So, here I am.....

The girl that said she'd never blog. The far from computer savvy girl that is always up for a challenge despite a serious lack of time.My blog goals. Do I have blogging goals? Hmmm, I guess I should. So I pledge to be funny, lighthearted, not vent or complain to much and maybe just maybe share a crumb of wit and wisdom on occassion.I will most likely chat about etsy, my addiction and muse. the incredible artsists and friends I have found in a community that oozes with creativity, friendship, support and a home for all things handmade.You will hear me ramble about the insanity of my life including my 3 boys, ages 12, 16 and 53. Yes, that last one I am married to, but trust me, he is just as much boy as man. After 17 years of marriage I find myself raising him along with them. Then again, he would probably say the same of me at times. I will often speak of friends I would go to the ends of the earth for and a family that more often than not defines dysfunction. Then again, I strongly believe a functional family is the stuff legends are made of.I am a lover of music of all kinds and not so much the TV ( except maybe Glee). I have an addiction to handmade glass, especially venetian and lampwork beads as well as unique pottery. I have made a concerted effort to tame my jewelry fetish with my own creations which can be seen at you haven't figured out by now, I can jabber my jaws and my fingers as if someone could care what I have to say.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Black Friday

Oh, the shame of almost 2 months without a blog entry. As I hang my head in shame, I remind myself not to wonder why I have no followers. I give them nothing to read. No need to do the math there. absolute zero is absolute zero. ha!

So, as I sit here, coffee in hand, tummy still full from the fabulous feast, I gaze out at the rising sun and think, why? why, oh why am I awake? If I had planned to mingle amongst the crazies at Best Buy or walmart or some other soul sucking retailer, I wouldn't have been able to drag my tryptophaned ass to the shower much less out the door. As it is, I have nowhere to go and a goal of creating jewelry and some Christmas spirit from the comfort of my slippers and robe and yes, I am awake at 5am!

I am rationalizing this insane phenomena as a subconscious need to please my customers by promoting my Black Friday sale. I have painstakingly adjusted all 190+ shop items to reflect free shipping. Yep, Merry Christmas, Happy Hannukah, Joyous Ramadan, Solstice Greetings, whatever it is you choose to celebrate, I honor you with merriment and free stuff. Free shipping, free gifts on orders over $100 and discounts on qualifying orders. Woot for you.
So, Run.... grab those slippers, pour a cup of coffee and grab the mouse. Stake your claim in the virtual line of shoppers hunting for the great deals. Just do it from the comfort of your couch.

and remember............BUY HANDMADE.................always

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Recovery Time

Seems to be my motto lately. As I sit here like a sloth, recovering form a wedding that went to late in the night last night. I have to say, it was one of the most fun weddings I have attended in some time. The bride was gorgeous (aren't they all) and the crowd a real treat. Dinner was not only delicious but entertaining. Watching 80% of the guests try to figure out what that huge head of roasted garlic on their plates was, it was even better to watch them figure out just what to do with it. I do have to say, watching that much perfectly delicious sweetness go to waste on cleared plates was a sin. Foodies everywhere sighed a universal cringe at such shameful waste of what I like to call, liquid gold.
That Hussyfest was something else. Took me a good week to recover from all the laughter and good times. I'm not sure my boys (all 3 of them) will ever recover from such an unprecedented level of estrogen in this house. There is definitely great truth to the laughter is the best medicine mantra though. My lack of stress for more than a week afterwards was savored every second. I do believe doctors should prescribe a hussyfest for every woman once a year.
My life is slowly returning to normal. More and more days working every week, bitch work piling up, fighting for time to do the things I love, being a mom and a wife 24/7, and looking long into the not so distant future and preparing to find a less stressful way to approach the holidays. The weather is cooling, the pool has closed, the garden is bare, the flowers are saying and I know n my core it's a handful of days before a frost hits.

I'm NOT ready. Not sure i ever will be.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

The Hussies are Coming, The Hussies are Coming!

I am beside myself with excitement. It seems they are too. What started out as a friend coming in town for a craft fair has blosomed into a full frontal Hussyfest.
Let me give you the 411.
Somewhere back in spring of '07, the forums were a dark and nasty place (somethings never change). There was bullying and snarkiness and trainwrecks by the dozens (see, I told you). The fallout was really starting to get to some. A quck-witted and saucy gal by the name of Karmarox decided to send a message. That message rang hard and fast to many and the "hussy" threads have been ringing the bell ever since.
Many a friendship has been born of the threads. Discussion of etsy, family, politics, food, drinks, sex and life's stresses has become a safe haven from the outside dangers of the forums and a common thread to all that stop in. There is even the occasional Cabana Boy sighting, hence the *tittering*
As time passed, Hussies traveled. Some more than others. Some to more exotic locations than others but it was always a topic of discussion which of course led to Hussy Hook-ups (out of the gutter now, I'm old. It doesn't mean THAT!) and eventually what could only be deemed as Hussyfest (04/08), that which legends are made of.
So, when Abitabite asked was there room at the inn, I jumped at the opportunity to help her out for Renegade and crossed my fingers she would be accepted. I mean, let's face it, you get to meet an Aussie with a southern drawl with a trunk full of prickcushions, you don't waste time thinking it over. The news leaked slowly and before you knew it, Hussyfest Part Deux: The Renegade Hussies formed.
In less than 10 days, my house, beds, floors, and couches will be maxed out. The liquor will flow, the laughing will be constant and friends will bond.

This is your National *titter* alert system, bringing you a severe *Titter* warning for the Chicagoland area for September 10th thorugh the 15th. Be prepared for numerous aftershocks, possibly strong, for weeks afterward.

If you have the gumption, you can experience a Hussy live and in person at the Renegade Fair or walking the streets of Chicago. Trust me, you'll know her when you see her and you'll never be the same.


Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Trust Me, I've Been There

It seems I count my years in summers. Being an eternal kid at heart, life is all about the freedom of summer. Screw that pile of laundry and toilet scum that is the envy of every Shell station west of the Mississippi, dammit, the pool water is 85°! Trips to the beach, vacations, swimming, sun and just plain fun are where it's at. Okay, it used to about where the boys were, now it's just where the dishes aren't.

Lathering up the sunscreen, hitting the pool and realxing seems to come with a tad more guilt year after year but I am still able to push my way through and be a total sloth now and again. Having that back yard pool helps a little, despite being the coldest summer on record for Chicago, I managed a few good days.

We may still get a handful of hot, sunny, sweltering days, yet it feels as summer is over. Today, my baby started high school. Summer school and soccer practice served to ease me in as much as him, but today it was official and I am OLD! OMG! High School! When did that happen? I ask myself, did I prepare him? Will he handle it? In a last ditch attempt, I sent him off with a few tricks and some sage advice for the first week of school:

yes dear, that 8x11 canary yellow schedule in your hand = a stamp on your forhead that says "Freshman" to every bully this side of the tracks

No, there is no elevator in the school, please don't spend your lunch $$ on a pass

yes, that upperclassman sending you to the pool on the 4th floor is a bone. There IS NO 4th floor

trust me, learn the school fight song. It's only a matter of time

you will not get from 2nd fl bio to 3rd fl locker to locker room and then PE class, dressed and ready in 5 minutes. it's just not physically possible. come up with a better plan

have fun, explore your curiosities and be your own person (even when the entire school is wearing the same Hollister hoodie.

Most of all, remember and believe me when I say, I did this once. The more things change, the more they stay the same. Be a risk taker and believe what I say once in a while that I am not a total idiot.

I love you, my son. Go, enjoy your life as a "big kid"

Saturday, August 8, 2009

The Glory Train

has a new passenger today. My friend has boarded for his final destination. I will not say good bye to him, only so long. If I am as lucky in the future as I was in this life, we will meet again. I know I'll find him, no other light will ever shine as bright. I will recognize his giggle, be prepared with a high five and once again be treated to his infectious smile.
Breathe easy my friend. Run with abandon, dance with the angels and reach out your arms as they hold the air you breathe as deeply as effortlessly as the wind, you have the strength of 10,000 men and the admiration of countless others.

Thank you for touching my life, sharing your soul and making me a better person for having known you.
Brian, my friend, Rest in Peace.

There is something rare and special
about a person who always makes you feel good
without even trying
There is something magical in a smile that talks

There's a lingering warmth in laughter
that comes so easy that nothing else
seem to matter
The ability to touch people without
having to reach out
a simple understanding of hearts

There's nothing more refreshing
than coming across such a person in your life
and nothing so appreciated as being able
to call him your friend

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Stop, no Go, Feed the Birds..

Or let them bathe, it really doesn't matter when you have one of these lovely, versatile, "green" contraptions.

Well, maybe contraption isn't the best word to describe these feeder/baths from redyellowandblueink but the bottom line is, they are awesome.
Bright, cheery, colorful and recycled. Even the packaging is reused and enviromentaly friendly. How kind these are to the earth in so many ways. You can't help but feel good about buying one, using one, giving one.......If that's not enough, part of your purchase is donated to the Audobon Society. I just can't seem to find a downside.
Be sure to check them out as well as Jenny's many creations and vintage finds. A true delight

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

These are a Few of my Favorite Things

Sing it with me........
I may have mention these before and I may mention them again. Bottom line is, they really are my favorite things and sometimes I just can't get enough of them.
It's summer, it's hot, the pool is inviting and I become easily distracted (or hard to motivate, you choose). However, I can always be persuaded to mix a batch of these.

and like the pied piper of vodka, I am forever turning someone on to the addictive libation. It may look pretty, but it's got a punch and even men love them. They're not a sip, suck, swirl and swallow as they appear.

Well, there goes that focus of mine. Off to the martini well. I'll have to talk about my other favorite things another day.
**shake, shake**

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Frustrations Left and Right

We are all frustrated with the weather. That's for sure. Last night felt more like October than July.
We have had more rain than I can remember in a long time. Lake Johnson, kids canoeing through the yard type rain. A good solid week of killer heat to follow. Of course it was the week I was at a show, on the pavement, under a tent, feet in the ice chest (trust me, I was being polite by not offering those few and far between customers a cold drink). Now, and since (of course), cool, cloudy, rainy, blah, blah, blah.
BBQ for the 4th, poured rain. Plans for Great America, poured rain. Friends over to swim, poured rain.
I'm beginning to believe we should have bought an Ark and not a pool.

So, tomorrow the in laws start arriving. The weather is better and headed up in the 80's and beyond for at least the next week. Yeah! We're thrilled. Finally, the pool will warm up again (see, the last time the water got int he 80's and even hit 90, of course, I was at that stinking, and I literally mean stinking in so many ways, show and no one could use the damned pool. No adult home and I was gone 14 hours/day). So, with excitement, we check the water temp, 82°, great! Pull back the cover, test the water and all looks good (on paper). In person, not so much! Cloudy water. SOB!
We may be new to pools, but I spent many a year as a lifeguard and around pools. I know cloudy = algae and algae = frustration. Lots of frustration. and NOT lots of swimming.

So, warm weather, sunshine, warm water does not equal (need to look that symbol up) swimming.
end rant/ off to work on pool.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009


Swine Flue was going to keep me away fromthe opportunity to personally ahnd over this diploma.

Not much more to say. Party planning, end of year activities, mom and dad descending on us have foiund me perched on the precipous for what seems like an eternity. Then to have the flu make it's way through the school and take it's toll on our house too was the last straw. Needless tosay, handing over that diploma was the sweetest for so many reasons.
Now, summer

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Taking the Plunge

well, eventually, we hope. The pool purchase is done, installed, finally full of water (can't wait to see that bill) and up and running. Now, if the weather would cooperate we might be able to swim without contracting hypothermia. It will be our luck to have a cool summer (like those snowless winters after you break down and spring for the big ass snow blower).
As with any major experience, there were lessons learned. First off, it's like buying a boat. The day after you buy it, you wish you had a bigger one. Of course, no matter how savvy a buyer you think yourself to be, the salesman still gets you in ways you are NOW wise to and no matter how many times you learn this lesson, you still need the refresher course; the cost is never the cost. The extras involved always cost as much as the initial purchase.
After all that, still, it's worth it. The mud pit of a backyard (after burying electric wires), the headaches of getting it all set up, the outrageous cost of said wire (now I know why it's the hot item to steal from construction sites), blah, blah, blah..........I still believe that hot, stifling, humid til you feel choked day will come and all will be forgotten as I float in the cool water, drink in hand and relax in the comfort and privacy of my own back yard..............................................
..............and dream of the next expenditure (deck, landscaping, pool house, toys and of course a rugged blender that can withstand the elements :)

Monday, May 25, 2009

Summer and Sore

What a weekendd! I never plant anything before Memorial Day. Many plant at Mother's Day, but being a lifelong Chicagoan, I am well aware of the late May frosts and cold soil. Outside of Pansies, which I love, I hold out for a touch of color until we are fairly sure the frosty nights are a thing of the past.
This does make visits to the garden center a bit more challenging. Things are more picked over, the stores are much more crowded and I get overwhelmed with getting everything in the ground or potted quickly. Usually I can spend a few weekdays shopping and browsing, thinking of color combos and what I want where. Not this year. Time is not my friend this year. Graduation and a few other obligations have put me on the fast track. Thus, I found myself at the garden center not once, not twice, but 3 times this weekend. Memorial Day Weekend. Busy as hell, everyone is shopping for plants weekend.
Oh, My, God!!!!!!!

Now I sit, enjoying the plantings, the water fountains, the perennial garden and the deck with a nice glass of red. and the rain. :(

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Fun Run

Not two words I usually use in the same sentence. Walk yes, run........not so much!

Well today was the first annual Fun Run at Culver Elementary. Can I just say, it was incredible. A full community event. The perfect storm converged on the field like nothing the likes of Culver has ever seen before.

80+ teachers/staff
540+ kids
dozens of volunteers
massive donations from local businesses
help from the park district, teen center and even a news reporter.
85 degree weather
blue skies
the jazz band playing The final countdown and I can fly
The pledge was recited, the anthem sang and Bam, off they were in full fanfare.

1/4 mile, 1/2 mile, 1 mile, 2 mile and 5K walks and runs. There were medals, music, and tons of sun! A warm spring day filled with spirit, energy and determiation.
It was heartwarming to see such teamwork, commaraderie and inspiration. I was overwhelmed. really.

Great job by all.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Been a Long Time

It seems I have neglected blogging this month. Why is it that the times you need to blog the most, you don't. Time, I guess. The school year is coming to an end and though it is always busy and hectic, I must say, having a graduate makes it all the more intense. Add party planning, end of year activities, out of town guests and prepping for the High School into the daily routine and things just seem to spill over everywhere.
The excitement and the exhaustion go hand in hand. I must say all the project type work assigned to the kids full of spring fever and 8th grade-itis is no help either. I really do think the theory of keeping them focused and engaged with such things s a misnomer. The end result is just stress, stress and more stress.

I ave taken to long walks every morning with Gonzo. This has been a healthy task on so many levels. Cardio, stress reduction, decrease apetite, more conscious food choices and the chance to enjoy the spring blooms and sunny mornings. I'm still working on the clearing my head part. There's just nowhere to move all that stuff.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Feeling a little Poetic

or maybe more limmerick (ish)

The Ode to Bitchwork

Here I sit on the etsy forum
Trying to maintain my decorum
Bitchwork calls from every room
I really should pick up a broom

Site help, business and etcetera
I stop to read of all the frettia
I hear of others getting the ban
And really should wash pots and pans

The laundry calls, the bills need paying
A maid would be nice, I’m jes sayin’
Thoughts of dinner and its not even lunch
Promos on etsy, I need a bunch

Closets need cleaning, the dog needs a bath
Only so many hours, you do the math
Scrubbing toilets, shampooing the rugs
Oh, look there’s a new thread in bugs

Vacuum the carpet, make the bed
But I’d much rather start a new forum thread
Spring is here, the windows need washin’
But there’s “Dildo in the road”, proceed with caution

The dust is so thick, you can write your name
Doing bitch work all day really is lame
The truth of the matter is it’ll never get done
As long as the dang computer is on

But if I don’t do it, no one will
Can’t someone on etsy, invent a pill?
Afterall, it’s no secret, I’m better at craftin’
Than I’ll ever be at pillow battin’

So this is my fate on a Friday morn
Bitchwork it is so I avoid scorn
Cooking, cleaning, laundry and more
But beware cause someday I will even the score

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Beautifully Clean!

It's been way to long since I featured a favorite on this blog. Well, this one is definitely worthy of a shout out. Enchantingsoapfavors is one of my latest, greatest finds. I recently ordered some of these delicous soaps for Easter and what a hit! I chose lavendar and the scent was divine. The packaging exquisite and the soap itself, way, way, way to gorgeous to ever actually use (IMO). Perfect for a beautiful display, a lovely scent and a conversation piece. I just can't get over them.

I don't know about you, but I have had several ocassions that left me pondering the perfect little parting gift. Wedding and baby showers, special parties, hostess gifts and this is it. OMG! So much better than a bag of Jordan Almonds, and easier on the hips. I only wish I would have discovered these 20 years ago for my own wedding.

So, check her out. You are sure to be amazed at these treasures.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009


Today could be my last day as a school board member. Then again, it could begin my 3rd term. Municipal elections are today. Low turn out will probably be a problem but the truth is, these are the eelections that matter. These candidates determine the quality of our daily lives. From bus service to art classes to library services and the size of classrooms, these people make decisions on our behalf that effect us daily.
Sure, the big ones matter, but don't think the little ones don't. These people can move your cheese! So, if you have a local election in your area, take the time and cast your ballot. It's not only your right, it's your responsibility!

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Selling for a Good Cause

Tomorrow is April 1st (and DS#2's 11th birthday), but that's not really the reason for this post.
This is no April Fool's joke either. It's a great sale for a good cause. What more could you ask for. The entire month of April, I will be holding a sale in my shop. 10% off all purchases will benefit Culver School and their efforts to raise money for the purchase of an electronic sign.
If you've read my bio or learned anything about me over the years, its that education is one of my passions. I have been very involved in the school for 9 years now. It's no secret that times re tough and money is tight. Schools, especially in our area (taxcaps) are feeling the pinch more than ever. Every cent needs to be spent maintaining programs and providing quality opprtunities for all of our kids. Communication with families and the community is an everpresent concern. What better way to get out important messages than an electronic marquee. How to pay for such an addition to the communication arsenal is another story. Thus, the birth of this fundraiser. The extra benefit of seeing so many groups and people come together for a common purpose, building teamwork and enhancing realtionships is just the icing on the cake.
So, here goes!
Make a purchase and simply write the word "Culver" in the note to seller section. That's it! Done! 10 % of your purchase will go to the school fund for the purchase of the sign. It doesn't get any simpler than that!

More you say? You want more? How about this?! Etsy, being the great, supportive community it is, has seen several other artisan shops step up to the plate and join in. They too are offering great deals in their shops and supporting this fundraising effort. How cool is that?! Just out of the goodness of their hearts, they have similar deals available for the month of April. So, be sure to check them all out. You're sure to find something that tickles your fancy, and again, just a note that says "Culver" is all it takes to help the school. No extra $$ out of your pocket. You just get to enjoy a beautiful new trinket and we will enjoy knowing we are doing all we can to keep the lines of communication open.

The following shops will donate 10% of all purchases. All shipping fees will be refunded and items hand delivered.
ohsewhannahThe following shops will donate 10% of all purchases
The following shops will offer free shipping to you AND donate those shipping fees ($2.00-$10.00 per purchase)

and thank you for your support!!!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

A Vacation from my Vacation

One week sure can make a difference. I put my shop on hold and took the family to Washington, DC for a week. No blog posts, no new listings, not checking in and boy, I seem to have just disappeared.
Truth be told, now is when I would like to disappear. I would like to run and hide from the pile of laundry that will make up my next few days. I would like to hide from the pile of work that has accumlated with looming deadlines. Most of all, I would like to hide from the reality of my age. The sore feet, the blisters, the shin splints and aching hips. You see, walking on a beautiful, sunny, crisp spring day surrounded by blooming Magnolias and towering remebrances is joyous but after 6 days of sleeping in the hotel double bed with a squirming 10 yr old, a tiny shower and miles and miles of blooming magnolias, I have begun to feel my age.
I feel the tight Achilles tendon up my right calf, the blister at the botom of my small toe on the left foot, the shooting pain in my hip, the headache of a 12 hour drive home and that big pain in my ass? Yep, huge bruise from sitting on the arm of the chair accidently. Damn! I knew that was gona smart when I did it.

All in all, it was worth it. We really do have a beautiful Capital! Monuments, memorials, traditions and history that can overwhelm at times. It was a fantastic trip, full of adventure and brimming with memories. I think I will spend the day in my comfy chair, editing photos and drinking decent coffee.
It's good to be home. Stay tuned

Monday, March 9, 2009

Stress should be Tax Deductable

Does the government reimburse for brain transplants? I may need one. Mine is beyond fried! A long, rainy, windy, crazy weekend full of stressors has my head weary. I thought tackling the mountain range (not just one peak)of filing last weekend was "The Big One". I should have known it was just the molehill in the grand landscape of my week. I really should try follow tat sage advice of appreciating what you have. I think I would take a dozen molehills of filing (as much as I dread it) over the Mount Everest known as taxes (insert Dun, dun, dun music here), and I don't even do them. I just prepare all the paper for another unlucky schmuck to conquer. To think I was once an accounting major and considering a lifetime of tax hell is inconceivable. For those that do it, love it and are burried in it right now, I tip my hat. Better you than me is all I have to say.

So, paperwork 90% complete feels like a huge accomplishment to me right now. In addition to bead shopping, filling a big order, scouring for silver I can't seem to locate (big stress), a desire to head back to double my bead purchase of last week, a house to clean, 4 inches of rain and now, thanks to "The Gonz", carpet shampooing to do, I find myself revamping this blog, posting a much overdue update, lsiting new items and yearning for breakfast. Yep, I think I will definitely rename it Procrastination Mountain. Not for the weak heartted.
There shoudl be a huge warning sign posted at the foot that reads
Caution: Brain fry may occur. If you experience symptoms of headshaking, hand wringing, confusion, lack of focus or short temper, please discontinue climb and treat with copius amounts of alcohol. Massage may help alleviate symptoms that persist for more than 24hours.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Hot and Cold

I seem to be running that way this week. Good days, bad days, hot and cold flashes, sales and no sales, time to kill and crazy jam packed moments, then again, what else is new.

Well, this is new. SonniandBev are not to be missed. They have been in the jewelry making business for decades and I have had the pleasure of being their booth neighbor for about ten of them. Veterans of the Chicago area art and craft show circuit, they have sold their wares at the Merchadise Mart, Michigan Avenue and throughout the suburbs. I hear they will be traveling all the way to New York City this fall for the One of a Kind Show.

If you don't live near one of these areas, not to worry. They have made their on line selling debut this week on etsy. After much discussion (and prodding), they ahve tested the waters and are wading in more and more each day. We spent the day together recently in a cram session of etsy basics. Listing, descriptions, shop set up, etc. , not to mention lingo. Steampunk, upcycle, recycle, repurpose, destash and many other bits and goodies. Little do they know, it just scratch the surface of etsy's layers of fun and excitement. They'll be addicts like the rest of us in no time. Who knows, before long, even Bev will be a computer guru.

So check them out and even drop them a line. If you get a chance to see them in person, make a point of it. The truth is SonniandBev is just one of many layers of the onion that is, LeBouton. Vintage inspired pieces, antique buttons, brooches, buckles, watches, snaps, game pieces, even pool balls are known to have become phenomenal pieces of artistic jewelry in their hands and are a lovely complement to the unending array of Swarovski crystal pieces, as seen on etsy.

So, join me as I raise a toast; to Sonni and Bev, here's wishing you all the best on etsy and elsewhere

Thursday, February 26, 2009

One of Those Days

Oh, man, I'm having one of those days. I feel a little jittery and my head is foggy. It seems I can't do anything, at least not easily. No matter what I try to concentrate on, someone interrupts me and I lose it. No patience because I am having such a difficult time with myself, I really don't need others making me there go to person.
Seems like I have to stop what I'm doing every few minutes and pee. I hate days like that! Just another interruption i don't need. When I do start making a little headway, of course I have to stop midstream for something (pick up kids, make dinner, phone ringing, dog needs out, you name it)
It actually took 4 tries to get this done. I don't know what I was doing wrong or wat I wasn't finishing but Jeesh! That was insane! I was about to give up but new I needed to do something all the way through today and that was going to be it.
Now, I walk away.

end rant (Thanks for letting me)

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

New is Good

I admit I like vintage, I Love antiques and there's nothing like a story that reminisces about the "good ol' days" but this week is true testament that new is good too.
I don't think it any longer needs to be said that my week was busy. By now, that's pretty much understood. This week has however been full of new. New customers, new listings on etsy, new adventures being planned and even some new "old" music being played.

My Studio Open House was not new. It's been around for about the last 7 or 8 Februaries, at least. However, it did have many new customers visit and that's a great thing. It took many a year and much prompting to get me to host such a show but I must admit I do enjoy it. More for the enjoyment than the sales, I think. I love the less hectic environment and being able to show all my customers just how much I appreciate them by providing refreshments and opening my house to them. I think it is important to take the time to really get to know them and spend time listening to their stories is inspiring.
Preparing for the Open House while working and juggling a multitude of other tasks left little time for new listings on etsy or handmadefuzion. Suffice it to say, this led to a slow storefront. Finally, with the arrival of some great NEW beads, this week saw some new creations and some new listings. Well, booya! sales followed and I did a little dance (privately, of course).
As if this wasn't enough new for one week or one month for that matter, I finished plans for a new adventure. It seems to be the right time for a family trip to our nation's capitol for so many reasons. A new era, a new president, a new hope for a better future (eventually) coupled with a graduating grade schooler and a budding middle schooler just seemed to scream road trip. I worked on DH and scoured more travel websites than any one person should and there you are. A trip for 3 of the 4 of us to see new things for the first time. Mark may not be thrilled but for a museum guru, he has no idea what lies in wait. It's only a matter of time until he stops referring the The Smithsonian as just another museum.
This sounds like a pretty full and exciting week, doesn't it? Well, let me tell you, the best tale is yet to come. An utter surprise that brought me a joy I would not have imagined in a really MOM kinda way. and yes, I'm gushing. and yes, I'm being nerdy and sentimental, and yes, I have no life but at least once in a while I have the little things. So, hold on to your poncho, have a seat in your over sized papisan chair and take off the huge, cushy headphones! I fostered a musical epiphany in my meanager! It was stupendous! The best President's Day I've ever had. Can you say that?
Kids off school and me at my workbench left the day wide open for possibilities. Seeking inspiration, I reached for the CD player, of course. A few discs and one saxophone practice later, Alex was looking to hear the entire Sgt. Pepper album from which his concert music stemmed. Low and behold, the deep dark depths of the basement coughed up not one, not two, but 3 large cassette tape holding briefcases. (the cornucopia of destroyed LP's by DH will have to be its own post someday). 8 hours later, my meanager, the one that barely speaks to me and definitely struggles to believe I am/could be cool found it in his heart to applaud my taste in music. Everything from Warren Zevon and Elvis Costello to U2, the Beatles and some Talking Heads. I would have to say, he lost his music virginity that day, possible to Chrissy Hines, or maybe it was Stevie Nicks. It doesn't really matter. I knew I had reached a common ground. A sacred ground in my book. We definitely have a common interest in our love of music. He thinks I have good taste and he looks to me for advice on a good tune. Hell, what more can I ask from a 14 tr old angst ridden stomach that walks

Friday, February 6, 2009

TGIF, I Think

So busy lately. I tried posting a few days ago and was so unhappy with my rambling that I just deleted the entire thing. Of course I had every intention of getting back here and then my life just kept happening. I am glad to see Friday arrive yet, I need to slow down time. With an Open House in two weeks, I need every second I can get. Unfortunately, those seconds also need to be chocked full of inspiration and that just doesn't seem to be happening lately.
I had hoped for some inspiration from a trip to the beads store and an afternoon with my goof friend Diane ( always a day of laughter and fun to get the juices flowing). Of course, I then realized it was the week of the Bead Show in Tucson and the shop would be bare. I am going to Tucson one year, I swear. It's on that list of business trips that includes Italy (HA!) I also have ideas that require supplies I am out of and don't want to use the time I have running for them, so I try to make other things. Truth is I need to make everything I can. I need to just bite the bullet and go. Get it over with and work in peace.
As if these obstacles are not enough, I seem to be compelled to register for more and more days of teaching. Great. We need the money. The DC trip will be here before we know it and teaching is a guaranteed paycheck. That doesn't negate the need for productive time jewelry-wise. Throw in IEP's, 504"s, committee meetings, Board meetings and a "to do" list the length of my arm and the pressure builds exponentially. Suffice it to say, this blog of ramblings just keeps getting knocked of the list. So, this post has done wonders for my stress level.

Monday, February 2, 2009

I Feel Special

Today's the day. My feature on suchcoolstuff has been posted and I feel really honored. I have made today a special sale day in my shop just becasue of it. Hope you like the interview and my new listings.
Now it's back to the workbench.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Dreaming of the Front Page

Seems it is rare that I make the coveted front page of etsy but when I do it's almost always in the dead of night. I wake to a rush of traffic having sped thorugh my shop and eventually find myself somewhere on Flickr. Thanks to the lovely Miss Erika Price, I have a copy for myself.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009


Now, I don;t blog as often as I should and I am not computer savvy. The again, I'm not a computer idiot either. Yet, I am often the victim, especially lately, of the not saved.
GGRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR! Pretty much sums it up. I love the autosave featue here at blogger. it helps me often. Imagine my excitement the first time I found it (and the post I thought was gone forever). Now, it hasn't always saved me but it is definitely batting like an all star.
Having stated my mediocre at best computer skills above, I don't know that a full blown explanation into my week with Photoshop is really necessary. Of course, a power outage most conveniently timed to coincide with the Inauguration didn't help either.
My last post was another victim of the not saved. Now, I knew I was on a roll and the words were flowing faster than my fingers could say them. I had one eye on the autosave throughout. Imagine my surprise at the autosave failed icon and warning triangle. One eye on dinner, one on the autosave and one on my fingers was just one more eye than I have. End result, boiled away water for the rice, a lost post and another big
and a mediocre post in it's place.

What Cool Stuff!

Literally! Fresh peaches has a blog titled suchcoolstuff and thusly so. Tidbits of information, coupon announcements, links to great places and featured artists of all kinds. Even non-bloggers will find her posts interesting, helpful and insightful.

Back on the 15th, I was notified that my dear friend Karma had mentioned my shop amongst some of her favorites on etsy. I was flattered, to say the least. It seems that interview will be featured on the 26th, so stay tuned. Reading anything Karma has to say is guaranteed to be entertaining and/or controversial. She can't help it, it's who she is and exactly why I love her so.

So back to the topic at hand. Full of excitement, I was quick to express my gratitude to peaches. Next thing you know, I'm completing a survey myself and was notified just today that it will be featured on February 2nd. How gracious. Be sure to check it out. Who knows, you may find yourself mentioned. At the very least, you're sure to find some great stories. After all, it's such cool stuff!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Snow, Snow, Snow!

Blech! Enough already. Today, January 11th, Chicago will surpass it's average snowfall for the winter. 39 inches. It's not even mid January yet. We have been known to get snow as late as Mother's Day (on rare ocassion, but it has happened). A foot yesterday and more on the way tomorrow and several days this week.

After clearly marking our territory, Chicago style
(see the chair that says, don't even think about parking here. I earned this spot!)

I was relishing the excuse to stay indoors and make jewelry. Of course there's always bitchwork to be done, but I can multitask. I'm a mom, I am wired for multitasking. We could eat out of the freezer (a good hot bowl of homemade Chili) and we had some wine. No vodka, but some good red wine.

It worked. I made some cool, new favorites.

Ran a sale that wasn't as productive but that's okay. We still have plenty of time to shop and ship for Valentine's.

Now, if I could just get the kids to stop bickering. Why are they not out snowboarding, sledding and snowball fighting? UGH! Kids today!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

The Follow Up that wasn't

At the end of my last post (if you canremember that far back) I mentioned a host of future posts. My head was spinning with ideas and not enough time for my fingers to express them all. Good thing this is a written and not oral venue or my fingers expressions could take a whole new meaning, eh?

The snow is piled high and I have no (urgent) need to leave the house today. I perused that list of ideas and though it brought a smile, no real story began to flow. Time must have rested my creative juices on those. I did crack a little gigggle at the Grandma kicks butt story though. How can you not love an 82 year old family matriarch that responds to questions with a sarcastic wit you thought had been stolen by her years and struggles. Ordinary conversastion can be difficult at best thanks to the devil that took her word retrieval, but ask her to comment on Christmas dinner or her desire for a cocktail and you might want to put on some body armour. I can only imagine the zingers that would have flown if we had had that bottle of bitters needed to make her a Manhattan.
She is one fantastic lady. The mark she has left on my life is deep and passionate. How lucky I am to have her. If I ever figure out how to extract some photos from the slideshow dvd of her 90th, I wills hare them here. It is chocked full of great ones.
So, I must move on with my day. The usual litany of bitchwork that with any glimmer of hope will be peppered with some jewelry creating. We will live with what we have in house becasue I am just not trekking to the grocery in this weather. Sledding hill maybe, grocery on a Saturday in a snowstorm, I think not. If push comes to shove maybe those meanagers of mine will hike to the Polish store for milk or bread.
If you too are looking for a diversion, you can always stop by etsy for the SNSs sale tonight too. I will have a few secrets to give away for the cost of shipping only as well as a great discount on my entire shop. There will be a multitude of other shops doing the same, so stop on bye and say hi! Mention you read about it here and get free shipping on your order.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Lucky Me!!!!!!!

I rarely, if ever win anything but today I am the lucky winner of these.
Now, I have stated the unnecessarriness of sending me this prize. I was just adding in my two cents as I always do. Sharing a thought and revelling in the creative juices of fellow etsians. Fuzzishu needed a little help with a mental block and everyone jumped in to help.
Her jewelry is amazing and she couldn't be nicer. Her shop has such variety and clever designs. I have to admit, I had a hard time deciding on my prize ( I got to choose!).
I encourage you all to take a minute and peruse her lovely shop and if you happen to see me running around town in these

you know where i got them.

Thanks Fuzz! Good luck with the new line!