Friday, January 14, 2022


 Regular readers know that I have a favorite place to look for bargains...our downstairs trash area!  Our building has trash chutes on every floor and they feed into a separate room, but for boxes and other things that people can't put in the chute, there is an area (indoor) near the loading dock where people can put the things they don't want.  I've found quite a few cool items over the last few years.

Here is one are some of the latest!

Over the course of the week or two after Christmas and New Year, I gathered up the following items:

So this box was down there.  It's a "Slim Virginia Pine" pre-lit tree.  The box had some old water staining on it and I was thinking it might be damaged but when I opened it to check, the tree was fine, just some old water staining on the box.  A nice tree, 6 feet tall.

Here it is plugged in.  I made sure to test it before I "rescued it" and it works fine.  You only see half the lights on because I didn't plug one strand into the other on the tree itself before I plugged the bottom in.  The way they put it in the box didn't make it all fluffed up and even but since we're just going to keep it in the box anyway for the next year, there was no need to do that now.  It's a nice tree, 6 feet tall.

A few days later I went downstairs and found this...

...a wicker basket (score for the free basket too, ha) with Christmas lights inside!  I had to find an outlet downstairs so I could test them and they worked.  Two strands with 50 multicolored ball type lights on each...

...and then another two strands of lights, one white and one multicolored.  We can always use any lights for future decorating.

And THEN a few days later, I found this artificial tree!  No box with this one but here it is at the farm, waiting to go into a bag for storage.  Not sure what you call this "variety" of tree but it's 4 feet tall, really full and pretty, kind of frosted looking.  Not pre-lit this time but hey, we have plenty lights as per above.

But wait, there's more!

This post would have stopped here but just last night:

I went downstairs and someone had thrown away their real tree.  Not unusual of course.  It was dry and crispy but that's when I noticed that it still had lights on it.  I pulled it aside and saw the cords at the bottom.  They had just thrown away the tree with the lights still on it!  I started unwrapping them and it took me a good fifteen minutes or so.  They were on a very fine wire and I could later understand why someone probably decided it was easier to just toss the whole thing...but I had patience and kept at it...

...and it paid off.  I got this huge strand of what we think are called "fairy lights"?  They are tiny, tiny things like little LED seeds.  The wire is very thin and has a light every few inches.  Then there are these big fountain type pieces that are on stiffer wires that you can bend to a position, also with the tiny lights.  You can adjust all of them to strobe, flash, chasing, blinking, and any other number of patterns.  They are really unusual.  We'll find something to decorate with them.

After Christmas discards will become our future decorations and we're OK with that!


  1. Man; you got a bucket load of Free Treasures. You sure where lucky in retrieving all that. It's crazy the way some people throw out items like that.
    I had to kind laugh at your first photo of the lighted tree taken right in front of the fire extinguisher box. :}
    Love Fairy lights. They make beautiful accent in a holiday window box arrangement. I use small strands to go around some of my nativity sets, etc.
    Day after Christmas Home Depot still had A lot of real trees left and you could take as many as you wanted for Free of course so we bought a few of them home and piled them in corner section of our yard for the birds. Gives them some protection that way.
    Another way to use the real trees is to cut slices off the truck and using the slices to make ornaments, etc.

  2. Oh, the Christmas tree you not knowing what it is; I believe it might be a Virginia Pine.

  3. Those are awesome finds and I'm glad you could rescue them before they went to the landfill. It amazes me the stuff people throw away sometimes!

  4. I love fairy lights after I bought some on Amazon, not really knowing what they were. That is a whole lot of lights and trees. You can put one in every room. I love your trash room!

  5. On the frosted tree, I would put all cardinals. It would be so pretty! They make ones that clip on and ones with hangars. No lights, just cardinals and maybe the fairy lights.

  6. I LOVE your trash to treasure finds and you always write about them as if you are rescuing these items in secret. But have you been 'busted' down there in the Trash Area? I think I see a blog post or two of awesome Trash Area Stories here :wink:

  7. The mother lode for Christmas "trash". Lucky you! Our tree is very much like that first one. Doesn't take up much space but makes the statement and holds the ornaments.

  8. One man’s trash is another man’s treasure. And WOW! you found some treasures! Now you have trees -and lights - for every room and can have even more fun decorating.
    The fairy lights would be magical in the trees at the Farm in an entertainment area.

  9. You should seriously consider opening up a thrift store. I bought a "cheap" artificial tree this year because I saw someone on TV placed them around their yard (in Florida) to looks like a mini forest with lights on the trees. It was beautiful! Keep checking the storage room!


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