Sunday, November 17, 2013

Birthday Musings

Today is my birthday so I decided I would write a post of things I've learned. It can be for posterity or something.

1. Life is so fleetingly short.
  • It is too short to hold a grudge or disown family members because they choose to live differently than you do.
2. Laughter is amazing.
  • I laugh a lot and it picks my spirits up better than anything else. I find humor in a lot of different things.
3. Be kind.
  • Always
4. Give compliments.
  • I always think of nice things in my head. In the past I was too shy to say anything. One day, I decided that if someone complimented me, I would love it. I decided to always say them out loud from now on. So they will know that someone random appreciated something about them
5. Smile!
  • It really does brighten people's day.
6. Love your job.
  • My job frequently sucks. The secret is that I work for a good cause so it makes the bad parts worth it. Laughter also helps. A lot!
7. People are amazing!
  • You can learn something and love something about anyone if you look hard enough.
8. Be thoughtful.
  • SLOW down and take the extra time to be thoughtful when you are thanking someone, giving a gift, or just letting them know they are appreciated.
9. It's okay to have a bad day.
  • It doesn't make you a bad person or a failure. I will apologize to my children when I yell at them needlessly. Mostly because I had a bad day. They always smile at me and say, it's okay. We are used to it! Uh, that's not exactly the legacy I want to leave but they love me unconditionally and it reminds me to fill my heart with love instead of anger or stress.
10. Work at your worthwhile friendships.
  • Especially if they are worth keeping around. If you let them slide then your friendship wasn't worth their time to keep around either.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Donating - The DOs and DON'Ts

Do - Donate the honey pot
Don't - Donate it with the honey still inside
*The same applies to any condiment holder like salt shakers and your secret corn dog sauce. Also applies to trash receptacles.

Do - Donate unopened toothpaste samples
Don't - Donate your dentures

Do - Donate shoes
Don't - Donate just one shoe, or just the sole, or ones you were wearing when you stepped in doggy droppings and then you were too lazy to clean them off.

Do - Appreciate the staff and volunteers at the store.
Don't - Donate casseroles and cakes to show us your appreciation. Store bought and sealed is probably the best way to go in this day and age of untrustworthy food poisonings. We probably don't know you well enough to sample your cooking.

Do - Donate clean undergarments - Believe it or not, there ARE people that can't afford to get new ones.
Don't - Leave your used always pads on the said undergarments. - I like to use dashes.

Do - Donate items from your storage unit that you stuck there because you wanted to save them for later. Then later came and you realized you never missed them.
Don't - Donate any hives or nests that may have accumulated in those boxes of items while you were absent from their presence.

Do - Donate Tupperware and other handy storage devices
Don't - Donate your empty chocolate boxes. They go in recycling or the garbage. You are just going to make us jealous that you were able to eat all that chocolate and all we got was the wrappings.

Do - Donate your recyclable items. Metals, wires, broken electronics, shopping bags, newspapers.
Don't - Donate your trash because you felt too guilty throwing it away so you GAVE it away instead and now your mind is at ease because you passed your carbon footprint on to someone else. Don't use run on sentences unless you want to make a point by not allowing your reader to breath until you finally type some sort of punctuation.

Do - Donate weird and unique items so that I can take pictures and blog about it.
Don't - Donate your hair and toenail clipping collection.

Don't donate food - If we get it, then we will take it to the homeless shelter. Don't donate expired food items though. That's just another way of getting rid of trash guilt free.

Do - Donate antique/vintage items
Don't - Donate suspected murder weapons

Do - Donate books
Don't - Donate books that you accidentally dropped in the bathtub while you were reading.

Do - Donate prosthetic limbs because it is just really fun to have that for sale in a store.
Don't - Donate prosthetic limbs that are still attached and being used by someone that isn't you.

Do - Donate your collectables
Don't - Donate your preserved arachnid collection unless you clearly label the outside of the box with a large warning sign so I don't reach in and pull one out and then freak out. Thank you.

Do - Donate your old VCRs. They don't make them anymore so people buy them quick.
Don't - Donate your old VCR without checking to make sure you didn't leave porno inside.

Do - Donate medical equipment like walkers, wheelchairs, shower chairs, and crutches
Don't - Donate catheters. Just don't. No one will ever go to a Thrift Store and think to themselves, hmm I wonder if they have any used catheters today.

Do - Donate fake flora and greenery for the household. That stuff is pretty expensive brand new.
Don't - Donate preserved flora that is falling apart and shedding.

Do - Donate pet items.
Don't - Donate pets. Or children...unless they are hard workers.

Do - Donate purses
Don't - Check the purses thoroughly before you donate them. It's fun to find money!

Do - Donate most household items.
Don't - Accidentally donate treasures that you will regret letting go of. If you do happen to do that, Don't wait 6 months before coming back to the store to see if we still have it.

Do - Donate
Do - Shop. Someone needs to buy all that stuff that we get. If you donated, that means you have space to get OTHER items.

These tips have been inspired by my other blog.
Donation of the Day

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Random Pinterest Pins

The Random Pinterest Board

Because I made the board title "random stuff" I figured I should share it here on my random blog.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

2013 Resolutions

This year, I'm going to be kinder. If I like or appreciate something about someone, I'm going to tell them right then and there. I'm going to look deeper for less superficial reasons for complimenting someone. If I tell you I like your shoes though, then I really do like them.

I'm going to care less about being alone and care more about the blessings that surround my life in great abundance.

I'm going to hang out with my brother more.

I think those are good resolutions and totally doable. If a goal seems impossible, it's easier to give up on them.

Be happy and be nice to each other. Thanks.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012


I want to share my today with you. It was amazing, stressful, fun, touching, and yummy.

This year, our department did quarterly team building meetings. It is hard to attend those types of meetings because the store needs management supervision most of the time. We went to the first one but were unable to go to the next 2. They brought the meeting to our store for the last one. That was today. They were going to all pitch in and help us out where ever we needed it. My boss and I joked about who would get stuck with bathroom cleaning and hanger sorting. Truthfully, I was a little stressed out about how we were going to keep all those people busy.

So yesterday I get a phone call. We have community partnerships with different organizations. One of my contacts from the school district called me. (They send all their donations to us, mostly clothing, and in turn we will give items to kids that need it.) She had an eagle scout who had done a donation drive. He had gathered over 400 coats, a whole heap of blankets, and boxes of food. They were all brought to our store today about an hour before the service project started. YES! We had something to get people to work on. Now, understand that there is always something to work on at the Thrift Store but it takes a lot of creativity to keep 11 people busy for 3 hours without tripping over each other and stealing my volunteers' work spaces. They had those coats all hung and put out so fast. It was amazing and awesome!

During the day, I had a woman from the homeless shelter bring in a voucher for clothing. She was wearing a smith's plastic grocery bag as a belt. She literally could carry all her belongings in a backpack. She was able to get a coat among other needed essentials. Don't worry, she did get a belt. I did tell her that she made the smith's grocery bag look good though. I had all my winter clothing items priced and put out when it was still 90 degrees. We have to get it done soon or it doesn't get done. Anyway, we were low on coats and THIS week it started to finally feel like winter. It was a much needed donation and it was donated at a very perfect time, when I had people to work on them and get them out fast. Within a couple of hours it was all done. I was so grateful that it worked out so well.

Later that night we had a Christmas party at a lovely home. She showed a beautiful Josh Groban video. Then she shared what she was thankful for about each of us. We all then shared something we were thankful for. It was a lovely evening and Staheli catering provided the delicious food.

I'm thankful that all my belongings don't fit inside a backpack. I'm so thankful to be working in a job that I am able to help people like the ones in the video. I'm grateful that the experiences at my job remind me of how much I have. I'm blessed to be able to help someone, somewhere, somehow with every effort I put forth in my job. Helping homeless people with clothing, jobless people with interview attire, abused women with household items, helping someone find a treasure and a smile, and lower income families with affordable COOL needs and wants. This is why I do what I do. It isn't an easy job, and sometimes it can be heartbreaking. I get to work with some amazing volunteers and I see miracles and good every day. This is why I'm generally an upbeat and positive person. I have so much to be grateful for.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Boss quotes

I decided I needed to start writing down some of the things my boss says. He is hilarious!

  • Did you need the thesaurus to look up different ways to say the word sh*t?
  • Just because it's old, doesn't mean it's worth anything.
  • You can't fire slaves, you can only free them.
  • I have 300 PTO hours saved up, I may just take next month off.
  • In response to how his kids are doing "They're still breathing."
  • When I die, I'm going to have my ashes put in a Fedex package and have all these forwarding addresses so I can travel the world.
  • You should have said Nope We have a double dose of discontent. Thanks for calling.
  • I took a management class on employee appreciation. Thanks for all you do. Consider yourself appreciated.
    • He really does appreciate me, he just likes to be funny.
  • Due to the Festivus pole in the store, I need to request the 23rd off. Otherwise I'll go on strike unless I need to use the bathroom.
Festivus Pole hehe
  • I was going to call him spawn of Satan, but that isn't fair to Satan.
  • I'm going to be famous someday and if you make any money on this, I get dibs.
  • Core purpose: To do as little as possible and still get paid for it.
  • Will you read this and tell me if it sounds too mean, I left out the word a$*hole.
  • He has this middle management philosophy. Middle Management are crap filters. We make the the crap that comes up from the bottom look good to the top and the crap from the top look good to the people at the bottom.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012


I know this amazing girl. She is a high-functioning special needs girl. I don't know the specifics of her disabilities but I do know the specifics of her abilities. She is one of my volunteers where I work. She is 21 and this is her last year in Post High School. That would be scary to think about getting turned out into the big wide world.

This girl loves unconditionally and deeply. She feels emotions a lot more dramatically and she has a really hard time controlling them. She may be unable to. I'm not really sure. I've worked with her for quite a few months and I've learned how to steer her away from negative emotions. I've learned how to interact with her as a boss and a friend at the same time. You can't just tell her what to do and have her be happy to do it. You have to approach it a specific way. I've learned to be kinder and more fun and more tolerant, which has improved a lot of my work relationships. She always asks how I am doing and she always asks me about previous struggles I've been going through. She's made me cookies and brownies to help me feel better when I'm struggling emotionally. She is very in-tune with my moods and sometimes it surprises me how much she thinks about and cares about other people. She is loud, and happy, and joyful, and playful, and loud. :) She is so proud of herself when she accomplishes things and my heart swells for her and with her.

Her mother died about 7 years ago and her grandparents are her legal guardians. She still has times where she cries about a mother that isn't there for her any more. She has had a very hard time dealing with it. Her grandfather is currently dying. He has cancer throughout his body, blood clots in his legs and lung. He is in a lot of pain and it is extremely hard for Chelsey to be around that and see her grandfather hurting and dying. I can't even imagine what she is going through, the girl that feels emotions so dramatically and deeply. The girl that has a lot more hurdles she has to jump over just to do things that come naturally for most people. The girl that always asks how I'm doing and how I'm feeling. I love her and wish I could help her deal with this struggle she is currently going through on top of all her regular struggles that she goes through every    single    day.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Update on my New Year's resolutions

Well...the only one I've actually accomplished is the blog posts. Just not on this blog. I will probably post mostly on this other blog.

Saturday, December 31, 2011

New Years Resolutions

1. Write more blog posts. I have a blog!
2. Stop setting myself up for hopelessly repetitious heart break.
3. Get the courage to move on with my life.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Thrift Store wedding gift ideas

I work at the Hospital Thrift Store.  First of all, I NEVER thought I would end up there.  I also never thought I would actually enjoy working at a place like that.  That's probably why I never thought I would end up there.  I absolutely and almost totally enjoy my job.  There are rough days of course.  I'll give you a very recent example.  It's Monday AND Valentines day.  That is two strikes against a day, especially for someone whose relationship status isn't compatible for that type of holiday.  I get to work to open the store and see that someone has left an after hours donation at our back gate.  At first I was a little bit happy because we haven't had many donations in the last few weeks. HINT HINT! (go clean your house and donate your stuff) I walked over with trepidation though.  Usually those type of donations are crap.  Not in the literal sense luckily.  They use our back gate as a dumping ground because they are too lazy to drive to the dump. They do it when we aren't there because then we can't refuse to take it!  We were the lucky recipients of 2 icky doors, a grossed-out aquarium that hasn't been cleaned since the flood, a few bags of clothes that I was scared to look in, 2 kitchen sinks covered in the red dirt of our beautiful desert, and a toilet also covered in that same dirt which doesn't look quite so beautiful when it is marring the surface of white porcelain.  Other than days like that though, I usually love my job.  The day ended up turning out better than it started.  Now that I have sufficiently veered off onto a tangent that really has nothing to do with the direction I had first intended for this post to go, I will cut across the median and get back on my original thought roadway.

I recently attended the wedding of my best friend. It was awesome! I wish that I had planned their gift better. I should have given myself 2 or 3 months to find exactly what it was that I wanted to give them.  I almost never go out shopping at other stores, which is a good thing because it saves me money, so that means I have to plan my needful purchases and keep a sharp eye out for them when they are donated.  I'm a fan for recycling items, the details of that probably belong in an entirely different blog post though.  I have decided that I need to make a list of things that I should look out for in case I have more friends that decide they need to get married because they fell in love or something.

1. Old fashioned copper jello molds, especially the most common one that happens to be in the shape of a fish.  The reason I think that one is the most common is because it is the most donated one.  Maybe that isn't the reason I see it the most though, maybe it's the most hated one and everyone is trying to get rid of it.  The reason it's donated though is entirely irrelevant.  If you can find a fish one though, it makes the gift even better!  It's quirky and something they aren't likely to get for their wedding.  I would suggest getting a few packets of jello, some raisins, and dried carrots to go with this glorious jello mold.  I would also suggest getting them a gift card for a store that would actually have useful items as well.  That way they won't think you are just crazy and at least they will be able to buy something they need and didn't get at their reception. They can also get a laugh at your gift and quite possibly hang it on the wall and leave it there, or just donate it again to the nearest second hand store.  May I suggest bringing your donations to 76 W. St. George Blvd.  It is a convenient and centralized location in the St. George area.  The profits from this organization also go back to the hospital.  Those profits help pay for needed equipment, grants, scholarships, and other things of that sort.

2. A salad bowl and tongs.  They are quite cheap at a thrift store and then you can crumple up hundred dollar bills and make them look like salad.  Or you can use one dollar bills.  It all depends on your budget and your love for the couple that is getting married.  Sometimes you can find fake fruits and vegetables at thrift stores. They make great accents to your money salad.  Wrap the finished product in some cellophane and you have a really unique and cute gift.

3. A small specialized kitchen appliance.  Sort of like a waffle maker but even more specialized.  We've had quesadilla makers and crepe makers donated.  Those little machines that make grilled cheese sandwiches or mini pie pockets come in frequently as well.  Fondue sets also make regular appearances among our donations.  They are actually a more common wedding gift but getting one at a thrift store will save you a lot of money.  Let's face it, most of those items were probably only used 2 or 3 times.  They are practically new! I think that these gifts are perfect for the couple that has a lot of shelf room that they don't mind filling up with appliances that will get little or no use because their regular pots or pans can do the job just as well.  I would suggest adding a gift card to a useful store to this gift as well for the same reasons that I stated up above in suggestion number 1.

4. Quirky ice cube trays.  The cute ones that make different shaped ice cubes!  Now most young married couples are inexperience with household items.  They will totally dig these trays and then end up never using them because they will get forgotten behind their useful tupperware containers that will be saving all their leftovers in the refrigerator.  I actually saw a useful ice cube tray once though that froze the water into long thin bars.  The customer informed me they were perfect for shoving inside of water bottles.  I know that I've tried to shove those banana shaped ice cubes, the ones your freezer makes for you, into water bottles and it was just a pain.  After they told me what the ice was used for, I was sad that they bought it before I did.

5. Speaking of refrigerators, one of those small ones would make a fun wedding gift.  They can have cold soda or water next to their computers.  Then they don't have to get up to go to the kitchen during their raids pvp battles against Draenei shaman on the lovely world of Azeroth... or something of a similar nature.  Understandably this gift would probably only work for a small demographic.

6. An orange shag couch for their first apartment.  Now this may be a little tricky wrapping and transporting to the reception.  We all need a couch like that in our first apartment though.  Usually you can find one on the street next to someone's garbage can.  They are hoping that the garbage men will have pity on them and haul the couch away.  Or they are hoping that some poor starving college kids will drive by and grab it.  When free roadside couches are at a minimum, you can always check at thrift stores.

7. A storage bin that will fit a Christmas tree.  If you don't clean up your Christmas decorations fast enough and get to the store ON boxing day, there won't be any of those left.  For some reason the Thrift Store I work at saves EVERY single storage bin that is ever donated, even the ones that are falling apart.  I would imagine that some of the other thrift stores in the area aren't quite as attached to those items though.  So many get donated that they are bound to put some on sale at some point.  Storage bins are a great gift and you can get them for next to nothing, if a store decides to part with them, and they are easy to clean up.  They might get the hint that it has been used before if there is black sharpie on the side stating it was Joseph's D&D figure collection "Don't TOUCH".  If the surface is smooth, you can get that off by coloring over it with dry erase marker and then wiping it off.  The clear plastic ones come clean relatively easy.

8. A Hospital Thrift Store Gift certificate.  These work really well for those individuals that shun deodorant/antiperspirant because it is bad for the environment.  They are the ones that were born in the wrong time period and look like they got their clothes from their relatives that lived during the 60s.  They LOVE second hand stores.  That is probably how they get their authentic vintage duds.  They love looking for "antiques" that they can resell on ebay for a hefty profit.  On a side note, I've figured out that the difference between antique and vintage is this.  With an antique, you know the year and you can prove that it's as old as it looks.  With a vintage item, there is no proof that it isn't some modern facsimile of an antique that your great-grandfather probably paid .35 cents for.  Back then that was a lot of money!  They slap vintage at the front of any description so that you can feel better about paying 50 bucks for something that is probably worth 5.

9. Athletic equipment.  When I say this, I do NOT mean that you should get them used protective cups for all their sport needs.  I mean treadmills or stationary bicycles.  I was going to type exercise but I couldn't figure out how to spell it and I wanted to make a joke about athletic equipment.  Spell check works though.

10. A crazy looking floor lamp.  Let's face it, they probably won't be able to buy a nice generic lamp because it is out of their budget.  You can help alleviate their lighting problems by picking up one of the lamps they offer at thrift stores.  The bigger and gaudier the better.  Really you are just helping them out.  They will look at that monstrosity, or monstrosities if you can find a matching set, and be especially motivated to try harder at school/work so that they can upgrade in the future, hopefully the not too distant future.

If you don't think that the bride and groom will appreciate these items to the fullest, you can always go get them something at Target.  Or supplement any of those gifts with a gift card.  Target gift cards can be really cute by the way.  I think that these ideas can give anyone a smile though.  Especially for you, the gift giver, as you imagine the look on their faces when they open up something that has come from a thrift store.