No, the Easter bunny didn’t make an early stop at our house. And no, I haven’t joined some weird religion that has moved Christmas to March. But I am a member of a club (club, not cult) that made my children’s Saturday morning joy possible.
I am a member of a Moms of Multiples club, a club for parents who have had twins, triplets or more. That fact alone did not bring Christmas to my house in March. But the club’s bi-annual fundraiser did.
In an effort to raise funds for the club and put a little money back in the pockets of the members, the club started holding a Kid’s Stuff Only Yard Sale twice a year.
Members clean out their closets and attics, bringing out gently used kid’s clothes, toys, nursery items, books and videos to sell. We each price our own items, but we put them out in like categories (i.e. all the girls clothes that are size 6 go together, all the toys go together, all the books, etc.).
The club makes 15% of whatever we sell. We take home the rest. Sure it’s not a lot of money, but it’s enough to cover a few extras like a membership at the children’s museum or to cover the cost of the twins’ birthday party. And when you have twins, every little bit helps.
But selling is only half the fun. Members also get to pre-buy. We set up everything on Friday night and the sale is Saturday morning from 8-11. But after we setup, members get first crack at cruising through the isles to find deals.
I am able to find a lot of good deals on clothes this way – and trust me it’s important to get deals when you are buying for two at a time. Most of the clothes are gently used, but some are brand new (kids outgrew them before they got a chance to wear them).
But for my kids, it’s what else I bring home that tickles their fancy. By the time I get home Friday night, they are asleep. But they know Saturday morning some new-to-them toys will be waiting for them.
Last fall I spent $3 and the twins thanked me for an hour. I kid you not. I know you are thinking what did she buy? I bought a box a legos.
But they were just so thrilled at having something new (at least to them) to play with that they would play with them for a few minutes then one of them would come by and thank me. Then they’d go play again and then the other would come by to thank me again. This routine went on for an hour – over a box of legos.
The yard sale lets us rotate toys so the kids don’t get bored with them. They get to try out a lot more toys that if I had to buy them new.
This year when I was tagging things to sale the twins noticed for the first time I was taking some of their toys away. I kept hearing “That’s mine Mommy.” But I explained that they were too big for those toys any more.
But any grumblings disappeared when they saw there bounty Saturday morning. My son got T-Rex Mountain, the ImagiNext dinosaur set. He has been roaring all week. And my daughter is still primping in front of the Princess vanity she got. I paid a fourth of what these items retail for and they are both in great condition.
And when the twins aren’t playing with these toys, they are toting around the Look and Find books I got them. They love to “read” and the only way I can keep them in books (without going broke) is to buy them at the yard sale. We even had to take the new books to dinner with us Saturday night.
And don’t tell the twins (luckily they are two young to read mommy’s articles), but I even picked them up a surprise for their third birthday – something their grandfather wanted to buy them but they were still too young for when he past away last year – a two-passenger motorized jeep. We’ll be giving this gift to them in Grandpa’s memory.
So now you see Christmas doesn’t really come three times a year at our house. We just celebrate one Christmas and two yard sales.
Photos courtesy of Toys R Us.