Coming Home Soon

Our week did not get off to a good start - on Monday morning the pulmonologist's office called to say after looking at Mother's blood test from the week before her potassium level was dangerously high. Their advice was to get right to the ER because it could cause a heart attack or another stroke if not treated. Mother was feeling OK but we went as we did not want to take any chances. I was seriously worried about her missing the important appointment with the pulmonologist for which we had been waiting a month (and delayed our return home for.) We also had just completed all the required tests at various facilities. Unfortunately we ended up missing the appointment as Mother was not discharged from the hospital until Wednesday afternoon. It took a couple of days for the staff to get her potassium level down to what it should be. We could have rescheduled for July but decided not to prolong our time here anymore and cut things off. I have a colonoscopy scheduled for June 15 which was delayed two years due to the pandemic. I would have been happy to postpone it but by the time July comes around it is going to be awfully hot.

As a result, we decided to book our plane tickets Wednesday after we brought Mother home. She decided to try leaving a week earlier than us and is taking the red-eye overnight next Friday leading into Saturday June 3. She is nervous about it but we will do whatever we can to send her off smoothly and successfully. We are about the same distance from Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport as we are from Mount Prospect to O'Hare. I am going to look into getting Mother some extra help at home a couple of days per week. Ideally we can find someone who lives nearby who can keep the house tidy, assist with advance meal prep and do occasional grocery store runs. I will continue to do laundry, put the garbage out and go to doctor's appointments but this would definitely help ease some of the load.

Kuochun and I will head home with the girls the evening of Saturday June 10. On the flight here, I signed up for the American Airlines credit card and I had 50,000 bonus points to use. I was able to get one-way tickets for Kuochun and I free of charge. I paid an additional $108 for us to have two seats right behind first class with no third seat next to us. Going there it was a bit uncomfortable because the pet carriers did not fit under the seats. There should be a lot more room and we do not have to worry about bothering anyone in the same row. I was able to book Mother's favorite seat on her flight which is an aisle seat in the front row, also behind first class. She is flying United because we already have the paperwork in place for her portable oxygen machine from last time. The flight from Phoenix to Chicago is shorter than the reverse because we will have the wind at our back. It should only be about 2 hours 45 minutes but we will lose two hours as Arizona does not observe Daylight Savings. Coming here is about 20-30 minutes more. In my opinion it is an easy flight.

I will take the extra week to properly close up the house for the summer. I have arranged for the helper I had last year to watch over things again. She actually is greatly reducing her fee because everything is so much more organized this time. What a pleasant surprise! I continue to have the great landscapers coming every other week, also at a lower price (and doing way more work) than the previous company. I found a house cleaner through Facebook group recommendations this past week who sounds fantastic. She is planning to come clean the house for the first time Thursday June 8. She is charging less than half of what the company we were using was charging me. The other company started out so strong, with a team of three doing a flawless job. But every month the quality of the job went down, and last time was not great. I did not want to find someone new for one month so I asked them to come one more time and they ghosted me. Lesson learned - I will be hiring folks directly and not through middleman companies. But now I know the town way better - Phoenix is very easy to learn. With the addition of the house cleaner the support team is falling into place, it would be so wonderful to have a stress-free summer here!

We are bitterly disappointed to have done so much work only to miss Mother's doctor's appointment by a few hours. I was sure to reschedule the appointment on the spot for Monday October 23. Kuochun is not so sure that he wants to come back after just more than four months but the fantastic weather starts about that time. I would also like to have a holiday garage sale. We had such a fantastic result with our downsizing sale and that was with me not having time to put out most of my jewelry. I would like to have the sale the weekend before Thanksgiving as it was cold in the early mornings the second weekend of December.

This time around, just about everything is now priced and I will be able to get the jewelry out and photographed. All we need to do is price is Mother's extensive holiday decor collectcion. She has totes filled with vintage beaded flowers as well and plans to make some arrangements with vintage containers. She also set up hundreds of bags of vintage beads, crystals and other doo-dads for jewelry making to sell. They turned out so cute using colorful patterened card stock with the paper punch I bought on Amazon. My job is to price everything. We may not get to those projects until the community garage sale in February but at any rate I will be way better prepared this time.

I also had to put off launching the vintage Native American online jewelry sale on .net because I have not had the chance to photograph the entire collection. Except for any new pieces, all of the cuff bracelets and most all of the necklaces are online in various marketplaces. I still need to make sure I have consistent photos of all the earrings, pendants, bolos, pins and belt buckles. I am going to send everything home and should be able to accomplish this during the summer. I will not send too much home though because I would like to focus on my best remaining pieces of costume jewelry when I am there.

We did have a bit of better news on Friday. Mother's follow-up appointment with the physician's assistant was scheduled but the person we saw last time called in sick. The first person was very nice but we loved her replacement Heather, what a smart cookie she is! One example was when Mother mentioned the dry patches on her elbows. After going through red tape with a dermatologist's office at home - no one knew what it was and they even took a sample but we left for AZ and never received the results - Heather knew exactly what it was and diagnosed some cream for it. She also suggested filling the cracks with Aquaphor so the cream just treats the surface issue and does not go deep into her system. My whole life I have had doctors listen to my heart and for others and they never say what they are hearing. Heather explained her findings in detail. We were so happy to hear that Mother's medications are doing their job to keep her heart beating normally. Next week we need to go for a follow-up blood test and plan to officially switch to Heather. I hope they let us!

For me, holidays are normally all about estate sale paperwork and this weekend was no exception. But to maintain my sanity I alternated it with preparing a box to send home for the jewelry caravan. It should arrive next Tuesday. There is lots of costume jewelry in all price ranges plus sterling estate jewelry and pieces from Mexico. With high temperatures hovering around 100 degrees most days and starting to trend upward, it is really too hot in my opinion for outdoor activities. But I have more than enough to do inside the house!

I posted some more jewelry listings, mostly Federico earrings and the darling angel pendant above. They are located under the New Mexican Silver Jewelry collection. Click on the photo above to access the collection.

I was pleased with my online sales this past week - I sold a couple of items on Etsy that I have had for a while including this gorgeous strand of vintage handmade and hand stamped graduated Navajo pearls. I am on pins and needles though waiting for the package to successfully arrive. The buyer did not provide her apartment number and did not respond to my request for it and the address mapping would not pass I did not want a ding on my record for a late shipment so I shipped the package using Etsy's system, which accepted the address she provided.

This gorgeous Federico natural turquoise naja pendant is also finding its way to a new home after an extended period of time with me. It was pricey but I paid a lot for it. I was so pleased to find a buyer.

My third sold piece this week was a vintage watch with Navajo watch tips. I was asking $100 and someone offered only $45 on Poshmark. I would lose money with Poshmark's 20% commission and $7.97 for shipping so I countered at $85. He did not accept but a few days later it sold on Etsy for the $100!

I sold a narrow Navajo stacker cuff bracelet on eBay as well.

Finally I had a local buyer pay me a visit through Facebook Marketplace, he purchased two vintage Native American sterling silver chip inlay cuff bracelets and is interested in a third made of copper but I had shipped it home. Next week I will have someone look for it for me. Plus another local customer is coming to look at my stunning all sterling Navajo naja necklace as pictured above. I hope to keep the momentum going by continuing to post new items, even if it is only a few per week. I still have Vendoo set to 25 items per month as I have about 300 draft listings to catch up on.

We did not have any estate sales over the holiday weekend which allowed me to spend some more time on jewelry. Next week we resume our full schedule of four sales per week and right now we are fully booked through the weekend of June 29. The plan over the final two weeks in Scottsdale is to go through all of my "to-do" boxes and locate, polish and price as much sterling as possible. I will try not to stress out, whatever I cannot get to will need to resume in the fall. I was not able to get to the costume jewelry repairs that I can fix myself but I will make that a project for next winter. It will be such a happy day to get all of the jewelry ready to sell, it has been years. Then we will turn to liquidating most of the rest of our jewelry making collection, saving core elements to create earrings and Southwest Style pieces. I still have an Etsy shop for Windy City Jewelry where I plan to list our best creations and special findings for sale. I always have goals in mind!