Saturday’s Christmas Market

Early Saturday morning, December 4th, Michaela and I headed out to Wake Forest to take part in a special HolidayMarket.  There would be crafts and foods for sale.  I had packed up all of my dolls, brooches, ornaments and farm charms to sell.  Oh, and some gift tags that I’d made at the last minute!

Michaela snapped this picture of the trees flying by.

The sky was such a beautiful mix of colors!  Who knew that the sky would be pouring down snow by the end of the day!  Okay, well there were flurries predicted, but we ended up getting a beautiful snow that started just as the market was wrapping up.

Michaela sat with us for only awhile, and then she made friends with some of the other kids running around and she had a great time!

The gift tags were a success!  I will have to keep them on hand all the time now!  Not just holiday tags, but Victorian and vintage tags for all occasions!

The blue bird trinket holder sold to a sweet little girl who visits our table regularly. 

Of course my mom’s dolls were a hit with young and old!  There’s a doll collector or two who like to see her latest dolls.  And the little girls love them!

I like how this little doll peeks out from under a pretty bonnet.

A little tree held my ornaments. 

There were so many other things there, besides what we had!  Food, oh my!  Lots of sweets, brunswick stew, and plenty of fresh greens and cabbage, fresh eggs, etc.  There was pottery, lambs’ wool and handknit items, homemade soaps and lotions.  I want to share some of these vendors’ items with you soon.

For now, I’m working on crafting for the last show before Christmas, so I must run! 

The Little Goat Girl

She lives down the lane and helps care for the goats.

Only she’s not holding a goat yet!  I’ve not made a goat before.  How does one fashion a goat from clay?  Keeping trying, I say!

She’s a tomboy for sure, and has the tiniest little…scrape?  Scar?  At the corner of her mouth.  Maybe from flying down the lane on her bicycle?  It’s one of the things I love about making figures from clay.  There are no two the same and they end up with little qualities that make them real.  Well, almost.

Today’s a work day, so I must get busy.  If I can just make it through today, then I’m off for a few days.  I think I can, I think I can. 

Any ideas on names for the little girl waiting on her goat?

The Sunday Evening Post

So, where were we?  I think we left off where I was crazy-busy and did not even have time to leave a proper post as I was preparing for the farmer’s market.   The farmer’s market.  There we are.

I had a ton of fun on Saturday morning with my mom.  Yes indeed.  It was a slow day for shopping as far as I could tell.  Last week I sold two pins in the one short hour I was there.  Yesterday I was there for 3 hours and did not sell anything.  I did, however, have some interest, and my mom tells me to just be patient, that it’s certainly an up and down thing and it just takes time.   I actually got questions about my dress more than anything!  Several ladies said they loved it and wondered where it came from. 

Did I dare tell them?  G.W. Boutique?

Yeah.  I told them.  Goodwill.  It’s my favorite place to shop!

It’s because I can’t find anything I like in regular stores.  Seems everything is too short, or too cheaply made, or way out of my price range, or too wild.  I find really unusual things at Goodwill:  handmade things, one-of-a-kind things, or, like this dress, something that is just sweet and simple.  In this case, it is something that is cool in the summertime.

Pokeweed and phlox grow together in the little wild garden. (I’m sorry, Mom.)

I came home just in time on Saturday to sit down at my work desk and type for 8 hours.  Whew.  It makes for a long day, but the first part is so happy for me, it makes the second part happier!  I know that will make sense to you.  And it makes Fridays easier somehow.  It makes me want to get my Friday work day done because I have Saturday morning with my mom to look foward to!

This afternoon I finally had a few moments to go outside and look around the yard.  There were a dozen or so drunken bees hanging out on the sunflowers.  I love the bees.  The carpenter bees get so mesmerized that you can actually touch them.  As a general rule, though, I try to just leave them alone and let them enjoy their world.

I am writing things in my planner tonight and doing some light straightening around the house to get ready for the week.  I hope to put the shirt on the little girl doll who will be holding a goat.  More on her later.

Life sure is busy.

PS — And look at the dress, not me!  I am wilted and tired from the heat and the farmer’s market.  It’s the dress I wanted to show you.  ;)

All Pinned Up

Where have I been?  I probably wonder about that more than anyone else.  The days fly!  There is more to do than I can do!  And yet I manage to somehow like this busy life that I have.

I’ve been working on a board/stand on which to hang all of my brooch-pins for the farmer’s market.  It’s coming along, if I do say so myself, which I do.  ;)  (In the background you’ll notice one of Michaela’s paintings.  I do love it!  It says COURAGE.)

This is my current favorite!  Seems like out of every batch I make there’ll be one that I just LOVE.  Well, this is my current favorite pin.  Just so you know.   I love the bright blue and the tiny touch of red.  The little shoe strikes a chord too.

As I continue to work on the pins, I learn, and learn some more.  I find little ways to make them better and more durable.  I find myself saying, “Ugh, was I really not doing that before?”  Or, “Oh my, was I really including that in the pins!”  Seems that the littlest changes make a big difference!  I love this learning experience that comes with making things.

And I love the little birdie!  It is A Bit of Birdsong, after all. 

So that’s where I’ve been.  That and a million other things.  I kept thinking on Tuesday and then on Wednesday that I’d get a second to pop on here and say hello, or post a picture or two, but the days went by like a blur.  I really must refine my schedule for my days off!  We are trying to get used to having a violin lesson for Michaela crammed right in the middle of the week, and it’s been a huge job for the entire family to try to keep the vegetable garden watered (from our water barrels) during this intensely hot and dry few weeks we’ve had.  And meals.  And laundry.  And errands.  And…  I know it’s the same for us all. 

There are more things to do today to prepare for Saturday morning.  I have to make up a little sign with prices and finish up a doll I’m working on.  I always feel I need to make more pins.  I’m nearly out of business cards, so that’s on the list as well.  I better get busy!

I hope your day is happy!

Something To Look Forward To

This past Saturday was the second Saturday that I have set up with my mom at a local farmer’s market.   What that means for me is that I type 8 hours on Friday, which tends to be a long day.  As you know, housework, errands, mouths to feed, and child-related responsibilities don’t disappear just because I work!  So I usually end up not getting to bed before midnight onFriday nights.  On Saturday morning I jump into my already-packed van (that’s the goal, anyway!) with my cup of hot coffee, and I meet my mom at the farmer’s market where we laugh and talk and sell things for a few hours.  I have to be home and in my work desk by noon, where I work (type) another 8-hour shift and then my weekend is done.  Once again, it seems impossible to get to bed before midnight, even if I do not do the farmer’s market.

Having said all that, there’s something about the farmer’s market that makes me really happy.   It allows me to work at what I really love doing, and hopefully some day that will be all I do for an income:  something I really enjoy.   It gives me something to look forward to.

For the 4th, we did not head out to watch a fireworks display, though that would have been mighty fun.  Instead, Michaela and I went through a few boxes of sparklers.   I marched back and forth in front of the house a few times, saying in my best British accent, “I, John Adams, do proclaim that we are free from the British!!”

Michaela said in her best 11-year-old daughter accent, “Mom, be quiet!”

Then we called each other Abigail and Betsy.

It was a long, tiring but very good weekend.

Lovely Wonder

I’ve been working on brooch pins, but there’s so much else going on, they have been slightly on the back burner. 

This one, Whatsoever is Lovely, is in the shop.

“Wonder,’ reminding me ever so much of Alice in Wonderland, is a keeper (not that I don’t want to keep them all).  She’s in my jewelry box.  They are both from pages from an old Degas artbook.

Working today, but enjoying the bright sun, hot coffee with vanilla coffee beans from my antique grinder (it’s the fun of it, you know), and trying to focus on just how quickly it’ll be the end of the day and I’ll be off tomorrow.

Broken Dishes, Intact Dreams

What are we if we don’t have dreams?

One of my dreams is my mosaic art: to have a lively mosaic business in the midst of my perennial garden.  I want a little rustic workshop to house my workbench and tools.  It needs to have a wood stove in it to keep me warm in winter, and of course for effect!  I want to make special mosaic works-of-art for special people.  Walking daily through my garden, with the butterflies and birds, surrounded by sun and bloom, imagining the next project is my dream. 

If I can dream it, I can do it.

I have a stack of broken and chipped dishes to cut up this morning.  It is ironically beautiful to me that something broken represents something whole.  That something thrown away is waiting to be turned into something that someone wants to buy.  I think that very aspect of mosaic art is one of the things that so much appeals to me.

After careful cutting and breaking, I have jars of tesserae just waiting to be placed on a base. 

My one concern these days is that I don’t become overwhelmed with all that I am doing.  With more than one interest brewing — more than one pot to stir — it is easy to give each one only a little attention and end up with mediocrity.

Mediocrity is not what I want.

Chasing after one’s dreams seems on the surface to be without schedule, without bounds, without thought.  To the contrary, I believe dreams coming to fruition is the result of faithful, careful tending.  Like navigating a ship across the sea:  steering, watching, setting a course, staying out of shallow waters, avoiding all that would sink you.  In other words, scheduling, respecting boundaries, and constantly thinking. 

Here’s to dreams…

Making Felt Sets Again

I had taken them down for awhile, but I have put my felt pages back up.  We’ll see how this goes for me.  I have requested at work to go from a 5-day to a 4-day week.  I really need more time at home.  I hope this will work out for me.

Anyway, the felt pages advertise the felt sets that I make.  It’s fun to have something to work on inside when the weather is cold outside. 

My desk is a cozy little spot.  In the window you can see the bowl full of bread crumbs and seeds (brought home from the bread slicer at work) to feed the birds.  I love to watch the birds while I work.  I love to see the sun come fully up as I sit here in the morning with my coffee.

I have started on some starter sets.  I want to make up more go-along sets for “rowers” as well.

My Costume

I realized this morning that I misspoke miswrote yesterday about the time period represented at this craft show tomorrow.  It is mid- to late-1800s.  Just so you know.  I had said colonial.

I realize I’ll be somewhat rebellious in my choice of costume by wearing flip-flops and short sleeves, but I’ll pretend I’m out on my own farm and have traded some farm implement for some exotic shoes from some stranger passing through. 


We are not required to dress in period clothes.  The docents there are, but not the sellers, so we are jazzing things up a bit at our booth by dressing up at all.

I do think that the “bonnet” is cute.

I hope to make a ton of money tomorrow!

Go Ahead Gourd-Head

At least that’s what my mother used to say to us kids.  

Anyway, I have some gourds to do something with!  We had quite a harvest year before last, and then a few more last year.  They are all dry and ready to craft with. 

I just love the colors in them.  The one with a lot of white is one from last year.  It just needs to be cleaned off, and I think there’ll be some pretty coloring underneath the white. 

I am hoping to make some bird feeders and some birdhouses in time for the craft shows this spring and summer.  I’ll be sure to put pictures up when we have them done.