January 29, 2009

Spreading Some Love!

Time to spread a little love with another blog giveaway. I am thinking that with Valentines just around the corner it is time to say thank you to those that have been so encouraging and supportive of my Etsy shop. Don't worry, even if you have not even seen my shop I will still let you enter.

I want to send someone this beautiful little silver heart. This would be perfect as a gift to a friend, mom, or grandma for Valentines day.

To enter go visit my Etsy shop and then come back here and tell me what your favorite item is. Be sure and leave some sort of contact information for me or make sure you bookmark me to come back and check.

I will draw a name on February 6th and could potentially mail on February 7th to ensure you receive it on time for Valentines day.

Official Stuff:

This contest is open to all U.S. adresses only (sorry, not enough time to go international on this one).

Be sure that I can find you again, if I can't find you or you don't contact me within 3 days of the drawing I will pick a new winner . If you prefer to not post here you may email me at, write "Valentine Blog Giveaway", in the subject line.

Winner will be picked by random drawing on the evening of February 6th.

In case you have not checked out what the newest items are in my shop, here is a little sample of my favorites. Click on any of the images to find out more about them.

January 19, 2009

Games, Games, and More Games!

I think games are an awesome way to teach and to have some fun along the way. I just seem to forget to pull them out sometimes. I think if I lived where we were snow bound for days at a time they would be out a lot more often.

Many of you know that I sell my jewelry on Etsy. What you may not know is that I am a part of a homeschool street team on Etsy called SHE (Schooling at Home Etsians). You can find our blog here. Street teams are basically a group of people that have a common interest or live in the same part of the country (or world). This group of people have joined together to support one another and promote each other. The homeschool team has some awesome sellers on there. I knew of one shop that sells games that I love so I decided to see if anyone else has any games. This is what I found (and I am sure there are more).

Antiquity Gamecrafters has beautifuly crafted, handmade games. I have been drooling over these every since I saw the shop. I love handmade games and I really like the idea of old games that go along with the time period and cultures that we study. I wish I had this game the last couple of years when we were studying world history. Hope that we can have one the next time we cycle through. Go check them out!

Living Earth Gallery has some intersting felted clothing and other items. I have found tucked away among all the other items this lovely little card game with all kinds of great information. Go read more about it by clicking on the image. This game just went on sale too.

I also came accross this vintage game that A Dusty Attic has in her shop. There is only one available. This looks like it would be a fun travel game for those (like us) that take two day trips with the kids. What better way to have fun and learn along the way.

To find the newest listings by the SHE team click here, or do a search for "sheteam" on Etsy.

Re-visiting the Crockpot Post

Well, I gave it another shot. I am just going to keep this simple and blame the old crockpot. That is easier than saying I am a total crock-pot failure, don't you think?

I followed a recipe, cooked it even less time than it said and the meat was dry and not very good. Guess who gets to finish up the leftovers when the food is "Yuck!"? Yep, the mom gets to. No one else wants it and I cannot dump it. Not when I am in charge of buying groceries and I know the cost of everything.

So, the conclusion is.... forget using the crock-pot when we are gone until 5:30 pm and just make everyone starve while mom makes dinner. That is what they get for making me eat leftovers for lunch and dinner for two days straight!!

January 8, 2009

Matching Nightgowns

My girls are the complete opposite of how I was as a little girl. When I was K's age, I was outside every chance I had and was usually building forts, playing cowboys and Indians, trucks or just splashing around in the stream catching water skippers. Playing with dolls was NOT my thing at all. I definitely would not have cared about dressing them up or dressing like them. However... My girls are not like I was. They are girli girls and LOVE playing dress-up and playing with their dolls.

This year for Christmas their only desire was for an American Girl doll with matching clothes. The dolls were provided by some very generous friends that wanted to bless my girls. I then went on a search to find some doll clothes that were affordable. I also went on a search for some kind of matching outfits for the girls. A homeschool forum that I am on was the answer to both of those desires. I not only was able to trade jewelry for some wonderful doll clothes but also for a matching nightgown sets for the girls and their dolls.

I am posting pictures of the nightgowns and want to encourage you to click on the photos. If you do it will take you to an Etsy store of the dear homeschooling mom who made these beautiful nightgowns for the girls and their dolls. She is just getting started selling on Etsy and would love some business. The nightgowns are made with lots of love and care. They are wonderful quality. I know because my mom was a wonderful seamstress when I was younger and I was taught to look at the seams and details of clothes. So go and check out Seasideviola Etsy shop. I hope to talk her into some matching summer skirts in the future.

January 5, 2009

The Crockpot

I am determined to conquer crockpot cooking!

It could be that my crockpot is about a million years old (OK, now I sound like my kids...but it is very old) or I am just not good at slow cooking but every time I try to use it, we "strongly dislike" what I cooked. I seem to only have luck with throwing in boneless ribs and bbq sauce (that always turns out good) everything else I have tried turns out horrible. I have tried roasts and they are always dry. Never could understand how meat sitting half in liquid could be completley dry, but somehow I manage.

It could have something to do with the age of the crockpot. It doesn't even have a knob anymore, (I turn it on with a pair of pliers), it barely fits 4 frozen chicken breasts (we are a family of 6) and it is really brown and ugly! It could just be the lack of good recipes that is keeping me from crockpot success. That is doubful since I do own a cookbook or two. I think maybe I just have not found the right combination of recipe and timing. I just discovered a blog where someone posted a year of crockpot recipes. I am thinking that would be a good place to start.

I really can't justify buying a new crockpot if I don't even know how to use my old one. I really need to get a good one some day, but for now I think I will just try to find a recipe or two that my family will eat. I hear they make them bigger and better now. This one is called a "Smart-Pot." Do you think it would help??

January 1, 2009

Happy New Year!!

It is just a few minutes away from being January 2nd. Somehow I feel like I should have blogged today. Isn't that what people do? Start a blog or write their goal or resolutions for the year? I am still wondering what to do with this blog. Why would an introvert that uses up all her words and energy with four kids all day have anything to say?

I thought when I started this blog that I would figure it out as I went. I guess I am just not willing to be totally transparent here and yet without freedom of transparency I seem to be unable to communicate. If I can't be real than what is the point?

Maybe this will be the year I figure that out? Or maybe I will just continue to post fun things, photos of my beautiful kids (you better agree with me on that!), and a little about my jewelry making. I do have big plans to work through a book on creativity and share that journey here. I am just not sure where I will find the time. And again, how I can be real and transparent without putting too much out there. Such a dilemma!

I hope everyone has a blessed new year!