Sunday, December 09, 2007

No more hostessing swaps for me!

That is my new year's resolution. Do horrible things to me if I do. I might hostess small, private swaps but that would be it. If I did that, then it would have to be priority mail no matter how small the swap.

Yes, I am going to bitch and moan right now. I just finished up the skinny book swap. No more swaps for me except for the heart quilt journal a couple of months from now. I have at least 10 people who did not send me stamps or money for mailing. It will be AT LEAST $3.00 per envie. That is not counting the international mailings that I need to do. I hope they pay me. I asked specifically that people not send me recycled envies. At least 6 people did. You don't know how much of my own tape I waste trying to close recycled envelopes. Some people don't even bother to put their own address on there. Some people sent me envies way too small and had already put postage on the envelope. How do I fix that? Either I have to put it in a larger envie and pay for postage myself or stuff it into the smaller envie. Quite a few people did not send me enough postage and I had to make that up myself. It adds up when there are about 40+ people in the swap.

Some people sent me the international mail coupons. Most of the time, the people at the post office don't know how to do it or they won't take them. They make nice art backgrounds but are not worth the money for me. Some international people did not send me a return envelope, so I have to go out and buy it because I don't have any big enough from the swap. The pages from the skinny book swap were bulkier and heavier than probably most people thought they would be.

Some people did not write down what category they were in. A couple were not even listed in the swap. I figure they had multiple email addresses. Do you know what fun it is to look through a couple of hundred email addresses trying to find a specific one?

Some people did not wait for their adhesive or paint to dry. The smell knocked me over when I opened the ziplock bag. Some people put their loose postage in between the pages and then it got stuck to the pages.

Okay, I am done. I am through with hostessing swaps. I don't know what possesses me to do it in the first place. I think I get excited about trying something and then want to see how other people do it. I like to see things firsthand. It is so not worth the headache for me anymore. I don't think I will be joining many swaps either.

Okay, now that I have vented. Take a breath and don't hold it. I do want to thank the people who sent me fun stuff and wrote me nice, little notes. I know that you get a lot out of the swaps. You work very hard on them and can't wait for them to come home. I hope you enjoy the results.


Jan Scholl said...

I was out over 100 dollars because of a swap I hosted and held onto for months waiting for the postage. It sucked and I have not done one since. The participants acted like it was my fault. I left the group soon after and they can all kiss my butt. people dont care about much anymore and wonder why they alienate so many of their fellow crafters. the rules were there and if I had kept the stuff, they would have been very hateful.

Dawn said...

It's a shame when you put so much into the effort of hosting a swap that people don't stick to the rules, what I do as far as postage goes is put between $5 and $10 into the envelope, that way it should cover postage and if any envies are needed I will make sure that there is enough to cover the cost of purchasing one by the hostess. It is good to let of steam, join swaps, but don't host that would be the solution - and hey if you want to do a 1 on 1 with me anytime in the new year then contact me

Mary S Hunt said...

I am sure that anyone
(such as myself)
pre-postaging an envelope, did so thinking they were 'helping' you.
Others that caused the multitude of other problems probably did so innocently, again hoping to most likely help you.

I know that I would not have thought that any return would cost so terrible much more than what I was mailing with additional postage to hopefully cover anything I might have been off.

Rest assured that if I was a contributing problem to the pocketbook, just as soon as I know what the damage might be, there will be a Money order, so you needed not worry the check will bounce, to you...of course we do know how slow that Chicago mail I am not so far in South Dakota and still I have yet to receive my package from you.

So, m'dear as a teacher I am sure you could be a little more patient with the students.

Michelle said...

Hey Belinda,
Just wanted to say that I hope you are able to stick to your resolution. It's so hard to say no to people, but sometimes the best thing you can do is clear your plate. Take some time for yourself. All the "stuff" will be there if/when you are ready to get back to it. I'm really proud of you for doing what you needed to do for YOU. I think once these swaps are out the door, a great burden will be lifted and you will wonder why it took you so long to say enough! OK, anyway, you are wonderful and just wanted you to know that!! Michelle (of letter "J" fame ... PS - Watch out for those webkinz! The craze hit here about a year ago and some kids own insane amounts of the little buggers! They are fun, though!

LeslieKA said...

Belinda, I often wonder how you can manage so many swaps. You are AMAZING. I personally would have been crazy long ago! I try so hard to make sure I meet all the swap requirements and can't imagine so many people don't include postage. I'm sure I've missed something somewhere along the line and would hope the hostess would let me know so I could make it right. I will miss your swaps in the future, but totally understand why you made your decision. Happy holidays.
Leslie Anderson

Christine Marie said...

Hi Belinda,

I can't imagine how time consuming it must be to do these swaps so I don't blame you for not doing any more. I want to apologize if I didn't send things in correctly in the Skinny Book was my first swap ever! I actually don't remember if I just sent cash, or an envelope with stamps, or what...but for the fabric swap I will send a crapload of money and a very large envelope!

Bleubeard and Elizabeth said...

I'm really laughing at this post, Belinda. I always tell people not to put postage on their envies and send one large enough. Lo and behold, in my last swap which only had 13 people, two did not follow the "rules." So, I ended up bending the tip-ins to get them in the package. I felt really bad, but I had no way to correct the problem when the postage was already on the small envie. This leads me to wonder why I feel guilty. Do people think I'm a bad host because I bent some tip-ins? Will they think bad of me? I have to learn that I spelled out the rules for mailing clearly and, when they didn't follow them, I did the best I could under the circumstances.

I was luckier than you, though. I asked each person to not ask me to recycle their envies for my latest swap and everyone sent a new envie or just a priority stamp. I know it sounds odd, since I'm such a recycler, but I too have gone thru miles of tape to seal envies. The biggest tape buster is when someone sends a return address on a computer generated piece of paper and I have to tape it on the envie. So, as a fellow swap host, I had to laugh and totally relate to your plight.