Saturday, January 30, 2010

I LOVE Ninjas!!

from Lilley on Etsy :

ninja shirt from namu on etsy :

Fat Ninja Valentines from interrupt on etsy:

from Mama Runs with Scissors on Etsy:

from beta on etsy:

from evie hearts milo on etsy:

from jilly billy bean on etsy:

and a CROCHET PATTERN (super cute) from lafeecrochette on etsy:

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Giveaway FEB 10th: Free Water Bottle Carrier in Sour Apple

just comment on this post

and I will enter you into a drawing for a
Free Water Bottle Carrier (in Sour Apple Colorway, as shown).

Tweet or Facebook
a link to the giveaway
and I will double your entry

(please comment to say you did so for tracking purposes).

Thanks !

Drawing will take place Feb 10th and I will ship worldwide for free too!

My first pair of Baby Sandals!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Vegan Baked Goods from SweetVConfections

Our family has been vegetarian for almost 15 years and for more than half those years we were vegan. Recently we also transitioned to only fruit juice and agave sweetened goods, but everyone needs a treat now and then. I am always looking for all natural alternatives for gifts for other people or treats for the kids.

These goodies from SweetVConfections look way too yummy not to link to:

Saturday, January 23, 2010

A Treasury Thanks :)

Thanks so much to for including me in her beautiful treasury .....

Our Rescue Dog: Is It Separation Anxiety of Just Getting to Know Us / Previous Trauma?

Last weekend we adopted a rescued Clumber Spaniel mix. He is in many ways the perfect dog for us. He is calm and relaxed when we are at home. He doesn't chew on stuff or beg for food. I can leave my crafting supplies around and he never goes near them. He sleeps well at night in a crate (best solution for us and really like a den). He is great with children and strangers (a must with us really).

But, man oh man, does he hate when we leave the house. Thing is, we are home most of the time. We really only leave for church a few nights per month and can arrange gym trips and classes to have him with us. We homeschool and we host many events here in our home. I don't mean he sort of hates when we leave. My husband left for a marathon last weekend and he almost tored through the window. He has bloodied himself being left for two hours. He has broken through a metal crate and clawed at the door and carpet until we came home.

We love him already. We want to keep him. Crate training is necessary at least when we leave the house for no more than 4 hours or so and only a few times per week max. Tomorrow my husband is staying behind from church to help the dog recover from his terrified escapade, but that is not a long term solution. We are reading up on separation anxiety, hoping for tips and some success from others. It really is a downer to read that dogs are euthanized for such behaviors.

We knew a rescue dog would be a challenge. An older dog like he is might have established some unhealthy behaviors. We knew it would be a process. We aren't even totally comfortable with the confining him part but we definitely want to invest in him properly and we want him safe.

I would love comments with great stories especially. I need some encouragement. This is an emotional process.

Here is Buckeye, our beautiful dog:

Friday, January 22, 2010

Homemade and Creative Gift Ideas for 7-10 year olds

It used to be super easy to decide on gifts when we went to birthday parties. When the middle of our four sons was a toddler or a preschooler we could come up with lots of items that I made: playfoods, homemade play dough, or books we loved. It seems like it is getting more difficult lately. What do you make for a boy turning 7? What can I purchase that will make an 11 year old excited?

Now, I will be the first to admit that my children are rather eclectic and their tastes are much different than many of their peers, but I have found some successful ways to satisfy my desire to buy artisan-made products and also bring smiles to the older children.

These are some ideas and some cool stores I have found that carry products like them.

Handbound Journals and Sketchbooks:

from missindie at etsy:

Decorated Clipboards:
from joosycardco at etsy

Quality Pottery with a Fun Theme:

from KarinLorenc at etsy

A Keepsake Box that would make any tween smile:

from lostmitten at etsy

Custom Stickers:

from chickabug at etsy

Playsilks (for the super hero in every kid):

from BeneathTheRowanTree at Etsy and Hyenacart

a boo boo ninja:

from crankypantsknits at etsy

a doll for the older boy:

from HillCountry Dollmaker at Etsy and Hyenacart

from isgood on etsy

super fun undies:

from MadalineJane at etsy and hyenacart

Branching Out

Four active boys with me all the time. Virtual Schooling and Dog Training. Stocking my Etsy Store and Hyenacart. Twittering and Facebooking. Joining Teams and Checking Google Analytics. Posting to Forums and Admiring Hearts. Crafting and Journaling. Studying and Keeping up with Friends. Housecleaning and Church Activities. Blogging and Flickring. Training to be the last to the finish for the third year running at the Whisky Row Half Marathon. Sometimes I feel worn out before noon.

But, I would never trade this life.

And I make conscious choices every single day to not only seek out replenishing positive influences, but to BE a positive replenishing influence in the lives of others.

I often struggle with anxiety. I want to be a better listener. I want to offer forgiveness faster and with more enthusiasm. And I want to be honoring to those around me. All of this takes work. Real labor. Not unlike my pitocin-induced hospital birth or my homebirths.

And all of this demands rest. So, when the body can't rest I try to rest in other ways. I try to challenge myself and invest in only the important things and take some time to enjoy my craft.

Thanks to April of for featuring my Wool Tea Set on her blog about handmade toys. Check it out for other great items.