this past friday, chloe and i had a yard sale.
have you ever had one? if so, you know
how much effort it takes to put one together.
before i began preparing for it, i had grand
aspirations of having everything priced,
fending off the early birds, and selling it all!
the craigslist post and the signs we put up the
night before advertised the sale as beginning at
by 11:00 a.m., one person had haggled
me down to $3 for 27 jars of testors paints.
by noon, i began to think i had wasted a lot of
time for nothing.
up. though it didn't come close to my expectations
of hundreds of people and hundreds of dollars
made, i did come away with a few wonderful
experiences and learned a few things.
1) giving things away isn't costly and a waste of money
since we weren't about to bring it all back in the house, g. and i went next door to our neighbor and told her she could take whatever she wanted. she chose some books, including a copy of david sedaris's me talk pretty one day, a sisal rug, and a messenger bag she said the boys would get a lot of use out of. all these things had been sitting in our basement forgotten for months. the rest went to big brothers big sisters. to know that someone will actually use these things makes me wish i'd done this sooner.
2) from here on out, we'll buy less because we don't need as much as we thought
how many candleholders do we really need? i told g. the next thing i buy will be something to replace something that's old, like a new cardi-jacket, though i'll need to have a few more yard sales before i add this to my wardrobe.
3) objects that commemorate a life i aspire to but do not have are a burden
there are many, but a perfect example of this is the pilates ball i bought five years ago and used only once. i want to tone my abs and increase my strength, i really do. really? what about the pilates abs rower i purchased last april? turns out no one wanted either one, so i kept both. in this case, the guilt continues.
i designed jewelry that was picked up by upscale boutiques and anthropologie, and i loved doing it. but that time in my life is over. i have other interests now like photography and writing. all the drawers of beads and lace remind me of this. not that that's a bad thing, but why hold onto these things when people like amy (my last customer) could make her own necklaces from a collection of vintage czech nailhead glass beads?
5) i love talking to people
this was the highlight of the whole day and gave me a chance to meet our neighbors and others who share some of the same interests...like krystal who bought some of g.'s screenwriting books for a friend moving to l.a....and the girl who bought our t.v. combination vcr so her boyfriend could watch his old anime videotapes.
when you take the time to get out there and listen to peoples' stories, you realize the world is a wonderful place.