Wow, time flies when life events takes you to places where you get to challenge what it means to be happy!
The last time I blogged, it was back in JUNE??!! Okay, let’s not get too carried away by change. Do you guys miss me???
So in the last couple of months, we’ve had family and friends come visit us. Since we’ve moved, we’ve had more visitors come visit us then in a year we were way nearer to our family and friends LOL.
Our new place also house a lot of fruits and vegetables. We now have a garden that we need to look after so that adds one additional item on our plate. Definitely not complaining as we are living in a great place, doing things we’ve worked hard to achieve and taking on new challenges we face with the new environment we’re in.
I’ve hired a new helper about a month ago and that’s to help me with time management so I can design more products. The two pups arrived a week ago and although we’ve been sleeping way less and going on short walks way more, I think they are helping us manage our time better and learn more about ourselves.
In the meantime, check out some of the new listings I’ve launched here:
One of the things I love about my job is that I get to create a plethora of stamps and inspire others to create. To create require coming up with an idea, researching tools and skills to work on the idea and transforming the idea to reality. When I get a request for a custom stamp, I often get an appreciation photo back from my customer to show me what they’ve done. And I’m always humble by what I see because they look fantastic!
I’ve seen my stamps used in so many meaningful ways and particularly for celebrations, jewelry, candles and clay art to name a few.
This month, (and moving forward), I’ve asked my fans to send me their projects with hashtags #etchythingsandaccents and #giveaway so I can show everyone how my stamps got to take part in someone else’s life journey…
CERAMICS CLAY ART
CUSTOM BUSINESS STAMP
Packaging and Branding
In around 2006, I travelled to Mexico (Puerto Vallarta) for the first time and stayed at an all inclusive hotel. PV was known to be the more authentic and rustic part of the tourist attraction. There’s a part of town called the old Puerto Vallarta where street vendors locate themselves and sold to tourists many traditional Mexican goods.
An older woman of maybe about 70yrs old was selling handmade blankets for about $25cdn. If I was a local and not a tourist, it might only cost 1/3 of that and she still would have profited. It is common for every local person to be working. It doesn’t matter if you’re 2 and 1/2 yrs old or if you’re 90yrs old, if you are alive and of sound mind and body, you will be worked. Common asian work ethics.
At a local bar on the main streets of PV, tourists would go enjoy themselves to American music, pay full cover price (about $8-10cdn) and have drinks and shots for about the same price as Canada (less the tax). These prices are definitely not for locals so there were very few, if any, local customers at this bar. Instead, they would conveniently dance and listen to American music outside or ACROSS the street since there were no windows and the music were loud. To me, that felt creepy…as if someone was snooping from the outside and checking you out.
I was waiting outside the washroom when a local busboy came up to me and asked me where I’m from. He was from Mexico, of course, a local, and had a thick accent. He seems to have never traveled outside PV before. I told him, “I’m from Canada.” and he replied, “but you’re like THIS.” (He takes his two index fingers and pulls the corner of his eyes to his sides indicating that I have almond-shaped Chinese eyes)
My first reaction was: Should I be upset that he just made fun of me? Or wait a minute, he just doesn’t know about who or what Canadians look like. I replied back: “No, I’m Canadian. I’m from Canada but born in Hong Kong.” He looked a little dumbfounded but didn’t want to ask more questions and walked away.
I’m not upset with his actions…if it was in any other context, I would laugh and make a joke out of it. (Not a sourpuss) But this brings up a really good point about cultural differences or ignorance depending on how you look at it.
Take for example the recent criticisms on where chocolate comes from. Stromboulopoulis provides us with insight on trafficking children and how chocolate corporations try to manage and stop these activities. While I definitely do not condone these practices, I have heard of these practices as a child myself in China and definitely one of my relatives have been trafficked or traded by the elders in hopes of a ‘better future’.
I watched the entire documentary (5 parts on Youtube) and tried to understand it from a 1st world’s perspective then from the 3rd world’s perspective. Very different for sure. When viewing from a 1st world’s perspective, my first reaction is that I’m glad I don’t live in that kind of society anymore where I have to worry about abduction, trafficking, hunger etc. But I also respect and appreciate, from a 1st world’s perspective, how kids of such young age are able to use their hands to create for themselves what many children would have no idea or desire to learn in the 1st world. Yes, it is about survival but there’s also the desire to help his or her family which is taken for granted here in North America more times than not.
From a 3rd world’s perspective, I can only draw onto real stories of my grandparents, who gave away their daughters, or my aunts, because they wanted only 2 sons and 2 daughters in the family. It was more or less not talked about but I found out eventually. I’ve also watched numerous old school Asian TV series of how the Chinese were to ‘find riches in the West’ but only to find they were brought to do slave work and build railroads in North America. Of course these are all wrong actions and decisions regardless of whether I’m looking at it from a 1st or 3rd world’s perspective but behind these stories are circumstances of which only the people themselves could explain or understand.
Some of the children from the Cacao farms dropped out of school themselves because they believed in helping their family more than education. Who’s to blame then if they chose it themselves? Do they know any better? Or maybe it was the teachers’ fault because they didn’t know how to teach. Or it’s the corporations fault for not trying to change a society’s point of view more. It definitely gets more complicated than our 1st world’s judgment.
1st world views on problems
When money and food is scarce and you have a whole family or possibly a village to feed, people are left with few options. It is difficult to comprehend when it has never been experienced and I’m sure none of us want to experience this. But there’s the argument of who should pay more for chocolate so these kids can enjoy a better life? Consumers or Corporations? But wait, chocolate is a how many billion dollars business? Who’s winning? Corporations are giving 1% back to the communities? How about lowering their profit margins just like every other corporation that may be the cause of the downfall of our economy? Eat less or no chocolate? Maybe but who’s gonna want to cut back on funding then?… exactly.
In the end, it’s not the 3rd world’s perspective we need to change. It is the 1st world’s greed for money and material goods and the believe that everything need to be handed to him or her on a silver platter that seems to be the biggest problem. Who can start a movement on changing the minds of us all without pointing fingers on the other? If we need to point, are we willing to point it at the mirror first? If we ask for change, can we first change our own point of views before asking for others to change? If we need to make documentaries, can we make them about how we’ve begun to change ourselves? Stop having rallies and strikes on how we shouldn’t support others and start reflecting on or appreciating what we have instead. I’ll watch that and will click share.
I have big hesitations when it comes to creating another blog… I’m sure bloggers know what I mean…
I committed myself to making more cards this year through my friend’s digital stamp blog TheEastWind and in attempting to create a normal continuation of a blog here, there’s not a clear way to “Follow” posts like that of blogger.com???
Anyway, I just started blogging my card / tag making session at my blogger site here. I hope if you have time, you would follow me there on my personal card making journey and leave a comment if you’re free.
Last few hours for 20% this listing
Happy Mother’s Day everyone!!
In celebration of Easter and 6430 sales, it’s time for a long awaited giveaway!
Go to http://etchythings.etsy.com and pick out a listing that catches your eye and COPY that URL.
Paste that url link here and tag it with #etchygiveaway
Win that item, a $25 giftcard on Etsy AND anything else that fits in my giveaway bag.
GIVEAWAY EXPIRES AT MIDNIGHT PST on April 26th, 2014!
POST OPEN TO CANADA and USA (Int’l – I have another giveaway soon for you)
On January 18th, 2014 I got Maui’d!
It was a beautiful day with one of the most amazing sunsets. We couldn’t have been able to capture such great moments if it wasn’t for our amazing photographers at Maui Creativity Photography.
They blogged about us so you can check it out there or to see some highlights from my pins click below:
Some highlights from our Maui Wedding.
Photography: Maui Creative Photography
Venue: Aston Maui Lu
Flowers: Kihei-Wailea Flowers by Cora
Hair & Makeup: Pam & Jensen of Orchid Salon
Cake: Marie Audant of Maui Cake Store
Light and Setup: Bruce Sandler of Village Audio & Lighting
Entertainment: Manutea Nui E
Wedding Favors: Etchythings (yours truly)
Scottish Kilt: Heritage of Scotland
Wedding Dress: Tailored by DesignbySafa