Sell baby gear in bulk?
photo by ingamun
DEAR SARA: I cleaned out my basement and have a lot of baby gear to sell. I want to sell this stuff quickly, so I will price it pretty low, but I’d still like to get about $100. Should I list the items together as a large “lot” or separately? — Diana M. via e-mail
DEAR DIANA: Listing them together might cause some people to pass on your stuff because they don’t need or want it all. “Lots” work best for items like clothing and books. With that said, you could word your ad like this: “Baby gear for sale. Buy separately or together.” Then give a slight discount, as an incentive, if they buy all of it.
DEAR SARA: I’ve heard people use slivers of soap by sticking the last bit to a new bar. It’s too much work for me to melt and make “new” bars. Any other tips to use up the soap slivers? — Carrie, e-mail
DEAR CARRIE: You can fold a washcloth in half and sew up the sides to form a pocket, then place your slivers into it. Some people use pantyhose or a sock to hold the slivers. You can also place the slivers into a leftover liquid-soap pump dispenser. Add two marbles and fill with water. Shake before using.
DEAR SARA: I work as a landscaper, and my boots are often wet. I have tried to dry them over a heat register, and this works sometimes, but they’re starting to smell. Any suggestions? — Bill, Illinois
DEAR BILL: I’ll probably get 30 lashes with a wet ramen noodle for suggesting this. Have you tried a boot dryer? It’s a machine that dries boots. While it’s not as cheap as using your heat register, you’ll find it does a great job of drying throughout the year, it’s quiet when it’s on and it doesn’t warp the shape of your boots. It’s one of those items you’ll be happy you bought if you work outside, hunt, fish, ski, have kids that play outside or play sports where your shoes get sweaty. There are models that dry hats and gloves, too. I don’t usually recommend buying an item if there is a low-cost solution, but I have discovered this product to be a good investment that solves the problem of wet boots. Hair dryers overheat, laundry dryers can sometimes cause damage and air-drying often isn’t fast enough.
DEAR SARA: Any quick and frugal suggestions for spoon rests? — Carla, e-mail
DEAR CARLA: You can reuse a lid from jars such as peanut butter or mayonnaise.
DEAR SARA: I’m looking for a fun activity for a small group of 5-year-olds to do that isn’t messy or time-consuming. I want this activity for a spring school party. — Tina C., New York
DEAR TINA C.: How about making edible necklaces? You can use shoelace licorice, marshmallows or Peeps, cereal with holes in it, pretzels, dried fruit and gummie candies. Use plastic needles to poke holes into the dried fruit.
DEAR SARA: My mother-in-law is coming for a visit. She’s older and can’t do a lot of running around. My husband can’t take vacation time that covers her entire visit so that leaves me alone with her part of the time. I want to make this time enjoyable for her, but I don’t have a lot of money to spend. Help me with ideas, please. — Helena, via e-mail
DEAR HELENA: You could rent a movie or scrapbook together. If she has a skill such as cooking, baking, crocheting or quilting that you’ve always wanted to learn, ask her to teach you. You could sip tea, talk and do a jigsaw puzzle together, or go on a trip to the salon. I enjoyed doing plastic canvas with my grandmother, working together on writing a memoir journal, gardening, making a silk floral arrangement, taking pictures and going to garage sales. Ask her whether there’s anything special she’d really like to do. Let her know you have a few surprises but want her input, too.