Happy summer! :-) I'm taking a break from Swap-bot to focus on family that needs some extra support right now . Sending you all best wishes and hoping to be back some day soon!
Please don't let my lengthy profile scare you, I just want to give a lot of options to make shopping for/sending to me easy and fun rather than a guessing game! :-)
To tell you a little about myself, I'm a mom of 2 elementary-aged children, married for 18 years to one of my best friends from high school. We met in a karate class...but that's another story! I turned 40 this summer, what what?! I'm just happy for every year I have--truly a gift!
I have a Master's in Education and was formerly a Spanish teacher and a talented & gifted education specialist. If you are Spanish-speaking, I am "Spanish reading"! ;-) Just go easy on me; my Spanish is getting very rusty! I am now enjoying staying home with my 2 kiddos (girl 10, boy 8 years). I keep busy with lots of volunteering: at my children's school, as a gifted children's advocate, and running my own nonprofit organization that provides grants to build sensory gardens for children with autism and similar disorders. It's an exciting and rewarding endeavor!!!
My home is non-smoking, but we do love animals! We have an ancient cockatiel (20 years!) who named himself Birdie and a rescued Labradoodle named Tofu Loki. My daughter is lobbying to get a fish, rat, bird, or puppy. We'll see! We really believe in giving animals another chance for a happy home; if you're looking to add a pet to your family, please consider adopting a homeless animal from a rescue group, humane society, etc. There are some great animals out there needing loving homes!
Important info: Grapes, raisins, onions, chocolate, and Xylitol sweetener are toxic to DOGS. Be very careful around your pet. My pup spent 3 perilous days under a vet's care due to a raisin-eating episode in April 2010 and again for a day in 2013 after discovering yogurt-covered raisins! THAT DOG!!!!! ;-)
I pretty much stick to sewing, fabric, and needle arts crafting. I'm a huge fan of embroidery and enjoy making things like embroidered flour sack towels. I sew SIMPLE things like reusable tote bags (like Morsbags) and have been a quilter for 11 or 12 years. I started out piecing and quilting by hand but bought a machine to speed things up! I still love to quilt when I can find the time (machine piece & hand quilt). For now, I'm sticking to smaller projects that I actually have a hope of completing! I also have an interest in felting sweet little things.
I truly enjoy learning new things. If you assemble a kit to teach me something new, I will undoubtedly love it and give it a try! I could make an embroidery kit for you if you're interested. :-)
Fabrics: I usually quilt-shop quality fabrics. I prefer small amounts of quality fabric to larger amounts of fabric that doesn't wear as well. These are some examples of my "fabric style". I love bright, modern fabrics, but I also love vintage reproduction fabrics (especially 1930s).
I don't do paper crafts, scrapbooking, crochet, or knitting. It's not that I don't like the idea, just that I'm out of space and time. But I'm VERY interested in seeing what you make in these areas.
Prior to having children, I was an avid reader. Now it's difficult to find time to fit in anything of length. These days you're more likely to find me reading cookbooks, crafty books, and magazines for a quick fix. My favorite magazines are Country Living, Clean Eating, and Hobby Farm Home. I prefer mostly cooking and science-related magazines with an occasional quilting/sewing magazine thrown in for good measure. :-)
I also collect:
As the founder of the Edibles Group, I'm sure you'll believe that I adore receiving international foods. I will love:
Something typical of where you live or locally made
Something edible that you have good memories of. Tell me a little about it!
Sweets~I'm trying to not eat as many of these, but I do enjoy trying new sweets. I haven't given them up but am trying to savor a smaller amount. I especially like fruit-flavored candies, gummy candies, toffees, malted candies, white chocolate, nutty sweets, and marzipan. But I'm NOT picky! ;-)
I especially enjoy citrus flavors (orange, lemon, lime, grapefruit).
We like spicy foods and spices in general.
Things I REALLY LIKE that many people don't: coconut, nuts, peanuts, white chocolate, marzipan, dates, figs, mushrooms, asparagus, tomatoes, spinach, & vegetarian meals.
I cherish receiving tried and true family recipes and keep them in two recipe boxes to fit cards that are 3 x 5 inches/76 x 127 mm or 4 x 6 inches/102 by 152 mm. Bonus if you put your Swap-bot name on it so I remember where the recipe came from. :-)
Local and vintage cookbooks are prized. I read them as if reading a "regular" book. :-)
I'm not so fond of: artificial sweeteners and Stevia/Rebiana (I get headaches; Splenda is OK.). I also don't enjoy fish-flavored snacks (though I eat fish), strong black licorice, tea bags, chewing gum, or red meat (beef, pork, etc. I stopped eating about 20 years ago).
I like chocolate, but it arrives as a melted puddle between April-October. It's HOT where I live!
Reusable cloth shopping bags that I wouldn't find here in Texas: international, non-English, or farmer's market ones especially. I adore handmade bags (shopping-size or for produce) too. Just something different to spice up a trip to the grocery store! ;-)
Locally-made items and handmade things
Anything "cultural" really~I love stuff from other places, in other languages, etc.
Mexican items~i.e. Dia de los Muertos, La Virgen de Guadalupe, Frida Kahlo & Diego Rivera (Hey, I liked them before they were so cool! ;-) I took 150 8th graders on buses to see the Diego Rivera exhibit when it was in Houston, Texas in 1999. Wow!!!)
Anything orange-themed (the fruit, not the color)
Anything songbird-themed--especially swallows and sparrows, love the retro-styled ones like for vintage tattoos. Cardinals remind me of my Grandma, and robins remind me of a dear great-great aunt who made a game of spotting spring's first robin.
Fruit (especially citrus), vanilla, coconut, and nutty scents & tastes (if it's an "edible" scent, I generally like it)
Old black & white photos--my favorites have old cars, dogs, candid children, bicycles, or holiday themes, but I like any old photos, really! I make copies for artwork and never destroy the original.
Dragons (my son's name means "dragon")
Astronomy ~ Both of my children have a star/constellation-related name.
Fabric~cotton fabric, especially vintage or ethnic fabrics, 1930s/40s reproduction prints, Japanese juvenile prints, fabric representing where you live (cotton preferred)
Colors~ I'm very eclectic about color choices and there's very little I don't like. I usually choose bold, vivid colors over pastels, but yet I like the faded, vintage, shabby chic colors and style too. I adore Jadeite green and really love robin's egg blue too. I probably gravitate more towards blues, purples, and greens. I don't dislike yellow, orange, pink, and red, but I use them sparingly.
Vintage embroidery/applique/quilting books, iron on transfers for embroidery, and vintage buttons
Handmade kitchen accessories (dishcloths, towels, etc.)
Recipe cards with your handwritten recipes on them!
Private swaps~Is there something you want from the US or from Texas in particular? Is there an American edible you'd like to try? How about an exchange for something I've hand-embroidered? Send me a note~if my calendar's not too busy and you are an established SB member, I'd be glad to swap with you!
Artificial sweeteners and Stevia often give me bad headaches and dizziness, though Splenda is alright
Smoky, perfumey, or floral scents or tastes (migraines). If someone in your household smokes, please make an effort to send a swap that doesn't smell smoky. Thanks for your consideration.
Metallic jewelry made with metals other than sterling silver, stainless steel, or 14k gold (metal allergies-boo!). Plastic, wood, or fabric/thread/yarn is great, though!
Wool due to allergies--I don't mind something like an ornament made with wool felt. I just get itchy, rashy, & sneezy if I wear anything with wool in it.
Commercial characters (Disney, Winnie the Pooh, Barbie, and other popular cartoony characters)
I have a very eclectic style (world travel, vintage, kitschy), but I just don't care for old-fashioned, country-styled things (apples, geese/ducks in bonnets, roosters, teddy bears, floral 1980s couch-fabric prints...)
Religious propaganda (stickers, music, and other items meant to promote a particular religion), though I do like religious items if they have cultural significance. And I do have an affinity for the religious iconography of the Catholic church. I am respectful of others' religious choices, and I hope for the same in return.
Chocolate doesn't do too well in the Texas heat from about April-October. If you do send something chocolate during this time, please wrap it separately. White "chocolate" withstands warm temperatures better.
Bubble gum/chewing gum, but my kids will thank you for it in the cooler months when it doesn't melt too
Tea bags, unless it's really special--I have my own stash and don't drink it too often. Teabags without individual wrappers seem unsanitary and will never be used.
Supplies for crafts I don't do (such as scrapbooking and other paper crafts, knitting/crochet, polymer clay, cross stitch, etc.)
I eat chicken/turkey/seafood but no red meat (beef, pork, lamb)...but I can't imagine you'd be thinking of sending me that! :-)
Please save destashed items for someone who would appreciate it more (unless it's cool & vintage, you know!). I freshly make or buy each item I send for a swap with my partner in mind. I appreciate the same consideration. :-)
Here's a little information about my children in case the swap pertains to them.
My 10-year-old daughter "L" wants to be a chef or work in the medical or veterinary field and is into:
* Favorite color=light & medium blues, medium/dark purples, and pinks
* Recipes, cook books, and cooking magazines
* Anything "science-y"; she doesn't get grossed out and likes anatomy-related stuff, insects, etc.
* Arts & Crafts projects, painting, clay, coloring, stickers, and anything related to keeping a journal
* Copies of Shakespeare's The Tempest in any language (sentimental)
* MERMAIDS, shells, and anything ocean-related
* Trivia~ She has an obsession with things like the Guinness Book of World Records and remembers quirky facts.
* ANY mail for her, including postcards--she is always interested in where things come from and asks questions to learn more about the different places. A recipe on a postcard would be awesome!
My 8-year-old son "D" is into:
* Anything that flies or has wheels
* Puzzles & Legos
* Science and mechanical things (loves electrical circuits, construction things)
* Sherlock Holmes books in any language or a vintage copy
* The colors blue and yellow
SENDING: I am completely reliable with a good moral compass, and I ALWAYS send out my swaps. I usually send in the last couple of days; I'm always adding to the package and fine tuning up until the very end. I like to include a note in the package to make the swap more personal. If you are expecting something from me and it doesn't arrive, please PM me and we'll get it worked out! Please also note that the post office I use most frequently is an annex and swaps may not be postmarked until the following mail day if the larger post office has already collected the mail from their facility for the day. Rest assured, I sent on the day I marked the swap as sent.
RATING: Please know that I check my mailbox only a couple times/week. DC indicating "delivered" means that it went out on the truck to my mailbox (which is not in front of my house), but I may not have actually received it yet. If I've missed rating you, please never hesitate to send me a PM so I can hop to it! I appreciate those who remember to rate me as well. Regarding hearts: I give them out liberally when I can see that my partner has made an effort to personalize the swap, go above the minimum requirement in some way (not random extras), and/or include a longer note. I always appreciate receiving hearts, as it means to me that you have really enjoyed what I have sent to you. My goal is to always bring a smile to my partner's face. :-)
SENDING ON TIME: I also appreciate swaps that are sent on time. It puts me in an awkward position when I receive swaps that were sent significantly later than marked as sent or more than a couple days past the send date, as I feel that merits a 3. If you PM me before the swap due date to ask for more time, then I'm happy to work with you. Thank you for your thoughtfulness on this matter.
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