Sunday, December 26, 2010

2011 Goals!!!

I want to thank all of you who have supported me and followed me in 2010.  I hope you all have a Happy New Year and wonderful Holidays.

This post is going to outline a few exciting new things in the future for Trinkets N Whatnots and also for our amazing Promotional Thread on Etsy.
And many of my goals and aspirations for 2011.

I hope you enjoy reading them, maybe are inspired by some of them, and will share your 2011 goals too.

2011 Trinkets N Whatnot Goals ( )

1.  I really want to have over 300 items listed in my shop!  Huge goal but be on the lookout for some amazing new products.  New shapes and colors to my Swarovski Button rings coming soon:

2.  New Line of Necklaces coming out to match the Swarovski Button rings and Earrings!

3.  I will attend a minimum of 6 craft shows in 2011.

4.  Find at least 4 local boutiques to carry some portion of my jewelry!

5.  Sell over 300 items in 2011.  An average of one item a day MINIMUM.

6.  Improve my SEO knowledge and apply that to my shop!

7.  Use Kaboodle more often, to its potential.  (ezines, connecting, organizing etc.)

8.  Blog at least once a week

9.  To have over 1000 blog followers!!

I am sure there is more but I will continue to add to my list as I go.

2011 Goals for the Promotional Frenzy Thread!!!

1.  I want our thread to have over 3000 sales in 2011.  (may sound high but it isn't with the BNR's and promoting we are doing!!!)

2.  Everyone to have a blog and to blog regularly (with a blog list of our thread mates)

3.  I want to have more special events that focus on us coming together as a team at a specific time in the thread to help each other. 

4.  At least 50 members in the thread!!

5.  Add NEW social sites to our list to utilize (kaboodle, stumbleupon, squidoo, many to come)

6.  Continue our BNR each week, 70 + sales each time!!!


One mysterious, misc. goal:  I will be opening a THIRD shop in 2011!!!!  Keep an eye out for the announcement but I am extremely excited and have receive positive feedback from the few that know!

Here is to a wonderful 2011.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

How Are Buyers Finding You?

I have been doing a lot of research on my Google Analytics (GA).  I know there is valuable information in those statistics to help me optimize my Etsy shop.  I plan on having more posts in the future on other capabilities but today is about figuring out how your buyers found you!

I stumbled upon a great post in the Etsy forums written by:
If you haven't bumped into Cindylou on the etsy forums you have missed out, she is a wealth of knowledge.
She also has a successful jewelry shop on etsy.

Her post in the forums is a wonderful step by step guide as to how to use GA statistics to see how your buyers found you.  This is incredibly useful information because now you will know where to find your buyers.  Cindylou was nice enough to allow me to repost this, thank you.

I hope you guys find this as helpful as I did.

1.  If you haven't already, sign up for Google Analytics:

2.  Make sure you also enable the "Site Search" option, which tells you how people searched for you on Etsy:

3.  Then, after you make a sale (remember that it can take 2-3 hours for GA to update)

A:  Log into GA, change the date to today (top right) and find the buyer's location by clicking on Visitors--> Map Overlay--> Country (menu on the left), then the region and/or city.

TIP: not everyone will have exactly the same postal address as GA shows them from. Look for nearby cities. You may have to google the town or city name they gave you to find out what it is close to.

B: If you find the city or town, click on it. You will see a screen like this:

Note the little arrow pointing to the drop-down menu that says "None" - that is called the "Dimension" menu

C:  Click on the menu that says "None" - your screen will now look like this:

D:  If you click on the menu option that says "Source", you will know which website they entered Etsy from.

If that is a search engine (like Google, Yahoo etc.) click on "Keyword" to see which terms they found Etsy with. Sometimes this will answer your question!

E:   Unfortunately, GA only shows how people entered Etsy, not necessarily your shop, so if the source & keyword do not make sense for your shop, or if the source is "direct", you need to click on "Landing Page" to see what page they first arrived on.

Often you will get a result that looks like this:

(hover the cursor over the shorter title to see the long one in the box)
In that result, the person searched "In Canada" in the Jewelry-->Necklace category on Etsy, & found my "paua-abalone-shell-and-crystal-necklace" on page 54 of the search.

This page can help you decode the landing page data:
Although it isn't 100% up to date. Usually the codes are clear once you look carefully.

F:  If you could not find the city your buyer listed as their address (maybe they are on vacation & shopping from another location), then you can still try to find them by going to the "Content-->Content By Title" menu (on the left), & locate the item they bought. You can use the "Dimension" menu the same way as before to find out how the people who looked at that page today entered Etsy, & which page they landed on to find your shop.

Sadly, GA cannot track every buyer, as people can block the tracking, & some computers don't have the correct software installed to track through GA. Also, if you have a very busy shop or generally get a lot of business from one region (like New York City) then it might be tough to narrow this down. However, I can track at least 90% of my buyers this way

Try it! it is easier than it looks!
Thank you again Cindylou for providing this valuable information!!!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Treasuries on Etsy!!

Recently some really amazing treasuries have been made featuring my shop and of course other gorgeous shops on Etsy!  I wanted to share a few with you. 

Please check these out on etsy, click on some of the items, and leave a comment  :)

Crystal Clear!

Basic Black!

Plenty more to come!!!
Thanks for looking.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Black Friday Cyber Monday Deals on Etsy

So the biggest shopping weekend of the year is upon us!!  This Friday the 26th through Monday the 29th will be huge sales and deals throughout the internet.

I hope that many of you will be doing the majority of your shopping through Etsy to find the most unique handmade gifts.  Most shops are more than willing to customize pieces or do a special order just for you, all you have to do is ask!

There is a network of shops in the Promotional Frenzy thread that will all have deals this weekend, so I hope you will consider one of these shops.  You can find their shops in the list of shops on to the left of this blog post.

My holiday deals start TOMORROW, Thanksgiving and will go through Monday Midnight EST

20% off of any item except rings!!  (These items will automatically be marked down on 11/25)


If you are buying rings BOGO - Buy 1 ring, receive the 2nd of equal or lesser value at 50% off.
(To receive the discount, you put both rings in your cart and checkout.  Then you pay through paypal and I will refund the difference to you.)  

Hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving.


Sunday, November 14, 2010

Promotional Frenzy BNR Mondays!!

It is that time of week again!!!  Monday, November 15th is our next Buy and Replace Treasury (BNR) for our Promotional Frenzy Thread.

Last week we had 79 sales in one day!!!  Our goal is 100 sales this time!

Please help blog this, tweet our BNR, use stumbleupon, and tell your friends.

Cinnamon Promotional Frenzy BNR


The treasury is 4pm Est (etsy) time until 1am. 

Here is a list of the featured members:

Please come out and help chat, have fun... and maybe even find some holiday gifts!


Thursday, November 11, 2010

Saturday Special Event: Selling A Story

Lately, Etsy has been emphasizing the importance of each artist creating a mood/story with their descriptions.
To separate my product from the millions on Etsy I have to find a way of expressing the story behind each piece.

A wonderful storque article describes in detail the difference of describing an item as a "thing" or telling a story.

For our thread on Etsy we are going to help each other think outside of our boxes.  Each of us will get to write one description for another shop in our thread!  Obviously you may not be familiar with my product, or the specific materials required to make it, or even the keywords that are important to my category.....
But the idea is for us to see our products from our customers perspective.

How do you view my item?  What stands out to you?  Can you picture it in a wedding, baby shower, on a beach vacation?  What vision comes to mind when you see my item?

One shop on our thread:

She makes a lot of animals by hand, crocheted... and she always comes to the thread and asks for help naming them.  I could never put a name to my creations, but for some reason I can look at one of her items and immediately get an imagine and name.  The bear above reminded me of Jack of all trades because he has so many colors in him.  It is easier sometimes when we aren't so attached emotionally, so let's help each other get a fresh view on our products.

Let's take our shops to the next level!!!

Saturday night 9pm EST (etsy time) in this thread:

You have to check in Saturday with the thread and put one item onto the list that you want help writing for.  We will spend 30-60 minutes writing, exchanging ideas etc.  I will assign each person ONE item to do Saturday night.  Have fun with this, and help create a backstory that will SELL our products!


Friday, November 5, 2010

Tagging Help!

What is tagging? 

Understanding tagging and the importance of tagging can help you become more visible.
Tagging on Etsy and many websites is a way to attach keywords to your listing.  The tags are mainly used for the internal search engine of each site.  Meaning your tags are for people using Etsy's search engine, not google or other search engines.  Although it is said the top few tags can pop up on external search engines such as google.  TAGS are important in your listings but also in your treasuries.  Remember tags are how you will be found within Etsy.

So what does this mean for you and your shop?

The holidays are upon us!  Shopping is happening now, so it is important to get your shop as visible as possible now!

You need to figure out what do your potential customers search for? What words do they use to find the product you are selling? 
I have this article on the etsy storque bookmarked and use it for almost every listing I make.  It is extremely helpful in getting your mind working on descriptions you may not normally think of.

I would highly recommend that you use as many colors and shades of those colors as tags.  Use foods that are commonly associated with a color, like red could also be Strawberry and sounds so much more appealing doesn't it?  One advantage to including colors is that you will usually be put into more treasuries on Etsy.  Most people think of a treasury theme, based upon colors, so your tags help people find your items to put into treasuries.  Treasuries mean more exposure and the possibility of a front page feature even!!

A few tips
1.  Use all 14 tag slots.  Each tag is another avenue for your customers to find you!!
2.  Don't repeat words.  For instance if you say swarovski crystal in one tag, you don't need to put crystal into another tag.  It is a waste of one of those precious slots because you will already be included in a crystal search since the word crystal was used with "swarovski crystal".
3.  Include your shop name in a few tags, this way if someone tries to search for you at least a few items will pop up in the search
4.  Vary your tags from listing to listing.  Even if you have 20 cards of similar technique and materials try to use a variety of tags in each listing.  Again it is about visibility.
5.  If the keyword is in your title, or the 1st line of your description it doesn't need to be a tag too.  Etsy uses your title and the beginning part of your description to help with search engine results, plus google views your 1st line of your description.  So don't duplicate, it is a waste of space!

***** FINAL NOTE ***  To me this is a nugget of information I do not give out much.  But to help find other shades and colors and terms to use I go to Wiki Colors:
Huge list of every color you could imagine.

Also, check out this site for a tagging tool!

I hope this helps you some.


Thursday, October 28, 2010

Operation Care Package! Support our Troops over the Holidays

Many of you may not know I served 6 years on active duty in the Navy.  In 2003 when the war in Iraq started my ship was deployed to the gulf.   I was a corpsman/medic.

Most deployments were a minimum of 6 months, many are a year or more.  It is an isolating time.  Very little contact with family or friends, because the mail can take up to 5 weeks or more to arrive.  They only deliver mail once a week or so depending on the location of your units, access and safety.  When troops are out on jobs/tours they don't have access to run to the local store for some more toothpaste, or socks.  They don't have the basics let alone any extras.  They rely on those few packages that arrive.  The arrival of packages is so exciting, it is a little piece of home and of love.  The few reminders we have that someone has thought of us when most days we don't have a minute to think of ourselves let alone our loved ones. 

It is that time of year again...  Every year I try to raise donations for our troops through an official non-profit association.  This is a Tax deductable donation.

There are MANY ways to participate.  This is our chance to pay it forward and to make sure all of our deployed and injured troops feel our love during the holidays.

This is the website with TONS of information on their non-profit status and where donations can be sent, HUGE lists of items they could use etc.

Are you a school teacher?  They LOVE receiving hand drawn/painted items from kids.  Get your class to send a box of hand notes from the kids.

Are you short on money yourself and don't know how to help?  Send your used books, and magazines.  They love to read a readers digest, to US News, to a novel.  Don't forget there are a lot of women deployed now too, so even your old romance novels could be sent.  Help clean out your house, and pay it forward to someone in need.

The dollar store is a really good place to go.  For 1 dollar you can find packs of things.  They need socks, to handheld games, bibles, books etc.  All can be found for one single dollar.

Another very affordable site that has 1000's of items is:

Do you sew?  They need hygiene bags for the hospitals.
Support our Troops by sewing a Hygiene Bag

Free Patterns and Information:

Other sewing projects include:
Cool scarves - Travel Pillows - Back & Neck warmers - Draw string Bags
Neck gators - Twin Size Quilts For more info contact:
Debbie @

If you don't want to shop, or ship items you can simply make a cash donation to this organization for a tax deductible donation. 

Things to keep in mind.  There are extreme heat conditions in the middle east, so food shouldn't be meltable, everything should be individually wrapped. 

This organization has a list of specific names of troops to send these donations too.  As many of you know you can not send a random package just addressed to a base, or unit.  There has to be a recipient named on the package, and this organization does that.
You can also submit the name of someone you know to be on their list.

All donations/packages can be mailed here:  DEADLINE THANKSGIVING Nov. 24th. Have to arrive to them no later than November 24th!!
Operation Care Package
611 Wilcox St.
Joliet, Il. 60435

I live in Maryland so I also try to do my part for the local troops that are injured and unable to go home.  Being a corpsman/medic makes me more aware of the needs of those in hospitals with injuries.  I live near Walter Reed Army Hospital which is where most injured troops go if they are seriously injured.  I also only live 10 minutes from Andrews Air Force base where they have 2 fisher houses.  Fisher houses are literally houses where they have injured troops AND their families.  This way the injured person isn't alone, they can go through therapy with their children and spouses.  But they are unable to go home because of their injuries.  I try to gather donations for theses locations that are frequently over looked by the big organizations.

If you are interested in helping some of the local troops please send me an e-mail for more information.  The deadline for the local troops is December 15th.  No later than Dec. 15th.

Last year I got boxes of crew socks, gym shorts, xmas stockings filled with goodies, handheld games, books, one etsy shop donated their drawings that were spiritual/inspirational.  The women that helps run the fisher house was in tears.  She said no one ever does that for them.  It was one of the best moments of my life.

If you are unable to donate, or shop and ship... please at least help spread the word.  Blog about this.  You have permission to copy and paste this post to your own blogs.  Tweet it, post it to your etsy teams, to your churches, to your schools!  Just spreading the word is a huge help.

**** FINAL NOTE ***  This has nothing to do with if you supported the war or were against it.  Many of our deployed troops weren't aware this war would happen when they signed up and whether they agreed or not they answered the call to serve our country.  Please don't let politics interfere with supporting those serving us during this special time of year.

Thanks everyone!!

Monday, October 25, 2010

2 New Lines of Button Earrings!

My etsy shop is known for the unique Button Jewelry I make.   Up until now I have mostly carried button rings, and recently expanded to button necklaces.

Now I have matching Button Post Earrings to go with these necklaces!

I also have a gorgeous line of Swarovski Crystal Elements button Rings.

NOW a new line of Swarovski crystal elements Earrings to match!

I am very excited to be adding these new earrings and necklaces!  So please keep a close eye on my shop as I slowly add more.  I also have stunning Swarovski elements Pendant necklaces coming soon!

Thanks so much.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Customer Service and Feedback

This post is about how to create a positive experience in your store both from the seller and buyer perspective.  I will hopefully cover some basic Do's and Don'ts... and give some perspective as to how I personally treat my etsy store. 

Etsy has a TON of articles on customer service and I will share some of those links in here as extra information.

The most important piece of advice I can give is to put yourself into the shoes of the other person and COMMUNICATE!


Here is a scenario to help put this into perspective.  Let's say you purchased several items from a shop, that has mostly positive feedback.  It is something you really want, and are excited to get.  After 5 or so days you start running to the mailbox each day, looking..... but nothing.  A week since you ordered and you are still anxiously looking for a package in the mail, but nothing.  Almost 2 weeks have gone by and still no order, and there hasn't been a single conversation between you and the seller at this point.  You start to get nervous, they seem repuatable with their feedback, but why would it take so long and why wouldn't the seller contact you if there was a problem??  You review their policies and shop again to make sure you didn't miss anything.  Their policies state,  all items will ship within 7 business days and it has been almost 2 weeks now.  So you contact them. 

***** At this point the customer is put in a bad position.  If you know there is a delay or problem be UPFRONT.  Don't wait for a customer to call you out.  And do NOT lie about it.  These will all lead to trust issues, and frustration.  ********

You feel uncomfortable to have to contact them and ask, but you want to know where your item is.  The good news:  the seller does respond and in a fairly quick timeframe, within 24 hours of your request.  The bad news: they only write a 2 line message, as if they are being bothered, and they state that the order is going out in the am.  Now you are completely disappointed, it hasn't been mailed yet?  Why didn't they tell you this?  Why do you have to contact them to find this out? 
But, at least you know the seller is still around, and is mailing it and now within a few days you should finally have your goodies!!  5 days later and still nothing.  You are checking that mailbox every day, and every day now for 3 weeks you have been disappointed.  The frustration is building, and FINALLY the box arrives!  YEAH!  You notice that the postmarked date is 3 days later than the person said it would arrive.  Now the patience is really running thin.  The seller clearly didn't ship in a timely manner, then lied about when they were shipping, and never bothered to tell you what was going on....

You rip open the packaging, get to the 2 boxes inside and you immediately see damage.  It is obvious from the outside that when you open.... this it isn't going to be pretty.  In the back of your mind you are still hoping it can be salvaged, because you couldn't have waited just about a month now for this??  As you open the box you are still trying to remain hopeful but all hope is quickly gone when you see a big pile of mess. 

How disappointing, to check and check every single day for just about a month for this package then you finally get it and now it isn't useable.  You take pictures of the box and the contents inside the box and dread having to send this to the seller.  You know that they aren't going to be happy with this, because their non-chalant response before shows a lack of sympathy.  Plus they lied about when it was mailed.  There is a pattern now that would make it seem like this is a careless seller.  You write a thought out convo to the seller that you are really sorry to have to bother them but... you explain what has happened and attach pictures.  You let them know you are very frustrated at this point to have the delays and now this.  And the convo is sent with pictures within hours of receiving the package so there can't be a dispute.  Now you have to anxiously wait for a solution/answer.  Again the seller does respond, within 24 hours.... but the response isn't moving.  Very unsympathetic.  There is information about a personal situation, they do say I am sorry but the apology is just thrown in, right in the middle of  I can't understand how that happened, I have been going through ____ (insert personal issues),  I will refund your money. 
That is the end of the transaction, you have your money back.
Does that sound like a positive transaction/experience?  Would you be satisfied to just have your money thrown back at you? 

*** If you are truly sorry and want your customer happy then you don't make excuses and you sincerely apologize.  A quick, well I am sorry thrown in the middle of other crap isn't going to cut it.  Be sincere and show sympathy towards the situation.  Express how you can relate/understand their frustration.  Showing a compassion of your customers feelings and situation is most important at this point if you want to try to end things on a positive note.

So many lessons can be learned from this scenario.  I am not one to say the customer is ALWAYS right.  Just because we are a business doesn't mean we have to take abuse, so there IS a line between me and my customers.  BUT the priority should always be the customer and doing all we can to make them happy.

So how could this have been handled?  What could have been done differently?
There are so many options here that weren't done.


1.  Don't make excuses or put personal things onto your customers.  If you are having a rough time in your private life that should never be put onto your customer.  Can you imagine walking into a home depot, or any major department store and them telling you I am sorry you want this, but we don't have it in stock and won't get it for 3 weeks because I had a wedding to go to, or someone died in our family etc.  The show must go on in business, our customers don't wait for us, and don't have to wait with so many other stores available with just as nice items.   The competition is too good with a place like Etsy providing hundreds upon thousands of shops.  Your customers don't need this and won't come back if they have to deal with this.

 2.  Come up with a plan:  In etsy we have more options then most businesses.  We can actually put our shops in vacation mode and take a break.  Most businesses can't afford a break like that, they would have someone filling in and making things happen.  So, I highly recommend taking advantage of this feature if you are overwhelmed.  If you have outstanding orders and THEN a situation arises you can always cancel those orders explaining the circumstances, refund and profusely apologize.  OR put your shop in vacation mode and get those orders out asap so that you can do what you need to do for yourself. Of course communicating with your customers throughout as you get their orders done.   But don't mix personal issues with your business.  It will never end positively if you do.

3.  COMMUNICATION:  Another thing that could have been done differently and is absolutely KEY in customer service is to COMMUNICATE.  Anytime a customer is involved the absolute best thing you could ever do is to be upfront, honest and communicate.  Of course you can always over-do something but it is imperative that you let your customer know what is going on.  Especially when dealing with customers through the internet.  Without face to face contact it is hard to truly connect with customers, and build trust.  Communication is the key to building trust.  How many of you would have cancelled the order if you received a convo saying, "I greatly appreciate your business and would love for you to have ___.  I unfortunately won't be able to get this mailed to you until ___.  If you are ok with that wait time I would love to do this.  I will of course keep you posted if anything should change.  Please let me know your preference, I can cancel the sale and refund immediately if you would rather not wait.  Thank you." 

If you know what is going on then you can plan and accept the situation.  In the initial scenario one or 2 convo's could have gone a LONG way.

And GIVE OUT HONEST information!  Don't say you are shipping tomorrow if you aren't.  If you say you are shipping tomorrow and now you can't, tell the customer the change in plans.  Do not leave the customer in the dark!

4.  GIVE OPTIONS.   Give your customer options.  If your goal is to make your customers happy, and your business is based upon this.... then you need to make their needs the priority.  Throwing money back at a customer does not make frustration, and disappointment go away.  Especially if you don't even ask what the customer wants, maybe they do just want their money back.  But you don't know unless you ask.  My parents house burned down last year and I had several orders that were hard to get out.  I convo'd each person and told them how much I appreciate their business and that I would truly love to do these orders for them but that I would need more time than usual.  I gave them a timeline and then said, I want you to be happy.  SO it is up to you, are you ok with waiting?  Or would you prefer your money back at this point?  Of course be apologetic, empathetic and sympathetic to them.  I also stated that I would keep in touch throughout the next several weeks so that they would know I am around and working and have not forgotten them.  100% of those customers waited, and gave positive feedback.  They didn't care about waiting, they cared about being taken care of.  They cared about the fact that I made sure they didn't feel like I was scamming them, or ripping them off, or ignoring them.... and that they got what they paid for.
I also included a few nice extras in the package when it finally arrived as a special thank you for their understanding and patience.  Because I truly appreciate each customer and especially those that were so understanding.   

Feedback (as a seller)

With that said, let's say you feel you offered what you can and the customer isn't happy?  What if they weren't happy?  What if they decide to leave negative feedback?  You will never be able to keep 100% of the people you come in contact with happy.  It isn't possible.  But the key is to remain focused on the fact that this is a business, and your reputation is on the line.  No matter how wrong you think they are, you have to keep your cool and be professional.   This doesn't mean you allow yourself to be taken advantage of but that you leave factual feedback.  So close out a transaction that hasn't been resolved......

Keep in mind what feedback is for.  It is for information on a specific transaction.  It isn't about your personal life... it is about how did this transaction transpire?  As a seller your feedback to the buyer is about the buyers responsibilities.  Their end of the transaction.  Did they pay you immediately?
Did they contact you within a reasonable amount of time with a problem?  Did they give you the opportunity to fix the situation?  If they did their part and left you negative feedback you can not and should NOT leave negative feedback for them.  Being angry and retaliating will only reflect poorly upon you and your business.

It is hurtful to realize that YOU didn't do your part.  If you didn't ship for 3 weeks, didn't communicate, didn't package well etc.  It is very hard to accept that.  It is probably embarassing or SHOULD be embarassing if you have any integrity.

 BUT as a business you have to be responsible and accountable.  You can't take it out on your customer now because you didn't do your part, or because they are rightfully upset with you.  Man up, take your negative and then leave honest feedback in return.

Honest feedback would be feedback that only addresses the facts of the situation.  For example, "I offered a refund, communication was sent on __ date and __ date.:  Or,   "A  refund was offered in the beginning when I knew I would have a delay and the customer declined and wanted to wait."  Then give a timeline, and facts such as each time you communicated throughout the process. 
Honest feedback contains information that only applies to the CURRENT transaction.
Honest feedback speaks of only the facts involved.  There is some debate over what a buyer's obligations are, and when to leave feedback...such as a seller should leave feedback once payment was made, since that fulfills the buyers obligations (just an example, not a statement that I necessarily agree with)  that is not the focus of this particular blog post. 

***FINAL NOTE***  Have you ever hesitated to leave feedback for an order you weren't happy with?  Were you worried about the possible ramifications if you left negative feedback when it was warranted?
The feedback system is definitely flawed.  It is based upon "integrity".  This means I should be able to leave honest feedback if a seller didn't communicate and I had to wait 3-4 weeks for my order and then the order was damaged.... without worrying about retaliatory feedback.  BUT obviously that is not very possible.  So look at feedback with a grain of salt and give your customers credit that they are smart enough to see vengeful feedback that contains no facts. 

And do the right thing, leave HONEST feedback.
If you don't leave feedback when you have a negative experience you are setting up the next person to have to go through what you just did.  It is irresponsible to be dishonest in your feedback, because you put other buyers at risk when they think this seller is reputable and they aren't. 
Feedback should be used to help other customers know what to expect.  Don't allow me to be scammed, after you were scammed because you are worried about a few bad apples out there that will make it personal and retaliate.  That is my personal opinion on feedback and the importance of it being honest, despite those that make us want to run and hide from it to avoid retaliation.

Here are some really great articles from the Etsy storque on more tips about communication, packaging, shipping policies etc.  Make sure you are as detailed as possible to prevent these situation but know that sometimes things can not be avoided.


Friday, October 22, 2010

Let's get Kaboodling!

What is Kaboodle?
This is what kaboodle says about itself, "Kaboodle is the most fun social shopping network on the web! It's a place where you can express your own style and meet other stylish people by discovering, recommending, and sharing products.

Most exciting, Kaboodle allows you to add and save products from almost anywhere on the web to your shopping lists and wish lists with the easy-to-use Kaboodle button. The button automatically downloads the essential details of a product, including its image, short description, and price and saves it to your list of choice. To learn more about the Kaboodle button and all the other awesome features Kaboodle has to offer, Take the Tour of Kaboodle or jump right in by downloading the Kaboodle button now!"

I find kaboodle to be much more interactive then stumbleupon.  So I hope you give it a try.

How to Use?
You can use kaboodle like you do stumbleupon.  They have an easy to download toolbar.
Here is the link to the Toolbar:

If you don't want to download the toolbar you can share etsy items by going to the page you want to share... scroll down until you see the orange "share" button on the right.  Once you click on that other options open, one of which is kaboodle.  Use that.

In kaboodle you can create lists.  Jewelry, fine art prints, holiday wish list etc.  You name it you can make it and then when you share an item you can organize the items into your lists.
You are also given the opportunity to fill in a description and tags of the items you are sharing.  It takes 30 seconds to do and can really help others find these items.  So if you can fill those in when you are sharing.

Kaboodle also had ezines/blogs that you can do and share with friends.  It is very interactive and fun.

*** Here are their facts and questions to answer ALL of your questions as to how to make a list, to how to share these items, how to bookmark etc.

*** FINAL NOTE ***  I can not be held responsible for the content of this site, and we are not affiliated with kaboodle.  As with most social bookmarking sites it is frowned upon to use them for self promotion or to spam with repeated submissions from the same place.  Use these to share your favorite etsy shops and items but also use the site for all things you love.

Have fun with it!!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

What is Stumbling and How you can Use Stumbleupon

In our new Promotional Frenzy thread we are striving to promote each other's shops around the internet for maximum exposure to our shops.

One site that is fun to use is

What is Stumble Upon?
It is basically a social bookmarking site. As you surf the web, or ETSY you can submit something you love to the site. It will store those bookmarks for you as "favorites".  The nice thing is if you are on vacation you can go to any computer and still find your favorite items without having your own computer.  Just log into your stumbleupon account to find them.

Once you have a collection of things bookmarked you can click on their green button "stumble" and the site will show you a list of items/sites that it thinks may interest you.  This way you can find things you wouldn't normally "stumbleupon".

*** IMPORTANT**  This site frowns upon self promotion.  That isn't their goal/vision/purpose.  And they can close your account if they find that is happening.   They will close/disable your account if they believe you are abusing their site, or spamming. 

                                         How to Use Stumbleupon:

The easiest way is to download their toolbar.  Here is the toolbar:

You then go to the product page or website you like and want to share.  Once on the page you want to share you can click the little green icon SU.

If that page or item has not been shared to the site yet you will see a screen asking for more input.  The more information you provide the better visibility that item/page will gain.  Keywords, and tags are important to be found.  If you can enter some basic information and click save.

If the page HAS been shared to stumbleupon before then it is a matter of rating the item with a thumbs up or a thumbs down.  Doing this is just as important as sharing new items, because the more ratings an item receives the more visibility it will gain.

***You should be stumbling blogs you like, any website/product you like etc.  Don't just stumble from etsy only, or only stumble a lot in a row because these habits/patterns will likely get your account closed.****

Without the Toolbar:
If you prefer to not use the toolbar they provide then Etsy does have a share feature within its site to make it easier.  Once you are on the page you want to share, about halfway down on the right you will see an orange "share" button.  Click on that and it will expand with a bunch of options.  You can pick which venue you want to share with from there.  Stumbleupon is one of the options, plus tumblr and several others.

When you are logged in, you can click on favorites at the top of the screen to see all the items you have shared.
If you want to find something new, click on the "stumble" button and it will give you a list of items that may interest you.

It is not required to have a huge following on stumbleupon to gain views.  But let's face it, it will be more fun if we are able to network, connect and see things we all like.  So if you want to find other stumblers, click on your username/profile at the top.  You will see on the right "favorites" "followers" "following".  Click following.  Then towards the bottom right side is find other stumblers.  Put in the name of each other to find your friends.

Stumbleupon has wonderful "help" tools to help you as you go.
Here is their guide on how to stumble:

***FINAL NOTE *** This is not an endorsement of stumbleupon or stumblexchange  and I am not responsible for their content.

Another site you might want to look at is:
This site helps you exchange your stumbles with other users.  So if you don't have a huge following yet you can use this site to help give a boost.

I hope this helps some.
It is fun, and exciting to see so many new items this way.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Tuesday - Promotional Frenzy

Promotional Frenzies:

Find the Thread Labeled Monday Frenzy and read the 1st post of that thread to learn all the details. 

Each shop will post 1 link to an item they want to get more exposure to. Please call out that you are adding an item to the list before editing the list.  This way we can make sure that 2 people aren't editing at the same time and someone gets dropped from the list.

Things to Do To Prepare:
1.  Pick out one item you want to have promoted and copy that link.
2.  Go to At the very top of the screen there is "home" then "heartomatic" click on that tab.  Below that is an option to sign in with your username, sign in.  Then to the right of where you just signed in is a button "reset views" click on that.  This way you will be able to see a clear jump in your views from this promotion.
3.  Get ready to chat, have fun, and click some share buttons :)

Ways to Promote:
By promoting it can be blogging, tweeting, facebook, stumbleupon, kaboodle, tumblr, ANY social nework or in etsy threads etc.

1.  Some choose to collect all the links and do one blog post highlighting all the items.

2.  You can tweet or add the item to your facebook page but we do have quite a few links put out during this time I would recommend you use multiple venues to promote so that you don't overwhelm or frustrate your friends and followers.

3.  Another site to consider:
Go to  Sign up is real quick (free and easy)
Here is a blog post with all the details about how to use this site:

If you can download the toolbar then you will have a share button at the top of your internet screen. Anytime you are on a product page, click that share button and then put it into your favorites. Then over the next month as we keep doing this for each other, check your Google analytics and I bet you will see traffic from it!!

Here is the toolbar:

4. (again quick and free)  Here is a blog post all about Kaboodle if you aren't familiar:

Here is the link to the Toolbar:

5. The easiest way to use this is to go to the link you want to promote on etsy, then scroll down on the right side of the Etsy page you will see a "share" button.  Click on that, and it will expand to a lot of options.  Click Tumblr to share to it.  It will walk you through the set up from there.

More options will be coming as we go.  But this is a great start.  You do not have to have all of these or do all of them they are just options.

See you on Tuesdays:


Sunday, October 17, 2010

TREASURY Challenge

 If you have never done a treasury before I will help guide you through it.  The hardest part is finding the perfect things to include. :)  Please find our Treasury thread under team discussions and read the 1st post for all the rules.

You do not have to fill all the spots with shops from our team, but we require 12 of the 16 slots to be used from our team shops if you want maximum support and exposure.   If you are unable or not quite ready to make a treasury you can still support by clicking on items in the treasuries, commenting on them, and help promote the links to your friends and on social networks.

How To Make A Treasury:
Etsy Storque article on how to make one:

1.  On the etsy home page, page down until you see on the left, "ways to shop", under that is Treasury.  Click on Treasury.

2.  On the right of that screen you will see a blue button, "create a list" click on that.

3.  Title:  The next screen has a lot of blank options.  1st thing is to think of a title.  Something catchy, unique, or meaningful would be good. 

4.  Description:   Here you can write what inspired you to create the treasury.  If you are highlighting our thread members you could put a link to our thread in this description.

5.  Tags:  To the right of description is a blue button that says add tag.  This is just like the tags you use when you list an item in your shop.  Use keywords to help people find your treasury.  Add the tag and click add tag, repeat that until all the tag spots are full.  Please put Promotional Frenzy into the tags to help us find all our treasuries.   

If you didn't know this, Etsy puts out once a month, "Etsy Merchandising" articles. 
These articles discuss upcoming trends and holiday/events to be mindful of.  Things like styles and colors to watch for are listed.  Etsy tries to promote these particular lists.  So if you can try to create treasuries based around those lists we have a higher chance of the treasury gaining visibility.  These are the things Etsy wants to feature on the front page.  So for example Octobers merchandising article talks about Halloween and fall items.  So try to use those type of items in your treasury and then tag with those keywords.

6.  Find the items:  Now the fun part!  Go through different shops and find items to use.  Once you find an item you want to include you just copy the URL (www web address) and paste it into each box you see.  There are 16 slots to fill.  Once you fill all the spots Click the blue Save button at the bottom right.
For best results build your treasury around a theme.  You can pick a color or a any theme you can think of like butterflies... then find photo's that all coordinate and look like a collection together.  It is helpful to use photo's that have similar backgrounds for a more cohesive look.

It is always good to convo each person you include in your treasury that you have included them and provide them a link to the treasury.  This way they can click, comment and help promote.  They want the exposure and will usually help promote your treasury for you.  If you have included non-team shops in the treasury, in your convo you could tell them the treasury if for a team you are on, and maybe help promote the team that way!

Helpful tips:
* Create a Mood
* Find Items that are well-made
* Choose some type of theme; colors, topic, and/or texture or material
* Try to fill it with a variety of mediums (to appeal to a wider audience), soaps, jewelry, food, knit etc.
* Make sure pictures are clear and the item is easy to see
* The consistancy of style of backgrounds in photos can make a difference too
* Also take into account the season and what seems to be in style currently (but not always necessary, sometimes your treasury can seek to SET trends)

Again you can use the etsy merchandising Storque articles for ideas of what theme, topic etc. to do.

Please have fun with this.  Enjoy the opportunity to look through shops, discover new items, and promote.

Once you have saved your treasury post it in our TREASURY THREAD under the team discussions.

*** ONE FINAL NOTE ***  Treasuries are used as a means to promote others.  Etsy generally frowns upon treasuries that include yourself.  You are allowed to put one item of your own in a treasury but they will not put that item on the front page.  And many feel strongly that you shouldn't include it since the idea of a treasury is to feature others. 

Etsy will not put items on the front page that have watermarks.  If you put your shop name on your pics, or the date then it is unlikely you will get as much exposure.


Saturday, October 16, 2010

Solo Promotional Frenzy - 30 minute Frenzy

Solo promotional event.  We will use the list on my blog of active shops, and go through it alphabetically for each person to have a turn.

Here is what you can expect.  The promoting starts at 9pm Est time.  It will last 30 minutes.  Everyone in the thread will go to her shop, and post their favorite piece to the thread.  Then everyone will help promote those items throughout the internet. 

Ways to help promote: 
1.  Blog about this event and link to her shop.
2.  Tweet about your favorite item from her shop
3. Share an item from her shop to Facebook
4.  Share an item from her shop to
5.  Convo your friends to join us 
6.  Use any social network to help, and join in the thread to have fun.

There may be offers for specials during these 30 minute spot, so come out and join the fun and see what exposure and sales people get!


Friday, October 15, 2010

Blog Challenge Details

For Blog Challenge day if you don't have a blog it is the day to start one.  It is a day to update the list of shops from our team into your blog... and it is the day to BLOG!  Write about something.  Under our team, click on discussions and find the WEDNESDAY Blog thread.  The very 1st post of this thread will tell you all the details you need to know about that week's challenge.  It can change from time to time so please read that first post!!

If you don't have a list of our shops on your blog you should consider adding one.  Here is a link to a blog post on how to add a list:

How to add the Shop List to Your Blog:

You can write about any topic you like... but here are a few ideas to get you started.

1. Pick a shop from our thread to feature.  Write what their shop sells, why you like them, and list 2-3 items that are your favorites.  Post pictures to those items, and put a link below the pics.

2.  Write about your experience so far in the thread.  What you like, what you have learned, what there is to gain from it and why others shoudl join.

3.  Friday Finds:  Use the Etsy pounce feature, or a few of your favorite items in your etsy and write about those that you love.  Write about the newest shop from pounce, and you enjoyed their shop.  Always try to include 2-3 pics and links to those items.

4.  Upcoming line/new Product - Write about the lastest creation you are working on and when they can expect to see it.  Include some pics and links to your shop.
5.  Highlight the next Frenzy for Tuesday, October 19th 9pm Est/Etsy in our thread.

6.  Upcoming craft shows or other Events.  BNR's coming up etc.

You can always write about anything going on personal, to give everyone a little insight into you and who you really are. 

Good luck!  Post the links to all of your new blog posts in our thread, and PLEASE comment on each others posts. 

See you guys tomorrow night.

Monday, October 11, 2010

New Promotional Frenzy Thread - Huge Opportunity

Do you want more exposure to your etsy shop?  Do you need more views, sales, and improved Search Engine Optimization (SEO)?

A team on Etsy is starting to help you:  "Promotional Frenzy"

We are a group/team of people wanting to combine our efforts to gain more than we could on our own.  The heart of this group is for promotions.  We are a very nice group, and supportive and will help each other as much as we can, but the idea is to gain more momentum to the shops who participate.

Each day I will post in the thread what to expect for that day, and you can find posts here in this blog that will describe in detail how to participate.  So don't get overwhelmed.  If this seems like a lot, just join in with the thread for that day and go one day at a time.  This information is here to help answer all the questions that have come up but if it seems like too much it is ok... just join the thread and read about that days events.  Take it one day at a time.

The ONLY requirement for this thread is that you are willing to promote others and can participate in at least ONE activity per week (approximately 30 minutes).  Promoting can mean many things, you can help promote within etsy by creating treasuries of other shops, you can post within other etsy threads to help, or you can use social networks like twitter, stumbleupon, or a blog.  It is NOT required that you do them all.  But please understand that you get what you give.  If only 4-5 of us within the thread do these things then none of us will see a noticeable impact on our shops.  If you want to see a noticeable difference then each of these activites are highly recommened.  And we wouldn't expect you to figure them all out and do them all in a few days either.  It is ok if you don't have any set up to join us and get help with getting started.

There will be a variety of events to help everyone.  The key is the more you give the more you will get.  These events work best if done with consistency/regularly.  So the more active you are the more you will see a difference.  We will help walk you through how to read your google analytics and use sites like to see changes with your shop.  If you already do some of these things on your own, we encourage you to join forces and do them with this thread.  There IS power in numbers.

We encourage everyone to give 30 minutes a day to these activities.  We will emphasize activites that will benefit YOU and your shop.  As a way to help encourage and motivate people there will be opportunities each day to do something productive for your shop.  Again these are NOT required, but highly encourage. And you do not have to participate every single day, just ONE EVENT PER WEEK.  Most of us are online much longer than 30 minutes a day, so it is just a matter of setting 30 minutes towards the promotion of your shop.

In between these small events you are free to promote each other on your own, and chat and have fun. 

This following is a list of goals we would like to strive for. Use this as motivation, and see the opportunity that these things could bring to you. 
 Again this is not required and can be done on different days but the more people who do these things each week the more impact we will all see in our shops.  Don't freak out that you won't have time for this.  It is only 10-30 minutes to do most of these.  You do not have to do all of these all at once.  Come in and try one or two and see how it goes and slowly work into other events as you go.

Monday:   Promo Frenzy - Each shop will post 1 link to an item they want to get more exposure to, using the Monday Thread in our discussions. Just add the link to the bottom of the list that is started that day. PLEASE READ THE TOP POST OF EACH THREAD to learn the details.  You must call out that you want to add to the list before changing the list.  Make sure no one else is editing at the same time.  Then we will each go through and promote that one item from each shop. By promoting it can be blogging, tweeting, facebook, stumbleupon, kaboodle, tumblr, ANY social nework or in etsy threads etc.

Tuesday: BNR Treasury Day.  We have several people helping to run these.  Right now the BNR is from 5pm - 9pm Est/Etsy time.  We have 80-100 sales in these few hours, it is really hot.  In our team, find the discussion for TUESDAY BNR thread and you will find all the details for each BNR.  The rules may vary so you have to read that first post in the thread to learn what we are doing.  This is a great opportunity to gain exposure within the Etsy Community
Wednesday: Blog Post day. This is a great opportunity to help spread the word about our BNR,  thread frenzy etc.  Write a blog post. The blog post can be about anything but try to mix it up and include the thread or shops from our thread when you can, since the point is to gain more visibility. If you don't have a blog yet this is a good opportunity to consider one, and to ask for help if you need it.  We will have special blog posts from time to time so again, please READ THE 1ST post of each thread to learn what we are doing that week.  You can find ideas for your blog here:

Thursday:  List at least one item that day, relisting/renewing can count.  But keep in mind that the more items in your shop the more visible you become on Etsy.   Find the thread for Thursday in our discussions, and post your new item to the list.  Again please make sure no one else is editing the list when you add your item, so that no one is dropped off the list by accident.  THEN go through the list and promote each new item through social networks.

FridayWorkshop Day!   Each  Friday will be a different topic.  Find the thread for FRIDAY Workshop and read the very 1st post to find out what we are doing.  The goal is to cover topics that will help us all improve our shops and take them to the next level.  We will cover topics on improving our pictures, to tagging help, help writing descriptions, to how to read google analytics. 
Saturday 9pm Etsy time (est):   OFF, just chat, post links, relax and recoup.

Sunday:  OFF, just chat, post links, relax and recoup

We do have one other activity that runs every single day.  TEAM TREASURIES!  We have a separate thread in our discussions for TREASURIES.  This thread will be restarted each week, so find the most recent date on the thread.  This is a place to make and promote treasuries that are for our teammates.  The rules to participate are on the very 1st post of the thread.  It doesn't take but 5 minutes if that to help with these so please take the time each day to try to help.
Find tons of info. on creating treasuries here:

Things you can expect from our thread:

1.  Promotional Frenzy Hours (Mondays)- We will use these Social Networking sites to promote items in each others shops.  We will most likely add others as we go.                                         

2.  Blogging:  We have set up a blogging network, where everyone has a blog list.  The list is is a collection our team shops who have a list on their blog, we put their shop name in, and it is clickable to the etsy shop.  This creates backlinks to all of the shops.  The more backlinks you have to your shop the more search engines can find your shop and will help your SEO.  You are not required to blog, but with this type of network you will see a huge difference from doing this.  You are also NOT required to blog about the thread only.  Although it is helpful if we do use our blogs to promote the thread and the shops within the thread since that will ultimately bring traffic to our shops it is NOT the only thing you can or should blog about.  If you have never blogged before it is ok, again we are here to help you get started.  Our list of shops is updated each Sunday, and only shops who have a blog and have the blog list of our shops will get onto our lists.  This is about reciprocation.

How to add the Shop List to Your Blog:­-participating-etsy.html

3.  Buy and Replace (BNR) Treasuries:  The shops that participate in our events will be chosen for these treasuries.  We will be holding a BNR often to help with sales and exposure.  You are encouraged to help spread the links to these around the internet, click, and comment on these.  Anyone can create a treasury and we encourage you to start one for the thread at any time.   If you don't know what a BNR is.... basically we feature 16 of our team shops in it and they get to stay in the treasury until someone buys from them.  Whoever buys from a shop will now replace that shop in the treasury and they will stay until they are bought from.  It is a lot of fun, huge buzz, good exposure and we have 80-100 sales during these.
4.  Treasury Frenzies: Even without front page hits, we will gain a lot of traffic from a treasury at the top of the "hot list".  We have a wonderful system going on, where most of our treasuries are receiving 1000's of views!  Find the Treasury thread under our discussions to participate.
Great info. on how to do this can be found here:

***Feel free to share your social networking links, blog links, flickr links etc. And when someone posts a new item you can help promote that item then, you don't have to wait for an event to promote.  The key is to stay for awhile and network and participate in all the events you can.****

Final note: if only a handful of us participate in these events there will not be a payoff.  So nothing is required but if you want to see success it would be highly benefical to get involved and do what you can.  The list of events is only a guide.  You can still list any day you want, blog anytime you want etc.  And please feel free to chat and have fun anytime.

Friday, October 8, 2010

My Pledge for Holiday Boot Camp on Etsy

I, __Janet (Galla15)___, pledge to participate in the Etsy Success Holiday Boot Camp to the best of my abilities. I vow to check in every week, do my homework and support my fellow Holiday Boot Campers. I will read the weekly newsletters and blog posts, check in on the weekly forum thread, read the weekly blog post, check off the checklists and salute the mascot. I promise to share what I've learned with those who need it, support my fellow Etsy indiepreneurs and, most of all, have a positive and persistent attitude. I understand that together we can spread the word about our handmade and vintage goods, making this holiday season a more unique and meaningful one to gift givers and give-ees everywhere!

How exciting is this?  You are going to see huge changes in my shop over the next month or so.  Please help support handmade and vintage goods by promoting Etsy shops for the holidays.  Give your wish list to your friends and family.

I will try to write weekly in my blog as to what the new items are for my shop and what boot camp has us doing.

This week I am adding a new line of earrings to my shop that will match my Swarovski Rings.
Here is my 1st listing of earrings:
These earrings pictured above will be added tonight!!
Keep an eye out for more button jewelry, and huge inventory influx.


Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Swarovski Ring Giveaway! Any Ring in my shop!!

Very simple, easy giveaway.  3 ways to get entered.

1.  You can also pop into this thread on Etsy and say Galla15 referred you for a 2nd entry into the giveaway.

2.  If you buy from someone on the list in that thread you will get 5 more entries into the giveaway.  There is no minimum purchase requirement.

3.  If you blog about this giveaway you will get 2 more entries into the giveaway.

This is for only 2 days, ends on the 30th at 1130pm EST/Etsy time.

I will make a list of those that leave comments, in the order of comment.  Comment #1 ___  etc.
And then use to draw the winning #.  One comment per person, additional comments do not count.

If you win, you get to pick out any ring from my shop.  Right now you can see my swarovski ring selection through my sold orders page the link is below.  I will customize the size of the ring, and ship it to you Monday of next week.  

Please share this blog, blog about the giveaway and tweet it between now and the 30th.


Monday, September 27, 2010

DIY Handmade Wedding Blog

I wanted to take this opportunity to tell you about a new blog.  It is a DIY Handmade wedding blog that will be promoting shops from Etsy that make items for weddings.

It is a beautiful blog run by
She has gorgeous, natural home decor items in her shop. 

Her wedding is in 2 weeks and she bought 100% of the items through Etsy and will be featuring those shops and items in her blog.  So please check out her blog on a regular basis to see all the amazing things she has for her upcoming wedding.
I hope you love this blog and will follow her.


Monday, September 13, 2010

Ulixis Crafts - More Meaningful Gifts Etsy

I recently stumbled upon a wonderful thread in the Etsy Forums called More Meaningful Gifts.  You can find the details here:

This thread has an amazing group of Etsy sellers, but today I want to highlight Ulixis Crafts who has been incredibly helpful to me.

She has 3 Etsy shops! 
Her main Etsy shop is her jewelry. Beads, chains, wire, stones and glass!

Paper Ulixis is her 3rd shop filled with paper, ink, fibers, glues. Beautiful tags, and notebooks can be found there.

Sew Ulixis is a shop filled with Fabric, quilt, cross-stitch and needle work.

Uli answered some questions to tell you about herself and her craft.  I hope you enjoy reading about her.

Would you tell me how you got started in your craft?

Really, I've always been crafty. I remember spending days in the summer crafting with my aunt - my favourite used to be wreathes, cross-stitch & beading. But of course I sort of lost touch with my crafty side during high school - too busy with science, math & boys! But after spending some time in University, I was itching to get my hands on something.

Why did you pick your craft?

I started out with notebooks because I LOVE notebooks. I have at least half a dozen on the go right now - blank & lined. But then I soon gravitated back to my old loves: cross-stitch & beading... and eventually picked up sewing because I've always admired my aunt (who used to make her own clothes).

When did you start?

I've been crafting for about 3 years now (not counting my childhood days).

Any interesting tid bits?

--> My degree will be an MSc - I'm looking at the link between obesity & asthma. In other words, I work with fat & airway muscle cells, seeing how the fat will affect the muscle's activity.

--> I just recently started adding paint to my mixed media work & I am LOVING it!

--> I'm Canadian & a sheltered one at that. I've only been out of the country 4 or 5 times - and only driving into the US. Actually, I haven't traveled that much within Canada either ... & I've never been in a plane (except once - a small propeller plane from Toronto to North Bay - my aunt [not the same one this time :P] works for the airline & the plane was heading back empty otherwise).

--> I'm a member of the MSOE team (mad scientist of etsy).

--> Pat & I have been together for 9 years. :)

Thanks Uli for all of your patience, help and support.