Tag Archives: garage sale

Road Tripping

The yard sale was not a huge success this time.

We knew going in, that having it on the next to last weekend of the month had the potential to be not-so-beneficial.

We were right.

So, we’ve boxed up all the odds and ends and decided to try again next month. I made about $300 that weekend (mostly from a couple of items I sold on Facebook), so that was a good amount to take with me on the road trip my boyfriend and I had spent so many weeks planning.

And what a memorable trip it was!

We spent a day in Washington D.C., a day in Philadelphia, two days in the Catskill Mountains, a day in New York City, drove through Amish country, and took a couple days in Gettysburg before journeying back home.

I’m always amazed at how well my guy and I mesh when we spend significant amounts of time together. Aside from the occasional bickering over the other person’s driving skills, I’d say the trip was quite serene–even despite the constant moving we were doing. The scenery was breath-taking, and it was so exciting to see so many places we’d only seen in movies or read about in books for so many years.

We didn’t love NYC like we thought we would, probably because of the crowds, traffic, and stench. Instead, we were pleasantly surprised at how quickly and repeatedly we fell in love with Pennsylvania. Such an awesome state to visit! Our goals on this trip were definitely achieved. We got to see The Felice Brothers at the first ever Felice County Fair, where even Simone Felice joined in the fun for the day (most pleasant surprise of the trip), and we got a good sample of many places in order to see which ones we care to revisit in the future.

And we did a little wine-tasting and purchasing at a little winery in the Catskills. One of my favorite experiences.

We also learned a lot about ourselves. We both realize that our time is not always spent on things that grow us. Of course this can’t always be controlled, but we definitely see that traveling together is something that has to be a top priority for us. We know that we have to make time for it in our lives. We both love and crave it so much.

We’re already thinking about where we’d like to visit next. San Francisco, maybe?

We shall see!

What were some fun places you’ve traveled to in the past or will travel to in the future? I’d love to hear your suggestions!

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Tomorrow Is A Big Day

Our yard sale is tomorrow.

I’m so excited.  Once again, I’m amazed at the amount of junk we were able to uncover.  (I’ll post a pic of my mom’s dining room after this post so you can get an idea of what we’re working with, here.)

My parents have a shed in their back yard.  In this shed were tons of items we were too afraid to encounter before.  But a couple of weeks ago, my mom and I put on our big girl panties and slayed the beast.

Childhood papers, old Hot Wheels cars and race tracks, Barbies galore (including way more accessories than I care to admit), Legos, board games (that never got played), hunting gear (brother’s), train sets, tools, car detailing junk, life jackets, beach chairs, bikes, wheelbarrows, home repair items, Christmas decorations, sports equipment . . . the list goes on.

My dad is still not ready to part with a large portion of his tools and things (even though, I really think he should and have told him so), and my brother’s more occupied with other activities than going through each item he owns to down-size.  That’s OK, though.  Me and mom did what we could and made huge progress.

I’m loving Facebook’s yard sale groups.  I’ve made close to $500 just in the past few weeks from using it.  So awesome!  I’m hoping to make a few hundred tomorrow as well.  New York is less than a week away, and I want to use the extra cash towards making memories instead of holding on to the things in my life that I’m getting zero use, enjoyment, or benefit out of.

I’m ready for great things, and I don’t want to be weighed down by my junk when the time comes.  I love seeing cleared spaces instead of feeling claustrophobic in my own house or car.  I love how quickly I can CLEAN my house with less junk laying around.  I love that I could wash every dish in my house by hand in 20 minutes or less.  I love that I only have to do about 2 loads of laundry per week.  I love that I’m obtaining more and more time to do the things that make me happy.

I love my life, and I love this journey.

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Yard Sale Success!

What a productive weekend!

My mother and I had been planning this yard sale since before Christmas, and we were so glad for the weekend to finally arrive.

We decided to do a Friday night sale, starting at 8 pm and lasting until whenever the crowd stopped coming in, as well as the traditional Saturday morning sale.  Friday evening, people started showing up at about 5:30.  We were so busy, we were unable to finish unpacking several of our boxes.

We managed, though, with the help of my dad and my cousins, who also contributed some items.  They’re my favorite people to throw one of these things with.  We always have the most fun.

Between all of us, we made over $1,000.

I find this hard to believe, considering we’ve had multiple yard sales over the past couple of years, and always think we’ve gotten rid of everything there is to get rid of.  I distinctly remember at our last yard sale saying, “Well, this will probably be our last one.  We’ve finally gotten rid of almost everything we don’t need or use.”

We couldn’t have been more wrong.

I was reminded of a quote from–don’t laugh–Dawson’s Creek:

Letting go isn’t a one-time thing.  It’s something you have to do over and over, everyday.

Such true words! I can’t even tell you how eye-opening and freeing the experience was!

Normally, I would hang on to the items that didn’t sell, in hopes of selling them at our next yard sale….but this time….

I just wanted to be rid of it.

Don’t get me wrong–I did save a few things that I can get quite a bit of cash for on Ebay or what have you.  But all the other stuff?  Gone, baby, gone.

My mom and I took 5 large tubs of left-over items to Goodwill and will be taking about 2 tubs worth of clothing to a local charity through the Methodist church.  We also ended up with a box of books (novels, textbooks, music books) that didn’t sell–which will be donated to the local library–as well as a box of religious books that we will donate to our church.  Last, we have about 2 tubs worth of antiques that we will try to sell to a local antique store.  We’ve done this in the past with a few items and have been very pleased with what we were paid for them.

So, all in all, the weekend was a success.

Our loads are lighter, and we are a little bit richer….in more ways than one.

And, my mom finally got her dining room back.

🙂

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Done….For Now.

Once again, I’ve reached the end of a simplifying cycle.

In less than 2 weeks, my mother and I will be holding, yet another, garage sale.

This time, what we do not sell will most likely be immediately donated.  (In the past, I’ve kept these left-over items for a future garage sale, but am now at a point in my life where I just want to be rid of it.)

I would donate everything immediately–and part of me thinks this would be more rewarding–but am sort of in need of a little extra cash at the moment.  The only items that will not be donated are ones that can be sold online for a respectable amount, such as antiques and collectibles.

Right now, my parents’ dining room is completely over-run with our junk.  I couldn’t believe the amount of stuff we were able to let go of….AGAIN!  After all, this is not our first rodeo.  It seriously looks like an episode of Hoarders!

As I’ve gone through almost everything I have–except for a couple of large stacks of records I’ll attack this week (the vinyl kind, not the paperwork kind)–I really feel satisfied.  Like I’ve finally arrived.

However, based on my previous experience, I know that this feeling is only temporary.  This is just the finish line for this particular layer of the process.  In a very short matter of time, I will find more that I know I can, and will want to, do without.

I love that about this lifestyle.  I feel like I’m constantly growing and changing, learning new things about myself every single day.  It’s an ongoing journey to be content with less and to really learn the meaning of enough.

But….I think I’m getting a little bit closer.

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Nice to Meetcha.

After some thought on the matter, I’ve finally decided to join the blogging world.

This thought started sometime in 2011, around the time I decided to become a minimalist.  I started a “note” on Facebook and kept updating it as I felt necessary.  Obviously not the best method for online journaling, I finally broke down and went the blog route.

As I stated above, my life has been changing recently in a very minimalist direction.  I feel like I need to copy/paste my previous Facebook note (or at least the juicier parts of it) for you to grasp my beginning in this journey.  Sorry this post is longer than you probably want to read.  I’ll try to keep it short and put my biggest points in bold.

🙂

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i hate new year’s resolutions. i never do them. it’s lame to me. why not make changes anytime of the year. if you see something that you need to do differently, don’t waste another minute. DO IT NOW! you never know how many days you have left.

i guess that’s why i chose now to make a change. it really has nothing at all to do with the new year, but more to do with the realization of how unpredictable life can be. you see, my family and i lost someone very close to us at the very end of december. the worst part is, we were told everything would be ok. he’ll be fine. then four days later, it happened.

it made me really step back and evaluate my life. what’s important?

now, if anyone knows me at all, they probably know that i’m extremely organized. i definitely have a case of ocd, which i’m pretty sure was passed down to me from my mother. i have a schedule for almost everything. i can’t live without my day planner and my innumerable amount of rubbermaid containers. everything has a place. i’ve always seen this as a good thing in my life. however, as of late, i see it as a handicap. in all this organization, i’ve also come to be somewhat of a hoarder. not as bad as some, i am aware, but a hoarder nonetheless.

after the funeral was over, i was back at work, and the separation from my family began to sink in, i felt an intense urge to get rid of everything. it was suffocating. i could not simply go through my days ignoring this inner pull for change. i couldn’t go back to the clutter that had become my life—my “normal”. i wanted my life to consist of things that mattered, and only those things.

it started with going through my old clothes; now it’s grown to EVERYTHING in my line of sight. i’ve gone on this raging rampage of tossing all of the trash out of my life.

i’ve always been sentimental when it comes to possessions, not for money reasons or the-more-stuff-you-have-the-happier-you-are reasons, but because i attach memories and experiences with my stuff. so, i started googling ways to emotionally let go of these things. after all, it’s the memories and experiences themselves that really matter. not the “stuff” to prove it happened.

as i researched and researched and researched, i kept coming across these recurring themes of the joys of having less, less is more, cling to what matters and let go of what doesn’t…. and it was like i finally figured out what i wanted to do. I WANTED TO BE A MINIMALIST! now, maybe not in the most extreme way. for example, i don’t plan on trading out my bed for a sleeping bag on the floor anytime soon.

minimalism isn’t about deprivation. instead, it’s about finding the things that truly make you happy and filling your life with them.

i’m still in the early stages of this journey, and i’ve read that it takes a LOT of time and energy to reach a goal of this magnitude. it’s a complete lifestyle change. it takes total honesty with yourself, a clear head, and the ability to let go. no amount of me releasing my possessions can even hold a candle to the loss that my family and i are experiencing now. knowing this makes me hopeful. i hope to, bit by bit and piece by piece, simplify my life only to the things that are important.

in reducing my life, i will be increasing it.

i’m so excited about this! everyday i find more things that are frivolous in my life, and the more i toss, the more i WANT to toss. i can’t wait for my personal surroundings to be a tangible representation of what’s inside my heart. 

if there’s anything i want to do here, other than declutter my own life, it’s to influence others to follow my lead. to quote leo babauta, who put together a great little book i’m working through entitled “the simple guide to a minimalist life”, we all need to ”learn the concept of Enough……and figure out what makes [us] happy.” after we do that, we should then “get rid of the rest, so [we] have room for those important things.”

“be content with what you have; rejoice in the way things are. when you realize there is nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you.”  -lao tzu

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I hope that you see where I’m coming from, now, and can maybe even relate to me on some level or another.

This really is a process that works in layers.  Since beginning this journey, I’ve probably been responsible for putting together about 5 garage sales to declutter my life.  While having one, I always feel like I’ve achieved my end goal, only to realize later that there is still so much left to be rid of!  I’m actually in the process of planning another one right now.

When having a garage sale, I usually have the help of my wonderful parents, but especially my mother.  She’s my best friend and has been on board with this whole idea from Day 1.  I’m so happy to have inspired her in this way!  Her excitement about streamlining her life is contagious.

Well, there you have it.  I think I’ve said enough for my first blog post.

This should give you guys something to chew on for a couple of days until my next entry.

While reading, have you been thinking of things you can do without?

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