The End Of An Era?

This week, the focus was on the Fall Pop-Up Sale. Thank you so much to those of you who paid us a visit over the weekend. It was great to see you! I have to apologize for not being able to send an e-mail newsletter to formally announce the sale this week. By the time I completed the estate sale newsletter there was no time to complete the jewelry one.

After slight reflection now that the sale is complete, most likely this will be the last pop-up sale in Mount Prospect, at least one that focuses on costume jewelry. We will see what next year brings. It was definitely a challenge to set up the sale mostly on my own. I did bring Mike in to help refresh all the jewelry cases and set up the tables for the sale on Monday. I was able to post way more photos to the ads than usual but did not have time to finish setting up the breezeway with costume jewelry and fill the display cases in the main room with better pieces. Although what I presented was pretty organized, I felt bad that I was not able to present a completely staged sale.

In a previous week, I shared a photo of this area of the breezeway that Mike had set up for me, loaded with sparkling pieces of vintage rhinestone costume jewelry. This is what it looked like at the end of the day Thursday! It was unintentional but the pop-up sale ended up marking the beginning of the liquidation process of the costume jewelry. This will take some time because even though I have sold a lot over the years I had tons to begin with, going back to the days when we owned our brick and mortar stores.

At the end of the day on Sunday in addition to selling a lot more of the rhinestone jewelry at my cost, I let go of a lot of the costume jewelry that I have had on consignment for nearly two years. The remaining consignment jewelry will be separated by client and divided into wholesale lots. I am going to try a Facebook group I learned about and if I cannot receive a reasonable price there I will post the lots to Vendoo and then crosslist to eBay, Etsy, Poshmark, Facebook Marketplace and Shopify. I will post updates on the wholesale lots here!

I placed a number of furniture and shed items on Facebook Marketplace to coincide with the pop-up sale and had excellent success. I sold the rosewood furniture, the black metal stationary storage shelf, the pair of silver color rolling storage shelves and the silver color store display walls. I even sold a card table which had gotten rained on for $10. As the buyer carried it through my yard, I watched a trail of rusty water follow her. Hopefully it will wash off the patio the next time it rains. We are supposed to get lots of rain next week.

Since costume jewelry has always been most popular at my pop-up sales over the years, I am not sure what the future will hold once I only have sterling jewelry to offer. I will probably have a "pop-up going out of business sale" either next spring or fall and sell any extra furniture and displays in the main room and shed. I will keep the breezeway as it is because I love the way it is decorated. It can continue to serve as a workspace and place to showcase jewelry by appointment.

It took any free time I had for the better part of a month to prepare for this sale. Looking back I think the time would have been much better spent continuing to post jewelry purges on Facebook and then listing the unsold items online. But I am never one to have regrets and will continue onward and upward from here.

Kuochun learned about the restaurant Phoenix Flame in Rolling Meadows on Nextdoor and he was very anxious to try it. It is a Latin Mediterranean restaurant which used to be in Niles. They moved to a Rolling Meadows strip mall where Jewel is located and I have been to many times taking Mother to rehab. Even though it was the eleventh hour preparing for the pop-up sale we took some time out to go on Monday evening. Kuochun selected the Canadian grilled salmon with potatoes and seasonal vegetables and I chose the skirt steak sandwich with fries as shown above. He enjoyed his entree and I thought the fries were great. I very rarely eat beef but do like skirt steak because it is flavorfully marinated and tender. This version had a good taste but the meat was very gristly. I could not bite into the sandwich without making a mess so I ended up cutting it into small pieces. I had thought of ordering the shrimp skewers but Kuochun mentioned that he was going to make shrimp the next day. Even though there was only one server in the room, she was very attentive and the owner even stopped by to see how we were doing. Overall I really liked the experience, the restaurant was very clean and had a casual yet slightly upscale feel which I thought was nice. Little did I know that we would be back again at the end of the week!

Saturday was my birthday and Mother surprised me with a torte from Central Continental Bakery (with Maureen's help) on Friday. Mother knows that one of my favorites is their hazelnut torte. This particular day there were hazelnut raspberry, lemon and coconut tortes available. I would have liked any of them. My opinion on this hazelnut raspberry torte is that it has a very mild flavor. I would not go as far as to say it was bland, but more non-descript. There was no chocolate except for the little dollops on the top and the raspberry layer was very thin. It was good but I prefer their classic hazelnut which has more chocolate. I am not a chocoholic by any means but this torte needed some!

On Saturday evening, Kuochun and I headed out for our meal of the week at J. Alexander's, this was my birthday choice. The website said men are required to wear pointed collars but Kuochun does not have any here, except for Dad's old Apple Annie Awnings shirt which is 3 sizes too big for him. No one mentioned it thankfully. Chicken Milanese is my favorite chicken dish and J. Alexander's has a delicious one, along with Cheesecake Factory and Cafe Lucci in Glenview. I substituted the smashed potatoes for the wild rice and orzo salad. This salad is simply amazing and is worth the trip to J. Alexander's just for it. We ordered calamari with marinara sauce as an appetizer and it consisted of only the rings which was OK with me. We also split a Caesar salad. The server said but your meal comes with a little salad and I said that's fine, we'll take it anyway! Kuochun ordered the fish special which was sea bass (one of his very favorites) with couscous and French green beans. There were no leftovers for either of us! For the birthday, we were presented with a piece of carrot cake to share. I am not sure if they microwave the cake but it was so hot, when I removed the candle there was only wick left from the portion that was inserted into the cake. The cream cheese frosting was also super melted but we ate it anyway. A couple of little hiccups - we were shown to a regular table instead of a booth, which is why there are shadows in my photo and once we received our entrees we noticed that everyone surrounding us had bread on their tables except us. The other server working the area asked her customers if they wanted bread but our server did not ask us. It was too late by the time we realized what was going on. It was a quick meal, taking exactly one hour from start to finish. The great food made up for the hiccups though.

After the sale ended Sunday, we took Melinda to Phoenix Flame so she could try it. Interestingly they remembered me from Monday but not Kuochun. It is always the other way around! This time I ordered the shrimp skewers and although they were very tender I felt they were not flavorful. The fries were good (in my book it is difficult to mess up fries) but they were different and not as wonderful as the first visit. I saved the Shepherd Salad for Mother because I knew she would love it - tomatoes, cucumbers and feta cheese dressed with olive oil. She did totally love it and mentioned how much more than once. It sounds like we will need to bring her there sometime, it is only a few minutes from her house.

Next week will be the time to catch up with estate sale work and pack up the pop-up sale. Mother decided to go ahead and keep her doctor's appointment in Scottsdale October 23 so I booked the airplane tickets for all of us for the evening of October 21. I was pleasantly surprised to see that I had enough airline miles to cover another one-way for Kuochun and I but I did spent an extra 1,000 miles so we could go in the evening rather than 5:30 or 7:30 AM. I will be glad when the time comes that I have that extra day to make sure the house is in order.

I would have been happy to stay here a few additional weeks since we have only been here four months but this will keep us on track. I am going to have the second part of our downsizing sale the weekend after Thanksgiving and this will give me time to prepare. I had to leave the garage in Scottsdale disorganized because I ran out of time but the house is in great order.

A lot of jewelry will be going to Scottsdale and will not be coming back here. Pictured above is some of the vintage Native American jewelry collection and below are examples of the other pieces which will be leaving. I would be happy to show any of this jewelry by appointment through Wednesday, October 18 before it goes bye-bye. Eventually it will all be online and available for purchase with complimentary shipping.

All of the Tucson Gem Show jewelry will be heading for Arizona including these Native American Navajo-made contemporary pieces.

In addition, the Mexican jewelry from Elysium and The Boyz Silver as well as the hoop earrings and bangle bracelets from Bora will only be available here in Mount Prospect until October 18.

A lot but not all of this amber jewelry will be heading to Arizona. The vintage and vintage-style pieces will be staying as part of the jewelry caravan.

It is not pictured but the Federico collection and bohemian costume jewelry necklaces will be coming with me.

See you next time with a final 2023 update from Mount Prospect!