Cloverdale is the kind of place where you go away for the week-end and feel like you’ve been gone for a week. That’s exactly how I feel coming back from our thrift trip to Cloverdale this past week-end. With our Groupon voucher in hand, we headed up 101 to the town once voted “The Coolest” by the folks at Budget Travel http://www.budgettravel.com. So, naturally, we had to go and see for ourselves.
First stop: Auberge on the Vineyard, A French Accented B&B
This was actually the first time I’ve ever used Groupon, and I think I’m pretty hooked. Where can you go wrong when the price is 47% off? When we got to the B&B, it was dark outside, so when we woke up in the morning and realized that our room at Auberge on the Vineyard http://www.sonomabedbreakfastinnwinecountry.com/index.htm had a view of a beautiful vineyard that stretched as far as the eye could see, we were pretty giddy.
We sauntered over to share a gourmet breakfast with a nice group of people from places like St. Louis, MO; Nashville, Tennessee; San Francisco and jolly-old England. Since our previous B&B experiences left much to be desired, we were pretty happy that we actually enjoyed chatting with our fellow guests over havarti cheese, spinach and carmelized onion crepes, fresh brewed coffee, strawberry and granola parfaits and – what?! Breakfast dessert?! Never heard of that before, but we gamely obliged and devoured our freshly-baked almond tarts. Our hostess with the mostest, Roxanne glided skillfully around the room, coffee pot in hand, making sure we were all pointed in the right directions with our complimentary wine-tasting passes (it helps when the owner is a sommelier), and off we went to the Anderson Valley.
My husband remembers when the highway to points north went smack dab through the middle of Cloverdale before Highway 101 went in. Downtown Cloverdale has a little bit of a time warp feel. The town has some cool vintage signs.
Since there is really only one main drag in Cloverdale, it is easy to find it’s two thrift stores. The first one at the United Church of Cloverdale had the most beautiful entrance I’ve ever seen at a thrift store. It was tucked behind the gorgeous Gothic church.
Everywhere we went, the apple trees, magnolias, plum trees and daffodils were in bloom. The air was clean and fresh and tinted with the scents of Spring. The pace was easy and slow. I felt myself relaxing and beginning to notice and appreciate the little things.
Inside the store, Greg found a vintage Better Homes & Gardens Holiday Cook Book for $2. And, while the last thing we need is one more vintage cook book, we had to get this one for the photos, alone. They’re kind of Martha Stewart-meets-the-1950’s.
This photo was under “Casual Buffets, American Style” and features recipes for Chicken in Jiffy Tomato Sauce, Refrigerator Cheese Pie and Easy Chocolate Eclairs.
Surprisingly, the only thing we came away with was the cook book, but I have a feeling we’re going to be getting a lot of mileage out of it. I really wanted these canning jars, but since I don’t do any canning, I thought it best to leave them be for someone else. All of them combined were a whopping $1.75 total. They are a little glimpse into Cloverdale’s past (and maybe a little into it’s present). A simpler way of living.
This beautiful box would make a great container for something. How would you use it?
Meanwhile, over at the Goodwill down the road, I did find the one thing I’ve always been looking for, ever since I saw them at my friend Kathy’s apartment in Berkeley. She had an over-sized set of pencils propped up against her living room wall. They were theater set pieces and I thought it was the coolest decor, and I thought Kathy was so hip for thinking of it. While this one isn’t quite life-sized, it reminds me of a different time and place. Just like Cloverdale.
Stay tuned for Part Two of “Thrift Trip: Cloverdale” when I’ll be sharing some secrets about the Anderson Valley.
Until then, Happy Thrifting!
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