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Moving Day!

moving truckI’m coming up on 10,000 views on this blog. It’s been a good long ride so far, and I’ve taken the plunge.

If you want to keep reading my blog, you’ll need to come find me at my new home: 

A new look awaits you. Don’t go into shock. Play around over there. Tell me what you think. Don’t worry, you don’t have to bounce back and forth between sites to get into the archives. I’ve migrated everything over to the new site. So, it looks kinda like here….except completely not like here. It’s like when you take all your furniture to a new house. It’s kinda like home, but not.

But, that’s enough for here. What are you waiting for….go there!

Oh, and make sure you update your bookmarks.

See you at the new place.



You want what for those shelves?!?

Despite the threat of impending rain, I took off this morning to go to some yard sales. There were a few bummers where the promised yard sale didn’t exist because people didn’t drag their stuff into the yard due to the weather, and I had to navigate a few cramped garages, but it was worth it. I wasn’t very far into the day before I saw a stack of wood shelves and the standards for them on a guy’s driveway. I cruised past and into the garage, but on the way out, I stopped to look at them.

There was a 4 written on tape on the side of one standard, so I was wondering if that was the price. I was trying to size up the situation when the owner came over. He informed me that what I was seeing wasn’t all I’d be getting. He had the standards, eight 4 foot shelves, and four 3 foot shelves. The 3 and 4 foot shelves can’t be used together since there is only one set of standards, but basically, the package included 12 shelves that could be made into two sizes. I was starting to think that 4 on the side of the shelves was too good to be true as a price tag. All the wood was in great shape. Plus, check out how close the holes were drilled in the standards.

shelf holes Sorry, I was taking the picture with one hand and using my thumb for reference, but I think the picture is clear enough to convey the idea that the holes are super close together the entire length of the shelves. Everything is lined up so beautifully too. I’m guessing that the guy made them and that he really knew what he was doing.

So, after he finished telling me what was included, he said, “Eh, you can have it all for $5.”


I had been standing there wondering if I should insult him by asking if the 4 on the tape was the price, and he actually said I could have everything for $5. He didn’t have to tell me twice. I whipped out money and paid him before anyone else could overhear and try to get in on the deal.

Sometimes I come home from a yard sale, and I think, “Hm…I ought to have bargained with them to take a few more bucks off that item.” Tonight I’m thinking, “I should have hugged that guy!”

I was  so excited that I carried the shelves to the basement and partially assembled them (which was a bit tricky for one lone person to accomplish). I have a bunch of lamps that I want to refinish, so I started arranging them on the shelves. Now, I can actually get to the peg board that holds my tools, which means I can actually make progress cleaning the basement. Yes, this was $5 well invested.

And, when I went downstairs to take this picture with the most horrific backdrop ever, I realized that if I take the harps off the tall lamps, I can actually drop the shelf and add one or two shelves beyond what I thought I could add.

Go, yard sales! May the basement cleaning momentum continue.

start of shelvesP.S. With the holes drilled so perfectly close, I also think this would make the perfect fabric storage/quilting supplies shelf if I ever bring it up from the basement and stain it. Hm…maybe I can get some standards made for the 3 foot shelves…

Wait just a minute…does this look right?

Yesterday, while I was extremely hungry, I cruised down the organic aisle of my grocery store. The net result was me leaving with Mom’s Best Naturals Crispy Cocoa Rice (yum) and some organic chocolate. At the Justice Conference, I heard that one of the easiest ways to redirect our spending to fair trade is to change our coffee and chocolate suppliers. The bargain hunter in me will just have to be reminded that the extra coffee dollars are going towards the fair treatment of coffee growers when I next purchase coffee for my house. That should be a fairly easy switch.

Chocolate is hard though. I’ve never been highbrow in my chocolate tastes. I live close enough to Hershey that I’ve been through their simulated chocolate factory several times, and splurging on chocolate for me is buying a Toblerone bar. To be honest, I’m not a fan of the high cocoa concentrations of organic chocolate. Making a chocolate switch is going to take more than a change in my spending; it’s going to be an acquired taste for the chocolate itself.

Yesterday, I was sitting in my office eating my organic chocolate because it’s been a chocolate kind of week. I was nearly beside myself on Wednesday after the weatherman all but assured me that the entire region was going to be buried in snow. When I woke up, there was not a flake in sight, and I had to drag myself out of bed to work. Seriously, around 2:00, I almost crawled under my desk to take a nap.

Anyway, I was still trying to recover on Thursday, so I was eating chocolate. And, I was reading the story on the chocolate box to remind myself that I was doing good, even if the chocolate didn’t taste all that good (to my low brow tastes, mind you). That’s when I noticed these two statements on the packaging:

First statement: The stories from our cocoa partners…never cease to inspire. Look inside this box to read about the journey of farmers who gave up illegal coca for prosperous cocao.

Don’t get me wrong. That’s great. But, I did chuckle to find this statement as well on the packaging.

Second statement: Our expert chocolatiers use unique flavor combinations, quality organic ingredients and an artisan’s touch to craft these award-winning, habit-forming bars.

Hm…habit-forming bars and illegal coca mentioned in close proximity on the box. ::wink wink::

Let the adventures in organic chocolate begin. Small gifts of organic chocolate to sample will be accepted.


Say it isn’t so…

I can’t believe I’m almost at the one week mark without posting. I’m still here!

I spent Friday and Saturday at the Justice Conference in Philadelphia. The conference organizers we’re messing around. Both days were 12+ hours of stuffing my brain full of insights — even meal times were good times to catch up with the organizations represented there and to talk with fellow conference goers. My notebook for the last few sessions is empty because my brain was pulsating by that time on overload. I plan to write some of my impressions this week.

The plan was actually to write some throughout the weekend, but my tablet was on the fritz, which was supremely annoying since the whole point of buying it was to travel with it. But, I think I might have figured out what was wrong…maybe. At any rate, it powered up again tonight, which is more than it wanted to do all weekend. Ah well, the fail was probably a good thing. I was forced to get a little more out of my introvert shell to talk to some people. It might not sound like much, but I made sure I initiated conversations with two conference goers, and I then didn’t rush off when a third person initiated a lengthy conversation with me. That doesn’t include chatting with organization representatives, so I think I should get introvert bonus points or something. And, I’m thankful that Relevant magazine gave out complementary copies of the magazine in the conference bags because with the tablet dead, I also was stuck without the books I had downloaded onto it. And, that was enough to cause a near panic attack. Relevant proved a suitable substitute though.

Then today, I slept in ridiculously long, procrastinated some and caught up on emails, and then kept working on my quilting project. I’m trying to push through to a reveal in the near future and, more importantly, being able to gift it. We’ll see how this week goes. At any rate, I started with a new spool of 225 yards of thread at the beginning of this project, and I finished off that spool today. I’m still not even done piecing yet. This is an ambitious project, but all the pieces are finally starting to add up to something cohesive (and a bit out of square — my typical hallmark).

Eyesore of the neighborhood…fixed

This weekend was unseasonably warm for a Pennsylvania January, so I decided it would be foolish not to take advantage of the weather rising above 50 degrees. The hillside in front of the house has been begging for attention. Leaves fall into the bushes, making everything a big old mess. I manage to not think […]

Let it NOT snow

My all-weather snowman post must have jinxed us. We did wind up with a white Christmas here in the northeast, but the timing wasn’t the best. The snow started falling in earnest around 3:30 on Christmas Eve and continued to make things messy throughout the evening. My sister actually called me in hysterics from an exit on the highway because the plows were slow to make it out onto the roads. Eventually, she made it home safely without me going out to rescue her.

Then, round two came today. I was looking forward to going out clearance shopping to pick up some cheap supplies for Christmas Pinterest projects next year, but my mom got to work, called home, and told us we’d better stay put.

Jillian and I decided that we should shovel the snow since it would be dark by the time dad got home. I packed several coats for my trip home, but the weather was nice, so I didn’t pack boots, gloves or scarves. This was distinctly a bummer since I’m well prepared for the outdoors when I’m at home. I’ve got my one piece coveralls, so I don’t even have to get out of my pjs to shovel. I’ve got snow boots and rain boots and gloves with all sorts of thinsulate. But, today, I gave my sister mom’s snow boots since I’m a nice person…sometimes. That meant I was reduced to putting on Walmart bags, taping them to my legs, and putting on my sneakers. I ought to have just shoveled in the Walmart bags. It would have made for better stories to tell my kids someday. I would have made sure to walk uphill both ways too.

ghetto snowboots
















Once we got outside, it actually started to rain. But, we were afraid it wouldn’t be enough to melt the snow, so we still shoveled. We were soaked by the time we came inside. The wet spot on my elbow was after the rain soaked through my coat and my fleece.

wet from snowI’m not sure why Jillian cut the top of my head off. Maybe I was having a bad hair day after all that, and she didn’t want to tell me.

I’m off now to continue my puzzle race against her. We’re seeing who can get their 500 piece puzzle together first. We’ve been keeping ourselves occupied by playing games and watching HGTV all day.

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas! I hope you are gathered with people that you love.

“I bring you good news of great joy which will be for all the people; for today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.” – Luke 2:10-11


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