10 Tips on Having a Succesful Yard/Garage Sale

10 Tips Yard Garage Sale

Despite the very short amount of time we spent preparing for our yard sale yesterday, it was actually pretty successful. The weather was perfect and we had a lot of traffic. Our main objective was to help our son raise money for his trip to London but in the meantime we were also able to offload some things that were cluttering our house.

Our son was also blessed with items to sell donated by family and friends. That also contributed to some of the money he raised. He is getting closer every day towards fully funding his trip.

Here are some tips I can offer anyone wanting to hold a garage sale in the near future.

1 – Advertise in your local newspaper, Craigslist, and local Facebook groups – In this digital age we often assume that not very many of us subscribe or read newspapers. Majority of the shoppers we had yesterday said they found our garage sale through our advertisement in the newspaper.

2 – Put up signs. – Aside from customers that live by the newspaper for yard/garage sale ads, we did have some customers that said they stumbled across our yard sale signs.

3 – Display some items so that they are visible from the street. We live up on a hill and we had our yard sale up on the top in our yard. We displayed a few bigger items in our driveway so that people could see that we were having a yard sale. It may have helped if we also placed some smaller more attractive items on our driveway.

4 – Have small bills on hand for change in a cash box (with someone watching it at all times) or wear an apron with pockets for your change.

5 – Have plastic bags and extra boxes to package up customer purchases.

6 – Price each item or place a price point for groups of items (for example: We had a box full of hot wheels and small toys that we sold for $.25 each.) Having prices on items will deter customers who are looking for a great bargain from giving you a really low-ball price.

7 – Put away your phones when customers are around. I walked out of the house to find my husband and son on their phones when there were customers walking around in our yard. Strike up a conversation with the customers. Some customers may find it a turn off to see you on your phone while they are shopping and just leave. You should be ready to assist anyone with questions, just like an employee in a store should be.

8 – Start preparing for your yard sale months in advance. Go through your garage, storage, shed, closets and shelves to find items that have not been any use to you or your family in the last year. We spent 2 weeks going through things and we definitely have more to go through and declutter.

9 – Have a plan on what you will be doing with the items that aren’t sold after your yard sale. Will they go to the thrift store or maybe consignment shop? Do you want to hang on to the leftover items for a future yard sale? Could you possibly sell some of the items through Craigslist or local yard/garage sale forums online?

If you are hanging on to items for a future sale, plan where you will be storing your items so that they can easily be retrieved when needed. Otherwise, plan to close up your yard sale early enough to take to your leftover items to a local thrift shop.

10 – Do not plan any strenuous activities after a yard sale. After the very long day, you will be tired. Shower, make some popcorn, pop in a movie and relax.

We had a dinner to go to yesterday and it took all of our energy to get ready and out the door. My husband and I tried to take a 30 minute nap. Our little one said, “No way” to nap time. We each even had a cup of coffee before heading out the door but it was of no avail. We lasted a short time at the dinner and said our goodbyes regretfully earlier than we really wanted to.

Teenagers are little more resilient. They were out the door as soon as things were put away and went gallivanting around town for 6 hours looking for Pokemon stops. Sigh. Oh, to be young again.

 

 

 

 

Yard Sale Craziness

Getting ready for a yard sale can be chaotic in itself. Getting ready for a yard sale in a week is ridiculously crazy. Our boys and I have been gathering things for a yard sale fundraiser for my son. He was selected along with other high school Drum Majors across the country to go on a trip to London to perform in their New Year’s Day Parade. We are quite excited for him but a little anxious on the amount he needs to raise to go on the trip.

He has been working odd jobs and has raised some money but he has a ways to go. We clearly stated from the beginning that we will help as much as we can but that the funds he needs to take the trip will need to be raised by him through work or by fundraisers driven by him. This weekend’s garage sale is his first fundraiser.

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Luckily, we have wonderful friends who have volunteered to bring by donations for his yard sale and we have boys to do the set up and tear down. It is the cleaning, gathering and pricing that will be very challenging for us. We have the next two days to prep. I’m doing my best to stay positive and productive.

I have found several blogs about yard sales that have been very helpful. I especially love the checklists provided. I’ll include some of the links below and hopefully they can be of some help to you if you’re planning a garage/yard sale in the near future. I’ll be sure to put something together after we’re done to let you all know what worked for us.

What are some of your favorite garage/yard sale tips?

http://www.nogettingoffthistrain.com/frugal/tips-successful-garage-sale/

http://blog.delightfulorder.com/2012/06/hosting-more-organized-garage-sale.html

http://pureandsimpleorganizing.com/blog/item/165-yard-sale-series-getting-started
http://pureandsimpleorganizing.com/blog/item/170-yard-sale-series-week-before-the-sale

Rummage Sale Gardening Bargains

Saturday was a day of treasure hunting and gardening. Our high school marching band, flag team and drill team members held a rummage sale to raise money for an upcoming trip and I was able to find some really great pieces for my gardening.

We purchased two beautiful planters for $10 each, some cute mini ceramic shoes (for succulent terrariums) for a $1 each, a teapot and ceramic mouse with flower (for my mini garden), another planter for my new indoor spider plant, a lavender and a succulent plant. What wonderful things you can find at rummage sales!

Here are our creations from yesterday after our trip to the greenhouse. We had lots of fun creating these. The first two pictures are of the succulent terrariums we created using the ceramic shoes. The last two pictures are of the container gardens we created using the planters.

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The following container gardens that we created were inspired by an article from southernliving.com.

http://www.southernliving.com/home-garden/gardens/creative-container-gardens

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We first filled the bottom of the pots with pebbles and then filled it with the plants and Miracle-Grow Moisture Control Potting Mix. I’m hoping these plants will survive till Fall. I did ask an employee at the greenhouse about the spider plant and fern that we purchased for the pots. She mentioned that I should bring them in when it gets cold. I will do my best to not to let them die before bringing them in. Wish me luck!

 

 

Stop to Smell the Flowers

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“Some think love can be measured by the amount of butterflies in their tummy. Others think love can be measured in bunches of flowers, or by using the words ‘for ever.’ But love can only truly be measured by actions. It can be a small thing, such as peeling an orange for a person you love because you know they don’t like doing it.”
~Marian Keyes

Doing little things for each other can make a huge difference in the world we live in today. There is much chaos, so much more distractions and pressures around us that sometimes we all just need to bring ourselves back down to earth and show a little kindness in our daily lives.

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“You’re only here for a short visit. Don’t hurry, don’t worry. And be sure to smell the flowers along the way.”
~Walter Hagen

I’m often guilty of not taking the time to “smell the flowers.” My biggest fault is taking on so much more than I can handle. I’ve always had a hard time saying no when help is needed. I still do but I’m getting a little better about knowing what my limits are. This will give me much time to focus on those who are really important to me.

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Yesterday we happily took the time to run to the Brothers Greenhouses in Port Orchard again to see their cute little Hobbit House and beautiful flowers and plants. These pictures of the flowers were taken from their greenhouses. I was able to stop and “smell the flowers”.

Note: While we were at the Brothers Greenhouses we ran into some family friends that stopped in to check it out after seeing my blog. I’m very happy to see that I was able to positively share a spot. Thank you for reading!

 

 

 

Short Summer Bucket List

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Summer is flying by so quickly. We are now almost at the halfway point of our summer vacation. It has been quite a busy one for our family and we are loving every minute of it. We held a party and have had several gatherings. We are also very blessed to have had many visitors (family) come in from out of town.

While we are having a great time making some beautiful new memories, it is time to focus on getting things done around the house. I am also hoping to get a few more items crossed off my short bucket list before the summer is gone.

Not so fun to-do list.

  1. Get house painted.
  2. Replace furnace.
  3. De-clutter and have a yard sale.
  4. Yard work.

Fun Summer Bucket List

  1. Take pictures of some eagles.
  2. Go on a R.A.O.K. (Random Act of Kindness) adventure with my youngest son.
  3. Go on a wine tasting adventure with my husband.
  4. Have a movie night outdoors.
  5. Plant a miniature garden.
  6. Go on a road trip to the Oregon coast.
  7. Craft (make cards, color, paint, create things for miniature garden).
  8. Read 10 books.

Do you have a Summer Bucket List? If so, what are some of the items on your Summer Bucket List?

Here are a few links to some really great Summer Bucket Lists. These list are pretty in depth examples.

https://findingtimetofly.com/summer-bucket-list/?pp=0

http://www.savvysouthernbelle.com/2016/05/summer-bucket-list.html

100 Fun Ideas For Your Summer Bucket List

 

Long Lashes, Wispy Hair

This is for a weekly photo challenge. All my children were blessed with long lashes like my husband’s. Love that you can see the details of all the brown specks in my daughter’s eyes in this picture.

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Day Out Feast

Every once in a while I’ll take our youngest son out for a treat. Sometimes we go to the movies, to the arcade or we’ll go to a park. Anything we do is always a special time for us but the best outing for us is when we stop to get a dessert after a fun day. It’s always a great time to sit and chat about things while we’re eating our “day out Feast“. One example of a feast for the two of us is milk shakes and fries.

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Since having our daughter 14 months ago, our youngest son has gone through many changes. He’s 11 now and has not only given up the role of being the baby of the house but he has taken a huge step in being the best big brother ever. We are so proud of him. This gives me an even bigger reason to make our days out very special.

This reminds me. It’s time for us to go on another day out together soon.

Feast

 

 

Our Neighborhood Macaroni and Cheese Bake Off

Last night we held our neighborhood Macaroni and Cheese bake off. There were 5 trays of the yummy cheesy goodness. We all did good! We cooked different recipes and they each turned out great! There was some grilled chicken, veggies, brownies and cream puffs to help balance it out. It was fun and everyone enjoyed the tasting but we all ended in carb overload.

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We did this mainly to spend a little more time with each other. Although we live right next to each other we rarely get to chat as much as we’d like to. With all that is going on in the world and within our own country I feel a much bigger need to have a closer relationship with our neighbors. It’s so important to have that sense of being in a safe community. We are all there to learn from each other and we should all be able to depend on each other should anything arise in the future.

I have to say our neighbors are pretty great to begin with. Most of us have been here for a while. The rest of us moved here within the last couple of years. Yesterday’s gathering was a small gathering but it’s a start to some, hopefully, great traditions.

Do you have good relationships with your neighbors? Does your neighborhood have any great traditions that help to encourage a better sense of community?

Our First Trip to Bloedel Reserve

Our trip today to Bloedel Reserve on Bainbridge Island, Washington was amazing. It was very quiet and serene. The hike was pretty decent in length but it was really neat to see the different landscapes of the Reserve. We especially loved the Japanese house and garden, the ponds, the lookout over the bay, and the wild life.

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We decided to purchase the Friends and Family annual pass so that we can return. It’ll be great to go on “Date Walks” with my husband. It’ll also be great to be able to take visiting family and friends to see the beautiful grounds.

I’m still working on learning how to use my camera. I was a little disappointed that some of my pictures didn’t come out as well as I had hoped. Hopefully with research and practice I’ll be able to return to Bloedel Reserve and take some worthy photos. I hope you enjoy these. They were of the best pictures taken today with my camera and phone.

http://bloedelreserve.org/

 

How to Feed a Family of 6 Without the Restaurant

Having a toddler has made it much more difficult to enjoy eating out as a family. We still go out to eat occasionally with our children but we have been trying to limit ourselves. One of my favorite places to eat at is a local Hawaiian restaurant called Aloha Kitchen in Silverdale, Washington. I often crave eating food from back home and Aloha Kitchen provides some of the best known dishes of Hawaii.

Their Kalua Pork and Cabbage plate (complete with rice and macaroni salad) is my favorite. I’ve made Kalua Pork several times in our oven but it is very time consuming and can be a greasy mess.

A few months ago, we ordered trays of food from their restaurant for our daughters 1st birthday. Our friends and family loved it. This is where I came up with a money saving idea. It will also help save our sanity.

I ordered their largest Kalua Pork and Cabbage party tray for our dinner on Wednesday. It is listed as having 18-25 servings but the tray serves so much more.  After eating dinner, were able to package the rest into eight portions that will serve 5-7. We froze the packages and containers for future dinners. The cost was $125 for the large tray. Therefore, each (5-7 servings) portion cost about $14.

Those who feed their family on $3-$5 per meal may think me crazy but this is a dish I crave for often but I really dislike cooking. The $14 for a dinner to feed our family of 6 is a huge savings compare to what it would cost to take our family out to a restaurant to eat. It would normally cost our family $60-$70 to eat at Aloha Kitchen.

We now have 8 more meals in our freezer. We will just need to cook up some rice and throw some veggies in a pot on the stove. This works great for those last minute meals and it sure beats eating at a fast food restaurant.

We will occasionally eat at Aloha Kitchen without children every once in a while to continue supporting their business. We also love purchasing their gift certificates to give away as gifts to friends and family.

Do you have a favorite dish that a restaurant near you could cook up a huge batch for you to freeze into portions?