Monday, February 4, 2013

The Good, the Bad and I'm Cranky!

Well, I'll start off with the good.  While wandering around HomeSense today, I can upon some amazing deals on scrapping paper.  No worries, I stayed strong and am still on task with the No Buy Challenge.  I still always seem to need to go and snoop through the deals. I guess that old habits are hard to break.  It was easy not to buy for me because I seriously had bought all these lines at some point.  Remember old Crate "Restorations"?  There was even a Crate line from 2009!  Then I came upon these....

Yes it is MME "Follow Your Heart" .... both lines!  I was buying these at full price around this time last year.  Now they are 20 sheets for $4.99.  That is $0.25 a sheet!  Yay.  It is a wish come true!  I couldn't pass up the deal so I picked them up as a gift for Susan.  But all of this old goodness at rock bottom prices got me to thinking.... thinking how much fun it will be next year to come upon these deals and buy them because I won't have them!  I am thinking that maybe next year I can do the "Only Buy On Sale Challenge!"  It is an exciting possibility.

As much as I am doing great at not buying supplies, I find myself looking for things for the studio.    Like these...

I am trying to incorporate turquoise into the room and it is all Lisa's fault.  ;)  More on that in another post.  In the meantime, I have to be careful not to replace one spending area with a new one.  It is counter productive.

Now for the bad.  After HomeSense I decided to go to my community second hand store.  I love looking around and you never know what kind of goodness you can find while thrifting. It started off well as I found some amazing vintage children's books cira 1950.  They look awesome in the den and just may even get read some day by a future grandchild, if they still read from books by then.  ;)  It went down hill after that when I spied these and recognized them.

Yes, these are some of my charity hats priced at $2.50 to $3.00 but on sale for $0.50.  :(  My heart sank.  These were given to someone in our community in the fall of 2011.  They were being collected by a group and were to be given to the inner city in need of warmth.  The main request from this group was mittens but they assured us that they were happy to receive hats and scarves too.  Yes, I saw one of my scarves there priced at $3.00.  I have a feeling that they decided that they didn't want hats and scarves and so donated them to the thrift store.  I recognized some hats that my Mom had knit because I know how she made her bands.  Susan's stuff was likely there too but I wouldn't recognize it.  My MIL, Pat, mostly made mittens so her stuff likely got where it should have.

  I talked to the lady in charge of donations and told her my sad story.  I asked if she knew who specifically had brought them in.  She understood my upset as I explained that the wool used on these hats cost between $5 and $7 each.  I explained that I am not criticizing their pricing but I am just upset that they didn't go where they were supposed to.  I bought back these 11 hats for a whopping $5.50.  She wanted me to just take them but I told her that I was happy to support her store as I know how much they help our community and give back.

So, I was really mad.  I called Susan to vent and can't help but wonder what happened to her awesome little apple hat and mitten set.  Was it sold for $1?  :(  Did it not go to some little girl who would just feel so proud to wear something so original and sweet.  :(  The sad thing is, we gave some of our knits to this same organization again this year.  We are going to talk to our contact person because if they have some of our knits I would like them back and not being sold for so little.  We will take them personally to some of the inner city schools along with what I bought back. This way they will be given to children who are cold and need them.

I am trying to not be jaded but I have decided to stop knitting for charity.  I have spent a fortune on high quality wool and put hours of work into creating something that I felt would keep some little person warm as well as make them feel good to wear something so soft and cheery.   The donation process has just been a bad experience.  When we dropped the remainder of this year's woolies off at our inner city centre, they make you drop them off at their thrift store.  I asked them if they would ensure that they were given to the people in need and not sold in their store.  They assured me yes, but as I was leaving they just tossed bags of our ( Susan, Mom, Pat and me) work that we spent hours making, into a big donation bin.  I came away with a bad feeling.

My donations will now come in a different form.  Food Bank is always a good option and I do have a soft spot for some little Dachshunds who need to find homes.  Not sure what I will do with my wool emporium sitting in the basement.  Maybe I'll have to start making afghans.  I will miss my knitting for charity and the good feeling that it used to give me.

Sorry for that rant from this cranky lady.  Check back soon.  I promise to be more upbeat and have a new CSI case solved to share with you.

Wishing you all a terrific week!



  1. I would be ticked too! Your knitting was so lovely and as you say, wool is expensive.

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  3. :-( It's disheartening to try to help those who are truly in need and not have it work out that way at all.

  4. Aww... Jen, I am so sorry!! That is so sad and I can completely understand your being upset and angry. I think your hats and scarves are beautiful. :)

  5. Please don't apologise - I know I'd feel exactly the same way. I'm so sorry that you have had this experience and I would be interested to know if you manage to find out what exactly happened. Keep us updated!

  6. ps: love the title of your post

  7. That is so sad...and the main reason why our Mission doesn't have a "thrift" shop. What we don't or can't use we pass on to other organisations that can use them.

    I wish we had bargain prices on awesome MME papers that are older. Here in South Africa, everything stays at the high price until it is eventually sold.

  8. I am over hear frustrated for you!!! I can't believe they ended up in a store being sold for so little, meanwhile I am CERTAIN there are many people in need who could have used them. We had a really bad experience a few years back with adopting a family for Christmas & really stayed away from donating for a while, we just had such a sour taste in our mouths over the whole experience. We are trying to work our way back though!! What about donating your hats/scarves to a warmth tree at a local church or school?? Or hook up directly with a local shelter. We have one near us for abused women & children. The people reside there so what is donated goes right to them immediately. Maybe do some investigating . . . your knitting is so beautiful it would be such a wonderful treasure for someone who otherwise would never own such a thing :)

  9. Wow, I'm upset for you! I understand being turned off and hope you can some day donate to a more appreciative cause! I think its a shame people don't understand what it takes to achieve such a wonderful gift. Those people could have found another wonderful cause instead of selling them.

    My sister went through chemo a few years back and wore hats donated for months at a time. The center had a drop off bin in their outer office. You could browse through the basket and pick a few out according to your personal taste. She really really appreciated it. She also received a prayer shawl from a local church that brought tears to our eyes it was so appreciated. After her chemo she returned the favor by returning them and made more. Crocheting was a wonderful diversion for her!

    I personally want to say "thank you" for making these gifts from the heart. People like you made a difference in my sister's and my family's life at a time when we needed it!

  10. Oh Jen, I am sorry that happened - I actually saw those hats at the store and thought they reminded me of your work. I will always remember a few years back, how excited the kids were when Carley brought the hats and mitts you made to her kindergarten class. Many of the kids came to school with no coats, let alone hats and mitts. It was neat to see them all playing in the playground with their bright colored gifts. I hope you can find a place to donate your fine work, where it will be truly appreciated and go where it is most needed.


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