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Wednesday, December 31, 2008
4 preemie hats that were donated to my local hospital.
2 hats, a pair of wrist warmers and a scarf that all went into my crochet guild's sale.
I have a few more items made that haven't been donated yet, so I will post them next year when I decide where they are going.
I hope everyone has a happy and safe New Year!
Monday, December 29, 2008
It's been a great year, as I've said before, and I'm really excited for 2009!
Please remember that even though we've been talking a lot about the square drive for January, you do not HAVE to do that. Indeed, with the hard times our country is going through, shelters and other charities will need items now more than ever, especially after the "season of giving" is over. So keep those items coming in to our own Sandy's Bridge Project and other causes near and dear to your heart.
Remember too that once January 1st hits, we will be starting our participation incentive. You make an item and post it, you get entered into a drawing for a skein of yarn of your choice. It doesn't matter what the item is, and everyone only gets entered once, so it's a completely equal drawing. The one thing I ask is that you do post a picture to participate!
Hope everyone is well and staying warm and dry and safe. If you have any questions or concerns, just ask!
Sunday, December 28, 2008
Regarding the January drive, let's narrow it down to three options.
You can make squares and drop them off at your local Michaels Store if they are collecting for Warm Up America
If we have volunteers willing to sew and ship, we will collect those addresses and you can ship your squares to them
Or: You can simply send your squares to Warm Up America.
Sewing volunteers, please raise your hands!
Saturday, December 27, 2008
it's called Warm Up America Work. there's not even any pictures in it right now, but i figure as we start knitting and crocheting away in january, we can add a bunch pretty fast!
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
I just wanted to take this opportunity to wish everyone Happy Holidays and a Happy New Year. This year has been another fantastic year, better than I could have imagined. We have had some excellent folk join us, excellent folk have stayed with us, and we kicked last year's record right out the door.
I am very much looking forward to next year, where hopefully things will be a bit more organized as we all want :)
Remember, beginning in January 1st, anyone who posts anything will be entered once into a drawing to win a skein of yarn of your choosing.
Love to you all. May this end of 2008 be joyous and safe for you.
Sunday, December 21, 2008
list every time i make an addition, which isn't a huge deal, but i
just want to let you all know about it.
margie has a bunch of yarn that got added, so i've updated the list
and re-posted it.
also, from now on, if you have a ton of yarn and you want to donate it
but don't want to mail it all out to me, shoot me a note and if you
include all the info, i'll get it added up. then i'll list in the
"donated by" section your name instead of mine, so i'll remember that
you're the one that has to send it out if someone requests to use it.
this doesn't mean i won't still take yarn mailed to me - it's just
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
Monday, December 15, 2008
for the nicu
Originally uploaded by craftyone77
here's ten hats and a baby sweater that are heading to the local NICU. yes, the ends aren't woven in on like half, but i always do that one at the last minute. so these are for my personal achievement.
Though I have a few items in the works, this is the only one I can say is done and ready for the count for Personal Achievement.
A sweater, for a newborn. Will go with other items for Caring House, a Women's Shelter in Michigan.
It's Susie modeling again...you know how she likes to do that sort of thing. though I believe you can see the colors and sweater better in the other picture..........shhhhhhhhhh don't tell her, she get's irritable. lol
Thanks for doing this.
Thursday, December 11, 2008
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
Five days away from the end of the Personal Achievement Contest. Are you ready?? :)
Just wanted to let you know that I have listed each month's drive in the calendar area over at the Yahoo page. As each month goes on I will post here and everywhere else to make sure all non-Yahoo-ers are kept in the loop :) I'll be able to get you the information a lot quicker since it'll all be gathered together.
Ninja mentioned Eliseamelie's caps for kids drive... I didn't mention it specifically but thought it maybe could be included as the November "items for men and boys" drive...eliseamelie, feel free to speak here :)
Monday, December 8, 2008
3 sweaters and one more hat, mailing out these 4 plus 6 picture previously on my way home from work today. Got everything addressed.
All items are crocheted, slightly different preemie sizes.
Sunday, December 7, 2008
I've gotten a lot of good suggestions for drives we can concentrate on in 2009. Again, these drives are just things we'll be highlighting each month, but once the address is posted you can make stuff for the causes at any time -- or not. Again, this is all just to try to keep information more easily accessible and to help our group become a little more organized and a little easier to follow.
So here we go. Let me know what you think, and if it looks okay, I'll start filling out the content/getting contact info.
December 2008: The Bridge Project (Sandy)
January 2009: Squares for Warm Up America -- I figure after the rush of the holidays, squares will be a nice way to start the year!
February 2009: Warming Omaha (Robyn)
March: Afghans for Angels
April: Afghans for Afghans
May: Warm Up Winchester
June: The Dulaan Project
July: Preemie items for Ninja
August: Red Scarf Project
September: How many People Can We Dress for my local homeless shelter
October: Pretty Bird Woman House
November: Items for men and boys for JezebelSF's local homeless shelter
December: Pick a local cause near you!
I'm open to any other suggestions or options!
Also, a reminder, tomorrow we'll be one week away from the end of the Personal Achievement Contest. Get that last push in! :)
Saturday, December 6, 2008
2 more pair of slippers sent off a few days ago to Pine Ridge (both crocheted), and booties, hat, sweater for Preemie Project (6 items for preemie).
9 items in this post, if I'm able will try to get 4 more preemie things done yet this wkend, but fear I may have to call it at these 6. Time, time
Wednesday, December 3, 2008
So I'm trying to build up some good information, but I need your help!
In terms of links, what are some charity causes that you like to donate to but you can never remember what their URL is? I have links over on our page for Afghans for Afghans, Warm up America, and Caps for a Cure, but I'm sure there are a ton more I could put in there.
I also would like to start filling in our drive schedule. We have Sandy's Bridge Project as a trial run for this month. I was thinking the Red Scarf Project might be a good one to promote in January.
Anyone else have any ideas/preferences?
Let me know!
As you send yarn, here’s a few things to keep in mind, things that will help me out TREMENDOUSLY.
On a piece of paper, please include your name, your e-mail, and the following information:
* The yarn fiber content (wool, acrylic, etc)
* The amount of yardage, if known (usually on the ball-band)
* The brand of the yarn (also, usually on ball band)
* “weight” of the yarn (ie – sport weight, worsted weight, etc)
If you’re sending a full skein, even though this info can be found on the ball band, please write it down. It will ensure that the yarn will get posted faster. If you’re sending along yarn that you don’t have all the information on, don’t feel bad – just fill out what you can. I’ll weigh yarn that we don’t know the yardage on, and then calculating the WPI so that I can figure out the yarn weight, so that should help people out.
Once you’ve got that info on a piece of paper, throw your yarn (and a buck or two to help with shipping the yarn out to the future recipient if you can) into a box and send it to:
Po box 6487
Omaha, ne 68106
Also, shoot me an e-mail at robyn DOT charles AT gmail DOT com when you’ve mailed a package out, so I know to look in my mail box!
One final note: I’ll be heading over to ravelry and promoting this amongst the charity knitting groups, and if you know of groups in other spaces, e-mail me to let me know about them so I can promote it there as well!
Tuesday, December 2, 2008
I wanted to let you know, for those of you who are not into the Yahoo thing yet, that we are going to experiment with having a drive of the month here in December. One of our members, Sandy, is working on a very local, very personal drive in her hometown. Sandy has posted about this drive here at Blogspot and you can also read about it at the messages posted on the yahoo page: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/HomespunHelpers/
I have learned that the group is set up right now so that only members can click on files and other places where information will be stored. I don't want to change this because folks may want to post their address for drives, and I want that information to be as protected as possible. I'm not going to let this be an obstacle - if you don't want to join the Yahoo group but would like access to the labels document, let me know and I'll e-mail it to you. If you want to know where to send items each month, I'll still post Wednesday announcements and will be able to more readily e-mail you with information that you need.
It will be easier to get information on your own if you join the Yahoo group, but you will still be able to get the information you need.
Again, as we work out the bugs before the beginning of the year, give me feedback, ideas -- anything at all :)
Let me know ifyou can help either with directions on the blog issue, or with the knitting or the crocheting.
Hats, Scarfs, Gloves needed
There were some very good concerns raised and I'd like to address them.
1) Do I have to join the Yahoo group? Absolutely not! I totally understand that not everyone likes Yahoo groups. I'm in a few that drive me nuts for the amount of e-mails I get. If you don't want to join, I'd recommend you still bookmark that page because a lot of important information will be posted there (labels for sending, addresses, the yarn bank, etc), but you don't have to post there, you don't have to get the e-mails, nothin!
2) Limiting it to one drive a month doesn't mean that we will be focusing on that per se. In fact, if you want to go to the Yahoo page and make items for a drive that happened 2 months back you'll be able to do that now because the addresses will all be easily accessible. I just want to try to avoid 25 different people posting about drives at a time because I think it gets too hard to keep track of.
3) Livejournal, Blogspot, Facebook, and Ravelry will continue to run as usual. Indeed, if you decide not to join the Yahoo mail list, nothing really will change except that I'll direct you to the Yahoo page for information instead of saying "email that person. I don't know."
I am hoping that people who do sign up for the Yahoo e-mail list will get to know each other a bit better, but I'm sure we can think of other ways to do that too.
Hope that helps!
Monday, December 1, 2008
If you have any scraps you'd like to send, please email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) to let me know and I'll give you my mailing address. All I ask is that you please let me know what the yarn is so I can sort it all accordingly. Thanks.
Sunday, November 30, 2008
As I write this, we are a few hours away from being in December, which means we are just a bit over a month away from the three-year anniversary of Homespun Helpers. I can't tell you how awesome I feel that you all have helped this group grow and continue in ways that I certainly never imagined.
The last two years have been about trying out new ideas, getting to see what worked and what didn't, and it's all been, I admit, a bit haphazard. My biggest goal in 2009 is to make things a bit more clear, a bit more streamlined -- maybe even easy to follow. I know, I think big :)
As I said, I really took to heart the feedback you gave me on my poll and that colored the ideas I'm going to list here. None of this will go into effect until 1/1/09, but I wanted to give everyone a heads up and time to ask any questions, etc. So here we go.
I have created a Yahoo group (http://groups.yahoo.com/group/HomespunHelpers/), and I'd very much like you all to join. I'd like to use this medium in a few ways. First of all, I have already uploaded a labels sheet and a letter that I'd love for you all to be able to send along with your finished objects. The label, together with the letter, will indicate that the items are coming from Homespun Helpers, an organization in which you take part.
I would also like to use e-mail reminders to keep everybody informed about drives and contests, which I will get into in a minute here. These reminders will be automatically sent to new members and existing members once a month and will basically ask you to check out the calendar at the group page. A link will be right there, so you won't have to write anything down or remember anything -- it will all be there for you.
Finally, I'd like to use Yahoo groups as a kind of forum or chat medium. We are all spread out right now in livejournal, blogspot, myspace, facebook, and ravelry, and each of us kind of have our favorite among those. That means, though, that livejournalers don't always know the bloggers, etc. With the option of e-mailing all homespun helpers members, I'm hoping we can all get to know each other a bit better.
You do NOT have to have a Yahoo e-mail address to join. All you have to do is go to the group page and sign up, or comment here with your e-mail address and I can send you an invite.
I feel and hope that having a centralized location for events, items, and other useful information will make everything a lot easier to follow for everybody.
Homespun Helpers as a group
I mentioned some files that I uploaded to the Yahoo groups page. You'll see there a labels word document and also a letter. While I am not going to crack down or hunt you down if you don't do this, I'd really like to solidify our identity as a group next year, and to that end, I'd love it if you could print out a label or 2 and a letter when you send your finished objects. The letter tells the organization that you are a member of Homespun Helpers, and if that organization ever needs specific items, let us know! This will be the only change in this regard -- I enjoy the fact that everyone can make what they want to make and send to whatever organization he or she wishes. I just think it'll be nice to get our name out there when you send your items.
Another reason I'm posting this early is that I'd like to create a calendar for next year, which will have one "drive of the month." This WILL NOT mean that you are required to send items to that charity, but it means we as a group will be especially conscious of that group during that month, just as right now we are working as a group on items for Ninja's preemie drive or on caps for kids for eliseamelie. Having one highlighted drive a month will cut down on a lot of the confusion. Again, the Yahoo page will have a calendar with the drive of the month and all of the information you need will be there. This means that everyone, no matter which group you are in, will be able to easily access information.
I think that contests can be fun and can give folks a sense that they are getting something back, but having multiple contests at a time can be tricky and confusing. I also got a lot of feedback that people haven't been active in this group because they felt that they couldn't do enough to make a difference. In response to those concerns, I'd like to create a monthly contest where anyone who makes anything for charity can be entered -- and just one item gets you in. No tags will be necessary -- I will keep it up. At the end of each month a winner will be chosen at random and that winner will receive a skein of yarn of their choice from me (or from someone else if you'd like to donate in that way). Yarn choices must be within reason. We all love pure angora Im sure, but um...yeah :)
Most respondents to my poll said that they would like to have an annual goal set for next year, and many said they'd like to have monthly goals as well.
For 2009, the annual goal will once again be 4,000 items. I think that it's a challenging number, but attainable, and if we succeed, we'll be awfully close to 10,000 items in just 3 years, which is mind-blowing.
As for monthly goals, I would like to see you all post your own monthly goals and let us know how you do with them. I know a lot of you are goal-oriented anyway, so it will be fun to cheer you on! Every month we can share our goals either through whatever group you post to or via the Yahoo group, and we will go from there.
I know that not everyone wants to participate in this and that's totally cool, but a few people seemed interested.
What I'd like to do is create a backlog of scraps of yarn that people don't want anymore. For now, I'll say that i'll be in charge of this but if someone wants to help/take over, I am so into it! Anyway, the principal is this:
You finish a project and you have half a skein of yarn that you never want to see again.
You send to me with a note saying what kind of yarn it is
I enter said yarn into an excel file that will be located at the Yahoo groups page
When someone is wanting to make squares, preemie items, a scrap bag afghan, or anything else, they will be able to go to that excel database and see what's available.
I will ship said yarn to said person.
Sending a couple of bucks with your leftovers to help with shipping would be ideal.
Depending on how the economy goes, 2009 could be a bit of a pinched year for all of us, so I figure this is a good way to recycle and help each other out.
That is what I am thinking for now. I would very much like your feedback, your membership in the Yahoo group, and all that jazz. And if you have ideas for drives for the months of next year, let me know that as well.
Saturday, November 29, 2008
Here they are:
Thursday, November 27, 2008
I want to thank everyone for their thoughtful insight on my poll. I'm hoping to shake things up a little bit for 2009 and really appreciated that you all took the time to give me some direction on what you would or would not like to see.
I am, as always, awed by and thankful for all of you.
I also want to post a reminder, just because it's come up -- if you get together with friends or a group and donate items to a charity and you have a picture of all of the items together -- you can post that picture here and we can count everything. The purpose here, at least as of now, is not just to say, we members did this, but it's more to say this is a ton of stuff that people from all over made and donated to charity. Just something I thought I'd toss out there.
For those that celebrate, I hope you had a glorious Turkey Day.
Thanks for all you do!!!
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Saturday, November 22, 2008
As we head towards the end of November and the holiday season, I know a lot of you are going to get more and more involved in presents, family get-togethers, and all that happy stuff. Me too! It'll be the beginning of 2009 before we all know it.
We are heading, believe it or not, towards the third anniversary of Homespun Helpers, and I would very much like to receive input from all of you about how you would like to see things go next year.
I have created a poll and if you have time, I'd really appreciate it if you could check it out. If you have other comments that you'd like to leave for me personally, let me know -- I can be e-mailed or otherwise contacted out of the public limelight :)
The poll is here: http://joriejc2.livejournal.com/424593.html?mode=reply
Thank you so much in advance for everything you all do!
Thursday, November 20, 2008
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
So here is what is going on this fine, cold, snowy, blistery Wednesday (well, at least here):
As JezebelSF so kindly posted, we are less than a month away from that Personal Achievement Contest!
We are also less than a month away from the 10 items for Ninja preemie drive -- Ninja, please make sure you check over at blogspot as some of our blogspotters want to send stuff to you! (http://homespunhelpers.blogspot.com)
I am looking for homemade bags for Operation Bag of Home -- I have stuffing and no bags this time!
My friend Juniper is collecting Wintery items for a local school. That stuff can be sent to me.
I believe eliseamelie is still collecting items for Caps for Kids, and Robyn is still collecting items for Warming Omaha.
I am also still waiting for nominations for those "cabinet positions" i talked about -- I have a person who would like to fill the events/challenges job, and Ninja and I were talking about a yarn bank...anyone else?
That's all I can think of for now. I hope you are all hanging in there during these turbulent times.
Monday, November 17, 2008
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Sunday, November 9, 2008
Afghans for Afghans is looking for 300 pairs of homemade kid-sized mittens or gloves by 11/20. Everything needs to be made of at least 80% wool.
For those of you who have been wanting a chance to try your hand at mittens (no pun intended), now is your time! Check out the pattern at Bev's Country Cottage if you're a crocheter -- very basic pattern and they turn out so cute! :)
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
Eliseamelie is collecting
Eowyn_Ulysses is collecting homemade items for a fundraiser
Juniper is collecting hats, scarves, etc for a local school district's kids
Robyn is collecting warm things for Warming Omaha
Priscilla's guild is looking for items (preferably boy items) for a Salvation Army drive
I need bags for Operation Bag of Home! I actually have the stuffing this time :)
10 preemie items for Ninja drive (ends by 12/14)
Personal Achievement Contest is still going!
If you want to sign up for a charitable crafting e-newsletter, please go to the livejournal profile (http://community.livejournal.com/homespunhelpers) or to my blogspot blog (http://ladybugnotes.blogspot.com) and hit the button to subscribe. The e-newsletter will give updates about Homespun Helpers, other groups collecting items, nifty patterns, etc.
Elections: Don't forget, I'm taking nominations all this month for the three positions that will open up for next year. So far I have one nomination!
Happy Hump Day!
Saturday, November 1, 2008
Happy November! I hope everyone is having a fun, relaxing, yet completely safe Halloween weekend.
I have been doing some thinking, and I have come to an important conclusion. I think that we are big enough and strong enough that we need to become a bit more, well, organized. When Julie and I started Homespun Helpers almost 2 years ago now, I don't think we really even thought it would get off the ground. Now, here we are, with over 200 members, 4 different sites (Ravelry, Facebook, Livejournal, and Blogspot), tremendous people, and over 6,000 items handmade for charities. And yet, things are still running the way they were then, i.e., I am for some reason trying to do everything. I think that is starting to become a handicap rather than something awesome :)
So, what I would like to do is begin an election process for a few different positions that would begin 1/1/09. Those positions are:
Vice President of Communications: This person would work with me on the pending e-newsletter (contributing content, etc), building a web site, contacting other charities to see if they would want to work with us or to see if any of their members would want to join us, and probably other things I'm not thinking of right now.
Vice President of Development : This position would involve working with me on coming up with goals (weekly, monthly, whatever), keeping those goals organized, keeping running drives organized, and finding ways to encourage active participation both online and even offline!
Vice President of the "Treasury": I want to continue to shy away from taking monetary donations. We are not an official "organization" by the government's terms and applying for 501c3 status is just too darned expensive and complex as of now. But, what this person would do is work with me to find a not-for-profit partner that would be willing to work with us the way the Friends Society has paired with Afghans for Afghans. This position would also be responsible for assisting me in organizing and gathering supplies, both for drives and for people who may want to participate but who feel economically pitched and don't feel they can go out and get yarn and what-not that they need.
Over the next month, I will be taking names for nomination. I would like for all of this to be very public. If you see that you are nominated for a position and you don't want to do it, please say so as soon as you can. Yes, you can nominate yourself, but only for one position. All nominations must specify the title that you think that person would be suited for.
If this gets ugly in any way, the election process will be over and this idea will be null and void.
I will announce nominees for each position on December 1st and I'll accept votes until December 15. Winners will be announced on December 16. Voting will be done in some way that is confidential, but I need to think about that :)
If anyone has any questions or concerns about this, please let me know.
I selected the winner at random, using rolled dice. And the winner is.... eowyn_ulysses!! Please email me at gilafied at gmail dot com with an email address to which I can send your gift certificate for JoAnn.com
Friday, October 31, 2008
I was thinking of starting an e-newsletter, not just for Homespun Helpers but hopefully, eventually, for charitable crafters in general.
I have a button for signing up on the LJ community profile page (community.livejournal.com/homespunhelpers) and I'll post it right here...and in other places. It'll ask you to subscribe and if I get enough response, I'lll try to have the first enewsletter out by the end of November.
For Email Marketing you can trust
Thursday, October 30, 2008
Now if I can post this before someone else posts an entry while I'm typing. ;-)
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Anyway, that being said, we are getting into an exciting time of the year, when holiday crafting battles with the desire to keep hands, necks, and heads warm and cozy. I can't wait to see what you all make for both causes as the year continues on.
Post here with any drives, contests, or works in progress you care to share...and remember...Zort's one for one contest is about to expire and right now we don't have many entrants. One item, no matter what it is, counts for the contest. Get in there! :)
If I don't hear from you in the meantime, Happy Halloween, everybody. Eat lotsa candy sans regret!
Sunday, October 26, 2008
Thursday, October 23, 2008
I doubt it will be included, but there was an opportunity to talk about special projects and I mentioned y'all here (as well as Operation Bag of Home). If it does get included in her movie, we'll be famous! ;) Heehee :)
I'll keep you posted.
ETA: News on the "Brain Freeze" drive...if you want to send items for that cause, you can send stuff to me...just give me a way to e-mail you and I will send you my address. Remember, I can only do US Mail...deliveries are a pain in the butt cuz I live in an apartment building!
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
I would like to send out a gentle reminder that with only a week.5 left in October, Zort's One for One contest is rapidly coming to a close, and we have gotten very few entries so far! Remember, all you have to do is post a picture of one item for charity (anything) and you get entered into the drawing! Everybody only gets entered once, so it's a free-for-all!
I would also like to say that amazingly, we are very very close to hitting 3,000 items ALREADY! You recall that we didn't get there till just around Christmas last year, so we are kicking last year's butt. Way to go, everybody!!!
I also haven't posted for awhile and haven't posted much while all of this economic turmoil has been going on, but I want to reiterate that (hopefully) we are not just a place to post charitable items, but we are also a crafty community. Even if you aren't doing much charitable crafting now, please feel free to post with interesting patterns you've seen, interesting ideas, or holiday works in progress. Or, if any of you are squirreling away things in case the economy really gets out of control, show pictures of clothing you are making for your own use!
We want to keep ya, even if you don't have much going on in the crafty department right now.
Happy Hump Day!
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
I recently found out that the elementary school in my neighborhood has an above average number of students that live in local shelters. Already we have seen these kids walking to school without sweaters, hats, etc.
The nice thing is we don't need a ton of items to really make a difference. And I am reaching out to a few different groups so we should be able to gather the full range of items. Also, we don't want anything too fancy as the kids are at the age where they'll lose a few items over the course of the winter.
So, the standard gloves, hats, scarves are needed, for boys and girls of elementary school age. The school colors are blue and white if that helps narrow down choices. We probably need the most help with hats and gloves/mittens as we already have a plan in the works to do some easy fleece scarves. This would be great for the sewers among us!
Never having done this I hope I am following the rules. If you have something for us, please tag the item "Prevent Brain Freeze". And then email off line to get mailing information, I guess?
Super appreciate any help you can give!
Sunday, October 12, 2008
Wednesday, October 8, 2008
Well, it's hump day. We all made it this far! Can we make it the rest of the week!?
I was thinking it might be fun to make Wednesday a "Works in Progress" day as well as a contest and drive day. Your picture doesn't have to be something you're working on for charity...I think we all get so cued up into our tally and our numbers that we lose track of how fun it is to craft, and maybe more importantly still, how skilled you all are!!
So, either commenting here or making your own post, please feel free to share information on contests, drives, collections, knit-alongs, or anything else, and share "in progress" photos of projects you're working on now!
Please remember to check livejournal if you're a blogspotter, and check blogspot if you're a livejournaler...these posts are happening in both places :)