Clearly I am not cut out to have a yard sale. Neither are my pals. We thought we were; we should be.
After all, back when we were active Junior League members, our big fund raiser was something called Bag-A-Bargain. Sure, there was a silent auction and kick-off party involved. There was some corporate sponsorship. But basically, it was one big yard sale held at the fairgrounds. We raised, on average, $50,000. a year. If memory serves, one year it was in the neighborhood of $70,000. Even if you have $30,000 worth of corporate sponsorship and $4000. worth of silent auction, that's still a lot of money from selling junk for six hours on a Saturday. The year Mrs. Classy was president, she contributed $10,000 worth of thrift and won $1,000. for being top Prize Girl. Being president, she did not take advantage of the perk of not having to actually put on that t-shirt and go to the fairgrounds, but she did buy herself some fabulous black pearls. I digress. It's my hobby.
Anyway, even after we (my pals and I) attained Sustainer Status (because Junior League is like Hotel California. You can check out, but you can never leave), Bag-A-Bargain went on, which afforded us the excellent opportunity to rid ourselves of stuff. Those sweet young girls would even price it for us and coo over us because we had, after all, crawled and clawed our way, dead tired and bone dry, to the coveted line that said SUSTAINER.
Then Bag-A-Bargain went away. They replaced it with an even better fundraiser, American Girl Fashion Show. Good on them but our junk was piling up. So I thought we should have a yard sale. Yep. It was my idea. We thought it would be even better if we used the money to help defray the cost of the beach house that Dr. Great Smile found for our upcoming frolic and sabbatical.
Cutest Girl in the World said we could have at her house and took over. ("I am in charge!" she said. "Listen to me!" We did. I love to have an idea and have someone else take it over. It is the best of all worlds.) She put the ad in the paper, got the permit, and directed me to bring Bloody Marys—with salt and olives. Heart Breaker Soul Shaker borrowed tables from her church. The rest of us cleaned out and priced our stuff. We even dug out our old Bag-A-Bargain t-shirts. I guess we thought they would bring us luck.
I left my house before the paper came; that's how early we got started. We were ready with our pasta makers (never out of the box), novelty mugs, bread machines, and Christmas decorations that had seemed a good idea at the time.
Not being the delusional sort, I certainly did not expect to make Bag-A-Bargain caliber money, but I thought people would want our treasures more than they did. Maybe we sold it too cheap and were all too prepared to take less.
We made $274. I figured, with the help of a rejected calculator that didn't sell, that would reduce everyone's part of the beach house rent by about $25.
We don't know where we went wrong, but we do know this: We are out of the yard sale business.
Have you ever had a yard sale? Do you go to them?