“Gratitude Fall” and a Few Finds

I’m so ready for this year to be over. 2020 has worn me out. Emotionally I feel stretched thin. There’s a quote in J.R.R. Tolkien’s “Lord of the Rings” that keeps popping into my mind:

I am old, Gandalf. I don’t look it, but I am beginning to feel it in my heart of hearts….Why, I feel all thin, sort of stretched, if you know what I mean: like butter that has been scraped over too much bread. That can’t be right. I need a change, or something.

Bilbo Baggins

I think for most of us this has been a year filled with an inordinate amount of stress, anxiety, sadness, loneliness, grief and maybe even fear. We’ve had to adjust and readjust our lives and expectations.

Still, if I am honest with myself, I have so, so much to be grateful for. I think the change I need is to stop focusing on the negatives. Stop focusing on all the stuff I can’t do, the people I can’t see and all the news (and people in the news) that makes me alternately grind my teeth and weep. Instead I need to look at the good, at God, at the people who are helping.

And what am I grateful for? Here’s the short list: for my husband and two daughters (who hold my heart), that so far no one in my immediate or extended family has gotten sick, that our house still stands (despite the wildfires and the transformer that blew in front of our house recently), for friends who bless me beyond measure, for my church community that continues to challenge and nourish me and that even now I am still able to pursue my passion for vintage things.

And speaking of vintage things (which is why you’re here!), the last two days I have found a few at my neighborhood thrift store. Mostly “bread and butter” finds, but one that might be outstanding.

These miniature brass reindeer (from India) will make a cute addition at Christmas time. At a mere two inches tall they would be great hanging on a tree. One Etsy seller is selling a pair for $24.99 plus shipping. Another is selling one for $34.00 with free shipping. Hmmmm.

Not sure yet what I’ll list these for.

I thought this small bone and scrimshaw otter was kinda neat. He’s not signed and he’ll need a bit of research.

Found this in one of the utensil baskets. It’s a mid-century modern brass corkscrew from Italy. In a word…fabulous. Needs a bit of polishing, but I’ll leave that to the new owner.

I’ll list this for $30.

This small brass pedestal bowl from Korea wowed me with its clean lines and funky, almost primitive, decoration. It’s likely from the 1960s/1970s. Wouldn’t mind keeping this for a bit.

Not sure yet what I’ll list this for…possibly $40.

Here’s my mystery item. My wild card. Which could be really, really good or just okay. It’s a carved beaver totem, possibly from the Haida tribe. It’s not made of wood, metal or plastic. It seems to be stone and could be agrillite. If it is agrillite (a type of shale) it has some value. But it’s unsigned and I just don’t have the knowledge to know if it’s the real McCoy or a reproduction in stone composite.

There are a few things that seem to indicate to me that it’s not a reproduction, but I need to be sure so I’ve reached out to an auction house in Canada that specializes in “Inuit & First Nations Art” and offers a free verbal valuation service. Here’s hoping they respond!! Will keep you posted.

I’ll close for now. Hoping you are all finding a few things to be grateful for in this difficult season.



  1. There is so much good in the world! I see it each and every day. Neighbors helping one another, someone holding a door open for another person, someone picking litter up as they walk, mama’s snuggling their babies. Not to mention the goodness of the Father. Rain, beautiful leaves for our enjoyment, nice weather.
    I do look for the good and really try to find the silver lining in yuckiness. One being that with each not so great situation we find ourselves in, we are much smarter (and, hopefully, more compassionate) afterwards. I know that I have gained experiences and life lessons this year that I am most grateful for.
    The beautiful brass bowl would be perfect to gather ‘good’ things. A pretty feather, pinecone, heart shaped stone, old picture of a smiling baby. Anything that makes your heart smile!
    I do think of you and other friends in CA while the fires rage. If you’d like to get away for a bit, I have room here in GA!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hi Shari. Thanks for sharing these beautiful bits of goodness. Such wonderful images. I definitely need to focus more on the good stuff around me.

      And I like your idea for the bowl. I have a collection of little rocks that would look great in it!

      Thanks for your kind invite!! That made me smile.

      Blessings, Karen

      Liked by 1 person

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