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a page from the OOAK Barbies History Book: How we came to be in Vallejo

May 22, 2010

When the market crashed in October 2008 I lost a third of my retirement account and I decided that moving out of my home of 32 years in San Francisco would help what I had left last longer.

I set my sights on Las Vegas, NV and Tacoma, WA. My research showed that the cost of living in both places was much lower than in San Francisco. Las Vegas sounded like a great market. And Tacoma is where my sister loves and has a growing art scene.

Every other day or so I looked on for residential and live and work spaces in Las Vegas and Tacoma. By this time, I had created so many OOAK Barbie artworks that they were taking over my home, so I thought a live and work space would be the ideal accomodation. With such a space I could get my work some exposure in front of the public and maybe make some money to supplement my Social Security.

One day I saw a listing for a live and work space on that sounded perfect. I was very excited and quickly picked up the phone and dialed the number. Only then did I notice that the phone number area code was not a Las Vegas or Tacoma area code. It was a Vallejo, CA area code.

I took it as a sign and made an appointment to view the place anyway. Before I knew it was signing papers on the dotted line. Living only an hour from San Francisco was a big bonus to me—I could continue to see my three children and three grandchildren often, much more than had I moved to Las Vegas or Tacoma. I moved to Vallejo in December of 2008 and have been here ever since.

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