Welcome to herding cats blog!
Never in a million years would I have imagined that I would be writing a blog- much less, a blog about buying and selling used stuff!
Growing up, I would not have ever considered buying second hand items of any description. No garage sales, or swap meets for me! Then I left home for college and had to use my own money. At that point, working in a flower shop in California was not adequate to sustain my Nordstrom taste. A friend introduced me to the local swap meet. I had never seen such a thing before, and it intrigued me. I also began frequenting garage sales, and collected an eclectic variety of necessities to pretty up my digs. I ended up furnishing my rented apartment with a majority of things that were previously used… and it actually looked pretty darn classy! I was on to something.
Years later, when I got married and we bought our home, my husband and I struggled to work with our “inherited” furnishings- many of the pieces were expensive and classic, but very heavy and big for our small starter home. I felt like we were living in a storage facility. We had to get rid of some of the furniture so I decided to consign it. It sold, but we got so little in return, I was disappointed.
Once we had our first child, I joined our local Moms Club and discovered the biannual Mom to Mom sale. As a first time mom, I was initially repulsed by the idea of used baby items for my precious little bundle of joy, but I soon found that everything (ok, nearly everything) can be cleaned or washed and there are a ton of things that have never even been used! I loved the sale so much that I volunteered to be on the sale board and eventually ran the sale as a chair. By kid #2, I really needed to get rid of outgrown and unneeded stuff more than twice a year at the sale. A dear friend had moved to Tennessee and I noticed a group she was in on Facebook, where people took pictures of their stuff and sold it to other members of the group who lived in the area. I thought “why can’t we have this here where we live?” Then we could sell stuff as it is grown out of and not have to store it for 6 months for the next sale. So I decided to start a group myself…
I founded the Mt. Pleasant Mommy Exchange about 7 years ago, starting with 10 or so of my closest mommy friends from the Moms Club and have grown the group to over 3,000 moms. I have no desire to be an impersonal and creepy sale group of 10,000+ members. I care about quality over quantity. Beyond being a group to sell things, it is a community in which its members truly care for one and other. I personally vet each member profile prior to allowing her in the group, and she must be friends with at least one person who is already in the group. Of course there is no way to be completely safe, but I feel that this cuts down on members who could present a threat to our members. You never can be too careful.
Check back soon for more posts. I plan to talk about how I have made literally hundreds of dollars just by getting rid of stuff I don’t need, and rarely buy anything new!