Tuesday, April 24, 2007

I Love A Good Deal

I'm not sure how many of you know how cheap I am (hahahahahahahahahahaha!), or how much I love garage sales and clearance racks. Yes, I like nice things, but darned if I'm going to pay for them.

Someone pointed out to me the other day that my minivan has all the bells and whistles. Lo and behold she was right. I have power stuff, air in the back, tinted windows, and apparently the extra 18 inches in the cargo hold. I didn't even know they were extras. Hubs and I have never bought a car off the lot. We've always gone to auction or picked our next vehicle up off a friend who was upgrading. So we've not looked at vans side by side to compare features. We see a good deal, we buy. End of story. I think our van would have been a good buy without the extra features. The extra is the blessing of God, I guess.

"Clean livin'" my friend, Rob, would say.

Or my house. We've wanted to live in this neighborhood basically since we moved to town eight years ago. I drove through it pretty often when we were house shopping just to see what was back here. Our current home sat on the market for months. Vacant a lot of it. The photos on the web were gross. Driving by it wasn't great because there were these discolored shakes over the garage. The price dropped and dropped. We finally looked. Yes, the inside is dated. Yes, heaven knows it was filthy. But it was just what we were looking for as far as size and floorplan. We got it for a song. A high priced we-live-in-Johnson-County-song but a song, non-the-less, considering what it is.

So it should be of no surprise that I get excited for garage sale season to gear up. Last weekend was the first big weekend. On Friday I was pretty conservative. One, not much money. Two, too much stuff. But I got a couple nice birthday gifts for my kids. (New, in the box, don't look at me that way.) Several puzzles. A ton of K'Nex for $2. A space shuttle lamp for the boys. Some Seuss books that didn't look like they'd even been read. School uniforms for Princess. A pretty good sale day.

On Saturday, Princess wanted to go out on a special date with me. Garage sale-ing. She likes the free boxes. We went to a couple sales that were basically a bust. And then....the ultimate free box. A driveway with four boy scout trash bags full of toys and a fisher price toy box (also full of toys) marked "free, must take entire bag." Princess almost couldn't contain herself. (I knew Hubs would be HOT if I brought that many toys home.) While I stood at the sale next door buying an entire new Old Navy wardrobe for myself for $11 (yes I did, 22 items at $0.50 per) I finally gave in and told her she could pick ONE bag, ONLY one, and to be CERTAIN there was something in it she wanted because she would probably only get to keep the one thing and the rest was gong to our youth groups sale this coming weekend. She practically skipped over and found her bag. While I was over there to carry the humongo bag to the van I peeked into the toy box and decided I could stand to take those toys home for the box.

Hubs was HOT. But I tell you, I was really surprised at the quality of the toys that these people were dumping. I don't know the story. It was like they had disowned their grandkids or something. Maybe a child had died and they didn't want the memories? These were nice things. I almost regretted not picking up the other bags. We let the kids play with all of them all day and at the end of the day pick out the things they liked best. We still ended up with more than we needed, but they got rid of a few of their more ratty things in exchange.

Anyway, again it is no surprise that I LOVED Death of a Garage Sale Newbie. As much as I hesitate to admit it, I am so Ginger. He husband wanted her to go out and buy a dress for full price just to be adventurous for him. Whatever she wanted. She couldn't do it. I've done the same thing. Gone out promising myself that I would buy what looked the nicest no matter the cost (within limits, it isn't like I'd go to Nordstrom or anything). I can't do it. I don't pay full price for anything. Except my kids education and even there I get the church member, multi-child, pay a semester in advance discount. But compared to public school, it is still "full price" in my books.

So if you are a good deal junkie like me, you should like this book.



I miss Garage Sale in US I also miss the magic big malls, and of course I miss the US MONEY....
back to the poor life

Chaos-Jamie said...

Ah....but Aline, you get to DANCE! I once had a Brazilian roommate who loved the US money also, but she could dance like nothing I've ever seen. She would laugh hysterically at my pitiful attempts. "No, no, use your hips! Not the shoulders!"

I miss Jane. She gave my life spice.