Saturday, February 18, 2017

Tim Holtz Extravaganza Week Starts Monday . . .

It starts Monday, February 20 – only in our retail store in Dayton.  This notice is probably a little late for those of you who would require a flight from California – but for the locals, and those who might just need a rest break while traveling along I-70 or I-75 . . .

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It’s Tim Holtz Extravaganza Week – a celebration of all things Tim Holtz.  There will be classes and make and takes, along with 30% off all in-stock Tim Holtz items (in store only) and selected items chosen each day at up to 50% off.

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And of course there will be fun stuff – every $20 purchase in our store gets a ticket for a giveaway of autographed Tim Holtz items, plus other Tim Holtz goodies provided by Marco’s.  The giveaway will be held Sunday, February 26 at 3:00 p.m., but you don’t have to be present to win.

Click on this link for the schedule for the week!

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Escape from Non-Wintery Ohio . . .

I spend most of the three weeks or so after I get back from Texas in January longing to escape winter in Ohio.  And then the first of February arrives and my wish comes true, with shows in Georgia and Florida.  But this has not been a normal winter – temperatures have bounced back and forth between the teens and the sixties – we have had almost no snow . . .

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And the daffodils had already broken through in the third week of January.  That said, I still couldn’t wait to head south.

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But first I had a very special event to attend.  A few days before I left, my uncle turned 100.  Everett is an amazing guy – he and my grandpa’s sister Sarah have been married for 67 or so years, and still live in their home with daily visits from their daughter.  Talk about stamina – Sarah and Everett and their kids and grandkids and great-grandkids went out to eat the evening before the party, and then the party lasted for three hours at their church.  Everett had so much fun that he announced the next day he had decided to stick around until 105 and do it all again.

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Spotted in a McDonald’s in Duluth, Georgia – there were several of these signs there and from the copyright info, they obviously came from McDonald’s Corporate.  I guess the spellchecker was off that day . . .

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The Lawrenceville show did not have to share dates with the show in Florida, so everything was pretty much back to normal.

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When things calmed down a bit, customers had a chance to spend some time going through the embossing folders and the clearance table.

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After the Georgia show, I headed south to spend a few days in the sun during the day (and working during the evening).  Size sometimes has its privileges – I got to park the truck right across the drive from the main entrance to Disney’s Hollywood Studios.  Travel alert – about 1/3 of Hollywood Studios is under construction while new Toy Story and Star Wars lands are built.  If you were a fan of the Backlot Tour, Honey I Shrunk the Kids, or the Nascar Stunt Show – they are gone.

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I suspect that sometime in the not-to-distant future, my great-niece Amelia’s stroller will be found in an area much like this one . . .

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The Star Wars theme is everywhere – there is a Storm Trooper march through Hollywood Studios several times a day.  And I heard a rumor that Spaceship Earth at Epcot will eventually become the Death Star (which would be its first update in more than 30 years).

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This is – easily – the single food item I have encountered in my many Disney trips that is absolutely worth what you pay for it.  The Ice Cream Cookie Sandwich at the Plaza Ice Cream Parlor in the Magic Kingdom (on the right at the end of the first block on Main Street) is $5.29 – and I could barely eat all of it.

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After Disney, I spent a day with my childhood friends Jack and Beth – this was the view out my bedroom window.  And that huge lake is only about six feet deep all the way across.  Played golf with Jack, then headed for the gulf coast and played once again on my own.  Then it was back to work . . .

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Spotted in the hotel parking lot as I was leaving to set up the booth in New Port Richey.  It isn’t considered politically correct anymore and was replaced by a made-up bird years ago, but for Miami grads of a certain age (like me), this will always have meaning . . .

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With Sparkle ‘n’ Sprinkle at both shows on this trip, I can’t tell you how many people (vendors and customers alike) came up to me and asked if I knew how Margaret’s husband George was doing.  He is doing fine – spent a good part of the day helping/hindering Margaret as she set up her booth.

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My honorary aunt Dee Mielke always surprises me with Florida citrus – and yes, that is Ellen from Tessler’s in the background.  Ellen came up to me again and asked that I thank all of you for your cards and prayers and kindness – she said she received so many that there is no way she can ever reply to all of them.

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Two shots taken through the looking glass above the show floor – one at 6:00 on Friday evening, and the other at 12:00 on Saturday.

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Karen left a message on my phone on Saturday afternoon to remind me to bring what was left of the discontinued Spellbinders dies to the store when I got back.  Obviously, by the end of two shows there wasn’t a lot left.  But I got word while I was gone that more than 200 dies had been added to the list – all at 50% off the MSRPyou can click on this link to see the new batch.

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Monday morning after I made it home on Sunday night – the crocuses have appeared.  From the picture my brother sent me while I was in Florida, his appeared several days earlier.

Friday, January 27, 2017

It’s a Girl . . .

I found out yesterday morning that the moment had arrived – and our lives were forever going to change.  My niece Gina had gone into labor and was headed for the hospital.  Lots of updates, but not a lot of progress during the day – late in the afternoon, all of the grandparents were told to prepare for a long night.

After work, I picked up Emily and we headed there for a quick visit.  Little did we know . . .

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About 40 minutes after we arrived, my nephew Conner texted this pic out to the waiting room – Amelia Ann had arrived – the first baby girl in our immediate family in my lifetime.

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About an hour later, Conner emerged from the birthing suite.  That was the second picture I took of him – the first showed how tired he really was after 12 hours of labor.  But he faked it well for the second pic – and then went around the room collecting hugs.

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Lots of proud grandparents and great-grandparents.  Counting my mom and dad in Arizona, Amelia has four of each.  Times have changed since Ryan was born – skin-to-skin bonding with the mother is encouraged strongly, so none of us got to hold her last night.

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But that changed this morning . . . love my brother’s shirt.  So Emily and I hightailed it back to the hospital at lunch today, so we could complete the process we started last night . . .

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Please welcome to the world Miss Amelia Ann Smallwood – born Thursday, January 26, 2017 – 7 lbs. 3 oz. and 21¾” – with lots of dark brown hair and long fingers and toes.  I heeded Gina’s wishes and took no pictures of the new mother – yet.  But all are doing well, and we are grateful.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Tim Holtz Stamp Platform Is Unveiled . . .

The last Tim Holtz sneak peek was today – more than 20 minutes devoted to a single item.  And I have to admit that at first glance, I wondered what the big deal was about another MISTI look-alike – until I noticed that it’s reversible . . .

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The Tim Holtz Stamp Platform has a reversible stamping plate – one side for cling mounts, and one side for rubber stamps.  And that does appear to make it more than just a look-alike.  You can see for yourself by watching the sneak peek on Tim’s website or Facebook page.  They are expected to arrive in April – as usual, advance orders are 20% off the MSRP with free shipping in the Continental U.S.

With that, all of the new Tim Holtz items are on our site – except the Sizzix Alterations items which will magically appear on Saturday.

New items from Spellbinders, Faber-Castell, and probably more that I can’t remember as I type this will also appear on Saturday – stay tuned.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Ranger Chimes In . . .

More new Tim Holtz items were announced today – this time from Ranger, with three more sets of Distress Crayons, Distress Oxide Ink Pads, a Designer Bag, and more goodies.

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Due to the miracle of alphabetical order, all of the Ranger stuff shows up first when you click on this link to see all of the new Tim Holtz releases that we are allowed to show you so far.  Everything will be there by Saturday – advance orders are 20% Off the MSRP with Free Shipping in the Continental U.S.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Re-Change of Heart . . .

Apparently the CEO at Sizzix overruled those below him and decreed that we are not allowed to show you their new Tim Holtz releases until January 21 when “Creativation” (formerly CHA) 0pens.

That doesn’t mean you can’t look at them – you can click on this link and look at the Tim Holtz Sneak Peek.

But it does mean that you can’t place your advance orders until January 21.

So I suggest that you set a reminder on your phone.  I do this a lot – and sometimes it saves me.  Today was one of those days – my phone buzzed at 11:30 this morning and I had no idea why.  Then I read the message, and was reminded that Zoe and Nala had appointments at the vet an hour later for their annual checkups.  Two hours later, I had two grumpy pets who had been poked and prodded and pronounced healthy (two shots for the canine and one for the feline).

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Tim Holtz New Release Season Begins . . .

It actually started while I was driving home from Texas – the annual January ritual of Tim Holtz new item announcements.  Today is my first day back at work, so in-between the normal “first day back after a show catch-up” I have been working on getting them on our site. 

But I knew I was going to hit a roadblock today – the Sizzix “sneak peek” was today, but Sizzix wasn’t allowing anyone to put any of their new items on their sites until January 21.  Didn’t make sense . . .

Gary called Sizzix – and they still said “not until January 21”.  But then they called him back a few minutes later and had a change of heart.

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So along with lots of new Stampers Anonymous Cling Mount Sets and Layering Stencils like these, there will be Sizzix goodies and Advantus (Idea-ology) goodies and all sorts of other goodies that I haven’t even looked at yet.

And you’ll be able to see all of them as they magically appear on our site by clicking on this link at least once a day . . .

Of course, advance orders for each item are 20% off the MSRP until the first shipment arrives.