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I fortunately have not gotten the ebay bug. Most of what I buy online is music and DVD's. Then again, I prefer to see and feel whatever yarn I intend to use before I buy it. I may pick up a few skeins online but only after I figure out what I'm looking for. I did have an issue with different brands labeling yarn the same thing (navy blue) but the colors actually ending up being different. Also if I'm going to use different colors in the same project, I want to be able to put the skeins side by side to see if they work together.
 

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I have done eBay before but it kind of comes in spurts. It is easy to lose lots and lots of time browsing through things. And many of the deals are not much of deal. I have not bought anything there recently. I have decided to just go through regular stores for my thread.

Some of the offerings are just kind of odd. I could see buying of box of white skeins of thread. Some people want a bunch of white to try hand dyeing thread. But I am not sure why someone would want a box of blue skeins of thread. Not a box with lots of different shades of blue - a box with a whole bunch of the same shade of blue.

I really do not need a huge collection of thread at this point. My non-mini project planned will be shades of yellow on a navy blue background. So my tentative plan is that when I finish a non-mini project I might pick out some new thread for the next non-mini I have planned. My first non-mini project took a couple months and I was out of work for a month. So this next one could be even longer. I am thinking maybe two thread purchases a year.

I had thought of doing a cherry blossom theme one. But the cherry trees are only in bloom for a few weeks and it I think the project would take longer than that.

One of the things I am hoping to do in when I retirement is to do embroidery in season that reflects plants around me. Kind of a year in the life of public garden overview in embroidery thread.

Do other crafts have lists of things they want to do? Not projects you have actually planned. But craft projects that kind of fall in the "someday" category. Maybe things that you need more time/skill/money before you can do them. In may case many of these fall into the "when I retire" basket. I suppose some motivation writer would say, why put it off, do them now. Well there is the small matter of having very minimal time. And occasionally I feel so burned out from work and commuting I am not up to much.

It is like a bucket list, but for an introverted, adrenaline hating homebody who has zero interest in climbing any mountains.
 

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Discussion Starter · #703 ·
As you all know, I have bought lots and lots of stuff from eBay and Etsy, the vast majority of it for someday projects. I knew that one thing I wanted to do was to get into embroidery. My initial inspiration was some of the pieces by Judith Montano. The book below was my first introduction to it. But for that kind of embroidery I’ll need a wide ranging stash with all kinds of stuff in it. I have spent a lot of money on it, but it is really paying off now that I am finally stating to work toward that absurdly ambitious goal. Baby steps, but if I live long enough, I’ll get there, at least I hope I will. I definitely need variety for - lace, trims, charms, buttons, beads, ribbons, sequins, all kinds of threads, novelty yarns, and almost anything else that can be sewn on or attached to fabric. The hexagons are just my learning canvases.

I have also bought a lot of books, mostly cheap used copies from Better World Books, a few new from Amazon. All have some good ideas to contribute, and in the collection I have stumbled on a few that are five star plus books.

All of it together is more than I can ever use, but at the same time it has as much as I would ever need if I could never add another thing to it.

So yes, I definitely buy for someday projects. If someday comes I have the materials and if someday never comes, that’s ok too. Someone will enjoy it after my demise.

I find that posted lots from people clearing out stashes or from estate sales are good sources. I have picked up some great finds that way. If what is needed is instant variety rather than much of any one thing, it’s a good way to go.
 

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I've bought a lot of stuff for hobbies I thought I wanted to do someday. But when I did the first big purge of my sewing room, I got rid of a lot of that. It was a reality check for me. I took a hard look at my skills and interests and got rid of stuff like the stained glass stuff and other things. I realized I most likely would never actually take the time to use it. I haven't missed any of it, and don't even recall all the different things I got rid of. I focused on keeping areas where I already had a lot of skill and large investments in equipment and supplies, mainly sewing and beading. Both allow for fun projects using skills and knowledge I already have, while also providing opportunities to learn new methods and try new ideas. Sewing at the level I do also serves a practical purpose, as I can sew and have sewn to both save money and earn money either working for myself or someone else.

My lesser hobbies are set up so they have designated spaces, and I haven't allowed them to outgrow their spaces. I've talked about that before. The beads, leather, fur, and macrame are housed in a $10 former entertainment center that takes up only about 6 square feet of floor space. The knitting, crochet, and tatting items are in another $10 cabinet the same size, so in less than 12 sf I have enough supplies for 5 or 6 different hobbies, with enough variety in each catagory that I don't have to worry about buying more supplies for most any project. I also have a varied stash for knitting, crochet, and tatting because those crafts can often use the same supplies, which gives me many options for potential projects.

I live where it's difficult and inconvenient to buy craft supplies. I probably would not have amassed my stashes if it was easier to buy supplies here, except for beads which are so expensive I buy them when I see them cheap. I also took a page from D's book and have worked at building inventories ahead of retirement. Most of it has come dirt cheap from thrifts and garage sales, so I had to buy it when I saw it or pay far more later on.

I never know what I will need, which makes planning an inventory difficult. Therefore, it works for me to keep a wide variety of supplies. Over the years, it has saved me far more than it's cost. I really like being able to walk into my sewing room and know I can do whatever I want, usually without having to worry about having what I need.

I left out the cross stitch stuff because that's more Husby's hobby than mine, but it's the same with that, designated space and picking up cheap supplies.

So far this has worked for us. I'm constantly tweaking my organizing and storage methods to optimize those. I will also confess I'm making allowances for overflow in a couple of key areas, namely my 2 charity projects. I buy most of my DfG stuff new, but sometimes I run across things very cheap. Since I'm self-funded, it would be crazy not to buy low and save the money for shipping costs. For angel gowns, I never know when I will find gowns free or cheap, so have to take advantage when opportunities present themselves.

I actually kind of like the challenge of organizing stuff.
 

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I "inherited" or was given a lot of the fabric I had/have on hand, yarns, cross-stitch and so on. I have bought yarn and beads, mostly because I just thought it was pretty. For yarn I just have 3 1 lb solid color skeins and 5-6 smaller skeins of a pretty variegated to use some day. Beads fortunately take very little storage, so 2-3 shoe-box size boxes. Embroidery floss & Aida fabric in a couple of tote bags. The sewing fabric, zippers, tape, & thread takes 5-6 paper boxes and I'm good about only buying what is needed to finish a project at this point. I live close to both Michaels and JoAnn so buying as-needed is not a problem.
 

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Discussion Starter · #706 ·
This afternoon I finished the embellishment on the hexagon, except for one more thing to look for. I want to look through the metallic and AB black and gray beads to see if I have anything that might make a few bugs to put on the spider web. If not, it’s ok. Tonight I pulled out all the watercolors and got those ready to use. I have empty half and full watercolor pans, and I just bought some sticky magnet squares to put on their bottoms. I have a flat tin I can use for them, and with the magnets they don’t slide around all over the place. I put the colors straight from the tubes into the full pans. I will have to leave them out until they dry at least partially. I want to do the lace coloring soon.

These are supplies I bought for someday. I played around with watercolor a little when I was in school and would like to get into it again. Someday. I don’t know if I ever actually will, but it was great to have the paints on hand tonight for a project I didn’t anticipate using them for.
 

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I am not planning on making a retirement stash for myself. At least not on purpose. I will probably wind up with lots of supplies left to take into retirement. Especially with embroidery I think. I will probably use several balls of pearl cotton on any give piece of embroidery. But it will be quite a few pieces before I use up a ball. At any rate I do not plan on getting so much material I do not need to buy any supplies after retirement.

It may sound a little naive, but I honestly feel like we will be doing just as good financially in retirement as when we were working. First off we will have a combination of social security, pension and investments. So already we have a bit more than lots of people. Then we will be moving to a lower cost of living area.

It is tempting to think that half the income in a place with half the cost of living is a wash. But it is actually better because we will be in a lower tax bracket. And the half is just from social security and pension. I have not added in the investments because I am not sure how the stock market will do between now and retirement. But I am thinking it should probably bump it up to 70% of our income.

Operation through money at the credit cards like mad, is coming to end. The last bit should be paid off within a year. After that we will go to paying off any charges in full each month. That is a huge amount of extra money per month. We will probably put that in a money market account or something. The issue is that without that expense we can live on a lower income. Also we won't be deducting money from our paycheck for our retirement fund or for social security.
 

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Sigh. I keep saying that I'll put the w-b afgan on hold to work on other things so I have a sense of finishing a WIP but I end up continuing to work on it, despite it taking so long to complete. Still working on skein #7, although I should be able to finish it sometime this weekend. :lol:

On the other hand, I finally got my computer back. It's finally fixed! Yay! The part involved was defective so they had to ship it to another facility to do the repair. I was a bit worried it would come back tonight, especially since it looks like it's going to be wet all day today. Thunderstorms are forecast for this evening. So I'm glad I was able to get it when it wouldn't get wet. I missed my music!
 

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I am happy for you getting your computer back.

Sometimes I like to take breaks form big projects to do a quick and easy project. That way it feels like I am getting something done.

My little embroidered unicorn should be done soon. Then I start on my larger embroidery project.

I got my table light for tracing this week. I have not had a chance to use it yet. I think I will do a small drawing to test it out.
 

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It's early yet for us, Kathy, but we think we will be at or above our previous net income, so I hope it's not wishful thinking. If we missed something, we will have to adjust accordingly.

I did the first step in repairing the little vanity with the water damaged base. Simple, quick, free. I have to buy 4' of baseboard next week to cover up the damage. That won't cost much. Then I can paint it. I want to get it done so when the other vanity is installed, the plumber can do them both, plus a new kitchen faucet.

Husby found the tip-outs for the little vanity, so I can install those after painting. I got those free when we cleaned out Mom's house. They are an inch too long, so I will cut one down like I did with the big vanity.

I'm ready to say spring has arrived. I heard a loon this morning, and it looks like the ice will go out in a day or 2, at least on our end of the lake. Then we can put the dock and bikes in.
 

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Discussion Starter · #711 ·
It is full spring here, moving on quickly to summer. The swallows under the carport are sitting on eggs, by now parents are undoubtedly feeding nestlings. I’ve just had lunch on the screen porch, enjoying the beautiful day, the breeze and the birdsong. Last night all the frogs cranked up. I have some killdeer in the yard thoughtfully thinning out the bugs for me.

I’m not sure what I will do today. I think I will work on the lace and get all that put away before I haul out fabric to cut backings for several of the hexagons. I also have lots of stuff to put away I had out for working on the black hexagon.

Last night I felt like the local Joann. Little girl came over and asked if I had any yellow and purple ribbon. Yep, sure do. I think they were making a teacher appreciation gift.
 

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If LG keeps hanging around you, she will become quite a crafter.

I was all set to replace the failed zipper on the little gh, but then discovered the slots in the tab had gotten bent open too far, probably because the stitching had failed at the top of the zipper. It was hard to pull down to close, and Husby is good at yanking on zippers instead of seeing what the problem is. Luckily I was able to fix the zipper pull and get it back on the zipper, then sew the top of the zipper so it stays in place now and closes easily. Hope it holds up. The plants should be happier now that their little room is warm and humid again.
 

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I think you can use lots of things for the dolls hair..thread, ribbons, yarn. think emb floss would tangle fast. I agree about stashes i keep them in a certain amount of area. somethings I got into years ago like beads..all in a chest of drawers but no where do it without cats or kids into it. I buy some things off ebay but only craft stuff was traders for guides. and use to sell vintage crochet magazines/booklets and 3d stickers for cards etc. still have a bunch of the mags. we all have our stashes in this house. usually I get craft kits at thrift stores or church sales. have a set that are dolls but animals w clothes etc complete kits. figure do it w kids one day to teach how do lay out a pattern etc.

plan to finish the crochet along today when doing online schooling for scouts. most of it is just listening.
 

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For the most part, my largest stash is my yarn for crocheting. The problem with that is I keep picking up yarn for new projects I make for people. That and the sheep and fiber festival I go to every year. I think I need to work on some lapgans in order to move the stash out. I know I can donate the lapgans to either the church, hospital or local rehab as needed. I'd donate them to the local senior center but that's only open during work hours Monday-Friday.

The only other things I guess could be called a stash are my books, CD's, and DVD's. The books are the biggest issue. I've picked up books for 'research', only to have them sit on the shelves as my tastes have changed. That and I can go online to research and take notes.
 

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I'm doing the happy dance! We went out to start the raised garden in front of the cabin, and once Husby was into that I dug out the window I need to install in the greenhouse. Took some detailed measurements. Finally figured out how to remove the glass panels from the main frame, and then the solution to removing the glass from its frames became obvious. That's been the main hang up to doing this mod. It's a weird window and it took be a while to figure out how everything works on it. The aluminum framing on the gh is so flimsy and the window glass is so heavy, that combo is not workable. But now I can put plexiglass in the window and it will weigh very little. I have the plex on hand, so no additional cost there. I can't recall where this window came from. I either salvaged it or bought cheap though, because I would not have bought it new. I'm so lucky to have it. It's obvious it has never been used so it's in perfect shape, and it's the exact size I need for the gh, just by chance. Once I swap out the glass to lighten it up, it will be like it was made just for my gh. So happy!

I also figured out 1x2s would work nicely for the partial framing on the sides of the window. As luck would have it, I salvaged quite a few board feet of PT 1x2s that are already painted. Perfect. And free.

I can't wait to get started on this project. It's a high priority because I want to grow some plants in the gh all summer. The roof windows don't move hot air out of there very well, even with the door open. Adding the window will allow the use of a fan to pull air out of the gh and should make a huge difference.

The bad news is I will have to replace 3 of the original gh panels where the window will be installed. One is broken and needs replacing regardless. The other 2 would last another year or 3 but once the window is in, it would be too hard to replace them later. But I can use those to replace some others that are in worse condition, so it's all good. We're going to buy 5 panels to replace an assortment of smaller panels on the gh, so there goes the first $100 on that project. We knew last year we would have to start replacing damaged panels this year, so this isn't entirely unexpected. The plan is to replace all the original stuff over several years because it's going to be so expensive, and this way we can spread out the cost. The new stuff will be a big upgrade over what the gh came with and should last a lot longer.

We have so much to do on our garden project and it's going to take years, but most of it is fun to do.

I fear our garage ceiling may not get done this year. :sigh:
 

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Binding on the last side of the yellow flower quilt is attached, turned and pinned. Another 1-2 hours hand sewing and it will be done. Glad I made myself do this project instead of just letting that quilt top gather dust for more years. I have white sheets if I want to make the bed up w/ this quilt. Debating trimming some white pillowcases w/ same yellow fabric used for the quilt binding.
 

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Discussion Starter · #718 ·
The next hexagon in the stack is neutral beige, mostly, and I don’t much like how it turned out. It’s also the one I really messed up sewing the seams and didn’t notice until it was all done. There were a couple of places where the fabrics met, mostly, but weren’t stitched. With 1/4” seams I still can’t figure out how that happened. Last night I hand stitched those bits to secure them, but all in all, this is my least favorite of all the hexagons I made. I’ll do it more like a crazy quilt with all the seams covered so the sewing idiocy won’t show. I’m going do it all in red. When it’s out of the way, I get to pretty colors.

I messed with the lace a bit last night. I have some crayon-like fabric dye sticks. For what I want to use them for I didn’t like them. I think the little girl is going to inherit them. She can make tees or tote bags. They will be fine for that. I also have regular fabric markers, two sets which a consequence of not keeping track of the stash. I wasn’t very happy when I discovered that a few weeks ago. They were both ok. I used them on the synthetic lace. I worked with dry Lace but I also want to see the effect if the lace is wet. I didn’t get to the watercolors. Maybe today.

The swallows seem very busy coming and going from the nest. I don’t think she’s been sitting long enough to have hatched the eggs, but she may have started before I noticed. I don’t think so though. On the other hand it is definitely time to start seeing baby birds on the lawns. There are cardinals, mockingbirds, bluebirds, chipping sparrows, and killdeer nesting around here for sure. Probably others that are more reclusive. The usual southern roll call. We didn’t put out hummingbird feeders, so they have set up shop somewhere else this year.
 

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Our fall is shaping up. There is, apparently, a joint rally in Missouri for two different upper midwest regions of the Aliner Owners Club, of which we are newly minted members. As luck would have it, we will be a mere 165 miles away meeting some friends in Illinois, until two days before the rally starts. I think we will have to go. We don't know anyone in the AOC, and it would be nice to meet a few people at a rally. I just found this rally info so we have yet to discuss it and don't know if it's all booked up already, but it's intriguing. It seems like a good opportunity since it's so nearby and basically on our way home anyway.

I'm procrastinating about cutting the plex for the gh window. It's not the cutting, it's the dragging out of all the stuff to do the cutting, and then putting it all away again. OTOH, once I get the new panels for the gh on Tuesday, I'll wish the window was done.

First, discussion of the rally, then lunch, then maybe change out the window glass.
 

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I didn't get the window mod done, but we did get our winter-damaged mailbox repaired so our mailman can quit cursing us.

I cut up a couple milk cartons into strips to use for planter labels. I hope Sharpie ink will stil to them. My 6 tomato seedlings are big enough to be potted now, so I plan to do that tomorrow. Next year I will plant them in something bigger to begin with.

The little greenhouse is working out so fantastic now that it's lighted. I plan to start a lot more of our own plants next year. It should save us a lot.
 
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