Saturday, June 25, 2011

Closet clean-out

I am spending the Quebec long weekend at my parent's place as Barbie & Ken's Seaside Resort is always a lovely spot for a mini-getaway. While I planned on sipping wine by the lake, soaking up the sun, swimming in the pool and losing myself in a good book, the weather is uncooperative and it is gloomy outside.

This is not the same house that I grew up in, but there are storage bins full of my childhood momentos and as a rainy day activity, I decided to revisit my treasures. They are meticulously organized as when I moved out five years ago, I took the time to purge my closets and I was careful to leave behind only a few neatly stacked containers. I am still holding onto the usual stuff: memorable projects from kindergarten, miscellaneous medallions, photo albums from grade 12 grad formal, and of course, my favourite toys. While these bears and dolls are not on display (except for today's photo op), there are a few items that I will never part with. These include the Care Bear Wish Bear that my grandparents gave me as a little girl, the Cabbage Patch doll my that Gramma Jo gave me for Christmas one year that I promptly named Baby Jo, the well-snuggled Puppy Surprise dog that stores 5 little babies in her tummy, and the flower pot of Fairy Winkles that I begged for on my 7th birthday.

Back row: Wish Bear (L) and Baby Jo (R); Front row: Puppy Surprise (L) and Fairy Winkles (R)

I did come across another bin of plush toys that I accumulated over my teens/twenties that have no sentimental value. I decided to give the nearly-new TY and GOODY stuffed toys to the Salvation Army as these items deserve to be loved by a little girl who will adore them. But, I must confess, before packing up all these items for the donation bins, I did do some searches online to confirm whether or not my Beanie Babies are worth anything.

Does anyone else have a secret Beanie Baby collection? These were popular in the mid-90s and everyone gave them to everyone for birthday party gifts. My Mum told me they were about $9 each and parents would buy special tag protectors since the Beanie Babies would be worth something some day.

NEWSFLASH: that someday is not now and my Beanie Baby collection is worth zilch. I looked up every single one of my Beanie Babies on E Bay (from Nip the cat to Prickles the hedgehog) and I found hundreds of sellers auctioning off the same toys for $3 - $7 each.

Prickles, Circa 1996 with a current E Bay price of $5.00
Nip: Circa 1994 with a current E Bay price of $5.84
It appears that Beanie Babies have depreciated in value over the last 15 years and they are hardly scarce items. While I could hold onto my collection for another 15 years, I decided that Nip, Prickles and the rest of their friends will be donated. There are smarter ways for me to make money than holding onto my Beanie Babies  and call me silly, but these "collector" toys have never even been played with and I think that every toy deserves that at least once in its plush lifetime. 

As for my well-loved Wish Bear, Baby Jo, Puppy Surprise and The Fairy Winkles? I think they are coming home with me to Montreal.


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