My new home away from home…..

Every year for over 50 years in Parke County Indiana has had a county wide craft festival.  People tour the back country roads between towns enjoying the rural country scenery and quaint covered bridges stopping in the towns along the way to visit craft vendors and eat all different kinds of food.

This is my 6th years as a vendor at The Parke County Covered Bridge Festival.  I set up in the small farm town of Rosedale in the small community center for 10 days every October and spend my days talking to people who come to enjoy what we have to offer.

Here are a few photos of my booth…..

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The sweet smell of soap in my house

One of my favorite things to do is to make soap.

Besides it being pretty and it smelling good it is one of the best things I can do for my families skin.  The soaps from the stores are loaded with detergents and things that strip the skin and age it quicker.  I make my soaps the old fashion way with skin loving oils and butters.  I have been using handmade soap for many years now and would never use a detergent bar again.

I use the Hot Process method to make my soap=making soap this way produces a rich creamy rustic looking soap.  After cooking the soap in a crock pot I put it into a wooden loaf mold to harden and when it’s done I am left with a “loaf ” of soap that weighs about 2 1/2 lbs. of finished soap

Next I cut the loaf of soap into 8 bars and put them on a drying racks to cure for a month or so.  After curing they are ready to be used and boxed up for sale.

Above is Manuka Lavender and Victorian Black Rose olive oil soap.  When I make soap I make about 20 lbs because that’s all my racks will hold, usually 8 different scents.  In addition to these I also made Chestnuts and brown sugar,Bamboo Sugarcane,White Chocolate Karibu,Japanese Pear and Ginseng{my fave},Satara sandalwood and Cinnamon Apple Berry.  My curing room smells awesome.

Next week end I will be making soy candles………

I have reopened my Etsy.com shop….

In 2007 I opened my first on-line shop to sell my hand made goodies.  Http://GingerbellsGifts.Etsy.com .  I did really well there for the first year  and 1/2 or so and then things changed and my sales began to drop off so I opened my Http://Gingerbells.Artfire.com shop in 2009 and things went well there considering it was a young start up website.

I like it there and I like being in on the beginning of a new website and watching it grow.  It’s fun to get to know people and I have expanded to 2 shops there.  The last month there have been a lot of changes at Artfire and sales are rather slow so I have been shopping around for another venue to open a new shop to fill in the gaps.

One day I thought “what the heck I’ll pop over to Etsy and see what’s up over there.  Well it looks like there have been a lot of changes to some of the things that disappointed me there before, mainly the terrible search function.  So instead of opening a new shop somewhere else I decided to reopen one of my Etsy shops and give it a go again.  This time I will do things a little differently and we’ll see how it goes.

So here I go again wish me luck……

This weekend will be a fun busy one.  I’m going to be making my fall scented olive oil soaps and soy candles.  Hubby will be golfing all weekend so I won’t need the kitchen for cooking any ways.  Boy will my house smell good.