Sunday, August 17, 2014

The Final Big Purge

I’m now midway through my final “hell week” of getting all my remaining possessions sold, donated, or moved out of the house.  The priority for the first half of this week was a huge blow-out garage sale.


I really lucked out as this final weekend before my move also happened to be the annual “town-wide garage sale” weekend, so lots of buyers were out roaming our streets!

I’d not advertised a garage sale in over a decade, and was a bit unsure how to do it in this post-newspaper classified age, but I found an app and website that looked pretty popular, , and listed my sale there.  I then also listed it in my tried-and-true Craigslist account as well, and then posted 5 signs in the subdivision to direct folks to my house.

It all seemed to work pretty well as I netted just over $700 for the 2 day sale!

I thought for sure that women would be the first ones waiting for the garage doors to open on Friday morning, but surprisingly, it was the men!  Within an hour, a couple of guys had swooped in to pick my workbench clean of all its small hand tools and excess hardware.  

My caring and generous stepsister came to sit with me and help out both days of the sale and we had fun observing the wide variety of characters who seem drawn to garage sales like moths to a flame! 

  • There was the “cord guy” who came back twice to load up on my miscellaneous electronics cables at 25 cents each.  He said he had a basement full of cords, and we were certain that was no exaggeration!
  • The “humming hoarder” man visited the sale twice as well to load up on anything priced at 25 cents (which was a lot of stuff!).  
  • A lady who saw my LP grill listed on Craigslist came to buy it and ended up buying lots of camping gear as well (she just got a new popup camper).  As she was about to finish up, she noticed my 3 boxes of classical piano sheet music.  Her daughter happens to be a piano teacher, so she ended up buying all 3 boxes.  Good thing she brought a big van, because we managed to nearly fill it!
  • Then there was the cute little “gang” of kids from the neighborhood—all about 6 to 10 years old who took turns weighing each other on my bathroom scale and decided to come back later without their bikes so they could carry some new treasures home.  The oldest boy gave his younger sisters each a quarter to pick something—one found my grandmother’s crystal dining room table bell, and another discovered a small music box.  They gleefully left ringing the bell and playing the music box all the way home (no doubt, their mom will forever hate me for selling them such noise-making treasures!).

But in the end, the garage that had been filled to the brim on Friday morning, looked like this by the end of Saturday:


Most of what’s left are my grandmother’s china and glassware (which I’ll now either consign, sell on eBay, or try selling again in 3 weeks at my stepsister’s garage sale).

My grandmother’s tiny, little magazine end table is the very last piece of furniture I still own (I’ll donate it tomorrow).


Millie has tried every means possible to slow or stop the move from the only home she’s ever known.  When I was moving stuff from the upstairs down to the garage the other day, she strategically positioned herself at the top of the stairs to try and block my path and kept giving me the “I dare you to cross me” look!


Later, when I started clearing out the kitchen cabinets, guess who now decided to sprawl out on the kitchen floor?


Now that her favorite sofa is gone, she’s coming out to the RV in the driveway a bit more willingly, but she’s still far from convinced that her new life of full-time travel will be better than endless afternoons on the sofa.  I’ve got my work cut out for me!


  1. Oh, I want the depression glass plates, I think, and the two white bookshelves. Ha. I don't even dare to go near a garage sale anymore.
    Isn't it true, the characters that we get to meet when we have these sales? I still remember some from 30 years ago.
    A year from now this will all be a distant memory and you will hardly remember what you sold........I don't.
    Enjoy all your progress.

  2. I am so jealous for your upcoming adventure! I do not know your full timing history so I wanted to ask if you intend to have a "home base" anywhere? Good luck and I look forwarding to sharing your travels.


  3. Poor Millie. If only she knew that adventures that were ahead. When we downsized from 5600 sq ft we made $20,000.00 at our garage sale. We just had too much stuff including tons of furniture we never used.

  4. Great sale! I am were you are now...last big blow out is this week
    end for me...neighborhood yard sales...I have been down sizing
    and fixing up house for sale...for the last 6 years...and now I can see
    the light at the end of the tunnel...!!! have had my rig for two years
    now...have fun with your new life!!!!!


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