Tuesday, 9 July 2013


Dear Diary,

So today has me thinking about opportunities. Some people are quite fortunate. Their opportunities come in the right form, at the right time. I am not one of those people. Usually I have to scramble to make the most of the opportunities presented to me and they usually involve a lot of tears. It was that way with my career, my relationships and my second dog. My dad was furious that I got him, but I couldn’t have asked for a more loving, loyal companion and incidentally he’s the best cuddler I’ve ever known. Don’t go telling my partner that though.

I mentioned in my previous post that I’d decided to create a beading business. I’m in the planning stages at this point in time and I’m finding that the more I sit and think about it, the more I realise needs doing before I can even think of teaching and selling. It’s overwhelming, it really is. There are so many things that need doing, all of them are important and all of them are being held up for one reason or another. It makes me feel like I took for granted the amount of effort that my favourite beading businesses put in to make my time as comfortable and enjoyable as possible…

Anyway, among the tasks I have to get done is organization and stocktake. A problem every beader faces is creating a storage system that is both efficient and doesn’t cost more money than the beads themselves. Ideally, any storage should be clear (seeing your beads usually helps you picture how you want to put them together), plastic (so that you don’t risk damaging the beads when they go in and out of the jar) and screw top (so that you don’t spray beads everywhere when you finally manage to uncork/uncap the bottle).

The store where I bought my last stash of jars recently informed me that the manufacturing company she purchases from no longer make my jars and that any subsequent orders would be more expensive, on top of this the owner hasn’t been very reliable about contacting me with orders I’ve placed with her in the past. I wasn’t feeling optimistic to say the least.

Home I went to rethink my storage strategy. Now, I don’t know about you but sometimes to get a solution to a problem, I find it helps me to blank out and troll websites. Pinterest (great for creative ideas) and Youtube (to find and learn techniques) usually lead me to eBay or Gumtree in search of things to work with. So I was trolling Gumtree the other night for free things when I happened upon a person who was giving away 15,000 lolly jars. For FREE!?! Turns out they hadn’t stored them properly and the lollies were out of date.

Now I mentioned previously that the timing of my opportunities and the way my opportunities present themselves is never quite ideal. Well, currently I’m living with my in-laws who due to circumstances beyond their control are being forced to sell up their home. To do this, they need to do a lot of work on the house to make it presentable. High on their priority list is getting rid of all the junk (mostly mine) which also means no junk in. I was pretty sure that at this point in time in their eyes, 15,000 lolly jars would classify as junk… And though the lolly jars were free, getting them home would not be. Not to mention where I was going to get the help to load and unload said lolly jars.

My partner hasn’t been impressed with my Gumtree finds in the past, mostly because he says in my excitement I never think about how I’m actually going to get whatever I've found home. That’s probably a fair criticism, but when opportunity knocks, you answer, right? So, much bribery (I’ll let you use your imagination here), 1 rental truck and a 1 ½ hour drive later found me standing in front of a mini mountain of lolly jars. I took a moment to mourn the jelly beans that would never be eaten (what can I say? I’m sentimental) and then it hits me, the realisation that this wasn’t going to be as easy as I thought it would be. Originally in the picture I could see a mini mountain of unboxed jars but I’d noticed that they were surrounded by pallets of boxed jars in the background. Of course my luck being what it is, we had had record breaking rain falls in the past week and all the boxes on the pallets peeled away at any attempt to lift them. One of the first boxes we placed in the truck, when we tried to lift it to take to the back of the truck split open like the zipper of a fat lady’s undersized jeans, spilling jars everywhere and punctuating the silence with the sound of breaking glass. Fail.

In the end we had to go to the supermarket to buy garbage bags, wade through the mountain of wet cardboard and carefully (so as to avoid cutting ourselves on broken glass and watching for spiders etc) hand pick jars out of the mess and load them into the bags. Incidentally, we did come across a leach of all things clinging onto the cardboard and sucking for dear life… All this while I was sick (stupid weather). It was slow going, but I think I ended up with about 3000 jars. I would have liked more but my partner needed to get back home to fulfil his refereeing commitments that day.

They will eventually need to be gutted (that is to say the lolly bags pulled out) and given a thorough scrubbing but I think the $3000 or so I saved was worth it.

Hopefully at some stage I’ll be able to post a pic of the jars in my ‘studio’.

Till next time…

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