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Saturday, May 30, 2009

new TIPS line for Tough Times

Can you calculate a 20% discount in .2 milliseconds? Do you stroll through laundry chores like a walk in the park? Are you a sneaky, clever, ingenious, practical, sensible, wise and creative shopper?

Then, we've got just the thing for you: a weekly tip show called TOUGH TIMES. Your hosts wildwood and skyline pass along household tips, trivia, websites and discuss ways to save money.

What's that? you say *YOU* like saving money, too??! Share your fantastic tips with our new TIPS LINE

and your TOUGH TIMES tip might make it one of our upcoming shows:

"Family Fun for Little or No Money"

"How to Get Thrifty with Thrift Stores"

wildwood and skyline want to hear your TOUGH TIMES tips!

Friday, May 29, 2009

SewHappy Stinkin' Good Giveaway

Are you ready for a another stinkin' good giveaway on BHR?

Cindy at Sewhappydesigns is sewhappy to sponsor the stinkin good giveaway for Friday, May 29th. This lovely bright table mat can do double duty as a candle mat and it is completely reversible! Click on the pic for a close-up of her attention to detail.

Keep open those players open and Good Luck!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

In the Garden - Infuse Your Life!

This week In the Garden we focused on Infusing Your Life with nutritional herbal infusions

What is a nutritional herbal infusion, you ask? Simply, it is a long brewed tea made with more-than-typical dried plant matter. I usually toss a handful of dried herb into a large jar, over which is poured a quart of boiling water, then covered and allowed t steep several hours, often over night. Then, strain a drink.

We explored herbs that are common, free-at-best, inexpensive-at-worst and super nutrient-rich, just loaded with vitamins and minerals that support and sustain us in many ways. We discussed nettle leaf (Urtica dioica), alfalfa leaf (Medicago sativa), oatstraw (Avena sativa), red clover blossoms (Trifolium pretense) and red raspberry leaf (Rubus ideaus) and we touched on the roasted brew you see pictured here, dandelion leaf (Taraxicum officinalis).

Why Herbal Infusions you ask? Well, as far as I'm concerned, because they are so simple, so abundant, so cost effective and so usable by our bodies. Ingesting added nutrients in this way decreases your perceived dependency on manufactured nutritional supplements and can save you a boat-load of money. Using common herbs in this way delivers nutritional components, especially minerals, in ways that are actually usable/absorbable by the body. Not only that, but drinking nutritional herbal infusions in this way offers you direct control of the quality of your nutritional supplementation - in the form of fresh, organic plant matter, grown with love, even! And, as I often mention, infusing your life in this way offers yet another way to support your local community and economy by buying herbs from a small, independent local growers or suppliers.

All that aside, it is a fun and healthy way to develop and nurture an intimate relationship with, and understanding of the simple foods that benefit us!

To learn more about the nutritional information that I shared during our show, please email me ( for my simple herb "cheat-sheet" and check out these few starter resources:
  • The Food Doctor - Healing Foods for Mind and Body by Vicki Edgson and Ian Marber ISBN 1-85585-682-4
  • Healing Foods by Miriam Polunin ISBN 0-7894-7247-7
  • Healing Wise by Susun S. Weed ISBN 0-9614620-2-7
Happy reading and sipping! Be sure to join us again next Thursday at 11:30 AM, ET In the Garden when we'll be exploring some common Colonial American (Elizabethan) kitchen plants.

Thanks and be well be Nature!

~ rose
Host of In the Garden

Are You Selling on Artfire Yet?

Do you know about the Free Ride program at Artfire?

With the ArtFire Free Ride program for a limited time, you can earn an upgraded Verified account with full functionality and the ability to list unlimited items in your Fusion Studio absolutely free for life! Just refer 12 of your friends and when they join as a Verified member you, PLUS a friend of your choice receive a Free Ride!

Well I would like to get a free ride so........the first 12 that sign up for a verified studio with the link below I will use a random number generator and give one of you a free ride. Hey they said I could pick somebody so how about somebody that helped me out.

Register on


Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Outside the Frame, May 27 show recap

On Wednesday’s Outside the Frame show, we explored the remaining eight tools that along with the Mailing List (covered in episode 3) and Studio Press Kit (covered in episode 4) comprise the 10 Essential Marketing Tools you need to promote your work and yourself.

The most basic of these essential marketing tools is the business card. This is the ultimate networking tool. Take a second and look at your business card as if you are seeing it for the first time and through someone else’s eyes. Does your card capture your attention? Does the contact information jump off the card? Remember that you only have one chance to make a good first impression and if your card doesn’t measure up, you should consider redesigning it to maximize its effectiveness.

The second essential marketing tool is the business stationery. This includes envelopes, invoices, letterhead, title cards for artwork, labels, etc. Your business stationery is your advance team – promoting you and your work as it makes its way around from one person’s hands to the next between you and its final destination. Once at that final destination, your identity and message needs to grab the attention of the recipient and induce them to choose you over your competition.

The third essential marketing tool is your promotional material in the form of post cards, flyers, and brochures. Most of these promotional elements were discussed in prior episodes. The one promotional element not covered previously is the Leave-Behind.
The leave-behind is a gift left with a customer or prospect as a reminder of the company or its product. A leave-behind that provides information about the product or services will be more effective than a product that bears only the company name. Top five most used leave-behinds are: #5 letter opener, #4 mini calendar, #3 notepad, #2 magnet card, and #1 the pen.

The fourth essential marketing tool is your portfolio that should contain between 10 to 12 and certainly no more than twenty quality images of your work. Your portfolio should be organized in such a way that the entire collection is cohesive – not just a hodge-podge of pieces tossed together. The portfolio can be hard copy or digital.

The fifth essential marketing tool is the show catalog. For every exhibition you should have some sore of catalog created, whether prepared by you the artist or the gallery. For the festival artist, a simple 5 by 7 inch catalog that features pictures of your works, prices, order form and contact information enables people to grab a catalog and take it home with them which is especially convenient where portability is a must. In the hands of your potential customer, the catalog becomes a member of your advance team where it can be passed from one person to the next.

The sixth essential marketing tool is the website that can be used as an extension of your physical gallery or as your physical gallery. After a number of years online, I’ve found that utilizing a combination of collective sites in conjunction with my own personal website is most effective. There are a number of books and tools available to help you build your site … just do a Google search. However, I cannot stress enough the importance of understanding Search Engines, Meta Tags and Descriptions as these drive traffic to your site and help people find your work on collective sites. A good free resource to learn about Search Engine Optimization can be found at Market Leap just click on the University link at the top of the page.

The seventh essential marketing tool impacts all the other tools and that is the proper photographing of your work. Photographing your works is also important as a means of documentation required for copyright registration to deter theft of your work. Poorly photographed art diminishes the work and reflects badly upon the artist. Besides if the client cannot see the work, how can they be expected to buy your art? For information on how to photograph 2-D, 3-D and smaller works utilizing a copy stand; see my website to download a diagram and instructions.

The eighth and final essential marketing tool is the all-important current price list. Anytime a product is offered for sale, there has to be a listed price for that product. However, as this process is so frustrating for artists many neglect this critical step toward selling their works. Artists often ask, should I price my work low so it sells and if I do will it undervalue my art? For the answer to this question be sure to come back next week as the show will be devoted entirely to pricing strategies.

Don’t forget to send an email to me at with a list of the tips of the day from episodes 1 through 5 to be eligible to win the Outside the Frame Listener Appreciation Drawing. See my Paint and Pen Blog for details.

New Advertising is Ready to Go

The rotating banners are on 49 pages of BHR 'Live" (and will increase as we add show, musician, pod pages), the blog, chat room, and the sponsor link page. You can purchase your spot and get all the information by clicking here.

Once the 48 spots are filled we will be creating a waiting list.

Thank you for your continued support of BHR.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

A Balance In Advertising

First off I want to thank the many people who have bought audio and showcase ads on BHR. It has been with your help that we have been able to keep 'exposing indie artist to the world'. But now we feel a change is needed.

One of our main goals when we started BHR was to keep the advertising within reach of the artisans. With the CPM based model for audio/banner ads the cost is going to be (if we were strict) 50 plus dollars a week at the current rate. We have been working behind the scenes to accomplish 2 goals:

Setup a flat rate advertising program that the artisans can afford.

Increase our listener base 10 fold over the next 3 months.

Huck and I have been working feverishly the past few weeks with site design, streaming server setup, and all that other geek stuff that makes BHR work and sound good. You may have noticed some of the changes in programing. We actually have the hosts prerecord their shows and play them like a song. The audio quality is a lot better and the host are free to interact with the guests in chat. BHR is switching streaming servers in about 10 days for several reasons. With this new company we will be listed on shoutcast, aol, windows media guide, itunes, and more. Listeners will have the option to open the BHR player or one of 1000's different one available that they personally use. This opens us up to 1000's of more listeners but we do not have control if a banner ads plays in it or not. With the test server we have been using I've seen a dramatic increase already. The second most important reason is the fact that I have space on their server to upload media. This means if I lose electric, Internet, or Huck spills more coffee on my computer the station will never be down. It will automatically kick in a stream from there if they detect BHR is not streaming.

Now on to the meat and potatoes. The new BHR audio ad.

If you notice on top of the blog there are 4 150 x 150 banners in rotation. These will be on all the Blockhead Radio 'Live" pages, chat room, blog, sponsor links page, any other place I can find to stick it, and eventually the BHR Player. There are 14 banners in rotation on each one. We will be offering 12 spots on each one for advertising. The other 2 are being held for cross promotions and giveaways. Each banner rotates on a 5, 6, 7, or 8 second rotation. This keeps it in motion and attention getting. With the banner ad spot comes a one liner that is read on air. Larry can back me up on how effective this is. Each banner will have an ad/plug played in rotation i.e. "Take a look at and the other great sponsor of BHR by visiting" This makes a very good impact and isn't tuned out as a commercial. 3 to 4 plugs will be played in rotation every hour with different hosts doing voice overs. This makes BHR "commercial" free which will help in attracting new listeners.

Sound good so far? Now for the cost. We are throwing the CPM out the window. (fellow casters don't throw anything too hard at me) It will be a flat rate of $21.00 per month. This is actually a little less expensive than just the showcase spots, and yes this is the last week of them. It will be setup as a subscription through Paypal and we are hoping to attract long term advertisers. Once the 48 spots are filled we will create a waiting list. I plan to have the banner installed on all the pages in the next 2 days and at that time we will open it up for advertisers. We will announce in on the air, plurk, twitter, and here on the blog.

If you have any questions please email me at

Rod and Huck

This Week's Featured Artisan

Chelsea Lynn Designs

When I knew I was going to feature Hot Buttered Rum this week the only artisan I knew I could feature was my sing a long buddy Larry. You have heard his voice on BHR many times. He is the conductor of the Crazy Train segments you hear. I have only know Larry for a short time but I will say it has been my honor a privilage to have met him. Larry is a disabled diabetic who loves painting, making digital collage sheets, scrollsaw patterns, jewelry and lots more. His wife and 8 year old son often help him out.

You can find Larry at his Artfire shop, on Plurk, Facebook, and his blog. Stop by and say hi to this mild mannered NC country boy. You will feel like and old friend of his in no time.

This Week's Featured Musician

Hot Buttered Rum

Hot Buttered Rum, one of the hardest-working and fastest-rising acts in acoustic rock, began in the San Francisco Bay Area with a lineup full of uniquely talented singer-songwriter/instrumentalists setting out to create a new Northern California sound. The Bay Area claims credit for producing dozens of bands, from Jefferson Airplane, the Grateful Dead, and Old and In the Way, to the Mother Hips, Green Day, Metallica, and beyond. From this fertile ground sprang Hot Buttered Rums own infectious blend of American styles folk, rock, jazz, and newgrass all informed by the landscape of their home.

Shunning stagnation in any form, Hot Buttered Rum diligently continues to hone their sound through 150+ live performances a year, with each show boasting a unique setlist and feel. Often referred to as a rock band with bluegrass instruments, the band recently has blended drums and electric instruments into their otherwise acoustic folk-rock live performances. This evolution will lead Hot Buttered Rum into the studio in January with producer Tim Bluhm of the Mother Hips to further refine their sound.

Like so many great Bay Area bands before them, Hot Buttered Rum makes no separation between their music and their activism. They unapologetically undergird their shows with songs about social equality, environmental responsibility, and political change, and then back it up by touring in a biofueled bus and donating their time to service work at schools, Native American reservations, and political fundraisers. Believing that the 2008 presidential election was the most important one in a generation, Hot Buttered Rum lent their support to Democratic candidates by appearing at political events like the September 16, 2008, Oakland Rocks for Change fundraiser, and, in an attempt to energize like-minded citizens to enact meaningful change, they offered free downloads of their songs ?Reckless Tex? and ?Guns or Butter? from their website during the election season.

Embracing an out-on-the-range sound for the sake of parody, guitarist Nat Keefe wrote Reckless Tex as a protest piece in advance of the 2004 presidential election, employing metaphor to launch a vitriolic attack on the obvious though never named subject of the song: President George W. Bush. The lyrics persuade the listener to agree with the songs refrain that This reckless cowboy swagger's not becoming of a man. Guns or Butter takes a century-old economic concept about military versus domestic spending and makes it swing and swing hard. Should we teach our kids to read, or invade Timbuktu? asks multi-instrumentalist Erik Yates, driving home the idea that while smart-bombs are falling on Iraq, our countrys schools are falling behind.

Hot Buttered Rums progressiveness can only be described as organic. The bands vibrant egalitarian structure, in which all members contribute equally, results in an energetic exchange and magnetic chemistry seen most clearly in the band?s transfixing live performances. These same democratic underpinnings characterize Hot Buttered Rum?s virtual presence and the band?s relationship with its multigenerational, nationwide fanbase. Multi-night appearances often include organized community get-togethers and kids sets in nearby parks, creating a productive meeting space for band members and fans to exchange ideas and support. Hot Buttered Rum encourages audience photography and audio recording of their shows, but the band also turns the cameras on their fans, taking View from the Stage photos of the audience and posting them on the website for all to see. The website itself is a virtual meeting space where the band and fans can stay in touch. Band members use the content-rich site to share blog entries from the road; to host a fan discussion forum; to simulcast their shows to internet listeners (while providing a chat room so internet listeners can enjoy each other?s company during the show); to showcase in a Green section the band's eco-friendly tour bus and enviro-/socio-/political resume; and to provide sundry other regularly rotating media that help ensure a participatory, creative experience for all involved.

Check out for more information about the rising star that is Hot Buttered Rum.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Pieceful Afternoon: Donation quilt - Open Heart Surgery fundraiser

Pieceful Afternoon: Donation quilt - Open Heart Surgery fundraiser

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Update on the BHR Directory

We are currently on page 11 of the Artisan Directory!

Page 12 will be an article

There are spots open and You can reserve your spot, and send in information any time before July 1st

Spots are sold on a first come first serve basis.

You can reserve your spot by visiting You do not need an artfire account to purchase

We Also have spots available for the Suppliers section !!

Slotted to be available August 1st in Free Download Version and also a Hard copy verision will be available too!

Friday, May 22, 2009

Eating from the Earth - In the Garden

This week's show honored the burgeoning spring and the coming of summer. It mirrored an article that is in the current release of The Door Opener magazine. It was all about this amazing "growing season" that I'm experiencing in my little corner of the world. It was all about Eating from the Earth.

In essence, I shared some personal thoughts, a few favored green foods, both cultivated and wild, and invited you, kind listener, to leverage your locally grown food options. I encouraged you to visit your local Farmers’ Markets to pick up some old favorites and to try some new delicacies that you simply can’t find in any supermarket. I asked you to buy a share in a local CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) and delight in the weekly bounty that it offers. And, of course, I invited you to grow and nurture something yourself, be it in a pot on your windowsill or a patch of land, to enjoy with your loved ones as you share your experiences eating from the earth together at your dining table. 

Be sure to join us on air and in the chat room next Thursday In the Garden for Infuse Your Life at 11:30 AM, eastern when we will explore some basics of nutrition and how simply you can Infuse Your Life - with Nutritional Herbal Infusions.

See you then!

Host of In the Garden

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Outside the Frame, Wednesday 20 Show Recap

On Wednesday’s Outside the Frame show, deconstructed the Studio Press Kit, your most valuable package and learned how to write effective Promotional Press Releases, the centerpiece of the package, to get your name and work in print.

The Studio Press Kit is an extremely important package that is necessary when you wish to launch a thorough media campaign. The press kit is most often presented within a 2-pocket folder and contains information about you, your business and the work that you do. It is extremely effective if all your Press Kit materials (business card, letterhead, brochure, postcards, and folder) have a unified look. This can be achieved by utilizing a printing service such as that offers various business documents in matching designs.

Your package should contain – a tip or fact sheet that provides a little history and information about your business and the services you provide (preferably on your letterhead) or in the form of a brochure. Your biography, resume, list of exhibitions and collectors, as well as, captioned photos of artist, works, and shop or gallery along with a bullet-item list of special activities or special offers you have planned. You should also include copies of any prior press coverage in the form of clippings. Be sure to staple or affix your business card to the inside of the inner pocket. At the heart of your Studio Press Kit or package is the Promotional Press Release.

Public relations opportunities used to be referred to as “free advertising” but by today’s terminology are known as “publicity” and defined as publicized events that you can participate in (or initiate) to bring attention to you and your work. This type of publicity is obtained through issuing a simple document called a “news release” or “promotional press release”. Whether or not your release gets published or tossed into the trash is dependent upon whether or not the release was written in the correct format. The news media receives thousands of press releases each day, of which only a few will be printed. A common way for editors to filter out the good ones is by immediately throwing away those that are typed incorrectly, are illegible, or contain obvious errors.

In journalism, there is a simple method of writing which tends to dominate stories found in newspapers – this is called the “inverted pyramid”. The purpose of this is to provide the editor with as much of the following in the first paragraph of the story: who, what, where, when, how and/or why. This way, when placing the story in the paper, the editor can simply chop off the bottom if space restrictions dictate – without losing the essence of the story. When writing a press release, remember:
1. List important facts – answering who, what, where, when, how and/or why.

2. Try to squeeze that information into the first two paragraphs.

3. Keep the paragraphs short and concise – not more than 6 or 7 lines. Avoid flowery language.

4. Keep the information relevant to the story and the story pertinent to the reader.

The following rules set forth are the correct format in which press releases should be submitted:
1.) Use standard 8 ½ by 11inch standard copy paper or better still, your letterhead. Your release should be written on one side only … and while the usual advice is for double spaced releases, I have sent out many that were single-spaced and they were printed with no complaints. While you can get by with not having a release double-spaced, you should strictly adhere to rules regarding length. Your release should be no longer than one page (or 300-500words).

2.) Your name, business, address and phone number should be at the top of the release …include both work and home numbers of the primary contact as the editor may have questions or assign a reporter to write a feature story.

3.) Be sure to include a release date that indicates the story is either for “Immediate Release” or is to be held until the posted publication date.

4.) Photographs included with the release should be at least 3 by 5 inches and on larger than 4 by 6 inches. Polaroids do not scan well so don’t use them. All photos must be captioned on the back and listed/captioned on the release. The works within the photo should be titled, as well as, all persons within the photo should be identified. If proper identification is not possible, such as a photograph of you at a show or festival with other people milling about – you can caption the photo: “The artist, DeDe Sorensen, at the show opening with an unidentified attendee”. Also on the back of each photo, you should include a return address label so that the photos can be returned to you or be replaced in your press kit.

5.) In journalism, you need to put “slug lines” which are three pound signs (tic-tac-toe grid) in a row centered on the line after your last sentence to indicate the end of the page. The headline that you write will likely be changed by the copy editors to account for the given space allotment, however, do include a headline as it will be used as reference by you and the editor should questions arise.

6.) One of the most important things to remember is Deadlines. Everything in new revolves around the deadlines. If the deadline is 4 PM on Thursday and the release arrives at later … it will have to wait until the next edition and by then, your event may have already passed.

7.) If you’ve followed all the rules and have given it your best shot to get your release delivered to the right editor on time, yet your story doesn’t get run; don’t take it personally or be offended. Sometimes your story will get pushed aside because there is just too much news to report. Keep this in mind when you schedule events so that they are not competing with big, community-wide events like festivals or fairs. If your event must compete, then a small display ad would be more cost effective in this instance.

By following the Associated Press (AP) Style Guidelines, you will endear yourself to the news editors who have to reformat releases that don’t adhere to AP Style. You can find posted on my website a Press Release Information Sheet that will help you to write your press releases as well as a sample press releases.

Don’t forget the Outside the Frame Listener Appreciation Drawing at the end of the month where you have the opportunity to win an 11”h x 14” w matted print of my work Sunset: Oregon Coast. An image of this matted print is posted on my blog along with full details. This month’s drawing will be on May 31with a new print going up on June 1. Be sure to tune in next Wednesday to Blockhead Radio for Outside the Frame to learn the remaining eight tools that along with the Mailing List (episode 3) and Studio Press Kit (episode 4) comprise the 10 Essential Marketing Tools you need to promote your work and yourself.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

A BeWitching Find

Pamper yourself or even someone you adore with any one of the cute creations from Pampered Papier! This shop has everything you could imagine in the way of paper goods... from adorable little post it note sets to those ever useful gift tag sets.

You can also pick up some fabulous creations to use as promotional items for your shop (matchbook notepads in an assortment of patterns and mini note cards too)! The hardest part will be deciding!

You can also find Crystal, aka Pampered Papier, at her blog. See what she's been up to and get in on one of her glorious giveaways.
There is another one coming up in June.

How cute are the "Hedgehogs and Woodland Friends Mini Notes"?? This is just a small glimpse at some of the handmade paper goodies to be found in this awesome shop! The rest are just a click away...

Sunday, May 17, 2009

A BeWitching Find

Look at these cute creations just screaming out to be loved! Sudey Babes is a shop just brimming with adorable handmade designer teddy bears.

These teddies are truly incredible works of collectible art... meaning they are not intended for small children.

Hand stitched and fully jointed using either mohair, alpaca or luxury faux furs one can only imagine the time and love put into every bear. Replete with beautiful glass eyes and cute embroidered noses that add to the whimsy of every teddy bear.

No two bears are every precisely alike, which means that each one is just brimming with personality and attitude.

Visit Sudey Babes to admire the many unique teddy bears that are looking for a new forever home. Remember, these bears are all lovingly handcrafted and looking for a forever home! Its totally appropriate to "ooh" and "ahh" over the warm and fuzzies you're sure to feel with a glimpse into this shop!

Blockhead Radio Charity Box

The Blockhead Radio 1st Charity Box is now available for purchasing Come see at the BHR website!

Blockhead Radio Artisan Directory

For the August 1st publication. There will be a Artisan Section (front of Magazine) and Supplies (middle of magazine) and coupons in the back. Articles will be included throughout the magazine. Coupons are limited to 50 words and you may include up to 2 coupons with your bought ad. No designing needed on your end. You simply send me your written information.

You may also buy a 1/2 page and full page spot, but these spots are limited, and must email me for informationRead more hereOr visit The Radio Website and click on advertisingAds are accepted on first come basis.BHR reserves the right to refuse any advertisement. The Supply Section is limited to Suppliers of the Artisan and Crafters Suppliers The Magazine will be available for FREE download and there will also be a hard copy version available.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Outside the Frame, May 13 Show Recap

How to capture repeat business and gain new customers through the use of a Mailing List was the topic of Wednesday’s program. What is a mailing list and why do I need one? Very simply, a mailing list is a list of contacts -- people and/or businesses that advertising matter or information is to be mailed. Mailing lists are fluid … meaning they change with us as our needs and wants change. Because our needs and wants shape our daily lives and ultimately affect our lists, our mailing lists are individual. Since mailing lists are individual; there is no one-size, fits all list.

Your mailing list will evolve with your career and should reflect three things:
1. Past professional activity (shows you’ve had, sales you’ve made, etc.)
2. Your current professional abilities (what you can achieve with the skills and materials you have now)
3. Your future professional aspirations (where you want your career to go in the future; new markets or customers you want to approach)

Although our professional needs and wants are individual, our mailing lists will fall into primarily four categories: publicity lists, marketing lists, network lists, and social lists. Publicity Lists contain media contacts for newspapers, television, radio stations and trade magazines along with public relations opportunities in your community. Marketing lists contain information for the various markets or venues to show and/or sell your work. Network lists contain peer contacts, b2b professional contacts and service organizations. Social lists contain the names of your social contacts.

When I worked as a publicist for the gallery and later as Public Relations/Marketing Director for the International arts co-op, I utilized the two most economical forms of advertising quite successfully – the direct mail campaign and the promotional press release. Neither of which could have been carried out without my mailing list. As with any business in general, the most important and highly valuable form of advertising is through satisfied customers. This holds true for direct mail as well – the industry standard for customer response rate for mailing lists is 3%. This means that if you mail out an offer to 1000 contacts, you can expect only 30 replies and not all replies will be sales. On the other hand, follow-up promotions mailed to customers who have already made a purchase from you yield a typical response rate of 10 to 15%.

Prior clients are the highest quality seeds for building your marketing mailing list. The next best seed is the referred client followed by the self-cultivated prospect. The lowest quality seed is the prospect you know nothing about or the rental name that comes from a list broker. When building your list, its important to remember that quality is always favorable to quantity. It is far better to have one name that will lead to a show or sale rather than 100 names that lead to nothing. Don’t waste your time and money chasing down “dead-end leads”.

Begin building your marketing list by listing contacts from all previous professional activity such as past sales, galleries you’ve exhibited in or have been represented by, etc. Scout “new markets” based on your future aspirations keeping in mind your present professional capabilities (how much and what types of new business can you handle) – add to your list those contacts that are appropriate. Your list will evolve as new venues become past professional activities and as venues that don’t pan out are removed from your list. Start you publicity list by gaining access to the media and public relations opportunities in your immediate area. Your phone book and local newsstand will be an excellent resource. A wonderful resource for national and international press contacts is the American Journalists Review (AJR).

There are a variety of options for storing your mailing lists such as spreadsheets (Excel, Lotus, Quattro Pro) or database (Paradox, Access, FileMaker Pro, dBASE, FoxPro, Approach or Oracle) programs. The type of program you use is based largely upon your personal preferences. If you are just starting out with databases, I recommend Working Artist Software or Arts & Craft Business Organizer

What to send: Send a press release to your publicity list about events of interest to the public such as gallery exhibitions and other such newsworthy events. Keep in mind distance and interest when submitting press releases as editors won’t print items that aren’t relevant to their readers. For current clients, network and social lists I utilize a newsletter type mailing. For new prospects, I use a brochure and/or postcard. Your mailing list isn’t confined to traditional mail. You can send out email campaigns instead of or in addition to your traditional mailings. To avoid being identified as “spam” by your ISP, utilize an email marketing service to send out your emails. Fine Art America and VistaPrint offer these types of services, or you can find others through Google. Maximizing direct mail success depends upon three things: the list you use, the offers you make and the quality of the marketing materials you send.

Don’t miss the next episode of Outside the Frame to learn the basics for writing an effective Promotional Press Release that gets your name and work in print!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

A BeWitching Find

One glance into the shop Mona Designs and it becomes evident this lady has a passion for creating beautiful jewelry. She creates her pieces using a variety of mediums and techniques: everything from weaving, wire wrapping, soldering, and fusing glass.

With that many techniques and a penchant for trying new things, one never knows what kind of beautiful creations to expect. For sixteen years she has "been enchanted by color, texture, light, and mechanical composition". One cannot help but linger a while in a shop that contains so many wearable pieces of art.

To see even more beautiful creations you can meander by her Etsy shop. Be prepared to stay awhile though to marvel at her skill and the variety that she she creates.

Of course you can also find out more about what Mona is up to at her blog, including sneak peeks into upcoming tutorials concerning various techniques.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Stinkin' Good Giveaway sponsored by CharSpirit


Kitty Kats Organizer Bucket Cover that goes on any 2 qt paint bucket (the one shown in picture) made with pre-washed novelty fabrics for the pockets & recycled fabric for bucket insert. I crocheted the trim and hand sewn on edges and between pockets.

Use it for organizing your.....
arts & crafts(paintbrushes, paints, yarn & needles),
body & bath stuff (brushes, combs, blow dryer, make-up),office (scissors, pens, paper, envelopes).

Visit CharSpirt on Artfire and take a look at this listing.

Thanks Char for sponsoring this Stinkin' Good Giveaway.

Garden & Weed Walk: The Sequel

During this week's episode of In the Garden we continued the garden and weed walk around my little acre that we started last week. Even with two weeks, we've only skimmed the surface!

I've done what I - and many herbalists - call "weed walks" along city sidewalks, and even in such seemingly inhospitable environments it is truly amazing just how much you find growing. So it's no surprise that on my lush little acre we have so much growing that we wouldn't be able to touch on all of it in a lifetime of shows! And that's just the plant I can recognize! But we did visit the hosta (which I'm researching further - seeking real-life experience from others) and forget-me-not, periwinkle and lungwort (pictured), buttercup and forsythia, maple and horse chestnut, and more! You can take a peek at many of these plants at our In the Garden Flickr, where you are also welcome to join us and post your own garden photos and other garden-inspired arts and crafts.

I will be taking a week away from the show next week, but will return LIVE on Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 11:30 AM, eastern to talk about "Eating From the Earth." I hope that you will join us then ... and everyday on Blockhead Radio!

Be well by Nature!

Host of In the Garden

How thrifty are you?

Is your nickname Frugal MacGoogle? Can you save a buck like nobody's business? Are you thrifty as a French peasant?

Tough Times wants to know! Join wildwood and skyline this week as we pass along household tips and test our thriftiness. We'll be taking an online exam to see how we score, and we'll invite our listeners in chat to play along.

Want to cram for the exam?

s t r a t e g i z e :

  • the reduction of waste
  • curbing costly habits
  • suppressing instant gratification by means of fiscal self-restraint
  • seeking efficiency
  • avoiding traps
  • defying expensive social norms
  • embracing free (as in gratis) options
  • using barter
  • staying well-informed about local circumstances
  • market and product/service realities

Thursday, May 7, 2009

LiberTEAS on Chocolate Covered Bacon!

We had another wonderful show tonight. Anne from LiberTEAS was with us, and shared a great deal of information with us about tea. She talked about what I discovered was her most popular question, “How to brew tea properly?” Every tea that is brewed is has a different temperature and time, to get the optimum flavor. Anne explained how with some teas, such as green tea, you must use a lower temperature in order not to scorch the tea. Using a temperature that is too hot for the tea will cause it to have the bitterness that some people do not like. With the green tea the best water temperature is NOT boiling, but instead between 160-180 F and is best to be brewed for only 2-3 minutes in the water, hotter water will burn the Green Tea and a longer time may make the tea more astringent than you may like.

We also discovered some great blends that she has. Chocolate Rose Romance is the one that got LiberTEAS started and is still her favorite to this day. Some of the special blends that she makes are made with the help of an Herbologist to help combat allergy symptoms. The Alergi-Teas, as they are called, look amazing in the pictures, and I suggest you try one! All of Anne teas are specially blended to meet her high standards and come in a tin or, if you already have the tin, you can buy the refill bags. They also come with individual brewing instructions for each tea, to ensure that you get the best flavor each time.

You can visit LiberTEAS at any of her stores on Artfire, MadeItMyslef or 1000Markets. Anne also maintains a Tea blog and a blog for her other crafts, and you can visit her art shop on Etsy if you like. I would like to thank Anne for a great show, we will definitely need to have her back again, as we barely broke the surface of everything she does! Next Thursday on Chocolate Covered Bacon-The best in independent food finds, at 6PM EST, we have Emmy’s Organics with some wonderful sweets to satisfy your cravings. They are organic and gluten free!

--James ~ ClosetCreature of Birdy's Knits, your Host for Chocolate Covered Bacon-The best in independent food finds

A Stinkin' Good Giveaway

Are you ready for a another stinkin' good giveaway on BHR?

Cindy at Sewhappydesigns is sewhappy to sponsor the stinkin good giveaway for Monday, May 11th. This lovely bright table mat can do double duty as a candle mat and it is completely reversible! Click on the pic for a close-up of her attention to detail.

Keep open those players open and Good Luck!

New Discoveries

Tonight's shops were Enchanted Dandelions, Two Sea Side Babes, and Haffina Creations.

April from Enchanted Dandelions makes the most adorable Owie Bags, Oopsie Daisies, and Sensory Sacks!

Jessi from Two Sea Side Babes makes the most beautiful Buckle Beanies! They range in size from Newborns to adults! She also makes a whole family of Amigurumis!

And lastly but not leastly Haffina Creations. This Australian shop ships their gorgeous Polymer Clay Beads, Knits, Cross Stitch, Macrame', Chainmaille, and Sead Beaded Cabochon Pendants, earrings, necklaces, bracelets, key chains, etc. world wide!!

Are You the Biggest Stalker?

Well, you need to show the world! How are you the biggest stalker? The competition is fierce but it's early in the month!! What will you do to show your stalking abilities?

The Current Stalker is Skyline Candle Company!

Be sure to check out the bonus points also, fabulous stalking by LoveToStamp, Aunti Franni, StitchNLove, Pigatopia and SweetDBows.

How can you be the Biggest Stalker?

Follow Our Blog
Follow Chris Huff's Blog
Follow Patti on Twitter
Friend us on Plurk
Add the Player to Your Blog
Share Blockhead Radio business cards (email to learn which ones to use and for good deals)
Share BHR's URL on your shops, blogs, twitters, plurks, etc.
Hang a BHR sign at craft shows, parties, etc.
Join the BHR Clubhouse on
Follow Blockhead Rod, Witchy, Huck and all BHR staff on Twitter
Create something BHR related
Join the Artfire Stalkers Guild
Make a YouTube video proclaiming your love for BHR.
Make a photo slideshow/movie (MovieMaker on Windows is helpful for this) about BHR (USE PODCAST SAFE MUSIC ONLY PLEASE!)
Tattoo BHR on your forehead...oh wait..maybe TEMPORARILY Tattoo BHR on your body?

The list is of all you can just use YOUR creative (and sometimes frightening) brain to come up with even more possibilities! Don't for one second ever think there is a guaranteed winner early on in NEVER know who is stalking quietly. We ARE watching...(in the bushes with night vision goggles sometimes...I see you James....)

The point is, use your lovely, creative brain and have at it! Share your stalking here!

Happy Stalking!

Mom's Cafe Gets Photographic!

Last nights edition of Mom's Cafe was chocked full of photographic goodness! We had two awesome guests, ChainMaille Lady and Diana from Night Maiden. Both ladies gave some fantastic advice on taking great photos for the items you list and sell online!

So, the good news is both of our guests agreed that you don't have to have a fancy schmancy camera to take great pictures! Some very good advice we received was to "learn your camera". This may seem like "duh" but honestly, do you know what all those buttons and gizmos on your camera really do? I know that I don't! After last nights show, I am pulling out my manual today to see what else I can do with my Camera!

Some very good tips we got we're about backgrounds: If you have an item that is light in color, try a darker background and vice versa for dark colored items. Remember, don't let your background be busier than your item, this is very important because you never want to draw attention away from your items.

Don't forget when taking photos of smaller items like jewelry, to use your macro setting on your camera, this will allow you to get the close up shots you need without blurring or fuzzy pics. Both of our guests suggested using natural outdoor light for great shots or a light box. ChainMaille Lady also suggested that the Light Box she had made was better than the one she had bought!

After you get your camera set up, lets think about how you would like to display your items. You can't just leave it laying on a table. This is your hard work! The only way anyone will truly appreciate it, is if you photograph it in a positive light. We must take as much care in our photography as we took in creating our items! Suggestions for props are models, flowers, store bought props. For example, some great props are found in nature! Use flowers, leaves, stones, trees, grass, anything that is naturally beautiful to your advantage! So long as it doesn't take away from the beauty of your item you can use it!

Also, think of things that go along with your items. If you have a sewn item, you can use spools of thread or scissors as props. Soap, can use rubber duckies and bath tubs. There are always more creative ways to take your photographs to attract the attention of potential buyers!

The last and most important advice we received was : Don't give up! Keep on until you get it right! Take lots and lots of pictures of items to get that perfect shot! Fill up ALL the slots in your listings! Show all the angles and maybe a different background too.

All in all, photography of your items will not come to you overnight. This is something that will be perfected with time. Just like it took you a while to learn your craft, photography is the same way!

We enjoyed having our guests on last night and learned so much! Don't forget to catch Mom's Cafe on Blockhead Radio Wednesday nights at 9pm Eastern with Rockerchic and Mama's Little Monkeys! We promise next weeks show will have some more stinkin' awesome tips for your online handmade shops!

Are You A Freak Like Me?


Most rock bands look to hitch themselves to whatever the hot new musical trend is. Not so with Underwhelmed. The New York based quintet plays a driving and emotionally overwhelming brand of hard rock that hearkens back to an era where bands left everything they had on the stage. On their new album, Reveal, the band displays the unity and sense of purpose that has built the band a growing national base of fans who love rock, because they live it.

Consisting of Chris Amplo on vocals, Mike Russo on bass, his brother Chris Russo on drums, Paul Boyle on guitar and Mike Armstrong on guitar, the story of Underwhelmed is one of friendship and a shared vision. Starting in 1998, when Chris auditioned for the Russo brothers, the band has dedicated themselves to their own vision of what rock can be. As lead singer Chris Amplo says, “We go for a real sense of purity in what we do. We’re not trying to reinvent rock. We’re five guys playing the music the way we think it should be played.” That way is an amalgam of stylings, containing everything from the anthemic rock Pearl Jam, Bruce Springsteen and U2, to the darker sonic palette of bands like the Doors and the Afghan Whigs.

After filling out their lineup with Paul Boyle and Mike Armstrong in 2003, the band set to take New York by storm. Playing legendary clubs like CBGB’s, the band paid their dues in the competitive New York club scene with an attitude that is at the heart of who the are. Mike states, “Basically, we play with the same passion whether we’re playing for 4 people or 4000. I think audiences recognize that, and it has them feel a real connection to us.”

The results have spoken for themselves. 10,000 visitors to their MySpace page each month and expanding tour base including markets in the mid-Atlantic, mid-West, South and Northeast. “We have a band that’s exciting to watch,” Amplo enthuses. Mike and Chris Russo are incredible musicians – Chris is an unbelievably exciting drummer to watch. Mike just kills it on guitar and Paul just oozes with the most unique energy that we get so much from. He’s a real creative inspiration to all of us.” What makes it even more impressive is that the band has done this all on their own, all self-managed and self-financed.

Now the band is set to take things to the next level with the release of their new album, Reveal. Produced by Tom Hazaert at his studios in Strongsville, OH, the album is a collection of songs that are far more than the sum of their parts. Written collectively by the band, the songs display the maturation of the songwriting and confidence that has come with it. As Amplo says, “We’re all more confident in ourselves and each other, and that really comes through in the songs.”

You can hear that confidence in the “Reveal,” the album’s title track. Beginning with a winsome guitar intro and Chris’s strong and supple voice, the song becomes a melodic explosion that showcases Paul and Mike’s driving and thundering guitars and the propulsive rhythm section of Mike and Chris Russo. It’s the kind of radio ready rock that is beyond trends, and never fails to move an audience.

With its irresistible hooks, “Angel” is the kind of song that leaves one breathless with the sheer skill of the songwriting and playing. Like many great songs, it was one that came together quickly. Amplo recalls, “We had the lyrics and melody in an hour and a half. It was like the music came through me and wrote itself.” And “Leave It All Behind,” a tale of love gone wrong, pulses with a raw sensuality and layer of darkness that makes it phenomenally compelling.

The band will be hitting the road soon – playing whenever they can. “If it was up to me,” says Mike with nods from the rest of the band, “I’d just pack up the van and be gone.” “We love getting out there and meeting people,” says Chris. And with an album containing the skill and depth of Reveal, combined with a work ethic that has already paid the band dividends, it seems only a matter of time until Underwhelmed ascend to a level befitting their status as a truly great melodic hard rock band.

Buy the CD

Outside the Frame, May 6 Recap

Wednesday’s show topics covered the commissioned work process and how to deal with non-payment issues. The Listener Appreciation Drawing was introduced and explained how listeners have an opportunity to win an 11”h x 14” w matted print of Sunset: Oregon Coast just by listening to Outside the Frame each week and writing down the “Tip of the Day”. At the end of the month, send that month’s tips to me in an email and be entered in the drawing to win the print. Each month will be a new set of tips and a new print. See my blog for full details:

A commissioned work can come from anywhere even through the normal course of the day such a trip to the bank or a stint on jury duty, therefore, you must utilize you marketing materials – you should at the very least carry business cards with you at all times; I also carry a tri-fold brochure in my purse.

At the heart of every commissioned project is the Commission Agreement that spells out everything from the contact information, project type and number of works, project timeline to the details of the cost for the project and a payment schedule reflecting each stage of the project as detailed in the timeline. The Commission Agreement provides clauses that cover you in the event the client denies payment for any reason. You can avoid most non-payment issues by insisting upon a signed agreement before you begin the project. Key clauses include the Cancellation/Kill or Rejection Clause with a Delivery Sub-clause; Loss, Damage or Distortion Clause; Ownership Clause; Default in Payment Clause; Dispute Resolution/Arbitration Clause and an Acceptance of Terms Clause.

The “Chain of Collection” is a series of steps one takes in order to obtain payment from a client for goods or services rendered. It should be utilized for two reasons: 1.) It provides you with written proof of what is owed in order to pursue arbitration or litigation; and 2.) It keeps you from being accused of harassment that is a violation of the Federal Fair Debt Collections Practices Law. First link in the chain is the Agreement/Contract, the second link in the chain is the dated Invoice (you need two copies) with a specified time for payment – typically within 30 to 60 days. The final link in the chain is the shipping receipt or the Signed Delivery Receipt (make sure you keep a copy of either).

You utilize the chain by sending a Follow-up Invoice when payment has not been received after the initial invoice. Ten days after the Follow-up Invoice, you call the client to remind them of the amount owed and the dated invoice. If another 10 days pass, you send a Second Notice Letter/Second Notice Invoice. After another 10 days, you send a Final Notice Letter/Third Notice Invoice. If you still do not receive payment, you send a Demand Letter/Final Notice Invoice. Make sure to make copies of all these documents to keep for you records.

There may be legitimate reasons for non-payment such as bankruptcy, buyer’s error or artist’s error. Buyer’s and Artist’s error can be avoided with the use of a good initial Agreement or Contract. Well-negotiated agreements usually foresee areas of possible dispute and specify the obligations of the buyer and the rights of the artist. It also protects you from having your art sold as part of the client’s assets being liquidated to pay off their creditors in the event that your client goes bankrupt.

There are several avenues for collection available to artists faced with non-payment. You can use an Arbitrator or Mediator who is an impartial outsider used to bring about resolution. This is a speedier and less-expensive resolution than suing in court. A mediator acts as an umpire to bring both parties to an equitable agreement but cannot impose a decision upon them. An arbitrator acts as a judge and can make a legally binding decision. Contact the American Arbitration Association’s Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) online at .

Another option is to turn the matter over to a collection agency. Their fees range for 10 to 50% of the monies recovered, often depending upon the amount of money involved and the time lapsed since the work was invoiced. Your final option is litigation which will take place either in Small Claims Court or Civil Court depending upon the amount due and whether that amount falls within your state’s dollar limit set for what it considers a small claim. You can handle you own case in SCC but need a lawyer to bring Civil action against the client.

Above all, adopt good record-keeping habits and policies. Get everything in writing and keep a copy of it. Put everything in writing and keep a copy of it. As the saying goes, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”. Good business habits on the outset will promote good business health. Samples will be on my website:

Be sure to tune in next Wednesday, May 13 at 1PM for Outside the Frame for the show about Mailing Lists and learn why you need them, as well as, how to build, maintain and utilize your mailing list to its fullest.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Stinkin' Good Giveaway

Stinkin' Good Giveaways

Today's (5/6) Giveaway is from Wildwood. Up for grabs are a pair of kewl fun fuzzy flip flops. Now these I really could go for......

On Monday 5/4 Gypsy Goods gave away 25 1.5" promotional buttons made to order. These buttons are great Gypsy made some up for the station and they are great ways to promote yourself.

Last Friday Elegance by Mode gave away a beautiful bracelet. Visit her shop for some beautiful one of a kind jewelry.

Stay tuned.....we got even more Stinkin' Good Giveaways coming up.

We Have A Winner

Thanks to everyone who joined in on the fundraiser. We used to choose the winner.

1 wongoneill

2 lauraspabiz

3 thecoppercauldron

4 sharon.crowe

5 jrs704

6 deronda.designs

7 Meant2bCherished

8 MomsTreasures777

9 catinalife

10 teri

11 shannonspigatopia

12 angelica.hudy

13 schmendrick23

14 mydoggieandme

15 beadlady

16 hollyjoy

17 picardcreative

18 rockerchic4b

19 genasmail

20 chezsorensen

21 gypsygoods

22 charlottemyers

23 mo7tr

24 sewhappydesigns

Monday, May 4, 2009

A BeWitching Find

How about some tasty treats to pamper your four legged friends? Divine Canine is a gourmet biscuitry that creates all natural treats from scratch! No artificial preservatives, soy free, dairy free, wheat free, corn free and chemical free!

This biscuitry is licensed with the Michigan Department of Agriculture and you can be assured that all treats are chock full of protein, fat, fiber, and moisture because each bag of treats comes with a guaranteed analysis of content. A purchase for your pooch or frisky feline from this shop and you can rest easy knowing that you're providing them with the same wholesome goodness you'd give to your non furry family members! Of course, you'll also earn some extra love from whatever critter you bestow these scrumptious morsels too!

They even make treats for dogs with food allergies and sensitive tummies! It says Canine in the name but the shop owner has recently added some tasties for those finicky felines out there!

These goodies are made fresh in the Divine Canine Gourmet Biscuitry and have the eight paw approval from India and Scarlet, the resident lab mix taste testers. Head on over and snag some for your fur baby today!

Friday, May 1, 2009

Want a 5000 Impression Ad on BHR?

This runs till 7pm et on Monday 5/4/09 and then Larry will send me a list of names.

How about a 5000 Impression Ad with Clickable Banner on BHR?

Here is your chance.

A good friend needs to raise a few bucks to see an endocrinologist for a diabetes problem tuesday and the dr. is 3.5 hour trip each way from his home. So how about it........a donation of any amount gets you a chance.

You know him, he is a fellow artisan and the conductor of the Crazy Train segments you hear on BHR. Larry is an all around cool dude and a friend to all.

You can also check out his shop on ArtFire.

Use for paypal and put bhr ad in the description. We will keep track and on Tuesday 5/5 we will use a random number generator to pick the winner. The winner will be announced at 8pm et on BHR.

We've Never Made Advertising More Fun!

Is the thought of advertising your online business boring you? Is it turning your brain to pudding? Well here at Blockhead Radio, we have the cure for pudding brain!

All of our Stinkin' Awesome hosts have come together for a little "friendly competition". When you buy an ad on Blockhead Radio, you now can choose the BHR Personality you would like to be the voice of your commercial!

Thats right! If you have a favorite host, or just have a particular preference you can pick the voice that fits you! And believe me, any of us would be more than willing to voice your ads!

You can choose from many of our hosts:

Gena from Creative Animal Relief, Mondays at 7pm

DeDe Sorensen from Outside the Frame, Wednesdays at 1pm

Walk in the Woods from In the Garden, 11:30 am Thursdays

Rockerchic from The SKAT show, Mondays at 9pm, and Mom's Cafe, Wednesdays at 9pm

Larry, The Crazy Train Conductor

James from Chocolate Covered Bacon, Thursdays at 6pm

Wildwood or Skyline from Tough Times, Tuesdays at 11:30 am

Mama from Mom's Cafe, Wednesdays at 9pm

Chain from New Discoveries, Tuesdays and Thursdays at 7pm

Ruthie from Spotlight On, Thursdays at 9pm

As always if you would prefer, you can choose Charlie the Crazy Chipmunk, Witchy, or Rod (from the morning Brew Ha Ha, and other shows). OR you could just NOT choose, and let us pick the voice that fits your shop!

Currently, a 1,000 impression ad runs $15! You can renew your ad for $7.50! We also will need a 240x240 image for our player to make a clickable link to your website!

You can email to reserve your ad today!

And if you need more info:

Honey Child Designs

Last night I had the privilege of interviewing Nicole of Honey Child Designs. Nicole specializes in making jewelry that is designed to enhance your life through the stones and crystals she chooses to use. I love what it says in the introduction to her shop, so I'll let you read her own words.

"Inspired by the healing energy of crystals, Nicole hand selects and delicately handcrafts every piece. She begins the process of creating her signature Agate pendants by looking deeply into each slice of Earth, examining its wonder and with awareness, Nicole closely studies its uniquely intricate and extraordinary properties. Then, she marries it - stone by stone and gem by gem - with other healing crystals, carefully assembling each piece with a nurturing spirit, to ultimately awaken the magical and meaningful properties of her One-of-a-Kind works of art. "

Nicole went to film school, and has had the privilege of working in several different areas in that industry. Right now she works a day job, and does her jewelry at nights and on the weekend, but some day she dreams of opening her own crystal shop. She told me last night that she can picture herself as that eccentric lady who try's to convince every customer about how much crystals can enhance their lives. 

One thing that really impressed me about Nicole is that she really knows her stuff. She's done a lot of research into crystals and the chakra's, and it shows in her passion when she talks about it! 

~ Ruthie ~

Nominate your Favorite Handmade Mom!

Do you have a favorite handmade Mom?

Would you like to give her a stinkin' awesome gift for Mothers Day?

Now is your chance!

You can win a great Mom Basket made by Mama's Little Monkey's and sponsored by Rockerchic from Mom's Cafe!

This basket is a $50 Value! And includes all the following:

Lilac Scented Oval Soap, approx 3 oz
Fleur De Lis guest size soap, approx 1 oz
"Twisty Towel" Hair Spa Towel, Pink Terry Cloth
Large assortment of Chocolates in "mom" shapes
Alexander Henry Cotton/Green Minky Eye Sleep mask
Flower Pink Flower Pen
Cucumber Melon Bath Salts

Heres how to get your basket:

Tell me WHY this mom deserves our handmade basket of goodies!

Here are da rules:
Only one entry per person
Entry must include: Your name, The name and url of the Mom your nominating, and a way to contact you.
Mom nominated MUST be an online seller of handmade goods
Basket will be mailed directly to the winning entry's nominated mom.

Send all entries to me (rockerchic) at
Please also direct all questions to rockerchic at the same email address.

The deadline for entry is May 8th 2009

Winner will be decided by the best entry by a non-biased judge. The mom who seems to be the most deserving will win the Mother's Day Basket.

The basket winner will be announced on the Mom's Cafe show Wednesday, May 13th 2009 at 9 pm Eastern Time on Blockhead Radio.

The winning entry will be read on air!

Thanks you guys for entering and don't forget to tell all your friends! This is just Mom's Cafes' way of saying thanks to all their great listeners and friends!