Monday, May 30, 2011

What a weekend

It started with the Clearance Sale which went very well. Thanks again to all who came!

But as my sister & I were closing up, Kevin called. He was sick, and his throat was swelling rather rapidly. He almost died from a bee sting 2 years ago - he went into anaphylatic shock, which among other things, cut off his breathing. So now, understandably, he is very sensitive to the feeling of not being able to breathe.

He knew this was something different, but what? It wasn't exactly an emergency, but he did feel it was urgent. He called the doctor, and they had already closed for the weekend. Why do these things always happen over a holiday?

To make a very long story short, I took him to the emergency room. The doc wasn't sure what was wrong, but put him on penicillin. We came home, Kevin took a pill, and then spent a very restless night getting progressively worse. We spent Sunday afternoon in a different ER, where we had a loooooooooooong wait in the waiting room. But while there, he started feeling better. Much better.

To make another long story short, we think he may be allergic to penicillin. Once it wore off, he got better. The doc there also thought he needed an antibiotic, but he switched it from penicillin to another one, and also gave him a steroid shot. Tonight, he is almost back to his old self. We're still not sure what started the whole thing, they said it may have been a virus that's going around. His resistance is low right now (too much work and not enough sleep lately), so it may have socked him a good one.

When Jessica came home for the weekend, she didn't have sitting in an ER waiting room on her to-do list, but never-the-less, that's what she did. I have to admit, it was nice having her there with me!

Then today, after we had a holiday lunch, we took a walk to see the new baby goats at the neighbor's barn. While there, I announced that my hay fever allergies are much better now. That I may even have outgrown them.

Uh-huh. Just a few minutes later, I had an attack.

Oh well, those things happen. We're thankful that Kevin is better. We're thankful that Jessica and Brian made it back to their own home safely, and that Jessica is liking her new job. We're thankful that my sister and her husband were able to join us today. We're thankful that friends who were traveling today had safe trips.

And we're thankful that we live in a beautiful country that values it's freedom. We're thankful that we have a strong military who is willing to protect us. And we pray that God will bless those men and women, and their families. And we strive to be grateful to them - not just on Memorial Day, but every day.


Saturday, May 28, 2011

Clearance Sale Results and...I need advice from you!

Our first upstairs Clearance Sale is over, & I'm happy to say it went very, very well! Yay!
Lots of people got lots of stuff. Yay!
And when they saw the prices - what do you think they said? Yep, they said "Yay!"

THANK YOU TO ALL WHO CAME!!!


Some asked, "Are you going out of business?"
No, we aren't. This was just a way to sell extra's, & things that had sat too long.
Simply a clearance sale.

Others asked, "Are you going to open the upstairs for sales more often? Every year? In the fall? Next week?"

That one is a little tougher to answer. We will do it again. How often? Hmmm, maybe once a year, or maybe spring and fall. Probably this fall.

And that is where I need your input. I would love to hear from you concerning this. When do YOU think a good time to have a fall clearance sale upstairs would be?


September? October? November?
On a Friday? Saturday? 
Just one day? Both days? 
Maybe Friday evening & Saturday morning?
How about the day of the Christmas parade? 
Or Black Friday? 
Or should it be held on it's own day?

Really, I would LOVE to get some input on this.
Feel free to email me at countrylanecrafts@comcast.net

Or leave a comment here.
Or on facebook.
Which reminds me, some people asked where to watch for info on another sale. The best place is here on the blog, and on facebook. I would like to have more followers on facebook, so I can reach more people with news on sales etc.

I would really appreciate it if you would help me spread the word. If you would suggest to your facebook friends to "like" me, I would be eternally in your debt. Or something like that. Anyway, I would appreciate it!

It's been a long couple of weeks getting ready for the sale, and now, I'm pretty much exhausted. Tonight, I may go to bed really early. It's a good night to "go to bed with the chickens"!


Only I'm too tired to hang on to a roost. I think I'll just sleep in my comfy bed!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Clearance Sale Mini Preview

The Clearance Sale is tomorrow morning from 9-1. UPSTAIRS!


These pics are just a sampling of what's up there.


Lots of crafts, lots of antiques.


Prices are truly clearance prices!


We have 5 rooms full of treasures.
I hope to see you in the morning!

The main store will be open too.

A huge thanks to Katie & Jo for helping me set up!!!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

New stuff and a clearance sale keeps one busy

No pictures yet..........I can't seem to get the time. I've been getting lots of new stuff in. The old stuff all has to be cleaned, inventoried and tagged. The new stuff has to be unpacked, inventoried and tagged. This is all quite time consuming, along with rearranging what's already on the floor to accomodate the new stuff.

And in the midst of all this, I'm pulling stuff off the floor to put upstairs for the clearance sale. That all has to be UN-inventoried, and UN-tagged so to speak. Or rather re-priced, with a much lower clearance sale price.

I just haven't had time to take pictures, upload and edit them, download them to the blog or facebook, then write a bit about them. I keep carrying the camera.......maybe today!

The upstairs is coming together quite nicely - lots up there for the CLEARANCE SALE this Saturday morning, from 9-1. If it doesn't rain, there will be a few furniture pieces outside marked down too.

Hopefully I can get some pictures up before the sale to give you an idea of the things that will be up there. No promises, but I'll try! I'd like to actually go home and eat supper some evening - I've been working upstairs just about every evening for the last several days.

Does that sound like I'm whining?
I'm not. Nope. Not at all.

Well..................maybe just a teeny-weeny bit.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Busy, busy, busy

George and I went scouting for antiques yesterday. (AKA "junking")

It's funny how when we go, we usually seem to find several of a particular thing. Yesterday it was old wood boxes and porch chairs. Both good things to find! And a cool little mustard color table, along with some other odds and ends.

Pictures next week after I get them cleaned up. I hope to have them out on the floor by Monday afternoon.

Also getting shipments in on some imported stuff. Not as much fun as antiques, but a necessary part of the store inventory.

And....I have several craft projects started, and many more planned.

And......... still getting ready for the clearance sale on May 28th from 9-1 upstairs.

And..............we're getting a couple dry days, so we're trying to get some planting done in our garden.

Whew!!! Busy, busy, busy!!!

It's a good thing I'm sleeping good at night!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

And more Clearance Sale prep

I always tease George that anything he works on will take twice as much time as he predicted. (and twice as much money too!)

Well, getting ready for this Sale is taking me 10 times longer than I thought it would!!! I had taken lots of stuff upstairs during the winter, but didn't take the time to put the sale prices on it. We don't heat it up there, and I just couldn't talk myself into going up there in the cold.

I'm putting stuff in 5 rooms. And I'm beginning to think I have rearranged things so much that each piece has seen each room. It's not going to be all nicely put together like the main store downstairs. But still, it has to have some sort of semblance of order!

I've been marking tags. Cheap. Think yard sale prices.

I've spent the last 2 evenings up there, and have been coming in early and going up there before I open. I'll be working on it again this evening. Tomorrow we hope to go junking if it doesn't rain too much. We need some "new" old stuff.

Mark your calendar for the sale - Saturday morning, May 28. From 9-1.  UPSTAIRS.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

More Clearance Sale prep

I took the camera upstairs to get some pics of the clearance sale stuff, but didn't have time to use it. I'm a bit swamped right now getting ready for it.

I did lots of rearranging last night of the bigger pieces, now I can concentrate more on smalls.

The shop may start looking a bit empty the next couple of weeks. I'm taking more out, carrying it up the stairs, and adding it to the sale. There's lots of things here that have over-stayed their welcome! They are getting the boot!

I have new things ordered, and I want to make room for them. And, George and I are hoping to "go junking" this Friday. I'm almost afraid to say that out loud. Every time we plan it, the skies open, the rain falls, and we cancel. Maybe we'll have better luck this time!

Remember - the Clearance Sale will be UPSTAIRS on Saturday, May 28 from 9-1.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Getting ready for the clearance sale

What a crazy spring! So much rain - if only we could save some for the dry summer that's bound to come.

And it's been a cold spring too. We've had a few warm days, even a couple hot ones. Now it's cold again. We're having typical March days right now - only problem is.........it's mid May.

Well, we can't fight Mother Nature, so I'm going to take advantage of it. After I close the store this evening, I'm going upstairs. There's still lots to do to get ready for the big clearance sale coming up Saturday, May 28 from 9 - 1.

It will be too wet to work outside in the garden at home. The perfect evening to get ready for the sale.

There will be lots more details to come in the following days.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Country Life = Teenage Chickens

Remember our little baby peeps?

Well, they are teenage pullets now - they grew so fast! 
Their world has expanded again, into a run built outside the coop.
When their little door is opened in the morning, there's a mad dash down the ramp.




Once the first bunch gets out of the way, the stragglers start their descent.


They take their time, enjoying the smell of the fresh air.


One stays behind, not quite ready to start the day.
Waiting perhaps on a second cup of coffee.
(Just kidding)



There's so much to do!
Grass to be plucked.
Bugs to be pecked.
Ramps to be walked down.
Ramps to be walked up.
And, holes to stick your head through..............



Let me tell you, if you get tired of sitting on the couch watching TV, get some chickens.
I didn't particularly want to get chickens, but I admit, they are highly entertaining!


I like to watch them as they go about their business of the day.
And they seem to feel the same about us, they don't miss a thing we do.

I thought I'd be sneaky and take some pictures from their little door.


But they don't miss a trick.


"Hey! What are you doing in our door?"

Oh! I almost forgot - one day one of the girls started crowing.
As in cock-a-doodle-dooing.

Uh-Oh. They were supposed to all be girls.

It turns out you can't assume that a young chicken is a boy if it crows.
Some young hens aren't satisfied just to cluck, & will experiment with crowing.
We read that around 3 or 4 months old, we should know for sure.

Oh boy. No boys allowed.
This could get interesting.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Country life = finally some dry days

I haven't had time to post the last couple of days, and it just occurred to me that since my last post was on the the invasion of the flies, you might think I really had packed and moved to the polar ice caps!

But I didn't, I'm still here. The last couple of days have been dry here for the most part. We've had a couple showers, but nothing that didn't dry out relatively quickly. We've been taking advantage of it, and have spent a good bit of time planting our garden, putting some finishing touches on the chicken coop, and some other odd jobs that have been delayed because of the very wet spring we've been having.

I always say I would rather it be too wet than too dry. But that's easy for me to say, since I don't live next to a creek.

While it's been fairly dry at our house the last couple of days, it's been storming all around us. There's been lots of flash flooding. And of course we hear every day about the slow flooding on the mighty Mississippi. My heart goes out to all who are facing flooding, and the clean-up afterwards.

I thought about snapping some pictures tonight of what we've been working on, but to be honest, I was too tired to go inside and get the camera! Maybe tomorrow.

And...I'm happy to report that the fly invasion is not as invasive as it was. There's still a few, but as long as I open the door for awhile, they fly out for the most part. And, I still have my trusty tissues, for those that are drawn to death by tissue. Strange, strange flies.

But now we are having a mini invasion at home, by big ants. We've killed 20 or so on the kitchen counter, but can't find a trail. George sprayed around the foundation, hopefully that works.

Remember how cold it was last winter? Isn't there a saying about a cold winter killing off the bugs? So much for that theory!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

City life = The Invasion


If you have read my blog much, you may have noticed that many of my post titles start with Country Life =. These are usually about something going on with our life in the country.

Well, I'm calling this one City Life = The Invasion. Why?
Because the store is being invaded............by flies.


You've probably heard the story of the Town Mouse and the Country Mouse.
Well, let me tell you, there's a difference between Town Flies and Country Flies.
I hate to be disrespectful of all you town folks, but your Town Flies are not too bright.

I've never had a problem with flies in the store before. Oh sure, the occasional fly would get it in, buzz around for a few hours, then get either a swat from me, or an escort out the door, where it would happily fly away to new adventures.

But these flies - these flies are strange. Very strange.


It started last week. A couple big flies showed up, hovering in the front window. If I walked around the store, they flew at me, and then hovered close by, but just out of reach. Like they were giving me some kind of warning.

                          
A day or 2 later, there were more. But now they pretty much stayed in the windows. I knew it was getting out of hand when a dear lady said, "You have quite the collection of flies up here". Oh yeah, that's good for business.


I don't have a fly swatter at the store, I never really needed one. I've always been amazed that I could prop the front door open on nice days, and nary a fly would come in.


So, I folded up a newpaper, and started swatting. I got a couple, but most got away. Later that day, I was talking to a customer, and just as she looked away, a fly hit me right between the eyes. Smack! I was so glad she didn't see it. Another case of oh yeah, that's good for business.

Then I made a very odd discovery. I could put a tissue in my hand, and sneak up behind the fly. I usually couldn't kill it there, but it would then go down the window to the sill right above the floor. I could easily chase it with the tissue into a corner, and smash it.


I've been spending big chunks of my day on that rug, cornering flies at the bottom of the door. I've tried being nice - I have opened the door to let them out. But as I already mentioned, these flies are strange.

Very strange. If I open the door, THEY WON'T GO OUT!!! I've forced some out, and do you know what they did? THEY FLEW BACK IN!!!


Okay then. If they prefer death by tissue, I'm up for that. Some go to the display window to the left of the door. It's a little trickier. As you can see, I have to work around some furniture legs.


The display window on the right side of the door is trickier yet. See all those window frames in front of the display window? They lean against it. 


So, I gently lean them forward. (you can read a much more pleasant story about the windows here)


That exposes the window sill. (What's that crack across the window you say? Ask George - he'd probably love to tell you the story of the day he broke it. Hee hee.)


And on the window sill, I will find flies. Flies that are oddly attracted to death by tissue.

I'll kill a dozen or so at a time. That's all there appears to be.

And then....

About an hour later, I'll casually walk up to the windows. Where I will see about a dozen flies. Who are waiting to be cornered. Who will then become victims of the tissue.

What kind of weird flies are these?

I did a quick google research, and found some interesting & alarming facts on Orkin's website.

Did you know...

For every fly seen, there are an estimated 19 more hidden from view.

Oh great. That could explain why I only see a dozen at a time. But wait a minute, that means for each one in that dozen, there are 19 more. An hour later I see another dozen. And for each of them, there are 19 more. An hour later I see another dozen. And for each of them.......

I think I need a calculator.

And, did you know...

One pair of flies can produce more than 1 million offspring in as little as six to eight weeks.

Oy.

And, did you know...

Flies plague every part of the world except the polar ice caps.

Well, I've got to go. An hour has passed, so it's time to get another tissue and go hunting again.

Then I have to pack.

If you need me, I'll be at the polar ice caps.


I may not have to go after all! I think I found the trick. I propped the door open for a couple hours. I checked every so often, and the flies were gone.

Apparently, if I FORCE them out the door, they rebel and come right back in. But if I prop open the door, and walk away, they think it's THEIR idea, and they go out. Maybe they are teenage flies.

In the country, we have screen doors to keep flies outside. But I guess here in the big city, I need an unscreened door so they will go outside. The things you learn...

I'm so glad I don't have to go to the polar ice caps. They are absolutely beautiful, but I was really looking forward to warmer weather.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Display pieces


This is a full sheet (4x8) of gray vinyl lattice, attached to the wall.
We also have smaller pieces attached to the wall as well.


This is wood lattice, dry brushed white.
George framed & hinged 2 pieces together, so it's free-standing.
We used to take it to craft shows, back when we had time to go to craft shows.


This wood trellis used to be in our yard.
The bottom rotted off, so George just squared it up & attached it to the wall.

Under it is an old ironing board.
I keep several on hand - they're great to pull out in a hurry when a piece of furniture sells.
These are also great to use at home for a make-shift buffet when company comes.


This is a...it's a...well, I don't really know what it is.
When the elderly gentleman who lived out back passed on, his son gave it to me.
He said his dad had used it to store his coffee mugs.

Funny story about it.
At first, I tried to sell it.
No one......no one at all...was interested.

I started using it as a display piece.
Yep, you guessed it, now several people have asked to buy it.
But for now, it's not for sale...I like using it for a display piece.

And, it reminds me of the gentleman who used to own it, & it makes me smile.

Notice it's sitting on another old wooden ironing board.



We think this desk used to be a dorm room desk.
It has shelves on opposite ends, & drawers on opposite sides.

Lots of people have wanted to buy it too, but I've hung on to it for a display piece.


We also have a few wood bookcases we keep for display pieces.


For more shelving, we stretched some boards across the steps of 2 stepladders.
Quick, rustic and primitve shelving!


George built this shelving unit using 2 old shutters for the ends.
You can see that he just screwed wood pieces onto the inside of the shutter,
then placed boards on those to make the shelves.


We got the idea of hinging 3 doors together from another store.
We asked if they minded if we used their idea, and they graciously agreed.


Right now, we have vintage baby clothes displayed on one side of the doors.
Look closely at what some of the clothes are hanging on.
It's the bottom of a baby crib - the part the mattress laid on.
I just use clothespins to clip the booties etc. onto the wire.


Speaking of clothes...
Yes, I realize these table runners are not clothing.
But, they are hanging on a vintage clothes dryer.
No electric necessary.


This iron stand is......well, again, I don't know what it is.
There were 5 or 6 of them in the building when we bought it.
We have no clue what they were for, but I use them for displaying all sorts of things.


A close-up of the top of it.
Maybe it was a candle holder?


I know this one is hard to see.
I put a small branch with lots of twigs on it in a crock.
From the little twigs, I hang necklaces.

How's that for a primitive jewelry box?
I've also seen old garden rakes mounted on the wall, with the tines facing out.
Jewelry hangs from the tines.

I may try that one of these days, but for now...
all our garden rakes get used in the garden!

Monday, May 9, 2011

Country life = Chickens and Turkeys

This morning, before coming into the store, I went to the coop to feed the chickens. It was a glorious morning, and I had a spare half hour, so I decided to plant some lettuce & spinach in the raised bed my dad had built behind his house - the house where Kevin now lives beside us.


As always, Billy came along. (Cats are supposed to be independant, but Billy didn't get the memo).

I was planting seeds under Billy's careful supervision when I noticed he got distracted. I also noticed a clucking sound coming from the opposite direction of the coop. Toward the lane...


I didn't have the camera with me, and probably couldn't have got close enough anyway, but strolling down the lane were 5 or 6 turkeys.


I was seeing them through the trees, but they looked alot like these ones, only they weren't in a group like this. Rather, they were walking single file down the road, like they didn't have a care in the world.


I hear turkeys almost every morning, usually from a different direction. But since it was such a glorious morning, they must have decided to go sight-seeing!

Billy and I just watched them for a couple minutes till they were out of sight, listening to them cluck or yelp or whatever it was the hens were doing. On the other side of us, we listened to the chickens pecking and scratching. And we listened to their peeps giving way to clucks as they are growing up.

And that will lead to another blog post about the chickens later in the week.
Stay tuned.......

And on a side note: (back to the business side of the blog)

Congratulations to Betty Hetrick of Moundsville!!! She won the door prize at the May First Friday & Saturday Event! The next Event will be June 3 & 4.

And don't forget, there will be a large clearance sale UPSTAIRS on May 28 from 9-1. That's Memorial Day weekend.

Broken Window

It started with a crack in the glass. Never a good thing when you are talking about plate glass. I called the wi...