Here are a few photos showing how we spent Memorial Day weekend. Well, more like how we spent the parts of the weekend that I was not at the mall. We had an impromptu bbq on Sunday evening because Matt had been wanting to fire up his handmade wine barrel smoker. My parents came by for a bit and then our friends Dan, Bill & Sarah came by for the second round of meats and beers. Since I had been working all day the house was kind of a mess but instead of rushing around and cleaning before guests arrived I decided they would get over the mess and I would sit down and have a beer. It ended up being a really fun and low-key evening.

Monday we got up early to head to Gypsy Caravan which is a huge flea market held to benefit the St. Louis Symphony. My only prior experience at the caravan was vending my jewelry a couple of years back. As a vendor we arrive super early, unload, park the car, set up the booth, sell all day, pack up the booth and head home after all of the crowds are gone.

Going to Gypsy Caravan to shop was a whole new and crazy experience. I knew it would be crowded but I was not expecting the amount of traffic and the number of people who were trying to get to this event. The exit off of the highway was backed up 1/2 a mile so we decided to use the next exit up and back track. Which cut about 45 minutes off our arrival time. We parked fairly easily but then waited 20 minutes for the shuttle only to get dropped off in a line of easily 100’s of people. Which luckily moved quickly.

Once we finally got inside we bought Stella a bag of kettle corn to keep her occupied in the wagon and Matt told me to do my thing and he would follow. So I scrambled from booth to booth looking for displays and merchandise for the shop while Matt tried his best to keep up. Our friend Roy met up with us for a bit but I sadly left him in the dust on my mission. (Sorry Roy!)

Since Stella didn’t want to give up her spot in the wagon I tried to keep my purchases to a minimum. My best scores were the vintage hat blocks I snagged right when we walked in. I have been collecting these to display hats & headbands at the store so I was excited to find some for a good price. And the lemon branch wall hanging was just too sweet to pass up. We ended up strapping it to the side of the wagon which was great in theory but it kept snagging the back of Matt’s leg which was not making him a happy camper.

At that point we were hot and Stella was tired of sitting so we decided to call it a day. The line to get back on the shuttle was sheer madness so we decided to hike it back to the car. Not fun. But we survived and I learned my lesson. Next year I will go by myself (or drag a friend/helper), I will pay for the early bird pass, arrive at the crack of dawn and get all the good stuff first and be on my way home before the rest of the crazies arrive. Too bad I have to wait a whole year until the next one.

Ps. Apologies for not having any actual photos from Gypsy Caravan but the thought of taking our camera out in the heat and humidity while juggling a toddler and a wagon full of vintage goodies was too much to handle. So you have to settle for my staged photo shoot instead. I need to invest in a new point and shoot that actually takes a decent photo for the days when I have to leave the dslr at home. Any suggestions?