Curb Find: Vending Machines

Vending Machines

While we were out yard-saling this morning, we passed a curb pile with vending machine parts. What a fun find! We loaded everything into the car, and when we got home, we had enough pieces to put three machines together, with plenty of leftovers.

Vending Machine Parts

See all the extras? We even have the different dispensing wheels that you need to sell gumballs, bouncy balls, etc.

Double Vending Machine

And we rescued this double machine, too.

I’m not sure what we’ll do with them yet, but if nothing else, I think they’d be a cool way to store some of our art supplies. Wouldn’t the three red ones look cool sitting on a shelf?

2014 World’s Longest Yard Sale Finds

We made our annual trek to the World’s Longest Yard Sale this past weekend, and while the weather seemed to keep a lot of vendors away, we still managed to find a few deals. Here’s a look at this year’s haul:

Vintage Enameled Lights

I love these vintage enameled lights (it’s the kind of lighting that you might have found in a school or industrial building back in the day), but they’re getting popular, and that means they’re getting pricey. I saw some going for as much as $125 a piece! I lucked into an end-of-the-sale deal, and got two for $30 (the seller was originally asking $38 for the big one). Later in the day, I scooped up another shade for $5. I’m sure with a little patience, I’ll find everything else I need to make it complete.

[Read more...]

How to Sanitize Used Shoes

Stomping around in someone else’s shoes isn’t something I normally recommend, but from time to time I’ll come across a really nice pair of shoes at a yard sale that look like they were worn once. And when that happens, we’ll, they’re coming home with me.

Let me give you a few examples …

Black Keen Sandals

These Keen sandals were $4 at a consignment sale.

New Balance Mary Jane Sneakers

These New Balance Mary Jane sneakers were $1 at a yard sale.

Merrell Sandals

These Merrell sandals were $5.99 at a church rummage sale.

Coach Boots

And these Coach boots were $7 at a yard sale.

All of these shoes are from brands that are known for their quality, and they’re in great condition. And here’s the thing … these are all shoes that we’ve been wearing for a while, so they were even nicer when we bought them. If I can get shoes like this at yard sale prices, I feel like I’d be crazy to pass them up.

But buying used shoes (even worn-once shoes) means you’re buying something that someone else’s feet have been in. How can you ensure that you aren’t buying something with athlete’s foot?

You can’t, but you can sanitize them, so that it’s not a concern. Just stick your new shoes out in the sun for a few hours, and you’ll be good to go. Sunlight is a natural disinfectant. In fact, if you buy your shoes at a yard sale on a hot summer day, they’ve probably already been baking in the sun for a few hours.

How Do You Feel About Used Shoes?

Do you avoid them at all cost? Do you have times when you’re willing to buy them? I’d love to hear your thoughts.

See Also:

College Move-Out Haul

College Finds

Living in a college town has its perks – especially at move out time. It’s amazing to see how much stuff gets left behind each year. The dumpsters quickly fill up; and then all the excess just gets piled up beside them. So, you don’t even have to reach into a dumpster to find good, usable stuff.

Here’s a break down of what we rescued this year:

  • (2) mini fridges (pretty awesome because our drink fridge died a few months ago)
  • A set of storage drawers (I plan to use them to organize my party supplies)
  • (2) binders (tucked away for next school year)
  • Pink duct tape and scrapbook paper (added to the kids’ art supplies)
  • A pair of Tommy Hilfiger sunglasses (my youngest daughter claimed them)
  • A Rubbermaid dish drainer
  • (2) Caddies (we’ll use them to hold art supplies)
  • (3) Ice cube trays (found inside the refrigerators)
  • A magnetic pencil pouch (perfect as a locker accessory)
  • A box of lime green thumb tacks

What do you think of our haul? Would you have rescued these things?

See Also:

Have Kids? What to Look for at Yard Sales

Yard Sale

Buying your kids’ clothes and toys at yard sales is a great way to save money, but don’t stop there. Here are other things to keep an eye out for when you’re yard saling:

Holiday clothing (Easter dresses, Christmas dresses, holiday-themed shirts and sweaters, tights, dress shoes, suits, dress pants, dress shirts, ties)
Holiday decor and gifts (Easter baskets and eggs, stuffed animals, holiday movies, stocking and basket stuffers and other giftable items)
Halloween costumes
Winter gear (snow suits, winter coats, boots, hats, gloves, mittens, scarves, ear muffs)
Rain gear (rain coats, umbrellas, galoshes)
School gear (backpacks, lunchboxes, school supplies, locker accessories)
Sports equipment (bats, balls, protective gear, uniforms)
Scout uniforms and equipment (handbooks, sleeping bags, mess kits, pup tents)
Musical instruments