Being BLITZED by the Daily Dose of Handmade Team

Last week I was selected by the team “Daily Dose of Handmade” to be BLITZED in Team Treasuries on Etsy. A very excited announcement that ended up in 8 treasuries that CandieInk was featured in during a week. I am truly honored and very excited to share with you the treasuries made.

What is an Etsy “Treasury”?
A treasury is a list of 16 items (or less) selected by the Treasury creator. Anyone with an Etsy login can create a Treasury. It is a great way to feature items you really like, or help other shop owners get more exposure. We are after all a community with very talented artists who supports each other reach the goals we are dreaming of.

To see the full treasuries (16 items) click the Treasury Titles and you will see how fantastic they all are 🙂 The creator of the different treasuries are also listed under the picture – click on their links to take a look at some other great shops!

Chocolate is Addicted to ME!

chocolateaddictBy Julie @ Julie Ellyn Designs

Sweet and…

SweetAndJrBy Julie @ Julie Ellyn Designs

Minty Fresh

LovetheMostBy Julie @ Julie Ellyn Designs


Music3By Julie @ Julie Ellyn Designs

Summer Love

i missed youBy Amanda @ Electic Nesting

Oh I love my CandieInk!

LovetheMostBy Cylene @ The Lovely Smith

With Envy

humankindtankBy Allison @ Daisy Lane Design


sheSaidYesBy Helen @ Helen Kilsby Studio

Thank you to all Treasury creators!!


Value Life

LifeGives-3-BA little bit before Thanksgiving one of my husband’s good childhood friends got diagnosed with stage 4 Neroendocrine Cancer. When we first heard about it he decided to have a big beef and beer fundraiser to help him financially. So we did! We sold tickets, had people and business donate raffle baskets and we were able to gather everyone on January 5th, the first weekend after the holidays.

By then our friend’s condition had worsen, the cancer had spread… While 250 of his friends, colleagues, and part of his family was partying to gather money for his treatments he passed away… 32 years old.

One of his friends actually came up to me in the middle of the party and said “it feels like he is here with us”… little did we know that he was in fact with us then, in spirit. We all got the news later that night and as hurtful as it was I guess he picked the right day to go… while we were all there.

I never got a chance to really get to know him but through all the people I learned that he was an amazing person. “An Angel on Earth”… But most important thanks to him and everything that went down I met so many wonderful people. People I would never had met otherwise.. People I now call my friends!

Life is so, so fragile. Life can change any minute so we must LOVE while we can.

I found this quote when I was surfing the net one day and decided to make a piece to hang in our house to honor our friend and remind us of what really matters in life. After doing so I decided to list it for sale as well.. The quote is from Winston Churchill.

“We make a living by what we get but we make a life by what we give” 

LifeGivesFive different color combinations available.
Get it here for $20 – Give Life Print by Candie Ink

2013 Collection is making its apperance!

So, I was not able to keep it hidden anymore… I have been working on some new items that belongs to my 2013 collection. And first in focus are the BOYS! It’s time I started making something for them… I am so EXCITED to introduce my “MUSIC IS MY EXPRESSION” T-Shirt for you all:


I made the this print and t-shirt after realizing how much music plays a role into how we express ourselves. Sometimes we can’t find our own words and sooner or later that one song comes on that says everything you wanted to say and more…

Music is a way to express a mood or strengthen a mood.  When we work out we listen to a certain music to get some extra energy to make it through those last reps, when we are sad we listen to music that can comfort us, when we are happy… etc You get the point!

So Boys! This one is for you and for all those expressions you hold inside.


How it is made: I fimusic2rst created the design using Photoshop, then the image was transferred to a screen. To get the image on the t-shirt I use ink and a squeegee to spread the ink out on the screen while putting pressure on the screen so the ink will transfer to the t-shirt. When the ink has dried it must be heat treated in order to be water proof so I iron it for five minutes. Done! You got to love handmade 🙂


So I lied…

Based on my post yesterday about my frustration over why I have to defend what and how I eat every day… I decided to give some lies a try.

Some people at work wanted to go out for sandwiches or pizza, I can’t remember what it was. And I asked if they had anything non-bread… upon someone off course asks “why”?

After about 2 seconds of hesitation I said – I can’t have gluten… The respond was:
– “ahhh… well let’s go to xyz instead because they have a large selection of everything”

Is my next step to say that I have diabetes? Will that make people back off when it comes to my sugar? Just asking…

What to feed your baby after breast milk

Last week I went on yet another health lecture (I do a few a month). Last weeks lecture was about what to feed your baby after breast milk… A subject that may not be directly related to my life situation at the moment but since I am going to be an aunt in about a month and my friends are having babies like it is going out of style I felt that it would be interesting anyway… and I was right! I loved it, and I love that I am able to share it with you right here and now too! 🙂

I was surprised by how little I actually knew about the subject. When it comes to adults, then I am pretty darn good at telling what is good and bad for you and in what form. But when it comes to infants and babies.. I really had no clue… it turns out. So I am extra glad I went.

What to feed your baby after breast milk

What did I learn??
Except for the obvious, that breast milk is the hands on, best option for your baby, I also learned that if you for some reason cannot feed your baby breast milk (it could be illness, medications, pain, or maybe even adoption) your best second option is natural GOATS MILK! And if you can’t get that… get unsweetened coconut milk. Far down on the list are all the horrible formulas… that not only is completely incomplete for your baby, it will also cost you a fortune (but we knew that already…)!

It takes about 4-6 hours from the time you (the mother) eats something until it gets into the breast milk, and after that a few more hours until it has gone through the baby’s digestive system. (something to think about in case your baby is reacting to something you probably ate). It is important to eat a mix of foods and spices while breast feeding so your baby will not get too picky with tastes later on in life. On the other hand, the mother must limit (or simply avoid) coffee, alcohol, and dairy products (except for butter). Dairy is very hard to digest and for a baby without the best digestive enzymes on hand, dairy should be avoided. Other foods to be careful with are: soy (never feed your baby soy it is ‘estrogenic’), eggs, wheat, corn syrup, and corn for the same reason as the dairy products.

DHA – a substance that is available in Omega-3 is something the body simply cannot make, we must eat it. That goes for everything except for when a mother makes breast milk. DHA is present in it! (Another excellent reason why breast milk beats all other options). DHA is important for brain function, central nervous system, vision, and “feel good” hormone productions (aka want a happy baby? – Breast feed!)

When is my baby ready to try some food?
A few guidelines you can go by when you want to start to introduce some solid foods in between the breast milk are:

  • The baby is between 4-6 months
  • Have doubled his/her birth weight
  • Drinks more than 34 oz milk
  • Can sit up without much assistance
  • Looks away when he/she is done eating
  • Puts things in his/her mouth
  • Looks with great interest while you eat and leans in to and tries to grab your food

When introducing a new food, you should only introduce one new product every 3 days, not more often. This is to be able to tell if your baby will have an allergic reaction to the food or not.

The 7 BEST foods to give your baby first (mashed/pureed off course)

  1. Avocado (you can even mix it with your breast milk)
  2. Apple sauce (off course it is sugar free, we don’t want to make our babies into sugar-addicts)
  3. Pear
  4. Sweat potatoes
  5. Beets
  6. Chicken
  7. Squash

(The 7 WORST foods you can give your baby before it is 1 years old are: Cows milk (even raw), wheat, corn, pork, egg, peanuts, and soy)

When your baby is 6 months (include the above 7 best)

  • Peach, Nectarine, Plum
  • Banana (it is really too much sugar in bananas so keep it to the minimal)
  • Carrots, Peas, Parsnips
  • Turkey
  • Brown rice, Quinoa
  • Olive oil, Flax oil, Sunflower oil

When the baby is 9 months, add

  • Blueberries, Raspberries, Melons
  • Kale, Asparagus, Celery, Beans, Eggplant, Cabbage, Broccoli, Cauliflower, Potatoes
  • Oats, Corn, Rye, Barley
  • Almond butter and other butters made from seeds
  • Maple syrup, and Molasses
  • Yogurt and cheese from goats milk
  • Lamb
  • Garlic

Start introducing WATER for your baby when he or she is around 9 months (given that you are still feeding him or her breast milk) Babies should drink a 4th of it’s weight in lbs in oz. Ex – 20lbs = 5oz  [weight (lbs) / 4 = volume (oz)]
(An adult should divide his/her weight with 2 to know how much water to consume per day [weight (lbs) / 2 = volume (oz)]) So, off and start drinking!!

When your baby is 12 months old add

  • Strawberries, Grapes, Raisins
  • Artichokes, Nori, Mushrooms, Tomatoes, Onion
  • Cashew butter
  • Whole seeds
  • Yoghurt and cheese made from cow’s milk
  • Buckwheat, Spelt flower, Wheat (but don’t go there)
  • Egg, Fish, Beef

When your baby is 15 months old add

  • Pineapple, Oranges, and other citrus fruits
  • Honey
  • Peppers
  • Peanut butter
The Baby Cuisine Cookbook

The food lists comes from this adorable cookbook for your baby!

Now, to the most interesting part of this long post. When I was listening to this lecture and was looking at all of these lists of foods I kept wondering WHY? Why were babies not able to eat (for example) pineapple until they are 15 months old?

The answer really lies in the baby’s metabolism and digestion. Before the baby is 24 months old their system is not fully developed… A thought that took me to an even more important discussion – Immune system.

Your immune system starts in your stomach – adult or baby it does not matter! Let me try to explain how it works:

In our stomach we have digestive enzymes in the form of hydrochloric acid which has a very low pH level. It is this acid that helps us digest what we eat and can after that release the food to the intestines for nutrition absorption. So, if we eat something our (or our babies) cannot “stomach”, there is not enough acid, or the acid is not acidic enough (pH is higher than desired) the food will still be pushed out to the intestines when new food enters the stomach. In other words the food will be forced out. The forced out food that is not fully ready will damage the intestine walls and even break it causing needle size holes. These holes will let the food entering the blood system and the blood cells will attack – the immune system will take over. Histamine gets released causing sinus symptoms, mucus build up and then we might have bowel movements issues, rashes, trouble sleeping etc… (all that just because you ate something you couldn’t stomach)

It is really the body’s own wonderful process to get rid of the bad – it protects us through multiple outlets. To treat the symptoms, like using nose sprays or taking Robitussin and Mucinex will not fix it – taking care of your stomach will! Digestive enzymes are the key! We get these by eating wholesome, organic, natural, and seasonal fresh food.

So, if our babies (we are entering a subject very near and dear to my heart and it makes me really sad to even think about it) doesn’t have a fully developed digestive system until they are 2 YEARS OLD it literally means that our babies also do NOT have a fully developed immune system until they are 2 years old. So my question is: If a baby cannot have for example pineapples until they are 15 months old because their digestive and immune system cannot handle it, how on earth can we inject vaccinations filled with toxins and heavy metals into their system when they are only a few months old, maybe even days? It is so painful to even think about – it makes me want to cry. So, if you believe in vaccinations and are planning to give your baby them; please wait until they are at least 2 years old… Hepatitis B for example you can get two ways – through a jab or sex. Your baby do not need this injection in a WHILE if ever!

Back to the food…
When you read all the food lists above, then you realize, or at least I do, that your baby should eat what you should eat!! Let your baby smell your food when you eat it, let your baby smell on the individual ingredients when you are cooking to develop their own taste buds (this also takes two years to develop) Everything you really need to do is mash down your food into a consistency your baby is old enough to handle. You can store the food in ice cube trays or cup cake forms for proper portion sizes. Store it for 2-3 days in the refrigerator and up to 4 weeks in the freezer. Heat up the food but avoid using the microwave since it kills all the nutrition. If your baby wants to eat the food cold – go for it!

Good luck!

Thanks to: The Well of Life – Center for Natural Health for providing the lecture and continuous learning for me and their followers.  And thanks to the authors of the book The Baby Cuisine Cookbook for the ideas and inspiring pictures.

Let me know your thoughts..

Hold your life in your hands

I rarely quote someone, but this kind of stuck with me as I am reading the heaviest and thickest book in my collection “Staying Healthy with Nutrition – The Complete Guide to Diet and Nutrition”. The author, Elson M. Haas M.D., in her introductory chapter says:
“…A healthy diet most obviously involves common sense. The body sends us messages to change the diet to attune to its real needs; the internal biofeedback system is superb when we corporate with it rather than override it. Yet many of us follow our desires and taste buds, eating the richer, sweeter, or saltier foods that industry promotes and packaged / processed nutrition provides.

It may not seem to matter a great deal in the short term that we follow our passions / addictions rather than our common sense. But this does affect how we feel and function now, and it does make a difference over the long term, both in our health and in our economy…

…So, love yourself and care for your body with good food and exercise. It is the only body you have, and if you treat it right, give it what it needs, in return it will care for you for life…”

When I read it I almost get emotional – because it is so true for most of us out there. I know with my own struggles to become a healthy person. A person others can look up to as well as come to for questions and concerns… that the statement is so true… If we treat our bodies with love and care – it will give us what it can. Our body is an amazing thing but it will not function unless we give it what it needs… It is all up to each and every one of us – the responsibility is all our own… not others. It is not politics, it is not religion, it is not marketing, it is not status – it is just us and our bodies… and what we do with that amazing responsibility.

One Colorful World

Some people have a gift to capture your attention; either by words, looks, creativity, or any other form that is like love potion to the eye of the beholder. I was hooked, in love, at first sight with one of the most beautiful world maps I have ever seen the moment I came across Paz’s Etsy shop: Sunny Champagne and it is a TRUE honor to feature him here on my Blog.

As it turns out; I seem to be one of many that have fallen in love with this amazing map as Paz tells me: “The ‘One Colourful World’ print is my best seller. It’s affordable, with vibrant colours and reminds us of all the beautiful places we’d like to visit someday.“

How would you describe your selling experience on Etsy?
“Sales have been pretty constant since starting my shop. A few pieces have been getting more attention on blogs lately and this helps a lot. I notice that good product pictures also attract more people. To stand out I try to putting more emphasis on quality and less on quantity. The vibrant colours and positive words also help to make connections.”

What got you started?
“I’ve been working as a freelance graphic designer/illustrator for the last 12 years. I started SUNNY CHAMPAGNE to express myself in ways I didn’t in my day to day work. I also had a goal (and still have) to be able to create while travelling the world with my wife and kids. It’s very possible with a successful online business. I’m still working on it!”

Where do you get your inspiration from?
“So many things and places. It can be a piece of music I listened to that popped an idea in my head or a quote I saw somewhere or a pattern I observed in nature. Taking some time off helps me the most by taking all that junk out of my head. Good ideas are born this way.”
What is your personal favorite item in your shop and why?
The “One Colourful World” print is my favorite. Probably for the same reasons other people like it. It keeps me dreaming of travelling the world. I also had a lot of fun creating it!

What’s new?
I’ve been posting affordable canvas prints recently and I’m happy about the way they come out! The Sun Salutation and  One Colourful World (yellow)

The Sun Salutation

A Colourful World (yellow)

Any tip you want to share with fellow Etsy sellers?
“Finding what you love and doing it is probably the best tip I could give. It’s not that easy though but people notice when you like what you do. It shows up in your work.

Also, make every customer feel special.”

Thank you so much for your time and beautiful art available to us. I wish you much success and that you will be able to travel your colorful world with your family very soon.

To visit Paz’s shop click the link SUNNY CHAMPAGNE