Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Treats for July 4

Just got a nice little shipment of fun things to help celebrate the 4th of July. Can't really see our sparklers (tall tube packages) in the photo, but these guys are the real thing: super bright sparkles, totally safe for holding in your hand, and long-lasting. Not those cheap things that sputter away. Poof balls are paper balls that come with 'shooters' -- again, very safe (although you don't want to stand 2" away from someone's eye) and the paper is biodegradeable. The kids will go crazy with these (big kids, too - we had quite a poof ball war at our house last New Year's eve). And the little "Pops" are so sweet for putting at each place setting for your July 4 bbq. Pull the string for a confetti blast.

Perhaps best of all, these are all made by a really nice company in Eugene; everything is hand made there by local artisans. Just the kind of thing we love.

By the way, we'll be open at Pomegranate on the 4th of July, since Mollie said she no longer wants to be in the Pet Parade (too limpy)... but we'll be closing up around 3pm so we can go home and get ready for friends and family to invade us for our traditional 4th of July bbq and extreme croquet game. So stop by for a little browsing, or for any last minute treats you might need. We will be open on Sunday, too, from 11-4.

Monday, June 29, 2009

A useless comparison and waste of time...

... but my mind landed on this meaningless thought and I had to figure it out. The feds went after Martha Stewart for securities fraud and got their conviction. She spent five months in prison and five months on house arrest, received probation (two years) and a $30,000 fine. By selling her stocks when she did, she avoided a loss of about $46,000. So you could say – if she in fact did intend to defraud – she "stole" that money from the other shareholders. Kind of a stretch, that. But let's say she did it. She spent nearly one year in some form of incarceration (okay, it probably wasn't too tough to be in that cupcake compound, nor would anyone mind being stuck in her house for five months, but just go along with this for a minute). Her total "theft:" $46,000.

Bernard Madoff just got 150 years for his undisputed swindle of something like $60 billion. People have lost their life savings to him; there have been suicides and utter despair over his thefts: theft as real as if he broke into victims' houses and helped himself to all their possessions. And then cleaned out their bank accounts. 150 years is better than the twelve years his attorneys suggested. Still. If you applied the same formula to him as Martha (one year in prison for every $46,000), he should have been sentenced to 13, 043 years in prison. I think I did the math right. My little calculator couldn't even handle all the zeros; had to go to the big adding machine.

Too bad Madoff wasn't investigated at the same time as Martha, with the same zeal. Apparently he was deep into his criminal activities then, and more than a few people seemed to know about it. Meanwhile, Ms. Stewart seems to have bounced back. Say what you will about her; she still has a brilliant mind for business.

Friday, June 26, 2009

11th anniversary party at Pomegranate

How did it slip by so fast? Tomorrow we're celebrating eleven years in business at our slightly off the beaten path location. It's been a great ride at our little Pomegranate shop: started on a shoestring (still on a shoestring) and learning as we went along (that never stops). Still having fun after all these years, and we still have our dear Mollie (VP of PR, aka Shop Dog Extraordinaire), even though she's limpy and lumpy (but so are we). Come see us tomorrow, Saturday, June 27 from 12-6! We'll be serving up treats, tidbits, and libations; giving out door prizes and offering specials for the day. And with a purchase of $15 or more, we'll give you one of our most popular french soaps: a round bar of verbena, fresh from Provence.

Our new pétanque/bocci court is ready for play! We plan to christen it tomorrow -- only problem is, we don't have enough sets of boules for general play... so if you have some, please bring them along. Bring your own pastis, too... You know where we are, right? Maybe not: part of the charm (and problem) of the place is our location. Even locals still tell us they never knew it existed, but it's an interesting bit of Bend history, tucked in under the pine trees and surrounded by big box stores. Just off 3rd Street, across from the back end of Macy's, on your way to Sun Mountain Family Fun Center. It's going to be a lovely day; stop by for a little pique-nique and browsing.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Pomegranate now open on Sundays for summer

Starting tomorrow, June 14, we'll be open for summer sundays from 11-4. It's a nice day to come poke around. And, the shop is full of new goodies, including a great selection of lavender (super healthy, in large containers) and gorgeous Day Lilies. What else is new? Cards and paper, vintage hotel silver, Bella Notte's newest bedding selections in organic cottons and linen, cocktail napkins, french soaps...

Summer hours: Monday through Saturday 10:30-5:30; Sundays 11-4. À bientôt!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

A few flea pictures...

... flea market pictures, that is. Last Saturday's French Flea Market at Pomegranate was a blast. I had so much fun snapping pictures of all the goodies everybody brought. Our new pétanque court (former canal site out back) worked perfectly for setting up more vendors, since we had twice as many this time as in past events. A big thank you and lots of love to our vendors who brought such great items and managed to set up really cute displays within a few quick hours Saturday morning. Next markets: Saturday, July 18 and Saturday, August 22, 2009. See our website at www.pomegranate-home.com for more info.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Get Ready, Get Set... French Flea Market Saturday

The skies are clearing (fingers crossed) just in time for our first French Flea Market of the summer. Tomorrow, Saturday June 6 from 10-4, in the gardens at Pomegranate. We have more than 20 hand-picked vendors (our largest market ever!) coming in with their wares. It's fun, funky and full of surprises. You'll find antiques, vintage, retro and hip handcrafted goods, from linens and jewelry to furniture, garden art, and who knows what... it's all good, and all at good prices! By the way, on purchases over $100, you can use your credit card via Pomegranate's service... but suggest you raid the cookie jar and tuck some cash into your pockets, because you will find something you must have!

The market opens at 10am, but you might want to arrive a wee bit early for best pick. Then you could zoom over to McKay's Cottage (within walking distance) for a hearty brunch. And then come back to see what new things the vendors have put out. As the day goes on, many of them replenish their booths, so it's worth a few visits. The shop is full of wonderful new things, too, so put on your garden hat and make sure to clear a little time for the most fun shopping event of the season! The market ends at 4pm, but our shop is open until 5:30.

See photos of past flea markets on our website: pomegranate-home.com (go to the "Events" section). If you miss this one, don't worry, mes amis, because we have two more scheduled for Saturday, July 18 and Saturday, August 22. We are at 120 NE River Mall Avenue, just off 3rd Street, across from the north end of Macy's. Look for the banner atop our sign near Ihop. See you tomorrow!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

A momentous 1989

Has it really been 20 years? 1989 started off on a good note for me: my adorable niece Gigi was born (the first of three wonderful girls). Hard to believe that sweet baby is now in college.

That June, my mom and I were off to Italy together for a fabulous three-week girls' vacation. Normally I couldn't tell you the exact dates of a long-ago trip, but I remember this one clearly. The night we arrived, we turned on the TV in our Rome hotel room and saw pictures of mayhem. Listening to the news in rapid fire Italian, my mother said she thought there had been a terrible train accident in China, somehow involving students. We found out later it was the Tiananmen Square Massacre. The Chinese government calls it simply the "June Fourth Incident." Interesting to see where they've come in 20 years. Still a communist government, still repressive, but enjoying the fruits of capitalism in a way that defies logic. CBS's Sunday Morning (still one of the best shows on TV) just did a thought-provoking segment on it, and there are several in-depth articles in the newspapers today (including a good one in the Wall Street Journal).

I keep wondering what Wal-Mart would look like today if they didn't have access to the cheap plunder in China. But then I have to add, maybe in tiny letters, that we, as small retailers, are not immune to the lure of China, either. There's no end to the goods they can produce at competitive prices. You just can't get around it, though we try. The twenty-year anniversary of Tiananmen Square is Thursday, June 4. The students who participated are now in their 40s. Hard to comprehend.

By the way, that Italian vacation was one of the best times mom and I have spent together. She was in charge of researching the historical and cultural parts of the visit, and I was in charge of logistics. It worked out brilliantly.

And then there was October 17, same year. My San Francisco apartment went from sweet to shambles, courtesy of the Loma Prieta earthquake. I had some neat pictures to share, but I can't find them (if only I had a digital camera and iPhoto back then!). There's one of a bookcase that skittered across the floor a few yards, threw itself on top of my sofa, and spewed books all over the room. Another is a shot of a tiny pantry cabinet with most contents on the floor, in an oozy pile of broken glass and mixed condiments. I remember getting together with friends and neighbors that evening, dining on ice cream and beer... we felt we had to consume whatever was melting in our non-operational refrigerators/freezers. No electricity, spotty phone service, nobody driving except in emergency situations, no streetlights... and an unusually balmy 80+ degrees. You know how sometimes one little moment defines a whole story? That came when I was sitting on my windowsill in front, maybe 9pm, just watching the scene in my neighborhood. The city was beautiful, dark and silent, except for the sounds of groups of people walking and chatting and greeting each other. Everybody was out, some gathered around little transistor radios, some just strolling, some just perched in open windows or fire escapes, like me. It was a scene of true neighborliness.