Goodbye 2015.

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I have to say that 2015 may be the year that I am happiest to see the back of. In my whole life I cannot think of a more challenging year. I mean really, I had to know, it started off terribly with the loss of my sister. And then later my rocky marriage came to a screeching halt and I suddenly found myself separated. It was a year where I felt like things were being flung directly at my head and my job was to just dodge them as best I could.

As difficult as it was to lose my sister it was that much harder because she was my person. You know, the person you have that you tell the best news to and the worst news, too. The one that you can call and you can start mid sentence because they know the entire back story. The one that you are comfortable calling and then spending the first few minutes sobbing because you can’t even bring yourself to say hello yet but know that they don’t care and will wait as long as it takes for you to be able to speak. It was that much harder because she was my person I turned to when things happen like marriages ending and sudden separations that are life changing and so very challenging.

She was also my person I turned to when I experienced successes like the ones I experienced in my business this year. (She was my #1 fan when I started my business). Yes, 2015 wasn’t all bad  and through it all some pretty amazing things happened as well. I am proud of how far Babayaya’s Handmade Creations has come this year and I am amazed at all the love and support I have felt all around. It feels pretty awesome when people tell me they love what I make. I had bigger plans for Babayaya’s this year but I am happy at how much I did accomplish with all things considered.

They say that things need to fall apart in order to get better. That may be true but it is still hard to let go of the things you know and love even when you know you have to. This year has also brought me some strong connections and support networks with new and old people in my life that I would not have formed had I not lost my sister and my husband. Or maybe I would have formed them but not let them flourish as they have. If I had my sister’s shoulder to cry on I may not have reached out as much to my network as the need wouldn’t have been as great. And for that I am thankful because I have some fantastic people in my life now.

As 2016 begins I think that this year has to be better than 2015 but I know I am in for more change as it isn’t done with me yet. As bumpy as 2015 was I am grateful for the positive that has come out of the negative and plan to embrace the upcoming changes as best I can. The things that have gotten me through each day of this very long year is waking up and focussing on the things I am grateful for (I do have LOTS!) and the things that I do have the power to change. Oh, and having a good cry many mornings after I drop the girly at school has gone a long way…it really does make you feel a bit better.

Custom Order From a Photo

Wow, I really haven’t written in quite some time. I have discovered Instagram and have to admit that I will do a quick photo post these days as opposed to a more lengthy blog post. I enjoy writing though so I am making a mental note to try to find the time to write more in the future.

The reason I am writing today though is because this custom order I had the honour of working on last week needed more words. I have a customer who has ordered a number of things from my Etsy shop, both straight from my shop and custom, too.  I have to say it feels pretty darn good when someone likes your work so much they keep buying more.

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This custom order was extra special though because my customer’s parents lost their dog and he was interested in having me do one of my silhouette’s to give to them as a gift in memory of their furry loved one. Of course, I am a huge animal lover and also still remember when I lost my beloved dog like it was yesterday. After having so many orders from this person I feel like I know him that much better and I wanted to make this one extra special. Ordinarily, I just find silhouettes of a dog breed and paint from that but in this case I thought I would give painting from a photo a shot. I am really happy with how it turned out and hope his parents love it. I also hope Biscuit is happily carrying mail and newspapers at the Rainbow Bridge with my dog, Stella.

This is the photo of Biscuit that I worked from to make the painted sign.

Upcoming Markets

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I am always trying to work on new things so I have fresh items at each market. I have been wanting to do some driftwood pieces and think it is perfect to debut them at the White Rock Farmers’ Market this Sunday, July 5th since they are so beachy.

I have just updated my market page. If you want to see which markets Babayaya’s Handmade Creations will be at in the next while you can check out my market page on my website.

I am happy to say I have been accepted into the Town & Country Vintage Fall Market on Saturday, September 19th. This one will be in Langley at the Murrayville Hall. I had so much fun participating in the Town & Country Vintage Market held at the Apple Barn last weekend that I am anticipating the Fall Market will be just as great.

I am also going to be a vendor at the Fall MarketPlace Montage Artisan Market at the Ocean Park Community Hall in South Surrey on Saturday, October 3rd. This one is close to my heart as I lived almost right across the street when I was a kid. I love that neighbourhood. I am sure it will feel a bit like coming home.

And, I have been accepted into the Crafty Affaire Holiday Market. Yay! I enjoyed being part of their spring market and look forward to being part of the holiday market, too. The Crafty Affaire Holiday Market will be on Saturday, November 28th at the Elgin Hall in South Surrey. I love that this one is also close to home. I really love to be able to feel a part of the community I live in.

And, of course, as previously mentioned I will be at the White Rock Farmers Market July 5th (this Sunday!) and August 9th and I will be at the Deja Vu Vintage Market on July 11th. I will update my market page on my website as new markets are added.

I am always trying to work on new pieces so I have fresh items at each market. Of course, anybody can come see me in East Beach, White Rock, where I work out of my home. If you need anything in between market days or even just want to check out my lovelies on your way to the beach just call ahead to make sure we will be here.

It’s a Car Theme

Lately, I have been working on some car inspired signs which got me to thinking about the cars I have had.

My sister once accused me of being a car snob. She said I always seemed to have nice cars. I don’t think that is necessarily true. While I have always had an eye for nice cars the only thing I really require to drive a vehicle is that it be safe (although that was even questionable for the 1978 Ford Fairlane I got from my sister. Sometimes  it would stall while driving and with it went the automatic steering …that was one heavy vehicle to control)!

For many years I was single, employed  and on my own with just a dog to feed. So, it only makes sense that it is easier to have a nicer car. My first “nice” car wasn’t even that nice although I loved it.  It was a red 1971 VW Karmann Ghia. It was very rough around the edges and cost me $2500. At the time I found it I was driving an old Hyundai Stellar. I had always loved VW’s, especially Karmann Ghias (I loved the pink one Molly Ringwald drove in the movie Pretty in Pink). It didn’t take much to convince me to buy it. A couple of years later I was able to afford a newer car so did. I bought a VW Jetta. I loved that car to drive but it caused me no end of grief with engine trouble. After the warranty period was over and I had to pay for repairs (the same ones over and over although VW wouldn’t acknowledge it) I decided to trade it in for a BMW 323. That was another fun car. I could afford it while I was working but at the end when I could no longer tolerate my employer I sold my BMW without a second thought.

I ended up buying a really cute 1991 Nissan Figaro that had been imported from Japan. That was another fun car. Actually, I bought it when I was considering opening a yarn shop. I thought it would make a great yarn shop car (can you just imagine it parked outside the shop). But again I sold it once I found out I was pregnant with the girly. I preferred the idea of not having a two seater (well the back seat was so small I’m not sure people are supposed to sit in the back of it) and two door car with a baby and all the things that go along with a baby.

That was my run on fun cars. I had a Honda CRV for a while until hubby and I decided to go down to one vehicle to save money.  However, when his job changed and he started driving everywhere we picked up a Mazda 3 for me to drive. I have to say it’s a little fun, too.

I have been wanting to do a Volkswagen series for some time and have finally got to them.  While I usually do black and white I felt these need some colour.

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And, I have also had the idea to do a Route 66 sign. When I came across this “rougher than most” board I thought it would be perfect.

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It’s Market Season. I Am Getting Ready As My First Outdoor Market Approaches.

Market Season is in Full Swing! Yesterday I attended The Olde Farmhouse Vintage Market in Maple Ridge. It was the first one I have been to and I have to say I really enjoyed poking through all the stalls although I was hindered just a little by the impatience of the girly. Really she did a terrific job, it’s just a lot to ask of a 4 year old. We took lots of snack breaks though so it wasn’t so hard on her.

Now that I am a vendor myself when I attend markets as a shopper I have a whole new outlook. I look at all the booths and realize just how much work must have gone into getting them set up. I was really impressed with the booths I saw yesterday and as I work on my first outdoor booth I feel like I have a high standard to meet. So far I have only attended indoor markets as a vendor where a table and chairs were already provided for me. Next week starts my series of 5 outdoor markets I will be attending throughout the summer. (Check out my new 2015 Markets page on my website for the details!) These require me to bring my own everything from the tent to the tables, or whatever I want to display my signs on. I found a rickety old ladder that I think will be a great rustic display piece.

I have been hunting for 10 x 10 Market Tents on Craigslist for months. Just when I thought I would have to give in and buy new (they are expensive especially when you are just starting up!) one popped up and coincidentally it was in Maple Ridge right where I was going yesterday. I ended up getting it and felt like I won a jackpot. It was still an outlay of money but I probably saved about $100. Yay!

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My “new to me” market tent. I like that it’s red and will add some colour.

This week you can find me in my backyard with my tent set up as I move displays around and figure out what works best. It should be fun although it gets a little stressful as the market day approaches and I hope I am prepared for every possible thing. Also, we have an old quilt in our family that I thought would make a fabulous table covering for my last market but nobody seemed to know where it went. But my Mom just found it tucked in the back of her closet! It’s a bit tattered but I think it will add great colour to my display. I am excited to see how that looks.

I have said before that I really enjoy the White Rock Farmers Market. It will be my first outdoor market I am at as a vendor next Sunday, June 7th. The first one of the season was last weekend and, of course, I went as I did today. I just love seeing all the fresh food and other wares. Last year was the first year I came across peonies and instantly fell in love. They have been at both markets this year so far and I just want to know why I have never really known about these flowers before?! Of course, I have heard the word “peony” but I guess I never really knew what they looked like.

At today’s market I came across a vendor I hadn’t seen before, Pastiche Art. I only mention it because I was WOW’d. I love old window frames. I even have one up on my wall as art. I painted it a green/blue colour and I think it looks fabulous in it’s rustic glory. Well, I came up to the Pastiche Art stall and it was instant love. Brent Unrau, the face behind Pastiche Art takes old rustic frames and matches them with paintings. He had fabulous ocean scene paintings (another love of mine) behind the old rustic windows and the result is amazing. When I talked to Brent all I could keep saying was “they are all gorgeous”. You have to check out his fabulous work. And know the photos on the internet don’t do the work justice either. Go look now (link above)! He also told me he will be at the White Rock Farmer’s Market on June 28th …he goes about once a month & he will be at the Deja Vu Vintage Market in Delta on July 11th if you want to see he stuff in person. I would recommend it. Babayaya’s will be at the Deju Vu Vintage Market, too. I am definitely looking forward to his seeing his art again.

Now wish me luck in getting my outdoor booth display together and come see me next Sunday at the White Rock Farmers Market!

Wedding Guest Book Tree

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I have been waiting so patiently to post this one! I was asked to do this wedding guest book tree as a custom order back in March. I was given a picture of a tree that was used to have wedding guests sign the leaves then the idea is to frame the paper and you have a piece of art and also a fabulous souvenir of your wedding. This lady wanted one on wood! How great of an idea is that? So, we discussed colours, font etc. and because the couple already have a child she asked me to add an extra bird in (awww!) Then I went to work and I LOVE how it turned out. Of course, because it was a surprise for the bride and groom and their wedding wasn’t until the beginning of May I promised I wouldn’t post it before the wedding. I certainly don’t want to spoil any surprises!! I hope they love it, too.

It’s Almost Farmer’s Market Season!

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Who doesn’t love a good farmer’s market? All the wonderful food fresh from the farms not to mention the flowers and other artisan goods you can find, too. I love going to a farmer’s market because you just don’t know what you might find. I have often been inspired by the actual farmer’s selling their wares. They are often so passionate about what they have to offer because they have a direct hand in the production. Often they can give you great recommendations what to do with their product, too. It makes me excited to get home and cook dinner.

Of course, I always love the idea of supporting our local farmer’s, too. If we didn’t then they wouldn’t be able to afford to continue growing and what would we do if the local food producer’s went out of business? But that’s a whole other post.

This year Babayaya’s Handmade Creations is going to be a vendor at the White Rock Farmer’s Market. Today, in town, I saw the banner has been hung announcing the market. I am really excited. I attended the market last year a few times and thought it was great. I am looking forward to getting to be a part of it this year. Babayaya’s will be there June 7th, July 5th, & August 9th from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The White Rock Farmer’s Market has revamped their website, too. Among other things it has added a Vendor Profile page which I think is a great idea. As a customer I always like to be able to look on a site and see who is part of the market. And this way, too, after the market you can also track down a vendor that you may have particularly liked.

While Babayaya’s is only there for 3 markets the White Rock Farmer’s Market runs from May 24th through to October 11th and the market hours are 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. (note: these are updated hours from last year). I hope to see you there!