Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Why I Love Yard Sales

Normally, I am up every morning at 5:00 to exercise, get ready for work and have some computer time before I leave to be at the office by 7:30. You would think that on Saturday's I would sleep in, but no, I still get up early. Why, you ask? To go to yard sales, of course!!
Yard sales, garage sales, tag sales, they are called by different names in different areas, but whatever they are called, are wonderful entertainment and if you know what you are looking for can be gold mines. They are also in a way, a great form of recycling. I find lots of containers and wreath forms for my floral arrangements. Most just need a bit of cleaning and allow me to keep my price to the customer lower because my cost is lower. I also find clothing and toys for my grandchildren and sometimes myself. I find home decor and garden decor. Last summer, I even found a cash register to use at my craft shows! In a previous post, I mentioned that the little wooden fish I was using in a jewelry project were a yard sale find. This is a picture of another recent acquisition. A lady had three pedestal bases for those beautiful glass balls you see in so many yards. I took the one with a wind chime and dragonflies in it. She said she didn't know you could replace the balls. Guess she doesn't make it to the stores very often. For a buck and and a half price globe from Hobby Lobby, I got a great addition to the garden. I love the purple globe with my orange flower hanging basket!

These little metal butterflies were another treasure I found for 50 cents for 6 of them. They look so cute in the garden.

During the warmer months on most weekends, my SO and I grab a paper Friday night and map out a course of action for the morning. We love the sales that start at 7:00 because we are early people and especially when it gets hot, we like to be finished with our bargain hunting by 9:00. We also like the neighborhood sales. You can just walk from house to house and it's kind of like a big party. If you've never done yard sales, you should give it a try. It can be a fun adventure. The old saying, "one man's trash is another man's treasure" is quite true. So don't try to reach me before 9 or 10 o'clock on a Saturday morning. I'll be out treasure hunting!

Monday, May 25, 2009

The Rest of The Weekend

Today was an absolute gorgeous day in spite of the weatherman's predictions . Temperature was in the high 70's, a light breeze and sunshine. This was my lazy, stay-at-home day. I cleaned the living room in the morning, helped my SO mow the yard and then took the bead tray and spent most of the rest of the day on the patio beading.

I was working on my June "Humor" challenge entry. You can kind of get a sneak peek here.

The colorful little fish were a recent yard sale find. They were on a broken chain and just begging to be reused. The lady said she had bought them on a trip to Guatemala. I won't use all of them for this piece so will have fuel for future creations. I managed to finish the components for my necklace today and am working on the chain to tie them all together now. Should be able to finish well before the deadline. Good progress and a great day!!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

A Lovely Weekend

My day job has been a bit stressful of late so I have really been looking forward to the long weekend. Saturday was a beautiful day, though a bit hot in the afternoon. We started the day with a bit of yard sale shopping. Hit the jackpot in finding shorts and t-shirts for my 4 year old grandson, found a couple unique containers for florals and a really cool bunch of little wooden handpainted medallions that will most likely find their way into a bead project some day. Next we went fishing for catfish in a creek that runs through the ground my SO leases for hunting. In the last two days, he had pulled 8 big, as in 5-10 pound, fish out of this little creek. Alas, they were not biting for me. He caught one nice one and I got a few nibbles before it got too hot and we decided to call it quits. Guess it was that cat's lucky day, cause we threw him back.
Back in town after lunch, I decided to go get my hair trimmed and do a little mall shopping. It was nice to have some "me" time and the mall was nice and cool. Got back to SO's house in time to do some beading before supper which was some of those nice catfish he'd caught earlier in the week. Boy, were they good! After we ate, we headed to the theatre to see the movie Star Trek. It was pretty good, but not quite what I'd expected. Still, it had been forever since we'd been to a movie, so it was fun.
Today we drove to Topeka and ate at Red Lobster for lunch. That's the SO's favorite restaurant and it was his birthday Saturday so I treated. My oldest son, his wife and my grandson met us for lunch. We hadn't seen them for a few months and of course in those few months, little ones can change so much. The baby is fast becoming a little boy. Grandma was amazed at how many words he can say at only 16 months and by the fact that he is even learning how to sign. He is such a determined little fellow, I'm quite sure he will accomplish anything he sets out to. After lunch, we all went to the zoo where grandson entertained us with antics and animal sounds. Seeing things through a toddler's eyes can be such fun. Got a few good photos and had a thoroughly enjoyable afternoon!
So it's been a pretty good weekend and the great thing is, there's one more day left.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Finished and Started Again

It was one of those weekends when mornings were chilly and afternoons were balmy. So I managed to get a little of everything done that I wanted to accomplish. Went to some yard sales and found a few treasures. Shopped for some beads and groceries (not at the same place). Bought some more plants and put them in my shade garden. And finished the blueberry and violet cuff and started on a new button design. The bracelet turned out rather bright but I like it. The other button I started on is a turquoise and copper flower design. It's going to be a bit more subtle in color but I'm liking it too.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Work in Progress

I still have several Czech art glass buttons in my stash and they were easier to get to than my collection of stone cabochons, so I picked out another one to design around for my next project. This one has such beautiful shades of blue violet and lavendar! And if you know me, you know I'm a sucker for anything purple. After studying it a bit, I decided to make a cuff bracelet using the button as a focal. Found a lovely dark blue violet seed beed in my stash along with a complementing hue of purple to use for the base colors. The button has some silver in it too so I decided to accent with silver seed beads and silver firepolish crystals. So far I have the cuff a little over half finished but I haven't decided yet how I want to finish the button. Shall I bezel it and then stitch it to the cuff or should I leave it unadorned and stitched to the center of the cuff? Will have to play a bit, I guess, to come to a conclusion.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Silver Bells and Cockle Shells

Anyone who knows me well will tell you that my thumb is definitely not green. In fact, I have even been known to bring about the demise of the ever popular, practically indestructible, philodendron. I do have a lovely stand of dandelions and chickweed in my yard, but that doesn't seem to impress my neighbors. But in spite of this, I keep trying to beautify my environment. We finally got a break in the rainy spring weather we've been having so I got ambitious this last week and bought up some plants to set out. I've found that I have the best luck with plants when I put them in containers although the shade and rock garden I started two years ago is still looking quite nice. I added an astilbe plant and two forget-me-nots to it this week. I love the magical, mythical characters of fairies and gargoyles and such and several habitate in my garden areas. I found a new fairy this spring at the craft show I did. She's a rustic metal silhouette and looks quite at home in the shade garden next to the new astilbe plant. My containers look at little sparse yet but I'm hoping they will fill in nicely as the summer progresses. I'm kind of wishing I'd gotten one of the hanging geraniums I've pictured for myself. This one is going to my mom's tomorrow for Mother's Day.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

New Creations

I've been having so much fun learning the techniques in Diane Fitgerald's book "Shaped Beadwork". Besides my May EBW challenge entry, I've made up a couple pairs of earrings using the open shapes. One pair uses the rectangle and the other uses the hexagon. I also used the hexagon shape to make a bezel cup for another of those wonderful Czech art glass buttons. There just aren't enough hours in the evenings to try all the ideas this book has inspired.