20 April 2014

spring is finally here!

Old man Winter has passed! 

We are ALL excited about warmer weather!

The bees are working hard. So pretty!

Thank you Lord for your beauty!

10 April 2014

#2 Ave Maria Grotto & Cullman, AL

To see the commentary, visit the first post about our trip.

Pictures from around Cullman, AL 

And now to Clarkson Covered Bridge....

08 April 2014

#1 Ave Maria Grotto & Cullman, AL

E and I talked about going to the Ave Maria Grotto for a few years now. We are not Catholic, but do enjoy roadtrippin' to see something new. While on Groupon searching for a birthday gift for E (that's the number one place to look, right?!) I saw the Grotto had 'buy two tickets for the price of one' and that just seemed like the perfect idea. Of course I added on the birthday card that anything we did that day would be included in his birthday gift so it really turned into a nice gift. We finally found a nice day to get away - it's nearly a 2 hour drive. It was a beautiful day and we just had a wonderful time. We went to the Grotto first then drove around the campus. I was driving and E was checking out the sights so we didn't really get any pictures of the campus but see more here at St. Bernard Prep. It was then after noon and we were hungry so we drove around looking for a lunch spot. I spotted a Jim-N-Nick's and we were both salivating before we even got out of the car. While we were waiting for our food (which was de-LISH!) I searched Trip Advisor for more ideas in Cullman.  We had already hit the number one spot so when E said to surprise him for our next adventure, I picked the Third Street Promenade and Clarkson Covered Bridge. So we drive back downtown (it was on our way out of town) to check out the Promenade and had no luck finding anything open. So sad. There were antique shops and cool shops galore! Why in the world weren't they open on Sunday?! That's usually a high traffic day. Anyway. We did see neat buildings in our drive downtown. Then I realized I had just committed one of my pet peeves. We would have to backtrack to get to the Bridge. At least it was a pretty day. ;) We had to travel way out in the boondocks to find this Bridge but it was a very cool find. E loved it so that made it worth the extra leg of driving. Now!! For the pictures. ;-)

We did not make it to the Bloomin' Festival because we were too early but a man at work went and came back with such rave reviews that we want to go to the Festival in the near future.

We. Are. Here!

LOOK at those beautiful tiles. <drool....>

See the next post for our after Grotto explorations!

02 April 2014

Role Reversal

     I had a yard sale! How's that for putting the shoe on the other foot!? ;-) I had a great time. Yard sales are FUN and when you host one, you get to be at one all morning. Win-win. Oh and you make some extra cash while cleaning out. Quadruple win-win! 

     I had a yard sale last August at the same time as some of my neighbors. We had a good turnout and I did get rid of some stuff but my goal that day was to bring in extra cash because my work had just cut our hours and therefore our pay. THANKS CONGRESS. Well I had a completely different attitude this time. E will be moving in with me in a few months when we are married and man has junk. I have junk. All that junk can't fit in this house. Okay technically it could. I just don't want all that junk hanging around. So early March or even late February, I had the idea of a yard sale in late March. I knew it would be almost-but-not-quite yard sale 'season' and felt like some folks would be ready to get out and we could attract more buyers. IT RAINED. So much for that theory but thankfully I had my ad read: RAIN OR SHINE, because I was setting up in my garage anyway. Speaking of ads, I ran one in the local paper (which was TOO expensive but ol' girl was on a mission), put pictures with my location on several Facebook yard sale groups and on Craigslist. We also had signs out on the main road from my neighborhood. 

     We had several big items, 2 of which sold to my friends and really made me wonder why I didn't just better advertise on my personal Facebook. Ha! I was happy to do "good deals" with them because I knew the items were going to great homes and they both texted me later and told me how much they love what they bought. :-)

     Y'all. I think I should go into the yard sale consulting business. I just had a great time getting everything ready! The day before the sale I mapped out how I would set up the garage. That was a great idea because when I was ready to arrange everything I almost felt overwhelmed but remembered I had made the map and it was so easy! I told several of my neighbors I was having the sale and they could join me if they wanted to but I only had one take me up on it. She had a tables worth of stuff and had an extra long table that she let me use. Whoohoo! 

     E was not really planning to be out in the sale all day but he had stuff to sell and I told him to have his bottom dollar in mind so if someone wanted to negotiate we wouldn't be panicking. I took my own advice and that really made a difference as well. If you get emotionally attached to your price on the sticker - 9 times out of 10 it WON'T sell. When your goal is to make money you can't come off the sticker price. When your goal is to move junk out, you have a better price available and life is so much better. Yard sale 101. E and my neighbor stayed in the garage all morning. It was a nice morning and we all enjoyed talking to folks and exchanging stories. 

E made this! In this high school shop class. I was surprised he wanted to let it go, but he did and he got his asking price. Probably because my neighbor talked it up. ;-)

I sold one! I have plans to make a shelf out of the last one so I am not heart-broken that it did not sell.

The set-up, row 1. That's my neighbors goodies on the table by the door. 

Clothes on row 2.

I had a table with my vintage goodies. I actually did price these competitively. I didn't anticipate any selling and sure enough, they didn't. It was a long shot and I knew it. 

Junk table number 1 on row 3. Clothes on row 2. 

Junk table number 2 (thanks to my neighbor!)

More clothes. And the mini-fridge sold!

Clothes and more clothes!

I had an impressive amount of home improvement items. Amazingly, half or more sold. That was super exciting to me!

Neighbors stuff

And more of her stuff

E had a bunch of car parts and I don't think any sold but we didn't expect them to since they are typically so expensive. He had a decent price on them but we will have to try selling through Craigslist or something to find the right buyer.

How'd you enjoy my yard sale? Ready to come back in August or September? Yep, I think I'll have another one!