILoveBunnies was absolutely floored.  This past Sunday, after our Bible study, we took the kite behind the building where we meet to try to fly it.

Unfortunately, the winds were unsteady. There was enough wind to get it up a little, and then it would die down or change direction. Shay managed to get it up just enough for me to take a few pictures. How impressive it looked! It seemed to be struggling to break free... like some giant bird of prey, with a loop of twine around its leg. Struggling, yet looking awesome doing it.

Hopefully, soon we’ll be able to really let it fly.  We did learn one thing — it doesn’t take a lot of wind to get it up.  It just needs to be steady.

Oh — and those shoes?  I have narrow feet.  Like a 3-4A heel (used to be 5A at the front, 7A at the heel!  Not anymore, after years of retail on hard floors!).  And I needed some specific kinds of shoes for wearing in events at the museum.  ILoveBunnies is a junior docent, but I help out as well.  I needed some plain black low-heel pumps, and some low boots.  I could find neither in the shoe stores in a size that would fit me.  I found both at the thrift store.  The boots fit great; the pumps are very slightly short in length, and were only 2A in the heel, but they work well enough.  I have some heel cups I can wear with them, and they stay on my feet just fine.  They aren’t short enough to bother me that much.  I do need to get new taps put on them this week, as I can see a nail head on one.  They’re in very good condition, and they’re Easy Spirits, so they’re worth it!


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2 Responses to “The Dragon, Tamed…”

  1. ladysown says:

    well done. thrift store shopping is just plain fun. :)

    • Miss M says:

      We love thrift stores and flea markets and yard sales! We used to live practically next door to a flea market, but now we’re about a half-hour from one.