In Phoenix, the trash collection authorities are quite gracious by granting us permission FOUR TIMES A YEAR to leave large lumps of litter on the curb in front of our homes. They come around with a huge truck and take it all away for us. When we lived in our previous house with 32 full-grown trees, this plan was a godsend. We would have had to make a trip to the dump four times a year without this blessed service. Large Garbage Pickup even has a map with zones and dates so you never miss your turn to display your trash.
My kids figured out when this would all occur as interesting items started showing up along our street. They asked if I would drive them around the neighborhood to see if there was other people’s junk that could be their treasure. I’m not sure why I fell for this…. but I did, and hard. We found a fish tank, a garden cart, a sand box, a Little Tikes Doll House, an ice cream freezer like in 7-11 (which we gave to the youth group), shutters and a bird-cage, etc. etc. etc.. I’m sure there are other quality items I’m forgetting too. This practice got named “Treasure Junking“. It’s sort of down-scaled garage sale-ing with no money needed. Fit right into our budget.
Well, it is still alive and well in the Crosby house. Last weekend my bug-spraying husband was spraying bugs over in the next city, and lo and behold, it was Large Garbage Pickup in that same neighborhood. Destiny. Rick watched as the man who lived across the street from the fully sprayed house went in and out of the garage three times and placed three bicycles on the curb. This fascinated my husband, Mr. Wallet. He strode over, as he’s been known to do in all parts of the world, and asked about the bikes. Sure enough, the guy was DONE with bikes in his garage that no one used. Rick asked if he could take them for our kids. And now I have ELEVEN bikes parked in the garage where my van should be. (It’s hopeless.) Anyway, the bikes Rick brought home are OLD… old like dirt. Two are black Huffy cruisers with white walls and springs under the seats… and the dream of my 17-year-old daughter’s heart. Truly. She is outside washing it right now. She’s never washed a bike in her life, I’m pretty sure. She went to Walmart and found large wicker baskets that you can put on the handlebars…. and foamy grips that look like wood. She’s really into this.
The third bike, as far as we can determine, is a 1970 Schwinn with a small wheel in the front, large one in the back, a banana seat and long handle bars. Something Beaver Cleaver rode. To my astonishment again, our youngest son claimed it. Yes, it shocked me.
Needless to say, our youngest daughter, who is eight, is thrilled because now there are all sorts of people wanting to go on bike rides with her. And now, for the first time in about 10 years, I have a bike to ride. These bikes even promote good posture! Win win.