In The Home Stretch...

I just had to mention that April 28 was my dear sweet Grandpa Haertle's birthday. He was born in 1906, the 12th of 13 children. He worked his way through school not only to help his family but to eventually graduate from Marquette University Law School in 1929. He was Register in Probate for Milwaukee County and it was fun to visit his office as a child. My grandparents lived in an adorable 1935 Lannonstone Tudor home in Wauwatosa, WI. I remember putting on his hat and scarf and running around the round marble coffee table in the living room. The second floor had a little loft where my grandpa had a desk. I used to love to "play office" and use his signature stamp on pieces of paper. I know he would have found it very cool that I now do real work for my own business at my own desk.

After nearly a month, I was finally able to post a mixed jewelry purge this past Sunday evening. I was even able to release it an hour earlier than the time I normally shoot for which is 8:00 PM Central Time. However, only two pieces sold - the triple feather pendant by superstar Navajo artist Ray Tracey in the center and the cross pin at the lower right. All of the other items are available. As usual, turquoise rules! The plan will be to get these pieces online very soon as our time in Arizona this season is starting to get short. As long as the cicadas have finished doing their thing and Mother is settled well in her apartment, our plan will be to return to Mount Prospect on Saturday June 8. Although I did not accomplish as much as I had hoped for jewelry-wise, I know I did my best with the time I was given and I will have this month and a half or so to decide what to bring back home to work on, if anything. We have been flying American Airlines and an announcement was made recently that they are going to allow passengers with pets to also bring carry-on bags. It would be more to manage but a great chance to at least bring home the pieces I currently have online so I would not need to delist them over the summer.

This past week I posted a pendant from my personal collection. I estimate that this pendant was created in the 1960s. It is so pretty but I just never reached for it. Part of the reason may be that red is not a favorite color. I really appreciate the beautiful red of genuine coral but I gravitate more towards the jewel tones.

I also added two very special bolo ties to the Southwest Style jewelry collection - even though they feature Native American-made components, they were assembled by an artist of Mexican descent. In the end, even though they were made for me I decided to put them up for sale. They are one of a kind and I am sure there are buyers out there who will appreciate them as much as I do. There are seven more bolos to post and I have the photos ready which is half the battle. I have one more unique bolo which has butterflies with genuine diamonds as well as a kachina slide I had turned back into a wearable bolo but this time by a Navajo artist so I will be able to list it as Native made. I linked all three of these photos to their listings in my Shopify store.

Kuochun returned home safely on Tuesday and was able to take over the early morning dog walking the next day. I feel like I was jetlagged right along with him trying to keep up with that crazy schedule for two months. I am looking forward to things settling down although I do not know exactly when that will be! There have just been so many doctor's appointments. The heart specialist was out of the country so we visited with his assistant for the first time. She gave Mother tough love, saying she has got to cut down on the salt or it will literally be a death sentence. One of her patients has been in the hospital for a month due to having heart problems and eating too much salt. As I have been saying all along, the medical professionals can only do so much, the patient has to cooperate as well.

The professional photos of Mother's home were taken this week. They turned out great and here are a few examples. The photographer really knew how to make the backyard look spacious! The further along we go in the process the more real it becomes and the sadder I feel. Whoever purchases this home is going to be so lucky. It is just the ideal home for a single person or couple to live and great improvements were made so it is move-in ready. I have never seen a drop of water in the basement and rarely seen a bug, and this is with no pest control. This is in stark contrast to what I have gone through in Mount Prospect over the years. Mother had a fox move into the planter in the front of the home for a couple of weeks two years ago but that was about it.

The home will go on the private realtor's network next Wednesday as "coming soon" and then on the MLS next Thursday. I was sure to grab copies of the photos from the previous listing because the difference in the improvements is pretty drastic. I will be shocked if there are not multiple offers because this home is such a gem and inventory is extremely low right now. As part of the contract, we said it was OK for potential buyers to send us "love letters" with their offers. I think this is more important to me than to Mother. The result will be in God's hands and things will turn out the way they were meant to.

I moved some more small items over to Mother's apartment but she has not moved in yet. The number one reason is American Idol is on Sunday and Monday evenings and cable TV is not set up yet. Number two and three, there is no bed or food. Next Thursday is the scheduled day for the move-in of the U-Box items. I spoke with the mover and I will need to call U-Haul to let them know they will plan to pick up the U-Box on Thursday morning. Unfortunately it is about the same time as Mother's lymphedema therapy but I will do my best to juggle everything.

Kuochun has not really felt up to going on any dining excursions but we did go to Chicago Hamburger Co. He enjoyed the atmosphere as well as the food and I feel like he can cultivate the same kind of relationship with the owner that he had with the owner of the sub shop in downtown Mount Prospect. Kuochun is a White Sox fan and the sub shop owner is a Cubs fan so they used to banter back and forth about it. Kuochun asked the owner here where the White Sox stuff was and he was quick to say he has about 40 pieces of White Sox memorabilia posted on the walls. He also said he made 2005 free sliders for his customers the year the White Sox won the World Series. Kuochun ordered the Firedog which was a Chicago dog but with hot peppers. I went with the chicken sandwich and onion rings again. The bun was a little dry this time but the chicken and onion rings were as excellent as before. Kuochun said he will try the Italian beef next time.

Once again, we are nearing the end of the month and it is time for me to at least make the 25 draft listings on Vendoo so I do not lose what I paid for. I have through the 2nd of the month. I think I will set up items from recent jewelry purges so when crunch time is over it will be easier to post them. I signed up for a webinar with Vendoo next Tuesday about Whatnot, which is a selling venue which has a marketplace but is best known for doing live sales. In my very limited experience with Whatnot, it seems like budget-friendly items do better but now that Vendoo has a partnership with them, it would be very easy to post my items to Whatnot's marketplace. There are no listing fees so anything that sells there would be a bonus! I am very interested in the concept of live sales, I think I can do it if for no other reason, a good 30+ years of watching HSN and QVC back in the day. The challenge is to attract the customer base. I can see how lucrative it can be seeing others who do live sales with similar items. Currently it takes me all day and evening just to photograph, write up and post a small jewelry purge only to have many of the items not sell. I will always be very grateful to the Facebook groups as the sales there got me through the stay at home order during the pandemic. Overall it has definitely been worth it but it is very time-consuming and I am always looking for ways to improve things.

I received a response about my museum shop inventory, it turns out that they would like to give back the two items which were not on the list. They also just got the word that the shop is going to be remodeled and will reopen in October. In the meantime, they will operate a small shop on the premises. I will go along with whatever they decide but at this point think it would be better to just wait until the fall to present my items in the new shop. I asked about next steps and I am waiting to hear. I wish I knew there were going to be so many delays as I could have been trying to sell these items myself all this time. But I am considering them gone right now and will require more patience to see what happens. Coincidentally, someone in one of the Facebook groups recently made the announcement while attempting to sell a piece of jewelry in the group that when she consigns jewelry at the museum she receives 10% more than what I was quoted. That was definitely disappointing to hear but maybe if things go well with this grouping I can work my way up to the better rate.

I was able to polish, price and pack some more jewelry to send home to the caravan. The short-term goal would be to get the desk cleared off and then hopefully get started on some of the shoeboxes which need attention. Slowly but surely I am making progress with the desk.

Until next time!