Saturday, February 28, 2009


I feel like a truck ran over me.  Last week we went to Disney World during our Mardi Gras break.   It was very crowded and people were hacking and coughing all over the place.  I seemed to have picked up an unwanted souvenir from the trip.  I can't catch my breath and am running a fever.  I am truly pitiful.  I hope to be up and running as soon as I can.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Amazing Artisan- Julian Beever (the Sidewalk Chalk Guy)

This week's Amazing Artisan is Julian Beever. His is also known as the Sidewalk Chalk Guy. To look at his work leaves one in awe. His pieces seem to jump off of the pavement. At first glance, it is hard to believe it is all done in chalk. I find myself staring at them to see all of the little nuances he puts in his drawings. To see his work, go to Julian Beever's Pavement Drawings. You will be amazed as well.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Amazing Artisan- Janice Abarbanel

This week's Amazing Artisan is Janice Abarbanel. She does incredible work with polymer clay. The colors and patterns she creates in clay are a wonder. I have never worked in polymer clay, except to piddle around helping the girls with small projects for school or just for fun. I look through her Etsy shop, Naftali, and say to myself "I like this one and this one..." I love them all. It would be difficult to choose. The jewelry she makes is very lovely and original. They are definitely conversation pieces. Janice also has a blog, Exploring the Art of Polymer Clay. Go, take a look, and be prepared to spend some time looking at all of her pieces. You will fall in love too.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

I Got Tagged!

I got tagged by MamasLittleMonkeys! And... the rules are to tell 7 things about yourself and then tag 7 others.

1. I would live in New York City, if I had enough money to not live in a tiny apartment.

2. I collect elephants. I received my first one, a planter, when I was born.

3. I was a Girl Scout leader for 10 years.

4. I love to watch the Olympics and went to the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City.

5. When I was skin tested for allergies, I tested positive for all of the allergens except chocolate.

6. I love to dip my french fries in mayonaise.

7. I love to collect recipes and cookbooks, but I always tend to make the same things over and over.

Now for 7 lovely ladies
1. Jewelry by Lisa Raspino
2. nfall2rt designstudio
3. You've Got Maille
4. Rose Works Jewelry
5. DebiDeauxDesigns
6. Cottage Garden Therapies
7. Accent Envy

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Sunday's Meme- 100 Things You Have Done

Someone sent me this list a couple of months ago and it was fun to go through the list to see what I have and have not done.  You are supposed to put the things you have done in Bold letters.  Going through the list brought back some good memories.

100 Things You Have Done

1. Started my own blog (3 actually) 
2. Slept under the stars (Girl Scouts)
3. Played in a band
4. Visited Hawaii
5. Watched a meteor shower
6. Given more than I can afford to charity (We give often, just not more than we can afford)
7. Been to Disneyland/World
8. Climbed a mountain
9. Held a praying mantis (yuck)
10. Sung a solo (does in the car count ?)
11. Bungee jumped (I don't think so!)
12. Visited Paris
13. Watched lightning at sea
14. Taught myself an art from scratch
15. Adopted a child
16. Had food poisoning (see #7)
17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty
18. Grown my own vegetables
19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France
20. Slept on an overnight train
21. Had a pillow fight
22. Hitchhiked
23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill
24. Built a snow fort
25. Held a lamb
26. Gone skinny dipping
27. Run a Marathon
28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice
29. Seen a total eclipse
30. Watched a sunrise or sunset
31. Hit a home run
32. Been on a cruise
33. Seen Niagara Falls in person
34. Visited the birthplace of my ancestors
35. Seen an Amish community
36. Taught myself a new language
37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied
38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
39. Gone rock climbing
40. Seen Michelangelo’s David
41. Sung karaoke (and badly I must say)
42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant
44. Visited Africa
45. Walked on a beach by moonlight
46. Been transported in an ambulance
47. Had my portrait painted
48. Gone deep sea fishing
49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person
50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling
52. Kissed in the rain
53. Played in the mud
54. Gone to a drive-in theater
55. Been in a movie
56. Visited the Great Wall of China
57. Started a business
58. Taken a martial arts class
59. Visited Russia
60. Served at a soup kitchen
61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies
62. Gone whale watching
63. Got flowers for no reason
64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma
65. Gone sky diving
66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp
67. Bounced a check
68. Flown in a helicopter
69. Saved a favorite childhood toy
70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial
71. Eaten caviar
72. Pieced a quilt
73. Stood in Times Square
74. Toured the Everglades
75. Been fired from a job
76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London
77. Broken a bone
78. Been on a speeding motorcycle
79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person (have only flown over)
80. Published a book
81. Visited the Vatican
82. Bought a brand new car
83. Walked in Jerusalem
84. Had my picture in the newspaper
85. Read the entire Bible
86. Visited the White House
87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
88. Had chickenpox
89. Saved someone’s life
90. Sat on a jury
91. Met someone famous
92. Joined a book club
93. Lost a loved one
94. Had a baby
95. Seen the Alamo in person
96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake
97. Been involved in a law suit
98. Owned a cell phone
99. Been stung by a bee
100. Ridden an elephant

How did you do?

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day

Happy Valentine's Day! I have been reading a lot of blogs lately where the blog author doesn't like Valentine's Day or feels it is a "down" type of day everyone cannot share in. They feel as though it is a day for couples only. It has been somewhat commercialized into that. I don't feel that way about the day at all. I see it as a celebration of anything you love. Your love of God, your family and friends, fur "people", chocolate... It is impossible to share your love of them too much. We all feel so much better when we know there are others out there who love us and are thinking of us.

So dear readers, I love that you think enough of what I say to read this blog. I truly appreciate it. I wish for everyone to go out and share your love. I will do the same.

Now off to share my love with with my old pal chocolate...

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Amazing Artisan- Scott Wade

This week's Amazing Artisan is Scott Wade's Dirty Car Art.  It is something to look at his art and get your head around the fact that he is creating these beautiful scenes on dirty car windows.  It almost makes me want to get my car good and dirty and see if one of the girls would give this medium a try. When you look at the gallery of his work, just about every category is touched upon.  There are pictures of Lady Bird Johnson, Mount Rushmore, famous monsters, Willy Nelson, Mariachis, Grant Wood's American Gothic, dogs playing poker, and everything in between.  I find myself staring at his work with my mouth hanging open.  It is incredible.  Absolutely amazing!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Adventures in Wire Wrapping

I love the look of wire wrapping and have been wanting to give it a try. I bought some 26 gauge sterling wire from Thunderbird Supply during their last big sale. I also had some beautiful Swarovski crystals I had purchased on a road trip to my favorite "candy store", Turquoise Coyote. I had been racking my brain for the right project for these lovelies. Last the idea hit me and I was on a roll. I love how this turned out. It features green, brown and rose/fuchsia crystals. The color combination is perfect. I saw a strand of spinel while shopping at Turquoise Coyote. Instead of buying the strand, I recreated the colors as closely as I could in Swarovski. Anyone who knows me, knows I have a "thing" for Swarovski. I just love it.

Anyway I had a great time working on this necklace and matching earrings. I know I will be giving this technique a whirl again.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Sunday Stealing

As I was clicking around checking out all of the wonderful blogs out there, I stopped by one called On the Verge. It is a great blog about being a mom and such. Her post today was about another blog called "Sunday Stealing". Sunday Stealing blogs about those great memes from other people's blogs. They give credit to the blog they "stole" it from and posts it on their Sunday Stealing blog. I get a kick out of memes. They are filled with trivial minutiae that I thrive on. I always did do well when playing Trivial Pursuit. Anyway...I bring you this week's Sunday Stealing meme.

Sunday Stealing: The "Get to Know Your Friends" Meme

1. What is your occupation right now? Super Mom

2. What color are your socks right now? Skin tone (no socks)

3. What are you listening to right now? The sound of someone moving the dirty dishes around in the kitchen sink. I know this person will not wash them...oh no...

4. Last person you spoke to on the phone. Phillip

5. How old are you today? Older than I feel

6. What is your favorite sport to watch on TV? Figure skating or baseball

7. What is your favorite drink? Coke

8. Have you ever dyed your hair? Yes, as soon as someone asked me if I was taking my granddaughter out for breakfast. She was my 4 year old daughter...

9. Favorite food? Chocolate

10. What is the last movie you watched? The Princess Bride. I try to watch it as much as possible

11. Favorite day of the year? Christmas Day

12. How do you vent anger? Eating and yelling

13. What was your favorite toy as a child? A stuffed dog I named Gravy Train

14. Living arrangements? 1 husband, 2 human daughters, 2 canine daughters , and 2 feline daughters

15. What was the last thing that you cried about? Jonathan's death

16. Who is the friend you have had the longest? Debbie

17. What did you do last night? Went to church, came home and fixed dinner

18. What are you most afraid of? Snakes

19. In how many areas of your country have you lived? The southwest and southeast

20. What is your favorite flower? Sunflowers

Friday, February 6, 2009


I have always enjoyed writing...not that I am a great writer, but I like the process.  I like forming the words, experimenting with different pens and pencils, and checking out the various papers.  I love to go to Office Depot and just look around.  I am an office supply geek.  Robyn thinks I am nuts.  I get excited over different styles of pens, a new color of Sharpie, and fancy file systems.  

Blogging doesn't allow me to use those types of materials, but it has its own form of creativity that I enjoy just as much.  I love reading blogs.  I enjoy the way the owners use color, how they use the space on the "page" and how they tell so much about themselves when looking at the visual images shown.  The best part of a blog is what it says.  Blogging allows us to tell the world a little about ourselves in a manner that is curiously public and private at the same time.  What I say in a blog is out there for anyone to read, but it only a small part of the whole that is me.  It is that single point that makes blogging so fascinating.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009


I was surfing the net and came across a site called Cuteboo. She has posted a video called "Validation." It was wonderful. What a powerful message. I hope you enjoy it too.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Amazing Artisan- Blazer Arts

A couple of weeks ago I was reading the forums on Etsy and I came across a post where metalsmiths were discussing how they do silly things while they work.  I have dreams of wanting to be a metalsmith.  I am not sure if that would be a good idea with me being on a blood thinner and all.  Anyway, I enjoyed reading the posts and loved clicking though to their Etsy shops to drool over their work.  One shop, Blazer Arts, stood out to me.  I am in love with her work.  She adds an additional step to make her oxidized areas of her sterling pieces darker and more consistent in color.  The results of her work are so striking.  I love how the silver is two different colors, the light and the dark. Blazer Arts' pieces are modern, unique, and absolutely amazing.  

Check out her work at and

Monday, February 2, 2009

A New Pair of Earrings

I finally have motivated myself to make some new jewelry. I have been in a funk since early December when Robyn's best friend died. He was such a wonderful person and I still find it hard to believe he is gone. I think the arrival of the tumbler was a great help in spurring me into action. I want to play with it so I have to make something to tumble.

Last night while Phillip was watching the Super Bowl, I sat down and sketched out a couple of ideas. I played around with wire for a little bit and finally made two pair of earrings. One pair is solid silver and the other is pearl and Swarovski crystal. I took pictures today so I could list them, but I didn't like how the pearl earring pics came out. I will give those a try again tomorrow. I did list the sterling ones. I love how they will work with whatever you wear.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

My New Toy

Friday the mail delivery brought my new toy, a Lortone tumbler. I have been reading up on tumblers and how they are used when working with metals (silver in my case). I finally decided to take the leap and give it a try. So many of the silversmiths and metalsmiths I admire use one. I would love to branch out into other types of jewelry design. The tumbler will help in some of the areas I plan to try.

Pretty is performing her usual administrative duty of inspecting all that comes in the house. The tumbler passed the inspection.