Moxie & Mel

{January 8, 2007}   Remember Me?

I know, I know. I have been super neglectful of this adorable little blog and all the fun products that go with it for Moxie & Mel. Truth is, I’ve been SWAMPED with things for Natural Magic Soaps and we’ve had a bit of familial drama. Such is life.

However, I haven’t abandoned hope just yet. I’ve been working on my products here and there and collecting more ‘inspiration’ of late. Which brings me to today’s topic.

Gay Gadgets.

Yes, you read that correctly. Gay Gadgets.

You might find yourself wondering exactly what Gay Gadgets are; those of you with less-than-clean imaginations might even be picturing an item or two. I can assure you your wildest dream wouldn’t come up with these babies:

Gay Gadgets Title

Thats right folks. I give you: Shade pulls, lamp pulls and curtain pin backs, the Gay Gadgets included in the 1954 Coat’s & Clark “Kitchen Crochet”, Book No. 304 (originally 10 cents, in case you were wondering).

Here’s a look at the lovely items you too can make!

Gay Gadgets Pin Backs

Gay Gadgets Pulls

Gay Gadgets Tie Backs

If you fancy yourself up to the task of whipping up a Gay Gadget or two, feel free to use the scanned in instructions. I’d love to see any finished products!

Gay Gadgets Instructions Page 1

Gay Gadgets Instructions Page 2


{October 11, 2006}   Moxie and Mel Photo Shoot I

Here are the snapshots from our very first photo shoot.








All in all it was a rather successful day! We’re hard at work on the descriptions and pricing structure, but stay tuned and you’ll find these wonderful items in our Etsy shop soon!

Next photo shoot: Scarves and Hats at Round Island!

{October 9, 2006}   Dear Mel-

I have pictures. Here’s a teaser…

Want to see more? Get me those descriptions!

Love and such

{October 6, 2006}   Dear Mel-

It’s so exciting! I can hardly contain myself!

Whats that you say? You don’t know what I’m talking about? Well here…take a peek!

ThisNext Blog

Still not sure what I mean? READ IT!

Yep! It’s true!

The ‘All That Glitters’ scarf is the source of our very first press for Moxie & Mel! It was picked by Kristopher Dukes, which is very exciting in and of itself! (For those of you who don’t know why, check out this bio!

Yay Moxie & Mel!

~ Moxie, who is bouncing up and down in her chair!

{October 6, 2006}   Dear Mel-

I’m a total slacker. I’ve been completely absent and I am sorry for that.  Things have been oh-so-hectic around here (what’s new, right?) and I just haven’t had the spare time to post. Add to that the fact that there hasn’t been anything really worthy of posting and you get…absentee Moxie.

So… here is a little something I’ve been working on in my ‘spare time’ to entertain you and the 4 other people who are reading this *waves to Georgia, Tanya, Tonya and Michelle*– pictures of some of your delightful creations.

You’ll have to post up some descriptions for them so we can get them on Etsy!

Hope all is well in the frozen north!


{September 25, 2006}   Dear Mel-

Since its been awhile for a crafty post…I now give you: The skinny scarf, a work in progress.

Work In Progress

Yep, I’m having a ball with this *grin*. I’ve mixed a suede yarn with an eyelash fun yarn to create this seascape of fuzzy comfort. It’s a happy little number in soft shades of blues and greens that reminds me of the ocean. I’m in love with it and might end up keeping it for myself, even though I have no idea when I’d wear it in Florida.  Of course, I’m just as tempted to let someone in the Frozen North have a bit of the seaside to wear out and about.

Can’t wait to finish it off and get started on the next one- a mix of feathery yarn in citrus colors over a burgundy suede background!

Hope all is well with you, and I promise to have pictures for you VERY soon! I’m hoping that, in the next week, the Moxie and Mel shop can open!

Love as always~


{September 8, 2006}   Dear Mel-

Oh now I am so jealous I can hardly stand it. That carousel is just gorgeous. Mom wants to know when it’ll be delivered, said she’ll take the pool down to make room for it. Yes…I said take the pool down.  How redneck are we? Inflatable pool. Here’s a picture:

So yes..your trip. Amazing pictures. Love the shot of your Mom and Sis. Totally fell for those quilts! I want a hawaiian shirt quilt! If anyone out there can sew and wants to send me one, I’d like it in bright tropical colors. *grin*

That clock is stunning. I’d love to have it delivered for you for Christmas, but I’m sure it probably costs as much as a small third world country. And now…

Ahhhh. The chocolate. Big fat size of your hand chocolate. I can’t believe you are teasing everyone with those pictures of rows and rows of yummy treats. How wrong is that? I’d like a dozen of the turtles please. Can you have them shipped to my work? Great!

Speaking of work, the new schedule is really running me ragged. I’m working 6pm-2am. Bed about 3am then up at 7am to take Bubba to school. Back home at 9 and study/work until 11, then sleep until 2pm. Pick up Bubba from school at 2:30, then home by 3 and pick up the older two from the bus stop at 3:45. In the shower at 4:15, out the door to work by 5:30. I can’t wait for training to be over and a ‘normal’ shift to kick in! I need eight consecutive hours of sleep! Since I am so sleep deprived, I thought I would give you the cliff notes version of my thoughts today…

Websites I love:

I love love love that they tell you all about the animal your fibers are coming from. How much does THAT rock? Ah if only they had….

My current obsession:

Citrus bc Colonia Knitting / Felting Yarn

A comment on Project Runway:

Yay! I couldn’t be happier! Vincent AND Angela gone. I know, I know…you don’t watch the show. Trust me though, you would be cheering as loudly as I am over it. Angela had a ‘style’ that meant putting rosettes E V E R Y W H E R E and her stuff looked more like a bag lady’s attire than a designer outfit.  Then there was creepy Vincent, who would say things like (in response to the judges poo pooing his design) “Well it got me off”. EWWWWWWWW. Creepy guy. Yuck.

Myspace: Moxie and Mel’s Myspace page is up and running. Check it out here:

Make sure you add us to your friends!

My next project:

Got to – got to! – finish the second sock for Miss Christine and the second panel of the-afghan-that-ate-my-life. Then ..maybe a bigger version of the bag? Maybe I can fit a small headband into the schedule soon too.

Hope you have a good weekend at the lake!


{September 7, 2006}   Dear Moxie–

I had a FABULOUS time in Shipshewana yesterday! I got some fantastic photos also! I think I finally figured my camera out! I say that, but hope that you don’t expect “Moxie quality” pics, but I thought they came out pretty well for a camera that fit into the “Mel budget”! LOL

I was able to visit the huge flea market that they have there on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday during the summer. I’ve never been there during the week before so yesterday was a nice treat. There must have been 1,000 vendors there offering their wares at negotiable prices. Of course there were the booths that had boxes and boxes of “dollar store” stuff, but there were also many true crafters on hand demonstrating their hand created items that you can’t find anywhere else. I was especially drawn to a local artist offering her oil paintings in frames that were built by her husband. Such beautiful artwork and at a very reasonable price. Just FYI, if you ever get the chance to visit Shipshe (dubbed by the locals) flea market, be sure to arrive by 9 o’clock in the morning in order to see everything! They roll up the sidewalks in that town around 5 each evening with the exception of a couple stores and restaurants.

I took 22 photos, but I’ll just post a couple here then if you want to see the rest you can go to my flickr account and see those.

Let’s start with the pictures of the carousel!

I wish I could have gotten a better angle on it, but there was a huge window behind it and the afternoon sun was shining in brightly!

After my mom and sister were done looking at every single thing that was for sale on the 3rd floor of The Davis Mercantile Community, they FINALLY followed a very antsy Mel to the 1st floor to visit Lolly’s!

I couldn’t resist taking these pictures in “heaven”! LOL Oh no! I just realized that I forgot to get a pic of the “boatload of fat quarters”. A quilter’s dream! They have a small rowboat inside the store that is overflowing with quarter yards of a zillion different prints of fabric!

After my sister drug me from the store kicking and screaming, we started down the main street in town where all of the homes built from the late 19th century to the early 20th have been converted into specialty shops.

Our next stop was The Riegsecker Marketplace. They have a huge line of Howard Miller clocks and handcrafted furniture.

By the way, If you can possibly fit this in my stocking, I would love you forever!!! LOL

After more walking and shopping we made our way to “the big red barn” AKA Yoder’s Dutch Country Store.

There are 9 shops inside including Lotions And Potions and Shipshe Log Furniture. There is also a beautiful country scene mural, painted by a local artist, on the wall over the front doors.

By the time we were done browsing there, we were in need of a little pick-me-up, so we found a little shop that is now rivaling Lolly’s for my favorite!

Need I say more??? With all that beautiful chocolate staring me in the face and calling to me, you would be proud to know that I only indulged in ONE piece!

Granted, it was as big as my head, but I only ate ONE piece of chocolate all day! LOL BTW, you can have some of these South Bend Chocolate Company turtles shipped to your door!
Believe it or not, after the chocolate shop, we stopped for some authentic Amish home cooking and then started on our trek back home. It was a wonderful day filled with my very favorite things. Crafts, crafting supplies, the company of my family, and of course CHOCOLATE!

If the clock doesn’t fit into my Christmas stocking, maybe you could just stuff a zillion more days like yesterday into it!

Big Huggzz–


{September 5, 2006}   Dear Mel-

Oh no! I hope you aren’t hurt too badly from your fall. I can’t imagine how I would have reacted; I think chanting “I’m not gonna cry” is pretty close to the mark.

I really enjoyed visiting the winery website; I did have to laugh at the Elderberry wine though- I kept thinking of the quote from Monty Python, “…and your father smells of Elderberries!”.  As for the new “rec room”, I would be afraid to let my husband visit. I don’t think even a crow bar would have gotten him out of there!

I haven’t done anything so generous or impressive as helping a family member prep their house for sale, but we did have a nice weekend. Today Missy came over for a visit and after the fun of tracking down a black racer that was in the boxwood hedge out front…

Black Racer Snake

…she helped me figure out the new sewing machine mom bought. We actually got it to stitch something, which made us feel like we’d won some sort of Olympic Gold. Of course, we still don’t know how to digitize our own graphics, but we’re talking baby steps here. I was so proud of myself I didn’t care that mom’s black tank top now has a poppy flower on it with a stem going sideways from her armpit to a large blossom right where her nipple would be. I’m sure that one glance at the (lack of) instructions for this thing and you’d understand my low expectations and high feeling of success~ the fact that I got it to actually stitch ANYTHING without having a PHD amazes me!

While I was still sailing on the creative high that comes with such accomplishments, we headed out to the Fire Station to take dinner to my sister. We got there just in time to see the afternoon storms blow across the fields. I snapped a picture for you:

Stormy Field

Having assured ourselves she wouldn’t starve, we headed off to spend some quality time at our favorite places.

Jim's Favorite Place

My Happy Place

Jim picked up a few new fishing lures and I sipped coffee and soaked up the crafty goodness. I even spotted a copy of Mason Dixon Knitting!

Mason Dixon Knitting

How sweet is that?! We also spotted quite a few books that screamed out, “Buy me for Mel!” but I held my ground and managed to escape without them. For now. Don’t be surprised to find a box in the mail sometime soon though. LOL

Feeling crafty and inspired now, we all loaded back up in the Soccer Mom Van and headed off for the beach. Why? We were looking for unique sea shells and seed pods to ‘make stuff out of’. Yep. Even Jim was on spotting duty!  I took a TON of pictures while we were there- the storms were sweeping in off the ocean and the sea mist was rising.


Sea Mist

After hanging around long enough to spot an Osprey relaxing in a tree, we set out for home and I got to work.

Now I KNOW you’re thinking, “Work?! On Labor Day?”; and the answer is yes! I set up a new page with graphics showing the basic loom knitting stitches and I created my first pattern- it’s for the adjustable cuff slipper socks I made for Miss Christine.

Now I’m consuming gallons of coffee with cream (no sugar) and trying my darnedest to stay awake until 3am in preparation for the new job. Since I’ll be working 6pm to 2am, I am trying to get used to this new sleeping pattern ahead of time. I sure hope it works!

Well, now you know how my weekend went! What are your plans for the week? Anything crafty in your near future?


{September 3, 2006}   Dear Mel-

What a great day we had today! We headed out early this morning. We took the kids to the park and spent the rest of the day wandering at Florida Oceanographic Center. Here are a couple pictures from the park:
The Boy takes flight

Princess Poses

Bubba On The Bobble Thing

Of course, the best part for me was the total immersion in nature. I love spending time taking pictures of wildlife and flowers, so I was on cloud nine!

Sea Hibiscus

Little Blue Heron


We headed for the hills when the afternoon storms rolled in, running off to Hurricane Grill for some wings and frosty beverages.

Afternoon Thunderstorm

It broke our hearts to see what they’ve done to the place. It looks like a Miami Subs inside, all glossy and touristy. The food wasn’t nearly as good, the service was terrible and they’ve raised the prices (and made the beverage cups smaller!).

We consoled ourselves with a trip to Dunkin Donuts/Baskin Robbins- coffee and ice cream can cure a lot of ills!

I did finish off the first slipper sock for Miss Christine last night/early this morning. I used a new pattern, one I designed myself. It goes directly from the cuff into the heel and uses a thick chain woven through the cuff to make it adjustable. It just happens that Princess has the same size feet as Miss Christine, so she modeled it for me:

New Slipper Sock

I’m pretty happy with how it turned out, but I think for the next set I’ll try for more of a ‘scuff’ style. I think if I eliminate all but the last row or two of the heel, I might be able to achieve it. Anyway, I’ll have them done and ready to go tomorrow! I can’t believe how quickly they knit up. Have I mentioned I love my knitting looms?
I think we’ll probably round out the holiday weekend with a trip to the beach tomorrow. Knowing that I’ll be starting work makes me want to spend as much time with the family as possible. Can’t wait to talk to you and I hope you’re having as wonderful a weekend as we are!


et cetera