A Sweet Deal

This past week we only had two estate sales so I was able to keep up with my estate sale duties while still having time to work on the jewelry. All of the pieces I polished have been priced and some of them were put into circulation last weekend. As usual, rings are the hot commodity but reasonably priced earrings are running a close second. Mother kindly polished a batch of silver for me and I was able to price those pieces as well. We have two wonderful sales coming up next week in Lake Forest and Park Ridge and I want to be prepared!

Also, Melinda's estate sale friend is having a big sale in a Phoenix suburb the weekend after next which is not in the area she normally works. It is still a 55+ community but the home is really loaded and will hopefully attract customers with disposable income. She is making room for two cases of jewelry and I will prepare a box of new to them Southwest Style pieces to send their way. Our season for this type of jewelry is ending while in Arizona the high temperatures will make their way below 100 degrees on average and more estate sale fans will come out. It is getting close to their estate sale season kickoff. She is going to try a 5-day sale from Tuesday-Saturday, with afternoon hours on Tuesday to accommodate those who work during the week. I am excited for the opportunity and to see how the jewelry will be received outside of the Sun City area. It has sold well there considering folks are on a fixed income but I think other areas have the potential to do even better.

I did not post a jewelry lot Sunday evening because of the Bears-Packers game and wanting to keep on track with my estate sale work schedule. I have more beautiful vintage Native American pieces on the way and want to get back to posting so I do not fall too far behind.

We do not have any news about the car's arrival date but I started preparations to head out of town. After doing some research about moving the rest of our items to Arizona, I found that overall U-Box by U-Haul is the most economical way to go as far as an option that will pretty much go from A to B without a lot of loading and unloading. They are also rated #1 on Forbes' list. I tried uShip.com, I have used them a number of times in the past moving individual furniture pieces I have sold on eBay but found a larger load to be very expensive. The quotes ranged from $5,200 to $14,500! PODS was more on the lower end of the uShip range but still more than I wanted to spend. I originally was going to go with two containers but it was not a lot more incrementally to add a third. This allows Mother to send three furniture pieces that she will use in her bedroom. Her space will definitely have a different style than the rest of the house (Southwestern/Mexican/bohemian/touch of MCM) but that is OK, I told her she could decorate the room any way she wants to.

Kuochun and I went to the local U-Haul (where we buy our packing paper) and I signed up for the containers there. The store manager was really helpful and put me at ease.

I was going to enlist professional help through U-Haul to pack the containers but found on average the cost to be about the same as the containers themselves. The containers will be delivered next Friday and on Saturday I will have a couple of folks from Dolly coming to pack them. The drawback is I will have to wrap and package everything myself. The good thing is I have packed tens of thousands of packages for shipping so I have tons of experience. I also have lots of boxes, huge rolls of bubble wrap, packing tape etc. to use. All I will need to buy for sure will be the plastic wrap to hold the moving blankets in place and possibly some more moving blankets. It will be a lot of work but I will be so happy to have this stuff gone after having the bulk of it in my garage for a year.

Once the furniture is in place, we will then see how much space we have for smaller items. We are planning to have a "moving in" sale, most likely the weekend after Thanksgiving. Nearly two years after purchasing this home, I am still dealing with the items the previous owner left behind. Mother is also looking to downsize her collectibles and sell all of her Christmas decor. I went a little too crazy with online clothing shopping at Macoma Boutique and have a lot of pieces to sell and of course there will be jewelry. The hope is the items I send to sell will pay for the cost of shipping the furniture we are using there.

I started to make a list of things I would like to see and do in Las Vegas. Years ago the buffet at Paris Las Vegas was my favorite. I checked in to see if it was still operating and sadly it is not, but wow do they have amazing choices in its place! I do not watch the Real Housewives but I know who Lisa Vanderpump is, I have also seen snippets of her on an HGTV show and can tell she has impeccable taste. Her restaurant, Vanderpump A Paris, looks incredible and pricing is not bad if we go for lunch. I told Kuochun he could get gumbo and creme brulee beignets. Cajun food is his favorite and creme brulee his favorite dessert.

Another restaurant I would like to try is The Bedford By Martha Stewart. It is only open for dinner but from the looks of this place and the menu I would be willing to splurge a bit. I bet this is the only place we will have dinner on The Strip. I keep hearing that prices have really gone up due to the pandemic and inflation. I am super excited to try some of these celebrity restaurants that we do not normally have access to. Since we are driving we can live like the locals as well and hit some off-Strip spots. We will be there 7 nights and on the last day only have half the drive so we will really have the chance to see and do a lot. I have a pretty big list already! Unfortunately the Airbnb where we are staying does not include access to the fitness center. But we will be walking a lot. I hope to break even on my weight.

I have started working with some lovely folks who are opening a jewelry store. I know the woman from our estate sales, she has been our customer for many years, even back when I was working the sales! She has always admired the jewelry caravan and is interested in devoting a case to my jewelry in her store. I am so excited about this opportunity because it will be a fine jewelry store and my high-end pieces which are too expensive for the estate sales will be the low end in their store. I think they are so smart to have some affordable options available. They are opening next month and have already sold three expensive pieces of amber jewelry for me.

They have been so generous so far - we visited the store which is under construction and they took us to Bob Chinn's afterwards. I have not been there in many years. I ordered my "usual" pasta alfredo with shrimp and could not pass up one of their famous garlic rolls. On our second meeting, they visited my garage to pick up more jewelry and brought me this gorgeous torte from Oak Mill Bakery.

Right now they have all of my new amber collection except for a few beaded necklaces, all of the high-end Mexican jewelry and all of the Thane DeLeon Native American rings with the genuine gemstones. They feel confident that they can sell it all and it would be a load off my mind because I will not worry about it languishing at home this winter.

I know this means my inventory will be reduced for the caravan but I will plan to get more amber jewelry next winter and I still have a lot of silver which needs to be polished. The bottom line is if I can sell more, I can buy more so it is a win-win all the way around!