December 19, 2018:


I can't believe we're less than a week away from Christmas and I haven't yet really decorated the kitchen and dinette! I've got the small cardinal tree up on the peninsula counter and my Christmas cards are shaped in the form of a Christmas tree and taped to a wall by the dining table; I put up my colorful teal floral curtains with lots of gold and red, my cardinal prints and added a red tablecloth to the dining table, but that's it! Enough, I suppose.

The tree is done! It seemed to take forever this year to decorate but I am loving the result. It looks like the kind of mish-mash everything on it but the kitchen sink kind of tree I remember from my childhood. The only thing missing is the bubble lights, but I'm too frugal to buy them!

I hope everyone has a wonderful holiday season and that the dreaded Polar Vortex stays away!


Saturday, September 14, 2013

Rummage Sale Lessons

Hola darlings!

Today is absolutely gorgeous here so I'm taking advantage by blogging out on the deck -- I'll save lawn mowing out here for later on.  I cut the front yard Thursday night in preparation for the rummage sale Friday morning, and I finished it up this morning by trimming out the edges.  All I have to do now is sweep up, and I'll do that later on.  Or maybe the rain that is supposed to come tomorrow will wash it all away (cross fingers and hope it rains hard and we get a good inch, because the flowers, trees, shrubs and grass really need it). 

It is hard to believe it's September 14th already.  The cicadas are still buzzing like mad around the neighborhood, although in the cool of yesterday (sunny but windy and cool), they were quieted.  I don't think I recall a summer this far gone where the cicadas were still buzzing this late in the season.  We are about three weeks behind schedule, though, so maybe that's the explanation. 

About that neighborhood rummage sale --

Left side of driveway (above).  Check out that blue sky!  Like that chippy chair?  I was offering it for $20 (negotiable).  No takers.  And it folds up for storage! 

Right side of driveway.  You can see by the sharp shadows cast that it was very sunny.  There was a  breeze all day.  Out of the sun it was cool.  Got up to about 65 or so in my area, but it was much cooler by the lake.  The winds did a 180 turn Thursday evening from the southwest to the northeast and blew away three days of high temperatures and equally high dew points.

All the items on those tables marching up the driveway belong to my friend Ann's sister, Rosie. She is a great rummage saler.  I wish now I would have taken a look at the items on her tables (and their prices) much sooner than at the end of the day when we started packing up.  I might have sold something.

Yep - utter monetary bust for moi.  I sold two items for a total of $2.50.  I made more money selling chips, soda and water.  Seems I had my wonderful, gorgeous and genuinely worth it items priced too high for the bargain hunters who turned out for the neighborhood.  Rosie sold lots of items, but items I thought would sell great for her were still left on the tables at the end of the day.  I was utterly amazed, and shocked, too.  I guess what I think of as good value at rummage sales and what other people are looking for are another 180 turn. I don't expect to pay 10 cents for a Rembrandt.

From Rosie's tables, I ended up buying a gorgeous creamy porcelain cathedral votive for $4 and I loved it so much - and it was sooo worth the price - it did not even occur to me to offer less.  I thought it was a great bargain at the price.  It's porcelain, in pristine condition, about 8 inches tall at the two towers at the front, perhaps 5 inches wide and 7-8 inches long.  It will look fabulous in my front room when I switch it back to the Queens' Room.  It actually will fit in well over Christmas too.  I put a votive into it last night and fired her up and it was so beautiful with the light flickering out of the windows and the towers. 

I also found the cutest ceramic and porcelain bunnies!  The sum total of the items I bought from Rosie was about $3 (not including the porcelain cathedral).  I had lots of left over Mountain Dew and regular Pepsi, so Ann suggested we swap, and it was a done deal.  Rosie and I were both quite happy with our deal. 

I realized that I had my items priced too high.  I thought the prices were quite reasonable, I would have been willing to pay those prices.  I also priced with the thought in mind that people would bargain over price. But only one person did, a $3 purse that she got for $1.50. So, everything went back into the house.  A large box of items was packed and put away for next year.  We're planning on getting together for the 2014 neighborhood rummage sale.  The rest were put back into the house in their normal places.  It's good to have my things back around me, actually :)

I had a blast!  It was great getting together with Ann and Rosie, and the day really sped by.  And, let me tell you girlfriends (as I'm sure any of you experienced in this process already know), I worked my butt off over several days cleaning out cabinets and closets, and spent a very enjoyable Thursday night on the internet strolling down memory lane as I checked out going prices for my 20 or so albums from the 1960-s through 1980's.  And then a man who was obviously a dealer showed up yesterday morning while we were still setting up and had the gall to laugh and tell me that he pays 50 cents for albums like mine.  Yeah, ride, dude.  Maybe you do, and then you turn around and offer them on e-bay for 10 to 100 times the price.  I told him flat out that I had priced the albums on the internet and the prices as marked were median prices.  I was willing to negotiate but I wasn't going to sell any of them for 50 cents.  And if nobody wanted them they would go back into my closet where they've been happily partying all these years.  He left in a huff, the schmuck!

Do NOT come on to my property and insult my intelligence by trying to denigrate what I am offering to sell to you.  That is NOT the way to win friends and influence enemies.  Especially not this femme.

My cabinets are cleaned out!  My garage is the cleanest it's been since I moved in 23 years ago, wow.  It looks awesome.  All the yard stuff is finally put in one corner; I purchased another plastic shelving unit for off the floor storage and they are great!  Hold lots and get stuff off the floor.  I got rid of all the old leaves in the corners and crud and dirt (and probably mouse turds, too) and I even tried to scrub away (but not too hard) some of the mysterious stains on the concrete floor.  Where did those come from, I wonder?  What are they, anyway?  LOL!  I don't keep a CAR in the garage, folks.  I don't own one.  So where did those spills and stains come from?  When I work out there painting or whatever, I put tons of newspaper down on the floor...

Anyway, it was a fun experience and it was great having some of the neighbors stop by to say hello. They were experiencing pretty much the same thing as I did -- lots of traffic but few sales.

I was so tired last night I was in bed by 9 and had a good night's sleep. So now I know the trick -- hold a rummage sale every day and I'll sleep like a baby every night.

I now have room in my cabinets and things are more organized. The favorites among the items offered for sale were taken back and put into the curio cabinet or the book cabinet or tucked away for seasonal use (like my new Santa and bunnies). 

Anyone wanna buy a really nice patio set?  Originally $65, now going for $50:

My unsellable stuff (unless I practically give it away, which I am not going to do):

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