Words & Banter

Is It Ironic To Say ... You Can’t Put A Price Tag On A Garage Sale?

Photo by michaelmjc on iStock

Want to declutter and make a little extra money? Garage sales are a great way, but they can be so much more … as Red pointed out to Black last year …





Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io

Thanks for the accounting of your garage sale. But, given how many hours you spent preparing for it, and then the actual sale itself, did you calculate how much you “earned” on a $/hour basis?


red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

No, all I know is that it seemed to take forever to go through everything in Mom’s house and decide what to keep, what to sell, what to donate. And what to trash. As far as the garage sale, I’ll give you your half the next time I see you.


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io

Keep my half. You did all the work. I did not even offer to help.


red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

And that was a big help. Thank you.


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io

Obviously, you must be exhausted because you are making no sense.

red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io


Sorry, but I have a specific way of running garage sales, and the last thing I needed was another “cook in the kitchen” .

Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io


Not a good analogy as “cook” is a four-letter word that I do not use.

red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io


Cute. But seriously, I knew if I had asked you to help, you would’ve. But I can only imagine how you’d have reacted when you first saw all the stuff for sale. Especially as I treat garage sales as a way to get rid of items that I know have very little value. I’m not trying to maximize the money I make; I’m just trying to make the stuff “go away”. In fact, I don’t even put prices on them.

Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io


That all makes sense. Except for not having everything pre-priced. That would drive me crazy. How do you know what to charge people?

red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io


It’s an experience thing and another reason why I didn’t ask you to help. I have a sense of prices, but not something I could quantify in advance. When someone arrives, I tell them that everything’s cheap and give them an example. They usually look at me like, “Wow, she means it.” And then I tell them to collect what they want and that I promise to give them a good price. And I do.

Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io


Is that why you and Mom never had joint garage sales? I cannot imagine she would let you determine prices on the spot.

red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io


Actually, she’s the one who “taught” me not to price things. That if someone picks up something or you see them looking at it, they’re interested. And that’s all you need to know. Where we differed was in how much to charge. To her, it was fun, but also a way to make money. To me, a garage sale isn’t my retirement account. It’s my way to get rid of stuff, especially big, bulky stuff.

Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io


In other words, people are paying you to haul off your trash. Or, save you trips taking stuff to your local thrift stores.

red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io


Exactly. Although I still take a lot of items to thrift stores that would probably sell for a decent price at a garage sale because I believe in what they’re doing, and I know that my donations make a difference. But I forgot how fun a garage sale can be, meeting people and laughing, just making connections, and knowing that someone will now enjoy and/or use your things. Or, in this case, Mom’s things.

Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io


Is there a particular age group that came to your garage sale?


red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

It was truly a mix of people. Not counting the kids tagging along with their parents, which reminded me of when the girls would set up a lemonade stand to benefit Make-A-Wish at my garage sales years ago, they ranged from 20-somethings to senior citizens. But I’m almost afraid to ask why you asked.


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io

I will not get into studies and statistics, but younger people are really into the environment and reusing older things, especially clothing (which is one of the three “new” R’s – reduce – reuse – recycle ). So, garage sales, along with thrift stores, are becoming more popular than ever.


red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

I love it! And the idea of so many of Mom’s things, now that she’s passed, will get to live on and be enjoyed by others.


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io

At the risk of sounding like a MasterCard commercial , there are some things that money cannot buy. Like sentimental value and fond memories.


red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

I know. Which is why the process of sorting everything was so time-consuming. Interestingly, when that came up in conversation during the garage sale, so many people could relate and then shared their own stories. It was as if they wanted me to know that Mom’s things were getting a good home.


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io

Well, if you add that to the cash you made, it sounds like a very successful garage sale. Hopefully, the next sale, being an estate sale with larger and higher-priced items, will be as successful. And, although I tried to get you to use a professional “estate sale” company that would do everything for you, I am beginning to understand why you decided to do it yourself.


red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

The hardest part was culling and organizing, and there was no way I’d let strangers go through all of Mom’s things. And the internet makes “advertising” the sale and posting items online very easy. All-in-all, there’s no reason we can’t do it ourselves.


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io

We?!


red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

Yes, because your ability to combine photos into a single image and correct my grammar is important. But your spreadsheets will be critical.


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io

Now, that I can do.
Design by Sawyer Pennington, Underlying photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash


red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

As much of a history buff as I am, I’m embarrassed to admit that for a long time, I didn’t know March was Women’s History Month. But now that I do, I’m amazed by all the inspirational stories of women’s remarkable achievements.


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io

Too bad Natasha and Sawyer do not still live at home; it would be fun to start a conversation by asking them what women they find inspiring.


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I already know who they would pick. The first woman to race the road course at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. And I’d have to agree with them. Your Ferrari racing has made an impact on so many people. But especially girls.


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io

Until you mentioned it several years ago, I never thought about that. In the 1970s, I was one of the few women in business school. I then made a career in the male-dominated oil and gas industry. I am used to being a “token” female.


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Trust me. I watch people whenever we’ve done speaking engagements. It’s predictable ... we put up the family tree, and Natasha and Sawyer get awws, but your two racecars get everyone’s attention.
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Image by filipefrazao on iStock

Were you like Red and shocked when the actor Chadwick Boseman died at the age of 43 after battling colon cancer for years? Cancer isn’t only for older people, and recent studies show more people under 50 are getting cancer. (Doctors aren’t sure why but suspect it may be due to less physical activity, more highly processed foods, and new toxins.) That’s why cancer screenings are more important than ever!

February may be Cancer Prevention Month – but we need to do it all year! Every year. And is why we’re rerunning last year’s post …



red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

I know that cancer isn’t the “death sentence” it used to be when we were growing up, but it’s still a very scary word. Especially if it’s heard “close to home”.


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io

When we were young, the word was rarely said. And if it was, it was whispered or referred to as the “ c-word.”


red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

Kind of like when I had my two miscarriages. No one wanted even to acknowledge, let alone talk about, them. Which made it all the more difficult to get through it, although intellectually, I knew it was not uncommon.


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io

Unfortunately, neither is cancer. It is the second-leading cause of death in the world, surpassed only by heart disease. But, at least, it is no longer a taboo subject.


red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

Please don’t make this about numbers. It’s about people. Which you should know. I’m sure you remember when Daddy was diagnosed with parotid gland cancer , which luckily was treatable. And I’ve had skin cancer, although I was very fortunate, it was caught early and easily treated.
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Image by farakos on iStock

Even though Red’sthe warm and fuzzy one and Black’s extremely pragmatic, we both think of hearts on Valentine’s Day. Just not in quite the same way …



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Happy Valentine’s Day. And before you say anything, yes, I know you don’t celebrate holidays, so just humor me.


Black's HeadBlack assets.rebelmouse.io

But, I do “celebrate” February being American Heart Month since heart disease is the leading cause of death – for both men and women.


red headred head assets.rebelmouse.io

Gee, that’s one way to turn a “fun” holiday into a real downer. Today’s supposed to be about letting people you love and care about know that you’re thinking of them. Think Hallmark cards, squishy teddy bears, chocolate hearts.
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