Sadly Nanna and Grandpa Hairy Pig's (no, i'm not joking about the name - he chose it!) obnoxiously bad tempered cockatiel snuffed it sometime last night thus halting his reign of expletives without launching into another decade.
Beautiful to look at, a peril to hold, this bird has never forgiven me for clipping its nails once a long time ago. All efforts for friendship were snubbed by him spitting, sneezing and hissing at me.
Dad will miss him.
... and Nanna didn't even spot he was an ex-parrot when she took the cover off his cage this morning.
Thursday, December 31, 2009
Sadly Nanna and Grandpa Hairy Pig's (no, i'm not joking about the name - he chose it!) obnoxiously bad tempered cockatiel snuffed it sometime last night thus halting his reign of expletives without launching into another decade.
Sunday, December 27, 2009
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
Monday, December 14, 2009
Phew! It's the end of craft fair season for me and I'm taking a break from prepping inventory for a while. I can close down the merchant account to reduce my overheads and, once christmas is done, steel myself to approaching some bricks and mortars to see if anyone else would like to carry ebb and flo goodies.
Since I'm not really one to trumpet my own assets (but I can mix my metaphors) this will be a real test of courage for me. I got some great tips while on the craft fair circuit so I shall follow up these leads in the New Year.
Good news though! Several of my brooches are now in new hands. Somehow these little items are like babies to me. I don't make them very often, and only when really inspired. I can feel the brooch mojo still working so I shall "reward" myself with making a few more. Marshmallow Hearts, as shown above though is still looking for a new home. Please apply within ........
Sunday, December 13, 2009
one of the very best things about a two-day craft market is that there is no take down on day one and no set up on day two.
this translates into a leisurely evening meal on the first day followed by homebaked cinnamon buns for breakfast on the second day.
almost enough compensation for saturday being an incredibly quiet selling day!
come down and sample the handmade delights of Portobello West at the Rocky Mountaineer station on Cottrell Street, 12 noon to 6pm today.
remember - it's time to buy your handmade christmas gifts (hint, hint)
Tuesday, December 01, 2009
"After nearly 3 years of hard work we are so very happy to announce that We Feel Fine: An Almanac of Human Emotion is in stores starting today. "
My blogpost and pic were pulled by the We Feel Fine webcrawler looking for people blogging about their emotions. I gave my permission to include the image in the book in preparation, and now it's finally available! Click here to view "my" page!
Monday, November 30, 2009
Over the last 24 hours I have made almost 30 of these delicate little flowers.
Tomorrow I will spend wiring them onto chain or making them into earrings.
..... and then I want to do something completely different!
Thursday, November 26, 2009
Making more of these today - it's been a while since I tackled some new cufflinks but I'm finding the wire wrapping strangely satisfying after spending so long on crocheting with it.
Even the sawing of chain links is going well enough.
Anyways, all you local ebb and flo fans - see you at Dunbar Community Centre this Saturday for the bumper craft fair (see links on left for details).
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
a bubble of craftivity right now.
check out the craft fair list to the left and come see me at Dunbar Community Centre on Saturday. There are lots of new ebbandflo goodies available!
Monday, November 23, 2009
a new direction for me - drilling seaglass
sterling silver bail, handforged by me (yup, got the blow torch out of mothballs)
genuine scottish sea glass, gathered on my last holiday
Saturday, November 14, 2009
Like many stay-at-home mums, my life was completely different pre-child. For one thing, I had a career which delivered a regular salary cheque into my bank account. I was thus financially independent of my spouse and, once the joint responsibilities were taken care of, could do whatever I wanted to with My money.
Not so these days. Although the joint account is technically Our money there is still the emotional hurdle that it is my husband who is earning the dosh which lands every two weeks or so. And since I'm the one in charge of the household budget I know exactly how good or bad our finances are doing at any one time.
In life pre-child my interaction with my community could be summarised by "open wallet, put cash in the collecting tin". Not so these days as our family 'runs' on a single income and has to be budgeted tightly. But I still like to contribute to the community, and this translates into volunteering my time.
Time is very precious to me these days. As a mother and housewife personal time is generally in short supply. I'm also trying to run a modest home business in, around and in spite of my family. My personal time gets carved up and squeezed into odd moments throughout the day (and into the night).
So this is what faced me when i walked in from my meeting one evening.
I volunteer on a local non-profit board of directors. Tuesdays are a "leetle beet" rushed since the wee guy has piano lessons late afternoon. I had scurried to prepare a nutritious meal for my family and then sped out of the door to my meeting. I was gone for about two hours. When i got back all the detritus from the meal and prep was still cluttering up the sink and counter with my husband calmly getting on with some 'real work' on his laptop.
Gee, thanks for helping me volunteer in the community.
file under: selflessness, respect (lack of)
Sunday, November 08, 2009
Today I delivered my goodies to two christmas boutiques (details in the left sidebar on this blog) at Port Moody Arts Centre and Place des Arts in Coquitlam.
Phew! Now that those deadlines have been completed I have a small breathing space to package up gifts for overseas then reward myself with a special crafty project or two.
Hmmm? Think I'll crochet some bases for some more mini art brooches for my scarves and try a bit of needlefelting.
Saturday, November 07, 2009
Monday, November 02, 2009
Not blogging much cos I'm getting into a fug about prepping inventory for Christmas (which means I shouldn't really be blogging right now). The red mist of panic is descending and somehow my diary seems chock full this week. Delivery deadlines for the two christmas boutiques is this weekend!
Ooops! I need some motivational propjects to calm my mind - perhaps these Christmas snowflakes might be the thing?
Saturday, October 17, 2009
selection of ebb and flo jewelry available in the Place des Arts shop
It's that time of year again! A time for feverish activity prepping inventory for the christmas boutiques and craft fairs. I arrived home with 200 feet of argentium wire for crochet and my desk is spilling over with bead soups in the making.
The shop at Place des Arts in Coquitlam will be re-stocked as a Christmas boutique for opening on November 12th. This means a compelte change over for all my stock so if there's something you've had your eye on this might be the last chance to see/buy in the V3H ....
Please check out the slide show above.
Thursday, October 15, 2009
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
OK, not bog soup but a soupy hint nonetheless.
Hands up who ends up with leftover roasted veggies from the sunday dinner? What happens to them?
Am I guessing garbage?
Well, no more! SImply liquidise/blend the leftovers with some stock and voila! roasted veg soup ..... in an instant.
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
black wire crochet spooktacular earrings from ebbandflo
Meh! We 'did' the pumpkin patch yesterday, finished off the Thanksgiving dinner so I guess today it's time to get with it for Halloween.
I'm planning some nice gothic pieces in black wire for autumn/winter anyway but these polymer clay eyeballs (from valeriebeads) just screamed "use me!" from my bead box.
so i did!
Sunday, October 11, 2009
Happy Thanksgiving - it's my first as a Canadian so yes, we'll be doing the pumpkin, sweet potato stuff etc (but i do draw the line at turkey).
BTW, about turkey - local readers might like to know that Thrifty Foods at Suter Brook will take christmas orders for turkey and have it available for pick up prior to christmas. This solves my traditional "racing around for the christmas bird" dilemma.
.... but back to thanksgiving. It might be a family occasion but I would quite like mine out of the house for a while so I can finish the housework. Also, since no close family are nearby, we haven't been riven with arguments over whose Thanksgiving dinner(s) we should attend. That doesn't seem to be quite such a brilliant part of the tradition, eh?
.... and we're importing family this year for christmas.
voila! problem solved
PS: i'll be out and about (or oot and aboot) looking for maple leaves to clad in fine silver again - tis the season for maple leaf painting)
Thursday, October 08, 2009
my own copper beachcomber
a great wardrobe staple which fits equally well with open necklines and turtle neck tops
Behold! I have listed new beachcomber necklaces on Etsy thus breaking my summer silence.
Beachcombers are inspired by the ocean, they are nets full of beautiful sunken treasure brought to the surface. They fit right in with this season's trend to bold statement bib necklaces and satisfy the OOAK craving for uniqueness. No two beachcombers will look alike and no placement of beads will mirror another.
Tuesday, October 06, 2009
We drove up after school on Friday, unpacked and then went for an 'upside down' dinner, ie. dessert first, courtesy of Cows Ice Cream.
The next morning, following a leisurely breakfast over Treehouse in PJ's, we took our Tree Tops Trek along suspended walkways thru temperate rainforest alongside Fitzsimmons Creek at the base of Blackcomb . (Many thanks to Vera for her excellent guiding, and being sensitive to the fears of her junior guest viz. being eaten by cougars). In the afternoon we took the Whistler Gondola to the new Peak to Peak cable car which links the two mountains in 11 minutes of a smooth and not-at-all white knuckle ride. Hint: choose one of the silver cars for a glass floored viewing experience.
What a wonderful weekend! :) and what a total step out my personal comfort zone!
Last year I wrestled with some tough decisions regarding genetic testing for a particularly nasty hereditary syndrome. Lynch Syndrome would have guaranteed me, at best, losing significant internal organs, or at worst dying prematurely from cancer. There's nothing quite like the threat of imminent demise to make you take stock of life. I was no exception - see below for mine;
- I could have passed faulty genes on to the Wee Guy.
- As a relatively mature mummy (in age, not outlook), the 15 years or so left for me with the Wee Guy would IMO not see him comfortably into adulthood.
- I had been wasting a lot of time waiting to do things as a couple and thereby missed a lot of incredible life opportunities.
'Out' with the waiting around for other people in my life and 'in' with taking responsibility for seizing my day. As a part of a couple it had been much easier to sit back and wait to do things 'together' but it's also more difficult to motivate for two on a constant basis. What should be a pleasure soon becomes another resented item on the never-ending spousal 'to do' list. No more procrastinating! No more opportunities missed! No more hanging around for the knight on the white charger .... and no more second best either.
It might only have been a weekend break but I discovered that I can still make my own spontaneous moments (after all these years), I am (still) brave and resourceful, and I (finally) don't have to wait for someone else.
Henceforth I will be a blur of opportunity-seizing action (!)
PS: the test results were negative :)
Sunday, October 04, 2009
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
The market, in a fully accessible venue, runs from 11am to 4pm and features some of the cream of Vancouver indie crafters.
I have some new scarves and brooches on the table plus some old fave wire crochet designs.
So come out and shop for Fall!
Remember to bring cash (entry is $2, sorry but no credit card sales this time) and spare for the raffle to win a basket of handmade goodies.
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
Almost out of the jet lag, though early nights are still blissful.
Trying to get back into the swing of things.
I will be at the I Heart Crafts market on Saturday 26th September (at the WISE Hall on Adanac - 11am to 4pm) so this week I am mostly finishing up brooches for the scarves I knitted/crocheted while on holiday. Just the ticket for cooler Fall mornings I think.
I'm also prepping some promo pieces for upcoming classes at
So this week's a bit of a whizz! Next week life will be at a slower pace (phew), allowing me ample time to clear the clutter in my studio (urg) and to get around to replacing sold items.
Stay tuned (as always!)
Thursday, September 17, 2009
... and hello canada!
Yes, we're back.
Yes, mixed feelings about being home.
Yes, planning the next escape back to Scotland.
Yes, it's not soon enough so instead we're importing our own wee bit of scottishness in the shape of the divine Aunty B for christmas.
... only 90 sleeps away peeps! :)
Thursday, August 27, 2009
It's an amazing holiday!
On Sunday Wee Guy and I were guests of lil sis on board the Forth Circle steam special from SPRS, steam-hauled by A4 class 60009 Union of South Africa. What a great time - I'll let the slideshow and movies do the talking .... er, make that the whistling.
Sunday, August 23, 2009
It was a lovely day yesterday, sunny so we spent the morning on the beach and then lurked around the garden. As you can see, it's an excellent place to lurk around.
.... and if anyone wonders where I get myinspiration from just check out the slideshow - this is where I grew up.
Friday, August 21, 2009
What to do, what to do!
Well, there's the upcoming Teachers and Staff exhibition at Place des Arts in Coquitlam to go see. Unfortunately I'll miss the opening night reception on September 10th but I'll most certainly make a point of visiting.
Yes, I do have a couple of pieces on show (a 'moss' flotsam set) and yes, that is my wire cuff on the invite!!!
Thursday, August 20, 2009
Sunday, August 16, 2009
is it just me or does everyone lose track of the days while on vacation?
since i last blogged we've visited a maize maze, a safari park in the rain, had movie night and taken a train trip to edinburgh.
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
Yesterday we climbed all 146 steps to the top of the Wallace Monument.
Today we kept things a little more horizontal and went for a stroll around the boardwalk on Flanders Moss.
Flanders Moss is the largest raised bog in the UK, a remnant of the great Forth Valley bog which existed from the last Ice Age and still contains evidence of the last tsunami to hit Scotland!
It was chucking it down with rain on the morning we visited this damp bit of Scotland's natural history - how fitting (and not that typical weather-wise recently).
Sunday, August 09, 2009
As with all holidays 'back home' the wee guy and I are on the move again, back to stay with the amazing Aunty B after almost a week of impressive summer weather at the beach.
But before we left Aberdour, the two of us (B and I) managed a night out 'on the town'. We went out to see a band, The Gillyflowers play in the institute where over 30 years ago we had taken ballet lessons! It was a great evening. Grandpa and Nana put the wee guy to bed while we shed a few years listening to music that was a little bit Siouxsie, a little bit country, a little bit The Skids and had a great time out.
I don't often play my iPod - being deaf in one ear cuts down the times I can safely immerse myself in solo listening pleasure - so imagine my surprise when random track nmber one was this one.
It's a great track, one of my favourites but not my absolute.
This is the one. Enjoy!
Saturday, August 08, 2009
Today was sandcastle competition day in Aberdour. We took part, built a beautiful sandcastle and decorated it in sea coal.
Sadly we did not win but, as we reminded a tearful wee guy, it's the taking part and enjoying yourself which matters.
Cheered ourselves up greatly with millionaire shortbread and smoked salmon burgers from the caterers at the festival.
Regatta and raft race this afternoon so we might be back down at the beach again soon!
More of our scottish summer holiday pics here http://www.flickr.com/photos/pomomama/sets/72157621761536631/
Wednesday, August 05, 2009
We're thru in Aberdour now in time for the last few days of the festival. Not sure how the exposure meter has cooked this pic of the beach - it looks v atmospheric but the weather was actually warm enough to paddle in the sea.
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
After what seems like a whirlwind of a summer already, the Wee Guy and I are finally in Scotland on holiday. So far we've been to day camp, been to and taught at art camp, sailed at sailing camp and enjoyed the PNE .... and there's still almost two months of summer vacation ahead.
And yes, I did complete my 32 day design-a-day challenge before flying off.
Saturday, July 18, 2009
Yes, I appear to have fallen off the blogging bandwagon again. There are only so many hours in a day and the Wee Guy takes up most of them. Yesterday I managed to cram in an exciting scrubbing of all toilets in the house (there are four, all encrusted with missed jets of urine from the outwardly plumbed members of the household!).
But, for those of you struggling with an artist statement (yes, that includes me too today) try these links for some inspiration and some fun.
Tuesday, July 14, 2009
some of Vancouver's finest!
Another exciting Vancouver craft moment following hard on the heels of Andrea and Rob's Got Craft premier of Faythe Levine's Handmade Nation last week.
Etsy (Anda, Maria and Matt) will be hosting a meet and greet this evening - see you there!
PS: hoping there will be more than myself and the lovely Smeeta at this Vancouver sellers meet up! (not that Smeeta isn't great company for coffee!)
Monday, July 13, 2009
.... but no one's noticed round here!
Since I'm allergic to the hoppy fuzzy things we are all about the guinea pig at home otehrwise I'd be a constant wheezy, lacrimose wreck (rather than a seasonal wheezy, lacrimose wreck - fie on you, hayfever!).
So here's a cute guin pic to celebrate bunny week.
Thursday, July 09, 2009
Faythe Levine's documentary, Handmade Nation is screening tonight in Vancouver (check out my previous blog post here for a sneak peek).
Andrea and Rob, the amazing Got Craft dynamic duo have also arranged for an artisan market showcasing local designers and their wares. It will be anexciting night, with the film maker in attendance for a Q&A session at the end.
... ahem (nervous cough) - I'll be there too with my ebbandflo goodies, including the new daisy chain seen above. It's an opera-length necklace of blue Czech glass pearls nestled in handmade wire crochet flower petals. It's a little bit delicate, a little bit summery and a very much girly girly.
I'd love someone to come test drive it for me!
PS: there's a version with gold flowers around too!
Wednesday, July 08, 2009
Yes, you read it right! Etsy (Matt, Maria and Anda) is visiting Vancouver.
Luckily the team forum is up and running so gathering suggestions on where to visit, where to meet and what to see was indeed a cinch thanks to the helpful sellers featured above (and more!).
So Vancouver Etsy sellers - put down July 14th in your diary and get thinking up all those burning questions you wanted to ask.
It will also make a great team meet up (and we haven't had one of those in a while).
Tuesday, July 07, 2009
previous encounter with the great uberfood
Yes, it's Chocolate Day - first of many occasions on which an excuse is provided for indulgence. US National Chocolate Day arrives on October 28th but there is also a World Chocolate Day in September.
Although there is, IMHO, no excuse required for having a nibble year round it's a great reassurance that on at least 3 days a year chocolate eating is actually sanctioned.
PS: Wee Guy and I will be making choc chip muffins this evening in celebration.
Monday, July 06, 2009
al fresco kitchen - one stir fry coming up!
Is this the end of portable crafting?
I waved the Wee Guy off on the bus for his first day at camp this morning (it was peeing down with rain of course). He looked tiny as he trotted to the back of the bus under the weight of his huge backpack. Seems like only yesterday that 30 minutes in childminding at the gym was The Big Thing and now I'm waving him off (him = all excited, me = basket case trying not to let him see how emotional this whole deal is to me) for an entire day without me.
The reason I started portable crafting was so that I had something to do in the brief snatches of time when I was ministering to his needs, whether it was at home (crafts needed to be contained and organised) or out in the park (crafts had to be contained and portable).
With him out of the house for an entire day, there is no need for such meticulous portability. I can craft when and where I want to ... and for me my studio is the most handy as all my supplies are here. This week is just a taster of the freedom that fulltime school will bring in the Fall.
But I'm used to it now. Knitting in public or crocheting with wire at the local coffee shop hold no terrors for me. I enjoy meeting the stares and explaining what I am doing. I've met some interesting people and had inspiring conversations.
You will still see me crafting portably around Tri City long after the need has evaportated!
PS: Yes, I wept like a baby when I got home after this morning's drop off.
Sunday, July 05, 2009
simple glass and amethyst pendant on sterling silver and ribbon
After my tent blew away I'm sticking to indoor vending for a while. You can catch ebb and flo goodies next at the Vancouver premier of Handmade Nation hosted by Got Craft at the Rio Theatre on Broadway at Commercial on July 9th.
See you there!
Saturday, July 04, 2009
handmade supplies from the Etsy Supplies - Handmade by the Seller flickr group
In honour of "fish are friends not food week" - get crafting, not netting!
Friday, July 03, 2009
Suddenly, it seems, this blog has a number of followers. Thank you and welcome. I'm trying to keep up with an interesting blog schedule but as you've no doubt notice Life Occasionally Gets In The Way.
I thought I'd start saying howdy to some of you brave souls who publicly acknowledge they read my blog entries, and first up is my lil' sis. She's known as Honeybeedz in the Etsy community and lives back in the country of my birth (so I don't see her very often :( ). But she does blog ..... occasionally ...... so I can (occasionally) find out what she's been up to. She does amazing bead weaves, sea glass wiring and celtic knotting, all of which is genuinely scottish. What she doesn't do is blog at length.