Thursday, December 31, 2009

Reflection for the New Year!

On this eve of 2010, I wish you all Love, Peace, Health & Happiness. I received the following in an email and have decided to share it here.
The following was written by Ben Stein and recited by him on CBS Sunday Morning Commentary.

My confession:

I am a Jew, and every single one of my ancestors was Jewish. And it does not bother me even a little bit when people call those beautiful lit up, bejeweled trees, Christmas trees. I don't feel threatened. I don't feel discriminated against. That's what they are, Christmas trees.

It doesn't bother me a bit when people say, 'Merry Christmas' to me. I don't think they are slighting me or getting ready to put me in a ghetto. In fact, I kind of like it. It shows that we are all brothers and sisters celebrating this happy time of year. It doesn't bother me at all that there is a manger scene on display at a key intersection near my beach house in Malibu . If people want a creche, it's just as fine with me as is the Menorah a few hundred yards away.

I don't like getting pushed around for being a Jew, and I don't think Christians like getting pushed around for being Christians. I think people who believe in God are sick and tired of getting pushed around, period. I have no idea where the concept came from, that America is an explicitly atheist country. I can't find it in the Constitution and I don't like it being shoved down my throat.

Or maybe I can put it another way: where did the idea come from that we should worship celebrities and we aren't allowed to worship God as we understand Him? I guess that's a sign that I'm getting old, too. But there are a lot of us who are wondering where these celebrities came from and where theAmerica we knew went to.

In light of the many jokes we send to one another for a laugh, this is a little different: This is not intended to be a joke; it's not funny, it's intended to get you thinking.

Billy Graham's daughter was interviewed on the Early Show and Jane Clayson asked her 'How could God let something like this happen?' (regarding Hurricane Katrina). Anne Graham gave an extremely profound and insightful response. She said, 'I believe God is deeply saddened by this, just as we are, but for years we've been telling God to get out of our schools, to get out of our government and to get out of our lives. And being the gentleman He is, I believe He has calmly backed out How can we expect God to give us His blessing and His protection if we demand He leave us alone?'

In light of recent events... terrorists attack, school shootings, etc. I think it started when Madeleine Murray O'Hare (she was murdered, her body found a few years ago) complained she didn't want prayer in our schools, and we said OK. Then someone said you better not read the Bible in school The Bible says thou shalt not kill; thou shalt not steal, and love your neighbor as yourself. And we said OK.

Then Dr. Benjamin Spock said we shouldn't spank our children when they misbehave, because their little personalities would be warped and we might damage their self-esteem (Dr. Spock's son committed suicide). We said an expert should know what he's talking about. And we said okay.

Now we're asking ourselves why our children have no conscience, why they don't know right from wrong, and why it doesn't bother them to kill strangers, their classmates, and themselves.

Probably, if we think about it long and hard enough, we can figure it out. I think it has a great deal to do with 'WE REAP WHAT WE SOW.'

Funny how simple it is for people to trash God and then wonder why the world's going to hell. Funny how we believe what the newspapers say, but question what the Bible says. Funny how you can send 'jokes' through e-mail and they spread like wildfire, but when you start sending messages regarding the Lord, people think twice about sharing. Funny how lewd, crude, vulgar and obscene articles pass freely through cyberspace, but public discussion of God is suppressed in the school and workplace.

Are you laughing yet?

Funny how when you forward this message, you will not send it to many on your address list because you're not sure what they believe, or what they will think of you for sending it.

Funny how we can be more worried about what other people think of us than what God thinks of us.

Pass it on if you think it has merit.

If not, then just discard it... no one will know you did. But, if you discard this thought process, don't sit back and complain about what bad shape the world is in.



My Best Regards, Honestly and respectfully,

Ben Stein

Be safe and happy my blog friends.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Merry Christmas!


This will be my last post until after Christmas. Tomorrow we are going out to buy all the fish we traditionally consume on Christmas Eve and more goodies for Christmas Day. We have a very "homemade" Christmas at our house. Most of our ornaments and house decorations have been handmade by me and/or our daughter. Many of them, including the tree skirt, are 17 years old!

These two reindeer pals always sit on this speaker for the holidays!

This soldier is made of cardboard paper towel rolls, oatmeal boxes & styrofoam, and he has patrolled our living room for many, many years with his trusty reindeer friend!

The stockings are hung by the fireplace--the one of the left is our daughter's. It is needlepointed and I began it when I found out I was pregnant. I actually was working on it when I went into labor! The other two are not quite as old--Mom and Dad needed stockings, too! The little pillow I filled with pine needles & some pine scent, but alas over the years it has lost its smell.

Last, but not least, this cute Hallmark reindeer family that I started collecting about 30 years ago!
I hope you all have a wonderful holiday and wish you all the best in 2010!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Another Party, Another Cancellation!

Yes, that's right...Our second holiday party invitation for last night wound up canceled, too. The weather again came into play when a nor'easter was predicted to dump 6-12" beginning after sunset & last till the next morning. In actuality, the snow did not start until 8 pm and we only got 4-5" total--not that I am complaining, however!

Obviously, I have not had time to start the ceiling project (see this post)because I have been baking goodies to take to the above party that never happened! Now our daughter will take some to school to give to the teachers who wrote her college recommendation letters. I have also been running back & forth to the supermarket almost everyday to purchase carefully timed ingredients for Christmas Eve & Day dinners. I hate that the ceiling won't be done & we are having a housefull for Christmas Day--but I'm getting over that.

Our daughter has now been accepted to 7 of the 9 colleges that she applied to! Yipee! We are all so happy that she has been accepted to her first & second choices. We are awaiting the decisions of the last two and then we will plan to visit all the possibles again so a decision can be made--but a lot of the pressure is off!

So things are coming together quite nicely! I'm trying to stay organized, as in what needs to be done when, and I am finding that Christmas is a finely timed holiday! In the next day or so I will be doing a few posts to show you some of our Christmas decorations, but for now I leave you with this....

The Nativity has been in my husband's family for many, many years. My Mom, who passed away in 2003, made the stable. Two very special heirlooms come together to identify the most important part of Christmas. It's all about Jesus, family and tradition!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Horror on the Highway

So today we were supposed to go to a relative's home about an hour away for an annual Christmas Party. We look forward to this every year since we don't get to see many of these relatives any other time during the year. (My husband's side of the family)

I got up at 7 a.m., ate breakfast, and exercised on the elliptical for 30 minutes in anticipation for the wonderful feast I knew we would be treated to.

Next I started the cream puffs that I happily make every year as our contribution. Having made the cream last night, I was right on schedule. I made two recipes of about 2 1/2 dozen each and each tray bakes for a total of 35 minutes. In between, I ironed our clothes, cleaned the windshield of the car, polished my nails & changed the bed. We got in the car about 1:15 pm--slightly behind schedule, but still okay.

The weather was rainy and the temperature was hovering just at the freezing mark. We had less than one mile before we come to the entrance ramp of the highway, and the road was backed up before we even got on. An ambulance passed us a short time later--although at that time we did not know whether it went on the ramp or straight ahead. But that should have been our first clue. We decided to get onto the highway and see how it goes. I think we went less than one mile when we heard the traffic report about all the accidents, so we just decided to get off the next exit & go home. As we called the party host to give regrets, the traffic came to a complete stop. We were stuck there at a standstill for 2 hours.

My husband and daughter started eating the cream puffs--none of us had had lunch. I was too nervous. We shook our head at the man two cars back who got out of his car to relieve himself, and we gave directions to the car next to us who said they had no heat and were running out of gas. Oh, three more ambulances passed us on the shoulder of the road, so this must have been some accident.

I am thankful that we finally were able to get off the highway. The side roads by then were salted/sanded and we made it home safely. I took out the old pasta machine & made home made pasta--tomorrow is my husband's birthday & this is his favorite! While we feasted at home, we thought how fast plans can change, how being in the wrong place at the wrong time can lead to disaster, and said a prayer for whomever those four ambulances went to assist.

Be safe this Christmas Season my bloggy friends!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Snow Day!

The weather people finally got it right this time! Woke up to 4-5" of snow to be followed by heavy rains....School closed....husband has sinus infection....he's mad because I went out and pushed the snow off the driveway-he'll get over it....it's going to be an interesting day!

Hope your day goes well!

Sorry no photo today--I took one but the camera captured a nice shot of the screen window rather than the snow outside!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Neat Site!


Today I want to share with you a neat site I found. It's called, "Find How". You can find out how to do just about anything by searching on this site. I came across it when I was searching for how to fix a hole in drywall. Yup, that's it above. We really don't know how/why this hole came to be...it is right outside the upstairs bath & the paint in this little circular area has been bubbling for many years. We always left it alone, but this past summer it started falling down in big clumps! Our temporary solution as you can see was to use handy-dandy duck tape...or is that duct tape?

Now since we are having nine or so guests for Christmas, I figured it was high time I fixed this! I hope to have some "as I go photos" to show you!

If you have any home improvement project that you've been putting off, check out this site--it's really helpful! And, it's not only for home improvement--you can find out how to do almost anything!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Afternoon Tea Break


There is nothing like a good cup of tea in the afternoon (or morning for that matter!) with a couple of ginger snaps. Today, I am enjoying Stash Fusion Tea, this one a mix of white & green tea. This is a favorite cup of mine because I love purple and it had belonged to my father-in-law who passed away in 1998. I had long admired this cup & by the time it came to me, he was gone & I could not bear to use it. Time does heal all and I am able to enjoy using it and remember him with happy memories.

Speaking of purple...here are my latest french beaded roses in purple. Maybe, I'm going through a purple period like Picasso's blue period! Not that I put myself on a par with Picasso! But, I'm also doing an oil painting of purple bearded irises--similar to the art card a few posts back. Do you find yourself creating in the same color for awhile? Anyway, the roses are up in my shop if you want to have a better look.

Happy Tuesday!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009


I am so thankful for my wonderful family, friends--including the many I have met online, and for my health.

I have been blessed in so many ways--my thanks spills over like this cornucopia!


Tomorrow, we will enjoy Thanksgiving dinner with our friends who live nearby.
Taking this opportunity to wish you all a very Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Untitled


I thought I would share my latest oil painting with you--finished just this past Friday. I have not totally decided on a title yet, however, it is temporarily called, "Fall Serenade". It took me about 4 classes to finish it which is roughly 6 hours. I rarely get a chance to paint at home because I am always doing chores around the house or creating for my Etsy shop, so I really enjoy the opportunity to take this class.

So what is your hobby--other than what you create for your Etsy shop if you have one?

Thursday, November 19, 2009

I just joined the ACEO Street Team on Etsy, called ACETSY. They are a very talented group of artists who enjoy creating those mini pieces of art that are referred to as ACEOs. They can be created in any media, the only "rule" is that they measure the standard 2 1/2" x 3 1/2"--the same size as a baseball card.

They have a blog that I have just begun to follow where they share information and post some of their work. Check it out if you are interested in joining or collecting aceos.

Here is my latest ACEO which I created for a challenge hosted by one of the Team members, Jocelyn Friis. The challenge was to create a piece to fit the theme, "Peace Starts With A Smile". Most anything in nature gives me a peaceful feeling, so I created this watercolor of irises. You can read more about the challenge, here, and check out the wonderful prize she is offering! You may just decide to enter for yourself!

Monday, November 16, 2009

The demise of the craft show

Well, I wish I could tell you that my craft show rocked, but it didn't. Yes, the attendance was very good...but I suspect most of the people came for the reasonably priced lunch and to get out of the rain. I am not taking this personally....I don't think it was just me who didn't do well, I don't think anyone had huge sales. I've been documenting my sales since I started doing craft shows in 1994, and besides the expected year to year ups and downs, there has been a sharp decline in the number of shows--at least in my area. Where I used to do 10 shows per season (Sept-Dec), I now only have 3, possibly 4.

All this has lead me to do a lot of thinking about whether this aspect, that is, craft shows, are worth it for me anymore. It seems that I have had this discussion with Mr. Moose for the last few years. I am trying to be honest with myself--it's just not worth sitting there all day to make the table fee and a few more dollars. Like in the past, however, when I try to decide to definitely, really truly give it up, I feel sad because it is what I love to do! I think this year will probably be it though :(

I have slowly begun listing my holiday themed supplies (of which I have tons!) on Ebay, so if anyone is interested, just do a "seller search" under "advanced search" for Craftymoose & take a look at what I have listed.

I still plan to continue to list on Etsy--my french beaded flower creations and other beaded items.

So tell me, do you do craft shows? How is it in your area?

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


I can't believe I have not posted since Halloween--but Blogger doesn't lie! Quick update: my Dad had the surgery, went home in 3 days, and 1 1/2 weeks later is already doing stairs! His recovery has been amazing.

I've finished two more books in the meantime...

Sloan Reynolds is set to meet the wealthy father & sister that she was separated from due to divorce. Complicating the meeting is the FBI agent who wants to go along undercover to investigate her father. A good, quick, read with just the right amount of romance! I never did figure out what the title had to do with the story, so if you read this one, let me know! And...

A short book about estranged families who reunite after a tragedy. Read it in just a couple of days.
I tend to stock up on paperbacks when our local library has their book sale twice a year. After I am done with them I usually freecycle the books or donate them back to the library.
The photo at the top of the post shows my latest french beaded flowers--Chrysanthemums in harvest colors. There are seven of them in yellow, marroon, snow white, 2 tone topaz and 2 tone marroon/gold. They are already in my Etsy shop.
This Saturday is my first craft show of the season so I'll be spending tomorrow and Friday making up a few last minute items and getting organized. Hopefully on Monday I'll be back to let you know how it went.
Have a great weekend!

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Halloween Sale!

Join me for this Halloween Edition of Saturday Night Specials!

The place: my Etsy shop.

The details:

~~~Spooktackular Saturday Night Specials for Oct.31~~~

ACEOS are Buy one, get one equal or lesser value FREE!
Everything else is 25% off (not including shipping).

Sale valid 5 p.m. Sat.-6 a.m. Sun. Put "SNS" in notes to seller & wait for an adjusted invoice before paying. Cannot be combined with coupons or other discounts. Happy Shopping!

French beaded flowers, beaded art dolls, beaded suncatchers, ACEOs, painted birdhouses, handmade quilled supplies for card making & scrapbooking.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

A Book and A Butterfly

I'm still in my reading mode and have moved on to this:
The latest thriller by Dan Brown. It's a pretty long, but fast moving book filled with symbolism, ties to freemasonary, and religion as his previous book, The DaVinci Code was. I'm about halfway through and can tell that I will be finishing it soon. It's one of those books that may have a slow start, but once you are hooked, you can't stop!

I have done a little crafting in between. I've just completed about 50 ornaments for my upcoming craft shows, and I just finished beading this Rainbow Butterfly. It is available in my shop through this link.


The rest of my time has been consumed with helping my Dad get ready for his knee replacement surgery. We went to a seminar today at the hospital to get briefed on what to expect before, during, and after the surgery. After 2 1/2 hours, I can honestly say we are prepared as well as one can expect. It's this coming Monday.

Well...I'm off to finish up another butterfly and maybe cheer myself up by buying something! LOL!

Have a great weekend if I don't get to post tomorrow.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Great Fall & Halloween Finds

Looking for some beautiful Fall & Halloween adornments? Check out one of my favorite blogs, Decor to Adore. She has some pretty combs & bracelets that are perfect for this time of year. Oh, and she's having a great Halloween Giveaway. I gave you the link above. It's really fabulous--candy, skulls, candy with Edward's picture on it. If you don't know who Edward is...where have you been? Think vampire!

Good luck!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Reading Frenzy!


Simply put: I love to read. Always have. I remember as a kid the many hours I spent in the old White Plains Public Library. The sagging, creaky wood floors and stairs and the rows and rows of adventures just waiting for me. I would "devour" the entire works of each mystery author--Agatha Christie, Phyllis Whitney, etc. Next, I went through my nonfiction fad, reading the lifes and times of the glamourous movie stars. I think I went through a self help period next--Dr. David Viscott was a favorite of mine; and, does anyone remember the book, "What color is your parachute?"

One of my longest running author infatuations has been with Stephen King. The first book I read was " 'Salem's Lot" and I know I was scared and jumpy with any noise around me. I also enjoyed "Pet Sematary" (sic). Made me sort of wonder about those pet turtles we burried in the back yard! Admittedly, I liked his earlier work much more than the later stuff.

Now I've moved on again and have devoured the entire writings of Patricia Cornwell, Clive Cussler, Robert B. Parker, and my latest love...James Patterson. I am 95% finished with the 2009 release shown above. I already have the next one requested at the library, too!

Reading is a wonderful thing!

Who is your favorite author?

Thursday, October 15, 2009

It's Snowing!!!


Yes, those drippy white streaks you see in the photo are snow! I can't believe we are only midway through October & it is snowing. Fortunately, it isn't sticking yet.

Yesterday, our daughter came home with the news that there is a "glitch" in the system at school & the Common Application won't be able to be submitted electronically, so therefore, the deadline for requesting transcripts for Early Action is tomorrow Oct. 15! We spent all afternoon & till about 9 pm completing the application, supplements, addressing envelopes & getting others printed on the computer while at the same time she tried finishing her Chemistry AP homework & studying for a Psych test. Thanks for the notice, ...High School! Good thing we had some candy corn in the house!

Saturday we are going to look at the University of Massachusetts Amherst so I hope the weather is ok!

If all this weren't enough, my Dad has decided that the time is now to have a total knee replacement.

It's hard to be productive when so much is going on. So how's life treating you?

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Words of Wisdom from a 90-year-old

Just thought I would share what I received in an email from a friend:

Written By Regina Brett, 90 years old, of The Plain Dealer, Cleveland , Ohio

"To celebrate growing older, I once wrote the 45 lessons life taught me. It is the most-requested column I've ever written. My odometer rolled over to 90 in August, so here is the column once more:"



1. Life isn't fair, but it's still good.
2. When in doubt, just take the next small step.
3. Life is too short to waste time hating anyone.
4. Your job won't take care of you when you are sick. Your friends and parents will. Stay in touch.
5. Pay off your credit cards every month.
6. You don't have to win every argument. Agree to disagree.
7. Cry with someone. It's more healing than crying alone.
8. It's OK to get angry with God. He can take it.
9. Save for retirement starting with your first paycheck.
10. When it comes to chocolate, resistance is futile.
11. Make peace with your past so it won't screw up the present.
12. It's OK to let your children see you cry.
13. Don't compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about.
14. If a relationship has to be a secret, you shouldn't be in it.
15. Everything can change in the blink of an eye.. But don't worry; God never blinks.
16. Take a deep breath. It calms the mind.
17. Get rid of anything that isn't useful, beautiful or joyful.
18. Whatever doesn't kill you really does make you stronger.
19. It's never too late to have a happy childhood. But the second one is up to you and no one else.
20. When it comes to going after what you love in life, don't take no for an answer.
21. Burn the candles, use the nice sheets, wear the fancy lingerie. Don't save it for a special occasion. Today is special.
22. Over prepare, then go with the flow.
23. Be eccentric now. Don't wait for old age to wear purple.
24. No one is in charge of your happiness but you.
25. Frame every so-called disaster with these words ''In five years, will this matter?".
26. Always choose life.
27. Forgive everyone everything.
28. What other people think of you is none of your business.
29. Time heals almost everything. Give time, time.
30. However good or bad a situation is, it will change.
31. Don't take yourself so seriously. No one else does.
32. Believe in miracles.
33. God loves you because of who God is, not because of anything you did or didn't do.
34. Don't audit life. Show up and make the most of it now.
35. Growing old beats the alternative -- dying young.
36.. Your children get only one childhood.
37. All that truly matters in the end is that you loved.
38. Get outside every day. Miracles are waiting everywhere.
39. If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else's, we'd
grab ours back.
40. Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need.
41. The best is yet to come.
42. No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up.
43. Yield.
44. Life isn't tied with a bow, but it's still a gift.

Oil Painting class starts up again tomorrow, so if I don't get a chance to post....

Have a great weekend!

Words of Wisdom from a 90-year-old

Written By Regina Brett, 90 years old, of The Plain Dealer, Cleveland , Ohio

"To celebrate growing older, I once wrote the 45 lessons life taught me. It is the most-requested column I've ever written. My odometer rolled over to 90 in August, so here is the column once more:"



1. Life isn't fair, but it's still good.
2. When in doubt, just take the next small step.
3. Life is too short to waste time hating anyone.
4. Your job won't take care of you when you are sick. Your friends and parents will. Stay in touch.
5. Pay off your credit cards every month.
6. You don't have to win every argument. Agree to disagree.
7. Cry with someone. It's more healing than crying alone.
8. It's OK to get angry with God. He can take it.
9. Save for retirement starting with your first paycheck.
10. When it comes to chocolate, resistance is futile.
11. Make peace with your past so it won't screw up the present.
12. It's OK to let your children see you cry.
13. Don't compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about.
14. If a relationship has to be a secret, you shouldn't be in it.
15. Everything can change in the blink of an eye.. But don't worry; God never blinks.
16. Take a deep breath. It calms the mind.
17. Get rid of anything that isn't useful, beautiful or joyful.
18. Whatever doesn't kill you really does make you stronger.
19. It's never too late to have a happy childhood. But the second one is up to you and no one else.
20. When it comes to going after what you love in life, don't take no for an answer.
21. Burn the candles, use the nice sheets, wear the fancy lingerie. Don't save it for a special occasion. Today is special.
22. Over prepare, then go with the flow.
23. Be eccentric now. Don't wait for old age to wear purple.
24. No one is in charge of your happiness but you.
25. Frame every so-called disaster with these words ''In five years, will this matter?".
26. Always choose life.
27. Forgive everyone everything.
28. What other people think of you is none of your business.
29. Time heals almost everything. Give time, time.
30. However good or bad a situation is, it will change.
31. Don't take yourself so seriously. No one else does.
32. Believe in miracles.
33. God loves you because of who God is, not because of anything you did or didn't do.
34. Don't audit life. Show up and make the most of it now.
35. Growing old beats the alternative -- dying young.
36.. Your children get only one childhood.
37. All that truly matters in the end is that you loved.
38. Get outside every day. Miracles are waiting everywhere.
39. If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else's, we'd
grab ours back.
40. Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need.
41. The best is yet to come.
42. No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up.
43. Yield.
44. Life isn't tied with a bow, but it's still a gift.

Monday, October 5, 2009

The Murder of King Tut


Like a lot of people, I have always been fasinated with Egyptian History, specifically King Tut, so when I heard about this book, I knew it was right up my alley!

I first heard about it from the one of my favorite authors, James Patterson's.website, When I later read another review on a blog I follow, I knew I was hooked! If you enjoy reading you might want to check out The Tome Traveler's Weblog, here. She review tons of books, and often has giveaways.

I'm only about a quarter of the way through the book; and even though I "know" the story, it holds my interest and I can't wait to read more! It is in the typical JP style of short chapters with enticements at the end of each to keep you reading. Every few chapters or so the story alternates between the 1300s BC--the time of the Pharoahs--and the 1800s when Howard Carter did most of his excavations.

If you like to read, like to read James Patterson books, and are fastinated with King Tut & Egyptian history, you are sure to enjoy this book!

Happy Monday!

Friday, September 25, 2009


Been so busy this week trying to stock my shop with Fall flower arrangements and getting a jump on creating some Holiday decorating things, that I haven't had much time to blog--or do anything else. Nearly every October weekend will be filled with going to college open houses or other college related activities, and my first craft show of the season is Nov. 14. I am determined not to give myself more stress than I already am experiencing.

You know the old saying..."Stop and smell the roses"? Well, the rose above is what will probably be the last rose of the season from our rose bush. My husband surprised me with it last night--picked it, found the vase & "delivered" it with a sweet message. It will be my reminder to Stop and remember the important things!

Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


Well, yesterday, being the first day of Autumn, I listed this basket of French Beaded Marigolds in my Etsy shop. I really was quite proud of myself because, you see, no matter how hard I try I always seem to be a little behind the seasons!

Most of the beads I used for the flowers came from a grab bag of beads that I purchased from Beadwright. She is discontinuing most of her supplies so now is the time to visit her artfire shop if you bead--terrific bargains--that is, if I don't beat you to them!

You can read the full description of the Marigold basket here. Now, I'm off to finish a second Marigold arrangement and then start on the Holiday designs. I will not get behind! I will not get behind!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Autumn Story


There once was a little girl who couldn't wait for Autumn. She loved the snap of cold in the mornings and the warm, sunny afternoons. She loved seeing the leaves turn color, and she did a very special thing each year since she was very little. She always collected the first fallen leaf and gave it to her Mom. She called it the first leaf of Fall. Even when her Mom moved away....she mailed the leaf to her. The last leaf she fashioned into a heart and made it into a card.

Now her Mom is gone. At first the leaves saddened her because there was no one left to give them to. Gradually, over the years she made her piece with them...until today...when she finally realized that all the leaves she gave her Mom...her Mom is now giving back to her!

Happy Autumn!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

A Treasure Box inspired by the Sea


On another hiatus from creating beaded flowers, I created this cute nautical box. It has a faux closure of a piece of driftwood surrounded by shells. Below you can see a close-up of the focal piece on the top.

I made a beaded bezel to surround a fossilized sand dollar. Then I added a bezel of small shells and finally a bezel of braided jute. It is available in my Etsy shop.

I may take a break now & then from creating beaded flowers, but almost always I am still using beads!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Still here, working away!

Due to sporatic internet outages (Boy that sounds official, doesn't it?) I haven't been on the computer too much lately. The Cable company came today, did something up the pole & supposedly we are all fixed.

I can't complain too much because it has given me plenty of time to get creating....I am working on some neat designs for Fall & plan to get a jump on the holidays by starting to list some Christmas items now. That's all I'm saying for now...you'll have to check back to see what is new!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Shameless self promo & a fun giveaway site!



Showing off my latest french beaded flowers today. Three Lilies made in colors to match the ones on the ceramic vase. I previously make 7 Daisies in a matching vase, shown below, and they just flew out of my shop!

Now, about the fun giveaway site. See the button on the top right of my blog that says
"Audrey's Giveaways"? Just click on it and it will take you to an amazing site filled with free giveaways and other fun things such as polls, recipes, and a craft blog!

Have a great day!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Fall Chill


There's a chill in the air and an uneasy feeling that comes with the first day of school--even for me as a parent. It stems from having a child in their senior year of High School. I understand well what is ahead. We have already begun looking at colleges. Last year we went to an open house at a college & I came home to shed private tears to think of my "baby" living away from home in a 2 x 4 room. As of now, we have visited 9 colleges--some were okay, some I hated, and I can't help feeling that I hate them only because I hate to let her go. And I thought my husband was having the problem with separation anxiety! Of course, I voice none of this to my daughter--she's anxious enough in an excited sort of way, ready to move on to meet life's challenges.

My heart breaks to think there are so many "lasts". The last chorus performances, the last rounds of meet the teacher nights and conferences. The last year we will send her off to catch the school bus, rising early to see her off for the first day. Her Dad with the video camera when she gets home recording all her excitement & impressions. He has done this every year since kindergarten, although in the younger grades it was before she left for school & now it is after she gets home. As she got older she got more excited to do this, then impatient, then downright angry to "have" to "submit" to the same questions year after year, and now has come full circle back to loving it.

I'm taking a deep breath now and cherishing every moment...and perhaps even looking forward to the next round of "firsts"!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Life from Death


Some of the Marrigold seeds that I have collected from my garden.



"All the flowers of all the tomorrows are in the seeds of today."

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Another networking site

Some of you may already be aware of this site, but I just signed up with link referral (free). I'm not sure if this will bring me any sales, and it does take some work to keep up with it; but for the time being I'm going to give it a try. In the four days since I joined...I have had 26 hits through to my Etsy shop and my shop has been reviewed 16 times. So it has brought additional traffic to my site. If you want to check it out, here's a link.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Project redo

You may remember back in late June I posted a photo of my attempt at beading around a cab. Well, I wasn't all that happy with the way it turned out, so I gave it another try or rather about three more tries. Here is the before:

Well, I beaded it again, tore it out, beaded it again, tore that out--you get the idea. I finally think I got it right. Here it is surrounded by turkey feathers and mounted on top of a box I covered in leather.


You can read more about it here.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Bat Story, Part 2

I'm finally getting around to the rest of the story--don't worry, no more bats involved!

We finally got fed up with not having the air conditioners in the windows because we were afraid bats would get in again. It's been so hot & humid at night we can hardly sleep. I'm happy to say they are in, and we have had no further trouble. Here was our solution:

We got some metal screening and completely wrapped the outside of the units wherever there were vents & duck taped it one. Yes, we did this even though we know these vents do not connect to the front of the unit where it opens into the room. After installing them in the windows we put the foam piece between the two windows & taped that on with clear packing tape. Then from the outside, my husband packed foam rubber where the pieces on the sides stretch out and taped those.

After all that, my husband says, "well, they'd have to get through 3 layers of stuff to get in now & by that time we should be awake!"

Sometimes, I can't wait for Fall.

Monday, August 17, 2009

New Year, New Bat Story!

Not in my wildest dreams did I ever think I would be telling another bat story after these three:
Call Me Bat Woman
What's in a name
Not A Halloween Story
But, I was wrong...

Our daughter had a sleep over last Thursday and she and her friend slept in the living room. Around 12:30 a.m. she wakes us up with the following: "I don't want to freak you out, but there's something in the fireplace" Now our fireplace has glass doors so I know I have a moment or two to wake up & get downstairs. Yup, if you're thinking ahead you guess it--a bat! A baby bat apparently flew down the chimney & was then of course stuck. Out come the trusty butterfly nets again. Caught it pretty much without incidence or heart attack and let it outside. The girls settle down again & husband & I go off to bed. Two hours later, we hear heavy, fast stomping up the stairs--our daughter screaming "It's ba-a-a-ack!And it's getting ou-u-u-ut" So down we go again. This time we couldn't see anyting so we duck taped a sheet over the things, duck taped the heating vents closed and told the girls to come sleep upstairs.

To make a long story short..upon inspection it either found its way back up the chimney (unlikely) or was never there. The spot where she thought she saw it getting out was a carbon deposit on the light stone of the fireplace. Can't really blame her--poor kid's been through enough bat trauma! Husband put small wire mesh over the chimney flue pipes & I filled those heat opennings with steel wool!

I'll continue with part 2 another day!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Nature is an inspiration!


A little earlier in the summer, our backyard, and the neighboorhood in general, was filled with these orange lilies. They are such cheerful bursts of color!

I could not resist creating some in beads!

It's been very hot and humid lately--hard to motivate myself to do too much. Also, we are beginning to search for colleges for our daughter and will hopefully visit a few in the remaining weeks before school starts.

Hope you are enjoying your summer!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Etsy shop feature

Photo taken by Analiese Designs.

Today I'd like to introduce you to an Etsy shop, Analiese Designs, which is owned by Rachel.

Analiese designs is stocked with beautiful hand crafted pendants of glass & polymer clay, jewelry, magnets, mirrors & much more! Beautiful work at reasonable prices!

I first "met" Rachel on Facebook where she was running a contest to name the above pendant. I had the good fortune to pick the winning name (Ever Watchful) and received my choice of her square tile pendants. Well I must tell you they are all so beautiful it was hard to choose. Here is what I selected:


Stop by this nice shop--you're sure to find something you love!

Friday, August 7, 2009

Arctic Monkeys on the loose!


Well, it turned out to be a much busier week than I thought! Our daughter had a blast Monday night at the Arctic Monkeys concert at the Highline Ballroom in New York City. She met her friend Alice,(from Florida),& they decided to get on the line at 3:30 for a 9 pm show! Of course they had fun talking to all the other concert goers. C (our daughter) has loved this British band ever since they were first on MTV so needless to say this was a dream come true for her! Not only that, but she was in the front row and the lead singer (her favorite) actually sang part of a song to her & her friend. During a break, one of the crew gave her the guitar pick the bass player flicked out but didn't quite make it into the audience. Now if that wasn't enough...P Diddy was there and actually came down from the balcony to mosh (?I was told it means dance) with the audience to some of the songs!

It was over at midnight! (remember, we were there from 3:30!) So how did we kill all those hours? Glad you asked! We wandered through Chelsea Market & had dinner there from an Italian stand that sold sandwiches just like we had when we were in Italy. Then we stopped in a bakery & shared a napoleon and a caramel covered eclair. After that we walked many, many blocks to a movie theater & saw Harry Potter & the Half Blood Prince. The movie ended 10:30 and we took a slow walk back to the Ballroom to pick up C. By the time we caught a cab to Grand Central Station & train back home it was 3am! I'm more tired writing about it!! And that was only Monday or rather now Tuesday.

Wednesday, Alice spent the day here while her Mom & sister went visiting their old neighborhood upstate & later came back for dinner.

The rest of the week was filled with painting, staining, etc. I wish I could tell you it was in our house, but it wasn't. Actually, it was in our house, just not the one we live in. We own a house around the corner from ours (my husband's since 1956). Our tenant moved out after 11 years & we have made the hard decision to try to sell it. Not the best market, I know, but the timing is right for us. So while we are waiting to sell it, we're sprucing it up a bit.

Hopefully, I will be back to my semi-regular posting next week. In the meantime, have a great weekend everyone!

Monday, August 3, 2009

I have returned....sort of!

No, I haven't fallen off the face of the earth or been burried alive by seed beads. I have been taking it easy after some surgery at the end of June--but not too easy as you will soon see from my posts. For now I present one of the nicest giveaways I have seen in the blogosphere. I just entered and you should too! Even if you don't want the prize, enter anyway & give her to me!!!


http://dlynneartdolls.blogspot.com/2009/07/blog-give-away-spirit-doll.html

Now if I have any energy left after taking our daughter to a concert tonight in New York City, I'll be back tomorrow!

Friday, June 26, 2009

Taking a Break!


As I usually do this time of year, I am taking a blog break. I hope you will continue to follow my blog & check back in a few weeks to see what's new.

Enjoy your summer and Happy Creating!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009


I spent almost the whole day today trying to hone my peyote skills in preparation for beading the gourd I talked about a few posts ago. Actually, I know the stitch--it's the tubular variation that I was attempting.

This very large polished(? agate)cabochon was screaming to me from my stash so I thought I'd give it a try. After gluing it to the bead fabric (Beadwright's, of course!)I painstakingly back stitched around it with multi-shade topaz & brown beads. I took great care to make sure the count was even, as I planned to do a "step up". All went well until about the third row when it got a little loose from the stone. I hope I fixed this by decreasing here and there.

In retrospect, I wonder if perhaps I should have made the first back stitched row not so tight with beads. Anyway, it's done, it's not perfect, but not terrible either! It seems too big for a brooch, so maybe I'll turn it into a necklace.

That's what I've been up to...how about you?

Monday, June 22, 2009

Handmade site--add your link!

Hope you all had a great weekend & a nice Father's Day! Today I want to share a site just put up by TimothyAdamDesigns. It is a place where you can add your links to your handmade shops for free!

http://handmadefeed.com/

Timothy has also very generously provide tons of useful information and links on his blog and Handmadeology site.

If you don't know Tim, he has spent mega hours trying to help the Etsy community help perfect their SEO, their stores, drive more traffic to their shops, etc. Stop by--I know you'll be glad you did!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Father's Day!


When I was pregnant with our daughter, 16 years ago, I went to a local store & had a tee shirt silk screened with a "#1 World's Best Dad" pattern. I, or rather our daughter, gave it to my husband in the hospital after she was born. My husband has worn this shirt, faithfully, every Father's Day for 16 years now! If that ain't love, I don't know what is!


Happy Father's Day to all the Dads and Dads-to-be out there!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Look what I got!


I am so excited! I just received the gourd kit that I ordered from Beadwright. I have long had a fascination with gourds but was interested in more than surface painting treatments. I've seen some beautiful painted gourds, but I just don't think my skill is that strong in painting. So when I first saw this kit, and knowing how I have a passion for beading, especially with seed beads, I knew this was for me!

The kit came with Nicole Campanella's (Beadwright) book, Gourdgeous Beaded Gourds,which is filled with great basic explanations of stitches with clear diagrams and lots of projects & eye candy. She takes you step by step through the process, and the kit includes everything you need to get started: the book, two hanks of seed beads, nymo (thread), a needle and a gourd.

Now would be an excellent time to visit Beadwright's Etsy shop or Artfire shop as she is having a $1.00 shipping sale (+ a penny for additional items). Both shops are stocked with different items and Nicole's customer service is exceptional!

Have fun shopping!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Here they are!



Finally, the skies have brightened up a little around here! We have had a whole week of rain-mostly on and off, with a couple of torrential downpours & thunderstorms thrown in!

Today, I am showing off our new cook top and wall oven which I am sure you are getting tired of hearing about--but I love them! They are finally in, hooked up. adjusted & ready to go! Glad to be back in business since I love to cook. On the menu tonight is homemade red clam sauce with linguine & garlic bread. My mouth is watering already!

Have a great weekend everyone!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

ICDA

There are no limitations
to the self ...
except those
you believe in. (not sure of author)


How true this is! Whenever I am in a creative slump and feel like I'm just not creating anything worthwhile, I take a step back & stop trying so hard. Sometimes just taking a day off is all it takes to get me back on track. Sometimes it just "playing" with my art stuff rather than trying to create anything specific. Oftentimes, this is the way happy little accidents that turn out to be works of art happen for me. As soon as I realize that I can do anything...I can!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

The best laid plans....


So things did not go as planned over the weekend. My husband's cousin who is a contractor came over on Saturday to install the cook top & wall oven for us, only to find that we need some kind of adjustment in the fitting on the pipe from the propane.
It really annoys me, especially since the two appliances are from the same company. Yes, we've had the previous one for 17 years, but why was it necessary for them to change the hook up? Oh well, the gas company is coming today, so I should be able to cook again tonight.

I finished the first brooch for my artfire shop, but since I did not have time to list it, I'll leave the shop info for another time. I really like this one and will find it hard to part with it. The stone is Lazulite & has beautiful inclusions of blue in a cream matrix. It reminds me of the beautiful colors of the southwest, so I call it "Mesa" I love it!

Friday, June 5, 2009


Just a quick post today. We just got a new wall oven and cook top delivered & will get them installed tomorrow. So finally, finally, I can stop cooking in the fireplace! Kidding!

I am finally getting around to stock my Artfire store & have decided to do jewelery. I am going to start with some beaded brooches like the ones I showed in previous posts. I'll post again on Monday with some photos.


Right now I'm off to the library to pick up James Patterson's, "The Eighth Confession". I'm such a JP junkie--I've read everything and have loved mostly all of them! So what's on your bookshelf?

Have a great weekend everyone!