Saturday, May 17, 2008

Garage Sale Marathon

I got up this morning, as I often do on a Saturday, with the intention of spending my morning cruising the garage sales. I had gone through the newspaper, then entered several of them in a mapping program so my efforts would not be so random. It appeared that the day would have plenty of opportunities because there were not one but two neighborhood sales. The day did not disappoint.

The MIL is still staying with us and her recovery is coming along very nicely. She is still using the walker but has started using a cane more and more. I think she also had her final home health care visit late last week. Chances are she will be back home and independent by next weekend.

As I was preparing for my adventure, I discovered she was awake and wanted to come with me again. The wife was not awake and was quite content to stay snuggled in bed a while longer. Once my MIL was ready, we got into the car, stopped by the ATM and headed for the first neighborhood sale. We spent somewhere around two hours in that one area alone. There were LOTS of sales.

As we started to drive by the same sales and were preparing to move on, the wife called and wanted to join us. We went by the house, picked her up, dropped off what we had purchased so far, and headed for a drive through to get breakfast - hey, we have to keep our priorities straight, here.

From there, we visited a couple sales on the opposite side of town from the neighborhood sale mainly because one of them had advertised a dining room table and the wife is looking for a more suitable table for us. All that activity killed at least another hour.

There is a local restaurant that does a pretty good business selling T-Shirts and other clothing items. Throughout the year, they produce their share of "factory seconds" and today was the day of their annual reject sale. In addition, they were also holding a company garage sale so that's where we went next. The garage sale wasn't anything spectacular but they did have a couple of restaurant tables and more than a few retail and display items (if I needed a cash register for anything, this was the place to get it). The wife grabbed a locking file box, the MIL picked up some nick-nacks, and I ended up at the reject sale and bought three T-shirts. One of the shirts had a 3" tear in the front (that I mended when I got home), one had a couple of "pin" holes in the back (which I also mended), and I'm still looking for the flaw in the third. All this I got for less than the discounted price of even one of the shirts I bought.

Next stop was an estate tag sale. I managed to pick up a set of Big Band vinyl (that's record albums to those of you among the younger CD crowd) and the wife nabbed a scarf.

Once that was done we finally made it to the second neighborhood sale. It wasn't as impressive as the first, partially because it was a smaller neighborhood. I can't recall that I actually bought anything, either.

As the afternoon wore on (yes, we were well into the afternoon by this time), we stopped at one final sale that had advertised dining room tables. They had one of them left but it was no better for our space than the one we currently have.

Finally, we had to go back to the area of the first neighborhood sale with the aid of a friend who has an SUV so we could retrieve a plastic garden shed I picked up for a song. It was very similar to this one but I only paid $20 for mine.

When all was said and done, we had spent six to seven hours trolling garage sales. I don't think I've ever spent that long on that particular activity.

So, what was the tally for what *I* purchased?

Brand new crock pot, never used - $3
Garden shed - $20
Misc. small items - $5
Ionic Breeze Quadra air filter - $5

And the bargain of the day....
Magellan 315 Handheld GPS - $2

No, that's not a typo, I bought a handheld GPS for TWO dollars. It works fine! It had some hazing on the plastic over the LCD but a little quality time with a buffing disc and my Dremmel and it took care of most of that - at least enough for it to be usable (even with the gouge I somehow managed to put into the middle of the screen).

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