Saturday, September 3, 2011

Board Games Make Me Happy!

Day 3 Blog Challenge Topic: Top 5 Favorite Board Games

My brothers and I LOVE to play board games! We have game nights as often as we can. When we were all local to each other, we'd usually get together once a month or so to play. We all especially seem to be fond of card games.

Monopoly Deal
Texas Hold'em Poker
Trivia Games

Friday, September 2, 2011

Day 2 Blog Challenge

How many languages do you speak?

Californian, West Coast, Cajun, and New York (when I say coffee or bagel) English.

And 2 years in HS and 2 more terms of Spanish in college. I usually listen to comprehend more often than I attempt to speak it. Working in a kitchen in Oregon, many of the crew were Hispanic. The funnest word we said to each other? Vanilla! VaniLa in English is vanEEYa in Spanish. We used to go back and forth until we were both giggling. "Read this word," ~pointing at a jar label~ "Vaneeya" Still makes me smile. That was a fun crew.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Sept 1 - Me and My Day

A photo of myself: I got my hair cut back to short just last week.

Today was my second day of 'training' at the new Wheat Montana Bakery and Deli that's opening at the travel plaza I work at! I bartend on the weekends, and will be adding another shift or two in the deli on campus. It should be fun. We didn't do much learning; we did lots of cleaning, and getting the building ready for final inspection before opening. Tomorrow we start up coffee training (hopefully I can learn Something. I've been through all the the Starbucks training, so I suspect I'll be helping more than learning).

I also got drafts for my new business cards! I recently opened where I've been moving all of my health and fitness items from One side of the card will be dedicated to SC and the other to HH. Here's the draft. Near final. Comments and feedback would be greatly appreciated!

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

September 30 Day Challenge Topics

So, I'm going to give this a shot. Give me something to write about at least once a week with a few things, or a quick jump on and off more regularly. I'm joining Lily of MyHobbyShop (and a fellow crocheter) in a 30 day blog challenge!

Some things I have going on in September include:
*Starting a 2nd job (well started today officially, but the restaurant will be opening in the coming weeks, so we're cleaning and stocking and training for now)
*Turning 27 (on the 24th) the same day that one of my best friends turns 25
*Traveling to Oregon from Montana with my sweetheart to visit my nephew (born July 21) and niece (born June 30) and celebrate my birthday with my family and friends.

Reading over these questions, I look forward to sharing more with you! Come back often this month; it's gonna be a good one. September's my favorite month!


1 A photo of yourself and a description of how your day was
2 How many languages can you speak?
3 Top 5 favorite Board Games
4 Do you believe in soul mates?
5 What is the best piece of advice you've received?
6 Were you ever a boy/girl scout?
7 Summer or Winter?
8 Would you rather be attacked by a big bear or a swarm of a bees?
9 What would you do if you only had 24 hours left to live?
10 What is the first thing you notice about people?
11 Top 5 favorite bloggers you like to read
12 What is your favorite food?
13 Tattoos. If you have one, post it and it’s story. If not, what do you want?
14 What type of music do you like to listen to?
15 Top 5 favorite Sports players (male or female)
16 What is the first think you notice about a guy or girl?
17 What was the last movie you've seen?
18 What was your most recent trip of more than 50 miles?
19 What is your favorite pizza topping?
20 What is the worst thing that happened to you during the past week?
21 What's your favorite Broadway musical?
22 If you only had 24 hours to live, what would you want to do?
23 Who's your favorite Care Bear?
24 What do your parents do for a living?
25 Computer or television?
26 If you could go to Disney World with any celebrity alive today, who would it be?
27 Post one confession/secret
28 Mountain hideaway or beach house?
29 What is on your mouse pad?
30 Hugs or Kisses?

Monday, August 22, 2011

Color Options

These are all of the options I keep in stock.
Most of my listings are in Red Heart Super Saver acrylic,
and the bath items are in Peaches & Cream USA Grown cotton.
Equivalents in color shown at the very bottom.

Last update 07/15/2012

Cherry red
Ranch red
Carrot (dark)
Pumpkin (bright)
Bright yellow
Pastel yellow
Spring green
Medium thyme
Tea leaf
Frosty green
Paddy green
Light blue
Windsor blue
Medium blue
Royal blue
Medium Purple
Dark orchid
Light raspberry
Shocking pink
Baby pink
Heather grey
Light grey
Aran (off white)
Warm Brown

Green tones
Purple tones
Blue tones
Pink tones
Candy print
Bay print

I do not stock these colors, and can only find them seasonally.

Dark Sage

Once I run out of these, I don't plan to restock them at this time except for special orders as available:

Amazon print
Aruba sea
Aspen print
Banana berry
Cherry chip
Cherry cola
French country
Holly & Ivy (VERY limited, out soon!)
Light sage
Painted desert
Peruvian print
Pink camo
Plum pudding
Sandy print
Shaded browns
Shaded dusk
Urban camo
Burgundy, Claret, Ranch Red, Cherry, Carrot, Cornmeal, Bright Yellow
Frosted Green, Tea Leaf, Med Thyme, Dark Sage, Paddy Green, Country Blue, Med Blue, Royal, Teal
Dk Orchid, Shocking Pink, Buff, Cafe, Coffee

A) aruba sea, med blue, bon bon print
B) med purple, white, dark orchid
C) shocking pink, baby pink, light raspberry
D) sunshine, cornmeal (or bright yellow if out of season), pumpkin
E) med purple, lt raspberry, med blue
F) white, dark orchid, shocking pink
G) cornmeal, baby pink, aruba sea

Bright Yellow, Spring Green, Pretty N Pink, Light Blue,
Cherry Red, Turqua, Pumpkin Orange
Aruba Sea, Aran, Dk Orchid, Lt Raspberry,
Windsor Blue, Carrot Orange, Tea Leaf, Teal
Bay Print, Watercolor, Fall, Sandy Print,
Bay Print, Bikini, Candy Print, Marrakesh
Carrot Orange, Frosted Green Fleck, Claret, Ranch Red, Amazon, Burgundy

Melonberry, Baby Pink, Lt Raspberry

Tea Leaf with Hunter, Fall and Coffee Leaves
Marrakesh and Candy Print with Tea Leaf Green

Melonberry with Spring Green, Dk Orchid with Frosted Green Fleck, Amazon with Cafe, Claret with Grey,
Artist Print with Spring Green, Burgundy with Fall, Claret with Frosted Green Fleck
Medium Purple with Hunter, Carrot Orange with Paddy, Cornmeal with Spring Green

    Cool Breeze, Earth Ombre, Green Twists
    Guacamole, Countryside Ombre, Lava Lamp
    Shown best here:

    Bright Pink
    Country red

    Golden yellow
    Light blue
    Hot blue
    Scented lavender
    Warm brown

    Clay - tangerine, tan, white
    Cool breeze - white, pastel green, pastel blue
    Countryside ombre- purple, sage
    Daffodil daze - white, yellow
    Damask ombre - tan, red, pink
    Denim - darker blues
    Earth ombre - browns
    Green twists - green, white throughout yarn
    Guacamole - dusty greens
    Ivy league - white, green, blue
    Mod ombre - white, teal, green
    Moondance- white, purple, blue
    Pink Camo - light pink with a greenish/grey
    Renegade - camo greens
    Shaded denim - light blue, white
    Sonoma print - tan with clay, brown flecks
    Sunshine - pink, orange, yellow
    Swimming pool - turquoise blues
    Violet veil ombre - white, pastel purple, pastel blue, pastel yellow

    Once I run out of these, I don't plan to restock them at this time except for special orders as available
    Barnboard twists
    Field of dreams

    Rose twist

    Lava lamp (they have changed the dyes in this color and it's not nearly so bright and pretty as it used to be)

    Pink, White, Black, Lime, Country Red

    Pink, Tangerine, Hot Blue, Lavander

    Cool Breeze, Lava Lamp, Moondance

    Guacamole, Earth Ombre, Field of Dreams, Barnboard Twist
    Violet Veil Ombre, Lava Lamp, Cool Breeze, Moondance 
    White, Lavender, Orange, Light Blue, Pink

    Tuesday, April 26, 2011

    Trades Make Me Happy

    I am a member of Etsy TradeAHolics and LOVE to trade on Etsy. As my best friend is having a baby girl this summer a few weeks before my brother and his wife are to have a little boy, most of my trades have been for all kinds of awesome baby and new Mom items. Here are some of my favorite items that I've traded for.

    Some of the most recent ones have been just for Me. I got this great little black skirt, that I have worn every day over 50 degrees since I got it. I created a custom yoga mat bag and she's pretty darn happy with it. This picture of her with her new bag made my day!  Troblin sells vintage items, and I got a couple of fun white jackets to wear this summer, too.

    Hopefully my brother and sister in law don't read my blog yet, b/c I've been doing a BIG bundle of felt food for their son to be, Ian. My brother is a chef, and so I thought they should have the best play food around. Being from the Northwest, and enjoying Swedish meatballs so much, I knew they'd appreciate these pieces from Tatestastees which include a fondue set, avocado, salmon steak, and sushi set. The last photo is of two of the scarves in the bundle she received. Mom and Son matching granny length set.

    Some more of my favorite trades included lotion candles from JazzyCustomCreations, and Awesome giant project/shoulder bag and infinity scarves from LoveKnots4Baby, (I've not had it farther than a few feet from me since I got it), and wonderful hibiscus passion body frosting from BubbleTub.

    Some other shops I'd like to mention for you to check out:
    Pugs2Persians: Wonderful shop with high quality leashes, collars, and poo bags.
    TheWeeShelf: Lolo, MT based vintage shop
    HoneyBeeHolistics: Offers lovely soaps, creams, and teas, including a gift set perfect for new Mothers
    LoobieLabels: Where I got these fun baby sock sushi sets
    BetterLifeBags: Customize in the style and fabrics of your choice. Below is most of my set.

    I have gotten many great items, but there are so many wonderful shops in our trading circle that I can't list them all. Please feel free to join us if you have an Etsy shop, and share your handmade items with the world, one shipment at a time.

    Saturday, April 2, 2011

    Appreciated Photos & Feedback

    I love the feedback I get from my wonderful customers! I've recently gotten some great feedback, and a couple of fun appreciation photos that I'd like to share. Two new SC scarf owners. 

    Yane Zwee Lovies

    Here are some of my favorite bits of feedback:
    *"SAM's items are FABULOUS! I have received multiple compliments on the leg warmers she made for me in the specific colors I asked for. She was timely and the stitching detail was intricate and durable. Sam's style is unique and her colors are really great. For example, the purse and yoga blanket she did custom and the amount of time and effort put in to make every detail was inspiring. Two weeks ago Sam made a wonderful baby hat with a snowflake detail on the front. The baby's parents were so pleased and I felt that I had a special "secret" for giving beautiful homemade gifts! If you haven't ordered from Sam's Crochet yet, you really should-you will be so pleased!"
    *"GREAT products here! I have 4-5 scarves, 3 purses and a hat. I have had NO problems with any of them wearing out, or stitches coming out. I LOVE HER WORK!" This one's from my best friend who's been getting my items for more than a decade now.
    *"LOVE my little phone cozy. It's even cuter in person. I loved that I could customize it with my favorite colors. The handiwork is exceptional!"
    *"THANK you so much! I can't wait to take this to the gym, it feels so natural and is just beautiful."
    *"LOVE the hat!!! I'm going to have to share this one with my husband."
    *"GREAT seller, very helpful when choosing your custom item. Nice and great follow up. Very informative with your custom options."
    *"MY bag is Amaaazing! and matching phone case to die for!. Beautifully crocheted. Gorgeous colors. Highly recommended." ~One SC Bag Owner in France
    *"EXCELLENT work, this looks even more beautiful in person with a intricate cable design. I asked for a special color and it shipped so fast! "
    *"THIS is one of the best purses ever! Sam is amazing to deal with. She goes above and beyond to make sure that you have the best experience possible in her shop. I love the large bubble stitch and the cell phone case keeps my phone from being scratched or banged around in my purse... you think of everything! t" This feedback was given by a gal who is soon to be doing a review on my shop and items. Think I'll do alright. :D Looking forward to reading her comments.

    *"I LOVE this item! I use it all the time, it's especially great for during exercise, keeps my unruly hair out of my eyes."
    *"PERFECT fit- looks great with my purple yoga mat. Very happy!"
    *"THIS camera bag is camera is now stylin'"
    *"BEAUTIFUL yoga mat bag! I bought it for my sister (a yoga teacher) and it is perfect! I appreciated the willingness of Sam to arrange a local, in person exchange."
    *"THIS is a great bag, too! My water bottle and kids sippy cups fit perfectly in the compartments and it leaves the center opening a perfect size for snacks. I love the way it hangs comfortably from my shoulder, and the colors go well with everything. Oh, and its reversible, which is awesome."

    About Apple Cozies:
    *Love it! My daughters have stolen mine!
    *Squee!!! I can't wait to get my little apple cozy!
    *This apple is even better in person! I gave to my daughter who is in college to be a school teacher. She was very happy with it. (I almost kept it, it was sooooo well made & nice)
    *We put it on a pear - SO cute!
    *This is so cute! I put an apple in it and sent it in my fiancee's lunch for work today, just love it.
    *The photos don't do the items justice. The colors are so vibrant.
    *Adorable. I wanted to give it away, but I can't part with it. I'll be back for more.
    *these are so great! my kids love them and use them everyday!
    *I am absolutely thrilled with this little apply cozy. Great price, free shipping, super-fast service. I couldn’t be happier! You can’t help but smile when you see it. (Seriously, it’s so cute… it just makes you happy!)
    *Utterly wonderful and just perfectly made. I actually squealed with delight when this arrived! A wonderful and talented Etsy seller.
    *Transaction was FAST, EASY with good communication. Your work is exquisite. The picture doesn't do this Purse justice!!!

    Find some consistencies? All the things that I try my hardest to do best are noticed. Thank you SOOOO much for the support!
    I am Very Proud of the following piece of information. More than 2 years in business and 345 feedbacks as buyer and seller on Etsy, and I've received ZERO neutrals, and ZERO negatives. My 100% positive has no rounding involved. How exciting is that!

    Thursday, March 24, 2011

    Expansion Across the DubDubDub Universe

    Time to expand and see how other sites might work for sales. I've opened the studio on AF, and now I've added a spot on BigCartel and on Storenvy. So far, in the week I've been on these three sites, I personally like Storenvy best! BigCartel is not quite right for my items, and ArtFire just doesn't feel easy to navigate and use.

    I will continue to add listings on Storenvy and wait and see how things go. I am running a special on Storenvy! Yoga20 coupon code gets your 20% off your purchase, and if you give me some feedback about the Storenvy checkout experience, you'll receive a free apple cozy or soap saver in the color scheme of your choice!

    Storenvy allows me to sell an item with all of its options in one listing, so this might be just what I was looking for when I was debating how to reassess my sales of apple cozies. I can set the color of apple and then give options (like sizing in many other online sales) of leaf colors. I am looking forward to seeing if that makes things easier or more difficult to navigate for the customer. I really like the sections layout in Storenvy, too. Haven't hit a limit, nor do I have to leave a listing in just one category. I can leave a custom yoga mat bag in both custom and yoga sections. Love that!

    Thursday, March 17, 2011

    ArtFire Expansion

    As of last night, I am now the proud owner of an ArtFire studio! I will continue to put my own-of-a-kind, ready-to-ship items in my Etsy shop for awhile. I am working on adding all of the custom listings that I have available on Etsy to the Artfire world.

    Today, I also got to join my photographer in a photo session of the apple cozies and a couple other brand new items I'm adding to my shop! A MacBook cover, an infant headband, the kid's argyle beanie I was talking about in previous posts, and the dual EpiPen sling. I'll add some of these photos to my listings and post them here for your enjoyment.

    The new Rapid Cart widget on the right side of my blog allows you to purchase via AF, directly from here. I believe you do need to be logged in to your account on Artfire to make it the true 28 second experience. I'd love to know how easy that process is, so if you see something you love, please don't hesitate to purchase, and let me know how your experience is with the process.

    Monday, March 14, 2011

    Pregnant Shop Sections

    Some of the basic elements of maintaining and growing a small business are keeping on top of sales, and looking into the future to be sure that sales continue. Fresh new items and ways that I can create items that people will continue to use are some things I am always on the look out for

    One main section of this particular thought is that I've always avoided baby items. There are so many Etsians already catering solely to those looking for gifts for baby. Well, now that my brother and his wife as well as my best friend and her husband are pregnant, I've got baby items on my mind. I've been looking for some items that aren't just the basic hats and booties that you imagine your grandmother's grandmother making. Another element I was hoping to keep for this new baby section is that I can use the same acrylic and cotton yarns which I've been using, so that I can offer all the fun colors that I do for the rest of my shop. I found some fun booties that I intend to recreate with permission to sell by Ketzl. (Photo is Ketzl's sample.)There are a few different similar patterns; some with buttons, others with flowers, and I plan to make some in boy color schemes. I have lots of fun buttons to use for these. Those shown are in cotton, so I'll have the same color options as the soap savers.

    Sometime in the future I will be adding a line of children's beanies as well. These will have a space near the brim for interchangable ribbon accents. They will each come with 2-3 ribbons to change out to match outfits and make for a fun item to be able to wear as often as needed. It might also be available in adult sizes (very likely, actually). I know I get to wearing the same warm items all winter and need to change it up a bit without loosing the warmth and comfort of my favorite hat! This brown hat in the center is the sample I've made up for a recent customer, and the first of this interchangeable ribbon style. Ribbon not shown, but I've been stocking up.

    Another section, I intend to adjust/add to my shop soon is bath items. The best workout includes a fabulous shower afterwards, and I hope to offer some of these items. Soap savers are already working their way into my shop. They will be linked to Paula Jean's Garden, who is my photographer, and supplies some gorgeous lavender soap to make even the funkiest gym rat smell humanesque again. I will be adding face scrubbies in the future and am debating some other little items, on a custom order basis.

    At some point in the future, I plan to make up a whole stock of wristbands to share the Many color options available in the Red Heart yarn that I use for most of my items.

    I have also been thinking about reassessing how I sell my apple cozies. I will be making up the cozies and just adding the leaves as I get them stocked up this time. I am thinking about selling them in this manner. Showing all of the apple color options, and the leaf options, and letting the customer choose without all the extra listings. I want to balance between ease in shopping, and option for my customers, and since it'd be lots of work to adjust the listings, it's currently just stewing on the back burner. Please let me know what you think of my upcoming ideas. Would you prefer to build your own apple cozy? Or just pick out the one you see listed already? Maybe a combination or both. Keeping some in stock, ready to go, and giving the option to those who'd like to make up their own ideas?

    Sunday, March 13, 2011

    Working Hard to Keep the Kitten Occupied

    I just got a new kitten a week before the second anniversary of the opening of my shop. I'm now spending the first weeks of my third year in online crochet sales, creating a blog, and trying to keep a baby cat out of my yarn!

    It's great to have all the fans I can get, but Evie isn't much help in keeping me organized as she throws herself around the room in high-speed project-throwing circles. Shortly before she'd worn herself out and these photos were taken, I couldn't keep the apples in a pile!

    Once she calmed down and I had a chance to sit and actually get some work done, I took a break for some photographs, and THEN settled in to finish up the big batch of cozies.

    Thursday, March 10, 2011

    To-Do Lists

    So today is an early one. I've got LOTS on my crochet to-do list this week.

    I am putting together a pack of 42 samples of my apple cozies for one of my Etsy Teams, TradeAHolics. We are all donating samples to send to one another in a Promotional Swap. Thought, it's too late to be involved in this particular trade, there are always many of us on the team to trade with. Join us!

    Then I've got a scarf, a couple of bags, a couple dozen more cozies, a dog sleeping mat, a gingham yoga mat blanket and a couple of new hat styles to create. I get to make a newsboy cap, and a childrens' argyle beanie in the next few weeks. I am looking forward to giving those two hats my own style look. I love how argyle turns out, and I hope I can work out the math for make the hat perfectly on the first try! Or at least without getting too far along to do it too many times before I'm happy. I might try a couple of different styles. One style I am thinking about is a row of diamonds around the band of the hat, and the other is with smaller diamonds that run through more of the hat's entirety.

    Here are some photos of the previous argyle projects I've worked on. The first in green and browns was my first sample piece and the matching hat I attempted (and never finished out of frustration) before I moved on the bigger blue/green yoga mat blanket.

    While I spend the rest of today crocheting apples like there is no tomorrow, I will be thinking about tomorrow, and all of the crocheting I will be doing then too! I'll sit down soon and do the math for this fun little hat, and I'll be sure to show off the results in the coming weeks!

    Recently, I've taken to creating to-do lists for everything. I've got a crochet project to-do list, a what to list on my Etsy list, what paperwork I need to update, and I feel like I am always writing something down. They have been a big help in letting my focus on getting things done, and to have some inspiration for future ideas for crochet projects, and color schemes, as well as places to network and elements to add to my business in the future. Next post will include some of the ideas I've got for the future, as well as an overview of how things have been going in the past and into the present.

    Wednesday, March 9, 2011

    Getting Started in the Blog World


    I am going to see about posting on here on occasion. I'll gradually transfer my time from FB posts to a blog style layout here. Hopefully in the next few months, I'll be able to journal often enough to make things interesting. Will be fun to get used to the layout and create some fun things.

    Currently my FB fan page is where I post the fun links and new photos.

    I plan to show some of the newest items I'm working on as I go. At the end of the day, when I lived at home, my Mom would get to see whichever new piece/s I'd made that day. Now my poor (male) room mate and sweetheart get that excitement. They don't always jump with joy like I do, so I'm going to use this as that outlet. So those of you that actually might get excited with the new stuff as it appears can enjoy it!