signs of fall...

there are many signs of fall around here this week... and not just the rainy cool weather, or the few red leaves peeking out here and there. my youngest started preschool today! such a big day around here for all of us. she did wonderful and had a great day. i think it was harder on my son and i who were staying home! lot's of boo hooing going on:) i did manage to do a little work though, and listed the first of two pumpkins. i will have a limited run for fall, as i did last year. i have some new designs for 2009. the leaves are a little different and i have added embroidery. i will have some orange pumpkins to add soon as well.

i wanted to share another fun crafty project i worked on last night. i made some really cute snack pouches for my daughter to use in her lunch. the school she is going to is very environmentally friendly and discourage plastic, and plastic bags. we never used them for my son either... we had little metals tins, and wax bags instead. though better for the environment, the wax bags are disposable, so i thought i'd try something different. i found this pattern online and tried it out. i made two bags last night and found it to be very easy (i am not much of a machine sewer)! they washed really well today too when i tested them out. they went into her lunch basket this morning with a few tins, and a cloth napkin on top to cover it and use while eating. adorable, and good for the environment.

want another chance?...

if you were really hoping to win my handmade charlotte giveway and were left broken hearted... here is another chance! katy at winsome hollow is giving away a skirt (this time for babies) and one of her own beautiful nest with eggs along with it. how great is that?! go here to enter... good luck!

in other news, i should be ready for another shop update tomorrow! i will start putting some pumpkins in the shop. are you in the mood for fall? it is in the 60's and raining here today... and suddenly i am so excited for fall to come! i have some new ideas for a fall series, that will also include some favorites from last year. i have a couple new animals for my wild life series also in the works. right now i am working on a wee peacock! i will share that soon.

east west...

just wanted to mention my lion was included in a post about embroidery here. that japanese embroidery book looks really interesting too!

bright color for a rainy day...

i used to make these cute little fairies for craft shows, when we were doing them as fundraisers for my son's preschool. they were always such a big hit! kids and adults alike love them. they are a fun project because they can be as simple or as complicated as you like. it was a rainy day today, so we pulled out the flower petals (found at dollar stores), pipe cleaners, and wooden beads. they pick everything out and help assemble as much as they are able. my son drew all the faces. i glued it all together with the glue gun. all set for a little rainy day play. maybe if it clears up tomorrow we will venture out to make fairy houses for them!

now to clean up the mess....

we have a winner!...

our winner of the handmade charlotte dress and pumpkin give away is marian! congratulations! i will be in touch to get your address and they will be on their way!

also, as you can see from the side over there ------>, my shop is now open again! horray! i'm actually so excited to get back to work. i'm working on some new animals, and i will post some work-in-progress pictures. i will make some pumpkins and leaves as well. anything elese you are interested in? let me know!

sharing the etsy love...

just wanted to let you know that nicole licht of astulabee is having a sale right now in her etsy shop!! everything is 15% off. i am particularly enamored with her woodlanders... but she makes beautiful soft sculptures and other art! go support this wonderful artist!

in other etsy news, my sister katy, winsome hollow, has begun adding new pieces to her etsy shop. this beautiful wall hanging is one of her latest creations. it is even more lovely in person. i am really tempted to grab it for myself. really impressive work!

finally, i'm working on opening my shop this afternoon. i hope you will come "visit" and help spread the word. i'm going to be working on a lot of new pieces, and i always appreciate your support.


lions, and tigers, and elephants (oh my!)...

yes, i promised my shop would re-open yesterday... obviously that didn't happen! i apologize. house guests sort of took over my days. i have photographed the three finished pieces in my new series "wild life". i have started working on a few new pieces also, that i will share soon. these new creatures will be prowling the shop tomorrow!

i will announce the winner to the dress give away then also. at least that is something to look forward to!

it's not room and board...

but it was free! much better than the $2000 price tag at room and board! we got this off freecycle this weekend. it's from 1955 and in pretty good shape for it's age. we will clean it up a bit and put on some new legs (the originals went missing somewhere in the last 50 years). the cushions need a little work, but otherwise it's pretty cool! we put it in the upstairs office and now we actually have somewhere to watch movies other than an office chair and some bean bags!

i'm finishing up a few touches on some new animals and will start putting them in the shop either tonight or tomorrow. it will be a few at first but i hope to slowly add as i continue to make them.

** last chance to enter to win the free dress from handmade charlotte! please enter by midnight tonight (e.s.t). i will do the drawing tomorrow!

saturday shopping list...

this weeks etsy shopping list is inspired by the idea of unique baby shower gifts. new moms often get so many of the same types of things... most often what is practical (or a million cute outfits they outgrow too quickly). it is also nice to receive unique surprises. here are some interesting ideas for special, handmade (by someone else or yourself) and vintage gifts that are truly one of a kind!

1) put your shoes on, baby, from clutterjunkie
2) orange petal flying cap, by handmadecharlotte**
3) hey, diddle diddle vintage baby nursery lamp light, from inwiththeold
4) zaza hammock, made by robynas (shop currently on break until the 1st)
5) patterns, baby gifts, from leahsutton
6) bluebird mobile, made by willowbaus

** enter to win your own special gift from handmade charlotte here!!

a little more time...

i've decided to add a little more time to the giveaway... so you now have until monday, the 24th to enter. remember all you have to do is leave me a comment below, or here. this dress is truly sweet and even if you don't have a little one who will fit it, it would make a lovely gift for someone who would.

if you choose to blog about the giveaway you will get an extra entry, just let me know about it. don't forget the little wool pumpkin of mine that comes along with it... just in time for fall!

inspiration wednesday....

1. Frog Finally!, 2. white+COLOR!, 3. californian cherries, 4. sweeteners, 5. Untitled, 6. Jarro amapolas, 7. The most telling question of a person's life is the relationship that person has with the infinite., 8. still life, 9. evening sun, 10. Jenn Ski designed Alphabet Corner, 11. .....tah - daaah!, 12. Absolute joy!!!, 13. Bowl of scented spheres, 14. Favorite 'new' jug, 15. Oregano en mi cocina, 16. Summer on the Back Porch, 17. Summer Bounty, 18. egg and the giver, 19. garden 2, 20. The light was so beautiful right now, 21. Mama made bonnet, 22. bench monday - trike edition, 23. small harvest, 24. 229/365: Steamed Beef/Pork and Vegetable Baozi, 25. SIMPLY LIGHT...., 26. Invitation, 27. Beautiful!, 28. wip stitching, 29. Untitled, 30. busy with miss ethel..., 31. plush you 2009, 32. Pink Loves Brown, 33. bloom, 34. Charlie the Owl, 35. sometimes, 36. happy desk thursday... :)

i went a little crazy with photos today! i spent a fun morning browsing flickr and found a lot of new favorites! it's funny how you will be drawn to a photograph and then realize that you have so much in common with the person who took it.

in other news, i really need to get my self in gear. i've decided to open my shop again next week. this will force me to get to work (i hope!). more news coming soon...

** don't forget to enter the giveaway!!!!


i was busy last week doing some rearranging in the house. i've been trying to make it as kid friendly as possible. we had intended to make the middle room a family room, but i've found that the children don't really like to play in their rooms by themselves. they prefer to be close to me. so i set up the middle room as a playroom, moving many of their toys, their kitchen, table, etc. in there. i moved our (only right now) couch into the big front room which wasn't being used yet. it's lovely under the large front windows, looking at the fireplace.

the kids spent all afternoon playing in their new playroom (and the living room) after i set it up, and have played there everyday since. it's really wonderful, and has been a very nice change. the house is really starting to feel like a home now. i've been trying out a few different paint colors. i'm hoping for a nice blue for the front room, and lighter colors for the playroom and white for the kitchen. then i will be able to hang up pictures and prints!

the playroom "music station". we don't own a television, so i'm trying to encourage other diversions (they do watch things on the computer. i love movies and could never do without those. they love them too... and scooby-doo as well!). they really love to listen to books on the i-pod here also.

kitchen area. still all much of a work in progress, but every time i rearrange, or add and take away from it, they are interested in it all the more.

today we are heading off to the garden center to look for some marigolds. i read they are good for planting around your vegetable garden to ward off bugs. we saw some in a neighbors garden down the street too. we have some fall sprouts, but the dirt still has a long way to go to be made healthier, so we will see what we get. this is all new to us, so it's a fun learning experience.

don't forget to enter the dress giveaway below! tell your friends!

handmade giveaway...

handmade charlotte has generously given this dress for a new giveaway on my blog! not only is rachel, of handmade charlotte, an awesome person (and mom to five children!) but she make truly darling, high quality clothes. the contest is for the dress shown above, modeled by my daughter sidney. sidney is almost 4, and it is a little small for her (unfortunately!). she is very large for her age, though, and already wears a five. i would say then that the dress would be perfect for age 3 or younger (or a small 4 year old). it would be great to grow into. it would look very cute with tights or over pants for fall. it would also make a lovely gift!

so, here's how the giveaway will work. leave me a comment letting me know you are interested in winning the dress. if you would like to blog about the giveway, or about handmade charlotte you will get an extra entry. simply link back to this post or handmade charlotte's etsy shop and give me the link to your post in the comments***. the winner will also get a little gift from me:

good luck!!

*** sorry i didn't include an end date! please post by monday the 24th (extended date)!! winner will be chosen by a random generator... thanks!

*** contest now closed. congrats to marian!

yesterday, today, and tomorrow...

i guess my post yesterday was a little "random and scattered"... my husband's words but they describe me well! since we have moved everything has been completely new and strange... and yet, for the most part my everyday life feels the same. i love my kids but the job of staying at home with them (and especially the house work part) can get a bit mundane. i was really trying to speak to that, and how little surprises in my routine are a welcome change. i need those things, and tend to forget how important they are to my sanity.

so, no i'm not pregnant:) i'm sorry if i was confusing to anybody. but thanks for keeping tabs on me! i'm happy with the little bundle of joys i have already... and so completely and totally worn out by them, i can't even imagine having any more of these little crazy people running my life! er, running around in my life is what i meant to say...


inspiration wednesday....

1. a corner, 2. Bedroom, 3. wood bird coasters, 4. Flying away, 5. blueberry muffins, 6. Jake, 7. Untitled, 8. three, 9. speckled egg, 10. the barber shop quartet, 11. More deep thoughts from JunkerJane, 12. Metal Tray with Litho Flowers, 13. horse10, 14. St Malo, 15. h b m, 16. Apples, 17. 005, 18. noche, 19. inspired by ahmed nadalian, 20. original

sorry i have abandoned you lately, my lovely flickr friends!

yesterday was a surprising day, and i'm wondering what direction life will take me soon? maybe things will continue as expected or maybe they will go in a completely new direction? are you a big planner, or do you tend to take things as they come? i sometimes wish i was better at planning out my life (or at least my husband was a better planner). there are a lot of consequences for not palnning ahead... but also a lot of rewards for just taking chances. am i being vague enough?! it's not any major news to tell, i just like it when what seems like an ordinary day suddenly suprises you. hope your day is inspiring!


here is a little preview of the "back-to-school" (or "not" back-to-school, as the case may be) giveaway that i'm starting in the next few days. this darling dress was made by rachel faucett of handmade charlotte! i love the sweet old fashioned look of it. i'll have more details and pictures in a few days! i also might throw in a little something of my own as well:)


i had so many intentions this summer... but summer seems to always get in the way:) our summer is not yet over but i am starting to feel the need to get back in touch with this world a little bit. it will be a challenge for me to find the right balance. this fall my daughter starts preschool a few mornings a week, but i have decided to home school my son... well, unschool to be precise. this is an entirely new experience for us. it will be a learning experience for both of us, and i'm excited to see where it leads. i plan on sharing this here. i will also share my attempt to balance this with my own work. i'm not sure how this will go, but i'm actually looking forward to it. my son and i alone tend to fall into an easy balance. i think it will be good for my daughter to have the social experience of preschool (in a very non academic environment). i have found both my children needed this (and i need it!) at this age. their little busy minds and hands need more than i can give. i realize this isn't true for everyone but it is for us. i'm also not sure that i can see myself homeschooling forever... but you really never know where life will take you. i could never have imagined the life i have now, but i like that! it's not perfect but it is a work in progress and i'm learning to take each day as it comes and not worry so much about how "perfect" i am doing or what others may think of it. not easy for me! i tend to be a worrier.

looking forward to being around here more and i hope you haven't given up on me!

xo cary

***ps.... i have a really cool giveaway here on the blog, coming soon, courtesy of my friend rachel at handmade charlotte!