Friday, July 30, 2010

Friendship and Yard Sales

Hello, My Friends!~~~

Five more days until Suzy and I leave for the WLYS (and doesn't she make a great video? I love it!) and 6 days until we start shopping and shopping and shopping! Now, Suzy and I like many similar things, so you may be wondering (or not!) how we shop together...
Well we have gone to flea markets, estate sales, and yard sales together for many years and have devised a system that works quite well.

1. Whoever finds a treasure first has dibs. Simple.

2. If one of us finds something that can be shared (fabric, a box of buttons, a box of anything that we like and that can be divided), we split the cost and split the goods. We will have a separate bag in the car for such goods and will divvy them up that evening in the hotel roo,

3. If either one of us spies something that she knows the other likes or needs (and actually, do we really need anything?), she alerts the other one to the item. I call it tag team shopping.

That's pretty much it! We don't need or want anything so badly that we would get into an argument over...well, that is unless Suzy decides to nab that piece of Pixieware I need for my collection...XXOO, Beth

Thursday, July 29, 2010

One Week From Today!!

Just making sure the camera and the link to the blog is all set up for videos from the road, next week!!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Yard Sales: How I Roll

Hello, Friends!~~~

As the WLYS is a mere 9 days away, I have been thinking about my "yard saling" strategy. Now, I am very aware that WLYS is not a yard sale in the traditional sense, that there will be vendors in fields and along the road who have travelled far to sell their wares. I also know that Suzy and I will encounter a mixture of traditional yard sales, church sales, and anything in between. But to be honest, the whole thrill of the WLYS is the unknown of what exactly we will find.

I do have a strategy, however tenuous, for the WLYS. Here it is in list form:

1. Carry a reusuable grocery bag anytime we stop at a cluster of sales. These bags are sturdy, lightweight, and foldable. I don't really need one at single sales. My hands usually work fine.

2. Keep moving. I know it'll be hot, it is August after all, but moving is the perfect way for me to beat the heat and to see the most the WLYS has to offer. I know what catches my eye, and I will linger over those goodies, but I know what doesn't and those goods will get narry a glance.

3. Look down in boxes. I can imagine that a lot of vendors will have boxes of goods sitting on the ground or on tables, and it's wortha quick glance or shuffle through to see what's in them. Sometimes the best stuff rests in the bottom of a box!

4. Have small bills so I can give exact change! This is vital to keep moving. No one has to give me change.

5. Carry a water bottle on a strap so I can keep hydrated and have a free hands.

6. My biggest money saving strategy is to ask on priced goods: "Is this your best price?" Saving a dollar here and there adds up. It is relatively easy to get an item marked $6 down to $5. I am always prepared to walk away. I don't bargain at charity or church sales. I usually even the charge price to the nearest $5 increment.

There is a my list. It is by no means complete, and I'm sure you can add to it! In fact, please do so by adding a comment to this post on your favorite yard sale/flae market shopping strategy. ~~~XXOO, Beth

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Dining Out at the Big Sale

Beth and I will be packing a cooler for sure.  Lots of water and some easy snacks. 

Along with all the wonderful junk we hope to find we are looking forward to some good regional cooking.   We are both born and bred in the south, and our mother's always kept a large container of Crisco in the cupboard.  Fried food is very familiar to us.
Normally we both strive to eat a healthy diet, but I'm looking forward to a few greasy treats on this trip :->

We've been hearing from a lot of veterans of the WLYS with some interesting tales and excellent advice.
Michaella just wrote and she has been going to the WLYS for years.  Her note included some great tips about the food.

If you're going to be coming north into KY, keep an eye out between Jamestown and Liberty for a large sale on the right side of the road. You'll see a large sign advertising an amish store. The best thing here is ice cream sold by a group of Amish people. It is churned by Horse power (seriously, a huge Horse). It is very simply made with pure ingredients and is absolutely delicious.

That sounds exactly like the kind of treat I'm talking about!
She also had this to say:

We have been to several churches in KY that have sales and some of them even serve full meals for a very reasonable price.

Church lady home cooking?  Sign me up.  We will definitely be on the look out for the church sales now.  Thanks Michaella!

OK, now I am going to jump from food to the subject of bathrooms.  I know, but one kinda' leads to the other and well, more good advice here:

Be prepared to find that even when buying gas, many gas stations in KY will close their bathrooms to the public (to keep for cleaning them so much).
We like to stop at church sales because a lot of  the time there are clean bathrooms available.

Now I'm hoping there are a lot of churchs along our route.

Photo courtesy of Robisan's

Watching out for the church sales will be Beth's job.  I'm the designated driver on this trip so our deal is, my eyes on the road at all times and Beth will be looking out for the sales to stop at.  Michaella also said:

Your biggest obstacle will be the sheer number of people dashing in and out of traffic to cross the road.

Maybe I should get a cow-catcher for the Honda Pilot just to make things easier :->

photo courtesy of psd

Friday, July 23, 2010

List Making!

Hello, Friends!~~~

Well, with less than 2 weeks to go until the BIG EVENT, I am making my list!

Now bear in mind that this list is not limited to what you see, but it is very important to me to jot down things that I know I'll need when Suzy and I hit the road on August 4th.

I usually don't divide my take-alongs into categories, but I did for this post. As you can see hand sanitizer and wipes are in My Necessary Items category along with money in small bills. That's how I roll :)

XXOO, Beth

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Two Weeks To Go!

Beth and I will be leaving on our big adventure two weeks from today! 

If you recall, we are jumping off our trip from Johnson City, TN, the hometown of MamaPeach.  We will leave Virginia on Wednesday and spend that evening in Johnson City.  Then we will rise very early on Thursday and scoot over to Crossville and start our trek north. 

Lisa from Birmingham, AL sent me some fabulous links to her 2009 blog entries that she wrote about her trip to the WLYS last year.
This is some really good stuff.  She wrote about her trip in three parts.  Start here:

Then go here:

Lisa's blog entries are very interesting and she has lots of great pictures!
Sounds like she had an awesome time.
Finally go here to see all the loot that she scored. 
I'm drooling over some of the stuff in her pictures, let me tell you. 

All photos courtesy of Lisa

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Great Tips Keep Pouring In

I think everyone is getting really geeked up for the big SALE, I know I am.  We are seeing a lot more traffic over here at the Project and I received a very nice email from Michele in Gadsden, AL.
Michele has some great advice :->

I have attended the yard sale for the past 5 yrs and in that time have purchased enough to furnish a garden home for my step-daughter and 2 vacation properties! I am fortunate enough to own a home in Mentone, Alabama that sits directly on the route. I start on Wednesday in Gadsden and drive up to Mentone shopping all of the way! I have found the majority of my things in Alabama and Georgia, I have literally spent the whole time in these areas due to the amount of vendors. There are some returning vendors, as well as, new ones…this year the Mentone Springs Hotel (which is the oldest hotel in Alabama) will be selling some of its contents, since it will be closing and awaiting new owners! I would recommend loose clothing, bottled water, and packing material/twine. I usually take sandwiches and snacks and eat in the car to save time, but there are plenty of vendors selling food along the way. One of treats that I had last year while shopping was a fried Oreo cookie (they also had fried moon pies) and homemade peach ice cream…talk about a sugar high! There is so much to see and you can get bogged down trying to see it all, but there is just no way possible, just pick and area to start and talk to other shoppers along the way, I have changed directions several times based on word of mouth!

Thanks Michele!  Love the advice about checking with fellow shoppers to see where the best "junk" is.  Oh yeah.


Friday, July 9, 2010

Great Tips from a Seasoned WLYS Shopper

WOW!  So far we have heard from some great folks that have been to the WLYS and gotten some interesting feedback.
Linda was kind enough to answer a few questions for us and she has got some great tips. Linda will be attending the WLYS for the 3rd year in a row this time so that makes her a veteran.

 Be sure to pop over to her blog, A la Carte and say hi!

Photo courtesy of Vintage Lilac

1) Are you taking the same route this year and what are your beginning and ending points?

We are not taking the same route this year. The past two years we have driven from Atlanta to Alabama and up to above Chattanooga, which meant we back tracked some. This year we are driving up to Jamestown, KY and then will drive south stopping around Chattanooga and then drive home the next day.

2) How many days will you be at the sale?

Drive up on Thursday, shop days will be Friday and Saturday, we will skip Sunday this year.

3) Do you book your hotel rooms ahead of time or do you just "wing it"?
We book our rooms ahead of time.

4) Are you looking for anything specific, adding to any collections are just buying what ever strikes your fancy?

I have a list of items I would like to look for, collections to add too, but I am open for whatever great deals I find.
This year I will also shop for one of my Blog followers in a contest I will have before Aug 5th when I leave for WLYS.

5) Who is going with you?
My favorite Junk partner and my Honey, Carter

6) In previous years did you spend all your money or did you have some left over?

I have a budget and don't go over it, or not by much. This year I have an ETSY shop so my buying might be a little different.

7) How hard is the parking and how crazy is the driving on the route?

We didn't have too much trouble parking as we tend to stop at large fields full of sellers. Just makes sense for us as we like so many different things and tend to stop shop and then contact each other via cell phone if we loose track of each other. Driving can be bad and my advice be very careful in congested areas where people are going back and forth across the roads.

8) Would you say the selections and the prices are ok, good or great?
All of the above! Some prices are way too high like they were in the antique malls, some are good and then there are those people who are really looking to sell. I ask for their best price, bargain with them if it's still too high and walk away if it's still too much. First day folks are less willing to come down but by later Sat they are usually ready to bargain. Lots of dealers leave after Sat which is why we are skipping Sunday and honestly two days is enough for me.

9) Are the sellers mostly antique dealers that set up along the route or is it mostly folks cleaning out their stuff?

Since we stop in a lot of large fields we see a mixture of antique dealers and some folks who save up and do this yearly. Smaller areas or in people's yards are where you find the folks cleaning out their stuff. Of course you have the flea market folks and the craft booths so its a real mix! You need to take a quick look, see if they have your kind of 'junk' and either shop or move on. I also check prices and if they are all really higher then I'm ready to spend I move on to another booth.

10) Is it hard to get food along the route? Bathrooms?

We try to eat breakfast either at the hotel or a Waffle House or somewhere fast. We take a cooler with water & drinks & snacks for during the day. We try not to stop during the day for food. There are places with food at the large sites and lots of folks have water for sale. We then get a good dinner and crash!

BATHROOMS... WELL BE PREPARED FOR PORTA POTTIES! Another plus in large areas of sellers is porta potties. (take some tissue with you also, they run out).


Photo courtesy of jbcurio

That is some really helpful info, but Linda didn't stop there.  She had more to add and this is the best advice yet:

Here are a few things I would love to share with you that I have learned. Wear a hat, it is so hot and you will get sunburned. Comfy shoes for sure and light clothing. I take a tote bag to put my purchases in ( I buy a lot of smalls). I keep my money in a fanny pack or small bag that goes across my body, along with my sunglasses, phone and camera. Leaves my hands free except for the tote or backpack style tote. I keep paper in the car as so many dealers just don't have that much to wrap stuff in and I want my treasures to get home in one piece. I also keep some boxes in the car to separate the breakables from my Honey's stuff which tends to be larger and heavier. I take wipes(it is dirty out there), a disposable poncho, money in small bills and a smile. Last year I bought a little book and recorded all my purchases as soon as I had time. Helps me keep track of what I buy and what I spend!

And lastly these great words of wisdom for those of us who will be virgins to the WLYS this year :->

 It is fun but exhausting and you need to have patience and a good attitude! Have Fun!

I am really lovin' all Linda's great tips and advice.  I especially love the idea of taking a small notebook along to record the purchases.   That way when we get home we can tally it all up and figure out how we managed to spend so much money!

Only 26 more days until Beth and I leave for TN and the WLYS!!