Anna’s Nest

Fabulous Simple Skirt Tutorial

7 July 09

I started making a skirt this past weekend, hoping it would be ready in time for me to wear it for July 4th festivities. I used a fabric that I’ve had in my stash for awhile, from one of my favorite fabric designers, the Alexander Henry “Pink Zinnia”…

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Etsy Yart Sale 2009

13 June 09

And other exciting things – for instance, I’ve been working on some new items for the shop, and just last night finished the listing process for a new print/painting (praint?) Presenting…dum da da DUM…The Cat And The Fiddle!
The Cat and the Fiddle

ALSO, as if that weren’t enough, I am also participating in the 2009 Etsy Yart Sale ….

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21 February 09

Hi guys! So sorry for the neglect. I’ve been in a blogging funk. It seems like there’s either nothing to say or, more often, there’s too much to say and my brain “shorts out” from all the options.


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Gift Tags!

17 December 08

I’m placing this note before the rants and gift tag linkies just in case you aren’t interested in such things :u) Just wanted to remind you all that TOMORROW is the last day to enter in my super-cool giveaway! Okay, that’s all. Carry on.

So, you’ve either made or bought all of your Christmas gifts by now, right? RIGHT!!!! (And of course all of the gifts I am giving are all together, neatly wrapped and stacked and organized alphabetically by content…HAHAHA!) Alright, I may be feeling the crunch a bit. I have no idea…

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Little Tree Giveaway!

11 December 08

Ooooo! I’m such a loser! I totally stood you all up. I promised to have the giveaway ready today, and you can see how that went. On the other hand, it technically is still Thursday, but I doubt any of you are up obsessively checking my website every minute to see if I’ll make the giveaway available.

Better late than never, though (I hope)!
Three Trees

I really did want to post the giveaway first thing this morning – the trees were done and everything. Mostly done, anyhow. I stayed up late last night and finished them (mostly). But, as you can see, the actual giving away…not so much…

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Awesome Crafty Blog!

10 December 08

I found an awesome website today when I was calming down after my panic episode. Paint In My Hair is just an awesome name for a crafty blog, don’t you think? Check out the free tutorials on the far left – no, I meant the other left. Okay, on the right. Anyhow, there are some awesome tutorials. I totally want to make the crate covers, and I think the bookplates would make really cute gifts along with a book or two, or just on their own (it printed out weird on my printer until I printed from Adobe Acrobat, and then everything was dandy – but it looked fine on the screen so perhaps it was just my printer showing me who is boss).

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Introducing - Anna's Nest!

10 November 08

Welcome to the new website! Change your bookmarks and RSS feeds, everyone! We have a cool new site with a cool new name!

I decided it needed a proper introduction. The post I wrote late last night, although surprisingly coherent…

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Shameless Plug

15 August 08

For my awesome SIL! She sells gorgeous jewelry on Etsy at knock-your-socks-off (in a good way) prices! Go forth and check it out!

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The Magic of Feed Readers, or "What is RSS?"

7 August 08

Warning! Technology is discussed below! Most details are probably correct. But no guarantees.

I keep up with a lot of websites. Probably more than your average person. I might be addicted. But I’m not ready to admit it.

There are my faves, which I highlight in the sidebar of my blog, but there are also quite a few others I visit on a semi-regular basis. This is all made possible by a little gadget called RSS , coupled with it’s corresponding program, called a Feed Reader. I don’t understand exactly how it works, but I don’t need to…

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Popcorn Bloomer Giveaway by Grosgrain!

1 August 08

Lookit the sweet little outfit! Grosgrain just amazes me with her fabulous creativity.

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Hundred Pushups Update

29 July 08

Brian is now in week 5 of the Hundred Push-ups challenge. Tonight he did over 160 push-ups (with a few rests in-between). Amazing, huh? Sadly, I had to withdraw myself from the challenge. Constantly lifting and holding my sweet baby, compounded perhaps by the three weeks of push-ups that I did make it through, has caused the wrist of my left hand to be very painful. I think I strained it, and now I’m wearing a thumb splint to help it to heal (thanks for the great advice, Jenny!). Having my thumb encased in a stiff wrap (gets a bit sticky with the summer being all hot and summery and all) isn’t the most comfortable thing I’ve ever experienced, but not wearing it is decidedly uncomfortable. I did make it all the way up to 30 consecutive push-ups before I wimped out, though. From a gal who started out struggling to make it through 1/10th of that, I’d say it’s not bad! And I’m still going to be in a challenge. I’m just making up my own. Who’s for Two Hundred Sit-ups? Anyone? I could make a website… No, seriously, that’s what I’m going for. Actually, crunches. I’ll keep you updated on the progress. Right now I’m on day one of week one. A bit winded, but I’ll make it. Unless something else gives out.

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Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog

21 July 08

Let me just say Joss Whedon is a genius. A very funny genius. Did you wonder what the Hollywood writers did during the writer’s strike? I mean, I know they picketed, but I presumed they didn’t do that ALL the time. And I was right! I give to you (dum da da dum) Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog! I’m kind of late to this party, but check it out anyway. Sadly, we just missed the free version, but that’s not their fault, and it’s now available on iTunes! After watching it tonight with Brian, my opinion is that it’s totally worth the four bucks to download all three episodes. You’ll not only be investing in 45 minutes of chuckles, you’ll be investing in the development of this too-long ignored, but quite vital film genre – Evil Villain Musical. Oh yeah. Oh, and don’t forget to read The Plan.

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21 July 08

Welcome, visitors from Tip Nut! What an honor to get to be included among so many other awesome crafty projects (combine gardening with crafting, you say?! Be still, my beating heart!) Thanks for the link!

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4 July 08

Brian and I have taken the One Hundred Push-ups challenge. This is a training program aimed at helping you achieve a goal of 100 consecutive push-ups in 6 weeks. I’m on day 2, and OUCH. You shouldn’t mess with muscles. They remember, and they are not the forgiving type. When I did my allotted push-ups for the day today, they burned like crazy, and almost decided to stop working part way through! But I’m going to do this, because I am a big wimp! See, before you start the training you do this test where you see how many good form push-ups you can get through. Humbling though it is, I will admit it. I couldn’t even get through one. I did do one. Actually, I did 3 (5 if you don’t count resting for about a minute). But they were all very bad form. VERY bad form. Think of bad form, and then think worse than that. That was me, but probably even worse. I was a writhing, wobbly mess, straining to get up off the floor in any way possible, who cares if it’s in the rules. Then I changed to “Girl” push-ups (also called knee push-ups), and I did much better. So I’m doing those. I don’t really feel bad about settling for the easier route, because, for one, they’re called “Girl Push-ups” for a reason. Girls just don’t have the same upper-body strength. Secondly, just over six months ago, I pushed a baby out. So, ya know, having done that, I’m not going to worry about a silly form of push-up. I’m secure in my upper body weakness. The important part is that I improve, right?

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Fridge Box

29 May 08

How cool is this?! Now you can make a fort even if you don’t need to buy a new fridge! Found via RookieMoms

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Crafting Heroes

24 May 08

Check out this nifty set of interviews with the “success stories” of the crafting world. A little dream of mine is to someday have some kind of crafty side-business – all the more excuse to do what I love, right? These interviews offer encouragement and advice to other with that same dream. Go for it, girls!

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19 May 08

Do you like Etsy? I really like it. I could spend all afternoon browsing though all the amazing, beautiful, quirky options. And don’t get me started on beautiful and useful. Not only are the items you buy on Etsy original and lovely, but you are supporting independent artists! What a wonderful combination! Etsy is a big and wonderful world. But a little overwhelming, especially if you just want to browse. One thing that I’ve found is a nice way to find stuff that I like is to find one item I like, and then go to that seller’s Favorites. Hopefully they have a lot of things favorited, many of which will be similar in style to their own things. Just a little extra, I found this download on Etsy, today. Free or with a $2 donation. And so many other cute things in that shop. Have fun!

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Blogs That Make Me Laugh and Friend Blogs

16 May 08

So here are some more blogs. Specifically ones that make me laugh (not that other blogs never do, but these more often than others). Cute Overload A great fix if you’re having a rough day. Loads of cuteness (i.e., Adorable animals in various adorable poses. With captions that make me laugh. What’s not to love?) I visit this pretty much daily (just in case – you never know when you’re in for a rough one, and I intend to be prepared!) Dooce If you haven’t jumped on this bandwagon yet, there’s still plenty of space! Dooce (a.k.a. Heather Armstrong) is one of the spear-headers of mommy blogging, and has had a lot of publicity in the past couple of years. She has a very clever way of writing the truth that is so spot-on it just makes you laugh. That and she’s just funny. If talking about poop bothers you, though, it’s probably not for you. There are some other blogs I like to keep up with because they are written by friends (I do have some real live ones, you know!). So I won’t list them all here, because that would just be like a mom going through her baby’s pictures and describing each one in painful detail. I don’t know of any one who would do that, do you? :u) That said, I do want to give plugs to a few. One is my DH’s blog, Be Good Not Bad. Some of his posts are a little over my head, but Brian has a great way of explaining hard to explain/understand techie things, and has some really great things to say too. Another is the blog of an amazing artist friend from college, Vance Reeser. He has several really cool items that he’s selling, including downloads of some neat videos that he animated, as well as prints and original work. And a special he’s currently having on a children’s book he’s writing and illustrating. Pretty nifty, no? I might need to do another post on parenting blogs I sometimes visit – what do you think? Have you had enough of the link-fest? :u)

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Crafty Mama Blogs

13 May 08

Visiting other websites is a source of inspiration and often amusement to me. Some of my favorite ones are written by other moms, many of whom actually make a living (or at least part of a living) through their websites [insert applause here]. I think that’s just the coolest thing ever, and I know it has to take a ton of effort on their part. Here are some of my favorite mama blogs that I generally keep up with, for your enjoyment (listed in no particular order): Wee Wonderfuls A very sweet mama blog with a strong crafty spin. Hillary Lang, the author, also sells patterns (there are some freebies which she links to in the sidebar, also). I found out about most of the other crafty mama websites that I visit via this one. Soule Mama Another wonderful mama blog. I believe I found this one through the links in the Wee Wonderfuls sidebar. This one has a strong emphasis on children, and teaching creativity to your younguns. The author, Amanda Soule, has even written a book on the subject, The Creative Family. Sew Mama Sew This is a blog with a much more business-y feel to it, perhaps because it is part of a larger business (just click on “Store” at the top to get to it). They are tutorial central, as well as the home of all kinds of handy advice. Recently they also started a forum for questions, which I haven’t tried yet. Another Notebook Written by a wonderful friend from college. (Hi, Bekah!) She writes frankly about the ups and downs of mothering (sometimes very hard to do – why does it feel sometimes like being a mom is some kind of contest to see who can be the best?). Bekah has some great insights and hilarious stories about her two little girls. Some more recent crafty blogs I’ve been following: Uncommon Grace All Sorts Oh, Fransson! Mayfly And some wonderful blogs written by people who I actually know in “real life”. Who also happen to be moms: Clappy Shoes Scriptus Rural Suburbia Thank you to all of you wonderful ladies who write your stories and other bits of wisdom for the rest of us to learn from you! I’ll post more tomorrow about some of the other websites I visit. Upcoming (hopefully sometime this week) – a post about Feed Readers (the only reason I’m able to keep up with so many websites and also keep my sanity!).

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A Post a Day in May! (?)

3 May 08

Jenny over at All Sorts (such a fun blog – I highly recommend a visit or two..or more!) is doing a “Post a Day in May” theme. This sounds so fun, and very inspiring, so I’m going to try to do it…however I say this with no little trepidation. Taking care of a baby, along with my other responsibilities…well, it’s just not a recipe for crazy amounts of blogging time (have I lowered your expectations enough yet?). That said, I enjoy a good challenge, and I enjoy blogging, so here I go! Feel free to join the fun!

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14 April 08

Don’t you love the name of this blog ? I do. And that’s just what I’ll be doing, because the lovely people over at SewMamaSew! drew my name as one of the 10 lucky winners of a “Charm Pack” of simply gorgeous fabrics. Woot! I’ve been wanting to make a quilt for Bridget, and obsessing over what fabric to get, and is this one too expensive, or maybe the pattern of this other would look better, or this third fabric – it’s maybe not so cute, but it’s on sale…yeah you get the idea. Anyhow, no more of that! All those tricksy decisions have been made for me (a good thing – she might have been off to college by the time I finished with my waffling), and I get to dive right into the making of! Hooray! And thank you, SewMamaSew (side note – the blog is attached to a lovely fabric store with oodles of delicious patterns! Go check it out!)

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Winter Gardening

13 January 07

I guess I’m not really a gardening nut. I just have a few small flower beds and I haven’t even planted a veggie garden yet (although I hope to do that someday soon). But I sure do enjoy my time in the garden. It’s a form of relaxation/exercise that combines many of the things that I enjoy into one hobby. During the winter months, that hobby is dramatically reduced. Dramatically. Toward January/February, I begin to feel quite forlorn. Especially when a couple of feet of snow cover the ground, and I have to put on my hubbies’ big boots just to take veggie scraps out to the compost heap (which I built with my own two hands last fall – thank you very much!). At this time of year, indoor gardening, although not quite as fulfilling as the sink-your-hands-into-the-earth, dirt-under-the-fingernails, get-an-aching-back involvement of the outdoor variety, is definitely a lifesaver, and can do a good job of tiding me over until the next growing season (or at least until I’m growing some seedlings to plant in the spring). Enter (tum ta da tum!) – windowsill herbs! Ali and Brett, my sister-in-law and her hubby, gave me a little windowsill herb kit for my birthday (thanks, guys! I’ll send you a real thank-you note soon!). They bought the cutest windowsill pot set – 3 pots with a shared tray – and sent them along with three garden in a bag herb kits. These things make great gifts! I should know :) You can give them on their own (the bag can act as the “pot”), or with a pretty pot. The bags contain the soil and a packet of seeds, as well as what they call “drainage discs”, which confused me until I realized they were talking about the packing peanuts that were in the bag (since the bags don’t have holes in the bottom, I guess this helps keep the soil from getting soggy if you overwater a bit). In addition to my windowsill garden, my little bonsai tree (Buddie), has helped with the appeasement of my green(ish) thumb. Buddie was also a gift – from my brother and sister-in-law. He likes to be pampered. And since that’s what I like to do, well, I think we have a match! I give Buddie a little spray bath once a week to help him humidify (sometimes more since our house gets so dry in the winter). I also check him once a day or so to make sure that his soil is moist. There isn’t a lot of it so it gets dried out easily. How about you? Do you get antsy for green things during the winter months? How do you cope?

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Desktop Pictures

9 March 06

Neat-o desktop pictures, anyone? I found the link on Drawn!

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12 February 06 I discovered this nifty website through one of my favorite collaborative weblogs, Drawn!, which I visit regularly. I drew two sketches, and received two in return. Here’s one of those I got in return: Try it out! You don’t have to do a masterpiece, or even anything that good, but it’s fun (and if you are worried that someone might think you are a bad artist, as far as I know it’s completely untrackable, so no one will know anyhow!) Have fun!

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Artsy Craftsy

7 February 06

I just can’t decide whether I’m artsy or craftsy. Actually, I think I’m both, but I don’t really know where to focus my energies. I love making pretty things. That’s the main focus right now. But it’s not very specific, if you know what I mean. For any other artsy/craftsy people out there, these two community blogs are the thing. They’re a great way to find the websites/blogs of other people with similar interests. I’ve been following the Drawn! site for quite awhile now, and just recently discovered Whip Up (through Drawn!, actually). So take a peek, and let me know what you think!

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