Category Archive: Road Trips

Comfort & Joy

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I love waking up in the morning and fluffing the pillows from where we sat together the night before, relaxing. Him on the couch and me in the chair. A reminder of our nightly ritual. Like clockwork, he sits in the same place, and so do I. No need to think about changing “now”, although I do think his spot on the couch is more comfy than mine (and when he’s not home that’s where I’m planted!) Slipcovered and soft, like a favorite pillow you’d take along on your travels…that’s how that couch feels to me.

But my chair is good too, wide enough for two. In fact most would even call it a love seat, but with only one cushion, in my book, it’s a chair. A chair that’s meant to be lounged in, almost like a bed. I do that sometimes too, but mostly I just sit with my legs curled under me sipping my tea or wine, while looking for and indulging in, a new series on Netflix, our guilty pleasure, (we can power through a series in no time) and the occasional movie.

That’s our night, every night when we’re at home. Talking over the day, discussing the next, and winding down for the evening. So I love to get up in the morning & fluff the pillows from the night before and turn the cushions on occasion. Hang the throw back over the arm of the chair and know… same place, same time, tonight, we’ll be be there.

Home. Comfort & Joy.

 

28. Helpful Apps

imageTip #28 Helpful Apps- There’s an app for that…right? YES! I LOVE my apps. Joe can’t stand to pick up my phone because I am an app junkie! But here a few of my favorites for living life on the road and doing what we do:

1. Camp & RV- this app is NOT free. I think it was $10, but I LOVE it! It list all campground info, rest areas, truck stops, toll roads- you name it.

2. Priceline- when we have to have a hotel Priceline is my goto. I always start there.

3. Gas Buddy- always know where the best price is on fuel. And for us, you can use a filter to find diesel (not always easy!)

4. Halfway- this is just a really useful app that let’s you see the halfway point when traveling. Great metope spots (if you need them etc.) Sometimes we meet our wholesale customers on our way to shows so this is a great app!

5. Trip Advisor- this is just what it says-find restaurants. things to do, hotels-everything. It’s a great tool.

This is just a few- there are many, many more- but these are great for starters. Do you have a favorite app?

I would love to hear your thoughts. Have you tried selling your art & crafts? If so, what was your experience? What is the one thing you want to know? Leave a comment below so I can help you figure this out and we’ll get your booty into action! (pssst..you CAN do it!)

hugs,

Marie

read tip #27 here

27. State Parks

Think BIGGER than a sleeping bag! :)

Think BIGGER than a sleeping bag! 🙂

Tip #27 State Parks– This is for those that choose to camp or are thinking about it.

State parks are the first thing that we look for when seeking a campground. They have very affordable prices, excellent facilities and of course they are beautiful!

When we’re in a new park we like to check the whole thing out before we leave and make notes of any campsites that we like, for our next trip. I usually take a picture of the space # and load it into a file on the computer so I always know where it is.

Make sure you verify showers and electric before booking. Some state parks don’t have showers houses. It’s not a must have for us because we have a cap shower, but we find out ahead of time so we’re sure to pack ours, if needed.

I would love to hear your thoughts. Have you tried selling your art & crafts? If so, what was your experience? What is the one thing you want to know? Leave a comment below so I can help you figure this out and we’ll get your booty into action! (pssst..you CAN do it!)

hugs,

Marie

read tip #26 here

 

25. Real Fast Food

IMG_0304I’m not sure why we think that going on the road means going to fast food. Seriously…we all know that REAl FAST food is what nature provides…fruits and veggies, nuts and seeds. There’s no reason you should be caught in the fast food line at the nearest McDonalds, when you’re on the road, if you’re prepared.

The best way to avoid fast food joints while you’re on the road is to always make sure you have a fast food option at your fingertips.

Pack sandwiches in the cooler and pull over at a rest area and have lunch. Rest areas are usually very clean, well maintained and landscaped. They almost always have picnic tables and some even offer grills! Who says you can’t eat gourmet while you travel? 🙂

I would love to hear your thoughts. Have you tried selling your art & crafts? If so, what was your experience? What is the one thing you want to know? Leave a comment below so I can help you figure this out and we’ll get your booty into action! (pssst..you CAN do it!)

hugs,

Marie

read tip #24 here

23. Mason Jar Salads

salad to goTip #23- Mason Jar Salads. This is a favorite! Have you been on Pinterest lately and looked at all of the great ideas for mason jars? They are everywhere! And perfect to pack for shows.

It’s really simple, all you need to do is pick your favorite veggies (and fruit if your like me) a little dressing if you need it and a fork! You can eat it right from the jar- perfectly acceptable. 🙂

The idea is to start with all of the wet ingredients on the bottom and layer the drier ones on top. Super easy. And yes, you can even add the dressing to the bottom of the jar and just shake it up when your ready to eat.

This is one of the BEST ways to stay healthy on the road. You can pack them ahead at time at home or pack them fresh daily from your cooler at the campground or hotel.

I would love to hear your thoughts. Have you tried selling your art & crafts? If so, what was your experience? What is the one thing you want to know? Leave a comment below so I can help you figure this out and we’ll get your booty into action! (pssst..you CAN do it!)

hugs,

Marie

read tip #22 here

22. Pack a Grill

This is breakfast at the campground.

Tip #22 Pack a grill! This was Joe’s idea. We started doing this years ago and will never stop. Portable camp grills are easy to come by. There are some shows where we are able to grill right in the back of our booth (outdoor shows of course) and at the ones where we can’t, we tailgate and grill ahead of time.

We have spent some great evenings on our lawn chairs in the parking lot of hotels (when we’re not camping) watching the sun goes down as we grill out. It’s a lot nicer to sit outside grilling our own food than in a restaurant where the air is stale and the food is just meh…

Remember…this is about having FUN and LIVING your life the way YOU decide! FREE!

I would love to hear your thoughts. Have you tried selling your art & crafts? If so, what was your experience? What is the one thing you want to know? Leave a comment below so I can help you figure this out and we’ll get your booty into action! (pssst..you CAN do it!)

hugs,

Marie

read tip #21 here

20. Move Your Body!

Move your body!

Move your body!

Tip #20. Move Your body! Along with packing a cooler for your weekend trips OR road trips, you need to be thinking about body movement as well. It will help to keep EVERYTHING in your body moving as well. It’s too easy to get off track when you up and leave for 2- 4 days at a time. Thinking about exercise is as important as what’s in your cooler.

One of my favorite things to bring along, because it’s very portable and fun, is my kettlebell. I found KB’s years ago and fell in love with them. It’s one of my favorite forms of body movement. I can throw it (not literally) in the truck and use it at either the campsite OR the hotel room.

If KB’s aren’t your thing and your staying at a hotel, then look for one with a fitness room. Many times hotels are not conveniently located for walking. I always take my walking shoes just in case, but usually  plan on using my KB. If your camping, walking is ideal.

I also have weighted hola hoops that are light and portable. And don’t forget your yoga mat. Nothing is more portable than your yoga mat!

Bottom line- remember to move your body everyday. Find something that you LOVE to do and do that. Don’t do something that isn’t fun or feels forced, it defeats the whole purpose.

I would love to hear your thoughts. Have you tried selling your art & crafts? If so, what was your experience? What is the one thing you want to know? Leave a comment below so I can help you figure this out and we’ll get your booty into action! (pssst..you CAN do it!)

hugs,

Marie

read tip #19 here

19. Pack a Cooler

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The cooler on top is a new purchase we’re taking back to the truck- we do not haul two coolers back and forth! 🙂

Tip #19. Pack a cooler. Beginning today I am going to start incorporating some healthy travel tips; ones that have worked well for us. So the first one is always, pack a cooler. We not only pack a cooler, but we also have a portable grill. We take it with us almost everywhere we go.

Joe happens to be a hunter/gatherer, so there is always fresh meat and fish in the freezer. Of course if you’re vegetarian or vegan, your cooler would be packed much differently.

Ours includes: meat, veggies for salads, hummus and veggies for dipping, fruit and sometimes homemade bread, condiments, sea salt & pepper, plates, travel mugs/cups, real silverware, and paper towels. Whenever possible, we are traveling back and forth from our campsite, but even if we’re staying in a hotel room, the protocol is pretty much the same. We purchased a collapsable wagon at Sam’s Club and it’s always in the truck. It hauls or cooler and dry goods bag back and forth, making life very easy!

When you live life at art & craft shows, street fairs, and vintage markets,  you do not want to eat the standard “fair food” as the main source of fuel for your body.  You will become fat, sick and on your way to an early grave (at least that’s my opinion). Taking the time to prep ahead and have a semi-plan will keep you from the food stalls and ice cream trucks (though we do splurge once at each show- fro me it’s always ice cream, so Joe will usually follow suit). You will have more energy for the long hours that you’re there and more energy equals a happier YOU!

I would love to hear your thoughts. Have you tried selling your art & crafts? If so, what was your experience? What is the one thing you want to know? Leave a comment below so I can help you figure this out and we’ll get your booty into action! (pssst..you CAN do it!)

hugs,

Marie

read tip # 18 here

6. Setting Up At A Flea Market

Tip #6

Vintage Peddler

Vintage Peddler

If you decide to setup shop at a flea market, don’t be afraid to stand your ground on price.

Most customers recognize quality, handmade arts & crafts and don’t intend to “insult” you, but there may be a few (there IS always ONE!) that will ask you for a “deal”. Have something prepared ahead of time to either:
1. have a response as to why you don’t “make deals” or
2. point out why your product is already priced as “a deal.”

This is something that may happen at an art & craft show too (or a vintage market- which we happen to LOVE!) Don’t be offended. We simply explain to them that this IS our best deal- of course we have a “buy 4 and save” and a “buy 12 and save” option in our booth that we’re happy to point out when we are asked. When you take it for what it is- they only want a deal, they are NOT saying your product isn’t “worth it”, then it’s all harmless.

With that said it is nice if you have a response ready so you’re not caught off guard (as we were) when you’re asked (because you WILL be asked.)

At the very first show we did out of town we had seasoned craft shoppers ready to buy and looking for a “deal”. We were asked over and over on that first night, “do I get a discount if I buy more than one?” It didn’t take us long come up with something, because NO wasn’t cutting it!

You may not have a product where this would make sense, and that’s fine; for us it did make sense. And you may not want to offer discounts, you don’t have to. Just have something prepared for when you are asked. (I hope you get by now that you WILL BE ASKED!)

Here’s a great response I heard from another vendor recently: a customer came into his booth and exclaimed, “Oh my god I LOVE this…what’s your best price?” And he looked at her and said, “That’s how you treat something you LOVE?” SOLD. 🙂

And on a side note: Joe has an invisible sign in our booth. I’ll leave it up to your imagination as to what it says. 🙂

read tip #5 here

I would love to hear your thoughts. Have you tried selling your art & crafts? If so, what was your experience? What is the one thing you want to know? Leave a comment below so I can help you figure this out and we’ll get your booty into action! (pssst..you CAN do it!)

hugs,

Marie

5. Always Take Enough Change

Tip #5

Always take enough change. Most shows do not offer a bank on site for vendors to buy change, though making it is necessary when dealing in cash. We like to start with $250 in small bills and coins.

I know this can sound like over kill, but we have been to shows before where we have been out of change in the

 

first couple of hours. It’s better to take what you think you might need rather than having to lose a sale or have to beg from all of your fellow vendors- they need their change too!

Some shows do offer banking onsite and that’s an added bonus, especially when you’re out of town and in need. But we have been to some locations where the bank won’t even “make change” unless you have an account with them. Rules have changed with banking in recent years, so just go prepared.

Another option, and one we don’t use (but did have to once when our register drawer wouldn’t open) is to only take credit card sales. This “can be” an option when you have that capability. I’ve been to events where that WAS the only option; it was more for safety and security than anything. It also eliminates the need for change and going to the bank. Like I said, it’s not one that we have used, except when necessary, but it is an option. If you’re worried about traveling with cash, do it. Most everyone has a credit or debit card; many prefer it. But make sure you will have service for those transactions before heading out.

And about credit cards: with the square and paypal options there really is no reason for anyone not to take a credit card these days. I think when you DON’T take them you are leaving a LOT of money on the table. I don’t know too many people that travel with cash, do you? It also leaves options open. If they do run out of cash on hand, and later find something in your booth that they can’t live without, they don’t have to! We don’t personally use the square or the PayPal swiper, but we do have a credit card machine- and won’t leave home without it!

Checks: for us taking them is too risky. We used to do shows where almost everyone paid with a check, but not anymore. As I said before, everyone now has a credit or debit card. If they’re going to write you a check then they might as well use their debit card. We have received several bad checks, closed accounts, etc., over the years with no way to recoup the loss (other than court) so it’s no longer a form of payment we accept. If you do accept them, do so with caution: get DL number, phone #, etc.

I would love to hear your thoughts. Have you tried selling your art & crafts? If so, what was your experience? What is the one thing you want to know? Leave a comment below so I can help you figure this out and we’ll get your booty into action! (pssst..you CAN do it!)

hugs,

Marie

read tip #4 here

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