Start with a clean slate!
A garage sale sign read: Kid's Garage Sale. We couldn't resist. Each sign (obviously made by children) had a red balloon attached and upon arriving at the home, the children (a boy about 11 and a girl about 8) were sitting at a table with lemonade they'd made. Several adults with children were shopping and the mother of the garage salers was sitting on a lawn chair under a big maple tree.
I can never resist a lemonade stand, not because I love lemonade, but because I love it when kids are entrepreneurial. The two children had made the lemonade from fresh lemons and it was quite delicious. They also made the lemonade sign. While I sipped my drink and visited with the mother about this kids' garage sale, several families came and bought toys and clothes.
She told me that every year right around this time she takes a day to help them gut (yes she used the word gut) their rooms of all clothes in drawers and closets and price the items. Just a word on the importance of gutting a closet. If you don't periodically gut a child's closet, it'll end up with little hangers for little kids clothes even after the child heads for college.
This very wise mother told me she supplies sign-making materials and two different colors of dots for pricing. That way each child keeps track of their sales. The kids get the money from the sales (even the lemonade) and she matches it when they go shopping for new school clothes.
She said they look forward to preparing for the garage sale, because they don't look at it like it's TIME TO CLEAN YOUR ROOM but it's time for this fun annual project. She also said, as they begin seeing the money come in for old toys, books and games they no longer use, they look for more things to sell. She said, I've had to watch them carefully when they get the purging urge.
If your kids like to play store, they'll love playing store with their old stuff. The boy was so excited when his old bike, which was way too small for him, sold while we were there! $25 meant $50 to him with the matching policy.
I asked her what she does with the stuff that doesn't sell and she said it goes straight from the drive-way into the van and off to the donation facility for her church. She was adamant that nothing would go back into the house! I pictured those big, scary claws in some parking lots that allow you to go into a parking lot but warn you not to back up because the claws will shred your tires. So once you've put something in your garage sale DON'T let it go back into your house.
This is the perfect time of year to get your kids' room ready for back to school. There's such a wonderful feeling when you start fresh.
Have fun playing store with your kids!
P.S. The Sidetracked Home Executive 3x5 card file system gives you the direction you need to get organized in your home. This is a great time to start. Just click on the cover of the program to order the card file system and the de-junking video.