Tuesday, May 12, 2009


May is almost over and I've just recently accepted the fact that it is, in fact, Spring.

I had a great wedding anniversary on the 5th and a wonderful Mothers'Day!

I've also begun slowly to add some more computer and crafting activities back into my repertoire since my hand has considerably improved with therapy.

We participated in the MS Walk 2009 and MS Marketplace, in particular, which was a tent where three other Chapter members and we sold our handcrafted items. We had a fun day; beautiful weather, sold a number of items and donated 10% back to the Chapter.

It was a very long day because we had to be there to set up before 6:30 AM. We were done by about 2:30 and home by 4PM, having come back over the Brooklyn Bridge under our own power.

Since we didn't pack anything extra and really hadn't much time to spend on photography, the only photos we have are cell phone pictures but here they are:

I have written here about my shop on Etsy and about crafting nights at least once.

Another aspect of Etsy is the grouping together of members into Teams for the purpose of mutual support and promotion.

I recently joined the NewNewYork Team which ia composed of Etsy members who live and or work in New York City. I'm just beginning to find my way around the workings of the group and hope that I'll be able to be a truly active member by Fall. You'll likely be reading more about this as time goes on.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009


I haven't posted or done much crafting at all for most of two months because I developed tendonitis and synovitis in my right hand and arm. I've been going to Occupational Therapy twice a week.

Even though I'm left handed, most tasks, computer and otherwise, actually take both hands. So I've been limiting myself to those things that are absolutely necessary, using speech recognition on the computer where I can, and spacing tasks out, in order to rest my hand and arm and give it a chance to heal. I felt fairly virtuous about it for the first week or so, but now I'm feeling fairly frustrated and ready to get back into action.

At this point, I'm adding a few things at a time back into my repertoire and trying to find the easiest, least stressful way to do it. At least my Feldenkrais® training has given me tools to do that.

I do need to get a few more items ready for sale because we're participating in a new aspect of the MS Walk, staffing a Members' Business Table where we'll display and sell our crafts.

Monday, February 23, 2009

What's in my Etsy shop?

As I mentioned in my last post, I've become enamored of needle felting and am in the process of adding new pieces to my etsy shop.

I've also added the two books that David and I published which combine his photography and my writing, as well as framed prints of David's photos.

Here are some of the items that currently appear in my shop:

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Craft Night at EtsyLabs-2/9/09

This was the pre-Valentine Craft Night and we worked on needle-felted hearts, among other things.

This was perfect synchronicity for me because I'd recently developed an interest in needle-felting and had purchased a small kit. I'd seen some felted items that attracted me and was interested in three dimensional objects in particular.

A couple of weeks ago, I completed a needle felted heart on a base of felt. It was three dimensional, but rather flat. I went to Craft Night in search of answers to some of my questions. I got the answers I was looking for and, as usual, had a wonderful time!

The evening was very well attended; pretty much a packed house for part of the evening..... The teacher for the evening, Nguyen-Le who owns the knitknit shop on Etsy.com was low key but very helpful and supportive.

I found out how to make my pieces rounder, received inspiration and had fun; what a great Valentine!

Thanks Nguyen! Thanks Etsy!

Below are my earlier endeavor, craft night products and some items I made later, all transformed into wearable or use-able form and now in my etsy shop (www.felden.etsy.com):

Monday, January 12, 2009

Craft Night at EtsyLabs

Just came back from Craft Night at EtsyLabs.

Tonight's project was creating a sugar scrub; a really fun project. I made mine with grapeseed oil and vanilla oil (and sugar, of course); smells wonderful! This demystified the process and allowed us to try it out without a major investment in materials. I think this might be the start of a whole new period of my experimentation in the area of bath and beauty products, though I don't know if they'll make it to my shop.

I always enjoy my Craft Night experiences, not only for the projects themselves, but for the opportunity to meet, speak to and interact with other crafters.

Here are some examples of items similar to what we learned about already on Etsy.com:

Sweet Treat Whipped Cream Fluff Sugar Scrub by AnitaCraftyCreations

Foaming Bath Butter Sugar Scrubs with Jojoba Spheres by TheMermaidsTreasure

Foaming Sugar Scrub by EsanSpa

Satin and Lace SASSY Apricot Sugar Scrub by damagicmirror

Monday, January 5, 2009

A new year begins...

Christmas and New Year are behind us now and I'm already a bit behind on postings!

It seems that we no sooner got finished at the Craft Fair and we needed to prepare for Christmas at home. While we decided not to do the full court press on decorations, we decided on having a small gathering of family and friends for dinner on Christmas Day. We did the exact amount of cleaning necessary to prepare for guests and did some cooking and a lot of baking ahead of time.

Here are some cookie photos:

Think there's a market for this art form on Etsy.com?

Then came the day after Christmas (Boxing Day, St. Stephen's Day) and we had a health scare with Meka, my assistance dog.

After preparing for and beginning our Christmas celebration with "Midnight" Mass on Christmas Eve and serving dinner to family and friends yesterday on Christmas Day, we awoke today with expectations of a lazy day of recovery and minor clean-up.

When Meka, got up to eat, I noticed and mentioned to my husband, David, that Meka seemed to be limping. He came back to lay at the foot of my bed and later when he attempted to get up, he seemed unable to do so and looked limp and lethargic. We were finally able to coax and cajole him up and got him to walk, though unsteadily. Once walking, he was able to continue, however his gait was not normal and fluid and as soon as he began to slow down, he seemed to want to sit or lie down or lean on who or whatever was close at hand.

I called our vet but upon discussion, we decided to take him for immediate emergency evaluation.

Meka stayed overnight at the Veterinary Emergency and Referral Group here in Brooklyn in order to receive supportive treatment and to be monitored.

After taking a history, the vet had noted that Meka was exhibiting neurological symptoms arising from two distinct areas in the brain, brain stem and cerebellar regions.

We could not recall any reason to believe that he had ingested anything toxic, nor had he suffered any trauma.

They did blood work and x-rays which were essentially normal and unremarkable.

After determining that the facility was fully staffed throughout the night and that his neurological status would be monitored throughout the night and could receive treatment as necessary, reluctantly agreed to have him stay.

I checked in by phone for updates at least five times between getting home and 5 AM.
The reports varied from "somewhat worse" to "more or less the same" to "somewhat better" throughout the night but all the staff I spoke to agreed that he was "sweet" and that when offered food, would eat (that's my boy!!).

Later in the morning, I had just picked up the phone and was just about to call to check in again and to say that we would be coming in to see how he was and what our next step would be, when the phone rang. It was one of the vets from VERG who told me that Meka was doing much better; that he was walking and moving more normally, was wagging his tail, seemed in good spirits, obeyed commands. He stated that he would like to discharge Meka this afternoon!

So, at about 4PM on the 27th of December, we went to collect him.

As I waited for a staff member to open accessible entrance door, I turned my wheelchair around and there was Meka, returning from a walk with a vet tech.

I don't know who was more pleased or excited!

We completed all the necessary debriefing; his IV catheters were removed; follow-up appointment made and we were on our way.

After settling him in, I needed to get to church because I was due to act as Lector at 5:30 PM Mass. Having done that, and answering lots of questions as to Meka's whereabouts both in church and on the way there and back, I arrived home to find David taking the photo below.

As you can see from the picture, he doesn't look quite his ebullient self; he's a bit weary looking and has his shaven "cuffs", but is not deterred from a good chew on a tennis ball.

We're had a follow-up appointment on Tues. with the staff surgeon who specializes in neurology at the center where we had Meka seen on Friday and Saturday. He said that he believed Meka had experienced a transient ischemic attack (TIA); that there was no way of knowing if or whether it could happen again or preventing it from doing so without exposing him to medications and or procedures which have their own risks and expenses. He stated that he didn't see a need for follow-up unless we saw further symptoms.

We'll do regular follow-up with our regular vet.

At the moment Meka's pretty much back to his old self and continues to do well. All in all this is the best outcome for which I could have wished.

I've got a few new items ready to post on etsy.com within the next couple of days, and plans for several more soon after.