Friday, January 30, 2009

Handmade Valentine's Day

So, I was thinking about Valentine's Day, which makes sense, but I was thinking that I have no clue what I'm doing for the boy! I feel bad because he deserves a lot, but I don't have a lot to give. However, I have a strong opinion that handmade is the way to go, and I know he likes that anyways.

So I'm trying to think....I will surely make him a card, and I must make it extra special. Then what? He's not much for candy, and he's one of those "purpose" people. He likes for things to serve a function or have a use. I'm pretty sure we were going to make lasagna (may not be a romantic food to most, but it's like our anniversary dish...I made it the first Valentine's Day we were together, couldn't cook well then...not much better now)

Here's the list so far:

hmm...needs something else. But what? I have some ideas brewing, but nothing amazing yet. If you think of any, let me know:)

What are your plans for Valentine's Day?

Rachel May

Lookin' Good

I'm so proud of this.

Thursday, January 29, 2009


Doing some interesting stuff for Etsy today, besides the stuff I posted earlier. Part of me thinks that I like all aspects of crafts and want my Etsy site to reflect that, and part of me thinks that will confuse people. And be hard to restock.

I think I'm going to narrow my focus, besides requests if people have them. Soon I will be working on a baby blanket for a baby shower gift, should be interesting. But I think Etsy is going to be aimed towards papergoods.

That's going to be my store. Love the jewelry, but there's a lot of intense jewelry competition on Etsy and I keep teaching people how to make it, so the demand for jewelry made by me is diminishing-lol.

I feel good about this-more focused. And soon you will see what I've cooked up today. Once I get it in the mail:)

Something to think about.

Rachel May

New and Improved!

So, I got to thinking about the EcoBooks, because they have consumed my life (I love, love, love them). I was thinking about the eco-friendliness and the users, and I have made large improvements to the EcoBooks.

I started a new line: EcoBooks SkEtCh. The new and improved part comes in probably in one of those places that nobody thinks about, but I'll explain that element in a minute. The cool thing (for users) about the EcoBook SkEtCh line is that it is a super heavy paper, so you can write in ink or pencil or whatever and it shouldn't bleed through. It also makes a good weight of notepad, feeling more durable and substantial without being bulky.

The OTHER improvement:
I changed the glue. I'm now using a water-based non-toxic glue. I was really excited, because I know that adhesive is one of the tricky parts to making stuff green and eco-friendly. Now what's great about this glue is that it seals in the handmade paper cover and back so that you don't have to worry about durability, and it keeps everything together. It also offers endless design possibilities as now I can create patterns on the handmade paper if I want to.

I felt as though this was a great move and hope the EcoBooks catch on soon. It's a great product if I do say so myself.


Rachel May

Monday, January 26, 2009

Laundry Day

I was busy getting stuff done today. I wrote a To-Do List, stuck with it, and completed it. It feels very rewarding. The last load of laundry is in the dryer, the bed is made, the dishes done, the carpet vacuumed.

Now I know why my mom always felt so good after having cleaned the house. It's rewarding to have it done, and a feat to complete.

It's a nice day.

Rachel May

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Positively Shameful

Okay, time for me to fess up. I've been lazy. REALLY lazy. I was just reading other people's blogs, the panopticon, actually ( check out his book, too...I really want it, knitting humor "It Itches") and Franklin posted a blog about these beautiful socks that he made.
SOCKS. I think I started knitting socks 50 bajillion years ago. They were supposed to be a Christmas gift for the boy, but I only finished one of them-I wrapped it with the other sock in progress and gave him that for Christmas. There's a lovely pic of the boy's cold foot, with only one sock to warm it up! Note: He may have been sleeping when I took that pic.Folks, I STILL haven't finished the second sock. I have photographic proof of my laziness. Oh, and the icing on the cake is that I pulled one of the needles out when I was going to take a picture of the second sock in progress, so I can try to pick up stitches or start over....completely...urg

I feel so guilty! I was going to surprise the boy with the socks when I got back from Montana...I had plenty of time...but nope, I was lazy there too. I had a great excuse at the start of the sock action. It took me a week to knit the sock, and I stayed up late, worked on it for hours straight, took it with me wherever I went, etc. I was in the middle of finishing school, graduating and attending to visiting family, and handmaking Christmas presents, as well as working two jobs.

And I still finished one sock. Now I have no school, no work (still....sad), and I spent all day yesterday playing Sims 2(which was fun, but not productive).

I'm posting this to hold myself accountable. I need to start getting crap done.Lets not even talk about the blue-scarf-of-doom.

Rachel May

Friday, January 23, 2009


I'm getting really excited about this new line for my Etsy site. (warning-plugging for the website will be throughout this post, at least I warned ya!)

I recently got into making my own paper. I take things like junk mail and old bills and such and shred them in my paper shredder (partially for function later, partially because who doesn't like shredding things, and partially because I would like to keep my identity). After it's all shredded up, I have a white paper mulch-which is fun all in itself.

You can make an interesting handmade paper with just white shreddings, because the ink on the paper adds a purply-blue tone to it, but I usually choose to add color. I take scraps of cardstock from cardmaking and shred them up too. I then dump the white and colored shreddings into my blender(used only for papermaking) and add water. I blend the concoction and ta da! I have a weird pulp.

Taking the pulp and the handmade paper kit I got from another seller on Etsy (, I make the paper by sifting and drying the pulp (it's much more confusing than that, but no fun to read-lots of fun to do, though).

Drying is the worst takes forever. I hate waiting, but the paper looks amazing when it's finished.

After all of this labor, I've made one component of the EcoBook. I then take the handmade paper and some paperboard(100% recycled and saved from food boxes and such) and back it for strength. I then cut some paper to go into the book for writing and doodling on, and bind it...all myself.

This has been one of the most satisfying craft things I have done in a long time, and I feel really proud because I truly feel like it's unique to me. I like that it's environmentally conscious-you know how it's made, where stuff comes from, it uses responsible materials, and when you are finished, you can rip off the binding and recycle the paper! What more could you want?

I hope everyone likes the EcoBooks. It's a new craft product that I really stand behind and I'm so proud of it. If you would like to purchase one, check out my Etsy site:

I have three versions available: Journal (6x8), Listmaker (3x7), and Reporter (3x5).


Rachel May

Buddy and Me

I can't believe that I haven't blogged this yet. One reason why this week has been so rough for me is that my dog got put down. He doesn't live with me, he lived with my Dad, but it was so sad to hear.

My dog's name was Buddy and he was a beagle. He was also really overweight and he liked to sit on the couch and lounge all day. The lounging thing is totally my favorite kind of dog characteristic :) He was always a friend-trying to get your attention by sitting on your foot. He was a sweet boy.

The vet said on Monday that Buddy had a growth that they thought was cancerous. We knew something was wrong with him because sometimes he would tense up and yelp. My Dad told me that he was afraid to take him into the vet because he thought he knew that the outcome was going to be bad.

He was right. I was just home for Christmas, so I got to see Buddy, and I was worried about the same stuff. But even though I didn't want to lose Buddy, I didn't want to be one of those people that keeps their suffering animals around because they can't deal with the pain of losing them. I just didn't want Buddy to have to suffer.

I took the picture of Buddy on Christmas Eve. I think it captures just how much of a jolly, happy dog he was. I'm glad that he found us, and I hope he's better now, wherever he may be.

Rachel May

New Year, New Attitude

I really need to get off of my butt and get stuff done around here. I have been working on something special for etsy that I will share with you soon. I need to get my life list completed and start chipping away at it. And I need to make it public, by putting it on the blog. It's important to hold yourself accountable.

One of the first things that I am doing this year is trying to break bad habits. I have two really bad habits. One is biting my nails, the other-way too much sugar. And because my teeth are bad enough, and I don't want my hands to disgust people, and I certainly don't want diabetes, I need to break these habits.

I've already started with quitting the nailbiting-but I had to clip my nails short two days ago because they kept breaking-urg.

Now I need to progress and slow down on the sugar intake (typing this while eating peanut butter cereal, and drinking coffee with milk and sugar...I'm obviously a health nut).

I wonder if I could go one entire week without sugar. But just eating things with natural sugar to replace it, like fruit. Maybe that should be my goal next week?

I'll think about it and keep you posted.

Rachel May

Thursday, January 15, 2009


Right now is a weird transition in my life. I graduated college a month ago, and with that-lost both of my jobs. I had a job as a peer mentor at the school I went to, but that only really works if you still attend the school. My other job was an internship and was unpaid, so it's not like I lost income-but it was good experience and I really liked the people, so it's sort of a bummer.

I got a contract job doing some interior design-related work right before I graduated, and I just finished it today. Now the future seems very open, and somewhat intimidating...I'm not sure if I'm ready.

I applied for a job yesterday, and will write an update once I know more. The job market is really tough right now, but I feel I'm a good candidate for the position.

Something else I wanted to talk about-just remembered. With all of this future-unknown stuff and worry about not being financially sound, I got to feeling a little helpless yesterday. I mean, what if I don't get a job soon and I'm totally broke and can't pay bills?

After those thoughts ran through my head, the boy and I went on a walk, which is always the best-we get time to talk, and I feel healthier about doing some sort of exercise:). We were almost home when a couple asked us for some help. The wife's car battery was dead, and they needed to hook up jumper cables, but the guy's vision didn't seem too good(lets not discuss the fact that he drove to meet her). After a long ordeal, we finally got the car started, and were on our way. The lady tried to pay us for our help, but of course-we declined.

Now, the reason I bring this up is that this lady was amazed that I knew how to pop the hood of her car. This is the second person that I have met that didn't even know how to pop the hood of their own vehicle, both people had very nice cars-this lady had a Cadillac. I got to thinking about helplessness. I may not be rich, I may not know what's going to happen, but I DO know how to pop the hood of my car AND jump the battery. I also know how to check the oil...which I'm assuming those people must not know. I'm feeling a little more prepared to take on the world now. I think I can figure stuff out.

Oh, and the lady may not have known how to do much with her car, but she sure was nice-I'm willing to overlook a lot of stuff as long as people are nice about it. She was honest and upfront about not knowing anything about her car, which was good. I hope she got home safe.
Rachel May

Tuesday, January 13, 2009


Working away on the website today-got lots to do and inventory to post. I'm feeling very crafty, so that's really helping the drive to get stuff done.

I'm starting to add Valentine's day cards and get the inventory built up, so you should check it out!

Rachel May

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Happy 2009!

Okay, I'll admit that I'm a little late on the New Year post. But I have an excuse! I was in Montana-and while they have internet there, internet at the Dad's house is uber slow compared to what I'm used to, therefor-no patience for it!

I think this year is going to be a great year. I just graduated college in December, that's why the posts got such sad attention, not much time to write during the ceremony and craziness! It was a crazy December-finishing school, trying to finish Christmas presents, playing hostess while my family was here for graduation, traveling 500 miles back home for a while....but now, I'm back.

So what's going on with me? Besides etsy, I'm unemployed-no interning(which was unpaid, so it didn't really matter moneywise) and no student-work position. So I need to hit the job market! I've also decided to do a life-list for 2009, which I will talk about more later. I just got back from Montana yesterday, so today-I will be unpacking and cleaning. And spending time with the boy, that's always nice. We might go to see Marley and Me too-I hear it's pretty good, and I love dogs, so I'm not too difficult to please. I also need to take down Christmas decor and organize my life, make and post new items for etsy, and finish checking email. Busy busy!

I do hope to be more attentive to the dear blog this year, so hopefully I will post more often.

Hope everyone is having a wonderful 2009!
Rachel May