Monday, October 18, 2010

Stitch Witchery - FREE Halloween Witch Embroidery Pattern

Today I am the guest blogger over at Confessions of a Pagan Soccer Mom as a part of the 31 Days of Halloween celebration.
Please stop by for a visit and read my post.
There are also giveaways of some great goodies going on, so don't miss out on that!

As a part of my guest post, I am sharing a new, free hand embroidery pattern.  I want to share it with my readers here as well.

Meet Kamilla.
Kamilla is a sweet little witch who does not understand why everyone wants to call her "wicked".
She likes tea, cupcakes with lots of icing, brooms with smooth handles, and full moons.
She rides her broom sidesaddle because she is a lady.

The link will take you to MediaFire, which I use to host my PDF pattern files.  You will need a PDF reader to view the pattern.  If you require a high res jpg instead of a PDF, please just leave a comment with your email address or email me and I will send a copy to you.

Kamilla would be adorable stitched up onto a trick-or-treat tote bag, a festive wallhanging, a blanket or onesie for your favorite sweet witch, or even just used as a coloring page for the kids!
As always, this design is available free for your personal use.  Please do not sell this pattern in any format, or sell items made using this pattern without express written permission (my email is on the sidebar).
I had actually intended to add a few more stars to the design before I posted it, but then I forgot (ahhh the joys of short term memory loss!).  I think adding a few more stars in embroidery, or even in beads or sequins would be fun.
If you stitch her up or color her, please share a link to your work in the comments below. I would love to see!

Hugs & Happy Halloween/Blessed Samhain/Happy Autumn to all of you!

ps: I want to thank everyone for their well-wishes during my illness.  The flu has finally gone, leaving just a cough in its wake. Still dealing with a toothache, but that gets dealt with in a week :)

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Flu. Tiny word for so much misery.

Image from Big Fat Blog

Hi people!

Wait.  That exclamation point implies far more enthusiasm that I am currently capable of feeling.  Let's try that again.

Hi people.

(much better)

I have so many things I want/need to blog about, but it would appear that I have been slammed by that ugly bug. The Flu.  I don't know if it is of an avian, porcine, or regular variety, all I can say for certain is that it sucks, it hurts, and I am feeling quite whiny. I only leave the house a couple of times every month, and yet the stupid bug STILL managed to find me.  

I hope to be back up and feeling alive soon.

In the meantime, I would like to do a little public service announcement, reminding everyone to get their flu shot this season.  Not only does it help protect you, but your loved ones as well.  Needles aren't fun.  This is less fun.


PS: If I am not perky in time, please don't forget to check out my October 18th post at Confessions of a Pagan Soccer Mom during the 31 Days of Halloween event over there.  I am sharing a brand new free hand embroidery pattern (perfectly festive!).
See my sidebar for the button.
Also, check out the button for the awesome FREE art e-course Art, Heart & Healing that begins on October 18th.  I am just a fellow attendee.  I want to learn some new techniques and how to color and shade.  Sign up and be artsy with me (and about 700 other wonderful people!).

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Are you Pink? October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

October is Breast Cancer Awareness month. The pink ribbon has become synonymous with the cause that has touched the lives of so many women (and men).
I would like to share this beautiful video compiled by bewellonline from YouTube (featuring the amazing song I Run For Life by Melissa Etheridge) with my readers, and invite you to post the pink ribbon on your blog to help the cause.

See below for the lyrics that accompany the lovely images in this video.

To save this ribbon (transparent PNG), right click on the image and select Save As. Share it on your blog, on your header, in your email signature, forum signatures, and wherever else you can help spread awareness.

For more information about Breast Cancer, its awareness campaigns, symptoms, early detection, treatments, and survivor stories, please visit any or all of the websites below.

Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation
Pink Ribbon
Susan G. Komen for the Cure
Feel Your Boobies
Breast Cancer Care UK

Don't forget to feel your boobies every month. Mark your calendar, sign up for monthly reminder emails, and remind your friends.  Early detection is our best defense.

I Run For Life 
lyrics by Melissa Etheridge

  • It's been years since they told her about it
  • The darkness her body possessed
  • And the scars are still there in the mirror
  • Everyday that she gets herself dressed
  • Though the pain is miles and miles behind her
  • And the fear is now a docile beast
  • If you ask her why she is still running
  • She'll tell you it makes her complete
  • [Chorus:]
  • I run for hope
  • I run to feel
  • I run for the truth
  • For all that is real
  • I run for your mother, your sister, your wife
  • I run for you and me, my friend
  • I run for life
  • It's a blur since they told me about it
  • How the darkness had taken its toll
  • And they cut into my skin and they cut into my body
  • But they will never get a piece of my soul
  • And now I'm still learning the lesson
  • To awake when I hear the call
  • And if you ask me why I am still running
  • I'll tell you I run for us all
  • [Chorus:]
  • I run for hope
  • I run to feel
  • I run for the truth
  • For all that is real
  • I run for your mother your sister your wife
  • I run for you and me my friend
  • I run for life
  • And someday if they tell you about it
  • If the darkness knocks on your door
  • Remember her remember me
  • We will be running as we have before
  • Running for answers
  • Running for more
  • I run for hope
  • I run to feel
  • I run for the truth
  • For all that is real
  • I run for your mother, your sister, your wife
  • I run for you and me my friend
  • I run for hope
  • I run to feel
  • I run for the truth
  • For all that is real
  • I run for your mother your sister, your daughter, your wife
  • For you and me my friend
  • I run for life
  • Ohohohoooh
  • I run for your mother your sister your wife
  • I run for you and me my friend
  • I run for life

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Sadie Skunk FREE Hand Embroidery Pattern

As promised, I would like to present to you, my crafty readers, Miss Sadie Skunk.  Sadie is the big sister of little Foxy Felix .  She is as sweet as a rose, but be careful.  She is known to put up a stink if she doesn't get her own way.
Sadie (and her brother) would be adorable stitched up on a onesie, diaper bag, wallhanging, quilt, pillow, or tshirt. 

 Sadie Skunk PDF Download

This is a PDF pattern.  You will need a PDF reader in order to view the file.  If you do not have one, you can download Adobe Reader for free HERE
If you prefer a JPG file, just leave a note in the comments with your email address, and I will send a copy to you.

This pattern is provided free for your personal use.  I do ask that you not sell items made with this pattern, or sell the pattern itself alone or as a part of a collection.  If you do wish to stitch it up and sell it for a nonprofit fundraiser, please contact me via email (see sidebar).  I am pretty easygoing with stuff like that.

If you create something with Sadie, I would love to see your work.  Drop me an email, leave a comment, or leave me a note on Flickr

French Flea Market Fantasy

Shabby chic is not my style.  I love it, but when it comes to decorating, I am drawn to a crazy eclectic mix of modern colors and somewhat masculine shapes.
Then along comes Etsy, and its wealth of vintage sellers who specialize in beautiful pieces rescued from the flea markets in France and around the world, and I fall in love.
Vintage chic without a ton of cabbage roses, romance without being syrupy sweet - I think these sellers have found a niche for people like me.

Today I want to introduce you to two such sellers.

Jackie, owner of Bliss Farm Antiques on Etsy has a lovely shop with vintage and upcycled finds of all kinds.
My favorite pieces from her shop:

from top:
Delicious antique French ribbon in soft blue and white.  Sold by the yard, I think this would be a lovely trim for a little girl's dress, or as a scrapbooking accent.

Vintage safety deposit boxes with key.  I love the naturally distressed paint and the faded numbers. This is both decorative and functional and would make a great gift box too.

The most amazing chaise ever! Recovered in French linen and German feed sack materials, and stuffed with down, this would make for the ultimate reading nook.

As a bonus for My Hiding Place readers, Jackie has kindly offered FREE shipping (within the USA) AND a packet of vintage French ephemera (could be champagne labels, French book pages, etc.).  Just mention My Hiding Place in Cyberspace in the Notes to Seller for the discount/bonus item.

The second seller I would like to introduce to you today is Cindy from Paris Treasures on Etsy. Her shop is shabby-fabulous! The vintage artwork is so beautiful. I especially love the Marie Antoinette style prints in the old frames. I was going to show off an incredible chandelier she had in the shop, but it sold - so only click that if you want to be jealous of its new owner.
Here are some of my favorite pieces that are still available in Cindy's shop.

From top:
A pair of vintage French Marie Antoinette style boudoir cameos in heavy plaster frames. These would be gorgeous in a dressing room.

An incredible 1900s slag glass and ornate iron lamp. Look at the detail in that perfectly aged base and shade. Swoon!

What shabby chic home would be complete without a princess rotary phone? Kids: this is what phones looked like back when I was young. We had to stand or sit near the phone because we were tethered to the wall by a coiled cord that would tangle, and you were always tempted to dump friends who had a lot of 9s in their phone number. Still, the style of the old phones cannot be beat.

Do you have a favorite source for your flea market treasures and vintage finds? Feel free to share in the comments below.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Foxy Felix Free Embroidery Pattern

As promised, here is the first of 2 new embroidery patterns in my new Kreepy Kids series.
Foxy Felix is usually a sweet, lovable boy who loves camping and roasting marshmallows...but be careful.  Felix can have a short temper, and that pointy stick looks dangerous!

 Click on pattern image to be taken to the free download location at Mediafire. You do not need to register.

You will need a PDF reader to view this file.  If you do not have a PDF reader, you can download Adobe Reader for FREE here

If anybody prefers to have the jpg version of this pattern, or if you have trouble with the download, just leave a comment below with your email address and I will email it to you within 48 hrs (probably MUCH sooner).

I love getting feedback  - it makes me want to keep designing patterns for my readers.  If you stitch up (or paint, color, etc) Foxy Felix, I would love to see it!  If you have suggestions for future patterns, please do not hesitate to share your ideas - it just may become the next freebie!

As always, my patterns are for personal use only.  Please do not sell items made using this pattern, or sell the pattern itself alone or as a part of a collection.  I welcome you to share this post on your blog, Facebook, Twitter, etc, but PLEASE link them to my blog and not directly to the download site.

Coming this weekend: Fabulous French Flea Market finds from 2 lovely Etsy shops PLUS Sadie Skunk, the second free pattern in the Kreepy Kids series.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Nine Years Ago Like Yesterday: In Memory of 9/11

I can hardly believe it has been nine year.  I can remember where I was and what I did with a clarity unlike any other memory. 
It seems like my generation has been peppered with the "where were you when...?" moments from the ugly disaster pages of a textbook.  Mount St. Helens.  The Challenger. Chernobyl. Rwandan Genocide. Andrew. Katrina. The Boxing Day Tsunami. Chinese Earthquake. Pakistan Flooding. Cyclone Nargis. Haitian Earthquake. 9/11.
After each tragic event - natural or man-made - people seem to forget their differences and unite.  Then, all too, soon the bonds start to fall apart and fingers start to be pointed.  Instead of accepting the tragedy for what it was and looking for a way to prevent it from happening again, we want to blame.
Left, right; black, white, Christian, Atheist, Jew, Muslim, rich, poor - our labels are defined.
Today, I would like us all to remember that there is only ONE label, and we all share it.
We are HUMAN.
Celebrate your humanity today in honor of those who lost their lives that sunny September morning.  Do something nice for a stranger without regard to their race, religion, sexual orientation, political opinions, or economic standing.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Giveaway WINNERS!

The Swan River Stone Jewelry Giveaway has ended.
It is now time to announce the lucky winners of Andrea's beautiful jewelry. was used to pick the winners, and today the random universe favored bookends, as our winners were among the very first and very last to enter the giveaway.

Winner #1 is a dear friend of mine (I swear it wasn't fixed - I never win ANYTHING on her blog).
AlwaysInspired of The Inspiring Adventures of Always Inspired, you get to first choice from the 3 lovely pieces.

Winner #2 is FellowRover from Under Moonbeams and Sunshine.
FellowRover, you will get to choose from the 2 remaining beautiful pieces.

I am about to email both of you to inform you of your wins.

I would like to thank Andrea of Swan River Stone for sharing her thoughts and talent with us for this giveaway.  You are a true gem (an Earth-friendly, non-conflict gem of course).
Thank you to all of my readers and followers old and new for popping in and checking out Swan River Stone.  I think you agree that she is fantastic.
If you are not one of the 2 lucky winners today, remember, the prices are great and the jewelry is beautiful - pick up a piece and reward yourself for doing something eco-friendly: recycling the soda cans, doing a cold-water laundry, riding a bicycle for transportation, using earth-friendly cleaning products, or even turning off lights and appliances when not in use (and yes, that means your computer too!).

Big hugs everyone, and Happy Labor Day weekend to my fellow Canadians and US neighbors.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Sadie Skunk

Don't forget: The Swan River Stone Jewelry Giveaway ends Sept 3.  You have 2 days left to enter. Click HERE to go to the giveaway post!

The second piece I designed and embroidered for lolablueocean in the Hoop Up! swap on Flickr is this gal, Sadie Skunk.

Sadie is the big sister of Foxy Felix, seen in my previous post.  Sadie is as sweet as a rose - most of the time. But watch out! You never know what will set her off.

Sadie Skunk is stitched in split, satin, seed and back stitches, and tinted with Koh-i-Noor Progresso pencils.

I will post my pattern for Sadie Skunk and her brother Foxy Felix here on my blog soon (I just need to clean up my sketches).

Monday, August 30, 2010

It's Monday.

Here for the Jewelry GIVEAWAY? Scroll down to the previous post. Remember - closes Sept 3!

It is crazy hot here today, with a humidex expected to reach over 40C (105F). I know I won't be upstairs long, as the mugginess will drive me to the air-conditioned bliss downstairs.

I just wanted to share a few things with my lovely readers.

First, a preview pic of the first piece I have completed for one of my partners (lolablueocean) in the Flickr Hoop Up embroidery swap.
Foxy is a sweet lil guy...sometimes.  That glint in his eye tells me that you MAY have to sleep with one eye open.  You could find yourself on the pointy end of his marshmallow-roasting stick!

Foxy started his life as a bear, but I soon discovered that I did not have the color I wanted to stitch him with.  I did have this lovely burnt orange color, so a few line changes and Voila! A fox he was!
I will be posting my original pattern for this piece here on my blog very soon - for free, of course.  Foxy also has a creepy-cute sibling who will also be posted.  She just needs a few touches added.

Next up, a photograph that just makes me smile.  This was staged and shot by my friend, AlwaysInspired. Looks like this lil fella was caught in a private moment. I had no idea that gnomes pooped glitter.  I will never look at my Stickles the same ever again!

And finally, I must share this video parody with you all.
I have watched it at least 10 times and it STILL makes me giggle and awwww.
It is a parody of the Eminem/Rhianna song/vid for Love the Way You Lie (which will NOT make you giggle & awwww).  The lyrics are so fun, and the little girl looks EXACTLY like my little niece Alyssa when she was 7 (so much so that I had my sis and Alyssa view the vid and they both freaked out)

best line: Did you just call me a doo-doo pie? That's all right. I know you are, but what am I?"

Friday, August 27, 2010

Swan River Stone (giveaway now closed)

Back in 2008, I was the lucky winner of a pair of gold teardrop loop and boro bead earrings from a blog giveaway.
The artisan, Andrea, was a fairly new Etsy seller.  Her shop NyBlaque was just getting off the ground.
I immediately adored the art and the artist.
Andrea's personal attention to her customers, her friendly nature, and her wonderful craftsmanship make her a perfect fit for the competitive jewelry category on Etsy.  She stands out and sparkles!

One year ago, Andrea opened a second jewelry shop, Swan River Stone.  Her she showcases beautiful eco-friendly jewelry made from vintage bits, nature, recycled metal and other lovely pieces.  She has also added a line of beautiful notecards to her shop.

Salvaged Twig and Batik Bead Earrings
I LOVE this new shop. The jewelry has a tribal feel without being cliche. Her peacock feather earrings are fantastic (and she even has a vegan feather option!). I had to show off a couple of my favorite pieces.

Sunset Tan and Blue Peacock Earrings

Andrea was kind enough to sit down and do a little Q&A for us.

You were having respectable success with your first (and still running) Etsy shop, NyBlaque. What made you decide to open a second jewelry shop on Etsy?

After now three years of selling online at Etsy. I have to say it is a two-fold experience. I have and I am STILL learning so much from fellow seller but mostly my customers. I am also still learning and have made mistakes but it is from them that I have learned the value of great customer service , communication and providing a quality product.

I think my Nyblaque shop is gaining the success level as far as sales as I have worked very hard to achieve, but is not without a lot of hard work and constant upgrading and researching.

You have to talk to your customers, engage them to talk to you but don't push them if they are not comfortable..then that is when I think you let your work speak for itself in order to gain their trust in you. But I must say the best compliments I have ever gotten is how much attention and effort I put into making my customers happy as best as I possibly can.

Of course, I can't please everyone and I have learned to accept that esp if I did my very best..but more often than not, I've received private notes and emails telling me privately and sometimes publicly how much they really appreciate the communication and care I have them in my work and service to them.

I opened a second shop because I am wanted to go in different direction now that I more eco conscious about our global eco systems. I know I cannot change the world but this path made me start to put my hands where my mind is and start creating jewelry that was more eco friendly, fair trade and even more organic and animal cruelty free minded with the materials I use. Even my packaging is going greener!From there I wanted to take old yet still good quality things and re purpose them into bags, accessories, home decor, paper goods and maybe when my skills are better, step at a time;-)

My second shop SwanRiverStone, is more that a pretty name it is a personal mantra: to keep the Grace(The Swan) of my humble beginnings both good and bad so that I always stay grounded,stay learning and improving. The Balance(The River) of life being a human being, a woman, a mom, a quiet activist caring about the environment and a businesswoman maintaining the dream of having my own. and the Strength to do it all with the best mental, spiritual and physical mind possible.

You are both a stay-at-home mom and a work-from-home. How do you balance your time between the two busy jobs and promoting your work?

I am BOTH!!I am a SWAHM( Single Work at Home Mom) It's hard enough running a home business being with a spouse or other family member of course..but raising two kids with a 12yr age gap is extremely difficult. For me, in order to make it work I run a STRICT time schedule-whether I want to or not! Until, I can hire additional help again. I only ship Mon-Fridays only- Devote my entire weekends and some holidays to whatever my family want to do. I wouldn't recommend this, but I run on 4hrs of sleep!
My schedule:
6am-7am Breakfast, meditation and exercise.
7-8am-Check/Answer Emails
8:30-Drop packages in mailbox if any.
8:45-12/1pm Time with toddler & teen( this is during summer vacation and holidays) but since my daughter is away at school this year, my son makes sure he gets ALL the attention LOL)

12-2pm Lunch and nap, Email check, Promote and chat;-) Maybe get some work in;-)
2-3-Picture taking--maybe?;-)
3-4 More Toddler/Teen Time
4-10pm Email Check/Dinner/Bath and Bed/Mail Packages/Mom& Daughter Time.
10pm-11pm- Quiet Mind Time for ME.
11-2am Listing, Promote, Blog,Chat, read then Sleep---PHEW

Ok..sometimes the schedule doesn't work that way esp with a now preschooler, but I try to keep it organized as close as possible.

I absolutely ADORE your new line, with the organic shapes and recycled materials. Where do you find inspiration to continually come up with new designs?

Thanks for the compliments! My inspiration have always been on the fly..they are never planned. It cam be from watching a movie like the Eowyn Necklace was inspired by LOTR. Or from rummaging through my grans old sewing box and finding some vintage fabric or broken jewelry I know she would love for me to make something with as she used to when she was alive. Or it could be nature's season changes, people, anything!.

Now for the part you have been waiting for:

What you can win:
Up for grabs we have the beautiful Eowyn Necklace with stonewear pendant on faux suede cord; the fabulous Hypnotize earrings (my favorite), and the lovely ire-wrapped with lampwork bead Cosmic Ring.

TWO winners names will be drawn.
The first winner will get to choose from these 3 gorgeous pieces. The second winner will then have their choice from the 2 remaining pieces.

HOW you can win:

Visit Swan River Stone and leave a comment on THIS blog post telling me which item from Andrea's eco-friendly  shop is your favorite (1 entry, mandatory).

Extra entries:

Become a follower of My Hiding Place In Cyberspace (button on the left sidebar), and leave a comment telling me that you are a follower. (1 entry)

Become a follower of Andrea's blog, Swan River Stone , come back and leave a separate comment here to let me know. (1 entry)

Write a post on your blog or Twitter, come back and leave a link to your blog post or tweet for an extra entry (1 per method)

Make a purchase from Swan River Stone, and leave a comment with a link to your transaction for TWO entries (leave 2 comments)

That is up to SEVEN chances to win!  Remember to leave a separate comment for each entry in order for it to count.

This giveaway is open to everyone worldwide, and will close one week from today, Friday September 3rd at 12noon EDT.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Giveaway starting Aug 27 HERE

Giveaway starting Aug 27 on my blog
Originally uploaded by digitalmisfit

I will be the lucky host of a jewelry giveaway from Swan River Stone starting this Friday. Here is a sneak peek at the goodies you could win.
Don't forget to come back and put your name into my virtual hat.

Monday, August 16, 2010

The Case of the THING - Update 2

Well I have still not heard back from Health Canada, so I do not know if they plan to test to find out what THING is or not.  The Ziploc baggie continues to store THING tissue samples in my freezer, and the bottle of fabric softener is still stashed under the sink.


I DID hear back from the corporate office of the retailer/manufacturer.  They sent me a $10 gift card to their store.  I felt that was a bit of a slap in the face - it is not like I wrote in saying that I didn't like the smell, or that my clothes weren't as fluffy as when I use the national brand.  I emailed them to let them know as much.
I quickly received a phone call from Lisa, the lovely agent I had spoken with previously.  She apologized for the gift card refund of $10.  She had seen the photos of THING and was pretty grossed out herself.  She went on to explain that they have had other issues with the fabric softener (no more THINGs, though).  The product had issues with thickening and consistency.  Evidently the actual manufacturer had changed the formula to include a higher concentration of guar gum which has been messing with the product.  They had done this without the authorization of the product owner/distributor.  Still no idea on how THING got in there, or what THING is, as there is no human contact in the production line, I am told.
The head office called for a pull of the product from store shelves until the formula is reworked.

Lisa and I chatted a bit about other products in the store brand family.  She was a very friendly and honest person.  She offered to send me an additional $75 in store gift cards for my inconvenience.  I accepted this offer as I found it to be fair compensation for the work it took to clean up after THING.

I will post another THING update if/when Health Canada makes up its mind.

Lovin' My New Blog Banner!

I recently won a giveaway over at Batzy RockShop blog for a custom blog makeover.  The lovely Victoria, who makes the most wonderful digital illustrations, designed my header and my blog button (see my right sidebar).  She worked with me to choose colors, style, and theme.  I wanted a curvy gal with long black hair, brown eyes and glasses wearing jeans and a tee, sitting and embroidering.  Look at the fabulous work she did!  I love it!

For those who already have my blog button linked on your blog, the image should automatically update as I put the new image in the same location as the old one on Photobucket.  She also designed a couple of extra buttons that I think are just great!

Check out Victoria's awesome work in her Etsy shop, Batzy  where you can get a custom pinup portrait, couples portrait, or even sign up for her online How To Draw Like A Rockstar class!

Thank you, Victoria, for being so patient, and for creating such a beautiful and fun banner!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Update on the Case of the THING

For those keeping abreast of the developments in my Case of the mystery THING , I have been contacted by Health Canada and spoke with a lovely agent by the name of Rosa.
Rosa forwarded me an Incident Report form to fill out which will go to the Ottawa offices.  With the completed form, I included the 2 photos featured in my previous blog post.

No callback from the manufacturer or corporate office today.

Will update with any new developments.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Eco-Friendly? Notsomuch!

Warning:  End of post contains some pretty disgusting photographs of a mysterious dead THING found in a grocery product.  Not for the squeamish.

I recently purchased a bottle of eco-friendly laundry fabric softener, store brand, from a major grocery chain.  I immediately fell in love with the heady sweet lavender fragrance (100% essential oils!), and the fluffy softness of my linens.
I found the consistency to be quite strange - like that of a hand cream or heavy hair conditioner.  As it was a brand that was new to me, I didn't think much of it.

Then a few nights ago, I encountered a large wolf spider momma with a bazillion babies on her back.  I did not realize this until I swatted said spider, and hundreds of tiny wee spiders exploded out onto the bathmat.  I reacted by swatting and swatting and freaking out just a lil bit.  I carried the bath mat outside so any living spiders could escape, and so I would not have to deal with it (it was 2am).
The next day, my adorable 71 yr old mother decided to launder the bath mat for me using my gorgeous eco friendly fabric softener.
I went about my morning as usual, checking emails and online forums until I heard Mom call from downstairs "Ummmm...Heidi...there is something a lot more icky than the spider here...come look in the washer"

I went downstairs, expecting some kind of earwig or other nasty crawly thing to appear.  I wish!
In the washing machine fabric softener dispenser was a dead...THING.  I do not know exactly WHAT it may have been, only that I expect that it was a mammal.  It had no fur nor bones.  A brownish sludge coated the dispenser and washer basin (where Mom had dropped the THING after discovering it).  The THING was about the size of a small mouse or mole, without a tail.  It kinda looked like the bag of guts you find inside the cavity of a turkey, but without the bag. 
I immediately ran upstairs to get my camera as this is not something that can simply be described in words.  I snapped a few pics, all the while trying not to lose my breakfast.  I have a very weak stomach for such things (not that this such thing has ever happened before, but any seriously gross stuff makes me ill).
I went back upstairs to locate the corporate contact information for the grocery chain and/or manufacturer of the product.  While I did this, my mother actually disposed of the THING in the toilet.  I don't blame her one bit.  I managed to reserve a tissue sample from inside the dispenser, and I have saved the almost-full bottle of fabric softener.
I emailed the corporate office, but was too freaked out to wait for a reply.  I phoned the customer care number.  I gotta give the phone agent credit for maintaining a calm, even tone and professional manner - you KNOW she has never had to deal with this kind of thing before.  She advised me that she would forward my information to the quality assurance department as well as the corporate office.  She said that they would reimburse me for the product (ummm..really? I deal with this kind of mess and I will get $3.79  back?).

On a brief trip to the grocer (for unrelated food products) that afternoon, I stopped by the laundry care aisle to check on that same brand of fabric softener.  It was a different batch number.  The solution was watery, as most fabric softeners are.  Whatever the THING was in my bottle is what caused it to turn into a thick, pasty solution.  Upon my return home, there was a message on my answering machine from the grocery corporate office.  They had advised that I should contact the Food Inspection Agency to determine what the THING was, and that they will continue their investigation on their end as well.  My phone call to the FIA led nowhere, as they only deal with edible items.  A Google search led me to Health Canada, which seems to have concerns with household chemicals.  I left a message on their voicemail.  I hope to hear back from them on Monday.  The small tissue sample is secure in a Ziploc freezer bag in the freezer door, and the product bottle is in the shed (so it doesn't get used by accident).

Everything that had been washed with the stuff now needs rewashing.  The worst part?  I had made some homemade Febreze with it, and now my home is spritzed with lavender scented THING carcass juice.

I will post an update after Health Canada or the grocery corporate office contacts me.

Here are a couple of photos of the THING. 

THING in mug after being removed from dispenser.  That is my Mom's thumb covered in the sludge.
mug, spoon, and ALL items that came into contact with the THING have been disposed of.

main part of THING
Washing machine dispenser coated in the sludge:

Thursday, July 8, 2010

NSFW - Follow the White...errrr...Silver Glittery Rabbit!

Warning: Sex Toy Review Ahead.
For those who are shocked and muttering "but this is a CRAFT blog!", no it isn't.  It is MY blog, and I happen to enjoy crafting...and sex toys.

Ok, now let me say that this review post is WAY overdue!
When I was approached a couple of months ago by Eden Fantasys, asking if I would be interested in reviewing one of their adult toys, I jumped at the opportunity.  A woman cannot have too many battery-operated friends, and I am always happy to expand my small but loved collection.

The toy I selected was a dazzling vibrating rabbit with the boring name "Rotating G spot rabbit".  The fabulous clear, glitter-filled rotating shaft with vibrating rabbit more than makes up for its uninspired name.

  I am quite impressed with this toy. 
  I also think that this MAY be the "disco stick" that Lady Gaga was talking about.

product picture
G-spot and clitoral vibrator  by Orion
Material: TPE
        This product was provided free of charge to the reviewer.

The shaft itself was a little larger than I had expected, but that is really the only negative thing I can say about it - and some may consider that a huge benefit (pun kinda intended).  I love that the shaft has a modern, clean appearance, and does not resemble a disembodied penis.  Those vibes always kinda creep me out.
Double-plus bonus points for its cool, silver & clear glitter (so many seem to just come in pink or purple).
The base has a non-metal chrome finish with easy-to-use lighted control pad.

The rotation and vibration functions each have 3 settings, from ho-hum to toe-curling fun.  Not into clockwise action? The rotating action in the shaft can be reversed for those who have a counter-clockwise preference (I really wouldn't know the difference myself, but hey, to each her own, and this vibe has it!).
The vibrating rabbit has long, soft, flexible ears that actually reach their target.  This is my favorite part, and has helped place this toy at the top of my go-to stash.
The curved, nubby head of the shaft is intended for G-spot stimulation, but I didn't experience this.  I doubt this is the fault of the toy as my cervix is tilted, making everything just a little out of place on the inside (too much info? ahh hell, this is a sex toy review - wtf did you expect?!)

Operating on 3 AA batteries (easy to remove/replace), this is the FIRST vibrator I have had where I did not need to change the batteries for every use - and I use the cheapskate batteries!  This sparkly bunny packs a lot of power without taking too much juice!
I have to mention the other best part - the sound.  Or rather, the LACK of sound.  Seriously, the vibration setting - even on high - is practically silent.  The rotation function makes a SLIGHT noise that would not be audible from behind a closed door.  Quietest fun you will ever have!

The Rotating G spot rabbit is easy to clean, requiring only mild soap and water, or some fantastic sex toy wipes like Afterglow.  The TPE (a safe, soft, rubbery,  latex-and-phthalate-free thermoplastic compound) should not be disinfected with boiling water, so use of condoms is suggested for those who share their toys.  I don't share, so I have never had to put the bunny in a jacket.  This toy can be used with either silicone or water-based lubricants.   It is a waterproof vibe for those who are interested in some bathtime fun (or who like taking long walks on the beach).

Overall:  I highly recommend this vibrator for anyone who wants a quality rabbit vibe that is quiet but powerful.  It is much less expensive than rabbits with similar functions, yet outperforms any I have used in the past.  Eden Fantasys offers a fabulous selection and excellent customer service.  Billing is discreet.  Your toys will arrive in plain packaging so your mail person need never know what is going on behind closed doors.  If you have any problem with your new toys, Eden Fantasys offers no-hassle returns and exchanges (because who really wants to haggle over a faulty butt plug?).

Stay tuned for a CRAFTY blog post of the fun storage box I made for this new toy! Gotta love combining sex toys and crafting!

ed note: The vibrator featured in this review was provided to me by Eden Fantasys at no cost.  I was not compensated for the review.  Eden Fantasys encourages HONEST reviews as a part of their excellent customer service.  The opinions stated here are my own.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Heat Wave

My apologies for the delay in the post I promised.
Insane heat wave has been keeping me away from my computer for more than a few minutes at a time. The temperature has been hitting 39C (that is 102F for my American friends) of pure humidity. These upstairs rooms are at least 10C hotter than the air outside, so you can imagine it is pretty sick.
I can practically CHEW the air up here, so I have been staying downstairs where the air conditioner has made life livable.
I really hope the heat and humidity break soon. My new bed is scheduled to arrive on the 13th, and I am hoping to start sewing some accents for the room (curtains, pillows, etc).
I think it is time for a Fudgesicle!

Hope to do a real post soon!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

I'm BACK + Free Kitchen Goddess Embroidery Pattern

Kitchen Goddess Embroidery Pattern
Originally uploaded by digitalmisfit

After a LONG hiatus from blogging, I am back!
A combination of poor health, new medication, and - I will admit - pure laziness has kept me away from my hiding place in cyberspace. I am doing well now, and I hope to make regular posts once again and reconnect with my fabulous readers old and new.

With this first update, I will be releasing my first new hand embroidery pattern, which is the second in my Domestic Goddess series (see this post for my Crafty Goddess pattern).
This Kitchen Goddess was inspired by a new friend from the pagan community. She was in a bit of a tizzy, preparing a dinner one day, so the quote on this particular pattern was her exclamation when she was asked how she has been. We have all had those days where something small just gets in the way of a perfect day, and I think she expressed it perfectly!

Of course, this chef hat and apron adorned Goddess can be stitched up without the quote if you prefer.
I think it would make a lovely gift, stitched up on a tea towel for your favorite kitchen witch, or framed for your favorite chef.
You could even woodburn it into a cutting board for a decorative and practical piece.

Just click on the image to be taken to my Flickr photostream where you can download the file (for best resolution, select Original or Large image size. If you have the new Flickr layout, you will find this option under Actions). If you stitch it up, drop me a note or post it on Flickr with a note so I can see what my crafty friends have been up to. I welcome your comments and suggestions for future Domestic Goddess designs.

As always, this pattern is provided free for your personal use. Please do not sell this pattern or items made using this pattern. You are welcome to post about this pattern on your blog, Facebook, Twitter, etc providing you include a link back to this blog post.

Stay tuned for this weekend's blog update which will include a totally NSFW review of a new toy from my favorite adult toy store, Eden Fantasys !

Friday, May 7, 2010

Happy 50th to The Pill

Today celebrates the 50th birthday of The Pill. Though it has gone through many formula changes over the past half-century, its purpose remains the same: to give women the CHOICE. Mothers no longer had to choose between celibacy or having a reality-show-worthy brood of children. Single women could now have a sex life without fear of an unwanted pregnancy (though it should be noted that it was extremely difficult for unmarried women to obtain a prescription until 1972).
I cannot think of any other single invention that opened up so many possibilities for humans born with a uterus and ovaries.

So, Pill, in honor of your contributions to the advancement of gender equality, I leave you with this song written and performed by Ms Loretta Lynn (quite a controversial song in its day)

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Embroidery Pattern Poll!

I am thrilled with the response my Crafty Goddess free hand embroidery pattern has received. I have to thank Denise at CraftGossip for featuring my pattern on their needlework thread.
My blog traffic reports show a sudden and LARGE influx of visitors from France. I welcome my French friends! I had to find out where they were coming from. As it would happen, Crafty Goddess was posted on Cathy16's blog and the Friendstitch blog. Thanks for the mention, mes amis!

I am trying to decide which free embroidery pattern to post next. I have put up a poll on the top right of my sidebar. Please take a second and vote for your favorite theme. I will post the "winning" pattern at the end of the week.

Monday, February 15, 2010

OWOH 2010 Winner!

I want to thank all of you who participated and visited during the One World One Heart blog event.
I had such a great time meeting so many of you, and I made it around to ALMOST all of the blogs (no easy task with over 1100 of you!).

Entries for my giveaway closed at midnight last night, and I have already contacted the winner.
So without further adieu, the winner is.....
drumroll please.....

Paula of On A Rainy Night

Paula, I hope you enjoy your new embroidered art.


Friday, February 12, 2010

Crafty Goddess - Free Embroidery Pattern

I have always enjoyed doodling, so it was only natural that I incorporate that love into embroidery design.
I have been working on several original hand embroidery patterns which I will be sharing with my bloggy friends.
This first pattern is one of my favorites.
Crafty Goddess was created when I could not find anything similar online. I love goddess imagery, and I am a crafty girl :)

To Download this pattern, click THIS LINK to go to the Flickr page where you can select All Sizes and download the Large version. Save to your computer and print!

My fabulously crafty friend Deana (aka Always Inspired) stitched her up for her partner in the Hoop Up! embroidered quilt square swap on Flickr. She used her partner's choice of colors, and I think it turned out beautifully for her partner's theme of sewing. The metallic threads used for the scissors and needle just pop!

I would love to see your versions of Crafty Goddess, so if you stitch her up, leave a comment or send me a message on Flickr or Craftster.

Crafty Goddess is a free design, but I do ask that you use my patterns for personal use only (that includes for swaps and gifts), and not to sell items made with this pattern, or to offer the pattern for sale in paper or digital format.

If the response to this pattern is positive, I will be posting more hand embroidery designs in the coming weeks, including a Geisha and a Frida Kahlo doll.

Monday, January 25, 2010

One World One Heart 2010 CLOSED! winner will be announced Feb 15th

Welcome to my stop on the One World One Heart 2010 blog event!
Roll up your magic carpet and have a cup of chai.

I would love to thank Lisa for hosting OWOH for a fourth year. I first hopped on board last year and I had a wonderful time visiting ALL 911 participating blogs.
For those who would like more info, you can find out more about OWOH and its simple goal of global fun and friendship on Lisa's blog, A Whimsical Bohemian

Each blog on the magic carpet route will be hosting a giveaway for some kind of treasure, but you do NOT need to be a participating blogger to enter.

I will be giving away this hand embroidered & embellished original art piece.
The Key to the Future (lies in the past) is a piece I embroidered last autumn. She was the second piece of embroidery I had ever done.
Sadly, she hid in a drawer filled with other stitched pieces, vintage fabrics, and assorted treasures until now.

OWOH seemed like the perfect occasion to bring this wistful sepia-tone maiden out of her confines. The piece is finished with antique Venice lace (scored at a local church basement sale!), vintage doily lace and buttons, aged key, hand-rouched fabrics, and a sweet felted heart. Finished piece measures approx 8x10 inches (20 x 25cm) excluding hanging loops (for dowel or even a cool stick!) and heart. I do hope you like her. She was a joy to stitch up, and I will miss seeing her in my treasure drawer.

My giveaway will begin today, and close February 15th at 12:01am, with the winner(s) names announced later that same day. Giveaway open to everyone worldwide
All you need to do is leave a comment on THIS post. I would love to know where you are visiting from. Please do not forget to leave some kind of contact info in case you are the winner (email, twitter or craftster name will be great, or just let me know that your contact info is on your blog if you are using Blogger).
Winner(s) will have 48 hrs to reply to me using their chosen form of communication. If a reply is not received, a new winner will be chosen. All winners will be selected using, my favorite random number generator.

Hugs and love to all of my lovely guests on this wonderful magic carpet ride!
Now enjoy your journey along this route of fantastic blogs.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Out with the Naughties! Happy New Decade!

Happy 2010 to all of my lovely blog friends.
Cheers to a healthy and prosperous new year to each one of you.