I'm a diehard thrifter and garage sale addict! I love the thrill of the hunt! And I love making CASH from trash so I also resell on eBay and Etsy. I share my successes to inspire you ... and my failures so you learn from my mistakes. Please join me on this wild and crazy ride of making cash from trash!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

2011 Year-End Review

Hope 2012 has been treating you well.  I can’t believe I haven’t posted for two months!  I hope ya’ll didn’t think I dropped off the face of the earth. I didn’t intend to take such a long break, but a few things happened that made me a little bummed out.  I just needed some time to get my mojo back. 


First, DS#1 told us he was not coming back when he graduates in May as he’s decided to continue living in the San Francisco-Berkeley area.   He came home for the holidays; but when he left, he took all his “stuff”.  This was not unexpected, but it still made me a little sad.  Anyway, his old bedroom is now my new eBay room!

Then, just before the end of 2011, I was diagnosed with diabetes.  Major bummer and not a good way to start the new year.  Luckily, I don’t need to take any medication for now and am trying to control my sugar with diet and exercise.

A few weeks ago I bought a new computer and had to transfer my files and data from the old one.  I used an external hard drive to do this.  Unfortunately, I decided to REMOVE everything from the old computer BEFORE I’d transferred it to the new computer.  Can you guess what happened?  The external drive CRASHED before I could do anything.  All my files, pictures, documents, data was gone forever!  I did take it to a computer geek but it would have cost too much to recover the data. 

I lost all my eBay data.  Hours and hours of work gone!  All my historical data since 1998 gone.  Anyway, no point in crying over spilled milk.  When I think of everything the folks in Japan and New Orleans lost, I realize I am blessed. So it’s time to get back on track.  

Even though I lost my eBay data, I was able to retrieve some data from eBay and PayPal.  And here's the breakdown for 2011:

Gross Revenue: $28,260

Expenses: $14,952

Net Revenue: $13,308 (or $1,109/month)

Net Profit Margin: 47%

Number of sales: 1539

Average revenue/item: $18.36

My gross receipts were triple what they were in 2010, but my NPM is still low.  Although I sold more in 2011, my expenses are still too high at 53%.  My COGS is at 9% but my biggest expense is shipping -- a whopping 27%.  My goals for 2011 remain the same as they were for 2010, mainly decrease costs where I can.  I'll just keep on trucking and hope for the best for 2012!

Hope your sales have been jumping!  I thought January would be a slow month, but I was happy to see that sales have been strong.  I took advantage of eBay’s recent promotion of free auction-style listings, and have been busy listing, listing, listing.

I haven’t been shopping since December since I still have bags and bags of items to list.  But I finally made it back to my SA store a couple of weeks ago and was not happy to see that they raised their prices for Rag Day.  Clothes are now $3 (instead of $2) and pants are now $2 (instead of $1) – bah humbug!

I’ll be back next week with  highlights of my recent sales.  Wishing you all a great weekend filled with wonderful thrifty finds!


  1. What does the saling in your header mean? Is it a typo?

  2. Glad to see you are back. I missed your posts. I still smile when I think about your kilt sales! Keep up the good work. Sorry about your bummer news!

  3. Glad to see you're back! My dad controls his diabetes with diet and he's doing great. Bummer about the computer but you seem to have a good outlook on dealing with the loss of all that data.

  4. Anonymous: "Saling" is a term my BFF and I coined for when we want to go to garage and yard sales. From the word "sale", we say we go "saling". It's a play on words: saling vs. sailing.

  5. Hey - did you try the free Pandora recovery tool to *undelete* from the old computer. Download from download.com and follow the directions. Pretty easy!

  6. Thanks for explaining. I was stumped.

  7. SOOO GLAD you are back - and YES, I did think you dropped off the face of the earth....or dropped dead somewhere thrifting and had yet to be found!! I'm with Jo Marie - I love telling about your kilt find (when I'm telling some of my own ebay story sales!). Sorry to hear of the diabetes - but will be cheering your on to get yourself back into shape with good exercise and diet! Anyways....we'll be looking forward to your future posts!!

  8. Glad to see you are back! I missed your posts! :)

  9. SUPER HAPPY YOU'RE BACK!!!! Sorry about the D word. :(

    Isn't shopping excersize???? :)

  10. Glad to see you back. Your blog is inspiring!

  11. Welcome back! I'm sorry to hear about all the bad news, but I am glad that you haven't lost your positive attitude. Really looking forward to future post, take care!

  12. Uh-oh! Sorry to hear about your files! That’s a story that way too many people can relate to, I’m sure. Might I suggest a different solution for the next time that you need to transfer files “wholesale” from one computer to another? External hard drives are handy because they’re portable, but as with any hard drive, overloading it with work can cause it to crash. There are other solutions for file transfer that wouldn’t involve an external hard drive, therefore lessening the risk of losing the data forever. There are cable and networking solutions that can save you a lot of time and heartbreak next time you need to transfer all the files from one computer to another.

  13. Good point, Lance. Cables and other networking solutions can be a way to easily transfer your files from one device to another. But having an external hard drive wouldn’t hurt too. It can help you back up your files along with your PC and devices.