It’s absolutely gorgeous outside right now.  The temp got down in the 50’s last night – my favorite kind of weather.  A high in the 70’s today … a slight warming trend for a couple of days, but then I think we’ll be experiencing more of the nice weather of the last 48 hours.  I hope so, anyway.  I am a much more pleasant person when I’m not hot!

Will be running up to Houston shortly – we had a cellular shade installation on Saturday and two of the twelve shades were damaged in shipping.  One had a dented headrail and another had a cracked end-cap, so I’ll have to return them for either repair or replacement.  It’s a bit of an inconvenience having to drive up to Houston, and also because the client lives south of us in Matagorda, which is NOT around the corner. 

I’m having another quality control challenge with a different job, too.  I recently installed 14 blinds in a house down in Bay City.  Everything looked good, but not three days after we left, one of the tilters on a blind broke.  We went down, looked at the situation and realized that the gear in the tilter had cracked.  It was made of plastic – not metal, as we have been used to in the past.  We happened to have a blind at the house that we thought we could harvest the part from – easy fix, no?  Before we could make arrangements to go back to switch out the parts, ANOTHER one of their blinds broke.

So I contacted the manufacturer and told them that obviously it was a quality issue with this part and they needed to go down and switch out the tilters on all 14 blinds, because that should be covered by their warranty.  They’ve agreed to do so, but at THEIR convenience.  Which annoys me like nobody’s business because my client paid good money for those blinds and they should work!  And they should not have to wait weeks for it to be “convenient” for the manufacturer.  My most recent communication with the manufacturer is that they will handle the repairs in a timely manner.  If they do not, I will order quality parts from another source and go do it myself.  Because I’m not a trained blind tech, it’s going to take me a lot longer.  And I told them that I will deduct the cost of the replacement parts, plus a reasonable amount for my travel, time and labor from the balance I still owe on the blinds.  You see, I’ve not paid the balance due (about $500) because as far as I’m concerned, they haven’t finished the job (making sure the blinds are in acceptable working condition).

One thing you can be sure of – I will not be ordering any additional products from this company.

When we were down Matagorda/Bay City way on Saturday, we discovered that Bay City does a “Market Days” event the third Saturday of each month.  It is so awesome – all around the courthouse square, the city has set up booths for vendors to sell their wares.  There are the usual “junky junk” hawkers with stuff straight off the boat from China, and the direct sales folks with their BeautiControl and Tupperware … and then the craftsmen selling their own imaginative creations.  Several individuals sold beautiful beaded jewelry, and another lady had fantastic soaps that she packaged in strips of vintage chenille.  We visited with a young woman who sells “recycled” furniture — she finds the odd bit here and there that needs a little sprucing up and then offers it at the show … she also had some interesting retro bits like cannister sets from, I’d venture to guess, the 40’s or 50’s.  Do you remember the metal cake carriers that looked like anodized copper?

We’re thinking we may have to see about getting a booth ourselves.  A regular booth is $30 and one with electricity is $40.  Jami makes her beaded jewelry and AJ has made some lovely decorative wood pieces.  I am not sure what I could contribute to the venture, but I think it might be fun.  Maybe handcrafted cards?  Hmmm ….

Right now my biggest challenge is making our $ go as far as they possibly can.  It’s not been a good year for us financially, and in great part due to my poor business sense.  I sold more blinds than I probably ever had, but because I don’t manage the books part of it well, we got hit with that huge tax bill.  So I’m trying to reform my ways and not waste $ on convenience foods, take-out, eat-out, etc.  Using up the last of the toothpaste in the tube, even though it’s a flavor I don’t really care for and emphasizing to my guy and my girl that we need to make meals S-T-R-E-T-C-H … when we cook, we need to reduce our serving sizes so that we can get two meals from a recipe, rather than one.  No second servings, and the added bonus is we lose weight! 

Well, I’d best go take care of my Houston business and get back.  I think I’m going to get the girl to ride with me and we’ll work on math as we drive up the highway.  Have a good day.

4 thoughts on “Monday, Monday …

  1. Gorgeous in Texas?? You’re kidding! Seriously I hope all your vendor headaches get resolved. You would think that at least in a down economy that companies might be a little more customer service oriented.Portland has a Saturday Market similar to the one you described every weekend from March thru Oct. They’ve got a permanent spot on the west bank of the Willamette. A LOT of people go there. So you and hubby should come here. j/k :)Have a great night!

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