Monday, November 29, 2010

Cyber Monday ~ Free Shipping

It's that time of year again my darlings!  From now until 5am PST I am offering free shipping on all orders through my website in honor of Cyber Monday.  This includes international shipping as well.  If you would like to buy a piece, just send me an e-mail and I will be happy to adjust the invoice for you. 

Happy holiday shopping!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Quick Update

Hi all, I just wanted to let you know that I haven't been posting (or working) because this flu finally reached it's full force Thursday.  I cooked what had to be the best dinner I have ever made and then by the time it was ready I could barely eat any.

I have mainly been sleeping for several days.  I will be back to posting (and working) as soon as I can!

I hope you all had a lovely Thanksgiving!  Hugs, K. <3

Monday, November 22, 2010

Lost Bears And Brain Cells

The past couple weeks have been really crazy for me.  What with everything that has been going on, having stomach flu and making bears non stop, my usually rapier sharp brain has become a puddle of mush.  I have made a couple of serious blunders even to the point of complimenting an artist on work that wasn't hers because I had been looking at show bears and blogs with bears and I was in image overload.  I love her bears though!  I just had a moment of confusion that left me feeling like an idiot.  (Color me bright red!)  Unfortunately that was just the last in a series of really stupid things I have done the past few days.

I called R's cell phone three times today meaning to call my Mother.  I have lost my glasses at least 100 times this week.  I took a bath, forgot I took it and took another one 20 minutes later only to wonder why my towel was damp.  I need sleep and food!

A few days after the passing of my step brother, my half brother sent me an e-mail.  I hadn't heard anything out of him in about eight years.  I only met him once when I was 12.  But about ten years ago I found his phone number and called him.  We corresponded for a while and then he stopped responding.  So you can imagine my shock when I got an e-mail last week out of the blue.  For an only child I have a lot of siblings that I don't know.  Apparently I have a 15 month old grand nephew too!  Isn't that exciting! Somewhere in the world I have a half sister too, assuming she is still alive.  But unfortunately I don't know a thing about her, not even her name.

I have also been making bears non stop for weeks.  I haven't been eating or sleeping much because I have been drinking excessive amounts of coffee to keep myself going.  Plus I have been in the proverbial "zone" of bear making.   In fact I still have a snowman in the works that didn't quite get done in time for the show, my weird idea I want to make, and two special orders I haven't even started yet...both of which involve making new patterns.

A few posts back I told you I made a bear just for myself, which is something I never do.  But even more out of character, I decided to keep the bear I made after that one as well. He was grey and I don't have a single grey bear.  Plus I just really liked him.  Fogbow is shown above.  This afternoon I finally got around to giving him something to wear.  I had him all done up, was carrying him upstairs when I decided to go get the mail.  I found a piece of mail laying in my front yard (I have the worst postman ever) that belonged to my neighbors, so I took it over to her.  She looked at me really strangely, but I didn't know why.  I came back in the house, went to get lunch and ended up watching Dr. Phil...also something that I NEVER do.  I don't watch daytime talk shows and Dr. Phil would be at the very bottom of my list if I were going to watch some.  But they were doing something on dumb blondes that aren't really dumb or something to that effect and I got caught up in it.

I suddenly realized two things.  I had my shirt on inside out AND backwards...which probably explains why the neighbor was staring at me so oddly.  I also realized the bear wasn't upstairs.  Now if you read my blog then you know my memory retention is terrifyingly good.  I remember everything I read, see and hear and I know where every thing right down to the tiniest bead, button and safety pin is in my house.  So I was just blown away when I had absolutely no idea where Fogbow was.  I was drawing a complete blank.  Not the first time that has happened this week either.  It's the strangest feeling for me to have no idea.  I tore this house apart looking for him.  After about an hour and a half I noticed him happily waiting in the key tray on my foyer table for my neurons to fire and remember where he was.  *Smacks her forehead*  I have absolutely no recollection of setting him there.  None.  It's just weird.  But he is safe and sound now. 

Tomorrow I am going to go to the post office to mail out all the pieces to their new homes...then since R will be gone for the night, I am going to get a much needed relaxation massage.  After that...I am going to come home and just sleep.  Maybe I will be able to recover some lost brain cells in the process!

~*~ Dovey, Whitaker, Smudge & Smidge ~*~

This week four pieces got great homes, and I have four new ones for you!  First up is Dovey, a delicate little dressed girl.  I rarely do dressed or white bears so she is definitely a one of a kind.  I also have a new large bear; Whitaker.  He is the most lovely shade of forest green, and perfect for Autumn.  Next I have my two elves, Smudge and Smidge.  Smudge is tall and lanky and Smidge is short and chubby!

You can visit them on the Bears Page of my website!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Holiday Show Tomorrow!

Ok my darlings, tomorrow is it!  The show begins at 9 am EST, 7 am for those of us in Colorado.  I have some lovely new pieces for you, including the two shown in the previous post.  But you cannot access my show page by going to my website directly.  We are not permitted to put a link directly to it.  You will need to go to Teddies Worldwide in order to click the link to my page. 

See you there!  Hugs, K. <3

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Teddies Worldwide Online Holiday Bear Show Sneak Peek

The preview page has been opened and we are finally allowed to give you a little taste of things to come this weekend!  Smudge and Jolly are just two of the pieces that will be available.  If you would like to check out the rest of the preview you can do that by clicking here: Teddies Worldwide Online Holiday Bear Show

The show starts Saturday at 9 AM EST and runs through Sunday until 4 PM.  You can access my page through a link on the main show page.  I will have some more new surprises in store for you!   Hope to see you there!

Hugs, K. <3

Monday, November 15, 2010

Accepting The Gift

Have you ever been given a gift and responded with something like...oh you shouldn't have...or didn't have to do that!  It's kind of a go to response for many people.  We don't always know how to accept a gift.  Sometimes we probably don't think we are worthy of it.  Other times we don't even recognize it as a gift.

It's a shame when that happens.  It means that someone loves us and took time to make that extra special effort on our behalf, so how can we turn that down so easily?

27 years ago I was given a gift.  I didn't know it at the time.  My Mother came home and announced she was getting married again.  I still lived at home but I was nearly an adult and had my own life, so I really didn't know much about this man she was going to marry.  I had met him in passing, and I was delighted she was getting married again.  In fact I had been trying to marry her off for years. 

Over the years as I got to know him, I came to realize that he was the sort of person we all aspire to be.  He is kind, compassionate, faithful and would help anyone out who needs it.  He is just an all around good person.  I will never be as good of person as he is, but I sincerely wish I could be.  I have used him as an example to apply to my own actions on many occasions.

Like my Mother, this was his second marriage.  The first time he was married he adopted three children all when they were babies, so he was the only Father they ever knew.  He looked upon them as gifts.  After he got his divorce they didn't have much to do with him sadly.

This week we received the news that the youngest, my step-brother passed away rather unexpectedly.  While it's had a huge impact, you don't need to offer me any condolences because despite being a member of our immediate family, I only met him once, and it was a couple decades ago.  So I don't feel a great personal sense of loss.  But yet his passing has had a deep effect on me all the same.

I feel an unspeakable sadness and sense of loss for what my Step Father must be going through right now.  He doesn't deserve this pain.  But oddly the greatest sadness I feel is for my step brother.  He was given such an incredible gift in having this very fine man as a Father and he didn't recognize it for what it was, nor did he accept it.  Now that he is gone, he will never know what was truly offered to him.

I can imagine the devastation my Step Father is feeling right now.  I am sure deep in his heart he always hoped a time would come when his son would reach out to him in the way he reached out from the very beginning.  That opportunity has passed now, and it makes me sad beyond what words can express.

So I have shed many tears for the loss of a man I didn't know, and the pain of one I know well.  I thank God that I do recognize him for the gift he is, and I have tried to show it to the best of my ability so that he knows he is loved.  He has made up for so many things that my own Father was not.  I don't blame my Father for his frailties, but he was a damaged person and not the Father I wished he could have been.  I have been very fortunate to have my step Father take that place in my life and my heart several years after my own Father had passed on.  That was undeniably a gift that I didn't expect.

When someone offers you a gift, great or small....whether it's a member or a higher power.  Accept it with grace.  You do deserve it because you are loved.  The one who offers the gift needs to know that you appreciate it too...that's important to them so that they know they are loved in return. 

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Mean People

I have been dealing with a lot of stress this week.  Tonight it finally got the better of me when I tried to open a new bottle of apple juice.  They put the lids on so tight and I couldn't get it off.  R was in bed so I couldn't ask him to do it.  I couldn't find the gripper thing either.  I ended up making a few frustrated, unsavory remarks to the bottle.  Luckily it was just a bottle and wasn't offended.

But if it had happened when I was in public, what might I have said to a stranger who inadvertently did something to cause me more stress?  Let's face it, we have all been there.  We try to be good, kind, polite people...but sometimes life can just pile up on us and stress speaks for us.

I recently read an account of someone who had something very unkind said to them at a show.  They didn't understand why that person was so mean to them.  Naturally people came along and made comments to the effect that some people just live to make other's lives miserable, and some people have no manners, etc.

But can we really judge a person that harshly based on one momentary encounter?  I am not in any way condoning such actions, but I think we need to stop and ask ourselves if there is something larger going on. 

Not that long ago a young man made some very rude remarks to me because I got in his way. The type of remarks I wouldn't repeat in polite company...or even in the company of salty sailors.  It was an accident, I hadn't meant to.  When he started cursing at me, I took one look at him and knew something was going very wrong in his life.  A part of me just wanted to hug him and tell him that it would be ok, but of course he wasn't mentally receptive to that and probably would have slugged me.  What I didn't do however was respond in kind.  He clearly had problems and didn't need me adding to them.  What he said was just words, it didn't mean anything or change my life in any way.  I didn't even let it ruin my afternoon.

I don't really believe that most people are one dimensionally mean all the time.  Sure I suppose there are a few, but even then I think there is something that has happened in their lives to make them mean.  Usually it's some type of fear.

As for people with no manners...well maybe they weren't taught to be respectful.  But again that follows a chain of events back to the person who didn't teach them.

I know it's difficult when someone is mean to us and we don't know why, but remember they are people...and sometimes people just go through rough times.  Being confrontational or saying mean things back doesn't help the situation.  Chances are later after the encounter they felt bad about it.  When you were mean to a stranger due to stress, worry or fear weren't you sorry later?  I know on those rare occasions when I let life get the better of me and I take it out on someone who doesn't deserve it and doesn't understand I was certainly sorry later.

While we usually can't go back and fix what we did in those instances, we can try to be understanding when we are on the receiving end.  And...I will try not to abuse my apple juice anymore.

Have a lovely day!  Hugs, K. <3

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Good Stuff

I know it's been a few days since I made a post, but I have been busy, busy, BUSY!   I had a large household chore that couldn't wait and took two days.  It was painful to have to stop making bears to do it, but sometimes things have to be done.

I have also been working on the webpage for the show.  That has to be done for approval on the 15th, so it can't wait either.  The show is the 20-21st.  I hope you will all stop by, I have some fun new pieces, including two adorable elves, and several others.

The new Teddy Bear & Friends magazine came out and along with my ad, I also had two bears featured in the collecting/most wanted section.  They also sent out an online holiday gift guide, and I had an editorial in it.  How exciting is that!

While I was working the other night, I had a very weird idea for something to make.  I am going to give it a try once I am done with all these new pieces.  So stay tuned!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

One Just For Me...Maybe

One afternoon when R and I had only been married a short time he came home to find me with a finished bear and a couple tears running down my cheeks.  I had been working very hard getting ready for a show.  He asked what was wrong and I told him I had made a bear that I really liked and I wanted to keep it. 

He was puzzled as to why I was crying over this.  What he didn't understand was that I was feeling extremely conflicted about that.  I explained to him that my Mom always told me to sell them.  In fact she convinced me so well that I felt guilt if I wanted to keep one.  He hugged me and told me that I made it and I could do what I wanted to with it, and if I wanted to keep it that was perfectly ok.  I did keep it.

I never really got over feeling that way though.  Usually when I want to keep one I end up feeling too guilty about it and sell it.  As a result I have very, very few of my own bears.  (I have lots from other artists!)

When I made that very first bear all those years ago I made it with the intention of keeping it.  I made the second one as a present for a friend, and I really had nothing in particular in mind when I made the third one other than that I wanted to try to make my own pattern from scratch.  It was the third one that sold and through a series of events that started me in the bear business.  In all the years that have followed I have never sat down to make another bear that was just meant for me.

I have been working very hard lately getting new pieces done...some of which you have seen and others that are being held back for the upcoming online holiday show. I have been alternating so you get to see one and then I hold one, etc.  In there I made the new bear pattern that you saw with Bastian and another one you haven't seen yet.  I really love that pattern. I wish you could hold things through the computer so you know how truly delightful they feel in your hand. 

 Anyway...last night I took some time out from making bears for my collectors, and sat down with the intention of making a bear just for myself.  He is only halfway through the distressing process and he isn't detailed yet...but I snapped a quick pic.  It remains to be seen if I can bring myself to keep him or not.  Either way I like him, he has a really sweet face!

I will show him to you later when he is finished.  In the mean time I am going to go fall into bed!

Have a lovely day, K. <3

Monday, November 8, 2010

Cause And Effect

Many people aren't aware that time is not a constant on this planet.  Mass has a direct relationship on gravity, and something with a large mass slows down time the closer you are to it.  For instance if you were standing next to the Great Pyramid time would be going a smidge slower there than it would be ten miles away.

Of course there is an exception to every rule.  For some reason that physics cannot explain when a group of men stand next to a football, which has very little mass,  2 hours slows down to 3 1/2-4 hours.  It's quite a phenomenon really.

One thing that is a constant however, is that if you spend your life with another human being...a day will come when you look at that face you love so much and wonder to yourself exactly when they lost their mind. 

When we first met R liked football, but he only watched his team play.  He has always been a Raiders fan.  I am not sure why since he has never lived in California and he doesn't even care for the state. 

As the years rolled by he added more and more games to his TV repertoire.  As of last season he started watching talk shows pertaining to the game as well as the games themselves.

Now if you read my blog you know I that I love R and think he is a great guy. He is a logical guy as a rule and not given to superstitions and the like.  But he is a guy...and recently he has fallen into that psychosis that sports enthusiasts can fall into. He has  become one of those guys that cheers and does a little dance when they score as if he made the touchdown himself.   He has also decided I can't wash his Raiders lounge pants and jersey until they lose. 

This season for some inexplicable reason so many other men, think this has a direct effect on whether they win or not.  I guess that training, weather conditions and the location of the stadium they play in doesn't factor in as much as one would think.

Nope it's because he is wearing dirty clothes.  Who knew?

As I was doing laundry today I found myself secretly hoping they lose...and soon!  I wonder how much time slows down around an article of clothing when it builds up layers of dirt?

Sunday, November 7, 2010

A New Design And An Interesting Turn About

First of all I want to tell you that I have been working hard the last few days on new graphics for my website.  They are really cute...cuter than I usually do, but I love it so much!  Maybe I am mellowing with age?  At any rate if you would like to go see all the cute you can do that by clicking here: Blondheart

I had an interesting revelation today.  It's no secret that artist's can be very isolated sometimes in what we do.  While the people in our sphere of existence can encourage us and indulge us, they don't always understand what we do, and exactly how we do it.  We tend to accept that fact.

But what we sometimes forget is that we are not always isolated in our thinking or our actions because other artists think the same way.  It's something that doesn't come up in conversation that often.

We are often inspired by other artists.  Sometimes what they create spurs our own imagination or we discover some little detail we want to incorporate into our own work.  Now don't confuse this with copying another artist.  It's certainly not the same thing.

A little earlier I was looking at an artist's work that has inspired me a few times over the years.  Our bears don't look anything alike other than that they are vintage inspired.  I commented on a certain aspect of the new pieces and how much I liked it.  She replied a bit sheepishly that she picked that thing up from me. 

Now I am rarely speechless.  But I couldn't think of a single thing to say for about a full minute.  I just sat there gaping.  For some reason that thought simply never occurred to me.  Wow.  What an interesting turn about.  An artist who has inspired me is also inspired by me!

It's funny, when we look at our peers we don't always think about how they look at us.  When we make something we tend to focus on what we might have done better on a piece.  Or maybe we are completely satisfied with how it turned out.  Whichever it is, we only look at it from our perspective.  But do we stop to think about how another artist out there might be thinking they like what we did so much they are inspired to incorporate that little detail here and there into their own work?

I guess sometimes we think people make something so wonderful that they arrive at it completely 100% all on their own.  Which of course is rarely the case.  It's nice to know we aren't as isolated as we sometimes think and that we can inspire as well as be inspired!

Friday, November 5, 2010

~*~ Tinsel ~*~

I finally have something new to show you!  I have been working very hard on snowmen lately.  I only managed to get one pic of him though.  I was insanely busy working on a project tonight after I finished him up.  I will have more pics of him tomorrow though.

In the mean time if you would like to visit him, you can do that on the Animals page of my website. 

And now...I am going to go collapse in bed.  Have a great day!

Hugs, K. <3

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

A Little White Bunny

This afternoon I went out shopping for a few things I needed.  I went to look for one of those things in my favorite antique mall.  I did find what I wanted, but as I was cruising past a tall cabinet that held jewelry, I noticed a bit of aged white fluff on the top shelf.

The tag read "Possible Steiff?"  He isn't of course.  He is just a little Japanese knockoff piece from the late 50's to early 60's.  In an uncharacteristic fit of haggling, I asked if he would call and ask if they would take a lower price.  She was quite agreeable and took 15% off. 

I am not entirely sure I got a bargain, but he had such charm I bought him anyway.  I was going to replace his lost eyes, but when I got him home I realized two very funny things.  One is that whoever tried to mend him glued the buttons on instead of sewing them.  I thought that was odd until I realized the second funny thing...he doesn't have any stuffing in his head, it's just some type of ball form that's very hard.

Maybe it's for the best, his little white shell button eyes add to the personality that I found endearing anyway.  He isn't jointed, but his head permanently looks to one side.  Probably from being carried tightly against the body of the child who loved him.

I gave him a new ribbon since he didn't have one...and I would swear he is smiling a tiny bit more now than when he was in the jewelry case!

I have been working very hard and haven't had time to post much, but I thought since I can't show you all my fun new holiday pieces just yet, I would show you my little treasure I found instead.  You will get to see the three new pieces at the show on the 20th.

Not to worry though, there will be some new stuff you can see soon!  Bastian and Pip flew off to their new homes yesterday.  Pip is going all the way to Glasgow...and I wanted to hand deliver him! Bastian is off to sunny California.  I miss him already!

Monday, November 1, 2010

And The Winner Is...

We have a winner in the Haunted By Holmes Give Away!  The lucky girl chosen by randomizer is Alyssa at Clever Penguin!

Congratulations Alyssa! Please send me an e-mail (link at the right) with your address and I shall send it right off to you!

Thanks for entering everyone!
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Current copyright laws allow for all work to be automatically protected when it is created. All original artwork, photos, text, logo, descriptions, and derivative works from Blondheart are not to be copied, imitated or distributed in any way. All rights reserved solely by the artist, Kelly Dauterman.

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