Wednesday, October 31, 2007


Well, here it is. The night when the veil between the worlds is thin and ghosties and ghoulies walk amongst us. Send kind thoughts to your dearly departed and don't forget to treat the ghosties and ghoulies!

N does not like the picture below of the vampire kitty. She says "Mom, that is not okay!" She didn't like this one much either. Yes, that is my very own little vampire, A. Kids, this is a very good example of when the flash really should be used.
And over here, we have the Jack O'Lantern family. Mine is the not so traditional one. You can click on both of these to see larger, better images.

And lastly, Mommy and A enjoying a beautiful sunny afternoon at Grandma's house. This is much better when days are rosy, if you know what I mean. We go back tonight. A is taking her BFF along. It should be LOTS OF FUN. Just me, T-man, and two very excited tweens. And so, dear goblins, I bid you farewell until tomorrow. Have a fun, safe night!!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Beading, Beading, Beading

Yes, I have been beading. Stitching, stitching, stitching. Everything else has been ignored, as you can see. Hmmmm.

I love this time of year. No, not because of the cooler weather, or the pumpkins, or Halloween (Samhain, thank you). Nope, not because I get to pick candy out of A's bucket. I love this time of year because I get to watch vampire movies almost nonstop. I love a good vampire movie and Sunday I saw one of the most original vampire movies ever. I watched "The Hamiltons". Talk about a new twist on an old genre. Of course, there have been lots of bad vampire movies as well. Just so you know, this is NOT one of my cats. By the way, A has been reading the "Bunnicula" series of books.

We carved pumpkins. If I remember tonight, I will get the pictures of T-man's camera so I can put them up somewhere. Tomorrow, we go back up the MIL's house so A and a friend can trick or treat. It's a nice, safe neighborhood where Ma knows everyone and everyone knows Ma. Plus most the neighbors know my child. I'm glad she gets to experience this particular childhood ritual. So many children miss out. Let me just say we would NEVER let her do this out here.

Okay kids, short post today. I need to get back to work. More tomorrow.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Have A Great Pumpkin Weekend, Charlie Brown!

There was frost on the roofs out here this morning. The thermometer said it was 39 degrees outside when we drove to school!

Today will be filled with running errands, then tonight we go to A's school carnival. Last night, she and I baked a cake for the cake walk and for extra credit (as long as she helped, she gets a 100). I had her dad explain the importance of exact measurements in chemistry. He has first hand knowledge that the difference between 1 1/3 cups of liquid and 1 1/2 cups will cause a cake to become pudding! So she has something to share with the class.

Tomorrow, we go to the MIL's house to carve pumpkins, which is always a messy business. But it's fun, and A gets to spend time with her grandparents (and others). Then Sunday, I do believe we will laze around the house. Want your own pumpkin? Click on the image.

It's a full moon night, with the moon close to the Earth. You might also be able to see the shuttle and the space station. The sky will be clear as a bell, and it's going to be be COLD. I guess our very short summer weather is gone until December! Hah! I actually have a picture of N from second grade, in which she is holding the gingerbread house they made in school for Christmas. She's wearing shorts.

Happy weekend!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Still Ready to Bead!

Yep, it feels like a beady day! The sun is shining. I'll go outside and sit with the kitties for a bit, then come in and bead. It doesn't hurt that there is a Law & Order Criminal Intent marathon on. I just love Vincent D'Onofrio as an actor, and of course the Bobby Goren lean. It's almost as good as David Caruso and the Horatio Cain tilt on CSI Miami! Makes you wonder if those two had the same acting teacher.
Remember, it's good to be Queen! I may have to come up with something else in this nice, rich palette. Until tomorrow, beady buds!

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

On a Roll Today

Okay, I'm on a roll. I'm beading today (not so much yesterday). Have I ever told y'all that I have wonderful friends? Well, I do. And they give good advice.

I have lots of great ideas this afternoon, and I need to write them down. They'll be great kits -- intriguing but not too difficult to execute. So while my brain is functioning this way, I'm going to roll with it and I will return tomorrow!!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Today's Musings Brought to You By . . . .

My warm snuggly bed!!! That's where I would like to spend the day, with my warm snuggly T-man by my side. I even told him he should play hooky and stay home with me today. Brrrrr, kids -- it's nippy outside. Of course, being the hothouse bloom that I am, anything below 60 degrees is too cold. There is a big reason I live in this part of the world -- very little winter weather. And today is the total opposite of yesterday, thank the stars above.

Be warned -- today's musings are EXTREMELY personal.

I beaded yesterday for HOURS. OH . . . MY . . . GOD! It felt like I had not done that in YEARS!! If this weird ADHD side effect doesn't settle down, I may well go truly crazy (as opposed to just make believe crazy). I printed the new pattern (wait til you see), gathered the beads, threaded the needle and away I went. And I don't even like to do peyote stitch! But I'll finish it up today, by golly. Of course, the question then will be "what now?"

There are so many things that have fallen by the wayside during the past two weeks, that I don't know where to go from here. I do not like this feeling of utter chaos hovering around my head. But life is rosy and there are no little aches and pains. So today's question is does the lack of pain, the feeling of lightness and the seemingly shiny day compensate for becoming Scarlett O'Hara and putting things off until tomorrow, because after all, it is another day? Those of you who have your own chemically rosy days, please feel free to offer up your own experience and suggestions. Inquiring minds want to know. And you can be anonymous in commenting.

My biggest concern is that this will affect my creativity to the point that it disappears. I am, after all, defined by that tiny artistic spark, or so it seems. I bead, therefore, I am, n'est-ce pas? I live to create and create to live. Put this into personal perspective: if someone came to you and told you that you could no longer do the one thing that you love to do in this world, no matter how hard you tried, no matter how much you desired it, what would happen to you? And yes, I'm probably being paranoid, or as T-man says, I'm looking for problems that aren't there. Maybe. I just must, being the creature that I am, consider the possibility so I can be prepared should that other shoe drop!

Let me hear from you on this one, rosy glasses or not.

Monday, October 22, 2007

It's a Miserable Day in the Neighborhood

Yuck. It's wet and windy and cold. Yes, I know we need the rain, but why must we always get six month's worth at one time? I spent a week near Cancun one summer. Every morning you could watch the rain come down the shoreline from Cancun on its way to Belize -- a nice, gentle rain that lasted for 15 minutes every day. It was nice, it was soothing. Of course, it wasn't a hurricane, but that's another story.

If you are inclined to surf today, check out The Impatient Blogger and her tales of artistic mistakes. Be warned -- her potty mouth is as bad or worse than mine! But it's a great read.

I've been asked about the new medication. Well, life is rosy with no little aches and pains. But I've developed my own type of ADHD. I cannot stay focused on any one thing for more than half an hour. This is totally bumming me out, folks! So far, all the other side effects are surmountable with a bit of time, but not this. It sucks canal water!

Saturday, we went in search of a rumored air show at the New Braunfels airport, only to find nothing going on. So we drove into NB and ended up at the Market Days in Gruene. May I say that I do not miss doing shows like that? Nope, not at all. And the Gruene show is juried, but it's still the same A&C.

I am going to try to get something beady done today, or something photographed and listed on Etsy. I've got seven pairs of earrings I made before I started the new medication. They are fabulous, and just waiting for their debut. I have no idea why I can't just get it done. If anyone has any tips, let me know! So long, farewell -- at least until tomorrow.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Musings on Wednesday

Hee, hee -- Pam updated her site. She did so yesterday, when the weather was exactly as she described. But this morning, the sky fell down again -- pretty near zero visibility when I took A to school. But now the sun is shining brightly, trying its best to burn a hole in the gray blanket of fog.

Today, I am finishing up new patterns that will go into new kits. I will print them out, pick out the beads, and distribute them to my lovely bead angels. Therefore, I'm trying to stay in a creative mode, which is a bit difficult with the new medication. It seems I've developed a bit of ADHD, just like T-man!! This bothers me a somewhat, because I don't want to be MORE than I can be, just ALL that I can be. And in that vein, I leave you with this quote from Bill Cosby: I said to a guy, "Tell me, what is it about cocaine that makes it so wonderful," and he said, "Because it intensifies your personality." I said, "Yes, but what if you're an asshole?"

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Tuesday, Tuesday

HAH! It is to laugh! (quoting Daffy Duck)

It did NOT rain here yesterday. I'm sure it rained all around us, but not here. Guess what A is going to be for Halloween. Yup, Hannah Montana, her idol. *sigh* And N keeps saying she's going to be Elmo, but I don't know about that. I will be the same thing I am every year --- MONSTER MOM --- "stop running, don't eat that til I check it, don't go to the houses without lights, STOP RUNNING, no you cannot have candy yet, yes you have to go to school tomorrow, STOP THAT RUNNING!!!!!". Yessir, Monster Mom strikes again.

Is it not fab?? Can't you imagine a pair hanging from your very own dainty ears?? Coming soon!!

Much to do today! More caffeine to drink, more photos to shoot, more errands to run, and beads to sort. Hasta la vista, baby!

Monday, October 15, 2007

Monday, Monday

Ya'll are so cool! Thank you so much. You have no idea how much it means to me to know that you actually come read my blog!

There was a time, not so long ago, when the days of the week just kind of melded together into one big blob and I never knew what day it was without asking. It wasn't drudgery that caused this. It was constant bead work (not to be confused with beadwork) without breaks. I'm not sure if that is a good thing or a bad thing. But I have never, ever liked Mondays. I have always thought three day weekends would be wonderful. I could easily start my week with Tuesday. But then would the Mamas & Papas actually have written "Tuesday, Tuesday"?

Today, I'm shipping off patterns and hedgehogs. Then I am finally putting projects together for the angels. Sorry ladies, last week was pretty much a wash. I have not forgotten you. AND I must take more photos for the Etsy shop and the website. I will also take a photo of the earrings I made for myself (yes, moi). Who knows what other mischief I'll get into. Maybe yoga, maybe yogurt (I haven't had breakfast yet).

And it's supposed to rain most of the day. After all, today is Monday, right?

Sunday, October 14, 2007

All is Well in Beadland

I'm sitting here printing patterns to send off to the distributor, Threaded Needle Designs. And since I have to watch the printer, I thought I would make a tiny update.
I really appreciate the notes of concern. A is fine. In fact, we are all fine. I've just had days of nothing but errands, which left little time for bead business. So I decided to make a rare weekend post. I'm trying really hard to take weekends off, but you know how that goes. As I've said before, I hate it when real life interferes -- doctor's appointment for me, doctor's appointment for A then spending the rest of the day at the grocery store, the pharmacist, the auto supply store, and the office supply. Then driving to San Antonio Friday because I did not have enough zip lock bags (a BIG necessity) on hand. And believe me, it was drive there, get out, pick them up, get in, drive back. So I pretty much had three days in a row with very little time for bead related stuff. And that is what's happening in my little corner of the world. How about you?

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Wasted Day

Okay, maybe not an entirely wasted day. I had an appointment with the rheumatologist this morning. Keep in mind that we live smack dab in the middle of Nowhere, so any specialist is pretty much in Austin. Except for this one who is in New Braunfels. She was the only doctor treating fibromyalgia that I could find without having to drive all the way to San Antonio. My eyes have suddenly begun to blur and I cannot even look at the TV without my glasses on. This has been very troubling to T-man, especially since the wonderful medication she put me on specifically for the fibro has a tendency to affect your eyes in a very bad way but, I found out today, only in very high dosage. Long story short, that medication is not the culprit (thank the stars above). But T, you might ask, what is causing the blurry vision?? Well, I'll tell you ---- it's the wonderful INEXPENSIVE medication she put me on to help me sleep. *sigh* The upside is that I'll be able to see again in a few days and perhaps get back to what I love to do, which was rather difficult lately. And she did give me samples of something new and we'll see how it goes.

I was hoping to put some more earrings in the Etsy shop, but it may have to wait until Friday. I am taking A to the doctor tomorrow. She has a very bad cough and it's keeping her up at night, poor baby. And she's miserable. Fortunately, this doctor is in Buda, which is much closer, but I will still feel like I've wasted an entire day doing things other than beading.

Don't you hate it when real life interferes with your fun??

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Marveling at the Marvelous

We are marvelous.

I am acquainted with quite a few bead artists. These are people who make art beads -- lampwork, polymer, PMC, etc. I marvel at their ability to take a rod, glob, slab, whatever, and turn it into a work of art that I can hold in my hand and then set to music with my tiny beads. If not for them, a lot of my artistic pieces just would not be. I know that they all have a box of not-so-perfect pieces. I know that they sweat, literally and figuratively, trying to create their visions. I marvel that these artists can work wonderfully well under pressure. They can, at the last minute, churn out a table full of marvelous things. I cannot do any of this, but it is marvelous.

It takes me days to chart a graph for a patterned piece, weeks if I work from a picture. There is a lot of tweaking, a lot of refining, and then if I'm really smart, there is a test strip to make sure the colors work. This is not marvelous, this is time consuming. But for the customer who purchased the pattern, the beaded piece which is the end result can be marvelous.

For the art pieces that don't follow a pattern graph, there is still a lot of angst involved. Again, there is a test strip. Then there is the ripping something apart three or four times before it becomes what I have envisioned. Sometimes a mound of thread or bent wire or culled beads is the only testament to days of blood, sweat and tears. But in the end, when it's placed in the display case at the show, and someone walks by and simply says "marvelous", I marvel that they are talking about a little piece of me.

For kits, there is the sending off of a bag of beads and scant instructions to an angel who takes my vision and stitches life into it. Weeks of work and rework go into these. This is not marvelous, this is exhausting. But for the stitcher who must have that special kit, the end result can be marvelous.

Perhaps the most marvelous thing of all is the look on someones face when they find that perfect art bead, or that perfect pattern, or that perfect kit, or that perfect piece of jewelry. And better still, they marvel that we, humble bead makers and beaders, are able to create marvelous works of art from a bit of nothing.

We are marvelous!

Monday, October 8, 2007

Bead Musings on a Cloudy Day

Yes, it's cloudy, definitely overcast. And it's a week into October! When did that happen? And I feel that I have accomplished so little this past summer. Oh well, I guess I'll just have to buckle down and work harder this fall.

If you happened to visit my web site, you saw that I'm listing new items in my Etsy shop, and so far I've got ONE new listing in there. Hah! It is to laugh. I always forget exactly how much work can be involved in a listing. Plus, in the scant two months that I've been listing, I have learned soooo much about my camera and taking good photos. I'm still working on that. On the upside, I have made 11 pair of earrings in the past week. Of course, one went to me (to go with my Sheherazade beaded necklace), N took one pair, and A got a pair. Not bad, considering working with wire is NOT a thing I enjoy. After I get the pictures finished, I'll get back to my tiny seed beads and mailing projects to the angels. The new beading kits will be awesome, if I may say so. There will be more blues, some reds, my favorite creamy ceylon 203, rosey golds, and I'll try to work some purples in there just for Juls. And those are just the kits for February. There will be more for June.

So, keep checking the Etsy shop and let me know what you think. By the way, you can click on "Add Seller to Favorites" without an Etsy id. You will show up as a secret admirer. Or get an id and start you holiday shopping early! This may well be what I do this year. Okay, fellow beaders (and other readers), it's back to the camera for me. By the way, it just started raining out here on the prairie. Yuck.

Friday, October 5, 2007

It's Friday

What can I say? It's Friday. N and A have a three day weekend. Well, N has a bit of a three day weekend. She is going to help T-man with a big job this weekend, and make herself a little bit of money. She has signed up to be a substitute teacher. She even got her ID card for the school district. N is home today, at least until her sweetie gets home. I'll be a brunette tomorrow. HAH!! I love it! The only color that never worked was blonde.

What is T-man doing today? He is skeet shooting with his new boss. I kid you not! And he is getting paid to do so. Is it any wonder he loves this new job?? Oh sure, they are watching a tank installation in Marble Falls, but afterwards? Skeet.

These are the earrings I made for A. She wore them yesterday, proudly I might add. Even her teachers complimented her on them. They are vintage black givre with the tiniest bit of white at the top. I put them on the same oxidized copper head pins and copper colored niobium wires. They are only 1 1/4 inches long. Just right for her 10-year old self! And they are much darker in person -- that flash is so bright!

I think I'll whip up some earrings this weekend to add to the Etsy store. According to Etsy statistics, shoppers like Monday, with Tuesday being a close second, around noon and then again around 9:00 p.m. my time. Those are traditionally the best selling times. Go figure. But I know when I'll be listing! I'll probably *gasp* bead a bit, also!

And so my beady friends, thus ends another week in my exciting life! Happy beading, and remember -- don't sweat the petty stuff, and pet the sweaty stuff!!

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Beady Mornings

Okay, it’s quiet in the house as N still has not emerged from her room. The kitties are still in their room and I have GMA on the TV, but the volume is low, and the only real sound is the dishwasher, which is not overly loud. And I’m sipping my coffee (yes, bad grammar there), just kind of enjoying my morning surf, which is what I do. I hop around from this site to that blog, clicking on links, just kind of exploring the world wide web, getting into the groove for the day, seeing what's happening in the world outside my doors, checking on what other creative souls are saying and doing.

So, I'm hunting for something that Pam mentioned (we've already exchanged several emails this morning -- oh man, deja vu!). I have a lot more time to surf and explore than she does, and I like it that way as some of my taxes pay part of her salary! Okay, picture this -- I'm sitting at the computer desk, in my jammies (that's how I work, okay?), sipping my java, looking for treasure. I Google, find a good possibility, I click and suddenly this HORRENDOUS NOISE emits from my computer!!! It sounds like a rabbit dying. If you don't know how that sounds, it's like an alien scream. This is coming from my computer!! Apparently, to get you in the mood to buy the beach themed product on this site, the designer decided to use the sounds of the Gulf coast. It was a sea gull crying LOUDLY, and now I'm listening to the gentle sounds of the surf. Oh, how apropos for my web surfing. Thank God I didn't have coffee in my mouth at the time

Remember the earrings I made that N claimed? Look below in Bead Musings. And you remember that A asked if I could make a smaller pair for her? Well, I made them last night. When she gets home today I'll take pictures.

I'm going through one of those periods where I have tons of ideas, and I try to write them all down. But I don't feel a need to pick up needle, thread and beads for some reason. I know this will pass, as it always does, but I feel this tremendous guilt for not doing what I should be doing.

But I will leave you with inspiration for your day. I give you a pot bellied pig, with thanks to Pam (who did not make this, but she did find it on eBay!).

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Art Bead Scene Compliments

Oh my stars, if you scream in cyberspace, someone will hear you. I've been paid a cyber compliment by the lovely beaders at Art Bead Scene . If you haven't visited via my link over there on the right, take a little time today to inspect the eye candy made by some very talented art bead, well, artists! I found them via Heather Powers, with whom I first chatted years ago simply because people would get the names of our business confused: Bumble Beads and Humblebeads. I would get calls for her, she would get calls for me, and so on. So click on over there for a bit and then hop back over here. And many thanks to Elaine Ray for the compliment! I've added a link for blog over there on the right, also.

Today is T-man's birthday, and his third day on the new job, which he is just loving. I'll just be glad when our status quo returns and he can relax a bit. I think we need to plan a motorcycle ride here pretty soon. The weather has been just right and looks to stay that way for a while. This is a picture of us on our last ride in August. And no, the jacket is not hot, but it is armored in case of a fall.

N and I are off to the store to buy cake mix, ice cream and a card. So, dear readers, fellow beaders and assorted other beings, I'm signing off until tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Bead Musings

Bead musings are what this blog is supposed to be about, right? I suppose that every once in a while I should stick to the topic. Last night I found a really cool quote that I wanted to post today. Then T-man needed to work on the computer. Did I bookmark it? No. Did I write it down? No. Does my med-fuzzed brain remember it? Oh, hell no. And the short term memory lapse is really irritating, so I'll step back and punt.

While making my morning rounds yesterday, I stopped at Yellow Dog Beads where Pam had posted "I admire all those people who can officially 'blog' - just can't imagine the commitment it must take." For me, it has become fairly easy, especially with the kids gone during the day. I am here, by myself, with only the cats for company, and they don't care what I think or say. So, this is my outlet for conversation. It's great to have a one-sided conversation with no one arguing. I have discovered that I have gotten more visitors to my web site and my Etsy shop since I've started blogging, and that was the main purpose. It's become a very creative outlet. It's like bouncing ideas off of a big group, only no one ever disagrees with me! Oh, and never mind the fact that I am a frustrated novelist at heart. More on that later. I will admit that I had to force myself to sit down and type something the first week, but now it's a little easier. I'm still paranoid that no one reads this. If you scream in cyberspace can anyone hear you?

Then I surfed over to Kate's journal where she posted "Most people choose a life of art from a perspective of freedom, and the desire to have a life structure that isn't fraught with the playground politics of most offices. But get a Guild together, or some kind of power structure, and before you know it you have people who are meticulously recreating the very environment that most of us chose not to participate in in the first place." Okay, office politics were not the reason I did not reenter the workforce after A was born, but I certainly don't miss them. Later, I held offices in two different organizations, at the same time, and I wholeheartedly agree with what she says. T-man once told me if I ever ran for office in any club/society/guild again, he would divorce me! But I'm not sure I agree with her statement that a life of art entails freedom. There is still "WORK" to be done. It's not all fun and games, kids. In fact, very little of it is. Being a self-employed anything takes drive, commitment, organization, self-discipline and enormous motivation. It also entails being able to say "NO" firmly. I've been self-employed for ten years now, and I'm still working on all of those. I'm also still struggling with the frustration of dealing with people who believe that since you are at home, you're not doing anything important. By the way, I don't think that will ever go away.

But neither of these is the quote I seek. So let's talk about my muses, The Beads. As I told you yesterday, I am on an earring kick. I don't know why, it just seems to be the thing to do. I should be sending instructions, patterns and beads out to the angels, and I should be designing more projects for them to stitch. After all, February is just around the corner (I have a big to-do in February). And June is right behind February (I have the EGA Regional Seminar), and I need lots and lots of fabu kits, bead packs, instructions, etc.

But no, I have this need to churn out a bunch of dangly things right now. The first pair has already been grabbed up by N, although she will tell you differently -- her story is that I "offered" them to her. My story? I was holding them up for an opinion, only to be met with an open hand, beseeching me to bestow the pretties in it. I bought these beads specifically to put them on these oxidized head pins and ear wires. Then A wants to know if I can make her a smaller pair of dangly earrings. And she also wants the oxidized wires so they will look almost like the ones her big sister has. So, today is an earring day. More pictures tomorrow!

Monday, October 1, 2007

Counting Beads, I Mean, Sheep . . .

I am soooooo very tired. I have three MDs suggesting that I do a sleep study. I know what the results will be. The study will show that I DON'T SLEEP. I am considering having one done, though.

All my pewter spiders have been shipped off to their new owners. I thoroughly enjoyed my reign as Queen of the Arachnids at my Etsy shop. I've got another cute something to start listing. I'm also on an earring kick and will put some pictures up soon.

Now, back to the stitch I can do in my sleep. I finally figured out that the problem was not in the stitching, but in my perception of the instructions. I was looking at my drawings, reading my words, using the correct number of beads. But my brain wanted all the beads to line up nice and straight with all the columns of equal height, regardless of what the instructions and drawings said! I am abandoning this project, although not because I couldn't stitch it. I did finally get it right. I'm abandoning it because as a short length, it's fine. As a longer length, say a necklace, it's too stiff. So today I will move on to something else.