Lynn’s eBay eZine April 20th, 2017 Volume XIII, Issue 06


Happy Spring, Easter and Passover! I am hoping that your sales on eBay have been off the charts just like ours have been. We are having a record year so far with sales exceeding $10,000 each month! It has been such a blessing.

I believe a big part of this success has been the 50% off sale I have been running on about 8,000 of our oldest items. Here is one of those items that sold recently.

Click here to see this auction.

It is with a very heavy heart that I write the next part of this ezine. My dad, aka Papa, as most of you know him, was recently diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. It has spread to his liver and his kidneys. He is a fighter and he has many people praying for him . I am hopeful that a few more of you will join us in our prayers.

My dad is the kindest and most giving person I know. He is that one special person who is always more concerned with how you are doing than how he is doing. He loves my kids more than anything and with God’s help and our prayers, he will be visiting us here in Rancho Mirage, next Monday 4/24, for a week.

Now, let’s share a score to lighten the mood. I bought this frame in Bellingham when Mo, Kel and Candy visited Bellingham for a girl’s weekend this past September. If you missed that crazy fun visit you can read about it here in this past ezine .

Click here to see this auction.

Since we got back from our European Vacation, it has been one whirlwind of activity. I have been sorting, sorting and doing more sorting to get out of my office space by May 31st. I recently decided that with everything that is going on, I am going to extend my office lease to June 30th and then reevaluate month by month.

Coco, Queen’s Court Member extraordinaire, has been helping me every Thursday to sort and either put it in a “to list” box or a “donate” box. It has been a tremendous help….so thank you Coco!

As we sort, she always seems to find something that reminds her of her childhood or something that her nephews or niece may like. I always tell her to please take it if she likes it. Most of the time she says “NO” but there was one time that she said “YES” and grabbed this super cool vintage airplane tray. Both of her nephews, Eric (the former MLB player) and CJ are pilots and she knew that they would love it!

I haven’t bought ANYTHING new to list on eBay since I have been sorting back there. I have so much amazing stuff to list that there is absolutely NO reason to buy anything else. Check out these really cool wall candle holder reflectors that recently sold at auction from my warehouse “stash.”

Click here to see this auction.

In some super happy news, Indiana was accepted into 15 out of the 16 colleges she applied to attend. Her plan is to pursue a degree in Musical Theatre. OMG! Seriously? Way to go Indy girl!

There were only five colleges that required auditions or audition interviews….USC, Azusa Pacific, Pepperdine, UCLA and Fordham. This leads me to believe that they have the best Theatre programs.

Here are the colleges that accepted her into their Theatre program (assuming they have one, but most do), Biola, Boston College, LMU, USC, Notre Dame, Pepperdine, Azusa Pacific, Vanguard, Saint Mary’s, UC Irvine, Berkeley, College of the Holy Cross, and University of San Diego.

Here are the colleges that she was not accepted into their Theatre programs, but was admitted, UCLA and Fordham. The only college she did not get accepted into was…..drum roll please……the same one rejection letter that I received……But I was three for four (UofW, USC & Whitman) and Indiana is 15 for 16…..Stanford. Their loss!

Here she is with her first college acceptance.

She has narrowed it down to two schools, Pepperdine and Notre Dame. Please pray for her to make the right decision. She has until May 1st, when the deposits are due.

OK, time for a score. Another item that I found in the back and it sold at auction. Amazing! I need to get all of that shizzle listed. LOL

Click here to see this auction.

Indy was recently the bird seller in the play Sweeney Todd. You wanna talk depressing? Well, that play was macabre. Indy did an amazing job and she was so wonderful as both the bird seller and a member of the ensemble cast. I invited all my friends with an email that had this subject line…”Any of you want to go see this SUPER depressing thriller with me? Indy has a small part.”

I just bought a $15 ticket for Friday night….looks like they have only sold about 25 seats….let me know and I will get you tickets.

Well, at that point you know who your real friends are….LOL. Mo, Kel and Kelly Flanagan all wanted to attend. Thank you girls! You ROCK! Here is an amazing picture that Kflan (that is what I call Kelly Flanagan) took.

Here we all are after the play with Indy and her flowers. She did an AWESOME job!

Time for a score that relates to music. This is an item that I sold for my brother. Took a best offer of $125.00. Nice!

Click here to see this auction.

Indy left for New York on Tuesday, April 18th for a six day theatre trip with her Musical Theatre University. The students who are on the trip will take four master classes from current Broadway stars, see three Broadway plays and get to perform at a very famous venue. What an interesting and an amazing experience!

Here is a score of a very interesting item that recently sold for a best offer of $200. Yay!

Click here to see this auction.

The same day Indy left, Houston arrived home from Heidelberg. He wanted to head straight to Pepperdine to spend time with his friends, so instead of me getting to see him and bring him home, my brother went to LAX to pick him up for me. He will get a ride from his dad back to the desert on April 20th, which is today! I can’t wait to see him.

Here he is with Uncle Lee at LAX.

Although, Houston had the time of his life, he has been texting me recently that he is ready to come home. I was curious as to why and he explained that “It’s just time haha. I’ve been here awhile.”

Check out this epic photo of Houston standing in front of all of the faculty and the staff.

Houston is wearing a wool blazer that we bought him at Revivals Thrift store over Christmas and the brown cords I bought for him when we were all in Heidelberg. He looks so collegiate .

The reason he was facing everyone is that I am guessing that he is taking a one second video. He took a ton of one second videos during his first semester and Indiana made it into a cool youtube video.

Here is a link if you want to watch semester one .

Here is an item that recently sold for a best offer of over $100 and reminds me of Pepperdine. Surfboards…

Click here to see this auction.

So our Queen’s Court challenge for April has been an interesting one. As you know, I have been working very hard to weed through all of my unlisted inventory. In fact, today I donated 50 boxes full of books, glass, lamp shades, etc. and 8 huge garbage bags of Brenthaven computer sleeves. It really made me feel so happy and enlightened. It lightened my load… both literally and figuratively .

Here is one of the back aisles where nothing is listed with all the donate boxes on the floor.

Here is the Coachella Valley Rescue Mission truck with most of my stuff in it. Tyler and Antonio were awesome and did a great job loading it all up.

So here is how the April challenge came to be….

While I was going through all of those old boxes of stuff that have not been listed yet with Coco’s (fellow QCers) help, I asked her what do you think would be a great challenge for April?

She thought about it and came up with a few suggestions…none of them struck a chord with me and after three hours of cleaning off 8 shelves (thank you Coco), she called me from her car and said, “I think I have it!”

She suggested a month long challenge of exploring your inner creative (aka artistic April) self and trying something new that is outside of your COMFORT zone. I LOVED IT!

I think she was suggesting it so that I would try to cook something special for my kids for dinner. NEVER gonna happen. But I liked the challenge.

One of our newer QC members, Lizzie, is from England and here is what she posted….

“Another inspiring challenge! A few ideas have sprung to mind…I’m going to work on making my main eBay area more like an artist’s studio than the back room of a warehouse… and hopefully feel more creative as a result… and take three items I have put aside needing repairs to the jewelers to see if they can be fixed. Have fun getting creative everyone! xx Lizzie”

I wrote back….

“Lizzie, WOW! I love the idea of turning your work space into an artist’s studio. Please take before and after photos. So happy your hubby showed up to surprise you and your son.”

“Lynn, soz.. I totes forgot to take before shots today before a flurry of tidying… thought briefly of putting all the half-filled plastic crates, shipping flotsam & jetsam, used coffee mugs & spent biros back for a staged before photo, but soon thought better of it! Will get a photo out of the results though… but, oh my gosh I so want to work in some fairy lights after seeing that art space for Indy! What interior scheme can’t be improved by some electric bling? wahoooo… inspired YES!!”

Here is the photo of Indy’s art studio that I had created for her when she was away at a bible camp. It was my creative goal for April to finally recreate that same space here in our new garage….when we had to move into our new home two Decembers ago…Yikes! I still haven’t gotten it set up. I will do it before month’s end to meet April’s challenge goal!

I wrote back to Lizzie…

“NEVER put back your progress to stage a photo just take it when you realize you should have taken one and that way it encourages you to improve even more before you take the after photo. I use tiny white lights all over my house….they are one of my favorite decorating tools. I LOVE that you call them ‘fairy lights.’ We have them in all of our bedrooms and in the living room and family room. They make every space a happy space.

“Lol Lynn, yes I only considered it for a second or so! Well, here is my blinged office area. These lights just make me smile so much, & I have some art up on the wall behind my computer, will get a nice bunch of flowers for a final touch  I noticed that the colours on the lights are actually the ebay logo colours! Just happened to have those in the Christmas deco box . Happy Easter everyone xx Queen’s court.”

Nice! And so inspiring!

I have been very inspired lately and can’t wait to open up my Grandmother’s new/old antiques store in Bellingham. I flew up there as soon as I found out my dad was sick and got to spend a lot of time with him.

I was also able to watch Gonzaga advance to the finals for basketball at his house with a lot of family around. It was great. Too bad that final game was such a terrible game for the Zags. I actually blame the coach for that loss. What do you all think?

Here I am with my dad while watching the final game.

And, I also got to spend a lot of time with my darling nephews since it was Spring Break.

While in Bellingham from April 1st to the 4th, I think I found some retail space. Super excited about it. Hopefully, it will work out and I will be opening up sometime in early Fall.

Here is a recent score that sold on eBay for full asking price. I bought it in a Bellingham antique store for $5.00. Yowza!

Click here to see this auction.

So while up in Bellingham checking out retail space, Audrey Angel, my first Cheryl Leaf employee met me and my mom at several of the spaces. This is the one that we all liked the best, but it was priced over market price. Trying to work out a deal with them that will work for both of us.

This past winter in Bellingham was super harsh, so while I was in Bellingham Audrey asked if she could come down and visit. I said “Absolutely! Houston’s bedroom will be empty until April 20th, so please take us up on our offer. Mi casa es su casa. Our house is your house.”

She made plans to come down for a few days. We ended up having a blast. Audrey was my original employee at Cheryl Leaf Antiques and she and I toured a lot of Consignment stores here in the Coachella Valley and came up with some awesome ideas!

We also had some really fun nights out with my friends. Here are Audrey and I at Guillermo’s before Mo, Kflan and Lori showed up. It turned out to be a super fun night and we ubered home. Never drink and drive.

While cleaning up the back of the warehouse and sorting with Audrey and Coco, I found a pile of old family newspaper articles, ancient black and white photos (I do mean ancient like 1930’s) and two color photos. It was the strangest thing. Maybe it was meant to be….Kismet. The two color photos were of my two kids with Audrey’s two kids.

Our kids were born within months of each other. Houston was first in July of 1996, then Audrey and John’s, Madeline, came along a month later in August. Here they are at Elizabeth Park in the gazebo for Madeline’s 3th birthday party. How cute is this?

And what is even stranger, is that we were at Elizabeth Park in Bellingham twice this past summer. I do think that someone, or a few people, are sending me a sign.

In addition to that color photo, I found this color photo and while holding it and wondering who the kids were…Audrey from about 10 feet away saw it upside down and said “That’s Indy and Ana at the same birthday party.” What? Yikes!

Indy was born in December of 1998 so she would have been 8 months old and Anabelle was born in March of 1999 so she would have been 5 months old in that photo. WOW!

So here is one final awesome score to share with you! This sold for full price today, but I had to ship it to Australia. Ughhh! But Thank GOD for our international sales!

Click here to see this auction.

Also, while cleaning up I found these amazing vintage photos of my dad. When I said that the only new color photos I found were of Audrey’s kids with mine, I was serious.

This first photo is one of my absolute favorites of my dad. It is him on the left, my mom’s cousin Donald in the center and my grandfather, Elmer Leaf, on the right. I have to smile at the 22 on the cabin they are staying in as that is my favorite number and it was always Houston’s baseball number.

I was talking to my mom about it and she said “that is not a hunting cabin, that is where your dad and I lived when we were married students at WSU (Washington State University) in Pullman and they were converted army barracks. The address is 22 Fairway Lane.” Yikes is all I could say.

We all agreed that my dad and my grandfather’s big smiles just show how happy they were that day. My grandfather had one of his favorite dogs, Brit, with him and Brit was just a puppy. Oh those great old days . Please bring them back.

Here is one last crazy old photo to share. It is of my grandpa Elmer Leaf barbequing behind the antique shop, my grandmother setting up a table and my dad sitting and watching before this area became a driveway.

I love this because it looks so staged…like a photo shoot for Better Homes & Gardens and my mom laughed when I told her that because she said “that backyard was not worthy of Better Homes & Gardens.” LOL. I loved that little space .

OK, one more score from something I inherited from my grandmother and was used in her home…since her home is shown in that last photo . These andirons were in my grandmother’s private residence and inside her fireplace.

She used that fireplace daily to burn all of her private papers. She was way smart. She knew that no one should see her personal information…again way ahead of her time. I miss you Cheryl Leaf and please pray for my dad, Wayne Dralle, I don’t want to miss him yet…it is too soon.

Click here to see this auction.

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.

Vacation Travel Journal #3 of 3 Lynn’s eBay eZine March 15th, 2017 Volume XIII, Issue 05


Here it is… my third and final eZine from Europe! As you know, I wrote three of these during our 12 days abroad. There is one for each portion of our trip; London, EnglandHeidelberg, Germany and Kraków, Poland. It was my goal to keep you updated and also to use this as my family’s travel journal! Goal accomplished! 

My last ezine left us getting out of our private car at the Frankfurt airport. We would be flying Lufthansa for the next leg of our journey from Frankfurt to Kraków, Poland. Houston thinks Lufthansa is the “bee’s knees.” Translation, sweet and good or in today’s lingo “cool.”

The slogan comes from the yellow jacket bee which flies from flower to flower gathering nectar which sticks to their knees. Since the nectar is sweet and good the term “bee’s knees” originated. I had heard my grandmother saying this quite a bit over the years but never knew its history. Pretty cool! Aka Bee’s Knees .

Speaking of bees, I have a coffee mug listed with a bee on it. I think it is pretty special so (of course) I priced it quite high. Check it out here. If you don’t have my Coffee Mug eBook you should also check that out.

Click here to see this auction.

Here is a question I got about that mug today… “Is the pricing correct? $49 for one mug? I have the exact one that I bought at TJ Maxx? Thank you.”

LOL! I answered “yes it is correct .”

When we got out of our luxury ride at the Frankfurt airport and proceeded to check in with Lufthansa, we got a rude awakening! Remember, all four of us had fallen asleep in the car . Lufthansa does not offer one free checked bag per person.

Each bag we were checking would cost us 30 Euros. Seriously? What a bummer! I had to pay for Indiana and my bags which cost me about $65.00. Hadn’t planned on that! Luckily, Houston is skilled in this European travel thing and his HUGE backpack went right on the plane with him. No charge and it was definitely oversized.

We were taking a super late night flight, 9:20 pm local time on Thursday, February 23rd, from Frankfurt to Kraków as Houston had to attend class earlier that day. I know this isn’t the greatest photo (don’t be mad Indy & Mor Mor), but I just had to share. As soon as we settled into our airline seats, my mom and Indy fell asleep again. They actually have quite similar noses.

The flight was 2 hours and 30 minutes but we gained an hour from Germany to Poland, so when we landed at 10:50 pm we were all pretty exhausted.

My mom’s really great friend Izabella Wodzicki is originally from Kraków and that is one reason we chose to visit it. In addition, Houston is currently studying Nazi Germany and he wanted to tour Auschwitz. Isabella has four children and her son Wojtek was in my graduating class at Sehome High and I was also good friends with her daughter Halinka. Small world! Her other two children’s names are Misha and Stefan.

Here is a great picture of my mom and Izzie (aka Izabella).

Izabella highly recommended that we visit Kraków. Here is a blurb that my mom emailed to me about Kraków that I think must have come from Izzie….”Kraków combines the loveliness of Prague with the quaintness and relaxed pace of a smaller city. Its cobblestoned streets and beautiful historic buildings tend to simultaneously enchant and inspire visitors. The city’s beauty and storied past have made it a symbol of the Polish nation as a whole. Also it the place of Schindler’s List and there is a museum there.”

Here is a Polish Pottery bowl that I sold back in January for about $70.

Click here to see this auction.

In addition, Izabella recommended that we stay at Hotel Wentzl. Well, she was spot on with all of her advice! Hotel Wentzl is located right in the main square and it was quite reasonable. Of all the countries we visited, Poland was the most reasonably prices. Check this out, we only traveled to three different European countries and of course we had to pick three countries that all use DIFFERENT currency. Seriously?

We had to have Pounds for England, Euros for Germany and Zlotys for Poland. Could it have been a little bit easier? NOPE!

Hotel Wentzl was a joy to work with. They arranged for two adjoining rooms overlooking the square. Here is a photo of Hotel Wentzl from the square. Our rooms are circled.

The hotel even offered to provide transport from the airport for 90 Zlotys. That is about $20. Bargain! When we got off the plane in Kraków, there was Roddik waiting for us with a sign that had my name on it. We LOVE Roddik.

Here is a photo of Roddik that I took later on in the trip. He made quite a few appearances during our short 4 day stay.

It was cold in Kraków when we arrived to the hotel late that Thursday night. It was about 20 degrees. The kid’s room was decorated in crazy black (or it could have been a dark brown) and white geometrics and had really interesting (insert creepy) photos on the walls. The kids were both a little freaked out and wanted to switch rooms with Mor Mor and I. Not gonna happen! Here is Indy putting on her boot in front of one of those “creepy” photos and trying to zip up her suitcase at the same time. LOL!

We had decided to try and visit Auschwitz either Friday or Saturday, as Houston had to fly back to Heidelberg early Sunday morning to study for a midterm. He has been a stellar student this year and made Dean’s list and got straight A’s last semester all while taking 18 units and being in Europe. Super proud! When we got settled in our rooms, I insisted that Houston come over to our room and book the tickets for the tour.

Since we were coming up on the weekend, Friday was already sold out so we bought three tickets for a bus tour to Auschwitz – Birkenau for Saturday. My mom was having some trouble walking and the tour said that you would walk about four miles. She opted out. In addition, she had visited Dachau in Germany many years ago, and the experience had never left her….as I was about to discover why.

To lighten the mood a little bit here is a recent score of mine. I bought this pillow by the famous California designer Trina Turk at a storage unit sale about 6 months ago. I sold it for close to $50 and probably paid $1. It really reminds me of the geometric wall pattern in the kid’s room at Hotel Wentzl.

Click here to see this auction.

We all slept in a bit the next morning (except my 80 year old mother), who is always up at the crack of dawn and has more energy than all of three of us combined. She was itching to get going so we all piled on the layers (it was freezing) and headed out into the square to find some breakfast. After breakfast, we would make plans to visit museums.

Here are the kids and I fighting the bitter wind and cold in front of the Kraków Cloth Hall. This photo cracks me up because my hair color almost exactly matches that pom pom on the top of my hat. And yes, for anyone that cares, my hair color is natural and real! Amazing, but true. Luckily, I have not had to color it yet. Fingers crossed that it last for many more years just the way it is!

I have to apologize that some of these photos seem to be out of focus. My mom took them and we just figured out today that the lens on her camera phone was dirty. Ughhhh. But at least you get the gist.

The wind was biting cold and we realized that if we walked through the vendor stalls in the Cloth Hall we would all stay a bit warmer. Not much though. I noticed that tons of tourists were taking photos in the aisle and insisted on one of my mom, Houston and Indy.

Houston hates it when I take too many photos and act like a tourist, but whatever….maybe someday he will thank me (wishful thinking). That is the reason that you usually see him with a goofy face.

But, in case you missed his AWESOME haircut in the last pictures from the Heidelberg travelogue, check it out here. Handsome son, darling daughter and beautiful Mor Mor….all of them….both inside and out. I am blessed.

Amazingly enough, that day, February 24th, I sold $618.54 on eBay. And another blessing was that Mo and Carmen were back in the office working like crazy to get everything shipped out.

Here is one of the items that sold that day.

Click here to see this auction.

We had a wonderful breakfast at Lozas and then headed off to the ticket office to purchase tickets for the Main Square underground tour and Houston’s pick of the Schindler factory tour.

We would tour the archeological dig under the main square at noon and then we had a reserved time for the Schindler factory at 3:30 pm. It was going to be a busy day!

The history of the underground museum is fascinating. Here is some background from Wikipedia…..

Rynek Underground Permanent Exhibition

The underground square central museum of Kraków is situated below the market square of the city and has an area of over 6000 square meters. Work on the underground square first began at the start of 2009 and cost 38 million Zlotys.

About $9.5 million US.

The museum opened on September 24, 2010, and displayed regular exhibitions. The main feature “In the footsteps of Kraków’s European identity” was launched three days later.

The main exhibit, “In the footsteps of Kraków’s European identity”, makes use of holograms constructed by using projectors alongside fog machines and several dozen screens and projectors to recreate the atmosphere of Kraków seven hundred years ago. The exhibition allows visitors to see six hundred models in three dimensions via thirty seven touch screens placed throughout.

Adjacent to the multimedia exhibit and underneath the Sukiennice building lie the medieval tracts. Visitors explore the medieval exhibits by walking over glass ramps that hang over the area.

This part of the museum includes remains of medieval constructions including:

  • A reconstructed 12th century workshop.

  • Former waterworks aqueducts.

  • The remains of burned settlements, the oldest of which dates from the eleventh century.

  • A reconstruction of a medieval merchant’s stall.

  • A map depicting distant trade routes.

The museum was INCREDIBLE. I am fascinated by history and you just wouldn’t believe the graves and artifacts that were found in this amazing archeological dig that left all the remnants exactly where found in the underground museum. Here is a photo of the square from our hotel room.

Here is a photo of the square during the archeological dig that created this museum that was able to leave each and every find in its exact location. Amazing.

Here is a recent relic (because it had been listed on eBay since 2011) that I sold which reminds me of some of the items that we saw in the museum. There were all kinds of tools of the different trades. Blacksmiths, fabric weavers, jewelers, cutlery makers etc.

Click here to see this auction.

After visiting that fascinating museum it was time to grab a cab and head into the Jewish sector to visit Schindler’s Factory. I MUST watch Schindler’s List again now that I have been there. The museum is located in and on the original site where Oskar Schindler saved many Jewish lives.

It is a very powerful and thought provoking exhibit. It is very well done and quite state of the art. You walk through many different areas, the rubble from Auschwitz, the cobblestone of the main square, and the black leather that represents the burning of the Jewish sector. The museum was packed and it was hard to stay together. I think the walking was really hard on my mom, but she was a trouper. That night we had made special plans. It was going to be another long, but fun day!

My mom’s friend Izabella had told us about a special restaurant, but said it may be too expensive to eat dinner there. She did suggest that we stop in for an appetizer and drink. It is called Wierzynek and was founded in 1364, the oldest restaurant in Poland…maybe even the world. We had inquired about reservations first thing on Friday morning, but were told that an entrée was about 100 Zlotys. Not being accustomed to Zlotys yet, we thought it was too expensive and decided not to make reservations.

After our tour of the Main Square underground where we had watched a documentary about this restaurant and the massive two week feast that took place there in 1364, we realized that 100 Zlotys was only about $25 and we could even share an entrée. When we got back to the hotel, we requested a reservation for 7 pm and luckily, we were accommodated! It was truly one of the high points of our trip.

Another high point, was selling this item that very night that would pay for my, Houston and Indy’s dinner. Memories being made thanks to eBay!

Click here to see this auction.

The restaurant was white gloved heaven! White tablecloths and very hush, hush, snooty. When Houston was little one of his dreams was to eat in a restaurant with white tablecloths. Little did he know that we would have white tablecloths and white gloves!

Before we even ordered, I insisted on a photo. I knew that once the restaurant got busy the kids would not stand for it. Here is my instagram post. The comments are hysterical .

Since not all the comments would show in my screen saver, I had to add a few of them in a different photo. One from Queen’s Court member, Coco and one from a favorite baseball coach of Houston’s.

We got our photo out of the way! Whew! Then it was time to order. Indy and I got the fillet, Houston had pheasant and Mor Mor had beef cheeks. They brought us a complimentary first course of “pigeon.” Seriously, I thought I was going to throw up.

I took one bite of the pigeon and decided I would NEVER eat pigeon again. But since I didn’t want to be rude, I messed up my plate to look like I had eaten some of it. Smart? Probably not. Polite? Maybe. Let me know what you think??

In keeping with the bird theme, it is time to share a bird score! This item sold for full price right before our trip. NEVER pass up cribbage boards and NEVER eat pigeon. LOL.

Click here to see this auction.

After the pigeon, but before our main course arrived, I took a great photo of the kids that shows the rest of the amazing private room we were seated in behind me. BTW, I think they put us in this very back room in case we were a bunch of rude American tourists. I sincerely hope that we were not and I do think we were all on our best behavior.

When the main course arrived it was quite the presentation. Two servers arrived, who were both wearing white gloves, and they took the four silver domes off of our plates at the exact same time and made a clanging sound. It was one of the COOLEST things I have ever seen! I was having a blast.

We ended up ordering desert and it was also spectacular. While at dinner I got a phone call and message from my bank. They knew I was in Europe, but there had been a questionable charge on my Visa. I excused myself and went to the bathroom to call them and sort it out. I have Tmobile and their international plans are incredible. Free text and data and only 20 cents a minute for either outgoing or incoming calls while traveling internationally.

Quickly got it handled and was back at the table to pay the check but Mor Mor had already taken care of it. What a doll! Icing on the cake! The perfect end to the perfect day. On the way out of the restaurant, Mor Mor took a great photo of me and the kids. I LOVE this photo because it shows how much fun we were having and how much Indy loves spending time with her brother.

When I reflect back on our trip and the three different countries we visited, I have a highpoint and favorite memory from each place. From England it was the front row seats to “School of Rock”, from Germany it was the dinner with Houston and his best buddies at the Schnitzel Haus and from Poland it was that dinner at the expensive restaurant. BTW, even though my mom paid for that dinner, it was only about $45 per person which included drinks, dessert and a hefty gratuity. Pretty reasonable if you ask me. A dinner in LA or Palm Desert can cost you that much!

Thinking about dinner and how important that meal can be for family, friends and togetherness makes me realize even more why dinnerware is my “hands down” best selling category. I sold over $30,000 worth of dinnerware on eBay last year. I am not including flatware in that number, just good old plates, cups and serving pieces. Thank goodness for my dinnerware sales on eBay!

Here is a recent score of Villeroy & Boch. You all know from the Germany travelogue ezine that I tried to buy some at their factory store in Heidelberg. NO WAY could I pay those prices and ship it home. I recently found a set at a local consignment store that I paid $200 to bring home (free of any shipping charge in the back of my SUV). I ended up selling $150.00 of it at auction. Quite a rarity…most does NOT sell at auction and I still have about $1,500 listed at fixed price in my eBay store. Gotta love dinnerware. If you don’t have my dinnerware eBook you are missing out.

Here is a sandwich tray that sold for $69.99 at auction.

Click here to see this auction.

The next morning was the tour of Auschwitz for the kids and me so we called it an early night. We woke up to snow falling and it was quite the somber morning as we walked to the meeting place for our group tour. Houston and Indy had specifically asked me NOT to take any photos or selfies that day and I totally understood. It was going to be a day of reflection and silence.

Here is a snapchat post that Indy did that morning. Can you see from that photo how depressing the day was going to be? I certainly can.

Indy’s broken foot had recovered enough that she was able to start wearing shoes with solid heels (as per doctor’s orders). She was wearing the darling black boots that we had both bought in Norwalk, CA and unfortunately as we walked towards the meeting place, the boot on her right foot (the broken one) would not zip up and was literally falling apart. She and the Goose decided they had better scurry back to the hotel and get her walking boot cast or she wouldn’t make the day walking over 4 miles.

Thank goodness the boot that fell apart was the one where she could replace it with the walking boot. If it had been the other way around, I don’t know what we would have done. My black boots were a full size smaller so that wouldn’t have helped.

The ride to Auschwitz in the tour bus was very quiet. The video that they were going to show didn’t work and we all kind of dozed off. When we arrived on that cold snowy windy morning to tour the Auschwitz museum, no one spoke much.

After passing through security, our tour guide gave us head phones to wear so that we could hear him conduct the tour in English. At least 1.4 million Jews were killed at Auschwitz and each year there are over 1 million visitors to the site which is called a museum. I wouldn’t call it a museum, but rather a place to NEVER forget what happened to these completely innocent people and to make sure it NEVER happens again.

I only took two photos that day. One at the gate to Auschwitz, which I can’t even imagine ever having to pass through as a prisoner and another later in the day.

Here is the gate at Auschwitz.

The wrought iron sign says “Arbeit Macht Frei” which means “Work sets you Free.” What a terrible, terrible place. The tour was long and cold. I was exhausted from walking up and down the worn stairs, seeing the torture chamber, the execution wall and walking through the gas chamber. If I couldn’t handle a four hour tour, how did the people who were sent there even survive?

It made me realize how awful this place was and what a dark place it must have been for its inhabitants. I almost threw up in a few of the rooms. Seeing what these poor, innocent people went through on a daily basis is too much to even comprehend. But I do realize how important it is to recognize that this can NEVER happen again.

After Auschwitz, we went to see the camp at Birkenau where the Nazi’s would bring in trains full of Jews to get rid of in their gas chambers. It was eerily large, empty and very depressing.

I will NEVER forget that day and the people that lost their lives for NO reason. I said many prayers that day for them and could feel their presence. It was eerie.

My mom’s friend Izabella was also sent out of her native Poland back in 1939 for being Polish (you didn’t have to be Jewish to be banished). She and her family were shipped off to Siberia in train cars. After Siberia, they were moved to Iraq and then they moved to Africa where Izabella grew up in the shadow of Mount Kilimanjaro.

At some point they relocated to England where they rejoined her father. Eventually, the family was reunited and they moved to New York when Izzie was in her 20’s. It is a terrible chapter in the world’s history and the trip to Krakow was very important for all of us to experience.

After the tour, we rode the tour bus back in silence and most of us fell asleep. When we arrived back in Krakow, I took the kids by a local mini-market to get some snacks and we made plans for dinner.

Here is Houston walking down the aisle, does he look European or what?

But before dinner, I had spotted a Benetton store across the main square that was having a 70% off sale. I used to love to shop at Benetton when I was in college. It was a store for people who care about the world. Their slogan is “United Colors of Benetton.” And I couldn’t wait to introduce my kids to my 1980’s world.

Apparently, the Krakow store only carried women’s items but luckily we found a pair of really AWESOME shoes for Indy that were 70% off and only cost me $19. SCORE!

Here is another clothing score that I recently sold on eBay. It sold for more than double what the Benetton shoes cost.

Click here to see this auction.

Then we went to dinner at Spaghetti. I had been walking by a restaurant named Spaghetti for 2 days and since I was on the Weight Watchers diet I was seriously ready for some carbs. We got an amazing table in the basement and Houston did a crazy hand trick in the fire. LOL. Just kidding. It was an optical illusion.

The next morning Houston would be getting picked up by Taxi at 9 am to fly back to Heidelberg for his studies. So we all got up really early…like 8 am and tried to find a place to have breakfast. LOL. The only places open were a chocolate shoppe and McDonalds. I opted for an Egg McMuffin and everyone else just had coffee and croissants.

We cracked up when we got back to the hotel and in the lobby waiting for Houston was none other than Roddik. The best driver in all of POLAND!

I had given Houston 100 Zlotys for his ride and asked him if he was going to tip the driver since it was only 80 Zlotys. He said “NO WAY! I can buy breakfast in the airport with the extra Zlotys.” OK, no problem, it was his money to spend.

I took a bunch of pictures of Houston and Indy in the plaza before he left. I LOVE this one because you can see her new, awesome Benetton shoes and it shows how much they love one another.

Let’s check out another recent clothing score I had. You do realize that eBay is what makes this life work for me? It has changed my world and I hope yours as well.

Click here to see this auction.

Well, this mini travelogue is turning into a long dissertation, so I had better finish it up or it will never get to you!

After Houston left to return to Heidelberg, Indy and I both took naps. Later that day, we toured an amazing museum which is located right behind St. Mary’s Church and it showed what different room settings looked like in Poland in the late 1800’s! It was fantastic.

Here is Indiana reading about one of the bedrooms and my mom listening. Please notice the chamber pot under the bed which was made by Villeroy & Boch. When I pointed it out to Indiana she went “oooooh.”

For those of you who don’t remember the Indiana chamber pot story you can read it in this past ezine.

I will be sharing many more photos and more information in my Antiques from A to Z book. After that tour, Indy had a headache since she had to read all of the informational cards to me and my mom. So, she went back to the hotel to take another nap and my mom and I went to see St. Mary’s Altar. It was seriously amazing!

Speaking of Churches and Mary, check out this recent listing on eBay that I had listed as Mary and Joseph’s carriage. I just got an email that it may just be May and Joseph. I think I am a little overworked .

Click here to see this auction.

That night Indy, Mor Mor and I had dinner at Marmalade. A wonderful Krakow restaurant. The next morning my mom and I packed up our room since we had to check out at noon and Indy had the “weird creepy” room until 2 pm. We moved all our stuff over there.

Then we had breakfast in one of those heated outdoor restaurants that is enclosed in plastic. The day was supposed to get up to 62 degrees so we were super excited to finally have some nice weather.

We had also arranged for a golf cart tour of The Former Jewish District….. Kazimierz – the district south of the Old Town between the Wisla River and ul Dietla and then we would head up to the castle before we needed to grab our ride with Roddik to the airport for our 7 pm flight to Heathrow.

The golf cart tour of the Jewish District was amazing and very touching. The main plaza with the empty metal chairs brought tears to all of our eyes. When Nazi Germany emptied out the Jewish District they had everyone gather in that main square. It was just the elderly and children that were left from section B…the part that was too old or too young to work. When the children saw the elderly standing uncomfortably, they went back to their homes and brought out chairs for them to sit down in and at least rest before they were taken to be killed. TERRIBLE!

The memorial is very touching and a wonderful tribute to those who lost their lives for NO REASON.

The very nice golf cart tour driver dropped us off at the top of the hill where the castle is located. Unfortunately, the castle is closed on Mondays. Major bummer! So we were not able to tour any of it nor see the famous Da Vinci Oil painting, Lady with ermine which hangs there.

The closest we got were to some souvenirs in the castle gift shop.

Here is a panoramic photo that Indy took on Mor Mor’s phone of my mom and me in front of the castle and the church.

Speaking of castles and princesses, here is a figurine of Rapunzel that I recently sold. I had purchased it at an Angel View on our way to the eBay radio party in Las Vegas several years ago and it sold for $59.99 in my 50% off sale. Yipppeeee!

Click here to see this auction.

Here is a selfie that we took behind the castle overlooking the river. Even though it was in the 60’s there was still a chilling wind.

We left the castle and walked back down the hill to our hotel. Arriving just in time to put our luggage in storage and head out into the sunny square to have lunch. Fun!

It was packed and crazy busy! We had the same waiter, Damon, two days in a row .

Lunch was quite enjoyable in the sunny square and at 4 pm we walked back to our hotel where we were picked up by Roddik!

On the way to the airport we were chatting and I asked Roddik if he and Houston had a nice visit. Roddik said that Houston wanted to talk about politics and communism. Interesting! I just had to ask “Did my son tip you?” and guess what he did! That’s my boy!

Our flight from Krakow was scheduled for 6:50 pm that night, Monday, February 27th and we would be returning to London to spend one night before flying out the next morning back to LAX.

My mom got the special wheelchair treatment to our flight and this time we got to ride in a lift that took us up next to the right hand side of the plane. It was fun! There was a special little boy named Harry who was also riding in the lift with us. He was returning home to England from outside of Krakow (close to the Pope’s hometown) where he had just been for a week of physical therapy. He was more exited to go home than we were!

We really enjoyed meeting him and he made us all laugh because he was so positive and yet poked fun at his parents and us! It was a joy to spend time with him.

Upon arrival at Heathrow, we bid adieu to Harry and his parents and were thrilled to find that a cab ride to our Heathrow hotel would only be 25 Pounds. Yippppeee! It was about 10 pm and we hadn’t had dinner so I went down to the restaurant to grab some food and I took my computer so that I could finish writing the Germany portion of my ezine.

Indy was too tired to leave the room, so I ordered her a child’s meal of pasta and ice cream and my mom borrowed a rolling cart to take it up to her in the hotel room. Thanks Mor Mor!

Pasta bowls sell very well on eBay. Especially those made by Williams Sonoma. Check out this one that sold for full price during February.

Click here to see this auction.

I ended up staying in the restaurant until 1:30 am to finish the Germany ezine. Needless to say, I was exhausted when I had to wake up the next morning at 8 am to head back to Heathrow. Here are Indiana and I with all our luggage (that just kept expanding) walking into Heathrow for the final leg of our trip.

I was texting back and forth with my brother quite a bit and I said that we were sad to go home, but it was time. Twelve days of togetherness was enough! And it wasn’t really a vacation because we were constantly in motion. My brother commented that the sign of a perfect trip is when you are sad to leave but happy to return home. Mission accomplished!

Just as our plane was taxing to take off, I remembered to text Lee that we would be arriving at LAX on American Flight 909 at about 2:40 pm and if he could possibly sneak away from work to meet us and drive me to Parking Lot C, that would help us immensely. I also mentioned that Mom had a small gift for him .

Our return flight was amazing. It was practically empty and Indiana and I got our own row of four seats and my mom had an empty seat next to her as well. I watched three movies, slept a bit and before we knew it we had landed at LAX. Getting through customs was a breeze and as we came out, there was my brother with a big smile on his face!

What a sweetheart . My mom gave him his gift, a box of chocolates, and I got a great picture of them just as two of the chocolates fell to the ground in front of the International terminal.

My mom was going to pick them up to eat and Lee said “NO! There are too many germs in this terminal from around the world. Do not do that.” I had to laugh because you know, “Mama always said life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re gonna get.

Lee drove me to my car (luckily we found it with GPS) and even more wonderful it started! You just never know after not driving for 13 days what your car is going to do. I drove back into LAX to pick up my mom, Indy and all the luggage and we got on the freeway to head back to Palm Desert.

It was about 4 pm when we left LAX. It ended up taking me 4 hours driving in traffic and I don’t know how I did it but somehow a few diet cokes and my mom staying awake and chatting helped us arrive safely.

It was back to reality! Luckily we only had 20 things to ship the next day, Wednesday, March 1st (my dad’s birthday) thanks to Carmen and Mo’s hard work while we were gone. Business had been great while we were in Europe and it has continued into March. For the past 31 days on eBay, we have sold $12,784.68 which puts us up 9.7% over the prior 31 days and a 39.9% increase over last year. Wow! I am extremely grateful to eBay for allowing me to live the life that I do.

With that, I will end with one final score and a big thank you for reading along and joining us on our European Vacation!

I paid $5 for this darling doll and just thought I was getting a trunk type suitcase for an American Girl Doll. What a surprise when I found out what was in the bottom of the trunk and that these sell for over $100. This one actually sold at auction. I started it $99.00 and it got 18 bids. Yippppeeeee!

Click here to see this auction.

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.

Vacation Travel Journal #2 of 3 Lynn’s eBay eZine March 5th, 2017 Volume XIII, Issue 04


Here it is… my second eZine from Europe! As you know, I will be writing three of these during our 12 days abroad. There will be one for each portion of our trip; London, England, Heidelberg, Germany and Krakow, Poland. It is my goal to keep you updated and also to use this as my family’s travel journal! Before I get started, let me say Happy Birthday to my Dad as today is his actual birthday .

Here is a throwback photo of my dad with Lee and I. We were at Storyland Valley Zoo in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. My brother and I LOVED going there in the summers when my dad was teaching at University of Alberta. Do you think I am rocking my turquoise blue cowboy hat with my shorts? Yikes!

The first “European Vacation” eZine ended with us getting ready to fly to Frankfurt. Our amazing cab driver Tony had hooked us up with a buddy of his named “Dutch” to take us directly to terminal 5 at Heathrow. It was painless and a bargain at one “bullseye.” A bullseye is a 50 pound note and that was much cheaper and easier than our arduous journey out of Heathrow .

Here we are in the British Airways terminal….happy as can be…not knowing what was to come! They even had a purple wheelchair for my mom. Wow!

Once we arrived in Frankfurt, things did not go so smoothly and I am NOT kidding. I had better share a score before I get into that nightmare. Here is a Villeroy & Boch piece that I took a best offer on while we were in Germany (the country of this gravy boat’s origin ).

Click here to see this auction.

So we got off of our British Airways flight and walked up the gangway looking for our wheelchair assist. We couldn’t find anyone and then suddenly Varina appeared. She was amazing. However, the rest of our journey was NOT.

First we had to walk about three football fields to customs (thank God my mom was in a wheelchair) and we got through that in a breeze. Next up, was walking another seven football fields to the luggage carousel. We grabbed our luggage, but since we had brought extra suitcases to take stuff home for Houston we needed a luggage cart to put it all on.

It cost one Euro. Of course, I didn’t have any Euros (only pounds left) so we needed to find an ATM or someone who would exchange $1 for a Euro. Houston had warned us not buy or exchange money before we got to any new country, so we had no Euros with us.

Finally, I found an ATM and took out 100 Euros but it was in two 50’s. Now, how do you get a one euro coin for a 50 Euro bill? Ughhhh. Finally, we found a very nice couple who gave us a 20, 2-10’s and 2-5’s for our 50 Euro bill. Then I could put the 5 Euro into the baggage cart machine. And we were off to the races….or rather to the beginning of our terrible adventure.

I have to say it was one of my top ten worst travel experiences. Next up, was loading the luggage on the baggage cart and pushing it to the bus terminal to catch the bus to the train terminal. The train terminal was in the same airport but VERY far away. Now keep in mind, my mom was still being pushed by Varina (thank the Lord) and Indy was hobbling along in her walking boot and I was pushing the HUGE luggage cart.

Here they are with the luggage cart and that is Varina.

The bus finally arrived and I had to hand all of our luggage to Indiana who still has that broken foot. Then I get on the bus and Indy and I put it into the storage bins. We go two stops on the bus and then we have to unload our 6 bags, the girl in the boot (Indiana) and my mom in the wheelchair with Varina. LOL. And, our saga had just begun.

Time to share a score. Thank goodness this sold during our trials and tribulations because it certainly helped ease the pain! I took a best offer of about $150. Can’t remember exactly.

Click here to see this auction.

We found the ticket counter for the train to Heidelberg. I was under the impression that it was a direct train ride, but NO we would have to change trains in Manheim. Varina had to bid us adieu at this point (and she was the one who was holding us all together LOL). We tipped her 10 Euros. The train cost another 80 Euros and we waited to board the train to Manheim.

We had no clue what to do when the train arrived. We don’t speak any German and it was a madhouse. People were pushing and shoving to get on and there we were with 6 HUGE suitcases. My mom made it on and we told her to go and find a seat. Then Indy got on and I started loading the suitcases to her. There was no place to put them on the train.

I tried to put some of them in overhead bins but our luggage was heavy and oversized and it didn’t fit. My mom had found a seat, but apparently it was in a reserved section (no one had told us that you could buy reserved seats) and we didn’t have reserved seats.

Finally, a very nice couple who spoke English told us which seats were not reserved and where we could sit. We were scattered all over and I was sitting in the back on a jump seat with the luggage. My mom really needed to use the restroom so somehow she made it to the “water closet” walking through the aisles of a moving train. She was almost near tears when she went past me, so I had Indiana move up to my mom’s seat and we saved the closer seat for my mom.

Just then a steward came by selling wine by the glass and I bought one for my mom and one for myself. Boy did we both need a glass of wine. When my mom came back from the restroom, I helped her sit down and handed her the glass of wine. She looked stressed out and finally a bit relieved. We almost started crying thinking about the next transfer to the local train, but instead burst out laughing.

While we were laughing my mom sold this Venetian trade bead necklace (that she had paid $2 to acquire). She accepted a $100 offer. eBay always makes things look better!

Click here to see this auction.

Luckily, Indiana had made friends with the nice couple who spoke English, Simon and his wife Mika. They told us when to stand up for the Manheim exit (they were getting off also), where to wait with our luggage and even offered to help get it off the train and take it from track 4 to track 9 for the local train to Heidelberg, when we got to the stop.

We started talking more with them in the hallway waiting to exit the train and we found out that Simon had done a semester at UCSB. University of California Santa Barbara which is right up Highway 101 from Malibu and that is why his English was so perfect. He also knew exactly where Pepperdine was and understood that we were excited to see the Goose.

They were so kind! It was amazing. Here they are with my mom and Indy.

We made it safely onto the local train with the help of Simon & Mika! When we got off in Frankfurt we located a cab and we were on our way to the Hip Hotel to meet up with the Goose! Because of so much luggage that short cab ride to the Hip Hotel on the Hauptstraße cost us another $30 Euros.

So far our transfer from the Frankfurt airport to Heidelberg had cost us $120 Euros. In addition to the horrendous 5 transfers from planes, to buses, to trains to another train and to a final cab. Not an easy trip! But right outside the cab in front of the hotel was the GOOSE!!!

Mission of the entire trip was accomplished right then and there! It was great to see him and after we checked into the “Marrakesh” room at the Hip Hotel, he and Indy went off to check out the town, head back up to Moor Haus to grab dinner and make sure they were there in time for the Sunday night chapel where Houston was speaking.

Here is a fun piece from my brother’s collection that I sold for him during that terrible trip by plane, train, automobile and bus. If we could have just added horse drawn carriage to our journey it may have just pushed us all over the edge! LOL.

Click here to see this auction.

The Hip Hotel was amazing and has different themed rooms for many famous cities from around the world. Check out their web site here.

Ironically enough, on that website, one of the rooms that is prominently featured was ours! Check out this screen shot grab I got of our room. To the left is Indy’s part of the junior suite, in the center is our bathroom and to the right is the main bedroom. It was darling.

I took a photo of the ceiling of the main room that you can check out here.

Isn’t it amazing? The attention to detail was incredible and it was a bargain at about $170 US per night and located right on the Hauptstraße, one of the most darling shopping streets in the old city. It was also in between Houston’s house and his school. He would pass by it each day to and from school. Perfect!

After Mor Mor and I had a wonderful dinner at the Lowenbrau (a restaurant right next to the hotel), we were finally able to spend some time with Houston when he and Indy returned from their dinner.

Here is my Instagram post.

The next morning, Monday February 20th, Houston was taking Indy to school with him and she would shadow him for the next three days. We hardly saw either of them  but knew that they were having a blast.

Mor Mor and I headed out to walk the old town shopping street and find the Villeroy & Boch company store. What a treat! Here is the checkout area and you can just feel the German history and tradition when you are in that store.

I took a lot of pictures that day so that I could do some research and figure out what I could buy and resell on eBay. The one flatware set that really caught my eye was the hand hammered “blacksmith” pattern. Here is a link to it on

Here is a photo of the 68 Piece set (service for 12) that was priced at 749 pounds or approximately $933.81 in US dollars at the Heidelberg store.

The sales lady was really sweet and even took out a place setting to show me how lovely it was. I agreed!

However, after doing my research on, I found that I could buy that same set for about $671.88. I would not be making any money by buying in the German Villeroy & Boch store. BUMMER! MAJOR BUMMER!

But I did sell a bunch of this flatware back home on eBay for a lot of money. This pattern has been selling really well for me.

Click here to see this auction.

Right across the street from the Villeroy & Boch store, Mor Mor and I found a darling café for breakfast called the “Garten Café.” Here is a picture of us at breakfast.

Much later that day, we found out from Houston that his Pepperdine classrooms were located right above that very café. STRANGE but true. When we eventually toured his classrooms a few days later, we could look out from the stairwell and sun deck and see the garden that you see in that photo that is right behind me and my mom. WEIRD!

After lunch Mor Mor and I did more window shopping up and down the Hauptstraße. The store displays and window fronts were phenomenal. They really know how to make a great marketing statement and I took a lot of pictures and hope to recreate some of their themes in my new/old Cheryl Leaf Antiques that I am planning on reopening in Bellingham within the next year .

Here is one of the store window fronts that really caught my eye.

The boots that I had purchased for our trip were hurting my feet so I was wearing flip flops and it was about 45 degrees. I was freezing. We ducked into a cute shoe store and I began to browse for something that would cover my feet, but was reasonably priced. NOT even close. The shoes were priced at $100 and over. I finally asked if there was a clearance area and we were led clear around the store to a separate store front where I found some darling slip on clogs for $29. Sold!

Then my scarf was too thin to keep both my neck and head warm, so my mom and I started looking at hats. I ended up buying a cute black knit cap for $15 with a pom pom on the top that matches my hair color. It is hysterical because when I wear it, it almost looks like it is my hair popping out of the top. If….I only had that much hair. LOL.

Here I am with my mom in front of the old bridge in Heidelberg and you can see my crazy new hat.

As we were walking on the Hauptstraße we saw a lot of people carrying HUGE bags that said C and A. We decided that the C&A store must be having a sale and we should check them out. Turns out it was their annual clearance and many things were 75% off. SCORE!

I bought 2 pairs of jeans for $4 each . I will sell one on eBay and keep the other. I also got a darling warm black puffy jacket for $19. My mom bought a matching black puffy coat. Twinning…winning! We text the kids and told them to stop by the store on their way home and I would pay for their purchases.

Houston got two pairs of corduroy pants (so that he could imitate his idol Dr. Lerner), a really nice yellow hoodie and a heavy winter coat for only $29 TOTAL. Indiana also got a heavy winter coat, a new pair of jeans and an awesome black sporty turtleneck for $19. The heavy winter coat was $9. WOWZA!

Clothing sells really well on eBay and is one of my mom’s favorite niches. But, I do really well with clothing as well…mostly mens. Here is a recent Tommy Bahama score.

Click here to see this auction.

After Houston and Indy’s shopping spree we met up with them and we all went to dinner at one of Houston’s local favorite places…a pizza restaurant. Here is a crazy selfie (as only Houston can take) after we finished eating.

It was a fabulous first full day in Heidelberg and I am a fan .

The next day, Tuesday, February 21st, my mom and I spent most of the morning searching for second hand, thrift and antique stores on the internet. I made a list and when I showed it to Monica at the front desk, she said that there just are not any stores like that in Heidelberg. Please tell me, where do you buy antiques in Heidelberg? I had wasted most of the morning and it was time to head down the Hauptstraße to have lunch with the kids.

We met up with Houston and Indy for lunch in front of the Pepperdine Heidelberg Campus. We would grab a hasty lunch and then head back to the classrooms to tour them and meet some of the professors. The kids got soup and my mom and I opted for kabobs. Then it was up the two flights of stairs to the classrooms.

We FINALLY got a tour of the school. We met Catherine the head of the academic program and she raved about how much they all loved Houston. She told us that he was the SGA (Student Government Association) liason along with Gabby, who plan events in coordination with the Malibu campus. They had just planned a flamingo dancing excursion during the program’s group visit to Barcelona. Who knew? Way to go Goose! I couldn’t find a photo of them actually dancing the flamingo but I did find this post of his “crew” in Barcelona.

Then we walked into a classroom and there he was…the infamous Dr. Lerner. Houston’s favorite professor and a real comedian. I asked Dr. Lerner if I could get a photo of him with Houston and Indy and he said “only if you pay me.” I told him we were going to visit Krakow, Poland in the next few days and he said “instead of paying me, just leave Houston there PLEASE.” Dr. Lerner pretends to dislike certain kids and teases them non-stop. I take it as a sign of endearment. How can you not love the Goose?

Here are my kids with Dr. Lerner.

We met more Pepperdine students and saw the upper floors and all of the classrooms. It is a great place!

On our way back to the Hip Hotel, I sold this on eBay. Actually, I sold two of these. They were originally marked at $99.99 each and at ½ price they were about $50.00. I took a best offer of $25.00 each. Much better than donating. Right?

Click here to see this auction.

My 50% off sale on my old merchandise is working wonders for my February sales. We are currently sitting at about $14,236.48 for the past 30 days. A record February for sure! We are up 63% over last year. WOW! Thank God for Mo and Carmen minding the shop and shipping everything out . Thank you girls!

After school that day, Houston and Indy came by the Hip Hotel at about 3:30 and we all took a cab up to Moor Haus where the Pepperdine students live. It is in the shadow of the great castle (the Schloss) and has incredible views of the river and the city below.

Unfortunately, it is quite the hike for these students and once they get to the base of Moor Haus there are more stairs to navigate. Very reminiscent of Pepperdine…aka Stepperdine. Here are Houston and Indy in front of the gate to the house. Check out their new jackets ($9 each from C&A) and Houston’s new cords. NICE!

The steps were not easy for my mom. After a hip replacement last April and having a knee that also needs a joint replacement, stairs are not easy. I have to be honest, the stairs were getting to me as well and she has 30 years on me. She was an amazing trouper. It does astound me however, at how unfriendly Europe is for the handicapped. There are not many ramps, elevators or handicapped restrooms. It is definitely not a place for someone who has a hard time walking.

Here are my mom and Indy taking a break on the hike up from the gate to the Haus. Remember, Indy still has a broken foot!

The Haus was amazing. First we toured the dining area where Houston has a job putting out breakfast each morning. The room was amazing and showcased a photo of each of the different yearly groups from 1963 to present. Here is a photo of the four of us under the doorway.

We also toured the library, the computer room, and the living room. Check out Houston and Indy in the very fancy Living Room. You can see a bit of the library in the background. What an awesome experience to live in such a historically lovely building that has belonged to Pepperdine since 1963.

Finally we made the trek up a few levels of stairs to the Goose’s room that he shares with three others. What a mess! LOL.

Here is Houston showing Mor Mor his room. You can see Indy sitting on Houston’s bunk in the lower corner…but all you see is her broken foot and the boot .

As we were leaving, Herr Daugherty (aka Herr D) the head of the program came out to meet us and I got a great picture of him with my mom and kids.

He was super gracious and spent quite a bit of time with us. Herr D told us that he had been the director of the program for 26 years and that Houston was a blessing to have with them in Heidelberg. Thank goodness! All of the beautiful wood in the Moor Haus reminded me of these Taylor and Ng bowls that I sold recently. Can you believe that Taylor & Ng made wooden salad bowls? I think I got close to $80 for the three of them. Yes, that is right.

Click here to see this auction.

As you saw previously, Houston’s room was a total mess so Indy promised to come back and help straighten up his clothing after Mor Mor, Indy and I left to tour the Castle while Houston studied for his Psychology midterm that was taking place the next day.

Off we went to the Schloss Castle. We got there to find that the last tour had already departed. DARN IT! All we could do was purchase general admission tickets (which would also include a ride down the hill on the venicular on the last car at 5:40 PM).

We did get to see some of the grounds. Indy and I took a funny selfie with the river behind us and I also got a picture of her in front of the largest wine barrel in the world.

After the castle semi-tour we bid goodbye to Indy and she walked back to Moor Haus to clean up Houston’s room. Thank goodness someone wanted to tackle that mess! Mor Mor and I headed to the venicular station to hitch a ride down the hill. We had plans to eat at the Irish Pub right down from the Hip Hotel.

We had a very interesting ride on the cable car/tram aka venicular that hugs the hill and at the base began our walk down to the Irish Pub.

We had a great dinner and I recently sold something Irish for quite a good deal of money.

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It is the Claddagh which I LOVE and have incorporated into my eBay with heart logo. I am 1/16 Scotch-Irish you know!

But back to all the walking. Later that night, after Indy cleaned up Houston’s room, he sent Indy home to the Hip Hotel down the long winding hill all by herself. It was about 11 pm and I begged him to walk with her or put her in a taxi which I would have gladly paid for…but no, he said “Heidelberg is one of the safest cities in Europe” and that she would be “fine.” I am sorry but with everything going on in the world, I thought it was a terrible idea and stayed up late to make sure she arrived safely back at the hotel.

It was just a few short days later that there was a terrible car incident when a 35 year old man drove a car into a crosswalk quite near where we were staying and one man died. Let this be a lesson to everyone, that you should always travel in pairs or utilize other safety measures.

The good news, Indiana did leave Houston with a much cleaner closet. Here is a picture.

Speaking of clothing and closets….I brought 85 I sell sheets with me to list from Europe. 90% were of clothing that my mom had written up for me and I had photographed before leaving California. Here is a sweatshirt that I originally started at $39.99, but once Manchester United won the Championship I raised my starting bid price to $99.99. Why not?

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The next morning, Wednesday, the 22nd, Indy, my mom and I decided to take the one hour city tour by bus. It was a very fun tour and we enjoyed it immensely. After the tour we went back to hang out at the hotel and Indiana joined Houston for his afternoon round of classes.

She had to miss 4 days of school for our 12 day holiday and I explained to Xavier (her high school) that those days should be excused because it was for a college visit. That was way too true! That poor kid even took notes in Houston’s classes. What a scholar!

That night we would be hosting Houston and four of his friends for dinner at the Schnitzel Haus. It was truly a highpoint of our Heidelberg visit. Houston had invited Riley, Logan, Alec and Noelle. Indy and I knew Noelle from his Freshman year on the Malibu Campus so it was great to see her. We had the best server, Yanina, and she took lots of photos for us. Here are a few of my favorites.

After dinner, Mor Mor and I took a cab back to the hotel and Houston and Indy walked back to the Hip Hotel.

The next morning we got up early to walk to the old bridge and take some photos over the river. We had to check out of the hotel at 1 pm and ate lunch/dinner in the hotel pub while waiting for our taxi to arrive at 5 pm to take us to the Frankfurt airport where the four of us, me, my mom, Indy and the Goose would be flying to Krakow.

After our nightmare arrival process to Heidelberg….remember planes, buses, trains and taxis, that cost $120 pounds for three of us, we made the decision to take a private taxi directly to the Frankfurt airport. The private taxi was $170 pounds and once we had all settled into the luxury leather seats of the Mercedes, we all immediately fell asleep. 70 minutes later we had pulled up to our departure terminal and not one of us remembered anything about the journey. That is a the sign of a successful transfer between cities. NO BAD MEMORIES!

Here is a final score before I start writing the next part of my travelogue about our journey to Poland and our wonderful time in Krakow. Talk to you soon!

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By the way, I picked this final score because in Europe (especially Heidelberg and most of Germany it is Christmas year-round). There are some wonderful Christmas shops and this was an ornament that we used to carry in our antiques/gift shop where it was also Christmas year-round.

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.

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