Wednesday, July 28, 2010

In a Pinch

While we were driving through Georgia on the Family Reunion road trip we saw many things.  Pecan trees, goats, acres and acres of open land, then we saw tarps.  We saw blue tarps that covered old barns, we saw a clear tarp covering the side of a house, and of course the  canvas tarp that was covering an old boat next to a barn.  This won't have been such a remarkable sight, but we saw so many of them it was strange.  They were not all in the same town, or even on the same road.  The many shades of tarps were scattered through the country side.  So when you are in a pinch you can use your tarp for many different applications as demonstrated by the country dwellers in Southern Georgia.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Green Travel

Do you have the travel bug?  Yes, but what about your carbon footprint?  Can you combine your love for travel with your love for being green?  The answer is yes.  Instead of taking a large tour bus around London, try 

London walking tours.  Not only will you decrease your travel carbon footprint, you get a little exercise too!  There are companies that are starting to see the light in respect to eco-travel.  They are thinking smaller groups which means, less transportation, which means less pollution from behind those tour buses.  If you are not into groups, try a London private tour.  With tourism becoming one of the largest industries we all need to think about our own travel practices, try practicing the saying take only pictures leave only footprints.  With a walking tours London you could do just that!  

In traffic

So I was sitting in traffic behind a bus, and the ad on the back of the bus was for people suffering from mesothelioma.  I did not know what that was, so I did a little internet search to see what mesothelioma cancer was.  Turns out it is really bad, and can be caused from asbestos.  What a horrible cancer, how sad the stories of those who suffer from it.  Surviving mesothelioma is a site targeted for those who are suffering.  I can imagine that having a support group of others going through the same thing would be very helpful, to read others stories, and know that you are not alone.  If you know anyone that is suffering get them the free book of a story of one mans journey.


I recently bought a high chair at It was the svan high chair, and I love it!
I was lucky enough to find a coupon code for 15% off my entire purchase. I thought that was great. When I signed up I got a coupon code for to share. So if you are looking for a coupon code use CCXN7940 to get you discount. Plus if you spend $50 you get free shipping! Happy shopping. If you use my code I even get a little something in return. Coupon for you bonus for me. It is win-win. coupon code:CCXN7940

House address

I just got back from a morning walk with baby.  As I was walking and he sleeping, I started to notice the address plaques in front of some of the houses.  The larger estate houses have elaborate, high end address plaques and numbers.  Usually you can see the signs at the end of a long driveway that winds down to a house on the water.  You know the kind where there is just enough of a curve in the driveway that you can't see the house clearly.  What do you think about the large metal plaques that indicate your house number?  Or maybe don your families last name?  I really like the look of the metal address signs, I think they look very sophisticated, and welcoming.  It looks like they take pride in their home, and property.  If ever I have a long curvy driveway I will get an address sign for my yard.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Family Ties

Yesterday we travelled to Rochelle, GA for a family reunion.  We were told that it started at 1pm, by the time we got there at 12:30 there were a few people already headed out the door taking the food with them.  So we scrambled to get a plate, and pile it high with food that ranged from mac n cheese to fried fat back.  Everything was good, and there were still plenty of people there to show off the new red-headed family member to.  The directions to the location were, follow that road, but stay on the paved bit and you can't miss it, so that is what we did.  During the last portion of the trip the transmission on the truck was failing, it needed fluid and was not shy about letting us know.  The combination of the car bucking, the phone ringing off the hook with people wondering where we were, and not really knowing where we were going was all a little stressful.
The trip can be summed up like this.
Gas for road trip to family reunion $40.
Transmission Fluid $8.
Finding out as we were leaving the reunion that we forgot to take in the brownies we made PRICELESS!
So I now have a mountain of brownies to eat!  I guess it could be worse!

In search for the perfect pair

Let's just say the baby has a mighty tight grip.  And when it comes to sunglasses, that might not be the best thing for them.  Baby got M's glasses in the baby death grip, and they crumbled, and crashed to the ground.  As if the squash of his little hands weren't enough, the pavement was sure to finish them off.  So now we are in the market for a new pair of men's sunglasses.  There are a few brands that we are looking at, but durability is now one of main priorities.  Of course the mens sunglasses can't be too clunky and have to be polarized too!  That is probably the Number One characteristic that look for, once you have polarized glasses, you can never go  back.  So I am searching the web for some mens sunglasses.  If you have any tips (other than to keep them out of baby's hands) or brands that you really like, let me know.  Off I go to find the perfect pair.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Better Business

Bigger, better and more efficient, just what your business needs to be.  There are many managed hosting solutions for any size business.  Whether you are looking to stream line your large business, or if you are just starting out, there is solution for you.  Growing your business can be difficult, but with help from specialists you can let them do the technical side, leaving more time for you to focus on what is really important.   If you are an avid blogger, you could get a dedicated server to support your blog, and keep it running.  Most of the dedicated servers have disaster management that keeps you up and running more of the time.  I am just starting out and learning about all the servers, and what it means to have colocation services.  Bigger, better, and more efficient is what I am striving for, and with help from a company that specializes in dedicated servers, I think I will be well on my way.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Conservation Continued

Keeping on the topic of conservation, I saw this post about a photograph of the thought to be extinct Loris.
On treehugger they have posted this prize photo.  With only a less than 5 sightings in the last 70 years, no wonder we all thought he was gone forever.  It is now up to us to try and save his environment so the Loris can make a miraculous comeback.  Is it possible?, I guess anything is possible.

Bring on The Rain

The rain is coming, and I am glad.  It has been a few days since we have done rain harvesting.  Yes, that's right, our rain barrel is great for all sorts of things.  We use it mostly to refill the pool, and to water the veggies.  It has been so hot recently, that it is nice to have a supply of water to drip onto the vegetable garden to keep the peppers from wilting.  With the "feels like" temp soaring over 100 degrees, it is hard to keep the plants happy.  Our rain water barrels helps us do just that.  We are coming up on the rainy season so our barrels will be full most of the time.  Plenty of the rain water goes directly back to the ground, so rain water harvesting is no big deal.  I am so happy that we spent the money to get our great rain barrel with the mosquito screen on top to keep those pesky bugs away.  I definitely recommend having a few rain barrels around.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Internship Opportunities

Oh how I wish that this was available when I was in school.  The london internship experience would have been something that I would have love.  London is a great place to start your European travel, since they do speak English.  It can help you get used to traveling without the language barrier.  Spending a summer abroad would have been great, the opportunities now, seem to be more accessible due to the internet.  You can find opportunities for summer internship 2010 online.  There are specialized trips for high school aged kids.  Can you even imagine spending the summer in a foreign land learning about other cultures!  What a great learning experience!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Money matters

One of my financial goals is to have my money make me more money.  Investments is the only way that is going to happen, though I am not in a position to do a lot of investing right now, but IRA accounts, are a great way to get started in the financial markets.  This low risk option is very appealing for me with not a lot of capital to start with, I can start small and then once my money starts working for me, I can move toward stock trading, and online trading.  An aggressive portfolio can really build your retirement fund quickly.  With the entrance of mobile smart phones you can even do mobile trading!  Now that is the wave of the future, and it is here today.  You could be sitting enjoying a cup of your favorite joe, doing a little investing without even calling your online broker!  Now that is the way I want my money to work for me!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


Not in a bad way.  Yesterday we made not one but two batches of ricotta cheese!  It was the easiest thing in the world to do, and oh so yummy.  It came together in no time flat.  While the baby was sleeping  we pulled the ingredients from the frig.  The cheese was done before he woke up!

They are:
1/2 gallon whole milk
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1/2 tsp salt 
3 tbs lemon juice

Bring the first three ingredients to a boil.  Add lemon juice and simmer for two minutes.

The strain over cheese cloth into a bowl, and let drain for an hour.  You can either use it immediately like we did to make a ricotta cheese cake, or you can refrigerated for a few days and use it in your favorite recipe.  We are using the second batch for stuffed shells for dinner tonight!  Try it, it is easy, and the best ricotta I have ever had.

Chinchilla and college

Guest post written by Kathryn Liner
I’m a college student and live in a rental property that I wouldn’t exactly call “nice.” But it’s close to campus, big enough for my stuff and I can park in my own driveway for free, which is kind of rare for around here. Luckily, my landlord also allows pets so I keep my chinchilla Foxy here with me at school.
My landlord owns a lot of property around here so I know that he can’t and won’t come make a repair as soon as I call him. But when it comes to certain broken things, like air conditioning, they need to become a priority.
Chinchillas don’t really sweat so when they’re hot they don’t have a way to release the heat. Maybe I was freaking out even more because of Foxy, but I called up my landlord after researching some SEARS HVAC and told him that was the best quote I found, even though doing that was really his job, not mine.
Thankfully, he called them immediately and they replaced the broken system really soon and I could rest easy that Foxy was cool and not in any danger.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Bring back your buyers

If someone has come to your online store front but did not purchase, how do you get them back?  Is there an easy way to get them to come back again?  Retargeting your clients can be easy with the help of retargeting companies.  There are webpages out there to help you, remarketing your website to the consumers that have been once before can help you convert them to buyers.  That is what we are all after right?  After working retail, I know that when we were able to get people to come back with the sale of a gift card, they would come and spend more money.  The same could be true with your online store.  There is a ton of information online to help you build your business, build your brand, and bring in the buyers.  I am trying to build my shop and gain customers, it is a long hard road, but like a postage stamp, I will stick to it until I get there!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Shopping for a High Chair

Wow!  I want this Chair.  Of course, this will not be in my kitchen anytime soon, but a Mama can dream right?  Check out this awesome high chair.  Oh the possibilities with this very versatile chair.  It could last a lifetime.  So which high chair am I suppose to buy?  I just don't know.  Anyone have any suggestions?

Treat your Windows

I have a door that heads to the back yard and it is in desperate need of a covering.  The sun beats in during the afternoon, and makes the room super hot.  I need to treat my windows to some curtains.  The room is pretty neutral, and I could spice it up with some modern drapes.  Something with a little pizzaz!  The curtain hardware is also important for the overall look of the room.  Our room could go for some matte metal, nothing to eccentric, but defiantly noticeable.  I am searching all over the internet for Curtains, Drapes, Hardware for Your Window.  Of course these are not the curtains that I would use for my bags, just as a little treat for my window!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Spaghetti and Meatballs

Homemade of course.  This meal, with the exception of the spaghetti, was homemade.   The bread was a great foccacia bread from Peter Reinhart's Artisan Breads Every Day.  I used a little rosemary and sea salt rather than his exact recipe, and it turned out great.  The meatball recipe included peppers from the garden, and of course, bacon!  Who can eat meatballs without a fantastic tomato sauce.  Even though I am not one to eat tomato sauce on a regular basis, I did enjoy this one.  I took 8 tomatoes from the garden, peeled and de-seeded them, and cooked them on the stove for at least 40 minutes, then added a peeper, and some basil still warm from the Florida sun, and cooked it some more.  I added some garlic, and a little oregano, and yes, cooked it some more.  When I was sure that everything was done, and the liquid had cooked down I took it off the stove to cool.  Once it was cool, I pureed the mixture.  Then I just had to wait until dinner time!  It was worth the wait, everything was so wonderful!  I love having the great veggies from the garden to work into our dinners they are delicious!!!!

Want your own Business

There is a search engine for everything.  I have always wondered where to locate all the info I would need to own a franchise.  Well, my search is over, there is a search engine for that.  More than once I have wanted to own a franchise of one sort or another, and of course, because I could not find all the info I need, or the funding, I could not follow through with it.  As I was searching through the page I found so many interesting opportunities, and so many resources to help with the process of starting up a franchise.  A franchise for sale can lead you to the lifestyle you always wanted, or it could make you end up working harder than you ever imagined.  I guess it depends on the business you choose.  As for me, I guess I will not be buying a franchise anytime soon, I have to stick to my bag business.

Friday, July 16, 2010

One man's Trash...

Is another man's treasure.   As the saying goes, it applies to Threadbeaur, and recycling in general.  The best recycling program may in fact be the antique business.  Treasures are purchased that someone else was getting rid of.  We, as a society need to get away from the one time use mind set and move forward to the reusable mindset, or adopt the everything old is new again slogan.  When I am out shopping for fabric for my reusable shopping bags I find all sorts of fabric that has been discarded, and with a few snips makes wonderful bags.  Giving this fabric a second life is my way of keeping it out of the landfills, and making something useful.  Don't wait another year to go by before you make the switch to cloth reusable bags.  Get a bag that is as unique as you are.  When you get a bag from Threadbeaur you won't want to leave home with out it.  The best way to lead is by example, if you are carrying a great cloth bag, others will follow they will want their own cloth bags, and soon we can stop the plastic bag from littering our land.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Quilt Top Done

Here it is the quilt of scraps.  After cutting as many scraps as I could into 1.5 inch with strips, I started piecing this together.  The fabric is mostly randomly placed, however, the overall pattern of the giraffes was painstakingly drawn and measured.  So now the many many many 1 inch strips are positioned just so to make this lovely scene.  The overall dimensions are 36 across and 56 long.   There will be another one representing the night sky.  These two quilts each the same size will be a focal point on my living room wall.  It will be quite a statement at around 6 feet across.   I am happy with the way it turned out, and would you even guess that most of the seams actually match up!!!  Now I am not sure how I want to boarder this, if at all.  Any ideas, suggestions?  I can't wait to get started on the next one.

Free? Love it.

Who doesn't love Freebies!  I do I do.  I am always on the look out for a good deal.  I search all over the web for the best deal on the things I need.  Some people may say that it is a waste of time, but why not?  I know that if I wait and research it I will be able to find the things I want at a discount, or perhaps get a few free samples!  It is nice to find a page that consolidates all the free stuff that you might like  Similar to that of the search engines for travel (of course travel is not free).  Do you know what you want?  Search for it on the freebie source, or better yet, get their weekly newsletter, it's free, naturally!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Best Animated Movie – Wall-E

Guest post brought to you by Taylor Evalane
Today, my family just can't get enough of watching Disney's Wall-E on STARZ. Ever since we switched to direct tv and subscribed, they tune in just about every time they notice Wall-E on the schedule. This is actually a relief, since I'm a pretty big Pixar fan myself and not only tolerate the kids favorite flick, but actively enjoy it.
A surprisingly gentle love story, the titular character is an affable garbage compacting robot stuck cleaning up the Earth, long after humans have vacated for space. Intensely lonely, his life changes when a suspiciously Macbook-esque lady robot lands on earth for reasons unknown.
The love-stricken Wall-E does everything in his power to woo the visitor (who he later learns is named EVE). The puppy-eyed suitor follows EVE all the way into space, where the two will encounter the remnants of the human race.
Naturally, EVE eventually reciprocates our heroes feelings and the two share a zero gravity dance outside the hull of a giant spaceship, darting between the thrusters while soaring music accompanies their breathless tumble through the stars.
Pleasant and joyous in just about every way that matters, Wall-E is a film for families that will leave the kids better off than they started. It is an utter joy to have animated movies that have so much to offer a family artistically.

I need another vacation

After this last crying fit of the baby who did not want to take a nap I need another vacation!  Maybe a nice relaxing beach with a few rounds of golf!  The silence of the golf course sounds good right about now.  I could walk the course with just the sounds of the outdoors to listen to.  I can just imagine it, no crying!  How about a stroll on a beach early in the morning, to watch the sunrise.  I can hear the surf crashing on the shore, close your eyes, can you hear it?  For now though I guess I will just have to use my imagination.  I going to go look at to see what sort of packages I could get.  Could I please get a package that includes a fantastic modern room with all the amenities of a fine resort, and a golf package with a few quiet (I stress the word quiet) rounds of golf?  I am going to check it out here  
For now though, I have a few minutes after the baby fell asleep, let me meditate and enjoy the silence!

Friday, July 9, 2010

Project Scrap Busting

I am not sure if it was the 3 overflowing 18 gallon tubs of fabric, or just the need to organize. I did watch a show about hoarding, and I felt like I was a fabric hoarder. So time to do a project with the scraps. This came to me as I was sorting through some of the other piles of fabric. Why not do a 1 inch strip quilt. This is a 2 quilt project, one representing day, and the other night.  This project took some real planning on my part.  I drew it out the way I wanted, then got to work cutting strips.    Those are all the details I will give now, you will have to stay tuned for the reveal, which will be awhile. I have the first top 80% done.  I am very pleased with the project so far, but I must keep going, so it is off to the quilt room I go!
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Thursday, July 8, 2010


No not the action, but the clothing.  I find that scrubs are the perfect attire for working in the garden.  Since I can't wear a medical scrubs that once belonged to someone on the set of ER, I have to get mine online.  They are light weight, so you don't over heat in the Florida sun.  They are long pants so the bugs aren't going to get to my skin, and let's face it who doesn't love to pretend that in another life they could have been a doctor!  I won't be out there in a lab coat, but if you look in my garden you may see me sitting on my garden cart weeding with my blue scrubs on.

Is timing Everything?

When it comes to listing your items on Etsy do you think time of day has anything to do with it?  This has been discussed over and over in many forums, blogs and chat rooms, but have we come up with any conclusions?  At the end of this month I will have been a member of etsy for 3 years (wow, time flies).
It has been educational, fun, exciting, and sometimes slow.  I have not figured out the magical hour, but what I do know is the more you post, the more people see you.  Pictures are also a key to selling, better  pictures + more people viewing your post...equals more sales.   There was a time when I was posting everyday, staying at the top of the category, and really promoting my shop.  Bags were selling, and people were visiting my online storefront.  After a while, I got behind, then I was in a lull.  It is time for Threadbeaur to make a come back.  I am revamping my photos, and increasing my inventory.
Going into the 4th year, I am going to try to keep my shop up to date, and keep it full of glorious eco friendly shopping bags and reusable coffee sleeves.  Tell me about your Etsy experiences.  We all learn from each other and I would love to hear your story.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Computer Calamity!

UGGGHH!  I try to boot up my old Macintosh desktop computer to search through my photos.  Only to hear the click, click, clunk of the hard drive.  Why didn't I back up all my photos?!  I need to look into DVD duplicators so that I can make a few copies of my photos.  I don't want to have to worry about whether our not I have this photo backed up.  I could use a DVD duplication guide to get me started, any one proficient in that?  You never know when your computer is going to go on the fritz.
What would be really cool is to get a CD printer and put one of the photos right on the front of the disc.  That way you could put a picture of the dog on a CD and know that all the photos on there are ones of the family pooch!
Now instead of backing up my pictures I have to take the computer to a hard drive restoration.  I have never had to do this before, so I am nervous about if they can indeed salvage my photos.  With over 50,000 picutres on that one computer, I really would be sad if I lost them all.  The moral of this story is to back up your pictures.  Whether you opt for DVD, CD or external hard drive, it is worth the time and money to back up your memories!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

SunGlasses for All

Sunglasses are a must on vacation on a sailboat. Since we all have polarized glasses, why shouldn't baby? Nobody likes to squint. We picked up this great pair of BabyBanz before we left on our sailing adventure. Baby loved to wear them, the soft band keeps the glasses put even when the wind is blowing and you are really moving. Looking out to the great wide ocean baby uses his glasses to see the beautiful blue waters ahead! Sail On!
We love them, and think you will too!
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Into the Sunset

I said I was gone for awhile.  This is what I was doing.  Enjoying the sunset in a sunny paradise.  It was wonderful to be a way.  It seems that vacation always gives you a new outlook on life.  When away from technology you remember what it was like before cell phones, computers, iphones, etc.  A few things I learned while on vacation.
1.  You can spend a week on a boat and not get burned (even with a baby).
2.  Baby will have fun, if you are having fun.  Just Relax!
3.  It is best to stay in the shade.
4.  Enjoy every sunset.

So as you are hurrying around doing the things that HAVE to be done today, remember to take time and look around you.  There is beauty in everything!

Monday, July 5, 2010

More new Items

After being out of touch for over 11 days I am back.  I am going to be posting to the shop more often, and hopefully increasing the inventory.  Be on the look out for new grocery bags, and a few shoulder bags.  
I will be bulking up my coffee sleeve production, and posting a few bulk listings as well as a few singles.  If you have any special requests for a certain number of coffee sleeves let me know.  Save money with the bulk listings, and multiple custom orders.  Let me know what you need.  Here is my newest coffee accessory, perfect for any flamingo and coffee lover.  Check out Threadbeaur for all your eco-friendly gift giving needs!

Rain Chain Anyone?

Have you ever seen those cool copper rain chains that hang from the corner of cute cottages.  After seeing them recently hanging from the corner of a small cottage on the lake I thought I would look into them.  They looked really neat as the rain trickled down the rain chain in to a small basin.  After the rain the birds came and drank the water from the basin.  It was pretty neat.  They are not only for use on gutters.  You could have garden rain chains hanging from a trellis.  That way if you had the one with a basin the birds would be able to enjoy a drink in your garden.  It could help you turn your yard into a sanctuary for the birds.  I might needs these for my garden, now that I am getting the plants to grow.  These rain chains in conjunction with my bird feeders will bring all the birds to the yard!

Plants and Pots

Sometimes I wish that my garden was planted in an outdoor planter.  It would definitely cut down on the weeds that sneak in to the soil.  I think that the garden planters can define your space, and add a little flair to your garden.  Think how cool it would be to have a bright blue planters to off set the other colors that naturally occur in the garden.  I love the way blue looks with green, so that would perfect for our backyard.  What ever style garden look you are going for you can find high end planters that will add a little spice to your garden.