adventures in craft shopping

(I went to go write this onto tumblr and realized that it was really long, so I deleted it and decided to write about it here)

Jamie and I went to a local craft store the other day. Our area has a handful of craft stores and, hell, even some of the local Walmarts have a decent craft section (not as amazing as they used to be back in the day, but working their way back to it). This particular one I wanted to go to because they have a better fabric section.

Jamie and I went wandering through some aisles, wandered through beads and papercraft sections, the woodworky things and the kidstuff. I found a kid’s dress and pointed out that a) Cricket would look super adorable in it and 2) I could probably make one myself. Jamie agreed on both things (it was one of the dress-up dresses. sequins and tulle. I don’t do sequins as a craft because of childhood and the constant dealing with sequins)

Jamie found a couple things that he wanted to try/play around with, so he grabbed those. I found some yarn on sale that was really pretty and really tempting. But, I reminded myself that I have no room for more yarn and while the stripe-gradient thing was really cool, I have no idea what I’d make with those. I have a skein of one of those stripe-gradient yarns and I haven’t messed with it. I have a plan for it, yes, but I’m not sure how it’ll go. And, I was mainly here for fabric.

Like I said, this particular craft store has a better fabric section. So, off to fabric we went, circumventing the yarn area. We found some fun print fabric that would be cool to use, some glow-in-the-dark fabric that was more expensive than I’m currently willing to pay (I have small projects and I’m cheap. cheap also means more various fabrics)

I’ve been looking, off and on, for a specific fabric for a few years:: white with red polka dots. I’ve found white with pink-and-red or pink-and-purple polka dots, I’ve found white with green-and-blue polka dots, and I’ve found red with white polka dots. White with red polka dots is hard. I had figured I’d have to use red felt, red fabric, or even a red fabric sharpie (which I have all three), but, just in case, I’d like to look.

I found white organza with red polka dots. Score. I can work with the see-through fabric, I have white fabric at home. So I go to the counter to get it cut.


I am ignored by the woman at the counter, who has seen me walk up, and continues working on folding fabric in front of her. Ok, cool, finish up what you’re doing (the retail monkey in me is screaming “acknowledge your customers!”) and I can wait patiently. I work retail, I’m not going to be a dick. I was also raised to be polite and wait patiently despite my grandmother’s best efforts otherwise.

Another woman comes up and another customer just dumps all this fabric onto the counter, joking about finding more stuff (a woman after my own heart. more power to you lady). The employee asks if she has her ticket and calls out a number.

There’s a ticket system? Since when?

There’s no notation to “take a ticket” or “please have numbered ticket ready” or anything like that. The woman who has steadfastly ignored me demands to know if  I have a ticket. I told her: I’m sorry, I didn’t know I needed one. So she calls out another number.

Are you fucking kidding me.

A woman who has grabbed a ticket from a pull-out machine that I had no idea was there because it blends in with the surrounding area hands me her ticket. I told her I could wait, no worries. She insisted I take her ticket and she grabs another. She was super cool and I thanked her and said “Shows how often I’m here, doesn’t it.” and we chuckled a bit.

The woman who has ignored me and gotten mad at me about this whole ticket thing calls out the number and I smile and ask for half a yard please. She unrolls it and I can see where someone just eyeballed it and cut it haphazardly. She measures half a yard, does a cut, and then uses the handy-dandy little pre-made cut area in the counter to cut the fabric. She doesn’t smooth it or even seems to care when it bunches up.

I don’t care, I want my little bit of fabric so I can get out of here. It’ll be enough for what I need.

Without looking at me, she tells me that this fabric is non-refundable.

Really? Really. It’s fabric. It’s cut fabric. Why would I want to return it anyway? I tell her that’s fine, take my ticket and half-assed folded little peice of fabric, and walk away.

We walk away far enough and Jamie can see that I’m a little mad at the whole encounter. I point out that I’m glad I didn’t have a lot of fabrics I wanted cut and that I’m not going to come back for fabric, I’ll just shop online or something. (which sucks because I prefer physical contact with the fabric I want. I want to see it and feel it before I make a decision).

We go up to stand in line and the woman in front of us insists we go ahead of her because she “has so many things” and we have one or two (we had like five but they fit in the palm of Jamie’s hand). The teeny tiny girl in her early 20s was there ringing people out. She’s super nice and even if I look at her name tag I can never remember her name. She always has a smile on her face and is always wonderful. I like her.

We had a better experience with the cashier and the couple of fellow customers than we did when dealing with the fabric people.

As we were halfway across the parking lot, I told Jamie: the longer I work in retail, the more I fucking hate people. Jamie told me it’s because I have higher standards because I work in a retail environment and have higher expectations.

I looked down at the fabric in my hand as I sat down in the car and saw that the red polka dots that I saw in the store are bright neon pink.

Jamie told me it was ok and I told him I can easily fix that. Hey, I’ve got fabric markers, I can do it.



Learn Something New Everyday – January

A couple of years ago, I decided to make a list of one little thing I learned that day and see how long I could get. At the end of this past December, I decided to try it again and see what would happen. The main difference between this time and last time was posting it in month-long chunks instead of doing a 1-5 day update and hope like hell I remembered something. I had also decided to stick with the basic concept: it doesn’t have to be something I go out and search for, it can be extremely mundane (e.g. something about the dogs) or it can be something I just happen to come across (because I do love jumping into some internet rabbit-holes). The only new “rule” is that I either post up the month-chunk on A) the last day of the month or B) the first of the following month.

And here’s that first month-chunk::


1. Andy was on Taboo (the NatGeo series) twice!

2. There really are people who have never read anything by Edgar Allen Poe. This includes “The Raven” (which is pretty much required reading in an English class at some point)

3. I’m better at keeping my opinions to myself when it comes to random people than I was. (beating someone with a book about a pitbull over animal cruelty would ruin the book, and I wanted to finish it)

4. I now know what “Mongo” means. Jamie was joking with Rhonda about something and mentioned that from now on we could just call him “Mongo,” which he meant in the not-so-nice way (mongo being short for mongoloid, the “ok” wording used until the early 1960s)

5. I can’t do double-sided embroidery by hand. Huh.

6. Ugly still will not go outside willingly for anything. Jamie opened the bedroom window without realizing that the screen was up, and left it open for about an hour or so. Ugly never went outside.

7. JoAnn’s Fabrics has 2 packages of buttons in my local store. They are just different sizes of the same type of “kid’s craft buttons!” in large sizes (the buttons, not the packages). If there are other buttons, I have no idea where they’re at and didn’t want to spend an hour looking to see if there were any black anchor buttons to see if I could get a replacement for my pea coat.

8. Palmer’s (the chocolate candy guys) have 2 pittie puppies as part of their puppy collection for the plastic heart tins! (they’ve also gotten an explosion of Thank You!s from pittie lovers, supporters, etc)

9. I have met my friend’s doppleganger. He works at my local Kroger and is a Whovian.

10. Apparently my Doctor Who Tom Baker scarf is nicer than the ThinkGeek one. (this is according to a girl who had to ask me if I made it and informed me that she bought her dad the TG one, but mine looks so much better)

11. Doing eyes and the “bendy bits” to make them move for 30 snakes takes (roughly 3 hours)

12. Our vet said we could give Izzy-butt 3mg of melatonin a day to help fix hair loss. (she’s getting little bald patches on her haunches).

13. According to one of my co-workers, my dogs are “large” breed. (only when looking for sweaters). I found this hilarious.

14. It is possible to make a sweet potato melt. This I wasn’t expecting.

15. I got to learn how to work the register at work! (the thing about this job is you get trained as a cash-monkey last and are told you are not allowed near the registers until you get the training. It’s pretty cool and it was a nice break from being a cash-monkey)

16. “Wapi nyani leo?” means “Where are the baboons today?” in Swahili. (source: )

17. Izzy has traction in the snow! Well, at least better traction than she normally does on the patio or grass.

18. You have to have an Xbox Live account to use Microsoft Points. (even after we double checked and made sure you didn’t need one)

19. Giving a 255-character limit to describe your problem is really hard. The Xbox Live support on their website does this to you. (we have also learned: don’t rent films via Xbox Live because it will take your points and you will not get the film. Pain in the ass)

20. Nose stud retainers are a pain in the ass. At least the one I bought is because the damned thing’s all bendy.

21. Firefly is the copilot when I’m not around. This is adorable.

22. Watching the (new) Battlestar Galactica for the first time (what? I’m a fan of the original), Richard Hatch (Capt. Apollo from the original!) is in this as Tom Zarek. I almost got to meet him when I was a kid (what happened: my dad is a jackass)

23. There is a glass beach in California. It is really pretty and would be really cool to go experience. (source: )

24. Taking a bite of Ghiradelli dark chocolate with caramel and then taking a sip of Angry Orchard (traditional) ends up tasting like how rubbing alcohol smells. It was bizarre and unexpected.

25. The “Prophecy” game looks like a horror-fan’s Candyland. (Prophecy being the 1979 film that I was informed was really bad. I want to watch it)

26. You really can’t make a (tight) U-turn with a 26-ft Uhaul.

27. One of my co-workers (not the one who thinks my dogs are “large breed”) has never heard of Monty Python’s Search for the Holy Grail. She’s never even heard of Monty Python. Doing a shortened explaination of the joke of the Killer Bunny caused her eyes to widen as a look of shock/horror came over her face; her only response was “oh my god, that’s horrible.”

28. “Cure what ails you” is:  a mug with hot water, a “couple spoonfuls” of Country Time Lemonade, 1 shot of vodka, and a spoonful of honey. It tastes like Lemonheads. (source: ) Warning: KUEC is NSFW, especially if you are prone to laughing at inappropriate things (usually an Ursula Vernon story). If you are a fan of Ursula’s Dragonbreath series, do not let a kid under the age of 14 listen to this podcast. Personally, I love KUEC and will say nothing but great things about Kevin and Ursula, but I know there are some people who are out there who are sensitive to things and/or who do not want children of a certain age to hear certain things.

29. There is a syndrome known as “twitchy kitty disease.” (it’s feline hyperethesia syndrome.)

30. You can find the entirety of The Bill Engvall Show on Youtube. I was easily entertained for a while.

31. ThinkGeek has a plush chestburster that is almost as long as I am tall. It is 48″ and I am 62″ (5’2″)