Saturday, January 16, 2010

Growing every minute

The only other time in my life when I felt as simultaneously exhausted and energized and empowered as I do now was during the births of my two children. I am in awe of what we have been able to accomplish in such a short time. So, so many kind and loving people from all over the world have been in touch in the past few days, to help, to encourage, to donate, to buy, to share their tales of sadness and triumph. The spirit of community has been overwhelming, yet we're all in different corners of the world. The fact that we're all able to come together and make such an huge difference with our craft or trade, or support the effort with our love of handmade, fills me with immense hope.

The shop is live and filling with more and more beautiful things by the minute. Please consider giving a piece of your heart for Haiti, too. All proceeds, less Etsy and PayPal fees, go directly to the relief efforts of Doctors Without Borders in Haiti.

Grab the button and spread the word!

♥♥♥ thank you! ♥♥♥

Friday, January 15, 2010

Hearts for Haiti

I don't know how it happened. On Wednesday night, so completely saddened and defeated by the tragic earthquake in Haiti, I was trawling the internet and reading horrific accounts of the devastation. Having no money to donate I was feeling helpless and desperate to do my part. Somehow I ended up on the Etsy forums and it struck me that a charitable shop should be organized to help the people of Haiti in some way.

So I started a forum thread. The response was immediate and incredibly inspiring. So many amazing people stepped up to help in all of the many ways that were needed. Throngs of Etsy sellers offered up amazing items. I got swept up in all of the camaraderie and the amazing spirit of charity and before I knew it I was well on my way to opening a shop!

We are so close to being fully operational. I got the go-ahead from Doctors Without Borders and all of our proceeds (less Etsy and PayPal fees) will be going to their amazing work in Haiti. Two awesome artists are developing a banner and avatar. A blog is in the works. I've set up a dedicated PayPal and credit union account. We're just finalizing the details now and I really hope to be open for business sometime tomorrow.

Amazing! Without even one doubt I just forged ahead and I am overwhelmed by what has been accomplished.

Please visit the shop and consider buying something for yourself or a loved one and open your hearts for Haiti.

If you are an Etsy seller who wants to donate an item please send an email to and I will send you the Donations Information and Guidelines as soon as we have them sorted out.

♥thank you!♥

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Change and chance

I have always disliked New Year's Eve. I just can't take the pressure of expectation, the full, round hope that it will be the best night of the year, that great things will happen, that all of the promise and potential of the coming year will be foretold on that night. In my experience this has led to nothing but disappointment and usually a bad hangover.

Of course, this was all much more acute when I was younger. I know now that it's all a bunch of hype and even if I didn't have kids as my excuse to stay home I would gladly curl up on the couch with a book or a movie, all too happy go to bed before the magic hour (which I rarely do on regular days). I know now that this night is more about putting the past year to rest and waking up refreshed and inspired (instead of exhausted and sick), ready to face a new year.

Some years I take it as a challenge, others I accept it as a welcome reprieve from a difficult time that has passed. But always the coming of a new year reminds me of the inevitability of change, and the chances that come with it. I'm reminded that it's up to me to use those chances to improve my life.
"Mom" by Tigerlily

In this new year I've been taking some time to really hone in on the changes I want to see in my life. To be healthier, happier. To do better in my roles as mother, partner, friend. To grow creatively and to make my business truly sustainable. To share more of myself, my knowledge, skills and ideas. To remember my love for writing and cultivate it.

My plan is to really begin to use this blog as an avenue for these goals. I'm not exactly sure what that means just yet but at the very least I want to make this space more valuable to others and will be working on incorporating tutorials and other types of skillsharing. I want to see where I can go with it.
will 2010 be the year of the scissors tattoo?

I hope you'll come along for the ride.

Monday, January 11, 2010

backlog: the finale, part 2

It's almost over!

1. A nearly 100% organic book for a little boy named Pedro, 1/2 in English, 1/2 in Spanish.

2. to 5. A set of literary-inspired books for a very literary-minded customer (Warning! Terrible nighttime pictures with flash).

"book" in 7 different languages

dictionary book

An homage to miniature books, 4" x 4"

An homage to the different forms of poetry

6. Many, many coffee cup cozies were made, some for sale, some for giving (and one for me!).

7. A sewing kit for my little girl.

she loved it!

8. Little purses, just for fun.

9. & 10. Monogrammed letter cases, complete with a set of monogrammed cards, envelopes and a pen. One for my cousin, one for my niece (with matching bags for wrapping).

:That's all, folks! I survived, but barely ;) I'll have a few more things to show you by the end of the week.

In the meantime, I am planning on creating some tutorials to post here over the coming year and would love to hear from you about what you'd like to see. Is there something you'd like to hear more about? I really want to make an effort to share more through my blog this year and welcome any and all suggestions.

Have a great week!

Friday, January 8, 2010

backlog: the finale, part 1

Will this backlog thing ever end? Probably not if I don't pick up the pace. I have 13 more (!) books to show you that I made in the past couple of months, plus a bunch of other gifts and such, and in the interest of getting on with things I'll be cramming them all into two more posts. I have big plans for this here blog in 2010 and I'm raring to go. So, let's get 'er done!

Here it is, part 1 of the giant backlog custom work finale!

1. A book of famous people for a little girl named Riley. Finally, Ex Libris Handmade does The Ramones!!

2. A 10-page with 2-page spreads for each letter for a little girl named Pilar.

3 & 4. Two bright and fun books for cousins, Maddux and Kyle.

5. A Favorite Things book for a little boy named Maddox.

6. A rock & roll book for a little boy named Graham.

7. An animals book for a little boy named Calvin.
...dude, that's a lot of books. And more to come!