White Barns Recap

Everything you read on the blog over the last few days was either scheduled ahead on time or written by Kelli…me I was so busy there was no time to blog!!  Sometimes life is so busy it’s hard for me to capture it in real time….I’m doing this post with the hope that you’ll get an idea of what it’s like behind the scenes look at an event like this from the vendors perspective.

Let me start out at last Thursday.  Kalissa wanted to sew some more pillows for White Barns.  The first batch of pillows she made was snapped up right away at her last even and she was sold out….so…more pillows it was.  I was doing childcare but she needed a little walk through so she sewed at my house.  It was more of a play with the kids for a bit and then make a pillow for a bit for her.


She was so relieved to be done!!  By the time she was done she was a pro at stuffing pillows!  She did graduate to envelope backings.

Black and gray seems to be popular so those are the colors she went with.

After that, she took off and went to an auction in Cresco.  It was an evening auction that started at 5pm.  I was still doing childcare….but promptly at 4:58 she called me and told me to come and that she thought it was going to be a good auction.

This auction was a little different that regular auctions I go to.  This one is done via big computer screens….and this time, there was two rings.  For any of you who are auction newbies, that means there are two auctioneers selling at the same time.

In this room there were small items….more household type items…..

In this room was the other auctioneer.  Bidders get a printed paper with the items listed on it.  Then there are screens that show the item number and a picture of the item.  It really makes time go fast.  It kept me busy as I kind of watched each ring and was kind of like a secretary checking off items as they sold or if I bought them.

I didn’t get to the sale until later so I missed out on some goodies…I know it doesn’t look like much to you but I so wish I could have gotten that industrial table that’s behind the garbage can.  Hubby would have loved refinishing that!!

Things are the sale went cheap.  I bought some old chairs for $1 each.  I think I’m going to paint them and put them on my front porch…and I think I’m going to get rid of my wicker couch.  I haven’t ran that all past Hubby but that’s my current thinking.

I know it’s surprising, but I ended up with a truck load of things.  Most of it is primitives from a shop.  I’ll show you more about that as we work on them.  Kalissa bought a three truck fulls of stuff…oh my.  She ended up taking the things she thought about taking directly to the White Barns sale that was the next day.

After loading I jumped into the truck not realizing that I had the back passenger door was open and started driving away.  UGH.  Here I am running around the truck and closing the door.


By now it was about 10pm.  I was pooped from a day of childcare and then the auction….but my mind was racing as I drove home.  Kalissa was following me in her pickup.  About six mile from home a deer jumped out of the ditch and ran across the road.  I knew I was going to hit it (I think that math I did in high school about the train leaving the station at one time of day travel at so many miles an hour finally came into use)  The deer had perfectly timed his run to ensure that I’d hit him.  Ugh.  I knew better then to swerve and there really wasn’t time or a place to go…so THUD!

I called Kalissa, pulled over and assessed the damage….here’s the result….A-okay.  No damage at all.  As I was climbing back into the cab to finish the drive home Kalissa yelled hey mom, wait, we need a selfie to commemorate a deer hit with no damage.  It so rarely happens. So here we are!!

Once home she went her way and I went mine.  Hubby had just got home.  He helped me unload…then Karl came home from his second shift job and helped me load.  I dug through some of my goodies enough to find a dozen or so things to quickly clean and take to White Barns in the morning after all, I needed to start recoup some of the money I spent.  By the time I got to bed it was just after midnight.

My alarm went off at 5:00am.  I was up and out the door by 5:15am.  It was a short night but there was work to be done.  I met Kalissa at the White Barn location at 6:45ish.  We unloaded and started to set up.  I was back to my house and started childcare for the kiddos at 7am.  Kalissa went back and continued set up.  I stayed home.  Kelli was suppose to help Kalissa but with her foot being a trouble she opted to stay with the childcare kids with the hope that she’d be able to keep her foot up over naptime at least.  That left me to go with Kalissa.

Here’s how it all looked just before the doors opened.


Karl had been a wonderful trooper listening to our beck and call.  Once we told him things were good and he could have a break his comment was…”I just need to lay down”…I said, “feel free”…and he did-right there in the middle of the booth.. (oh I love that kid)

Here I am manning the booth.  The SUN WAS WICKED.  We had wanted to keep out check out table out and not under the tents.  The sun had other plans though.  It was terrible.  Here I am already getting myself a sun burn (I did end up avoiding it) so we moved inside the tent…then inside further and further still. It was so hot and yucky.  I think it prevented shoppers from buying as much as they might otherwise as no one wanted to carry anything around.

I did have fun and Kelli and Kayla came for the end of the day at around 6ish so we ate supper there together.

The next day, Saturday, had it’s own kink of weather.  We started out with the threat of rain.  We were told rain by noon.  We decided the entire booth had to be reshuffled.  Things that could get wet were to stay outside.  Thing that couldn’t had to go under the tent.  I decided to take a few of my bigger things home.  I didn’t want them wet.  So we were at the booth at 7am on Saturday to make that all happen.  The night before I was in bed by 10ish so at least I got a decent amount of sleep.

Well our rain came early.  We had a gust of rain that last 10 minutes right at the opening.  It was SO-SO COLD.  Everything Friday was, heat and not a lot of breeze, Saturday wasn’t.  The vendors who had sweaters were selling LOTS.  People had come in shorts and T-shirts and were freezing.  Then our phones all started beeping and going off.  The National Weather Service put us in a High Wind Warning.  The rain had stopped but the wind gusts were crazy.  Here is how I looked for about an hour on Saturday morning…holding the tent down!!

We had two tents.  Kalissa would grab and hold the one while I held the other.

The weather did get better…We were able to take our jacket off.  Kelli and Kayla came back to the sale to join us for the afternoon.

…and I had another visitor, CONNIE and the gang.  How fun!

Connie is playing Grandma this week and have her grand kids.  They were traveling to Connie’s and stopped to see us.

Connie did have to tell a story when she got there.  She had stopped at Lou Ann’s in Oelwein.  The gal that was working said, “Hey, aren’t you the friend of Jo’s that’s on the blog”.  Yep, that’s my Connie.  How fun for us.  In reality, I’m the sidekick to Connie.  She’s so outgoing, me, not so much.  I so enjoy hanging with her.

By 3pm when the show was over it was time to get loading things up.  The skies were threatening…this time rain again.  Happily we had Kelli, Kayla, Kalissa, Hubby, Craig and me.  We had just the right amount of vehicles too.  We rushed and rushed.  They ended up sending me home to try to get our truck unloaded and out of the rain but the rain had other plans.  I was about half way home and the skies opened up and poured.  It only lasted for about five minutes though.  I got home and unloaded the truck.  I quickly wiped everything down and all was okay.

That night…we went out for super.  I was so pooped. I didn’t have the ability to cook!!

It was a whirlwind of a couple days.

Sunday we did as much cleaning, sorting and rearranging as possible.  There is plenty more to do.

I was asked if I’d do the show again….I think, as of now, this is a show I’ll pass on.  Kalissa will likely do it again.  We made a fine income from the show and were super happy with the space, the organizer and everyone.

For me, much of the items that are for sale are mass produced or reproductions.  There is a good portion of clothes, signs, garden art and such.  Personally I have fun going and looking at shows like this but I don’t feel as though I fit in with my stuff as as a vendor here.  I feel like my things fit in better at an antique or vintage show.  So we’ve decided that we’ll be doing the show in Clear Lake again.  That’s the Sunday of Labor Day weekend.  It’s always been my favorite show to attend.  We’ve had fun and good luck there in the past so why not?

So as I write it’s Monday and childcare is back on the front burner….it’s fun doing these things but my heart is still in childcare.

5 thoughts on “White Barns Recap

  1. Judy

    I don’t know how you do these marathons! I’m just exhausted from reading this blog! I need some of whatever you got girlfriend!

  2. Kim

    Wow! what a crazy fun filled few days! it made me laugh to see Karl laying down in the middle of the booth, haha. Glad the deer did no damage and the sale was a success.

  3. Jeri Niksich

    I love a good auction but unfortunately there isn’t any around me anymore. Just Estate Sales, which are fun but usually overpriced unless you go the second day when everything is half off but by then the good stuff is gone to people with more spending money than I have lol. I love going to outdoor sales like y’all had. But they are far and few down here due to the heat. Just a no win situation for me. Oh well saves money for fabrics! I admire you Jo for all the things you do for your family and the childcare kiddos.

  4. Andi Lien

    What are the actual dates for the Clear Lake event? I would love to run down to that event.

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