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Brocante Vintage Market December 2013

December 8, 2013 at 4:40 pm

I wasn’t able to go to the preview this month for Brocante Vintage Market since the boys and I went to Busch Gardens Christmas Town, but I wasn’t going to be deterred from getting my monthly dose of Brocante. I haven’t missed one yet!

Brocante Vintage Market August 2013
Brocante Vintage Market September 2013
Brocante Vintage Market October 2013
Brocante Vintage Market November 2013

My friend Ali went to the preview with her daughter Molly and they texted me photos all night of things they thought I would like and things they liked. We’ve shopped together enough that they know my style.

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They also texted prices and locations of the items. They were not going to be able to be there Saturday morning when the market opened because it conflicted with the St. Pete Santa Parade. So they were previewing for me and I would be shopping for them. Perfect relationship.

The boys and I got up early and went to Trip’s Diner for breakfast before heading to the market. My NSNG diner breakfast…

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which I uglified for maximum deliciousness.

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We got to Brocante Market at about 8:30, a half hour before they opened. They had a fancy new ramp this month and there was already a line.

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Waiting wasn’t too bad, though, because it was sunny and warm and they had free coffee courtesy of BrewDLicious.

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By opening time there was a line down the sidewalk.

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When they let us in I went directly to the location of one of the items that Molly wanted, this little brass unicorn:

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But it was already gone! There were maybe 20 or 30 people in front of us in line and somebody else snagged it first. You lose some.

They had cookies! You win some (for the boys).

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The market was decorated beautifully, as always. Check out how they used these vintage player piano scrolls for a dramatic effect:

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This month the vendors had all of their Christmas best on display.

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These guys moved back and forth slowly and Mack said they were creepy:

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My friend Perry’s booth was especially Christmasy. He always has good stuff.

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I just now noticed this painting amidst Perry’s stuff:

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I wish I had looked at it more closely when I was there. I like the colors! Celesta, can you ask Perry if he sold that painting? Give him my e-mail.

Things I liked but did not buy:

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This little bookshelf was so nice. It was priced at $58 and originally I took the tag, but then decided that it was just too expensive and I didn’t have an exact location in mind for it. I really liked it, though. If it had been $30 I would have taken it home.

I really liked this tray and can see it spray-painted some fun glossy color (all over), but again I thought $18 was too much.

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I liked these small rectangular Pyrex pieces, and they were only $6 each, but yellow is not really my color so I skipped them.

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Ah, the vendor’s booths looked so great!

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This red lacquered dresser was pretty but pricey at $500-something.

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I really liked these Kentucky Derby glasses, and now I can’t remember why I didn’t get them. They must have been priced too high, but I didn’t get a photo of the tag and can’t remember. They would be so cool as décor for our annual Kentucky Derby party…the next one will be the first in our new home. Darn, I should have bought them.

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Loved this brass pineapple container, but thought $18 was too much.

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We have a pineapple theme subtly running through our house. We have a pineapple doorbell plate, several original pineapple light fixtures, pineapple finials on the staircase and curtain rods, as well as several pineapple accessories here and there. So I am drawn to them, but made myself walk away.

I went back and forth about this 3-tier serving tray the whole time I was there. I loved it so much. The chrome trays combined with the brass standard and cool decorative finial…I wanted it. But it was $28 dollars. Probably worth it, but I couldn’t justify it.

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I recently bought something similar at Ikea, and if I hadn’t just bought that one I would have definitely purchased this one. Dang it Ikea. You suck. (just kidding, you know I love you Ikea)

I loved all the creative light fixtures in this booth (hard to see, I know, but they were cool):

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They still had the stop-sign mirror, and it’s $40. I love it for a boys’ room, but have no use for it. Wish I did.

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Boots, boots, boots:

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I would have bought this in a second…

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but Chad would have thrown it out. I’m not sure of the price, but I liked it. It would look great in rotation on our mantle (in my opinion…Chad would differ).

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The boys always enjoy checking out all of the ancient technology at vintage stores.

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The starburst clock on the right below was in rough shape, but it is so cool.

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I actually thought I was buying this plant stand for $20:

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The exact same plant stand was at the market the past couple of months but in turquoise and it was priced at $40. This one was the right price and I could have painted it any color, so I asked a brocanteur to get the tag for me, which he did. But somehow it must not have gotten put with my pile of stuff because when I checked out it wasn’t there and I forgot about it. I hope they put the tag back on it for someone else to buy!

We have one of these dachshund boot scrapers by our driveway door…

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but ours is all rusted from living outside for years. I still love it. The rust just makes it look like a red doxie.

So what did I buy?

I got this little tinsel tree for $14.

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It is now the centerpiece of my dining room table and works perfectly in there where my decorations are all gold and red.

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I have a small collection of vintage glass carafes with brass details. I found two different ones and had to have them ($12 and $15).

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I got this 1970’s chip and dip daffodil tray for $15…

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and this leather purse for Molly ($14).

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The boys spent their money on those walking canes and Cal also bought the wooden shoe horn above (they were all $5 each).

I also bought this gold metal, adjustable height, standard with a hook and a star on the top, but didn’t get a photo. You can see the edge of the base of it above on the left. It was $12 and I thought it would be really neat to use on my mantle to hang a wreath some time without having to attach anything to the wall. I’m sure it will appear on the blog at a later date.

Finally I bought this little antique sterling creamer filled with succulents to give to Mack’s teacher ($10) with her Christmas gift:

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I know she likes vintage things.

In all I spent just over $100 and that included the purse for Molly and the canes for the boys (they paid me back). Such a bargain for a morning’s worth of entertainment for all of us. The market was busy and is getting more popular every month. Celesta and Sean (owners of Paper Street Market and founders of Brocante Vintage Market) and all of the brocanteurs were super busy but always friendly and helpful.

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The Christmas theme was so festive and it was another great month at Brocante. I am really feeling the holiday spirit this year.

See you next year Brocante Vintage Market!

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Cya.

Christmas Town at Busch Gardens Tampa 2013

December 7, 2013 at 3:25 pm

(Disclosure: My friend Caroline and I were able to attend Christmas Town free of charge thanks to Yelp Tampa Bay and our kids were able attend free of charge thanks to Busch Gardens and my association with the Tampa Bay Bloggers. All opinions are my own.)

Yesterday afternoon we picked up our friends, the other Caroline and her daughters Erin and Kelly, and headed to Busch Gardens Tampa for their annual Christmas Town event. We hit terrible traffic before we even got onto the Howard Frankland Bridge in St. Pete, and it took us over an hour and a half to make the usually 45 minute drive. But finally we arrived and boarded the tram from the parking lot.

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Once we arrived at the front entrance we found the Yelp table and the media relations table and got VIP passes, which the kids thought were pretty cool.

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The light displays at Busch Gardens during Christmas Town are just amazing. None of my pictures do any of them justice.

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I refrained from using flash for most of the night to try to capture the magic of the light display. Which do you want to see…the kids or the lights?

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Beautifully staged photo ops abound all throughout the park. They are hard to resist.

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Mack has been overly excited all week at the chance to ride his favorite coaster in the world, Cheetah Hunt, again. That was our first destination.

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We did make a slight detour into Penguin Point because Erin loves penguins!

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Our “older” kids enjoyed playing dress up with the penguin stands.

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We meant to come back to Penguin Point later to actually see the penguins, but we got sidetracked and didn’t make it back. Sorry Erin! Next year!

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We have been to Busch Gardens many times and it is really fun to see it transformed into a different park during Christmas Town.

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Finally we made it to Cheetah Hunt!

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However, we made Mack wait just a little longer because everyone was starving. We made a pit stop at the Crown Colony Café for food first.

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I knew there wouldn’t be many options at the park for me to eat, so I ate something beforehand. I took the opportunity while everyone else was eating to take selfies in the bathroom.

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I chose my outfit for maximum offspring embarrassment. I would have worn jeans but it was HOT last night. Even the long sleeves were pushing it.

Finally, after everyone ate, Mack and I headed to Cheetah Hunt.

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We had front-of-the-line passes for Cheetah Hunt, Gwazi, and Shiekra but didn’t need them. There was no line on any of the three open coasters.

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It is such a great coaster. The best part is that you accelerate on the ascensions, which is crazy. It also seems like a really long roller coaster to me.

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After that I hung out with the other kids…

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while Mack and the other Caroline rode Cheetah Hunt.

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We watched the Carol of the Bells at the Crown Colony House while we waited.

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My favorite part is the lights!

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After Mack got his Cheetah Hunt hit we walked back around towards Snow World a/k/a Coca-Cola world.

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Snow World was packed with people.

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We stood in line to get a pager to enter the “Snow Play” area (versus the “Snow Throwing” area or the “Snow Sliding” area…they each had different queues). Once we got our pager they told us it would be 30-40 minutes, and since Snow World is right next to Gwazi…

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Mack and I ran over there to get one ride in. No line!

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I have to say that Gwazi is not my favorite. It is so rattley and loud. It scares me to death. Mack loved it, of course. We didn’t stay to look at our picture (I’m sure my eyes were closed) because the other Caroline texted me that the pager had just buzzed. So we went back to Snow World, stood in another queue for a few minutes, then we were in the Snow Play area!

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They should call it, “The Florida Kid with Snow Photo Op Area.”

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It was a little crazy in there, but the kids were having fun.

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Mostly they liked sliding around everywhere.

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After our allotted snow play time was up we walked over to Christmas Town Village.

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It was so pretty.

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They have little shopping kiosks lining the walkways and a train ride for little kids at Jingle Bell Junction.

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Next we went through Poinsettia Parkway…

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where I failed to get a photo of the beautiful poinsettia Christmas trees. We meant to come back that way later, but never got the chance. Too much to see!

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We were hurrying on our way to Stanleyville to see a show, so we didn’t have time to linger. But we passed through one of my favorite areas of Christmas Town, Sesame Street’s A Very Furry Christmas.

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I love it because the trees are lit up in such amazing colors.

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We finally made it to the Stanleyville Theater to see Madagascar Live, Operation: Christmas Vacation.

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It was nice to sit down and enjoy some air conditioning.

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They even made it snow in there!

Next we decided to get on the Skyride so that we could see all of the park decorations, including the areas we had not gotten to like Timbuktu and the Holiday Hills. We had to wait in line for a short while, but the kids seemed entertained.

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On the Skyride:

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We only got to see half of the park from the sky since the Skyride has two sections and you can only do half at one time. We were dropped back off right next to Cheetah Hunt, so of course Mack had to go again. I was still rattled from Gwazi, so the other Caroline went with him.

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We ended our night with hot cocoa for the boys, and cotton candy for the girls.

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Thanks for a fun night Busch Gardens and Yelp Tampa Bay!

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Christmas Town will be at Busch Gardens for 18 select nights from November 29th through December 23rd. Advance tickets for children ages 3 to 9 are available for $10, and the event is a separate-ticketed night event. We didn’t get to do everything that Christmas Town has to offer, so click here for more information about all things Christmas Town Busch Gardens Tampa 2013.

We loved Christmas Town 2012, and now that we’ve gone twice it is a tradition!

Cya.