Thursday, September 10, 2009

Got any Pepto?

I'm really terrible at checking my analytics on my etsy shop. What happened today may or may not have changed my habits.

I checked my stats, just to see if I could sort of kind of maybe understand what they are saying. It just really looks like a whole lot of math to me.

I did notice that I had a few hits a while back that came from a referral from I'm not really familiar with the site, but I figured it had something to do with my Reboot and Escape coasters, so I gave it a look.

It was one of their "Totally Geeky or Geek Chic?" picks. Which also means that they put up a poll asking for people's opinions.

A POLL! The HORROR! I literally wanted to throw up. Thankfully, only one person had commented, and it was favorable. I didn't even look at the poll results, if there were any.

I know I seem a little bit insecure, but this totally took me by surprise. I wasn't expecting a "Hey? Got a minute? See this here? Do you think this sucks? Let us know!!" kinda thing.

The lesson? My skin has got to get a little tougher. I really can't let something like this bother me. My stuff is not going to please everyone, and the interweb is full of, well... everyone.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Gearing up for Halloween

Every year, one of the most fun projects is to work on a Halloween costume for my daughter. She's 13, so we have had lots of different ones. Thankfully, she hasn't outgrown the desire to dress up.

Last year, she was Lucy. This was ridiculously fun to do. She's an "I Love Lucy" fanatic - has all the DVDs - and so this choice for her was an easy one.

We started with some of her favorite looks from Lucy episodes ("I like that collar." "See the cuffs? Could we do that?") and YARDS of black and white polka dot fabric.

I found the shoes at a yard sale, unworn, for $3. They had a very retro vibe that she loved. We bought the wig at Target (I think?) in the Halloween section, but it was just a red wig. It had to be "Lucy-fied." We even made a stole at the last minute from some fake fur that I had, left over from another project.

This year, she wants to be a flapper. I am sooooo excited to start work on this ensemble! Right now I'm assembling the raw materials - fringe, shiny bobs and baubles, maybe a feather or two - and looking for inspiration. I'll post more as the project progresses.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

The Baxter Adventures

In lieu of crafty goodness, COASTERS!, personal thoughts, or angry rants, here are some pictures of my widdle doggie, Baxter (a West Highland White Terrier, or Westie) enjoying his favorite time of the day - time for a ride in the car.

Going to the post office is the most fun thing EVAR!

Hanging over my shoulder from the back seat. Must. not. miss. anything.

Waiting at school for my daughter to appear. Or really, anyone who might come by the car and give him some attention.

Wind in his face = supreme happiness.

Although it might appear as if he is in deep thought, pondering some philosophical question, I'm guessing no.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Gift Guide Love!

After trying to make heads or tails out of Google Analytics, I finally figured out that my Reboot and Escape coasters were featured in an Etsy Gift Guide - Geek Chic!

Thanks Etsy!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

September - Month of Mojo

Blogging mojo, that is.

Last week while I was on Twitter, someone (I wish I could remember whom) tweeted that they were going to post on their blog everyday in September in an attempt to recapture some blogging mojo. I thought it was a great idea, and much needed.

So, here goes. I'm going to post EVERY DAY in September.

And since I have not much to offer in the way of pictures or fun stuff or anything, I'm taking this opportunity to share my favorite afternoon pick-me-up.

Blueberry Smoothie

1 cup frozen blueberries
1 cup plain yogurt
1/4 cup milk
a couple of packs of sweetener (to taste)

Combine in a blender and blend.

Friday, August 28, 2009

DIY - Boyfriend Jeans

Really, aren't they just a basic 5-pocket jean with a roll at the bottom? Do I seriously need to go purchase new jeans to participate in this trend?

Absolutely not.

Step 1. Locate a pair of basic, 5 pocket jeans, either from your own closet or thrifted. Perfect use of thrifted jeans!

Step 2. Put on your jeans. Using chalk or pins, mark how long your want your jeans to be.

Step 3. Take off your jeans. Lay flat. Add about 3-4 inches to your mark (this will accomodate the roll at the bottom). Whack off the bottom of the jeans.

(Why cut them? Why not just roll them from the bottom? This makes for a really bulky roll. Cutting them off makes a smaller, cuter cuff.)

Step 4. Zig zag around to finish.

Step 5. Roll up the jeans. Use a few well placed stitches to hold the roll in place, if you wish.

Step 6. Distress in well chosen places, if you wish. I did this with a cheese-grater-looking-pedicure-thingie-found-at-Dollar-Tree.

Step 7. Enjoy, smug in the knowledge that you got the look without buying new jeans. You have beat the system. Congrats!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

My favorite new lunch spot

My mom took me for a birthday lunch to the Greenhouse Grille in Fayetteville, AR. So very delicious! I had the Greek Quesadilla (with organic spinach, artichoke hearts, roasted red peppers, organic garbanzo beans, mozzarella and feta cheeses topped with a goat cheese cream sauce).
Mom had the Greenhouse salad (organic greens) with grilled shrimp. Isn't it gorgeous?

It's a teeny little place, it would maybe seat 50 if a shoehorn was involved. Very simple interior, cute little bar, great service, and the menu was overloaded with things that I wanted to try. I can't wait to find another excuse to go again!

Monday, August 3, 2009

You sell your stuff where? How do you spell it?

OK, today my goal is to come up with some sort of business card/etsy card kind of thingie. Something that doesn't just promote me, but promotes etsy, too.

Last week, I found myself being repeately asked about where did I sell my stuff? How do you spell "Etsy"? (Just like Betsy, no "B") What kind of stuff do they sell there? You get the idea.

Each time, because I had no biz card or handout, the poor soul had to find a piece of scratch paper or old receipt and scribble down the name, only to be lost in the laundry later.

I get it. I suck at the promotions thing. I especially suck at the "tooting my own horn" thing. I'm much more comfortable talking about Etsy than I am my own little shop.

So. Goal. Come up with something to give people. Print many of them. Put them in my purse.

In other news, new coasters! For the Geek who needs COASTERS! Or, basically anyone who uses a keyboard.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

You know you want to

Make yourself into a Mad Men inspired character here!

Groovy Shrooms, baby

This is my newest offering to the exciting world of coasters. I've been toying with the idea of mushrooms for a while, but just couldn't quite figure out what I wanted to do. Finally, I got inspired. I'm kinda loving how they turned out, and I'm thinking about doing some in different colors - maybe a deep plum?

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Hello? (Tap! Tap!) Is this thing on?

Wow, I knew I hadn't blogged in a while. I had no idea I hadn't blogged since May.

Not much to report. Getting ready for back to school (my daughter). Making some coasters.

Wow, these blogging muscles are really weak. Will blog more later. Water....

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

DD and I discussing New Moon

Me: Hey, I saw the poster for New Moon today, but I don't understand. I thought Bella was with Edward? On the poster she is hugged up to some other guy and Edward has his back to them.

DD: That's Jacob. He's a werewolf.

Me: What? She leaves Edward for a werewolf?

DD: No, actually Edward left her.

Me: ???

DD: Yeah, well he thought she would be better off without him. So he just disappeared.

Me: He just left town?

DD: Yeah. His whole family did.

Me: Why did his entire family leave?

DD: Well, one of the other vampires went crazy when Bella got a paper cut, so they thought it would be better if they all left.

Me: So she managed to find a werewolf for her next boyfriend?

DD: Well, he wasn't a werewolf when she met him.

Me: He became a werewolf?

DD: Yeah. Bella had known him since they were kids.

Me: What the hell is going on in Oregon?

DD: Washington.

Me: Whatever. What is up with Bella that she attracts all these supernatural beings? First a vampire, then a werewolf? I mean, really, what are the odds? Are we going to find out in the end that Bella was really a troll or something?

At this point, my daughter just gave up and left me.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Blah, blah. bloggity, blah...

or... "No good reason for a blog post, but whatever"

Yeah, I wish I had something sparkling and witty and clever to say, but no. So, in lieu of actual content, craftiness, information, or even links to things of that sort, please enjoy pictures of my pets, Baxter and Max.

"Don't lie to me, woman. We both know that there is bacon on that counter. I can sit here all day and peer into your dark soul with these pitiful eyes. How long do you think you can take it? "

"Seriously. Get your roots done."

"Alas, poor Santa Bo-Bo, I knew him well..."

"Da Rubs, dey go here."

Monday, May 11, 2009

It's all good.

My whole day has been one lonnnnnnnnng struggling-to-be-productive-but-ha!-no-way ball of frustration.

Woke up in the middle of the night. WIDE AWAKE. Went into the living room and watched The Fashion Show (thank heavens for Tivo). (Ps. Merlin is crazy.) Then watched it again. Fell asleep sometime during the second viewing.

DEEPLY. Very much asleep.

When my daughter woke me up to take her to school, I felt like I had been hit by a truck - a truck filled with Ambien and soft pillows and down comforters and maybe a bottle or two of wine. OMG, the sleepy.

Came home, found something for breakfast, ate on the couch while moaning to the dog about how tired I was. He didn't really care.

Finally got in the shower and began to shake the cobwebs. In sheer desperation, turned the water on COLD for the last 15 seconds.


Got dressed and ran some errands. Waited in the longest line ever seen at a fabric store for one solitary woman to cut fabric, as I waited behind a woman with at least 12 bolts of fabric, a crying, cranky infant, and an adorable 3 year old who was trying to climb out of the shopping cart and kept asking everyone who passed for gum.

Waited again in the checkout line for someone to get a price check and a manager and a clarification about the pricing situation on something she was buying.


Had planned to use my Oprah-KFC-coupon for some free chicken for lunch, but didn't have any time left for such luxuries as lunch.

Ran by the grocery store to pick up some much needed essentials, including Froot Loops. The store clerk guy noticed the Star Trek promo on the cereal box and took the opportunity to tell me that he had already been to the new Star Trek movie. I volunteered that I had seen it, too. Had trekkie discussion about time line discrepancies and humorous movie lines and how disappointed he had been in Star Trek Nemesis. I proudly held my own, for although I don't speak Kingon or anything, I am well versed in the Trek.

Have just enough time to run home and take out the dog (don't worry - he's not named Tiberius) and put away the frozen foods before going to pick up daughter at school.

Daughter informs me that talent show tryouts are today. Immediately after school. As in, NOW.

Heavy sigh.

We run home and she gets some music to sing with. We hop back in the car and book it back to school.

Tryouts went well. And thankfully, daughter didn't pick a Taylor Swift song, because EVERY OTHER GIRL we heard did.

After tryouts, daughter wants to get a treat from Sonic, and frankly, I could use a little something. The Diet Mango Limeade was delish.

Came home and realized that tonight is homemade-pizza-and-House night. (And since House and Cuddy slept together at the end of the last episode OMG this is not to be missed.) So I'm getting ready to put the pizza dough stuffs in the bread machine and the pizza sauce stuffs in a saucepan on the stove.

Big. freakin'. sigh..........

Meanwhile, important etsy-business-type things went completely undone. I've hardly been on Twitter! I haven't convo'd anyone. Listed anything. Taken pictures. Nope. Nada. Nothing.

But, as my daughter was thanking me for taking her back for tryouts, I told her that was one of the great things about working at home and for yourself. It allows me the freedom to take her to tryouts or pick her up when she's sick without asking a boss first. And trust me, I've had some bosses in my former work life that wouldn't have been very flexible - and the frustration would have been much worse than anything I encountered today.

So, after House and pizza, I can come upstairs and Twitter and convo and relist and sew.

It's all good.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009


I recently discovered that in our OnDemand Freezone (cable company DVR thingie) we have some exercise videos, and one of them is the Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred. So yesterday I tried it out.

I didn't know I had abs, but apparently I do. The only reason that I know this is because this morning they huuuuurrrrrrt. Also my butt, my arms, pretty much everything is sore.

And so, not wanting to put this seemingly-forward-progress to waste (no pain no gain, right?) I'm going for Day 2.

Tomorrow morning I may need a cane.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Brainstorming for Promos

I've been thinking about promo items lately. I like the idea of giving your customer just a little something extra to say "Thank You", but it's hard to find things that won't get tossed in the trash or break the bank.

Now, there are tons of great sellers on etsy that do a fantastic business making cool promos, such as buttons, magnets, etc... But, as a DIYer with crafty tendencies, I like to find things that I can make. The most recent thing I made were magnets. I'm also in the process of making some matchbook notepads. If anyone would like a tutorial on these, just let me know.

I think the best thing is to try and be creative and keep in mind what the customer is buying. Are you selling aprons? How about printing out your grandmother's famous oatmeal cookie recipe on cardstock and enclosing it? Is it Springtime? How about picking up some flower seed packets at the dollar store and putting your own printed label on the package? My next plan for a promo to go with my Market Totes is to do a grocery list with a magnet on the back to stick on the fridge.

I looked through the etsy forums on this subject, and here are some of the other popular ideas...
  • bookmarks
  • silver cleaning cloths
  • soap samples
  • stickers
  • key ring charms
I found a few articles as well -
If you have any other ideas for thoughtful promo items, please leave a comment. I would love to gather more ideas on this subject.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

I think I can do this.

I love this modern bookcase makeover at BHG. I know exactly where it will go in my living room.

(My husband will be so excited that I have yet another project planned.)

As seen on this morning...

"warning more knitted penises after the jump"


It's just one of those sentences that you realize you have never heard before, and probably never again.

Monday, April 27, 2009

New Iced Coffee method - cold drip

Yesterday I picked up the new In Style magazine (the one with Jennifer Garner on the cover) and in the very, very back was a smart idea about a new way to make iced coffee using a chilled method. I tried it and it worked so well, I had to share.

This uses a "cold drip" method. Basically, you pour 8 cups of cold water into 3/4 lb. of ground coffee and place in the fridge overnight. Then strain (I simply poured it into my coffee maker, which was turned off, and let it drip through). You will then have a very concentrated cold coffee, which according to the article, can be stored in your fridge for up to two weeks.

To make your iced coffee, they say "Pour into a tall, narrow glass of ice, filling it 2 to 3 inches from the bottom, and top with milk or water." I also added some refrigerated creamer with Hazelnut flavor and a packet of Sweet-n-Low.

I didn't have 3/4 lb., but closer to 1/3 lb, so I just sort of halved the recipe. They also recommend using filtered water, not tap, so I used bottled.

Very, very good. Every time I try to make iced coffee, one of the following usually happens:
  • I forget and half a pot of coffee cooks for about 3 hours.
  • I pour some of the coffee into a cup and put it in the freezer to chill, only to find a CoffeePop waiting for me later.
  • I pour too-warm coffee over ice and, ew....
Basically, I have some timing issues. But this method solves all my probs! It's ready when I am ready! And it tastes really, really good. I think it would be great for using for blended coffee drinks as well. Might have to try that this afternoon.


Friday, April 24, 2009


I've spent so much time in the last 24 hours reading about Twitter and How to best use Twitter and Here are all the applications you need to know about for Twitter and Here is the meaning for all those weird punctuation thingies on Twitter that actually tweeting has taken on the feeling of doing the dishes.

Today will be all about having FUN WITH TWITTER!!!



(It is supposed to be fun, right?)

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Etsy day, promo items, and Twitter

Tomorrow is Etsy Day! However, since I'm going to be the gal about town today, yet homebound tomorrow, I decided that Etsy day would be today for me.

I decided to print the sign that was made by shugirl for this special day, but I didn't want to drain my color printer cartridge with all the orange, so I made a black and white version to print on some colored cardstock. Feel free to take it and make your own.

I think it came out pretty good!

I happened to have some extra cardstock because I've been making promo magnets.

If anyone hasn't made these before, they are super simple. You need flat back glass marbles (found in the floral dept. for cheap!), cardstock, Mod Podge, round craft magnets (available everywhere) and E6000 adhesive (craft dept, comes in a gray squeeze tube with a pointed nozzle).

The rest is time consuming, but easy. Print your business name or whatever you wish on the cardstock. Use plain paper the first few times to make sure the size is right before you use your beautiful cardstock. The design will need to be just a touch smaller than the glass marble.

Print your designs and cut to size. Apply Mod Podge to the back of the marble, put the design in place, and Mod Podge again over the entire back. Let dry. Glue the magnets to the back using E-6000. Let dry.

TADA!!! Promo items!!!

Yesterday, I spent an embarrassing amount of time trying to make my blog bloggier. It's getting there, but I'm not totally satisfied. The picture for the header is still a little fuzzy. And I am going to start on Flickr soon, because, well, everyone else is?

I also made a button for my sidebar for Twitter. Once again, if you would like to use this for your own blog, feel free to take it.

I broke Blogger.

I actually broke my old blog (serves me right for thinking I could tweak the html) and so I moved to this one. You can find my old blog here.