Monday, February 28, 2011


(borrowed from Maya*Made)
My dear friend is the publicist for this wonderful new book called THE RIGHT-BRAIN BUSINESS PLAN by Jennifer Lee. I have always been turned off by the idea of reading a business book because they are always so dry and boring. I fall asleep before I get through the introduction. That's why I was so excited to see this book! Lee appeals to those of who are working on promoting their creative-based business.  It is visually interesting and easy to understand. Although I don't have a creative business, I did find a lot of interesting ideas about focusing my ideas about what I am currently working on and where I might want to go in the future.

But you don't have to take my word for it.

See what the wonderful and fabulous Maya of Maya*Made has to say about this book. Plus, she is hosting a giveaway!!!!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Inspired Ideas

I have been a fan of Amy Powers' Inspired Ideas for a long time. Her new issues are absolutely glorious!  So much inspiration and creativity.  I subscribed to the new issue immediately and now I have to decide which project to tackle first.  I really love these bunnies by Charlotte Lyons:

I've never played with celluclay before and this make be the perfect opportunity.  There are so many other projects to try.  Lots of wonderful things for a bargain price of $3.30!  Even an original Mary Engelbreit project! Find previews of the projects here.

Get your own digital copy here.

I can't wait to see what the next issue brings!!!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Mrs. Grossman's---Another Reason to Come to Petaluma

Here is another item in my series on Petaluma that I am using to entice you to come to the West Coast ART IS YOU retreat this Fall!!!

When I was a child back in the 80's in Texas, I was part of the sticker collecting craze. I especially loved collecting Mrs. Grossman's stickers because they had such simple but whimsical designs.  Her most famous (and first) design is this heart:

Little did I know it but my life path would bring me even closer to Mrs. Grossman's many years later.  When I moved to Petaluma in 2006, I was amazed to find out that Petaluma is the home of Mrs. Grossman's sticker factory!!!  One of the first things I did was to take a factory tour. It was so fun!!! For $3, I got to tour the factory, do a craft activity and get a $3 certificate good in the factory store.  And Mrs. Grossman's also has biannual warehouse sales which are just too tempting.

If you make it to Petaluma this Fall, I highly recommend the factory tour.   I might even have to join you.

(image borrowed from Mrs. Grossman's)

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Celebrate the Boy Month!!!

First of all, here is the photo I got as a Valentine's present:

I have some pretty great Valentines, huh?

I am also excited because today begins CELEBRATE THE BOY month at two of my favorite blogs:

I loved this series of tutorials for boys on Dana Made It and Made by Rae last year and I'm so excited they decided to do it again!!! It is so nice to have some great tutorials for boys. I may have to stop by the fabric store today and get supplies to make Dana's easy pants for boys. And check out Rae's dragon slippers. TOO CUTE!!!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Valentine's Treat

Here are the treats I made for Noodlebug to take for his preschool class. The little Valentine's tags were free from Vistaprint.

Just something small but I hope it brightens everyone's day.

Unfortunately, these little treats caused a huge fight with my husband who felt I was wasting my time. It's funny how the smallest things can cause the biggest fights.

Not really in a Valentine's mood but I am wishing you all lots of love....

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Catching Up

Well, like so many of you, we have illness in our household. Noodlebug has a fever, a cough and is throwing up.  My poor baby!!!  Still, he remains very sweet in spite of his illness.

Here is a much-delayed photo of him in the pajama pants I made. I don't know why but he looks about 10 years old in this photo:

I'll post info on the pattern later but I think it was an easy Simplicity pattern with an elastic waist.

Here are some quick and easy Valentine bags I did using Jenny's great tutorial:

(Again with the sideways photos!!! i don't know why this happens!!!)

I will definitely be making more of these tote bags. Fast and easy!!!!

And here is a photo of Noodlebug and his Grandma (he calls her Tutu) at our local children's museum:

He has been taking Messy Art classes there for about a year.  When we first started, he wanted nothing to do with the paint. He was afraid to put his hands in it and wouldn't even consider his feet. Now, he has no problem getting messy.  And it makes me happy because kids SHOULD get messy!  Especially when being creative.

Happy Wednesday!!!

Monday, February 7, 2011

One of Those Days

Some days I am a grouchy ladybug.  Today is one of those days. 

Noodlebug is sick again.  We had one week of health and now we are back to nebulizer treatments.

I have five cavities that are going to be filled this afternoon. I'm still not sure how I am going to pay for the part of the treatment that insurance doesn't cover.

I am woefully behind on Valentine's projects and the holiday is on Monday.

I have an out-of-town guest coming on Wednesday and my house still looks like a haunted house complete with cobwebs and dust.

I burned my tongue on my hot tea.


Still, the sun is shining and we can expect temperatures in the mid-seventies today. Not a total loss.

Friday, February 4, 2011

The Truth about BidRack *UPDATED*

**UPDATE #3**
It has been several months since I posted about this site but I have been reading all of your comments.   I know some of you claim to have had good experiences with this site and others have just joined and are excited about getting great bargains in a penny auction.

There is no such thing as a penny auction.

Bidrack is constantly changing its policies but generally each bid (if you buy a bid package) costs you anywhere from 50 cents to $1. Every time you "bid" a penny on an item, you are spending at least 50 cents. As one astute commenter pointed out, this means that an iPad that goes for $150 is really being sold for 15,000 bids or approximately $7500.  Not a bad deal for Bidrack. Even if some of those were free bids given to bidders. To have them claim they cannot fulfill an order after making this kind of profit is ludicrous. You shouldn't believe it and you shouldn't take anything less than the item you bid on.

It has been made clear time and again that the big auctions are rigged.  I have only ever had one commenter claim to win an iPad.  Everyone other winner seems to win cheap handbags, jewelry and other items that I'm sure are knockoffs and cheaply made.  I never hear of people winning high-end items like Louis Vuitton bags and actually getting them.

Bidrack is genius in that they tend to substitute items and then offer you free bids in order to placate you. These free bids will help to drive up the selling price of an item and, therefore, Bidrack's profit.

If you are happy winning cheap items that are probably worth less than what you pay for shipping then you will probably be happy with this site.  Otherwise, I still say Buyer Beware.

**UPDATE #2**  I checked my credit card account this morning (3/21/11) and BidRack did indeed credit back all my money. I never won a single thing on BidRack and they refunded all my money for the bid package. So, I didn't end up losing anything but it was certainly a disappointing experience. Please read through all the comments to see the experience of others.

**UPDATE**  Since I first posted this, there have been many negative changes to BidRack.  They have altered their policies and many people have not received any of the the auction items they "won." Please take some time to read through the comments on this post.  Personally, I contacted BidRack to ask for a full refund and to shut down my account.  They responded within hours and refunded my money entirely.  I never won a single auction.

I have been seeing lots of buzz about the new auction site called BidRack and thought I'd check it out. First of all, I find it suspicious that they would need to falsify testimonials.  That is never a good sign. Still, I'm a woman who loves a bargain and I'm a reformed eBay addict so I thought I would look into BidRack a bit further.

First of all, you have to buy bids.  For $60, you can get 120 bids.  So each bid costs you about 50 cents. When you use your bids, you are raising the purchase price by 1 cent.  If you choose to do this, do NOT bid on any items until the last fifteen seconds. Otherwise, you are just throwing your bid away.  Most of the action is in the last fifteen seconds.  Every time someone bids in the last fifteen seconds, the timer goes back to 00:15.  So, it can be the last fifteen seconds for A LONG TIME.   The idea behind this website is that every bid increases the price by one penny.  Whoever places the last bid before the timer runs out gets to purchase the item at the final price. So, theoretically, you can get an iPad for a fraction of the price.


You do not get back the bids that you throw away use on an auction.  The site claims that you can apply what you spent in bids towards the full retail price of the item if you lose.  So, here is what you have to do.  Let's say you are bidding on an iPad which retails at around $500. You spent $60 on bids and you want to aim for buying the iPad at no more than $250.  So, you should stop bidding at around $190 if you don't want to go over your limit.  You may run out of bids before it hits this price.  Or the timer could run out. I suppose if you used all your bids and lose, they would offer the iPad to you for $440.  Whoopee.

I'm not sure this whole thing is a good deal and I'm not even sure it isn't a scam. It seems like a giant time and money suck.  If I find out differently, I'll let you know. But for now I am labeling this service "buyer beware."