I spent the Christmas holiday visiting my parents at their farm near Sheldon in O'Brien County. Of course, with a little extra time on my hands, it's never a bad idea to go exploring. Even in your own hometown, there's probably a store, business, or restaurant that you have rarely - if ever - visited. Right? Why not stop in? You might find yourself pleasantly surprised.
On the Saturday before Christmas, I stopped into a few stores I almost always visit when I'm back visiting my folks - but I also went to a couple of stores that I haven't been to in years, if ever. One of the stores I seem to always hit up is Laura's Vintage Therapy.
As you are entering Sheldon from the east (on Highway 18), there is a large white building on the north side of the road that used to be the Roller Roulette, a roller skating rink that was a significant part of the "coming of age" for many decades of Sheldon (and surrounding area) youth.
Today? The psychedelic carpet, smooth concrete rink, DJ booth, and skate sizing guide are still there - but if you still wanted to go skating - you'd have to dodge 14,000 square feet of antiques, collectibles, vintage items, and more.
There is one large room and then a couple smaller rooms that are packed full of furniture, decor, and other vintage and primitives.
This happens to be a place where people can consign their items, but it's also an outlet for those who need a place to sell their handmade talents.
There is a sizable population in Northwest Iowa with Dutch ancestry so it is not surprising to see shelves full of Dutch collectibles.
There are rows of furniture and antiques to fit most styles.
Throughout, you can find plenty of agricultural and industrial salvage such as wooden pallets, corrugated metal, and more.
Of course, you can always count on me to highlight some adventure artwork.
This country store display case is very nice - I am not sure if the candy is included, or not.
Like any antique store, you can always count on a selection of crocks and cast iron cookware as well as John Deere memorabilia.
If nothing else trips your trigger, there are some fun stuffed animals available - including Raggedy Anne and Andy.
On one small wall near the counter, there is a significant selection of jewelry for sale.
But of course, there are always the warnings to behave!
Next time you are in Northwest Iowa and specifically Sheldon, you will be glad you stopped in at Laura's Vintage Therapy. The inventory is always changing and there is no shortage of things to look at, even if all you want to do is kill a little time.
As always, I welcome your suggestions for future stops to profile in O'Brien County or elsewhere in our state. Please feel free to drop me a note on my website.