Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Tumus on Holiday

Tumus will be on Holiday December 24th - December 31st.
The store will still be open during this time so feel free to browse!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Last Orders Out!

The Christmas rush is at last over. The last orders have been packaged and shipped. To be truthful I never expected such a huge response to the dog ornaments and I'm incredibly happy that they were so popular! A big thank you to everyone who sent in pictures of their dogs, puppies, and cats! You certainly made my first Etsy Christmas something to remember ^_^

Last Order
Originally uploaded by diamondkelt
Last Orders

One of my favorite dog stories was probably this guy.

Boggs is a Red Socks Fan
Originally uploaded by diamondkeltBoggs Is a Red Socks Fan

From what his owner tells me Boggs, like his dad, really enjoys a good baseball game.

Happy Holidays!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

A Cup of T

My tea was unusually good this morning. I didn't do anything differently, but it tasted very nice. Maybe it was because I'm so tired that anything hot and comforting felt good.

Christmas is coming along well. Things are winding down at Tumus for the holiday season. I'm glad the rush is over and my sewing hand can recouperate better :) I've got several project planned to work on over my Holiday break and sooo many photos to take and finish off.

I also have a long overdue addition to my Foto Friday for tomorrow if I can get it uploaded tonight. My photography's been on hiatus since I've been sewing so much. And with Christmas and baking it just doesn't seem like there's any time left other than to sleep. I don't care what people say, oh you can sleep when you die, pffff, I need my sleep or I'm a cranky girl.
I plan on taking Chris down to another park after Christmas to get some pictures of wildlife and such. I miss the woods. I don't mind the quiet suburban neighborhood we live in but sometimes I wish I could be surrounded by the calm peace of trees, animals and earth. I think I'm becoming allergic to pavement these days :lol:

I'll be wrapping presents when I get home from work and finally relaxing. I only have to work 2 days next week and then I'm on vacation! Tea and napping for all ^_^

Enjoy some tea themed fun:
Teapot Clock
Tea Cards
The Cup That Cheers

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Reza Deghati

I was listing to NPR this morning and heard an interview with a photojournalist named Reza Deghati. He spoke with such passion and conviction about his photos and everything he'd seen in his life that I felt like crying when I heard it. Here is a man who feels everything around him. He sees it with his heart. It's a rare thing to hear someone on the radio and know that they are the real thing. To hear words being spoken and realize that this man lives the life he was destined to do.

He's written a book. I will have to get it. He is a remarkable person.
In a section of Reza War and Peace titled, "Thoughts of An Exile," he writes:

"Within you remains the memory of your lost country, and you may feel disappointment in the land where you are now living, the country you thought would be your promised land and beyond it your way of being free. There remains, too, a feeling of mourning for your native land.

This grief is always with you below the surface, but the longing for your homeland is called up even more acutely by a tangible reminder of your country — a familiar smell, a food that tastes like a dish back home, a countryside that evokes scenes from your childhood. You feel it as well when you hear someone speak your language and you hear once again the melody of your native tongue. For the exile, the joys of the present are full of memories of the past."

NPR Weekend EditionSince leaving Iran, his work has reflected an extraordinary empathy and intimacy with his subjects, particularly for those longing for home.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Time To Catch My Breath

In the mean time, while the dog ornaments have been going over marvelously well I've been trying to catch my breath! Whew! Thankfully (never though I'd say that) it's slowed enough that I can take some pictures this weekend of my new magnet sets. You can see them here in my shop Tumus

I already have a few listed in my shop, but am going to add a "word series". I'm getting hits on them for sure so I hope the word series gets as much love too ^_^ These are incredibly light weight but have neodymium magnets on the back making each individual magnet have a 3 lb pull! They definitely will do the job!

Monday, December 1, 2008

The Sniffles

Thanksgiving rolls were a hit, especially the mouse biscuits. But in all the hustle and bustle I also caught a cold and by Sunday I had the sniffles big time. It makes sleeping harder, but on the upside I stay up and sew :lol:

In other crafty news I must start on my wedding invitations very soon! I have to make about 150 of them and would like to have them done by March. This will creep up quicker than I can imagine I'm sure:lol:

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Mouse Rolls

Mouse Rolls
Originally uploaded by diamondkelt
I've been baking like mad this Thanksgiving, getting ready to start on another 4 dozen rolls in a moment, for now here's something to make you "roll" on the floor laughing.

Yeah, those are gonna be mice rolls. Made especially for my niece Abby and her brother Caleb.

Mouse Rolls about to baked
Originally uploaded by diamondkelt

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Red Are The Knuckles

My first 2 knuckles on both hands are strangely red today. They only get like this when the colder months hit and it makes me wonder if that's really where all my general hand aching comes from. You know like tendonitis/arthritis type stuff.
Especially when I do alot of cutting and sewing like I have been doing in the last 2 days.

I don't mind it as I can work thru it just fine so long as I don't over do it on typing during work or playing games at home :lol: It also reminds me just how hard I work with my hands now that I'm running Tumus on Etsy. It's good to know that old fashioned hard work will still bear it's mark on me long after I've stopped for the night and settled down for a cup of tea.

I can look at my red knuckles and think, you did good kid, you did good :)

Friday, November 21, 2008

Foto Friday has gone to the Dogs!

Tillie in New York
Originally uploaded by diamondkelt
My wonderful customer Kellymac23 has given me some lovely photos of her all too cute Westie pup named Tillie. With her help we designed a brand new dog ornament especially for Westies!

You can see the ornament in my shop!
And here's the model!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Where My Dogs At?

Bianca Star
Originally uploaded by diamondkelt
Here's a hearty THANK YOU!!!!!!!! To all my wonderful customers and their beloved dogs ^_^ These kind buyers have all recently received their personalized dog ornament in the mail (or are about to in Laura's case) and are leaving the most wonderful convos and feedback ^_^

Meet the doggies who made it possible!

Winston from Ontario
Originally uploaded by diamondkelt

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Christmas Is In the Mail!

Over the past week I've been slowly acquiring my Christmas stash. I'm so excited to be giving these gifts out!! They are all from Etsy.
For Mom, a beautifully hand embroidered little lamb custom made just for me courtesy of AppleandEva all the way from Germany! There's a special message to my mom on the back too with darling little butterflies ^_^

For my two sisters, my mom and myself a collection of delicious soaps from Savor! Trust me I bought more than just this :lol:

And a wonderful custom listing from TeaMan with shiny tea tins to store it all in for my Aunt Cindy and Grandma!

I can't wait till it all comes in the mail. The post man must think I'm nuts! LOL!!!!!

Monday, November 17, 2008

We All Start From Zilch

It's Monday. Oh Monday, why do you plague mankind with your presence? Why? All joking aside I'm pretty proud at how organzied I'm getting with my orders and how I see a system forming. It's becoming easier for me to create my dog ornaments and make up patterns. I have a system to laying things out and cutting them, sewing it all together and packaging. It's great to see it happening!A friend of mine on the forums has been taking some time to consider a new line of work, on Etsy still, but a new direction for her shop. Over the course of the week she's been getting a bit more nervous and unsure about how to go about it or if she'll be successful. I had to remind her that we all start from zilch, zip, zero, nada. Most of us come from crafting hobbies in hopes of fulfilling that itch to be a "real paid artist".Take time and think about it. If you're successful then what does that mean to you? The moment you start thinking "you've made it" you will fall. You can't just stop when you reach the top. No! You must keep going and reinventing and creating and setting new goals!Success is relavent to each individual. Just because one person has 10,000 sales does not mean they think of themselves as successful. Everyone starts from the pile of ashes. You can be a phoenix if you want, but only if you truly want it.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Stain Glass Orange

Stain Glass Orange
Originally uploaded by diamondkelt
It's a bit early, but Fall is fading fast. Here's to remembering!

Monday, November 10, 2008

The Things No One Can Tell You

No one can ever tell you everything they've learned from experience about running their business. So here's what I've been learning and experiencing over the past 10 months.No one can ever tell you when you cross the line between a business and a hobby. When does it happen? It's not like after you've sold "X" amount of gadgets you're suddenly legit. I think it happens when you realize how much you need to organize and keep track of your expenses, when you see you're making a profit instead of just putting it back into supplies or maybe it happens when you make that first sale.I think I've fallen into all three here. I need to get more organized about my expenses and get official starting in December. I hope that I won't owe anything already but there's alot I'm paranoid about. I've always been paranoid about how business taxes work. Like:

-will I be over taxed-Will it become a hassle to collect-how do I keep good records of my sales
-will I under pay on taxes
-will I owe
-do I need business insurance
-how the hell do I file them? quarterly? yearly? bi-yearly?
-Do I only need to charge for the state of Ohio tax,
-do I charge county tax of where my business is based.
-What if I don't sell anything in State do I still pay taxes?If only there were classes on this stuff in my area. I'm sure there are but how on earth do I find out?

Our county office is a cess pool of fail so I'm more than intimidated about finding out how the heck I go about this becoming "Official" bit.I feel better writing it all out. It means I'm seriously pondering all this madness. I'm not trying to evade anyone or anything it just feels so overwhelming. I mean will it be a benefit to be official like this? I don't know? It's not like I can say, oh wait I've changed my mind unregister me!I know a lawyer I'm sure she can advise me in the legal matters of taxes and whatnot or at least push me in the right direction of where to seek out the answers.Personally it's exciting and scary all at the same time. My family doesn't really have any entrepnuers, my dad's dad was, but that was AGES ago. It would go along with all the other first I've been thru in my life. 1st Born, 1st to Graduate HS, 1st to go to College, 1st to be financially independent, 1st house.....all that stuff. Being new to something shouldn't scare me, but it does. It's always the unknown that frightens people the most. So I'll just have to do what I do every time I try something new and that's research, think, and leap.

Friday, November 7, 2008

New Photography Tag

A photography tag will be starting soon so you can find awesome pictures more readily! It gives me a chance to show you what I've been working on and will even show things OTHER than my sewing. I'm sure you're all dying to know my other hobbies or see fun pictures.I think the Christmas rush is starting to gain momentum! I know it's only the 1st week of November but oh my goodness it feels like I don't have enough hands lol!I made a new pattern last night for a West Highland Terrier/Scottie Dog ornament. I've had two requests for them already in the last 2 days! It's probably a good idea that I've made a pattern for these little cute doggies ^_^ Now I just have to get the listing set up, but it seems that I always get pulled away to sew on something else. LOLI have a feeling this weekend is going to be booked. Not only do I need to set up my lightbox (as mentioned before) but there's supplies to be bought, felt to be organized, and accounts to be sorted. I had a goal to have 40 items listed in my shop prior to December but it's tough at the moment, but that's not always a bad problem to have ^_^

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Busy Bee Is Me!

Been busy finishing up 2 more Moo Dolls these last few days, pictures to follow later this week. I have a goal to create 10 more dolls to have my stock ready to list. I'm also in the process of getting my lightbox sorted out. I figured I should probably get on the ball with it since the weather will be turning sharply cooler later this weekend and that will draw an end to my outdoor photo sessions. I just need to figure out if I need to buy a few extra desk lamps (the small variety) to help light up the inside. I'm going to see how tissue paper diffuses the lighting.So much experimenting with lighting and good photos! I should take pictures of my light box progress so you can see how I made one ^_^ I also plan on adding some gingerbread men into the Tumus store as well so keep an eye out for those as well ^_^ I haven't decided if these will be bowl fillers or ornaments. I must first make up a pattern!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Sore Hands

I'm not sure what's been going on with my right hand in the last year but it's seriously starting to feel stiff and a bit swollen. I'm only 28 so it's hard to consider that it could be arthritis. It runs in my family and my grandma said that they diagnosed her around 38 for it.Well poot. I don't want it that's for sure. My doc thinks it's just tendonitis which i could also see, but I can't really tell. All i know is that it hurts after a loooong day at the computer. (Yeah and here I am typing this up lol!) So working 8 normal hours then OT is probably aggravating the whole thing. I've been self medicating with Advil and cold/hot therapy when I can. I'm tempted to try the Willow Bark tea, but haven't been able to get over to the natural food store.Despite all of this I've forced myself to be productive and when my hand hurts too much to sew or grip a small needle, I cut things out. So today I made a new pattern, cut out more sweater hearts, and thought of another pattern I'd like to try with my more colorful felt ^_^ Trust me it will be cute.I'd like to tell myself that my "flare ups" would die down if I didn't do data entry as a full-time job, but maybe that's just a longing to sell my craft full-time and to not be sitting at a desk for hours.*Looks longingly outside the window* The trees are very very pretty today. It's finally cooled down enough to make it feel crisp and clean. Pretty soon all that color will be swept away and winter will fall soft and cold.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008


Well that time of year is rolling in. I'm feeling festive enough already. In fact my candy corns have been doing remarkably well. I'm so glad I made them because I did them on an absolute whim, but I'm so pleased with them ^_^Everyone's starting to talk about flu shots and such around my area and the local pharmacies and drug stores have their booths set up. But frankly I'd rather use a more natural defense like Echinacea.My mom always cracks up when I tell her I've been drinking my Echinacea tea whenever the Office Ick stirs up. She's one of those people who think that all that hearbal stuff is nonsense, but if it works for me then it works.Here's some other tid bits that might perk your interest:-Natural Extra Virgin Olive Oil has been proven to have anti-inflammatory qualities to it, much like Ibuprofen. Unfortunately it has to be super fresh. Which means the bottled stuff at your local grocer probably isn't going to have enough "zing" to it to calm your aches and pains. However for those who live in Europe your chances of getting the good stuff are significantly higher!-Vitamin C can help quell allergy symptoms. Drink up me hearties! Drink up! That little orange can help with your sneezing from sinus woes to weezing from asthma. Just like EVOO, Vitamin C can pack a mean punch in the inflammatory department. You have to ingest a decent amount to see marked improvements, but along side your daily multi-vitamin an extra glass of OJ wouldn't hurt as well. I've actually tried this before and while it won't STOP the symptoms it will decrease them, especially if you're consistent with your in take of the stuff :)-Willow Bark Tea, specifically White Willow is just as effective as aspirin in the pain department without all the nasty side effects (like stomach ulcers from taking too much aspirin). It's an ancient remedy and reading on the history of aspirin itself I discovered that the main ingredient that makes aspirin so effect is VERY similiar to the pain relieving substance found in the White Willow. I've heard it tastes bitter and in order to brew it you'll have to soak it for up to 8 hours. Still if it beats the chemical why not try it? I've also read that when taken on a regular basis that it can help with migraine management, bonus!-Cilantro! I LOVE this leaf. I put it in salsa, salads, tomato soups, and sometimes in my rice with chicken. It's just so tasty! And lo and behold it's got antioxidants in it. Cilantro and Coriander are close friends. Cilantro is the leafy part and the seeds are Coriander. Weak Coriander tea can even help with colic in children.Other good foods & herbs:TomatoesArtichokesDillCinnamonSpinachSoy MilkWhole WheatPlain YogurtPeppermintSalmonThere are so many others but these are some of my favorites. Even with the cold and flu season lurking around the corner here in the States it's nice to know there are other remedies other than just a flu shot ^_^**As well ALL natural/homeopathy remedies it's wise to consult your physician before starting any of these treatments**

Friday, September 26, 2008

Things to Do, Things to Finish

I had a delightful surprise earlier this afternoon when I somehow got an Etsy frontpage! I was actually an alternate and though this is the only screen shot I can find of my first appearance I'm very happy to be getting to the front for the first time ^_^ So VERY exciting. I really don't think I could have done it without the few friends that have made treasuries that have included me in them.There i am ^_^Now I have to finish up my siamese kitties an get those photographed! We are mowing the lawn so I'll have to wait a bit. :lol: ahh domestic chores ^_^

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

At the end of the tunnel there is always light!

Our internet is back and so is the power to the city! HOORAY!! It's great to feel normal again! SO. What did I do in my days of no internet? Why I was sewing of course ^_^ and maybe playing a little Lego Indiana Jones as well.Note the infamous "sweater pumpkin" that I've been talking about making for a few days now :lol: it's MADE! And I made a bigger one too ^_^I also just love the way these came out ^_^

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Blow The Man Down, Blow The Man Down....

Oh my goodness. I can't believe the wind we had here on Sunday. It was bonkers, beyond bonkers. I'm talking sustained 60 mph winds, with gusts between 70-80 mph :LOL: It was CRAZY! And I was home alone with my cat while my fiance was at a car race in Mid-Ohio. So while we didn't get blown away and we were FAR from the worst of the damage they were reporting on Sunday night that there were nearly 200,000 customers without power.So Sunday was an intersting evening. After the wind died down (which wasn't till 9pm) it was dark, but you could hear the chainsaws roaring to life all over the neighborhood. I actually able to get to our local grocery store which hadn't lost power and get a few necessities. It was chaos though. You'd thought the world had gone mad the way people were tearing thru the place :( It's like we depend so much on electricity any more that when it's suddenly gone people act like they can no longer survive. It's ridiculous and sad all at once.We didn't loose power at our house, but everyone on the blocks around mine did. In fact 90% of Vandalia was without power all of Sunday night and most of Monday thru the following evening. When my fiance, Chris, finally did get home. He was very tired and had lots of stories to tell. The biggest one being that Cincinnati was almost entirely without power. That meant that it was REALLY bad and that the damage was very widespread. While we didn't loose power we did loose internet/cable. I'm very grateful that we didn't loose power, but it made communication or finding out what was happening very difficult especially since most local radio stations were having issues broadcasting because the wind knocked them off the air!The next morning I couldn't believe how many trees had been downed and uprooted. On Monday I actually drug myself into work (though we couldn't do anything because the phones were down and so was the internet (which my job depends on)). So I left at 11am to go home and help Chris start burning the numerous branches and trees that had fallen. Our back door neighbor was the worst on our block. She had 3 large silver maples and all three had substaintial sections missing and laying in her yard. Fortunately none of them hit the house. So we burned and chopped and drug and rustled thru piles of wood and leaves all of Monday. That evening I made some pumpkin bread and took it around to my neighbors to give them a little boost :) Chris' mom and step dad had to come over because they are on a well pump and without electricity it doesn't work. They were able to do some laundry and get showers. My family had minor damage to their house including loosing siding on the south facing side. They are still without power it's going on 3 days for them. I called them on their cell and their fine, but I still worry about them :( Some houses in our neighborhood lost sections of shingles and entire roofs! I don't remember how many deaths happened, but it's been a REALLY rough week so far. The restoration on power to our area as well as most of southwest Ohio are spanning into the weekend. Not having the internet or cable has allowed me to stay busy sewing and creating which is a definitely plus!It COULD be worse. I know we deal with tornadoes and earthquakes here in the midwest, but a mini-hurricane seems different :lol:I have interenet access here at work so I'll be able to access Etsy, but unfortunately updates to my store won't be happening any time soon. I apologize, but helping my neighbors get their yards cleared and making sure families are provided for falls first ^_^Take care and hold tight!

Monday, September 1, 2008

What the Deuce?

I think the office ick is making it's rounds again so my relaxing three day weekend has turned into a bit of a flu-fest instead :( Going to go to the doctor tomorrow as everything just aches. Hate that feeling. I can't do anything sewing related. I managed to eek out a small sweater pumpkin that looks lovely and when I feel better I'll have pictures up for you all to see, promise :)I did manage to make 2 loaves of bread on Friday. They were wonderful. I'm going to try a different recipe later in the week after I'm better. It was very tasty ^_^Till then take care and if you're on the Gulf Coast hope you're hanging in there! My prayers are with you!!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

That is all

Courage is not simply one of the virtues, but the form of every virtue at the testing point. ~C.S. Lewis

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

The Baker Inside

The flour is bought.The eggs are ready.Yeast is ready to proof.Everything is good to go and the baker is about to burst out in one floury-induced bread bomb :lol:Well, this weekend the baker will be bursting out. There's not enough time to make sure the dough rises properly during the weekdays. Remember good bread takes TIME.I'm considering rearranging our refridgerator so I can put the dough in there to slow the rising. I want this bread to be very tasty. I've never tried placing it in a cooler environment, but the longer it takes to set up the more flavor it will have.I'm making a Honey Wheat Loaf. 2 loaves to be exact and probably 2-4 more on Sunday and if I can afford it some more on Monday (over the Labor Day Holiday if weren't not cooking out or anything) and I'll have to get more flour, butter, eggs and probably honey at that point. I'm trying the King Arthur Flour this go around. I recently bought their whole-wheat baking book. OMG, is it filled with delicious things or what!I'm especially excited to try ALL of their reciepes that involve pumpkin. I should make pumpkin stuff year round. It's too good to keep to one season or holiday for that matter. Can you imagine having cake only once a year? Oh the horror!Having pumpkin only in the Fall is like some weird social standard. It's like if I had it or baked it any other time I'd be banned from baking for ever.Nah. Who the heck needs to live up social expectations. It's just pumpkin. I wonder if i could make a Whole Wheat Pumpkin bread. AHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!! Why must it ONLY be Wednesday!!!! Saturday needs to hurry up.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Hey Mr. Postman!

Shipping seems to be a big ta-do on Etsy. Rightly so, I mean no one wants to be overcharged and most buyers are also sellers so they can easily calculate the shipping surcharges.I'm currently going thru the mundane process of getting my shipping prices to where they need to be. I'd like to be as accurate as possible while keeping in line with the general business expense stuffs like (packaging, wrappings, thankyous) things that generally add a bit of weight to the overall shipping price.This is important not just to my customers but to me :) I can't very well expect to be doing this in the middle of the Holiday season, egads no!So I've been wrapping each item as if it were about to go off to their new home and weighing them on my scale. Now you might be thinking, well Rebekah, you should've done this when you initally started selling your wares! I did! Honest! It's just that I was placing them (on the advice of a fellow seller) under a different classification AND with selling more stuffed animals my packaging is evolving. It's good to revamp them now and not, say a year or even months down the road.My work bench is covered with packaging supplies, tape, bits of ribbon and a scale SOMEWHERE in all that colorful all looks like the Mail Fairy exploded in there. *Note to self, clean craft room Sunday* This all lead to a funny conversation with the postman at the post office yesterday afternoon. I asked him how they classified my packages and he said something along the lines of, "If it's over 3/4 of an in. (aka padded mailers or slightly bulky so it can just go thru the sorting machines) they classify it as a parcel."Well, let's just say the magic lightbulb clicked on above my head. Duh! Of COURSE they'd be a parcel! No wonder I can't pin down better rates for my customer :LoL: good grief.And now that my genius head is screwed back on facing front I've got my work cut out for me this weekend. BUT I'm still new to this and I learn good stuff everyday. Here's hoping I keep getting better and never stop ^_^

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Time & Balance vs. The Glass of Water

It’s hard sometimes as a crafter, an artist, or even just an average human being to feel inspired ALL the time. There are some people that seem to have a knack for finding inspiration anytime, anywhere …but not all of us are that tuned in.I think I’ve found a bit of new inspiration today despite feeling overwhelmed with ideas in my head and life in general. It boggles me that people have time to take pictures, upload photos, converse with friends, list items, provide wonderful customer service over the internet and then above all else…create. It amazes me. I’m great at multi-tasking but I don’t think I’ve found that balance yet or that schedule :lol: I think working full-time is partly to blame, but I know other artists whose lives are full of wobbly toddlers and hyper active pets, sports loving husbands and nagging parents. And yet they still manage to create and balance. I have no excuse to just pine at not being able to create or that I supposedly don’t have “time” to make anything special. My things ARE special and to find inspiration I have to believe that what I’m creating will one day bring a glint of humor into someone’s eyes.It’s hard though. Work drains my creativity and a lot of my emotional energy. It’s not a healthy environment for me and I’m looking hard to find new employment, so that added stress dampens the drive a bit, but not enough to stop me.I need to start a new creative tablet for my ideas again as my old one has been ruined by a glass of water. Don’t worry I was able to salvage most of my ideas and I do have a spreadsheet with the names of my creations. Not all is lost!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Posty McPosterson

I've been making new friends and creating new cats Waves at BoxingDay It's a good thing I took so many pictures yesterday as it's suddenly been raining on and off the past few days.Which is good, but I think it's signaling the change of the seasons again. I can't wait for Fall it's the BEST ^_^ From the smells, to the cool crispness of the air, heck even the fresh apple cider chokes me up a little :lol:What do you love about fall? Maybe it's these!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Busy Busy Busy!

Gearing up for the Christmas season and a bit of fall items will be mixing in soon. I never thought that I would be speaking of Christmas at the end of July! Normally I'm very adamant about not celebrating or preparing for Christmas before Thanksgiving, I'm a traditionalists in that manner, but ever since I've opened on Etsy there's been this stirring of a gathering retail frenzy that I find, well, exciting!So I've been creating new items to post in my shop, more stuffed creations, a few tags, more tea totes. They are all ready to list once the Christmas retail season hits which from what I've heard should be close to September/October.I've set a personal goal of 5 sales for August, I will have 4 for July. I know to alot who may read this may think that 5 sales is not a lot, but I'm starting to get my footing and my fan base is growing. I want to leap, but I don't think I'm close enough to the "Etsy-edge" yet lol. So 5 sales feels like an achieveable goal :)Also I made my first stuffed creation last night using the EcoCraft fiberfill. I must say it's very soft and doesn't feel as abrasive as polyfil, but it's very fluffy and tends to float away in tiny bits. By the end of stuffing my felt animal I was lightly dusted in fiberfill. I might suggest wearing a mask to help keep pesky fibers from filling your nose. I had a bit of sneezing fit when I first started, but all was well shortly after.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Turn the water off!

I think I'm lost in the whole, remember to turn the water off while you brush thing. I don't know why it's so hard to remember to do it.Maybe it's because I just want to be able to spit and rinse it away immediately. Maybe it's the germaphob coming out in me.Whatever it is I should be more mindful of it.Also we don't have a dishwasher so we do all of our dishes by hand. This isn't a big deal, but I have to wonder if i'm just wasting water doing it by hand than by machine? I don't run the water constantly when I'm doing the dishes so I can't see us using a whole lot of it at once. Not sure.Also I made a new stuffie today ^_^ check him out tomorrow on Etsy. He's a black cat stuffed with felt scraps that were too small to use for anything other than stuffing :)Have a good evening, it's about to storm over by us so I need to dash off the computer here.........

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Battle of the 4-10's

I've been a long time advocate of being able to work 4 10 hr work days. Now before anyone starts yelling, OMG! are you nuts?! Here's the reasons:- Most people who work full time already devote this amount of time to their job anyways without even realizing it. It's become the "norm". We've learned to work thru lunch, eat at our desks, stay a little "after" hours. All this averages out to 10 hrs a day!- Most companies would benefit from this kind of rotational extra day off. Lending to more rested employees & less time off due to being exhaustion/sickness/general blahs- Then there's the environmental pluses. Less carbon emissions due to fewer commuters on the road. Buildings would be on stand-by so less energy from running a/c's to running computers would be used. AKA it saves energy and money. What company doesn't want to SAVE money?- But my biggest reason is because it would save me gas!At first my urging of management to consider this wasn't purely eco-friendly. I just wanted to have a random day off. I didn't care when it happened, that illusion of having 3 days instead of 2 seemed much better.However, with our purchase of a house last year and my increased commute time :-( This has become about my gas usage and the fact that our public transportation is a minus in the ease of use realm. Car pooling isn't in real heavy use around my parts either so that option bombed early on.I've been searching for closer employement as driving 30-50 min (traffic dependant) each morning/afternoon really sucks. Not to mention should gas continue it's epic climb I'll soon be like many others, working just to pay for gas to GET to work.Our company hasn't exactly been kind on this idea. Regardless if Utah is issuing a statewide test run of this very idea for their state employees. I mean there are definitely 2 sides to whether or not this is a good idea. Read the comments under that article and you'll see what I mean. Just about everyone of those comments are very valid and have good points.A whole state is giving it the ol' go and our company is sitting here with their thumbs up their butt trying to determine if this is really a "feasible" option.Please. Like the benefits don't already outweigh the cons on this one. I will continue to lightly nudge and see what comes of it. I heard it may be addressed again in the Fall of this year. I wish progress wasn't so slow to take hold in these parts.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Plastic Paradise

Yesterday was grocery shopping day. We've wrangled a nice collection of those cloth market bags that seem to be springing up everywhere. They're incredibly nice when you have a lot to carry. Not only do they hold much more than the average plastic bag, but they're strong and way more durable.Walking thru the store picking up my usual items I realized that everything I looked at was in some way covered in plastic. I felt kind of sad. I mean there's a plastic landmass in the Pacific Ocean and here I am buying plastic merchandise. I stood there and thought for a second. Well I can't eliminate ALL the plastic I consume, but I can control it at least.So with that in mind I opted to keep my bananas out of the flimsy produce bag. I bought applesause in a glass jar instead of in the snack packs, which was remarkably CHEAPER by 50 cents! I found juice in a glass bottle (same brand & flavor) for the same price as a plastic one.Unfortunately I realized that all this "concious" avoidance of plastic was taking up time. I also realized that wouldn't be able to avoid EVERYTHING plastic. I don't think anyone can these days. My total bill was about equal to what I've already been spending so avoiding the stuff certainly didn't seem to impact my wallet.It's not possible to eliminate it right now, at least not for me. I know you can always recycle it, but glass seems to be a better option than promoting the plastic industry recycled or not.I do have some fabulous friends over at Etsy who are making it a little easier to take the "P" out of my life. :lol:fabric sandwhich bags & wraps: bags: and next step is to find out if buying fresh cut meat from my local meat shop will not be wrapped in plastic but instead in butcher paper where I can take it home and foil it instead. I don't know if this will work, but I'm stepping it up. Plus I'll be supporting the local industry ^_^
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