Sunday, May 31, 2009

Phineas and Lou

Phineas and Lou is a wonderful shop on Etsy. I found this shop when I entered the give away Jennifer was having on her BLOG. The prize was an apple sack!! It's the coolest thing - I love it! There is no way hubby's apples will get bruised in his lunch again (mine is a red one).



#1. How did you decide on your shop name?
I used to be gingerlime initially, but I didn't feel that it really fit just right, plus there are a few other things with that name. Phineas and Lou came along after I made two stuffed owls I made a little while back. I fell in love with them and their names together and how they made me feel. It's hard to explain, but it felt just right.
I also have a shop for my paintings...Jennifer Price Davis


#2. When did you start crafting?
Oh man, when I was like 4 or 5, my sister and I would paint and I would put prices on everything, LOL! Painting and crafting always came naturally to me. I even made my Barbies clothes with a needle and thread before I was 10, I think. I used to cut their hair as well, and pain their lips with fingernail polish for lipstick...those poor Barbies!


#3. Are there other crafts you would like to try?
Hmmmm, I did a woodshop class in seventh grade and I think that could be fun. Metal smithing would be nice too.





#4. What or who inspires you?
So many things inspire me...love, angst, faith and faith questions, yoga, nature, and necessity...all of that and more.


#5. Do you have a day job?
Yep, I'm a do career counseling.


#6. What is the item in your shop you enjoyed making the most and why?
Is it too corny to say all of them? I can say that my most favorite things are the leg warmers, the apple sacks, and tea bag wallet if I absolutely had to choose. The bath and body products are my therapy...when I need to think, making the little rectangular and circular shapes help to clear my head.
In my art shop, my favorite is usually my newest :)


Thursday, May 28, 2009

Upcycling/Recycling 2 May 28

Quick note: We are camping this weekend, leaving as soon as Logan & I get home from school. Hope you all have a great weekend!! See you on Monday.


JUNK STOP

Hello, ACC readers! My name is Rhonda. I have a shop on Etsy called the Junk Stop and I also write a blog called Crafty Bitch 101. I've been crafting for as long as I can remember, and from the very beginning I started using found materials. My first craft show was around age 12, and I sold pins I made out of the remaining pieces of my incomplete puzzles, with various other found objects attached. (A low-temp glue gun was the first piece of craft equipment I owned, circa age 10!) Scavenging is something I come by naturally; it's gotta be genetic because it's so typical of my father's side of the family! My dad is one of those people who not only can fix anything, but probably has the parts on hand to do it. He's a serious packrat, but only with truly useful stuff (no trash bags full of gum wrappers or anything!) and he's got it all pretty well organized. So I guess it's no suprise that I have shelf after shelf of storage bins labeled with things like "plastic spools" and "soda can tabs."


There's always satisfaction in finishing a project, but I feel even more so when I complete something that's mainly composed of items that were kept out of the landfill. (As an added bonus, recycled crafters have very little to worry about when it comes to the cost of supplies!!) I do consider myself a recycler, as opposed to an upcycler. "Upcycle" is a fairly new word, but I've been doing this in one form or another for almost two decades now. Call it what you will, it doesn't really matter to me. (A rose by any other name!) Stop by my shop and check out what I do. (I also carry craft supplies, and my fried Sara and I sell some vintage clothes too!) And if you mention at checkout that you saw me on Audrey's blog, I'll give you 10% off of your entire purchase! Just wait for a revised invoice before paying!








RED NECK CHIC


I have been making purses (amongst other things) for about 10 years. About half of my bags were made out of "found" fabric pieces such as curtains, pillows, table clothes, etc. and most of them sported belts as handles as well as vintage trims and accessories - and the other half were/are made out of designer fabric samples! I had been playing around with the idea of "marketing" the fact that I recycle/upcycle - and also that I used a lot of leather and cowhide (recycled of course!)- for awhile! I had about 15 different names and concepts that I had been knocking around when on a Saturday morning (almost a year ago!!!) "red.neck Chic" just came to me!


It all started on a sunny Saturday morning – U-turn number…(not sure what number, but I made some Grandparents Proud!!!) and of course, the mandatory garage sale! (Turns out later I found out that it wasn't a garage sale, but a "junk stand" that is open every week-end!) I waded through absolutely unbelievable piles of junk and with treasured belts, a lamp base and an embroidered pillowcase as trophies in my hands, I go to the garage sale lady that LOVED my purse – just to disappoint when I was a quarter short! Oh no! Am I going to have to give up THE GREATEST belt?!!? Alas, no, she reluctantly gave up on the quarter, but "red.neck Chic" was born…thank you garage sale lady!!! I later took her the quarter back - and also thanked her for being my inspiration (I'm not sure how she took that, but...)! Now I feature not only my handbags, but "unplugged lamplighters" (lamps out of almost anything!!!), "saddle tramp" (fashion), "splat fine dining" (kitchen and dining accessories with a twist!) and "u-turn" (really cool garage sale finds!)! I strive to make all of our "red.neck Chic" items out of recycled/upcycled materials - I firmly believe in the "reduce, reuse, recycle" movement - but while "upcycling" I don't see why you can't have some fun! Take something that started out "ho hum" and make it FANTASTIC...while adding some duct tape of course!!!

Check out Robelyn's BLOG!


Wednesday, May 27, 2009

The "Lovely Blog" Award

I received this award on Tuesday by three lovely blogs: Bags and Buds, Diary of a Young Designer, and Miss Knits. These are all wonderful blogs that you really need to check out. I'm honored that they thought of me while passing on this award!




Here are the rules to receiving this award...
~1. Accept the award, post it on your blog together with the name of the person who has granted the award, and his or her blog link.
~2. Pass the award to 15 other blogs that you’ve newly discovered.
~3. Remember to contact the bloggers to let them know they have been chosen for this award.


Here are the 15 blogs I've picked. Please take time and visit these blogs!



OK - who decided 15 was a good number? It's not actually as hard as it sounds!!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Zaaberry

Zaaberry is a wonderful childrens clothing shop just starting out on Etsy!! Ruby lives in Belchertown, MA. Real life keeps Ruby quite busy, but she loves to do custom orders. I wish my boys were still little! This kimono set is just too cute!! Please check out the rest of the items in Ruby's shop - there is an etsy mini at the bottom of the interview with more items from her shop.
#1. How did you decide on your shop name?
My husband came up with my shop name, and he got it from our 2 and half year old daughter. Last summer, when she was about 18 months old, she loved picking raspberries from our garden, but she would call them zaaberries (zah-berries). Since my sewing is mostly for and inspired by my kids, I wanted a shop name that was unique, but reflected their influence. Zaaberry just seemed like the perfect name.


#2. When did you start crafting?
I started crafting as a little girl sewing and knitting clothes for my Barbie dolls. My mother is an avid sewer and she taught me when I was pretty young. I really hit my stride after my daughter was born and I started making fun stuff for her. And now, my new mission is to create great boy clothes. I have an 8 month old son and find it nearly impossible to find boy clothes that don't scream BOY.


#3. Are there other crafts you would like to try?
I've done a lot of crafting. In college I learned to do stained glass and make silver jewelry and I've done a lot of knitting in the past. But I find I do best when I focus. So right now I'm really focused on sewing and designing, so no, for the time being there isn't any other craft I'm dying to try.



#4. What or who inspires you?
All my inspiration comes from my kids and fellow crafters.

#5. Do you have a day job?
I do have a day job. I have a degree in Biochemistry and work part time in a university research lab that studies environmental pollutants that interfere with our bodies normal hormonal regulation. Part of what I enjoy about making clothes for my kids is that some kids clothing, specifically kids pajamas, can be treated with chemicals that may interfere with development.


#6. Which is you favorite item and why?
The baby boy kimono and pant set was the most fun to make. As much I as I want to make stylish boy clothes, it can often be hard to even find fabric for boy clothes that isn't totally blue. So it was fun to try something a little different and be happy with the results.


Random 10 Tuesday

1) My new favorite quote:
A postive attitude may not solve all your problems. But it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort. Herm Albright



2) Love this lip balm - not to soft, not to hard - just right!! It can be found at Bubble Tub



3) Hope everyone in the US had a wonderful Monday off!! Got to love long weekends.



4) Going camping and riding (ATV's) this weekend!!! WOOHOO! Here's a picture from last year. Going to the same place.



5) Please check out the etsy mini's on the side bars. All the ones on the left side are brand new shops!!




6) This is a really great book! 7) You really need to read this blog post Different Drug Problem. The whole blog is wonderful, but this post is soooo true!!

8) Got four soap samples from AK Photo n Crafts.
I've tried the Honey Almond and really like it.

9) It rained all day yesterday. The farmer's aren't to happy - but I don't have to water my garden!



10) Nathalie at Recuperation Nathalie is giving away this wonderful tea holder!! This is another uncycling shop and blog that I found. Please click on the link and enter the give away - it ends on the 30th!!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

So So Rosey


So So Rosey is a wonderful crochet shop on Etsy. Jennie resides in Manassas VA, and has been on Etsy since November, 2007. When I first contacted this shop I didn't know I would be doing a Friday series on Upcycling, so it's quite cool that Jennie uses upcycled materials to make some of her products! Please check out So So Rosey!!




#1. How did you decide on your shop name?
My shop is named after my daughter, Sophia Rose. Had it not been for her, I would not have learned about Etsy in a parenting magazine- or had the time off from a very busy teaching career to pursue my love of crochet.


#2. When did you start crafting?
Hmmm...I think as soon as I could sit up! I have always had a creative streak and loved to make things, and I was fortunate to have great family support for my crafty pursuits. My grandmother taught me to crochet when I was about 10...over 30 years ago. oy!


#3. Are there other crafts you would like to try?
I love to play with paper and really enjoy making tags and wrapping my items. I would love to learn how to sew one day.


#4. What or who inspires you?
I get most of my inpiration from the different colors and patterns found in vintage textiles. It is also super inspiring to "hang out" with such a talented group of artists on Etsy every day :)


#5. Do you have a day job?
I'm a stay at home mom.


#6. What is the item in your shop you enjoyed making the most and why? http://www.etsy.com/view_transaction.php?transaction_id=15254090
This rug has been my favorite project to date. It was such an honor to make such a large custom item for someone! I worked on this rug daily for 5 weeks, so we really bonded :)


Inspirational Sunday

The Most Beautiful Flower:




The park bench was deserted as I sat down to read
Beneath the long, straggly branches of an old willow tree.
Disillusioned by life with good reason to frown
For the world was intent on dragging me down.
And if that weren't enough to ruin my day,
A young boy out of breath approached me, all tired from play.
He stood right before me with his head tilted down,
And said with great excitement, "Look what I found!".
In his hand was a flower, and what a pitiful sight.
With its petals all worn - not enough rain, or too little light.
Wanting him to take his dead flower and go off to play,
I faked a small smile and then shifted away.
But instead of retreating he sat next to my side,
And placed the flower to his nose, And declared with overacted surprise,
"It sure smells pretty and it's beautiful, too!.
"That's why I picked it - here, it's for you".
The weed before me was dying or dead.
not vibrant of colors: orange, yellow or red.
But I knew I must take it, or he might never leave.
So I reached for the flower, and replied, "Just what I need."
But instead of him placing the flower in my hand,
He held it mid-air without reason or plan.
It was then that I noticed for the very first time,
That weed-toting boy could not see: he was blind.
I heard my voice quiver; tears shone in the sun,
As I thanked him for picking the very best one.
"You're welcome," he smiled, and then ran off to play.
Unaware of the impact he'd had on my day.
I sat there and wondered how he managed to see.
A self-pitying woman beneath an old willow tree.
How did he know of my self-indulged plight?
Perhaps from his heart, he'd been blessed with true sight.
Through the eyes of a blind child, at last I could see -
The problem was not with the world; the problem was me.
And for all of those times I myself had been blind,
I vowed to see the beauty in life,
And appreciate every second that's mine.
And then I held that wilted flower up to my nose,
And breathed in the fragrance of a beautiful rose.
And smiled as I watched that young boy,
Another weed in his hand
About to change the life of an unsuspecting old man.

" Some people complain because GOD put thorns on roses, While others praise HIM for putting roses among thorns."


--- Anonymous --- Contributed by Annice LeGrande --- Maryland

Friday, May 22, 2009

Sat. Update

Found another wonderful soap shop: 2 Virgos Designs. Traded a raggedy bag for some of her soap.




The different scents are:
Coming up Roses
Pumpkin Pie (smells just like pumpkin pie)
Lavender Fields
An unlabelled free one.
Lavender Dreams
and she also sent some incense.

I've used the "roses" one and really like it. The soap lathers nicely, smells great (but not over powering) and I can tell that one bar will last quite a while.
There is nothing worse then spending $4.50 on a bar of soap that lasts for only 6 showers. I've had it happen! That won't happen with this soap. I am very pleased with this swap!!

I won 2 give aways in the last 2 months. Got both prizes this week. The coin purse is from Tomato Tea, a wonderful shop on "Folksy". The coin purse is just the right size!! Love the little heart button attached!


The pendant is from a Give Away I entered on a wonderful blog: Jackkyll Scraps . She has an amazing shop: Suspended Imagination. I love pendants & flowers. Still have to decide what to hang it from.

Please visit the shops that have Etsy Mini's on the sidebars. All the ones on the left side are brand new shops!!
Hope everyone is having an awesome weekend!!

Treasure Hunt

Don't forget about the Treasure Hunt happening in my SHOP today. The treasure chest is hidden in four listings. You can purchase those listings for 25% off - not including shipping.

Here is the link to the whole list of shops participating in the Treasure Hunt:

Please take time to visit the shops!!


Thursday, May 21, 2009

UpCycling/Recycling 1

Been Bead is an upcycling shop I found on Etsy. Here is what she says about her shop:
I have always believed in the truism, waste not , want not. And from the get go, I've been an artist: voila, recycling only makes sense. To have it make cents, too, is incredible.

I found Etsy through an article in the magazine, "Cloth,Paper, Scissors" and have been on it one year. I love the connections, the shopping, the inspiration it provides and the opportunity to sell my work. I am completely enthralled with the fact that you can make something, photograph it yourself and in minutes have it out there worldwide. It's amazing.






Ray of Hope is another upcycling shop:
My name is Laurie, I have a 7 soon to be 8 year old daughter, named Amelia. I work a 6 hr. a day job, have a Business Services Company that I started in 1996, and (2) Etsy Shops: GiftsAndTalents and RayOfHope.

I have been doing Art since I was 3 years old. It is my Life Long Desire to do my Art Full Time. I am very close to realizing that Dream. I started Up/Re Cycling different things just to see if you could take something that is completely Ordinary and turn it in to something Unique and Fun! I am now into doing different kinds of Art and my Favorite Art right now is Decoupaged Recipe Boxes, Switch Plate Covers and Clothespin Clips. Check out GiftsAndTalents.etsy.com for these items. I Love making Custom Boxes, etc. I let My Customers choose their own papers and it is always Fun to see the papers they choose and how they come out on the Boxes, etc. Meanwhile, I have some Great Bargains at RayOfHope. All of these Items are One of a Kind and will Never be made again.




Please check back next Friday for two more shops that recycle/upcycle.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Upcycling vs Recycling

A while back I won a gift certificate for a shop on Etsy and used it to buy an upcycled bag. It was made from a gently used tank top. This got me thinking about recycling and upcycling. What's the difference? Is there one? Only way to find out is to ask!! So I contacted several shops to find out their opinions. Here are some quotes from some of the shops:


"Up cycling is taking something like for example a shirt that is a bit fad and adding some frills and bits to it to add some pizazz to it and make more fashionable. Or to take something old,unwanted and end of the line and turn it into something new and beautiful just by mixing and rearranging with the existing parts and pieces and sometimes by adding some new.
Recycling: Is more complicated, it involves chemicals proceduresEX: You can obtain fabric from plastic soda bottle and this means recycling them.
In short upcycled takes no transformation and recycling takes a transformation."

"Upcyle: is taking something new, that when you look at it you say to yourself "that big ugly brown button has to go" " I think I will embellish this sweater using my YoYos I have made" . WaLa! An upcycled sweater . Recycled is, taking something that has already been worn, used, or old etc. and reusing it for another purpose or melting something down to make new things. example: Milk Bottles etc."

"Up cycling is taking something that no longer has use or value(disposable) and forging or shaping it into something that has greater use or value. Recycling is processing used items such as paper, plastic, glass, textile, electronics and metal to prevent or reduce the consumption of raw materials which have greater or other uses. "

Here are some shops that Upcycle!








"I always understood "upcycling" as a different word for "re-purposing." So finding a new use fo an old object in a way that the first life is recongnizable in it' second life. Recycling, I think of as being more transforming a product into something completely different. I guess it can be boiled down to the difference of how much needs to be done to the original object before it can become a new object."


"It is to my understanding that the process of recycling uses the transfer of energy to change the physical state and components of the item to them recreate another item similar. Say for instance and aluminum can. Once melted down into a liquid it is then used to make other similar cans. With upcycling it is a bit different. There is no energy used to create a new item. You may take thick plastic and cut it down to paper size print words onto it and create a book. Or taking 20 oz soda tops and creating a mosaic of an influential person, both of which are not using energy to change the physical state of the item, and turning it into something more valuable."

Does everyone understand the difference now? I think I do, just don't ask me to put it down on paper. LOL Here are some shops that Recycle!






Come back tomorrow and meet two shops that either upcycle or recycle. (Please check in the comments - Sinclair has great definitions for each)

On a side note: Friday I am joining a Treasure Hunt on Etsy. There are lots of shops participating. We all have hidden a picture of a treasure chest in some of our listings in our shops. When you find the treasure chest you can purchase that item at a discount. Each shop will have the special in the shop announcement - so make sure you read each one - they will all be different.


I will have 4 treasure chests hidden in my shop and I'm offering 25% off each of those items (not including shipping). Mine will only start when I get home from my bus run & can "hide" the treasure chests and make the announcement in my shop.


Here is the link to the blog that will have all the shops listed and what they are offering as discounts (the list will be posted Friday morning): Etsy Treasure Hunt


Please check out my shop and all the other participating!! Happy hunting!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

A Second Time

A Second Time is a steampunk shop on Etsy. Joan lives in Calgary, Alberta Canada and has been on Etsy since December. This shops has everything from earrings, bracelets, charms, lockets to brooches and pins. It's a must see shop - Joan's imagination is amazing!! She also has a BLOG with updates on what she is doing and new items in her shop.



#1. How did you decide on your shop name?
It was easy! Since most of my items use repurposed watches and clocks, it seemed appropriate. Each piece is getting “A Second Time” around.


#2. When did you start crafting?
I suppose as a child…I’ve done things creative as long as I can remember…in fact, I made jewellery pieces from discarded watch parts when I was probably 6 or 7 years old…a VERY long time ago! I still have the very first piece I made, a brooch, sitting on my desk. I’ve done things with sewing & fabric, paper crafting, painting, calligraphy, clay, flowers design, knitting, cross stitch, needlepoint, jewellery design and I’m sure other things that I’ve forgotten to mention.


#3. Are there other crafts you would like to try?
Oh, always! There just often aren’t enough hours in the day! I’m always open to trying new things and exploring different ideas. I have so many ideas for things; again, it’s about not having enough time to try them out.


#4. What or who inspires you?
I think the pieces themselves invoke the most inspiration. They tend to ‘speak’ as to what will come from them.


#5. Do you have a day job?
This is my day job, my evening job, and my weekend job! That and fitting in all the other things one has to do and take care. I love the freedom that my Etsy store allows me. I get to pick what hours of the day I actually ‘work’ and can plan my other interests and activities around that. I do have a routine, though. I take care of my Etsy shop first thing in the morning while I’m having coffee…checking and replying to emails and orders, getting packaging ready and organizing for the day. Now that the weather is a little nicer, and we can look forward to our short summer, I usually head outside for a while and ‘play’ in the yard and garden…that’s another thing I love to do. The rest of the day usually just falls into place after that. I’ve committed to being in a few Markets in the next little while, so I have been spending quite a bit of time getting my inventory built up for those. I never really feel like I’m working because I really enjoy what I’m doing.


#6. What is the item in your shop you enjoyed making the most and why?
I like making everything…if I didn’t, I just couldn’t make it come together. The motorcycles are fun, probably because we like to ride in real life when time and weather permits us to indulge.





Monday, May 18, 2009

Random 10 Tuesday

Sometimes on Tuesday I have trouble coming up with enough material for a whole post. So I'm going to start "Random Ten Tuesday" and see how it goes.

1) Logan (son 2) broke his finger at work on Sat. This means at least 6 weeks in a splint.

2) Every weekend should be a long weekend.

3) We had sunshine for 2.5 days in a row!!! Why do we feel more energetic when the sun is shining?




4) Got the grass mowed today, supposed to rain tomorrow. It takes about 2.5 hours to mow the lawn and the 1/2 mile drive way with 2 six foot mowers.

5) OK - it's hard to come up with 10 random things to list. Might have to make it a shorter list next time.

6) What's the difference between Recycling & Up Cycling? If you know please tell me.

7) Aren't yellow Canaries cute?

8)I'm watching Dr. Phil with hubby as I'm making my list. Bo - am I glad we talked to our children about drinking & driving. Scarey show today.



9) Got the garden seeded. Doesn't look like much now, but hopefully in a few weeks I can post pics of plants p0king out of the ground.

10) I need 10 shops to donate their etsy mini's for on the right side of my blog next week - anyone interested? Or is anyone interested in having a give away on my other blog?






















Sunday, May 17, 2009

Lovelee Soaps

LoveLee Soaps has been on Etsy since Oct. 2007!! Leeana resides in Daytona Beach, Florida. She also has a BLOG where you can see her new soaps, which look good enough to eat!! Leeana carries soaps, lip balm, body butter, solid lotions, "food soaps" (look good enough to eat) and more.


#1. How did you decide on your shop name?
I wanted a name that included the word soap and something personal. I took the word lovely and switched it to LoveLee because my name begins with Lee

#2. When did you start crafting?
I have been crafting ever since I can remember. I come from a family of creative entrepreneurs. Many of them have their own businesses so I think it's in my blood. Also someone is always making something at the house. I started out by helping my mother with her Etsy shop, WildOliveKids, and she kept pushing me to start an Etsy shop with my bath and body products. She didn't tell me that it would take over my life (and her house). I think she's having second thoughts now.

#3. Are there other crafts you would like to try?
So many crafts so little time. I would love to try pottery, stamp making and most important sewing!

#4. What or who inspires you?
I am inspired by so many things! I love bright colors, fun shapes, candy stores, circus, textures, and even bakery books.




#5. Do you have a day job?
Right now I am currently in my first year of college majoring in Graphic Design and keeping up with LoveLeeSoaps.


#6. What is the item in your shop you enjoyed making the most and why?
Right now it would have to be the new sweet pink sugar bird soap. It is very special because I used a vintage bird that is my mothers from her childhood to make the mold.
http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=23815798



Here are some more amazing products in Leeana's shop. Just click on the picture and it will take your there!!




How Will You be Remembered

I was sent this in an email.  Quite often I read these emails and delete them, but this story is a keeper.  Just shows what a difference one person can make in someones life by doing an act of kindness when you see someone in need.  A good Sunday School Lesson.


Red Marbles 

I was at the corner grocery store buying some early potatoes. I noticed a small boy, delicate of bone and feature, ragged but clean, hungrily apprising a basket of freshly picked green peas. 

I paid for my potatoes, but was also drawn to the display of fresh green peas. I am a pushover for creamed peas and new potatoes. 

Pondering the peas, I couldn't help overhearing the conversation between Mr. Miller (the store owner) and the ragged boy next to me. 

'Hello, Barry, how are you today?' 

'Hello, Mr. Miller. Fine, thank you. Just admiring them peas. They sure look good.' 

'They are good, Barry. How's your Ma?' 

'Fine. Getting stronger all the time.' 

'Good. Anything I can help you with?' 

'No, Sir. Just admiring the peas.' 

'Would you like to take some home?' asked Mr. Miller. 

'No, sir. Got nothing to pay for 'em with.' 
'Well, what have you to trade me for some of those peas?' 

'All I have is my prize marble here.' 

'Is that right? Let me see it,' said Miller. 

'Here 'tis. She's a dandy.' 

'I can see that. Hmm mmm, only thing is this one is blue and I sort of go for red. Do you have a red one like this at home?' the store owner asked. 

'Not 'zackley, but almost.' 

'Tell you what. Take this sack of peas home with you and next trip this way let me look at that red marble,' Mr. Miller told the boy. 

'Sure will. Thanks, Mr. Miller.' 

Mrs. Miller, who had been standing nearby, came over to help me. 

With a smile, she said, 'There are two other boys like him in our community, all three are in very poor circumstances. Jim just loves to bargain with them for peas, apples, tomatoes or whatever. When they come back with their red marbles, and they always do, he decides he doesn't like red after all and he sends them home with a bag of produce for a green marble or an orange one, when they come on their next trip to the store.'

I left the store smiling to myself, impressed with this man. A short time later I moved to Colorado , but I never forgot the story of this man, the boys and their bartering for marbles. 

Several years went by, each more rapid than the previous one. Just recently I had occasion to visit some old friends in that community, and while I was there learned that Mr. Miller had died. They were having his visitation that evening, and knowing my friends wanted to go, I agreed to accompany them. Upon arrival at the mortuary, we fell into line to meet the relatives of the deceased and to offer whatever words of comfort we could. 

Ahead of us in line were three young men. One was in an army uniform and the other two wore nice haircuts, dark suits and white shirts. All were very professional looking. They approached Mrs. Miller, standing composed and smiling by her husband's casket. Each of the young men hugged her, kissed her on the cheek, spoke briefly with her and moved on to the casket. 

Her misty light blue eyes followed them as, one by one, each young man stopped briefly and placed his own warm hand over the cold pale hand in the casket. Each left the mortuary awkwardly, wiping his eyes. 

Our turn came to meet Mrs. Miller. I told her who I was and reminded her of the story from those many years ago and what she had told me about her husband's bartering for marbles. With her eyes glistening, she took my hand and led me to the casket. 

'Those three young men who just left were the boys I told you about. They just told me how they appreciated the things Jim 'traded' them. Now, at last, when Jim could not change his mind about color or size, they came to pay their debt. We've never had a great deal of the wealth of this world,' she confided, 'but right now Jim would consider himself the richest man in Idaho.' 

With loving gentleness, she lifted the lifeless fingers of her deceased husband. Resting underneath were three exquisitely shined red marbles. 

The Moral: We will not be remembered by our words, but by our kind deeds. Life is not measured by the breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath. 

Friday, May 15, 2009

Look what I did!!

Well I finally bought flowers for my deck boxes, but won't be able to plant them just yet. Would have to cover them every night for a while, and that's just too much work.



We usually plant flowers and the garden on the May long weekend, however because of the rain we had during the week and the really cool temps every day - that just isn't going to happen. Got my asparagus roots in the mail the other day too, really need to get into the garden!!

Was in the craft room looking around trying to figure out something to do (other than clean it up) and decided to make a small bag for my friends 6 year old for her birthday. Something to put the hop scotch game in, or whatever little girls put in bags. She happens to like blue and pink so I thought I could use some jean squares I had and some left over pink flannel from a previous bag I had made. This is my first attempt at making yoyo's, and probably my last. LOL

What do you think?
Son one just got home for the weekend. He's working in the city, where he is going to college, for the summer for a company that designs and builds Fire Trucks!! He found out during the week that he will be working on the new fire truck for our home town. How cool is that!!


Here is a strange quiz for you to try. If you figure out how it works, let me know please!! Have a great long weekend!!

YOUR AGE BY CHOCOLATE MATH
This is pretty neat.
DON'T CHEAT BY SCROLLING DOWN FIRST!
It takes less than a minute .
Work this out as you read .
Be sure you don't read the bottom until you've worked it out!

1. First of all, pick the number of times a week that you would like to have chocolate (more than once but less than 10)


2. Multiply this number by 2 (just to be bold)


3. Add 5


4. Multiply it by 50 -- I'll wait while you get the calculator


5. If you have already had your birthday this year add 1759 ..
If you haven't, add 1758.


6. Now subtract the four digit year that you were born.

You should have a three digit number
The first digit of this was your original number
(i.e., how many times you want to have chocolate each week).
The next two numbers are
YOUR AGE! (Oh YES, it is!!!!!)

Thursday, May 14, 2009

NEW fantastic finds

IT'S A LONG WEEKEND!!!
The shops that I want to show you today are all new, and waiting for their first sale. They are amazing shops!! Please take the time to visit their shop and see all their wonderful items!!


Sheep Space is from the UK and offers hand spun yarn in amazing colors.







Jennifer Labella Art is from Canada, has the most amazing water color paintings.






Bliss in a Tea Cup is from Canada and has a wonderful collection of treasures and things to make us smile.







Mill Creek Primitivesis from Streator and have a unique collection of primitive signs and folkart items.









Jazzy Baggy is from Detroit and has unique one of a kind bags and wristlets.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Recycling Crafts (sorta)



The title for this blog has to be one of my favorites: Crafty Bitch 101. It's a really great blog that I visit almost daily. Rhonda always has great posts and has a wonderful shop on Etsy The Junk Stop where she make some of her items using recycled materials!! It's the coolest shop - trust me!
But - back to why I'm posting about Rhonda's blog. She is having a "Recycled Craft Challenge".
Here is how it works. First, you must register. (Open to everyone worldwide!) The deadline for registration is June 1, 2009. To register, send an e-mail to rhondablogs [!at] gmail [!dot] com with "Recycled Craft Challenge" in the subject line. You can also enter by purchasing a challenge packet via Her Etsy Shop, for just the 20 cent cost of the listing fee. (You can find the listing in the FREECYCLE section!) If entering via e-mail, be sure to include your mailing address, so she know where to send your challenge packet!

For the rest of the rules and how it works please check out Rhonda's blog!! I'm going to do it - it sounds like so much fun, and I need something to motivate me creatively. This will do it. Please come and join me!!
Here are some of the items in her shop.





Hmmmm. I was just thinking - This could be an annual event!! Would anyone be interested in doing this again?

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Dazzled Beader

Dazzled Beader is a wonderful jewelry shop on Etsy. Melissa is from Janesville, Wisconsin and has been on Etsy since February! Welcome to Etsy!! Melissa has a BLOG. It features new offers and specials. 10% of all proceeds from her Etsy shop goes to the humane society. She decided to write stories about animals on her blog in addition to information about her newest listings.


#1 How did you decide on your shop name?
I got into making jewelry when I joined a group of women called Bead Dazzlers. We'd get together regularly and make jewelry and eat and talk. I was hooked. Since my Bead Dazzlers friends dazzled me into beading, I decided Dazzled Beader Designs was a great name for my shop.


#2 When did you start crafting?
I've always liked arts and crafts. As a youth, I was in 4-H and did a lot of drawing, painting, photography, floral design and macrame. I started making jewelry a year and a half ago when I joined the Bead Dazzlers group. I have learned so much since.



#3 Are there other crafts you'd like to try?
Glass bead making sounds interesting or maybe I'd like to take up crocheting again. I admire people who can sew, I've never had much patience or luck with sewing.



#4 What or who inspires you?
I get inspired by seeing what kind of jewelry my friends are making. I also get inspired when I see all sorts of pretty beads and chain online and in catalogs. I have a notebook I draw design ideas in when I'm inspired.


#5 Do you have a day job?
I have a day job. I work as a graphic artist for a newspaper. I design the ads and lay out the paper.


#6 Which item in your shop did you enjoy making the most and why?
The Stunning Symphony jewelry set. It was a great experience in thinking outside the box and became one of my most unique pieces. I worked hard practicing making many note links and treble clef pendants on my wig jig before I moved on to the final piece. I'm pleased with the result.



Melissa has a wonderful give away happening on her blog!! It's this amazing bracelet! Click on the picture and it will take you to the give away. The rules are easy - just follow her blog and an extra entry pick your favorite item from her shop and leave a comment telling her what it is. Please check it out!!



Photobucket

Monday, May 11, 2009

Look What I Got!!

This is my second bag in the bag swap I hosted. Isn't it Great?!!



It was made by Pamela who has a wonderful shop Aural Studios and also a shop she has just started on Etsy Outlandish Gear. She designs her own patterns and uses upcycled materials mixed with new materials. This bag is 90% up cycled and 10% new. The binding was hand cut and stiched. Amazing!! Pamela sent along a sheet explaining what the bag was made out of & how to take care of it. It's the perfect size to carry your essentials, and still make it possible to say "NO" when the family asks if you have room to carry their stuff too. I love it!!



I have a friend who has a 6 year old daughter. I have 2 boys and so have no idea what a little girl could possibly want for her 7th birthday. In desperation I went on the Etsy forums for help. There were so many people with wonderful ideas it was hard to choose. But then someone suggested this hop scotch game! So I checked with the mom - yes the little girl did play hop scotch!!


I couldn't believe that game was still around. I remember playing it at school, but thats - well - um - many years ago?! So I bought this game from Kid -N Around Creations. For an extra dollar I could get her name embroidered onto the bag. It was worth the extra buck!! It's wonderful. Hope she likes her birthday present!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Dierdrelefae

Dierdrelefae is an amazing shop on Etsy. I got to know about this shop when I entered a give away for a Gift Cert. and won!! I bought a lovely upcycled bag made from a gently used tank top!! I love it!

Amber has started a wonderful clothing line, and also has amazing jewelry and prints. She has been on Etsy since June 2007 and resides in Georgia.




#1. How did you decide on your shop name?
When I was in college, my first PhotoShop project, I merged a pickle and a panda. The pickled panda name stuck with me and when I opened up shop, I knew I had to name it after that project.


#2. When did you start crafting?
I've always been a lover of creating whatever I could, ever since I was a little girl. I used to collect all kinds of "treasures" (trash) and convert it into all sorts of things.


#3. What or who inspires you?
Everything! Plus I have this crazy imagination, that helps a lot! Some things I make are inspired from TV shows or stories I've written.




#4. Do you have a day job?
Oh yeah, I have the best job ever: taking care of my son (born 5-16-08), two dogs, hubbie, and the house 24/7!


#5. What is the item in your shop you enjoyed making the most and why?

My clothing! Having my own clothing line is one of the many things I have always wanted to do, and I'm so excited that I'm finally doing it!





 

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