Tuesday, September 29, 2009

My Megan Turned 15 Today!

Today was a big occasion. My little Meggy turned 15. At 11.15pm on September 29th 1994 a little person came into my life and changed it forever. She has made it an interesting and amusing ride ever since. I have included a few pictures of my girl throughout the years. This first picture was taken when Victoria was just little so she was probably about 10 years old here.

In this picture above she is about 12 years old. 15 seemed like so far away then. How sweet and innocent she looks hehe.

In this picture she was about 13. I think this was when the obsession with funky socks and Johnny Depp movies started.

This picture just reminds me of Megan alot because she is always reading. She has loved reading ever since I can remember. Even when she was a baby she treated her books like they were gold. Turning pages carefully even at 1 years old. She picked up a book at 6 years old and said Here Mum I am going to read this to you and then proceeded to read the whole book to me. I was amazed.

And look here she is today. Still as crazy as ever. I had to include this photo to show of her crazy side and let me tell you it comes out all the time. Megan is the one that says all the classic one liners that make you laugh even years later. If you ask anyone who has met her they will have a Megan story that will make you laugh. She is even funny when she is laughing. The Home Alone movie was only funny when watching it with Megan because she would laugh at that movie until she couldnt breathe which would make everyone else laugh. At 2 years old we took her with us when we were visiting my grandmother in the hospital. Here was Megan going from bed to bed just cheering up all the other patients and brightening their day. That is who she is.

This photo was taken on our recent trip to Niagara Falls. She is here with her Aunt that we call The Clones. They get together and are alike in so many ways. Even after years of being apart the sameness was still there. It still amazes me.

Here is my Megan with her beautiful smile. I just dont know what I would do without this girl in my world. She is truly a wonderful human being and I am very proud to call her my daughter. She is smart, talented, kind, caring, polite, funny, goofy, athletic, hard working and all around amazing. I hope she knows these things about herself. I have always had a feeling that she will do something big to make the world a better place. I dont know what she we be when she grows up but I just know she tries her hardest every day to be the best that she can be and to be happy and that is all I have ever wanted. So thank you Megan for just being you and I hope you had a great birthday.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Favourite Etsy Shop Friday

Favourite Etsy Shop Feature

Lambs Ears

1. Tell us a bit about yourself.
I home school my 2 daughters and focus on being old fashioned keepers at home. I enjoy teaching them how to cook, clean, take care of a home & husband. I also teach them how to sew, knit, and crochet. We are also learning how to run a business from home with Etsy. I learn first, then pass it on to them. :-)
I got started spinning wool with a challenge from my husband, who was tired of seeing bags of yarn coming into the house & imagining the terrible costs to our bank account. He mentioned, "Why don't you spin your own yarn, it would be cheaper." I replied that there was no way I could learn how to do that...and after researching it, bought a $16 drop spindle & some wool just to show him. Surprisingly, I liked it (after quite a few laughs) and kept trying. One of our friends heard of my adventure and GAVE me an Ashford spinning wheel they had sitting around as decoration! What a joy, and I haven't stopped spinning since.

2. What made you open your shop and why Etsy?

I love to create. I knit, I spin, I dye...I have to have an outlet for all this creating. No one else in the family knits, so what am I to do with all this yarn? I decided to sell it.

3. Other than Etsy, where else do you sell your items?

I also sell at a local Living History Museum that tells about the German history in our area. I sell hand spun yarn, roving and knitted mittens, hats, wrist warmers and shawls. I also have my yarn in a small shop in Intercourse, PA.

4. How did you choose your shop name?

Lol, I had been tossing names back and forth for quite some time. One day when out in the yard I was thinking about our flower bed and the invasive plants that had been there in the past and had stubbornly refused to go away. Lambs Ears is one of those plants. It is very hardy, and difficult to remove. That started a thought (for a stubborn shop that will stick by the stuff) about how soft the plant is...well, actual lambs ears are soft too...wool...hey! I could name it Lambs Ears!

5. What are your other favorite things to do?
Other than knit and spin wool? I love to read, but have learned that books on tape are twice the fun! You can still knit or spin while getting a good book in! :-)

We (the whole family) also "work" at Landis Valley Museum part time. They are a living history museum featuring the German heritage of Lancaster County. We dress in costume for the 1750's, give tours, cook on an open hearth fire, and tell the Pennsylvania German history of the area. We also demonstrate spinning wool telling about cutting the wool off the sheep, carding, spinning and finally to the final knitted or woven project. We have a great time talking with people from all over the world. This is really fun for me!

6. What inspires you?
Oddly enough, knitting and spinning magazines inspire me. I love looking at the beautiful colors and work that others have done and usually put the magazine down at the end, ready to either knit something up, or spin.

7. What do you enjoy more spinning yarn, dying yarn or knitting?

I really enjoy spinning up hand dyed wool, whether it is mine or done by someone else. It is really surprising how it changes in every stage. You think, O.K., this will be red, orange, brown...fall colors. It comes out of the pot different; it is always a variation of those colors...the colors fade into each other creating something you couldn't have done if you tried! Then once you spin it? It changes again. One color will be more dominant...many times I have thought, "Hmm, now I didn't think that would turn out that way!" Feeling the yarn after you spin it is always the best. I just pet it and stare at it...always amazed that I managed to put that together!

8. What is your most popular item?
Well, I haven't been on Etsy long enough to really have any 1 item stand out. I usually get very good feedback on my hand spun yarn though. Folks just seem to gush about it!

9. What handmade possession do you cherish?
Of my own, I love my hand knit shawl. It is just a simple triangle, but I love the warmth. Something that someone else has made for me, would have to be the cutting board my dad has made me. It is long enough to be able to place over the sink increasing my counter space...something we never seem to have enough of!

10. Name 3 other Etsy shops you love to visit.
Well, if I am wanting to get away from fiber, I go to deniseannette, her work is amazing! I also love looking at the things that beautifulplace does. Her items are soft and airy. If I want fiber to drool over and challenge me, I go to moonlightbaker.

A big thank you to Lambs Ears for taking part in my blog feature this week. I think that is such a cute name for a yarn shop. Its always fun to hear how people came up with their shop name as its something that was difficult for me to do. I recently got the opportunity to do a trade with Lambs Ears and got some of her wonderful handspun, hand dyed yarn and a set of hand painted needles. Oh my goodness what a treat it has been. I have never knitted with handspun yarn before and it was all that I had imagined it would be. I made a slouchy hat that is waiting for a chance to be photographed and added to my shop. I still have a bit more yarn leftover to make something else. I just know I will have to do something with it. When you get this yarn you just have to stop everything and knit something from every scrap, leave none of it to waste. So if your a knitting junky or have a love of hand knitted stuff take a look at this wonderful new Etsy shop.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Favourite Etsy Shop Friday

Favourite Etsy Shop Feature

Kiley Koala

1. Tell us a bit about yourself?

I was born and raised in Southern California. I have moved around a bit in the last few years, but now live in Arizona and love it! I have an incredibly smart 4 year old son who inspires me everyday. I'm also taking classes to finish a design degree.

2. What made you open your shop and why Esty?

Since I could remember, I have always loved making and creating things. I have been told by friends and family that I should try and sell the stuff I make. So, that is how Kiley Koala was made. I actually found out about Etsy in a forum, looked it up, and signed up!

3. Other than Etsy, where else do you sell your oh so cute items?

So far I have only sold on Etsy. But I hope to start attending craft fairs and start up my own website.

4. How did you choose your shop name?

I have always loved koalas. My boyfriend gave me a Build a Bear koala for my birthday and named her Kiley... so Kiley Koala!

5. What are your other favorite things to do?

I love road trips and historical sites. I have fallen in love with Arizona's "Old West". I don't watch much TV, but never miss an episode of Ghost Hunters. I love doing pretty much anything with my family, even if it's just going out to eat.

6. What inspires you?

I think most of all my family. They are incredibly supportive and help me with my ideas. I also can't resist anything cute (especially cute fabrics) and love the beach and ocean. I also love any type of animal and hope to add more to my shop soon.

7. Of all the things you make for your shop, which do you enjoy making the most?

I think I enjoy making Kiley and Oliver the most. I love how they kind of come to life.

8. What is your most popular item?

I think Kiley, probably because she is so soft and cuddly!

9. Which handmade possession do you cherish?

My purple blanket. It was made for me by a family friend when I was a baby.

10. Name 3 other Etsy shops you love to visit.

Wow this one is hard. Etsy has so many talented artists. I think I have 220+ favorite stores.


Thank you to Kiley Koala for taking part in my blog feature this week. I just had to choose this shop from my favourites this week in honour of my sister Kylie's visit. We are Australian so the Koala part just fit right in as well and arent these the cutest koala's you've ever seen? How can there be so much cuteness in one shop. Go and see the other items in this shop. You'll be wishing you could reach out and feel their softness. If you read my blog often you will have noticed that I like the cute stuff.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Photos From A Kids Eye View

I decided I need to show off some photos taken by Olivia my 3 year old niece and Victoria my 6 year old daughter. Its so great to get images of how they see things. They do a pretty good job of taking pictures I think. The first photo about was taken by Olivia. It is one of my most favourite photos of all time. She took this of her dog Reggie. It makes me giggle every time I see it.

This next photo is what Niagara Falls looks like when your 3. Olivia took this picture and it made me realize you cant really see a whole lot from her height hehe.

This is what Niagara Falls looks like when your 6. She can more over the railing being alot taller so maybe thats why she became hooked on taking a picture of every waterfall she saw. I think Victoria did a great job. I wasnt sure how the pictures she took would turn out but they look great. Another budding photographer in the family.

The girls were sitting on a rock giggling at Niagara Falls. I thought they were just looking at the camera but apparently they were taking photos. Dont you just love how close up and smiley they are. This was a rare moment of them getting along. We cherished these moments hehe.

Here are the two photographers themselves. They look like angels dont they. Dont let the cute smiley faces fool you hehe.

It just occured to me as I was typing this out that I should have included some Megan photos. She has her own camera as well. She wants to be a photographer when she grows up and is still a kid. I guess I will have to add some Megan photos to my next post. Lets see the world through the eyes of an almost 15 year old, there alot photos of herself and her friends making goofy faces. Yep that pretty much says it all hehe.

Monday, September 14, 2009

The Big Surprise Revealed!

Well my big sister left on Sunday to go to the next stop on their trip, New York City. I hope they are having a good time there. It was a crazy month but we had a lot of fun with them there. I gave my sister her present which I had to keep a secret on here so she wouldnt see what it was when she read my blog. Now I can reveal that I made her a summer shawl designed by me. I think it turned out pretty well in the end but Im not in a hurry to block something like that any time soon. That was the first time I had blocked something made of mercerized cotton and this long and it was alot of pinning and re-pinning. It was worth it in the end because it made it look so much better. I was worried that it might be too short but when she put it on the length looked fine.

We have been up to so much since I was last able to blog other than Etsy Favourites. That was all I could seem to manage to fit in so I was proud to even get that accomplished during that time. Now I will have to post about some of our adventures in the next week or so.

I had some exciting knitting stuff happen this past week. I got a custom order that I cant wait to start knitting. I will be knitting Robbie Robot by Danger Crafts in orange and blue. Danger Crafts designed Maddox the Monster so it should be a fun pattern to make.

I also got a message on Etsy from a lady who lives locally to me and invited me to do a craft show that she holds at her house in December. I took a couple days to think about it and decided I would go ahead and do it. I figured what can I lose and it would be great publicity for Knitted For Ewe. Anything left over from the show can go on the shop which is in bad need of some new things. I have a few things that are waiting to be added to the shop I just havent gotten around to do it. I think this will be the week. So if you check back into my shop this week you will see something new. So now I have to sit down and make a game plan for what I want to sell at this show and what I want to make to add to the shop. We are arriving at prime knitted goods selling time. I always seem to start to get busy with knitting around this time. It should be lots of fun. The girls just went back to school so now I will have more time for that sort of thing.

Well I better get back to hanging out with my husband before bed time. Stay tuned for so many more posts and lots of adventures to read about.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Favourite Etsy Shop Friday

Favourite Etsy Shop Friday

Scrumptious Delight

1. Tell us a bit about yourself.
I'm originally from the UK but have not lived there for 12yrs...I've lived in Portugal, Spain,France and now Vancouver,Canada with my partner (who is french) and 2 kids. I love it here but don't have a work permit yet which whilst being difficult financially it has allowed me time to concentrate on making my toys and I find myself involved in shows and art galleries which is really exciting.

2. What made you open your shop and why Etsy?

I stumbled upon Etsy by accident and loved it, I opened my shop while I was still in France but its only since being in North America that I started to sell! Etsy is a great site not only to sell but also to connect with like minded people.

3. Other than Etsy, Where else do you sell your original plushies?
Some of my toys can be found in Schmancy and Snowmonkeys house of monsters (both in Seattle) and there is also The sweet somethings gallery on Saltspring island. I also plan on doing a couple of fairs locally this holiday season.

4. How did you choose your shop name?
My shop name was chosen because I'm a fan of Roald Dahl and my favourite book as a kid was Charlie and the Chocolate Factory...and then also because so many of my toys are food related.

5. What are your other favourite things to do?
I love anything crafty, riding my bike (it makes me feel like a kid again!) and I also love helping out at my kids school...I run there breakfast program and I love having that kind of insight into their school life!

6. What inspires you?
Food...a lot! fabric, my kids...inspiration can come from anywhere..I'm so fickle!

7. Of all the items you make for your shop, which do you enjoy making the most?
I don't know that I have a favourite in my shop but I did really enjoy making the gumball machine.

8. What is your most popular item?
Without a doubt the marshmallows and cotton candy.

9. What handmade possession do you cherish?
I have a fair few treasures made by my kids, and drawings made by my partner. At the moment I'm trading with some of my fellow members on the etsy plushteam. I've met so many cool people through Etsy and Flickr and I would love to have a little piece of the art of my internet friends

10. Name 3 other Etsy shops you love to visit.
I often visit the other plushteamer's shops there's more than 50 members but collectively we have a shop under the name of plushteam, I also love TwinkieChan she is sooo creative and I love the photography of boopsiedaisy

I would like to thank Scrumptious Delight for taking part in my Favourite Etsy Shop Feature this week. Dont you just love her toys. They are so original and so cute. I dont know how she comes up with them all. Hop on over to her Etsy shop and you never know what cute and scrumptious delights you might find.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Favourite Etsy Shop Friday

Favourite Etsy Shop Feature

Namaste Glass

1. Tell us a bit about yourself.
I am a work from home mom with Namaste Glass being one of my full time jobs (mama being the first full time job).

Most of my days consist of working in the office, maintaining our websites, filling orders,
designing jewelry, shipping orders, talking with buyers, marketing fun, etc. I try to balance doing this while raising and homeschooling our, soon to be, 6 year old son. It works out well, (most days) he plays around the house and outside, engaging at times in what I am doing or waiting, unwillingly, for me to get done so we can get out and have an adventure. I am also a massage therapist, so I see clients several times a week, that is where I get a lot of my peace and quiet time.
My husband, Matt, is the artist and main creative force behind Namaste Glass. We work together on
a daily basis in all aspects of what we do. Except that he's on the torch mostly and I rarely get a chance to get in the studio and blow glass with him. Together we balance out daily work and traveling to shows while teaching our son about the world we live in.

2. What made you decide to open your shop and why Etsy?

Namaste Glass has been our passion and our living for 10 years now, we believe in handmade items
and the ability to make a living doing what you love. Getting a shop on Etsy is an extension of this philosophy, being involved with an interactive community of artists in that platform is very inspiring. We primarily sell our knitting needles on our Etsy site, so it is a great outlet for that item, tools that other people can create with.

3. Other than Etsy, where else do you sell your knitting needles?

We have a knitting industry geared site that is
www.glass2art.com. This is where we sell many other styles of knitting needle, as well as crochet hooks, buttons and shawl pins. We also sell them at the many festivals that we do each year as Namaste Glass, www.namasteglass.net.

4. How did you choose your shop name?
The word Namaste has universal appeal and the meaning is based around the premise of peace. We chose this
word to represent our company 10 years ago so we continued to work with it on Etsy.

5. What are your other favourite things to do?

I think my very favorite thing to do is going to our local coffee place and getting some morning joe, but I can't do that
every day, just Mondays, Thursdays, Fridays and maybe Saturdays~ I love hiking, doing yoga. I enjoy thrift store shopping, creating home crafts, and often re-arranging my living environment. I love getting in the garden and growing food as well. My favorite is eating the bounty!

6. What inspires you?

Colors mostly, I am very moved by the color of something. Right now I love a deep, turqouise blue.
My sons imagination inspires me. That and his age, trying to experience things through his eyes and having fun in those
moments. It's something that I don't have to think about, just do and that frees me up in other ways, that's inspiring!

7. Which knitting needle is your most popular?

The Amper/Purple nail by far! Long time favorite and best seller. The Amber/Purple color is rich and multi-hued.
It has this amazing ability to pick up the color that is around it.

8. What other things do you make out of glass and which do you enjoy the most?

We make glass belt buckles, which are definitely both of our favorites. They are stylish, functional and something we put
a lot of time and energy into creating. We also create many pendants and jewelry items, including earrings and rings. We make a wonderful line of stemless wine glasses and wine bottle stoppers for our functional housewares collection, which includes mugs (also a favorite that I use every day) and coffee stirrers. All of these things out of glass! Handblown Pyrex glass has lots of potential~

9. What handmade possession do you cherish?
The artwork in our home that was done by friends. We are fortunate to know a lot of creative people. Currently we have
6 pieces (paintings/drawings) hanging in our home done by 5 different friends, they are all amazing and are possessions that have a lot of meaning to me.

10. Name 3 other Etsy shops you love to visit.

CGcre8tive - My friends handcrafted purse line, she does really great work with beautiful materials.

persimmonjewelry - Gracie creates bright, bold and beautiful jewelry that is truly one of a kind.

JenGillette - Upcycled clothes that are adorable and fun!

I would like to thank Namaste Glass for taking part in my Favourite Etsy Shop Feature this week. Dont you just love the look of their knitting needles. Even if you dont knit I think they would be wonderful to own. Being a knitter I would love to find out what its like to knit with glass needles. I will have to check out their other websites now and see all these other glass items they have mentioned. If you have enjoyed this feature take a look at their Etsy shop and see all the other glass needles they have there.