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Tuesday, May 8, 2018

alive and kicking

I'm here. I'm still alive!

So in case you missed my last post I wrote around Easter, my family was evicted from our home (read the story here) and we moved in with my mom. We have plenty of space here- more than we had before so it's actually working out just fine.

So here's some goooood news. 

My husband was hired by a company months ago but they weren't able to put him on the schedule until recently. The company sends out guys to retrofit public outdoor lighting with LEDs all over the country. He left for Iowa a couple days ago and then he'll be headed to Missouri, then Pennsylvania. He'll be gone for five weeks. Sigh.

BUT the job pays double what he was making at his previous job so YAY!


Next round of good news. We have a home to move into!!!
The pastor of a little home church I used to go to and his wife moved to New York so they've been renting out their old house to friends in Texarkana (where we lived before we were evicted). I posted on Facebook that we were looking for a house to rent and they got in touch with me.
The house has suffered some terrible water damage from a burst water pipe this winter but the water company and their insurance should cover that. So with that being said, unlike the other house we were trying to fix up to move in to WE don't have to fix this one up!
I hear tale there's talks of selling the house and I'm all up for buying it! The house is massive and affordable and I hope it works out! We won't be able to move in probably for a couple months but I'm sure it'll be worth the wait!!!


So with all that being said. Me and the husband's 8th wedding anniversary is today. Since he'd be out of town for it, we did out celebrating Saturday. We went to our town's annual wine fest and then dined out at a swanky Italian restaurant downtown (Thank God for tax returns). I know our outing doesn't sound very fancy, but we did it all... without kids!
Qué romántico!


So here's a few shots I took from the festival. 


Local artist Joel Wright.


The lady above is Chris Thomas and her son. Chris was one of the first vendors we ever had at the renaissance faire and I've been following her work and running into her at other festivals for years now.


Here's some of her goodies above. I bought this great fish necklace from her but I broke it already!! BOO!
I went to show it to my mom that night and I dropped it on the tile floor. It's in 3 pieces, it should be an easy fix but darn it. Whyyyyyy????!?!


I also got this hand-painted clown tile brooch from another local artist Polly Cook. Can't you tell my husband took this photo? Was the camera out of focus or am I just a naturally blurry person?... like Big Foot.



Here's a closer pic of it from Instagram.

Some of Polly's work...


And Polly with her work.


And me with my complimentary "wine garden" swag.

Poor woman's outfit: Dress, Ross Dress for Less $8.99 and sunglasses $3.99? Jacket thingy, gift from mom.

So while I'm here at my ma's, I'm still blogging over at Quirky Bohemian Mama, still keeping up with my "mini Bohemian Bazaar" at the flea market in Texarkana and still doing my social media management thing and still homeschooling... poorly.

We will be putting River back in school for Kindergarten in the fall and I'll do Cedar's preschool from home. Even though my husband will be making significantly more money, I will continue to do all that I can to bring in even more money.

I don't ever want to be poor again!


Thursday, April 5, 2018

the good, the bad and the grumpy


Ok, so here are some Easter pics and a tragic tale.
Ok, it's not tragic... but it is bittersweet I guess you could say.

Here's the story:
My husband and I were evicted from our home last Friday.
Yup. You read right.

I'm sure you guys remembered that I was griping about being broke and my husband having job issues a lot a while back. Well, we got behind on rent.
It's happened before. We get caught up and move on about our lives.

Well, this time - the owner of the mobile home park we were living in decided she didn't want to hang with us anymore.
Fine. I get it. But the way they went about it was pretty ugly.


After they lead us into believing that they would wait for our tax return check to come in so we could get caught up they kicked us out. 
The constable came and gave us 24 hours to get out.

Time began to tick down. I only had a handful of diaper boxes we were saving for a future move and no clue where or how to get started to pack up or where we were going to go.
My mom told me to "come home". 
Uuugghhhh.
No adult wants to hear that!
Being an adult hearing my mother say "come home" was like being handed the Official Certificate of Failure to Adult.

We didn't have much of a choice there but we're grateful we had a place to go.


My husband rented a second storage space and an army of church members cancelled bible study and came help us. They brought pizza, water, trailers, huge moving boxes - the works!

I was so grateful but overwhelmed as everything was happening so fast. My head was spinning. There were so many people there asking how they could help I wanted to cry with gratitude and frustration.

It was an awesome experience having so much help but it was incredibly chaotic. Especially since all I wanted to do was hop in my car, chain smoke all the way to a hotel in Vegas and drink myself into a stupor while I listed to dramatic opera music. 


Sunday, we went to our church's Easter festivities. Being there, trying to pretend like I wasn't stressed to the max and emotionally fatigued was exhausting. Getting to wear my African print maxi and Afghani glass bead necklace together made me feel a little better... 

I got Cedar a gorgeous lavender and silver brocade 60s-style shift dress for Easter but it got misplaced in the move. Luckily Cedar's granny rush delivered a dress she made for her to wear for Easter and we got it just in time.

Anyway. I am super grateful we had a place to go, but good heavens I'm ready to get out of here!

My patience is paper thin and my nerves are absolutely frayed. The change is making my kids act horrible! (And me too!)
I.
Need.
A.
Vacation.
And a beer and a grilled cheese sandwich.


Right now, we're house hunting. My husband is driving over 50 miles total to and from work so it would be great if we could get back to our town as soon as possible.
Please forgive me if I don't get to visit your blogs this week. I hope you understand, it's a little crazy around here.
Phew! Pray for me, ya'll.

Sunday, March 18, 2018

the yellow flowers



Me and the fam went to the 50th annual Jonquil Festival at the Historical Washington State Park in Arkansas. It's about an hour away and we try to go every year because the weather is usually still pretty decent, the park is lovely, the vendors are very diverse and have great prices and of course greasy fried stuff on a stick.

As it was St Patrick's Day I put on my girdle and squeezed into the only green dress I own: a too-tight dress that I only wear around the house in the summer.

Sorry if some of the pics are a little lackluster. I'm not much in the mood to edit all of these.
Aunt Irma came for a visit a little early and she's not being a very nice guest...
In other words. I feel like POO.

Since the historical park has been "frozen in time" in the Civil War era, it's not uncommon to see young maidens in 19th century attire waiting for their "bloomen onions" to finish cooking. 
She's most likely a tour guide. Sadly, people don't wear costumes for this event. I kind of wish they did. I had to chunk my hoop underskirt after I broke a hoop beyond repair at Mardi Gras last year and I haven't have much a reason to buy a new one.


Yes. We eat alligator in the South. Preferably deep fried on a stick.
It's not an incredibly common food but it can be found from food vendors like this at carnivals and festivals and Cajun restaurants and we eats it. We eats it up.

I, however, do NOT eat that deed-fried sweets crap. I tried a deep fried Oreo a couple years ago just for kicks and it was terrible. A soft cold Oreo covered in a thick fried pancake batter is gross. Just plain gross.




Mennonites watching a martial arts demonstration.
(We have quite a large Mennonite population in this area.)

These guys below even demonstrated how to escape someone pointing an AR-15 in your back... a horrifically handy survival skill to learn these days... *sigh*


 
Nope, I'm not pregnant. My girdle is mostly to tame the muffin top but it squishes all my floppy belly in and rounds it out in the front. Oh, well. I'm more comfortable looking like I'm 6 months pregnant than being seen with my belly sagging down to my thighs in a too-small dress, so there's that!


This leather worker dude was nice enough to let me invade his personal working space for some pics.


Daddy!



Just a little bit of the horse parade. That wagon is being pulled by mules... I think. I cut their heads off, but I'm pretty sure they're mules.


And then shortly after the horse parade comes the most adorable thing I've ever seen in my entire life.
I NEED IT!!!!!

So here are some questions for you:
Did you wear green on St Patrick's Day?
Are there Mennonites in your area?
Can you tell the difference between a horse and a mule?
Will you buy me a pink Jeep?

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

there's a thing going on over there

 Yeeeeeeaaahhh boy!
What's going on folks?
With me? Same ol' same ol'.
I've always got something to complain about these days but to be honest, I'm not in the mood.
That's a good thing right??? Not being in the mood to complain?



So anyways. 
These pics were to serve as outfit photos on this blog and photos for a giveaway I'm doing on my other blog.

So, how do I come about these giveaways anyway?
Wellllll, companies contact me and ask me to review their products.
I get a lot of offers from reps who either just don't understand my lifestyle or just don't care. 

No, I don't wanna review your fitness app! Be outta here!

Most of the time they're asking if I would like to share their article on my blog.

Those emails usually go something like this:
"Hello, Hollie! I came across your blog today and I love your style! So groovy! I have a website called Tax Prepping Soccer Moms and I would love it if you could share one of our articles on your blog, Quirky Bohemian Mama."

To which I am often tempted to reply: 
"What part of "Quirky Bohemian Mama" made you think that I or my audience would be interested in something like that? Shoo!!"


 Now, with all of that being said - here's my shining moment as a big fat hypocrite.

A wooden sign company asked if I could review a product. I briefly looked at the site and thought,"I can make this work," so I agreed. They sent me $100 gift card to buy with and a $100 gift card to give away.

I was like, cool! I can work with that!

Well.... the signs I could choose from were very nice, but just not really my style. 
I've been wanting to do a series of posts about old-fashioned etiquette and had an idea for a post about being a good hostess in your home. I thought this sign was very fitting so that's what I picked.

Soooo.... if you're interested in entering the giveaway for the $100 gift card to giftedoccasion.com  just head on over to my other blog for more info. 

Like I said, it's nice stuff! Just not 100% my style. That doesn't mean it won't be up your ally though so have fun!


Saturday, February 17, 2018

laser tag


HEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEYYYYYY.
I'm here.
I am so ridiculously behind on everything.
Sleep, bills, work, cleaning, world domination.
Phew! What's a girl to do?! 


The flea market booth is doing ok. It's still 90% just our junk but I'm stocking it with the Bohemian Bazaar merch as it comes in.

I've got a little bit of stuff arriving every day but unfortunately I can't put out a lot of it until I get a locking display case. Yeah, small items like jewelry tend to disappear quite often at flea markets.

 I've got about a dozen pieces of handmade jewelry I've been hanging on to from my Etsy store days and about 50 rings and dozens of bracelets I can't put out so if anyone has a 6'x3' display case they'd like to give me for free, just holler. I'll take it.



So fare I've gotten in child size belly dance coin belts, Indian parasols, incense, Hmong tribe hair doodads for kids, chopsticks, wood bead bracelets, Indian shoes and leather bracelets.

I don't feel like uploading photos of what's come in yet so check me out on Instagram. I'm sharing photos of the really good items as they come in.

What's on the way: adult size belly dance coin scarves, more incense, Rajasthani style bags, bamboo flutes, art print necklaces including Frida Kahlo paintings and more.


I'm starting super small, y'all but at least I'm starting. 
Moving forward slowly is better than not moving at all.


What kind of mom lets her daughter jump on the bed in cowboy boots??
This mom.

I'M the reason why we don't have nice things.

And I'm also the reason why my daughter will know that stripes and polka-dots are perfectly acceptable together.


Tuesday, January 30, 2018

What does the cow say?


Right now I'm ordering my first round of stock for the miniature Bohemian Bazaar and I'm so excited, I'm about to wet my little knickers.

I don't remember if I mentioned here or not that I'm going to transform my new flea market booth into a tiny version of my store that I was trying to open in the mall. I've had a lot of people suggest I do it this way since I want to start debt free and I think it's a darn fine idea.

Through GoFundMe I raised $300 to go toward opening the shop but um... yeah, I was about $3,600 shy of reaching my goal and $5,600 shy of what I actually needed to start with bare minimum. I was trying to raise money because instead of taking out a loan because I was certain the community was going to be excited enough that I'm replacing Romancing the Stone that they'd be willing to contribute. If there's a way to go debt-free, I'm going to go that way.

Meh. No biggie. I was totally prepared for that idea to not work out and I had no intentions of quitting if it didn't. There are plenty of other ways for me to skin this cat.


So, I closed the GoFundMe and I am no longer accepting donations(?) and I'm using the money I raised to get beautiful merch for my booth. 
I'm starting small. 
Very small...
BUT there's nowhere else in this town to get the kind of stuff I'm going to sell like belly dance accessories, Banjara handbags and Rajasthani parasols so I'm pretty confident that no one will complain that they have to go to a flea market to get it.

$300 might not sound like a lot for a start up, but I've already had a shopping list waiting of wholesale goods from India, China and Bali and I already have a little bit of stuff left from my renaissance faire booth. I have tons of jewelry I've made over the years and stuff I've bought wholesale. I just need a display case for those smaller items so my goods don't get knicked.

 

The booth is already stocked full of our stuff we've been trying to get rid of for years. We have accumulated a lot of stuff in our almost 8 years of marriage. Good heavens so much stuff. Purging the house has been an absolute delight. Getting rid of junk is very therapeutic. 

Well, we don't really have junk. We have stuff. Lots of stuff and nowhere to put it. So off to market it goes! As the booth empties of that stuff we'll start replacing it with the bohemian/hippie goodies.

Since the flea market has massive spaces, even entire rooms to rent we might just settle in there for a while. I mean  - think about it, I don't have to man the booth, hire employees or pay utilities... just  stock the booth and pay rent!

So there's that and here's my awesome offspring.
I stopped trying to get River to join because he turns into a grumpy old man when I try to get him to cooperate. Eh. Boys.



❤❤ Polkadots and plaid, a velvet blazer and a cow brooch. ❤❤


Tuesday, January 16, 2018

the technicolor dreamboat


Well, well, well.
Look at what the cat coughed up.
It's me!
Hi.



I'm surviving over here. Just barely... but I'm pulling through like a duck swimming in jelly.

I've recently started taking an ashwagandha and rhodiola supplement and dandelion detox tea and my physical stress symptoms have calmed down to a dull roar. Not even a roar. More like a wee little mew compared to what was happening to my body. Physically, I feel SO much better and brighter.

The pills make me a little aggressive though. Like, super type-A aggressive about weird things:

I'm going to clean today!
VACCUMING!
EFF YEAH!
DISHES! I HATE THEM! LET'S DO IT!
GET OUTTA MY WAY! AAAAGGGGHHHH!!!
DANG IT'S A LOVELY DAY!
GROCERIES!
TOILET PAPER!
RAWWWRRR!!

And then I rip my shirt off like Hulk Hogan and flex my muscles while barking at my children like a Tibetan mastiff.



So life is still pretty poopy right now and I'm still stressed but I don't feel like I'm about to have a stroke anymore! Yay!

GOOD NEWS REPORT:
My husband finally found a job after being "self employed" for over a year. He's not exactly sure when it starts but it will pay well. The bad part of all of this is it's a travelling job that will have him away from home for weeks at a time. Meh.

I already scratched of my New Year's plans of opening a flea market booth. We got an 8x8 booth in a very large and popular flea market. Since we opened it on Saturday afternoon and it's Tuesday now, we haven't had a chance to add everything and decorate but just yet but it's about 3/4 full so far.

The downside is, the market only allows 5 articles of clothing per booth! WTF??!?! Almost the entire booth was supposed to be kids clothes! OMG, we're drowning in kid's clothes piled up in trash bags here and we can't afford to just give them away so I'm hoping maybe I can butter the market owners up to get them to be a little lenient with me.


So here's what we wore to church Sunday.
ME: Handmedown blouse over a handmedown ikat print sundress layered over leggings and a tank top because it was in the 30s that day.

MISS CEDAR: Handmedown cardigan, Christmas gift dress from her Mimi, electric melon tights with unseen gold threads woven in and her favorite brown boots!






Soooo how are you all doing? Have you been sleeping well? Are you brushing twice a day and flossing?

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