Let’s recap

This whole blog is the first time i’ve ever done something like this and I feel like i’ve learned a lot. Aside from learning how to build a site, I found piecing together analytics and what works to be the most interesting part. I was pretty surprised with the results. The first week I started this site in February had the most traffic. The only other week that came remotely close was exactly a month later in March.

Weekly analytics

My introductory post was also my most visited post of all time and I found that pretty shocking. It goes even further though. The tweet promoting that first post had the most impressions and engagement of all my promotional tweets. That could explain why the views were so strong early on. I’m also assuming because I’ve never made a blog before, people were more interested to see what it was all about. The following post I made was also pretty strong so that’s what pushed that first week so high.

Promotional tweets for my first two posts

Another interesting thing to note was the amount of people from other countries that found my blog. Again, the first week was the most diverse and as time went on it slowly decreased.

Countries that visited my site

Originally I wanted to include a lot of video content in my posts, but never actually did it. That’s an aspect that I feel would really improve my site as a whole. Social media on the other hand, I feel really helped get the word out and bring people in. Most of my traffic came from my Twitter. A larger follower count would further help, but generally your followers are already interested in what you do if they follow you so they are more likely to check out what you link.

Overall, I feel the experience taught me a lot about up-keeping and using experiences to tell a story or inform people. If I were to do this professionally I would definitely try to push boundaries more and do my best to keep people interested.

Kyle Flea Market: A small civilization

This weekend I visited the Kyle flea market. After checking out the 4th flea here in San Marcos, I thought I’d also see what Kyle had to offer. The small town is only around 15 minutes away from where I live so it was no hassle at all. I had heard from some friends that it was not huge and very dense. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I was excited nonetheless.

When I first arrived I was surprised by how big the area actually was. It was fairly contained, but I was expecting something a lot more quaint. The majority of the market is inside a big warehouse-like building. Outside there is a big lawn area where more vendors were able to set up shop. I began by looking around the outside booths and working my way inside.

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Outdoor vendors

 

 

 

 

Nothing outside really caught my attention so I went inside where over 80 vendors were. The whole inside was like something out of a movie. All the shops were constructed out of various things like wood, tarp, doors and who knows what else. It reminded me of a post apocalyptic civilization and it was actually really cool. There was even a few small makeshift restaurants. The whole look and feel of the place won me over almost immediately. I found a vendor that specialized in retro technology and antiques like typewriters and old video cameras. If I had the money I would have bought everything.

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I ended up leaving empty-handed, but only because my funds could not allow for the things I wanted. However, I really enjoyed the market and I’d like to go back soon. Hopefully next time, I’ll be able to buy something.

A border town duology: Day 2

As I said before, I spent two days at the Border Town flea market in my hometown of Laredo, Texas. Saturday, I found the giant gnome and that left me feeling pretty excited. However, I was feeling as if there was something I missed. I had gone later in the day so a good number of vendors had already left and the sun was at its peak. I figured I’d go earlier on Sunday to see if I could find something even greater.

The first thing I gravitated towards was another plush. It was a small anthropomorphic hot dog. He had arms, legs, a shirt and a big smile. Generally, something like this would not really catch my attention, but what I really liked about it was his shirt. His shirt had text on it that read “WienerMan.” I’m still not sure why, but I found it hilarious and bought for only $1.

Front View
Side View

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Next, is yet another plush. This time it was a giant fish. Not as giant as the gnome, but still big nonetheless. Again, I’m not entirely sure why I felt like I needed it, but that’s how I get my kicks. Apart from its size, there’s not a whole lot more to say about it. I bought it for $3.

The fish take up almost all of my couch

Overall, I found Border Town to be a great time and found a lot of great stuff. Great could be subjective in this case, but i’m happy with what I got. This is one of the most popular flea markets in town and for a good reason. If you’re ever in the area, definitely check it out.

A border town duology: Day 1

I found myself in Laredo again, but this time the findings were a plenty. Because of this, I went both days of the weekend, making these next two posts a double feature to end the Laredo flea market saga. This time I went to one of the most popular places known as the Border Town Flea Market. Border Town is located right next to another market I covered before, Pulga Blanca. The difference between them is pretty staggering considering how new and structured Pulga Blanca is. Border Town does have its charm though, and I find myself going back time and time again.

Border Town Flea Market

Again, much of what I described at the market on Guadalupe applies here. However, this time around instead of the parking lot/storage setting, the market rests on a large plot of land. Because of this, the area is very rocky, uneven and sometimes a little confusing to navigate. That being said, the potential finds more than outweigh the drawbacks of location. This time around I was able to find something I’m more than happy with. Fair warning that it’s more on the silly side rather than flat-out cool.

Border Town Flea Market
Vendors rarely specialize in a single good

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I ended up finding a vendor with a surplus of plush animals, which is nothing too out of the ordinary. What made this one different was the fact that they had a giant gnome plush and when I say giant, I mean giant. It stands around 5 feet tall and for some reason has his hands perpetually stretched out behind his back. I immediately fell in love with it because I live for these kind of ridiculous things. I bought for $10, which was a pleasant surprise to me because I figured it had to have cost at least $15. Now the only question is left to ask is: What do I do with a 5-foot tall gnome plush?

Front View
Side View

A new calling to a new market

I mentioned in a previous post that there was a new flea market in my hometown of Laredo, Texas. Pulga Blanca opened roughly over a month ago and is located just a few miles from another flea market.

Pulga Blanca Flea Market

Pulga Blanca reminded me a lot of Trader’s Village, but I don’t think that’s a bad thing. Trader’s Village is one of the largest flea markets in Texas and has over 1,000 vendors and thousands of visitors each weekend. Pulga Blanca was structured with aisles of storage units much like Trader’s and also had several food stands and small amusement attractions. They had a venue for live music and an area where people can eat and dance. Laredo has multiple flea markets, but they are all in very rough areas with no solid foundation. The structure of Pulga Blanca is a welcome change of pace and makes it much easier to navigate.

Covered eating area
Aisles comprised of storage units

When I first got there I spent a few minutes scoping the area out and seeing what the new market had to offer. Once I gathered my surroundings, I began the hunt and started down the aisles. Again, there were vendors selling all sorts of things from furniture to Mexican candy. There was also a very communal feeling to the whole place because there were several times I saw someone I knew either browsing or selling something. I hadn’t been there too long when a phone caught my eye.

This was no ordinary phone, it was an old cord phone. And it wasn’t just any ordinary cord phone either. It was a Snoopy phone. It had a wooden base with a red top that housed the number keys. A smiling Snoopy held the yellow phone and was accompanied by his bird companion, Woodstock. It was a little worn with several scuff marks, but that didn’t deter me. I bought it on the spot and gave it to my mother because she is a big Peanuts fan.

Front View
Back View
Phone undocked

Overall, I found Pulga Blanca to be a good time and I feel it can only get better. The atmosphere is inviting and I’m sure with live music and more people, it’ll quickly become a staple stop the next time I visit.

Annie Draws Things

I was browsing through blogs to follow when I stumbled upon Annie Draws Things. I am an artist ,so immediately I was drawn to it. My favorite kind of art is generally character design and cartoon aesthetics and Annie looked to deliver just that. I spent a while looking at some of her posts and as I kept scrolling, the more I liked what I saw. I followed the blog and figured I’d share my discovery.

Annie Draws Things consists of art pieces drawn by Annie. She works with pencil, ink and watercolors, so there’s a nice sense of variety in her work. As for the art itself, it ranges from character designs and fan art to more abstract patterns and designs. With each post she includes a brief description of the image, what inspired it, a personal anecdote or sometimes a motivational quote. In addition, her presentation is simple, clean and there’s not much to distract you from the art itself.

An example of one of Annie’s pieces

I wanted to bring attention to her blog because I personally found it inspiring. While not exactly similar to my flea market escapades, art is something I involve myself with heavily, and I am always looking for new creators to follow. I find her art style endearing and her use of color is fascinating. I highly recommend following her blog if you’re an artist or simply just want to enjoy her work. She also has an Instagram where she posts her work as well as other things going on in her life, so give her a follow.

Fishing for goods at La Pulga

This past weekend I visited my hometown of Laredo, Texas. While I was there I figured I’d make a trip to one of my local flea markets. There are multiple in Laredo, including one that just opened (I’ll be going there for a future post), but I went for the tried and true route. I went to the Guadalupe Flea Market, also known as, “La Pulga”.

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The Guadalupe Flea Market

Now this particular market is pretty contained compared to some other ones I’ve been too, but it could still hold some gems. The layout is a bit erratic because it’s situated in a large lot area close to downtown and there is also a section that is inside a small building. The vendors are nice and quick to answer any questions. Overall, the feeling I get from this market is a very homey one, but that could also stem from me growing up around these people.

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Inside of the market

There was plenty to see, but nothing was really jumping out at me. I then spotted a funny-looking cap. It was a baseball cap with a plush fish popping out of the front, a signature on the bill and the word “Angels” on the back. I was amused, but I decided I’d keep looking and maybe go back for it later. I continued on for a few more hours with nothing to show for it. I ended up going back and buying the hat for $2, which was totally fine by me.

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Fish hat

The hat itself grew on me the more I inspected it. The main draw is definitely the oddly colored 3D fish. I could only come to the conclusion that it was for some sort of sports team, judging by the Angels logo on the back. Either way, the hat makes me laugh and that’s all I could really ask for. “La Pulga” may not have had anything grand this time around, but that won’t keep me from coming back in search for more.

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Back view
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Front view

Hey, hey, hey! A day at Trader’s Village

Last weekend my cousin and I went to the Trader’s Village Flea Market in San Antonio. It’s one of many in Texas and even sports a few amusement park rides. With over 1,000 vendors each weekend, I knew this was a great way to start my journey.

There was so much to see and do it was almost overwhelming. However, we planned a route that would traverse the aisles while covering the most ground. From toys to toasters, it seemed like there was a vendor for anything you can think of.

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One of the many aisles/alleys of vendors

It wasn’t until late in our visit that we spotted it: a denim jacket hanging off the side of a clothing booth. Upon closer inspection I noticed the front pocket had writing on it: “Fat Albert.” I knew I was on to something and turned the jacket around and there was a big patch of Fat Albert and the Junkyard Gang. Elated, I bought the jacket on the spot for $15.

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The back of the jacket

The jacket surprised me by it’s quality alone. The stitching and patches weren’t just added by some exuberant Fat Albert fan, the jacket was made this way. It was also a bit large, but the novelty of it alone is enough for me to wear it around.

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Front
back-boy
Back

 

 

 

 

 

Overall, I only made one purchase, but it was one I wholeheartedly stand by. Trader’s Village had a vast spectrum of different vendors, food, and even live music. It felt almost like a theme park. The scale and variety that Trader’s Village offers is enough to warrant multiple visits and I recommend checking it out if you’re in the area.

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Me showing off my new aesthetic