The Hurried Life

Its been a really long time since I rode the 7 train, even longer since riding it at rush hour. But when your parents are in town and the only dentist appointment available is at 8:15am, you have no other option. I used to know exactly where to stand, when to start moving and what move to make to shimmy my behind into the last seat or half seat available while others around you sigh in disappointment knowing they will have to try and sleep while standing during their commute to work.
Here I am, finding myself, swiping my card at the turnstyle, and left for the wolves to devour as I stand in 100 people’s way for 30 seconds deciding if I have time to take the extremely empty local train, or fight with the wolves for the next express train.

7:30, no time for local. Guess I’ll have to risk getting bit. I head to the crowded platform, I pick the most empty space. I was always told to never ride in the last car, but I’m ignoring that today. It has the least amount of people waiting for it.

I think I have a good spot. The crowd should push me in the right direction. They seem a little nice this morning.

We hear an announcement that the next express train will leave from track 2 instead of track M. Like a straight rope being pulled to an opposite side, so the crowd moves to the oposite platform.

Another announcement: a second express train coming into the station on track M. Now, we are left with an option….do you go back or stay where you are? I chose to dash back across. If I’m lucky, I’ll get to be the first one on the train. About half the crowd joins me in that decision.

As the train pulls into the station, you can see the wolves, looking right to left and back again. Their eyes are squinting, lips smacking, nose curling….checking out their competition. Who will be their victim….who will they have to really fight for that last seat after we are all pushed and shoved through a narrow door.

The train pulls up, it pauses before the doors are opened. Everyone takes their place, their position in front of the door. If you’re right in front, you have power, everyone is envious. You are telling everyone “I WILL be the first on this train and therefore, I can sit wherever I want.” Those behind him pout a little, they pray there will be something left when they get in….if they get in. Because they know that the people on the side are smiling inside. It’s really the best spot to be while waiting to pounce an open door.  The people on the side are sneaks. Like snakes, they can just slip in and grab the first one or two seats next to the door without notice. Leaving the second row of people wondering where they came from. How they possibly got into the train before them because clearly they were NOT in front of the door! The third row are guaranteed to have to stand. Fourth row, you’re just praying on that you get in the train at all. But most likely you will because the fifth row of people will just shove you in, making all this effort to get themselves in while in reality, they are just moving those infront of them in.

You might think that being in the fourth row is nice. You know you’re not getting a seat so you don’t have to try, and people behind you will just move you into the train for you. No work to be involved! But, everyone will hate you the entire trip into the city because you are the one with the backpack hanging out the door causing the conductor to repeatedly announce, “stand clear of the closing doors please.” about 10 times. People look for the culprit in their car, find that its you and those wolves are smacking their lips again, ready to attack because each second longer your coat or bag is in the doorway, is a second longer they have to stay in this cramped space to get to work. You find out its you and you frantically wrestle yourself and your belongings free from the doorway, but its not an easy task considering your stuffed into the car like sardines in a can.

Me, today, I got the side spot. I grinned when the car pulled up. The doors open, and I sneak in completely unnoticed. I got a seat in the middle. My favorite. I pull out my phone to type this post as I’m suddenly inspired to write and brag that I still got it. 🙂

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Week 9!

Goodness, I just now realized it’s been a week since I last wrote a post!  Things are just so busy and I’m getting so tired!  I feel like I have a lot on my plate right now that I really need to start using my mobile app to post on the go.  I’m glad that I’m able to get this post out in time though! Here’s my weekly checkup.

Goals as a runner:

1) Run at least 14 miles a week (2 miles a day) for the year.

I got 23 miles in!  It felt so good to feel like I was fully back into the swing of my running after being sick for two weeks.  My half marathon is 3 weeks and I’m getting really excited for it.  I also signed up for the Brooklyn Half Marathon in May. I haven’t been able to do this race in 2 years and it’s one of my favorites! 😀

Personal:
1) Have a business plan in place by June.

I have a tester for my idea.  I’m really excited about it and can’t wait to hear her opinions on this!

Mommy & Housewife:
1) Organize one thing in the house each week for a year.

Yeah…this got put on the back burner this week.  Well, I did clean out the cabinet in the kitchen.  It does look more organized!  My hubby just needs to go to Home Depot to get a replacement part for the shelf. Then, I can finish my plans.

Now that I have more sewing materials, I am in desperate need of some organization!  I’m hoping I can last until my birthday!

2) Clean at least one thing in our home each day.
Yep, right on track here.

3) Finish cross stitching all of our darn stockings!
I completed the husbands stocking and got started on Erin’s!  Now to just stay focused.

With spring around the corner, does anyone else feel more busy and exhausted as well? Only 43 more weeks to go!

The Fabric Monopoly

I live in the largest city in the United States. We have almost anything at our fingertips. There isn’t one thing you can’t find here. (Well, there is, but that is another post) However, when I began my sewing adventure, I realized that fabric stores are really hard to come by around here. There is ONE in the specific area where I live, but it only sells fabrics for Sarees. I did find two stores about 20 minutes away. They are independent/local businesses.  Otherwise known as mom and pop stores. They are priced higher than a big chain I will compare them to later.  The selection of fabric isn’t as great. Rarely do they have sales and no coupons here! So off to Google I go to find that large fabric and craft store chain that is nationally known. To my regret, the closest Joann Fabric and Crafts is in Long Island! A good 40 minute drive away with no traffic! (which there always is in New York) Don’t get me wrong, I like Joann for certain reasons: large selection of fabrics, lots of sales and if you get on their mailing list, you get a ton of coupons! Perfect for a person bit by the sewing bug. Yet, my last two visits have left me a little……displeased.

Once, I went to get materials to make my first hand bag. The help was nice, except for one thing. When I asked for batting, I was given interfacing instead. I didn’t know any better, but my sewing teacher taught me the difference. HUGE DIFFERENCE!  A few days later, I headed to my local fabric store and purchased some batting. After seeing it and feeling it for the first time, I must say, that Joann employee had no idea what she was talking about!

After I finished my handbag, I wanted to make a similar larger one. I didn’t have time for a 40-45 minute drive, so I headed to my local Fabric store, Sew Right. The employees were so helpful! I wanted to add some embellishments onto this bag and she helped me pick

Here is my first handbag!

Here is my first handbag!

out everything I needed and what materials would be best for these additions. When she cut my fabric, she used a rotary cutter to make sure it was cut straight, and when she had just less than a 1/4 yard left of fabric,she gave me that portion for 50% off instead of selling it to someone else as a scrap. It was so nice to have someone take the time to work with me,my ideas,and offer their opinion. I left very happy.

Yesterday, I was in Long Island for our MOPS meeting. I needed some fabric for a project for a friend. And I knew they had that specific fabric whereas my local shop did not. So, off to Joann I go with an almost 2 year old in tow.

Now, normally, Erin is quite good in stores. She’s helpful and patient. But this trip was a different story. “Walk?”, “Cart?”, “Sit?”, “Thread?” She was entertained alright, just not in the helpful way. I finally get my fabrics and bring them over to get cut. NONE of the employees were very friendly. It seemed like their job was the last thing they wanted to be doing that day. They weren’t very nice to my child either. Erin wasn’t in their way at all.  All of them looked like they were way beyond child bearing years, so I’m sure most of them have some grand kids at least. She cut my fabric with barely any words, but when I asked help to find the interfacing I wanted, she said, “No, its over there, find it yourself.” Here I am, on the verge of yelling at my child for not cooperating in a store, trying to be cordial to an employee who is getting PAID to supposedly help me and then refusing to do her job. I’m lugging my purse and a diaper bag around, a cart that doesn’t fit down ANY of their aisles and trying to keep a toodler from tossing out EVERY SINGLE SPOOL OF THREAD FROM THEIR SHELF! I was about to lose it in a not so nice way. I took 1 minute to look on my own. I then came over and said firmly, “I could really use your help finding this. I am trying to keep track of 10 different things while looking at a list and keep my child’s hands to herself. It will get my child and I out of your hair sooner if you just help me.” She came over and did. I half heartedly apologized and explained how very frustrated I was at the situation I was in. She rolled her eyes and said, “I see your frustrated.” The only nice thing about my trip today was that the cashier let me keep my stuff at the counter after paying so I could take my child to the potty.

I’ve always liked and wanted to support local businesses, but when it comes to cost, I usually go for cheaper. From now on, I think I will never step foot in my not so local Joann again.