You’ve caught me in spring cleaning mode. When the daffodils start waving their cheerful heads around and the scent of hyacinths wafts through the garden, happiness for me is a warm duster. I feel compelled to run about the house wiping away cobwebs and clearing out any old clutter that’s been getting under my feet all winter. It’s a terrible affliction and needless to say DJ, who is still labouring under the impression that the floor is a wardrobe, thinks I’m insane…and he’s probably right. While other, more sensible people were relaxing, I spent most of Sunday with a black bin bag and recycling bag in each hand, recycling old magazines, throwing out rubbish and collecting together any items that I don’t want or need anymore.
Now, in the old days I would merely stick these in a box or a carrier bag and head down to the nearest charity shop with them. But in the interests of frugality, I now have to consider whether it would be thriftier to claw back some cash by flogging them on Ebay or Amazon. Or – dare I say it – picking out a few of the items to see if they might represent…ahem…re-gifting opportunities for friends’ birthdays or for Christmas. That is – hoping they haven’t already spotted the items collecting dust around the house or – horror of horrors – accidentally giving them back to the same friend who purchased it…Eek! That would be a terrible social faux pas.
I’ve got a few reasonably new DVDs that I don’t think I really want anymore, so might I try to sell them on Amazon/ebay. Anybody want a box set of After Life – the creepy series with Lesley Sharp as a slightly batty medium? I’ve also got a lot of books that I’m unlikely to read again, including some novels and one or two cookbooks I don’t use. But I’m in two minds about selling some of them. I’ve sold books on Amazon before and it’s fairly easy, but the problem is there are often so many copies of certain books for sale that the prices are dirt cheap and the profit so slim it’s hardly worth the bother of going to the post office to send them. Especially now our local one has closed.
I was also a bit shocked by how often things seemed to go missing courtesy of lovely Royal Mail – that’s if my customers were telling the truth! I was tormented by emails from an overly keen customer demanding to know where her copy of You Are What You Eat by Gillian McKeith was, practically from the day she’d ordered it, and sure enough when I did post it, it disappeared. To be honest I think a small hole in a mailroom floor was the best place for it! But I refunded her the full amount of course, to ensure I got good feedback, which was a small pain in the wallet. Has anyone else sold stuff on ebay etc.? What were you experiences?
Meanwhile, with that spring feeling enveloping me, I’m compelled to have a real spring clean in terms of my frugal outlook and get thrifty. And I need your help. What I want to know is: what are your favourite thrifty tips/ideas? For example – one of my favourite ones from the living on a pension experiment, one reader suggested, was shaking the petrol pump hose when you finished filling up to get the eggcup sized amount still left in there! I always do that now when I fill up. All the best tips I’m going to compile in a rundown of the top 20 or 30 – depending on how frugal you are feeling. So get your frugal thinking caps on and get in touch!