Organizing our garage is one of those projects that I've never wanted to do.
I can't watch TV as I organize.
It's dusty and dirty.
There are bulky things in there. I can't throw them away because they're too big. They're not worth donating (pieces of wood, old shelves, etc.)
A lot of it was expensive at one time. DS's battery operated car was $400. (My parents got him that when he was 4). But honestly, he is 11 now. It's been sitting for at least 5 years. The scooters for the kids. DD is 17 now and I can't picture her hopping on her little blue scooter and zooming around.
Getting to the point...
Today I decided to try & make a little money. It did NOT go well, in case you were wondering how I feel now that I'm a millionaire from all of these bright ideas.
I called a recycling place and asked if they purchase steel shelving. The guy said yes. So, DS and I sweated and grunted and threw 18 shelves into the trunk and backseat of the car. He banged his hand. I whacked my foot. We were very polite and pleasant to each other the whole time, of course. (Stop playing and get over here and help me before I get mad. I KNOW mom, etc.) We hopped into the blissful air-conditioned comfort of the car and set off. Good thing I brought the phone book, complete with the address and a mini map. I only turned around 3 times before finding this stupid recycling place and would you PLEASE STOP playing with the radio?! OKAAY MOM!
We pull up and the guy that came ambling out said that they only buy when there's a large quantity, but I was welcome to toss the shelves onto the pile'o'junk they had sitting there. He must have seen the pissed-off look on my face because he offered to help toss them on the pile. I went ahead and did it because the alternative was to drive home and unload these dumb things back into the garage and that wasn't happening. One good thing is that DS discovered the joy of throwing shelves as far as he could onto a pile of metal, making a loud crashing sound. At least one of us had fun.
We went to one of the local consignment shops next. I had called and she said she was going out of business, so while we were in the area I decided to stop and see if they owe me anything. Too late - empty store. Crap. I took a loss there.
I stopped by Kohl's and returned some jeans I had bought for DH. $14.83 credited to my debit card.
So, there you have it. I'm richer by $14.83.
There is an empty space in the garage where the shelves were leaning against the wall. All the rest of the stuff is still there and I feel guilty every time I look at it. Oh well.
Archive for June, 2006
Organizing our garage is one of those projects that I've never wanted to do.
I've been getting the books that sold ready to ship, so I may as well update.
Delos - .88
Mommy Knows Worse - $4.58
Surviving Schitzophrenia - .81
Coming Out Straight - $13.19
Basics of Pistol Shooting - $4.73
Not very thrilling this time, but every little bit helps. This time adds $23.31 to $716.95, making the new total $740.26
Today is my day off, and I'm off to the local recycling place. I have some metal shelves and am going to see what they're worth. Wish me luck!
Yesterday I took the CVS $25 prescription transfer coupon to Target and redeemed it there. Now I have a gift card to Target for $25. I'm going to try and find DH's Father's Day gift there. The prescription was actually for our dog, Shadow. It's a muscle relaxer that we give her when she moves around too much and is in pain. The prescription cost was $10.00 and it is very helpful. In fact, I gave her some 1/2 hour ago and she's snoozing in a warm patch of sunlight.
I have a big box of baby clothes that I need to do something with. E-Bay or consignment - I'm not sure what. I need to decide so they make some money for me!
More later. I'd better quit typing and get moving. I need to go to the post office. Someone bought a book from me and they live in Spain. I have to take it there and fill out the custom forms. The library is right there, so hopefully there will be some good books for sale.
Beautiful day today. The laundry is hanging on the line.
Try to control your excitement - I give you... the downstairs bathroom!
Today is very nice - not too hot, not too cold. I've been cleaning, and so have the kids. DH laid down the law and said NO activities until their rooms are clean! They are both working up there right now.
It's amazing how long one bathroom can take. I hung the rest of the border (been procrastinating on that big time), scrubbed the floor, scraped off some paint splatters that got on the grout, and got DH to hang the towel bar. I hung one of my favorite cross-stitch creations and it finally is complete!
Well, except for the spot in the wall that needs to be patched. And new curtains to buy. And knobs for the cabinet would look good. And...
Anyhow. DH is grocery shopping and I think I'll clean the fridge out before he gets back. It's as close to empty as it's going to get, so I may as well.
Off to scrub. Yay.
Yesterday DH, DS and I went to my parents' house to take them to dinner. They chose a very nice Polish restaurant and the food was terrific. I had city chicken, complete with mashed potatoes and corn. Very rich, but so good! We went back to their house and played cards for the next couple of hours, with the usual booing and heckling. We munched on a snack mix. A good time was had by all.
DH and I were both tired. I took a couple of Tylenol PM as soon as we got home and conked out.
Around 2:15 I woke up suddenly. I had been choking in my sleep. There was some kind of acid reflux thing going on and the burning in my throat and chest were distressing, to say the least. Choking and wheezing, I sat up and tried to clear my throat. No luck. My coughing woke up DH and he sat up and looked at me. He looked pretty freaked out so I staggered to the connecting bathroom and looked at myself in the mirror. My eyes were huge and tear-filled, and my face was a deep red. It felt like there was water in my lungs and acid in my throat and chest.
It was hard to catch my breath and I started to panic. Luckily DH was there to help calm me down. I struggled for about 15 minutes and he had me stand up while he just hugged me. That was comforting and my breathing slowed down a little, from panicked gasps to a more slow, normal pace.
I remembered a free sample (!) I had received and went downstairs to grab the Tums softchews that had been sent in the mail to me. I tell you what, one of those took the burning sensation away almost immediately. I was so grateful to have them! I fell asleep after another 45 minutes or so.
Right now it feels like my lungs hurt, like I inhaled something that isn't supposed to be there. I probably did.
So much for eating and going to sleep right away. Mistake. Big mistake.
How was your evening? ;0)
I went to the bank and took out $40 so I could hit some garage sales. Well, I ended up going to two before coming home. The first one was an older couple, selling home decor, tools, housewares, golf items, etc. Nothing too exciting there. The second sale was awesome!
First of all, this garage was tricked out; it was the nicest one I've been in. The flooring was a combination of Pergo-type wood laminate and an all purpose carpet, like what you would have in a business. There was a pool table, a small bar area, and a very nice setup to store tools. There was a TV on the wall. I've never seen anyone finish a garage to look like a rec room before, but they did a nice job.
Anyhow, I was able to find tons of beautiful infant clothes and household items. I spent less than $45 and walked away with a huge box of goodies.
Yesterday I went to the library and spent $1.00 on two books. Don't laugh - they have sold already.
Guns, Germs, and Steel - $7.81 profit
Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister - $5.14 profit
also sold last night;
Shoot the Moon - $2.48 profit
Totals for the last couple of days - $45.25 spent and $15.43 profit. I need to subtract $29.82 from the challenge total of $746.77 to make the new amount $716.95.
How to I get in touch with a fellow blogger? I feel like a dummy because I don't know how.
Well, today's the day that I've decided to get my shovel out and clean the house LOL. So far I've done the dishes, some laundry, and washed the dogs. They were both good this time and Honey didn't try to escape from the tub. I'm only a little damp instead of looking like a drowned rat.
They each react differently to getting a bath. Shadow is snoozing in the warm sunshine and Honey is literally running around in circles. A bath invigorates her. Ah, to be young and frisky like that again! In people years Shadow is 42 and Honey is 7. They both act their ages.
I sold more books today so I'll update the total soon. I've been really trying to focus on getting good items to sell. One that I got at a yard sale sold for over $11.00 - I was inspired by that to go to some sales tomorrow.
I need your feedback. I've been thinking about quitting my job and doing the yard sale thing. Here's where I would sell items;
a local housewares consignment shop
" " children's " "
" " woman's " "
What if I seriously got into couponing? I bet I could save a ton of money there, plus build up a nice stockpile. How about rebates? I've never really done that before. Is it worth it?
I would need to make/save about $300 a week to make it work, and pay the bills.
Here are some book that have sold recently;
Fibroids - $2.46 profit
The Joy of Fatherhood - .24 LOL
Blowing My Cover - $2.86
A Table in the Presence - $3.82
Crazy Plates - $10.14
I'm too nice sometimes. I assumed that the fatherhood book is for Father's day and there's no way it will get from here to California via media mail on time. People just have no idea how long media mail can take. So, I shipped it Priority. Sheesh. Big profit there. Anyhow, the challenge total is $746.77
I was just thinking about Christmas in my last post, and decided to head over to the American Girl website. They have great sales sometimes. Well, they are having a terrific clearance sale going on and I found some books for my niece's daughter.
Here's what I ordered;
Hallie's Horrible Handwriting .49
Bright, Shiny Skylar .49
Thank You Logan! .49
Lindy's Happy Ending .49
The Fair-Share Pair .49
These are GREAT prices for American Girl books! The shipping cost was only .95 and the total cost for my order was $3.40 for five books. The retail value is $19.95 and I'm happy to say that I'm done shopping for one person.
They don't take very good care of things in that house. She's a sweet little girl and I like to get her nice things, but hate throwing my money out the window because her parents are too lazy to pick things up off the floor or read to their kids. She is 8 now and hopefully will get interested enough in these titles to read them independantly. If not at least I tried and it didn't cost much.
Here's the link to the American Girl website;
Make sure you explore all of the sale areas. Enjoy!
Ok, let me just say that I know it's June and thinking about cold weather, snow, Christmas crowds and spending money probably isn't your favorite topic right now.
With that being said, I've already been on the hunt for holiday bargains. When Target went to 90% off back in January I was able to get the "grab bag" gifts done for DH's family and also pick up quite a bit for my nieces' kids.
Lately I've been focusing on stocking stuffers for my own kids. I was shopping at Target the other day and found some excellent clearance deals on an end cap.
mascara for DD - .50
makeup sponges - .24 each
small hairbrushes for each kid - .86
shower gel for DS - .58 He will be 12 by next Christmas and it's a nice "manly" scent LOL
We picked names for Christmas and I have my MIL to buy for. That will be fun. She's a pleasure to shop for. It's nice knowing this far in advance so I can keep an eye out for bargains.
I figure that when the Halloween candy goes on sale in early November I can stock up for the Christmas stockings.
Does anyone else start shopping early? I even find nice unused items at garage sales to fill in around the edges for the kids. I like to get them books and will be actively looking for appropriate like-new ones as I hunt for things to sell online. It's expensive going to Border's and getting them there. Fun, but pricy.
Some things are impossible to buy this far in advance because the kids don't decide until November or December what they want. In the meantime I'm going to do my best to get the things I do every year. One is a box of books for each child, another is stocking stuffers - some useful and some candy and some toys, etc.
I'm going to keep saving points from MyPoints and redeem in the fall for a gift card for DH. That will be a nice addition to his Christmas stocking and won't cost a thing. Last year I got him Burger King gift coupons from MyPoints and he really liked that.
I'm going to try very hard to buy and sell more books. We have a tax bill that is huge and needs to be paid. I think I'm going to have to use a chunk of the challenge money to help pay it off. It's also time to hit the garage sales to find things to sell, plus have one of my own.
With that said, here are a few books that have sold recently;
The Kite Runner - $2.86 profit
Blackberry Wine - $3.25
Jumpstart Prep - $1.93
Sick Puppy - $3.04
Snowfall - $1.45
A Red Heart of Memories - $3.91
Why a Daughter Needs a Dad - $3.79
Excuse Me, Your Life Is Waiting - $5.69
I would have done better on the last title but I decided to ship it via Priority mail, which costs $2.46 more. I'm assuming that it's a Father's Day gift and media mail might not get it there in time. A lot of people don't realize how long media mail can take.
The total for this lot is $25.92 and I'm hoping to work on adding and culling books from my bookshelf over the next few weeks.
I have $727.25 in the challenge savings account. I'm not sure if I'll be able to hang on to that. The tax bill is due in about two weeks. I also need to transfer some money from my last paycheck to add to savings. That's on hold for the moment while I go over our budget.
Yesterday DS had his graduation ceremony from elementary school. Next year we have middle school to look forward to - yikes! They did a nice job for the most part. I enjoyed the slide show; each kid was shown as a baby or very young child and then as they are today. I have to admit I got a little mushy over that part. It seems like just yesterday...(sniff)
I took him to a movie after he got home from school. I was going to add my piggy bank money to the challenge amount, but spent it yesterday. Movie tickets - $5.50 each (twilight show), candy, soda, and an ice cream at the store, $6.00, and popcorn at the movie theatre $4.00 (we shared a medium and it was just right). It was nice to have the money on hand for doing something fun and I wanted to celebrate with him the end of the school year. It was worth the $21.00 I spent.
The library is within a mile of the movie theater and you know I just had to stop to see if there were any good books to buy. I set DS up with a book of his choosing and one I grabbed on impulse, "Freaky Friday". He got really immersed in that one and seemed sorry to return it to the shelf when I was done with my book purchase. There are so many good children's books that just never go out of style.
I spent $6.00 on my books. As I was paying with the money from my piggy bank I was a little embarassed to be paying with quarters and dimes but the librarian was so grateful for the change. She said they needed it badly. The ladies that work at the library are so nice and I enjoy going there. I spent $6.00 and so the new challenge amount is $701.33.
This will be a hard post to write, but I can't always talk about the good stuff. Well, I could but it wouldn't be a very honest blog.
I used to own my own business. Financially things went well, especially at Christmas and Easter. Money was plentiful but time with the kids was not. So what did I do? Bought them things. DS is 11 and doesn't ask for much of anything. He's the most low maintenance kid you could imagine. He doesn't care what he wears, eats, or has. An occasional treat is fine, other than that we seldom buy him things. He saves his allowance for what he wants and frequently gives or loans his money to his big sister.
Then there's the 17 year old. She wants me to buy her things all the time, constantly. She has no job and isn't actively searching. She's a junior in high school. We used to spend time together shopping or going to the book store or the movies. I frequently took her to Hollister, Abercrombie & Fitch, Bebe, Neiman Marcus, etc. My mom and sister buy her a lot too. Last February we went to a wedding in Minnesota and visited the Mall of America. I got her a couple of tee shirts. My sister got her shoes, a purse, a few outfits, and mom got her a Juicy outfit, some jewelry... you get the picture. They went off on their own and I didn't think it would be that much stuff.
Anyhow, it's not like I'm not to blame here. She is used to shopping expiditions where I would drop $400 to $500 with no problem.
We sold our business in 2005 and put the profits into an "untouchable" account. It is for the kids' college education. Right now DH and I both work at jobs that don't pay a spectacular amount. He was downsized in 2004 and makes less now. I enjoy my job for the most part but sure don't make much! The job hunt begins anew this week.
We live within our means right now and pay the bills with what we earn. That's just how it is.
DH and I have both talked to DD about how things are different now. She just can't seem to acknowledge that we're not willing or able to fund shopping trips, a car, money for the school yearbook ($75) $25 in lunch money every week, and on and on. When either of us brings this up she gets angry.
I told DH that we have to show some "tough love" and cut her off from any spending money. He agrees. We've been doing that for a while and she calls us mean. (Sigh)
I figure eventually the kid will get a job. Or, drive us crazy.
Here are some books that I have sold recently;
Candy - $6.57 profit
Death On The Installment Plan - $7.96 profit
I Know This Much Is True - $1.91 profit
Into Love And Out Again - $4.20
Ishmael - $2.71
Bird By Bird - $6.46
The Underpants - $1.98
One Continuous Mistake - $1.69
The Sweater Letter - $17.02
The Many Lives & Secret Sorrows Of Josephine B. - $1.57
I'll be right back - I think I'm burning dinner...
OK, I'm back, and the rice has been rescued. The book sales for this time came to $52.07, and my new challenge total amount is $707.33.
I was just reading a blog by Money Talk$ and it inspired me to add this entry to MY blog. I work at a retail store right now. Lately I'm becoming more disenchanted with my job. Good points;
The people I work with are great. Everyone, from the store manager to the newest employees, work hard. We all pitch in to get the job done and I enjoy what I do for the most part.
We are recognized for our hard work. Verbally and in writing, as well as free food items and meals at least several times a month for everyone.
We work hard at giving the customers a good impression and are successful in doing so. Our feedback scores are the best in the district.
With that being said, I'm ready to job-hunt again now.
I'm not being paid what I'm worth, and it is hard work. The paychecks aren't great. I'm doing OK, but I could be doing a lot better!
Now that I've learned what I need to know boredom has set in. The learning process was challenging and exciting, but I'm confident in what to do now. No challenge. (Yawn)
Anyhow, one of the things that's been bothering me the most probably wouldn't even occur to most people.
We are encouraged every day to talk customers into applying for the store credit card. By the time I left today nine people had applied for the card. When there are meetings at work to congratulate us on our progress, I always feel like cringing. I don't like to celebrate the fact that people are going into debt.
Sometimes when extra help is needed, I help check people out. I can't tell you how many talk about hiding their purchases from their husbands because they overspent. People spend $200-$300 and more easily, charge it, and talk about getting home first so their husband won't notice. Most of the time it's decorative items for the house.
Anyhow, it helps keep me on track in a strange way. I can't very well disagree with something but do the same thing myself. Seeing this stuff happen every day gives me the motivation to not give in to temptation.
How are all of you doing in receiving the free Coke coupons? I played the game back in March and won 13 times. So far I have received 9 free coupons in the mail. DH is very happy! I'm going to start redeeming them next week. So far we can get 45 2-liter bottles of soda. Hopefully the other four coupons will arrive as well. One of the envelopes had TWO coupons in it - all of the rest had one each so I think I got lucky.
I don't drink much pop. DH and DD do, and the savings for our family because of this promotion will add up.