Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Some New Finds

We hit a really great estate sale last weekend. I picked up these cute playing cards from some garage sales. They will make great ATC's.
And I found this vintage laundry basket. I love these and I've been wanting one for a long time. Whenever I see them they are usually not for sale or way out of my price range. This is a smaller one, but I still love it. It will be great to put some linens in. It will also come in handy as a display piece for craft fairs.
I found this great red box oozing with pretty trims, ribbon, and rick rack.

Monday, August 17, 2009

A Good Week

This has been the summer of camping- quick, fun trips. This time, with a new group of friends. We found another gorgeous spot- Farragut State Park in Idaho.

~We stopped by our new place. (We're moving- details to come)

~Amy is coming tomorrow. I'm so excited for talking, crafting, thrifting, hiking and watching Julie and Julia.
~ I've been working on some projects I'm excited to share.

This week will be so fun, can't wait!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

5 Things that Inspire Me

I loved hearing what inspires everyone. I thought I'd share the things that I am really loving right now.

1) This etsy shop. All of the hand carved rubber stamps are so cool. I love the little camper of course, all of the tree stamps, and that cute parasol. Don't you agree, super cute?

2) This version of this song: He Knows My Name. I found it on our ipod, I think the singer is a guy Sam played with at a coffee shop in MN a couple years ago. I think you can listen and download the song for free.

3) Going on walks in the woods. I love being outside. I think it's the best source of inspiration for making things. I'm a weird little collector, always have been. Does anyone else bring pockets full of treasures back from walks? I love the little turtle shell we found camping. And here is just a silly little thing I made playing around with masking fluid and gel medium last night.
4) Happy mail! Maddie sent me this great book Change the World for 10 Bucks. It's so sweet when people send gifts for no good reason!
The graphics are so cool. I love the way this book was put together.
5) Sam and his book list. We love books. Sam carries around a tiny little list with him and has all the ones he already owns checked off. Our goal is to read all 100 of the best novels of the 20th century. I like owning some classics, this is a good list to go off of. (If nothing else people- it just makes you feel smart to own a few of these books- ha ha!) I just need to be better about pulling them off the shelf and reading them! I love our bookshelf. A close friend made it as a wedding gift for us.

**And I got my camera professionally cleaned. It's working much better now. Before, I had a few dirty spots I had to edit and clear up on each picture. Now they're crisp and clean! It was worth the splurge.

Have a good good weekend everyone! The weather has been crazy here, last week was killer hot- we were all gonna die, now it's feeling like fall. I like it- a new season. Fall is my favorite!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Liberty Lake Walk

TJ, Sam, and I went on the Liberty Lake loop. It was a good hike. Only in America will you find signs pointing the obvious, I love it- it's so funny. There was a sign that said- waterfall- and another one that said- more hiking. After the hike we went out and enjoyed some food and beer.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Spilling My Guts

I was so touched by hearing so many of you share your stories- your authentic words about your life and why you blog. What I shared before was true- it's just that I've been holding back on sharing a big part of what is going on in my life. So here goes- confession time!

The simple question what do you do (for a living) is not one I like to answer. I apologetically explain to people my meager attempts at trying to sell stuff online.

I realize I'm guilty of not practicing what I preach. I am a firm believer in chasing after dreams and I always try to encourage people to go for crazy things.

Right now what I'm doing isn't traditional. It isn't normal- it's not easy to relate to.

I need to go back a little to explain- My husband Sam and I have gone off and done some interesting things in the 4 years we've been married. Our previous job was running a 10 bedroom lodge. We learned a lot about life then. We realized we loved working together. (Yes- we're one of those obnoxiously pukey couples who would love to spend every minute together) We share so many of the same interests, and we learned that our differences in personality complements eachother. We also learned through that job that we can live off of a small amount of money. I guess I realized I hate the idea that our selfworth is determined by how productive we are. Everyone always wants to know if x,y, and z is done by the end of the day. And it seems life is a competition- the one with the most points wins. I just really hate that mentality. I don't think it's good to sit around- I'm all about working hard and productivity, but I think there is more to life than making money and spending it. I also think that there are more ways to make a living than a 9-5 job. I have nothing against people who love working that kind of job, it just isn't me at all.

So Sam is so so sweet and supportive. He is working for his dad right now. He works very hard and we are able to live just fine off of that one income. I love cooking, I love making things, and I want to help people. These are some of the things I want to do with my time. I don't care about making gobs of money to have cool stuff. (But don't get me wrong- I love pretty things!- this is where the thrifting addiction comes into play)

As of now I am trying to find my niche in making stuff. I really think this is what I'm meant to do but I'm really struggling with figuring out how to work from home and figure out a schedule. I have trouble putting myself out there and being confident in what I make. I am trying to pin down a style and look to what I make and it's not easy. I love so many different mediums, I feel like I need to pick one.

I have been taught a huge lesson in all of this. My self worth isn't determined by how productive I am, what everyone else thinks of me, how much money I make, how cool my job is. I am not successful right now. People don't know how to react when I tell them what I do. It's also largely my fault because I don't take myself seriously. I say, "I uh sorta am kinda trying to sell stuff online..." (Yeah, how should someone react to that?)

I learned that God loves me for who I am. If I can't walk tomorrow and can never work another day in my life, it doesn't matter. If I am failing miserably getting it together with my professional life, it doesn't matter. I still think I need to figure it out myself, but I know it just doesn't get me anywhere. The simple gospel I have known my whole life--that Jesus died for me and my confidence is in him and who he is and what he has done--I have had to truly accept and trust that. It is so funny to me how this lesson is learned and relearned again and again in my life in so many ways. I have had some really low points to come to the peace and joy that I have right now. I could go on and on about how I've been humbled and am learning, but I'll just stop there.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Winner Chosen by Our Little Visitor

The giveaway goes to...
Lana of Extraordinary Housewives!! Congratulations

We are babysitting Ingrid for Andrea for a few hours. We couldn't help but exploit the cute little kitty by having her pick our winner. She didn't mind at all. Thanks so much everyone for the kind words and all the good inspiration. I love hearing what makes you happy.

Friday, August 7, 2009

I'm Going to Artfest

photo by Karen Michel
These awesome prayer flags are made by Karen Michel. Check out her blog to see the other classes she will be teaching. I didn't realize she was teaching all 3 of the classes I was really interested in.

It's official. I've been drooling over the classes on the Artfest website and I'm going to take the plunge and go for it. Now, what classes to choose, that will be tricky.

Don't forget- you can still enter my giveaway full of summer goodies, just leave a comment on the giveaway post- I'll pick a winner on Monday! Have a good weekend!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

I'm Proud of my Mom

***** Update- good news. My mom is part of a team and they were able to help her out with the remaining money she needed to raise so it looks like she will be able to walk!!! I will keep you posted!

My mom is walking in the Twin Cities 3-day Walk for the Cure. She has been planning this for a long time. I am proud of my mom, she has been hard at work training to walk 60 miles in 3 days. It's coming up soon. My mom is walking in memory of her sister who died of breast cancer and for my dad's sister- who was diagnosed the day my mom signed up to walk. My aunt is fighting the cancer right now. I have a favor to ask of you. I would hate to see my mom do all this hard work and not be able to walk. Right now she doesn't think she will be able to. They set a pretty high goal, and if you don't reach it, you can't walk. She has had a garage sale and done some other fund raisers. She is getting there. The 3 day is August 21. If you could find it in your heart to donate even a small amount to this important cause I would appreciate it. You can click here to see my mom's page and donate. Thanks so much!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Blogging For Bliss

flowers from the Farmers Market this week
Thanks to Kari, for hosting this fun little party. She is a great example of everything I love about blogging. She's so great at hosting parties, and swaps. I love the blogging for bliss book, I spent hours at barnes and nobles looking at it.

I like the idea of talking about blogging for bliss. I started this blog 2 1/2 years ago. It was fun to reread my very first post. (Also very cringeworthy to look at the early pics.) I guess I started this blog because I was inspired by all the pretty eye candy out there. I wanted it to be a place where I could share the crafts I made, and meet other people with the same interests as me. I wanted to start up an etsy shop, and sure enough- now I am doing just that. It isn't super successful, and it's taken hours of learning, but I love it and it's worth all the hard work. I can't wait to see what happens in the coming year. I would love to grow and learn from all the great artist bloggers out there. I hope to attend ArtFest if I can. I really want to get more interactive with making things and grow more.

the wedding cake I made for our wedding

sharing before and after projects
I love looking at the world through the eyes of blogging, even though it may be silly- I love to take a picture just because it is pretty and inspiring. I know that other people enjoy seeing the little pretty, mundane things in life that make it a little more enjoyable. I like looking at stuff and enjoying all the pretty things God gives us. I think it builds the artistic, creative side of us.

advent calendars I made for my etsy shop
Bloggers are usually cheerful. I think we're all aware that life isn't rosy all the time, but there is so much negativity on the news that it's nice to find a place to share uplifting anti-depressive ideas. The blogging community is so supportive. When we do fall down and have rough days people are there to leave a comment and cheer you up. Bloggers are also generous, where else do you get so many people giving away things for free? Speaking of giveaways- I'm doing one this week, just leave a comment on the previous post for a beach tote full of goodies.

my giveaway you can win right now
I must admit, I'm not too good at commenting. I'm awful at coming up with clever one liners- I feel a little awkward. I am starting to come out of my shell though. I'm so excited to be participating in Ally's ATC swap. You can join in too! And I'm excited to meet people through this blogging for bliss party!

our adventures living in Berkeley
I like blogging because it keeps my family updated on what's going on in my life. And it's not too in their face, if they want to look they can, but they don't have to.

adventures of running a lodge that hosted weddings
Overall it's just a nice way for me to blab on and express myself and there really aren't too many rules. I like it! It's helped me learn how to take better pictures. I love writing, journaling, crafts, cooking, photography, thrifting, the outdoors, interior design, and artistic stuff so I feel blogging is a perfect marriage of all those interests. The fact that we can interact throughout the world for free on a pretty online journal is fantastic.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Summer Giveaway

click to get a closer look!

I'm celebrating summer by giving away a tote filled with goodies for the beach. I'm giving away one of my reversible totes, a vintage flat sheet, do it yourself magazine, 4 chartreuse plastic cups, a fun red nail polish pen, some sunscreen, and a mini journal I have embellished. Yes, I'm giving it all away to one reader!

I'm celebrating new beginnings! My old banner was making you and I cringe for far too long, so finally, a new banner. I am also celebrating the restocking of my etsy shop. I'm excited to bring you many fun vintage items. And I'm going to be loading it up this week with mini books with different themes. I'll be doing a camping theme, a summer fun theme, and a travel theme.

Here are some fun things in the shop right now:

Isn't this just the cutest woodland Smokey the bear fabric? (sold in record time) I love it!

I also have some of my budget bags in the shop. I left them blank so I can customize them however you would like. I can stamp anything you desire on them.

To enter the drawing for the summer bag, simply leave a comment telling me something inspiring you right now- new music, a fun blog, a good etsy shop, a great movie, anything you would like. And please don't be shy. Even if you have never commented before don't be afraid. You don't need a blogger account, you can just leave an anonymous comment and just tell me your name. I'll draw a winner next Monday. Good luck!