Monday, September 29, 2008

So busy

Wow, I can't believe it's been over 10 days since I last updated. Things have been so busy, I haven't had time to breath better yet post haha.

Let's see, what have I been up to - well, of course I've been busting my behind working on Handmade Faire stuff. We've had an influx of late applicants that are just too cool to say no to. So, we've decided to keep our applications open for the time being. It's really no skin off our back since we have the space to grow with the outside being so large, so, I figure why not. Things I have to do with that still include:
send in posters for print again
create a graphic for yard signs
order yard signs
find out about getting the banner up over Main Street
if I can get a banner up - create & order banner
do a real big push for promo's & give aways, we've got a few but not enough. I have to hit the Etsy forums.
Get out to local restaurants & stores and ask for promo/door prizes
Finish floor plan, get it approved by Flying W

Ah, there's more but if I list them all I might get bummed out!

I've also been busting my butt getting the new website up and running. I'm one of the leaders of the group and I decided to put together an interactive website for the group. Hoping that the members will get in there and blog, post about their new items, etc. So far everyone is really taking advantage of the events calendar, so that's great.

The EtsyNJ street team is advertising in my favorite magazine, WeirdNJ. The issue just got mailed out and I believe it's on news stands now too. Mine came in the mail today, I was so psyched! The ad is on the second page of the magazine, really great placement if you ask me! I have been an avid follower of WeirdNJ since about 1998, and when I had my cafe in early 2000, we sold back issues and current issues of WeirdNJ & advertised in there too. So, yeah, love the magazine. Pick up issue #31 and look for the EtsyNJ ad - you'll get a secret URL that will give ya a special from participating EtsyNJ members!

Still in the search for a second car in the meantime. Also, Sean started his new job last week - it was all training. This week he starts his normal schedule, he's on his first 24 hour shift tonight! Ack! Cheryl's coming up tonight to keep me company hehehe.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Just around the willow bend...

Ok, so, aside from having Pocahontas songs stuck in my head, I have a new project I'm working on. It's nice to actually play with something crafty that I'm not pressed for time on - like the Jersey Devil shirts...which, shit, I still need to make more XL's and list them all in my Etsy Store.

So, yeah, aside from doing craft chores, and of course the ever life consuming work for the Handmade Faire - (still accepting applications, btw) which, don't get me wrong, I love, but it makes it hard to do anything else. Holly, from and I have been crafting inbetween sessions of me teaching her how to work her site hehe, and today she showed up at my house with a garbage bag full of curly willow.
Now, any ordinary person may have said something like, "why are you bringing your brush to me?!" but oh, no - no no no, of course we have a crafty use for curly willow. I'm in the process of trying to turn it into a wreath as we speak. My living room looks fabulous. iFlickrI thought about not doing anything with it yet, cause - what if a spider crawled out or something? Ah. I get the creeps just thinking. But ya know, I'm strong and brave now, fyi.

So, I'm making a wreath. It looks a bit scrawny at the moment but it's a good start. It would make a really good halo or head dress, but, only if I had a giant head.....which I actually do, but not this giant....seeeeee iFlickr

So, yeah, the living room is full of leaves and branches. Of course hubby does not even think twice about it, he's used to my craziness.

Ok, lets play I Spy........can you spy the wreath I'm working on in this massive pile of leaf?


if you can, I'll give you a cookie. Also, I'm pretty sure curly willow was the wood that Hermione's wand was made out of. I'm hoping to find a good "wand" in this bag! Might help complete my halloween costume :)

Sean does say that if I shake a branch at him and say "Wingardium Leviosa!" one more time.....bam, right to the moon, hahaha.

Too nice for my own good!

Well, I'm a little bummed. But, it's my own fault for being too nice, and not thinking before I speak haha.
The other day at the Flea Market there was a couple selling some vintage stuff, one of the things was vintage typewriter. It was pretty old, had a good charm to it. The first thing I thought of when I saw it was those awesome typewriter key bracelets that I've seen on Etsy.

They had the typewriter marked for $10. Quickly speaking without thinking, I said "you know, you should list this on Etsy - artists make jewelry out of the keys and you could get way more than $10 for it" they were interested, I like being nice, so I told them about Etsy, and the typewriter jewelry people are into. Almost immediately I regretted telling them, because as I spoke about it, I convinced myself that I should try it.

In reality, I don't have time to make a bracelet like that, but you know me, I'm a craft addict. It is literally an addiction - I HAVE to try something. It's hard for me to see something I like and not want to figure out how to make it. Even if I end up buying it, I want to know how to make it, even if I never do. I enjoy buying and wearing other people's work, don't get me wrong - it's just, I want to at least KNOW and TRY it myself too.

Well, immediately I regret not just keeping my mouth shut, and buying it. I contemplated sending my friend over to buy it, but I figured that would be wrong, or mean, idk. Well, today I was crafting with Holly from and was telling her how I should learn to keep my fool mouth shut! See what I get for being nice to people?! Ugh. Well, she knows the lady and called her for me, to see if they were still selling it. I figured it couldn't hurt.

Well, turns out the lady took my advice, and is listing it on ebay this week. She offered it for sale to me for $40 or $45 with the condition that I made her a ring or pendant or something, idk. I passed, obviously. Ahh well. See. Normally I'm a bitch to strangers (hah, sorry, it's true, I enjoy being unapproachable to people I don't know) , and it always works in my favor. Figures - when I decide to be nice, it ends up beating me in the ass. Ahh well, live and learn.

I'm off to Etsy/Ebay to stalk/admire typewriter key bracelets. Anybody out here make them?


Sunday, September 14, 2008

New Tablecloths!

Whoo hoo, this week has been busy. My MIL & I took a trip over to Jomar's in Philly, which, they're an awesome fabric store - and really great prices. I've needed some good table covers for a long time, I'd been using chopped up pieces of felt in a mix of black, brown, and tan - I umm...hated it, for lack of a better word.
So, I found this brown teddy bear kinda material, but it's still pretty light (not fur or anything) and it doesn't shed - plus I got this funky purple & green fabric for an accent. Long term idea is to have it pinned up and hanging from one of the walls, so I can put my prints, etc on there - but....that's going to take a bit more of ingenuity on my part, possibly even a bit of sewing, so it will just have to wait, until I learn to stop being so completely stupid with a sewing machine.
So - I'm putting 2 pics here to compare the difference, now that I have to the floor table coverings ---
Here's my booth at the Beach Plum Festival on Island Beach State Park last weekend (which was a great festival, btw) -
from the Front

And here's a pic from this weekend's Flea @ Kirby's Mill, normally I'm not big on Flea Markets, but I love Kirby's Mill & doing shows in Medford. Plus Holly from is a good friend of mine, and she was running the flea, it's always a fun day @ Kirby's Mill.
@ the Kirby's Mill Flea

I'm really happy with it, it makes a bigger difference than I even anticipated. It didn't cost all that much, either - Jomar's prices are fantastic, $3 and $4 a yard!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

True Blood

Just watched the premiere episode of True Blood, and I gotta say it
was fantastic. I have always been a sucker for stories where humans
and vampires co-exist - Buffy and Angel years ago were favorites. This
show looks like it will kick ass though. I already can't wait for next
weeks episode.

Abbie Galie

Sent from my iPhone

Friday, September 5, 2008

Amazing News!

My wonderful hubby has been a volunteer firefighter for a few years now, and an EMT for about 2.5 years. There's been a lot of times when it's really waring on me, because he works at his normal job about 50-55 hours a week, plus he does duty crews with EMS every week, and some weekends - and on top of that runs Fire calls when he's home. Spring and Fall usually bring a lot of classes at the fire academy, which keep him out late nights.

He's been wanting to make the jump from volunteer to paid for a while now. He's high on the state lists (I think he's scored #32 in the state) for the jobs, but the State has been taking about forever and a day to get on the ball with hiring. We've been patiently waiting, for well over a year for these companies to get their butts in gear.

Well, about 2 weeks ago he interviewed for a job at Princeton University, and he got the job! He'll be a firefighter/emt/security for the Lab there. This is on Princeton University's campus, but it's not - from what I understand - it's not a student lab. Some of the greatest physics minds of our generation work here in an effort to create a new form of energy through fusion. In which case - energy would be cheap, and abundant - it would be amazing. Well, because of the nature of what they do - they require their own fire dept!

This is going to be great for us. Pension, excellent benefits w/ low co-pays, it's a Union - so pay and raises are managed very nicely. What is really awesome is if Sean wants to go to school, at any accredited University - he only pays 15% of tuition, they will pay the rest. When Neil goes to college? They will pay 50% of Neil's tuition. It's amazing. Princeton is about an hour from where we live now but he will be doing 24 hour shifts so really, he'll only work I think like 9 days a month. I think the schedule is like - 24 hrs on, 48 hrs off - once you work 5 revolutions of that, you get 5 days off. Sean will be home a lot more.

He'll be on a 90 day probationary period, and after that he'll be in the Union!

We are so thrilled. Not sure when he starts. Mon & Wed he has some physical/medical evals to do, and then he'll probably get a start date. I think he's planning on staying @ his current job and cutting back hours, since he'll have all those days off. He's going to do that for a while so we can stockpile a little money away just incase.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Hare Brained Idea...

So my MIL, Pola - aka WebmavenNJ and I have talked for a while about having angora rabbits, and spinning their wool to make yarn. Years ago I had an angora rabbit, Commander Bun Buns, but we never spun her wool, the cafe took up a majority of our time then, whereas now, I have a lot more time to focus on art and craft, even if it's an ADD version of it sometimes, with my son Neil getting my attention hehe.
So, these bunnies happen to be hard to come by, but we did end up finding bunnies! We picked them up yesterday. Pola is keeping 2 of them, and I'm keeping one. They are three brothers, born July 8, 2008.
So - meet the bunnies. They are a musical bunch of English Angora's. First, introducing the bunny that will be staying with me:
Meet: Hendrix

Born: July 8, 2008
Buck (male)
Chocolate Tort in color
likes: This boy is a mushy little love - he loves being groomed, snuggled, and exploring on and off the leash. Loves leafy greens, oddly not into carrots - yet. He likes exploring and playing, but is also happy to sit quietly and just be pet. He engages Neil a lot when Neil looks into the cage, hopping up on the edge to see him closer, etc. He was also first to snuggle on the frozen bottle that I put in their cage when we came in from outside, he really enjoyed that!

Meet: Cash (as in Johnny)
Born: July 8, 2008
Buck (boy)
Lilac Tort in color
Likes: This is the big boy of the group. His face is in the food dish quite often, and you can tell he's got more meat on his bones than the other two. He is also the most curious, and a great escaper. He manages to compress his body, to fit through small spaces in order to see what's on the other side of barriers I set up in failed attempts to contain all three at once. Cash will be living with Pola in a few days when his cage is ready.

Meet: Elvis
born July 8, 2008
Buck (boy)
R.E.W - Ruby Eyed White
Likes: What doesn't this little cutie like? He is so docile and happy. He will lay on his back on my legs and let me groom his belly and feet! When I took them outside, he would just plop down and eat whatever grass was in front of him. He clearly enjoys green food, as upon close inspection you can see some of his lip fur is green from eatting spinach, romain, grass, etc. He is quick to clean himself up though! He also enjoys siting on the perch in the cage and looking down at his brothers. We're calling it his throne - he *is* The King afterall. He will also be living with Pola.

These little guys are sure to keep us busy. Don't mind the green in their ears, if you can see it (I think only the pic of Elvis is viewable) the green will fade - they were tattooed with their pedigree #'s in their ears before coming home to us, so the green will ware off shortly.

So, our plan is to harvest their wool as we groom them - it's not harmful at all to harvest their wool. It's actually harmful not to harvest it, as they will ingest it and get woodblock which could kill them. Their wool just brushes out, and we're saving it. Once the wool is harvested it will be cleaned, carded, and made into roving which can then be dyed and spun. Angora wool is the warmest wool available - warmer than even sheep and alpaca! It's a lot softer and less itchy than sheep and alpaca is too, which makes it very luxurious.

I'll be bringing Hendrix with me to the Kirby's Mill Flea Market on September 13 in Medford, NJ if you want to see him in person. I will be at the Beach Plum Festival on Sept 7th too - in Island Beach State Park, but it's a bit of a long drive for Hendrix, so he's staying home.

I have more fantastic news, but I'm going to save it for tomorrow :)


Monday, September 1, 2008

Instant Karma

So, most of you know that I used to own a restaurant called the Jersey Devil Cafe, in Medford, NJ. It was an adorable place, fantastic food, great atmosphere, phenomenal coffee & espresso, and good people.

My business partner and I had a falling out in February of 2004, and that was the last time I was in that cafe. It was a hard road to travel after leaving the cafe, because it had been my life for so long. Nearly 2 years to the day after my business partner threw me out - I brought my son home from the hospital. I was always a believer that things happen for a reason, and when I brought my son home, I was happy to understand the reason why the whole ordeal with being thrown out of the cafe happened. I could not have been a complete, dedicated mother that I am today - and run the cafe. It was one or the other.

I am also a believer in Karma. What goes around really does come around - and usually 10 fold. I put my life into that cafe, and every touch of it. I hand painted every table, my artwork was on the walls. We came up with an entire menu from scratch, secret recipes, specialties, the whole 9 yards, same as the drink menu. When I say I put my whole heart into it, I really did. We would work most days from open to close, as early as 6 to as late as midnight some days. There were days that we were understaffed, and I would be busing, waitress, and cooking at the same time, but ya know - we managed and the town loved us for it.

In Feb of 2004, my business partner locked me out. Lots of dirty, underhanded happenings went on from there. It's not my place to take revenge, or even judge. A time comes in everyone's life when you have to meet your maker and explain yourself, and I am sure that's not an experience she's prepared to have. Until then, there's Karma. What goes around comes around - you get back what you put out. You've all heard the old sayings - and they're true.

A few days ago my old cafe caught fire, it apparently burned up the wall and onto the second floor where my old business partner still has her offices. Her office took the worst damage from what I hear. The reality of the situation is, that if I had still had my cafe there this would not have happened. I was so paranoid about fire, especially after having experienced one myself in High School - I was meticulous about keeping my machines perfect, not overloading any plugs, etc. You could say I am OCD about fire safety, and rightly so.

Now, I still live walking distance from this building. My husband is a firefighter, and when I heard the pager go off for a building (fire) at Main & Union Streets, my heart sank. Despite the buildings current inhabitants - I loved that building. That building had a spirit (more than one, literally and figuratively) it had history in those walls, including my own history but it dated back so much further than that. The building was majestic and a beautiful focal point in town. It's historic, over 200 years old, the building will be missed by many. As sad as it was to loose Margie, my dear old neighbor last year - and Frank Salicondro, the music man of Medford, who passed away also - I'm glad they weren't here to see it go, it would have broken their hearts.

Frank had saved the Stagecoach building years ago, when it had been abandoned and someone wanted to buy it and put a Dairy Queen in there. He fell in love with the historical aspect of the building and he saved it, opened his own restaurant/diner for a while, had his music enterprises on the second floor - concerts on the 2nd story porch, it was just beautiful. So for that I am so sad that the building burned. On the other hand, with someone like my ex business partner, what I see is Karma. What goes around comes around, it always seems to find a way, almost like it's fate or destiny.

But ya know, all the crap she put me through - and I was 19, 20, 21 and 22 years old when all this was going on? Young? Yes, absolutely. Too trusting? Probably. Naive or Weak? - no way. In the end, all that bs happened for a reason, and now I know just how capable and strong I am. No more monsters under my bed :P