Monday, 27 April 2009

A Present, Man Flu and Other Stuff

Look what I received in the post, all the way from South Africa. Remember I mentioned a lovely surprise last Saturday when I got home from the craft fair, well this was it.
It came from a lovely lady whom I met through blogland, I am not sure if she would mind me telling you her name so for now she will be anonymous. The card is one of Catherine Young's (Bumpkin Bears) and is just beautiful and such quality. The little fella I have named Huggles, he is so soft and squiggy, he is made in South Africa (not China) and is embelished with little roses. There was also a key ring embroidered with a taxi on, which I am told is the source of some fun in South Africa and a gorgeous piece of mini bear fabric. I am not sure what I really did to deserve these things, I only offered a little advice and some support for a new bear maker. She really has a talent for this bear stuff and she is already making very sweet lovely bears and she has not been making them for long. So go girl............................................................................I have met some lovely people in this bear business of ours, who are willing to give encouragement, advice and tips. The help I recieved in the begging was invaluable and without it I would not have gotton this far, so to all the bear makers out there who do give freely of their time and advice I thank you from the bottom of my heart and to the lady in SA I thank you because you didn't have to, but you did, and it was wonderful to know you appreciated my words.

Well this weekend was quite, after the last few weekends I chilled out at home, only venturing to do the supermarket dash. We have an invalid at home at the moment, hubs has had a "cold" or "man flu" for the last few weeks, you now the sort that lingers, never to completely come out nor disappear. To be fair he has been in a lot of pain with his face, nose and joints.....................................actually EVERY BIT OF HIM HURTS, don't laugh he really is ill!!!!! Whilst I am sympathetic, I am getting fed up with having to raid our local pharmacy every day for potential remedies, of course it isn't a simple cold with the added problem of the rape flowering in the field opposite, its a chest infection, or "I don't know what I've got" infection. My opinion is he is run down, its been a rough few years since we lost his mum and I did warn him he was pushing himself too hard, not sleeping etc BUT I have been gracious and not said the "I TOLD YOU SO"................................................................don't worry I will get it in at some point. One thing he did do was pull the caravan out for an overhaul.................................not sure why as we can't afford to go anywhere at the moment, like everyone else we have very little spare money, in fact we are on a minus each month.....................come on Gordon Brown, sort it out. I felt a little teary eyed I must say, for years we didn't go on holiday, you don't miss what you have never had and then friends suggested we go with them on a Sun holiday (the newspaper) they are great and very very cheap. Until then we didn't realise how important it was to have a break away from your everyday life, you see the holidays stopped again when we got our GSD Dixie, we left her once with my mum and we spent the whole week worrying, we could tell things were not hunky dorry at home. Dixie had ripped the wall paper, demolished the bathroom carpet, growled at my dad and mum had to sleep on the settee with the dog for the first 3 nights. We then didn't holiday that next 18 months and it was aweful. So last year we bought a caravan from ebay, its a cracker, a biggy. We had to buy an older 4x4 to tow it but there is 3 of us and a dog. Now before you all mutter carbon footprint, we use this 4x4 for holidays and the thing does about 1500 miles a year so not a lot of carbon. It is currently off the road due to no MOT or tax, I let it lapse at the end of last coming and all that......................bad move, as we now have to spend money on that as well. I totted up how much money we needed and then screwed it up again...........................................................:(
I have also re-listed William on ebay............see I told you ebay and I were a bit at odds with each other. I have lowered his reserve and listed him at that starting point. He did get a lot of watchers, bless him and some bids but ebay seemed very quite this week, with several artists not selling. I told him (William) it's not cos they don't love you, I am sure there are a few collectors out there that would love to give you a home BUT its the way of the world at the moment, don't cry!!!! Hehehe!!!
Bye bye for now
Huggies Sue xx

Monday, 20 April 2009

Ebay and A Raffle Win

William on ebay
Well I have finally listed William on ebay for 7 days, ending on Sunday night at 7.29pm. I have started him at 99p with a reserve at £55, no takers yet but I do have several watchers. But boy was it a hassle to list him, burnt dinner ensued!!!! I use Activa listing template and since my last listing in February they have changed it all and I lost all my templates!!! So I decided to just go with ebay this time, ok higher fees but at least it would be done in time to dish up dinner!!! Not so, I couldn't put my arrow in the description box at all, no matter how hard I tried, it was not having any of it. I have to admit to loosing my temper at this point and we had charcoal chicken for lunch.........................a new flavour!!!!! I eventually gave up and tried again later with Auctiva and it all worked, I can never firgure computers out they baffle me. I am not sure if he will sell, he is gorgeous and I am very happy with him but ebay and I don't have a great selling relationship, buying is a different matter. I seem to see bargains everywhere, especially when I am broke, like now. The so called "credit crunch" bit us in the poverbial butt last September and like everyone else I feel we are paying for the mistakes made by our banks. Don't get me on this one as I will be on my soap box for days, hehe!!! BUT why are the credit card companies INCREASING their interest rates when the Bank of England has reduced the base rate to vertually zero!!!! Come on Gordon Brown most of us home owners locked our mortgages into fixed rates!!! So has the drop in rates been helpful, NO!!!! Of soap box, yes you can do it gal, just step off ;)

Anyway I had a very busy weekend, on Saturday I rushed off shopping at 9am and did a supermarket sweep in 20 minutes, rushed home, unloaded shopping and loaded the car with my beary things. I have to say I was cursing "him who has man flu" all the way round, he insisted the shopping was done before I went off for the afternoon.
Ok let me back track a few months, I was asked if I would like to exhibit in a local craft fair, by a lovely lady called Avril, who is one of my daughters Kung Fu teachers. I said "yes, no probs, just let me know when.........................!" Well it was Saturday, so grumpy (hubby by another name) was none too happy, you see I had my quota of days out (1) for the last 3 months when I went to Nottingham on Bank Holiday Monday, only 5 days previous, how dare I???!!!!
So off I trots, now I didn't actually expect to sell anything and to be truthful that was not the point, I was on the artist bear promotions trail. It was a lovely afternoon and no, I didn't sell but I had loads of lovely questions and conversations about bears and "what an artist bear was". I donated a bear for the raffle and was very pleased when he was picked on the 3rd ticket, although a little girl won the first ticket and nearly picked him up, much to the dismay of several watchers but Quality Streets were her choice in the end. In the end he went to a very nice lady, who I had spend a good while in conversation earlier. At these things, I have a history of never winning anything and as more and nore tickets were pulled, the object of my desires sat there taunting me and I just knew we were destined not to be together...........................................................................................but I WON and grabbed this painting as fast as fast can be, It is painted by Avril of Kung Fu and it just classy, don't you think?

So the moral for today, give yourself freely, as you never know what will happen!!!!! I had another little surprise in the post when I got home, but more of that later!!!
Feel free to pay William a visit, he will be happy to see you in cold ebayland, his link is just below his picture.
Huggies for now
Sue xx

Friday, 17 April 2009

An Old Bear - William

I would like you to meet William, now he is very special to me. Why??? I adore old looking bears and have wanted to "have a go" for ages. I think each artist must have, in their head, the idea of the perfect bear that they would like to make, some aim for a modern bear but for me I have wanted to try ageing a bear since I started this wonderful journey. The thought of where to start has, to be honest, put me off, the idea that you have to desecrate a gorgeous piece of mohair by plucking and "painting" is a really difficult thing to get a handle on, but as the burning need has been gathering a pace for many months now, I decided to just go for it.
William is the first, I have to say the little imp gave me bruises from the plucking and earned me scowls from the other members of the household!!! what do they know??? Back to William, he is a handsome fella at just over 11 inches and I have distressed him, which doesn't really show in the sunny pictures, he is floppy with a nice heavy feel and a wobbly head. I am not sure where to place him, he may venture onto ebay at the weekend (Sunday).

If you are interested in giving William a home, then please do email me for details etc and I will try to take some less sunny pics hehe!!!

Wednesday, 15 April 2009

Nottingham Bear Fair

I just thought I would show you some of my piccies from the Nottingham Bear Fair, which was on Bank Holiday Monday and boy was it a great day. I sold a quite a few bears and the crowds were eager and plenty. It did tail off in the afternoon but the morning was buzzing. I made some new friends and met with some old ones, a good day was had by all. Nottingham is only a small venue and is a little strange as everyone can't fit in the main building, so they use a log cabin as you enter the main car park, that was were I was. I was a little disappointed but actually I think we were busier than the main building, plus you do get a bigger table.
I caught up with Andrea of Cubbyhole Cubs, Vicki of Baggaley Bears and Jenni's Bears (get that website done). I met Sue Quinn, which was a delight and her hedgehogs...............well they are just so sweet and such a lovely lady, as was Emily of Martha Makes, she makes the most sweetest bears and so tiny.
On the collector's side I had a great long chat with a lady called Julie (?? sorry I so am rubbish at names) I was sorry I missed her at the end, as by the time she had finished talking to me she had bought her first kit.........................good for you and I hope she gets in touch to let me know how she gets on....................even if I have her name wrong.

I do think that hats off to Maria who organised a great fair and really pushed on the advertising front, as most of us had a good sales day. I was a little worn out at the end as to be honest I did not stop talking all day.................hehe!! shy type that I am. Kat from Brierley Bears came for a visit and bless her she has booked for August so that will be great as I can't wait to see her bears. It was also a thrill to meet Barbara of Barbara Ann Bears and she is the nicest person you could wish to meet, she had amazing bright orange hair to match her kaftan top but boy was I thrilled when she said she had seen and heard of me, we had a cracking conversation about eyes and I will be winging my way to her website for some old eyes and some vintage fabric, it maybe slightly more expensive but that stuff is pure gold. Well I am sure by now that you get the picture and if you haven't been before, its certainly one to peg in your dairy.

I did promise a picture of Herbie last week and I got so carried away making bears last week that I didn't get round to it, there is always one more to do, isn't there?
So here is Herbie, he is about 4 inches and has a hand knitted scarf of fine mohair.
He will be going onto my website sometime this week at £25 plus postage of £5. So if you would like to give Herbie a home please contact me via email (top left of my blog) and he could be your new friend.
Added 16/04/09: I have just added Herbie to my website so if you would like to take a peak, here is a link FenBeary Folk

So got to go for now, as back at work today!!!!! It goes so quick, time flies is so true.

Sunday, 5 April 2009

Wedding Tinkles and Herbie

Yes Wedding Tinkles not Bells, the tinkles are for my brother, he got married yesterday, I think? Does that surprise you that I don't know, well it does me. It all started a few months ago when my mum told me that my brother and his girlfriend are planning to marry in the Autumn. Now she is from another European country, so the plan was for them to marry there. A few weeks later I was told that they may just head off to a registry office and get married here, without any fuss. Ok by me, we do after all live in a free country and everyone has the right to do as they please, does that sound bad, it's not meant to, I am a great believer in everyone being equal regardless of colour, creed or anything else, so if that is what they want then that's fine. I jokingly said we could gatecrash, I wouldn't have, its not my style. Jump forward to Friday and my mum tells me they are getting married tomorrow with 2 witnesses, no family. I feel fine with that, a little sorry for my mum as she is heading off for a planned visit next week, so they could have waited or timed it better, but hey its their life.
You see I am writing this with tears in my eyes, why? because he has not told me himself nor has he contacted me to let me know that he is now married, I feel slightly hurt by this. He once along time ago told my mum that we were not close and believe me this was news to me, we don't live near each other but I have always felt that come whatever I would always be there for him if he needed me. A few years after that he told me he would never come back home to live as the area he was bought up in was full of louts who drank all the time and good for nothings, I did point out that we were not all like that and his reply was to tell me how un-cultured and un-educated we were.........................................say no more. This issue has a double edged sword for me as I sit here feeling very sad, you see a "colleague" a few months ago, during a heated exchange said that the trouble with me is that I always think everything is about ME, so you see I can't even feel sorry for myself anymore as I know the whole world is not about me, I never thought it was, now everytime I feel hurt, anger or sadness by what someone has said her words echo in my head..................see she was right. I just need a hug sometimes, like everyone else.
Huggies to everyone and I will post piccies of Herbie tomorrow, if you all don't mind, I haven't the heart to take his picture at the mo and I don't think I could see through the tears either.
Blessings xxxxx

Thursday, 2 April 2009


I would like you to meet Lily, she is a friend for Periwinkle.
I delivered her to her new mum yesterday and she is now happily playing with her new friend.

I have been soooooooooooooo busy both at work and at home but tonight I am off work till the 16th April, don't get me wrong I love my job BUT a full time job doesn't go well with getting ready for a show. I vow each time I will be organised and be ready, it never seems to happen!!! Why is laid plans and all that hehe!!! My current situation is 2 complete bears, 3 bears need finishing, 5 bears part sewn, 3 bears waiting to be cut out and about 10 in my head, I have 11 days to go. The maths just don't add up, do they? I don't mind telling you I am starting to get stressed, one of my biggest problems is I am always trying to work out what collectors will like and I always feel that I miss it somehow. It's a case of shall I make that bear or that one or that one and I end up feeling that which ever one I choose I should be making another one, boy my head is just swimming, if anyone has the answer...................................I beg you tell me.

On the health front, I am feeling much better. I went and had a mini blood test (to check my kidney function) last week and having realised that they had not given me enough pills in the first place, put in an order prior to my visit. Boy what a drama, it transpires the "locum" I saw originally had not put on my records that I should up my dose after 2 weeks, so a lot of tutting and doctor consults went on, to see if I was allowed further medication. Now why would I double my medication without the doctor telling me too, I ask you!!!! Well eventually they agreed, under protest I add, I went back on Monday to find out the results and surprise surprise I did need the higher dose and my blood pressure is now at 138 over 84, which is amazing, no wonder I feel so much better, less tight heads, more energy and less down.........................................I was found Sunday morning dancing to Hot Chocolate's I believe in miracles, much to hubbies amusement!!!!!! At this rate I will be dancing on the ceiling in weeks, well maybe not.

I will hopefully have a few little one to show you over the next week, so keep paying me a visit and if you are in my neighbourhood then why not come and see me at The Nottingham Bear Fair
I will be the mad lady dancing in the aisles!!!!!