The Last Hurrah (For Now)

It is the last hurrah for a couple of reasons - this is the last vintage Native American jewelry purge for now and our last full week in Scottsdale before we leave the heat and head home to the cicadas. I saved the best for last as far as jewelry purges go - there are a lot of special pieces in this lot. I originally estimated that I had enough jewelry for two lots but after I set up this photo, I had only four items remaining. I ended up listing them as "bonus" items on this purge.

I have heard over the years that months that start with "J" are the worst for online selling and that may be the case here. The only pieces which sold were the lamb pendant which belongs to Mother and the reversible pendant. I do not have a habit of looking at people's profile photos on Facebook but I did notice that the buyer of the lamb pendant had a picture of artwork featuring a lamb as her profile photo. That is the power of the internet, connecting unique items with their fans.

Even though this pendant did sell, I wanted to point out how interesting it is. I almost missed the hallmark stampings on this one, they are on top of the bail. I consulted my book and found that the artists are Jerry and Wilma Begay, Navajo. The pendant was beautifully done and so versatile with the different colors on each side. Normally reversible pieces in Native American jewelry are spinners, where the center disk spins from one side to the other inside of a frame.

On Monday Kuochun and I headed to Tempe to sign Mother up for cable TV but while we were en route she decided to go with Directv Streaming instead. I had taken her driver's license with me in case we needed it to sign her up so we brought it back to her right away. Even though we were close to home I thought it was a good opportunity to take Kuochun to Harlow's Cafe in Tempe which Mother and I had visited while he was in China. Harlow's is a real old school diner but not '50s soda shop style. The theme is Old Hollywood and there are movie posters all over the restaurant. When I went with Mother I got the chorizo and eggs which I thought was good.

This time I chose a bacon Belgian waffle and a side order of hash browns. The waffle was sparse on the bacon but I was alright with it. The hash browns were fabulous! Kuochun went with #7 on the All-Star Cast menu because he was in the mood for ham off the bone. He normally goes for a "2x2x2" meal at a diner - 2 eggs, 2 sausage, 2 bacon etc. but this meal had 4 bacon strips and 3 pieces of ham! Harlow's is known for their homemade muffins including blueberry and peach but unfortunately both times I have visited they were sold out. This time our server thought she could snag a bluberry muffin for Kuochun but they were gone. I am not sure if our server was making up for the loss but she gave Kuochun two big fluffy biscuits which she said are also homemade. He had enough food left over for an additional meal when combined with my leftover hash browns. We each had a biscuit and I thought they were great, even though it was the next day. Harlow's was a huge hit with Kuochun and I am sure he will want to go there again. It is totally worth the trip when visiting the Phoenix area.

I also finished posting the jewelry purge from May 19 Monday evening and I am happy to report that the Tom Willeto labradorite pendant on the left and the Paul Lucario Jr owl watch tips both sold quickly online, on Etsy and eBay respectively. About half these pieces are still available including the amazing denim lapis pendant and the vintage Carol Felley multi-gem post dangle earrings.

By Tuesday I had enough sterling jewelry polished and priced to send a full box home for the jewelry caravan. I made a trip to the Phoenix post office more than an hour before closing but the package drop off chute was locked. This happens occasionally, I guess the postal workers get to the point where they do not want to deal with any more packages for the day. Luckily the box with the watch tips fit in the mailbox as the buyer was anxious to receive them.

On Wednesday I continued pricing jewelry and took Melinda to the airport in the afternoon so she could fly to Chicago in preparation for driving Mother's car back here. I do not think she has taken a flight since prior to the pandemic because she has been driving back and forth to Chicagoland but other than a little delay everything went well for her. The Phoenix post office is on the way from the airport so I was able to mail my jewelry package. Thinking about my own trip, I am anxious because my replacement driver's license still has not arrived. I am praying that it comes Monday so I will not have to go to the motor vehicle department (MVD) to get an Arizona Travel ID. Just in case, I asked Melinda to locate my personal papers (birth certificate, expired passport and Social Security card) which combined with proof of residency will fill the requirements to get the ID. Luckily with some searching she found everything and sent it by Priority Mail. The envelope is scheduled to arrive Monday. There are only about a dozen MVDs in the entire state. The plan if needed will be to go to the North Scottsdale location on Monday after the mail arrives. Surprisingly, there is only the one location in all of Scottsdale which has a population of nearly 250,000. Kuochun will go along as he will go anywhere if getting something to eat will be involved!

The weather is trending hotter than I recall for this time of year, Thursday the high was 104 but I am tolerating it fine. The dry heat really makes a tremendous difference, the humidity was only 6% Thursday. When outside, I try to stay in the shade as much as possible. A heat wave is definitely coming with highs as much as 109 leading up to our departure Saturday and 113 after that. Next year if everything is OK with Mother I would like to leave a month earlier and beat some of this heat.

I spent most of the balance of the week on estate sale work with three packages to do and two sales. I did continue to help Mother of course. We took a test run and sent an Amazon order to Mother's building. I picked it up late Saturday night, the building has a Concierge Package Service where residents go to a touchscreen, key in their username and PIN and then one of the locker doors opens automatically. The door kept beeping until I closed it which I did not expect. There was no one around so hopefully it did not disturb anyone. Next week we will try prescription delivery from Walgreens and a food delivery. Mother had an occupational therapist come and she suggested a little wood stool to give her the boost she needs to get into her bed which is beautiful, but very tall by today's standards with a frame, mattress and box spring. The stool worked like a charm and now she can finally get off the couch and sleep in a bed. However, she always needs to be unconventional, she sleeps on top of the bedding with her head where her feet are supposed to be. I suggested she try sleeping the "regular way" but she said she has to keep an eye on the door so the boogeyman does not get her. I said just close the door!

Even though it was hot, I took Mother to Trader Joe's on Thursday which is about 12 minutes away. She picked up a lot of great meal ideas, both frozen and fresh. She is going to take some time off from meal delivery which I think is a good idea, even for me it was starting to get repetitious. Too bad Trader Joe's does not have delivery. When I get home I am going to try My Metabolic Meals for dinner. I am not a fan of cooked vegetables and all meal prep companies include them. There are only so many vegetables I can give to Kuochun and the dogs! Most of the My Metabolic Meals have a protein and a side and oftentimes the vegetables are finely chopped and mixed in with the side which I can totally handle. I understand that the meals will not look quite as beautiful in person as they do online but people are raving about the taste. They are low calorie, high protein, gluten-free, low sodium and no bad seed oils are used. I strive for all of this except for gluten-free but it cannot hurt to cut down on gluten. I had gluten-free noodles at Flower Child restaurant and they tasted the same as regular noodles. I think My Metabolic Meals will be a perfect choice for me and I look forward to trying them. To keep up with exercise, Kuochun is thinking about getting a second walking pad for home. It is too hot in the garage to use the walking pad here right now. We are still walking the dogs but either early in the morning or later at night so it is not as hot for all of us but I would like to get a lot more steps in.

I need to make room in the garage for two cars before we go (luckily Mother's car is small) so I got up early and spent most of Saturday morning organizing half the space and worked on the laundry room as well. The biggest part of the garage job is to vacuum and take the area rug that is still currently on the floor from the garage sales up to the first floor bedroom. Kuochun kindly said he will help me carry it.

The plan for next week will be to prepare everything for our departure and I am going to make it as stress-free as possible. Last year I had a week's worth of crafts cleanup as Mother was in the midst of putting together packets of beads for sale. She did take my desk with her to the apartment for now so every day I have been spending a little time going through the items which were in the desk. For now, Mother needs to focus on her health and the transition to the apartment so any work has been put on hold. It is a really strange feeling because we have been working together on various projects since I was a teenager. I hope she will be able to get back to it when we return in the fall because the piecework is good for her brain. This summer though, I will need to take over the jewelry card making.

As long as I have proper identification, next time I will be reporting from home!