Saturday, October 31, 2015

Happy Halloween!

I forgot my tutu at home.
I made an easy tutu, but, I left it in my closet.
I was so disappointed when I realized that my tutu was not with me.

Tradition, in our family regarding "All Hallows Eve," or Halloween,
is to wait until the very last minute to buy the candy so that it will be, at least, 50% cheaper.

The problem I see with that is that I won't be able to find a tutu to wear.
I'm hoping they will be on sale.
I checked out the tutus at Target.
They are not as nice as the one I made,
but they will have to do----
If, and only, if,

So, maybe tomorrow at 4 or 4:30 PM,
I'll run over to Target to look at tutus and to buy some candy.
I don't think we'll get the little ones before that time.
Wish me luck!
Happy Halloween!

Friday, October 30, 2015

Three Beautiful Things This Week

Three Beautiful Things This Week was inspired by a wonderful blog that Clare writes called Three Beautiful Things. Everyday, Clare writes about 3 Beautiful Things that happen each day in her life. It's a wonderful blog! I can only hope to imitate her in a very small way.

1) Yesterday, I found 3 more ginkgo leaves!  I'm not sure what I will do with these leaves, but I will do something beautiful with them.

2) Sometimes, we need to be thankful for the annoying people in our lives.  The do serve a purpose.  They teach us kindness and patience. 
We have to choose these virtues.
They also show us how we don't want to behave, 
sometimes,  we see ourselves in them, and realize where we need to improve.

3) The foliage is almost finished now.  The leaves are almost off the trees.  If we want to see color, we have to look down.  I'm okay with that.  Sometimes, looking down helps us to find things we would have never seen before.  The only thing is, you don't want to trip.  So watch where you're going, too!

Wednesday, October 28, 2015


Other than the sound of rain hitting 
 the windows, there is a quiet that is 
near silence.  Pixie sleeps soundly on my bed.  Fred, the cat, rests on the window sill, ready to pound Pixie into obedience if she moves.  Right now, he’s quiet and enjoying the rain.  Marvin sleeps on his pillow on the love seat.  Nothing will wake him up.  He's getting old and prefers to sleep.  My daughter sleeps silently in her bed.  The low light relaxes me, and I think of my blessings.  I am blessed, and this moment fills me with gratitude.

Worth Repeating: The Crows and Haiku

Gliding on air frequencies
Branches, empty trees,
Crows, birds, huge, noisy, beacons.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

A Trip to the Thrift Store and the Dollar Store = Props and some fun Bracelets!

My first stop was at the thrift store next to the Dollar Store.
I check their jewelry for rosaries and beads I can use to make rosaries.
I didn't find anything I liked in the way of beads for rosaries, 
I did find these wonderful bracelets!
I am wearing them now on both wrists!
They go together well.
The bracelet with daggers is elastic.
The embroidered bracelet is held together with velcro.
The bangle is a bangle and slips over my wrist very nicely.
Total cost: $5.76.
I was happy!

Next stop was at the Dollar Store.
When my props aren't available, I look for alternative ones.
I am not making beads this week, but I am taking pictures of earrings because on
November 5-6
Juli Cannon is having another extravaganza on Art Beads on Facebook. 
As I hinted, 
this time we will be showing off and, hopefully, selling earrings to get ready for the Christmas holidaze!

I'll show you some of my earrings later, but first, I'll show you the props!
I'm not sure which props I'll use,
but the base will be the tiles on the table.
That's where the bracelets were photographed.

Yes, that's a kleenex box.  I have to figure out how to cover the label, though.
Then, there's the wine glass and snowflakes, the rocks, the boxes, the star, the ornaments.
They simply need to be there,
without intruding into the picture of the earrings. 
I think I like the blue background the best. 
I don't know.
What do you think?

Monday, October 26, 2015

Snippets of Fall

Even as we near the end,
the death of summer,
the decline of fall,
each season slips into the other,
silently, quietly, with little violence,
except the 

Colors hidden,
save for the onset of fall.
One season melting into the other.
Trees slumber.
Foliage bursts into the brilliance of the sun.
Cloudy days.
Less light.
The autumn has begun.


Sunday, October 25, 2015

Wishing You a Sunday of Blessings

May Your Day be Blessed with Joy.

May Your Day be Blessed with Family.

May Your Day be Blessed with Rest.

May Your Day be Blessed with Happiness.

May Your Day be Blessed with Kindness.

May Your Day Be Blessed with Good Friends.

May Your Day Be Blessed with Happiness.

May Your Day Always be Blessed!

Saturday, October 24, 2015

So What Do you Do on a Rainy Friday? Ramblings on a Wet Friday.

Looks like fun, and it did brighten up and otherwise gloomy day.

I knew I had to do this.
I've always wanted one.
Now, finally, at my age,
I'm getting one

It's almost finished.
The rain helped to get it going.
Halloween is drawing near.
I'm wearing it on that day,
on any day I want to dance.

Do you know what IT is?
Well, it's tulle right now, 
but soon it will be a

I needed more than I bought, so it was back to the fabric store for more tulle.

This time I added some white for an accent.  
You'll see it next week when I'm finished with it.
I can hardly wait.

I'll dance in it, too.
I love to dance.
I wonder what Pixie will think?
She'll just lift up her head, then go back to sleep.
Maybe, I'll make one for her, too?


Friday, October 23, 2015

Three Beautiful Things This Week

Three Beautiful Things This Week was inspired by a wonderful blog that Clare writes called Three Beautiful Things. Everyday, Clare writes about 3 Beautiful Things that happen each day in her life. It's a wonderful blog! I can only hope to imitate her in a very small way.

1) Pixie is enjoying her life.  The walk today was the highlight of her day.  She is always so grateful when we walk, but she will sure spit out a treat she doesn't like.  It's downright embarrassing at times!

2) We have enjoyed a beautiful Indian Summer this week!  We had our first frost, and the temps warmed up.  Gorgeous fall weather!

3) I was blessed by a young man yesterday, after I gave him a pink rosary.  It was wonderful!


Thursday, October 22, 2015


Remember when you were a kid and you used to get sent to your room and you weren't allowed to watch TV?
What did you do to get sent to your room?
Is that a laughable minute for you?

My daughter would get sent to her room for being naughty, but instead of saying that she couldn't watch TV, and there was no TV in her room, we told her that she couldn't read.
You would have thought that, as parents, we were trying to kill her.
Not being allowed to read was the worst thing we could do.

I remember this because I wrote it in my journal, thought I'm not sure I'd forget, no matter what.

She laughs.

So many things happen to us each day, and in this world of unlimited information, it's really hard to keep track of happenings all of the time.
Memories are made and often, quickly forgotten.
Memories are so important in families.
Memories tie one generation to another generation.
If you've ever attempted to construct your family tree, you realize that so much of your history has been forgotten because those who made the history are deceased.  
Questions develop that cannot be answered.
One can only speculate.

Memories are important in each family, too.
Families can be united by memories.
Of course, there are those families where things are better forgotten than remembered.  
I'm not talking about these families.
I am talking about families who are functional.
Where, even if the memory might not be pleasant,
the memory brings forth love to bind them closer together.

Make a memory today.
Get out of your house.  Go for a walk in the snow.  Dance in the rain.  
Memories don't have to be expensive.
Read to your kids.  Take them to the library.  Go to a book club.  Read a book.
You decide, then record that memory.
Make a photo book of a trip.
Take pictures and label them.
I've gone through photos and thought, "Who is this person?"
Write the memory in a journal.
For recording memories, I prefer the written word, if it's possible.
If not, use your technology.  Keep an online journal.
Just make sure you back it up!

Memories are important to pass on from generation to generation.
Kids love to hear stories of their moms and dads when they were kids.
Kids love to hear stories of grandma and grandpa when they raised their parents.

Record them.
Preserve them.
The stories you'd like to tell to your children might not be accessible in your brain when you are ready to tell the stories. 
Do it now!
You won't be sorry.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Worth Repeating: 10 Reasons to go for a Walk

I have a dear friends whose kids have told me, "Mom always said when we didn't feel good, or if we had a hang nail, 'Go for a walk.  You'll feel better."  Turns out, Sandy was right.  Think about it, and see if you agree with these reasons.

1) You’ll feel better.
2) Your endorphins get flowing as you get moving.
3) Your muscles warm up and your body begins to purge chemicals that affect you negatively.
4) You burn calories.
5)  You get away from the stressors that you face.
6) Your circulation will improve.
7) Your bones will develop more mass because walking is weight bearing.
8) You can, literally, stop and smell the roses.
9) Your brain tissue is nourished and new synapses, neurons and blood vessels are formed.
10) You boost your immune system.

What do you think?  Do you walk?  If so, how do you feel?  Does walking really make you feel better if you have a hang nail?

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

A Moment In Time: Random Memories of Fall

I stop and hear the laughter of the two little girls walking home from school.
In New Mexico, 
the leaves tend to dry up very quickly,
so the trick is to wear your rain boots, 
then the crackly leaves will not get stuck in your shoes when you jump in them all the way home.

Up you go.
Crackle, crackle, crackle.

Down you come,
Whoosh, crackle, crackle

I remember when my
grade school BFF and I would walk home from school in the fall.
The leaves collected in the gutter.
They made dry, musical noises as we waded into them like we would wade into the ocean.
The leaves almost came to the top of our boots.
We had rain boots, but we didn't wear them much for the rain because there wasn't that much rain in New Mexico.

Crunch!  Crunch!  Crack! Crack.
Step on a crack.  You break your mother's back.
Laughs and giggles all the way home.

Home work could wait a little bit longer as we walked in the door and planned to meet at the playground later.
So many more leaves to crunch.
Crackle. Crackle.  Pop! Pop!
We're out of breath.  The air is hot, but it will cool down soon.
The wind is gentle, and the leaves are gathering in the gutters for us to crunch.

Now, when I step on a leaf, I think of her.
We're not BFF's any longer, but we are friends.
Crackle! Crackle! Crunch! Crunch!
Here's to memories of Fall!

Monday, October 19, 2015

It's Good to be Home Again

Yes, I'm home again.  
After being away from the end of June until now,
I am happy to return.
Jenny is still recovering from her stem cell transplant, 
but she's able to function on her own again.

I couldn't brew kombucha at her house as she recovered.
Yogurt was on the cusp,
but now,
I'm home,
and the 
kombucha is fermenting and the yogurt is too.

I'll have yogurt.
In two weeks, 
I'll have home brewed kombucha!

Life is good!

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Making Bracelets and the Big Bracelet Extravaganza This Morning!

Tomorrow is the big day!
It's the 
Bracelet Extravaganza
Art Beads 

Here's the link.
to go there.

I'll have these 5 bracelets 
for sale.
(I almost didn't use the word 
because every time I do,
wants me to boost my post instead.)

I also have 3 more bracelets to photograph.

So, if you wonderful buyers there choose my bracelets to buy,
I will be able to list 3 more.

8 AM
Be there
Be square!

Friday, October 16, 2015

Three Beautiful Things This Week

Three Beautiful Things This Week was inspired by a wonderful blog that Clare writes called Three Beautiful Things. Everyday, Clare writes about 3 Beautiful Things that happen each day in her life. It's a wonderful blog! I can only hope to imitate her in a very small way.

1) Yesterday,  I found not one, but two ginkgo leaves!  What a treasure these leaves are for me!  They are symbolic of hope.  I think we all need hope.

2) I love the framed leaves!

3) Pixie and I had a good walk this morning!

Thursday, October 15, 2015

I Have Beads to Show!!!!!

When I made this bead it was an 
That was experiment was to see if I could make a hollow polymer clay bead using a styrofoam ball.

This was my fifth try.

The hollow beads I made before this 
exploded and broke apart in my oven.


Well, the fifth one worked!

The sixth and seventh ones didn't, 
the fifth one worked.

I call it


Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Worth Repeating: Thinking Outside the Box

 I'd like to demonstrate the concept of thinking creatively using this box.  The only problems were that this box was too small for me to sit in and contemplate creative thinking.  The box was too big to fit on my head so it sort of floated around when I tried to use it to think.  The box was too fragile to hold my weight if I sat on it.  So, it was time to think outside of the box, literally. I put the box down on the floor, an I sat next to it.  Creative solution?  Yes, because I realized I could put in some of the smaller items I was taking to  the thrift store.  They were more fragile and needed some protection.  Creativity in action.

I define creativity as the flow of ideas and actions that happens when trying to solve problems or develop new concepts.  Usually in the arts, these two ideas are one in the same.  Innovation comes from creativity.  Creativity flows outside of the box.  Sometimes it bounces inside the box and out again.  Sometimes the flow of new ideas or ways of doing things circles the box and never goes inside that box. Sometimes the creative flow takes the old ideas and meshes them together to see the problem in a new way.  Wouldn't it have been fun if I could have developed a way to sit on the box and have it on top of my head at the same time?

Creative ideas lead to action.  Actions lead to innovation.  Then the cycle begins again, and it doesn't matter what you do.  You might not make glass beads, but you love to cook.  Do you always follow the recipe or do you add your own touches to your family's favorite dish?  Do you play golf?  You have to develop certain skills in this game, but creativity flows when you have to decide where and how hard to hit that ball so that you can  get that ball in the hole with the fewest strokes.    Getting dressed each day can be a creative challenge for a 4 year old.  Look at some of the wonderful outfits a child can find in their closets and drawers.

See?  Creativity is everywhere.  The best thing is that everyone is creative.  Most of the time, we just don't recognize our gift.  Every time you solve a problem.  Every time you make a change in what you do or how you see life.  This is creativity.  Now go sit next to that box.  Let the creativity flow. 

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

It's the Perfect Blue...

As I read more about happiness and happy people, 
I find there is a direct link to
happiness and gratitude.

Studies have shown and continue to show that 
happy people are grateful people.

The practice of gratitude
releases serotonin and dopamine
in our brains.
Both of these chemicals 
increase the feelings of happiness 
and decrease the feelings of 
and hopelessness.

I was diagnosed with clinical depression about 5 years ago.
Each day can be a battle.
I know what happens with clinical depression.
It's a living hell on earth.
I am not speaking of this lightly.
When you are clinically depressed,
being grateful for anything is, at best, difficult.
However, the good news is that it's not impossible.

It takes effort and time, and you need to continue to work with your doctor.
However, what I have found is this:
Writing down, each day, at least one thing for which you are grateful, is the beginning of healing.
Remember gratitude journals?
There is great wisdom in using one.

Somedays, the only thing you might be able to write down is that
"It's night time, at last.  I can go to sleep."
(One of my journal entries.)
"At least, the house didn't fall down today."
(another entry)
"When I fell down, I didn't break a bone."
(Yes, another entry.)

The beginning of happiness is being grateful for the small things.
 "That blue is the perfect blue."

Yes, it's a small thing, but I am grateful.

Look around you.
What will go on your list of gratitude today?

Monday, October 12, 2015

Thoughts on Beads

this is not a bead,
it's a pin I made for my neighbor.
She wanted a pin, so I made this.
She has seen it, and she likes it.
I'm glad.
It does make me happy when someone likes my beads!

There are so many ways to make beads.
They can be made from glass.
(My favorite way.)

Polymer clay.
(That's how I made the pin, using polymer clay.)

Paper beads are fun and interesting to make, and they are, surprisingly, durable.

(I love fabric beads.)
You can really do a lot with fabric and beads.

Metals and Precious Metals
You can forge beads out of sheet metal.  They are AWESOME!

Wire beads are fun and very interesting to make.  I'm not sure that I could make two exactly alike.

I've never tried it, but I've seen some beautiful pottery beads.

You can decorate wood so that it's beautiful.

Rocks look great when drilled and painted.

I think that when there's a will, there's a way.  Right now, I can't think of any other ways to make beads. 
Can you think of any?
I'd love to hear what you think!

Friday, October 9, 2015

Three Beautiful Things This Week

Three Beautiful Things This Week was inspired by a wonderful blog that Clare writes called Three Beautiful Things. Everyday, Clare writes about 3 Beautiful Things that happen each day in her life. It's a wonderful blog! I can only hope to imitate her in a very small way.

1)  Yes, it's my birthday today!  Of course, I am thankful that I have lived long enough to have my head covered in gray hair, which I dye pink!  I am so grateful!  To me, that's a beautiful thing.

2) I have been blessed by a wonderful family, two amazing adult children, and so many wonderful pets who have been with me through thick and thin.  Not everyone is that blessed, but I have been!

3) Art is a gift.  I have been blessed with art in my life, growth through art, and so many wonderful friends who are artists!  It's been an amazing life so far.  I can hardly wait to see what's going to happen next!

Happy Birthday to me!!!

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Thoughts on the Eve of my Next Year of Life

Yes, tomorrow is my birthday.
I am ending my 66th year of life and beginning my 67th.
My life has been an interesting journey,
and I have no doubt that the twists and turns my life has taken will continue.
there is never a dull moment.

1) Whenever I have said, "Never," I have found myself in Neverland.

After a trip to Chicago, when I was in college, a child of the southwest,
a friend and I took a class trip, and we both said, 
"I'll never live here."
She lived there 5 years, and I lived in Chicago 10.

Now, I don't dare say "Never!"

2) When you're from a region that is multicultural and diverse, full of the arts, and you move to an extremely conservative part of the US, let's just say, northern and very, very cold, with the state initials of ND, you learn what real cold is all about.  You learn what closed minds are all about.  
You learn how much more open and vibrant the southwest is...which is what gets you through the winters in another area of the country where you said, "Never," Minnesota.  I never dreamed I'd live here, much less, 26 years of my life.  At least in the bigger cities here, you find an openness to diversity that you cannot find in other areas of the midwest.  I've gotten used to Minnesota, and there is Minnesota Nice.  People do try to be nice here.

3)  Oddly enough, my feet have grown.  When I first got married, my shoe size was either 7 or 7 1/2.  Now I wear 8 1/2 - 9 1/2.  I can't figure that one out!

4) I was blessed with two wonderful children!  Thank God for that!  They are my lifeline!  I was incredibly blessed with children who have become magnificent adults!  What could be better than that!

5) I dyed my hair pink a year and a half ago, and it was one of the best things I ever did for myself!  I thought I had forgotten to have fun, but I learned that with pink hair, in spite of the stares, you can have a lot of fun.  My feeling is that if people don't like it, they don't have to look.  That's part of the lack of diversity.  Oh, well.  I love my hair!

I don't know at which hour I was born, but, in the end, it doesn't matter.
I have already lived more than I will live.
I have spent a lot of time having fun.
I used to think I had no regrets, but I am finding now, I do.
There are some things you can never change, and that's ok.
There are many things you can change, and they will impact you or someone else, 
and that's not bad.
I don't know how many more days, weeks, hours, minutes, seconds or years I will live, but I plan to fill those times with great joy and as much fun as I can have.
I hope to leave the world a little bit better than when I arrived.
So, tonight as I sleep, my birthday will arrive.
I hope to sleep well.
Blessings to you and yours.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Worth Repeating Wednesday: Enhancing Your Creative Gifts

 Working on that Creative Side of Your Brain
Creativity is a gift, and everyone has this gift.  How we manifest that gift is unique.  For some, creativity is expressed in writing, drawing, or hands on work such as with glass or clay.  For others, creativity is expressed by making unique pieces of jewelry or sculpture.  For others, creativity is expressed in cooking, cleaning or organizing.  Yes, creativity is expressed in these ways too.  Decoration is my downfall, yet, when you walk into my neighbor's home, you see her creativity expressed by the framed photos on the walls, the flowers in the vases, and the colors in her kitchen.  My neighborhood is full of creative people.  My next door neighbor has a unique gift for gardening, and I do love her garden!  She has made our neighborhood much more beautiful with her creativity!
It doesn't matter how our gifts of creativity are expressed, the part of our brains which blesses us with the creative flow still needs to be nurtured and worked.  Creativity is a process.  Like a flowing stream, with all the swirls and pools, creativity needs to developed, because if the flow of water (creativity) dries up, a stagnant pool develops.
So, how do we do this, knowing, that at times our Muse is on vacation in Hawaii, and we are not.  The first thing we need to do is to accept that, at times, the creative flow will be slow or non existent.  This just happens.  Acceptance works wonders.  The next thing we need to do is to begin to lovingly  nurture the bits and pieces of creativity we know is still there.  You can't force the Muse's return, but you can gently urge her back.
How do we peel away the layers to our creative brains and open the door for creativity to flow again.  Luckily, there are a lot of things we can do.
Stop struggling and take a break.  I have been off my torch for almost 2 months now.  I am finally  beginning to feel the urge to light that baby up and make beads again.  It's been a long time since I have felt this way
Try something new!  I have been working with polymer clay, fibers, and wire during this self imposed hiatus.  I have also been working at organizing my home.  That has been drawing out my creative muse.  I think she wants to get back to glass!  She doesn't like organizing
I have been writing, too, much more than I have in a long time.  Writing exercises my brain, and helps to draw out my thoughts, sometimes, thoughts I had hidden away
Look at life through a different lens.  Now instead of resistance to many things, I say, "Why not?"  Acceptance of things we can't change is amazing.
Exercises that stimulate the brain also help.  One of my favorite exercises during this hiatus has become listing.  I am not one to make an art journal of lists, although, I have seen some beautiful art journals of lists.  I simply hand write or use my phone or Ipad to make lists.  They are simple, minimalist, and, yet, they are effective
One of my favorite writers of the past, Erma Bombeck once wrote, "I list, therefore, I am."  I think she's right.  In many ways, we are our lists: our lives, our likes, our dislikes, our hopes, our thoughts, our to do's, our yesterdays, our tomorrows.  And, listing can stimulate the brain to open up, to allow the creative juices to warm up and flow.  
So, I have an assignment for you.  I want you to begin to list, and to list often.  You can make a list journal or, like me, use the plain and simple for listing.  The goal is to list and list often.  You don't have to spend a lot time listing, or you can.  It's up to you.  All I ask is that you take the time to enjoy what you list.  An easy way to get started is to try this assignment.  Set the timer for  five to ten minutes.  In that time, free yourself up for this gentle exercise of listing.  If the phone rings, don't answer it.  Let your writing flow during that time.  If it doesn't, don't sweat it.  Enjoy the time you have to list.
Are you ready?  Here's your first assignment.  In these next few minutes, make a list of all the words you can think of beginning with the letter A.  That's it.  Then, for the next 24 days go through the alphabet making lists, and you are on your way!  You will find that the creative juices are flowing, maybe in ways you didn't expect.  The journey begins with one step.  This is your first step.  
The letter A.
Let me know how this works for you.  I'd love to hear.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

At last! Beads!!!!!But they are not your ordinary beads, they are rather big Beads, except the earrings, of course!

These "pendants" are BIG!
The earrings are LONG,
and they were fun to make!
I don't think I'll put these in my Etsy Shop, but they will go on my wall,
except for the earrings, of course,
they will go on my ears!

to go to my Etsy Store.