Wednesday, September 29, 2010

More getting ready !!!

Saturday was our baptism by fire at The Grapevine ... we ran the shop for a day !!! What an adventure for the two of us!  Hubby had great plans to get started painting and cleaning while I did all the retail end of the business for the day ... as they say "The best laid schemes of mice and men ..."

And go awry they did ... a steady stream of customers. Furniture sales, carrying, hefting, moving ... rearranging ... I'm not sure what I would have done without him !!!

So, we stayed after the shop closed and did our work then.
Moved things around, took down shelves ... painted. We came back early the next morning and put things back together and started arranging things.

Here's what the space looked like before we began:

And here's the progress we made this weekend ...

The transformation is nearly complete. Still more work to do, and more pictures will follow !!!

Getting ready for our Grand Opening

Since writing about our new adventure earlier this month, we've been hard at work making the dream a reality. Cleaning, painting, and more cleaning and painting. Packing and carrying. Decorating. Re-decorating.

Monday was spent with our local County Government ... getting a Traders License to do business.
What a process that turned out to be.
I'll give you a synopsis.
First stop, the Clerk's Office.
Wrong. My first stop should have been the Zoning and Use Office, on the other side of town.
Got to the Zoning Office and was greeted by a receptionist who never spoke above an angry whisper.
She might need a new profession. Just sayin'.
Filled out paperwork, paid their fee, got my form and headed back to the Clerk's Office.

The Clerk's office filled out a form on their computer, printed it out, handed it to me ... and told me I had to go back to the other side of town to the Treasurer's office.
Got to the Treasurer's office, and they told me no, I had to go to the State Assessment Office ... same complex, up the hill, different building.
At the State Assessment Office they gave me a my own identifying number, and sent me back to the Treasurer's office.

The Treasurer's office stamped my form, and sent me back to the Clerk's office.

Four hours later, I had my Traders License, and I am now legal to do business at The Grapevine  !!!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Return of the missing blogger

I have been gone. Far, far away. Jetting from one coast to the other.
At my age, I learned that the red-eye is most definitely not the way to travel.

Our trip had two purposes: first, to celebrate my birthday.
Which we did, in our own style.
A night in Paradise.
We spent the night at Paradise Inn at Mt. Rainier.
One of our favorite places on earth. No cell phone. No TV. No internet. Just us. Good food. Awesome views. Nature. A roaring fire.

The second purpose: to continue our search for a piece of land to build our retirement home.

We have made an offer on a little slice of heaven, with a wonderful view of the Olympic Mountains, lots of trees, and clean, fresh air. Of course, it needs some work, some clearing ... but all in due time.
So far, negotiations are underway. Some legal wrangling for the sellers to complete.
But ... by the end of October, we could be Land Barons in the Wild West.

I would love to wake up to this view, every morning.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Welcome Rain !!!

Woke up this morning to the sound of raindrops ... we were in desparate need of rain here, so it was a welcome sound. It's too late for our veggies and flowers, most were lost to the heat and lack of rain this summer.

Yesterday's adventure at The Grapevine was successful ... not to mention fun. I enjoy being out and meeting new people, making friends ... talking about things I love ... like vintage jewelry and antiques.

I likely bought more than I sold, which is usually the case for me at events like this.

I have a collection of Winnie the Pooh items, and added some great Christmas ornaments to my collection.
Some wonderful books on seashells ... a new paperweight for my collection.
I picked up a punchbowl and matching cups with an eye toward a display in our new shop.
There were those prints I couldn't live without. You know how it goes.

And hubby brought the pups by for a visit ... we jokingly call them the twins.

That always makes my day. Smiling pups, happy to see me.

And a BLT for lunch from the fabulous Linda's Cafe.

Friday, September 10, 2010

The week's end ...

Working from home gives me freedom from the constraints of the calendar. While it's Friday, and the week's end ... it doesn't carry the same weight it did when I sat at a desk and watched time inch toward 5 o'clock.

Granted, I have things to do and places to go and people to see. But all in good time. My time. My schedule. If those things don't get done? There's always tomorrow.
If I don't get to those places? There's always tomorrow.

But the people ... ahh ... those come first.
It's all about priorities.

Tomorrow is a "Sidewalk Sale" at a local antique shop ... and I'm invited to be one of the sellers.
Always a pleasant day, always a pleasure to see my friends, Helen and Ken, at their amazing little shop.
Treasures galore ...

I'll let you in on a little secret ... as long as you promise not to tell anyone.
It's just between us ...
It looks like I'll be joining Ken and Helen at The Grapevine ... setting up my own little selling space there on a permanent basis.

Now, that's just between us, right?
Mum's the word.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Time for a cool change ...

Today is one of those weather days ... I can almost feel a change in the air. The sun is shining, the sky is blue ... the temperature is cool, and there's a lovely breeze.

Just like the weather, I'm getting ready for a cool change ...

For the past few years I've worked hard to establish a presence on eBay. I've opened a shop on Ruby Lane, and joined their new venture, Ruby Plaza, as a Flagship store. Each one of those undertakings brought a new level of excitement, new interests, new friends, and new ideas.

The climate has changed on eBay. I've been buying/selling/trading on eBay for years. I don't know when my first purchase was, but it was at least 10 years ago. Selling, probably just as long. In the beginning it was fun, friendly, and a great place to see and be seen. In the past 2-3 years, the changes that have come our way as sellers on eBay have made it an uncomfortable place to be a shopowner. The fun is gone. The excitement is gone. The thrill of the auction is disappearing. It's being replaced with mass quantities of mass produced imported merchandise. It's no longer the place to go to replace Aunt Bertha's broken teacup. Or to find that doll you had when you were 12 and wish you could find again.

So, I either have to roll with eBay's imposed changes ... or make some changes for myself.

I'm choosing to make the changes for myself.
With change always comes a bit of fear.
Just as we scan the sky in stormy weather, looking for the ominous clouds ... the approaching rain ... the first bolt of lightning ...
I'm scanning the skies of change with an eye on the horizon ...

What's coming my way ???
Come with me and find out !!!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

My Charmed Life ...

As I think about my life as it is right now, I can only hear the words to one of my favorite Diana Krall songs … and that’s where the name of my shops on Ruby Lane and Ruby Plaza began.

The background music for my life today.

Lyrics by Diana Krall

You know I live a charmed, charmed life
I look out to my left and I look to my right
It's simple but in front of me, in back of me
Is nothing more than ecstasy
A charmed, charmed life
You know we live a charmed, charmed life
A little breath of magic and we roll the dice
Now, my darling, I'm for you and you're for me
We are each other's luxury
A charmed, charmed life

Come on over, baby
Kiss me once then twice
Whisper to me softly low, that makes me feel so nice
Come on over darling, and take me to that place
The one that puts a smile upon my face

That says we lead a charmed, charmed life
Just take a little look into each other's eyes
Our biggest little fantasy has turned into reality
You know we live a charmed, charmed life

You know we live a charmed, charmed life
That's it, a little charmed, charmed... life!

And a new adventure begins … stay tuned to learn more.