Saturday, March 31, 2012

Small Business Saturday - The Toys We Remember

Upon further consideration, I think Fridays are full enough...with RED Friday sales and the inevitable invitation to lunch, I'm doing really good just to get the champagne opened at the end of the day...much less blog about it all. Saturdays are calmer...usually. This one happens to be accompanied by a steady drizzle and the promise of a pre-game nap later today. But first...some small business love.

I'm going to start with the Christmas gifts I handed out and follow up with Etsy artists I've been using for my business and our home. On my 101 list was to give everyone handmade gifts this past year for Christmas. Surprisingly (or maybe not), the hardest ones to shop for were Neal and my two tween nieces. My sister had been pinning handmade jewelry on Pinterest for months so the hardest part about that was narrowing it down. And my parents...well, I could give them twigs wrapped in twine and bacon and they would think it was the most clever idea ever.

So, let's start with the kiddos...because what they want more than anything is whatever is made in China. If it has lights, sirens, shoots marshmallows, or could cause bodily harm to one's sister, it's on the wish list. That doesn't exactly mesh with what's listed under "toys" on Etsy. Wooden trains, cloth ring stackers, stuffed bunny rabbits, felt food, and painted puzzles filled my page. None of these would fit the bill for 2 elementary school-age girls who play sports and computer games. On the brink of giving up and waving the white flag in the direction of Toys 'r Us, I stumbled upon this....

...a wooden catapult with 3 tiny bean bags...stringed so tightly that the first launch of a cat toy sent it flying across the room and into the office. Perfection. Neal and I enjoyed springing mice at the girls so much that we were actually a bit disappointed when it came time to pack it up and ship it off to the actual recipients.

This particular catapult was made with reclaimed wood in a solar-powered wood shop and is hand-sanded before it's finished off with non-toxic mineral oil. Mother Earth just called. She wants you to buy from these people. They also build wooden toys that move, buses, and people.

The bottom line:
Etsy shop: WoodToyShop (Portland, Oregon)
Feedback: 1079 with 100% positive
Price: $18.00 plus $4.95 shipping
Shipping: Arrived about a week after purchase, well-packaged for protection
Rating: Awesome


  1. I want one of those twigs wrapped in bacon, please.

    So here's the deal. I have to be at a cocktail party at 6:30, followed by a very stuffy dinner. Normally, I would love that, but tonight TONIGHT I want to be in Wildcat Territory. So I will be the one slipping out every fifteen minutes to go to the ladies' room - you know the one at the bar with the TV going.

    You will have to cheer for us both, tho, 'cause that will not work for me. Fingers and toes crossed and all my good wishes headed your way ... go 'cats! xo

  2. I think it's sweet that you're featuring etsy shops! :)

  3. My grandkids love catapults (make believe ones, cobbled together from Legos and whatnot)...good for protecting castles, Star Wars outposts, and other stuff. Plus we have a running joke about catapulting a cat. I think we must purchase one of these!

  4. That looks really cool and I've bookmarked it for future purchase! I love this new idea of yours!! I hope you're having a great day, and not feeling the allergy hell I am! Thank God it was OK in Portofino because it's BAD here!!!! Back to uploading pics/videos...


  5. I love that you did all handmade for Christmas... and this is slightly off topic but honestly there is something seriously magical about Portland. I want to go there SO bad!!!

  6. Tebo will love the comment about the twigs wrapped with twine and bacon (especially the bacon part)... That was great! What a cool idea.


That's it, let it all out....