Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Great Glebe Finds

As always, Chris and I had a great time at the Great Glebe Garage Sale. I didn't end up finding anything on our list, but we did get some good deals.

Some of the best stuff we saw didn't wind up coming home with us.

a very Magritte door
Chris, always the voice of reason, wouldn't let me drag home this awesome cutout door, nor another set of jumping stilts, even after I talked the seller down to $60 for them. $60 for jumping stilts! They weren't our size and we already have 2 pairs...  still....

But it's not like we went home empty handed.

hauling our loot home

Some of our finds:

awesome old martini shakers - $15 for both

 aluminum frame backpack only $2.50

$4 Furby to add to our growing collection

Friday, May 27, 2011

The Mod Mischief Guide to the Great Glebe Garage Sale

Looks like it’s going rain folks. Best be prepared.

Friends have been asking me about my GGGS strategy, so, inspired by Scrimshaw’s and Zoom’s rules, I figured I should share my advice on how to get the most out of your Great Glebe Garage Sale experience.

1. The GGGS officially starts at 9am.

There’s no point in waking up before 6am to be the first ones there. It doesn’t make sense to arrive before everything is set up and people are far less willing to negotiate with you if you are the first person to stop by their yard. I’m sure that many glebites dislike mornings as much as I do – let them finish their first coffee before you try to convince them to part with a precious family heirloom for $5. The belief that “all the good stuff will be gone” is silly since this is a garage sale and what you think is a great find might not be appealing to anyone else.

An acceptable exception would be if you’re looking for a bike (have you considered getting one from re-cycles instead?) or another highly sought after but hard to find item. But that brings me to my next point.

2. Don’t worry about your shopping list.

I think it’s helpful to have an idea of what you might like to find, so you can devote more time to certain yards that are selling the right sort of item, but if you are too focused on finding a specific thing, you’re likely to miss out on some incredible stuff. So think about what you should look for but don’t stress too much about actually finding it on Saturday.

Some of the items on my wish list this year:
-wooden frames for silk screening
-clocks for parts to use with my painted records
-red leather jacket or vest for a costume I’m working on

3. Bring your wagon.

My little red wagon is my all time favourite GGGS find. A little wagon is perfect for hauling your treasures through the crowded streets. If you don’t have a wagon or shopping cart you can try buying one there! Some people prefer a backpack, but you’re likely to wind up with a hot sweaty back and you can’t fit nearly as much in a pack as you can stack on a wagon. Don’t even think of bringing a car into the residential streets!

4. Pick up the big stuff on the way out.

If you find something great at the beginning of your hunt, pay the seller for it and ask them to hold it for you until you are heading home. I’ve done this every year and no one has ever refused to hold something for me. It helps to write down their address and the seller’s name, especially if you have more than one pick up to do on the way out.

5. Plan a circular route.

I usually start on the west side of Bank and weave my way through all the streets from north to south and then cross over and do the other side of Bank in the opposite direction. The trick is to cover as much ground as possible while avoiding doubling back down the same streets whenever you can. If you have to go down the same street twice, walk on the opposite side of the street the second time.

6. Wear an awesome outfit.

Tight tank top –so you can easily try on clothes without undressing
Shorts – to keep you cool
Utility belt – storage for your cash and camera; way better than carrying a purse
Sandals or comfy boots – based on the forecast, I think I’ll wear boots
Thin jacket – layers are key! You can toss it in the wagon once it starts to really get hot

 Almost, but not quite, the look you want to go for

7. Bring lots of cash, change and your cheque book.

The best negotiating strategy I know is to pull out a bill as if it's all you have left and ask if they'll take it. This won't work if all you have with you is a stack of $20, so be sure to have smaller bills and loonies and twoonies in your pockets. If you talk someone down from a dollar to 25 cents for something, they're not going to want to give you change, so be prepared!

You can see some of the success I've had with these tips here and here.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Painted Records

I've donated a custom painted record to a United Way charity auction. If you've landed on my blog from there, welcome to my little piece of the internet!

You can see more of my painted records and clocks here.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

We're still here

It's a little disappointing that the world didn't end yesterday. I had been looking forward to putting into practice all the skills I've learned from watching every post-apocalyptic movie I can get my hands on.

My recent favourite is Doomsday. It's like the best possible combination of Escape from New York, 28 Days Later, Mad Max (most obviously Thunderdome, but with  lots of Road Warrior elements too) and Omega Man.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Three Years

 Yesterday, Chris and I celebrated the third anniversary of our first date.

photos from Promdemonium 2011 by Lydia Peltz

Since I'm a total dork, I made this little video full of memories from the last three years.

Saturday, May 14, 2011


Chris' mom wants to see more photos of the cat.

So this is Simone, doing her best impersonation of Maru.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

All the way from Dimension X

If you were wondering why I was taking apart Furbys again, it was because I wanted some animatronic eyes for my next big project.

The Furbys I found at Value Village were considerably more complicated than the Baby Furbys I used for Little Al. I love the fact that their eyes move sideways and their ears go up and down - those two features are perfect for what I have planned.

So what is it I'm building?
It's everyone's favourite evil warlord from Dimension X: Krang!

This is just the plasticine model, the real fun (i.e. tricky part) comes next when I need to figure out how to make it into a plaster mold.

Party of Awesome

Last week we threw a party. A party of awesome.
Basically, it was an excuse to test out a bunch of ideas for the Ultimate Party Challenge on Instructables, but since neither Chris nor I really did anything for our birthdays we were overdue for some celebrating.

Having recently organized the den (resolution #1) we were finally able to open up most of the apartment and throw a real party (as in more than 20 people mingling about).

We asked our friends to give us their best or craziest party ideas and this is what we wound up with:
  • Bubbles! While we couldn't pull off a full ballroom, we filled the stairs with bubbles thanks to a bubble machine picked up on clearance at Wal-mart.
  •  Glow-in-the-dark drinks! A little tonic water and some B100 complex vitamins go a long way under the glow of black lights. Full instructable here.

  • Watermelon punch fountain! Unfortunately we left this one to the last minute and it shows, but version 2.0 should be epic.
  •  French onion dip in a bacon bowl! Seriously, everything is better with bacon.

  • Chocolate volcano! Friends gave us their chocolate fountain and we covered the tiers in rice crispy treats and plastic palm trees. The whole thing collapsed into a deliciously gooey mess (marshmallow looses it's structural integrity under the heat of molten chocolate lava flows) but it was glorious while it lasted.
  • Porkamacon! Chris served up a bite-sized version of his original recipe.
  • Hats! Anytime I need to bust out the tickle trunk for a party, I know it's going to be a good time. Our party guests showed up in everything from sombreros to top hats and both ninjas and pirates were seen mingling amongst the party-goers.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Another Furby bites the dust

I swear I don't have anything against stuffed animals, but I'm once again taking apart adorable fluffy creatures.

All in all, not a bad way to spend election night.