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Our Purges and Splurges

Varage Sale and FB buy/sell/swap groups are ingenious creations. Prior to these very convenient online services, we used to have to host or attend garage sales that sucked away our weekends, or go thrifting in dank and smelly stores, or list and buy our items on Craigslist and risk crossing paths with a shady person. Now? We can buy and sell our crap used goods from the comfort of anywhere (including the potty), provided we have a good WiFi signal and our smartphone handy.

God bless technology.

Lately, I've been watching my kid play, and what I've discovered is that she would far prefer reading her books or playing with stickers to actually playing with most of her toys. Sure, her stuffies, Calico Critters and Lalaloopsy dolls still see some action, but not her musical toys from two years ago, or her Duplo. Her iPad also been a main source of entertainment, especially now that she has discovered the Party with PlayKids app.

Anyway, I've seen what hoarding looks like. I am genetically-predisposed to this horrible condition. Therefore, I am very intentional about purging whenever something has outlived its usefulness. In this case, it is Little L's old toys, which we have been culling for the past couple of weeks. What I've been doing is pulling the items out, asking Little L whether we should keep or "toss" them, and then letting her decide. In a few cases, I had to do a bit of coaxing, but for the most part she and I saw eye-to-eye on the things she still valued and the ones she never touched. The "toss" pile then became either a donation pile or a sell pile.

As each item was added to the sell pile (this process took a few days), I took pics and uploaded my items to either VS or FB or both. I did the listings one at a time, so that I didn't overwhelm myself or let it eat up too much of my day. Often, an interested buyer would comment within the hour of my listing. Amazing. Then, within just a couple of days, said buyer would show up at the location of my choice to pick up the item. Every transaction lasted all of a minute each, and yielded cash in our pocket, to be used to fund Little L's next purchases (which we suspect to either be Lego sets or American Girl gear). Easy peasy.

Now, I wasn't selling $1 items. If something had so little value, I usually just donated it. However, at $5 or $10 or $15 a piece, the sales quickly added up. We have sold over $100 now, and I anticipate that once I can convince her to part with her Step 2 kitchen, we will have just about enough to buy that stinking' American Girl doll (seriously, you'd think those girls were made out of gold, considering how much they charge for them)!

And the best part? Space. Glorious space in my home. Take that, hoarder genes!

That's not to say I haven't been doing some retail therapy on my phone, either. Recently we scored some beautiful mirrors to decorate our front entryway ($5!) and I've also been buying my kid her Tea and Beans. Nothing that adds to clutter, though; only stuff that will help organize our space and declutter.

I'm so very thankful for these apps and the ways in which they are contributing to our purging and purchasing, and I love that this kind of economy doesn't add more to the landfill. Good for my conscience and my wallet! :)

Have you used Varage Sale or Facebook buy/sell groups to purchase or sell your crap stuff? Let me know what your experiences have been like! 


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