Ah, everything is better through my eyes.

You all are too sweet! I'm out of my funk and many thanks to a couple of you for leaving such sweet posts over the past day or so. I needed those :)

I'm back to myself again. My brother is coming over with home made mac and cheese (and my mom) for lunch, I've taken pictures of yarn, and I slept for a good 18 hours yesterday. I was coming down with a bit of a stomach bug the night I wrote my last post, so perhaps that is one reason I was in a funk. Thankfully, I was able to sleep through most of my stomach bug yesterday and woke up MUCH better today.

I vow to spend the rest of my holiday break from work in a good mood, in my PJs, and browsing through cook books for some delicious recipes (one of my favorite activities).

I actually had planned to use my bread machine a few times this week. I got one for Christmas from my sweet boy and it started smoking and smelling of burning plastic the first time I used it. I'm going to give it another shot to see if that was just some first use issues. If it does it again, it's going back to the store. I'll be disappointed, but it won't be the end of the world. I've baked great bread on my own before, but something about the bread machine was appealing... easy... simple. Hopefully it works.

Well, it looks like it's going to be a beautiful day outside. Blue skies, cold and crisp, and clear. I think I'll go make some tea, grab a blanket and a cookbook and go sit on my front porch and enjoy it.

Happy New Years Eve everyone!


These Eyes Aren't Mine

EDIT: I think finding some screen, a cool and funky frame, and some bright paint will at least brighten tomorrow - I shall head to the store... in the morning.

I really feel like I've woken up looking through another person's eyes. I've been down today, really down. In fact, I've kind of not cared about a single thing that happened today except for the offloading of several cases of beer and many bottles of wine to the "new" event planners at work. Buhbye wine and beer that take up storage space in my office. It's been nice knowing you.

I'm not sure why I've been down but I'm not seeing the positive in things today. I'm sure it's a combination of things.

It might be that for well over a month I had been looking forward to my time off of work that I could spend relaxing in my PJs with my sweet boy. Due to unforseen circumstances, it looks like I'll be seeing his backside while he's walking out of the room to play video games with his best friend and his nephew all week. I'm not complaining that he gets to see them, I'm just dissapointed that I won't.

Tonight kind of topped it all off when my favorite vintage service platter shattered (not at my hands, which kind of makes it worse). I've looked all over Etsy and Ebay and I can't find another one. When I mentioned to the sweet boy that his breaking it meant he had to go flea market shopping with me to find it, he sounded less than thrilled. He used to at least fake that he liked going.

It's not only that I feel down, I don't want to list new things on Etsy, I don't want to photograph my lovely yarn, or spin my even lovlier wool. I just want to go sit in bed and read. I hate feeling like this and hope to snap out of it soon so I'll be ready to sit and think about New Year's resolutions, shop updates for the new year, future spring cleaning (I'm a nerd and like spring cleaning), winter planning for my summer garden, and so on. I've only got 6 more days off of work and I need to spend those days happy, not in a funk.

Send me good thoughts, crafty and uplifting thoughts. I need them!

Now, to drink some coffee and then go to bed (coffee has no effect on me).

The picture above was taken a couple of years ago during some snow (or maybe just last year, I've lost track). The picture kind of puts into an image how I feel but I also think that the scenery there would brighten my mood if only I could look out my front window and see that.


Sunday Projects

I worked on a few projects today other than the usual Sunday laundry.

I made cookies...

lots and lots of cookies...

and I recreated one of my favorite winter scenes for a Santa hat decorating contest at work.

I think I'll at least have a shot.


Many Things

There are so many things I wish to do with my jewelry business in the near year. So many people are talking of branching out their business. Most of them are referring to finding multiple venues to sell on and while I might look into that, it isn't my only focus. I want to branch out in the type of materials I use.

I've been wanting to up the material quality on my bracelets for some time now and I think with January comes a chance to do that. I want to begin to only offer them in sterling and copper. I also want to being to offer sterling earings. I'll keep the necklaces and brass earrings as they are - I might add in a few silver necklaces, but that isn't going to be my focus... at least I don't think it is.

I've also got some new design ideas up my sleeve (I've already made one into something as seen above). I have not made most of them yet to see how they come across out of my head, but I hope to have to do that over the holidays.

Many exciting things will be coming, that I promise. Goodnight all!


Waiting... not so patiently

The time off of work that I'm taking around Christmas can not come quickly enough. I've been trying to wait patiently for December 23 to come around, but patience just isn't something I have right now. Work has really been wearing me out lately. I've worked many nights over the past four weeks and that is on top of an already 40 hour a week schedule. I've been meeting myself coming and I'm about to crumple in a heap in my office doorway and claim defeat.

I'm basically 2 managers at work - Event Manager and Artist Hospitality/Activities Manager. Those are not my official titles but I think they would make the most sense to those reading my blog. Both of those jobs require a very full schedule during the work day full of communicating with people all over the country, chasing them down most of the time, communicating with just about everyone at work, calling people, writing things down, scheduling things, changing things, paying for things, changing things again, writing more things down, sending things out, making sure the people I sent things out to got those things, oh, change them again so update every single person you know about the change and finally, refusing to change anything else. Days like that, which are many, leave me tired and on the verge of brain dead. Aside from the above, I find myself at work many nights managing receptions, events, meet and greets, artist activities backstage, more receptions, and on and on and on. It's great fun, but it really is a lot for one person to do.

I've been making my case that I can't be both of those positions any longer. If I do really well with one, the other suffers and when I start to pay attention to the other, the first starts to fall through the cracks. I can't help it, it's how it goes. Finally it made sense to everyone else to begin to shift things around and special events are leaving my plate. I had to give something up and I took this job for the experience working with artists and performing arts programming. I gained some amazing experience with the special events, but I'll let someone else gain that experience now.

Take everything I've said and multiply it by 4.5 years and you'll know why I'm ready for my Christmas break. I'll be taking about 2 weeks off of work (with a couple of days in the office thrown in for good measure) and I plan on doing some sleeping, heavy sleeping, knitting, spinning, reading, sleeping, reading, watching movies and sleeping. I'll be surprised if I change out of my comfy clothes for anything at all. I have a fair sized collection of sleep plants with penguins on them and I plan to figure out a way to wear them the entire time I'm on break. Erin in her penguin pants NOT working. It sounds good to me.

And now I shall leave you with a bright, sunny, cheery yellow yarn. Enjoy.



I used to be the kind of person who needed the approval of others to validate what I do. If I made food, I didn't really know if it was good unless someone told me it was. If I hung up some pictures in a way I liked, it didn't look good until someone told me it did. This went for most things.

As I've grown up, I've moved away from the need for that validation. If I make a necklace I like, I'm going to wear it all over the place whether people like it or not. Same goes for food, decor, and projects at work. I do it my way if that way is the way I like.

However, every now and then, validation comes along when you lease expect it. I have an account on Twitter which allows me to keep up with shops I love on Etsy, friends that were left behind in Texas when I moved north, blog writers I follow and just crafting in general. Today the Twitter account that Etsy manages Twittered (what you call a post on Twitter) about my Desert Breeze necklace. YES - they noticed my sweet, little necklace. And now, hopefully, so will their followers.

No, I did not need the validation that my little necklace is nice from Etsy admin, but it sure does feel warm and fuzzy that I got it anyways. Proof of the post is seen below - you can't click on the link, but I assure you, it linked to my necklace.

Okay - enough excitement.

I sat down at my crafting table last night to make some new earrings for the Walton Arts Center Holiday Bazaar. I started out just remaking some of the more popular earrings but freshening up the look with some new beads. I also made some new designs that I hope do well. All are out of antiqued brass findings since that seems to be my favorite look right now, but that also seems to be my customers favorite look right now.

Sitting at my table has me looking forward to the many days off I'll have around Christmas. I have some new ideas in my head for jewelry designs and I'm dying to have enough time to sit and do them. I want to beef my bracelets up, use more silver, more gemstones, and more vintage beads. I think there is a market for pricier bracelets and I want to test it out. Don't worry, I'll still be making the ones I have now, but new items are good... right? WAIT, that is asking for validation.

I don't do that.

Happy Thursday fellow bloggers.


Just one more

Just one more treasury: It seems as though my winter themed bracelets are doing well as far as treasuries go. Hopefully some of my winter themed necklaces will do the same. I found a batch of photos that I had forgotten about this evening. I'm quite happy that I edited and posted some of the items as one sold right out from under me.

Buhbye last of my Autumn Leaves necklaces.

And hello Berry Cluster -

Treasury Love

It seems a little bracelet of mine has been featured in a couple of treasuries this week. I have listed a few bracelets this month, but other than that, they have not been receiving the attention from me that they used to. These treasuries have inspired me to sit down with my wire and needles and start making them again.


I've been busy

Okay okay, so I haven't been paying attention to my blog in well over a week but I've got a good reason.

See, I've been busy. Spinning is getting easier and easier for me which makes me want to do it more and more. It also helps that people buy it so there is even more motivation behind the spinning. Yes, money for Christmas presents is a strong, strong motivator.

I've also been working on getting my stuff ready to sell up at Walton Arts Center this month. My lovely goodies will be on display with a few other local artists in the gallery up at work during all public performances of A Christmas Carol (closed today), CeCe Winans, and Spamalot. That is a lot of traffic and hopefully I'll sell out of items. Sure, that might mean and empty Etsy shop, but I'll be sure to fill it up again.

I've also been sick all week with a cold. This one has really beat me. I spent many hours at home on the couch when I should have been at work, but I think it's finally on the decline - so wish me well.

Well, I'm off to watch some more storm chasers and spin some more yarn.


Happy Birthday to Me!!!

Well, I'm still 53 minutes away from November 27 - but I can celebrate a tad bit early... right? Etsy has already wished me happy day in both of my shops and many a Facebook friend has sent me nice, warm wishes... and what's this I spy on my porch? A package from my bestest sending me goodies from James Avery?How did she know I just got the new catalog yesterday and was aching for some new James Avery?

My plans for my birthday include Thanksgiving dinner with the family, a few glasses of white wine, and hopefully a good handful of sales on Etsy since I'm having a sale... but we'll see.

I hope everyone in the States has a wonderful Thanksgiving.

Nudge, Nudge

Just a very friendly reminder that I will be participating in the Etsy HolidayFest November 27 - December 1. Both of my shops, IdyllHands and WoolyHands will have free first class shipping - worldwide - during that time and maybe some other special sales over the course of the 4 days.

By Wednesday night, I'll have all of my new items listed so you'll have plenty to shop from.

I'm not the only participate in this sale, there are a plethora of shops joining in and Heather over at HeatherKnitz has organized quite the website for this sale. The website is here: Holiday EtsyFest
You can browse through the different catagories and stock up on handmade items right from home while sitting in your PJs this weekend. No need to get dressed up to go out.

Now, get on over to Etsy (starting tomorrow) and do some shopping!



Some new items showed up in my shop tonight - as promised (maybe just a bit late). I'll be adding even more tomorrow night, and the rest of my new items on Wednesday. IF you're lucky, I might even have a new knit bracelet up before the weekend.

All of this is in preparation for the Holiday Etsy Fest that I am taking place in starting Thursday. Yeah, yeah - I still haven't come up with my sale, but at least I'm making headway on the shop inventory. I have some bracelets and many more necklace laying around, so please check back - they make GREAT Christmas gifts for your friends, loved ones and even yourself!

I've been extremely tired lately and yesterday I woke up with a bit of a pain in my throat. It never fails, come Thanksgiving each year I catch a cold. I'm really hoping this doesn't pan out and it goes away. I swabbed some nasty gel stuff up my nose today (courtesy of Dianna) and supposedly that is miracle gel and I won't get sick. Let's hope not, I've got movies to watch and yarn to spin during my long weekend coming up.

I hope everyone has had a great weekend and great Monday.


Must they tease me?

Over the past year I have collected a handful of prints on Etsy. This one is my favorite:
It is from Lineanongrata.etsy.com. Julia, the artist, also has a wonderful blog here. Well, I was happy and content with my knitting print until I saw this little gem in her shop this morning:Do I really need to buy new prints? I'll wait until Christmas comes and goes. If my family doesn't snatch it up for me, I'll buy it then.


Hello, my name is Erin...

and I'm a Christmas addict.

Those who know me, and know me well, know that I am a sucker for all things Christmas. Oh yes, I'm all for the true meaning of Christmas, being with family, sharing the love, etc - but man, oh man, the things that come in the Christmas package are great too. There are greeting cards, wrapping paper, pretty decorations, stockings, ribbons, music, iconic images (snow, cute main street scenes, etc), and so much more.

Yes, I admit, I fall into the commercialism of it all.

To feed it, I search out wonderful Christmas promotions and deals that all start happening this time of year. I think I've hit the jackpot today. The EtsyGreetings street team is having a huge greeting card giveaway. Go to their blog here and read all about it. Rest assured, I'm signing up for all of them!


Two times a charm?

This little gem sold twice today pushing my sales up to 160 on Etsy (7 for the Orbital design alone). I did a happy dance, but not too much of one. It's late and my body can only handle so much dancing when it's late.

I've been doing a lot of knitting this weekend. My crafting room is still in shambles, but the new floor in that room is down and I should be able to move stuff back in tomorrow night. Then I'll be able to package all of the orders and special gifties (all purchases in November get a free gift) and get those in the mail on Tuesday morning.

I think that is all I have to say tonight. I had plans to update my street team blog too, but I'm not feeling as talkative as I thought I was. Perhaps I'll have more to say tomorrow.


Holiday EtsyFest

The Holiday EtsyFest is an Etsy wide sale on November 27 (my birthday and Thanksgiving) - December 1. There are a TON of Etsy shops participating and I am one of them. I'm still thinking hard about what my sale will be - but rest assured it will be worth your time to come do some shopping then.

And just in time for some promotions for this sale both of my shops were included in the same treasury for the Holiday EtsyFest! I'm flattered. In fact - it included two of my favorite items. It included my Green Goddess Yarn from Woolyhands and my Green Oribtal necklace from Idyllhands. Hoorah!Psst - if you want to be a part of this sale, and you do, go here to read about it: http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=5903305
and go here to sign up: http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=5903349


Put On Your Red Shoes...

I had to dress up tonight for the Theatre Squared Gala. "Having" to dress up can mean a lot of things to a lot of people. Some people rummage through their closet until they find something, some people wear the same thing they wore to work earlier in the day, I take it as an opportunity for an afternoon of shopping. I shopped at Gap, at NY&CO, at JCPenny (not in the Mommy Jeans section for you old SNL fans) and at... and I'm ashamed to type this... Forever 21. Oh, did I say shopped? I meant that I spent money at those places. I got some stuff here, some stuff there, some shoes at that place, some jewelry at another place.

After trying everything on - again - at home, I decided on a dress I already owned and a new pair of shoes. Amazing how a new pair of shoes is all you need sometimes. Especially when the new pair of shoes are bright red, patent leather. Mmmmm. Delicious.

I'm sure I was the hit of the gala and all the ladies, and some of the men, wished they were me. All because of the shoes. It's okay to be jealous. :)

In all seriousness. I'm a bit disgusted that I bought as much as I did not because of what it cost, but because of how long it's going to take on Sunday to return all that I didn't wear... oh, I'm keeping the wool purse from Gap and the 2nd pair of red shoes. They are darker than the pair in the picture and different enough to make them count as a necessity.

But everything else is going back.

I promise.



When I first started selling on Etsy I wanted to be very professional and that meant that I thought people needed to take me seriously to accept that I make nice things, good things. Over the past year I've found shops on Etsy that have personalities. Beyond the pictures, beyond the items, heck, beyond the description of the items. There is a personality there. That often comes from the profile.

Before yesterday, my profile was informative and described me as a professional and as an artist or crafter or whatever I am. However, thanks to some BSing that took place with my sister yesterday afternoon, I changed my profile. It's all the truth but not the usual "I'm just a knitting living here doing this, graduating from that, working here...". I tweaked it, gave it personality, gave it some attitude.

I'm quite happy wtih my new profile - you can read it here: READ IT - YOU KNOW YOU WANT TO!



Comfort can be a lot of things to a lot of different people. Right now, to me, comfort is knowing that my mom is getting better. Cancer is a long, ugly road, but for now, she's doing well and she's getting stronger. I find a lot of comfort in that.

For the first 7 weeks of this brain cancer ordeal, I found myself eating out a lot. I was constantly exhausted just from thinking about it. It's done the number on my health and energy. This week I decided to change that. I've cooked at home almost every evening since my return from Little Rock. I love cooking, I'm pretty sure I've said that a few times, but for some reason, I had let it go away from me for all of September and most of October. It's back now and with cooking at home I hope comes better health, better nights of sleep, less yawns during the day at work, and better cognitive reasoning (for those who have known me for the past couple of months, you know I've been left staring at you like a deer in the headlights when you ask me something that requires thought).

Tonight I cooked beans... okay, I started them this morning... and cornbread. Yum, comfort food for a comfortable week.

I also made a lot of new items for the upcoming holiday trunk show this week. It's amazing how I've had time to do these things for weeks but thought I didn't have time at all. What a change the surgery in Little Rock has made.


Holiday Trunk Show

I've been busy preparing for a Holiday Trunk Show that I'm participating in on Saturday. A fellow AREtsian, NightSkyProducts, told the street team about the event and I jumped on board. I will be joining a few local artists/crafters for this show. There will be soap, paper goods, jewelry, scarves, massages, food and of course, wine! We'll also have door prizes and I'm offering a free gift to anyone I invite who brings a friend with them.

This will be the perfect opportunity to shop locally for Christmas and support the local economy and some local artists/crafters. If you're around here and want to come, leave a comment here and I'll send you more information.

The items pictured here are some of the new things you'll see at this show. Other items I'll have there are my knit bracelets, necklaces, knit scarves and handspun yarn for those who are crafters.

By the way - THIS rocks my face off.

Happy Election Day

In honor of this very important day, I'm having an Election Day Special in both of my Etsy shops. If you voted in this election - you can get free domestic (US) shipping on all of your purchases today only.

Shop here:


Just put "I voted" in the notes to seller and pay as usual. I will refund the amount of shipping.


Knock Knock

Hello? Anyone out there?

Sales have been a bit slow for me on Etsy this week - but then again, I've been a bit MIA from my regular life. I did keep up with things the best I could from Little Rock, but there was no time for crafting there. Perhaps when I'm back to being creative here the good karma will reward me on Etsy.

I did list some new things in my shop today. Oh, and I finished a scarf and started a new one. I'm madly getting ready for a sale on Saturday, November 8. It's a few local artists/crafters and I cannot wait. I'll post more information soon.

I took some time away from everything last night to sit with the Sweet Boy on the couch and watch a scary movie. We watched The Strangers. I'm not sure how much I liked it. It did startle me a few times and it wasn't a bad movie, but I want to know about the killers. I've always been interested in what makes the mean people be, well, mean. I'm not creepy with interest, just normal with interest. The movie ended allowing room for more movies, but still, I just want to know what the bad people were bad. Ah well.

Besides scary movie watching, we decorated the porch and had a big bowl full of candy ready to pass out. However, we got ZERO trick-or-treaters. I don't blame them - with kids getting shot and kidnapped last night, I would not let my kids out of the house either - that is, if I had kids. Is it really that bad out there?

I suppose I should call it a night and head up to bed to snuggle in with a good book.


6 random items

I was tagged by Rivulette the other day so here I go playing along...

Rulies McRulertons:
1. Link to the person who tagged you.
2. Post the rules on your blog.
3. Write six random things about yourself. (See below)
4. Tag six people at the end of your post and link to them. (See further below...)
5. Let each person know they've been tagged and leave a comment on their blog.
6. Let the tagger know when your entry is up.

Random things about yours truly:
1. I *heart* Indian food just about as much as I *heart* Italian food. I had forgotten until this week how much I love the stuff. I used to eat it almost weekly in Austin. I either had it for dinner at Star of India or went to the food court at Dobie and had it there for lunch. I found a restaurant in Little Rock while here this week (another Star of India... it's a popular restaurant name I suppose) and ate there twice. Yes, I had Indian food twice this week and I'm paying for it now.

2. I don't have a gall bladder. Yup, they ripped it out of me RIGHT after finals and RIGHT before graduation my last year of college. It made for some rough finals, but I think my teachers took pity on me and threw those tests out. I made sure and wore my ER bracelet that I had during my French final to prove I was in a bad way. I've decided it's not an important organ and I survived Indian food twice this week (first time since they took it away from me) so I suppose I'll survive the rest of my days without it.

3. I'm highly organized and have a system for life but I'm not anal. I don't like things being out of order or in disarray. I know where things are, I know where things need to be, and I like it that way.

4. I didn't know I wanted to "craft" until just a few years ago. I always had a box of art supplies (nice water colors, nice pastels, nice colored pencils, nice paper, etc - always nice, never cheapo) but I didn't keep up with things until I took up knitting. Knitting yarn led to knitting wire bracelets which led to making other jewelry which led back to knitting yarn and then on to spinning the stuff. I love it. If I could do that all day every day, I'd be set.

5. The town I live in is too small for me. I've visiting a few larger cities this past year (no, I'm not talking about NYC or San Francisco - although, those places are nice too) and realized I'm too big for where I live. It's beautiful, it's lovely, I love it, and all of those things, but opportunity is limited. I need something slightly larger and my next life plan is figuring out either how to get there or how to find more opportunity where I am.

6. I used to want a traditional wedding, but now I'm not so sure. I love, love, love my sweet boy and for the first time, I don't need to prove that to 100 people while wearing a $500 white dress. I want to do something for us - that is us - and that leaves us money for other things (like a fabu honeymoon in Europe?). I just don't have to show everyone that I can spend a lot of money on wedding favors.

There you go - 6 wonderfully, random things about me.

I shall tag the following people:


Hello from Little Rock

*pokes head into the blogging room* I'm still alive and still reading all of your blogs, I just haven't blogged since heading down to Little Rock. Oh, and I've been tagged as well - so I promise to attend to the tagging duties just as soon as I can (hopefully tomorrow).

For those sitting on the edge of your seat with anticipation, my mom is doing GREAT after quite the intensive surgery on Monday morning. It took 5 hours but the surgeon feels he removed most of the tumor and we're already seeing a difference in her actions. You know, I felt great prior to the surgery at my mom's choice to do it and I feel even better now knowing it was the best choice. We hope to head home, with mom, on Friday to check her in two some in-patient physical therapy for a couple of weeks and then back to my sister's home for the continuation of treatment.

Thank you all for your prayers and thoughts this week.

And also let me plug UAMS in Little Rock. It's been amazing. There are doctors EVERYWHERE you turn. This is a good thing and not what we were used to compared to what we experienced back home at 2 different hospitals.

My sister and my aunt have been here and when we couldn't be with my mom (recovery visiting hours were few and far between) we've been hitting up local yarn shops, crafts shops, shops of odd things, shops of not so odd things, and tasty eating establishments. I'd MUCH rather be here under other circumstances, but it has kept our mind off of things.

Anyways, 'tis bedtime so I'm off so I can rest up and be ready to tag some of you tomorrow. Goodnight.


Another Hobby

I picked up a new hobby this morning. I can now add needle felting to the list of things my hands like to do. I've only made this pumpkin, but rest assured, I will be making more. In fact, a lot of friends and family might be getting needle felted goodies for Christmas.

I went to the fiber festival here in Fayetteville this morning. I watched goats, sheep, and alpacas roam around and cry out to each other "Oh look, the guy with the shears is coming, run, bleat, do whatever you can because here he comes". It's cute in a weird way when they catch what they are about to shear and plop them down on their bottoms and start shearing. The little sheep just wiggle wiggle wiggle their legs until they finally give up. When it's all said in done, they don't run off, they just get up and go about their business. I know if I tried to shave my cat, she'd be done with humans for a LONG time and I wouldn't see her except when she needed to eat. The sheep didn't seem to care as much.

I bought some wool, some yarn, and some new needles with penguins on them. Oh, and I also bought a super secret Christmas present, but I can't talk about it... because it's a surprise! Rest assured, the recipient will LOVE it.

I'm off to finish laundry so I'll have clean clothes to take to Little Rock with me. Have a great remainder of the weekend!


Ode to a Caretaker

It's 9:45 PM and I feel like it's 3AM and I've been awake for days. I took my mom down to UAMS today for pre-op appointment. What I thought was supposed to be some time to sign papers and meet with the anesthesiologist turned into wait here, now go across that bridge, then that bridge, then those 2 ramps, up to this floor and wait some more. Now, go hurry up and wait over there. Okay, now, let me show you where to go wait at next... you get the picture. We visited 5 offices today and it took 4 hours, but that is over with. Mom slept most of the way home (3.5 hours) and we got home in a little less then 12 hours after we left. She was tired, I am tired, and I hope that everyone who answer all of my questions over and over again go home tonight, tired. I'm just ready to get her back down on Sunday and get this surgery over with. The next couple of months are going to be rough, but we're strong, we'll get through it (just as long as we don't have to head south to Little Rock every week).

My sister had volunteered to move mom to her house for a month or so. All I can say is "thank you". She takes care of her at night... all night and also takes care of her family. Mom really appreciates it and so do I. You are truly a wonderful, wonderful sister.


Well Hellooooo There

Well, hellooooo there my lovely. I see you've been lurking around my bag of handspun yarn just dying to be made into something. Here you are, all knitted up and looking fabulous. In fact, you're looking so good I think I'll smack a price on you and try and sell you to a new home... that is... if I can pry it off of my neck.

I am in love with this scarf. I knit it up from some yarn from Hobbledehoy (called Algebra) that I bought months ago. I used a random knit and drop stitch pattern on it to show off the hand spun nature of the yarn. I don't think I've ever used such beautiful yarn on a project. This is truly my favorite scarf yet (and I'm a HUGE fan of scarves, so that is quite the thing to say).

How about I give you a quick update from my craft fair. In short, it was fabulous. I sold more than I have at any show in the past and am almost out of scarves. I need to go buy some more novelty yarn that can be knit up into "inexpensive" scarves since those do very well at shows and I have 2 shows in November and the potential to sell at my place of employment for the Holiday season. I better get those needles cracking.

I want to let all of you know that I am unsure of how much blogging I'll be doing in the next week or 2. My mom had a wonderful 2nd opinion from a surgeon in Little Rock and we're heading down there this weekend to admit her for some surgery to attempt to remove as much of the brain tumor from hell that is taking a vacation in my mom's head. However, I will be hitting up the local fiber festival on Saturday before heading to Little Rock. I'm sure my mom would be upset if I missed it. I've been looking forward to it for a few months and she gets stressed if we put things that we've been looking forward to on hold for her. Perhaps I'll get some new yarn there to knit up while sitting in Little Rock.

So, for all of my Little Rock area AREtsy peeps - drop me a line. I'd love to meet some of you if I'm able to.

Until next time...


And I'm Spent

I just spent the better part of today running around gathering supplies for the craft show, setting said supplies up, battling rain, battling mud puddles 3 inches deep, avoiding not getting my mom's van stuck in the mud, driving, eating mediocre Chinese food, shopping, cutting out signs, and organizing. This weeks craft show is going down in the books as exhausting.

I usually haunt the local craft shows with my mom and my sister. As you know, my mom won't be up to sitting at a booth for 3 days and my sister is taking care of her (actually, she got in for a 2nd opinion down at UAMS in Little Rock with a top notch neuro surgeon, so they are headed down there tomorrow). Having 2 other people to craft fair with really does help you. You just have to worry about 1/3 of what you need to bring and you also have help putting up the tent and tables. Not today. Today I had to do it all. I almost asked for help, but how silly would that have been? Pretty silly. I can do a lot of things on my own, and this was one of them. The tent was pretty easy - the tables, however - not so much. They are the heavy, particle board tables that you see in schools, not a nice, light plastic one. It was muddy out so I couldn't really set them down to unfold them, so you can paint a nice picture of my struggles to set up tables. Eventually I got it and eventually I got everything out. I'll be sure to take pictures so you can all be impressed with my mad skills.

Today did bring one amazing thing to the table. It's fall guys. It got cold today (that's how it works up here, nice one day, cold the next) and the trees were BEAUTIFUL on the way through the Bella Vista country side. I hope to take pictures of that as well. I'll have to dig out some warm clothes to wrap up in for the mornings this week because I'm sure it will be a few feet on the other side of comfortable as far as cold goes in the mornings.

Because the fair is about 50 minutes away, I reserved a hotel room here for tomorrow night. I had a freebie because my job has perks, so I took advantage of it. Perhaps I'll take my computer and post wonderful things from the hotel room, or perhaps I'll take a book instead and just enjoy the quiet. Either way, a night in the hotel will be a mini-vacation and it will be fabulous.


Muffins Good

I actually did some baking this past weekend. Rawfish had posted a delicious recipe on her blog for some Pumpkin Oatmeal Chocolate Chip muffins and I could not resist. Let me tell you, they are DELICIOUS. You can find the recipe in her blog post here. I highly recommend these. They make a great breakfast muffin. If you are weird about eating chocolate chips with breakfast, I could easily see how dried cranberries or golden raisins would be great in these as well.

I'm not sure how much I'll be posting for the rest of this week. After working a half day tomorrow at work, I'll head out to set up for the Bella Vista Arts and Crafts Festival. I'll be there until Saturday evening. It will be a long few days, but totally worth it as I eat this craft fair stuff up. Hopefully I'll dip in to say "hey" on Twitter, but other than that, I'll be sleeping!


Blue Jean Baby

While watching some football this evening, I decided to work on predrafting some wool. Well, actually not having to predraft as much as I do to spin. I worked on a lovely skein today (spun from a couple of Hobbledehoy batts), seen here, and while I'm completely in love with it (my best thus far) it took me more than half of the UT vs. OU game. Okay, let me break that down: the spinning took not long at all, the predrafting took FOREVER. I took some "extra" batts that were sent to me with some orders earlier this year to work on the drafting.

I can't say that it was any better, I'll just keep working on it, but I can say that I ended up with something even more beautiful than I imagined when I started out. I just used two batts from Hobbledehoy that kind of matched (no blacks, lots of colors, and both had brown = matching). They were some freebie extras that she included in various orders. After spinning them up and plying them with some white thread (note to self - get clear thread next time you're out), I fell in love. This was the perfect yarn for a cowl or hat to wear with your favorite blue jeans. Hense the name "Blue Jean Baby". I'm really pleased with how spinning is turning out.

While still on my high from my yarn, I found a message that I had been featured in a blog. Designs by Vanessa (over at Etsy) featured my Autumn Splendor bracelet on her blog. It's a great blog and the post does get you in the mood for fall. I am truly thankful for all of the artists on Etsy that choose to feature other shops. It really shows the team and community that can be found on Etsy. Thank you.


That was me in grade 5 baby...

Okay, perhaps the original song is about grade 9, but by grade 9 I had left neon pink behind. I spun up my 3rd skein of yarn on my wheel tonight and it reminded me of one thing and one thing only, many of the outfits I sported in 5th grade.

Okay, before you laugh at me, admit it, if you are between the ages of 25 and 30, you most likely wore some neon pink back in the day. If you are shaking your head, you're a liar.

The colorful bit of yarn is from Cloudlover and is called Changeling. I loved it as a single but it had too many thin bits for me to use it as it was. So I dug up some hot pink wool (inspired by a jar of jelly beans sitting on my desk - seen at left) and spun that up pretty thin and plied the two together. I LOVE this skein. I love it more than the other two I've done. As I look at it, I think "Self, this is something you'd see for sale somewhere". That makes me feel good.

I'm happy.

I'm not only happy because of the yarn but because I've been give the opportunity to join in on a local trunk show at the beginning of November. NightSkyProducts, a local Etsian, invited people to partake in a trunk show and I jumped at the chance. Once I have more details after this weekend, I'll post them. Finally, doing something away from Etsy and away from HUGE craft shows. It's a new step for me.



If you notice that parts of your home smell a bit like a dead animal, chances are, there is a dead animal somewhere in your home. I noticed a funk yesterday when I got home from my sisters. My first thought was something in the kitchen had gone bad. After a small search (it's a small kitchen) I came up with no source of the funk. Again, today at lunch, I smelled the funk. The sweet boy said he threw away some turkey that had expired. Lunch meat can easily have a funk if it goes bad, so perhaps that was it. I walked in after work tonight and still, the funk was there.

After some deep sniffing, I decided only one thing can produce this funk, dead animal. I went straight to the basement in hopes that if there was dead animal, that dead animal was not in the main part of the house. It didn't take me long until I jumped out of my skin at the sight of a very large, recently dead, raccoon. It also didn't take long for a phone call to the sweet boy ended with "call the landlord, I don't do dead raccoons". I refuse to call the landlord about a dead animal. I will call him about the fact there was an animal in the house, but the dead animal was my problem.

Thankfully, I'm a girl with garden tools so off I went to open the garage/basement door, find my shovel and garden rake and go back to get the raccoon. I attempted to scoop him up which kind of creeped me out because he was soft but hard at the same time. Ugh, dead animal. I finally scooped him up with the help of the garden rake and carried him back towards the door. OH, wouldn't it figure. The garage door swung shut. I'd have to put this nasty thing down and open this door again. That was 15 seconds longer than I wanted to be dealing with dead raccoon.

I finally got him outside, carried him across the alley and put him in the back yard of the empty house behind us. I covered him up with some leaves. He'll decompose and make some good fertilizer... but not in my basement.

Now to go call the landlord and complain.



I think getting a spinning wheel was a VERY good thing for me right now. I needed something new to do, a new creative thing to rejuvenate my crafting spirit. My poor jewelry table is very neglected, but I can't sit there and work on necklaces when I have wool to spin into lovely, lovely yarn.

I finished my 2nd skein of yarn tonight. It's another small one measuring only 39 yards, but I'm still proud of it. I used a bonus batt of wool from Hobbledehoy that she had sent to me with a previous order. Once spun up into a single (see below), I plied it with some rainbow, shimmery thread that a local art teacher gave. So basically it's a free, practice skein. I couldn't be happier with my 2nd skein. I can see some things I would do differently next time, but it was practice, and I refuse to be hard on myself.

I am in denile that the weekend is at an end. I spent Friday night and all day Saturday with my mom. We talked, we went to the store (that is a VERY long story involving wheelchair carts provided by the store that do more harm than they help), drove around, ate burgers and drank milkshakes in the car, and watched copious amounts of tv (any amount more than 30 minutes a day is copious to me as I hardly watch TV and usually stick to DVDs). It was a good visit but a very, very exhausting one. Until the radiation and chemo shrink that friggin' tumor down, my mom's lost the use of her left side. Basically that means any time she needs up, I have to help. I don't know how nurses do it because I'm beat.

Today was spent working for the man. Actually, part of it was hardly work at all. I was lucky enough to have (I say "have" loosely) to meet Itzhak Perlman at the airport. I almost got to go to lunch with him and his pianist, Rohan De Silva, but I had to get back to work to set up for a reception. Yes, ask me how pissed off I am about that. I missed out on fried chicken with Itzhak for a Sunday lunch because I had to set up for a reception. The reception was great, but I'm sure, very sure lunch would have been better.

Ah well. At least I met him and rode around Fayetteville for a bit with him. I'll at that to my list of why my job is better than most.

Well, I'm off to shower, pop some Advil (my back is killing me) and hit the sack. Goodnight, all.


And voila!

A new spinning wheel = a new skein of yarn. It's only 37 yards in length, but it's lovely, oh so lovely.

I'm very pleased with the new wheel (you can get one for yourself at Ford4Him over on Etsy). I'm also quite pleased with spinning on the wheel. I was nervous about sitting down to spin tonight. I didn't have anyone to show me how, I was learning from videos and such online, and what other tips I had came via Twitter posts and Etsy convos, this made me nervous. But I spun, slowly, methodically, and voila - a skein.

If it wasn't past 10PM, I'd go dig up some more wooly batts and spin another skein. However; 'tis late and this girly still has a long week ahead of her.

Bon nuit.

It's finally here!

Say now - what could possibly be in this box that the post office had for me?

Why, it's my new spinning wheel. Hoorah!



Finally I've taken new photographs and even added some new items to my shop. It was long over due.

I'm not going to lie when I say that October is going to be hell for me. Work is insanely busy this month with shows and receptions out the yahoo (yes, out the yahoo). Aside from work, which is to be expected, I've got life to deal with. So life + work... oh yeah... + a huge craft show = one tired 27 year old. I'm looking forward to the craft show... and looking forward to some aspects of work (however, I wish the work part was spread out over a couple of months).

High points that work will bring in October:
Itzhak Perlman
Slow Dancing

So you see, there will be some wicked events taking place at Walton Arts Center in October. However, it is going to wear me to the bone.

Hopefully, the new photos I've taken will hold my shop over for a couple of weeks. Once I get through October's work schedule and craft show schedule, I can concentrate on some new items.

In other news, my spinning wheel arrived today, but the post office is holding it hostage. The postage wasn't enough, so I need to pay $5. No big deal, but kind of annoying. However, I'll have it in my hands tomorrow.



Smells Like...

Banana Bread!

This afternoon I had the feeling that cooler, fall like weather will soon be knocking on my door (like, on Wednesday - I checked the weather) and cooler, fall like weather calls for baking. Thankfully I had a bunch of overripe bananas just begging to be mushed up into some banana bread.

It JUST came out of the oven and mmmmm, it smells delicious. I think I'll go have a seat and fill my belly.


Christmas Sale Number 1 - check.

A friend of mine has already started her Christmas shopping with a few purchases from my shop and a custom order. I love custom orders. I always have, sometimes I wonder "why on earth did I say I'd do this" but in the end, I love them. This time I didn't grumble at all. I've needed a reason to make something, to sit at my table and play with my wire, chain, beads, and other goodies. I needed something to get my mind off of today.

Today was slightly more stressful (okay, extremely more) than usual. I suppose that is how cancer works. Some days are good, full of laughter and smiles and some are stressful, full of tears and the constant question of "why" going through my head.

I try to stay upbeat about this and for the most part I am. But sometimes I find myself thinking about my mom, some memories from the past, some from the way past, some from just a few days ago. They make me cry and I'm sure they will for a while. I don't know how this is going to turn out - hopefully it turns out well and she has many, many more years ahead of her. She's healthy, strong, positive, and loved. I just KNOW this will pass.

I just know it.

Sorry - this post went downhill fast, but it's hard to ignore what's on your mind. Perhaps some thoughts of future spinning adventures will cheer me up. Perhaps I'll go pick out some wool for my first attempt at the wheel... once it gets here.

Bon nuit.


I did it

I finally purchased a spinning wheel this evening. Now I'll be completely impatient waiting for it to arrive. I have so many wonderful batts to spin up and I'm not sure I'll make it until it gets here. I'll explode!


Update Successful

What? I listed a new item in my Etsy shop tonight? Get out!

It has taken me just about FOREVER to get some pictures I liked of some of my new items. By forever I mean at least 3 weeks. They are not exactly my favorite pics, but they will do. Once the sun comes out while I'm at home, I'll get some really great pictures, but for now, I feel like I can list items again. Oh, and even better picture new, Canon is going to fix my broken camera so I'll really be back to normal soon.

I also sat down and fixed a couple of necklaces that didn't survive when my craft show display took a nosedive off of the window sill the other day. They are as good as new. While that didn't lead to any new items, I did sit down and so something at my desk. I finally unpacked the last 2 boxes of crafting goodies I had this past Sunday when I added a shelf to my set up. Now it's a mess.

I said I unpacked them, I didn't say anything about organizing them.

I still have grandiose visions of really putting a dent in getting the crafting area cleaned up and the guest room organized before Friday night. Barbara, a roomie from my days in Austin, is coming up for a visit and to watch The Longhorns trample the Razorbacks on TV (didn't get tickets to the game in Austin, so coming up to Fayetteville is the next best thing I though, and so did Barbara). It's not that I need to impress Barbara with my mad organizational skills, it's just that I want it to look put together for my sake. I want to be a good hostess with a relaxing guest room and amazing guest bath.

Ah well, perhaps it will be done in time for my next visitor.

I already know what a certain one of you will say - something along the lines of "it's okay to take it easy". I know it is... I'm guilty of being just like my mom. Always going going going.