I just read “Not a Cracker” on my to-do list instead of “Nutcracker”.

And yes I was the one who wrote my to-do list. Like an hour ago. I should add “writing lessons” to my list (but I may not be able to decipher it). And maybe I should eat some crackers because I’m starving and I obviously want them.

Kurt Adler 16-Inch Wooden and Polyresin Gingerbread Nutcracker

Wooden and Polyresin Gingerbread Nutcracker $37.99

For the past three years we’ve taken our children to see The Nutcracker and then they each get to pick out a nutcracker from the gift shop to remember their day. We then we make them put their over-priced crackers on a high shelf and threaten them not to play with them or they’ll break. Yay.

This year I’ve decided to embrace the concept Experiences > Things. So instead of random Hanukkah gifts that they’ll only play with for a few hours, we’re taking them to The Nutcracker, buying the excessively expensive nutcrackers that they’ll get in trouble for playing with and then spending the night in a hotel for the perfect staycation.

Mother of the year, right?? Yes? Now where can I find me some crackers?

Nutcracker Sugar Cookies from Sugar Me Desserterie

Nutcracker Sugar Cookies from Sugar Me Desserterie

It’s Ugly Christmas Sweater Time Again!!

‘TIS THE SEASON TO WEAR UGLY…FLALALALALALALA. If you’re looking for the ugliest Christmas sweater on the block you’ve come to the right place. Check out my Etsy Shop before they’re all gone! And yes people, I am Jewish.

Look At Me, I’m Hip Urban Julie.

So it all started about a month ago when my office moved locations and the new building can’t offer parking spaces to everyone. There’s this imaginary waiting list, which no one can actually produce in real life, in which we will all start being awarded spaces at some undeclared moment in the future. In the meantime we’re welcome to pay hourly parking…which comes to an obscene amount of money. I tried this for a couple of weeks and just can’t do it. That’s my shopping money!

Marta, Etsy Blog, Etsystalkers.com

Waiting for the train.

My option? Ride Marta (Atlanta’s lame public transpiration) to work.  When I say lame, I mean no one in the city actually rides it because it doesn’t actually go anywhere that you need to be. But as luck would have it, there’s one stop across the street from my office. So, today is day 3 of my Marta adventure and I have to say (drumroll please)…I’m digging it.

Everyone at work (and at home) pretty much had the same reaction…”You’re riding Marta to work? Really?” Yes people, really.



MARTA Transit Map, Louisiana Prints, Etsy Blog, Etsystalkers.com

MARTA Transit Map | Louisiana Prints



I like to wave at people sitting in traffic on the highway, judge people on the train (because I’m super perfect) and listen to Audible. You see, hip urban folks always travel with ear phones.

Here are a few of the people I’ve come across so far…

(1) Three tweens and dad coming home from some sort of summer outing. The girls were singing happy songs and being super silly without a care in the world. This, I loved.

(2) A man begging for food money while eating a bag of Skittles. (I totally judged him).

(3) A girl with a super hip bag. I want one now.

(4) A cute, sleeping couple (I probably should have woken one up to see if they missed their stop. Ooops).

(5) Some guy holding up a pamphlet about something religious. Does this dude think the train is the right forum for this? Does it work? Who converts religions on public transportation?

Marta, Etsy Blog, Etsystalkers.com
Yes, I actually took a picture of his shoe.


(6) The tallest man I’ve ever seen. Estimated shoe size = 20.

(7) On the second day I already recognized someone from the first day’s ride. He’s really sleepy and carries an iPad. Stay tuned for future developments in this man.

To be continued…

During the summer I sometimes (always) put on my seat warmers and then blast my car air conditioning.

What? It feels good on my back. I feel like it’s and economical way to comfort my delicate back since I practically live in my car. My husband thinks I’m clinically insane for doing this…which is probably true but whatevs.

Three Little Chickadee, Car organizer, etsy blog, etsystalkers.com, Chevron Zig Zag, Personalized Trunk

Car Organizer With Cooler | Three Little Chickadee

You know what else I need to keep me nice and cool in my hot, hot seat? Delicous drinks that are kept cold in one of these awesome car organizer and cooler set from Three Little Chickadee.





I mean really, what will they think of next? Coolers with wheels? Oh.

Etsy blog, amazon.com, Trunk Organizer and Cooler Set, etsystalkers.com

Trunk Organizer and Cooler Set | Picnic at Ascot

P.S. I’ve had a broken toe for three weeks and have done nothing to fix it except wear flip flops because real shoes are too painful. Is this a bad idea? Remember that I’m clinically insane…


First let me say that it’s been wayyyyyy too long since I’ve posted. For this I am sorry (not sorry). But I’ve really, really missed it so here I am just a girl asking my readers to love me (name that movie).

Anyhoo, this past week my kids have been at the beach with Grandma and Pappa while the hubby and I have enjoyed a childless week at home. #brag #quiet #cleanedouttupperware

So on one of these days after work I thought to myself, “Self…you haven’t been to a mall just to browse with no particular goal for oh…years.” And off I went, to a mall. To browse. And it was weird. And different.

The following are my observations:

Vintage Campbell-French Co Metal Grocery Shopping Cart, etsy blog, metal cart

Vintage Grocery Cart from Look What The Cat Dragged In

Malls don’t offer carts and it appears that I only shop at stores with carts. Target,  grocery stores, Marshall’s, etc. Where can I find a freaking cart? My arm hurts!





Do all stores have signature fragrances? I got a whiff of a new scent with every new store I entered.

Should I be buying fragrances?

perfume, etsy blog, fragrances, Pacific Perfumes

Floral Solid Perfume from Pacific Perfumes








Should I get a makeover at the makeup counter?

I’m on the first floor but the bathroom is on the third. WHY???

Just because I can fit into clothes in the Junior’s section, does it mean I should shop there? Is there an age cut off?

Are hot pink cropped pants a thing now?

Why are teenagers wearing crop tops in this air-conditioned mall?

Fork Knife Spoon Art, etsy blog, mall court, kitchen wall art,

Kitchen Wall Art by Daphne Graphics

Do they still give out free samples in the food court?

How do I get out of here?

Let’s just say the next day…I stuck to Target (and to shopping on Etsy.com of course).

Introducing a new guest poster!

Hey everyone! I thought I’d mix things up a little bit on Etsy Stalkers and introduce you to Michael Prywes from Prywes Schwarz, PLLC. Who is this Michael you ask? He’s an attorney dedicated to helping others start and run their own businesses. And he has a creative background. And he’s an all-around good guy who has some amazing tips to share with Etsy shop owners.

So without further ado, I bring to an article that actually contains actionable information…

Why Do Entertainment Stars Like Katy Perry and Taylor Swift Go After Small Businesses for IP Infringement?

The short answer? Because they can. You may have heard that Etsy sellers have been sent “Cease and Desist” letters for incorporating Taylor Swift’s lyrics, or that an entrepreneur sculpting a 3-D likeness of the “Left Shark” from Katy Perry’s Super Bowl performance has been accused of copyright infringement. But, really, why go after the “little guy?”


Even if musicians and other entertainers make a lot of money, they often see legal fees as the cost of doing business in a “360 degree” world. They want to make more money and may not want their personal brands co-opted by strangers. But intellectual property law–copyright, trademark, patent, and licensing–is complicated, and small business startups are often surprised when they hear from lawyers from other parts of the country. There are a few issues in intellectual property law that have made small businesses ripe for C&D letters and actual litigation (lawsuits) from entertainers.

The Rules for Copyright, Trademark, and Patent Differ

It seems everywhere you look, big name artists are embroiled in litigation or some sort of legal dispute. Most of these battles settle before trial, so the outcome rarely affects “case law.” However, a disturbing trend of late is the tendency of lawyers to try to make trademark out of copyright cases, copyright out of patent cases, and generaly shoehorn one type of law into another. For instance, Taylor Swift is making claims for trademark infringement of lyrics. To try to make sense of this, let’s take one of her big hits “Shake It Off.” Now, it would be impossible for Ms. Swift to claim she created the phrase “shake it off,” so she would find no refuge in copyright law. But she may claim that the phrase has become so distinctively associated with her song–maybe even has acquired “secondary meaning”–and she may use the phrase in commerce.

Related: Don’t Get Crushed By a Cease-and-Desist Letter

Trademark law requires quick response from the holders of trademark, as a failure to oppose someone else’s use of the mark (name, design, or phrase) may be seen as a tacit surrender of any claim to the mark. Trademark law is meant to be a battleground; it often becomes an area where the deep-pocketed claimant can attempt to shut down the poorer defendant. One recent example is the letter clothing entrepreneurs received from a lawyer for Seattle’s Space Needle, claiming trademark infringement for a black-and-white drawing of the Space Needle from a photo taken by one of the entrepreneurs. The idea that the owner of a building can claim a monopoly on the use of any image of that building may be anathema to creativity and innovation, but a successful defense would not be a slam dunk for a tiny retail business and is often just not worth it. A cease and desist letter for trademark infringement can be written for next to nothing, yet forces a small business into submission if it doesn’t know how to fight back.


On the other hand, lawyers sometimes try to force a square trademark or patent peg into the round hole of copyright. Copyright law is old, in need of serious updating, and comes with riders such as the Digital Millenium Copyright Act (DMCA) that can sometimes do more harm than good. Because Katy Perry and the NFL likely did not anticipate the meme of the “Left Shark,” it had not registered the Left Shark with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Since a creative work’s copyright begins at the moment of creation, a copyright cease and desist was sent instead. However, it does not sound like a valid claim, because the costume was not created by Katy Perry, and the sculptor selling the shark has not copied the creative expression of the Left Shark’s Super Bowl performance.

IP Law Evolves and Becomes More Difficult to Navigate

But why are lawyers using different forms of IP law to go after unsuspecting defendants? For one thing, IP law is constantly being reshaped and re-defined by the dizzying progress of technology. Google has found itself a defendant in two lawsuits that demonstrate the apparent uncertainty of copyright law: one by an actress who sent a DMCA takedown notice for film in which she appeared, claiming she had a moral right to her performance, and another by tech titan Oracle, which claimed copyright in Android source code (usually, software disputes are fought in patent court). The DMCA is likely to be overhauled. If case law is not settled as to whether an actress can claim copyright for her own performance in another person’s film and a computer company can claim that source code is a creative work, creative lawyers can find multiple opportunities and causes of action to extract money from businesses.

Music Contracts and Royalties Schemes Have Changed

In fact, the Copyright Office is aware of all of the changes technology brings to the world of music and has recently issued a 2015 report on Music and Copyright. The report, a massive 200+ page tome, acknowledges the challenges and changes of the music landscape, including the distribution of royalties to the indie artist. However, even though royalties schemes and copyright law are due for overhaul, indie labels, musicians, and agents are more likely to be focused on the fundamental and practical realities of the music business: now, more than ever, the music business is not about the music. It’s about the whole package.

Just as theatrical distribution of film is a loss leader for DVD, digital, and merchandising, a song is just the beginning of an entire branding blitz. For instance, artist management contracts and music contracts often involve a “360 deal” or “multiple rights deal” which gives music labels profit participation in all aspects of an artist’s income, not just income from recordings. While we may not be privy to the particulars of their different relationships and contracts, and the 360 deal may not be applicable in these situations, you can be sure the lawyers for celebrities such as Perry and Swift recognize that the brand is so much bigger than the music. However, as a practical matter, cultivating goodwill is also a part of their brand, and if a little entrepreneur makes big waves in the press and social media, celebrities may back down. A good lawyer knows the law AND practical consequences in the “real world.”

Sometimes, when a company or celebrity is powerful enough, a simple letter is all that is necessary to destroy the creative impulse. In the end, a small business can successfully fight cease and desist, but would be wise to investigate potential intellectual property pitfalls before making rash responses to the war drums of “Big Law.”

Related: Music Copyright, Trademark, First Amendment Legal Lessons Startup Labels and Musicians Can Learn from Disney, deadmau5, WuTang, and Pharrell

Note: The embedded images are screenshots taken from the websites Etsy.com and Thingiverse.com. 

Topics: indie, copyright law, licensing, contracts, fair use, trademark, artists, music, DMCA, cease and desist, entrepreneur

Valentine’s Day…Let’s Do This.

Is it wrong that all I want for Valentine’s Day is to have my face peeled off? Seriously people, there’s no better way to say ‘I Love You,’ than to give your loved one a chemical peel (performed by a licensed esthetician of course). P.S. My husband thinks I’m insane (per usual).

I’m assuming not all of you want your face peeled off on the day of love…maybe just half of you? No? Well if you don’t, you’re probably searching high and low for gifts (and making your own list too). So without further ado, I bring to you Etsy Stalkers’ 2015 Top 10 Must-Haves For Valentine’s Day:

 For the fiery little girl in your world:

toddler dress, valentines day, etsy valentines, retro ribbon dress, etsy blog, etsystalkers.com

Retro Ribbin and lace Red heart dress | $46










For your naked, yearning neck:

udith Ripka "Linen" Silver Twin Heart Necklace, etsy blog, etsystalkers.com, valentine's day

Judith Ripka “Linen” Silver Twin Heart Necklace | $250








For the post-it note organizer in your life (OMG…love me a new pack of post-it notes):  

oh dier living etsy, sticky note organizer, desktop organizer, desk caddy, pen holder, etsy blog, etsystalkers.com

Makin it Rain Sticky Note Organizier | $20









For your puppy-lovin’, chocolate-eatin’ kids:

Puppy Love Valentine's Day Basket, Art of Appreciation Gift Baskets, etsy blog, etsystalkers.com

Puppy Love Valentine’s Day Basket | $49









 For the highly-caffeinated love in your life:

happiness in a cup etsy, etsy blog, etsystalkers.com, Handpainted Valentines Day gift, mug, Heart mug

Hand-painted Heart Mug | $14










For your main hunk (or sports loving lady):

art by sarah rice, etsy blog, etsystalkers.com, football art, touch down

Original Framed Art | $45








For those that like it hot and personalized:

sora designs etsy, Personalized jewelry, Valentines gift anniversary date initial necklace , bridal necklace Heart jewelry bridal locket mother day gift

Personalized Love Locket | $25










For those that like it cold and covered:

Nirvanna Designs SC07 Flower Crochet Multi Color Scarf, amazon.com, etsystalkers.com, etsy blog

Flower Crochet Multi Color Scarf | $36









For the purse loverrrrrr in your life (AKA everyone, ever):

Little Bright Studio etsy, Waxed Canvas Bag, etsy blog, etsystalkers.com

Waxed Canvas Bag |$145








For those of you out on the prowl this Valentine’s Day…call me (rawwwrrrr):

iPhone 6 Case, etsy blog, etsystalkers.com, ESR the Beat Series Protective Case

Adorable iPhone 6 Case | $9.99

It’s been a while…

I could spit out every excuse in the book about why I haven’t been blogging but here’s the truth (dramatic pause)…I just haven’t felt like it.

Call it lazy. Call it the holidays. Call it having two kids, a job, husband, cat, dog, etc. But I’m back.  Hey, I got to keep you on your toes somehow in 2015. Since it’s been a while I thought I’d catch you up on what’s been going on:

etsy blog, etsystalkers.com, bus driver gift, bus driver, bella cuttery

…or in my case, two more stops.


(1) I found out what happens when you don’t make it to the bus stop on time after school. FYI: The driver takes them back to school and the mom (ahem) has to take the walk of shame into the school to get them. AWKWARD.






2) My kids drew this picture of my butt.  Favorite quote from my friend, “At least it looks firm.” True ‘dat.


(3) Even though I’m in advertising, my kids are the biggest suckers for it. Seriously, over winter break they asked for every. Single. Thing. On. TV. Hideaway Pets, Hover Ball , Bright Light Pillow…the list goes on and on. Personally I blame it on their grandfather who has been known to order a thing or two (everything from every Infomercial ever). I mean really, no one needs a flashlight that you have to wind up… yet every single person in the family has received one.

(4) Here’s a deep thought I had while traveling: Why does everyone suddenly get narcolepsy once they’re on a plane? Do you normally fall asleep at 11AM if you weren’t on an airplane? I didn’t think so.

(5) A 2-year-old looked me up and down in Target and shouted, “Ewwwwww.” This is a true story people. Kid, I see your parents pushing your cart around and they’re no super models themselves. Ewwww yourself.

So when will I write again? To be continued…


Our Yearly Trip To THE NUTCRACKER Rocked.

atlantaballet nutcracker_header-1418074713840668652 The Fox Theatre in Atlanta was AMAZING enough to send tickets for my family to attend this year’s Nutcracker show. It’s actually become a tradition for us, being our third year attending with the kids. At first we were nervous if it would hold their attention but they LOVE it again and again every year. And they also love getting to pick out a different nutcracker to add to their collection after the show.


Here are my highlights in no particular order:

  • The lambs shaking their booties. I love a good lamb booty.
  • My daughter asking me over and over when the lady in the big dress with kids hiding in it was coming on stage (I love that she remembered this scene from last year).
  • The snow falling on our heads at the end of Act I.
  • The Sugar Plum Fairy.
  • Looking up at the amazing stars in a night sky at The Fox Theatre.


Get Social
Connect social media this Nutcracker season and make sure you use #NutcrackerATL whenever you post about the show!


Did you know?

  • Atlanta Ballet premiered George Balanchine’s Nutcracker – second act only – in April of 1959, not December, making it one of the first companies in the U.S. to perform what would soon become a holiday classic.
  • More than 8 tons of scenery, lighting, and props are used in each Nutcracker production
  • 300,000 watts of electricity are used during each performance of Nutcracker, more than enough to light a stadium
  • The (Dr.) Evil Rat King is 8 feet tall
  • The Petrov Christmas tree grows from 13 feet to 38 feet tall, equivalent to a three-story building


Did you know?

  • There are 20 pounds of snow during used each performance.
  • Atlanta Ballet’s female dancers wear out more than 2,000 pairs of Pointe Shoes each season.
  • Mother Matrushka is always played by a man.
  • More than 2,000 hours are needed to prepare the costumes for opening night of
  • Nutcracker. Preparation begins in early August and goes through November to ensure every detail is in place for opening night in early December.