farewell, large fruity city

today has been my last full day in this, my favourite city in the world - New York City. Although I am looking forward to returning home to my love, my puppies and friends, and all the exciting things the next few months will hold..... I will, too, pine for this city, its craziness, its acceptance of all, its creativity and inspiration. There are few ladies like New York.
My day was brightened by a meeting with Liz Wald from Etsy. Etsy needs little introduction, I'm sure, but for the uninitiated, Etsy is a website where handmade artisans and vintage vendors can sell their wares directly to the public. It supports arty folk the world over and Australia is a very, VERY large market on Etsy. What I love about Etsy is that it allows the little folks who make art, craft and the like to test the waters with no risk attached and allows buyers to connect directly with the creators. As a company, Etsy started out five years ago and now employs 150 staff members so the concept is definitely a winner!!
The meeting itself was a joy - the Etsy offices are something else! - and there are some exciting things coming in 2011 for international Etsy sellers. It's a great time to be connected!
Around the corner from Etsy (they're in DUMBO in Brooklyn - very hip!) is powerHouse Books, who are a publishing house. Michael and I called in there when we visited Brooklyn a week or so back and I saw a book there I liked but didn't buy. BIG mistake. So I called in today and bought it. 
It's called Graphic by Steven Heller and Lita Talarico. 

It looks inside sketchbooks of graphic designers and artists, and I always say that's where the most interesting work happens for artists. I'm barely a few pages in and had to tell you about it!
I've been doing lots of planning while here, for both this blog, made'n'found and my Zentangle classes. 2011 is shaping up to be very busy but rewarding!
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On a personal note, I am returning home to the sad loss of a very special person in my life - my best friend lost her beautiful Mum to cancer over the weekend. Her mother has been like a second Mum to me, incredibly kind and generous to me over many many years. Her loss is far too young and my heart aches for her passing and for my beautiful, brave best friend who has been an incredible carer for her Mum over the past year. It is only at these times - and perhaps because of the great geographic distance between us right now - that you really remember how important people are, and that their love can be your rock, as yours can be to them. I will be home in time for her funeral service but for now I am sending my eyes, my heart and my love skywards, to a new star in the night sky. I will always love you, Sandra.