old timer

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Sending a Box??? Here’s An Idea For Cheap, Lightweight Filling

Hello!  How are ya???  I be just fine … thank you!!! 

HEY!  Have you ever gone to ship a package and you see what the price will be and you just can’t believe it???  I mean, come on!  The price of every thing has gone up so high its crazy!!!  WELL!  I don’t mean every thing!  I’m sure your pay check hasn’t kept up with the economy and the continuous rising cost of food, gas, etc.!!!  Okay, okay! 

I just sent a package to Minnesota and it had a couple picture frames in it.  The problem was,,, there was no backing behind the glass.  So, the pieces were extremely vulnerable to what ever wonderful, gentle care our nice post office employees would give this box.

SO!  Here’s a little trick I learned from an artist friend Kim Groff-Harrington.

SO!  First off!  Find a box that will be a little bit bigger than the contents you will “stuff” into it.  You need some room for filling.

In this case, I wrapped each picture frame with a few pieces of paper, put paper between them, and then wrapped them in quite a few layers of bubble wrap.


Then I slid that into the box.

As you can see, there’s room on the side and the top.

Next I took my secret filler !!!!!!!!! 

YEP!  That is an egg carton.

Think about those eggs for just a second or two.  The “farmer” puts his eggs inside that carton and then ships them to a store.  By the time that carton of eggs gets from the farmer to you, it’s been through a lot and has little to no breakage.  That’s pretty good.  It means ,,, your egg cartons are very sturdy.  They are also very light in weight. 

My box wasn’t empty enough to put the whole carton in. 

carton too big!!!

SO!  I tore the top off


placed it in the hole you see down the side of the box. 


Now, the top of the box is too small for the bottom of the egg carton to fit. 

SO!  I just tore off a couple of the “cups” the eggs sat in


and placed them into that hole. 



It needed a few pairs. 

I even threw in a little bit of the leftovers from the egg carton.

As you can see, the box is pretty full. 

Now, I just close the lid on the box and give it a easy little shake.  I want to feel and hear what the packaging and the box sound like.  Do you feel the contents of the box moving around?  If so, maybe you need a little more stuffing.  In my case, this was just the right amount. 

SO!  I sealed the box and weighed it. 

I like to write down the weight on the box.  I have this thing about forgetting stuff.  I can do that in a heart beat.  This step just saves me from having to weigh the box again ,,, and again ,,, and again ,,, and ,,, you get it.

For me, I like to use the post office.  They send me boxes and many other supplies for free.  I just go on line, sign in (it’s easy to register), click on the boxes and labels I want, then wait for them to show up at my house a couple days later.  SCHWEET!!!! 

After I have the box ready to send I go online at USPS.com.  I sign in first.  Then I follow the directions for sending a package.  They tell me what it will cost and then I can print the label.  After I print the label I tape it to the box.  It’s ready to go!!!  I get a discount for buying my postage online.  I like that too.  It’s not a lot.  BUT!  If you send a lot of boxes, it adds up quickly.  Then if I want I can schedule a pick up date.  YEP!  They will pick it up right at your door.  I usually don’t.  I just wait for the postman to come up the stairs and set off my alarm … JOY!  Yep, the dog barks the second someone steps onto the front porch.  Love that dog … OH!  Here’s a new picture of her and Juliet. 

Joy nursing Juliet.  She did this for Macs when he first came to the house too!  She's so sweet!


Juliet finally figured out why every time she gets up on the couch with Joy, Joy lifts her back leg.  Joy always wanted to be a momma and never got to be until Macs and Juliet showed up.

I hope this explains this simple fact:  eggs need strong, lightweight protection and so does the contents of your packages you ship!

If you have any questions just drop me a note.  I’ll help!

Have a good one and thanks for stopping by!  Shelley

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Look What I Found This Time!!! PLUS an Ice Cream Topping Recipe

Sorry!  I have had a very full, fun week.  Earlier this week I got to go to an ice cream social.  HA!  When was the last time you got to go to one of those???  It was a hoot.  There were probably some 25 to 30 women there to eat ice cream, B.S. and listen to Jean Mann sing.  Oh man can she sing!  What a voice!!!  OH!  I told you I was going to let you know what ice cream topping I took! 


It's called ???  I don't know!  You just take one can of that german chocolate cake frosting.  You know,,, the one with coconuts and pecans in it.  OH YUM!  You melt one square, that's one ounce of UNsweetened chocolate in a medium size, microwavable bowl.  I put mine in the microwave on half power for 30 seconds.  Be careful, the bowl is extremely hot!  Well, mine was.  It's one of my grandma's old bowls.  You know, well before microwaving!  Then I stirred.  Did it again for 30 seconds and stirred again.  It was melted nearly all the way.  For me,,, close enough.  Just keep stirring and it will finish melting.  THEN ,,,  all you do is put that can of frosting into the melted chocolate and stir again.  Voila!!!  Instant ice cream topping that is SOOOOO good!!!  Give it a try.  Sorry I didn't get any pictures of it.  It's too easy though.  You can do it.  If not, let me know and I'll help!  I usually just put the mixture back in the can the frosting came in, pull off the paper wrapper, then write some thing fun on it with a fat permanent marker or 2 or 3 (all different colors) and maybe some stickers and a bow on top.  DONE and delish!!!

On Thursday I got to go in for a fantastic deep tissue massage from my friend Nancy.  She's the best.  I have this nasty little back problem.  Nancy knows just how to make it all better.  When she's done, I usually go home and crash for a couple hours and let her magic do its tricks.

Then Friday, my granddaughter came over and we went to the Evergreen State Fair in Monroe, ALL DAY!  Damn I'm getting old!  We had a ball.  I'm sure we walked a minimum of 5 miles.  It was so much fun.  Yep!  We ate our way through the fair.  Is there any thing better than fair food?  HUH?  Oh come on.  If you are like me,,, I only get it every few years.  SO!  I eat it all.  YEP!  I had salmon, corn on the cob, frozen lemonade and a giant elephant ear,,, she made me share it!!!  Oh well.  It was so good!  I almost forgot the cotton candy.  YUM!  Pink and blue all in one.  We shared that too!  We even went on several rides. She threw a few balls and darts and won a turtle that she shared with JOY!  OOPS!  The fair was a ball!  WEEHAW!

Well, back to the real story!  Last week when Joy and I were out walking we found tons of goodies in the alley.  I mean, you could have filled a small house with what we found!  I mean 2 love seats, one full sized couch, one king size bed, 2 or 3 end tables, 3 or 4 chairs, an end table, a lamp, a couple TVs, lots of clothing, a few pots and pans, lots of scrap metal, an empty 5 gallon bucket (you'll see it later!), a small oak table (in need of a little repair that is now in my driveway), a shutter door (please don't look in my driveway), a car window (stop!  don't go back there!), a FAITH sign (don't trip over it!) and a cute little footstool (yes, it's in my driveway too!).  Like I said, we found tons of stuff!!!  Most of it was in pretty good shape.

SO!  Ready for a couple pictures????  Meeeeee tooooo!!!

Remember that picture of all the animals stacked on top of each other???  Well, this is the north Everett alley version! 

I'm always in need of an extra empty bucket around here.  When I'm working on metal, I put the scraps directly into one of these buckets.  Then when I'm ready to go to the metal recycle shop, it's ready to go with me.

This little table is in pretty good shape.  One leg needs some fixing at the joint.  That's pretty easy to do!

The scrap metal, under the table, I picked that up because I can use it later when I want to buy from the recycle shop.  I just take in my scraps, sell them, then use that money to help pay for what I'm buying and taking home.  That makes cents in my book. 

That sweet little footstool needs to be either a cat bed or a dog bed!  Soon!  Very soon!  I'm thinking it should go to the next show I'm in (I hope I'm in) Falala in December at the Schack Center.

I'm not sure which show this will go to.  Probably Falala. 

I love to find stuff like this.  It will go very cheap.  Some one will be happy!!!  It's in perfect shape too!

I use a lot of doors, shutters and windows in my art work and in my display set up.  This will come in very handy!

Did I mention the car window I found???  I'll tell you what I'm doing with it later! 

That my friends is a KEEPER!!!  I was told the other day I'm still getting this big kiln.  This windshield needs a make over!!!

OH!  And there were some great 2X4's in the alley too!  SCHWEET!!!


These 2X4's will come in very handy when I build the garden bench from the old Ford pick up tail gate.

As you can see I have a problem.  With my type of art comes certain needs.  Like that garden bench.  I need lots of wood for it.  SO!  You find as much of it as you can.  While doing that the pile grows and grows.  The car window.  It's just waiting for me to clean it, and clean it, and clean it some more!!!  Then it's ready for me to break it up and store it until it's time to melt it!  The table needs some repair, then some paint, then it's going to Sorticulture!  WELL!  That's 10 months away!  Storeage!!!  I never have enough storeage room!  It's the down side of my style of art.  BUT!  It's so much fun!!!!

SO!  Find any thing fun lately?  Gone to any fairs lately??  Did you eat every thing there too???  I sure hope so!

Have a good one and thanks for stopping by!  Shell

Monday, August 20, 2012

Fresh Paint Was SOOOO Much Fun!!!

OK!  I’m wiped out!  I had so much fun last weekend at Fresh Paint. 

I spend so much time talking to people I only get to see a couple times a year!  When I get home I’m wiped out from the excitement and the great energy I get from all of you!  THANK YOU SO MUCH!  You guys are the best!!!  For those of you who wanted to come and just couldn't.  I missed you!  Hopefully you'll make it next year!!!

It was a warm, wonderful 2 days at the bay.  The scenery was great.  The people were great!  AND!  I even had the luck of being in the right booth when a young man and woman sat in the grass across from me and played folk music for at least half an hour!  That was fun!

By the time Sunday was nearly over a couple came by to look at some thing I made that just didn’t do it for any one!  Darn the luck, huh?  Well, they were these funky signs for your yard or garden made from license plate letters.  I had been thinking of taking them home and tearing them apart. AND, then I was thinking they wouldn’t be worth the trouble.  Oh what to do!!!  SO!  When they asked about one of them I made them a deal.  If you take the 6 left you can have them all for NOTHING!!!  They loved the idea but didn’t feel good about it.  So, after they told me where they parked (they needed to get their vehicle), I learned they had to walk through the Farmers Market going on next door.  OH DID I SCORE!!!  We negotiated a great price!!!  They went and got their car, drove it close to my booth and brought me back an ice cream bar.  O.M.G.  !!!  It was triple berry REAL ice cream made locally AND it was dipped in dark chocolate!!!  We are talking 4 ish in the afternoon, an hour left of the show and my energy was at next to zero!  MAN!  The ice cream got me back in motion and after they left, it was time to clean up! 

I had just started to pack up when this darling, young couple came up and wanted to buy the potting bench I made for Sorticulture.  It was perfect timing.  Yep!  I knocked a couple bucks off of it and they handed over the cash, and then drove their car home to pick up the pick up ,,, TRUCK!  Then came back, picked it up and I was just about ready to fill my truck.  What a perfect ending for a show  Thanks kids!!!

On my way home I did myself a favor.  After every show I stop some place and find some thing wonderful to eat for dinner.  This time it was Brooklyn Brother’s Pizza across the street from Comcast Arena.  A short wait and I took my TWO slices (just cheese please!) home and crashed.  I’m not sure if I moved after that.  J

Tonight I picked up Joy and we are one big, happy, hairy, family again.  Tomorrow I’m headed to lunch with Stacie Rife, and then later to Janet Foley’s for an ice cream social and to hear Jean Mann sing.  What a wonderful day it will be.  I’m bringing a fun ice cream topping!  I’ll give you the recipe AFTER the ice cream social.  Can’t spoil the surprise!  It’s a great, different topping and it only takes 2 ingredients to make it!!!!  You’ll love it!  WELL!  I hope you will. 

Here's a couple pictures from my booth.  CHECK out the dress form turned earring holder.  She was the hit of the weekend!!!

First, my view.  Can you see all the sail masts??? 
 I CAN!!!

I love this as a display.  People HAD to come look at it.   As the morning went on, I added many more pairs of earrings and bracelets to her.  She was such a good girl!!!

She loves earrings!!!

This is one of Janet Foley's fish that I got to add the middle section to!  That's part of an old air conditioning unit.  It's smashed and falling apart!!!  OH!  He sold!  

Could you see the lady in the background of the last picture?  She was listening to the music that was playing across the walk way from me.  She, her husband and their kids were on a blanket, eating lunch and dancing off and on.  As time went on, other people stopped and danced with them.  The kids were having a ball.

Yes, I stole this idea off Pinterest!  It was easy and it got a lot of good comments.  They liked how easy it was to see the necklaces!

This was the first necklace I sold.  The buyer went around the show and showed several of her friends.  YEP!  They came over next and we had a ball!

Booth shot, before most of my stuff was set out.  Check out those boots!  They are part of my weights for my tent.  That and the old window weights!!!!

OK!  Obviously I’m tired.  I’m just rambling on and on and on and on AND…

Thanks for stopping by and have a good one!  Shell

Friday, August 17, 2012

Load ‘Em Up & Move ‘Em Out!!!

 Okay!  So, it’s not a rodeo, but it feels like one.  It’s time to load up the old truck and find my booth!  YEEHAW!!!  I love this time of the show.  I’m all excited to get there and then when I do,,, YEP!  I get very nervous.  EEK!  It’s like,,, what am I doing here???  Is my work good enough???  Will any one like it???  Will any of it sell??? Is it going to rain?  HEY!  This is Washington!  EEK!  Then it’s what did I forget?  That’s the big one and yes!  I always, I mean ALWAYS forget something!!!  BUT!  That’s okay.  One of the main reasons for doing shows like Sorticulture and Fresh Paint is they are only 3 or 4 miles from my house.  It doesn’t get much better than that.

SO!  Here’s the last few pictures and blog info until after the show. 

"hey!  mom's lost it!!!"
That's one of my boxes full of goodies Macs is "resting" on!

A very old frame filled with hot glass globs and old bottles!  The recycled glass heart is from Bedrock Industries in Seattle.

From this angle you can see what I used.

Honestly, I wasn't sure if this would work out or not! 

Hang this in a sunny window and this is what you should see!!!

The box is made from 2 license plates and 3 pieces of wood!!!

I love this color in the garden!

Secrets of the Operator!

The pendant....

Close up of the key to the operator!

Vintage Operator button.

A safety pin, some coiled recycled steel wire, some recycled copper wire and a Key make up one side of the necklace!


I hope you enjoyed the pictures.  I haven’t taken the time to get better pictures!  SORRY!  I get a little crazy during the last couple days before a show.


I hope to see you there!!!!!!!!!!!!

If you want to come to the show and you are worried about a parking place, park at the Everpark Garage (it’s free on the weekends) on Hoyt and Hewitt, then take the bus.  If you buy some thing at the show, leave it there, get your car and come back to pick it up!  Easy, peasy!

Rumor has it Friday is supposed to be in the 90’s.  That’s stinkin’ hot for around here.  To me, that feels like 110 degrees in Yuma, AZ.  The great part about this show is we are right next to the bay.  I mean my booth will be, maybe, 30 feet from the water.  It’s cooler next to the bay!!!  Amy Duncan and Janet Foley are down the promenade from me and I’ll bet they can spit in the bay from their booths!  SCHWEET!  I mean being close!  Not spitting!  J

Talk to ya soon!!!!

Thanks for stopping by and have a good one!  Shell

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Janet Foley’s Fish and Fresh Paint Wind Chimes

Howdy!  Hey!  Ready to see some amazing glass and junk fish from Janet Foley???  I sure hope so!  BECAUSE ,,,, here they come!

Here's one of Janet's wonderful fish!!!! 

The skeleton and the eyes are made of recycled Stuff!!!!  The eye is made from the tops of beer, wine or pop bottles.  The body from electric ceramic parts and copper wire and pipe.

Another fish!  SCHWEET!!!

This eye came from a Coke bottle.  You can still see the writing that was on the bottle!!!

Now, do you remember those keys I found at the recycle center?  WELL!  Fresh Paint is a show that seems to sell those small, funky pieces of art for me.  SO!  Here’s a few wind chimes made from junk and those keys!!!

Rusted and keys!

A candle holder turned upside down.  The piece in the middle is the metal part of a ringer from an old telephone.  It has a wonderful sound when the keys bump up against it!

Mariner keys!

I wish this was a peace sign holding these Harley and skull keys!

The keys!  The guitar key is awesome!!!

An old garden shovel.

Lady bug keys.  What a great gift for the gardener!

HOT is where I was going here for the Huskies!

These are keys from a pay phone touch call pad.

Motorcycle license plate with Seahawk keys.

Motorcycle plate with Mariner keys!

A pair of old door knobs with girlie keys
and a chain necklace to hang it!  FUN!

After Fresh Paint is over,, we’ll have to talk about where to find CHEAP copper, steel and brass wire!!!

Thanks for looking at all the pictures.  Sorry they weren’t better.  I just needed to get out there quick, snap a few and get back to work.  I’m one of those who work their best under pressure!  I’d say waiting until the last week to get it in gear is working under pressure!!! J  If all goes well!  I’ll have some more pics tomorrow and then ,,,


I hope to see you there!!!!!!!!!!!!

Only 1 working day left before Fresh Paint!  EEEEEEEKKKKK!!!!

Thanks for stopping by and have a good one!  Shell