Archive for May, 2008

Yesterday Butterfly drove to western Massachusetts. First stop was the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art. This is a lovely small museum with two galleries of original artwork from picture books, a large space for children and adults to make art, and a well stocked gift shop. Here is Butterfly in the art room:

Next, Butterfly visited the Dr. Seuss Memorial Brass Sculpture garden in Springfield Massachusetts. These oversize sculptures are so much fun to view and relive the messages of Dr. Suess. Here she sits on the stump with the Lorax who says “I speak for the trees, for the trees have no tongues.”

Today, Butterfly went to a rocky beach near Marion Massachusetts known as Planting Island. It was low tide and barnacle and snail encrusted rocks were exposed:

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We are on a family vacation in Massachusetts this week. (Baying Hound operations are under the careful watch of Megan, my sister). To share the fun with you and give us something to take pictures of other than our daughter, we thought we’d write regular updates with pictures of my butterfly dreams bottle.

Yesterday Butterfly flew United from Columbus to Chicago, then Chicago to Providence Rhode Island. She made it through security and was filled with water fountains numerous times through the trip. She then took a ride in the car to Marion Massachusetts and rested overnight.

Today, Butterfly went to the beach.
She hung out with her friend, Black Oval with Cup.

Later they visited the LLBean outlet and overheard people talking about BPA. They didn’t fall for any of those super clearance plastic bottles!

It was a great day in the sun!

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MySIGG.com, the storefront for the US distributor of SIGG bottles has suspended sales of SIGGs so that all inventory can be diverted to smaller retailers like Baying Hound. The demand is huge and our orders have increased dramatically since MySIGG made the announcement and linked to retailers. We’re pleased to be working with such a supportive company.

In other SIGG news, we spoke with a SIGG rep today to place another order. We’ll do yet another one next week to keep replenishing our stock.

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We encourage you to read this draft brief of the US Toxicology Program report on BPA.

It is a synthesis of many studies about BPA. In sum, the Toxicology Program is leaning towards the conclusion that BPA is undeniably present in humans and the effects of BPA exposure are not desirable. This report makes no recommendations for consumers but does recommend further study by US scientific bodies.

We aren’t in the fear mongering business at Baying Hound. But if you are thinking about making the switch from plastic to non-BPA containers, we are happy to supply you with alternatives. We have SIGG aluminum bottles and boxes (a great bento alternative!), Guyot Designs silicone bowls and utensils, and Klean Kanteen stainless steel bottles arriving soon.

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We received two small shipments of stock from SIGG and Guyot today. We now have the Schaereschnitt 0.6L bottle and a selection of boxes from SIGG. Guyot sent the slate and tomato (aka scarlet and grey – Go Bucks!) travel shots too. No stock photos of these, so I guess I’m taking pictures this afternoon. šŸ™‚

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We are out of stock of a lot of SIGG styles. I am hoping to get a new order in tomorrow for whatever is coming in the next shipment. It’s frustrating to have customers chomping at the bit to order something we don’t have a the moment…

Last night, Yahoo Stores added insult to injury by having a screwy outage that temporarily opened up all our stock as available for order. So I woke up this morning to a slew of orders (yeah!) for things we don’t have (boo!). I appreciate how patient our customers are in waiting, refunding or changing their orders.

I guess this just exemplifies why we need to diversify our lines and carry more stock – so that a shortage in one product doesn’t leave us in such a situation.

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Customers are asking for stainless steel bottles and we are doing our best to respond. We placed an order with Klean Kanteen in early May that should arrive soon. The Klean Kanteen Kolor selection will come in July.

Guyot Designs will ship their stainless steel wide mouth bottles in August. The advantage of these bottles is that they fit all the wide mouth (aka Nalgene) accessories, like water filters.

These vendors, like SIGG, are experiencing incredible demand because of the news about BPA. We are also running out of stock. If at any time you want ‘dibs’ on a bottle not in stock, just email Rachel to be put on a waiting list.

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This week is national bike to work week. This event was created in order to promote cycling as a viable method of commuting. I’ve personally been riding to work (20-22 miles round trip) for almost two years now. I find that biking keeps me in shape and promotes a healthy outlook on life. In addition, our family is able to live using only one car as I don’t need a car for my commute. So, what are the advantages of cycle commuting?

1. Health benefits – It is widely recognized that aerobic activity promotes good heart health and can help to lower blood pressure. In addition, I find that burning 4500-6000 additional calories a week keeps the weight down and allows me to eat a wider diversity (read: unhealthier) range of foods than I might otherwise be able to. Also, I find that I don’t get sick with common illnesses nearly as often as I would previously.

2. Financial savings – We all know how fuel prices have sky-rocketed over the past couple of years. Biking removes the fuel cost from your financial equation. These days, fuel estimates range from $1000-$5000/year depending on the car you drive and the distance traveled in your commute. Also, you potentially save the cost of a car payment, vehicle registration and auto insurance prices. Again, estimates of savings will be based on your individual car and driving needs, but you will save thousands a year by biking to work.

3. Environmental benefits – One less car on the road leads to lower greenhouse gases emitted. Not only are you saving emissions due to operation, you are potentially saving all the intangible impacts caused by owning/purchasing a car. This includes emission caused by material production and during the assembly of the vehicle itself. You also save any transportation cost for material and final product ultimately reaching a point of sale.

4. Social benefits – When biking you are not enclosed in a steel cage. You tend to interact much more with the people around you than you would while driving a car. Biking also reduces noise pollution and general congestion on the roadways; thus making the experience much more pleasant for all concerned. I also find the commute by bike may be somewhat strenuous, but it is a very relaxing way to start and end the day.

Unfortunately bike commuting is not for everyone. Some people have prohibitively long commutes and some people simply have no good or safe way to travel by road to work by bike. Others may have health problems that prevent bike riding. As a potential solution, much public transportation all over the country/world is introducing accommodations for bike travel. As an example, I know that bike can be taken onto many of the public transit systems in the Boston area. The advantage is that you may be able to get in a partial commute even if you can’t travel the full distance from your house. Also, if you live in a cool city like Paris, France you have access to programs similar to VeLib.

If bike commuting still seems daunting to you as far as riding on the roadways or distance traveled are concerned, contact your elected officials and voice your problems. Many cities are looking hard at improving the accommodations laid out for bicycle transportation. With enough public pressure and fuel prices as they are, many of these alternatives are seeming more and more attractive.

As a final note, Rachel, the President of Baying Hound Ltd., will be biking on business errands all week. Today she went delivered 12 packages to the post office by bike. If you order from us this week, chances are the package will get to you at least partially by bicycle.

Happy biking and feel free to drop me a line
if you want advice on biking to work.

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Our (tiny) web venture began with the resale of military surplus helmets. Our most successful product in this vein are our in-house (and by that I mean, in our actual basement) made upgrade kits of a chinstrap and new padding to replace the uncomfortable military issue suspension.

We decided last fall to stop selling the upgrade kits through our current webstore because mixing surplus and new products in two different categories didn’t make sense to our customers, and may have even turned people away.

We continued selling the surplus items and kits through our ebay store.

Ebay is now charging upwards of 12% to sell in their stores and they made changes in feedback that took away our ability to honestly leave feedback. This doesn’t match with our financial or business philosophy.

We have enough of a reputation that we hope to drive customers to a new site instead where we have better profits, better deals, and more transparency to our customers. This morning I registered http://www.helmetupgrades.com and will have a site up in a few days. I’m publishing new business cards with the new address too – maybe Alex can be president of this spin off. šŸ˜‰

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We’re working on a new order for Klean Kanteen stainless bottles and Ibex wool fall line. If there’s something special you want, contact us soon!

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