Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Last Post of the Month

March has been SUCH a quiet month in my Etsy shop, I'm hoping that it isn't a sign of how things will be for the rest of the year - this month I've only had five sales; last year in March I had just over twice that number. Sigh.

I've decided that I'm not going to print any more of my cards just yet - I had been thinking about placing a order for some new ones with Moo before the Summer season, but I can't justify the cost of it right now and I still have so many in 'stock' so that should last me out the rest of the year. It's  more practical to sell up the ones I already have instead of keeping printing more and more and more of them, so for once I'm going to be practical and do the thing that makes business sense.

I'm thinking about putting my Etsy shop on sale for a while to try and bring in some extra euros - it looks like the ferry (my proper 'day job' for six months of the year) will be at least a month late starting this season...we were meant to be starting this coming Thurs/Friday but things are all up in the air right now.

Ugh, this is a pretty miserable post really - I'll come up with some positives..

We've just come back from a trip over to visit my step-daughter and some friends in England - it was a bit of a whirlwind trip rather than a holiday as we had booked it when we thought that the ferry would shortly be re-starting up, so we were only away for a few days. But it was lovely - and I got to meet up with the mighty Shirley in Cheltenham again for lunch and wool shopping again :)

While we were away my new camera came in the post http://www.sony.ie/electronics/cyber-shot-compact-cameras/dsc-h300 this is the one that I opted for...it's a big step forward compared to my old (more basic) Sony Cyber-Shot. I'm still finding my way round it but I think we'll get on ok together :)

These are some photos from when I went to the beach the other day - I'm really liking the zoom (it's a x35 one compared to my old x15).

Sunday, March 22, 2015


 I've made these a while ago, just after my old camera conked out, but I thought I may as well take photos using the camera my Dad lent me, so they are now available in my Etsy shop :)

..and these (yet more lovely King Cole 'riot' dk)

and these were the ones that I was still working on yesterday!

I'm working on yet more of them (still in King Cole, it really is one of my favourite brands) - when I've been in this depression it's all my head can cope with -- something very familiar and repetitive and of course I love the colours.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

another update..

Ugh, I think March has just been a not-so-good month for me just recently - this is only my 4th update of the month and I really feel like I've kind of stagnated lately.

I've hit a real depression - my own fault I'm ashamed to say, as I take tablets to help with my mood/hormones and somehow lost track and managed to lose a whole week this month: with the result that I have been the lowest I've been in years.

I know I'm lucky really - this is only temporary and I know what has caused it, but it is kind of scary to see so clearly how much of a difference my tablets make and how I would be without them :(

While I've been like this I've been re-reading ''Crochet Saved my Life'' on my Kindle (an excellent book) - when I'm really bad I just can't get my head round most of my crochet; I feel stupid for saying it but it just feels 'wrong' and too complicated...

For example I'm making hats for Barbara's the Artist's art retreat again this year but I just had to take a break from it last week as it just wasn't making sense. This is wool that I've already worked with in the past (this will be my third year making the hats for her artists, and every year we use the same Irish Donegal tweed and change the colour each time) -- so I should be capable of it but it's just not working ;(

So I've gone back to making crocodile wrist warmers yet again ...

I took this photo just now, working outdoors on our swing-seat in the garden. I'm not feeling so awful today so hopefully I'm starting to turn the corner back towards normality.

Look at this for a stunningly beautiful clear blue sky!

Oh gosh that's another thing - my beloved Sony Cybershot camera has finally kicked the bucket. It has survived years of me dropping it, leaving it behind me on the beach...you name it...and finally it has had enough and has given up the ghost.

I love my camera so much; this is the first digital 'proper' camera that I've ever had and it felt like an extention of myself: reflecting how I see the world and taking all the photos for my Etsy shop, greetings cards...everything.

In the meantime my Dad has kindly lent me his old camera (which is a bit wonky but still works) - so I've used that to take the photos in this update. It doesn't feel the same though :(  We've gone ahead and ordered a new Cybershot from Sony - I'm hoping that I will get on ok with it, I think that because I had had my old camera for so long it's bound to feel a bit strange to be using something different, but watch this space.

Saturday, March 14, 2015


 It's been a wee while since I posted anything about my other passion - beach combing/cleaning so I thought I'd put this to rights.

 I couldn't believe my luck earlier this month - LOOK! I found my ninth ever sea heart!
this is how I like to see the tide-line looking -- tiny shells and bits of seaweed and no plastic in sight at all. Sadly this is the exception rather than the norm. I just worked out the other day that I have filled over 100 bags of rubbish from the local beaches (so far) this winter/spring - and of course there's still more to be collected...
 This is a buoy I picked up in St. Finan's bay last week -- it has come all the way from America -- with a bit of googling and a lot of help from a commercial fisherman's site on facebook (based in America) I've been able to trace it backwards. It started off life being used on a boat fishing off Massachusetts and then must have got lost somehow and then was re-used by a boat fishing off North Carolina! Somehow it got lost again and ended up on the coast here in Ireland!

I'm still finding little plastic soldiers/cowboys etc...stuff like this makes the back-breaking work of cleaning the rubbish off the beach more interesting.

And finally look at this beautiful bird -- it's a common scoter and I found him over near Rinn Rua the other week - poor thing, he was exhausted and near death... I picked him up and brought him home where he stayed overnight in our old henhouse. I didn't have high hopes for his survival and sadly I was right, he died early the next morning.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Avocado Stone Faces ~~ please click on the link to take you to this amazing Etsy shop! This is my present to myself to celebrate my 700th Etsy sale :) The artist is also a member of the EtsyIrelandTeam and I first noticed her listings on the ''post your new listings here'' thread in the team forums.

A while ago I fell in love with her acorn pendants and as she didn't have any in stock recently I sent her a custom request - she was super quick to reply and actually was making acorn pendants when I sent her my message :)

I can't recommend this seller highly enough - sometimes when I've ordered stuff, the communication was lacking or slow but Jan is super on the ball speedy! And look at how beautifully packaged my pendant was, and with a really lovely hand-written note too - it was like getting a present in the post :)

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Well, having got the year off to a great start with my blog (17 posts in two months) I seem to have ground to a halt. It's already the 10th March and this is only my first post of the month.

Not that it matters really, it just means that not a lot has happened I guess..

I've got my fifth shockwave treatment this week - on Thursday morning, hopefully it will all go well again. There definitely is a huge improvement in my tennis elbow - I'm able to go without wearing my clasp most of the time now; I only wear it if I am beachcleaning or if I am crocheting over a long period of time.

I do find it hard every time to remember that I need to try and rest after the treatment and to cope with the ache and pain for a day or so; some weeks have been better than others, but overall it certainly has been worth it and I would whole-heartedly recommend it to anyone else in a similar situation.

My Etsy shop is kind of ticking along - I'm up to 704 sales now. I've finally chosen what I wanted to treat myself to as a present to celebrate my 700th sale - watch this space...I'll post about it when it arrives.

This is what I've been making lately - I'm up to 137 listings in my Etsy shop :)

I'm in the middle of another pair of the crocodile stitch wrist warmers - they really are my favourite things to make and I'm using up some of my lovely King Cole riot dk from my last Springwools order.

I really need to make a start on the hats for Barbara the artist's summer retreat - I'm still thinking about what pattern to use....