So, What’s Next?

After over a decade of trying to do the same thing, that is, getting rid of the store, I have no real idea what’s next?

I have a short story which is 1/2 done. A memoir that frankly I think will probably be a dead bore, but don’t quite know how to fix. And a house to paint. I have craft supplies I’m getting ready to sell in the new booth.

All chores. Not new directions, same old goals, just more easily accomplished now, well, more quickly if not easily.


Other things I do: bead work, make area rugs, read too much, cover journals.

At 60+ I’m in a totally unique space: I have not got the kid shit holding me down/back, I won’t have the end of the bookstore holding me back.

I suppose the next thing to do is what needs doing most. That is still get rid of books.I know a guy in RI who will come and get them by the truck load, and I have bookstores in ME an IN who I promised books to, so getting those boxes off is the absolute next step. There’s a bookstore in MA who would like some too.

What do I WANT to do?

I want to plant the garden and paint inside the house!

Both of which can’t happen just yet. The house still has too much clutter, the walls need prepping AND we have to solve the “How does she get up there?” problem.I need to be able to stand, flat footed and deal with the top of our walls. I’m tiny. I don’t want to work on a ladder for hours, which I’d have to, and so it’s an issue.

First house DH and I cohabited, when he moved out, he’d painted the ceiling of his bedroom (we were roommates). I asked him what he used to paint the ceiling? He replied, “I just stood.” Which is what happens when you marry someone over 6′. Even he can’t do that here, we have a post and beam ceiling in part of the house. Paint rollers on poles are fine, but the walls are all varnished and need to be both cleaned and sanded. Can’t do that with something on the end of a pole!

So it’s a problem.

We have a platform ladder, but whether it’s tall enough or not is an issue. DH will help, but I don’t think I can get him to do the top of every wall, cleaning, sanding and then painting, in every room of the house. Not to mention the ceilings. Maybe a few, but not all of them. Wanting to paint inside the house is my gig, not his.

First place I want to do is the living room. Now full of books, furniture and stuff. Part of this is waiting on more reliable weather, so I can pull things out of the living room onto the lawn, while working on the room. That is mid month probably, next month.

The garden? I planted the garlic cloves I’d had on the window sill in the kitchen since last fall, finally this week. I have a pot with soil outside and the bag of soil outside too. That’s part of today’s projects. It’s for early spring lettuces and/or herbs. We’ll see. Hopefully planting that and jugging up the seeds I need to do early otherwise will be enough to keep the gardening bug at bay until at least mid-May, when I’ll start direct seeding.



I have an acquaintance, a friend of a friend, who needs some work, not heavy and not a lot at once. I have too many things to do/get rid of, and the house is still a disaster.

So, I put 2 and 2 together and today we worked on the books. Took 2 boxes, 150 books to the donation bin in the next town.Yesterday I gave a friend a book she said she’d like, and she enjoyed it (Yay!) and there’s 2 more boxes of books in my car to go to the antique store, tomorrow a.m.

After years and years of slowly, methodically deducting books from the data base, I am FINALLY done. My inventory started as my collection, the books I bought for customers they didn’t want, and my Dad’s collection. Over the years people gave me books, sometimes a LOT of them. Many came to me on consignment.

Too many books.

I’m done. My inventory as of the end of 2015 is < $2,000. I don’t have to renew the data base software. But I do of course track the antiques and few books here and there I buy and sell.

You see, as the store was closing, I had a young person building me a data base, an online store. And, because I was focused on moving the store, setting up the new store and the 5,000 details attached to those two decisions, I hadn’t done backups. (You can see where this is going, yes?)

The separate disk the shop’s data was on, the old and the new, died. I lost almost all my data. So? So, for the past 12 years I’ve been culling, donating, selling books. Putting them in a new data base as I went, so I can deduct the $ amount from what I had when the store closed.

Still too many books, but I don’t have to do the data entry any more.Huzzah!

I will NOT miss all that typing, you think? Now I only have to track the new stuff coming in and I’ve got a notebook for that. Nearly losing my computer again last year cured me of wanting my inventory on a computer. One data loss like that was plenty — thanks!


Memoir Work

One sensible suggestion made by an editor friend was that I may have to simply retype the memoir to get a clean, uncorrupted file.

With that in mind, I retyped the front matter and chapter 1 this week, 10 pages total. It took me about 2 hours. The entire thing is about 90 pages total, which means, assuming that I type at approx. the same rate,  it will take me about 18 hours to retype the entire thing, or 16 more hours to finish it.

I expect the remainder will be faster than the first 10 pages because there are no title or half title pages, no dedication, no author’s word, just text and some illustrations. Call it 100 pages by the time I add a back cover and the illustrations inside. That’s still only 18 more hours, and it could save me an incredible amount of fighting with the vestiges of multiple edits, multiple sources, multiple computers and software.

Makes sense.

I was afraid that I would go through an emotional rollercoaster retyping the first chapter. But I will say that it’s an indication of how much I’ve healed  — that didn’t happen.

What pushed on me was the ever-growing  “in memoriam” list in the dedication. I’ve added two people in just the last six months. Mind, there is only one person in the dedication I don’t actually know, Paul McCartney.  He’s there for “Hey Jude,” as I couldn’t have written the thing if I’d jumped off that cliff long ago. I didn’t because of “Hey Jude,” so I think he belongs in the dedication. But, as I said, he’s the only person named there I haven’t met.

Hey, guess what world?

I can actually grow up at some point!

Having a career/life which isn’t based on being a wounded child is a new outlook for me. I’m a bit apprehensive and jazzed, as I think I should be.


Changing My World, Again

The chair sold — hurrah! Today’s task when I get to it, is to empty the bookcase in the storage and take it to the antique store, for sale. Seeing a trend here? Or, I can take the small modern side tables — either way, something is going — today!

[I took one of the modern side tables, the “orphan.” It sold! 3/18 :-)]

Had an appt. today, it got canceled. So I have unexpected free time. I’ve filled this with doing some necessary yard work (Did the springy rake get put away somewhere mysterious — or did it get stolen? Possible I’m afraid.)

I have 3 writing projects midstream, one for my “day job,” one with a friend I’m writing an article with, and one for a friend who asked my help organize a history thing.

All have been sent to the other folks and are awaiting input — more unexpected time!

So, I’m off to the storage to get tables or bookcase to the antique store (Unfortunately, the spinner hasn’t sold, for $5. Given that, I’ll probably throw it in the back of the car and just take it to the dump Saturday. But I anticipate more pieces gone and quickly!

I’ve been working continually on our bedroom. I’m running out of places to stash the “I don’t know what to do with this” stuff. This is the part I dread. It isn’t getting rid of things, it’s trying to figure out which things to keep and where/how. Especially a challenge with a log house, no basement, no attic to speak of, no garage, no closets, etc.

I found another skein of the yarn I’d used for spring colors bath mats. My answer to that piece of clutter was what did last before bed yesterday: I added the yarn to the smaller mat. One less item floating around here and a  more useful mat (it was pretty small) — all good!  If I could just do something like about 2,000 times in a month, I’d be all set!

It’s nearly spring — I want my home to emerge from under all the STUFF!!!


A Ramble

Last week I took the oak desk chair and the last spinner to the antique booth. The spinner is priced at $5, cheap enough for anyone who wants a bookstore or relic or whatever to get it on a whim. The chair I think I priced at $25, but I’ve had a 25% off sale on general antiques for some time, so it will be sold for less than that, which is great! Hopefully when I get to the booth this week, both items will be out of my life.

Otherwise, I spent a fair amount of time figuring out how to package vintage trim to put it in a booth for sale yesterday. Then I cleaned around the bed, to the ground. Pitched stuff, put things away, etc. Lots of things were just “moved.” It’s obvious that in order to actually CLEAN this house I’m going to have to find a way to deal with the things which have no homes.

I did solve that problem for a perpetual rock with nowhere to live yesterday though. Our little vac, the semi-portable one, has never had a “home.” It does now.

There has never been places for any of the vacs to be stored. I have no broom closet. (What might be my broom closet got usurped for stuff long ago.) There are 4 vacs in this house, one upright downstairs, one upright upstairs, one shop vac in DH’s workshop, and the portable vac. There’s another in pieces around (in the attic?) which can wash/dry floors, but we’ll probably ditch that soon as we haven’t had all the pieces for some time. (We may have already?) The “flying saucer” vac (floated in a pocket of air) which I had (of course!) for the bookstore is long gone. But still. We have far too many, especially for appliances which are both portable and have no “homes.” They have places they are regularly “stashed,” but this is in plain sight and therefore, in my book, they aren’t “put away.”

Putting things away, unless their away spot is in a bookcase or they’re decorative, means away. I will not buy/make little cutesy doll/covers to go over the uprights. Or, I suppose, if I did, I’d make a robot or something, but I really don’t want cutesy dolls hiding tools. Another solution would suit me better!

My desk is a  mess again, with books & papers piled high. Need to go thru another batch o’ books and either price them/take them to the booth (did that last week) or donate them. In the middle here, I need to finish the data gather for the taxes.

So, life is pretty normal here, except that it’s warm instead of the usual wintry mix March gets. Happy Spring Forward day!




Doing a Major Purge

Partly because I’m sick o’ all the stuff, and I have an opportunity to maybe donate a large qty of books, without having to ship them. The shipping problem has kept me from getting books to dealers in IN and VT because I just can’t make myself spend the $10+ a box to give away books, when I can just put them in a box for free in many places.

So, there will be a lot less books in my life next Monday, one way or the other. Huzzzah!

Also, for a change, I’m selling things at the antique shop. In the past 2 months I’ve sold a bookcase, a pair of end tables, and a magazine/display rack. They were $20 each, which apparently is the  price point where not otherwise great furniture just sells. The bookcase was in fine shape, but it was tiny. The end tables were particle board. The magazine rack was painted plywood and had some issues. They’re gone.

What’s in the booth now is a large COVO tin with a lid and handles. It’s more than $20, so I have no idea when we’ll sell it. The image was swiped from ebay. Mine is in better shape!

covo rin


Also we have a Mermite tin. These are used by folks for motorcycle side cases. Again, mine is in much better condition and the pic came from ebay.

mermite container

But no furniture. I have the last spinner, a banker’s chair and then I’m not sure what else to get out of storage and to the booth. I have a few pieces to get out of storage and bring home as well. And our old dining room table needs to leave here and go to the antique store as well. I have a bookcase I’ll probably give away.

We are planning on painting redoing the hallway and bookcases,but not acquiring any new furniture this year otherwise, so things should get fairly empty — I hope! With luck, I’ll be able to paint the living room before June.

That’s what is going on with us. I’ve been under the weather the past few days with a gum infection. And I’ve been writing books off, which I find depressing, but necessary!

Hope everyone is enjoying our early spring!


Last Week & This

My wonderful husband and I had a reason to get into my biggest kitchen cabinet. I had put a part of a babydoll crib rail in there to hold up my asst. Pyrex and other baking dishes. It worked, for a while. Then it didn’t.  Because we had a reason to get into that cabinet, I asked him if he could fix it?

He did. Yay! Less chaos! Today I cleaned the front of the cabinets on that side of the island the best they’ve been cleaned in some time. The inside of the cabinet is still tidy, now its vertical face looks great too. Have yet to tackle the drawers (need stuff culled out of them) and the counter. A bit at a time.

Last week the sink overflowed in the bathroom. This will probably cause us to get a new shower fixture. (The two are related, I’ll explain if/when we get the new shower fixture.) The overflow caused me to clean out/cull (again, I’d done this last summer) the sink cabinet. Less stuff, more order!

I’m doing what I usually do when I re-start cleaning, that is, I’m cleaning closets & cabinets. Used to be that doing that would make me feel like I was cleaning AND I didn’t get panic attacks. Not sure what’s going on now, but it all needs to be cleaned, so I’m not questioning, just doing!

My cleaning tracker got all messed up. I dropped two days in January, another the beginning of February. By the time I got to this week, it was really messed up. I’ve spent the time tonight to straighten it out, but in the process, essentially, I’ve got garbage data. I have no idea when I actually did what, since 1/29. Sigh!

It’s fixed, but what a pain!

We think we found another solution for the floor as my floor wax only looks good right after it’s used and before someone walks on it (it’s sticky; grabs dirt off of shoes, ug). And we’d already planned to sand the floors this spring, so . . . .

Lots and lots and lots to do!