Tuesday, December 30, 2008

My last writing assignment

Another creative course has come to an end, just like another year is about to. This class was called Writing Your Life Story, and although I plan to do that in the future, it was not for now. I still got a lot out of the class and have a better foundation for when the time is right for me to share my story. This last writing assignment called for us to write “200 words or less, tell me how you feel when you capture in your notebook or writer’s journal the essence of people and places that appear in your writing. Are you excited, afraid, puzzled, delighted, daunted, or a combination of all these feelings?” Since I was not actively gathering information on the people I have encountered, I wrote something a little different. The instructor’s comment is at the end.

For as long as I can remember, pen and paper have been an obsession of mine. When I was around 10 or 11, I started writing letters to pen pals around the world. There was Keiko in Japan, Farhana in India, and Sandra in France. It was so much fun buying colorful stationery and unusual pens and pencils. My handwriting was quite neat and legible back then, and I would constantly play with new ways of writing, sometimes slanting, sometimes in all-caps, sometimes straight up and down. Sometimes it depended on the paper and the pen I was using at the moment. As I’d get used to writing one way, my handwriting would eventually become sloppy and I would make up another one.

Every summer growing up, I would stay with my uncle in Finland. My cousin Anne was just as fascinated with papers and cards as I was, so we would visit a little paper shop where I was first introduced to everything Japanese. Well, maybe it wasn’t everything, but to a paper-obsessed young girl, Hello Kitty! was quite exciting. In that little store, I would stock up on writing pads, erasers that smelled like strawberries and other little notebooks, postcards, and gadgets.

As a funny twist to my obsession, I was more interested in collecting the pads and note cards than actually writing on them. If it wasn’t a letter being written to Keiko or Sandra, I liked the pages left blank. My love for everything paper-related made it challenging for me to actually write something in something so pretty.

When I started my first online writing course a few months back, I was encouraged to start journaling. Around the same time, I started attending a Single Moms group at church, and Claire, the leader, supplied us with pens and journals—it must have been fate that she encouraged us to write. I loved the little black notebook with pink and purple butterflies she handed each of us. It even had an elastic band to keep it closed. I immediate starting using it for my writing class and begged Claire for another one for the group. She was glad to give me one and told me they were from Target. I went and cleaned them out. They are cheap and they are the perfect size to carry around without having to buy a suitcase to lug them around. I also love the elastic. It’s not quite a lock on a diary, but it still gives me a sense of privacy, knowing it won’t fling open at a bad time.

Journaling in this inexpensive little book has given me the freedom to abandon trying to make my handwriting perfect and to just follow my thoughts, random as they are at times. I can also feel liberated in knowing that, although my daughters know how to read or are learning to read, my handwriting is so atrocious they would abandon their attempt to trying to decipher what I’ve written. I feel like my thoughts are still my thoughts and that they can remain private. In a cheap little black book with pink and purple butterflies.

My dear colleague Katja: This IS the best writing you’ve ever done for me, and you’ve done some excellent piece of work.
May I nudge you? I could see this in any women’s magazine that takes essays. OR how about a regional, or local one like Points North? Or how about one of the Christian women’s magazines that you read?
All that said, my friend, do not let this languish in your computer. We must, according to our beliefs, not hide our light beneath a bowl. Right? Eva

Friday, December 19, 2008

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Friday, November 14, 2008

New course, new assignments

My second assignment in the new course I’m taking online, Write Your Life Story, has us practicing dialogue. The assignment called for no more than 100, but this turned out to be 150 words. Oh well.

“Welcome to PF Chang’s,” our waiter greeted us. “My name is Rob, I’ll be your server today. Can I start you off with something to drink?”

“I’ll have your iced tea, please.”

“Same for me,” answered my dining companion.

We both reached for the menus handed to us and said, “Thank you,” in unison.

“Do you know what you want?” I asked him.

“I have no idea. I haven’t eaten here for a while. Do you have anything to recommend?” He opened the menu and perused the selections.

“Well, I haven’t had anything here that I didn’t like,” I answered. “Of course, I tend to pick between my two favorites every time I come here. Maybe I’ll try something new today for a change.”

We both sat in silence for a while, looking at all the options as Rob returned with our drinks. “Can I interest you in an appetizer?”

Friday, October 31, 2008

Oh dear, I’ve been tagged!

OK, so my dear friends Yazmin, of A Pretty Rock, and Joanne, of JoJoBell, tagged me, so I have to tag five people in return and give you Six Random Things About Me:

Consider yourself tagged:
1. Maryam of My Marrakesh
2. Leeza of LeezyBloggs
4. Holly of Bijoux D’Odalisque
5. Mike of Dutton Art

Six Random Facts About me:
1. I just finished my first Creative Writing course ever ... and I’m sad it’s over.
2. I hate wearing socks in my shoes. I’ll wear them to bed at night, but they come off in the morning.
3. I’m going to be 42 in less than two weeks and most days I’m still wondering what I want to be when I grow up.
4. I would love to take a year off to travel the world with my two girls.
5. I love my job, but I’m not sure it loves me. I am on my third computer in three years … I don’t know why they keep breaking.
6. I hate running, except in a forest. Running on uneven ground, where I stand to sprain my ankle or break my neck is just so much more fun than a flat trail.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Writing Assignment No. 5

Marianne felt the phone in her pocket vibrate and answered it before it started playing the tune of "You're so Beautiful." "Hello?"

"Hi, it's me. It's an emergency." On the other end of the phone was Marianne's dear friend Caroline.

"What's going on?"

"I just got off the phone with Thomas. He's threatening to take me back to court again."

"On what grounds?" Marianne asked. She felt for her friend. She has been through so much already, Lord, she thought, isn't it time she got a break. "Hey, give me a second, I have to get off Ziggy and open the gate."

"You're talking to me while you're on your horse?" Caroline started laughing.

"Yes, and I had to stop and open the gate and join the others on the trail," Marianne chuckled. "I have been neglecting him lately, and he was none too happy about the short ride today, but enough about us. What's going on?" she asked again, as she closed the gate behind her and got back up on her Tennessee Walker.

"So, Thomas called me about the girls and the upcoming holiday and before I knew it we were arguing about money again. He is now severely behind on his child support payments, and somehow he still makes me out to be the bad guy. Now he's supposedly got an "ace" up his sleeve and is taking me back to court. I know I should put my trust in God, but I am so tired of fighting like this."

"Tell me exactly what he said," Marianne encouraged her friend, knowing that a burden shared weighed less. She had been there herself just a few years earlier. The ugly divorce that came just nine months after her wedding vows. She struggled for so many months on her own and learned from her mistakes that she should have reached out to her friends, no matter how scared she was to appear the fool for marrying Harry after only knowing him for four months. From her own experience, she learned that everyone needs someone to confide in, but more importantly, everyone needs someone to pray for them.

Caroline recounted the ugly phone conversation she had just had with her ex-husband and waited for Marianne's reaction. She was sure of one thing: Caroline had handled herself much better this time. From the sounds of it, she had not fallen apart, and she had not hung up on him or threatened him in return. She'd come a long way from the young blushing bride she had been ten years earlier, when she and Thomas had married. Maybe she had needed to grow up a little more. It seemed unfair that this was the way God had chosen for her to mature, but no matter how difficult they would sometimes seem, Marianne was confident in God's ways. She continued to listen patiently as her friend relived the last half-hour. She knew how much Caroline had already been through, losing her husband, losing her house and taking care of two children on her own. When Caroline finished talking, Marianne thanked God for her friend before offering her encouragement.

"It sounds to me like you handled this very well, Caroline. I am so proud of you for not falling apart and for keeping your composure. Remember, we don't fight flesh and blood, but the powers and principalities." Marianne knew that Caroline was familiar with the scripture she referring to.

"I know. And thank you. I'm proud of myself, too."

"I really don't think Thomas has a leg to stand on. What judge is going to listen to a man who is already breaking the law by not giving you what has been court-ordered?"

"Well, that's what I was thinking, too, but I still get so scared that he is going to be able to hurt us in some way."

"Let's pray right now for God's protection and for His strength and wisdom," Marianne said as she began to pray for her friend.

(668 words)

And the instructor said:

It's going VERY WELL, Katja. You know we must be creative and you know why. So just let it flow into your private writing time. Eva

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Writing Assignment No. 4

As I look at my necklace, I begin to remember where I was at the time I made it. I was living in the only house I’ve ever lived in. A lovely split-level house that I had made a home for my husband and our children. I had recently picked up a new hobby I had been thinking about for quite some time. I remember my first trip to a bead store and how overwhelmed I was. I looked in awe at all the sparkly and shiny stones and beads in all shapes and sizes hanging on the walls. I have become quite familiar with bead stores since then, but that day I felt like a fish out of water. I looked at all the treasures in all the different colors and walked out without purchasing anything. I didn’t return until years later, when I had a plan and a purpose for my trip.

I remember leafing through one of my favorite catalogs at the time. A catalog filled with handcrafted articles, such as leather belts, boots, skirts, sweaters, and jewelry. The most beautiful jewelry I had ever seen. With each book that came in the mail, I was intrigued with each of the artists’ individual style. I also realized that I would never be able to afford any of them, no matter how simple they seemed. I thought back to my first visit to that bead store and thought, I can make something like this. With a picture of a very simple pearl and silver necklace in mind, I returned to the store and bought a strand of pearls, a bag of sterling silver balls, beading wire and a lobster clasp. Armed with my purchases I went home and made my first necklace.

As my confidence grew, I created my own version of the very popular Y-necklace and that is the necklace I have in front of me today. It was birthed out of love for citrine and peridot. I can’t recall if I realized the significance of those gemstones back then, but they are not lost on me today. My birthday is in November, which has citrine as its birthstone. Peridot is the birthstone of August, the month my two daughters were born three years apart.

This necklace, in its simplicity and its complexity, represents me in a different place. I have since gone through a heartbreaking separation from the love of my life. I have survived a divorce I believed I would never have to face. I lost my house before foreclosures became a trend. For the past three and a half years, I have shared custody every other weekend with the man I thought I would grow old with. This necklace takes me back to the time before and makes me sad. This necklace also brings me to the present, making me look around and see all the things God has blessed me with. I have a job I love. I have too healthy girls. I have friends whose shoulders I am allowed to cry on and who I can support in return. I have a roof over my head, a reliable car, clothes and shoes, and we have never gone hungry.

More than that, God has blessed me with creativity, with resilience and with unconditional love. I have learned that I can do it. When I think that there is not one more ounce of energy in me to raise these girls on my own, I find myself doing it. When I feel utterly defeated, He sends someone along with a word of courage. When I am in need of being comforted, He brings me love in little arms and little kisses. This necklace is proof that things made with care will last, and items treasured become more valuable with time. Whether they are children, friendships or the love of God. (646)

The only thing my instructor said, was:

Nudge: Check the guidelines for www.faithhopeandfiction.com. Okay? Eva

Hm ... I guess it's not negative, at least?!

Friday, October 10, 2008

My Third Writing Assignment

Jonas turns the light on in Molly's bedroom and gently puts a hand on her back. "Time to get up, Sunshine." Molly stretches and tries to open her eyes. This morning, she doesn't want to. She turns her back and tries to pull the covers back over her head to keep the light out. "Molly munchkin," Jonas prods her, "if you don't get up, I can't fix you happy-face pancakes." Molly peeks from under the blanket. "Five," she says. "That's a lot of happy faces. Are you sure?" "Mmm. Two." "OK. Two it is."

Jonas leaves his precocious 4-year-old in bed and starts to prepare breakfast. Soon Molly comes and wraps her little arms around his legs. He treasures their sweet little morning ritual. He often finds himself prodding her along, but he still treasures the sweet, sleepy girl he has been blessed with. "Let's eat some pancakes," he announces, "and then we have to brush our teeth and ..." "And put some clothes on," Molly finishes his sentence. "That's right!"

Today Jonas decides to walk Molly to preschool instead of taking the city bus. There is a fresh blanket of snow on the ground and they laugh as they make tracks on the sidewalk. Jonas slides his feet to make it seem as if his feet are as long as skis and Molly giggles as she tries to do the same. Her giggles stop when they reach preschool. "Daddy, are you going to pick me up?" "Of course, don't I always pick you up on Mondays?" "I think so, Daddy." "How about I promise you so." Jonas bends down to take off her jacket. He gives her a squeeze. "I will be back to get you in six hours." Molly watches her father leave, assured that he will be back later. (302 words)

I didn’t make the dialogue breaks here, thinking I’d save some space!

And the instructor's reaction:

You gave me chills, this is wonderful. Is it part of a novel? Tell me yes. Eva

I think I am totally excited and soaring and on cloud something or other! On to the next assignment, right!

Monday, September 29, 2008

Second Writing Assignment

Write about a color in the first person. Yeah, right! I thought this little exercise was going to whoop my fanny! Sheesh! The easier it sounds the more complicated it can get. Anyway, here’s what I came up with …

I am calcium aluminum silicate. I know, I don’t sound very exciting, do I? How about if I tell you I am more saturated than the green in a Christmas tree and more lucent that the lichen on the rock in your backyard. I am less valuable than emerald and tsavorite, but far more precious than green quartz and hessonite. I can be as varied as from lime to kelly, from avocado to olive, from spruce to Douglas fir. If you shine a light on me, I might be so dense that no light will pass through me, or I may be so translucent you will see a whole world in me. I am vivacious, but never listless and dull. I am moss on some days and fern on others. Some might call me plain old green, but there is nothing plain about me. My name implies I have been likened to the gooseberry. My name is in fact grossular garnet.


I am floating right now, as I got this is from my instructor:

I didn’t know, have never known and this was a whole new world for me. Good job. The images jumped from the screen and connected to me at once. I’m delighted with your writing. It is tight and clever (clever is good), and that’s important. You’ve conveyed strong images too. I’ve discovered that the writers who do well with this assignment, seem to truthfully thrive for the remainder of the course … Eva

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Perfect Bargains!

I love it when I can get something at a fraction of the original price! I am usually not a very good bargain hunter ... could be because I don’t hunt. I shop. I just go, when time allows, and usually end up buying everything at full price. Yup. Not very smart, but I am just not that good at looking for the bargains. A month or so ago, I found myself some new underwear. Yes, a girl’s gotta have underwear. I got a couple of pairs on sale (yes, I just happened to find a bargain, but I wasn’t looking. And when I’m trying out a new style, I don’t want to pay full price.). Turns out I loved them and wanted to get more, since they had them in one of my favorite colors. However, they were going to be $10.50 for ONE pair. No way! I’m sorry, I may just be cheap in that area, but I am not paying $10.50 for a pair of underwear. Well, they did have them at a buy three for $24, but I was still not going to pay that. So, I was just going to have to wait and take my chances with THAT color being gone by the time they marked them down. Well, I stopped by the other day and saw that they were finally marked down to a doable $3.99 per pair. However, when I went to pay for them, they rang up at the original price and the cashier said that they were on the wrong table. “Well, never mind then,” I said. “I don’t want them at that price.” But, she was already in the process of telling me she would honor the sale price since it was their fault they were all on the same table. I may not be the best bargain shopper, but I am still blessed. If all it takes is getting three pair of panties for $11.97 instead of $24, it doesn’t take much to make this girl happy! God is good!

Monday, September 22, 2008

My First Writing Assignment

The assignment was to finish one of five sentences, of which I picked "Looking at Paris in this light ...," and to finish it in roughly five minutes and under 300 words. Here's what happened:

Looking at Paris in this light really reminds me of walking down Champs Elysee close to midnight, after a lovely evening with Jean-Paul. I wonder where he is now? What ever became of him? Does he still set up his easel at Luxembourg park every morning and watch that beautiful group of people do their tai chi? Does he stroll along Rue du Fabourg smoking his Galoise, telling some beautiful young woman she should become a model. I wish I had listened to him back then. Back when I still had the looks and


And that's as far as I got in five minutes ... I seriously think there was something wrong with my egg timer! Well, a little bit discouraged, especially since I made the mistake of reading some of the other entries, I had to do a lot of talking to myself (is that a bad thing?!) to get the courage to try again. I tried planning my story a little better, and here is my second attempt:

Looking at Paris in this light takes me back to that night when I met Jean-Paul. I wonder what ever became of him. Does he still take his easel to Luxembourg park and paint while the others are doing their tai chi exercises? Does he still walk along Champs Elysees with a cigarette dangling from the corner of his mouth? Does he still tell that young lady that she should become a model? I should have listened to him. I should have taken that bold step back when I still had the looks.

"Mammy!" the voice of my grand daughter brings me back to the present.
"Bubby!" I give her a big hug, grateful for the love she is willing to share with her ailing grandmother.

"Mama, what are you doing with that old shoe box?" My precious daughter, always looking out for me and my well being. "Are you looking at those old postcards from Paris again?"


Now I wasn't at all happy with that new beginning, so back to the drawing board, so to speak. I wanted a combination of the two, so this last one is after five minutes of writing (from the beginning) and about seven minutes of editing. I'm a terrible typist, which is my second excuse for not being able to produce nearly as many words as everyone else. That and that dang egg timer!

Looking at Paris in this light really reminds me of walking down Champs Elysees close to midnight, after a lovely evening with Jean-Paul. I wonder where he is now? What ever became of him? Does he still set up his easel at Luxembourg Park every Saturday morning and watch that beautiful group of people do their Tai Chi? Does he stroll along Rue du Faubourg smoking his Gauloise, telling some beautiful young woman she should become a model. I wish I had listened to him back then. Back when I still had the looks and ...

"Mammy!" The voice of my grand-daughter, Barbara, pulls me back to the present.
"Babby!" The name she called herself when she was just learning to talk became my sweet nickname for her. I lean over and give her a hug, grateful for the love I always get from her.

"Mama, what are you doing with that old shoe box?" My precious daughter, always so full of concern for my well-being. "Are you looking at those old postcards from Paris again?"

"Yes, dear. Come sit here," I pat the space next to me on the bed. "Tell me about this one," and I hand her the post card with the upper left corner folded over and the little notch on the bottom. My daughter begins to tell me of the river running through the scenery on the card with the Eiffel Tower on the right-hand side. Just like I remember it when I had folded that corner over when my sight was starting to fail me. (261 words)

Thursday, September 18, 2008

The Dress & The Boots

So, the dress (from I.N.C. International Concepts at Macy’s) I purchased about a week or two ago, and now I’d love to have the boots to go with the dress ... yeah, I don’t think it’s going to happen. Not exactly in my budget (check for yourself here). But I can drool, can’t I?! Yeah, I’ll be doing that ... hm ...

What is it with being caught between a very conservative look and a rocker chick? I just can’t seem to stay in the same department, always mixing up the lacy with the leather. And yes, this dress is as much lace as I’m ever going to wear! I guess that’s the fun of it, though, making it my own style. This should in effect keep me from following trends, but alas, I am very much drawn to what’s in the stores at any given time. I do try to avoid buying the obviously trendy accoutrements, if only to save myself from cringing six months later when I see the item hanging in my closet after wearing it maybe twice. I try to fill my closet with classics. Lots of black slacks, black shoes and black boots. I go a little bolder with tops now than I used to. Have a little more fun. Try a few more different colors and cuts. Play a little. Why don’t you try a little more color?

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

And the winner is …

So, I have lived with my new hairstyle for 10 days now and I am loving it! I was just so set on donating my hair and just putting up with short hair until it grew out again, but now I think I will just leave it short. For now. For a while!

And for another change in my life, I am contemplating going back to school. Not physically, since that would be impossible, but school nonetheless. Kennesaw University has Continuing Education classes online and I am seriously thinking about signing up for a Creative Writing course. It starts tomorrow, so I guess I have to make a decision soon! Hm ... ya think?!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

One Haircut, Three Hairstyles

I just found this and really like the versatility of this cut. Look at all the options! I even love the slicked-back look, since that’s kind of what I’ve been doing on the days I’m too lazy to wash my hair in the morning. I know, it’s really short in the back, but my hair is going to have to go really short to get the full 10 inches Locks of Love requires. I also think this cut would work with the coloring on the upper right or lower right photos in my previous post. It’s just nice to know I don’t have to go, you know, crew!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

My latest obsession

I don’t usually obsess over clothes (no, really!), but as soon as I saw this on my very innocent trip to the mall at lunch today, I was had. I want this Trina Turk dress. Now. Can someone please buy it for me!!! Well, I thought it was worth a shot. Hm ...

Friday, August 8, 2008

Exploring New Hair Styles

So, I have a few more weeks before the big cut, but I thought I needed to start looking at different hair styles and color options. For those of you who don’t know, I am donating 10 inches to Locks of Love. I am ready! I realize I won’t have much hair left in the back, but at this point, I don’t care! I am tired of this long hair that is neither straight nor curly, but just something in between that is far from easy to handle and most days less than flattering. Not actually sure what would be flattering at this stage in my life, but the main thing is that at least one child who has no hair left due to chemo will get something to make them feel pretty again.

These are the best styles I have found so far. And I may even choose to go back to blond, just for kicks. It’s easy to become a brunette again, if I feel it’s too much. I just think that if I’m going this short, might as well have fun with it!

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Vacation Memories

If I had to sum up our two-day mini vacation with three pictures, these would be them. All three are from Rock City, which I realized on our way there is actually situated in Georgia. We visited Ruby Falls, a one-time visit for me personally, Tennessee Aquarium, the IMAX Theater and the Incline Railway, another one-time visit. Tennessee Aquarium has been a favorite of ours in the past and it didn't disappoint this time either. But my new favorite is definitely Rock City. I had no expectations before going there, so it was a pleasant surprise to get to enjoy this beautiful outdoor garden of plants, trees and rocks … lots of rocks!

Friday, June 27, 2008

I snagged a Treasury!

Some of my favorite items and or friends on Etsy at the moment. There isn’t room for all of them, so it was hard to pick without stepping on people’s toes or hurting someone’s feelings. No one has been excluded on purpose. I was just going for the blue-green theme here. I hope you enjoy!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Going on Vacation!

I have been so swamped at work the last several weeks, in addition to looking for a house, but I am finally taking some time off for me and the girls. I’ve decided to treat us to one night at a nice hotel in Chattanooga, and to several of the area’s attractions. I’m sure there are more exciting places to visit, but since I have to keep everything child friendly, and interesting for an almost 5-year-old, I bought tickets to Ruby Falls, Rock City and the Incline Railway. The next day will be spent at the Tennessee Aquarium, where we always have a good time, and catching a 3D movie at the IMAX theater, which will be fun for me as well since I have not been in years! It’s not cheap to even do such a short vacation trip as this, but I think it will be good for me and the girls to get away for a couple of days together.

Taken on our last visit to the Tennessee Aquarium Butterfly Garden.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

I did it again!

But, I have to say I was rather conservative. There were two additional strands I really wanted, but these are the only ones I need for a specific project that’s been in my head, bursting to come out, so I only ordered these. AND, I’m even sharing half the sillimanite with Sheela (Eclettica), so I’m really doing really good ... or so I’d like to think! Ha!

Monday, May 5, 2008

In a New Direction

I have been somewhat inspired lately to make earrings. Different earrings. I think I am at a point where I can safely say that my style is changing. This is the direction I want to go. It’s fun! I’m having fun again. If other people enjoy what I make and want to buy it, wonderful! If they don’t, I will still keep making what I want to make until God tells me to stop.

The first pair—Blueberry Sorbet—features a new stone for me. It’s called Angelite and has the slightest little shimmer to it. I paired these long smooth drops with faceted rondelles of amethyst and smooth ovals of pink tourmaline. The second pair—Champagne Bubbles—features faceted beer quartz coins topped with faceted rondelles of Oregon sunstone, rondelles and smooth ovals of tourmaline in different shades. The third pair—Dreaming of Sweden—has gorgeous ovals of kyanite with a cube-faceted lemon quartz above it. They are accented by faceted rondelles of blue apatite and smooth ovals of yellow tourmaline. The fourth pair—Spring Lilacs—has beautiful romantic drops of pink opal topped by a cluster of sparkly, faceted moonstone rondelles and a few pink tourmalines.

I’m ready make more, and I have several of my Flickr friends to thank for being there to lend their support and to spur me on, even when they had no idea I was struggling. I have seen and met more talent on Flickr pages than I could’ve ever imagined and the best thing is that, although we are all making jewelry and are essentially in competition with each other, there is nothing but genuine love and admiration for each other’s work. I never get the feeling that we are competing. At all. Except maybe to have the most amount of gemstones. LOL! I have found a group of people with the same obsession for sparkly things as I have—and it’s a good place to be!

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Gemaholic Anonymous

Yup, I'm the official charter member at Flickr! And as one of the true gemaholics, I have, yet again, splurged. At least this time I have an accomplice, as Emily, of Emily Gray Jewels, is splitting at least one of these strands with me.

London blue topaz and smoky quartz. Yum!

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

My drug of choice

And now, I’m putting myself on a buying ban. I’m NOT EVEN going to the Bead Show this weekend. There is no point …

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Amongst the best of friends!

Darling Jo at Gemheaven Jewellery in Cornwall, UK, included me in her Treasury on Etsy! She is such a Sweetie!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Hearts Me

I know 130 isn't much for some people, but I'm excited as can be!!!

Monday, March 24, 2008

Beadaholics Anonymous

Yeah, yeah, whatever! I know. But I got them anyway, so there! Microfaceted 7mm lilac amethyst rondelles and 8-14mm (!) smooth spessartine garnet pears. I’m in heaven!

Sunday, March 23, 2008

A Bracelet and A Necklace

That’s what I made this weekend, and I feel very good about that. I had not created anything in a looooong time (Did I say long time?) and was feeling quite … not-so-good about anything! So, I decided to tackle some instant gratification: a simple chain necklace with an antique Tibetan pendant. And something more complicated: a very gemmy bracelet featuring smooth prasiolite nuggets, London blue topaz, Oregon sunstone (see previous post about my new love!), moonstone, dark citrine and phrenite.

Friday, March 21, 2008

I won, I won, I won!!!

And I spent, I spent, I spent! Yeah, yeah, whatever! We already know I have a ... whatever. Here they are! I got one in an Auction, the other as a Buy Now (on eBay, where else). I hope they arrive looking at least this good. The first one is a bottle green apatite, the second one aqua blue apatite.

Did I already mention green is my favorite color? Blue is a close second. Especially blue kyanite, which one of my dear Flickr friends has been tempting me with lately. Alas, I will have to stay away from any more bead shopping, if I intend to have any money to spend at the next Bead Show, which is April 5-6, which is a child free weekend for me. Yay!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

A few purchases

My hands have been slapped (just joking, Lotta!) for not sharing my latest treasures from my local bead store, when they had a 50 percent, plus an extra 15 percent off sale for their member(s), i.e. me!

Here are my finds: faceted roundels of red spinel (raspberry red) and red spinel (redder red) and pink tourmaline. I have, as usual not had time to sit down and make anything with them yet, but … as I just finished my freelance project this week, I will be able to claim my own time again starting next week … if there is such a thing as “my own time” with my two little girls.

I also fell in love with these two strands from two wonderful Etsy sellers. The first one, smooth grossular garnet, from Wynna at glimmerbeadtrust.etsy.com and the second one, Oregon sunstone, from Derek at opalillusions.etsy.com. Yeah, well … I didn’t just fall in love with them, I ordered them. Got the first one and they were beautiful! And I got the sunstone, which I learned is real sunstone and not the manmade stuff most people sell and I stay away from. Let’s just say, “Wow!” They are fabulous! Absolutely gorgeous stone! Nothing at all like the commercially pawned sunstone ...if I may be so crass … and I may, since this is my blog! Ha!

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Neglected no more!

I have completely neglected to post anything here in a long time … I’ve had no time for fun and play* for the last three weeks while working on my annual freelance project, but now … I’m done! It’s a good feeling! Well, I’m actually not completely done, yet, as I still have to send it to the printer, but my client has approved it and that’s a major step in the right direction.

Anyway, I thought I’d say something, just to say “I’m alive!”

Also, I managed to get a half-decent picture of a project I finally finished, after a long nightmare of getting more of the same chain I started this necklace with a year ago. Now that it’s done, I’m not so sure I like it. I am always so disappointed when I have, what I think is, this great idea and I finally manage to find both the time and the materials to make it happen and then … eh! I’m leaving it alone for the time being, but who knows … it may get taken back apart again.

*I don’t mean to insinuate that designing this project is not fun, but it’s of a different kind, and it’s not play (it’s for money!), and I miss beading when I’m in the thick of it.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Thursday, February 21, 2008

The recipe

In case you are tempted by the previous post, here is the recipe for it. It is quite tasty!

Spinach Pizza

1 10 oz. pkg. of chopped spinach, thawed
1/2 cup margarine, melted
2 eggs
1 cup flour
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt*
1 lb. Monterey Jack cheese, cubed

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 13x9 pan. Drain spinach well. Mix together all ingredients except cheese. Fold in cheese. Pour into pan and bake for 40 minutes or until lightly browned.

*if you use salted margarine/butter, I would only use about 1/2 teaspoon salt here.


Sunday, February 10, 2008

Sunday Baking!

So, I was unable to find a good picture of a spinach pizza for one of my magazines at work last week, so I decided to make the pizza myself (it’s really more like a pie) and photograph it ... here is the result. Haven’t tried it yet, but it looks good enough to eat!

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Saturday Shopping!

I have a confession to make. I know, you’re thinking, “Again?” Ha, ha! I have a serious shopping addiction. I can’t stay off the precious gems sites on Etsy and eBay (forgive me all you serious Etsy people for mentioning the two in the same sentence). I would do just fine if I stayed off my computer altogether. I wouldn’t start looking if I weren’t already sitting here with nothing much to do but to look at pretty pictures of even prettier stones.

Oh, what’s the point!!!

Here’s what I purchased today from a fabulous fellow Etsian.

So, just shoot me!!!

Friday, February 8, 2008

Fighting it ...

OK. So, I’ve been running a low grade fever for the last ten days (supposedly, I have a sinus infection), and my youngest has strep throat as of this morning and the older one has been coughing and hacking for two weeks … I’m exhausted! I can’t muster up much energy to do anything or make anything, except post a pretty picture of the sky to rest my eyes on …

Happy Friday!

Monday, January 28, 2008

I have been …

… just a little creative and just a little lazeeeee … so, to prove more of the former, rather than the latter, here’s this weekend’s results … I have also been updating my photos on Etsy, so anyone taking a look over there (link on the right) should notice a fresher look … however, it is still evolving, so it may change again! I find myself being a beader AND a photographer nowadays. Not a bad thing, just not what I expected when I set out on my Etsy adventure.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

In case there’s any question

I do actually make stuff with the gems I buy, I promise! Just to prove myself, here are three of the pieces I made last weekend. And in case anyone recognizes the style in the last one, yes, I do have Magdalena’s blessing to show it and to sell it on Etsy. She’s a sweetheart, and such an encouragement and source of inspiration. She has opened my eyes to the possibilities of beaded jewelry design. I doubt I will ever do the kind of work she does, but I definitely liked making this bracelet. Lots of headpins used, that’s for sure! The second bracelet is made pretty much the same way, but it's got more of my own flavor to it, I think.

And in case you haven’t had a chance yet, go check out the updated photos I have started uploading on Etsy (you can actually see some of them right here to the right). I believe they look a lot better now. A little brighter and ... “happier!”

And brighter and happier is what I hope to be after a good night’s sleep, so ... Good night!