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Monday, August 30, 2010

My Dear Trash Goes Live! Episode 1

Laura and I have had so many emails asking for advice about selling on ebay, we thought we'd try our hand at videography. Seeing that we're both stay at home moms to many little ones, it was quite a chore to get ready for our first broadcast. Here's my daughter, a professional make-up artist, giving Laura a few touch-ups.
We'd like to keep the videos short, but share a few brands, starting prices and eventually show you how we ship. We'd love to hear what you think of episode one. Is it helpful? Boring? You can't wait to see the next one? Please be honest, but kind. Let's try and get 50 comments on this so we really get a feel for what you'd like to see. Hope you enjoy. Love, Kelly & Laura

Young Adult Novels are worth paying full price for

I don't pay full price for many things, but Mocking Jay, a Young Adult novel by author Suzanne Collins is a worth paying full price for.

Yeah, I admit I’m a reader of Young Adult(YA); a YA junkie if you will.  I’m almost forty, so I hope that’s alright.

“In Defense of Grown Women Reading Y.A. Literature” journalist Emily Gordon writes

“Young Adult lit is escapist, but beyond that, for women who constantly evaluate every situation from all angles and lament that none of their choices seem clear-cut, a good old-fashioned black-and-white struggle is soothing. Our lives are adult literature, so why on Earth would we want to entertain ourselves with adult literature?" 
Click here to read more

So, now that we’re all on the same page, I must say I devoured the first two books of The Hunger Games Trilogy.  My ten-year old son Chandler decided to read them too.  We bonded over blood, guts and death.  We also bonded over amazing writing. 
That Suzanne Collins not only has the most spectacular imagination, but she is quite the writer.   
As a wanna-be-writer dreaming of publication, I have a little confession.
What is it about The Hunger Games Trilogy that leaves me feeling like I am the fuddy-duddiest writer out there? 
Like I just fell in the mud face first. 

Like I’m wearing two left mix-matched shoes.
If Suzanne Collin’s novel is written for the young adult audience, then my novel is so 3rd grade.
If Mocking Jay is as good as Hunger Games and Catching Fire, than I’m doomed because I don’t think I have it in me to go that deep.
That’s what I feel great writing is; going somewhere others haven’t braved to go.  I’m talking mentally, of course, challenging your mind to work overtime.
That’s how I felt when I read Stephenie Meyer’s The Host

Who goes there?   

Who thinks like that?

Great writers do.
But they are plenty of times I read a book (I won’t give away any titles, that wouldn’t be very nice) and think “Well, why is that book published and not mine?”
Why do we compare ourselves to others?  Why do we care?

Is it human nature?  Do we think we have to be “as good as?”
I look up to writers like a little kid looks up to his teachers.  I have such admiration for the accomplishment of publication that I can almost taste it.
I had the chance to meet author Jay Asher when he spoke at a literary conference in New York.
His first YA novel Thirteen Reasons Why is a literary success, making the New York Times best selling list.
Jay’s speech was titled “How to Get Published in 12 Years Or Less”.   
Basically, he went through the past 12 years of his life and shared all the rejection, heart ache and desperation.  He did this with the most sincere sense of humor I’ve ever heard.  Such a sad story (with a happy ending) had the audience crying through our laughter.    He lightened up a room full of uptight, insecure unpublished authors and reminded us that writing is about going to a place that is exciting for you.  Pushing yourself, working hard and most importantly, enjoying the small successes along the way.
I paid full price for his book too.  It was worth every penny.
I can’t wait to read Mocking Jay.  I’m sure it will inspire me to keep writing because every story is worth telling, even if it doesn't include blood, guts and death.
Linking up to:

Jenny Matlock

This weeks Garaging Finds

Another fabulous weekend, let's take a look...Now for some prices...
This metal lamp with fun feather trim shade was just $2.00. The set of 3 metal stars $5.00 (they still have the original price tags on back and were $40.00 new) and what is that little gem in front of the stars? A cheese dome! I redid one of these a while back, you can see it here, and have been looking for another one ever since. It was $2.00. There's also a little wood box from pier 1 imports. Inside are two new decks of cards and 6 wood dice for .50.
I love these New York and Rome pictures. They have really nice heavy frames and the original price tags of $39.99 each on the back. I paid $2.50 each. The red lantern light is electric and will look great outside, it was $1.00.
A MONOPOLY Game! So excited because this is a new theme for me: Looney Tunes. That means eight new metal game pieces for my collection. I paid $1.00. The "K" initial is for a project I'm working on- it was $1.00 and the fluer de lis picture frame was $1.00.
This bear is part of the Boyd Bear investment collectibles- I paid $10.00, which may seem like a ton to some of you, but I'm a Boyd Bear collector and this guy cost $175.00 new- I had to have him for my collection.
The three tied wire holder thingies were purchased at two separate garage sales for $1.00 each. I'm not sure what I'll do with them, but two is always better than one, right? The vintage looking metal flour container was .50.
These cute little enamel bowls were $1.00 for the set and the square glass jar was $1.00. Now, I'm going to confess something about my past that may seem shocking. It may actually ruin my credibility with you, my fellow blog readers (If I had any credibility to begin with) Many years ago I was a Tupperware sales person. I know, I know, shocking! I sold the famous plastic for a little over two years and in the process became a manager and even earned a Tupperware mini-van (you get to drive it as long as you keep selling) I really do love their products and used some of my profits to buy the modular mates containers for my pantry. They are quite expensive, but keep baking supplies and snacks fresh. I was just thinking I needed a few more containers when I saw a big box at a yard sale this weekend. I could see a few of the modular mate sizes I needed so I asked how much. The guy says, $10.00 for the whole box. It was a big box and these modular mates can run as much as $20.00 each, new- but I still had to offer $5. The wife replies, "I can't go any lower than $8. SOLD. Here's what was in the box...
A plithera of modular mates- 40 to be exact. That's less than .25 each. I've already washed and filled some of these with our favorite snacks, there are several that I'll resale- probably enough to pay for the box and make a nice little profit. I just love garage sales. However, this was not my most profitable purchase this weekend. Take a look at the next photo...
Although it appears to be my laundry piling up, these are actually the clothes I purchased this weekend at sales. At one particular sale Mr. Right found a Lane Bryant suit coat and called my attention to it (I just love that man). As I started to look through the boxes of clothes- most of which were Lane Bryant plus size (such a good seller on ebay) the owner came over and annouced that all the clothes were 10 cents!!!!!! I couldn't believe it. I even found a new with tags denim skirt- origianl price 49.50. I picked up 26 items for $2.60. Again, gotta love garage sales. I'm going to try and keep track of these 26 items and see just how much I make on ebay over the next few weeks. I'll keep you posted. Hope you found great finds too. Love, Kelly.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Front Door Friday: The Finale

Through-out the summer we've been working on the front of our house. I've shown you six projects we've done and now I'm ready to show the overall after photos. If you missed the previous posts go here: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6. Our house started out yellow with white trim and shutters and red doors.
We painted the exterior including the doors, shutters, trim and block walls. With the addition of a few decorating projects here's the finish look...A little wider angle...The whole enchilada...
Did you see my little horse I made in the very right corner of the picture? Here's a closer look...
I love turning the corner to my house and seeing the transformation. I wish I could show you the before, before's when we bought the house 8 years ago. We completely dug up the entire yard to bring in irrigation and started with a blank dirt lot. We began by installing the brick sidewalk and surround and have added the trees and plants over the years. Unfortunately, I just killed my laptop which had all my pictures from the last 8 years- it was caught in a rainstorm on the way back from girls camp. No worries, the hard drive is at a recovery center and hopefully they will be able to retrieve most of our information (for a fee a course) For now though, I hope you've enjoyed Front Door Friday- can't wait to show you what I'm gonna work on next! Love, Kelly

Linking Up To:
Frugalicious Friday@ Finding Fabulous
Follow Me Fridays @ Trendy Treehouse
Remodelaholic Anonymous @ Remodelaholic
Feature Yourself Friday @ Fingerprints On My Fridge
It's A Hodgepodge Friday@ It's A Hodgepodge Life
Friday Fun Finds @ KOJO Design
I'm Lovin' It @ Tidymom
What I Made This Week @ Simply Designing
I'm A Creative Cat @ Poppies At Play
Show And Tell Friday @ Romantic Home
Frugal Friday @ The Shabby Nest
Spring Has Sprung @ Fun To Craft
Furniture Feature Friday @ Miss Mustard Seed
Favorite Things Friday @ A Few Of My Favorite Things
Plant A Pumkin Seed Party @ Pumkin Seed Productions
New Friend Friday @ The Girl Creative

I Just Don't Get It . . . The Scene of the Grime

It doesn’t happen very often, so when it does
Everyone is happy.
Well, almost everyone.
When it rains, our favorite park turns into a flood wash
and quickly fills up with water.
Someone’s down, while another speeds by.
I do get how rain brings out the inner speed-racing
tree-branch sword-fighting
and overall adorable water loving part of my children,
but this, THIS I just don’t get.
Laurie over at The Scene of the Grime found this piece of trash,
An old worn-out falling-apart wood bench.
Image found here.
She had an idea and went with it.
Image found here.
Now, she’s able to enjoy her garden
that much more.
Image found here.
Brilliant, for sure.
Thanks for sharing Laurie.
Visit The Scene of the Grime for more great ideas.

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Thursday, August 26, 2010

A Cute Little Table with A Story

Remember the table I picked up at an estate sale this weekend for $10.00? Here's a picture to refresh your memory...Even Mr. Right thought I was a little crazy for wanting this one- Its' finish was in such bad condition he knew I would need to sand it down to bare wood (not one of my favorite things to do when there's spindles) But somehow this little table had a story. While waiting in line for the estate sale to open, we learned that the owner had 8 children. Her husband had passed away with cancer and then she too was diagnosed with cancer and recently passed away. Her children want to keep the house (a beautiful victorian) so they needed to sell the contents to raise some money. Such a sad story- this is one reason I don't frequent estate sales. When entering the house you could immediately see this was a busy mom. Each room had been creatively decorated in shabby chic/country/victorian style. They even had a full soda fountain in one room. When you entered her office you could almost see where her life had been put on hold for the trials she was going through. She evidently was an active online seller and had an Etsy store. Her invoice holders and items to be shipped containers were still in place on a large bulletin board. This super mom had so many craft supplies they had to be displayed in two rooms for the sale. As I entered the garage this little table just stared up at me. If it could talk I think it would have said something like, "Please take me home and make me beautiful. My previous owner was going to fix me all up, but then she got sick and couldn't do it anymore." I felt an overwhelming need to finish this project for this kindred spirit. So Mr. Right loaded her up and I went to sanding. Here she is after a few hours of sanding- stripped clear down to the bare wood.
I loved working on this piece. I always feel a sense of accomplishment when a project gets finished, but this little piece was even more satisfying. Take a look and see what you think...
A little closer...
One of my greatest fears is that a day will come that I won't be able to finish some of the projects I've started. I just hope, when that day comes, that my pieces will speak and someone will scoop them up, take them home and make them beautiful. Love, Kelly.

Linking Up To:
Get Your Craft On Thursday @ Life As Lori
Transformation Thursday @ The Shabby Chic Cottage
Strut Your Stuff @ Somewhat Simple
Show Off Your Stuff @ Fireflies And Jellybeans
Thrifty Thursday @ Tales Of Bloggeritaville
Hooking Up W/HoH @ House Of Hepworths
I Made It @ Everything Etsy
The Colorado Lady - Vintage Thingie Thursday
Show And Tell @ Blue Cricket Designs

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Trash to Cash Wednesday

Incredible Ebay Week!!!! Let's take a look at some of the top sellers...As much as we all don't get it, denim overalls are a great seller on ebay. However, they do take a back seat during the summer. These S.L.A. size L denim cargo overalls didn't sell the first few weeks, now that it's cooling off (In some areas of the World) they sold for $10.00.
These Old Navy size M denim overalls sold for $12.50. But, don't forget how well dress sell...This Tahari size XS black wrap dress sold for $15.50. Now, let's talk about some new name brands. My sister asked me to list a few items for her. This Belldini size XL animal print knit top sold for $10.47

Now you know I don't usually sell men's clothing on ebay, but here's a few more items I listed for my sister. This men's Polo by Ralph Lauren size M argyle sweater sold for $16.99

I had never heard of Fred Perry before, but my sister and her husband love vintage clothing and this is a hit in that crowd. This size XL Fred Perry Polo Shirt sold for $25.00.
Another new brand to me, this Nat Nast size M silk jacket sold for $39.99. Hopefully this gives everyone a few new names to look for. So, I said it was an incredible week- Let's take a look...

Ebay Sales: $759.74 (This is definitely a new record)
I did have a cost of $150 for the clothing items I listed, but this is still an amazing profit. I'm a little behind on calculating my ebay and paypal fees- but I'll make sure I get it all up to date for next week. Hope this motivates those of you contemplating becoming an ebay seller- This is a great time with school shopping, change of season and you can list up to 100 items free until Sept. 7. I'll be starting a new challenge in January for our latest family vacation- can't wait to tell you about it. In the meantime, my profits will be paying for a new computer, piano lessons for 2 of my girls, college admission application fees for my 17 year old, and life. Love, Kelly.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Ebay, I love you and Follow the Golden Grahah Cash - Week 8

Oh, EBAY.  How I love you.

So, how am I doing with Follow the Golden Graham Cash?
 I found 5 more articles of clothing at Goodwill on $dollar day and paid for them with the $5.00 Discover Gift Card I won in a box of Golden Grahams.
I have to admit, I enjoy watching what happens each week too.  Selling trash I buy for "free" on EBay is so much like gambling.  
I'm an addict.
This Women's Chico's Size 3 XL Linen Knee Length Black Dress sold for $8.99.  It might be a little out dated, but it's still a Chico's Linen Dress.
                                     It's a bit last decade, but it's clean and full of summer potential. It sold for $6.99.
Can you believe I paid $1.00 for these Venezia NWT $49 Plus Size 18 Wide Leg Trouser Jeans.  I felt they should be posted at $14.99 and that's what they sold for.
The color chocolate brown was very "in" last season.  Is it still?  I think so.  These Women's Gap Size 12 Long Chocolate Brown Khakis Pants sold for $8.99.  Plus, it helped that they were a long.
 Why did these Women's Ralph Lauren Polo NWT Size 8 Tan Cargo Shorts not sale?  I find shorts have slowed down for now, so I'll store these away for next spring. 
So, what did I make this week?
Once I subtract the $5.00 for next weeks purchases, I made $34.96.
What have I made in total?
The counselor and I are saving up to go to Sedona next month for our 12 year wedding anniversary.  
Now that's a worthy goal.
To see last weeks post, click here.

Am I an Official Stocker?

This past May I went to an amazing garage sale. You can see what I bought here. I was talking with the seller, because everything she had, I loved, and I discovered she worked at an antique mall that was getting ready to close its doors after 17 years. We visited for a few minutes then she invited me in to her home to show me a few more things she was selling. Her home was decorated beautifully with antiques and many items I love and also collect. However, it was one item in particular that caught me eye. In her kitchen she had a metal horse silhouette hanging on her wall. Of course this piece wasn't for sale, but I did learn that she bought it at a yard sale years before. I really enjoyed my visit, paid for my purchases and headed home. As many of you know I've been re-decorating my front porch- It's been a work in progress most of the summer. Well, that night I couldn't stop thinking about that horse. It would look so good as part of my front porch. Then I got an idea. The next morning I asked Mr. Right if he remembered where the house was- unfortunately, he couldn't- and either could I. The next weekend when we went garaging I kept my eyes peeled for a clue. Maybe, I'd see something that would trigger my memory. No such luck. After whinning about this for a few weeks my husband reminded me that the garage seller, "Lisa" worked at an antique store that we were both familiar with. "Just call the store, you know her name." Mr. Right suggested. "Would that be too stalker like" I asked. Mr. Right knows that when I want something I'll do anything to get it and something trivial, like the label STALKER, wouldn't deter me. Then I remembered she said the store was closing. I quickly googled the stores website and discovered it was closing that day! "We have to go in" I pleaded. So Mr. Right and I drove to the store, found Lisa, and made our request. (Thank heavens she remembered me) "Do you think I could come over and photograph your horse?" She looked at me a little strangely. "I want to use it as a pattern so I can recreate it in wood" "Sure" she responds. She gives me her address and phone number and I leave a happy camper! That was the end of May. It's taken all summer- between my vacations and Lisa's schedule to connect up and get my photograph. I know you're dying to see this amazing horse that caused me to put all my scruples aside. Well, here you go...This pieces is made of metal and has copper tubing that outlines it. It's all rivited and was used to by an interior designer to decorate a clients space in a American folk Art style. The client hated the entire room and held a garage sale. She paid over $300 for this piece and sold it for $15 to my friend Lisa. After a wonderful visit with Lisa, I came home and got to work. Here's my handy overhead projector. I printed the image on a transparancy and used my projector to make the image 2 feet tall and 4 feet wide to match the original...
I used a pencil and traced it on a piece of 1/2" MDF.
Mr. Right cut it out for me.
After a few layers of paint (first white, then black) and a little distressing, here she is all ready for her place on the porch...On my last Front Porch Friday post I explained how I was waiting on one more project before the big reveal- This was that project. So, this Friday I will reveal my new front porch. Can't wait to see what you think. My question to you... Was it worth it? If I'm forever labeled as a STALKER, was it for a worthy cause? Or am I the only one that see's this piece as an amazing work of art? Let me know what you think. Love, Kelly.

Linking Up To:
Anything Related @ All Thingz Related
Table Top Tuesdays @ A Stroll Thru Life
Get Your Craft On @ Today's Creative Blog
Trash To Treasure Tuesday @ Reinvented
Tip Me Tuesday @ Tip Junky
Take A Look Tuesday @ Craft Edition
Three Or More Tuesday @ The Gypsy's Corner
Anti-Procrastionation Tuesdays @ New Nostalgia
Nifty Thrifty Tuesdays @ Coastal Charm
Lucky Link Tuesday @ Lucky Star Lane