Good Bye to Pokeberry Hill...


Saturday, November 28, 2009

Killin' Frost This Morn, Jug Band Progress, Online Shopping and Etsy!

I'm looking out at very frosty Pokeberry Hill. There are some plants that are done now for the year. The canna has croaked, and my banana trees look like they will die back now for the season. The Japanese forest grass went orange yesterday and I brought in my little bay tree in a pot before it too succumbed. I hope its not to late to take some cuttings or save a few potted plants that I had forgotten outside. We'll find out later today.

It is COLD here in Pokeberry. We've got our little space heaters going as Hubby has still not hooked up the heat coil on the heat pump. Soon...(sez He) I'm in my sweater and slippers and have a fleece blanket wrapped around me as I type.

Winter has arrived. We will most likely still see some warm days and winter here is short--nonetheless it is winter. I'll be starting seeds right after Christmas again for the earliest spring planting. That's how fast this winter thing goes in our new homeland. January will be durn cold some days-- as long as I've been in the Carolina's--only a few years--it has never dipped below 19 degrees above zero and that was usually that last 'expected surprise' blast around Easter. Certainly the weather here is better than our time spent up in Fargo where ANYTHING above zero was balmy stuff.

I stayed home on Black Friday and worked on my jug band critters. I now have a billy goat and a pig, a bear, a fox, a possum, a raccon, and a chicken. Most of them are just heads at the moment. I think I will do a turtle yet. I may also make some other critters that won't be drafted into jug bands. This has turned out to be passionately fun!

Just because I was at home and cozy, working on my little critters, doesn't mean I didn't do my shopping like a proper Gramma and Mom. I ordered little Ruby's toys on and had them gift wrapped with little cards and shipped to my Mom-in-law's house in Florida where we'll all be meeting this year for Christmas.They'll be under the tree when we arrive! That was so handy! I loved it! I then went to and joined up and found a cute gift there for my dear daughter-in-love. She's such a wonderful gal, I am pleased as punch to have her in our family. I also ordered some Cajun Christmas Music CD's to give as gifts with my Jug Bands. I found some real jug band music too--but some of it was just not really appropriate sounding for Christmas time. The music I chose sounded very folksy and was all instrumental and I thought would be nice for folks to listen to as they enjoyed looking at thier little Christmas jug bands on display with other Christmas decorations.

My family members have lots of other Christmas decorations that I've made them over the years. Some have Santas or Religious figures that are more than twenty years old. I've made gifts most of the years I've been married. Last year I did gourd art with birdhouse gourds, this year its felted wool. In years past there were sometimes painted wood items, paper mache--worked well in years when we were really broke--cuz it was nearly free to make. I did many figures in poly clay too.

Always my homemade gifts have been one of a kind items that folks have kept and enjoyed over the years. The only one in my family that really doesn't have any of my Christmas art is me! Ah well... that will change soon. I will get the things I made my parents now that they are both passed on. My brother is going to mail them to me or possibly bring them down if he can make it to my daughter's wedding next year.

While I was on I explored some of the many things that are sold there and contemplated opening up my own Etsy shop after Christmas. I think I will do it. I could sell handmade things like my jug band critters, or some of the things I used to sell on ebay back in the day. I could also sell some of my Pokeberry Garden plants or seeds or even maybe rooted cuttings. I could also sell vintage items that I might find around here at flea markets, thrifts stores or auctions. I used to do all that on Ebay. Back then it was a bit difficult because I really HAD to make money. Hubby was out of work and I was still homeschooling 3 of my 4 children. I worked really hard to do ebay. I found a nook selling dog art and made some good sales that way,enough that I stopped selling much else for awhile, but eventually I went to work full time in an Artist Supply Store to have a guaranteed paycheck every week because Hubby was only working part time at that time. Its been several years and states now, and I am not working right now, though I have some prospects of library work again--this may be a good time to consider selling online again. I love Etsy's set up. It is much nicer for a seller I think than Ebay.

So much has changed for the better in our life. Its been a long time now since those days. My income is not as important as it was--the pressure is off in every way. The kids are adults and don't need me teaching, I don't have to scramble like a mad woman to make sure I bring in money every week. Maybe it is time again to explore the possible streams of income that could come in from having an Etsy store. I still don't know if I will or won't go back to working in a library--it takes a long time to go through that hiring process and if I do get an offer--its still a choice I need to give much thought to--depending on distances and such like. I could have an Etsy store even if I have a full time job, or I could put more of myself into an Etsy store and not work full time. Don't know... we shall see.

The sun is shining now and its warming up in the house but its still only 30' outside! Mojo wants to go for a walk--but I have to admit--Mom's not so keen.
I suppose if I get myself moving around more I may have a change of heart. I'll need to find some really warm clothes!

Have a Brrry nice day!!


  1. Mary,
    What a busy and amazing lady you are! Your jug band critters are adorable! I love the idea of putting the CD with them - your family members will cherish them always!

  2. I love how you write...I wish I could write more...nice to always hear your latest news and thoughts!

    Do you have any good cures for a really bad cold???

  3. 2Tramps-
    I am finishing up my fox today. yesterday I finished the possum--she is a swinging gal who will just be dancing I think. The fox is quite snazzy. Its lots of work to get the details but so fun!

    Julie-- I think there are years sometimes when you just get EVERYTHING. Last winter I had such a time with coughing--and it came off a bad asthma summer--when I'd been taking advair--which I don't anymore.

    I did finally get relief from a couple courses of prednisone packs and z-pacs. Which is just antibiotics and steroids. After that I weaned off all my ashtma meds--and I wonder now if they were making more susceptible to things?? dunno. I just take one allergy pill per day now and that's it. With all the dust here in this house I would think I'd be sick all the time--but I'm doing OK --so far--this year.

    The last cold/flu we had I was sick--but never as sick as I usually get. Quite amazing.
    Maybe I've finally got immunity?

    Anyhoo-- have some chicken soup and put some cayenne in there--its great for sore throats. Sage for stuffiness. Lots of hot teas. I end up sleeping in my recliner sometimes when I'm sick--elevated head helps.

    Nothing really 'cures' but lots of things comfort. ;-)

  4. Hi,
    While you are visiting ETSY, I thought I would invite you to my Shop: verdant farm wool (one word). Also, I am akin to your season of your life, grandma and all and would love for you to e-mail me at then I can link you to my blog page which is really only one page but it tells more about me than my ETSY shop.
    Please do,
    Christine Flaugher