Collection Pig Replaces Collection Plate This Thanksgiving

November 20, 2012 at 10:23 pm | Posted in My Pig Collection, Pig News, Pigs with Other Animals | Leave a comment
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Giant glass “Collection Pig”

Yes, Thanksgiving is a fine time to count your blessings, single out those you are thankful for, and stuff your face. But it can also be a prime time to help those less fortunate than  yourself.

So this year, as I play co-host to my very first Thanksgiving in our new home, I’m inviting a special guest to the table; a giant glass “Collection Pig” that my friend Danielle gave me many years ago. (I knew its purpose would eventually become clear to me!)

Between our afternoon feast and the post-Thanksgiving-meal party we have planned, our guests will have an opportunity to donate what they can to the Collection Pig.

All proceeds will go to two local organizations in NYC doing great work to assist victims of Hurricane Sandy;  Red Hook Initiative  and Reaching-Out Community Service.

Both organizations come highly recommended by my friend Ruby in Brooklyn who has been volunteering and raising $ on her own to help those impacted by Sandy. (You can read more about her efforts and how she raised thousands on her own from friends all over the world here.)

Here’s what Ruby had to say about these organizations:

Red Hook Initiative  and Reaching-Out Community Service are two organizations that I absolutely trust to do the right thing. They were already servicing the communities that were affected by Sandy so they know who needs what and are there for the duration!

So moving forward, here’s what I’m hoping will happen:

1. Our Collection Pig raises a decent amount of $ on Thanksgiving to help victims of Sandy;

2. That after reading this, you will choose a cause that speaks to you and do the same thing at your Thanksgiving feast. If you don’t have a giant glass pig, let your creative juices flow. It could be a collection ice-bucket, teapot, flower pot, etc.

3. That people reading this will share this idea with THEIR friends, because obviously, the more the merrier!

We may not be able to raise thousands like Ruby, but when lots of people give a little, great things can happen.

Thanksgiving in the US has long been associated with over-indulgence, but who says having a full stomach precludes you from having a full heart?

If you’d like to contribute to one of the organizations doing Sandy relief work, here are links to their online donation pages:

P.S. For Pig Lovers Eyes Only: (Since this is a Pig Lovers blog, I want to take a moment to address my fellow pig lovers): I love pigs in part because they are compassionate, smart, loyal creatures, like the piglet who instinctively dove in to save a stuck goat from drowning. That’s how pigs role. Let’s spring into action and help those who need us most. Happy Thanksgiving!

Pig Collectors Beware!

June 14, 2012 at 8:34 am | Posted in My Pig Collection, Pig News | 4 Comments
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My new pig planter, purchased at antique mall in Monterey, CA

Why the cautionary headline? Because if you’re like me, you can’t stop buying pig things (exhibit A to the left, a pig planter I just bought), so when I learned about the new “Pig collectibles and antiques” category of online shopping destination Collectors Weekly, I was excited but wary.

Hunter from Collectors Weekly describes the site as “an online resource where you can get info on specific collectibles, upload your own finds, or shop our best of eBay listings. The site expanded to include an entire family of animal categories, including a section all about pig collectibles and antiques.”

Hunter asked me to “have a look, share with other porcine enthusiasts, and let us know if you have any questions.”

So I had a look, and here’s what I think:

Sure, it’s fun to go to a website where just what you are looking for is all in one place. That’s what this has; it’s got all the pig items penned into one category. Of course, I could just go to ebay and enter “pig antique” in the search box and voila, I’ve got one page with all antique pigs I can handle (and one less hour in my day!) But this site offers more beyond the product listings, and that’s what makes it worth stopping by. To be specific…

  • “Fresh Type” is a section touted as the website’s “Latest news and reporting.” On the pig page, I found a great Muppets article there called Before Sesame Street and Electric Mayhem, a Crude Kermit Lip Synced Pop Standards. If you scroll towards the bottom of it, there’s a big payoff with the image of a Swarovski-studded Miss Piggy minaudiere designed by jeweler to the stars, Kathrine Baumann.
  • Show & Tell – Share Your Stuff! This section is money! People post their antique pig scores, and others leave comments and/or “like” the posts. You can also post your own. You have to create an account to do either. This section has great potential, especially being able to find out about your pig purchases, but I’d like to see more people commenting to make this section pop.

So thanks Hunter for letting me know about your new Pig Category, and Pig Lovers, check it out and let us know what you think about it.

I Found My Kermit!

June 11, 2012 at 4:15 am | Posted in My Pig Collection | 4 Comments
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Hello fellow Pig Lovers,

I have not blogged in a long, long time, but I’ve been meaning to:)

I know you can relate to that. We’ve all got things we’ve been meaning to do, right? I figure, we do what we do when we do it. Why be hard on ourselves?!

Since I last blogged, 2 major things happened in my life:

1. I bought my first house. Oh boy, that was a roller coaster of a ride, but I made it through and now have a home to call my own with plenty of room for my pig collection.

2. I got engaged. I’ve been with my boyfriend, er, fiancee (ha!) Chris for almost 5 years and during a weekend getaway to Carmel, CA he popped the question. It was ridiculously romantic; we were standing in the crashing waves, he told me he loved me and that he wanted to spend the rest of his life with me, and then he said these words, which still cracks me up:

“It’s time to lock this shit down.”

Of course I said yes.

For many, that wouldn’t be a very romantic thing to hear at that particular point, but for me, it was perfect. And that’s what makes him perfect for me. We get each other. What more could you ask for?

Since I’m sharing this news on my Pig Lovers blog, I suppose I should tie this into pigs somehow. Well, here goes:

Suzette and Wilbur enjoying play date

A few days ago my dog Wilbur and I met up with our friend Danielle and her ridiculously adorable daughter Suzette for a little play date by the Bay. Danielle gave me a belated birthday gift, a charming ceramic pig. Later that afternoon, the new pig addition was on my dining room table amongst the clutter; a vase with fresh-cut flowers, some planters, a notebook, an old toy car discovered under the flooring of our new house, a laptop and other random items.

Ceramic white birthday pig peeking out from the mess that is my dining room table

Chris comes home, and within seconds, walks into the kitchen, peers into the dining room, and says to me, “what’s that?” pointing to the white ceramic pig.

Me: “My new pig. Danielle gave it to me.”

Chris: “I think I’ve inherited your pig radar.”

(Pig radar is what I use to describe my sixth sense that enables me to locate pig items in close proximity any time, any where.)

Yep, I’ve found the man for me!

Do you have pig radar?

A Gesture of Kindness Leads to Pig Sanctuary Discovery

July 14, 2011 at 11:59 pm | Posted in My Pig Collection, Pig Rescue Organizations | 2 Comments
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Ironwood Pig Sanctuary card

Yesterday my work pal Drea walked up to my desk and handed me an envelope.

No, there was no cash in it. (We work at a non-profit!)

It was a pig card that she bought at a shop in Phoenix, AZ called Blueberry Deluxe Boutique where she sells some of her handmade accessories.

The card inside read: “Hey Tex-I couldn’t resist thinking of you when I saw this :)”

Do I work with swell people or what?!

I love my new card. On the back is a cute little pig drawing with the words “Ironwood Pig Santuary” so of course, I had to investigate, and boy am I glad I did!

Thanks to Drea’s good deed, I discovered Ironwood Pig Sanctuary, a wonderful place located in Arizona that “provides shelter and care for unwanted and abused pot bellied pigs.”

Their website is great, filled with helpful information about pot bellied pigs,plus what the non-profit organization does, volunteering and visiting opportunities and a whole lot more. The only thing I didn’t see was a place to purchase their cute cards online. Oh well, perhaps in the future.

If you want to learn more about this pig sanctuary, check out their video below. My favorite part is when co-founder Mary lays down the important law: “There is no such thing as a teacup pig.” You said it Mary!

I may be crossing the country later this summer. Who knows, perhaps I’ll stop by Ironwood for a visit. Thanks Drea for your random act of kindness, and Ironwood Pig Sanctuary co-founders Ben and Mary for all you do!

If you’d like to support Ironwood Pig Sanctuary, good for you! Just click here you awesome person!

Piggy Bank Goes Wee Wee Wee, All the Way to Plane Crash

July 11, 2011 at 5:12 am | Posted in My Pig Collection, Pig Gift Ideas | 1 Comment
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Piggybank maker proudly showcasing his wares

Last weekend on the way to Sausalito for what turned out to be quite the adventure across the bay, I happened by a stand of piggy banks amongst the artisan street vendors across from the SF ferry building. After chatting with the bank maker, I bought one. Granted, it was my boyfriend Chris’s birthday, not mine, so buying myself a lil something did feel a bit…gauche, but the surprises I had in store for the birthday boy kept would-be pangs of guilt from emerging. And well, you know how it is. This little piggy bank really spoke to me:)

My new piggy bank

The bank was handmade by JONOVAN, sort of a grown-up version of paper mache, with thoughtfully placed funny pages decorating the outer shell of my new coin collector. And as a cute little touch, each JONOVAN bank comes with a (lucky?) penny in it.

If you want one of your own, simply email Don3Jon@aol.com or call 415-863-9384.

So what’s this you read about a plane crash? Well, after my spontaneous purchase, we hopped a ferry to Sausalito where a vintage 1908 tugboat awaited us. Part of the birthday surprise was that we would be bunking on a posh little tugboat overnight, after cruising Richardson Bay with captain David for a champagne sunset cruise.

Chris and I in front of the little tugboat that could

What I didn’t plan on was witnessing a small plane crash before our very eyes, or helping David and Chris pluck the plane pilot out of the cold bay as his airplane sunk, or having my photo of the plane end up on ABC. You can watch the whole story as told through pictures here.

What is the moral of this story? I have no idea. But I have a new piggy bank and my boyfriend got to feel like a hero on his birthday. All in all, a happy ending.

A Pig Stand-in Covers for Birthday Girl

June 11, 2011 at 11:07 pm | Posted in My Pig Collection, Pig Gift Ideas | Leave a comment
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Global Exchange staff with banana bread and pigs

I turned 41 a few Thursdays ago. I work for a human rights organization called Global Exchange on Mondays, Tuesday and Wednesdays so on my birthday, I was elsewhere. Well, in my absence, my co-workers celebrated my birthday, sans moi.

They huddled around homemade banana bread with a candle on it (and bourbon, my fave, in it!) and used a little pig they borrowed from my desk to stand in for me (plus a pig pitcher also grabbed from my desk.) A video of the occasion showed up on my Facebook page that very same day, with the description “Global Exchange sings Happy Birthday Tex, featuring a candle-blowing pig (or two) in the role of Tex Dworkin.”

The mastermind behind this thoughtful act was my good pal Bergen. I’ve worked (and drank) with him on and off for years. What a peach. The next Monday I came into work and saw the email he sent out that started this plan into motion:

OK, so I just learned Tex isn’t here on Thursdays, but it IS her birthday, and she IS maybe my favorite person I’ve ever worked on a really, really hard project with (we built the gx online store together when we were kids)… SO……

I made banana bread with Jim Beam sauce and am putting birthday candles on it and am going to blow them out myself in the front of the office while drinking too much coffee. I have no idea if it tastes any good, but come’n’get it!
Love you Tex!
– in your absence, Bergen

I’m sharing this with you because it was such a thoughtful act, I felt I needed to tell someone. Thoughtful acts can really make someone’s day. On May 19th, my co-workers made mine. Thanks GXers, you’re all a bunch of peaches. Juicy, sweet peaches.

Miss Piggy & Kermit Longest Celebrity Romance

March 17, 2010 at 12:41 am | Posted in My Pig Collection, Pig News, Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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According to ROFLRAZZI blog, Kermit and Miss Piggy are officially the longest lived celebrity couple. Not bad considering over half of marriages end in divorce in the U.S.

In other news, my best friend Scotty J, accomplished rock poster artist, just did a screen-printed poster for the Muppet Movie showing at renowned San Francisco movie house The Red Vic. The poster kicks ass. My first instinct was to buy the whole lot of posters and wallpaper my entire cottage with them, but instead, I’m going to do the mature thing and have one framed, then place it prominently on my living room wall.

Check it out; you can purchase your very own from Scotty J’s website, while they last. (He only printed 100, and each one is signed and numbered.)

Have you seen the wedding of Kermit and Miss Piggy? What a hoot:

How Well Do My Friends and Family Follow Directions?

March 15, 2010 at 10:45 pm | Posted in My Pig Collection, Pig Gift Ideas | 4 Comments
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In 2009 I created my first Online Pig Gift Guide. It was a joy to put together, because it helped me absorb the sensational pig finds, without actually having to own them, thus keeping the chaos of clutter at bay. An excerpt from the guide stipulated:

Despite constantly reminding friends and loved ones that I am not actively seeking to add to my overly abundant pig collection, I receive numerous pig related gifts each holiday. The caveat I’ve placed on receiving pig gifts is this: if it has a practical use or is a vintage find with lots of character, I’m willing to make exceptions:)

So did friends and family adhere to the aforementioned ground rules? As my pig blog readership grows (to a whopping 10 people and counting) I figured you, my loyal readers, deserved to know. So here goes:

During the 2009 holiday season I received the following items from friends and family:

  1. 1 Pig Hat, wool with fleece lining (that’s me above sporting it; I can relate to The Christmas Story scene when the kid wears the bunny suit)
  2. 1 Pig Steamer that fits on top of pots to let steam out (through the 2 pig nostrils, of course)
  3. Porkchops (they’re punny chopsticks with pigs on them)
  4. A pig t-shirt (extra points for organic cotton and local artist-designed)
  5. Pig Cutting Board (made of a sustainable wood = a definite plus)
  6. A Vintage Pig Figurine (love it!)
  7. A farmer pig decorative item from a local second-hand shop (2nd hand shop items=cool, less crap being added to the world)
  8. A pig ice-cream scooper (my second one, shhh!)
  9. A pig umbrella (garners much attention on the streets of San Francisco)
  10. Reusable pig shopping tote bag (I use this bag almost every day when I go to the produce market)
  11. Book The Whole Hog: Exploring the Extraordinary Potential of Pigs by Lyall Watson. This was actually his last published book, according to Wikipedia. R.I.P. Lyall!

Did these gifts meet the criteria set forth in the original blog post? You be the judge.

Do you see now why I have more pigs in my life than I know what to do with? I’m almost 40. That’s 40 birthdays, 40 holidays, and 40 National Pig Days x 11 pig gifts. You do the math.

The word gluttonous comes to mind. Pigs are not gluttonous, G-d no. I’m talking about myself. One definition of gluttonous: greedy; insatiable.

Ahhh, yes. Insatiable. That is the word I would use to describe my pig habit. No quantity of socially responsible-made pig products and vintage finds will fill me up. It’s an appetite that never goes away.


Happy Thankspigging

November 26, 2009 at 7:18 am | Posted in My Pig Collection, Pig Gift Ideas, Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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It’s Thankspigging time, and I’m giving thanks for 4 things that made me smile this year. Oh, and I promise, no more puns.

1) I love Queen + I love the Muppets = I LOVE this video!          

2009 Fair Trade Calendar

2) This year I volunteered to help put together the first annual Fair Trade calendar. 100% of proceeds benefit the Fair Trade Federation and Fair Trade Resource Network, two great organizations working hard to promote Fair Trade and educate consumers about the importance of ethical shopping. Thousands of copies are now on sale nationwide.

The best part? Since I dedicated so much of my own time to this project, I felt justified in sneaking my favorite holiday in; National Pig Day March 1st. (It’s also my Mom’s birthday.)

3) Despite some pretty serious close calls this year, my dog Henry is alive at 15. Here he is resting comfortably on my homemade pig & cow quilt given to me by KCBS anchorwoman Rebecca Corral.

Henry rests comfortably on pig quilt.

4) I bought a certain someone his first piggy bank this year. Welcome to the world, Henry Shaw Gelbach!

Happy Thankspigging everyone!!!

My Green Eyed Pig

August 22, 2009 at 11:16 pm | Posted in My Pig Collection, Uncategorized | Leave a comment
In the morning with my Green Eyed Pig

In the morning with my Green Eyed Pig

Check out the newest addition to my pig collection. It’s a handmade crocheted pig I found on Etsy. It’s really well made and full of character. The maker? Marie Segares, Proprietress of The Underground Crafter. She’s been crocheting for 25 years!

Marie is a Craft Yarn Council of America Certified Crochet Instructor and Certified Crochet Teacher.  She specializes in teaching individual and small group crochet classes for beginner and intermediate students.  So if you’re in the New York City area and want to learn how to crochet, well, you know where to look!

In addition to teaching, Marie makes handmade items like my green eyed pig and sells them on Etsy. She also does special orders on commission.

I’m a huge fan of handmade items, and it’s always nice to find people making a living doing what they love. Go Marie! If you or anyone you know is a handmade entrepreneur, check out my other blog DoGoodBiz.com, a place for fans of socially responsible business to learn and get inspired.

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