blogging goodness

The Misbehaver

I love my sneaky girl, even though the sneaking sometimes makes me crazy. She's quite the creative thinker, Miss V. Lately, she's been drawing pictures of her misadventures. Then she came up with a name for them, kind of like a comic strip: The Misbehaver. She is the title character.

This is all very tongue-in-cheek, a good-natured joke among us. V is a scamp, that's for sure, but she relishes her sneakiness and we support her outside the box thinking as much as we can, as long as it doesn't involve things like drawing with dry erase marker on the carpet (which fortunately cleans up easily), sprinking pink glitter all over the house (even in the beds), or sneaking honey from the honeybear while standing on the countertop. On those days, there's a little bit of trouble...

Here's Miss V's new tumblr - The Misbehaver. We hope you enjoy it!


Welcoming Home Baby the Handcrafted Way

Have you seen this adorable book yet? I got my copy a week or two ago. If you're looking for something fresh and fun to knit for a friend's new babe (or your own), Tricia Drake's book is one you want on your shelf. And if you don't knit, you can peruse Tricia's Etsy shop instead.

Welcoming Home Baby

All the patterns are cute as little bunny buttons - I'm partial to the Sweet Dreams Hat, the Snuggle Me Nursing Cocoon & of course the Twisted Taffy Hat (all Ravelry links).

I provided the yarn for one version of the Twisted Taffy Hat and got a couple of sweet mentions from Tricia. My La Vie En Rose super bulky thick & thin handspun yarn is a great accent to the Blue Sky Alpacas yarn she uses in the pattern.

Mention

While I don't have any La Vie En Rose ready to go at the moment, if you'd like to make the hat as shown in the book, please contact me at springtreeroad at gmail and I'll be happy to spin some up for you.

Working with Tricia was a wonderful experience - what a sweetie! Thanks so much Tric! You're a dear. 


Starting tomorrow, everything will change

Ok, not everything. But if you subscribe to this blog, you might want to update your readers tomorrow because...

http://springtreeroad.com will be my landing page.

http://blog.springtreeroad.com will be my blog (nothing there yet, though).

But if you subscribe to http://springtreeroad.typepad.com/ in a reader, that should still work just fine.

I haven't picked the winner of the giveaway yet, but I will try to notify her by this evening, Tuesday evening at the very latest. I have picked the winner and emailed her. If this goes well I'm sure I will do it again soon, so please check back!

Today I'm dyeing wool and V and I are collaborating on the sequel to our (very) short (4-page) book, The Cat and the Person Play Together. She draws some pictures, I draw what she tells me to draw, and I write the story from her dictation. So much fun for us both!

I hope you have a wonderful Monday as well!


Davie and Chiyo

I got an email from one of the owners of the cutest little Etsy shop a few weeks ago, asking if I would take photos of V modeling two of their new products. Well, I couldn't resist that!

So Davie and Chiyo sent me the cutest flowergirl clutch and headband - they make beautiful customized clutches for wedding parties.

The listings are up - it's amazing seeing V in their listings! It's almost like looking at some other kid! Here's the purse and the headband. Pretty headband and purse on my sweet girl!


And she didn't even get the mud on her white shirt

If you'll be so kind as to visit my friend Sosae's blog, you can enter to win a giveaway for something in my shop - you get to choose. Plus I say a few things. A lot of things, really. I'm a talker. Yep.

So we made our hummingbird food (4 parts water, 1 part sugar, dissolved. No honey. No artificial color.) and hung it in the backyard on a shepherd's hook. But I didn't take any pictures of it. I had yarn to photograph and then V actually let me photograph her in a way that made me happy. These days she's not usually so cooperative (which is fine; I understand).

She will often happily let me photograph the silly faces she makes or with something in front of her face.

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Sometimes I can catch her without something in front of her face, though.

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And occasionally I'll catch her just being her.

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Those are my favorite shots.

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Sometimes ... oh so rarely ... she'll give me a smile and I'll snap it quickly for as long as it lasts.

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Those are my favorite times.

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And then I'll take pictures of whatever she wants me to photograph, so we can print it out later for her collection.

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I'm already seeing her face change into what it's going to look like next. I don't so much see it in real life, but will catch a glimpse of it in a photo.

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It fascinates me.


If you'd like to win some lovely handspun yarn...

Well, all our snow is gone - except for the big snowman bottoms in all the front yards! Makes me laugh.

Do you know my favorite part of snow? This right here:

Hot chocolate

I know now that I have not knitted nearly enough mittens for my family and that I must get on that immediately.

Another thing I know is that Oma Rules is a brand new blog written by Chris. She's just getting started, getting her blogging feet wet, and I'm happy to welcome her to our little virtual world. Sometimes it seems so small and cozy, doesn't it? Tonight it feels small and cozy to me because Chris is Alexis' mom and, if you didn't know, Alexis is wonderful and I love her to pieces. And so one last thing I know is that Chris is giving away two skeins of my handspun yarn. How wonderful is that?


And then my heart ...

... smashes and breaks into a million tiny pieces - but in a good way. Best viewed full screen, in my opinion.

The Moments Between, Episode 1: Japan from Trey Ratcliff on Vimeo.

Though I don't get to visit often enough, I love to get lost in Trey Ratcliff's blog, Stuck in Customs. He is one very busy, very lucky man - and a nice guy to boot.


Save the ta-tas!

The first person I knew who passed away from cancer was my mom's best friend, Christie. It was my senior year of high school; I'd known Christie almost my entire life. In some box I haven't unpacked from moving yet, I have a great picture of the two of us together and a short letter she wrote to me when I was a kid.

I remember my last conversation with her, the one where I told myself not to ask her how she was - and then that was the first thing out of my mouth. She was gracious; she was strong. Everyone I know who knew her misses her. Unfortunately, each of us are affected by cancer in some way or other at some point in our lives.

So, in honor of October being National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, I am donating 100% of the proceeds of the sale of this yarn to the Susan G. Komen Foundation.

Save the Tatas 001

Even if this yarn isn't your style or if you don't knit or crochet, I hope you will pass the link to this post on to someone you think might be interested. Thank you!

Long live the ta-tas!

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Please join me over at Alpaca Farmgirl's blog for Fiber Arts Friday!


Hats! Because autumn is on its way!

Amber, a really lovely customer, has sent me some pictures of the hat she crocheted from a skein of my yarn for her baby girl, Stormy.

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First off, I LOVE that name, Stormy. But look at her! In that hat! I love non-traditional colors and styles on babies.

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Adorable! Thank you so much for sharing your pictures, Amber.

Now if you need a cool hat, check out my friend Kim's shop.

Lizi burgundy hat

Vintage-inspired, hand-embroidered, classic! I think they're so cute. Don't you think? Would be perfect for a windy day.

Lizi owl hat

I know that Kim has a lot more ideas for her shop, so keep checking back to see what's next.

It's definitely fall now! V and I baked our first pumpkin pie yesterday and I'm thinking about soups and learning how to knit mittens. I can't believe tomorrow is October! Where did this year go?


Nominate your favorite handspun yarn (mine?) on Etsy!

From Etsy's The Storque:

We will be voting on the best of the best handspun yarn. You can nominate your favorite item or one of your own items by linking to it in the comments below. Spread the word to supply sellers and knitters!


I'm just saying, you know, if you wanted to nominate someone, you could visit my shop and then click here to leave a comment.

Just sayin'...



ZaZa Gallery

I've been wanting to have some of my photos printed onto canvas for a while, but it's not really in the budget right now. So when I saw a tweet offering a free 8x10 canvas in exchange for a blog post, I jumped all over it.

I emailed one of my favorite photos of V, and a few days later got this 8x10 canvas from ZaZa Gallery.

canvas

Now it's looking good on my fireplace mantle. It's very well made - the colors are vivid, the photo looks as clear and sharp as it did on my computer screen, and the canvas is securely wrapped. It's beautiful, don't you think?

At $25 for an 8x10, $39 for an 11x14, and $99 for a 20x30, it would be affordable to take some of those photos jamming up my hard drive (I so need an external hard drive!) and turning them into a piece of art I can hang on the wall. That's why I got the camera after all, right?

If you have a blog and follow ZaZa Gallery on twitter, you might try their links for canvas program yourself the next time it's available, or you can take my good word for it and order one of your own fabulous photos on canvas. A free 8x10 is very nice but to really see the beauty of a photo on canvas bigger is always better.


Finding my creativity

Recently I won a contest on Teresa Levine's blog for a set of handmade notecards. Aren't they cute? Teresa sells beautiful handspun and dyed yarns and fibers.

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I've already mailed three of them out. Thanks Teresa - what a treat!

Teresa also kindly sent me a bit of fiber. It's beautiful and I can't wait to spin it. If you follow me on twitter, you may have noticed all my mentions of yarn and spinning lately. Learning to spin yarn has been on my list of things to do for several years now; I've just never found the time. But then I lost my job and that freed up some of that precious time! Now I'm thinking that losing my job was a good thing. Imagine that! After 4+ years, editing someone else's poorly written words had gotten more tiresome than anything.

A couple of weeks ago, I was on twitter and found out that one of my contacts was upgrading her spinning wheel and selling her old one. I bought it and am overjoyed to find something I completely love to do. I'm practicing every spare moment that I have. I've taken one class so far and am planning on taking another one this summer. I hope to add handspun yarns to the Etsy shop I want to start stocking by August 1st (or earlier?). I also plan to have some photo prints there and who knows what else? I've got a million ideas (well, 10 ideas, but that's enough for now).

I never thought of myself as a creative person because I can't draw or paint and I don't scrap or sculpt or sew. I got a camera because I wanted to take pictures of my baby girl, but photography has really been my gateway to a more creative life. Knitting was my next step, and now spinning. I have found that I am, indeed, creative.

How blessed I am.


My quest for blog domination

My first blogging anniversary will be coming up on January 31st and I have had a great first year here at Springtree Road. I so appreciate all the comments and emails I've had from all of you who have been kind enough to visit me this year. You all really make my day, over and over again. And I want to make 2009 even better. With all the social media - and information on social media - out there, I figured I'd have some fun with it. I've already been twittering for a while, so please follow me if you like and I'll more than likely follow you back (I tend not to follow people who are just there to promote weird marketing websites I don't understand, but other than that, I follow most everyone who follows me).

The first new thing I've done for 2009 is to get my own domain. So you can tell all your friends it's now http://www.springtreeroad.com. There have been a few troubles along the way with my feed, so if you run into anything, kindly let me know.

Also, I joined Facebook a while back but haven't touched it again until last night. If you want to friend me on FB, that'd be supercool. And you can also join my network on FB. When I get 20 followers, my blog feed will appear there, which would be cool. I know I can put it there manually, but I haven't figured out how to do that yet. I have so many ideas for things I'd like to do online, but not the time to really get them going or figure out how to implement them correctly.

The next item in my quest for blog domination (ha!), is my second New Year's resolution, which is to open an Etsy shop. You can go there - heck, you can even heart me - but the shop is empty at the moment. I have a few things on my to do list, as you can see.

I think that's it for now! Anything I missed? Anything you're doing that's really fun and worth the time that I should be doing? Any questions for me? Please let me know.

Coming up this month, I'll have some musings on how I learned what I know about photography, an awesome children's book review, another in the series of houses I have lived in, some photos from my new Diana camera that I suppose I won in a contest but really feel like it was a gift from a friend, plus the usual ramblings.

Later, tomaters.


Wisdom begins...

We three went to the park the other day. It's a wonderful park - too bad it's going to be closed from January to April for repairs! V is already attached. I'll have a few more pictures from there over the next day or two.

Anyway, this sign is there. I love it and I just had to catch some flare to go with.

wisdom begins with wonder

I will probably mention this one more time after things calm down from ringing in the New Year, but I have gotten my own domain. If you read this blog through a reader, you can change it in your reader or not, but if you are kind enough to link to my site on your own blog, I would be grateful if you would update the link to the new domain. Thanks!


Winston & Frog

Before I'm too late - if you need an extra stocking stuffer or two for Christmas - let me show you the cuteness. This is Winston the Sleeping Whale. He's adorable!

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My friend Kim sells the cutest - and extremely affordable - stuffies in her Etsy store, Sewciopath's Shoppe. This is Frog.

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V loves them both - they're always on her bed and she sleeps with them every night. Winston's fins are just right for little fingers to soothe themselves to sleep with. And Frog is nice and squishy to nestle under tiny chins making their way to dreamland.

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Kim also makes owls, stars, turtles, the cutest red elephant, and baby hats and booties.

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Looks like she's sold a lot lately, so if you're interested you should head on over before they're all gone!

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And if you want to do what you can to save small toymakers in the US like Kim, check out this post from Z Recommends.


Today at Z Recommends

I have a post up today at Z Recommends, one of my favorite blogs. Taking Better Photographs of Kids is my review of Me Ra Koh's two photography instruction DVDs. Please check out my review and tell me what you think. Have you seen her DVDs? Did they help you as much as they helped me? I don't think I'd be nearly as far along in my photography without Outside the Green Box. I'm also saving my pennies for one of Me Ra's wonderful workshops, hopefully sometime next year.


Nie Nie Day - a last-minute auction

UPDATE: The auction has closed. Deborah has the winning bid at $50! Thank you Deborah and God bless. Please email me confirmation of your donation along with your address to springtreeroad@yahoo.com and I will send the photo.

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I'm so late, but I'm going to try this anyway.

If you haven't heard, Stephanie, who writes the Nie Nie Dialogues, was in an airplane crash with her husband. The pilot did not survive (God bless him and his family), but Stephanie and Christian are in the hospital in very bad condition. Design Mom is hosting an auction today to help pay for the family's medical bills and living expensive. I have only just read Design Mom's post about the auction and would like to put one of my prints up for auction.


Here are the rules:

-Bidding starts at $10.
-Bidding will end at 10pm EST on Sunday, August 31st.
-I will ship anywhere in the world.
-To bid, leave a comment, but please only comment if you wish to bid.
-Please only bid in whole US dollar amounts.
-The winner can donate directly to the fund through paypal and email me the paypal confirmation at springtreeroad@yahoo.com so I will know you've donated and then I will mail the photo.

Here's what's up for auction:


One 8x10 print of this photo, titled orange.

orange 8x10

Even if you don't wish to bid, please do me a favor and tell your friends about the auction - there are links to a huge variety of things to bid on at Design Mom, so check it out. Thanks!