giveaway reminder!

Just a reminder that the Alphabet Soup poster giveaway ends on Monday! Which reminds me, I need to doodle up a cute graphic for the gift certificates.

This weekend is shaping up to be a busy one. Tim, Ellie and I will be hanging out with some good friends, taking photos, meeting Santa and enjoying the local holiday festivities on Saturday. Once I’m fueled on Christmas Spirit (and perhaps some other spirits of the alcoholic variety, if Ellie goes to bed early) I just might be ready to tackle all the cleaning and decorating I’ve been meaning to do. I also have a gingerbread house kit to attend to, and I want to get a jump start on a new doodle project. We’ll see how much of this Her Majesty actually lets me do, of course.

How’s about you?

yay for free stuff!

alphabet soupIt’s contest time, all! I think you’re going to like this one. The grand prize….

A 12×18 Alphabet Soup poster print!

This was the doodle that started it all, and easily one of my most popular items. If you don’t have kids, consider it a jump-start on your Christmas shopping for your family or friends who do.

If that doesn’t motivate you, I’m also giving away some runner-up prizes–4 $10 gift certificates to use in either of my shops. That means there will be not just one but FIVE lucky winners.

There are four ways to enter, which means you can have up to four entries in the contest:

1) Leave a comment on this blog post. Visit either of my shops (sixhours or calobee) and tell me what your favorite item is. Make sure to leave a way for me to contact you, too!

2) Re-tweet the contest on Twitter by copying and pasting this message:

RT @sixhours Please enter me in the Calobee Doodles contest! #calobeedoodles #contest

3) Become a fan of Calobee Doodles on Facebook and leave a comment on the wall naming your favorite Calobee Doodles print.

4) Blog about this contest, making sure to include a link back to this entry –

The contest runs until 11:59 p.m. on December 6. On December 7 I will collect all entries in a list and generate a random number for the grand prize winner, then four more random numbers for the gift certificates (one prize per person). This contest is open to U.S. and international participants alike! Gift certificates will be sent via e-mail with a code–you can use this code in the “message to seller” box at checkout and wait to pay until I’ve sent a revised invoice.

Good luck!

from saturday, with blood

Today got off to a rough start. This morning after the usual routine of a change and a bottle, I started to clip Ellie’s nails and accidentally snipped her pinky finger in the process. It didn’t seem to hurt her, and at first we thought it wasn’t a big cut–a little blood, a little mama guilt, no problem.

Except her finger just kept bleeding and bleeding and bleeding… you’d be amazed how much one tiny finger can bleed. Several tissues, burp cloths, much gauze and three band-aids later, the second floor looked like the scene from a small disaster and I started to lose my calm, can-do front.

Then I imagined the headlines: “Baby bleeds out–death by hangnail.”

We decided to go to the doctor just to be safe (thank goodness for weekend hours). They were very nice about our new parent paranoia, even though by the time we got there, Ellie’s finger had stopped bleeding and she was obviously fine (if not grumpy with us for making such a fuss). We were sent home with instructions to keep it clean and relax. Ahahaha, I think that last part was a joke.

So the morning was not quite what we’d planned, but thankfully it got better. We chose to brave the rest of the day and make the trek to Ellsworth to the Gifted Hand Show to check out some handmade goodies from fellow Maine artists. I purchased a cute hat for Ellie from Worthy Goods and a surprise Christmas present from Atlantic Art Glass. I ogled the kids’ peasant dresses from Anabelfuzz and the intricate glass beads from Fern House Studio. I’m definitely a fan of online shopping, but there’s nothing like seeing an artists’ work up close and meeting the people behind the Web addresses. Maine is home to some very talented people!

After returning from the show, El and I hung out with our friend Danielle while Tim caught up on homework. Then we all crashed in the living room to eat pizza and watch Supernanny and celebrate our pinky fingers being (mostly) intact.

If tomorrow is as eventful as today was, I’m going to need a second weekend to recover.

on motherhood: week 20-something (who has time to count??)

imma bein silly I’m not sure where the last month has gone… lost in the abyss! Life is great, just extremely busy.

Ellie started daycare this week, which was relatively uneventful with the exception of her catching her first cold. Welcome to the petri dish, baby girl. She’s been a bit feverish and snuffly, poor thing, but seems to be on the upswing. We’re only a teensy bit sleep-deprived, so I consider myself lucky!

Speaking of the little bean, I’m told tomorrow is Mother’s Day, and oh hey, I’m a mom now, right? I guess I am, although most days I feel like this is just a warm-up for the years to come and the “real” parenting has yet to begin. This is the honeymoon phase, which serves the purpose of ensuring we bond appropriately so that when she’s 13 and a terror I won’t leave her on the side of the road somewhere. I may be tempted, but thanks to the memory of her baby gummy grins, I won’t actually do it. 🙂

All in all, after four and a half months of Ellie in our lives, I think I can speak for both Tim and myself when I say we are just so in love with her. She’s perfect, from her adorably wrinkly little toes to the slightly bald spot on the back of her head where she rubs against her crib mattress at night. Yes, you read that right–even her bald spot is adorable. I want to capture every little nuance of her behavior and tuck it away in memory, because every day she’s a little more attentive, a little more coordinated, a little more her own being and less the squirmy, wailing creature we met in December (who was cute in the way newborn babies are cute, but is no match for this strikingly blue-eyed baby girl).

In other news, I’ve been working on some new ideas soon to be released at Calobee Doodles… in fact, I need to take photos for some new products tomorrow.  Very exciting! And today I spent some time at a local greenhouse, buying new starter plants to decorate our porch over the summer (a “congratulations, you’ve survived four months of mommyhood” present to myself). It seems the new floors have inspired me to prettify the rest of the house, which includes our often-neglected back porch and yard area… I can’t wait to see all the colorful flowers peeking in at us through the kitchen windows.

Now I’m going to go relax, maybe read a book, and enjoy the first thunderstorm of the season. Good night!

off to a fiery start

I listed my photographs at this weekend, in the interest of finding a promising alternative to Etsy and just generally trying to get my name out there… and I’m off to a really “fiery” start! Someone posted my “roast” print on a popular scrapbooking forum, and just a few short hours after launching, my brand new Artfire shop has almost 400 hits and 1500 item views. Wow!

Unfortunately, most of the comments toward my photos are negative, and some of them are downright mean (who knew scrapbookers were such a grumpy bunch?), but hey, exposure is exposure. Calobee Doodles is getting some positive attention as a result of all the extra traffic, so I can’t complain!

It will be interesting to see how the Artfire shop does given its unique start. I’m always surprised by what appeals to people (and what doesn’t). My photography gets much more attention at Etsy–in the form of treasuries and front page features–than my doodles… but I’ve sold equal amounts of each type. I suppose there’s something to be said for making art that appeals to two drastically different audiences.

Speaking of which, I’m in the process of redesigning to add my illustration. I’m not doing much photography right now (unless adorable baby portraiture counts) and it seems silly to keep sixhours exclusively for photography when the portfolio hasn’t been updated in over a year. At least it will look somewhat current with the illustration included. Now I’ll be lucky if I can find the time to sit down and code it.

back to the real world, baby

smile timeI know it’s been nearly a month since I last posted, but how do you expect me to get anything done with that adorable face looking up at me? She’s just begging to be hugged and cuddled and, in the words of her uncle Julian, spoiled rotten.

But the clock is ticking, and my maternity leave is winding down. I go back to work at the beginning of March. I’m both looking forward to it and not… I know the change of pace will be refreshing, but the time has gone too fast. I feel like I’m just getting to know this amazing little person, and now I’m going to be pulled away from her. It’s so unfair. Thankfully we’re able to leave Ellie in the hands of a dear and trusted friend while we’re at work, and I know she’ll be quite happy and safe. That makes the transition a little easier, at least.

In business news (oh wow, that’s right, I have an Etsy shop!) Calobee Doodles is taking custom orders again! The break was nice, but now I’m itching to get back to work. I already have some new orders in the pipeline, so this is good. I also miss taking photos, but I have a feeling it will be a while before I can focus on a project of that scale… best to start small. Besides, I maintain that any long, uninterrupted stretches of time will be spent exactly as they should be–napping!

a shop update and other things

i like my coffee blackHey look! A shop update! Yay!

I have some photos from the dollfood series that came back from a consignment contract… this means two good things for you: first, I have 8×12’s of most of the new photos on hand, so those prints will ship the next day (Sunday obviously being the exception, and this is assuming I don’t get a sudden influx of orders for the same prints–that would be nice, but has never happened, so!). And second, the prints cost less than they did on consignment! Yay!

I’m in the process of putting the series up right now, so go see!

Also, it appears I’ve been named ThisNext’s “Expert Maven” for all things handmade. I’m not sure why (I’ve been neglecting ThisNext recently, alongside most of my other regular Internet endeavors) but now I have to live up to my title, don’t I? And thanks to baby fever, I have a new excuse to window shop and recommend more handmade products!

New posts coming soon. I’m currently experiencing an unexplained revival of first trimester ickiness. Let’s hope it’s short-lived. 7 p.m. is a perfectly appropriate bedtime for an adult, yes? I thought so.