Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Is it still February? (Feels like April!)

Okay ---
Posting every day in February hasn't worked out well either. Has it ? I may have to go for March for that new beginning.

Seriously, I could give a long list of where my time has gone, but, suffice it to say, I've been busy. Seems good weather takes away those long dull winter days that never seem to end and lend themselves so well to playing, er, make that "working", online. Instead, the warmer air and bright sunshine beckon us to venture out, and, "venture" we did !

Instead of gingerly making our way out on icy roads, only going as far as necessary and coming home to hole up against the cold, we've made day trips, visited friends and even took another mini-vacation. We finally worked that Williamsburg, Va trip into our busy schedule.

That trip was sort of a spur of the moment move. I suggested it to The Big Guy about 9:30 on a warm, sunny Friday morning and we were packed and on the road by noon. You'd think after several decades with me, he'd learn to approach my brainstorms with caution but he was quick to agree.

It was a beautiful day for a scenic drive. By the time we got there and checked into our hotel, it was time for dinner and that was our big activity of the night. We went to one of our favorites, Captain George's Seafood Smorgasboard. This is one of the best spreads anywhere (and we've checked out quite a few!) They also have locations in Virginia Beach, Myrtle Beach and Kill Devil Hills. Dinner was fantastic, as always. Good thing, because the rest of the trip was a bust!

Well, at least the Williamsburg portion. My original plan was to go out for dinner on Friday (I used that as bait to get The Big Guy to make the trip!) and then, on Saturday, I wanted to go to The Pottery (the Grandaddy of all outlet shopping in the East) to shop for a few hours.

All the tourist literature I picked up down there indicated The Pottery was under renovation but was open during construction. I checked carefully to see how early they opened on Saturday and we were on schedule to get there when they opened the gate at 9 a.m. About a block before we got there, I was glancing through one last visitor's guide I'd picked up at breakfast and came across an ad that said The Pottery would be closed in February for construction. Uh Oh. It happened to be February 4th !!

About that time, the gate came into sight with a big banner reading, "See you in March!!" I really was quite proud of my man. He simply sighed, very loudly, and said, "What now?" I recovered quickly, pointing out that there is a standard outlet mall just across the road and the store he normally buys his jeans at was in that mall. He needed jeans, didn't he? After waiting until those stores opened at 10, he did, in fact, buy two pairs of jeans. We picked up a Ravens sweatshirt for one of the kids at a fantastic price and I bought a pair of shoes at the Croc outlet. (Of course, all those outlet stores, except for the Croc store, are also at the outlet mall near home. We didn't need to travel 4 1/2 hours to get there.)

Okay, it was now 11 a.m. and we were done. So, we headed toward home. Not much conversation at that point. When he finally calmed down and spoke, he suggested we drop in and visit with my cousin in Northern Virginia. She's had a lot of medical problems this year and has been tied to the house for most of the last 9-10 months so we haven't seen much of them.

We did stop and visit for an hour or so and we really enjoyed seeing them. I guess it did give our trip purpose and made it all worthwhile.

An added plus was when we were leaving their house, only a block or two down the road, we came across a flock of turkey vultures and a beautiful bald eagle working on a deer carcass right at the side of the road. That's the closest I've ever come to an eagle in the wild! So, all in all, it was a good trip!

What do you think my odds are of getting him to go back in March so I can shop at The Pottery?

Thursday, February 2, 2012

February? Already !!!

O.K., well, the goal of posting daily in 2012 hasn't gone well so far. One month down and only one post. Guess that's a "FAIL."

REVISED GOAL for the year: Post DAILY beginning with February 2, 2012. (I was going to make it the 1st but I fell asleep!)

Wish me luck, please!

Atlantic City boardwalk in the January sunshine!!

How we're already a whole month into the year just floors me!
Where did the time go? Usually, I get bogged down with the cold and dreary winter weather and the fact that I tend to hibernate rather than venture out during that time but this year has been different. At least, here, in the Mid-Atlantic, it's been unusually warm. We've had several 70 degree days and a lot of days when a coat wasn't necessary, just a sweater or sweatshirt. heck, we've even seen a lot of shorts and flip flops on the street and such.

The view of the ocean from our room at Trump Plaza in Atlantic City.
(We had views of both the ocean and the bay from our room!!)

I didn't think we'd done much since the holidays but when I gave it deep thought, we've been fairly busy. We've had houseguests twice this month and squeezed in a mini-vacation ourselves. We spent a couple of nights in Atlantic City at Trump Plaza and, yes, it was warm enough to walk the boardwalk. We even spent time sitting on a bench watching the world go by. We've done a few day trips, too. One to Lancaster, PA and another to Cowtown in Woodstown, NJ (A huge marketplace that's only open on Tuesdays and Saturdays with at least 150 or so vendors in the winter. More in the summer.) We've been to the movies a couple of times and out to dinner often with friends. I squeezed in some major cooking days, too. You know, the kind that keep you in the kitchen for most of the day. (Good news is, that usually means some stock-piled meals in the freezer at the end of the day!) On top of that, business has been extremely good for January. This has been my best sales for January in about 2 decades (since I used to do mall craft shows). That's kept me busy as most of the orders were painted to order although a few were for some vintage pieces.

View of the bayside marshlands from our room at Trump Plaza in Atlantic City.

I've worked up a bunch of new designs for the shop. Among them were a number of Valentine's Day onesies, and a whole cupcake line including onesies and crocheted toys. I've done some beautiful lamps although I'm having trouble keeping them in stock. the last one was listed for less than a half hour when it sold! Right now, I have several that I've base-coated but have not yet done the detail work on. Hopefully, I'll finish them up in the next day or two. Also, look for some beautiful painted glass vases soon, too.

This one lasted less than a half-hour.

Today's project has been doing some research for more vintage pieces I need to photograph and list. That can be quite time-consuming. The stumper today has been a pair of white porcelain doves.
For more detailed pics, use this link:

We know they are at least 30 years old. (They came with The Big Guy and the house. They were a package deal. LOL) I thought they were alabaster for many years but just today really began looking at their marks. They each measure approx. 3 1/2" x 5 1/2' and weigh about a pound each. They have small plastic plugs in the bottom like S & P shakers have. They are actually porcelain, filled with what appears to be white sand! At first, we thought it was salt but neither of us are brave enough to taste it so we've decided it is sand. It is quite grainy. There is a small gold sticker with red writing that states: "Our Own" (in script-like lettering) then, below that "Genuine Porcelain" is printed and then below that the word, "Imported" again, in script like lettering. "Our Own" actually appears to be a brand name. ANY IDEAS?

Well, I need to get busy doing some photos of this vintage stuff so I can get busy and start listing. I full well plan to chat with all of you again tomorrow. (Keep your fingers crossed.)