Tuesday, November 24, 2009


Okay I did it. This place (Zibbet) better last awhile. I bought in to the $100 for life deal. I am one of 100 accounts they are offering. When I signed up there were about 60 accounts left at this price. If you miss it they are also offering $7 a month for life and have about 2000 of those offers left according to the site. To get info go to Zibbet's sell page. I am busy with company this week so I am just posting and running. I will tell you more about the happenings for A Cozy Life next week.

Just Wandering

Just wandering around our home town with out of town guests. We took a drive to Canyon Lake and had lunch at Lakeside Cantina. All the shopping has been done. Who knows what tomorrow will bring?

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Sidetracked as usual

I was going to do some kind of getting ready for Thanksgiving post but I found something else I just have to share with you.

The Lavender and Lace Tea Set you see is from Whimsical Bliss Studios on ArtFire. This set and so much more like it in the shop just took my breath away with the delicacy and beauty of the designs. Just a hint if you love things like this as much as I do. Use the shop link to get details on an exciting holiday sale!
Check out this shop and come back to let me know what you think.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Why Blog?

That is what I wonder sometimes. Why do I keep adding to this blog? The truth is that this blog is mostly for myself. This is a place to pull together the scattered pieces of life in one place to remember them. I hope that every once in awhile I post some little thing that is of interest to others. It is a lot about family with no dirty laundry so that means it might be a bit boring, a bit about crafts, a bit about books or restaurants or events. It is a bit of posting that I get some mad money for and enough to pay my monthly fee on ArtFire.

So what do I want to remember this time? I want to remember that on Friday we got to go here-

Thanks to a kind and generous invitation we were part of a group in a suite to watch the truck series race last Friday night. Since we got there early enough we were able to wander around the infield for awhile and see the qualifying rounds for the big race that was held on Sunday.

Watching from the suite was amazing. The noise was bearable because we were behind glass. The food was awesome. If you had a favorite driver you wanted to follow scanners were available with headphones. We were also lucky enough to spend part of the day with a young man who was a real racing fan. He was kind enough to answer a lot of my silly questions about rules and drivers and other things.

Here is my other random thought. Why is it that most men seem to look great in pictures no matter what? While for ladies or myself I only really like maybe one in a thousand of pictures taken of me and this is not one of them. These were taken at the entrance to the tunnel that takes you to the infield.

I will tell you what I do like though. I am really liking bloggers new way of handling pictures. 

Friday, November 13, 2009

Colors of the Season

This scene was in Zion National Park a couple years ago. As we get some cooler temperatures here in the desert I think about the beauty of places like this. By cooler I mean we may get down to the 60's in the day time in the next week. I get to wear some of my favorite long sleeved shirts and start thinking about making warm, comforting foods like pots of soup for dinner.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

My Veteran

My husband is a Navy veteran. His career spanned 20 years from 1973 to 1993. That career brought out the best in him and helped shape who he is today. I am going to share with you the ships he served on. All the images link to a Wikipedia article about the ship if you are interested. He also had shore duty tours at the Technical Library, Naval Station San Diego, Fleet Training Group, San Diego and Naval Reserve Center, Salt Lake City.

Some days when he thinks about each and every one of them no longer in service it makes him feel old. Even his rate of BT (boiler technician) no longer exists.

First is the USS Proteus. He was part if Operation New Life while stationed on this ship in the 1970's.

Next is the Norton Sound. This was the ship he was serving on when we met.

When Jim was serving on the USS Pyro we went through our first WestPac. A WestPac is an extended cruise of the Western Pacific that lasts about 8 months give or take a bit. My brothers joined him for a tiger cruise from Hawaii to California.

Below is the McKee. Jim is or was a plank owner of this ship. That means he was a member on the original crew. He became a chief while serving here.

Jim served on the Henry B. Wilson in the 1980's. I got to go on a one day dependents cruise on this ship and even sit in the captain's chair on the bridge for awhile at the captain's invitation. I guess that chair is kind of a sacred place so the invitation was unusual.

The last ship in Jim's career was the Duluth. Our son was able to join his dad on a tiger cruise on this ship. Jim served as Command Master Chief and he retired from the Navy in a ceremony on her deck after 20 years, 3 months and 1 day.

To my husband and hero, thank you for your service. To all who have served or are serving in any branch thank you.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Weekend Work

We got carpet in what has become a guest bedroom rather than DH's home office. We moved a lot of furniture around and exposed a lot of dust bunnies. We are getting ready for visiting family this holiday season. I wish they were as cute as this one from Purrfect Knits on Artfire. I would have kept her if that was what I found. So cute!

Friday, November 6, 2009

What Happens?

This is what happens when your DH who obsesses about a green lawn puts down pounds and pounds of winter grass seed on the backyard. He seemed to act as if I should spend my day scaring them away. I would rather take their pictures. The lawn will be fine. I am sure of that.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

What's New Today?

I have made it a policy of not putting the same item on multiple sites. I know it is not as if the world of online shoppers is causing servers to crash with traffic to my shops. I just never wanted to be in the embarrassing situation of having to tell someone that the item they wanted was bought out from under them at another site.

Rather than waiting for things to expire I have started moving off of Silkfair. With all my days interruptions I got two things moved. Now available in A Cozy Life on ArtFire are a scarf in shaded blues and a headband that has colors that I really love.

For the scarf I used a shaded yarn that goes from deep indigo to a cool icy blue. For visual interest I created a pattern that angles the colors at the ends.

I can't help myself. I love calico prints. I think the turquoise crocheted edging makes a pretty frame for this fabric.

As I keep going with this process I will keep you posted right here.

Why Artfire?

I left Artfire almost 2 years ago now. The attitudes and feeling on the site changed so much I just did not want to be a part of the site anymore. I have a presence on Etsy again and while not perfect I know what to expect.

I started selling at craft fairs nearly 30 years ago. I remember the first one I sold at. I wasn't there but it was exciting anyway. My neighbor's mother was part of a church bazaar in another state and the two of us made some things to send to her. After that I started looking for shows around where I was living. Let's just say the holiday season was a very busy one for me for many years in San Diego and the in the Salt Lake City area. Actually because most of what I was doing was thread crochet Christmas ornaments I really got busy about May or June to have enough things made for the shows.

With the coming of the internet I was so excited. Ecommerce was a way out of all the lugging of displays around, packing and unpacking products and weekends away from home. I knew it would happen and I started watching. The first internet craft malls seemed too complicated and expensive and then I stumbled on a blog mention of a place called Etsy in 2005 which was right after startup. I was over the moon excited. As a concept it is still a great place but not, I have come to realize, necessarily for a more traditional crafter like me. This post isn't about that debate though. I have closed my shop on Etsy with no hard feelings because I was looking for a better fit for me at a cost structure I could sustain as a long term dedicated hobbyist.

I did go with the "don't put your eggs all in one basket" approach for awhile. Actually a couple years worth of wasting time doing a little here and a little there. I have had accounts on Shop Handmade, Ecrater, Blujay, Mintd, Lovli and Silkfair as well as the big orange E never quite finding a good fit and realizing something very important about my own way of doing things. Being in so many places even if not all at once was too distracting and everything was only half done and poorly at that. My baskets only had a couple eggs in each and what I really needed was a full, well done basket somewhere.

Along came ArtFire and I liked what I saw. I read about the background of John Jacobs, the founder, and discovered a background of understanding for crafters and the struggles to sell their goods. I hope that I have found a place to fill a basket of my goods and find folks who would like to have them.
Finally, the term handmade as a trend is on the decline. But arts and crafts, artisans, the creative entrepreneur are so much bigger than a trend. We intentionally created artfire not to be a flash in the pan trend based business. Craft shows, art fairs, and the sale of handmade goods is a strong and long-time market. My posting of the google trend is to demonstrate that the handmade trend (the resurgence of handmade as a fashion trend based concept) may not be the buoy that some think in the marketplace. There is a deeper, more longstanding, more traditional market here that is not focused on the fashion trend only. I think that makes for a more stable and long-term marketplace.

I found the above quote in the ArtFire Forums today. The discussion this is part of is generating a lot of interest as the community sorts its way through how they feel about the evolving site. For me if the focus stays on the last two sentences I am staying here and hoping that what happens for me is good. I try to make traditional, useful things that help make life cozy. As I said before I have been doing it for nearly 30 years and I don't know how and don't want to stop.

If you are a crafter, artisan or artist and this sounds like a place for you I would be honored if you would use my referral link if you sign up for an account.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

New Look

I got my new monitor yesterday. It is amazing how good things look when you are seeing an image without a yellow haze over it most of the time. To celebrate my new colorful online world I made a new banner for my blogs and artfire shop.

The picture above was taken in Portland Oregon on a vacation there. I have forgotten the name of the house. It was once owned by the newspaper owner there and has been lovingly restored. Even in the days when it was built the home owners must have had beautiful views of the city as you can see below.

For my new banners I used one of the interior rooms in this house. I was born about 100 years too late to live in a place like this. I will admit that the odds are I would most likely have worked there rather than lived there. Oh well. Can't fix either one of those things.

Do you think you would have liked to live in another era?
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