Today 1/13/17 a received a postcard with no address (meaning not even mine!) that says "It's your birthday" on the front, and has lots of pieces of colored glitter washi on the back. If you sent this, PLEASE let me know so I can thank you and solve the mystery of how it got to me, sans address!
~disclaimer...none of the artwork featured on my profile is my own. It is of art I've found inspiring in some way. You may view my art by clicking the link to my Flickr page above!
Squeeeeee...11-29-16 I reached over 1000 5's! It makes me so happy to have brightened that many mailboxes and peoples lives with my mail through Swap-bot!
I live in a rural area, and our post office isn't always as precise as it should be with placing postage on envelopes, or handling packages. If you ever receive a swap or tag from me with postage due, or simply do not receive a swap or tag, PLEASE let me know! I always send my stuff, and unless it's a simple card, I always take it to the post office. I will always reimburse you postage costs, and work to find or replace lost mail! Likewise, things do not always get postmarked when I drop them off, sometimes they are postmarked at the sorting facility which can be several days after I've dropped them at the local office. If you ever have any question as to when something was mailed, you can note the date it was marked sent. I do not mark things sent unless I have physically placed them in the mailbox, or dropped them at the post office.
I have a pretty extensive profile, so grab a cup of coffee or tea and stay awhile...or if you prefer, just jump right to the most relevant information pertaining to the swap we are in!
I try always to rate the day I receive your swaps, but with a crazy busy life, occasionally things get missed. If you've sent your swap to me, and haven't received a rating, please let me know! Likewise, I almost always send my swaps out within 3 days of partners being assigned. If the swap date has closed and you haven't received something from me, please let me know because it has gotten lost in the mail. I ALWAYS, ALWAYS send out swaps of time. I don't sign up unless I can complete them!
I'm an extremely blessed, Christian mom of 5 beautiful children, aged 13, 11, 11, (twins) 6, and 5. My youngest two children we adopted from China, so international adoption and advocacy are a huge part of our lives! We love the Chinese culture, and hope to be able to go back one day to visit.
Adoption is a journey. If you or someone you know is interested in learning more about adoption, please let me know and I will help you with some resources!
Four of our five children have special needs, so I always love connecting with other moms who have special kids! I'm married to my soulmate, and we will be celebrating 18 years together in January. We are 3 years into our homeschool journey and are having a blast teaching our kids in a real "hands on" way with lots of nature walks, and visiting new and interesting places. We also love pets, and currently have 4 cats, 4 hermit crabs, 4 budgies (parakeets,) and 25-30ish chickens. (I'm allergic to dogs, so we enjoy visiting my parents dogs who live next door.) We raise chickens for the eggs, and have some that lay white, blue, green, dark olive green, light brown, and chocolate brown eggs. I also love to cook (especially bake,) and I hoard recipes! I have about a dozen Pintrest boards devoted to recipes of all types from beverages to desserts to snacks to international. I adore good quality dark chocolate, reading, coffee, and anything art related! I'm an artist at heart, and I have taught mixed media classes, and classes on making ATC's and Inchies in the past. I love to alter almost anything, so you'll see me either participating or hosting lots of these type swaps ;-) If you're a mixed media artist, send me something you've made, and I'll adore it! I also love to sew, although I've not found time recently to do any. I've completed 3 bubble quilts, and a queen sized quilt top so far! I believe art takes many forms, and tattoos are one form I adore. Want to hear a funny story? Ask me how I got my first tattoo! I currently am working on a full sleeve on my left arm, and have the next piece in my head...I am getting it done January 12, 2017! Eeeeeeee!!!!!!
My belief system is basically this...treat others the way you want to be treated. I believe all people, should have the same rights and privileges. I understand not all people, especially Christians agree with that. I only share this because it's a huge part of the person that I am. I believe God wants us to love one another, and I strive every day to do that through my actions, and to share what I can through the abilities He has given me. I do not tolerate people who are judgmental and I abhor intolerance.
I have always been a very open minded, and I like to think, open hearted person. Through my years, I have done loads of volunteer work, everything from working in a vets office as a child, to volunteering at homeless shelters serving meals, to a semi permanent volunteer job at an HIV/AIDS clinic in my college days. I have donated blood most of my adult life, and part of the bone marrow donor registry, and I try to raise awareness about adoption. My latest volunteer job was to manage one of the local tornado relief centers when a rash of tornadoes swept through our state on April 28, 2014. I enjoy being able to help others in some small way, and feel the lord has blessed me in the ability to help.
I love to share my passions through private swaps, so if you see something in my profile that entices you, shoot me a message and we can work one out! I'm not a stickler for rules, but if you are sending to me and know you will be late, communication is vital. In all my time on swap-bot, I have only been flaked on a few times, and I know life happens, but please know I will rate according to swap-bot policy in almost all cases. I live with fibromyalgia, so my crafting sometimes takes a back seat when my hands don't want to cooperate. It's yet another reason I almost always send my swaps quickly. I usually always have a start, especially on labor intensive swaps before I even sign up. I will never send you something that I think is of sub-par quality, and it will never be quickly thrown together, rather I know to allow myself a few extra days in a swap in case my body needs them ;-)
I swap for the joy of swapping. This is my happy place, and I try to embody the true spirit and joy of swapping without being too critical or nit picky! If you receive something from me, it's something I've put time, thought, and love into. If for any reason it fails to meet your expectations, let me know and I will do my best to make it right. If you take the time to send me something, I would appreciate it if you show me the same curtesy. I love opening my mailbox each day and seeing what treasures await. Some days it's quite literally what gets me out of bed lately with all we've been going through! I'm quick to rate a heart if I can see you've put your best foot forward, and any effort into the swap, and I don't rate a 1 or a 3 unless you force my hand. I'll always try to work with you before rating down.
About my swap name...I am called Barbara by basically everyone who knows me. I once had a dear friend who called me Babs and that's where I got that part of my ID. The "mom of 5" part is pretty self explainatory, lol! So few people explain their choice of swapper ID but I find it interesting to find out how people chose one, so I figured why not explain my own for anyone else who might be curious!
I am an avid reader and I've a,ways got a few books going. Currently: Reading Hollow City, part of the "Peculiar Children" series by Ransom Riggs. While I am working on art projects, I am listening to the audiobook version of Diana Gabaldon's Outlander series and I'm on Written In My Own Heart's Blood. While hubby and I are in the car or just having a quiet moment together, we are listening to the audiobook version of Stephen King's Dark Tower series. We have listened to it before, but are enjoying going back through it after many years, and we are on The Wolves Of The Calla. I will read just about anything other than regency romance type books, (honestly any romance, Outlander series none withstanding, lol!) and anything that makes you cry. My favorite genres/authors include: Steohen King, Ted Dekker or spooky or horror related things, vampire/witch/elves/magical such as The Paper Magician, The Night Circus, or The Weather Warden series by Rachael Caine. I also enjoy true crime, and biographies on occasion. Science fiction is not really my favorite genre either...but I'm open to suggestions of things you love!
I am really easy to please. If you put any time and thought into what you send, I am sure I will adore it! This list is definitely not a comprehensive list of likes, simply another window into my world for those who feel they need one!
Current MOST needed items on my Wishlist are in bold
My very favorite color ever is sea green. It's nearly impossible to find as most things are more teal or turquoise, or a softer sea foam Cody mint green color, but I'm feeling love for pretty much all greens and blues and purples...and rose gold and copper are my favorite metallics!
I'm loving flip books, stuffed envies, handmade embellishments, handmade postcards, ATC's, APC's
Please share your favorite online resource for art and craft supplies! I love www.youratcstore.com and www.artfullymusing.com which generally uses products found at www.alphastamps.com I also love the Etsy shop 365 degrees north, and website www.deepredstamps.com
Birds, fairies, mermaids, black cats, (all cats!) toad stools, butterflies, angels, and chickens all make me happy!
I have received some of the most amazing chicken mail! I would LOVE to continue to get mail that features chicken anything, because it's just so unusual, lol!
Cool, funky, artsy, whimsical anything...images, stamps, art you've created
Beautiful Mail...any and all, nothing makes me happier than opening the mailbox and finding something amazing waiting for me!
pretty pieces of tissue paper (gift wrap type tissue) Tissue paper can even be used and folded! I use these for backgrounds in a lot of the art I create
books or articles on altered arts, mixed media technique, tattoos, or chickens...can be old editions and used or printed from the Internet
Anything in the style of Teesha Moore, Tim Holtz, Finnabair, etc. I love the vintage shabby and artsy eclectic styles of these artists, and use lots of their products, and similar product lines. Click each artists name to see their website!
Aren't these artists amazing?!?!
Other goodies that would make me giggle with delight...
cigar boxes that I can alter
Interesting or vintage high quality images to use in ATC, APC, PostCards, and Journals pages I create
Tarot cards, singles or a full deck
fibers, interesting ribbon, interesting yarn...for making tags and bookmarks
holiday shaped sequins which are also called table scatter, and micro beads in any color or theme
Sticker flakes... Especially Pusheen!
Tiny envelopes, especially tiny glassine envelopes
Unused Postage stamps, especially the lick and stick kind!
Pretty used postage stamps, especially from outside the USA
Unusual or pretty mailing labels I can use on packages and letters
Classic Winnie the Pooh, Alice in Wonderland, Wizard of Oz or Grimm fairy tale anything and everything
Woodland fairies, ladybugs, toadstools, elves, or foxes
Seeds for heirloom flowers and non gmo veggies or herbs, or empty packages from seeds you've used (I love to use these as envelopes in my art journals, or to include extras for swaps!)
dresden German scrap or trim, any style, any color
vintage or boho funky jewelry (can be broken) beads, metal pieces, charms, old typewriter keys, game pieces, etc... like this
Pens...any super smooth writing pen, prisma color pens, black micron pens 10 .08 .05 or .03, permapaque markers, brush pens, calligraphy nibs for pilot parallel pens in any colors, chalk pens and markers, gel pens, soufflé pens, a snow pen, moonlight pens, stardust pens, puff pens, etc! I have a need for therapy for my addiction to pens, lol!
Treats I enjoy: Dove dark chocolate with or without mint and nuts, trader Joes dark chocolate anything (except chili pepper,) and especially with caramel or sea salt. Trader Joe's speculoos cookies, or dark chocolate bars with speculoos butter ❤️ Ive also recently discovered I enjoy Russell Stover boxes of chocolate!
I don't wear make up, but I do love Burt's bees lip products, with or without color...anything but powder puff pink
Toys for our cats or chickens (would particularly love to get a baby mirror to go in our chicken coop...chickens love to look at themselves!
small wrapped gifts for My Christmas stocking(I collect gifts all year, and open one on days I really need a pick me up. I try to save as many as possible for Christmas )
I drink coffee from a keurig mainly, so any and all k-cups. I like flavored and plain, but not a huge fan of bold blends. (If you send it, I'll drink anything!) I do love southern sweet tea k-cups!
Would love to get cat or chicken salt and pepper shakers or small cream pitchers as I collect both!
Fresh Made taffy (if you live near a place that makes it daily...we only get it when we go to the mountains every 3-4 years.)
We also collect box tops for education. I turn all of these in through our homeschool association and get money back for school supplies.
Reading ...send me a list of great books you've read, I always love to find new things to read! (For high dollar swaps, iTunes or amazon gift cards...I read electronically, and listen to audiobooks)
I'm a cat and chicken lover. Send me stamps, stickers, washi, anything with cats or chickens, and I'll be one happy happy gal!
My hubby collects foreign currency so any and all foreign currency is welcome. (We do however have plenty of Chinese currency.)
I love to send postcards as extras and RAKS, and I Began post crossing again this past spring, so any and all postcards are appreciated! My favorites absolutely include frilly, sweet, pretty postcards...the type you find in specialty shops....(kind of the postcard equivalent to papyrus cards) I also prefer state map ones, especially Mississippi as I have nowhere to purchase these myself, well made handmade ones, and anything that you find interesting whether touristy or non touristy. The only postcards I simply can not use are super flimsy ones as they get torn up in the sorting machines. If you love postcards too, and would like to do a swap either for unused ones, or just swap a written and stamped one through the mail, let me know!
I LOVE to color! However, it's becoming harder for me as I begin to have more trouble with arthritis and fibromyalgia in my hands, sadly. I prefer designs that are more complicated and interesting than children's books, yet not too intricate and detailed that would take days or weeks to complete. If you want to make my day, send me a full sized page that you have completed, that is sent flat, unfolded for me to add to my collection book. Be sure to sign it!!! If you love to color too, please consider joining the Coloring In group...there are monthly US and International swaps, as well as lots of fun themed ones!
I also love to receive brush markers, and interesting pens like glaze or puff pens to add interest to the pages I have completed.
Coloring pages are awesome! I've found several new favorite artists from receiving coloring pages from others. If you have a favorite book, or online source for free or paid printable pages, I would love it if you'd share those with me! I now have a GIANT stack of coloring books and printed pages, so I really do not need any more at this time. I would however, always enjoy hearing of your personal favorites!
I am addicted to my planner! My main everyday, can't survive without it planner is an Erin Condren vertical layout planner, (Watercolor Shine cover.)
One of my most wanted items would be stickers for the unusual holidays each month!
I love anything and everything I can use to decorate it with. Washi, stickers, nail foil tape, sticky notes, page markers, QUOTES! I love quotes! I tape my favorites all over my planner pages.
Send me a list of your favorite planner resources! Do you have a favorite ETSY shop for stickers? Share it with me, along with why you love them. How about an unusual or favorite decorating technique? I recently learned about using thin nail foil tape to decorate with, and I am so hooked!
I would LOVE to have cat and chicken themed planner decor, and pretty much ANYTHING off or inspired by my etsy wishlists.
I typically follow the color themes for Erin Condren each month, however, I also like to use snowy and wintery type stuff for January, Valentine's in February, flowers and cute outdoor themes like kites and hit air balloons for March-May, red/white/blue or patriotic stuff for July, summer themes for June and August, fall leaves and woodland animals for September, vintage or cute Halloween stuff for October (no clowns) turkies, cornucopia, fall leaves, acorns, pumpkins, and thanksgiving themes for November, and vintage and traditional themed Christmas decor for December.
I'd especially like to receive elastic bands to go around my planner, an EC planner pouch to carry it in, nice pens, planner charms(especially handmade!), EC coil clips, EC compliment cards, or EC coloring books.
If you happen to have any stickers designed to match the colors in the EC planners leftover in your stash, I'd sure love to have them!
I've found that I also love The Planner Society items as well as the stickers and planner honeys by The Reset Girl
Things I don't need: School items (unless it's specifically off my etsy list because we homeschool)
A- adoption, Asian, altered, Angels, artistic, ATC's, antique, airmail, (classic) Alice In Wonderland
B- butterflies, blue, birds, (honey)bees, birthday's, box tops for education, books, book pages
C- CATS, CHICKENS, Christmas, Christian, crosses, Celtic, coffee, (foreign) currency
D- Dresden trims, dark chocolate, deco tape, Deep Red stamps
E- (images of) egg cartons, elves, ephemera, ETSY
F- foxes, Fenton style glass, flower tea, foreign (currency, and stamps) fibers, fairies, fairy tales, fabric, feathers
G- giraffes, glass, glassine envelopes, Grimm fairy tales, gardenia or green apple scented candles,
H- hens, hot air balloons, hedgehogs, hand carved stamps, handmade items, Huggies points
I- International adoption, inchies, ink pens, images (for creating ATC's and pocket letters)
J- (fabric) jelly rolls, jasmine tea,
K- keys, King cake, King crowns, Kawaii
L- lace, lip balm (organic or burts bees) ladybugs, (mailing) labels,
M- mushrooms, music, myths, mermaids, microbeads, music sheets, MMA
N- nests, narwhals,
O- octopus, odd, old, owls
P- pocket letters, pressed pennies, peacocks, postage stamps, planner goodies, pralines, pampers rewards points, postcards
Q- quail images, quizzes, quirky, quetzal images,
R- roosters, root beer, rubber stamps, recipes,
S- skeleton keys, STAR BUCKS, strange mail, stamps (old unused,) sequins, STICKER FLAKES, salt water taffy,
T- toadstools, twinchies, TAROT CARDS, twine, tattoos, Teesha Moore, (fresh made) taffy
U- unusual, unicorns
V- venti lattes, vintage,
W- weird mail, wings, winged things, whiskey, wands, Winnie the Pooh (classic style,) Wizard of Oz, Washi tape
Y- yesteryear, yin yang,
Z- zentangles, zen gardens, zebra items, zetti
I'm generally easy to please, and appreciate anything you take the time and money to send. I definitely have one steadfast rule...
I'm terrified of clowns...please don't send me mail with clown stamps, or stickers, or images.
Other things I prefer not to receive, but will work with you on include:
Please don't send me items with a strong smoke smell. My son has asthma that is triggered by smoke, and I have severe allergies affected by smoky packages, so this isn't merely a request of preference, but for health reasons. If you're a smoker, contact me privately and we can work something out, or at least I know to air the package/letter out before bringing it in.
Please don't send me anything with foul language or that's overtly sexual in nature...I often open mail with my kids present, so keep that in mind please...I don't mind nudes in art, ie the statue of David, but pictures of an orgy are a strong no. If you do feel like I would like something in your stash that falls in this category, please send it sealed in an envie clearly marked "not for prying eyes" and I'll be sure to open away from my children, however.
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