Back To Our Regularly Scheduled Program

    I don’t know about you but it feels like forever since I’ve posted some of my eBay sales.  I’ve had some great finds recently and  I’m excited to finally be able to share some of them with you.  But before I do, I just wanted to send out a big THANK YOU to all of you who made the release of the Reseller Guide 5.0 such a huge success!!

    I’m very proud/excited/elated about all the new content I added, and all the positive feedback I received (from first-time readers as well as those who received their free update) made all those looooong hours in front of the computer time well spent!

    So again:  Thank you so much!!

    Making The Time

    Make TimeWhen it comes to reselling on eBay, a big part of being successful is just showing up at the thrift stores and giving yourself a chance.

    I know that we’re all very busy with our daily errands and, in my experience, it’s not about having the time to make these visits, it’s about MAKING THE TIME!

    Between answering questions, sending out free updates to previous owners, and all the twist and turns of the day, it suffices to say that I was extremely busy during the release of the updated guide.

    I could’ve easily just stopped going to the thrift store but I still made the time to visit a few stores each day and I was rewarded with some great finds!

    Thanks again for all your support and I hope you’re having a safe and exciting Halloween!

    Talk to you soon,

    Meinard

    Finds of the Week

    John Deere Hoodie

    Deere

    Item Cost:  $6.99

    Winning Bid:  $31.00

    Nike LeBron James

    IX

    Item cost:  $6.99

    Winning Bid:  $49.99

     Nike Women’s Running Shoes

    shox

    Item Cost:  $4.99

    Winning Bid:  $49.99

     Reebok Allen Iverson

    (It can’t ALL be about Nike’s and Air Jordan’s!)

    Reebok

    Item Cost:  $6.99

    BIN:  $79.99

My 3-Day Win

Roller coaster2Reselling thrift store items on eBay can be a roller-coaster ride sometimes:  some days you’re barely making any sales while other days it seems like you’re invincible!

Thankfully, these past few days have been on the “invincible” side for me.  I’ve had some amazing sales and hopefully this streak will continue!

It’s looking like the decision to only use Buy-It-Now auctions for Air Jordan’s and other Nike’s was the correct choice.  To be honest, I do miss the thrill of the bidding war and watching the auction price climb higher and higher.  However, it’s also great not having to deal with non-paying bidders anymore and, in the long run, having that peace-of-mind is worth more than the thrill of a bidding war.

Oh, and I also sold another costume hoodie…and it’s the most successful one so far!  Check it out at the very bottom!

The Thrift Store Reseller Guide:  Update

I’m also happy to announce that I’m currently working on an exciting content update for the Thrift Store Reseller Guide.  When I first started working on it, I thought it would only take a week to complete but it’s turning out to be THE BIGGEST UPDATE so far!

How big?  Well, it’s easily over a 100-pages now…and I’m not even finished yet!

I’ll be providing a more detailed update of what you can expect with this update in the next few days.  Stay tuned!

Hope you’re having a great weekend and good luck at the thrift stores!

(The following sales occurred between October 17-19)

Finds of the Week

Vintage Chicago Bulls Shorts

bulls shorts

Item Cost:  $2.99

BIN Price:  $39.99

Vintage Nike Trainers

Deion

Item Cost:  $6.99

BIN Price:  $49.99

Vintage Youth Air Jordan

Oreo Youth

Item Cost:  $2.99

BIN Price:  $79.99

Another Costume Hoodie

Star Wars Costume Hoodie

I found this hoodie right next to the Darth Maul costume hoodie that I mentioned in my previous post, I’m guessing it’s from the same owner.  I was thinking of leaving this jacket behind because, unlike the Darth Maul and Deadpool versions, this hoodie doesn’t zip all the way to the top – it’s a standard hoodie.  But I decided to give it a shot because it was a good price and I know how fanatical Star Wars fans can get.

I actually had to open an unpaid item case against this buyer and I was certain he wasn’t going to pay anymore until, lo and behold, the payment finally arrived on the 8th and final day (the day I was going to officially close the case).  Luckily I waited just a little bit longer!

Embroidered

Item cost:  $6.99

BIN Price:  $101.00

Halloween Hoodies and A Very Rare Find

Halloween is approximately two weeks away so now is the best time to start cashing in on any costumes that you find at the thrift stores.  I’m not sure if these items qualify as costumes but I’m guessing that the reason why they sold so quickly (and for a great price) is because Halloween is right around the corner.

I am, of course, talking about the recent mask hoodies that I’ve found at Savers and Salvation Army.  Whoever came up with this idea is a genius!

They look like your traditional hoodie except the zipper connects all the way to the top to cover your entire head.  A character’s face is split in half – one on each side of the hoodie – and it forms a complete mask when the zipper is pulled to the top.

These hoodies are really awesome and I really wish that I could’ve kept both of them, but the potential profit was just too much to pass up.

Here’s the first one that I sold.  This was a Darth Maul hoodie from Savers, sold for $79.99!!

Darth Maul:  The Character

Darth Maul Actor

The Hoodie

Darth Maul

This is the most recent mask hoodie that I found.  Deadpool is a Marvel character, most recently played by Ryan Reynolds in Wolverine:  The Origins.  I sold this hoodie for $49.99!

Deadpool:  The Character

Deadpool

 The Hoodie

20131016-172315.jpg

Yes, that’s me wearing the hoodie.  I remember flashing a smile for this photo, too.  Why Meinard?!

Anyways, I made the mistake of not taking a picture of me with the Darth Maul jacket before shipping it out and there was no way I was going to make the same mistake with this one.  I no longer have this hoodie but at least I have a picture with it.  Damn I miss this hoodie!

A Rare Find

A few days ago I came across a brand that I consider to be one of the most elusive.  I can probably count on one hand the number of times I’ve found this brand so you can understand why I was really excited when I saw it hanging on the rack.  Here’s the logo of the item:

logo2

Those of you who signed up for my Free 2-Week Mini-Course are familiar with this brand and understand why I’m so excited to have found this item.  The auction is currently live and I can’t wait to share the results as soon as the auction ends and payment is received!

Savers is open for another few hours so I’m on way to check out what’s available.  I was able to find some great Nike’s and Air Jordan’s at Goodwill earlier today so hopefully that luck will continue tonight.

I hope you’re having a great week so far and good luck at the thrift stores!

Meinard

Air Jordan’s: The Gift & The Curse

As I mentioned in my previous posts, my goal of earning $10,000 a month in eBay sales is going to be a learning process and there are going to be several adjustments in my strategy as the months roll by.  Well, it’s been a little over a month but I’ve already made one tweak in my strategy and it involves a thrift store brand that I hold near-and-dear to my heart:  Air Jordan’s!

“The Gift”

First, the good stuff about the brand.

The demand for this brand is enormous! I understand that “enormous” might be a relative term so I’ll add some numbers to that.  Here are some recent stats from Forbes:

  • Air Jordan makes 1.75 BILLION globally.
  • It controls 58% of the US basketball shoe market;  Nike, which is actually the parent company, is second in the US with 34% market share.
  • Lebron James is the top-selling, active NBA player and Air Jordan still outsold his sneakers 6 to 1.

Need a visual?  Check out this video:

The message here is clear:  Michael Jordan may have retired from the game but his brand is stronger than ever!  And if you’re not selling Air Jordan’s that you find at the thrift stores- and that includes his apparel as well as his sneakers – then you really are missing out on some of the best and easiest (I write this word hesitantly and I’ll explain why in a second) sales that you will ever make.

There’s really no need to convince our consumers when it comes to selling a pair of Air Jordan’s, they already know they want it.  The challenge for us is to get these products at a decent price (are you listening Savers?) so we can take advantage of this juggernaut of a market.

“The Curse”

And now, to the not-so-good stuff.

ComputerAir Jordan is still, hands down, one of the best brands to sell on eBay but there is one aspect that I’m not so thrilled about when it comes to selling this brand: the non-paying bidders!  I don’t know if you have the same experience, but this brand can sometimes be a headache when you use the auction-format.  The auction-format plays a major part in my current strategy but its biggest drawback is that it doesn’t require immediate payment after the auction ends.  This excruciatingly painful part is the reason why some Air Jordan auctions are left unpaid.

I will say that the vast majority of buyers on eBay are serious about their bids but it only takes one person to ruin an auction.  Unfortunately, when it comes to Air Jordan’s using the auction-format, more often than not these are the individuals who are placing the winning bid.

How We Can Fight Back

As frustrating as they can be, am I going to let a few bad buyers stop me from selling this brand?

Not a chance!  Air Jordan’s are way too profitable!

I am, however, going to change my strategy to deal with them because these unpaid items have got to stop.  They take up way too much time and too much of my patience.  So from now on I am going to BIN auctions with immediate payments for ALL the Air Jordan shoes that I sell.  This change in strategy will also apply to Air Jordan apparel and other marquee products such as Lebron James and Kobe Bryant shoes.

Here are some recent successful BIN auctions:

Air Jordan Youth

Spizike Miami

Item cost:  $2.99

BIN:  $49.99

Air Jordan Hoodie

Elephant

Item Cost:  $6.99

BIN:  $24.99

(This particular jacket is actually worth a lot more but the zipper was broken and it’s stuck at the top.  Still a decent sale though.)

Air Jordan Retro

Navy

Item cost:  $9.99

Winning Bid:  $49.99

Women’s Air Jordan

Coral

Item cost:  $6.99

BIN:  $65.00

Interested in selling Air Jordan’s from your local thrift stores?  Check out my Thrift Store Reseller Guide for an easy, step-by-step guide to finding and selling these valuable items on eBay!

The last pair of Air Jordan’s that I sold using the auction format recently ended and it only served to justify the switch to a BIN format.  This buyer contacted me the 3rd day after the auction ended to inform me that he’s going to need an additional week and half to send the payment.  A week and a half!!

I don’t know why I said yes to this request but I did, and now I’m playing the waiting game.  It’s not like his feedback score is comforting either – he has 3 positive feedbacks and one of them is actually a negative one which states that he never paid for an item.

I’m not holding my breath…

Hope you have an amazing weekend!

Meinard

A Word of Thanks plus A Good Start

It’s been an amazing past few days of eBay sales and I’ve been looking forward – now that I finally have a break from listing and packing – to sharing some of my recent thrift store finds.  So far, one of my major obstacles have been consistency.  There are days when I would reach my goal of $300+ in sales per day and then there are days where I would be lucky to make $50.  Regardless of the mixed results, those $300+ days are enough proof for me that my goal is achievable.

Before I share some of my recent sales, I just want to say THANK YOU SO MUCH for the support I’ve received.  As I quickly (and abruptly) discovered, this is not an easy goal but your advice and words of encouragement have really have really made a difference, especially during those times when my focus and motivation starts to wane.

Again, thank you so much and I hope you enjoy this week’s sales!

Finds of the Week

Youth Michael Jordan Washington Wizards Jersey

MJWizards

Item cost:  $2.99

Winning Bid:  $31.00

Nike Running Shoes

Air Max Orange

Item cost:  $6.99

Winning Bid:  $34.00

Polo Ralph Lauren Boots

Hamlin

Item Cost:  $9.99

Winning Bid:  $36.20

Star Wars Darth Maul Hoodie

Darth Maul

Item Cost:  $6.99

Buy-it-Now:  $79.99

This jacket was really cool!  The zipper extends to the top of the jacket where – when fully zipped –  it eventually forms the face of Darth Maul, a Star Wars character.  You can see through the eyes and there are slits for your nose and mouth so you can breath easily even when the mask is on.

I bought it because I thought it was cool looking and could potentially be my Halloween costume for this  year.  That was until I discovered how much this hoodie was going for.  A brand new one sold for over $200 so I was confident that I could sell it for this price.  It sold in one day!

 

$10,000 a Month in Sales: By The Numbers

Goal StairsI’ve always been a goal-oriented person. If I’m honest with myself, I’ve generally happier when I have a goal or task that I’m working towards – I’m not content to “just go with the flow” so to speak. This applies thrift store reselling as well.

(Please note that I use the term “sales” to mean the final ending auction value only. I am not including the shipping cost in these numbers. There also other factors to consider such as cost of goods, eBay fees, Paypal fees, and cost of materials, all of which will affect the bottom line.)

Some of you may recall that about a year ago I made it a goal of mine to reach $4,000 in sales for a month. This was exciting for me because, until then, I was averaging about $2,000-$2,500 per month in sales. These are decent numbers and definitely nothing to be ashamed about, but I wanted to challenge myself and $4,000 seems like a good number to work towards.

I remember being excited by this challenge and I remember how proud I was to achieve this goal last year. But after accomplishing it, I sort of just stopped and since then I’ve just been going with the flow. I was almost shocked that I achieved it so quickly and I realized that I may have set the bar to low.

I wanted to get motivated again and I knew that I needed another goal to strive towards – something extreme and that’s when the number $10,000 a month popped into my head! This happened before my trip last month and I knew that it would require some massive action on my part, which made it even more imperative that I recharge during my trip to Europe.

By the Numbers: My Plan of Attack

Goals Quote

So how exactly do I plan to achieve this monumental task? I remember writing down “$10,000 a month” on a notepad and feeling almost overwhelmed by that number; after all, I’ve never even come close to reaching that number before.

After a few anxious minutes, I calmed down, began to crunch some numbers, and I actually started to have some hope that this was actually achievable.

It can be overwhelming if you concentrate only on “$10,000 a month”, but it becomes less scary if you break it down into smaller, more manageable task.

Here’s what I came up with:

1. $10,000 / 30 (days in a month) = $333.33 per day (already sounding better)

2. $333.33 / $30 (the average sale price of my items) = 11 (the number of items that I need to sell in a day to reach $333.33, based on my average sell price).

Note: Sign up for eBay’s FREE Sales Report to get your own average selling price.

So that’s been my focus ever since I returned from my trip: every day, I need to find and list at least 11 items that I’m confident will sell for at least $30.  I hinted this in my previous Finds of the Week post, but I’ve decided to use more auction-style listings as oppose to the Buy-It-Now (BIN) format.  I’m using the BIN format for Nike’s, Air Jordan’s and Ralph Lauren items, but 90-95% of my items have a starting bid of $24.99.

I opted to use auction-style listings because I like the fact that it has a definite ending day (7 days).  If I list items every day, then eventually I’ll be in a situation where auctions are also ending every day and I’ll be receiving payments on a daily basis (assuming buyers are on their best behavior and pay like they’re suppose to, of course).

So far this has been the case.  I didn’t receive any payments during the first week (since the first batch of auction needed 7 days to complete), but since then I’ve been getting paid on a daily basis (anywhere between $50-$300) and it’s a great feeling to have something coming in on a daily basis!

It’s still a difficult task no matter how you look at it but, for me, breaking the $10,000 monthly goal down into this manageable, daily task feels a heck of a lot better.

First Impressions

I’ve been executing this strategy for the past three weeks and there are already a couple things worth mentioning:

1.  Understatement-of-the-Year Alert:  This. Is. Not. Easy!

2.  Between finding these items, listing them on eBay, and packing them for delivery, trying to make $10,000 a month in sales takes a lot of time.

3. I’m not going to find 11 item every day – some days are definitely better than others.

4.  This challenge/goal has got me motivated again and it’s just what I needed!

5.  The first week is the hardest because it takes 7 days for the first batch of auctions to complete.  If you go to the thrift stores everyday during that first week, then you could be in the red before you finally start to see some payments arrive.  Stick with it, though.  After the first week, you’ll start having payments arrive on a daily basis and it’ll be worth the torture!

These are important things to consider and I’m sure I’ll eventually have to alter and tweak my strategy moving forward.  Like I said, I’m not going to find 11 items everyday but I’m hoping that several of the items that I do find will sell over my average selling price to offset the unsold items.

Like these items for instance:

Polo Ralph Lauren Jacket

polousopen

Sold for $47.00

Air Jordan Dub Zero

Dub Zero

Sold for $49.99

Donald Pliner Boots

Pliner

Sold for $63.59

Not Afraid

smart-goals1

I’ll be honest, there’s a part of me that thinks that $10,000 a month may be a bit of a stretch but I’m not afraid to try and I’m not going to back down from it either.  In the mean time, I’m going to continue to visit as many thrift stores as I possibly can and see what happens.

Regardless of the results, this challenge has given me a daily goal to strive towards and, as I mentioned in the beginning, I’m the happiest when I’m working towards a goal.  I’ve been having a blast so far!

Good luck at the thrift stores and I hope you have a great weekend!

-Meinard

Thrift Store Items You Can Resell on eBay (9/23/2013)

    Hi and welcome to the September 23, 2013  edition of Thrift Store Items You Can Resell on eBay!

    Each week I’ll post several pics of thrift store items that I’ve recently sold on eBay, as well as share with you the profits that I’ve made for that item.

    A Change In Strategy

    As I continue to share my thrift store finds, one of the things that you will notice is that the number of Buy-It-Now (BIN) auctions I use will become less frequent and I’ll be relying more and more on the auction-format.  I still plan to use the BIN format for items that have a notorious history (for me, anyway) of non-paying bidders - such as Nike, Air Jordan, and Polo Ralph Lauren – but the majority of my item will now be listed as an auction with a $24.99 starting price.

    Why the change?

    Prior to my trip, the majority of my listings were BIN auctions and, while I’m still a huge fan of them, the switch to standard auctions is a necessary part of my new strategy moving forward.  My new set of goals -which I’ll go into more details about in the next post – is ambitious but I love the challenge and I’ve been attacking it ever since I returned from my vacation!

    Lastly, just a quick reminder that The Thrift Store Reseller Guide has gone mobile and is now available for viewing on your cell phone or tablet.   If you haven’t picked up your copy yet, now’s the perfect time!  If you have already purchased it, please contact me for your free copy of the updated guide.  To speed up the process, please provide the following information in your message:  1)  Your name and 2) the email address that you used to purchase the guide.

    Until next time, have a great day and good luck at the thrift stores!

    -Meinard

    Finds of the Week

    Nike Air Max Crosstrainer
    airmaxred
    Item Cost:  $8.99
    Winning Bid:  $34.69
    Air Jordan
    Dub Zero
    Item Cost:  $6.99
    Buy-It-Now Price:  $49.99
    I actually found two pairs of this particular model during one of my visits to Goodwill – both were the same size and in almost identical condition.  This first pair sold really quickly which always makes me wonder if I could’ve sold it for more.  Luckily, I have another pair to satisfy my curiosity.  I have the second pair listed for $20 more and there are currently 5 watchers,  I’ll keep you posted.
    Polo Ralph Lauren Jacket
    polousopen
    Item Cost:  $6.99
    Winning bid:  $47.00
    Vintage Youth Shaquille O’Neal Jersey
    YouthShaq
    Item Cost:  $2.99
    Winning Bid:  $50.00

The Thrift Store Reseller Guide Goes Mobile!!

Today, I’m happy to announce that the Ultimate Guide to Thrift Store Reselling has been converted into a PDF file and I just wanted to take a few minutes to explain why I’m so excited about this update!

But before I do, I want to take this opportunity to send a big THANK YOU!! to Jeanette for making this whole thing possible.  Jeanette was able to convert the entire file into its current PDF format and, thus, save technologically-challenged individuals like myself from hours of frustration.  Thank you so much!

What This Means For You

Converting the Reseller Guide into a PDF format will solve several problems that some of you may have encountered such as formatting and download issues.  Now, however, I’m happy to announce that those issues are finally resolved!

The file is now in “static” viewing mode which means no more formatting or compatibility issues - you will view the Reseller Guide as intended on any device (Mac or PC) with a PDF Reader!  Plus, the file size has been drastically reduced from 89mb to a little over 4mb, which means less space on your hard drive.

Support Whenever You Need It

Mobile TechnologyBy far, the most important benefit of this new format (and the one that I’m most EXCITED about) is the ability to download the guide to your mobile device (smartphone or tablet) and take it with you wherever you go!! 

All you need to do is download Adobe Reader (or any of FREE PDF readers) from the iPhone App Store or from Andoid’s Google Play Store and you now have the Reseller Guide at the palm of your hands, whenever you need it.

There are over 70 pages of brands and strategies in the guide and I know it can be challenging to memorize everything.  Well, now you don’t have to!  If you ever have a question about a brand or something else that you read, simply open the Reseller Guide on your smartphone and you can have your answer in a matter or seconds!

How To Get Your Copy

If you haven’t purchased your copy of the Ultimate Guide To Thrift Store Reselling, simply click on the link below to take advantage of this wonderful update.  You will receive IMMEDIATE access to the updated format so you can start implementing the strategies right away!

Here’s the link:

Buy Now

If You Have Already Purchased the Reseller Guide

Please contact me with your name and the email address that you used to purchase the guide and I’ll be happy to send your a FREE copy of the updated format!

It’s Downloaded on My iPhone and Ready to Go – How About Yours?!

This has been an exciting morning and I know many of you have been waiting for the opportunity to bring the Reseller Guide with you the thrift stores.  I just downloaded the guide on my iPhone and, I gotta tell you, it’s a great feeling to have constant access to it.

Now it’s your turn!

Purchase your Reseller Guide today or, if you’ve already purchased it, please contact me with your name and email address so I can send you your free copy!

Thanks again for your support and good luck at the thrift stores!

-Meinard

The Calm Before The Storm

  • gelatoIt’s been an interesting week since returning from vacation.  In addition to my island-wide scavenger hunt for gelato, most of my time has been spent trying to get my sales numbers back to pre-vacation levels.

    I re-listed all my unsold items and I also opened any unpaid item cases that I didn’t get chance to before I left – surprisingly, one buyer still paid even though it’s been almost three weeks since the auction ended.  I’ve also been visiting the thrift stores like a madman since returning.  Before I left, I was content with visiting 3-4 days a week (skipping a day or two so that the staff can re-stock the merchandise), but not anymore.  I plan on stopping by everyday to see what’s available!

    As far as sales I’ve only had three  (yes, three!) sales since returning but I expect these numbers to change very soon and very quickly.  I’ve decided to go back to listing my items starting at $24.99 while using a 7-day auction format (I’ll explain why I made this decision in a later  post).  The first batch of auctions are ending this weekend so I’m excited and I can’t wait to share the results!

    Cooler Heads Prevail…For The Most Part

    I’ve also been doing battle with an email inbox that has been seriously neglected.  There were several return request that were late and needed to be processed immediately.  Thankfully, every buyer was understanding of the fact that I was on vacation and each case was resolved without incident…except one!  Yup, one buyer left me a negative feedback despite my explanation and despite the fact that my eBay store was placed on “Vacation Mode” until I returned.  Luckily, I was able to convince eBay to remove the negative feedback so it all worked out in the end – just another person to add to my growing list of blocked buyers!

    RelatedHow to Block Buyers from Your Auctions

    Before I share my latest sales, I just wanted to take a moment to share just how happy I’ve been with eBay’s customer-service recently.  For a long time, I always got the impression that eBay turned a deaf-ear to our seller complaints whenever I spoke to a customer-service rep.  In my opinion, the eBay marketplace is still controlled by buyers and will continue to be as long as the current feedback system (where sellers are not able to leave negative feedback for buyers) is still in-place.  However, my recent conversations with eBay reps, the free listing promotions, and the Fall 2013 Seller Update has at least given me hope that they’re starting to become sympathetic to our concerns.  Hopefully this is just the beginning but at least it’s a step in the right direction!

    Hope you’re having a great day.  I’m off to find gelato, cheers!

    Meinard

    Return Sales

    Nike Livestrong Jacket

    Livestrong

    Item Cost:  $5.99

    Winning Bid:  $34.99

    Nike Running Shoes

    iD

    Item Cost:  $6.99

    Winning Bid:  $39.99

    Nike Manny Pacquiao Jacket

    Manny KO

    Item Cost:  $6.99

    Winning Bid:  $39.99

  • There Are Thrift Stores in Europe (I Checked)

    I’m jet-lagged and exhausted but nevertheless still beaming from my recent trip to Europe! It was an amazing adventure filled with a lot of sightseeing, eating, and just plain enjoying everything that Europe had to offer.

    In the end, I found myself walking through several cities including London, Rome, and Paris; not to mention stop-over flights in Los Angeles, Chicago, and Milan.

    I feel so fortunate to have been on this trip and, before I be back to the hustle and bustle of “real-life”, I just wanted to share some of the sights that I saw along the way.

    Never in a million years did I think that I would ever see some of these sights in person, so these are definitely images that I will cherish!

    London

    London was our first stop on the trip and we stayed in the Portobello Hotel which is right next door to the Notting Hill area made famous by the movie “Notting Hill” starring Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts.

    Here’s a pic of our hotel:

    20130909-055146.jpg

    This area had a beautiful market that was filled with hundreds of vendors – there were even some great deals that I found but I stayed true to my “no thrifting” rule during my trip.

    I even found some thrift stores along the way including a Salvation Army and a local chain called Angel Hospice. I didn’t get a chance to stop by but I already saw a pair of Jordan’s and a Lacoste jacket from the window.

    In addition to the movie and this large market, another reason why this area is popular is because it hosts one of the largest events in Europe: the Notting Hill Carnival!

    When I heard Carnival I thought it would be filled with rides and cotton candy but it was nothing like the carnivals that I grew up attending. No, this carnival was more of a parade filled with party-loving, inebriated locals celebrating there last days before school and work starts (it was a holiday similar to our Labor Day).

    There were millions of people packed along one…yes, ONE, street and it was absolutely one of the wildest things that I have witnessed. There were costumes, dancing, drinking, eating, and even people having sex on the streets – trying to be discreet of course, but failing pretty badly!

    Here’s a pic of the event from the “safety” of our hotel balcony. This is just one section of the party and doesn’t even come close to describing just how large this even has become:

    20130909-060414.jpg

    Rome

    A few days in London and a couple of train rides later, we found ourselves on the steps of Rome. This city was filled with tons of well-preserved sites and it really felt like we we’re walking back into time.

    I got to see some amazing sights including the Colosseum, the Vatican, and the Pantheon. All the while eating some delicious Gelato ice cream as we walk to these locations!

    The Colosseum

    20130909-061013.jpg

    The Pantheon

    20130909-061145.jpg

    Paris

    After gorging on Gelato, we found ourselves on the last leg of our journey: Paris!

    Paris, of course, is famous for the Eiffel Tower and we were also able to tour several notable castles as well as take a dinner cruise through the Seine River.

    At this point in the trip, I was starting to feel exhausted but that didn’t stop us from enjoying some of these beautiful sights from the city.

    The Eiffel Tower

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    The Eiffel Tower View (2nd floor)

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    View of the Eiffel Tower from Siene River Dinner Cruise

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    Back On The Grid: Mission Accomplished

    When I decided to stay “Off the grid” during my vacation, I did it to relax, enjoy some undisturbed time with family and friends, and basically re-charge my batteries for the last few months of this year.

    After a day of catching up on some much-needed sleep I’m happy to say that I’ve accomplished those goals.

    I feel great and ready to hit some thrift stores again! I apologize if I wasn’t able to reply to your messages just yet but I promise I will get to every one of them.

    Its going to be a full day of listing items and visiting thrift stores and I can’t wait to get started. Now it’s just a matter of getting back on the grind and there’s no better day to start than on a Monday!

    I hope you’re doing well and it feels great to be back home!

    Talk soon,
    Meinard