OK, let's face it, going to garage sales isn't brain surgery, but finding them can sometimes be challenging. If the garage sale signs aren't placed just right, then we might have to call on our maneuvering skills or we'll be meandering aimlessly through neighborhoods searching for treasures. Where we put our signs is critical to a successful sale. Julia Hooper found that out the hard way.
"There were no other signs up when I put mine up, so I didn't think it'd be a problem," she said.
But it was.
Julia was having a garage sale recently in east Mesa. She posted eight signs at 6:30 in the morning, hitting all the major intersections near her home. Little did she know a neighbor would put up signs after her and take away some of her business.
I discovered such sign hijacking one Saturday morning while doing what I'm always doing on a weekend morning - garage saling. Julia's pretty pink neon signs caught my eye (I just love pink!). On the sign, the words "Garage Sale" along with an arrow were printed clearly with a thick stroke of a black marking pen. I turned left at the corner, planning on going to her sale by following her pink signs. But lo and behold, what is this I see before me just a block up the street? It's another type of garage sale sign. This one's made out of a cardboard box and has different colors. Now I've got a mystery on my hands. Did Julia run out of pink signs and switch to another type, or is this a different sale, thrown by someone else? After some intense investigations (read: a little bit of driving!), I was able to solve it.
Summer's version of post-Thanksgiving Black Friday drew crowds Saturday to Hidden Valley as shoppers lined up after sunrise and began staking claim to their favorite items.
People could choose from about 175 homes to shop during Hidden Valley's 16th annual community garage sale.
"I usually look for gifts and sometimes books," said shopper Araceli Rodriguez, 15, a McQueen High School student. "Here the books are 50 cents and at a store, they're $4."
Pebble Beach Drive resident Bud Nixon said he sold most of the items he put out and that the event was a good way to clear his house before he moved.
"We had a chimnea, and we could have sold it 20 times," said Nixon, 62. "It sold first thing.
"It's a fun thing to do, there are lots of friendly people, and we got rid of a lot of stuff we won't have to move."
Coordinator Bud Johnson, an East Hidden Valley Drive resident who started the garage sale in 1990, said Saturday's event was a success and that its size increases gradually each year.
A few weeks ago our family had our annual garage sale.
If you have never had one or participated in one, it is really a great concept. The concept is really quite simple.
First, you gather up all of your priceless, "I can't live without it," "what was I thinking when I bought this," "it is too good to throw away," "we should keep it for the grandchildren," and "what is this" stuff you have accumulated over the years.
Second, you convince yourself that someone else might think they couldn't live without your precious items.
Garage sale shopping is smart and you can save a lot of money if there is something at the sale you could use. There are bargains galore.
It was fun watching and listening to people as they shopped the "bargains" at the King "something for everyone" garage sale.
There are two kinds of people in this world; those who enjoy a good yard sale and those who don't; those who have yard sales and those who don't.
Have you ever wondered what separates a good yard sale from a bad one? Emily Post probably doesn't have a chapter on yard sales, but yard sale etiquette does exist. Yard sale etiquette goes both ways.
There are tips for the one having the yard sale and for those who attend. It's just amazing how tacky and thoughtless some people can become. The following are some tips on yard sale etiquette.
If you hang a yard sale sign up, put the date of the sale. Don't just put Friday and Saturday. If you never intend to take the sign back down, put the year on it as well. There's a "Moving Sale" sign hanging that I have passed once a week for at least six months. It gets me every time. I step on my brakes, my heart rate accelerates and then I remember it's the same old sign.
Never, and I do mean never, sell underwear at a yard sale. Just don't do it. Please don't make me have to spell out all the reasons why that is a bad idea. Suffice it to say it's in bad taste and a dead giveaway that you probably don't have good art or any other hidden treasures worth digging for.
Last Saturday morning I woke up in the wee hours, put my daughter in her car seat and sped off to meet up with my friends Martha and Eric so we could play my very favourite full-contact sport: Hitting the garage sales.
If there's anything more thrilling than a hand-written "Yard Sale!" sign, then I certainly can't think of it. Before I can even stop the car, my heart's already pounding at the sight of a lawn full of my fellow shoppers pawing at what could be my greatest find!
It's all I can do not to yell "FIRE!" and send everyone running so I can crawl, commando-style, straight to the best loot.
If you don't see the appeal of a yard full of stuff somebody else doesn't want, let me share with you a little secret, won over many hours of sleuthing: Everything is not as it appears.
Take an old garden gate -- with a little love, it can be a wall hanging, a rack for potholders or a headboard.