Have you heard of this guy, the man going across from Tennessee to Arizona in a mule-drawn wagon? Today we just happened to be coming home from the post office and Braum's when traffic in our little downtown slowed way down to yield to John McComsey and his two mules! How fun! The kids were so excited (which was good because they had been crabby after running errands all afternoon!) and we figured he just might keep going straight and go right by our house. Since we were not being drawn by horses we rushed home, threw the groceries in the fridge real quick, and my oldest pulled up his website so we could double check that it wasn't just a crazy kook and something worth getting excited about.
Sure enough, John McComsey isn't a kook :-), and is making his way slowly across the country to visit his sister and her husband in Arizona, and their daughter, his neice, who has Multiple Sclerosis. And he's apparently having a good time with it, too!
Anyway, it was a delight to see him drive past - his mules are so patient as the cars zipped around him (carefully, I hope!) We all went outside and waved - it was like our own private parade this afternoon! We wish you the best, Mr. McComsey! And safe travels and a happy reunion with your family!
I've been a terrible slacker mom lately, letting the technology parent the children while I clean, pack, clean, pack, clean, and pack. Since most everything is clean and packed now, I can relax and start to DO some things with my kids instead of just keeping them busy so I can get my own stuff done!
This afternoon (after I had a nap, of course!) we made these great cookies. The original recipe is from here. Surprisingly, after making the dough (a double batch, because I have a double batch of kids!) they were able to do most of the work! The rolled the balls, then after the dough balls chilled a bit, they rolled them together three at a time into multicolored ropes that they coiled into "lollipops". I suppose that cookie sticks could have been shoved into the cookies as they were cooking, but with my bunch I didn't think they'd last long enough to enjoy them standing up in an arrangement! Still a great big hit all around! Even the little one was available to make sure that any cookie dough didn't fall to the floor. Man, she's a quick one!
I made this little dolly with pretty rainbow hair for one of my daughter's friends. My 8 year old picked out the dress fabric because she loves turquoise and brown together, and wanted to use brown hair because the birthday girl has long brown hair. But one of the neighbor children was ready to play, so she didn't want to have to go to Hobby Lobby for brown yarn for hair. All the yarn in my stash is multicolored for some reason and I just this afternoon realized that! So my daughter was thrilled with Rainbow Hair Dolly, and I think she came out brilliantly! Hopefully the party girl will enjoy her as well! Doll is loosely based on the tutorial here
This is so well written from a fellow Etsian that I wanted to share with you.
(It's my first blog-in! I guess I'm a real hippie now, not just a wanna-be!)
As parents and concerned citizens I’m sure most of us at one time or another have been confronted with the question of lead poisoning. But have you asked yourself what your government is doing to protect your children from lead contained in toys? The answer? They're banning toys, taking books from schools and libraries, hurting low income families, killing entrepreneurial spirit and risking putting the economy in an even greater depression than we've seen in decades. I'd like to introduce you to their solution: the CPSIA.
Do you know about the CPSIA? No? Then I ask you to take a few minutes to find out about it.
The CPSIA stands for Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act, a new set of laws that will come into effect on 10 February, 2009 and will impact many, many people in a negative way. Make no mistake, this is very real. View it for yourself. If Forbes, the American Library Association and numerous other media are paying attention, perhaps you should too.
How will these new laws affect you? Well, here are a few examples:
To the Parents of Young Students: Due to the new law, expect to see the cost of school supplies sky rocket. While those paper clips weren't originally intended for your student to use, they will need to be tested now that your 11-year-old needs them for his school project. This law applies to any and all school supplies (textbooks, pencils, crayons, paper, etc.) being used by children under 12.
To the Avid Reader: Due to the new law, all children's books will be pulled from library and school shelves, as there is no exemption for them. That’s okay though, there's always television. Our children don’t need to learn the love of reading after all. Article from the American Library Association http://www.wo.ala.org/districtdispatch/?p=1322
To the Lover of All Things Handmade: Due to the new law, you will now be given a cotton ball and an instruction manual so you can make it yourself since that blanket you originally had your eye on for $50 will now cost you around $1,000 after it's passed testing. It won't even be the one-of-a-kind blanket you were hoping for. Items are destroyed in the testing process making one-of-a-kind items virtually impossible. So that gorgeous hand-knit hat you bought your child this past winter won’t be available next winter.
To the Environmentalist: Due to the new law, all items in non-compliance will now be dumped into our already overflowing landfills. Imagine not just products from the small business owners, but the Big Box Stores as well. You can't sell it so you must toss it. Or be potentially sued for selling it. You can't even give them away. If you are caught, it is still a violation.
To the Second-Hand Shopper: Due to the new law, you will now need to spend $20 for that brand new pair of jeans for your 2-year old, rather than shop at the Goodwill for second hand. Many resale shops are eliminating children's items all together to avoid future lawsuits.
To the Entrepreneur: Due to this new law, you will be forced to adhere to strict testing of your unique products or discontinue to make and/or sell them. Small businesses will be likely to be unable to afford the cost of testing and be forced to close up shop. Due to the current economic state, you'll have to hope for the best when it comes to finding a new job in Corporate America.
To the Antique Toy Collector: Due to the new law, you'd better start buying now because it's all going to private collection and will no longer be available to purchase. “Because the new rules apply retroactively, toys and clothes already on the shelf will have to be thrown out if they aren't certified as safe.” http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123189645948879745.html
To the American Economy: Already struggling under an economy that hasn’t been this weak in decades, the American economy will be hit harder with the inevitable loss of jobs and revenues from suppliers, small businesses and consumers. The required testing is far too costly and restrictive for small businesses or individuals to undertake.
To the Worldwide Economy: Due to this new law, many foreign manufacturers have already pulled out of the US market. You can imagine the impact of this on their businesses.
New regulations from the CPSC passed by Congress will prohibit many independent artists and designers from selling their work soon unless the act is amended quickly. Fellow etsy seller Shalom Shultz put together this great pamphlet detailing many of the items that you will no longer be able to purchase for your own children or make to sell.
As a parent, I am definitely concerned about lead in my children's toys, but I made a choice long ago to limit own own "consumption" of these plastic toys made by large companies for various other reasons anyway. To deny parents their own "choice" of making playthings for their children seems more than a little invasive. Please spread the word, contact your own congresspersons (I have) and let them know that while you support regulations monitoring what comes in to the USA from overseas factories with little quality control, you still think that what you make at home is safer for your family anyway. Thanks!
Christ-follower, Wife, Mommy, Kisser of Owies, Bandaid-Dispenser, Diaper-Changer, Sewer, Internet Junkie. In that order. Except some days I change more diapers than anything else.
See my shop: http://babymoon.etsy.com