Do “Moochers” Tie Your Sales in Knots?

Selling content, whether it’s in a book, CD, DVD, a training program, or content on a blog,  a case study, or for a large web site, has the same inherent problem of facing the “moocher.” You write a piece of advertising hoping to hook a buyer by offering little free goodies: an e-Book; a free article; a discount; an item sent through surface mail, the list is


The “moochers” seem to troll the streams of opportunity looking for freebies. And while that’s not illegal, it costs time and resources to others who are truly looking for advice or a product you have.

Moochers come in all sizes. They like free stuff. Never mind that the free DVD on raising worms in your backyard is furthest from their mind. They’re just little hoarders.

The problem is that a lot of people, who were not qualified  prospects for those services, would call and demand the free CD anyway.  This wasted the time and money it cost to fulfill these requests  for that free CD.

This is what happened to Bob Bly, a long-time guru in Direct Marketing for large clients as well as  selling his helpful how-to books to entrepreneurs. For him it was worse!

“I resented these freeloaders — big-time. It annoyed the bejeezus out of me, truth be told.

“Why?  These moochers knew I offered the free CD to get copywriting  clients.  They knew they were NOT potential clients — and yet they were  telling me to send the CD because, after all, I had advertised it.

“Recently I changed the offer from a physical audio CD to a  downloadable PDF e-book, so as to eliminate the expense of  fulfilling the requests.  But I had the same problem: non-prospects who had no intention  of buying my paid services mooching free stuff off me.

“This problem is not unique to me, by the way.  It is a universal flaw in the content marketing model:

“Namely, when you offer valuable free content as a bribe to get  response, you generate a lot of response from people who want  the content only but have no interest in your product or service. So, here is my easy solution for stopping these “content moochers”  cold.

“I humbly recommend it to you, too — if you, like me, don’t want to waste time and effort giving away valuable free stuff to people who are not potential customers and never will be.  To get my free e-book, you have to type into your browser the URL of a landing page where the book can be downloaded.

“The landing page copy used to say — ”fill in this form to get your  free e-book” — which to me says anyone and everyone can get it.

“But a few months ago I changed the landing page copy to say —  “fill in this form to see if you qualify to receive this free  e-book.”  This clearly communicates that not everyone is entitled to it.

“You have to qualify. And who decides whether you qualify? I do — based on how you fill in the order form. Importantly, I believe the copy, as worded, frees me from the
obligation to send the e-book to anyone I don’t want to. And I don’t. It’s my call — at my discretion.

“It’s a small thing, but I came to resent the freeloaders who  wanted an e-book that regularly sells for $49 for free.

“So I don’t send it to just anyone any more. It’s only for  prospects I might consider taking on as clients — (or customers we might sell a book to) —  a very small subset of the universe.

“If you are using landing pages to give away free content, and you want to separate qualified leads from freebie seekers, here are a few tips:

** As stated, change “to get” for the phrase “to see if you qualify” — clearly indicating that whether they get the freebie is your  call, not theirs.

** Also have a separate check box they can use to request more  information on your product or service. If they only check the box for the free content and not for more information on what you sell, they are most likely a bad lead and you can act accordingly. Exceptions? Of course.

** Require them to give you their web site. By clicking on it you can instantly see whether they are a real prospect and a good fit for your services.

** If they disrespect you by filling in fields on the form with nonsense or gibberish – don’t respond or send them a thing.

** Make phone number and e-mail addresses required fields. If the information they fill in is fake, again they are not a good lead.”


Thanks to Bob Bly’s insight, we can tighten up the sales funnel and make more sales through prospects that are actually interested in the products, books, or services we sell.

Now that makes sense.

Bob Bly, Copywriter / Consultant and author of over 70 books, can be reached at or

Rusty LaGrange

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Categories: Blogging, Entrepreneurs, High Desert Writers, Uncategorized | Tags: , | Leave a comment

How to Meet People in a New Community

Feeling alone in a new community without close family and friends nearby is a terrible feeling. Finding the solutions to the loneliness begins when you go where the people are.

When my husband and I purchased a cabin in the High Desert of southern California, I didn’t know people in the community. My mother and mother-in-law had both just passed away. Grief hit and didn’t let up for a long season. Grief and loneliness became too much for me to deal with. Then I happened to read an article about the High Desert branch of California Writers Club (HDCWC) held at Apple Valley’s library the second Saturday of each month.

I went to the next meeting. No seats were available in the back. I had to go up to one of the front rows. Talk about intimidating! They even asked visitors to stand and introduce themselves, including their writing interests or publications.

You might feel intimidated at first like I did at the first HDCWC meeting. It’s okay to feel that way at first. Remember that it’s the beginning of finding solutions to your loneliness. Either you become a hermit or get out and meet people. I got out and met people. It worked, but it took time.

Look around your new community for places that look interesting. Do research online for hobbies you enjoy. Find a 5K to participate in. Visit churches until you find one that you feel is best for you and your family. Join an improv comedy, a scrapbook, or blogging group or start your own. Get involved in the community.

Darwin's A Team, Victorville, CA

Victorville’s Improv Comedy Troupe, Darwin’s A Team













And there they go!

And there they go!











High Desert Bloggers, Route 66 Molly Brown's

High Desert Bloggers at Molly Brown’s on National Trails Highway




Categories: Community | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

Is There No Integrity Among Bloggers?

file0001462552138The topic of this post has been rolling around in my mind for at least the last six months.  For those of you who don’t know me, I am a French lingerie model.  I am 5 feet 11 inches tall, and I weigh 120 pounds.  Because of my success as a model, I am independently wealthy, and I spend about six months of the year living on my Lürssen yacht.  For those of you who know me and are wondering what the &$@# I’m talking about, everything I just said was all a lie.  Of course, since it’s on the internet, it must be true.  Actually, I need to make a correction.  I should say that all of it was a lie except for the part about the topic of the post rolling around the back of my mind for the last six months.

It all started with the Daddy Long Legs who was hanging out on some equipment where I work.  I was vanquishing him with my hands because I had been raised to believe that they were beneficial spiders that would kill poisonous spiders and eat them.  In other words, Daddy Long Legs was a friend.    A co-worker immediately began freaking out because she believed that these spiders were poisonous.  I am by no means a spider expert, but I was certain that my mother would have mentioned to me the fact that they were poisonous if that were the case.  She treated black widows and brown recluse spiders in a very different way than she treated the daddy long legs.  I questioned my co-worker further and she stated that they were poisonous but that they couldn’t bite because of the position of their mouths.  If that was the case, I wondered why she was so freaked out.  Regardless, her opinion about the spider didn’t seem right to me.

When I got home, I did an internet search and discovered the following.  There were a bunch of blogs that solemnly proclaimed her opinion as  fact and to be true.  Some even stated that the venom of the daddy long legs spider was more toxic than the black widow.  When I went to University of California at Riverside’s website, though, I discovered the following.

  1. My mother was correct.  Daddy long legs is not poisonous.  He will eat other spiders and other bugs.
  2. My c0-worker was wrong.  Daddy long legs can bite.  His mouth is in the same position as the brown recluse and we have all heard that Mr. Brown Recluse is certainly capable of biting.  In fact. the bite of the Brown Recluse has been shown to result in tissue death which can result in serious infection.
  3. Some bloggers post anything they want on their websites without regard to the accuracy of the information they present.
  4. There are people like that girl from the State Farm commercial who believe that if it’s on the internet it must be true.

If you don’t believe me or the university, try the MythBusters segment that you can view by clicking here.  (If it’s on TV, it’s true, right?)

So, while I continued to ponder a post complaining about the lack of blog-tegrity (integrity among bloggers to ensure, at least, that their information is correct), life continued.  It was something that my son showed me on his Facebook page that finally spurred me into action.  What he presented to me was a link to the following headline:

HOBBY LOBBY STONES GAY EMPLOYEE TO DEATH.  (Click here to follow the link to the original article.)

As I read this article two things occurred to me.  There was no way this story was true, and it was going to go viral.  It did.  Within a day or two of publication, this article was spreading like wild fire.  Suddenly, many bloggers were weighing in with their opinion.  There were several blogs and internet sites that jumped onto the Hobby Lobby and Christian Bashing bandwagon.  I would link to the specific posts on these sites, but after reported that it was a false claim, many of these posts disappeared.    I was particulary horrified by the post that ranted about what people would say if it was a company owned by Muslims who started forcing their religious views on employees and executing women who didn’t wear hijabs or burqas.  Alas, the post is no more, so I can’t link to it.  All I get when I go there is a page not found message.

I am certain that there are many bloggers out there thanking God for the Move to Trash button on their blog sites.  Unlike the “famously incorrect Dewey Defeats Truman banner headline” published by the Chicago Tribune back in the glory days of print newspapers, bloggers can just erase those embarrassing mistakes.  Maybe that’s why no one bothers to ensure that their posts are accurate.  As I write this, there are still a few comment boards on sites and some Facebook comments that you can find, but largely, the moral outrage over the stoning death of the fictitious Hobby Lobby employee has dwindled.

There is no specific code of ethics for bloggers.  Journalistic integrity includes the expectation “that the journalist will  be as accurate as possible given the time allotted to story preparation and the space available, and to seek reliable sources.”   They also publish corrections when errors are made.  They don’t just move the whole thing to the trash and pretend it didn’t happen.  Perhaps, we, as bloggers,  need to establish our own code of ethics and standards of conduct.  Maybe someone already has, and no one bothers to adhere to it.

As bloggers, I believe that we have a certain amount of moral responsibility.  The things that we report should be as accurate as possible.  When I read that article with my outraged son, I did the following research before I allowed myself to become upset.  I checked to see if  Hobby Lobby had any stores in Arkansas.  I discovered that there were at least 7.  I checked to make sure that homicide was against the law in Arkansas, and I found out that it was.  I checked to see which, if any, of the stores were located in Wilson county, and discovered that there was no Wilson county in Arkansas.  Hmmm….I found two problems with the story–no one was arrested for homicide, and there was no Wilson county.     I was convinced that the story was a lie, but my son required further proof.  (He is young and not nearly as cynical as I am.)

I found the proof he needed on the same site as the original article.  If you scroll down to the bottom of the page, past all the comments, and whatever else there is, you will find a link that says ‘About”.  If you click on that link, you will find the following.

The Daily Currant is an English language online satirical newspaper that covers global politics, business, technology, entertainment, science, health and media. It is accessible from over 190 countries worldwide – now including South Sudan.

Our mission is to ridicule the timid ignorance which obstructs our progress, and promote intelligence – which presses forward.

Q. Are your news stories real?

A. No. Our stories are purely fictional. However they are meant to address real-world issues through satire and often refer and link to real events happening in the world

Everyone, calm down.  Put down the picket signs.  Cancel the boycott.   Hobby Lobby did NOT stone an employee to death.  What is my point in this post?  If you are a blogger, before you promote the spread of outrage based on fiction, check your facts.  Know your sources, and please, have some integrity.  Do your homework, and make sure you’re posting accurate information.  Don’t spread baseless rumors.  Granted, a controversial post can be good for boosting traffic and stimulating comments, but I believe that we should be providing information to help and enlighten people.  I don’t believe that my job as a blogger is to enrage people.  If you’re going to post satirical fiction, make sure it’s clear to your readers that’s what you do.  When you get an idea from someone else, give them credit with a link back to their site.  There’s enough web traffic to share.

 **Patti  can also be found at where she tries to limit her blogging to stocking a pantry, budgeting, and recipes.  She isn’t always successful.

Categories: Blogging, Writing | Tags: , , , , , , | 2 Comments

A Proud Desert Town Celebrates

Fireworks with flag

In our rural desert town, we don’t always get a fireworks show. In fact this year, we grabbed an offer for a discount price on fireworks if we signed up for Thursday — July 3rd — instead. It’s not the first time we’ve been frugal and clever.

So this year, our celebration began Thursday evening with a stroll in the Park, some tasty food from vendors who were eager to have two opportunities to sell on a busy holiday, children racing with tiny flags in their hands, and a swing band with upbeat horns who knew how to “get the joint jumpin.’”

When the heat and sun gave way to the dusk and a soft summer breeze, we sat ready on our picnic blankets or dragged folding chairs to the lawn, anticipating the barrage of light and sound to come.

As the fireworks sprayed across a night sky, an undercurrent of voices drummed in some kind of song. At first, I heard a high nasal tone from a woman far off. Someone near me said, “Is that someone singing?” Then another deeper voice and then a few more in harmony, and as I listened, the lyrics cleared. And as if the fireworks shot up in prearranged percussion, the many voices grew and gathered more angelic, more spiritual, more home-grown … “My Country ‘Tis of Thee,  Sweet Land of Liberty, of thee I sing…” their voGirl with flagices growing and gathering up all the families — no matter their faiths or ethnicities — “Land Where My Fathers’ Died, Land of the Pilgrims’ Pride,” — no matter that they knew the words or not — “From Every Mountainside Let Freedom Ring!”

I cried silently.

It was natural and beautiful. I felt that my little community held the Spirit of every little way station across this huge nation of towering skyscrapers and ribbons of highway. We sang for those who fought for our freedom, strong memories that strummed our heart-strings, as we continued to raise our heads in pure pride and let freedom ring…

From her mamma’s lap, the hesitant, young patriot waved a flag upward to a brilliant starburst of pride.

Rusty LaGrange

Categories: High Desert Living, High Desert People, Holiday, Uncategorized | Tags: , , | 2 Comments

Creating Joy on Independence Day

Happy Independence Day!

It’s a hot day already in the High Desert. Watering flowers in the morning, taking pictures of red, white, and blue, and just being outdoors are part of the freedoms I enjoy.

white flowers in a vintage glass pitcher

White Alyssum on July 4th












Garden flowers on July 4th

Red flowers in my garden










Glass Bowling Ball

My own special-made bowling ball with “A” for Angie – a gift from my husband!














Barbecues and fireworks are among the top-of-the-list July 4th favorite things to do in America. It’s days like today that remind me of nearly ten years that my hubby and daughter and I traveled across America speaking and singing in churches. Those days will forever hold a special place in my heart. We found a Route 66 picture frame and cut out a picture of the three of us and placed it on the Route 66 map. It’s on my July 4th tablescape today along with a picture of hubby when he sacrificed over a year in Iraq working to serve our country and troops.

Red, white, and blue tablescape

Happy Independence Day!












The blue board in the tablescape is a Monopoly board. My July 4th memories are all about enjoying family with games, food, fun and fireworks! Decorating the table for July 4th – even when no company is coming – is how I create my own joy. It’s fun!

John Adams wrote to his wife, Abigail, about Independence Day: “It ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward forever more.”

And that’s what we still do – celebrate with pomp and parade, shows, games, sports, and always food!

Looking for games to take to my friends’  house for barbecue today, I found a jump-rope given to me awhile back and tried it out this morning. When I was a young girl, jump-rope was one of my favorite things to do outdoors – until my brother and his friend needed a rope for something. (They didn’t even buy me a new one either.)

Two of my favorite games are Upwords and Dominoes. I’ll bring those along with my jump-rope to create a little activity outside with the friends today.

Holidays are fun to spend with family and friends. However, many people live far from their family, and others have to work. Holidays can be depressing because of this. We have to create our own joy in such times. That’s what growing gardens are good for – besides the healthy part of eating fresh vegetables, fruit, and herbs and enjoying the beauty in all the colors of the flowers.

If you do have the holiday off from work and don’t have anywhere to go, do something for yourself. I like to be outside gardening, and I like to read but often don’t have too much time to devote to reading. Here are a few ideas for the reader:

Americana cookbook reading

Cooking Healthy Across America













Presidents' wives' cookbook

Firs Ladies (Presidents’ wives) cookbook and Todd Anton’s No Greater Love baseball book













July 4th food and recipes

Preserving and pickling garden foods, Raw fresh garden foods, and July 4th holiday recipes













Garden Reading Material

Gardening and arranging fresh flowers












July 4th is made even better when you include home-made ice cream or an ice-cream float!


Ice Cream Float












Enjoy your holiday, and take pictures – lots of them! Create more memories. Include your comments about what your favorite July 4th activities and food are. I’d love to hear from you!

Happy July 4th!


I’m joining the fun over at Pink Saturday for July 4th! Don’t miss out on all the beauty displayed in blog land.



Categories: Holiday | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A Simple Summer Picnic

Independence Day has arrived with it’s full regalia.  That means summer is well underway.    For me, Summer is all about planning outdoor adventures.  The warmer temperatures are all about hikes, camping trips, and picnics in the parks.  It doesn’t really matter what we’re doing as long as we are outside enjoying the great weather.

Of course, with summer temperatures that have been know to get as high as 120 degrees Fahrenheit, outdoor activities in the Mojave Desert can also pose a threat to your health and safety.  It’s important to ensure that you always carry  plenty of water  so that you will stay hydrated, apply sunscreen, wear sunglasses, and take a hat, scarf, or umbrella to provide yourself with some protection from the sun.   It’s also good to avoid exertion in the warmest part of the day.  For information about what you should have with you when hiking in the desert, visit the Bureau of Land Management’s site.

National Park Service has a fun PDF for teachers that you can down load and go over with your kids.  It includes information about desert wildlife and unit 3 is all about safety in the desert.   It’s 99 pages long, but you can read it on-line and only print out the pages that you need or want.  Personally, I’m a big kid, so I really like doing the kid activities, too.  Don’t tell my children.  They already think I’m strange.

I seem to have gotten off of my subject.   Today’s post is supposed to be about picnics.  Specifically, it’s about how to pack a simple picnic so that you can get outside and enjoy yourself without spending hours in the kitchen.  A picnic doesn’t have to be complicated.  It just has to be something that you and your family will enjoy.  With that in mind, here are a few simple suggestions for things that you can quickly pack into a small cooler and take to your local park or to one of our favorite places–Mojave Narrows Regional Park

One of the things we do in order to make it easy to pack up a quick picnic is to keep several bottles of water and boxes or pouches of juice in our freezer.  These help to keep the food from getting too hot.  A general rule of thumb is that picnic food shouldn’t be out for more than 2 hours, but if the weather is over 90 degrees, as it is most days here during the summer here in the high desert, that time is cut in half to one hour.  Keeping things chilled with frozen drinks will help diminish the risk of food born illness.  It also helps to ensure that you will have cool drinks later in the day.  Of course, you should try and keep your cooler out of the sun as much as possible.

Here’s my recipe for a quick and easy picnic.  Of course, you might have to make some adjustments based up on your families preferences.

First, grab something for dessert.  I know this sounds strange, but we are grabbing things and packing them.  What we eat last, should be on the bottom.  I prefer cookies, brownies, or some type of bars because they are pretty indestructible and they don’t melt.  Avoid things with frosting and pack them in a hard sided plastic container, so they won’t get crushed.

Second, grab some protein.  I prefer italian dry salami because until it’s open, most brands are shelf stable, meaning they don’t require refrigeration.   Likewise, hard cheeses make a good protein source as they hold up well without refrigeration.  You can find a list of some of these cheeses here.

Next, we toss in something to put the cheese and salami on.  Good choices are crackers, tortillas, pita bread, or even a baguette.  If you will be hiking with your food in an insulated backpack, the tortillas and pita bread might be a better choice, but the crackers can handle the trip if they are packed into a hard sided container.

Raw Vegetables such as carrots, celery, zucchini sticks and even sugar snap peas and stips of bell peppers go great with hummus or this zucchini dip.  Just be sure to take only as much dip as you think you’ll eat, and keep it chilled by packing it under those frozen drinks.    Both of these dips are great with crackers or pieces of bread, too.  Always be careful to keep your dip from getting hot and spoiling.  Putting it under the ice packs or frozen drinks works best because while heat rises, cold air descends.

We never take mayonnaise on our summer picnics because of the risk of spoilage.  Most of the time, we use mustard because it tolerates the heat better without spoiling.  If you must have mayonnaise  on your wrap or sandwich, try and take along some of the little packets you can get from the deli.  You can always take along some olives, pickle spears, chips, or even nuts to add variety to your menu.  It’s entirely up to you.

Toss in some fresh fruit.  You could even pack a personal watermelon, but my favorites are grapes, plums, and peaches.  They don’t require cutting and are very portable.

Make sure you snug your pre-chilled, and frozen drinks in around everything that you have packed into your cooler or insulated pack.  Take care not to crush anything fragile.  Remember that hard sided plastic containers can be your friend.  Just make sure they are BPA free.

Remember to put in a knife to cut the salami and cheese with.  I usually buy the pre-sliced salami, and take my cheese cutter for the cheese.  There’s less chance I will slice a hole in my soft sided cooler that way.   Plates, napkins, baby wipes, and hand sanitizer are all handy to have.   Don’t forget to pack plastic cups if you have a large bottle of  juice, wine, or homemade lemonade.

Packing a picnic doesn’t have to be complicated.   Get out there and enjoy the summer sun.

Other picnic ideas can be found here. 

**Patti  can also be found at where she tries to limit her blogging to stocking a pantry, budgeting, and recipes.  She isn’t always successful.

Categories: Food, High Desert Living, Holiday, Summer | Tags: , , | 1 Comment

Red, White, Blue and Things to Do in High Desert of So Cal

Freedom - July 4th

Photo by G.P. Horn










God bless America! July 4th – a day to show thanks and gratefulness for freedom, our country, our families, another day to live.

Things to do…

Ever made a flag clock? This one was special made by Greg Horn, my other half of 35+ years.

Upcycled flag clock

Red, white, and blue flag upcycled clock











Want to go to an improv show in the High Desert? This group, Funny Bizness, is family friendly and hilarious.

Darwin's A Team, Victorville, CA

Victorville’s Improv Comedy Troupe, Funny Bizness












Want to go vintage shopping July 4th weekend? Look up these places on Facebook for special holiday weekend hours and sales.

antique shopping at Antique Station, Oro Grande, CA

Antique Station vintage shopping, Oro Grande, CA










Linda Marie’s Enchanted Treasures – closed on July 4th but opens with a giant sale on Saturday, July 5th…


Shopping vintage in Oro Grande, CA

Linda Marie’s Enchanted Treasures, Oro Grande, CA













Don’t forget to stop by beautiful Carriage House Antiques this weekend…











The Desert Cottage is closed July 4th but open on Saturday, July 5th – lovely place to shop!

vintage shopping at The Desert Cottage

The Desert Cottage, Hesperia, CA










Categories: Holiday | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

So Cal Vintage Shopping in the High Desert

Flowers in Sinks

Sink Gardening

Love vintage shopping? Consider taking a trip to the High Desert if you live or are visiting in Southern California.

High Desert vintage shops include a variety of styles from Route 66 and early-to-mid 1900′s finds to classy and elegant antiques. Make it an all-day shopping trip and start out with breakfast at Molly’s on National Trails Highway in Helendale. High Desert Bloggers went there for breakfast, and I ordered a veggie omelet without the eggs. It was the first time Molly’s had made the egg-less omelet. This makes a perfect breakfast for vegetarians or anyone limiting the carbs.

High Desert Bloggers, Route 66 Molly Brown's

High Desert Bloggers at Molly Brown’s on National Trails Highway











Start your shopping in Oro Grande at Linda Marie’s Enchanted Treasures and Antique Station. This little cottage antique shop and outdoor vintage village is a must to visit. It’s on Route 66 and next to Antique Station which you’ll not want to miss. Just at these two shops alone can take half a day. That’s why I recommend starting out very early on a Saturday morning or plan a two-day vintage trip.

Turn right on 7th Street (Santa Fe Trading Company is an absolute must to stop by if you like Southwestern decor!! Though not an antique shop, I wouldn’t want you to go past it without at least spending a little time there. It’s on the right soon after you turn onto 7th.)

Linda Marie's









The next antique shop is P’s and Q’s on 7th, a fun place to shop. When you get through shopping here, you may be ready for lunch. A cute little Caribbean restaurant with the best spicy chicken with Jamaican Jerk Seasoning and delicious desserts is located on 7th.

Now for the second part of your vintage shopping day, visit The Desert Cottage








The Desert Cottage is a delightful shop for purchasing a gift item for a friend with elegant style. Recently, my husband and I went by and enjoyed browsing through this lovely shop and meeting the friendly owners.

Saturday, June 28, The Desert Cottage is having a special Summer Outdoor Marketplace that starts at 8:00 am.






























Carriage House Antiques, a beautiful and classy place to enjoy with a mini tea sitting area, is located on Hesperia Road in Hesperia.

Vintage shopping at Carriage House Antiques

Carriage House Antiques, Hesperia, CA










One can easily forget the time when strolling through any of these antique stores.

There are two more fun places to shop, Vintage Gypsies on Highway 18 in Apple Valley (though they will be closed on June 28 and July 4, 2014) and Smoketree Junction Antiques in Pinon Hills. Smoketree Junction has a lovely outdoor garden area, occasional evening dinner events, and Saturday flea markets on the first Saturday of the month and a Sunday barter market to haggle with the vendors.

Garden Antiques

Smoketree Junction Garden

vintage bench

Vintage Gypsies Upcycled Bench



















Need more time for visiting these shops? Make a two-day trip out of it. The High Desert has much to choose from when it comes to shopping vintage.

If you plan your trip on the weekend, most of these shops mentioned are open on Sundays except for The Desert Cottage. Carriage House Antiques is open on Sundays but not until 11:00 am.

Enjoy your High Desert vintage shopping trip!


Categories: High Desert Shopping | Leave a comment

Vintage Shopping in the High Desert

Summer Flowers at Linda Marie's

Linda Marie’s Enchanted Treasures

Looking for places to go vintage shopping in the High Desert? I know just the place – Linda Marie’s Enchanted Treasures in Oro Grande is like a little village of vintage. Located at 19222 National Trails Hwy, Oro Grande, California, it’s about an hour and a half from LA and three hours from Las Vegas.

Lovely Linda Marie or her assistants will greet you with a friendly welcome. Browse through the vintage cottage then make your way outdoors to the village of vendors’ vintage finds. You’ll enjoy this quaint fun place.






A recent trip to Linda Marie’s inspired me as always with the cute sinks and baskets of flowers. Such inspiration from previous trips there had me itching to start my own sink gardens.


Herb Sink Gardening

My Sink Garden














Flowers in Sinks

Sink Gardening at Linda Marie’s














Oh there’s more. Buckets and baskets and kitchen finds. Walk inside the 1950′s style RV of kitchen pretties in the little outside village.

RV Vintage Shopping

1950′s RV Kitchen Shopping










Water bucket…

Vintage bucket waterfall

Bucket Waterfall












You’ll find a village full of finds at Linda Marie’s, and next door is another vintage place you’ll want to include on your shopping trip – Antique Station. Come back again soon to read a post on Antique Station.



Categories: High Desert Shopping | Tags: , , , , | 2 Comments

Flower Shopping at Lowe’s

Finding flowers at Lowe's

On a walk through Lowe’s garden area













Entering a nursery is like going to a candy store to a gardener.

Shopping in the garden section of Lowe’s recently reminded me of taking my mother there on one of our last outings together. She walked slowly up and down the aisles with her walker looking for flowers she wanted to plant.

Last week I purchased three plants on the $1 rack at Lowe’s. I understood how Mother could linger while enjoying the loveliness of multiple colors and choosing her favorite flowers. Walking around a nursery and breathing in the aroma of rows and rows of flowers is intoxicating. Wandering over to the roses, I couldn’t resist watching a spider working its web. I was able to catch it on video but had to hurry. Not the greatest picture of a spider. My voice was scratchy that day, too. Just a quiet moment watching a spider with a web in the roses.

Spider in the roses

Pink on Father's Day

Me and my pink cap from my hubby with flowers from Lowe’s













Flowers have brought joy into my life since I was very young. When I was barely big enough to walk, a friend of my mom’s brought her a bouquet of flowers one day. While they were talking (and not paying attention to me), I grabbed the bouquet and ran to a hiding place – my parents’ bedroom. Mother noticed I was quiet and came to find me. I was in their bed by the pillows, hugging the flowers.

Pink for Father's Day

Pink flowers at Lowe’s













Today is Father’s Day, not a day we think of pink and flowers. However, my dad and my husband are two of the most patient men I’ve ever known when it comes to waiting while their wives shop. Many of those shopping trips were at floral nurseries, and Dad and my husband both actually always acted like they were enjoying themselves picking out plants, bushes, and trees.

Pink at Lowe's

Lots of Pink in Lowe’s garden area













Let’s go over to Pink Saturday to see all the pink goodies and stories on Father’s Day!


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