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Saturday, December 27, 2008

The long overdue blog post

Where to even begin! It's been quite a busy crazy month! Our Etsy sales were phenomenal and kept us so busy we barely had time to rest. And then the weather decided to make things more tricky. We rarely get snow that lasts more than a day here but this was a big one. And the temperatures stayed cold and icy for over a week. This made our trips to the post office dependant on our awesome and wonderful neighbors Chris and Shelley and their studded tires. On Tuesday December 16th Nick mailed 61 packages at our little Philomath post office! About 10 to the midwest were delayed causing much stress. About 3 have still not arrived.
Our sales at the Eugene Holiday Market were down quite a bit which made us even more grateful for our wonderful Etsy customers.I had to skip selling on Sunday the 15th because the roads were too icy in the morning and they called for more snow that day (which didn't actually arrive until the night which was irritating!) We packed the whole thing up two days early . I'm a wimp when it comes to driving on ice and snow.


Brrrrr.Nick's face says it all.



Henry had a little fun but Max wanted nothing to do with it. "It's too cold", he said. I'm not much of a snow fan myself. It's nice to look at through the window but I don't need to touch it.

And then there was Christmas.After working so much we spoiled our little guys with lots of material things.

Henry got lots of new Geotrax and insisted on taking a picture to send to their website.

Max is a big Spiderman fan and he really enjoyed his new Doc Oc figure. He went to sleep with it last night.
Things have slowed down a little here but I'm amazed that people are still buying our stuff on Etsy. I'm NOT complaining. We feel very lucky and blessed.
Happy New Year!


Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Broken Pliers Update

Just wanted to share that today we received a brand new replacement pair of swanstom micro chain nose pliers from Rio Grande.
We appreciate the excellent customer service!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

My Little Nerds




The game gets tense.




A pooped Batman takes a break.


Life has been very hectic here as our Etsy sales have started really picking up. iIguess people are Christmas shopping. Then yesterday we had the pleasure of being mentioned in Anne Hansons' Knitting Patterns Knitspot blog thanks to Deb of FearlessFibers who sent her our Celtic Budding Spirals Aluminum Shawl Pin. We've been getting tons of orders from her lovely readers who came and visited our Etsy store and have been buying lots of shawl pins and jewelry.
This weekend we start the Holiday Market in Eugene. I had planned to have lots of stock but alas, I have the bare minimum. At least the cold and cough from hell is slowly abating.
Back to work!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

You know you've been working a lot when....


you break your top of the line, $30 something Swanstrom pliers!My favorite ones too!


yep, the other part is in there.


I called Rio Grande (the company I bought them from) and they said to send them to their Returns Dept. and they'll see if they meet their warranty replacement criteria.
I was just using them on my 9 gauge aluminum wire when, SNAP, they broke. Luckily I have another similar pair but the handle is longer so I don't like them as much and the tip is narrower which makes me worry they will break soon too.
We've been getting lots of orders which is great but both Nick and I are stricken with a nasty cold that has sapped us of energy and filled us with gooey phlegm and aches. My voice is now going too. I just hope we get over it before next weekend when Holiday Market starts.All my plans of making lots of stock before the market seems to be slipping away. Luckily the kids don't have it (yet- knock on every piece of wood and good juju superstition that might save them and us from this virus.)

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Hammering away



Work, work, work

I finally got my big wholesale order finished and delivered. Yay!Now I'm going to try and focus on building up stock and replacing the stock I took from our Saturday Market inventory to fill the order. The Holiday Market will be starting soon and I'm not ready yet.Etsy sales are up and down. The day after the election it was dead but today was very busy.Hopefully our low prices will keep people shopping with us during this tricky economic holiday season.

Henry has recovered from his 24 hour stomach flu on Monday and is now back to his usual boisterous self.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

Happy Day After Halloween!


Yesterday was quite the busy day.I took Max to Henry's kindergarten class for their Halloween Party. Here is my little sailor and batman having a hug -sort of.

Henry after much deliberation decided to be a sailor. The costume fell into place perfectly. Grandfather Nick had sent us his Brooks Brothers sailor shirt from when he was a little boy. It fit perfectly. I picked up a real sailor hat from the Army/Navy Surplus store.

Max methodically decorated his pumpkin cookie with candycorn and "M-m-M"'s

Happy sailor boy.We wanted him to carry a can of Spinach and be Popeye but he would have none of it.

Enjoying the cookies.


At the board doing some learnin'.

Lisa the teacher's assistant looked great!
Ms. Kampfer aka Hannah Montana read to the well behaved class.
It was a lot of fun and it was great for Max to be part of the class too for the day.
Nick will be blogging later with the evening trick o treat festivites.
We are all now sticky and covered in candy. We have chosen the eat it all now and get it over with parenting technique.Henry tends to take it slow and hoard his candy. Max eats it all up. They were giving out candy at the Post Office and they told him he could take more. I said- "Oh he has plenty. He has candy issues".
Max said- "I don't have candy shoes!"







Monday, October 27, 2008

New things!

We've had some great ideas from our customers lately. Yay customers!
I had a potential customer ask if I could make a shawl pin using my Celtic Knot Infinite Swirl Cross Ornament design. It was a great idea and this is what I came up with.
She liked it and bought it and it is now a regular item in our Etsy shop. We already sold one to someone else too!
Mimi and Moe's Mom aka Karen asked us to make "Infinity Symbol " Earrings. Another great idea and we already sold a pair to someone else too!Thanks Karen!

This another sort of new design. I reworked my Fancy Loop Hoop Earrings to give it a teardrop shape. This is called:




I really liked my Fancy Loop Hoop Earrings ...
but realized that I prefer a longer teardrop type shape for my own particular face shape.
That's all the new stuff this week.
Busy ,busy ,busy...

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Muddy Creek Corn Maze


Last Sunday we went to our local Muddy Creek Corn Maze. Since we went last year also I guess it is now an annual tradition.

The kids had fun in the corn pit. Henry gave Aidan a nice corn shower.
Aidan returned the favor.

Max led the way with kettle corn on hand.


Soon the energy level died down a bit and Ryan pushed 3 lazy boys in the deluxe stroller.

Nick's shadow...


Three boys on a hayride.( Henry actually was happy despite the odd picture.)

Max surprised and kind of disgusted us by eating this raw corn he took from the maze. he is actually the pickiest eater and hardly eats anything but he really got into this old nasty corn.
good times....








Friday, October 17, 2008

Jillian's perfect Halloween Birthday Bash for Ethan

Last Sunday my good friend Jillian gave a lovely Halloween style 6th birthday party for her son Ethan who is one of Henry's best friends.She put Martha Stewart to shame.She bought some non latex plastic gloves from a deli and put candy corn at the fingertips and then filled them with popcorn. The creepy hands are spread in front of the tray of peanut butter bloodshot eyeballs.


She made yummy mummy shaped calzones that had a red bloody sauce to drizzle on top.


Lovely pumpkin cookies .

The birthday cake was a moist ,rich chocolate cake with ganache filling and a praline frosting.
Amazing.

The dudes assumed the position on the couch while the cutest superman ever (Max) entertains us. Check out his cowboy rubber boots and his extra utility belt.We've been getting a lot of use out of this Batman costume since the day we got it.
Henry the farmer engages in some M-n-M grazing. This is the same costume he chose last year. Simple and understated. He's not really one of those dress-up superhero type kids.He'll just do whatever it takes to get some candy.

The highlight of the party was when Ethan's baby sister Olivia surprised us with taking her first real long steps. I happened to have my camera on at the time and was able to catch the little pumpkin walking across the room for the first time:

video
I've decided to blow off the Saturday Market tomorrow. Last weekend we had perfect weather and a late starting hometown football game and sales were still disappointing. Luckily we got an unexpected wholesale order so I have the perfect excuse to not go tomorrow.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Pumpkins and new fun hair stuff

We went with Henry's kindergarten class last week to the Pumpkin Patch. It was a lot of fun and the boys were the only ones to choose the white moon pumpkins for their own amongst all the other orange ones (which were also quite impressive.)

Max insisted on showing me his "scary" face when I took the pictures.
The final product....the one on left has hearts for ears that you can't see in the picture.

I did some work on some new fun hair adornments. This one also works well as a shawl pin.

I had two different customers ask for custom single hair sticks so once again the light bulb went off above my head and I realized I should make them a regular item and put them in our Etsy shop.

Friday, October 03, 2008

Fight Club

Last night we all went out to the Philomath Youth Activities Club fundraiser. They had lots of inflatable bouncey rooms and slides and games to soak up lots of kid energy. Perhaps the most amusing was the giant boxing gloves bounce set up.

The helmets are on.


The boys take to their corners...


The fight begins. Max comes out of his corner determined to bring down his big brother.


And he's down. He got up again and again and got Henry down a bunch too. You'd think 2 hours of this stuff would tire these boys out but noooooo. They were still up too late again.
And here's a little video of some of the action:

video

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Fall Inspiration

I found myself picking some of our grapes and it suddenly occured to me that they would be the perfect backdrop for our hanging vases. The weather was perfectly overcast and towards the end of the day. The Wide Flast Hanging Vase with Purple Accents
seemed ripe for pickin' hanging next to those clumps of grapes.


The haybales "spoke" to me too.


Heart Shaped Hanging Vase with Blue Accents