Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Save your shoulder & sling your baby!

When I was first pregnant with my daughter, the thought of "babywearing" was so foreign to me that I simply couldn't imagine why anyone would want to do it. I mean, WHY would you want to schlep your little one around ON you? Wouldn't that be uncomfortable? Heavy? Cumbersome?

And, in face, with the store-bought carriers out there (Baby Bjorn, etc.), it was. Trying to get all the straps in the right place, buckled, not twisted, tight enough, etc., was simply no fun. As such, I never used ours and just carried my daughter. And, as a result of THAT, I ended up with an unusual condition called Clavicular Osteolysis - my clavicle (collarbone) was dissolving, yes DISSOLVING, because of repetitive use. Hurt like a mother & there's no treatment for it. Thankfully, once you stop using your shoulder (yeah....) it will heal itself, and it has, but it was a MISERABLE two years of not being able to lift my arms above shoulder level.

Then, a friend asked me if I'd ever tried a ring sling. Lightweight, easy to use, endlessly adjustable even WITH the baby in it, and much prettier! And, it would SAVE my shoulder! AND they're big enough that my husband can use it, too! Hmmmm... what is this magical sling you're speaking of? :)

So, I asked my mother to make one for me (this was back before I was sewing). ;p


When baby #2 came along, I was fully prepared with a 100% silk sling that I'd made myself (like the one in the pic). The silk is such a great medium for slings; SUPER lightweight, breathable (natural fibers), folds up to about a 5" cube for easy transport, and SO stylish & pretty. Silk is also very strong; I can use it to carry my 35 lb., 3.5 year old in it, too! I had Alexander slung almost every time I picked him up; as such, my Clavicular Osteolysis didn't return. Yay!

It's also so great to be able to hold your little ones when they just need some "mama 'nuggle time" and still be able to get stuff done (like cooking, vacuuming, etc.)! :)

Now, I make and sell the slings on my Etsy shoppe. I wish I could give one to every new mama out there so they, too, can understand what a great thing baby wearing is!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Meet & Greet: Twisted Tree Studio

It’s been a while since my last feature of a fellow Etsian, but here goes! I’d like to introduce you all to Twisted Tree Studio; Eclectic Art & Exquisite Leather Work. The dynamic duo of Jen & Pat live in the Colorado Mountains near Pike’s Peak, which towers 14,000 feet over their little town. Pat is a mason my trade while Jen, a painter & muralist, has worked in offices and retail over the years. They make beautiful leather bags together and Jen also paints & sells murals and handles the web store.

Pat & Jen have been selling their bags for about 3 years, though Pat’s been into leatherworking since his 20’s and Jen has studied art her entire life. She studied in Holland and has an Art. Ed. Degree from here in the US. Believe it or not, though, she’s never taking a class on painting!

According to Jen, they pull their inspiration from “forest and the natural qualities of the hides and stunning stones”. In browsing their Etsy shop, Twisted Tree Studio, you’ll find a great contrast of smooth stone with rough leather and products that FEEL natural, not contrived. Check out the incredible quiver they have in their store now; it certainly makes me want to go in search of Legolas!

Twisted Tree Studio came to Etsy after much research into online communities. They have high hopes for their shop, planning to turn it into “a strong business, with customers all over the world, while maintaining our special level of unique one of a kind art and incomparable craftsmanship that will give us a way to create art for many years to come”. Given that they feel that great customer service and unique products are paramount, I’m sure their shop will be immensely successful!

Fun Facts
Favourite Colour: Purple/Blue
Favourite Food: Jen – Italian, Pat – Spicy, Hot Mexian
Favourite Drink: Coffee, or whiskey & Coke!
Favourite Travels: Jen’s in love with the UK but loves travelling anywhere (a gypsy at heart). They also want to explore jungles and Africa someday!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Here's What I'm Not

So, it occurred to me the other day that everyone can spout off thousands of words to describe what they are, who they are, why they are, where they are, etc., but ask them what they're NOT and you'll give them a few seconds pause. :)

As such, I've decided to start a new blog, Here's What I'm Not, that will take me on a 365 day journey of self-realization to help me discover who I AM by understanding what I'm NOT.

I'd love you to join me on this trip; you may even learn a few new words along the way!

Clock Chimes

Okay, so my father got us this beautiful (I think) wall clock that ticks & tocks & chimes... it's great and the chime is so pretty. However, the chime is also LOUD and with our small house we don't want it to chime the hours (and keep us & the kids up at night).

Dad promised me that the chime would wind down, too, and need to be re-wound to work. There are two separate winding pegs, one for the clock & one for the chime. We've had this thing running for about 6 months and it's STILL chiming... Does anyone have a pendulum clock like this?? Is it EVER going to wind down?? :)

Friday, February 19, 2010

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Eco-Friendly Lunchbox

So, today I tried out a new pattern and made up this super-cute, eco-friendly reusable lunchbox! you can find it at my Etsy shoppe!

This great, reusable lunchbox is perfect for kids or adults! The adorable chicken fabric is very cute and pretty apropos!

It includes a great interior space for holding lunch and/or snacks and has 2 exterior pockets, one flat (ideal for silverware) and one gusseted (would hold a small water bottle, like an Aquapod). The bag closes with velcro on the front flap and has a small handle for carrying!

The whole bag is lined with a light blue fabric and all pieces are lined & interfaced for strength, durability, and a touch of insulation.

Could double as a day/diaper bag, too!

Dimensions: 8" x 8" x 3"
Machine Washable

Monday, February 15, 2010

When you're sick.... STAY HOME!

Okay, so my husband came home last week complaining that several of his coworkers were in the office even though they were fighting off this stomach bug that's going around. Well, needless to say HE caught it and was out of commission for 2 days last week. I thought that the kids & I had avoided it (yay for Lysol!), but sure enough, last night around 12:30AM my 3.5 year old daughter wakes up wailing & flailing. After about 10 minutes of crying, she gives me the most pitiful look as says, "Mama, I'm gonna throw up". I grab her trash basket & just in time she vomits right into it.

So, she & I were up all night, with her throwing up every 30 minutes or so until about 3AM. Then it slowed down to once an hour until 6. Then, she threw up at 7:30AM and, thankfully, that seems to have been the end of it. It's now almost noon and she hasn't vomited since. The poor thing is so hungry & thirsty, but we're limiting her intake to a sip of water every 15 minutes. Crappy, but it seems to be working. I'm staving off food, though, until after her nap (if she'll let me!).

Anyway, the moral of this story is that IF YOU'RE SICK, STAY HOME. No, you're NOT so important at your office that they can't live without you for a day or two. I PROMISE, corporate America is NOT going to fall apart without you. WASH your hands a LOT, too!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Valentine Wishes

Happy Valentine's Day to all my followers! I hope you all are surrounded with love on this day and every day! :)

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

My first Etsy *Main* treasury!!

So, today I was able to snag my first Etsy treasury - the MAIN treasury, not the West one! I was inspired by the colours rust & teal and decided to see what I could find with those colors if I searched for the word "dirt".

Here's what I found!

Etsy Treasury

Diaper clutch w/ Built In Changing Pad

Okay, so by now you've all seen my beautiful & unique diaper clutch with built in changing pad, right?? This copyrighted design is a great item for chic moms on the go! It holds a 2 - 4 diapers, a wipe case, and a small bottle of powder or bum creme. There are also pockets on the front to slip in some cash or cards, which makes it great for quick trips to the park or the store!

It closes with velcro and some 'models' also come with a beautiful sash to tie around it. It looks like a gorgeous clutch when it's closed and no one would guess it's true purpose! Open it up, though, and it becomes a 12" x 20" changing pad, just the right size for protecting your little one's tush from foreign surfaces. I still use mine for my toddler!

These make great baby shower and Mother's Day gifts, too! I use only high-end designer fabrics, including Amy Butler, Michael Miller, Alexander Henry, and Heather Bailey. If there's a special fabric or colour combination you'd like, please don't hesitate to let me know!!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

New Design!

I wanted to post my newest design in my lip balm holder line; it has a flap that closes with a snap to ensure the "safety" of your balm! While not necessary for normal use, people who are rough with their keys will certainly appreciate this modification!!

I'd love to hear what you think!

Only the Best of Etsy Sample Packages GUEST GIVEAWAY!!!!

Only the Best of Etsy Sample Packages GUEST GIVEAWAY!!!!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Crafting with Kids

So, today we had a Kids Craft playgroup at my house & we felted soap for the kids to use in their baths! The kiddos (aged 3 - 6) wrapped their soap themselves in 2 - 3 layers of fleece. I did a very tiny bit of needle felting to hold the fleece ON the soap during the wet felting. Then, we put the soap in small zip-loc bags, added a bit of hot water, and set the kids to work.

A few of them actually felted their soap themselves, but some of them also got tired of rubbing a bar of soap and Mama had to step in. It actually worked out great because the moms had a great time, too, felting by hand!

All told, each child went home with his or her very own bar of soap and one mama took home one, too! I sure hope they have fun with them!

Scrub a dub!

Monday, February 1, 2010

New Key Fobs!

So, I'm listing a bunch of new key fobs and lip balm key fobs today... Joel Dewberry, Alexander Henry, Amy Butler... :) If you need one, or know someone who does, head over over to my sister shop, Key Fob Fairy at Etsy!