Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Fun Holiday Weekend

Once of the rose bushes we bought. It rained Tuesday night and then the
sun came out. This had just bloomed that day.
This past weekend was a nice weekend for mom and myself. We did some shopping at the Round the Fountain Art Fair, bought several rose bushes and clematis to plant in the yard, worked on making beads, sawing and I actually cleaned my part of the house. So, I think it was a pretty productive weekend.

Mom and I bought more garden art pieces to add to the "Smelly Plot" between the two sections of the house. I actually bought a piece from these artists up at the Ann Arbor Art Fair in 2014. It was awesome to see them at the Round the Fountain.

A little blue bird - I still haven't decided if I will leave it on Mr. Squiggly
Wiggly or actually hang it. I sort of like it where it is.

An owl in flight

I LOVE dragons - so I thought this was perfect.
I should have taken a back picture because
The back is made from bike chain.

The front side
Mom's purchase - "Artful Dodger" but
"Artie" for short. Mom just loves
his sleepy eyes :)

On Sunday I worked on making beads for the May ABS Challenge piece mom and I have yet to saw out - so it will probably be finished on Sunday :) But hey, better late than never. While I was making beads mom was out in the yard - she hasn't wanted to work in the yard - but I think the yard bug finally bit her on Sunday.

I made two different colors - both have a base of green but I used two different frits. I tried to pull in most of the colors from the May ABS painting colors.

It is hard to see the colors but they turned out awesome - this is before I cleaned the beads. Yes, I know I need to take a picture of them since I have cleaned them.

After I finished making beads on Sunday my cousin and her husband came over. Her husband, Bob, saw the green bracelet when I posted it to Facebook. So, he brought Sandy over to look at the bracelet but Sandy and Bob ended up buying three bracelets. That was a nice surprise - but I think the best part was that we sat for a few hours just talking. It was great to just sit with them and reminisce about our family and things mom and Sandy did when they were kids. IT WAS AWESOME!!!!

On Monday I moved all the sawing supplies from the computer room to the garage. Now that it is warmer out we can work in the garage instead of the little computer room. Plus it is so nice to open the garage and let the sun in and the breeze. Of course we will be roasting in July and August, but it is what it is. I was able to saw out several bowls, and several pendant perimeters. There is a lot to saw out and file and sand, but it should keep us busy for awhile.

I also ended up vacuuming, dusting, mopping, and cleaning the bathroom Monday afternoon. So, yup, I feel like we did accomplished a lot.

Friday, May 22, 2015

30 Words - Flowers

Spring – the bursting of
color from flowers
The smell of fresh cut grass
the joy on mom’s face
when she sees a new
Flower has opened up
for her to enjoy.

Okay - I am not much of an outdoors person any more - mom usually has to drag me kicking and screaming to help her in the yard. But it is well worth it when I see the look of joy on mom's face (as long as I don't pull the flowers that I think are weeds).

The clematis photos are from our front yard - they are located right outside of our front door and I am having a lot of fun taking pictures of them.

If you would like to join 30 Words or see what ever one has to say, head on over to Erin's blog and check it out.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Spring Flowers - Clematis, Poppies, Iris and Daisy

Clematis outside our house

It is spring time - which means flowers, flowers, and more flowers!!!!

 The clematis bush is going to town right outside our front door. Currently one the light purple clematis is blooming but it looked like the dark purple ones started opening up yesterday. So, that means I need to get outside and take pics of those opening.

On Monday I ran over to take pics of flowers in the little hort park. Here are the pics I was able to take:

I hoped that brightened up your day a little bit.

Monday, May 18, 2015

After Action Review of the Brick Street Market Show

If you are still blog hopping for The Art of the Awareness click here.

Mom and I took Friday off to prep more for our show on Saturday, the Brick Street Market in Zionsville. This is what the garage looked like - me spread out on the torching table and mom spread out on tables we had setup to layout the inventory.

Mom finished writing the tags on the inventory and I finished assembling final pieces for the show. And then we ran errands, pulled out all the stuff to load up the car and put up the tent to see how we were going to setup for the show.

Mom and I had put up the tent so we could layout the tables and bring in the grids under the tent. We couldn't have anything sitting outside the tent - so we had to change up the layout a bit. We took a pic of the layout so we could remember it for the show (neither mom and I have good memories anymore - the old age has set in).

This is the tent setup for the show - mom is sitting in the back. At this point in time it wasn't raining - but the rest of the show it rained. Nothing you can do about Mother Nature.

Another look from the back to the front. Right now it is pouring down rain - which you can't see but believe me you could feel :) Mom and I finally broke down and put up the back panel because we had a flood coming in from the back of the tent. We tried to have two openings but that stopped once the back went up.

We also had a slight accident. While mom was walking around she fell. It is good thing she learned how to fall from Judo and Kenpo otherwise I think she would have hurt herself more. Instead she has a nice scrapped knee and a lot of embarrassment. Poor mom - can't take her anywhere.

On Sunday mom and I unpacked the car. Because it was supposed to rain again we put up the tent panels and tent in the garage so it could dry out. We really didn't want the tent to mold. Once this dries up we will put the tables up to dry out the jewelry and then wipe it all down.

So - that was our weekend.

I will complete this post with the last of the jewelry I finished up for the show and a photo a friend sent of a piece she is wearing that we created:

This is our piece from the April ABS Challenge:

Our friend purchased the April ABS Challenge piece and this is a picture she sent of herself wearing it. It is so much fun to see pictures of people wearing our pieces. I think it goes perfectly with the outfit she is wearing. This puts a smile on our faces - knowing our pieces are being enjoyed.

That is it - so - have an awesome week everyone!

Saturday, May 16, 2015

The Art of Awareness Blog Hop

Today is The Art of Awareness blog hop - hosted by the most awesomest Lori Anderson. Lori and Heather are hosting this hop to bring an important message -- the cause you're bringing awareness to, and the handmade bead artisan who made the beads.

Mom and I discussed what word we wanted to choose - let me tell you, I think this was the hardest part - but we finally decided on the word "Dignity". 

Definition of dignity: self-respect, self-regard, self-worth (noun) - the quality of being worthy of esteem or respect

I think mom and I are having a hard time this year in regard to our self-worth. I know it has been difficult for mom since her surgery to get motivated to do things. She is a go getter and being out of commission dampens her mood. Though the doctor said it would take her up to a year to get back to where she was and that depression is a factor of knee replacement surgery.

A friend of ours sent this to mom:
"Your value does not decrease based on someone's inability to see your worth." -Unknown

Mom has that quote in her wallet and I have that on my monitor at work. That quote is to remind ourselves we have worth and we should be treated with dignity - EVEN BY OURSELVES!
As many of you know - I despise drawing or sketching. Well - here is my second attempt at my idea for this piece. I wanted to have a quote stamped on a pendant. I wrote up six different quotes and mom and I laid on her bed deciding on which quote we wanted to use. 

Once we had the quote picked out then it was trying to decide what we wanted to have me create for the lampwork glass beads. I knew I wanted to go from dark beads to lighter beads - so we decided to go black, dark gray, light gray, dark pink to light pink. I also knew I wanted to use SIS (silver ivory stringer) on the beads - both mom and I didn't want dots - so went with lines. Of course all of this planning is on mom's bed with the cats using us as an obstacle course while mom is trying to write.

On the copper, mom drew out lines and wrote the quote out for me so I could go to town on stamping. I also have the sketch next to me to make sure I don't misspell any words. Boy, that was a lot of fun! I haven't stamped anything in almost two years. Though I am sure the cats weren't too happy hearing me hammer the stamps - that work surface is right over their litter box cabinet :)

Next it was mom connecting our awareness bead to the copper pendant. I really love what mom did with the bead - it fits perfectly - the only bad thing is that you can't see the ribbon stamp - but you at least see the word.

Next is laying out the beads on a cookie tray (I love these trays because it is so nice to be able to layout everything and move beads around without us losing the beads) and figuring out what we wanted to use for accent beads. We ended up deciding to use rounded copper discs between the glass beads and seed beads.

It has actually been so nice to work out in the garage again. This is a photo of my work area and then what mom is doing is inventorying all of our pieces for our show at Zionsville, IN today.

So - since you have lasted this long here is what we created:

We don't have a name for this piece yet - though we should be really original and name it "Dignity".

Mom and I decided to not go with a clasp - instead you can take it on and off over your head. 

I love how the lampwork glass beads turned out. I did experiment with four different pink glass rods. Mom and I decided on using two of the pinks in this necklace and I used the other two pinks in a bracelet. I love how the beads go from black, to dark gray, to light gray, dark pink and light pink with pops of copper from the accent beads. Also, the beads are pretty heavy, but it is a nice weight - it has some heft!

Here is a closer look of the pendant I stamped and the bead from Heather. I first put the pendant on our garage cement floor and put some texture on it. Once that was done I stamped the pendant and then sawed out the perimeter. Once the sawing was done I filed and sanded and then put it into liver of sulfur (which we need to buy a new container because I think ours went bad). I left it in the liver of sulfur overnight and then sanded off the darker color and sealed the copper. Once all of that was done then mom wire wrapped the bead from Heather.

So, that was our process of how our piece came about.

Thank you again Lori and Heather for putting this challenge together. It sure was an adventure for mom and I this time around.

Mom and I have a show today - so we won't be able to blog hop until Sunday. This is our first time attending this show - it is over at 5pm but I don't think we will get home until 8pm.

Thank you again for stopping by and checking out our piece for this Awareness Blog Hop.

I will leave you a list of those who are participating and if you can't read the list head on over to Lori's blog because I am sure she has the list posted:


Millican (hostess) (bead artist)
Candida Castleberry
mischelle andrade
Paige Maxim
Laurie  Vyselaar
Marybeth Rich
Alice Peterson
Kim Dworak
Audrey Bélanger
Karen mitchell
Joan Williams
Jean Wells
Ann Schroeder
Gail Accinelli
Tania Spivey
Mallory  Hoffman
Mary K McGraw
Shai Williams
Beth Emery
Catie Doman
Lorelei Eurto Http://
Lee Koopman
Tammy Adams
Katie Nelson
Patty Miller
Chris Eisenberg
Cassi Paslick
Charlee Griffith
Kelli Nelson
Catherine King
Melissa Trudinger
susan Bowie
Jennifer Justman
Cassi Paslick
K Hutchinson
Veralynne Malone
Evie and Beth McCord
Mihaela Georgescu
Rebecca Anderso
Charlene  jacka
Kim Stevens
Susan McClelland
Sally Russick
Gina Hockett
Mona Arnott
Sandi Volpe
Andrea Glick
Janine Lucas
Lori Bowring Michaud
Christie Murrow
B.R. Kuhlman
Lupe Meter
Lucy Bejarano
Stephanie Perry
Elisabeth Auld
Carolyn Lawson
Heather Powers
Katie Hacker
Kepi Rasmussen 
Gail Vanderster-Zwang
Elizabeth Hodges

Thursday, May 14, 2015

30 Words: Inventory

Necklace Inventory - last thing to do

Inventory – the BANE of our existence

It is a necessary evil

But I sure WISH that there were

Inventory fairies that came

Overnight and completed

ALL the work for you.

So - this is what mom has been working on since Saturday morning - inventory. It wouldn't be so bad if we could use our inventory numbers for every show, but we have a couple of shows that you have to use their inventory numbers.

Well - we are prepping for this weekend's show but also for our show in July. We actually got the number we will be, so mom went ahead and inventoried the pieces with those numbers so we are doing it at crunch time in July (very smart mom - there is a reason I keep you around).

So - that is our 30 Words this week. Please head over to Erin's blog and check out 30 Words.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

More Prepping for Show and New Pieces to Share

This past weekend was more prepping for the show - mom was doing inventory - and I was making glass beads for a piece we need to complete for the Awareness Blog Hop on Saturday.

This is the second batch of beads I worked on. Mom wanted a different colored pink so I went digging through our stash and found a couple of rods of different pink. Both mom and I are much happier with these beads - so we will make bracelets out of the other set of beads I had made for the necklace on Saturday - Improvise, Adapt and Overcome!!!

I also stamped a pendant and a bracelet bar - I haven't stamped anything in over a year. I asked mom to grid it all out for me - it still came out a little crooked but we are both happy with the pieces.

I think our liver of sulfur has gone bad - which I didn't think was possible. I had a really hard time getting a patina on these pieces. We have a Viking Knit bracelet that is raw copper that we wanted to patina and then the piece I am using in a bracelet. I even soaked it overnight and didn't get the patina I wanted. I think that is one of the first things we will buy after the show Saturday - more liver of sulfur!

Last night I worked on cleaning the beads and getting the pieces cleaned up from the liver of sulfur. While I was doing that mom was working on inventory and making some earrings and bracelets. Below is what we got made up.

Cuff Polymer clay from Humblebeads

We made the Viking Knit chain and then incorporated a cuff polymer clay piece from Humblebeads.

Cuff polymer clay from Humblebeads

We made the Viking Knit chain and then incorporated a cuff polymer clay piece from Humblebeads.

Mom and I sit together - or I should say I drag mom over - to help me decide on what beads to use as accent beads in between our lampwork glass beads. This is actually a small bracelet with Czech beads, our lampwork glass beads (if you look close there is silver in the blue), and seed beads.

I love how these beads turned out - we used Czech Cathedral beads as accents with seed beads.

Mom and I wanted to make a necklace to go with the piece we created for Sally's Make a Statement Necklace earlier this year, click here to see the necklace. We both love how this came out - I love the jump rings mom did on the bracelet. We are thinking of making a necklace like the bracelet - probably not in these colors, because I am sure everyone is getting tired of those colors.

Mom and I plan on making a few more pieces in the next couple of days before the show on Saturday in Zionsville - the Brick Street Market Show. I will share once we are done creating them. Busy, busy, busy next few days but lots of fun!
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