Monday, 25 February 2013

Heat Wave !!!

I'm finding it VERY hard to get any work done during this heatwave.   After more than a week of 30+ Celsius temperature, I am grumpier than the Grumpy Cat.   I hate you summer - go away!

No sleep, water from the cold tap comes out boiling, and I have absolutely NO will to do any work.

I have no cooling in my flat.   In December, I bought some black fabric from the local op shop, and hung it over my living room and kitchen windows.   These two rooms now look like a Goth wonderland, but it keeps the blasted sun out.   Maybe one day in another destiny, I will be able to afford outside blinds.

Because I'm not getting much new stuff listed, I'm forcing myself to update my ebay items with adding lots of item specifics.    Great information on this on Tina's blog here.      This allows me to feel like I'm getting work done without having to move around too much!   I'm going through my videos at the moment  (not even a quarter of the way through yet!), and it's also allowing me to find videos that have slipped through the "sell similar" cycle, and are just sitting there languishing on my shelf taking whatever substances videos take to get themselves high.  I cleaned up their act pretty quick smart.

Only 920 items in my shop to update with the specifics, but I think it's already having an effect on my sales.

If I could pull my finger out and blog more often, I wouldn't have to try to fit so much in each one!!!

Some of my purchases from my last blog have sold.

These blank videos:

Cost :  about $2
Sold:  $23

The Betty Neels books:

Cost:  $2
Sold:  $30

I still haven't put up the Pyrex, mug, doll or bowl.  :-(

Did I mention this calculator I had bought about 6 months ago.   I dug it up last week in and looked up the prices again.  They hadn't looked so good when I first got it, but now it is the beginning of the new school year.  The high school students were now looking for them, and it has pushed the price up.  Sometimes it's just all about the timing.

So I listed it at a cheeky price near the upper end of the selling scale, and it sold a week later.  Now I'm looking everywhere for calculators, but I will never find another one.

I had also decided to stop selling the children's clothing bulk lots because they weren't moving.   I used to sell them in lots of the same size, but to get rid of them, I mixed the lots across 2 sizes and lowered the price a little.  Suddenly they started flying out of the store.   The last couple of weeks the money from these sales helped a lot, and having that few larger amounts put into my Paypal account *really* helped to lift my spirits.  

So yes - now I'm selling them again - but now I'm merging sizes, and dropping the price a little.    They still make a nice profit for me.   I'm keeping away from baby clothes, and sticking to the Size 2 and up.  ( But the baby clothes are SOOO cute!!!)     Lessons learned.

I go to two libraries a week - my local one and the one near my parents.   I love my libraries, and I don't know what I'd do without them.  I need my books to read!  I need to avoid reality as much as possible.

 Last week my local library had some good books on their For Sale table.  My eyes fell on lots of V C Andrews, and I swooped them up along with a lot of Buffy and Friends Forever books.  It was "fill a bag for $5" - so I got over 30 books.

The V C Andrews were two entire series.  I know these are good sellers, so I put them up ASAP, and they both sold quickly.   Still haven't put up the other books yet.   *guilty face*

It's funny, when I had my bookshop I would hate the sight of V C Andrew books.  I couldn't even sell them for $2 each.  If only I'd know then that I could have been selling them as sets on eBay for a good price!

Phew, it's 30 degrees now.  The forecast is for "storms" this afternoon.  What that means is lightning and thunder (no rain) which will do nothing but create more horrible grass fires, and cause the humidity to rise.

Waiting for a change.

Until then - like the wicked witch of the west - "I'm melting!"

Sunday, 10 February 2013

Buys for This Week

I'm still trying to get out of my comfort-zone of books, videos & board games.
Still struggling with that - but managed to pick up up a couple of items I know nothing about, so I'm getting there!

I went to my local St Vinnies, and checked out their hideously over-priced books.  Then I spotted these 4 lots of books - in bundles of 5, all done up with a ribbon for $1 a bundle!  (Apologies for the blurred photo!)

I instantly spotted the name Betty Neels, and grabbed them.   Betty Neels is the most collectable Mills & Boon author.   She was a prolific writer - in most of her books, the male love interest was a Dutch doctor with an amusingly unpronounceable name.     Good on her!

I remember squillions of years ago when I had my bookshop, a lady came in specifically looking for Betty Neels and *only* Betty Neels.   Although there were numerous collectors that visited my shop, this lady told me that she only bought Betty Neels because there was no sexual content in the books, and these were the only romance books that were approved by her religion (not sure what faith she was of.)

I remembered it all this time.  A few years ago, I picked up a few vintage Mills & Boons of the 60's era - with gorgeous retro covers.   Much like these:

I decided to read one.  The story sounded sweet and  there was no man on the front cover looking like a skinned animal, and with no visible body hair (like the modern ones).  There would be no playing hide-the-sausage at all, let alone before Chapter 2.

The book started off predictable for that era.  She was 18 years old, and an air-head.  He was her boss, early 30s with the personality of a mushroom.    They got married and the inevitable spot of how's-your-father never occurred.      But get this - the best friend of the groom told her after a month of marriage that he *could tell by looking at her, that she hadn't done her wifely duty*.    So she let hubby get the leg-over and all was happy & bluebirds were singing.

I nearly gagged.   I'll never fall for those sweet front covers again!     Romance shmo-mance.  

 Back to the books - there were others in the bundles that weren't Mills & Boons - I peeked into the be-ribboned bundles and saw these were amongst them.

I know by trolling other book-sellers that Iris Bromige is a rare author, that people are on the look-out, so I snapped up all of them.   I put the 3 x Iris Bromige up for $7 each and this lot of Betty Neels for $29.99.

I love any of these Nightmare/Atmosfear games as you know.   I picked this up at a local church op-shop that only opens on Monday mornings.    It was $5.  The tight-wad in me nearly swallowed my tongue, but I knew I could get at least $25, so I reluctantly pulled the last amount of money out of my purse, releasing a flurry of hungry moths.

When I got home, I opened the box, and found all the pieces were still in original shrink-wrap.  Hurrah!
I put it up for $35 - and it sold a couple of days later.

This pyrex dish was $2.50.  It has no chips or marks.  People are always raving about Pyrex, so I picked it up.   It's pink with white flowers.  I guess if I can't sell it, I can keep it for myself.  I know absolutely *nothing* about Pyrex!

There is a Salvos that I recently discovered that sells their videos 5 for $1.  I go on a Tuesday morning, flash my low-income card and get 20% off - so that's 5 for 80 cents.  Woohoo, I am the last of the big spenders!

I was excited to find 5 blank video cassettes still sealed.

I added 3 others that I had at home, and put them up for $23.   

A Far Side mug that I got for 50 cents.  Haven't tried selling a mug before.   Yikes!

A friend wants me to sell this for her.   It is an Arabia Finland plate.  New ground here.

She also wants me to sell this Punky Brewster doll.  No comfort zone here.

This video re-winder is for me and my eBay business.  I often put videos in my VCR to test - press rewind and then I get distracted by something shiny.  My TV turns itself off in disgust at being ignored, and I have to turn everything on again.   Rinse & repeat.    So this item is fantastic!

I bought it on my Saturday morning op shop before I have lunch at my parents.   I plugged it in at their place and asked if they had some videos I could test on it.   My Mum found a couple and it seemed to struggle rewinding them.     I was disappointed, but at $3, it was worth the chance.

When I got it home, I sprayed WD-40 on the cogs, and now it's working perfectly!  Hurrah.  It makes testing of my videos so much easier when they are already rewound.  It's only one step taken out of the process, but it makes a big difference.

What is interesting is the video that my Mum had handed me to test.  It was a recorded video - when I looked at the title it said "Karina & Jonathan's Wedding."   I know it is a very amateur video that my cousin's wife took on her video camera on the day.  We had no professional videographer back then!

It was a poignant moment for me, because the other week I had been thinking of the videos I donated when I moved house three years ago.  I was thinking how much I could sell them for now - and then my mind slid sideways to the wedding video.   Mine was inexplicably damaged three years ago when I accidentally dropped it to the concrete, stomped on it ten times, and threw the pathetic remains in the rubbish bin.

I might just get the video off my parents and look at the me of 20 years ago.  Did I look happy?    Was I excited at what lay ahead?   Was I ever that young and innocent?    It would be nice to see the people there who have now passed away, those I'd like to see again - and those I hope never to see again.   I won't be looking at it until my 3 months of no-alcohol is over - there is still 7 weeks to go.

Oh and more importantly, did my wedding dress really look like a toilet roll cover?    Bwahahhaa!

Ah, memories ....

Monday, 4 February 2013

I've got a free ticket to ride !!!!

Ebay - Feebay  - this week I have given it another name - FreeBay.

It started last Thursday.    I was doing a "sell similar" on some products that had ended.

At the end of it all, a screen came up with the price crossed out and the total cost of $0.00 shown.

I shook it off as just a silly quirk of eBay.  I relisted 30 items as 'Sell Similar' and got the same message for all.    Just for a hoot, I looked at my eBay account, and it showed no listing fees for that day at all.

I was intrigued.  On my 12 years on eBay, I have NEVER HAD ONE SINGLE FREE LISTING.  I read on eBay Underground about people getting offers of free listings, so I assumed I had come up in the lottery for that day.

It was like my pants were on fire.  I was determined to list my items that cost a lot more per listing (ie. games, clothing, toys) at 20 cents a pop, rather than my usual media items (videos, books, magazines) at 5 cents a pop.  I went crazy.

Just to mention, I was very depressed that morning, because my sales had been so terrible.  We're talking $100 a week.  Not even enough to buy my food.   I was in tears.

This pulled me out of my blue funk and got me working hard for the rest of the day.   I listed another 20 new items, and listed some 10 others clothing and games that I'd been putting off.

That night the items were still coming up free, so I ended 30 items that were finishing the next day, and relisted them - just for a hoot!   I was squeezing that free listings day until it had no air left in it!!   I *throttled* it to death!

The next morning, my sell similar's came up free again.  I couldn't believe it - I spent another day slogging through listings.  When I ran out of puff, I ended the items finishing the next day and re-listed them for free.  I was on a roll.

Then it happened the next day, and the next, and the next.  It is now Monday.    I did a 'sell similar' on 10 items, and got charged for them.  My luck had run out !!!!

Oh well, it was fun whilst it lasted!!!   I'm still waiting for a huge fee to suddenly get dumped onto my account.  For the moment it is showing this new information in my Account Page:

I mean - wow!  It almost makes up for the horrifying $20 hike in my eBay store fees.   Almost.  Well kinda.  Well - no, not really.

I had a terrible run of 3 weeks with half the amount of sales than usual.    Then it was like the lights came on.  I had 4 sales within an hour at 10pm which is unheard of.  Then some more sales the next morning - and then it slowed to a trickle again.  

Sales This Week Worth Mentioning:

This was my only auction this week.  I was selling it on behalf of a friend, where we go halvies.   Car memorabilia is VERY collectable.   I watched the end of the auction, so I got my ONLY thrill in a long time.   (note:  don't have enough money to buy new batteries  *wink*)

I don't know what my friend paid for this.  Probably not much.

A basketball fan bought both this game & video:

Video: costed 20 cents
Game :  costed $2 ??

This Target ladies suit, I've had in my closet to sell for over a year.  What put me off, was the jacket and skirt were different sizes.    Free listing made me rethink it and realise, that we can be a different sizes top and bottom.  I made it clear in the listing.  This sold the next day.  

Total cost:  no more than 50 cents

Hurrah! Another pull-my-finger-out-of-my-bum free listing.  This will help pay for my food this week!

Total cost : about $7

Even though the free ride has ended, I'm inspired to clear the clothes in my wardrobe, if only to get the wardrobe space back!

Picked up some interesting items at the op shops this week.  Hopefully I will blog about them tomorrow.