Category Archives: lists

13 Lucky Reasons You Should Shop G-Sales

sale

We are in spring here in Indiana, it’s been a long time coming but it’s finally here (I think, lol). One of my favorite things to do is garage sale. Here are some of my best reasons you should come out and join me this year: Because you are spending your hard earned money in America. It is not going beyond our borders, so you are not weakening our own economy even if the item is made abroad.

  1. You may not always need ‘brand-new’ so why pay out more money than you need to.
  2. Saving on g-sales allows you to use your money for special things you might not be able to afford otherwise…like vacations or special restaurant treats. An old pair of jeans and some t-shirts may mean you are saving around $50—and who couldn’t use an extra $50?!!
  3. Its good mentoring. It helps our children realize the importance of living within their own means, a lesson best learned now than later on.
  4. Creativity is encouraged. When you shop g-sales you realize how to repurpose items or change them to make them more trendy or useful. Painting a coffee table will sometimes make it just what the big stores are selling, or taking the feet off of a dresser helps you stack it on top of a shorter dresser to make a larger one for more storage. An sturdy old coffee table might make a great dining or mudroom bench.
  5. You meet some really great people! Sometimes when you admire a garden the opportunity arises to add to your own for free. It also allows you to meet a potential best friend when you see they have like interests as yourself.
  6. Sometimes you find things you need to solve problems. I have found items that I’ve reused for trellises for my morning glories. I’ve found rain boots to use as flower planters for decorating my gardens and I’ve found more often than not, just what I’ve been looking for—SURPRISE!
  7. Because, contrary to what your kids may be telling you, their friends will not know that you bought their jeans at a g-sale and not a store—providing you shop wisely. Even so, for so called ‘play clothes’, these are easily gotten at garage sales for really cheap prices.
  8. Because it’s fun to do! Grab a friend and go. Make it a game to see how much you can find on your list and bargain with the owners for a better deal. Buy your friend a meal at McDonalds when they win or reap the benefits yourself when you do. Take your time or grab and go either way it’s bound to be fun.
  9. It’s a social event! I’ve met so many friends at g-sales. Sometimes you frequent the same areas for g-sales and sometimes when I shop with girl-friends we go into new neighborhoods.
  10. If you like surprises you’ll like g-sales. If you love the ‘thrill of the hunt’ you are a born g-saler. You never know what all you’ll find. I found an old rusty and verdigris covered spigot for a quarter. I sprayed varnish on it and made a hand towel holder for my new bathroom. I loved my new find and who gets a towel rack for a quarter?!! And the comments made on my find were endless.
  11. It molds you into a simpler person. You stop seeking out immediate gratification and go for the less expensive route along with the longer wait. With that goes a building of character and a lessening of a faster paced life. Not bad for saving money!
  12. Sometimes you even save money when you wait and realize what you thought you wanted you no longer want. Many times after looking for a while for something, I’ve moved on and used something else I’ve gotten cheaper. Often the substitution has worked out better since I’d taken the time to think it out.

So readers, run out there this weekend and look for your own bargains. If you are finding this to be intimidating because you’re a bit shy, take along a friend or a spouse. It is really fun, try it just for the fun of it!

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10 reasons organizing is a good thing:

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  1. Purging files and items is freeing. Sometimes holding onto things is stressful in ways we don’t understand. Allow yourself to toss items you felt you ‘had to keep’ such as Christmas gifts that are not to your taste or wrong size. Give these things to a charity so you can recycle them. Recycle any plastic plant pots sitting in your garage. I sold a lot of spray paint at my last garage sale for .25/can and sold all of them in my bin.
  2. Because putting like items in cupboards or bins allow things to look neater and feel cleaner. It also makes sweeping floors and dusting easier without clutter. You can stack bins easier than the free items, making for more storage space.
  3. Removing large items you never or rarely use allows for more storage space for the things you do use. If you are storing extra doors or tools you might use in a few years, it might be helpful to sell them or give them to a friend who will let you use them later when the need arises.
  4. Putting up shelves or cupboards in storage areas allow for better storage and access to items. I grabbed some cupboards from a street corner before the trash came by for pick-up. A friend hung them for me in my garage and added a door for a work bench. I can keep some of my gardening supplies in my cupboards and pot my plants on my bench.
  5. It just simplifies life. Let’s face it, most of us complicate our living by holding onto things that we seldom use and don’t need. We dust and clean around things we know we should move out, when we do it always seems to simplify our living spaces.
  6. Allowing someone else to benefit from your excess, can empower you.  There is just something about giving to someone less fortunate that can make you feel more in control of your life and gives your life more purpose. You are not just throwing your items away, you are giving them to someone else to use.
  7. It allows you to see what you don’t really need. I tend to be a hoarder. I collect things that I think I may one day need or use. If I haven’t needed it for a year or two at the maximum, I donate it. I find I really don’t miss it either. Life changes as you grow and sometimes the projects change too. This allows me to purge things from my life that are no longer valid. Don’t feel bad donating things you’ve spent money on, see it as giving to a charity.
  8. Knowing when it’s time to donate, makes organizing easier. Is there a project you’ve never gotten around to? Take stock in what those are and ask yourself if you will do that project in the coming months, if not donate.
  9. Seeing how much you accumulate helps to see what you won’t need. Whether it’s taking inventory or your ‘stash’ or seeing what you never use; when you organize you soon realize how much of anything you need. If you organize for a garage sale, you can use the money from the sale to buy things you need to stay organized. I did this a few years ago and was able to organize all my closets into more useful storage spaces.
  10. Sometimes it just makes sense to re-purchase an item than store it. There are times in our lives when it just makes sense to purge the left over scraps from a project than keep them ‘just-in-case’ you might have another project that could use it. You can take up a lot of space saving all those things.

A few places to donate to:

Goodwill, freecycle.org, Better World Books, Salvation Army.

Blessings in your organizing! fish

Questions To Ponder During Our Artic Blast

arctic blastThis week in Indiana our weather decided to hold us all pretty much hostage in our homes, unless we were lucky/unlucky enough to go to work each day anyway. I was not that lucky nor was I wanting to see how blessed I am by wandering out in this insanely cold weather. But it did give me a sense to ponder and here are the things I pondered:

  • If confusion is a symptom of hypothermia (as they said on the news) then I must be hypothermic on a fairly regular basis…
  • Why is it so much fun opening my front door to throw boiling water outside when it’s so ‘subarctic’ out there?
  • Has anyone seen the global warming guys that used to spout about all the bad effects of warm climates? (They must have frozen to death arguing about it this week)!
  • Will my bathroom faucet trickle to the tune of several hundred dollars this year just to keep my pipes intact? Or are we subsidized for the ‘subarctic’ weather as we are in the summer when we water our lawns? (I know…just dreaming…)
  • Does it really feel THAT different at nine below than at -20? Or could you feel it at all by then??!
  • Our county has declared a state of emergency. Judging from the traffic on the streets…there was  an unprecedented amount of emergencies in our city on Monday…hmmm

Well that’s all I got.fish

 

12 Reasons I LIKE Snow Days

snowdayI know, most of you reading this will probably think there is something truly wrong with someone who thinks this way. You’d feel justified, no doubt, if you knew there are actually more, lol. These are the top of my list.  While I will not argue that there MAYBE something seriously ‘wrong’ with me, I am not convinced that THIS is ‘what’s wrong’ with me.  I get excited when I hear the words “snow storm”, lol. What better time to call your boss and say “I can’t make it in today”, not that this an ideal situation but isn’t it better than fretting about your situation? Here are some reasons I like ‘snow days’:

  • What a great time to catch up on your smaller projects like making Christmas ornaments
  • Calling friends who live far away
  • Read that book you’ve been wanting to read
  • Pull out the yarn you bought for Aunt Susie’s scarf and knit away!
  • Put the bubble wrap on your large windows before the sub-zero temps come your way
  • Watch your favorite movies or find a new favorite movie on Netflix
  • Play games with your kids
  • Clean out your closet and fill that Goodwill bag, then hang near your door so you don’t forget it
  • Have the kids go through their toys for Goodwill
  • Pop some corn and make hot chocolate to stay warm and cozy
  • Use some of those old clothes to make doll clothes for the kiddies
  • Start a blog!

Did this help make you a believer in snow days? Hope so.fish

 

Things To ‘Pay Your Blessings Forward’ in 2014

  • be the changeFollow your church’s social network. Find someone with a need you can provide, it doesn’t need to be new, just in good condition.
  • Advertise to bless someone in need with an item you no longer want or need.
  • Give garden cuttings to neighbors or friends for their gardens, it will save them some money.
  • Offer to do a job for someone. Show off your talents, wallpaper someone’s wall, paint their front door or clean their carpet with your carpet machine.
  • Make dinner for a busy family or offer to tend their garden for the summer.
  • Take some fresh fruit or veggies to a family in need or give them to a food pantry.
  • Make 5 minute artisan bread for the soup kitchen. http://www.artisanbreadinfive.com
  • Volunteer in a child’s classroom.
  • Knit chemo hats for the local Cancer Center.
  • Make Cuddle scarves for needy kids at a local school. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JAFdZIayxsU
  • Sort through your child’s toys and give the better ones to a homeless shelter nearby.
  • Give another child a book. Take your child’s out-grown books to a Better World Books bin and recycle.
  • Sort through your clothes and bag up for a charity (don’t forget to count it as a donation when you do your taxes). http://satruck.org/donation-value-guide
  • Volunteer in the local soup kitchen or food pantry.
  • Take cut flowers from your garden to nursing home patients, buy vases at Goodwill or garage sales or use old bottles.
  • Make lavender sachets or heating packs to give to the women’s shelters. http://buttonsandpaint.blogspot.co.uk/2013/11/lavender-heat-pad.html
  • Make some Christmas ornaments for a homeless shelter. http://jenny-jenjo.blogspot.com/2007/12/homemade-nativity-ornament.html
  • Work alongside a charity clothing store to provide ‘new clothes’ for children at the Women’s shelter, take Christmas pictures of the children for their mothers’ Christmas gifts. Find some simple frames and print out 4×6’s for the gifts. Make sure you have some wrapping paper for the children to wrap them nicely.
  • Use your family’s old clothing to make doll clothing for less fortunate children. If you can find a gently used doll or buy a new doll if you can. Wrap in a box and take to the child for a birthday gift or a Christmas gift.
  • Cheer up a sick friend. Take a cute mug, add a couple packages of chicken cup-a-soup, add a few packages or crackers; place into a small basket along with a fresh bouquet of cut flowers and a Get-Well card.
  • Take an old chair and spray paint it a bright color. Set it in a neighbor’s garden with a cheerful pot of flowers on the seat.fish
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Ten Things I’ve Learned in 2013 (or before)

new yearsFriends who understand the importance of being friends are rare. Last night as we were getting ready to celebrate the New Year, a friend called from a neighboring city saying she had been in an accident and could not make it to our party. Everyone had already arrived and we were ready to party! I looked at a friend near me and said I’m going to bring her back. I did not care that she would not feel like coming to our party, I only wanted to know that she would be safe and arrive where ever she needed to be to feel safe. My friend began nodding her head and we got our heavy gear on to trudge out into the snow filled streets to find our mutual friend.

Friends who enjoy being with us and blessings. Last night we had our annual New Year’s Party…a bit of snack foods, a bit of games and a bit of gifts. We had so much fun we totally ran out of time to do many games! Lol. We all had so much fun telling stories, laughing with each other and sharing our lives. Everyone should have at least one friend enjoy our humanness.

Sometimes ‘exclusive clubs’ can be fun. There are only a few ‘restrictions’ to our party. One is that you must be ‘unattached’—divorced, widowed, single or just need a night out alone away from your man; This way we can discuss ANYTHING and not be embarrassed. The stories of figure enhancing bras that whose saline filled pads were found in the garden mulch after a rather long conversation with the postman while gardening, is only one of the stories we amused ourselves with during the night.

Friends who embrace your frugal-self are kindred spirits and rare: treat them as such.  Garage sales are always more fun with a few friends…especially when you all agree on what has potential. White elephant gifts are WAY MORE fun to open and saving a little money on a project is usually more fun than handing out hard-earned money on something with less personality. The only thing you need to remember is that friendship is more important than taking home all the goodies, and often is enhanced when you share your new acquisitions with your friends especially if it’s from Bath and Body Works!

Covered porches are one of the best inventions in housing. I love sitting in my swing reading on my back porch. The experience is enhanced by the fact that I am sheltered from the heat of the sun. It also encourages friends to come by in the summer since they know they can enjoy being outside without the bad effects of the sun. I have an oversized swing which seats three adults. I also keep two large patio chairs at the other end which can be moved to allow for even more seating. Good times and cool drinks are free!

Gardening is fun but don’t over-do it–the summer’s too short.  I love my gardens! I also enjoy gardening but after July it becomes difficult to do much without my asthma complaining. I have learned to give back some of my gardens to my yard as a compromise. This way I can have more time and energy for entertaining my friends, enjoying my flowers that I still have, and just sitting in my garden with my iced tea! Life is too short…

Cuddle scarves. Easy and soooo warm! Just 1/3 yd of cuddle fleece and two seams does it. This is THE BEST scarf EVER.  Make them for every woman you know, every woman you like, even ones you don’t particularly enjoy…you will be loved by all, lol…Honestly!

You can never have enough shelves.  Don’t be afraid to add shelves to your closets and pantries for more organized storage, unless you can afford to hire professional closet organizers while building or moving, you will likely need more shelves and deeper shelves. The small cost of materials is well worth it, and don’t forget to put in plenty of shelves for all your special shoes and purses. Measure the heights of baskets and clothing to accurately place your shelving and rods for optimal use.

Proudly display your memories.  Do you have competition ribbons stashed away, or old family photographs, even seashells and sand from childhood vacation sites?  Put them all on display. Use shadowboxes, frames or even jars to display your treasures. Be sure to label anything you or others might want to remember.

My favorite memories are hanging on my wall along with early pictures of my parents and grandparents, my son’s baby pictures are next to my Dad’s baby pictures and my Mother’s pictures. I enjoy looking at these memories and legacies every day. Don’t hide away your genetics, be proud of who you are and where you came from.

Most things are ‘small stuff’.  A relative once told me “a person’s motto should be, ‘why should I stress about something that will not matter a hundred years from now’”.  This is a good way to live I think, especially since we’ve just gotten through a major health scare with Brody.

He received a box of 50 Hot Wheel cars for Christmas and just loved playing with them, he was in Heaven. I had promised to watch a movie with him earlier and Gma reminded him of this as he scooted down the stairs to play. Holding his car ‘stash’ in his arms he called back to me, “Mom…too busy! Too busy!” with the emphasis on the first syllable of busy. At first I didn’t understand but by the third or fourth time repeating his statement I got it.

Life is too short to take any one away from their childhood play. Laughing to myself I realized he was “busy” finishing up his childhood dreams, after all who EVER gets 50 cars to play with at ONE time??fish

 

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