Yard Sale Fever


I think I am coming down with something. The symptoms are: racing pulse, breathing fast, breaking out into a cold sweat. What is the cause? Well, the symptoms occur only when I am driving down the street and see it...the YARD SALE sign!!

Oh, how I love to turn the car around and follow those beloved neon paper signs to that "pot of gold" at the end of the rainbow...a driveway full of someone else's junk! There is no thrill quite like discovering a treasure--either something you can't get anymore, or something you've been wanting, for a great price.

My chest swells with pride as I climb back into my car with a pretty picture, a cute toy, or a really neat book, for less than a dollar. I can't wait to show my husband my new dress, or the kids their new toys, or put that new knick-knack on a shelf. Even better yet, when I look into the FREE box, and find something that I can't believe they are giving away! Yeee haaaww!

Garage sales (yard sales, moving sales, tag sales, whatever) can be a great way to get things you need for a great price. Some stuff is like new, and some (with a little creativity) can be good as new...and even more interesting. Once I paid twenty dollars for two van loads of furniture plus a bunch of smaller miscellaneous items. It saved my family a lot of money, because we really needed some dressers and dining chairs (I later found a table and three more chairs for free).

However, these sales can also become addictive, to the point where instead of saving money, you are wasting it. It is easy to buy things you don't need. Sometimes you can even develop a habit of buying without thinking, and end up with a bunch of things you never use cluttering up your house.

It can also cause strain between you and your husband. He may resent seeing you drag other people's junk in the house week after week, knowing that most of it wasn't needed, and your budget is very tight. This isn't fair to him.

I realized this myself recently. Although my husband has been wonderful about it, I can tell it has been bothering him when I go yard saling. I have cut way back, and resisted most temptations, but I can't hide it anymore. Yes, my friends...

My name is Mommaroo2, and I am a sale-aholic.

I can't pass up a yard sale. If I have only two dollars to my name, I will still stop. I'm ashamed to admit it, but I have even been known to make arrangements with kind souls to have them hold an item for me until later in the week, when we get paid. Thec worst thing is, I will tell my husband I'm only going to look for a particular item we need, and that is my intention...then I'll come home with a big bag of other stuff.

I told myself that I had it under control. I can stop anytime I want. Yesterday, I went out to find those clothes for my son, because he really needed it. I was strong at first. I passed up the box of flexi blocks for three dollars, the marble run game for two dollars, and even the Brita water filtering pitcher for a dollar that we really (kind of) needed. I was so proud!

But then I saw it...the cutest framed picture you ever saw. It was very similar to a Thomas Kincade. I loved it. I wanted it. I HAD to have it! It was five dollars. I'll offer them three, I thought. No, $2.50. They'll never take it. But...they did. Well, it's a great deal, and it's sooooo pretty. Okay, that's the only extra thing I'll buy. At the next sale, there were three heavy hardcover fairy tale books for children. 25 cents each!!!!! How could I pass them up...after all, that's just 75 cents. After that, it was all a blur. Fifteen yard sales and twenty dollars later, I made my way home, mortified. I couldn't resist the temptations!

I had told myself we could afford for me to spend a few dollars, but at home I realized I had spent money my family truly needed this week. Here I am trying to find was to save my family money, and I was throwing it out the window!

Yes friends, the time has come to admit my addiction. Unfortunately, there are no "sale-aholics anonymous" groups, therefore I will have to overcome this addiction on my own. It will be difficult, yet it must be done for the good of my family. So from this day on, I'm going cold-turkey. No more yard sales. None, nada, zip, zilch. Until I can control my impulses, the Queen of Yard Sales must abdicate her throne. It won't be easy. I know that the Fever will strike, and I will have to force myself to drive past the lovely neon signs, quell the shakes, and fight the uncontrollable urge to screech to a halt and race up the seller's driveway, purse in hand...but...*sigh*...it's the only way.

3 Responses to "Yard Sale Fever"

Bethany Says :
8:10 PM

Oh, I must say that I know how you feel. I used to have this problem too. But slowly I am getting over it and wish you the best of luck :)

I also wanted ask What about buying those things for gifts. Like that toy that you know your children would just love for Christmas.?

Mommaroo2 Says :
2:47 AM

I personally can't buy ahead of time for my kids. I'm so impatient. Heck, I can barely wait to give them presents when I buy it only a week before Christmas! But if you have more willpower than me, buying Christmas gifts from yard sales is a great, frugal idea. I've bought thrift store toys for Christmas before. My kids are little, they won't know the difference. As they get older, I hope to instill in them that there's nothing wrong with receiving nice used items as gifts. If they don't like getting a bunch of used gifts, they can always choose to get one small new gift, but I think my kids are smart enough to figure out which choice benefits them the most. They'll never be in public school, so peer pressure is irrelevant.

Mommaroo2 Says :
2:52 AM

As a side note, I did go to a yard sale last week, but this time I asked my husband's permission and restricted myself to the amount he allowed me. Well, with one little exception...I went over the limit by a dollar.

You see, I only went to two yard sales, one was a neighbor, another was across town where I got a bunch of vintage linens. At the neighbor's sale, I hadn't gone to the bank yet, so I asked if he'd hold an item for me. After I went to the bank and spent my twenty dollars, I realized I still hadn't paid the neighbor. So I kind of had to spend that one dollar over my limit, or look REALLY bad to the neighbors! On the up side, the dollar was spent on a little child size picnic table with umbrella and two chairs. Been dying to get a set like that, but they're forty dollars. Mine was only one. Heh!! ;-)

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