Thrifty Giving: Birthdays & Housewarming

29 Jul

Today I have more thrifted gifts to share. Last weekend we attended a housewarming party for my friends Jose and Lupe who just moved into an adorable yellow house in Oakland. In addition to celebrating a housewarming we also celebrated Jose’s birthday, so I wanted to arrive with twice the gifts to have all the occasions covered.

First, Jose’s birthday. What do you get the renaissance man who has it all? Vintage books, of course.

A book called Planet Earth, which is meant to be a companion guide to the PBS television series that aired in 1986, is filled with photos and information that was dense enough to be a stand alone work without the series.

The second book was a thick drawing guide from 1950. Jose is an amazing artist and I knew he’d appreciate it. Both of these books happened to be five cents each during a summer sale at my favorite thrift store.

┬áThe housewarming gifts were both items that were meant to be shared with others. First, a vintage cheese board with a ceramic dish in the center and a wooden rim for holding crackers. Jose and Lupe are excellent hosts who’ve opened their home up to several of us when we visited the Bay Area.

And what better way for the two of them to celebrate moving into a new home than by toasting each other with champagne out of vintage goblets.

Aren’t they beautiful?

My mother’s birthday just happens to be in the middle of August so I found her some vintage birthday goodies, too.

Stefanie actually came across this book first and, knowing my family history, passed it my way. The area in which we live was founded by many Swedes (my family included) and this book was published locally. My parents love reading about our heritage.

As a teenager my mom spent many a summer stretched out on a towel and hoping to get a good tan while reading everything by Ian Fleming so naturally I couldn’t pass up this first edition James Bond. Thanks to a thrift store this book really did live twice.

When August rolls around my mind starts thinking and preparing for the holidays. I have a small thrifted stash of things to give away at Christmas time but now is really when I need to start shopping to be sure I have all the gifts covered by December. Anyone else planning on giving thrifted presents for the holidays? For that matter, does anybody else start thinking of Christmas plans in August?

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4 Responses to “Thrifty Giving: Birthdays & Housewarming”

  1. WinterLightHomestead July 30, 2012 at 2:03 pm #

    Well, I do handmade Christmas, so I’m already cranking up my own personal elven sweatshop. It’s an explosion of sequins, yarn, felt, embroidery floss, Polyfil, and patchwork squares around here these days. My graph paper spiral notebook where I design my patterns is full of a dozen new scribbles.

    The county fair is at the end of August. I’m hoping that by getting a jump on Christmas gift crafting I can enter several items into competition at the fair. It’s free to enter, and last year I brought home ribbons and a check for $42. Yes, 42! ;) That fair money helps comp the cost of mailing the gifts.

    BTW, I’ve got a stack of vintage books on the counter, gradually climbing higher, that are designated for Christmas gift recipients this year. For example, my friend who is obsessed with the moon is getting a pre-Apollo missions moon atlas that’s filled with gorgeous photographs and maps.

    • Carrie Anne July 30, 2012 at 3:22 pm #

      That atlas sounds amazing! Our fair is already over but my mom convinced me to enter some photography for next year. I may not get a ribbon or a check but it’s worth a free fair ticket so I may as well!

      • WinterLightHomestead July 30, 2012 at 4:29 pm #

        Last year was the first time I ever entered photography into the fair. And, one of my photographs took Best in Show! I FREAKED! Purple ribbon and $15! HOLY COW!!! I was EUPHORIC!

        One friend in particular had encouraged me all year long to be braver with my photography. I gave her a print of the photograph and my purple Best in Show ribbon as her Christmas gift last year. I wanted to give her a meaningful gift because of how much she means to me.

  2. Jose August 6, 2012 at 10:18 pm #

    LOVED the gifts!!!

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