Sunday, February 28, 2010

Something Spectacular!

We bears want to thank you for your wonderful comments! We don’t have much longer here as the temporary hosts of this here blog. The Committee met last evening and decided we wanted to go out with a bang.

In this our second to last post we wanted to do something huge. Something spectacular! Something outrageous! Something that would make a lasting impression!

We spoke at length about what that might be. We finally decided that jumping through a ring of fire would probably do it.

We talked about the logistics of it. The training. The skill. The courage. And above all the costumes.

Then we figured that the best way to accomplish our objective would be to join the circus. Not just any ol’ circus. It would have to be the best. It would have to be The Greatest Show on Earth!

After much consideration and a whole lot of chocolate chip cookies, we thought we might have set our sights a little too high . . . but . . . but . . . but . . .

if you could just imagine what it might look like . . .

it would look something like this.

(We ‘borrowed’ this photo from you-know-who’s camera. Might we request that we keep that bit of info just between us – for now – until we can get retroactive approval?)

Until tomorrow,
The BBC (Blogging Bears Committee) standing in for:

Friday, February 26, 2010

The Committee’s Improvement Project – Phase 2

We bears are having so much fun. Especially me. Thank you for all your responses to Phase 1 of our Improvement Project. Because of all you sweet thangs, I enjoyed an extra piece of coffee cake.


As we suspected, you-know-who has no idea that we tweaked her blog. Now we are full of confidence that we can make a few more changes. This time we are going to be bold. BOLD with big letters. We think it’s high time for it too. (Besides she can always change it back it she doesn’t like it. Good luck with that – ha ha!)

So come on in. Take a look around and see what we’ve done. We learned it’s a bit like moving furniture. Put it there. Take a step back. See if you like it. Change your mind. Move it again. Step back again. We feel like we’ve moved lots of furniture today!

Not only that, we added some wallpaper. Just a little something to add a touch of color. Not sure if she will let that fly when she returns, but who knows? She might even miss that too.

We ran into a few problems here and there. We knew just what to do too. We did just what she does when this computer thingy confounds her. We went to the geeky guy and ask for a tiny bit of assistance. That guy’s amazing. Didn’t understand a word he said but that’s okay. We don’t understand a lot of things that those humans say. As long as the cookies keep coming, it really doesn’t matter anyway.

On another subject, I believe the CEO said she was going to announce the giveaway on Tuesday. We can hardly stand it! Oh, almost forgot. She said to tell you all she said hello and she can’t wait to come back and visit with you. Until then we still have a couple more posts – I hope you will bear with us. Ha ha ha ha! We couldn’t resist that one!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

The Committee’s Improvement Project – Phase 1

Before we explain the title, we have a little business to attend to. We are happy to reveal the answer to the game we started a few posts ago. Here it is:

Wasn’t that easy? Almost everyone who guessed earned an extra entry in the upcoming giveaway. This pool water is very mesmerizing.

Now we, the BBC (Blogging Bears Committee), overheard the bearmaker say something about returning to this blog very, very soon. And when she returns she will be revealing the next giveaway. Right here. Right here on this very blog.

Until then, we are still in charge. We went back to our contract and discovered a few things. Well, actually, it’s what we didn’t discover that is really exciting. You see, we found out there were no prohibitions about sprucing things up a bit.

And while the CEO is busy cutting and sewing and stuffing, we thought we might do just that - spruce things up a bit. Just in case we overlooked some more of that tiny print we are going to start small – as in, so small she probably won’t even notice.

You might not either but since we’re friends now, we’ll tell you what we’ve done. Bend down here and let me whisper it in your ear.

We changed her quotes. We know lots of great quotes about teddy bears so we thought we’d share a couple. Go on. Go take a look. They are right there where they have always been, but we changed the ones she had to ones we like even better.

The first one is my favorite, but Sam likes the second one. Do you have a favorite of the two? Sam and I are wondering. The one with the most votes gets the other’s slice of coffee cake at snack time.


Monday, February 22, 2010

A Lesson in Reading the Fine Print

We did. We scribbled our names at the bottom of the contract for the duration of our blogging experiment. We were so excited that we just said, “Uh huh” and “Yep” and “Sure” and “Of course” without really reading all that little itty bitty teeny tiny fine print that detailed all the rules and regulations of our temporary takeover.

This is one we missed:

All committee members shall participate wholly and happily in the preparation and mailing of teddy bear show postcards.

Yep, we missed that one. It wouldn’t have been a deal breaker but it would have been nice to know ahead of time what we were getting ourselves into.

So the other day, after we finished our blog posting and playing and eating and having a snack and playing some more, we were obligated to put stamps on postcards.

I sort of get the feeling the CEO of the bear making operation might be regretting putting that rule in herself. You should have seen what happened.

First of all, we didn’t know that you don’t have to lick stamps anymore. When did that happen? So when we tried to lick them they got stuck on our tongues; then on our paws and in our fur. In fact, they got stuck just about everywhere – doors, chair legs, on the dog, on the computer monitor.

We’ve got another question for you. Did you know that a stamp has to go in the upper right hand corner of the card? Well, just you remember that next time. It’ll save you some money. You won’t have to go out and buy extra stamps ‘cause you didn’t know.

Eventually, we accomplished the task. We walked to the post office and mailed the cards. All is well. I say well, but that’s really in your point of view. I can still hear a bit of mumbling about ‘stamps everywhere’ coming from the studio.

Maybe we ought to go and find our contract to see if we missed reading anything else.

Until next time,
The Blogging Bears Committee (or the BBC)

Friday, February 19, 2010

The Olympics of Bearmaking

As we bears are still in charge and the game is well underway, we can honestly declare you all are very good guessers. I told you it would be e-e-e-a-a-s-s-s-y-y-y. That’s all they’ll let me say.

Meanwhile, it made us think of the other games going on – The Olympic Games.  Then we thought how terrific it would be to have the Olympics of Bearmaking.

(We found the photo below in a scrapbook labeled – Year of 2000.
This was a Summer Olympics Bear.  We knew him personally.)
Can you imagine what a great spectator sport that would be? Here’s how we envision it working.

You would get all the competitors in a room, give them the same materials and tools to make a certain size bear, and let them compete for best bear. I can just hear the commentary now as these games got underway . . .

Jim, there’s lots of fur flying this morning.
You’re right there Fred. These are some serious athletes.
Look at bearmaker #8, it seems she’s broken a needle. Oh, what a setback so early in these games.

Yes, but they know the obstacles when they undertake this sport.
Now at the table of bearmaker #2 - it looks like, oh my! A pin prick. But she’s a professional. See her shaking it off. She’ll push through the pain.

The machines are really running smooth this morning, Fred. No one seems to be having engine trouble.
Jim, you never know what can happen down the road, but each of these contestants hopes for the best.

Uh oh. It seems like bearmaker #11 is reaching for her seam ripper. What a disappointment!
Yes, that will cost her some valuable time in this competition. It’s not unheard of, just unfortunate as this may well be her last competition.

Wow, look at bearmaker #5 – he’s already gotten one leg stuffed!
That’s true, but we have to keep in mind that each athlete has their own method for reaching the finish. Some will assemble as they sew and other will sew and then assemble.

The part of the course that they must take care is the facial construction. There are no shortcuts there. Any misplaced stitches will surely show and cost them valuable points.

Oh no, Fred! Did you see that?! Let’s run that tape again. Do you see that right there? Doesn’t it appear as if bearmaker #3 has broken an eye?
Jim, I think you are right. Here come the judges to determine if the fault lies with the eye itself or if it was carelessness on the part of the bearmaker.

What’s going on with bearmaker #7? Is she hunting for something?
Yes, it appears she has stopped making progress to look for something.
Yes, Jim, as this point, my guess is that she has lost an ear. That’s a tough break but if she doesn’t lose too much time, she can get back in the race without penalty.

We haven’t heard too much from bearmaker #1 but she seems to be moving steadily along. This is where experience can make the difference, Fred.

Bearmaker #4 seems to be gaining. I think she’s reaching for her jointing tools. That can only mean one thing.
Yes, this competition is reaching the midway point. From here on out, every stitch can make or break a contestant.

Yep, we think having the Olympics of Bearmaking would be an exciting thing to watch. We’re going to do some research on we need to do to take this idea from paper to reality.

Until next time,
The Blogging Bears Committee (or the BBC)

PS We can see great possibilities with our reporting. We could even become a worldwide news agency!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Let’s Play a Game

Apparently our first blog post yesterday got a little off track. I forgot to tell the secretary all that stuff was off the record. Crazy bear. We’re ready today. I think.

Let me check to see who has the notes for today’s post.
“Frankie, do you have the notes from our meeting this morning?”
“Of course. I used my best pencil to write them down.”

O-o-o-o-kay. That doesn’t go into a lot of detail, but that’s okay. I believe we can make it up as we go.

We’ve already run this by the CEO and she says we can do this. I promise.

You may not know but she has been working, working, working on various and sundry bears and one of them is her next giveaway. I assured her that I would not give away any details about the give-A-way but she has racked her brain or wrecked it. Not sure which or even how you would tell the difference. Anyway, she said we could play a game and award extra giveaway entries as the prize. Isn’t that exciting? So let’s play a game!

These are the rules. We are going to put part of an unaltered photo at the end of this post. All you need to do is to guess what it is. If you are right, you get an extra entry in the giveaway. (Remember, she already did something similar with those Clue bears.) It’s so-o-o-o easy. I could do it with my eyes closed. Oh, well, maybe not with my eyes closed.

We were told that we should keep the guesses secret until the game is over so we don’t accidentally give away too much. One guess per person. We won’t be showing any guess related comments, but if you want to say hello to the committee and tell us how we are doing that will be okay. Frankie really wants to know what you think of his notes.

This game will run for a week so you should make your guess by February 25th. That’s the day we will tell you the answer. I can hardly wait. On your mark. Get set. Go!!!


Wednesday, February 17, 2010

The Bears’ Committee Meeting

Welcome! Welcome! My name is Clarence. Yep, Clarence. Nice to meet you. Me and the other bears are happy to be here for our first day of blogging. We stayed up all night long in a committee meeting trying to decide what we wanted to do first. We have loads of ideas and they are all good. No great. Great ideas!

The reason we stayed up all night was because we couldn’t decide which great idea we wanted to do first. That and the fact that it is awfully difficult to see in the kitchen cabinets without proper lighting. Who has ever heard of a committee meeting without snacks? So we had to procure the snacks in the dark because we forgot to ask for them before all the people went to bed.

Then Sam over there decided he wanted cereal to be one of the snacks and he tipped over the box and cereal went everywhere. I know what you are thinking. But it wasn’t on purpose, I don’t think. When we saw the mess he had made, we knew we would be in heaps of trouble so we had to clean it up. The best way to do that was to eat it all. Let me tell you there is not a crumb in sight. That floor is spic and span clean.

That still didn’t help us with the meeting because we still had no snacks. So we had to vote on what kind of snacks we wanted at the committee meeting. A vote was taken of all seven of us and here’s how it turned out:

Chocolate chip cookies-1
Nuts- 1
Chocolate almonds-1
Round crackers-1
Chocolate truffles-1
Chocolate mints-1

Without a unanimous vote, we decided the only fair thing to do would be to have them all. It took us the better part of an hour to get all that stuff on a tray. If you think it was easy, let me tell you it was hard work. Then we thought we could think better if our tummies were full so we ate and ate until we were about to pop.

After that we all got sleepy, so we decided we would have the committee meeting in the morning after we had taken a short nap. We’ll let you know what we decide our first blog post will be as soon as the decision is made.

Is that chocolate chip cookie crumbs we left on the sofa? Somebody better eat them before the people in the house wake up or else.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

I made a bargain with the bears.

It has become increasingly apparent that I need to be able to get even more accomplished in the next few weeks before my first show. I think the bears must have heard me mumbling because they asked me what I was going on about. I explained the situation to them.

Then they came up with what they called a brilliant plan. I am not entirely convinced, but I am willing to give it a shot. Desperate times call for desperate measures – or something like that.

This is the deal I made. In exchange for uninterrupted studio time (as in they don’t ask me where the glue is and then ask me where the glue remover is), I have agreed to let a select few, very few, bears take over my blog for the next little while. It is a small committee of bears, very small. I know it sounds crazy and all.

There were some conditions to this crazy agreement. I promised that I wouldn’t reveal all of them but let’s just say they are supposed to conduct themselves in “an appropriate manner at all times” when they are blogging.

Thus our first lesson in blogging took place.

Bears: How long are the posts supposed to be?
Me:  Well, there aren’t specific rules on that.
Bears:  How many pictures are there supposed to be?
Me:  I don’t think there’s a rule that you have to have any.
Bears:  Can we write about anything, anything at all?
Me:  Um-m. No. You can write about almost anything but not anything.
Bears:  How will we know what we aren’t allowed to write about?
Me:  I will tell you when you cross the lines.
Bears:  But aren’t you going to be over there at your desk doing perfectly amazing things?
Me:  Trying to slip one by me, are you? Think a little flattery will get you unfettered blogging?
Bears:  Unfettered? Unfettered? What’s unfettered?
Me:  You all just be good and do your best and we’ll see how this goes.

So it was that I spoke my last words of advice to them and for the next few days, the bears will be writing here instead of me. Heaven help us . . .

Thursday, February 11, 2010

A few grins in February.

Thank you all for your comments on yesterday’s post about Henry’s book. Anyone who has a notion to see their own words or photos or drawings etc in print can do the same. It can be as easy or as complicated as you want to make it. Why I think even the bears could do it!

Today I thought I would show you Eeyore revived. You might remember an earlier post about poor little Eeyore from my youth. He was ‘flatter than a pancake’ due to old foam stuffing which had deteriorated so much that Eeyore lay nearly lifeless on his side.

I undid the stitching on his back and my, oh my, what a mess! Crumbly, dusty, and yucky foam dust was in his legs and torso. His head and neck were mercifully filled with excelsior which was still holding up pretty well.

Cleaning out his innards was the messiest part but I do think I heard a distinct sigh of relief even before I had refilled him with some new and clean stuffing. When I completed the operation, he didn’t even go through an extended recovery. He was romping around the house like a young donkey as if the intervening years of wasting away had never happened.

Here he is reinvigorated. Maybe it’s just me, but it seems like his smile is just a little bit broader now.

Those of you who I have come to know through blogging have brought many smiles my way over the last year or so. I want to say Thank You for all the grins!


Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Henry’s Book

I made a book.

I made a book about Henry and his tea party adventure.
hb_1It was a wild notion that came to me when I realized that anyone can create their own book.


It was both easier than I thought and more difficult than I had expected. All you really need is a desire to do it. That’s the easy part. I just up and decided that I wanted to give it a shot. In this case, making the decision was a no-brainer, as in I have no brain?

Then I got sort of excited by the prospect of seeing my photos and story printed and bound in a somewhat sophisticated way so I plunged ahead. That was fairly easy too. You don’t think too much about it or you will never get past the idea. I didn’t slow down even a smidge.

The hard part was designing it. Not because of the limitations, but because there were no limitations. If you have an idea, a plan, or a design, as long as you can sort it out yourself, you can see it in print.


The world is your oyster. I had to keep in mind in that if I got too elaborate and spent loads of time on minute details, I might never come unglued from my computer chair. That would be a problem not only for me but for the dog who likes to be let out occasionally and the husband who would probably appreciate being able to check his email more than once every six weeks.


After sorting through all my ideas and putting them together in a file, I sent it in. Just. Like. That. The delivery guy just recently left the printed book on my porch. Do you think we could wait to open the box and see what it looked like? I say we because well, I did need some good computer geek help every once in a while during the effort.

We were pleasantly surprised when we flipped through the pages. The paper feels nice –a good quality – and the printing - superb. It’s all done digitally and costs a small fortune. Therefore, I won’t be giving up the oodles and oodles of income from the bears just yet. ;-P

I have a few copies of the paperback version available and might take them along with me to my first bear show of the year in March. There is a hardback version too. The cover is the only difference between the two. I’ve added a badge to my sidebar that links to the page where my book, Henry’s Invitation, is available. There you can also see a preview of a few of the pages.

I want to return to the pattern I have for Henry and see if I can make him some friends. I’ll just add that to my list of things I want to do. With that in mind, I had better get back to my sewing. Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, February 8, 2010

I’m home now. Goodbye to the sea.

I hope you like funny photos. Well, maybe not so funny to begin with - just funny after some commentary. Bear with me. It’s kind of late, and maybe that is why these struck me as comical. Keep reading and you’ll see what I mean.

To begin with the sun shined? Shone? Shined? How about it was sunny? And even though it was cold, it was a really beautiful day. I’m not sure where everyone was – maybe it was too cold, maybe they were inside getting ready to watch the game, maybe they knew only crazy people would be out today.

So it was just us and the birds. Now this is where it gets amusing – okay, I found it amusing.

1.  It could be simply a seagull by the sea or . . .


“Come back, Amanda, my love. You don’t know what’s out there!”

2.  The same bird as above looking out to sea. Perhaps he is thinking -


“Bring it on. I can take alla youse guys. I ain’t intimidated
by waves – big or small.”

3.  Sandpipers having a conference or . . . 


   playing a game of “Last one on their last leg wins.”


    Now for my last two photos. Very similar – yet different. I couldn’t make up my mind which one I liked best so I thought I’d ask you. Which one do you prefer of the two?  Photo A or Photo B?

This is Photo A – a little mystery or too little information?


This is Photo B – a bit more information or too little mystery?


Saturday, February 6, 2010

Almost Sunday Already?

The other day I was thinking “Is it really Friday already?  Where did the week go?”  Now I’m thinking “Sunday already?”

I left my desk looking like this -

as_1(I have no idea what the little brass candlestick is doing there.)

with a few bears in progress, put a few things in a bag and headed towards the coast in the middle of a huge rainstorm.  I never claimed sanity.  (Maybe it’s time to go back for a visit with Dr. B.)

From our room we could see the rain pouring down, the waves crashing and the wind whipping the Palmetto trees.  By the way,I did not know that brave crazy person walking along the beach during the storm.

Then we awoke Saturday morning to improving weather.  We actually got to see the sun in patches here and there.

I have a lot of catching up to do.  In the coming week, I hope to compose a few posts doing just that.  Unless of course, I wake up one day and think to myself “Is is Friday already?”  This doesn’t happen to you, does it?

Monday, February 1, 2010

Leaving so soon?

gss_1                                       Snow Sentinel

A friend of mine grew up in a place that had lots and lots of snow. We were talking about that one day and what makes snow seem so magical.

gss_8                        One of our neighbor’s children did this.

And even having seen more snow than a lot of people around here, he said “snow is transforming”.

gss_5                                   A view from a window.

I think he is right. For a few pristine hours, before the footprints and tire tracks, before the slush, before people and animals carve paths and trails, a blanket of snow alters the landscape and makes it new.

gss_2             Snow even crept up on the porch – no sitting out there today.

I realize there are places where they are saying “snow, snow, go away and don’t come back another day”, but it is unusual for us. And because it is, we do a little dance of joy at the sight of it and know that within a very short time, the magical transforming snow will disappear and life will return to normal. In the meantime, we made a few memories and I share some of our snapshots here.

My husband took this photo of me getting ready to take a ride.

     These little fellow are wondering “Uh, what’s with the white stuff?”

Two more photos of our deck – it’s so pretty with snow!


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