Thursday, March 31, 2011

Waiting on the Rain

Here we go, yet another New England rain/snow mix is coming our way to bring in early Spring....I am craving 60s, blue skies, and sunshine.  
In light of the pending weather, I created a new treasury collection on ETSY:
to try to boost my soon to be damp spirits.  It's a fun collection of unique items worth taking a peek at.  Here's a couple sneak peeks:
Cleopatra's Milk Bath
Cleopatra's Milk Bath by TerraVerde

Faux Leather Puzzle Denim Mini Dress with Sharp Neckline
Faux Leather Mini Dress by ArielSimone

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

A Lost Art: The Handwritten Note

This past week I’ve been writing out “Thank You” notes in response to all the generous gifts we recently received for our baby shower.  It got me thinking, other than a birthday card, when is the last time I took the time to write by hand a meaningful note to someone?  My husband and I often scribble each other little surprise messages to put in lunches, I write little “thank you” notes to customers with their orders, but these are all 1 or 2 liners.  In an age of technology, were e-mails and Skype have taken the place of snail mail for communication, writing or receiving a handwritten note or letter has gotten lost.  I genuinely enjoyed writing the thank you cards to all of our family and friends.  I found that it meant a lot to ME personally to be able to express in INK to our family and friends how truly grateful we are not just for their generous gifts, but that they are in our lives.    
 Working as a social worker over the last 9 years, I have on a rare occasion received a handwritten thank you from a client or their family member.  Those little handwritten expressions have always meant the world to me, more than a gift or even a verbal thank you would (not that either of those are not appreciated, depending on the source of course).  In reflecting on all of this, I believe that taking the time to write someone a thank you, in INK, is such a simply way to share joy, happiness, gratitude, and love in this life, and that you, the writer will benefit from it as much as your recipient.  So, I would like to encourage everyone to take the time this week to write out a thank you, a hello or to tell someone how much they mean to you in a handwritten card or letter.  See if it doesn’t add a little ray of happiness in your day as you leave it on a desk or post it at the postal office.  You might just get addicted!  
#29018 Royalty-Free Cartoon Clip Art Of A Dog Standing On His Hind Legs To Mail A Letter On A Contact Internet Web Icon by Andy Nortnik

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Tuesday Treasury: Wild and Beautiful

Wild and Beautiful is my new treasury on ETSY, a unique collection of items that are sure to inspire you both by their beauty, natural elements, and rustic outdoor feel.  Check it out!  Here's a few peeks:

Fine Art Photograph - Horny Toad - Free Shipping
Horny Toad by Ffotograff

Quirky Cute Woodland Creature Bracelet
Woodland Bracelet by Amradesigns

Vintage Basket Tote Bag Shabby Chic French Market Chiffon Flower


Thursday, March 24, 2011

Shout out Thursday: CSM Artglass Jewelry

Misty Pink Swirl Pendant and Earrings Set
Misty Pink Swirl Set
As part of my blog, Thursdays are for a SURPRISE "Shout Out" to another ETSY store for product information and a review, by me. These stores are ones that I have personally done business with and have been impressed with both their product and service. Today, lets chat about:

CSM Artglass Jewelry, a beautiful ETSY store featuring hand designed fused glass jewelry.  Here you will find gorgeous earring, pendants and sets as well as dichroic glass magnets and a few vintage items.  The owner uses only high quality items in all of her pieces and puts a lot of love into her work.  An art teacher for the last 30 years with a love for creating and painting, this wonderful shop owner was first introduced to the art of glass fusing because of her curious and creative husband who took a weekend class and got his wife first intrigued, then hooked. 

Regarding her work, CMS Artglass Jewelry states, " I hope you enjoy my artful and complex dichroic fused glass earrings and pendants. Each one of a kind piece is carefully designed and crafted with several layers of glass and several firings. Beautiful art takes time, care, and patience! This is why my shop is small--each piece gets alot of individual attention. Jewelry is priced according to size, materials and complexity."

Mystery Grab Bag
Mystery Grab Bag
I happen to love surprises!  Hence, I was very curious about the mystery grab bag  offerred by CMS Artglass Jewelry for a mere $9.50 including shipping.  I purchased the item and waited, excited, to see what the mail might bring.  My order arrived very quickly and I was thrilled!  Inside was a beautiful pair of fused glass earrings with a pretty opalescent appearance.  I happen to be an October birthday girl, so these suited me perfectly.  The earrings are very similar to the ones pictured here below the grab bag and are a steal at the grab bag price!

CMS Artglass Jewelry not only sells on ETSY, but has her work in a few boutique shops and museum gift shops.  She does craft shows on occasion but regarding selling on ETSY reports it "is a great venue--I don't have to haul around tables and display racks."  What a true statement!  I highly recommend this store, her work (and her grab bag).  It's a perfect place to pick up a gift for mom this Mother's Day, for a friend, and especially for YOU!  Click on the links below and check it out today!
Romantic Firelight Artglass Earrings
Romantic Firelight Earrings

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

And the Winner is...........

Thank you so much to everyone who has participated in my 1st blog giveaway and for making it a HUGE success!   We had 40 "legal" entries per the giveaway guidelines.  Each entry was assigned a number and the winner was selected using  That said, I am proud to announce that our winner is.....drum rolls, confetti, loud clapping please.....

Angela of ASDESIGNS!  (also known as Angelas Paper Art on ETSY).  Congratulations to Angela!  She has 48 hours to contact me or an alternate will be picked.

Are you interested in donating an item for a giveaway?  Looking to gain some publicity?  I would be happy to host one for you.  Just contact me!

Here's to dreaming of a true studio......

So here it is, my workspace.  It's not very exciting.......I dream of the day that I will have a room dedicated to just me and my many crafting supplies and work.  In the meantime, I'm making do.....

My dining room table is my work table...I was packing up some BNR orders here.  I also have a butcher block board I can put on the table to work on and protect this surface.

My supply closet (which will have a door soon).  It holds things for jewelry making, origami, scrap booking, magnets, bouquets and boutonnieres, metal smithing.......ect. ect. ect.  LOL. 

My other "closet" where I keep shipping materials and supplies.

And that's it.  I tend to travel around the house working on this or that project and am trying to keep it more contained.  I often flop on the couch with a bunch of jewelry making items and make a mess.  But it is comfy!  My hubby is very patient with me.  

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

To the Tune of My Beating Heart

Check out my newest treasury on ETSY by clicking the link below:
To the Tune of My Beating Heart

Inspired by both vintage and modern pieces, all in the classic black, white, and red theme, these are great items from amazing shops worth taking a look at!  Check it out.  Here's a few peeks:


Pretty Rose Earrings
Pretty Rose Earrings by Bear Ink

Signed fine art 8x10 photographic print
Fine Art Print by Aulani Photography


Monday, March 21, 2011

Giveaway Ends Tonight!

Just a friendly reminder, entries for the FREE GIVEAWAY for 2 PAIRs of EARRINGs are only accepted until tonight, at 9 p.m. EST.  Winner will be announced on Wednesday, March 23rd.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Shout Out Thursday: Lou Studio

As part of my blog, Thursdays are for a SURPRISE "Shout Out" to another ETSY store for product information and a review, by me. These stores are ones that I have personally done business with and have been impressed with both their product and service. Today, lets chat about:

Handmade Mini Card Assortment
Handmade Mini Card Assortment

Lou Studio, an ETSY hosted store specializing in handmade cards, paper crafts, supplies and gift items.  The owner is based out of Rockford, Illinois and has a beautiful array of paper goods to meet your gift and scrapbooking needs.  There are also great stamp sets for purchase for those inclined to do a little crafting of their own.

The shop features many beautiful handmade cards to choose from; these are not your average Hallmarks and are sure to impress!  I recently purchased a mini card set similar to the one picture here at the right.  The order was quickly shipped and the quality and attention to detail wonderful.  There are many one-of-a-kind cards, notebooks, and other fun surprises. 

In sharing a little about how the passion for creating started, Lou Studio writes "Way back when.....I saw a demonstration of rubber stamping and thermal embossing and I still remember the image. It was a beautiful and very detailed fan and embossed with gold powder.  So began my love of stamping and with that I began to enjoy creating other things like altered books,trinket boxes, cigar box purses,and lots of paper items. I enjoy many different stlyes so you will find my shop has a varied selection."

Friendship Card Shabby Chic
Friendship Card
So for all you handmade enthusiasts out there and those of you who don't know you are one yet, check out Lou Studio today! 

Click here for:
*Lou Studio on ETSY
*Contact Lou Studio
*Lou Studio on Twitter 

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Powers of Love, A Heartfelt Purpose

ETSY is a wonderful platform for handcraft artists to share their talents AND make a little money, maybe evening a living.  But how about bringing a family together?  That is just what Lisa, the owner and designer behind the online ETSY store “Powers of Love” is trying to do.
Newborn Earflap Aviator Hat-Photo Prop
Newborn Earflap Aviator Hat
     Lisa, a proud owner of 3 “very spoiled” dogs and wife of 13 years to a wonderful husband, learned to crochet when she was just a pre-teen.  A few years ago Lisa re-kindled her passion for crocheting when she discovered a love for making hats for family and friends.  She credits her niece for fanning the flame, asking her to make her a “beanie.”  When asked what her favorite items in her ETSY store are, she responded, “I like all the items in my shop, but if I had to pick a favorite I would say it is a toss-up between the slouchy newsboys and the black newsboy hat with star buttons. “
     So why did Lisa decide to turn her hobby into an online business?  And how did she decide on the Powers of Love name?  Lisa and her husband have longed to have children but have struggled with infertility.  After several years and a lot of research, the couple decided to pursue adoption through the foster care system.  Despite the defrayed cost compared to infant adoption, the process is still very expensive.  Under the encouragement of a family friend, Lisa opened her store to help raise money towards the adoption process.  While discussing the store, a friend made the comment to Lisa that she “should not give up hope of having a family because one day the ‘Powers of Love’ will bring us together with a child or children and make us a family.”  Lisa’s maiden name is Powers, and hence Powers of Love was born.  
      I asked Lisa to tell me a little more about her desire to be a mom and the decision to pursue adoption.  Her words on the subject are both moving and inspirational.  Grab a tissue as you read why both she and her husband are pursuing this option for parenthood.
 “We started out wanting 1-2 children, that changed to 2-3, and now we said we would take anywhere from 2-4. We would love a sibling group.  We both desperately want to be parents. We love children, and know they would add so much to our lives. We know that it won't always be easy, that there will be tears, joy, sorrow, pain, and trials, but we know that we will get through them. We are here to love the children unconditionally, give them a forever home, kiss their scrapes, dry their tears, listen to their tantrums, help them through the hard times, and hold them tight. Hopefully someday we will be able to make a foster child/children's dream of a forever family a reality and they will be able to make our dream of having a family come true.”
     Lisa reports that overall, selling on ETSY has been a great experience.  She has made many new connections, met wonderful people, and joined several teams, such as Team Ignored on Etsy, Promotional Frenzy Team, Fun and Friends Promotion Team, and Etsy Promotion Forum to name a few.  Alchemy was a friend to her business by providing custom orders, one that she misses with its discontinuance, but she continues to build her business and look to the future.
I asked Lisa for 5 random facts about herself to share with readers.  Here they are:
1. I love ice water. The colder, the better.
2. I am a chocoholic, and justify eating it by saying there is milk in there so that makes it a dairy product.
3. I was a nanny in California for 3 years and miss San Francisco with all my heart.
4. I love to go fishing with my Dad, but am terrified of the bait and the fish. Crazy ... I know!
5. I love to spend time with my family.
So my wonderful readers, please spread the word, and let's help this would be mom (and dad) raise the money they need to bring children into their welcoming and loving home. 
Slouchy Newsboy Hat - Pick A Color
Slouchy Newsboy Hat
As part of this feature, Lisa is offering 25% off purchases in her store using coupon code YAY25 at checkout.   Please be sure to check the store out today!
Click here for:
Contact Lisa (she is custom work friendly!)

Monday, March 14, 2011

15% off Sale for Facebook Fans

Now until March 31st, I'm offering 15% off purchases over $10 for my Facebook fans.  "Like" my facebook fan page first, and then use coupon code FBFAN15 at checkout for 15% off your order over $10 (prior to shipping).  Easter and Mother's Day are on the way.  Spread the word and get shopping! 

Butterfly and Bluebell Bookmark
Bluebells & Butterfly Bookmark

Beautiful Blue Wire Wrapped Bangle Bracelet
Blue Wire Wrapped Bracelet

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Verstile Blogger Award
I've been given the Versatile Blogger Award by Debbie of Sew Me a Memory Boutique, a fabulous fellow ETSYArtisan and Promotional Frenzy Team member.   Debbie makes the most beautiful clothing for young girls as well as other accessories.  This is my first blog award and it is a great opportunity to pass it along to other deserving bloggers. Thank you so much Debbie!


*Thank the person who awarded you and link back to them in your post.
*Tell 7 Random facts about yourself.
*Pass the award on to 15 new found bloggers.
*Contact each blogger you want to pass the award on to and let them know you've done so, and let the giver of your award know you accept it.

RANDOM Facts About Me
1) I'm totally smitten by 2 loves in my life, my hubby and Bailey, my 8 year old chocolate lab.
2) I'm soon to be smitten by a 3rd love, my first child.
3) My favorite color is green.
4) I'm pretty much a pro bass angler, thanks to my hubby.
5) I sewed 3 of my 4 prom dresses I wore in high school.  Maybe I'll sew again for my little one.
6) I believe that the most important things you can do in life are to:
    a) Love God.
    b) Love your neighbor. 
   These are also the 2 most difficult things in life to truly and fully do.
7) We find a Christmas tree ornament to bring home on every vacation we take.

Below is my list of fabulous blogs that deserve this award!  Please be sure to check them out and their wonderful stores!
1) Belle Skin Care
2) Biji Bijoux
3) Calliope Creations
4) Glitterbird Glamour
5) Grapevine Ceramics & Gifts
6) Hogan's Handiwork
7) Inspired Designs
8) Makenzi & Madilyn
9) Carol's Jewelry Orchard
10) Bounty of Beads
11) Kelly Designs
12) Bags of Blessings
13) Amra Designs
14) Linda B's Beaded Jewelry
15) Prittyfy

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Imagine a Slight Breeze on a Sun Soaked Day!

Imagine a Slight Breeze on a Sun Soaked Day is my newest treasury collection on ETSY.  Check it out for great handmade items for the warmer weather months that are coming our way!   Here's a few peeks:

Small Green Flower Czech Glass Button Ring
Czech Glass Button Ring by Galla15
Ironstone Pitcher with Navy Blue Trim
Ironstone Pitcher by RhettDidntGiveADamn

Shout out Thursday: LITTLE PEEPS

As part of my blog, Thursdays are for a SURPRISE "Shout Out" to another ETSY store for product information and a review, by me. These stores are ones that I have personally done business with and have been impressed with both their product and service. Today, lets chat about:

Therapeutic Eye Pillow Microwavable Hot - Cold Therapy Organic Flaxseed Headache Relief flax seed (Twirly Sue)
Therapeutic Eye Pillow by Little Peeps
LITTLE PEEPS, another unique store on ETSY that I recently had the pleasure of doing business with.  The owner, Beckie, sells beautiful and useful handmade eye pillows, therapeutic heating pads, neck wraps, boo boo packs, mobiles and chandeliers.  She even throws in a few vintage items here and there.  The pillows, wraps and pads come scented or plain and can be used either hot or cold.  They are filled with flax seed, which
"is an herbal flower seed, rather than a food product. This eliminates the 'food' smell you get with other fillers.  When heated, a Flax Seed wrap or pillow retains heat for up to 45 minutes, providing a moist heat & promoting healing." 

On a personal level, Beckie writes regarding herself, "I'm a mom to five kids, all living at home... two teens & three little peeps and a wife to my very hard-working husband. I love fabric, paper, birds and anything vintage. I am a long time fan and consumer of Etsy. I love finding unique, hand-made items, whether for myself or for gifting. I create at home so I can stay at home & be a mom."

I recently purchased from the Little Peeps shop the eye pillow shown above.  The pillow was shipped quickly, the presentation beautiful with the coordinating bow, and the instruction card included informative and much appreciated.  I was very impressed with Beckie's attention to detail and the quality of her work.  Additionally, there was a cute thank you card with a "little peep" attached...I'll leave just what that is to you to discover at your next purchase at the Little Peeps store.  The Little Peeps product line makes for perfect gifts for others and for yourself!  Check it out today!

Click below for:
LITTLE PEEPS Facebook Fan Page

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Advice for this Mom-to-be

Mother Clipart Image: Barefoot and Pregnant Woman
            Today I am exactly 30 weeks pregnant.  This is my first pregnancy, and it has been both an amazing and interesting experience.  There is something about pregnancy that I noticed brings out a type of longing in other women, specifically mothers, not just to touch your belly, but to share stories and bits of advice from their own experiences.  I have heard from so many women how they  “loved being pregnant.”  I’ve been told the many difficult stories people have experienced during their pregnancies, birth and after.   Frequently I hear when I say I am looking forward to actually having my child “just wait” or “enjoy it while you can.”
Well, I don’t love being pregnant.  For me, it is a means to a beautiful ending.   I genuinely enjoy feeling my baby move (I opted to keep the sex a surprise) and find it very reassuring.  I do not enjoy the hip pain and leg cramps I experience at night that wake me or feeling stretched and uncomfortable.  Yet that really has been the worst of it.  The initial fatigue I experienced that I just couldn’t even begin to explain subsided after a few weeks.  I wasn’t overly sick in the beginning although brushing my teeth for some reason induced an unpleasant gag reflux.  My health is good, my fibroids in sufficient check, and I passed the 3 hour gestational diabetes test after an initial high score.  Despite the fair-weather experience, I am really just looking forward to meeting my newborn infant and motherhood as a whole.  I know it will be difficult, I know I am going to be exhausted; I’m okay with that.  At least I will be waking up to care for my baby versus because my hips ache. 
So today I am reaching out to ask for some positive and practical advice from all the moms out there.  Tell me about your joys in the first weeks and months of having your first born.  Share your challenges and how you overcame them.  Help me to embrace my soon to be future with your experiences and words of wisdom, while I wait for my soon-to-be bundle of JOY.  After all, there is a reason we call babies just that!

Monday, March 7, 2011

For the Modern Couple, Classic Black & White Wedding Twists

Mr and Mrs Right
Mr. & Mrs. Right by CNJceramics

Planning a wedding?  Looking for some inspiration?  Check out my newest treasury on ETSY, a collection of great ideas for attire, gifts, favors, accessories, flowers, and more!  With a classic black and white theme, these items each are classy but modern, perfect to add some special detailing to your day.   Here's a few samples of featured items:
Black and White Damask Large Clutch Purse
Black & White Demask Clutch by nangatedesigns 

Friday, March 4, 2011

Spring in the Garden: A Friday ETSY Treasury

Spring in the Garden is my newest treasury collection on ETSY, a great collection of items to browse, purchase and make you dream of warmer weather!  Stop in and check it out!  Here's a few peeks:

Springtime Butterfly Headband by BlushingDoveBoutique

Honey and Clover Necklace by PetiteHermine

Thursday, March 3, 2011

My Best Girl!

I just had to take a minute to share this photo that I snapped of my best girl, Bailey, last night.  She is modeling a hair flower I recently purchased from Pixie Dust and Co., another great ETSY store.  I am modeling it today!  :-)  Thanks Pixie Dust!

Shout out Thursday: Nena Faye

"Little Bit Purse" by nenafaye
As part of my blog, Thursdays are for a SURPRISE "Shout Out" to another ETSY store for product information and a review, by me. These stores are ones that I have personally done business with and have been impressed with both their product and service. Today, lets chat about:

nenafaye, an ETSY shop specializing in handmade "clutches, wallets, coin purses, scarves, bracelets and more!"  I came in contact with this wonderful shop and owner last year when I spotted her "little bit purse" while designing a treasury (a member curated shopping gallery) .  Not only did I include the purse in the treasury, I couldn't help but buy it!  It was the one pictured here with this post.  The "little bit" is her own design and there is a great variety to choose from in the store along with other wonderful bright and beautifully made items.  The owner stands by her work, reporting of her items in her store that "I love creating, and I love a bargain, therefore, you will find items that are unique, well made and yet affordable."

All items are made in a smoke free environment and are guaranteed, barring the post office not cooperating, to be shipped by the next day, if not the same day!  Buyers are also promised a free gift with every purchase. 

Looking for a unique, creative and useful gift?  Check out the nenafaye shop today!

Click below:


Wednesday, March 2, 2011


Announcing my first blog GIVEAWAY!  One lucky reader will win the 2 pairs of earrings pictured!  I created these earrings with every day in mind, wether it be dressed up or down.  Both earrings are sterling silver with hand made earwires.  The black pair consist of black mother-or-pearl beads with faceted black crystals and Swarovski spacer beads.  The 2nd pair consist of clear faceted quartz crystal with a wirework design.  Giveaway begins today and entries will be accepted until 9 p.m. EST on March 21, 2011.  Comments will be assigned numbers, the winning number will be selected using and will be announced here on March 23, 2011.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Stay tuned...FREE GIVEAWAY details and rules to come...

So the poll is in, the results though close have made the public's wishes known.  The March Giveaway will be.....drum rolls here.....


Check back tomorrow for the GIVEAWAY details and ways to enter!