Monday, July 29, 2013

What Does Your Bag Say About You?

While waiting in the doctor's office for my name to be called, I decided to explore the contents of my handbag. Like the backseat of my car or under the cushions of our sofa, I never know what junks or treasures I will find. I thought by sharing a little bit about my favorite bag and what is in it, you'll get to know me better. Of course, I'm keeping the embarrassing stuff to myself!

First, I'd like to show you my bag.


I picked up this bag for a couple of dollars at a garage sale a few years ago. It says I'm cheap! It was almost brand new and I liked the neutral color, the zillion pockets, the wipe clean surface and the crossbody strap. I am practical. Since then I found out that this bag is a Giani Bernini leather bag that the original owner probably purchased at Macy's. Keeping up with the Joneses. This bag has become my "traveling with the kids" bag because of it's size and it's easy to pay for that pebbly Dippin' Dots Moose Tracks / Bubble Gum "ice cream" with my purse still on my shoulder. I get distracted and lose things easily. I also don't like Dippin' Dots.

It turns out that the many compartments does not help to keep me organized but serves as a great place to stow receipts, notes and what-nots. Now a peek into my treasure chest. Nearly all of these mementos are from an East Coast tour I took with my daughter and her classmates back in the spring.


Ticket stubs for the U.S. Capitol Tour in Washington D.C. on April 12, 2013. This ticket is special because Daniel Inouye's name is printed on the stub. Daniel Inouye is a former U.S. Senator from Hawaii. He passed away in December 2012. Our tour guide told us that these were the last tickets printed with Mr. Inouye's name on it. To think that I had this squashed in my bag...oh my!


Ticket stubs for the Independence Hall Tour, Pennsylvania. April 14, 2013.


Ticket stubs for Newsies at the Nederlander Theater in New York City, April 15, 2013. Loved, loved that play! As exhausted as I was, I did not take a nap during the show. I was thoroughly entertained during the entire performance!

This last find is more recent and it's another ticket stub. 


Tickets to Footloose, presented by Ohana Arts at the Mamiya Theatre, Honolulu, July 27, 2013. My children had classmates performing in this play. It was a wonderful performance and such a joy to see the kids sing and dance like professionals! 

I guess I have a ticket stub problem but a lot of memories can be found in ticket stubs...don't you think so? Now to find a safe place for these keepsakes. I can't think of anywhere safer than...my bag.

Tell me about your bag, what's in it and what do you think it says about you?

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Coupon Code at DIY Pattern & Charm Shop

xsugarhuix of DIY Pattern & Charm Shop, Etsy, is generously offering a 5% discount to my blog readers. Isn't that so sweet! DIY shop has a wide selection of charms and craft supplies. Read the shop announcement for more special offers.

image of DIY Pattern and Charm Shop etsy banner

Here is Sugar's message to me and the coupon code details:

To support your shop and blog, all of your fans can have 5% discount for purchase over USD5 (exclude shipping fee) from my shop. Just simply use coupon code "PANDAFAN" (valid before Aug 31 2013)

You can see Sugar's Panda so cute treasury in yesterday's blog post, A New Beginning with Puka Panda.

Thank you Sugar and happy shopping everyone! Enjoy your weekend!

Friday, July 26, 2013

A New Beginning with Puka Panda

Thank you everyone for providing me feedback about my Etsy shop's new name, Bead Crumbs. 99% of the comments were positive. Sticking to the house rule, "If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all.", my husband kept his opinion to himself and grunted.

Panda logo for Bead Crumbs shopI'm so excited...it's like a new beginning! I'm going to continue to use my beaded panda as my logo because it is the most requested item in my shop. Did you know my panda has a name? Her name is Puka Panda. Puka means hole is Hawaiian. Puka Panda is made of seed beads with many tiny pukas and because I prefer to spend my money on beads rather than new clothing, I wear puka puka clothes. And so, Puka Panda!

To my blog friends and panda fans everywhere, here is a cute treasury for you. Appropriately titled, Panda so cute, this collection is curated by xsugarhuix. Thank you for including my panda pattern in your treasury.



Here is what I want from xsugurhuix's shop. 

photo of washi tape for shop xsugarhuix

Thanks so much for stopping by today. Have a great Friday and enjoy your weekend.

So I am wondering, how did you come up with your blog or shop's name? What meaning do you have behind it? I'd love to hear from you!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Back to School Doldrums

So who is looking forward to the new Fall school year? Right now the mood in our home is a little oppressive. I attribute this feeling to the humid weather and the end of summer break. I call it the back to school doldrums and it feels a bit like this poem from The Rime of the Ancient Mariner by Samuel Taylor Coleridge. 

poem The Rime of the Ancient Marine

It is that in-between time. The carefree summer days will soon be over. We spent this week shopping and gathering school supplies. It's too early for back to school jitters but the impending feeling of doom is here. As the first day of school approaches, the energy will pick up and the kids will be buzzing about full of nervous activity. Right now we're a home of overstuffed sausages slowly sizzling in the summer heat and soon we will burst out with a BANG! Wish you could be here for the clean-up!

(Just wanted to say thank you for the feedback on my name change. I'm glad it got your approval. Once I get my craft area organized, I hope to get back to bead weaving. Thanks again!)

Monday, July 22, 2013

My Bead Crumbs are Your Sugar


Well, that's my hope!


I finally did it! After months and months of misery over my Etsy shop name, HandmadeCute, I finally made a change. In October of 2011, Etsy announced that shop owners were allowed to make a one time name change on their account. I was excited about this and felt it would not hurt my shop status if I made the change but I couldn't decide on a new name. I put that thought aside thinking I would do it when I was running low on business cards.

It happened. My business card supply is low. Time to do some serious brain-storming for names.

I was thinking along these lines...We have two cats. One is named Molly Meow Kitty and the other is
named Bella Smella Flower. Our dogs are named Poochy Pup Pie and Daisy May Sundae. HandmadeCute is just sooo boring. So do you see the direction I was heading into?

For weeks I'd suggest a name to the family but after days of shouting out a name during the middle of dinner, a t.v. show, a walk to the park, etc., (never knew when a good name might pop up), I was becoming a nuisance. I was ignored! I started changing the names on my social networking accounts (Twitter, Pinterest...) to see how a name idea "felt".  I don't think that affected me much because I don't have much of a brand presence but if you happened to have noticed, thank you for sticking with me during my identity crises.

To make a long story short, all good names have been taken by very clever people. It's been a frustrating experience.

During one of my "shout it out" moments, I hollered, BEAD CRUMBS! and I got an "I like it". The name was not taken on Etsy, so now it belongs to me. Hooray! The change is not clean cut- it didn't quite transfer over to all of the others sites that I have set up, such as this blog, so those will remain the same.

"Bead Crumbs" is a title that still allows me to make silly, goofy, nonsensical charms and stories about purples pandas and such so I'll have fun with it.

If you have a minute or two to spare, I'd be so thankful if you could read my Jayne's Profile entry and About BeadCrumbs and let me know what you think of my changes.

As always, thank you so much. I'm sending bead hugs your way. Bead hugs = bear hugs...get it?

Friday, July 19, 2013

I Love Your Smile Gift Announcement


Malfunctioning top commenter widgetAnd the top commenter gift goes to Stephanie, Crazy little Love birds


I'm announcing the "I Love Your Smile" gift recipient earlier than expected because I'm having trouble with the top commenter widget. It hasn't been working properly for the past few days and I haven't been able to set it right. Rather than going prematurely gray over the glitch, I'm taking it down and I thank you very much for participating!

The original plan was to tally your comments for June, July and August but as you can see from the photo on the right, something is definitely wrong! 

Based on last week's comment count plus additional comments received during this past week, the appreciation gift goes to Stephanie. Stephanie, you can select anything you want from my shop, http://HandmadeCute.Etsy.com, and please email me with your choice. I haven't been very creative lately but hopefully you will be able to find something that you like.

Thanks so very much for taking the time to visit me and comment on my posts.  

Have a fun, fun Friday and enjoy the upcoming weekend - I'd love to know what you're planning for the weekend!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

On Becoming a Successful Blogger

image source
As part of my Etsy Journey chit-chat, I post about things I learn as I try to improve my craft shop, http://HandmadeCute.Etsy.com. This summer I wanted to get a basic understanding of Search Engine Optimization (SEO). I decided to educate myself with SEO because I spend a fair amount of time on my computer as a blogger, consumer and shop owner. It made sense to do this with a little bit of knowledge. While I know I will never understand the nuts and bolts of how a computer and the world wide web works, I do not want to be in a constant fog of bewilderment. 

Unfortunately, learning SEO is even more difficult than I imagined it to be. I found the terminology scary even when re-worded in the most elementary form. I won't even attempt to explain what I've been reading but I do know there are mistakes that I've made in the past with my blog and Etsy site and it will be time consuming to correct...if I want to pursue that path.

In the meantime, I am fascinated with the resources available on Google Webmaster Tools. The one mentioned below helped me find duplicate title tags on my blog. To try it, you will need an account with Google and should have a site listed and verified. Although I had one set up some time ago, I did not take the time to look through the features until recently. (There is a Webmaster Tool Help link on Google to guide your through the setup.)

*Select your site (My site is http://handmadecuties.blogspot.com)
*Go to "Search Appearance"
*Click on "HTML Improvements"
*Under the menu of items, I chose to look at "Duplicate Title Tags" because I wanted to start with something easy.
*During the period that my website was crawled, it showed that I had 12 blog titles that were the same (hmmm...can you guess what it is? Hint: my Friday posts).

The recommendation is to update my title tags with something more applicable and concise that will aid readers spot useful information and help with search engiine rankings.

I am always excited to get new and returning blog visitors and know that blog writers work hard at doing this! For me it has always been a fun pastime but maybe with a little more dedication I can be a successful blogger like you! Even if you blog as a hobby, I think you'll find these Google web features useful.

For my Etsy shop, I found this easy to understand article with simple exercises: 2 Shop Stats Exercises to Increase Your Traffic.

As always, I appreciate your visit and will humbly take any advice you are willing to share on how to become a better blogger.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Lun Lun and Her Twins

Did you hear the wonderful news? Two itty bitty but noisy babies were born to Lun Lun (mommy) and Yang Yang (daddy) at Zoo Atlanta on Monday, July 15. Wishing the new family safe and healthy thoughts! You can visit Zoo Atlanta's Panda Cam and Panda Update pages to find out more about these little cuties. Adorable!



Tuesday, July 16, 2013

A Chance of Summer Snow

Sometimes we have freaky weather here in Hawai'i. Thunder storms, floods and hurricanes happen but when there is a report of hail or a tornado touching down, well that is just weird. You may hear me grumbling about the heat and humidity but these are great days to hit the beach and cool off like we did yesterday. If someone ever tells me that there is a chance of snow in my part of the neighborhood, I can guarantee that you will see me sitting outside on a lawn chair waiting to catch the first snowflake. Until that happens, I am happy to announce that the cool summer savings are still going on with the Christmas in July sale on Etsy.

Here are a few finds...

by umeone

photo of Vintage Wooden Corner Shelf by umeone
Thank you umeone for featuring my Santa Claus Seed Bead Pendant/Charm in your Let it Snow...treasury.


photo of Fun in the Sun Button Cluster Bib Necklace by Crazy Button Design13

Mahalo to Rebecca for including my Seed Bead Lime Charm in your whimsical fruit fun treasury. 

To enjoy more of these great products and savings, please click on the links above.
Have a great day!


Friday, July 12, 2013

I Love Your Smile!

"Every time you smile at someone, it is an action of love, a gift to that person, a beautiful thing." 
~Mother Theresa

Thank you so much for sharing you smile with me!

Crazylittlelovebirds

Crazy little Love birds
Stephanie

Creations by Shirl
Shirl

ChatterBlossom
Jamie

2 just B you
Kim

thistlebear
Jennifer

...and a belated Thank You to SassySashadoxie for including me in your "Stripes and Stars" Treasury.

Water Beach Doxie Dachshund Card
by SassySashadoxie

Have a wonderful Friday and a great weekend!

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"I LOVE YOUR SMILE" list : Comments are tallied each week by one of those fancy-schmancy blog apps (on the side bar) and on Fridays, I link up to the top 5 commentors. Although I don't list everyone, I do appreciate all of you so thank you, thank you everyone for your support. I hope you leave a comment and come back soon!

I'm tallying up your comments (June - August). The top smiley commentor will receive a goody! Check out where you rank on the side bar...


Thursday, July 11, 2013

Christmas in July

Come to my home for Christmas. Imagine...a lopsided tree covered haphazardly with gaudy red garland, overwhelmed with colorful foam ornaments made at school (handprints, stars, animals...) and beautiful heirloom trinkets tucked in here and there. The smell of coffee and cinnamon rolls linger in the morning air that is still cool from the overnight rain. A new island is forming on the dining room table. It is made up of wrapping paper, ribbons and holiday cards to be sent. I am tripping and grumbling about the gifts that are scattered about on the living room floor ~ peekers I presume. Thank goodness for Christmas in July (CIJ) on Etsy...at least some of the holiday shopping and wrapping is complete.

Although I love shopping for gifts, I often feel guilty for indulging so Christmas is a whoop-dee-doo fantastic time of year for me...but, I still end up doing last minute desperation purchases. If you're anything like me, now is a great time to browse, gather ideas and make lists. You may even want to start your shopping to take advantage of the superb Christmas in July bargains on Etsy. The CIJ specials are on now through July 21. Just type in "CIJ" or "christmasinjuly" on the Etsy search bar to start your adventure. Here are a few items that I've added to my shop to ease you into the fervor of the holidays. All products in this section are marked down by 5% and you can combine your savings with the coupon codes listed here.


Handmade Cute Etsy

Click here to view all the items.

Here are a couple of my favorite Christmas in July finds.

I love this One of a Kind Beach Scene with VB Bug, Lounge Chair, Shells, Paper Umbrellas and Bone China Dog and think it would make a great gift for those who would rather be at the beach during the winter.

umeone etsy

Shop at umeone
Pottery and vintage treasures

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This is such a pretty Vintage Sterling Stars Brooch with Gold-washed Accents. It's simple but elegant and would be great for the astronomy buff, a co-worker, auntie or me!  

Betsy's Bijoux Etsy
Beautiful vintage charms and jeweled delights

I hope you have a chance to do some early shopping so you can relax a bit more during the hectic holiday season.  Have fun!


Jayne
Come Imagine With Me!
*****

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Our Silly Kitty!

 




Monday, July 8, 2013

Gift Ideas with Summer Prices

When the summer sun is melting your rainbow shave ice with ice cream and azuki beans, just imagine it's a snowy Christmas day with great prices but no crazy holiday shopping rush. If you need a little help getting started, please let me share with you these super cool Etsy Treasury collections with wonderful gift ideas.

Treasury: Christmas in JULY!
Curated by Deb Babcock of Blue Sky Pottery CO.
Handmade pottery and ceramics
Deb featured my Seed Bead Lime Charm



Wire Forming 1.5 to 11mm Min...
$7.5

Christmas Baby Owl Hat Photo...
$25

Poinsettia Table Runner, Hol...
$59

Scrabble Tile Christmas Orna...
$12

CIJ SALE 20% OFF - Green Lea...
$22.4

Baby/Toddler Rag Blanket/Qui...
$55

Heart Shaped Vase, Zen Decor...
$39.95

Seed Bead Lime Charm, Zipper...
$4.25

Onesie and Bow Tie Onesie Se...
$16

A "NO TRESPASSING"...
$35

Original Mixed Media Abstrac...
$26

CIJ, 20% OFF Flower Photogra...
$8

Christmas Earrings Candy Can...
$12

Bigonia Catalpa, vintage ill...
$8.9

2 Yards Christmasinjuly Red ...
$1.75

Christmas in July - CIJ - Wr...
$25

Here is just one of my favorites from Blue Sky Pottery CO
Save 15% on your purchase when you use the coupon code CHRISTMASINJULY in the link provided when you check out on Blue Sky Pottery Co., Etsy.
Blue Sky Pottery Co.

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Treasury: as white as white can get...in summer
Curated by Annelies Knijnenburg of Liz Art
Art made by Liz: paintings, drawings, cards
Liz featured my Beaded Star Ornaments

CiJ / Dalmation Brooch - Lap...
$8

CIJ, Summer Beach, Shell Pho...
$15

CIJ White Paisley - Printed ...
$15

CIJ Druk Glass Star Ornament...
$4

CIJ SALE White Heart Ceramic...
$16

CIJ sale Linen napkin cloth ...
$54

White Shabby Cottage Beaded ...
$19

CIJ, 25% OFF, Children decor...
$15

Christmas in July Sale White...
$8.25

CIJ Christmasinjuly Cream Wh...
$20

CIJ 25 OFF - White star latt...
$9

CiJ / White Damask Pearlized...
$15

White Rose. Snow Rose Ring. ...
$13

CIJ 10% Off// Vintage Dress ...
$57

White Flower Ceramic Plate ...
$16

CIJ, 25% OFF, Cat photograph...
$15

Here is a set of original handmade cards by Liz Art that caught my attention. I love the dark silhouette against the white "snow" background. 


Liz Art
I hope you enjoyed today's Etsy Treasuries. Thank you so much to Deb Babcock and Annelies Knijnenburg  for featuring my beadwork in your collection. Please stop by their shops and find your favorite item!

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