So, here I am.....

The girl that said she'd never blog. The far from computer savvy girl that is always up for a challenge despite a serious lack of time.My blog goals. Do I have blogging goals? Hmmm, I guess I should. So I pledge to be funny, lighthearted, not vent or complain to much and maybe just maybe share a crumb of wit and wisdom on occassion.I will most likely chat about etsy, my addiction and muse. the incredible artsists and friends I have found in a community that oozes with creativity, friendship, support and a home for all things handmade.You will hear me ramble about the insanity of my life including my 3 boys, ages 12, 16 and 53. Yes, that last one I am married to, but trust me, he is just as much boy as man. After 17 years of marriage I find myself raising him along with them. Then again, he would probably say the same of me at times. I will often speak of friends I would go to the ends of the earth for and a family that more often than not defines dysfunction. Then again, I strongly believe a functional family is the stuff legends are made of.I am a lover of music of all kinds and not so much the TV ( except maybe Glee). I have an addiction to handmade glass, especially venetian and lampwork beads as well as unique pottery. I have made a concerted effort to tame my jewelry fetish with my own creations which can be seen at you haven't figured out by now, I can jabber my jaws and my fingers as if someone could care what I have to say.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

It's A good Thing!

We all know who's line that is. Yep, the one, the only


If you live in a cave and avoid any and all media coverage, maybe you don't know her on a first time basis. Oh, wait, you are here and on line, and most likey an etsy seller, shopper or frequenter, so forget that last statement. of course you know "the Martha"!

Well, now "the Martha" is getting to know etsy. The Martha Stewart Show will be featuring etsy, in all it's glory, this Friday. You can get the full story here. Name dropping is not my usual m.o. but it seems one of our own "hussies" will have the honor of being mention durting this segment. The original "Girl Savage".

I will admit, I have been green with envy of the girls' ability to land on the etsy front page, in treasuries, the subject of endless blogs, etc. However, that envy is always tempered with the utmost congratulatory glee. She does fantastic, custom, special, unique work.
Feltidermy is not something you can find just anywhere!

The hussy's, being hussies by nature, have clamoured with excitement since the announcement. This, of course, includes our own, jump on the bandwagon attitude. I mean seriously, it's Martha!!!!! Etsy on Martha is bound to bring people to etsy in droves, .............packs,.............herds. Creative people, art/craft/dyi people, people whom understand and appreciate the concept of "buy handmade".

This brings us to the heart of the matter. The Hussies are celebrating. Treasuries, sales, forum threads, shop announcements, the works. We have pulled out all the stops and rolled out the red carpet. ( oh, wait, we just rolled that up after the Oscars). We are supporting, cheering and celebrating the wonderful Girl Savage and others lucky enough to get the nod. We are giving great deals on our own items to mark the special occassion, we have shown our best side in our effort to welcom the occassion. Hell, Karma even uveiled a special trollbie.

Martha is a Hussy at Heart

So tune in on Friday, and/or its replay on Monday (Fine Living Network). Support etsy, keep spreading the word about this great site, and check out all the Hussy regalia. Watch this blog for an update of the sale announcements, treasuries and other Martha related news.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Pay Attention to the Man Behind the Curtain

yes, pay very close attention. You see, lately, even more than usual, I have that heavy, weighing feeling that we're not in Kansas anymore. I think they officially call it adulthood, but I myself keep checking the sky for flying monkeys.

Sick kids, fighting the system, tax season, winter doldrums and a serious need to kick my own ass for lacking the self discipline to track my etsy activities ( always goes back to the tax man, always) have left me in need of some ruby slippers. We all know my drum has a different beat though, so I had to go with RubyShoes. Believe me, there is magic in her Kansas! She does things with polymer clay the Wizard would never dream of. No smoke and mirrors here, just plain talent.

I first met RubyShoesSam on the Military Homefront Street team thread. Every Monday they have a little Monday Madness party, and I stopped in for a few. What a fun group ( that's its own seperate post, toot those people's horns) Well, madness it was! I have been "mad" for this and this, and this and this ever since. Imagine, my madness when you check out all the great shops on this team.

So, as usual, I waited and lost out on this lovely.
Take it from me. Don't wait for the house to fall on you to get your ruby slippers, buy them, and fast. Afterall, the yellow Brick Road awaits. I hope to return to Kansas one day soon with a handful of these magic pendants to inspire my own creations with them. Auntie Emm will be thrilled

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Me and Netta June

What a perfect match. What a perfect Valentine. After a terrible, "Mom Goes on Strike" day Wednesday, I could not have spent a better Valentine's Day Thursday. Okay, maybe I could have afforded to skip the loveless relationship with the middle schoolers I was teaching all day that day, but then again, they're middle schoolers. If you loved them it would be a sure sign something was wrong, you or them. However, the thought of a night with my Netta was getting me through.

Now, you may be a bit confused. Maybe this talk of "my Netta" is making you scratch your head a bit, well, truth be told, she's not "MY" Netta. She is the 6 month old, permajoyful, cute as a button, fill your heart with warmth, betcha can't help but smile little baby girl of my Cousin and his wife. Yes, I will admit, all predjudice aside, that she is one of the cutest, happiest babies I have ever experienced. And she was mine, all mine for four lovely hours Thursday night.

We played, we laughed, she cooed. I was tired, exhausted really, and looking at another day filled with middle school ingrates, but I enjoyed every minute of it. The rocking, the cuddling, the feeding, even the diaper changing was memorable
(okay, I really need to get out more). It has been a looong time since I had a baby to care for. I think I really enjoy this "other's babies" thing. Knowing you are ( reluctantly) giving her back. Not the one walking the floors, changing millions of diapers, easing her teething, pumping breast milk, unable to find 10 minutes to shower, saving for college and generally responsible for raising a healthy, happy, productive adult rally adds to the joy of the experience. The added bonus of walking in your own front door, looking at your own preteens and thanking God they are fairly self-sufficient, healthy, happy and on their way to that productive adult stage has an extra satisfying edge.

How does this all tie in several days later? Well, I find myself thinking of babies, reminiscing about my own and wanting to indulge others. Where do I start? An etsy search of course. 4,452 items that is. Now, I don;t have that kind of time, but boy, it sure is fun perusing much of it. Yet it all leads back to Pook.
Pook is a very talented half of PookThy. She is hands down, my favorite Canadian gal. She talks a mile a minute, has that great "eh" that rolls of her tongue after every sentence and just oozes sewing talent to boot. Her ability to thrift shop and turn an old table cloth or spread into this is just amazing.

Now, I encourage you all to meet Pook. Talk with her. Fall in love with her. It's inevitable. Her effervescense is contagious. Her baby clothes amazing and her purses stunning. I only wish I could buy her out and dress Netta in all her glory. In the meantime, I wait for those occassion when i can and I keep toasy warm on a Chicago winter's day with this.
Now I'm off to weasle another great babysitting experience out of Netta's parents.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

It's That time Again ( I hope)

I have just been under the time crunch forever. All of a sudden, it was here. Home Show time. Then, once again, as usual, my life got in the way.
So I have spent a week vascilating between doing my regularly schedule open house, or postponing til mid April. I fear a postponement for so many reasons. Life, beig the biggest. I just never know what life is gonna bring, or should I say kick my ass with. More often than not, my hopes for a showing are dashed for a myriad reasons. I just hate to take that chance. However, is a week enough notice? A people booked solid? Will I be wasting my time and money?

There's just no telling. So, after frantic printing, shopping, peeling, sticking, stuffing and posting, it's done. i will be having my usual February showing. Now, let's all pray ( novenas welcome. you know who you are) that the snow ends, the bitter cold lifts and the customers show ( and buy)

I have some great new items, and some tried and true staples. the food will be scrumptous, the wine will be flowing and the goods will sparkle. if that's not enough, a coupon for use at my etsy store is the "pies de la resistence" ( okay, sorry, I took Spanish)

For those of you in the Chicagoland area, come on by. Google it, call or just meander aver for a glass of wine, a good hearty laugh, a snack or two, and who knows, yuou may just find that perfect Christmas, I mena Valentie's, no I mean, easter, Mother's Day, Birthday, memorial day, Arbor Day, Independence day, Armitise day, D-day, gift. or maybe just a little sumin' sumin' for yourself.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Give and Take

seems to be the theme of the weekend for me. For the first time in weeks I actually flowed creatively this weekend. Creating new pieces is always relaxing for me. If I could only say the same about photographing them.It seems this piece was both my alli and nemesis this weekend

Now, this led to my first mistake of the weekend (only a matter of time til the inevitable). I should have followed my head and continued on my productive journey, but nooooooo, my heart convinced me to participate in the infamous SNS Sale on etsy. What ensued was a frantic mad dash of photography that proved as uncooperative as a two year old with an purple crayon
(we all know how that one ends).

I know by now there is no need to bore you with the intricate details. We are all adults. We know it always gets worse before it gets better, and it did. Suffice it to say, it did get better. It had to get better. I MADE it get better.

And now we return to the regularly scheduled program. It's Sunday night, beef stew is on the stove, it's bitter cold outside and I am rewarded with this. Oh, there's more, but as usual I have to have things special. I never have been one to conform, why start now.
Jpat is the perfect fit for me. She is the master of non-conformists. She loves custom orders and delights in accomodating the most finicky of customers. Now, I have yet to find an item in her shop I don't like, so why is it that fincky rears it's ugly head? well, becasue it can!
So, I admit to indecisiveness and an order larger than necessary, but that seems to be my M.O. I will spend this busy week awaiting this

, and this(sorta) and yet a few others to arrive. See, that's the thing. Janese will take those lovely, incredible fabrics, do that thing she does ( that no one else does quite like she) and give you magic.
Yep, it's magic.
Why? you ask.
well first off, it involves sewing. Anyone who knows me, knows I consider that akin to magic.
secondly, she does it perfect. time and time again. perfect fabric, perfect shape, perfect quality, perfect service.

So yes, I sold this, and this, and have a few irons in the fire. I made these beauties too. However, the highlight of this weekend will be the arrival of my new purse. On that note, I dare you. Double Dog dare you to go here. You to will be pining for your mailman to arrive.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Super Gini!

So, you know how everyone stops, stares into the sky, points and ponders what it could be as Superman flys by? Well, the same thing happens when people meet Gini. My dear friend Gini. I swear, if you listen keenly, you can hear the rumbling...."It's a fish, it's a plane, no, it's SuperGini! Why, you may ask, are people so enamored? It's out of their control, hence the name, Super Gini!

Jack of all trades, master of many. In the year I have known Gini, there is nothing she won't do. Adventure seems to be her middle name. From Deep Sea diving to metalsmithing, this girl can talk in a plane full of people in a tornado with one hand tied behind her back. If that's not enough, she'll make you one of these.

Guaranteed to make you shoot Coca Cola out your nose, no practical joke or witty remark goes unnoticed. This girl can turn a phrase on a dime. Maybe it's all those years in the air traffic tower, maybe it's all that time spent searching for Bikini Bottom ( Spongebob's homeland), maybe it's all those years in support of a military spouse, but her warped sense of humor is right up my alley. Afterall, it's not every gal that perpetually searches for the Missouri Ocean.

Now, I have been making jewelry for more than a decade now, and have always been self taught. Gini has opened a whole new jewelry world to me. Her creativity is overflowing and ideas run faster than she has time to enact them. I have watched her produce amazing things from the simplest of supplies.

She has taught me many a trick of the trade and continually impresses me with creations like this

I could wax poetic about her compassionate ear, her hysterical humor and her uncanny ability to make you think you've been lifelong friends within 5 minutes of meeting, but she will just crack wise on me. So, the best I can say is, find out for yourself. You won't be disappointed.

Monday, February 4, 2008

A Great Lady

I have met a really talented lady on etsy. We actually met a year or so ago, but have recently reaquainted. She really impresses me, but then again, having two adolescent boys I am ( more often than not) proud of, any woman willing to have 2 children in 13 months deserves more than admiration. A padded cell comes to mind.
regardless of the reasons, Lynette, of Originals by Lynette is that woman.
She has a fantastic eye when it comes to repurposing. She has style and grace, not to mention her affection for vintage evidenced here

and through her shop.

It's not enough that she create beautiful accessories by day (or sometimes night), but she is a loving mom to Charlie and Nancy, a wife to the infamous TonyO ( this alone should garner a medal of honor), a sales consultant to a start up family business and still finds time to hang with some good friends.

So, outside of dazzling me with her charms (or beautiful bobbies), she helps me to reflect on my own limitations. Between recent conversations and a little help form my recent weekend jaunt (a story in itself), I have reaffirmed some strong beliefs that have been brewing for some time.
Yep, there's no denying it. I am soooo glad I am past that stage of my life. It may be that it is greatly responsible for my ability to multitask, and if so, well worth it, but I have no desire to go back to that part of my life. Now, I love kids. All kids (okay, most kids) more than the average person. As I said, I even have 2 of my own. I spend the better part of my life with children in some capacity. But, as I listen to Lynette spin a tale of her day, I am reminded of the reality of it. You see, as they get older, and more independent, especially their mouths and attitudes, you often long for the sweet hugs, the grape jelly kisses and copiloting aircraft with a full cargo hold of peas into a tiny mouth. What is so easily rose-colored is the bathroom crimes not so contained to it's owner, 30 second showers being a luxury of "alone time", laying your life on the line for the opportunity to run a errand your loving husband insists on taking care of as a favor to you, because that 3 word exchange with the checker at Walgreens is worth a drive in a foot of snow. Oh, the desperation for an adult conversation that doesn't have the word tinkle, Dora or Barney in it.
So, listening to Lynette lamnet about her day coupled with a 2 day jaunt to one of those Family" resorts in tourist trap USA, I have reaffirmed my appreciation for the age my children are. Watching parents tote half the house everywhere they go and feel the need for 6 pair of eyes able to work independent of each other at all times, I slink into a hot tub, Seabreeze in hand and wonder just which attraction my two are currently enjoying (indepndent of my cautious eye). I read a magazine leisurely poolside as they trot off to do whatever it is they do.
Yes, I have the ocassional twinge when I see the belly laugh of a 3 year old, but it fades quickly as I turn my head and catch glimpse of a mom , childs feet in one hand, clean diaper clutched in teeth, reach to hand another a snack while balancing the sippy cup waiting to be filled with one knee and think, WOW! I have no desire to go back to that part of my life and I take another sip of that seabreeze.

So, I'm not quite sure how, with her children at their tender ages, and a husband in need of her stellar salesmanship, Lynette finds time for her fancies, but she does. And, if that's not enough, she has time for this too!

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Chain, Chain, Chain,,,,

Yep, now you've got that song running through your head, I just know it! That's okay, at least it's an upbeat tune. Would you rather I start with "99 bottles of Beer" or "I Found a Peanut" to rustle the memories of an old cross country family truckster vacation?.....I didn't think so.

by the lovely and talented avionmaille

So, I leave you with my originally intended head warping verse and images it now conjures for me. Chainmaille. I have to admit, I have fallen for it hook, weave and ringers. It's silky feel, it's versatility, not to mention affordability.
Yep, I'm sold!
Now, I will admit, I am mostly a sterling or fine silver sort of a gal. This is not a problem. Plenty of "maille", as it's known by its creators, is constructed of fine metals. Yet, what I love about Lanie's creations, is that usually they're not. This lends itself to affordability and a rainbow of color combinations not available in fine metals. Rest assured, the annondized aluminum and copper is sturdy and beautiful, without a doubt, not to mention light as a feather.

Now, etsy introduced me to chainmaille as an art form, but Avion (as she is known by many etsians) made me a fan. After watching the construction first hand this fall, I have a newfound respect for the time and effort put into each and every creation, not to mention the toll it takes on the eyes. This is not a craft I am likely to undertake anytime soon.

Riddled with patience, detail and history, Chainmaille weaves date back thousands of years with uses that amaze this modern day gal. Oh, don't worry, as much as I'd love to, you won't have to witness me walking down mainstreet it one of these anytime soon.(at least not until this diet is more successful), but you can almost always find me sporting one of these