hello from vacation!

I hope everyone is enjoying their holidays!  We're a little bummed that we didn't get any snow other than flurries, but other than that, this has been the best Christmas week ever.  Little Iggy was thoroughly spoiled by Santa and her grandparents, and she is currently dragging all of the new toys all over the house.

 This morning, I'm shipping a few over-vacation orders and then have year-end accounting to work on.  I'm re-opening the Etsy shop and re-stocking both shops during the first week of January, so I better start cranking those carders.


yarn ball ornament tutorial

Here's a quickie gift and/or project for a snow day:

You need:
-Styrofoam balls (I used size 1.5" since my tree is tiny)
-Scrap yarn
-Tacky Glue
-Needle and thread.

Spread a thin layer of Tacky glue all over the styrofoam ball.  Wrap yarn around until the ball is invisible, and finish it off by attaching thread.  Tadaa!  If you select itty bitty styrophoam balls, little tooth picks could be inserted as "faux needles," or you could just sharpen thin dowel rods into needles as well.

Oh yes, that's silver fun fur used as "tinsel."  How else am I going to use all of that random pesky fun fur up? By the way, fun fur makes some pretty adorable fuzzy ornaments, especially if you have it in metallic colors.  I was gifted a bag full of that stuff and never knew what to do with it until now.

PS.  I've got to give a shout-out to my best friend Barbara who brought this project possibility to my attention. Definitely check-out her amazing embroidery.


time for a break, and another half-dozen pomegranates.

I've posted my last update of the year and am now preparing to hibernate until 2011.  I'm shipping my last pre-Christmas load tomorrow, and anything ordered after tonight/early tomorrow morning will ship after Christmas weekend.

I feel the need to apologize for my previous whopper post.  Whew!  It was like a vent/brainstorm/brainsplat, typed out within one of Ingrid's shorter naps.  oy!

Also, the "Gingerbread" spin-along has been posted in my Hobbledehoy Fan Club Group on Ravelry.  I have one more set available if anyone is interested... email me at darthliz@gmail.com.  Here's what the set looks like:

Run, run, as fast as you can..  or don't...  because if nobody snags this, it's mine, all mine, even though I already have a set for myself.   $25 for 5-ish oz.

 The January HobbledeCLUB is now available for pre-order.  The theme is "Constellations" since winter is my favorite season for star-gazing.  The sky is so crisp and clear out here in the countryside, and every night I feel compelled to take a peek at the glittery starscape.

This week, I hope to post a quickie yarn ornament tutorial for those very very few of you with time to burn before donning your Santa roles.  ;)  I just made a few last night for my tiny (and first!) Christmas tree.

Stay warm!


Hello snow!

While we're not exactly trapped indoors over the recent snowfall, we are buried under an avalanche of projects.  Here's what's been happening at the HobbledeBarn:

- Ingrid just celebrated her first birthday last week!  I baked a cat cake and threw a party for her which was hosted by her paternal grandparents.  It was a small party, just close family, since I think it's best not to overwhelm a one-year-old.

-We're officially changing our shipping methods over our holiday vacation so that we can have the mailman pick up our packages.  We're a one-car family, so I've really struggled to get out of the house more than twice a week for shipping.  The reason I haven't switched sooner is a bit complex- I don't get out of the house often, so I actually enjoy my trips to our small town post office.  Also, we live down a long lane that's off of a busy street- so leaving my packages near the mailbox is not an option.  Our mailman/woman varies frequently, so I'll be making an appointment with the local postmaster to discuss options.

-I have accomplished next-to-nothing for my shops :(  Between my lack of spare time now that T is working two jobs and the fussiness of a teething toddler... oh, and add on a whopper of a cold that sank it's teeth into me a few weeks ago but just won't give up.. I'm in bed around 9pm every night and asleep less than a minute later.  Don't take this as a complaint- I love motherhood and I'm thrilled that my husband has two jobs that he enjoys.  I miss working though, and will be up and running a bit more smoothly after February (that's when Iggy starts part-time daycare).  I will be offering up a small shop update this weekend, the last of the year's, along with the January HobbledeCLUB.

-I didn't make it into MDS&W this year.  They offered me a slot on the waiting list, but I decided that I'll take a pass and either try again next year, or focus on a new product line for HobbledehoyFibers.com.

-I'm going on vacation... a mental vacation!  I'm so excited to have a much needed holiday.  Even though multiple days can pass between carding sessions, I'm still looking forward to a break in which the fiber arts will be on a back burner while I can prepare for the new year and where Hobbledehoy will be going from there.  My vacation officially starts on December 21st and will last until January 2nd.  Everything ordered will be shipped by then, including anything ordered during my small shop update this weekend.

The last bit of news is extremely sad.  My dear Huxley (my English angora) died on December 1st.  I'm incredibly heart-broken.  He was such a sweet lap bunny and fibery companion.  The week he died, I had trouble keeping my head on straight, and I'm still having trouble not crying when I see my stash of angora fiber.

I won't lie.  The juggling act this year was rough.  This was my baby-year, and believe me, when given the choice between working or snuggling my little lovebug, I picked my lovebug every time... sometimes to my shop's detriment. Shipping was unorganized, communications were slow (have you ever tried to type out an email while a crawling baby was climbing up your lap while swatting at a crotchety cat who still possessed claws? haha!)  To prepare for 2011, some things are going to have to change.  Either:  a) Hobbledehoy Fibers will officially go part-time and downsize or b) the product lines will be augmented by un-dyed fibers and some limited edition batt colorways each month.  I have always been a little too transparent with my business plans, but hey- I'm hoping that my struggles/experiments/successes will be useful to other small crafting businesses out there.

As a final note, I want to thank all of my amazing returning and new customers and fiber-friends.  The community of support and sharing has kept me optimistic about Hobbledehoy.  I love you all, and wish you all a very Merry Christmas, a belated but Happy Hanukkah, and a New Year full of good things to come!



This weekend's packages have been stuffed and shipped, Thanksgiving feast has been nibbled and re-heated into oblivion, and this new rainy week has me busy indoors with carding December HobbledeClubs, Gemmy batts, and fresh novelty batts for a shop update over the weekend.

I had the lucky opportunity over the holiday weekend to re-connect with a childhood friend (military brats- you know how rare that chance can be!)  She and her daughter stayed at my parents house a few miles away, so I spent most of the weekend visiting, cooking, shopping, and trying to keep Ingrid from over-loving my parents' skittish cats.  Thankfully, the weather has been decent, so I've been dragging Ig outside frequently to burn off energy and stave off cabin fever.

Next week- the little one celebrates her first birthday!  I'm making her a kittycat cake and have already ordered (and received) cat decorations, since she seems to be a budding cat-lady.  We're keeping the party small - just grandparents and my sister.  I can't believe it's been nearly year since I brought a teenytiny 5 lb. bundle home from the hospital (actually, that anniversary is Christmas Eve, since preemie Ig spent two weeks in the hospital after she was born).

Well, stay tuned for another post announcing that the update has happened.  I'm through with planning specific dates for updates, since motherhood has taught me to expect the unexpected and to keep plans absurdly flexible.