Saturday, December 13, 2008

Save Handmade

Save Handmade Toys

Text below taken from Cool Mom Picks (


We're all for strengthening the safety standards of mass-produced toys, clothes, and accessories made in China, and banning toxins like phthalates and lead. But this year, the CPSC passed the ill-conceived Consumer Products Safety Improvement Act which goes into effect in two months and will absolutely decimate the small toy manufacturers, independent artisans, and crafters who have already earned the public trust. The very same ones that we often feature here and in our yearly special edition gift guides.

With this act going into effect February 10 2009 so many people we love will be affected: Moms who sew beautiful handmade waldorf dolls out of home, artists who have spent decades hand-carving trucks and cars out of natural woods, that guy at the craft show who sold you the cute handmade puzzle--even larger US companies who employ local workers and have not once had any sort of safety issue will no longer be able to sell their goods. Not without investing tens of thousands of dollars into third-party testing and labeling, just to prove that toys that never had a single chemical in them still don't have a single chemical in them.

How to Get Involved -- it only takes 5 minutes of your time!

-Find your congress personand senators and write a letter like the sample here.
Particularly if they serve on the House Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade and Consumer Protection or the House Committee on Small Business.

-Send an email directly to the CPSC.

-Vote for amending the law on, digg style: With enough votes it will be presented to President Obama in January!

-Place the Save Handmade! button on your blog or website to help spread the word to everyone you know who cares about protecting the little guy and preserving beautiful items made with love for our children.

Fantastic Resources

-The Handmade Toy Alliance (check out their proposed changes, a lot of which make a whole lot of sense

-CPSIA Facebook Group

-CPSIA information group on ning

-Fashion Incubator

-The Smart Mama

-Etsy business forums

Press, related posts and late-breaking news

Patriot Ledger Editorial: "New law to put thousands of out work"

Boing Boing: "Consumer safety rule could drive crafters out of business" "Good intentions lead to catastrophic results for the natural toy industry"

Wall Street Journal: "Vendors urge relaxed lead safety rule" (despite the misleading headline)

DaddyTypes: "Is CPSC's new lead regulation going to wipe out the baby non-industrial complex next February?"

Eco Child's Play: "New consumer safety laws will make handmade, natural toys illegal"

Mom-101: "In support of work-at-home moms and other reasons to defeat the CPSIA act"

Have some news for us or want more info?

Contact Liz and Kristen at with SAVE HANDMADE in the subject.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Babies and Dreams

This is Baby Bonner #3. I'm due around the first week of April, and we don't know if it's a boy or girl.

One of the hardest things about this pregnancy is knowing that my dad won't get to meet this child, and that this child won't know Grandpa John, who died in January 2007. He was an amazing grandfather to his four (at the time) grandchildren, and adored them all. When I told my mom I was pregnant, it just felt so wrong to not be able to tell my dad at the same time.

But then, a few days later, I had a dream. A very vivid dream. I was sitting down to a family dinner in my dining room. I don't remember who exactly was there, but it was something like a traditional family Thanksgiving meal with kids, grandparents, etc. I looked at the head of the table, and there was my dad - sitting back, very relaxed, watching everyone around him get ready to eat, clearly loving being in the midst of family. I turned to him and spoke, and it was like no one else could hear me. What I was saying was just for his ears. And all I said was "I'm pregnant." He looked at me, smiled a very gentle, caring smile, and raised his glass in a toast to me. He never said a word. Then he faded away. And I woke up.

I know my dad would be thrilled to welcome another grandchild. I know he would be so very happy for me. And I got to tell him - he knows. It doesn't make me miss him any less, but I'm happy he knows.