Tuesday, June 19, 2012

So I'll find what lies beneath

My right arm is about ready to fall off, and I'll even tell you why:

Today Abby and I went to help set up at the church's annual rummage sale.  This is a huge deal for the parish put on by the Altar Society.  It's their major fundraiser.  It's also our major outlet for anything we want to get rid of because having a garage sale is highly overrated.  I haven't really helped set up in the past, though, because... I don't know.  Being overwhelmed mothering young children?  Getting a new job and needing to figure out how to work everything in?  Sheer laziness?  But now that I'm almost 40 and ever so wise and mature, I figured my time had come.  And Abby's too just by default.  Well, except she HAS helped in the past.  That's how far my lameness reaches.

My public (hi, Mom!), my sister-in-law and my favorite mother-in-law were also helping today, so it was a family affair.  We found my mother in the kids room and figured we may as well help her out, since she was by herself.  Plus, who am I kidding?  Of course I'm going to gravitate towards my mother.  I don't care if I am almost 40.  I just want my mom.

The kids room was also the room people blindly chucked stuff into, apparently, because the place was thrashed.  We went through some bags (why do you donate underwear, people?  I don't care how new it looks, I don't want to touch it) and separated the kids from the adults and the miscellaneous.  That's where Abby came in.  She did a lot of running.

Also: People apparently mistake "rummage" for "dirty shit nobody wants."  Just throw that stuff out, okay?  Jeez.

Anyway, so Mom and Abby and I got the joint looking pretty nice in a couple of hours.  We had a rack for girls and a rack for boys, tables of toys and books and puzzles, a bunch of hats, a table dedicated to pants and shorts (we didn't segregate because we felt everyone should just get along), and a table of baby stuff.  Donations were down, but the majority of it looked decent, so that's a plus.

Anyway, one of the perks of helping out is that you see what's there before anyone else does.  This is actually encouraged.  I had hoped to find Johanna some pants and shirts, but there was literally nothing in her size.


One of the volunteers came in with this box of canning jars, the cool kind with the flip top and the seal, and I was all, I want those.  There was another volunteer, an older lady, who was all, can I have some? And I was all, oh, sure, go for it because how do you say no to an old lady?  Plus she could have totally taken me.  She took three.  I was like, you can have more than that, but she was all, three is good.  And I was like, SOLD.  I was told they were a buck each.  So that's how I spent $17 on really awesome canning jars.

Wait, check this out:

So yeah, they've got some stickers on them.  Well, that's why
God gave us Mr. Clean Magic Erasers.  Probably.

THEN.  I found these two Pyrex casserole dish things that are uglier than sin, but have glass (glass-ish?  What the heck IS Pyrex anyway?) lids.  And that is how I spent another $5.

Artfully stacked.

Why divide a casserole?

Oh, and I found what amounted to a quart of only red Lego pieces for Johanna.  Mom thought maybe a quarter since that's what the toys usually go for, but I'm going for a nice even $1.

So anyway, after dinner I set about trying to clean up my new finds.  The larger casserole dish had black flecks all over it, like dried gross food residue or something, but with a LOT of elbow grease and my Mr. Clean Magic Eraser, that sucker was good as new.  They're out of the dishwasher now looking totally awesome, as you can clearly see in the photos above.

Then I set about getting the stickers off my new canning jars.  And discovered I had just bought 17 Le Parfait jars.  Holy crap.  And here I just thought they were cute.

The stickers have proved more of a challenge.  I got out a steel wool pad and my magic eraser and even my Pampered Chef pan scraper, but I couldn't get all of the sticker off.  So then I went online and learned that these things are dishwasher safe, hallelujah.  Except a run through the dishwasher didn't get all the sticky off either.  That took more scrubbing with the steel wool.  So for I've got exactly one looking like new.  This might take awhile.  My right arm muscle is going to be HUGE.

And what will I do with 17 awesome jars, you ask?  Use them to store stuff in, use them as leftover containers, give them away as Harvest Fest presents, give them away for Christmas.  Except now that I know they're Le Parfait I might give away the crappy Chinese jars I got from IKEA this winter instead.

Is that bad?

P.S. Johanna spent the morning with my Dad, just in case anyone is worried.  She got to watch cable television.  She was thrilled.

Breaking Benjamin, What Lies Beneath.  As in, what lies behind that sticker?  What?  A Le Parfait jar?  I'm sure that's just what Ben was thinking when he penned this song.

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