Timeless Thoughts: Garage/Yard Sales
I’m excited and giddy for this first post for Timeless Thoughts, Tara’s and my new monthly linkup! It’s held every first Saturday of the month but you have two weeks to participate.
So – garage sales, yard sales, car boot sales – you are probably familiar with them. People selling their unwanted ‘junk’ for cheap prices. I’m not going to lie: this brings back ridiculously hilarious, terrible, and fond memories, all rolled into several weekend hours of ‘fun’.
When I was younger, my parents quietly referred to garage sales as ‘GS’, and said it meant Golf Shop, which was quite funny. It took a while for Brandon to catch on as he was really young. We went to a lot of garage sales up until I was thirteen or fourteen then we realised we probably needed to have a garage sale ourselves. 😛
Locating the best garage sales
Garage sales were held at people’s houses, old school halls, or… people’s houses. This is by no means a guide – at all, hahahaha – but my parents hilariously judged the content of a garage sale not only by the content of the classifieds, but on how the house looked on the outside. It sounds a little mean, I know, but they weren’t expecting much from a rather empty yard, or a house that looked rather small.
You could often tell how popular a garage sale was by seeing how many people were outside the house. My parents liked those a lot. 😛 We went driving around local neighbourhoods seeing if there were any garage sales and sometimes went to five or so in one weekend.
The fond memories
My parents were thrilled to find furniture in relatively good condition that could replace the not-so-great furniture that we had at home. That was the main thing they looked out for. My dad searched for electronics, vinyl LPs, CDs and the like. He was really, really into that stuff. I don’t deny that a lot of my hobbies take after his, and we have similar taste in music.
I remember buying my first ever album (with my own money) at a garage sale, and it was Oasis’s debut studio album Definitely Maybe. Other than that, I would look for toys. Oh man, toys. I loooooooved toys as a kid, though I will admit that I noticed a sudden drop in my liking for toys. I was really into dolls and Polly Pockets – I even wrote a ‘Things I Miss’ post about them – I wanted them for all my birthdays and Christmases, until one day I just flat out didn’t want toys anymore. I must have been about twelve years old when I stopped wanting toys.
I used to get a lot of books at garage sales. Because I loved books so much, I never liked to call them ‘used’ – I called them ‘pre-loved’. I built up a huge collection. I have since gotten rid of many of the books since I’ve read them at least three times over and didn’t care too much to read them again.
I loved jewellery from a young age so I also scrounged through people’s old junk to see if I could find any nice bracelets or necklaces. I was also very into making my own jewellery at the time so any little bits I could grab, like charms or chains, helped with my DIY hobby.
The terrible and hilarious, which unfortunately go hand in hand
I remember coming home to trawl through all the new treasures we found. I highly believed that ‘one man’s trash is another man’s treasure’, so there were a few things which I was thrilled to get, that I couldn’t believe that someone didn’t want. My parents obviously thought the same. We came home with our car boot full of stuff, bags full of stuff, and only thirty dollars poorer. But we had like, a new table. Or a new sofa.
I think Brandon once stole some things from garage sales. Really small things like the trinkets I would want. I guess he didn’t think a dollar or so was worth it so he pocketed it instead. I sounds mean, someone was really just trying to make a bit of coin out of whatever he stole!
If I remember correctly, he bought a whole stack of Pokemon cards from one garage sale because he collected them at the time? Something in me tells me that he spent ages looking through some decks just to grab the rare ones. I don’t think my parents wanted to pay $5 for some hologram Charizard card, so we left, upset. I think I vaguely remember some older kid telling us that it was ‘worth heaps’ and he put that price on it. You know, back then, $5 was a lot of money…
A late ‘hobby’, once again
Pondering these garage sale adventures makes me laugh a bit, considering my Live simply posts and the fact that I now love to declutter and minimalise. I don’t even see that many garage sales anymore. The thought of going to a garage sale now makes me shudder a little bit, but it does bring back the fondest of memories.