Wednesday, February 13, 2019

I Have to Pat Myself on the Back

From Google Images
Mom always says I have to toot my own horn because no one else will. So, today I am patting myself on the back and sharing it too.

From Google Images
On Monday I was working away Googling answers to try and figure out how to create rules on an InfoPath form I have in SharePoint. I had figured out two of the issues and now I was working on my last one when all of the sudden the power went out and everything turned off for a second.

From Google images
This is how I felt when the power came back up - I have no idea when I did my last save in InfoPath - so I had no idea if all the changes I just did were still good. Also, did I just lose all the links I found in the Google search for my answers. UGH....

My computer eventually came back up after about 45 minutes. I was able to restore my sessions, except for the last tab of links I had found for my last question - now I had to remember how I worded the question to find the last site I was on for my answer - that was fun - NOT!

Because of what happened with the power outage - almost all the systems were down across campus.

But - because I migrated our SharePoint on-prem environment to the SharePoint Cloud environment - our department was at least up and running with SharePoint.

I also could work because I had moved almost all my documentation to the Cloud environment. So, because our network drives were down, I at least could get to the documents I needed to work.

Now - it is trying to change the mentality of our work employees on using the Cloud SharePoint environment and moving their documents to the Cloud. I have been offering training, of course some people attend, but not the majority of the employees. I am now setting up meetings to go out to each individual school/college and meet with those areas and show them what the Cloud environment has to offer.

From Google Images
I sent an After Action Review to my AVPs a few weeks ago, but yesterday I sent a follow-up email detailing what happened on Monday and that our SharePoint environment was up and running and if users had moved their documents to the Cloud they could have retrieved them to work.

So - I did send a what a great idea it was that we moved to the Cloud email :)

That is my Pat on the Back story for this week. Mom is right - you have to toot your own horn because no one else will (mom does not count - she thinks I do an amazing job with the Cloud - but she is biased).

Friday, February 8, 2019

Always Be Yourself. Unless You Can Be a Dragon...Then Always Be a Dragon

My package arrived!
Yesterday was not a good day at work - nothing was going correctly in SharePoint - and the day seemed to never end.

I called mom and told her I was on my way home and I had a bad day - she said something arrived that would cheer me up - and she was correct.

My little dragons arrived!
I have been waiting anxiously for this little gems to arrive.

Photo from Sally Sutherland's Facebook page.

Early in January Sally said she had attempted to make dragons and they were in the kiln. I was waiting and waiting and waiting to see when she was going to list them - and finally the notification came on her Facebook page. I love dragons - I have been collecting them since I was in high school and one day I really want a tattoo of dragon.

I had my alarm set to make sure I was at my computer to get ready to buy some dragons. So, at 1:00pm Eastern - I was on the Etsy site (had Paypal up) and started buying dragons. 

I don't think I had so much fun in a long time. The first one I bought was the little turquoise one in Sally's banner. I tried to purchase the red one, but he sold fast. I also tried to purchase the little black guy, but he was gone. So, I went to the next ones I really wanted - I am sure there are some very angry customers with me - because I grabbed my other two little guys and I saw they were in other people's carts. I was hitting that buy button like no one's business - and I got them. I think my heart was pounding more in those five minutes then the whole time I work out :)

So - here are my little treasures:

The first one I bought - doesn't have a name yet - but he will

It is hard to tell - but there is blue going through the black.
So much fun looking at all the details
Isn't he adorable - I love that little heart!

After looking them over and being amazed with the details I had to figure out where I wanted to place them because I want to see them every day.

I have a curio cabinet that used to be my grandparents that I have all my glass goodies. I found the perfect spot for them.

There are in perfect company with my two Luccio Bubbaco pieces and my Emilio Santini pieces. I also have some other glass pieces from local artists.

I am overjoyed with my little dragons and my lost girls from Sally Sutherland. If you have not seen her work - you need to follow her on Facebook. If you want one of her lost girl beads you have to be very fast. Mom and I have a total of three of her lost girls (two of them I special ordered from Sally - one was for mom and the other was for me and the third one I was on Etsy so fast my head spun so I could buy her).

Check Sally out - you won't be disappointed!

Thursday, January 31, 2019

January Theme Challenge – Moon - Reveal Day

Moon Image - Google search
This month's Art Elements Theme Challenge - Moon. The minute I saw the blog post I signed mom and I up for January's challenge.

I was still on vacation that day - so mom and I started doing a Google search for moon images, goddess of the moon images and moon quotes. The above image is just two pages of images we have. We actually found seven pages of images. Of course we can always come back to some of these ideas and figure out something to do with them.

I also sketched up some ideas for stamped pieces to make into a necklace or bracelet. I don't usually sketch - so this is a big deal. I will come back to these ideas when it warms up some in the garage - that is where all of my stamping tools are. Right now we were about -33 wind chill - but this weekend it is supposed to be up to almost 50 degrees (shorts baby).

From all the images mom and I looked at - this is the one we decided to use to make a pendant. I am so glad mom is the one who comes up with the pattern ideas. Even though mom comes up with a pattern - there are times when she is sawing that she makes adjustments on the fly. I can't do that - I don't do well winging it.

The other pendant we ended up doing was based off of this large pendant mom made for a friend. I love how the design turned out and both mom and I fell in love with the colors. What I wanted to do was also add a "moon" pendant to the back of the tree - so you could see the moon through the branches.

So - these are the two/three pendants mom ended up sawing out for me to enamel.

I did a quick enameling session - before we got hit with the subarctic weather.

I also had a two day bead making session - to make sure I had enough beads made for both pieces.

Once the enameling was done - mom wire wrapped the moon pendant and the goddess tree pendant together. Mom said, "She was winging it". I think it turned out really well.

Mom did have one little mishap - she spilled the seed beads on the beading tray. I told her at least it wasn't on the floor - that would have been fun to clean up.

Okay - enough of me babbling - here are the final pieces we created.

I always worry how the finished piece will look, because you never know what color is going to come out of the kiln (too many factors like temperature and humidity play a role).

 The colors I used for the woman I call my cosmos colors. I think of the woman being part of the cosmos - she is all knowing - she is thinking peaceful thoughts while looking at the moon.

The beads I call my cosmos beads too - so they are a perfect fit with the "Woman of the Cosmos".
The large accent stones are Silver Needle Agate. We didn't have a big enough toggle clasp (our favorite store went out of business and we can't find large clasps we like) so I used a large lobster claw clasp and then made a loop for it to hook on to.

I am so happy with this piece - it is going to be very hard to part with.

This is our tree goddess/moon piece. Mom received the design idea from her friend - and then she drew on the design to come up with a pattern we could saw out. I just loved how it looked after we made it, and wanted to incorporate it into this month's challenge. We just needed to add a moon to the whole thing.

Still with the space theme - I call these lampwork beads my "Kuiper Belt" beads. The accent beads are Kambaba Jasper and seed beads. This necklace does not have a clasp.

A close-up of the pendant. The greens are three different greens that I just decided to put together and see how it turned out when I pulled it from the kiln. And I lucked out - the color is amazing!

Another full view of the necklace.

Another look at the beads.

Thanks for sticking it out till the end. Here is a list of everyone who participated. Have fun blog hopping - because I know I can't wait to see everyone's creations:

Beth - you are here

Art Elements Crew:

Monday, January 28, 2019

Prepping for January Art Elements Theme and Posting to Etsy

Mom and I have been working away at January's Art Elements Monthly Theme - the Moon. Mom is actually cleaning the beads I made with a flex shaft and a diamond bit. We do this with all of our beads.

Here is mom filing away at one of the pendants. If you would like to see her file for  few seconds - check out the video on our Facebook page.

We actually made two pendants for this challenge - I do have sketches I did for other ideas that I will complete when it isn't so cold out in the garage.

Mom and I use $1 cookie trays to lay out our ideas to see how the lampwork beads, accent beads and pendants will work. We also tell each other whether will like the beads being used or a big fat "NO".

Mom is wire wrapping two of the enameled pieces together. Mom said she was winging it - I think it turned out great.

I have also been slowly listing more things to our Etsy store. I did get the metal prints posted of the classic cars mom and I photographed and had infused into aluminum. I still have a few more metal prints I need to take photographs of and get listed.

I also listed this key chain - Kindness Moves Mountains. I love how these key chains are turning out. We saw out the copper, hand stamp the sayings, then texture the copper, liver of sulfur, seal and then mom assembles the key chain with tassels she makes and a key ring.

I posted two of our ThumBOWLina bowls. They are great for decorations, holding rings, and we have had customers use them in their weddings.

Mom and I just started using the sterling silver chain with the enameled copper pendants. These aren't like our double-sided pendants, but they are enameled on both sides. I have listed six of these and I have another one that needs to be photographed and then listed. I also have six pairs of earrings, the same color enameled as the pendants, that I still need to photograph and then list.

Mom and I are trying to stay busy. With it as cold as it has been - I have no desire to be in the garage. The garage is insulated and I do have heaters going, but when I turn the exhaust fan on it sucks out all the hot air. So, it isn't very fun being out there working.

We do have a whole pile of pieces that need to be sawed out. I also have ideas for a couple of pendants I would like to stamp, so need to saw out those blanks. So, doing what we can in the computer room and hope it warms up sometime so I can enamel.

Well, come back on the 31st of January when we post our pieces for the Moon themed challenge. I am so looking forward to seeing what everyone else has created.

Saturday, January 19, 2019

Classic Car Metal Prints and Prepping for the Art Elements Challenge

Classic Car - Metal Prints

Classic Car - Metal Prints

Classic Car - Metal Prints
The metal prints mom and I ordered of the photos we have taken of classic cars arrived this week. I now need to take the metal prints out of the plastic and put our label on the back and take photos of all of them and get them posted to Etsy.

Mom and I are really happy with the way these pictures turned out. They are some photos we took at the Danville, IL art show/car show and the Whyte Horse Winery car show.

I told mom this year we need to get to a couple more car shows and take photos - I am really happy with how these turned out.

I have signed mom and I up for the January Art Elements theme challenge - Moon. The above is an image we found and mom made a pattern out of it.

I even did a couple of sketches - not sure if I will get them done for the challenge - but I am proud of myself for actually sketching something out (I usually make mom draw everything).

I did torch and make three different types of beads to go with the pieces. I am not sure if we will use all of the pieces or not. It will be a surprise for you and us.

Here is mom filing one of the pendants.

So - I will leave it here. And I can't wait to share the finished pieces on January 31st.
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