Books I’m committed to for 2022

Posted by Beth Cyr Kroh on

Book reading list for 2022

There are other books I'm planning on reading as well, but I'm trying something new this year and creating a commitment to finish these. Not just start, but finish. (Because some of these I have actually started, though just a chapter or two)

Some I will read in "real" book form, others will be via Libby on my phone, or audiobooks.

If you're not familiar with Libby - check with your local library. Different areas use different apps for the ability to read books or listen to audiobooks just like if you checked them out from the library. It is AMAZING. With Libby, you can put books on hold and have up to 5 checked out at a time. It can be a great way to read samples or listen to samples of audiobooks. 

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Shipping Info for end of December/January - Dates for Dec. 25th delivery

Posted by Beth Cyr Kroh on

Starting Dec 22nd, I will be taking a shipping break until Jan 4. I may get to the studio sooner, but with all the snow and the below freezing days things are a little unusual around here.

Last day for Priority shipping Friday Dec. 17th

Hey friends - it's that time of year when USPS is super busy. Timelines have already been lengthened in the past year or so, but it's going to get even worse for the next 10 days. First class time has passed.

Priority only shipping from now until Friday the 17th. After that, I'm not planning to ship anything that is needed to arrive by the 25th. You're welcome to order, but just know the chance of arriving by a particular time is pretty low. I won't be doing any rush express order shipping.

Anything that is ordered with First class shipping I will assume is not needed in any particular time frame.

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Thank you for the support for the Gift From The Universe project.

Posted by Beth Cyr Kroh on

Just one more batch to go before I have all the prints mailed out for this year. Thank you so much to everyone that made donations and purchased sponsored prints to help pay for the shipping of all the prints. With your help I shipped all over the country and even a few to Canada! From Alaska and Hawaii to Florida and Vermont and many states between. Well over 1/2 the states had a recipient this year and it makes me so happy to think about the blanket of love spreading over the continent and beyond. 

prints with raven tree and gold moon

 

If you missed out on the round of free prints - you can still purchase and send a sponsored print. And any time during the year, you can make any purchase a gift from the universe by adding this listing to any order.

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The Gift From The Universe Project

Posted by Beth Cyr Kroh on

gift from the universe

It's just about time for the annual Gift From The Universe project. This will be the 3rd year in a row I've done it at this time, though the 4th or 5th time I think? It really is just the perfect antidote to all the BFCM (black friday/cyber monday) craziness.

Being a maker that has issues with extreme capitalism can be challenge. Of course I want to make things and have people buy them. Obviously. I have bills to pay and dreams to fulfill! Haha! But being materialistic for the sake of... expectation or status or obligation is not for me. 

Some years it felt like fun to participate in sales or do special promotions and in no way to I judge my fellow makers or business owners that enjoy jumping in on that. (If you line up at a store and trample other people to buy a tv, yes, I totally judge you, but if you're reading this, chances are that is not you anyway) A few years ago I realized how bad it felt to me and on a whim I started a project. Without much thought or planning, I offered up prints to be sent to loved ones, anonymously, for free! 

Gift giving can feel so special. When I find something that feels just right, I'm that kind of person that is desperate to give a gift early because I can't wait for them to get it. Or finds something at an off time and send it just because.

It can also feel terrible. A stressful obligation because someone else expects it. Or even that you want to give a gift to someone, but the panic and stress of the holidays takes the joy out of being able to do so thoughtfully. The last minute "fuck it, here's a gift card" that I have done so many times finally fell by the wayside because I decided I was just not going to play that game anymore and anyone close enough that expected that of me didn't know me very well anyway. 

I've thought of so many scenarios that leave me feeling frustrated around this whole time of year - maybe you recognize some of these:

Buying something too expensive because the other person equates money spent to the amount of love given.

Giving something you actually think the other person might not like, but... you "had" to get them something anyway.

Wanting to give something but feeling like the other person will be obligated to give you something back... or will feel guilty when they didn't or didn't have the money or energy to give anything in return.

A broken relationship that will result in a "return to sender" envelope or package

Receiving something that you don't like at all and feel like that person didn't even try to be thoughtful or just felt that obligation to just buy something.

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I am all for thoughtful and meaningful gifts and experiences. I'm all for surprising someone will a silly pointless gift because you think it will make them laugh, or you know that receiving gifts is their love language and literally getting mail will just make their day. I am all for that weird gift that makes you wonder WTF and then a few days later you're convinced it is the best present you've ever been given.

And really, none of this applies to children to whom simply opening a present is a delight.

So how does this all relate to this project? The idea of giving something without spending money, without taking credit or getting acknowledgement - giving something out of love without money being involved... what does that feel like? How might it expand your own heart or what might it mean to someone to receive a gift that simply tells them they are loved. No need to give a thank you or send something in return. What is it like to receive something that feels like a whisper from the Universe. Maybe they think they know who it is. Maybe they think of 10 people who might have sent it. Maybe they are right or maybe not. Some people try to guess (and often guess correctly), but some people simply feel the compassion of a random act of kindness, a mysterious moment of love and a reminder that they matter to someone and if they don't know who it is, it could be anyone.

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Interesting in supporting the project financially? Read on:

The first year I did the project, I supplied everything and donated my time. I hadn't really thought about shipping, the labels and envelopes and all the extra stuff. Last year I opened it up to supporters to help fund the project and had such amazing help.

If you'd like and are able to support the project more than  participating and sending a print or two - you can check out the donate page.

To give an idea of costs and why even a little helps - shipping is between $3.50 - $4 per print. For 100 prints that adds up! Besides my time (and what would be the retail cost of the print), there is the material cost of the paper, ink, extra gold ink for hand embellishing, shipping labels, shipping envelopes, etc. $5 literally covers shipping, the label and the sleeve for the print. 

Why not just charge for shipping? I did one time, but prefer to ask for support to cover shipping for everyone who participates. It is easier for everyone involved for shipping to be free for everyone.

There will also be an opportunity to sponsor the project by purchasing the print you send. Those purchased prints don't count towards the 100 free ones that get mailed.

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I'll be announcing this year's design choices next week! 

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Bookmarks!!

Posted by Beth Cyr Kroh on

Bookmarks!! I've created so many "original" art bookmarks that aren't suited for sliding in and out of books, but finally got some printed! They come in a set of 3 for these first ones. 
Say goodbye to those old receipts and scraps of paper.
I’ve been sitting on these awhile, only sharing through orders or Patreon, but now seemed like a great time to make them available to all. I’m selling them as a set of 3 for $5.

And how excited was I to find I had a black and gold book to photograph them with!

I love books. When I was in school I had multiple books with me at all times so if I finished one I’d have a backup. (I read really fast) I’ve always had a stack of books next to my bed, most of them with just a scrappy piece of paper for a bookmark. Finally upping my bookmark game! I’m sure my books are happier.
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