Sunday, July 31, 2011

Captain, Converse and Combustion

I think I see how my weeks work. I work Monday through Friday during the day. Saturday morning we sleep in a little, and then wander around the world. Sundays we bum around the house, maybe clean and do laundry. I guess I can't explain. I just keep thinking I should be doing more on Sundays than watch TV and read blogs. The husband seems content to watch TV, nap, do his laundry and eat. It is just so dang hot even with the lower ceiling in the house that I have no ambition. I don't like putting the dogs outside in fear they will spontaneously combust.

I guess I need to resolve myself to be a "bum" on Sundays and get things done the rest of the week or make myself crazy.

Yesterday's adventures sent us to a thrift store listed in the paper as now open to the public and only open on Saturday. Of course my curiosity was peeked. We went down a long industrial shop, gentleman's club lined road to get to it. It was puny. It was also open all week long. I was a bit disappointed. But then I saw them. Huddled near the CDs and the LPs were two shelves of 8 track tapes. Now I only found one that interested me... Movie Theme Songs from 1972. But it is a good one. Filled with the theme from Shaft, Godfather and Brian's Song to name a few.

The year I was born and decent songs. I am a sucker for the Shaft Theme. So we are up to eighteen 8 tracks. There are only 7 slots left in the carrying case. That means I need to get more specific in what we want for the small collection. I am thinking KISS would be cool. How about a disco compilation. Or Captain & Tennille, who I thought were cool when I was a wee child. There’s something about a guy in a captain's hat and a chick with Dorothy Hamill hair.

The husband and I started heading south. I used the web site to find somewhere worth checking out. This is my second time using it through my phone's internet. It was okay. The reviews could be recent or years old. But it gave us a place to start. The husband does the driving and I navigate.

We tried Goodwill in St Augustine. They had more than just clothes! Lots of books. The husband found a putt return thingy. I found a book about what to do with your life - thinking of my oldest niece and her eternal question. I also found an elephant hand puppet. Not that I need more puppets, but it was $0.59. There were plenty of golf related items. Of course the St Augustine people are into that. I kept pointing each item out to the husband since he keeps buying golf items, but still hasn't golfed.

Then it was onto The Betty Griffin House thrift store. It was in a shopping center set back from the road in what looked like a very old grocery store. It was, like we have found with Domestic Violence thrift stores, filled with all sorts of things. I like that - good finds and a great cause. The husband found 3 more 8 tracks, all from Dick Clark's American Bandstand. Lots of good songs and one was wrapped in plastic. That's a real treat, unused. We found a lighthouse mouse for the father in-law. I found a snowflake trivet.

The Betty Griffin web site says they have a second thrift store. An excuse to check out another store. Yeah! I hope it is as good as the other one. I have found that having no expectation works for thrift stores just as it does with coworkers. Just when you think nothing will be found you find something you really needed.

Then we went hunting for the Humane Society thrift store, which was no longer for Humane Society. I forget what it was but they were involved in children’s education. They had a bit of everything and it went on for several rooms.

We found two old, wood TV trays for $1.50 each. I found a few books. One was an old cookbook. Yes, the many blogs I read are having an effect on me. Plus wouldn't a redone kitchen look good with some old cookbooks.

Finally we ended up at a St Vincent de Paul Thrift store. We never made it to the one in Jacksonville during our all day trip there, so we were curious. The sign says they help people who need help. The store looked like an antique store. They had a TON of books. Since I already bought 4 I figured I better not look. They had some serious antiques, but the prices were higher. We were only 2/3 of the way through the store when they announced (making me jump like someone was saying it right behind me) they were closing. This was 20 minutes before their posted closing time. Plus they started turning off lights and hustling people out. So we left empty handed.

The husband wanted to check out Georgie's Diner since we had been talking about Greek food. He had the grape leaves and a Gyro. I had Chicken Kosta. It was yummy and filling. They could make perfume out of the awesome smell of garlic, lemon, chicken, broccoli and mushrooms.

Since we were so close to the Converse outlet store I brought that stop up. The husband first wanted to check out the other outlet mall on the east side of I-95. I always thought that one had nothing good, but of course he found a clothing store that he found camo jeans. He ended up with a pair of camo jeans, carpenter jeans and a pair of regular jeans for less than $60.00. Yeah, he annoys me. Today he counted and he has 9 pairs of jeans.

Finally we made it to the Converse Outlet. I couldn't believe how many people were in there. I almost fell over when I saw all the low priced shoes in my size had no hi tops. The husband revived me by reminding me it was back to school shopping time. Once I revived I realized I would have to come back another time to catch a deal. I was still depressed, but have hope of finding something on my next visit. The prices do appear to keep getting higher and I don't like tons of people messing with my outlet store.

I got the husband to buy me a Wendy's berry parfait. It was berry good, but I was still depressed after it was such a small bit of ice cream for the price. It looked so big in the commercial. Wendy's, you are letting me down. We drove home and I wallowed in my misery by going online to rate the stores on the Thrift Shopper website.

I must confess...

Somehow the husband and I ended up talking about Chick Flicks. Of course he only admits to liking Hope Floats for the Garth Brooks song. I think that is a cop out and he probably secretly loves Sandra Bullock.

I am not a fan of chick flicks. I despise Lifetime movies. You can tell what is going to happen and they are so unrealistic. I can see how they are an escape for people, but I don’t enjoy them. Yet there are a few chick flicks that I enjoy and will watch again and again.

1. Love Actually

Why: British folks are hilarious. Great cast. Intertwined stories. Good music. Wonderful cinematography.

2. Bridget Jones Diary

Why: Goofy. British folks are hilarious. I love Colin Firth. Hugh Grant looks like a fool.

3. When Harry Met Sally

Why: Billy Crystal. Bruno Kirby. Carrie Fisher. New York City is a character and it sees every season. Spans years. Great dialogue. Funny. Quotable.

So we have a common theme… dialogue and cinematography to excuse my liking specific “chick flicks”.

And I like Bride Maids because it was the anti-chick flick. Of course I laughed harder than the husband, but it was cute.

I don't agree with some of the choices. Aliens is not a chick flick. Yes, it is about a strong, empowered woman. But it isn't sappy like I would say a chick flick can be.

So I went to another site for a top list. I went to IMDB since they are my go to source of all things movie.

1. The Notebook 2004

2. Moulin Rouge! 2001

3. Pride & Prejudice 2005

4. Sleepless in Seattle 1993

5. The Lake House 2006

6. Kate & Leopold 2001

7. How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days 2003

8. While You Were Sleeping 1995

9. You've Got Mail 1998

10. When Harry Met Sally... 1989

I have seen 6 out of these 10. Yet only one made my top list. Hmmmm.

I tried a different approach. How about the top chick flicks for men...

Chick flicks for guys

Number 10

Meet Joe Black (1998)

Number 9

Desperately Seeking Susan (1985)

Number 8

Thelma & Louise (1991)

Number 7

An Officer and a Gentleman (1982)

Number 6

When Harry Met Sally (1989)

Number 5

Serendipity (2001)

Number 4

The Craft (1996)

Number 3

Blue Crush (2002)

Number 2

Mean Girls (2004)

Number 1

Bridget Jones’s Diary (2001)

So, no matter what movie you watch or admit to liking, people have different opinions on what exactly a chick flick is.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

The Blah Weekend

The only thing we planned to do this weekend was mow the yard. A few hours into Saturday morning it was done. The first mow with the new riding mower. That thing is sweet. I did like the bucking of the borrowed mower on takeoff, but the new mower puts that old one to shame. The new mower can cut anything. The only thing it chugs through is the areas heavy with leaves and acorns.

We cooled down, ate lunch and pondered what to do with the rest of the day. We took off toward the college town and wandered. I read a story rom Marjorie Keenan Rawlings book Cross Creek to the husband while we passed through. I was trying not to send him towards thrift stores for once, but with no destination in mind we had no other choice.

We checked out what was posted on the Domestic Violence shelter’s site as their thrift store. The sign said Consignment shop. We went in leerily. We found it girly and retail priced. Nothing there for us. I saw some of the owl themed merchandise I see so much on the thrift and retro blogs.

Then we tried the Humane Society thrift store. It was right behind the adoption center. It was better than the consignment shop, but we still found nothing that struck us. I was hoping, but I didn’t feel the vibe that something good was awaiting us. I am utterly disappointed in most of what I have seen in Gainesville. The Hospice Thrift Store is the only one I would go back to.

We discussed how when we drove through Micanopy and saw it was mainly antique stores how the husband has no interest in those stores. I must agree. I go into an antique store and rarely see anything I like, let alone something I would buy. I want to know it’s a good store before I venture. I guess I would be more open to it is the husband was willing. So far he puts up with the thrift store trend. Plus he find just as much as I do in them.

We wandered home and watched TV.

Today we slept late and the husband cooked a good breakfast. We had no idea what we wanted to do. I showed and dressed. We headed out to free style. The husband had been sniffling. We ate lunch, and then went on our way to nowhere. We tried the Goodwill in town thinking it was closed on Sundays. We found it open with a handful of customers. He found a 99 cent tennis racket. I found a book on Freud and women which I passed on. I figured it would be a boring read. I will just talk to my Freudian ex-supervisor for the topic of roles.

We drove around the quiet country roads talking about how I felt blah and he felt drained from his cold or whatever it is he has. Driving around didn’t hold the fun that it usually does for him. He decided to go home and rest. I decided to go online and live vicariously through others’ blogs. We both agreed that we needed to have something planned for next weekend.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Drop it like it's hot...

(Not actual ceiling, but dang close)

Last week we spent all day and night putting up a drop ceiling. I know, everyone does that on their weekends these days. We live in an old double wide trailer. The previous owner did a lot of things to the house. I am not sure what and if any of it was any good. But he was a contractor. For some reason only the living room and dining room had vaulted ceilings. Between the ceiling and the tin roof there isn’t much of anything. The roof could literally fry bacon. We have fans all over the house and an old AC unit. We are still sweltering and many times it is cooler outside than inside.

We have talked about drop ceilings for the past year. Then last month the husband found ceiling tiles for $5 a box. Yes, you heard me, Five Dollars. The boxes regularly sell for fifty some dollars a box of 16 tiles. These tiles weren’t selling and the store lowered and lowered and lowered the price the longer they sat. The tiles were waiting to come home to live with us.

About a year back the husband saw the ceiling braces for a great deal at the Habitat Restore. He didn’t get them then since we weren’t ready for the project. Now the Restore sold them all 3 weeks before we checked back on them. We paid full price for the braces etc but it was still a deal.

The ceiling looks like the house came with it. I don’t even feel boxed in like I worried I might. The ceiling fans are doing a better job since they don’t have to fight the wasted space above them. Yet the extremely hot weather this summer makes it remain in the 80s inside the house. The husband is peeved since he thought it would be more comfortable. The next step will be insulation above the drop ceiling. After that the plan is to save our pennies for a new AC.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Have I mentioned my new obsession?

I have been nesting for the past year, ever since we moved to the house. I went from reading about home design and decorating online (and finding out somewhere I picked up a mid century modern preference)to thrifting. I have been an occasional shopper at Goodwill and Salvation Army, as well as a donator.

I have had an interest in the Habitat Restore since it was so close to the old house. Months back I found bright blue commercial composite floor tile for $15 a box for my future kitchen remodel and have been searching for more flooring. A trip to a Charlotte NC Habitat Restore found the same tiles for $30 a box. I was appalled. After such a deal there was no going back for me. They had a zillion color choices, but the deal wasn't there. I had to go all the way to the Habitat Restore in Jacksonville, FL for $18 a box pale green tile that will soon cover my sage green living room. I also found that the Jacksonville Restore has kitchen cabinets, even whole kitchen sets. I know where I want to go when I go to purchase cabinets.

I also found a amber swag light at the Restore. It was so 60s/70s I just had to have it for my living room. The husband rewired it for me. It takes a grand place in my living room with its long chain cord.

(not actual light, but similar)

At the same store I thought I had found a $2 car 8 track player. Ended up I must have seen what I wanted to see and it is just an am/fm tape player. It is still an awesome deal.

Now when we are riding around on the weekend I use the phone GPS and find any thrift or Restores in the area. Some weekends I wish we drove a large vehicle so I could get more stuff. Mainly we look. My sister in law came to visit the other weekend and we spent all day Saturday going to every thrift store we could find on Beach Blvd in Jacksonville. We decided that the best deals was at the domestic violence shelter, Hubbard House's thrift store. I knew it would be good when the sign out front said 50% off. Oh yeah, we found the most stuff there. The husband surprised me with a practice putting green to help me with the backyard mini golf course I am planning.

What I have learned since being thrift crazy these months is that I am still more of a looker than a buyer. The husband likes a deal, but isn't into looking at housewares and decor. My father in law has gone out with us several times. Although he is an long time thrift store shopper, he doesn't buy things. The husband likes the drive and spending time with us. I like the hunt. I like to check out the stores and deciding if they are worthy of another visit.

The problem is that most areas have at least a few thrift stores. Within a couple hours from us are a lot of cities. This may be a dangerous hobby. But rather than just drive and see the sites through the car window as we have done for years, now we have stops and searches for locations that may not be there. The GPS lady is notorious for sending us on goose chases.

Other things I have learned is that there are a buttload of people who write blogs about thrifting. Some are quite entertaining and I already have some favorites. Most are repetitive. As in, how many people can there possibly be that are obsessed with Pyrex? I have yet to notice a Pyrex anything at a store. There are people who are on a quest to make their whole home look like it came out of the 950s/60s and/or 70s. People who dress the dress, walk the walk and talk the talk. Many of these folks also sell on Esty, Ebay and/or Craigslist. I don't have this type of determination or focus.

Occasionally I pick things up that I wouldn't normally, but obviously the sites I read have gotten into my head. So I need to refocus and remind myself on what my objective is. The husband thinks I have an obsession with electronics since I brought home the car radio/tape player, a console with record player/radio, clock radio and a school slide viewer. I have pondered this and yes, I do like an old school working electronic. Yet it also is about finding things that remind me of my youth. Growing up my parents decorated the house in antiques, early century antiques. In my own way I am decorating in antiques, but more of a 50 years old or less version. Also, I think the stuff just looks cool.