| May 9, 2012 | 10:42 am
I am so pleased to announce that I will be contributing some of my coffee bean bag purses and totes at the Portage Trail Barn Sale. My goal was to sew a bag a day for the past two weeks to prepare. That was insanity. There are so many moms who manage to juggle the work-at-home-mom gig. I don’t think that person is me.
I get distracted by my garden, my friends, my kids, my desire to learn how to build a drip irrigation system…. And another project that I am so excited to share, but I’m not quite ready yet.
Kid's Cape made by Portage Trail Barn
In any case. I have much less than 14 bags to offer at the sale, but the ones I do have are really great. You’ve seen the photos before. I’m also bringing some items which I made last year, some arm cuffs and headbands and stuff.
Mostly, I’m just glad to be a part of such a unique retail opportunity. My friend Mary Beth is such a creative and industrious person. She’s a real up-by-your-bootstraps kind of woman. And she has chickens, which is something I really want (anyone want an awesome house in west akron with fabulous neighors so I can move to a house with a yard big enough for chickens?).
There are many other vendors offering their wares at the sale, too. So you will need to check out the Portage Trail Barn blog to see her featured sellers to know what to look forward to. And even better, you can head over to the sale next weekend and feel all the hand crafted goodness with your own fingers. I am planning on restocking my supply of hand knit dish cloths. As well as finding some handmade gifts for my mom’s birthday!
- Spring Barn Sale- May 17-19
- Thursday 5p-8p
- Friday and Saturday 10a-3p
| April 30, 2012 | 9:46 pm
Saturday morning, in spite of the grim cloud cover, gardeners of West Akron got together to trade plant divisions. Elaine Chin from Chin’s Place on West Market street was the host, and she more than made us feel welcome. She had the servers from the restaurant bring us hot tea and crab rangoon. And if you’ve ever eaten at Chin’s Place, you know that it was great crab rangoon!
About 30 to 40 people were in attendance, each one bringing one or more plants to share. As everyone mingled in the parking lot, huddled into little circles to keep warm, we’d OOOoooo and AAAaahhhhh as new species were put on the offering pile. Divisions were separated into three basic catergories: edibles, flowers/perennials, and ground covers. The show stoppers of the day were the bleeding heart and Mary Bethel‘s aloe, for sure. Everyone was whispering that they were hoping to get a bit to take home.
Elaine had all the swappers draw a number from 1 to 100. Then she called them in order, and as your number was called you were able to go pick three plants. As things were chosen, seasoned gardeners would help newer gardeners choose plants, describing their type and how they like to be grown. People grabbed strawberry starts and herbs for their vegetable gardens.
Even though I drew number 75, I was not left out of the abundance. I was able to replace some of the hostas which Sherman has dug up and tossed around. I also grabbed a giant fern, some parsley, a couple pots of evening primrose, and a bleeding heart cut for Rob’s mom. Once all of the swappers were able to pick three plants it was opened up for a “free for all” until all the plants were gone. It was amazing. I don’t think that a single plant was left over.
I just put my transplants in the ground this afternoon, and it’s raining a nice little sprinkle on them. I want to give them a day or two to perk up and see what makes it before I take pictures of them in their new homes. I’ll let you know what makes it!
| April 24, 2012 | 2:10 pm
One of the reasons I love being a Girl Scout Leader is that everything that I am excited about fits in with the Girl Scouts purpose. Right now our girl are learning about the natural world and farming in our Journey “Between the Earth and Sky.” We’ve even been talking about regional crops, local food, and plant classifications. The leader’s guide for the journey recommended having a farmer come to talk to the troop about plants “special jobs” as we prepare to talk about sunflowers and their ability to clean up dirty places by drawing toxins like lead out of the soil.
Well, I immediately thought of local Paqarina Farms because of their work in urban farming in Akron. They might not have been using sunflowers to clean up their land in the Akron City Limits, but they have definitely used organic principals to make that rusty old patch of soil a viable farm which can even support customers and a CSA. I emailed Karmi, one of the owners of Paqarina to ask if she would come speak to our girls and she said, “absolutely!”
Yesterday was the day she came to speak with the girls and it was a hit! Our scouts were so amazed that our Farmer was not a man, but a woman! They sat down to hear “Miss Karmi” explain their bee hives, horse plows and companion planting. My daughter Olivia informed everyone that bee hive collapse is happening because of pesticides in High Fructose Corn Syrup (which was both adorable and embarassing). The Troop decided that I was the Queen Bee and they were the worker bees. And everyone played with tools.
Here’s the troop working in their journals drawing something they learned about farming from Miss Karmi. Most of the girls were really inspired by the “three sisters” so you can see their corn and beans in the pictures.
Miss Karmi invited us to visit in the summer when all of the crops are in full swing and her chickens are out and about. And I plan on paying her a visit to the Highland Square Countryside Conservancy Farmer’s Market on Thursdays this summer. I’ll keep you posted as to what else my kiddos learn from Miss Karmi later on!
| September 13, 2011 | 9:14 pm
I’ve mentioned before that I have the best knitting group in the history of man-kind right? Yeah, the west akron Stitch N’ Bitch is probably full of the coolest ladies I’ve ever met.
Well a weak-ish ago it was the annual Art on the Square in Highland Square, Akron. And my friends organized a Yarn Bomb for the event. I could go on and on about prepping, but really I think the photos should just speak for themselves!
| June 8, 2011 | 2:13 pm
Akron/Cuyahoga Falls locals should put this date on their calendars. June 24th from 9am-4pm there will be a Barn Sale (as in buying things in a barn, not buying barns) at my good friend Mary Beth’s Portage Trail Barn.
Mary Beth is a crafter/repurposer extraordinare! There are items to fit anyone’s fancy, whether you are a cottage crafter or a hipster.
I’ve been eyeing her aprons and flowers. Those are right up my alley, and I’m in need of a new apron to match my new kitchen.
| April 21, 2011 | 5:49 pm
Or the Momme and Poppe Shoppe.
Saturday the 30th from 10 to 6 you can find me doing my thing at Crafty Mart. I’ll be selling things from my Templeton Line, again. And adding a couple of new items for the men folk, as the theme is shopping for Mother’s and Father’s days.
And I will be having a special guest at my booth! My twelve-year-old Sister-in-Law, Emily, is an art prodigy. She’s going to be selling her own original art in coloring book form. I am so excited to be involved in the beginning of what is going to be a very bright artistic future for Emily. Her designs for the book have not been released yet, but here is a quick teaser of her talents.
See you there!
| January 21, 2011 | 7:40 pm
This past Wednesday was the Anniversary party for our local Stitch N Bitch. Good ol’ group has been around for 7 years now. I got my second year pin, which is a tiny hand knit bear. I’ll have to photo him later, since I think he’s still attached to the sweater I wore to the party and that sweater is in the laundry chute.
Our group celebrates the event with a blind scarf swap. To participate you just need to knit or crochet a scarf and bring it wrapped up in non-descript wrapping paper. Then everyone just takes turns picking a scarf at random and everyone says, “OOOOoooooo, AAaaahhhhhhh!!” as they admire our talented group’s handi work.
I wanted to participate, mostly because I wanted to get a fantastic new scarf that was made with love, but I didn’t have time to commit to the knitting. I tried to wing it at the last minute and wet felt some hand died wool. Let me just say, it didn’t work and so I didn’t swap. I was going for a dark bluish green and I ended up with this bright spring green. Then when I felted it the scarf was too thin and it split down the middle. Craft fail.
Now I have this long piece of green felt. I think it might be salvageable if I cut it into leaf shapes and sew it together into a scarf. Maybe I will work on that this weekend… Or maybe I will just put it in the limbo of my closet in the studio…
| January 11, 2011 | 2:40 pm
I have this truly wonderful vintage fabric, gifted to me from my friend Martha, that has been sitting in the dark corner of my brain waiting to be turned into a shirt dress. Though I haven’t been able to muster up the time and gumption to follow through with my inspiration, and so it has remained un-cut in my fabric closet waiting for me to get my act together.
Well, thanks to the lovely
Craftzine, I was introduced to Casey’s Elegant Musings and her Swing Dress Sew-Along. Hello, Destiny! This is the perfect dress, and the perfect timeline for me. I am PUMPED! I’ll be getting the rest of the supplies this week so that I can hop right in. I’m downloading the pattern right now!
| December 20, 2010 | 10:20 pm
Colleen and I are really blessed with generous and thoughtful friends. They also happen to be very talented and thrifty. Every year our friend Hilary throws a family Christmas Party and we all celebrate together and exchange small gifts.
The gifts we share are not the most obvious. Many gift exchanges are filled with lotions and scrubbers and massagers and gift cards. Those are good gifts in a pinch, but not meaningful between friends. So we have somehow managed to set a higher standard without adding any extra stress to our holiday shopping. We also haven’t really added to the shopping budget. But what we do add is a personal touch to the gifts and ensure that each gift will be used by the recipient, because the gifts are handmade and useful.
This year we exchanged sucanat, home made vanilla extract, home made peanut butter, home made lentil soup mix, home canned peaches, and a bent silver fork hook. I can guarantee that each of these items will be used, happily, within a few months. They will not waste away in my closet or cupboard. And each one was made using my friends’ unique talents, so each time I use it I will remember that I have wonderful friends whom I love.
I hope that you all have as much generosity and love in your lives this Christmas. Just a few more days left…
| November 18, 2010 | 10:09 pm
This is a big one. My daughter is a Daisy Scout. My mom was my Girl Scout leader for 5 years, and it is one of the best memories I have of childhood. We learned to build fires, camp in 3 feet of snow, ride horses, sew, and change the oil in a car. I would work on badges in my free time just to fill up my sash (did you keep that, mom?).
And now it’s Olivia’s turn. The craft for this week is one that might make me tear up. I get to sew the troop number and Girl Scout badges on my daughter’s first vest.
Last night at our meeting we worked on the Promise, and learned to finger knit using those fun little knitted loom loops. Some of the girls really got it quickly! Olivia made a bracelet/headband for her doll, Rachelle. If anyone out there in Crafty-Land has some Girl Scout activities experience, let me know, I want to make this experience fun for everyone.
Does anyone out there remember the Girl Scout Promise? Three fingers up!