Thursday, May 29, 2008

Lake Placid Country Fair, February 3, 2008

Mom, windblown after a day selling soap!

This weekend I went south of Orlando to the center part of the state...Lake Placid...the Caladium capital of the WORLD, don't ya know! LOL It is pretty for Florida, nice rolling hills, lots of lakes and generally pretty nice folks if you don't mess with anyone's pickup truck.

Now I am not naming names (MOM!) but in these parts you don't open a vehicle door without having a good grip on the door handle because you are liable to have a wind gust rip it from your hand and knock into the truck in the next parking spot...leaving a tell tale burgundy paint smudge...and hopefully no ding. Crap, I was worried the whole way back to I-4 that a redneck in a pretty green pickup was gonna run us off the road into a swamp.

This did actually happen ( the ding not the crash into the swamp), along with the same un-named person forgetting to leave a tip for the nice guy at the four star "Bob Evans" we ate at on Saturday night. Jeez, we were all wierded out over that. I mean, the guy brings my Mom the requested bowl full of lemon to accompany the iced tea, he fills that and my hot water tea thingy up several times, he fixes our bill when he brings out the two grilled chicken breast instead of the single I had orderd and finally dashes back into the kitchen and changes our dessert from apple pie to cherry cobbler when we see he has ordered the wrong thing on the check. I mean, dang he worked hard for that $5 tip. Wish I could have tipped the guy a $20...but he sure was sweet when Mom walked in there tonight and apologized for forgetting to leave the tip the night before.

Oh, but we weren't to taxed to not go get a nice pedicure and quick manicure and some new sandals too! Ah, what a nice girls weekend. :)

Oh, and the hotel (the Kenilworth Lodge) historic old place built in 1916 that now seems to be the winter home for a bunch of old grey haired golfers from up North. (In the summer I guess it is a younger crowd with bicycle rallies being held). Still it has all its character and charm, a huge deep old cast iron tub with shower in our room and I swear it...a heart shaped toilet in one the rooms my crafter friends stayed in last year. Oh, and lots of peeling paint too...but not in a seedy or down on your luck kinda way...just a weathered look to it. Thank God for the Check Inn Card (if you travel, google it)...I got it for under $50 a night with a nice but carb loaded breakfast. You had to search hard for some protein, but, I sniffed out the boiled eggs and nuked them for a real (kinda sorta) breakfast.

Off for a weekend now. Yippee. Gonna play with my parents before getting back to work. If I was up North I would be skiing...I swear!

Deerfield Beach Art Show, January 27, 2008

OK, so this weekend I am in South Florida and can I just say--Deerfield Beach is one of the most beautiful public beaches in the state. It is perfect. Not too busy, small town feel, LOTS of cute boyos and girlies...and a lifeguard tower with an ab master every block or so...oh and most importantly, not too many large bellied Canadian men in Speedos (Come on, you Canucks know this is the standard beach attire when the oldies retire to FL). Perfection, I am telling you.

The view from the walkway at the beach!

OH, and don't forget the fire department guys just across the street. (Hmmm, why so boy crazy in this post from a happily married gal????? One of my good friends is in the process of getting divorced, so that was our downtime activity this weekend.) And lots of police department guys to round out those uniformed and those in just swim trunks.

The show was alright, not huge money, but good solid money for the weekend...which is fine even though I was down from my best ever show last year here. Actually that show wasn't "here", it was at a local park on the other side of the intercoastal and I am not entirely sure I am glad they changed the location...except it made my friend so happy to see all the cute boys! And, as I mentioned the beach is PERFECT!

My "employees"...the best salespeople ever!
Mom and Dad Cummings!!

SO, what's with crazy, truly f**ked up guys that probably are too drunk or drugged up to maintain ANY self control???? On Saturday night--actually early morning, I was woke up from a dead sleep by shouting, pounding on doors and general chaos from outside our door. Mind you, I was wearing you know it was loud to wake me up. My friend was also wearing earplugs and we both got that rude awakening. AND, we are three women in a room with a crazy person outside the door with who knows what weapons....and we aren't in a sleazy hotel...we are in a nice business class LaQuinta!!! I was missing all of our husbands...even the one who is getting the boot!!!

SO, I call the front desk and little Norman answers the call and tells me it has to be really wild for him to do anything. When I told them that we were wearing earplugs and still heard shit happening he finally understood we had a "situation" up on the third floor. He sent the security guard up and within a half hour things had settled back down and we were sleeping again.

UNTIL about 4:30am when the asshole returned. I missed the first part of the fracas, but, apparently my friend heard a girl screaming, moaning and by the time I woke up it sounded like one of the sober guys involved was trying to calm the freaky one down. I called the front desk again and Norman told us that he was alone now and there was nothing he could do!! Dumb ass...I told him he better be dialing the cops before I did or he was gonna be having real problems! So, the sober friend must have convinced crazy guy to leave, and about a half hour the cops pulled up, scouted everything out and they left about 15 minutes later when everything was calm.

It was quiet the rest of the night...but it is amazing what thoughts come out of your subconscious when you are scared, tired and have something crazy like this happen around you. I didn't sleep a wink the rest of the night...wondering when the crazy guy was going to return with a gun...or worse...more crazy friends to knock our door down and get us! I know, stupid, but, it really messed with our minds. The next morning my drama queen friend re-enacted the whole scene for the front desk crew and asked for a free room night. (We got it!).

SO, we are now home from the four hour trip to Orlando at 10pm. Unpacking the van will have to wait until morning, but, I did empty out my email box and pack up some orders to go out in the morning. We are heading to the Orlando Gift Show tomorrow for shop ideas and hopefully some good deals on displays.

Road Picture: Sunset on the Turnpike!

Now, I am going to bed...hopefully the cat, the dog, me and hubby will sleep soundly.


Jensen Beach, January 20, 2008

The view from the street to the Intercoastal!

While most sane people have jobs that give them decent paychecks, health benefits and a, I make soap and then sell it at Art and Craft shows on weekends. No paycheck unless someone forks over $4.50 a bar!

The upside is I make my own hours, am my own boss and I truly LOVE what I create. The downside, other than not getting a paycheck and benefits, is that sometimes the weather sucks and your clients don't come out to buy.

Today was that type of day. Now, yes...this is Florida, so even when the weather is isn't like we have 20 below zero wind chill. But still, it gets pretty cold when you have a steady 20 MPH wind blowing off the water, right into your booth and it is about 60 degrees all day. That's not to mention that said wind wants to blow your expensive craft show tent away and all your stuff into the next county.

Mom and Dad "freezing"!!

So, I spent most of the day hoping the wind would stop and when that didn't happen filling up on hot tea and hot chocolate. This was definitely the kind of day I wished I drank coffee. Oh, but the day before it was 84 degrees and it all evens out in the end. :)