Lynn’s eBay eZine Feb 17th, 2016 Volume XII, Issue 01


I can NOT believe that it is February 18th and this is my first ezine of the year. Pathetic is all I can say! I will explain later and then I think you will all understand.

But first, I have to say that I really, really, miss writing and sending out these ezines. I get to connect with so many of you because of similar experiences and similar sales and I have missed that.

But before we get into the ezine, let’s start it off with a score! I bought this Picasso Print from the same estate sale where I bought those Pisquah coffee mugs that sold for over $900. I should have bought everything in the house.

It was the sale where the two men holding it had gone to my high school, Sehome, in Bellingham Washington and they had me sing the alma mater to get in early. If you have ever heard me sing, I wouldn’t recommend asking me to sing anytime soon . I paid $100 for this and apparently I was singing for my dinner…..a lot of dinners!

Click here to see this auction.

In addition to missing you all, I have always told my kids that they don’t “really” have baby books per se, but they have something much better. An online history of what they were doing for almost every week/month of their lives. You can’t lose that when you move ..

OK, that brings me to the reason that there have been no ezines since my last one on 12/24/15. If you missed it here is a link.

On December 26th, yes, just two days after my most recent ezine and the morning after Christmas, I got an email from my landlord. We had been living there for 5 years…. by the way.

“Hate to be the bearer of bad news but our escrow in Santa Barbara has fallen out and as a result we need to sell the house. Call me or email but by law I have to give you 60 days notice to vacate. You may not have to move so long as we all come to some kind of mutual agreement that works for your family and ourselves. Sorry to burden you with this during the Holidays but we just received word that our deal had fallen through. The earliest that you have to move is Feb. 29 2016. You’ve been a wonderful tenant and I hate to lose you. Best wishes-“

Ughhhhhh. The worst time ever to look for a new place in the dessert, high season. I was hoping to live in our place until Indiana graduates high school in May of 2017 and then I am moving back over to the coast. I miss the ocean!

Well, I do love a challenge  and I knew we had to skedaddle. OK, of course now I am going to have to figure out where that wonderful word “skedaddle” originated. Apparently, it appeared around the time of the Civil War and was often associated with troops retreating. Experts think that “skedaddle” is rooted in the Irish word “sgedadol” meaning “scattered,” or the Scots word “skiddle,” meaning “to spill or scatter.” Interesting!

Indy and I did not want to be living in a house that was for sale. Even though there was no real estate inventory available, after an exhaustive search, we did find a darling home in our same community and it was right up the street. The view is even better! We made plans to begin moving in on January 15th. We don’t waste any time! 

Check it out here.

Goose even foundtwo trees he can hang his hammock from in the front yard when (and if) he ever comes home to visit.

Here I am with Indy, her friend Claudia, the Goose, Mo, my mom, my friend Kelly and her mom Nina, after we had made our decision. Indy’s friend Claudia was with us because the night before had been Indiana’s official birthday party at our home. It was a pizza and smores party out on our deck. Interestingly enough, all the kids wound up in the garage for dancing and “Simon Says” lead by Houston. Why, oh why, did I bother cleaning the house?

Here they are in our garage (well our old garage)….our new garage is much more organized .

The birthday girl is in the center wearing a head lamp. This year for Christmas I got everyone in my family a head lamp. My grandmother used to do the same thing….every year she would find a gift that would benefit each and every one of us and purchase it for each of us….one year an electric skillet, the next year a juicer, etc.

The head lampis an awesome gift and helps with household chores when dark and is amazing to use when locating hard to find items on those dark shelves in your eBay storage area. Check them out!

O.K. time for a Christmas score or you may call this a New Year’s Day score. In any event, it sure helped to pay for my huge moving bill. Even moving down the street costs a fortune when you have as much STUFF as I do.

Click here to see this auction.

Bought for $20.00 and sold for a best offer of quite a bit less than half but not a bad ROI!

Luckily, my mom was in town until January 12th and could help us start packing. She helped me sort my clothes closet and decide what to keep, what to sell and what to donate.

Check out all of these bags of clothing to donate. Felt amazing to say “Ba Bye” as my sister Kiki would have said.

Before I forget, we did manage to get 7 of the 9 bracelets that Kiki had made for us on the beach in Mexico during our “goodbye” Disney cruise in December of 2011. The 9 bracelets were Papa, Mor Mor, Uncle Lee, Lynnie, Goose (she and I debated whether he would want Goosie—his real nickname or the more grown up Goose, I think we made the right decision), Indy, Kiki, Kai and Zach. We are still missing Zach and Kai’s and hope to get all 9 together soon.

But I digress and I am glad I did. I love remembering my sister  and writing about her every chance I can. But back to the move. My mom even wrote up all of the clothing out of the closet that I would be listing on eBay. Some is listed and most is not, but check out this leather jacket that was hers back in the 1970’s. It is seriously hip and now for sale on eBay. It is screaming “buy me”.

Click here to see this auction.

With all of this moving preparation going on it was time to take a break. My brother had given everyone tickets to the park and an overnight stay at Disneyland for a Christmas gift. We would be going on January 4th and 5th. Well, I would only be going for one day (and would drive separately) because I had too much work to do.

Let’s see, pack a house, finish a Coffee Mug eBook, sell on eBay, manage the Queen’s Court, possibly write an ezine and ship everything that had sold. Suffice it to say, I was overwhelmed, but did not want to miss this family event.

Unfortunately, as Indy and I were driving her new/used Audi to a doctor’s appointment, we went over a tiny little curb. No big deal in my SUV but in a low profile convertible….major damage. Cracked the transmission.

Had to have it towed home and when Indy and I got dropped off at our gated community in a huge flat bed tow truck, one of our favorite front gate guards, Sam, just looked at us and said “Couldn’t you find a better way home?” Didn’t have a car for two weeks and it cost over $1,000. When it rains, it pours.

But let’s look on the bright side. I got to stay home and continue working (I didn’t think I should take the time off anyway) and my mom, Lee and the kids had a great time at Disneyland. Little did I know, nor realize, that it was a huge milestone birthday for my brother. I will let you guess how old he turned that January 4th but it was a number that ended in a zero.

Here is the picture I posted on Instagram “Happy Birthday to the Best Brother EVER!” It was a photo of my brother when he took the kids on a Disney cruise years ago.

Speaking of the best brother ever, in the midst of moving I had a revelation. My brother had been starting to sell some of the larger pieces of furniture that he had gotten from our grandmother and I was very impressed with how awesome his house was transforming into more him (mod and hip) and less heirloom. I decided I was not going to continue to keep all of the antiques that I got from my grandmother that had sentimental value or that I would use to decorate with someday…..

I decided to let go of things that I thought I would never sell and this became our Queen’s Court challenge for February….Let go of the past. One of our QC members, Pam Clayton, had a great suggestion. Take a picture of everything that has sentimental value and make a photo album. Then sell the actual item on eBay. A lot less baggage to carry around with you .

One of those items was an antique carriage/buggy that I used to push my brother in up and down the street in front of my grandmother’s antiques store. People would stop us and say what an adorable baby girl and Cheryl Leaf folklore has it that I would say “Him’s a boy”. By the way, I look more like a boy in this photo with my weird pixie hair cut than my brother does. Thanks mom or dad for that hair cut!

How could I part with that darling buggy? Easy! I found the photo of me with him in the buggy, put that in a safe place and listed the carriage on eBay.

Here is my reasoning. I can list every single thing in my house at a high price and it doesn’t mean that it will sell. But, if the right offer comes along, it is gone.

Click here to see this auction.

Here is another one of those items that I thought I would never sell but found it in the back of my bathroom cupboard. Seriously? Time to let someone else enjoy it.

Click here to see this auction.

My mom left town around January 12th and I was lucky to be able to have her help me with shipping, writing up items, and packing before she left. She was here for the after Christmas shipping rush. And thank goodness there was a rush!

What was crazy to both of us and really freaked us out was that we were both selling a ton of Nikko Christmas dinnerware. It is not an expensive pattern and not usually a good seller, but for some reason this year it flew off of my shelves.

Check out my shipping table for a Monday right after Christmas. A ton of Nikko Christmas.

Here is a link to just one of the many listings I sold in this pattern.

Click here to see this auction.

These dinner plates sold the day after Christmas and I said to my mom, “some Christmas dinner guests must be feeling pretty guilty for all of the dishes they broke at their host’s houses because we have about ten orders for this pattern to ship”. Hahaha….but probably exactly what happened or they wanted to make sure they had enough place settings for next year’s dinner.

Even with all of the work we were doing, my mom and I also got to have some fun and fun for us means thrifting or garage saling. My friend Lori called us one morning and said, “did you know all the resort wear at Revivals is 60% off today?” No, we did NOT. Immediate Uturn and we ended up at the same Revivals as Lori. Here is my mom at check out with her bags on the counter and Lori in her baseball cap. What a great friend!

Here is one of my listings from that day of purchasing brand new resort wear at 60% off.

Click here to see this auction.

But back to the looming move of the century. I also made a vow that I would NOT move all my accumulation of paperwork (from the past 4 moves) and junk drawers. Seriously, I had 5-6 boxes in our garage marked “junk drawer” from the last four houses….hahahaha…I am sure many of you can relate.

I started going through boxes of paperwork that were in our garage immediately. I think I must have recycled an entire dumpster by the time I was through. It was such a liberating feeling.

Here is my garage work in progress. Seriously, I had my work cut out for me.

The best part of sorting through so many photos and paperwork was that I got to see adorable pictures of my kiddos. I made photo boxes and memory boxes for them. Here are two of my favorite pics.

This one I posted on Instagram (about the only place I check and respond so follow me at lynndralle) and here is what my post looks like.

Then Indy and I made a moving plan. We would hire my favorite movers and attempt to move ½ the house on January 15th and the other ½ on the 22nd. It was a huge undertaking. Goose was back at Pepperdine, Indy was overextended at school, my mom had just left and my dad wouldn’t be arriving in town for a visit until February 1st. What impeccable timing Papa…couldn’t have planned it better if you knew about the move .

In addition, all of my friends were busy at their real jobs. It is high season out here and I was left on my own. Thank God my friend Lori showed up on a few clutch occasions and I had Max to help me get the old house in ship shape.

Here are the movers with a full truck and two of my couches on the back lift gate. Luckily, we were only going a few blocks.

Here is what our living room looked like after that first day’s move. We had to move in the outdoor furniture to have a place to sit…although I must admit we didn’t do much sitting .

In the midst of all of this, I did manage to finish collecting my Albertson’s Grocery Store stamps to be able to acquire a set of flatware for free (just like my grandmother used to do to get free sets of Oneida Betty Crocker stainless). Yay! I did my research and chose the French Rooster Cuisinart Stainless set. I haven’t sold any yet but I know I will.

Here is my finished sheet with all of the stamps.

Here is one of my listings.

Click here to see this auction.

By the way, I won’t be doing this experiment again anytime soon. Way too much time wasted for a $25 set of free flatware….but it was fun. I still can’t figure out how my grandmother had so much extra time on her hands to do it all. Maybe times were different back in the 1950’s, 1960’s etc. I think this may be true especially considering how much time we all WASTE on the internet and social media.

There is some time that I don’t consider wasted and that is the time I spend watching my kids participate in sports. Basketball has been so much fun with Indy. Here is a shot of her making a perfect free throw. Her JV team still has not won a game but who cares. It is a blast to watch and cheer for those Xavier Saints.

Time for a score. Speaking of the 1950’s and 1960’s, here is a real mid-century modern bar set that I sold for a best offer in the past few days. I think it went for around $100. With the move it has all been a whirlwind .

Click here to see this auction.

Let’s wrap up our huge move and get back to eBay. The second big move day came on January 22nd. My awesome friend Max not only painted and fixed up the old house for me (I paid him of course but we did get my entire damage deposit back…pretty good after 5 years and two teenagers later) but he also helped us hang up paintings, shelves and draperies at the new place. I LOVE him. Here he is with Indy on Move day #2.

Indy and I had been hitting garage sales when we had free time (haha) looking for new things to decorate the new house. We had to have some fun now…didn’t we?

When Indy and I were out looking for a couch for her new room at one sale I found a Lilliput village priced at $10….I don’t think I have ever found one! (QC member Diva Dawn’s expertise) But Indy found 3 black bar stools in the garage that she thought would be perfect for our new kitchen.

Our new kitchen has a bar that is as low as the counters and I doubted that they would fit. But Indy stuck to her guns. She just knew that they were perfect. They were priced at $20 each. I wasn’t sure but finally the gal, Heather, told me that if I bought the three stools she would throw the Lilliput village in for free. Sold.

Diva helped me list it and here it is.

Click here to see this auction.

Here is a photo of the new kitchen with the three black bar stools that my daughter was so smart to purchase. She is brilliant.

I was also able to empty out my old garage and you should all be very proud of this accomplishment that was made with the help of my friends and family. Moving every few years is good for the soul!

What is not good for the soul is the USPS rate charges that went into effect on January 17, 2016. This time the domestic and international rates were raised significantly. I would encourage you all to purchase the one sided downloadable USPS international rate chart here or the actual laminated chart that has the new higher domestic prices on the back here.

Now that the move is finished…. at least on paper, I think we need to feature one of our awesome Queen’s Court members, Coco.

Here is her story…..

“When AOL first came out in the 90’s I signed up. My husband asked me “why do you need that?” My reply was “I don’t know yet, but I just do”. Stayed up all night the first time I got on the internet. I was fascinated. Back in that time you had to write the HTML code to make web pages on the internet look interesting. Thus I taught myself how to write the code. Back then items on eBay were even listed without pictures, imagine that!

I got started on ebay in 1999. I had closed an interior design business I had been in for 20 years and had leftover inventory. Mostly sports items since our specialty was sports bars. I always loved going to garage sales, and even after starting to sell things on eBay it had not clicked yet to buy things at garage sales and flip them on eBay.

Then one weekend I bought an old 3 spindle malt mixing machine. The kind one used to see in diners. I paid $25 for it thinking I would put it in the kitchen. It was too tall to fit under the counter, so I decided to sell it on ebay. $550 later I was starting to think this might be a pretty good idea.

Here is an eBay listing for a similar mixing machine.

Click here to see this auction.

Then a few weeks later I bought 2 French horns in cases for $5.00 each (REALLY who sells stuff that cheap? ). I had no idea what the instrument was called at that time I just knew it looked like it was worth more than $5.00.

I cleaned them up and had them checked to make sure they worked. One went for about $350 and the other for over $400 and it shipped to Australia. Then weeks later we bought a French Horn at a swap meet for $150 and it sold for $1200. I decided that garage sale shopping really did work, plus it was FUN. My former business partner used to say, what we did best was “shop”.

Here is a picture of me and my former business partner on a buying trip in Hawaii.

Shortly after I started selling on eBay, the big thing was those eBay consignment shops and trading assistants. I could never figure out how those consignment shops made enough money to make it work. I tried the trading assistant thing for a while, and what I found was that most people thought the stuff was worth a fortune and worth way more than it was going to sell for on eBay.

One bonus was when I was asked to run auctions for the Stephen Stills music charity. Sold a lot of his old Hawaiian shirts. That was fun. No guitars though, he told me he was waiting to sell them until the day no one wanted to listen to his music.

Today I no longer sell for others, only for my sister and a few select friends.

Shortly after I moved from Orange County to the desert in 2007, I decided to separate my eBay things and concentrate on what I know best, sporting goods. Thus I created two eBay sites. My secondary site or “the little site” offhwy111 as I call it I use only for odd ball stuff, mostly things I see lying around the house or for my sister. My main site recycled-sporting-goods is only used for listing sports related items. Here is a picture of me with the Anaheim Ducks “Wild Wing” and one of the autographed posters I sold on eBay years ago.

It was around 2008-09 when I first met Lynn. I would see pictures of her Grandma in her ezines and she reminded me so much of my Grandma. Here is a picture of my Grandma in the rocking chair I still have today, it has been re-upholstered multiple times.

Fast forward to 2015, I still have fun on eBay (there is that lunatic buyer every so often) but today I have learned to laugh and ignore, for the most part as, “that person must be having a really bad day”.

These days my sister goes garage sale shopping with me on Saturdays, which makes it the most fun. We usually start out the morning by asking, “what is it we want to find today?” Most often we end up finding that thing we are looking for, often times in multiples.

Here I am with my sister Robin.

Every other week my nephew will text and ask, “can you please find me a surfboard?” We did once and once was enough, got the wrong size, and surfboards are not easy to sell on eBay (shipping is a problem).

Two days before New Year’s this year I tripped over the camera cord attached to the computer and fell HARD while trying to avoid falling on my puppy, Stanley. Good thing he’s cute!

Broke my hip! Of course one of my first concerns on the way to the hospital was eBay. I had stuff scheduled to go on at auction and knew there was no way my husband would be able to deal with it all. So, I called the only person I trusted who could temporarily shut it down for me, Lynn!

— (Lynn here, I didn’t even see the call from Coco because it was the same night at Indy’s 17th birthday party….when I called her back I couldn’t believe it….uggghhhh…Coco is amazing and the way she dealt with her time off will inspire you all. Now, back to Coco’s story.)

Then the newscame, that after surgery I could not walk on my right leg for at least 6-12 weeks. That was actually better than when I googled broken hip and it said it could take up to a year to recover.

Never Google stuff like that when you are sick, YIKES. I am not one to lie in bed, heck I never even take naps. After about two days of lying down and watching Netflix, I was so bored.

Lynn and her mom brought me some postcards to list and once I discovered I could list from my laptop while in a reclining position, I started looking around the house.

WOW, with my trusty walker I got every cupboard re-organized, the garage totally cleaned out and I have sold $826.00 worth of stuff I would probably have just donated or trashed, that is once I got around to going thru stuff.

Here are a couple things from my garage closets I listed. Not really high ticket, but found money none the less.

Click here to see this auction.

Here is one of my sports purchase I had at the house so I could list that. I paid a dollar a club at a local charity sale.

Click here to see this auction.

In all our stuff, much to my pleasant surprise, I found an autographed Dollar bill from 1957 signed by Gil Hodges (oldtime Dodger baseball player) and an autographed Maury Wills Dodger ticket I had him sign one year in the elevator at Dodger stadium.

All in all things turned out just fine, only one mistake (my husband took a Fedex package to the Post Office) and that got rescued, phew!

I got things cleaned out I likely would have never done and it was nice to take a little break and re-group. January is usually a little slow for me anyway, so it was all good. As my sister said, I made “lemonade out of lemons”.

Now I’ve got the all clear to drive this week (YEAH) so I will be back at it tending to my 2 passions, selling on eBay and working with Cavalier Rescue USA. I hope you all have a fabulous year of selling on eBay!”

Thank you to Coco for sharing! She is awesome and so positive! Can you imagine looking at breaking your hip as a gift? Way to go Coco! Glad you are back to driving and I am sure we will see you tearing up the streets soon 

Now back to the aftermath or should I say fallout from our move. Guess who arrived by plane on February 1st from Bellingham, WA? My father. Perfect timing. Actually, he had no idea we were going to have to move (neither did we ) when he made his reservations. He was coming to visit and to see the Gonzaga Pepperdine Basketball game with us.

I immediately put him to the task of sorting the boxes of jewelry from my grandmother’s antique shop. Can you believe this stuff had been sitting packed in boxes since 2002? I am sure you can all relate.

Check out this awesome Tiffany Brooch that my dad found when sorting those boxes. I knew I had it but wouldn’t have been able to find it….that’s for sure.

My brother and I can’t remember if it was his or mine so we are going to split the proceeds when it sells. They have sold in the $2k range but one seller has one listed at $9k right now and we have the original box. My grandma also bought it from Buffalo Bill Cody’s niece. My grandma had it priced at $2,500.

Click here to see this auction.

The day after my dad arrived, on February 2nd, Indy was really missing her brother and so I faced time him on her phone. I also took the phone around the new house and gave him a virtual tour and then I had Indy talk to him. I think seeing Goose made her even more sad.

Houston thought he should come home and I think he wanted to see how the new house looked and make sure he still had a bedroom . Quite conveniently after all the heavy lifting was done…I might add. Houston’s friend Holly said “take my car and go and see her and your family.”

Here is Houston’s new room all decorated by his sister. Lucky Duck! I mean Lucky Goose!

So the Goose left Pepperdine at about 11 pm to drive out to the desert. I tried to stay awake to greet him, but did not make it because he didn’t get here until 1:30 am. Yikes! He and Indy had a great visit and he stayed the next day as well. My dad didn’t know about all of this late night subterfuge and planning and was shocked and very happy to see Houston the next day when he surfaced around noon.

My dad took us out to a nice steak dinner that night and Houston headed back to school around 10 pm.

Just two days later, we all headed down to Pepperdine to see the Waves take on Gonzaga. We had amazing seats (right behind the players) thanks to Karen in the athletics department!

Here is a photo of how close we were to the bench.

It was a super exciting game but Pepperdine lost it at the very end. The next morning we met up with my brother for brunch and that is where we got all of the Kiki bracelets together.

Then we headed back to the desert Sunday afternoon. Little did we know what was awaiting us in our new home…..and it wasn’t good. When we had left on Saturday the owner was at our house waiting for her installer to put in a new stove top. Unfortunately, the contractor did not tarp the kitchen, the area where he was cutting the concrete counters in the kitchen or any of the rest of the house. There was construction dust everywhere.

And I mean everywhere. On every single utensil, pot, pan, linen, counter top, book, collectible, antique and it didn’t stop at the kitchen. Oh no, that dust traveled to every single corner of the house. It was in bedrooms, bathrooms, in the living room, in the family room, down the hallway etc.

The owner offered to pay to have Servpro clean it and I got them out here on Tuesday morning. The quote to clean it didn’t come back until Wednesday night and apparently it was close to $6,000. She thought that was outrageous and I just went ahead and hired someone else to come in and clean it because at that point, we had all been breathing in that terrible dust. My dad came down with Pneumonia. It has not been fun, but finally we are able to start unpacking again. Ughhhh.

I think it is time for a happy kitchen score to balance out that experience! Check out this Dansk pan that sold for over $100. Yippeee Skipppeeee!

Click here to see this auction.

I want to apologize for the delay in the 2nd volume of the Coffee Mug eBook and I am hoping that after reading this ezine you will understand. That 2nd volume is almost finished so please watch for it before the end of February.

If you missed out on the pre-order pricing I suggest you get it now before the price increases again. Here is a link to pre-order now at the current low rate and you will have access to Volume 1 right away.

Please keep in mind that when I offer introductory pricing for an eBook, I tend to over deliver. If I were you, I would buy this now before my 50+ page eBook turns into 200 pages and the price hits the $100 or more mark.

Click here to pre-order now and you will get Volume 1 immediately.

Many of you emailed me to get more details about this new eBook. I think the best way to answer you all is to share my rough draft outline. So here it is:

  • Introduction
  • Overview
  • History of Coffee Mugs
  • What You Need to Know About Coffee Mugs & Licensing
  • Rise of Coffee Mug Demand
  • My Numbers.–Inventory by Year etc.
  • Where to buy? Estate Sales Thrift Stores Garage Sales
  • What Should You Pay?
  • What to Look For:
  • Brands to Always Buy
  • Questionable Brands
  • Brands to Never Buy
  • Great Designers/Artists
  • Great Subject Matter
  • How to Price?
  • Shipping
  • How to Assembly Line List
  • Sizes and Ounces
  • Promotional Strategies
  • Let’s Put this to the Test
  • Conclusion

Here is one last coffee mug score before I wind this up. The coffee mugs in this Spode pattern were worth more than the dinner plates. I use this example in the new eBook and it is amazing to me that these sold for about $30.00 each. Gotta love coffee mugs!

Click here to see this auction.

I want to end this ezine with a very Happy New Year to all of you and Great Wishes that 2016 will bring you Joy & Happiness. We certainly all deserve it!

Thanks for reading my ezines! I appreciate it!
Happy eBaying!

Lynn Dralle, ‘The Queen of Auctions,’
Creator of the best-selling eBay Boot Camp in a Box.

Lynn is an experienced eBay Power Seller, author and teacher. If you want to know the eBay tips, tricks and tools that Lynn uses for buying and selling at online auction click here.

Some links in my emails to you may be affiliate links. You can be confident that I only partner with companies that I fully stand behind.