The hubs and I don't always agree and really never have on business. He will ALWAYS give the customer OR the vendor the green light even when it's detrimental to our OWN well being and profit. This is the thing I hate the most about him...he can certainly be a woos about standing up for OUR rights..but then it's ALSO the reason I married him...because he has a kind and caring heart! I just wish a little more of that kindness and caring were on OUR behalf rather than always others...I sometimes think it's a passive aggressive weapon he uses against me.
AND after almost 39 years of living with the guy I know this is absolutely the truth and maybe I'm the one to blame for being always being so strong and so fearless in confronting things that I know are detrimental or unfair to us.
I could go on and on...about how his decisions to shut my thoughts and opinions down have hurt our lives...and I do have the stories...but let's just say that yesterday was YET another example...and I'm hopping mad about it and mostly MAD at Mr. FOUND OBJEKT for once again ducking and dodging any conflict he would have had to face in backing me up and working out something that would protect our best interests!
Yesterday was a STRESSFUL day! It was once again supposed to be a day off from work but we wanted to get an AWESOME painted glass counter top put in place at the gallery before customers are in and out of the consignment gallery.
Don't get me wrong...I'm SO thankful that our biz has picked up expeditiously since September and we are up to about 50+ customers coming in daily. During 'high' season this count can go up to 300! I'm grateful and happy that people love to come and visit us and happier still when they purchase something!
As we all know sales is a numbers game you have to have the numbers to hit the target.
We do our best to keep our overhead low...but installing the new air conditioner was expensive, running the new air conditioner IS expensive but less than I thought it would be so I'm thankful for that.
It won't be long until we can raise the big overhead door in the back and open the front door and have that heavenly COOL breeze blowing through. Fresh air is ALWAYS a good thing and our customers always comment on how much they enjoy visiting our gallery when it is wafting through.
It's one more thing that makes our gallery unique and different and fun and unexpected. We play steel drum music all day (another big fight with the hubs) to get that done...he'd play ROCK music if he had his way...what kind of atmosphere does THAT bring to John Q. Public...not much! But now that customers comment on how much they like the music he has to agree...it's different AND unique. So mission accomplished but....NOT...without a struggle though!
So here's the way I look at things. When you are married for a long long time you need to respect each other. But to respect each other you need to earn that respect. If you have a series of business mistakes in your past...you either learn from them...or allow the partner who has better expertise to make the business decisions. I won't say I'm ALWAYS right because that would be a TOTAL lie...but in the odds of business I can say from past experience I'm right MOST of the time.
I have a unique feel for people, and I have a strong feel for what is necessary in running a successful business. This takes NOTHING away from DH because without him and his undying dedication to working HARD and putting the muscle power into our success we would have been nothing in the construction business and we'd be nothing in our consignment business.
The problem comes in when DH over-rides what I feel is RIGHT and he likes to sluff off as acceptable. He will take the side of the other party EVERY time and it makes me furious!
I feel like he is doing this in an under-handed way to unsurp my own sense of business decisions and to prove that after all he IS THE MAN...and I'm just the harpy little woman that should know her place and bow down to him because and only because...he IS THE MAN!
After being bullied to the point of desperate fear from my first husband I made a vow to myself that NO ONE would steal my power EVER again.
Maybe that was right...or maybe that was wrong but it is my truth and I know no one is an island and EVERY one needs someone to have their back...but it's DARN disappointing when your one and only...really proves over and over that he doesn't.
The big bru~ha yesterday came over a new sign that I designed and the agreement from the sign guy and the PROOF that was approved and signed off on...AND the ultimate product that DID NOT MATCH what we had agreed would be placed.
Here's the sign...it's awesome! And here's the spot at the top of the marquee in our shopping center that it was to be placed.
We have waited for almost 4 years to go to the top of the billboard..and now with the fabric gal leaving our plaza we finally have the chance!
The last sign that DH accepted was totally DISMAL...you can see it on the marquee...the color was all wrong...supposed to be teal...and the elephant looks constipated!
It went up when I wasn't there and I HATED it...pathetic and totally unappealing...soooo this time I wanted what I WANTED and designed it to be sure it would satisfy.....ooppps...once again..it hasn't quite met my expectations..I've been disappointed once again...AND...with no back up from DH in making it right!
I wanted the sign to be all that it was promised to be...but the sign guy is allowed to slide on his error so ...DH can be HIS hero and HE doesn't get inconvenienced on eating his obvious error and making it right!
It's not a HUGE disappointment as life goes...but it is NOT what we agreed to and I'm pissed and mad as a hornet at DH for once again putting other peoples screw ups above his wife and business partner's insistence on standing our ground and getting what was promised ...and then...here's the BEST part... making the whole thing MY fault for wanting what we paid for!
You also have to know the sting is even stronger...because if this situation would have been the case of an unhappy customer in our construction biz rather than ME....DH would have quickly dipped into our profits to give the customer what THEY wanted...be they right about that or wrong...but when it comes to US...he has a different view....outrageous in my mind!
So...the fee for this sign was pretty substantial. BUT...we discussed it and felt it is worth it for all that was promised to us and agree to go ahead. For the amount quoted we were to have a new sign that completely FILLS the space and that little zebra border is supposed to be about 3 inches wide around the border just as an accent and an eye puller.
What we GOT...and the guy was shady installing it yesterday... when he was told we had a day off and wouldn't be there... is about 6-8 inches smaller than the marquee allowable and useable space all the way around!
He might have been surprised that we were there on Monday because of the glass counter top installation. And...he should have been stopped in his tracks and told that it was unacceptable right then and there...but DH made sure that didn't happen...booooo on him!
DH comes in as I'm working on the counter top and tells me that the sign guy told him that he had cut the sign smaller than it should have been but he would piece in more zebra print border and make the other side of the sign larger as it should have been.
But then as I'm talking to a friend of Josh's that came into our area of FL for a funeral and stopped by for a visit I find that while I'm talking to her inside our gallery....BOTH sides of the incorrect sign are being mounted and now DH tells me he didn't tell me that the guy told him he had made the sign smaller...in the first place....what the?? ....how else would I have gotten that info if it didn't come from him? HUH...this is a great tactic when you screw up...deny, deny, and deny! Ridiculous!
I'm NOT a happy little shop owner over this apparent screw up...the guy simply lost his measurements or he measured wrong in the first place....and now he's trying to back pedal his way out of redoing the vinyl and making it right.
Six to eight inches might not seem like a lot but it IS in the scheme of things because the lettering will be just that much larger and easier to read. I'm interested in the NAME, and the description of the business MUCH more so than the zebra border...but apparently Mr. Found Objekt sees no problem with this and lets the guy wiggle out of his original agreement.
SOOOOO much better to save the guy the time and trouble of doing things RIGHT and letting us absorb the screw up...WRONG on so many levels.
When I ask the guy why the sign isn't as large as he said it would be and that's what I want...he gives me some song and dance about how the body can't be bigger and that it wouldn't stick to the pan of the sign (VERY slight outward angle) anyhow. That he will piece it in with zebra print. This is a total lie and he knows it and I know it...but it's his weakest defense. I ask him why the former sign completely covered the pan and had no problem adhering. He's full of BULL and it makes me angry! I HATE it when men think they can BS women just because they are women! I've experienced it my entire life in the construction industry. Imagine how powerful I felt when I was recognized as the INTERNATIONAL estimator of the year in our construction biz. You can't pull the BS blanket over ME eyes!
The guy also told us in the quote that he would take the vinyl off the two other smaller signs that we had in place so they could be put back up on the marquee for the next person.
BUT...today he has a different story AFTER he's already taken a 50% deposit and given us a price for that service. NOW he CAN'T get the vinyl off the other signs without a WHOLE lot of effort and that's going to cost us more. IDIOT!
Wouldn't you think he would have checked the vinyl overlay and how hard it might be to peel off BEFORE he gives the quote...I'm telling you people in Florida are SO shady and the fact that DH lets him get by with this just encourages them to keep going on their merry way and ripping off the next victim.
Soooooo very long story short...I'm furious with the man...and he knows it and as always when he's called out...he goes into his pouty stage and makes it all MY fault.
Wonderful...we are working in separate locations today...as I say...MEN...you can't kill em!
Well....I feel a little better now...this too shall pass..thanks for listening my dear sparklers!
It was a grumpy weekend! It's always that when I find that DH and I have to do work for the gallery on both days. Our weekends are Sunday and Monday and there is so much to do around this house we absolutely need BOTH days off.
AND to further complicate our lives...we are so close to working 6 day weeks right now with 'season' right around the corner that those two days off mean a LOT to us! But...what are you going to do...you just put your head down and plow through don't you?
I'm SO happy that this little table that I've had for quite a while FINALLY got painted. I've had 4 very high end designer chairs from Robb & Stucky ( a VERY CHI CHI store here in FL) from almost the time that we opened the gallery. We locals call Robb & Stucky "Rob & Stick em!'
GASP...do you realize that's almost FOUR years! My how time flys when you're having mostly fun right?
Any how these particular chairs were VERY distinctive. The owner told me she paid over $350 for EACH! Just another classic case of TOO much money and not enough brains if you ask me...but HEY...I'm glad she brought them to our consignment gallery to sell.
Of course they expired LONG ago and since she didn't reclaim them within the time frame that means they stay with the gallery. ALWAYS a good thing for our profit margin!
The way that consignment works...or at least the way it works in our area is that you take in your items for a 90 day contract. You agree on pricing and whatever the item sells for (there are mark downs every 30 days) you get 50%. It's a pretty good deal if you don't want to be bothered advertising, cooling your heels waiting for strangers to tramp through your house and bargain you down to zilch.
We also do whole house appraisals where we will buy out the contents of the entire house if the stuff is in great shape and is still in current fashion. I always cringe a little on those type of deals because the wholesale amounts for buy out prices are pretty insulting. But you have to factor in our costs for storage, and inventory fees, and pick up charges and the sheer volume of the job has to make sense.
Mostly it's the kids that go for this once their uber wealthy parents go into a nursing home, or sadly have passed and they just want the stuff GONE.
It makes me a little sad that we don't have family...when I see families that are large and have no regard for objects of value and family history it's kind of depleting. How sad that the parents have treasured and passed down certain pieces throughout the history of their family and then the kids just thumb their noses at the whole legacy.
Yep...it's certainly become a throw away society...maybe it's GOOD that we don't have kids...I'd be smacking the heck out of them from the other side if they dumped some of MY treasures!
But...the table...here is one that looks almost identical to it size wise..the one I painted was a boring brown and had some pretty serious water damage to portions of the table top. I spruced it up and did some crackle over a black to match the chairs and then rubbed in some glitz to pick up the fancy smancy feel of the chairs on the legs. I did stress over getting just the right colors and the right patina...but the lady that walked into the store yesterday RAVED over it...so the time spent was well worth it.
Nothing makes and ART~TEEST's heart sing like compliments over their hand work. It takes HOURS of concentration to make things that are beautiful and it's becoming more and more of a lost art with all the cheap knock off imports coming in daily.
Here's a before pic of the table... the table I painted was a dull brown...with some water damage...it was kind of boring but a perfect size and feel for the chairs. This one is a white wash..it's in good shape but has lost it's glory days of when white wash was really in style here in FL.
The legs...DH will reattach them before I paint...they look pretty weird here don't they?
Here's the finished table with the cute little chairs. I LOVE these chairs...only thing I'm not completely crazy about is the fabric. The burgundy era has faded quite a bit as a color scheme. Just another reason you should always spend the BIG bucks on neutral colors so they are ALWAYS in style and save your color flings for accents like pillows, pictures and things more easily replaced.
Remember these chairs sat for almost 4 years and most likely would STILL be sitting without a custom designed table to bring out their cuteness.
The back of the fabric was really a great interest teaser..and made my color choice a little easier for the crackle effect on the table apron.
Then of course I had to use a little of my metallic wax to bring out the blng and accent the frenchiness of the table leg to tie in with the french style of the chairs.
The customer who purchased the set will use this as a little game table and she was thrilled with her find. She (thankfully) is putting a glass top over the top because as with all custom pieces...constant wear and tear and game playing is rough on table tops...especially hand painted ones.
If you are painting table tops be sure you seal them well and do several thin layers for best protection. You are still going to have to use coasters to protect against sweating water glasses...which you'd do anyhow on any fine piece of furniture.
Today while DH is manning the gallery I will paint these cutie chairs and because the fabric is discolored (owner left in a house in FL with no A/C on all summer and the fabric got splotchy) I will simply paint out the fabric and seal well with a clear wax for protection. It's the first time I've painted fabric...so here's hoping they turn out cute.
The matching table you've already seen above.
Then I'll paint the table and maybe spunk it up a little with some glazing or color wash to make it special.
Another project...lots of time...so I've got to run!
Oh...and another piece of good news...we are moving our signage up to the top of the marquee outside the shopping center hoping for better visibility. We are tucked on the far end of the shopping center and it's kind of hard for our customers to spot us sometimes. So when the fabric lady decided to move out of the center...we had first dibs on her signage spot.
YAY...it's an investment but I think it will be really cute and eye catching...I designed it and told the sign guy to make sure it meets my specs! I can be a toughie when it comes to getting things right...but then most of you know that about me by now don't you?
Well...miracle of ALL miracles the judge signed off on our new case management plan for the 'save our house' fight. This definitely gives me some peace of mind and a little more stability on what is going on for us over the next year.
Frankly I'm surprised she signed off, our valiant attorney was a little skeptical about her doing so. He said that it would be RARE indeed for a case as old as ours to be held over for another year.
This pushes our summary judgement date out until NEXT August. Amazing...and I have to thank all of you my wonderful friends for your constant and vigilant prayers on this matter. I feel that our higher power has some ideas about what is right and wrong and is coming down on our side for justice. AND... of course my mighty angel son Josher. I'm sure if ANYONE can do some behind the scenes workings it's he along with all of his angel friends.
Another thing I recently found out that the courts let fly and was SO wrong was that the PLAINTIFF's attorney was allowed to provide where services of notice were to be sent.
They were being sent to a former attorney that worked for our firm...so lots of the pleadings and notices were being sent to the WRONG place and our attorney's weren't notified.
Thank GOODNESS I have taught myself to check the court docket so I can keep my eye on things. Had i not caught this last court appearance we might have missed it and it would have been CURTAINS for us for sure.
Our attorneys have now filed updated notices so hopefully that resolves this problem. But WHEN does the court take the opposing counsel's word for where defendant notices should be sent?
SLOPPY and unprofessional court conduct and just one more example of how they side with the banks so empathically.
Because nothing has to be filed until January I'd be free to go on the cruise with my girlfriends...but I'm still hesitant to committing.
DH says if I want to go...go. But with all of the crazy ebola threats flying around and knowing that so many cruise lines have international people working on them AND the constant reports we hear of sickness...I'm more prone to giving this trip a pass.
AND...after our last Saturday's crazy get together night of eating out...I'm thinking my girlfriend may be a little too out of control for even ME (a VERY tolerant fun~maker/enjoyer) myself to handle.
She is a nurse...which is a little scary in it's own right because she works extremely long shifts. Now she is on this crazy regimen of HGH shots for weight loss and can only have 500-700 calories a day!
YEP..you read that RIGHT! She did this about 4 years ago and got RAIL thin...(size 2) I'm telling you these women are ALL obsessed with thinness...it's CRAZY! As long as she was taking the shots she stayed thin. The minute she got off the shots and they will take you off the minute your BMI gets to a certain level she put back on the lost weight and MORE!
One would think... as she's been to this weight loss show before... she'd realize that the same thing is going to happen again...right? But this time because she's getting the shots prescribed from an endocrinologist she thinks there will be a magical difference and the weight will stay gone. You can not sustain yourself on 500-700 calories a day...I mean BIRDS eat more than that!
I tried to tell her ANYONE is going to lose weight on that restricted kind of eating and it's NOT healthy and she is setting herself up for disaster...does she listen...what do YOU think?
BUT...the thing about her being on these shots and drinking is that it makes her CRAZY! I mean CRAZIER than usual!
Last Saturday was LOTS of fun...she had a really cute new frosted wig on...BUT she got so looped and she talks with her hands and kept pushing the bangs of the wig back until it actually fell off her head! Now that was REALLY funny at our house...to see her with her little wig cover on...and her real hair sticking out like little crow feathers all over!
Why she didn't use some bobby pins to anchor that bad boy down...I'll never know!
But funnier STILL...was it fell off THREE more times AT THE RESTAURANT!
Of course by THAT time she is too looped to worry or CARE about it...and me sitting next to her had to keep retrieving it and helping her slap it back on.
I was laughing SO hard...I almost spit my water...you should have SEEN some of the other patrons! Bonefish Grill is fairly full of the 'beautiful people'......Priceless.
Her sister was mortified! But after all of these years I'm quite sure she is used to this erratic behavior! I witnessed it on our girls trip to NYC and I thought it was cute and funny for about the first time...then I gave her what for after the next SEVERAL times... and told her how irresponsible it was after. I said it puts an X on your back as to 'easy target' to rob, rape, whatever and because I'm the unlucky little traveler sitting next to you it puts me in danger too! NOT COOL my friend...NOT cool at ALL!
Sooooo, I'm thinking on this cruise she will still be on these shots and still loopy out of her mind...and I'll be the baby sitter while her sister and mother leave her cooling her heels.
Don't think that would be much of a vacation after all do you?
I love this woman...I really do...she has a heart of gold, loves her son with all of her heart and soul and I can definitely relate to that having lost my beautiful boy...but sometimes you really CAN'T save people from themselves now can you?
I think I'll sit this cruise out until another time when she goes back on the wagon and is a semi~sane humanoid.
I've told her over and OVER again...that anti-depressants and alcohol do NOT mix...she won't even consider getting off of them since she's been on them so many years...it's really a kind of sad situation...especially when it's someone you care deeply about.
But you can't sacrifice yourself for someone else's craziness either now can you?
I'll do something fun and MUCH safer with DH during that timeframe.
All things happen for a reason...last Saturday was a reminder of that!
Still plugging away on my early a.m. walking streak. Today was day 21...still not loving it...still having to really work at it...but that's life too my friends!
Have a terrific weekend! Saturday we go to the sister's house...I'll have to break the news that I won't be able to make the cruise...bummer!
You know my ongoing saga with our Friday/Saturday night dinner gang group.l
It's been a long term standing date with all of us for some 20+ years. Over the years we have ALL definitely been though our ups and downs.
DH and I used to be the big fish in the small pond when the group first formed back in the late 80s. But then we fell off our money horse and now are the minnows swimming in the big money pond. We have had lots of mixed feelings throughout those years...sometimes we feel very accepted and just like old times and sometimes we feel very ostracized for the simple reason that we no longer have the big buck~o~roos that we used to.
It's been a struggle to find our footing. I've written a good many blogs whining about the status quo and how people can change their perception about someone they have known for decades on a dime and isn't it SAD that they judge a person by the $$ in their bank account.
It's been UP and it's been DOWN. In fact a few times we've sworn that we will just drop the group and move on...but it's a statement that is easier said than done. Especially when we literally have NO family and these people...pretentious or not...ARE our family.
Tonight was an awesome get together. Maybe it's because we haven't been together for a good 3 weeks or so...but it was a nice evening none the less.
We all met at our house and had hors'de ouvers and a glass of wine than went to Bonefish Grill for our dinner out.
I worked all day around the house sprucing it up and putting out some Halloween holiday decor and was happy for the opportunity to entertain this wild and crazy motley group of 12.
We had a great time and enjoyed the evening immensely.
Just goes to show you...absence DOES make the heart grow fonder.
In the next few weeks all of our clan will be back and I'm looking forward to the reunion.
So says she this night in Ocitober....next week could be a WHOLE different scenario.
We are kind of like the Housewifes...of....that popular reality show on television...we fight, we make up, we fight...we make up...we ARE family...no matter how brash and whimsically jaded.
Today I held to my walking regimen...I'm not wanting to break my streak...and that TOO feels good!
You know my favorite saying..."If it's free...it's for ME!"
Soooo you might enjoy tuning in on Oct. 15th for a food revolutionary event on quick and easy ways to make your kitchen healthy!
I have to admit...with my new love of walking I'm very proud I've put into place a healthy streak promoting a great healthy habit....but...it seems this time devoted to walking has taken away from my food planning...I know...I know...I could record my grocery list as I'm out there pounding the pavement but I'd rather think about the blessings of nature that surround me and listen to the early birdies singing.
Grocery shopping is NOT my main focus at the crack of dawn each morning.
When I hear of something that can help me stay on the healthy wagon I'm all ears..and if it mentions the word FREE in the intro...I'm THERE!
Last night was a rushed restaurant stop on the way home after a long day at work. At least I DID grab two chopped chicken salads...so that was pretty good. But at $26 for the both of them...it seems a bit pricey for a take home meal. I could have done better and a heck of a lot more economically if I would have done a little advance planning.
My mantra here on Spark is...."If I know...you know"...so here's the link...hope it works!
I'm not the most tech savvy..that's DH's department and my darling departed Josh...oh how I wish I could get a telephone line up to him in heaven, he was the world's BEST speller and computer whiz kid!
I still find myself 8 long years later resisting the impulse to yell out to him..."Josh....how do you spell......."
Old habits die hard and every time I get a new piece of techie hardware I curse the fact that I don't have our Josher to help me figure it out! If you have kids no matter HOW much they may aggravate you some days cherish them and hold them close! Take it from the mother who lost her angel guy..they are irreplaceable!
But...back to the Food Revolution information....at the very LEAST if you sign up you'll get some nifty tips on accelerating your path to nutritional excellence with time saving tips to do so...and you will get some great recipes and..yes you DO have to give out your e-mail...bummer...but you might learn some really cool stuff that makes this all worth while
The date is Oct. 15th at 5:30 p.m. PST and 8:30 p.m. EST. I hope to tune in and learn up!
Here's a pic from my bright and early walk yesterday morning. It was 75 degrees out..only 2 degrees warmer than the day before...but only a 1 degree up the thermometer here in sultry FL might as well equate to 10 degrees warmer in your neck of the woods! The humidity is dripping wet and I sure felt it and it wasn't pleasant!
This morning I was almost happy that it was raining hard outside. I'll still get my walk in..don't want to ruin my 12 day streak but it will be on 'Slim' my treadmill.
Well...I'd better run...we are hosting the Friday/Saturday night group this Saturday and I've got so much to get done. Our house has become a 'project studio' with all of the random pieces of furniture I'm always painting.
Doesn't bother the hubs and I one little bit and we are grateful to have the room to do it here, but it isn't conducive to hostessing so it's got to be finished up and stowed.
We've tried to paint in our consignment gallery but that seems to be a lesson in frustration..just too many interruptions when customers come in. BUT...don't get me wrong...I'm GRATEFUL for those customer interruptions...last month was a terrific month for sales...MUCH better than last year so I think that our little road trip vacation in August was WELL worth it!
The heavens smiled on us and brought us back refreshed and ready for business once again. As you all know...working with the public day in and day out can drive you bonkers if you don't allow time to refresh.
I'm off to my painting project. I'll shoot some pics and share it with you, I've been stumped on how to tie a table that I painted into matching some very high end custom speciality chairs..but i think I've got a good idea...let's hope it works as good in real life as it seems to in my creative little ART~TEEST brain! Art...it's a crap shoot in faith and fearlessness!