The White Cottage

MY DAYS IN RETIREMENT

So! Make Me An Offer. A Garage Sale and Lemonade Stand Success

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Finally had that garage sale July 2nd. Had all that “stuff” stored downstairs for close to a year and I was so relieved the day had finally arrived to dispose of it – or at least what I could. Naturally, the worse part of any garage sale is hauling all of that stuff upstairs, arranging and sorting things and then determining what price to ask. I’ve been told that I always under-sell myself, but in my opinion I’m at least getting rid of things I no longer use or want. I’d rather make a few bucks (bonus money in my hands) before donating to the Canadian Diabees Foundation (Clothesline) and then sending the remainder items to the dump. It’s a win-win situation – money for me, a donation to a good cause and less stuff going to the landfill.

When planning the garage sale I had invited along anyone who wanted to join. I really didn’t have all that much stuff and the more the merrier. Bonnie joined in with her “good ” stuff, Gail tagged along with her beaded jewellery and Liz followed with her leftover Tupperware items from when she was a representative. All four of us managed to fill the driveway which makes our little sale all that much bigger and enticing. However, we also managed to have two more “little ones” take advantage of our possible customers.

The Friday before Nat and I were watching as the two new little kids across the street (together with their Mom) were setting up a Lemonade Stand. Both children were cute as buttons as they sat in their little lawn chairs watching the traffic pass them and their sign by. Dominion Road being fairly busy and with the Friendship Festival going on in Fort Erie, it was fairly obvious that no one was stopping by to purchase a delicious cookie or brownie and wash it down with an ice cold lemonade or iced tea. After returning home from a couple of errands, the kids were still perched under the big tree on their lawn with little faces looking completely neglected. I couldn’t resist – so I ran over and introduced myself. I told them how I was having a garage sale the next morning and the two of them would be more than welcome to join me and my sisters, if their parents approved. At that point their Mother appeared and I, again, introduced myself and retold her my plan. She was thrilled and thought it was a great idea. Her daughter, Brooklyn, was thrilled but dear little brother, Joseph, wasn’t really into this whole thing. I’m thinking he got roped into it by little sister so he could help pour drinks, etc.

With the arrival of Saturday morning and after getting everything organized and displayed on our tables, Gail, Bonnie, Liz and I sat back to wait for the bucks to come rollin’ in. Once the two kids were up and at at ’em, they soon joined us on the lawn with their stand of cookies, brownies, lemonade and ice tea. I grabbed our beach umbrella we purchased during our trips to Florida, so the two little ones could have some shade from what was turning out to be a very hot day. Their Mom grabbed an umbrella stand and the two kids were soon in business. Gail, Bonnie and Liz, being the chocolate lovers that they are, purchased some brownies and as the day progressed Joseph and Brooklyn were soon rolling in the dough. Their little business was quite successful and Mom had to pop across the road to get a couple more jugs of lemonade and ice tea, which was a very good sign. It was so nice that our garage sale customers took advantage of the cold drinks on a hot day while out spending their hard earned nickels, dimes, quarters, Loonies and Toonies. What more could you ask for – a great find, a cold drink and a delicious snack.

The two little ones lasted a fairly good time but soon packed things up by midday. The rest of  us were soon discovering that the trail of customers was trickling down to a drip and because of the extreme heat, we decided to pack our things up around 2:30. Each one of us had at least made a buck or two and along with having a few laughs, the day had been a pretty good success. I wasn’t disappointed in my sales – $190.00 – and most of the items I wanted to sell were, in fact, sold. The leftovers were soon stored in our dining room so I could sort through them to see what could be donated and what would be disposed of.

I’ve said it before and I’ll probably say it again – but this is going to be MY last garage sale. I’ll join in anyone else’s sale with what little items I can gather, but as far as hosting another sale, I’m all spent out. Sorting out and pricing each item, setting up tables and running back and forth for snacks, drinks, etc., along with getting up at 6:00 AM is exhausting. I’m just getting too old for it all – but I have to admit any money I make is such a great bonus and is awfully tempting whenever Nat and I come across something that we no longer want or need. Nat looks at me and says “What do you want to do with it?” I turn to him and without fail “Oh, just keep it for the next garage sale”.

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Author: Twila

Born and raised in a small town in Ontario, Canada, with 5 sisters and a brother. Now retired, my husband and I travel, play golf and am slowly renovating our new (old) home. After my kidney transplant in 1999, we've learned to enjoy life to the fullest. Nat and I have driven across Canada, taken an Alaskan cruise and drove home via the Northern United States. We've also been to Mexico, the Caribbean, the East Coast of Canada and Cape Breton. We've done the "Snowbird" thing, having lived in Destin, Florida for a couple of months of the year. In 2007 we changed our travel plans in order to move into and renovate our new "old" home, but hope to someday get back on the road again. We also love returning to Scotland (Nat's origin of birth) to visit his family and tour the Highlands and surrounding Isles.

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