Grow Your Blog 2014

Hi, we’re Kathy and Deb.  We’re old enough to know better, but that doesn’t stop us from having fun.  We’ve been friends for a long time, and second-hand shopping is our activity of choice.  As an introduction, here is a lightly edited version of our very first post from 2010 (I know!!  We’ve been doing this for four years!).  We pretty much still feel the same way as we did then: we blog because it’s fun!  We’ll probably continue until we run out of things to say (unlikely), stop finding funny stuff (even more unlikely), or we aren’t having fun (hasn’t happened so far).

Howdy No Doody

Kathy: I can’t remember a time when our family didn’t go to garage sales or auctions. I can remember sitting under my folk’s feet at auctions with coloring books when I was probably only four or five years old. It was a weekly occurrence, and we considered it just part of life. My dad furnished our whole house with lovely American Golden Oak furniture that was picked out of dumpsters in alleys at a time when it wasn’t fashionable. He lovingly restored each piece, and several hold pride of place in my own home, as well as gracing Mom and Dad’s still. I began buying “stuff” at an early age, but I had good taste. The first piece of jewelry I ever bought was a lovely 1940s sterling silver deer pin that I purchased for the grand total of 10¢ at a school carnival thrift store. I still wear it regularly. That is not to say I have not had lapses in taste, as we all have. I also have a couple of absurd collections that I hide from most people, as I am sure they would think I was nuts. We hope to share some of our odd passions as well as our fun moments. We decided others might enjoy our amusement at those “what the heck” moments when we realized that people follow us around the thrift stores to laugh with us!

Deb: My family has always believed in reusing and recycling even before it was fashionable. It probably goes back to my mom being the youngest of ten children during the Depression, and/or that she and my dad had five kids of their own. It was a special thing when you got something new—and you took care of it! We certainly were not deprived, we had Barbies, bikes, and most everything a kid could want in those days. But I can remember stopping by someone’s trash and my mom picking up a bicycle and putting it in our car; it was lucky that my dad could fix anything. We also got lots of hand-me-downs from cousins and friends, which we wore and passed on in our turn. My parents swapped things with friends too—cars, pool tables, and even an old player piano. So, being a secondhand “Rose” runs in my blood, as well as first-class packrattery. That comes from my dad and grandpa–if you ever need something go see my dad, I’m sure he has one or two somewhere in his pole barn.

Why are we wasting time blogging when we could be shopping?

The next logical course in enjoying secondhand things is to laugh at horrible secondhand objects. It isn’t always hard to understand how things end up in a garage sale or at a thrift store—they are just so ugly that you question why they even exist. Of course we understand the concept of colors, patterns, and combinations thereof going in and out of vogue. Can anyone ever forget the love of harvest gold and avocado green of the 1970s, anything goes in the 1960s, pink & turquoise in the 1950s or even more recently the southwest color scheme of sage green and pink? So we get that things should be considered in the context of their origins. BUT there are objects out there that were never good, as we like to say to each other. Consider crocheted or knitted Afghans of whatever color Grandma had leftover from other projects—shudder visibly!

Having said all of that, we don’t have degrees in interior design or art. Kathy attended our local college and took art and art history classes—that’s as close as we come. However, we both are easily amused and highly opinionated, so that should count for something.

We would also like to it make perfectly clear that we aren’t laughing at your grandmother! We are poking fun at THINGS and the sensibility that created or paid for them. Everyone has a lapse now and then, or maybe all the time– it is conceivable that the most wonderful person in the world could have dreadful taste. We will be sure to show you the mind-boggling stuff we own– some things are just so awful that we have to drag them home because they make us laugh every time we see them. That is why we decided to blog about our adventures in secondhand shopping– we want everyone to laugh with us and at us. We sure hope that you share your own “what were they thinking” objects as you come across or recognize them.

OK, without further ado, here is the most horrible thing we have ever seen so far in 80+ years (that’s combined of course!) of going to garage sales, jumping into dumpsters, combing through estate sales, and visiting thrift stores:

People have argued that this isn’t the ugliest thing they have seen–our response is that they did not see it in person, a photo does not convey the full horror! The funny thing is that was gone the next week when we went back on our weekly trek—we wonder who dragged it home. It wasn’t us, we swear, although it did cross at least one of our minds 😉


Since that first post we’ve seen thousands of good and bad things, confessed to some of our crazy collections and purchases, and hopefully put a smile on at least one face per week.   We’ve also started a Facebook page where we’ll put a picture, a confession, or a how-to post up, when we get around to it, about twice a week.  We also have friends who post stuff on our page that obviously belongs there, only they saw it first!  If you do Facebook, take a look at The Second Hand Roses page.  If you find something bad or good, feel free to send us a picture so we can put it in the blog (you get full credit, however!) or you can throw it up (maybe literally) on the Facebook page.

We’re doing a giveaway associated with the Grow Your Blog event–it’s open to everyone who cares to enter, whether you’ve been with us from the beginning, or are a new friend.  We’ll announce the winner on February 15th, so that would make the deadline for entering midnight Valentine’s Day.  To enter, leave a comment here or email us at:  If you leave a comment, please check back on the 15th or soon afterward to see if you won–then you can contact us with your information.

What are we giving away?  Well, we are doing two good and one bad prize, AND you won’t know what’s coming until it arrives.  The good prizes are:

Vintage Feed SackWe have vintage feed sack material that was purchased at a garage sale for 25¢ per sack.  We will make two tea towels for one prize, and four napkins for the other.

Our next prize is something we found last week, and it literally stopped us in our tracks:

Isn't it a prize?   Isn't it a prize backside?

After we stopped laughing, we looked at each other and said, “Oh my God, have you ever seen anything like this?”  It’s vintage, about six inches tall, the tag on the bottom says Japan, and my dog Koko wants to rip it to pieces.  That’s all we know about it.  If you have a yen for the booby prize and win, let us know when you give us your contact information; we’ll see what we can do.

Thanks for visiting us and, if you’re a blogger, we’ll try to swing by and visit you.

This entry was posted in Friday Finds, Introduction. Bookmark the permalink.

86 Responses to Grow Your Blog 2014

  1. Diane says:

    I had a great time reading your post today and I appreciate the humor! I too join Friday Finds; did you know about Random 5 Friday? I think you would have fun participating in it with all your unusual finds! I joined you via email.

    • kathy & deb says:

      Thank you so much for the kind words and for joining in the fun. No we don’t know about Random 5 Friday–is it a bloggy thing? It sounds like fun!

  2. Thanks for replaying your first ever post, Kathy and Deb! So good to know a bit more about you both! I love your senses of humour and I love “thrift” shopping as you call it, but I have never, ever seen anything like that purple creation with horns and hands before!! Love your blog – keep up the great work!

    • kathy & deb says:

      Thank you Dani. We stumbled upon the Grow You Blog party while researching blog hops; a requirement was to “introduce yourselves”. We figured our regular readers might enjoy our first post too. We have found one other incarnation of the purple creation–it was a bleach bottle covered in white bags!

  3. Lorraine says:

    Thanks for participating in the GYB event. I had a good chuckle reading your posts – always a good thing! Have fun. Lorraine (GYB volunteer team).

  4. vicki says:

    Ladies — please create a link to my blog — my party post today — in your post here —
    thanks for participating — I hope you make lots of new friends! (the party badge onyour sidebar goes to the sign up page — you need to create a link to my todeays post in your post for today)

    • kathy & deb says:

      All done! That was to let our readers see what this was all about–but it should have been changed this am–my bad. Thank you soo much for hosting this. We’re on our way to visit as many blogs as we can this weekend.

  5. Sara says:

    You have quite a story 😉

    Thanks for your nice comment on my blog!
    I hope you are having fun in the GYB party.


  6. tvonzalez says:

    Oh yeah, you guys are going on my feed. Headhunter guy is perfect.

    I’ve posted a couple of photos of thrift shop wrecks from time to time …

    Popped by from GYBH. Stop by and visit me some time ~

  7. CynthiaCrane says:

    What a hoot! You 2 gals sure have a good time don’t you! Thanks for commenting on my blog so I could follow you here to get my laugh for the day – Cindy from

    • kathy & deb says:

      Thank you so much–we need Fridays for our weekly retail and girl talk therapy. Our theory is: the more, the merrier!

  8. Jan says:

    Oh my I needed some laughter today! I know one thing, it will never be boring around you two. headed to sign up now to follow! Thanks for the chance at the giveaway!
    xo jan@sewandsowfarm

  9. Judith says:

    thank you for visisting my blog. Must be fun working together.

    • kathy & deb says:

      Thank you for coming here to visit us. We always say we are sisters from another mother and we have way too much fun together. It’s nice to have a blogging partner too!

  10. What fun! Vicki’s GYB brought me here…and I may never leave! Great blog! Sara

  11. Dawn says:

    Oh my gosh! that last item is so funny–i’m laughing as I type! It would be lovely to look at on a frustrating day. Could maybe put it in my office for others to laugh at. It’s great. I will definitely be back to your blog when i’m awake to read some more. I love thrifting too.

    • kathy & deb says:

      Thank you for visiting–who knows that little sock fellow could soon be yours. We’re working our way through the huge GYB list, so we’ll be visiting you soon!

  12. Claire says:

    Lovely to meet you both – you sound like great fun to go shopping with 🙂
    Thanks for stopping by yesterday and leaving a lovely comment – strokes, eh?
    Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

    • kathy & deb says:

      Thank you for coming by our blog! This has been a great event for connecting people–we have visited some inspiring blogs–including yours. We encourage our readers to contact us if for any reason they are in Colorado, USA; we will take them on the shopping trip of a life time. You DO have to be immune to embarrassment, though. 😉

  13. Donna Heber says:

    Hi Kathy & Deb,

    I’m visiting from the Grow Your Blog party. It is nice to meet the two of you. I plan to look around a bit more and then be on my way to visit the others. I do hope you will stop by for a visit and enter my giveaway. Have a wonderful weekend! Hugs – Donna

    • kathy & deb says:

      Hi Donna–thanks for stopping by and yes we are working our way down the whole list and will be “seeing” you again!

  14. Bernadett says:


    Nice to meet you.:)
    I would like to participate in your giveaway.



  15. Patricia Dolton says:

    Your post made me laugh out loud so my daughter what I was laughing about. I shared some of your insights & she agrees!
    Thanks for visiting my redwork/ embroidery blog yesterday! I have my follow button working…

  16. Hmmm, looks like Jungle Julie forgot her spanx!

  17. Peg says:

    Thank you ladies for popping by my blog, it’s lovely to meet you and to read your lovely blog. If we don’t have a sense of humour it’s a very sad life we lead 🙂 I’ve liked you on FB and following by email but don’t see your followers button. It may be there and I’ve missed it.

    Peg x

    • kathy & deb says:

      Hey Peg, thank you for coming by and liking us on FB! This has been a great event–we’ve found so many blogs out there that we will be following. If you feel like subscribing by email, the button is on the right widget area, near the top, right under the picture of the ugly purple bunny. Thanks for summing up succinctly our philosophy–we need to laugh to keep our perspective.

  18. Janice Petty says:

    Greetings, Kathy & Deb, thanks for stopping by and your kind comments. Enjoy the ride ladies! Blessings, Jan

  19. Debra Kay Neiman says:

    New follower. I am having fun finding new bloggers to follow…love sewing and quilting. Greetings from Oklahoma, USA. crystalbluern at onlineok dot com

  20. Jo says:

    Kathy & Deb- what a hoot! I just know some of my stuff is going to end up on your blog when I’m gone. It’s in the “WHAT was I thinking” section of the basement; still functionally good (so you can’t throw it away) but so pitifully ugly that you can’t in good conscience inflict it on someone else.

    It’s all part of my life’s progress through many crafts, decorating styles and life changes. I’ve already told my kids they can dispose of it at will when the time comes- and they’ve assured me they will do so in the dead of night, with a borrowed car and wearing a disguise!

    Rock on girls- thanks for keeping us laughing…

    • kathy & deb says:

      Thank you so much for your awesome comment! Believe you me, I (Deb) have made some hideously ugly things in my time too; they make a great white elephant gift. Laugh at your self first–then you win! And as we proved with our favorite game, “what’s in their cart?”–it doesn’t matter how bad it is, someone will buy it!

  21. LesleyAnn says:

    Thank you for visiting Plum Hollow. I love your blog. How fun! And your giveaways are great! Thank you for the opportunity to win.

    Stop by again … I’ll be visiting soon!

    • kathy & deb says:

      Thank you for coming by. We’ve bookmarked a whole bunch of blogs (including yours) so we can swing by and visit! This was a wonderful event and we’re so happy to be participating.

  22. Kerrie says:

    Lol!! A great post – had a good laugh on this lazy day in Australia. Thanks for visiting my blog girls and I have signed up as an email follower.

    • kathy & deb says:

      Thank you and you made our day by letting us know you enjoyed our blog! The GYB event was wonderful; we’re still in the process of visiting blogs. That was some list Vickie put together.

  23. This is – without question – THE most GENIUS idea for a blog EVER! Phenominal! I tell you – I could compete with some of the tat you’ve found with a selection of the things my family collected over the years.My mother has a grand collection of what could ONLY be referred to as complete cr*p and she loves each and every piece. She refers to it as my ‘inheritance’…ye gads….

    Really glad you visited my blog – you’re on my favourite list now…and I’m looking forward to following along…and to the day when the image of that godawful purple rabbit THING is burned from my brain so I can sleep without night terrors! Great big hugs from Shroo:)x

    • kathy & deb says:

      Thank you sooo much–you are certainly one of us! If you can ever sneak a picture of your mother’s treasures, we would love to post them up on the blog. Sorry about Ruffles (godawful purple rabbit) he has scarred many a visitor. We’re so used to him that I don’t think we even see him any more.

  24. Oh my god. What a great blog! I grew up with the yard sale queen and apparently it’s in the blood. The horrible stuff is hysterical. Keep it comin’!!!

    • kathy & deb says:

      Thank you for stopping in–We really enjoyed your blog too! Hope science identifies the “garage sale” gene soon because I think it is in the blood! 😉

  25. Tina says:

    Hi Kathy, hi Deb, thanks for stopping by my own blog. I love yours and have subscribed with bloglovin to see what else you will bring to daylight 😉 Seems like you are having a great time together sharing your finds. You’ve already brought a smile to my face!!!
    And next time I am in fb I will check you our there, too!
    Have a great time, Tina in Germany

  26. lyn lewis says:

    LOLOL Not the booby prize PLEASE !!
    I too skip dip, rummage sale, car boot and charity shop here in UK. It was formerly to buy cheap then resell for cat rescue funds on a sunday car boot stall but these days its to stock up on cotton clothing for patchwork fabrics and odd bits n pieces for Topic Boxes and Storysacks that I make for visually impaired children.
    That Hula sock doll may well be collectable………….but I still don’t want it LOL
    Im a GYB visitor and now a follower because we obviously have the same humour!

    • kathy & deb says:

      Thank you so much! You are obviously a much better person than we are–how wonderful that you shop for bits and bobs for visually impaired children! We don’t want the hula/sock doll thingy either; lucky for us we got quite a few people saying they wanted it! We are having a very good time with the GYB event–still working our way through the list!

  27. LOL!!! Oh my gosh, that pink bunny thing is beyond atrocious. WOW! Let’s make Easter scary! I’m going to have nightmares. 😉 I know, second hand shopping is absolutely a blast. Sometimes you find the most amazing things, and sometimes, well, sometimes I come home with something and I look at it and look at it and look at it and think, what the heck was I thinking? And off it goes to be donated to another second hand shop or popped into a garage sale. Some estate sales are great too, especially on the last day when they want what’s left gone. Get some good deals then. I hope Koko doesn’t eat that Japanese doll thingy. That is very unique. Very unique indeed. Thanks for visiting my blog and I look forward to visiting with you both again too.

    Blessings, Bird

    • kathy & deb says:

      Thank you for coming by Bird. The wonderful thing about buying stuff second hand is that there’s no worries when you’re tired of it, out it goes! Even if it’s only for a day! 😉 Poor Ruffles the Ugly Bunny has terrorized many a kid I’m sure, and not a few adults. Several people want that Japanese doll thingy if you can believe it! Just goes to prove that it takes all kinds.

  28. You 2 ladies had me laughing so hard with your writing and adventures. I enjoy going thrifting my self and have some very unique items that my hubby says no one in their right mind would by. You have gained another follower

    • kathy & deb says:

      Thank you so much!! It’s our mission to make someone laugh with every post!! We do own our fair share of head-scratching things, but we know why we bought them–they made us laugh. 😉

  29. Jean says:

    Too funny! I have you beat in the “what were they thinking?”
    It is still available and my favorite second hand store….
    I am enjoying reading your blog.

    • kathy & deb says:

      Thank you for visiting us. You are right about the manikin/sewing machine combo–it’s gruesome! They ruined a perfectly good manikin, and lace; who knows if the sewing machine was working, but those things can frequently be fixed. It’s a pretty epic fail!

  30. Andrea says:

    I think maybe you should let Koko have that ‘thing’. You have a very fun space here. Thanks for stopping by my blog earlier.

    • kathy & deb says:

      Well, if I’m not careful, he’s going to get it and then what would I tell all the people that want it? Someone wants it?? That surprised us too! Thank you so much for coming by, and let’s hope you don’t win the “thing”. 😉

  31. Sarah O. says:

    Ha, those finds are so crazy-looking! Nice to find you both.

  32. Laney Mead says:

    I am howling with laughter!! Hi, I found you via GYB and I think you get the funniest blog award, what a hoot, I have signed up to like you on FB too 🙂 I will enjoy following your blog 🙂 Laney x

    • kathy & deb says:

      Laney–welcome and thank you!! So glad you’re here. The GYB event was amazing; we’re STILL working our way through the list. There are some great blogs out there.

  33. It is so good to meet you two! Thanks for stopping by my blog! I’m your newest follower so I don’t miss another hilarious post! I will also check out your FB page too!

    • kathy & deb says:

      Rachel, thank you so much for your kind comments! The Grow Your Blog event was so much fun–we’re still working our way through the list. There are so many amazing blogs!

  34. Berina Febin says:

    Had a good time reading through your blog… I’m new here.. found u thru GYB..
    Moxie Craftie

    • kathy & deb says:

      Thank you Berina! We’re glad you came by. The GYB event was a lot of fun! We still have to finish working our way down that long, long, list.

  35. Kathy h says:

    I think your blog is going to be lots of fun to follow. I like to see fun recycled things and your “worst” items are fun to look at too!

    • kathy & deb says:

      Thank you Kathy! We too like upcycling and do it when inspiration strikes. Thanks for reading and joining in the fun!

  36. Bwahahahahahaha – I WILL become your newest Follower – this blog is right up my alley! Dropping in from the Blog Party – BEST laugh I’ve had all day, THANK YOU!!!! Tanya

  37. Love it! Lighthearted blogs bring joy to the heart. Will be following to see what’s next 🙂

  38. jackie says:

    Too much fun. I love your blog. Signing up today. Hoping to win a goodie. Jackie

  39. Left my entry for the blog party on I love doggy accessories.

  40. Judy C says:

    Oh, I would love to shop with you. It sounds like so much fun.

    • kathy & deb says:

      Hey Judy, if you’re ever in No. Colorado send us an email and we’ll try to arrange a shopping trip. Thanks for reading our blog!

  41. patty says:

    Thanks for the laughs! So nice to meet you!

  42. Kathy says:

    Thanks so much for stopping by my blog this morning. I would have responded directly but you have a “no reply” address. I see that we have much in common and love the hunt. I adore your poodle pins in your most recent post. I have a friend that collects them. Nice to “meet” you!

    • kathy & deb says:

      Thank you for coming by too! That’s funny about the “no reply” address–it’s the first time that has happened. Glad you found us anyway. 😉 I love those crazy poodle pins too–I get lots of comments when I wear one.

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