Hello my dear sparklers!
Yes, I'm still here! These days just seem to creep by. It's not that I am enourmously busy it's just that I am in such a corona slump.
I will FINALLY be reopening the consignment gallery Wed. 9/23. I've been closed since mid March when all non-essential businesses here in SW FL were ordered to close down. I did try to reopen in mid June but found that people were just coming out to get out of their house. There were no serious buyers whatsoever. After a few unpleasant encounters asking customers to wear a mask...while offering one if they did not have one I reclosed the gallery. It's ridicioulous that people argue with you over their civil liberties...yada, yada, yada.
I cannot afford to get sick being completely on my own right now. So I reclosed the gallery.
I have had some success putting my inventory on-line and opening up the gallery to people who are highly interested in certain items. Again, while I have someone coming by appointment I leave the gallery open and again...people are mostly just browsers.
But...I must reopen and hope for the best. I'm hoping our snowbirds return but that is all up in the air also. I know our Canadian customers probably will not return to FL this year. If they do they won't be allowed back in Canada due to the corona virus. It's hard to comprehend that America has been banned from 39..THIRTY NINE...certain countries...but this is the world we now live in. Obviously this is due to the fact that they don't want our germy selves in their land due to the roaring numbers of the corona virus.
I was VERY lucky to recieve some PPP funds that I groveled for...filling up to FIVE times to get them all the docs they needed. Those funds have allowed me to pay my exhorbitant rent but they won't last forever so I have to get back to chippin' rock.
Being a retail biz owner is not for sissies my friends.
I have also faced some big expenses maintaining this big ole' house. The air conditioner that I have nursed along for years finally gave up the vapors and died. I had to lay out a BUNCH of my precious savings to replace it. As most of you know I live very far south in SW FL. We experience hotter temps and soaring humidity almost every single day. I'd go as far to say that this area would be uninhabitable for humans with no air conditioning.
I also had to almost completely have our pergola rebuilt. It was originally built with pressure treated lumber but it appears even that kind of wood can't survive the heat and rain of tropical FL. Friends told me to just tear it down but it is on the North West corner of the house and provides much welcome shade to that hotspot in the house. I also nursed the climbing jasmine for YEARS to provide a beautiful coverage over the top and sides. It is a source of great perserverance and pride for me...so it was repaired and remains...YAY!
I have been staying sane by connecting with some of my favorite grief group friends. Every so often we will get together and play Dominos or have a little get together. I am a people person and if I go for days and days locked down in my home with no one to talk to but my little Mac cat I fall into the depths of sadness. When you are grieving during a pandemic you feel exceptionally alone. I also think about how happy Don and I would be to have the lockdown together. We always loved each other's company and this would have been a true vacation for us to be together.
As I learn of other people's marriages when they discuss them in the grief group I realize how extremely blessed I was to have the long compatible marriage I had with this sweet man.
This wonderful man was my very BEST friend and I enjoyed being with him more than any one else on this earth. We had a very good marriage for 42 years. There wasn't much we disagreed upon other than the sabatage and interference his mother caused. He could never stand up to her and it caused a lot of sadness to me. I almost felt like she was the 'other woman' throughout our marriage. My fondest wish was for our Josh to marry so I could be a great MIL and support my DIL as if she were my own. It wouldn't have mattered to me if she had a few flaws here and there...I would give my son the support and respect to his wife that she deserved...after all if HE picked her..I'd respect that he made a good choice. I never had that from Don's mom and sister...in fact I found out many years later that both of them tried to talk him out of marrying me. It was a bad start with those two jealous women right from the get go.
BUT...after Don's passing I no longer have to endure any of their toxic sabatage and their wrangling to pull Don over to their side. It's h*ll losing Don...but losing those two and their constant whining and guilt inducing plots has been very freeing to me. I'm grateful to be away from them!
I know it's not just a MIL thing because my first MIL I adored...but then she was kind and supportive to me so there you go!
I have busy sewing my masks and I get the cutest material so making the masks always stays new and fun.
I have started making child size masks since our children need them for going back to school.
I also have been busy catching up on chalk paint projects to get some stored furniture out of my garage and back over to the consignment gallery to sell.
I have hopes of making the consignment gallery more of an artisian hub once we can start having group events again. I just hope I can hold on long enough to see this happen.
I've been there almost eleven years and I enjoy the social interaction the gallery allows me to have with people. Most of my customers have become friends..just a few stinkers in the entire timeframe.
Lastly I'm SO proud of myself for finally getting my act together in bringing back my health by losing -23 lbs. since 8/1/20. I HAD to do something. I gained 15 lbs during lockdown just eating and drinking anything and EVERY thing I wanted. It was serious self sabatoge. I was drinking almost a bottle of wine nightly. Two glasses of wine for sure and three glasses on nights I felt down in tthe dumps. I was eating sweets, eating past 7 p.m. it was out of control. I just didn't care...I was so dreary I turned to food as a comfort. BAD choice for comfort..it only compounded my problems.
Finally I gave myself a pep talk and realized I was slowly killing myself. I knew I was headed for diabetes. I had no energy whatsoever and I was disquested by my inability to pick myself up and put one foot in front of the other. I also knew I would not be able to continue doing the very physical work necessary to move heavy furniture around in the gallery creating the little vignetts I am so fond of creating on the floor to showcase the furniture coming in.
I eat one time a day within a 1 hr. timeframe. I fast the remaining 23 hours of the day. Sometimes I have to tweak this a little bit if I'm going out with friends but for the most part I keep my carbs very low...under 20 g. and I mostly have a massive salad full of low carb veggies and lettuce and about 8 oz. of protein.
Most people think this is impossible...but I'm here to tell you once you get the sugar crap out of your life and all of the processed junk out of your diet you are NOT hungry.
Some people have a bigger eating windown vs. the fasting window but I had to go extreme and it has paid off in aces!
I have about another 40-50 pounds to lose to get down to a weight that is healthy for my small frame. I'll just keep plugging along. I can seriously tell you being at a reasonable weight is worth it. And now that I no longer crave the health killing foods that are shoved in our face 24/7 I'll acheive my goal.
I hope you are all well and doing fine! Please stay safe and wear your da*n masks! Protect YOU and your loved ones.