Sunday, February 26, 2012

My night out

Well, our couple's dinner at church last night was a huge success. There were a lot of couples (some I didn't even know!) all dressed up. Our church sanctuary was turned into a banquet room and the meal was wonderful -all hand made by women in our church. Chicken Kiev, seasoned carrots, smashed potatoes, rolls, a strawberry & lemon poppyseed salad and cheesecake with a berry drizzle for dessert. Yum!

Here are the photos that I took. One of my friends snapped a bunch more and she said they will be posted to her Facebook account.

The hubby & me...married almost 10 years now. He was too tall to stand under the lighted canopy they had. LOL!

I went with a plain cocktail dress which I wear to almost all of the fancier events in my life (almost none right now). I'm glad I did since the other dress was even fancier and some woman were in pants so I may have looked out of place if I went too dressy. I borrowed the shrug from my ebay closet. Oh- and please ignore the gray shoes. They are my most comfortable heels and I do not own black heels right now.

I wore my hair in a low ponytail for the event so it stayed out of my face. But here is a photo of how my hair turned out. A lighter shade of my usual brown. Oh well, I guess I am not meant to be "strawberry blonde" (which was the shade on the three boxes I used).

Well...I better go get ready for church. We leave in an hour and I am still in my pajamas. Bye for now!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Saturday Dresses

Tonight our church is having a couple's dinner. A lot of our friends are going and we are too.

That means we are dressing up today. During the last two months I have dressed up...ZERO times. I use to dress up for work all the time but when your job is ebay and you are sitting at home typing & photographing all day or possibly going to a thrift store, you just don't put in the effort. Well, atleast I don't. My regular uniform is now jeans or yoga pants and a hoodie.

I tried on basically all the dresses in my closet and my ebay inventory. I tried on a total of 20 dresses. And I wound up having basically two choices. Both of which came out of my closet. I will let the hubby decide later today.

Also on the schedule for today is dying my hair, shaving my legs and giving myself a manicure and facial. It has been 5 months since I have last dyed my hair and so I am going for something different. RED!

I will post photos tomorrow of the hair, dress and our night out.

Friday Followd

A fairly quick Friday follow since the hubby & I are helping a couple in our church paint their bathroom yesterday & today.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Ebay Sales

Ebay is currently running a special listing sale. If you own a ebay store (the basic store is $15.95 a month), you get to list any item on auction for free. There is no limit to how many you put on and they will all be free.

This started last Wednesday and will continue to this coming Tuesday.

For the last four days I have been putting a TON of items on auction. I put my store in vacation mode and listed all the items that were previously in the store at auction. I listed them for one day. Normally I don't do "one day auctions" because a lot of people miss seeing them. I believe 5 or 7 days are best. But I wanted to try something different. I listed about 350 items at a price I would be happy selling them for and then watched my sales.

Day 1: I sold 27 items for a sales total of $473. The items that were not sold on the one-day auctions were relisted for another day.
Day 2: I sold 24 items for a sales total of $441. I again put the unsold items back on a one-day listing.
Day 3 (yesterday): I sold 21 items for a total of $471. I listed the rest of the unsold stuff last night.

I have been printing shipping labels around the clock - ha! 70+ packages is a lot of work!

Here are a few things that did fairly well:

Etro cashmere cardigan, sold for $68.33.

St. John Collection skirt. St. John has a great following on ebay for their "Santana" knit fabric if you can find them at thrifts. This basic skirt sold for $64.99.

I was in love with this dress. It was from the late 1960's or early 1970's and it had lantern sleeves and a train. (Swoon!). It sold for $55.

A cache prom or cocktail dress. This one went for $50.

I came across a ton of Berek pieces a few weeks back. A few have done between $25-$30 which is usual for Berek. This piece sold for $45.

I don't pick up a lot of shoes because they are expensive to ship and I don't do well with them. I did pick this pair of Dansko's up though. These have a following and are SUPER comfy. I would have kept these for myself if they were a bit bigger. They sold for almost $30 and they were used.

Today we are off to church, then the supermarket and then back home to nap. I am trying to eat healthier which is quite expensive in our area.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Thrift store finds

I promised a post on what I found at the thrift yesterday. I found just a few things. I went to a closer, smaller thrift and found about 10 items within an hour. I came home early so I could sit in on my father-in-law being assessed for meals on wheels. Thankfully he qualified and will start having meals delivered on Friday. He is a bit hesitant about accepting the help so I hope the meals are yummy for him!

I listed the items I found after they were washed and woke up to TWO of them already selling! The two items more than paid for my entire bill & the gas I spent yesterday.

1. Talbots 100% pure camel suit. This one may sit for awhile since winter is almost over. The thrift had a sale that you purchased one outfit/suit and got another for $1 and I couldn't pass it up.

2. The second Talbots suit I got. This one is done in moleskin. Can I tell you how hard the color black is to photograph?!?

3. Dressbarn dress which has already sold. It was new with tags and it sold for $30 last night.

4. A brand new, pure silk Talbots skirt in a size 14.

5. A vintage Valentino skirt. This skirt fits me and I had a hard time deciding to list or keep it. I already have a black skirt though and no need in my life (right now) to wear skirts. So I listed it.

6. Geiger is a brand that usually doesn't sell well. With that being said, I cannot stop myself from picking them up. This one was so whimsical with insects & flowers. We'll see if I can get it to sell!

7. J. Jill corduroy skirt. This isn't the season for corduroy so I priced this one low - $14.99. And it already sold!

8. This sweater was meant for my husband. My husband dresses like a toddler - brightly colored cotton t-shirts that are oversized and either sweats or jeans, depending on where we are going. This sweater was his size and was so completely different from anything he has. He tried it on and then took it right back off. A girl can try, right? Anyway, it is listed.

I listed a few other things that were laying around. We cleaned out my father-in-law's "can cupboard" and found a few vintage fishing reels and a few things my husband probably forgot that were down there.

Overall I did pretty well on my quick thrift trip and with the day.

Today I am off to Pittsburgh and this is a 1.5 hour trip. There are three great thrifts (2 there and 1 along the way). I am hoping to get atleast 50 pieces since I am out of things to list!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Recent Ebay Sales

This week is going to be busy. My father-in-law is being assessed for meals on wheels and a few Veteran's programs tomorrow. On Wednesday I am at the dentist which means my whole day will be shot. The dentist thankfully gives me calming pills which knocks me out. And I have a friend coming over sometime too. Yup, a real life friend. I met her at church and we had a connection immediately.

Here are a few recent sales I had:

TSE cashmere sweater, sold for $40. TSE is a famous cashmere brand that sells in higher end department stores.

Iceberg jeans don't do well usually. They did have a line with cartoon characters that were sold awhile back and they do okay on ebay. These sold for $27 due to a flaw - the button on the fly was missing.

Swimsuits are starting to sell in stores and on ebay. This Lands' End two piece suit went for $25.

I picked this up last year and I didn't realize it was an Anthropologie brand. It has hung in my personal closet since then. Anything I don't wear within 6 months gets sold or re-donated. The brand is "We Love Vera" and it sold within 24 hours for $37. Clearly I should have priced it higher!

A panda cardigan with bamboo buttons up the front. I am SO going to wear these types of "ugly" sweaters when I get older. It sold for $35.

Belldini two-piece top set in a larger size (XL), sold for $32. You can find Belldini at TJ Maxx on clearance occasionally.

This last sale is due to my husband finding these for $4 at a local store and picking them up for me to sell. They sold within two days for $19. I probably could have gotten more if I had waited until next year but I didn't want to have them at the house that long.

I am going shopping again on Tuesday and I will post my findings then.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Fun Blog Questions

What is your favorite flavor of ice cream?
Chocolate Overdose (Chocolate ice cream with chocolate chips, hot fudge and chocolate brownie crumbles. Yum!)

What was the last thing you ate?
A chocolate chip cookie. I made them for church yesterday and I am anxious to get them out of the house tomorrow so I don't eat any more!

What CD is in your CD player right now?
I only own two CDs - both are the Zac Brown Band. One of them is in the car's CD player at all times.

How many keys are on your key ring?
I don't keep a key ring. Our cars are each on their own car ring and are left with the car (they are in a garage). So, I guess the answer is one?

How much money do you have in your wallet?

$2. I don't keep much on me.

List two bad habits that you have.
My bad habits are: 1. Cracking my toes. I truly wish I could stop but I have been doing this for years. 2. Trying to fix everything myself. I want to fix people, broken items, just about anything.

What's your birthstone? Would you change it?
Garnet (January). Growing up I hated it. My sister got a pretty blue stone and my brother got a lime green stone. They went together so well and then my red-brown stone looked so ugly next to it. But I now love it. It is kind of pretty in an ugly way and I like that.

If you had one day to live, what would you do?
Fly to the beach. Probably a closer beach - maybe Jamaica or Mexico. The flight would only take a few hours and then my husband & I could swim and watch the sun set over the water.

Do you know what your name means?

Yes, Mellissa means "honey bee" in Greek.

Has reading a book ever changed your life? Which one and why, if yes?

I read a book years ago that had to do with your brain and how it registers pain. It is called Pain: The Gift Nobody Wants. It was very interesting and so much of the book has stuck with me over the years. It is an inspiring book about how we should feel grateful for feeling pain.

What would you do if you had a million dollars?
This sounds trite but I would help out the children we sponsor through Compassion International. One just experienced a flood that washed away her home. I would probably invest a bit in my retirement fund and use the rest for to see the 11 states I have yet to visit.

Are you good at Chess?
No. I don't have the patience. I know what all the pieces do since the hubby and I played years ago. He is good but of course he has a lot more patience than I do.

Would you rather be rich or healthy?

Would you rather have the power to be invisible or the power to read minds?
Be invisible.

Do you sleep with your closet doors open or closed?

Closed. The hubby stays up MUCH later than I do and would wake me up if it wasn't closed.

Do you take the shampoos and conditioner bottles from hotel?
Sometimes. If I think I will actually use them, I will. Right now we have about 40 sitting in a bin in our linen closet.

Have you ever peed in the woods?

Yes and one more than one occasion.

What is your usual bedtime?
Around 10 but I am in bed by 9:00-9:30 usually. I take the time to read and pray with the hubby.

Wal-Mart, Target or Kmart?
Target. We may be getting one within a half hour and I am pretty excited!

Whats your favorite color?

Friday, February 10, 2012

What I have been cooking/baking...

I hate to cook. Since it is just my hubby & me at home and we rarely ear the same thing, my cooking consists of popping some Tyson chicken strips in the microwave. I remember when I was a teenager and my mom was trying to get me to cook. I would literally cry when it is was 'my night' to cook. I hated it.

But for some strange reason, I love to bake. Probably because I give away my baked items and people seem to appreciate them.

We go to a small church - around 100-120 people - and they have snacks in the back of the sanctuary. The church goers take turns baking and bringing items so there is no real cost to the church budget.

I signed up for this weekend because I knew Valentine's Day is right around the corner. Today I baked hundreds of cookies for our church on Sunday: peanut butter, oatmeal, sugar (iced and non-iced) and chocolate chip cookies.

Here is the photo of most of the cookies. I already separated the ones for my father-in-law and the mailman.

My father-in-law always appreciates the snacks. He is turning 86 this month and I have been helping him out with meals that he can freeze and then thaw & heat in the microwave. Since he eats differently than we do, I make his meals special.

Last week I tried (for the first time ever) a sweet potato casserole. I got the recipe online and modified it a bit. I mashed the sweet potatoes instead of leaving them in chunks and I added marshmallows on top. The result looked good (to those who eat sweet potatoes - not me!) and I made a large batch. I froze 1/2 of what I made so when I make up plates for him in the future I can use the frozen batch.

Here is what the casserole looked like:

And here is what the plates look like before I freeze them:

Does anyone have any good recipes for any other starch? I have done mashed potatoes and now sweet potatoes. I am out of ideas. Ha!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Recent Ebay Sales

I am continuing to do well with the brand "Talbots" so I will start with a few of those sales.

Sold for $30 was this Talbots dress in a size 10P.

This Talbots dress sold for $29 and was a size 14W.

The label was cut from this top but I recognized the top. It was an Anthropologie brand called "Odille". It sold for $31 with 7 bids.

Eileen Fisher almost always does well for me. This jacket was a size XL and sold for $47.

This dress was such a pretty shade of aqua that it stood out on the store racks. J. Crew marks their items with the style. If you google the style number you can usually find the original name of the dress. I also include the style number in the title so people seeking that exact dress can find it. Sold for $29.

I hated to see this happy sweater sell but I was willing to let it go for $100. Isn't it awesome!?! Themed sweaters do well for me. About 1-2 months before Christmas I start to sell "ugly Christmas sweaters" but the crazier the better. This one was by Michael Simon.

I have a love/hate relationship with the brand "St. John". This isn't to be confused with "St. John's Bay" that sells at JC Penney. This is an upsale brand that has a following on ebay. Sometimes I do well with it, sometimes not. This jacket sold for $75 but it took a few months.

I cannot remember if I included this dress in the last blog about ebay sales but here it is again. It is a Cache dress with a carwash hemline. Sold for $80.

Ivan Grundahl is a brand not a lot of people recognize. I sold a sweater months ago for $50 and the brand stuck in my head. I ran across another piece a few weeks ago. There items are usually boxy and done in natural fibers. This jacket/top sold for $35.


On a different note, the hubby & I will be cleaning our basement today. Our basement runs the entire length of the house and we are down there every day. We went from having an apartment and home for the last four years to just having a home. We have accumulated almost double of everything. Thankfully we sold a loveseat and two dressers last week. I have to start posting some of the items on Craigslist to see if they sell. If not, I am in a donating mood! Goodwill will get a lot of big ticket items. I want a clean & organized basement again. :)

This past week I had an appointment with a doctor for my left knee. Back in November while my mom & sister were down we did a lot of walking. On one of the walks I heard a noise in my knee and then it hurt. A lot. It has been off and on for the last two months and I finally made myself go. The doctor thinks I tore my meniscus and wants me to go for an MRI. Which is nearly $1400 and since our insurance deductible is quite high, I will probably have to pay for it. I am wondering if I can just keep taking Advil. $1400 will buy a lot of Advil. Okay...I probably won't do this but seriously it is a lot of money to spend for something that will tell me that I tore something. I wish the photo of my knee came with a couch. We could really use a cool couch.

I hope everyone has an awesome end of the week!

Saturday, February 4, 2012

The Saturday sale that made my day...

I paid $24.99 for this and I debated for a long time whether it was worth buying. I had sold one a few months ago for $70 but it was before Christmas.

I listed it last night and it sold within 24 hours. Sale price? $149.99. The buyer already paid and I will get the dress ready to ship in Monday's mail.


This made my day. Even with ebay & paypal fees taken out, I made over $100!

Wondering who makes it? It was sold at Hot Topic and is a replica of the dress worn by the character Bella in the Twilight Saga movie New Moon.


Does this mean I can go back to bed now?!?

Friday, February 3, 2012

Ebay Finds & Friday Follow

Yesterday I went into Pittsburgh to three thrift stores. I purchased about 50 items for ebay and a few to keep for myself. I listed a few last night and then ran out of steam. I found a few Anthropologie pieces. I am a huge fan of Anthropologie but their items are just too expensive. There is no way I could afford (or want!) to pay $200 for a skirt or top.

Labels that are exclusive to Anthropologie go for a decent amount on ebay and the more unusual the item, the better. I found a few basic pieces but hopefully they bring a bit of cash. I only paid about $1-$2 for them each.

Here is a top by "Little Yellow Button". It is simple but cute with the bows.


This top is by "Edme & Esyllte".


I also found some Ann Taylor, Talbots, Chico's and a ton of dresses. These are what ebay sellers call "bread and butter" pieces. They are every day pieces that bring a decent amount of money but they can sit for a bit. I am hoping to have 275 items up by the end of the week and I may open on ebay store. I have been putting it off since ebay allows non-store sellers to list 50 items for free a month. But after my 50 are done this month I am going to jump in.


Can you believe it is Friday already? Seriously...the weeks are flying by for me. I am thrilled since I know SPRING is around the corner.

Here is the link to a wonderful blog I read almost every day:

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

And the winner is...

The winner for THIS giveaway is...number 1! I will email you Laura and you will have 48 hours to respond.

Thank you to everyone who entered. Stop by the store for $12 hand embroidered pillow cases on sale.

Recent Ebay Sales: Talbots Edition

As most of you know, I sell on ebay. Lately I have been doing very well with the brand "Talbots". As someone who loves clothing, I can tell you Talbots is very well made and their newer lines are beautiful.

Here are some pieces have have sold within the last two weeks:

Talbots Multi-Colored Sweater, Paid $1, Sold for $20. This isn't a huge profit but it was the end of the season when I listed it.

Talbots Black Cropped Pants, Paid about 50-60 cents (at a bag sale), Sold for $17.

Talbots Pink Tweed Career Dress, Paid $4.99, Sold for $30.

Talbots Faux Wrap Dress, Paid $2.50, Sold for $20.

Talbots Jacket with Self Tie Belt, Paid $3.50, Sold for $37.

Talbots Cashmere Sweater, Paid $1, Sold for $20.

Talbots A-Line Skirt, Paid $1, Sold for $17.

Here are some things that are not Talbots but sold within the last two weeks.

Max Studio Ruffle Dress. I loved this dress and almost kept it for myself. Paid $4.99, sold for $39.99.

QVC brands like Quacker Factory, Denim & Co, Susan Graver and Koos Of Course have a bit of a following on ebay if they are different and themed. The crazier the better!
This Koos Of Course jacket & tank did fairly well. Paid $6.99, sold for $35.

I am going shopping again this morning before work and I'll let you know what I find. Yesterday I went to two thrifts about 45 minutes away and came home with a pile of stuff. My favorite from the haul yesterday is this vintage Sears Hawaiian capelet top from the 1970's.