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Thursday, December 30, 2010

Christmas done "My Dear Trash" Style

Twas the night before Christmas so check out the trash,
Because buying my gifts "used" helped me save lots of cash.
The kids all dressed up in their matching P.J sets.
While the counselor and I knew we wouldn't be getting any rest
The boys finally fell asleep, 
(yes, Chandler's under there)
the princess did too
And Santa Claus and his elf’s had plenty to do.

I started shopping for Christmas presents a year ago.  That’s the beauty of shopping trash.  You never know what you're going to find. I have to be creative as to how I hide it, but this Christmas proved to be a good one indeed.
Let’s start with Chandler’s guitar.  He’s wanted one for several months, so I put the vibe out and this is what I found.
It was $20.00 at a garage sale, but technically it was free.
You see, I purchased this $5.00 partition at the same time and later sold it for $45.00 on craig's list.
 I earned $20.00, plus the guitar.
Same with Reef’s little Radio Flyer trike.
I paid $9.99 for it at Mesa Thrift.  On the same outing, I purchased these $9.99 J. Crew high heel trouser jeans.
  I later sold them on eBay for $24.99, so technically, the trike was free.
The mini-trampoline was $2.00, a favorite of the kids when they are playing Wii basketball.  
They jump, they shoot, and they score.
Speaking of scoring, Santa really scored with this $4.99 basketball hoop he found at Goodwill.  
I purchased this Nightmare Before Christmas shirt for $1.00 the same day. 
Who else out there dig's scrawny pale guys?  
This shirt sold for $6.99.
I guess that makes the basketball hoop another freebie.
Check out these slams on Christmas morning.
Oh, looks like the counselor got posterized!  Sha-zam!
Payson loves cuddling up with this giant Phoenix Suns flannel blanket.  
I found it this summer at Goodwill when no one is shopping for blankets.
And Chandler's medical dictionary from D.I.
Yes, he's the type of kid who asks for a medical dictionary for Christmas.
We could use another doctor in the family.
Mayer got the race dirt bike he wanted, thanks to a $20.00 garage sale find the last Saturday before Christmas.
And little Sister's cabbage patch dolls, all for under $10.00.
Giving isn't all about saving money,
but if you can do both at the same time, why not.
Linking up to:

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Trash To Cash Wednesday!

I decided to take two weeks off for the holidays from selling on ebay, however, I still relisted a few items (23 items to be exact) Now that ebay has a bulk relist button, it only takes a minute or two to relist multiple items. So, how'd I do with items that previously didn't sell? Not too bad...
This Max Studio size M Chocolate Brown Knit Dress sold for $9.00
This new with tags BCBG Maxazria size M white cotton top also sold for $9.00And these Gap long and lean size 10 long denim jeans sold for $21.50! Overall, 8 of the 23 items sold- not bad considering it was Christmas week and it took me no time at all to hit the relist button. Here's the weeks totals...

Ebay Profits:$94.50
Craigslist Profits:0
Costs: 0 (clothes), 27.18(ebay fees- I did 87 relists for this next week), 12.86 (paypal fees)
Total Profit: $54.46

Aside from my 87 relists, I'll also be taking this week off- But then it's full steam ahead for the the first week in January. Let us know how you're holiday sales are going. Love, Kelly.

A New Tradition Has Been Born

We love our neighbors! With only 8 houses on our street, our neighbors are our close friends. This year I wanted to plan a street activity to celebrate Christmas. I thought a tamale making party would be perfect. We all gathered in the street with chairs and a dish to share and began the tamale assembly process...
I had a sweet friend come over a few days earlier to teach me how to make authentic tamales! We prepared half the tamales that day, so we'd be able to eat right after assembly at the party. Here's some of the yummy dishes our neighbors shared...We had Tamales, Taco Salad, Mexican rice, Chili Relleno casserole, Cheesecake, Chips & Salsa, Wedding Cookies, Jello Salad, 7 layer dip, bean dip and more!We had luminaries to light the way, not to mention one of our neighbors amazing light displays...

With a fire pit to keep us warm, we enjoyed good conversation and amazing food. Can't wait to do it again next year! Love, Kelly

Monday, December 27, 2010

A Christmas Rocking Chair

I prayed for an experience that would put me in the Christmas spirit.  I love Christmas time, but it had been hectic.  I worked too much, cleaned too little and ignored the days passing by.  Christmas was just around the corner and I had yet to slow down, so I found a clean spot on my bedroom floor and finally got down on my knees. 
“Please send me someone,” was my prayer and God knew exactly what I meant.
I needed someone to share with or give to. I needed to slow down and do something for someone.  I wanted to be like Jesus, if just for a moment.
The stories of Jesus inspire me in so many ways, but around Christmas time I want to exemplify what Christ would do.  An experience like this changes things and keeps life in perspective.  This is the gift I wanted for myself.
God answered my prayer.  And I’m so busy; He had to send my experience knocking on my front door.
This person came to me from a Craig’s list advertisement.
Several weeks ago, I found this vintage rocking chair at a garage sale.  I paid $10.00 for it.
I brought it home, cleaned it up and put it on Craig’s list for $25.00.
The day before Christmas Eve, I received a phone call from Heidi.  She was pregnant with her first child and looking for a special chair.
“Something I can rock my baby boy in,” she said. 
I convinced her this was just the chair.  Shabby, unique and sturdy.
On the morning of Christmas Eve, Heidi came to my house.  Not uncommon for me, I’d forgotten I had scheduled to meet her at 10:00am and opened the door still in my pajamas.  I invited her in; not really knowing who she was until she reminded me we had spoken on the phone.
“Oh, yes, the rocking chair,” I said as I led her down the hall to my daughter’s nursery.
It was love at first site.  She loved the chair.
“I want everything to be so special,” she said, patting her bulging belly.  “This will be my only child and I want to enjoy every minute.”
“I wouldn’t be so sure about that,” I said.  “Kids are so amazing, you can’t stop and just one.”
“Oh, this will be my only one,” she said with assurance.  “My husband passed away and I’ll be raising our child on my own.”
In an instant, I was thrown into the moment.  My minded stop racing with all the things I needed to do through out the day; the laundry pile, the messy kitchen sink and getting Christmas cards mailed.   I was looking into the eyes of a beautiful lady, pregnant with a child from a man she dearly loved, a man who wouldn’t be there, holding her hand along her journey of motherhood. 
I thought of the baby and only imagined what he must mean to her.
I’m sure she’d been asked these questions many times before, but I asked how she was holding up, how she was feeling and if she needed any assistance.  I asked about her husband, what he was like and how long they’d been married.  
She assured me she was fine.  She had a great job, benefits for her and the baby and loving family waiting for her back east.
“I still feel him near me all the time,” she said, opening a bit of her heart to me.  “I believe I’ll see my husband again.  I know he’s raising this baby with me.”
Before I knew it, we were both crying.  We hugged.  When we talked, I looked into her eyes and realized this was the person I was praying for.  Heidi was the person who I wanted to help.  
What would Jesus do?  
I wanted to give her the rocking chair.
She was hesitant at first, not wanting pity.
“I’ve been praying for you all along,” I said as I carried the rocking chair out to her car.  “Thank you so much for finding me and sharing your heart with me.  I’ll be praying for you everyday,” I said.
We exchanged phone numbers and I watched as she drove away, the rocking chair peeking out the back of her car window.

Thank you, Heavenly Father for hearing my soft, worn-out, short prayer. 
Thank you for knowing the best way for me to celebrate Christmas was to feel close to my Savior.
And thank you for rocking chairs, so we mother’s have a place to sit and hold our cherished baby.  A place to gaze into their eyes and see a piece of heaven, a place where we can sing lullabies, a place where angels can stop by and visit for a while.