Sunday, July 29, 2012

New Chapter....

It was hot....

...about 100+ both Thursday & Friday when all the moving took place.  I think I was suffering a little bit of heat exhaustion by Friday night when we finally arrived at our temporary digs!

We'll be staying here for a few months, fixing up this place my husband has been affectionately calling a hovel.  It is actually totally livable-in, just a little small and needs quite a bit of love.   Pretty much the only upside of being here, is the proximity to the beach, and of course it is a stepping stone to getting to our final destination in Massachusetts!!!

I don't think I've picked up a bead in almost two weeks, unless of course, I was moving it into a storage box! 

But now that I'm settling in, I need to make my vision a reality for my Summer Lovin' Kit Challenge!

I have been remiss in reading comments left on my last post, and haven't even opened up my Google reader to catch up on all the blogs I read...so I can't wait to pour a glass of wine a little later and do just that! I also can't wait to do some hopping on the BSBP that had it's first reveal this weekend!  

I hope you will stop by on August 1 to see the reveal and a list of the participants for this challenge!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Moving!!!

Moving is a PAIN!  I mean literally - I'm in PAIN from all the hauling around of boxes and what not!  hahah!  Today is the last day in our house.  I'm sad and excited all at the same time!

Next week, August 1, will be the reveal for the Summer Lovin' Kit Challenge.  Please stop by to see what all the wonderful participants have created!!!  I am so excited we have 19 participants!

In the meanwhile here is my life in pics lately! 







And wait - what's this!?  A bit of delight in the midst of my chaos...Therese (Therese's Treasures ) was traveling through Maryland this past Sunday and detoured for a quick meet up with Maryanne (Zingala's Workshop) and me at our favorite local bead store, Bead Soup!  
 

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Jewelry Designs from Nature Challenge Blog Hop

Several weeks ago, I had the pleasure of being selected to participate in Heather Powers' Jewelry Designs from Nature Challenge!

Heather dreamed up this challenge as a celebration inspired by her book Jewelry Designs from Nature.  "This is a creative blog challenge.  10 winners will be sent a packet and have a few weeks to create a piece of jewelry inspired by their packets."

I received my packet while traveling to set up my temporary housing for the next few months, which just happens to be near......
.
......THE SEA!
 

This package couldn't have been more perfect for the moment I was in!

I received two beautiful coin size pieces, that Heather perfectly created, with starfish on them!  (The pics of my pieces are on a computer that died that week!! But you'll see them as you scroll down below)

We had just been to the bay side of the peninsula the day before, and my son was finding tons and tons of sea glass and gorgeous shells.
Goodness!  Such a serious beachcomber!




So when I got my package, my first thought was to pair it with some of the sea's real treasures that we found the day before...

(Please excuse the blurry phone picture!)

But then, my embroidery mojo just wasn't there every time I came back to this set-up.   So instead, I used the amber sea glass (yes, I do realize that was probably once part of a broken beer bottle....but wow - after all the sea tumbling, it was quite pretty!) to get me going and then I really enjoyed where the challenge took me! There is also slight amber colored translucency to the starfish, and in person it is highlighted well with the amber colored seed beads!



I loved the idea of using pearls with this because of their connection to the sea.  But I also felt compelled to use the sandy colored Swarovski crystals I had on hand, because I love the fantasy of finding a long lost sparkling treasure in the sea! 

Thank you so much Heather, for hosting this fun challenge!  I really enjoyed it and loved that fact that "the sea" was my theme (though frankly I would have loved any of them!!!).  Not only is Heather the author of Jewelry Designs by Nature, but she's also a talented polymer clay artist (her business is Humblebeads) and a contributor on Art Bead Scene.

I know in the weeks to come, I will be working through the other starfish piece.  Maybe even do the embroidery with the shell and sea glass!

In the meanwhile - please check out the other winners that were selected to take part in this challenge!

Sharon Palac
Keirsten Giles
Alicia Marinache
Shelby Foxwell
Lisa Cone
Marlene Brady
Cece Cormier
Amy of Amy Beads
Marlene Cupo

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Humbled!!!

I had quite an honor, TWICE last week!!!  I am blown away to have been awarded the Kreativ Blogger Award by two of my creative and sweet blogger friends, Therese and Ginger.  My heart was warmed by their kind words and I promise to follow the award rules very soon!!  Thank you ladies.


I have been very busy lately, because I am moving.  It's kind of a long drawn out story about our situation - but ultimately we will be relocating from Maryland to Massachusetts by the end of the year.   In the meanwhile, we need to move out of this house by July 28. I am excited to get up to Massachusetts, because almost my entire family lives there...and my best friend of nearly 40 years lives there, and one of my dearest friends from this region just moved there! 

As a general rule, I don't like moving.  Actually, I hate it.  When we first moved into this house, we were a family of five.  My stepdaughters were sleeping here every other weekend and once during the week.  Then one of them moved in full time.  And my son of course also lived here.  But then our oldest of our three moved away 5 years ago.  And the second oldest moved last year.  So now we are a family of three.  We have a house bigger than what we need, and are moving into much smaller living quarters.

I was originally a little annoyed with the colossal mountain of work I was facing.  There is something taking up every shelf, every drawer, and every bit of wall space in this house.  The bottom line is we have way too much stuff.

So I work all day, and then, I make dinner, and then I tackle a space.  So far, I've managed to send 5 trash bags full of clothes to good will, and 11 shopping bags of books to the library.  Last night I started working through my bead stash to see how I could store my stash more efficiently.  Apparently I hadn't been doing a very good job:

 This was just my delica stash and after consolidating colors, I ended up with 42 empty containers!  There may be a bead destashing giveaway in my future!

So now, here's the thing....as much as I hate moving....I'm really starting to enjoy the process of eliminating things we don't need!  We have to downsize, and it feels GOOD!  I even find myself doing it in other areas, I must have unsubscribed to 15 companies yesterday that send me emails too often on things that I'm not een interested in any longer.   And in the kitchen - wow - there's way too much stuff there as well!  Aside from my picking up veggies and fruit at my markets, I don't think I'm going to go grocery shopping until August. 

Right now I'm trying to get every thing I 'need', into one small space in the house.  And all that I need, I seems, is my computer for work, and some files.  And my beads!   So when I complete that task (tonight??), I will more easily be able to tackle the rest of the house.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

My Soup is Here!!!

I AM A LUCKY BEADER!!!!!!

I am excited to once again, be a participant in the Bead Soup Blog Party hosted by Lori Anderson. Lori paired me with Alenka who is a very talented polymer clay artist who lives in Slovenia.  I was away for the week and was delighted to see a package from Alenka in my mail pile when I got home!!! 

Isn't the packaging adorable?!?





And here's what was inside:

oh my goodness!  Look at all of Alenka's handy work!

HOW LUCKY AM I!?!?!!!??!?!?!?!?!

Seriously - I was moved by the gorgeous beads and gorgeous focal and gorgeous clasp in this amazing bead soup!!
 
I just adore the sparkling gold flecks in these little pieces of artwork!
 

And, as if all these wonderful beads weren't enough....


Alenka also included a little something on the side just for me!



Feeling very lucky and very blessed indeed!!!

Did I mention that Alenka is a very talented polymer clay artist??!!!  You should check out her Flickr gallery at Pepita_handmade to see more of her work....and her blog is Pepita handmade.  Our Bead Soup Blog Party reveal date is August 11.  Glad I have plenty of time and hope I can do justice to these pretty polymer pieces!

(P.S.   Speaking of the Bead Soup Blog Party - Lori is doing a magnificent giveaway from her trip to the Bead & Button show.  It's not just a single giveaway - but a chance to have your name drawn to win one of five great giveaways! Check it out!)






Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Happy 4th!

Life has been really busy lately - we are in the process of moving and that is a real pain in the you know what!

But this week we are at the beach which is FUN.  For tonights festivities, I got flag t-shirts for the whole family and decided to make some Independence Day themed jewelry to match.

First off I did some earrings with some simple peyote stars:



I didn't want to stop there and wanted a bracelet too. 

So I thought that Kristen's Pop Up Pearls would be a perfect for some Independence Day themed jewelry.  Each day this week I did a couple components...



Assembly time!!




I was thrilled to see I had some blue stars in my stash before I left for the beach!! 

I also received my inspiration beads from Heather at Humblebeads for the Jewelry Designs from Nature Challenge!  The reveal has been pushed back to the 11th of July....
 And I'm so excited that I was given the sea as my inspiration, since I am so near the sea right now!!  

Be sure to come by on the 11th for the reveal!!!