Friday, October 29, 2010

More indoor archeology (decluttering and de-hoarding)

Every day that I take out more stuff out of the house than what I bring in, is a good thing. I did go to my fav thrift today but mainly went just to look to see if they were throwing away any good boxes. I have to pack up some stuff for donating and need boxes. Today I also brought another box of books to the used bookstore (a person is allowed to bring in one box per week maximum). Out of curiosity, I asked how much store credit I got for the box of books from last week - I was shocked at how much store credit I got. $53.25! I can buy a lot of books with that! haha. And none were books that would have sold for a lot on ebay.

I also declutterized towels and donated two large garbage bags full of bath towels, dish towels, washcloths to a local animal rescue organization. They said they can use towels of all sizes; they use the big towels for use in the puppy pens. 20 years ago when we were first married, we bought some Lands' End towels that are virtually indestructible. They never got thin or holes but after 20 years I was tired of looking at them and some had gotten bleach stains/discoloring so out they went. I even donated some towels that I remember buying, with my employee discount, when I was single and living with the parents and worked part-time at Bradlees.

Here's a few of the puppies that may be enjoying my Lands' End towels soon:

Today I also went to a rare Friday garage sale. The seller is an avid couponer and I've been to their sales before. I didn't buy anything (there wasn't anything I needed) but I took this picture:

It's a ton of cat treats. There is a saying that goes something like "Quick nickels are better than slow dimes". A long time ago, in the coupon inserts there was a coupon for a free pack of the cat treats (I remember that coupon since I got a bunch too!) So this seller got a ton of the cat treats and had them at their last yardsale marked high (maybe $1 each?) . So instead of just selling them cheap to get rid of them, they hung on to them and hung on to them, and now they are all expired and marked .25 and no one wants them. Cats are finicky, they will know the cat treats have expired. If the seller had marked them cheap to begin with, they would be a lot easier to sell unexpired. It just seems kinda greedy to have high prices on things at a yardsale - especially when it's something that was free.

I spotted this truck in the parking lot of my fav thrift. Grass growing in the back of your pick-up truck may be good for the environment, but probably not so good for the truck.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

This is so bizarre

I came across this sign for an upcoming bazaar. I'd like to think someone misspelled it on purpose as a joke, but I doubt it.

Hey, I have some good news and bad news. The good news - the queen is getting a new crown!! Yea!!! The queen likes new and shiny crowns. The bad news, I have to wear it on an upper molar - right hand side to be exact.

In other good news, out of the blue, Amvets called today to say they would be in my 'hood soon to pick up any donations I may have. Years ago, I was on the calling list for the Purple Heart organization and they would call about every 6 months asking for household/clothing donations but then they stopped. This will be my first Amvets donation. They better bring a big truck. Saves me from hauling the stuff to the thrift store. And it also saves me from having to look at my old stuff when I shop at my thrift store, since when it gets picked up by an organization it goes far far away.

I'm going to be re-decorating soon and using my Lane cedar chest as a bench in our foyer. I will do some before & after pics. I think I will either be craiglsting my existing gossip bench or bringing it to a local live auction. I spent too many hours refinishing that thing to just give it away.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Jehovah's Witnesses, Peeing in Public, Yardsale

I decided to do one last yardsale at the fairgrounds for the year ($10 space rental). Sorry I don't have a "before" picture but here's an "after" shot. And I use that 4 shelf plastic thing to display stuff on (it's not for sale). I sold a lot of stuff cheap today and made about $200. One of my last customers was a nice lady who told me how she is new to the area yadda yadda so I talked with her a while. Then she handed me a Jehovah's Witness pamphlet "Awake! Unemployed? How You Can Live on Less". Here's one of their cutting edge money saving tips - "Stock up on items that are on sale or in season." Wow - I would never have thought of that. Puhleese.

I sold a huge Corelle covered casserole dish that I received as a wedding shower present many moons ago - that will free up a big portion of a kitchen cabinet. I used it occasionally (maybe like once every 2 years???) but really I can easily live without it. I should go thru my entire kitchen and get rid of a lot of stuff. Since it's only the 3 of us, I generally don't cook large portions of food. And if I need to bring a covered dish somewhere, I'll be bringing my tortilla roll-ups or something else that is easy to make. Not something in a huge Corelle dish.

Then once I closed up shop, I walked around to see some of the other sellers that I hadn't had a chance to shop at. One woman shopper was oblivious to her young son peeing about a foot away from some other seller's table. And the seller didn't see it either. It was like the boy had done it a million times before and didn't see anything wrong with peeing in public.

Looking forward to next Saturday - no trips planned and not having another yardsale. I want to shop! I am going to go thru my yardsale leftovers and will donate a bunch of good usable items to my thrift. Some stuff I am keeping (like brand new toys) since if our Parks & Recs has an indoor yardsale in December, that sort of stuff would be good to sell.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

The Decluttering Workout

The last few days I've been doing a lot of decluttering. I did some browsing at my thrifts but didn't see anything I had to have. I did like this large terracotta planter but I am not paying $10 for a dirty planter.

Today I re-donated Springbok puzzles to my thrift. Certain Springbox puzzles sell well on ebay. I bought them all cheap (like .25 or .50 each) with the intention that I would put them all together, take pictures and put them up on ebay and people would go into a bidding frenzy over them. I'm a slow learner but I finally realized that the time it would take to put the puzzles together would seriously cut into my internet/shopping/sleeping time. So back to the thrift they went. No more puzzles for me unless they are sealed, priced cheap, and is one that people will want. After Crocodile Hunter Steve Irwin died, I read that Crocodile Hunter stuff would jump in value, hence the two pre-owned Croc puzzles. Which are not sealed. A sealed one didn't even get a $5 bid on ebay. So not gonna waste my time or waste storage space that could be used for something more profitable. No, I don't have a storage unit - I'm just talking about garage shelf space.

I also dropped off a few magazines/cardboard etc to the paper recycling. Walking up and down the stairs to the paper recycling dumpster lugging armfuls of magazines is a good workout. I also dropped of a box of books to the second hand bookstore for store credit and dropped off 2 boxes of books to the library for their used book table.

One magazine that is not getting thrown out is a defunct magazine named Domino. I will be listing on ebay a group of about 6 issues of them soon.

And bags and bags of clothes that got donated:

I also went thru my bathroom and practically filled a garbage bag full of old makeup, old lotion and miscellaneous crap. I found some baby lotion that I bought BEFORE I had Jacob. Hey Johnson & Johnson - what's the deal? You can't you come up with a baby lotion that smells good after being opened for only 10 years???

With all this decluttering I am unearthing things I forgot I even had. My mom gave Jacob one of those commemorative coin collection of the 50 state quarters. I found that in my bathroom closet.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

I want my Criss Angel corvette (even if it is standard transmission)

So I get a call tonight from someone in Las Vegas calling to verify that I entered the drawing to "Win a Criss Angel Corvette" contest that was going on at the Luxor Hotel. My heart starts pounding and I excitedly answer "yes yes yes!!!!" There was a pause, and then the caller says "well we just wanted to let you know that the winner will be picked later this month, but in the meantime, we want to offer you this amazing deal to visit the Luxor again and stay for 3 free nights and all you have to do is listen to our 1 hour presentation on an amazing vacation opportunity blah blah blah blah.....

What a day. Almost got killed or maimed by clutter. In my decluttering efforts, I was carrying some heavy boxes down the stairs and whoopsie, almost broke some body parts. Luckily it was early in the morning and I hadn't started drinking yet, otherwise it would have been bad.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Weekend trip to Philadelphia - Rocky Steps, Philly Cheesesteak, broken bell

We went to Philadelphia over the weekend since Jacob had Friday off from school, DH was off work, and Jacob kept saying he wanted to go to there for some strange reason. So we drove up on Friday and came home on Sunday. No need to do that ever again (crappy ride, tolls, got stuck in Obama traffic in Wilmington DE etc etc). And no yardsales for me. Waaaa. But got to cross two things off the bucket list - eat a real Philly cheesesteak and run up the Rocky steps. Thankfully I lived to tell about it. Rocky is probably the Queen's fav movie of all time (Pulp Fiction would be #2).

So on Friday we ate at Geno's and on Saturday we bought a $10 family tourist bus pass and went to the Rocky steps, Constitution Hall and saw the Liberty Bell for about 2 minutes and did some other stuff. Here's random pictures in no special order:

Love Park - DH was sitting on a bench while Jacob and I went to the artwork so I could take Jacob's picture. Some other tourist offered to take our picture together. Here's his handywork:

Geno's. Afterward we walked thru South Philly and eventually made it back to our hotel. Streets were lined with various street vendors. Stores that sold live poultry etc etc. Did not buy any live poultry or pineapples.

Walked thru Macy's, it was across the street from our hotel. This eagle is pfamous in Philly

Dangerous stuff being sold in souvenir store near the hotel - careful kids - that's a real keychain there!

Lines were horrendous all day long to see the Liberty Bell - there was no line about 5 minutes before they closed to we were able to grab a quick looksee.

Someone about to get hitched:

View from the Rocky steps:

Jacob watching his first protest parade. They held up the tourist bus - boooo hiss to them!

In south Philly - $1 Pineapples!!!!!!!

Some sort of freaky artwork near the $1 pineapples.

Constitution Hall - isn't it gorgeous??? Inside a Park Ranger gave a very entertaining talk about history stuff and I got to see some antiques that were not for sale.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

BUT it's only a SMALL mountain of clothes

Well DH has this week off from work and since Jacob is in school we didn't go anywhere. He had this great idea of decluttering Jacob's room. The chunky books are gone. Well at least most of them - I had to save a copy of Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed. Jacob also had a few too many pieces of clothing. A lot were outgrown clothes or clothes he never wears. I did find a nice pair of like new Lands End boy shoes that I plan on ebaying - I'm sure I bought them cheap at some yardsale years ago but he doesn't wear them. I donated a ton of the clothes but kept most of the "grow into" clothes. You know, clothes that I have for him to wear from now until manhood. He'll be the only senior in high school wearing a "Vote for Pedro" shirt.

We rearranged the furniture and the old school desk that I painted back in 2006 no longer fits in the room. It would be one thing if he actually used it, but it became the dumping ground for clean clothes that needed to be hung up. He does have a computer desk so really, no need for 2 desks.

Saturday, October 09, 2010

Another Saturday, another yardsale

Beautiful Saturday here for a yardsale. I hauled my junk in my trunk up to the fairgrounds to rent a $10 yardsale space. I may do another before they close up for the year. I made close to $200 which means I sold a ton and a half of .25 and .50 items. I think I sold two $10 items, but other than that it was all very low priced stuff.

setting up, the sun finally rising

It was kinda surreal setting up for the yardsale. I got there before 6am and it was pitch black. Other sellers were walking around with the miner flashlight hats on etc. I had my tiny flashlight on my keychain.

Here's the back of my car - my junk was the stuff on the tables at the back of the car, the stuff on the tarp and the stuff on the ironing board. My ironing board didn't sell ($5) so I'm just going to keep it. I think once I clean out my computer corner, I can set it up, throw a tablecloth on it, and use it as my ebay packaging table (and I can store all my tape guns etc under it and have it hidden under the tablecloth). We have a built-in ironing board (it comes down from the wall) so no need for a regular one to iron on.

I was busy throughout the morning so I really didn't get a chance to shop at the other yardsales. On my way home, I stopped at the animal adoption center (since have a thrift store type room but my main purpose was to ask to see if they still wanted towel donations and to check their house. (They use a lot of towels for the animals). I need to declutter my towels. Here is the .25 thing I bought at the animal adoption center yardsale (metal sign):

Here's one of my customers - personally, I'm not a tattoo person but I loved the colorful look, especially with the paint-spashed clothing (he was a painter on the way to a painting job).

On the way home, I dropped off enough stuff to fill a grocery cart and a half of my yardsale duds. Here's proof with the worker handing me my donation receipt.

Maybe since I am trying hard not to buy stuff I can still browse and just take pictures of stuff I don't buy. I saw this adorable sweater the other day at my fav thrift. $2 and it was handmade. If someone had made that for my child (assuming I had a girl) there is no way I'd be able to donate it to a thrift - I would have had to keep it forever cuz it's just too cute.

Friday, October 08, 2010

Tip of the Day - use for fresh cow dung

Do you suffer from athlete's foot fungus? And don't feel like spending your hard earned money on some fancy schmancy stuff in a can from the drugstore? Well do I have a tip for you. Just step in cow dung - tada - problem solved! You're welcome.

I was thumbing thru a Foxfire book that I am putting up on ebay and that tip caught my eye. I always look for Foxfire books for resale - a complete set (1-9) sells for about $80 on ebay, but even if you have 3 or 4 of them they can sell for $30 or so. Your mileage may vary. I don't think I have any more Foxfire books so I'm just selling it solo.

I'll be renting a $10 space at the fairground's yardsale tomorrow morning so I hope to sell a lot. Weather is supposed to be nice. I'll take pics.

Thursday, October 07, 2010

Indoor Archeology


Another day of doing some indoor archeology. I am digging up the past. I found the stencil I used when I stenciled our living room/dining room at least a dozen years ago. Ummm... stenciling is still the latest trend in the world of interior design, right? Don't answer. I don't have time to paint over it now.

I also found one of my favorite ashtrays. No, I don't smoke but of course I have ashtrays that I don't use or need. It's a little silver doggy from the 1939 New York World's Fair. I think I must have paid a quarter for him. He was all tarnished so I polished him up a while ago (since I have no intention of selling him) but now he is getting tarnished again (I will leave him alone). I will use him to hold doo-dads on my desk.

And I cleaned behind my desk today. Here it is for your viewing pleasure:

But it's not as bad as it looks - haha. The speakers fell off the back of the computer when I was moving the desk, so the speakers aren't normally down there. Gotta put Conan on ebay - not kidding. I sold several of those identical postcards a while ago and I think this is my last one. He is getting ready to start his new show next month so I better get it listed soon.

Remember that little ugly thing I bought the other week for .50? I put it up on ebay and it currently has a $29.99 bid - and of course I had a typo in my listing. Par for the course. Here is the ebay listing if you want to see how it does.

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Another day, another trip to the dump

And this time my car started right up! I've been taking a garbage bag full of old toys to the dump almost every day this week (we don't pay for trash pick-up, we do it ourselves for free). I know better, but so many of Jacob's toys had batteries in them that corroded and into the trash they went. Toys that have a gazillion pieces? In the trash.

Next week DH and I will tackle the bookcase area - the thrifts will be closed early in the week (so they don't accept donations when they closed) but I remembered that the library takes book/video/cd donations anytime they are open.

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Toilet Humor Gag = Republican?

I don't like to talk politics on the blog since, of course, political stuff is soooo boring (unless it has to do with me of course). Belated thank you to all who voted for me during my (grassroots campaign back in 2008. Yardsales on the White House lawn apparently will have to wait.

Anyhow, today I was selling my vintage kitschy toilet seat cover on ebay and I searched to see what category it would fall into so I type 3 words that describe it (toilet humor gag) and here's the suggestions:

Look at the 4th entry on the list - Collectibles/Historical Memorabilia/Republican. Hmmmm. I resemble that remark!

Monday, October 04, 2010

Yardsale Bait & Switch

This is always disappointing at a yardsale - you see a box for a great item (like a Kitchenaid mixer)

and you open up the box and this is what you see:

I took the above pics at one of the church yardsales I went to a few weeks ago. Yardsales last Saturday were just so-so. I don't *need* another kitchenaid, since my $8 avocado green Kitchenaid kicks butt but if I found another one cheap, I would buy to resell or give to a family member.

I am embarking on a serious decluttering operation. Aye yi yi. DH and I were *discussing* my computer area which has turned into a gigantic clutter magnet over the past 10 years. Maybe if I'm ever drunk while blogging, I'll show you the "before" picture. It's something. I told him it would all be gone by December 31. And I think I did say 2010. I have a feeling a lot of it is going to be re-donated back to the thrift store. Today I took some random Nintendo & Super Nintendo games I still had (that Jacob doesn't play with) to our local Play N Trade and got a $22 credit for the stuff.

Another project is cleaning/decluttering Jacob's room. I mean really, don't most 10 year old boys have stacks and stacks of baby chunky board books in their room? I haven't had time to go thru it (Walgreens keeps calling my name). Plus, if I get rid of them, that means he's growing up too fast. Today I took a bunch of paper stuff/cardboard to the landfill for paper recycling. It including a stack of play money - I wonder if anyone will be fooled in looking at it. I know I would.

Sunday it rained all day here. But Saturday was sunny and I took Jacob down to some boat race thing that was going on nearby. I really didn't get why Geico has expensive racing boats (I looked for the State Farm boat, but alas, it was no where to be found.) With all the Geico stuff, I was hoping to see Maxwell, but again, disappointment.

So instead we had to settle for the gecko:

p.s. Oh I forgot to mention - after my trip to the recycling center, I went to start my car to leave and it was dead. I got someone to give me a jump start but I had it with that 5 year old battery. We went and bought a new battery tonight.

Friday, October 01, 2010

Sale on Pringles

Not a whole lot going on here at the castle. My grocery store is having a sale on Pringles. Regularly a $1 a can but now they are having a sale where I can get 10 for only $10. Gee, how can I pass that bargain up?

I saw these vintage retro lamps at my thrift and deep down I really wanted them, but the cheapskate in me knew I wasn't getting them for a few reasons: I don't have a mid-century modern house and I didn't want to spend money on new lampshades. (But I do plan on using my vintage Lane chest). They weren't marked but I'm sure they were cheap. And another reason - older lamps like this scare me since the cords are old and no way am I gonna re-wire something. Re-wiring stuff is not my thing. Oh well, I hope they find a nice home.

For those of you who sell on eBay, starting today you can list 100 items per month for the next 3 months - with no listing fees (check ebay for specific details).