tsoana ceramics giveaway!

It’s been a really exciting time in these first few months getting the business officially up and running.  There are three things I know for certain:

  1. It is a lot of work to run a small business!  From the paperwork and record keeping to production and connecting with stores and potential customers, there is always something that needs to be done.
  2. It is insanely satisfying!  I feel like I’m finally doing what I’ve been wanting to do for so long, and it feels really, really good.
  3. Most importantly, I couldn’t do any of this without you, my beautiful tsoana friends, followers, and customers.  You all are amazing.

To truly thank you, I am hosting the first tsoana giveaway.  We are giving away one of our most popular designs:  a beautiful bee mug!

Due to the platform I’m using, you’ll need to visit this link to enter the giveaway.  Best of luck!

bee

(Note:  the giveaway mug is similar to this mug, but is not this exact one.  Due to the handmade nature of our items, there will be slight variations in shape and color.  This makes the end product unique and more beautiful.  Thanks!)

and we’re off!

Well, things are definitely getting a bit hectic around here for the tsoana gang.  Okay, let’s face it, the ‘tsoana gang’ is really just me and my supportive fiance, but that’s alright.  I’m okay with that!

all good pizza

We just had our first market (!!) on Sunday, and it went very well.  It was so nice to meet our customers face-to-face, tell folks about the processes I use to make my pieces, and send pieces off to their new homes.

I wish for each person to find a little love and happiness when they use their new pieces in their homes.

We have a lot more coming up soon.  From markets and new lines, to pieces stocked in local stores, it’s all coming, and we’ll keep you up-to-date!

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Make sure to follow along by joining our mailing list or following us on bloglovin’.

You can also check out our online store if you aren’t local or can’t make it to a market.

We love you and are so grateful that you’re following along!

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a little about our logo.

We love that you’re following along our journey as we grow and learn (and make mistakes…always some mistakes!).

We previously posted about our name tsoana, which means sameness.  If you missed that post, click back and give it a read!

After that post, we got many questions about how our logo relates to this idea of tsoana.

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First, we wanted a simple logo.  Nothing complicated or distracting.  After drawing out several ideas, we landed on this one for its simplicity and meaning.

Tsoana means sameness, but we know that there are so many beautiful differences in people.  There is also so much that is the same.  The triangles are descending and filtering down from the top (most unique) to the single point that makes everything the same: living, breathing beings.  We are alive.  We are the same.  We have joy.  We have love.

Kao Fela Rea Tsoana.  We are all the same.  If we filter down to the most granular, we can see it.  Through the complications and differences, we can unite together in love and create anything we envision.

what’s in a name?

tsoana.  It’s a simple word that has a lot of meaning for me.

but it’s Possible you haven’t heard of it before (and perhaps haven’t heard about its country of origin either!).

Several years ago, I had an incredible opportunity to travel to the Kingdom of Lesotho, a mountain kingdom completely surrounded by the country of South Africa.

Me, on Thaba-Bosiu, taking it all in. Below is the Qiloane Mountain. Many say that the shape of the mountain is the origin of the iconic Basotho hat.

Me, on Thaba-Bosiu, taking it all in. Below is the Qiloane Mountain. Many say that the shape of the mountain is the origin of the iconic Basotho hat.

One of my former professors had done the Peace Corps and was stationed in Lesotho, and he often brought small groups of students back to the country he called home for two years.  During our time there, we lived in a small village and spent our days building community centers and orphanages, assisting in an HIV clinic, building playgrounds, and creating and planting garden plots.  Throughout each of the projects we worked on, we were not alone.  We worked side-by-side with the Basotho people.  We worked hard, we shared stories, we laughed, we cried.  All together.  Life in Lesotho is hard, but the people are inspiring and full of life.  They know what it means to share, to love, and to be in community.

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Lots of work to be done!

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A woman in the village of Roma stands by her home.

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An orphanage we painted after building a new playground.

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Seed beds we dug and planted.

Small helpers coming over to the site of the new community center/orphanage.

Small helpers coming over to the site of the new community center/orphanage.

Throughout the trip, one phrase kept coming up during discussions and interactions with the Basotho people around us.  That phrase was this:

Kao Fela Rea Tsoana.  We are all the Same.

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Kao Fela Rea Tsoana. We Are All the Same.

This has resonated with me ever since.  Whenever I’m upset or frustrated, happy or elated, I realize that we all share in our experiences.  My happiness is your happiness, and vice versa.  We live in this together.  We truly are one.

I took the final part of the phrase, and hold it close to my heart.  It translates to ‘sameness’ on its own.

I know some people may simply read this and think, ‘Look how naive she is.  She thinks we are all the same.’  Quite the contrary.  What’s beautiful is that we are all the same in so many ways, including that we are all different (confusing, right?).  Our uniqueness is just as incredible as the fact that we all have the same color blood running through our veins, we breathe the same air, see the same stars and moon, and can feel the same heat on our face from the shining sun.

Amazing.  We all have a sameness, and that’s what this is all about.

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One of the most beautiful places.

Soon, you can check out my ‘Through the Lens’ tab for more glimpses at my Lesotho trip and other adventures.  And if you’re feeling adventurous yourself, go visit Lesotho!  You won’t be disappointed.

Finally, if you’re feeling generous, SOS Children’s Villages, is a great organization for donations to this beautiful kingdom in the sky.

Walking softly and xox,

Leah