Garage Sales - a common weekend event occurring in suburbs and towns all across America.
This weekend my own neighborhood held its annual garage sale. Local real estate consultant, Bobbie Ruiz, organized the event and many homeowners jumped at the chance to participate.
With signs posted and assorted household items gathered, homeowners set up the night before in preparation for early morning shoppers!
Me being one of them.
I really hadn't planned on hitting the sales, but after my morning coffee, I decided to take a short bike ride down the block to see what folks had to offer and to simply get out and join the hustle and bustle.
You never know what might show up in a garage sale. You can usually expect to find a wide selection of mismatched coffee mugs, assorted kitchen items, exercise equipment, forgotten stuffed animals, outgrown clothing, board games, old computer monitors, and...
I've known this family for years, having had their children as students in school. I've known them to be creative, family-centered, friendly, and incredibly talented at gardening, but I never knew they had an aviary in their back yard! And apparently they have some very healthy, prolific birds!
Holding the sign so the wind wouldn't blow it away is the father of a current student of mine. Their family happened to be out in the neighborhood. We met this morning for the first time.
And this is why I enjoy perusing a neighborhood garage sale!
At the home of another former student's grandparents, the whole family was chipping in. It was great to see my former student, to get a great big hug, and to chat about our mutual love of books. Apparently that's not all this family and I have in common. A quick glance around the displays, and I knew I'd leave with more than a few finds to fill my bike basket.
The first thing that grabbed my attention was the small collection of silver-plated serving ware. I purchased this coffee pot, sugar bowl, and creamer set...
and this wonderful two-tiered tray.
Along with the typical garage sale items, there were some wonderful antiques and collectibles.
I purchased a small Texas flag and some vintage leather gloves with tiny pearl buttons.
I was not surprised to find out that this homeowner sells antiques and collectibles at many of the area antique fairs. We chatted at length about our shared love of antiques and all things vintage.
The old red wagon bearing potted plants that I've seen on her porch (and secretly covet) should have tipped me off years ago that this neighbor was indeed a kindred spirit.
While I was mulling about, I heard the distinct strum of a guitar. I turned just as the homeowner was setting it down. "Is that for sale?" I asked. When he said that it was, I responded, "I'll take it!" With three guitarists in the family I had little doubt this Ibanez acoustic guitar would get used often and loved much.
I headed back home with my bike basket loaded and my heart full.
This morning's outing providing me with so much more than a few shiny trinkets. I reconnected with old friends, met a few new friends, and gained a deeper understanding of the people in my neighborhood and community.
Post Script: My son came over for lunch later in the afternoon. Inside of a minute the guitar was in hand and making some sweet music!
A special "Thank You" to Bobbie Ruiz for organizing the Neighborhood Garage Sale and helping to build our neighborhood community! Also, she has wonderful grandchildren!
BOBBIE K. RUIZ
Real Estate Consultant
KELLER WILLIAMS REALTY
All photographs taken by Paulette Rodriguez.