June 28, 2012

On morbid thoughts and foxes on the highway

What a weird day it's been. Michael's great-uncle is dying and we got a text this morning about his failing health. His mom suggested we come over and say our goodbyes. When we got there, the atmosphere was so depressing and quiet. I wanted to stop pretending the elephant in the room wasn't there and just ask the man what it felt like. What does it feel like to be terminally ill and know that your death is quickly impending? Could you come to terms with it and honestly think of it as a relief, or would you be scared up until the last second? I've only known this man for 3 years, and I wasn't sure what to say to him. I told him I loved him and that I was so glad to have met him and had him as part of my family. I couldn't help but cry when I told him goodbye.

Not to sound morbid, but this has made me think about death a lot lately. I have always been afraid of death. Not just my own, but death of my loved ones and the way death can happen to anyone, at anytime. Michael and I discussed how we would want to die if we had forewarning. He wouldn't want anyone but me and Molly there for the duration. He would want friends to come see him well before, but he says he doesn't want to die while being stared at by loved ones who don't know how to comfort a dying man.
I feel the same way. Ideally, I would be able to say goodbye to all my friends and family beforehand and just have Michael and Molly there with me. I think dying would feel like being on a crazy drug. Trying to grasp the thought of ceasing to be, no longer living--God, that is enormous.

I think back to a scene from The Doors' documentary (narrated by Johnny Depp) where Jim Morrison sees a dying fox on the side of highway. The fox is hyperventilating, struggling for air. He's been hit by a car. Jim pulls over and places a scarf over the fox's face, then drives away. A small gesture, sure, but the point is, Jim gave the fox a little privacy and solace in which to die in. No, it doesn't matter in the scheme of things; the fox is still dying on the side of some road. But that scene affected me when I saw it.

I'll just be over here, living and breathing and trying not to take it for granted. Good day.

June 26, 2012

Forget YOLO. Try SYOLOBYLIMITOL. Translation: inside.

SYOLOBYLIMITOL: Sure, you only live once but you live infinite moments inside that one life.

I know you're sick of YOLO. I am, too. But I think it's a good concept, sort of. Yes, you only live once. But that sounds so limited. That's putting the billions of Kodak-worthy, tear-jerking, awe-inspiring moments that make up our Earth experience into a tiny box labelled "Life."

I don't believe in that. I think it would take billions of boxes of varying shapes, colors and sizes to accurately sum up what we call life. Living isn't about how many times you get to do it (We get it, once) but about what happens during that time span. So don't think of "I only get one opportunity to get "life" right", but rather "I wake up every morning with a brand spanking new set of options and possibilities, and I want to take advantage of as many as I can." Make sense? Maybe I'm just rambling (wouldn't be the first time), but this thought kept me awake last night (having The Motto stuck in my head didn't help). I will cut Drake some slack on this one, because I think he gets the general concept: he also sings "Everybody dies, but not everybody lives".

Enough about Canadian rappers who used to star in my favorite (only) Canadian TV show, Degrassi, as a teen crippled by a pyscho's shooting at school. I just want to say, Drake's real name is Aubrey Graham. Seriously. He had no option but to go by something different. Aubrey is a little too ballet and not enough ghetto.

Today Michael and I took Molly to the creek, a little spot called Paradise. We brought along her little pink plastic pool and some balls and buckets (and tons of sunscreen) and had some sopping wet, blistering hot fun. It was REALLY fun when Molly pointed to the water we were playing in and said "Fish, look Mama, a fish!" The fish was indeed there, but also very dead. Disgustingly dead. Puffed and bloated and not at all like the friendly fish Molly thought it was. Anyway. We ate some watermelon and bananas and I may or may not have laid (lay?) down in the plastic pool and worked on my tan. Keep in mind that me laying in the pool makes it off limits to Molly. Not because I wouldn't allow it or anything, but because the pool is literally not big enough for the two of us.

This blog is so therapeutic for me because I don't have to bore Michael with my thoughts now (as much); I can write them on here and there is always a small chance that someone might a)agree b)laugh c)care d)decide I need to be featured in a popular magazine with a monthly column and a big paycheck.

Thanks for reading my innermost thoughts (how sad is it that Drake occupies those?).


June 25, 2012

On restraining yourself and getting jailed, potentially

Molly's party on Saturday was so much fun. We got to go out on the boat, jump off some cliffs, some people got to ride my uncle's jetski (not me though) and everyone ate some awesome all-American food. All while celebrating Molly's age advancement! Thanks to everyone for coming and bringing stuff to help us out! I love having a big family for gatherings like this.

Patch update: Molly didn't wear one at her party, and she has been taking a patch off at least once every 15 minutes. We have literally gone through 12 patches TODAY ALONE. It is now 12:35. This could be a problem.

I was so glad that two of my friends were able to come to Molly's party. My oldest friend and her sister (and nephew--he seriously made my womb ache for another child) came along with one of my best friends and her fiance.

I've been thinking about something today, just sort of mulling it over. Why do we put so many constraints on ourselves? I am split down the middle on this one. Part of me believes that it is necessary for us, as human beings living in an organized society, to voluntarily restrain some of our more basal instincts in order to keep society running relatively smoothly. Another part of me thinks we inherently crave danger and need risks and spontaneous behavior to fully "be human" and act like what we are. But on the first point, think of the chaos (anarchy) that would ensue if we all followed our desires without inhibition. Sure, you might experience some moments of pure pleasure, but the orderliness and safety that we so need and seek in society would be dead the moment we all thew caution to the wind.

On the other hand, restraining our basic desires can be negative. We are, in a way, denying part of ourselves (anyone remember the Id?) and that can be stressful. It can even lead to depression. I've come to the conclusion that the best way to handle this is balance, moderation being key. Take some moments in life to be ridiculous, and others to act like your grandmother.

Perhaps Usher and Ludacris said it best when they sang "We want a lady in the streets, but a freak in the sheets" on Yeah. I'm not ordering you to be a freak in the sheets, or even a lady in the streets. I'm just saying that for the most part, other people prefer the midway, the median, the middle. You don't choose the craziest muhfuh in the room to be your best friend, nor the weirdo in the corner that doesn't speak to anyone. You choose the cool guy who makes his rounds and knows how to have a good time without getting jailed or killed. Unless getting jailed and killed is your sort of thing.

Now, on to the real purpose for this post: Does anyone have a copy of 50 Shades of Gray for me to borrow? I will return it with no weird stains or page folds.

Sincerely, Debra Diane (NOT Diana, like I used to pretend)

June 22, 2012

On turning 2 and pregnant monsters

Molly's 2nd birthday is Sunday, and her party is tomorrow! I am so excited for it. My father-in-law is bringing his pontoon boat, my uncle is bringing his ski boat and wakeboard, and we'll be hanging out at the lake all afternoon. I'm still getting everything together, last minute, in typical Debra fashion. I'm really lucky to have awesome family and friends that are all helping out and bringing food for the party.

I bought the mix and decorating essentials for the cupcakes I'm making at the beginning of this week, which was a big mistake, because I've been dying to make (eat) them ever since. I will finally get to make (not eat) them tonight.

Molly makes me a proud mom all the time, but her compliance with the eye patch has blown me away. Sure, she's taken off several, but she seems to understand that she needs it and doesn't fight with me about putting one on. And she knows when she takes one off, another one is immediately going to replace it. After I put a new one on her, she always says "Do ya like it?" She cracks me up.

The fact that Molly is turning 2 is a little disconcerting to me. I know it sounds so cliche, but I really can't believe 2 years have passed since I walked into the hospital a pregnant monster and walked out a mother. I still remember how scared I was of giving birth and how amazed, delighted, and complete I felt the first time I saw her. We always had high hopes for her, but I never expected my own daughter could be such a beautiful, humorous, intelligent little girl. And little girl she is--no longer a baby, and she seems older than a toddler.

I'm debating heavily on whether or not to make Molly wear the patch tomorrow. I know that running around and playing is a lot harder when you can only see out of one eye, so I'm considering giving her a couple hours off. I just don't want to undo any progress we've made patching her eye 24/7 since Tuesday. I should've asked the doctor about it, but I really wasn't thinking about birthday parties when I heard the diagnosis.

I feel so much better now that I am seeing my friends again. I don't know what happened, but for a period of time, I just didn't hang out with anyone. I have seen 3 of my best friends in the last 2 weeks and it always lifts my spirits. I have always liked hanging out with guys because they aren't judgemental and I appreciate male humor, but there is nothing like hanging out with a girlfriend. Especially when you're married. I've missed the female companionship.

If it isn't apparent, I am dealing with Molly's diagnosis so much better now. Thank you to everyone that is praying for my little girl. The amount of support we've received from everyone we know has been such a blessing. I know that things will be okay and we WILL get through this.

One last thing: I read in a book last night (I can't divulge the title, because you would definitely laugh at me) an inspiring quote from the Bible, in Luke: "God blesses you who weep now, for in due time you will laugh." I really needed that. Maybe you did, too.

Have a great weekend and come back to read me Monday!


June 21, 2012

Tough times at the Carpenter household

Today, it really hit me. Molly will have to wear a patch every day, all day, until they can operate and remove the lens of her eye and implant another. That could take years. I thought I was dealing with it rather well until Michael came home for lunch, at which point I started sobbing. Just looking at my child struggling to see with one eye makes my heart literally hurt. Although I have already noticed that she is getting better with her depth perception using one eye, she still is having a hard time with it. She does not let me go very far from her. I know she feels unsure and she wants me to make her feel secure.

I have been reading with her to encourage her to use the eye more. We also try to get her to concentrate on small things to exercise the eye as well, like buckling a seatbelt or fitting shapes into holes. I just feel like I have no idea what I'm doing. This is unfamiliar territory and for the first time since I brought her home from the hospital, I feel inadequate as a mother. I'm worried about taking her out in public because I don't want anyone to stare at her or ask me "What happened to her eye?"

One of the most difficult things about patching is that a 2 year old does not want to keep one on. Yesterday, she kept the same patch on the whole day, but this morning, she has already gone through 4 patches. It is so hard to make her put another one on when she seems so happy to get one off. I just have to focus on the future benefits of it to stay sane.

June 20, 2012

Good news for people who love bad news.

As of right now, my heart is breaking for my daughter. We took her to Vanderbilt Eye Institute yesterday to check on what was wrong with her left eye. When she would watch TV or look out a window, her left eye would migrate up. We assumed it was "intermittent strabismus", like a lazy eye, but after being checked by 3 doctors, we were told she has a cataract in her left eye. The cataract has made it harder for her to see out of that eye, so that explained the way her eye would drift (the muscles have gotten weaker due to not being used as much). I was blown away. I thought cataracts were for old people.

The doctor told us it is essential to keep her good eye patched 24/7 for 2 weeks, until her next appointment. It's one thing to make your beautiful daughter wear an eye patch, but it hurt me so badly to know that we were covering her good eye, the one she predominantly uses to see. And trying to keep an eye patch on a 2 year old is proving to be difficult. We went through 4 patches yesterday afternoon because she kept pulling them off. I decided to wear one, too. Showing some solidarity for my little girl. I wanted to know what it would look like for her to see with only one eye and also wanted to let her know it was okay. If Mommy is doing it, it must be alright!

On another note, a good friend of mine that I've known since kindergarten is coming to visit today. This was good timing because I definitely need some cheering up and distraction. Molly loves having visitors, too.

Please pray for my daughter. It's so hard not being able to help her or protect her.

Until next time.


June 18, 2012

On what I really suck at and why I'm even telling you this

This week is an important one. Tomorrow, Molly has an appointment at the opthamologist's office @ Vanderbilt to clear some things up and her party is this weekend. Now, this might sound awfully selfish of me, but I am tired of talking about the birthday party and definitely tired of thinking about hot dogs and napkins and all that mess.

In fact, I think I'll make a little compilation of all the things I'm tired of. Right here.
On second thought, that list doesn't look very uplifting. It actually looks really depressing. I know, because I've already written the list out in Microsoft Word and I'm looking at it now, fairly certain that I won't include it in this post because it would be a real downer.

People might wonder what I'm good at, and more likely, what I really suck at. (People just love when you really suck at something). So here's a different list, one that might surprise you and make you feel better about yourself!

Good At
Hula hooping (go ahead and laugh)
Dancing (skills kept sharp by regular dance-offs with husband)
Being a mom
Remembering and hearing lyrics to songs (Seriously, it's amazing)

Really Suck At
Saying sorry
Drawing Faces
Getting to the point
Being serious
Remembering to put the wet laundry in the dryer
Video games (except for Black Ops, which I still miss)
Potty training Molly
Ironing clothes
Remembering to call you back (Aww)
Remembering that we had plans (Oops)
Remembering that it's our 3 year anniversary (uh oh)
Eating Chex Mix fairly--I eat all the bagel chips. ALLOFTHEM.

Now, don't get it twisted. This is not self-deprecation. This is self evaluation. I think we can all benefit from listing things that we're good at and things we're not. I think it's a false sense of confidence if you only remind yourself of your strengths. My confidence comes from the fact that I am well aware of my shortcomings and my talents, so no one could ever surprise me and knock me off my pedestal by putting me down. Not that they haven't tried. I just won't let them get a foot in the door. You shouldn't, either. Don't mean to turn into the motivational speaker (In a VAN, down by the RIVER), but sometimes we humans need some reminding.

Did you know that in our lifetime, we speak about 123,205,750 words? With that many, it might seem like none of your words have an impact. But the reality is that your words have a tremendous power over your life. I learned about something called self-fulfilling prophecy in Psychology and you might be interested: Self fulfilling prophecy theories state that 1. You believe something, untrue or not (Ex: I will fail this test) 2. Your actions are automatically molded around those beliefs (Ex: I won't even bother studying, I know I'll fail) 3. The "Prophecy" comes true BECAUSE you believed it and gave that negative thought, those negative words, power over your actions. I.E., you failed that test.

The moral of the story is: remind yourself of what you're good at, AND what you're no good at. Find peace with both. Let the words that you speak in this lifetime be encouraging, positive, or at least meaningful.

Dr. Deb

June 11, 2012

On rationality and what happens in my head while I sleep

After falling asleep today to the sound of Barney and friends singing about colors ("Orange..it's the color of an orange"), I started to have a strange dream.

I dreamed that I was walking through a grocery store, slowly picking up every item of interest and looking at the nutrition facts. Scrutinizing them, actually. This went on for what seemed like hours.

I found out, upon my rude awakening (thanks Molly!), that I was asleep for only fifteen minutes. It's good to know that I spend my precious nap time dreaming about counting calories and whether those baked chips are actually nutritious or not.

My good friend and I talked this weekend about what dreaming means. Does it sometimes reveal the future? Can it alert you to current circumstances that need a change? Is it really your subconscious reaching out to the conscious part of you? We agreed that scientists should spend lots of money to concentrate more on studying dreams, strictly for our benefit.
If dreams really do tell you something about yourself, I am superdisappointed. Mostly because this would mean that a) I need to lose weight b) I'm a really boring person c) we're out of baked Cheetos.

I have vivid dreams pretty often. It's rare for me to not remember my dreams upon waking. My dreams seem so real, sometimes I can't distinguish if something happened in reality or in a dream. I've dreamed about fighting with a friend before and then not called that person for a week, just having a lingering angry feeling toward them based on what they did in my head while I slept. That's rational.

I firmly believe that there are 2 types of people occupying our dear planet at this time: the dreamers and the people who hate hearing about your dreams. You can take this in a fluffy figurative way (oh, she means the dreamers, those who are idealists and "Dream Big") or in the way I actually mean it--one type, Type A,  has vivid dreams and want to tell you about them (and hear about other dreamers') and the other type, Type B, pretends to have a sudden commitment when they hear the phrase "I have to tell you about this wild dream I had last night...!" It just so happens that I am type A, while my husband is Type B.

Sample Dream Recollection Conversation with My Husband
Me: Oh my God, I had the craziest dream last night (it really wasn't that crazy but I want to talk about it)! Can I tell you about it?
Hubby: Oh, really (not enthused)? Sure, tell me. (Picks up magazine and doesn't make eye contact)
Me: Well, it started out with me, you, and Molly in an underground city where I just had this feeling we were all going to die. And then...oh, crap. I forgot what happened next. But somehow I ended up in this weird white apartment, even the furniture was white, and GOSH, it was just so weird.
Hubby: Hmmm.

How he doesn't enjoy hearing my recollections of these interesting dreams is just beyond me...


June 8, 2012

It isn't rude to be nude!

I want to make a case against being fully clothed at all times. Before you get all huffy or offended, let me say my piece. I am not a nudist, nor do I think it's appropriate to be naked in public. I just think back to the good old days, before Adam and Eve went about their sinnin' and had to wear those fig leaves or whatever. They were nude, and I guarantee you, those guys were loving it. You know why? Because it didn't feel wrong or dirty back then. God was totally cool with their nakedness (having created them that way and all) and they were not ashamed of their bare bods. Most likely, this also had to do with the fact that they were the only people around and there were no way hotter chicks or more muscle-y men for them to compete with, but you get it. They loved being naked.

Now, friends, what happened after Adam and Eve ate of that fruit? Their eyes were opened and they became ashamed of their nakedness. They scrambled around to find something to cover their man and lady-parts before God saw them in their birthday suits. (They must've forgotten God has X-ray vision and is omniscient).

 I can relate this experience to me at my home, chilling while nude. First, I'm really comfy, just got out of the shower, enjoying the air on my skin and feeling so rebellious sans clothes. Then, a knock at the door (gasp). Quick check thru the window to see who it is--my father in law! Oh, GREAT! I scrambled to put on something, anything, before he accidentally saw me in my natural form. I ended up donning a button down shirt and some of michael's shorts, which probably sent the same message as being naked would've, but the point is, I was ashamed.

It was at that point that I decided it shouldn't be shameful to be naked. It shouldn't be rude to be nude! (Dang, that was good.) Don't be embarrassed when you're bare-assed! If you show your friends pictures of your naked babies and say "How cute", if you watch pornography, if you have ever gone skinny-dipping, then you agree with me without realizing it.

I'm just going to come right out and say it: there is no reason to not be naked for at least an hour a day. You can even count your shower, unless you're a never-nude. If any of you are familiar with the show Arrested Development, you'll remember Tobias and his secret condition: he was a "Never-nude", which means he was literally never nude, not even for bathing. A permanent pair of Daisy Dukes were attached to his body. Weird point to end on, but I like it that way.


June 7, 2012

Job hunting: I know there's one out there somewhere...

Today I went "job hunting", or more realistically, I browsed Craigslist for 4 hours. You're probably thinking, 4 hours is a long time. Who would ever want to spend 4 hours online, looking at post after post of potential job opportunities that all seem to be *~Fake Promises of Making 1,000 bucks a day~* or total dummies looking for more dummies to join their dumb crew? Well, that person is me. The person who would want to do that, I mean. And after all that, I ended up with one (1) job lead.

I like to think of all applications as a challenge. They don't think I will fill out that application unless I am totally qualified for the job and think I can handle the responsibilities. Oh-ho-ho, are they wrong. I will fill out any application I can get my hands on, more because the blank spaces with easy questions like "Name?" and "Date of birth?" tempt me so much I can't resist. But also because there is a chance, however small, that I might be that lucky person who turns in an application and just gets hired because the manager is too stressed or apathetic to care who works there.

Think of this scenario.

At a successful business, the manager is having a stressful day. Like, really stressful. His kid is suspended from school for having a hit list, he forgot to pack a lunch, and his tire went flat on the way to work. Okay, so imagine this guy (or girl) is supposed to be in charge of hiring the new assistant at the office. He could obviously care less about this new employee, who they are, or when the last time they bathed is. My application, thoughtlessly filled out and sitting so prominently right on top of the stack, catches his eye in the middle of him banging his head repeatedly on the desk. He stops and picks it up. No felonies...no weird past jobs...a female...aww, hell. I'll hire her. She seems nice enough. She deserves $80,000 a year.
Maybe it's unlikely, but it could happen. I'm just waiting for it.

So this single job lead I ended up with would work nicely for the summer. I would be working 15-20 hours a week. My daughter would stay home with Michael or my mother-in-law while I worked. And it would give me a chance to get out of the house and make some money (feel worthy again). I'm waiting to hear back from the owner of the business, so I hope she doesn't read this and decide I'm an unfit employee. Thank God my blog isn't popular.

It would be REALLY nice to get paid for writing this. So if any of you have extra money lying around (especially the kind from the commericials with the eyes and the "Somebody's Watchin' Me" music), feel free to literally throw it at me. You don't even have to say it's for my blog.


June 5, 2012

I guess this is growing up.

As a child, I used to wonder what it would feel like to be a grown-up. I imagined there was a specific day or time that I would become an adult and that the change would be obvious to me and everyone around me.

What I've found in my brief 21 years is that growing up is not an event, but a process. I've also realized that others your age don't always mature along with you, and sometimes people don't notice when you've done a little internal "maturing."

It is hard for me to find friends that can relate to my situation. A lot of friends I used to be close with are now more like acquaintances. One of my closest friends and I recently reconnected and I've noticed that we get along so well now. I wonder if that is because now she is engaged and we have more common ground, understanding what it's like to be a young woman who has promised herself to one man. I know that can be hard for some of my single friends to get.

Back to people not noticing the maturing you may have done--in the past, I wasn't a great friend. I wasn't always nice to people I thought I was better than or smarter than. I was, in short, a bia-bia. While it could be argued that some of my bitch-characteristics still remain (road rage, the evil eye, etc), I know that I have made incredible progress with my attitude. I have begun to learn the fine art of "letting it be" and not needing to speak my opinion in every situation. It can hurt me to find out that some people from my past still think of me negatively or assume I never changed. Even worse when someone tries to use a past action of mine as a way to demean the person I am today.

Above all else, things just don't get to me the way they used to. No longer do I want to throw the hamburger at the Wendy's employee when they put pickles on it (yes, I did) or stare down a girl I don't like when I see her at WalMart. In the past, I thought it was honorable to always be yourself and show every emotion you felt.

Now that I'm growing up, I realize that excessive negativity is unattractive, consuming, and unproductive.  It's also a cycle. One negative thought (she shouldn't be wearing those shorts in public!) leads to another (And she must really need attention if she wears that low cut top) and another (I bet she's trashy and has 6 kids with different fathers). I'm definitely not saying I'm a saint. I just try to be aware of what comes out of my mouth, because things that seem harmless enough to say can come back and bite you. It's important for me to try and be a good role model for my daughter, because negativity fosters more negativity. If she hears me complaining all the time about my weight, friends, or long lines, I can expect the same behavior from her.

I sat down to write this blog and wasn't sure what I would write about. I guess this issue has really been on my mind lately. Sorry there wasn't any humor, and definitely no recipes, but maybe you know Debra a little better now.


June 4, 2012

Breakfast at Tiffany's. No, Shoney's.

It was a busy weekend. Michael's great-uncle has been moved from the hospice at St. Thomas back to his house (next door). We went over and hung out for a while when he got home Friday. You're never really sure how to approach situations like that; he isn't going to get better and the doctors say he'll die within a few weeks. I ended up telling him the truth, the only thing I could find to say: I'm glad you're home and get to spend your time here instead of in a hospital.

Michael and I slept over at our friend's house on Saturday night, which was so fun. I can't remember the last time I spent the night with a friend. We all went and got breakfast at Shoney's the next morning, where I ate my entire day's allotment for calories in a mere 30 minutes. Talent. I got to swimming in a pool instead of a creek or lake, so I was really excited about that.

Except for the bickering trio of children.
Child 1: MY corkscrews (dives) are better than yours, Junior.
Junior: Whatever! That is a lie. You both know I am the best at diving.
Child 3: Dad, tell them that I am the best diver. You saw me go in , I didn't even hit my head!
Dad: (not very motivated) Boys, now stop. You're all good at diving.
Child 1: Aahh! I cut my foot on the ladder! It's rusty--I don't have up to date shots! That means I've got tetanus!
Dad: (obviously impressed that the boy knows what tetanus is, but upset that the child is a whining drama queen) Tetanus? Aw, come on. Let me look at it. (Looks briefly, for what signs I'm not sure) Nope, just like I thought. No tetanus.

Even though my friend and I didn't exactly feel...safe due to the number of 45 year old men called by names like Pit Bull (I swear I am not making this up) that were appreciative of our swimsuit attire, we had a good time. And even got some water aerobics in, if kicking your feet and treading water while counting to 10 repeatedly counts as water aerobics.

Somehow, with the foodfest at Shoney's and all, I've managed to lose another 3 pounds this week, as determined by my yard sale find: a bright turquiose scale. It's like I lose more weight and am more active when I'm not trying as hard. Good to know.

I've heard from a couple people that they are reading and actually enjoying my blog. It makes me really happy to hear that because I really enjoy writing the posts and telling about the weird things that always seem to happen to me.

Thanks for following my train of thought!

June 2, 2012

Maybe I missed my calling.

Perhaps Healthcare Administration isn't the direction I should be going in. It's become clear to me, after the loads of cash I raked in at the yard sale, that I am natural born business woman. That's right, I can goad people into spending money on things they don't need, or even necessarily want. The trick is to make them THINK they need the item, and then feel guilty if they don't buy it. Here's an example:

Lady: Yeah, hon, it's cute, but I don't even HAVE a baby. Why would I need this stroller?
Me: Oh, strollers are great for loads of things. Do you have a pet? You could push them around the neighborhood.
Lady: No, I don't have a pet. I hate animals. And I don't live in a neighborhood.
Me: That's perfect! Then you can push the empty stroller around and no one will look at you and think you're crazy, since you're out in the boonies.
Lady: (a little more hesitant)....nah, I don't think I need it.
Me: (small sigh) Oh, alright. I just really wanted to sell as much of this stuff as possible. We'll be moving soon and there's no way I can carry all of this to the new house.
Lady: Can I give you $5?
Me: Sold!

I won't mention the loveseat in good condition that I sold for $10.
Or the brand new clothes that somehow slipped away for a mere 25 cents.
It's pointless to add that I may have sold an entire basket of new OPI nail polish for $3, or that those shoes I was NOT selling for less than $10 escaped my grasp with the promise of $2.

I think the key to doing business well is being friendly, which I've practiced so much in the mirror, I can almost do it now. I mean, if you asked any of the people that dealt with me during the sale, they would probably say that I was the nicest yard saler in the neighborhood. That may or may not have to do with the fact that the other sellers were 100 years old and not happy about baking in the sun or parting with their dusty quilts, but I digress. Friendly, check.

I learned a valuable lesson today. Sometimes it is better to sell something for a fraction of what you expected, just to get rid of the darn thing. Any amount of cash is better than lugging it back to the house (ahem, $10 loveseat) and finding a place to put it AGAIN.

I'm going to enjoy the rest of this beautiful weekend. Get off the computer and go do the same!


June 1, 2012

Sailing away

My plan for the yard sale is pretty simple. I will set up around 7am, placing everything in colorful containers with clearly labelled prices (no "This looks like it says 5 cents." "No, ma'am, that's $5.") and make sure to wear yard sale clothes. By this, I mean ugly clothes. See, other women, who comprise most of the "yard sale shoppers", are turned off when they notice a cute young mom selling her brand new clothes on the front porch of a yellow house. They are drawn like magnets when that mom is dressed in ugly clothes, especially if the stuff is brand new and they can all cackle together over what a great deal they got from the old hag in the yellow house. To find out more, read up on women's psychology. Something about jealousy.

All that being said, I better make lots of money (aka $100 or more).


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