Musings

Tag, You’re It. I’m not.

“I was at a yard sale one day and saw a box marked “Electronic cat and dog caller — guaranteed to work.” I looked inside and was amused to see an electric can opener.”-Author Unknown

As I mentioned in Friday’s post, we staged our very first tag sale this weekend. After going into full-tilt-boogie purge-mode around the house, we had amassed a pile of goods…things nice enough to not just throw out (hello, Recycle! DIY! Pinterest inspiration!) but not nice enough to want to keep. A homeowner’s purgatory of sorts.

So, the girls and I gathered folding tables, tagged items, made some signs and even baked cookies the prior night. See, this was also going to be a little entrepreneurial effort for my girls, too; first lemonade/chocolate chip cookie stand. It’s never too early to learn the value of a dollar.

We also hoped for good weather.

What we ended up with was exactly 1.5 hours of clear skies and $50. Plus a few dollars that the lemonade stand made.

Hurumph.

Everyone has to have a tag sale at least once in their lives. Some friends of ours had one recently and made $700. Guess they had some good, big stuff to move. They are now the poster children of tag sales, as far as I’m concerned. My $50 haul could not look more piddly if I tried. I have tag sale envy.

The entire time I was sitting on my porch watching folks come, eye-ball and meander, I kept hearing my husband’s words…time = money. That’s his business battle cry and one that I think many women, in particular, forget. I will count myself in this group, although I have been seriously working on it in the past few years (after hearing my husband say it so many times). Yes, I knocked myself out gathering, setting up, making posters, tagging…and if I broke it down to an hourly rate with what I walked away with, I probably earned less than a worker in a third world country.

My only rationale was that this was more of a household adventure than a money-making adventure. Yes, I had my hopes, but I also wasn’t counting on them. The stuff that we were selling wasn’t THAT bad. Jeez. I also thought it would be good for our girls to see effort like this in action. It takes hard work to earn the bacon. Without sounding too old, I think the younger set sometimes forget that. God help Gen Y.

This tag sale was also good people-watching, which just amuses me something crazy. You get all types waltzing through. First, there was the family of three who were looking for the new stuff. They spent $25 and we had been open for 15 minutes. I thought that was a good harbinger (wrongo, MaryLou). Then, there was the woman looking for old jewelry. Sorry, chickie…I’m keeping mine. I know decent vintage when I see it and I’m not parting with it. Next, the man who bought a $2 set of glasses (that I had priced at $3…did I care to scrabble over one hundred pennies? no) and readily admitted that he was going to turn around and sell them at a flea market for $10. Huh. He gets points for honesty.

The world of tags sales is certainly a different one. It’s the great recycling project. It’s the great thrill of the hunt. It’s the great emptier of homes. Whatever you call it, check it off your list and do it once. Maybe you’ll end up with $50 and lots of extra chocolate chip cookies and lemonade.

Thank goodness for Craigslist and Goodwill.

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