A dollar spent small

On Small Business Saturday, I restocked Sacred Art and Squasht with plenty of Veggie Vampire and Fanged Fruit Kitchen Towels. Both of these shops are run by fantastic humans. They have and/or are dog-obsessed. They are silly. They love craft beer and wine. They are lifting up other makers in Chicago by running stores that sell their wares.

While chatting with Leslie from Squasht, after keeping my towels priced at $10 for years, I made the decision to raise their price to $12. Anytime I have previously raised prices, it was a long and drawn out process. This was a snap decision. Small businesses struggle against Goliath daily and we simply must value our work. By raising the price two dollars, that’s helping me. It’s helping the shops I stock make a wee bit more which then can be pumped right back into that small business.

I modified the Distracted Boyfriend meme. We all do this but we all really and truly need to do better here. Shop local. Shop Thrifted. Shop Repurposed. BTW, this is a great time to plug my fave local nonprofit, the creative reuse center; The WasteShed. The next time you’re thinking you need art or craft supplies, start there.

We can do better. Let’s do better together. Tell me the last time you opted to shop local rather than Amazon or a large chain store.

2013 Week 25: Eyes of the bull

La De Blog - Archery Bow Range

Mountain Goats @ Lincoln Hall. LCB bday dinner @ Bite. Jason Anderson @ Den Theatre. Biked to Etsy Craft Party (Craft Bar) @ Mignonette Bridal. Archery @ Archery Bow Range. Printed a custom order of 73 Matthew Crawley moleskine notebook cahiers for an event in Oregon! Dropped more Bean Baby onesies at Neighborly and picked up their collaboration with Begyle, Neighborly Stout, at West Lakeview Liquors! Spin x2 and 9 mile bike ride another day. Woo!

Great week of awesomeness. Archery Bow Range was incredible. Thanks so much to our friend Elisse for telling us about it. It was a belated birthday present from Z and we had such a great time. I hit the yellow center area a couple of times, but I never broke the bull’s eye’s enter. Aspirations! After an hour of shooting, my shoulders and bow fingers hurt though! I will totally be back. It is very affordable to use their equipment, but I could see it becoming a very expensive hobby. Yep, totally just looked at custom bows on Etsy!

Films watched 25th week of the year:

Walk Away Renee *
Dead Men Don’t Wear Plaid
Lore ** [ Germany ]
Zazie dans le metro ** [ France ]

* documentary
** foreign language

All quality movies this week. I think Lore was my favorite. Gorgeous cinematography and score. Truly interesting to see the end of World War II from the perspective of Nazi’s children. Definitely worth a watch.

2013 Week 23: For whom the Bellwether tolls

La De Blog - Tiny Cover Band @ Hideout (Bellwether)
Tiny Cover Band @ Hideout (Bellwether)

My dayjob’s new hire orientation held Wednesday and Thursday at work left me wiped out this week. Shipped goods to White Rabbit in Iowa City and started selling my veggie vampire tea towels at my beloved Plenty Grocery & Deli. Celebrated my two year anniversary at PortionPac. Sold at Bellwether this weekend, which was a really awesome multimedia treat. There were at least 5 other festivals, a half 5k, Dose market, and both Cubs and Sox were in town that I knew of happening, so we had mega competition. Attendance was on the low side, but everyone who was at Bellwether had an excellent time. Lots of happy faces taking part in the workshops, watching the mobile and stationary bands, enjoying the dog parade, checking out the vendors. I had been meaning to check out Tiny Cover Band for a few years now and I finally got to see them! Jack (Ethically Engineered) and I had the best booth neighbors. Worker B came down from Minneapolis to hawk their honey and honey-based skincare products. New favorite honey!

I hurt my back from all the standing at Do Division last weekend while wearing improper shoes, so I took it easy on the gym and subbed long neighborhood walks in for spin. I did however made it to my favorite class before Bellwether started on Saturday.

Films watched 23rd week of the year:

Dangerous Living – Coming Out in the Developing World *
Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives ** [ Thailand ]

* documentary
** foreign language

Uncle Boonmee ethereal and beautiful; a win. Dangerous Living felt so dated and it is always weird to me seeing/hearing Janeane Garofalo be serious, but I bet it was groundbreaking at the time it came out.

2013 Week 22: Love is love is love.

La De Blog - Me, Megan, & Cookie

Saw my first and possibly last movie at the Patio Theater; they are closing for the summer since they can’t afford to pay to fix the air conditioning. Spin x2. Squasht by Les 3-Year Anniversary Party! Dropped off favors for Aubri’s bachelorette party and I hope she liked them! Dropped off goods at Local Goods. Dinner @ Takito with Stacy. Sold at the mostly rainy but very fun Do Division and had Eliza and Esther fill in for me while I was at Ginny & Gabe wedding happenings! Attended Ginny & Gabe’s wedding and got to see so many friends I hadn’t seen assembled in one room in years!

Ginny and Gabe’s wedding was the first civil union Z and I had been to. There was so much joy in the room. Definitely some of the best vows we had ever heard. Ginny is a very longtime friend and former roommate. I have seen her grow up so much and when I met Gabe, I knew that Ginny had found her other half. These women are meant to be together but our state does not allow them to be legally married. I know we’ll change this soon. I feel that common sense will overcome. It must. When did you choose to be straight? Love is love.

Films watched 22nd week of the year:

Star Trek: Into Darkness
Garlic is as Good as Ten Mothers *
The Story of Mr. Sorry ** [ Korea ]

* documentary
** foreign language

I was let down by the first two films watched this week. I mean, I enjoyed both of them, but I had high hopes for both. ST:ID was fun, but I loved the first of the reboot series so much that I knew it’d be hard to get even close. And come on, a documentary about garlic!? Anyone who knows me would think I would love it, but it was way too lovey dovey hippie wippie for me. Also, there were far too many dead piglets being stuffed with garlicky filling. I would love to see an actual history of garlic. Can someone kickstart that? I will back you.

2013 Week 20: Harbor Country Twee

La De Blog - Flaky Croissant Card

Productive week! Tweekly make: remade the flaky croissant card: “Sorry I’ve been so flaky.” Haven’t made this card in years, but people continue to be flaky and still need this card! Also printed a new card that I just need to put the finishing touches on it once supplies come in. Also this week: Tilda training. Dropped off goods at Rudys Roundup and Bean Baby onesies at Neighborly. Went bowling with Zachary at Fireside Bowl. Friends & Fun @ Marble with Jim Z.

This weekend, Rhymes with Twee sold at Journeyman Distillery Artisan Market. Had some beautiful weather, great booth neighbors, and very tasty cocktails. Z and I stayed at a bed & breakfast called The Pumpernickel Inn and had such a great stay there. I ran into my (awesome) optometrist and we went to his place for a drink after a delicious dinner at Cafe Gulistan. Gorgeous! I now understand why so many people have a second home in Harbor Country. On Sunday, we had coffee at my coworker’s home in New Buffalo. Stopped at a farmer’s market at Skip’s. Wonderful trip through and through.

Because of the fair, I only made it to two spin classes this week. I added Marty’s Tuesday class into my regimen and so now I am going Tuesday, Wednesday, and Saturday as long as I am not selling at a fair. So many upcoming fairs. Speaking of which, I was accepted into the Bucktown Arts Fest Sat., Aug. 24th & Sun, Aug 25th from 11am to 7pm. I’m excited to do this show again.

Films watched 20th week of the year:

Bully (2011) *
Tuesday, After Christmas ** (Romania)

* documentary
** foreign language

Honestly, I wanted Bully to be better. Bullying is a serious issue and this film addressed how horrible it was without giving any kind of solution or action that viewers of the film could take. Sure, having an anti-bullying rally made some impact, but it just fell flat as an ending. There must be statistics out there the director could have mentioned. Give me infographics. Give me interviews with bullies or the families of the bullies. Give me an ending where the system will finally do something to stop bullying. I felt sad at the end of the film and not hopeful. Is there truly no end to bullying in sight?

2012 Week 41: A week of getting so many things done!

A very social week. Went to Lee Nail Supply and Sun Wah, had Tilda’s annual exam/shots, and went to a party. I also cleaned and checked off a bunch of items on my to do list. Huzzah! On Friday, I went to the opening of the SMALL is ordinary popup shop at Chicago Cultural Center. The shop contains a spectacular grouping of items by Chicago artists. Emily Grant did a great job of pulling the artists and products together. I was thrilled to be included in this shop. From their site: the SMALL is Ordinary Shop will be open Monday through Saturday 11am to 6pm. Noon to 5pm on Sundays.

Candida update: Today I have been on the diet 3.5 weeks. Mid-week, I swapped Candida Clear for Fungal Defense. Z and I head off to SF this week for a bit. I am slowly going to add things back into my diet. Once I am back from the trip and had some time to pay off some of it, I am either going to make an appt. at my GP who relocated to the Evanston office, or start trying to find a new nearby GP (I’ve been given a few recs by close friends). I feel a lot better at this point. My lips and facial skin seem to be mostly recovered. I plan to stay on probiotics though because after doing all this research, I know I need my gut to stay healthy. I also added Biotin into my supplement regimen and in, I kid you not, 3 days, I already see a difference in my nails. Thanks LCB & Anna for that recommendation!

Rhymes with Twee winter show schedule:

DIY Trunk Show (Chicago, IL) – November 17
Renegade Craft Fair Holiday (Chicago, IL) – December 1 & 2
Bazaar Bizarre (Cleveland, OH) – December 8 & 9

Who knows if I’ll throw in a one-off here or there, but those are the big guys! Looking forward to doing BBC, since I have not done it in years. I was sad to pull my app for Handmade Arcade (Pittsburgh, PA) though. Four hours less driving in the midwest winter is a big plus for me though. Also getting to eat grilled cheese at Melt with my beloved friends Kate & Brian is a win.

Films watched 41st week of the year:

Seven Brides for Seven Brothers
A Matter of Taste: Serving up Paul Liebrandt*
Captain America
Barton Fink

Enjoyable movie week for me. Z went to the 24-hour Music Box Horror Movie Fest. I did not and was very happy about that. One horror movie a week for me is about all I can handle.

2012 Week 4: Chaos reigns my craft room!

This week I saw some of the best people Chicago has to offer and celebrated the births of three awesome friends. In addition, the Wii Fit told Z and I that we each have lost 5 lbs. since we started the first week in January. A grand week it was.

Rhymes with Twee - Tilda and Maude

My go-to card and gift buying place in Chicago is Paper Doll. Owner Stacy’s house pug Maude is my favorite store animal of all time. She has gone blind and is mostly deaf, but she still knows it’s me when I go in. She’s the only dog that Tilda is sometimes okay with. Tilda was kind of a jerk to Maude on this day, so this shot was the result of many treats and much coaxing. Speaking of shops I love: I am sad to say goodbye to my other go-to shop, Renegade Handmade, which is closing this week. They were the first Chicago store to stock Rhymes with Twee goods and always gave me that proverbial pat on the back when I went in. Such lovely shop ladies (and the occasional dude) that I will miss seeing so often. Now I’ll have to settle for seeing them briefly at RCFs or randomly around the ‘hood.

Since I’ve been doing well with most of my resolutions, I finally felt ready to tackle my craft room, which has remained incomplete since we moved in last April. Most of today was spent pulling it apart and moving things around, organizing papers and thinking up a game plan for completing it. Once it’s actually in order, I feel like I’ll be able to get back to a creative state.

This was a slow week for media consumption for me, but I finally finished my second book of the year, You Had Me At Woof, which LCB recommended to me and I loved. I started reading Hack and so far, so good.

Films watched 4th week of the year:

Funky Forest: The First Contact
Eames: The Architect & The Painter*
Norwegian Wood


Three of these are worth watching, but Hereafter mostly felt like a waste of time. If you enjoy absurdity, then you should see Funky Forest, which I’d rank pretty high up there. I was let down a bit by Norwegian Wood. I enjoyed watching it, but it had been years since I had read the novel. Murakami is one of my all-time favorite authors, but that novel was not one of my favorites. I believe I’ll have to re-read it to see how different it was from the film. I felt it was pretty different, but my pal Kirstie said it remained true. The score was great though (cough, cough, jonnygreenwood).