Saturday, April 8, 2017

Massive March Update!

Hello Dear Readers,

Has another month gone by? Time really does fly when you're busy, busy, busy.

Work is still being awful. I was hoping for a different position, but they ended up giving it to someone else. I asked to be switched back to a different department. I asked my new department head first just so she knew that it wasn't because of anything she was doing, but she told the manager who called me into her office and yelled at me for a long time trying all her managerial tricks to keep me where I am. She tore into me for several things that I had not told her but she heard through the grape vine (however when something happens she doesn't want to hear, she somehow never manages to hear that). I still hate the job, and severely dislike my manager but I'm keeping my mouth shut and my head down. The writing's on the wall that the company I work for is failing and right now it's a matter of when. I did look a little for new jobs, but not a whole lot. I'm kind of unsure exactly what to do. (Jumping ahead for April, I did have a job interview that I applied for on Thursday. I think it went well, but you never know. I'd appreciate some good thoughts). I'm trying a new thing where I keep my thoughts a little better guarded at work. I'm calling it "Operation: Shut Your Mouth".

Despite work sucking I did spend a lot of time working on E-bay. They have been honoring my four day request. I was planning on listing a bunch of Monster High dolls I purchased back in December, but I never stick with what I plan. Instead I found a box (that I knew was there) full of old stuff I wanted to sell. Some of it was so old I originally had it on the Doll Page Show and Sell Site, and that site's been gone for several years now. So instead of Monster High I did a big push in getting all the things listed. I wasn't able to get everything, I think there's four things left that need some TLC first, but other than that I got the entire box listed as well as several other items so in terms of numbers I got more than the box listed. I think once again I got over 50 listings done! (It was a LOT of listings). I also had fantastic, record breaking month with 33 sales! I had at least 2 people not pay, but I had 33 things sell. A lot of new things, but several things I had listed for a long time. I'm thrilled with those numbers. I know not every month will be that good, but boy selling all that stuff feels good. Sadly, I still have plenty of things to list. There's still so many things, but I have made amazing progress recently. My future plans have changed slightly, nothing is going to happen until the end of the year but that means I might actually have a chance to list everything! (If I stop buying so much that is).

Speaking of buying, I did purchase the My Little Pony Applejack doll. After all my E-bay sales I had the money so I decided to go ahead and buy him. I was going to buy him at the start of April, but I thought, "why wait?". I sold most of Pinkie Pie's clothing during the month so hopefully I can sell Applejack's clothes and recoup some of my expenses for him too. I like him, he's very handsome. I don't think I'm going to buy the Rainbow Dash dolls. I like his face, but prefer other dolls with different hair styles. Also I think I need a break from Integrity Dolls, and their hefty price tags! I did buy a vintage doll this month. Over on Etsy I found someone selling a Malibu Christie for 30 including shipping. She had melting and a broken arm, but that's still a good price for her. She's a little more TLC than what was disclosed (they mentioned nothing about her chewed feet), but she's still a good price. I've been working on her restoration, but it's slow work. I got her arm repaired, but it broke back off again, first time that's ever happened to me. I've repaired one hip and is working on the second one now. Interesting note, the melted plastic at her hips had a very deep red color. I guess the African American skin tone has a lot of red in it.

I also have continued my streak of buying the American Girl Megablocks. I have now purchased all of the first wave mini figures. I have also purchased the house, the small horse set, the pastry cart set, the small gymnastic set, and the beach house set. I got a pretty good deal on all of the sets and only paid 57 dollars out of pocket for everything. I feel my interest waning on them, but not my obsession. Right now I'm still missing the larger horse set, the ballet studio set, the small art studio set, the camping set, the shaved ice set, the athletic 3 doll set, and the second wave 6 solo doll sets. I'm kind of annoyed, the first time I saw the 3 doll set and the mini figure sets actually for sale was on the Mattel Store website and they were sold out! I would have bought them all! I'm trying to be good about buying the rest of them. I went a little hog wild this month so I'm going to try to take a break. I like the little figurines the best and don't really have the display space for the sets. They are cute though, but boy did that house take HOURS to put together. Now that I have so many I'm not enjoying them as much as I was when I just had a couple.

This month was also the Birthday meeting for the doll club. I wasn't as excited for this meeting as I had been in the past because last year the woman in charge of the club had her two young nephews there. And while they like Barbie they are still young boys at their Grandmother's house so they're a little more high energy than the rest of us. They were there this year too, but were a little less the main focus of the meeting. There was a lot to do at the meeting and I ended up leaving before we were all done. It was a mostly fun meeting and I'm glad I went, but from what I've seen in the club things are changing. I might be more aware of it, but things have been more negative lately. I fully admit I love to complain, but when I go to meetings I don't want to sit around and be negative about people. It just made me feel very uncomfortable, and has happened at the past several meetings. I like going to the meetings and like most of the people in the club, we've just lost a lot of people I've liked and I don't want to spend my entire time at the meetings discussing negative topics. Not to be all Pollyanna, but it's such a small hobby base can't we at least try to get along?


So that was my busy March. April has taken an interesting turn in what I've been doing *Spoiler Alert Re-roots* with a little E-bay work, but I usually work more at the end of the month more on E-bay than in the beginning. I'm hoping to continue my E-bay success, but I'm not expecting the numbers of March. It's weird, I don't have any real doll needs right now. I've gotten several things off my wish list and there's a few things left but they're pretty minor so I'm fine waiting for a good deal to get them. I'm thinking about saving up for another expensive doll in the 400-500 dollar range. We'll see, time will tell.

How was March for everyone else?

Sunday, March 12, 2017

February Update, Better Late Than Never, Right?

Hello everyone!

Bet you thought I was skipping over my February update, but fear not, I'm not. I've just been wrapping up the last few bits and pieces for February over on E-bay and wanted to wait until it was all finished before updating everyone. (I wrote that before I left this sitting in my draft pile for a month, whoops!)

I did a huge E-bay push last month and really focused on listing things. I don't have an exact number, but I completed at least 50 auctions last month. I'm very impressed with my number, especially since I didn't start at the beginning of the month working that hard on it but I really threw myself into it and made a lot of progress. All my hard work was rewarded with a decent amount of sales. I had a grand total of 14 sales for the month with a couple of them being buy-it-nows. And everyone paid! Pretty decent amounts per sale too. I still have a lot of things to list for sale, and even keep buying more resale items but I am making progress. I just need to keep my focus and list, list, list. I know not everything will sell before I move but things won't ever sell if I'm just sitting on them and not getting them listed.

Work has been.... okay. I've dropped my official complaints and am just surviving. My boss is still being just as bad but I just don't care any more. Luckily she's been doing a pretty good job of avoiding me which I don't mind. I realized something the other day, I've stopped asking questions. I used to ask people questions, including bringing up the subject entirely about the process, what they were doing, and why. And I can't remember the last time I did that. I'm just kind of sticking with what I know, doing the best job I can, and that's it. I've realized there's no future for me at that location. It's sad, but it is what it is. I've been doing a better job with my metrics, which does kind of have a negative affect on you. When my manager sees you're good at something she kind of forces you to do that something forever and does try to keep you limited so you can just do that. It's bad management, but I'm not the one in charge. I did hear from someone that the woman who has the most training in my department (who has become the unofficial department head) put in an application somewhere else. It would stink to lose her but I kind of want to see my manager's poor future planning really blow up in her face (I'm nothing if I'm not petty).

I did tell my manager that going forward I'm unable to do more than four days. I was originally only working four days but at Thanksgiving time I went up to five, which I was expecting and was fine with. I told my boss I would be willing to work six days in December since I wanted the extra hours. She failed to realize that meant overtime and was giving me 6 days, but around the same hours I was getting at 5 days. Luckily my other supervisor gave me more hours. Once Christmas was over I thought I'd dial back to 4, but she kept giving me 5. When I told another supervisor about this she told me my manager did say "Yeah, she did say you were being helpful and taking on the extra day.". Which is not true since I was never asked, just scheduled for it. But after last week where I had two short shifts I had enough. I left her a note saying I could only work 4 days and left it on her desk. Originally this week she had me working just 3 days (spiteful), but the schedule was tweaked and I got the 4 I wanted. I was fine with 3, that gives me more time to work on E-bay. I'm part time and have 100 percent open availability, the only thing I ask is that I only get 4 days. I don't think I'm asking for too much. I do think that once I get back to my 4 days routine I'll be a lot happier. It's not fun being there and the overall attitude can be very depressing.

With all my E-bay work I didn't have a lot of time for personal doll stuff. I sewed twice this month. The first time was making a dress for the Barbie Convention that I was volunteered for. I actually made two of the same dresses. I decided to make two and donate the best one. They didn't turn out awful, but one was slightly better than the other so one I donated for the auction and the other one I donated to my doll club for it's annual raffle. I also made a more summery body suit for Charlotte, but I messed it up, overworked it, and gave up on it. She's still wearing it, so I plan on going back to it eventually, just not right now.

I would like to say my spending habits dialed back some too but that would be a bold faced lie. I spent a lot of money, but only bought a couple of dolls. I will say that I was good and avoided buying anything at the Disney store their last big sale, but there's nothing I really wanted. I mean, I do want the Elena of Avalor clothing set and kind of still want the Beast doll to see if Joe can wear his clothes, but that's it. I am hoping the classic dolls will have new shoe colors but they won't come out until the late summer, but I digress. I bought one vintage doll (who was at the top of my grail list) and the Pinkie Pie doll from the Integrity MLP line. I like his face and hair color, but not his hair style. I actually had to return my first one. He had a faint indented line on his forehead and a spot on his torso that was slightly scuffed up. They mailed me a replacement, but he still has the forehead line. I guess it's a mold flaw. He might end up re-rooted. I like the pink hair, but want it longer and straight. That's a project for much later though I don't have time to start a re-root and he's low on the list for one. I plan on saving up for Applejack next. I also like Rainbow Dash, but I just like his face mold and prefer the two other dolls that used the face mold. I just need to decide which is better, spending 80 for a nude doll that I'd like better, or spending 140 on a dressed doll and reselling the clothes.

It wasn't all expensive dolls. I've also fallen heads over heel for the Megabloks American Girl figures. I bought a set of three of them back in October but really got into them last month. When I was working on E-bay I dug them out since they were with some items I was going to sell and I found myself playing with them again and again. They also make cute American Girl sized dolls for 1:6 scale dolls. I found out Walmart had the other set of 3 dolls on sale on their website with free store delivery. I ordered them and waited for them to arrive. They finally did and Walmart sent me the wrong set! The one I already had, and one that was cheaper on the site. When I picked it up I wasn't sure who made the mistake so I took it but once I got home I saw that I had ordered the correct set. I returned it by mail and waited for my replacement. It finally arrived and they mailed out the next set. I had to contact them about it since the tracking showed they got it back and days later they still hadn't mailed out my replacement. That finally arrived and once again they sent me the wrong set! I just took it from the back of the store to the front of the store and returned it. The woman who took my return even commented that the item numbers were very different between the two items. The really sucky thing is that they just got both sets in the store but they were full priced. I checked online, but they don't price match in the store any more (even to their own website). I ended up buying the set off of Amazon and they sent me the right set the first time. I also bought several of the small single packs. I think they're too expensive at 3.99 each but I found a lot of them for under 3 dollars so I bought them. I'm still waiting for two single packs but as of right now I'm just two more away from owning all of the first wave solo dolls. I know there's a wave 2 with six solo dolls and another 3 pack (which I have only seen listed on the Megabloks website and they don't sell those there). After that there's several building sets that include dolls in them. I'm really trying to not go overboard but I feel like I'm going to be. I'm already trying to justify buying the most expensive building set because it's a house and they dolls need a house!

Wish me luck on that! See everyone next month!

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

January Update (Slightly Rambly)

Hello Dear Readers,

How are you? I'm okay. I keep saying that, and mostly it's true. January was quite a rough month for a variety of reasons. First we had Simba's passing (thank you to everyone who left those kind comments on that post), then the following Monday my Aunt passed away, then my Grandmother went into the hospital (for a short period of time as a precaution and she's fine now). As I told someone else, 2016 was rough but 2017 feels like a personal attack.

E-bay's been surprisingly good. I had three go-arounds this month with decent success. The last one ended on this Sunday and I got a grand total of 6 bidders! As of right now 4 of them have paid with just waiting for the final two. I've got a bad feeling about one of them so I'm not holding my breath on them paying. If everyone pays I'll have 16 sales for the month with 1 item I had to close due to not paying. I'm pleased to say that a couple of the sales this month were for the Beauty and the Beast gift set. With this week's sales, I have sold the last of the first set and just have four pieces left from the second set. One is already listed, one is in draft form, and the other two need pictures and their listing text tweaked. It'll be nice to have it all done (and hopefully selling). While this month I had a lot of sales, the overall sales amount is pretty low. A lot of the items were pretty cheap. Which is fine by me. I had a lot of things sell that I've had for YEARS and I'm glad to get rid of them. One of the items was a .99 cent auction, but I'm glad someone finally wanted it. I haven't been very good about refilling the empty sales slots but I'm working practically a full time work schedule so I haven't had a lot of time. Plus I'm tired, so very very tired.

Work has been awful. I was working overtime in December and while January has dialed back some I've still be stuck working there 5 days usually getting hours in the high 20's, even though last week and this week I have over 32 hours. I was biting my tongue about saying anything since my immediate supervisor was leaving and I was hoping to get a chance at her job, but my jerk of a manager didn't even let me interview for the job. I knew going in that my manager had someone on my team she wanted for the position. I asked the person who was leaving and she told me that my boss wanted Kathy for the job. And to be quite frank, it was Kathy's job to loose. However, once I applied I was called into the office for a quick and dirty job interview with my manager. My manager wasn't the person making the final call, we were told that interviews were going to be done by Mike, the head for the entire district. He came in last Thursday for a review of the store, I dressed up and brought two copies of my resume in case he was there doing interviews. He was, just not with me. The only person he had an interview with was Kathy. I know one other person applied as well and they weren't granted an interview either. So my boss got what she wanted while technically not breaking the rules. Now the job isn't Kathy's just yet, they're still looking outside the store so they might find someone they like better. I'm not mad at Kathy, I'm just very hurt and mad that I wasn't even given the opportunity by my boss.

To add insult to injury that same day my manager also made me be the cashier for my entire shift, 7.5 hours. I know my job is cashier/mca but I absolutely hate cashiering. I left that job back in March when I was a just a cashier and went to a different store. Lately she's been sticking me to be the cashier and letting the other associates be the mca's. One of the reasons why I'm forced to be a cashier is because I'm good at selling our loyalty program (the credit card, not so much), but no more. I will be a cashier, but I'm not going to fight so much for it. I wouldn't mind being the cashier so much if I wasn't getting short changed because of it. Because I keep getting stuck at the register, I have had very little training as a mca. I see other people, people who started much later than me getting trained on the mca part of the job and surpassing me. I've been fighting so hard to be trained and not getting anything, so I've given up. The other day I was there with another MCA who had to go home because she was sick and I honestly didn't know what to do. I had an idea, but I don't have the training for the unwritten rules of what I can and can't do on the sales floor for clothes. So I decided, she wanted a cashier, she'll get a cashier.

Like I said, I'm not mad at not getting the job, the person who interviewed was really the one to beat, I'm mad I wasn't even given the opportunity to try for it. After all I do for that store. Whenever I'm at work other associates ask me questions all the time when they need help. I call myself an assistant-lead. But no more, I can't turn it off completely (and don't want to be rude to my fellow associates), but there will be a lot more "I don't know, I'm just a cashier" comments so they can call a manager to help, it's not my job. As my boss seems to enjoy reminding me, I am on the lowest rung of the ladder.

All this discord has really got me thinking about my future. (as you can see from my last rambling post), and I think I'm getting done with my small town. I was hoping to get a full time job to be more financially secure for the next step, but that's not going to happen where I am, job wise and location wise. It's going to be rough and I'll most likely have to get a second job, but I'm warming up to the idea. Right now my plans would involve me flying when I move, leaving most of my dolls behind. And I'm fine with that. With my last two moves I did learn a lot, I have to pack smarter.

And I really need to get back to E-bay. Really, really, need to get back.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Ramblings, serious ramblings.

Hello everyone,

Thank you all for your kind words on Simba's passing. It's been a little over a week now and while I'm still very upset over it, things are getting a little better. Sometimes it doesn't feel real but sometimes it just feels too real.

I haven't been doing much lately, my motivation was bad before and now I just don't have the energy for anything even things I want to do. I am currently working on a new doll that needs a little TLC. My no dolls in January goal fell by the wayside, but whatever. I have a couple projects I'm focusing on right now, nothing major but maybe if I have two or three that I switch between I might actually get something done one of these days. I'm also working on taking apart some cheap gift card holders I bought at the Dollar Tree after Christmas for a quarter each for the sequins on it. I've only used sequins once in my entire sewing career, but these are interesting enough to spend the time saving, plus deconstructing something like that can be rather soothing to me.

However, this post isn't about dolls or crafts (or even E-bay, spoiler alert, nothing's going on there either). This post I want to talk about my job, it's going to be a lot of rambling thinking out loud from this point on, so if you're just here for dolls and sewing feel free to skip it.

So my immediate supervisor put in her notice at the start of the month. She'd been with the company for a little under 2 years. She came from another store in the mall that closed. She's going back to her original store, but in a different location. She'll be going back as an office person, which is what she wanted. I'm sad to see her go, but I know she'll be happier there so I wish her the best. I am trying to think of something nice to get her as a thank you gift, but haven't thought anything yet. I know her, but I don't know her that well privately, and I don't want to get her something too personal since we're not too buddy-buddy. I plan on asking someone at work she's close to for suggestions.

Anyway, with B leaving, that means her job will be open. I haven't been with the company for very long (especially since I came back last September), but I think I could do her job. I'm smart, want to learn, and already know a lot about how the company is run. I cannot tell you the number of times people, some of whom have been there a lot longer than I have ask me how to do certain things. I really think I would make a good manager. I already consider myself a junior manager with some of the things I'm asked to do. However, there are places in the job that I'm not that strong, when I came back it was in a partially different position than when I left and honestly, I haven't gotten the training I think I should have gotten. I've learned some things, but overall I know there's several people who are stronger than me in that aspect.

Right now there's two people who I think are my biggest competition, K and M. K has been with the company the longest, knows several parts of the job that I don't know, and is a key holder already. She is also the top choice from the boss according to B. M is someone who knows the job more than anybody, however she has no managerial experience and hasn't been there super long. It's funny how each of us has our strengths, if only they could combine them for the ideal candidate. I was feeling rather hopeful about my odds before I knew that K was interested, but after I found out she was, I felt my opportunity slipping away.

B put in her notice on the 6th, and the proper channels were alerted pretty quickly. However her job has still not been posted online and according to her, they told her they weren't going to post it until after she's gone on the 27th. Meaning there's going to be no time for her to train her successor. It also turns out that some higher ups are going to be doing the interviews, which is weird since the last few big job openings have been all done internally. B theorized that they have someone outside of the store in mind for the position so they're setting it up to bring them in. I wouldn't put it past the company to stack the decks in their favor to bring someone in. I wouldn't even be surprised if they didn't even have the job actually posted and just hired who they wanted. I'll freely admit I'd be very upset over losing out the job to some of my co-workers but I'd be even more upset if they brought someone else into the situation without giving any of us the chance.

And what does this mean for me? Honestly, quite a lot. I've been growing more and more unsatisfied at work. I've been spending a lot of time as a cashier and I hate being a cashier. It's so boring and I hate being pressured to get credit all the time. Plus my manager is still a jerk so I wouldn't mind not having to deal with that any more. (Ironically if I did get B's job I'd be dealing with that manager a lot). When I heard that B was leaving it did excite me for the chance to advance in the company, put my skills to use and learn more, but if that's not going to happen, why should I stay? I'm going to try for this job and if I don't get it, or don't get anything from at least applying (K getting the position would leave a key holder slot open), I'm going to start looking for another job or possibly transferring to another store. That might mean moving out and saying goodbye to my family but it might just have to be what I need to do.

The thought of that is terrifying to me, the last time I tired it was a terrible disaster and there's more reasons for me to stay now than before. My family is having a hard time making ends meet and have been borrowing money from me. I don't mind doing it, they are my family after all, and I don't really think I'll ever get that money back, but what happens when I move out, will I be able to afford my expenses plus theirs? Last time I was working two part time jobs and still couldn't afford my extremely simple lifestyle (by which I mean a roof over my head, food, and transportation), would trying again really bring me much more? And I'm not just gambling my future this time, it's mine and my family's, which I'm not sure is a risk I can take.

Why is life so hard?!?

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Sad Post

Hello everyone, this is going to be a hard blog to write.

Simba-cat died today a little after 10:27 this morning. 

I think her kidney's gave out on her. Last February she had a problem where she stopped eating and drinking, had some tummy issues, and couldn't keep her head up. I stayed with her the entire time and back then I managed to get her to eat and she pulled through. She had a couple minor flair ups during the year, but nothing as bad as the first one, until this one. She had been having issues and stupid me didn't see any of the signs until she was pretty bad off. However, I think even if I had seen what was happening, there was nothing I could do. Monday night she was having mobility issues and Tuesday I woke up to her sprawled out unnaturally on the bed and in bad shape. I spent the day with her and all night with her trying to keep her comfortable and see if she would eat. She did have a couple bites of food during the day, but in the evening stopped eating or drinking. I was using an eyedropper to try to keep her hydrated in some attempt to help her.

I was hoping we'd get another miracle, but it just wasn't meant to be. For most of the morning she was just lying there, she was breathing but not much else. Shortly before she died she began gasping slightly. There was nothing I could do, I just stayed with her petting her and comforting her.

And then she was gone.

And I'm having a really hard time with it. I wasn't Simba's primary caregiver for very long, but she's been in my life a very long time. When she died, she was 21 years old and she could have been even older. We adopted her from my Grandmother around three years ago when she decided that she couldn't properly take care of her when she was away in Florida 6 months out of the year. When we got her she was a matted mess (my cousins who watched her during the winters were not decent pet owners), but I got her cleaned up and she was my little princess for three years. We didn't always get along, and I do regret how sometimes I wouldn't give her the attention she wanted, but I hope she was happy here, for the short time she was here. 

I've been crying off and on all day. I have to go back to work tomorrow and I'm not looking forward to it. Hopefully I can keep myself together. I'm also not looking forward to bedtime tonight. I've been keeping my mind occupied today with watching TV shows online, but when the computer's shut down and the lights are off, I'm alone with my thoughts and that's the last thing I want right now.

I'm also dreading putting away her things, it makes it so more real. She spent pretty much all of her time here in my room, but even when she was here, I didn't always see her. She was always finding new spots to sleep in, so she wasn't always in my line of sight. I already dumped her water dish and gave her leftover food to the other cats. I still have to put away her brush, her dry food, and get rid of her litter box. It just feels so final, and even though I know it is final, I hate it. I'm really going to miss her.

It's going to be rough for a while, getting used to her not being here. I've left the room a few times already and every time I come back I find myself looking for her, but then I realize she's not here any more and my heart breaks all over again. I was thinking about it, after Sunshine passed away pretty quickly we got Willow who ended up living in my room for a while as she got accumulated for the house, after that we got Simba who ended up living in my room for the rest of her life. It's been years since I didn't have a cat in my room, it's going to take some time getting used to. I'm especially going to miss her sleeping around my legs when it's cold. She brought me a lot of comfort.

I'm probably going to be MIA for a little while. I was having a hard 2017 already and the loss of Simba has really put me in a bad place. I'm sure I will be back, but I can't say how soon.

Sweet dreams my little Simba-bimba, I'm going to miss you. 
 

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

December Round Up!

I got called into work today. They're having a visit tomorrow from a higher up and they wanted people to come in and clean. I didn't really want to, but felt that I should. My hours got cut way back this week and last week I ended up calling out a day since the car wouldn't start. (also I remembered that the visit was the next day after I replied to my boss's text so I was kinda stuck). It's not a huge deal I went in on my day off, I was having a hard time getting motivated so if I hadn't gone in I probably wouldn't have gotten much done. They also asked two of my co-workers if they could come in and they both said no, so hopefully I also got some brownie points.

I didn't go in until after 2. I would have gone in earlier, but I had packages to get into the mail. Last Sunday was the final go around for E-bay for December and I'm pleased to say I had seven sales, and they all paid. I technically got another free go around of listings from E-bay, but didn't start them until the last day which was the 1st, so I'm counting that for January and any sales will count towards that month and I'm closing the books for December.

December ended up being a fairly good sales month. With that seven I ended it with 16 completed sales. I had a lot of non-bidders with 5 that I had to open and close cases since people didn't pay. Several of those completed sales people did the buy it now option so I got more money from those. It was a nice mix of old and new, and even the new wasn't that new since I didn't get any new auctions done for the month. I haven't had the time yet this month, but I'm hoping to get back into listing things soon and refilling spaces where things have sold. I was making some progress on the pile of stuff on my dresser, but managed to rebury it with things that I bought in December. Hopefully the sun will show up again soon and I can get back to taking pictures. Won't be sold just sitting there on my dresser!

I haven't bought a new doll (again) this month. I'm still waiting for things in the mail, I assume it'll be harder when I'm not waiting for anything to come in the mail. I haven't been super great in my resolve to not window shop. I have managed to stay away from E-bay (but I did find myself there the other day) but Etsy is so hard to not click over and scope out the new listings. At least I'm trying to be better and not just going about business as usual with doll buying.

I might be going out thrifting this week. I need to go out to the dollar store and get more packing tape and white tissue paper. With all my sales I've almost run out of both. If I go out I might make a day of it and hit up the thrift stores. I really shouldn't, but I'm weak, weak I tell you! Hopefully I'll find nothing and return home empty handed, except for tape and tissue paper of course.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Happy New Year! Happy Resolutions!

Hello everyone,

I have survived December (and to the same extent 2016). December was such a rough month in terms of work, so I'm kind of looking forward to the less demanding work schedule that's coming up. I say kind of because less hours also means less money, which I'm not looking forward to as much. I'm still working towards my moving out goal, but I'd feel more comfortable with more in my savings.

I've had yesterday and today off, which has been amazing. It's been over a month since I've had two days off in a week, and longer for two days back to back. I went to bed at 8:30 on Friday and slept for 12 hours. Granted I woke up every 4 hours and had to fall back asleep but boy did I need to rest. I'm still a bit tired, but that did help me a lot in getting better rested than before. Last night I didn't sleep so hot, I think I'm coming down with a cold. I've been a bit more sneezy today and one of my tonsils hurts (but just one, isn't that weird?)

My family still hasn't done Christmas and on Thursday of last week my mother did say that since my father and I had last Saturday off we could do it then, per my sister's suggestion. I promptly shut that down. It was less than 48 hours away and I had to work the next day, I still have things to get and nothing was wrapped. I felt a little bad saying no since we're not sure the next day we'll get to do it, but I was so tired. I just could not do it that day, or at least not do it and feel good about it.

Even with my first two days off in a while I haven't been lazy. Between the past two days, I've done a bunch of laundry, washed my floor, put away a bunch of stuff, organized one of my closets, cleaned off my bedside table, and I've even started to make progress on cleaning off my desk! It's not a total disaster any more, but it's still going to take some work to get it into more of a user friendly shape. There's still plenty to do, but I'm going to keep working at it. I know every day won't be as successful as I've been the past few days, but I want to keep making progress.

Which brings me to the reason why I wanted to do this post, some resolutions. I'm not going to set a year long resolution, but I want to set a couple for the month. Not sure if I'll do it every month, but we shall see. For January I'm going to set two personal goals for myself.

The first one is to go without buying a doll for the entire month. 

I've already kind of broken this rule since I bought one this morning, but I'm not counting it since I meant to buy it last night and use up some expiring Shop Your Way Points from Sears. It was just the tan Look Barbie doll from last year. I don't really want her, but she was the best thing to use my points on. I will be keeping her body and selling the rest. I don't really need another articulated body (I sorted through the boxes of spares I have today and WOW I have a lot), but at this point it's kind of a collection within the collection. I'm kind of cheating for the month because I actually have several dolls pre-ordered due in in January. I have the Lady Gaga Monster High doll, the Brunette Classic Black dress Silkstone, and a couple Integrity bodies so I'll have plenty to look forward to. I also have my Christmas presents. And if that's not enough I have plenty of new dolls to open that I already have. I went a bit hog wild in December and bought several new dolls that I haven't gotten to debox yet so if I get a hankering for something new I could just open one of those. I'm not sure if I'll stay strong for all of January, but I really should focus on what I already have instead of getting more (although there's still several things on my wish list from last year and I'm already building my one for upcoming dolls for 2017!).

My second goal is to get back to working on E-bay. I was very good in November, I actually got over 30 auctions finished for the month. My goal was to end up with an average of one a day and I succeeded! I didn't do any for December I just didn't have the time, but now I've got plenty of new merchandise to sell and plenty of old things that I still need to list. With my amazing amount of sales in November and a decent amount of sales in December I have lots of slots that need to be re-filled, and this month I'm going to get back into it. That's why it's good to get the desk cleaned off, I need it to take pictures. Ideally I'd like to get it so that this year my E-bay sales actually pay for my new dolls. This doesn't usually happen since I spend so much but I would like to at least try to dial back my purchases for this year. January is already looking to be expensive and that's without new dolls. I still have to pay for the Silkstone (or have my card charged), pay for the rest of the Integrity doll bodies (I did a deposit already), pay to rejoin Barbie Collector, and my dues for the Doll Club are due.

I'd really like to spend my time working on the dolls I already have instead of just buying more. I can't say I'll be successful at it, but I'm going to try, especially when I find myself checking online selling sites to go away from there and focus my energy elsewhere. Why I could write a new blog post a week with the time I spend on E-bay. And I really should get back into it, my poor neglected blog.

So that's my goals for January, no new dolls and back to chugging away at E-bay. Has anyone else made any resolutions they're going to try for?

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Asking for help from re-rooters! (Cross Posted Everywhere)

Since I'm on an uneasy break from collecting vintage Barbie I'm thinking it might be time to work on some of the re-roots I've had for ages. This isn't easy because I have to decide hair color and I'm so indecisive, especially when I'm trying to color match a vintage doll.

I have a small collection of saran swatches of doll hair colors I've collected over the years that I've labeled and put on a jump ring to help me decide what hair colors would work best when I'm deciding on a doll's hair color. However with Dolly Hair doing away with their free sample program (you can still get samples when you order but I like placing large orders to save on shipping) I have lots that I'm still missing. So I was wondering if any people had any spare hair from one of the main sellers of doll hair they could give me. I don't need much, just a hair plug of each color. I'd gladly pay shipping since it'll fit in a regular envelope.

Right now the colors I'm missing (from Dolly Hair's website) are:

Ice White, Snow White, Dark Summer Sand, Golden Brown, Mocha Brown, Milk Chocolate Brown, Russet Brown, Red Red Wine, Wild Lavender, Vineyard Violet, Great Grape, Violet Iris, Foxglove Lavender, Mauvelous Pink, Shocking Fuchsia, Chromatic Pink, Sherbet Pink, Cupcake Pink, Sugarless Gum Pink, Cotton Candy Pink, Pillar Box Red, Torch Auburn, Flame Auburn, Copper Auburn, Rusty Auburn, Golden Auburn, Tangerine Orange, Sunshine Yellow, Mint Ice, Seafoam Green, Lagoon Blue, Phthalo Blue, Midnight Blue, Raven Black, and Silver Bullet.

I also don't have any of the mystic hair colors, but I figure that would be a long shot since it's so expensive.

If you have any Restore Doll hair you'd be willing to donate please let me know the name and I'll gladly look up to see if I have the color already.

Thanks everyone!

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

A quick post

Hello Dear Readers,

I know I said there wouldn't be any posts for December, but you know how I love to contradict myself.

I wanted to give everyone a quick E-bay update, this is as much for my benefit as yours. I had a banner month for November, with a grand total of 21 sales! I think it's a record breaking total. I purchased the Elena of Avalor doll gift set from the Disney store earlier in the month since Joe can wear the Prince clothes, but it seems in a cost cutting measure Disney made all the prince clothes tighter so he couldn't fit in any of them! *Curse his meaty thighs* It looks like they also made the female clothing tighter too, one shirt I couldn't even get on a doll since I was worried I'd tear it. I also noticed a few details missing on one dress they including in the singing doll set. From the entire gift set I ended up keeping two pairs of shoes and listing the rest of it. Very disappointing overall since I didn't really want the shoes and they bumped up the cost of the set by 10 dollars. I'm pleased to say that everything sold, with several people doing Buy it Nows so I more than made my money back from it. I wish that the Beauty and the Beast Gift set sold like that. I still have several things left from that gift set, including some doubles since I bought the set twice.

Even with a lot of the sales coming from the Elena set I had a good mix of old and new selling. I even managed to sell John Littlechap! Now I just have two more of them to get rid of..... I still have lots of things to sell, but I am pleased when something does sell, especially when it's something that I've had kicking around for ages. Every listing that sell means money and another listing space for something else to move out.

It wasn't all sales, sales, sales for the month. I had 3 non-payers. One person emailed me saying their daughter bid and would like to cancel the bid. I don't believe them, but I still cancelled it. Surprisingly the email came after they won the auction... The other two people never contacted me at all, so I just had to open a case against them and wait to get my money back.

Things have slowed down a lot for December. I actually got two free weeks of listings. I assume people aren't listings things for the month and E-bay wants to keep their auctions numbers up. Even with so many things listed I haven't had very many sales. I think I got 3 in the first week, including one non-payer who I just closed the case on, followed by 6 in the second week. So far out of those six, two have paid. Hopefully the rest pay. I'm tired of having to open cases and waiting to be able to close them. I still have my 50 free listings for the month. I thought about listing them this week but then they'd end on Christmas which I think most people won't near a computer for. So I'll be listing them on Christmas and letting them end the following Sunday. I'm not expecting too many bidders, but even if a couple things end up selling I'll be happy.

I haven't done any new listings for the month. I tried earlier in the month but didn't get past the picture taking phase. I went up to working 6 days at work, and over 40 hours each week. I just don't have time to work on E-bay on my day off. I don't do much on my days off, I'm just too tired. I do have lots of new things to list come January, I've bought several new dolls mostly for their clothes and shoes so I'll be selling off what I don't want. I'll just have to unearth them first. With working so many hours I haven't been keeping things as organized as I should be, and I was never really great at that in the first place. At this point I'm going to need a team of explorers to help me uncover the desk in January.

Luckily after Christmas things will drop off and I will hopefully get a handle on things.

I probably won't be able to post until after Christmas (I'm working 49 hours this week), so I hope everyone has a great Christmas and gets lots of fun stuff!!!!!

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Goodbye (for December)

Hello everyone.

Just so everyone knows, I will not be able to update this blog next month, or the rest of this month. I work retail and this is our busy season. Tomorrow starts a 5 day work week where I have 37 hours. It's quite a step up since the previous weeks I was just working 4 days averaging 25 hours a week. We're quite short staffed at the moment with only having two new seasonal people (one I don't have much hope lasting much longer) and still being down people since they fired 4 people several months back. At least I'm lucky, right now all our full time people are working 6 days with 50+ hours. I don't think I could do that. 

Right now I'm focusing on surviving the holiday season. I haven't been sharing much with you, but I have been getting new dolls (including a Titan Ponytail), working on E-bay (I did 10 listings today!), and sewing. The past few weeks I've actually made a pair of underwear, a pair of socks, a shirt for Joe, a pair of pants, a shirt, a skirt, an underskirt, and two dresses. It doesn't sound like much but when I was working at that new place I wasn't sewing anything. This is actually quite a step up from then.

I'll see everyone in January. I hope everyone has a safe and happy Holiday season. And please, be nice to retail associates, they're trying to do their job as best as they can and are pretty powerless.