Full Time Is Working Well

One of the benefits of working/cleaning full time again is I've lost 10 lbs(!) and I'm also managing to keep up with the new car payments! The clients who have moved just this past week is still a work in progress, I'm going over to the new home today (and tomorrow) to try and help get things organized while they are away for the weekend.  Moving from a three story house with tons of storage to an apartment with very little storage is proving to be quite the challenge. Its a lovely apartment though, brand spanking new renovations and a view to die for.
I spent Friday and yesterday at another clients (also away) scraping moss off of their brick patio while simultaneously pulling up weeds between the cracks of the bricks, it had gotten way out of control.  Sore back and hands and it looks lovely once again.
I need to remember to take before and after photos to show other potential clients!! Then again having just turned 68 this week I'm not sure this is the kind of work I should be advertising ;-)


Art and Crafts On Hold

I'm hoping once I get adjusted to doing cleaning work full time again that I'll be inspired to devote the weekends to creating, although, now that I have a reliable car I'd also like to get out and do a bit of exploring, trips outside the city, see some farm country, some mountains maybe.

And its finally official, the family I've been working with for 6 years that are moving, are moving to an apartment that is just a half block from me, the move is next weekend.  I can walk to work two days a week (well 3 actually, a new client is also close) and when winter comes I won't have to worry about losing that income because of snow or a car that won't start. I did mention in my previous post that as I'm getting older the smallest things can make me happy ;-)


Lots of Good Stuff

Last week was a good week.  So I've got three new clients for cleaning, two homes I've already work in and the third will be this Tuesday.  Both homes I've done so far were really in need of help, its good to feel needed, it makes doing this kind of work easier on the ego.
I had taken my 'new to me' car to my mechanic on Tuesday and got the great news that he couldn't find anything wrong with it.  He did point out though that one of my tires was bigger than the other three so I had to call the salesman where I bought it to get that situation fixed.  They were more than happy to replace the tire and sent me to the person who does their tires for them.  I got a brand new tire.
When I was leaving the tire place which was right smack in the middle of a road construction project I was having trouble getting out of their parking lot and back into traffic, cars just would not stop for me.  Construction worker to the rescue!! He was driving one of these......
and coming right towards me, I was in the area they were working on.  I backed up to get out of his way when he stopped, lifted up the bucket end of this thing and started to turn it out into the street, right into the traffic, it was the coolest thing!!  Traffic of course stopped in both directions and I was able to get back into traffic.  He pulled the bucket back out of the way and he had the biggest grin on his face as did I.  It was just too cool, it still makes me smile.

One of my cleaning clients that I've been with for about six years (can't believe its been that long!) is in the process of moving. When I first learned about this I was pretty nervous, this family is one that I see twice a week so its a big part of my income.  As luck would have it, it seems they may be moving just a half block from me!  I had told them about this beautiful apartment building just down the street from me and they checked it out and like it.  Its one of the very few places to rent that offers the amount of space that they need and moving there will keep them close to the places they need to stay close to. I've been helping them with the packing and was able to score a couple of things they were getting rid of.....some potting soil and clay pots, a couple of bottles to complete my bar setup :-).  I had taken some babies from a friends spider plant and they're growing like crazy so I was happy to get some pots and dirt. I'm getting easy to please in my old age lol.
And to round out the week of good stuff two sets of bracelets sold :-)


Lazy but productive weekend

I'm trying to fill my work week up with new homes to clean, closing up those empty slots of time will really help now that I have a car payment to squeeze into my monthly budget.  I need this extra work!  I listed my availability on our local community facebook page and got a couple of responses. I met with a really nice young family early this afternoon who happen to live right around the block from me (how totally convenient!) and it looks like we'll be able to work something out, tomorrow after work I'm meeting with another potential client (also really close by)who seems pretty interested so hopefully everything will fall into place.
I have to say that even though cleaning homes isn't the most glamorous job to have, it has definitely helped keep me in shape and healthy, important at my age (old!).  And I have to say it is a nice feeling knowing you're helping someone have a nice place to come home to......lord knows we all need a pleasant place to be where we can shut out the world for a bit these days.......sigh.

OH!......and somebody/anybody pleassssseeee buy a bracelet!!😩 LOL :-)


Panic Attack Over.......

.......well, almost.  Now I need to figure out how to pay for this..
Once I was done morning the loss of my old car I decided to see if she was worth a down payment on a 'new to me' used car.  I started with an online search of small dealers near me and found one that seemed to have a large stock of used cars and at reasonable prices.......I took my final ride in my little red convertible to Active Auto. Not sure how these guys did it but I managed to leave there with a 2007 Hyundai with, low miles, one owner, no accidents, great maintenance records and a very fair price.  However, there is still the issue of fitting the higher insurance and new car payment into an already stretched budget. So, I'm looking for more work and ways to promote my art.  Need a small gift for anyone? Please visit my website http://karenhetzer.com


Time To Rethink......

Well, I got some disturbing news this morning....its about my car, my 28 yr old car :-(.

I took her in for inspection and to get a coolant leak fixed this morning and upon inspection it was determined the car needed not only a new pump for the coolant but also the thermostat, and a new muffler, and two new shocks, and something for the steering was starting to go (I stopped listening, he didn't stop listing)........in other words time has finally caught up with her and she's just rusting and falling apart bit by bit.  I am having the pump replaced just to get me to the end of the month when the stickers expire and I can figure out the best way to go forward, putting more money into the car is not an option, and getting a new/or used car may also not be an option.
Meanwhile, working on some bracelets.
And I got a free simple hat pattern from myblueprint.com (formerly Craftsy) and plan to knock out a few quick hats.........

knitting calms me and I need calming about how.


And Grows and Grows....

I think a new plan is going to be focusing on taking part in a craft show or two.  There seems to be no interest to buy from visitors to my website so maybe I'd have better success at a craft show/fair. This makes me wish I still had Gladys.....does anyone remember Gladys?..... I did love that RV! Still think of that dream of traveling from craft show to craft show....sigh.

I've also got my ACEO prints/notecards I could sell....

and I could step up the knitting projects

and put together a fairly good collection of things to offer.......do a couple of paintings, maybe even some wood stools (like I use to make).
We'll see how the summer of creating goes :-). I'll check into some local show listings online.


Still Into Simple....but...

The bracelet making is still holding my attention, right now I'm focusing on learning new ways to do the finishing.  Knotting and burning seems a bit sloppy so far so I am continuing to practice, but would also like to discover ways to avoid some of that (I'm not a fan of the burning to seal things) so I spend a lot of time searching online for tips and tricks.  Today I was working on mastering the uni knot, its a nice way to attach a hook (the way fishermen do) when I don't want to do the adjustable closures I've been doing so far, and no burning involved! Here's a couple bracelets I did today.

The one with the hook closure is my first attempt at using the uni knot and it worked out well.
I now have 51 bracelets in my collection!
Next chance I get to work on these I want to start working on more complex knots/designs.


Sweet and Simple Bracelets

I seem to be focused on very simple bracelet designs.  Here's two of the latest that can be found on the website in the 'Bracelet' link.


Just Great!

In the past few weeks I have spent over $1300 getting the floor of my 1991 car repaired as well as getting one of my car windows fixed...last summer I drove the car with no AC and no working windows and I couldn't go through that again!  So now that I have maxed out my credit cards and never have spare money in the bank some idiot decided to break into my car this past weekend and he did it through the roof!! Just cut a big ol hole.  There is no money (or insurance money) to fix this one, just plastic and duct tape til whenever the car decides its time to go to that big junk yard in the sky. Ugh.
On a happier note I spent much of the weekend working on my website and making more bracelets. Check it out if you get a chance. karenhetzer.com


Checking In

I haven't been doing much (ok any) painting lately. I have a couple of small paintings and some prints listed on ebay but its like their third go around and no one seems interested. I think my style is out of favor right now......if only I could (or rather would want to) paint cats, they seem to be very popular.

Anyway.....I haven't been sitting idle, I'm boning up on my knitting skills and I'm learning to make macrame bracelets, I find both crafts very meditative.

I have closed my etsy shop, it never got any attention.  After listing some bracelets a few days ago I did make one sale after announcing on a community post that I was leaving etsy.  The sale was for a box of cards for $15 and after etsy took out for my listing fees, taxes etc I made $2.67, and they've decided to integrate with Paypal and disable peoples stand alone Paypal accounts which means you would have to wait for payment through etsy......ugh.  Doesn't matter, like I said that was the only sale I ever made and I just couldn't compete with 7.2 million other sellers, so many talented artists out there!
So........everything that I create to sell is now listed on my website , I still have prints and cards listed there for sale.

I have a Weebly website that I created a few years ago, they offer a few plans, one free and a couple other 'pay for' options including a way to sell through them.  I decided to keep my free plan and just direct folks to contact me if they want to purchase something.  It's hard to sell online when you can't afford to pay to promote/market stuff and I just can't bring myself to pay a monthly fee to set up a shop through a site provider on the hopes a sale will happen. I'm still in the process of redesigning my website to accommodate the changes and addition of new interests, my craft skills are still at the 'beginner' level, it feels like starting all over again.  I'm not complaining, it feels good to develop other interests, I haven't felt inspired in a really long time and that worried me more.