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Monday, April 02, 2007

Score at the Mouse

Joe and I went thriftin' the other day. Dang if I didn't score BIG time! It's not surprising though, I've got the BEST Thrift Store ever. It's named, The Church Mouse, just the "Mouse" to us. I can only count on one hand the number of times I've gone in there and not found something that I needed/wanted/desired but I've always had a great time!

The Mouse is a cute little shop, or at least it tries to be. It's ran by a local church and staffed by volunteers. Not all, but most of them are well beyond 65, and they work real hard at organizing their wares in boutique fashion. Some of the more spry of ladies put in whole 6 hour shifts, others, well, 2 hours is about all they can manage. They are such a friendly bunch and of course you just HAVE to chat a bit. Consequently a trip to the Mouse is an event, because it takes much longer to shop there. Generally speaking I'm a "power thrifter". I know the terrain of the various stores and head directly to the sections of the things I'm interested in. A quick walk through, glancing here and there and I'm outta there, 6 minutes, tops. I don't shop in those places I "thrift", at the Mouse I shop.

The Mouse has a completely different environment. You walk in, you greet a few of the ladies, you look through a section, you greet a few more ladies, if you picked something up, you might have a chat about it, you move on to another section, you greet someone else, you chat about what's in your hand again, and it goes on and on, section, by section, item by item. At the check out a gaggle of women assembles and they ooh and ahh over your purchases. "What are you going to do with this yarn...I use to knit/crochet before my hands got so bad" "Oh that fabric is lovely, what's it going to be...I use to sew before my eyes got so bad" "Oh honey that sweater will never fit you". I love my Ladies.

After all has been discussed and stories of what's was made in the past have been shared, then it's time add up the sale. Some days it goes smoothly and others well, we have fun. Some of the items in the shop are priced individually, some are just listed on a price sheet (books, magazines, purses and such). It can be difficult to read for some of the ladies. Sometimes the little ladies behind the checkout area will have to trot out to the other side of the counter to get far enough away so they can read it. (Just to be clear, the aforementioned price sheet is a poster board hanging on the wall with 3 inch lettering.) The lucky ones just stand there bobbing their heads valiantly trying to locate the appropriate level of their multi-focal eyeglasses. The usual procedure for check out is to have the bagger call out the prices (from the price sheet on the wall), to the lady who is manning the cash register, who confirms the price (from the price sheet on the wall.) Um, yeah, see where I'm going here? Remember what I just said regarding the readability of this price sheet? Multiple the appropriate reaction to said price sheet by two. On any given day, depending who is punching the register and who is bagging other types of mayhem can occur. More times than not a "discussion" regarding the size of the magazine will develop, the difference, price-wise, being a nickle. (how dreadful it would be if the customer got overcharged an entire nickel!!!) Often times the two will get mixed up and have to begin the tally again. (with all that head bobbing and climbing over each other who could blame them?) And on occasion, to be sure, an accusation of mumbling will be issued and be countered with a remark about someones lack of hearing and a lively "discussion" will ensue. You know the kind of "discussion" I'm talking about. The same kind you had as a kid with your sister or your best friend....my Dad called it squabbling.......Joe calls it knicker knacking. I love my Ladies!

So now you know why I said going to the Mouse was an event. I love the Mouse and the Ladies who work there. I plan my Mouse trips.....gotta give them at least an hour. :-)

Last week shopping at the Mouse scored this:






I can't read German, but I thought the picture looked interesting. Inside was this:








It's a pattern drafting program!!! Over 280 patterns! From the simple straight forward classics to...um....."specialty clothing" (?) Yeah, I don't think I'll be making a riding outfit anytime soon, but that just kinda sums up the scope of patterns in this kit/program/book.








There are woman's clothes, obviously, and children's, teen's, men and boys, swimwear and lingerie, to bridal fashions, and winter coats. I'm soooo pleased with this. Oh and btw, it is in English. The translation is a bit shaky regarding grammar, but then why the hell would that bother me right? :-) Every now and then there are words that aren't translated, mostly the names of the patterns (I think). The directions are just fine. If I run into trouble I'll be asking Monika. I'll drop her a line and say, 'Hey Monika, what's a "snitt"?'



As a matter of fact no time like the present....Hey Monika, what's a snitt?

Woodpecker

Because I am the geek that I am.......

Here are a couple of videos of my new friend. The first is just a clip of him eating. The second is a clip of him doing what woodpeckers do......banging their heads. Warning, if you are the type that is susceptible to the power of suggestion, take a couple of aspirin before you watch the second clip.

The quality of the videos is....um.....par for my aptitude for things like this.....sorry. It's still pretty drab and dull outside. Go figure, this is Illinois and it's springtime. I did NOT speed up the second video it's shot in real time .....puh-leeze, you know I don't know how to that!