Monday, November 30, 2009

Busy Times!

Busy, busy times! A little over a week ago I spent Friday and Saturday at the Christmas In The Foothill Craft Show. Then came Thanksgiving...I don't have much family nearby so it was just my son and me, but ya still gotta eat turkey and stuff!!!! And we did, of course!

Then J had to work Friday, but was gone over the weekend. I spent that time trying to get Christmas decorations in place, all the while keeping in mind that next Sunday I'm going to move all the furniture out of at least two rooms, probably three, and possibly four....because Monday, December 7 is our big Christmas Craft Fair here at my house. (I'll get back to that in a minute.)

So I spent time Saturday and Sunday putting out/up Christmas ornaments and decorations and the trees, etc. Today I managed to make a few phone calls and send emails to "alert" people of our big sale...and even went for a 16 mile bicycle ride with Mary (quite enjoyable!!!!)

Tomorrow a.m. I'm to go for a bone density test (I'm 65 now...I get ALL the good stuff...wanna hear about the last one? I don't think so!!)

Thursday I plan to go to Manhattan, pick up my cousin Shon, then we're going on to her sister's, my other cousin Becky. And we're gonna do whatever we find to do that's fun.

Friday evening I need to go set up a booth for the Hutchinson Recreation Christmas Arts & Crafts Boutique that will be held in the Trinity United Methodist Church at 17th and Main on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Then Sunday clean house and move all the furniture out so we can have our Craft Fair here on Monday.

The carpets get cleaned on Tuesday.

And Wednesday I'm doing a one day trunk show with my sterling silver at Flawless Image Tanning Salon here in Hutch.

Then I have a whole week to catch up until Pat and I set up booths on Third Thursday in Downtown Hutchinson. We've gotten permission to set up inside Hayes Home Furnishings at Sherman and Main. Pat was there last month and said it was a very good place to be.

Now...back to this Christmas Craft Fair we're having here at my house next Monday. So far I have either 8 or 9 other vendors and I think we're going to have a grand time. We're going to have door prizes and secret hostess prizes and snacks and drinks.

One of our vendors, Janis, is going to fix pasta (Pappardelle's Pasta). She was my "neighbor" at The Christmas in the Foothills show and I got to try three different pastas she had fixed (oink, oink!) They were absolutely delicious! I bought a couple: one is a lemon chive angel hair and the other is a tri-color (spinach, dried tomato, regular) wheel-type pasta. Wonderful! I won't give it away, but she's told me what she plans to fix...we had it the other day and it's FUN!!!!! Something I'd bet you haven't tried before! As to how good it is: one man tasted it, looked at her and smiled real big and said, "Are you married?" Lip-smackin' good!!!!

Some of my other vendors include Brenda with her gorgeous beaded jewelry, Pat with her Iris-folded greeting cards, Carolyn with Scentsy candles, Heike with the wonderful plasma-cut custom metal work, Dartyle and her friend Beverly with some of the cutest embroidered tea towels and other goodies, possibly Billy & Shari with some antiques sprinkled around, and possibly Mark with his wonderful goat's milk soaps.

We're all hoping for a good turnout...we've all sent emails, and are making phone calls, and passing out cards and invitations...and speaking of's YOUR invitation now!!!! Please feel free to drop by between noon and 7 p.m. on Monday, December 7 and see what fun we're having. There'll be a sign out front to help you find the place. And here's where I guess maybe I'm be at and I'll send you my address. Hope to hear from you and see you on Monday!!'s getting late and I've still got work to do so I better go. The weather is behaving and today was gorgeous. Don't miss the opportunity to get out and do something in the next few days. They (the weather-guessers) talk like this nice stuff is about to end. Count your blessings...and good night!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Wild Weekend

It's been a wild ride, baby!!!!!!!!!!!! I've spent the past two or three days getting ready for, doing, and getting over a big craft show. The "Christmas in the Foothills" craft show was here in Hutchinson Friday and Saturday. I went up to the fairgrounds Thursday afternoon and sat up my tables and displays. Then Friday I was there at 7:45 am to work my booth. The doors closed at 8 pm and we were able to leave by about 8:30 or so. Saturday hours were 7:45 am til about 4 pm.

"Christmas in the Foothills" started several years ago at one of the promoters' homes in the Foothills area north of Hutch. Then it grew and escalated into the now Domestic Arts building at the Kansas State Fairgrounds.

The three main gals that put this show on must work themselves to a frenzy!!! It is exceptionally well handled, well advertised, and well received. The crowds both days were great!!!

They have a system of collecting the monies that seems to really work as well. My booth was a little different, but I think it seemed to work pretty well. I wrote tickets and the shopper took the ticket to the check out with their other purchases, then dropped back by my booth (very close to the check out) and we traded their ticket (stamped "PAID") for their sack of goodies with the copy of the ticket attached to it. There may have been a few slip-ups, but overall it seemed to work pretty well.

I had said my goal was to earn enough in those two days to pay my real estate taxes for the first six months. (I was asked if I didn't make that much did that mean I wouldn't be able to pay my taxes? No...I just want to feel like I'm paying them with "free" money!!!) At the end of Friday I was pretty happy! By the end of Saturday I was ecstatic!!!! I had a very good sale...a Very Good Sale!!! I had a very, Very, VERY good sale!!!! I can pay my taxes and still have a little left over! (I realize in "real life" there's no such thing as paying your taxes and having anything left over...they'll be back to get the rest somehow I'm sure!)

I now hope that I have a much clearer idea of what it takes to be a real craft fair vendor. I ran out of a very crucial item that is a good seller. I had 46 pair of earrings of a particular style that always the end of Friday I had 9 pair left. By 10 am Saturday those were gone too. Next year...just wait til next year.

However, part of the problem I'm facing now is that I have craft shows on December 5, December 7, and December 9. I still have inventory...but not very many pairs of earrings!!! And not any of THE earrings!!!! I may have to take orders and promise them before Christmas. (I came home Friday evening and ordered 50 more I'm thinking maybe I should have doubled that order even!)

Anyway...after the show Saturday I kind of just dumped everything in my rolling suitcase and came home. What a mess!!! I spent a lot of today sorting and cleaning and counting inventory. Sure looks better now.

I can only agree with a comment my cousin's GOOD to be me!!! Count your blessings.....I do!!! I genuinely do! It's not just the $$$$ by any means...I love meeting the people, and talking to everyone, and seeing old friends, and making new friends. It was a great time and I thoroughly enjoyed it!!!!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Check This! my pictures of the snow weren't so great...but check Greg's.....we DID have accumulation however (Thank Heavens!)

Monday, November 16, 2009

Do You See What I See?

I took the photo of this cute little wreath Christmas decoration at the sale last Saturday at Gypsum. Now I'm well aware, they aren't referring to what I'm referring to, but....

This is what's happening outside my front door even as I type this. SNOW!!!!!!

And you can see it even better when I point to camera towards the church. YUCK!!!

Sorry..I gave MANY years to loving winter. And now I don't! I want more summer..or at least fall!!!! Warmer, dryer, longer days!!!!!
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Saturday, November 14, 2009

Prairie Patch Craft Show - Gypsum, Ks.

Wow!!! Oh WOW!!!!!! Mary and I went to the Prairie Patch Craft Show near Gypsum, Kansas today. (Gypsum is between McPherson and Salina..kind of North of Assaria.) We left Hutch at 9 am and pulled into the school parking lot there at 9:58 am. Sign said "10 til 4"...perfect timing!

On the "final stretch" we noticed there was a lot of traffic. Gypsum is listed as population 414 persons...I'm sure that road got more use today than it has in quite a while! There was a great crowd!

I was searching for local craft shows on-line when I "ran into" this one. The website said the show began in 1999 with 20 vendors and attendance of a couple of hundred shoppers. Now they fill three gyms with 120 vendor spaces and an attendance exceeding 2,000. I thought I needed to go check it out (there were no spaces available by the way, or I would have been there as a vendor!)

I took lots of pictures and these are just a few of the really wonderful crafts exhibited. I picked up cards from several vendors (thinking of maybe trying to attract them to Hutchinson for a show next year) and found they were fairly local: McPherson, Hillsboro, Lindsborg, Marquette, Council Grove, Pratt, Herington, Abilene, Osborne, Salina..and even one from Beatrice, Nebraska.

There were purses, jewelry, wood crafts, quilts, candies, jellies, marble-art, popcorn shirts, embroidery, stone work, furry puppets, greeting cards, and a myriad of other crafts. Kansas is full of really talented people!

The building was FILLED with buyers!!! Tons of people shopping and buying and looking. A truly great market!

They also had a varied menu of some really delicious sounding, delicious looking food...and prices were extremely reasonable..both for the food and the crafts.

It was a fun day. I think both Mary and I fully enjoyed it. The weather was somewhat cooperative...overcast, but not raining or snowing or too bad. It was a good day!

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Sunday, November 8, 2009


Did anyone but me notice this ad in today's Hutchinson News? My photo isn't exactly the best...but notice at the bottom it says "Must be 8 years old & playing bingo."


My son suggested I send it to Jay Leno and maybe I'd get a free coffee mug or something...but I decided I didn't need that so why bother.
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Saturday, November 7, 2009

Size DOES Count!!

Just a couple of quick pictures of Pat and Kathy at the 10' x 10' booth "we" had rented. (read the last blog, you'll understand my snippiness). I believe that's actually an 8' table with 2 chairs....not 10' x 10'.

I wound up going there today to talk to several other people as well at Pat and Kathy...and we're now planning on getting together and doing a huge (I hope) open house type craft fair at my house on December 7. My sister and Pat and I did this a couple of times last spring, but we want to do another pre-Christmas one. If you'd like to attend and don't have my address, please email me at and I'll get more information to you.

We'll have several different displays. Pat does creative greeting cards. She's the one that does the wonderful Iris-folded cards. My sister Jude will have her jewelry with real stones. My friend Carolyn will have her Scentsy products (so my house should smell good!!!) And Heike and Kevin are planning to set up their "Three Doors North" custom plasma cutting and steel arts work. (Neat, neat stuff!)

I have a couple of others that I may ask to join, but I need to figure space yet. We plan to have door prizes and secret hostess prizes and all kinds of fun. For me, the best part is catching up with people I haven't seen in awhile.

At any rate, planning and talking to people at the craft fair today brought my spirits up quite a bit. Something to look forward to is always good therapy for me.

It's a beautiful day here...warm, sunshiny, and slightly breezy.

Oh, and these last two pictures are so you'll understand why I referred to my tree as Sir Sycamore. With leaves this size, I sure don't want to call him a Sissy!!!! (The coke can is merely for size reference.)

Have a great day...a wonderful weekend...and don't forget to count your blessings!! For instance, this could be YOUR sycamore tree!
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Friday, November 6, 2009


Late this afternoon I learned that a craft fair that I thought I was to be in tomorrow, simply isn't going to happen for me.

I met my friend Pat at the Methodist Church and we were waiting for the "person in charge" to arrive. I decided to run a couple of errands, and when I returned Pat met me with a very upset look on her face.

We were going to share a 10 x 10 booth...the church people were to provide one table and I have a 6 foot and a 4 foot table of my own that we were also going to use. Seems that their idea of 10' x 10' is actually one table...down the middle of a lane. When Pat had sent in the entry she put just her name and her creative cards on it...never thinking there might be a problem. Well, there was. No booth sharing and no extra space evidently.

I stayed and waited for another lady who "has the final say".... and caught a bit of a conversation between her and the first lady. I saw her nod to the hallway and laugh, so I "mosey-ed" over there. She said she thought the traffic flow was ideal the way it was and didn't want to change anything. They had large (like 4-6' in between the booth spaces) and I could see plenty of room for several more tables...but NO! So I mentioned that I'd seen her nod to the hallway, and asked if she would let me set up my own table(s) out there.'re going to have a cake and pie bar around the corner and that might restrict flow out there. All in all, she just plain wasn't going to change her mind. She suggested that I leave my name and they'd sent me an application for next year. I remained polite, thanked her, said goodbye to Pat and another friend, and walked out to my car.

Once I got to my car, I got one of my business cards out to take back in to her, and when I walked back in the ladies were once again huddled in conversation. One saw me and said (almost as if to notify the others of my presence), "Oh...she must have had a card!" So I left my card and came home.

I'm not happy about this. I'm not upset with Pat as I don't feel it was her fault. But I think the church women should have considered this is a money making thing for their women's group, there truly was plenty of space, and I offered to pay full booth fee for even a hallway space. Someone near to me suggested I should have asked, "What Would Jesus Do?" Too much, huh?

Anyway, so the rest of the evening has been spent looking for another craft fair somewhere tomorrow. So far, nothing. There's one at Anthony...but that's 70 miles away...and I didn't even call to see if I could get a booth, because this is deer rutting season and I don't want to drive 70 miles pre-8 am!

I'm just disappointed!!! Oh well...I have another show at the local tanning salon Wednesday of this next week...and so far, they've been really good. Hopefully the next one will be as well.

This weekend is supposed to be gorgeous so maybe I'll get in a bicycle ride or some yard work (that's a waste of time...Sir Sycamore isn't nearly done dropping it's leaves!!). Enjoy your weekend...and count your blessings!! (I'm trying...)

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Check It Out!

A friend sent me a link to this's hilarious! If you have kids or grandkids or know some picky-eater kids, you gotta try this. This would have made a great Halloween lunch! Take a look: