Monday, July 27, 2009

Money, Money, Money

Nobody wants to really talk about how much money they make. It's in poor taste. It's nobody's business but your own. And I agree. (well, kind of. If you're blabbing about how much money you make in public. discussions among friends are fine...)

But those of us that dream of quitting our day jobs, and making a living on Etsy - are very interested.

I read an interesting blog post today here, written by a shop on etsy with over 10,000 sales. So, it got me to thinking.

The #1 handmade shop has sold over 24,000 items, at an average cost of $15 (guessing, it is probably $18) - 24,000 x $15 = $360,000 - etsy and paypal fees = $335, 241. Of course, I have no idea what the costs are for making her items. And the shop joined in June of 2005, so that is over the course of 3 years. I could live well on just about $100,000 per year.

Could you?

It takes tremendous talent, as well as marketing know-how, fabulous customer service too.

But the #1 thing that will make you a success is your product.

How fabulous is your product?? And how much demand is there for your product? Is your product so fabulous that 24,000 people HAVE to have it??

Friday, July 24, 2009


Wanted to share some Woolies with you --- these will NOT be available in my Etsy shop, but on another really fabulous online store that I'll share with you shortly.
What do you think??

This is Goatie, made from organic hemp/cotton corduroy, organic sherpa, and organic cotton. Stuffed with wool. Droopy goatie ears.

Some girls.

Snow bunny.

Apple. Which one do you like better - the one with green arms and legs (like a little apple tree), or the one with contrasting orance and aqua arms & legs? I can't decide...

I have to make a LOT of them, so will be very busy the next couple of weeks.....

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

The Magic of Harry Potter

We went to see the new Harry Potter movie on Sunday afternoon. Got a big vat of disgusting popcorn and settled in.

I was riveted the entire time. I had NO IDEA how much time had passed. It was over in the blink of an eye.

Can I tell you how much I LOVE Harry Potter? It's great storytelling, in the very best way. Incredible characters (Oh Snape). I was disappointed to not see some of my favorite villians - Lucius Malfoy, and Voldemort himself. They were lurking in the background somewhere. And as much as I loved Harry, Hermione and Ron when they were younger, they're still equally mesmerizing as they get older.

If you're a fan too, you might just LOVE some of these awesome handmade Harry Potter-type items that I found on etsy. Here are some of my favs:

Everybody needs a Defence against the Dark Arts Notebook, from celesetfrittata.

And in case you like villians as much as I do, here's a particularly charming one.
Draco Malfoy, by houseofmouse.

In case you'd like to crochet your own wizards, here's an amazing pattern.

By darncatcrochet.

Can't crochet? Here's a finished wizard for you ---

by girlcalledric.

Do you happen to write for the Daily Prophet? By all means then, you need this badge --

Also from celestefrittata.

But NO self-respecting wizard would be caught without this ---

A wand, by woodwitch.

And how are you going to get anywhere without your broom?

By broomchick. long do I have to wait for the next Harry Potter movie to be released????
I wish Snape would come along and teach me some Defense against the Dark Arts....

Thursday, July 16, 2009


My kids went para-sailing while we were in San Diego. My younger son has ALWAYS wanted to do this. My older son only decided at the last minute to do it as well.

We went out with them for the boat ride, which was a blast all by itself. (I was too chicken to go up in the sky...)
So - the son that didn't want to go had the time of his life; the son that has been bugging me for 3 years was scared to death.
Really Fun!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

117 degrees in El Centro, California

We went to the beach over the weekend. The nearest beach in the US (there is a closer one in Mexico, but you now need a passport, and I don't feel very safe in Mexico these days) is in San Diego. Tucson to San Diego is about a 6 hour drive, through some of the most desolate country you will ever see.

There are the Imperial Sand Dunes and the Mexico border fence, which goes on and on for hundreds of miles. The Imperial Valley is between Yuma, Arizona and El Centro, California. Which is below sea level. I'm not sure how many millions of years ago - but this land was under the sea.

We stopped for lunch in El Centro. It was 117 degrees.

Last year coming back from San Diego we saw a haboob - which is a giant dust storm. No Haboob's this time....

Thank Goodness.

Of course, you are rewarded with the glorious beach and Pacific Ocean!

The weekend went way too quickly, of course.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Sick Kitty - Sylvester died today

This is Sylvester. He's about 13 years old. We have been his family since he was a baby kitten. We also had his sister, Tweety. She got out one Saturday night and - that was that. There are a ton of predators in the wild west.

Anyway, this past weekend, all of a sudden, I noticed that Sylvester was not himself. He's always been lean, but now he's skinny. And weak. And I had a bad feeling. Called the vet at 8am. Was there at 9am. Blood tests.

Bad news. Extreme renal failure.

A small glimmer of hope.....sending blood work out for a thyroid test. Thyroid disease can cause kidney failure. They can treat thyroid disease. We'll know tomorrow.

sorry for the blurry pics....not enough light inside when I took these....

Update: Sylvester went to kitty heaven, today, at 12noon. His Daddy is inconsolable. Sylvester (Mylvester to his closest friends) was a wonderful cat, truly special. There will never be another like him.
Goodbye, Sylvester, we love you so much.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Frog Update

If you read my previous post, we've had frogs in the pool. Not just one or two - 20! at a time. Some of them have laid eggs in the pool. I keep scooping out frogs and eggs. If I don't scoop them out quickly, the chlorine kills them. I'd much rather scoop out live frogs than dead ones. Except the live ones are very lively, and often jump out of the scooper net and land on rocks, or, right back in the water. Very athletic, these froggies!

Anyway! We also have desert toads out here in the wild west. They hibernate all year, and come out only during monsoon season, which is now.

I found this one in the pool, sitting on the steps. He was HUGE. Not as big as a dinner plate, but almost.

I scooped him out very carefully (thought he was going to break my net) and lowered him to the other side of the fence.

Sad to report, he didn't make it.

By the way, desert toads are poisonous. If your dog licks it, he will die. If YOU lick one, you will hallucinate. The Native Americans used to use them in ceremonies.
You have to be very careful letting your dogs out at night. Put on all the lights, and carry a flashlight, and monitor them really closely.

Anyway, I much prefer these little guys.

Friday, July 3, 2009

A Cat of Many Colors

So.....for a while I've been selling this pendant, at Buster and boo ---

I decided it would be fun to offer them in more colors, so - now you have a choice!

At only $7 each, they make a fun present! They come with a 24" satin cord, in a cute organza pouch - all ready for gift giving.
Hope you like them!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Frogs in the Pool!!!

It's monsoon season - all of a sudden - here in Tucson Arizona. Monsoons are huge thunderstorms, and can be torrential, with very damaging winds, thunder and lightning. The dry riverbeds and washes can flood, very quickly.

Monsoon season brings out all kinds of critters.

There's the poisonous desert toad. They are bigger than a man's hand, and whatever you do - DON'T let your dog near them. If your dog licks them, they can die. If YOU lick them, you can hallucinate.

Tarantulas. I haven't seen any yet. Any day now.....

Scorpions. Black widow spiders. Snakes. Don't I just love living here?

BUT, today, we have new visitors.


In the pool.

TONS of them.

What am I going to do with them??

I need to turn on the filter, so the pool can get cleaned. There's quite a bit of debris after last night's storm. But can I? Will the filter scoop up all the froggies?

And, where did they come from? Did they drop from the sky during the storm? Some of them like hanging out in the filter bucket ---

And some of them like getting piggyback rides on each other. Hmmm. What ARE they doing?

And what am I going to do to keep them from swimming in my pool all summer??