Saturday, February 28, 2009

Lemonade Time

I have seen this award around the blogverse...and I just got one for my very own. yippee!
Thanks CandyCrack! It's nice to get an award from a neighbor (well, a couple cities away anyhow). Hop on over & check out her blog...or better yet - her Etsy shop. This is one of my faves from there:

And now I get to nominate 10 blogs I think are awesome and show attitude and/or gratitude....
But since I was also given the Kreativ award and tagged with the 6x6 game...I will be bowing out of the passing along this me lazy, or tired, or not wanting to bombard too many folks with stuff...but I'm gonna pass - sorry - still love me ? :) ?

Six by Six Tag

My son was just over 2 when this picture was taken. He was dancing in his big brother's hat while the sister of said brother's best friend was cheering him on. That was an interesting summer - I watched my oldest's best friend and his sister a couple days a week. They had tons of fun that summer. I think my youngest dancing there had the best time of them was like having 3 siblings that would always play with him.

Thanks to Nico Designs for tagging me in the 6x6 photo game and leading me back to those memories. She's a fellow blogger and has an awesome blog and Etsy shop. see...

Now..I am supposed to tag 6 people...

Annette Piper - Under the Loupe

Dee - All Wired Up

MommyBee - Lil Bees

SolSisters - solsisters

ZuzuGirlHandmade - zuzugirl

LostMitten - lostmitten

Can't wait to see what you have for us :)

By the way... I also left an award for the 6 of you over here ...
May make a good Wordless Wednesday *hint hint*

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

BlogFire Carnival: Rich Colors

This week's carnival is about color - rich colors. I chose burgundy since it is one of my favorites...both color & wine :)
Here are some of my fave burgundy finds from ArtFire...

paper and glue ... Space Shiraz Button Brooch

CalypsoMinerals ... Raspberry Truffle Handmade Eye Shadow

Out of the Pink Sky ... Silver and Wine Wirewrapped Pendant

Last Week to Win Free Advertising!!!

Time is running out... Your chance to win FREE advertising is slowly slip sliding away. Whether you sell, create, blog, or write tutorials... any medium any selling venue!

What kind of advertising am I talking about? A 30 second in-stream audio commercial for your website/shop, complete with free script and voice over! This ad is for 5 thousand impressions, which means AT LEAST 5 thousand people will hear your ad!! This is a $112 value!

Don't miss out on this great opportunity. All it takes is a blog post linking to Blockhead Radio and a comment HERE. Nothing really elaborate required and just a couple minutes of your time to get the chance to win $112 worth of FREE advertising.

Let's make it even more simple: copy and paste this post! Just don't forget to leave a comment HERE to get your entry counted. Last date to enter is February 28th.

One minute of your time is surely worth $112??? Blog it... ya know you want to!

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Etsybloggers Blog Carnival: Why Oh Why?

1) Etsy. What made you open a shop on Etsy? What do you like about being a seller on Etsy? What don't you like?

I am not sure I that I can say exactly what made me open shop on Etsy. It was a bit of a domino effect. It started when I made a bunch of handbags for Christmas gifts. They were quite well received and soon my family suggested I try selling them. The initial thought was craft shows...but I am not extremely outgoing when I am at the center of attention in a crowd of unknowns. So I did some research.

I decided that I would at least get the ball rolling legit wise. I filed all the necessary paperwork to make myself a sole proprietor of Tilt Creations. One of the books I had read mentioned online selling. I peeked at Etsy and was a tad overwhelmed. I wound up playing around on Craftster...which I still love to do.

I ran across a few sellers on Craftster and decided to take the plunge. I liked the appeal of online anonymity. I took some pictures. Researched pricing how-tos and compared to others in the market. Then I set up shop.

I have been open since September and sold 14 items. My first sale was to my aunt. She wanted one of my bags and wanted to "do it the right way". The next two were to Australia...I was astounded at the price of shipping. Then there was a trade, a Saturday Night Special giveaway and 6 were part of a custom order. All in all, not bad...but still can be discouraging when you see people selling similar things left and right.

I have plans to change things around somewhat. Partly because of what I don't like about
Etsy - the gigantic number of sellers makes it hard to stand out...if not impossible. I have noticed that the more successful handbag sellers stick to one or three designs only. As much as I prefer to have my bags be all different from each other, I do see the necessity to scale back on the variety. I will be clearing out the bags I will not be making anymore, taking 2 or 3 designs to "mass produce" and only bring in OOAK designs bit by bit. Hopefully this balance will work better.

What do I LIKE about
Etsy? The teams. The overall layout and "slickness" of the Etsy set up is nice and appealing visually...but it is the friends that I have made that keep me there. Every time I am ready to throw in the towel they are there to encourage me back in...and they probably don't even know it...until now.

Thanks guys :)

Monday, February 23, 2009

Donna Pool: February's Etsyblogger

Buttons, Photos and Vintage Fun! Something traditional...with a twist! You can even find truly handmade toys - no sewing machine needed! Custom teddy bear anyone? That is what you can find at Donna Pool's etsy shop.

And don't forget to check out her blog!

Friday, February 20, 2009

Not Quite a Recipe

I say not quite a recipe because this is the dish I throw together when I don't know what to have. But it is yummy...very simple...but yummy.

Keep in mind that I don't actually measure...

Serves: 2

1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic - minced
1-2 bunch scallions - sliced (or onion if no scallions available)
1 Portabello mushrooms - cut into chunks (use either baby or large caps)
1 Tomato - cut into chunks - any tomato will do (I used grape tomatoes in this pic)
1 can Artichoke - cut into chunks
splash or 2 of red cooking wine (or balsamic vinegar)
tarragon (or oregano, basil, marjoram, etc)
black pepper

rice or noodles - cook as directed for 2 servings

Heat oil in large skillet
Add scallions & garlic - saute 2-3 minutes until soft
Add artichoke, mushrooms & red wine - saute 3-5 minutes
Add tomatoes & herbs and cook until soft

Serve over rice or noodles

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Fun Whedony Fun

Whedonverse Swap Goodies by Crafty Cat

I had originally written this up with just the pictures - but was reminded that I should give some explanations. The swap was themed around anything from Joss Whedon: Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, Firefly, Serenity, Dr Horrible or any of the comics. My partner & I focused on the Buffy and Firefly worlds.

Crafty Cat sent me the 2 tees: Blue Sun (from Firefly/Serenity) and "Bored Now" (Dark Willow from Buffy). The knitted cloth with the Buffy "B" textured in - so cool! An amigurumi Wash dinosaur (for those that don't know, he is the pilot of Serenity & likes to play with his plastic dinosaurs on the dashboard). A bookmark with one of my (many) faves quotes from Buffy, "Xander, don't speak Latin in front of the books". And last, but certainly not least, Mal naked on a rock. This is one of my favorite scenes...and not just because we get to see Nathan Fillion's a great episode...very funny....and ok, he looks great naked on a rock.

Click here to see what I made for her.
Click here to see the Whedonverse inspired treasury I put together.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

On a Tutu and a Dare

I listen to Blockhead Radio on a pretty regular basis. I am even part of their group, Pluggers United. It's a fun group, we always have a good laugh and help each other out in the process. It is an artisan for artisans ideal. And Rod is the composer of this wacky band of artsy hooligans. Adding to the laughs this week...a dare. A good dare. A funny dare. Possibly a scary dare.

If 50 5,000 Impression Ads are sold in the next 30 days, he will dress up in ballerina gear & post it on all his blogs! Now, I realize you may not want to see such a sight... a full grown fishing/Nascar dad of 6 in a tutu? But at least you would know that you were part of making it happen. After all, I can't blame you if you don't want to look :)

Interested? Just pop over here.

....just to give you an idea...

Friday, February 13, 2009

Apple Spinach Chicken

Servings: 2
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Start to finish: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes

2 teaspoons vegetable oil
10 ounces chicken breast halves without skin (1 large or 1.5 medium breasts), cut into chunks
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon garlic, minced
1 tablespoon brown mustard, spicy
1/2 cup apple cider
1 cup Granny Smith apple, 1 medium, cored and sliced
16 ounces fresh spinach, baby, or chopped swiss chard

1. Heat oil in large skillet over med-hi heat.

2. Sprinkle chicken with salt & pepper & add to skillet. Cook 5-6 minutes per side or until well browned. Remove from heat & keep warm.

3. Add next 4 ingredients (thru apple slices) & bring to a boil. Reduce heat & simmer, stirring often, 5 minutes.

4. Return chicken & juices to pan. Cook, stirring occasionally, until sauce thickens & chicken is cooked through, about 3 minutes.

5. Add spinach & toss until wilted, about 1 minute. Serve hot.

Per Serving: 279 Calories; 7g Fat (23.0% calories from fat); 1g Saturated fat; 33g Protein; 23g Carbohydrate; 7g Dietary Fiber; 66mg Cholesterol; 625mg Sodium.
Exchanges: 0 Grain(Starch); 3 1/2 Lean Meat; 1 1/2 Vegetable; 1 Fruit; 1 Fat.

Source: Health magazine Jan/Feb 2007

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Art Fire BlogFire: How-to

I have recently joined the BlogFire guild on Art Fire and right off, I have a blog carnival. The theme is "How-to". I wish I could have thought of a how-to of my own in time, but alas, there was not enough time. I do plan on doing one very soon though and will be thinking of my BlogFire buddies when I do it :)

We also had the option of sharing a how-to of someone else's that we have found helpful. This is great, now I don't feel like I wimped out. And bonus - the tutorial I will be sharing was one of the winners of my One World One Heart Giveaway.

I ran across her site during this great event (if you missed it this year, there is always next year). She makes great quilts and shares some great tutorials on her blog, Lola...again. The tutorial I want to share is her Binder Cover Tutorial. I have seen many tuts on this, but none that have the quilted aspect to it. This is what your final project will look like when you are done:

So what are you waiting for? Hop on over to Lola...again and get crafting!

And the Winners Are...

One World One Heart giveaway is now over and it is time for the winners to be announced! I ahd 2 prizes to give out this year, so I got to choose 2 winners!
She has 6 kids and sews to keep herself sane - sounds familiar :) She sews fabulous quilts and has wonderful tutorials on her blog, Lola should go check them out.

Next up is

She is an artist and writer. Hop on over to her blog where she shares her works and life. You can even purchase her creations over at her
etsy shop. This is one of my faves:

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Promote a Sister Sunday: Mary Morra

It's is Sunday once more and time again for a Carried Away Bags Team member spotlight. Today is Mary Morra. Like me, she is lucky enough to be a stay at home mom. She had once worked as a Vice President of a bank! I can't imagine there was much room for creativity there.

She makes wonderful fun & funky bags, wallets, card holders, totes and more. She is open for custom orders, and if you like fun fabrics - she's got them! Just check out her flickr and see for yourself. Here are some of my faves:

Business/Gift Card Holder: Kashmir

SophieSling: 60s Lava

Christy Clutch with detachable keyfob: Rounded Corners

"I design and create my bags with function and beauty in mind. “Would I wear this everyday? Would my mom, sister, niece, and friend wear it??” This is the question that I start with and create from there.
Then the fun part – the fabric. I search for unique fabrics with interesting designs that are durable and will stand up to wear and tear."
- Mary Morra

You can find all her fabulous creations in her Etsy shop. She also has a blog, facebook and a flickr account where you can see her fabrics & more of her creations.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Selling Venues Series: Searches

I have started doing the Search Feature portion of this series. I have highlighted 6 venues today with a coordinating treasury on my other blog. I did not want to go too easy, so I used Morning Coffee Soap for my search. I have noted the number of results of each search and any further searching that was needed to locate an item. Any advanced searching or filtering is also noted.

Search box: w/drop down menu for description, tag, title, seller name, vintage, supply…no “true” advanced search.
When you get your results, there is a filter results tip list on the sidebar
Sidebar search: by Category,
Gift Guides, Showcases (at center top), Explore: Color, Treasury, Pounce, Shop Local, Time Machine, Editors Pick & at the bottom Recently Listed...and of course the hand picked Treasury on the Front Page

Input: “morning coffee soap” resulted in 1 page, 9 items
Note: they were all actual soap


Search box: Menu with boxes to check/uncheck for Handmade/Fine Art, Design/Media, Supplies/Vintage & Username plus an advanced search option
Sidebar Search: Browse by Category: handmade/Vintage, Design/Media, Supplies/Vintage – each with their own subcategories listed

Input: “morning coffee soap” in box with handmade checked resulted in 2 items Note: thumbnails here are larger than etsy
Advanced search: Member search; keyword box with “and” & “not; categ
ories: the 1st 3 on simple search; price range min-max

Input: “soap” with and “coffee” not “art”…I was prompted to check a category, I chose handmade
Results: 39 items, 4 pages


Search Box: shows you the number of items that will be searched…kinda cool
Sidebar Search: By color, Item browser, Categories, Top tags, Location

Input: “Morning coffee soap” in box resulted in Zero items…
Advanced/ Filter Results came up & I checked to research using title, description, tag: soap, coffee and Handmade.

note: you can reach the advanced search by clicking the downward arrow next to the original search enter/magnifying glass icon

Input: “coffee soap” resulted in zero before I realized I had to clear out the search box. Then I got 3 results.


Search box: Shop by Store drop down, search word box, and drop down for Category

Sidebar Search: Shop by Trends and Shop by Category

Input: morning coffee soap in box resulted in Zero
Advanced search/Filter: Item search: keywords, item type, items listed in market &/or store, view results by, sort by; By location; By item number; By seller; By buyer; Store search
(click pic to enlarge)

Input: keywords: “morning coffee soap”, included description, items listed in Market & Store resulted in Zero…until I realized you had to separate each keyword with an “&”…helps if you read the directions
Resulted in 3: one was a conditioner, one was an embroidered pillowcase and a baby blanket…hmmm…no soap, or coffee
The conditioner did technically fit into the category because one of th
e scents to choose from is “Chocolate Silk Frappuccino


Search box: drop down menu with Item, Description, Tag, Material, Colors, Seller. Advanced search link is right there also.
Sidebar Search: Browse by Category, By Tag, By Material, By Color (uses color chart) and By Price

Advanced search: keyword, tag, materials, color, search..along with drop down menu for where in the listing to look

Input (into simple search box): “morning coffee soap” with title, description, and tag resulted in zero
Search filter came up with narrow by category, tag, material, color or option and ability to
uncheck search words

Then tried w/o the morning – resulted in zero Then only “coffee” – resulted in zero
Then only “soap” – resulted in 5 items, 2 of which were candles

Search by Bath & Body category gave 5 soaps – 2 were on last search, the other 3 were a gift basket with soaps and scrubs
So…the search did work, there just are not many soaps on this venue yet
*Hint* Hint* for those who sell soaps…open market ready & waiting

Shop Handmade:

Search box: quick search for keyword with drop down menu for Everything, Handmade, Vintage or ReSupplies

Shop tab pulls up options for Colors, Craft, Audience, Galleries, New & Sale

Input: “morning coffee soap” with Everything resulted in Zero
Then “coffee soap” resulted in 6 coffee scented soap

Friday, February 6, 2009

Vegetable Frittata

Serves: 8


2 tablespoons olive oil

1 cup leeks, chopped

1 cup red bell pepper, diced

1 cup mushroom, sliced

1 clove garlic

3/4 pound potato, cooked, peeled and sliced

3 ounces Swiss cheese, lowfat, shredded

2 cups egg substitute, thawed (or whole egg equivalent)

3 tablespoons parmesan cheese, grated

1. Preheat oven to 400*.
2. In 10-inch nonstick oven-proof skillet heat oil. Add leeks, bell pepper, mushrooms & garlic. Cook until leeks are tender, about 3 minutes.

3. Transfer to medium mixing bowl & set aside.

4. Spray skillet. Arrange potatoes in single layer and sprinkle swiss cheese over potatoes.

5. Add egg substitute to leek mix & carefully pour over potatoes.

6. Cook over med-hi heat until bottom is set, about 5 minutes.
7. Sprinkle frittata with Parmesan & transfer to oven.

8. Bake until mixture is set, about 10 minutes. note: whenever I have cooked this, it has taken about twice that time.

: Per Serving : 131 Calories; 5g Fat (31.8% calories from fat); 1g saturated Fat; 10g Protein; 12g Carbohydrate; 1g Dietary Fiber; 5mg Cholesterol; 153mg Sodium.
Exchanges: 1/2 Grain(Starch); 1 Lean Meat; 1/2 Vegetable; 1/2 Fat.

from Weight Watchers, Simply Light Cooking, 1992

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Selling Venues Series: Just the FAQs Update

It seems like everywhere I urn online there is another selling venue. Tonight I ran across someone who sells on Made it Myself, Wildwood. She says she really likes the site and bonus, listing is free right now. They are still in Beta, so expect some hiccups from time to time perhaps. On the plus side, starting out early with a site gives you more exposure and you can grow with them - perhaps even help them grow.

So here's the FAQs:

ALL fees are waived until further notice.
The normal listing fees are:
$0.10 for 30 days
$0.20 for 60 days
$0.25 for 120 days
Listing fees apply when an item is listed (or multiple quantities of items are listed)
Commission fees per item: 3% flat rate
Commission charges take place only when an item is sold.
There is a community forum
I did not see where they listed payment options

and since I do noy have more to show right now, here is a shot of their front page: