Saturday, January 26, 2008

Granny Has to Brag a Little!

It wouldn't be a "Granny" blog without a "Granny Brag Book" so here is my brag. Maggie, my beautiful, talented grandchild made this hat! She is FOUR YEARS OLD! Can you believe it!??? She got a wonderful knitting machine for Christmas and look at her go!!!
I am the most fortunate Granny in the world because I have such talented Grandchildren. Maggie's sister Lizzie is also a creative, talented little girl. She is aged six. She got a sewing machine for Christmas this year and I am looking forward to seeing some of her finished projects. We did a little sewing on the machine while she was here over the holidays and I think she is a natural!
I also have a very talented Grandson. He is aged 5 months and he already shows signs of being a wild and crazy guy! While he probably won't do much sewing and knitting, I am sure that his Dad and Grampy will show him the ropes around woodworking and other such creative outlets.
Getting back to the sewing, I am currently on a mission to put together some easy-sew kits for my girls. I am working on creating some of my own and/or finding some to purchase. I would love to have some pre-packaged kits to take with me on my next visit so I can work with the girls to create some satisfying finished projects. Any suggestions?
It makes me feel really good to know that so many of these things that I thought were becoming lost arts - sewing, knitting, crocheting, beadwork are making a strong comeback with the young people. It makes me feel especially good that my children and grandchildren are so interested in the creative crafts and have an appreciation for doing it yourself!
So please check out the hat. Maggie was positively bubbling over when she called me to tell me that she had made it. Thanks Maggie for making your old Granny so proud!

Saturday, January 19, 2008

etsy and me

I started selling handcrafts at about 2 1/2 years ago. My youngest daughter told about this site and thought it might be interesting to me. I had recently retired and I think my kids were worried that I would become bored or spend way too much time learning the ins and outs of being a couch potato!

Wow! etsy has been a wonderful outlet for me. It keeps me busy, keeps my mind working and keeps me in touch with people.

The main thing that I have been selling on etsy has been various kinds of Knitting Needle Organizers. The one pictured here is a bag designed to hold circular knitting needles. I also make organizers for straight needles, double pointed needles and crochet hooks. I also do a pretty good business making custom order organizers. Some people like the concept and my workmanship, but they have some specific wants for their bag. I try as much as possible to assist them with design and configuration so that they are pleased with the end results.

Just to keep it interesting (and to use up all my scraps), I also make and sell lots of small Coin Purses and Pocket Tissue Holders. I recently started knitting some dish cloth/face scrubbies but it is too early to see if these are going to be a hot item. I have made tote bags, plastic bag dispensers and other items. But it seems that I can't make enough of the needle organizers so most of the other items take a backseat.

I recommend etsy for anyone who makes handcrafted items and is looking for an outlet for their creativity. It is also a nice source for some extra income. Check my shop, check other shops and see if perhaps etsy is the place for you!

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

I Liked It Better When SPAM Was Something You Ate

This is just a short rant about SPAM! Jeez! It is really starting to bug me. Everyday, several times a day, I have to go through my email and delete, delete, delete. My finger is getting tired, for crying out loud!
No, I am not interested in saving 95% on my Viagra. Can't say that I really care that one of my long, lost mates has sent me an eCard. I believe that all my body parts are about as big as I want them to be. And those four hot chicks that want to meet me? Well - tough!
Oh, and if you can't spell "mortgage" correctly, I probably don't want to do business with you.
There! I feel better now.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Multiplying Balls of Yarn

So Grampy & I have been on this tear lately to go through our house and get rid of all this stuff we have acquired over the years that just seems to be taking up space. It is proving to be an interesting endeavor and probably worthy of a whole blog entry about it. But I will leave that for another day.

During this process, it came to my attention that I had a boat load of little balls of yarn left from previous projects. You know those little leftovers that you diligently roll up and tuck away knowing that someday you will use? Well, it appears that I had been rolling and tucking for quite some time and never did come up with a plan for these multiplying balls.

Then one evening while I was snuggled into my favorite chair watching a little TV, I started to noodle around this idea of making some kind of thigamajig for carrying my cell phone. This is what I came up with. What do you think? I think they are kind of cute. I have listed a couple of them in my shop on etsy and, so far, they are just sitting there! So maybe I am the only one who thinks they are kind of cute.

So, it is back to the drawing board to come up with another good idea for using up those little balls of yarns. Heaven forbid that I would consider for even a moment tossing them out!

Friday, January 11, 2008

Reflections of My Childhood

I don't know if it just a natural part of growing older or it is because I am retired now and have more free brain space, but I often find pictures and memories of my childhood running through my mind.

From out of nowhere, a picture from that long ago past, a name, a place, an afternoon game will all of a sudden float through and (usually) bring a smile to my face. I truly enjoy being able to retrieve these things from my past that I had thought were gone forever.

I grew up in a sleepy, dusty town in Wisconsin. Sleepy, dusty towns in the 40's and early 50's were truly that - sleepy, dusty and isolated in a cocoon. We had no television or Internet to connect us to the rest of the world - or even with that town 30 miles down the road. For those of us under 12, our whole world was what happened within our own town borders. In my case it was in a little place called Winneconne.

I remember swimming in the Wolf River. I remember the walk home when we would all pick apples from a tree along the route. We always stopped at the grocery store and bought a Popsicle. They were a nickle and we could split them. Sometimes we were able to splurge and buy a dreamcycle. They were only a nickle too, but we did not split these so you got to have it all to yourself.

I remember playing Annie, Annie Over across the roof of our old, tattered garage. I remember long afternoons of Jacks, Jump Rope and Uncle Wiggley. I remember Jane, Margie, Mary, Lucille and all those other wonderful "best friends forever" from my childhood. I know we can't go home again (well we could but it just wouldn't be the same now that we are all grown up) - but sometimes I think it would be nice to go back in time for just one day and once again feel that warmth and freedom and innocence of being 10 in small town America.

So, thank you Winneconne for hosting my childhood and filling it with such wonderful memories and providing me with a venue in which to just be a kid. Thank you!

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Let's get acquainted

So this is my first attempt at creating a blog. I haven't figures it all out yet. Gotta figure out that picture thing - will probably need to call one of my children!

Anyway, I am hoping to use this blog to write down some of my musing and thoughts about life - looking back and looking forward. As I find myself aging (and not yet figuring out a way to stop that) I like looking back over my life and thinking about things from my past, things that have come and gone, things that truly impacted how I have lived my life and looking forward to what the future may have in store for me.

Right now I am busy being the best granny I know how to be, celebrating the wonderful adults my children have become, thanking myself for picking a perfect husband with whom I can still share and enjoy life, and building a small on-line business to keep my juices flowing.

So, going forward in this blog I will be sharing some of my life-lessons and reflecting on them, talking about my children/grandchildren and telling you about my on-line store. I will tell you about the store not to try to get you to buy something from me but to tell you about how having this endeavor has proven to be such a great thing for me in keeping me alive, vital and content.

Going to sign off now and see if I can figure out this picture and link thingy.