Friday, October 08, 2010

Life at a Garage Sale

Last weekend we did a garage sale with my grandma. For us it was hopeful attempt #2 happening in Highland Indiana, as lame attempt #1 back in August was in the city.

Totally different experience.  We had more people in the first 30 minutes last weekend then we had at the entire sale in August.  We also quadrupled our profits.  Let's hear it for Hoosierland when it comes to garage sales!

The hardest part of garage sales is not setting them up.  The hardest part is not the pricing.  It's not running the sale or breaking things down.  The hardest part of the sale is figuring out what you want to get rid of.

Some things are easy.  Clothes that don't fit.  Toys that haven't been played with in months or are slightly broken.  Things you got for Christmas that you had no idea what they were but you smiled and said thank you and said you loved it.  Not too difficult to let go of some things.

Other things are really hard to let go of.

That concert t-shirt not worn in years because it doesn't fit and has a hole in it. The musical snow globe with only half the water.  An old board game.  A stack of Little Golden Books.  An old rocking chair everyone is slightly afraid to sit in.

Some things are hard to let go of.


Because that was one of the best concerts you ever raised your fist at; you remember who you were with and what Denny's you went to afterwards.
Because the snow globe was a gift from your childhood best friend who moved away.
Because that was the board game you would always play together as a family.
Because those were the books your dad would read to you before bed.
Because that was your grandma's rocking chair, the one she would rock you to sleep in.

It's not the stuff we're hesitant to let go of, it's the memories.  One person sees junk on the table, we see our links to the past - to how things used to be.  That's hard to let go of.

Some things we do need to be let go of.  Whether because there is just no room in the present for it or because we don't want to end up on Hoarders, we need to let go.  The past won't return. Things can't be as they were.  It may be that we can't see the present or future clearly because we are too distracted by all the clutter of the past.

Some things we need to take back in the house.  An old set of china is priced ridiculously low at $5 for the whole set. We don't care that we could get over $100 for it on ebay because we just want the set out of the house; those were the dishes on the table when the big fight happened and she left. But selling the china doesn't bring in change. However, bringing it in the house, embracing it and dealing with it can.  Sometimes we can't see the the present or future clearly because we are avoiding the past.  We need to look back before we can move forward.

The hard part is knowing which is which.  Which do you take back in and which do you put out on the card tables?

Hold the stuff you are unsure of up to someone else.  Ask them, "What do you think this is worth?"  They may give you a price. They may call you nuts for getting rid of it.

We may deceive ourselves and call something junk, but another person can show us the value in it.  We may deceive ourself and call something a treasure, but another person may roll their eyes, come over and say, "give it to me," then put it on the sale table for us.

Truth be told - we all need to clean house.

Don't throw away the wrong stuff.

Don't keep stuff you don't need.

Everyone can have a garage sale.

Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. - Matthew 5:8

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