What to do with baby’s old clothes: Resale Store

What it is: A resale store is different to that of a consignment store in that they are able to offer cash (or store credit) outright for any clothes that they offer to take.

Racks of childrens clothes

How it works: You do not need to make an appointment to visit a store and have your clothes looked at. Staff will review your items on the spot and you can wander round the store while they review your items, or you can wait up front while they go through whatever you bring in. Buyers will then pick out the items and make an offer on these based on the style, condition and the current stock levels in-store. If you accept the offer you will receive either cash or store credit. As a general rule for all resale stores, clothes over five years old will not be accepted. Typically, clothing with any holes, fading or pilling will not be considered. Below are some of the child-specific resale stores in the Durham region:

Pros: This option is perfect for moms that don’t want the hassle of selling their old baby clothes themselves. You’ll be saving time as it only takes one interaction with a store (not multiple interactions with sellers like you would get with Kijiji or Facebook buy/sell groups) and you are compensated immediately. You do not need to make an appointment to have your clothes reviewed by a buyer, so you’ll be selling on your own schedule.

Cons: Stores will pick and choose what items they want to take based on the kind of brands you have, what’s in style, and what stock they currently need. You will most likely be out of luck if you want to offload summer items at the beginning of winter. Not all stores will take certain items like socks or cloth diapers, so you may need to visit a few resale stores to get rid of everything or offload your remaining stuff another way. To save the most amount of time when you visit a resale store, you will have to prepare your clothes for easy sorting in advance. This includes sorting clothes by brand or by age group.

Value Rating: 2 out of 3. Your potential for cash is very low than if you were to sell the items yourself or take them to a consignment store, but if you value the time saved managing the sales on your own, then this is the option for you.

Cost: There is no cost involved to bring your clothes to a clothing resale store.

 

pic via brendawritesablog.com

What to do with baby’s old clothes: VarageSale.com

What it is: VarageSale.com is an online an online marketplace similar to Kijiji.ca and Craigslist with more of a community feel. It has the trustworthy elements that you’d expect to find in an eBay listing (i.e. seller reviews and profiles) and social elements of what you’d expect to find in a Facebook buy and sell group (strict rules on group/posting behaviour, moderation and the ability to start discussions with members).

How it works: All users (both buyers and sellers) must use their Facebook account to use the service. Once you have logged in and set your location, a list of Buy/Sell groups are displayed, and you can choose which areas nearby you would like to sell to. An organizer within this group will then review your request to join the group. Once you’re approved, you’ll see that listings are posted in a timeline much like you would see on Facebook. Users can rate each other based on how each person follows through on a sale, and these ratings are made public for other group members to view. Buyers are able to like and watch listings depending on their interest in an item, and these Like and Watch numbers will be shown publicly within the group. As a seller, your profile will have a summary displaying all items that you are currently selling. Buyers also have the ability to follow your profile to keep updated for future items that you list for sale.

Listing your items on VarageSale takes only three easy steps

Listing your items for sale with VarageSale couldn’t be easier with only three steps in this form

Pros: More personalized and secure than options like Kijiji.ca and Craigslist. This site comes with a set of rules for each community, similar to that of a Facebook buy and sell group. It’s a step up in terms of navigation compared to that of a Facebook buy/sell group, so in theory you’ll get more eyes on your items this way. This app or website (depending on how you use Varagesale) will walk you through every step of listing your items, making it easy to get over any feelings of procrastination when it comes to selling your stuff.

Cons: It’s yet another social media site to join / or app to download. It does a lot of the same things that a Facebook buy/sell group does with the exception of having a better browse and search function.

Value Potential: 2 out of 3. The mechanics of this community encourages buyers to interact with you more if they like the type of items that you sell. Listing your items is fast so you won’t lose too much time and you get control over pricing your items.

Cost: There are no costs involved with using VarageSale.com.

What to do with baby’s old clothes: Facebook Buy, Sell and Swap groups

What it is: There are multiple groups in the Durham area that have been created solely for parents that are looking to buy, sell and swap items that they no longer need. Items range from household items to furniture to baby clothes.

How it works: Locate and join the relevant Facebook groups and familiarize yourself with the rules for each group. Each group will have their own rules for how to post your listing so be sure to check this out too. Once you are satisfied with the photos that you have taken for your listing, upload the photos to a post within the group and include any information that you find relevant for potential buyers. Sizing, clothing condition, brand and asking price are all important to buyers.

Sample Baby Outfit Listing in the Facebook Buy Sell and Swap groups

As a general guide most Facebook listings will look something like this

Below is a list of all the Facebook classified groups for the Durham region:

Pros: You’re able to manage all interactions with buyers through Facebook. This is handy if you have the Facebook app installed on your phone so you can respond to any questions wherever you are. Interacting with someone else over Facebook is also great for security – being able to see someone else’s photo and profile helps screen sellers to make sure that they are legit.

Cons: The number of notifications you receive might bother you, selling through your account may be uncomfortable for those of you that like privacy, any posts you make on the group timeline will get pushed down (out of view) by other people in the group that post.

Value Potential: 2 out of 3. Time is an investment here. You may have to interact with multiple potential buyers asking questions about your items, also consider how much time you have to meet up with buyers to check out whatever you sell. The money you can potentially get for the clothes is high (compared to what you’d get in consignment or resale stores) if you find the right buyer, but it may take time to find this person.

Cost: Listing within these groups is free.

Shop for fresh produce indoors at the Uxbridge Farmers Market

I always miss visiting farmers markets when the change of season rolls around. It’s a great reason to get out of the house and pick up some local produce to whiz up in the blender for baby food. Thankfully, the Uxbridge Farmers Market will be reviving their market one last time before the winter hits with their Indoor Christmas Market, this Sunday, November 23rd.

The Uxbridge Indoor Christmas Market Poster

 

The Uxbridge Indoor Christmas Market will be held at the Uxbridge Arena (291 Brock Street West, Uxbridge) from 10am-2pm on Sunday, November 23rd.

Cost: Entry to the market is free!

How to manage a baby meltdown when you’re not at home

Ah, we’ve all been there at some point with baby meltdowns. There comes a time when the cries begin to sound like requests rather than just noise. This is when you begin to hit your stride as a mom and realize you know your little one best. When a baby meltdown hits, I like being home to have everything I need handy. Nursing pillow is always near, there are lots of places to lay down for quiet time, and even a roomful of toys in case baby boredom has struck. But being out of the house with a meltdown on my hands? That takes a special kind of resourcefulness that only a mom can understand.

A baby crying

It takes time to build up the confidence to leave the house for any period of time with baby, especially as you’re learning that perfect mix of items to keep in your diaper bag to help you while you’re out. Here are a few strategies that I’ve learned from my many meltdowns so far:

  • Scan the area for a sympathetic face. If you’re somewhere public like a supermarket or shopping centre, someone will be empathizing with what you’re going through. See if your baby is interested in interacting with this person. The change in energy can lighten the mood for both baby and you.
  • Show baby an item they haven’t seen before. I bring toys with me for baby wherever I go but sometimes even this doesn’t work in my favour. There are usually plenty of items available out of the house for baby to see which always ends up being far more interesting than what I bring along. These don’t need to be other toys either – A kitchen spatula at a department store or a bright red fire extinguisher may catch the attention of those curious little eyes.
  • Consider removing or adding a piece of clothing. If baby is hot, then loosening a onesie or popping open a few buttons on a sleeper can help cool them down. If baby is cold and you don’t have extra layers on hand, consider using a sweater or shirt of your own to drape over them.
  • Find a quiet area to recharge. Overstimulation is tough on a little baby, and what calms them down will depend a lot on their little personality. Public washrooms may seem like a good idea but I’ve found that the loud sounds in a washroom (hand dryers, multiple toilets flushing) can be disruptive. Instead, ask an employee to direct you to a quiet area in a store or venue so that you can be alone with your little one and give them time to calm down.

What are some of your strategies for baby meltdowns? I’d love to hear what’s worked for you in the comments below.

 

pic via earlyinterventionsupport.com

Drop-in family storytime at the Whitby Library (Rossland Branch)

Depending on the local library branch that you visit in Durham, drop-in storytime programs can get chaotic due to their popularity. Some babies do well in social and busy environments, but for those that prefer a more quiet and intimate group experience, a smaller location like the Whitby Library on Rossland Road may be a better fit.

The area where storytime at the Whitby library, Rossland Branch, takes place

Family Storytime is held in the back corner of this branch in the children’s book section, where parents and caregivers can sit with their little one on the mat to listen to stories read by one of the librarians. Librarians will read stories from the library collection and have parents and children interact by answering questions about illustrations. After a book is read, any children that are willing are encouraged to join in with singing songs or playing activities like rolling a ball to other members in the group.

Drop-in Family Storytime is held at the Whitby Library, Rossland Branch (701 Rossland Road East, Whitby) on Fridays from 10.30-11am. This program will continue weekly from now until Friday, December 12th. Registration is not required. Children and babies of all ages are welcome.

Cost: Free.

 

To find out more, visit the Whitby Library event page for details.

Take time out for you with a comfort food cooking class

Whether we like to admit it or not, all of us need time to ourselves during the first year with baby. It’s exhausting being on all day for our families, no matter what our circumstances.  If you find yourself forgetting what it was like to have some fun on your own, now is the time to try something new. Focus on just getting out of the house alone (gasp!) and doing something just for you.

A woman chops carrots on a chopping board

For any moms that love to cook or perhaps want to try some new recipes with the help of an instructor, there is an upcoming President’s Choice Cooking Class that may be for you. The focus of the class will be to make comfort food meals using Fall ingredients – Dishes include Braised Beef Short Ribs, Arugula and Celery Root Remoulade and Apple Cinnamon Beignets. The class is taught by a chef who also teaches at the George Brown Chef School, so if you have any desire to continue developing your culinary knowledge, the chef should be able to tell you more about her program.

The President’s Choice Cooking Class, Upscale Comfort Food for a Cold Night with Chef Harrison, will be held Wednesday, November 12th from 6.30-8.30pm  at the Ajax Superstore location (30 Kingston Road West, Ajax)

Cost: This class is $35 + tax, per person.

 

For more information, visit the PC Cooking School website for details.

pic via meetup.com