Saturday, January 21, 2012

why etsy is my favorite place to shop

As you know, we have an online shop. This post is not about that. This post is about the wonderful world of Etsy. In case you don't know, Etsy is a tiny village at the North Pole where little elves make...wait. No, that's Santa's workshop. Etsy is kind of like that, but instead of elves, actual people make things by hand, and via the magical internet (and my credit card), send them to my door.
Exhibit A:

I found these adorable mugs on Etsy. Truth be told, I probably didn't need mugs. But I didn't not need them either. And once I found them I had to have them. While I fully endorse buying local and shopping farmers markets and craft fairs, sometimes the thing you want isn't right where you are. The maker of my mugs lives in Jonesboro, Indiana. I also learned (via her Etsy shop) that her name is Audrey, she just had her first son, and she graduated from Taylor University with a major in Studio Art. And she didn't have 4 of these available in her shop, so she made them for us.

I happen to be the kind of person that finds this stuff interesting. Which is why I love buying things on Etsy. Every shop owner has a story that you can read right on their shop site. Every time I get something from an etsy shop I am pleasantly surprised. My mugs came individually gift wrapped, well protected, and ready to send (in this case these were a gift for me and Justin. From me.)

So next time you are looking for a gift for yourself or someone else check out Each shop is individually "owned" so when you type in a search phrase hundreds of different shops might have what you are looking for. It's sort of like window shopping, and when you click a specific item, it's like walking into the shop. You can check out what else they have there, or you can go back out and look at all the shops again.

These are some earrings I purchased a while back from Mu-Yin Jewelry when I was searching for "silver hoops." I bought the small ones and they're great.

And here are some more shops I have purchased from, to give you a start:

Have fun! One thing I really like about Etsy, is that once you create a profile, you can mark items as your "favorite" so if you find a good gift but aren't ready to buy you can come back later and find your favorites easily. (You just click the heart at the top left corner of the image). I cannot be held responsible for all the money you spend on adorable things. But if you want to thank me for making your gift shopping super easy, you can send me presents.

One more note: This is not a paid endorsement by Back Creek Pottery or any other shop I mentioned. I just really happen to like these shops and I have had good experiences with them in the past. Also, many of you probably have known about Etsy for a while, but every now and then I get asked what Etsy is when I tell someone about our online shop. I'm a big fan of Etsy in general. The end.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Flashback to the holidays

I have recently come to realize two things: 1) I take a lot of pictures. 2) My window to post Christmas vacation photos has pretty much passed. So here's the summary:

We had a fantastic Christmas week with my family. Justin, Jasper and I drove down in two days and perfect conditions: zero rain, no fog, no traffic jams. It was sunny and 60s the whole time. Almost bizarre, really. I don't really remember spending December in the sun.

I got lots of Auntie time with Avery, Nolan, and Siddori. Lots and lots of photos. I can't get enough of their cute faces. Opening presents was absolute chaos. Nolan never stops moving. And Avery never stops evading Nolan. And Siddori never stops smiling.

I also got to squeeze in some "honorary Auntie" time with Kate and Holly too (Kim, your kids are adorable). Favorite moment:

Me: So, Kim, what are Kate & Holly's favorite things right now?
Kim: That is the only outfit that Kate wears. Ever. (Kate grins). And Holly...(looks over at Holly who has managed, in the 3 seconds we were not looking, to dump a condiment cup full of ketchup all over her face)...Holly likes ketchup.

Then we drove to the Bay Area and got to hang out with one of my favorite human beings in the universe. And eat delicious sushi. And go wine tasting. So great.

Then we hit the beautiful Oregon coast. We cut off of I-5 just south of Roseburg and stayed in Bandon for New Year's Eve. What a great little tiny town. The next day we continued up the coast, stopping and marveling along the way, and stayed in Newport. I think I could have spent at least 2 more weeks camped out in our ocean view hotel rooms. I love the Pacific Northwest coast in the winter.

And now we're back to lovely (read: damp, cold, dark) Puget Sound. If anyone has a charming little vacation home in a sunny clime they'd like me to go check on I'd be happy to oblige.

You can see more road trip photos here.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Refresh: Hello 2012

I know. That was so last week.

I'm still getting re-acclimated to rainy Seattle weather after glorious 60 degree California and the Oregon coast, and editing my way through the photos. I intend to bombard you with pictures shortly. Maybe not all 500 (seriously-- this is what owning a digital camera has done to me), but way too many, I assure you.