Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Are you ready for the Sparkle Girlz ?

Today was a lot like yesterday, just for different reasons. Got up early to get Emmy-car over to Mal-Wart for two new tires. The ones she has now are dangerous, and tomorrow, I gotta drive m’self over to the CapitolCity VA for my medical appointments – out on the highway, and Beloved’s busy at work. Yeah, it could have waited ‘til later today, especially since it was raining, but early in, early out, and Beloved Hubby was up at that hour, too. Dearest Son wanted to go with me, of course, so he was up and dressed, and we were on the way right at 7am. Did some banking for Beloved, and the only car at the Auto Center ahead of us was just getting an oil change.

So we had breakfast at the McD within, and wandered around. Dearest is very reluctant to spend his yard sale fundage – and FIL actually paid him for something FIL got out of the yard sale, he deserves credit for that -  but we looked at everything. Their MH section is still half-empty, with lots of the newer stuff, like the Recharge Station (pricey !) and some of the old, like the Die-Ner and Hauntlywood. No Invisi-Billy, but I’m only halfway looking for him. If I find him for twenny bucks, great, if not, oh, well.

Their knockoff DP&M dolls don’t even try to look like cover-band Princesses, they just wear fairy tutus or long regal gowns. Probably not a bad deal for the same ten bucks as the Family Dollar Wannabees, but the colors of their clothes are such lurid shades of pink, purple, and burgundy, I’m amazed the dolls aren’t stained up to their hairlines. 

I bought three Barbie-sized ‘Sparkle Girlz’ outfits – would have bought more not too long ago, and did have to keep m’self from buying twice that today, but I really wasn’t as into it as I normally would have been. We’re looking at rentals again, so it’s not the time for reckless spending, even if it is just a few bucks. But I like what I got. The middle outfit is a sporty shirt with glittery blue bubbles, paired with pink Capri pants. It reminded me of Lagoona, so I got it for her. The graphic face shirt and pants was just too awesome to not buy – I’d seen it before and wanted it, it was the only one in the display box – and the black dress on your right, well, I really want to see that on Elsa. There, I said it. Since Diz Store billed me today, I think she shipped !

But as for true luxe splurging,  you can’t beat candy. Found two Cadbury ‘Scream Eggs’ for 33c and bought them both. I am so gonna feast on one tonight ! Most of the leftover Halloween stuff was in carts – the gondolas were already being restocked with Christmas candy and gift sets - but not yet marked down. Weird. The eggs were the only candy visible, the rest was decorations and costumes.

More laundry – maybe two more runs before I’m done, depends on how much is piled up in the living room and Study (sigh) – and I’m currently putting off dishes. I hate dishwashing…

Monday, November 3, 2014

It's a nice idea, but if it's useless in the real world...

It was one of those ‘hit the ground running’ days – I was in the shower at 6am. We had the intake and paperwork meeting for potential help (SSVF)  with a new place. Meeting started 20 minutes late – and we were nearly a half hour early. Did two hours’ worth of filling out forms, and we probably won’t use it. We’re already having trouble finding someone who’ll rent to us, adding inspections and paperwork and ‘is it OK if this agency pays you for a couple months ?’ is probably not going to increase our popularity. I don’t even think we can use their help for utility deposits without inspections with the owner / agent present, so unless they have a Trusted Circle of Benign Landlords ™, I really don’t think it’s something we can use. Plus, she had to tell us that occasionally, their funds run out, so we'd best have our own funds built up, just in case...
And I’m probably now on United Way’s mailing list for life.

Plus, as I’m preparing for bed, I’m reminded that our caseworker said she’d call today once we were approved, and it’d happen later today… I don’t hold much hope for her to call between now and midnight. Even knowing all I wrote in the first paragraph, I still busted butt over to the local Social Security offices, towing Dearest Son along, as soon as we were home. Waited around with screaming kids and swag-bragging dudes applying for disability with more jewelry than Mr. T for two hours to turn in a form for a new SocSec card. Two hour wait for less than two minutes’ face time. But you can’t do it online, nope. Scanned and sent a copy of the ‘She requested a new card’ letter SocSec gave me to caseworker, no reply there, either. (sigh) I even checked ‘spam’ and ‘trash’, nothing.

No rest for the wicked ! After a bolted late lunch, I ran more clothes to the Laundromat, and it’s all washed, dried, and put away for today. I’m nearly half caught up with it all. Two, maybe three more runs after today, and I should have it. I am so mightily sick of socks… I’d prefer to do one huge laundry day rather than all these little runs, but I can’t lift it all at once, and I’m worn and weary after today. It just piles up so fast ! 

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Thanks, ya'll, for the kind wishes and sweet support ! (((Hugs!)))

It's a Family Dollar Princess Party ! Grab your goblets and slippers, and let's go ! 

What a pretty day it was here ! 
Bright and sunny, but still windy and cold. Long as you didn’t go outside, it was gorgeous. Glad I didn’t have to finish the yard sale today. Much as I grouse about Daylight Savings Scheme, the ‘extra’ hour of sleep always feels so good…  

Oh, remember that huge bag of fabric I got for 25¢ at the Thrift, that had some great fabric, just far too much of some of it for me to ever use ? I cut some for me, then put the rest in the yard sale – all four huge pieces sold for 25¢ each, to three different buyers. Score !

Had to go out early – the cats were out of chow (evidently FIL used the last of it, as the bag was missing, but he didn’t say anything) and were getting pushy and loudly vocal. If we didn’t feed ‘em soon, it might have escalated to violence. As it was, we had all the cats’ full attention soon as the bag hit the floor. Had to give them separate makeshift bowls to avoid fights.

Helped one of our buyers from yesterday with a pick-up, then the day was ours to do with as we pleased. Too bad Beloved Hubby volunteered to work. Dearest Son and I hit Family Dollar again, as I wanted a better look at the ‘Princess’ dolls. Surprisingly, they each have different face paint – and different colored shoes. I figured they all wore the same white shoes Elsa had, and while they are the same style shoes, they were all different colors, to match their dresses. If one of them had black shoes, I’d have probably bought her, but for pastels, heck, these shoes weren’t any better or worse than my own, and I can make exact matches for their clothes, given enough fabric. I admit, I thought about that purple gown – Rapunzel, I think, you couldn’t see how long her hair was – and the mermaid fin, but it was so poorly made, I just couldn’t make m’self spend money for it. Plus, I got enough official Dizney gowns, and there’s other uses for ten bucks.

Like slippers ! They had a buy-one-get-one-half-off sale going, so I got a two-pack of the ballerina-type slippers I like (green and black, classic), and a pair of slip-ons for Beloved. Dearest isn’t much for slippers, preferring to wear out socks instead. And snacks, I got Dearest his favorite Funyuns and me a dollar bag of real Cheez Doodles, plus a small popcorn tin. Beloved laughs at my fondness for popcorn tins, but when I see one I like, it’s mine. Plus, popcorn ! This new one has a pretty Christmas tree scene through a window with a pair of deer. I love Christmas – until December rolls around.

I’d also bought a splurge for lunch, Underwood Chicken Spread, earlier. So delicious on wheat bread from Dollar Tree ! No matter how much I love that stuff, it’s best when I only have it as a rare treat. I felt I earned it after four loads of laundry. My Monster High birthday bedspread is clean and ready to snuggle under tonight. It was just too hot to have it anywhere near our bed in summer, but it’ll be awesome tonight ! 

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Yard Sale !

Today I hit the Quadfecta / Superfecta of Fall Clichés. In addition to Pumpkin Spice cappuccino, a McRib, and candy corn, I stepped on crunchy leaves and feasted on a pumpkin muffin this morning. So even if ya wanna include the muffin in with the cappuccino, I still tagged most of the clichés. Go, me !

Dearest Son’s jack-o-lantern was a big hit. About half our trick-or-treaters posed with it for Mom and Dad’s phone photos. Big turnout this year – at least twelve !

It was so cold, even at 8am, Beloved Hubby urged me to put off the yard sale ‘til tomorrow. Um, no. I wanted all this messy clutter gone, I wanted this dready anticipation over, and I wanted it all to be over and done with. So, off we went. It was so cold, I actually wore socks and sneakers instead of my usual exercise sandals or flats, and I ended up putting on gloves, too. Brrrr !

Slow going for the most part. I really should have done this last week ! But eventually, around 2pm, it was apparent that I needed to test and eat again (was getting shaky), and the crowds, such as they weren’t, were over. Still, we made a nice chunk of change, as did the ILs, and I’d sold everything I wanted to sell. Dearest Son made $32. after paying me back for his earlier eBay bid, so he was happy. We got rid of four boxes and one huge toybox of his selected stuff, so I was, too ! I pushed the remainders, two good-sized boxes worth of miscellany, to the curb and called it a success.

Not sure if the ILs are gonna continue tomorrow, they still have some furniture and stuff, but I’m satisfied and done. The DP&M girls sold, the MH stuff sold (except for the Roadster, but I’m kinda glad I get to keep that), the furniture sold, and the oven finally sold. Even one of the doors sold. FIL said he’d pay me back half of the signs – he ate most of the leftover Halloween candy, spent most of the sale inside (I had to call for him when he had buyers), and I think he took a few miniscule payments for our stuff. I don’t even care anymore, but it does reinforce what I think about him.

The MH dolls went to a great buyer. She was about my age, possibly a bit younger, and her father loved them, as did she. He’d bought her nearly all of them, all still in the boxes. With the lot I sold her, she got most of the main characters (several of some) to play with, in new clothes she was impressed with, and she was over the moon. DP&M Anna earned me a compliment – the buyer said she knew all about them, how much they cost, all that. I mentioned that Anna’s head was still fastened to the box liner, all I’d done was change her outfit. My knowledgeable buyer was astounded – she thought that was Anna’s original costume ! Nope, that was the heart blouse and purple skirt, with the black boots from TRU’s Journey Girl shoe pack. But it was nice to know she thought my sewing was up to issue-wear grade !

Beloved, who’d had to go to work after lugging and shoving most of that stuff outside and setting up the signs, came home just as we were packing it in. With McRibs ! I was famished and ate every crumb. Then fell asleep for two hours. He was lavish in his praise, as he’d honestly not thought we’d do that well. I’m kind of surprised, too, but very happy with m’self.

So, when I was idly poking around and saw they were available again, I ordered my Elsa doll. I waffled between the Skating set and the original Elsa, but since I really just wanted Elsa, and the original Disney Store one at that, she’s who I ordered. Yaaay ! I will soon have the precise Elsa I’ve always wanted. And I didn’t pay eighty bucks for her off eBay ! You’ll laugh, but the main reason I was going to go for the Skating set was so that Elsa wouldn’t be lonely – but I figured she and Racquelle would get along just fine. I was also eyeing the big $80. set… but that just seemed ridiculous. It’d be nice to have, though… Isn’t it great that all those dolls are back in stock ?

It’s been a great day. Too bad the central heater’s not working. Well, maybe that’ll light a fire under our butts to get outta here !

Friday, October 31, 2014

My Elsa fandom takes me to weird places...

Postponed the yard sale ‘til tomorrow. First off, it was 40 degrees at 7am, secondly, most of the larger stuff we needed to sell, Beloved Hubby has either given away or wants to wait to sell later, when we know what place we’re moving to. That makes our yard sale 90% toys and a few books, so I doubt we’ll make much anyway. Third, my ILs were still asleep at 11am, so it’s not like I was cheating them out of the opportunity.

And after this upsy-downsy week, when I finally got a few bucks in my hot little hands, I went nutz. Treated Dearest Son to Chinese takeout for lunch, and hit the Family Dollar in the strip. Saw the uniquely gowned ‘princess’ Midnight Magic dolls and thought about snagging one, but I really don’t wanna start with MH prom dresses right now. Saw the mini MMs – so cute ! – and poked at the Creepateria MHs in stock. Ended up buying socks for my guys (I try to buy a pack every month), a tire gauge for Emmy-car, and yes, I bought a doll. You know, when the cheep knockoff looks better and yes, prettier, than the $50. MSRP licensed one, there’s a real problem. This lovely pseudo- Disney Princess & Me Elsa is also from Family Dollar, and yes, she was only ten bucks. 

They’d evidently just reset the toy gondolas for the upcoming holidays, as she was in one of two full display boxes. There were two ‘Cinderella’ dolls, one ‘Mermaid’, one ‘Sleeping Beauty’, two of a yellow-gowned ‘Beauty’, one ‘Frog Princess’, and this ‘Snow Queen’.  Not that they’re really given names, all the boxes are identical, and merely read ‘Princess’. I was idly considering the ‘Frog Princess’ for her dress (I think they all have the same face) when I saw this cutie behind her. I couldn’t resist. At ten bucks, she was certainly in my budget, and even if her clothes and shoes didn’t fit the licensed DP&M  girls, I rather liked her. Heckuva lot better than the ‘real’ one, truth be told. The licensed one still makes me shiver, and not because of the ‘ice’ themes.

This Elsa is a bit smaller than her inspirations, as well as noticeably lighter, but she’s not weak, too thin blow-mold, either. She may be hollow, but she’s more stable and thicker than yer average Dollar Tree Barbie clone. Her clothes and shoes fit Aurora, even if it’s a bit of a stretch. Skirts are maybe a half-inch shy of the ankles, but even in photos, it’s hard to tell. She’s  close enough to fit the clothes I’ve made for the others just fine. The licensed Elsa dress is better put together, but this one is charming in its own way, too. Instead of the ‘train’ overlay starting under her arms and going to the back, this one is attached at the bust, from just past center front to the side seams, a much more evocative use of delicate, more expensive fabric. Fabric is a bit stretchy, which is probably most of why it fits the larger DP&M girls.

Her joints are nearly the same, she just lacks the tilting torso (admirably reviewed and photographed by The Toybox Philosopher) and fully rolling head joint – Elsa’s strictly a side-to-side kinda girl. And she has the same regrettably wide seated stance of her ‘sisters’. Her feet are a bit smaller, too, but she fills up the shoes I made – and some of the ones I’ve made fit Elsa better than they fit anyone else.

Her hairstyle is simple, but somehow captures most of movie-Elsa’s look. A bit of feathery bang on one side, and a braid down the back, but that and the dress is about all you need to see to know who’s being copied. As with most non-licensed dolls, she’s sparsely rooted, but from what I’ve seen, some of the DP&Ms are, too.

It’s her face that really makes the difference. Whoever did the sculpt made a pleasant, happy face that pulls a smile from me each time I see it. And her makeup and eye colors are spot-on for movie-Elsa – someone did his/her homework. I find it odd that her ears are pierced, but she came with no jewelry at all. Odd that a line of dolls merely called Princess don’t have any crowns or tiaras at all. Ah, well – I’ve got lots of materials to make my own, Midwood Brands, LLC. is doing me a favor by inspiring me to fill a blank canvas.

I think I knew, before I even had her out of the store, I’d be keeping this pretty Elsa. I think you knew that halfway through this entry ! Now, the big question is… do I go back for any of the others later ? 

Thursday, October 30, 2014

The midnight hour is close at hand...

Boo !
Dearest Son's pumpkin, now jack o'lantern.
Awesome, isn't it ? 
Oookay. Yesterday Beloved Hubby was all gung-ho about finding a new place, so much that he called in to work and took the day off, today he’s  lot less interested. He says we can stay here a bit longer, save up more money, but in my experience, the longer we stay, the more broke we get. Sure, FIL is now taking the utility bills, instead of leaving them for us, but the big question is whether or not he’ll actually pay them, or just hand them to us when they’re back in cutoff notice.

Hit the third part of my Fall Cliché Quadfecta (or Superfecta, depending on if you wanna use vernacular or horse wagering lingo) – got Pumpkin Spice cappuccino this morning. Add that to the candy corn (earlier this month) and a McRib (last week), I’ve nearly hit all four buttons.

For some odd reason, my blood sugar is now darn low. My last three tests have been in the 90s, when just last week, I was happy when it was under 150. I haven’t done anything differently recently, so I’m not sure what’s up. I’ve actually gained two pounds, darn it.

It’s all Fall’s fault ! That’s my excuse and I’m sticking to it. 

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Things are moving - at the speed of glaciers.

We looked at two potential places today, and Beloved Hubby gave our potential move-in date as the first of December. That’s OK. Another month won’t hurt us, and will give us some time to save up for the numerous utility deposits and other things we’ll need. FIL has picked up the other utility bills for this place – we paid the $200. electric bill yesterday, so it wouldn’t be cut off Friday – but it’s up to him if he actually pays them.

We both preferred the same place (it helped that the rent was $100. more for the other), so he’s going to talk to the realtor tomorrow. We’re still going ahead with the yard sale Friday. Kind of have to, there’s too much stuff in the living room, it’s gotta go somewhere. Plus it’s growing colder – wait any longer, no one will want to leave their nice cozy warrens early in the morning in search of discount sport.

Finally got a call from my VA caseworker – I have an appointment Monday, in Capitol City. Have to bring lots of paperwork. Busy days.