Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Old House Lust... And Lets Talk About Gentrification

There isn't a day that goes by that I don't Miss my Old Historic Home and long to go back... I'm still very Emotional about it.  I Wish I did not have to Sell it and could have been the one to fully Restore it and live out my Life there happily ever after.  But it was not meant to be, my Head knows it even tho' my Heart aches for having let it go... and so, tho' New Villa Boheme' is Lovely and Grandiose and Luxurious by comparison, I still have Old House Lust now.   Every once in a while I walk into an Old House and wistfully Lust and Imagine it is mine.  I know that should the Ideal one become available and affordable I'd be flipping my Luxury Villa in a heartbeat if The Man were on board to take another leap of Faith with me?  *LOL*

There's just something about Old Homes that draws me, regardless of condition or of habitability of them, it is no deterrent.  Most would see tired wrecks of places that have seen better days, I always see the Possibilities of bringing them back to Life and Enjoying their Unique Essence and Character, which Modern tract Homes just lack.  I don't care what anyone says, nothing in Subdivision Hell, even the Luxury Custom Homes, has the same Energy or Appeal for me.  There is a certain detachment for me in any New Home no matter how much of a Wow factor the builder attempted to infuse into it.   Yes, Lovely... Yawn... I'm just not easily Impressed with new stuff tho' I might Admire the features, this Home has spectacular details... BUT... I'd rather not Live in a Newer Home... so there.

I'm doing it but it is rather under Protest really, I'm Grateful for a Lovely Home, don't get me wrong I really am.  But my Heart is still back at my Old Homestead, which I agonized about having to give up and Miss terribly, I don't Love this Luxury Home as much, I just don't.  It's like having to give up that Beloved Old pair of Jeans or Shoes that feel and fit you just Right.  Because really they're falling apart and you can't fix them... maybe somebody can... but you know it's not YOU... and so reluctantly you have to let them go and buy the New ones and tolerate them.  They may look way better than the Old ones, and have way more buzzers and bells actually... but Truth be told you were Attached to the Old worn out ones and you would rather have been able to keep them, perhaps indefinitely.

Flipping the Old Homestead did exactly what it was Purposed to do in the Sale of it... pay off debts and medical bills that had piled up over years of The Man's lengthy illness and rehabilitation... and in the raising of Grandchildren on a fixed income.   It afforded me the Right to Adopt my Grandchildren since it could never have passed the stringent Adoption Standards for a Home, even tho' they'd lived there all their lives since birth!  So the 'new' Standards to Adopt opposed to being a Kinship Placement thru Child Protective Services were just silly and a damned beaurocrazy irony, but it had to be done, they were more than worth it.  I'd of given up anything to ensure they stayed with us no matter how ridiculous the Laundry List of 'Requirements' was to Qualify as an Adoptive Single Parent Grandmother!!!  Yeah, that part was ridiculous too, as if suddenly The Man didn't exist or Qualify as a Parental figure and sole financial Provider due to his Disability!   For Fifteen years he had... but not for Adoption... the Standard shifts.


And of coarse there was that other pesky detail, how Older Neighborhoods tend to become blighted when the Criminal element and Transient factor explodes within those aging Communities.  At some point you get tired of Victimization by Predatory types that are the scourge of any Community they occupy!  Let us not forget you're only a few people away from any Community having that situation and making it less desirable to stay than to flee and find Safer and more acceptable surroundings.   It's not that Subdivision Hell is immune to it just because it's not necessarily Urban... let some Tweakers, Crackheads, other Substance Abusing Addicts, Vandals, Thieves, Felons or Slim Shady's move next door and start victimizing that Community, bringing all their baggage with them, and any Neighborhood will start to circle the drain and decline!   I can drive thru many a Hood that used to be decent and presentable, nice places to live once... but it ain't no more!  And if you have a Beloved Home that becomes smack dab in the midst of Urban Decay or Rural Blight, well, cut your losses early, it's often all you can do.


Urban renewal happens, I've seen the reverse effect when an area Trends, but mostly and generally it takes years to reverse the adverse effects.  They have to develop and improve it to the point where most now cannot possibly afford it to ensure it improves sufficiently and stays that way... appealing to and conforming to middle class or wealthy tastes.  Gentrification works, once a developer is building multi-million dollar abodes, well, it has a way of forcing anything and anyone undesirable out.  I have a Love-Hate relationship with Gentrification actually... on the one hand I want Urban Blight to be fought against and Older Neighborhoods to become Safe and renovated Communities again, breathing New Life into them.  They have some of the most Lovely Historic areas and Character... it's the only way to Save it and bring people back who bailed when it hit the skids.

But not everyone who can't afford The Dream is bad or criminal or even part of the Problem of Urban Decay and Rural Blight.   I've been Poor, I've even been Homeless once, I was the same person I am now... same Ethics and Morals, same Pride of Ownership of whatever I did still have, same Character and Code of Living Well, same Desire of getting along and playing well with others.   So income or lack thereof does not necessarily denote Character or Ethics and Morals or lack thereof.  Fact is, everyone needs a place to live that is Safe and has a sense of Community, where Families can be raised, so it's a delicate balancing act, akin to high-wire walking.   If someone IS a mess you can get them out of the mess, but if the mess is still IN them, well, they tend to just fall right back into it.  

So it's more a Social Issue dealing Successfully with those who have become a scourge to their Communities and Society in general... and who become predatory or destroy everything around them.   I don't have the answers to that dilemma, I Hope one day it can be found tho'... to Restore people as well as Neighborhoods and Communities that have declined.   Right now most Gentrification drives out anyone who can't now afford to live in a place that becomes a Hot Commodity and Investors or Developers dump Millions into and so more affluent residents move into and change.   The change can be positive in so many ways, except for it doesn't necessarily play out fairly to Good People who just happen to have modest means and get driven out too.

Giving back to Communities isn't always a priority... seeing a Community as more than a Commodity isn't either.   Spreading the wealth equitably isn't ever a priority... that's why Developers and Investors can be rather ruthless in their Process and exploit whatever and whoever they can strong arm and land grab from.   Trust and Believe I spent over two years dealing with that Reality in the Sale of the Old Homestead!   I accepted less so as NOT to have my Historic Home Sold to an Investor or Developer and razed rather than restored... by Greedy Developers who just wanted to throw up Low Income High Density Housing since they felt the area warranted only that kind of development to get the most bang for their buck.  I Sold lower to a Restoration Specialist with a shared Love Of Old and modest means, I like what he's doing and the Vision and Love for Community he has, it was a good call even tho' it didn't net me top dollar to do the Right thing.

This Old Jewel I'm Sharing in Today's Post is only probably still existing because a Successful Business grew up around it, turned it Commercial and used the Old Adobe Ranch House and Grounds to Create a Unique Plant Nursery rather than tearing it down.   Most Businesses do not do that anymore, not necessarily cost effective to.  Tho' some Urban Renewal Projects are recognizing the Character and mixed Use of Historic Buildings that can be repurposed successfully and which have a draw BECAUSE of that Rare Character and Nostalgic element they impart to the Business.   Some Historic Commercial properties have been repurposed into Residential Lofts and such, which I would LOVE to own one of those lemme tell ya!   A Loft space from a converted Old Brick Warehouse from the turn of the Century is my Dreamscape to live in and Style!!!

But the Organic Graceful soft lines of this Aging Adobe Ranch House, which is a blend of Contemporary Art Deco and Classic Pueblo Revival Style is so Unique and Interesting that I Love everything about it!!!   I would guess it's Era to be Circa 1920-1930 and it is Huge so a rather affluent Rancher or Farmer probably built it way back when.   The rounded corners of every wall and soft Archways are like a Womb in the sensation of being inside of it.   Instead of a Lovely Tomb, which is how I often Feel inside of a Modern Lovely Home in Subdivision Hell... any of them.  Perhaps that's just me but it's how I Feel and I'm keeping it 100% about why aversion runs so deep to New Builds and I just can't seem to get Attached, even when I really, really try to accept them as Home.


The ceilings all had these smooth multi dimensional layers with lighting hidden inside, very Mod for it's day actually... that was quite Visionary and Futuristic for it's Era!   I Wonder who the Architect was and how such a Stylization that was so different was received back in the Twenties or Thirties?   Perhaps it was Owner built, like many Rural properties in the Wild West were, like our Old Homestead was, and they just went with what they liked and had on hand. Those are the Real Deal OOAK Properties that are Funky Cool and particularly Appeal to my Artistic and Creative Eye and Quirky Style Sensibilities.  *Smiles*  The more Unusual and Eccentric, the better in my Book!  *Ha ha ha*

Sure, the Traditional exists right alongside the Unusual Art Deco elements, the Niches where I know I'd place my Antique Spiritual Santos figures I've Collected.   I do like that New Villa Boheme' had enormous Niches and Archways everywhere... it's the Details like that which made me convinced I could Live in a Modern Home that replaced my Beloved Old Homestead.   I do Love this Home's attention to Classic Villa Details, I'm just not forming the Attachment I had expected to when you finally get an alleged Luxury Dream Home.  I should Feel way more Emotional Attachment to it all than I do... so it's a Weird sensation of Loving it and yet keeping detached and not even being able to force an Attachment that wouldn't make me ever want to move again!

The Man and I actually drive around Imagining where we'd Move to... so I just Feel as tho' we eventually will if the possibility presents itself.   And that too is different since at the Old Homestead I never could Imagine myself leaving it... and thus it was Agonizing and Emotional to HAVE to... having that Feeling of being forced out of it and to be moved along, even to Greener Pastures that certainly were a huge Improvement of Quality of Life.   I asked the Kiddos the other day if they Love their New Home?  Both admit they Miss our Old one and every chance we get they want to drive by it and be dropped off in the Old Neighborhood to be with what was Familiar and fully Embraced us as part of the Community.   They look longingly of where we once lived and a part of us is still there and still longs to be there, rather than here.

A Friend who Appreciates such Connections as those, even with run down Old Houses... asked me if... in the Future... if the Neighborhood revitalized enough and the Old Homestead came up for Sale again... would I repurchase it?  I Confessed I definitely would... I doubt I'd even hesitate... if Crime subsided and the Community stabilized from what has been wrought against it in recent years.  Because for many years it WAS an Ideal place to Live and raise our Family... I had no real complaints or concerns about that.  Even tho' it was considered The Hood by many, just because the demographic was Blue Collar or Lower Income hard working folks, and considered a Barrio.. but we Liked it and we fit in just fine... better than here!

Sorry, I can't wait to move out of here Gramma the Young Prince had confided to me, I don't like it here in this area even tho' the House is very bougie... and impressive.  I don't like the pretentious vibe nor the subtle racism I've experienced since moving here, I Feel like we don't 'Belong' here and so I can't wait to get out he lamented.  I felt so bad, like I'd made a wrong decision to come here when I heard those words and that sentiment... which I tended to Share with him actually.  It has nothing to do with what's a Nicer surrounding you see... a surrounding can be quite Lovely and just not be a right fit and so then you Feel misfit there.   If there is no sense of Community or of 'Belonging' then you just can easily Move On, there's nothing holding you there.   There is not much, if anything, holding us here or making us Feel all that Welcome I suppose and perhaps why we Feel so restless about staying put?

So the Old House Lust just makes it more Tempting to keep Seeking... and see what turns up in the Future?  Once all the Grandkids are Graduated then I won't have to worry about the Quality of the School Systems... tho' with Special Needs Kiddos I've found it hardly matters really.   The same opportunities just won't exist for them anyway so it's been rather a waste to have put any Eggs in that Basket!   In fact, Good School Ratings often make it so they don't want any Misfit Kiddos dragging down their spectacular Ratings so they tend to want to pawn them off and dump them almost anywhere "alternative", using the ruse it will be better for everyone concerned... which is discouraging and I was naive not to expect I suppose!!!

So honestly I can't wait to get thru the School Years with The G-Kid Force and be done with all that Drama with IEP's and the constant battles to get them educated and not have their Rights trampled just because they have Disabilities and Special Needs in the Classroom!   It's too exhausting and I suppose I'm too Old now to tolerate much resistance without calling folks out and being blunt and very much to the point... much to the chagrin of School Administrators.  *Smiles*   I don't know who they Hate seeing coming more... The Force or their Gramma Advocating for them?   Too bad... we won't just go away because it inconveniences anyone that they have Disabilities with no Cure or all the tidy little answers on how to deal with it inside or outside of the Classroom!   

I've been procrastinating in fact on putting in Improvements to this Home since I'm not certain how long I intend to even stay?   So I've waffled on things I normally would do to Improve where I Love and am Living.   I know I'm doing this... so every time I see something way Cool that would improve New Villa Boheme' my first inclination is, yeah, but could I take it WITH us when we LEAVE?!?   If the answer to that question is No, it would be a permanent Improvement and fixture to the Property, even if it would enhance Value, I typically Pass on the Investment.   I liked this Antique Door... we Need a Door or Gate to close off the Front Courtyard from the Street... I'm leaning towards an Old Cool Door rather than a Wrought Iron Gate like everyone else has. 

I'm Feeling very Insulated and Closed-Off anyway so why not install a Door... a big Ole' Solid one nobody can even see past to the Inner Sanctums of our Home and even the exterior Living Spaces?   It's not arched so it wouldn't fit properly, that was justification enough not to Invest in it... and I keep Putting Off even pricing a Fancy Iron Gate like everyone else has, even tho' they look purdy!  *LOL*   I just Feel it's so very Stepford to do what everyone else is doing, and Conforming is certainly not in my Nature, if I can get anything different past the HOA's Approval I'm going for it!  *Bwahahahahaha!*  BTW: Still Hate HOA's even tho' ours happens to be a very Nice one that doesn't harass the shit out of people or abuse their Authority over the Community at large... Thank God, that would drive me out quicker than hopping in a Race Car!

Oppressive HOA's are the Devil... those under the oppression of Bad HOA's I feel sorry in my Heart for actually.   I've known people to take a hit on the Sale of their Dream Homes to get out from under an HOA that is out of control and trying to control everything and anything.  When I was in my Corporate Life as an AVP of a Bank and Managing Collections and Foreclosure of Real Property, I had to Foreclose on numerous Homeowners whose HOA's had created such needless litigation or inflated fees that it caused people to default on their Loans due to the financial burdens it placed upon them.   Yes, the upside is they are charged with keeping a Community presentable and most do the job properly to protect property Values and Care for Common Areas, but it depends who they elect and what kind of abuse of Power that 'Management Team' might exert?

Like almost anything, WHO you are Dealing with has the greatest impact upon what you're gonna have to Deal with?!?   And right now I'm rather on an Old Hippie Anti-Establishment binge in case you couldn't tell?!   *Winks*  Do I think I'll put some years into getting New Villa Boheme' JUST SO and then pick up and just leave and have to start over AGAIN?   I really don't know for certain, mebbe I'll be too tired and lazy to... mebbe in Time I won't even want to bother to?  Mebbe the area will Improve enough it'll just be so Convenient finally that I'll stay put, who knows?   Mebbe infrastructure and the City will surround us in a Good way and this won't be out in the middle of nowhere forever?  I just know Wanderlust RIGHT NOW is making me so restless I can hardly stand it sometimes!

I know that Old House Lust and the longing for the City is tugging at me constantly... where there's things to do and people to Socialize with!  I Feel much more Alive in the City and not so much just Existing within pretty Walls, like a Pretty Tomb out in the middle of the Desert.  Hey, the Pyramids are way Cool and structurally Awesome, but I wouldn't wanna Live in them, you know?!? *Smiles*   I do like a certain amount of Solitude and Natural Splendor... so that Adjustment has been rather Enjoyable... not so much all the Commuting to get even a gallon of Milk when we're out and the nearest Grocery Store, Restaurant or Gas Station might as well be on another Planet!   I prefer a Good Walk Score... I really do... I had taken for Granted our Ideal Walk Score from Old Bohemian Valhalla in fact!!!

We really were near EVERYTHING weren't we, the Kiddos lamented when we drove past The Old House the other day and visited Friends in the Old Hood.  Lately I've had The Young Prince ask to leave with me for Work so I can drop him off in the Old Neighborhood to hang out and then he walks to our Antique Mall from there when my Night Shift is over.   With a few bucks in his pocket for meals and refreshments he's Happy as a Clam at High Tide... here he's mostly Miserable and one day blends into the next.   I have things to do, places to go, people to spend time with THERE he says... Yes, in The Hood... a most unlikely place to be Homesick for we thought... until now.

Old Neighbors rush up genuinely Happy to see us again, telling us how much they've Missed us all and asking how everyone is with Sincerity!   We've Missed them all too... I languish and visit with them all, as do the Grands.   Here I'm not entirely sure they'd piss on you if you were on Fire, it might be too much involvement?  I hear similar lamentations from everyone I know whose moved from an Older Community that was close to a newer Subdivision, it's the Norm they tell me... it's the direction Society is going.  I think that's rather tragic to consider, but I can Believe it... now that I've Experienced both 'Worlds'.

Being the frustrated Writer than I am it is therapeutic to just write down words, Feelings and frustrations sometimes.   Not so much to be Negative, but just to dump it all out there into the Universe where it can disperse and purge it so that toxins are released and Positive Energy remains.   So if you don't like a whiny ranting Post I probably should have made a Disclaimer at the beginning I suppose?   *LOL*   I'm not inclined to stay Negative tho' I do sometimes Feel Negative for whatever reasons have created that heaviness that I abhor and want to shake off!   So this is rather a shaking off kinda Post Today, coupled with Lovely Imagery from the Plant Nursery of Whitfill in Glendale and their Lovely Old Historic Home on the Property!

They have a lot of Good Stuff even if you don't Need Plants so I'd recommend going there to find some Cool Decor and Antiques as well.   I just Love the Atmosphere of the place, it's one of my Go To places when I'm Feeling like a Need for Historic Home Ambiance and Nature combined in an Idyllic setting!  This day I miraculously didn't buy a Plant or anything Cool even tho' so much of it was mighty Tempting!  *Gasp!!!*

Yeah, Believe it or not, the majority of the time I go out I don't buy anything at all... and almost all of the time I have no Intention to, so even when I do buy something it was Serendipity.   I don't NEED anything you see, I have absolutely everything in Life that I Need... it's Nice to come to that Season of Life where you can actually claim that!!!  In fact, most of what I have I don't NEED, I just WANT it and for now I'll hold onto it because I still Want to... not that I Need to... and that is quite Liberating!!!  I think I could fit every actual NEED into the back of my Truck like the Old Days of my Didi Kai Nomadic Living, so everything else is just a Want... a Like... or a Love.

The Nursery has a lot of Exotic Birds too... being around Nature reminds me all the more of what I don't really Need... so I've been spending more time around Nature on Purpose.    And realizing that in even a worse case scenario, all I'd really Need is a Simple Home no matter how humble, with regular Meals, with Good Friends and Family around me.  That's all we actually NEED... no more than that... the rest is just Window Dressing... and I certainly Like Window Dressing *Wink* but it's not Necessary.

In fact I view an abundance of Window Dressing and the having of the Good Stuff to be more of an Investment to utilize later on if I want more Options in the realm of say... ready Cash and what that can do for ya.  *Ha ha ha ha ha*   It's been rather more of my Retirement Plan since as a Retired Banker I don't like the direction other Investments have gone the way of, dismal returns and all that, with the exception of Real Estate perhaps, if you bought low and well, then Sold high.   So New Villa Boheme' is viewed kinda the same to me, a handy Investment Tool... wrapped up in being a Home... for now.

And tho' I Feel rather Conflicted about it all sometimes, Writing about it helps when I just Need to and this is my Blog so I can Write about whatever I want... complete Freedom!   Nobody has to Agree nor Disagree with the Opinions expressed in this Post... my ode to a Disclaimer... ya like it?  *winks*  Whether you Agree or just Agree to Disagree it's all Good.  If you too are a frustrated Writer and Feel the Need to weigh in about any or all of the Topics randomly discussed Today, feel Free.  Just don't get snarky about it coz I'm rather Testy lately and might come slightly unhinged in your direction.  Just because I'm Fragile at the moment Emotionally... it's been a Trying Week and I'm trying mightily not to be a ratchet bitch so don't send me over the edge to go There, OK?! *Bwahahahahaha!*

I still Need a Vacay... I will not however be getting one... I'll be going instead to Sky Zone to sit for two hours on Wednesday with The Princess and pay a fair amount of money to be bored out of my Mind and watch her bounce around merrily... for two long excruciating Hours... Yawn!  *LOL*  The Young Prince said he couldn't handle that, so just buy me a Video Game and some Batteries please in lieu of a Vacay Gramma... I'm Good he says, I don't Need anything else... that Kid and his Negotiating just cracks me up!!!  *Bwahahahahahaha!!!*  He also added that he thinks mebbe I should indulge in some more Retail Therapy after taking one for the Team at Sky Zone to be with his Sister!  Sky Zone is not going to be a substitute for a day at the Beach for you Gramma he deadpans!  *LMAO*

Well, if that ain't the freakin' understatement of the Century... yeah, I doubt I'll be having any Fun at Sky Zone... we could place money on that bet as being a Sure thing!!!   But the sacrifices we'll make for the Little Ones, huh?   She is totally Jazzed... since Monday got rained out for the Water Park, which would have cost a fortune, literally I'm not exaggerating.  And sitting in the Hot Sun watching her splash around for a whole day is far less Torture than sitting inside air conditioned comfort at Sky Zone and paying far less for the boredom!  And I probably won't fry to a crisp or cause Trauma by wearing a bathing suit {some things you just can't unsee... you know?}... and Sky Zone has a two hour time limit to it's Torture for the Chaperone Grandparent!  *Winks*

And Hopefully she'll tucker herself clean out bouncing around on the Trampolines for two hours, one can only Hope?   The Young Prince wryly with his Gallows Humor suggests perhaps I should join her on the Trampolines and risk breaking a hip?  *LMAO*   Shut Up, if she hears that she might think that is an actual Option and risk I'm willing to take dammit!  Shhhhhhhhhhhh!   Just so you know my History with Trampolines, when I was quite Young {about Nine years old} and very Acrobatic, I once got a compound fracture of my arm on a Trampoline!  True Story, it was quite Gruesome and took Years to properly Heal... so I ain't Young nor Acrobatic now and so it seems like an even more Stupid Idea to get back on one!!!  *Ha ha ha*  Truth be told I'll be a bundle of nerves with her bouncing around on them for two hours since she's not the most Graceful Creature with her lanky self!

She can be rather like a Wounded Flamingo when she's doing Acrobatic Stuff or Running, she's all legs and no coordination that Kid!   Which is why we go thru so many Band-aides around here!   But she envisions herself as an Olympic Quality Gymnast and Fancy Dancer, so what can I say?   *Smiles*  Actually she Dances quite well, mebbe she should stick to that Natural Talent and forget the rest?!   But she's Eleven and so there are no limits to her Imagination of what she can be or do and I'm Okay with that.   Grandpa will not be going... in fact, he's rather Glad the Vacay Plans are nixed and he can sit comfortably in his Recliner with his Big Screen TV watching endless reruns of shows he doesn't remember watching several times already!   Like about five times... already... which is about as entertaining to me as going to Sky Zone with her!  In lieu of my long awaited Vacay on the Beach... hardly any Comparison!!!  Humnnnn... I Wonder if  they have Drinks with little Umbrellas served by Stud Muffins at Sky Zone?!!!  And I'm not kidding!!!  *LOL*


Blessings from the Arizona Desert... Dawn... The Bohemian

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

The Dress Form Motherlode

It's no Secret that I Love Collecting Dress Forms, in particular the Antique ones when I can find them at a Bargain.  But I'll pick up the Vintage or Interesting Modern ones too if they're a Steal.  Those I'll Display until I want to Fund an Upgraded one, then put the Newer ones up for Sale to pay for the Upgrade.  So here's my recent Trifecta of Scoring The Dress Form Motherlode on recent trawling for Found Treasure outings! {Ignore misc. crap on floor that hasn't found it's 'place' yet... LOL} 

Actually, counting this one I Scored at The Sweet during this recent Event, it's Four Lovelies I've added to the Bohemian Valhalla Dress Form Posse of Gals!  *Smiles*   I seem to be a Cheap Dress Form Magnet lately, I've done that in the Past with Persian Rugs, now it seems to be Dress Forms and I'll gladly Roll with it so long as they keep showing up at Bargain Prices well within Budget!   Because Vintage and Antique Dress Forms are typically spendy... way out of my paltry Budget limits I impose on myself so usually I have to Pass.  So this has been rather exhilarating to Score the Discount Gals unexpectedly on my Junquing Adventures!

So now back to the latest two back to back Scores that gave me a Pulse Racing Rush they were so Cheap... we'd be speaking of the Gals on the Stands.  One is Victorian Era and tho' the other is a Modern Form she was so ridiculously priced and visually Interesting that I got her anyway as a potential Flip later on should I need Antique Dress Form Funding.   Shhhhhh, don't tell her she could be Sold Off to pay for an Older Model one day, it'll be our Secret.  *Winks*

So the Victorian Gal was in my Friend Michael's Booth, Fresh from the Farm since he Finds the Coolest Stuff and I'd love to be a stowaway on one of his Picks coz he's the Male version of Me when it comes to what we mutually Admire and like to buy!  *LOL*  He could probably tell me where his Honey Holes are but then he'd have to kill me, right?  *Smiles*   He also has the most Amazing Prices on his Merchandise, she was had for just over Forty Bucks!!!  *Gasp!!!*  Nope, that's not a typo, barely over $40 mere Dollars for an Amazing 1800's Beauty on a very Unusual Wooden Stand, never seen one like it in fact... AND it was Ornate and my Fav Hue... Black!!!  {Insert Heavenly Hosts Singing Madly}

I wasn't even Intending to purchase yet another Dress Form but I peeled off that Forty Bucks and some Change so quick it was like a Bruce Lee or Jet Li Move... so I was like one of the Ninja Lee-Li's!  *LOL*  She barely fit across the back seat of the Truck, she's a Tall Gal and it was storming, so Thankfully she was able to be wedged inside on the way Home after my Shift Sunday Night.   One of the Perils slash Pluses of Working in an Antique Mall is you see the Good Stuff coming in often and can usually get first dibs on some of it.   I also know which Vendors more often Source My Style of Treasures, so it's like having my own A-Team of Pickers when I can't be everywhere... or anywhere... more likely the latter lately.  *Le Sigh*

I am still marveling at this Unusual Wooden Stand on her with the little stabilizing feet and loads of Patina wear from her Age and possibly Commercial Use.   You can often tell the Victorian Dress Form Gals by their 17th and 18th Century Breastoration before the advent of Bras and where the Bosoms look so bound and Matronly with little Shape or Sex Appeal.  I don't know if it was a Victorian Modesty Practice or these Gals just didn't Feel Sexy-All-The-Time so wanted to keep the Victorian Dudes at bay when fully dressed?  *LOL*  It was certainly not an Era of Celebrating the Female Form IMO.

via: Pinterest

The nearest to the type of Gal she is with the type of Wooden Stand she's on I've found online was this Image, so I think she'd look Awesome in a Victorian Corset if I were to ever Score one?   Can one ever have too many Antique Dress Forms, I think not... and so anytime they can be had for a Bargain, they're coming Home with me.   In answer to The G-Kid Force query, there is no Saturation Point for Cheap Antique Dress Form gathering slash Hoarding.  *Ha ha ha*  Besides, the Retail Price of most is well over the $300-$400 range now so that's part of your Inheritance now Kiddos and a better Return on your Investment than any Banks are offering!   So pay attention Grasshoppers and listen to Kung Fu Gramma's Sage Advice about making money on your Buys!

And even on the Modern Gals, if they look Pleasing enough, there is money to be had.  Especially when you Score one for under Ten Bucks... like this Black Brocade Material Gal mounted upon a Shabby Chic Style Stand!!!  *Gasp!!!*  Yep, I got her on Senior Discount Day whilst Goodwill Hunting so she was 25% off the already ridiculously low price... Booyah!!!   I couldn't throw her in the cart quick enough and make her part of my Haul, which was good that day and mostly for re-sale.

Some Lady rudely gawks way too long inside my cart at my cache of Fab Scores of the day... standing uncomfortably way too close for a Stranger... and says in an ambiguous tone, "I ALMOST bought her..."   I wanted to respond, "She who hesitates is Lost...", but I wanted to be Kind so I just smiled and said, "I don't ALMOST buy anything that's an obvious Bargain!"   Okay, so perhaps that wasn't so Kind and rather Snarky or Snipish and more than a little Passive Agressive, but it just fell out of my mouth.  Hey, she Initiated and her intrusive proximity, tone and nosiness was rather Creeping me out, so I didn't necessarily want her to go away Mad or regretting her hesitancy of walking away from an obvious Score she Passed on, just Go Away!   You snoozed, you Lost, now Be Gone!   *LOL*

Now, in case you think that may have been too harsh of me, lemme let you in on a Known Fact in Circles that 'Pick' and go on The Thrill Of The Hunt to make Bank.   There are the Nice Ones that you can Befriend and have each other's Backs... and then there are the ones you Can't Trust and are a rather Ruthless Bunch.  I've learned after Years of doing this to discern the difference, it's become like a Picker Radar of sorts.  I have many Pickin' Comrades that are part of My Tribe and are of the Nicer Variety that watch each other's Backs even tho' we're all eeking out an Existence doing this.  They are the Salt of the Earth and Good Peeps to have in your Corner, we look out for each other and have an Ethical Code of Picker Etiquette about what we do and how we go about doing it!

 But the other Type, those of the Backstabber, Ruthless, Untrustworthy Tribe of Pickers, keep your Eye on them, don't be Foolish enough to Trust them and don't let them near your Cache... they are Predatory.  They would defensively go for any Treasure like they were in the damned Super Bowl trying to Win and they'd trample over and elbow Old Ladies and Little Kids out of the way to get to it first!  That's no exaggeration by the way, and whenever they've foolishly elbowed me or tried to trample over my Grandkids, we have an immediate 'Situation' and Trust and Believe they will keep their distance after that!  *LOL*

Yeah, I can go all Hood on that Variety in a heartbeat!  *Winks*  That Lady struck me instantly as part of That Variety, which I have no Time nor Patience for and intentionally keep at arm's length, don't wanna know 'em.  Don't even approach me with their disingenuous small talk and eyeballing what I've Scored like a ravenous Shark circling a docile Seal!  *Smiles*  Can you only tell that Rude, Obnoxious people without any Social Etiquette or Boundaries are a pet peeve of mine and I have Zero Tolerance for them?  *Bwahahahahaha!* 

I Confess that it Tests the Grace of my preferred Zen Existence to be at Peace with everyone and strains my Christian Witness to be approached by one actually!   Hey, I'm still a Work In Progress... what can I say?  *Ha ha ha*  Ohmmmmm...   I'm at least on my Path to Enlightenment on how best to co-exist even with the Unlovely amongst us and exercise greater Tolerance towards them.  And I was actually Proud of myself for briefly responding in few Words with a Smile and Moving On with my day without Annoyance.  Besides, I'd reached Dress Form Valhalla, hadn't I, so I could be equanimous couldn't I?  *Winks*  BTW: My Dread Journey is going along Splendidly and I'm still absolutely Lovin' it... so above is a pix of two Months into it and they're not too Crazy in their Maturity Process... Smiles!  I am now certain I was meant to have Dreadlocks, shouldda had them all my life!



Blessings from the Arizona Desert... Dawn... The Bohemian

A life touched by God always ends in touching others. - Erwin McManus

I will love the light for it shows me the way, yet I will endure the darkness for it shows me the stars. - Og Mandino (1923-1996)

For creativity to flourish one should try to look at everything as though it were being seen for the first or the last time. - Quote from "A Thousand Paths To Creativity" by David Baird

Is what I'm about to say an improvement on silence? ~ Galen Pearl