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About this journal

This journal was originally to record my thoughts on collecting and building my Netherlands Wilhelm III Gold 10 Gulden Set and other projects like  my modern silver bullion NCLT sets. When it got started in the summer of 2007 I was single, in my early 20's, and working on my B.Sc. in Chemical Engineering. Starting in 2016, with my marriage and the birth of my first son, Benjamin, much of my writing has focused on raising my sons to have a love of collecting coins and exonumia and discussing how my collecting occurs in the context of my marriage and life overall.

Entries in this journal

Zimbabwe Round 2 Grade Results are in!

TL:DR – The coins did great and I’m thrilled and freaking out a bit about some of these! XD So “Thank you, NGC” on the hard work and the much faster than expected turnaround.   I need to give major props to NGC, who have pulled off a major turnaround, brought turnaround times down and delivered me grades on these months sooner than I was thinking. It was only about 5-6 weeks ago that I was saying I might not have grades for another 4 months from now. I’m hoping this also means tha

A 1980 Zimbabwe Proof Set

So, this entry is going to lack the length and the narrative of many of my more recent posts and just be little, “Look what I got.” But… I snagged a 1980 Zimbabwean proof set, in the original Royal Mint Packaging.   Mike had asked me a few months back if I’d considered getting into proof coins as I was getting the first round of grades back and ramping up my purchases of raw mint state coins. I’d initially just shrugged and said “Nah,” because I was focusing on the mint state /

Moving along...

I thought it was worth an update to say, I got the email from NGC this week saying that they acknowledge the receipt of my 29 coin submission (22 Zimbabwe Coins, 7 Italian Coins). So the timeline so far is: 1/14 - Package Mailed 1/26 - Package Delivered 2/22 - Receipt Acknowledged and Submission entered as received by NGC 2/23 - Payment Acknowledged Looking at it, since I sent this box in, World Moderns have increased from the 71 business days they were at in Januar

Covid continues to mess up... EVERYTHING

I mailed out that submission to NGC on Jan 14th. It got to the Sarasota distribution center around midnight on Jan 20th, processed through there in about half and hour and was marked as in route to the destination facility. And then... Nothing. Today is the 26th. It has not been scanned in 6 days and about 10 hours. Starting Monday I started sending emails and trying to shake things out because if it isn't at NGC by COB on Monday the 31st the new pricing comes into effect and the cost

The Zimbabwe Birds are in Flight!

I took advantage of having the day off yesterday to box up the Zimbabwe coins and take them to the post office before Shandy and I went to lunch as a kind of pre-versary thing - today is the day. 6 years together. We were supposed to attend a wedding today for a cousin that will now share our date, but our child care got sick and Sam is dealing with his latest ear infection, so we decided to call some quiet time alone today and a nice lunch good enough and we'll try to just enjoy some stole

I have to share, and laugh, and give props here.

I got an email today from Ali asking me if I really meant to use the word “Causalities” in the title of my set and not “Casualties.” She wanted to make sure I meant to do that before she sent the plaque in to be made with it printed like that. I read that email and immediately wanted to bang my head on the desk. I do not think I will ever ever know how many times I have looked at that and not seen that, but, props to Ali, she caught it. I missed it. Shandy missed it. I have to as

Mikes saves the day... and USPS ruins it a little.

So... continuing from the last journal posted about this… When I opened the box from the seller, I had 3 of the 8-coin sets that included later-date steel coins from mostly 2002 and only 1 of the 7-coin sets that had 1997 dated coins, including that 1997 $2 coin. To make things one step worse, the $2 coin in that set had a bad, deep scratch/ ding. Reached out to the seller, who quickly said I could keep the extra 8-coin set and they'd look for and send me another 1997 d

I’m going to have to rethink this… find a better way… Or Maybe Just MORE…

I found a seller offering some old, Franklin Mint, “Coin Sets of the World” cards for Zimbabwe that had the coins from 1C to $1. Some of them were made in the 1990s and some of them had less-appealing coins with some spotting, but they had a couple – at a slightly higher price, but still only about $11 for a coin set - that had only coins from 1980-1983, that were clean, pretty, and spot-free per the listing and “nearly perfect.” I saw these and decided to snap them up, initially thin

And, I think we’ve picked the winners. Together. :)

Shandy and I have picked (from amongst the coins I have so far) the ones we think are the best and these will be among the ones I send in a few months from now. I am looking to make a couple more purchases of raw Zimbabwean coins between now and when these go out to NGC to try to get examples of the last few types I will need and maybe get better examples of some of these, so some of these may get bumped out of the submission if I find better – more on that in a couple of weeks probably.

Hindsight is 20/20… and really is quite painful some days…

So, I’ve received the new 10-coin sets of Zimbabwean coins and I’m torn between being very happy and more than a little frustrated. I haven’t closely examined all of these yet, but these new 10-coin sets are just significantly better than what I got last time buying from the other dealer. The 5C, 10C, $2, and even the $5 coins are vastly better even at first glance – Shandy even commented on how stark the contrast is. The ones from the new sets in some cases just straight up make the ones f

Going for another round. More 10-coin sets...

The seller I got more Bond coins from recently also has some 10-coin sets of the pre-hyperinflation coins for $8, but if you get 4+ they're $6.40 each. I think I had seen these back in April and passed them over - went with coins from a California dealer because he says the $5, $10, and $25 coins he has are "lightly circulated" where the other 7 denominations are uncirculated. Given what I paid for those others ($18 each) and how that turned out with the $2 and $5 brass coins, I feel more t

A charming looking group of coins, I think.

The Zimbabwe coin submission has arrived back from NGC. So, you people trying to ninja my brain and make me fret can just chill out. (Lookin at you, Mike! ) That said, I have been having an internal dialogue on this and “declared value” along the lines of “I’m wondering if I’m doing this wrong, which may bear further discussion. It is the last of the submissions mailed from the old house, the last of the submissions I had mailed back to my in-laws because of the move. So hopefully no m

A (dirty?) 1980 Z Cent

So, it's a Sunday, morning at the time. Ben has had a friend over all weekend and the bickering has been constant all morning and we're both just short of the point of sending the kid home to just get some peace because they're driving us insane and we're tired. About a week prior I'd seen a 1980 Zimbabwean cent up for auction in "Mint State" with a $2.99 starting bid with $1.50 shipping. The seller's pictures weren't the best, but it looked promising at first glance. 1980-1989 cents f

Well, Xan gave me my answer... or part of it anyway. lol

Xan Chamberlain must have gotten a box in the mail yesterday. This set popped up last night with just one coin and now the other 7 coins from that submission that got added to the census about 2 weeks ago have been added. It also looks like he has a $2 coin that popped up in the census the following week when my coins were added.But I'm not seeing in his set (yet, anyway) a 1999 10C in MS64 or an older-type $1 coin that popped up in the census the same week as my coins and that $2 coi

I don't really NEED all those but at that price I'll take them...

I've referenced in previous entries that I've been having trouble sourcing some $1 Bond Coins at a reasonable price. All the other sellers I found offering the $1 coin were calling it "rare" (nonsense!) and asking $10-15 each for them. I've been trying to acquire multiples of all of these - usually 3-5 of each denomination - to have a better chance of getting a really nice one. But $10-15 each felt... rough. $6-7 is about the max I'll pay for these raw right now. But the other wee

Not sure when or how, but the grades have posted at long last…

I was checking last night, and these still showed as being in quality control. This afternoon I opened my laptop, and the submission tracker page was open in a tab I left open last night when I shut the laptop. It auto updated / refreshed, and I saw “shipped” flash across my field of view as I was closing the tab, and then I frantically re-loaded the page, wondering if I had finally gone crazy. I’m guessing this is the result of some back-office people in the shipping department workin

It is 100%, for sure FOR SURE, someone else is submitting these too…

So today saw another census update and another big increase in the Zcoin population. Last week we saw an increase from 33 to 41. Today we saw an increase to 57. At the start of the year I think it was only 29 total - including 12 NCLT S$10 coins. The MS population increased from 9, to 17, to, now, 33. Interestingly, looking again, I actually don’t think the update last week included my coins like I thought and I think this week's update does - especially based on the dates and the

I think Sam really has the worst luck...

Well, shortly after I made my last post we went to pick up Sam from daycare and we found out he'd been lethargic and sick all day and was running a fever again. He's been home since then but lethargic and increasingly unwilling to eat or drink. Today we too him back to the doctor and then later in the day had to give up and take him to the ER because he wasn't peeing anymore.  Turns out he as pneumonia... at two and a half... and his O2Sats are low and he'll probably be getting admitted again fo

And now things get more clear...

So, I was still feeling salty about those $2 and $5 bi-metallics and decided to leave a bad review on them a while ago - I left good reviews on two raw notes I'd bought that both graded well. A few days later they reply to the 5-star reviews thanking me, but I see nothing on the 2-star... The 5 stars are showing on the website, but the 2 star isn't. Three days later I finally see a reply come through saying that they tried to reach out to me but got no response... the 2-star review sti

The Zimbabwean $5 coins look more promising this time.

I got the new Zimbabwean $5 coins I ordered in a few days ago and... they look a lot more shiny and nice this time. They actually look shiny and nice this time - there are no dark spots or mint green areas of obvious environmental damage. Unfortunately - no pictures for now. They got packed away a few days ago along with all the other raw coins in 2x2s in the binder. We are now 8 days out from when we're supposed to get the keys to the new place and all non-essentials are rapidly getti

Learning that you're a little right, a little wrong, and a little ignorant...

I'm starting to work on digging into the Zimbabwe coins more to try to build out a nice group of descriptions for that set once the coins clear grading. I am clearly not excited about those coins / getting them back graded or anything. Clearly. I am just front-running working on descriptions for coins I will not get back for a month and a half. Anyway... I finally found out what the KM numbers for all of them were. And found out I was wrong about several of them - some that I thought g

This threatens to raise my hopes...

I looked today and my 13 coin Zimbabwe submission is now fully entered in the system and "scheduled for grading."  This has me hopeful that I could maybe see grades by the end of this month - maybe 2-3 weeks sooner than I'd been expecting based on the turnaround times listed at about 49 days... but I'm basing this on how quickly other things - not world moderns - have gone from scheduled to in grading. So that hope may be dangerous. I could just in in for 3-4 weeks of them sitting as "Schedu

A cute, dopey, derpy set full of TOP POP coins?

My submission of Zimbabwe coins, as of yesterday, is officially “received” at NGC, but it’s that weird new kind of “received” where you cannot click on the invoice number and can’t see any of the line items. They just took them out of the box and put the invoice number in to say, “See! We got it! Now go away and stop bugging us about your box!” Joking! Said with love, folks! Anyway… I have been thinking about my MS65 10C coin, and the fact that it’s a TOP POP - that I got for $21 after it

The Z Coins away, the 10Gs back home.

I finally took a minute, filled out the rest of the paperwork and printed the shipping label and the Z coins are scheduled for pick-up. Doing a bit of a deeper dive on this than I have in previous entries, I am sending in 13 coins: KM-1b: 1 cent KM-2: 5 Cent KM-8: 10 Cent KM-9: 20 Cent KM-10: 50 Cent KM-11: $1 KM-14: $10 KM-15: $25 KM-16: 1 Cent Bond Coin KM-17: 5 Cent Bond Coin KM-18: 10 Cent Bond Coin KM-19: 25 Cent Bond Coin

Residue... Joy... But, forward with the Bond Coins! (... EDIT to add: Got my sale... maybe?)

Well, I got the notice from NGC/NCS today that they're recommending sending the 1975 Tobacco Dove coin to NCS to remove Residue... No idea how that happened unless it got on there from the OMP back in the day.  Anyway... I went ahead and told them to remove it and then try for a grade again. I suspect I'm going to end up regretting sending that in at all unless it comes back as a MS70 by some miracle. I got the Zimbabwe Bond Coins opened up and into flips. This process was more interesting
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