Friday, January 30, 2009

Mystic Crystal Revelations

Forgive me for indulging, but it's my Birthday Eve, so I went on a little hunt for something significant to share.
The first place I turned was to Rob Brezsny (a one-stop shop for all manner of freakiness), and he told me this:

"The seed cannot sprout upwards without simultaneously sending roots into the ground," says an ancient Egyptian proverb. Keep that thought in mind as you head into the thick of your new phase of growth, Aquarius. What part of you needs to deepen as you rise up? What growth needs to unfold in the hidden places as you gravitate toward the light? How can you go about balancing and stabilizing your ascension with a downward penetration?

(That's what she said;)

Check your own horoscope if you're into it. And since we're on the subject of planet alignment, take a gaze at the night sky this evening to behold a big, bright Jupiter hanging around the moon.

Finally, if you're looking for a reason to celebrate this fine winter weekend (who needs a reason?!) I'm happy to share my birthday with you.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Let's Make a Loom

I made a loom last weekend and it was so easy I thought I'd share it for any of you who are cooped up in the house and need an activity.
All you need to get started is a small board, some nails, a hammer and a little helper to hand you the nails.

Hammer an equal number of nails in rows on each side of the board. Keep them pretty close together.
It should look something like this......

Then take some yarn and start at one end and string it on around two nails, across to other side, around two nails, across to other side.....

Fasten the loose ends to the back with tape or tie them off onto the end nails. Next you need to find something to do the actual weaving with. You could use a knitting needle, Popsicle stick or anything else that might work. We found an arrowhead that was just perfect for the job. Attach some yarn to your weaving tool of choice and start going. It's over, under, over, under and on and on until you get to the end then turn around and keep going....over...under....

You're Weaving!!!! Hours of fun.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


Well, if the inauguration isn't a perfect reason to start drinking Mimosas at 10 AM, then I don't know what is.

Friday, January 16, 2009

First-Ever Sale On NOW!!

There are so many good reasons for us to hold our first sale, but here are ten of the best ones:

1. Only four more days until the Obama administration brings in "A New Birth of Freedom"!!!

2. We love you.

3. We're all trying to save money, but shouldn't have to sacrifice cuteness and originality.

4. We love you. Yes, you.

5. There is a chance we might be forced out of business in February. (Have you not heard? Click here and here to see what you can do to help.)

6. We might have gotten a little overexcited in our preparations for Holiday sales.

7. We were taking inventory anyway, so we thought "What the hell?"

8. We need to clear the way for some new designs.

9. We really do love you.

10. We're just in really good moods.

So, everything in the shop is at least 20% off. Guitars are 30% 0ff and prints are 33.333333% off! The prices are already reduced for everybody's convenience, so put your calculator away and stock up!!

P.S. You may notice the Hand-Stitched Guitar listing has not been changed. This is because it's hand-stitched. We're nice, but we're not crazy.

Double P.S. If you're one of the 150 passengers that survived yesterday's Hudson River landing, convo us and receive an additional discount. If you're the pilot or crew, we'll dress your kids (or grandkids) for free. That was bad-ass.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Journey of the Dolls

It all began one morning in October when I woke up to the first cold day of the season. The clouds and fog were so refreshing after a long hot summer. The perfect day to cozy up under a blanket and start a project. Scarlett agreed so we made some hot cocoa and both squished into papa's chair. We chose to make dolls for each other for our project. After a quick sketch of some faces we got right down to stitching. We ended up sitting in that chair all day just talking and enjoying each other. It was one of my favorite days of the whole year.

Throughout the past few months we've managed to sneak in one of those "doll days" every couple of weeks. We have stitched and stuffed our little hearts into these dolls.

She even got to use her very own sewing machine, a cherished birthday present from Jaime.

We finished them just in time to wrap them and place them under the tree.

Scarlett named hers Moon and mine Star. Whenever I look at them my heart swells with love and pride (because my daughter is just barely 6 and she made such an awesome doll) and memories. I remember all those moments where the rest of the world disappeared and it was just her and I creating something together.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Out with the Old

It looks like the CPSC is doing some fine-tuning on the new lead testing law that will take effect in February, and that DamestarBaby will be able to keep on truckin'. We officially fall under the "wool and cotton" category that's being exempted.


We are, nevertheless, planning to overhaul the shop. We're going to have a massive inventory sale, so keep your eyes peeled for that. And we're going to give ourselves a new name. DamestarBaby still holds a special place in my heart, but it was kind of a hasty decision, to begin with, and I'm really tired of having to say it three times and then spell it (it's D-A-M-E, like Dame Edna (seriously), then "STAR", then "BABY", all one word). Plus, no one ever gets the double capitalization thing right.

This is not to say that our new name will be easier to remember. It's simply not like us to choose something common, and it's pretty late in the game, so half the trouble is finding a name that still has an available domain and Etsy username.

SO, good luck with that, huh?

Just when you all were getting used to us. Well, maybe we'll throw in a few new designs for your trouble.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Shop Update

I just listed some new items in the shop. Toadstools for bigger kids.....

And Banjos in Pink and Asphalt.....

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

The Darnedest Things

There's that phrase that's said when we hear those mistakenly witty, innocently truthful statements from our kids. Like yesterday, por ejemplo, Mazzy was discussing facial hair and its relation to gender with her dad and said, "NO, girls don't have beards! But I saw a lady at the Nutcracker who had a mustache!"

Then there was that major test of willfullness to not fall down laughing, and instead show the dignified compassion you'd like them to show. So I ducked behind the counter for a minute and when I composed myself, I stood up and calmly explained that there are exceptions to every rule, and that everyone's beautiful in their own way. No help from Daddy, of course, who was doubled over for about ten minutes.

I digress.

Just as often, though, I hear myself say some pretty ridiculous things in response to my kids. Sometimes grossly oversimplifying and sometimes trying in vain to explain things much too complicated for them to understand.

My two-year-old is chin deep into her "Why?" phase. All parents know what I'm talking about. Well, it only takes about three or four "Why?s" before you get into complex physics or existentialism.

"Eden, you have to put a jacket on before you go outside."
"Because it's cold."
"Because it's Winter."
"Well, because at this point in our planet's orbit around the sun, the part of the Earth we live on is tilted away from the.... oh wait, you're two. Just put your jacket on."

I blurt out some good ones when I'm frustrated, too. Like last night I was just about finished with my homemade lentil soup, with a loaf of homemade bread in the oven when Eden came into the kitchen covered in a mysterious clear gelatinous substance. I followed her into the bathroom and saw that she had been busy spreading an entire bottle's worth of Corn Husker's Lotion all over the floor, and I said, "Oh nice. Way to ruin this golden Martha Stewart moment!" as I stomped off to get some towels.

Even better, though, if you can remember that long ago, are those things we used to say before the kids arrived. Things like: "I'm never going to say 'no' to my kids unless I have a really good reason"; or, "I'm not going to be one of those moms that cuts the crust off her kids' sandwiches"; or how about "my kid will eat what I eat. None of that short order cook crap." Ha!

Well, there's something very humbling and comforting in knowing that we're all in this together. We'll all get smarter and communicate more effectively, but hopefully we'll stay innocently truthful.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Better Late?

I know this is so last year, but I have to share some holiday snippets.

Here are Mazzy and Eden about to embark on their first attempt at ice skating. Note the worried look on E's face and her death grip on Mazzy's hand. She didn't let go the whole time.

And here we are warming up after that.

Here they are with their "Swedish Fish Snowman" on a play day in the snow. (It was Eden's turn to wear the hat.)

Here we are warming up after that.

This is the world as it looked to us when we woke up on Christmas morning. It was still, silent and glittering white as far as the eye could see.
We were inside for most of that day drinking hot cocoa and playing reindeer games.

Another year gone, a new one rolling out before us.

Happy New Year!

(now, back to work;)