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Toddler coming!


confused of chalus

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Does anyone have any bright ideas as to where to get second hand baby equipment - high chair, stairgate, toddler toys, in reasonable condition and very reasonable cost for visiting grandchild arriving in a few weeks. In England I would go to charity shops or jumble sales. I've tried the local TROC - nothing available. The local paper classifieds seem to be asking very high prices. We've never been to a vide grenier and there are a couple coming up. Are these like car boot sales?

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If it's only for a short period could you ask around to see if you can borrow the equipment from a neighbour whose children have outgrown them?  This is what we did when we had small children staying with us.

Re the vide greniers, from our experience they seem to have mainly small items (most you wouldn't give house room!) rather than larger things like cots and buggy's.

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[quote user="confused of chalus"] We've never been to a vide grenier and there are a couple coming up. Are these like car boot sales? [/quote]

Yes, they are in principle but usually a whole lot nicer ... And there are, normally, more than a few genuine bargains ... but, as this is France, you need to make an offer and not just pay the ticket price. If, after discussion, you consider that the final price asked is too much then be polite and say so and move on -  there will be no bad feeling.

Sue - who genuinely enjoys 'vide grenier' and has found some super stuff at good prices. [:)]

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I would definitely try a vide grenier. I haven't bought baby equipment but I do have a range of bikes to suit all my grand children from aged ten downwards. I've also bought things like table football for those rainy days.

Vide greniers are generally more civilised than car boot sales. They don't begin at a ridiculous hour and the vendors can actually get their stuff out of the car without being mobbed. There is sometimes is a tendency for the prices to be high and a reluctance to negotiate, more often though I've seen children's equipment and toys being sold by children who just want a few euros pocket money.

Good luck !

Hoddy
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You obviously have a better class of vide grenier than us!  Ours seem to be full of old crockery, glasses, cookware, clothes (very interesting styles!) old VHS tapes etc., very dodgy lamps and light fittings....and books (the latter I have bought - being an avid reader).  I've seen a few small toys being sold but never equipment.  I know my neighbour does go to a regular charity 'bring and buy' type sale and she has bought many larger kids items from there.  I think they tend to be held less frequently that vide greniers though.

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Hello Confused

I am an avid visitor of charity shops & car boot sales in the UK and vide greniers etc in France.  I am also a mother and guardian to several children.

Troc shops are expensive and I give them a wide berth now.

Look to see if you have an Emmaus in your area.  http://www.emmaus.org.uk/73/history-of-emmaus-early-days-in-france  This is a charity set up by Abbé Pierre for the homeless and they have enormous warehouses dotted around France, stuffed with second hand goods.  The prices are still higher than the UK but you get the occasional bargain.  The weblink is not the French site but you could follow the trail.

Vide greniers are more expensive than in the UK and try to sell stuff that would have been skipped in the UK.  However, you do get selective bargains.  They last all day (from 9ish until 5ish) and are very civilised, with stall holders taking time to chat etc.  As some posters have said, you can negotiate prices, especially nearer closing time.  You do get children trying to sell their toys, although these won't be toddlers' things.  I do recommend that you go to the ones you mentioned.

If you can't get a high chair, for a short time a car seat suffices.  Travel cots are a good substitute for real cots and your daughter/son might have one (as they fold up into a small bag in the car).

The other place to look is http://www.leboncoin.fr/

Where are you in France?  Is there a place called Chalus?  Someone on the Forum might be able to lend you stuff.  I could lend you have a bag of stickle bricks and a bag of duplo, for example, but don't know how far away you are.

Good hunting (wasn't that the I-Spy motto?)!

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[quote user="Hoddy"]I wonder why we have such different perceptions Scooby ? Our French houses must be within vide grenier distance of each other.

Hoddy[/quote]

We only go to the very local ones, i.e. the next village or so (and probably the experience of them has coloured our judgement re ones further afield [:)]).  I'm not a car boot fan in the UK - in fact I can hand on heart say I've never been to one - so that's probably is a factor too!

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If you let us know where you are it would help. I have a high chair you could borrow, purchased second hand for visiting Grandchild last year. I would advise also checking other forums, I am not sure if I am allowed to mentioned others here but Angloinfo has a classified section and always have a look in their " bring and buy " section. Very often childrens things are advertised and you can also put a " wanted " advert in as well.  Good luck.
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Cathy and Val B, and everyone. Thanks. Confused of Chalus (aka Kathy) is grateful for all your ideas and advice - and indeed offers! Daughter coming for a few days on hand luggage ! But we have a cot and car seat from last visit, she'll bring push chair. I think I'll put up a petit annonce in the Intermarche and try the vide greniers (it's an afternoon out!).  Picked up a toy pushchair for 3.99 at supermarket - she'll love it. She's just as happy piling up my stock of tinned foods as bricks and with a bucket and spade and our 5 cu metres of gravel she'll have a great time!

Chalus is lovely little town in 87 Haute Vienne on RN 21 - we live just outside. Ask the neighbours? they are lovely but very ancient. I will, however, ask the postman!

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Just to let all who replied know that we had a fantastic time at two vide greniersthis weekend! One lovely wooden high chair for 8 euros (choice of several!) tricycle 7 euros, assorted toys 5 euros and a dinky little chair for 5 euros. We will return as she grows and get bigger and bigger bikes - there were lots. I know what you mean about the china and clothes though. I suppose it all depends what you want. But children's stuff was good value and lots of it.

Thanks everyone.

Kathy

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