Noob News

I don't have a recipe today, but I do have some cool and fun announcements about what's been happening around here lately.

Soldier's Angels
First off, my wife signed up for something called Soldier's Angels. They're a charity outfit that sends care packages and all kinds of cool stuff for deployed troops. Jen signed up for the program where she receives a name and address for a deployed soldier every week, and she writes a letter to that person. These are soldiers that have either signed up to receive these letters/packages or have been signed up by one of their peers because they never receive mail whether they have no family or whatever the circumstance.

So, Jen has taken on this task, and I think she's awesome for doing it. Definitely check out Soldier's Angels  - they have different kinds of programs you can sign up for if you want, or I'm sure as with all charities donations are welcome to help cover operating expenses. With the holidays coming up this is the perfect time to get on board with something like this.
Guest Recipe Friday
I wrote a page about my Guest Recipe Friday feature. I've been running it for about 7 weeks now and have had some very positive feedback from bloggers I've featured as well as readers. I love the success of this feature, so I've decided to make it permanent. I know I'm nowhere near a blogging powerhouse, but I certainly hope those bloggers I feature are developing some quality traffic and social networking from it. Anyway, the link to the page is at the top under my header image.
New Ads on the Right
We have started a few micro-businesses in my family. All products are hand-made and we sell through Etsy.

Jenaissance Designs is our jewelry store. Jen makes some beautiful pieces, but unfortunately we're phasing out this shop. There are currently beautiful pieces for sale at the store, and I'll be listing more in the first few weeks of November. Remember Christmas is coming up!

Jeniassance Designs Store
@myjenaissance on Twitter Jenaissance Designs Blog

Stay updated on Twitter and/or the Jenaissance Designs blog for updates on new product listings and promotions we'll be running through to the Holidays.

Seams Dressy is my mom's new shop. She makes clothes for American Girl and 18 Inch dolls. She uses quality cotton fabrics and finishes articles with a Serger for a quality, finished look and durability for every day play.

Seams Dressy Store
@seamsdressy on Twitter Seams Dressy Blog

Most product and promotional updates are going to come from Twitter for now. The blog is still a work in progress! Stop by and check out the cool doll clothes; there's even a dress for Halloween!

SewJenaissance is Jen's newest endeavor. It turns out she's just as talented, if not more, with thread and yarn as she is with beads and findings. This is Jen's growing shop of PDF embroidery patterns designed and created by Jen and a collection of finished hoop art and handmade by Jen as well.

Sew Jenaissance Store
@sewjenaissance on Twitter Sew Jenaissance Blog

Jen has some cool autumn themed patterns and hoop art available. Be sure to follow her for updates on future Christmas patterns and promotions!

Oma's Patch
I know Kate through her husband, Rob, on an MMO Lord of the Rings Online. Jen, myself, and Rob are all in the same kinship - we're geeks. Turns out Kate is crafty as well, and makes cool little critters! A couple of weeks ago she was having a give-away on her blog, and I was the lucky winner of this zombie-defense-force trained ninja!

He comes equipped with throwing stars.
The ninja successfully infiltrated our house using the Trojan Horse tactic - he mailed himself and we unwittingly opened the package. Ever since he arrived we see shadows and blurs out of the corners of our eyes. I was lucky to capture this image, a mere frame of footage because I left the camera on movie record mode. Every once in a while the dog barks at nothing, although we know it's not nothing. And at least once a day the cats tear across the house like their asses are on fire; we know what that's about.

The ninja is also an expert Photobomber.
Last year Jen won a lumberjack from Oma's Patch for helping name her new series of critters, Peculiar Poppets. And peculiar they are! To me, they look like something from a Tim Burton movie, very cool! Go check em out on Kate's Etsy store - Oma's Patch!

Oma's Patch Etsy Store
@omaspatch on Twitter Kate's blog for news and updates.


  1. It's always nice to find out about a fellow blogger outside of what's cooking in the kitchen. I love etsy and I'm off to check out your sites. Thanks!

  2. I think I have to have that ninja and his throwing stars. That is WAY too adorable! I love your guest recipe feature. I don't think I could ever just read blogs. More than 50% of my cooking and baking is from food blog recipes that I find and I haven't tried a bad one yet! It sounds like you all have a lot of good things going on! Best of luck!

  3. I think that is awesome that your wife signed up for Soldier's Angels. I was just reading your guest recipe feature, and I like that. Y'all have a lot going on. Great post. Good luck!

  4. You have a very talented family and your wife is so sweet to send care packages to those serving our country!

    I'm THRILLED to hear you're going to make your Guest Post Friday's permanent! I enjoy seeing what you're making every week!

  5. Congrats on the businesses and family ventures. Your wife is amazing. I think I should check out that soldier's angels charity. I would love to get involved with that. I am totally in LOVE with those little critters. My daughter just played a game in Uni (yes thousands of dollars to play games,lol) called Zombies vs Humans. I am now off to see if they have Zombies. Lol!

  6. Bah, so tired. Also congrats and woot woot to the guest posting. Apparently I need sleep. Missed saying that. Lol!

  7. Lots of interesting things here. I have to tell you that I got into something like that soldiers angels once. Bought a bunch of things for a care package-took it to the post office and the address I have been given was invalid. Tried to get some info from the organization for a better address-no response. My advice is to try sending a letter first!

  8. Thank you all very much!

    So far we're only doing letters for Soldier's Angels. As much as we wanted to send care packages we simply just can't squeeze it into our strict, Dave Ramsey inspired budget.

    We will, however, donate to something like the Gary Sinise Foundation or Wounded Warrior Project for the holidays.

    We're also going to feed a few people Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners through our local Knox Area Rescue Ministries. :)

    @Kim Bee We have another online friend whose daughter does something similar at her college. I think it's in upstate New York near Syracuse. Maybe it's the same school! :)

    Anyway, I'm glad I've gotten such a positive response from the Guest Recipes. When I started I was really afraid people would think I was ripping them off or I was some creep LOL!

  9. Sounds like some great new endeavors! That ninja and lumberjack are awesome, by the way =)