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Saturday, May 1, 2010

Slipping into Summer

The twins turned four today, and what better way to celebrate than with a freecycled slip-n-slide romp : )

Funny story:  Talking with the new next-door neigbors one day recently, brought up Freecycle (i love turning people onto a good thing!) AND mentioned in the same convo that i'd like to get a slip-n-slide for the incline between our houses, and her boy and my kids could romp.

Two days later: a Freecycle ad for a DUAL (twins!) S-n-S!!  My neighbor and i laughed so hard when i told her I'd just scored one : )

And here we are:  Thanks Freecycle!!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

OFFERED: A Sense of Humor!

it's been a while since I posted last..  mostly because I forgot my password and I'm lazy, but also freecycle's been pretty slow since the "Snowpocalypse '10" descended upon us.  But one Freecycler took the event in good spirits:

Sent: Saturday, February 06, 2010 10:26 AM
Subject: [FreecycleGermantown] OFFER: SNOW

Free for the taking. First come, first served. Snow-shows, here's your chance to redeem yourselves.

Thanks for the chuckle, William : D

Sunday, January 24, 2010

WANTED: .... Friendship?

Today I saw an OFFER for some Ansel Adams prints.  While our mostly bare walls scream for *something*, I probably would have passed up on this post given the cold, dreary, drippy weather and the fact I was still wearing my pjs.  But the poster was located right in my neighborhood, so I threw out a time for pickup.

Turns out,  ( as we got to exchanging info ) the freecycler just recently moved here, and hasn't really met anyone else yet.  She also has a toddler, a year younger than mine, and one thing led to another and I think I just got a playdate from Freecycle : )  Not sure if the mods would have approved that as a post. 

Anyway, stay tuned for further details on the Case of the Freecycled PlayDate!

Saturday, January 23, 2010

*swoon* My Hero!

Here's a TIME article I found today via Freecycle's Facebook page:
I had never known the origin of Freecycle before... 

Here's to you, Mr. Freecycle Creator Dude.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Freecycle Frustrations and Laughs

Looking back at the pictures from the baby shower mentioned a couple days ago, I started thinking about how great it is to be able to fulfill someone's desires.  That led me to think about WANTED posts I have answered in the past.

After four years of being a Freecycler I've definitely streamlined our "stuff."  Whereas we used to have at least one room or closet full of stuff we might someday use (but never did), we've winnowed down via Freecycle to something approaching common sense:  Seasonal stuff, kid things specifically on hold for upcoming family births, and a realistic number of "projects" (like that ceiling fan i just know we're going to hang soon!)

Anyway, so that leaves me with a lot less to OFFER,  but every once in a while someone's WANT aligns with my available stuff, and there we go.

It should be that simple, but I have experiencial evidence to the contrary.   In my immediate memory:

1.  Moving boxes
2. Pokemon cards
3. Shower supplies to lend*
4. "Any" supplies for a displaced family of 5 in need.

have all been WANTED posts to which I've responded in the last year, and thereby gathered said items, placed them out on the porch, given some stranger my address... only to have them be a "no show".  

Sometimes I've gotten a "found another offer closer/sooner, sorry!", sometimes I've gotten no response, and sometimes (I'm looking at you, Pokemon card lady), I've actually been strung along for over TWO weeks! lol.  There's only so long I can keep this plastic bag full of cards on the porch, youse guys.  Number 4 above actually showed on the second try, but then took about half the stuff i'd gathered (granted it was a couple carloads worth), and never returned for the rest even though she indicated she would.  meh.

* This triangulated lend situation would have been great.. the lady who lent my the supplies agreed to have the second lady borrow them from me...again, meh.


The funniest freecycle WANTED post I ever saw was about a year ago (paraphrasing:)

WANTED:  Any spare gold you might have laying around, taking up room. 
Gold watches, jewelry, teeth, anything for a recycling project.

Because selling bulk gold at 40 cents on the dollar to middle men to sell to the refineries is apparently the new recycling ; D

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Latest and Biggest Freecycle Finds

Part of my decision to take the time and effort to blog definitely goes to one of my dear sister-in-law's, whose blog focuses on the struggles and triumphs of raising two children-under-three. 

But my Muse?  The chair I just picked up three days ago.

We moved from a small cottage to a really big home a year ago.  (You can't time the market, but sometimes you get lucky!)  We're house-poor, as it were, but thanks to Freecycle, and similar hand-me-down venues,  you sure don't know it.  We've had these extensions to our bedroom, basement, and living room, though, that have just been "run around space" for the twins.  But this week my bedroom kicked it up a notch!

It's a Broyhill "Chair and a half" measuring about 55" in width.  It's in AWESOME shape, given it's secondhand..  with only some wear on the arms.  Cushion?  Perky!  Stuffing?  Comfy!  A nice microfiber, plenty of room for me + a half (where 1/2 = 2 squirming 3 year olds.)  The color is a deep plum, but it's such a dark shade that it looks like an exotic chocolately brown in most lighting.  It's the perfect addition.

Speaking of empty extensions, I'm coming up on the anniversary of my biggest and heaviest Freecycle find.

Last year, Superbowl Sunday, I saw an OFFER for a pool table!   Which my husband had JUST been talking about investing in (ack!! imagining those $$$ fleeing my house!)  We made the arrangements to see it, decide we wanted it, and realize there was no way we were getting it out in one piece.  A couple days after the superbowl, one of our dearest friends helped us break it down to it's three-slab slate and haul it.

We DID have to pay a company to come reassemble it, level it, and refelt it.  About a $300 investment in all.. .WAY cheaper than letting my spouse buy a new one, pay to have it delivered, then assembled.  I bet we saved over $1500 dollars this way.  Oh, and the cues, balls, and holder were included : )

And we love it!  It looks great, in awesome shape, and gets used every time we get more than two men visiting.

Runner up for heaviest find, though, is my son's Freecycled captain's bed.  The picture below shows it in waiting for him to decide he's ready to transition to a big-boy bed.  It's got head and footboards waiting to be assembled.  The 4-drawer, 1 cabinet storage space under the bed is HUGE for keeping the chaos at bay.

Oh, and the mattress is a hand-me-down from the folks-in-law.  Net savings?  Would $300 be overestimating it by much?  *cha-ching!*

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

A lender, and a borrower be!

Tonight I'll be meeting a fellow freecycler for the second time in a parking lot off the highway. 

Is freecycle such a clandestine affair?  Not at all. 

I posted a WANTED ad a month ago:  My sister was having her first baby girl, I was hosting her shower, and boy, can those things get expensive!  So I was interested in seeing if anyone had baby shower decorations to spare.  Viola!    One woman had a box bursting with pink and white decorations.  Some were expendable (crepe paper) and some she would like back (centerpeices.)  NOT a problem.

Freecycle's official policy is not to post "to borrow" ads, I suspect because that can get problematic/complicated and there's no liability for the organization.  But those of us down on the ground can and do get past that on occasions like this one.

so pretty!

In gratitude, I'm paying this kind lend back with the handmade "congratulations" banner i made.. it turned out really cute, and I'm happy to think someone else will enjoy it in the future.

In a bit, when i start documenting individual freecycle finds, I'll show you the silver punchbowl set we used for the mimosa.

What is Freecycle?

The Freecycle Network™ is made up of 4,877 groups with 6,910,000 members across the globe. It's a grassroots and entirely nonprofit movement of people who are giving (& getting) stuff for free in their own towns. It's all about reuse and keeping good stuff out of landfills. Each local group is moderated by a local volunteer. Membership is free.