I seem to remember last year our Mother telling us that February is one of her least favorite months. Even though it is her birthday month and it is a short month, it is some of the least pleasant times of year in Wisconsin, and she said the month tends to drag. It certainly doesn't feel like a shorter month here, and we've certainly managed to pack a lot into it.
Valentine's Day was busy at the shop - we had the craft table full of supplies and easily a dozen people each day stopping in the week before the 14th to make cards. We were a little worn out by the end, and a little crabby about caps left off the glue sticks and other breaches of crafting ettiquette.
I might have finally made it through all the end of year wrap-up, for the store at least (I still have to deal with my personal taxes but I'm just going to not think about that for a week). Sachi doesn't seem to have let up the pace at all when it comes to making things and restocking for the store. She got out all her supplies to make more felt Wisconsin ornaments and has been cutting little fabric scraps to make thumb tacks as well.
This week, however, we have mostly been in a jewelry-making mood. Sachi's been studying her French General jewelry-making book and getting some ideas and I've just been going crazy with beads from Bead Bin and Vintaj supplies. I'm usually very lazy about putting things together but I've been making more necklaces and earrings using eyepins to add more dangly elements and other complications. We are hoping to head to Galena next week for more Vintaj inspiration.
I am house-sitting and have all my jewelry-making supplies strewn around the living room where I am sitting and watching Lord of the Rings on the big TV, comforting myself in the sight of Viggo and the words of hope that are desperately needed as Wisconsin's Governor announced his budget which seems to be devoid of anything but kickbacks to his special interest donors (road construction, private school vouchers, to name a few). We have been on a bit of a button hiatus since the November election but Sachi and I are slowly warming up and gettting back into the swing of things. The latest batch has a few for Wisconsin's upcoming Supreme Court election as well as some general Wisconsin politics buttons. I did NOT know that Pat Roggensack's given name is Patience! For some reason that just seems so incongruous. I can't look too long at the numbers of her campaign donors but it irks me to no end that a Supreme Court judge would be receiving campaign money from out of state people like the WalMart heirs. Ugh! It's taking a little editing, but we're close to getting something for Walker's "I care too much" speech (apparently he cares too much about poor people to maintain a safety net, but doesn't seem to mind government dependence on tax breaks and contracts for private industries). More tax breaks for wealthy people and corporations are leaving us a little nervous about Wisconsin's future, particularly our public school systems which used to be held in such high regard.
Earlier this week, we hosted my niece's 4K class - 18 4- and 5- year-olds... in this shop? Luckily that morning a friend of mine who lives in Africa mentioned that a troupe of monkeys invaded her house so I was aware that it could have been worse. The kids had a little tour of the shop and then made a banner for their classroom. The highlight was probably when they got to take turns playing customer and sales associate, scanning bar codes of products. I was honestly so busy try to keep an eye on all those little hands that I didn't take any pictures while they were working on the banner, but this is the before picture, showing all of Sachi's prep work. She decided to cut the flags in a different shape (cutting 12x12 sheets into 6x6 squares, then marking a spot 2 inches up and 3 inches over and using a scissors to cut the points) - they turned out to make a very cute banner.
Items that we ordered at the Craft & Hobby trade show are starting to arrive. The 6x6 paper pads continue to be a popular item for us. Given our small space, we have trouble finding enough room to display 12x12 papers and pads as they deserve, but these guys are easy, and convenient for card making and other paper projects (they'd be just the right size to make banners).