#greenismyjam

Vintage GREEN….yes, that means the bulk of my vintage is GREEN. Of course, the word is a double dip these days. Green is to recycle, reuse and repurpose. My store is doing both! Finding great treasures that can be reused 🙂

At least once a week a customer asks me…… “What is your favorite color?” OR “What is your fascination with green.” When the favorite color question is asked….it’s fun to answer yellow or orange or purple….something that isn’t a big color in the store. My fascination…..I love the color green. I can be anywhere – and from a field away see the one green item!

Several years ago I bought my first green car ;0 My house has lots of green. (My husband loves blue….so I have had to do the nasty compromise and so our house is a mixture of blues, greens and whites – I love the cottage/farmhouse look). I literally wear something green every day. It probably would not surprise you to know all my earrings are green too ;0

My favorite green is sage….but I really do not discriminate against any shade!

Last month I finally am able to carry my own store t-shirts and baseball tees. I’m super excited to have green clothing with the store name on it. It is even more exciting when one of you purchases it. And then to have you send me the pic of you wearing it……makes my heart smile 😉

So, if you are like me…..and #greenisyourjam…..let me know!! (And, if you want a tee – I ship!)

(Tee photo courtesy of the designer….my dear friend, Amber @i.do.signs)

It’s Like Retro…..No, it IS Retro

This past weekend I was selling at a market. One of my customers pointed at this pitcher and said to her friend, “hey, look at that pitcher, it’s like retro!”……to which I explained it IS retro.

Everything that comes to my store is Vintage. It’s not made in China or reproduced. Each item is hunted for, found, washed, glued, fixed, repaired, painted and loved on. Not one item comes from another country or arrives in a box.

Which means what you find in my store may not be available the next time you come in…..or you may not be able to have two of the same item. It’s all unique. And all handpicked.

That’s my favorite part of the store….the hunt 🙂 finding a treasure that I think you may love and enjoy. And remember…..Vintage Green offers one-of-a-kind, authentic, vintage treasures 🙂

Jean’s Minnie House

Last week I had the opportunity to fall in love with my friend Jean’s Minnie House.

It is the darlingest little she-shed in her back yard. As I was gushing all over it she told me that …..her husband had built it for her, they used scraps, pieces, reused, repurposed, recycled it all. Jean’s extra touches, a piece of ribbon there, a strip of lace, twinkle lights, numbered drawers…….and are just pure eye candy.

You walk the path to get to the Minnie House. It is surrounded by flower gardens and a patio set. As I walked around it the window boxes and shutters were like sprinkles on a cake.

Jean also told me her Mom’s name was Minnie. (So so so very sweet)

Brace yourself though….you are going to want a Minnie House. Thank you, Jean, for sharing with me.

(And you need to know my pictures absolutely do not do justice to this sweet yard and Minnie House).

Feeling Big Time

While I was hatching, plotting and planning opening my dream store I spoke with all my business-owner friends. What are hidden costs, what is the key to surviving, what do you wish someone had told you, what would you do differently…….and if you know me; you know I asked all kinds of questions and wrote them in my notebook!

One of the hidden costs is how you package a purchase for a customer. The bag and the wrapping. Do you use ribbons? All upfront costs. So I did what I could afford first. Online, and at the grocery store, I bought plain brown bags. Then I wrote thank you on each bag (in green, of course!). At an estate sale I found boxes of old sewing patterns; super easy to use that as wrapping. That idea actually turned out really well! I love reusing the patterns.

But as my business feet have become more stable I started getting the itch for my next investment step. (May 1, 2017 will mark the two-year opening of Vintage Green.) My sight has been on getting real bags. Thanks to my store neighbor friends, VerDuins, they helped me find what I was looking for AND at a price I could afford. Yesterday I picked them up. I am super, way, crazy, over-the-top excited about having my OWN store bags.

So, hurry in to the store, buy something so I can put it in a bag for you! And …..I might just be wet-eyed <3

Two Jobs That I Love!

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It’s something I struggle with. Do you follow me because of Vintage Green? Do you follow me because you know me? Do you want to know more about me personally? Or less about me personally? Is it my store? Me? Or a little of both? And what is oversharing?!?!

But, I took a leap when I posted working in San Francisco. And sharing that I’m working with a Christian School. Some of you have asked what? wait? you do what exactly? So allow me to share some of my other life with you 🙂

My academic degrees: An undergrad degrees are in Public Relations and In Advertising. My Masters is in Management. All my degrees were accomplished as an adult. I never knew what I wanted to be when I grew up 🙂 But I love that I use my degrees and feel blessed to have a hubby (and sons) who have supported my academic dreams. They cheered me on all the way!

For 12 years I worked at a Christian School IN West Michigan. I was the Director of Advancement. My responsibilities included: Annual Funds, Capital Campaigns, Endowments, Special Events, Alumni, Recruitment and Retention, Communications, Marketing….well, the list was long 🙂 And most days – like any job – I loved it. About six years ago Christian Schools International invited me for lunch.

They are a “parent” organization (which means my pension plan is with them) and they host a lot of training, development, strategic planning, networking….the list is long. My work with them involves working and traveling with schools all over the US and Canada.

On some Mondays and Tuesdays I head to a Christian School someplace 🙂 We spend two days creating a platform on what advancement is and does…..and then on the second day we create their map. The map they live and breathe and tweak adjust. It’s sort of like asking what do you want to be when you grow up – and then how will you get there.

I LOVE it. The travel, the people, the work. But 2-4 days a month allows me to help my parents with their needs, hang with family, and of course have my vintage dream store. I am blessed!

Thanks for letting me share 🙂

Junkin with My Hubby

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A few weeks ago I talked Dan into going with me to Indiana. For 12 pieces of furniture. With the truck AND trailer. If you know Dan at all, you know this junkin life is not for him. I often kid that he would rather have a root canal, without drugs, before he would choose to go junkin!!

So, after much convincing we set off. Our first stop was a house that was for sale. I had been there about 10 days before. Brown, regular ranch. Nothing different or unique about it. So when I saw a brown ranch for sale I pointed it out. Dan said the Garmin said we had a little way yet. Nope, I was sure it was the house!

Dan backed the truck and trailer in. Off to the front door I went to get it unlocked. Except the key wouldn’t work. And I didn’t remember the front door having a screen door?? But I went in and out of the garage – so maybe I just needed to wiggle the screen door open and the key would work on the main door.

At this point Dan had the trailer all open and ready to load. So he tried the key. At which point he started telling me we had the wrong house. Off to the truck to check. So, yeah, okay, totally wrong address!! Hahahahaha. At which point Dan started pointing out the cops would be called and we would be charged with breaking and entering.

And he added…..all for your crap! We are going to be arrested for your crap!!

There is no way we could be charged with that. We had not broken anything nor had we entered!! Dan still cannot believe the neighborhood watch group didn’t call the cops. So back in the truck and off to the correct house. The key immediately worked there ;0 McCoy and I got out of the truck. McCoy was on his leash and staying on his leash. At which point Dan started telling me the house had rat poisoning, bugs, germs, rodents…you name it…..and McCoy would probably die from eating something…..all for my crap!!! (Nothing was ingested by McCoy and he is alive and wonderful!)

Now, I should tell you I am still laughing like crazy about the fact that we were at the wrong house. AND that when we got to the correct house Dan said he was staying in the truck until the door opened. AND if the cops showed up he was going to leave me. Hahahahahaha.

Then we arrived at the second house. Nine pieces of furniture waited for us. Three large dressers were on the third floor (this explains why I do not need a gym membership!). We decided to bring all the pieces to a cement patio and then decide how to load the truck and trailer.

Finally, all the pieces are on the patio and we are discussing loading when a…..well, shall I say….alcohol smelling gentleman comes over. He also had a very large slurpy cup that he kept taking long straw draws!! As I am locking up the house he starts talking with Dan.

Now, you should know Dan is much nicer than me. I kept loading, measuring, working and locking up the house. Every so often this guy would share something with Dan that made me snicker. Dan kept nodding his head and trying to be polite. Finally this guy heads home, we lock up the trailer and climb in the truck.

At which point Dan tells me he should not be driving with the fumes he just inhaled. Hahahahaha. And then tells me how this guy went on and one about what a “damn shame” it was that this lady passed away. Finally after several of those comments Dan asked what happened. The guy said she was 87 years old and one night she went to bed and did not wake up in the morning. Ending with a “damn shame.” At which point Dan told me…..that’s how I want to die. That is not a “damn shame!”

All this for your crap!!!!

I think I laughed all the way home. We had the wrong house, had an interesting neighbor, hauled heavy furniture down three flights of stairs…..and had a great day getting my crap! ;0

Part of what makes this funny is Dan’s dry sense of humor. I’m still laughing and repeating the story…two weeks later. And that is not a “damn shame!” You just cannot make this stuff up!

Haahahahahahaaa

McCoy and his Seventh Street Peeps

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McCoy. That’s really all I need to say. He has his own peeps, and is loved by customers and neighbors alike.

A typical day at the store is customers who come in just because they saw the sign that says “My Puppy, McCoy, is in the store.” Returning customers know his name and fuss with him. A handful of McCoy’s very favorite peeps bring in treats! (In case you want to be on that list please know McCoy is allergic to peanut butter – makes him shed like crazy)

Overtime Sports is next to Vintage Green. Jenny and Jay own the store. Their children, Alex and Rachel, love McCoy. They even have him over for sleepovers 🙂 Seriously 🙂 Jay, who is not a dog appreciator even fusses over McCoy. They keep treats at their store for him. When Jenny walks past my store she says, ” Hello McCoy, ” you need to know that McCoy loves Jenny. So wherever he is in the store he run to the door to see her 🙂

Sometimes Heidi, and her children Ainsley and Hunter, work at Overtime Sports. They are allergic to dogs. But that does not stop them from fussing all over McCoy. They take him for walks, play with him, pet him and invite him over to the store just to play! McCoy has his own playgroup 🙂

This picture is Ainsley and Hunter putting McCoy on the board and pulling him all over the store. Heidi captured the picture for me. How fun is this for McCoy!

Sherry, Owner of Booked for the Seasons, has a Keurig. We head over there a few times a week for coffee and tea. McCoy loves playing over there. He sniffs everything out and tries to get Sherry (and Diane on Wednesdays) to share their snacks with him. McCoy has even made friends with their customers!

Nail Haven is also part of McCoy’s circle. Pixie is their resident puppy. I think she weighs about four pounds!! And is cute as a button. When we put our sign on the corner McCoy runs in to get his nose kisses from Pixie. Sometimes Lib (Pixie’s partner in crime) and I find ourselves out back with the puppies for a potty break 🙂 They are so excited to see each other.

Dave, our mailman, always says hello to McCoy and gives him a pet or two. McCoy loves seeing Dave in the store. And it’s so sweet……as Dave is leaving he says, “have a great day or see you tomorrow” to me…..and then he says Bye McCoy 🙂

We (Dan and I – and our sons) are so blessed to have McCoy. He has made our lives immensely richer. Four-and-a-half years ago I was with my great niece, Abi, at a fall festival. Along the fence were lines of rescue dogs. Abi and I crawled along the cages and fussed and petted over all of them. When we got to McCoy he was in his cage lying down. He came out of his cage, climbed in to my lap, looked at me and I think both our hearts melted. Umm….honey, I’m bringing home a puppy! (Our last dog had passed away about six months before at 14.5 years). So having McCoy claim us filled that empty spot in our hearts.

I’ve come to realize that not only are we richer and happier in our lives with McCoy, he also blesses so many people every day. And I love, love, love that he has his very own special peeps on Seventh Street. <3

Longest Yard Sale 2016

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The Longest Yard Sale! LOVE it!!

There are so many great treasures for sale on 127 during those four days. The first year we stopped when it was dark and started when it was light. This year we realized we could meander, really look at items, chat with people and know the truck would still be full by the end of Friday. It was also REALLY hot this year. By 7 p.m. the first night we were headed for the hotel, a shower and a really cold hotel room.

The people you meet on 127 are there for the fun also. You talk and chat with people that you would never meet. We love meeting people from all over the United States. We love seeing some of the repeat vendors. One of our vendor friends saw us and said, “it’s the Michigan girls” 🙂

The treasures…..Only my truck and so much cash to spend (someday a trailer and more cash would be the goal). One of the problems of being a picker is you find cool treasures and want to keep them. I am strict about one thing in means one thing out. Well, this year I found a treasure to keep (you can see it is hung already and it replaced three floral pictures), I love this old church song board. The Psalther Hymnal numbers for Amazing Grace and Old Rugged Cross are up. More old Hymnal numbers will be going up. Thanks Aric at Rustic Diehls for this <3 If you have never been on the Longest Yard Sale you should put it on your calendar. But save some treasures for me ;0