One of my (Christy) favorite times of the week is Saturday morning. For the last 2 months, I have set my alarm for 6:30 am on Saturday morning and headed out the door by 7. You may wonder why...who would choose to wake up this early on a Saturday morning? Well, the reason lies in the many yard sales that occur in Louisville. I believe that Louisville is the absolute best city for yard sales! After I've had my morning coffee and muffin at "My Favorite Muffin" near my house and had some solitude and quiet time reading my devotional and Bible, I get to work searching the "yard sale page" of the Courier Journal. There are probably one hundred yard sales featured each week! I choose a section of town and map out my journey at the little bistro table in the muffin shop. Of course, I have on no make-up, a baseball cap, and clothes that could be my jammies...but aren't...so if you live in Louisville and decide to join me, this is what you get. A few friends have joined me in the recent weeks, Rebecca Sekelsky and I hit the Hurstbourne Subdivison yard sales, and Dawn Dausman and Kim Carpenter and I shopped Strathmoor Community.
I think that the reason I love this time of the week is because I love getting up on my own and not making juice or "eggs and toast" as Charlie always requests. I get into the car without buckling up anyone but myself. I sit at a little table without picking up thrown utensils and messes, nor feeding a baby in between bites! Then, I read my Bible and pray without having to discipline, get things, clean up things, and protect Chandler from Charlie's "playing", all before saying "Amen". It's MY time and I love it!
Not only that, but there is something magical and even spirirtual about buying someone else's junk and redeeming it into something useful! Where else do you find the contents of people's basements, closets, and 50-year old boxes, all arranged neatly on a card table with little prices that are negotiable? There's great pride in "talking the owner down" from $2 to $1 on a set of napkin rings that could be transformed into curtain hardware!
So far, my best buy has been the "faux adorondak chair and ottoman" that I bought for $7. It currently sits under a great shade tree in my backyard. My next favorite are the two shutters I bought for $4 TOGETHER that I converted into a message/picture board. As most of you know, I'm always trying to "organize" something, so to hold the little memos and postcards that get lost in the drawer (or tossed in the trash), I hung two shutters together on a wall in the kitchen. Although they are still awaiting a fresh coat of paint, they are working just fine. And my final "gold nugget" was the message board I bought for $1. We needed something to hold the mail, who doesnt'? So, I bought this pee-green mail holder with a magnetic board attached. I didn't like the color, so I taped off the magnetic part and the little hooks to hold keys and spray painted the rest black. It looks great right by the door.
I know its a little "sentimental" to share these finds with the world, but you know, it's feels so good to take something that noone else wants and fix it up and use it. I wonder if that's how God feels when he redeems us out of our old life and gives us purpose and usefulness. When I look at those "finds", and I don't see what they might have been...trash, junk, or unwated items in old boxes...but I see what they have become: a chair to watch my boys play in the back yard and capture memories of a stage in life that can never be repeated; or a message board to keep track of little cards of encouragement from dear friends who love us so; or a mail holder to hold our mail and keys as we enter our home and leave little love notes to each other as we come and go.
For me, yard sale-ing is not just about saving money, but its about redemption. All of us, at one time, were junk on a card table, and God has made us incredibly meaningful and purposeful. Thank God for His redeeming love and grace.