Saturday, May 9, 2009

Garage Sale Days

Garage sales, some people love them, some people can do without them. I fall in the latter category. In the past I have held yard sales in our front yard & even though we live on a busy street we just haven't made much money. However, when our church hosts a parking lot sale on the very same street two blocks south they do very well.

Recently our church hosted one to raise money for our youth to go to camp this summer. I volunteered for four days, two of which were the actual sale. The first two we were sorting & hanging & organizing things. What a big job. We decided to accept donations rather than price everything so it wasn't as bad as it could have been.

The two days of the sale turned out to be real good weather after raining all week long. This was encouraging. We started setting up at 6:00 a.m. on Friday morning for the 8:00a.m. start time. Buyers were coming at 7:15.

What I liked most about the sale was how generous people can be. Getting to know my fellow church goers was also fun. Toward the end of the second day we were quite goofy (stories to follow). Another fun thing was talking to the buyers.

I'll share about a young guy who has moved here from another country & he was setting up housekeeping so he was looking for cooking utensils. He carefully negotiated the tables of second hand gadgets & wares. Every so often he would summon me & ask what something was for & how to use it. He would say "Oh", or look confused & often he would smile hugely with beautiful white teeth showing. He would then point at it & say, "I'll take that", & walk on to look some more. A few minutes later he was summoning me again. He was very kind.

After a while he had a small suit case he had found in which he had placed several items. He came & asked how much he owed us. At that time of day we were packing things up to donate to the local thrift store (Lord bless those folks, I can't imagine unpacking, hanging, sorting & pricing that stuff everyday) so we were giving everything away.

I explained this to the young man & he insisted on donating. I hope he was blessed as much or more than I (we) were. He inquired about what time church was on Sunday morning and stated that he wanted to be there. I will be looking for him. At that, he picked up his little suitcase of kitchen treasures & began walking. I looked after him as he walked down the side of the road. No car, no bus, he was walking, all alone.

I chatted with different folks each day & people I knew were just out "garage saling" & stopped by not knowing I was a part of this one. So I caught up with an old friend & will be having coffee with a new friend & will be buying a mocha from my favorite Espresso stand as usual. It's just fun when things happen that way. No coincidence. God is in EVERYTHING & I love that about my savior.

Now on to the funny stuff. Late on the second day we were doing our folding, hanging, sorting, rearranging & usual organizing of the "stuff". At this point we were all pretty tired. One gal found a feau fur scarf thingy & wrapped it around her neck. She paraded around the area as we lost it in laughter. Then she jokingly complained about her hip going out on her. More laughter arose.

Next, the youth director put on womens clothing over his own clothes. These women's clothes were quite tight as you might imagine & I'll leave you to your imagination on how funny that was. Can you say "I laughed until I cried (peed)"? Just kidding, just kidding. At this point I think we may have scared off some of the buyers. My daughter even expressed how she was, "scarred for life" when he put on a sports bra & tried using some old exercise machine.

One of the youth guys created an outfit that reminded me of Minnie Pearl (dating myself, I know). He had on a huge straw hat with flowers on it (you know the kind we used to hang on the wall), a red rabbit's foot hanging from his glasses, a fur collar & various other silly things that created a roar of laughter from those looking on. As you may guess we had fun while we raised money.

So to all of you "garage salers" out there, your money & compliments & passing along the word of a great garage sale to your friends & family, is appreciated very much. And for the ones I met, I know I am blessed. I hope that they found the treasures they were looking for and felt good about helping kids go to camp.


  1. I think my 'Garage sale days' just collided with my 'you're only as old as you feel", my aching feet,legs, back & pink face are telling me a story this morning.

  2. Oh, fundraisers for camp! We've done MANY of those. I work with our Youth at my church and love it... usually. ha ha ha

    One year we all bought BLANK colored t-shirts...totally plain. Then on the front of them, we wrote something catchy like "Send Me To Camp"... or "All these people SENT me to camp!" We all carried around markers and people were allowed to sign our shirts IF they gave us money. Some gave us a nickel, some gave us $10.00. It was an awesome fundraiser!!! The kids loved it, and people had a blast signing us.