Tomorrow's the big day… a new linky party:
I'm really excited to see everyone's creativity. My co-hostess for "A Crafty Soiree" is Katie from Katie's Nesting Spot. She also happens to be my interview subject today for Behind the Blog!
How and when did you begin blogging? December 2008, I had been reading amazing blogs like The Angry Chicken and Posie Gets Cozy for awhile and was continually inspired by their writing, talents, and glimpses into their lives. I was very much a lurker for over a year reading blogs almost every day but not even sure how to leave a comment! My husband showed me how easy it was to use Blogger, something he probably regrets very much, and I haven't looked back since!
Tell us about your (2!) blogs… Katie's Nesting Spot is my family journal, where I share snippets of our daily life, our experiences raising a preschooler, and of course, lots and lots of crafty goodness. It's evolved over time and what was originally a place to jot down things for future scrapbooking layouts now is so much more. ABC & 123: A Learning Cooperative is a place for teachers and parents to share and find learning activities. My co-founder, also named Katie, and I are both teachers on hiatus to be SAHMs and this is a way for us to stay involved in education. It's a lot of fun to see what other parents and teachers are doing with their kids and nice to know we're helping them find lessons and inspire each other.
Katie and her Family
Based on your experience as a teacher and a Mom… Can you share any advice about raising creative kids? I think the best way to encourage creativity is to provide lots and lots of opportunities to be creative. You don't always need to have an end product in mind. Setting out materials and letting things be open ended is the best way for your child to experiment and see where their interests naturally take them. Children also benefit from lot of modeling and discussion. It's important for your child to see you being creative, making mistakes, trying new things, and taking risks. I also make sure I spend time creating with her and talking a lot about what we're experiencing together, asking leading questions that prompt her to make observations and draw her own conclusions.
Do you accept submission ideas on ABC + 123? What are you looking for? We are always accepting submissions for ABC & 123, we post the content areas we are looking for on our sidebar and update it frequently. You aren't limited to that though, we encourage our readers to submit ideas and lessons that they think others would be interested in at any time. If they've just finished a unit or done an activity that was really successful we want to know. All you need to do is send us a direct link to your post along with a short description and subject matter to us at [email protected]. Even if you don't have a blog you can contribute by sending along a written description. We also appreciate it when readers let us know what they want ideas for, we always do our best try and help them out.
What do you enjoy doing "in your free time"– what types of crafts are your favorites? Anyone who's been to my blog probably knows that crafting is what I like to do in my free time. I'm usually thinking about, shopping for materials, or searching for inspiration online and in magazines when not actually creating. Memory crafts like scrapbooking, photography, art journaling, paper arts are my favorite but I enjoy dabbling in fiber arts and am a really terrible sewer. I am teaching myself in extremely small baby steps how to sew but since my crafting time is limited I usually end up playing with paper. I love it because I feel like I can start and finish something in a short amount of time. Three of my favorite projects include:
- The handprint and footprint canvas I made with my daughter, known as ER on the blog, for my Dad.
- A Valentine Countdown that was a lot of work for me and one I'm the most proud of. Like I said before I am not very handy with a needle and thread so this was a big risk for me to take because I was "winging" it the whole time.
- And one to get you ready for the next season, a Halloween Banner using only materials out of my craft stash.
What's your philosophy on blogging… commenting, linking etc. Biggest blogging pet peeve? My philosophy is to blog because you want to, because it's fun, and because you like to meet new people. If you step away for awhile, it's okay. You don't need to apologize, we're all busy and we understand. When I visit a blog I will almost always leave a comment and for ABC & 123 I can visit upwards of 75+ blogs to compile one post. So I guess my only pet peeve is when you leave comments on blogs and you never ever get any kind of acknowledgement for a blogger you visit regularly.
What's the most meaningful part of blogging to you? I'm a fairly social kind of person, the blogs I gravitate toward are ones that share a little bit of personality and the life behind all the amazing projects. I want to know the blogger and their story. I guess I'm nosy☺ I like to be inspired and see lovely things, but mainly I enjoy the relationships and friendships I've built with other bloggers.
How do you keep organized at home and on the blogs? I am a Type A personality, it's built in. I have to be organized or I feel stressed out. I make lists, I write everything on my calendar, and I take lots and lots of notes for my journals.
Sunflower Peep Cake
You also do recipes your blog– can you share your personal fav? It's funny to most of my friends that I share anything kitchen related on my blog. I am not a baker or a good cook. In fact, my husband does most of the meal preparation. I just plan out the meals. I mainly enjoy simple recipes and helping ER make fun things, like the Sunflower Peep Cake.
- Favorite Snack: Chips and Salsa
- Favorite Book: Life and Death in Shanghai, inspirational and one of the first "grown" up books I'd ever read.
- Most inspirational person in your life: My Godmother
- Biggest surprise of your life: Realizing how much I wanted to be a SAHM, growing up I really thought there couldn't be a worse fate in life.
- Coffee drink of choice: Raspberry Kiss at Borders but my all time favorite hot beverege is Peppermint Hot Chocolate. I only like coffee if it's loaded with sweet stuff.
- You just won a shopping spree at a crafts store. You make a beeline for the: Silhouette or Cricut Expression Machine. I have a personal sized Cricut and have been disappointed in how limiting it is. You can't do the truly cool things you see on blogs and the more and more I learn about the Silhouette the better it sounds.
- Best thing about blogging: Meeting other fabulous and creative people from around the country and world that I'd otherwise never have connected with.
- Favorite color combo: Aqua blue, pink, and green
- Food you love: Chinese food, but it HAS to be from the neighborhood place I grew up eating, giant sized dill pickles, and onion rings with ranch dip.
- Best thing that ever happened to you: Moving to New Mexico because my husband got a fabulous position at the Nat'l Lab there and we were able to start our family.
- What's next for you: Well other than A Crafty Soiree, I just got the news that I was accepted in my first Creative Team for Adori Graphics!!! I also registered myself on Etsy as "Katiemade Crafts", but I've yet to decide if I will actually open a store.
Find Me At:
- Blogs: Katie's Nesting Spot and ABC & 123: A Learning Cooperative.
- Twitter: @KTnestingspot
- Facebook Fan Page
- Email: [email protected]
- Blog Frog: Katie's Nesting Spot
Thanks Katie! See you tomorrow for A Crafty Soiree. BIG Hug, Malia