Thursday, February 15, 2024

You've got mail!

Over the years, I've shipped many quilts to the US to be photographed for a magazine, and they've been shipped back to me. Other than paying shipping costs, I've incurred no other cost. No duty, no brokerage fees, no HST. 

Three of us in this area were fortunate enough to have quilts accepted to the CherryWood challenge, and those quilts are winging their way back to us. One person was notified that her quilt was coming home, but she would have to pay $150 in brokerage fees and duties to get it. Seriously?? The quilt belongs to her, was made in Canada, she received NO money for it, and it was simply coming back home. A second friend received the same notice. 

I believe BOTH are refusing to pay, and they should. They do NOT need to pay duty on something that they made! 

When I got a notification that mine was coming, I sent them a note asking them to change the commercial invoice to avoid such costs. I still got a COD invoice for $39.95, which was brokerage fees. I decided to pay for that rather than fight it. Time is money, after all! 

OH -- The email said I could pay online rather than mess with the driver when he drops it off, so I went that route. WAIT A MINUTE -- now the invoice is only $33.17. That's even better. Alas, I could NOT input my credit card and have it work. I know I could be better with technology, but I know how to fill out a form. I tried it MANY times. No go. And their silly payment screen just comes back with CHECK THE PAYMENT information - it doesn't highlight the issue and deletes all the information. UPS -- that system SUCKS!!!!

So, I attempted to call them to pay online. I asked about the difference in the amounts. OH -- that's the COD payment fee when you pay the driver. OK -- so I don't want to pay that amount; I only want to pay the brokerage fees of $33.17 since I'm not paying the driver. Nope, I can't do that on the phone. Seriously? Seriously!!!! I was MAD!!! I was transferred to several other people, and everyone said the same thing. 

I was shuffled to the tech support, and they couldn't help me. I mean - this is BAD customer service. You can't fix your system, so I can pay you with my credit card. Nope! 

While on hold for someone else, I decided to try PayPal. Yes, I know there are fees, but they are less than the $6 for the COD. Anyway -- the payment (which goes through my credit card) was accepted.

I've had an excellent experience with UPS - that's how I always sent my packages, but this time? Well, they sucked!!! But it's not entirely their fault; the commercial invoice was set up to trigger those brokerage fees. I'm not sure what did it, but they need to investigate. 

Do you think you could miss the fact that there is COD on this package? But since it was paid, the driver just dropped it off. 

COD charges

This is my Princess Diana Cherrywood Challenge. I dug out my Bob Ross Cherrywood Challenge, which I received a couple of years ago, and it's still in the shipping package. Look -- NO COD on that one. 

No COD charges on the one on the left

Oh well, I got it home, paid $33.17 (plus whatever percentage PayPal charged), and I'm good. I'm unsure how the others will get their quilts back, but they should NOT have to pay $150. 

I ordered THREE things from my favorite online store. GASP!!!! Yes -- I order from that store if I know I can't get the product anywhere else. Two of the three items were obscure, and if I tried to buy them from a local shop, they would have to order them from the manufacturer, which would take forever. I need them NOW. Of course, I'm not sharing you yet! 

Two were supposed to come yesterday, and one today. However, all three landed on my doorstep in the morning. ALL in separate packages. Now that's pretty environmentally friendly!

Three SEPARATE packages from Amazon

Although this one can be used as a journal cover!! The other two are garbage in my area. 

This can be recycled into a journal cover!

One was a book. The Amazon facility in Bolton, Ontario, has a book printing press. So they print books on demand. This is the second book that I've received from that location. I wonder if we can tour that facility? The quality is excellent, and the turnaround was quick. Again -- I'm not encouraging people to buy there, but sometimes there is no option. Right on the author's website is a link to Amazon. That's the only way to buy the book! 

Manufactured by

The other day, I received a card from the post office that I had a package. Seriously? We have huge package mailbox slots, or they drop at the front door. The only reason to go to the post office is if a signature is required or something else. I've gone to the post office two days in a row -- NO package. What is going on? I'll go back again today but after that? Actually, they told me to call first. Did anyone send me anything? 

I made some progress in the sewing world. I managed to finish repairing those paper-picked units for my Tequila Lime quilt. There were four of them left to fix, and all four got completed, so all eight are the way they are supposed to be. It really was a painless experience! If you screw up, don't despair - just get to work and fix it! I had to rip ALL EIGHT UNITS completely out! NO big deal -- slow and steady. 

Two of the eight units are fixed!

I have the tip of the seven remaining units done, and I hope to get back to it later today. The tip was simple, but it was a pain to do. The rest is just a repeat of the previous units. 

Working on the remaining 7 units for the other side

I did some machine embroidery and emptied a spool of thread! 

Empty spool of thread

OH --- look what came in my mailbox (email) yesterday. 

The Island Walk

You probably can't read that -- but it's The Island Walk. 700 km walk around Prince Edward Island. I'm in!!! I've known about it for a couple of years, but they are ramping it up and trying to make it similar to the Camino, where it can be self-supporting. I must check it out -- that will NOT be for this year, as I'm already booked to finish the Camino de Santiago! 

Well, it's going to be another busy day! I'm a little behind in getting things done on my weekly task list, and I have to prepare for a presentation tonight. Slow and steady!

OH -- someone sent me an email about the permission to practice. Who among you NEEDS another quilt? Probably most of you are sewing for the sake of sewing - your family and friends are already inundated and do not want more quilts. Then why aren't you practicing? Use some of that fabric to try new techniques. NO ONE said you have to make finished items. And it's OK to throw stuff away if it doesn't turn out OK. Did you keep every coloring book picture your kids colored? Of course, you didn't. So STOP being so hard on yourself, STOP making those quilts, and try new things!!!!!

Do you have a book or pattern you bought because you wanted to learn a new technique? GET IT OUT!!!! 

On that cheery note, I'm out of here!!

Have a super day!!!



  1. Your comment hit me between the eyes this morning ! I needed this to get me out of my rut and start playing, and practicing. Thanks for the reminder.

  2. Yes, practice, then bind and put in the charity box. People look for hot pads, pads for under plants, folded in half it's a mug rug. My dog has an assortment of "mats" for her bowls (she's a wee bit messy and the mats keep it at bay). Walking the entire island? How long does that take? I also donate some of these to the local animal shelter, big dogs to hamsters need a soft landing. Thanks, really enjoyed reading this. I'm new.