Aug 29, 2013

Loving the preloved market

A few months ago, I was in need of a baby swing for Number 3. I found one on Gumtree listed for $60 (other listings were in the region of $80 to $100) in a suburb about half an hour's drive away. I offered $50, the seller accepted and I got my rocker for a quarter of the price of a new one.

She loved it for all of 3 months - she would like staring up at herself in the mirror and would fall asleep like a charm once the swing got into action. But lately, she has discovered the world is a lot bigger and there are more interesting things to roll to and chew on. So I regretfully listed it for sale on a Facebook group. I sold it within 5 minutes for $50.

In Malaysia, you wouldn't dream of walking up to a stranger's door, knocking on it, exchanging quick pleasantries and money and goods. But people here do it all the time and I've been a convert. I've bought a nursing top, storage boxes, toys, and an activity center. I've sold unwanted nappies, maternity tops, a jacket, a spiderman outfit that Number 2 outgrew after wearing twice and cotsheets that I got as a baby shower gift that I couldn't use.

We've also figuratively 'dumpster dived'. An IKEA black shelf in the garage was rescued from the thrash room at our old apartment. When we first arrived, we drove past this house in Manly which had stools and chairs outside by the road. We were unfamiliar with Council Day then, but the homeowner had put out a sign that said, "FREE! Take before council does." We stopped, said to ourselves "really?, picked out two wooden barstools and put them in our boot, and drove off in a bit of confusion over the whole affair but the proud owner of two stools. Our furniture had yet to arrive then, and we were renting an empty apartment, so the stools came in handy for the kids to sit on and have dinner on the kitchen countertop. We still have them to this day!

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