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Shopping My Closet

001  Shopping My Closet!

  I received a compliment from a friend the other day on the outfit I was wearing.

  When she asked where I got it I replied “I shopped my closet”.

  My friend asked where this shop was located and I repeated to her that what I was wearing came from my closet and that I had just “shopped my own closet”!

I explained further that I was not working much these days, basically just delivering some part time Training.  I was transitioning into retirement mode and trying to cut back on spending and part of my restraint program involved a personal challenge to stop buying unnecessary clothing.

I have always loved fashion and take great pleasure in shopping for clothes. The result was a closet bulging with so many items I had a tough time finding ‘anything to wear’!

New items would be purchased and added to the already overflowing closet and although I did on rare occasions clear out that which I didn’t fit or wear much I knew that I had more than enough to wear without buying more.

Shopping, although fun and therapeutic at times, had become a costly habit for me!

014My closet is not large and yet it isn’t too small either and I knew it wasn’t more space I needed.
I needed to organize the space I already had.

Organizing my closet space would aid my motivation to ‘shop my closet’ instead of a store.

I devised a plan to clean out my closet and organize it in a way that I could clearly see and find outfits that I actually wore.

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In the past I had thought about removing seasonal clothes however it seemed like too much work at the time. In spite of this I started with the removal process and I eventually removed EVERYTHING with the intention of only putting back what I actually wore regularly!

 Having freed up some space allowed me to spread out my outfits and be able to clearly see what I had available to wear. I tried on everything and if the buttons were bulging or the waistline too tight they were sent off to the Thrift Shop.  Interestingly, I did not come across any items that were too loose, just too tight!
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I found things that I had forgotten I had. I discovered ‘shamefully’, outfits I had never worn.

I had more than enough to wear and the best things were jammed in where I couldn’t even see them!

 So now that I have completed this mountainous task I can ‘shop my closet’ and revisit items that are like new.

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So take a peek in my closet and think of me the next time you say

“I have nothing to wear” and consider “shopping YOUR closet”!

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6 Comments

Posted by on July 9, 2013 in Open for Discussion

 

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DANCING IN THE KITCHEN

DANCING IN THE KITCHEN

In years gone by we would go out dancing. I loved dancing and considered it a much needed work out as much as a way to connect with others. When I think back, this was a fitting attitude for me to employ since I lacked any rhythmic or dancing talent. However lack of dancing ability never held me back. With arms flailing and feet gyrating, in beat or not, I threw myself into the fast moving heat of the moment. We would dance until we literally worked up a sweat, resting a moment, refreshing ourselves with cocktails and rehydrating with water and then joining back with the other frenzied dancers under the shimmering mirror ball on the dance floor of the disco. I wasn’t kidding when I said ‘in years gone by’.
disco ball
At most dances there was little to no conversation as I recall as the booming music was deafening loud. Once we outgrew the discos we would still join others and kick up our heels at a community dance or at a house party. Dancing the night away was a great way to spend time with friends and to work off those extra calories. Nowadays we don’t go out dancing much however after dinner we do crank up the music and let loose with our uninhibited and unrestrained moves. Some nights we groove to oldies, other nights we dance close and lovingly sway to old romantic favorites.

After dinner at our daughter’s home her kitchen also becomes a dance floor. She, her husband and two kids amuse us with their astonishing and exceptional smooth moves. The songs are often sung or belted out karaoke style, sometimes a budding musician pounds out a mysterious tune on the piano or guitar, mostly our daughter chooses pop tunes of her era and we all shake our booty while the kids command the dance floor and put on the real show.
076air guitar 5kids dancing
We all join in during clean up and perform the quick step as we clear the table, bebop our way to the dishwasher, hip hop as we scrape leftovers into the waste bin, or slow dance by the light of the open refrigerator.
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One festive evening not too long ago there was cause to celebrate a birthday. Following dinner, our son-in-law Rob went into the kitchen to light the abundant candles on the birthday cake. The dancing music proceeded in full force and young and old were shaking and gyrating with vigour. Some with more enthusiasm than others, some with smooth moves and others taking calculated risks that involved injuring others. (Caution, dancing is not a spectator sport and can cause injuries.) Meanwhile one song ended, another began. This new song Bohemian Rhapsody happened to be a big favorite of Rob’s. The words of this song are gruesome,‘Mama I Killed a Man’ but has become an all time favorite and is sung at most celebration dinners. Why that song? Honestly I don’t know or we just can’t remember.

However, the lit cake was left abandoned on the counter as Rob wholeheartedly grabbed center stage (a coveted floor space dividing dining room and kitchen) and danced off his entire meal plus amazed us with his innate aptitude at playing air guitar! While directly behind him scores of small fires were glowing brightly, smoke was curling upwards, candles were delicately melting and a coconut topped cake was browning. The aroma of the toasting coconut alerted us to the kitchen being ablaze mere seconds before the fire alarm drowned out the blasting music. You can see the burning cake in the background of the following picture.burning cakeG Bday Cake 2011
Much to our hilarity the cake was presented and enjoyed, melted candles, toasted coconut and all. It was a night of dancing not to be forgotten…

A few notes…
Dancing is all about letting go of your inhibitions so don’t try to look cool because dancing is all about having fun. Following are my personal three commandments of dancing:

1. Thou shall let go of restrictions and allow the music to draw you in
2. Thou shall just relax, get up off that chair, feel the music and bend your knees, one leg at a time while channelling your natural fun seeking and creative impulses
3. Thou shall not light birthday candles until the song ends…

Following is a youtube link that teaches you how to dance to Lip Gloss by Little Mama

 
14 Comments

Posted by on June 15, 2013 in Open for Discussion

 

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SWEET SPOT

Sometimes when I’m curled up on the couch with a cup of tea, comfortably relaxed and enjoying one of my favorite things which is reading, the sun shines down from the skylight like a spotlight, glowing, sparkling, warming me and gently illuminating the words I am reading.  I call this the ‘sweet spot’.sweet spot

 
6 Comments

Posted by on May 25, 2013 in Bits & Bites

 

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PERSEVERANCE

PERSEVERANCE

THE ART OF PERSEVERANCE

WEBSTER’S DICTIONARY DEFINITION:  PERSEVERE – TO TRY HARD AND CONTINUOUSLY IN SPITE OF OBSTACLES AND DIFFICULTIES

Many skills are required to be successful in sales. Etsy sellers require creative skills, marketing skills, time management skills, search engine optimization (SEO) skills, sales and customer service skills, and social media and technology skills. And yet all these skills pale in contrast to perseverance, which is the one skill that often, makes up for our deficiencies in other areas.  Having perseverance allows us to be successful no matter what obstacles are placed in front of us.087

It isn’t a cake walk to meet sales and marketing challenges head on while wading through the competition and dealing with customer service issues.  And yet many of us know what we need to do and yet we simply don’t do it.  We sometimes spend our time looking for an easy way out rather than using the path of determination and perseverance and doing what we need to do even when we don’t feel like doing it .  We want to achieve multiple sales, lose weight or get rich instantly! We want immediate gratification and we don’t want to do the painstaking, persistent and thorough work that it takes to achieve these successes. I believe that the ability to persevere is the key to success in all walks of life.

Remember the children’s storybook about “The Little Engine That Could?”

Courtesy of RoadsidePhotos

Courtesy of RoadsidePhotos

Talk about determination and perseverance!  Perhaps the best technique to conquer the skill of perseverance is to just start. Sometimes just beginning a task is often the most difficult.  However once you begin, you pick up the drive that leads to your success and accomplishment.  never ever ever give up!

We must learn to persevere in whatever task we take on. I’ve been married for a large number of years and if anyone were to ask “how have you hung in there so long?”  I would of course first reply that being married to such an easy-going, lovable, man makes it easy; however I sincerely believe that having the ability to persevere is also very critical!

In the best of marriages you have your moments when it just seems like too much work and it would be so easy to say “adios my fine fellow” but by persevering through the hard stuff you reap amazing long-term rewards.

We need to practice being determined and persistent.  Whether it is simply exercising, learning a new skill, staying in a relationship or working diligently on our SEO, we need to resolve that we will persevere until the task is completed or until we are satisfied with our results and ready to move on.

Desire may be the key to motivation, but it’s through determination and perseverance while in pursuit of our goals that enables us to attain the success we seek.  Many of us remember being told when we were young that “a job worth doing was worth doing well” followed up with “do it well or don’t do it at all.” Perseverance, in my humble opinion, is the one skill that guarantees your success!

What do you think?

Which skill do you consider to be of importance in attaining success in life?

 
7 Comments

Posted by on April 4, 2013 in Open for Discussion

 

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Etsy Time

Etsy Time

045BLACK CROW CURIOS believes in creative reuse by reclaiming and transforming cast off items into useful and decorative home accents.  Beach combing and the inspiration of the outdoors are essential components of the BLACK CROW CURIOS design process.

Take a look around Black Crow Curios, you may discover an item that you just can’t live without…

Click on this link to learn more About BlackCrowCurios an Etsy Shop:

https://www.etsy.com/shop/BlackCrowCurios/about?ref=announce

Visit my online shop at:

http://www.etsy.com/shop/BlackCrowCurios

048043IMG00266-20120807-1011

Etsy Time

How much time are you devoting to your online business?

I am finding that I am spending wayyyyy more time on my Etsy Shop than I had imagined I would. Literally 5 or 6 hours some days. I don’t have an addictive personality, however when I do decide to do something I get 100% involved and I have to be careful that when I ‘power up my computer’ and sit down at my desk I don’t get sucked into the Etsy vacuum and lose myself in the reading, absorbing and applying of what I am learning.

Normally I keep my life balanced. Allowing and enjoying time for family, friends, real job, hiking, kayaking, creating something and yet lately I’ve begun to feel that I am spending more time than I had expected to allot to an online business. Some of this time is very constructive, interacting in the discussions, learning new strategies and applying them, but I need to come up for a breath now and then and determine where best to put my time here, and my hope is that this time will all be well spent, like sowing seeds for a later harvest…

How much time is too much?

Etsy Shop Link: http://www.etsy.com/shop/BlackCrowCurios

About BlackCrowcurios an Etsy shop: https://www.etsy.com/shop/BlackCrowCurios/about?ref=announce

Happy 2013!

My Etsy shop is new and I don’t have a ‘previous year’ to compare it to, so while my Etsy team members are preparing for their approach to 2013 and setting goals, I’m more focused on my accomplishments and reflecting on what I have learned.

And I have learned and accomplished plenty!

I’ve learned that opening an Etsy shop is time-consuming and comes with an enormous learning curve. I’ve accomplished opening a shop, stocking it with Barn Window Mirrors, Driftwood Boats and Hooks and Folk Art and I am actually making sales from people other than my friends and family. People unknown to me actually felt my product was worth purchasing. Go figure…

In reviewing my successes in 2012 the only thing I know for sure is that I am exactly where I need to be. I enjoy being creative and I required an outlet to sell my product so opening an Etsy shop was the right solution.

So what does 2013 bring?

I learned that if you want an honest critique from your team that is exactly what you will get. If you want compliments ask your friends and family! I have learned many things from the team I have joined, such as my photos are horrible, dark and cluttered and my shop is not cohesive. • So 2013 will see new brighter product photos, a more cohesive look and a paring down of product line. • To increase my shop’s reach I am learning the INS and OUTS of social media. So ‘friend’ me on face book, ‘like’ me on my blog, ‘save’ me on Wanelo and ‘pin’ me on Pinterest.

Basically I am requesting all your hearts and attention…

My Question To You: What have YOU accomplished in 2012 and what Business Strategies work best for YOU?

Etsy Shop Link: http://www.etsy.com/shop/BlackCrowCurios About BlackCrowCurios Etsy shop: https://www.etsy.com/shop/BlackCrowCurios/about?ref=announce

Visit my online shop at: http://www.etsy.com/shop/BlackCrowCurios

After some wild winds and big swells some lovely pieces of driftwood were washed up on our shore.  Perfect for Sailboats and coat racks!After some wild winds and big swells some lovely pieces of driftwood were washed up on our shore. Perfect for Coat Racks!
 
5 Comments

Posted by on February 3, 2013 in Etsy Shop Talk

 

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